KULTURE KIOSK

Hats off to the Scots!

Posted by in Culture, Music

SCOTLAND – THE REAL LAND OF SONG? It’s been just over a decade since I ventured north to Scotland (pre-blog) and while I’m not knocking being Welsh I have to admit our being known as the ‘land of song’ seems a little strange when you consider both our major bands (the Manics and Stereophonics are now industry veterans with very little coming through, save for possibly Gwenno). And Scritti Politti (our Blue Nile in terms of output) are even older. The Scots by comparison have held a formidable consistency since…read more

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David Sylvian: The Sound Atlas

Posted by in Culture, Design, Music, Travel

Writing anything at all about David Sylvian is extremely difficult. So much has already been written and a new level of vocabulary is required, perhaps words that don’t even exist. A body of work that is manicured, stark, at times terrifying (think Tallow Moon or The Rabbit Skinner) and strangely engrossing. It’s often said Sylvian has provided the soundtrack to one’s life so herein lies my personal history (though I hope it is identifiable to you the reader). I should add this is a long read some 9,000 words or…read more

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Boom Crash Opera: Crazy Times in Ordinary Heaven

Posted by in Culture, Music, Record Cover Design

*this blog contain affiliate links HEY-HEY, HEY HEY HEY! 1988, I was young(er) and Australia was having a birthday. To celebrate we (in the UK) sent our DJ Simon Bates to cover it. More importantly he played the new clutch of Aussie bands that were aiming for international super stardom after INXS. There was Wa Wa Nee, Big Pig, Noiseworks (I had no inkling it was Jon Stevens singing) and before I knew it my next musical crush were on. ‘Hey Hey, hey hey hey!’ ‘WOW, what was that!!?’ My 17…read more

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Scritti Politti: A World to Know About

Posted by in Culture, Music

OVERNITE: AN INTRO ‘When I was 17, (tell us about it Green) there was a world to know about (check it out)’ – Overnite When I was 17 there was a world to know about but I could barely step into a burger place in Newport without a cold spine shuddering feeling of urban paranoia that everyone was staring at me! Well being Newport they probably were but more importantly that burger place was a stone’s throw away from what was John Frost Square (name checked in the lyrics to…read more

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Remember That Night

Posted by in Culture, Music

EVERY GIG I EVER ATTENDED (…and Those That Got Away) HOWARD JONES, DREAM INTO ACTION TOUR, HORDERN PAVILION, SYDNEY, AUG 1985 Who Supported? The Expression The subtitle was too long on the header, I should also mention this blog contains affiliate links. So here goes… Having missed ICEHOUSE in Wellington a few years’ previous – see regrets below – and Tears For Fears (they played the night of the day I arrived) spewing was not the word! I settled on HoJo who was on album number two and subsequent downward…read more

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London: Nostalgia in the Now

Posted by in Culture, Music, Travel

THE NOSTALGIC FACE OF A NATION AND THE CITY *this blog contains affiliate links Nostalgia hangs thick in the air of the UK and especially with London. When I return to my spiritual home (Heathrow) literally a city within a city, a Vatican for avgeeks, I find British Airways are not only still flying the jumbo but some are in retro colour schemes recalling 1983 (Negus & Negus designed red union flag fin) and ’85 (Landor’s dark blue fin replacing the red and coupled with the BA ‘to fly, to…read more

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Liverpool: English Electric

Posted by in Culture, Music

PART ONE: IN LIVERPOOL The first thing you hear is the yapping seagulls, welcome to well, kind of the coast. Liverpool lies on the Mersey River which is more like an estuary and its main train station Lime Street is not quite as imagined. A series of tunnels lead to it and it’s hard to imagine why the hell the station was built where it is. It must have taken some serious dynamite to blast through all that rock! On top of that I take the wrong exit out meaning…read more

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Manchester: Shifting City

Posted by in Culture, Music

*this blog includes an affiliate link. STRANGEWAYS HERE WE COME Mucky Manchester as John Foxx whose Shifting City album with Louis Gordon was recorded and designed there described it. Obviously, I don’t know the city in the eighties but like Budapest the streets are alive with beer stains and sick. Manchester looks good from eye level upwards. It’s bustling, more so than I was expecting and at the time of writing the heart of Covid country. Now back to the blog and it’s that irritatingly pesky pandemic which has made travel…read more

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London: In Search of Croydon

Posted by in Culture, Transport, Travel

FOXBASE ALPHA My new home base lies somewhere between Heathrow and Gatwick; the two busiest hubs for aviation in the UK. However before those two got off the ground so to speak, the main London airport lay not far up the road just outside of Croydon perched by Purley Way. It is kind of what Templehoff is to Berlin. It’s a further walk from Croydon’s economic centre than I thought. Nonetheless as it was a glorious and strangely mild winter day, why not? The first sign is one of those brown…read more

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Athens: In Search of Hellinikon

Posted by in Culture, Transport

ELLO ELLINIKO In my first Athens blog I mention travelling via the then new airport in 2001 narrowly missing out on landing at its predecessor Hellinikon. In the third instalment of the ‘In Search of…’ blogs I went to visit the old and now ghostly aerodrome and was surprised at what I found (other than tumbleweed). Navigational errors mark the beginning of this adventure – I know I’m close but it just looks like an urban street; houses and a kids park with swings so I turn off and find…read more

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