Musings of a Sainted Blue Pterodactyl Hunter

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THE HUGE 2013 PHOTODUMP
navigatormerlin
For lack of posts since... -checks watch- April, here is a mass photodump of things "gotten-up-to" in 2013. Merry Christmas!




















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The Adventures of Augie March Continue?
navigatormerlin
I have relatively reliable hearsay that the The Music Board of the Australia Council for the Arts is presenting a grant to our beloved Augie March to assist in producing their fifth studio album! Given that we have had nothing but radio silence from these guys since Glenn Richards released Glimjack back in 2010 (and the rest of the band way back with Watch Me Disappear in 2008) this is fantastic, marvelous, wonderful news!

I must admit during this hiatus, talks of frictions between the band members, particularly during later tour dates had me worried that we may not see another Augie Album on the horizon... Given that scuttlebutt at this stage isn't the most trustworthy of sources, I'm still not willing to conclude that we will see another album soon, but fingers crossed alright? The question is, if this does happen, will this project take on the tone of the more recent albums that the band has created, or will it be Old Augie? It matters not! Maybe now I will finally get to see them in concert!

The Golden Age of Woodkid
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Right! So the last time I reviewed release by Woodkid I was none too pleased and spoke quite harshly. For that, dear readers, I am sorry. I have recently had the pleasure of purchasing and listening to Woodkid's first full length album 'The Golden Age' and it is remarkable! My earlier gripes about clunky lyrics still stand in that the offending song, 'Run Boy Run' was included in the album, and this still remains to me the weakest song on it. Aside from this, however, it is brilliant! This is very much a thematic album, with a steady, consistent tone and pace but at the same time no two songs are similar to the point that there is almost a chronological story from beginning to end to work through. It features that orchestral sound that we have come to know and love with Woodkid and overall it feels a lot more organic than his two EPs. I was very very impressed to find that each of the instruments is recorded and not simulated and you can definitely see this reflected in the quality of the work as a whole. Songs that I particularly enjoyed included 'Ghost Lights', 'Iron' (from his first EP) and 'I Love You' which was also released with one of Woodkid's stylistic film clips to be played as a third installment in the existing sequence. Overall this is a fantastic album which I would recommend to anyone that is bound to create some new favourites. I'm willing to bet that despite its early release date this will remain a strong contender in my favourite albums of this year.

Great stuff!


Joob out.

Citizen
navigatormerlin
Songs like this serve to remind me time and time again why I am a devout citizen of The Cat Empire.



Brilliant!

I hate Windows 8.
navigatormerlin
Guys. Seriously. What is this?

When we look for new and innovative software platforms in the ever evolving world of technology, the first question we should be asking is 'is it better than the last one?'

The answer with Windows 8 is a very clear 'NO'.

Why, may I ask you, does every new release software have to place visual appeal above all other improvements? If I wanted to buy into Apple, I would have just gone ahead and purchased a Macbook. The beauty of owning anything BUT an Apple should be that you can actually DO stuff.

I would like to be able to customise. I would like to be able to navigate my screen without you deciding (rather obnoxiously) that I need an update, or that I suddenly need to open one of the bijillion other apps which you have helpfully clogged up my system with before I even got the box off the shelf (Microsoft Mahjong? Anyone? I didn't think so). I would like to sign into my x-box live account with a DIFFERENT email address to that which you forced me to enter just to create a user account. I WOULD LIKE AN 'X' BUTTON AT THE TOP OF MY PROGRAMS SO I CAN ACTUALLY CLOSE THEM AND NOT LEAVE THEM SAPPING BATTERY LIFE IN THE BACKGROUND. OH. MY. GOD.

These are not 'new' concepts! In the perpetual cycle of creating more "user friendly" programs for the idiots who will eventually consume them we have forgotten what true innovation looks like! And no, it does not involve senselessly restricting every aspect of an operating system to make it look more like an Apple product! GAH!

At this stage the only thing that I can think of in favour of this... this... monstrosity, is that it is mildly faster than the old system. Well done. This will make up for the time I spend trawling internet forums looking for ways to undo what you have so helpfully done.

I hope you all choke on your mind numbing excuse for technology.
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Locke Lamora
navigatormerlin
So I've been trying to read the second novel in Scott Lynch's Gentleman Bastard Sequence.

I honestly don't know what to say about this one. I started reading about a month ago and I'm still only a little way through... I just can't seem to sink my teeth into it.

This being said, the same thing happened with the first in the series: The Lies of Locke Lamora. I began just before my school term started and I didn't finish until well into the holidays. I did, however, finish. At the time I put it down to the fact that I was busy with work/school/everything else, but now I'm not so sure.

Don't get me wrong, I quite like the feel of the book. The dialogue is witty, the characters well fleshed and the universe carefully constructed, but something SOMETHING is delaying progress. Hell, I've even read two books in between! The truly baffling thing is that I can usually put this 'readers block' down to something obvious, but nothing is leaping out as being in any way bad!

Still, I suppose I will finish eventually. It will probably be later rather than sooner, however.

Oh, and here's this just because I find myself incapable of listening to anything else at the moment.



That is all :)

Do you like......................................................................... Dream Theater?
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Why do they do this to me?

Every now and then I realise how many musically credible people I know list Dream Theater among their favourite artists and because of that I'll find myself trawling YouTube for samples of their work thinking "this time, for sure. This time I'll be ready to recognise their awesome the way others do."
All that ends up happening is that I will marvel at the mastery of their musical ability, the composition of the different elements and instrumentation. It is simply wonderful. I'll think to myself "This is it! I have finally reached the point where I can appreciate good music for what it is!"

Then the vocals begin.

I'm sorry but I just can't accept that this is a band I will ever be interested in past a passing fancy to peek in and see what all the fuss is about. The lyrics are I'm sorry to say simply boring and overdone, and the vocalist is a little too close to Brian Molko for my tastes. I think I can say that if this were a purely instrumental band I would be among the hardcore fans at the front of the crowd throwing my shirt around my head and screaming in star-struck fury. As it is, I can't quite justify listening to their work while simultaneously ignoring the lyricist, it seems like cheating.

I suppose I will just have to continue doing as I have been; Listening to them every few years when some new muso comes along and tells me all about the marvel that is Dream Theater, then coming to this shocking realisation all over again.

Or maybe I have no taste. Who am I to say?



Merlin out.

Wanderlust King
navigatormerlin
So Gypsy Punk. It exists. It's -sniff- beautiful.



Also French Electro-Swing. Bitch.



Also before you get away!



Okay. Now you may leave. :)

Happy holidays! And happy birthday to my Dad!

Merlin out.

Zinn-isms and good ol' lefties
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I know where you live
navigatormerlin
I just found out about a website called "Spokeo".
It operates solely in the US (for now), but its entire purpose is to supply intimate personal details about anybody to well, anybody.
(I suppose Facebook has been doing the same for many years now, but this site doesn't even try to hide it under false pretenses...)

Is that not messed up?!

Protect your privates!

Merlin out.

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