Archive for December 16th, 2008

Dec 16 2008

Stupid Is As Stupid Does

Published by under Blog

My laptop, my house keys, my work keys, my Sky viewing cards (for the Sky service that WILL be installed this week), my USB Card Reader, a USB key with numerous photos, a compact camera, a notepad with a lot of good blogworthy material, a collection of Moo Stickers, badges, two books, a magazine, Anthony’s copy of The Watchmen graphic novel, a phone charger, a camera charger, an iPod cable, batteries, various nice pens.


These are all the things I had in the backpack which I stupidly left behind me in Insomnia after meeting Darragh, Maybury, Lottie and Daisy for a coffee after work.


Lottie and I left the coffee shop, did some Christmas shopping, walked down to the DART, went to sit down and then my usual routine of taking off my backpack seemed wholly unnecessary as my back was void of bag.


I froze solid as my brain hurriedly retraced my steps and worked out where I may have left it. I ran out of the station, I ran up Westland Row, I ran along Nassau Street, I ran up Kildare Street, I took a break as I was out of breath and my chest was in pain, I walked swiftly along the Green to reach a closed Insomnia Coffee Shop.


My heart sank.


In the back, I saw light. Then a girl emerged with a mop and bucket. I was never before so overjoyed to see a girl with a mop and bucket. I can’t imagine a time in the future that I will ever be so glad to see a girl with a mop and bucket. I frantically knocked on the door of the coffee shop. She mode some strange gesture with her hands. I pleaded with her. She waved her hand. I waved back and knocked again.


She walked towards me and was mouthing something incomprehensible. As she reached closer to the door, I realised what she was saying…


“The door’s open”, she said, pushing the door towards me.


Full of apologies, I asked if a bag had been left behind, but before I had even finished my sentence, she said yes and a second girl showed up with my backpack in hand. I was so thankful.


I wasn’t always so scatter-brained. What’s going on with me lately?


17 responses so far

Dec 16 2008

One Day International – Blackbird

Published by under Blog,Music,Music Review,Politics,TV

One Day International InterviewA couple of weeks ago, Darragh interviewed One Day International in Le Cirk. I took a few photos and managed to purloin a copy of their album, Blackbird.


I threw it onto my iPod last week and listened to it on the way home on the DART. The first track, Closed Doors, was nice. It was simple and sounded like a lot of middle-of-the-road pop songs out today. Though not overwhelmed, I enjoyed it and looked forward to an album I could right a pleasant review about.


One Day InternationalThen I heard the second track, Little Death, and my opinion completely changed. Quirky, with an upbeat melody fused with a melancholy lyric, I was excited to hear what would come next.


I wasn’t disappointed. Track after track of great tunes makes Blackbird one of the best albums I’ve heard in years.


Lead Balloon is a theatrical number, reminiscent of Rufus Wainwright‘s prime, while Sleeping on Trains is a dark and moody track, like a lullaby for a very bad child. Like many of the tracks on the album, it has a slow, wistful beginning which escalates to a damning crescendo. Maybe not unique, but certainly ahead of the game.


One Day International InterviewMiss Your Mouth, one of the most marketable singles on the album, is another beautiful tale of lost love. It’s a delicate with a memorable melody, without being a repetitive pop tune.


Shiver begins as an instrumental piece showing the perfect collaboration between Cormac Curran on piano, Eimear O’Grady on cello and bassist Danny Snow. It makes you think that this entire album could be a great movie soundtrack; this piece would be a flawless score even without the introduction of the simple and glorious vocals of Matt Lunson.


Not Over You has some of the finest lyrics on the album. Like much of the album, it speaks of loves lost but not forgotten.


Do you remember the moment we met?
I can remember we spoke about shortness of breath.
Do you remember not showing for work
And sleeping together late on in the afternoon?


Black is the Bird is the title track and deservedly so. It captures all that is great about the band. Beautiful piano sounds, haunting melodies, memorable tunes and gorgeous vocals.


One Day International InterviewAs I listened to the first half of the album, I began to draw comparisons between One Day International and acts such as Duke Special, Cathy Davey, Lisa Hannigan and Divine Comedy in particular. I was then pleasantly surprised to reach track 9, Aliens, which I already knew from Neil Hannon‘s version on The Cake Sale. I actually thought it was a Hannon penned track and I was delighted to discover that Lunson is the writer. A tiny bit of research told me that the Cake Sale’s producer, Brian Crosby, also had a hand in Blackbird.


Big Surprise and Darken Your Door close out the album on a downbeat and sad note. Further evidence of the theatrical nature of this album are in the lyrics of Big Surprises.


If you go down to the woods today, you’re in for a big surprise.
They’ve taken all of the trees away, right before our eyes


Darken Your Doors continues the melancholic lost love theme and as it ends I find myself clicking the buttons that bring me back to start all over again.


One Day International are playing The Button Factory on 18th December and tickets are available here. The album, Blackbird, was released in October and is available on iTunes here. For more information on the band, check out their blog.


6 responses so far

Dec 16 2008

Turn And Face The Strange

Published by under Blog

DarrenI met an old school friend of mine for Christmas drinks last night. He’s just back from a year in Australia, so it was great to catch up. In more than one of our conversations last night, I was reminded of how much I have changed over the years. And not small changes either – huge, dramatic personality shifts.


When he first knew me, I was beyond shy. I was nervous, timid and quieter than a corpse. I had the complexion of a corpse too. Skinny, sickly and permanently stressed, I was the polar opposite of what I became by the end of my school days. By then, I was über-confident, cocky even, healthy, talkative (in the extreme), could have most any girl I wanted (and I knew it). I thought I could do anything, be anything.


It wasn’t long before all of that came to a crashing halt around me – reality can be devastating. The person I am now is neither of those people. I’m certainly not shy these days, but I’m not over-burdened with confidence either. I’m chatty when I need to be and would like to consider myself a good listener when required too. I’m sure my relationship with Lottie has given me a grounding I sorely needed, but so too has it given me the opportunity to be free in myself, to take risks and chances knowing that there will be someone to catch me if things go wrong and I fall on my face.


I like who I am now. And, last night, it was interesting to look back over the way I once was and see the journey I’ve taken to be where and who I am today.


Anyway, there’s no great point to this post. It’s just something that was on my mind. Happy Christmas!

11 responses so far