Tuesday 29 May 2007

A Music Video Shoot

Cazart! Off to fair Dublinia, our nation's capital, to work on a music video... Short notice. Interesting times. Worthwhile vibrations. AllStarCharge is the band. "Wait" is the song. Read the script. Johnny is the main character's moniker, and it is a variation of mine own. Spooky.


Monday 28 May 2007

Sufjan Stevens On A Roof

You really have to love La Blogotheque. Their "Un Concert A Emporter" series is just absolute top notch, and they recently honoured their 50th show by presenting 30 minutes worth of music and video gathered at April's MusicNOW Festival in Cincinnati. The pick of the bunch though is this Sufjan performance; a solo banjo rendition of "The Lakes Of Canada", an Innocence Mission cover from their 1999 album Birds Of My Neighboorhood. The warmth of Sufjan's vocal delivery and careful banjo play make a nonsense of the harsh winds that blow atop the roof. Just lovely.

#50.2 - Sufjan Stevens (MusicNow) - The lakes of Canada
Uploaded by lablogotheque

Creation Museum

It is exactly what it says on the tin. A museum designed and opened, for and by Creationists... A sneak peek photographic tour of the museum has made it online. Allow The New(ish) Journalism to share some of the highlights with you and give you the link to the tour itself. Over $10 million worth of exhibits, purpose built to debunk evolotionary theory.

I know I should mock, but really, the pictures themselves do more to that end than mere sarcasm ever could.

Sunday 27 May 2007

Tehran... Meet Fox News.

Room# 101. Hypocrisy For Dummies. Courtesy of Fox News.

On May 16th in an interview with Fox News host Neil Cavuto, John Bolton, former US Ambassador to the UN, left viewers in no doubt that he supports a military strike on Iran. The justifications for such an action as Bolton sees them? Iran's "extensive political and military interference in Iraq" and the Iranian administration's alleged intention to develop a nuclear weapon... Please, allow common sense a retort Mr Bolton. On the charge of interference, exactly what are the US Army doing in Iraq at the moment? Secondly, one possible nuke as opposed to 5,735 active or operational US nuclear warheads out of a total arsenal of 9,960 intact warheads? (Statistic located on wikipedia, link below.)

The quote of the clip? "If the Europeans, the Russians, or the Chinese can't be brought along, we'll have to do the job ourselves." Brought along? Bouncing baby Jesus on a rusty trampoline... Who are these people? What are these people? Furthermore, what kind of deviant fucknut is actually informed by Fox News?

The State Of Mantua

Another Irish summer festival, and this one might certainly be worth a gander. The State Of Mantua Music & Arts Festival is taking place in the perhaps unlikely surroundings of Ballaghadereen, Co. Roscommon, 13 - 14th July.

On the Main Stage will be Sultans Of Ping, 65 Days Of Static, Super Extra Bonus Party, Jinx Lennon, The Cedars and mercurial reggae legends The Skatalites. On the Reggae Stage will be, well, reggae. There will be an Alphabet Set Stage aiming to blend the best of the Irish scene with the unknown and exciting from across the globe, with the emphasis being on party vibes. There will be a Project Tent with audio/visual presentations, graffiti and performance pieces. There will a Cinema, run in association with Future Shorts, the largest short film network in Europe, offering up a fascinating collection of the eclectic and electric. Oh, and there will be a few art installations scattered about the joint too.

Best of all? Tickets are only €50 for the weekend. And if you want to do it on the cheap you can volunteer to work for the weekend... Pay for your ticket, do 10 hours work at the festival over two days, and then get the ticket price fully refunded. Not bad. Not bad at all.

Beth Rowley

I got it bad and that ain't good... As the weekend's festivities ground to their inevitable end, solace was sought and solace was indeed found, if only momentarily. Pain has been eased by a voice most angelic, the voice of Bristol lass Beth Rowley. Saturated in melancholy, consumed by the blues, entirely transcendent; this lady is a special talent who deserves to be heard. Whilst perhaps not the finished article in terms of musical output, there are glimpses of greatness nonetheless.
Be sure and listen to her rendition of "Nobody's Fault But Mine". Glorious.
EDIT - Just browsed youtube and found this clip of Ms Rowley singing "Nobody's Fault But Mine" at the Regal Room in London, Jan 2007. Enjoy.

Saturday 26 May 2007

Army Strong

The new US Army recruitment TV advert. Quite possibly one of the funniest things The New(ish) Journalism has seen in many a while... A thesaurus anybody?

Fair play to the lads at Mongrel for uploading this fine piece of hayseed dixie drivel (www.mongrel.ie)

Donkey Kong As Metaphor?

The following clip is of a glitch in the timeless Donkey Kong Country for the SNES. A metaphor perhaps for the victory of The League Of Bertie and its connotations for Ireland? Possibly... Only if you are a real cynic.


A man of 25 years or so stares into the mirror. His face, the fervent amalgamation of wonder and denial that only a heartfelt pill binge can mould. Enamel scrapes off enamel, dragging with it chunks of ambition, dreams long since dormant. The soul ground into oblivion. Consumed by a temporary and enjoyable intensity that will soon be replaced by callous emptiness. Nothing shall remain in the morning... He rushes outside to dance to James Brown. Get up offa that thing...
Last night as The New(ish) Journalism waited in the awkward societal limbo that is the gents toilets in a pub when all the urinals and cubicles are in use, reverberations began to coarse. Reverberations regarding consequences. Consequences regarding elections... Surrounded by piss-stained Levis, sweat-pitted Ben Sherman, designer stubble, the occasional foreigner and full on scumbags, he momentarily glimpsed the true future of Ireland. And it frightened him.
Come back McDowell! All is forgiven! Not for me this Ireland of youthful revelry, integration and sporadic over indulgence... Come back McDowell and we shall both embrace an Ireland free of grafitti, free of niteclubs, free of immigration, free of the proletariat... Come back McDowell and we shall frolic together through perfectly regimented meadows, and return to Dublin South East to fumble through our greasy tills. Let us gape and guffaw as they overflow, funding our glorious police state. I love Ireland too!

Good riddance. Tosser.


Michael Moore's SiCKO. Another Michael Moore film. Another heavy handed polemic against the abuses of Bush & Co. The subject of Moore's ire this time? The health care system in America. While Moore is certainly correct to point out the many flaws in said system, his methodologies in doing so are nauseating. This can not be labelled documentary. Moore once again casts himself as the crusading hero of the piece, completely engulfing the centre stage. "Show gratitude yon peasantry as Sir Michael Moore rides in on his trusty silver steed!" Fictional devices anyone? For such a reknowned filmmaker Moore seems to show no respect for his form, no inclination of the responsibility of a documentarian to present a balanced argument. He is malicious with his edits. Once again Moore presents his audiences with gratuituously stylised and patronising diatribe - the Charlton Heston baiting at the end of Bowling For Columbine, the heavy metal montages of Fahrenheit 911, mothers weeping directly into the camera as they roll up the American flag and take it in from the lawn forever...
One of the facts Moore reveals in the film to shock and repulse his viewer is that the US is 37th in the world in terms of health care, one place above Slovenia. Above Slovenia! Come on Americans, this is clearly a disgusting insult... The fucking arrogance of such a statement.
Granted, Moore may be well-intentioned. He may also be an egotistical opportunist. But for a documentarian there are inumerable other ways to tackle social issues and dilemmas, each one more worthwhile and considered than this.

Friday 25 May 2007

Goebbels Vs Gormley - Round 2

The self-satisfied arrogance of Michael 'Goebbels' McDowell. The excessive bullying of opposition candidates. Ney, but has it all come undone? After the third count in Dublin South-East he is over 1,000 votes behind John Gormley. FF Transfers may yet save him but he is teetering on the precipice, by a hangnail.

What was it Michael said to Gormley at the now infamous lampost fiasco? "Now, you'll be glad to know, you're out of the picture John."

Ouch. Very ouch.

EDIT - "Now, you'll be glad to know, you're out of the picture John." A fitting epitaph.

Reasons To Be Cheerful About The Possible Stomping Of Honest Enda & Friends

As the first counts come in from across the country it seems like The League Of Bertie is in a very strong position, with many transfers left to play. A FF majority could even be a possibility with the aging geeks seeping out in their droves yesterday. Rock The Vote TM? Ahem... If the possibility of another five years of Bertie depresses you then read the following list posted on www.irishelections.com by politicalthicko:
For those hoping for a change in government, something quite fashionable in other democracies, there are still many reasons to be cheerful.

Here’s my top 10

1 – PDs wiped out.

2 – Fianna Fail can’t survive the death of the sun.

So within 4 billion years we can expect a change of government. Unfortunately the human race won’t exist, but this will come as a relief to the other intelligent races in the universe.

3 – PDs wiped out.

4 – We won’t have to listen to Enda talking about babies getting rashes in the middle of the night anymore.

5 – PDs wiped out.

6 – Our Taoiseach up in front of the Mahon tribunal.

A proud moment for us all.

7 – PDs wiped out.

8 – Willie O’Dea’s moustache to be granted Grade 1 monument status.

9 - PDs wiped out.

10 – Mary Lou can continue to represent us with intelligence, competence and insight in Europe. Because that means she’ll be outside the country. Hurray!


How To Smoke A Joint

Drugs are bad and illegal. However, if you feel the need to somehow understand the socially aberrant impulses of drug abusers, some of whom you may even know, check out this informative clip from the movie Taking Off. It tells the viewer how to smoke a "joint". Dear Jesus, the twisted immorality of it all.

So, next government of Ireland, what do you propose to do about this?

Thursday 24 May 2007

Los Campesinos - "You! Me! Dancing!"

The New(ish) Journalism can just not get enough of this track recently. Be it on youtube or on his Creative Zen (ipods, meh). "You! Me! Dancing!" is the song. Studious Welsh purveyors of pop Los Campesinos are the band. Unbelievable video. Thought the happy should be shared on this the day of my country's election...

Strike A Pose!

Blonde Redhead's "Top Ranking". The song is one of the more unremarkable ones from recent album 23, but the video is certainly interesting. Director Mike Mills' visual conceit is simple: one pose per second of the song's duration. What is impressive about this video is not the anatomical dexterity of the cute brunette on display, but the video's disjointed, almost unsettling aesthetic. A curious montage that feels almost like a slideshow. Thrifty charm. "Obvious" invention. Her eyes...

Subtlety is not something that megaproducer Timbaland would be known for. Perhaps he should take a leaf from the Mill's book above. Check out his video for new single "Throw It On Me" (featuring The Hives) below. Bling meets pulp fiction in a shameless pastiche of Robert Rodriguez's Sin City: all skyhigh wrestling rings, voluptuous WWE divas, and gratuituous pre-watershed groping. Shame it all comes across like Ghetto Benny Hill. Derivative and meandering nonsense. And that goes for the song too. Scuzzy garage guitar riffs and hip hop beats? You don't say. How groundbreaking.


The scene was being set beautifully. Shafts of morning light danced flirtatiously on the brow of The New(ish) Journalism, as he dozed lazily on the couch, his preemptive Nescafé rendered obsolete. Yet he did not care. Tranquil reverberations. But it was not to last...

Anna Prior, the Sinn Féin candidate for Clare, decided that she must interrupt the peace of all and sundry as she drove around blaring the following mantra from a megaphone: "Vote Anna Prior! A Vote for Sinn Féin Is A Vote For Change!" Desperation setting in on the morning of the event? On hearing this racket, The New(ish) Journalism's dog duly went apeshit, barking and growling ferociously, only calming down five minutes after the substantial din subsided.

Perhaps he had read Sinn Féin's ludicrous financial policies? Ooh, burn.

Election Time Tomorrow... Time To Make A Decision.

Wednesday 23 May 2007

Pippo Inzaghi! Superstar! Well...

"There was Turkish Delight for Liverpool in Istanbul in 2005, but tonight there is only Greek tragedy... Stop laughing Eamon!"

Above lies a verbatim quote from good ould Bill O' Herlihy after the match on RTE this evening. Shite pun. Dunphy laughing sarcastically. Desperate match. However, Liverpool deserve serious credit for the enormous effort they gave. The aimless bluster of Pennant and Kuyt et al was at least honest until tiredness and a blaringly obvious chasm in class began to show. In some areas of their team, not most. On the other hand, Milan deserve credit for the clinical way in which they took the win whilst also playing quite terribly. Kaka is imperious, without equal at the moment in world football. Inzaghi is a freakish goal poaching anomaly. Maldini is immortal. Well, really old... Liverpool? Slightly unlucky to lose, although they were not helped by their own inadequacies during the game. AC Milan? Slightly lucky to win, but I mean come on, they're Italian!
So that's another season then. Sigh. Perhaps Benitez should think about building a team around Zenden next season? Sorry, could not resist...

Tuesday 22 May 2007

God Bless America!

The Tennessee Highway Patrol has suspended a trooper who allegedly received a sexual favour from a porn star and recorded the act on a camera taken from his state cruiser in return for ignoring her possession of illegal painkillers. How was the trooper rumbled? Barbie Cummings - the star's delightful stage moniker - graphically reported the incident on her official blog.

A heartwarming story. It really is.

Observer Music Monthly & Electric Picnic

Published in the current Observer Music Monthly is a list of 25 acts you must see this summer. Whilst The New(ish) Journalism has always had a problem with such aggressive language when hyping bands - you should see them, "must" has fascistic connotations of death threats and kidnappings - he was glad to discover that no fewer than SIX of these 25 are playing at Electric Picnic. And he would agree with most of them (just cannot get excited about Albarn's latest vanity project). They are as follows:

No. 2: The Good, The Bad & The Queen
No. 3: The Jesus & Mary Chain
No. 9: Beastie Boys
No. 10: Bonde Do Role
No. 18: The Chemical Brothers
No. 20: Bjork


Quite excited about the live proposition of Bonde Do Role. The baile funksters look set to be the indie kid's irony of choice this year, but the twisted pop quality of their tunes and the mania of their live shows could suggest a longevity not normally associated with a band so terribly "now". Yet even if they do fizzle out quickly, it is all an enjoyable strangeness. Embrace it. Quality videos too... Check out the video to "Solta O Frango". A human cockfight. But of course.

A Bit Harsh?

Nobody can genuinely deny it, regardless of political persuasion. Honest Enda was hammered in the debate last week, albeit by a superior political animal, not necessarily a superior candidate. Surely the dramatic swing in the recent opinion polls is retribution enough for the obstinate naivety of The Contract? This picture is just mean, however funny.


The Shiznit

Sample from Your Round, an anthology series from the creators or The Shiznit. The Shiznit is in full colour and this is in black and white, but dammit I thought it was funny, as is The Shiznit... What an inane caption.

During The New(ish) Journalism's weekende de fun in Dublin he picked up a copy of a rather sweet free Irish comic magazine called The Shiznit. According to the blurbings of the comic's creator Bob Byrne, the aim of the magazine is to "kickstart an indigenous comics industry".

Allow The New(ish) Journalism a timely confession. He is nothing more than a fairweather comic book fan, at best. At this stage every comic book he has ever read has been adapted into a mediocre Hollywood actioner. And he is not really bothered by any of the oft and alleged blasphemy of their Hollywoodisation. Except Batman & Robin. That fucking hurt. Yet even one as indifferent as he must applaud The Shiznit's intentions and wish it well on its noble quest. Why so? Cynical, hilarious, sweet and depressing, this comic really is a good read. Pick a copy up if you can. After all... it is free.

If you live outside Dublin (Crow Corner Comics is their main depot), Galway, Cork or Belfast this may prove a challenge, but you can contact the good Clamnuts Comix people at their website and they will endeavour to provide you with an issue or two.

Also, props to fellow Ennis man Declan Shalvey on his constant contribution to The Shiznit; the man a talented artist since the halcyon days of secondary school. Fly the flag brother. Drop it not in the stagnant puddles of The Whest, but hold it aloft in the liberating gales of The Pale. Or something.

Monday 21 May 2007

The Weekend Ends Here

The New(ish) Journalism would most certainly recommend the following course of action if the opportunity ever arises:

Singing Neil Young's "Old Man" with a group of friends in a high spec speedboat hurtling across the waves of Dublin Bay.

It has been an odd few days.

Thursday 17 May 2007

"Song 2". Beatboxed.

This shall be the final post in what has been a somewhat prolific day for The New(ish) Journalism. Some guys decided it would be a worthwhile enterprise to beatbox and sing a cappella over the muted video of Blur's "Song 2". And then record it. Every drum beat, every cymbal, every chord, every vocal, straight from their mouths.
Clever deconstruction of a 90s pop classic or time that really should have been spent more constructively? Bloody random stuff either way.


Nice sentiment. Nice t-shirt.

Dan Deacon - "Crystal Cat"

Wow. Below lies the video for Dan Deacon's "Crystal Cat". The New(ish) Journalism is conflicted. Should he be impressed by the maximalist intensity of the tune (and the video)? Or should he dismiss it as excessive nonsense, the consequence of ironic geek hipsterism pushing the envelope just out of reach? Yup... Conflicted. Genuinely. Thoughts?

Dan Deacon is friends with Liam Lynch. Remember him? "This is my United States of..." Whatever.

The Results Of A Browse - A Musical Interlude

Some new musical video treats I have discovered over the last day:

First up, the video for "Mistaken For Strangers", the first single from The National's upcoming album Boxer. Their previous longplayer Alligator is easily one of my favourite albums of the last year or two and it seems the formula has survived intact: sweeping, anthemic rock saved from excess by a literate and knowing dexterity of lyrics and composition. The video mirrors the song's theme of the specifically urban paradox of simultaneous loneliness and claustrophobia. As he bounces alone on his bed we simply wish we could bounce by his side. Gorgeous.

Next up, a new version of Low's "Hatchet". The Optimimi Version to be exact. The song now vocalised by only Mimi Parker over lo-fi scratchy beats that could not be more befitting, and beguiling. Animated by Scott Bateman, this video is... cool. Apologies but my adjective bank runneth dry. Watch and judge.

Posting of the next video is rampant throughout the Irish blogosphere. Thought I should join in, in case you might miss it. It is the rather kick arse "Lend Me Your Face" by Irish band Fight Like Apes, from the fantasically titled upcoming album How Am I Supposed To Kill You If You Have All The Guns? Not sure if the band would appreciate the analogy, but Karen O meets The Chalets on a mescaline binge? An ode to the peculiar joy of necessary violence.

Ad Philosophy

Some lady who emailed the Ray D'Arcy show on Today FM today proposed the following conundrum. And I paraphrase:
  • How is it that advertisements on television (and of course in other media) often proclaim their products to be new and improved? Surely if the product is indeed new, it can not possibly be improved as it has no precursor. With its being new you see. And vice versa. If it is indeed an improved product, it can not possibly be new. With its prior existance as a product that required improvement you see.

Does she have a point? With this insight has she delved right through to the core ideological inconsistencies that permeate today's increasingly secular and silicone world? Or is she just being anal and weird? Such are the complexities of rhetoric I suppose.

Perhaps The New(ish) Journalism should lay down the foundations for a discourse on the matter. Master semiotician and social theorist Roland Barthes once had this to say about the heavy emphasis on The New in modern society:

"The bastard form of mass culture is humiliated repetition... always new books, new programs, new films, news items, but always the same meaning."

Email lady? A retort?

Tuesday 15 May 2007


The New(ish) Journalism is orginally from Ennis. Two interesting things about Ennis in terms of the General Election:
  • Firstly, there is currently a substantial rumour - however without fire, no smoke - circulating the town that a certain candidate in the constituency may have trifled towards a wee faux pas. Canvassing in the square of the town this week, the candidate - an affiliate of either The League Of Bertie or Honest Enda, can not state categorically which party here, libel and what not, you never know - responded thusly to a child who asked for a bottle of water: "Sure, you don't even have a vote!" He/she then walked on, entourage in tow. No bottle of water given. Wysteria Lane Ennis ain't, but tongues are wagging nonetheless. Caustic vibrations... Wysteria Lane? Really. What a camp reference.
  • Secondly, there is not one election poster put up in the town of Ennis. Not one. Ennis Urban District Council decreed that these election posters were to be banned from the streets on the grounds of "visual pollution"... Huzzah! A truly brilliant idea. The democratic process is wonderful and all, but there is only so many "Bertie's Team" shyster mug shots and Honest Enda plea bargains that a man can take as he wanders the streets. Ennis: for once an oasis for the cynic.

However as soon as you drive outside of the jurisdiction of the urban council, the posters inevitably resurface. Their naffly Orwellian grip reapplied, albeit with somewhat arthritic fingers. It is perhaps ironic that as you leave Ennis for the direction of Galway via the bypass slip road there is one candidate whose poster appears more than others, Brian Meaney's... The Green Party candidate!

I give up.

Scientology Explained. Maybe.

Tom Cruise. Oprah's couch. Something about childbirth and painkillers. John Travolta. Planes, Chins, and Battlefield Earth. Etc... We have all heard about scientology. However, BBC News Panorama's insight into the religion - "Scientology & Me", which aired last night, May 14th - is certainly worth a look. Fascinating television, even if reporter Sweeney's methodologies can sometimes leave a sour taste... The show is broken into three clips below. Pesky youtube format.
EDIT: The second clip below overlaps with the 1st and 3rd clips and is also of poorer quality because the clip originally uploaded is no longer available. Changes were needed.

Part 1 of 3.

Part 2 of 3.

Part 3 of 3.

If however you are lazy, in a hurry, not that interested, or just fancy a quick incredulous giggle, check out the classic South Park clip below. It is the episode that Isaac Hayes threw a bit of a Preston over. Preston? Chantelle? No? Nothing at all? Celebrity Love Jungle, or something. Nope?

Monday 14 May 2007

Subtle & I

Nice one. Not only does newbie The New(ish) Journalism get a mention as a worthwhile blog on Nialler9 (www.nialler9.com/blog/) - cheers Niall by the way - but he finds out in the very same post that Subtle are playing Crawdaddy this coming Friday, May 18th. Vital information that somehow escaped the meagre fool until now. For penance... The shame.

I digress. Subtle's For Hero: For Fool is quite simply a stunning album, easily one of the best of last year. Quixotic genre-straddling "hip-hop" is what is on offer, and according to the band themselves it is in the live arena where their songscapes become fully moulded, fully realised. This is their first ever Irish gig, so it should be a cracker. They are ably supported by Super Extra Bonus Party, an Irish band of whom I have only recently become aware. Damn good though.

Tickets €16. From WAV, Road Records & City Discs.

Here's some live footage of both [Subtle vid is more about Dose's bantering skills and theatricality, "Drone Rock" = Tune]:

Subtle: Midas Gutz, Not sure where and when.

Super Extra Bonus Party: Drone Rock, Riverbank Theatre, April 12th 2007.


How To Play The Jew's Harp

As The New(ish) Journalism walked the streets of Galway over the weekend just past, he noticed clutches of hippie buskers enthralling tourists/being largely ignored as they played the jew's harp. In skilled hands this instrument is capable of cleverly layered tone and melody. In most hands and mouths however, it is cruel and comedic aural torture. Therefore, just in case these recent buskers are signifying the latest summer craze (quite possible too in Galway), here is a brief tutorial on how to play the jew's harp (knomus); presented by the frontman of Siberian folk group Bugotak.

On the subject of Bugotak, you should really check out their fascinating - actually not sure what adjective does it justice - Siberian folk cover of The Beatles' "Come Together", entitled "Kon' Togethy". Listen to it, or download it for free at:


Now to find a tutorial video on Siberian throat singing and beat these hippies at their own game...

Like Plagiaristic Scraps Of Jazz Mags...

Fujiya & Miyagi's "Ankle Injuries". Cracking band. Cracking tune. Below lies the video for said tune. Aesthetically bang on, and not without its charm. Yet for some inexplicable reason my mind wanders toward Michel Gondry, Jack & Meg, and Lego. Odd.
What's that? "Johnny says it's fine, he don't consider it cheating." Cool. Ignore the preceding. Excuse the hungover cynicism. And enjoy.


Improvised jumpstyle tutorials at ATMs... Incomprehension of the inability of someone to totally adore The Yeah Yeah Yeah Song... Aim for mock revulsion, come across as a dick... Juggling footballs in the dark in the kitchens of friends... "Kid Koala, is he Australian?"... Positive feedback on the short film I wrote, directed, produced... Validation always tastes sweeter with Jagermeister... Auteuristic endeavours such as this can never succumb to the plebianism of Youtube, especially not after Jager number shhhmensleven... The IT Crowd... Number Busy... An Erol Alkan mix of Klaxon's "Golden Scans" that melts the enfeebled minds of techno scuzz collective... "I want to turn all of your dancefloors into a burning inferno of ba, ba, ba!"... Wasn't that earlier?... Swedish people and the laissez faire of geek-chic-nous... A chance encounter with an ex... It ended well but the pleasantness is forced nonetheless... "Maybe I'll check out that house party she mentioned she was going to later?"... Should retrospective inner monologues be put in quotations... "?"... Number Busy... Number Busy... Number Busy... Number Busy...
As The New(ish) Journalism sits on the bus back home, he wants to weep uncontrollably. Not out of hungover regret: the cheapest point on the spectrum of human emotive range. God no. Truth be told, the preceding night's events ran with a uniform, if oddly Joyceian, brilliance. Erol Alkan. Sublime... No. This pain is borne out of the discomfort of the present:

The New(ish) Journalism sits on his outside seat, elbow at the fickle mercy of The Aisle. He is lodged in beside a large, profusely sweaty male 20 something who spends his time either studiously rubbing his copy of Loaded, or his own crotch. Behind this happy duo, at the "back of the bus", a clatter of scobes (is that the right pluralism?) disgust and frighten their fellow passengers with aberrant relish. Fresh spittle runs down the back of the neck of a petrified young American woman - her name is Alice, from Idaho, on holidays, with Julie, who is situated rigidly in the seat beside her. Elsewhere, tears roll freely down the face of a scared young girl who cannot sit beside her mother due to the lack of free seats on the bus. The young girl is told to "cop the fuck on" by a pregnant female of the species at the back. The fresh black eye she sports cannot provide an excuse, or hide the emptiness within. The New(ish) Journalism offers to swap seats so the little girl can at least sit directly in front of her mother... He does so. For his trouble he is called an "arse bandit" and gets hit across the back of the head with a handle ripped from the back of the bus, thrown with intent. Joanna Newsom serenades him from the glorious realm of Ys, as he fights valiantly for his patience. He eventually wins.

He = Me above. My literary style is nothing if not fitfully consistent folks.

Consequences? I ask you.

P.S. It's a text from the ex... The New(ish) Journalism Busy...

Saturday 12 May 2007

Street Fighter 2! Fight!

I could go on about the iconoclastic ingenuity of the clip, or the subtle re-imagining of childhood memory at play. But I won't. This is just damn funny. Cheerios were spat across the monitor, and in great numbers. Fair play to the lads involved, and Soundtracksforthem for posting the link to it a while back. (www.soundtracksforthem.blogspot.com)

Thought(s) For The Day

As your weekend hits full tilt, permit The New(ish) Journalism to pervade the abundant happiness of it all with these two dollops of wisdom...
Firstly, a quote from Marcus Cicero, a Roman orator and lawyer of roughly 2000 years past, containing within a sentiment that is all too infrequently adhered to by the politicians of the present. Consider its implications in a global political climate dominated by the Neo-Con Crusades of Dubya Et Al and the pesky objection of the Natives... Insurgents, sorry, Insurgents. Where are my manners? Oh yes, the quote:
"Freedom is participation in power."
Secondly, one from Bill Hicks, which may or may not be related. You decide.
"What do atheists scream when they come?"
Thank you. Now advance my friends and recklessly embrace the hedonism of it all. Or Tubridy Tonight. Whichever you prefer. For The New(ish) Journalism, an unfinished romance with a quart of Jamesons, pear Kopperberg, Suburban Kids With Biblical Names and the maximalist joy of Erol Alkan awaits. Consequences will surely follow, but are unimportant in the meanwhile.

Friday 11 May 2007

The New(ish) Journalism Gets A New Look

After forensic examination of all the factors in play with a team of buzz word wielding sociopaths (marketing professionals), it was decided that the place needed a new look. Key demographics would seem to approve. Good numbers. Requisites are shifting. Positive feedback. Growth markets dependent on fresh aesthetics. The New(ish) Journalism is a team player.
Therefore, it is now only a matter of time before The New(ish) Journalism is huge in Japan, and Nascar. Oh yes.


Turntablism: At times it can be accused of being slightly elitist. Its practitioners sometimes more concerned with the aesthetic intricacies of spinning than the good times of the paid-up folks in front of the decks. Mash-ups: At their ubiquitous best, 2manydjs. At their purile worst, a Bootylicious Kurt Cobain or a Hard To Explain Christina Aguilera. "Ooh, look at my iconoclastic cross referencing of the dichotomous worlds of pop and indie/grunge. It's all so ironic." Actually, it is all so unimaginative and manipulative.
Well not to worry folks, because A-Trak is really rather ingenious at both. Deft turntablistic nous and an unerring ear for a clever mash-up/bootleg are this guy's weapons of choice. One just needs to listen to his recent release Dirty South Dance for verification. Crunk meets electro scuzz/techno could seem a tired approach to the mash-up by now, but in the skilled hands of A-Trak it a revelatory one. Dirty South Dance bumps and grinds in all the right places, possessing within beat juggling and a cappella manipulation of the highest standard... Yung Joc's smooth crunkite drawl is slowed down and spread lasciviously over Soulwax's anthemic "E-Talking (Nite Version)". Rich Boy's "Throw Some D's" meets a tasty remix of Daft Punk's "Prime Time Of Your Life". M.I.A indifferently mumbles through "XR2" over the cinematic genius of Georgio Moroder's synths. Proceedings are brought to a climactic close when a mix of Timbaland's "My Love" mutates into an eruption of breakbeat hardcore lunacy, before settling back into the schmoovness once more.
(Outside of his album, his remix of Architecture In Helsinki's "Heart It Races" should really be checked out on his myspace. www.myspace.com/djatrak)
Live, A-Trak is the man to get the good times started. He brings turntablism back to the party rockin', roof raisin' intentions of its conception. Good thing then that he is confirmed for the Sunday of Electric Picnic. Certainly a gig not to be missed that weekend. Need a sampler of his skills... Check out this youtube-y vid (crap picture, but the audio is fine).

Thursday 10 May 2007

Mr. Congeniality?

The New(ish) Journalism feels he sometimes picks on The League Of Bertie. An armistice for the Disciples of Drumcondra then perhaps... "Why so" the disbelieving hordes roar in unison? Just look at what they are up against folks. The perfect political animal. A glorious specimen, agigated and ready to pounce. Honest Enda. Grrr.

"Thunderbirds are go!" Oh yeah.

Wednesday 9 May 2007

Bad Day At Work? A Musical Interlude.

Having a bad day at work? The job getting you down? Allow The New(ish) Journalism to offer you some brief musical respite.
First up, the band for whom genre is not a concern, Brazilian baile-funk-powerpop-jockrock weirdsters Bonde Do Role with their new single "Office Boy": a bouncy Portuguese invective toward one of the shittiest jobs in Brazil, that of lowly office boy. The video is a lesson in the possibilities of self-aware nonsense, and was surely as cheap as chips to make. Wince at the soulless drones who populate its background, secure in the knowledge that your life is so much more relevant than theirs. This is not yours... Fuck off back to retirement Right Said Fred, you are now more redundant than ever. Re-releases or no.

Next up, Grizzly Bear walk the streets of Paris, treating all and sundry to a gloriously realised a cappella version of their song "Knife". An old one, but I mean only to make you smile. Thankfully, a beating heart is the only prerequisite for smiling at this.

I Have Seen The Light!

Thank you Jee-sus for I have seen the light! Total renumeration of the soul is almost complete. Let the above diagram be but a token spirit guide. Eternal salvation is only one click of your mouse away folks. Follow the link below! Testify!


IMPORTANT DISCLAIMER: Magnificent levels of irony were utilised in the above sentences. Some people terrify me.

The Encyclopedia Of Life

In an undertaking of some magnitude, scientists are planning to compile everything they know about the Earth's 1.8 million species and place this information on a website entitled The Encyclopedia Of Life; a website that will be open to everyone.

The site's content shall include species descriptions, pictures, maps, videos, sounds, sightings by amateurs, and links to entire genomes and scientific journal papers. The first pages of the project are to be shown today in Washington DC. Many of the world's leading institutions will be involved in the project. It is thought it will take up to 10 years to complete it.
I bet Noah wished he had broadband back in the day...


Tuesday 8 May 2007

Mike Gravel. Again.

If you are American and Gravel wins the Democratic presidential nomination, please vote for this man. Here Gravel talks to CNN and offers some insight into his remarkable performance at the recent MSNBC debate. The man looks less and less like a mere spoiler candidate with every passing airing he receives.

Keep watching until the end... Significant cages have been rattled it would seem.

Sunday 6 May 2007

Gripped By General Election "Fever"

The New(ish) Journalism peruses the Sundays. Broken promises this, prosperity that. The docile sincerity of Enda Kenny spits and coughs against the deviant malignancy of The League of Bertie. Who cares anymore? The maturity of the SSIAs shall out.

As The New(ish) Journalism prepares himself for the night of reckless degeneracy that an Irish bank holiday demands, a certain poem springs to mind. An eagerness to share it with you must be seized upon before Corona quenchs its flame. The zest of the lime shall prevail. Oh yes.

Read on if at times the ceasless flip-floping of election time can just seem too much...

Be Angry At The Sun

That public men publish falsehoods
Is nothing new. That America must accept
Like the historical republics corruption and empire
Has been known for years.

Be angry at the sun for setting
If these things anger you. Watch the wheel slope
and turn,
They are all bound on the wheel, these people,
those warriors.
This republic, Europe, Asia.

Observe them gesticulating,
Observe them going down. The gang serves lies,
the passionate
Man plays his part; the cold passion for truth
Hunts in no pack.

You are not Catullus, you know,
To lampoon these crude sketches of Caesar. You
are far
From Dante's feet, but even farther from his dirty
Political hatreds.

Let boys want pleasure, and men
Struggle for power, and women perhaps for fame,
And the servile to serve a Leader and the dupes
to be duped.
Yours is not theirs.

- Robinson Jeffers.

Saturday 5 May 2007

Sunderland FC & Irish Cricket.

Sunderland Football Club, Roy Keane, Niall Quinn, and the various nouveau celebrities of the Irish Cricket Team. I salute thee on your relatively moderate levels of success thus far. I also genuinely wish you all the best of luck in the future. Pride is deserved. Decorum advisable, and so far applied.
General public of Ireland. Explain the following... Chartered Aer Arann flights to Newcastle? Roy Keane now being unable to fart without it making the Irish Examiner? Cricket pitches being proposed for Tallaght and Shannon? Roysh on man, loike. Totally.
Perspective? Thou be a fickle mistress.
The bandwagon explodes into the distance in a cloud of dust. The New(ish) Journalism is silenced by a mindless cacophony of hooting and hollering... Mexican waves engulf the Stadium of Light... Junkets empty the Golden Vale of shareholders and syndicates, for these are the days of New Rome, rejoicing in a maelstrom of mid-table mediocrity (at best)... Cricket bats are plentiful amongst the young of Tallaght... All the while, The New(ish) Journalism stands idly by, his bodhrán in hand. A meek Banner Roar teases up from his toes. "We're no longer the whipping boys of Munster." A wry smile crosses his face. He turns his back on the cloud, now a mere speck on the horizon.

"Grindhouse"... A Preemptive Quibble.

Tarantino and Rodriguez's "Grindhouse" Official Poster: Meh.

Ok. We should all be already aware of "Grindhouse", Quentin Tarantino and Robert Rodriguez's lusty homage to the B-film schlock that helped inspire them so. Zombies, motorcycle gangs, big guns, and bigger breasts... Cheaply made and cheaply exploitative pyrotechnic nonsense, but dammit if it wasn't a helluva lot of fun. And this directoring duo wish it to be once more. They offer up unto their audiences their ultimate B-movie experience, loaded with visceral intensity and inevitable directorial flair. Hell, it is even a double bill feature; Tarantino's "Death Proof" and Rodriguez's "Planet Terror". Oh, the novel self-reflexivity of it all.

However, Tarantino and Rodriguez seem to have missed a serious point in terms of this blatant homage business. "Grindhouse"'s budget was $53 million dollars. Its production lasted in excess of 18 months. Its cast, a reservoir of A-listers. Bruce Willis, Kurt Russel, Nicholas Cage, to name but a trio.

Roger Corman would drown in a pool of his homemade puke effects. $53 million? $53,000 might be more appropriate. Two years? Try a fortnight. These were the budgets and schedules of the B-movies that Tarantino et al ape here with such grotesque reverence. They were made quickly, to be distributed quickly, to make as quick a buck as possible. Producers and directors operated within the dregs of genre trash, and were fully aware of this. Classics did rise up from this formulaic quagmire, but it still happened on the cheap. Intelligence and wit were the weapons of George A Romero. Can anyone name his little known zombie trilogy? Anyone?

This is not to say that "Grindhouse" will not prove to be effective entertainment. (It of course yet to be released in Ireland). It just rankles with this blogger that two informed cineastes such as Tarantino and Rodgriguez should be so self-indulgent, whatever the end result. "Grindhouse" is a grand guignol of budget. A $53m exercise in fanboy essayism. A vanity project perhaps more suited to Harvey Weinstein's Miramax than brother Bob's Dimension. Maybe Quentin and Robert would have been better off getting a few beers, a few smokes and going for a rummage through the 7 for $15 in their local Blockbuster...

Apologies for the cynicism, but $53m to ostensibly remake your favourite films. Seems wasteful does it not?


Thursday 3 May 2007

Sporadic Album Review #2: The Reminder - Feist

Gloriously meandering. Nonchalantly charming. Lushly tuneful. And these nuggets of praise are meant solely for the musical arrangements on display here. Arrangements that are at all times accompanied by a vocal breathy and emotive, haunting and heartwarming. That vocal belongs to Leslie Feist; 31-year old Canadian singer songwriter and often member of Broken Social Scene and By Divine Right. I am reviewing her latest album, The Reminder.

Quite simply, this is an extremely impressive album. Feist has always displayed a penchant for the willfully eclectic - at times sparse and displaced, at times gloriously upbeat (2005 single "Mushaboom") - but this impulse has been reigned in somewhat on The Reminder. Reigned in by an altogether more coherent and consistent aesthetic. The soundscape is still unequivocally Feist-ian, if you will, but it is one everybody can admire. It politely asserts on the listener, with every listen revealing another dexterous charm... Paean to a lover's regret "So Sorry". The shimmering alt. pop of "I Feel It All" and "1 2 3 4". The almost disco house insistence of "Sealion". The effortless epiphany of final track "How My Heart Behaves". Each as pleasurable as the other.

The Reminder is a joyous release. Feist offers us realisation of the therapy of nondescript memories, good or bad. Posed with a handclap and a smile. Your endless summer evenings deserve to be soundtracked thusly. Beautiful.
Rating: ****/5

Because I like you. Watch the video for "1 2 3 4" below.



Wednesday 2 May 2007

Fox News - Gay Rights Campaigner?

The Westboro Baptish Church. Finally, Phelps' brand of moronic deviancy truly has achieved the miraculous. One impassioned interview with spokesperson/daughter Shirley Phelps and the following happens...

Fox News = Pro Gay Rights.

Albeit occuring via a newsreader continuously and loudly quoting Scripture live on air. (Read that sentence once more and be sure to soak up every atom of its insanity.) But it is perversely impressive.

Watch the clip below... The horror.


Tuesday 1 May 2007

Suburban Kids With Biblical Names on a Mini Irish Tour

Suburban Kids With Biblical Names (Peter Gunnarsson & Johan Hedberg) come to our emerald shores this month for a most minscule of tours. They play but two dates. Firstly: Whelan's, Dublin, May 10th. Secondly: Roisin Dubh, Galway, May 12th.

Listen to their debut LP #3 and you will quickly understand that these lads have a certain ear for eclectic, rhythmic pop. Factor in the 200 or so shows they have played across Europe since their first gig in Sala, and what are we left with? Pleasantly detached indie rhetoric with an assortment of very bouncy, cool and breezy pop songs. Well worth checking out.

Oh, and admission to the Roisin Dubh gig is FREE. Doors 9pm.



International Battle Of The Bands # 2: Canada.

Two stalwarts of leftfield Canadian hip hop this time: Buck 65 and Kid Koala. Two seriously impressive videos. Two wildly dichotomous soundscapes and themes. Sinister Jollies versus Old-Timey Transcendence. Yet enough of this introductory jibber jabber, which do you prefer?

(a) Kennedy Killed The Hat - Buck 65.
(b) Basin Street Blues - Kid Koala.