Week from Monday 1st August 2005

You will not be surprised that my trip to Reading also included a visit to just about all the record emporia of that fair Borough, "wants list" in hand. I re-bought "Focus At The Rainbow", Gil Scott-Heron's "Winter In America" and Syd Barrett's "Opel" in the new-fangled seedydisk medium at 'reasonable' prices and I also found a copy of the Floyd's "Atom Heart Mother" which I snapped up at a tenner, because Floyd albums are USUALLY FAR TOO DEAR anywhere else.

But FIND OF THE WEEK was the article of pure genius that is The Easy Star All-Stars' "DUB SIDE OF THE MOON" album, the whole of Pink Floyd's "Dark Side..." covered in a dub-reggae stylee and a disc I'd been trying to identify/find ever since I heard it played over the Festival PA, this time last year.

After the Festival was over (for me, anyway), I went and sat by the heavily lit (by the floodlights in the Festival car park) River Thames for an hour or three, tapped my feet to a couple of the newly purchased discs and watched the confused swans. I have some time to kill, while I wait for the opportunity to catch a slow 'milk' train to Portsmouth. I didn't, in the end, go for my planned walk on the Thames Path, as rain was forecast and I didn't want get 'caught short' miles from anywhere. I'm not sure if I would have had the energy, in any case.

Having stayed awake for a full twenty-four hours, I naturally needed an equal amount of sleep when I got home...

Men - Why spend money on pricey alcoholic beverages when you can achieve that "Morning After" hangover effect from a combination of sleep deprivation and a sinus-related inner ear infection? You'll have a realistic nauseating headache you'll be proud of, at a fraction of the cost...

Naturally, there will be hours of taped Radio 3 "highlights" to plough through, from now until next weekend (and possibly beyond). Of the 'other' two days-worth of Festivities, the ONLY people I've heard that I regret not seeing F'REAL, are the highly-entertaining performers of Tuvan cowboy songs, HUUN-HUUR-TU.

Returning to work, I find desperate e-pleas from THE HUMAN NAIL to help him with a problem with his 'new' PEECEE ("ExPee-SchmexPee", is what I say!). He informs me there is a new HAPPI SHIT PUMPKIN album coming up, so I suppose I'd better contribute... And SHELFY has some strange new 'musical' project up his sleeve (What's new?!) and needs technical assistance with a web design project.

Week from Monday 8th August 2005

I spent the weekend filtering through all the radio tapes of the WOMAD festivities. I must say, there wasn't anything I've found REALLY objectionable so far (no English or 'Celtic' folk music for a start!) but, with just one or two exceptions (HUUN-HUUR-TU, FARIDA & THE IRAQI MAQAM ENSEMBLE), very little I MISSED either.

I've just started reading BOB DYLAN's "Chronicles" (Part ONE, it says here!). If you want a definitive BIOGRAPHY of Dylan, full of things like FACTS and INFORMATION and CHRONOLOGY, then look elsewhere. But if you just want to wallow in the shear "AMERICANA" of it all, soak up the early-60s Greenwich Village 'Boho' scene, tarry awhile to hear some silly old bugger reminiscing, then this is the place!

By Friday morning, I'd "HAD ENOUGH" of "WORK", so I decided to RUN AWAY TO SEA - I went for another day out on the Isle Of Wight, BECAUSE IT'S THERE... I caught the bus to Newport, mooched about the town for a bit and then walked back to Ryde, admiring the unusual species of ornithology as I went. Naturally, as I'm crossing the sea and I Am One With The Sweeping Vistas, my soundtrack for the day is the "STILL SUITABLE FOR SAILING" GENESIS MP3 disk. Also naturally, I gravitated towards a few charity shops and secondhand reccerd emporia along the way, where I found a cheapo-lookin' MAGMA compilation (containing ALL the tracks from their much-favoured "UDU WUDU" and "ATTAHK" albums, plus a lengthy live tune) and another TRAFFIC album in all its "REMASTERED WITH EXTRA DOODADS" seedydisk glory, both at silly single-figure sums.

Week from Monday 15th August 2005

"THE FREAK ZONE" had another one of its 'LONG SONG SPECIALS' this week - always a pleasurable prospect, promising to be low on wafflage 'n' banter and fairly guaranteed to be a FALL-free area! There were twenty-minute-plus epics from FOCUS, ASH RA TEMPEL (complete with vinyl chip-shop effects), TRIUMVIRAT (got that one already!), NEIL ARDLEY (spoiled by duff poetry and shoobydoo singing - I decided to have my bath during this half-hour of the prog!), GODSPEED YOU BLACK EMPEROR and SANDY BULL (early-sixties cross-genre acoustic noodling - it so resembled some of our own 'making it up as we go along' acoustic thrashabouts, that I can't make up my mind if it's really ANY GOOD OR NOT!?).

SHELFY turned up and we went over to see former gridler ACCLAMATION DELIUS (or WILLY for short), who is a leading authority on HI-FALUTIN' TELLY TECHNOLOGY and wants a website designing... So I will. We also ended up at a record store, where I bought the latest LUAKA BOP compilation of crazy African Psychedelia...

Week from Monday 22nd August 2005

I came down to the cupboard on Saturday, because I wanted to hear the 'rest' of the ROBERT PLANT set from WOMAD, via the Beeb's streaming Audio Player. The sound quality was atrocious of course and, in this case, "streaming" is another word for "spluttering", but it'll do for now! I made a start on WILLY's website project while I was here.

That Luaka Bop disc, "WORLD PSYCHEDELIC CLASSICS 3 - FUNKY FUZZY SOUNDS FROM WEST AFRICA" (or something like that), has been my bus-listening choice for this week, AND NO MISTAKE!

There was a good free DVD in this weekend's Sunday paper (and one that works on my player for once!): the original ROGER CORMAN low-budget, black and white, 1960 version of "THE LITTLE SHOP OF HORRORS". The telly and press adverts tried to sell the idea that it was a "Jack Nicholson Movie", but fans will be disappointed, as the young fellow actually appears on screen for a mere two-and-a-half of its seventy minutes. It's a cracker though, and the soundtrack is terrific!

Speaking of soundtracks, "THE FREAK ZONE" was another 'special' this week, with lots of celluloid-accompanying goodies to be enjoyed. Highlights included THE THIRD EAR BAND's music for Roman Polanski's "MACBETH", the FLOYD's underrated "MORE" soundtrack and the music from "ROSEMARY'S BABY". There was also a lot of other stuff that DIDN'T work so well on the radio!

So, Farewell Then, DR ROBERT MOOG, Gone To That Great Ring Modulator In The Sky.

Week from Monday 29th August 2005

AU-GUST BANG SQUALOR DAYYYY!!! I mainly lolled about, reading another CARL HIAASEN potboiler and listening to an awful lot of PINK FLOYD, this week's 'craze'!?!

I also, of course, took in a CARBOOTERY, from whence I gleaned a number of desirable items at silly prices: the latest R.E.M. album for a fiver and, from someone who must have been, or at least KNEW someone who was a rep for Island Records back in the '80s, several discs of that ilk (THE WILD TCHOUPITOULAS, RONALD SHANNON JACKSON, THE STARTLED INSECTS and the "KOYAANISQATSI" soundtrack) all at 50p each! I also got some VERY useful software...