Superburst Mixtape 01

January 29th, 2005 | music

Drawn from music I’ve recently listened to and (often) talked about here. Songs made freely available for download on the internet by the artists, put into a single file and released as a podcast mixtape. Go here to get the free iPodder podcast-catching program. The Superburst permanent location is

Superburst Mixtape 01
“I Have Known Love” – Sidecar
“Blue Hearted Fool” – The Violettes
“Death Parade” – thefireandreason

Ideas I Will Undoubtedly Steal One Day, Part Three Zillion

January 29th, 2005 | researchmaterial

Matt Webb:

Product idea of the day: iPod circuitry printed onto adhesive paper which you peel off its backing and stick round your belly, and specially constructed pills of complex organic compounds that you swallow, and as your liver breaks the chemicals down, they set up transient electromagnetic fields that are picked up by the iPod and played as songs.

Chad Michael Ward Is A Whore

January 29th, 2005 | people I know, photography

My friend the artist/photographer/writer Chad Michael Ward is selling off a pile of his books and prints on the cheap. Twenty bucks is an absolute steal for his art and photography prints. Grab one.

Good Night From The Vale Of Tears

January 29th, 2005 | brainjuice

And as Mr Radishes from the market garden stalks his rows with a urine-stained cricket bat, beating his grotesque testosterone-sprayed crops into unconsciousness for the night… the light grows low and the sky bleeds pink like the naked albino with two and a half penises that Miss Underdunn slashed to death in the women’s changing rooms with her inter-uterine device, at the end of that awful summer of dangly terror at the Public Baths…

…and the sun goes down over the Vale Of Tears, twilight’s last gleaming shining in the cracked glass eyes of Inspector Kriegfick of the local constabulary as he commences his nightly stalk of the village, blind as a bat but guided by the unmistakable musk of Crime. Not for him the transfixing, blood-flecked beauty of a Vale sunset. For him, there is only the spoor of livestock-fiddlers, wife-covetors and the murky pheremonal fog of furtive masturbators and their night manipulations…

And the sun slips under the unwashed blanket of Night, pulling the woollen covers up to its round little chin, as the men of the village drink fresh beer, the justly famous Vale Ale, from the skulls of Taxmen and Young Folk… and the landlady of the Vale’s single pub, Mrs Horrobin of the Womb And Coathanger, wriggles on the age-smooth seat of the barnacled and innard-streaked staff toilet, drinking water and making more Vale Ale for her hated, hated customers…

And the sun sinks down into the sea of black like the vicar the townsfolk caught sniffing old ladies’ bicycle seats… the only moment of true dignity the man ever had, they say, lowering manfully into Tearstain Lake with a car tied around his neck. Though he did start screaming when the Colonel’s ducks got him. The Colonel’s programme of eugenically weaponising common wildlife was the glory, awe and unutterable private shame of the county.

And the sun goes down on the Vale Of Tears, and the were-men in the forest turn themselves into ferrets and hungrily shove themselves up the back passages of the unwary, and the vegetables sing laments of the days when their mothers and fathers were uprooted and used as sex toys in dodgy videos shot in the Community Centre, and a strange, brittle and frightened peace falls across the land… and this little piece of green and pleasant England slept the kind of sleep known only to the perverted and the doomed.

Good night, children.

Good night.

((c) Warren Ellis 2004. I wrote a few of these “Vale Of Tears” pieces, and only in this last one did I nail the tone I was after to my satisfaction. Many many years ago, I’d listened to a “Lake Woebegon” piece that had this elegaic, end-of-the-day feel to it, and I was trying to glue that together with a very English kind of ugly surreality.)

Old Comics Zen

January 28th, 2005 | comics talk