Taped crusader: my cluttered collection of cassettes

I’ve had a pile of cassette tapes gathering dust for maybe 15 years. I figured it was time to go through them. Sorting through some old belongings, I discovered an old walkman that still worked. Bingo! What would be on these dusty old tanglers? I was mostly hoping to find a phone interview I did with Nivek Ogre, or a face-to-face with Fear Factory, neither of which saw the light of day thanks to a mishap in a house move. They must have been in the other pile of tapes, which got damaged. Nope. On this one, I found …


It’s in a Smashing Pumpkins sleeve, but is actually a bootleg of Ministry in 1994. I went through a brief phase of picking up dodgy tapes – cassettes and videos – from the Camden Market. The bloke on the stall claimed to be mates with Killing Joke, and said they let him onto the stage to stand at the side to get the best footage. I never bought one of his Killing Joke tapes, but I did walk away with Skinny Puppy’s 1986 Ain’t It Dead Yet and NIN in Dallas, 1990. I’m guessing this is from that market stall.

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Line-ups that make (or break) the band

New on Collapse Board

When the two old enemies embraced this week in London, many fans were wondering if the decades-long feud was finally and fully laid to rest. Would there be a Pink Floyd reunion? A new tour? A new album? Realistically, isn’t it much too late for that now? More to the point – as many were quick to remark – the band could hardly reunite since Richard Wright had died in 2008.

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Stravinsky Song of the Day: Pig – Fountain of Miracles

I was going to save this for later, but I can’t hold off any more. The sound quality in this clip isn’t quite enough to really appreciate the song, but it will do to give you an idea. This really is one of the best songs I’ve ever heard.

The use of the Rite of Spring sample is clever and somewhat frustrating as though the melody is familiar it’s almost impossible to work out exactly which part of the track it’s from.

The Fountain of Miracles is just as clever, just as subtle, throughout. There are a lot of layers to the song – layers of percussion as twisted and funky as Head Like A Hole, wonderful little grating sub-bassy bits, orchestral bits, catchy guitars and those unforgettable gospelly vocals. Raymond sounds like a murderous Elvis prophesying to a Southern church of noise. He’s channeling JG Thirlwell via Night of the Hunter.

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Trending Topics: The Longest Tunes In My iTunes Library

Not sure if this topic is actually trending yet, but it should be! (Thanks, ET) It’s not based on all the songs in my collection, just the ones I have to hand. One song from each featured band (so it’s not just a list of Pink Floyd songs):

Sufjan Stevens – Impossible Soul (25:34)
Like Echoes, it’s like an album’s-worth of songs in one.

Pink Floyd – Echoes (16:31)
I still go absolutely weak at the knees watching that!

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Top 10 Posts 2010

These aren’t necessarily the ones with the most hits (since 30 March 2010) – though most are.

1 10 Sexiest Nerds

Blimey, you’re a shallow bunch! I wrote this as a bit of light-hearted fluff and it’s had about as many views as every other post put together! Still, if there’s one thing we love here, it’s sexy nerds. Of course, it was controversial when I first put it up: everyone complained that their favourite game developer had been omitted!

2 Fallout New Vegas: The First Hour

Everyone wants to know about Benny. It’s a good game and I’m still enjoying it, but I haven’t blogged about it lately because it would just read “number of radscorpions killed: 15. v good. Paralysed by choice: still not picked a side.”

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Last Impressions: 3 great albums by PIG

It’s like Trent Reznor and JG Thirlwell had a baby. A sort of KMFDM-shaped baby, because Raymond Watts is the sultry sensation that co-wrote Juke Joint Jezebel.

Let’s just say I spent $100 importing three PIG CDs and it was totally worth it. Filing this under Last Impressions because it was a case of getting them back (let’s never be parted again!).

When Interscope set Reznor up with Nothing Records, Trent signed PIG to his label. Unfortunately most of the actual promotion went on Marilyn Manson, so while most NIN fans had heard of PIG, few of us had really heard the music, which is a shame because it’s brilliant. The early stuff (Praise the Lard) is a love-letter to Foetus wrapped up in sweet funky pop hooks, while mid-90s classics Wrecked and Sinsation are exceptional rock albums that will tickle the earlobes of anyone who loved bands like NIN, Ministry and Die Krupps.

There’s a lot more to PIG than these three, but if you’re remotely curious in Raymond Watts’s oeuvre, here’s where to start.



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