Monday, 30 November 2009


So, today I was decorating my man's place and flicked through his extensive record collection in search for a soundtrack to my travail. I came across A Sea With Three Stars by The Nectarine No. 9 and decided to give it a spin seeing as frontman Davy Henderson's latest project The Sexual Objects are playing in Glasgow on Saturday and we are planning to go. I was given a CD of The Nectarine No. 9 years ago but hadn't previously heard this, their debut.

Previously of the Edinburgh punk band The Fire Engines, Henderson formed Nectarine No 9 in Glasgow with future Sexual Objects guitarist Simon Smeeton, as well as Ian Holford and John Thompson. They claimed influences such as Captain Beefheart, T-Rex and Richard Hell, and the group's 5-album strong output sounds as though it could indeed be the product of a Beefheart, Bolan and Hell three-way.
In parts it is brash, experimental and noisy - and often segues seamlessly into unashamed, luxuriant pop with an ever-present glam sheen.

My favourite tracks from the album are She's a Nicer Word to Sing, 22 Blue, A Sea With Three Stars and The No. You Mean.
These songs and more by The Nectarine No. 9 are available to buy on iTunes.

The Sexual Objects support Vic Godard & The Subway Sect at Stereo, Glasgow on Saturday 5th December.

You can stream Sexual Objects tracks HERE

Friday, 27 November 2009

I interview Oskar Oprey for a forthcoming exhibition catalogue.

27th of November. It has already been a shit morning. On the way to the office, the inclement breeze had tampered irreparably with my bi-weekly blow dry and I’d lost a shoelace to a quick-fingered slum child. My chronic suspicion that Jesus despises me was only compounded when, arriving into work, my editor informed me that my first task of the day was to interview the notoriously elusive artist, Oskar Oprey. A mission I feared would be harder than the copy boy yesterday when he caught a whiff of my new pheromone-laden mating scent that I had ordered from an internet site.
Curiously, the editor handed me a phone number scribbled on a crumpled receipt from Wimpey Burger. Hands shaking, I dialled…

Voice: “Hello?”

Me: “Hello, is that Mr Oprey?”

Voice: “It is an aspect of him, a fragment”

Me: "Good enough for me. So, Oskar Oprey, I'd like to start by thanking you for allowing us the rare opportunity to speak with you. Why is it that you are so reluctant to parley with the worlds' press?”

Voice: “I had a bad experience with the press the last time I was in it, for a short film I made. I was a delightful cunt to the photographer and the photo that got printed was bad. Served me right.”

Me: “I see. Shall we skip this painful episode in your career and fast forward to your recent exhibition?”

Voice: “Yep, so we're skipping forward 5 years, which went in quick.”

Me: “Your pieces in Raw Meat seemed to go down well with the art viewing public despite their abject nature. One guest at the opening even requested that you bestow upon him one of the octopus cadavers”

Voice: “Yeah, and he didn't want to eat it. He wanted to use it for his own work.”

Me: “I hope you made it clear that art is only fit for consumption -FEED THE WORLD as Bob Geldof says.”

Voice: “My work is more or less free to those who can afford it, very expensive to those who can't. That person couldn't.”

Me: “For those unfortunates who missed their chance to see your work in the flesh, could you talk us through the idea behind the Dead Ed Woods?”

Voice: “Those unfortunates can view the photographs, which in some respects work better than the real thing. The idea is what you see, a wee pair of dead octopi that like to dress in drag. I like the idea of them coming in a pair, very Noah's Ark. It’s just a series of end points from things I've been looking at. Mainly octopi and sexploitation film posters. But I've been juggling loads of things together, trying to come up with a visceral image, and that's what I spat out.”

Me: “And what is the meaning of the title, Dead Ed Woods?”

Voice: “Well of course Ed Wood was that notoriously bad filmmaker, who also liked to dress in woman's clothes. The title actually came after I'd made the piece, but I was thinking about him at the beginning when I was looking at sexploitation posters. I started watching the biopic of him by Tim Burton (which I incidentally turned off halfway), and there were octopi in the opening title. I thought that's it! Dead Ed Woods! I want to make a whole series with Octopi, not strictly to do with Ed Wood. He's more like my little alter-ego, has all the qualities a good artist needs.
The octopi that is, not Ed. Ed just had a good attitude. Kept working while failing.”

I knew the feeling. I was starting to experience some interference on the line and feared the consequences if I didn’t manage to get the whole scoop.

Me: “Wait! Don't go, Mr Oprey! My editor will keep me behind after hours and beat me with a medieval leather and wood dildo belonging to his late wife if I fail to get the scoop on your octopus obsession!”

Voice: “Well what do u wanna know? It’s a secret recipe.”

Me: “Um, well, what do you like about them? Why octopuses? Why not hanged mice, or snakes? Actually, not snakes.........”

Voice: “The mouse has been done to death anyway. And snakes, too phallic. Octopi are highly intelligent beings. They are also very jealous, spiteful and envious - and can also have transvestite qualities.”

More crackling on the line. It was no use. He was gone. Was it even him? He did sound muffled, as though speaking through a tissue… I hope to God I can get a decent story out of this…

Thursday, 26 November 2009

Repulsive Retard

Neu gruppe show at Edinburgh College of Art.

Monday, 23 November 2009

Monday, 16 November 2009


David Wojnarowicz

From the Rimbaud in New York series.

Thursday, 12 November 2009

Tuesday, 3 November 2009

Last Night's Viewing

In one of my favourite of her movies, Bette Davis plays Mrs Taggart, the mother (and mother-in-law) from Hell who forces her 3 sons to join her in celebrating her wedding anniversary - despite the fact that her husband is long dead. The gathering is merely an excuse for the matriarch to humiliate and exert control over her grown children whom she fears could abandon her. Thanks to Mrs Taggart's 'unique' parenting style, each of her sons have grown up somewhat dysfunctional; Her eldest, Henry, is shy and submissive yet ventures out at night to steal female underwear from clotheslines to try on in private. Middle child Terry is a harrassed father of a growing brood whose wife, Karen, is pressuring him to escape to Canada, away from the influence of his overbearing mother. Yet Terry has always felt guilty for blinding his mother in one eye as an infant, and has been trying to compensate for it ever since and win her approval. Young Tommy is mummy's darling - until he brings home his pregnant fiancee Shirley, to whom Mrs Taggart takes an immediate and evident dislike.

The next hour and a half shows the guests being verbally torn apart by Mrs Taggart's vicious tongue - and one has to wonder how much Bette Davis, a woman renowned for her witty put-downs, actually had to act and how much came naturally. Her bitchy quips and outbursts are hilarious as well as shocking, and her outfits alone justify the purchase of this dvd. Incredibly 60s kitsch. The first get-up we see her in is a bright coral pink draped dress complete with matching nails, lipstick and eye-patch. She accessorises with a long cigarette holder and a string of pearls, naturally. When she takes her family out for dinner/public degradation ritual she is sporting a green brocade jacket, a chic neckscarf fastened with a diamond brooch to match her diamond earrings, and the ever-present eye-patch (this time a more understated black). For the entire course of the film, her perfectly styled coiffure never moves an inch, not even during the most heated argument, and her wicked mouth remains a startling slash of coral.

She is my hero.