Latest reading


Just finished a couple of non-fiction books which isn’t my usual poison.  I’m more a fiction man.  Both have had their merits.

The first is this.

nudge

A book about choice architecture and how to help people make  reasoned decisions by influencing them at a high level (government, management etc) without prejudice.  It focuses on a political leaning called libertarian paternalism.  I felt very grown up reading, and finishing,  it.  But truth be told although I gained a few intellectual insights I can’t really recommend it.  I understand it is taking the political world by storm.

I repeat, I can’t recommend it.

The second features Britain’s best loved attention deficit disorder sufferer.  Poor old Russel Brand.  Oh how we can’t work him out.

yes.  I know...

yes. I know...

This autobiography is actually a most enjoyable and interesting insight into a form of fame driven madness.

Do I like him any more having read it?  No.

Do I pity him?  No.

Have I gained any respect for him.  Actually, yes.

Isobel Campbell and Mark Lanegan live


Saw them live at a new venue in Edinburgh, The Picture House, which has excellent acoustics and is very like the ABC in Glasgow. Trouble is the band’s sound guy wasn’t up to the task. Frequently the bass was overpowering to the point that you couldn’t hear Isobel sing. Her presence in the mix was often poor.

The ‘show’ was a non starter. Mark Lanegan uttered a total of three words – “Thanks very much” as he prepared to exit stage pre-encore.

The finale only merited a slight wave.

Campbell wasn’t much better and what she did say was trite crap frankly.

The lighting was shit. Dark (like the mood) and not a single fade all night.

This was the best I could capture on the old G9 and the pose says it all.

isabel

The chemistry between Campbell and Lanegan, so electric on vinyl, was non-existant. “Do you think they’ve fallen out?” questioned Ian after the first song.

But, despite all that they were rather good. Their band was excellent and a few new numbers (to me at least) were aired. Don’t know the names of them becuase they never introduced a single sodding song all night. And we got good value as they played for well over an hour.

Their best song on the last album is this one, which the band relished as it allowed them to get a bit rock’n’roll.

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So, a mixed bag. Frankly I thought they treated the audience with disdain and I hate bands that do that. Give me a Richard Hawley any day of the week.

The support were good though. (The Pictish Trail with King Creosote.)