Showing posts from 2014


The ultimate aim of Google and Facebook is to merge with each other, to know each other in the biblical sense, to surround themselves with the accoutrements of the civilised world, aka the cream of the apps, and to provide us all with an alternate reality, another dimension. In this other dimension we will know, once and for all, not how we see the world and our place in it, but how the world sees us, in cold hard facts as well as in socially acceptable and easily digestible chunks,  and our place in that world. In this other dimension Google earth will not just show models of buildings, and photographs of forests, and glue all the satellite images of world geography together to make a kind of patchwork quilt, a familial hand-me-down version of planet earth, it will instead show us everything that is going on everywhere at any given moment... and even perhaps, those moments which are yet to arrive. Aka the future. Because to piece together everything that is knowable now is to o

Whirlpool With A Good Idea

There's a place you go, when you are making music. When your voice enters the picture, and slots down inside, in between the two bristling azure-blue mountain ranges of stereo to your left and right, and it shoots along like a neon jet fighter, like the ghost of Luke Skywalker, like an improbable bird of prey, down the throbbing, lucid length of that ravine of sound and when it clicks in it is ef fortless and eerie and brutally real and insanely now and the sound, the song, that thrusts up from deep in your soul and erupts out into the atmosphere is muscular and hollow and transparent like a tube of water and pulsing and ecstatic and it is so totally your own voice that everything else about you disappears into it, feeds into it, until you yourself, as others know you, are no more. The amount of energy required to deliver the song is the exact amount of energy that makes up your totality. So you have to continually circle yourself around the song, the sound of it, keep feeding thro

The Audient Will See You Now

My younger brother Andy used to come to just about every gig I played for about two years. He was diagnosed with Aspergers Syndrome when he was very young and while it can sometimes be considered a limiting condition it has other aspects that more than comfortably make up for any perceived shortfalls. His sensibility and knowledge about music, for example, is astonis hing. When he was ten years old he knew the names of every band who made the charts, the names of their hit songs, who they were signed to, who they used to be signed to, and who wrote the songs they sang. That's just a glimpse, though. Knowing my baby brother is an ongoing journey of discovery. One time a documentary maker came to one of my gigs and explained how he wanted to make a documentary about me and my brother. He thought it a fascinating story and worth pursuing. He was all excited about it and told us his plans for how to shoot it.... how he had contacts... you know the drill. My brother and I were like...&q

The Road To Freedom Is Paved With Words And Numbers

When I was fifteen and sixteen and seventeen years old I used to work for my dad at the horse race meetings every couple weeks.  He preferred me to work as his Penciller because I loved the pressure of making mathematical calculations on the spot with drunken adults waving wads of cash in my face. I thought it was the perfect job because it combined my natural proclivities for mathematics and str ess management (i.e.: couldn't give a shitness) in one career choice. Only thing was, it wasn't a career. You only worked Saturdays. Still, I made 60 bucks for four hours work which wasn't bad back in the day. Dad was only making 120 bucks a week in his full-time job at the wheat board. I know this because he used tell mum to take it easy down the shops cos she was spending 130 bucks a week on food. So at 15 I was rolling in it and it happened because I was good at math and in not taking people too seriously. So dad was a bookmaker and people would line up and make bets and he'

The Musical Artist Is Equal And Opposite To Every Environment You Can Imagine Him In

I spend the whole day in my hotel room. It’s minus four outside, with a light snow. I’d like to feel free to roam around the city but the risk of getting too cold, of coming back with some bug or a sore throat, it’s too great.  I got to stay inside and practice and prepare.  Today I don’t prepare that much. I play a little on the guitar, maybe an hour. The time flies by. I drink coffee. I check my  messages, my emails. I write to some venues in the UK that my wife has found trawling the net. I’m going over there in April and don’t have a single confirmed date yet with only eleven weeks to go. This tour started a week ago in Paderborn at a little place called “Sputnik” cafe. It’s a nice place and small. Most of the places I play are small and some are tiny. I figure when you are virtually unknown the amount of floor space you occupy at your gigs is out of proportion with the total space of the place. When you are not known you play to small rooms but you still need the same amount of sp