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Archive for August, 2003

44 strings

Posted: August 31st, 2003, by Marceline Smith

Here’s an interesting project for you called 44 strings since the idea is to release a compilation of tracks by bass and double bass players. It’s organised by the nice people at mrw44 and they’re touting for submissions at the moment so go find out more.

Random links

Posted: August 28th, 2003, by Marceline Smith

Some nice random links for you from my IE history, none of which involve reading about me for a change:

Pixel Decor – (lovely lovely retro patterns for desktops and backgrounds)

– NeeKlamy’s Zelda fairy trapped in a bottle plush. I want one!

Insultingly Stupid Movie Physics take an in depth look at The Core (“It’s the worst physics movie…ever….”) and end up showing exactly why it’s such a great movie. Thanks to BBC News for that link.

Children reviewing indie music (william: i feel like i might say “hey hey” and i was thinking about a robot). Thanks (again) to TMN for that one.

Wesley Willis RIP

Posted: August 23rd, 2003, by Dave Stockwell

Wesley Willis RIP.

Edinburgh International Games Festival

Posted: August 18th, 2003, by Marceline Smith

I had my dad visiting this weekend so we decided to get on a train to Edinburgh and see some stuff. Partially because the Edinburgh International Games Festival was on, it has to be said. We also did some fairly educational traipsing round the Royal Museum and Our Dynamic Earth so here’s what I learned, in no particular order:

DinoBirds are better than birds but not as great as dinosaurs

– Leopard seals are unexpectedly ENORMOUS and extremely scary

– It was pretty cold in the Ice Age

– Tropical rain showers are pretty lame when compared to a typical Glasgow day but Glasgow downpours could be made more fun by having a man work the crowd beforehand.

– Children are more scared of a shark than a Cyclops

– I know lots about Antarctica, strangely

– My favourite bridge building era is…err…oh heck, I’ve forgotten

– A child frantically punching his hands at lightning speeds can kill as many ninjas on the EyeToy game as a child boredly flapping his arms about and not even looking at the screen.

– Unicorns are really twee

– having a cinema screen on the ceiling so you can lie on your back while you watch stuff is a fantastic idea (except for when you have to get up at the end)

– going back 15,000 million years in a time machine only takes a couple of minutes

– At the same time as the mountains and valleys of the earth were formed by glaciers, balloon animals roamed the icy wastes (or maybe a small child left one there)

– Nothing we saw was as exciting as catching pigs in Zelda Wind Waker

i really don’t like harmony korine in the slightest

Posted: August 16th, 2003, by Ollie

his popularity baffles me. somehow he is mister credibility, despite making films so corny it hurts to watch them. obviously they’re not corny in the traditional sense, but in every one of his films there’s one big fucked up scene where someone steals a dead baby or gets aids or some such crap, and it’s always filmed like it’s trying to say “ooooooh, can you bear to watch this? this is the most fucked up film you’ve ever seen and isn’t it horrible and aren’t i clever?”. no you’re not clever, you’re an idiot.

i really don’t like kevin smith either. another director who seems to be very popular amongst people my age. i swear i could write better scripts than he could, they’re fucking atrocious. the actors bearly have enough time to fit all the words of a sentence in before jay pops up and says “nooch” and all the guys in the audience fall around laughing and high fiving each other. sometimes i think maybe clerks isn’t so bad, it certainly seems like the exception, but it’s still nothing special. mallrats and chasing amy are both so bad however, i can barely bring myself to think about them in a detailed way, nevermind watch them.

there you are, two directors who don’t deserve a fraction of the attention they get. been meaning to say that for some time. in other news, we saw smog last week who was really very very good indeed. after having only ever seen him across a horribly noisy and crowded room at atp last year, it was great to see him in a virtually empty bar. support came from azita of bride of no no/scissor girls fame. she was a little odd, and her voice got on my nerves a little, but she went down quite well. jazzy piano and singing and weird faces. we also went to see cat power but left after 3 songs cos it was so packed and we couldn’t see or hear anything. apparently after we left she was so drunk she was rolling around on the floor wailing, before awkwardly finishing off the proceedings with some sloppy drumming. that’s entertainment. sadly we missed soilent green last night cos it was expensive and probably not very clean. however! coming up we have 25 suaves and spiritualized. yes!

Haaaughghughhh! I have gone insane!

Posted: August 13th, 2003, by Marceline Smith

Haaaughghughhh! I have gone insane! We just drove from Sarlat in the south of France all the way to Glasgow in an epic, sleepless 24 hour madness insanity thing. I have had precisely four hours sleep since I got home and am now wandering around slowly going mad. The first thing I saw when I left the house was wee Stuart Mogwai riding a bike and I was so confused I thought I was hallucinating and couldn’t say anything. Then I spent half an hour gazing forlornly at the plasters section of Boots with no idea of which ones to buy. I’m not intending on ever doing such a ridiculous journey ever again but if I do I’m not going to consume only Ribena, wine gums and RAC 124, a crazy Red Bull style drink (Peach flavoured!) made by the RAC and packaged in the greatest can design ever (orange, silver, road signs). I’d believe I hallucinated this too if I hadn’t had the foresight to buy an extra can to take home. “Not to be used as a substitute for sleep”!

France was good though, if unbearably hot. I didn’t really do anything at all actually. But that’s good! and relaxing!

I have to go to work tomorrow – helllp meee.

Big cheers to Camera Obscura too for the free ride to France and back, particularly John and Kenny for taking part in our epic journeys across Europe in a small car during a 50+ degree heatwave with no aircon. Buy their records or something.

Goodness me!

Posted: August 5th, 2003, by Marceline Smith

New Pitchfork design brilliantly illustrates why advertising on websites is bad and wrong. I couldn’t keep my eyes in one place long enough to actually read anything on the front page. Also, why the huge screen resolution? After a series of jobs where I would covertly read websites during work hours, I now have the fear of full size web browser windows and particularly resent scrolling to see YET MORE ADVERTS. I really like Pitchfork and I wish they’d stop shooting themselves in the foot like this. I like the brown though, it’s a very underused website colour.

This bad web design/usability thing seems to be a growing problem generally though. I’ve been wandering around the web quite a lot lately and I’m surprised at how few music/culture/etc. websites are well designed. They all seem cluttered, over-designed and difficult to navigate. Maybe I’m just becoming mental over web design now that I spend my days designing horrific websites for magicians and garden pond makers but is it too much to ask for simple, understandable navigation, readable text, a minimum of scrolling and NO FANCY GIMMICKS? God, I feel old. Again.

(Having read the above, try and imagine exactly what my response was to a colleague suggesting I used FRAMES on diskant…)

woo, first blog in ages

Posted: August 2nd, 2003, by Ollie

woo, first blog in ages, and everything is different and new and somewhat intimidating. diskant is looking good though! for those who don’t know/give a shit, i moved a long way away recently, and my life has been filled with many new and wonderful things. i am very slowly coming to terms with being in a country where people really are proud of where they’re from. of course this didn’t come as a total surprise, but having lived in the vast swamp of apathy that is england for so long, it’s taken some getting used to. people still look at me weird when i speak, which i doubt will ever change. i’m going to start lying to people when they ask where i’m from, and tell them i’m norwegian or something, keep things a bit more interesting. still, these small gripes aren’t a big deal really, and i’m having a lot of fun. the fact that there are always places to go and things to do makes me very happy indeed. at home, going out and doing anything required hours of planning and a bunch of money, but now i find myself unable to pick from the array of options that greet me when i wake. i also now understand how kim must have felt when she moved from the us to the uk last year. i wouldn’t call it homesickness, cos theres not a lot i miss, but i do get this eerie feeling like i’m an imposter or something now and again, and i shouldn’t really be here. i guess it may take a long time to really feel settled and totally relaxed, but i think i’m doing ok so far.

anyway, enough of that crap. dave mentioning sleep spurred me to blog, because i too have been indulging of late. a couple of weeks back i got sleep’s holy mountain, which is steeped in ancient mystical worldplay and huge sabbath riffery. like most things, i missed the boat on these guys, cos they were around a while back, but i guess some of them are still around in other bands (mental note: get some high on fire). i also ordered dopesmoker, which i’m hoping is as good as dave says.

i was very pleased with the first two parts of the gringo records singles club. lavishly packaged 7″ singles featuring hirameka/electro group and erase errata/red monkey. after originally subscribing to this roughly 6 years ago, i was very happy when it finally got sorted out.

and dave, good luck with robbie. i saw oasis at knebworth in 1996. i fucking rock. i’m off to finish making tapes for a very nice tape ring i joined, which reminds me; geeks wanted.