Ponder this to get near­er to noth­ing

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Long time, no see. In the last week I star­ted a new design job, had some major dent­al work done, and also moved. Busy. I now have a bit more money, and a lot more space though, which is always a good thing. I’ve got a fair few things to catch up with here. I’ve got films I took at Homespun Fest­iv­al to devel­op and scan, and some illus­tra­tion and sewing things to finish.

This week­end I was supposed to go to the Jabber­wocky Fest­iv­al in London, which was cancelled two days before it was due to happen. I planned to see Neut­ral Milk Hotel, Cari­bou, Panda Bear, Elec­tric Wizard, Forest Swords, the Van Pelt, Thee Oh Sees, Sun Kil Moon and the Ex. My friend Chloe was coming down from Glas­gow to stay with me. She decided to come down anyway because the train tick­ets were non-refund­able, and to see what bands we could, prior­it­ising the bands that rarely play in the UK. Top of the list was the Van Pelt, because they split up in the 90s, and haven’t played more than a hand­ful of shows in that time. Some help­ful person set up a face­book group, and there was a mad scramble to book new shows for stran­ded bands, and then anoth­er mad scramble to book tick­ets for things, and then sell or pass on tick­ets when you real­ised you’d double booked your­self. Luck­ily I happened to be at a computer when all the tick­ets for replace­ment gigs were going on sale, because they went so quickly.

Initially we were going to see the Van Pelt at a free all-dayer a pub was putting on, but that would have been a night­mare with the amount of people and the small capa­city venue (and added to that the fact I’ve been suffer­ing with on and off pain­ful sinus/​throat/​ear/​teeth trouble from having so much done to my teeth this week), so we were glad when they announced a tick­eted show. I’ve been to a lot of ATP fest­ivals and gigs over the years, but I think this fiasco will be the end of them.

I borrowed Sultans of Senti­ment off someone when I was at uni about 10 years ago, and copied it onto the computer. A decade, and 3 computers later it disap­peared along the wayside some­where along with some other great albums. In fact I’d kind of forgot­ten how great they were until I saw the fest­iv­al lineup back in the winter and I was all “Oh yeah, that album was bril­liant, I’ve got to see them”. It was possibly better this way, as we got to see them do a head­line set, rather than a short after­noon set at the fest­iv­al. The gig was excel­lent, they basic­ally played every song they had, and we were down the front in a small venue. Prob­ably one of my gigs of the year. I tried to take some b&w pics, but the light­ing was mostly red, which is a disaster in low-light situ­ations, but I wasn’t that bothered, because I was there to listen. You should listen to this album. I saw a review once that described it as “poet­ic post-punk” which I think sums it up well. Liter­ary, but with depth of feel­ing. Partic­u­larly Nanzen Kills a Cat and Yamato (Where People Really Die)

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