A mass of contradictions

A destination for an occasional writer and broadcaster to record things that don't really belong anywhere else.

Music writing is dead. My favourite records of 2013 


Jonathan Wilson - Fanfare

Stand out joint: Moses Pain

Danny Brown - Old

Stand out joints: Lonely, Red 2 Go

Mogwai - Les Revenants

Stand out joints: Hungry Face, Special N

Parquet Courts - Light Up Gold

Stand out joints: Stoned and Starving, Light Up Gold II, Donuts Only

Kurt Vile - Wakin’ on a Pretty Daze

Stand out joints: Wakin on a Pretty Day, Goldtone

Ty Segall - Sleeper

Stand out joints: The Keepers, Crazy

Weekend Money - Naked City

Stand out joints: Yellow (feat. Heems), Naked City, Coke and Coffee

The state of things



"In an interview with The Guardian, Kevin Shields spoke out against the Mercury Prize and explained why, he believes, mbv was not even considered. Shields says the record was “banned” because it was released independently, free of a label or digital distribution through corporate channels like iTunes or Amazon. (The digital release of mbv went through the band’s own website.) As The Guardian notes, the Mercury Prize’s website requires an album to have “a digital and physical distribution deal in place in the UK” to qualify.

"To be as independent as we are is… virtually illegal," Shields told The Guardian. He went on:

Our album’s not a real album because it’s independent. The corporate-ness has got to such a point where we’ve essentially been told that we don’t exist. So, technically, that album doesn’t exist. OK? It’s not allowed to exist according to the Mercury prize… God help [whoever wins]… There are sinister forces at work.

Shields nonetheless told The Guardian he did not regret mbv's release route and would “recommend it to anyone in our kind of position.” The album will be on iTunes eventually, “just to see what happens.” Meanwhile, the Mercury winner will be announced October 30.”




Award ceremonies for art forms is one of the most idiotic customs of a civilised society. Not everything has to be a competition, and the same way I’d like to be known for what I dislike as much as what I like I relish things that aren’t competitive as much as I relish things that are. 

That way, I can try to be my best at a sporting endeavour and experience glory and defeat (and treat those two impostors just the same) and then go home and listen to a record I like without giving the slimmest of donkey’s dicks about what anyone else thinks about it.

Girls - Royal Headache

I walk 47 miles of barbed wire, 
I use a cobra-snake for a necktie, 
I got a brand new house on the roadside, 
Made from rattlesnake hide, 
I got a brand new chimney made on top, 
Made out of a human skull, 
Now come on take a walk with me, Arlene, 
And tell me, who do you love? 

Who do you love? 
Who do you love? 
Who do you love? 
Who do you love? 

Tombstone hand and a graveyard mine, 
Just 22 and I don’t mind dying. 

Who do you love? 
Who do you love? 
Who do you love? 
Who do you love? 

I rode a lion to town, use a rattlesnake whip, 
Take it easy Arlene, don’t give me no lip, 

Who do you love? 
Who do you love? 
Who do you love? 
Who do you love? 

Night was dark, but the sky was blue, 
Down the alley, the ice-wagon flew, 
Heard a bump, and somebody screamed, 
You should have heard just what I seen. 

Who do you love? 
Who do you love? 
Who do you love? 
Who do you love? 

Arlene took me by my hand, 
And she said “Ooowee Bo, you know I understand.”

Who do you love? 
Who do you love? 
Who do you love? 
Who do you love?

Away/Towards - Hookworms

'Terrible. I'm embarrassed by it. It's non-musical and non-rhythmical.'

Lee Mavers hates his own record.

The girl from the west

She appeared from the west, met her man long ago,
but he’d gone too far, and she moved too slow.
Reaching for an apple, she took a huge bite,
flicked her long hair, and said upon sight:

'The sun is deep blue and the moon is bright green,
and what has been seen cannot be unseen.
I looked at you and you looked at me,
and freedom’s not worth the price to be free.
My apple’s now gone, and my teeth are now clean,
and the sun has turned blue and the moon has turned green.’

The tide was streaming in, and she had no shoes,
so I motioned to her to pick up her balloons,
and I took her around places that she hadn’t seen,
since the sun turned deep blue and the moon turned bright green.

'What a cat you are.' said the girl from the west,
and I didn’t want to become a pest,
so I just nodded, convinced of a dream,
because the sun had turned blue and the moon was bright green.

By the time I’d looked down, beneath the wood floor,
it was all I could do to point and point more,
because the sea was now red and her hair had a sheen,
and the sun shone rich blue and the moon sparkled green.

'How much more do we walk?' said the girl from ago,
and I looked and smiled and said ‘I don’t know,
because I don’t know where we’re going or where we’ve now been,
because the sun shimmers blue and the moon appears green.’

'Do you see that young boy, sat on that goat?',
said the girl from the west as she undid her coat,
and I squinted to look for the child she could see,
but all I saw was a field buzzing with bees.

They buzzed up and flew above all the trees,
and soon they merged together with the moon that shone green,
and from inside her coat the boy popped out his head,
shook out his hair and smiled and then said:

'You'll not get too far trying to follow those bees,
because the sun has turned blue and the moon has turned green.’

And I had more to do than run and chase bees,
so I looked for more places that I hadn’t seen,
but if I had to choose, it’s doubtless I’d be,
where the sun still glares blue and the moon is bright green.

Heavy Times are a really good band. They’re on Hozac Records. They’re a street, they’re an icicle, they’re a panic attack, they’re totally natural. They’re a really fast night out, a blur, a switch and a blow to the head. Before you know it you’re waking up in the morning.

Noise punk. Poise nunk. Siope knun. Noise punk.

If There Is Hell Below - An ode to bath salts

King Tuff

Awesome music show presented by Rob Morgan and Callum Eckersley, and, this week, me. Features such genres as spacehop, big band folk, hippity-hoppity crime rap, lo-fi garage, saxo-disco-soul and pop music. And yes, I made most of those up.


Small Professor – Easiest Song ft Guilty Simpson

King Tuff – Hit & Run

Heavy Times – I’m Single

Homeboy Sandman – Richardsun

Despot – House Made of Bricks

Dimlite – Cogwheel Gag

Charles Bradley & The Menahan Street Band – I’ll Slip Away

Medusa – Stangulation

Mazes – Till I’m Dead

Dahi Beats – Tetris

Renny Wilson – By and By

The Rolling Stones – Stupid Girl

There is a great story in Keith Richards autobiography about Charlie Watts knocking out Mick Jagger. Apparently Mick and Keith were arguing about something in the early hours of the morning so Mick decides to phone Charlie to try and settle it. On the phone Mick says “I want my drummer here now” (not the actual quote as I don’t have the book to hand). An hour later there is a knock at the door. Keith opens the door and Charlie, dressed impeccably walks straight past Keith and up to Mick and punches him straight in the face. He then says something along the lines of “I’m not your drummer, you’re my singer Jagger” before walking out. Absolutely brilliant