Brain Bite #16

Posted by Rob on 22nd September 2015 in Brain Bites |

Well, the things they are a-happenin’. Or at least, some of ’em anyway. So I figured it’s time to get another one of these thrown together, and book-end it with some suitably heavy music (which, I admit, may not be to everyone’s taste, my wife included). We’ll start with:

10 Masked Men: Stayin’ Alive
I’m sure by now, people other than me have come across 10 Masked Men, but I only found them recently. A British death-metal band that seems to deal largely in covers of popular songs, I have bypassed their entertaining covers of Hit Me Baby One More Time and Livin’ La Vida Loca (as well as Baggy Trousers by Madness, which may actually be my favourite), and come straight to the Bee Gees “Stayin’ Alive”. Layered over the original’s video, this put me in a tremendously good mood — though if you don’t generally take your music aggressive and your vocals more percussive than melodic, you may find their version a little hard-going. Still, I’d recommend sticking around at least as far as the first chorus.

(I also recommend watching it soon, as it appears that the music producers who own this video are merrily taking it down, so this may not be available in this form forever…)

And thence, to…

Writers of the Future
Another quarter is over, and I have a silver honourable mention to add to the honourable mention I earned previously, which is nice — one of my goals for the year was to acquire at least one HM from this contest, so I get to chalk that one off. The next quarter ends in just a fortnight, though — I have one story on slow-boil that I want to finish for the contest, but I doubt it’ll be done in time for this quarter. So I’ll probably be scratching this one, and letting my entry slide until the next.

(P.S. — I started writing this a few days ago, and since then, I’ve actually found and submitted a different story for the quarter. So the one I’m working on is still ongoing, but I do have a story in for the final voting quarter this year.)

And none of my writing was lost, despite…

Power Cuts
Recently, our power recently went completely bonkers. For six nights in a row, it went out — to the point that you could set the clock by it, dropping out at three minutes past ten and coming back on at 10:14. Adding to the fun, the flashlight I was using flickered and wouldn’t stay lit, turning the entire thing into a weird, epilepsy-inducing horror-movie episode. Fortunately, my PC is hooked up to a UPS unit, so when the power goes out, I get about six minutes to save what I’m doing and shut down without losing my work.

But you know who doesn’t do any work, any of the time?

Adventure Cats!
Because one of our cats has discovered the Outside Front, which is the bit that doesn’t have a fence. And while England has plenty of cars and people to deal with when it comes to cats going on explorations, round here we’ve got mountain lions, coyotes and black bears, not to mention bats that can carry rabies and ticks (the latter of which I really don’t like, probably because of having seen the cheesy horror-movie Ticks in my youth). So, it’s now a fun game of letting her go outside, and then wrangling her back inside before she bolts for the hills…

And Family Phonecalls
Sometimes, I just need ’em, and I really did today. A lousy day left me in a worse mood, but just calling home made me feel massively better. My wife also baked me Brazilian cheese-bread, which is one of my favourite comfort-foods, and so I ended the afternoon really feelin’ the love. And from there, my day turned a sharp one-eighty and just got better and better — and right now, I’m feeling relaxed ‘n happy. Yes indeed!

And that only leaves…

White Zombie: I Am Legend
Book-ending with some other heavy music, but even if you don’t take your music heavy as a rule, try giving the opening minute and a half a listen. It’s a simple, melodic horror-toned electric guitar solo, played with an acoustic bent. This is my favourite song from the album (with Soul-Crusher’s bass grind hot on its heels), and is based around the movie of the same name, which is something of a Zombie modus operandi. (And to those who don’t like this metal malarkey — I’ll try and pick something different next time!)

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  • The Ould Git says:

    Music first – that Ten Masked Men thing is good, with or without the video, on different levels. Raises the question : Why hasn’t Barry Gibb done a final cover of this song anyhow? That could be a larf, especially if he teamed up with Ringo Starr and Paul McCartney ….
    Strangely, the White Zombie track’s pretty good as well – as you say, that first guitar intro part is nice, followed by a classic metal offering – love how the bass drives the thing along, although I can’t catch some of the words. What really threw me was the end of the video, which, a la YouTube, sticks up some similar stuff for your perusal, except that here, we got
    ‘La Sexorcisto Devil Music’,’Welcome to Planet’, another instance of ‘I am Legend’ , then, with a piccie of Gene Kelly or some such, ‘Best Songs of the 1950s (50-52)’ ???
    On the subject of moggy adventures, Tinks has managed to get out and about a few times, but has found that she doesn’t like the taste of mud on her usually immaculate paws. I’m pretty convinced that, like all felines, she could adapt to the great outdoors, but given the uncertain fate of Kipper, Set and Osiris, we’re reluctant to let her roam free too often, although bears and mountain lions may be thinner on the ground around here.
    That Brazilian cheese-bread might be a good’un for Chris’s gluten-free regime. He seems to be managing OK (as am I, incidentally, as I quite enjoy most of it as well) on both a veggie and GF diet, which we’re managing to expand as we get more adventurous.
    On the writing front, nice to see you’re getting the ball rolling.
    Inspired, I’ve resurrected the opening of an old pot-boiler I was working on a few years ago, and just to get my eye in, I’ve scribbled a few additional notes on it. I might give it a go if I get any satisfaction out of it – the jury’s out on that for the moment.
    I still prefer short bursts of poetic crud.
    (Talking of creativity, it’s funny how I lost the muse for writing tunes and hymns – doesn’t interest me one bit any more, although I still like to play a couple of the things I started writing ages ago.)
    Any idea of publication, though, is out of the question. My ramblings can be read after I’m gone by anybody who fancies finding out what made me tick!

  • Lizzie says:


    I wonder if you’ve ever seen this guy? I stumbled across him a while ago, another ‘covers’ type guy who puts an interesting twist on songs.

    Anyway, quite like your Stayin’ Alive video, as well as the other one, actually. Both a little heavier than my normal, but I have been enjoying exploring music lately, through Spotify.

    As far as creativity is concerned, glad you’re getting some good feedback on your writing 🙂 I’ll never be that good at it, but have plenty of artsy fartsy ideas floating around that I really should get around to at some point!!

    The ‘I’m too busy with work and keeping house’ sentiment seems to be all too easy of an option, these days. Blech. I’m sure I’ll get into it again soon. 🙂

  • Mum says:

    Sadly the video was never visible to me. Pity as it sounded promising.
    Don’t know if you have the same thing over there, but ticks are a serious health hazard here with Lyme Disease – dreadful for man and beast. Might be worth keeping her in if it’s possible.
    Love the White Zombie intro. Beautifully played.

    Sorry this is late. I’ve had the post flagged for ages, but forgot to get back to it!

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