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Archive for July, 2008


I’m delighted and excited to have been asked to make a contribution to the filming of Do you love me like I love you? – a series of films produced by acclaimed British artists Iain Forsyth & Jane Pollard to coincide with the remastering of the Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds’ back catalogue.

The two British artists have been commissioned to produce a series of short films that will accompany each of the studio albums when they are remastered and re-issued by Mute.

Each film will be a simple, powerful collage of people talking directly to camera about the songs on that album. The artists want to capture passionate, open people talking candidly about the songs they love from the band’s history; discussing the first time they heard a song, what it means to them, how it makes them feel, the stories the songs tell and the ways in which the band has soundtracked their lives.

The films will feature famous, infamous and unknown fans.

Iain and Jane developed the idea and will be conducting the interviews, directing and editing each film. They’ve spent the last six months working with the Bad Seeds on various video projects including the four promo videos for the new album “Dig, Lazarus Dig!!!’, live studio footage and a set of seven, one-minute ‘seance’ clips on YouTube. They’re artists who have worked have worked together for 14 years making videos and performances that cross-reference art and music.

Follow-up post made here.

David Tennant’s Doctor and the technobabble gabble

I just read an old post in which I said David Tennant’s Doctor “didn’t cut the mustard” for me. Well, I’d have to say I’ve changed my opinion. I do rather like his Doctor now. He does humorous character stuff particularly well, although he can really gabble the technobabble sometimes, leaving us all a bit fuzzy-headed.

Paris reflection

Scrap. Undated.

Paris airport: I let my head loll back, and was surprised to see myself reflected in the glossy copper ceiling. It was very close to me, and my image was large and clear. I felt uncomfortable with my reflection.

Our weekend with a Jensen Interceptor

For my 40th birthday last December my wife bought me a voucher for a weekend’s use of a Jensen Interceptor from Great Escape. We redeemed the voucher this weekend, and spent 48 hours with a beautiful 1973 Interceptor Mk3.

Our Interceptor

Our Interceptor

Back in the day, the Interceptor was bought by the rich and famous, and generally considered a step above contemporary vehicles from manufacturers such as Aston Martin. Even Eric Morcambe had one. I’ve always loved this rare car, and have seen only a few in my life. I love the body shape, the understated styling. It’s like a combination of the best of British and Italian, with an immense 7.2-litre Chrysler V8 to haul it along.

In this eco-conscious world, and an environment of soaring fuel prices, the engine in this car is simultaneously fantastic and ludicrous. It’s often said that V8 engines “burble” – a sound that appeals to most red-blooded males and a few red-blooded females. The Chrysler in the Interceptor doesn’t burble; it doesn’t even gurgle – when pulling away at a junction it delivers a positively open-throated gargle that turns heads and frightens dogs at sixty yards. It’s supposed to do 12-14 miles to the gallon, but I guess that means around ten. I spent £70 on fuel over the weekend, which was actually less than I was expecting.

Occasionally, at low speeds the vehicle can sound almost agricultural, chugging along like a tractor as the eight pistons thump around in the lump at the front, as if barely awake. The Interceptor seems happiest at 30-40 miles an hour. With a 3-speed automatic gearbox, above around 50mph the car feels as though it needs another gear to drop into, which seems odd given the size of the engine. It’s great to tootle along at 20-25 then give it a slight burst: “garrrrggggllllle”. Overall, the Interceptor’s a very positive drive and easy to steer – it just goes where you point it, with no surprises.

The interior features wonderful vintage switchgear and instrumentation by Jaeger. Each switch has a single function: horn, wipers, de-mist, and so on. There’s just one delicate stalk off the steering column, and it’s for the indicators alone – no multiple, multi-function columns here.

The seats were soft and luxurious, and even though those in the rear look small, they were (I’m told by my kids and an adult friend who sat in the back) very comfortable.

We picked the car up on Friday, which was quite nerve-wracking to begin with as I was scared of damaging the car somehow, or being the victim of someone else’s carelessness. By Sunday, however, I was very comfortable with the car and thoroughly enjoying it.

We went to Ragley Hall, and saw the room in which the ball scenes from Dr Who’s The Girl in the Fireplace were shot. We got caught in the rain only once, and had a fantastic weekend, enjoying admiring stares, frightening dogs and turning heads.

Great Escape has several classic cars available for hire, so if you fancy a weekend as enjoyable as the one we had, forget about the price of petrol, give Graham a call, and hire the kind of car you’re never likely to own for 48 hours.

Tweet me.

Old but gold – perusians from the scraps file

dream – 20/3/06: moving tamworth castle, which was situated in Little Church Lane and looked like a puritan church – had to get inside before those who wanted to leave it where it was, and move it by hand down Gungate.

[note: dreams scraps scribbled down in the bleary-eyed first light of dawn - no apologies for errors/typos/poor punctuation, etc, etc, maintained here for purposes of authenticity]


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