Monday, 13 December 2010

TSP's 10 point plan to save the A-League

First a declaration - my interest in the A-League is more as a dispassionate onlooker than a supporter. The standard of football is terrible, the rivalries are manufactured, the team I supported in the NSL weren't allowed in for being too foreign and the trophy they give out to the winning side appears to be a toilet seat.

Realistically I couldn't give a continental whether or not the league prospers or goes completely tits up and ends up bankrupting everyone involved, but recognising that playing "Fantasy Chairman" is far more interesting than doing actual work I've come up with my plan to at least arrest the violent decline that the competition is suffering.

It might not save a competition where ten of the eleven clubs are either financially bollocksed or well on the way but now that the loss of the World Cup bid has effectively harpooned their Plan A for the future (i.e surely people will get up and about for football sometime before 2022) and there doesn't appear to be a Plan B this might be as good as it gets.

Get your red pens and hate out because it's time to start picking holes in the plan.

1 - Make it look like people care
Where possible order every team in the competition to close the side of the ground with the cameras on it to 'fans'. It's no wonder that matches only have attendances of 3 or 4 thousand when people see highlights on television and there doesn't appear to be a single person in the ground.

Force everybody in the arena to be where the camera can see them, and if you have to change the setup of the place to achieve it then do it and do it quickly. There's a big loser vibe hanging around the competition at the moment and it'll be impossible to shake if it goes on too long. Then people will not only stop going to games they'll stop watching them on TV too, Foxtel will decide that it's not worth it and next thing you know it's Central Coast vs Melbourne Heart on Channel 31. On replay. At 3.30am on a Wednesday.

2 - Accentuate the positive
Start preparing for a long term plan to drop the obsession with gigantic stadiums and look for boutique 10k grounds to play in.

It's hard to pull a stadium out of thin air, and there's no doubt that there were a heap of long term contracts signed in haste during the first years of the competition but other than Victory, Adelaide and Perth you've got teams playing in cavernous stadiums that they're never going to fill regularly. Drop the pipe dream that you're going to get 30k to every single match, at least for now, and pump some money into utilising 'secondary' stadiums in each city.

Split matches between the main ground and the smaller venues as required. Make the state federations fund the creation of a 'home of football' rectangular stadium in each capital city which can be used by the A-League teams and for state grand finals.

3 - Put on games that people care about
Can all the midweek games wherever possible and replace them with a national cup comp - even if it's just the 11 teams + 21 of the top state league/New Zealand for a 32 team knockout. Seed it so the 11 A-League teams can't play each other and make them all play their first game at the smaller side's ground.

If you can't find enough state league teams of a decent standard invite the national sides of Fiji, Solomon Islands, East Timor, PNG etc.. to play, it's not like their players are doing anything else on a Wednesday that they won't be able to get out of.

4 - Take it to the streets
Play more matches 'on the road' in cities without A-League teams.

Wellington have got the right idea playing one or two games a year in Christchurch and Dunedin - they get bigger crowds there than at home. Can't believe they don't play more games in Geelong, Canberra, Cairns, Tassie etc.. If I was the Gold Coast I'd much rather play a game in Hobart and get 2000 people than 1700 at home. The main focus on the comp should be TV and good luck if you get a crowd.

There's building your 'brand' and then there's recognising that right now nobody in your city gives a rats and if they do they're almost certainly watching it on television. When the game is live the majority of people don't give a rats where they're watching it from. What it does give you is a chance to show why they should come to your next (heavily promoted on the coverage) home game.

5 - Know your role
Move the dates of the season so that it goes over the start of the footy seasons more than the end.

There's no point starting the comp during AFL/NRL finals and waiting for people to care comes Round 5, you may as well start it against round 1 or pre-season competitions. It's still not ideal, and there should be as little crossover as possible, but you cannot launch a season against the finals of the two biggest competitions.

More importantly drop the rhetoric about how it's the world game and how it should be so much more important than 'native' sports. Maybe it should be, but in this country it isn't - just like how it will never be in the US and their league is on a long-term upswing because they've been smart enough to target the right markets instead of annoying everyone else with a sense of entitlement.

Junior participation figures are all well and good but it means nothing if all your clubs are bankrupt and the kids chuck it in at 15 to play ping pong instead.

6 - Find teams people care about
Maybe this is an outrageous suggestion, but they could invite massive foreign clubs to field a 'reserves' side as the 12th team. Having 11 teams makes no sense, and they could invite a different side every season.

Even if it's Manchester City reserves playing out of Northcote they'll probably generate more interest and TV coverage where it actually counts than having a team in Townsville. Even if you invited some more money than brains freaks like Red Bull to field a different team every year they'd probably buy enough decent name foreign players to keep it interesting.

It's a grubby path to travel down, and it would be unfortunate to have to go in that direction, but the other option is to keep travelling along with teams being propped up by billionaires until they get sick of wasting their money and let the clubs die, leaving the competition with one or two solid, viable teams and a rotating cavalcade of teams from the same city changing their name and going broke every two years.

7 - Reunite with 'old' football
Don't be afraid of letting the state leagues play during summer. Instead of miring them in the winter in front of empty stadiums, treating them like second class citizens and then stealing their players at the end of the year for free embrace them. Play your reserves and youth teams in the state competitions. Kick out the clubs who are thinly veiled political parties and concentrate on the ones that are being run for the right reasons. Play a limited amount of games as curtain raisers to the A-League games in the same city.

8 - Rewrite the past
Shut the fark up about "the bad old days" and how the NSL was apparently a non-stop warzone of ethnic violence. It had its moments, and it's the fault of the people running the game for not doing better to stamp it out, but the majority of matches were conducted in a completely trouble free environment. I seem to recall them even playing the national anthem before every game, something they don't do anymore.

Next time somebody goes off on a rant about the 'bad old days' (i.e anyone who ever talks about the game on SEN) ask them to name off the top of their head their all-time five best NSL riots. Chances are that they'll struggle to get to three without just making something up.

Just because the so called 'football community' can draw a line between 'old football' and 'new football' it doesn't mean everybody else does and the outright lies that are told about what it 'used to be like' do nothing to get the people who think it still is like that to buy into the game.

9 - Plan for the future
A "B-League" with promotion and relegation might not be viable yet, and it might never be, but identify and nurture the best clubs outside the A-League in Australia and New Zealand. Set up a "Champions League" for the best state league teams to play each other, encourage pre-season friendlies between these sides and the A-League clubs. The league has to stop pretending that everything is rosy inside the tent and a complete nightmare outside of it because they're a couple of bored businessmen pulling out away from being in exactly the same situation and playing in front of cow paddocks.

10 - Admit where you've gone wrong
Don't rush to add any new teams.

Introducing a second team in Melbourne was probably the right thing to do, especially considering how many sides there are in NSW and Queensland, but it's going to take a lot of time and a lot of lost money for it to work. I've always said that they should have had two teams in Melbourne and Sydney straight off the bat from season one - there was very little to be gained in building one up and then (supposedly) cutting it in half to create a second team three or four years later.

It's clear that none of the expansion teams have worked. Wellington just about get away with it despite having ordinary crowds, but they were really just a straight swap for the failed Auckland side that fouled up the average attendances of the first season of the competition. Both North Queensland and the Gold Coast have been failed experiments that are either on their last legs or should be. Instead of adding new sides I'd merge those two teams, rebrand them as Queensland and have them play half their games in each location with an eye to television figures instead of crowd attendance.

The FFA have already given up the idea of adding a West Sydney team for now. Despite the success of the first Sydney side they can barely string a crowd together so it was never going to work except as a tax write-off. There are a lot of places in Australia where you could put a team but you wouldn't make a dime - instead of rolling the dice and hoping for the best pair teams up with these cities and have them share their games with them instead of expensive new sides with barely any support or financial backing.

If all else fails just accept that the whole thing is a massive waste of money and give up.

Frank Lowy, despite spending the last ten years trying to convince people that Chadstone: The Fashion Capital is better than anything Westfield has to offer I'm here to help. I'm happy to drop everything and come work for the league right now but I want to be paid up front.

Tuesday, 7 December 2010

How do you solve a problem like Christmas?

For most of my life I've been Christmas skeptic. It's probably got something to do with rumbling the Santa myth at the age of four after laying a trap and springing out of bed to find my mother and grandmother pretending to be Jolly Old St. Nick. “AHA!” I probably didn’t cry, before forcing them to admit that the whole thing was a fraud. The good news was that I got the presents anyway after promising not to go straight out on the first day of the new school year and spill the beans to everybody else. Had it happened today I’d have been whisked off to therapy to the next day and wouldn’t have turned out the bitter, soulless, heartless human that I stand accused of being. Well, maybe not the soul bit. That went when I sold it to some guy in Albury on Ebay for $13.50 in 2001 but that's not important right now.

So, in the spirit of openness and tolerance which should guide everything we do no matter what, if any, religion you follow I'm writing this for everyone. But more specifically, at the risk of turning this into a My Chemical Romance song, I'm writing to the people who have been bullied by society into Christmas against their will and are seeking a way out. You, my friends, are not alone. Follow me and we'll create a world where people can no longer describe you as "Scrooge" in a borderline defamatory way because you don’t want to join their workplace Kris Kringle or drape everything with tinsel.

It’s the enforced gift exchange which troubles me the most. I'm not sure this aspect of the festival was ever explicitly stipulated in the bible. Perhaps it's deep inside one of those clauses that you have to read in Aramaic while hanging upside down from a tree to get the correct interpretation, but never in nine years of paying polite interest at Catholic schools do I remember the bit where they read us JB Hi-Fi 3:16 “thou shalt buy gifts for all or be cast into the fires of social hell”. What I will tell you for certain is that there’s nothing about having to send every person you’ve ever met in your life a card every year. Just like Valentine’s Day and the twenty pages of gushing, embarrassing and frankly hilarious messages between courting couples in the newspapers it’s an invention designed to line the pockets of merchants, keep the Hallmark company afloat and give us all a reason to coo over the fact that there's still some sort of civility in society.

This week alone I've been asked three times "have you done your Christmas shopping yet?" and three times I've said I don't do it only to be greeted with a look like I'd just admitted to butchering a Shetland Pony with a machete. This isn’t some sort of anti-capitalist protest and my next step isn’t throwing rubbish bins at riot police out the front of the G20 summit, I say spend money until you’re utterly bankrupt and forced to live in a cardboard box if you like just don’t do it because you feel that you have to or because you’re worried about social exclusion.

Nobody seems to care if you’re not interested in the religious side of things, which is odd but not as strange as how the 20% of people who identified as being non-Christian or nothing at all in the last census are somehow allowed to skip all the Jesus focused celebrations but are still required, as if by law, to hand over trinkets and Borders gift vouchers to third cousins and garbagemen. You can openly mock the concept of going to a Midnight mass to somebody in one breath and then be cut out of their will for not sending a card. That 20% is not even counting the 11% of people taking the piss and claiming stupid things like being Jedi. How many of us are just doing it to keep others happy? Maybe a majority generally enjoy it, or at least force themselves to, but what about people who don’t? Do you have the right to say no without being abused or having people say they’re “sorry for you”? Of course you do.

I'm as guilty as any child of taking the Sega Master System and running when I was young. I’m certainly not standing on any lifelong moral highground here, and even though I’m still concerned about the morality of telling your kids lying is always wrong and then lying to them about some fat porky climbing down the ceiling and stuffing the sack I can see how going along with the myths and mystical teachings of St. Xbox can be positive for kids.

At least it should be positive, I was lucky enough to grow up in a household where the split came pre-birth and I was never treated to the spectacle of arguments over the table on the 25th and the inevitable divorce-remarriage circuit leading to an interminable Tour De France style quest to fifty gatherings a year with yet more and more presents for half siblings, cousins and other various freaks that you barely know and barely tolerate. Imagine having to go through all that? Plenty of you probably do and if you’re sick of it just say no.

Last night I suffered the biggest grilling of all time about my lack of interest in the season. It was light hearted, but there was a tone of disbelief when I reiterated that no I really don't want to receive presents. Nor do I want to sing carols, put up a tree or drive around the suburbs trying to find obscenely lit up houses sapping the national power grid with their neon atrocities. First there was the suggestion that I’d been scarred by bad experiences with my family, then the idea that it was bad gifts in the past and finally budgetary concerns on my behalf. There’s nothing like people thinking you’ve blown all your money on the pokies to really make you really feel welcome in their holiday season.

But that doesn't mean that I don't want you to do any, or all, of the above. I'm not the December version of Richard Dawkins, hacking down Christmas trees with an axe and leaping out from behind trees to scream at children that their parents are lying to them about Santa. Call me scrooge if it makes you feel better about having maxed out your credit card for no reason, but a true Scrooge would want to ruin the season for everybody else. Not us. We just want to be on the margins, sitting on the kids table looking in this quaint, invented tradition.

If you're into it then you have my blessing to go mad for the season in any way you wish. But if you're only going along with it to please everyone else then I'm here to tell you that you're not alone and it's time to stand up and fight for your right to depart from Christmas.

"You have to give presents" I was told. Why? Is it so wrong to remove oneself from the whole thing? I don't want to be given anything, I don't want to give you anything and we're all happy. There's no need to trawl shopping centres at 3am on the Thursday before Christmas desperately trying to find me something that I might like but if I don't you don't really care because I'll plaster on a fake smile and pretend I do anyway.

If you say you’re not keen get ready for the standard arguments. You shouldn't have the same holidays, you shouldn't be allowed to go to the parties, you should be thrown on a similar bonfire to Joan of Arc etc.. Do they do the same to friends of other religions? Of course not. It would be borderline racist and you’d probably end up with somebody knifing you. I’d be more than happy to show up at work on the 25th as long as meant being able to exercise the democratic right to not go through the rest of the process.

There's a sickening falseness to the whole thing. Even if you're going to give and get with your closest family why do you need to wait until December 25? Surprise your mother with something nice on May 13. Do it again on August 2, hell fire up again on December 24th if you must but why wait until you're told to do it.

Now is the time for all of us who don't want to play the game to say so. No more anxiety about what Aunt Mabel or the guy in the chicken shop will think if you don't give them a gift. Tell them that they're wonderful people and that you don't want them to give you anything either. Instead I say give to charity. This isn't some sort of George Costanza "Human Fund" scam, do something positive in the name of your loved ones and if they don't appreciate it then tough - tell them to go to the Congo and recover their donated duck.

The world is not going to be saved in our lifetime but I'm here to tell you that the path to enlightenment isn't coming from a bag stuffed full of randomly selected crap from Chadstone: The Fashion Capital which you found only after driving around for three hours to get a car park. At the risk of ending up living in a panic room with Danish cartoonists I'm going to suggest that if the old JC chose December 25 to make his shock comeback (and wouldn't that completely ruin up the day for those of us who never believed in the first place?) he'd slap mankind upside the head for being greedy bastards who completely missed the point.

This December just say enough is enough. No matter what the power of commerce compels you to do you've got a choice to say no. See you in social hell suckers.

P.S - I am available to host any Christmas functions
P.P.S – Once you’re shunned by your family you’re welcome to come over to mine on the 25th and watch National Lampoon’s European Vacation. There’s a fit bit o’tit in it.

Saturday, 4 December 2010

TSP's top 50 tracks of 2010

Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to the most prestigious night in international music. The TSP Top 50 for 2010. Which act will walk away with this year's David Lee Roth medal for song of the year? And here's tonight's host...


My lords, ladies and gentlemen. Before we start a quick recap of the top fives of previous years. Full counts from 2007, 2008 and 2009 if you're into that sort of thing and broken YouTube links.

Everything else was lost in the Great Blog Hosting Debacle of 2006. '07 was even extended to a top 100, the folly of which is now shown by the fact that nobody can remember how 3/4 of the songs from 51-100 went.

1. Kaiser Chiefs - I Predict A Riot
2. Maximo Park - Apply Some Pressure
3. Goldfrapp - Ooh La La
4. The Killers - Somebody Told Me
5. Bloc Party - Helicopter

1. The Young Knives - Here Comes The Rumor Mill
2. Giant Drag - This Isn’t It
3. Silvia Night - Congratulations
4. Lily Allen - LDN
5. Joey Negro - Make A Move On Me

1. The Hold Steady - Chips Ahoy!
2. New Young Pony Club - Ice Cream
3. The Teenagers - Homecoming
4. Arctic Monkeys - Fluorescent Adolescent
5. Jack Penate - Spit At Stars

1. Lethal Bizzle - The Come Up
2. Neon Neon - Luxury Pool
3. MGMT - Electric Feel
4. Empire Of The Sun - Walking On A Dream
5. Fryars - Olive Eyes

1. N.A.S.A - Spacious Thoughts (featuring Tom Waits and Kool Keith)
2. Yeah Yeah Yeahs - Heads Will Roll
3. Boy Crisis - The Fountain of Youth
4. Bat For Lashes - Daniel
5. Low Fidelity All Stars - The Good Times

As we can see no artist has ever made the top five twice. Most of them have released a follow-up album of three but never managed to scale the heights of their TSP award winning performance. BUT, this year somebody breaks that trend. Who will it be? Sadly for all of us I can confirm that it's not Silvia Knight.

Before we begin, a short explanation of how we got here. Throughout the year tracks are dumped into one big f'off shortlist until December 1 when the list is culled of all the "how desperate was I to get something on the list?" selections and the remainder are pitted against each other in Thunderdome style combat to see what will crack the final fifty. This year's list opened at about 175 and was knocked down to 110ish before the final field.

The usual rules apply. Maximum of two songs per artist and no covers allowed. In the event of a chosen song later turning out to be a cover of an obscure track that nobody has ever heard of I reserve the right to leap from my 11th floor window. Alright Mr. Copperart, let's do it.

50. Savoir Adore - Sarah's Secret
Sounds like a $2 Shop Arcade Fire, but rattles by in 2.42. Given the amount of albums that their soundalikes have sold it's no shame to be the second division version.

49. The Vaccines - Wreckin' Bar (Ra Ra Ra)
Even better, just ninety seconds worth. Coming on like a multi-gender, pop Ramones the Vaccines have been touted as the next big thing which should mean you never hear from them again.

48. Naive New Beaters - LA Trumpets
The sort of thing that you'd never get away with if you weren't French. Another ninety seconds worth. Prepare for 13 minute dirges later in the countdown to make up for this.

47. Everything Everything - Suffragette Suffragette
The song that brings us the immortal line "who's gonna sit on your face when I'm gone?" Who indeed.

46. SIA - Clap Your Hands
Forget Channel 10 buying the rights to this and then using it for every single promo for about six months and forget the fact that she's a seemingly insane Max Sharam for the 21st century. Most importantly try to forget the amazing similarity to 1979's Get It Up For Love by Tata Vega and concentrate instead on its undoubted pop qualities.

45. Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers - I Should Have Known It
He's still alive. You'll never get another Free Fallin' or American Girl though.

44. David E Sugar - Party Killer
David E Sugar is not a party killer. The Manson Family were party killers. There's a touch of the hipsters about it if you're touchy on that sort of thing.

43. Lissie - In Sleep
The first time I heard this it was dismissed in the first few seconds, but I got distracted and came back halfway through to discover I'd been dropped in the middle of a Fleetwood Mac reunion. If Stevie Nicks were dead I'd suggest that Lissie were her reincarnation.

42. Paul Weller - Wake Up The Nation
In which the godfather of Mod tees off on Facebook and advises Britain to fire up. Not without some justification too.

41. Aloe Blacc - I Need A Dollar

40. Gonzales - I Am Europe
Containing all sorts of bizarre metaphors for Europe. You'd think there was something sensible and artistic about the whole thing if it wasn't being sung by the same guy who once performed a track called Cum On You.

39. Minitel Rose - Heart of Stone
More French people. God forbid Phoenix could ever do anything half as good as Too Young ever again they'd wipe the floor with the rest of the Gallic contingent. Don't hold your breath.

38. Juliana Pasha - It's All About You
But for those of you who are bored of the French, here's an Albanian straight from this year's surprisingly quality song heavy Eurovision contest. After a few years of disappointment Europe delivered this season. Stand up and applaud Enver Hoxha fans everywhere.

37. Grinderman - Heathen Child
Nick Cave scares the children

36. Shit Browne - Artifice
You'd have to be French to get away with a name like that. Video doesn't show up anywhere on YouTube and you'd be advised to turn ON safe searching before looking for it on Google.

35. Janelle Monae - Tightrope
The video, and her hairdo, is baffling but the track is a triumph. 21st century soul without the need for Autotune.

34. Elton John and Leon Russell - It Wasn't For Bad
Yes, it's Elton but come back it's not fruity prancing on the beach a'la I'm Still Standing or playing a piano dressed as Donald Duck. Will almost take the taste of Candle In The Wind '98 out of your mouth. But not quite.

33. Cee Lo - Bright Lights, Bigger City
Ten times better than the more famous, filth friendly track that you know and love. Does not contain gratuitous obscenity. That would be shithouse.

32. Goldfrapp - Alive
It's not my fault that six months after I'd heard it and decided to like it that Channel 10 would use it in the promo for their new station. Get amongst it in its full version. Or watch SBS.

31. Comanechi - Crime of Love
The sort of low-fi as buggery, sung by women stuff that Kurt Cobain used to whop off over before topping himself. For added effect it ends with the young lady shouting WANKERS! WANKERS! WANKERS! at us for the last twenty seconds, and for that we are all winners

30. Plan B - Stay Too Long
Motown/rap crossover from a concept album about a man in prison. It doesn't end well for him. More news at 11.

29. Hera Bjork - Je Ne Sais Quoi
The other Iceland Bjork, as seen on Eurovision 2010 with her belting eurodance ballad. Have I ever told you how much I love belting eurodance ballads?

28. Egyptian Hip Hop - Moon Crooner
A bunch of English kids with what sounds like Casio keyboards coming on like a 21st century Happy Mondays. Achieves and suggests better is to come in the future. No actual hip-hop or Egyptian behaviour included.

27. Brandon Flowers - Magdalena
The bad news for the rest of The Killers is that this sounds exactly like one of their records but without any of the personnel. We wish the rest of the band well in their future endeavours on the Theatre Restauraunt circuit. Continues to tread the same faux-country path of the last Killers album but without the trouble of having to split up the money. Problem solved and it's hello Centrelink to old mates 1, 2 and 3.
Previous Appearance - #4 in 2005 with Somebody Told Me (as The Killers)

26. The Winter Olympics - Feeling European
Your standard English stodge rock but with interesting European metaphors for shagging and going through your nothing to declare aisle etc.. No passport required for EU citizens. No video available so here's an inferior single of theirs. Warning - he looks like he sort of hipser you'd want to kick in the plums.

25. Ali Love - Smoke And Mirrors
Italo Disco fever! MORE PLEASE.

24. Klaxons - Flashover
"Nu Rave" possible users of hallucenogenic substances add crashing guitar with surprisingly positive effects. Sounds like the Jonestown Massacre - the real one, not the band
Previous Appearance - #26 in 2007 with Golden Skanks

23. Hadouken! - M.A.D
The frantic sound of your car being broken into somewhere in the dodgy part of North London.
Previous Appearance - #73 in 2007 with Superstar

22. Grinderman - Palaces of Montezuma
Nick Cave's hirsuite new band give the world a tender love song where the spinal column of JFK is offered up as a token of affection. Everybody wins.

21. Chromeo - Night By Night
Proof that you can use distorted vocals and Autotuney shit without sounding like Believe by Cher or any of the 500 songs Kanye West has done since he stopped being good.

20. Chanee and n'evergreen - In A Moment Like This
Regular readers will understand my long held fetish for power ballads. Therefore I make no apologies for the Norweigan Eurovision entrant finishing so high in the list. It's like REO Speedwagon cloned as a woman and married to itself.

19. Big Boi - General Patton
The non-Hey Ya portion of Outkast meets what sounds like the Russian Army Choir in the world's foremost rap/choral mashup

18. Manic Street Preachers - A Billion Balconies Facing The Sun
Still angry, and despite diminishing results overall this is the standout from their latest album. Not much left in the tank I'd suggest.

17. Aeroplane - My Enemy
This year's Ghosts 'n Stuff. No lyrics required. Like waking up in a modern Sega Megadrive

16. Keane featuring K'naan - Looking Back
What's this doing here? I hate Keane. Roy, Robbie and the band. But sadly it's my duty to report that they released two tracks this year that were half decent and didn't end up on rotation in every wine bar between here and Western Europe. More to come.

15. Chromeo - Hot Mess
Hello, I've just gone into a Sam Tyler-esque coma and suddenly it's 1987. I'm absolutely thrilled by this turn of events.

14. Electric Six - The Newark Airport Boogie
You'd have gotten 1000-1 on the people behind Dance Commander ever making an appearance in one of my top fifties again last year. The only thing we'd heard from them since was a putrid cover of Queen's Radio Ga Ga, but against the odds here they are.

13 - Scissor Sisters - Night Work
I expect this is the sound of loading up on Amyl Nitrate and going for it openly in San Francisco in 1979. Would have been destroyed like all their other songs if it had been a hit.

12 - Plan B - Welcome To Hell
Right, so now he's in jail and to put not too fine a point on it is in deep shit. Thanks to the album shifting a few copies (which by today's standards was probably about 75) the story is scheduled to continue on the next album. Episodic music. Why not, nothing else is working for them.

11 - My Chemical Romance - Scarecrow
Previous Appearances #55 and #45 in 2007 with I Don't Love You and Mama

Ok, so I'm a moderately ashamed MCR fan. Wanna fight about it? Doesn't mean I'm going to see them in concert, sit on the steps of Flinders Street Station looking like a fuckhead or wear a black trenchcoat and kill my parents. And thankfully neither are they, because the poster children for emo have gone stadium rock and it's glorious.

10. Ou Est Le Swimming Pool - Dance The Way I Feel

Feel free to ignore the messy end that came to the lead singer when he jumped off a tower at a Belgian festival (!?) and concentrate instead on what will go down as their crowning achievement, a perfect slice of pop that didn't even lose its appeal when the radio stations picked it up.

9. Arcade Fire - Sprawl II (Mountains Beyond Mountains)

I might be the only person in the world not to have gone wild for their first two albums but there's absolutely no doubt that the latest is a solid gold cracker. This is the not the last of them you will see in this countdown.

8 - Angus and Julia Stone - On The Road

An album track that I heard quite by accident in somebody else's car. Sure the rest of the album doesn't stack up and the guy looks like he could do with a wash but this is sublime.

7 - Arcade Fire - Modern Man

This reminds me of something that I can't quite put my finger on despite having listened to it plenty of times in the last week. Whisper it quitely but there's something Hall & Oates-ish about it. Despite that, or in fact because of it, it dominates. There's something sinister about this, like there's a subtext to it that is only told in the music and not the lyrics. Consider me converted to their cause.

6 - Chew Lips - Karen

I have absolutely nothing to say about this other than that it's a top tune and whoever's house they filmed it in needs to put in new carpet.

5 - Paul Heaton - Even A Palm Tree (audio only)
In a year when I rediscovered the genius of The Beautiful South a new Heaton solo album came just at the right time. Against classic era South this would be practically undetectable as a new solo track, and that's a good thing.

4 - Keane - Stop For A Minute (featuring K'naan)

Well there you go. I never thought they'd make it into the top 100 let alone the final five, but finally after all these years somebody finally inserted a rap bit into their song which made sense and contributed positively to the overall project. This is no shonky K. Minogue Shocked By The Power rap section, it delivers the goods. In fact it steals the show so much that they should swap it around and have it as featuring Keane.

3 - Lena - Satellite

Even though I only had it second on the night, trying not to be populist, there's no doubt that this is the best Eurovision track since Silvia Night telephoned god and called him "dawg" in 2006. Almost the perfect pop song. So perfect that if it had been done by say... Kate Nash I'd probably have decried it as slop and kicked the television in. Her wonky German accent is what sends it to the next level. Deserved more.

2 - Goldfrapp - Rocket

Previous Appearances #3 in 2005 with Ooh La La, #46 and #39 in 2008 with Cologne Cerrone Houdini and Happiness.

The 'frapp did the right thing on her latest album and came over all Italo Disco.. and got nothing from the punters. This is a gem though. Perfect Eurodance magic which spent pretty much the whole year as favourite to take home the DLR before a last minute intervention knocked it out of pole position. Ladies and gentlemen, take up thy bottles and assorted garbage because I'm about to make what will undoubtedly be the most controversial #1 selection since Clive Waterhouse. I give you this year's winner *ducks*

1 - My Chemical Romance - Bulletproof Heart

There are two reasons I almost didn't make this #1. Firstly I've spent the last twenty years mocking the Triple J Hottest 100 for always turning up top songs that were released about fifteen minutes before voting started, so how much of a hypocrite does it make me to say a song that I first heard a week and a half ago is my favourite for the year.

The second reason for concern is the blatant grab for stadium rock that they're going for. Usually that should be decried and they should be bottled from the stage a'la Daphne & Celeste at the Reading Festival, but in this case it is absolutely fantastic. Like U2 when they were good injected with glam Bowie and just the slightest hint of their depressive past.

I've got a good feeling that I'm not going to look back in a year and think "oh christ, what was I doing?" Now that the controversy is out of the way let's go back to our Master of Ceremonies.

A toast to the winners and we'll see you next year for 2011's glittering prize. With REM and The Strokes both threatening to release albums they go in as early favourites, but the prospect of a shock in-studio Libertines comeback could blow the market out of the water. Exciting times ahead. Pete Smith speaking*

* TSP accepts that the actual Mr Copperart had nothing to do with this countdown because we couldn't afford him. The role of Pete was played by the former Atlanta Braves pitcher of the same name.

Sunday, 28 November 2010

20 to 1: Amusing Greek Terrorists...

... AKA the episode that Bert refused to host.

There must be an art to coming with a name for your armed commando group. Once somebody has decided to step over the line and start pinging firebombs at TGI Fridays in protest at increased curly fry prices the next step is to come up with a catchy name that will strike fear into the hearts of capitalists everywhere.

In Greece left-wing terrorism is practically a national sport, but as you can see from this list they are also beset with a cavalcade of baffling group names.

I'm not sure if we're missing something in the translation from Greek to English but surely the last thing you want to do is to set off your dinky little bomb made from wires and ping pong balls then send the letter to the paper claiming responsibility with a name that will be laughed out of the room. Sadly it appears in Greece that this is not the case and their groups end up soundling like power ballads, ice hockey teams, events of the Decathalon and Belle & Sebastian album tracks.

So, here's twenty of the best. Try and guess which ones Phil Collins will name his new album after.

20. Solidarity Gas Canisters
19. Anarchist Attack Teams
18. Children of Fire
17. Anti-Power Struggle
16. Chaotic Attack Front
15. Consciously Enraged
14. Fires of Hell
13. Anarchist Faction for Subversion
12. Thus Far and No Further
11. Uncontrolled Rage
10. Fighting Guerillas of May
9. Knights of the Torched Bank
8. Revolutionary Torch-Bearing Run
7. Movement Against State Arbitrariness
6. Torrid Winter
5. The Committee for Promotion of Intransigence
4. Melting Nuclei
3. Nuclei for Promoting Total Catastrophe
2. Revolutionary Subversive Faction-Commando Unibomber
1. Anti-Authority Erotic Cells

* We do not endorse blowing anything up. I respectfully request that ASIO don't open a file on me just on the basis of this post alone, please at least take everything else into account.

Friday, 16 July 2010

Ranking the Bond themes without the aid of a novelty headline

There's no point simply ranking the Bonds themselves, because every time I try and advance my theories about the genius of Roger Moore people start throwing bricks at my house and keying my car. So, power ballad fans, toss your REO Speedwagon records aside (gently, they'll be worth something one day)

Die Another Day - Madonna
Where they threw away the power ballad concept and went with synthpop done by somebody nobody had cared about for a decade. Then they went and gave her a role in the film as well. A well aimed knife to the back of the entire Bond genre.

19. From Russia With Love - Matt Munro
Exactly what you'd expect from 1963. Actually more like what you'd expect from 1953.

18. The Man With The Golden Gun - Lulu
One of the most underrated films (come on, it's got the murderous midget from Paradise Island in it, what do you want?) but the theme song is weedy. Movie also contains the slide-whistle sound effect that makes Bond purists want to stab people. I'm for it.

17. Tomorrow Never Dies - Sheryl Crow
She dealt with Lance Armstrong being short one plum, but not with being called up for the biggest job in soundtracks. We were therefore robbed of not only a Pulp theme, but an absolute belter as well. And Teri Hatcher was in it so you can cram the whole project with walnuts.

16. The World Is Not Enough - Garbage
Not withstanding the fact that I would cut off two limbs to go back in time and crack onto mid 90's Shirley Manson, this is bollocks. The only thing that can be said for it is that it's better than the film which is undoubtedly the worst Bond movie ever made.

15. Another Way To Die (Quantum of Solace) - Jack White and Alicia Keys
Film utter shite after a promising start to the Daniel Craig era, and theme song not much chop either. Not the worst but only because of some of the utter gash that proceeded it in the Pierce Brosnan (*spit*) films.

14. Goldeneye - Tina Turner
The only half decent thing about the movie that almost killed the Bond franchise.

13. Diamonds Are Forever - Shirley Bassey
Not nearly enough oomph from the Dame. Soundtracked a shock Connery return, and a return to form for the films, but even when she starts belting it out the whole thing sounds phoned in.

12. Licence To Kill - Gladys Knight
The last great Bond power ballad from the last half decent Bond film for more than 15 years. Effect somewhat ruined by having a different song over the end credits.

11. All Time High (Octopussy) - Rita Coolidge
The first theme to not feature the name of the film, and gee I wonder why, is alright but moves at a glacial pace. Maybe they didn't want to set the bar too high for Roger Moore to follow given that he was about 200 years old by the time the movie was made.

10. Live And Let Die - Wings
Oft cited as the best but I'm well over it. Still better than most, but effect somewhat ruined by every shithouse band in the world covering it. Axl Rose I'm looking directly at you.

9. A View To A Kill - Duran Duran
Marred by a shambolic early 80's video with visual effects straight out of student theatre, but quality new romantic action nonetheless.

8. You Only Live Twice - Nancy Sinatra
A rare occasion where slow pace pays off. The orchestral bit at the start is a cracker and they nail the Asian feel without ever having to have daughter of Frank resort to Me No Rikey style accents and Aneka style chopsticks in the hair.

7. You Know My Name (Casino Royale) - Chris Cornell
Old Mate from Soundgarden being called upon to soundtrack a 21st century Bond had all the hallmarks of disaster but god damn it the boy pulled it off in spectacular fashion. If you have to drop the power ballad motif then this is the way to do it, with a meaty rock number that nearly washed the taste of recent crimes out of our mouths.

6. Moonraker - Shirley Bassey
The disco version from the end credits would push number one but I'll take this. Bassey returns and gives it what for in spectacular fashion. In space.

5. Goldfinger - Shirley Bassey
Who will ever forget Alan Partridge walking to the service station along the freeway singing his own version? Everyone but me presumably.

4. Thunderball - Tom Jones
Arguably done better by Ron Barassi on The Late Show, this is basically just Tom doing Welsh spoken word with a bit of bang thrown in but it's good stuff.

3. For Your Eyes Only - Sheena Easton
The ultimate Bond power ballad. How good is the bit where she goes "but you won't need to read between the liiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiines"?

2. The Living Daylights - a-ha
NORWEGIAN SYNTHPOP MAGIC. Take me to Bond karaoke and let's sing this mother right now.

1. Nobody Does It Better (The Spy Who Loved Me) - Carly Simon
Don't be fooled by the LJ Hooker ads, this is the real deal. From the piano bit at the start to the shots women swinging on giant lugers and spinning around with guns in the opening it's got it all. And the "Baaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaby you're the best bit?" Chilling. Never seen the film? Let Alan Partridge take you through the opening.

Thursday, 1 July 2010

5 reasons why this World Cup is the worst in years

I have no idea if this post was finished or not, but I only found it in my TSP 'drafts' in October 2013, so now I'd may as well post it.

I've watched every World Cup since 1990 semi-religiously. Italy, USA, France, Japan/South Korea, Germany and now South Africa. And what have we learnt in the first week and a bit? That this has been a rubbish tournament so far. Good thing that my original plan to take the month off and watch every single match fell apart.

1. The crowds
It seems rude to me that there are half empty - or worse - stadiums for World Cup finals matches. I'm not surprised that the people of Africa haven't flocked South to check out the action, and I'm equally not surprised that the people of the world haven't chosen to visit a country where carjacking is a national sport but bloody hell FIFA just give the tickets away and let's get some atmosphere.

Then there's the vuvuzela, one of the greatest crimes ever to be perpetrated on sports. The organising committee claim that it's got something to do with African history and heritage. Yep, there's nothing more African than a piece of plastic made in China. Offered the chance to cut the sound from the stadium out and give us clean 1970's style commentary feeds television stations have chickened out. Why? You can't hear anything else from the ground anyway so why not just turn the effects mics off and flip them on if there's a goal scored? They know we're going to watch no matter what happens so why bother trying to make it a pleasant experience to watch right?

2. The ball
Here's a concept, get the 32 (allegedly) best teams in the world together in one place.. and make them play with a novelty ball. It's like The Wizard with Fred Savage where they got the best video game players in the world together and made them play Super Mario Brothers 3 for the first time. At least that movie was a glorified advertisement for Nintendo and not the greatest sporting contest known to man.

And what has the ball done so far? How many spanking free kicks have you seen go in so far? Not many. Stupid idea created solely to make money for already rich arseholes.

3. The refs
Ponce about, send Australian players off, just be generally shit.

4. The TV coverage
First let me say that Les Murray is nearly my favourite Australian TV personality ever (though Ian Turpie just shades him) but right now he looks like he's lost the will to live. Anything to do with being stuck in a studio alongside Craig Foster for a month? is a whinging crunt who makes me want to stab myself in the eardrum whenever he talks.

5. Australia is in it
And haven't we come far enough as a football playing nation that we can drop the name "Socceroos"? It was an embarassing nickname in the 90's and now it's just criminal. Strange how the FFA did a deep cleanse of everything else related to 'old football' when they killed the NSL and the old clubs but somehow managed to miss dropping this humiliatingly cartoonish name from the end of our team name. Do you need a nickname for a national team? Either people are going to watch you or they're not - and as you can tell from what's going on at the moment as long as you make the World Cup then everybody will watch whether they like the sport or not.

Thursday, 29 April 2010

Photobucket Shenanigans - Part One

Plenty more where this came from. In years to come Twitpic may show up some farcical moments, but there's no way they'll keep their archives this long. The following photos from Christmas Day 2004 onwards, possibly creeping into 2006. We were young, we were stupid, and we had to carry actual cameras because phone technology was so shithouse. Onwards and upwards;

On-board shenanigans during a break in my 24-hour on-off community radio massacre with @somtum. We didn't know if other shows were going to turn up or not. When they did we pissfarted around on public transport, climbed statues and played cricket with some Indians. I was bowled by a fullish delivery that I tried to smash onto La Trobe Street.

My bookshelf in St Kilda. There's got to be something embarassing in there that I didn't consider. And look at the wild VHS collection. I think I numbered it for a blow-by-blow blog deconstruction on my life that has since been lost.

I won this tennis racket off SEN for winning a "what country is this arena in?" quiz. Came in at question 1 and ran the next ten non-stop. Didn't want it so decided to sell it on Ebay with a gimmick photo. Got me $160 you know.

Tsunami relief 20/20 cricket match between Melbourne and Collingwood. Why? I had a bonanza of a hangover I can remember that.

My ludicrous setup in St Kilda. Pure filth. That's what happens when somebody first moves out of home. Note the wildcard inclusion of Mario doing the Goatse man on the computer screen. You know that place was as big as my loungeroom but had 13 powerpoints. THIRTEEN. Why? I have no idea but you should have seen my power bill.

And here's what I did with all those powerpoints. This sat right next to my bed for 18 months and did untold damage to my brain.

The St Kilda wall. Magnificent collection of posters (all now lost sadly), but an absolutely disgraceful uneven placement. Young AND stupid.

Sadly lost graffiti at the corner of Gertrude and Nicholson Street, Fitzroy. Sound advice.

Ahh me and my first car. Poor old cubed Pierre. And yes, I already had an obsession with wearing masks but had not yet discovered the Mexican wrestling variety.

A really old one here. Scanned from a page in my year 7 school journal in response to homeroom arseclown Old Man Hale declaring himself "your bored teacher" after I wrote a scathing review of our bullshit school camp.

He's totally fucking that kid in the ear, but do you ever hear about that when they're discussing how bad a president he was?

The mini golf course at Wobbies World, taken when Somtum, Jelly and I jumped the fence to see what was left of the place fifteen years after it closed. The answer was everything. On the way out some ginger challenged us and refused to respond when I asked if he was Wobbie Jr. A few weeks later they bulldozed nearly everything. QUALITY TIMING.

You can tell how old this piece of blasphemy was not just from the fact that the Pope has died in the meantime, but because of that FUCKING ANCIENT IPOD! Another reason why I was loyal to the Creative Zen in that era.

Did I mention that I was obsessed with doing faux sinister posers?

In the good old days when people cared South Melbourne fans used to run to the fence in celebration when the side scored a goal. In a fit of contrary behaviour I decided to go the other way when they scored a winner from a spanking late free kick against St Albans.

Part two following... at some point in the next five years.

Sunday, 18 April 2010

The Bigger The Headache, The Bigger The Pill

Greetings to our friends from the north, former Roys and ex-Bears fanatics. I’d like to confess that I have a shameful love of Dare to Beat the Bear, but sadly we’re not here to do an in-depth dissection of theme songs – maybe another time. What I have been asked here for is to preview our side of next Saturday’s nights match. Now, you join the Melbourne Football Club at a very interesting time. Two wins a row, youngsters flying with confidence, equal with the ledger after round 4 for the first time since 2005. Roll on September eh? Well, maybe not. Strength of schedule is a stat that doesn’t get nearly enough coverage in AFL, and right now ours shows that the teams we’ve beaten are a combined 0-8.

When you’ve been belted from pillar to post for three years you’ll take a battling win over a team of fading cripples and a nine goal result against the AFL’s crisis club of the week but it’s nothing to rush to TAB Sportsbet and get excited about. Having said that there’s nothing surer than some muppet having a grand on us winning the flag during this week.

I can see how the United Nations of Brisbane are unbeaten at the right end of the ladder (though tell me you’re not at least slightly worried that it could all come crashing down like a house of cards at any time), and I’ll admit to having pangs of man love every time one J. Brown comes on my television, but if you’d told me after the round one DEBACLE against Hawthorn that we’d be facing off with you only outside the eight on percentage I’d have howled you down and tipped a table over in anger. Of course only sides who have won two spoons in a row (or are about to - hello Richmond!) actually care about ladder positions after four rounds, but still we’ve come a long way since the slop served up in round one caused some (mainly me) to dive for the record books to find out where we’d sit in the line-up of teams who had ‘won’ three spoons in a row. Now we sit a Ricky Petterd fingernail away from being 3-1 and there are positives all over the shop.

But can we take the positives shown against a criminally disinterested Collingwood and the two bottom sides of the competition and translate them into a decent performance against an unbeaten side with near unlimited scoring potential? Probably not enough to win, but I’m happy enough to go along next Saturday night in the knowledge that we’ll see more things to like for the future.

Obviously the major concern is the twin towers of terror Fev and JB. Luckily when coming up against a team with attacking options out the wazoo we’ve actually got a half decent backline. We’ve copped our fair share of poundings over the last few years but I’d argue that’s more to do with getting smashed in the middle of the ground than anything else. I shudder to think what would have happened to us without the likes of Warnock, Frawley, Rivers, Garland and – before his controversial conversion to a ruckman/forward/reserves player – The Stefan Martin Experience.

The Tiges didn’t do too badly against us last week, but if you take out the shots from free-kicks, the wildly speculative bombs that came off and a handful of crumbed goals they were pretty well held. This week, though, offers something different altogether.

At least Bradshaw is gone and won’t use us as his personal punching bag this year (lest we forget him ruining Nathan Carroll’s career so spectacularly that the buffoon with the rubbish hair went from All-Australian contender to getting arrested for punching on with the cops in a WA pub in just a couple of short years), though Fev is a fair replacement for the job. God knows what, if anything, is going through that man’s head at any given time but there’s no doubt that the one thing he’s good for is kicking goals. He’s fairly handy at stitching us up as well, even if you take out the seven he got against us when the tank was in fifth gear near the end of last year he’s plundered us for 29 goals in nine other starts. Even though he’s playing second fiddle to Brown so far this season I don’t like our chances of keeping them both quiet enough to keep you to a score we can match. I’d suggest Rivers might come back in for Garland and will tag in and out on Fev duty with James Frawley.

A look at Brown’s stats show that he’s played less games against Melbourne than any other club in the competition. In fact until he kicked six against us in R15, 2007 he’d never had more than one in a game. Since then he’s gone 2, 5, 5 and is playing absolutely out of his skin this year. It could be time for him to have a big day out against us and I’d expect Warnock to get him, but at the same time I’d love to see Frawley get a crack at the job. He slaughtered Brett Burton for the last three quarters of our game against Adelaide and is rapidly emerging as the best player in our defence. Riewoldt probably just had the better of him last week but if he’s going to step up to the next level he’s going to have to take on some of the big hitters eventually. Warnock on the other hand is the kind of guy that nobody has ever heard of unless you follow us but has finished 4th and 5th in the B&F over the last couple of years. Not much competition admittedly, but it shows how dependable he is. Not bad for somebody who was seconds from being out the door until Dean Bailey showed up.

As for our forward line I don’t think you’ve got too much to be worried about. This is the side that yesterday romped to eight goals in the first quarter for the first time since Round 20, 2000 and then followed it up by kicking none in the second. Between Ricky Petterd, Matthew Bate, Brad Green and Col Sylvia there’s the stirrings of a good attack but they’re not quite there yet. Needs one big bastard in the mould of Brown/Hall/Bradshaw to go up there and lead from the front. Petterd is trying his guts out, and getting some good results, but he’s not big enough to lead the line of a top eight team. It’s not inconceivable that we could kick another decent score, but

Meanwhile in a useless stat from Ridiculous Fact Corner, we have as many Queenslanders on our list now as we have had combined in the rest of our history. You can have Brad Miller and Jake Spencer back and Joel MacDonald (you may remember him) is doing pretty well but I’m quite keen on Petterd and Rohan Bail so you and the Gold Coast can stay well away from them thanks very much.

One place I think we can at least break even is the midfield. Mark Jamar has gone from world class spud to super stud so quickly I don’t think even he knows it yet, and for the last three weeks he has almost single handedly dominated the centre. Though having said that we’re in more trouble than the early settlers if he goes down during the game because we’ve been running with some very ordinary pinch hitters as back-up. At the big Russian’s feet lie the back from the dead James McDonald and a grunt work division consisting of Brent Moloney (pending the results of the Match Review Panel spinning their suspension wheel of fortune), Nathan Jones, Cameron Bruce (don’t be fooled by Supercoach scores, he’s struggling) and Clint Bartram. Jack Grimes and Aaron Davey give much needed class off the half-back line, and Joel Mac has fit in well without setting the world alight so far. On paper we lose the in the centre, but there’s enough in that lineup – as well as the emerging top end of the draft table duo SCULLGOVE – to argue that if Jamar can get hitouts to advantage we can get the ball forward. What happens when it gets there is the issue – and that’s where we’re going to be tripped up.

With the Lions playing in Melbourne for the first time this year except ‘humorous’ comments from the crowd on the subject of Fev’s many indiscretions. Take a drink every time one of them is actually funny and you’ll be stone cold sober by the final siren while Fev will probably have a matchwinning five goals. The other angle to watch is how Travis Johnstone is received. When we traded him there were murmurings of discontent and a bit of internet anguish but you won’t hear anybody upset with the deal now that Grimes – picked with the selection traded for TJ – is absolutely tearing it to shreds off halfback. Looks like the classic win/win for me, we’ve got a ten year player and future captain, TJ gets to play in a winning team and contend for a flag and Collingwood ended up getting stooged with Cam Wood. Everyone’s a winner except the Pies, and that’s to be celebrated.

Your wildcard player of the night to watch out for is young Jordie McKenzie – he turned down an offer to join the Crows in the off-season in order to stay on our rookie list and has delivered big time. Great tackler, great competitor and probably the happiest man in the world that he didn’t choose to move to Adelaide just to play in their worst side ever.

So, the Lions to win fairly comfortably but I’d like to think we’ll at least give you some anxious moments. Brisbane by six goals.

Friday, 26 March 2010

TSP's Top 5 real life entrances

I've done my fantasy list, now how about the real ones.

With apologies to Flair and Fedor who I ripped off for my list, these are the wildest songs ever to be used upon entering the ring for any sport.

'The Million Dollar Man' Ted DiBiase - Sing your own song despite having no discernable talent.

Stone Cold Steve Austin - Start your theme song with a wild sound that is instantly recognisable and the crowd are sure to go bananas the moment it hits.

Mirko 'Cro Cop' Filopovic: Wild Boys - The only person ever to seriously get away with coming out to a Duran Duran track.

Wanderlei 'The Axe Murderer' Silva: Sandstorm - 90's teeny bopper club track used to wild effect by total killing machine.

Georges St Pierre: Rohff - Dirty House - The costume kills me every time.

Wednesday, 24 March 2010

TSP's Top 10 entrance tracks

When called upon to choose your entrance music it's easy to be boring and go straight for the Eye Of The Tiger single. But then you'd be a boring bastard.

Fact of the matter is that you're never going to beat Apollo Creed's entrance to his fight against Drago in Rocky IV so you're always one step behind;

But that's not to say you shouldn't at least have a crack. We don't all have to die in the centre of the ring after being pounded into unconsciouness by a communist superman. Rocky should have thrown in the towel, but there was nothing wrong with Apollo's entrance. In fact given the chance would you not go back in time and having James Brown sing you into the room? Unless he was busy leading police across three states in a harrowing car chase after threatening a room full of people with a shotgun because somebody used his private toilet.

So now, in the red and blue corner, weighing in at [FAR TOO MUCH] from Melbourne, Australia - fighting out of Truth Or Consequences, New Mexico, The Mothership Connection will be appearing tonight to the following music;

For mine one of the great openings, perfect to walk out and pose to. You've all heard this a thousand times, so instead we present the 8-Bit NES version that will play in the TSP video game.

The only way you could get any more sleazy 80's would be to come out to Unskinny Bop, and that's just wrong. See also Kickstart My Heart, just for the line "skydive naked from an aeroplane".

German terror concept album in tabloid entrance shock. Creepingly sinister.

As used by Feder Emelianenko, this track is like the evil cousin of Sadeness by Enigma. One was the soundtrack to a million babies being conceived, this one is like the music from a child's nightmare. Terrifyingly awesome.

Because everyone needs at least one gimmick song option, and where better to get one than from the best movie ever made. Also gives you the option of being introduced as "direct from hell..." like in the movie.

American Psycho samples FOR THE M'FING WIN. Well, a soundalike doing quotes that aren't even in the movie, but close enough. Nobody will know, get amongst it.

From the end of The Good, The Bad and The Ugly. There's a reason that Metallica use this as a walk-on track - it's FUCKING EPIC. Could you get away with walking down the aisle to this? If so I'm reversing my previous views on marriage and aisles. See also Dance Of Knights by Profokiev.

Famously used as the theme song of "Nature Boy" Ric Flair for almost thirty years you'd never get away with ripping him off, but by christ this is near perfection.

Pure epic. Sure, it's Nazi music par-excellence and the man himself was an anti-semite of renown but forget that and let's talk about that scene in Apocalypse Now. So not only do you get the sound of the end of the world, but the sound of the end of the world merged with helicopters machine gunning people down with gay abandon. You can't get a more sinister combination than that. WINNER.

Pure Rotterdam gabba hardcore injected with quotage from the Drill Sergeant in Full Metal Jacket. One of my all-time favourite movie characters barks orders over a positively evil sounding track. Plenty of crowd friendly lines too. Good luck getting it past the censors but.

I'd like to say there should be more theme songs in the world. You should get to walk into your office, into a train, out of the shower to a song. But what happens when you give people a choice of what song they want to represent them? You get fifteen idiot cricketers coming out to Summer of '69, it just doesn't work. Just listen to somebody's phone when it goes off, the ringtone is basically a randomly occuring theme song that people choose to represent them. And what do we get? 200 people in a train carriage blaring out Get Shaky. Pox. Be epic with your ringtones I say.

Saturday, 20 March 2010

Win a Motza

Ways this video gives back to the community;

1. The black bars across his eyes
2. The dramatic flourish to get rid of it
3. The fact that he's wearing a tux
4. The farcical shower of cash
5. The way the thumping drums kick off the jingle... See more
6. The term "motza"
7. The clapping
8. The jaunty synth
9. The surprised look on his face when he gets thrown the ball
10. The random line up of games and the option to bet $500 in 1983 money
11. The ending of WIN A MOTZA

Tuesday, 16 February 2010

TSP's Corporate Love Day Spectacular 2010

(Catch up with 2009 if you missed it)

Well, I wasn't going to it this year. How many times can you sit down and waste two or three hours furiously retyping the bizarre bleetings of hornbags, depressed bastards and long distance stalkers?

BUT, in a great 21st century "how good is the internet?" moment the Herald Sun have decided to waste precious bandwidth by putting all the messages online. You'll also note they kept the same trannie mascot as last year. You'll also note that the quality of spelling in this country has become worse than me on Twitter. So, two days late but here we go nonetheless.

To give you something to listen to you have the choice of the three of the most romantic songs ever;

Mystifying Messages
Chickie Faye will and you Libby be were my 100km girlfriend? apart so Faye much was fun travelling kiss 100kmh kiss and frigme Libby 1 year! 25 kmh Bellagio if Bronx Faye steps stops ponytail halfway pretty. _ UTS xx.

Howappy Balentine! I lub u wun hundered million. U are my beth fwen. Meith....Lub Alwayth and Foweba Cowatt, Sito ana Hebi. I tiyad. Hickle et. No not. [I'm not convinced that hasn't been run through faulty text recognition software - 1.0]

My Gift from.. "LORD KING JESUS CHRIST" I Love You ETERNALLY My Mighty Man Of GOD. Your Wife For Life ANNA xxx

Careful! Water dwagons play on dis woad! I luv ya even though we grump sometimes! Luv ur Bunnynose with a Dino Bump!

Happy Valentine's Day. Can't wait to the day it's just me and you on the dance floor.Love u forever and always your one and only bubz. MUSKELTEARS FOREVER XOXO

You are number 1. (heart) Cameron

My turtle, my poodle, my chicken, dear boo boo .. I loves yous gutses to the moon and back .. MORE than yesterday, but not as much as tomorrow .. You know you are my favourite person in the whole wide world .. Forever and ever, more than ever, I'm yours. Love, ME

I love you girls, I hope you love me me. Let's go out for dinner soon, just us 3. Maybe we can hang out& watch tv? Dahloo

INDOCID - UR A PSYCHO baby! Surprise visitors for ya soon MF Cya GDH Love ya Sweetie x

Only 7 weeks to go babycakes to the wedding of the year! can't wait to make you my wife but today relax and enjoy the island with your manfriend, love davo

I am as smitten today as I was the day I saw you standing outside the MCG in your Saints jumper and your blonde hair wavy from the rain. You make me feel lucky every day. I love a forever kind of way. alicake

I love you for the qualities that make you so unique. - Murat.

H is for Holmesglen Horse, A is for Albury, Y is for Yoghurt, D is for Diabetes, E is for Earlobes & N is for Nippy's. Happy Valentine's Day! Love U! Love Gav & Locky


You are the pop in my corn, the bristle in my brush, the step in my ladder, the suds in my soap, you are the raisin in my bun and the pooh on my shoe. Will you be the Tex to my Johnny?

My BFF I miss that first week we got together. All the sms's, flirting, the songs that meant so much to us (Lionel Ritchie) and the unit that holds all our memories (the skirt!!). We felt so safe back then. I hope that one day in a few years we can wake up together in the morning. Love always Queen.

Love is like a lump of gold; hard to get and hard to hold. Of all the girls I've ever met, you're the one I can't forget. I do believe that God above, created you for me to love. He chose you from all the rest, because He knew I would love you the best

You smell like jam donuts and make me ROFL my face off! You're so adorable, I'm gonna wrestle and smoosh you :P

It's taken 21 years for me to get it right, I hope you appreciate this when I see you tonight. 4 kids and lots of stress, our love always passes the test. I love everything about you, even your snoring, life with you is never boring.

Baby, u mean to me what that carpark means to that volkswagon! Happy 1st Valentine's day spunk, the Cranklepot and I love u very much! hehe Love L

Hey ya big poof. You've brightened up my life and you bring a smile to my face whenever I think of you. Happy Valentine's. - Donna Singh

Dear Megan, You continue to excite, interest and pleasure me after all these years. Lots of love PW

Marrying my soulmate was the best thing I've ever done. I love adventuring through life with my baby bear. I ruv you, honey bunny. Lets add to our pack!

MUTTSTER - Mutt mutt you're so fine, mutt mutt you blow my mind, go muttster (clap clap, clap) go muttster (clap clap, clap)............ Love - Mutt

You are a goomba and a nuoko

I love you so much. I know you can get back to training soon and finish Ironman South Africa with me. All my love Joey xxx

Happy Valentine's Day to you and your family Love - Eileen Kimpton, Riverlea Hostel.

To my V, N and overseas H May piddlyDAK live long and prosper. Lkve _ your J. xoxo P.S. Wanna get some H.J's?


Your happiness means the world to me. If that means I have to eat salad, I will eat salad. Your Buby. [DON'T EAT THE FUCKING SALAD YOU SELLOUT - 1.0]

The man who believes he has 22 Wives! 20 of them are Bi's 22-20 = #2 Ezzalenko.

When I first met you, we shook hands, instantly I thought, where have you been all my life? Then some months later, you said those exact words to me. I feel blessed to have had a special night with you. I know you're my Soulmate, it may be a bumpy ride until we finally hold each other every night. Let's be patient as I know in my heart, we'll be fine. Yes, You're hot !!! Love - Kaz

99 999

I love you a zipillion percent

Sickening Nicknames
I'm retiring this section next year. These idiots come up with the same rubbish every time.

Angry Angus ("You tantalize my taste buds")
Anne of Greengables
Baby Boy
Baby Bunting
Baby Girl [+ about 5000 other variations on baby]
Beautiful Boombi
Benjamin Button
Big Dog
Big Fat Wombat
Big Nut Brown Hare
Bossy Boots
Bright Eyes
Bubby Giggle
Bumble Bee
Carrot Stick
Chicken Bum
Chocolate Buddy
Chop Chop Hunny Bunny
Chubba Bubba
Darling Boof
Drummer Boy
Emmy Sunshine
Eve Hotpants
Fat Boy
Flossy Bear
Golden Earring
Great Hunk of Spunk
Honey Bear [+ 5000 other versions of the honey theme]
Itchy Bumface
Jet Pilot
Liquid Gold
Little Hummingbird
Little Peep
Little Pup
Marky Sparky
Miss Stretchy
Miss Sunshine
Moo Moo
Mr. Big
My Little Crawler
My True Penguin
Oinky Lao Po
Peter Squishy
Pino King
Poo Poo Head
Princess Ballbreaker
Scarlet Pimpernel
Sexy Legs
Sexy Lil Spunkbubble
Sugar Plum Fairy
Sweaty Cheeks
The Roopracorn
Ticklish Tiger
Turkish Delight
Watermelon Man
Wee Monkey
Your Lady Gaga
Your Little Beyonce

Advertising Genius Section
Sadly doing this online means I can't see the advertising, which means I'll never know if they decided to run the NOTHING SAYS LOVE LIKE A HUMMER ad from 2009.

Celebrity Action
my handsome driver, eternally yours. Miss Daisy xx

Rotten Poetry
Trucks, spiders & black goats, Gouldian's with blue dilute throats. Coffee, red meat & fire mouth fishes, crisp white undies & Koby's kisses. Head butts, bites & scratches from Hades, We'll have really cute babies. Happy V.D. My Honey Pot, I sure do love you a hell of a lot. Your betrothed Mandy XX

Til now you hold my heart. You're full of love, warmth and grace. You make the world a better place. You try so hard to make me see, the much better person I could be. For so long you have been my fiancee, I hope I haven't lost you from my life. I can see it all so very clear, things you thought I didn't hear. It feels you are so far away, wish I could hold your hand today. As I try to work things through, I realise how much I admire you. I will always love you

Yyou are truly my best friend
I will love you always till the end
These words include the usual junk
Except the promises I make when I'm drunk
Rest assured wherever we roam
It won't be long before our new home
A special world for you and me
Includes a bond only we can see

BETH - Interfamily weekend with your fam. A Valentine's poem from your man...oh damn. This can't be him, you're sure to think... No it's true, Al's poems they stink

BRENDEN - You are my tender vegetarian schnitzel. Your lovely red hair makes me want to whitzle. Lots of love - Your Scottish Thitzle

I wish that you could see through my eyes, so then my pleasure would be yours, the rapture of our dalliance become the elysium of coverture. My Concubine divine, none other has the grace and wit, nor enchanting contours to compare.

If love was a minute, then I love you an hour. If love was a petal, I'll give you the whole flower. Love may not be an easy thing to define, But know in your heart, you are my only Valentine.

Maxy is here right by my side, he's under my wing as my joy and pride, you are here too-right in the middle, I'm waiting for the next one so as to complete this diddle. [Surely they actually wrote 'riddle' - 1.0]

Getting older can be a pain, But with you along, I can't complain. Despite the things that we go through, I know I'll never stop loving you

Should any soul, this earth walk Imagine but a 10th of the joy Your love instills in me, Ever more they shall be doomed to live, but mortally wounded Knowing never to feel such pure delight. Jealous, even those who are jealous not. I will attempt to inscribe in ink, to carve and record that which feel, to cause such jealousy not, but to give hope for others, false as it is. For no being in this life, could do what you do to me. Most precious are those pre dawn moments, I watch you sleep. You are my dreams. Sleep drowsed, dishevelled, feet then touch and entwine. Held by you, encircled, flooded memories of that first embrace, you know the one I mean. To slowly wake together a new dawning day, feeling your touch I inhale you, your breath I breathe. Daily you are my rock, My knight, my rescuer, the other side of a formidable wall, determination, your battlefield skill, persistence your weapon, A crusade you will not lose and you rescue me literally. My dream giver, predicting all that I covet, all that I hope, toiling to deliver my every desire. My genie, the wishes you grant, infinite. I am happy, I am in love, and the day ends and we lay together again. Entwined falling into dreams together, time an irrelevance, it is then, it is now, it is always. Forever - Colleen.

Times are tough at the moment that is for sure, We have two kids now and we're not having four. I know getting no sleep can bring you close to tears, But that's no excuse for drinking my beers. I'm sorry that I can't get you a brand new bed, But I promise you this - I'll get you a nice bottle of red Love - Red.

Roses are red, violets are blue, I've only been gone for five minutes, how about you? Will you be my Valentine?!

How Orion doth glow In nightly skies, Its stars The Hunter ethereal Of noble eclat Low o'er venery eyes Of fires Made in number eternal. Helen, thank you for making me realise what love truly is. Best wishes for this year.

You're my bestie and I love you so much, And you make me squeal when you grab my hand. Jane you're my soulmate and I love you to bits, And there's nothing better than sucking your toes. This Valentine's poem I hope makes you smile, Keeps me in the good books for a little while. Well here we are at the end, I love you Minty you're my best friend.

Loving you is like loving the sea thinking I am in control then finding the waves crashing over me I wonder if I should give up sailing before I drown in you?

It's amazing that after all this time, each day, my love for you is stronger as the wonderful length of time we have been together grows longer. And right now I want to tell everyone and make it official, that after all these years together, you are now even more beneficial! Love always! Mark

You have a tattoo of my name on your rear, But of needles I have a fear, So I did the next best thing, I engraved your name upon my ring. My name's got bigger so to speak, And as it's romance that I seek, This verse is butt tongue in cheek

Roses are red Shamrocks are green Once again you and I Will make a good working team

In my own romantic way, I just want to say, that I live and breathe you every day. The key to my heart was yours from the start, with loving bliss I give you this Kiss. Just by chance should you accept my advance, come with my for a life of romance.

Even though we are far apart, You are always in my heart. Soon in our igloo- just you and me, Happy Eskimos forever being silly mushy peas.

I see a distant tree next to a brook in a field of flowers. I see you from afar standing in your white dress blowing in the wind. You are the most beautiful person in all the world to me. I walk up to you and I kiss you softly and you smile and I whisper, I love you so much will you be my Valentine.

Passionate lady, the queen, my Maree. Closer we are, more closer to be. Bright sunshine of love, star light of desire Inside I am me, beside you I'm fire. Love all ways. Mr Speechley

Unto my twin flame and our son Zadkiel whom awaits patiently with me for the veil of ignorance to lift. And unto Sarah for her assumption of what true love light and God's Will really is. Happy Valentine's Day to all that shine, force their light, that the blind may see that it's love that honestly conquers all, not lust, nor greed, nor jealousies or vanities. God Bless you all

I never placed a loving ad for all the world to see: That's the incredible effect you have on me. I'm proud to be yours and to share our life together, Knowing our love will unite us forever. Happy Valentine's Day Honne!

As our hearts bleed & our eyes weap, the aches and pains seem to never end, our dreams and goals are set in concrete, in our minds, and we wish to achieve them together. The future is in reach, it's an arms length away. That pot of gold, full of love and happiness is at that foreseeable day. Love you so much my special one. Your Knight xo

Roses is violets, Reds is blue. If I sound confused, It's because I love you. What a good friend you are to me, and what a better person you have helped me to be.

It is only with the heart that one can see rightly. What is essential is invisible to the eye. Only from the heart can you reach the sky.

TERRY H (Hairy Monster)
I just want you to know, I think you're grouse, For building us such a beautiful new house, It would be good if you could finish it though, And give me lots more money to blow. Nearly forgot your message today, Can you imagine what Gary would say. Happy Valentine's Day darling. Lots of love 6 days and 7 nights.

Pisstake Central
To everyone who reads our messages each year, Happy Valentine's Day from us.

Stalkers Corner
I don't know why I didn't realise this earlier. I love you so much. I miss you. Let's reignite the flame we once had. I know it's not too late. There is so much more for us to accomplish together. I LOVE YOU - David

I think I saw you at Southbank but not sure. It was Wed. Jan. 20th, 2010 at around 1.30 pm. The penny dropped when I walked on. I still think of you sleepless in Seaford - CATHERINE

I loved you from the very start and even though you broke my heart I will always love you - TRICKS

U r my heart & soul without u i live in pain. Please dont give up on us we can get through this we always do. Things will b so much different this time i never want to lose you ever again love always James xoxo

Roses are Red, Violets are Blue, I look forward to my final event later this year with you! [Sounds like he's planning murder - 1.0]

No longer together, always thinking of you. Forever in my heart just a phone call away. - Scuba Steve.

DOROTHY LOUISE It's been a long time, but do you fancy a coffee. Reply by Public Notices. - David John [Nothing says love like a direct order - 1.0]

My darling Helen, even after 38 years the sadness still fills my heart when I think of the day that you told me it was over between us. I am so sorry that I ruined 2 years of your life, and knowing that you would never want me back is something I have to live with morning and night for the rest of my life. You were my first Helen, my best friend, and the first and only girl I ever loved. Not a day goes past that I don't say that I love you. I will love you forever my darling Helen, I will love you until the day I die. Your perfume "Fidji" keeps you near to me always. _ Your loving Sweetpea G XXX

Although it has been nearly two years since you left after 30 years together, you are in my thoughts every minute of every day. I love you more now than I ever have and I always will. I pray every day that one day you may come home. I will never give up on you, Jacqui. All my love - Paul

I know that Jodie I've done you wrong, I send my thoughts to keep you strong. One day I still hope that we may be, As I love you and deep down I know you love me

Leigh at Broadford, please contact Claire at Doncaster East at niie at

We met at CHILLOUT on Sunday. You wore a suit and a man's felt hat. My senses must have treed away for my mind seemed not to see, this awesome lady, who held my coffee for me! Again I'll bring my whippet from Blackwood to the fair, then perhaps my Angel, please make sure you're there.

I'm sorry I walked out on you, at the time I was angry, In my heart you'll always be, to remind me of my stupidity. Please call, your beast.

To the very hot one. Nice style. Can we talk please. Same place, time and day, or Tuesday? kxxk

Tall, dark, handsome, 5.2.10 @ 8.50 a.m. Hob - Melb. Be my Valentine!! You're hothothot and I'm cutecutecute. - Stripey Girl.

Bop, I miss you. Please call me. Bep xoxo


Just Plain Creepy
Aaron (hearts) Rochelle
To the best Mummy and Daddy in the World, have a happy Valentine's Day - Love Abbie XO

Hope you get one today - Ros


I love you - Your first wife Jo

Meet me all the way. I want you in my life forever. Forever is nothing without YOU.Love Always YOUR COUGAR.xxxxxx

You came, you overwhelmed. Your squeals and size will never be forgotten

Dearest Creep Number 2 - Happy Valentines Day - I love watching you creep on others. Next time I hope I get to share the bottom bunk with you - Much love x

`If you love something set it free, If it comes back it's yours to keep' and I'm back. Happy Valentine's Day. - Juliette. x x x

I know your scared about the future. I believe it's meant to be. I hope time makes you realise what you want. I Love You. Always and forever - Jase xx

You may not be my Valentine, but you sure are the best Dad in the world. - Lisa

You're the BEST son in the whole wide world. We love you. Love - Mum and Dad

Little Ghost, when you accepted that ring upon which my loneliness is written, why did you not say... my love waits for me? Because, adored one, I wait for you.

Youre still as gorgeous as the day I 1st laid eyes on you! Luv always! Mel xx Daddy lots of seal kisses for u! Luv u nearly as much as I luv Mr Spotty! :-) Zoe xx

I love you more than all the history books I am so very proud of my gorgeous boy Happy Valentine's Day Lots of Love - Mum

WOW, "What's going on there"? We did it! More than 20 years since I left your side, we are back together as one and this time 4ever. See dreams do come true! I can't wait to get old with you as a diabolical couple truly made in Heaven! Kisses and lovin' in Paris and the Mile High Club, "BRING IT ON" Baby! Happy Valentine's Day my gorgeous man!! Love always _ "YOUR Holden V8 Girl" xoxoxo

It is written

I'm sorry for all those vet visits Happy Valentine's Day. Love Sadie. (woof woof)

Q. Am I your Lord? (Will you marry me?) A. Love is a slave to the heart not the soul. (Yes I will) - DHJ456.

Flag for 2010 - Paula 5034 [She must have the most tragic love life of anyone on here - 1.0]

And that's it... Votes on your favourite are open until February 13th 2011.