Tuesday, February 16, 2010


From a 'blogger''s point of view, slamming posts online – like a butcher shoving stunned swine down a greasy conveyor belt, towards a whirring rotor blade – is a pain in the arse. You spew out all this random stuff, then try to link bits together and tie it up neatly at the end, twisting the whole effort into some crucial observation, or a punchline. So, from now on, I'm just going to stop writing when I get bored, and bring the post to a crashing halt. Sure, it's not the best deal for readers, but let's see how it goes, for now at least.

I never really got involved in the VINYL vs CD vs CASSETTE vs MP3 debate - but I'll say one thing for the first three formats – if a top tune had a shitty intro or outro, it was easy to remove it when you were taping the damn thing for someone. Yeah, yeah, I know - you can download software from somewhere or other, allowing you to edit MP3s. HAVE YOU EVER DONE THIS, though? I nabbed a copy of Wavepad once, just to isolate and extract a tune I liked from an online reggae mix. It took about 45 minutes, and the final, saved MP3 sounded even tinnier than usual. So I had to do it again, while messing around with settings like REVERB, PITCH, VOLUME...oh, I dunno, FREQUENCY, MODULATION, ENVELOPE, GSX1400, TRANSUBSTANTIATION, whatever. The process was so skull-crushingly painful, I just ended up feeding a load of short sound files into Wavepad and converting them into industrial / power electronics monstrosities instead. THAT bit was easy...just crank up the echo x 5,000, slow the pitch down to –999 and re-record it backwards.

Anyway, I was thinking of some amazing songs cruelly blighted by shit bits at the beginning or end, and I came up with:

Ghostface Killah: "Daytona 500"

Along with Cobra Clutch, this is probably my favourite Wu-Tang spin-off track. I know the world and its soppy grandma raves itself bandy about Liquid Swords, but I never thought it was all that, to be honest – so burn me at the stake.

Daytona 500 is such a killer tune...but WHY did they have to tag that fucking stupid a capella onto the beginning? Just cut to the song, will ya? It's the "doo doo doo doo-duh-doo-doo"s and the "ooh!" that offend my sensibilities. I don't expect every song I like to start off with "ONE! TWO! FREE! FOUR!", but this is as bad as those occasional rough D'n'B tunes you'd get where the first minute was a woman whispering "Sculpt the future..." over synth strings. Or anarcho-punk bangers that kicked off with a nasally poem about nuclear power.

Siouxsie & The Banshees: "She's A Carnival"

I've always been a defender of the GOTHS, the snakebite-quaffing graveyard dandies who left a trail of dead, black roses scattered across Cold War Britain's septic silos. But I thought the Banshees were far better during their Psychedelic Dollhouse Romany Gypsy phase, personally. Dunno about you, but the line, With your hands upon the hips of the dancing fish does it for me every time. And the bit where she wails "GYPSY EYE-YE-YE!" kind of sums up EXACTLY why I never went for girls who take designer handbags seriously.

By the way, did I ever tell you about the time a gypsy girl kicked the crap out of me? It was a very, very long time ago. I would've mentioned it before, but I honestly don't think I can do the anecdote justice. It's true what counter-terrorism experts say: if it boils down to a siege, you have to shoot the women first. The men are marginally more likely to surrender, whereas the women go proper Assault On Precinct 13 ((the original, natch)). My advice to any 9-year old BTi readers is this: don't wander into a gypsy encampment, especially when a bunch of local kids have just spent the past couple of days lobbing stones and full Tango cans at the caravan windows.

Anyway, this tune is class. Well, until the last minute, when one of the band's minstrels starts prannying around with an end-of-pier organ. Moron! Talk about killing the mood. Seriously, it's a completely twattish outro, and renders the tune useless for a) jukeboxes b) compiling a MP3 'mix tape' for someone (in a zip file, I, er, guess). END OF POST.
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