it’s ok I dont need you anyway….

I don’t usually write much about films, except once last year I suggested 7 films for 7 days , but I am pretty excited about the new Richard Linklater film “Everybody wants some” a kind of sequel to one of my favourite films ever made, Dazed and Confused. Pretty much everything Linklater does I enjoy, boyhood and the before sunrise triology – particularly the final one “before midnight”

Something else to be happy about is the new Norah Jones album, out in a few months. She played a concert a few months ago with some new songs, and so if you feel so inclined you can check out a couple of songs below! It’s not the best recording, some kid with a mobile phone I think, but it still sounds pretty interesting.

Finally… I just ordered the twin forks album on cassette. It’s a limited edition 100 copies only thing. I think tapes are the kind of thing I can afford to collect. I tried collecting first edition books but it got far too expensive! Just because it’s Monday, and because I love everything Dashoard Confessional and Twin Forks have done, here’s a video too which feels like a little short film (the sequel is “cross my mind”). Enjoy.




video of the year

Week two of my little round up, and after swooning over the brilliance of Sarah Winchester and her wonderful EP last week, it’s time to let the visuals take over for my video of the year. It was between the Norah Jones “Kentucky” surfing record and this little two part story by Twin Forks. Both are kind if similar visually, but I just can’t get my head round summer surfing sitting here drinking hot chocolate,¬† wrapped up in a scarf and hat. So, here is Twin Forks “Back to you”. I love the whole feel of this video, childhood memories tainted by the sadness of today, before that glimmer of hope at the end (part two is a far happier tale, you can watch that one here)

Next Monday it’s Single of the Year ūüôā

the mark kozelek show featuring war on drugs

It’s crazy warm here in Sussex, pretty much November now but the leaves are still all green and aside from the usual rainy day wipe outs it feels more like July…wait a minute, isn’t that a Dashboard Confessional song?¬† Anyway, autumn’s a good time to reflect on change and I usually write a few poems about hope falling fast, just to cheer myself up…

Which brings me nicely to Mark Kozelek and that whole thing with war on drugs. For those lucky enough not to know anything about it, I won’t bore you with the details here, but Kozelek’s released two “diss tracks” about the war on drugs guy who in turn seems to be super offended and music websites which are silly enough to allow comments are full with people saying how much that hate Mark Kozelek and make some awful remarks about him having “mental health issues” and that they won’t ever listen to him again.

Still I said it before and I’ll say it again, Kozelek can do whatever he likes because he is the most interesting, creative and talented musician of our generation. Nobody can touch him, if I could only listen to one cd it would of course be a red house painters or sun kil moon one (the bands he’s fronted). I even paid a ridiculous amount of money on ebay to get an out of print Spanish edition of his poems/songs. I listen to his msic more than anything else.

But that doesn’t mean he’s not an asshole. Back in 2001 I went with a girl to a red house painters concert. She was shocked and offended by his stage antics and the way he talked about “chicks” and going to bars to “pick up girls”. She said afterwards she would never listen to his sweet lullaby tender love songs anymore. I have no idea if she’s kept that up because shortly afterwards I met my future wife, but it wouldn’t surprise me.

I don’t know why though. Back in my freelance journalism days I wrote a few pieces about literary heroes of mine – Jack Kerouac and William Faulkner. They weren’t the “nicest” people. I’m reading this biography of JD Salinger, he also wasn’t a nice guy but any stretch of the imagination. Then there’s Hemingway, a guy I wouldn’t want to cross he’d tear me apart.¬† Where does it say your heroes have to be nice, friendly, kind, caring, loveable?

So you could say all those examples are men, and you might have a point it can get too much. I never got that macho stuff, it bores me, and as much as I like to pretend I feel “connected” to these writers I couldn’t see myself hanging out with them as such. Not even Kerouac. I’m way too soft.

It’s like that with Mark Kozelek. He’s a complicated person, he can’t fit into some box of what’s “cool” or what’s “socially acceptable”. He’s been an outsider all his life, and just listen to any of his songs to get a glimpse of his genius. Like the best writers and artists though he’s troubled. I do think it’s funny the way he responds, but it’s also kind of nuts too, but it’s the way it has to be.


I’m here on my own amongst the leaves, solitude in the forest for a week. It’s a 3 hour drive to get here, and I spend my time here catching up with old friends playing pool. I meet up with another friend in a pub at 9am. I take the dogs on loooong walks. I muck out the horses stable and give them carrots and apples. I buy the local paper and watch every single world cup match. I read all my diaries and school reports (“Stephen appears to take very little in life seriously” if only that was still true…) and boxes of letters which make me reflect on the passing of time and all the people who’ve disappeared from my life, but that’s all good, life is rich and full of promise as always.

Every morning the dogs downstairs bark at 4am without fail, they don’t stop so around 6:30 I give up and go take them for a long walk to the lake and see the horses too. At night I can’t sleep too many memories and too much excitement about the future with my little family and all the adventures to come…so I write and I write and I write.

So, that’s the setting of today’s blog. Below you’ve got these two videos from Twin Forks and a link to listen to the full release of an extraordinary concert by Mark Kozelek in Italy (there’s a lot of his crazy uber macho on-stage banter too “you’re allowed to sit on stage because you’re a girl, if you were a guy I’d beat the shit out of you!”). It’s out next week. The songs are¬†amazing, you wont hear anything better all year I promise.

Twin Forks. Ok,¬†they aren’t going to be anybody’s coolest hip band. It’s the kid from Dashboard Confessional, so we’re talking emotion here. The videos (at least the first one)¬†might make you cry, but it’s the misty portray of life spiked with sadness, richness, and finally hope and love¬†that got my attention. Two different songs, but one story told in two music videos… You may have to click the “watch on youtube” link if it won’t let you watch below but either way check it out.



Mark Kozelek “Live at Biko” via Pitchfork