Saturday, May 28, 2005

Blinking Marvellous

I deeply appreciate the new albums by Eels and British Sea Power. Blinking Lights and Other Revelations, which is banging out of my Zen and filling my head as I write this, is a double CD and, I confess, I have only played the first of the two CDs thus far. It is certainly a profound piece, very dark and pensive yet very melodic and pleasing to the ear. Dealing with desperation, depression, neglect and troubled lives, it is not an album for parties but I do admire its intelligence and confidence. The superb reviews it has harvested are deserved. I have vowed to myself to play and grow accustomed to Disc One before tackling the second CD. British Sea Power’s Open Season possesses a bona fide English charm, a raffish whimsy and a lovable eccentricity. It is an album whose mysterious and intriguing soundscapes evoke – for me – bygone eras with its homage to, inter alia, polar explorers and Victoriana. This is an epic set of songs and I recommend it. The single Please Stand Up is a gorgeous Echo-and-the-Bunnymen-cum-Kitchens-of-Distinction influenced four minutes of swaggering pomp. Yum.

The city club has signed Haydn Thomas from Exeter Chiefs. I am unable to recall any other Gloucester player being called Haydn but I hope an Austrian-sounding forename is not this fellow’s unique selling point as I anticipate that a speed of thought and movement and full array of scrum half skills might also accompany our new signing to Kingsholm. I will welcome any ambitious young player of quality to the club and I really hope his challenge to Peter Richards for the nine shirt is productive to both players and to the team. We seem strong in this position with Alex Page, Simon Amor and the breathtaking Ryan Lamb all on the books. We have more fine centres than one can shake a VIP membership for Liquid at as well as two superb outside halves in McRae and Mercier. The boy Lamb can, naturellement, play in both these positions too. We just need to strengthen the back three and our backs are looking good for the new season. The Thinus Delport rumour needs watching therefore.