Today’s Study Music: Gomez, Whatever’s On Your Mind

Gomez is one of those bands who consistently produces good music, I don’t think there are any other bands in my itunes collection with as many albums of such consistent and cohesive quality.

I’m really enjoying their new album.

This is my absolute favourite.

But this one is good too…

They’ve put up some cool clips on YouTube.

So have other people…

This isn’t from the new album (obviously).

And neither is this…

Gomez: Whatever’s On Your Mind

New Gomez. Everybody. Look. It’s new music.

I love Gomez. They’re my favourite band that nobody else cares about. I have other favourite bands that everybody cares about. But for some reason meeting another Gomez fan gives me more joy than any other collective musical experience.

I realise that in telling you all to check them out, I am actually contributing to the demise of my enjoyment of my enjoyment of Gomez. I’ll then just have to go back to enjoying them. For their own sake.

YouTube Tuesday: Music to my ears

It’s Tuesday. Which means it’s time for another round of YouTube Tuesday. And another chance for you to share your favourite videos in the comments.

Here’s my contribution.

If you read this and you don’t post your own video in the comments (using the little youtube link on the top right of the comment box (you just have to post the URL to the video not the embed code)) it’s like I’ve put my hand up for a high five and you’ve left me hanging. Not cool.

Sound of Music

I’ve been on a bit of a sound wave this morning – with my earlier posts – and the slightly more heated than anticipated comments on my anti-U2 post. I’m not surprised. Bono’s public Christianity makes him a bit of a sacred cow.

But I don’t like to criticise things without offering solutions here are 5 bands that are better than U2. In my opinion*…

  1. Radiohead – both Coldplay and U2 wish they were as politically aware and musically diverse as Radiohead – incidentally – Radiohead are apparently recording a new album.
  2. Muse – another British band with less people and more musical talent (and a greater talent per capita ratio) than U2.
  3. Gomez – They are to alt.Country what the muppets are to puppetry. Defining. Actually they’re incredibly difficult to pigeon hole.
  4. Athlete – For those of you who like U2 because they’re easy listening try Athlete, or Death Cab for Cutie – both equally compelling in sound but less self-righteously musically annoying.
  5. Augie March  – not only are they Australian, intelligent, poetic, they’re “easy listening” without being middle of the road inoffensive babble.

There’s six bands in a list of five bands that I find more sonically pleasurable than U2. Here are 10 more that fit that category off the top of my head (or out of my iPod – which does contain a bit of U2 – early U2, back when the Edge didn’t look like the kind of guy you’d keep your children away from at public parks).

If you like saccharine music and just can’t help yourself – why not listen to Dave Matthews, or Simon and Garfunkel…

  1. Smashing Pumpkins
  2. Weezer
  3. Architecture in Helsinki
  4. Blur
  5. Oasis
  6. Cake
  7. Custard
  8. The Dandy Warhols
  9. Placebo
  10. The Panics

Those are just the bands – there are plenty of solo artists or balladeers who write nice, sweet music who are infinitely more compelling than a 50 year old who petulantly refuses to remove his sunglasses. I won’t list them. I think I’ve made my point. Why listen to one band that tries to appeal to every aspect of musicality and becomes middle of the road when you can embrace diversity which lets you appreciate the whole road, bit by bit.

That is all.

*I’m not sure this needs to be said on a blog. That’s kind of the point.

Tidal title

There is a new Gomez album out. It’s titled “A New Tide”. You should most definitely get a copy. Unless three part harmonies sung over the top of complex multilayered melodies and infused with a bit of alt.country banjo isn’t your thing. Then you should probably go listen to something else.

On the first listen this sounds like a bit of a mix of old Gomez and more recent Gomez – with a bit of Athlete thrown into the mix. But they’re a band who are notoriously difficult to pigeon hole with categorical certainty.

It really is most excellent. And they maintain their position on the top of the pile of my current favourite bands.

The new Augie March CD is also worth a spin. But that’s probably something I should have mentioned a few weeks ago.

So much to tell you…

Following a two week hiatus you’d expect there’d be a bunch of interesting stories for me to tell you. This would be an incorrect assumption. Sure, I went to a couple of weddings and saw Gomez live (they were amazing). I visited exciting places like Toowoomba, the Gold Coast and Mount Tambourine. I spent hours in a hospital car park waiting to pick up the groom from one of the aforementioned weddings following emergency eye surgery two days before he was due to marry Robyn’s sister Justina. I picked new towels, sheets and bed linen as part of preparation for my own married life (and wasn’t that fun). I learned all about weddings – for instance – I learned that the colour of an invitation should indicate what colour to wear, or not to wear to a wedding (the colour of the invite should match the bridesmaid’s dresses and also indicate the general theming of the wedding). I tried, without success thus far, to find somewhere to hold an “intimate” wedding reception following a larger inclusive ceremony and afternoon tea, and negotiated the nightmare of family politics surrounding weddings (I can now empathise with the captain of the Titanic who was no doubt doing his best to miss a bunch of minor icebergs when he ran into the big one that scuppered the ship). Plus there were a series of traumatic events in the news cycle while I was away that I felt compelled to blog about – however I couldn’t actually be bothered to respond to those compulsions. So will now mention them in passing – Andrew Johns retired as the best half back I’ve ever seen (given that my league watching career spanned exactly the length of his career that’s not too surprising). Anyone who tries to compare the incomparable skills of Mr Johns with Alfie Langer, Ricky Stuart or any other number seven who played in that period has rocks in their heads (even Geoff Toovey wasn’t as good – he sadly had no kicking game). Incidentally, Manly are still undefeated and sit atop the ladder, Manchester United won 7-1 against Roma in the Champions League and made the FA Cup final in the same week while still leading the Premier League by 3 points with only a few rounds to go (including one against Chelsea – which barring a diabolical turn of events and dramatic chance in goal difference it probably won’t matter if they lose they should still take the title) – so all in all it’s good to be me right now

The ANZAC day media fiasco played itself out in the media – but I’d like to point out that Vietnam is in fact no Gallipoli – and April 25 has very little to do with the Vietnam conflict. Why wasn’t the fuss made about that? I’m glad the real issue – Rudd’s Channel 7 favouritism was brought to the fore and promptly dealt with. A school shooting in the US made further mockery of the right to bear/bare arms (why anyone would want paws or hair free arms is beyond me). The idea that the American populace to be able to take part in a citizen’s militia to repel invaders has been a little diluted to the point where students can open fire on their peers. Gun reform is an easy campaign issue for the Democrats now so we’ll see what Joe’s blog has to say on that issue in the near future. Speaking of blogs philnsmiz has finally been updated – and should be again shortly, while Scooter’s blog still languishes back on the first of January where it promised so much but has since delivered so little. Tim’s has been also been updated.

So all in all, I am in need of a holiday. And I’m back at work today.

The final installment

Well readers, I’m sure you’re as sick of reading about my correspondence with Edward NKanga as I am. So I decided to bring this situation to a close. I was listening to a bit of Gomez when inspiration struck. I’d get myself arrested. I created a new gmail account – Officer Max Power can be contacted at corruptioninvestigation@gmail.com. In the meantime I received the following email from Edward, and further instruction from the banker, Mr Thomas Wood.

Dear Tobias,

Thank you very much for your mail.I am very pleased
that you have taken step in the right direction regarding the inheritance
claim.

Thank you very much for the compliment on my family and i
pray that we get to come together and share a very mutual relationship in the
near furture.

Regarding the accept of the bankers,i do not see any
reason for you to worry.I have already told you previously that all modalities
are already in place.My good friend i want you to try as much as possible to
adhere to all instruction given to you by the bank.

Remain
blessed,
Edward Nkanga

The bank apparently requires me to supply the following information to support my claim – does anyone have a spare $US5500 handy?

Requirement for an account activation.
1,Copy of ID or
passport.
2,An amount of US$5,500 for activation.
3,Transfer appraisal
form. Find attached.

Kindly fill attached form and forward to
us. Thus, you are officially advised to effect the transfer of the account
activation charges of US$5,500.00 only, directly to the Transfer Director’s
Account Officer. The payment will be forwarded to you upon your response.

Apparently for just a low, low fee of $5,500 I could have been a multi-multi-billionaire. But it was too late – my time as a corporate fugitive was coming to an end. Tobias was in trouble. I sent this email to the banker:

I have to cancel this transaction – the authorities are on to me – I will be fleeing to the Bahamas – I’ll advise you of any forwarding address. Please help me by destroying all records of correspondence with me.

Yours
faithfully,

Tobias.

And this email to my good friend Edward:

I have to cancel this transaction – the authorities are on to me – I will be fleeing to the Bahamas – I’ll advise you of any forwarding address. Please help me by destroying all records of correspondence with me. I am in desperate need of this help – I fear I may have to turn to violence to solve this problem and trust that you would be prepared to harbour me until this all blows over.

I have received an anonymous tip off that the Australian Fraud Squad have tracked my emails and are presently preparing for my address – pray that I will escape their clutches. I trust that you will find a suitable way to continue with this transaction in my absence.
I suspect that Mr Wood was not all he seemed to be and he may in fact have provided my name to the authorities. I am deeply angered at him and my vengeance will be swift and sure – I have already started tracking his address through IP tracking technology and he can expect to feel the full extent of my wrath in the near future – I hope his untimely demise does not adversely affect your ability to do business with the bank. My private army the Raging Daschunds will tear the still beating organs from his body and smite him with all the vengeance of a school of Piranesi dancing fish. We will not be mocked.

My warm regards to your beautiful family. I am sorry that we never had the chance to meet in person.

Yours faithfully,

Tobias.

Then Max Power stepped in with this email to both parties.

To Whom It May Concern,

We wish to inform you of the arrest of one of your correspondents a Mr Tobias Walther Schranner for the crime of Internet Fraud. Mr Schranner has been charged for launching and participating in several online transactions of a dubious nature. We have every reason to believe that he was intending to lure you into such a deal using the Queensland Scam – a mutation of the famous Nigerian Scam email fraud.
Mr Schranner lures unsuspecting business people into trusting relationships before stealing vital personal information. He has been known to extort or murder his victims in the pursuit of personal wealth. He has vast resources and a personal army of dubious characters at his disposal. We believe he continues to pose a risk to your person even while under guard. Please take all measures necessary to
protect yourselves and stay safe.
If you have had any correspondence with this hardened criminal could you please forward it to this account for monitoring. We believe we have intervened at a crucial time for your safety and warn you to comply to our requests or risk prosecution.

The penalties involved with this particular scam involve the revokation of the licence to practice business and we expect that this Mr Schranner will be prevented from operating further fraud in the future. If we can find the required proof the prosecution are expected to seek capital punishment. Our capital city is Canberra and its prison is legendary in its harsh treatment of white collar criminals.

Thank you for
your cooperation

Max Power,
Special Agent,
Anti-Corruption Squad,
Internet Security Branch 74
Coonabarabran,
Australia