Saturday playlist, 30/04/2011

Some few favourites from the past while. And no, it is not my fault The National have a new single out.

And Now For Something Completely Unrelated!

  • I finally got around to reading Under Milk Wood by Dylan Thomas this week. It is genuinely a treat to read aloud – there’s no other way to enjoy it more. The language is just sumptuous. I’m curious as to how it can be staged instead of performed on radio as Thomas originally intended it, but I suppose Google can provide some answers to that question later. Now, I have to finish reading The Good Soldier. And properly start Private Memoirs and Confessions of a Justified Sinner. And Look Back In Anger AND We Need To Talk About Kevin. I’ll start them at some point, lads. Promise.
  • I’m going to buck trend and NOT talk about the Royal Wedding. Hah! It’s not that I don’t care, it’s just I’ve exhausted anything witty or relevant that I have to say about it…
  • Believe it or not, this is actually true. 
  • Oh yes. Glorious weather. It’s 99 season, yes?
  • I saw Moment by Deirdre Kinahan at the Town Hall Theatre last Thursday. What at first seemed to me a bog-standard kitchen sink / prodigal son story proved to be so much more – over the space of two hours this son’s arrival home and his younger sister’s reaction to it provides the ingredients for a night in which family secrets best left buried are exhumed and re-exhibited. At times witty, at times excruciating,  and Christ almighty tense as hell, I found myself fully invested.
  • And now – LOOK AT THE FEET!

    Seriously. LOOK at them.
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Record Store Day 2011. Also, damn you wind.

Was recommended this by a friend today. But just so you know, unlike the likes of Kanye West whose tweets are terrifyingly and hilariously real (I give “I just threw some kazoo on this bitch” as an example, and end at that), this is total satire. Unfortunately Patton Oswalt and the internet world don’t seem to realise this.

Also, Happy Record Store Day to you all! From my brother telling me of the festivities back home (Sligo has a decent record store in the form of Third Wave Music, which is still operating despite HMV only a minute’s walk away. If you ever find yourself up there, I heartily recommend going there. The staff’s recommendations are second to none too), I began to wonder today if Galway had an independent record store of its own. All I had heard about was HMV and Zhivago (which folded recently). If a town as small as Sligo can have one, why shouldn’t Galway?  I decided to do some research, and it appears that I am largely ignorant of this city’s history! There have been some over the past couple of years, such as Redlight Records which went bust since the last Record Store Day, but at present we do have two – Wingnut Records from inside Bell, Book and Candle, as well as The Little Room on the Spanish Arch. (also, if there’s any other record shops in Galway, do let me know. I would say something about “it’s a shame that we aren’t more informed and we need to save our record shops”, but that would require me getting onto my high horse, which given my listening and buying habits would be unwise of me to do.)

also, there’s one thing wrong with walking the Salthill prom: the bloody wind. My poor ears.

The Friday playlist – 15/04/2011

A basic rundown of what’s been on the iPod this week. Some of them are slightly bizarre, I admit.

***

Edit: I’d watch that Portishead video if I were you. I remember watching that particular video for the first time a few days before my first year Christmas exams and needless to say, it blew me away. I haven’t watched it since until now, and I really recommend YouTubing it. It’s something special, as is this one.  Christ,  I’d blog all day about Beth Gibbons and Portishead if I could.

A modest proposal

I would like to make a suggestion. Well, if I must be honest, the suggestion was made by a friend months ago, but it hasn’t been acted upon. I wish to address a crippling addiction that afflicts myself and a great deal of my friends and acquaintances.

There is a shop on Middle Street in Galway, opposite The Dáil Bar and where Mustard used to be, and up beside Sweetie Pies of Galway (have you been there? No? Then go there, the cakes are ridiculously cute) and Milano’s, and it sells books. New books. Second-hand books. Pretty books. Old books. Books on art, books on theatre, books for children, any book under the sun.

(obviously, I’m talking about Charlie Byrne’s.)

One question I’d like to ask is this: is it normal to have a bulging bookshelf made up of the books you’ve bought there over the past seven months?  Is it normal to constantly reassure myself: “ah sure, it’ll benefit my academic career in the end” after buying several books? Is it normal to have the mentality that if you haven’t bought a book (or two even. Two books there for a tenner is the usual bill for me) there at least every two weeks, there’s something wrong?

I would like to resurrect my friend Cian’s proposal that there be a support group for Charlie Byrne’s addicts. And have the meetings there in the shop, and therefore refuse to seek help for our addiction. I think that sounds about right. Who’s with me?

I just don’t know what to do with myself, or “look at me I’m using a song title to relate to a current situation”

Having finished Great Expectations, I’d love to post some kind of an analysis here – which would be pointless seeing as I haven’t carried out any secondary reading on it as of yet. Though, some of its key themes and literary devices could be dealt with in a superficial way. (Estella = representing Pip’s desire to join the upper classes? Like, wow guys, totally unclear to me!)

But what I want to talk about now is something slightly controversial to some people, classified as normal to others, and classified as just plain weird to everyone else. At this time of year, college students finish up their tutorials and lectures and prepare for their exams. They retreat into the library, where they consult articles, books and journals in a frantic attempt to become read enough in time for scary impending deadlines (or, in the case of the lackadaisical, who just go on Facebook, check out the talent who only come in there twice a year, and who think coming in at midday will definitely guarantee them a seat with added plugholes) and those pesky examinations.

That was my life last year. I spent so much time in the library reading and researching that I began to wonder would they ever consider providing me with a spare bed for the night. It’s a lifestyle that brings an odd sense of comfort. This year I’ve been on my BA Connect year, studying theatre in an applied sense – that is, actually partaking in intensive rehearsals that led to a professional production at the end. For me, it was an invaluable experience, and possibly the best experience I’ve ever had working on a play, but I have to be honest: my heart lies in academia. And so I have been feeling an odd envy towards those who are finishing up their dissertations and essays, to those who are consulting journals to use them in exam situations, and to those who are just studying.

So study week began, and I was finished for the year. Is it so wrong to miss the books that much? I imagine that I could feel a lot more differently about this come next year. Plus, to be honest, I’m not ungrateful for the opportunity to enjoy the summery weather while it’s still here. We shall see…*

*that’s a get-out clause, right there.

A generic welcoming post, if anyone ever reads these things.

‘Allo world!

Basically I shall be using this blog to pontificate, rant, whine, ponder, discuss or whatever action verb you like on anything that might be of interest. Or use it as an excuse to post pretty pictures that I find on the internet. (which I mainly do – or haven’t been doing in the past couple of months – on ismiseemer.tumblr.com)

This is just a warning, so you have time to scarper if you please…