Astonishing success explained

There is talent, and then there is what might be described as assisted talent. You don’t even have to ask if this guy took the ticket.

Ed Sheeran and wife Cherry Seaborn announce birth of daughter Lyra Antarctica – named after the main character in his favourite book, His Dark Materials.

That weird little guy doesn’t have skeletons in his close, he almost certainly has them on the grounds of his estate. Anyone dare to take the bet that he doesn’t eventually announce how he will not be leaving most of his vast fortune to this little girl?


Nationalism intensifies

And it has a soundtrack. Speaking of nationalism, I’m told that the Man in Black at the beginning is one of Mongolia’s Olympic champions. I don’t know about you, but that makes me want to saddle up and ride with the Golden Horde against the globalists trying to eliminate the nations. I wouldn’t have thought they could have topped The Great Chinggis Khan, but they did, and they did it without breaking a sweat.

The Men of the West should be as proud of their nations and heritages as the Mongols are of theirs. To Hell with civnattery.


A fraud and a pedophile?

Nobel Laureate Bob Zimmerman is chock-full of fascinating confessions in his newest release:

I’m just like Anne Frank, like Indiana Jones
And them British bad boys, the Rolling Stones
I go right to the edge, I go right to the end
I go right where all things lost are made good again.

Step aside Murakami. You may as well put the pen down, David Sylvian. It’s just as well that you’re long dead, Tolstoy. That’s some quality literature right there.

Speaking of music, I’d tell you what we’re working on, only you would not believe it. All right, those who know me would probably believe it, but they wouldn’t want to do so. Also, apologies in advance, mi muy buen amigo….



Plagiarizing the narrative

It’s not a mystery. Fiction authors don’t predict events, the crisis manufacturers simply rip off their narratives from them from time to time:

The Eyes of Darkness, a 1981 thriller by bestselling suspense author Dean Koontz, tells of a Chinese military lab that creates a virus as part of its biological weapons programme. The lab is located in Wuhan, which lends the virus its name, Wuhan-400. A chilling literary coincidence or a case of writer as unwitting prophet?

In The Eyes of Darkness, a grieving mother, Christina Evans, sets out to discover whether her son Danny died on a camping trip or if – as suspicious messages suggest – he is still alive. She eventually tracks him down to a military facility where he is being held after being accidentally contaminated with man-made microorganisms created at the research centre in Wuhan.

If that made the hair on the back of your neck stand up, read this passage from the book: “It was around that time that a Chinese scientist named Li Chen moved to the United States while carrying a floppy disk of data from China’s most important and dangerous new biological weapon of the past decade. They call it Wuhan-400 because it was developed in their RDNA laboratory just outside the city of Wuhan.”

In another strange coincidence, the Wuhan Institute of Virology, which houses China’s only level four biosafety laboratory, the highest-level classification of labs that study the deadliest viruses, is just 32km from the epicentre of the current coronavirus outbreak. The opening of the maximum-security lab was covered in a 2017 story in the journal Nature, which warned of safety risks in a culture where hierarchy trumps an open culture.

Sometimes they get away with it, sometimes they don’t. For example, the keyboardist/DJ in Psykosonik “borrowed” a techno riff for the post-chorus for one of our songs from dance groove he liked to spin by a little-known European techno group. Not a big deal, that’s something that techno and house groups do all the time and is generally considered homage, not plagiarism. We did find it a little embarrassing, however, when that initially-unknown song somehow blew up into a stadium anthem that is regularly heard to this day.

Ironically, both songs made the Billboard Top 40 club chart, at numbers 14 and 37, respectively.


The greatest press conference of all time

Everyone knows that Prince’s performance at Super Bowl XLI was the greatest halftime show ever. But most people don’t know that his pre-Super Bowl press conference was arguably even more legendary.

When we said, “You’ll have to have a press conference. They would like to interview you,” Prince point blank said, “I don’t do interviews.”


Country music is dead

I can’t say I ever paid any attention to it, but based on recent observations, it’s hard to argue with Loretta Lynn’s opinion:

Loretta Lynn voiced her displeasure with current country music during a recent podcast, and she didn’t hold back. The 87-year-old country music pioneer told Martina McBride that she thinks country music is “dead.”

“I think it’s a shame,” she said on the ‘Vocal Point with Martina McBride’ podcast, according to WhiskeyRiff.com. “I think it’s a shame to let a type of music die. I don’t care what any kind of music it is. Rock, country, whatever. I think it’s a shame to let it die.”

Inclusivity kills every form of entertainment. The case for the prosecution is conclusive.



Haunting

I don’t know if a band has ever gotten consistently better live over time than Babymetal. It’s astonishing to see how far they’ve come from the days of three girls dancing to a track of Doki Doki Morning. This is the last performance of Mikio, who died tragically in a freak accident one month after the Hiroshima concert. It’s a subtle tribute, but when Su sings “Nidoto ae-nai” which means “we shall never meet again”, you can see the camera switches momentarily to Mikio.

Apparently this song has only been performed live five times, never outside of Japan. Su’s voice keeps getting stronger over the years, and while one of the guitars are a bit sharp in the first solo, the additional layers provided by the live piano and strings make this my favorite version yet. Although Leda did the original arrangement, I think I like it best when Mikio and Ohmura play it together.

It’s always intriguing to see the way musically sensitive people react to this song. It’s not unusual for them to cry despite having no idea what the lyrics are or what the song is about. And understanding them really does not help at all….

We shall never meet again but I never want to forget you.
If the dream continues, I hope I never wake up from it.