Showing posts from December, 2012

On the streets where I live

So, I managed to get out for a walk on Christmas Day, despite my very sore back (slipped disc), and the incessant attentions of my two children. I didn't venture far, partly because the light wasn't going to last long, and partly because neither was my poor back.

My aim was to shoot the chilled nature of that particular area, and I think the shots do feel quiet and peaceful. Warm too as the light softened towards sunset. I particularly like the light in the wall... flowers shot, and the orange filter of the sunset photos.

Top 20...

Carrying on from the previous post, here are some 'honourable mentions' that didn't make the final cut, and a whole bunch of older stuff I've been revisiting this year:

Close, but no cigar:

Dexys - One Day I'm Going to Soar

The Walkmen - Heaven

Man Without Country - Foe

Wintersleep - Hello Hum

Twin Shadow - Confess

Orbital - Wonky

Field Music - Plumb

And the oldies; cigars aplenty:

Top 10 Albums 2012

So, it's getting on for the end of the year, and time to list my top 10 albums. I said that like I do this every year, didn't I? Well, I suppose I do - in my head/heart, but this is the first time I've put it on here; I feel a tradition coming on. Anyway, here are my choices, in one particular order:

10. Alabama Shakes – Boys and Girls
Echoes of vocal touchstones aplenty (Beth Ditto, Dusty Springfield, Janis Joplin), but actually there's nothing quite like this raw aggressive style; and there's definitely nothing quite like Brittany Howard's voice.

9. Grizzly Bear – Shields
Sophisticated guitar music, a lighter step on from their last, but actually a move towards something better. Wistful psychedelia kicking on from 60's fluff to Pink Floyd greatness.  

8. Beat Connection – Palace Garden
If blissed-out electro-pop is part of the mix that gives you your fix, then you'll have loved this. Sophisticated and uplifting; an absolute delight.

7. David Byrne & St. …

Book club

So, I joined a book club early last year. It's a relaxed affair that takes place once every 6 weeks or so in a cool little bar in Shimokitazawa. The beer flows along with the discussion. It does sometimes get very animated, but so far there hasn't been a drunken brawl. I do think, though that it's just a matter of time and a question of finding the right book.

I did initially intend to write a review of each of the books we read; an erudite record of the scholarly heights we scale, but as that doesn't really describe the nature of the meetings, I have since decided to summarize briefly either my own response or the consensus of the group.
These are the ones we've looked at so far; I'll bump it as we go along:

Ian McEwan – Solar: with the exception of one or two scenes, possibly the least funny comedy since Love Thy Neighbour, and yet strangely compelling as a narrative.

Kazuo Ishiguro – An Artist of the Floating World: absolutely fascinating study into the view the…

Woodland walk and dramatic sunset

So I was working away again this week; the last time before the end of the year. The weather was overcast when I arrived at the location, but I still went out looking for a snap or two. In the end, I was rewarded with a few interesting photos as the skies cleared somewhat as the sun went down. I also snapped the moon a couple of times, but it's difficult to do much with those until I manage to get a better camera.