Saturday, 24 September 2016

The Feather And The Filthiest Room Ever.

 The first time somebody mentioned The Hard to me my immediate reaction was "Sounds a bit alarming. why would I want to go there?"  I had this mental image of some sort of nature reserve for feral skinheads.
  As it turned out, The Hard  is what Portsmouth calls the bit down by the Dockyard where the Gosport Ferry terminal , the Portsmouth Harbour Rail station and the Bus station sit right next to each other. I think it's called The Hard because it's a sort of concrete platform built out over the waves. It's not as picturesque as it sounds but it gets the job done.
 There used to be a really good bacon butty stand  down there - until it caught fire.

   The reason I bring all this up is that at one end of The Hard there's a couple of things that fascinate me.

  As the Portsmouth Harbour rail line heads off towards the city centre it runs over a solidly built bit of Victorian brickwork which has handy little rooms built under the arches.  There's a cafe that I keep meaning to check out and a tattoo parlour that I'm too chicken to set foot in. It's what's next to them I'm looking at today.

 The first thing you see is one of the many bits of wall-art I like about Pompey.

portsmouth The Hard art

  That's a nice bit of art. I'm all in favour of making blank bits of wall a little prettier and this is simple and effective. If anybody knows who painted this feather, I'd love a chance to give them a shout-out.

 But if you move a wee bit to the left you get something that intrigues me for all the wrong reasons.

  Right next door is a shop or  lockup or whatever that has been abandoned and boarded up for donkey's years.  Then one day somebody put the window in and that left this lovely, big hole in the wall with a lovely, big empty space on the other side.

 Hundreds of people walk past this hole every single day.  Hundreds of people clutching sandwiches, cans of Red Bull, newspapers, kebabs....

 Can you guess what happens when they pass this lovely, inviting hole?

This happens. 

Room full of trash

 Believe it or not, this pile used to be bigger. At one point there was a frigging Christmas Tree stuffed in there.  Don't ask me how, or what happened to it.

 You'll have to take my word about the smell.  It's like three dustbins full of socks.

  Just up the road from that was one more thing - now gone, sadly -  that fascinated me for yet a third reason. If the feather is pleasing and the room is disgusting then this billboard just puzzled me.


 Somebody spent a lot of money to put up this huge public message  so you think there would be a contact address or something on it. Nope. Just a slogan that screams "Tinfoil hat" to me.

 If anybody knows what the actual fuck this is all about, can you drop me a line?

That's all folks. 

Monday, 19 September 2016

Cheapo DVD Review: The Cottage (2008)

British Comedy/Slasher Horror starring Andy Serkis, Jennifer Ellison, Reece Shearsmith & Steve O'Donnell

   Two brothers arrive at a cottage out in the rural wilds, along with the young woman that's tied up in the boot. 

  The plan is to hold their unwilling guest for ransom but there are a few snags.  Like at least one of the conspirators being a complete moron.  Like their victim being a vicious psycho with a big-time gangster for a father.  

And most especially, that they picked entirely the wrong part of the countryside to visit. 

  The Cottage starts off as a comedy caper movie about a bungled kidnapping and if it had stayed that way it would have been a decent enough movie.  But about halfway through it suddenly moves into Texas Chainsaw Massacre territory, albeit darkly comic and set in Yorkshire. 

 Luckily it works, and the cast can be thanked for that as they all turn in a great job. I particularly liked the way Andy Serkis performed as the only sensible man dealing with his useless co-conspirators. Jennifer Ellison was also perfect as the kidnapped Chavette From Hell. 
  The tone switches easily between bloody slashings and broad humour and even manages to fit in a bit of character development between squabbling brothers David and Peter. 

  If I had a criticism, it would be that The Cottage maybe takes longer than it needed to for setting things up. That's probably just me. 

How much did I pay for this: £1.50
Was it worth it?  Very much so. If you liked Severance then you may well want to keep an eye out for The Cottage next time you hit CEX. 

That's All Folks. 

Sunday, 18 September 2016

The Metal Project: O is For Overdrive

Songs with metal in the title.

   A few years back I set out to see how many songs I could find which had "Metal" in the title and as it turns out there was hundreds of the bloody things with more arrving every day.

  By the time you've finished reading this sentence, a band in a garage somewhere has just written a song called "Metal Avenger". You never know. Maybe it will end up on here.

Moving on to business, today's selection is brought to you by the letter  O.  Enjoy.

Oker - Heavy Metal (Spain 2013)

Oldschool HM with duelling male & female vocals.
Sung in Spanish which really suits the song.

Honour to: Ladamadechapa

Obsessör - Metal Onslaught (Germany 2009)

Black/Thrash that puts a brick on the accelerator and goes for it.

Honour to: AlcoholicMayhem

Orion's Sword - Crusade Of Heavy Metal (Sweden 1984)

(Very NWOBHM in style and approach - but Swedish)

 Honour to: Endless Of Classic Stuff

Overdrive - Let The Metal do The Talking (Sweden 2008)

(HM that's crunchy but still catchy.)

Honour to: El Trono Del Metal

OldBlood - Metal is Metal (Slovakia 2010)

(Black/Thrash that doesn't hang about.()

 Honour to: ForcesReturn

Omega- Metal From Hell (Greece 2013)

(Venomesque Black/Speed Metal.)

Honour to: SabbathDoom

And lastly, one where I'm not entirely sure about the title.

The original is in Russian/Cyrillic so I'm banking on the uploader getting it right.

Old Wainds - Unholy Nordic Metal (Russia 2011)

(Guess what they sound like. Go on. )

Honour to: Datura Dixie

That's All Folks. 

Sunday, 11 September 2016

The Metal Project: N Is For Nocturnal

Metal songs about metal

   Hello everyone and welcome to another installment of my ongoing quest to find and post every song with "Metal" in the title that Youtube has to offer. Today we're up to the Letter N.

  Somehow I don't think the word "Nice" is going to make an appearance.

Nocturnal Witch - Metal Soldier (Germany 2012)

(Black/Thrash at breakneck speed)

Honour to: MAOT666

Nasty Disaster - Play Some Fucking Metal  (USA 2014)

(A band that's not entirely serious.
Well, I think they're taking the piss. It's hard to tell sometimes.)

Honour to: Victor Roland

Necromessiah - Christ-Crushing Black Metal (Italy 2007)

(Punky Black Metal that dislikes Christianity quite a lot.)

Honour to: MentalHolocaust

Nocturnal Rites - Shield of Golden Metal (Sweden 1993)

(From a demo cassette, hence the potato quality. 
The band sound quite different at this early stage but still have some cool lead guitar bits going on .)

Honour to: MetalAvenger1978

Nightwolf - Heavy Metal Slut (Malaysia 2012)

(Japanese style Punky Speed Metal FFO Abigail and Sabbat)

Honour to: 666SpeedHell

Nevaloth - Blasphemous Metal (Slovakia 2010)

("Atmospheric Black Metal" according to Metal Archives.)

Honour to: Divinvs Invernvs

Nuit Noire - Faerie Metal (France 2015)

(Metal continues to surprise me. 
A Metal band singing about fairies isn't that much of a stretch but a Black Metal band doing concept albums about the Fair Folk?
Who saw that coming?

Honour to: ZZ

That's all folks.

Wednesday, 7 September 2016

More Swords And Chainmail Bikinis

 I worry sometimes that I reveal too much about myself on this blog.

 I mean, with my recent posts I think we've definitely established that I find women with swords fascinating.

Then again, I suspect I'm not alone. 

For all those who really want to see a proper Red Sonja film, and everybody who wishes they'd hurry up and do
 that Axa movie that's been in development forever, here's one final batch of book cover amazons. 

Let's start with everybody's favourite lethal redhead.

  Boris Vallejo doing what he does best, although it has to be said, the She-Devil seems to be more of a spectator to events rather than an instigator. For the "Against.." cover I get the impression she's staying out of the way while the big-ass bird and the big-ass serpent settle their beef.  

  While hunting down these covers I found two great sites.: 
A Fantasy Review/Discussion Site:

Both are worth a look. 

This next cover was so good, it got used twice.

I suppose it was highly unlikely that these two books would ever be on sale at the same time. 

Jalav was popular enough to get a few sequels. 
Holy crap...does that horse have a lizard tail? 
No wonder Jalav seems to be struggling to stay on. 

Please note the spaceship.
Also that Jalav and her horse-thing are standing atop what looks like a giant cabbage.  

Next up, another series that seems to have faced into the mists but not before giving some artists a decent payday

One upon a time you could put bare boobs on a book cover but not on tv.
Now in 2016 you can put nudity on tv but not on book covers. 
Does anybody else think that's weird?

Naturally the reissues gave another artist a chance to get some Amazon cheesecake in his resume.

   Blatant butt shot.                                                                    Raven regrets buying her vest from the blacksmith. 

Just out of curiosity, who prefers the older artwork to the newer?
I'd like to hear your thoughts.

Yes, I know I suck at getting things line up properly. Deal with it.

Well, that's it for now. 

I hope you enjoyed this trek through a bygone era and if anybody out here has actually read any of these, let me know what you thought. 

And I'll leave you with an important question:
Put all these ladies in an arena, who's the last one standing?

That's all folks. 

Sunday, 4 September 2016

Paperbacks, Swords And Chainmail Bikinis

Well this post is a lot later than I intended it to be. Sometimes life gets in the way of blogging. Sorry about that.

 This is for everybody that liked my last post but thought it needed less clothing and more impractical armour. So I promise you boob windows, armour on non-vital spots and warrior women who make Slave Leia look overdressed.  Let's have at it, shall we?

  In a minute she's going to realise that her sword is nowhere near long enough to reach him.
Wheareas he doesn't need to reach her, he just needs to hit the camel hard enough and our haughty princess is eating dirt. 

sexy female warrior
boris vallejo warior woman
    Boris Vallejo doesn't seem to do as many book covers as he used to. That's a shame. 
This series interests me. Not only is there a sexy heroine but she's got her own pet werewolf. 
That's another one for the "To read" list. 

Fun fact: Quorthon dedicated Bathory's Viking epic "One Rode To Asa Bay" to author 
C Dean Anderson (aka Asa Drake) because he liked these books.
A snippet I found at the author's homepage so if you want a proper explanation visit:

I just realised that there is no way in Hel (sorry) that I'm getting all these into one post. 

tiana of reme
  Is anybody else distracted by the giant nipples on her brass bra? 

woman with a sword
I'd love to know the story behind some of these covers.
Like this one. Why does she seem so startled to find a bloke standing behind her?
What happened to the oars?
What's the deal with the big lizard?
Does anybody know where I can get these books  for under a fiver?

warrior woman leather armour
 Armour that just shouts "Stab me here!"
Then again, she seems to be winning so maybe the old Boobie-Distraction ploy is a good 'un.

sexy barbarian girl
 Useful tip; Never ever wave your genitals at somebody holding sharp blades. 

ridiculous armour
 I don't think I've ever seen a full body pendant before. 
Either that or she tried making her own armour out of leftover bits of Mithril. 

fierce warrior woman
 Just out of sight: A dozen barbarians taking a sudden interest in their shoes because they saw what happened to the last guy that wolfwhistled.

Brass brassiere space girl
 Just for a change, a heroine that does wear the gear depicted on the cover.  
This is a collection of fantasy/Sf spoofs where Ms. Birnbaum visits certain other fictional worlds.
Worth reading.

cavegirl with sword
Something makes me think the artist had just watched One Million BC .

That's all for now but I have a load of Jalav, Red Sonja and Raven covers left to use so stay tuned.  
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