Detective Comics #1
When superhero comics artists decide to become superhero comics writers it can go one of three ways. One is that they’re good at it. The second is that they decide to be “writerly” and you get flowery stuff like the old Todd McFarlane Spider-Man comics. The third is that they write impatiently, wanting the words to get out of fun’s way. I have never minded this. If a...
Believe Everything →
New Poptimist column, about invented personas, made-up backstories, secret origins and the use of fiction suits in popular music. Only really dancing over the surface of a fascinating area!
A mummy in a suit →
BAH I hadn’t noticed until this that “singers with a command of particular techniques” in my copy had been replaced in the edit with “singers with technique”. Obviously I agree! (There is an irony in my point about nuance being distorted by the removal of my own attempt to be nuanced.) dubdobdee: curiously restrictive use maybe of the term “technique”? Sinatra has...
A mummy in a suit →
New Guardian column about the way we (meaning the Brits - I don’t know about how things stand in America) relate to pre-rock pop music, and reality TV’s radical rewriting of pop history. I think this is one of my better pieces for them! There’s a new Poptimist out tomorrow too - I am going to have a very busy day, I suspect (my last at my current job) so may not be able to give...
But because I can’t help make dodgy analogies - is “story” in games in a similar position to “lyrics” in the rock era? Lyrics were the part of rock most easily separable, transferable and comparable to other media (“The Poetry Of Rock”) and there was a lot of mixed feelings around this stuff because i. doing that was really obviously point-missing but ii....
timocraticyouth: tomewing replied to your post: There’s a weird bit of semantic drift going around… the distaste seems to boil down - both in marketing and gaming - to “over-visible progress mechanics”. Rockism 101 innit - draw attention to the artifice not the “art” and people get cross! Ah, but: the subset of hardcore-gamer that Bissell is aiming at are the ones who LOVE over-visible...
I have in front of me a box of CLAIROL NICE N EASY hair dye. The dye is for the colour black and the box promises “100% Grey Coverage”. This is a hair dye for ladies but apparently they “didn’t have” Just For Men. THAT’S OK, it’s the 21st century and I can apply a hair dye with a lady on the box without feeling THREATENED. This is all to do with changing...
Blackbeard Blog: A Bit Of News →
blackbeardblog: Two bits, really, and they’re related. I’ll be leaving Kantar Operations next week, after almost three very stimulating years. I’m starting an amazing new job next month, and there will be news about what exactly that is very soon - at which point I’ll do a proper thankyou/goodbye/hype post. But… A week or so ago I posted that I was happy - this is why!
Hearing the unremixed version of something you only knew from a remix, and finding that it’s, like, a proper song with words and verses and a chorus and all that kind of stuff? Very odd.
Social Anxiety Test →
isabelthespy: thediscography: sexshooter: definatalie: hickiesandhotpants: secretsong: kendalls-bottom-bitch: neffyy: highwayxunicorn: ramenfashion: reitaa: teizoku: mashachu: 16 10 i told a police officer at a gay parade that he had a nice costume 32 Aw yeah. 43 53. Omg. 21 35 oh 46. well. That wasn’t that much of a surprise. 44. WOOOO. Your score...
As I was writing “Love Like a River”, I could hear Beyoncé singing it, and it...– Interviews: Girls | Features | Pitchfork (via pitchfork) Everything I hear about Girls makes me hate them more and more. (via jonathanbogart) I am pretty sure I have never encountered a band which inspires as much fury in my long-time online compadres as GIRLS!
The Curse Of TINA →
Adam Curtis digs into the origins of the Think Tank in Britain - with digressions on pirate radio, pop manufacture, Hayek, murder, and privateers vs gentlemen.
openapplev: “There are disgusting and reprehensible things aplenty about ‘H8r,’ but none is worse than the producers insinuating that the underlying message of their show has any connection to the epidemic of cyberbullying, violence and suicides. It’s not surprising that the producers, so clueless on even rudimentary power dynamics, would be confused in this way. But if you can’t understand how...
Video Games Killed The Video Game Star →
If the goal is to ensure equal difficulty throughout a game experience, so that player strength and enemy strength are always rivalrous, why not, you know, just sort of design the game to do that invisibly? But why level up, anyway, if the game is going to stay equally difficult throughout? You leveled up and rolled the dice in Dungeons & Dragons because it was impossible to run such...
Life Neutral Solutions →
The industry page is particularly good.
Within a game theory-like approach, we explore diﬀerent promotion strategies and...– http://arxiv.org/PS_cache/arxiv/pdf/0907/0907.0455v3.pdf My main problem with the Peter Principle is the idea that organisations promote purely according to competence in the first place. Luckily it seems it wouldn’t work anyway.
Copyright Extension Is Anti-Music →
What this also means is that the overwhelming majority of music from over 50 years ago that is NOT commercially exploited by the major record labels also remains out of the public domain. And because it is still owned by the labels, it is retained in their vaults. On magnetic tape. Decaying – never to be heard again. Deleted by legislation. To add to this: my understanding is that copyright...
History's Greatest Charmer →
At this point Alcibiades was in deep trouble. In Athens, the oligarchs he had been cultivating looked at his record and decided they were better off without him. He had fouled his nest in Sparta by sleeping with King Agis’s wife Timaea, and boasting that it would be his blood-line that perpetuated Spartan royalty: as a result he had to leave town in a hurry, and Timaea’s son Leotychidas...
Pop Vs Oversharing →
And me on The-Dream’s 1977 and oversharing in pop.
A Time For Best New Reissue (Who's Afraid) →
The first Art Of Noise album has been reissued! I reviewed it for Pitchfork.
Oversharing In Pop
Writing something about the Terius Nash album - not sure “oversharing” is the right word exactly for that record’s “yeah ok The-Dream you should probably get some sleep at this point rather than start another song” feel but I wanted examples of records that are similar (in mood not necessarily genre) - similarly up-close, if you see what I mean. Any ideas?
Justice League #1
I have been reading the reviews of Justice League #1 on the comics sites. My favourite phrase so far is “hyperbole generating hype machine”. I’m also amused that the sausage generating sausage machine of wide-eyed geekbait has SUCH a hard-on for baseball metaphors. Not a review passes without some “major league” “heavy hitters” “bringing their A...
anythingcouldhappen: thediscography: “Irony and crippling self-consciousness are the culprits. The post-modern irony at the heart of Generation X has made it taboo to be passionate about anything, lest one appear “uncool” or cop to liking something that’s sell-by date has unwittingly passed by. This engenders the kind of eyes-averted, foot-shuffling, non-commital mumbling that has come to be...