Tuesday, 30 December 2008

The Falls

Thursday, 25 December 2008

The Fivehundredth

Yes well Merry Christmas and all that stuff. As a special present to you all I present my five hundredth post. Truly I have almost no life.

As you, my regular readers anyway, were all so forthcoming with your praise for this post, I thought I would do a follow up and 'release' a Christmas single (and unlike the Mint Chicks mine will be available for more than just one day).

I give you 17 October 1996, which, strangely, was the date I wrote the song. It's one of those songs which has stayed with me. There's a resonance in there somewhere. It was verging on the autobiographical then, and it still is somewhat - autobiographical in an 'if only' sense, rather than a literal sense.

And in the grand tradition of b-sides I give you Tasman Instrumental No.3, which I wrote around the same time and which happens to be the third instrumental piece I wrote while living in Tasman Street. In the grand tradition of b-sides, I've called it a demo, even though it's no more or less demo than any other track I've put up. What it is though, is a testament to my laziness, and my lack of guitar playing ability (i.e. clumsy fingers). Hence it is incomplete, broken if you will, cos I was too lazy to try and do a decent take all the way through.

Enjoy this special gift from me to you.

Monday, 22 December 2008

The Bushy

Saturday, 20 December 2008

The Leaking

Wednesday, 17 December 2008

The Metaphorical

Saturday, 13 December 2008

Sunday, 7 December 2008

The Hut

When you're doing long treks, sometimes it's nice to know there's a hut nearby.

However, as it was a reasonable day, and we were only on a day walk we didn't need to use the hut, irregardless of the fact that it was "closed for refurbishment" (or words to that effect).

But it was a nice hut, no doubt prone to the odd flood.

And here's me doing a Pardington (Neil).

Thursday, 4 December 2008

The Lost

There's a cool opening happening tomorrow. Come along. Bring your friends. It's at Suite.

I'll be there. I'll also be there on Saturday if you can't make the opening and think you may want to discuss the work with the artist.

And I suspect many people will want to discuss the work with the artist for one reason or another. Which they will discover upon seeing the work. Or maybe reading about it.

Tuesday, 2 December 2008

The Kids

There's a cool opening happening on Friday. Come along. Bring your friends. It's at Suite.

Monday, 1 December 2008

The Walk

Sadly we didn't knock the bastard off. But we did get to the foot of the bastard - the Wharepapa River.

After climbing over two ridges and dropping into two river valleys we figured it would be better to hang out in the second river valley and head back with plenty of time to spare rather than to attempt the peak and risk losing light (and energy) on the way back.

I figured it'd be a 4-5 hour trek to the top, and I wasn't far wrong. What I was wrong about was the physical exertion needed to get to the foot of the bastard.

Still, it was a great day; as any day out amongst the birds and the trees and the rivers and the stinging nettles is.

This was shot from a saddle overlooking where we were headed. However having forgotten to bring the map, we didn't actually know that at the time.

This is the bed of the Wharepapa River, not far from the Wharepapa Hut. Not the nicest river I've seen, but its propensity for violent flooding was readily apparent.

And looking the other way.

What sometimes happens if you stay in one place for long enough is that the low cloud you didn't really want burns off and you start being able to see more.

What sometimes happens if you stay in one place for long enough is that the low cloud you didn't really want burns off and you can actually see where you intended going. However having forgotten to bring the map, we couldn't actually confirm that at the time.

And finally a shot of Papatahi from the ridge above the Wharepapa Hut.

Nice. One day we'll maybe actually knock that bastard off. However it's more likely to be a two dayer. Maybe even a three dayer.

Wednesday, 26 November 2008

The Wasted

So feeling on a bit of a high after completing the housework, what's left to do?

Put dinner on. Sit down and write a review. Check on dinner occasionally. Eat dinner. Download software. Record a couple of songs while largely ignoring the Johnny Cash film on TV.

So here we are following up on a long forgotten threat.

A Side.
I wrote this in May 1996. After my band had called it quits - not that we really called it quits officially, we just stopped playing together. But before I went overseas. And long before Gillian Welch put out a similarly themed track. I can't remember if I wrote it to be performed as I have done here, or if in fact it was actually meant to rock.

It is by no means the best song I've written. But it was an easy one to butcher.

Being the first time I've multitracked on my laptop, and that it's not exactly set up for recording, it has a very lofi sound. Duplicated tracks to fill out the sound, a second track of vocals, some lead guitar twiddly bits, and really bad percussion played on the back of a ukulele. And being so hi tech the software has a recording lag so new tracks have to be tweaked into sync. Sometimes it works. Sometimes not. But fabulous.

B Side.
Written by a friend way back around 1993 at a guess. Arguably it's not the best song he wrote either. But it is the most me song he wrote, and an easy one for me to butcher. I haven't played it for I don't know how long, and I couldn't find the lyrics so they're wrong. And the singing is bad. Truly.

This is just guitar and vocals recorded together then duplicated. Rocking.

I think I need a proper microphone. And to fix my amplifier and guitar and hotcake. And to learn the software. And to spend too many hours wasting too much time recording myself for no good reason.

Saturday, 22 November 2008

The Simple

There are simple pleasures in life.

Many simple pleasures. Some simpler than others.

Today, for example, I had the simple pleasure of doing much needed housework while singing merrily along to various US indie rock alt folk country pop bands (for want of a better description).

It was simple. And it was a pleasure. Not least cos it means I now have a clean house again.

Here's what two months of microphen dust and stuff looks like.

Wednesday, 19 November 2008

The Orange

I spent last weekend in Wanganui. It was good fun. Lots of photos taken (though few by me). Lots of good company, good food, and good drink.

This was Friday night. On the balcony. With bbq. Lovely evening. Photo by Dean. Lovely guy. Of me and Jonty. Lovely kid.

And if you're wondering, the sole light source was a big anti-insect candle, and a multi-second exposure. Lovely shot.

Sunday, 16 November 2008

The Super

Saturday, 8 November 2008

The Democrat

It's not very much fun being sick for over a week.

Especially when it's family birthday week.

Especially when you start feeling better only to be struck by something worse.

Especially when you have other things you should be concentrating on.

But it did mean I got to sit at home and watch TV One's US election coverage. Until I realised there was going to be 5 hours of waffle before any real news came through.

But yesterday I got drugs. And today I got to buy myself birthday presents. Yay.

And today I got to vote.

And it reminded me of this (another patented Andy Palmer snappy title) Portrait of the artist as he participates in the democratic process.

Clearly 24 July 2002 was a cold miserable day.

Later that night a couple of mates came around to watch the results come through. One of us voted for ACT. It wasn't me. And I didn't think I had any friends who swung that far right. It's surprising what you learn at election time.