Posts from 9th February 2005

Feb 05

ja tvoi sluga

Proven By SciencePost a comment • 195 views

ja tvoi sluga

(since i know she won’t publicise it herself)

Day 21: The Devil Went Down To Georgia AROUND THE WORLD IN 80 LOUSY TUNES

I Hate MusicPost a comment • 870 views

Day 21: The Devil Went Down To Georgia

I slept the night in a Jersey Bus Station feeling like an unclean tramp. I spent about half an hour int he toilets just to wash off the general Tom Waitsiness off of my body. I tried another reverse charges call to Miami, got the answerphone again. What was Crispian doing down there. This bedraggled version of me was a long way from that fateful day in the Reform Club. I cursed the thought of Tom Ewing and his pop loving beard.

So how was I to get down to Miami to be reacquainted with my money, my manservant and a gallon or two of lovely, lovely gin. Well I was in a bus station. And whilst I might not have any money I had something that the collective members of New Order did not have between them: an artful brain. And as serendipity would have it a bus heading for Athens, Georgia was just pulling up to the stand.

I have always wanted to go to Athens to see exactly how it spawned so many terrible bands, and perhaps make sure it never did again so this opportunity was too good to pass up. Luckily the humungous bulk of a number of the passengers made it very easy for me to slip into the underbus luggage compartment. Snuggled between a couple of rucksacks, it was not exactly comfortable but it was movement. After a bit the motion lulled me to sleep.

I was awoken by an angry bus driver who said he would call the police but frankly could not be arsed. So I skipped out and took stock. It had gone dark, and there was moisture in the air. Damn you Randy Crawford and your Rainy Night In Georgia. I shook my fist at the good of making bad musical connections and set out to destroy this town.

THE CHARLIE DANIELS BAND: The Devil Went Down To Georgia

I am under the impression that The Devil Went Down To Georgia, took one look at REM and the B-52s then buggered off again, on account of how their squealing noise and hideous visages were too vile for even the dark lord himself.

Moreover he feared that if he hung around he might lose his acquaintance with the best tunes*. After all baldy Stipes and the shouty one out of the B-52’s were hardly songwriting genii. The Devil was potentially attracted by the armageddonesque stylings of Its The End Of The World As We Know It, but soon realised that it was not actually the end of the world, merely everyone listening to the record wished it was to put an end to the awful noise.

As for Athens, let us compare and contrast the saying for the great and the good of Athens Greece with those of Athens Georgia:

Beauty of style and harmony and grace and good rhythm depend on Simplicity –Plato
Your feet are going to be on the ground, Your head is there to move you around Michael Stipes

Let him who would move the world first move himself. –Socrates
Red snappers snappin’, Clam shells clappin’, Muscles flexin’, Flippers flippin’Shouty bloke from the B-52’s

Hmm, cradle of civilization vs coffin of said.

*I do not condone the idea of there being such a thing as “the best tunes” but would happily admit that the best tunes, along with all the other tunes would exist in hell. Even if it is just my personal hell.

THE FT TOP 100 SONGS 88. Subway Sect – “Ambition”

FT + New York London Paris Munich/Post a comment • 1,824 views

88. Subway Sect – “Ambition”

Sarah says

What’s the matter, Vic? “I don’t write any words you get in rock songs…I like those words – that seem out of place in a rock song.” It’s a funny thing that Vic’s been most famous for the most trad “rock” song he’s ever written, but punk has always been a funny old mare to me. The aural assaults of teh Sexy Pistols left me cold, but Vic came out with Ambition that LAMBASTED the hoary old punk machine with a WIT and SUBTLETY like no-one else. I won a guitar from him you know, and he delivered it to my HOUSE! You can tell he’s a postman, there was something in the QUALITY. Do you think that Peter Cook was ever a Northern Soul boy? I can’t say the thought ever crossed my mind, until I saw Vic play a tiny football bar in Sunny Brentford last year, and then it all became startlingly obvious – Pete wasn’t, but Vic is. Ambivalence stalks us, but Vic galvanises us. I love him. He loves me. He is my husband. No really. HE IS!

Er will that do. Sorry. SORRY. Who nominated it anyway?!

Plowing The Dark by Richard Powers

The Brown WedgePost a comment • 224 views

Plowing The Dark by Richard Powers

I was discussing spoilers yesterday with Anthony Easton. This was in the context of movie reviews, but it had been on my mind thinking about this novel that I had just finished. The main strand is of a bunch of hotshot computer people developing a pretty lame-sounding virtual reality system. The smaller strand starts with a guy taking up teaching in Lebanon (actually never named, but clear enough)(and have I mentioned that I am related to a former president of that country?); I don’t think I can avoid mentioning that he is kidnapped and held hostage, and that does happen very early. But it’s a lot of pages before there is much more than the vaguest thematic link between the two narratives – obviously there are parallels where the man has no resources, but reconstructs things from memory and imagination, while the other lot are creating their worlds with the best resources available. These links strengthen as it goes on, but late on he pulls them a bit closer together in more than thematic ways, in what struck me as a crappy contrivance to no great purpose. It’s more because of that that I don’t mention it, than out of fear of spoiling it.

I’ve only read one other Powers novel, Galatea 2.2, and this is nowhere near that one’s strength. Some of the VR was stuff not remotely suited to or needing such simulations, and Powers clearly has zero grasp of chaos theory, which completely fucks one subplot, and focussing on an artist brought in to give the techies something to simulate is all very well, but when she compares a lot of chrome to a “Duchamp original” you wonder where you are supposed to be. Neither tale really goes anywhere very interesting, despite the brief SF gimmick, and while all the characters are well drawn none of them greatly gripped me. I still think he’s a very good writer and will read more, but I wouldn’t recommend anyone to start with this one.

Man U ultras’ anti-Glazer tactics

TMFDPost a comment • 473 views

Man U ultras’ anti-Glazer tactics – notably the revelation that “the group also claim to have a severed horses head” which they are waiting to unleash. For some reason the idea of this waiting neatly in someone’s freezer somewhere is blackly amusing. Clearly it’s de rigeur for the modern indimidator to have access to this international symbol for menace – well, not counting the animal rights people, obviously. But boasting about it does rather remove the element of surprise.