Jump to Navigation
xrayspx's picture

Scurvy Fundamentalists React To Tragedy

Music: 

This week we've had a massive tragedy. Dozens of innocents killed in the most callous way possible. Everyone, everywhere very, very sad.

Except for those devoutly religious enough to bring their unique view to the whole event. I've been reading statements to the effect that God did not intervene because he is polite enough not to go where he isn't welcome. That the answer to this is that our children should pray before every school day, also, More Guns.

Fixed Tags:
xrayspx's picture

The Coup & People Under The Stairs at the Middle East, 12/5/2012

Music: 

DEVO - Smart Patrol/Mr. DNA

Go Here:Read an interview with Boots Riley, by old friend and excellent writer Tom Andes. -- @The Rumpus

A very happy confluence of events led me to lie to Chris Portugal at The Coup / People Under the Stairs show. The first thing that had to happen was that the original venue for People Under the Stairs had to be unprepared to open. That venue is the Sinclair in Cambridge. It's apparently still not open as they're shuffling shows to TT's and the Royale.

xrayspx's picture

Password Policy

Music: 

30 Helens (and two Jesuses) agree, nice password policy.

My wife bought this day calendar to store in her purse and found these two horrifically disturbing pages toward the front. It's extra convenient, because if you get mugged, now the thieves can go home and log into your online banking, and clear the rest of it out too while you're all groggy talking to a policeman after waking up laying next to a brick with no purse. Wonderful.

Fixed Tags:
xrayspx's picture

Mike Watt and The Missing Men @ Brighton Music Hall, 10-17-2012

Music: 

The Pixies - U-Mass

We just walked in from seeing Mike Watt & The Missingmen at the Brighton Music Hall. The latest in our unintentional Punk Rock Legends series, so this is brief.

This blistering set was all of the album Hyphenated-man, which we do not yet own, but will tomorrow. It was pretty much beat poety, jazzy, hardcore rolled up in 2 minute songs.

Watt was looking a little worse for wear from his 2010 knee injury. I'm not surprised, because when we saw him with Iggy Pop (and The Neighborhoods!), just a few weeks after he hurt it, he was in a full immobilizer, and had to get on stage with crutches. Once on stage with a bass in his hands, he proceeded to run around and jump all over the place as if it hadn't happened. He looks like he's feeling it more now, which I know from experience really sucks.

One of the best bits was this cover of Machine Gun by Jimi Hendrix during the encore. This version has better vocal audio than we heard, if I find video of tonight's show, I'll replace this Iowa footage:

Here are the photos, they're not great, because the Brighton Music Hall isn't the brightest lit place in the world, but got some good ones:

xrayspx's picture

Public Image Ltd. @ The Royale, Boston MA, 10-15-2012

Music: 

Big Black - Racer X

Here are some of my favorite photos from Public Image Ltd. PiL played a long set, with no opener, and a good mix of old to new music. John's voice was a bit worse for wear, but he actually became better over the course of the night, I feel, probably due in no small part to generous application of Courvoisier VS.

We spent most of the night being systematically mesmerized by Lu Edmonds and his Buzuq. Natalie was convinced going in that Warren Ellis was touring with them, because she saw multiple sources mis-identifying him from previous shows. That's really a shame. They're similarly masterful, equally anachronistic visions of a late 1940's bearded man thrashing some poor instrument to death, but not the same person. I did get a sense last night for what it would have looked like if Wm. S. Burroughs were a guitar player.

The crowd was strongly in favor of this show, but artists need to keep in mind that Boston Does Not Dance. It just seems to not be what we do. Sorry. We were dancing in spirit, John. We get that a lot here.

A few pictures from the 27 I put to Flickr:

Fixed Tags:
xrayspx's picture

Unwoman at Outpost 186, Cambridge MA, 9-29-2012

Music: 

Soft Cell - Insecure Me

I have been waiting for half a decade to see Unwoman and finally got the perfect opportunity in Cambridge. Unwoman is Steampunk / "Corsetronica" music, a tag which I really wish would have stuck, but which it appears she and I are the only ones to have ever used.

Over the years, her music has gone from more electronica towards a more natural cello sound coupled with her powerful voice. Using loops, she'll lay down several cello tracks for a rich sound with lots of depth. The technique is not unlike Zoe Keating, however their results are very different. I may be completely wrong, and her normal live set might include laptops and drum machines, but we got the perfect show for the venue, an intimate and engaging cello and piano based set.

The show was at Outpost 186, to a capacity crowd of about 30 or so. This is why I didn't want to conspicuously take any photos, however there is good-quality video here and here. I have no idea what happened to the full video shot by the house, but if I find it, I'll update here.

Hopefully it's not another several year wait for the next show. Now that she has a good Boston foothold, we hope to see her back.

Welcome to Boston.

Fixed Tags:
xrayspx's picture

The Jesus and Mary Chain, Paradise, Boston MA 9-12-2012

Music: 

Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds - The Six Strings That Drew Blood

The Jesus and Mary Chain were a somewhat disappointing and listless live show. They really, for the most part, just seemed like they wished they were somewhere else. I don't know if that means "In front of a different crowd, on a better day", or "At home not having to slog it out on the road 20 years later in front of a middle-aged crowd of people who don't choke down pills anymore".

Overall it sounded all right, though there were many false starts that I would not have expected at this point in their tour and careers. I guess there are some times bands just don't gel with their audience, and this was one. Hopefully other cities had a better experience.

These guys really are a favorite band of mine and I hope they were more together for other crowds, don't like, not go see them, it's probably worth the gamble.

We really did both enjoy The Vandelles as an opener. They were pretty much super fun, wardrobe malfunctions not withstanding :-) Their name and style aside, they really were more of an early '90s band than Another Rockabilly Band, check them out.

I did get some photos, here they are:

I really do like a good zip tie job:

Fixed Tags:
xrayspx's picture

More people I've confused

Music: 

New Order - Dream Attack

This past weekend I had a pretty awkward encounter with two candidates for the NH state house, Andy Hughes, and Henry Mullaney. This was largely my fault for being lazy and not having had my wake-up cigarette yet.

I also never expected them to be Democratic candidates. It was frankly refreshing to see and hear someone say he's my candidate for the state legislature, and that his interests include protecting a woman's right to choose, and improving education options, specifically the state technical college system.

I'm much more used to having one of:

  • Canvassers affiliated with a Republican candidate, basically just pamphlet-hander-outers
  • People trying to sell me stuff
  • People trying to sell me religions

These guys were pretty friendly, if a tiny bit bewildered by my out-awkwarding them. In my own defense though, come on folks, this is New Hampshire we're talking about here. I'm lucky to know the names of my neighbors, let alone have a chat with my state rep. hopefuls. I expect this kind of thing in the south, but in New England, I only expect to be sold knives and vacuum cleaners or Jesus, in that order. If a candidate (or candidates) for office shows up at your door, don't drop the ball, give 'em a chat. Don't bungle the encounter like my staggering, un-kempt, still-waking-up self did.

You'd have to spend time around me to fully appreciate what "xrayspx Unkempt" can look like and why it might be jarring to a man wearing a tie.

In exchange for their befuddlement, I promise I'll vote for these two, as if there is some case in which my (D) isn't enough of a foregone conclusion.

Fixed Tags:
xrayspx's picture

The Gervais Problem

Music: 

If there is one thing I will always be able to hold against Ricky Gervais, it's that he made Martin Freeman just famous enough for him to be cast in this horrible Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy remake. Not to mention Mr. Definitely and the pixie dream girl.

I don't know if even delivering unto the world the gift of a round headed buffoon with a head like a fucking orange can make up for this crap I'm watching.

xrayspx's picture

OK Monster Cables

Music: 

Where do I sign up?

Yesterday I installed Ubuntu to dual boot with Windows on my HTPC. The idea is that it should boot into Linux by default, and I'll have a "reboot into Windows" button which will do a one-time Windows boot if I really want to run one of my 3 Windows games.

Mainly the machine is used for XBMC and MAME. XBMC works great in Ubuntu now, and with KDE I can tweak the sizes of every font everywhere in the UI, which was one of my big issues with Windows.

My main problem was with MAME and my joystick being all jumpy. For instance, in Ms. Pacman, it would stick "up", so that if you want to go in a different direction, you had to hold the stick the entire time. Games were pretty un-playable.

This only seemed to affect the left stick on my Logitech Dual Action gamepad, and it was driving me nuts. If I used the right hand stick, it seemed to work just fine.

I spent a few hours tweaking dead zones and such, which did work as advertised, but which did not solve the sticking issue. I booted into Windows, since I hadn't really noticed the problem there and wanted to check all my settings against my Windows MAME settings. What I found was that the problem was there, but it was more subtle so I didn't notice it.

So I unplugged my controller from the USB extension cable I was using (did I not mention that, did I not mention that I'm using J. Random USB Extension cable? Oh yeah, slipped my mind...), and plugged straight into the machine.

Rock.

Fucking.

Solid.

I found a shorter extension cable, which doesn't really work for me overall, but which does not have the problem.

Now I think the real solution is to have a powered USB hub screwed to the bottom of my coffee table, and plug joysticks into that (and phones, and tablets, and...and...and...) and then run that back to the PC. Seems like the best way.

What a massive pain in the balls for some 30 year old video games.

Pages

Subscribe to xrayspx.com RSS


by Dr. Radut