Thursday, December 23, 2004

Boring? Us?

Over at Coldplay's official website, they've posted a Christmas video. The band play cover versions of Mistletoe and Wine and Little Donkey dressed in santa hats, while Chris Martin breakdances. Christ alive.


    Labels: ,

  • Wednesday, December 22, 2004

    What is this I'm eating?

    Over at NOTBBC, there's a 'fascinating' discussion on food that has it's name printed on it (so that you don't forget what you're eating). It shows how slowly my day is going when I've spent the best part of an hour trying to think of new examples.

    By the way, I wouldn't advise you to type "M and Ms" into google's image search while you're at work.

  • NOTBBC - The Playpen

  • Google image search: M and Ms


  • Tuesday, December 21, 2004

    "We're in number two studio at EMI at the moment..."

    A little seasonal treat... All of the Beatles' fan-club only Christmas records in MP3 format. Download them all before Apple's legal team notices.

  • Sci-Fi Hi-Fi: Beatles Christmas Records

    Labels: ,

  • New Janet in 2005?

    After a pretty disastrous year (wardrobe malfunction, massive backlash, low album sales, cancelled tour) Janet Jackson is going back into the recording studio to resurrect her career.

    Her secret weapon? Partner Jermaine Dupri, of Usher and TLC fame, is in charge of the project. As a fan, I hope it works... but I've never been to keen on Dupri's remixes of Jackson's work. Fingers crossed.

  • New Janet LP's 'Gonna Be Straight 'Control' '

    Labels: ,

  • Monday, December 20, 2004

    Red Nose Radar

    Now this is weird. NORAD, the U.S.-Canadian aerospace defense organisation, will be tracking Santa on their radars as he delivers presents on Christmas Eve. They even have a website for it.

    "Santa has never been fired upon accidentally as an intruder", the press release reassures us. Plenty of other useful information follows - from the speed of Santa's sliegh (nine Riendeer power) to what's under his red coat (a stomach that helps fight the effects of gravity).

    You. Could. Not. Make. This. Up.

  • Santa on the Radar

  • Track Santa online

    (The pictures are getting worse today, don't you think)


  • That's not nice

    Over at Musicthing they're gleefully spoiling my favourite instrument - the vibraslap.

    They've discovered that the mighty percussion giant was originally made from donkey's jawbones. Hence my hastily rendered artist's impression.

    Never again will I slap without shuddering.

  • What's up with the humble sinister Vibraslap?


  • Friday, December 17, 2004

    'Cause it's hot as an oven

    The B52's Love Shack has burnt down! It will no longer shimmy round and around and around and around.

    Pop fans shouldn't be too downhearted, however, as the BBC handily points out that the band will continue to be remembered for their "quirky wigs".

  • Cult band's 'Love Shack' gutted

    Labels: , ,

  • Thursday, December 16, 2004


    I've spent the past fortnight compiling two DVDs of my favourite music videos (including the Beastie Boys "Sabotage", as pictured). I finished mastering the discs last night, only to stumble across a website that's made almost all of those videos available online. Pah.

  • Pause Online: Music Videos

    Labels: , ,

  • Wednesday, December 15, 2004

    Small purple concert king

    The Madonna media machine has been busy making sure you know that her "Reinvention" Tour made more money than any other show last year. In fact, she made a whopping $125million in the space of a couple of months.

    But look a little bit closer, and you'll find that more people went to see Prince in 2004 than any other artist. A total of 1.5million went to the "Musicology" tour. The difference being he decided not to fleece his fans for £150 a ticket. Fingers crossed, he's bringing the show to Europe in 2005.

  • When Prince tours, he's king

    Labels: ,

  • Sony PSP: Bonus 'frisbee mode' uncovered

    Looks like Sony's new PlayStation Portable (PSP) has some design flaws. Not least of which is the fact that game discs seem to be flying out of the machine!

    More info over at gamesarefun, where you'll find a proper video of this animation I knocked up earlier.

  • Games Are FUN: PSP defects reported


  • Elmo loves you

    Having a shit day at work? This is 100% guaranteed to make it all better. Brought to you by the letter D and the number 35 (which, incidentally, is how long Sesame Street has been running!)

  • Sesame Street: Tickle Elmo


  • Tuesday, December 14, 2004

    And at the top of the hit parade this week...

    I started out as a studio manager at the BBC World Service about 7 years ago. Which is around the same time that they began to phase out the record players you see here...

    Quite distressingly, it now seems that there is a website dedicated to SMs past and present. And it has photos of all the training courses that took place at the BBC's nuclear bunkers in Wood Norton.

    All of which begs the question - what was I thinking when I bought that shirt?

  • Studio Managers Courses - October 1997

    Labels: ,

  • No more CDs

    Looks like my New Year's Resolution will have to be not to buy any more CDs (unless they're absolutely essential, of course). The reason: Toshiba have just announced an 80GB version of the hard drive used in ipods... for next Autumn. Considering that my 30GB 'discopod' is about 250 songs away from being full, I'll have to make sure I don't impulse-buy that Erasure box set in the January sales.

  • Toshiba unveils 80GB 'iPod drive'

    Labels: ,

  • Mama, I Love You...

    The Spice Girls loving ode to their mothers is the odd one out in an era where the main themes in pop are domestic abuse, broken homes, and violence. So, when Eminem sings "I just found out my mom does more dope than I do" is that a good thing or not? Why not read an unbelievably heavyweight essay from Stanford University's "Policy Review" to find out?

  • Eminem Is Right by Mary Eberstadt

    Labels: , ,

  • Nothing sounds better than an 808

    What's the best way to record a handclap? According to this discussion on, "pull up your pant leg and use both hands to smack the sides of your leg". If that stings too much, dig out a Roland TR-808 drum machine for the best synthesised handslap this side of an S&M fetish party.


  • The ten best handclaps in the world... ever!


  • Monday, December 13, 2004

    Video on vinyl?

    I thought I knew almost all of the video and audio formats that have appeared and disappeared in my lifetime. But this one seems to have passed me by - Video on vinyl discs, just like LPs. It was marketed by RCA in the early 80s, before being beaten to a pulp by VHS. Top marks for 'sound of the future' name, too: "SelectaVision".

  • The RCA SelectaVision VideoDisc Web Site

    The site also has a fantastic pictorial history of recordable media - from the Edison tin-foil cylinder to Tivo. You have to put up with everything being cross-referenced with SelectaVision, but it's worth a look.

  • The History of Recordable Media


  • Friday, December 10, 2004

    Peace and Quiet?

    How irritating is it to listen in to half of someone's mobile phone conversation on the bus / in the office / at a restaurant / in the middle of the movie? I frequently have to work through 15-minute phone calls about stripped pine flooring, as one of my colleagues berates his builders in exhausting detail. Luckily, design website have come to my rescue, with some very polite business cards I can hand out next time there's a floorboard crisis.

  • Download the cards (PDF file)

  • Labels:

    Thursday, December 9, 2004

    Too small to be significant

    Notoriously, the Great Wall of China is the only man-made object you can see when looking down at earth from outer space. But that's only true if you're orbiting around the planet. If you go a bit further out, there is no sign of human life on this planet at all.

  • View From On High

  • Nasa photos: Earth from the sky

  • Labels:

    Let me be mimi

    100%-not-mad Mariah Carey is changing her name to Mimi.

    In a letter to fans on her website, she explains that she now feels "free and unashamed to be who I really am". (i.e. someone else).

  • Oh Mimi! Mariah changes her name

    Labels: ,

  • Wednesday, December 8, 2004

    Guess the Dictator

    This is a bit like the 20 questions thing from a couple of days ago - except you get to pretend to be a sitcom character or dictator.

    It might as well ask "Are you Ellen from Ellen?" half the time, but it'll keep you away from work for ten minutes.

  • Guess the Dictator or Sit-Com Character


  • Best Polka nominees

    The nominations for next year's Grammys are out, with the usual 24736 categories. Highlights have to be "Best packaging", "Best album that is at least 51% instrumental" and the hotly-contested "Best Polka". Although I suppose there's still nothing as shameful as the MOBO's Best Ringtone award.

    Good to see Basement Jaxx, Franz Ferdinand and Joss Stone getting recognized, though.

  • 47th Grammy awards

    Labels: , , ,

  • Tuesday, December 7, 2004

    Where'd Everyone Go?

    Click the image...

  • BBC cuts 3,000 jobs


  • People are not too keen about your looks

    China's politicians are getting interactive - as the country becomes one of the fastest growing internet markets.

    Their foreign minister recently took part in an online chat where he was told, in so many words, that his face was scaring young children.

    His response was "My mother would not agree with this view." But it's not his mother who'll have been taking note... All online activity in China is subject to government surveillance, according to the New York Times.

  • Beijing Loves the Web Until the Web Talks Back

    (requires subscription)

  • Labels:

    Monday, December 6, 2004

    "Today, we don't know our enemy"

    Possibly the best reporting I've seen from Iraq hasn't been written by journalists.

    As if to prove this, some of my colleagues at the BBC News website have been publishing accounts of daily life from people living in Iraq. It really gives a flavour of how people on all sides view the current trials and tribulations of the country. Indeed, some of it is strangely reminiscent of growing up in Belfast during 'the troubles' - although they're not eating quite so many potatoes.

  • BBC: Iraq log

    Labels: ,

  • What would you do if I sang out of tune?

    Back in the 60s when Ringo sang off-key (i.e. most of the time) poor old George Martin had to patiently rewind the tape and get him to sing the song again. In the late 70's, Kate Bush came up with the technique of splicing together different vocal takes to achieve the ultimate performance on each song. Nowadays, they just get a computer to sing in key for you. Maybe I should take up that boyband career after all...

  • Retuers: Technology Helps Singers Hit the Right Note

    Labels: , ,

  • Thursday, December 2, 2004

    Look! A Badger!

    Why does Home Secretary David Blunkett's bit on the side, Kimberly Quinn, look so surprised all the time? Perhaps she has spotted a tiny sparrow?


    Animal, Vegetable, Mineral, Poo, Bum, Willy

    Remember playing 20 Questions at school?

    In this fascinating test of human reasoning, you had to guess an object by asking no more than twenty questions . Each question had to be answered with a "yes" or a "no".

    Now, using the full resources of today's advanced computer technology, you can play 20 questions on the web. Go to and find out if you can outwit your PC.

    And don't forget to play exactly the same way you did at school - by making all your answers swear words.

  • 20 questions link
  • Labels:

    Newer Posts ::: Older Posts

    © 2014 Discopop Directory | Contact | Go to the homepage