Category Archives: Uncategorized

Trompe-l’œil in Reykjavík.

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This was the pinnacle of Iceland for me. No, not the Blue Lagoon or expedition around the Golden Circle, but a striking visage transplanted on the side of a derelict warehouse by the port of Reykjavík. I don’t know where it’s from but it has something of the Persona (1966) about it. The capital had a lot of this going on – graffiti artists spraying walls seemingly willy-nilly, and in broad daylight. Avant-garde ghetto.

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VHS was/is better.

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I was given a VHS player last month and a big batch of videos. I was always a DVD aficionado but realised something about 70 minutes into Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade (1989), this the movie in which Sean Connery plays Harrison Ford’s dad yet is a mere 12 years older than him in real life.

My thought was: I never skip scenes on a movie if it’s VHS because I can’t be fucked pressing the fast-forward button. It creates a whole new appreciative viewing experience, even if the film is pish.

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N.B. The Rock (1996) is a masterpiece. I’m convinced a Michael Bay clone made the picture.

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O2 outage – premonitions of Skynet.

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25 million customers losing the plot over an ‘outage’ due to “faulty software”. Shit came to a standstill because we can’t function without data.

It reminded me of an episode at Edinburgh’s Corn Exchange when their electronic ‘stuff’ stopped working so they had to add up drinks order prices with a calculator; it was too diabolically stressful for them and the masses were fuming.

The technology ends up, to paraphrase the movie Fight Club (1999), owning us. James Cameron was right and Skynet will be very real. Just wait until O2 becomes self-aware and hacks the nuclear codes.

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Further reading:

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-46464730

https://www.theguardian.com/business/2018/dec/06/o2-customers-unable-to-get-online

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Turquoise anomaly.

IMG_20181130_102853162_HDRAbbeyhill/Meadowbank is a veritable toilet, by all accounts a shithole. George Best once drank here at the Artisan Bar when he played for Hibs. That’s the legacy of this ghetto. These days it’s a junkie paradise. However, this building is nuts, totally #peacocking. Scenes.

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Edinburgh Christmas Market.

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The Xmas Market is back, Edinburgh’s ‘winter wonderland’. Stalls selling tacky clobber, ‘German’ food and drink at Weimar Republic-level prices, and jingle bells noises.

Personally, I think it’s shite, but it lures in the tourists and scares away the junkies because they get too confused by bright lights and the smell of warm food.

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Poland memories.

10750374_10154934770300691_2452287216617809569_oFour years ago today consisted of crawling from Warsaw to Gdansk on some shitty crapper of a bus, absolutely melted into oblivion. Both cities were hellholes, but the booze was cheap as fuck. And that’s all that matters.

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Saughton Park – refurbished.

 

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Slap-bang in the middle of the Saughton ghetto is this anomaly. All around crime is rampant and social housing derelict, but I believe millions have been spunked on the park’s upgrades; the epicentre must be a beacon of light. It’s always chock-full of chavs, though, creatures who resemble those chortling Toon Patrol weasels in Who Framed Roger Rabbit (1988). But the park looks lovely, doesn’t it?

 

Further reading:

http://www.edinburgh.gov.uk/info/20162/saughton_park_project/924/saughton_park_restoration_project

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Deadmau5 was in Edinburgh.

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The Corn Exchange at Chesser isn’t used to grandiose events. The progressive house master did, however, give us locals a two-hour treat, reeling off classics from ‘Longest Road’ to ‘Strobe’. Lots of folk looked like they were on eccies. Sadly, I wasn’t. But I wish I was. Nevertheless, this is the most exciting thing to ever occur at Chesser since a flasher was lifted in the Asda car park a few years back.

 

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Black Friday is approaching.

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It’s almost here again, our contemporary version of Dawn of the Dead (1978) in which hordes of consumer-goods-obsessed zombies storm retail outlets with abandon, many of these creatures camping outside the store overnight so as to snatch a discounted TV come opening time. Some of the scenes are simultaneously horrifying and hilarious. What a time to be alive. Mutants.

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808s & Heartbreak – memories made in the coldest winter.

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I first heard this album as I wandered aimlessly around Stockholm in December 2008, bar to bar and park to park apropos of nothing; I was merely documenting with some shitty camera phone the Venice of the North in winter. I was by no means lonely as I caught up with various travelling characters at the hostel after sundown, but the Kanye West soundtrack that accompanied daylight and early evening certainly had a great effect on me.

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Drottninggatan.

I’ve always thought that music elevates the normal up into the cinematic, that there’s an extra reverence thrown in the mix. I had nothing profound to think about but ‘Street Lights’ or ‘Coldest Winter’ synced to me staring at a pigeon eating a discarded Subway butty was rather transcendental. Stockholm was the city for this moody music, and a walk back from Systembolaget to City Backpackers through Sodermalm with a £40-equivalent bottle of manky rum and additional ’08 Auto-Tune was a most brooding adventure.

I know nothing about Kanye West but this soul-searchingly depressing album – at times it’s like a self-pitying drunk crying about how his/her life went down the pan – is a cracker. I like the miserable and Kanye West is the one for me.

Further reading:

https://pitchfork.com/features/overtones/9725-the-coldest-story-ever-told-the-influence-of-kanye-wests-808s-heartbreak/

https://djbooth.net/features/2017-01-05-defending-a-masterpiece-808s-heartbreak

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