Musicians lie about their inspiration.

Musician interviews inevitably arrive at naming one’s inspiration. The formula involves picking your own genre, then rewinding to decide whoever was the coolest shit in that genre when you were in your mid teens and is still cool. Kraftwerk is a great one. Everyone knows Kraftwerk, it’s the cheddar cheese of influences. (I’d more likely mention Telex as that would earn a raised eyebrow from the interrogator, at the same time as being actually more cool in a daggy way).

Recently the game has levelled up. You have to name someone that requires the interviewer to fake recognition, and dive online when writing up the interview to know just who the hell ‘The Lost Jockey’ might have been, and is this a trap for the unwary? Like when I mentioned ‘Blorp Essette’, the title of a cassette by the Los Angeles Free Music Association, which mysteriously became one of the interviewer’s favourite bands.

But really, inspiration comes like a thief in the night. No one ever admits the real moment, so let me take the risk.

I was lying in bed last night listening to a storm trying to tear the roof off my house. I sleep just under that roof and so the noise is quite an experience. I’ve become intensely phobic about this happening, and to distract myself I tried to think of the moment I was first drawn to make music. Happily the storm lasted for hours so I had plenty of time to sift through the decades and land on just the right spot.

Sure, there were years with tape recorders, the old man’s Jazz 78s, sound effect records, but let’s focus on music.

It’s 1972. I am ten years old. My brother and I are off to see some disaster porn at the pictures, and it was about the time that they were starting to put some speakers in the cinemas that could actually woof, I mean woof louder than what you had at home. Make shit rumble.


Irwin Allen’s The Poseidon Adventure. HELL UPSIDE DOWN the poster promised and who wouldn’t want to see that?

Just like today you had to have a theme song. It was a rather drab number called There’s Got To Be A Morning After which got played before the film, in the film, after the film and all over the god damn radio once it won the Academy Award for Best Song. Never mind that. What mattered was hearing some big old woofers in a big bloody theatre pumping out some tube amp sub frequencies as part of well formed melodic structure. It’s a slow song, so what I was hearing was: DROOOOOOOOONE DRONE DRONE DROOOOOOOOOONE etc. with a person singing sweetly over top. It was quite an experience, and then you got to see Ernest Borg Nine clambering up a ship funnel.


Happy New Year! Time to die!

Now I didn’t then rush out and immediately start making avant garde. I went to see the Towering Inferno instead, not nearly as good. But when Autobahn came on the AM radio in 1974, it only reinforced that I like that Kind of Thing, and that I wanted to make that thing.

So from now on I am going to say that my inspiration is Al Kasha and Joel Hirchshhorn. They’re pretty underground, so you probably haven’t heard of them.

Wednesday Night is Garbage Night : ushers in the 21st century



  • First Sleep – Solaris – Cliff Martinez 2002
  • Two Space Cowboys on a Trip to Texas – Force Inc. 12″ 1996
  • … cut with The Horseshoe CrabsDion McGregor Dreams Again 1964/1999
  • Waking Expectations – Daydreaming – Rafael Anton Irisarri 2007
  • Obscene Back Porch Floating – Jane Doe Loves Me – Experimental Dental School 2008
  • Wind Up – Trial – Senking 2000
  • … cut with Nature Chorus : Frogs
  • Bauch Amp – Difficult Fun – Larytta 2008
  • Afrikaan Beat – The Very Best of Bert Kaempfert 1962
  • Morgen – This First Day – Fern 2002
  • Alaska – Monolake 12″ 2007
  • Deck The House = My Way – Akufen 2002
  • Regensburg – Markus Guentner 2000
  • Hotcakes and Sausage – The Old Codger 2004



Wednesday Night is Garbage Night – Autodidact Edition

Fantasy 70’s Music school.

Never went to music school. Like many people I played the same records over and over and picked up hints about how to do stuff. Maybe I didn’t know what it was called but I knew it sounded good.

Here’s a bunch of records I cribbed when I was learning how to make music, and present here so you may too. That also satisfies the elderly listening audience, while presenting ideas for the younger. If you want newer music, please go here: Phantom Circuit.

They are not particularly rare or high art but each has much to teach. Occasionally they overlap because that’s kind of how I used to listen to them back then. Just playing all these old things explains much more about where I come from than a wall of text. Google it. (Actually DuckDuckGo it).

  • John Cale Heartbreak Hotel the barest sketch/analysis of the original, discord
  • Daniel Miller and Boyd Rice Cleanliness and Order found sound source. pop music deadness
  • This Heat Health and Efficiency deconstruction of recording process at end, manual looping with errors changing the loop, symphonic structure
  •      +John Cage Suite For Toy Piano 1 (excerpt)
  •      +Beatles Revolution Number 9 (excerpt)
  • Cluster Hollywood very pretty and sounds coherent although unstructured
  •      +Leslie Hutchinson Broken Hearted Clown
  • The Monkees Valeri 60s stereo production is very interesting, a great slab of sound, vocal harmonies, reverb
  • Wire The 15th guitars layered like classical instruments, EMI reverb HARVEST BAND tiny little keyboard melody almost unheard
  •      +Konstantin Raudive Breakthrough voices of the dead almost unheard
  • Pink Floyd See Emily Play psychedelia, intricacy, EMI echo HARVEST BAND
  • Orchid Spangiafora Hold Everything sound music, cut up, tape loops, spoken word
  •      +The Barrons Theme From Forbidden Planet
  • The Monochrome Set Eine Symphonie Des Grauens interesting quasi 60s production, lyrics
  • Brian Eno The Great Pretender production, especially the prepared piano & EMS-AKS crickets, 8 track recording
  • The Flying Lizards Hands 2 Take bassoon punk! dub technique, anti-guitar solos
  • Yellow Magic Orchestra Pure Jam tightness, neo psychedelia, analogue sequencer + real drums, seriously that guy is a drum machine
  • Suicide Dream Baby Dream minimal synth! lo fi, warmth, drones
  •      + The Lost Jockey Rise & Fall because these two fight each other nicely
  • Kraftwerk Pocket Calculator funkiness completely lost when remade later because they did not leave holes, electronic dub, less is more, HOLES
  •      +Subbulakshmi sitar drones FILLS HOLES
  • Dangerous Liaisons Los Ninos Del Porque grinding + holes, electronic punk, voices
  •      +Vincent Price The Broomstick Railroad widdershins
  • Holger Hiller Chemical & Physical Discoveries early sampling, was intriguing at the time
  • Beatles Tomorrow Never Knows tape loops, tape everything
  • Smegma Can’t Look Straight sound music, cut up
  • DEVO Satisfaction the barest sketch/analysis of the original, HOLES
  • Mark Stewart Blessed Are Those Who Struggle intense destructive dub
  • Chrome Half Machine Lip Moves heavy distortion as a musical device
  • Popol Vuh Aguirre Wrath Of God air
  •      +Throbbing Gristle IBM air
  • Wirlywhirld Window To The World 70’s keyboard rock, Australian post punk, pretty
  • Sparks Angus Desire it’s a song about screwing cows and sounds oddly buttery?
  • Snatch & Eno RAF looping found sounds funk
  • Status Quo Pictures of Matchstick Men psychedelia, tinnitus
  • Telex A.B. electropop
  • The Reels 3. electropop, early 80’s snare used like a kick
  • Simple Minds In Trance As Mission the negative of a bass riff, playing guitars like a cuckoo clock
  •      +Steve Reich It’s Gonna Rain strangely have a lot in common
  • General Strike Parts Of My Body tuba punk! dub

listen (This is a m3u file which can be associated with QuickTime PLayer, Windows Media Player or iTunes to stream the file.)

They all share some kind of internal principle, a process stated or unknown, a feature that can be recognized and practised. They are also attractive, there is no ‘difficult listening’ here. To make something that is both pretty and deep is far more interesting than noise.

Saturday night is garbage night.

Been asked to be a DJ at this event. I know nothing about it apart from what you read here. If you happen to be at this event by design or by accident, you will at one point hear me play music, which could be good, but might not be. I think I will go on early as I am an old codger.

Now, I have a question about Unity3D so I will browse…

A site for users of Unity to ask questions and get help from the community and employees.

There are 42870 questions. Showing most relevant.

I have all the bones and the magic shield and I’m at the bit where the gorilla is swinging on the chain knocking all cars the onto the boat. So I’m waiting for the umbrella sound, you know, that pffwwt! sound that an umbrella makes and I don’t hear it and I don’t know what I am supposed to do next?

Was that grey face that leaned over my crib sometimes when we were living in Perth, a kind of thin sad face, was that my real father?


Why wont kitty move??? (bump)



She must like me otherwise she wouldn’t have come to the party at all even though she hung around with her friend all night she kept looking at me like she was waiting for me to do something but if she should have come over and said something. Sorry that wasn’t a question.

Cheapest deal on cuttlefish. Got 15 birds, need quality cuttlefish. Sunshine Vic.


What does “Eliphalet Wickes” actually mean? I’m serious about this.



Does GUI.changed work with DrawDefaultInspector? If not is there an alternative solution? GUI.changed is always returning false.


Which season of Lost was it where the guy that was living in the tail part of the island who had the hut under a tree or something and he’d buried teeth, I think it was teeth and they turned into skeletons or maybe Im getting this confused with some other film I saw???

Would you agree that Frederick William I was not subject to predestination until such time as he became conversant of the tenet?


Why won’t kitty move?


LikLik Retpela Hat

Here it is. My contribution to the Gay And Lesbian Mardi Gras. Or as the mouth breathing scum that rejoice in the title ‘common people’ call it: “The Mardi Gras” with all that pervert stuff taken out. Oh they will be there – the radio has been pumping ‘I Will Survive” all week. Every straight guy within a km of Oxford Street is lisping and mincing but will be back to bashing pooftas and Muslims next week. Woo! Woo!

If I had a float, it would have Superintendent Mike Thomas on it. I don’t know what he looked like but he’d be the main attraction. I reckon. I think he was the Phantom.

Or Condoman, who as a near brother of the Phantom did all he could to save the indigenous population from AIDS. Back when we had Labor government. Don’t get me started, I can usually hold my inner Bolshie in check but the mouth breathers have been particularly bad recently.

Perhaps why Pauline Pantsdown is doing a show this weekend. Whenever I feel a bit queasy about going out and doing more shows I thank god that unlike Simon at least I don’t have to put back on the greasepaint. But it’s started to slide again and somebody has to …

INTERMISSION – Some drunk English dolly bird has fallen out of the Cricketers Arms into in my doorway babbling glottal stops on her smart phone like a parody of every UK Washed Up Raver Moved To The Colonies – “nah mate, it’s called Dub Side Of The Moon, Geddit? Drum And Bass! Wicked! Australians GO OFF this Mardi Gras mate not like back home of course what time is it there yeah got a job here cold calling gonna go to Thailand next” etc. etc.

If we are going to put people “on the boats and send them back” like the mouth breathers want can we start with this lot thanks. At least get out of my fucking doorway thank you. There, peace again.

Anyway. Simon teaches sound production at KUNST KAMP and is rightly known as one of the few locals to raise a ruckus over the evil racist shit that was going on at the time. He was rewarded with some popularity which didn’t save him from a bollocking at the same Homebake festival at which we performed in 1998. Of course the kids think something is hilarious, but even more hilarious is to beat up the person who did it. Then forget.

(sips his Victory Gin). No hope in the Proles.

This is getting maudlin. We need a joke. So the young bohemians are in need of a model again. Seems that Olde Darlinghurst is back in style, and they have discovered Madeleine Preston’s photo archive from the 1980’s. I enjoy this because I was there, but I can’t imagine why anyone else would. For example, my old drum machine:

Will the youth of today set fire to theirs so it looks chic toasted? Anyway the joke is a fashion glossy is going to be covering that extremely chic band Severed Heads and wondered if I had a bigger copy of:

Such style! Such Poise! And some minimal synth! He looks like he just realised he needs to go to the toilet and the synthesiser is too heavy to lift. The reality is it’s 1984 and I think we’re doing something for City Slab Horror. The scary thing is half the people I recognise in this photo archive are already dead.

I quite like this one:

The party is really swinging! On the floor is Bradbury and Cornaga probably arguing about something. On the bed please admire my taste in red socks and cheap trousers. Only the best from the local opportunity shop! Obviously rapt in conversation and cheap cask wine is the divine Chlorine Presley Smith who was the woman who tolerated me at the time. This is what people did before the Internet folks! Glower at each other.

(sips his Victory Gin.)

WNIGN: Tripela Liklik Pik

Superintendent Mike Thomas tells the story of Tripela Liklik Pik on a flexidisc produced by the ABC in Port Moresby. The recording is from 1960, but my cover is slightly different to the version that the ABC had as a stream, it might be a second pressing.

It is of course The Three Little Pigs in New Guinea Pidgin – ‘three-fella smaller pig’. The wolf is a wail dok – ‘wild dog’.

No one in my family ever learned Pidgin but we picked up a few terms like kaikai that got thrown a bit around the haus. This particular language is now called Tok Pisin and covered here.

r184339_684388The art is by Jane Lodge.

The sound is here. So that you can read along here is the tale in English and Pidgin!

If you are very good I will next post the flexidisc of Liklik Retpela Hat. Otherwise I’ll post the flexidisc of Allegron For Your Pensioners. The choice is yours!

WNIGN: English Music

The English have distinct tastes. Sexually, “English” means a lot of whacking of bottoms. You can get your head dumped down a toilet as well if you pay the lady enough. Then there’s English cooking which involves wrapping the intestines of a smaller animal inside the intestines of a larger animal. That and turnips. Which is why England invaded India to get decent meals.

If it weren’t for Ireland they wouldn’t have chips and they took on Scotland for the pizza buttie. Hence the UK.

Anyway, one thing of which England is rightly proud is their music. So rather than drag out some more Mysterious East, let’s go back to the mother country for some of that fine English music culture.

Click to pick up steam!

Trains In Trouble is a compilation of ‘steam engines in difficulties, with goods’. Thrill at the pulsing sounds as a v2 class ‘belching steam from the front end but making surprisingly good progress, heads past Usan Signal Box’. Or how about the V2 that has ‘considerable trouble getting a grip on drizzle dampened rails’, ‘driving wheels wildly slipping’ off up the 1 to 200 Stoke Summit. All the stories are told right here on the extensive cassette sleeve notes.

This is the ultimate in locomotive non-action. Engine failure and dismal English weather one on one. As if Harold Pinter rewrote Thomas The Tank Engine and then hanged himself.

Click for more drizzle.

An Argo cassette of 1979 but with recordings ranging back to the 1950’s, it was produced by prominent recordist Peter Handford. Possibly neither will bother but are welcome to have it removed. Argo by the way was the part of Decca records that was usually associated with lutes. Renaissance music and locomotives – we seemed to have a bloody lot of it in the family home.

If you find this kind of thing vaguely erotic please go here.

WNIGN: Shaken, not Stirred

In daily life he seemed reserved. Bashful. You would not give this small man in a suit a second glance. You would be very wrong.

This man was The Elvis of Malaysia, The Singing Lawyer. He could paint your portrait in oils while serenading you in three languages and then sue your pants off. He once sang in the street and 100,000 people stopped to hear, several of whom died from intense pleasure. He hosted a game show which he won every week. He was eventually assassinated by Stock, Aitken & Waterman by making him sing with Kylie.

But it is not until you open the cassette and look inside that you know just who you are dealing with.

There is no way I am going to upload music by Sudirman here. He would come back to life and rip my spine out. Then sue me.

Instead we will have Jenny.

Click to see her mole.

Say what you like about her vibrato, she can sure belt it out. The windows rattle and the dogs howl for miles. I used a little bit of this on one of my own recordings. Maybe you can spot it.

WNIGN: The invention of RnB.

Many people consider RnB music to be an invention of African American origin. Nothing is further from the truth. RnB was invented by the Stylers, the most important band in popular music history. I provide here proof in the form of recorded music.

Hokkien Songs

You will note the interchange between deep male spoken voice and sweet female singing along the with the smooth melodic shifts that are the hallmark of RnB. Truly the Stylers are forgotten innovators.

And honest. Sometimes it is difficult to know exactly what you are buying from a record cover. I am not able to read the text but I can assure you that what you see on the cover is exactly what you get.


Part of the ‘only about 500 more cassettes to go’ series.