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I've just launched my new Kickstarter project, "Wild Card Symphonies", a 128 page book of poems that I've written.

The campaign page can be found at so please drop by and have a look and if you're interested in supporting me please make a pledge and/or share the link to let others know!

You can read some of the poems that are included over at

I'm not expecting the campaign to set the world on fire, as poetry campaigns generally don't do very well on Kickstarter, but it's a way of finally being able to publish even a few copies



(Poetry) Japanese Inn

Old Friend

Japanese Inn

But never again,

I put my trust in you.
And what did you do?
You just turned and walked,
Turned....and walked away.

Walked away.

You threw me a smile
And that good-bye look.
Laughing as you left
Through my door.
Straight through my heart
Without a prayer,
At all.

You told them

Of our last secret
Without even touching the wine
They tried to give,
They were told to give.

Now as I pass
The Japanese inn,
Where the legend unfolds,
Janey’s diary is opened
For all the world.
And the secrets come out.
And the last secret,
Is told.

But never again,
I put my trust in you.
And what did you do?
You just turned and walked,
Turned....and walked away.

Walked away.
You threw me a smile
And that good-bye look.
Laughing as you left
Through my door.
Straight through my heart.
Without a prayer,
At all.

And now you’ve spilled
Innocent blood.
And instead of a letter,
Instead of Eden,
You inherit the wind
And the colour
Of the moon.

Now you live in sweet danger
As the sun sets at dawn.
Now it’s not only make-believe
That’s coming for you,
It’s the ruins of tarot,
And the wind
From the moon.

Now as I pass
The Japanese inn,
Where the stolen kisses stand,
Janey’s diary is opened
And the world understands
Why secrets,
Sometimes should remain untold.

I put my trust in you,
As the smile leaves your face,
As you read the words.
As you cry alone.
As the sun comes to an end,
And you scream it’s not true.
It’s a wicked heart that’s hidden
As you dance to the tune.

I throw you a smile
And that good-bye look,
As I walk away,
As I walk to Eden,
Without a prayer at all
For you.

And a sad wind
Blows from the sea.

By A R J Abranson
(Taken From ' Wild Card Symphonies')


Top 50 Bands - February 2014

Old Friend

The below are the bands I've listend to most in February on iTunes or my iPod. Inspiration, downtime, or just to keep me company whilst I work. This list made up a large part of my soundtrack over the last 28 days...

February also saw five new entries, and a host of re-entries, into the list. The highest new entry is Cabaret Voltaire at #7 which is down to me discovering that a number of their back catalog had been reissued on CD for the first time in probably 20 years. I had a bunch of old vinyl LPs from them which I used to listen to a lot but finding reasonably priced second hand CDs of their past albums was a nightmare so the reissue was a dream come true.

I was surprised The Herbaliser (NE #33) hadn't appeared on my lists before as I listen to them quite a bit - but I guess never enough times each month to have 'charted' before. I even use a take on the opening track on their 'Very Mercenary" album as my intro on my 'About' sections on Facebook and Live Journal. Other new entries this month were Ashbury Heights, Ghostland and Avicii.

Here is February's Top 50 taken from my playlist:

Top 50 Bands – February 2014

Position / Last Month / Band

1 / 3 Enigma

2 / 6 The Mission

3 / 4 The Sisters of Mercy

4 / 1 New Model Army

5 / 5 Conjure One

6 / 18 In Strict Confidence

7 / NE Cabaret Voltaire

8 / 27 Lorde

9 / RE Linkin Park

10 / 7 Ghost Dance

11 / 8 Fields of the Nephilim

12 / 14 Daft Punk

13 / 10 Dead Can Dance

14 / 13 Mind.In.A.Box

15 / 22 THYX

16 / 36 Liquid Divine

17 / RE :Wumpscut:

18 / 24 Lana Del Rey

19 / 19 Portishead

20 / 9 Nine Inch Nails

21 / 20 Clannad

22 / 21 Fischerspooner

23 / RE Delerium

24 / RE Tori Amos

25 / 23 Iron Maiden

26 / 28 Front 242

27 / 25 Justin Sullivan

28 / 26 Metallica

29 / 29 Jeremy Soule – Skyrim OST

30 / 31 Garbage

31 / 32 Levellers

32 / 33 Gary Numan

33 / NE The Herbaliser

34 / RE Snow Patrol

35 / NE Ashbury Heights

36 / 34 MS MR

37 / 35 U2

38 / RE Magnum

39 / 39 All About Eve

40 / 38 Covenant

41 / NE Ghostland

42 / 41 Juno Reactor

43 / RE My Life With The Thrill Kill Kult

44 / 44 Star Industry

45 / 47 Sleepthief

46 / NE Avicii

47 / 45 Chvrches

48 / RE Blank & Jones

49 / RE Tool

50 / RE Sohodolls

Angus' Top XX of 2013

Old Friend
I’ve been running my ‘Top xx’ of the year posts since 2004 on Live Journal. It’s a personal review of the year of my favourite films, books and bands, and sometimes other things (such as dvds or clubs I’ve been to – when I once lived in London and went clubbing on a regular basis atleast – le sigh).

I usually post this at the beginning of January, but it’s not unusual to be a few days late due to me not usually being at home on the 1st.

This covers 2013 – but has been streamlined to only include cinema trips and gigs. I saw a lot less bands in 2013 than in 2012 (largely down to going to Reading Festival in 2012 ;p) but hope to do more in the coming year.

Top 20 Films of 2013
20. Enders Game
19. Epic
18. Kick-Ass 2
17. Despicable Me 2
16. The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey
15. Pacific Rim
14. Iron Man 3
13. Anchorman 2
12. Mortal Instruments: City of Bones
11. Oblivion
10. Thor 2
9. We’re the Millers
8. Machete Kills
7. Elysium
6. Man of Steel
5. Star Trek: Into Darkness
4. World War Z

3. Saving Mr. Banks
2. Hunger Games: Catching Fire
1. Rush
2013 saw a jump in the number of films I saw at the cinema from 2012. I managed to make it out to the silver screen 33 times, up from a lowly 25 in 2012, but still well down from the 45 trips in 2011, 49 in 2010, and 42 in 2009. Will I get back up to the 40’s in 2014? Who knows…
I didn’t see as many bands in 2013 but I did enjoy most of those I did manage to catch. Looking forward to 2014 as I should be seeing a lot more live music (I already have several gigs booked…) but here’s my Top 5 live bands of 2013…
Top 5 Live Bands of 2013
5. The Naked & Famous
4. 1000 Planets

3. The Mission
2. Fields of the Nephilim
1. Roger Waters “The Wall”

Anyway, that's it from 2013.
You can find my previous ‘Best of’s…” via the following links:
2012 Top XX -

2011 Top XX -

2010 Top XX -

2009 Top 10 –

2008 Top 10 -

2007 Top 15 -

2006 Top 15 -

2005 Top 15 -

2004 Top 10 -
Old Friend
GIG 114: Vendemmian / Incubus Succubus / Junk - The Dome - 09/03/93

This was an interesting gig on a number of levels.

For starters it was the first time I saw Incubus Succubus or Vendemmian live. I got to know both bands reasonably well over the ensuing years and still know members from both today.

I knew Incubus Succubus (before they replaced the c's with the k's) because one of my friends (Mal) used to play in a band called The Screaming Dead back in the 80's with Tony (who was central to Incubus Succubus with his wife, Candia) and Mal had played me some of their music and I joined him for the gig. Vendemmian was a band I'd heard a reasonable amount about as two of the members had been part of Restoration - another London goth band I had an EP of (and whose other members I'd later get to know through other bands and the club scene).

But this was my first experience of both.

It amused me that at one point someone from Vendemmian (I think it was Dave) mistook me from someone in Incubus Succubus. Well, it was the Inkies first ever London gig and no one really knew them at the time - so an easy mistake back then.

I can't remember Junk at all - they were apparently pretty good but as the other two bands rose to prominence in the scene (Incubus Succubus actually went on to perform live on TV a few years later) Junk must have splintered or atleast never really cracked the surface properly.

Incubus Succubus were absolutely fantastic - and I certainly am not surprised that they grew to be one of the biggest bands on the goth/pagan circuit who still command a good following and audiences at their shows even today.

Vendemmian were enjoyable but didn't blow me away. I ended up seeing them quite a few times (including a few months after this one) and they were much better on those occasions. But then they might have been outshone on this occasion by being supported by Incubus Succubus (who went on to headline in London after this).

All in all a great night out though, and very memorable.

We all went straight from this to Camden Palace to see Daisy Chainsaw - but that's GIG 115 and I'll write about that in a few days :)

930309 Vendemmian
Old Friend
GIG 113: Black Maria / Between The Eyes / Brood - The Rock Garden - 23/02/93

Unfortunately I have no recollection as to any of the bands on this evening. I know that I was at the gig with John and Sarah, but that's it. Black Maria were (according to my notes) pretty good whilst their two support bands for the evening were both 'alright'. But that's about it.

There have been other bands more recently called Black Maria (I found two when I did a search to see my memory could be jogged) but both of those were bands that started in the 2000's so aren't these guys. As such, I continue to have no recollection of them or the night. Sorry!

921207 TG5
Old Friend
GIG 112: RDF (Radical Dance Faction) - The Dandy Lion - 22/02/93

Now this was something different. A band that people had actually heard of playing Barnet's Monday night student/alternative night at The Dandy Lion. R.D.F. was/are a band who came out of the crustie/free festival scene that played with ska, dub and punk. They'd gotten some coverage in the music press and the occasional tune showed up every so often in the indie clubs back in the early/mid 90's.

I've no idea how they ended up playing at The Dandy Lion on a Monday night, and to be fair we'd probably have been there anyway but having them was an added draw.

However, I think I wasn't really in the mood for their blend of music at that point - or the Dandy Lions sound system and ambiance just didn't suit them. Whatever the reason I was disappointed with them - which I'm pretty sure was a one-off as I thin in the right atmosphere - especially in a field somewhere in the summer - they'd be ace to see live.

They're still going so who knows, I may get the chance one day :)

930222 RDF
Old Friend
GIG 109: Suspiria - The Dandy Lion 28/12/92
GIG 110: Moon - The Dandy Lion 11/01/93
GIG 111: Demi-Gods - The Dandy Lion 08/02/93

I'm wrapping up the next three gigs I went to in to a single entry here. Mainly because they were all small 'student/alternative' Monday night gigs at The Dandy Lion in Barnet. As mentioned a few times, the bands the played the Dandy Lion were generally local bands and often not all that great. There were some exceptions, but they were certainly few and far between.

The main reason we headed over to Barnet was to see friends, have a few drinks, and dance away as the 'club' night either side of the band was good fun and had some excellent music.

Over the above three nights we saw Suspiria (not the goth band of the same name that appeared a few years later), Moon, and Demi-Gods. The first two were fairly dull whilst Demi-Gods were good fun and comprised of a few people we knew (who had been in some other local bands - I think formerly Bogus Gods).

The December gig (Suspiria) was great fun as it was the first night out after Christmas and we had a load of people join us - including Martin & Michelle from Brighton, Yvonne, Dawn, Michael, Helen, Sunil, Liz, Sarah amongst many others. Everyone had obviously had enough of the 'quiet' Christmas break and wanted to get out and let their hair down :)

921207 TG5
Old Friend
GIG 108: The Levellers / Moonflowers - Birmingham NEC - 19/12/92

To be honest, I have no idea how we ended up at this gig. I'm pretty sure it was one of those last minute "hey Angus, we have some spare tickets for a gig tonight, wanna come?" moments.

All I know is that I ended up having a really hectic and long day. It was Saturday and I was working but managed to somehow bribe my way into being able to leave two hours early so I could meet up with  Dawn, Paul and Mark and drive from London to Birmingham to see The Levellers.

Moonflowers, the support act, were a Bristol based indie-jazz-funk band. Now I'll be one of the first people to say I'm not generally a fan of the "jazz-funk" sound and have unfortunately seen a few dire bands in that genre back in the 90's - but for whatever reason my 20-year-old self seems to have liked Moonflowers looking at the diary entry for this gig. I can only imagine they put on a good show and had a good mix of tracks because the one song of their's I just played on Youtube to see who they were sounded appalling!

This was surprisingly only the third time I'd seen The Levellers (I saw them in 1991, 1992 and now in 1993!) but they had jumped venue size on every occasion. The NEC was massive and, apart from when I would see them at festivals, was the largest venue I'd see them in. To be honest I prefer seeing them in smaller venues or at outdoor festivals anyway as I find very few 'arena' gigs have the atmosphere and certainly nowhere near the same intimacy as even venues such as Brixton Academy.

The Levellers pulled it off though (no surprise really as they are one of the bets live acts out there - still are and always were!) and gave us a fantastic evening!

We then had to head back to London where I was supposed to be at a friends party that evening. I eventually got there just after 1am but as the party didn't wrap until after 6am I didn't miss anything ;)

Price: £10

921219 The Levellers

GIG 107: TG5 - The Dandy Lion 07/12/92

Old Friend
GIG 107: TG5 - The Dandy Lion 07/12/92

I'm afraid to say I don't recall TG5 at all and the diary entry for them is rather 'blah'. They weren't very good but then The Dandy Lion Alternative Nights were more about the friends and 'club night' aspect than the live bands so no real surprise there.

921102 Fluff

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