General

The coffee labyrinth of my heart can only be soothed by these songs

Posted on Updated on

In the labyrinth of my palatial home there are many alcoves and avenues that stretch on, and wind on and mock me with how long they are. I have spent many hours following one, only to come to an abrupt end – suddenly a dark wall looms. Behind the wall must surely be a vault of some kind, perhaps a catacomb full of Pirate’s loot or skulls or golden treasures glowing like a faint sunset just extinguished from the rise of a curving hill. I go up to the wall with my small smoking pipe, press my ear to the cold stone and knock the pipe thrice against it. I hear the echo and with each I shudder at the vastness of a home which is only half revealed, half true – like an unfaithful lover telling you they have spent all day at the thai grocery store because they were transfixed with the colours of the pomegranate, beetroot and the ripe beige of the butternut squash, when in reality copulation of the most fornicated variation was happening on an obscene basis. I would not know what it is like to be on the receiving end of such an excuse.

I quickly run back to the chamber hall, pipe in hand, a dark gust following me and blowing my dressing gown up and whipping the hairs on my legs as if in punishment, a dark ghost of a gust, trembling in its might.

I’m now back in my chamber hall, recovering from the morning’s horrific happening’s with a pint of my favourite coffee – I only drink coffee in pints, I believe it tastes better in glass and a mug is never enough – Kopi Luwak. Kopi Luwak is the best coffee the world has ever produced, even if it came out of the butt-end of a monkey/cat monstrosity in Indonesia. Unfotunately, I do not lie, the ripe red beans are gobbled up by a henious animal and dischraged at the rate of a bullet being fired from an AK47, and the poor worker has to catch the coffee bean before it touches the dirty ground (it is dirty everywhere in Indonesia) because any contact with dirt would sour the taste of that coffee bean beyond recognition. The fact that such beauty – in the form of marvelous coffee – comes from such a bruteful animal is a perfect irony that I love, the irony of brute gives birth to beauty – in much the way people call me an ugly brute, but then I realise the beauty I have brought to the world. For this reason I have ten palm civet’s – the cat monstrosities I was alluding too – and they are free to live at their leisure within my huge confines. They are both ugly and beautiful, graceful in their movements – but too many times I have caught them down the long avenues of my home with cigars in their mouth, a dirty flash in their eye, making frantic love to one another. I recoil in horror and once again feel the dark gust whipping my hair.

Anyway, I want to share with you coffee songs. Songs of delight and mystery, as rich as coffee beans and as dark as a good americano.

This song is rich and black and full of umph! So delight yourself in it, over your favourite coffee.

Next is one of Bach’s greatest – I love the man, he wrote many of his best in coffee houses, and this is an ode to the beverage which drove much of his hard work. A rumour has it that Bach was down at his favourite coffee house, which he frequented more than a dozen times per week, and he got into an altercation with the chef about food which wasn’t warm enough. The spat ended with the chef throwing goat meat at Bach’s head, who left quickly and never returned – hence the line, “If three times a day I can’t drink my little cup of coffee, then I would become so upset that I would be like a dried-up piece of roast goat.”

A great for all the conventional coffee lovers out there, let Blur sweep you away with their mellifluous chords and tales of how coffee can heal the brain-dead, something I can attest to after losing my mind to ravages of cheese addiction, which was quickly sated after that cat-poop coffee eased me into level headed thinking. 

 

And last is ol’ Marty, with a beautiful rendition of what I think of as classic. Its as essential to my record collection, as the cafeteria is to great coffee. This song will play sorrow with your heart as you realise you know the feeling he is reffering to – or at least you will if you’ve ever been jilted.

Enjoy!

Devout in all matters of music, a practising monk who invites musicians to play at his monastery and pays them in fine wine and cheese, he's steeped in wisdom and knowledge. Truly a Polymath, he'll enlighten you with his knowledge.
Devout in all matters of music, a practising monk who invites musicians to play at his monastery and pays them in fine wine and cheese, he’s steeped in wisdom and knowledge. Truly a Polymath, he’ll enlighten you with his knowledge.

Songs that have been shaking the walls of the staff building

Posted on Updated on

Just a quick post, all music, no words. Let the music do the talking and such and such cliches.

Here’s a round-up of some decent new songs that have been playing in our HQ recently, our fav’s,

And a live one, fresh off the boat:

Mercury Award

Posted on Updated on

The most controversial Music Award in the world has received its fair share of the media spotlight recently. Calls from critics to abandon the award as a hopelessly pretentious and essentially meaningless accolade have been echoed from many voices, with Vice’s music writer Sam Wolfson stating the award needs to be “locked in a room with a shotgun and bullet”in a particular scathing but entertaining review.

The Guardian and Observer have remarked that this years list of nominees have been the safest ever and that any ideas the Mercury Prize is introducing people to new music is deluded. There has also been calls for the anonymous judges to be unveiled.

For me, it is still a force for good generally, as I haven’t listened to a number of the nominees this year including Laura Mvula, Discolsure or Jon Hopkins – and do remember folks that just being on the nominee list is getting good exposure for all those involved. Plus a few years ago Pj Harvey won it with her spectacular album Let England Shake – so the judges tastes ain’t all that bad. Elbow’s The Seldom Seen Kid was also a worthy winner.

On to this year’s winner. I was a fan of his eponymous debut, and Overgrown has been reverberating against the walls of our building  for some time. Surprising and also intriguing winner. His debut was also nominated, which might prove his credentials.

Have a listen to Digital Lion, a track he did with his hero, Brain Eno.

For those who want to hear snippers from all the nominees, check out the Telegraph’s good round-up.

And here’s a look at some past year’s winners, enjoy.

Baby Pete

Baby Pete's here to give you all the gossip. From his vantage point (stuck to the wall in a famous media center which can't be disclosed for legal reasons) he hears all the loose lips and hyperbole which he translates into perfect prose for you. Not bad for a five year old.
Baby Pete’s here to give you all the gossip. From his vantage point (stuck to the wall in a famous media center which can’t be disclosed for legal reasons) he hears all the loose lips and hyperbole which he translates into perfect prose for you. Not bad for a five year old.

One of the best albums of 2011

Posted on Updated on

An album which seemed much overlooked and undiscovered but, because of that, was all the more fantastic to find. A rare gem, it seemed to me at the time, and I cradled its tunes like a baby cradles their new rattle at night. And at night is when this music really hits you, when it weights heavy on your soul. Its got the power to creep up on you, twist your backbone inside out and somehow leave you with a pleasant drowsy warm feeling lingering in your head.

A splendid album with some songs which seem much too mature for its young author. They build and break like waves upon the shore. When they burst, they either flow over you with deep melodies or break off frenetically, with chords and notes spluttering – but rarely in an uncontrolled way. This last mention is partly a shame though, as it’d almost be nice to see young Trevor Powers – only 24 – loose his inhibitions and let a bit of madness exhibit the steady momentum in his build-ups.

All the less, its a truly rewarding album which listen after listen will only compliment. Also I’d say it needs a few listens to realise the depth of its power and resonance, at first glance I even found some of the synth motifs to be slightly annoying. However, more listens revealed its inner beauty, as is the case with many fine albums such as LCD Soundsystem’s This is Happening, for example.

Have a listen to July, one of the stand out tracks on the album.

Enjoy

Monk Chris

Devout in all matters of music, a practising monk who invites musicians to play at his monastery and pays them in fine wine and cheese, he's steeped in wisdom and knowledge. Truly a Polymath, he'll enlighten you with his knowledge.
Devout in all matters of music, a practising monk who invites musicians to play at his monastery and pays them in fine wine and cheese, he’s steeped in wisdom and knowledge. Truly a Polymath, he’ll enlighten you with his knowledge