Little Quiz About Your Favourite Industrial Band

So, back in the early 90s I was part of an organisation setting up tours and concerts in Italy and Rome. Some of your favourite industrial and EBM bands passed through. Place your bets, ladies and gentlemen… Which band am I speaking about today?

Their singer stayed in a hotel with one star more than the rest of the band members – as per the contract…

The rider included an ice-making machine to be available in the band’s changing rooms at all times. Failure to provide one would see the concert cancelled. It wasn’t easy but we found one – they didn’t use it. I suspect it was a “bowl of M&Ms with brown ones removed” moment. Still, it was a bit annoying.

The “Truth” About Musical Gear Reviews

I don’t know if you’ve noticed this one but it is everywhere on Youtube. It doesn’t matter what the channel is dedicated to – music gear, car maintenance, photography, hifi equipment, artist supplies, etc – you name it, none of them want to say how they really got the product they are reviewing. I didn’t realise what was going on at first, but then I noticed a pattern: Youtuber starts review of some piece of gear with an earnestly open and seemingly honest disclosure, “before I start, a quick disclosure, blahblah company sent me this product to review, other than that no money changed hands, they have no say over the content of this video and don’t get to see it before it’s published” (I took this one at random from the very competent music gear reviewer Loopop – who puts a great deal of work into his reviews and are worth a watch – just don’t look into his somewhat questionable political views which thankfully are not divulged in his videos). That all sounds very nice and honest, doesn’t it? Except that one word near the beginning.

Bear with me for a moment – imagine it was recently your birthday and you were showing a friend one of the gifts that you received. “Oh yeah, this is what my girlfriend/boyfriend SENT me”. Huh? Sent? “Did they post it? Don’t you mean GIVE?” OK, so maybe they did send it by post, but we know it was a gift, don’t we? Why sent and not gave? Go and watch some videos, it must be a script they get with the product. They never say “give”. It’s always “sent“, and that leaves some doubt on the table that maybe it’s a loan, and that doubt is important. Sure, no money changed hands, but when the company gives you a €1000 digital drum station and sampler and you get to keep it then they kinda have just paid you €1000 for the review. Frequently it shows too – the reviewer treads a fine line between being honest and not biting the hand that feeds them. Sure, occasionally they might list the negative points (after the positives) but they never really say, “Don’t buy this”. I get it, really, I do. I wrote music reviews for several years in the early 90s for a number of alternative music fanzines and rarely would I write a really bad review. I figured that musical tastes varied immensely and if something wasn’t my cup of tea, I wouldn’t review it, someone else would and maybe they loved it. I also didn’t have to state that I got the record or CD for free (though often it was on a prerelease cassette) and seeing as I was also DJing at the time, and organising tours and concerts it all seemed fair and above board to me. And I really do like many of these Youtube reviews; people like the aforementioned Loopop and Ricky Tinez, Benn Jordan and alike have occasionally convinced my purchases (damn them). Benn Jordan in particular has been very honest and open (as usual for him) about his reviewing policies and I was rather sad when he decided to not review gear anymore due to the grief he unfairly received online. Which is not what I want to be part of either. All I’m saying is it irks me when they all parrot the word “sent“.

What is it about the word “give” that makes it so hard to say?

Killer Whales are Kinda Scary

Films like Jaws have done much to give us humans a reasonably unhealthy terror of the Great White Shark, but they are pussy cats compared to Orcas. Erroneously name Killer Whales (they aren’t whales, they are actually dolphins – the correct name would be Whale Killers) they like nothing better than killing Great Whites just so they can nibble on their livers like some kind of Sea World Hannibal Lecter. The sharks know this, and get the hell out of Dodge should they get a whiff of an Orca in the neighbourhood. Just how far they are prepared to run is nicely demonstrated by what happened in the year 2000 when a tagged Great White realised there were Orcas in the vicinity: it dived to 500 metres and then swam some 3000 kilometres to Hawaii, where one presumes it worked on its tan.

Dune 2 – Just how good is it?

The first reviews are in and most are overwhelmingly positive. One blip on the sandy horizon might be this one:

‘Dune: Part Two’ is a Dull, De-Islamized Sequel – JoySauce

Personally, I found the first one a little bland, though visually beautiful. However maligned and flawed Lynch’s version was, it certainly managed to explain things better even if it was all crammed into one film, not to mention the characters were also more three dimensional.

Video: The Oldest Goth Club in the World: Slimelight

Nothing quite like it, though back in the day I rather liked Wraith, a more industrial goth version and less punk. There were times back at the start of the 90s when Slimelight would start to get heavy at 4 in the morning and I’d be weighing up a nightbus home. Wraith on the other hand had enough to keep me interested until sun up and a bleary tube train home.

From Dance Floor to Dashboard: How Techno Is Helping Change The Sound Of Cars For the Better – Attack Magazine

“With the rise in popularity of electric vehicles (EV), car manufacturers are taking the opportunity to redefine the sound of the automobile. Aside from tires rolling on pavement, EV are almost completely quiet. There’s no engine noise because there’s no combustion engine. Because of various safety concerns, EV are required to make some kind of sound to alert pedestrians to their presence. Just what form that sound will take, however, is up to the companies themselves.”

The idea is a good one, but the results are still lacking something for me. The Japanese video in particular is like a long scream and got very old very quick. I like the idea of getting a Shepard Tone in the “engine sound” that never gets too high in pitch. Time to watch some sci-fi films to see how Hollywood has treated the subject of spaceship and other futuristic vehicle sounds.