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20 October 2012

you can't put your arms around a memory

"a reminder of the strength and pain of being young;
that it can't come again, but is for others undiminished somewhere."

-philip larkin

i went to see the perks of being a wallflower at the cinema on monday night. it's a really sweet film, just like it was really sweet book. logan lerman was brilliant as charlie and the soundtrack is really great too. it reminded me of all the john hughes films i loved growing up and i know that if it had come out when i was fifteen it would have meant the world to me.

it made me think of a lot of things. it made me think about how it feels to be young and still have all your dreams left to come true and how you never know what's going to happen to you. and it made me think about how lost and alone you can feel when you're fifteen years old and how much songs can mean to you. and it made me think of all the mixtapes i used to spend every night after school making and of all the mixtapes my friends used to make me. dexys, the smiths, cocteau twins. the soundtrack to the film could have been one of my old mixtapes. it was particularly nice to hear 'dear god' by xtc in the film. i remember taping that song off the radio and then taping it on to other mixtapes because i didn't have it on record. it was years before i actually found a proper copy of it. there's a scene where charlie is making a tape for sam and the tape runs out halfway through the song. i don't suppose many fifteen year olds these days have that happen to them. and as annoying as it used to be when that happened, i think they're kind of missing out.

"and i thought about how many people have loved those songs. and how many people got through a lot of bad times because of those songs. and how many people enjoyed good times with those songs. and how much those songs really mean. i think it would be great to have written one of those songs. i bet if i wrote one of them, i would be very proud. i hope the people who wrote those songs are happy. i hope they feel it's enough. i really do because they've made me happy. and i'm only one person.” - stephen chbosky

i miss making mixtapes. making playlists on itunes or spotify just doesn't feel the same. it's too easy maybe. i guess because it doesn't have to happen in real time, you don't have to even listen to the mix as you make it if you don't want to. i miss having to think of a way to end side one and begin side two and i miss the rewinding when i've changed my mind and i even miss the moments when the tape would run out halfway through a song and i'd have to rewind and use one of the short songs i'd always use when that happened. to begin with it was always 'please, please, please let me get what i want' by the smiths or 'the sweetest touch' by golden dawn, but then as i got older, 'girl's best friend' by kenickie would always be my song for whenever that happened. and i'm happy that we recorded 'god takes care of the little things' for people to use as their short song at the end of their mixtapes if they ever need one.

"so, i guess we are who we are for a lot of reasons. and maybe we'll never know most of them. but even if we don't have the power to choose where we come from, we can still choose where we go from there. we can still do things. and we can try to feel okay about them."

- stephen chbosky

when i got home from the cinema i made a mixtape full of all the songs i would have been listening to when i was fifteen. except it wasn't a mixtape it was a mix on mixcloud, but it felt kind of the same. and it doesn't have the sisters of mercy on it, which it probably would have done when i was fifteen. some things it's okay to leave behind. i've put side one of it here so you can listen to it if you want to.

we were thinking about making some mixtapes for people to buy on our pledge music page, but i didn't think anyone would want to buy one or if anyone even had a tape player anymore. and then i thought that we'd probably have to charge twenty five pounds for them anyway and that seemed a bit much. so i set up a mixlcloud page instead. i'll put side two up on our mixcloud page tomorrow.



02 October 2012

happy to be myself USA tour video


"i wish i had collected tea towels,
at least then i'd have something useful
to remind me of all the places that i might never get to go back to"

so, while pete has been busy finishing off the album in the studio, i've spent the last couple of weeks in the drum room next door, going through a box of home video tapes from around the time of the first album and the tours of america that we did at the time. it's been really amazing to see it all again. we've always loved playing over there and so much of it was just as i'd remembered it. there was about ten hours of footage and we were wondering what we could do with it all and we wanted people to see it sooner rather than later, so we put it together into a video for 'happy to be myself'. a song which i always thought should have had a video for it anyway.

sometimes i wish we could just jump on a plane and go back to all those places, but we've got an album to finish. hopefully once we've done that we can get start thinking about going around the world again.