This is a second draft of an extract from chapter 7 of The Wind called ‘Psycho-Geography’. After a boozy night out, the narrator makes a journey to King’s Norton by train. Anxiety-ridden, paranoic visions thanks in part to the prodigious amount of alcohol consumed and terrifying news reports in the Metro newspaper of crossbow cannibals in Bradford and crazed cabbies in Cumbria (dig the alliteration) give the narrator an altered perception of the world around him, seeing images of depravity in the towering Victorian terraces, mystery and supernatural elements in the woozy, blurred parks, and displacement and fear in the suburban districts – which get stronger when he completes his journey in Moseley.
The 1407 direct line to Walsall had been delayed, but the doors were shut ready for departure. Two men with name tags on indicating that they were from the same instituation pressed the buttons to open the door in vain, but there attempts to board were fruitless. The larger of the two men let out a spasmodic howl of anger as the train left the platform, sticking his face in threatening proximity to the drivers in their carriage, who looked on efficiently like train drivers do.Read More »
As stated in the last Prodigal Songs post – i’m 33 1/3 this year, and intend to release a long-playing record to commemorate this. This will take the form of my musical side – The New Jerusalem – the name coming from a) a reaction because of bands with ‘The’ in their name b) a reaction about new bands being seen as the saviours of rock and roll and c) because at the time of me recording music (2006/7) I was listening to a lot of Genesis and “the new Jerusalem” is the last three words sung at the end of ‘Supper’s Ready’ which I was really into. I did a handful of gigs to puzzlement, indifference, annoyance and sometimes adulation with the sample-heavy music backing coming through an iPod and live guitar playing – and now I think it’s time, as is the fashion these days, for a few reunion gigs, a retrospective, rather like the Stone Roses and Carter USM. I’ve decided to put a few tracks on this here soundcloud, which at the moment has demos and previously unreleased tracks on there, in readiness for their full re-booting later on in the year. Be warned though – the music is intentionally loud and distorted on some tracks – to get the music sounding right – so be careful on the old ears and speakers. Enjoy!
Like a lot of us old artists in Birmingham and the West Midlands, Brendan Higgins has been instrumental in sorting us out with support, experience and gigs for rather a long time. He doesn’t do the internet (in fact, he only got a mobile phone in a raffle in 2005) so I said i’d set up a Facebook group for him – have a look at it here. Details of gigs he’ll be at and the occasional video footage will be posted up as the news comes in. If you’re a fan (and you should be) go to the page, like it, and spread the word. I apparently had a dream the other night when I was approving my partner’s idea that he should be hosting the Olympics 2012. And you know what? He should be. For the uninitated – here’s something that’ll be on the National Curriculum in a few years time. If John Cooper Clarke can do it…