Month: May 2014

A sobering thought?

An old blog.

Coded with me own hands, that.

This website turned 14 yesterday.

Well, not quite. That’s the date I first registered this domain, many moons ago while living in London. There was a whole other weblog here for a long time – called |lukelog| – which was my first introduction to the public eye, I suppose. It didn’t always look as it does on the left, mind.

I set it up after seeing my flatmate Meg’s blog, and it pretty much consumed me. I wrote a lot, much of it terrible, and much of it presenting a pretty ropey portrait of my mental health and self-confidence levels than I ever would have thought at the time. It’s probably a hint as to why the archives for |lukelog| aren’t to be found here: it’s a little like reading diaries from your teens. It all seems a bit facile and innocent now, somehow.

It was fun, don’t get me wrong: being the kind of odd addition to the GBlogs stable, knowing some people who’ve since gone on to work in Important Web Things And Organisations. Hell, I was even nominated for the best European weblog in the inaugural Bloggies! (I didn’t win, though I should add it’s an honour just have been nominated and gee, shucks, I don’t know what to say.)

But at the same time, I was sort of beholden to the thing. I continually picked at it. And I ended up hating the sound of my own (typed) voice, as well as feeling weird about the whole concept. (Though I must admit, it was particularly great when people I’d never really met bought me replacement albums after I’d had my bag ransacked by some fuckhead at the Green Park Hotel on a trip back to Sydney.)

So I stopped. And now I’ve started again, though for slightly different reasons. It took a couple of false starts to arrive where we are, and I’m still unconvinced it’s a wholly worthwhile idea, but as long as I have reviews to add (or to save from the digital dustbin) I suspect I’ll keep going.

Anyway. 14 years. Cripes. Happy birthday, CaptainFez.

Book review: Zodiac and Zodiac Unmasked

Two book reviews for the price of one. Read before a re-watch of David Fincher’s Zodiac because these were instrumental in its creation. My advice? Stick with the film. There’s a little repetition in the reviews because REPETITION IS WHAT YOU GET FROM READING THESE BOOKS, BUCKO.

ZodiacZodiac by Robert Graysmith

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Cartoonist-cum-chronicle Robert Graysmith has a pretty decent retelling of the Zodiac killer story here. As well he should, given he was working at one of the newspapers to receive ciphers and cheery letters from the murderous astrology fan. (more…)

What Is Music? @ Annandale Hotel, Sydney, 13/02/2004

This is an older review of mine, presented here for archival purposes. The writing is undoubtedly different to the present, and the review style may differ between publications. Enjoy, if that’s the right word. 

Experimental or avant-garde music is occasionally referred to as “difficult listening”. It’s probably a phrase that was coined by someone after they survived a Fushitsusha gig. Don’t get me wrong – there were many moments of crystalline brilliance – but this was a gig that was always going to require a bit of perseverance.

Fushitsusha are, is, essentially, Keiji Haino. He’s a gargantuan figure in the Japanese music world, though he’s probably got more in common with JD Salinger in terms of his willingness to meet the press or press the flesh. This band is basically his excuse to be the loudest man on earth. From behind wraparound sunglasses, dressed head to foot in black and sporting a haircut so severe that it suggests a goth Ramone pixie, Haino would spend most of this evening playing through a wall of amps pushed louder than any I’d ever heard. (more…)

NO! I WILL FINISH IT!

This pretty much describes the attitude I’m going to force myself to take. Even though I may not be producing Death Bed: The Bed That Eats People, I have a couple of projects I Don’t Want To Let Slide.

And so, a reminder. No high-fives from God. Just a bunch of not-pissing-about.

Tomorrow. 

(Hear the rest of this Patton Oswalt show here.)

What Is Music? @ Gaelic Club, Sydney, 12/02/2004

WHAT? YOU'LL HAVE TO SPEAK UP.

Festival artwork, 2004.

This is an older review of mine, presented here for archival purposes. The writing is undoubtedly different to the present, and the review style may differ between publications. Enjoy, if that’s the right word. 

What Is Music? is a festival that’s been running since 1993 and aims to show gig-goers that there’s more to music than three chords and the truth. Judging from the mixture of baffled and ecstatic faces seen in The Gaelic Club this evening, the education continues.

As punters entered the room, Matthew Chaumont was already well under way. Seated in front of the stage, manning a couple of computers, a mixer, and what appeared to be a large speaker attached to a couple of metres of industrial ducting. Apparently called Metaphenomena, the piece was a series of bowel-shakingly low tones with a satisfyingly dirty texture. (more…)

Alan Moore and Tim Perkins: Angel Passage (2002)

Alan Moore and Tim Perkins: Angel Passage (re:)This is an older review of mine, presented here for archival purposes. The writing is undoubtedly different to the present, and the review style may differ between publications. Enjoy, if that’s the right word.

Angel Passage is an odd disc. It’s a studio reworking of a performance Moore and Perkins presented as part of the Tygers of Wrath concert, presented at the end of Tate Britain’s William Blake exhibition. And as such, it sits in no-man’s land; it’s not a run-of-the-mill spoken-word album, nor is it a cast-recording album. It’s a weird hybrid, like reading Moore’s meditation on Blake’s life while ghostly music that’s not quite separate floats through the air. Occasionally, it’s problematic — I just want to hear what he’s saying, dammit — but for the most part, it adds a well-judged air of mystery. (more…)