Tuesday, 25 December 2007

A Very Da Vinci Christmas (aka The Da Vinci Code Christmas Special)


PLEASE NOTE: Christmas specials don’t have to make any sort of logical or canonical sense. In fact it's best if they don't.

PLEASE FURTHER NOTE: The above may be compounded a little by the fact I haven't read The Da Vinci Code.


Popular fictional creation Robert Langdon had had a pretty mind-boggling last couple of weeks, what with the deaths and the exotic trans-European travel and the increasingly outlandish conclusions about the Catholic church his research was leading him towards.
“Dammit,” he muttered as he flailed listlessly in the second-class sleeper wagon forced upon him by the weak dollar/strong euro, “it’s Christmas Day and I’m caught up in this far-fetched quest when instead I could be sitting down to a turkey, spending some time with my family, and doing all those great things that we Americans do on Christmas Day.”
He sighed, heavily, and went back to his notes.
“Could he have been saying that... Joseph... was... was a killer robot? Mayb-"
His train of thought was abruptly interrupted by an insipid knocking at the compartment door.
“Mmm?” he responded, with academic distraction.
The door slid back, and for a brief second Langdon forgot all about killer robots. It was none other than the cowled form of Silas, the Opus Dei’s numero uno albino assassin/masochist.
“Shit,” muttered Langdon, “It can’t end like this! Not on this day of all days!”
“Don’t worry,” said the horrifying freak, cheerily, “though I may practise mortification of the flesh, that doesn't mean I don't believe in the magic of Christmas. Also I’m not as bad a guy as you might think – as it turns out the reason I’m killing all those people is... oh, you’ll find out later.”
“Hmm,” replied Langdon, “you’ll forgive me if I don’t trust you, seeing as I find things tend to settle with the least plausible conclusion. Why are you here?”
“Fair question,” nodded Silas. “In fact it’s a complete coincidence, I’m just off to... well, you’ll find out later. Actually I didn’t know you’d be on this train, I suppose it’s just a by-product of reduced Christmas Day service (though at least the Europeans at least have some) that we’ve both ended up here. But it’s good to see you – even homicidal, screwed up albinos get lonely at Christmas.”
“I’m just a bit concerned we wouldn’t really have anything to talk about,” muttered Langdon, cagily.
“Oh, I quite understand,” agreed Silas, helping himself to a seat. “But I think you might like to see this”.
He pulled out a small, vellum-bound book. Yellow and musty, it seemed to have more weight than such a small tome should, as if the centuries themselves were exerting their inexorable pull on an object that, by rights, should not exist in the modern world. It also smelled quite funny. Langdon reached for it with trembling hand.
“My God,” he exclaimed, distaste at the homicidal whackjob sitting opposite him briefly forgotten, “this must be 500 years old if it’s a day! These words... in Latin... it’s; it's a gospel? The gospel of... Bovinae? The cow gospel? The cow... the cow is Mary Magdalene! Does this contain the answers I've been looking for? But... but why?” he asked, saucer-eyed.
“Oh, no, it’s nothing like that," Silas laughed, with just a hint of real merriment. "This is indeed a gospel that the Catholic church suppressed from history, but it's not going to help you; we didn't so much suppress it through a cynical agenda as because it was a ridiculous crock of doggerel only popular with the most pig-ignorant peasants. But it does make for a fun festive read. Shall we?”
“Well,” sighed Langdon, “it is Christmas.”
“Great, I’ll read out loud and translate into fluent English at speed, then.”
"That would make things go easier."

GOSPEL BOVINAE

1 And it came to pass that it was really busy in Bethlehem for some reason or other.
2 I think the humans were counting each other, something to do with tax. Animals don’t have to do that, probably because we’re better.
3 The Romans thought it would make much more sense to make everyone shift about the country before they counted them.
5 Not really sure why.
6 So yeah, town was pretty full.
7 And lo! It came to pass that a certain donkey by the name of Donkey had been railroaded into leaving his digs in Nazareth and heading off to Bethlehem.
8 He had a pregnant chick on his back.
9 Despite some sage whinnying on behalf of Donkey, the chick and her fiancé arrogantly refused to make any reservations in advance and found themselves caught short when they got into Bethlehem.
10 Long story short: yours truly was about to chow down on some delicious hay when she went and gave birth all over it.
11 It was disgusting.
12 Afterbirth everywhere.
13 Though you probably didn’t need to know about that
14 Anyhoo, out in the countryside not so far away a bunch of sheep were hanging out, attended by some idiot shepherds.
15 And behold, an angel of the Lord stood before them and glory shone around. The sheep were pleased as punch, but the shepherds gibbered in fear, for they were sinful miscreants.
16 Fortunately the angel was only really there for the sheep, so it didn’t care.
17 Then the angel said to them: “Hi guys. So there’s a new Messiah coming to Bethlehem – you should check him out.
18 He’s a donkey, but they’re ten a penny in town - this will be the sign to you: You will find a Babe wrapped in swaddling cloths, lying in a manger. And the donkey there – well that’s your donkey, basically”.
19 Insensible with fear, the shepherds misunderstood this. I have a feeling it might cause quite a lot of confusion in the long run.
20 Fortunately it put sheep and shepherds on the same page in terms of going to Bethlehem, where they tracked down Donkey and flunkies quickly.
21 The shepherds looked at the baby human, got over-excited, and headed off yapping over-enthusiastically about having seen a baby in a stable.
22 Donkey and entourage stayed a lot longer, mind, during which time Donkey laid out his manifesto to us. I took some notes.
23 You're reading them
24 “Basically we’ll breed shitloads and humanity can look after us, only they’ll sometimes eat us. But not donkeys. Or dairy cows. Or adult sheep. And I’ll ban humans giving birth in our food. And, uh, I'll cut taxes. Sound good?”
25 “Visionary, visionary,” chorused the livestock, who had been looking for just this type of strong leadership.
26 In the meantime the humans had been dicking about in local politics – apparently the Jews were being oppressed by the Romans and the baby was going to do something about it.
27 The animals weren’t so bothered and probably ate some hay, I can't quite remember.

“Wow,” was all a gobsmacked Langdon could exhale.
“I know; you can see why we repressed that shit,” said Silas, allowing genuine merriment to enter his voice for once.
“How deep does this go?” asked Langdon with a feverish gleam in his eyes.
“Well, I think maybe it was St Thomas Aquinas who decided that we might as well suppress it. The peasantry were very ignorant back in the 13th century and some of them were starting to believe in this absurd pamphlet and worshipping farmyard animals in the hope it would lead to lower taxes.”
“No, no – don’t you see? This is conclusive proof God is a woman; no wonder the Catholic Church has been suppressing it.”
“Oh. Right. Well I can assure you that that’s not how it’s seen by Rome.”
“Yeah, but have a look at these blow ups of a painting by Manet,” exclaimed the agitated professor, pulling out a huge sheath of notes from his briefcase. “If you look in the upper right quadr-“.
But as he looked up to share his thoughts with the mysterious monk, he realised Silas had left as mysteriously as he’d arrived. More mysteriously, even. There was no sign of him but for the pungent Gospel. Langdon clutched it close to his chest and closed his eyes.
“Merry Christmas, Silas,” he whispered.
“Huh?” asked Sophie, who had been there all along, only asleep. “Were you talking to someone?”
“Oh Sophie,” he chuckled, ruffling her chic Judeo-Gaellic locks, “you wouldn’t believe me if I told you”.
“Oh, okay then. Look!” she exclaimed, delightedly, “it is snowing outside; joyeux Noel, Robert!”
“Joyeux Noel to you too Sophie. A joyeux Noel to everyone. Even Catholics.”

THE END.

Saturday, 22 December 2007

What, you haven't seen an albums of the year list before? Fuck you. Fuck you all.


1. of Montreal - Hissing Fauna, Are You The Destroyer?

Proof that moving to Norway, going mental and abandoning your wife and child is a great career move. It's worth it just for the lyrics (check out this slightly unwarrented acoustic version of TPIAGA - www.youtube.com/watch?v=gWIwe4Bu86A), but the music's incredible, kind of like all of Bowie and Prince's good albums mashed together and shot through with unreasonably erudite bitterness. And it would be worth it for The Past Is A Grotesque Animal alone, which is one of the greatest songs everr written. Also the Icons, Abstract Thee companion EP was very good, I hasten to add.


2. Arcade Fire - Neon Bible

I suppose if there's anything really wrong with it is that it fundamentally lacks charm, which Funeral had lots of. But I think that was fairly deliberate... it's a bombastic spirituality, and if the music was less good or Win Butler sounded insincere then it'd be horribly pretentious, but I think we need music like this; most people I've met with a problem with this record don't tend to like emotive music, I've noticed. Basically the best bit is where the military choir kicks in (on No Cars Go), and that's almost certainly the only album you can say that about.


3. Radiohead - In Rainbows

It's very good, the digital thingy didn't stop people realising that, good for them, I don't think the world needs a white, middle-class journalist saying anything further.


4. Modest Mouse - We Were Dead Before The Ship Even Sank

Despite topping the US charts etc I kind of think this album's been a bit underrated; it does an amazing job of reconciling mental early MM with the shinyness of Good News... Spitting Venom and Parting Of The Sensory are as progressive and exciting as anything they've ever done, elsewhere it's big, wonky tunes. I do wonder if Johnny Marr's presence has skewed the record in people's minds a bit, but those people are fools, I say.


5. Holy Fuck - LP

Experimental but impeccably dancable seectro violently thumped out by a bunch of thugs - visceral as you like and makes spectacle-wearing men standing behind laptops look foolish. Foolish-er.


6. Kevin Drew - Spirit If...

Again I think maybe a bit of an underrated album - it got good reviews, but I think the fact it's not BSS has maybe caused it to not be taken as seriously as it might. It never actually hits the highs of BSS at their best, but it's not as indulgent, way more focussed, and has a total punch the air (in an anti-phallogocentric stylee) anthem in Backed Out On The...


7. Marnie Stern - In Advance Of The Broken Arm

Finds the perfect balance between noise and a sense of fun. Patterns Of A Diamond Ceiling is
the best piece of avant garde music ever to also sound like Bon Jovi


8. Marissa Nadler - Songs III: Bird On The Water

Fucking dreadful title, but amazing music, lush, spine-tingling American gothic folk songs about, er, well mostly they seem to be about women dying, but hey ho. They die very poetically, and that's what's important.


9. PJ Harvey - White Chalk

Some of the songs are so short that I don't really know that they stand up on their own, but it's her first properly coherent record since Is This Desire?, and the title track is as good a tune as she's ever done. So yeah, she kind of sort of wasted the last ten years, but hey ho, that Spice Girls dress was pretty cool.


10. M.I.A. - Kala

In a weird way I think you could describe this as the hip hop yin to Hissing Fauna's yang, in that both share a sort of day glo, everything but the kitchen sink approach that makes something dense but exotic, tuneful and lush rather than horribly messy. Or you might just say that I know so little about hip hop I'm making lame indie comparisons because I fundamentally lack reference points. Both are good.


The Greatest by Cat Power scoops the award for the 2006 album that I foolishly didn't really get into until 2007 but probably would have made last year' top 10 otherwise. I suspect LCD Soundsystem's Sound Of Silver will do the same for next year. That is all.

Wednesday, 19 December 2007

The traditional ATP roundup thing. Okay?

FRIDAY


The horrible pub in Taunton: was actually brilliant, festively decorated, randomly friendly - good stuff, probably a lot more fun than watching Mark Linkous fall over, which is primarily what we missed.

Thurston Moore: Really nice, actually, I love his solo album Trees Outside The Academy, but it does teeter on the edge of prog, so I'd sort of assumed he'd wank it up outrageously, but he kept his metaphorical schlong away from his actual hand: no SY stuff, just the album played with feeling, and the biggest 'awww' of weekend when he dedicated Fri/End to 'Kim G'

Chrome Hoof: Um. Very odd. Lots of silver clothes and fun masks. No goat demi-god (as I'd been led to believe there might be, pah). I enjoyed it, and I was dancing, but on one level it's basically ludicrously byzantine prog, which being pissed as I was (i.e. really quite) I wasn't so much in the mood for at whatever the fuck time in the morning it was.

Silver Apples: Yeah, I know they invented music or electricity of something, but they seemed a tad shit to me. Though again, see the above comments about drinking.

Later: We fell in with the very drunk children two doors down from us. They did few favours for our impressons of the youth of today, insofar as they were complete and utter n00bs. Their greatest hits could probably be summed up thusly:

1. They had blithely trashed their room, content in the knowledge that one of their number had a magic credit card that would sort everything out. This included drawing on the TV in magic marker (who takes a marker to a festival?), stacking all their beds in precipitous fashion in order to clear the floor for a party they forgot to invite anyone to, and then on the second night somehow smashing their bathroom window from the inside out (with the ceiling fan I think, though fuck knows how), narrowly avoiding inflicting death by glass on me, and I was just walking past at the time.

2. One of them told us he really admired people our age going to festivals. Me and Laura are 26. He was 21. What did he realistically think was going to happen in the next five years?

3. Another of them was too paralytic to do anything but lie of the grass and sort of quietly scream. He may have been my favourite...


SATURDAY


Malcolm Middleton: I wonder if the whole We're All Gonna Die Christmas thing might be counterproductive in the long run, but akshuly that song didn't exactly get chanting in the terraces, while a completely new one, Blue Plastic Bags, completely won everyone over by dint of being the most anthemic tribute to British shitness since something or other by Pulp. Not exactly convinced he's an ATP act, but hey ho, it was fun (for us, dunno about him)


GZA: A room full of white people acting all hip hop is pretty funny. Highpoints included the repeated exhortation to 'put your dubyas up in the air' (an endorsement of the Wu Tang rather than George Bush, one suspects), the obligatory fat guy from the posse (he's probably really famous, I'm demonstrating my ignorance again) informing us 'I can smell some cheese', and the fact they were to only act of the weekend to refer to us as 'Minehead' as if it was some sort of magical seaside community full of rabid musos. Oh yeah, it was pretty good, the beats registered more with me than the rapping, maybe I am a racist.

A Hawk And A Hacksaw: It's amazing what a great contrast precision tooled hip hop beats and an old Hungarian dude soloing on a hammered dulcimer can make. Very nice indeed, I'd recommend to anyone.

Glen Branca & The Paranoid Critical Revolution: Despite having the world's most interesting looking guitar (it had a second body in lieu of a head), Branca was a sore disappointment, an old man making shrill tinkling noises. TPCR enlivened the end of the set, but they were excellent on their awn, real driving, rhythic, gutbucket noise. Laura and Tams hated it.

Julian Cope: Horrible prog metal drivvel, is this what having a festish for monoliths does to you? Though I heard an amusing story about why he dislikes a member of Plan B staff, which was nice. Though it didn't encourage me to believe he wasn't a dick.


Portishead: I've repeated this story so many times that even I'm bored of it (that takes a lot) but I was so completely bemused by the very fact they were there that I completely failed to register what was going on for the first three songs and just sort of stared dementedly into space. But then the fourth song was this really beautful, expansive ballad, and then they went straight into Glory Box and it all just clicked - sounding very strong (and not afraid of their past at all, as it had been rumoured...) and at least two of the four new songs tip top - bit faster, bringing a few more influences in that just one gal and some samples. Genuinely quite enthusiastic for the new record.


Jerry Sadowitz: I would call myself a milqetoast liberal for my response if I haven't actually been there, and I totally think comedy should push a few buttons, but this was basically just Sadowitz telling really vile racist jokes for about half an hour and a white middle class predominantly male audience laughing along heartily. Well, actually it was more like ten minutes, because that's when we walked out. And the only thing I've ever walked out of before was a talk by Christine Hamilton. Kiss that, Sadowitz.


Aphex Twin: (technically we saw the end of Om, er, seemed quite nice, which means our righteous ire at Sadowitz must have been running at gigawatt strength, seeing as how their bass frequencies were apparently enough to fell an elephant. Well, two of my mate's friends). Yes. Well, he was very good, was initially slightly worried that sectors of the audience were actually just going to stand there for the entire set stroking their chins and looking like they were doing something important, but it was frenzied as you like by about the hour mark. It would be fairly accurate to say that from about half an hour in me and McLaura were so refreshed that objective comment is quite difficult, but yeah - no mental noise experiments, more electroey than one might have thought (good thing), actually recognised a couple of things from Selected Ambient Works in there... well done, Mr Twin. Only slightly mystifying moment was when two very South West-looking gentlemen took positions on either side of the stage - the levels of irony required for that to be construed as anything other than utterly mystifying were in short supply at a set that started at 1.30am and more or less called for at least a semi-divorce from reality.


Later: Hmm. In retrospect we'd in no way peaked during Aphex himself, and hence the next few hours are fairly confusing, and that's even being pretty sure I remembered what happened.

1. We resolved to go back to the chalet, or possibly to watch to drink in the same room as the Ricky Hatton fight while not actually watching the fight. Either way, they wouldn't let us in to the sports bar because it was too full, which was awkward, because Holly had the only keycard and she was in the sports bar.

2. Me, Laura and Tams stood around in a phone booth out the back while me and Holly formulated a plan on the phone. I don't really know why we had to stand in the phone booth, but hey ho, body heat etc.

3. Holly's plan actually worked, in that there was some sort of anonymous storeroom out the back of the sports bar where we could have a secret rendezvous. Future ATP-goers should note this.
4. Went back to chalet, Tams passed out, me and Laura lay on the bed high as the proverbial kites listening to of Montreal. This confirms my suspicion that there is literally no situation where of Montreal is not appropriate.

5. Went back in to the main area, where I saw the only boxing match I've ever properly watching in my life. Only we turned up so far into round ten that my first question of 'why is Hatton sitting down' was met with the reply 'he's thrown in the towel.' Boxing is weak. Fortunately I was so gone that I was actually dancing to this.


6. Got chucked out for standing on the giant hot air balloon. However, I had managed to score a high visibility jacket by this stage, so nothing could shoot me down. Went back to chalet and shared my opinions on stuff for several hours, only my memory was so shot that my anecdotes all trailed off after ten seconds. That's like krypotonite to me.




SUNDAY



John Cooper Clarke: Aside from being generally brilliant, witty, etc, there was a palpable air of informal matiness that made it feel like you were just hanging out with your cool uncle or summat. Well, maybe, I have no idea what that would literally be like, but this was mondo fun; alos very heartening to see a large roomful of festival goers going apeshit over poetry.


Boris: I don't care what anyone says, it's basically Spinal Tap as done by three endearingly enthusiastic Japanese chaps. Very funny, though they blew it at the end slightly by having an ostentatiously massive gong that was completely inaudible. Which is very Spinal Tap, of course.


Black Mountain: The last time I saw Black Mountain they fucked the AC/DC malarkey up so badly that even the quiet songs merely came out as a sort of excruciating vibration. Here, on the hige Pavillion stage they sounded note perfect. The new album is fantastic, shamelessly retro but done by people who belt it out like a slightly nervy indie band, and thus somehow it doesn't seem gratuitous; they did complete justice to it - they closed with Bright Lights, which is the best track on the alb, but also 16-minutes-long and not commercially available yet; nonetheless worked a treat, everyone went apeshit, day won, woo.

Mad Lib Medicine Show: Probably shouldn't have been in an arena. Definitely not an arena full of nerds there to stare rather than dance. Though me and Mark kept it real with a dance off, oh yes.

Team Brick: Basically a special guy being noisy, with about a third of the noise good and the rest special. Naturally he's a Bristol hero.

Fuck Buttons: Ended up playing the slot that had been billed as TBC right up to the Sunday, thus we were getting into a frenzied panic that they might be either My Bloody Valentine or Radiohead. They were very definitely in fact Fuck Buttons, a band who I've accidentally missed on two seperate occasions, which therefore had made me assume they were overrated, as why else would I accidentally miss them. In actual fact brilliant, I can't be arsed to go all journalist, but check 'em out, they're the U2 of noise and may actually become quite popular if people can cope with the daft name (Holy Fuck = correct name for the band; Fuck Buttons = silly hipsterisation)

Aphex Twin (again): The experience of dancing to frenzied gabba while still relatively with it is quite an unusual one... um, I dunno, it was like being in some sort of mental excercise video at three in the morning. I enjoyed it.

And with that we went to bed and dreamt dreams of Pitchfork and Primavera. The end.

Monday, 17 December 2007

Zombie Film Review: Part three of an unexpectedly revived series (though that said - not really about zombies. I don't think)


Name? Rats: Night Of Terror


'Plot'? In a post-apocalyptic future, some bikers, who may or may not be the last human beings alive (if this is the case they're breathtakingly blase about it) turn up at an illogically vast bunker full of food, water, and 'every type of plant'. But gasp! There are freshly killed corpses here. As it turns out they've been done for by a bunch of passive-aggressive rats. Our heroes dick around, meeting the rat 'menace' with a volatile cocktail of mixture of unreasonale cowardice and demented overreaction, best embodied in a scene where the bearded hero/group leader immolates one of his men with a flame-thrower because the flunky has, like, two rats on him. The rats dick around spectacularly, as despite the assertion that they hate human beings, they're generally content to squeak away merrily and not bother people who are actually touching them. Oh yeah, the zombie thing. Well after being bitten in manner that could only be described as 'clearly non-fatal', several of the characters swiftly die. And then wander around for a bit in a quasi-zombified state. One of them inflates to a vast size then explodes with a loud booming noise to reveal several fully grown furry chums inside him, so apparently he's been infected with, um, rat..? Oh yeah, and at the end the two survivors are rescued by humanoid figures in biohazard suits, who turn out to be giant rats. Disturbingly I saw it coming.


How irritating? The token bad apple in the biker gang - a chap by the name of Duke - seems utterly oblivious to the danger, and constant attempts to sabotage the group's every action for his own glorifiaction, despite the fact this vastly increases the chances he might die. Which indeed, he does. He's basically a woefully inadequate replacement for a villain with a personality. The most irritating thing, of course, is that the film refuses to acknowledge how shit the rats are at, er, well to be honest, everything.


Most ridiculous moment? The ending deserves a look in, but actually the most insane scene is rodent-free. In order to shoehorn in the obligatory copulation, early on we see two of the characters having really violent, noisy sex. Only they're doing it in a brightly lit room, with the rest of the gang sitting a metre or so away, reading books and whatnot. Futuristic attitudes towards love-making? Nope: the rest do get pissed off, it's just it takes them about two minutes of the world's loudest sex right in front of their faces before any of them notice anything's amiss.


Most Glaring Plot Flaw? The rats don't eat anything besides humans, which means they would quite blatantly have starved to death years previously. Also they're shit.


How cheap? The main problem is plenty of rats, no animal trainer. The critters are so passive they actually have to be dropped on top of the heroes in order to give the vaguest semblance of attacking (I think it's safe to say a LOT of rats were harmed in the making of this film). That, or a degree of, er, directorial trickery is needed. The best comes near the end, when the rats are smashing down a door. On the heroes' side the frame is reverbrating as if from a hail of hammer blows from Thor himself. Then the camera cuts to the other side and you see some rats, milling around casually in the general vicinty of the door, but not actually touching it.

Monday, 26 November 2007

The Book Of Genesis (annotated)

This is kind of a short story, so if you are in sane majority (if not totality) of the world's population who doesn't want to read a short story by me, you'd best stop reading pretty sharpish. I realise it's vastly pretentious posting a short story on a blog, but seeing as how it's basically a bunch of cheap digs at the Bible I knocked up over the last two evenings, I figured I might as well dispose of it somewhere. The general idea is that I started reading the Bible at a friend's wedding and I thought it was funny how vague it was. Anyway.

THE BOOK OF GENESIS (annotated)

BOOK 1 (condensed [it goes on a bit])

Day 1: God creates heaven and earth, followed by light, which kicks off day one. Naturally it’s blasphemous to point out that the first day thus massively overstepped the 24 hour mark.
Day 2: Creates land and sky.
Day 3: Plants.
Day 4: Sun, moon and stars.
Day 5: Fish and birds.
Day 6: Beasts, man and woman. God gives permission for creatures to eat stuff.

THE END

BOOK 2 (annotated)

1 Thus the heavens and the earth were completed in all their vast array.

“I’m great,” thought God.

2 By the seventh day God had finished the work he had been doing; so on the seventh day he rested from all his work.

God would be the first to admit he was light on reference points, seeing as how his completing the heavens and earth in all their vast array was the first thing that anybody had ever done. But he was fairly sure six days was good going. Also he’d just done the first thing ever. That was pretty good too.

He did, however, have the nagging feeling that given his previous workrate, taking a day off might arguably be to the detriment of the world.

“Hmm, better think of a way to justify this, those bastard angels might start grumbling...”

Incidentally, God had created the celestial host by way of flunkies. Despite their vast power, they weren’t the most colourful bunch of individuals, so it didn’t seem especially important to mention them. But they were around; probably a day five or six job.

3 And God blessed the seventh day and made it holy, because on it he rested from all the work of creating that he had done.

“Right, it’s holy, so shut up, everyone has to have it off. Those are the rules, okay? Maybe I’ll create another planet in the next six days. Or maybe I’ll concentrate on being holy for a while.”

The fish, birds and beasts pretty much ignored him, but he couldn’t really be bothered to smite them. They were basically all idiots, after all. The angels chilled out with aplomb, but then again, that wasn’t exactly a change in direction.


4 This is the account of the heavens and the earth when they were created. When the LORD God made the earth and the heavens—

5 and no shrub of the field had yet appeared on the earth and no plant of the field had yet sprung up, for the LORD God had not sent rain on the earth and there was no man to work the ground,


“So, like... what have the birds and beasts been, y’know... drinking for the last two days?” drawled Lucifer, one of the seraphim. Or maybe one of the cherubim.

“They’re fine,” God replied, testily.

“But dude, I’m just saying... don’t you think it’s kind of cruel leaving them without water for over 24 hours?”

“They’re fine,” God snapped back, with a wrathful gleam in his eyes.

“Just saying,” muttered Lucifer under his breath. “If it’d been me I’d have created the fresh water before the beasts and birds. (Also where have all the freshwater fish been hanging out for the last two days?)”

“Shut up, that’s where,” replied God, who could hear the muttering on account of his being omnipotent, omnipresent and omniscient.

6 but streams came up from the earth and watered the whole surface of the ground—

Incidentally, the freshwater fish certainly didn’t evolve from the saltwater fish or anything like that. Because that would be immoral. In fact they had been suspended in a celestial aquarium. God had had some vague idea of unleashing them to smite those who had angered him at a later date, but in retrospect pike are, at best, the Argos version of sharks, and the rest of them; well, they weren’t exactly ravening danger machines. Also the angels kept forgetting to feed them. So everything panned out pretty well and made complete sense.

7 the LORD God formed the man from the dust of the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and the man became a living being.

“Uh, didn’t you do this on day six?” asked a puzzled Lucifer.

“Don’t you have anything better to do?” growled God.

“Not really, man.”

“Well piss off”.

And he did. But he wasn’t very happy.

8 Now the LORD God had planted a garden in the east, in Eden; and there he put the man he had formed.

“Well, this is nice,” commented the as yet unnamed man.

“Nice? Nice!?” sputtered God. “This is paradise. It’s literally the best place on Earth. It took me fifteen minutes to make. Fifteen minutes.

“Very impressive” replied the nameless individual, somewhat weakly. “And of course, it’s got a lot of potential. So you’re in charge around here, then?”

“Potential?” roared the Almighty. “It’s the single most wonderful place ever created. In fact, it’s the single most wonderful place that ever will be created. Because I am not giving up fifteen minutes of my time again if it means I’m going to be spoken to like this.”

“All I meant was it was maybe a little lacking in features Mr, er...” said the unkown man, timidly extending a hand.

“Oh right, fair point,” nodded God, distractedly. “It is basically just a load of grass and rivers and beasts. And those good for nothing freshwater fish. I could have sworn I created trees on day three.”

9 And the LORD God made all kinds of trees grow out of the ground— trees that were pleasing to the eye and good for food. In the middle of the garden were the tree of life and the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.

“Oh that’s better,” said the man. “That’s really... quite a lot better. Could you perhaps show me how to do that, um, sir? I have some great ideas.”

“I beg pardon?’ growled God.

“Well, I thought maybe some sort of rockery or something?”

“Listen pal,” rumbled the Most High, “I’m the guy who creates stuff. In fact I’m the guy who created everything. Not them,” he said, gesturing at a clump of angels getting silly on the fruit of the tree of knowledge of good and evil, “and certainly not you. Alright?”

“So you’re my dad?”

“Exactly. But no hugging. Worship me from afar. And call me Father. With a capital F. Now go play.”

10 A river watering the garden flowed from Eden; from there it was separated into four headwaters.

“Okay, so I’m just going to pop out now,” the man said to no-one in particular. Except also to God, who was omipotent, omnipresent and omnisicient. But not really paying any attention at that time.

11 The name of the first is the Pishon; it winds through the entire land of Havilah, where there is gold.

“Now this is more like it,” declared the satisfied man.

12 (The gold of that land is good; aromatic resin and onyx are also there.)

Oh yes, I really like this place. Eden’s great, well, okay, for a holiday, but this is somewhere I could live. That’s lovely resin.”

13 The name of the second river is the Gihon; it winds through the entire land of Cush.

“Not so hot on Cush. No onyx.”

14 The name of the third river is the Tigris; it runs along the east side of Asshur. And the fourth river is the Euphrates.

“Nope, I think I’ll be settling down in Havilah. Definitely. Definitely definitely.”

15 The LORD God took the man and put him in the Garden of Eden to work it and take care of it.

“Look, young man,” said a testy God, “I don’t know which bit of ‘paradise on earth’ you don’t understand, but the Garden of Eden is the best place ever created, it’s a lovely place, and moreover it’s a place created specifically for you, by me. So if you could kindly stay there then I won’t have to smite you and we won’t need to hear any more about this.”

“I completely undertstand where you’re coming from fath-’ began the man.

“That’s Father. And you don’t undertstand where I’m coming from because my mind is infinite.”

“ Yes. But it’s just that there’s not really very much to do.”

“Oh, alright. I’ll put you in charge, how’s that?”

“But Father, in charge of what? Everything runs in complete harmony, it’s really nice, but I honestly think I’d be much happier living in Havilah. I mean you created that too, so surel-"

The man was cut off by a divine pronunciation.


16 And the LORD God commanded the man, You are free to eat from any tree in the garden;

17 but you must not eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, for when you eat of it you will surely die.


“Father, with the best will in the world, if Eden has a lethal tree in it, maybe I should just go back to Havilah? I mean, I completely accept it’s not as good as Eden, but they’ve got grapes the size of your thumb there that, well, they’re good. I think it’s the volcanic soils.”

“One: shut up about Havilah, or I’ll smite it, so help me. Two: there’s loads to do in Eden. The angels are enjoying it.”

“They’re eating from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.”

“Well, yes, but they’re divine beings, they’re hardly going to eat satsumas, are they? Anyway, the birds and the beasts, they’re having fun.”

“They’re also eating from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.”

“Hmm, yes, yes, that’s really not really ideal, but they’re basically idiots. The knowledge of good and evil is pretty much useless to their tiny brains.”

“I just feel a bit excluded.”


18 The LORD God said, It is not good for the man to be alone. I will make a helper suitable for him.

“Well that would be nice,” said the man, brightening up. “Maybe you could make another one of me.”

“Oh right, and maybe I’ll just do whatever you say, shall I?” replied God. “Now I come to think about it, what about the beasts? There’s loads of them, I’m sure some of them must be fun. No need to discriminate against them because they’re idiots.”

“Oh,” said the man, a little crestfallen. “Well what type of beast would you recommend?”

“I dunno, they’re all such dreary company I haven’t really bothered to subdivide them. Hairy fools. Hmm, actually, there is something you could do for me; I’m sure you’ll enjoy it very much.”


19 Now the LORD God had formed out of the ground all the beasts of the field and all the birds of the air. He brought them to the man to see what he would name them; and whatever the man called each living creature, that was its name.

The Bible does not record exactly how long this took the man, but given there are currently 1.5 million named animals on the planet, and for the sake of argument (and because there’s definitely no such thing as evolution) let’s add a mere half million extinct animals, then assuming Adam worked an eight hour shift six days a week with a one hour lunch break and an average two minutes required to name each animal, that works out at about 30 years and six months. While he wasn’t especially happy with the length of the task and the fact it didn’t really seem to be helping him close in on life companionship, his general lack of perspective on the flow of time meant that at the very least he didn’t really know any better. He also had some fun about 25 years in calling loads of birds ‘tits’. Having not eaten from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, he was spared resenting God for not doing it himself in, like, one second, but fortunately he hadn’t, and was in an optimistc frame of mind when the Heavenly Father turned up at the end of the task.

“Took your time, but well done,” said God, heartily. “I might give them all proper names if I get round to it, but for now, that’ll do. And as a special treat, I thought I’d let you choose yourself a name. Pretty benevolent, eh?”

“Yes, quite,” agreed the man. “Well I’ve had a long time to think about this... and after much consideration I’ve decided that I would like to be called Optimus Prime.”

“Riiiiight. No, the thing is, what may have sounded like ‘choose’ to you was actually ‘your name’s Adam.’”


20 So the man gave names to all the livestock, the birds of the air and all the beasts of the field. But for Adam no suitable helper was found.

“You’re right Father, they are all idiots.”

“Of course I’m right. Now shut up, I have a plan.”


21 So the LORD God caused the man to fall into a deep sleep; and while he was sleeping, he took one of the man's ribs and closed up the place with flesh.

While this was vastly more time-consuming than the methods by which he’d created every other living thing on the planet, God was keen on correcting Adam’s shoddy posture.

22 Then the LORD God made a woman from the rib he had taken out of the man, and he brought her to the man.

“Right, check this out. Not bad, eh?”

“Oh God, my ribcage really hurts!”

“Unbelievable,” tutted God, “unbelievable.”

“Could you, please maybe do something about the pain? I think I’m going to pass out.”

“I think that’s for the best. It’ll teach you a lesson.”

And so Adam passed out. On one level God was quite bored waiting for him to wake up, but on another he was omnipresent and thus joined the angels and the beasts at a divine feast at the tree of the knowledge of good and evil and had a jolly good time. Eventually Adam came to and contemplated the woman.

“Th-thank you, oh Lord,” said Adam, doing his best to ignore the black flecks darting in front of his swimming vision.

“That’s better,” noted God, approvingly. “Now have some fun with her, eh?”


23 The man said,
This is now bone of my bones
and flesh of my flesh;
she shall be called 'woman',
for she was taken out of man.


“So how does that work? Etymologically speaking?” asked the woman.

“Ooh, don’t know,” replied Adam. “Maybe a compaction of ‘womb’ and ‘man’? or maybe it makes sense in the original Hebrew.”

“Psst,” growled God to Adam with a whisper like thunder, “stop treating woman like an equal, she’s a flunkie, enjoy it. I created you in my image, and if there’s one thing my image has, it’s flunkies. Do some ordering before you embarrass me.”


24 For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and they will become one flesh.

“Are we married?” asked the woman.

“Er, I don’t know,” replied Adam.

God glared at him balefully.

“I mean, that is to say, shut up. Um. Woman. Let’s have joyous procreational sex. But, er, only if we’re married.”

God nodded, approvingly.


25 The man and his wife were both naked, and they felt no shame.

This was very fortunate, as there was no such thing as clothes.

THE END

Monday, 8 October 2007

Zombie Film Review: Part two of a soon to be abandoned series


Name? Zombie Flesh Eaters 2
'Plot'? Also known in Italy as Zombi 3, it is, somewhat confusingly, not actually a sequel to anything. Which is good for things, I suppose. Basically it runs thus: man nicks zombie serum from government agency (seemingly without motivation), turns into zombie, gets taken down by idiot army men who burn his body, spreading his ash everywhere and turning loads of people into zombies. The government responds by massacring anybody in the infected area, which happens to include our 'heroes' (I use the term very loosely), a bunch of soldiers and civilians who gradually get whittled away as a result of their own immense stupidity until two of them purloin a helicopter and peg it.

How irritating? The sheer unlovability of the needlessly large cast of squealing women and emotionally retarded men is quite staggering. Worse though is a DJ whose entire patter is based on wittering incomprehsibly about global warming, something he bewilderingly continues to do when turned into a zombie.

Most ridiculous moment? Cheerily establishing the fact this film has no internal logic whatsoever, a character opens a fridge only for a floating zombie head to come out and, y'know, fly around a bit and attack her. It is funny, mind, though of course entirely unintentionally.

Most glaring plot flaw? None of the zombies actually eat any flesh. Also they seem to cheerily vacillate between brainless automata and go getting corpses who don't let death stop them being able to run a radio station.

How cheap? The helicopter says 'we have some money'. A flock of zombie birds that actually appear to be hand puppets say 'and we spunked it all on the bloody heliopter'...

Zombie Film Review: Part one of a soon to be abandoned series


Yes, I have decided to review some zombie films, okay? That's what people 'do' on blogs. This is because on Saturday I watched Zombie Creeping Flesh, the worst film I have ever seen and I feel I should write about it in a format that optimistically supposes there will ever be more than two, which there probably wont be.


Name? Zombie Creeping Flesh

'Plot'? Er. For reasons not especially clear, there's a really violent zombie rat hanging out at an enigmatic chemical plant in the middle of New Guinea. It infects everyone and turns them into zombies, thus presumably dicking things up for the people of New Guinea. Some sort of SWAT team type affair is sent in by what one supposes is Italy (it being an Italian film), for, er, some reason... after picking up some itinerant journalists they go through a mind bogglingly repetitive number of encounters with the undead, until they arrive at the chemical plant, where unsurprisingly it turns out that everyone is now a zombie. Not really having anything to do, our team sort of potter around until they get surrounded and eaten by zombies.

How irritating? The characters are terribly drawn, but by far the worst thing about them is the fact they keep forgetting a) that the zombies are evil dangerous monsters that want to eat their faces and b) the only way you can kill them is to shoot them in the head. It's basically a really cack-handed way of trying to put tension into the zombie encounters, which all take the form of one character casually putting his or herself in harm's way by wandering up to the zombies and talking to them, followed by the SWAT team shooting them in the body to no effect, at the last minute remembering to zap them in the head, which kills them really easily. Effectively it's just a looped film of a bunch of idiots being crap at zombie fighting. One of the soldiers dies because he decides that rather than search a basement, as he's been ordered, he instead ought to in fact put all his guns down, put on a dress, and dance around heedlessly into darkened rooms. The result is that you find yourself joyless screaming orders at a bunch of characters you hate, informing them to stop being so painfully twattish it actually hurts your eyes to watch.

Most ridiculous moment? Shortly before getting her tongue ripped out, the last journalist has a moment of dazzling clarity and sees through exactly what's been going on. Yes, the West, being overpopulated, has collectively decided to kill everyone in the Third World so there's, um, more room. The chemical plant was working on accomplishing this, but - butterfingers! - it accidentally turned everyone into zombies. What. The. Fuck?

Most glaring plot flaw? See the above, but other than that, the fact the global response to the zombie menace is to send in four borderline mentally ill soldiers with absolutely no back up and not much in the way of an actual mission. It also leads us to believe they arrived at an airport in New Guinea without seeing or interacting with another human soul and didn't suppose it was slightly odd.

How cheap? About 20 per cent of the film is made up up of stock footage of jungle animals and tribal rituals. On the plus side these are the best-shot bits of the film; on the minus side ZCF manages to undermine its confused attempt at taking a pro-Third World moral stand by splicing the stock and new footage together in such a way that it implies people from New Guinea are not only cannibalistic, but too stupid to realise you should get the shit out of the way when an army of corpses attacks you.

Monday, 3 September 2007

Leeds Festival - a somewhat unreliable post-mortem

Um, so in the best tradition of, er, my near-identical old blog I feel compelled to minutely dissect my festival weekend. I've slightly modified the Facebook blog settings, so I'm assuming this won't clog up anybody's newsfeed. If it does please tell me and I shall remove henceforth. Er, yes, so anyway... Leeds - of course this year I was out of it for, er, much of the time, but hey ho... here's a potted history.

FRIDAY

All bands prior to Cold War Kids - Mark was doing his hair or something, so we got to the festival somewhat late. On the plus side this did mean that when schoolkids came up to us enthusing about Hadouken!, we could appear even more puzzled...
Cold War Kids - really good actually, they're a bit more impressive in a small room - that sort of tension where the guitarist and the bassist look like maybe they're going to beat the shit out of each other was a bit diffused - but they still held the big tent wonderfully, still had that biblical fire going on, and with only half an hour to play it sort of concentrated those big three singles on the album, which really got the crowd going.
Bit between CWK and the end of Nine Inch Nails - me, Mark and Simo stumbled blindly around the market stalls while on a moderately inadvisable beer, JD and poppers binge. This was largely sparked by Simo's hatred of Kate Nash, and in retrospect it was probably somewhat more fulfilling than the frightening pile-up of accents that would have been 10,000 northerners bellowing Nash's songs back at her. What I did discover was that in my first year actually staying in the guest camping, I have become an atrocious snob and now regard the regular camping area in the same way a member of the 17th century French aristocracy might have regarded a peasant. A black peasant. With AIDS. It's better in guest camping - there's loads of room and nobody tries to burn your stuff. Weirdly the toilets and showers are way worse than the regular area, but obviously you can just lie to the peasants about that. Which makes you even more like a member of the French aristocracy.
The end of Nine Inch Nails - Yeah, so I got the time wrong by an hour and we missed almost all of it. On the plus side I only really know two of their songs - Closer and Hurt - and those were the two they played so, er, yeah, I'm a philistine, but a happy one. On record the Johnny Cash version has sort of undermined NIN's, but live it was wonderful, Reznor just singing on his own in the dark with a pretty waterfall of lights behind him.
Smashing Pumpkins - Er, I would like to have been a little less drunk here, and a combination of booze and a very pretty lady distracted me a little, but, well, I was less distracted than Powell, who went to the loo and spent 45 minutes allegedly speaking to Donny Tourette. A fact he didn't remember until the next day. But anyways, they were good. the fact they were trying to balance plugging a relatively bland album with some, uh, daring choices from the past kind of blunted the impact - they should perhaps have either gone hell for leather and obnoxiously rammed Zeitgeist down our throats and been grumbled about but remembered for the rest of the festival, or else just gone for a nostalgia porn set. And, er, well - To Sheila: massively, massively appreciated. Ghost And The Glass Children - I suppose the sheer ballsiness was breathtaking, obviously it's a million years long and the first half is toss. But fair dos, the second half rules. But HEAVY METAL MACHINE??? As the closer?!? Christ on a bike, no wonder me and the aforementioned pretty lady found we'd accidentally ended up at the front by the end of the show. But some good stuff, great full on electric version of Tonight, Tonight, Stand Inside Your Love wonderful, and if it was inconsistent those little moments like Hummer and To Sheila very welcome. Think there's definitely mileage in this comeback, but that said in the big American rock bands from my childhood stakes, Pearl Jam were much, much better last year. Of course, The Pumpkins looked like they were fresh descended from Valhalla itself next to the Chillis, but more of them later...
Post-Pumpkins - We drank our own metric volume in wine. We hung out with a lovely family from Kendal. We continued to amuse ourselves with the poppers until, sprawled out on the floor in something approaching a stupor, I mistook the poppers bottle for an, er, opening cork (shut up) and poured them out over the grass. Me and Mick proceeded to sniff the chemical-sodden grass in rather undignified fashion. I bothered another pretty lady. Me and Mark split the mystery pill 'Donny' had given him, though in fairness some credence was given to it being Mr Tourette himself by the fact said pill did absolutely diddly squat. Mark lost his bag, got really depressed, found his bag again, but was too pissed to remember to cheer up and sloped off to bed in A Huff. Mercifully the wine and the fire both ran out around 4am and I too got myself out of there.

SATURDAY

Sadly unlike Powell I can't sleep indefinitely in a scorching hot sweatbox of a tent (while fully clothed and sweating like a pervert - it's chuffing disgusting), and needless to say I felt terrible when I woke up about four hours later. As a fun alternative to actual rest I just stood in the hour-long queue for the shower and stared blankly into the ether. As previously intimated, the shower was rubbish, though I did get a certain feeling of utterly unwarrented accomplishment when I made it to the front and my luxury style tepid trickle. At the risk of tuning this into a review of showers, the hoi polloi get a lovely warm one that's easy to access - the 'downside' is that they're in large communal blocks, which is like, um, devastating - the women are forced to endure the sexiest place in the entire festival, the men have to contend with the chance somebody might violate them by accidentally catching a glimps of their johnson. Brutal.

Oh yeah, so I saw quite a lot of bands this day, but got up to precious few antics. Poor form, I know. Here are a few words.
The Pipettes - They worked really well in the noon slot as a sort of sugary jolt into the day. In fact I think they should definitely play all their gigs at noon.
The Long Blondes - By contrast I don't think The Blondes are really a prime outdoors mainstage band, they need somewhere a bit seedier, though Jackson was doing her best to rock the saucy 70s secretary vibe to the fullest... also wot, no Seperated By Motorways? The big pop songs worked well though, it's just a shame, because those aren't actually their best tunes, it's just that in a large field in broad daylight, You Could Have Both sounds like utter wank, despite in actual fact being brilliant.
Gogol Bordello - Eh, y'know, bonkers gypsy guy hypes us up with songs we'll probably never actually buy, but which sound unfeasibly brilliant at the time.
Gossip - Touting the same set as two years ago, only now bulked out with snippets of pop songs in the intros (in case the nasty art rock fwightens ooo) and loads of sanctimonius blather from Ditto. The next album's going to be shit, isn't it?
Maximo Park - Hmm, I dunno, they're a very good live band and that but I didn't especially feel it this time. I think the problem might be mostly down to the terrible songs off their rubbish second album. Well, that's a huge exaggeration, it's okay, but I think the diffreence between a song like Apply Some Pressure and one like Girls Who Play Guitars is made pretty manifes when there sveral thousand people as the litmus. Meh.
Interpol - I dunno, everybody else hated them for being boring... I actually quite liked them for being boring. Well not boring as such, but Obstacle No. 1 and Slow Hands aside, it was an unbelievably austere set for a band playing so high up the bill, but it had a certain majesty to it, I thought. Nobody else did. Ending with Not Even Jail rather than, well, something off the first album, was a bridge slightly too far, mind. And Paul Banks looks like a homeless guy these days, it's weird...
Kings Of Leon - Were fun, I suppose, but they didn't really really engage me that much. Maybe that's because I'm not really a fan of the music. Actually that's almost certainl exactly what it it was.
Patrick Wolf - As the evening progressed, me and Mark started battling a more or less uncontrollable urge to hear The Magic Position by Patrick Wolf. This was very handy, as lo! it turned out Patrick Wolf was at the festival, tucked away second from top in the very bizarrely located Carling Stage (it was, like behind the funfair or something. Fair play to the festival organiser for lending its name to the most obscure stage of the bunch, though I suppose fact its name was on all the beer probably made up for that). Er, yeah, he was brilliant, as ever he does the songs way better live than on record, threw in a very nice Donna Summer cover and a very sarcastic joke about the fact he and Razorlight probably don't share much in the way of fanbases.
Ash - Well, we only wandered in at the end due to crossover with Wolf, but decent enough greatest hist based set save for what I'd characterise as two minor problems:
(i) There's basically no point to Ash now that they're in their 30s
(ii) They did what appeared to be a 10 minute bass breakdown dureing Kung Fu, which is, in original form, only about a minute long. Poor form Wheeler, poor form.
And that dear reader was that - we are getting very old now, and decided that but a couple more drinks and tucking up in bed by 1am to better gird our loins for Sunday would be wise. In light of the events of Sunda night, I would, with retrospect, describe this as not so much wise as semi-prophetic.

SUNDAY

Eagles Of Death Metal: The only even slight downside to this set was that our enjoyement of it couldn't rival that of Jesse 'The Devil' Hughes - he declared it was the best show he'd ever played and he looked pretty close to tears for a lot of it. I did not feel like that. However, bloody good start to the day, and you feel less dirty singing the lyrics 'shit, goddamn, I'm a man, I'm a man' with a vast crowd rather than on your own...

TBC

Monday, 6 August 2007

Unreasonable grumblings about hugely loved pop cultural phenomenon


As I've been saying for what I can only describe as Quite Some Time Now, there's a lie, largely propagated by those bastards in the media (particularly arts journalists, if that can even be called journalism, pah), that The Simpsons is still as funny as it was.


Admittedly this lie has been aided by The Simpsons Movie, which is actually pretty funny, the contrary bastard, but in general terms... well, the TV show's just ridiculous now, a completely insane and out of control Homer running around between countries gibbering incoherently to a slew of crassly shoehorned in celeb guests. But people keep talking about it as if it really is the same as it was in the ninieties... it's a bit like children pretending their parents are still in love or whatever when in fact ma and pa now only communicate with violence and are only staying together for the kids. Maybe, I don't know, my parents are still happily married. Ha.


Anyway, it's ridiculous, but seeing as hardly anybody watches new Simpsons it really didn't matter that much, as you could pretty much ignore it save to grumble about the odd article. But now, Christ on a bike, every fucker's gone onto the Simpsons Movie website and done that desogn yourself as a Simpsons character thing and is now sporting an avatar of themselves that looks a bit like them and urgh, I dunno, it's a horribly brilliant viral campaign, but it's really depressing in some ways, I think. It just seems to mean The Simpsons is now in a position where it can trade off past glories so much that it's genuinely irrelevant what it does now - if it sells off a little bit of itself then that's all it needs to do to get everyone enthused all over again without actually needing to be good - it's become another brand, which is sad.


My even more tortured opinions on Transformers shall wait for another blog, but I do think there's a certain degree of hypocricy in that while Transformers has been slammed for being in part a glorified plug for some toys/cars, The Simpsons has been praised for shamelessly OTT marketing tactics (renaming 7/11s Kwik E Marts, that big Homer on the hil by that dude with the penis and the club) which are devoted to keeping a very profitable brand that's long past its sell by date afloat. NME presumably wasn't paid to plug the Simpsons avatar maker ad nauseum for an entire issue, for instance, but the uber-cool guys and gals there - headed up by Conor McNicholas, pictured, oh yes - got so giddy over the picture maker that the basically spent an issue plugging it when really some stuff about bands would have been nice...
Maybe I am just bitter because the two versions of me that got done got deleted by accident. Or maybe 'accident'. Either way I feel terribly left out, and yet unable to muster the enthusiasm to do a third avatar. Sob.

Sunday, 5 August 2007

Um

This is only here for the sake of having something here, you must understand. Don't get excited, y'hear?

And if you have no idea to what this pertains, observe the final post at www.myspace.com/andrzej_lukowski.

Or don't