Reviews, Interviews, SXSWs…

Back on track today, Manchester Music’s resident Crimea fan Stephen Gilliver gives Lottery Winners On Acid 4 out of 5.
While over on the Losing It blog they just generally rave about it, along with the album.
The single is one of this weeks six reviewed singles on MSN Entertainment though it’s less of a review more a copy and paste from a press release or the like.
The album gets a proper review over at who are extremely positive about it so I guess the 3 out of 5 is no bad thing.
Bringing you a little break from all the reviews are Subba-Cultcha who’s interview with Davey gives a little insight into the band’s future; “live we want to bring in a celloist and another guitarist and eventually a female singer”. Future Miss Springfields apply ASAP.
I forget who mentioned it but XFM are running a competition where you could maybe possibly win Crimea tickets to the 100 Club gig later this month. Which is just as well cos they’ve sold out now.
SXSW 2006It might not have sold out, but frankly you don’t wanna go buying tickets for SXSW 2006, even if The Crimea are playing. Why? Cheapest start at around ?200, and that’s without the flight over to Texas, USA.
And a quick reminder for the possible Virgin Radio session on from 1am this evening/tomorrow morning. You may think “fuck it, I’m gonna sleep” but this crazed lunatic will be up for hours recording internet streams for little to no reason. So you sleep, it’s all the same to me. Update: I’ve been greatfuly informed the Virgin Radio session won’t take place until next week. I’ll get some sleep afterall :o )

The Crimea – Lottery Winners on Acid (Warner Bros)
Rating: * * * * (Very Good)

WHEN, in 2002, a single called Lottery Winners on Acid was released to generous praise from the likes of John Peel and Mark and Lard, it duly flopped.

Four years on and a song called Lottery Winners on Acid is once again all over the radio, effusively lauded by all and sundry.

And this time around The Crimea, the latest guise of warped talent Davey Macmanus, have a minor if not major hit on their hands.

Inviting (or at least garnering) comparison with The Flaming Lips, Lottery Winners is the poppiest moment from last year?s Tragedy Rocks LP, itself an overlooked gem.


Organic and lyrically playful, it is ruddered by plinky-plonky xylophone, its sweeping chorus a shamelessly joyous sing-along of which you may well find impossible to rid from your brain.

Plus it is by no means one of the highlights of its parent album, which really should be at the very top of your New Year shopping list.

Released on January 9

Review by Stephen Gilliver for Manchester Music, 10/01/06.

The Crimea – Lottery Winners On Acid

Yet another band I was blissfully unaware of until recently. I saw a review in the NME which sounded intriguing, and when I caught an advert for the single on MTV2 which included a small piece of the song, I was even more intrigued. So, I had a look in Napster, and found not only this single, but the album it belongs to:

Tragedy RocksWhich Napster reckon was first released in 2004. I must have blinked and missed it somehow. I think they must be right, because the band?s site includes a quote from the late John Peel saying Nice Things about the song.

The single Lottery Winners on Acid is a lovely piece. Musically, it sounds not a million miles from the sound of those nice Guillemots people. Lyrically, it?s nicely warped:

If she get a black eye I want a black eye,
if she get a splinter I want a splinter too.
If she get arrested I want arrested,
if she go tripping I go falling over.

We walk through the street like lottery winners on acid,
everything she say I was thinking anyway.
We walk through the street like lottery winners on acid,
everything she say I was thinking anyway.

Also on Napster, I found a live session featuring three songs from the album and a cover version of I think we?re alone now, done in a pleasantly goofy indie-pop manner, until it breaks off into a semi-spoken bit that subverts the whole song. Or something like that, anyway:

All of a sudden I find myself hurtling through space with only the taste of your lips as evidence that I once battled against your chronic indifference and we couldn?t go the distance. I was left crippled, dead sure of the outcome you lose some, you get thrashed in some.

I?ve been listening to the album on my walks to and from work this week, and I?m really getting into it. There?s something appealing about a band who produce songs with titles like Miserabilist Tango and Bad Vibrations. Or maybe that?s just me.

The Crimea:

1. Myspace site – with sample tracks
2. Official site

Worth a listen – check out the Myspace site where you can hear the single for no charge whatsoever.

Review taken from the Losing It blog, 10/01/06.

Single Reviews

This week’s new singles rated or slated


One of the late John Peel’s favourite new acts, The Crimea first came to the attention of Travis’s singer Fran Healy. But let’s not hold that against them.

This twinkling single from debut album Tragedy Rocks finds The Crimea re-inventing power pop of a West Coast bent, complete with end-of-pier carnival anthems and, most rewardingly, splashes of Smashing Pumpkins-esque alt-rock. Certainly a name to remember for 2006.

Review taken from the MSN Entertainment website, 06/01/06.

THE CRIMEA Tragedy Rocks Warner Brothers ***

The presence of Lottery Winners on Acid would be plenty reason in itself to cheer the re-release of Tragedy Rocks, but it’s not the only weapon which The Crimea possess. Fronted by Dublin-born Davy MacManus (a member of late 1990s indie also-rans The Crocketts), The Crimea glory in the sort of dramatic, emotional melancholy which doesn’t usually come packaged with this kind of killer choruses and hooks. While a goodly part of this drama can be put down to MacManus and his punchbag lyrics, The Crimea’s musical pitch is also spot on. Between the shanty-like waltz of Lottery Winners… and the way in which Sunshine and Clouds could pass as a toast to Wayne Coyne, what should well seem off-kilter becomes the norm. Originally a low-key release last October, it’s now getting the whole promotional nine yards. Proper order, because this is one album that doesn’t deserve to fall between the cracks.

Review by Jim Carroll for

The Crimea
Davey MacManus, Vocals

Band?s Website says: What goes on in Davey MacManus’ head is not always so pretty. But as front man for The Crimea, he turns it into beautiful and sweeping rock ‘n’ roll. ?Tragedy Rocks?, (check out our review ) the London band’s debut album, is both lush and lacerating; fourteen edgy and melodic cocktails sweetened by sonic ambition and spiked with Davey’s debauched, bitter-funny tales of mean streets, meaner romance, good gin and not-so-good times. Having already received high praise from John Peel (the legendarily impassioned British DJ called “Lottery Winners On Acid” “one of the best songs I’ve heard in years”) and SPIN (which deemed the band’s 2003 SXSW showcase “an arena-worthy performance”), The Crimea are set to establish themselves as one of the brightest hopes on the British music scene? got a chance to catch up with front man Davey?

How did the recording sessions for the new album go?

Well, it was truncated toenail pulling off. We got stuck for ages and argued and changed continent and argued with Americans, and came home after 3 months in Mississippi and finished the album in our house in London. Then went to new york to mix it this January and there was 8 foot of snow, and we spent 7 weeks mixing and freezing?

What goals did you set yourself before you started recording?

I just wanted to Finnish the bloody album at some point, however it had to be different, it had to have amazing lyrics , it had to be part of the holy trinity, Nevermind, Relationship of command, tragedy rocks.

What do you feel are your own limitations when it comes to creating/writing music?

I suppose none of us are very musical but we try to do vastly musical things, so we are guessers, chancers, cheaters, also I find it hard to say anything nice, scrooge mentality.

Tell us 3 of your own favourite songs and the inspiration behind them?

?Losing my hair? – this is a song about going bald, a fear we all posses, I?m trying to link the problem of going bald with the problems of selfishness and vanity, ultimately failures in the human race.

?Baby boom? – this is a song about mans inability to keep control of his sexual destiny. The fact that man is a cad, incapable of fidelity.

?The miserabilist tango? – this is a song about a lovers rock near Dublin where couples used to jump off, I tried to link it to my love for dusty Springfield or rather what I imagine her to be.

What do you enjoy most about recording, and in contrast what do you enjoy most about playing live?

Recording is a drawn out complex nightmare, where you are never satisfied, live is like a neverending cub scout camp, where everyone is telling you you?re the best cub in the pack.

What are the bands plans for the rest of the year?

We plan to keep rolling the snowball down the hill, fi8ghting the good fight in the regions of great Britain.

What touring routines do you have, say a typical day on the road be like?

Most of my day is focused around getting ready for the gig, I smoke a lot which is no good, but its best to keep wrapped in cotton wool and float around on a cloud of candy floss when on the road, I like to go for a skate in whatever town im in. I like to see a bit of the place so I can write about it in my blog, the grittier the better, we warm up for ages before the gig, and think about my friends that have passed away, and think lucky we are not to be doing our day jobs

Who is currently moving you musically at the moment?

Regina spector, Faures requiem?

What album changed your life and why?

I didn?t really bother with music when u was growing up , just Irish music, I was a runner and only started playing guitar when I was 19. I think my life changed when I got drunk for the first time

What bands have influenced you the most musically?

Buffalo Springfield

Leonard Cohen

Dusty Springfield

Your proudest achievement so far?

Signing a second deal, I got signed when I was 19 , it was carnage trying to get another deal, when you are tarnished goods, when yopur jowls are sagging and there is a tired look in your eye, but eventually we sold the Americans our story and the rest is history

If you could erase one single/album from history (your own or someone else?s) which would it be and why?

I would take girl just died off the album, it wasn?t my choice, it doesn?t reflect the sentiment of the rest of the record?

How do you see yourself altering the band and your sound in the future? is there anything you wish to attempt in the future that’s inspiring you right now?

Well, live we want to bring in a celloist and another guitarist and eventually a female singer, but its roving hard to find the dusty Springfield of the 2000s . we want to grow and grow and grow, make our next record with Butch Vig, the sound will just realize itself, we have done most of our recording at home so far, with my sixteen track, when we go and record in a real studio with a proper producer who knows what he?s doing we will take it down to Chinatown

What drives you?

The fear of having a day job, a dislike of mornings. Listening to the radio, the faraway dream of having a house.

What are your fears?

I am scared of failure, it has me shitting pyramids, and I am scared of not having anywhere to live n, and losing my voice, and I have a lot of fears, everyday I develop a new mystery ailment, its called attention seeking?

The revolution comes, who would you like to be first against the wall (and if you’re feeling particularly bitchy, a second, third, fourth and so on…)?

I would start with every male on the planet

Best piece of advice you?d give to aspiring musicians, or the best piece of advice you were giving when you started?

Create your own thing, do not; get an indie fop haircut, wear buttons, flares, try to sound like the eighties, sing in a pseudo English council estate accent or pseudo English public schoolboy accent, go to the nearest cliff, jump off, if you survive, then your indie shite is destined for great things student twats

If you’re in a car going at the speed of light, and someone turns the headlamps on, would they do anything?

Oh god I?ve just got out of bed, I have a slow reaction time. What im thick at this stuff, I?m gonna put the kettle on here, I don?t like light

With their Warners debut single ‘Lottery Winners On Acid’ (out today) a recent MTV2 Video Of The Week as well as a Zane Lowe Single Of The Week, the upcoming tour represents a last chance to catch The Crimea before they go stellar. The dates are:


25th – London 100 Club


1st – Cambridge Soultree
2nd – Peterborough Met Lounge
3rd – Norwich Arts Centre
4th – Hastings Crypt
5th – Brighton Freebutt
8th – Liverpool Academy 3
9th – Leicester Charlotte
11th – Northampton Soundhaus
13th – Wolverhampton Little Civic
14th – Bristol Fleece And Firkin
15th – Sheffield Boardwalk
16th – Leeds Cockpit
17th – Carlisle Brickyard
18th – Manchester Academy 3
22nd – Nottingham Social
24th – Dundee Reading Rooms
25th – Inverness Raigmore Hotel
26th – Aberdeen The Tunnels
27th – Edinburgh Venue
28th – Glasgow ABC 2


1st – Newcastle University

Tickets are priced at ?7 for London and ?5-?6.50 for regional shows.

Interview by Jeremy Chick for Subba-Cultcha, 02/01/06.

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10 Responses to “Reviews, Interviews, SXSWs…”

  1. Denyer says:

    My thoughts, for what they’re worth…

  2. Christopher says:

    "there were times when i was cruel, played kiss chase to the death with you"
    and add "anger brewed" for the second.

    the long time coming bit is just davey repeating "feel kinda kinda kinda… good right now". :o )

    "first you just think it’ll be cuts between Davey falling through dark storm clouds and walking down a technicolor American street… then the tall black aliens show up"

    sums it up i recon :o P lol.

  3. Denyer says:


    Cheers. :)

    Couldn’t find lyrics to the Marvin Gaye song at all… couldn’t find the original track itself, either, it seems to be quite obscure…

  4. andy says:

    heh chris,

    sorry we have postponed the virgin session to next week.

    great work on keeping everything updated you two

  5. Christopher says:

    wooo! thanks for telling me, i was about to stay up til 3am :o P

  6. Christopher says:

    hey Denyer, you’ll never guess who did the artwork? hee hee hee :o )

  7. Denyer says:

    > ilovedust

    These people are like Midas in reverse.

    > keeping everything updated you two

    Eh, I’m just data entry. :-)

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