Temper Temper – Bullet For My Valentine

I’ve see this band. I’ve even enjoyed some of their songs and if they come on when I’m in the car I don’t normally tend to skip. This album is playing now and, while it isn’t terrible, I don’t think it’s something I would put on deliberately. It’s not that good.

Stone Sour – Stone Sour

I think I bought this album after seeing Stone Sour at Download. I liked them live and they put on a good show. I think I would say that I don’t really listen to this anymore as it’s just metal. There isn’t really anything that stands out about the band.

Surrender – Chemical Brothers

I think this band made the song “Supersonic DJs”. I’m not sure. I do know that I bought this and Exit Planet Dust in the 1990s (?) when I had a very small electronic phase. That phase extends as far as The Prodigy and the Chemical Brothers. I really didn’t understand much else about electronic music, I think I always considered myself a “purist” in that I wanted all my music to be playable live and if you couldn’t do that then I wasn’t interested. What a knob I used to be. To be clear I never downplayed or slagged off other music I just didn’t like it.

I remember being on a car journey and the driver put on an Oasis album I don’t know which one, I’ve never really been bothered by them. Well, my emotional response to the whole album was one of utter coldness. I’m happy to admit that they wrote some excellent songs but when I hear them I get nothing. In fact, I almost have a removal of all emotion from me. I don’t know why, I just do.

Being older and wiser I think I am now accepting of “what I like I like” and there’s not a lot I can do about it. If something gives you tingles down your spine then accept it and enjoy it. Too many people in this world are not accepting of the things they like or other people liking it. I’ve recently read about metal fans moaning about Lil Nas X because he’s not a “real” musician and isn’t attacking religion in the right way. I’m impressed with the guy. He’s doing all the right things and I’d like to point out to the metal fans the “no true Scotsman” fallacy.

My most recent communication about the rage that infests my life was not as long as it should have been. I was going to explain the root causes of why I feel so much anger at everything but I don’t think I can write those things down in a coherent manner. I’m looking forward to seeing some friends this week so I can talk about things that have been getting to me. Currently I’ve decided that the State tries it’s best to keep people “just about” happy enough to stop overthrowing the State. That means that they aren’t working for us. That is just what we like to think and the image that they project. My evidence for the State not giving a shit is: Grenfell, poverty, minimum wage, Jacob Rees-Mogg. If governments were serious about fixing things they could. They just maintain the status quo to ensure the people are just about happy enough. They don’t care.

I guess what doesn’t help is having a bunch of incompetent “leaders” and utterly useless selfish tories in charge of the machinery of state at the moment. All organisations have their problems. It’s how you deal with them that should separate those organisations into the good and the bad. For instance, all organisations have problems with abuse of children or women but it’s how they safeguard those people and are open about the abuse that has occurred. If you are open about the things that have happened and you aim to minimise issues in the future then that is a good thing. If you respond like the catholic church and systematically cover up all the accusations and have done for years along with paying hush money then you are an evil child-rape cabal.

We have to have these safeguards in place because you need to remember that some people are arseholes. Those people will always exist. It’s how we deal with them that’s important. We should not give those people platforms. We should normalise the more accepting part of society. I see so much privilege in my working life and a failure to empathise with others that I am really concerned that society isn’t moving towards an egalitarian future but one of increased division. I used to think that in the long term the idea of society was to be helpful and inclusive, to look after each other, to be accepting of differences, to be selfless. But I think the human condition is mostly the opposite and I feel almost constantly sad. The world isn’t heading for some utopia. It’s heading to be roughly as it’s always been.

In my brighter moments I remember that change takes time and that there are people out there trying to do the right things. Then I remember all the shit that happens in the world. A wonderful future isn’t the default position of human planning. The default position is one of greed and selfishness. It’s up to the rest of us to do our best to persuade arseholes that being nice is the better thing [which should be obvious but people don’t seem to get it].

While I’ve been writing this the album has been playing and it’s perfectly good. A nice background hour or so of songs.

Suicide Pact: You First – Therapy?

This is one of those albums which I like and think is pretty good. But when it comes to trying to name a song from it I would not be able to tell you one. This is a “me” problem rather than an album problem. I’ve got it playing as I type this and the first song is pretty good. This album would have been recommended by Smith. He was really into Therapy? in the early 90s. All I know about them is that they are from the island of Ireland (I’m not sure which side) and they have some excellently political songs. As an album this is worth owning.

Studio Tan – Frank Zappa

I listened to this a few times after recommendations by Shredder. At this moment I could not tell you what I thought of the album. I know I didn’t hate it. But I also have no recollection of any of the songs. Looks like I’m going to have to play it while I write my next communication.

Strong Arm Of The Law – Saxon

I think I have a live album by Saxon and it’s great. OK, I’ve just checked and it wasn’t a live album it was a “best of” which is really the same thing. I have no idea if I’ve played this album. Probably at some point but I couldn’t tell you what’s on it. But that’s not to say it’s a bad album. It’s that you know what you are getting when you select Saxon to play.

Strays – Jane’s Addiction

Jane’s Addiction was a band that I kinda missed the first time around. I was aware of the name and knew people liked them but I couldn’t tell you anything about them. Then there was a reality singer competition show on TV and Dave Navarro was one of the judges. I think I first saw this show when I was in Melbourne, Australia. EW introduced him to me as the replacement guitarist from the Red Hot Chilli Peppers but I was more impressed he was in Jane’s Addiction – music from whom I still didn’t know.

I bought this album as an attempt to get into Jane’s Addiction and while the songs are OK there’s something about their style that just doesn’t do it for me. It’s a bit like Pearl Jam – some people absolutely rave and love them totally but for me I’m left a little cold. It’s not their fault, obviously, but I can’t explain it.