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Entertainment

Patrick Hannan — A Useful Fiction

Have you noticed that there is a lot of introspection about devolution just now? I suppose it underlines the fact that devolution is a process rather than a settlement that everyone is still looking at how to tweak it. Maybe it is just the newness of it. The Scottish Parliament is very young as these […]

Andrew Bird — Noble Beast

This is a purchase that I made experimentally. A few months ago I was accumulating a hefty order on Boomkat, and I was within touching distance of getting the free postage for spending £50 or more. But I couldn’t work out what to buy. So I put it to Twitter, and Twitter made the decision […]

Summertime woes

Sweet summer night and I’m stripped to my sheets Forehead is leaking, my AC squeaks and A voice from the clock says, “You’re not gonna get tired” My bed is a pool and the walls are on fire So begins the new single by Animal Collective, ‘Summertime Clothes’. Their solution to being unable to sleep […]

Five disturbing things about democracy

Here it is: that post I’ve been sitting on for upwards of a year. Before I start, I am going to make a few introductory notes about what I do and don’t mean when I call democracy disturbing. I find that all too often debates about this subject are clouded by dogma, which leads to […]

Buddha Machine II

A few years ago I wrote about the Buddha Machine, a charming little plastic box that emits ethereal music. It is an interesting object, mostly because the nine loops that it can play are so other-worldly and, despite their brevity, infinitely fascinating. Which is just as well, because they will repeat endlessly. Well, until you […]

The wonderful web presence of Woolworths

Regular readers will know that until January this year I worked for Woolworths — I wrote about my experiences. Since then I have taken an interest in the future direction of the brand, which was sold last month to Shop Direct. The new, online-only version of Woolworths is not set to launch until this summer. […]

The Edinburgh Twestival

I had a great time yesterday at the Edinburgh Twestival, an opportunity to meet other local users of Twitter while at the same time raising money for charity: water. A comment I heard a lot from other people was that the event wasn’t quite what they expected. It certainly wasn’t a total geekfest as some […]

Music of 2008: Top ten

10. Stereolab — Chemical Chords This is more or less what you would expect from Stereolab. Fantastically jaunty and slightly idiosyncratic pop songs. This is hardly Stereolab’s best album (and I say that as someone who has only heard three of them), but it is a joy nonetheless. 9. David Byrne and Brian Eno — […]

Music of 2008: #25–#11

At the end of every year I write a post ranking my favourite music releases of the year. But for 2008 I was very busy, and I had other things I wanted to write about more. Now that it’s February, I think I’d really better get on with it. I know not many people will […]

The Designers Republic

The other day I learnt from my brother that the graphic design company The Designers Republic went out of business earlier this month. My interest in graphic design is not particularly heavy. But the interest I do have in it has all stemmed from my exposure to the work of The Designers Republic. Their work […]