Simon Amstell’s Numb, Live at the BBC
WATCH We don’t often cover comedy stuff (we’re miserable and hate laughter), but this iPlayer gem is well worth a watch: the former Buzzcocks and Popworld presenter back in his element doing stand-up. It’s intimate, raw and hilarious. Watch on iPlayer
MUSIC We don’t know how to describe Edinburgh’s Hidden Orchestra without, at some point, resorting to the word Jazz (and putting most people off in the process). So we’ll just say we’re sort of addicted to their particular musical stew, which sort of blends hip hop, field recordings, glitchy electronica and ambient. They’ve worked with Hannah Peel’s Kinetic Fallacy project, and have been remixed by a slew of inventive producers. Catch them at their bewitching best on their Archipelago EP. More information
Whimsical scenes created with real fish heads
FISH HEADS Yes, that. Have a look.
Old photos of New York
PICTURES It’s easy to romanticise retro New York – CBGBs! Woody Allen! Warhol! – but it’s also easy to forget it was once a rough, dark place with a load of problems. This grab bag of found photos from the 70s and 80s – before the city became a playground for rich people – is an eye-opening reminder that (Manhattan particularly) has been cleaned up, ironed out and gentrified into Starbucks-drinking oblivion. Read more
Rush hour on the Beijing subway
VIDEO Get stressed at James Street during the 5pm commute? That’s nothing – have a look at this video during rush hour in Beijing, which will bring you out in a cold sweat. We need a pint and a lie down just thinking about it.
GADGET We’re intrigued by the promise of the Game Stick. This due-to-launch gizmo is an Android powered games console, allowing you to play your favourite mobile games on your telly. It’s set to retail at £79.99, and can download games instantly. Devices like this can stand or fall on one great game (like TowerFall on Oyua) so check out the video. We think they could be onto something…
No Wave launch, Friday 16th August, Elevator Bar
CLUBNIGHT Friday sees the first instalment of Canterbury’s No Wave nights, spotlighting artists (from Arcade Fire to Joy Division), paying homage to their back catalogue, their influences and those who’ve been inspired by them. Should be a welcome addition to the Baltic. The first night sees sets by Everisland Riddance and the No-Wave Liverpool crew, with the night starting proper in September. More information