Google Identity Update

Google Identity Update

Today Google updated their logo and also several related icons and elements of their identity. My first impression was that removing the serifs left the logo looking cleaner, but that the overall feel was on the ‘childish’ side of ‘friendly’.

However, after reading about the main reason behind the change – bringing an identity designed for a single point of use (usually desktop) up to speed with today’s multi-device usage, the look makes more sense.

Interesting how a bit of background understanding can change your perspective about a piece of design! It’s often the images that grow on you instead of instantly striking you as great that have the longest lasting appeal.

’60s Graphic Design – Lubalin & disasters

’60s Graphic Design – Lubalin & disasters


Two books well worth a look this month: Earthquakes, Mudslides, Fires and Riots and Herb Lubalin, American Graphic Designer. from what I’m seen of them so far, both have a very strong thread of ’60s advertising and surf culture through them, So I’m really looking forward to firing up Pet Sounds and getting stuck in.

Both payday purchases are winging their way to me, so expect a full review soon!


Wake up and get this honey

Speaking of disco, this has got me HOOKED. A deep melodic groover from the consistently good Bearfunk cave – Ronda give us “Forlana” on the Hibernation vol. 1 sampler. Have a listen here and get ready for the drop at about 4 mins (how good has sound cloud turned out to be eh?!) And check the bearfunk back catalogue at the label’s home.

Go buy it here or here, or the bears will wake up and come find you.

Disco disco everywhere

As Bill Brewster and Frank Broughton point out in their excellent, must-read history of the beat slinger, the term “disco” used to represent a thriving, edgy and party-loving community – dance music’s first melting pot, which through its own success, was swallowed up by the mainstream. Purged of its soul, the powers that be detached disco from memories of deep, discrimination-free warehouse parties to replace it with images of builders, indians and their mates, and eventually retro themed venues with giant pictures of David Hasselhoff, the overlord of cheese.

The new breed is a far cry from the manufactured drivel – with razorsharp dancefloor friendly edits, reworks and productions sparking a renewed appreciation of the raw energy of early disco music. I don’t really pay much attention to genre labels to be honest. The “nu” tag isn’t well liked, for the obvious reason that it sounds pony (see: nu metal, nu rave). The creators seem to prefer to avoid tags altogether for a scene with no name, maybe to keep the nu disco bandwagon rolling away to one side. Disco-not-disco? Cosmic? Who cares. Genres soon become parodies of themselves anyway, and the best music always crosses the boundaries that we use to identify ourselves more than our music.

The solid underground music arguably never went away. The scene has been bubbling for a good few years now, and recently the mainstream has begun to sit up and take notice again. Inevitably we’ll see more and more disco “lite”, through the time-honoured commercial raping of anything creative. Or, just maybe, we don’t have anything to worry about this time round.

Also check this solid rework that blends in and out with the Loleatta Holloway original (respect to you Mr Scrimshire).

Hello my name is…

I’ve finally fulfilled a promise and handed over a mix to the boys behind the HELLO my name is… clubnight. Good mates, based at my starting ground, Southampton’s Soul Cellar – a bastion of retro and future soul sounds. They’ve had some great names down over the past couple of years, including Al Kent, Domu, Atjazz and Manchester’s very own BE. Deep south indeed. Grab my contribution here:
**Update** Mix won We Love…Space Ibiza’s “Fresh Blood” competition… hang on while I put my trumpet away

Getting high

Apologies for the complete lack of postage recently – I’ve just had surgery on my shoulder so typing has been a bit difficult until now. Lame but all true. Things are destined to pick up, so keep checking back for what’s in store. To fill up a few minutes of your excited wait, here’s an interesting BBC piece from Dave Haslam on Manchester’s shifting cityscape: