Thu. May 23rd, 2024

While on my van run today I continued with the Clouds playlist in prep for tomorrow’s concert. This time it was the Octopus mini album, then second full album, Thunderhead. So many great songs on those albums. Say It was a the big ‘hit’ from Octopus. About witchy doings, I remember Jodi dedicating it at a show at the Prince of Wales, St Kilda, to Elizabeth Montgomery (from Bewitched), who had just died. Ghost of Love Returned, from Thunderhead, is the definition of majestic, and dynamic. Starts off languid and all ‘when you’re without love/the sun don’t shine’, then Raff’s drums come in like thunder from the Gods as if to bring down the rain, which comes in the form of shimmering guitars. I love how it has not one but two false endings. When played live, it always revealed the newbies, who would clap at the first false ending (and sometimes the second). Last track, Rocket, ends with something like seven minutes of thunderstorm sounds, before the coda from Ghost returns one more time. They’re not called the Clouds for nothing. I’d forgotten how the song Domino features Jodi’s voice transposed down about a whole tone to make her sound like a man. This used to annoy me, so I made a remix where I transposed it back up to her normal range. I may put it on my song rebuilds page in future. Thunderhead was supposed to be the album to make them megastars, but they were so willfully experimental and perverse, as in what they did with Domino, that too many people were challenged by it. Even the big catchy single, Bower of Bliss, was covered in a fuzz vocal – and that’s before we get to them lyrics (‘such a beautiful thing is to fornicate…you can drink my piss’, yowsah!). What chance did it have? Anyway, that’s my theory. Of course, all of this is why they were so great.


Tickets for the Aespa concert went on sale today. I tried to get one, but the seating for those that were still available wasn’t good. I think I’ll wait until the concert gets closer and buy a resale ticket via Tixel. The MV teaser for new song Supernova just dropped and it looks pretty spectacular. I’ve got the new album, Armageddon, on order, and can’t wait to check it out.


I watched the first episode of Twice‘s new Time To Twice show, and it was, as usual, a lot of fun for us Onces. There’s a new title song and sequence, and the theme is Death Note, from the well-known manga and anime. The members are in this giant library with walls covered in books, and they’re tasked with finding their own death note book and some pens. A blue pen can erase a death, a black pen can cause a death. Of the game play so far, I can’t believe how mean Jihyo was, hiding some of the other member’s books. Nayeon got in on the act too, and both got some reverse-Karma for it. Damn, those members are super competitive! I like how this concept puts them all on a more level playing field. The previous TTT, set in a Squid Game park, with its daring climbing challenges, disadvantaged the scaredy-cats. Yes, I’m looking at you Momo and Nayeon! In this initial ep, my girl Mina won out supreme. She found her pens then sashayed up to a shelf, so calm, and found her death note book. Then she retreated to the ‘Death Zone’ to write her name in the book, in blue pen, thus giving herself a life. Her finals words to the camera were, ‘I will not die’. Yes, please don’t ever, my Minari! Blah, blah, blah, I’ll stop now….


I also watched Trumbo, the film I borrowed from my library the other day. Dalton Trumbo was a Hollywood screenwriter and member of the Communist Party, and the film was about his trials when he was blacklisted by the industry in the forties and fifties. Bryan Cranston, from Breaking Bad, played him, and the film was directed by Jay Roach, who directed the Austin Powers films (and is the husband of Susanna Hoffs). I must say I thought everything about this was great: the acting, the direction, the script (by John McNamara), the editing, the story, and the story’s pacing. McNamara’s script has been much criticized, but I thought it was sharp and funny. I think a lot of people just wanted to make a crack about the ‘irony’ of a film about a screenwriter where the script is the weakest thing about it. Once Trumbo is blacklisted, he is forced to write his scripts under pseudonyms. A couple of these get made into films that win Academy Awards for their scripts (Roman Holiday and The Brave Ones). But Trumbo cannot claim them. It’s only later, with the help of others (including actor Kirk Douglas) willing to stand up for him that his name is cleared and the blacklist, and those who support it, is defeated. It’s very interesting and appropriate that the two films he writes that bring him back to favour, Spartacus and Exodus, are accounts of slavery and liberation. But the film doesn’t hit us over the head with that connection. It seems right that Trumbo’s story has a certain amount of didacticism about it, as that was often how he wrote – and probably why he was blacklisted in the first place. It’s about making films with a conscience, with some heart, to say something important and meaningful. And I’m here for it.

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