Russ and Rui swim around in the swamp of pop culture, seeking new adventures. Expect talk about movies, TV, music, books, media, concerts and the latest trends and news, including politics. Music mostly provided by Russ's band Grover's Mill. We're also using this platform to promote our advocacy group Democracy At Work, featuring excerpts from Richard Wolff's Economic Updates.
Rui and Russ indulge in a little criticism of other podcasts this time around. It's cheeky of them (and as Russ says, a bit 'meta'), but someone has to do it. Russ praises the latest season of Media Watch and speaks glowingly of The Guardian and all things alt media. The boys also rant about local politics, then there's an enlightened chat about the state of that sad South American country, Venezuela. Rui reviews a book on Why Dylan Matters and also Stephen King's On Writing. Russ then speaks of a lovely day he spent in Carlton at the Katherine Syme library and Readings, and of books bought, borrowed and abandoned, including Joseph Campbell's The Hero With A Thousand Faces and Ian Doescher's The Phantom of Menace. Methinks there's a connection there! He's also turning a bit Japanese, so there's also his enthusiastic rant about all things anime and manga, featuring a review of the anime Shiro Bako. Do the Japanese really hate their own faces?
This podcast features Russ and Rui's review of the year in pop culture. Find out what they thought were the best films, music and books. Includes a review of the film Bohemian Rhapsody. Featured music by Broderick Smith and Kacey Musgraves.
Rui and Russ are back with the Swamp! It's the end of year review part one, featuring a round up of the year's most interesting news and stories, plus an honour roll of people who passed away, finishing with Russ's account of life as an activist for the Victorian Socialist party.. We're on a new platform in Spreaker, and we're excited!
Russ is doing the show solo again, but it's okay, coz he's committing acts of Anarchist direct action against bad books, praising the neologistic lyrics of James Reyne and the social justice passion of ACOSS's CEO, and yet more Hollies praise. There's also a weird Youtube clip of a monkey and a gun and a community service announcement for how to incorporate your enterprise in preparation for signing onto some crowdfunding aggregators. Music featured: The Hollies, Australian Crawl.
It's Russ solo again, delivering an 'interim' report about his various new adventures in pop culture. These include, a trip up Melbourne's Bourke St, wherein Russ encountered Died Pretty legend, Ron Peno, purchased a copy of the classic Emmylou Harris album The Ballad of Sally Rose, and a Steampunk book. Russ looks forward to the upcoming film of Mortal Engines, based on Philip Reeve's book, and takes a slightly pessimistic look at the state of today's politics, drawing coherent parallels with Lord of the Rings. Hmm, Trump as Sauron, the political left as Aragorn and his army storming the Black Gate of Mordor? Definitely! Featured music by Emmylou Harris and Koan.
Russ is on his own for this show, which gives him a chance to crap on about some of his favourites, like the Wizard of Oz, actress Jennifer Connelly, the Universal Basic Income, and the fact that he just celebrated a birthday, and God, God, God. Not that he's all that religious, but the subject comes up during his review of the Ridley Scott film, Alien Covenant. Russ comes out as a believer in a non-interventionist God. Which means he's not concerned by the ultimate randomness of life and the universe, because for him the meaning of life is all about the meaning that we bring to it as humans, and God doesn't have to have created life for a reason beyond the act of creation - we make the reason. And Russ thinks God feels the same way. He/She/It's standing back, marvelling at us and wondering what we'll do next - where are we going to take this amazing thing we call Life? The choice is ours...There's also reviews of the old Jim Henson film, Labyrinth, and the new Tomb Raider film, and a review of Joel Bakan's book The Corporation, which features some great ideas on how to de-fang that vampiric monster Capitalism. Music by XTC and Billy Thorpe. It's all about transitions...
Excerpt of Stephen Jolly, leader of the newly formed Victorian Socialists party, speaking at the recent Marxism Conference. Topics covered by this firebrand speaker include, Union strength, fighting anti union legislation, public housing, Fitzroy estate garden renovations, bin tax, and the east west tunnel protest. Join the campaign to get him and the Victorian Socialists elected in the coming state elections! https://www.facebook.com/vicsocialists/
Here it is, finally, Rui and Russ's review of the "Key Songs of the Seventies'. What made the cut; what didn't? Listen and find out - or go to our Swamp Blog at swampdpopculture.com and see the list. There's also a discussion of ABC journalist Emma Alberici's article criticising the Turnbull government's planned corporate tax cuts. The boys suggest vampire capitalism needs a stake driven through its heart. Problem is: does it have a heart? Russ also reviews the recent shindig at the Corner Hotel with local indie band Cable Ties, whose song Same For Me is featured.
Rui and Russ get a bit political today, with a review of Free Lunch Society, a film about the Universal Basic Income idea. Rui thinks it could be a hit out here in Australia if re-tagged the 'Ubeaut'. Russ reviews the latest Marvel comics movie, Black Panther and the boys delve into the socio-political ramifications of a 'black cinema'. Finally, Rus relates his day out during the recent International Womens Day, and in particular his reading of an amazing science fiction story by long unsung female writer, Mildred Clingerman. To quote Ursula - 'You Mt Saint Helenses...'
In this week's Swamp Russ visits the Sticky Institute, home of indie zines, where he bought a little pamphlet called 'Best Reads From My Goodreads', by Karys. It got him and Rui thinking about their best reads. Still on the bookish front, Russ has embarked upon the journey of reading Tolstoy's Anna Karenina, and he gives some sage advise about how to go about doing it (hint: it needs a run-up). The boys also dissect Murdoch paper The Herald/Sun's latest headline, which features the usual hot button topics covering local government, Aboriginals and the Anzac tradition. It doesn't take much to work out where the paper stands on those issues (a bit like shooting fish in a barrel, really). For the encore, the boys enthuse about Beatles contemporaries, The Hollies. The consensus is they were a singles band, but Russ in particular thinks their albums require a critical appraisal (note - not reappraisal, since they were never looked at in the first place!). A Hollies tune is then played.
Every now and again, in the course of doing the Swamp, Rui will throw in some random comment about his favourite pop troubadour and then go on about him forever and a day until it's hard to shut him up. And it's always just 'Bob'. No, we're not talking Seger, or even Bob the Builder - we're talking the Bob of the DYLAN variety here. I guess he just can't help himself. So, here are a couple of hopefully entertaining such digressions for all you Bob snobs out there. In case you're wondering about the context for these two pieces, I believe they happened during talk about writer Ursula Le Guin and pop band The Hollies. Enjoy!
It's the podcast segment from the Swamp Podcast that was too long, too esoteric and too damn self indulgent to keep in. Something had to go, so Russ the editor hacked away at it, editing RUTHlessly (think the last ten minutes of Harold and Maude). But we've added it here as a bootleg cult item with extra beer and bongwater for all you esoteric juicers and potheads. Expect talk about minimalism, transcendence, Russ's idea for a short story about life hacking and even some scientology (not that we endorse it). Just float on, man...
Rui is finally back on the show and giving it all he's got. The first 'proper' show for the year gets underway with a 'state of the Swamp' address from the boys outlining their aims to entertain, inspire, inform and transform the lives of listeners everywhere with their deep pop culture raps. Russ the media studies teacher says it's just organic media studies with a sugary pill. Rui gives a heartfelt tribute to Ms Ursula Le Guin, the boys talk more about life hacks, they lament the decline of chain store Video Ezy, and then there's a review of Hitchcock's Rear Window where Rui and Russ (or is that David and Margaret?) almost come to blows.
Russ is on his own again for this bumper fortieth edition of the Swamp. Russ considers cutting out areas of his pop culture consumption with life hacks, then talks about think tank fiction and its potential for evil propaganda. There are also reviews of films The Post, Streets of Fire and The Last Jedi. Music is provided by Goldfrapp and some retro tunes of the future from the game Bioshock Infinite. Russ also notes the sad passing of his favourite writer, Ursula Le Guin, and does a reading from his favourite Le Guin novel in tribute. RIP Ursula!
Russ goes it alone this week, talking mostly about books and book podcasts. Along the way there's a tribute to Ray Thomas of the Moody Blues, who died recently, plus an airing of one of Ray's Moodies songs. New Grover's Mill song Book Report Part Two also gets a go, while Russ reviews a book about Micheal Stipe (of REM), and talks about coincidences and offers some dangerous ideas. Russ also checks out some podcasts dedicated to books , and delves into last year's controversy around Lani Sarem's book, Handbook For Mortals. Mmm...are you deFriend or are you deFoe?
Here's the second part of our review of the year 2017. Rui and Russ cover films, books and music, with a little detour into talk about Goodreads and other book sites. Big winners are Blade Runner 2049 and The Disaster Artist in films, Goldfrapp and Underground Lovers in music, and Andy Weir and Neil Degrasse Tyson in books. Music by Tulp and Blankts, care of Soundcloud.
Here's the show that's so big it had to be split into two parts. In this part one of the Swamp's review of the year Rui and Russ talk about the best and worst news items, with a focus on Australian political happenings. They also give their roundup of the best of television for the year. Rui and Russ also relive their youth with a digression about favourite cartoon shows, with some classic theme tunes featured. That inveterate list maker, Russ, also reviews Lisa Nola's Listography book. The boys also finally get around to reviewing the film Blade Runner 2049. Both agree it's better than the original! The magpies outside their studio window seem to agree...
Co-host Russ has finally released his new science fiction novel Eye of the Timegate and he can't wait to tell everyone about it. So, in this podcast, Rui and Russ talk about the publishing of Eye of the Timegate, and all that palaver. Topics covered include advice about small publishers, cover artists, working with Create Space for the ‘hard copy’, editors, Smashwords versus Amazon, ebook versus hard copy and many others. To break the monotony, the boys also share their list of Best Time Travel Novels of All Time. What Russ's novel is doing in that list, we don't know, but it's there!
We've finally tracked down the great lost podcast #34, wherein a solo Russ gives us an overview of his favourite band, the Kinks, introduces us to 'fun things to do with your dvds' (featuring the Ridley Scott film The Duellists and TV's Buffy), and relates the strange tale of the record with a bullet hole in it. Glen Campbell is given a sendoff, and that weasel Greg Sheridan is given a spray for his weasely comments on The Drum. Music by the Kinks and Elton John.
After an extended hiatus the boys are back and as full of new adventures in pop culture as ever. Russ relates tales of his brother's bad habit of buying dodgy crap from mail order magazines, and of an encounter with a beautiful woman on a train carrying something unusual under her arm. Rui then extemporises upon the phenomenon of TV advertising channels and ever more dodgy (and dangerous) takeaway delivery jobs. Russ rants about Malcolm Turnbull's latest gaff in being unable to name a single AC/DC song, and does a riff on how politicians and media people are out of touch with the general public. Rui then builds up a head of steam dissecting the latest rounds of political idiocies, including the citizenship fiasco, the wage freeze and unpaid overtime, and comes up with an ingenious application for the recent gay marriage Yes vote referendum. The boys then enthuse about the recent documentary, Right Here, about that classic Australian band, the Go Betweens. Music by the Gobs, including The Obsessed and AC/DC (RIP Malcolm) is featured.
In this episode Rui provides the usual 'braniac food' for the listeners with an enlightening talk highlighting reportage from Zeitgeist member Abby Martin about the distorted right wing media coverage of the situation in Venezuela. As usual, it's up to Russ to bring the fun by crapping on about The Beatles, especially Sir Paul's upcoming Australia tour, and a review of Pattie Boyd's book Wonderful Tonight, which dishes the dirt on George Harrison and Eric Clapton. The lads also chat about recent episodes of Rage, featuring Cleopatra Wong, the Go Betweens side project. Mmm, something is happening, but you don't know what it is...
In this episode Russ expounds upon why the Beach Boys' story is the greatest in rock n roll. Last year's Coen Brothers film, Hail Ceasar, is given another look, and there is yet another gratuitous plug for Russ's new science fiction time travel novel, Eye of the Timegate. For light relief, the lads peruse the Lost Consonants book. 'He was drawn to religion by the prospect of immorality...'
Russ and Rui (yes, he's back!) get arty farty with talk about TV arts show The Mix and a review of the recent Van Gogh exhibition by Rui.. Russ reviews new TV games show Screen Play, and talks zines and an encounter with a favourite musician that slightly freaked him out. Listen to find out why!
Russ is again going it solo in this our 30th podcast. This one's for those with musical taste, because it's mainly about that man Bob Dylan as Russ reviews Clinton Heylin's book about him, 'Revolution In the Air'. There are Bob revelations galore, including where Bob got the title for Rainy Day Women from, and some Bob rarities are played. But there's also some more Dr Who talk and Russ shares his enthusiasm for writer Ursula Le Guin with a reading and a play of the Grover's Mill song Book Report, which name checks her.
With Rui a bit fluey, Russ bravely soldiers on solo with the show. First, there's a consumer service announcement (ie, rant) about Canon's shitty print cartridges, then timely rap about media bias, featuring a reading from an unreleased Swamp article. Russ then reviews the recent Underground Lovers concert he attended. In short: they were great, but the crowd weren't so great. Then there's a review of new TV show Vinyl, set in the music industry of New York 1973. Russ also plays some rare Underground Lovers live he has in his collection. All in all, not bad, considering there's no Rui. Get well soon, mate!
Russ is largely solo for this one while Rui departs for a rumoured crafty spliff. This gives Russ the chance to talk about Eric Berne's book Games People Play. Said to be one of the very first 'self help' books (but don't hold that against it), Russ finds much wisdom and learning in it. Russ then segues naturally to the singer and songwriter Joe South, whose famous (and Grammy Award-winning) song Games People Play is said to have been inspired by Berne's book. Many classic Joe South songs are played, and Rui joins Russ at the end for something of a group singalong. How's about a game of 'Pop culture nerd'?
Russ and Rui start off this podcast with a very Zen adventure in pop culture at a supermarket. Are you eating apples or junk food? Rui gets all angsty in his review of new TV show 13 Reasons Why. Russ just feels the pain with his review of The Walking Dead, season six. He also wonders about fake spoilers and why doesn't Donald Trump do something about them? Rui then presents some egghead theories from that rich brat Alon Musk and details the scifi possibilities of human thoughts connected to cybernetics. Finally, feeling a new lease on life, and clutching his shiny new (and red vinyl) copy of Space Oddity, a cancer-free Russ relates his recent visit to Heartland Records and enumerates the many reasons he loves the Beach Boys and David Bowie. Expect tunes from those artistes.
Russ and Rui go slightly beatnik this week with Russ's beatnik playlist and review of the book Beatsville, found at the salubrious Outre Gallery in Melbourne. There's also a review of Goldfrapp's new album, Silver Eye, and the boys have fun with Chinglish. Featured music is by Jack Kerouac and Captain Beefheart. Sounds pretty far out to me, man!
Russ and Rui's adventures in pop culture take them to Dr Who and the TARDIS (or, is that the TURDIS?), and the Rage couch, where they have a go as guest programmers of the show. Well, in theory - the guys cite some of the clips they would present if they had the chance. It's mostly inspired by seeing Vince and Glenn of the Underground Lovers hosting the show and seeing the superlative choices they made. There's also some discussion about the latest news events, including the Fairfax journaist strike and Yassmin Abdul-Magied's recent controversial comments criticising the Anzac narrative and the attendant right wing backlash at the ABC. Oh no!
Here it is: the segment that was too big to fit into our regular Swamp podcast. It's the best and worst of all things Star Wars and all things Peter Jackson's Hobbit movies. Two film franchises, two sets of trilogies, it's a good time, a conversation starter. Russ and Rui pretend they're in a pub, crapping on something shocking. Expect there to be fights, expect there to be blood - especially when the talk gets around to elf-babe Tauriel and that elf-dwarf romance with Kili. We hear the Goblin King's breakout smash hit Down Down Down In Goblin Town (no, not a Status Quo song). Russ also gives a quick preview of his three and a half hour edit of Desolation of Smaug and Battle of Five Armies as one film. Hint: Radagast and those f---ing rabbits are gone!
In this episode Russ talks about some recent adventures in pop culture, including an account of a celebrity cricket match featuring the Stranglers and Kate Bush (she was the 'opening pair'). Also, his discovery of a bourbon and coke drink called Ned sparks off a social political/historical rant from Rui, ending in an airing of the old Redgum song, Poor Ned. Elsewhere, Russ enthuses over the latest season of Dr Who and new discussion show Whovians. It being Anzac Day time, the boys also discuss the media's obsession with war, and its almost complete apathy towards the more religious aspects of Easter. For the books segment, Russ and Rui discuss Buffy and Philosophy. Russ introduces the Platonic concept of Eudaimonism, and quickly re-dubs it 'Undemonism' in the spirit of Buffy.
This action packed episode includes a book about French film-maker Jean Luc Godard, a profile of 'cult author' the Marquis de Sade, and reviews of the recent Scarlett Johansson film, Ghost In the Shell, and the Ken Loach documentary, Versus. Your hosts Russ and Rui also attended the Marxism Conference and give their impressions. Comedian John Clarke is also given a sendoff.
This is our special Best Albums of the Eighties edition. In fact, it's a bit everything about the eighties, from politics to fashion, as Russ and Rui reminisce about that decade (since they're actually old enough to have lived through it). Russ gives his own personal list of what are for him the Ten Best 80s albums, and Rui considers a few of his own. So what were they? Well, you'll just have to listen to find out!
First up in this podcast, Rui reviews child-centred learning with the Future Schools program. The upcoming Marxism Conference is then promoted, with Rui and Russ especially looking forward to the documentary about film-maker Ken Loach. For light relief, Russ then checks out some more of the books that have come across his desk at his op shop job. They include The Rough Guide to Cult Fiction, Jeanette Winterson's Written On the Body, James M Cain's The Postman Always Rings Twice (two very different cult authors right there!), and Alain de Botton's philosophical pop culture scree Status Anxiety. For even more light relief, Rui gets Jane Austen confused with either Emily Bronte or Emily Dickinson. How he does it, I don't know!
This week Rui reviews the film Thirteenth and discusses the Black Lives Matter issue. Russ takes us way back for a review of the old Jean Renoir film The Crime of Monsieur. Both swampsters then expound upon the issue of co-operatives, featured in that film. Russ then reviews the book Big Bosoms and Square Jaws, a biography of 'commando film-maker' Russ Meyers, with a particular focus on Faster Pussycat Kill Kill. Russ then talks about his recent attendance at the Box Hill Record Fair, where things got very swampy indeed. Two of his purchases, the Paul McCartney album Chaos and Creation, and Nick Drake's Born To Love Magic are then reviewed by an enthusiastic Russ. The boys then visit the Inspire portal for a look at the David Bowie song You Feel So Lonely You Could Die, which Bowie seemed to suggest might make a fitting prologue to Ziggy Stardust. Chuck Berry is then given a sendoff. Chuck, you were only 90, we hardly knew ye.
This week Russ finally comes clean about his volunteer job sorting the books at a well-known Melbourne op shop franchise. Rui teases out the socio-political ramifications of it all, including Russ's surprise confession that he seethes with resentment at the landlord who profits off his volunteer labour. But it's not all bad, since Russ gets to buy a plethora of toothsome books at a very reasonable price (he prices them himself!) and he proceeds to give a rundown in this podcast of some of his 'poichases'. They include Minipops (famous people drawn real small), The Portable Jung (edited by Joseph Campbell), Lords of Chaos (Scandinavian heavy metal church burning and murder), People Before Profit (kindly capitalist bequeaths his business to his workers) and a massive games walkthrough for Mass Effect 3. Russ reflects on cybersex and his failure to get his femme Shep character a date (much like his own life, really).
After two weeks away, Rui and Russ are excited to report on the inaugural Democracy At Work Melbourne meeting, wherein the guys discuss proposals made and problems encountered. Then Russ regales with the story of his recent day in Melbourne where he attended Community Radio station 3RRR's 40th Anniversary exhibition at the State Library, among other pursuits. The lads finish off with a round up of coming pop culture items of interest, including the latest season of Vikings, Adam Savage's Tested program, and the new Alien Covenant and Ghost In the Shell films. There's also some talk about the new Swamp blog initiative: Swamp Radio. Oh, Russ also talks about some of his 'poichases' made during his day in Melbourne. FYI they include a Buffy graphic novel and a Sixties Australian garage rock compilation. Rui merely plays with his dinghy...
This week Rui and Russ go all slacker with reviews of Richard Linklater’s film Everybody Wants Some and the book Growing Up Absurd by Paul Goodman. Linklater's first feature, Slacker, is also discussed, and Russ, in particular, identifies. Also, the lads talk enthusiastically about them well-known slackers Camp Cope and their new song Keep Growing, and those not so well-known slackers The Going Away Party, and their song Bogan Rhapsody is aired. Party on, dudes!
This week Rui and Russ get that old viking spirit, because during his holidays at Golden Beach Rui watched the first season of the Vikings TV show, and Russ, busy babysitting his sister's cat, caught up with season four of Star Trek Enterprise. Where's the viking connection between those two, you ask? Well, Russ reckons them wacky Klingons are a bit like space vikings. Meanwhile, Rui, in warm agreement with Russ, examines the socio-political and anthropological ramifications of life in tenth century Norway, as lived by Ragnar and his cohorts. For Russ, the fourth and final season of Enterprise was a lot of fun the way it connected the dots to TOS Star Trek. He especially liked the ingenious explanation for why TOS's Klingons had those smooth foreheads. Russ then returns to an old heavy metal magazine he used to read, called Terrorizer. He finds the scene has moved on a little since ten years ago (the last time he picked up a copy), with women very much in the ascendant, like the Viking shieldmaidens of old. The Viking spirit lives on!
Rui and Russ take you back to the halcyon years of the late fifties and early sixties with Behind the Rock, a book by Leon Isaakson and Jon Hayter. Leon and Jon recount their crazy days as members of The Rajahs, once known as 'the Australian Beatles'. It is a tale of sex, rock n roll, Vietnam and Johnny O'Keefe.
Our Prog meets Dylan meets Cowboys podcast. Russ admits to his prog rock tendencies with a review of Yes' Tales of Topographic Oceans, while Rui accuses him of recanting his punk credentials. The prog connection continues with a tribute to the recently departed Greg Lake of Emerson, Lake and Palmer (and early King Crimson). The boys then come back to the ground with a belated review of Bob Dylan's Freewheelin' (it's only been over fifty years since its release - what took you so long!). Getting even more down and dirty, Russ then talks about the curious Audie Murphy film, Posse From Hell. Rui mistakes Audie for Gene Autry! Yeeehah!
The guys review the film Passengers. Russ reckons he could handle living an entire lifetime aboard a runaway spaceship with Jennifer Lawrence (he's not sure if she could though!). Then it's time for another film review: this time, Ken Loach's I Daniel Blake. Russ declares it a good film, but depressing as hell. He doesn't advise it for a Saturday date. After the Loach film, Russ needed some fun, so he headed off to the Old Bar in Fitzroy and caught some bands, Parsnip and Lazertits. It was a good time!
Like everyone, we do the year in review, including tributes to the year's many fallen. Best music, films (including a list of films we want to see but missed) and TV. Russ even asks ‘What is TV?’ and Rui provides a coherent answer. Including a review of the new Walking Dead prequel, Fear the Walking Dead. Although he liked it, Russ is not impressed with the acting. Then Rui gives a talk about a book called Four Futures by Peter Frase. If he’s right about where we are going, all we can say is, beware Exterminism, the fourth future Frase cites!
Whilst enjoying a holiday beer (or three), Russ the pop culture dilettante tells Rui of leafing through a newsagent’s shelves, avoiding the pornos in favour of a copy of Vintage Rock mag, which sparks off a riff on the future (or not) of hard copy magazines. Russ then peruses the contents of his new purchase, which features a cover of the Beach Boys, and indulges in his list of ‘Best American Bands’, testing Rui to come up with his own. Then there’s a subtle segue to the Rolling Stones and a talk about the early music mail order businesses of Nashville as detailed by the salubrious Randy Fox in his article in Vintage Rock, ‘The glory days of music by mail’. Rui reads some excerpts and both podcasters speculate with awe how this may have marked the actual birth of rock n roll. Next, the history of community radio station 3RRR, now enjoying its fortieth anniversary, is discussed, in particular the year 1988, its ‘year of chaos’. Russ regales Rui with his account of his days as a graveyard shift dj on the station in the 1980s. Legendary RRR station manager and dj, Stephen Walker, and his trials staying on air whilst struggling with his MS, are also enumerated. The show finishes off with an enthusiastic review of Sydney duo Moonsign and their fabulous EP If You Go.
Rui and Russ get quite 'bookish' this week, with reviews of two books, one by Quentin Beresford (who?) and the other, a prophetic novel from 1935 by Sinclair Lewis. So, put on your reading glasses, grab a smoking pipe and settle in. But it's not all intellectual: the lads also enjoyed the recent Robert Forster gig at the Gaslight and a review of said gig is included. But then again, there was something about a book involved in that one too, come to think of it...Russ got his copy of Robert's Grant And I signed by the man himself, and had a good chat with him. Good times! A fabulous new conferencing app for would be radicals, called Loomio, is also discussed.
Rui and Russ start off this week's podcast with a review of the film Arrival, with both enjoying its slow burn mystery and unusual take on Close Encounters. Russ then looks at Media Watch's end of year review of the year in media. A show on the media that criticises the media. What a concept!
Looking for gems on Channel 32 Gem, Russ finally gets to see the film Devil Girl From Mars and finds it disappointing. Russ wanted kitschy fun with a hot young Devil Girl in a cute outfit, but got a stolid British drama instead. Game of Thrones season 5 is then reviewed. Yes, it's so last year, but that's how we roll sometimes! How much for your little clam? Russ salutes Lena Heady’s brave naked performance during ‘the walk’. Shame! Rui, as is his want, teases out the Tolkien connections and socio-political ramifications of the coming seasons. Punky all-girl Melbourne band Lazertits (gotta love that name) is then featured, with the song Gender Studies highlighted. In the ongoing rock star obituary series, Russell tells Rui Leon Russell died, also Sharon Jones of the Dap Kings. Russ clutches his original Leon single of Tightrope on the RCA Shelter label, and enthuses over the song (and even sings a few bars), a real flash back to the seventies for him. "Like a rubber-necked giraffe..."
The Year of the Underdog
Donald Trump has just been elected and Rui and Russ, like most people, can’t believe it. So necessarily they felt the need to talk about it. Russ asserts the more important happening this week was the death of Leonard Cohen, which triggers yet another tribute, and a Grover’s Mill tune that references Cohen is played. Thinking about Trump, the Chicago Cubs, the Western Bulldogs, Rui identifies this as ‘the year of the Underdog’. Russ laments the San Francisco Giants’ failure to keep their streak going, but accepts the Cubs deserved their World Series win. Online digital publishing and sites like Smashwords are then discussed off the back of Russ’s latest attempts to get published in that arena, and Rui cites the amazing stat that sales of digital books superseded hard print copies last year. Russ then shares his (and director Nicholas Myer’s) thoughts about Star Trek’s Wrath of Khan, and renews his crush on ‘the young, short-haired Shirley McLaine’ with the old Billy Wilder film The Apartment.
Rui and Russ celebrate as the podcast finally officially goes live. Russ then starts us off with his plan to release bits of his Timegate novel as short stories, beginning with the Butterfly Breeze. If you could go back in time and save John Lennon from Mark Chapman, would you? Russ has done some research on the Kindle Scout program, joining the reader program with a view to maybe submit something. Intrigued by one novel, War of the Worlds Retaliation by Paul Gardner (out now on Amazon), he decides to sponsor it (it didn’t get picked up, but check it out on Amazon). Then there’s a review of The Music Goes Round My Head by David Johnston, about Australian pop from 1964 to 1970. Russ reports it’s available for free (plus postage) because it’s apparently not selling, and he can’t believe it. Whilst on the sixties vibe, the boys wax lyrical about singer Toni McCann and the legendary Normie Rowe. Russ shares his story of meeting Normie last year. It was an awkward encounter!
First off Rui and Russ share their psychological problems and go deep into the Swamp with an outline of the four portals to be found on the Swamp blog. There’s Entertain, Inspire, Inform, and deepest of all, Transform. Not to be confused with portaloos. Then Russ rants about his new science fiction novel (ho hum) and his travails in getting it published. Next, it’s a long section on music, and Mazzy Star’s fairly recent album Seasons of Your Day is reviewed (Rui gets it confused with Massive Attack, and Russ laughs until he croaks). Then Russ enthuses over another recent purchase, Underground Lovers’ Infinite Finite, their last album, and asks the musical question: did you know Vince was a social worker? Then, the boys get retro with a talk about the old 10CC album Deceptive Bends and the revival of vinyl. Russ discusses his edit of Feel the Benefit and informs us about the new app for record collectors, Vinyldistrict, because that’s the sort of obsessive (read sad) type he is. Still on the 10CC vibe, Russ then craps on about the Godley and Crème videos (remember Cry, and An Englishman In New York?), and the amazing songs of the 60s by Graham Gouldman. Can you name them all? Finally, local all-girl band Crop Top’s great punky song Janine gets a play, and Rui enthuses how, against the old industry fears, online music platforms are coming along.
Rui and Russ: reaching out to people with psychological problems.
For this podcast Russ talks at length about the Gene Kelly musical An American In Paris, whilst Rui as usual tries to tease out the socio-political ramifications of America’s presence in France and other irrelevancies. The boys then enthuse over new TV show Rosehaven, and gaze lovingly at an online photo of the ‘beautiful’ Luke McGregor. Russ then reviews the recent Lacuna Coil concert at Max Watts, and provides a public service announcement about Melbourne’s excellent late night train service. He also instructs Rui in how to properly perform the European Lacuna Coil chant. Jason Charles Button’s Soundcloud song about Donald Trump is aired – and yes, the evidence is there, we also got the election result very wrong.
Ole, Ole-Ole-Ole…Lacuuuuuuuuuna Coil!
The lads start this podcast with Russ’s review of the Beatles movie Eight Days A Week, which he saw recently. Then, after a lively discussion of the Soundcloud, Bandcamp and Spotify platforms, Russ reminisces about singer Steve (Romeo’s Tune) Forbert and an obscure b-side from Steve is played. Next, Rui gives us the lowdown on his Lismel books site. Then Russ discusses the origins and inspiration for his Grover’s Mill song Staring Into the FIre, which also gets an airing. Then the trials and tribulations of making a Machinima type music video is discussed.
Hey, we’re back! Russ reviews Chris Anderson’s The Long Tail, which inspires Rui to go off on a rant about aggregators and ‘Suckerbergs’. But Russ insists it’s all about niches and time. Then Russ talks about Robert Forster’s book Grant and I and illicitly reads some excerpts. A couple of Grover’s Mill tunes are heard, and for films the Decline of Western Civilization documentaries (by Penelope Spheeris) are reviewed. We also belatedly give tribute to that man David Bowie.
For podcast number two we go deep with a talk from Rui about TED (not just an interesting episode of Buffy featuring John Ritter) and the Blockchain/Bitcoin phenomenon, and DonTapscott. He also reviews one of Richard Wolff’s latest lectures on a similar theme. “The only solution lies outside of the system”. As usual, it’s Russ who provides the lighter stuff, including a review of Maureen ‘Marcia Brady’ McCormick’s book Here’s the Story, and he looks forward to the upcoming Lacuna Coil concert at Max Watts’ in the city. Rui and Russ then both have fun reviewing the Star Wars Cookbook by Lara Star (is that her real name?) with all them wacky recipe names. Anyone for Millenium Fal-cone Pie or Chewie Chocolate Cheesecake Pops? Stick around to the end when Rui admits he used to be called Yoda. Al (Grandpa Munster) Lewis provides the music with his wonderfully creepy rendition of the ABC Song.