Monthly Archives: January 2011

More Political than Usual

This is a music blog. Nevertheless, there are some things that are happening at the moment that I think it’s impossible for even a musician who sings songs about giant ducks to completely ignore (in particular because some of them impinge on broadcasting and media, which is important to aspiring musicians).

There’s a lot of excellent reporting on all of these stories, but I don’t think enough people are thinking about them all in one place, as if they may all be connected. To try and argue that they are – my only objective here – I’ve made a list, with links, of the things I think are worth joining up. I have tried to do this without any editorialising (other than the selection process itself) and have done my best to cite only bare facts, in as neutral a tone as I can manage:

a) The BBC are doing some seriously hardcore journalism over in Egypt. It’s not a first-order story in England, and it’s getting out mainly through the world service and the BBC news website, both of which are about to be cut drastically.
b) Rupert Murdoch is coming to England to personally lead News Corp’s negotiation for the full takeover of BSkyB. The British culture secretary, Jeremy Hunt, had previously said he was referring the case to the Competition Commission, but has now decided to give News Corp a chance to persuade him.
c) The News of the World, also owned by News Corp, continues to be at the centre of an enormous scandal involving phone-hacking. Today, the Met (who have been curiously reticient to investigate in spite of the scale of the accusations) officially reopened the case.
d) Sky TV, also owned by News Corp, has fired a football commentator for making sexist comments when he thought no microphones were on. We’re talking ‘proper dinosaur sexism’ here, real old school stuff. In an apology statement issued today (read it closely), he has not apologised.
e) The Sun newspaper, also owned by News Corp, responded to (d) by printing pictures of the woman who was the target of the sexist remarks, taken in a nightclub.


I just updated the gigator for what turns out to be the first time since October. Ouch. Better late than never, but there was a painfully small amount to add. Living in London, surprisingly, makes getting show much harder, not easier! I am at Catweazle Oxford this Thursday, but in a hosting capacity once again, so I probably won’t be playing. Nevertheless, that’s my only currently timetabled live appearance. Let’s do something about that! Message me if you know places you think I should play…

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The Gallop of the Monkey Horse

Who says I don’t write songs any more, eh?

Shaking the Old Forest’s every last tree
From the roots to the shoots of the high canopy
A charging wind strom, an impossible form,
Tangles the twigs in its tracks.
What is this terrible silhouette-something
Through the brackeney dew galumphing?
Fast as a hairdryer, legs gimbol and gyre
Shoving the shrubs on their backs.


FaceOmeter reporting

It’s been a while, but not because we’ve been letting grass grow under our feet! The Spooky EP is verging on being written, with a new FaceOmeter contribution, ‘Sentiments Expressed by Dr. Klaus Diemler, mad scientist, upon seeing his hideous new creatin take flight for the first time’. It’s a winner! We have a provisional tracklist and just 1.5 lyrics to write between three of us before we can start recording. Holy goodness!

Max and I slew Goring Unplugged last night, and Goring Unplugged slew us right back. We had a wonderful time and very much enjoyed being out of London for a little while.

And Railroad operations continue apace – check out this new flyer from the pen of the Swindler:

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