Black Cab – Yak ye

In Ukrainian, there is a simple saying ‘Yak ye’ – ‘as is’ or, ‘it is what it is’. That’s Pripyat and Chernobyl now. It just is.

Black Cab are an interesting, progressive band from Melbourne, Vic., whose albums centre around themes or concepts, the Altamont Speedway Free Concert, the drugged-up, drugged-out 21st Olympics, and so on. Only a few of their sounds have made it to vinyl.

So, I’ve made a 1-off, just-for-me vinyl pressing of eight BC tracks I’ve never found on record, primarily because I doubt they even exist in that format. ‘Christlike’ I got in a computer magazine mp3 sampler, ‘Senses wild’ is a digital-only release, and ‘Untitled’ was a gem of a live performance, for example. I’ve bought the CDs, records where available, digital downloads – this is me picking my favourites, and glossy-sleeving them up onto transparent 12″ vinyl.

With some very basic audio checking for dropping-onto-vinyl, and some sleeve and label artwork (photo credits acknowledged), we have ‘Yak ye’… a Chernobyl concept album of sorts, expertly-lathed in Poland (land of the Warsaw Girls). You can get most of Black Cab’s music through reasonably-priced digital downloads, and I’d encourage you to do that. In fact, their latest single ‘Take It’ is available (here).

‘Yak ye’ track listing:

A1. Uniforms / A2. Church in Berlin / A3. Christlike / A4. Warsaw girls

B1. Underground Star (2007) /B2. Senses wild / B3. Untitled (live) / B4. Black angel

The Jesus and Mary Chain – F.T.O.

Further to the series of artists’ tracks that rarely if ever made it to 180gm, super-delicious vinyl – we come to the Jesus and Mary Chain, which some people (not I) describe as the aural equivalent of eating broken glass. Tsk, tsk. This one is entitled “F.T.O.”, again made from Greg in Polska. He does a great job. As usual, artwork is almost entirely done by me, though the picture of the Reid brothers is an adaption of a watercolour feature in Double-J, which was from a photo somewhere else.

Suggestion: prize of 1,000 kittens to whoever can decipher what “F.T.O.” means.

Cabaret Voltaire – The LP that never was

Making records is addictive, and not nearly as bad for you as, say, cocaine, attempting Deadpool stunts, that kind of thing. This one I’ve just completed (called “Flux”) is half a dozen tracks that mostly never made it to vinyl, so I helped them there, with some artwork and a helpful guy from Poland (shout out to Greg).



Here’s the sister (or brother) record to Iridescent – “Evanescent”. This record contains the other tracks I love, that haven’t made it to vinyl over all these years. Being lathed as you read this! Well, not if you read it in 2020, it will have been done by then. This particular lathing is limited to a massive two (2) copies. Then, it’s on to the Cabaret Voltaire one, the Mary Chain one, the Certain Ratio one…


A magnificent and talented group I like (the Durutti Column) stopped producing material on vinyl in 1994, leaving it from there on to the confines of 5-inch CDs. Since I enjoy my vinyl, I decided to design a cover and labels, and make a record of my favourite not-yet-vinylised-tracks (I own the CDs of the material, and this is a one-off for private use). I also had to learn some of the artistry around mastering for vinyl. Fun!

This is record 1 of a two record set – the first one is “Iridescent”, the second one to come is “Evanescent”. Nice with a G&T on an autumn afternoon.

True Grit

I think they should make a movie on how tough it’s been on the Australian cricketers at the moment, how they’re holding up etc. Maybe starring Russell Crowe, and perhaps call it “True Grit”.

Number 02: We welcome orchids into our home

We orchid enthusiasts welcome the little green fellows into their home, occasionally and somewhat at the expense of other inhabitants…


Magnetic fields, redux

The “Magnetic Fields” cartoon on this blog looks very familiar 😉 Bonus, the authors had the good manners to request permission to use it before doing so. Credit!

Been busy!

Half the year’s gone. The older I get, the faster they go. Here’s a cartoon I thought I’d do for the American Orchid Society (daughter likes growing them). If they’re keen, I’ll do one every month. Something a little different from electronics and beer brewing!


rebootSo, 2016 didn’t turn out that flash. Separation, earthquakes, Brexit, Trump, and movie and music stars falling like, er, falling stars. 2017 promises to be better, right? And what better way to start it, than with brew #31, a hoppy, summery APA that says “Re-boot”. Actually, it doesn’t say that, because beer that talked would be ridiculous, although interesting. Cheers to 2017. How about some good news, aye Don?

New dawn! – Fish #100 of 100

p_fish_100Here’s the final fish in the set of 100 – the New Dawn fish (Dawnus novae (var. Re-boot)). What’s happened has happened. That was that. It was what it was. Moving on. Drawn a line under it. Time to re-boot, re-start, etc. You get the message 🙂

Anyway, this is the last fish in the set. You can get it on T-shirts and drinkware here. Keep an eye out for a post in the next few days – the whole 100 fish will be available on a big A2, colour, high-quality, very high resolution poster so all fish can be seen in great detail!