American Graffiti

I have a meeting tomorrow morning that I needed to prepare for, so, dedicated and loyal servant that I am, I brought my work laptop home so I could prepare for it.

Unfortunately, it won’t connect to the works server at all (it usually can, but is incredibly slow), so I can’t access the software package I need to be able to do what I need to.

So it looks like I’ll be going into work early tomorrow. Harumph.

But don’t worry: I have used the time I had set aside for work constructively. By watching a new series on Netflix called “American Vandal”.

It’s a spoof of all the crime and justice documentaries – like “The Making of a Murderer” and “The Keepers”, both also on Netflix and worth a watch if you haven’t seen them already (and like that kind of thing) – which are popular at the moment, and is delivered with the same air of gravitas such subjects deserve. Shot using hand-held cam footage, mixed in with social media screengrabs, 3D scene recreations and YouTube clips, and including the film maker meandering off into evidential cul-de-sacs, along with the usual bomb-shell reveal and cliff-hanger format, it certainly looks like the documentaries it sets out to parody.

Except “American Vandal” isn’t about an unjustly imprisoned suspect, or a long unsolved murder. Here’s the set-up: high-school kid Dylan Maxwell gets expelled for allegedly spray-painting 27 phalluses on 27 teachers’ cars one afternoon. There is no proof that he did it, but the school doesn’t need proof: Dylan’s reputation as a disruptive goofball with a history of drawing phalluses is enough to send him packing.

But when aspiring filmmaker Peter Maldonado, also a kid at the same high-school, decides to make a documentary about the whole incident, he finds that he does need proof to show that Dylan didn’t do it. If indeed, he didn’t.

I’ll say no more for fear dropping of an inadvertent spoiler. Instead, here’s a relevant song:

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Maxïmo Park – Graffiti

Oh, and case you fancy watching the trailer for “American Vandal”, here you go:

More soon.

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Acoustic Afternoons

Back in 2001, The Cure released a Greatest Hits album, which came with a bonus CD featuring all 18 songs performed acoustically.

Obviously, that means there’s quite a few to choose from, so we’ll be returning here again at some point.

But for now, here’s one of my favourite of the re-workings, a song title which is not said to me on a daily basis with anything like sufficient regularity:

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The Cure – Why Can’t I Be You? (Acoustic)

Inevitably, more soon.

Sunday Morning Coming Down

Following on from last week’s post in this series, I’m going to be ringing the changes a little.

Instead of being restricted to just Country records, I’m going to widen the net a little, to songs which have a Sunday-morning vibe about them. That will probably still include some Country records from time to time, just not exclusively so.

If you have generally liked what I’ve posted in this series before, then I reckon you’ll probably like what I have lined up going forwards. Trust me, I know what I’m doing!

Consider this a bit of a taste of things to come. With a somewhat appropriate title thrown in.

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Spanky And Our Gang – Sunday Will Never Be The Same

See? Safe hands.

More soon.

Late Night Stargazing

Sometimes when I’m trying to decide what to post on some of these long-running series, I rule one out on the grounds that I must have posted it before.

Such is the case with tonight’s choice.

I read recently that it’s the 25th anniversary of R.E.M.’s “Automatic For The People” album this year. When I read that, I stopped for a moment. That can’t be right, can it?

So I thought back to where I was when I first heard “Drive”, the opening track and lead single from the album, and sure enough they’re not wrong. 1992 it was.

So I figured I’d post something from that album, but immediately decided against tonight’s choice on the aforementioned grounds: I simply must have posted it here before.

But a quick sweep of previous posts revealed that not only has tonight’s song not featured in this series, it’s never featured on the blog at all.

Often, when I post a song by R.E.M. a conversation about what their finest record is. Consensus seems to be that it’s “Country Feedback”, and I’m certainly not going to argue with that, but I reckon this delicate song of passion and beauty must be a very close second:

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R.E.M. – Nightswimming

More soon.