Trying to set up Plex. I'm sure I haven't used Plex before. But once logged in, it turns out I 100% have. Back once again to the obsession-of-the-time from the mid-2000s when following Les Claypool around to see as many shows as possible and getting audience recordings of the ones I missed, I have access to a notable setlist compiler's server where I find a recording of the 2023 New Years Eve show.

Les Claypool plays New Years Eve every year. More than 20 since I became a fan. And I've never been.

What make a record store good? I visited a place in Sheffield today that absolutely looked the part, and while I left with a few items I didn't really feel like I would go back.

The selection was what-they-had rather than anything particularly curated. No new releases, and some of the less-popular releases from very well known bands.

I have to own up to a lot of this being a me problem though. I don't have the desire to dig through every shelf like I used to, and I don't have the keen eye of a more seasoned collector.

I picked up Curtis Mayfield, De La Soul, and Tom Waits.

Today I learned that Devil's Advocate was actually a legitimate position in the Catholic church. Maybe this has been common knowledge for everyone for a long time (likely), but I never really pondered the origin of that term despite its prevalent use when discussing projects at work.

In the church, the advocates role was to argue against the canonisation of a saint; looking for evidence of fraudulent miracles and overblown claims of piety. Although the role no longer officially existed at the time, Christopher Hitchens was called on to speak against the canonisation of Mother Teresa in 2003.

In my time at HMV, we would get faxes and phone calls from people working at small record labels, which ranged from some-guy-with-some-stuff up to Trojan Records.

I very rarely took anything, but I did buy a handful of copies of the Danger Mouse Grey Album.

While the album had approval from both Jay-Z and the surviving Beatles, EMI, the label that owned the rights to the Beatles' White Album (and former owners of HMV themselves), were determined to stop its distribution.

Not that this was connected to the copies purchased and sold in our store; they were someone's own pressing with the source material being a digital download.

I would have thought this kind of thing would be all over by now, but while browsing in HMC recently they had more than one bootleg TOOL live recording on vinyl. Very illegal.

The problem with owning a particular kind of car, a car that looks like it might be quick but is really totally average (with the sport mode always off) is that you get a particular kind of car-guy that drives in a certain way. Trying to provoke, have something of a race, or just show that their car is actually something special and not some pastiche of a sports car.

My response to a loud exhaust on a shitbox is never favourable, but who am I to judge someone's hobbies. I can't say that if I had been driving at 17 I wouldn't have had a Saxo or a Nova that wakes up the neighbours.

Zildjian was always my choice of cymbal, despite my time playing drums being at probably my most broke (though, this expensive taste was fortunate when the time came to sell them all in order to pay bills).

The Avedis Zildjian Company is 400 years old, starting in Constantinople in 1623. Now based in the USA, it's still run by the Zildjian family who keep the secret of the alloy used in their cymbals.

Whosampled has a took to find 6 degrees of separation between two given artists. I checked this for Les Claypool and Cory Wong, and the reasonably tenuous connection includes King Crimson and Fat Boy Slim.

A less demonstrable connection and one that is entirely subjective is that their live performances vastly exceed their studio work. This is true for them both as solo artists and in their respective bands. The energy and improvisation needs a live setting to come out, and by performing in this way night after night the music will naturally evolve into something a little more special.