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Heroica

22 May

Last night I went to the Flapper & Firkin in Birmingham to see my good friends, Heroica play their last gig!

Founded in 2005, Heroica are a four-piece who met while studying at Aston University through the ‘Live Music Society’.

The guys describe their music as “Alcohol-fuelled hard pub-rock” and are influenced by classic rock and blues such as Thin Lizzy, Cream and Free.

Over the past couple of years I have had the privilege of (sort of) working with Heroica, in a somewhat “I’ll scratch your back if you scratch mine’ way.

I was organising ‘Get Your Rocks Off’ with a group of classmates. A huge event at Birmingham’s Custard Factory which involved live bands, DJs and a fashion show, combining vintage and River Island clothing.

Heroica volunteered their musical services and played a fantastic set at the event (in exchange for free haircuts!).

A few months later I found myself writing a few features for Spaghetti junction, the Birmingham City University student magazine.

The editors wanted a profile of a local band, and, instantly thinking of Heroica, I volunteered myself for the piece!

Click image to enlarge

You can still hear a selection of their songs via Facebook and My Space.

Park Güell and Back!

14 May

This morning we took the metro to the nearest stop to Park Güell.

I have been to this beautiful site a number of times in the past but every time am even more awe-struck by its beauty and uniqueness!

Park Güell was designed by the Catalan architect Antoni Gaudí and built in the years 1900 to 1914. From 1906 to 1926 Gaudí  lived in one of the houses in park himself, but not one that he had designed!

Park Güell’s complex design means paths can take you off route and you end up discovering a different part than you had planned! This is all part of the beauty of the park and although it’s very busy with tourists, there is a very peaceful and calm atmosphere.

The two buildings at the entrance, though very original and remarkable with fantastically shaped roofs with unusual pinnacles, fit in well with the use of the park as pleasure gardens and seem relatively inconspicuous in the landscape when you compare them to other buildings designed by Gaudí.


We eventually made our way to the large cross at the Park’s highest point, which offers the most complete view of Barcelona and the bay.


We got a fabulous panorama of the city, with the Sagrada Família and the Montjuïc area visible in the distance.


Finally, we made our way to the central focal point of Park Güell; the main terrace which is surrounded by a long bench in the form of a sea serpent. This is covered in broken ceramic pieces, to form a wonderful mosaic effect.


Apparently, to design the curvature of the bench surface Gaudí used the shape of buttocks left by a naked workman sitting in wet clay!

Underneath the terrace a small orchestra play music, which is amplified by the fantastic acoustics supplied by the shape and height of the terrace above! This added further ambience to the park and I actually took a moment to sit there with my eyes closed to take in the beautiful music; Bach, Air

… which was quickly interrupted by all the illegitimate souvenir merchants being chased off by the police!!

Here they are playing Pachelbel’s Canon…

After leaving the park we casually walked into the surrounding neighbourhood in the direction of the city. After stumbling upon a number of quaint, tree-lined streets the famous Sagrada Família appeared at the end! So we sat outside a cafe directly opposite and ate some paella while taking in the magnificent site!

Not sure what we’ll do tomorrow (take it as it comes) so check back and see!

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