When the sun hits


Perast – Kotor bay- Montenegro

Put it all behind you/Put it in a song, yeah/ I don’t want to know about it/ Put it in a corner/ Somewhere I can’t find it /I don’t want to think about.

Put it on a fire/ Put it in a pocket /I don’t want to see you now /Put it in a picture/ (Bury all the magic)/ Hide it in a story/ (Bury all the treasure)/ I don’t wanna know about.

I don’t remember much about it all /Just saw you loving someone else / And swallowing that bitter pill / My shabby heart was acting out / You know I don’t want no one else.

Threw it all upon a fire/ Took the fight to someone else.



For You Always

I met you in London, I met you in
Leeds, I met you in New York
We once met in Los Angeles just
Around the time of the Columbine murders and Mojave 3 were
Playing on Sunset Boulevard at Tower Records
There was always something about you but you had a man in your life
I felt a connection with you that
Felt so comfortable and right
There’s an unconditional love that rises above of all
If you needed me in any way I’d always be there for you always

Don’t know when we met but
There was always something about you
But I always had a boyfriend and
You always had a girlfriend or two
You were maybe twenty seven
And I was only twenty three
I had a thing for you and I know
You had a thing for me
And though sometimes a year would go by
The guys from Gomez would
Always tell me that you said hi
Don’t know why I got jealous
Or why I felt alarmed when Ian
Said you showed up to their gig
With a different redhead under your arm

I remember a day at the Columbia
Hotel we had lunch at Halepi
Across from Hyde Park
We came back to my room, my
Clothes were drying out on the balcony
We were sitting there talking and
The guys came in to talk to me
They saw my socks and
Underwear hanging out there and they laughed
But you didn’t cause you had my back

I remember seeing you at Conway Hall in 2008
And I remember thinking that you were looking great
And I was alone but you were with that guy who worked at the guitar shop
So into a black taxi with Phil and Ian Ball I hopped
And outside it was cold as Charles Dickens
And the next morning I was at Heathrow Airport leaving for Athens
And I ate stuffed peppers, played my show, and slept with some ho
And I thought of you in England, drinking tea with your guy and looking out at the snow

When I saw you recently and joined you onstage
It was as if neither one of us had aged
Still had my voice you still had your sense of humor
You were still the Crazy Koz from the CMJ that winter
I believe it was December 1995
So many years have passed and
I’ve got a child now and a new guy
You’ve got a girl and both of us are happy
I want to know you when we’re old
And grey in rockin’ chairs and cranky
I’m so happy to have you in my life
You know I’ll always carry a soft spot for you in my heart
Got a connection that’s so wonderful and rare
Okay Mark, I gotta go I hope to see you in Venice this year


Woozy With Cider

I Watch the park quieten from the hotel window, I hear you softly sleep amongst the cars and saluting songbirds,
For a city whose size had scared me for years right now it’s a feeble evening row, not un-similar to a beach evening ending
On the table to my left there’s a magazine with a picture of dead monkey, making a mockery of what I’d call art
But what would I know about the scene in the city that has swallowed up friends lovers and family,
Just give me a village the size of a teacup
You’re happier here spread out with your eyes closed,
I feel I should order a drink in celebration to welcome the summer, whose first day is ending
Should you wake you’d catch me of course and ask me the wisdom of drinking once more
I cast me mind back to yesterdays wedding where we got drunk and fell over
I did my best to be polite to a family I’d never met, but on numerous occasions, I guess, I could have tried harder
Of course by the end of the night I was a best friend with everyone and every ones wife but right now I couldn’t remember their names no matter how hard I try

As the sun glares through the hotel window I wonder of our future and where it will lead to,
I wonder if you’ll be laying there 10 years 20 years 30 years down the line
I’ll still be staring out at the street confused about love and life,
It’ll be interesting to see if anyone every bought those songs of mine if anyone heard those words that I never got quite right,
I think I can be honest in presuming the world is not exactly going to be leaping out its bed to make me rich using my songs in adverts selling oranges or lemons,
Who knows I may end up owning the whole street, or more likely sleeping under tree in the park opposite
Would the runners keep me awake or would I keep them asleep
I’d hope I have the sense to move back home, as lovely as today is, I‘d imagine the winter would be rather cold

I’d been told for years that the devil had the best tunes and that the devil lived down here whereas us country folk weren’t worth the salt from the road
Ex pat magazine editors who choose to loose their temper on the easily persuaded northern town dwellers
And sure enough 99 percent of the people I meet have scant regard for entertaining me, it seems I’m too old too slow too quiet and just wrong
And I’m glad. In their cocaine fuelled electronic cabarets I’ll be the man at the bar drinking overpriced whiskey from a bar maid who’s to good to catch my eye
She only works here two nights a week, the rest of the time she’s a singer in a rock and roll band
I bet she’d change her tune if I told her my album had peaked at number 172 and that I also had friends who worked in bars and that didn’t define who they are
Though it certainly helps their capacity to drink.

But I’ve strayed off the subject
Now I’ll be leaning over and waking you up, and you’ll squint at me through the cracks between your eyelids, woozy with cider
As if you’re asking exactly where we are and exactly what I wanted.
And I’ll be happy because we won’t be taking anything too seriously.

I’ll still be staring out at the street confused about love and life

Think of this…

Think of this: when they present you with a watch, they are gifting you with a tiny flowering hell, a wreath of roses, a dungeon of air. They aren’t simply wishing the watch on you, and many more, and we hope it will last you, it’s a good grand, Swiss, seventeen rubies; they aren’t just giving you this minute stonecutter which will bind you by the wrist and walk along with you. They are giving you – they don’t know it, it’s terrible that they don’t know it – they are gifting you with a new fragile and precarious piece of yourself, something that’s yours but not a part of your body, that you have to strap to your body like your belt, like a tiny, furious bit of something hanging onto your wrist. They gift you with the job of having to wind it every day, an obligation to wind it, so that it goes on being a watch, they gift you with the obsession of looking into jewelry-shop windows to check the exact time, check the radio announcer, check the telephone service. They give you the gift of fear, someone will steal it from you, it’ll fall on the street and get broken. They give you the gift of your trademark and the assurance that it’s a trademark better than others, they gift you with the impulse to compare your watch with other watches. They aren’t giving you a watch, you are the gift, they are giving you yourself for the watch’s birthday.


As time goes by

The Laughing Heart by Charles Bukowski

your life is your life
don’t let it be clubbed into dank submission.
be on the watch.
there are ways out.
there is a light somewhere.
it may not be much light but
it beats the darkness.
be on the watch.
the gods will offer you chances.
know them.
take them.
you can’t beat death but
you can beat death in life, sometimes.
and the more often you learn to do it,
the more light there will be.
your life is your life.
know it while you have it.
you are marvelous
the gods wait to delight
in you.


Atoms for peace

Appears on my cv hidden between useless courses of quality management, an operator license for radioactive facilities granted by the Nuclear Safety Council. What would lead to start a superhero´s comic book with superpowers acquired after accidental exposure to californium-252, avoiding the lycra suit of course, unfortunately it is just a license to operate an instrument that measures soil moisture and density . Yes but through a very innovative way and also dangerous, it´s true. Innovation and construction seems an oxymoron, but sometimes you come across something interesting in that world where concrete, the ugliest substance, thick and dirty is the king. I say this from the point of view of a chemist, used to pure substances, crystals, transparent and noble stuff (ignoring some sulfur derivative).

This device, google “Troxler” to see how it looks, is primarily used to control the execution of roads, highways, etc… on site, quickly and without a destructive test. It must control the degree of compaction of the successive layers which form the platform to prevent water from infiltrating and modify the behavior of soils, producing holes, tapers or cracks in the road. Prior it must be done a  geotechnical study of the soils including “Proctor” test, that will give us the maximum density reference for  this material and what moisture is the best to achieve that density.

After this boring introduction comes the interesting, as is done with the help of the dreaded radioactivity and its properties, not magic, but physical.

Gamma radiation

To determine the density we use a radioactive source of Cesium-137 of 0.3 GBequerels which emits photons with a very short wavelength, wich means dangerous because it is ionizing radiation. Gamma rays are more powerful than Röntgen rays, misnamed by almost everybody X-ray. The source has to be embedded in the layer of material making a hole in it and introducing the probe. Since the probe / source emits a known number of gamma photons that collide with the electrons of the material before reaching the two detectors of the instrument. One is the well-known Geiger detector, and the other one a Müller detector. The difference between the emitted and detected photons gives us the ratio of electrons in the material to be studied at a known distance, then its density.

To measure the moisture content of the soil we use neutrons of a radioactive source of Americium-241: Beryllium of 1.48 GBequerels. The neutrons emitted by this source penetrate the material colliding with atoms of hydrogen (from the water) so they are thermalized, braked. The thermalization is a process in which the neutrons are slowed to the point that in successive shocks with Hydrogen or other materials do not lose speed. The gauche has a neutron detector of Helium-3 specifically sensitive to thermalized neutrons. The counts obtained by this detector are thus directly proportional to the amount of Hydrogen / water in the material.

Atoms for peace

In my mind I have built a fairly clear picture of many abstract scientific concepts, radiation, wave-particle, electronic cloud, molecular vibration, etc… And as always I’m associating everything with music around me, in this kind of language comes to my synaptic space the electronic music. Besides music is also vibration, as the strings of a guitar and an electronic device that converts a digital signal, but in the case of electronics is more akin to those mental images.

Some music bands from more organic sounds that have managed with alchemical wise the mixing of guitars with artificial elements can be Primal Scream circa “Vanishing Point” and “XTRMNTR” example of a poisoned with radioactivity guitars production, Mogwai in “You do not jesus know” or “Superheroes of BMX” also use guitars that seem too throw incandescent flares,  solar eruptions of nanoparsecs, all filtered by the hand of David Fridmann. Making a connection bridge between organic and artificial Fuck Buttons fit well. In “Tarot Sport” they insuflate his music with scintillation photons. In the world of pure electronic abound many cases, avoiding techno standards, hick progressive and silly chill out  filling the outskirts of Ibiza and Barcelona, ​​I note only a notch, James Holden’s remix of ” The sky was pink “originally released by Nathan Fake. The remix is ​​infinitely better, not to say that a song is completely different and much broader view. Mr. Holden also had the fine idea to call his first album “The idiots are wining” in reference to the aforementioned.


One of my favorite bands, and less known, is Gravenhurst, even when is perhaps one of the more “usual” . It began as the name under which operated alone Nick Talbot, a young man from Bristol who plays acoustic guitar with the fingerpicking technique, without pick and using several fingers at once, setting the rhythm as a bass with the thumb and drawing melodies with the other fingers, is very common among troubadour songwriters. What may define his own niche within the huge field in which I dropped is, musically, a dark misty atmosphere, achieved through the use of musical landscapes where you can glimpse the influence of his countrymen Flying Saucer Attack. His voice is fragile, almost childlike female and lyrically, his texts are exquisite, dark and obsessive, existential. Serial murderers abound in first person, so you can identify with them, as in “the perfume” of Süskind, as a collector of flowers. Ghosts are also recurrent, as revised past relationships with resentment, perhaps comes to be the same thing.

And it is this bitter mix of violence and tenderness, of darkness and sweetness that I particularly love.


While his discography begins with “Internal travels” self-released on his own label Silent age, is not a record I feel full with, you see the basement of the musical building he is doing but his style is not refined yet, oddly is chronologically the last album I heard, as it is not edited in Spain and I could only get by downloading it from the net.

“Flashlight seasons” is the record I fell in love immediately. Initially published in 2003 in an unknown label “Sink and stove” was reissued under the electronic roof of  Warp. A label specialized in experimental electronic interested  in a folkie singer is a  good example of his unique sound. The album follows the coordinates I drew before, foggy folk with choruses carved in intricate guitars, haunting sonority, all songs are profoundly beautiful. This model remained  for his next album “Black holes in the sand”  an eight-song mini lp, among which the song that titles the album and a raw version of Diane from Husker Du that I recommended here and fits perfectly into the profile of serial murderer and sweety psychopath.

With these guarantees, by spring time I appeared in the Forum in Barcelona to attend, for the first time, at Primavera Sound festival in 2005, and the name of Gravenhurst marked in green marker, but when I arrived at the right time, which was exposed on stage did not correspond to my expectations, it was a trio of rock, so I doubted if the program had changed, nevertheless, I liked what I saw and a lot! it was angry, powerful and loud, with distorted and unsettling guitars. Later I read that one of his favorite songs was “Good Morning Captain” by Slint and along with listening to their next album all came together.

By then became part of the group’s lineup drummer Dave Collingwood influencing the way to tackle the songs, opening up a range of new sounds. In the next two albums “Fires in distant buildings” (Warp 2005) and “The Western Lands” (Warp 2007) are themes clearly inspired by Slint, with quiet parts and lashes of extreme rock , motorik krautrock from Can and Neu!, shoegazing near My Bloody Valentine and lysergic psychedelic songs lengthening ad infinutum. All accompanied by the sound  and lyrics of the solo Talbot. A regular feature on his albums is the existence of instrumental songs and some version,  Diane from Hüsker Dü, See my friends of the Kinks, Fairport Convention´s Farewell Farewell, and B-sides of singles like Song to the Siren by Tim Buckley, all very different from the originals.

in the nature of light

At this point the communion between noise and sweetness becomes the forefront of the band, music is more vigorous and the contrast is higher and more physical. This lead to treat Gravenhurst as that group that few know and want to remain so, a heritage for chosen people, not in the hipsters conversations in queues to concerts. This way the lucky ones will enjoy without interference our small aliquot of beauty.

After five years of hiatus, in 2012 Gravenhurst edited “The ghost in daylight” (Warp), in that  impasse Colingwood left the group and the result is an album that goes back to the first, simple and without ornamentation, retro-futuristic themed and inspired by images of Escher, Fritz Lang or Menzies. Again the basis of the compositions are the arpeggios of Talbot and a background reminiscent of landscapes in the misty autumnal countryside.

Gravenhurst has toured throughout Europe to promote their new albums but never stopped in Spain since that primaverasound performance in 2005. Luck smiled to me when stochastically, Mr. Talbot and I crossed our ways on a trip to Vienna, so buying tickets was immediate. It was during the 2012 Waves festival and in one of their best locations, the Odeon. A scenario with an exquisite wooden amphitheater and a twelve-foot Doric columns extolling the frame. The group performed in duo format excusing the drummer for an unexpected trip to England,. This marked the repertoire, digging the bare and fragile songs, with the known formula, arpeggios and atmospheres. To highlight the respectful silence of the Viennese public, something never seen in Spain, which can be mistaken for coldness but I think it’s respect. The concert was short but I was able to enjoy one of those epiphanies with the closing song  “Black holes in the sand” full of extended flares of white noise, delay and distortion. Sweetness and destruction. Love and revenge.



Nick Talbot also has its own blog:

Kız Çocuğu (The Little Girl) by Nâzım Hikmet Ran

The Little Girl
– Nazim Hikmet

It is me knocking at your door
– at how many doors i’ve been
But no one can see me
Since the dead are invisible.

I died at Hiroshima
that was ten years ago
I am a girl of seven
Dead children do not grow.

First my hair caught fire
then my eyes burnt out
I became a handful of ashes
blown away by the wind.

I don’t wish anything for myself
for a child who is burnt to cinders
cannot even eat sweets.

I’m knocking at your doors
aunts and uncles, to get your signatures
so that never again children will burn
and so they can eat sweets.

This Mortal Coil on their 1991 album Blood with vocals of Louise Rutkowski, Deirdre Rutkowski with Tim Freeman.

I come and stand at every door
But no one hears my silent dread
I knock and yet remain unseen
For I am dead, for I am dead
I’m only seven although I’ve died
In hiroshima long ago
I’m seven now as I was then
When children die they do not grow
My hair was scorched by swirling flame
My eyes grew dim, my eyes grew blind
Death came and turned my bones to dust

And that was scattered by the wind
I need no fruit, I need no rice
I need no sweet, nor even bread
I ask for nothing for myself
For I am dead, for I am dead All that I ask is that for peace
You fight today, you fight today
So that the children of this world
May live and grow, and laugh and play.


A year of concerts

Once the year passed away I try to memorize and transcribe it in terms of live music. In order to introduce the shows I’ve attended and enjoyed, with the aim of discovering new music. I always recommend the experience of live music so you can feel vibrations of the graves in your chest; and is always a real proof of the skills of a band, also the experience of being part of a crowd  enjoying is more real and vivid.

The year started arctic and minimalist with Olafur Arnalds. The Apolo was prepared for the purpose with chairs in the dance floor. The trio was formed by the friendly Icelandic at the piano, an awesome violinist and a sober cello. Olafur won over the audience by asking us to sing three notes as a choir. He recorded and reproduced the loop for the first song, using a laptop that also served to launch the electronic bases or raindrops that adorns some of his songs. The concert became more intense with the dedication to his grandmother, who died recently, of her preferred song.

I don’t usually talk about these issues but in a concert of this delicate kind the silence is as important as the music, and that was interrupted because the doors of women bathroom, on the side of the stage, were squeaking all the time,… some lube for these doors please!!.Another uncomfortable noise is the camera shutter of the amateur photographers who go to these concerts to learn. A pro would take pictures on the first song and leave, the lighting was static and the position of musicians was fixed.

The only chance to see A winged victory for the sullen in Spain was in the Eco festival in Madrid at the “Matadero”. So there I went with a couple of Galicians geeks to enjoy the best album of last year 2011, a joint project of Dustin O’Halloran with his piano and Adam Wiltzie, of Stars of the lid, with his guitar accompanied by a string trio. This type of minimalist music, ambient and drone needs of venues with surrounding sound, the audience should be seated and be very respectful, that was the request of Wiltzie but two morons hipsters on the front row burst the concert soon. Furthermore, it was the last concert and the waiters began to clean and fill the fridges with bottle noise. For the lace, again a photographer tried to bring his ego to the enjoyment of the other being annoying and inconvenient. The musicians took notice and didn’t communed with the event playing just over forty minutes with face of frustration. But the travel worth it because of the magnificent brain feeding music exposed that night.

In addition to A winged concert …I met new proposals like the music for a modern impressionistic ballet accompanied by dark atmospheric projections composed by Kreng.

The third notch to highlight is the opportunity to see Low in a good venue, so far as I had seen in the Auditori of the Forum in the Radiohead dream’s day and the ATP primaverasound stage. So the opportunity was provided in March before performing a move of 3,000 km. Probably Alan Sparkhawk has stress off with Retribution Gospel Choir, before he tended to histrionism with facial tics accompanied by their slowcore, now he looks more relaxed but always great at guitar. The set was focused on the last album more melodic, commercial and accessible than their older great, slow, and minimalism tunes. Watching these Mormon gives me more peace of mind than a million priests.

Let’s jump to the unmissable Primavera Sound 2012 in Barcelona, where I would highlight the concerts of Basque steamroller Lisabö, emotion to the surface with Codeine, a tribute to the luminous pop of Big Star’s third, the new cheerful professionalism of Sr Chinarro, mechanical minimalism from The Field, the sonic coffee liqueur of Unicornibot, the Shellac’s mandatory ceremony, the aggressive solo show of Michael Gira, the return of paused Jeff Mangum, Mudhoney’s grunge hangover, the cathartic revengeful snakes of Sharon van Etten, the slowed spiders of Wilco, electronic melodies from I Break Horses, the compulsive guitar playing of Veronica Falls and Girls Names, the confirmation as big band of Beach House, Kings of convenience and songs to cheat with wool sweater and the grand finale with the Black Lips pogo Sunday at the Apollo adding the party’s promotion to the first football league of Celta de Vigo.

A trip to Vienna and good luck provided the opportunity to see Gravenhurst at the Waves festival, the venue (Odeon) was great with doric columns and a few grades to sit on, the audience was respectful and quiet. Nick Talbot is back to his beginnings, the misty folk and acoustic guitar arpeggios. He came with a bassist who brought density with a synthesizer; unfortunately the lack of drummer influenced the set list. He took a beauty Epiphone Sheraton to close the concert with “Black Hole in the Sun” on a stretched version with distortion and white noise. Great concert!!

Luck was again on my side because we got tickets to see the Nutcracker by Tchaikovsky at the Vienna Opera, a very beautiful and expressive show, musically and visually.

The last festival of the year was again the winter primavera sound franchise in Barcelona, the primavera club 2012. Beginning with the main course, Swans on Thursday gave a gorgeous two-hour concert where they unfurled a brutal music volume, rough, dry, strong, but not as a spiritual mantra but is earthly, human and visceral. Priapism.


Friday Little wings opened the day with endless songs and his characteristic voice, The Monochrome Set sounded leaden and boring complete opposite to Redd Kross, these displayed their energetic power pop to make the public jump and shout. Many people came to Sant Jordi Club to see the game of Spanish band Los planetas playing with the alignment of the planets and the Maya’s end of the world prophecy. I started with Sr Chinarro who signed a concert not as good as in the Forum, the band changes a lot of components and, in this version, the guitarist didn´t play riffs with fluency. Triangulo de amor bizarro proved to have dominated the distortion that makes the best Spanish band live, deployed their new songs and dedicated the concert with Galician humour to Ana Botella (mayor of Madrid) . Los Planetas culminated the alignment doomsday concert with two and a half hours, three encores. Played Toxicosmos or La Guerra de las galaxias, De viaje, Segundo premio, David & Claudia and Santos que yo te pinte crimped with their new flamenco-rock sound and accompanied by some very accomplished visuals that improved the experience.

On Saturday Toy demonstrated in their show how they have impreganted the motorik influences on his first album; the singer ended trying to sodomize his amp on the floor. Deerhof in their line, are much more fun live than on record, Satomi and her aerobic manga, Saunier, who looks like a left defender of the Danish 88 national handball team, probably one of the best drummers in the world and the two accompanying guitars this time were less active for habitual level of hyperactivity.

Last december 12 I went to the last concert of the year, for such a great occasion and I went to see Michael Nyman. He presented his solo piano show based on his own works for opera and cinema. It was on the culture palace of Pontevedra. In two separate parts, initially presented a medley of compositions closing with the popular song from “the piano” movie. The second part presented video projections on which the British minimalist developed classical compositions as he wrote for filmers like Peter Greenaway. Nyman’s music develops all its glory with string and crisscross style variations like the Reich phases, but this time the piano was the protagonist.

A year therefore of great live music, once in a lifetime.


Grace Cathedral Park

Red House Painters was the group of Mark Kozelek during the 90´s. I met them late, once the millennium passed away thanks to Rafa, a roommate in Santiago. I found the compilation Retrospective (4AD 1999) in between a pile of CD´s he left me to listen to. I remember playing  it after eating, lying in my bed and the first chords of Grace Cathedral Park did the rest, the waltz rhythm of the bass, like the wave motion of a lullaby and the deep voice of Kozelek, romantic, and afflicted…

Punch drunk love, love at first listen.

It seems that there is a sad story behind, like the sepia colour of the album cover, the past has turned the colour into forgotten yellow, the figure of someone who was once important but could not be definitive – If there may exist the definitive.

grace cathedral park

The park in front of the facade of the Grace Cathedral is located in San Francisco and from it you can almost guess the bustling pier 39, the busy stands of crab and, if you go at night you will be surprised to hear the roaring sea lions? on the pontoons. In public parks abound Asian elderly practicing tai chi, quiet, like dancing in downtempo.

Perpendicular to the main facade of the cathedral is a building with a clearly symbol of Frenchmasonry (ruler, compass and a big G in it) recorded in frosted glass. Inside the cathedral there is a maze, an intricate labyrinth carved into the floor, tradition says that if you arrive into the center you will reach a meditative state, a hypnagogic trance, as it is… by listening to this song…

PS: In 2010 I was fortunate to hear Mark Kozelek live with only acoustic guitar at Heliogàbal in Barcelona, did not play this song, but he played Katy song one of the most beautiful songs ever written, It was a day to remember.