So last week (including my 28th birthday) was spent on nights.  They were fairly quiet, interesting and there was a nice team on so it wasn’t too bad and K took me out to a ‘breakfast restuarant’ for a birthday breakfast.  She got me tickets to see Nine Inch Nails up in Auckland next week which is awesome.  I love me some mainstream Industrial noise I do.

Feeling like I’ve dropped off the face of the planet recently so have spent a bit of time making up for it by contacting friends and the like.  I still have a few to get to but I’m trying.  We’re just about to head out for dvds and dinner with friends so had to curtail it (and instead blog…).

Listening to old Underworld at the moment which is bringing back many memories (points for claiming the song the above is from) and as I mentioned to Kristin the other day I’ve been on a big Led Zep bender recently.  A group I’ve only got into recently which is a shame as I’d have loved them years ago.

A few things that have been keeping me happy recently:

Astronomy Picture of the Day: the pictures from this are just stunning and leave me staring at my computer for long periods wishing space travel really existed.  Sign up to their feed.

Fox Fur, Unicorn, Christmas Tree

Wondermark: the comic that just keeps giving.  More hit than miss and invariably entertaining.  Plus he’s created some lovely collections available through Dark Horse Comics.

Anyway.  Enough for now.


New Mogwai song released from their forthcoming album The Hawk is Howling.  It’s called The sun smells too loud.  Not sure how I feel about it on first listen – it’s quite upbeat, almost pop-like which doesn’t remind me of the new tracks I saw at Queen Elizabeth Hall a month or so ago.  Very much looking forward to the new album though.  Mr Beast gradually did sink in but I’m still not a huge fan.

I don’t know if I ever mentioned this but I met Stuart Braithwaite at the above gig when he sat in front of me at the mixing desk during the Remember Remember set (which was truly stunning by the way – keep an eye out).  Stuart looked puzzled but did sign my book and drew a smiley face when I asked him.  The whole thing made me stupidly happy!  A hero of mine and all I can do is look stupid and ask for an autograph…What is the best way to deal with your heros?  Never meet them?

Check out the (legal) mp3 here

Been a while.  Been doing stuff.  Been happy.  Hence no need to write!  Although the astute readers may notice I am indeed writing (and by the time this is read will indeed have written) I’m still happy.  Just felt like it.

A few weeks back I saw Bowling for Soup live.  Really don’t ask.  I was made to go.  Still, despite the crappy music I did really enjoy the atmosphere of a few hundred kids really getting into it, singing along, dancing, moshing and generally having huge amounts of fun.  I kind of miss that at gigs as a lot of the bands I’m listening to seem to attract people who stand around without moving looking cool.  Displaying emotion seems to get you frowned at.  I’ve tried.  I miss my crowd surfing days…

Still, saw Ed Harcourt a few weeks back who played a really good set in front of barely any people (one of whom was his mum) in a lovely intimate setting.  There was no ‘backstage’ so at the end he had to come off through the crowd to hide behind a stairway long enough to come back for an encore.  That was nice.

And then last Friday I saw Iron & Wine at St George’s church which is pretty much one of the best venues I’ve been to.  A working church (annoying so on Sunday morning where it’s bells chime continuously for about 20 mins at 8am!), we sat at the end on the pews of the balcony, drinking mulled wine!  Perfect location for what was a wonderful gig.  I wasn’t a huge fan of the earlier two albums (a bit too stripped back and folky for me) but liked the Woman King EP and adore The Shepard’s Dog (one of my favourite albums of the year).  He mainly played the new tunes with a few older favourites and the band were great.

At one point between songs, some guy down the middle shouted out politely ‘This is brilliant, thank you!’.  That’s why I love living in Brighton!  The whole thing felt like he was playing in a communal front room.

Later that night staying at K’s house (which is directly opposite the church about 15ft over the road – hence the annoying bells at the weekend) we went into the kitchen to make some late night food and I saw him and the band packing away all the kit into their truck.  So I went over and had a chat with him.  And he was really nice!  Friendly, relaxed and very modest.  And because I’m geeky and get star struck I asked if he would sign my album (making me glad I do still buy cds), so now I have ‘To Andy, nice to meet you, Sam Beam’ on the inside.  Awesomeness.

Lots of other things are good too but that will do for now.  I am annoyed the Besnard Lakes have randomly cancelled their gig though.  Going to see Mono in a few weeks.  Got to go.