leynos: (Suzumiya Haruhi no Yuuutsu)
I listened to another CD today that I haven't listened to in a long time. Painting It Red by The Beautiful South. Once again, lyrics that, before, I could never have truly understood, now actually mean something and plainly bear a weight of truth. It's kind of re-assuring, in a fucked up way, to hear that people twice my age still make the same idiotic mistakes. But it also says that people do fall in love, and love lasts beyond passion. In that kind of context, not sugar coated, but acknowledging what goes wrong, it sounds believable.

Not that I'd trust myself ever again with the feelings of another human being, but it makes one despair that little bit less for humanity.
leynos: (Ladytron)
Learn to beatmatch, for fuck's sake.

Please note: Having a laptop and a hard drive full of MP3s does not make you a DJ. If you can't be bothered to learn how to use a pair of decks, at least try to explore the artistic potential of your chosen medium.

There are good laptop DJs out there. The one playing on Saturday at Bastard wasn't one of them.
leynos: (Cooking Mama)
I followed [livejournal.com profile] stormsearch's recipe suggestion:

Er... That's:

  • 1 onion
  • 1 red pepper
  • A handful of apricots
  • A handful of dates
  • A sprinkling of sultanas
  • 4 chicken drumsticks
  • A dusting of nutmeg
  • Lots of Pinot Grigio

In the oven at 150 C for 3 hours or there-abouts.

Servers 2

It's very sweet, so I may have to tone something down next time I try, but otherwise, very tasty.

This week, I've also made lamb casserole (which just seemed to get better with each passing day) and the spaghetti bolognese of death (with spectacular spaghetti provided by [livejournal.com profile] scotm

I want to try making a risotto soon. (And yes, I'm still eating my dinner at my desk. Why do you think I was so insistent on a comfy office chair?)

The rest of the evening was spent reading volume 15 of Fruits Basket to Mozart piano concertos.
leynos: (Default)
Here's a nice little non-dilema for you: Buy the song "Parklife" by Blur on iTunes for 79p, or buy a pristine copy of the whole album second hand on Amazon for two quid?

I don't know why I ever stopped buying CDs.

Wha fu?!

Mar. 6th, 2007 09:45 pm
leynos: (Cooking Mama)
I had a dream last night where my cat had learned to talk. Not in a Salem Saberhagen kind of way, but as you'd imagine a cat attempting to speak would sound. She didn't seem to have much in the way of practical wisdom to impart tho.

The whole thing freaked me out. Especially when, upon waking, I was still in that half dreaming stage where one is willing to believe anything. A tad phased, I fired up Google and set about looking for cases of cats having been taught to vocalize English phrases. The reality isn't nearly as impressive as that conjured up by my mind.

Also today, I spent £200 on a pair of prescription sunglasses with ballistic lenses. They should do fine for the airsoft, hillwalking and snowboarding, so hopefully that'll be money well spent.

And I've booked a couple of days off work for seeing Lostprophets in Glasgow with Afroduck (reciprocity for him having gone to see Placebo with me, I guess).
leynos: (QR Code)
A long time ago, [livejournal.com profile] colicub gave me an "R." I then had to pick 10 songs beginning with that letter. I got kind of sidetracked. ^^;

Goldfrapp - Ride A White Horse
Atari Teenage Riot - Revolution Action
Pink Floyd - Run Like Hell
REM - Radio Song
Public Image Ltd - Rise
Queen - Radio Ga Ga
Radiohead - Ripchord
Freezepop - Robotron 2000
Kraftwerk - Radioaktivität
The Shamen - Re:Evolution

You can have a letter too, if you want.
leynos: (Default)
I saw Placebo at the SECC on Wednesday night. That's another of my life's ambitions out of the way.

leynos: (Default)
I went to the Societies Fair today, and joined AASoc, Compsoc, GEAS and EDG&R. Actually, I think that's more societies than I normally joined whilst at University. Someday, I will have to move on, but that day hasn't come yet.


Cannae wait.


Aug. 16th, 2006 12:16 am
leynos: (Default)
Sherrybaby, starring Maggie Gyllenhaal was the first film I saw at the first film I saw at the Festival, and a fantastic start. This is a story about people. Specifically, about a person struggling to change, those who doubt her, and those who come to understand her. Many films parade the description "brutally honest," while being shameless exercises in shock. Sherrybaby tells its story with stark honesty, deftly walking this line between reality and shock. Gyllenhaal's performance is stellar, at once captivating and transparent. Similarly, the rest of the cast convey feeling in that flawless way that lets us forget that we are watching a movie. It's a joy to be reminded what pleasure can be derived from a film when cast, screenwriter and director bring their talents to bear in harmony.

I hope that the Festival continues in this vein.


"Frog Pocket, Final Brass Rabbi, Vinyl Vandal & maybe more @ the Forest hippy fuckface art bollocks cafe, Thurs 24th, starting 12midnight, free."

Hmmm... Should I or shouldn't I? I think I will.
leynos: (Default)
On a whim, I went to see a fringe show on Sunday—Katie Targett-Adams playing at the Hallion. This consisted of Katie on the harp, accompanied by a three-piece jazz band, resulting in a rather intriguing fusion of style. Quite beautiful at times in fact. She didn't just stick to celtic style, in fact, on a few songs she sang without the harp at all. She also pulled off a pretty convincing Jessica Rabbit impersonation at one point. In the final song, she duetted with a female jazz vocalist who is playing at the same venue on alternate night, to delightfully off-beat effect.

The Hallion is apparently a private members club who have opened their doors to the public during the festival. Though based on the quality of the bar, I don't think I'd want to join. Besides, I have the Whisky Society already.

After a pleasantly decedent dinner at Rick's I met up with *censored* for a drink or two at her invitation. I'm pleased to report that I didn't collapse into a puddle of tears this time. I hope we can maybe be friends again without me fucking things up.
leynos: (Default)
As the man said, it would be pretty hard not for me to like Renaissance. It's French and it's film noir. Well, neo noir, to be pedantic. What else can one say? It looks like animated Sin City. It's set in a world equal parts Blade Runner and Phantom of the Opera. The characters talk like escapees from Ghost In The Shell. The action scenes rival those in Shirow's film, too. It has its fair share of dames and femme fatales. And its pacing is somewhat akin to Akira.

Oops. I just described it entirely in terms of other films. Oh well. See it anyway. It's teh roxor.


Cheers to pajh for urging my on to trying Petit Paris. Lovely food.

It's all part of my plan to try all of the restaurants I've been reading about in The List, and dreaming about dining in. It probably involves drinking a lot too, of course.


Dirty Husband, Edinburgh's very own attention-defecit-special-needs-core duo have put out a four track EP. And it's free.

Dead Anyway

Aug. 1st, 2006 11:58 pm
leynos: (Default)
I remembered a dream for a change.

I've had dreams where windows onto reality (eg, television screens) suddenly become the reality, but dreams told in 2nd person don't happen to me very often.

It starts looking through what appears to be the sights of a bomber. It's all in green night vision. I'm looking down at a city. The city is dark. People are running through the alley ways and across bridges over canals etc. Then it cuts to cross-sections of the city, highlighting the structure of the drainage system. Info tags appear next to the fleeing denizens of the city, outlining their medical condition. They're dying of radiation sickness.

Now I see through the eyes of one of these poor people. I can't feel any pain as best as I can tell. But the place is horrible. Open sewers, rats everywhere, rotting corpses, the like. It reminds me a little of Syndicate crossed with Dark City.

After running for a time, I come to a gate in a chainlink fence that appears to be walling off part of the city. The gate is open, and rats are running through in their hundreds. There is a guard standing next to the gate in green cammo. I complain to him about the rats. The guard is me (the me telling this story, not the me seeing this scene). He says, "Never mind, they're dead anyway. Just like you."

Unperturbed, I headed on into the compound. The one thing I remember, before waking up was a couple of tattered posters, plastered with yellowing selotape. One advertising "antique" Pokémon figurines, starting at US$2000 each. Another selling videotapes of old TV shows. A recording of Howard Stern interviewing Suze Randall was selling for US$4000. God knows why.

The place looked like some form of refugee community, but I didn't get any chance to explore, as my alarm went off at this point.

If Fashion Is Your Trade...

Then when you're naked, I guess you must be unemployed, yeah.

I listened to Different Class for the first time through in years. It still shines with vibrancy. What I forget about are the tracks like Pencil Skirt and Live Bed Show that whilst not anthems, are still fantastic songs. There aren't any bad songs on that album.

I've changed a lot in the past two years. The way I understand these songs tells me this more than anything. I know what F.E.E.L.I.N.G.C.A.L.L.E.D.L.O.V.E. really means now. I know what the sensations described in Sorted Out For Es and Whizz are like in reality. Life lived through Pulp songs as an eighteen year old isn't all that far removed from the truth.

The rainbow coloured harmony between Korg and guitar will never die.
leynos: (Default)
I received two rather noteworthy telephone calls today.

The first was from my Dad, to say that my Granddad had suffered a stroke. Thankfully, I'm told, the doctors don't anticipate any serious lasting effects. None the less, he is in hospital for the time being, and it must be quite an ordeal for him and my Gran. My Dad says he'll keep me up to date with what's going on. My Granddad influenced me a lot in my early life, and in good part, I have him to thank for my interest in computers and technology. Hearing this news reminded me that he won't be around forever, and despite his flaws, I should never let him and my Gran drift away, now more than ever. I really hope that he recovers as fully as possible.

The other call was from Ho-Il, who phoned to let me know that he had passed his exams, and will be moving to America in August. I told him about my new job, so we both had something to congratulate each other for. He says he'll be returning to Edinburgh in a year's time, so I'll be looking forward to seeing him again.

Splash Damage

The rest of the weekend brought much joy.

On Saturday morning, I joined some of my former workmates in an outing to the skirmish paintball centre. This was all a good laugh. Most of the games involved capturing a batton from the opposing team, with battlefields laid out in a variety of configurations. The first, a mock urban wasteland put both teams on an even footing, and five minutes of infinite lives gave everyone a chance to familiarize themselves with the paintball marker guns.

Being shot doesn't actually hurt as much as I'd expected. At a distance at any rate. One of our party received a really evil looking bruise on her shoulder after being hit at three metres. The brief moments of discomfort however were far outweighed by the excitement of the mock warfare.

More complicated battlefields included an assault on an island being held by the opposing team. Chris managed to surprise everyone, including the supervisors, by sneaking in the back way and catching everyone unawares, while the rest of his team were being mowed down in ineffectual rush attempts. Seeing him storm the base impressed the hell out of me. It was like watching something from Counter Strike played out in real life.

Chris says it's airsoft next for us.

Disco Sucks

Fever at Ego, once again, provided a quality night out, with the kind of techno that gets inside your head and won't let you stop dancing until you drop.

Possibly taking club accessories too far, but we love it anyway

Stuart and Fraser from my old work both made it along, so I wasn't lonely. Trying to catch both of them in the same room together was a bit of a challenge. I don't think I actually got them rounded up until around 2 AM. But it all worked out in the end, which made me happy.

I finally snarfed one of the DJ set CDs too. W00t. Something nice for my MP3 player.

After Fever, I followed Stuart and his gang to a party in a flat on Dundas Street. This being one of those parties where no-one knows anyone else, nor whose flat it actually is. Quite amusing. Anyway, the place was massive. More like a mansion than a flat. The only disappointment being that we didn't stay too long. A couple of DJs from the quarry party were just setting up as we left, but I think the polite thing to do was to stick with the people who got me here.

A second party took us to 6 AM, but by this time, I was reduced to sitting in the corner nodding. I finally got home and to bed at 8 AM.

The Best Place

It's been a while since I last visited the Listening Room, the open mic night on Sundays in the Blazer. I couldn't stay for the whole thing, owing to being completely knackered, but what I did here was worth it.

Chris Brown played two new songs, both top quality hymns that take one away to another place.

Frank "Freeloader" Titterton performed an amusing gripe about bluebottles pestering him during the long summers. Complete with a kazoo to emulate the buzzing.

A two piece band, Confushion played three lively country numbers, augmented, rather distinctively, with what I took to be a mandolin.
leynos: (Default)
There were clothing stalls at Dark City. And I got to meet Jed Phoenix. :o And I bought:


There were quite a few designers there actually. Much as I like browsing in Cabaret, it's always a pleasure to see something different. Supernal's Syndicate-esque trenchcoats really did it for me. Shame I'm not in the market for one atm. Psyclone also have a t-shirt waiting for me. Apparently, they sell a lot more men's stuff in their shop than they did at the stall. Sadly, I shall have to wait until their web site is up.

In case I don't get around to writing about it properly, I'll just have to mention that [livejournal.com profile] combichrist rocked my world (and just about everyone else's). A hall full of goths going crazy is not a sight easily forgotten.

Insekt put on the second best show of the weekend IMO, with a perfectly judged set of tunes that drew the crowd into a frenzied orgy of dance and just didn't let go.

XPQ-21 seemed to borrow most of their best bass-lines from The Prodigy, but that didn't make their show any less fun. I just worry about the longevity of any band that can be described in terms of "it's like x crossed with y, on crack."

And of the weekend's club nights, I declare Ascension the winner. Good lord, the DJs on the final night were playing stuff that bordered on handbag house.
leynos: (Default)
The festival opened well, apart from a short interlude when someone set a fire alarm off. Three bands played last night: Trauma Pet, Glis and Panzer AG. Trauma Pet did their best to imitate Goldfrapp, but didn't really pull it off. Glis produced some very dancable EBM, to which the crowd duly obliged. Panzer AG put on a driving set of industrial metal, the blending of genres feeling excitingly fresh at times and just down right rawking at others.

I left at two, due to an early start today, but I got to enjoy a good bit of hard industrial in the Underground, populated by Kryogenix from Nottingham. The DJs played a fair bit of music that diverged from what I've grown used to from the Edinburgh clubs, similarly the different crowd brought in by the festival proved to be even more crazy than usual. The Terrace bar still looks like a school disco.

More (bad) photos... )

Panzer AG
leynos: (Default)
Just wondering. Is anyone I know going to Dark City this weekend?
leynos: (Default)
I handed in my letter of resignation this past Thursday. My contract with my employer ends June 16th. I'm hoping that I'll be able to get away earlier though, as I have five and a half days of annual leave left to take. In preparation for my newly unemployed status, I have update my CV and list of referees. I've also been accumulating the contact details of as many recruitment agencies as I can.


I was supposed to be investigating content management systems for the PSC this weekend. Instead, I spent most of my time fighting with PHP and MySQL. And losing. The CMS chosen by their website admin does indeed seem like overkill for what they are wanting to do with it. On the other hand, Narada's suggestion of Wordpress doesn't really seem to fit the bill either, as it doesn't seem to have any reasonable means of managing a non-trivial number of pages. But Wordpress does have familiarity and a plethora of ready-built templates and plugins going for it.

Apart from that, I've watched a lot of The West Wing of late.

My flatmates threw a party last night, which consisted of watching Eurovision followed by a lot of drunken conversation. One of their friends brought his iPod, which served as the entertainment for the night, although his taste in music failed, in the opinion of my flatmates, to be cheesy enough for the proceedings. I got to sneak some Pink Floyd on the system eventually, and we finished the evening by talking about cinema over the bottles of fake Smirnoff Ice that had sat mysteriously in the fridge for the past six months.


The Budapest Symphony Orchestra playing at the Usher Hall
leynos: (Default)
Ballboy are fan-fucking-tastic live. The energy in their songs heard in person is simply overwhelming. Or it could have just been my excitement at seeing for the first time the people who performed the music that I have grown to love over these years. Well, either way, I had fun.

They played an almost entirely electric set, made up of songs from their three principal albums with slightly more lifted from the first, Club Anthems 2001. I've yet to hear their third electric album, Royal Theatre, so I got to experience those songs played live first. The biggest surprise came in the form of the electric version of Olympic Cyclist, which to the best of my knowledge isn't on any of their CDs. Satisfyingly, I also got to stand right at the front.

Ballboy deliver music that has a rare honesty to it. Gordon McIntyre's lyrics talk of love and ambition in a way that is not the stuff of dreams, but instead makes the mundane and ordinary seem beautiful. They capture the energy and magic that is inherent in everything we do and somehow realize it as song. Tales of the small successes and the seemingly unscalable plateaus in life are married perfectly with a kinetic rhythm that that makes you want to just do something.

Before Ballboy, support act King Bear put on an impressive show. Their off-colour blend of wailing guitars and green-tinged synth shrieks offering something unique and memorable. I'm thankful for the introduction to this band.

Being as this was, the night after the Scottish cup final, the Gorgie carnival was out in full force. Chants of, "We're shit and we won the cup," to the tune of Go West filled the Grassmarket. It always makes for an interesting night, but preferably watched from behind glass. The 'Blazer, a welcoming establishment at the best of times, has a pretty low tolerance for football supporters, so it provided such a suitable vantage point.

Another fun thing about the 'Blazer is watching the perplexed look on punters' faces as they are informed that Jack Daniels and Baccardi aren't sold there. "We've got forty-five different rums. You don't have to drink Morgans, you know."

My bedroom is disturbingly tidy right now. Not just in an "omfg, you actually have a carpet" kind of way, but you can even see some of the walls too. I give it three days before it reverts back to the way it was.
leynos: (Default)
Cash Generator used to bring me so much joy. Super rare SNES games for a fiver etc. These days, it's really only good for a laugh. Case in point: Today, I saw a famiclone shaped like an N64 priced at ten pounds, sitting next to a real N64 selling for only five pounds more. On the other hand, Chris texted me to say that he'd snarfed a one gig Memorystick Pro Duo for thirty-five quid, so I guess they're not that bad after all. I also learned that my Japanese Nintendogs is worth the princely sum of one pound sterling as trade-in at Chips.

I've got minus fifty pence to do me until a week next Tuesday. But that's not really bothering me. What is bothering me is the creeping sociophobia I've been experiencing. I'm afraid to talk to my friends these days. I'm afraid to do anything that will put me in contact with people. The change in scene brought about by the trip to London helped, but now that I've returned, it's the same again. I was afraid of my therapist last time I visited too. In the same way I was afraid of my driving instructor, or some of the kendo sempai. If it happens again, I'll let him know.

I'm going to see Ballboy play tonight. Fun fact: Ballboy are my fifth favourite band evar. I'm looking forward to it.
leynos: (Default)
I spent yesterday evening in town, doing my best to chill out. A curry was enjoyed at the mosque, a pint of Coors downed at Centraal, and a pot of ginger and lemongrass tea savoured in the Forest. I also managed to purchase a ticket for Ballboy's concert tomorrow night at the Liquid Room. I should add that Coors is rather delicious, very clean tasting and refreshing, with a subtle maltiness to it.

All of this was in aid of a planned meeting with Scottie later in the evening. A restauranteur acquaintance of his had tasked him with delivering a bespoke point of sale solution, and I had been offered the opportunity to assist. So we talked about possible means and software designs, and examined available hardware and ready-built solutions. We envisaged waiters taking orders on tablet computers and database driven backends doing crazy wacked things with statistics.

I'd like to help out if I can, because it is some time since I've had any opportunity to do any real programming.

Speaking of opportunity, I have a job interview on Monday. The first in a while, since I postponed my job hunt on account of the therapy I'm undergoing. This is for a helpdesk operator / registration administrator for the e-commerce web site at the bank I work for. It should be interesting, but I don't have a lot of confidence right now. I know where I'm going wrong, but I just don't feel I have it in me to fix the problems. Still, I think I have better stories to tell the interviewer than I did a few months ago. The last month at work has been surprisingly eventful.

I do like the prospect of working closer to the town centre. Well, to be precise, I like the prospect of working across the road from the Blue Blazer.


leynos: (Default)

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