Music storage

May 29, 2010

ITEM:   I’ve just had to delete 50 albums from my 8Gb music player to make room for 50 different ones but I still return to the same songs over again. With my mp3 player in “shuffle” mode it never fails to cheer me up when this fab tune comes around. I wish I had a less scratchy version….although that just adds to its other-wordly charm I guess. “All the time in the world” by The Modds is a hidden gem.


ITEM:   I’m debating with myself whether I should buy a Brennan JB7.I’m sure you’ve seen it. He’s really pushing the adverts at the moment. That full page in The Times couldn’t have been cheap. I like the idea of having all my music in one accessible place but I don’t like the thought of the time it would take to put all  my CDs etc onto the 160Gb/500Gb (??) hard disc. Would I ever listen to much of it anyway?  We’ve got out of the habit of listening to music in the lounge these days. I tend to listen more in the car and enjoy Angel Baby (a Podcast) in the privacy of the bathroom. I’ll try and resist the allure of a Brennan JB7 until I’ve done some more research.. 

ITEM:   The prolific author Michael Moorcock used to write Science Fiction paperbacks faster than I could read them. His stories of alternate versions of England were great but I soon tired of the fantasy stuff like Elric and The Eternal Champion. In 1975 Michael released an LP entitled “The New World’s Fair” as Michael Moorcock and Deep Fix. Of course I had to buy it. I was going to talk about the couple of tracks on it that I’ve always liked  and the reason why “concept” albums very rarely work but was surprised to find loads of info about it on the Interweb already and that it’s been available on CD for ages. And the CD version contains a couple of demos/extra tracks I haven’t got.  I’m trying to resist buying that also.

They say a picture is worth a thousand words….so thats just saved me explaining any of the above.

Sinister Tales

May 26, 2010

Now, where have I seen this cover before ??  Although I bought this when it was first published I can’t remember when that would have been…. its not like I kept a list…mid to late 1970s ?? Who knows…Alan Class never dated his comics. Sinister Tales, along with the other 5 main Class Series comics such as Uncanny, Astounding etc began circa 1962-1964 ?? I don’t even know if he kept to a strict monthly schedule. I don’t know much do I ?? I do know that the best interview with Alan is by Terry Hooper here. And I do know that the same cover appeared many years earlier on this comic.

And, of course, it originally appeared on this comic.


May 19, 2010

Some albums improve with the passing of the years. Here is another old LP  that, attracted by the cover, I’ve recently dragged out and am enjoying once more.

“Ptooff” was the first album by The Deviants and recorded and released on a small independent record label in 1967 . The LP was re-issued on Decca in 1969. It was in the bargain bins by 1970 which is where I first came across it !! The Deviants were catagorised as anti-establishment “hippies” though they were more like prototype punks moving in similar circles to those wacky Pink Fairies and Hawkwind people. Mick Farren was involved in the Deviants and would go on to be involved in other media such as underground comix, pop newspapers and novels and stuff.

I’ve put together a few seconds of each of the 8 tracks on the LP here. It may encourage someone to get the CD.

My favourite cartoon

May 17, 2010

Battle Cry

May 16, 2010

Here is another mouldy old UK comic from the late 1950s. I have a price guide which dates this as being published in 1953 which is obviously wrong/a misprint. It must be 1957 or later although I can’t date it precisely. It doesn’t even have a number let alone a date !! 68 page squarebound comics containing black and white reprints from American 36 page colour comics were a popular format here for many years. Miller, Thorpe and Porter/Strato and Alan Class are the most well-known but there were other, smaller companies that dabbled with the format. Such as Streamline Comics. This particular comic was one of two unnumbered issues bearing the title “Battle Cry” published (circa 1958 ??). Streamline issued other similar unnumbered war and western comics around that time.

“Battle Cry” reprints relelatively obscure (yet quite well written and drawn) material from the Key Publications/Stanmor (1951-1955) USA title of the same name (No 20 from September 1955…which was the final issue). The rest of the comic contains a strange assortment. There is a Black Rider western from Marvel, a Robin Hood and his Merry Men from a 1957 Charlton comic and a strange 5 page SF story entitled “Brain Power” (here as a pdf file ) which I believe may well have originated in a Harvey (3D) comic in the mid 1950s.

Confusingly the back cover of this UK “Battle Cry” comic is an exact copy of the front cover of No 8 of one of Key/Stanmor’s companion war comics entitled “Battle Attack”.

Astonishing Stories

May 12, 2010

According to various sources around the Interweb Alan Class published 1448 individual comics up until his company’s demise in 1989. His main 6 titles of Astounding Stories, Creepy Worlds, Secrets of the Unknown, Sinister Tales, Suspense Stories and Uncanny Tales ran for many years and accounted for 1348 of them. The remaining 100 issues (or 96 plus the 4 Ally Sloper magazines) consisted of an assortment of 18 short-lived titles such as Journey into Danger and Weird Planets. Eight titles appeared for one issue only such as Uncensored Love, Tales of the Supernatural and this lone unnumbered issue of Astonishing Stories from the mid 1960s.

The reason for this comic being issued only Alan knows. The majority of his books had similar content (mostly a mish-mash of ACG/Atlas/Charlton Fantasy/SF with some random super heroics from Magicman, Nemesis, The Phantom, early Marvel etc black and white reprints) and the titles of the comics were pretty irrelevent. When I bought this comic (in 1965 or 1966 ??) I thought I was buying the latest issue of Astounding Stories anyway !!!