Dance Music Triple
Nov19

Dance Music Triple

This week Spotify shuffled up some tunes for me as part of its regular Discover Weekly and one song in particular just sent shockwaves through my head as it tumbled through the headphones; that was Hey Music Lover by S’Express, a song I’d not heard since it probably charted in the very late 1980s and which I can only assume I didn’t really care for at the time. My music tastes towards the end of college and prior to university were eclectic but dance and pop weren’t really in the mix. However, listening to it again, decades later… The passage of time clearly affects appreciation for things in the old days. Sometimes it’s bad – old wankers and idiots who’ve never studied history (or probably much at all) voting the country back into a poorer, more oppressive era, for instance – but sometimes, like now, it’s wonderful. S’Express led to a bit of a musical journey through other dance and acid and house tracks this week and here are...

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The Women Of Kilobaud Computing
Sep26

The Women Of Kilobaud Computing

Computer programming is seen as a mainly male profession which can probably be attributed to the rise in home computers in the early-to-mid 1980s that were then marketed almost exclusively for boys. I can remember lusting after a Sinclair ZX Spectrum as soon as I saw one in operation and I know that all of my male friends ended up getting a computer of some sort within the first few years of that decade; female friends and relations, though… not a clue. However, prior to the most recent 30 year period computer programming was certainly more equal, if not heavily leaning towards women in the industry. To illustrate this – and just because they’re so full of retro gorgeousness I can’t resist them – here are some covers from Kilobaud Microcomputing...

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Floral Photography Of Emi Nakajima
Jul30

Floral Photography Of Emi Nakajima

Someone I follow on Google+ and whose photography always fills me with joy is Emi Nakajima. Her photographs of flowers have such a fabulous, tranquil feel to them; a dream-like quality that comes from the very shallow depth of field and gorgeously smooth background and colours. And while I don’t usually like people watermarking their own photos there’s something about the wording of her name across each image that makes you believe each picture could be a book cover. A small sample of some of her wonderfulo photos is below. If you ever need to ease off the stresses of daily life you could do a lot worse than scroll through Emi Nakajima’s...

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Say No To Toddlers – 1970s Public Information Film
Jul09

Say No To Toddlers – 1970s Public Information Film

Graham Weevilface is not a name that’s particularly well-known these days but in the mid 1970s he was one of the leading producers of public information films on behalf of the British government. He was a recipient of numerous awards for films such as Danger! Slow Worm! and Chalk Cliffs: White Trauma but it’s his 1976 classic Say No To Toddlers that arguably had the most impact on a British public on the cusp of emerging from the darkness of high unemployment and unending energy crises into a brave new world of European integration and booming prosperity. A massive sense of relief following World War II, the rise of promiscuity in the 1960s, and long, dark nights with nothing better to do in the early 1970s led to a state of what was described in government documentation at the time as “too many blasted babies” and so a number of programmes were accelerated in order to reduce the birth rate in the British Isles. Alongside adding bromide to the water supply and inventing a new craze called “aerobics” that was designed to tire people out making sex less likely the services of Weevilface were sought out and in very short order he was able to produce the following classic film clip. Shown in cinemas and on television – particularly before and after schools and colleges programmes as children were most open to the message within – Say No To Toddlers was initially received with the kind of stupefying horror associated with all British public information films; the creepy music and stark voiceover messages were requirements of government-sanctioned movies but Weevilface excelled in the craft. However, in follow-up interviews with childless men and women during the 1980s and early 1990s it’s this specific film warning the dangers that toddlers and children possess that most often came out with a sense of warmth; many interviewees claimed that had it not been for the consideration of the British government they might have inadvertently unleashed swarms of adult-killing, car-stealing babies into the general...

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Top 5 Horrifically Dangerous Spanish Festivals
Jul05

Top 5 Horrifically Dangerous Spanish Festivals

Spain: famous for its sun, sea, soaring temperatures, siestas, and Salvador Dali. But it’s not just things that begin with the letter ‘S’ that Spain embraces so let’s take a quick look at five horrifically dangerous events that help to mould the characters of Spanish people. Running Of The Bulls Not exclusive to Spain and not limited to just one place there is, however, one very famous “Running of the Bulls” event and that’s the one that takes place in the 8-day festival in Saint Fermin, Pamplona. With a few rules – competitors must be 18, sober, must run in the same direction as the bulls, and cannot let the bulls know that their deaths are imminent through interpretive dance – the running takes place through the town and injuries are pretty commonplace. Less common, but certainly not unexpectedly, deaths – typically by goring or a fatal realisation that your life has culminated in you jogging along with cows – do occur too. At the end of the run the bulls are celebrated by the crowd and are released to live their lives out in peace. No, of course not! The bulls and runners are led into an arena and are fought and killed. The Castells of Tarragona Castells are human towers formed by teams who build solid bases then add layers of people in order to place someone as high as possible, remove supporting people to leave a single human chain, then dismantle safely in order to… nobody knows. The important thing, though, is that a lot of weight ends up being supported by people and a lot of people are sufficiently high in the air that if the tower collapses – and they do – then there’s quite a distance to fall. Deaths have occurred. At festivals different teams of tower-builders often compete in brightly-coloured displays of daring and there are different tower designs depending on the number of levels a team wants to build as well as the number of people per level that is supported. A tower is considered complete when the uppermost person – the enxaneta (usually a child because it takes them longer to fall) – raises four fingers in the air to give praise to the Sky God Ugalugha, climbs down, then all the levels descend in order from the top down. At the end of the festival the losing teams of tower-builders are fought and killed. The Arizkun Festival If you were wondering if the Spanish had a festival that combined running through the streets leaping over bonfires trying not to incinerate your pubic regions as well as Wicker Man-style pagan...

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A Meeting To Discuss Killing Old People
Jun26

A Meeting To Discuss Killing Old People

Friends, I’d like to thank you for coming together at such short notice. I don’t think any of us seriously believed we’d need to meet today or under these circumstances but it is what it is and we must react to the will of the United Kingdom’s people. Or rather, as I’m sure you know, the will of our deadly enemy, the old people. Graham, calm down. Directed anger at this point will be of far more use to us. We all feel the same way but that chair did nothing to you. Well, yes, it may have been built by someone who is now old but they probably weren’t then or it would have one of those beaded seat covers on it. Right. We’ve all been determined to rid ourselves of the scourge that is old people for some time and we’ve been patient, cautious, careful. The EU vote has caught us napping. Our enemy has made a lightning attack we never foresaw and has started a financial collapse and put this country on the road to an isolationist position whilst allowing racists to become bolder. This attempt to turn the country into a scary, lonely place for everyone and not just them may not be able to be halted – I know, I’m sorry Jane but we have to honest – but we can still seek retaliatory action. Why? I can’t believe you’d ask that Jeremy. That sounds almost like giving up. Uh huh. Okay, well then, to address your devil’s advocate position it’s not cutting our losses it’s ensuring that the enemy does not seek to do more. Do you really think that those who can remember what day it is will stop now or those who can’t will comprehend what turmoil they’ve already unleashed? No, I didn’t think so. We must strike back and we must strike hard. We must give the ageing population who are waiting to fill their slippers something to consider. Which reminds me: Jeremy, when’s your birthday? A Scorpio, eh? And what year were you born? Uh huh. Thank you. No, no reason. Let’s start with Operation Buy All The Cardigans. It goes without saying that we need to step this up immediately. Obviously, we’re still relying on a harsh winter to then kill off the layer-less geriatrics and we can’t guarantee that everywhere in the UK any longer thanks to the extreme swings caused by continuing climate change but there’s really no downside to going ahead as it will boost the economy and Christ knows it’s going to need a boost. How are we going to fund this? I thought...

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