Posts from November 2001

7
Nov 01

Jay-Z: The Blueprint

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Jay-Z: The Blueprint: you won’t believe it’s Pitchfork. (i.e. Ethan is writing about hip-hop as if it was the best-selling and most important music in America instead of something titillating to listen to between Of Montreal albums).

Found on a John Cage messageboard

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Found on a John Cage messageboard: “I was searching through napster recently and i was curious to see if anyone had 4’33 as an MP3 on their computer. It turns out that 27 people had it, but not one of the recordings was 4’33 seconds long. Pretty odd but im not sure what it means….”

JANET JACKSON (featuring Missy Elliott) — “Son of a Gun (Remix)” PINK — “Get This Party Started”

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JANET JACKSON (featuring Missy Elliott) — “Son of a Gun (Remix)”
PINK — “Get This Party Started”

Once upon a time, a footloose and fancy-free Janet whimsically daydreamed about that special someone in the bar with the funky car, while Pink was a poor lass kicking deadbeat ass to the curb. Now I R in Bizarro World, because Ms. Jackson (yes, I’m nasty) is having a grand old time playing good cop / bad cop with Missy, a slipperly lava-like bassline, and some poor fella trying to skim some cream off of that ridiculously defined six-pack. She’s never sounded better — even the Carly Simon sample can’t be denied. (It’s easier without Carly – sounding much too much like Janet’s brother for my taste – crying about the cream in her vendi latte over some half-baked Medeski, Martin & Wood ‘funk’ organ.) Meanwhile, Ms. Pink is looking quite blonde nowadays, and she’s the better for it. Washing those men right out of her hair leaves her head in the clouds and her feet scampering all across the dance floor. C&C Music Factory started the party quickly, but Pink’s Day-Glo production gets the party started right.

6
Nov 01

“A pint of lager and a vodka and slimlime tonic please”

Pumpkin PublogPost a comment • 263 views

“A pint of lager and a vodka and slimlime tonic please”. It’s wrong to laugh at the people who say “slimline” instead of “diet”, I’m sure it is. But what if it’s just post-work, you’re in a pub which (ugh!) faces directly onto Oxford Street and he is wearing a pinstripe suit with a purple shirt? I think in that case it’s perfectly acceptable. The pub in question in this unfortunate instance is the Hog and Pound on Moulton St, Londons Trendy West One, postcode pickers. The first worrying sign was the fact that I was alerted to this pub via text message from a website I drunkenly signed up to when WEBSITE SCROTES came round our table whilst we were sprawled about in a Camden boozer. I signed up under the name “Prussia Anschluss”, hoping that I would get merely BIERKELLER updates but ach no CHIZ.

The inside of the pub is absolutely tiny and packed full of people in those suits with a vague shine on them… not quite sure if they are meant to be like that and cost ’3300000 or if they are just CHEAP. I suspect the latter to be honest… we look about, concerned as to where this karaoke machine could possibly be located on a heaving Friday night. The King of Corsica usuals could fill the upstairs, no problem. After BIFF BASH BOSHING our way through the cheap suits with our respective odd tasting pints of Directors Bitter, we find a door and wobble down some stairs to find no more seats. ARSE I think, ARSE! So we lean against a PILLAR and I realise the jukebox in the corner IS my sixteen year old self! Hello Radiohead! Hello Manics! How nice to have the company of Sean Moores trumpet.

We talk about STACKS and I get stuck, I note their lack of special promotional offers on ALE. Fair enough, these pubs are often rubbidge. You know what I mean, the ones with the FAKE CHALK notices outside – but are often made into solid gold gems due to offers on the free bouze. However, this was expensive and ‘ORRID. The Smirnoff Ice was lined up like a cheap tart. I felt soiled. So did my drinking companion who went off to the gents, and reported back that the urinals were made of porcelain. Being a chick I disdain this information. By now the atmosphere has congealed around us like a disgusting stinking pan of DRIPPING. We duck out into the cold of Moulton St, our faith in pubs waning. The moral of the story is OXFORD STREET BOOZERS: NO.

The search for a new Friday night karaoke local continues.

5
Nov 01

Media Notice – for immediate release

Pumpkin PublogPost a comment • 253 views

Media Notice – for immediate release

Beeland Concepts announces new drinking concept set to call time on Britain’s tired pubs

Britain’s pubs will never be the same again, thanks to a revolutionary new concept by gastro-pub-leisure-call centre conglomerate Beeland Concepts.

The group, which owns lots of things, have decided to move into this expanding sector after research conducted by University of Watford Gap Marketing guru Dr Frank Obvious. Dr Obvious concluded after studying cross-cultural and trans-historical trends that people ‘like drinking alcohol’. His amazing findings conclude with a rallying call to all entrepeneurs:

“There seems to be no factor that stops people getting drunk; births, marriages and even death appear to be no deterrent to drinking; indeed, early analysis shows that these events can act as a incentive. We also found that whilst people sometimes celebrated good news through drinking, many others used alcohol to commiserate; in this sense, it truly is an empty signifier, as Lacan theorised. And, just as Lacan made a mint out of empty signifiers, there’s gold in them thar hills for anyone who can get in on the act with alcohol.”

Dr Obvious – famous for his paradigm-shifting research showing ice-cream salesman made more money in the summer – worked with Beeland Concepts to realise the explosive vision contained within the stunning findings.

Now, after months of painstaking focus groups, Beeland launched the concept today at a Media event held in London’s exclusive West End. He revealed that the patented concept had been designed to appeal to all those people who were put off by traditional pubs and met their concerns head-on:

Pubs often have toilets that have graffiti on them, and when people have used them, there is evidence of their traces, be it hand-dryers left running, or unflushed toilets. In Beeland’s new world, the toilets will be for decoration only.

– Pool tables are often difficult to get onto because lots of people want to play, using unclear preference systems such as knocking the table, places varying denominations of coinage on them or illegibly marking on an unwritable blackboard with an infinitesimally small piece of chalk. Beeland will have a minimum charge of ’100, so only rich tossers who have recently watched ‘The Hustler’ and think they’re Paul Newman will be able to play.

The floor occassionally has cigarette ash and butts ground in, or is slightly sticky from spilt alcohol. Beeland can see no way around this problem, so will not have floors in their pubs.

They will not have a ceiling either as it tends to become yellowed, reminding smokers of what their lungs might look like and making non-smokers feel queasy. The same is true for walls.

Noise will be banned, Beeland announce. Dr Obvious concluded that Jukeboxes tended to be either monopolised by people who loaded up selections. The alternative, he found, was that people became irate when the machine randomised selections to avoid this. Even the radical step of not having music hadn’t worked, it was discovered, as people tended to ‘talk utter rubbish’ when drinking, which was annoying to other customers.

Beer itself will be banned, as research indicated that, ultimately, most of the problems were linked back to the consumption of alcohol in the first place.

Beeland CEO Homme O’Genous said the vision behind his new concept was ‘All the excitment of a pub without any of the nasty consequences that seem to put people off, such as customers drinking in them.”

Notes:

Beeland can be contacted via the alternate reality in which they live, work and took marketing and PR courses

– Ends

The FT mailbag

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The FT mailbag has been heaving under the weight of, well, three comments on the David Bowie radio show. Two out of the three were favourable but in the interests of balance and to curry sympathy here’s the hostile one (also it points out some geniune schoolboy errors – one of which was intentional to RILE Bowie pedants but the other of which was me not getting the right T Rex record. I claim moral victory anyway due to correspondent’s use of word “facking”).

“Dear Tom

I listened to you tonight on Radcliffe’s Radio 2 programme “Heroes or Zeroes”. I’m afraid to say you actually did come across as a complete twat, not only a complete twat, but a complete twat with completely wrong facts.

From your “arguments/statements” I counted two that could be justified as factually correct. Even though I disagreed with what you said, they were at least factual.

Arguments are fine – nothing wrong with people having opinions and thoughts, but please get your facts straight before blurting out absolute nonsense.

For the record… here’s 5 you got completely arse about tit…

1. Concerning copying Marc Bolan with the rhyming names… (as if that facking mattered anyway) but for the record Rolan Bolan was born FOUR years AFTER Zowie. (Rolan Bolan 8th October 1975 – Duncan Zowie Haywood Jones 30th May 1971). So if anything it was the other way around wasn’t it now.

2. You say Space Oddity was a novelty song about Major Tom the astronaut. Then DB revives him in Ashes To Ashes and suddenly Tom becomes a junkie? Space Oddity IS ABOUT TAKING HEROIN. It a metaphor. If you think taking heroin is a novelty then fine.

4. Bolan’s Electric Warrior album was released in November 1972, not 1971. Ziggy Stardust was released June 1972, That’s 6 months BEFORE. Not much happening on the “glam rock” scene in 1971 was there.

3. David Bowie had nothing whatsoever to do with Glam Rock.

Cheers, and thanks for a good laugh.

Paul Kinder”

4
Nov 01

NOVEMBER SONGS

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NOVEMBER SONGS

Up above, no lights. No moon, not a star. Somewhere off to the right the A40 is a shimmy of white headlight dots, we turn a corner and it’s gone. The bus stops, out of duty. Nobody gets on here, ever. Nobody gets on here, tonight. All around us are silhouettes. But that pretty French word feels technical and misplaced. These are bulks of shadow, squat and fat and black. Barns or walls or treelines by day, now lightless and limitless.

Nobody ever gets on here at Lewknor Turn but sometimes people get off, walk out of the bus-stop puddle of light and into the dark. I imagine them walking towards these walls of gloom, into them, and every time the bus stops here I imagine myself getting up, slinging my bag across my shoulder and following.

But instead I tough the volume button on the discman and as the bus pulls out from the empty stop the music gets louder. I am listening to a CD called Low Birth Weight, by a band called Piano Magic. The inlay of the record shows stuffed, dead-eyed kittens, having a tea party. The music is skeletal and brittle like a dry brown leaf. The first song is called ‘Snowfall Soon’. The singers pick their way across their lyrics like the songs are frozen rivers. The last one starts ‘A sky without god is a clear, clear sky’. The spaces between the clockwork beats and the wind-up noisemakers are crisp and sharp like the air must be out there, at the bus stop, on the edge of the dark. I love this record for all these things. I cannot imagine putting it on with another soul in the room. I will play it every Autumn for the rest of my life.

A few minutes from Lewknor Turn the A40 grows rows of streetlights, and the shapes outside fade into a single, safer darkness. It is light enough on the bus to write, so I get out my notebook and I do.

1
Nov 01

This will not do.

Pumpkin PublogPost a comment • 1,023 views

This will not do. The publog must form a key node of resistance in the war against the tyrrany of the banal drinkery. While I don’t necessarily believe the apocalyptic account of the decline of the ‘real’ pub, I cannot accept the claim of one brewery owned chain’s spokesman that “what was homogenous was when all you ever got was the local boozer. There is now tremendous diversity town and city centres. Just because there are new types of bars catering for a section of society, it doesn’t mean other pubs will cease to exist.” ‘Tremendous diversity’ translates, roughly, as ‘spurious attempts at niche marketing’; and ‘diversity’ within a town centre means the same ‘diversity’ within ALL town centres. Which is not the same thing at all…

A Reminder!

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A Reminder! Tonight I’m going to be on Radio 2 (follow link at the top of this page) on the Heroes Or Zeroes programme, talking about David Bowie. You can listen on your wireless at home or on the Internet. The show lasts half an hour and I’m on it quite a bit. It starts at 10 PM GMT. I got a copy of the show on CD and I don’t sound like too much of a twat even if the things I’m saying may not be completely sincere. Enjoy!