Tuesday, 30 April 2013

Review: Darwin Deez, Rock City Nottingham

It's not every gig you attend that you can close your eyes and allow the music and atmosphere to take you somewhere completely different.

As a crowd member at this seemingly under populated Rock City gig you could easily believe you'd some how time travelled back to an awkward teenage boy's bedroom as Darwin Smith (lead singer) and the rest of the band began the show with a slick and well rehearsed hip-hop style dance routine.

The guitar melody of You Can't Be My Girl broke the excited and surprised cheers of the mixed crowd, who must have all felt the same need to stop in their tracks and start dancing- complete with glow-sticks.

The humorous band dance routines, to the crowds glee, became expected brief dancing interludes filling the normally awkward gap between songs.

Smith did, however, indulge into a few guitar solos boring the crowd a little for which he apologized: "I've fallen in love with playing the guitar, sorry". It seems everyone attending wanted the same thing from the gig: to dance and sing the night away to the quirky tunes.

Finally the highly anticipated and catchy first few bars of constellations began, and the crowd was alive again, transforming the barely half full venue into a massive sing-along.

Surprisingly the band didn't save the chart topping Radar Detector for the encore, choosing some of the tracks from their new album, Songs From Imaginative People instead.

Smith grinned and gushed with thanks as it was time for the band to leave, " We've made it to Rock City!" he said.

Darwin Deez, Rock City,Saturday 27th April.

Monday, 8 April 2013

Margaret Thatcher Dies

You could compare her to marmite: you either loved her or you hated her. Whatever your opinion, there's no denying Magaret Thatcher was, and still is, a massive figure of female empowerment. The first female Prime Minister with a strong will and equally strong sense of style to match.

She divided opinion, but this is not to say that I agree with every policy she implimented during her time as Prime Minister.

She also arguably did very little in her time as our leader for women: she froze child benefit, refused to invest in affordable childcare and the rest, however it is not the where she placed the governments investments or the benefits she froze that should be remembered, it is her remarkable journey that proves anyone can reach their goals with hard work and determination.

The journey from daughter of a greengrocer in Grantham to the highest position in British politics.

Not only did she break through the class barrier to reach her position, she broke through the gender one too, and this is what makes her such a great female role model.

She may not have done all she could for women's rights when she got to number ten, but she drilled into both men and women's heads that both politics and leadership are gender neuteral.

This is what we should remember when we think of Lady Thatcher. The legacy she has left, an inspiration to strong women everywhere and not the problems she may have caused.

It should be remembered that she was an elderly lady. An elderly lady that has died, and she should be respected for what she undoubtably did for Britian, despite her flaws. 

R.I.P Maggie Thatcher.

Friday, 5 April 2013

Chocolate Brownie Cake

I came across this recipe whilst reading back issues of Good Food magazine, and have been wanting to give it a try for a while... and what better opportunity than to use my boyfriend coming round for dinner tonight as a guinea pig !

The recipe is pretty much the same as a normal brownie, however the seperation of the eggs and whisking of the egg whites used in this one, however faffy, certainly leads to good results.

So! Without further ado... 


  • 175g butter
  • 225g chocolate (broken into pieces)
  • 200g caster sugar
  • 3 medium eggs (seperated into whites and yolks)
  • 65g plain flour
  1. Preheat your oven to 180 degrees and then line your cake tin with grease proof paper
  2. Place the chocolate, butter and sugar in a saucepan and stir over a low heat until melted. Leave to cool
  3. Whisk the egg yolks into the mixture (ensuring it is properly cooled) followed by the flour
  4. Whisk the egg whites in a seperate bowl until they form soft peaks, and then add to the chocolatey mixture 
  5. Finally pour the mixture into your cake tin and bake in the oven for 35-40 minutes (the deeper the tin, the longer it'll need)
 Sprinkle with icing sugar and serve hot with a scoop of vanilla ice cream or cream- perfection!

Thursday, 4 April 2013

Philpotts: Fault of the welfare system?

The Philpott case has been that of a dark and emotive one which has unfolded in the public eye over the past year and finally come to an end. Justice for those children at last some may say... but what is justice when those poor innocent children are gone?

Left in the wake of the horrendous and selfless crime carried out by Mick Philpott, his wife Mairead and family friend Paul Mosley are not only angry family and friends, but a shocked country looking for someone or something, so it seems, to blame.

A serious case review is now to be taken place into the deaths of the six children by Derbyshire Safe Guarding Children's Board, and today Chancellor George Osbourne visited Derby sparking a political debate.

He questioned whether the state should pay for the lifestyles of people like Mick Philpott: arguably what we have all been thinking, is it not?

Shadow Chancellor Ed Balls however condemned the comments made as a "cynical act of a desperate chancellor."

I'm with George on this one. 

Labour may argue that the Conservatives are making the rich richer and the poor poorer, but what about those in-between. What about those just over the cusp of receiving benefits because they work hard to achieve the lifestyle they desire? Surely this isn't how it should be, and surely it can be argued that it isn't fair that hard working people should have to pay taxes to fund lifestyles like Mick Philpott's.

This is not to say Mick Philpott is  representative of all on benenfit: this was a freak case. However, it has dug up issues within the welfare system. A system where people are rewarded for not working and having more children, and a system which punishes those who do work.

I ask you this, Ed; what about the tax payers who fund these lifestyles, those who are on the borderline of paying for other peoples benefit whilst not receiving their own, and those who are "punished" economically for working?

Surely this isn't fair, and surely a reform is not something that will make the rich richer and the poor poorer, but encourage people to go out and work instead of opting for the easy option.