Wednesday, 24 September 2003

as soon as City equalised, Lokeren turned into a dirty pub team. hah!

right, i'm off.
"I asked Bill in the past about the famous Penningtons and he remarked that it was unlikely even though the Penningtons are famous for being inbred, his own words."

and that's perhaps not the greatest surprise eh.
he's often disagreeble but strangely readable
- ack.

_and to show both sides, that here below,
aside from the casual xenophobia and the ramshackle nature of riding roughshod over things he chooses to ignore, there is some fairy nuff commentary buried under the hardman bluster eh, to be reasonable.
register of somedisco-nerd interests
gifts etc.

- from Jon i have received handsome cd-rs in a rock/out-folkie vein (Haino, NNCK,etc.), not least some reissued Collins (one of the reissues of the year thus far oh listmakers!) stuff.

- from Simon i have received that gariddge/grime cd-r everyone got of summer 2002 landahn (Sherburne's account)

- from Luke i have received many fine hip-hop and pirate tapes (including a hugely enjoyable eminem version of 'wanksta')

- and last, but by no means certainly least, from Matt i got me some vinyl, a quality slice of ardkore, some blapps posse.

anyway, i don't arselick these cause i've got stuff off them, i arselick them cause their blogs are all dons.
however, when i finally do review luke's tapes (in my own inimitable style) which i promised him ages ago (and when i do, it'll be fockin' shite) you can forgive me the gushing purple prose, most likely.

that concludes the register,
i'm off.
and suburbia, urban spaces, etc., for that matter
oh, i didn't mention it but i'd like to give a hearty HALLO to Angus just for the quality of his views on public transport.

Tuesday, 23 September 2003

you can find out about the register of members interests here.

in the morning, i shall post a full and frank nerdosphere register of interests, in relation to somedisco.

it's best to have full disclosure with these sorts of things...
pace Angus (glad that's cleared up; he always makes my points sound like some well-thought-out trope, rather than the half-baked throwaway shite they actually are. which is nice :)), the thing about I was a bit surprised to see Luka argue that people from the provinces always want to defend the provinces; surely it can work the other way around as well, you can be over-eager to shake the small-town dust of your feet seems OTM to me.
i do it with London vs. anywhere else in England, and Mcr is a good 200 miles north of the Smoke.
just a little thing from Martin Archer over at discus recs that you might be interested in: =
This concert is promoted by Sheffield University with assistance from Other Music. Please try to give it your support, as it's an ambitious and expensive project for all concerned, and its like may not pass this way again:
"Four great pianists doing what they will on two pianos"
Howard Riley
Stephen Grew
Keith Tippett
Pat Thomas
28 Oct Sheffield - University - 0114 2220499
30 Oct Newcastle - University - 0191
31 Oct Bristol - Bristol Music Club – 01793 759109
09 Nov Manchester - RNCM – 0161 9075278/9
16 Nov Teignmouth Jazz Festival - Carleton Theatre - 01626 215666
Contact NMNW 01524 388109 or stephen@grewmusic.freeserve
Four great pianists doing what they will on two pianos.
Howard Riley
Began playing piano at the age of 6. Riley began performing in jazz clubs in the sixties, he also gained master's degrees from the University of Wales, Indiana (US) and the University of York (UK).
Since establishing himself on the free jazz/improvised music scene his work has broadened and gained considerable repute, working as a soloist and duos with Jaki Byard and Keith Tippett, a trio with Castronari and Marsh and two quartets, co-led respectively with Elton Dean and Art Themen. He has made 13 solo recordings and 'always the objective is to arrive at freedom through spontaneity'. In addition his composed works have been performed by the Nash Ensemble, the Welsh String Quartet and the New Jazz Ensemble.
Stephen Grew
Stephen Grew is an instinctive, strikingly unconventional pianist whose aesthetic sensibilities are very much informed by his years as a visual artist. He has worked as an improvising pianist since the late 1980's, performing nationally and internationally, and currently works on a regular basis with Mick Beck and Phillip Marks in their trio Grew Trio.
He has also worked with many other improvisers, Phil Minton, Pat Thomas, Andy Sheppard, Paul Hession, Richard Scott to name a few.
Keith Tippett
Started gigging in Bristol as a teenager, playing traditional jazz and bop. In 1967, he moved to London to try and enter the professional music scene. Since the sixties Tippett has gained the reputation as one of the most innovative and open minded musicians, with a career that has spanned jazz rock, progressive rock, improvised and contemporary music as well as jazz. He has worked with Chris Mc Gregor, Dudu Pukwana, Louis Moholo, Howard Riley, Mark Charig to name a few, Tippett also leads his own highly succesful big band Mujician.
Pat Thomas
Started playing at the age of 8, began playing jazz at 16 after seeing Oscar Peterson on TV. In 1988 Pat was awarded an Arts Council Jazz Bursary to write 3 electro - acoustic compositions for his ten piece ensemble Monads. In 1990 he also took part in Company week playing with Phil Wachsman, Henry Kaiser, Eugene Chadbourne and Louis Moholo. Pat has earned himself a reputation as one of the rising stars in the younger generation of British improvisers, has toured England and Europe with the likes of Phil Minton, Roger Turner and Orphy Robinson.

i dunno the bloke from adam, but sometimes it sounds like his schtick is worth mentioning...
i would just like to recorded that, re. Walker, i made no mention of 'tilt' for much the same reasons as one should never discuss the Velvets/any solo Reed/least of all 'metal machine...' because, well, they are all okay, but the rockcrit way of lurvin' them just beats me sometimes, well, they are good of course, what do i know.

still, there you have it.
i'm at least as much into cds as vinyl or tapes anyway i must be frank so i find this a bit rum. you can get all the walker CDs nowadays for about a fiver a pop.

still, it's quite funny to compare it with Marcello's compilation posts.
not that i'm a fan but i take the standard rockist view and prefer 4 on the whole, though some people argue for 3 more and more eloquently these days.
the best stuff is with the bros. anyway right...

oh, how i must frustrate Jon Notepad with my lack of much visible interest in Big Star/Sonic Youth/&c.!

oh, this and their Eno piece are funny ja.
luke in new york

i wonder if he smokes like luke in london?

Senator Monkheart has decreed, after much consultation with the Red Scholar Badgers that maintain the Scrying Pools of Old Yamashkish, that the two best reviewers of late are Man Like Popular Tom and Man Like Masturbating Matt (let's face it, some of that prose is practically onanism anyway...)
both mr bush and mr blair are friends of mr putin.
i'm not a big fan of the source or anything but the latest issue is really doing its mints.

there's some sort of open letter thing in the editorial about hip-hop's soul, etc., that even if you don't agree with is admirable for the punky spirit.

give 'em that much.
good to see Meme bigging up Nick's sublimely well argued Sheffield thing.

Jon, why is Gutterbreakz not in your links bar yet?!

when i get one, it will be...

i've not yet organised a few thoughts about why Simon is essentially right to doubt Manc counter-capital claims, but i will post some in due course (writing as a proud manc as well no less...)
so not normally a fan, but am a sucker for this here homepage.

for some reason.
Heiden's latest on panda porn is truly inspired.
R.I.P. Hugo Young.
way to go Dubya

- [reneges on promises to spend £9billion over five years, goes for £121million for this year's programmes]

- a grotesque obscenity
_Stephen Lewis, UN envoy, on the lack of cheap drugs

Monday, 22 September 2003

via Angus, this list of facts about the Melbourne public transport system is all very nice (and i'm suitably impressed) but i would wonder why they're so eager to trumpet the bottom point, that their population density is higher than in places like certain American cities (and certainly higher than in Canberra i would think; e.g., currently [i think] the population of the Australian Capital Territory is about 322,000 people in about 919 square miles, while here in the UK currently the population of the West Midlands metro county is about 2.6 million people in 348 square miles, for instance) .

population density, as residents of Bangladesh, Tokyo, Manila, Hong Kong, Indian cities, and south-east England (yadda yadda etc.) will surely tell you, is not the be-all and end-all...
spotted in a shredder: -

BANDA + 1 27 12.5628.280178.002 Jakarta, UTARA.

true dat.

You can blow thousands of heads off with a machine gun but you can’t show a picture of my willy.
_Ewan McGregor discussing cuts to ‘Young Adam’.

he does have a beautiful penis, it’s true. As a ‘women’s’ magazine once observed the way he removes the now used sheath from his spent willy in ‘trainspotting’ is wonderful, a real eroticordinarymundanetendersexy physicality. also the woman who’s his co-star in that ‘the pillow book’ or whatever (never actually saw it meself) is gorgeous too.

true dat, pt.2 :=

‘While I am in favour of cracking down on crime, and have also been harassed by windscreen-washing Romanian asylum-seekers, I would like to ask Home Office Minister, Beverley Hughes, one question: “If you throw failed asylum-seekers out of their accommodation, cut off all their benefits and refuse them the right to work, what do you expect them to do? Live on fresh air?”.
Government policy on asylum is inhumane. Stray dogs have more rights.
At Mustard Tree, we help over 70 failed asylum-seekers with the absolute minimum to stay alive each week. Why aren’t they being sent back? Mainly because they come from countries like the Congo, Zimbabwe and Iraq, where they cannot return, because it is too dangerous. The government accepts that, yet they deliberately deny them even the basics to live on.
Recently, David Blunkett was considering pulling Britain out of the Human Rights Convention. I am not surprised. In August, the courts ruled that Britain is contravening the human rights of asylum seekers, so can we still be considered a humane society?
So far this summer two failed asylum seekers have committed suicide in Manchester. Neither case received as much coverage in the press as the Romanian “asylum crooks”.
_______Dave Smith, liaison manager,
Mustard Tree Charity.

true dat pt.3: =

‘Can you all please stop sending me this ridiculous “Aoccdrnig to rsceearch at an Elingsh uinervtisy…” jumbled-up-letters e-mail? It’s not “amazing”; it’s spam. You’re probably the exact type of people who moan about getting junk mail all the time and yet you’ve all been very easily duped into sending this rubbish to everyone you know. Apart from anything else, it’s hardly revolutionary. Go and do some reading about linguistics and you’ll see that it’s based on work by Noam Chomsky that’s at least 40 years old. And while we’re at it, a fried of a friend of yours does NOT work at Channel 4 and know how David Blaine is going to end his stunt. That’s spam too. Fools.’
Petra Horne, London E1.

oh yeah, and just wanted to say, pace Matt, well obviously,

Folkways (check the Indonesia series!) and Rounder are just two of the best fucking labels in the whole wide world.

thank yew.
interesting to see Jon come out against the new Matmos album.

others who i often have time for, including a handsome new
amg write-up and, elsewhere, claire allfree in this morning's metro paper, write of its charms.

mind you, often do find that Jon's tastes can tend to dovetail with mine.
it's kinda lame of me, but given one liked 'a chance...' so much i often feel like they're going to be hard-pressed to top that.
there again, 'do you party?' is definitely an album of the year thus far for me...

...proceed with caution, vouchsafe.
god, that sounds lovely.
shakes head

what, hadn't he heard of the tamil tigers or something?

{via Chris}
london fashion best
Marcello really is firing about not just Elton, but Outkast too there, some good points.

the scott walker stuff sounds good, glad 'hero of the war' is on there, i'm named after him.
and speaking of the onion, how funny is that DC murder story?

Angus likes the black eyed peas tune, though Chris (incidentally, how stormin' has cnwb been of late?) sounds a note of dissent in his comment there.

i only mention this because my mate Q was giving that tune some stick, for the same sorts of reasons as Chris (the lyrics are undeniably sappy and breathtakingly naive, righteous etc.)
however, i wouldn't like to be too harsh and go too far.

after all, if anything, it's only as 'bad' in that respect as 'Imagine' and the number of trees, when you think about it, cut down to make way for completely hagiographical nonsense on that song since the get go is sobering...
Simon's not really missing anything about mcr no, but i'll explain later.
[local pedant note: Gomez are from Southport, Merseyside, and would probably be horrified to be labelled as mancs]
it's like Matt sez, Hariprasad Chaurasia (flute) is one of the dons of the scene.
his playing is all things to all men.

i've always preferred the sound of a sarod to that of a sitar.
in fact, alongside the likes of the kora, thumb pianos, and a (lush Rhodes of course) that's one of my fave instruments.

the tamboura drone, ooh that drone, it sends shivers down your spine and literally makes your neck hairs stand on end.

few things in the annals of the ol' sounds organised for cultural reasons sphere give me as much sheer pleasure,
that drone, the buzz, god it's esctasies, droney things all over the place, near the end of music for airports, Young stuff, oh it's so so lovely.

a heritage of thousands of years, fantastic.
so much to take in about Matt's ravishing new one.

some good points about 'world' marketing there.

Real World have got a lot of cheese in their catalogue, you only have to look at some of the awful fourth-world fusion type pap they put out to realise that.
also, the most basic {i.e., get those first, one means; though perhaps a couple of the Real World CDs are very good for him in that area too though...} Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan documents are on other places like Ocora even though you always suspect that for the general public he's most synonymous with Real World [think the Michael Brook collaborations, all that Laswelloid type nonsense, yeah rock guitars] because of the slew of his stuff they've put out (incidentally, i can't remember which particular Nusrat release has babbling unintelligible witterings that serve as sleeve-notes from that chod Jeff Buckley {pot and kettle huh} but that's a pile of overheated mac and cheese eh folks?).
i disagree with Matt about Stern's, its had those Mapfumo/n'dour/Soweto &c. mid-priced Earthworks releases last year, and hey i'm such a canonicist that i'd probably agree with Christgau about ind.beat vol.1 to be frank with yer (chopper on the table or wot?!), well i don't really disagree cause there is a lot there that, again, is cheese.

as for Rough Guides/World Music Net/etc., that's a strange one, they do loads and LOADS of crap WOMAD type shite (i.e., the Q magazine of global, Richard Henderson need not apply...), but some of their samplers have much worth. i'm still peaking over last year's Andy Kershaw helmed Haitian guide on CD, although my Bollywood one has long since gone west (well, i can't find the focker anyway).

as for the actual records themselves there, is there no limit to what Ingram cannot?
i heart that chap.
glad to see he just had to get 'call of the valley' in there though, bonus points for that cover i'd never seen before, talk about flash!
Leicester based Sona Rupa (caution, site can be a bit moody, try here for a basic gander) are a good distributors to start with, for some of your introductory needs, friendly postal folk.
Navras is one of the most well-known big boys, by the by, check them out there do.

Ingram indicated in mail he wouldn't !! be doing a fado buyers guide, looks like i'll have to get my arse in gear on that one eh folks?
it's harder to find really decent remaindered global stuff in mcr now the likes of decoy have gone {lovely elegy there, i have seen it described rightly as 'esoteric worldly/obscure place' on the idm list}, but even still...

{hee-hee, Mark's 'a cynical man would say... ...but that's not me' type response there slew me, "I could make a snarky remark about how fitting it is that something concerning London should have ended up in deadlock, but I won't"...}

Sunday, 21 September 2003

i suppose, re. spacemen 3 and that pie metaphor before, i should have said, that its crust would be springier to the touch than that of the possibly oven-blackened playing with fire (scrape the soot off your toast with a knife), and that it yielded more immediate pleasures.
but that doesn't really do it either.

the difference is, perhaps, a tad akin to
bit like having a wet sponge device to stick your stamps with, and then using your own tongue with the device being deprived from you. and then noticing the difference later on, as if in a dream (or, heck, you may just prefer a good old Proustian existential crisis to alert you to the fact you've been sleepwalking for nine years)

all i do know is that i've spent the afternoon listening to
(1) a micro-house compilation
(2) a compilation of DFA productions

and they've both been very enjoyable actually.
certainly the nonstop Woody Guthrie and southern bounce i was listening to this last week had to end soon.
Jon interviews his beloved Pastels.
so editor Schreiber is the only one (well, there's a few others, scott p. is okay, as is that richard san bloke) i really dig very much at pfork but what's that about eh?
"hipsters the world over"
what nonsensical paranoiac ramblings.
surely playing with fire is the landmark (as Simon and Jon have eloquently asserted in the past, if memory serves) for the stretching out of possibilities it offers and the glorious epiphany one can find baked hard therein. the crust of the p.p. might be lighter to the touch, sure, and the initial results tastier, but the other LP more spiritually nourishing (for my threepence).

oh, and whilst i'm here, loveless {obviously} urinates all over pyschocandy
barclays adverts feat. samuel l. jackson
best thing evah

Stephen convincingly disagrees (but that's him, and i'm me)

Saturday, 20 September 2003

So this month’s wire is particularly sweet, with its feisty Miles stuff and a wonderful rhythm and sound chat. The front-cover is one of the best looking for ages too! gorgeous.
And principally of course the cover feature about some great ‘lost’ recordings (they’ve periodically done that in the past haven’t they, the fifty recordings that set the world on fire, that sort of feature, and to be fair they always piss over anything similar elsewhere).
However, to focus in one of the only big name ones they’ve got in there (sure one’s only getting the displeasure of the likes of Jon or Matt or Jay Shorthand by frankly professing ignorance for some of the acts listed, let alone albums {Harry Bertoia? Ric Colbeck [one does know Ric Ocasek heh-heh…]? Abner Jay?}), is there some inconsistency there with the entry about no new york?
i’m sure it was only a few months ago in the same magazine i was reading, secondhand, Lester Bangs’ cautions that Eno had deliberately recorded the outfits therein lower in the mix and been – with calculated forethought – muddying things, making it all more ‘no-wave’. still, what’s it matter anyway eh?
Can’t remember the exact objections (like you can’t tell!) but if it was shapiro in his wonderful “death disco” piece then he wasn’t involved in this latest issue anyway, so that might explain away that…
…glad to see the shouts for Takemitsu, one of my –very- favourite composers and wire favourite Arthur Doyle mentioned in the bit about Noah Howard’s The Black Ark (haha).
The best line is from Marc Masters, discussing one of the dead c records: -
clyma est mort is the dead c’s king of comedy: dark, clever, obscure and underappreciated.
a good point.

Friday, 19 September 2003

finally, this is just a 'nice' inspiring read.
in other news, stockport county have sacked their boss carlton palmer (guardian, bbc).
his sister taught me religious studies at a level.

concentrating is always a problem when you fancy your teacher.
“Statues to politicians tend to get their heads knocked off by hooligans and liberals.”
---Andrew Grimes.

somedisco assesses top of the pops
blimey, practically a regular column now eh, three weeks and running by my count (alas, not next week heh).
Gareth Gates Attempts A Tim Buckley Impersonation In The Opening Bars.
Gates Fails.

Seal kinda sounds like james earl jones fronting an unremarkable house band, one supposes.
Rishi Rich Project feat. Jay Sean are by far the best thing tonight; here and now (and how).
Pink has an enjoyable coiffed drummer and her interesting voice.
my mother used to tell me if one couldn’t say anything nice, don’t say anything at all.
following this directive therefore restricts me from commenting on muse. so moving swiftly onwards.

Ruth Ellis was glamorous, young and beautiful. That’s why I got the flak. Yet three weeks before, I’d executed a Cypriot woman for poisoning three blokes and people ran to shake my hand.
The Cypriot woman was old, fat and ugly.

_Albert Pierrepoint.

below is an editorial from today’s manchester evening news commenting on the deportation of a bunch of Romanian asylum seeker types who turned out to be criminals. so they got kicked out = fair enough [ETA: hmm]. it’s getting transcribed because it’s quite remarkable the normal/sensible/compassionate views on display are coming from a local paper. you genuinely don’t get these sorts of things in some of the national tabloids. perhaps the likes of the sun think it’s obvious and self-evident and don’t want to waste space saying well of course we welcome economic migrants but the trouble is THEY DON’T, they want to KICK ECONOMIC MIGRANTS out because they are, well, confused, or something. alright, so if you’re extreme anti-lifeboat theory or whatever, you might not like some of the guff about family values but at least this is a major (albeit regional) paper saying yes economic migrants PLEASE (practically a watershed in itself).
The Manchester Evening News has never taken the view that the gates of Britain should be slammed shut against all immigrants and asylum seekers.
We live in a city which has, over centuries, been enriched economically and culturally by the endeavours of incomers since the Flemish weavers’ arrived in the Middle Ages. By and large, Manchester has proved a welcoming place for waves of migrants from Ireland, the Jewish Diaspora, and the Commonwealth.
People who have built new lives here, whether they have come seeking asylum from oppressive regimes or as economic migrants, have worked hard and many have brought with them proud family values that, to some degree, have been eroded in this country. But the whole process depends on legitimacy. That’s why we, like the record number of respondents to last night’s MEN readers’ poll, are fully supportive of the action taken by the Immigration Service in chartering a plane to deport 71 failed asylum seekers back to Romania. According to evidence gathered by police and immigration officers, many had been involved in criminal activity.
After the operation, the Home Office said the effective enforcement of immigration law was vital to maintain the credibility of the system. That is absolutely right. If people with no right to be here and blight their local communities are allowed to stay, legitimate migrants will suffer the consequences of suspicion, intolerance and worse from a society turned against what it believes to be a system open to abuse. An immigration process shorn of credibility seems a bitter harvest which political extremists are all too ready to reap.
The Immigration Service acted decisively and was right to do so.

fair and eloquent. compare this to the thrust of some of the reportage the entire too frequently glimpsed in daily express, where one infers a strong subtext is the theme that illegal immigrants are bad, vee bad. madness.
indeed, the phone in question in today’s express is simply SHOULD WE HALT FLOOD OF ASLYUM SEEKERS?
“flood” yeah, it’s all there.
anyone ringing up for yes should be asked what he or she propose. the express has a pathological cowardice on this issue. you know the logical conclusion of some of their phrasing/etc. is DON’T LET IN ANY ILLEGALS bleh-bleh or there’s the contradictory bluster, rightly being appalled by gangmasters exploiting agricultural workers but of course if prices rose on the shelves of tescos or sainsburys doubtless one of their risible ATTACK ON MIDDLE CLASS campaigns would start up again, you can’t have it both ways, you can argue semantics and flows and green cards and pull factors and such till the cows come home, the express is – end result – dealing in lives and legislation and hostile debates.
so, y’know, fuck ‘em (in this area; frankly).

incidentally, to people who think the beeb may nowadays be in bed with migrationwatch, it's salutary to read this.

also, the killer's name sounds familiar. can't place it. but chilling nonetheless.
elsewhere, it's more than a bit tacky given the subject matter one accidently set on, but this here is a legitimate googlewhack no?
{staying with the bbc mcr site for now}

two things to say about the daily express here.
firstly, an article today says that “two children under 15 die from abuse in Britain each week according to a new report – shattering figures that the country has one of the lowest rates in the world.
The number of children murdered in the UK is more than double the level of official records, claims the study by Unicef. The new analysis of western countries suggests statistics fail to reflect the current situation…The league table of 27 nations…Britain is 22nd…Portugal is also a blackspot.”
i always thought the UK was the second safest country in this area (behind Sweden) and even used that information to slag off express columnist mitchell symons a bit ago (among other things and in a roundabout way) so that was obviously bad (although clearly not as bad as the tragic news quoted above here) and WRONG of me and not clever, so sorry there, about that.
the final thing one is going to post here tonight is bad taste arguably (that arguably really isn’t necessary actually…).
now, at least 15 people have already died in the USA because of Isabel, which is of course at least 15x15 lots of differing you can’t say how responses to grief and numbing pain and tragedies and empty renting loss tearing you asunder and the point one’s about to make could be said to probably be extremely mean spirited or hard-hearted or just me being a fucking pompous cunt as per but i submit the headline HELL ON EARTH is perhaps a little in not ~quite~ the right ballpark for a natural disaster (Act of God in a British court right?) with still heartbreaking terrible destroying communities and ties and what do i know about fucking nothing that’s what nothing at all at least i know when to be ashamed of myself i suppose (well, give me a little bit of that stuff anyway) it’s despicable this rant of mine but i’ll finish the sentence in a minute so nevermind but what sort of a tit quibbles about that sort of thing, only i’m only mentioning it cause of another item read in another paper briefly today and –purely_ in relation to that article (wasn’t mentioned anywhere in the express, and only as a very small item in a tiny sub-column in the metro but there you have it). anyway, the article here meant is typed out below: =
Almost 500 corpses have been found in a mass grave in eastern Bosnia. Many of the dead were women and children, some as young as one, and had been shot. The site is the largest unearthed since the end of the Bosnian war in 1995. Most of the victims are thought to be Muslims from the nearby town of Zvornic.
i wasn’t going to post that, but being a foo’ with no editorial skillz ‘ll learn yer…
one, two reasons to heart the BBC of late.
also, marvel here at the bellrock...
dust storm disaster
can't agree with that admittedly.

jeffrey smart he's good though, newtown oval is remarkable (link here).
out of the loop totally the last few days, though have just realised there's been about literally a good 30 blogs that i've been totally hearting in the nerdosphere corner of the blogosphere (and more besides, no doubt).

just wanted to post a few statistics for SR etc., what with his black music etc.etc. things.

boroughs in england that are the 'least white'
[in terms of per head percentages, breaking areas down into regions] {cause, as we all know, vast areas of england are still basically, let's be frank, very "white bread"}
the following tidbits are gleaned from the same parent site, which i shall link to at the end of the bullet list :-
- newcastle upon tyne is the least white place in the north-east (about 7% of its residents are ethnic minority citizens)
- blackburn with darwen is the least white place in the north-west (about 23% " ")
- slough is the least white place in the south-east (about 37% " ")
- bristol is the least white place in the south-west (about 9% " ")
- leicester is the least white place in the east mids. (about 37% " ")
- birmingham is the least white place in the west mids. (about 30% " ")
luton is the least white place in the east of england [bit of a nebulous category that one, not just east anglia] (about 29% " ")
- newham is the least white place in London (about 61% " ") that's Luka's home-borough of course
- bradford is the least white place in yorks. (about 22% " ")

so there you are.
slough and luton, for instance, are both essentially satellites of london anyway aren't they?
anyway, i would suggest anecdotally this is mainly in the case of mcr, but more of facts i know in the case of brum but you'll just have to trust me (*smirk*) {as i can't find them haha...} on that one; anyway, brum and mcr are the most ethnically diverse towns outside of london, even though - for instance, not just leicester or slough or wolverhampton but also blackburn are less white than mcr - but anyway...

source page

one other point that SR said, sure london sprawls more than manhattan perhaps but look at how the eastern edges of queens and brooklyn sprawl i guess, but new york being an older US city than car places like phoenix or LA it would do.
sao paulo or mexico are monsters compared to even london though a bit wishful thinking there though.
link one
second link being a london puff piece from the govt. to show i'm fair and balanced heh...

Wednesday, 17 September 2003

Ashbery verse: -

What is Poetry

The medieval town, with frieze
Of boy scouts from Nagoya? The snow

That came when we wanted it to snow?
Beautiful images? Trying to avoid

Ideas, as in this poem? But we
Go back to them as to a wife, leaving

The mistress we desire? Now they
Will have to believe it

As we believed it. In school
All the thought got combed out:

What was left was like a field.
Shut your eyes, and you can feel it for miles around.

Now open them on a thin vertical path.
It might give us – what? – some flowers soon?

don’t know owt about verse round this way, but do rather like it (above). was wondering if any of the nerdosphere versifiers would like. most people don’t seem to mind Ashbery, although do once recall Luke rudely saying there were only three nerds that rated Stevens above Eliot or something (hazy memory). well, he actually said here and It’s All In Your Mind (and it later transpired, ihavezeromoney too) must digest poetry as we do prose if we felt Stevens could hold a candle to anything, but that’s Luke for you, and besides he was wrong anyway…

…so ja.
Archer over at Discus' latest mail quoted below :-

"Wednesday 24th September 2003
Lea Cummings - guitar, percussion
Murray Johnston - guitar, percussion
Glaswegian 2 guitars + percussion improvised from silence to max intensity
Deep fried electric psychedelic guitar, exotic acoustic drone and a whole toyshop full of cheap electronics
The Grapes,Trippet Lane, Sheffield
8.30 pm. £5 full / £3 concession, all tickets on door"
I note that French president Jacques Chirac reckons that the explosion of 123 French nuclear weapons around Tahiti had no adverse effects on the health of the people living there. Very nice of Mr Chirac, I’m sure; particularly when considering that those distant people do not seem to have much choice in the conduct of world affairs. Clearly, Mr Chirac must have had some doubts about this, otherwise he would not have needed to reassure himself, or the International Atomic Energy Agency.
Who can tell whether similar doubts did not influence previous French governments into risking the lives of faraway and powerless populations – rather than their own?
Since French nuclear testing does not damage the health of islanders, I suggest Mr Chirac ensures all future French nuclear tests to take place in Paris.

__Marie Lynam, London NW10.

the daily express is funny today. one headline reads Britain’s Third World Schools – Now You Can Get A Better Education In Slovakia Or Even Korea.
the express’ jo willey writes:
Britain’s secondary schools have plunged down the international education league table, with former Eastern bloc countries now outperforming them, figures revealed yesterday.
The UK has tumbled from 13th to 22nd among industrialised nations.

sigh surely we’re over “former Eastern bloc” by now?!
the express didn’t clarify whether it was famine-stalked North Korea or Asian tiger South Korea that was now besting Britain in the educational tables and anyone searching the actual body of the article for further information would have searched in vain: it seems either Jo Willey or perhaps Jo’s editor or – well someone at the paper – believes the two Koreas are now no longer not separate – as “Korea” was mentioned again.
so, Britain can’t beat all the second rate countries, appearing a little third world eh?
still, it’s not all doom and gloom – a cursory glance at the ‘table’ itself (not published in the express, but available in other journals) shows powerhouses Slovakia and ‘Korea’ out in front of other (vis a vis third world Britain) similarly deprived developing economies, including notable basketcases Switzerland, Sweden, Canada, USA, Finland, Denmark, Germany, Austria, New Zealand, France, Belgium, Netherlands, Australia, Iceland, Luxembourg, and Italy.

You, of course, already know of the slaughter in Iraq on Friday. You know that eight Iraqi policemen were killed by American soldiers.
You know that the Iraqis were in their patrol cars, clearly marked and with their sirens on, doing their job of chasing crooks.
You know that they made every effort to remonstrate but that, nevertheless, the eight men, along with six injured colleagues, were ruthlessly gunned down.
All of this you know; none of it do the American people know. Thanks to the wily ways of the Internet, I spent several alarming days last week dipping between UK and US news services. On Friday evening, therefore, I listened as British broadcasters broke the horror of this story, and on Saturday morning the press – tabloid and broadsheet – led with it in detail.
In America, it took until Saturday morning to get a mention: that there had been “an incident of friendly fire” and that they were “aware of at least one death”. One dead Iraqi, naturally, made it only to the bottom of the news list – and by the time anyone amended that to eight, it was already relegated to a few terse lines somewhere below the death of a soap star.
Conspiracy, government orders, military interference, self-censorship – who knows?
But if we wonder why the American people are so much more gung-ho about the action in Iraq than the British, I suspect this weekend provided a very pertinent clue.

_Carol Sarler.

one of the things that tickles me about the express’ illegal immigration coverage is that its sources are almost always (if not literally always; hey i’m not sourcing this is a personal blog…) opposition, i.e., conservative party, spokespeople on the subject, e.g., Humfrey Malins and Oliver Letwin, occasionally Ann Widdecombe.
either them, or Migrationwatch, chaired of course by Sir Andrew Green.
it’s funny, but the only time i’ve seen an honest line about Migrationwatch in the express was in a rare moment of candour a few weeks ago, when, during an editorial they admitted “Migrationwatch has an agenda and its figures are speculative”.
admittedly, if not rivalling something – say, hypothetically - like an editorial declaring “Hamas have shown intransigence and may be unsatisfactory negotiators” this one was still a bit of a peach in the FUCK ME? YOU MEAN TO SAY… …REALLY?? NO, GET AWAY?! I MEAN, REALLY?! WELL I NEVER!! stakes…

another thing one digs about the express’ coverage of the aforementioned is the way headlines and actual articles are naively written without any thought for an immigrant side of the perspective – e.g., the notion that someone might pay a people smuggler good money to come over here to work and make something for themselves as opposed to scrounging on our welfare (which, as you’ll admit, is the de facto tab position, it genuinely seems) – so in the end you basically get a load of uninformed wailing, and puerile gnashing of teeth.
people are dying to get here, quite literally, and the express showers us with this shite.
it really isn’t good enough, but you get the press you deserve and writing personally as a vile apathetic cunt who’s gotten tired of letters not getting answered/published/abuse out leafletting/arguments lost with already closed minds, etc.etc. i must admit my moaning about the express is utterly immature as that’s their prerogative and it’s obviously selling papers (judging from the presumably representative letters on the subjects of scrounging asylum seekers, etc., that get published on their correspondence page) for them.

a few weeks ago, Michael Portillo wrote that he felt that British newspaper readers were underestimated at their peril and people generally didn’t pay too much attention to what they read anyway, blah blah.
i am genuinely filled with pessimism about this thesis re. just the Daily Express as practically all the letters they publish on the subject of illegal immigration run along the lines of ‘scrounging freeloaders who need kicking out’.
of course, this isn’t racist, it’s just an unhappy coincidence that all the people writing in (about people from Nigeria, Somalia, Sudan, Iraq, Afghanistan, China, Albania, Armenia, etc.etc.) are presumably white, probably WASP TBH…

a television review in the sunday telegraph some weeks ago made me laugh. talking about the programme ‘welcome to britain’ (BBC1) the reviewer (whose name escapes me, but it wasn’t regular reviewer john preston) wrote (discussing a Ghanaian man, a Mr Emmanuel Naughtie): -
Attempts to enter Britain on “compassionate” grounds are, apparently, a favourite wheeze, but it turned out, upon investigation, that the funeral was genuine and the visas were issued. The programme pointed out – in what had by now become an irritatingly “what’s all the fuss about” sort of way – that the mourners even returned to Ghana.
rather than commenting on that piece of editorialising directly, i think i’ll just let any readers unpick the frankly delicious idiocies at work there…

on the day after (13th august) 16-year-old gipsy Veli Bacari’s story broke and even Humfrey Malins was saying that a minor shouldn’t have been deported (because of the anguish and time involved)
(he’s quoted as saying They ought to be very careful how they treat children and should have anticipated the judge would have wanted him in this country for the appeal. It may be entirely proper for this chap to be in the country for his appeal) – let’s be fair incidentally, Bacari chose to go to Albania, rather than be deported back home to Kosova, as he feared persecution from ethnic Albanians there apparently, anyway that’s by the by – on the day that EVEN Malins said what he said the Express had a phone-in with the not at all leading question (and a not at all awful one) of ‘Should refugees be flown back to Britain to appeal?’.
you have to go to the sun, perhaps the mail very now and again, these days, to see a paper that can be as irresponsible as the express, i’m sure.
as a side note, that day in the same paper “Belgian judge” Freddy Troch was quoted as saying Britain attracts illegal immigrants through deficient legislation. It is astonishing nothing is being done in Britain to stop human trafficking.
oddly, the express didn’t do what the Metro newspaper did and quote M. Troch in full, where he said Britain was to be criticised for its poor immigration laws that attract illegal aliens and offer them no protection.
no, Judge, no!
you’ve got the wrong country guv. all our “illegal aliens” survive on a basic welfare of 900 pounds a week whilst resident tax-paying hard working BRITONS die every day in their thousands for want of fluoridated water…
…i tell ya…
it’s getting so one’s almost (almost, but not quite yet, [you can’t give up on your fellow beings after all can you]) tempted to be cynical about Express editorials, such as this excerpt from one that appeared recently, on the 10th of Sept. to be specific :=
Afghan refugees yesterday told the Home Affairs Select Committee how much easier it was to get asylum in Britain than in the rest of Europe. It was good to hear that our system worked for genuine asylum seekers but it can only mean {snip}
i mean, one’s almost tempted to think you don’t even want genuine asylum seekers coming in, but then you pull yourself up and remember yourself, that’s just some of their (surely undeniably so) racist and or parochial/lifeboat theory (white?) readers perhaps thinking, and how denuded must one be to suspect that it means you can’t have a proper argument with them about some of their valid points, when you’re both gagging for it.


sometimes satire&c. is all the little man has, i know i’ve mentioned this before but that’s why Geoffrey Wheatcroft was plain wrong to pour scorn on the film ‘life is beautiful’.
Hey ho.
on a graver note
true dat

and look at one of the links!

Aussie megafauna
though the new FADS, magazine, even much of the buzzcocks i'm not a massive fan of funny thing personal taste
obviously luke's comments, well i mean my pun below is politically speaking yeah, but centrism itself as he means it, fair enough round my way too,

as for oasis the smiths and new order i've never gotten into them much either so right again
but ACR the durutti column and Buzz Fm are all okay like.
he's right about centrism too, i'm a centrist (you could call it fence-sitting, but there's more to it than that)
dublin london lisbon madrid barcelona paris amsterdam copenhagen stockholm venice florence rome milan vienna berlin prague budapest athens istanbul st petersburg moscow warsaw riga tallinn helsinki (a personal fondness for marseille, katowice, trieste, iraklion)
cairo capetown casablanca dakar rabat lagos dar es salaam
teheran jersualem beijing bombay karachi madras calcutta bangkok jakarta shanghai tokyo seoul hong kong baghdad damascus manila ho chi minh city
sydney (where's auckland or melbourne?)
buenos aires bogota valparaiso (such wonderful buildings!) montevideo (the clubs!)
brasilia (the wide, wide streets!) rio sao paulo santiago lima buenos aires
mexico havana
chicago new york san francisco new orleans (wot no DC, miami, philly, boston, LA, or seattle?!)
[honourables to the zip of montreal and vancouver, and apparently the world's most ethnically diverse city, trano; saw some arrogant prick on some page mouthing off about it being new york - maybe, but it's hard to find that on the internet to be fair; still, london? karachi? jakarta? sydney? vancouver? buenos aires? hey port moresby...)]

if your name's not down, you're not coming in.

maybe port of spain
on another note, what Luke was saying about your own island, that is so ON THE MONEY. i've always ALWAYS wanted that, since i was a small boy.

my own island in the Indian Ocean, populated with the creatures that grew up in evolutionary bio-isolation in what is now Australia, those giant horsey things in south American, Pangea, Gondowonaland or whatever it was (should really google all this eh?!), and see how they fare with ibex, giant anteaters, wooly rhinos, sabre-toothed tigers, giant giant birds.


why are all little boys obsessed with dinosaurs?
of course i love Luka more than anything and of course he's right. it's almost absurd that he's felt he's had to post that.

a (TRUE) story for you, concerning my good mate Qasim.
few are more ardently Manc Nat than Qasim, a man with an appreciation of Lancashire's cricketers, good food, well known in the Mcr scene musically and comedically (oft have i seen truly fitfitfit girls flitting around him, trying to catch his ear), and all that jazz.
Q and i were having a discussion about Brum versus Mcr once and he said something like 'it's all academic anyway mate they're both shit compared to London'.

never a truer word spoken.
of course, if i won the lottery, i would buy that there (plus its two companion volumes) and that.
if i won the pools, i would buy a subscription to apollo magazine.

we are not worthy
will Ingram include call of the valley next week?
its description - referring to massive sales success - as 'the 'dark side of the moon' of hindustani classical' might put him off eh?


Tuesday, 16 September 2003

nas/cam'ron/cormega/jay-z/noreaga/rudy giuliani/hilary clinton/harold bloom/bobby de niro (why not?) FITE FITE
oh nasir
fill your boots
for wh(ich)-at/ever reason(s), things bubbling under at k-punk (priceless comment responding to his Big Apple mate's big writeup!), quark, clap, and worlds are definitely floating the boat marked somedisco interest this morning...
oh dear lord
three links for you, courtesy of the lovely companion : -

- An Attack on Nonprofit Speech
- Health care in crisis
- the vacillations of John Lott

Monday, 15 September 2003

since 1983 (it's not 1995, no, we're not getting all belle and sebastian worship on yo azz...) Graham Swift's East Anglia has been probably the most finely realised, the most wonderfully controlled, the most potently startling, TESTAMENT and DEPICTION and HOMAGE to an English region, btw.

The new requirements will help cut severe delays at immigration control even though we still have to deal with the Pakis.

in 1993 the Prime Minister of Chad was Fidele Moungar. the same year, the president was Idriss Deby (interim) {sic}.

pace something said here, the most affecting piece of writing i read (aftermath) about the attacks on the WTC was something Blake Morrison wrote, in the guardian. can’t find it to link to however.
it was doe-eyed eloquence, powerfully simple, supple and sad.

one’s mentioned di Lampedusa’s The Leopard here previously.
incontestably one of the most remarkable windfalls in 20th century prose, Sciascia said that it was “untouchable, literary perfection”, whilst Eco reckoned that “this would be a joke if the novel were not written with blood”.
the changing fortunes that beset the protagonist’s family keep you gripped, more visceral even than the powerfully squally shrieks of an on-point show from the Oxes.

true dat.

mash dis heah button [note: by mashing dat button, you are hereby agreeing, in whole or in part, to the principle of the wonder of html.TM of the inteyweb transporting you to one of somedisco's three favourite sites anywhere, ever].

what Peter has been saying about the regions and such is fascinating. Of course Luka is right, London has more in common with Tokyo or New York (repetition of one’s self is a theme here today; apologies!) than it does with Rutland or Cumbria or Devon.
The only cities in England that are truly London-like (and they are pale facsimiles granted, but are like London in the way that Hamilton or Calgary more closely resemble Toronto than either Bathurst Inlet or Timmins do) are Birmingham and Manchester.
They have appreciably similar (per head) – unenviable in this way – statistics on crime, especially drugs related and organised crime related violence, etc. They are the only cities with a similarly ethnically diverse population (Birmingham is easily our second most ethnically diverse city; although Leicester or Slough both have larger non-white populations than those two, in percentage terms, they’re less diverse in terms of the various ethnicity’s that call the other towns home).
They tend to have more of the trappings of the city – ‘high’ cultural goodies, money, signifiers both overt (pollution) and hidden (all that concrete that you can be forgiven for not thinking of in the day), more and better clubs than a town the size of Norwich – than other places. admittedly, the other ‘big five’ provincial towns (Bradford, Sheffield, Liverpool, Leeds, and Bristol) have these sorts of things in spades too.
The other truly fair sized towns worth a mention here are Nottingham, Leicester, Newcastle, and Plymouth (in about that order; Hull is the thirteenth biggest town in England).
Mcr and Brum are good at reinventing themselves, and the rest; sometimes not so hot on a lot of the delivery. European money, lottery funds, constant shifting of urban identity (whilst local pride goes down deep in the roots; flesh, concrete, steel, glass, brick, soot, canals, and soil), political radicalism, appalling housing, bickering parochialism, football, curried mutton, sushi bars, fashionistas, white pensioners mistrusting massing illegal immigrants in the city centre – it’s all there.
Brum and Mcr are indeed basically London in miniature; Andover or Worksop or Northwich or Alfreton or Alnwick or Nelson or Kings Lynn are another country. well, don’t really mean that actually, because otherwise we’d be on to all that toxic nonsense about northerners being more friendly, Londoners being less so, bleh bleh.
unsure about Matt’s point about London-centricity being the first bad step on the road towards a 51st state mentality, homogenisation and all that jazz (if, indeed, that’s what he was writing, but it’s difficult yet still wonderful to read Matt for me, so dunno like…).
London is too full of Mary Warnock’s dirt (bloody hell, academia!) out of place, and so on. London is savant, not too cutesy. i really don’t think that London-centricity necessarily will breed acquiescence to a bland American model in pop culture, etc. although, everyone’s known for years that – compared to Manhattan – rural North Dakota or the parishes of South Carolina might as well be the dark side of the moon. America still churns with many fierce, and amazing, and awe-inspiring things, from all over the place. Luka has some Kiwi in him, living there in Newham, and i have a Romany/Glaswegian/Hebridean crofter/all WASP in appearance (ginger white boy you see) thing going on here in the posh bit of south Mcr where i hail from.
one of my closest friends is a brilliant journalist from some interbred sheep-shagging town in (relatively in the sticks, though hardly north Yorks.) mid-Cheshire, so that beats all my theories down with a hearty bitch-slap heh-heh.

*sigh* - i'm in town a few days too late for that.
still, dig the taller de compas de almanjayar/ESG analogies.
gimme gimme some of that tangerine dream meets ali farka toure ferocity;

animal trax backwards in the snow,


devil's mark...
so i normally don't think anything much of waxing and waning about what's going on in your life, especially those tending towards self-absorbed angsty teen harangues, but something about this place intrigues me...
some days all i do is link up Angus but that's a good one.
my mate Dave adores both Radiohead and Sondheim so Angus' closing sentence hit my spot, just so...
yah, surely Sondheim doesn't have any weaknesses? he is the uberarranger.composer.everything.&tobe_loved
what a fucking surprise
quite right

they were the only municipal buildings left at that stage as one understands it; everything else was a stately pile, or such.
(without sounding like a political values writ into his aesthetics system type kinda chap...)
Seal fans argue that the man has a great voice. Well, that's probably true, but since he continues to waste it on unctuous, gutless pap like this, it's a rather empty case. Yes, he sounds almost convincingly funky in places, but that's still about as funky as Roy from Coronation Street scraping hard brown sauce from a plastic table cloth.
__Paul Whitelaw.

i've heard of from the sublime to the ridiculous, but can you have both at the same time?
i draw your attention to tonight's telly schedule: -

Contestants are tested on the religious works of Rembrandt Van Rijn and the Manic Street Preachers."

oh, this is sweet, dude.
i'm glad Jon here opened up his NNCK thoughts, i was getting a bit confused.
i'm definitely intrigued by these Sunburned Hand of the Man types must say.

also glad Jon clarified his views on the byrds' notorious byrds bros (tho' he seems to have taken it down now; perhaps such venerating fanboyism is not tolerated in the shifting-alliances-world of the freeform folkster family?).
that is a fine album.
as Jon knows, however, i'm more a 'sweetheart of the rodeo' man.
the recent CD reissue makes the crucial point in the liner notes when it says that no other major group (you can imagine that milieu, basically Parsons and the other outfits he was involved in, for a start, chief the burritos, acts like the submarine...__etc.etc.) in that neighbourhood immersed themselves as deeply into the country form as the byrds did on that one release.
they certainly did it without mockery, and with a real feel for the genre imbued in them.
there were still some fairly rockin' out tracks on that one (a 'lazy days' outtake on the recent reissue; 'blue canadian rockies') but also gorgeously plaintive stuff - being a sucker for their take on the Louvin brothers' 'the christian life', for one.

their more jallopey take on guthrie's 'pretty boy floyd' i probably don't get as much as the original. the byrds cover is actually the more enjoyable in the immediate sense, as it requires less listening, being more jazzed up as it were, a far more swinging rock/pop vibe.
at first listen, guthrie's is monochrome and bland.

but then the power hits you.
suuuu_ ____perb
one then two extraordinarily fine pieces of NYLPM writing.
Angus got me convinced

Sunday, 14 September 2003

Yeah, so where is Autechre's R&B re-up anyway, "Pass Le Corbusier"?

that man rocks.
what is it with american blokes and all those goatee beards?

they proliferate to the extent Hans Blix should label them a weapon of mass bafflement.

i'm just jealous of anyone, as i am incapable of any facial hair apart from crappy stubble and suchlike.
Piazza, which I had always assumed meant simply ‘square’, had other connotations, as in ‘the team had better start playing better soon because Reggio has a piazza calda (‘a hot square’, which is to say volatile fans or a politically engaged population). The piazza is the ‘city’, its symbolic centre where people (for political or footballing reasons) ‘descend’ to celebrate or protest. The piazza is the soul of local pride, a concept that is close to campanilismo (the affection for one’s own bell-tower). It’s also, sometimes, the place of resistance to outside, even Italian national, influence.

-Tobias Jones.

=How the Strength of All Principalities Should Be Measured

Thus, if everything is taken into consideration, it will not be difficult for a prudent prince to keep high the spirits of his citizens from the beginning to the conclusion of the siege, so long as he does not lack enough food and the means for his defence.

dirty Ligurian water, baked salt cakes, cracked marshland in that nightmarish Po delta, a time of austerity during those neo- this that and the other days; they did have a frolicking Trevi though.

i’ve never been one for Doves (SubSub shenanigans yeah though!), but ‘the cedar room’ will always be with me as something that expands my peripheral vision without either having : -
(a) to take too many pharmaceuticals
(b) to sit through too many often tedious Dead C wig-outs (joke Keenan)

Jon and others have been saying about the humidity and the moisture and the cloistered sensuousness on a lot of their 80s favourites, and this one particular Doves tune does seem to be quite proficient in that department. a bit like massaging your heart till it’s somehow twice usual capacity (Quito dweller from Aberdeen dweller one supposes), especially when the chugging mournful dead bluesy train calls are discerned after about a minute, and then the keening of what sounds like – to me – a hugely amplified, giant seabird call, elegising for tragically lost comrades.
decent song in my middlebrow fancies way anyhow; do not deny ordinary grafters poking through the clouds manually (beautiful sunset) and transforming your week to a glorious Baroque plateau from its shallow and grubby nadir.
Brooklyn’s in the back.

Terrace yobs, “Billy Hunt Billy Billy Billy…look out”.

alright, so i think PJ Harvey’s ‘4 track demos’ is an okay album like (“lick my legs and I’m on fire” and all that).

a brocade-and-tulle dress by Benaz Sarafpour, some tafetta taupe eye-shadow duo, lipstick by Heather Rose, Filigree polish from Shiseido.
dress her in a Jil Sander silk camisole, let us say you have taken 90 minutes to achieve that effect. one would like (a good) three hours to remove these obstacles (given some inverse-ratio law that must exist somewhere about these things), but realistically by that stage things would be getting torn off in under three quarters of an hour, shall we say?
Vanites eye shadow quad?
Noir eyeliner?
The lip-gloss must surely be Magic from Chanel.
Debbie Harry in heaven, happy, with Denis, looking, feeling so good, sweet nothings en francaise.
Richard Long was the artist alluded to before. seen Long once or twice this year, not least in ‘Contemporary Collecting: New Art for Manchester’ at the municipal art gallery where Long placed some stones down, in a bucolic English field, and made like tracks disappearing.
The stones could have been in any muddy, cart-tracked rutted field in an enclosed system around the time of the Magna Carta in a dull Herefordshire March. Flies and horseshit.
Long placed them here and now and wandered off and made one flash on leprechauns primarily. Generally speaking, am not a huge fan of Long, but there was some quiet wonder (were plenty of other fine things at this particular exhibition; one’s responding to something on another blog so let’s be polite, and stick away from the palm-wine which got us in trouble in the past).
There would have been largely indifferent meadowland creatures going about their business just as surely as tiger sharks are hunting their prey now in the shallow blue and the geckoes are climbing the walls at Cuernavaca’s Jardin Borda.
one of the real triumphs of this aforementioned exhibition, incidentally, was the completely mesmeric floating time from Tatsuo Miyajima
The best thing on translation was said by Cervantes: translation is the other side of a tapestry.


damien hirst

one of these days one'll slag him off, quoting that Glaswegian bloke,

but to have been there for 'some went mad, some ran away' i would have done anything for that.

from Jonathan and of course Jon, my statement of members interest before anything else gets started (can't just be one of these malignant fucks always slinging cowpats and not actually putting your cojones on the table now can you...):-

Aphex {SAW 1, RDJ, 'we have arrived' [QQT, TTQ], 'digeridoo', 'come on you slags'}
'Pusher (not "". heehee hello ROB ZOMBIE'S KID WAS IT?!) and that one episode of the x-files called that weren't it... {...Rotted One Note, Maximum Priest, Big Loada, UFO's over Leytonstone}
Dour Rochdale Outfit wannit {Tri Repetae++}
Mr Bungle {most things to be frank; i ain't a fan per se, but you gotta admire, well, it's all good; mind you i used to a big FNM fan anyway so anything Patton does gets a least a polite nod round my way; any more semi-colons?!}
that'll do for now,
sadly i don't really feel much of BoC these days at all, rather agreeing with J. Dale there, my loss i know, still.
"you ain't got the do re mi...oklahoma, kansas, georgia...a paradise to live in and see but believe it or not you won't find it so hot if you ain't got the do re mi"

i like damien hirst me, his new one sounds all good fun to these ears and eyes; if martin gayford likes it then that's generally fine by me.
some of the best exhibitions i've seen this year in mcr have been at the smaller (and some undeniably hip) galleries like the international 3 or the comme ca but you can bet come years end the only mancunian ones i'll remember will be in the bigger places.
i can almost guarantee that gardening one at the NPG would be in any running.
funnily enough, an artist Aus Fish was bigging up last week i've been seeing a fair bit of this year, so yeah that was odd.
'They drank Diet Coke together, compared notes on the latest deadly feuds between Iraqi sheikhs and shared jokes as if they were old friends. Tall, bearded and dressed in white robes, the Iraqi rebel-turned-politician chatted long into the night one evening last week with the British officer in Army fatigues.

In the lawless south-eastern Iraqi province of Maysan, near the Iranian border, Karim Mahoud al-Mahamadawi - known universally by his nom de guerre Abu Hattem - and Lt Col Mark Castle, commanding officer of the King's Own Scottish Borderers, have forged a close and successful working relationship.

It was the end of a typical day's trouble-shooting. Lt Col Castle mentioned a firefight between rival tribes in a nearby town. "Let them kill each other. We have bigger problems to worry about," said Abu Hattem, laughing but only half-joking. "Oh I can't do that. Security means security," replied Lt Col Castle.

Their rapport is in stark contrast to the lack of co-operation between supposed allies elsewhere in Iraq. On Friday, US troops shot dead 10 coalition-trained Iraqi policemen and security guards in Fallujah, north-west of Baghdad, in the latest communications failure.

Yesterday hundreds of angry mourners chanting anti-American slogans began burying the dead Iraqis, who had been mistaken for rebels fighting the US occupation of the town. In Maysan, by contrast, Abu Hattem and Lt Col Castle work closely to solve tribal disputes, tackle looting and smuggling and calm tensions between locals and British troops. Their co-operation helps explain why Maysan has been spared the worst turmoil of post-war Iraq.

"Life would be much more difficult for us were it not for Abu Hattem," says Lt Col Castle, who has had to learn fast about the often bloody local tribal rivalries. Abu Hattem repays the compliment. "My relations with the British are very good," he tells me. "As you can see, we are like brothers. Lt Col Castle works day and night to sort out the problems of Maysan. He understands us and has good co-ordination with us."

As charming as he is savvy, Abu Hattem cuts a dashing figure, invariably dressed in immaculate robes covered by a thin brown cloak edged with gold braid. Some days, he drops in to see Lt Col Castle at the former Iraqi IV Corps camp near the provincial capital, Amara; on other occasions, as on Thursday evening, the British commander visits Abu Hattem at his riverside offices in the city.

Before and after Lt Col Castle's visit, petitioners lined up to see Abu Hattem in his spacious reception room. He spent three hours with sheikhs and commoners, discussing everything from unpaid wages for former judges to the role of the city supervisory committee.

One moment, he was listening intently, flicking prayer beads around his fingers and fanning himself with a piece of paper; the next he leaned forward, maintaining eye contact and touching the knee of his guest as he dispensed wisdom and guidance. A Western politician could not have been better coached by an image consultant or spin doctor.

His intervention has helped ensure that violent flashpoints have not spun out of control. Fusilier Russell Beeston was killed during an ambush north of the city last month and, in June, six Royal Military Police officers were shot dead by a mob in Majar. On both occasions, Abu Hattem's prompt arrival on the scene helped calm local tensions.

Abu Hattem, 45, earned the respect of the people of Maysan - and the sobriquet Lord of the Marshes - for his exploits as leader of a Shia rebel faction in the southern marshland after his release from jail in 1986. Before he took on his liaison role with the British, he had been looking forward to a quiet life after his forces helped liberate his home town from Saddam Hussein in early April.

After six years as a political prisoner and another 17 as a guerrilla fighter, he planned to "retire", find a wife and start a family. Now those plans are on hold. Abu Hattem has emerged as an increasingly polished performer on the national stage, where he sits on Iraq's 25-member Governing Council, and chose to address Donald Rumsfeld, the US defence secretary, about the country's security crisis during his recent visit to Iraq.

His close ties with the British have earned him enemies in post-Saddam Iraq. Protected by a small coterie of bodyguards armed with Kalashnikovs, he laughs off the death threats, which have not deterred him from mediating in fractious disputes: earlier in the week, British troops arrested a tribal leader in the town of Al-Qurnah, sparking two days of protests and grenade attacks on a coalition office there.

Nonetheless, Abu Hattem backed the British. "He was a bad sheikh who had a long history with the old regime," he said. "He was forming a militia to fight the coalition and he was sabotaging the power network. That is why they arrested him."

In June, Abu Hattem insisted he had no desire to remain in public life. Asked about his change of mind, he said: "As a son of this city, it is my duty to do my best for its people." A moderate Shia who kept his distance from Iran during his guerrilla war against Saddam, Abu Hattem backs the US-led occupation for pragmatic reasons, even though he remains critical of many coalition policies.

"If I told the foreigners to go back where they have come from, what could I do for my people? Could I offer them reconstruction? Could I bring investment? No, of course not. So it would be nonsense to resist the occupation.

"We can gain our sovereignty in stages. We had to be patient for 35 years under Saddam. Now we have to be patient again. I have to be patient, too, because only when the occupation ends will I have time to find a wife."

___Philip Sherwell.
manfred mann's covering 'john hardy' and such which you like done by leadbelly is like the boss covering woody on the ballad of tom joad one because they are the same thing there and all four are brill.
stuff like that one he did with rick rubin where he kills delia and plenty of the dark humour on the folsom album like getting flushed away from sight, and dogs, and other stuff like sending a picture of mother, and early Sun rockabilly stuff, and '25 minutes to go' cracks one up, but yeah '...san quentin' proves the man as legendary stature.

lightnin hopkins and charley patton and bukka white and woody guthrie and leadbelly heck even merle (not berle) yeah.
Craner is right, this place just has it.
'The first time James Saah fired an AK47 the recoil tossed his tiny frame into the air and he fell flat onto his back, knocking the breath from his body. Then, he was eight years old: James has learned a lot since then.

Today, at little more than nine, the emaciated and bedraggled boy is a veteran soldier of the brutal four-year war in Liberia that claimed the lives of more than four million people. He has spent the past 12 months as a drug-fuelled executioner with the government forces, and he learned to revel in his work: James's job was to finish off with his Kalashnikov the rebel captives after they had been tortured and maimed.

Now, with Charles Taylor, the warlord who became president, exiled in Nigeria and the war at an end, James is just one of the hundreds of homeless child soldiers who flock daily into Monrovia, the capital.

With almost 70 per cent of both the government and rebel forces made up of boys under 17 who were snatched from their homes and forced to fight - though often the "fighting" consisted of little more than butchering mothers and their babies - James is trained for just one thing: to kill. He can barely read or write; he has no skill save that of a marksman.

Young boys such as James became prized by the warlords for their fearlessness and their willingness to kill. With the war over and their families dispersed or unwilling to take the boys back, the child soldiers' only hope of resuming any kind of normal existence is three shelters funded by the British charity Cafod (Catholic Agency for Overseas Development) that aim to reintegrate the boys into their communities.

It is a tough challenge: the boys have become outcasts in their villages, an uncomfortable reminder for government and rebel forces alike of the savagery and brutality that they drilled into young minds.

Last week, as James crouched under a makeshift hut, sheltering from the torrential rain that marked the beginning of the country's rainy season, he plucked at the tail of his tattered and outsized T-shirt - the only clothing he possesses. His eyes glued to the ground, he says bleakly: "I can't remember the last time anyone kissed or hugged me - but my commander would praise me when I fought well. He called me a big man."

For James, his once loving family life is just a distant memory: for the past year his only comfort has been the praise he received from his army commanders when he killed on their behalf. It is difficult to shift his now deeply ingrained belief that to fight is the only way to prove his worth.

When he finally escaped from the army, the nine-year-old was nearing starvation and had a gaping wound on his left shin where he had been shot during a fire fight. Before he was snatched he had lived with his mother in a small village "one or two days from Monrovia" - he wouldn't be able to find it on a map, even if he could read one.

It was his bad luck that he was playing in the road outside his village when the local militia passed by on a recruiting mission. He was dragged into a car at knife point. James had joined the army and has not seen his mother since.

The boy's first taste of warfare was to kneecap a prisoner from the rebel Liberians United for Reconciliation and Democracy (LURD) forces. "That was the first time I shot anyone," he said. "I didn't feel bad, I felt good. When you are on the front line you have to be a big man. If you were not brave in our group you were seriously punished. One soldier had his arms cut off."

As he sat at a makeshift desk in Cafod's West Point shelter, where he receives psychological counselling as well as several hours education each day, James says calmly: "One day I executed two people. One was beaten and when the commander asked for a volunteer to execute him I put my hand up. The other was a rebel soldier whose elbows were tied together so that he had difficulty breathing. When the commander asked who wanted to finish him off I pushed the man into the bush and fired three rounds into his chest. That man never got up."

Drug taking, says James, was common. When he took Dugean (a cocaine-like substance) he felt like he "wanted to kill".

"I don't know how long I fought for," he says, his eyes, cold at first, becoming listless and blank as he tells his story. The horrors of his life will be there to haunt him for years to come. "All I know is that my hair was about eight inches long by the time I left. Any time we were going to the front line we would feel afraid, would want to run away. But you couldn't. The only time I was happy was when I was shooting. But I still have my bullet wounds and I still limp."

James's opportunity to escape came when he found himself left alone in a car. He simply leaped out of the car and ran. His superiors, knowing that boys his age were two a penny, did not even bother to follow him. He does not know if his family are still living in his home village - and isn't sure they would accept him after his year in the army if he were to return there. "But I do want to live in a family again," he says wistfully. "I want a cuddle from my mother."

Several miles away, at Cafod's Red Light shelter, Paul Johnston, who insists that he is 13 but looks little more than 10, was given refuge a month ago. He smirks with pride as he says: "I think I killed about 30 people." Holding up his fingers to count he says: "Ten were soldiers, the rest were civilians . . . I have killed children. They were aged from nine to 12. And I killed a one-year-old baby that was on its mother's back. The nine-year-old was a girl who would not give me money to buy tobacco."

Like James, Paul was regularly supplied with drugs. "When I was high and saw the dead bodies of those I had killed, I felt fine," he shrugs. "But when the drugs wore off I felt bad."

As he talks, Paul swings his legs under the table, rocking back and forth. He had been walking to school when he was snatched. "I was taught how to fire a gun," he says, his voice colourless, his face expressionless. "But I developed my own system to grab people and kill them. I used to kill people who weren't part of the war and take things from their houses that we needed."

Paul, determined to sound brave and tough, raises his head defiantly. "I did, I felt fine killing people," he says. "I felt really good. We would see people escaping with mattresses on their heads and we would take their goods and execute them." As he falls silent, Paul's defiant gaze drops. Drugs, he admits, took the edge off the killing. "I smoked opium, anything. With that I felt good, it felt good to kill."

His high, child's voice falls silent again. He is thinking, he says, "of before". "I was in third grade when I was taken," he remembers. "I used to go to school every day." Then he falters, his voice becoming little more than a whisper. "Do you think I could ever go back?"

Behind the shelter, on a main road, a group of teenage girls straggle by. Girl soldiers - older than the boys, mostly in their late teens - were among the most ferocious who fought in the war. Fearless but highly fashion conscious, they called themselves the Black Diamonds, forming into 30-strong bands who fought on the front lines. Looking up, Paul stares as the former women soldiers saunter by. He has learned to fear their savagery.

Few of the boys have been able to trace their families but Cafod, in partnership with the Don Bosco Homes, which helps former child soldiers, is confident that, in time, they will be accepted by locals.

The shelters are basic - little more than wooden frames covered in tarpaulins to keep out the rain. But they are secure and safe. The boys sleep on mattresses and their days are filled with school classes, sport and counselling.

Fiona Callister, who works with Cafod and is currently in Monrovia, is convinced that, in time, the boys will learn to live in the community again. "Their stories are both horrifying and heart breaking," she says. "They may have been involved in atrocious acts but they are still very much children whose innocence has been stolen.

"Unless they are treated with compassion these children will never realise that they can find a peaceful, happier way of life. And until they are taught how to live peacefully, Liberia will not be able to build a successful future."'

__Olga Craig.
to be fair to Luka, re. the regions and such, he wasn't just talking about pop music, he's talking about galleries and jazz and roots venues and museums and swinging bridges and architecture and openness and transport and eating and conversations about eating and conch shell and literary spats and scientific rigour and nursing schools and immigration and the fourth estate and the palaces and besides he's all bigging up Hackney market before it closed, the antithesis of the time out ethic apparently.
what Matt says about homogenisation is some good points though, but the way east is misrepresented and unrepresented and underrepresented and patronised and so on by people who live ap west must be irritating for Luka, heck it'd irritate me and oh by the way k-punk is having it over clapclap at the moment re. this whole US/UK pop argument and how bossin' it was that quarks and charms post about NWA getting bigged up from the NYT?
"Gareth O'Connor is dead, secretly murdered by the IRA earlier this year, his body buried somewhere along the Irish border. But hush, don't mention the war, and say not a word of Gareth O'Connor. The delinquencies of the peace process must not be adverted to in public, as Sinn Fein-IRA is allowed to hold on to its armouries of guns and double standards.

Of course, Gareth O'Connor (RIP) should be deeply embarrassing to the republican leadership, for his fate testifies to the a la carte manner in which Sinn Fein-IRA follows the rules of the peace process. But instead, they've got away it with it, as usual: Colombia, the Castlereagh break-in, the Stormont intelligence operation against the British, Irish and US governments, the many arms importations, the punishment beatings, the occasional murder, have occurred since the Good Friday Agreement, and all without any political consequence for Sinn Fein.

Is it surprising that the Shinners felt free to kill and bury O'Connor, a dissident republican, not far from where Irish police are now looking for the body of Colomba McVeigh, abducted and murdered by the IRA 28 years ago? The Shinners pay no price for their numerous breaches of the Good Friday Agreement, because it is apparently accepted that burying bodies is what they do. Indeed, in their own quiet, understated way, that's what they've always done.

In the Troubles of 1919-22, unknown numbers of men vanished off the face of the earth, courtesy of the IRA, many being buried secretly. Two captured police officers were dealt with in another way: they were thrown alive into a gas furnace in Tralee in Kerry. In the summer of 1922, the IRA openly abducted three Cork Protestants, Captain Herbert Woods MC, MM; his father-in-law, Thomas Hornibrooke; and his brother-in-law Samuel Hornibrooke, and tortured and murdered them before secretly burying them.

Not a single Irish newspaper reported on the fate of these men until I did in a column in The Irish Times in 1989. Indeed, it could be said that I have a certain proprietorial interest in the missing of the Troubles. I suspect that it was an article of mine in The Spectator in the early 1990s that first drew the British public's attention to the missing of the more recent Troubles.

No doubt, the Shinners would prefer the press not to refer to these little house-cleaning operations; but as it turns out, no one seems to object very much, apart from the families, of course, and a few journalists, and they can be safely ignored. So the Shinners got away with the secret murder of Jean McConville in 1972, and the man who ordered her abduction and burial these days regularly takes tea in Downing Street. Moreover, the various governments in Dublin, London and Washington can usually be relied on to give an indulgent, boys-will-be-boys wink every time the Shinners break the rules.

Sometimes Sinn Fein leaders are asked in the course of television interviews about the Disappeared (a convenient short-hand for the abducted, tortured, murdered and buried). Their faces immediately become grave, and they urge that this is a matter of great sensitivity, that there's no point in endlessly raking over the coals, and now is the time for "closure" (Shinnese for the total amnesia which consumed the Woods and the Hornibrookes).

Mention, however, Bloody Sunday, or military collusion with loyalist paramilitaries, and suddenly it's not closure that the Shinners want but disclosure, and wide-ranging, endless inquiries. But then move on to "Stakeknife", the British agent at the heart of the IRA, and the talk is again of sensitivity, of drawing a line, of not pointlessly going back into history.

But why shouldn't the Shinners talk like this? No one in government ever reproves them for their numerous departures from intellectual or moral consistency: indeed Shinner leaders are probably able to swan into Downing Street with their own personal swipe-cards, courtesy of MI5. And because no one in the three governments participating in this morally-depraved peace process ever publicly announces that Shinners must stay within the law - oh and by the way, no more killing and burying people - they never really understand the rules which the rest of us live by.

So the Sinn Fein candidate for the next European elections, Mary Lou McDonald, recently gave the keynote speech at a memorial in Dublin to the IRA-man Sean Russell. This quisling died - in agony, I trust - on a U-boat in 1940 on his way to Ireland to help set up a Nazi puppet state. Yet the Shinners have so little understanding of European values that they think their candidate for the European Parliament can openly revere a pro-Nazi, simply because he was a Shinner.

The political cultures of both islands have been so corrupted by concessions to the Shinners that half the IRA Army Council is now elected to parliament in either Dublin or London. Heaven knows, maybe the Lords beckon next for some of their leaders. For their coat of arms, might I suggest a pair of crossed spades?"

_Kevin Myers.

Friday, 12 September 2003

actually, what do i know perhaps the express is the world’s greatest newspaper.
yesterday, you could have learnt of scrounging gypos, nubile daughters of the Stones modelling underwear, a chance to win an audiobook on English heritage (an audiobook! celebrating England!), and some insightful things about one of these pop idols type programmes.
THAT was ALL on the front cover.

you don’t get that on the independent do you?

girls being positively filthy discussing the sucking of chunky Kit-Kats (cheers Patrice, -used- fivers ta pal).

well, now.


‘I walk the line’

baritone, crawled into a cave, crying, faith and mother and drugs and mules and horsehair whips and the wireless for older readers, that clicketty-clack spacing in his stuff, so inviting, let’s fall in lurve.
lace and chantilly and sometimes an older face closing in on her spaces, they understood that and so does he, quite quite remarkable experience.

i sometimes wonder if Reynolds' opposition to Guided By Voices is because he's (??) a Bloom disciple? after all, you can't read/listen/etc. to everything, so clearly you have to make choices.
Bloom normally labours this point (because he's painfully aware you're probably reading Dave Eggers or Alice Walker when you could be reading 'the decameron' or Turgenev) a lot as if to apologise that you're reading him and so not reading Whitman or Dickinson or huck finn as it were.
nice fella.
i don't feel GBV either mind, but there again i don't particularly feel Big Star eh Dale?

mickey finn the dnb'er or the one in t.rex?
up to you bud.

i walk the line....because you're mine, i walk the line
old white gospel, mist hugs the ground, tears roll down our faces, it's all very pseuds corner here eh? still, good fun, like Paul Anka 45s i'd venture.

'ring of fire'
I got a taste of American paranoia post-9/11 in New York. I was quizzed why I had Pakistani stamps in my passport. ‘ You have family there?’ asked the immigration officer. ‘No, I’m a journalist.’ ‘Why did you go then?’ ‘To do some journalism,’ I replied. I was sent to a second room with a few other Arab-looking people. ‘What are you doing in New York?’ an officer asked. ‘I’m on holiday,’ I replied. ‘Well, have a good time then.’ Even so, it does get a bit wearing. As you exchange looks with the other darkies, you wonder are we to be forever suspects?
_Krishnan Guru-Murthy.

actually, primal scream are something of a one-trick pony now one comes to think of it. the Weatherall sure yeah great, but come off if you try and possibly sell me exterminator (sic, i know but Not Doing This Correctly Thusly All The Time doesn’t not NOT make one an e.e. cummings fan) or anything else, flaccid when it’s supposed to be ferocious, it’s hardly Noxagt or Meshuggah or the Suicide debut, all these reference points you come up with and they’re a big part of some Brit-rock canon but they’re just shirking their duties one feels.

our kid bought the likes of 2manydjs because of appearances in the NME. don’t really rate them too much anyway (Reynolds seemed to nail it on mash-ups) but yeah, nme, goin on there eh.

POD, now they are good, how many times do you get props to John the Baptist and ‘Chaos A.D.’ from the same outfit?
not many, i’d warrant.

‘totp’ tonight was fine, Maiden UNIRONICALLY brill, Sting crooning lovely sound, the bloke presenting he good do a pole dance for ME BABY (phwoar…) nice chirpy cheeky chappie indeed, Lemar is all good fun, a decent Black Eyed Peas, all good eggs in conclusion.
couple of sore points though.
Firstly, Starsailor are crap, please give up and go home (Libertines have one fit drummer and three identikit indie boy frontpeople incidentally).
Secondly and lastly and finally but not of least import but as popjustice have already hilariously noted, the White Stripes cover of ‘…do with myself’ is horrible, it’s a mauling, it’s awful, god terrible. My dear mother discussing Dusty and Dionne, set off on Hal and Burt, how could you?
nice video mind. muahaha.
hiya Pete, thanks for the Petrarch quote, Whitters and Dave yeah Lampard yeah i know.