Published May 22nd 2014, European Parliamentary Election Day.

Saturday’s sunshine has seen a mower Holocaust wrought on many a lawn. These outdoor carpet-barbers spent the good weather making their immediate outdoors looking good for the inevitable deluge next weekend, and I suppose the bees still made honey in 1945. On the top deck of this bus there’s a several-headed Cerberean man-boy in Jacamo clothing, his alcohol deafened heads vocally overcompensate, amplifying their laughter to an inner-ear blasting level for the rest of us, making this comparatively brisk trip through the Curry Mile feel like a marathon.


One of the heads pokes out of the window slit and shouts at what he believes to be Iranian and Iraqi flags.


“…and you can stick your oil up your arse, an’ all!”

“Indians are okay, it’s their neighbours that are the knobheads, innit, eh?”

(Reticence from the rest of his heads.)

‘Look at it, I just hate that they’ve made it their gaff.’ it says, before making plans to come back. Yes, the racists are returning to Rusholme later on for “a Ruby Murray”.


(Chief UKIPPER: Nigel Farage)

Nigel Farage’s bulbous eyes watch all this on his underwater crystal ball as he re-hydrates in an attempt to counter this midsummer in May, and in readiness for his upcoming assault on Europe. His fish lipped, upside-down clown mouth tautens into that delighted/gag-reflex combination of a laugh he has.


(A young Russell is schooled by a man doing anything it takes to inherit a fortune)

Meanwhile, Revolutionary-Jester Russell Brand feels a tingling sensation in his winkle, something markedly different from the chlamydial tickle to which he’s become accustomed. No, this urethral twinge seems to herald something of colossal import as the political philosophy he was schooled in by Richard Pryor in ‘Brewster’sMillions’, later spouted-out of his well-practised mouth looks to be yielding unexpected results as credulous good men prepare to do nothing.

“It Can’t Happen Here.”

“…But then they buried her alive on evening, 1945…”

I’m thinking about Godwin’s Law in the Albert Hall. You know, that old “internet adage that is derived from one of the earliest bits of Usenet wisdoms, which goes “if you mention Adolf Hitler or Nazis you’ve automatically ended whatever discussion you were taking part in.” I’m thinking about how, ironically, God-win will see Devil-Prevail, and possibly be responsible for the next rise of fascism, or at least result in everyone being too cool to object or protest. The atmosphere inside isn’t quite as I had anticipated; rather than the clamour that surrounded the announcement of the tour there’s a sense of expectance and entitlement rather than jittery disbelief of what is about to transpire, which admittedly flakes away somewhat for unbridled adulation as the band take the stage.

Jeff Mangum looks like he just this morning crawled out of the self-imposed-exile-from-the-public-eye that characterised him in the early 2000s, his lengthy grey facial hair far out-stripping the many checked-shirted competitors in attendance. Mangum slowly walks across the stage strumming the introduction to ‘King of Carrot Flowers Part 1’, and the band file-in behind.

‘…Part 2’ comes banjo-crawling over an impression of a cornfield, the audience break into a communal declaration of love for the undiluted idea of Christ, and two-dimensional hand-painted cardboard cut-out plants and flowers rise behind the band and out the pipes of the now ornamental wall-organ that makes up the back of the stage their inseminating stamens also sprouting out of the bells of the muted trumpet and French Horn, snaking their way up toward the sunlight dying behind the stained glass, and the Singing Saw’s ascending, whistling pitch of the impending ‘…Part 3’ propels us “Up and Over…” into the stratosphere. When it ends, burning up on re-entry they launch straight into the galloping ‘Holland 1945’.

Mangum presses his hands together as though to pray, bouncing them off his heart and out towards the audience with a humble shake of his grateful head, and gets respite from the ‘Aeroplane…’ by landing ‘On Avery Island’ for ’A Baby For Pree’ and ‘Gardenhead’, hushing the majority of us up for a few minutes. Julian Koster acts as the band’s mouthpiece, and speaks, dresses and behaves like a 15 year old, beautifully so, and after Mangum has sung himself into a potential heart attack during ‘Two Headed Boy’ and excused himself from the stage to exorcise the tightness in his chest, Koster regales us with half a joke about a man who has half an orange for a head. When Mangum abruptly returns Koster promises us “the other half later on”, which we never get, making this unforthcoming “other half” of a Two Headed joke a sort of a punchline in itself.

Our alternative Albert Hall repetitively combusts with imaginary confetti like the Last Night of the Indie Rock Proms, climaxing with the ineffable majestygasm of ‘(Untitled)’ and shudders and sighs through the laconic crescendo of ‘Two Headed Boy Part 2’ and ‘Engine’. Unlike their contemporaries’ re-treads of former glories, Neutral Milk Hotel in 2014 are still as incandescent a conduit for beauty as they were when they called it a day. They visibly and audibly enthuse at this music that has transcends adulation, criticism and even its creators, almost as much as we do.

I walk toward home through the Tuxedoed Lizards smoking E-Cigs outside the Midland and wonder if I’ll be unlucky enough to get on the bus ferrying the Curry Mile Hydra, my synapses still crackling with a Louisianan crackpot’s Anne Frank wank fantasy.

Please take a vote away from a racist today.


The King of Carrot Flowers, Part One

The King of Carrot Flowers, Parts Two & Three

Holland, 1945

A Baby for Pree


Everything Is

Two-Headed Boy

The Fool

In the Aeroplane Over the Sea


Ferris Wheel on Fire

Oh Comely

Song Against Sex

Ruby Bulbs

Snow Song, Part One




Two-Headed Boy, Part Two


Big Bucks: The ‘Press Your Luck’ Scandal

In 1984, an Ice Cream Truck driver from Lebabanon, Ohio tore himself away from 12 television sets tuned to different channels, and applied the code he’d cracked for his favourite Game Show as one of it’s contestants, walking away with a then unprecedented haul of $110,000.

‘Children of God: Lost and Found’

“In the late 1960s, minister David Berg evangelized hippies and surfers in Huntington Beach, California. The middle-aged preacher, born in 1919, found young people receptive to his unusual message blending fundamentalist Christianity with liberal sexual ethics. As Berg’s followers grew, Berg dubbed them the “Children of God” in 1968. The name was changed to “Family of Love” in 1978 and later to its present “Family International,” often called “The Family” or TF…

…In 1974, Berg introduced a controversial conversion method called “Flirty Fishing” or “FFing.” Writer Stephen A. Kent observed that Berg advocated, “COG members practice recruitment and resource acquisition through sexual activities.” Berg urged females to become “hookers for Jesus.”…

…Some of Berg’s most alarming teachings appeared to condone pedophilia and incest. Mo Letters from the 1970s discuss a babysitter who masturbated and fellated Berg when he was only three years old. Berg asserted her actions did not do him “any harm.”…

Karen Zerby gave birth to a “Jesus Baby” in 1975. The product of FFing and stepson of David Berg was named David Moses Zerby. Later, his name was legally changed to Richard Peter Smith and still later to Richard Rodriguez. As a child, he was nicknamed “Davidito.”

Berg and Zerby believed Rick was a “divine prince,” destined to take over the ministry. Raised without hypocritical “System” sexual inhibitions, he would grow into a mighty religious leader.

In 1982, the Family International published a book entitled The Story of Davidito. It purports to be the story of his early childhood as told by one of his nannies. That nanny, Sara, writes that she hopes the rearing of Davidito will begin a “Childcare Revolution” and exclaims, “Thank You Jesus! A new example was set before us.” She writes that she and other nannies fellated Davidito to “clean” his penis. He was also allowed to watch adults having sex. Sara writes that readers learning about “Davidito’s sexy experiences” should “prayerfully” learn from them and “follow the Lord’s leadings.” The book is heavily illustrated with photographs, some of which show the boy and an adult woman cuddling, both naked

The Family came under renewed scrutiny in 2005 when Berg’s stepson Ricky Rodriguez murdered a member and then killed himself.”

Bob Log III, The Ruby Lounge, 24/4/2014

“N. Senada’s (Bavarian Composer -1907-1993) “Theory of Obscurity” states that an artist can only produce pure art when the expectations and influences of the outside world are not taken into consideration.”

I shouldn’t have to be writing this because you should have been there yourself. Luckily for you, Bob is a natural phenomenon that, like some integral celestial body circles the Planet Earth every year, so you can ensure you don’t miss him next time. Though maybe it’s us that orbits him. Anyway until next year…

Bob Log III isn’t that lanky guy that soundchecked. Bob was shot from an Arizona flag emblazoned cannon out of a Jack White nightmare or Evel Knievel wet dream into being. Bob knows he’s the finest thing in all Creation and has deigned to share his preordained greatness with you; so clap your tits, sit on his knee, put shit on his leg and your boob in his scotch – walking through the audience, balloons tethered to headstock and bridge, Bob plays his way to the stage…


“He’s looking right at me!” Balloons, purty ladies, hard liquor. He’s a professional. He lives in a car.

Despite an appeal via Twitter, no one brought along a rubber dinghy tonight for Bob to surf the tide of bodies, so instead he’s offering to hand out balloons to those who sufficiently lose their shit during each number. It’s shit-kicking, boot stomping Rock N’ Roll via an amphetamine addled spectre of the Delta Blues. While there’s undeniably a tongue lodged firmly into a chewing tobacco-browned cheek beneath that visor, he’s in no way defamatory about the tradition he’s entered into and expanded upon. The Dadaesque shroud of anonymity might be a concession to initially wrong-foot and ultimately win over any cynics who think they’ve heard this all before, but it’s better not to over-think things in such terms – there’s a gathering as diverse in age and cultural affiliation as I’ve seen at any gig in recent memory, all involuntarily entering into a rhythmic conniption fit for a guy with a telephone receiver jammed through the visor of a glittery crash helmet playing a style of music over a Century old.

Head jerking upward, side to side on the offbeat while his fingers molest the fretboard of his Silvertone archtop or electric Banjo at warp speed, Bob cuts an awesome if uncanny figure. There’s something about the inhuman helmet in juxtaposition with the skin of the plunging neckline created by the open zipped jumpsuit. He’s like an action figure or cartoon character – nothing should be inferred as being moulded or pencilled-in beneath that mask other than a fully formed, Universally understandable persona; this redneck overstuffed with a bravado that he unwaveringly, conceitedly believes you’re in complete agreement with. This assumption makes him hilarious, but also honest, as his proficiency with his instrument turns out to be undeniably awe inspiring.

Bob takes us on a travelogue of his back catalogue, interspersed with the standards (‘Boob Scotch’, Clap Your Tits’, ‘LogBomb’) and self aggrandising between-song banter that never fails to land a gut-punch guffaw, before languidly swaggering off through the crowd the way he entered, playing complex riffs with ease before disappearing through a backroom door. The music continues unabated, before Bob reappears stage left from having presumably passed throgh a backstage corridor without breaking his stride to complete this Kaufmanesque encore or ‘nonecore’, if you will.

Bob Log III must stoke doubt and embarrassment in innumerable affectation laden, self important, pouting musicians with the conceptual realisation, technical prodigiousness and unfettered joy of his act. At least he would, had he not simply been shot from an Arizona flag emblazoned cannon out of a Jack White nightmare or Evel Knievel wet dream into being. You aren’t even on his radar, chump.

Next time I’m taking everyone I know, and cajoling those I don’t, starting with you.


The Sunday Song Poem #9 ‘Feeling Beside Myself’ Buddy Raye

Despite the papal canonisation today (broadcast in 3D to select cinemas and News channels, anyone catch that, did they have that swinging, incense lantern flying out atcha?), I feel like I should eschew the subject since I kind of already did the Holy Song Poem last Sunday. Not only that, but try as I might I couldn’t find a Song Poem for a Pope, which I find hard to believe having encountered a fair few about Richard Nixon, Elvis, Christopher Columbus, and Sexploitation actors turned male midwives. So instead I decided to just go straight for the crazy, literally in today’s case. – See more at:

The (Easter) Sunday Song Poem #8 ‘The Man Called Jesus’ By Unknown Artist

if you condensed every Metalhead’s efforts at creating the most unnerving dirge the Universe has ever heard, they probably couldn’t outdo the efforts of the unknown musicians who conjured-up today’s Song Poem. While we know its lyrics were penned by a Sgt Kenneth E. Green, this composition, discombobulating warped-vinyl or not, likely out-ugly’s anything he ever witnessed on the battlefield. Behold… – See more at:

Transcript of Michael Stipe’s Nirvana Induction Speech at Rock and Roll Hall of Fame

Good evening. I’m Michael Stipe and I’m here to induct Nirvana into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

When an artist offers an idea, a perspective, it helps us all to see who we are. And it wakes up, and it pushes us forward towards our collective and individual potential. It makes us—each of us—able to see who we are more clearly. It’s progression and progressive movement. It’s the future staring us down in the present and saying, “C’mon, let’s get on with it. Here we are. Now.”

I embrace the use of the word “artist” rather than “musician” because the band Nirvana were artists in every sense of the word. It is the highest calling for an artist, as well as the greatest possible privilege to capture a moment, to find the zeitgeist, to expose our struggles, our aspirations, our desires. To embrace and define a period of time. That is my definition of an artist.

Nirvana captured lightning in a bottle. And now, per the dictionary—off the Internet—in defining “lightning in a bottle” as, “Capturing something powerful and elusive, and then being able to hold it and show it to the world.”

Kurt Cobain, Krist Novoselic and Dave Grohl were Nirvana. The legacy and the power of their defining moment has become, for us, indelible. Like my band, R.E.M., Nirvana came from a most unlikely place. Not a cultural city-center like London, San Francisco, Los Angeles, or even New York—or Brooklyn—but from Aberdeen, Washington in the Pacific Northwest, a largely blue-collar town just outside of Seattle.

Krist Novoselic said Nirvana came out of the American hardcore scene of the 1980’s—this was a true underground. It was punk rock, where the many bands or musical styles were eclectic. We were a product of a community of youth looking for a connection away from the mainstream. The community built structures outside of the corporate, governmental sphere, independent, and decentralized. Media connected through the copy machine, a decade before the Internet, as we know it, came to be. This was social networking with a face.

Dave Grohl said, “We were drop-outs, making minimum wage, listening to vinyl, emulating our heroes—Ian MacKaye, Little Richard—getting high, sleeping in vans, never expecting the world to notice.”

Solo artists almost have it easier than bands—bands are not easy. You find yourself in a group of people who rub each other the wrong way, and exactly the right way. And you have chemistry, zeitgeist, lightning in a bottle and a collective voice to help pinpoint a moment, to help understand what it is that we’re going through. You see this is about community and pushing ourselves. Nirvana tapped into a voice that was yearning to be heard.

Keep in mind the times: this was the late 80’s, early 90’s. America, the idea of a hopeful, democratic country, had been practically dismantled by Iran-Contra, by AIDS, by the Reagan/Bush Sr. administrations.

But with their music, their attitude, their voice, by acknowledging the political machinations of petty, but broad-reaching, political arguments, movements and positions that had held us culturally back, Nirvana blasted through all that with crystalline, nuclear rage and fury. Nirvana were kicking against the system, bringing complete disdain for the music industry, and their definition of corporate, mainstream America, to show a sweet and beautiful—but fed-up—fury, coupled with howling vulnerability.

Lyrically exposing our frailty, our frustrations, our shortcomings. Singing of retreat and acceptance over triumphs of an outsider community with such immense possibility, stymied or ignored, but not held down or held back by the stupidity and political pettiness of the times. They spoke truth, and a lot of people listened.

They picked up the mantle in that particular battle, but they were singular, and loud, and melodic, and deeply original. And that voice. That voice. Kurt, we miss you. I miss you.

Nirvana defined a moment, a movement for outsiders: for the fags, for the fat girls, for the broken toys, the shy nerds, the Goth kids from Tennessee and Kentucky, for the rockers and the awkward, for the fed-up, the too-smart kids and the bullied. We were a community, a generation—in Nirvana’s case, several generations—in the echo chamber of that collective howl, and Allen Ginsberg would have been very proud, here.

That moment and that voice reverberated into music and film, politics, a worldview, poetry, fashion, art, spiritualism, the beginning of the Internet, and so many fields in so many ways in our lives. This is not just pop music—this is something much greater than that.

These are a few artists who rub each other the wrong way, and exactly the right way, at the right time: Nirvana. 

‘The Sunday Song Poem’ #7 ‘Midwifery’

According to the ‘Malleus Maleficarum’, a 1484 tome on Witchcraft, the ‘Midwife’ was the most dangerous sub-category of harridan, insinuating itself into the confidence of a burgeoning family and wreaking unspeakable havoc on the fruit of their loins before, during and immediately after delivery.  Sure as a mucus plug something had to give, and that’s when man stepped in. After much experimentation into their hounding, torture, buoyancy and flammability yielded the groundbreaking discovery that witches didn’t exist, it was deducted that the pestilence of their machinations could be attributed instead to the devilishness and ineptitude inherent in women in general…

See more at: