Stuff that pops into my head. Innit.

Monday, 30 August 2010

Things that are just too weird

1. The Vienna Vegetable Orchestra.
    A load of classically trained musicians performing Beethoven, Mozart, Liszt and the like on the veggies that go on your dinner plate. And then, at the end of the performance they give you soup made from the unused veg they have left over. Astonishing.

Playing with your food

2. Have you ever seen a Staffie do an impression of Mother Theresa? I have.


Mother Theresa

3. Have you ever been eating popcorn and thought, "Hang on, that looks a bit like Buddha. What would I do to my karmic well-being if I ate buddha? I'd better keep it." 

No? I have.

4. My allergy to ordinary processed salt. I'm the only person I've ever heard of with this, and it makes me feel like I'm drunk - and that's no fun when you haven't had any booze. I'm mentioning this because I was at my mother in laws yesterday and she used the devils' dandruff to season our food. I know this because I felt a bit funny last night and this morning I felt like this:

So, is there anything you guys find too weird for words?

Thursday, 26 August 2010

Klaxons - Surfing the Void

I have to say I was rather looking forward to the new Klaxons album, so when I read a couple of shall we say....uncomplimentary reviews I was a bit taken aback and prepared for a bit of a disappointment.
What I've now learnt is this: Don't read the reviews before you've listened to the album.

If there was one crucial difference between old rave and nu rave, other than that of scale, it's that the main participants in the latter were philosophy students rather than narcotically altered Scouse builders. 
Klaxons' valiant attempt to square that circle – or rather, to big fish little fish cardboard box that circle – resulted in a rightly acclaimed, Mercury-winning debut album, a record which tried to reference JG Ballard and make you dance at the same time, and was more successful than most of their peers in blending the cerebral and the physical (you didn't hear words such as "exponential" and "Sargasso" at a Hadouken! gig).
Three years is an eternity in pop culture, and the shallow tide that bore them has receded, leaving them high and dry (albeit still with a major record deal). Meanwhile, successive waves of bands – Friendly Fires, Foals, Delphic – have picked up the indie-dance baton. 
Nevertheless, it's been time well-spent.
Surfing the Void is a denser, more complex and intense experience than its predecessor, as well as being noisier, more distorted and more mangled. Lead single "Echoes" and second track "The Same Space" are both reminiscent of the aforementioned Delphic, which may sound unfair as Klaxons were there first. Then again, Joy Division and Kate Bush were both first to the beat they use on "Venusia", so it's all relative.
It's an album which peaks late, with the brilliant "Future Memories" and the strangely angular sound of "Cypherspeed". It's also an album which, heard out of context in pretty much any era, would be an ear-jolting, borderline mind-blowing listen.

I've just listened to this again and I think it's excellent, far better than their debut, Myths of the Near Future.
Well worth a purchase or download.


Tuesday, 24 August 2010

The Fizzees 2010

Hello everyone, it's time to find out what my favourite blogs are.
There's a few different categories to get through, and everyone mentioned in this post has earnt themselves one of these, The Fizzee Seal of Approval. Stick it on your blog if you want-or not, I don't mind. :)


Ok, lets start.

First up, in the "Read my blog or I'll stab you repeatedly" category is Joanna at My Angry Life. She might look cute and the blog background is a girly pink, but don't be deceived- this is one angry lady. Thankfully, she's also funny and entertaining, and that's the stuff that keeps you going back to it.

Next, in the "So Funny You'll Piss Your Pants" category, there are two entries.

Firstly, Hanny and Barb over at twobeansornottwobeans are genuinely laugh out loud funny. They talk about everyday life and illustrate their posts with brilliant original pictures. And they have Ninja Squirrel.

Secondly, Tricia at tershbango has a different take on things but is equally as funny. Go read about her megaboobs of doom.

Ok, serious time. These are blogs that won't be for everyone, but are well worth checking out.

BuckeyeWife at her blog here writes about how she copes with her husbands' infidelity. It's pretty stark and can be difficult to read, but it's compelling stuff. Also, if your reading this Buckeye, I've wanted to comment on some of the stuff you've written but have never really been able to find the right words. I just didn't want you thinking no-one was reading your stuff.

Also in this category is a blog by the ever mysterious The Author is Unknown. She writes about what was her real life, and it ranges from funny to desperate -often in the same post. Go Here to read it. 18+ only!

Last up, we have the general category - which is where everyone else I like resides.

First up we have Pennyclad at Vendfrippery. She likes cool kitschy stuff like me, so makes the cut.

Next is Tom at Millson Weekly who has a picture of himself with that dude from Dragons Den. Win!

Amber comes in here too, she's at and, frankly is the daddy (mummy?) at this blogging lark. I worship at her altar. And you guys should, too.

Mrs Midnight makes the final spot on my Honour Roll, she doesn't like spiders or men with tattoos (except me, obviously), but loves her little doggies. find her at

Well, that's it. Don't take it personally if I forgot about you, I didn't mean it, sorry.

Monday, 23 August 2010


A corruption of the Samoan word Tatau, these first caught the attention of Europeans around 250 years ago and is first referred to by Joseph Banks, the naturalist aboard Cook's ship the "Endeavour" in 1769 where he mentions it in his journal.
To paraphrase,  he states, "I shall now mention the way they mark themselves indelibly, each of them is so marked by their humor or disposition".
It's much the same today, people (not always successfully) attempt to put a bit of their personaliy or allegiance on their skin.
They have never been more prevalent in our Western culture. We now have a number of genres to speak of, and each fulfils an (Haha!) important social function. Among the most popular is the "partner" tattoo. With these, a person permanently inscribes the name of their lover on to a (usually very visible) piece of their flesh.
An indelible way of saying "I'm yours", the tattoo can also serve as a memento of happy times, to be cherished once the relationship has irreparably broken down. Then there are Asian symbols: Chinese, Japanese, Nepalese – it doesn't matter, as long as the tattoo (apparently) means "Om" or "Tiger" and it is done on a beach in Thailand – or in Camden Market. These scream "life-experience".

Yeah, sure they do. I'm tattooed myself -several times- but these days it seems everyone is-young girls, old men, grannies, everyone. The point I'm trying to make here is this.

Choose carefully, really carefully.




Hello, this is a public service announcement.

Hello dear readers, this is just a short post to let you know that tomorrow is the first annual Fizzee Awards.
Yes, I know it's exciting, sit down and you'll be ok. There'll be all sorts of things going on, a red carpet, celebrities no-ones ever heard of, shiny trophies and dancing girls.
Either that or I'll just tell you about some blogs I read and why you should read them too.


Friday, 20 August 2010

Suddenly, that red t-shirt doesn't seem like such a good idea.........

Bullfighting is a horrible spectable and a remnant of the middle ages. It's about time the cows started fighting back.

Wednesday, 18 August 2010

Random short musings (again)

I really want to see Scott Pilgrim vs the World -mainly so I can snigger at Chris Evans' eyebrows, admittedly- however Mrs Rascal is less keen and thinks it might be "silly".
Actually I really wanted to see the new Piranha film, but obviously that will be "silly", so there's even less chance of us seeing that.

"hey baby, check out my eyebrows of doom"

Isn't it a bit strange that Wyclef Jean is recieving death threats for being bold enough to run for president of Haiti? From what I can make out, he only wants to do some good things for his country.

"what? kill me? mais non!"

There's very little mainstream coverage of the Pakistan floods considering the number of people affected is the same as those hit by the Indian Ocean Tsunami of 2004, the Kashmiri earthquake of 2005 and the Haitian earthquake of earlier this year combined. I wonder why.......

"Bob-bob-bobbing along....."

Cheap balsamic vinegar isn't very nice. Sorry, it just isn't-you really get what you pay for with this stuff.

"Don't buy me, I taste like fermented Hippo piss"

Monday, 16 August 2010

9/11 and Mosques

So I gather from the news that there are plans afoot to build a mosque a couple of blocks from the site of the WTC.
There were some predictably overzealous but understandable reactions from people interviewed around the area, but I see it in a different way. I know that the way I see it -through the TV/online/print media, and as a foreigner with no tangible connection to the USA- means fuck all in the grand (or indeed any)scheme of things, but I'm going to tell you anyway.

If an Islamic cultural centre is built nerby the ground zero site, it would be a powerful message that America recognises that  fanatical radical Islamic extremists do not define Islam and that America isn't at war with the Muslim world in spite of the actions of a few.

It's too good an opportunity to pass up, isn't it?

A Mosque yesterday, being utterly beautiful.

Sunday, 15 August 2010


Because Everton started the football season in their traditional manner -by losing- I'm going to ignore that and give you something else instead -well a couple of things, actually.

Transfer window highlights so far

 Best payback:

April: Paddy Kenny says the way Sheffield United backed him when he failed a drug test was emotional. "I just owe the club my career. Everybody here has stood by me. I can't repay them enough."
June: Rejects new United contract. Joins QPR.

Paddy Kenny yesterday, just after noticing his superman impression was shit

Most far-fetched:
February: Kenwyne Jones says he'd only leave Sunderland for "one of the world's biggest clubs". "If one of them comes in for you you might want to go to that next level ... but I have never given any indication that I want to leave or anything like that. The stories are so far-fetched. People know how committed I am to Sunderland."
August: Joins Stoke.

Kenwyne Jones yesterday, just after realising he'd joined Stoke

Best hands-off warning:
Inter, July, reassuring fans: "It's true that every day we are receiving calls ... But Mario Balotelli is priceless. He is not on the market. He will stay with us 100%."
August: Joins Manchester City

Mario Balotelli, yesterday, just after he found out how much City were going to pay him

Most bored:
1 August: Christian Poulsen's agent. "The newspapers have no link to reality. Let me close this saga once and for all. He is staying in Turin. The constant stories make us tired. Christian will not join Liverpool. "
12 August: Christian joins Liverpool, presumably because of something massively horrendous he did in a previous life, the poor bloke

Christian Poulsen yesterday, just after realising he'd joined Liverpool

Thursday, 12 August 2010

Top 10 albums you might not know.

No.2. LCD SoundSystem - Sound of Silver

Hey, ever heard the one about the indie band who incorporated a dance direction? Oh, you have? What, like, 1,875,328 times already? This week? Well, you’re not the only one. In fact, if I have to listen to one more person telling me, “Dance music’s not dead, it just learnt to play guitar,” I might just be forced to gouge out my own eyes with a glowstick. Anyway,the idea that you’re somehow breaking boundaries by sticking some bleeps’n’bongos underneath your rock song is laughable. Bloc Party, The Rapture, Klaxons, Hot Chip, Hadouken!, The Futureheads, Calvin Harris, Late Of The Pier, Radiohead, Metronomy, The Twang, … the list of indie bands who’ve mixed the rock with the rhythm in recent times is so wide and varied it makes such a declaration virtually meaningless.

Now I've got that out of the way, let's continue. :)


LCD Soundsystem's James Murphy is chiefly regarded as a man with a gargantuan record collection. Less appreciated is the depth of his songwriting, and the unsettling accuracy with which he depicts the fretful ageing hipster whose gargantuan record collection is no longer enough. Beneath the jokes in his signature tune, Losing My Edge, lurks a real fear of growing old and redundant. Amid the dependably thrilling punk-funk (North American Scum) and mercurial Bowie-vs-Underworld art-techno (Get Innocuous), Sound of Silver houses two songs that pack a devastating emotional punch. Someone Great is an addictive techno cut with an unexplained tragedy at its shattered heart, while the spine-tingling, New Order-tinged All My Friends is the sound of midlife stock-taking in the centre of a crowded dancefloor.

This is dance-rock for grown-ups: extraordinary, and not bettered in the genre until Murphy's own This is Happening came out earlier this year.

Tuesday, 10 August 2010

Beautiful on the outside.......

There's a bit of a fuss going on at the moment concerning Naomi Campbell and her alleged acceptance of a couple of "blood" diamonds -which she no longer has apparently because she gave the stones to Jeremy Ratcliffe, the then head of the Nelson Mandela Children’s Fund, intending them to be used to raise money for the charity.
However, the fund said it had not received the stones.
There's a shock.
There's always been an ugly side to Naomi Campbell -the air rage incident, wearing fur after publicly denouncing it, going out with Flavio Briatore (sorry!) - but this is on a whole new level of either crass stupidity or fuck-everyone-else-look-what-I've-got-ness.
Accepting diamonds from the leader of a country not known for being exactly well off is stupid and perhaps naive.
Accepting them from a man who referred to himself as a "Warlord" and who later went on to become the first African to be tried for war crimes for his involvement in the Sierra Leone civil war is ridiculous.

Naomi Campbell yesterday, just after stabbing a kitten

Monday, 9 August 2010

Robert Green

The new football season is about to begin and all the clubs and their fans are behaving exactly the way they always do- Liverpool fans think they'll win the title (they won't) and are trying to sign someone awful, Manchester City are buying everyone who has ever seen a ball, Everton have signed a guy who once scored a goal for Leeds. For nothing, obviously.

However, at West Ham, things have taken a bit of a strange turn.

West Ham coaches have been hurling abuse at Rob Green in order to prepare him for the new season, when rival fans are expected to swearily torment him over the blunder that gifted USA an equaliser against England in the recent World Cup. I don't know the details of the torment the blundering goalie has to suffer, but I can imagine Green and his coaches limbering up each morning with a few bloomin' bunglers and silly sods before moving on to an intensive session of more obscene insults and then winding down with a couple of choice hand gestures and maybe a slanderous allegation concerning the keeper's mother.
At least one day a week they probably fling rotten fruit and empty beer cans at him, and it is not inconceivable that a member of the club's administrative staff has disseminated the keeper's email address so that fans may bombard him with Photoshopped images of his person being violated in the most grotesque ways. Or that Avram Grant has hired a band not unlike Sherlock Holmes's Irregulars and ordered them to jostle the keeper whenever they see him in the street and perhaps daub offensive slogans on his car and house. So, yes, Green should be well prepared for the season ahead.

Rob Green yesterday, just after Avram Grant took the piss out of his hairstyle.

Friday, 6 August 2010

Hmmm....... that's odd. Part 862

Apologies for the shortness of this post, but I felt I had to share this with you. I came across this picture whilst having a trawl around the web.

It's Skateboarding Jesus.

Ok, who's spotted that Jesus shreds without shoes? He's hardcore.

Rated R Deluxe

It’s been a whopping 10 years since the release of the Queens of the Stone Age breakout album Rated R (yes, you are old).Hailed one of the greatest albums of the decade by the likes of Rolling Stone magazine, Rated R also sits quite comfortably amid my ‘Favourite Records of All Time’ list, so I was pretty happy when I heard Homme and co were going to release a deluxe edition of the album to celebrate the big tenth anniversary of Rated R. Along with the original record, the special edition is packed with a second disc containing a live performance from Reading Festival in 2000, and some B sides to boot. Party time for any Queens of the Stone Age fanboy.


The record kicks off with ‘Feel Good Hit of the Summer’, a song about life’s excesses. Not that you wouldn’t have worked this out yourself as Homme spits the lyrics of “Nicotine, Valium, Vicodin, Marijuana, Ecstasy and Alcohol. C-C-C-COCAINNNEE” into your speaker. Drugs are bad, kids, bad, but boy said list of illegal substances sounds incredible (and a bit like one of Lindsay Lohan's old shopping lists) when set to riffs which march towards the listener like an angry rhino. And then a transition as smooth as Sean Connery rolls in song two, Lost Art of Keeping a Secret, an endlessly sexy, smoky track led by growling distorted riffs, and a devious Homme, who practically bites your earlobes as he coos “Whatever you do…don’t tell anyone”. Ok then Josh, I won't.
We shimmy into Leg of Lamb and get treated to one of rocks greatest riffs.This is how it sounds when your ears get laid. Can this get any better?
Track four, Auto Pilot is a haze of psychedelic musical smoke rising. Bassist Nick Oliveri’s vocals take on an placid tone, adding to the dreamy atmosphere of this track’s waterfall licks and wispy military drums which make you as high as the trip it’s telling of – “I wanna fly, I wanna ride with you.”. The trip continues with Better Living Through Chemistry which ultimately lands in a crescendo of mesmerizing harmonies, sounding wholly ambient despite the ferocity of guitars and drums slapping away in the distance.

Before we take it too easy, Oliveri is quick to shimmy back into the driver’s seat, taking the wheel of the automobile that is Rated R and steering it into a further, notably more hectic direction. Cranking up the volume with Quick and to the Pointless, the track is a monstrous recipe of screeching vocals, cheerleader chants and chunky instrumentation, it’s fast, hard power reflecting the reality of the one quick and sweaty take it was recorded in. The hardcore punk continues with Tension Head. Nick’s screams of “I’m feeling so sick!” amid insane guitars make it a shot of passionate musical rage that gets your heart pumping and head banging, perfectly counterbalancing Homme’s more melodic waves amongst the album.
A suave instrumental, Lightning Song, takes the BPM down again as the album slowly draws to a close, concluding on I Think I Lost My Headache, an epic 8 minute song said to be Homme’s favourite track on the whole album. Flying irrationally between spiky, irregular time signatures, the distorted rhythm perfectly reflects the disturbing lyrics of paranoia sung by Josh in his humid falsetto, “It’s all in my head I know, so they tell me so, until my head explodes, into my head it goes”. The track finishes up with tumbling riffs that give way to a brass section repeating the same monotonous tune, concluding Rated R on an aptly unpredictable, genius note.

Cd2, containing the live set and B sides is incredible (and a really good incentive for those who already own Rated R to buy this), but the pinnacle of this package is disc oneThe record is a simply amazing piece of work which brought Grammy nominations and golden disc. A raw, wild journey through psychedelic, rock, hardcore and more. If you don't have this already, buy it. If you do have it, buy it again.

Josh Homme yesterday, just after spotting Jamie Redknapp.

Tuesday, 3 August 2010

See, this is what happens when you try and censor the web

X-rated footage was visible to staff and journalists inside the Indonesian parliament for 15 minutes before security staff were able to turn off the stream, local media report. The TVs are used to provide information on the day's political schedule.
It comes ahead of an 11 August deadline for local internet service providers to start blocking online pornography.
It is unclear if the incident at the House of Representatives is in any way connected.
Local media reports that the pornographic images were taken from an adult website that is banned in neighbouring Singapore and Malaysia.
The deputy speaker of the House apologised for the incident.
Correspondents say the move to block online porn, which was ordered by Indonesia's Information Minister Tifatul Sembiring last month, has been generally welcomed in the Muslim-majority democracy of 240 million people.

Monday, 2 August 2010

The Surf

Photographer Stuart Gibson has come up with some truly stunning images.
If you're looking for a new desktop background, check these out.

More here

Sunday, 1 August 2010


Ok, you're probably thinking that this is an unusual subject for me to be talking about -and let's be honest here- you're absolutely correct.
You see, Mrs Rascal's auntie has a business handmaking bags in the glens of Scotland and they're really nice.

Have a look for yourself.

More here