A Day in the Life of … MOLOTOV JUKEBOX

 a.k.a gyp-step shambolotov! Recorded by the fantabulous Natalia Tena


Our guitarist Adam throws down £40 in my lap, (I’m wearing a one piece red panda outfit, he is wearing black) ‘I’ll give you £40 if you punch me in the face, go on!’ I spend the next hour trying to take a running jump into his face with my fist but can’t do it. We find this very funny as does Lauren, my flatmate grinning asleep on the sofa and Sam, who has entered in a full penguin outfit. Our manager Sirius arrives to get us all up and ready to move this undisciplined chaos on the road because ….


WE HAVE GO TO WALESFOR A FESTIVAL!!! Sirius says he’ll drive. When we finally manage to get into the car, I sprawl in the back. We stop to get cider, hummus, Boursin and baguette (standard molotov snack) at Tesco, then I pass out.

I wake up just as we arrive. Sirius informs us that we’re no longer staying in the promised country manor; we’re in tents … kill me now! This festival, ‘Landed’ is new this year and run by an amazing specimen of man, Aubrey (or Brie as I like to call him). He apologizes for this mishap but, luckily, the tents are BEAUTIFUL! Angus, Tom and Adam finally arrive and I throw at pot noodle at them to celebrate. We all settle in as Brie hands us the local cider, (actually) called orgasmic cider and we all look at the sheep, lambs and hills surrounding us, approve highly and continue drinking.


It’s nearly time! I smoke and feel cold and tired, WHERE IS THE ADRENALINE?! Max eats half a burger and starts to feel terrible, but Sam devours the rest and says its fine. Tom is worried he’s completely out of tune and asks me obsessively for an A (everyone has to tune to me as my accordion is out of tune, not only with the world pitch, but itself!) We walk on stage and I start doing star jumps in order to be able to brave the chill while wearing a little red number. We do a line check which brings the crowd in. Suddenly … WHERE IS MAX!!?? The drum stool most definitely is not seating a Max…..THE BURGER!! I start telling the crowd that they have to dance or find the entrance of this festival immediately and f*** off, which strangely makes audiences warm to you! Tom wants yet again another A (IT’S FINE!!!) Sam is about to go look for Max when…. HE APPEARS! We can finally begin!

There is something to be learned about doing gigs at the end of your physical tether; you’re just trying to get through and you realise how much fun you’re having and how easy it is to talk to the crowd and make jokes when something goes tits up, (like when we threw in some chord clangers or Sam suddenly slipping out of tune he’s doing his violin solo!) and you realise that the audience can enjoy the show all the more for these little moments. Still …WE SMASHED IT!!! The tent was heaving by the second song and by the end all the boys’ shirts had sweated through. Sirius was joyful we had a new song ‘Don’t Panic’ which we dedicate to him trying to manage this band of individuals with a penchant for being unmanageable. Applause, encore, repeat.

We assemble to have our post drink/cigarette on a dishevelled quad bike. There is nothing like that moment of stopping after that gig, putting down the weight of the accordion and just breathing, not talking and sitting on anything. All step to campfire where I get so sleepy; my throat and limbs hurt but more smiling banter takes me into my dreams to the sound of Dub-Step, the festival season has started once again…!


Rebelle meets … Natalia Tena

Today, the final instalment of the Harry Potter saga hits UK cinemas. While it may be a sad day for Potter fans, out of the ashes of J.K Rowlings worldwide phenomemn rise a bundle of stars ready to light up British cinema. One of these is the awesome Natalia Tena!

And what’s not to love about Natalia? Enthusiastic, upbeat, quirky, witty, hilarious and bags of fun, the English actress has got quite a bit in common with her Harry Potter character and, much like Tonks, the hugely talented Tena has a few tricks up her sleeve! As well as acting, (this year she’s also starring in films ‘You Instead’, ‘Bel Ami’ and HBO’s fantasy-drama series ‘Game of Thrones’) she’s also got one hell of a voice and can bash out a tune on accordion with plenty of gusto, both of which she does frequently with her band ‘Molotov Jukebox’.

In an interview for NOIR magazine, I chatted to the lovely Natalia about Harry Potter, filming at festivals, the ideal recipe to a rocking Gyp-Step band and doing sex scenes with ‘Twilight’ hunk Robert Pattinson …


Hi Natalia! How did you find filming The Deathly Hallows: Part 2?

 Well, it felt like part 1 and 2 were the same as the filming ran into each other. Overall, I spent all the times I wasn’t filming laughing at everything funny Lupin had to say and generally catching up with the banging Potter cast and crew!

 How did you feel about what happens to Tonks in the final film?

Obviously loved it, every actor likes the idea of a death scene! I like the fact she shoves into minimum time all the big phases of life – love, birth, death … done!

There’s a big battle scene at the end of the film, did you get to be part of the action?

The battle scene was epic due to the fact that such an integral set had been demolished like a titanic car crash; that was a bizarre sight! I wasn’t really part of the action this time, shame because I thoroughly enjoy prancing around shouting and imagining random things in front of a green neon screen!

What’s been the best thing about being part of the Harry Potter phenomenon?

Firstly, getting to meet its crème de la crème crew and cast. Secondly, owning a wand and shouting in Latin and getting paid for it, and thirdly, meeting kids that actually believe you have magic powers and threatening to turn them into frogs if they don’t do their homework!

You’re about to make lots of Robert Pattinson fans very jealous in the upcoming Bel Ami! What can you tell us about your role and getting ‘down and dirty’ with Rob?

Basically I play a syphilitic prostitute inParisat the turn of the century! Rob and I used to be good mates for a brief period before he shot to Vampire fame. I remember him taking me out for drinks before going toAmericato film it, saying “yeah, going to do some Vampire movie, see you when I get back.” Little did he know how huge it was going to be! Seeing him again was great and I always find sex scenes very funny! You’re there making sex noises, thinking about the fact that all the crew are respectfully trying to do their job delicately to not make it hard for you … it makes me want to crack up every time! It’s about as sexy as watching paint dry. The daunting bit; knowing that lots of people (including my Dad) are going to see it!

You also star as a rock chick in You Instead set at T in the Park, can you tell us about your character Morello?

Morello is the lead singer of a fem-rock band The Dirty Pinks and is feisty, cynical and funny yet vulnerable. She’s been working hard to make her band get somewhere and thinks very little of Adam Elva, the lead singer of a rival band, to whom she gets handcuffed in a strange twist of fate. But love can flourish between all sorts of unlikely people and they realise they have a connection that is above their antagonistic banter!

How did you find shooting over four days of intense guerrilla style filming?

Literally, it was exhilarating, exhausting, hilarious, adrenaline-fuelled madness! I reckon I can speak for everyone in saying that that Monday morning wrap held such HUGE sense of achievement, it felt monumental! More than anything, it had to do with the cast, crew and director we had. Every single person there made it possible and David MacKenzie is a relentless man! Extreme acting was very much the consensus of the project: there was lots of improvising, we had the script as our anchor but from there we messed around, seeing what each moment had to offer, and we had thousands of extras in festival party mode to play with!

Tell us about your own band, Molotov Jukebox. How would you describe your sound and how do find combining music and film?

Basically, it’s Gyp-Step; a well aimed throw by its individuals and their relative musical styles into a melting pot of chaos, stirred with love, garnished with loud shouting and strong looks, then served warm with massive smiles. Definitely 6 of your 5 a day, fantastic for every muscle used in contagious dancing! With regards to combining, one the best things in life is finding a synergy between the things you love in the hope that they can work together and bring out the best in each other, for your career and more importantly for you those you love.