Sunday, March 19, 2017

Mr. M is Our Leader

Hurray for tiny journals! AND MARKERS!

Madness (Is All In The Mind)

Madness are too effing lovely. I love them so much it makes me frustrated. I recently bought myself The Rise and Fall and finally gave it a listen and-- DUH-- it's a perfect, priceless BEAUTY. Here's a whopping injustice: it was never released in the United States. Because it's too English, probably. Marketing! Pfft! Nice try America, you philistine, but I've got e-commerce now. Ha-HA.

Anyway, my borderline deranged obsession with this sublimely talented group has resurfaced AND I OFFER NO APOLOGIES!!! Also, holy cow, they were young in their heyday. So young and so skilled. They were little, tiny babies! And I am an elderly woman. Oh well. NUTTY BOYS FOREVER!!!

"Well some men seek answers in bottles.
And others in degenerate ways.
But I don't care much for the question.
Madness is all in the mind."

Chas Smash aka Cathal Smyth aka Carl Smyth

 Suggs aka Graham McPherson

 Lee Thompson aka Kix aka El Thommo

 Bedders aka Mark Bedford

Barso aka Barzo aka Monsieur Barso aka Mike Barson

 Woody aka Dan Woodgate

 Chrissy Boy aka Chris Foreman

"But I'm not that way inclined."

Words on Paper

In the OMD documentary Souvenir, Andy McClusky talks about how he didn't want to write standard love songs. So instead the group did songs about architecture, and oil refineries, and genetic engineering, and Joan of Arc. It's a dorky, contrarian spirit that really hits home with me. They also just, in a very punk way, made sounds with whatever they could get their clever little hands on. Like a cheesy children's keyboard. Then they layered those questionable noises and turned them into soaring, yearning epics like "Enola Gay." How great is that?! Also: Andy's sick dance moves. Furthermore: "Telegraph" is an awesome concept for a song, and the promo video is chock-full of so many cool, niche, visual tidbits. Like semaphore. COME ON!

"We've got telegraph, right across this land.
It doesn't mean a damn thing.
We don't understand.
But who needs telegraph anyway?"*

*commence dubious rhythmic convulsions

Summer's Cauldron

An excuse to draw something floral! Yeah!

Another quickdraw. The XTC crew, with pastoral Skylarking theme. I love bleak, grey post-punk laments as much as the next person but in the end, I always go back to my happy-bands. Not easy-happy; complex-happy. Music that is maybe a little sad, but it's bright and smart and funny and poppy and it grabs my heart and smooshes it around. XTC is one of my absolute favorites because they are heart-smooshing extraordinaires.

"Please don't pull me out.
This is how I would want to go."


I purposely spent the start of 2017 floating safely inside a tranquil, denial-filled bubble. After the emotional beating in November (YOU know what I'm talking about), I did my best to enjoy the present before the future arrived to poop on us all. (ARGHH!) My eager ears rolled casually through the new year by sucking some Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark into The Bubble. There is so much excellent music that I didn't give a proper going over when I first found it! For example: OMD. Earnest and warm, yet distant. Lovely. A song like "Electricity" expresses its sentiment in pretty much the exact fashion that I try for in my art. It makes the band's admiration for Kraftwerk super obvious, but it's injected with a sweetness and a humanity that belongs entirely to them. It's not lazy mimicry or blathering worship. It's acknowledgment, and building. Also, general OMD thing: I adore Andy McCluskey's ridiculous dancing, which is apparently infamous within the OMD fan community. It's the nerdy, jerky cousin to Dave Gahan's seductive flailing. A+

Here is an OMD quickdraw.

"All we need to live today.
A gift for man to throw away."