There was a death in the family on Friday. My laptop. It showed signs on Thursday, but struggled on through the night. I pushed my (last) post into place - a few favourite 'drum' albums. And then shortly after - it was goodnight. For good.
I hit that thing pretty hard - however long you are supposed to get out of a laptop I halve it; I reckon I go at it about twice as much as your average user. That's a guess, nothing more. But it seems like it could be about right. Anyway, that last computer lived with us for twice as long as the one before - and if anything it worked even harder; I had been on that laptop for the entire time that Off The Tracks has been happening as something of an auxiliary to this daily blog. So that's more than twice as many posts for that dearly departed computer.
And I wrote a book on that computer too. I had almost forgotten....
Anyway. Computers die. They drop. They stop. And I had a wonderful day on Friday - couldn't do any work and wasn't - really - supposed to. So I just enjoyed my time with the tiny, strutting dictator that runs our house. We listened to Beatles CDs in his room, read books and wandered in the winter sun. It was, of course, far better than rushing out reviews and rants. And then it was to a long weekend away. The death of the laptop certainly didn't mean a thing - not when there's the chance to meet the newest member of the family; my seven-week old niece.
I'm back trying to catch up though now - and it's a busy, busy week, the Jazz Festival comes to town at the end of the week, Brant Bjork is here tomorrow night (should be a great gig) and I'm most certainly behind, work-wise. So I'll do my best.
Still getting used to the borrowed/new machine too.
So all I really wanted to do today was tell you that you really should check out the new album by Roddy Frame. It's been my favourite this last week or so. Well, I've had it to listen to for a little bit longer than that but I've only recently reviewed it. It's certainly my favourite right now.
I've always known of Roddy Frame/Aztec Camera - and though I own a couple of albums already I couldn't ever say I was anything approaching a fan. I knew he was talented, I respected his ability as a song craftsman - but it wasn't ever a sound I sought; nothing to spend a lot of time around.
But the new album is pretty wonderful; it reminds me of Billy Bragg's last album (which I loved) and of the very best of Neil Finn's solo material (across all three of his solo albums to date). It might be that I'm at the right age and stage to sit down with this sort of album. That's probably very much the case. And maybe you are not. But I just wanted to mention it - check it out. Some very fine songwriting there.
Meanwhile, I'm off to start catching up...something I've been doing my whole life of course...
Oh, and in keeping with that whole idea of when somebody (or something) dies a new arrival takes their place...meet the latest gadget to come into my life. (Watch this space...or, er, listen as it were...)
You can also check out Off the Tracks for The Vinyl Countdown, reviews and other posts