Following a somewhat over-ambitious attempt at waking up at 8am, soundtracked by
Broken Social Scene – Anthems For A Seventeen Year Old Girl
My Chemical Romance – Look Alive, Sunshine
Gorillaz – Rhinestone Eyes (alone, all on Spotify)
I give in to the agony in my leg muscles and the rattling in my skull labelled ‘hangover/dehydration’ and go back to sleep, listening to the Juno director’s commentary.
The Indelicates – Sympathy for the Devil
Sex Bob-Omb – We Are Sex Bob-Omb
Janelle Monae [feat. Of Montreal] – Make The Bus (alone, all on Spotify)
help kick off Attempt At The Day#2, which starts sometime past noon. I know it’s sunny outside, despite my cold dark room at the back of the house catching absolutely no sun, and I have to get out of here. An attempt not massively helped by a disappointingly drained playing of
Los Campesinos! – A Heat Rash In The Shape Of The Show Me State
Los Campesinos! – The Sea Is A Good Place To Think Of The Future (in shower, from DS)
in an attempt to finish off yesterday’s . My portable speaker-block’s batteries are dying, I think, and both songs come off entirely lackluster.
I give
Los Campesinos! – The Sea Is A Good Place To Think Of The Future
another go on my proper speaker system in my bedroom – it does surprisingly little for me, for a song I would general identify as a candidate of Favourite of All Time – so I just let it go, and go to the pub, and meet up with friends in Birmingham’s Best Beer Garden and chat in a way inappropriate to the family-friendly attitude of the pub.
…And from there, everything’s golden. We have a BBQ, and a playlist is accordingly constructed. I won’t bore you with the exact tracklist – or myself with the effort of transcription – but what stand out are
Fleetwood Mac – Dreams
Flobots – Handlebars [DJ Shadow Remix]
The Horrors – Sea Within A Sea
Royksopp – The Girl & The Robot
Asher Roth – I Love College
Iggy Pop – The Passenger
I Blame Coco [feat. Robyn] – Caesar
Fleetwood Mac – The Chain
Kenny Rogers – I Just Dropped In To See What Condition My Condition Was In (in garden, with good company, on Spotify)
It’s the kind of day that a certain type of music was made for. Stealing illicit bounces on next door’s trampoline; mixing gin, beer and Pimms in a fashion most irresponsibe; flinging frisbees wildly off in the wrong direction, and – mostly – having stupid noisy conversations… For thirty-second flashes at a time, life feels like being in a music video, or some aspirational KFC advert or something.

But what really dominates my day, if I’m being 100% honest, is the Walker’s advert version of that Lionel Richie song (save! one! for! me! something something…extra crunchy!), on account of being catchy in that way that lends itself to constant adapting of the lyrics to whatever banal thought is currently in your brain. It’s so thoroughly embedded that it leaks over into


Wherein I wake up determined not to repeat yesterday’s flat beginning, and then end up playing videogames in bed for a couple of hours. Shower is accompanied by a fuzzy, poorly-tuned version of
Marilyn Manson – Tainted Love (alone, on radio)
To which the DJ (this is Kerrang! radio) says something embarrassing about using the song to get girls ‘shaking their asses’. Nevertheless, I am surprised to find the song still works. I sing along, a bit, and get ready to take on the sunshine. Start a runthrough of
Kanye West – ‘My Dark Beautiful Twisted Fantasy’ (tracks 1, 12, 13, back-garden, on Spotify)
before realising shuffle is still on. Muffled curses – mainly sung in a poor impression of Lionel Richie – decide to take this to the park, but not before my daily listen to
Childish Gambino – Break (x2, alone, on Spotify)
Which is still brilliant and I’m still finding new favourite bits of: today’s is probably the “I’m chasing the blues away like Gargamel” line.
My time in the park is musically defined only by the hollow drumbeats of some rubbish, distant music and one ringing of
Super Smash Bros Soundtrack – Pokemon Battle Theme (on my phone)
to signify Sam calling me.
Later: home, a couple of tracks of
Radiohead – ‘The King of Limbs’ (tracks 1-3, in garden, with Sam, on Spotify)
before my laptop dies; then
Kimya Dawson – Walk Like Thunder (in garden, with Sam, from Soundcloud)
Which is quite slight for such a long song, but I think I like it: back to this one later, I think. For now, let’s finish off
Radiohead – ‘The King of Limbs’ (tracks 3-8, in garden, with Sam, on Spotify)
which seeps, accidentally but not unwelcomely, into
Does It Offend You, Yeah? – ‘Don’t Say We Didn’t Warn You’ (tracks 1-8, in garden, alone, on Spotify)
Which sounds a little softer in this last hour of warmth and sunlight than I remembered from the recent gig. It’s certainly a lot quieter than their first album – although, again, that could be based off of a misconceived memory – and when the singer focuses on actually singing, in what could be termed an emotional fashion, his voice goes a little too Athlete. It’s nice to have that big fat worst-house-party-next-door-ever-when-the-hell-will-they-go-bed noise contrasted against something, though. It gets to the overly Nathan Barley semi-rap of Wondering, earnestly invoking Bill Hicks and Lee Harvey Oswald, and I give up, and go in search of something more suitable to finishing Wonder Boys, the Michael Chabon novel I have been working sporadically through for, seemingly, as long as Grady Tripp on his eponymous manuscript. I land upon
Radiohead – ‘In Rainbows’ (tracks 1-4, in garden, alone, on Spotify)
And finish it I do, and lie on my front to the sound of the suddenly invidual-seeming
Radiohead – All I Need (garden, alone, on Spotify)
taking in that strange moment following the close of a well-enjoyed but hard-fought novel, and begin to mentally construct this paragraph, before the full, square beats of the song suck me in. And as I lie, glasses off, in a back garden no longer touched by a square-inch of sun, watching an indeterminate black bob of insect flutter out and over the fence, beyond any potential of identification, as the sounds of the nearby road and overly noisy children overtaking the song, I resolve not – until the new week begins tomorrow – to listen to any more music.


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