Tuesday, September 21, 2010


Tuesday 21 September 2010

My bout of insomnia last night plagues me from the off this morning as I stagger into proceedings in the manner of wreckage.

Eventually my alarm sounds and with Daybreak hardly serving to inspire me on TV immediately I nod off back to sleep only to reawaken at 6.16AM in a flurry of panic.  Its going to be a long day.

Outside it is yet another dark morning which suggests a cold climate and troubling times ahead.

My back is aching.  This is the ache that always comes from getting a new work chair.  I cannot allow this to persist.

Without question as I leave my flat there is shit strewn outside the front door of my neighbour and with it the whole communal area fucking stinks.  Hello day.

From here the drive to the station is OK until we reach the station itself where a dotty old cunt woman feels the need to completely stop at each and every speed bump.  Its not even as if she is driving a car worth more than £100.  When I finally park up and head towards the station/platform I giver her some kind of condemning glare (the skunk eye).

Once stood on the platform it is business as usual as I am beginning to find I am grabbing “my seat” on the train in the mornings again.  My OCD is satisfied.

From here the train ride is as per.  At Witham naturally Stare Girl sits opposite me and at Chelmsford Fading Blonde boards with her wittering fat friend.

Eventually we get to London where at Liverpool Street I spot Chinese OCD Man for the first time in months.  I thought he was gone forever but alas his red faced remains fuelled by a staunch determination to bring order to world beginning with straightening copies of The Metro.  He looks as stressed out as ever, it is a dirty job and a tough task.  Godspeed, sir.

The tube ride across town is OK until a couple of mental schoolgirls board at Farringdon and eventually by the time we are nearing Baker Street they appear to have gone absolutely mental, stomping on the floor of the train in some kind of rhythm.  I want some of their energy, now.

It is with relief that the train pulls into Baker Street and I am able to escape their exuberance.  From here as per routine I change onto the Jubilee Line.

Stepping into work things feel pretty good.  Despite pressure looming above there is no explicit leaning or pressure just yet.  It’s appreciated.

While sat at my desk in my apparent new chair (actually my boss’s that has recently been repaired) as 9AM comes and goes there is still no sign of any of my team.  Indeed the only other person that appears to be in the building is the operations manager.  We hang tough.

The apparent pressure for the accounts appears to have gone away.  So now after my rushing work on Friday, cutting many corners in the process, I now find myself having to go back and do work out of order/sequence, often doubling the task.  And why?  Because the powers that be panicked.

Eventually people begin to roll in as the day gets going in subdued fashion, not a whole lot different to any other Tuesday to be honest.

Before long we reach lunchtime and another special dish from the roving chef.  Today he has done us some kind of vegetable loaf.  Vegetables suck and I feel let down by my dinner.

Into the afternoon things get a bit tense as The Girl makes one Mindy joke too many and I get the hump with her.  It is only Tuesday and I already feel like I’m running on empty.

Eventually, thankfully and mercifully 5.30PM comes around and we all head off home in a flat stasis.  Tonight as I board the tube at St Johns Wood I spot a Mindy lookalike, only were she taller and more attractive.  I truly am going insane.

On cue I board the 6.20PM Norwich train as I continue to weigh up whether I am heading out tonight or not to the ERIC CHENAUX show at the Colchester Arts Centre.  When I arrive home roughly an hour later I experience some kind of fatigue driven breakdown.  With this I have something to eat, a coffee and then a quick lie down to chill out before eventually deciding to head out.

As I arrive at the Colchester Arts Centre, Staff is outside having a smoke and immediately he offers to get me in on the guest list.  Immediately things begin getting better.

It has now been quite a while since I last spoke to Staff (it would have been the Silver Apples gig) and I thought he had since moved to Suffolk but tonight I discover how/why he now finds himself still in Mersea and the latest incident that has come with his house in town he is renting out.  Its horror story stuff.

Entering into proceedings SIMON SCOTT (once of Slowdive) is onstage playing guitar from a laptop spewing and churning out a wall of white noise in the process which is akin to a cross between post rock and metal machine music.  I arrive at the arse end of the set not necessarily disappointed to have missed the remainder.

From here I join up with Lee where we shoot the latest shit as it quickly becomes apparent that the remaining acts are playing on the floor this evening.

Tonight DEAD RAT ORCHESTRA produce one of their most satisfying and best sets ever (certainly of what I have seen over the years).  These days there is a staunch sense of confidence and accomplishment attached to their performance that I have not seen previously (although I think it may be three years since I last saw them play).

For me this is their most framed and focused set yet.  At the risk of sounding over familiar I sense this is the sound that they have always contrived to muster.  Taking centre stage at the back is Dan on violin who helps form and layers the group’s sound as Robin’s subtle key and guitar lines give their set drive and spark while Nathan’s rhythm powers things forward.  At one stage Nathan additionally drops in some vocals displaying a true gift that they could do far worse than further employing/exhibiting.  It then later appears that he is trying to set fire to his rinky keyboard.  Exciting stuff.

The night comes to a conclusion as ERIC CHENAUX takes his seat in the middle of the room with the DEAD RAT ORCHESTRA behind backing him.  Plugged into his (semi acoustic) guitar is a huge wah pedal that gives an exciting sway and drunken edge to proceedings whenever it is employed.  It serves as a jolt to the delicacy.

ERIC CHENAUX proves the perfect act for such moments and surroundings.  From him emits a warm voice complimented by equally warm playing with solid songs structuring the beauty of life.  His voices reminds me of Lou Barlow/Nick Drake in its soft delivery while catering for a Will Oldham fan base as it captures and shines a light onto the sweeter moments of existence.

Early into the set CHENAUX introduces a song about an amazing ale he once drank in Norfolk that belittles the Canadian equivalent which immediately prompts me to think of that can of Sleemans that I had earlier in the summer.

In the end it pretty much runs to perfection served up in the ideal environment.

After the show I catch up with various people, mainly DEAD RAT types before noting that CHENAUX has records for sale which prompts me to immediately run over and consume.  I get into a brief conversation with the man as it turns out that he is from Toronto.  With glee I bring up my Sleemans experience/knowledge/anecdote before discovering that he does his own record label (Rat-Drifting) which leads up into a dark alley conversation about distribution.

I buy his new record called Warm Weather With Ryan Driver which leads to the natural enquiry “who is Ryan Driver?” which he said he put as the title in the hope that people would as the question.  Turns out he’s a mate.

Soon I am done and as the others head off to The Castle I head home happy where I catch the third episode of This Is England 86 on C4+1 which soon wipes the smile off my face.  The episode is harsh, displaying a gnarly grimness and the depressing rape that was inevitably coming as its conclusion.

I head to bed emotional.

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