Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Probably not coming to an album chart near you

Spent most of snowy Tuesday mixing the HIO recording session at Ken's house from last Sunday night.

Some stats. Why? Because no one asked...

The players
Michael Briggs - misc. electronics
Marcus Brunt - disembodied voice
Michael Chamy - misc. electronics
Patrick Crossland - trombone
Matt Hickey - electric gopichand
Terry Horn - misc. electronics
Ken Shimamoto - guitar, disembodied voice

Mix (33:48)
Remix A (30:00)
Remix B (5:00)

Saturday, December 26, 2009

Boxing Day postage

Thanks, Ken...

Some tunes featuring the legendary session guitarist, Chris Spedding:

Thursday, December 24, 2009

White winter

Carey and I had Christmas lunch at my mother's house with her (obviously), my aunt, uncle, and cousin. Driving back home was considerably worse than when we arrived, as it continually snowed and rained ice pellets throughout the duration of our stay, driven by a strong northerly wind. Without steady traffic and road crews the wintry mix accumulated on the rural roads, making the trip home a slow, arduous process. Snow drifts up to six inches deep greeted us at our front and back doors, with little mounds of the seasonal powder accenting the windows.

Deciding to brave the weather and roads to celebrate Christmas with her uncles from New Zealand, Carey went to Dallas and is spending the night at her mother's. We'll have our present gorging tomorrow evening.

When I went to feed Roman dinner around five I found a huge tree that had fallen into his pen which snapped into two sections around twelve to fifteen feet each. Forty minutes with a blunt axe reduced the oak into manageable pieces. It was still snowing heavily, and heading back towards the house I noticed that my footpath in the two to three inch deep snow was already filled in with a fresh batch.

Now? Laundry and watching Gavin & Stacy Christmas Special.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Ink to paper and words to web

HIO in this week's Fort Worth Weekly.

Itinerary for today

1. Nanny the silent phone system at the office.

2. Have company Christmas lunch.

3. With Carey, find materials we need to goat-proof our property. Roman is not doing well without his friend.

4. Finish wrapping gifts.

It's a man's life in the...

Monday, December 21, 2009

Another loss

Our 25 year old horse, Remus, passed away yesterday evening. We acquired him several years ago as a rescue with ongoing health issues. We knew our time with Remus was limited, which doesn't make his passing any easier to accept at this moment. We will miss our gentle giant.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Weekend ramble and other various(ish) topics

Played with HIO (which consisted of Sarah Alexander, Michael Briggs, Michael Chamy, Matt Hembree, Terry Horn, and Ken Shimamoto on this particular day) at 1919 Hemphill yesterday evening (Footnote: I remember attempting to locate the venue many a year ago without success, but since then a sign has been placed on the building, helping this anti-Magellan find the building without incident). Always fun getting to play with this collective, and even more so when the Michaels and Sarah are on board.

After the gig, got home in time to catch an encore of the U.S. premiere of Doctor Who's "The Waters of Mars", which was fantastic. Next Saturday is the beginning of the end for the Tenth Doctor and the return of the Master. Counting the days... I know. Pathetic.

The good times continue next Sunday with the commencement of another HIO recording session at Ken's. Hooray!

Friday, December 18, 2009

Oh, oh, etc.

Woke up today with this stuck in the noggin:

Thursday, December 17, 2009


Added an "i" at the beginning of your name, eh? How clever. Idiot.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009


I was watching/in a documentary about David Bowie. He had a cruise liner converted into a yacht with the vent stack painted yellow utilizing a rare earth element only found in Greece. Bowie's bedroom was covered in wallpaper with graphics in the style of Georgian/Victorian cartoon drawings of him on a bicycle wearing a 1920s style pinstripe suite with his fingers in the nose of a brown bear standing over him. When Bowie was interviewed, he took on the appearance of the woman from the Rosetta Stone® adverts, wearing a low cut red dressing gown and talking very boastfully how horribly she treats her employees.

Monday, December 14, 2009

Today's soundtrack

For the commute today it's Hawkwind's sophomore effort, In Search of Space (1971).

Friday, December 11, 2009

Annoying immortality

If I have to continue hearing Al Kooper, The Guess Who, etc. ...

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

The end of match summary

1. Had dinner at King Tut, a place which I haven't set foot into for about fifteen years. Ordered falafel and freekeh soup, with Turkish coffee to finish the meal. Very good. Must make time to go there again. Soon.

2. Met with Ken and Terry at the Bull and Bush around 6:30. Chin-wagged with the journalist from the Fort Worth Weekly about all things HIO. Well, by "all things" I meant "virtually nothing". Ha!

3. After the interview Terry was feeling a bit peckish. Went down the road to J&J's Oyster Bar. Failed to remember before leaving the pub that my tab was still open. Hightailed it back to set things right. Did I mention that I left the old grey matter at home yesterday?

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

The half-time analysis

1. Woke up late this morning, and upon leaving the house realized that I left my brain in bed.

2. Walked into a The War of the Roses-esque scene at work.

3. A rat getting ready to check out appeared on the middle of the floor, so I grabbed the dustpan and broom to transport it to the bin outside. Poor little buggar...

4. Waiting in town to meet with Ken and Terry at the Bull and Bush later this evening to do an interview with a journalist from the Fort Worth Weekly, which should be in next week's edition.

And, now, back to the match:

Sunday, December 6, 2009


Mr. Horn has posted video from last Friday's performance at the Phoenix Project on Virb. An unrated director's cut could possibly be available sometime in the future...

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Survivor lives...

Through Mr. Cocker? Greatness indeed!

How easily I get sidetracked...

Live, Barcelona (2007)


Started the day with coffee, toast, yogurt, and some Pulp (A Different Class and This Is Hardcore) on the stereo. A short trip on Facebook followed and setting up gear to record. Now... well, typing this, obviously. Also browsing some VST plugins.

That's about it for now.

Thursday, December 3, 2009


Dig Me Out (1997)

The Hot Rock (1998)

Monday, November 30, 2009

No distance left to run... for a while

Had a blowout on I-30 on the way home from work. Luckily the tires were still under warranty with Discount Tire, so basically it was only out-of-pocket for the tow. While waiting, decided to hoof it over to Wan Fu for dinner - only to find out after arriving their building was up for lease. Ended up having a bowl of chicken and rice soup at The Blackeyed Pea.

Happier news (for me, at least): received a message on Facebook that Blur will have a feature-length film out in January. Hooray!

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Your show of shows

Well, as least pertaining to yesterday. Played at the Phoenix Project in Dallas, which took six passes - the last two with Terry in the lead - on South Haskell to finally locate an indiscreet, unlit building with a tiny piece of paper adhered to a window revealing the address. The entrance and parking was accessible via small alley, with a torch and barrel fire to illuminate the path. Outdoor decor consists of chain link fencing, security bars, aluminum paneling, and barbed wire. The only thing missing was a thunderdome.

About thirty minutes before the show a group of 20-30 bicycle wielding tourists (lead by someone with a bullhorn) stopped by to check out the joint, then promptly left.

HIO on this particular night was Ken Shimamoto, Terry Horn, Marcus Brunt, Michael Chamy, and I. Sarah Alexander was present (to jam with Jacob Wick), but unfortunately due to a misunderstanding regarding the lineup she did not join us on stage. Hopefully next time... Felt like a solid set, and the spartan vibe of the venue seemed to fit with our sculptures of noise.

Next time? As of now it looks like we'll get to utilize the Rahr Brewery for recording in January. Sounds like my idea of heaven!

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Dream to consume

Last night's dream was that I was living back on Whitman Avenue and I just bought a Fiat 500C Abarth. Unlike the real model it had a 2.55ci one cylinder engine which produced five horsepower and was equipped with eight inch tires... which were flat but didn't stop me driving it to Arlington.

Now I want a Fiat 500C Abarth. Sigh.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Past weekend lives

Friday evening: Met with Ken and Terry for a chinwag and a couple of pints. Afterward it was back to Ken and Kat's for some grub they generously offered to prepare and serve. Good way to end the day.

Saturday: Woke up to the sound of our resident prankster, Luna, knocking down the bedroom curtains. Because I'm "DIY challenged" it took three hours to mend the dry wall (eventually with duct tape. Yes, I'm that bad... ), remount the curtain rod hook, and remove glued debris from my fingers. Recording went as well, as the computer crashed and thus spent most of the day fixing it. Also worked on sorting out my gear for the HIO show this Friday at the Phoenix Project.

Sunday: Finally recorded a new track in the wee hours and added vocals later in the day. A yang to Saturday's ying.

Friday, November 20, 2009


Haven't thought about this song in years. Funny what one wakes up thinking about...

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

The (not so) great vent


This day is about over, right?

Monday, November 16, 2009

The great equalizer

Edward Woodward, best known stateside as the star of The Equalizer, died today at the age of 79. He also played the role of Police Sergeant Neil Howie in the original The Wicker Man, and Harry Morant in one of my favorite movies of all time, Breaker Morant.

So long.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Check, please

From BBC News:

Police in Russia have arrested three homeless men suspected of killing a man, eating part of the body and selling other parts to a kebab shop.

Not the anecdote I would like to leave on.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

This Is Not A Love Song

Keith Levene's last stand with Public Image Limited. The video is for the single version, which was re-recorded with a new set of musicians for the This Is What You Want... This Is What You Get LP (1984).

B/W "This Is Not A Love Song"

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Going home...

This afternoon I saw a fat guy wearing an orange shirt standing on the Bryant Irving bridge over the westbound side of I-30 waving an American flag in his left hand. Couldn't tell what he was exactly doing with his right, though (minds out of the gutter, please), so I proceeded to move out of the lane that was directly beneath him. Whatever floats your boat, eh?

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

A fiery brew

A bottle of beer that survived the Hinderburg crash (one of six to do so) is up for auction. From the Beeb.

Monday, November 9, 2009

Another round

What's new? Nothing. Still binging on Kate Bush's songs, from The Kick Inside to Aerial. Some people hit the bottle but I hit the play button.

I know. That was terrible.

The Sensual World (1989)

The Red Shoes (1993)

Aerial (2005)

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Aural cravings

Tonight it's been Kate Bush. She's another musician I recall catching at an early age on MTV during the time Hounds of Love was making waves stateside. Some of her tunes were a bit too melodramatic for my taste, but regardless she is an immense talent.

The Kick Inside (1978)

Never for Ever (1980)

The Dreaming (1982)

Hounds of Love (1985)

Hounds of Love

Friday, November 6, 2009

Charged G.B.H.

Yes, they are a punk-by-the-numbers group with the mandatory leather and spikes to boot, but I do have a soft spot for them.

Fun but obscure fact: RGB worked on a cover version of this song back when it was just me, Ray Kadleck, and Bryan Michler.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

HIO Summit 2009

It was a productive evening yesterday with Ken and Terry at the Bull and Bush. Terry manage to capture nearly ten minutes of a walking squawk box on his Blackberry recorder, which will hopefully become new tuneage. By far the easiest recording session I've ever taken part in.

Also partook in a "brainstorming" session of possible cover songs by groups who have at least one member that was/is follically challenged (REM and Midnight Oil were solid front runners). Don't ask.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Purple Rin

Albums for the commute today: Machine Head and My DNA.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

On a lighter note

...but still in regards to the affliction known as inarticulacy (well, to be more accurate, writer's block or "Mister Thickie-itis"), I am struggling to write lyrics for "Horse". Lyrics have always been a weak point for me - I can usually scribble out at least one line I'm happy with. Any additional words needed for a tune for the most part feels like filler to me, just to get the damn thing finished. Melody line for the vocals? That's even worse. Listen to some TFA (or, if you were one of the three people who even heard Rio Grande Babies) and you will understand that I never carried a tune, only a mono-toned raised voice. Someone else to sing for this track is becoming more ideal by the second...

This tune may be a bit ambitious for me. It may not be that good for the amount of time spent on it (I may be getting a bit "Boston" regarding this song. Is there a fate worse than turning into Tom Scholz?). It's also somewhat late and I feel a bit fried. Buenos noche.

Saturday, October 31, 2009

Brooklyn boy did good


On the sixteenth of October an extraordinary man went into the long night. Richard Penna was one of humanity's finest. He will stay in my heart for the rest of my life.

Addendum: For a couple of weeks I've struggled to write something that wouldn't come across as a third grade book report, emotionless and just listing the facts. I also wanted to convey what made him such a wonderful person, but I can't seem to sufficiently describe my memories and thoughts of him. There is also guilt that I failed to stay in contact with him for nearly a decade and sorry that I did not establish a stronger relation with someone who left such a huge and indelible print in my life, whether he knew it or not. In the end, three sentences are not enough for a man who genuinely cared for people and would help anyone in need without question. Richard's selflessness was not a put-on. He was the real deal.

Thursday, October 29, 2009


Took the day off so Carey and I could celebrate our fifth anniversary early (it's actually on Halloween but Carey is scheduled to work that day). Went to see Cirque du Freak: The Vampire's Assistant (I like John C. Reilly but the movie was not that good, so sayeth me) and had a meal at Pastafina. Good day.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009


One can enjoy a little mustard with their ice cream... whatever that means.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009


Python week on IFC, and I've been reunited with one of Idle's gems from the Contractual Obligation Album. Almost a lethal joke.

Monday, October 19, 2009

Sweet and sour

HIO (Matt, Terry, Ken, and I. Marcus had a family emergency, which hopefully everything turned out well) met at Ken's house on Saturday for dinner and recording. Terry and I brought recording gear (mine made the Rolling Stones Mobile Studio look state-of-the-art in regards to transportability), which will start mixing the tracks in earnest this evening. Fun night, and, as always, a blast getting to play and hang out with those blokes (and Kat, too!).

Sad news on Sunday tempered the sublime Saturday when my mother called to let me know that someone close to our family died from complications brought on by gastric bypass surgery. We'll have a chance to say our final goodbyes to him this Tuesday.

Friday, October 16, 2009

Southern comfort

A justice of the peace in Tangipahoa Parish, Louisiana refused to grant an interracial couple a marriage license. According to the judge, Keith "my father is also my brother" Bardwell:

I have piles and piles of black friends. They come to my home, I marry them, they use my bathroom. I treat them just like everyone else.

Guess his statement proves that this story is just another case of media spin, eh?

Monday, October 12, 2009

The python and the hitchhiker

Terry Jones reminiscences about the late Douglas Adams. From Times Online.

Wet wet wet

This past weekend I've ruined four pairs of socks cleaning the horse pens due to holes in both(!) boots (there's nothing quite like the sensation of sloshing around with feet swimming in cold water and mud, which is something to look forward to again today). With rain in the forecast for tonight through Wednesday the hopes of the property drying out in time allowing access to the shed for a HIO recording session this weekend are looking pretty slim. May have to be bearer of not-so-good news tomorrow...

Friday, October 9, 2009

Early weekend

Cold, rainy days usually means a bit of downtime at the office. How does one spend this bonus leisure?

Wednesday, October 7, 2009


Walker, our English Setter, died yesterday from a ruptured spleen. It was sudden and unexpected.

Carey and I acquired Walker in 2003 as a six month old rescue from a puppy mill. He had some minor health problems throughout his life, and in the back of our minds knew there would be a chance that Walker may not make it to experience the ripe old age of twelve. The veterinarian (and Carey's former employer) informed her the rupture was more than likely due to a congenital defect of the spleen, which is not an uncommon malformation associated with this particular breed.

He now rests under three oak trees with Bob the goldfish, a parakeet, and a bearded dragon for neighbors.

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Graham Coxon

From 2004's Happiness in Magazines.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Get comfy

Conceived and created by Jem Finer, the Longplayer began on December 31, 1999 and is set to continuously play without repetition until December 31, 2999 from the Trinity Buoy Wharf in London. More info about the project can be found at the Longplayer home page.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Lorbeer... in Madrid

Just standing around. Again.

Monday, September 28, 2009

Hee-I Hee-I-O

Hentai Improvising Orchestra, along with Dennis Gonzalez, Yells At Eels, Taylor Ho Bynum, and M.F.M., will be performing at The Phoenix Project in Dallas the Friday after Thanksgiving. Huzzah!

Saturday, September 26, 2009


Today: building tuneage for the future album.

And now for something completely different:

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Ronnie and friends. Again!

A touch of Asperger's? Maybe. Enough to the point where I had to purchase The First Barbarians: Live from Kilburn today.

Killer lineup: Session masters Willie Weeks (bass) and Andy Newmark (drums) with Keith Richards, Ian McLagan, Rod Stewart, and (of course) Ronnie Wood, whom apparently raided Liza Minnelli's wardrobe on this particular night.

Thursday, September 17, 2009


Back in the 1990s Marcus Cable (which bought Sammons Cable, then was bought itself by Charter, which in turn became Time Warner. File under "U" for "Useless information"... ) had a channel called The Box where one could order and play music videos. This was one that was in heavy rotation on the channel. Haven't thought about this song in years and now I'm giggling like an idiot. Where's a sedative when you need one?

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Don't look

Seriously, it's not worth posting. Posting a post stating that whatever I saw was not worth posting was probably not worth posting, either.

Monday, September 14, 2009

Take a look at the guy

Ken's point to an article regarding Mick Taylor's plight brought on (partly) by a financial buttfuck courtesy of Jagger and company got me thinking about... well, Taylor's replacement. Yeah, tough luck, Mick, but stream of consciousness, etc.

For the record, as a whole, I cannot stand the Rolling Stones, but concede that I do like a few of their tunes. And I like Ronnie Wood. And I do like his first solo album, 1974's I've Got My Own Album To Do.

Saturday, September 12, 2009


Love a good ole rain soaked, dreary day (except it seems to tax our septic. That's an hour and half I would love to get back from last night, trying in vain to plunge the toilet and bathtub... but I digress). Today I have been working on a tune called "Horse" for a future project, finally enforcing a strict order to this new endeavor on myself and focusing on one song at a time. Too many irons in the fire and all that.

Switching gears... today I woke up with this tune (still) stuck in the brain box. Thanks, Herman's Hermits, you bastards.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Not working 9 to 5

As if I have in the last fifteen years.

Spent the sunshine hours of yesterday mostly sitting at Cliff's Auto in Weatherford waiting for the truck to have its a/c and ball joints mended. Walked down the road around noon to partake in my favorite meal at Whistle Hill (turkey bacon avocado on a croissant and Italian creme cake with a cup of coffee), a place which I haven't visited in over a year. Headed back towards the garage and was there until nearly 5:30 when the work on the Chevy was finally completed.

About seven-ish met Terry and Ken at the Bull and Bush on Montgomery to chinwag and have a brew (and a slice of pizza from Central Market, courtesy of Mr. Shimamoto). At least the day ended on a good note with friends and beer.

God, didn't that sound like a commercial! Drink responsibly™.

Monday, September 7, 2009

Cue the strings

Woke up with this in the noggin for some reason. Far from being an aficionado of classical music, I do enjoy listening to it. Conducted by the late Herbert von Karajan.

Thursday, September 3, 2009


Feel like a banana but look like a lemon.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Many faces. Many facets. Some facetiousness.

With Eno:

Eno free. Now with Jobson:

Then there were three:

Then there were none. Big Train puts forth a scenario of Chairman Mao rising from his deathbed to take the role of Bryan Ferry singing "Virginia Plain" a la TOTP:

Friday, August 28, 2009

Pulp'n again

The Scott Walker produced We Love Life for the commute today. Video from La Route Du Rock in St Malo, France.

Thursday, August 27, 2009


For a Thursday afternoon. Why exactly? I do not know.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Six degrees and such

Brought into existence by Ken Lockie and Keith Levene under the original moniker The Quick Spurts, Cowboys International would release one LP (1979's The Original Sin) and a handful of singles before dissolving in 1980. The group was a revolving door of members, consisting at one time or another such musicians as Terry Chimes (The Clash), Marco Pirroni (Adam and the Ants), and Steve Shears (Ultravox). Ken Lockie and bassist Pete Jones would go on to join (briefly, and Lockie left just about as quickly as he came) post-Wobble, post-Flowers of Romance Public Image Ltd., which Jones' tenure with the group would be captured on the official/unofficial Commercial Zone (1983) album.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

The Originator

Master toaster and supreme manipulator of the mix, the roots of hip hop and the birth of dub can be contributed to U-Roy.

Memory jog

In the synaptic archives and brought out from a lap around YouTube: Lizzy Mercier Descloux. A pioneer of the No Wave and World Beat genres, the first vid contains two songs (a cover of Arthur Brown's "Fire" and original composition "Torso Corso") from her 1979 debut Press Color and the second is a tune from her sophomore effort, 1981's Mambo Nassau.

Friday, August 21, 2009

Embedage action (and other made up words TBA)

Embedding has been enabled for this rare clip of Kleenex, which has resided on YouTube since the end of last year. Hooray!

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Aerosol Burns

From Beat Rhythm News- Waddle Ya Play? (1979).

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Michael Gambon

His interview from his last visit on Top Gear in 2006 still cracks me up every time.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Hentai gear

Wanna sport some HIO bling? Then click over to!

Politics with a bullet or two

From the folks who bring civilization to a country near you.

Makes one wonder if the DNA of these people cry themselves to sleep at night...

Monday, August 17, 2009

Ergo, the nomics

Maybe I'm just thick (well, more thick) this morning but do I need a manual on how to operate this pen?

Sunday, August 16, 2009

HIO and PFFFFT! news

Video from Hentai Improvising Orchestra's first gig has been posted by Terry Horn on the band's page at

Tracks from November and December's 2008 shows at the now defunct Fairmount have been mixed, edited, and uploaded on Katboy's PFFFFT! page by Matt Hembree. A couple of tracks will be contributed to an upcoming comp release by Indian Casino Records.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

RIP Les Paul

The man who brought us multitrack recording and the iconic guitar which bears his name, passed away today at age 94 from pneumonia. Article can be found at Associated Press.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

The Wobble factor

With Can men Holger Czukay and Jaki Liebezeit. From Full Circle (1982).

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Mondays and Grapes

When Shaun Ryder could be bothered he's downright brilliant.

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Ad Hocula

Courtesy of

James Williamson is set to play songs from Raw Power with Bay Area band at San Jose's The Blank Club. Article and interview with Mr. Williamson from NBC Bay Area.

Monday, August 3, 2009

Weekend update

Saturday and Sunday: After receiving the green light last week, began the mixing process for One Fingered Fist's upcoming album and their half of the split record with The Me-Thinks. I'll work on a few more of their tunes later today after work.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Itinerary... ish

Writing and recording tunes (yes, in the plural form!) for a new album while trying to hammer out some ideas for another project, the latter which will probably not come to fruition for quite some time. In regards to the as of yet named album, the tracks will be made available on the MySpace page as free downloads.

Huzzahs will be in order if I manage to not lose the plot...

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

One for the road

Fell for Fu Manchu in the summer of '97 upon purchasing In Search Of... from Forever Young Records in Arlington. About the heaviest album I've ever heard (imagine Masters Of Reality put through a sifter and refined down to its most base and pure elements).

Enough gushing, eh?

Monday, July 27, 2009

Strangely enough

Sometimes life mimics a Jim Henson Production.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

The Edison's dead

Tonight's show at the Firehouse Art Gallery has been canceled due to an electrical issue (read: there is none at the facility) due to, as Ken phrased it, "an act of God or someone with a backhoe". We'll try to rebook as soon as possible.

Thursday, July 23, 2009


Yes, I love ABBA. Wanna make something of it?

Probably my favorite song of theirs, from 1975's ABBA. The hook during the last half of the refrain still manages to give the goosebumps.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009


Turkish coffee at King Tut on Magnolia sounds great. Seems like another lifetime since the last time I was there. Ghosts from the past are the memories of yesterday...

Monday, July 20, 2009

Friday, July 17, 2009


Criminally underrated guitarist Steve Hackett's beautiful composition from Genesis' 1972 album, Foxtrot. Footage taken from a 1990 performance in Nottingham.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

The Missile

Mister Beardy-With-A-Camera doesn't really provoke the same response from me, but I love King Missile. Each to their own, eh?

Monday, July 13, 2009

Loop de loop

All weekend. Today. I'm probably cracking up in more than one way...

Friday, July 10, 2009

Mining, perfect harmonies

And riffage? More to Wales than one may think.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Match of the Day... reviewed!

Scribe/friend/co-conspirator Ken Shimamoto graciously tortured his ears for the sake of penning a review of the album for I Love Fort Worth:

Call Matt Hickey “Mr. Misunderstood.”

Reviewing Search for Numb, the debut full-length from his band the Fellow Americans, I accused him of harboring “an unhealthy obsession with the Oklahoma City bombing.” (The song I quoted in support of this thesis, Hickey insisted, was about a bottle of champagne.) That very same disc garnered praise from no less of a personage than ex-Village Voice music editor Chuck Eddy on the basis of a T-shirt Hickey was wearing in the CD cover pic, which Eddy assumed was a Pere Ubu referent when in fact it was the name of another, even more obscuro outfit. Hickey then demonstrated his penchant for the quixotic and willfully perverse by releasing a CD that folks who know will tell you was the best thing he’s ever done (even going back to his pre-Famericans band, the late, lamented Rio Grande Babies), then turning around and breaking up the band before they’d played a single show in support of said CD.

Full disclosure: Matt Hickey is a friend of mine. We sometimes drink beer at the Bull & Bush together. After he’d pulled the plug on the Famericans, I coaxed him out of “retirement” to play a farewell show with Stoogeaphilia at the Moon. I invited him to play with me in the improv band PFFFFT!, in which context he sat on the floor behind my amplifier, playing nearly-inaudible synthesizer. It seems he didn’t like the pressure of performing live with the Famericans, particularly when he was serving as frontman after singer Jeff Price bailed while copies of Search for Numb were still hot off the presses. When PFF(F)T! joined forces with Terry Horn and Mark Cook’s Yanari to be reborn as the Hentai Improvising Orchestra, Hickey built himself a simulacrum of a traditional Indian instrument called a gopichand from a Folger’s coffee can and bits of guitar detritus. Terry and Mark call him “Gopi-Matt.”

Hickey’s an Uber-Angophile – he digs soccer and Guinness -- whose ears are big enough to dig PiL and Throbbing Gristle as well as Blur and, um, Deep Purple. He lives in Weatherford with his novelist wife and they raise horses. He’s always having to leave the gig early so he can muck out the stables or whatever it is people who live in Weatherford do. He has a quirky sensahumour and likes random weirdness, which perhaps explains this, the debut release from his portentously named solo project.

Match of the Day comes to you in a manila project folder, probably filched from his day job, that lists the contents as “1 CD-R, 1 Photocopy of the album cover,” the total selling price as 99 cents (he’ll sell you a copy via his Myspace thingy for two bucks postpaid), and the net profit as “priceless.” The music consists of a single track, 45 minutes long, which sounds like the noise a cassette makes while it’s getting mangled by an unruly tape player. Hickey says the piece was kloodged together from several shorter pieces, which appear to have been overlayed on top of each other – “A aural loaf I refused to pinch.” He adds, “It was fun, though, throwing everything into the mixer and hearing what sonic cacophony came of it.” If you listen to it long enough (a feat it took me three tries to accomplish), you can actually hear variations within this sonic soup – kind of like the snippets from Beethoven that Lou Reed claimed were woven into Metal Machine Music.

I heartily recommend this disc to any club sound technician who’s been searching for a soundtrack that’s guaranteed to clear the room at closing time.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009


That's so clever! Hard to believe your global empire is in the can...

Friday, July 3, 2009

Blur in Hyde Park, 3 July, 2009

Clips from today's Hyde Park show. Blur will play there again tomorrow. Hopefully these vids will be left in peace on YouTube.

Dead man selling!

Pitching beyond the grave. Billy Mays and the Simoniz Fix It Pro Pen make two commercial visits during the Science of the Movies slot.

Will one man's death provide extra mileage for cheap crap? Sigh.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Blur at Glastonbury, Part II

Clips from BBC2's live broadcast.

ADDENDUM: Apparently the BBC brought down the legal hammer and the clips have been removed from YouTube. Bummer.

Match of the Day news

I've set the album's release date for July 6, though it may take until the first week in August before it's available to download from Amazon, iTunes, etc. It will be available for purchase on the release date as a limited edition CD with special packaging. Feel free to send an email or contact me through MySpace and/or Facebook if you would like to procure a copy for yourself.

Monday, June 29, 2009

Coming soon

Putting some artwork together for the new JATSDFM album Match of the Day, which will be available to download in the near future. Stay tuned...

ADDENDUM: Here's the virtual cover.

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Blur at Glastonbury

According to the Twitter feeds as I am typing this blog, Blur is apparently putting on one hell of a performance upon the Pyramid Stage at Glastonbury. The performance is also being broadcast live on BBC2, which unfortunately is not available stateside even via online. Damn!

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Wack attack

Apparently the only thing that wasn't plastic or augmented by a surgical procedure on Michael Jackson went kaput today in Los Angeles. Jackson had made a request to be buried with several children to service him in the afterlife.

Oh, and Roger Daltrey, er, I mean Farrah Fawcett also passed away today.

The deaths of entertainers seems to garner more attention and emotional investment* from our celebrity obsessed culture than, say, global warming or poverty. Bleh.

*Let's be honest, probably more for Jackson than Fawcett because:
1. Plastic boy has a HUGE global fan base (i.e. "nutters").
2. Kate Jackson and Jaclyn Smith are hotter.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Book, anyone?

Unscientific America: How Scientific Illiteracy Threatens our Future by Chris Mooney (The Republican War on Science, Storm World: Hurricanes, Politics, and the Battle Over Global Warming) and Sheril Kirshenbaum (marine scientist and Research Associate at Duke University) will be available for purchase on July 13. Pre-order a copy today!

From the book's homepage:

From a Scientist and a Writer: A Plea to Change Our Science-Anemic Culture

In his famous 1959 Rede lecture at Cambridge University, the scientifically-trained novelist C.P. Snow described science and the humanities as "two cultures," separated by a "gulf of mutual incomprehension." And the humanists had all the cultural power—the low prestige of science, Snow argued, left Western leaders too little educated in scientific subjects that were increasingly central to world problems: the elementary physics behind nuclear weapons, for instance, or the basics of plant science needed to feed the world's growing population.

Now, Chris Mooney and Sheril Kirshenbaum, a journalist-scientist team, offer an updated "two cultures" polemic for America in the 21st century. Just as in Snow's time, some of our gravest challenges—climate change, the energy crisis, national economic competitiveness—and gravest threats--global pandemics, nuclear proliferation—have fundamentally scientific underpinnings. Yet we still live in a culture that rarely takes science seriously or has it on the radar.

For every five hours of cable news, less than a minute is devoted to science; 46 percent of Americans reject evolution and think the Earth is less than 10,000 years old; the number of newspapers with weekly science sections has shrunken by two-thirds over the past several decades. The public is polarized over climate change—an issue where political party affiliation determines one's view of reality—and in dangerous retreat from childhood vaccinations. Meanwhile, only 18 percent of Americans have even met a scientist to begin with; more than half can't name a living scientist role model.

For this dismaying situation, Mooney and Kirshenbaum don't let anyone off the hook. They highlight the anti-intellectual tendencies of the American public (and particularly the politicians and journalists who are supposed to serve it), but also challenge the scientists themselves, who despite the best of intentions have often failed to communicate about their work effectively to a broad public—and so have ceded their critical place in the public sphere to religious and commercial propagandists.

A plea for enhanced scientific literacy, Unscientific America urges those who care about the place of science in our society to take unprecedented action. We must begin to train a small army of ambassadors who can translate science's message and make it relevant to the media, to politicians, and to the public in the broadest sense. An impassioned call to arms worthy of Snow's original manifesto, this book lays the groundwork for reintegrating science into the public discourse--before it's too late.

Friday, June 19, 2009

Reunion, 13 June, 2009

A few clips from Blur's East Anglian Railway Museum gig last Saturday.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

In fragments

New material is being produced in small chunks and unfinished. There will also be a Research & Development Department for the sole purpose of creating singles. I can't write or say that with a straight face, but it's absolutely true.


Monday, June 15, 2009

The lucky few

Blur will be playing a compact set somewhere in London shortly to the 170 people who were fortunate enough in securing a ticket from the Brixton Academy Box Office today at 11:00am (their first gig together since 2000 was held this past Saturday for 150 friends, family, and contest winners in a goods shed at the East Anglian Railway Museum). Green with envy? Yes.

Friday, June 12, 2009

When the Met was mighty

In the Metallica Year 7 BC (Before Crap) Cliff, Kirk, James, and Lars released a thundering debut album, for which the metal gods looked upon and thought good.

Lon Friend-esque cheesiness aside...

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Scary Uncle Joe

In keeping with the political theme... somewhat:

Last night the "Nocturnal Cerebral Theatre" had me cast as Molotov at the side of Stalin. I was joyful but terrified at the same time, with the sense of hopelessness upon the realization that the only means of escape from this monolith of a madman would come from an order of death signed by his hand.

Then I woke up to the sound of Nugget attempting to vomit on Carey's head.

Monday, June 8, 2009

Learning from history, anyone?

For some, no.

It's probably not a secret to anyone who knows me (or those who at least read some of my posts) that I love -really love- Great Britain, which is why it was a bit disheartening to learn that nearly 950,000 of its citizens voted for the xenophobic racist British National Party and giving them a fungal toehold in the European Parliament. I acknowledge the two seats gained by the BNP is nowhere near the scope and scale of the National Socialist's rise in Germany during the 1930s, but the fact that these thugs won any seats at all is nevertheless disturbing.

Some voters gave the BNP a tick because of their disapproval with Conservative and Labour's handling of the economic downturn (which brings to mind the old cliche of removing one's nose etc.), while others bought into their foreigner (read "non-white") scapegoating claptrap. These are times that try many a person's soul, and some have shown their shortsightedness and/or lack of mettle by giving this once marginal hate group a larger stage to perform on.

You can visit BBC News Online for more info regarding the 2009 European Election.

Friday, June 5, 2009

Keep the build up on the low

Romance of the Artifact I is complete. A limited edition one of one.

Tracks: Hmmm... very well could be some.

I'll post some pics on MySpace and Facebook soon.

Undergoing metamorphosis

The Yanari/PFF(F)T! project is now an entity in its own right known as the Hentai Improvising Orchestra. You can also check out our creations here.

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Co'mon, my son!

Get off your lazy ass, pick up the Gorilla Glue, and your "album" is finished.

Monday, June 1, 2009


Always a blast getting to hang out with the guys from One Fingered Fist, who came out to the studio yesterday and finished recording guitar and vocal tracks from their sessions back in November. Should be a good listen when the project is complete. Hooray!

Friday, May 29, 2009

For Carey

It's your fault! Evil knights and all that jazz...

Wednesday, May 27, 2009


Brought along Hall of the Mountain Grill for the commute today. Hoping not to "disappear in smoke" after retrieving the truck from the shop this morning...

(B/W "The Psychedelic Warlords (Disappear in Smoke)"; incorrect album cover shown with song)

Monday, May 25, 2009

Bone idleness

It's been a lazy sort of day for me. The highlight? Shaving off the last three hairs on my head and three day stubble on the face. The low point? The Mensa Convention next door who decided to manicure their front lawn with several cans of gasoline and a match, because the utilization of a mower would had been ridiculous.

Saturday, May 23, 2009

These days

Those who actually follow this blog may noticed that I've been on a bit of a Pulp kick this past week. That being said, it's now time to switch gears... and post some videos of Jarvis Cocker performing material from his new album, Further Complications, which was released last Monday. Bon apetite!

Maybe next time

A fifty percent chance of showers and storms for this evening and tomorrow has killed the chance of recording One Fingered Fist this Sunday. Here's to next weekend, sunny skies, and beer!

Friday, May 22, 2009

JATSFM'n and other matters

Finishing up the debut LP (technically a quarter LP - all in due time, dearies) Romance of the Artifact and working on new material for a more "vanilla" release sometime in the future.

Weather permitting, One Fingered Fist (ADDENDUM: link fixed) will be returning to the casa for some recording action this Sunday.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Now with more Pulp

There, Mister Smarty Pants. Happy?

From Pulp's most recent studio album (and potentially last, as Cocker had placed the group on indefinite hiatus seven years ago) We Love Life (2001).


From Ken:

yanari/PFF(F)T! online

while he hasn't yet gotten around to titling the pieces, matt hembree has the first recorded evidence of yanari/PFF(F)T!, from our 4.29.2009 stand at lola's 6th, online at katboy's PFFFFT! archive. terry horn has posted some vid from the same show on yanari's virb page.

the players are terry horn (turntables, laptop), matt hickey (electric gopichand, synth), matt hembree (bass), jon teague (drums), ken shimamoto (gtr), and mark cook (warr gtr, loops).

Monday, May 18, 2009

Days past

Jarvis Cocker and crew performing "Monday Morning" on Channel 4's The White Room from fourteen years ago, which doesn't sound right to me. Don't know what I babbling on about, really...

Asshole Day

I've also experienced Moron Week and Dumb Ass Month, not to mention The Year of the Twat (2004).

Serenity now, dammit!

Wednesday, May 13, 2009


Manda Rin and The Rinettes performing at The Fly in London last September.

Monday, May 11, 2009

Beat it... to death

Ken's post from yesterday brought to my attention a version of The Stooges' "Johanna" I never heard before. It's a tune Ig and the boys never seemed fully satisfied with, thus the many, many reworkings (and, in my opinion, became more and more lifeless with each revision). By the time the song was "officially" released on Kill City (the Pop/Williamson collaboration) it had lost its primal edge.

Here's an early version which I originally discovered on the French fan club released Rubber Legs LP. Too bad the tune wasn't left alone because this incarnation was one hell of a monster.

Friday, May 8, 2009

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Eric n' Ernie

The things that occupy the ol' grey matter...

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Not all a "Blur"

Damon Albarn and Danger Mouse with me on the commute today. Feel good, indeed.

Monday, May 4, 2009


A couple from the album.

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Hysteria and irrationality

Hate jumping onto the headline bandwagon, but Carey informed me that her uncle and cousin who reside in New Zealand made headlines in their local newspaper after they were both quarantined following a football match with a team from Mexico in which one of their players was positive for the virus (the rest of her cousin's squadron was also put on watch). The rest of their household was not put under quarantine, though. Makes perfect sense, eh? You can read the article here.

For a reliable, factual resource regarding swine flu (and pretty much anything scientific in general) astronomer Phil Plait's blog is a good place to start. Go there, damn you, and stay away from those conspiratorial nutjobs, why don't ya?