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Friday, 20 December 2013

New Album: The World is Coming to Get you!

It's finally here.. In a year of strangeness and movement I've managed to complete it...
It's a bit odder than usual.. and a bit Shorter.. and it reflects EXACTLY where I am at the moment...

Hope you enjoy...

Monday, 30 September 2013

Day 30: The Final Day (Or, The explanation for this cavalcade of inanity)

Well.. It's the last day of September, and so it's the last day of the experiments...

I managed to not have any caffeine for a whole month...
That started off very bad, but very quickly became normal. Decaff Tea and Coffee are pretty good these days and the only difficult bit was remembering not to have any rum and coke while I was out, and being boozy... I managed it though...

I managed to not go on Facebook at all, despite the desperate pleading emails the website sent me, or the alluring notifications that popped up on my phone every so often. The trick is to get rid of any shortcut that leads to it. You find if you have to type the word in, it is rarely worth the effort. I've enjoyed the additional free-time this has given me, and although I will go back on there, I have no desperation. I won't be 'racing' back. I feel I have re-calibrated my relationship to a s lightly more healthy and balanced level and will no longer feel the urge to trawl through it endlessly, succeeding only in getting agitated by distant relatives unknowingly racist/sexist/homophobic 'shares'.

The third one will become obvious if you have looked over this Blog at any time over the past month. It was the most tricky one, and the one I was least confident in being able to achieve, and so I haven't mentioned it until now... (Although it really is terribly self-evident)
Yes I committed to write a blog a day. No matter what was happening, no matter how little I felt like it, in fact no matter how little I had to say. I decided I had to do it.

Why? Well, I had been neglecting it quite badly since I had a whole load of real life and could no longer trawl Twitter for days looking for Trends and Rumours and weird political bits and bobs.. It's like a complicated US TV show, miss it for a bit and it takes a while to pick up the rhythm, so I hadn't been putting anything on here at all...

Also because of that real life stuff, I wanted to do deep and meaningful writing. But A blog simply isn't the place for that, by forcing myself to write every day It meant I had to keep hopping from subject to subject and would have to be, essentially shallow... which is a good thing.. I needed to break out from my self imposed seriousness and embrace frivolity.. so apologies if this seems even more inane that usual, believe me.. it was supposed to...

Mainly I did it because I never thought I'd be able to. To just write and publish a short piece every day amongst all the other things that go on when you've started a new job that is ludicrously stressful, and having moved to a city on your own, seemed a ridiculous feat. I did it mainly because I thought I couldn't... But I did....

So what now?

Well I won't be bound into blogging every day. It was a good exercise and I've felt the benefit, but I've got different things to start this month...
I will Blog more often though.. I still have a few ideas that I didn't use, and I think I've successfully re-modeled what I want this Blog to be... just cheeky little observation pieces, fluff that I put out while I pour the blood and tears into the real writing...

So yes. First month of experimentation complete, and I'm happy with what I've done...

Role on October.

Sunday, 29 September 2013

Day 29: Any old Iron, Any old Iron, Any any any old Irony... (Or, Please, Younglings, we've already made these mistakes.. save yourselves...)

A change of pace from the last two Blogs which painted me as some kind of arrested development mankid... now one that will sketch me as a curmudgeonly old bugger grumbling about 'The Kids Today'

Well kind of... I'm going to be complaining about their music. Well, not their music.. it was our music actually.. but anyway I'm getting ahead of myself and overcomplicating things... So I'll leap back to the start.

Since I couldn't go to the Sleepover at the Natural History Museum (A friend did offer me a lend of their child, but sadly it was too late for me to do anything about it) I decided to find a club night. Something light hearted. Somewhere I'd never been. I settled upon one, and made my way down to East London to attend it.

It was quite fun. Much like the 'Preacherman' episode of Nathan Barley, but with more drag queens. So Far so much fun, but the problem soon became clear, in a crushing attempt to lay irony on with a trowel they had seemingly restricted their record box into novelty Hell...

Confession time: I am an Ex-Music Snob. Yes I was one of the worst. One of those annoying douchebags who has a narrow idea of what music actually 'is'.. and therefore anything that doesn't match that, therefore, SIMPLY Cannot be music. I was wrong of course. Music is simply noise designed to elicit an emotion, and that can be a Symphony, a Jazz Solo, Children Singing or the fucking We Buy Any Car Jingle... You may not like it, but it's all music isn't it...

Anyway, I'm much better now. I have grown up and loosened up. I have 99 Red Balloons and Luft Balon on my ipod, I very publicly requested Toxic by Britney on a 6music show about Pop that Stands up (Many friends contacted me within 45 seconds of my name being mentioned), I actually like the song 'Wired for Sound' and I have been known 'throw shapes' to some of the cheapest pop there is.

So that's the context, Reformed Music Snob goes to Irony heavy club night. And soon enough I was getting irked. Yes Yes, it's all very well to do 'Cheesy Pop' and 'Retro Classics', but at least keep it consistent. I mean, there were plenty of good tunes from the 80s and 70s, Prince, New Order, Go West, Duran Duran, Technotronic, Inner City... sounds lovely doesn't it. It was, they were the diamonds sparkling away.

Sadly though, the vast bulk was pop from the 90s and 2000s, basically from my era. This selection represented us. All these kids (And I use that term advisedly, as many of them were younger than my vinyl copies of the records we were listening to) were going wild, but to what tunes?.. Well we had Everybody (Backstreet's Back).. Not once, but 3 times. We had 'I just can't get you out of my head', a nice enough little pop tune, but we had it 4 times over the course of the night... The Mashup with new order twice, the original twice.

...and this was common incidentally. Many of the songs were repeated, and often the worse ones. It seemed, that because they were trying so hard to be quirky and funny they seemed to be desperately avoiding anything that could be even remotely be construed as serious (from which the older songs are immune, cos 'They're like.. retro yeah?'... By doing this they had closed the box on all the best pop of the period.

We didn't get Missy Elliot doing 'Get Ur Freak on', which would have torn the roof of the place, we got the fucking Vengabus for some sub-Butlin's arm waving, we didn't get Timbers doing 'Sexy Back', we got Reach for the Stars... and they did. They reached. I've already used Sub Butlin's. This was Sub Pontins.

I just wanted them to try harder. You can be poppy without being repetitive. You can be Ironic without just slinging The worst on Offer, you can be 'Camp' without being Shrill... I wanted to tell them that these are all mistakes I've made earlier in my clubbing life. We went through this so you don't have to.

Mostly I was just embarrassed that they will now think that's all the 90s/2000 pop acts were. They weren't. even for the snob I was at the time, I heard a few Bangers.

But I didn't let it spoil my night. I would just smile to myself and walk through the crowds of happy young people Reaching for The Stars like a playmobil version of Rave Culture and look in the other room to see what music was on in there...

Usually it was Everybody (Backstreet's Back....)

Saturday, 28 September 2013

Day 28: Carefree Tax (Or, Why YOUR Child means I can't sleep with a Dinosaur Tonight)

Now, anyone who has read yesterday's post will probably imagine me an emotionally maladjusted 'child man' who giggles inanely at clouds and wants only to eat sweets and draw with crayons.

If that is this the case, I'm afraid this post will do nothing to disabuse of that Incorrect Notion. Sure, I do want to do those things, but I do grown up things as well, just that they aren't suitable for this Blog.

I have no children. Again the people who have read this blog before are probably relieved. I don't seem the type to be able to handle having an utterly dependent, (Near Parasitic maybe) organ attached to me, sucking away my life force in order to live. Of course they are right, and that unpleasantly skewed description of being a parent I just wrote proves that. I probably would be a rotten father. I don't know though, and the only evidence I have for this is based upon my perception of YOUR children

Yes Yours. Anyone who has children.
Frankly I resent them.

I don't hate them, or dislike them personally. I just resent what they mean to my life.

I don't mind that you get free money and tax breaks to help raise them. It's clearly a costly job and will last until you die, and since the whole make up of the world is dependent on you doing it correctly, I'm happy for any assistance that stops future generations from turning into mewling, self important douchebags. I'm happy to have a monetary Tax on my 'wonderfully selfish' carefree life. It's worth it frankly.

So it isn't that. What I resent is when they directly impact on my life. Ie. When some idiot wants to ban a game/film/book/comic/decorative fez/series of saucy etchings etc that is clearly marketed to adults because some dumb ass parent has let their over sensitive groundrat get traumatized by it.

'Oh, but we must think of the Children' was the cry that made the Texas Chainsaw Massacre ILLEGAL for so many years, and if you're a parent who looked at that film and got it confused with the Rainbow Bright Christmas Special, it is you they should come for, not my video...

So, keep the kids out of adult entertainment if you're worried. But equally pernicious to me and my Joyful/Child-Man Mindset (Delete as you see fit) is when it works the other way. Some wonderful entertainments are deemed just for children, or (and this is the unfair bit) to any adult who happens to have a clutch of these gurgling bed-moisteners to hand.

The fact that I don't have children is what is preventing me from going to a sleepover at the national history museum tonight.
Yes.. a FUCKING Sleepover at the National History Museum. And yes, you sleep in the shadow of the giant dinosaur skeleton.
(Incidentally if that doesn't sound like an amazing way to spend the saturday night that I'd usually spend in a club, please leave this blog now and have a cardiac specialist xray the lump of cold, dead carbon in your chest)
I can't do that because you need to have a group of kids with you. Now I don't particularly want to go there because I deal kids pretty much how a rational person deals with wasps. If they aren't in my face I ignore them. If they get in my face I try and shoo them away, but if they are on mass I get the fuck out of there.

Sadly, for some reason, they don't see this as an activity that requires an 'adults' night... so I would have just plugged in my earphones to drown out the amassed child-babble and fallen into a smiling sleep whilst focusing on the dinosaur bones and feeling that I was somehow fulfilling an ambition from when I was an equally nauseating brat. This is happening at other museums too, and Kew gardens and the like... all with the additional fee on top of the ticket price, of spending some time looking after a smaller person who might urinate on themselves.

This has impacted on my life before. At one of the last Big Chill festivals, before that once mighty gathering reached its sad and ignoble end (Which I attended, and wept) they advertised a petting zoo. My Then Girlfriend was particularly thrilled by this idea, and while there was no music on we decided to venture towards the 'kids field' an expanse that took up a third of the entire site, and was incredibly sparsely populated. When we arrived we were told we couldn't come in, because we hadn't decided to jumble our DNA together, squirt it into a skin sack and carry it around with us for the rest of our natural lives.

Funnily enough, I don't remember the one third discount from the ticket price for not being able to use that proportion of the field. I also don't remember that the tickets for 'non-breeders' were exclusively made available to 'rampant child-abductors who desperately want the sod of smug little sod-child who would be at the Big Chill' or that kind of 'Giant from Jack and The Beanstalk who Grinds Kids Bones to make their bread'

Ok, Rant over.
I don't begrudge you your child. Just don't expect me to share your delight in them and definitely don't expect me to give enough of a shit to want to harm them in any way.

I agree to not swear in their presence, or watch Hardcore porn where they might see, or watch Driller Killer in a nursery, and you can agree to keep them well out of my life.

Oh, and don't let them stand between me and having some quality time with a dinosaur... Deal?