The Gentle Art of Giving Too Much Away

typed for your pleasure on 20 March 2006, at 6.00 pm

Sdtrk: ‘Ich war ein Kind’ by France Gall

Sent off my questionnaire answers on Sunday to Anu, the writer of the soon-to-be-published latest article about RealDolls and their owners, for Finland’s Image magazine. It took me about a week to properly answer fourteen questions, cos I’m especially thorough with a subject such as this, so there’s less chance of me being misunderstood. He wrote back, ‘I was impressed by the effort you’d put into them for our mag across the globe. Unfortunately I was limited by space in using them, but I did leave some other stuff out of the final text to be able to fit more of your thoughts into it.’ Translation: egad, you’re blabby. Better more than less, as far as that goes..

Speaking of interviews, here’s a rather ace interview of sorts with Morrissey, conducted by Douglas Coupland. His solo material still has yet to affect me as much as his work with Johnny, Andy and Mike, to whom I regard their releases as gospel. But Morrissey — quite literally, the Man, the Myth, the Legend — will always be a person I greatly admire.

… He doesn’t like celebrity culture or pop culture – disdains it really – and yet he obsesses on obscure pop stars from other eras such as Sacha Distel (French; 1960s) and seems to perceive no similarity between worshipping what’s happening now versus what was once worshipped in other times.

Well shit, that sounds awfully familiar, wouldn’t you say?

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This was the Future, Vol.23

typed for your pleasure on 18 March 2006, at 11.47 am

Sdtrk: ‘Scheisse’ by the Seconds

We here at ‘Shouting etc etc’ — and when I say ‘we’, I mean, myself and Sidore-chan, and when I say ‘myself and Sidore-chan’, I mean ‘myself’, cos she won’t write for this bloody thing.
Where was I? O yeah. We here at ‘Shouting etc etc’ don’t really have any hard and fast rules for building selections for the critically-acclaimed ‘This was the Future’ series — basically, it should be from the mid-to-late Fiftes up to the mid-Seventies, or it should look like it’s from that time period, and it has to be interesting. Having said that, I’m not a big fan of saucer-shaped structures. With the exceptions of the Chemosphere and the Futuro House (review pending), I just don’t really like them, as I think they’re kinda forced and cliched. ‘IN TEH FUTURE, OUR HOMES WILL BE SHAPED IN THE STYLE OF THE SAUCERS THAT WE WILL USE TO TRAVEL TO THE STAAAAARRS!!1!’ I always thought using that particular shape for a building was a little dumb. Perhaps it’s the lack of corners that bothers me, I dunno. But recently I happened upon a structure I’d never heard of before: the Evoluon in Eindhoven, The Netherlands.

To celebrate the 75th birthday of the Philips company in Eindhoven in 1966, a special exhibit on science and technology was opened in the Evoluon, a futuristic building designed by L. Ch. Kalff. [..] The exhibition was designed by the British designer James Gardner. It was not a display of Philips products, but a museum with a message. Shown was how mechanisation and automating had increased production and made life more comfortable. You could see how modern society had its problems, from environmental pollution, depletion of natural resources to over population, but also how technology could offer solutions to these problems. Lots of science and its technical application could be seen.

Yes yes, it’s an enormous saucer. But the interior.. my christ, the interior. That was the best thing about it! If you got Broadcast and Ghost box round to your office and hired them as interior designers, you’d end up with something a lot like the Evoluon. It was a science museum constructed in the Sixties, so naturally you had to have a lot of concrete hexagons, and chrome spheres, and perspex boxes, and metal ‘sound sculptures’ and things of that nature — it’s a rule. See if I’m wrong.

The museum also featured its own amateur radio station, a robot called the ‘Senster’ which reacted to sounds, an oversized Nixie clock that was used to display the number of visitors every day, and if you couldn’t get a guide to assist you, you merely requested a ‘Gidofoon’, which was a cassette deck that played a tape which explained each exhibit. Brilliant.

The exhibition was closed in 1989 due to the declining amount of visitors; however, the Evoluon still stands today, as it has been repurposed as a business-oriented conference centre. Good to see that the building’s still around, but without the Philips exhibit, it’s definitely not the same..

Finally, you have to view the videos, also hosted on Kees’ Evoluon Site (that’s the good one, not the corporate one). Even the music’s perfect!
So I guess the saucer-shape isn’t too inappropriate, as it’s transported me back to the Evoluon’s heyday. Rather clever, indeed

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yes, more of that cute Actroid-chan

typed for your pleasure on 16 March 2006, at 2.21 am

Sdtrk: ‘Alison’ by Slowdive

Achtung! New video posted to Shi-chan’s Dailymotion page:

Actroid Repliee Q1-type 002

You’d think the fact that I’ve displayed it here kinda makes that link redundant, but I really wanted to start bumping the previous post from the topmost spot. I’d write up another instalment of ‘This was the Future’, but that’d take at least 90 min of research, and it’s already past my bedtime. Maybe later, if you’re good

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typed for your pleasure on 13 March 2006, at 6.06 pm

Sdtrk: ‘Only to other people’ by The Cookies

Remember that post I’d written concerning the brilliant ‘Caring for Your Introvert’ article by Jonathan Rauch? Well, there’s a follow-up interview with him here.

Do you ever wish you were an extrovert?

Not really. That may be because my “faking it” skills are pretty good. But I do think a lot of us are tired of being told that there’s something wrong with us—of this lazy assumption that if you’re not an extrovert, there’s something wrong with you. I think my article may speak to people in part because of its defiant message. It says, “No, I don’t wish to be an extrovert. Not everyone has to be one. And why don’t you people get it?”

Again, required reading

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typed for your pleasure on 11 March 2006, at 9.18 am

Sdtrk: ‘Everybody in the Discotheque (I hate) (We Love Motor Mark mix)’ by Stereo total

Funny you should axe that question! atsushi-san and his sexpot girlfriend MaRi-chan have kindly sent us these new pics for evaluation recently. These would be the new face for the Yu-ki model of A.I NEO Doll by 4woods.

4woods normally has a quite consistent batting average with their lasses, but wow, the new face is very, very impressive — the eye makeup is ace, and I am really digging her little pout. (And everything else, of course..)

Sure, Yu-ki may be more ganguro-esque than Shi-chan and I prefer our Synthetiks, but, as she can still be ordered with the ‘Natural’ skintone as well as ‘Asian color’, that’s quite alright. It’s not as if we’d say no to a ganguro Doll anyway, but I’d have to keep a close watch on my credit card..
Additional pics of the new face aren’t actually up yet on 4woods’ site, so I guess this post would be defined as a ‘scoop’, but an official announcement should be made soon, however. In the meantime, you could do what we’re doing, and stare longingly at the ones above! Ahh, so nice..

Also, I may have a line on some episodes of ‘My living Doll‘ on DVD. Not exactly a legitimate release, of course, but at this point, beggars can’t be choosers, as I’ve been frothing at the bit for years to see these. More details relatively sooooon

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On Stereolab / Once again, again with the interviews

typed for your pleasure on 9 March 2006, at 11.47 pm

Sdtrk: ‘Vodiak’ by Stereolab

So I was out and about today, and I had no idea that Stereolab had a new release out! That shit slipped beneath my radar, completely and utterly.

I love that title

Apparently, it’s not really a new full-length, it’s a compilation of recent singles. So far, I’ve only listened to half of it, and it almost pains me to say it, but… Stereolab just doesn’t stimulate me as much as they used to. In fact, their previous release, Margerine eclipse, remains rather unmemorable to me as well, as it just didn’t have a lot of stand-out tracks. I completely dug the EP that came right before it, Instant 0 in the universe, but ever since the Dots and loops era, where they’d begin a song, get halfway through it, and then completely switch melodies, they’ve been inching down a preference slope for me. Not to say that that’s what I don’t like — New order used to do that all the time, which was one of the qualities that drew me to them — but I’d say it’s something else…

Personally, I think the reason for the dew being off the lily these days is due to their lack of Farfisa-centred Motorik-based songs. Compare Mars audiac quintet to Cobra and phases group… and it’s almost like two different bands. Yes, I realise that if you’re running a band for fifteen (!!) years, your sound is obviously going to change, but for a person like me who swears by consistency, it’s a wee bit unsettling. For instance, the only albums by The Jesus and Mary chain that I own are Psycho candy, Barbed wire kisses, and Honey’s dead, and that’s cos they all pretty much sound alike. Hell, I was disconcerted when Broadcast started relying less on samples on everything post-Work and non work.
This is why whenever a band I like breaks up or otherwise quits, there’s the initial heartbreak, but eventually I’m okay with their decision, cos oftentimes it crystallises them forever at their peak (i.e, Joy division, the Smiths), as opposed to flogging their particular horse into mucilage (i.e post-Technique New order, post-NATO Laibach).

They’re in town this Sunday, and I have to say that I’m altogether not too gung-ho on seeing them. Plus it’s on a Sunday eve. I hate it when bands do that. I have to work the next morning, you know. Goddamned rock stars.
I’ll still buy Stereolab’s releases, but it’s just not the same anymore, as I’ll keep hoping for them to do a 180, and make another Transient random noise-bursts. Even if it’s only temporary, I’ll be a happy lad..

Looks like another passel of interviews about being an iDollator is nigh! Are nigh! Whatever. That troublemakin’ lass Elena Dorfman wrote me from out of the blue today, saying that someone from Details magazine would have words with me concerning the Missus, which was really a surprise, as I haven’t seen an issue of Details on the racks since the mid-Nineties. Also, there’s some bloke from a Finnish youth and culture magazine called Image hoping for an article as well. The Finnish mag I have no problem with, but I’ll have to be cautious with the Details fellow, as that’s, y’know, published in the States. Obviously, I don’t want a repeat of the Pandagon colostomy bag explosion, or worse. I’ll keep you posted…
Gods, can’t these people wait until Sidore-chan’s site is back up (still pending)?

As an aside, I simply must share with you a line from Elena’s Email that struck me: ‘It’s a marvelous day here in the Bay Area; lots of sunshine and big, fluffy clouds. Makes a girl feel like jumping from the Golden Gate Bridge. Know what I mean?’
Ha! Feckin’ brilliant

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I’d better hurry up and write something now, before I lose my three and a half readers!!1!

typed for your pleasure on 6 March 2006, at 8.14 pm

Sdtrk: ‘Bach ze’ by The High Llamas

Actually, I do have a number of ‘regular’ readers, it’s just that hardly anyone ever says anything.

I’ve no idea what you lot are thinking. As you’re well aware, I merely work here

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