Thursday, 18 September 2008

So, like, the world's ending, yeah?

Don't get me wrong.

Eggs are more expensive. Bread's more expensive. Things are happening in American politics that I have opinions on. Mother nature's plight perturbs me. I am a caring man.

But. This whole collapse of the global economy. Is it bad form not to care? Not as in 'yeah man, I'm a rebel. A REBEL WITHOUT A CAUSE. I don't give a shit about the affairs of Johnny Wall Street. That might constitute a cause'.

I just kind of feel a bit like I'm watching a horror film where everybody's running around in terror and concern about an invisible force that's going to make us all poor. Only instead of the invisible force turning out to be a Predator or whatever (incidentally watched the first Predator film again the other day - extra mark for post-Arrested Development Carl Weathers amusement, severe loss of marks because Arnie kills the Predator with THE WORLD'S SHITTEST TRAP), it's a series of really convoluted factors based on people's belief that stuff is worth money. Maybe. Is that how it works? Er, anyway, so I'm sitting there watching all these perturbed stockbrokers on TV, reading quite lengthy articles about it in the paper, even being quite fascinated by it, but I'm just not concerned at all. I mean, I don't have a house, I don't own shares, I don't work in the city, but still, y'know, very successful men in expensive suits are sat there saying 'WE'RE ALL FUCKED, RUN!' and I'm just like 'oh - interesting!'

It's not that I don't understand it (I mean, I don't really understand it), but I dunno, I feel a bit left out, like... y'know how it's not great when somebody gets hit by a car, but it is good to be concerned for said person? I worry that the global economy is that person, something called the sub-prime mortgage fiasco is that car, and I am the callous bastard wandering past thinking 'oh - interesting!'

Anyway, in the interest of being a better person, here is a plan to save the world. This will probably require some pop stars, so if any of you are pop stars, take heed. Basically, we have to write an incredibly catchy global smash - probably kinda AOR/classic rock-ish because it needs to appeal to the type of people who own shares - and the song has to be called something like 'Actually, Everyone You've Invested In Is Doing Really Well, If Anything You Might Even Want To Buy Some More Shares'. And then people will believe that and then we'll all be sorted. Or failing that we'll just get EVERYONE drunk. No thanks necessary, just buy me a pint or something next time you see me.

Failing all that, here is something both implausible and incredibly lovely that won't save the world but it would be nice if it could:

Tuesday, 9 September 2008

Bestival via the texts of others; or, a bold and brilliant excercise in avoiding having any more original thoughts on the matter


LH: Oh my god! Severe weather warning was true! Eek!
LH: Not really i'm actually stuck in my tent and i may blow away! And i'm not even drunk!
MP: Jesus. Your hot sauce is a lot more 'respectable' on the way out than the way in.
LH: Ok i'm on the new number now! Have a good journey over! My wellies have a hole in them boo!see ya later lucy x
RM: Hey dis bros its richard. I am so fkn glad i brought wellies!
RM: Hey mick, this is richard, andrzej said i should check with you where yr camping so i could try to get a spot near by, where is yr tipi located?
MN: Course it's cool. It's fucking wet and reports of mud swamps are widespread. But we're British. Fuck the weather. In the bum. Laters xxx
RM: Oops! Silly me sorry
MP: Got us pirate shit from toyshop on the G road. Mick texted&said it's minging
LM: By the way I'm coming. Xx
MP: Guh, Mick txted to say they've gone 'right to the back of Black'..that's,like,as far from the stage as you can get,and Black is 'quiet camping'..stick with em?
KP: Andrzej you cant! Are we allowed to take glass bottles to the camping area or am i on the cider? Please no! It sends me crazy!
KP: Don't let me near the mdma! I've sworn off drugs at the mo and mdma is the worst. Are you there yet?
KP: Na i'm nearly there now. Gimme a shout when you get there x
LM: Red zone next to Bagel Dude is our camp apparently. X x
MP: Yeah I got that too - that's pretty much as far from the main arena as Mick et al,just in the zone opposite..what to do,y'think? Also,the weather here is ok at mo.
MP: Erk,dunno,Mick just said she'll meet me when i arrive,so it sounds like she has made effort frankly..ain't gonna be far to Laura,think maybe we should be nice.
MP: Also,dont fret but if you can get to a cash point in S'oton,a short-term £20 loan to me would be good..realised i'll be down to £50ish after charity non-LOLZ.
MP: WOO FERRY ROFL. This sure ain't no Bothnian Sea playa cruise (not even a toilet LOL)..but holy cow, it goes like shit off a shovel. Speeding vessels ftw.
MP: Also,it takes 25min despite the alarming speed,&the sea is like a violent bogey-green/grey soup. I'm starting to realise what an AWFUL idea swimming would be.
NN: Whoo hoo! Mud's the new black. X
MP: Don't worry about the cash mate,there's a bank machine here on the island.
MP: Ya there's what seems to be a fairly minimal shuttle service running in a loop from outside the Co-Op,which is 3min from station up the hill.OHGODTHERAINCAME.
LH: I spoke too soon about the rain being gone! Boo! See ya later x
MP: Dude,you're gonna have to decant the whiskey or hide it very well - booze is fine but glass a no-no. There's a shop selling water etc when you get off the ferry.
KP: Hey i'm here but totally lost cos networks are all busy so i can't get hold of anyone to dump my stuff in their tent. If i don't ring you before i'll be waiting in the bit nex to the entrance with all the picnic benches & umbrellas ok? X
MW: Hey Andrzej, you coming to this Bestival thing? It's wet. I have combated this by taking nuff drugs.
KP: Ok i'm under a white umbrella near the cafe by the entrance to the festival. X
IHBM: Erm. I think you've got the wrong number.
MW: I'm watching Mary Anne Hobbs in the red bull speakeasy. S'good.
MJ: Nightmare mate. I can't drag the band through the rain. Come to the green room backstage, near artist liason.
LH: Oh yuck just had to buy new wellies! Give me a shout when your done we'll go for a drink and a dance!x
LM: Where will you be for mbv? X
TC: Sorry bad reception! My friends have my bad and are leaving, I might need to get them to drop my bag off with you, is that ok?
MJ: I'm sure that'll be cool. Do it through nileon if you don't mind. Cheers mate
MJ: God i've had enough of this!
LM: Where are you? Look for a clear dome umbrella with pink edge. Xx
LH: Hey where are you?
TC: I'm here, where shall I meet you?
TC: I'm on my own! Call or text when you can x
LH: Big top css next come along woo
SH: Hi- are you here yet / is there room in yr tipi? X
TC: Am in the tent for CSS, at the pillar at the back on th right facing the stage, where are you?
SH: We just got here n watching css so will meet u by the stars after the set
LH: We're right next to the pole
LH: Bottom end standing on some box thing!
LH: Where are you?


LH: We're in skid row what's your plans for the day?
NN: Bit lost - on me way!
NN: There now! x
LH: Hello!i'm at the bandstand and going to watch think!what you up to?x
LH: Come to the wicker mushroom outside bollywood x
LH: Hotchip left had side on the white flooring by the shop!
RM: Hey have yall gone to bed or still partying?
TC: Where are you now? X
TC: If we don't get in touch beforehand, text me a place to meet you for Hot Chip x
CJ: Andrzej u fuck! where r u? x x x x x x x x x x x carlz x x x x x
SH: You watching Florence (1.05)
SH: Yawn. Will c u guys when it's all over. We're watching trapeze artisits in the Florence tent. C u at 2.30? Where?
LH: We're here where are you?
SH: I don't know where that is- we're at continental drifts towards the front on right, come find us fx
SH: Oh god, we r where pete n pirates are- area known as skid row just a bit further towards exit than big top...
SH: Oops sos, it's sut - meet u at the back of the bollywood tent
MW: Where are you now?
MW: Fuck I just left there, am walking to the campsite. You?
MW: I'm in the shelter that looks like a shark at the bottom or red. Find me here.


LM: So... Sorry about yesterday. I basically drank some poison and KO'd for the entire day and night. My battery is very low. What you doing today? X
LM: Bagel dude noon. Nice. X
LM: I'm queueing for a baked spud, 2 up for the bagel dude. X
LH: Main stage down from the shop and the screen look out for a yellow flag! X
LH: Big top same place now!
LH: Big top pillar down from usual look for the big 'I' x
LH: Front right pllar now!
LH: Dada!
LH: Dada right side near the back!


RM: Hey i left pretty early this morning so didn't get a chance to say bye and thanks for super fun festival times! It was great to party with you guys


Wednesday, 3 September 2008

Basically a Bon Jovi fan

So while the only people who actually read this thing will doubtless snort in derision at this statement, I've never really tried to pretend I have particularly cool taste in music.

I mean, I clearly really like the music I'm into to a quite obnoxious, single minded degree, but to co-opt one of them there truisms, the more I know, the more I know I know nothing, and certainly writing for Plan B and, God help me, reading the Plan B forum (it's terrifying, about five people from Glasgow who should probably really just be down the pub together having lengthy discussions about stuff too obtuse to get into the magazine) has taught me that I really do know dick all. Nor, let's be honest, can I be arsed doing so.

But anyway. That's not really the issue. I am probably never going to appreciate free jazz, or even try to appreciate free jazz, it'd be a disaster. The point being that I've met so many people who regard guitar music as rather a gauche concept that it I've accepted the heights of poise and sophistication are never going to be scaled via the medium of indie, but still... some indie bands are more equal than otheres, and my recent headlong love affair with Parts & Labor (who even get saddled with the epithet 'noise band' from time to time, probably by journalists who want to pretend they like noise bands - hell, I'd do it...) at least set me to thinking I could have a conversation wherein I could bluff it that my music taste wasn't basically the same as yer basic American teenage girl (this according to LastFM).

Nope. Nowheres Nigh, the lead track of Parts & Labor's new album Receivers (you can download it here:, sounds like Bon Jovi. I knew this would happen. Obviously I love it and have listened to it about a gazillion times since the album turned up on Saturday, but it's this big polished, anthemic thing that makes me want to swill Bud Light and shout "hell yeah" (it's completely at odds to the seven minute folk drone things that make up the rest of the album, which I've obviously not listened to nearly as much.)

Er, I'm not sure that I really have a point to make here. Maybe that cool is relative or something, I dunno. Erm, but it is basically a case, I have realised, that my essential taste in music revolves around listening to the musical avant garde and then sort of cherry picking the bits that sound like stadium rock anthems - I'm not sure if that makes me a fool or makes Bon Jovi fans narrow minded. Probably a little of both. Oh god, I only really wrote this blog because it was bugging me and I felt vaguely like I should write something having omitted to say owt about Edinburgh or Leeds. They were good. That is all. Maybe I will say something about Bestival. Probably not. As I obliquely waffled in the last blog, I am a man, not a monkey
PS. speaking of which, apparently Sarah Palin genuinely doesn't believe in evolution... I mean for fuck's sake... I'm not actually sure what Bush's views on the subject are, but I suspect he's about as religious as the tinny of Becks Vier I'm drinking, I reckon I could be right in saying she'd be the the first honest to God (ho ho) religious loon in... I've got a horrible feeling that if McCain gets into power she's going to be just as band as Cheney, only with a sort of faux everywoman/country bumpkin shtick replacing the palpable aura of evil.
PPS. I had this thought the other day: 'oh, well, obviously I'm not going to vote for the oleaginous lying cunt, but if David Cameron got in and happened to be able to sort the economy out, I wouldn't actually complain'. Basically as well as becoming a Bon Jovi fan, I've become a Tory. Still, to give one reference to Edinburgh, I rather liked the man the legend Jon Richardson's observation of our PM that 'he's so shit, you know he must have something up his sleeve. Actually, sesing as you've made it to the bottom of this blog, have some Jon Richardson, he's funnier than I am, if you can believe that.