Talent in a Previous Life

Because It's Never Just About the Music

Monday, January 30, 2006

Thoughts of the Pops 

It's Monday! And, despite what we promised, our list of the 100 Actual Worst Songs of All Time is still in a state which can only be described as 'unfinished'. We will be kicking it off at some point this week though. Perhaps. Hopefully. Definitely before the end of February, though. Anyway, we have more pressing matters to deal with today: here's what we learnt from this week's Top of the Pops:-

Wednesday, January 25, 2006

10 Things We State About... 

It's Burns Night here in Scotland and, in celebration of one of Britain's greatest creative talents, people all over the country looking forward to sitting down in front of a heaving, bulging, fleshy bag, before piercing it with a knife and watching as a slightly unpleasant looking substance spills out. But enough about Pete Burns' lips, as it's also a night to reflect on the talents of Rabbie Burns, a celebrated Scottish poet. To commemorate this, here are ten entirely true and in no way made up facts about Scottish Pop:-
  1. Lemonescent's mini-kilts are currently on display in the National Museum of Scotland. But only because the girls still insist on wearing them while carrying out their duties as cleaning ladies.
  2. Sheena Easton is always quick to correct anyone who describes her nationality as 'Scotch'. Only whisky and eggs can be Scotch. Sheena, of course, is American.
  3. If you can't understand what a Scottish singer is going on about, then there's a good chance they'll be either Gaelic, drunk, or Gaelic and drunk.
  4. Where the Queen would normally be pictured, The Proclaimers feature on Scottish currency.
  5. Travis are probably our greatest musical export. Unfortunately the rest of the world keeps sending them back to us.
  6. Whenever Primal Scream's Bobby Gillespie says 'Yes' in the Scots dialect, he always follows it up with a Nazi salute, giving him Swastika Aye's.
  7. Texas are so proud of being Scottish that they always have a copy of the Daily Record on their rider. The fact that it's the only paper which consistently gives them good publicity no matter how awful their material is, for no better reason than the fact they're Scottish, is entirely coincidental.
  8. When the Queen isn't in residence, the non-arrested members of The Bay City Rollers stay in Holyrood Palace. When she wants to stay they move into Edinburgh Castle instead.
  9. When a Scottish band decides to include bagpipes on their record, it's a shorthand for saying "We've completely run out of ideas".
  10. Ballboy are really rather good.

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

Let's Go Round Again The Record Labels 

Despite the fact it's a prospect which is as exciting as watching two pillows having a rest, rumours are abounding that Louise is planning a comeback. Whether anyone will be interested given that, as it no longer exists, Sky magazine won't be putting her on the cover every other bloody month is an interesting theoretical situation, but it's news which has certainly got Dannii Minogue's attention, what with her label AATW being so keen to get the former Miss Nurding on board that they're throwing "making you top priority" promises in Louise's direction and generally making Dannii feel like a second fiddle act. The fact that, no matter which way you might want to cut it, Dannii is a second fiddle act presumably hasn't occurred to her.

Of course, the main news here isn't some vaguely contrived fued with a couple of girls who are less pop stars, more pop space debris, but that we're in some way still expected to be interested in Louise's music. To be fair to her she has had a number of top ten hits, but if anyone knows the tune to one which isn't either Naked or Stuck in the Middle With You then we'd be so impressed we'd probably find ourselves magically transported to a supermarket from the now defunct Presto range. Not only was she lacking in the memorable tune department, star quality was an area which she failed to satisfy in as well, combining a vague girl-next-door style prettiness with all the sex-appeal of a Blue Peter presenter. And given that all she could muster in interviews were variations on "Oh, I just love my husband! But I know nuffing about football and stuff cause I'm a girl!" exclamations, mixed with a few giggles and occasional references to sex - because she liked to think she was a bit naughty, of course - it's hard to see exactly what point there might be to her comeback. Surely she'd be better off waiting for the next series of I'm A Celebrity... Get Me Out of Here! to roll around. At least that way she'd be able to retain some vestige of dignity.

Eternal were a bit ropey as well, mind.

Monday, January 23, 2006

Small Apologies 


There'll be no Top of the Pops review this week as our video recorder decided that taping a watchable copy of last night's Top of the Pops was a task as impossible for it as being in any way good would be for Atomic Kitten (Jenny Edition). Suffice to say that Arctic Monkeys are number one, presumably thanks to the number of people who seem to be labouring under the delusion that "being witty" is exactly the same thing as "Having a northern accent".

In further We're Rubbish news, despite what our sidebar's been declaring since the start of the year, we won't be launching our 100 Worst Records feature today. This is mainly and, indeed, entirely due to the fact that our shortlist currently runs to 310 records and we're only up to the letter 'S'. We'd also like to point out that, while the attention to detail is impressive, the Guinness Book of Hit Singles does lack for both plot development and characterisation. And we reckon that ZZ Top probably did it. But anyway, we should get our list whittled down to 100 examples of aural excrement by the 30th and we'll kick the whole thing off then. Probably.

Friday, January 20, 2006

Hearts, Hearts, Glorious Hearts 

Jose Gonzales releases Heartbeat this week - don't bother rushing out to buy it, it's an experience akin to freezing your hand and slowly waiting for life to return to your fingers - which got us thinking: the average human heartbeat is 72 beats per minute but popstars, of course, aren't average humans; they're celebrities, which means that they're at least 10 times better than us ordinary mortals, but does this mean that their heart rate is 10 times faster as well? Probably not as it would lead to a short, but painful death, but to find out for definite we've spent this week pestering popstars and wiring them up to our portable heart monitor to find out. Here are the results:-So there we have it, and what have we learnt? Bugger all.

Thursday, January 19, 2006

10 Things We State About... 

Despite the fact that for many years it seemed about as likely as Hell's weather forecaster recommending the wearing of mittens or Christina Aguilera wearing anything that could be described as a complete outfit, it seems that the Spice Girls reunion will definitely be happening. At some point. Perhaps. But still, such vague speculation is enough for us to start camping outside our nearest ticket venue in trembling anticipation, even if the trembling can be ascribed as much to the cold damp nights as to our excitement. Anyway, to celebrate, here are ten entirely true and in no way made up facts about our five favourite females (old school version):-
  1. Geri Halliwell's fondness for hanging around George Michael's bins came to an abrupt end when she accidentally stumbled upon a horrific discovery: demo tapes for his next album.
  2. The reunion tour will open with five glitter cannons blasting out vast quantities of tumeric, thyme, paprika, cardamom and cinnamon into the audience, so as to literally spice up their live.
  3. Emma Bunton got so fed up with her 'Baby Spice' tag that in 1999 she resolved to finally become toilet trained and has now reached the Huggies Pull-Up stage in her development.
  4. Too Much was written after Geri asked to be paid for her involvement in their Walkers' promotion entirely in crisps, which she promptly gobbled up, despite the other girls protestations that the potato based mountain in front of her was just too much.
  5. Victoria Beckham has never read a book. And, despite having released an autobiography, she's never written one either.
  6. Spice World was a cinematic tour de force on a par with the Godfather: Part 2, Apocalypse Now and S Club: Seeing Double.
  7. After the Spice Girls fell apart and the less than impressive success of her solo career, Mel C has recently taken to making ends meet by moonlighting with Goldie Lookin Chain
  8. Girl Power proved to be such a potent force that even today Scientists still argue over whether it could be an alternative to nuclear power while conducting experiments involving Mariah Carey and a hamster wheel.
  9. In her prime Mel B was so scary that every Spice Girls video automatically had an 18 certificate slapped upon it.
  10. We want them back. And we don't care if that sounds wack.

Tuesday, January 17, 2006

Thoughts of the Pops 

It's Tuesday! And we were out yesterday seeing Belle and Sebastian play live, and they were very good, thanks for asking. Their cover of AC/DC's You Shook Me All Night Long was a particular highlight and no, we're not joking. Support came from a band who may or may not have been called Neukie Neuk, but given that their sound varied between being a bad Drugstore, a bad Low and a bad Cranberries - in as much as a good Cranberries remains a purely theoretical concept - we doubt it's a name we'll ever hear again. That's not all we've learnt this week, though, here's what last night's Top of the Pops taught us:-

Sunday, January 15, 2006

Crashed and Burnt 

It was a year ago yesterday that Charlie Simpson decided that he'd had enough of making music that people actually liked and left Busted to make unlistenable angsty nonsense with Fightstar instead. At the time there was a lot of anger directed towards Charlie for splitting up the band, but that wasn't particularly wise as emo types thrive on negative emotions so, much like blasting Godzilla with radiation, all it serves to do is make him stronger, or at least give him enough material for a second album.

Of course, given that the Son of Dork album is, to all intents and purposes, what Busted would have released for their third album, we should perhaps be grateful to Charlie for splitting the band when he did and saving us from having their memory sullied, as it seems that - potential brilliance from Matt Willis notwithstanding - the ideas train had left the Busted station. Though given the awfulness of Thunderbirds Are Go this perhaps shouldn't have come as a surprise. Indeed, given that Son of Dork themselves are resorting to covering Thunderbirds are Go on the B-Side to latest single Eddie's Song - which is in no way about Charlie, oh no - it's safe to say that the ideas train hasn't even bothered to turn up at their particular station.

So, with Son of Dork failing to provide the goods and McFly simply being, well, shite, where do we go for our Busted-esque thrills? Annoyingly, and we do really hate ourselves for saying this, the answer may lie in the form of Lee Harding, who was a finalist in Australian Idol. Despite appearing on a TV talent show, which is as about establishment as you can get without actually being a cabinet minister, Lee seems to be labouring under the delusion that he's some sort of bonafide punk rocker, i.e. he's played around with some red hairdye and make-up and has a variety of unnecessary chains draped around his person. Think Tabby from X Factor 2004 or a solo Noise Next Door and you're on your way there. Now, as those comparisons should probably indicate, Lee Harding is not someone we should be liking. In fact, there's a million and one reasons why we should be treating his debut single, Wasabi, with the sort of contempt normally reserved for Stereophonics releases - this piece by those lovely CFB Goes Pop girls should provide a few of them - and yet we can't help but smile like a loon and bounce around like a hyperactive Tigger whenever we play it. We know it's wrong, and we're sure it's just because we're desperate to get something to fill the Busted shaped hole in our heart, but we can't help loving it. Even though it's as derivative as a calculus lesson; even though the lyrics read like someone's quite proud of knowing a dozen or so vaguely modern sounding things - and we're convinced it's only for copyright reasons that an iPod isn't name checked; even though the song is about some apparently amazing girl who'll drop everything to sleep with him, despite the fact any girl with even a modicum of sense clearly wouldn't and even though he's called the song Wasabi, which is a pungent Japanese condiment, so to use that as a pet name for a girl is a bit like saying "You stink", we still think it's great. We're sorry, we really are. Maybe we're ill. Liking this does make us feel sick in the head, anyway.

Wednesday, January 11, 2006

10 Things We State About... 

James Blunt received a massive 5 Brit nominations yesterday which, despite all the overwhelming evidence to the contrary, means that he must be the hottest thing in pop music right now. To celebrate, here are ten entirely true and in no way made up facts about the whinging warbler:-
  1. Last year James sold 2.37 million copies of his debut album, Back to Bedlam, a figure which, coincidentally enough, is exactly equal to the number of people in this country who suffer from hearing problems.
  2. James doesn't like poor people, and insists on an exclusion zone at all of his gigs and public appearances, for fear he might catch poverty from one of his fans.
  3. As his biography is desperate to inform you, James fought in Iraq for a bit and, while he might be home now, peddling his music, he's still doing his bit for the war effort by allowing his songs to be used to help torture Iraqi prisoners of war.
  4. Goodbye My Lover was written shortly after James played his then girlfriend You're Beautiful for the first time.
  5. He's distantly related to the Queen, which may explain why his music is an outdated, irrelevant, yet seemingly immovable institution, liked only by Daily Mail readers and people with moustaches and pipes. And their husbands.
  6. James is actually Dido with a pair of socks stuffed down her jeans and a slightly more feminine edge to her music.
  7. There are only two experiences in life more painful than listening to a James Blunt album in it's entirety; one of them is being in attendance at a James Blunt gig, the other is actually being James Blunt.
  8. No one else in the UK has the surname Blunt, or at least they won't once the Deed Poll office finishes processing all the applications by those ashamed that people might think they're in some way related to him.
  9. James once heard some music that was exciting and interesting, moving both the heart and the feet with its expertly crafted lyrics and melody. He didn't much care for it.
  10. And he has shit hair.

Tuesday, January 10, 2006

Nominations of the Damned 

You know, we're now completely convinced that the people behind the Brit Awards hate music in all its myriad forms, except for the forms which can be lumped together under the "Godawful shite" bracket, that is. Here are the nominations:-

Monday, January 09, 2006

Thoughts of the Pops 

It's Monday! And the new series of Celebrity Big Brother is in full swing. We're already addicted, despite our disappointment with the lack of Jo O'Meara involvement - we even had a Kenzie Watch style feature planned, to be entitled Pan-O'Meara - but we do think that it's a stroke of genius to put a nobody in the house who has to struggle to convince everyone that she is actually famous, but enough about Faria Alam, arf, etc. Anyway, Top of the Pops has also returned to our screens once again, so let's see what we learnt from this week's show:-

Saturday, January 07, 2006

Slash! Aah-Aaaah! 

It's been a while since we turned our attentions to the icky world of slash fiction, but with a bitterly cold frost coating the outside world, it seems only right that we attempt to warm up our readership with a heated tale of pop passion, the likes of which have never been seen before, nor, if libel lawyers have anything to do with it, ever will be again. So why not join us as we bring you a little tale that we like to call The Virgin Suicides (or How The Noise Next Door Tried To Make it With Some Ladies). Enjoy.

It's October 2005, and throughout the land a sense of optimism hangs in the air. The Sugababes are at number one with Push The Button and they all seem so happy in each other's company that it's quite clear they'll be together for many years to come; the idea of someone getting to number one with an embarrassing song about a JCB seems like nothing more than the deluded ramblings of a madman; whilst people are still looking forward to seeing Peter Jackson's King Kong remake, reckoning that it won't be an overlong pointless mess with no redeeming features whatsoever. The country, in short, was happy. Or at least, it would have been had it not been for a pocket of depression, centered firmly on a three bedroom flat, somewhere in London, where The Noise Next Door were busy crying into their super noodles.

"Waaaa!", cried Ed, as he looked miserably down into what was laughably described as their lunch. "Waaaa!", cried Craig, as he half-heartedly pushed the watery/noodley mess around his bowl. And "Waaaa!", cried Scott, as he wiped away a tear, nearly poking his eye out with his noodle laden fork in the process. "WAAAA!", they all cried, together in unison.

Eventually, having run out of tears to cry - and having suitably salted their super noodles - the boys weeping turned into nothing more than a handful of pathetic sobs and they began to vocalise their feelings more.

"It's so unfair!", moaned Craig, "We should be getting it on with all sorts of lovely ladies every night, yet the only action that goes on in our bedrooms is our weekly Hungry Hungry Hippos contest. It's all wrong! We are pop stars after all!". At the use of the term pop, Ed raised an eyebrow, mindful of the fact that they played their own instruments, just like U2, Busted, and A1 in their latter days. At the use of the term 'stars', Scott too raised an eyebrow, mindful of their less than impressive run of chart positions. But while they might have disagreed with the language used, they had to admit their brother had a point. They were involved with the music industry - no matter how tenuously - and that should have meant a whole host of girls throwing themselves at them, if only in the hope that they might later introduce them to a proper pop star, such as Harry from McFly, Kian from Westlife, or maybe even Dane Bowers, but they weren't even getting any cast offs. "Does anyone have any ideas where we're going wrong?", asked Craig, "Let's hear them".

Hesitantly, Ed raised a hand and Craig motioned for him to speak. "Uh, do you think maybe it's because we triplets and we all have the same haircut, dress identically and all hang around together all the time, which people quite rightly think is a bit weird and icky, as if we only have one personality between the three of us, a bit like those transformer things you had to combine to make a big transformer.". "No!" yelled Craig, slapping Ed for his impertinence. "That's not it at all!". He paused, wheeled around on his foot and waggled his finger under Scott's nose. "How about you, do you have a bright idea? Come on, let's hear it, it can't be any worse than your brother's". Scott swallowed nervously and, with a slight stutter began to speak, "Uuh... Could it... I mean... I'm just saying, but... Uhh... Could it be because we're all as ugly as sin and would put the fear of God into any warthog who happened to catch sight of us?" As he finished speaking, Scott cowered away, fearful of the slap he thought was coming, but while Craig briefly raised his hand to strike, he lowered it thoughtfully a second or so later. "No...", he said softly, "It's not that. After all, Danny from McFly is much more hideous than us and he still gets more than his fair share. Our celebrity status should more than cover our, ahem, deficiencies in the looks department. There's something else, and I think I know what it is...".

Craig sat down on the sofa, fiddling aimlessly with an old copy of Time Out, while the other two looked on expectantly. After an hour had passed, and with Ed beginning to urgently need the toilet, they decided to press him on the matter. "So what...", began Scott, before being interrupted by Craig. "Silence! I'm still formulating a plan!". Another hour passed and Ed was looking more and more uncomfortable, tea time came and went before Craig finally spoke up again. "OK, brothers, the problem is this: It's not the melted plastic quality to our looks that's the problem, and it's certainly not our disturbing commitment to dressing in an identical fashion. No, it's the fact that we haven't stepped outside this sodding flat in months!"

A look of relief spread over Scott and Ed's faces, though the look that spread across Ed's face - and another part of his body - was markedly different to that which spread over Scott's. Of course! It seemed so obvious, no wonder they weren't meeting girls when the closest they came to making contact with a female was on Friday mornings when the cross-dressing postman was doing his rounds. The fact that most pop groups have hordes of girls waiting outside their front door was not a point that either brother thought pertinent to raise at this point, and even if they had done, there wouldn't have been a chance, as Craig had carried on talking regardless: "So the plan is this! We all leave this flat and none of us will return until we either get our ends away or it's time for the Smash Hit's Poll Winners Party on Channel 4! Are we agreed!"

Scott raised his hand, "Uh, why is the Smash Hit's Poll Winners Party the cut off date? Are we playing?", he asked hopefully.

"No.", replied Craig, tersely, "But I really want to see it and the video's on the blink again.", he looked at his audience, "Any more questions? No? Good. Right, let's go. Oh, and Ed? Go and get changed, you've soiled yourself again. It's not an attractive look."

Craig's Story

After leaving the flat Craig took himself down to a local cafe to think about the challenge ahead of him. He'd never had much luck with girls. At school they never really paid him much attention and, after an awkward incident involving a biology textbook and a pair of ill fitting gym shorts, the townsfolk decided that it would be in society's best interests if the entirety of the young female population was kept away from him. "Hah!", thought Craig ruefully to himself, "Their decision to imprison every girl under the age of eighteen may well have scuppered my chances of making the beast with two backs in any reasonable sort of time, but it did inspire our hit song, Lock Up Ya Daughters, so that showed them!". He paused in his thoughts for a moment, wondering whether a song that limped into the number 12 slot could really be described as "showing them". He shook his head to clear it and concentrated once again on the task in hand. As he did so he stretched out his legs just as a pretty young waitress was walking past laden down with plates of food. She stumbled over them, lost her footing, and looked on in horror as the plates came crashing down, all over Craig's slightly rubberised face.

"Oh my god!", she yelled as she produced a bundle of napkins and began wiping down our punk wannabe hero, "I'm so sorry!"

Craig smiled, perhaps fate had decided to lend a helping hand, after all, this attractive girl had literally fallen into his lap, and it would be churlish to pass up the opportunity. "Uh", he said, licking his lips slightly, "I think you'll need to move a bit lower, I think there's a sausage in my lap that needs taken care of..."

"Oh no!", said the waitress, "I'm more worried about all this tomato sauce I've managed to get into your hair! Gotta get that all cleaned off before it stains", and with that she began scrubbing hard at Craig's hair.

"Uh, wait", began Craig, wincing slightly as she tore into his scalp with real enthusiasm and ferocity, "That's not tomato sauce, that's..."

"It's really managed to soak in deep, hasn't it?!", said the waitress, slightly annoyed, "Hang on, I'll go and get some bleach"

Craig watched as she went into the kitchen. He wanted to get up and leave right now, before she went any deeper, but he didn't, partly because he was still hopeful that she might deal with the sausage in his lap, which was beginning to burn his thigh, partly because he was somewhat dazed by the ill treatment his scalp had been receiving, but mainly because the female contact had given him a raging erection and he really wasn't in any position to go anywhere.

It wasn't long before she returned, a bottle of bleach in one hand, a brillo pad in the other. "Right!", she said, in a businesslike tone of voice, "We'll soon get your hair looking normal again", and with that she grabbed Craig in a headlock, poured the bleach over his head and began treating his head like it was a curry pot with some heavily ground in stains.

"Aargh!", screamed Craig, "It burns! It burns!". He struggled but, much like a cute little kitten, the waitress is far too strong for him. "You don't understand", he tries, "I'm in a band, The Noise Next Door, my hair's supposed to be that colour!"

The waitress ignores him and continues with her aggressive style of cleaning, "Oh, I know who you are", she hisses, "No matter how unlikely that may seem, and that's exactly why I'm doing this. We've all had to suffer seeing your gormless, imbecilic faces gurning away on Saturday morning TV far too many times, so this is a bit of revenge on behalf of the entire population of the country"

"But... But.. We hardly ever do Saturday morning telly! No-one ever wants to book us unless every other pop band in the country, apart from Freefaller, are too busy! We've only done it once or twice!"

"And that", she said as bits of hair and skin began falling to the ground around her, "was already far more exposure than you deserved, isn't that right everyone?". The other customers in the cafe, who had all been gleefully watching the exchange while tucking into their egg and beans, all raised a glass to this while shouting "You go girl!", "Cut his ears off!" and other similarly enthusiastic shouts of encouragement.

"Aiieeee!" screamed Craig as the waitress began to erode his skull away, "Aieeee!"

"That's funny", she said surprised, "It's empty inside here..."

Scott's Story

Scott headed into town, guitar in hand. "I know how to get a girl, I'll impress her with my music!", he thought, stupidly. Despite the immense disinterest which his music had received in his career so far, Scott had still formulated a plan which involved him busking, impressing a girl with his musical talent while earning enough money to buy her a bag of chips and a can of coke for the bus journey home. The obvious flaws in this plan did not present themselves to Scott, such as the fact that he didn't actually possess any musical talent, or indeed, that he was the drummer in the band, rather than the guitarist. Instead he happily hopped on the bus, whistling what he thought was a merry, optimistic tune, but which for all the other passengers was a discordant mess, not dissimilar to the noise made by a Clanger in pain.

Scott found himself a suitable spot outside HMV, thinking that he could kill two birds with one stone by also helping boost sales of their back catalogue and, indeed, within seconds of him striking up his first song, two birds were dead, having fallen off their perch in shock at the unearthly noise which was presenting itself to them.

"Irgh knorghw tharght yourgh knorghw tharght shergh knorghws tharght yourgh berghter lorghk urgp yourgh dorghters tonighaiiiiet!", he 'sang', hamfistedly flailing at his guitar with all the skill of a seal playing croquet and without the "Awwww!" factor.

It didn't take long before the security staff turned up to move him along. "Come on now son", said one, "It's a bit early to have been drinking, isn't it".

"I've not been drinking!", protested Scott, as he gathered up his takings, which amounted to a variety of carefully written threats and advice relating to exactly where he could put his guitar, "I just always sound like this"

"Of course you do, son", said the guard as he moved him to a safe distance away from the store. "Here", he said, tucking a five pound note into Scott's shirt pocket, "spend it on some food for God's sake. And maybe a mask, I mean, we've all got the right to be ugly but some people just abuse the priviledge".

After being left to his own devices for a while, Scott decided to try again, this time setting up outside a stall selling cut price calendars, where an unattractive middle aged lady was attempting to shift Gareth Gates, Jenny Frost and Girls @ Play
stock to a largely disinterested public.

Scott eased into his set with a selection of covers, though sadly for the shoppers going about their business, they didn't include Sound of Silence, Silence is Golden or 4'33". Instead he stuck to ones which he believed he knew both the tune and the words to, even if you'd be hard pushed to believe that judging by the noises which he was managing to wring from his instrument. Having warmed up his audience so much that some of them were bright red with either heat or fury, he decided to throw in a Noise Next Door track, just to see what happened: "Better than Miss January/Fitter than Miss February/Girl,you make me hotter than July/August right through to November/You're more cool than Miss December/You're my world now you're my calendar girl", he caterwauled, thrashing at his guitar like it was a snake trying to attack him. Lost in the sheer poetry and beauty of the song's lyrics, Scott closed his eyes for the performance, not even opening them when one of the various missiles clattered off his head and not being even slightly put off by the chorus of boos which greeted each verse.

The song ended, and he opened his eyes. The crowd had gone, having run out of shoes to throw at him, and the shopping centre was deserted. They'd all gone, all except for one person, that is. As Scott looked across to the calendar stall, he could see the woman running the stall looking over at him with rapt admiration. She ran across to him on her short stocky legs and hugged him, enveloping him in her slightly flabby arms. "Oh my!", she said, slightly short of breath, "That was beautiful, and to think you wrote that song just for me!". Scott tried to protest, but he was still locked in her sweaty embrace and couldn't move his lips to say anything. "Oh honey, let's run away from this place, you can come back to mine and we can make sweet, sweaty, sticky love all night long!"

She let him free of her embrace just long enough for him to answer, "Uhhh...", he said. "So it's settled then!", she squealed, clasping him once more to her ample bosom and tickling the top of his head with her moustache, "We'll move in together and be lovers and don't you worry, I know what you're thinking, but it's OK. I don't mind that I'm a bit out of your league, I love you for who you are, not your looks.". And with that, Scott found himself bundled into her car, being driven away for an evening of rabbit-like lovemaking, in both the 'quantity' and the 'headlight' analogies.

Ed's Story

Ed thought long and hard about which lady would be lucky enough to be his first - which was good, as it was the only time that something long and hard would be likely to feature in his life - and eventually came to the conclusion that there was only one girl in the world for him: Molly from The Faders. "We've got the same hair and everything!", he reasoned to himself, "We're a perfect match. We even do the same sorta music, after all, they're a Busted with breasts, and we're just a bunch of tits."

Ed eventually managed to track down Molly's address, using nothing more than his charisma, cunning, and 192.com. Mainly 192.com, it has to be said. He spruced himself up, put on his best Top Shop t-shirt and rang her doorbell. "And hopefully not for the first time tonight", he thought to himself, labouring under the delusion that he was in a Carry On movie. There was some commotion behind the door, before a soaking wet Molly answered the door, her clothes-a-clinging and her hair-a-dripping. "Oh thank god you're here!", she cried, before grabbing him and bundling him into the house, closing the door behind her. "Right, bedroom. Now! You're gonna get no sleep tonight"

Ed grinned as he ran up the stairs behind her to the bedroom. He didn't think it'd be this easy, as he started taking off his top, ready for a night of doing it every which way but loose. Molly looked behind her. "Yes, that's a good idea, you don't want to ruin it, I think I've got the same one.". She paused at the bedroom door, "Right, are you ready? Cause I think you're gonna be pretty tired out by the end of this". Ed nodded dumbly. "OK, here goes", and she opened the door, to reveal a bedroom that owed a lot to the luxury cabins on the Titanic, not so much in the sense of it being a vision of ridiculous opulence, but more because a torrent of water was pouring down from a massive hole in the roof. Ed looked up at it, confused, "Uh, what's going on, Molly?"

"What's going on?", she repeated, wiping a damp lock of hair away from her eyes, "You must fix this (thud thud) ceiling! You can't run away. Plastering's what's on your mind. You must fix this (thud thud) ceiling! There's no escape. No sleep tonight, you won't get, no sleep tonight!"

"Oh.", said Ed, both dejected and resigned, as Molly handed him the requisite tools. "But I'm not sure I can reach that high, do you have a ladder or something?"

"No, sorry.", said Molly with a grin.

"Well what should I do then?", asked Ed, aware that he was walking straight into something.

"Jump! Why don't you just jump? You're out on your own and they won't wait for you to go, so... Jump! Why don't you just jump?".

The End

Wednesday, January 04, 2006

10 Things We Celebrate About... 

Of course, the problem with the first week of January is that the music machine hasn't quite swung into action yet, what with most pop stars being far too busy working off the extra pound or two they put on over Christmas to bother releasing any new music or actually, y'know, doing anything. Which is fair enough really, as we all know that anyone fronting a band is automatically rubbish unless their stomach is perfectly flat, but does mean that there's not a lot happening to provide inspiration for a 10 Things... piece, so instead we'd like to draw your attention to the rather fab Sweeping the Nation's Top 20 Albums of 2005 Poll, which they kindly asked us to contribute to and, for anyone interested, here's our list, somewhat handicapped by our inability to remember when albums actually came out:-
  1. Girls Aloud - Chemistry
  2. Rachel Stevens - Come and Get It
  3. Art Brut - Bang Bang Rock and Roll
  4. Jill Sobule - Underdog Victorious
  5. Hilary Duff - Most Wanted
  6. Half Man Half Biscuit - Achtung Bono
  7. Sugababes - Taller in More Ways
  8. Ladytron - Witching Hour
  9. MIA - Arular
  10. Franz Ferdinand - You Could Have it So Much Better
A couple of points:-

Tuesday, January 03, 2006

Future: Imperfect 

Happy New Year! It's now officially the future, which means by law we all have to start dressing like Girls Aloud in the No Good Advice video. But while being arrested for not wearing a slightly poor fitting silver outfit is a certainty, what else 2006 has in store for us is slightly more vague. Fear not, though! As we're here to guide you with a few predictions of some of the things which will definitely happen in the next 12 months, or our name's not Pete Waterman:-