Monday, February 27, 2006

Pistol shots ring out in the barroom night

Another he not busy being born is busy dying blog near-exclusive... here is a copy of the Sex Pistols' answer to being nominated for the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame. There are still some things that money can't buy it seems....and thank god for it too.


Well, sometimes I might get drunk

Binge drinking..bad for your health

I got really drunk this weekend.

First of all I went out to Chingford in Essex to see a friend and did what is termed by the media as 'binge drinking'. Interesting fact: Chingford is where the Kray Brothers are burried.
Then on Saturday I went to Living in Brixton to my friend Jamie's birthday party and did another spot of 'binge drinking'. Sunday I woke up and had the worst hanghover ever. FACT. Isn't it funny that everytime one gets a hangover, it seems to be the worst thing ever and you say to yourself that you won't drink ever again but you always do...
Anyway, hope all my regular readers had a good weekend (yes all 78,256 of you!). If you're bored at work then check out my super-exciting reviews. First of all here's a piece on Johnny Cash and the Walk the Line film. Then there's my review of the Magic Numbers gig at Brixton and finally my review of Maximo Park and the Arctic Monkeys live and in person also at Brixton Academy.

Friday, February 24, 2006

I saw the morning papers but I could not bear to see

The Daily Express is possibly the worst English newspaper ever. As part of my job I have to read it everyday. It is so god damn depressing. On the banner it even says such obvious rubbish as "the world's greatest newspaper". Quite how they've come to this conclusion is another issue.
In today's paper there is a piece entitiled 'Is Britain is the New Germany?'. In this monumental work, the journalist (Leo McKinsstry) comes up with a load of crap. Apparently "teutonic-style officialdom threatens our national identity" and "even our traditional sense of humour is being destroyed". The article hinges on the fact that political correctness is destroying the british way of life and that we are now share the same national characteristics as Germany.
It is such a brilliant piece for the Express. It has Germany (still some hatred as result of the war), political correctness and Europe all rolled into one devastating piece. Fortunately only a few privileged (irony) readers will be able to have the pleasure of reading this. It's good to know that a newspaper which passes this piece off as serious journalism is one of the smallest papers in the land. Thank christ for that. I think the Daily Express is awful and urge you to boycott it until it goes bust. I know that the massive readership of my blog can control the destiny of one of Britain's most hideous newspapers (joke).

Wednesday, February 22, 2006

I know all about poison, I know all about fiery darts

Darts ... dangerous
Darts is a great game. Every year I go to the world championships at the Lakeside in Surrey. But the sport of darts has two problems:
  • A high amount of injuries
  • There are two competing competitions

Essentially a bunch of people got greedy in the 1990s and set up a rival league to the original competition, the BDO. Now there are two world championships. This is stupid. Think about it for a minute. Its as if Chelsea and Liverpool decided to start their own premier league and Man Utd and Arsenal stayed in the other. No one would really know who is the best.

They really need to sort this out, because I am tired of arguing about the quality of the PDF vs the BDO. It's stupid. It's not like darts can afford to split its fan base in two. Unite and the sport may have a chance of survival in a world full of DVDs, Playstations and Britney Spears. Stay split and the children will grow up fucked in the head because of the trauma and the sport will be no nearer to competing in the Olympics.

Best of order please...Game On!

What Can I do for you?

Tuesday, February 21, 2006

I left Rome and landed in Brussels

Last night I went to the theatre to see a play called the Schuman Plan. As you can tell by the title it's a 'political play' on the creation of the European Union. Now, I'm as European as you can get in Britain (French mother/English father) and there are a good few of us (a friend of mine who like me lived abroad throughout his childhood refers to us as being "Eurobrats") and we all know that such a play is likely to be watched by an essentially anti-European UK public, but I didn't think that it would make me hate the rest of the crowd.
The play started out as a fairly balanced argument on teh pros and cons of European integration and went back and forth throughout history. Then after the break it became a Daily Express reader's wet dream as the 'poignant' ( note that the quotes indicate irony) drama unfolds when a fisherman takes his own life after too much interference from the EU.
Now I know that I am not a fisherman, but 20,000 odd fisherman vs economic benefits for the whole exonomy and the rest of the UK population. Not much of an argument there (but then, it wasn't really addressed). What was funny was the fact that the crowd were laughing a bit too much at jokes which could be construed as xenophobic and were also prone to shouting out little grunts of approval, "hear, hear" said an old bloke as one of the characters on stage spoke of Britain leaving the EU. He also shouted "Bravo" at the end in a comedy upper class voice, along with his fat wife. The public laped it up like it was a junkie addicted to lies and fabrications.

Monday, February 20, 2006

It rolls and flows all down her breast

I can't believe I missed this news from last week. Some Australian mentalist has decided that she has to paint with her boobs. Apparently she signs every picture with her nipple. Unfortunately the article has no examples of her pictures, or indeed any photos of her creating.
In other news, I saw the most famous band in the world at the moment, the Arctic Monkeys on Friday. It was amazing. But what was even more amazing are the amount of celebrities who were in attendance. I saw Peaches Geldof, looking like a spoilt little lady at the bar, and Edith Bowman on her way out who was as lovely as she seems on TV and the radio, being very nice to us and telling us how great the gig was.
Last week was a bit of a celebrity fest for me as I also saw Liz Hurley going into some hotel. There were loads of Paparazzi who were taking a break from being professional scumbags by queing up in an orderly fashion to take many pictures of the lovely Liz. Wow! I hear you think, what a cool, connected guy. I wish I visited the hair salon because I would no doubt be the coolest person there.
Also, if you're bored at work and a fan of Wilco and music DVDs, please read my review of Wilco's music DVD, 'I Am Trying to Break Your Heart' at Music for Grown Ups.

Friday, February 17, 2006

Don't waste your words, they're just lies

Just in case George W Bush or Tony Blair pops in to have a look at my blog...
Doublethink is "the power of holding two contradictory beliefs in one's mind simultaneously, and accepting both of them. ... To tell deliberate lies while genuinely believing in them, to forget any fact that has become inconvenient, and then, when it becomes necessary again, to draw it back from oblivion for just so long as it is needed, to deny the existence of objective reality and all the while to take account of the reality which one denies—all this is indispensably necessary. Even in using the word doublethink it is necessary to exercise doublethink. For by using the word one admits that one is tampering with reality; by a fresh act of doublethink one erases this knowledge; and so on indefinitely, with the lie always one leap ahead of the truth."
George Orwell, 1984, pp35, 176-177.
The war in Iraq is no longer about WMDs but about bringing Freedom and deomcracy to the Middle East. Hmmmmm....I wonder how Tony Blair sleeps at night?
Seems like Orwell was right in predicting a 1984esque world. We have lies becoming truths which then become lies and ID cards and people watching us through CCTV and records of our Oyster cards (an electronic ticket for the tube in London). What on earth is going on, we seem to be sleepwalking into a totalitarian state and no one bats an eyelid because footballer's wives is on the TV, or because all people really want is a new car/luxury item/house.

Thursday, February 16, 2006

There's just as much danger in a football game

Where has football gone wrong?

Last night I watched Bolton Wanderers vs Olympique Marseille in the UEFA cup. It was dire, there was no-one there and the match was as defensive as it seems. Channel Five were trying to make it into some big event, when it so blatently wasn't. Even Bolton's manager seemed embarrassed with Five's coverage.
When I was a kid UEFA cup football was amazing. The second best thing after the champions cup. But what has happened recently with the creation of the Champions League is that the UEFA cup means nothing, no matter how much they tart it up with group stages, etc.. It will now always play second fiddle to the Champions League.
But I remember the thrill of seeing minnows Brondby beat Real Madrid! And in person seeing Tony Yeboah score a hat-trick against Monaco when I lived in France. Nowadays, i'm not sure i'd consider paying to go and see the UEFA cup. Last night there was some blatant bad referring, some dodgy dives and some primadonnas thinking that they were the bees knees. Even in my lifetime, this has become more and more recurrent.
Just got me thinking that's all. There's an older guy I know who keeps saying that money have destroyed the two things he likes in life: football and music. He is probably right. Even i'm begining to think it. Perhaps i'm just getting old?

Wednesday, February 15, 2006

He wants to turn me in to the F.B.I

24 was ace at the weekend, unfortunately Jack has lost his mullet. With episode 100 (already?) coming up on Sunday on Sky One, yesterday's G2 section of my favourite newspaper, the Guardian, ran an interview with the star of 24, Jack Bauer...I mean Kiefer Sutherland. In it he reveals some funny moments in his life and discusses 24 and the new 24 computer game for PS2. One of the funny stories is when he had a real-life Jack Bauer moment:

"About five years ago I was watching this elderly lady walking down the street and two boys came up behind her and pushed her and taken her purse. I pulled my car over and tackled one of the boys, and before I knew it, the old lady was hitting me on my back with the cane, and I turned around to see a bunch of kids just making a student film and the side of the street. I never felt so stupid in all my life, I was very embarrassed and they were all laughing"
Another point that the interviewer makes is that they should have a box where they put $5 in everytime they break the Geneva convention in the episode. No doubt it would be overflowing. But this does raise another issue in my mind. Torture is bad, m'okay, it's obvious that it is. I am disgusted of tales of torture coming from Afghanistan, Iraq or Guantanamo Bay, yet at the same time i'm urging Jack Bauer to connect electric wires to some terrorist's testicles in order for CTU to salvage the day and keep the bad guys from winning. I know it's only TV but there must be some deranged rightwing americans who think that all of America's problems would be solved if the bureaucracy didn't get in the way of agents like Jack Bauer who just want to serve their country.
In other related news, Liberal Woman has linked me to her site. You may remember that I wrote about her website on my tour of blogs. I've returned the favour (see the blog links to the right) and urge you to visit her site. She discusses politics and society and all the important topics in life. No doubt she would abhore any replication of Jack Bauer's tactics in the War on Terror. She has a nice post about a US soldier who has written a poetry book inspired from his time in Iraq. She seems to hate Bush with a passion. As a European, it's sometimes hard to remember that not all Americans are right wing neo-con pricks. Blogs like this prove that George W Bush (the W stands for wanker) does not speak for all Americans.
Related posts from my archive: 24 and tour of blogs

Tuesday, February 14, 2006

There's guns across the river aimin' at ya

Here is a world wide exclusive photo of Dick Cheney just before he was about to shoot his friend and hunting companion, Harry Whittington. Forget Sky blog brings you news exclusives 24/7, 365 days a year.

Monday, February 13, 2006

You sound like a hillbilly, we want folk singer here

This is why Modster Paul Weller deserves a lifetime achievement award at the Brits. When asked if it was true that he would be performing with James Blunt on the big night:

I'd rather eat my own shit than do a duet with James Blunt

In other news, please feel free to read my review of Greil Marcus' book, 'Like a Rolling Stone' on the tasteful website, Music for Grown Ups.

Talkin' New York

Friday, February 10, 2006

Do I understand your question, man, is it hopeless and forlorn?

I've already discussed the Liberal Democrat leadership campaign in my blog, but it is now time for more thoughts on the contest. Last night I watched Question Time on BBC 1. This is a programme which normally brings in politicians and big dicks from the media as well as the odd celebrity intellectual thrown in (Will Self, Ian Hislop, Germaine Greer, for example) and they answer questions from the crowd.
In a bid to sex up the programme they have allowed people to text in their views which scroll on the page if you have digital TV and also made amendements to the theme tune. Adding sexiness to an already sexy piano based theme was always going to be hard (I'm joking, the music is rubbish).
Anyways, last night they had the three remaining candidates for the Lib Dem leadership on a special. The three candidates stood forlorn in front of party members and neutrals and discussed a variety of topics. Voting for the liberal democrats has always been a wasted vote to some degree, they are a third party in a two way political system and as such are always dismissed as no-runners and a waste of space. BUT....if they manage to get the non-voters on side, then they would win easily.
The mass of people who don't bother to exercise their political right is quite simply disgusting. In a bid to make this happen, I am using my Blog as a translating tool for the non-voting masses. I will use a simple anology to describe the three candidates so everyone can decide on who they want to lead the third party.
Ming Campbell - He is to the Lib Dems what Madonna is to pop music. Old. It's not to say that she doesn't get the odd number one moment but you do end up thinking that it's your mother strutting on the television trying to be sexy.
Chris Huhne - He is the Kelly Clarkson of the Lib Dems: new, recently on the scene. She won American Idol and as such you are never sure how long she has left in the limelight. Still sexy though but in no way is she an icon.
Simon Hughes - He is the Kylie of the Lib Dems. Sexy, courageous and also a gay icon. Like Kylie, he has been around for a long time but still seems young. Like Kylie he can win over hearts and minds. Vote Kylie.
So there you have it. You can have Madonna, Kelly Clarkson or Kylie to lead the Lib Dem attack against both Labour and the Tory Party. God knows we need to get people interested in politics again, Simon 'Kylie' Hughes is the man to do it.

Shelter from the storm

Thursday, February 09, 2006

Twenty-four hours a day you can feel it and you can hear it

My friend Will has an exciting Blog that you must discover. Anyways a few days ago he wrote about Jack Bauer and 24. If you don't know 24, its like Die Hard, only on crack cocaine.
It truly is the king of action on TV. Of course, it does not reach the dramatic heights of the Sopranos (the best television programme ever, full stop) but, as far as pure, ridiculous, unadulterated action goes, 24 is the key.
Anyways, I saw the 'prequal' on Sky One a few days ago as well. This mini-ten minute episode which was originally on the season 4 dvd is supposed to be what happened inbetween the two seasons. It had no story, Chloe was in there (and alarmingly I think they had tried to sex her up) and she was meeting Jack in secret, as he's now a 'dead man'. It was in Chicago, because of the Chicago Tribune newspaper vending machines (that was indeed a nice touch) . The best thing about this was that Jack Bauer had a mullet!!!! He looked like an idiot.
Bring on the new series which starts on Sunday on Sky One with two episodes. Let's hope he still has that mullet.

Tuesday, February 07, 2006

We're not pimps on the make, politicians on the take

It seems that the British desire to turn everything and anything into a musical knows no bounds. The life of Maggie Thatcher is to be turned into a musical. Showing at Warwick Theatre before a UK-wide tour (of every Tory market town, no doubt), it celebrates the life and times of the 'Iron Lady'. It reminds me of the Brass Eye sketch where they make people believe that they are doing Peter Sutcliffe the Musical.
But we do have far too many musicals based on crap premises, like 'Daddy Cool' (the musical based on the songs of Boney M) , as well as 'We will Rock You' (the muscial based on the songs of Queen). The Queen one seems particularly ridiculous as this synopsis from Wikipaedia shows:

The story is set in the unspecified, vaguely Orwellian future. Earth's name has been changed to Planet Mall. As the name would suggest, mainstream commercial conformity reigns. Everywhere on the planet, people watch the same movies, listen to computer-generated music, wear the same clothes and hold the same thoughts and opinions. Musical instruments and composers are forbidden, and rock music is all but unknown. Representative government has been eliminated. All are controlled by the Worldwide mega-corporation Globalsoft, which is headed by the "Killer Queen" and the commander of her secret police, the evil Khashoggi. Those who dare to stand against Globalsoft's enforced conformity are kidnapped and "brain stormed" into submission. However, a small group of "Bohemians" struggles to restore the free exchange of thought, fashion, and (most of all) live music. As with the classic quest stories that it spoofs, the musical includes both a Messiah figure, the social outcast Galileo Figaro, and a McGuffin that will restore freedom, the lost guitar of Queen guitarist, Brian May.

Together with his love interest, another dissident calling herself Scaramouche, Galileo joins with the Bohemians to find the guitar, and overthrow Globalsoft. However, when the Bohemians are captured and brain stormed, Galileo and Scaramouche are forced to flee for their lives. Eventually they meet Pop, an older, hippie-esque Bohemian who yearns for the "old days" when people were free and Rock & Roll was king...or Queen as the case may be. Again fulfilling the classic role of "Guide" for the two, Pop shows them a fragment of the Queen video, "Bohemian Rhapsody," further inspiring them. Impressed by the “heavenly music,” Galileo and Scaramouche eventually decide to search for the guitar at Wembley Stadium, the location of two legendary concerts by Queen. Though the Stadium is a ruin, they find the guitar hidden in a wall. With guitar in hand, and Pop serving as "roadie" for the two saviors, they perform a rousing rendition of the title song, "We Will Rock You," and conclude with a marvelous arrangement of "Bohemian Rhapsody."

It's especially interesting to note the reinvention of Queen as an alternative, non-corporate band seeing as they were as pop as you can get and were quite happy to accept money to play a concert in apartheid South Africa in 1984, when very few bands did as a protest against the regime.
Anyways, I digress. Musicals such as these are generally rubbish. That's what I wanted to say.
Check out a new thing I wrote on rockbeatstone about Lyrics in modern rock music (so far removed from some of Queen's)

Monday, February 06, 2006

But I've been sniffin' too many eggs

Ruth Kelly, the education secretary has been egged. Not once but twice. She was turning up at a trial where she was supposed to give evidence against a man who had previously egged her. She was then egged again, in a counter-strike so impressive that even Iraqui insurgents would have had problems dodging.
The original egg throwing incident is alledged to have been another one of the brilliant plans made by Fathers4Justice. They recently disbanded after plans to capture and take hostage Tony Blair's child were leaked. The new egging incident is reportedly the work of RealFathers4Justice a separitst group who have obviously modelled their name on the 'Real IRA'.
But another news report suggests that Mrs Kelly has more to do with the IRA than she may care to think about. Her grandfather was interned as an IRA Quartermaster in the 1920s on the SS Argenta, a prison barge, which much like Guantanamo today is alleged to have been home to horrific acts of torture. She may want to think that one through as the Labour party seem not too keen in raising Guantanamo with the UK's special Friend, the United States of America.
But Ruth Kelly is a member of Opus Dei so she may well be happy having such conflicting views. I mean she is in a supposedly Labour government yet endorses anti-contraception, anti-abortion, and anti-stem cell research through her faith.
In other news...
Read my review of Maximo Park's excellent album A Certain Trigger

Friday, February 03, 2006

You can laugh at salvation, you can play Olympic games

Rubbish mascots, rubbish games

It's that time again....Winter Olympic fever is about to hit the UK. Well not really. Nobody gives a toss. The Winter Olympics are quite possibly one of the most tedious and annoying worldwide 'events' ever (and that includes the Oscars ceremony). This year the event is taking place in Turin (or Torino), Italy. I can't wait for the excitement to begin as the UK gets no medals because we don't have any proper ski slopes (except for those crappy artificial slopes), or indeed any proper ice rinks. The only thing we once were good at was when a policeman and a slapper got together and won the figure skating. But let's be honest, it's just glorified ballroom dancing. In fact its worse than ballroom dancing.
Here are some brilliant sports that will be all over our TV screens (even the BBC attempt to get us interested when we are blatantly not - they should concentrate on sports that the British public care about...leave the winter olympics to Eurosport):
  • Biathlon - a bizarre twist on skiing where people go cross country and then fire a shotgun at a target. Why?
  • Figure skating - on a more serious note, is it still a sport when a judge has to be subjective?
  • Curling - Idiotic sport where people brush in front of oversized hockey pucks. A bit like the French game of boules, only someone decided that it would be better on ice.
  • Snowboard - a bit like skiing but only tossers participate.
  • Freestyle skiing - the figure skating of the ski world - again pointless peole doing tricks. Shouldn't these guys be smoking doobies and playing in the X games?
I hope you will join me in wishing a quick death to the Winter Olympics, so the largest sporting event of 2006 can take its place in the hearts and minds of the TV schedulers - the World Cup. Now there's a proper international event. Can't wait - bring on the summer.

Wednesday, February 01, 2006

Jotting down notes

A quick blog update. It's bloody hard getting everthing to work properly. Now i'm no IT expert but I can use a computer fairly competantly I feel, but this blog was indeed fiddly to set up. Links not working, fonts not right,etc.. The main problem I had was the fact that from home I can't update it properly because I have a apple iMac and safari doesn't accept some rich HTML thing which i don't understand. Short answer - I can't update properly from home. But I thought I would use today's post as a tour of my blog.

On the right hand side you have the links bar which as links to my articles at rockbeatstone. Below that are links to music sites that I think are cool and visit alot. The footie ones, needless to say they are all southampton links. Below that are links to blogs, Will is a mate, the other two are from random sources but I find them funny, so check em out if you have time. Next are my previous posts (both most recent and archives by month). Now below them are some icons. The retrostats permits me to see how many have been on my blog (320 hits from a total of 113 different people). Its quite cool because it tells me a load of stuff that I could use if I were remotely interested, but I think it's just for people who want to make money.
My post titles are all quotes from Bob Dylan songs. They are supposed to relate to the message. I'm not sure whether this says anything about Dylan, I think I wanted to see how long I could keep on keepin' on doing this (see I just did it there). It does prove that Dylan is a master songwriter and that his lyrics can be used when discussing any topic or feeling any emotion. Or I could be talking out of my backside again. The song that I have quoted from is linked at the end of the post in small so you can either play a game and try and remember which song or find out more. So in this case it's from Quinn the Eskimo which was a successful cover for Manfred Mann and the tune has been adopted by numerous football fans for their chants.
So there you have it. I hope that this explains some bits for the non-IT and for those who do not know me or the premise of my blog.

Check me out, if you dare