Wednesday, 18 May 2005

clean forgot the significance of the date until skimming Johann's comments

good news:
on a far lighter note

other fucking superb things are:
Ludacris and Terror Danjah having a chat in what's presumably the latest issue of dazed and confused magazine
Riko's blog,
cheers Dissensus!

Riko's blog Riko's blog

well whetting the whistle for the album or what?!

Monday, 16 May 2005

It is a superb day and the plane flies over Skew or Hidden Valley making three circuits so that I could get photos, and then does the same at Karratha Station. A geologist takes me to the top of Mount Price – deposits me by midday and comes back at 5.30. I have a delightful afternoon quietly watching the day and light go across the plain.

from the diary of Fred Williams, on this date in 1979

it's rare to see a bbc news page with a little bite but see the paragraph that starts "Meanwhile, the US State Department's website" here~

Friday, 13 May 2005

On the way we run into a squall – the pilot comes down out of it in a corkscrew turn and the sight at about 500 feet was brilliant – flocks of parrots and lines of brumbies. Running through the desert – very memorable. Chris takes me to a delightful spot. I paint for one and a half hours – too rushed.

from the diary of Fred Williams, on this date in 1979

Thursday, 12 May 2005


a few months ago somedisco [“gorgeous newshound”! – Oliver Craner; “really can’t sing”! – WOEBOT; linked with a “corrosive intellectual force”! – Robin Carmody] scooped the likes of The Times, The New Zealand Listener, The Economist, Le Monde and The Far Eastern Economic Review with its obituary of satire, prompted by the behaviour of a certain central Asian despot (the plaudits bestowed upon me for this feat of journalistic brilliance have caused me to start writing about myself in the third person occasionally, you see).

now it seems that satire in the UK may have finally met its grisly end; i don’t know if British satirists can cope with the onslaught of actual reality that emanates from the Daily Express these days (you hafta give ‘em the benefit of the doubt and assume their coverage is deadly serious in intent).

a fine highlight of recent days is its reporting today of the decision by the Bluewater shopping complex, Kent, to stop people entering its premises if they’re wearing baseball caps (so presumably Carl Barat will be pleased, as he sang about the sad sight of an Englishman wearing a baseball cap) or hooded tops [hoods presumably up – come on, they’re not unreasonable].
today’s phone-in question is ‘Should hooded yobs be banned from our streets?’
there’s a YES number and a NO number.


as the phrase says, you couldn’t make it up.

incidentally on the above Anthony Blair being outflanked by the Lib Dems and the Tories, who are both speaking more sense than him on this particular issue.
but Comrade Blair is a bit of a regrettable social authoritarian isn’t he.
manchester matters
[in the sense of discussing manchester, UK, not that anything here, yunno, matters]


Mylo isn't a local indie dude, he's some brassy dance music merchant apparently.
though popular with alt. kids i believe.

i'm sorry.

one thing that i will say is Fat City - which is the very nice record store/label/laundrette (well maybe not all those things) associated with the Grand Central people etc {fat city web} has some flyers for their lovely friends&family nights out at the mo.

now i remember Maff memorably once calling Andy Votel a berk (i think i recall this anyway).
i also remember interviews with Votel from relatively ages and ages ago going on about all the {prety much a quote, a paraphrase, i can't remember, i just can't be arsed to look and besides where do you start in the morass of the internet. eh? etc} all the Polish jazz, Turkish rock, and such he'd taken pleasure in unearthing.
perhaps it was for a b-music night at local bar Cornerhouse (Gruff Super Furries turned up once, and they were playing Roman Polanski-associated Polish jazz iirc).


this flyer the other day well Andy Votel has unearthed Polish jazz, wild psych(e) from somewhere or other and Turkish rock (or was it folk) for your listening pleasure.
like a badge of honour, a fearless crate-digger.

such, almost, trumpet blowing seems most unseemly.

David Sue the local journo is a funny one banging on about electro influencing local indie outfits and how their take on electroclash provided glory and tunes and whatnot and memory and staying power {i may be overstating his case somewhat, granted} in contrast to that foolish fashion-led distaste of the London-NY electroclash scene [i'm sure i recall a statement along the lines of electroclash started in mcr, which would surely be a surprise to inhabitants of the Eternal City, circa '1998/99, as i've blogged here before].

but if you're trying to tell me the orgasmic release of 'emerge' - its shiny pop goodness, lovely anxiousness, general stubborn qualities of glee and finery - wasn't some good shit then bugger off.

this alone should be enough to privilege any 'fashionista nonsense' over a regionally triumphant revival of whatnot.
i think.


sorry bit of a rant above but whatever it is seems to be off my chest now.
The Rambler is too good to us

Wednesday, 11 May 2005

I like dance very much. Dance is an extraordinary thing: life and rhythm. It is easy for me to live with dance.

Henri Matisse

Tuesday, 10 May 2005

the Sunday Telegraph post-election edition was keen to join the rest of us in celebrating a diminished Labour majority but didn’t seem particularly hot on the need for a Tory reformation (not a fully modernising paper yet, give or take an article from Francis Maude and Stephen Dorrell). still, at least they’re not the Daily Express, who hailed “hero” Michael Howard after he announced his intentions to step down as party leader: language Mr Howard himself would surely run from. i wonder what his opinion was of Michael Heffer’s Spectator article arguing he should stay?

there was, though, one pretty daft thing in the Telegraph the other day which was a perhaps OTT leader column about resurgent Conservatism, this, that, and the other.

What is clear is that the party is staging the beginnings of a recovery in the South-East generally and London in particular – a partial revival embodied in the election of Justine Greening in Putney. It is just possible, in this respect, that Londoners will prove to be trend-setters: their contact with the horrors of street crime is more relentless, their sense of the economy’s fragility more acute, their fury with shoddy public services and pathetic public transport more intense.

i appreciate that London, as the epicentre of British life, has all these sorts of problems magnified [both in the actual and in perception] because of the weights of numbers there, and that is the point the writer is trying to get across.
but the shopping list of grievances is used to beef up an argument that doesn’t carry too much water.
try talking to the inhabitants of Nottingham or Liverpool about the horrors of relentless street crime.
surely the inhabitants of towns like Grimsby, Hull or Stoke-on-Trent have an extremely acute feel for the economy’s fragility? more so than Londoners, you could argue.
yeah, shoddy public services like dodgy hospitals and whatnot. what about the residents of, say, Barrow-in-Furness?
i know some Londoners {in the popular imagination} don’t mind moaning about the tube etc (cattle transportation blahblah) and can belittle intoxicated tourists who don’t have to deal with its rigours year round.
pathetic public transport?
no trains in the sticks, no buses half the time.
all i can say is the writer should come up to Manchester and visit the just-as-crowded just-as-often-abused Metrolink tram system, with the ‘consolation’ that tickets are more expensive up here and the line far less extensive {now, that is something that is partially Labour’s fault, to be honest}.

the point is London does not have it worse than the provinces in these respects (in the case of the menace of street crime, certainly not compared to the larger provincial cities, or perhaps muggers prefer to work as bakers under Tory governance, thanks presumably to tax breaks for pastry chefs) so this undercuts the argument being put forward.
but it’s only a line being pushed tentatively, to be fair.

so there you have it.

Monday, 9 May 2005


Sunday, 8 May 2005

A good pal of mine has recently made me two compilation CD-R’s, of Cormega and Big Pun. i’m woefully ignorant of these two, just knowing the sorts of back-stories everyone does, but i’ve been meaning to get into both for ages now. There’s a lot of collaborations and in the case of Big Pun exhaustive mining of the clearly rich seam that is his debut album and i’m not even sure if every tune should technically be specified to one or the other rapper alone. Be that as it may, the tracklistings are as follows:

1. Dramatic Entrance
2. Tony/Montana
3. They forced my hand
4. Live ya life
5. The Band [or is it the bond? i’ve not heard this CD yet really and can’t read his handwriting]
6. RU my n***a
7. Redemption
8. True Meaning
9. Raps a hustle
10. Stay up
11. Thun & Kicko [i’ve heard of this one cause it’s the Prodigy collaboration – what was that line against him? “I got money stacks bigger than you, ya little fuck” or something]
12. Therapy
13. The saga
14. Beautiful mind
15. Fallen soldiers
16. Love in love out
17. Monsters ball


1. Banned from TV
2. You ain’t a killer
3. Off the books
4. I’m not a player
5. Punish me
6. It’s so hard
7. John Blaze
8. My dick
9. Glamour life
10. Tres leches
11. Laughing at you
12. Still not a player
13. You came up
14. Mamma
15. 100%
16. Twinz
17. How we roll ’98

i’ve not really listened to the Cormega one yet, although his persona and the whole Nas connections fascinate me. i’ve been meaning to pick up that very first album for ages.
The Big Punisher is a revelation, technically he’s really good. And there’s some banging choons on this one, it’s great. ‘It’s so hard’ is good even though at first something about the chorus just made me plain laugh out loud.
My friend had told me to listen out for how good his breathing is and that; it’s sometimes almost a bit hard to believe someone as physically large as he was at his end can sound like this. What was it, 400 pounds on his deathbed.
i was told he’s the first Hispanic-American rapper to go platinum (or was it multi-platinum).
and Puff Daddy was an idol of his, also.
that’s a bit funny given – purely in rapping terms – Pun is clearly supremely superior to Diddy {well, and a lot of other, much better emcees, anyway}.

Wednesday, 4 May 2005

George Monbiot on West Papua discusses the sorts of issues i wrote about - believe it or not - for what the Americans call the thesis in my politics degree.

short version: JFK, the UN, etc., cruelly sold 'em down the river.

the BP site has some lovely colours.
it's almost a shame the Amnesty one is so drab by comparison.

Tuesday, 3 May 2005

there is this, tomorrow.

see that Dorina, at the bottom?

she comes up with excellent and inventive new twists on classic side dishes, deliciously.

she's also my girl's mate.
and a complete star.

incidentally, speaking of salsa and guacamole, if you're ever in the neighbourhood, you could do worse than drop by here, to give your tastebuds/tummy a special treat.

it's to die for.