Tag Archives: random stuff

Electricity Is So Mainstream

I started this post on the 12th of January, the day my electricity was re-connected after being cut off for 5 days. Things kinda didn’t go according to plan. On the first night it was off, I was in my room in the darkness and all I could think was I really need to hear some music, and there was something I came here to say afterwards, but didn’t quite manage to finish the post.

The first thing I need to say is that if you have contacted me about a review (and many have), please accept my apologies if I didn’t respond, and most particularly if I did and haven’t written anything yet. In some cases it may be too little too late, but I’m hoping I can still listen and write for them over time.

My life doesn’t suck, by the way, it’s just not particularly easy at the moment, and yes – as the opening of this post may indicate – it’s a business/finance thing, which is unrelated to this place but the one thing it’s affected is my capacity to listen to music and write about it the way I had been. I hope this makes sense to everyone out there, but before things got a little complicated for me in other areas of my life, when I listened to music, I went to where the music was….and when I came back, I brought “souveneirs” (just a fancy way of saying “blog posts”, really).  Right now, the difference is when I listen to music, it takes me home.

I miss the other way.

Anyway, I also want to say a very belated thank you to the awesome Arvel Hernandez (Endless Nest) and Evan Hydzik for making it possible for me acquire Fringe – it was worth the wait – such incredibly moving music – and I am blessed that others went out of their way to enable me to hear it.

So, back in January, the power was off, and on the first night (that sounds unintentionally biblical, but perhaps here follows revelations!), I craved just to hear at least one song, one note… I don’t have an MP3 player, by the way, all my audio devices are powered by mains electricity. Except, I remembered that just before I moved into this place, and was staying with my brother and that other hopeless yobbo, I bought an SD card for my phone so I could transfer photos to the computer, but I had saved one song to it.

Lucky for me, my phone was charged, and so for about 20 minutes I was in my room, in the dark, listening to Bloodhail by Have A Nice Life on my very tinny phone speaker.

It was a strange experience.

A very (very) long time ago, I was meant to write something about the solo music project by HANL’s Dan Barrett, Giles Corey. I didn’t obviously, but one thing I did do was buy this…

That’s a pendant bead (hence the drilled hole at the top), made from seraphinite. I bought it because it reminded me of Giles Corey, in essence, and I had planned to use it in a necklace or something (unfinished – surprise). It’s the tombstone shape, the dark shapes like hollowed skull eyes, the almost black/grey washed out colour, in part, but more importantly it’s the finer details. The feathered texture, the fractured lines within a solid stone, like calcified and imprisoned broken wings…it’s full of ghosts, some of them dark, some of them light. That’s what I saw, anyway.

And you know, when I was listening to Bloodhail that night, I realised that here on earth, unluss you’re buried in something¹, there is no such thing as pitch black.


1. Just to clarify, I don’t mean dead and in a casket, I mean unless you take the light of the world away from yourself, even in the darkest moments there is light from somewhere.


Something Kinda Strange, Fascinating and Cool


I'll tell you what it is as soon as I've figured out what it is

For a while now, I’ve been intermittently paying an interest to the music used in advertising – everything from the briefs sent to agents/musicians to articles on the goal of advertising (I bet you thought it was complicated. Turns out they’re trying to raise awareness > interest > money), and some good ol’ fashioned research by the way of watching television. Subverting tradition, however, by getting up to make myself a coffee and snack every time the program comes back on so I don’t miss any of the commercials.

The problem with this, aside from the fact that I have no idea what to do when infomercials come on, is that it often takes me months to go from the seed of an idea to having something I think is complete and cohesive enough to post. (When I’m actually tackling an issue where insight, research, a point and a conclusion is required, anyway). My drafts folder currently contains about a dozen half-finished articles of approximately 2000 words each that meander all over the place and don’t reach any conclusion, some begun six months ago.


We'll share one day, promise

It’s because I have this habit of allowing my point of view to be variable and concentric – I start out like Frodo on a great quest, covering vast areas of terrain, but unfortunately – just like he – I then take on the characteristics of  Gollum, coveting newly acquired information and secreting it back to my cave (that’s not a euphamism by the way, you should see this lair my landlord calls a “unit” – t’is a dark place indeed). I’d like to be able to say that after mulling over all my gathered things, at least in the end I emerge, blinking into the sun, with something resembling an original, informative article. But – surprise – I also have this habit of ending up in totally weird places that have nothing to do with where I started and maps of Middle Earth never seem to aid my navigation back.

So, anyway, music in advertising…  While I’m still tackling exactly where that’s going, I thought I’d share something kind of interesting that I stumbled across, as it doesn’t look like it’s going to fit in with any of the other topics I’ve been exploring at depth. Perhaps it may even be best to continue with these random, bite-sized pieces of (lets call them) “information”. At least it will keep me away from the fridge when something good is on, like Antiques Roadshow. (That’s not a joke, AR is awesome).

The following two clips contain exactly the same commercial, which was for tourism in Yarra Valley, Victoria back in 2004. First up is the original, using a song called Run, Rabbit, Run. (NB Yet another YT clip that can’t be played anywhere but on-site. Click here for the direct link).

I wonder what kind of impression that leaves most people with? Cheery? Playful? Inviting? A nice touch of romantic nostalgia? I’m quite sure that was the idea, and it probably achieves its goal well enough for most, but here’s what I think is a prime example of just how powerful a role the music used in a commercial plays (which is primarily a visual medium…obviously). The second take instead features music from the score to Donnie Darko.

Credit for the second edit goes to Bland Canyon writer, PetStarr.

I don’t actually have a point to close this with, other than (as exemplified above in paragraph 4) getting back to the point is as easy as using an ellipsis…¹



1. Hopefully it makes it easy to get away with not having one, too.


Theme Songs For Favourite Things – Smileys #1

Grandaddy – Nature Anthem


Favourite Multi-Purpose Smiley – Build Me Up…

That’s right, I have a thing for smileys. So much so,  that I can’t just have a favourite smiley, I have to break it down into smaller categories so that other favourites don’t miss out.

The truth is, I love these little guys, and both collect and use them relentlessly. Before my old computer gave up the ghost, I had amassed some 400 on my hard drive, and just a smidge under 200 had been uploaded to my Photobucket account so that I could find and use favourites at a moment’s notice. I will even admit I have spent a late night or two trawling the net for variations of my particular favourite, the elusive Ninja Smiley.

But first thing’s first.

That little dude puts a smile on my face every single time I see it. I would totally love to do that and could see myself spending a day doing so (ok, so maybe not a whole day. I have a yen to see real snow and activities – if I ever do – will include more than the above. Plus, I did once visit a  place here called Mt Thebarton Ice Arena, which was an indoor ice skating rink that also had a 120 metre man-made ski slope. In my attempt to ski said slope, after a 10 minute beginner lesson, I think I made it about two of those metres in an upright position, then tumbled the rest of the way down and got completely saturated, thusly also very cold. I stuck to tobogganing after that).

But I adore the way that smiley just never stops loving what it’s doing (play along with me here, I know it’s not real and that it’s just a few frames in a continuous loop). I love the look – ^_^ –  when he goes to jump in, and the look – >_> – after he gets up, checking to make sure no one’s watching, before re-building the snowman and jumping into it again.

So, for my little friend, I’ve chosen a song that is similarly a little random, repetitive and irreverent, but more importantly, a pure indulgence in whimsy and therefore also makes me smile.