I went to see The Fall and now my bum hurts.

Not because they kicked serious arse, though (although they did), but because gingiber amd anonymous_seth dragged me off into the Pentlands on their spare bike. Actually, though, it doesn't hurt nearly as much as I thought it would. More on this topic later.

There's speculation that the Duddingston angel envelopes might be a marketing ploy. Bloody expensive one if so.

Anyway. As you may remember, on Friday I was in work with a stiff neck (literally rather than metaphorically this time) doing the usual nonsense. Later I went round to S&L's place to get a lift to Glasgow to see Queen Adreena again. They were good, but not as good as i've seen them. The support band, Ariel-X, were rather fun in a slightly punky way. Sandy was in drummer heaven when he realised they'd just kicked off a song in 13/8 time (although they pusillanimously fell back to the revoltingly commercial 7/8 time for the chorus).

Saturday involved a quick trip round the shops to buy a coffee table book and look at compasses. On the way home across North Bridge I passed a squirrel going the other way, looking quite nervous. I assumed at the time that it was lost, but perhaps it was heading for Calton Hill or the graveyard across the road from it. In spite of zoo_music_girl's helpful suggestions I still can't think of where it might have been coming from. Later I met mxhaunted, buca et al for a pint or two and then hit Vain. My neck was a little better - I could turn it a little further to the left than on Friday, but only the same amount to the right - but I was sure that hopping about to Kerosene was going to have been a mistake.

On Sunday I messed about and tidied up, got a phone call from my sister and played some records to people at Neon, which was busy and rather fun. And realised that my neck was totally back to normal. I have a newfound respect for and appreciation of working necks.

Early on Monday afternoon, as soon as I'd had breakfast and read the paper, I went over to S&L's to be tortured by bicycle. As they'd fixed up their spare bike, we went out along the Union Canal and then the Water of Leith to Balerno, then uphill past Marchbank to Thriepmuir reservoir (it started raining slightly - it had been threatening to for a while, although it started out sunny), Harlaw reservoir (passing a woman coming off her bike on the aptly-named slipway - apparently unhurt, though - and then stopping in some trees for sandwiches) and then downhill through the gradually worsening rain past Wester, Middle and Easter Kinleith, steeply downhill before, between and after Clubbiedean and Torduff reservoirs, back across the bypass by Torphin and then back to the Water of Leith at Colinton before going straight home along the waterside. A lot of fun, actually, in spite of the weather, and not nearly as painful on the arse as I'd expected. I'm not sure about all the ridiculous hardware (disk brakes on pushbikes?), but effort into improved technology of bike seats is definitely justified. I'm also quite proud of not having ridden into the canal, which on the very narrow towpath on the canal aqueduct wasn't at all guaranteed. I think Lara said it was about twenty miles, with a rise of about 200 meters to Clubbiedean (which is about 10m above the top of Arthur's Seat).

Later, as I could still walk (John Wayne comments will not be appreciated) I got dragged out, kicking and screaming as usual, by grahamb to see The Fall. I haven't seen them in several years and I didn't know any of the songs. Mark Smith was a curmudgeonly old git who at least once turned his back on the audience to sing from lyrics on a bit of paper from his pocket and at no point made any apparent effort to win the audience over. When he and most of the band left the stage, the drummer kept playing until the guitarist came back on and joined in. Then the bassist did so, and the drummer decided to overturn his kit and go (probably laughing uproariously), at which point the other two did also, some lights came up, the records came on again and everyone prepared to leave. At which point Smith enters stage right and the crew start putting the drumkit together again. Utter chaos.

They were, of course, fantastic the whole time. Particularly a song that may or may not be called What About Us? which had a really good synth line. But they were all good. It's hard to say why it all worked so well, but it's enough that it did.

Smith has to turn the bassist up once they get going again because he's had his volume turned down (probably also by Smith) at some point - several times during the set he fiddled with the settings on people's amps without saying a word to whoever's using them. He must be impossible to work with.

Brilliant. I must go and see them again soon.

Today I shopped for Torx bits, read the paper and relaxed. At some point in the last few days I heard a lightbulb joke I hadn't heard before. It was probably on LJ, though, so you all probably know it.
  • Current Music: Pig - Head Like a Hole
He's getting right miserable in his old age
He were always a grumpy sod, but he used to at least leave everyone else alone. Mind you, almost all the times I saw them it was the most stable, and best, line-up, built around Craig Scanlon, Steve Hanley and Simon Wolstencroft. This produced the finest albums in the band's history, from Bend Sinister through to The Light User Syndrome. I wonder if he doesn't trust the musicians he has these days quite as much. Certainly, when they were on Later, he stood over the keyboard player, playing some of her parts for her. But then she is married to him, so she's probably used to this.
Re: He's getting right miserable in his old age
from Bend Sinister through to The Light User Syndrome

I have a couple (well, three or four. ish) of these, and the first time i saw them was during that period - '92, in fact. I saw them about '99 and they weren't as good. I'd say last night they were in between the two. Possibly closer to '92 than '99.

playing some of her parts for her

Aye, he was doing that too.
Re: He's getting right miserable in his old age
I saw then in 1990 and they was relentlessly mediocre. I think Brix had just left, which might explain it.
Oh, man. I think S&L are trying to systematically destroy the arses of their friends. I did that route with them when I first arrived, and I heard maniacal giggles the whole way.

Hope your buttocks heal soon. MIne still quiver when a bike passes by.
I think S&L are trying to systematically destroy the arses of their friends.
[ . . . ]
MIne still quiver

They aren't going to thank you for that comment.

22 miles. I shall up-load the track some time soon.
So when do you want to do it again.

And to the funky one, all I can say is a man who can cycle over ben lawers after not cycling since he was something like 6 gets loads of my respect.
The Fall once played a concert in Auckland, New Zealand, and recorded it for a live album. They hated the city and the city hated them right back. The album was called "In a Hole".
He's such a charming bloke, isn't he?

I think the only live album I have recorded over there is Rockin'nReelinInAucklandNewZealand, which is rather fine.
Somebody's been sticking envelopes through letterboxes in a rather nice Edinburgh suburb with "Do you believe in angels?" on the outide and money inside. Money as in tens of pounds.