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K’lee and Dale’s Cosmic Photo Challenge…

I missed Stream of Consciousness Sunday yesterday, because I got caught up in working on our new garden with Rhonda, but I did manage to do some photographic tinkering for today’s edition of K’lee and Dale’s Cosmic Photo Challenge.

I picked Faces for the theme this week and I had originally been thinking; Hmmm, what else has a face..?, which led me to create this…

…but Audrey and I went to the Pride celebrations in Bideford on Saturday, where she had her face painted and we went on the Waltzer together, (about which, more in a moment) so I thought I’d turn these two photos…

…into this surreal composite image.

Audrey is currently obsessed with all manner of screechingly annoying teenage YouTube “stars” and is always excited at any chance to play at being a YouTuber herself, so she was thrilled when I uploaded this video of the two of us on the Waltzer on Saturday.

I apologise for the clip being shot in the incorrect aspect ratio, (usually a pet peeve of mine) but it was hard enough to hold my phone steady as it was, what with Audrey alternately laughing and screaming in my ear the whole time.

And to tie into the whole faces theme, she pulls a very comprehensive selection for the camera.
Enjoy.

K’lee has a link to his post HERE.

Now show us what you have to offer.
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To get involved with the challenge, post a photo to your blog on Monday, add a pingback to this post (or to K’lee’s) and don’t forget to tag your post #CosPhoChal.

Alternatively, add a link to your blog in the comments of either mine or K’lee’s post and we’ll come and check out your entry.
Any and all effects, editing, Photoshop, Instagram, morphing, collages or whatever other post production techniques you fancy are permitted, (in fact, they’re actively encouraged!) so get creative and turn your photos into artworks for the Cosmic Photo Challenge.
#CosPhoChal

 

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Let reason be your anchor…

I firmly believe the average person in the British Muslim community is outraged by the sort of atrocity we saw in Manchester last night, in which at least 22 people died and 60 were injured, in the same way any Christian, Hindu, Jewish, Buddhist or atheist person with a shred of human decency would be; because none of these philosophies condone the senseless killing of innocent people.

But I expect the headline-hungry media will use this new attack, targeted at kids enjoying a night out, to stoke the fires of hate and suspicion which seem to be smouldering beneath the surface of the world’s psyche at the moment, encouraging division and distrust in communities who do so much to promote multicultural harmony and tolerance.

I fully accept there are a small minority of radical and violent members within any community and I am not naive enough to think for a minute there aren’t also a minority of supposed genuine Muslims who, while not applauding the actions of whoever was responsible for last night’s terrible crime, may not be as progressive in their beliefs as some.

But that doesn’t change the fact that the ones perpetuating the violence are doing so by citing archaic and outdated tenets of a faith which has in recent times, made significant steps in its efforts to more successfully integrate with Western society.
In the same way as there are far right Christian groups who espouse ideas about ethnic and sexual cleansing, take the word of the Bible unbendingly literally, forbid the teaching of evolution, ban abortion and birth control and are generally anything but inclusive and tolerant.
Nobody with any sense would say these “Christians” are living by the general principals of their alleged religion, they’re just cherry-picking outmoded views and debunked superstitious nonsense for their own twisted motives.

I personally don’t hold with the views of any organised religion which go much further than; “Be nice, it doesn’t cost anything. Don’t be a dick and, if you do, expect to get treated like a dick in return”, but we need to recognise when the ones who are doing the killing and spreading the hate are doing so for misguided motives of their own and do not speak for the vast majority of those they CLAIM to represent.

Stop The Hate, it’s up to us.

 

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#atozchallenge: V is for Vibraphone…

It’s time for some music on the #atozchallenge, because I couldn’t do a B to Z of Twin Peaks without including Angelo Badalamenti, the multi-instrumentalist composer whose soundtrack gives the show it’s distinctive atmosphere.

Unfortunately, the B post was already taken by King Tuck himself, Billy Zane, so I’ve had to include Angelo by way of one his trademark sounds, the Vibraphone.

To this end, I bring you something of an exclusive; I have tracked down (pun intended, obviously) a vibraphone only version of Audrey Horne‘s languorous and “too dreamy” theme, Freshly Squeezed, from an extensive archive of Badalamenti/Lynch tunes from Twin Peaks and other projects.

To enable me to share it with you, I have uploaded it to YouTube, as the soundtrack to an Audrey photo montage.

So here, for your viewing and listening pleasure, is one minute forty two seconds of cool jazz, with Angelo on vibes and Audrey on virginal smouldering.

Niiiiice.

#atozchallenge: V is for Vibraphone.

 
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Posted by on April 26, 2017 in A - Z challenge, Music, TV, Twin Peaks, Video

 

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#atozchallenge: U is for Umbrellas…

Ok, I admit it, the “U” post in this year’s #atozchallenge has got me stumped, so I’m having to really scrape the most tenuous link from the bottom of of my B to Z of Twin Peaks barrel.

But I found something.

After rejecting Undercover as being too generic, (despite Dale and Ed’s excursion as a pair of vacationing “oral surgeons”) and Uncle (which is what Maddy Ferguson called Leland Palmer) because, well, that’s just a bit too tenuous, even by my standards, I decided the best I could do was Umbrellas.

Why umbrellas, you ask?

Because, during the Miss Twin Peaks beauty pageant, the town’s prospective beauty queens perform a dance routine with, you guessed it, twirling umbrellas.

(Thanks to Christian Hartleben for help sourcing a decent screen shot)

As a bonus and because I’ve already made the link to Miss Twin Peaks, here’s a minor subplot character, Lana Budding-Milford, played by Robyn Lively, performing a dance of “contortionistic jazz exotica”, whatever that is.

#atozchallenge: U is for Umbrellas.

 
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Posted by on April 25, 2017 in A - Z challenge, TV, Twin Peaks

 

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#atozchallenge: N is for Nadine…

Today, to start the third full week of #atozchallenge posts, I’m giving a place in my B to Z of Twin Peaks to one of the most consistently bonkers and oddball characters in the show.

One of the things that makes Twin Peaks such an immersive experience, is the way the supporting cast of disparate characters and their overlapping storylines are woven into the main plot, infusing the whole series with a unique atmosphere which is distinctly Lynchian.

Nadine Hurley is the wife of gas station owner and Bookhouse Boy, Big Ed Hurley and we discover early on that she has some interesting…quirks, for want of a better word.

Loud, brash, prone to extreme mood swings, fond of surreal non sequiturs and sporting an eye patch, the first time we see Nadine she is berating the long-suffering Ed for not helping with her latest brilliant idea; silent drape runners.

We soon discover that Ed and Nadine’s marriage is a strange and fragile thing, events tragically coming to a head as a result of the same obsession with silencing those pesky drape runners.

And after that, Nadine’s story gets even more peculiar.

Anyway here she is, bumping into Norma Jennings, (by coincidence, Big Ed’s mistress) on her way to add the final vital component to her invention.

#atozchallenge: N is for Nadine.

 
 

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K’lee and Dale’s Cosmic Photo Challenge…

Today’s bank holiday edition of K’lee and Dale’s Cosmic Photo Challenge should be child’s play, because I chose the theme of; Toys.

I thought it was only fitting that I got input from the person who the toys belonged to, so Audrey provided Instagram shots of some of the ones she found most photogenic, whereas I…well, I did some strange things with dolls’ heads.

You have been warned.

First, Audrey’s artistic interpretations, from small (and not so small) stuffed animals, to a Scooby Doo monster and some sort of hopping rabbit/chick hybrid.

And now my contribution. I started off with some dolls like these…

…then, as if dolls’ heads weren’t weird enough, I did this to them:

I hope that wasn’t too traumatic for you, check out something less unnerving from K’lee HERE.
But now it’s time for you to come out to play.

*****

As an extra holiday bonus for you, here’s the excellent movie, The Magic Toyshop.

*****

To get involved with the challenge, post a photo to your blog on Monday, add a pingback to this post (or to K’lee’s) and don’t forget to tag your post #CosPhoChal.
Alternatively, add a link to your blog in the comments of either mine or K’lee’s post and we’ll come and check out your entry.

Any and all effects, editing, Photoshop, Instagram, morphing, collages or whatever other post production techniques you fancy are permitted, (in fact, they’re actively encouraged!) so get creative and turn your photos into artworks for the Cosmic Photo Challenge.

#CosPhoChal

 

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#atozchallenge: G is for Gordon…

 

Today’s rather late entry for the #atozchallenge is a celebration of one of my favourite David Lynch creations; himself.

Because the sixth time we delve into my B-Z of Twin Peaks we find FBI Regional Bureau Chief Gordon Cole, played by, you guessed it, David Lynch.

One of the most endearing things about Twin Peaks is the way moments of innocent and absurd comedy produce a welcome counterpoint to the darker themes, Lynch’s character being one of the prime examples of this comic relief. He apparently took Cole’s name from a minor character in 1950’s Sunset Boulevard, one of his favourite movies.

Gordon Cole is Special Agent Dale Cooper’s immediate superior and initially only appears as a voice on a phone speaker, albeit a very loud one. The reason for this becomes clear when Cole finally arrives in town; he is severely deaf and wears two hearing aids, meaning that he TALKS AT FULL VOLUME ALL THE TIME! and constantly mishears people, leading to some great comic moments.

The reason for Gordon’s deafness is never really addressed, although he does say at one point is that “it’s a long story” . But there is a twist; in one of the scenes from the show that still makes me laugh out loud even now, after all the times I’ve seen it.
Here’s FBI Bureau Chief Gordon Cole meeting “miraculous” waitress Shelley Johnson for the first time, ordering some of that famous cherry pie.

#atozchallenge: G is for Gordon.

 
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Posted by on April 8, 2017 in A - Z challenge, Blogging, TV, Twin Peaks

 

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March of the Internet Nobody, day twenty five: Melodic Randomiser Unspooled, part lots…

Time for your final (for now) weekend dose of Melodic Randomiser Unspooled, my semi-regular lucky dip into the musical gems that live in their little plastic boxes under the stairs.

Today’s selection brings together early sampling, rough edged 1970’s pub rock and ’90s dance superstars, all from the UK.

First up, something from the Crew Cuts compilation, a 1984 collection of breakthrough hip hop pioneers which includes this classic cut and paste masterpiece, Beat Box by Trevor Horn’s Art of Noise

…then we go back to 1978 for an entire album of raw rock and roll from Johnny Kidd‘s former backing band, The Pirates, here’s Skull Wars

…and we finish up with arguably one of the most important bands from the ’90s dance scene; Underworld and Pearl’s Girl.


Hope you enjoyed that, stick around, there’s another quick bonus post coming up soon…

 
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Posted by on March 25, 2017 in Melodic Randomiser, Music

 

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March of the Internet Nobody, day eighteen: Melodic Randomiser Unspooled, part many…

As I predicted last weekend, a Melodic Randomiser Unspooled post is the easiest way to fulfill my daily blogging duties on a Saturday, so join with me in enjoying some more nostalgic musical treasures from the boxes of cassettes under the stairs.

Today we have another eclectic selection that spans the decade when music was going through a paradigm shift, due to the increasing use of electronically created music. Everyone from prog rock stalwarts to ex-punks were experimenting with the huge range and variety of music that could be achieved using synthesizers, incorporating exciting new textures and sounds into their existing oeuvre, enabling them to stay relevant in this brave new world of musical exploration.

The first of today’s cryptic triptych is from one of those prog bands who narrowly avoided being eclipsed by the new wave of cutting edge electronic bands by embracing new sounds into a back catalogue already rife with elaborate synthesizer noodling; Yes.

Drama was released as the decade began and was the album when production genius and keyboard whiz Trevor Horn came onboard, after founder member Rick Wakeman departed the band, blending their trademark flamboyant style with shinier production and a sleeker, more modern sound.

And here you can enjoy the full album in all its dramatic glory.


Then we have a band who grew from the ashes of proto-goth punks, Bauhaus and honed their sound into a mellower, more melodic style as Love and Rockets and this is their Seventh Dream of Teenage Heaven album, released slap bang in the middle of the ’80s.

Here is The Dog-end of a Day Gone By.

Lastly and not at all leastly, one of the pioneers of UK electronic music in ’80s, Depeche Mode, who were making sparse, bleepy pop when Yes released Drama but by 1990 had matured into an edgy and decidedly darker band, Violator being a massive critical and commercial success for them, beginning a debauched and reckless few years during which frontman Dave Gahan actually died twice.

This is their huge worldwide hit, Enjoy the Silence.

Well I don’t know about you, but that certainly brought back some memories.
Tune in for this month’s final edition of Melodic Randomiser Unspooled next weekend.

There’s a bonus post coming up later, so watch out for that and I’ll see you tomorrow for SoCS and whatever I think of to do on my day off.

Cheerio.

 
 

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March of the Internet Nobody, day eleven: And another thing…

Since I’m on the subject of music and as I’m on a posting binge anyway, I thought I’d share a new music recommendation with you.

I downloaded this album ridiculously early this morning whilst working overtime (during a break, obviously, health and safety fans) and have only just finished listening to it now.

If you like a bit of well executed modern space rock, with vocal harmonies, bursts of playful bounciness and a track that could be a distant cousin to Black Sabbath’s Planet Caravan, then this might be for you.

This self-titled release is the first full length outing from Holy Monitor, who hail from Athens in Greece, following two EPs in the last couple of years. If you have even a passing interest in new psychedelic rock, then you’d be doing yourself a disservice if you didn’t check them out, which you can do in full, right here.

You are, once again, welcome.

 
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Posted by on March 11, 2017 in Blogging, Music, Video

 

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