Daily Archives: Sunday, 20th Aug 2006

The Martians are getting restless

BBC NEWS | Science/Nature | Ice geysers ‘discovered on Mars’

Hmmm. This is interesting:

Geysers spewing sand and dust hundreds of feet into the air have been discovered on Mars, scientists say. Images from a camera orbiting Mars have shown the 100mph jets of carbon dioxide erupt through ice at the planet’s south pole

Well, that’s the official story. I think the Martians are testing their launch vehicles for the invasion :laugh:

It’s been a wee bit damp lately

I mentioned that it’s been raining a bit. Yesterday afternoon featured a particularly heavy shower, which struck me as a suitable subject for a picture. I had to slap it around a bit and give it a good Photoshopping to remove an unwanted blue tint and generally improve it a bit.

Rain

Rain

It was taken through glass, so it’s not quite as clear as it might be, but I think I’ve managed to catch the actual falling rain quite nicely.

More practice, and more experiments to come…

Acousticbug

Well, well, well. It seems people do read this nonsense after all! My recent posts about Get Cape. Wear Cape. Fly. elicited a response from David Bova, who performs as Acousticbug. He says he’s not keen on GCWCF, and asked me if I’d like to have a listen to his work, which is available on his MySpace page. Well, I’m always open to hearing something new, so off I clicked. And I’m glad I did. :smile:

There are four tracks currently available, and they are pretty damn good indeed. Solo vocal, acoustic guitar and some simple backing. Now it’s been said that one way to tell if a song is a really good song as opposed to a good track[1] is to strip it down to guitar and voice and see if it still sounds good. And these songs do indeed sound rather good.

Comfort: The first thing you’ll hear on the site, and a good introduction to Acousticbug: David’s voice is beautifully clear, with the kind of gentle Scottish accent that I always find pleasing.

When all you want is comfort
all you get is pain
your trying hard to make some sense
your mind will go insane

and when all the world surrounds you
and trouble fills your mind
searching for the answers
with your heart and soul combined

Quite lovely. Well deserving of your attention.

Where’d The Moonlite Go: It has to be a good sign when you find yourself singing along with a song on the second listen. The lines:

but i dont know who you are
yet ive known you all my life

have lodged themselves deep into my brain, and they’ve made themselves quite comfortable there. Again, it’s the simplicity of the musical arrangement that allows the voice and the song to shine through.

Dress size too small: A live recording, which has a rather sad feel to it. But in this context, that’s a good thing.

To The Sky: Now this is something special. It sounds like it ought to be an old folk song that’s been handed down for generations, or at the very least the product of someone who’s been writing for a lot of years. But no. It’s been written by a young man[2] who’s just at the beginning of his career. It’s a familiar folky theme – the thoughts of a dying man:

I felt my breath expire
as my body
and my clothes
leave me now forever

but when will I see
the wind thats shakes the barley
and how love grows
on just a whisper

and will you fall for another
as your heart mends and recovers
send my love to my sister
send my love to my brother

And it’s sung with so much feeling, that it works quite wonderfully.

Acousticbug is currently unsigned. If by any chance any A&R type people accidentally find themselves here, can I just suggest that you sign him immediately?

And for everyone else, get over to MySpace and enjoy the music.

That’s the first time a musician has actually asked me to review their material, so full points for that. Oh yes, he gets extra points for listing Neil Young as an influence. :wave:

[1] Important distinction: for instance, New Order’s Blue Monday is a quite excellent track, but it’s not much of a song, really
[2] I don’t know how old he actually is, but in his pictures he looks outrageously young to be making such mature-sounding songs.

Angel of the North

Well, the rain seems to have paused for a bit, so I persuaded myself to to what I wanted to do last Sunday. It’s about forty-five minutes walk from Losing it[1] HQ to the Angel, so it was a bit of exercise, too. The light could have been better – either clear skies or darker cloud would have made for better exposures, but it did give me some practice in adjusting the exposure to compensate for the conditions. So in some of these the Angel is a bit dark, and in others the sky is totally burned out, but never mind. I think I got some moderately interesting images, and I’ll make a return visit on a day when the light is better.

As before, I’ll get round to tweaking and twiddling some of these in Photoshop at some point. But don’t hold your breath.

I’ve now had the camera a month, in which time I’ve taken nearly 800 pictures, which I think is rather more than I took in the nearly three years I had the little Sony. I’m not sure how long I’ll keep up that pace, but there are still things I want to photograph that I haven’t got to yet, so it may be a while…

This is where the angel lives:

GoogleMap

You should be able to see the shadow of the angel in the satellite view.