Institutionalised

Or something. A poorly-thought out and (possibly – not babelfished it yet) frankly low-quality pun on the band Instituto, who were probably the best act at last night’s Troco Brahma closing event at Koko.

Notwithstanding UK rapper Sway‘s oops-that-fell-flat attempts to gee up the crowd during his solo segment which introduced Instituto, they were probably the most interesting, and crucially most together of the acts appearing on the Sunday show. Furthermore, the freestyle segment at the end (featuring Instituto, Sway, Dynamite MC and Soweto Kinch) was pretty good after a slightly suspicious start.

The Drumagick/DynamiteMC/Soweto Kinch/Bembe Segue/Mark de Clive Lowe “jam” at the start of the evening, on the other hand, wasn’t so together. Clearly there was a huge pile of talent on the stage, but it didn’t seem to be working together so well – plus, unless I was missing something, there were a pile of problems with the effects unit/amplification of Soweto Kinch’s sax, which made some wholly unpleasant noises at times.

I think it’s definitely worth checking out the individual artists (I will be) but as a live collaboration they didn’t really seem to gel so well, which was a shame.

A good evening, though, if potentially expensive (new artists = new CDs). Maybe Sway’s “don’t steal my album, buy it” rap worked!

Hot or not?

Not-very-shocking revelation: lists are great. I like ’em. So here’s a couple:

Things that work:
My DSL (yay)
DVD playback from the 360 (upscaled joy)
Wet hair on the train
Open plan kitchen = TV while cooking
Electric showers in summer
Having a bed (at last, Lou, at last!)
Sharing your photos (thanks, Meeta)
Major Nelson‘s audioblog
DVD playback from my geriatric Thompson DTH-4500 (much better when placed in 16:9 mode *blush*)

Things that don’t work:
50°C temps on the buses (*ow*)
Disks that won’t play in the 360
Not having aircon in my house
DSL @ 3.5Mb? Huh? Synchs at 8Mb! Boo, hiss.
Open plan kitchen = washing machine in your lounge
Talking to yourself. Bad Keith.
Bank balance after a weekend with Tim & El
Aging PC hardware

Lovebox

In the interest of making sure some of this appears on the front page, no hyperlink, but – Tim, El, Beth & I went to Lovebox last weekend.

Lovebox, is a festival held this year at Victoria Park (E. London) organised by Groove Armada. I think. Being honest, the first part of the day was a bit disappointing. Crappy bands, badly laid-out site…plus lots & lots & lots of queuing. Things picked up a bit in the evening, one way or another, and we did a bit of dancing to Groove Armada then zoomed off to see The Bays at the Hackney Empire. Wandering around outside afterward we were invited (or did we invite ourselves?) back to “The Palace” for a bit of an afterparty-afterparty.

Things to remember: kaleidoscope, blueberries, d.i.y. pokemon (gotta collect ’em all), kaleidoscope, glow sticks, kaleidoscope, many hugs, kaleidoscope, sub-sub-sub-sub-sub-clause, DJ Derek! Shame we never found the kaleidoscope.

Things to forget: “You smell”, Hot chip (yawn), ATM queues, “Sangria”, stomachache, Marcellus Wallace, Tim’s hat (oops), the cost (oh…my…god).

Summer project list

I’m forever writing these damn things, and never actually doing much (or anything) about making them happen, but it’s a useful record of what I could have been doing if I hadn’t spent so much time asleep/lounging on the sofa/playing insert game here for hours at a time. Here we go:

0. Bike to work. And home again. Every day. ‘Nuff said.

1. Make the tempMythBox work – think this can be achieved once the DSL line is installed. Will need to make use of my spare KVM I suspect as I’ll be using the 360 for DVD playback via the VGA connection until I either get an upscaling player, or get the tempMythBox sorted for DVD playback too.

The picture quality from the 360’s DVD player over VGA is superb – beautifully (imo) upscaled to 1360×768. It’s waaay better than my DVD player via SCART (yuck – no progressive scan) and from a quick test, better than the 360 via component. Via component, the 360 outputs 576p for some reason rather than upscaling to 720p, which is a shame. And, again from a quick test, it would seem that good though it is, the TV’s scaler isn’t a patch on the 360’s

2. Build a new desktop PC. Yes, I know I’ve just spent ££££ on a telly, but I do, at the end of the day, need a new PC. Not the monstrosity I *would* have bought, but a new one just the same. Probably based on one of Intel’s new Core 2 Duo chips, but the way AMD are slashing prices might swing me back that way. But no monster SLI or Crossfire graphics setup, only 2Gb of RAM and sticking with the aging Antec P180 case should make it achieveable. I hope. Well, it’s going to have to be 😉 – let’s hope Santa’s good to me!

3. With said new PC (to be purchased within the next 6 weeks – now there’s a deadline I’ll probably manage), I need to update my programming skills. I have the tools to hand, so that just involves sitting down with some work.

4. If 2) happens, then I’ll have some spare bits. So with a new, quiet case, a non-tempMythBox can be made.