2016 Faves

I’m so late posting this that the apocalypse is nearly upon us. They’ll be no time for such frivolities as listening to records in our nuclear charred future so I feel better about cramming in so much listening to every waking hour right now. 


Anxiety - Anxiety (La Vida Es Un Mus) / Yves Tumor - Serpent Music (PAN) / Roy Montgomery - R M H Q (Grapefruit) / Innsyter - Poison Life (L.A. Club Resource) / Accident Du Travail - Très Précieux Sang (The Trilogy Tapes) / The Lavender Flu - Heavy Air (Meds) / Roger Robinson - Dog Heart City (Jahtari) / Es - Object Relations (La Vida Es Un Mus) / France - Do Den Haag Church (Mental Groove) / City Yelps - The City Yelps Half Hour (Horsey) / Demdike Stare - Wonderland (Modern Love) / Scheich In China - Scheich in China (VIS) / Beatrice Dillon & Karen Gwyer - split (Alien Jams) / Heartplay - Téléphone (white label)


Ras Michael & The Sons Of Negus - Promised Land Sounds (Dug Out) / Shadow - Sweet Sweet Dreams (Jamwax) / Gloria Ann Taylor - Love Is A Hurtin’ Thing (Luv ‘n’ Haight) / Mystic Inane - EPs of M/I (La Vida Es Un Mus) / B.B. Seaton - Dancing In The Moonlight (Jamwax) / This Heat reissues (Light In The Attic) / Sky Girl comp (Efficient Space) / Richard Davis - Methane Sea (Spanish Mission) / Augustus Pablo - Africa Must Be Free By 1983 (Rockers International) / Laddio Bolocko - Live & Unreleased 1997 - 2000 (No Quarter) / Alex Chilton - Dusted In Memphis (Bangkok) / Wicked Witch - Under Your Spell (Em)

Helena Celle - If I Can’t Handle Me At My Best, Then You Don’t Deserve You At Your Worst (night school) / Marie Davidson (minimal wave) / John Bender reissues (superior viaduct) / People Skills (blackest ever black) / The World (upset the rhythm) / Digital Zandoli comp (heavenly sweetness) / Abdou El Omari - Nuits D'Été Avec (radio martiko) / Errol Brown - Orthodox Dub (dub store) / Sonya Spence - Sings Love (attic salt discs)

The World - First World Record - I suppose it’s time to start calling this kind of music “neoclassic postpunk.” I’m looking forward to more of it!

The World are five people from Oakland, California who write rambunctious dance music with a post punk tool kit and an insightful yet short attention span. Their songs typically clock in around two minutes long and are a wild head-rush of Amber Sermeno’s funk-minded bass lines and shuddering dubbed-out guitar courtesy of Andy Jordan. Amber also sings alongside Elyse Schrock, who anchors their propulsive songs with some supremely robust drumming. The steady beat is bolstered by Stanley Martinez’s flurrying saxophone melodies and Alexa Pantalone’s expansive bongo rhythms. Alexa also plays sax on half of the songs too, contributing further to the complex interplay of instruments that make The World’s music so immediate, compelling and groove conscious.

The World sound like the future erupting out of all your favourite DIY punk 7”s simultaneously. There’s the infectious momentum of Essential Logic driving things ever forward, the arty minimalism of Lilliput underscoring the band’s lyrical subject matter. Whilst the instinctual songwriting of Swell Maps pervades alongside the manic humour and inclusiveness of Splodge. The World use all these lightning rods as jumping on points to hurtle us all into a new dimension very much of their own making. This upsurge of energy and vision has now been skillfully captured on the band’s debut LP ‘First World Record, out this October 6th on Upset The Rhythm.

10 Minute Dance Party

Hey guys! Let’s dance. 

Originally posted by thefictious

In our video on self care, @iamzachvalenti and I talk about (and experience) the beauty of the 10 minute dance party. Because it’s all about taking care of yo brain, I figured I’d take away some of the stress of choosing a good song to rock out to. They are separated by genre, but each has a good flow of mostly upbeat songs to get you out of your head and into your body.

So here are some options for a solid 10 minute dance-a-thon: 

(because these playlists are so short, I’m just gonna lists the songs and you can put them together on your music sharing service of choice!) 


  • “Mr. Brightside” by The Killers
  • “Do You Want To” by Franz Ferdinand
  • “I Wanna Get Better” by Bleachers

Dance Pop

  • “Don’t Cha” by The Pussycat Dolls
  • “Breakin’ Dishes” by Rihanna
  • “Bulletproof” by La Roux

Girl Power

  • “Don’t Upset the Rhythm” by Noisettes
  • “Telephone” by Lady Gaga & Beyonce
  • “Crushcrushcrush” by Paramore


  • “Stronger” by Kanye West
  • “King Kunta” by Kendrick Lamar
  • “The Way I Are (Remix)” by Timbaland

Pop Punk

  • “The World” by The Starting Line
  • “Everything Is Alright” by Motion City Soundtrack
  • “The Middle” by Jimmy Eat World


  • “Can’t Feel My Face” by The Weeknd
  • “Caught Up” by Usher
  • “Hey Ya” by Outkast
The Path to Enlightenment pt 3

This is a casefile set just before Biogenesis in season six. Thank you to @teethnbone for throwing me scraps to use as inspiration for this story.

Read Part One  Part Two

Part Three
Gil Tripodi was bunched up on a seat in the café on the corner of the main street. He was nursing a black coffee and a broken heart. When he looked into Scully’s eyes she saw nothing but pain and regret. Mulder introduced her and Tripodi barely nodded.            

“Mr Tripodi, I’m sorry for your loss. Agent Mulder has given me some background on what happened in the caves. I know it’s a difficult time but we’re hoping you could go over some of the details again.”            

He stirred his coffee and Scully watched the dark liquid spin in the cup. She pulled her coat tighter around her.            

“David had been busy at work. Stressed, really. Months and months of disagreements with his business partner, a nosedive in profits.”            

“He owned a restaurant?” Scully clarified.            

“Yes. He trained as a chef in France. His cooking was exquisite. I…” he stopped and sniffed back tears. “He carried the strain with him, he suffered migraines and they became more frequent. He was short-tempered, snappy with me. We argued a lot. I suggested we come here, try to ease the strain. This was ‘our’ spot. These were ‘our’ caves. We were both looking forward to it.”            

Scully watched his face. His eyes half-shut, his lips quivered, his chin tilted towards the window and he breathed out a slow breath. “He was upbeat that morning. He talked about selling his share in the business, starting his own bistro. He…he held my hand as we walked around. He was happy.”          

“Agent Mulder and I are going back to the caves now. To retrace your steps. Is there anything else you can think of, anything unusual that happened before you separated, anything Mr Maddox said that was out of the ordinary?”            

Gil Tripodi shook his head and choked out bitter laugh. “We’d been talking about the future, throwing about names for the bistro. He wanted something exotic, French. He stopped suddenly, told me he loved me and only wanted the best for me. I told him it was his decision. Then we saw that strange little man, and David went after him. I told him not to. Something just felt wrong. It was like the atmosphere changed.”            

Scully leant towards him. “How so?”            

“One minute there was hope, and the next I felt a wave of anxiety come over me. I felt desperately that we needed to leave, to get out, but David was chasing after that man and I had to follow.”            

“Did David say anything to the man?” Scully asked.            

“I couldn’t make out the words but I heard his voice. It was calm, gentle, soothing almost. But when I got there, he was gone. David was just gone.” 

Mulder was talking on the phone. The ranger at the Visitor Centre was telling her with an equal mix of scorn and pride, about the sightings of the small figure in the caves, variously a ghost, a homeless woman, a Moon-Eyed leader or the spirit of a child lost in the system more than a hundred years ago. Scully was trying to tune him out as she flipped through the book on the counter.

“What do you know about ciladaids?”            

“Ma’am, no offence, but your partner already asked me this stuff. He seems like the one who’s open to believe this kind of thing, but you, you seem like the sensible type. These are the sorts of stories that sell books. Tourists lap it up. The Moon-Eyes and the ciladaids and the path to enlightenment and all that. It’s just marketing BS.”            

Scully shut the book with a satisfying thwump. “Thank you, Sir.”            

Mulder joined them. “Find out anything new, Scully?”            

“Just that people love to hear a good story. Did you get the water?”          

He held up two bottles. “Ready?”          

“Are you?” she asked, holding his gaze.            

His lips opened with a pop but he said nothing. 

The sun was high overhead, bright in a hard blue sky. The rock formations on the ridges seemed paler, sharper, viciously scraping the air around them. The caves seemed darker, deeper, boundless somehow. She walked ahead of Mulder, swinging the beam of her flashlight over the cave roof and walls capturing the silvery dance of dust with each arc.             

“I’ve been trying to work out why the ciladaids would want to lead people to their deaths? Why would the Moon-Eyes allow that? Was it some kind of primitive justice system? Did they use it as some kind of punishment? Was it a test, an initiation ceremony? How did they choose their subjects?”

She stopped to inspect the walls, silvery liquid streaks running down the walls. “What if it were the other partner who had to make the decision, who had to change in some way?”

“I read a few stories where the subject was saved from a terrible fate. But mostly the stories are tragic. Scully?”            

She swung around to make out Mulder a few yards away. “What, Mulder?”            
“Is something bothering you?”            

“Yes,” she said, holding the light down to highlight the smooth cave floor. “I’m thirsty.”            

“You’ve been distracted since we came here.” He handed her a bottle of water.            
She watched him as she drank. “I guess I don’t see why we’re here. It feels like you’ve plucked this case from out of nowhere. Like an initiation ceremony for me.” She sucked in a juddering breath, pressed the cool bottle against the pulse in her wrist. “And, if you want me to be totally honest…” The small nod of his head, the way his eyelids began to close, the jut of his lips gave her permission to go on. “I feel some kind of distance from you. In truth, Mulder, I think it’s you who’s distracted.”            

He shifted on his feet. “And you think it’s something to do with Diana?”          

“Is it?”            

He looked beyond her. “There, Scully. I see him.”            

“Who?” She swung round, following the light as it tracked over the gothic interior.            

Mulder moved past her towards the back of the atrium they were in. “The Moon-Eye,” he said, turning back into the beam of her light.

His expression was pure wonder, a look she’d seen many times. Usually, this childlike Mulder was a joy to be around, his enthusiasm infectious, but something stirred in her blood and she stood rooted to the spot, unable to follow. He melted away into the darkness and she turned off the flashlight. Under the ground, hearing only the pulse of her own life force beating in her ears, she sank to her knees. Her skull tightened under a pressure she couldn’t determine. Her skin cooled. Her chest sunk in as she struggled to breathe. Her fingertips scraped on the cave floor, bulking dust under her nails until it hurt. She knew she should call out but she couldn’t face Mulder and his concern, genuine or otherwise. When she looked up, she caught sight of the man. Small, gaunt, ethereal. She blinked twice but was unable to shake the vision. This man, this Moon-Eye with his pale skin, his neat, pointed beard, his wide grey eyes that shone, he crooked a finger towards her. He smiled. His presence changed the rhythm, upset the tempo. She heard herself moan.

“Look up, Dana,” he said.

She shook her head, aware at least of danger on some subconscious level. Despite her scepticism about Mulder’s rote knowledge of the Moon-Eyes and the ciladaids, she instinctively knew not to follow his orders, not to open her eyes.

“It’s the only way, Dana. You know it. He’s leaving you. If you open your eyes to the truth, you’ll find the better path.”

His voice was fluid, seductive. She knew he was moving towards her, she could feel his aura and as warming as his presence was, she shivered and felt chilled to her marrow. Her eyes flickered open and she saw the light he cast around her. Where was Mulder? Was he safe?

“Come with me. I’ll show you the way,” he said.

“No. I don’t want to go. I won’t go. I don’t need to go.”

His hand swept over her and she felt the air freeze around her. She sucked in a breath, her heart hammering.

“You are troubled and he dishonours you with his distance.”

“No! He is my partner. Mulder! Where are you?”

She dragged herself backwards, across a sharp ridge on the floor. She felt the sting on her skin, the rush of blood to the surface. Sense zinged back into her, sharpening her thoughts. She pushed herself up, held a hand up to blot out the man. She called for Mulder again. Dust danced between them. He shimmered behind it, like a pale flame dancing and teasing. She turned away, looked at the solid grey mass of the cave wall. Logically, she knew she shouldn’t be able to see with any clarity but this man, the Moon-Eye seemed to be casting a glow strong enough to illuminate the smallest details.

It was suddenly so clear. She stood up, walked towards him. He held out his hand. He was so small, so contained. And there were no blurred edges or ambiguity. He was unequivocal. He just was.His touch was smoother than she expected, cooler. She shivered as he gripped her hand.

“Look up, Dana. See your way.”

She tipped up her chin, blinking against the unexpected brightness. The world above her was a miasma of sparkling fragments floating around her. They danced and shimmied around her face and she groped around her trying to connect, to catch them. 


music video for “Namaste”


People are what ruin me
Seeing them, hearing them, knowing they think it’s okay to say things to me
Like they get to be in some part of my life
People upset my rhythm, their misfortunes flow through my brain like a river
I can’t explain it to anyone when they ask me why I don’t look happy
What could I say? I feel too much of everything and everything around me is a mess
When I close my eyes I see everything in colour
But when they are open all I see is dark.

a million years ago, bropunzeling asked me for paulie/nealer and “things we said at the kitchen table”

i’m not sorry.



On game days, Paulie makes omelettes, stuffed with turkey and spinach and mushrooms. James puts ketchup on his just to see him frown over his glasses.

‘You’re disgusting,’ Paulie says, over the rim of his coffee cup. James grins at him through a mouthful of bagel.

‘You love me,’ he says.

Paulie shrugs, jabs at a chunk of turkey with his fork. ‘I have bad taste.’

James swallows his mouthful and leans over to kiss him on the cheek, lips sticky with juice.

Paulie rolls his eyes, but James sees him pretending not to smile.

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