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Is this the Year of the Return of the New Wave? Or will Keane win?

Yesterday was the 13th Anniversary of Freddie Mercury's death, whilst [almost] coincidentally, tomorrow marks the occasion of the 13th Mercury Music Prize, which he had nothing to do with.
In that time, we've seen classical-punk piano recitals nominated, agit-prop rockers repeatedly snubbed and Radiohead routinely listed but falling short [though not this year.]. It's always a varied list, but are you really interested in the obscure, the fusion, the orchestral and the jazz?
Listen to 'em all here , and fill up the gaps here. A complete list of past nominees and winners can be found here , and the bookies seem to rate both The Streets and Franz Ferdinand worthy of the accolade, according to odds published here.
Will ascullion again pick the winner? Listen on the web to find out tomorrow, midnight GMT, or watch on digital TV in the UK . Previous years' threads here.
posted by dash_slot- on Sep 6, 2004 - 14 comments

You gotta beat 53/70!

BBC Test the Nation: Popular Music.
UK centric [slightly] quiz in the Test The Nation series [- but allows a 'not UK' option.]
Who did write the theme from 'The Office' Handbags & Gladrags'?
posted by dash_slot- on Sep 4, 2004 - 24 comments

NekkidManMarch

It's marching season again in the UK. They always cause a heap of trouble for all concerned [NSFW unless your workplace is tolerant of full frontal noodlety]
posted by srboisvert on Sep 2, 2004 - 23 comments

The Line:

A new newspaper for London. The first edition of The Line comes out today - apparently, despite its size, the UK capitol lacked an independent paper until now (please feel free to correct this if it is wrong). It's still thin, but does provide an interesting alternative look at issues both local and global.
posted by jb on Sep 1, 2004 - 17 comments

Impeach Tony Blair

Impeach Tony Blair. Backed by a large dossier, supported by a handful (so far) of UK members of parliament. Summarised by The Spectator.
posted by iffley on Aug 26, 2004 - 21 comments

Ker-azy Policies!

The USA is sending the refugees from Monserrat back home. Why? Because the threat from their volcano is no longer regarded as "temporary", but "permanent".
posted by Pretty_Generic on Aug 20, 2004 - 24 comments

By Gum, I divvent!

English Accents and Dialects. The British Library has compiled an online archive of northern speech dating back to the 19th century. The recordings range from from audio from Victorian cylinder dictaphones to 1950s football fans chanting.
posted by Masi on Aug 1, 2004 - 10 comments

The Album Club

No time to pick out your own music? Still like the CD format? Live in the UK? Well has The Rough Trade Shop got a club for you. Is this outmoded on arrival or an interesting variant on old style "X-Of-the-Month" clubs? I know I sometimes find it overwhelming to keep up with what's new'n'exciting.
posted by PinkStainlessTail on Jul 30, 2004 - 8 comments

Global warming hits UK birds.

Global warming hits UK birds. The year without young. Have we hit the bottleneck?
posted by lupus_yonderboy on Jul 30, 2004 - 43 comments

About English schools

A guide to the English school system. From the BBC. This certainly explained a few things for me. (And remember, private school = public school)
posted by iffley on Jul 29, 2004 - 7 comments

More Whitewash, Jeeves?

As the verdict of Butler Report into the intelligence used to justify the war in Iraq, draws near in Britain, a senior intelligence source reveals that MI6 took the "rare step" of withdrawing the intelligence assessment that underpinned the claim that Saddam had continued to produce WMD (an admission that such information was fundamentally unreliable), however Blair did not tell the public "that the evidence of WMD was crumbling beneath him". [Watch the Panorama programme in question here for 7 days from 11-7-2004] The Dossier that Lord Hutton declared was not sexed-up (leading to senior BBC resignations), Dr Brian Jones (former head of the nuclear, chemical and biological branch of the Ministry of Defence's Defence Intelligence Staff) says was sexed-up, and details exactly how.
posted by Blue Stone on Jul 12, 2004 - 26 comments

My dad is cleverer than your dad!

Top 100 British...Intellectuals? Rock bands, schmock bands. Who are currently the cream of British Intelligentsia? Prospect names 100 of (supposedly) the UK's finest and asks you to vote for your top 5, plus a write-in. The list is discussed further here. Some entrants may make you wonder, some may make you gasp, most you just won't have a clue about!
posted by biffa on Jul 1, 2004 - 22 comments

rude postcodes

Rude place names. If you're in England then this is for you. Please bare with us rest of the world, this is what we really like in our humour (at least it in Kilburn). If you're not in England then feel free to use my postcode, NW2. Ooooo, titter ye not (and who will be the first wag to post "not"?)
posted by ciderwoman on Jun 28, 2004 - 30 comments

Quite a three pipe metafilter post.

Sherlock Holmes: the quotations; the pipes; the author (the public house named after him - the worst in Scotland, judging by the comments); the top ten lists; the vulcan; the city; the monographs; the magazine; the marvelous stories, of course; and more.
posted by nthdegx on Jun 23, 2004 - 9 comments

Blair in Trouble...

The UK local elections have taken place, and for the first time ever forced the ruling Labour government into third position, with their worst showing in history. Is this just a mid-term blip, or the culmination of the huge Iraq backlash that will topple the government? With Bush in trouble too, will any of the warring leaders be left come November? And can the Big Intervention website topple Blair himself?
posted by wibbler on Jun 11, 2004 - 13 comments

First they came for the Saskatoon berries, and I said nothing....

As if mad cow wasn't enough. The UK has pulled saskatoon berries from store shelves while they decide if the berries are safe to eat. If not, my family in Saskatchewan should be dead by now. The UK Food Standards Agency is looking for your views on these cute little berries. So juicy, so tasty, so purple. How can you say no?
posted by Salmonberry on Jun 8, 2004 - 32 comments

mmm, swastikky

The British National Party discover Flash. Britons: remember to vote on Thursday to stop these guys getting their first European MP.
posted by Pretty_Generic on Jun 8, 2004 - 32 comments

Order! Order!! Order!!!

They Work For You was launched at yesterday's NotCon '04 by the people who brought you Fax Your MP. It makes Hansard accessible, via search facilities (by MP or by topic), with each individual speech presented as a separate, linkable entry. Get an RSS feed of your own MP's speeches, hold them to account over their special interests, but most of all, don't forget to vote this week!
posted by cbrody on Jun 7, 2004 - 5 comments

Suicide.....by Chat?

Dial-Up For Murder.
So, you're a typical geeky teenage boy with serious angst and a death wish. How do you commit the fatal deed? Obvious! Groom an older boy by writing 50,000 lines of fantasy, inventing 8 characters, including a female spy offering sex, meet up to buy a blade, and voila! - redefine murder plots for us all.
Wierdest.Web.Story.Evah?
posted by dash_slot- on May 29, 2004 - 15 comments

Tempered over burning witches

HOLY GRAIL FOUND AT LAST. In Yorkshire, amongst sheep. Tastes pretty good.
posted by Shane on May 10, 2004 - 11 comments

The Diamond Sutra

A few days ago we had the Gutenberg Bible from the 1450s. Feh. The British Library now presents the oldest printed book in the world, the 868AD Diamond Sutra, in Shockwave format.
posted by Pretty_Generic on May 8, 2004 - 10 comments

British soldiers in Iraq torture photos

British soldiers in new Iraq torture photos. Brutal photos and story in today's Daily Mirror.
posted by iffley on May 1, 2004 - 145 comments

By 'Eck Tarquin

British TV Adverts.
posted by seanyboy on Apr 24, 2004 - 6 comments

Reclaiming England's patron saint

Cry God for Harry! England and Saint George!
posted by nthdegx on Apr 23, 2004 - 7 comments

a land with a troubled past

Conflict Archive on the Internet: history, images, and more from Northern Ireland, 1968 to the present.
posted by armage on Apr 16, 2004 - 3 comments

Sky Ear

Sky Ear will be a one-night event in which a glowing "cloud" of mobile phones and helium balloons is released into the air so that people can dial into the cloud and listen to the sounds of the sky. The cloud will be made of one thousand large helium balloons each responding to the electromagnetic environment (created by distant storms, mobile phones, police and ambulance radios, television broadcasts, etc.) with coloured blue, red and yellow lights.
posted by schoolgirl report on Apr 9, 2004 - 22 comments

Clueless About History

Clueless about History Britain is a nation of history dunces with many even believing Adolf Hitler never existed, according to a new survey. A quarter of those interviewed were not sure if the Battle of Trafalgar was a real historic event, while one in seven did not know the Battle of Hastings really took place. Sadly, it gets worse. Apparently the Battle of Endor actually happened in some people's minds.
posted by Coop on Apr 5, 2004 - 56 comments

temporary temples

temporary temples
man made or not ... they are cool. via the new newstoday
posted by specialk420 on Mar 16, 2004 - 5 comments

The Old Telephone Company

The Old Telephone Company, Essex, England
posted by hama7 on Mar 12, 2004 - 7 comments

The world of double entendre

The recent post that revived the rude ‘Rainbow’ kids show sketch reminded me of the our (that is, British) obsession with comic double entendre - the ability to accept the filthiest things as long as there is a parallel innocuous interpretation. I think it is something to do our love for wordplay and subtext, our innate hypocrisy and the belief that sex is, in fact, rather naughty. Perhaps the prime example are the Julian and Sandy sketches that ran on the BBC Radio show ‘Beyond Our Ken’ from 1964-69. Over Sunday lunch, millions (there was ONLY the BBC in those days) listened to two very camp characters saying outrageous things in Polari (underground gay slang). A much earlier prime example is the great dirty joke (it’s the one in blue at the bottom of the page) that got comedian Max Miller (died in 1963) banned from the BBC for 5 years. A more recent case of innuendo is, of course, Mrs. Slocombe’s pussy. Of course the double entendre can also be unintentional.
posted by rolo on Feb 27, 2004 - 8 comments

Strange Times

I feel like I have stepped through the looking glass.... first, we have the truly surprising but welcome sight of Michael Howard celebrating cultural diversity in Britain, then we have David Goodhart, editor of Prospect, apparently a magazine of the left, suggesting that perhaps we have quite enough immigrants in the UK for the moment, thank you. Goodhart's article is very provocative and very important, it's a debate that needs to be had and which has most certainly and entertainingly been joined by Trevor Phillips. I love a schism!
posted by Fat Buddha on Feb 24, 2004 - 11 comments

It's an electric field!

On the A46 motorway heading towards Bath, Richard Box has "planted" a field of flourescent tubes powered entirely by the electric field surrounding some overhead power lines. A very cool piece of art, but with a serious background: some people believe that the electromagnetic fields around power lines can cause cancer, while others aren't so sure.
posted by bwerdmuller on Feb 23, 2004 - 27 comments

Dark Weaver of dreams

Garth Marenghi is a sculptor of nightmares, is the only person you'll ever meet who has written more books than he has read. Now you can see the return of his Cult '80s TV show. If you only get to see one TV series from the UK this year, and if you dare, then vist the Dark Place.
posted by seanyboy on Jan 30, 2004 - 17 comments

Hutton Inquiry Out

The Hutton Inquiry has concluded its investigation. It unanimously vindicates the British Government, castigates the BBC for lying and criticising the Government's honour, and mildly criticises some aspects of the Intelligence services and Dr. David Kelly himself.
An accessible PDF to HTML version of the Hutton website - The Guardian's Hutton site - The BBC's Hutton site - Google News UK.
posted by Blue Stone on Jan 28, 2004 - 57 comments

Is The BBC The United Nations Of Broadcasting?

Trusting The Redcoats: How many independent-minded Americans actually rely on the BBC (specially the World Service) for accurate coverage of American politics? Not to mention The Guardian. Is it a strictly an elitist, liberal/left-wing phenomenon? What does it mean? What does it say about better-informed liberal newspapers and media of the U.S.? If so, why aren't like-minded Europeans just as cosmopolitan and, say, pay the same attention to news sources like The New York Times, NPR and others, rather than stolidly sticking to their own national staples?
posted by MiguelCardoso on Jan 14, 2004 - 71 comments

As opposed to that authentic smoke...

Fake bongs for conspiracists with time on their hands... But can square-jawed MeFites figure out what happened here? Remember, Captain Scarlet is indestructible...
posted by klaatu on Jan 5, 2004 - 23 comments

Moving Archives

The Sorcerer's Scissors; Air Raid Practice, Knoll School Hove; and An Eye to the Future [wmv's all, I'm afraid]. These and other examples nonpareil available at the University of Brighton's Moving History: "A guide to UK film and television archives in the public sector".
posted by nthdegx on Dec 30, 2003 - 2 comments

Trillions of Pints

Who wants to own the United Kingdom? Slightly used, with annex. Rains a bit. Trains often late. Nice gardens. Food dubious, but lots of places to drink. Only 8.8 trillion dollars. I'm sure other countries could be bought for cheaper, and the citizens would probably be more willing to sell. If you really want your own private island, these would be the best people to speak to.
posted by Jimbob on Dec 29, 2003 - 17 comments

Wounded British soldier gets lawsuit for Christmas?!

Wounded British soldier gets lawsuit for Christmas?! Thankfully not.
Alan Tudball was supposed to marry his fiance Claire McCombe in April of this year, but unfortunately Iraq -- and friendly fire from two U.S. A-10 tankbusters (video) -- spoiled the wedding plans. Tudball would have died if not for brave Christopher Finney, who rescued the grievously wounded Tudball, even as the U.S. planes circled around for another strafing run. The M.O.D. refused to pay the wedding's cancellation fee, and the Leasowe Castle Hotel -- not knowing of Tudball's circumstances -- initiated a lawsuit, but after media attention and several concerned phone calls (mine included), I am pleased to announce that the management of the Leasowe Castle Hotel has announced that they are not only dropping the lawsuit, but that they will host the wedding of Mr. Alan Tudball and Miss Claire McCombe free of charge. It's worth noting that when our leaders seem to only be capable of serving up plastic turkeys, the action of ordinary people working together can still bring about honest-to-goodness Christmas miracles.
posted by insomnia_lj on Dec 23, 2003 - 2 comments

The U.K. Honours System

Take This Honour And Shove It Up Your Arse: Some, like JG Ballard and Benjamin Zephaniah, want the UK Honours System abolished; others want it reformed; diehards want it left as it is. The recent leaking of a distinguished list of refuseniks, coming just after Sir Mick Jagger got his ya-yas out in Buckingham Palace, reminds us of Groucho Marx's famous comment that he'd never join a club that would take members like him. It's certainly an archaic and complicated system but, it seems to me, no more open to abuse than other countries' systems. And, arguably, no less ridiculous or hypocritical either. But is it (symbolically, culturally, whatever) useful enough nowadays, simple political expediency apart, to be worth hanging on to?
posted by MiguelCardoso on Dec 22, 2003 - 17 comments

NWOBHM!!

The New Wave Of British Heavy Metal (NWOBHM to cognoscenti) one of the lesser known but most influential movements of the past quarter century. After the innovators of Metal ran out of steam in the late 70's and were stampeded in the maelstrom of punk, heavy metal (and testosterone-soaked delindquents everywhere) found itself in a quandary). A number of UK acts took some cues from the punks, shortened the songs, reigned in the self-indulgence and speeded up the tempo, and upped the relevance and intelligence of the lyrical content, while still retaining the vocal prowess, instrumental pyrotechnics and young warrior energy that makes it Metal in the first place. Some groups became world famous. Others only big in Europe. Some great ones missed stardom by just a notch. Many of these acts have been cited as inspirations by Metallica, Megadeth, Slayer, Napalm Death and the thrash/death metal hordes, and even many post-punks. An interesting summary for fans, and a good introduction for non-mans who may have to recalibrate their opinion of the genre after checking some of these bands out.
posted by jonmc on Dec 17, 2003 - 17 comments

Cockroach baby ads banned

UK bans controversial charity ads In recent weeks, UK newspaper readers have been opening their newspapers to find full-page, colour pictures of a cockroach crawling out of the mouth of a baby. Now the adverts, for children's charity Barnardo's, have been banned. Barnado's maintain that the pre-Christmas ads were justified as "a way of cutting through the apathy."
posted by TheophileEscargot on Dec 10, 2003 - 51 comments

The Museum of London

The Museum of London.
posted by plep on Dec 7, 2003 - 7 comments

Mae hen wlad fy nhadau yn an nwyl i mi, John

The BBC is asking visitors of its news site to vote from a shortlist of the ten most embarrassing political moments. Visitors can watch a short film [real media] which shows all ten nominated moments (forgive the home-video moments style background muzak). There's some variety here: Tony Blair and Neil Kinnock in moments exhibiting a baffling degree of misguidedness, George W Bush and Kenneth Clarke in tight spots (figuratively and literally), while Charles Kennedy and John Prescott probably coming out of their situations looking better than they did beforehand. For me the most cringe-inducing clip is that of John Redwood, the then newly appointed Secretary of State for Wales, attempting to mime the Welsh national anthem. Genuinely difficult to watch.
posted by nthdegx on Dec 5, 2003 - 31 comments

BFI presents screenonline

BFI presents screenonline | The British Film Institute announces the launch of screenonline: "This new site features an unrivalled collection of archive film and television footage from the bfi National Film and Television Archive.... [It] is the first time the bfi has given the public access online to its comprehensive collection of film and television material, giving teachers, students and film enthusiasts an exceptional opportunity to investigate British history, culture and society through cinema. "
posted by jacknose on Dec 1, 2003 - 6 comments

Maybe I should emmigrate to... China?

The State of Britain today. Mass surveillance of it's citizenry. ID cards. Making criminals of teenagers who snog (!) And a bill to rival the USA Patriot Act removing property & human rights at a minister's whim. With men being imprisoned in UK jails for over almost 2 years, without charge or trial (ala Guantanamo) it looks like the partnership between Bush and Blair is a little more than simple expediency.
posted by Blue Stone on Dec 1, 2003 - 26 comments

Inland Review letter

Apparently genuine reply to a letter sent to the Inland Revenue. "I must take issue with your description of our last as a "begging letter". It might perhaps more properly be referred to as a "tax demand". This is how we, at the Inland Revenue have always, for reasons of accuracy, traditionally referred to such documents." [via Orbyn, via Cal]
posted by feelinglistless on Nov 28, 2003 - 9 comments

Beck Isle Museum

The Beck Isle Museum, Pickering, North Yorkshire, chronicles rural Yorkshire life of the last 200 years. The collection of photographs by Sidney Smith is good. Via Museophile's museums around the UK links page.
posted by plep on Nov 27, 2003 - 2 comments

mirror across the ocean

“We fear the government using the current climate of fear and uncertainty about the future as a means to allow itself sweeping powers without an appropriate consideration of proportionality" ......no-go zones ........ power to ban peaceful protest ...... destroy private property without compensation ........prepare for the introduction of compulsory identity cards .... The climate seems to be changing.
posted by JohnR on Nov 26, 2003 - 3 comments

Can you spot the difference in these two pictures?

In the United States, the cover of Paul Krugman's new book is a little bit different than the cover in England. (from Atrios)
posted by limitedpie on Nov 20, 2003 - 24 comments

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