Monday, December 25, 2006


4 day weekend! I've slowly gotten my Christmas cheer and the year, in retrospect, has flown by. Contrary to the last, the work group decided to get into the Xmas decorations around the office, which included cutting out dozens of colour photocopied lollipops, to stringing lollies together to create an alternative to tinsel hanging from the roof. It also required me to create some gingerbread biscuits to which I got the response that I'd make a great wife one day. They turned out to be edible which was all that I was aiming for -including the Michael Jackson circa 1980's one- top right of the tray. I started thinking about decorating, but gave up when I saw the time and didn't have any ready-made icing. They seem to pale to some of the offerings I've seen lately here.

Fortunately we beat the other efforts at different sites and won a $300 prize which will go towards the multiple fires that are likely to be generated from the massive amounts of ornaments hung near white hot lights on the ceiling.

Friday night concluded the final gig this year to make a paltry 8 -when in comparison to some of the readers of this blog. The night began with drinks at the Imperial where, after just one the little man in my head who prevents inner thoughts from becoming audible, took a break. Needless to say it made the evening more enjoyable from then on. We headed off to The Spanish Club to see Even, supported by Bob Evans, Mike Noga & The Gentlemen of Fortune, with a special guest DJ and MC'd by Brian Nankervis. We passed on the first support act and half of Bob Evans in favour of a few more drinks at the front bar which was pretty packed.

It's the first time I've been to The Spanish Club and it's an impressive venue, from an entrance you'd likely see in a European castle, to the classy design and Persian rugs inside. (Lucky rugs never seem to be sold at full price according to all those crazy warehouse ads -minimum of 250% off!- is that possible?)

It was to some surprise that the guest DJ was none other than Tim Rogers from You Am I. With Brian Nankervis as MC, it felt like an episode of RickWiz and there was a mini quiz inbetween sets, thankfully somewhat easier. Rightfully, a punter was correctly denied a prize for identifying a Nikki Webster song with about 5 sample seconds.

I won't say too much on the main set by Even mainly because I hadn't heard them prior to the night so I can't identify any of their songs. Needless to say they didn't leave anything on stage and all songs played sounded impressive but what did standout were some of the awesome guitar openings. I'll have to check out some of their albums now...

While we knew it was likely that Tim Rogers would take to the stage and pump out a song or two, the 2nd encore/finale was a fantastic way to finish off the year. Davey Lane from You Am I jumped up from the crowd, there was a huddle for a couple of minutes and the 5 on stage blasted out Jumping' Jack Flash by the Stones. It trumped any expectations and we left with the venue ringing ears and happy faces. Cheers for organising it Jimbo. A great end to the year for music...

Merry Christmas to anyone reading this. It's 1.35am and Santa still hasn't visited. I even made biscuits...

Monday, December 18, 2006


Compiling a list of my favourite 20 albums is pretty hard. I'm certain if I re-visit the list in few months time it will be different. Its also unfortunate that I really only started buying CDs quite late in my life. I know I've missed out on countless gems in my teenage years and have now filled my collection with a number of "Best of's". (Eg U2, Pearl Jam, Crowded House, INXS, REM etc) As I didn't want the list to read Best of's from 1-20, they're excluded.

1) Sarah Blasko - What The Sea Wants, The Sea Will Have
What can I say? It's still playing strong, I'm bias, a huge fan, but I haven't tired of any songs since the first play.

2) Garbage - Bleed Like Me
Personally I think this is their strongest album with a solid mix of what made them unique in the 90's with new'ish sounds.

3) Clare Bowditch and the Feeding Set - What Was Left
Sunday afternoon album with a great mix of instruments, oddly with quite depressing lyrics at times. Not that you'd notice with Clare's delivery.

4) No Doubt - Tragic Kingdom
Start to finish a great pop album. Catchy lyrics and great sounds. Haven't enjoyed anything they've made since.

5) Alicia Keys - The Diary of Alicia Keys
Fantastic voice, great use of the piano.

6) Martha Wainwright - Martha Wainwright
"Bloody Mother F****ing A**hole". Angry, angry young woman. What a musical family...

7) Something For Kate - Desert Lights
It's not just the bassist that makes this band good. I enjoy this more so than their older stuff. Great breadth of songs here.

8) Sarah Blasko - The Overture and the Underscore
I probably didn't rate this album as high as this after the initial listens, but after seeing her live last year I revisited it.

9) Garbage - Version 2.0
I was eagerly anticipating this after the first single and remember I wasn't disappointed back in those uni days.

10) PJ Harvey - Stories From The City, Stories From The Sea
"Good Fortune" still gives me the tingles down the spine

11) Fiona Apple - When The Pawn
It was either this or "Extraordinary Machine". It's pleasantly surprising how many good songs are on this.

12) N*E*R*D - In Search Of
"Provider" is outstanding and the followup album is almost as good.

13) The Audreys - Between Last Night And Us
Makes the banjo cool. Great vocals and up a few spots because of the live shows.

14) Fort Minor - The Rising Tied
The only rap album I've heard that isn't all about pimps, ho's, bling and sex. "Kenji" being the best, being about WWII internment camps.

15) Red Hot Chili Peppers - By The Way
After reading the Anthony Kiedis autobiography and what inspired "Venice Queen" it made me go back and appreciate the album.

16) Regurgitator - Unit
"Everyday Formula" and "Black Bugs" need I say more? I still remember this was one of the first albums I got that had an 18+ restriction. The giggling at the end of "Modern Life" still freaks me out.

17) Linkin Park & Jay-Z - Collision Course
Ok this one is a little embarrassing, but I must admit to get me going for any sort of exercise, this album does it. Like "Eye of the Tiger".

18) Eminem - The Eminem Show
Yes its crass, rude, cringe worthy, but it's also funny, clever and amazing how he can get words to rhyme. Just don't take any of the lyrics literally.

19) Garbage - Garbage
"Only happy when it rains"

20) Gorillaz - Demon Days
Takes you to another world with songs like the one featuring Dennis Hopper's spoken word.

Rich, Yossarian, and M's nemesis have also compiled favourite/summary of gigs for the year. I would too if I went to enough, but I'll list my top 3:

1) Something For Kate - The Forum
Packed, singing crowd, brilliant live band. The violin solo for Deja Vu...awesome
2) Sarah Blasko - The Forum
Sounded better than the album. Is that possible?
3) The Audreys - Ruby's Lounge
Metres from the stage on a couch...try doing that in the big smoke. Great vocals. Does Taasha ever stop smiling?

Sunday, December 10, 2006


Not sure what to write about but there are a few topics I need to get off my chest...

Terribly sorry to the woman who served me at HMV at Chadstone last Thursday. She obviously wanted to engage me in conversation when I went to purchase a CD. I smiled and nodded, but that's about it. I wasn't rude, but I felt bad and spent the rest of the afternoon being extra friendly to anyone else that served me. Even the seedy moustache lady who altered my jeans.

I read a couple of letters in the Sunday paper re: Naomi Robson not returning to host the hard-hitting Today Tonight. Here's one:
'I am shattered Naomi will not host Today Tonight next year. I certainly hope the show does not go downhill' R. Melchionna

Downhill? How worse can the show go? as I rub my belly with the recommended tanning magic beans. Cue the 'Rock Bottom' episode from Simpsons.

The end of the year is rapidly approaching and the workplace is getting in the swing of xmas decorations etc. But I also seem to notice the little things that start to give me the shits. Whether its the overtly loud taping of a mouse button (honestly do you need to thump each click?) to the loud talker who chomps individual peanuts not unlike stomping through glass with gumboots. Hmmm they do sound fresh and it makes me go to a pub and down a frosty beer... thanks...

I hate shopping crowds, I just want to go in and get the hell out of there. Hint to anyone wishing to do shopping when no-one's around: In the past I've always gone just when all the shopping centres just start late nights. This year it'll be this Tuesday. Chadstone's open until 9pm and hopefully like last year, empty. The crowds and mayhem are all worth it when Christmas day comes along and the rellies get together with the little tykes gleaming, non-corrupted attitudes that make the day special once again.

Shopping on Friday was successful, at least for me... the 24 box set for season 1-5, 3 albums and ingredients for gingerbread men. Not sure if I'd want to be the people at work eating these...I'd better make sure they're edible tonight just to be sure.

M's nemesis, in response to a Favourite 20 albums list, do I dare unleash something that will reek of poor taste? Of course. Something will come shortly. Thanks for the prompt and suggestion!