Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Ah Um

Work's been kind of stressful the last few days, so I've been too preoccupied to come up with anything substantial to post about. I will try harder tomorrow, but I've not seen any new anime in a few days and haven't been playing games much since I finished XCOM (and restarted it on a real difficulty, i.e., Normal - I'm not confident enough yet to try it on a level more punishing than that just yet), apart from Wind Waker which is just ticking through.

So this'll be a bit of a ramble.

I haven't even been keeping on top of blogs recently, so apart from the imminent (probably kind of deserved) demise of another of the UK's high street mainstays, HMV, I've no idea what's happening in the world. Unless you count The Onion's tremendous article about "The 6 Best Dresses At The Golden Globes" - I love it when they get angry.

I have been reading a bit recently; I used an gift voucher from Christmas to pick up the Kindle version of a book I already own, which seems to be more common than buying new books for the device. I've got almost all of David Mitchell's novels on there now - the only one left is Black Swan Green, which I have in hardback but I'm not sure if I'd read it again. Might try the dead tree version again, see if that inspires anything before splashing out for the digital version.

The one I just (re)bought is number9dream, also coincidentally the first of his books that I read. I'd forgotten so many of the subplots and scenes, and it's in turns a tremendously sad and joyously happy book. I'm trying to keep an eye out for tie-ins to his other books (apart from The Thousand Autumns of Jacob de Zoet, they all take place in the same "universe"); I only remember one, and haven't spotted any others this time yet.

I've also just got Charles Mingus' first Columbia album, Mingus Ah Um (I always forget if Ah comes before or after Um in that title; I had to look it up again to check) and have had that on loop at work. It's pretty good, but it's a more disorganised than I was expecting. Some of the solos really clash with the rhythm/backing sections they play over, but there's some great energy in it. And Mingus was a bass player, so his contributions to the collective aren't always as obvious as Miles Davis' were on his albums. It's probably not an album to start your jazz collection with, but if you're already a fan of bebop you'll probably get a kick out of it.

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