Monday, July 10, 2017

twin peaks II

I don't really get it. It's like 70s experimental drama and seems very made up on the spot, though presumably it isn't. It's probably really scripted but maybe the scripts were made up on the spot. 

Oh well I'm into like episode 4. I suppose I'm engaged adequately. So I should stop being annoying about it. 

Monday, July 03, 2017

remember that great velvet underground song about 'monday morning'

Well I am awake at 12:41 am having gone to sleep at, I think, around 7pm. I could be wrong about that it was a hazy time. I kind of feel five hours' sleep approximately is probably alright though. Why such a fucked up sleeping pattern? Well, it being the beginning of the month, I'm going to appear on ABC local radio this morning at 4 to talk about Australian music history again - I'll be discussing the 1960s (I did this a month ago, you can listen here if you want, I don't know how it came out, I haven't reviewed it myself). At 5 I'll be let loose on the world and will probably then go to my workplace and do some research for my 9:15 am radio appearance on RRR where I'll be briefly talking about renaming places. 

On Sunday afternoon I undertook a longish walk from campus through the city to Port Melbourne/Fishermans Bend where I took the punt from Lorimer St to Spotswood 

and then walked aimlessly through Spotswood/Yarraville by which time I had very sore feet (this is probably 3 1/2 - 4 hours walking, not sure) and then got on a couple of buses.  

Hey maybe soon I will get around to describing my domestic situation at the moment which is probably best described as holding pattern but not entirely unpleasant. Nancy is here which is the main thing. She is having a good time too because she really enjoys the company of her co-tenant Huntley. 

I've never seen Nancy have a relationship with another cat before (she's always been very human oriented and I've only seen her react negatively to other cats) so I'm pretty chuffed by this. They seem to have very quickly fallen into a pattern of seeking each other out for hi jinx in the morning, then hanging out sleeping until lunch time, then drifting apart (as far as I can tell) then there's dinner competition (Huntley wants to eat Nancy's food) and time apart then reset the next day. That's how it looks to me anyway, I have to say I don't see them all the time and am at work or otherwise out a lot. Nice though. 

Sunday, June 25, 2017

last Thursday

I don’t remember much fuss being made re winter solstice in previous years but maybe it seems so peripheral I forgot. Today is that day. I am not thrilled by the cyclic nature of the seasons and all I see is the regrettable future summer on the horizon. I really should move to Kergeulen.


All that said, boy/young man sniffing and wiping his nose on his sleeve on the train was a disaster and horrible.

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

good morning

I'm writing to you now from Albion. I did a RRR fill yesterday (12-1, Room with a View) wherein I mentioned how pleased I was to get out of Clifton Hole (true to my form, I imagined ruining four or five Clifton Holians' days - as if) and into this remarkably fine area with the truly awful name. I confessed (this was all off the cuff) to not knowing exactly where the name 'Albion' came from or what it meant but to believing it was some kind of fanciful name for England, which I now know to be true (or at least I spent a little time looking at it on wikipedia and found it was an ancient Greek name for England) (apparently there's a theory that Albania's name comes from a similar source, which is hilarious). Anyway, doesn't matter. 

The lay of the land with Albania: I'm in a shitty townhouse built around thirty years ago, which is shifting on its foundations so the doors don't close properly, it's one of more than twenty, facing the railway line, and I'd have to say that all things considered it's probably the worst place you could live in Albion, but it's adequate at the moment. Yes, it's full of crap (my crap) but Nancy seems happy and all I really need to do is find the nail scissors (and also, cut Nancy's claws, which grow insanely). 

OK. More anon. 

Sunday, May 21, 2017

triffids singles

 I wrote this re: the Triffids singles box set, back in May 2007 - the file was saved on 21 May. I'd say 'enjoy' but why would you. 

The Triffids' first five singles present the group between their early, funny stuff (the six Perth cassette albums and the Dungeontapes)and their brief tenure as one of the most exotic and impressive rock bands of the 1980s. Playing these songs in a random order would be a good idea.

The Triffids recorded their Bad timing and other stories EP at AAV studios soon after they relocated, somewhat depressed, from Perth to a couch and a bed in a room in a bohemian 19th century complex in Brunswick St, Fitzroy, walking distance from the centre of Melbourne. They lived near noted synthesiser pioneer Ash Wednesday who, irritated by the hippies elsewhere in the building, would go out leaving his instruments feeding back on themselves, increasing in volume as the night wore on. Bad timing was made for Mushroom, with whom David McComb had signed a publishing deal, and released on the White label. It features a little-known percussionist, 'Le Tan', whose tenure as a Triffid was brief; Martyn Casey made his debut with this release, and also featured in drag in the video for the title track, for no apparent reason.

The other EP in this collection, Reverie, contains 'Place in the sun', a song that would later be rerecorded for the group's first vinyl (but 9th!) album Treeless Plain because David McComb liked it so much. At the time the Triffids recorded Reverie, David's most constant collaborator, Alsy McDonald, had left the band to study dentistry. He was replaced by Mark Peters; Alsy came back in time to be photographed for the sleeve. Margaret Gillard and Will Akers were also briefly members for Reverie. C. C. Mitchell told the readers of Roadrunner that The Triffids were 'what music should be - clever, earnest, non-professional, innovative, original and enjoyable.'

'Spanish blue' and 'Twisted brain' are songs that show two sides to the group. 'Spanish blue' has some of that same quirky spark as first single 'Farmers never visit nightclubs', funny lines melded with a glittering ennui that David McComb would later take further with 'Too hot to move'. 'Twisted brain' is, similarly, simultaneously funny and wry while retaining a clear thread of angst that's as teeny as the early Scientists and as vivid as the early Laughing Clowns. A month before this record was recorded Toby Cluechaz informed Roadrunner readers that 'I have to become a miser with words to talk about their purity… the pop music they play is not only infectious it's unusually smart… lyrics as empathic as they are insidious, harmonies and other idiosyncrasies, humour… a skin of dark shadow.' It was released firstly as an EMI custom pressing, paid for by the band, and then on the White Label.

'Beautiful waste' is The Triffids finding their lush pop feet, a kind of carnival version of 'Being driven'. Its birth appears to have been induced by the success of the Treeless Plain album, but it was a flamboyant and colourful progression from that album. Its brash and garish video was the last time The Triffids would (a la the 'Spanish blue' or 'Bad timing' videos) so radically poke fun at themselves, the world and the idea of making a video all at once. The b-side to 'Beautiful waste', 'Property is condemned', was (like 'Twisted brain', 'Left to rot', and for that matter 'Dead wind') a moodier, more dank proposition, and plainly too good to be a b-side, if you think that denotes diminished status. It reappeared on the group's Raining Pleasure mini album.


'Farmers never visit nightclubs'/'Stand up' was The Triffids' first vinyl release. David McComb liked 'Farmers' better because it was 'zany'; whereas Talking Heads could do a song 'about buildings on fire', he said, his group 'did a song about farmers not being socially accepted at nightclubs'. As well as being zany, it was quirky, whimsical and even camp. David later told Toby Creswell that The Triffids were 'sixty years old when we were nineteen.' But the band's first single can speak for itself.