16/12/12 - MusicByMeiosis

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Sunday 16th December 2012. Blog #67.


CONSUMER ADVICE

The sooner you realise that everything is a little bit shit then the sooner you will be able to make things just a little bit better for yourself. I am an optimistic kind of guy & like to think that the glass is half full rather than half empty, unless it is an actual glass of beverage, then I’d be thinking ahead to achieving a full glass once again and thus accepting that it is in fact half empty. However, my good nature and optimistic outlook has been severely tested by what I can only describe as a bunch of massive dickwads who have ripped me off one after the other, to the point where I was so stressed and depressed with the world, I was considering becoming a hermit & never ever trying to do anything ever again.

A couple of weeks ago we finally released our first ever ‘Friendly Atmosphere Newcastle Music Scene Podcast’. It is in essence an idea and concept I am very proud of - whether or not we can actually pull it off is a secondary concern. We collated and recorded everything for our first show a month ago. The only real problem we had with the recording is that it was two and a half hours long! So, naturally I painstakingly managed to edit it down to an hour and forty minutes, which is still a bit long but a bit more acceptably long. I then had to research and read lots of advice about how to go about releasing it. I had to pull an awful lot more all-nighters than I am used to in order to get it online. Anyway, albeit with a few mistakes that could be addressed later, I managed it.

Unfortunately I seem to have unluckily used to most sporadic, unreliable and rubbish company I could have stumbled across to host it. Podbean.com are my first unnatural, weird and most incompetent group of wannabe money grabbing bastards I wish to vent my anger at. After having paid my £60, I had to use a series of geeky YouTube video guides to guide me through their incomprehensible website, which kept crashing. Watching geeky YouTube videos to guide yourself through geeky things is probably the easiest way of getting the knowledge to do these things without having to gain a degree in computer programming. Even the geeks stumbled across the same frustrating problems I did but cut out the solutions of how they overcame them. This was very frustrating. In the end we managed – but on the day of the podcast’s launch Podbean.com was down. I found that a bit embarrassing, so I sent them a short email to complain. I don’t really do complaining, as I’d prefer to just make a mental note never ever to go there again and move on. Complaining wastes far too much of my valuable time which I’d much rather spend staring at a lampshade or picking at an itchy scab.

Their reply to my complaint which merely questioned if there was some kind of problem at their end, or as a novice, had I made a silly mistake was:

“WE WILL CANCELL YOUR ACCOUNT.”

Nooooooooooo! I’ve spent fucking ages on that. Do not do that. It’s fine now anyway… just leave it. Leave it. I have been awake for 24 hour periods at least 3 times trying to get that to where it is now & I have drunk, smoked and eaten my way through far too many indulges for us to give up now. I am now fat because of you. LEAVE IT!!

They cancelled my account.

My 60 quid doesn’t appear to have found its way back to me though. Paypal have charged me for their service for somehow effectively making it seem like the payment bounced and Barclays have taken their bit too in charges because of Paypal being dicks. So I’m left penniless & podcastless. Incidentally, the podcast remains on iTunes (I think by pure willpower). So you can still hear it here until next month when I’ll have some more money to change the RSS feed to a better and more respectable hosting company (probably Soundcloud). As a footnote to this debacle, Alex – who is my compardre on the podcast, has a degree in computer programming. Our next podcast will be out in mid January. Please make this hard work worthwhile and give us a listen. Any criticisms of it will be answered by the blanket response of “it’s OK as it is but I think we will get better at it as we move on!”

I slipped on some black ice, comically falling over, somehow in 2 directions, on a Metro Station platform last Friday. I think I slipped back, glanced some railings with my back and then bounced forwards and fell face first to the ground. Fortunately, my forehead broke the fall. When I got home I discovered a big 15 inch cut (not deep, just annoying) on my back and a tiny cut on my forehead. My ayePhone screen was smashed. The pint of Guinness I was carrying was a complete write off. My wonderful other half took my ayePhone to the Apple shop on Saturday morning to see if he could get a new screen fitted quickly as we were going away for the weekend & I’d be needing my mobile telephone with me. He only had to make a fucking appointment for 1410 on Monday. So I left for my weekend away with my broken but still kind of useable ayePhone.

That night, having fallen over the previous evening due to black ice & too much Guinness and the previous night having pulled an all-nighter due to Podcast difficulties and having had a lovely but exhausting evening in Sheffield, I was glad to get back to our hotel at 2am and have a good old-fashioned sleep. We were in the Jury’s Inn which is the definitive hotel chain for being neither shit nor amazing. The Jury’s Inn is where middle class people go to bed. Our room was fine, clean and decorated in a ‘not so bland as a Travelodge’ style. A nice firm bed and an extra pillow that I often yearn already in the wardrobe. I had internet access & could read some Wikipedia on my broken ayePhone for the 20 minutes it would surely only take me to drift off into the wonderful state of unconsciousness. I needed to replenish and repair my broken mind and body. Only that did not happen. My mind and my body deserved a rest, I quite often push them both beyond their limits and one or the other sometimes protests but tends not to let me down. But this evening, I had let them down, or perhaps the Jury’s Inn in Sheffield had let them down, or perhaps it was the men who were shouting in the corridor, banging on my door, setting off fire extinguishers and stomping around like general dicks until 8:30 in the morning who let them down.

A rational person may have phoned down to reception at around 4am and asked them to do something about the noise but I was no longer a rational person. What I wanted to do is get up, get dressed and give them a stern shouting at in my best scary Geordie accent, perhaps doing them a favour by putting them off to sleep via cracking an empty fire extinguisher around their heads. But I knew my mind was not up to the argument and my body was broken. I don’t mind being punched at all. It’s almost therapeutic. But I was feeling too fragile to risk any of that so what I did instead, was I just cried. I had a little breakdown in that hotel room & having a little breakdown in a hotel room which was equipped with a nice bed & a thermostat was ironic given it was from lack of sleep. I wouldn’t have minded so much, as teenagers will be teenagers, but at 6:30am when me and Snugglenolia were looking through the spy hole in the door, wondering if we could both take them, we noted that they were all about 30. It makes me fucking sick. Snugglenolia still wanted to go out and do the fire extinguisher around the head thing but thankfully, I was the sane one in the room.

My entire work over the past 8 years has been wiped from the external hard drive that I saved it all on. It contained not only everything ever – but also my Meiosis backing tracks I use to play live.  Basically, I have lost everything. My next gig is in January & I suppose I’ll have to pull something out of my bag of optimism for it. At the moment I have nothing as all the equipment I have is broken. I think this will be the best gig I ever do!  

I have been a dick recently. My full time job + the work I do for Meiosis & other bands around me has become a little overwhelming. When I first ventured out to reunite myself as Meiosis, I thought it would be a laugh and it would be fun. I stopped being a full time promoter in Newcastle because it just became too frustrating (& I was losing £1000s in money). I am beginning to feel the same way about Meiosis. Just over 2 years ago, I set myself the target of releasing 3 albums in 3 years and now with only 9 months to go – I feel it was unrealistic and I have been wasting my time all along. What if I just stop now? What will happen if I just give up? I’ll just give up? Fuck it.

Well I guess, a target would not be a target if I didn’t have to push myself to achieve it. I have noticed that Meiosis gigs have had good attendance this autumn, I have still lost money at all of them in a roundabout way but I’m pleased that, in Newcastle at least, we have a little loyal following. If nothing else, I hope the shows I have put on have made you all happy & you have maybe discovered some new bands or music you like by coming out to see them. That’s all I really want!

So instead of giving up, I have decided to push myself further. I have started recording my third and final album for a while, I am organising a UK tour (which may only consist of 2 dates!)  & I am producing some music for some other musicians, as well as carrying on the podcast. I think the choice of whether or not I can quit being Meiosis can only come this time next year after I have achieved my target of 3 albums in 3 years. Perhaps it will invigorate me into promoting my music more (I have had no time to send out demos to radio or record companies as I’ve been tied up with making music). Let’s just go for it. One year at a time and be better each year than we were before.

So I went to my appointment at the Apple Store on Monday at 1410. I arrived at 1410 precisely, already a bit pissed off, but the point when I got really annoyed was when Mr Apple at the Apple Store told me to take a seat. Why should I take a seat? I am here at the correct date and time you insisted on me being here, and now you are making me wait in a place I don’t want to be, which is far outside of my comfort zone. I have still not slept enough, I just want my ayePhone to work again. I already knew they were gonna charge us £130 to get this phone fixed. A couple of years ago I broke my old ayePhone screen and took it to an independent shop who advertised screen replacement for £40. It lasted 3 months before it just fell out of it’s own natural accord & inability to adhere itself to its new partner, so this time I thought the Apple store may be able to do a better job. Knowing they were going to charge me £130 and they made me make an appointment made me and my collective broken mind and body livid!

Knowing that I was being an absolute dick and about to unreasonably explode into a Monty Python worthy rant at any point, I busied myself by looking at some phone covers. I don’t like phone covers, as I like the feel of my phone in my hand. I paid £500 for it so I think the company that made it should respect the fact that I like that feeling of touch & feeling. If Apple can’t do it with all of their experience, money & influence with their product – then I have no chance as ‘Meiosis’ I thought…. then I thought, as I was looking at phone covers which were more expensive than my last sexual experience, hang on… am I selling Meiosis as a product or an experience? Or a product of an experience? What am I? What? Eh? That does not make any sense. It dawned on me right there and right then, that I can’t move on as I get too bogged down in thinking. Things work better when I don’t think.

I was interrupted at 1425 by Mr Apple. He was trying to be friendly. I told him I dropped my phone and it got broken. He asked “oh… how did that happen?”. I said, “well… I dropped it and then it broke”.

Whilst I was talking to Mr Apple, to my left, there was another young lady who was protesting rather loudly about her own broken phone. Whilst my Mr Apple was going through all the terms I tuned into her conversation with her Mr Apple. She claimed she had put a cover on her on her phone and whence she had taken the cover away… My God! Oh Golly, the phone had completely shattered into pieces! I wanted to nudge her on the shoulder and tell her I thought it was a good try but you’ve obviously got too pissed, shagged some bloke beneath your own ‘self indulgent league’, gone home, stumbled whilst you were trying to see if ‘Princess of the Amazing Bodies and Men Who Want To Wank Over Tits’ was on Channel 5, and you slipped, stumbled and dropped your ayePhone.

Mr Apple came back not with a fix but a brand new phone. A fucking brand new replacement phone!!! I realised why they had to make appointments, because of that stupid girl. Everything was ok. Sleep….

As it’s the season to be fucking jolly:

You might be interested in our wonderful T-shirts, or my albums (we have a few physical copies left of Where Reality Ends And I Begin – the perfect gift for somebody you like – but not that much).

I promise I will not rip you off!

Failing that – my 2 albums are on Spotify now to stream for nothing. You can download them from Bandcamp for £3. The links are all on my website. I urge you all to join in with me & Meiosis as because, for at least another year, I cannot get out!

Twitter: @MusicByMeiosis.com

http://www.musicbymeiosis.com

http://www.meiosis.bandcamp.com


 
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