Thursday, November 11, 2004

October 30 (Saturday): Throwing Punches. Wow, this morning I wake up feeling utterly rank. I awaken to the new Bin Laden video on BBC News. Will these people please put some money into their television/media budget (perhaps take a little out of the pilot training program). How on earth are we supposed to take any message from this man seriously when it appears to be taped onto third generation Betamax video cassettes in front of a studio set that the BBC probably used on their first television broadcast back in 1936. The man tires me and just sends me straight back to bed. YES OSAMA WE ALL KNOW YOU’RE BUSH’S MATE, MICHAEL MOORE TOLD US.

Mid morning I murmur after sitting staring at the idiot box and internet. In order to justify my laziness I pull out the DVD Slackers that I bought in the summer and to date couldn’t be arsed to watch (those fuckers think their slackers? Nothing on me). The movie turns out to be arse and I sleep through a good (bad) portion of it. I only watch the movie really because I read in Hotdog that Jason Schwartzmann gives a scene stealing performance but to be honest, I’d probably be able to give a scene stealing performance in this donkey. And the guy who played Big Pete in Pete And Pete is horribly cheesy. Basically the only redeeming quality of this flick is the ginger bird from That 70s Show (Laura Prepon) looking rather “big” and attractive.

I shake all this off and manage to get out and get the newspapers.

When I return I MSN some with Tom, to find out how his meeting with his lady in London went. It sounds like it went good/well but it sounds like everyone is trying to give Tom all this really bad advice about the situation as he overanalyses things to death (I recognise these traits in my actions). I think I may help when I point out the positive version of the just plain obvious, also advising that people giving Tom advice are probably reflecting themselves onto him/his situation. I also remind him however that I shouldn’t be listened to, being an “unmarried marriage counsellor”.

The morning turns into afternoon and I remain slack, even too impatient to the point that I begin watching incomplete video downloads. I’ve decided to make something of routine now of watching Mystery Science Theater 3000 on Saturdays (shit, who wants to go out and actually have a life?). I watch an episode I once on the Sci-Fi Channel many moons ago (back in the day of living at home and having Sky). The episode/movie is called “The Incredibly Strange Creatures Who Stopped Living And Became Mixed-Up Zombies!!?” and is beyond description, horribly cheap and hammy. However Mike and the robots do not fail to deliver and rip the piss out of all on screen in the funniest way. Again I laugh out loud and discover a sense of humour still inside of me.

Something sends me to sleep after this, I have managed to muster a minor headache up from somewhere (the one I woke up with). A funeral of sores. The afternoon sees me sitting on my arse, listening to the football on internet radio. Today Millwall are at Stoke, which is a hard game and cannot be a fixture Millwall can expect to get anything from (especially judging things based on Tuesday). Once more Millwall have been in the news all week so I bet down in Stoke, they’re really welcomed with both arms wide open. In the end Millwall lose an apparent scrap as Stoke score in the 86th minute and Millwall go down to yet another fucking late goal.

At this point, having developed a right proper headache from doing absolutely nothing with myself, I decide I can’t be arsed to go out this evening.

Around 5PM my mind wanders again, as once more I take painkillers (my drug of choice) for my headache brought on by doing absolutely nothing. And as I listen to internet radio (post match reports) I hear a tune in the distance. “What the fuck’s that?”. It turns out to be the Godfather ringtone on my mobile and Richard calling; my god has it really been so long that I have forgotten how my ringtone goes? Dude rings me up and tells me that he and Justin and currently stood outside the Gap and he is asking me “when the hell did that appear?”. “Been there a while. We’ve got a Costa now too!”. Basically Colchester’s co-opting is one step short of completion, we now just lack a Starbucks. Richard asks me “where do you (one) go for a drink in Colchester these days?”. I dunno, so boringly I say “Hogshead” and I leave immediately.

By the time I hook up with Richard and Justin my head (mind) is thoroughly caning but I tear into a pint of Carlsberg (almost a Stella) figuring it will either make my head better or worse. It’s a kamikaze mission.

We hook up with Staff at the Arts Centre and it turns out that I fucking forgot the Extreme Noise Terror show on Thursday, which turns me very sheepish. Staff looks absolutely ravaged from the touring/playing experience that is Extreme Noise Terror. We get some food, opting for The Noodle Bar once Hub denies us (they stop serving food at 7PM for future reference). Inside Hub however I see the weirdest thing, a tubby girl that looks almost exactly like Phoebe staring at me. What’s the about? The Noodle Bar turns out to be more accommodating as we are given entry and we tuck into the finest cuisine in town (ha ha). I go for the beef option with my general swagger of “if these fuckers are veggies/vegans, then it is there problem”. Despite my sarcasm, I really enjoy my food but I’ll be fucked if I can actually eat noodles with chopsticks (I have a real complex since Phoebe told me I hold/held them wrongly). All the way through the meal Staff tells us more stuff about Extreme Noise Terror and V/VM, he is actually the best at telling music tales.

We return to the Arts Centre where Justin and Richard are co-promoting and doing a Bad Hand Records DJ set. I blag my way along and manage to get in for free (I love a freebie).

I hang around with Richard and Justin as they DJ and select tracks and I have never felt so out of the loop, I really do not know any of these bands/acts/songs. Earlier in the week Richard emailed a list of songs he was intending to DJ and when I downloaded the majority of them, they sounded like nothing I had heard.

As we wait for the first act, I see who I think is Dom Gentry who used to drum in Hirameka and it is him. I wave and he comes over and Dom is flying, he is cooler and friendlier than I think he ever was back in the days of Gringo. He tells me how he has been living in Sheffield and is now back in Halstead. He tells me how is now into programming breaks and when he was working as a promoter in Sheffield he hooked up with the likes of Adam Freeland and Blameless. It turns out that Dom is now really into music, perhaps with more enthusiasm than any other remaining member of Hirameka. That or he can really sell himself these days.

In the distance I see Adam from Cats Against The Bombs turn up with his brother Doug just as the opening act Calaco begins his set. Calaco is actually Jo Searles, one of the longest standing and most enthusiastic members of the Colchester music scene. Jo’s Calaco act is part of the Mutebox collective in Colchester that performs various experimental music events. Calaco turns out to be Jo playing solo with four guitars perched behind him, each ready to go. Jo is kitted out! Often during his set of quiet guitar pieces he is able to stop playing as his pedals take over and carry on the tune without him. On a night of headaches and hangovers, this is one of the better ways to start out.

After his set, I go over and see Adam and pretty much spend the remainder of the night hanging out with him and Staff at their table.

The second band on the bill is called Historia and they appear to stick out like a sore thumb in the middle of this bill. I have never previously heard of this band but they play reminding me of The Verve song “Life’s An Ocean”, back when Richard Ashcroft actually seemed to be making an effort. It’s a weird set, the band fail to set any worlds alight tonight but do do a commendable job with their set whilst battling such elements as equipment failure and having a singer that looks like the singer from Puddle Of Mudd whilst the cheaply besuited guitarist looks like a refugee from the Flaming Lips. Their drummer also looks fantastically bored through the duration of the set, he is hilarious without realising it. I take in their set thinking mainly of Jeff Buckley type music and fortunately for me, after their set Adam mentions the same. The band turn out to be ok but I am always going to be a sucker for someone playing with a slide and making a guitar sound like flight on an aeroplane.

I have to admit when Rothko turn up with an hour left before curfew, I live in a sense of dread, not really feeling any enthuse for their set. However the set turns out to be one of the most enjoyable I have seen/heard in a very long time. The is a real aura surrounding the band as they plough through a bass heavy/no guitar set complete with eerie violin sections. It all seems to have an organic, natural weather as generally post rock tends to consist of musical soundscapes that can often be compared to elements of moody weather. And Rothko are capable of performing this in abundance as they fill the venue with soothing sonics that clear my head and actually make for the perfect Saturday night of wanting to be easy. As the violinist switches to bass guitar (the third on the stage) the songs sound somewhat more tempered and the whole set contains a real air seriousness without going too far and becoming some kind of tainted affair of music snobbery. As the end comes to a genuinely mesmerising set, I find myself an honest fan of Rothko.

After the show we hang out at length and Staff asks me if I want to DJ at this week’s Full Bleed show (1 of 4) this Thursday with V/VM. Unfortunately I have my English class but Adam says he’ll do a Cats Against The Bomb DJ set which is likely to be warped and twisted as can be. In the end, I manage to get myself a spot DJing at the Macrocosmica show (YES!!!). At the end of the night, I get invited back to the aftershow at Staff’s but still finding semi rough and on a real high from the most enjoyable evening/gig I have been to in weeks, I quite while I am ahead.

Unfortunately, when I get to my car parked on Crouch Street, as I am half way home, I notice that my fucking driver’s side wing mirror is dangling off a cable. Someone has fucked my Focus! Evening ruined. I get home and inspect my car but find I can’t see shit as it is now pitch-black dark. I do however manage to cut my finger on some of the glass from the mirror that has been smashed. I go upstairs to bed, dreading just what state I am going to find my car in tomorrow morning in the light of day.

Late night Saturday night TV turns out to be pretty whack as some strange Minnie Driver movie called The Governess is on. I just cannot work out what is going on, what she is about and what fucking year/place it is set in. Insania. And then the next movie up is the TV movie version of The Great Gatsby starring the goddess Mira Sorvino. F. Scott Fitzgerald would fuck gone mental if he ever saw what they had made of his masterpiece. This version of the novel makes Andy Kaufman’s reading of it look good. I sleep.

np: Dean Martin - Volare


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