Thursday, 31 October 2019

2019 Halloween Finds.

This post is late; I like posting my Halloween finds earlier, but it's been such a hectic few months.

I started my Halloween shopping from the beginning of August; very unusual,
as Tk Maxx starts getting the Halloween stock from the end of August.

Every year TMaxxxx is my winner of Best Halloween shop and great for the essential ghoulish decor. Yet, this year has been disappointing for choice. On the plus side, I've seen more shops selling decent Halloween homewares.

I haven't purchased too much, as I'm running out of space.

I only purchased a couple of things this year from Tk Maxx

A skull sugar spoon, to get me in the spooky mood.

A Halloween tin that is now my hat; I loved the design.

The is the year, best Halloween items has gone to Poundland.

I picked up some excellent, useless trinkets, but they look great. My favourites things we're the boo pumpkins. I grabbed a couple of cat-themed things




I found this great Halloween sign that looks great in my kitchen.


I found a skull jar that lights up perfect for my bathroom.



I found excellent items in The flying Tiger




I purchased bat light and a pumpkin tea light with a witches hat; I couldn't resist it.  I also bought a bat light thing, as I developed a taste for bats at the moment.


Here it is in my living room



A bat tote bag to complement my battiness. 



Next, I purchased a few Halloween accessories from Primark.





I love a good bargain and found these on sale for £3 in total.  It's a bat pillow and pumpkin garland.



I purchased some accessories while in Glasgow. 



The next stop was Home Bargains

I bought a pack black glittery ld candles, an old black kitty candle thing and batty plant thing. 


My favourite Halloween item of this year was from Next. They produced a few sophisticated spooky country chic items. My favourite was the country cottage Halloween theme sign that matched my kitchen scheme sublimely.





Saturday, 19 October 2019

Night in Glagow

Last month, I had an impromptu night in Glasgow, I visited as Black Friday advertised on her social media, she was organising a meet up in Kelvin Grove Park.

I decided to book up; I treat myself to first class, it worked out, slightly more than the standard type, it meant I had complementary to beverages and nibbles.

I started at Ncl train station in taking advantage of the first-class lounge with fueling myself much need caffeine, as I was sleeping surviving from nightshift and two and a half-sleep. It was bliss having a latte in the quiet part of the lounge with nobody around.




I head to grab my train station; I found the large seat that dwarfed me. I kicked my boots off, plug my earphones in and enjoyed the glorious North East scenery passing me. 







I felt like I was living the high life being offered complimentary beverages with galore tea, sports, soft drinks, I couldn't resist a tipple of my favourite poison gin and lemonade. I even got a delectable lunch of Chicken casserole.



Sadly, the journey ended in Edinburgh; I transferred for the train to Glasgow. It took another 40minutes, but it was a quick journey. 




I arrived in Glasgow, and I decided to check-in to my hotel rather than later lugging my bag around. I walk to the hotel. 


On my way to the hotel, I went for some quick shopping. I discovered Eurasia Crafts; it also included Osiris I had a gander in; it sold arrays of gothic and ethnic fashions, jewellery, accessories, home decor, Wicca supplies and insense. It had a great selection of items. I purchased some harem style trousers. 



 Absinthe 6 a fantastic gothic shop with a plethora of fashions, shoes, jewellery, bag,  accessories and a small selection of home decor. The shops are next to each other there definitely worth purchasing.



I followed the Halloween UK on Facebook; someone shared Halloween stocks from Primark, I stocked up on Halloween supplies. 




I booked the Alexander Thompson hotel cost £56. It was. Convenient in terms of location, as I was meeting my friend who lives on the West Coast of Scotland. I arranged to meet on Saturday morning.





I felt the urge to revisit the Necropolis; I  first visited Glasgow. I was extremely fascinated by the beauty of the place. On the visit, the cemetery has a different vibe with a windy, sunny day. The oranges reds were just sublime enhanced the beauty of the area. 



This time, I spent most of my time behind the far back part of the Necropolis, I hadn't seen this part before, on my previous visit. It had light energy.


 I only had an hour left to explore as the necropolis shut at 4:30 pm. I headed back to the entrance. I took some photo of St Mungo's Cathedral. 


A photo of me.


Next, I went to walk around St Mungo Glasgow cathedral. It was a rarity of Scottish medieval Gothic cathedral. St. Mungos. St Mungo was the patron saint of Glasgow. His name was Kentigern and mungo was an affectionate pet name. The temple was believed to built on St Mungo's crypt. The Cathedral was laid in 1137 by King David and consecrated in 1197. 



I had a walk around





Afterwards, I was getting hungry. I head to a local kitty cafe for food and kitties since I was missing my cats. It was cats galore; surprisingly, it was quiet. I feel in under the spell of the kittens particular Isa, a black kitty that reminded me of Phoebe. I feel in love with a long-haired cream cat. I tried to pack a couple of the cats in my bag; sadly, I was stopped at the door. I was only joking, very tempted to take a couple. 






After seven, I was feeling knackered; I went back to the hotel for a quiet time and in desperate need of a shower. It was great just having a cup of tea and biscuits. 

I decided to find cider, yeap; I search several pubs, guess what no settling in the Raven, a real fab ale bar with some great choices, check it out  I opted for half a pint of Bad Kitty, I don't like beer, but Bad Kitty's a smooth creamy stout, well renowned for being awesome amongst beer drinkers. 


I finished up to the left on the hunt for cocktails, I heard a band playing it was a Boston Irish theme bar in Glasgow, with an acoustic guitar playing Irish Rebel sings so. I popped my head had a couple of cider and black, yeap, that desperate there something holistic about drinking Wood Pecker.  I had ended up getting the full Glasgowien welcome and was invited to join, they some of the loveliest people I've met just fun, loud and gregarious. It can be a bit intimidating, but when you're from Newcastle, it's home and its as though I have a universal passport, with war cry I love the Geordies. Its great experience. We chatted about cats; I love it big hard Scotts talking about furry little friends and dogs we exchanging photos. 




Feeling like a zombie, after five hours of sleep, I shuffled to breakfast, and I was the second person there, quite how I like it.  I sat stuffing myself with four to five-course of breakfast. I 'm a greedy sod: not the best breakfast, a good hearty one to start the day off. 

 At 10, I met up with my friend, who lives on the West coast of Scotland, we hadn't seen each other since June were flying from Glasgow with the other half. We spent most of the morning catching up on life, so drank copious amounts of teas at our favourite community cafe. We had a quick gander in my favourite shops. 


Afterwards, I headed to the Kevlingrve Museum near the brew dog the meetup spot for the Black Friday's picnic. In her Black Friday fashion, she was running late and updated via social media; this seemed to heighten the anticipation. Eventually, she arrived; she had a chat with everyone. The party were led to Kelvingrove park we sat amongst a place for near the gorgeous gothic waterfall. 



Everybody gather and started to find a place to sit. I found met some love gregarious Glaswegions lasse. We started chatting and intermingling with each other as we waited for Black Friday to come around she took her time trying to talk amongst everyone, she decided to give all her admirers equal time and attention. I guess there were more people than she anticipated. Everybody was full of zeal and beguiled to finally for meeting Black Friday, as I think for most it was their first time. 




Forme, I had the ultimate experience of meeting her at WGT; she seemed so alive and relaxed, I guess it was the vibe of the festival.


For me, it was nice meeting Black Frid, y and she remembered me, so that was cool. 
gain; it was meeting all the lovely people and reliving my wild formative years of hanging out in parks — it an enjoyable afternoon with the picnic. 

Monday, 16 September 2019

Community Walk; A Bit Of Bat Spotting

So a few nights ago, I attend a community event for a bat walk.

In my area, there is a two-year project called Wild West End Newcastle. It aims to monitor and identify some specific types of animals in the West End of Newcastle; including bats. The initiative tries to get the local community involved by having weekly walks to spot the various animals.


We met at 7:30 pm in Leezers Parks car park and waited for a few minutes for more people to attend. We headed to a small area of the lake that had been cultivated to provide a habitat for insects, that may offer the ideal place to observe bats flying.



The group were given a brief introduction about bats, such as there are over 17 types of bats; in the North East alone there are was at least 10 to 12 species. When bats tend to feed after dusk, and we may see Daubenton’s bat and Pipistrelle. They mentioned that they saw a few Pipistrelles on a previous walk. They were using a bat detector that could hear the frequency of bats and how each species had the own rate. They explained the procedure for observing and recording bats.

Just as the twilight ended and the sunset finally set the groups saw a great outline of a mall bat flying amongst the skyline, which would provide one the perfect photo. Sadly, the little small fat was so fast it disappeared in the blink of an eye. 

After ten minutes, a few more bats came swooping out of the near trees, as it darkened more came swooping out, I assume ready for their breakfast. As the night progress, more could see. Until the put a gyrating of swooping with their acrobatics looks as they were dancing in the sky, it such a beautiful treat to behold; bats had a mystical quality to them with the speed of their flight they disappeared in now where. I wished I could have captivated it. It failed. 


I tried to take photos, the photos are rubbish, they worse than butterflies to photograph.  I'm going to go on another night with my proper camera. I've edited some of the phots to enhance the bat's shapes. 












I also got a couple of lovely shots of the night sky and scenery. 





Afterwards, we all had gone to the local pub for a drink, but it provided a chance to get to know some of the neighbours. It was a fun night seeing all the bats flying on the lake. 




Thursday, 12 September 2019

Bradford Litearty Festival Origins of the Outsiders: The New Goths


A few months ago, I ventured to Bradford for the cities annual literature festival. It sees the city transformed into a cultural mecca celebrating both the written and spoken word. It includes a series of events through topical discussion panels, performers, poets, readings from established authors and provides platform upcoming talent. Other forms of media such as cinema theatre and art.

The panel was led by Karl Sprachlen; the discussion explores his recent book co-authored by his wife, Beverly. The book explores the historical lingerie of goth beyond the 1970s post-punk musical aspects exploring the origins, of Germanic Goth tribes through history to the morden evolution, we understand it today. The panel also included Rosie Garland and Laura Ager, a researcher for Manchester Gothic Studies.





Bradford Cathedral hosted the discussion the venue seemed the perfect place to host the panel. It was an ungothly, but gorgeous Saturday. With an usher greeting visitors in and informing the visitors of the discussions itinerary. There were plenty of people already seated, just as eagerly awaiting the discussion.

The Dean of Bradford spoke welcoming everyone to the discussion and even making a joke about the pannel being held in a gothic space. He admitted knowing very little about goth/ gothic cultural, which I appreciated. He admitted he had read the book and found an immersive experience.

The panel began to give a small introduction about who they were and how they were both professionally and personally involved within the goth scene. They also described their own personal perspective, experience and interruption of being a goth or within their views.  Karl began a discussion on how goths and the connotations of goth cultural always being an outsider starting from the earliest of Germanic Goths and Romans right through to the present days.

  I respectfully disagree with Karl's trying to create a linear period. I personally. believe history far more complex and convoluted to create a linear narrative.  Even our current understanding of history it not the full perspective of history as it occurred.  I later met Laura who I discussed could see my point suggested you could look it in terms of linguistics, which an intriguing idea.

This lead to the discussion exploring the North and goth cultural, especially during the late 70's and '80s. A lot was based on Karl's experience of growing up during that time. He explained the music was pivotal to goth cultural, and the music was made by people and students who were poor and that Leeds at that time was a brutal city. He also discussed the history of Leeds infamous F.club.  The discussion leads to the internal and external contentions that of goth being genuinely goth. I found this part very interesting, as I tend to enjoy more social history, espcially about the goth scene rather than the academic analysis.

The conversation led to Rosie who discussed being goth claiming their names as a joke about being goth but not being goth. She also described the students of lack of money and shabby surrounding of Leeds, accommodation and Fclub influenced the music they produced. Through the use of new technology such as drum machines and synths, adding a futuristic edge to the music. I found Rosie was a great intimidator between Laura and Karl. She always seemed to bring a more balanced perspective, where my personal views were more in line with Rosie. Rosie was both lived this experiance and give a very raw honest picture of life, rather romantic notion. 

One of my favourite parts was when Karl discussed mysticism within the goth scene. He related to the Sisters of Mercy; ( Alice with which was what created the persona eldritch by accident he created). Alice is talking about mysticism, and Eldritch is laughing Alice's precious nations.

Karl continued describing the early tensions within the scene; particularly amongst the band as oame gained in popularity, while were signed to smaller labels and whether these bands were goth or not.

Karl explained by the '90s much more mainstream than in the underground days of the '80s. The music had morphed into a much darker form of black metal and doom metal with Cradle of Filth. Even Yorkshires My Dying Bride and Paradise Lost and exploring how the influence of industrial music. 

Laura introduced and explained about the Manchester Gothic Studies Programme; that looks at how gothic can be received in literature. She suggested the idea of a medieval perspective to view the world by exploring the darker sider of life through exploring urban poverty, disconnect and the north. Lara highlighted ramifications of the death of Sophie Lancaster. The legacy the Sophie Lancaster foundation politically importance in promoting diversity to prevent another unnecessary death it has there.

I found Laura seemed to have a more similar perspective to Rosie she grew up during the late '80s and early '90s. Laura brought the academic aspect of goth through the literature and the meaning it contributed to the scene. 

The Dean led the discussion onto asking about the significance and importance of the Whitby Goth Festival. Karl explained the history of the festival. Whitby was chosen in for the Bram Stoker's Dracula fictional connections. It was started out by goth cultural had gone, and a lot the goths were from the original 80's people wanted to continue listening to the bands. The weekend quickly gained international fame and was embraced by the Town's council. 

Then Karl highlighted the recent political contentions stemming in the weekend from the current formation rifts between the Whitby weekend and  Tomorrow's Ghost. They also discussed the negative aspects with the costumers who attended, the numerous photographers, had resulted in the many of older goths sticking to the fringe events. 

The Dean orientaed the debate by discussing how intrigued he had been by discussing the final aspect of the present state and the potential future of goth. It was interesting how each person had their own views and perspective.

Karl seemed to have a very pessimistic view of how the scene had evolved and seemed to lament for the first days of the goth scene in the '80s in the way he expressed his ideas. He went along his own tangent, which I couldn't quite follow.

Rosie more realistic, and offered a balanced perspective describing the superfamily aspects on social media, she also describes the go reinventing itself by utilising her recent experience from WGT. Laura again had simular views to Rosie.


The Dene initiated a Q and A for the audience with some fascinating questions. Afterwards, the Dene shared his thoughts, describing how he'd had learnt alt and gained a new insight.  The Dene thanked everyone for attending, especially to Karl, Rosie and Laura for contributing, the audience give a round of applause showing their appreciation.  

I travelled to Bradford. I felt the discussion offered me a new perspective and insight into goth cultural.  At times, the debate became too academic in places, which didn't appeal to me. I did like how the created an accessible to none's goths while covering some of the basics while keeping it orientated to the goths. 

Afterwards, I was able to have a chat with Karl, who actually remember me from meeting the last meeting, which was lovely. I had a quick chat with Rosie. I finally reached the lasses from the Festival of Gothic, that mutually follows on social media.
I'm looking forward to there next event in October. 

I purchased Karl's book and got signed. I look forward to reading it. 

Thursday, 1 August 2019

Review of WGT Part 2

The Saturday, we went to find breakfast and found a great little cafe, just a few minutes from our hotel. It doubled as a bike cafe. We kept ordering the same thing of Latte and ham toast with German cream cheese, gorgeous.

We visited the Museen im Grassi the building had an exciting fusion of art deco and cubism exterior. The museum had a fascinating exhibition where costume students were showing casing their toiles based on the historical patterns of Janet Arnolds. I was intrigued by the high-quality garments finishing it what I would inspire.








The examples of Tudor ruffles and stays.



I love the mid-18th-century costume made in the modern fabric; it has a gorgeous gothic quality. 




We headed to the  West Bad venue to see Dark Cell. They were on their European tour and played in Trillians, our local rock pub at home in Newcastle, we missed them while on holiday.  I kind like these they were an Aussie kinda black metal elements with thrash, and a heavy thunderous percussion and guitar.

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Next 


Near-Earth Orbit, I found the duo intense with their band experience used a theratrical and atmospheric quality to their dystopian sound; in the background, the band use cinematic visuals to exploring the themes of the lyrics, The group created thought provoking ideas of human destruction but, a pessimistic hope. They had an intense industrial sci-fi style keyboards, synth and modern deep the booming driving bass to emphasise potent themes.

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I attended the ethereal transcendental The Moon and Night Spirits. I feel their Hungarian Quartet has taken through a journey into the night world. Pure pleasure and spiritually uplifting experience. The band used a range of traditional range of Hungarian, world instruments with a variety of medieval medleys that were incredible used some middle eastern sounds. What I love was the band got truly into the music and enthralled with every moment of the performance.    


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The boyfriend went to Taubchenthal to William Faiths projects, I'm using his review I was told I missed a fantastic set. I saw Rosie Garland a few weeks ago in Bradford we had a quick chat about it. The Bell Weather Great set, a nice mix of the (by now) older original material, a bit of new, then finishing with real classics from The Mephisto Waltz, March Violets, Faith and the Muse.

I regret not seeing the band, I did download the Bellweather Syndicate on band camp, 

Next was Inkubus and Sukkubus, were weren't planning to see them as we've seen them twice in less six months I didn't bother to thoroughly review them. They put on a lively and gyrating performance with their mystical. It was fab seeing them on such a vast audience. I still think they were best at the Goth City Festival. 


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The final band of the night was Shadow Project 1334. It compromised the original Christian Death line in the William Faith and Eva O, along with her daughter Scarlet. In hindsight. 'm not into the deathrock as such found this such a privilege to attend It had been so hot in the venue I caught heard the band performing form outside of the Taubchenthal. From what I saw of the group put on an intoxicated performance making the audience of hunger for more with each performance. I found the band to have a compelling tumultuous sound with a mixture of post punk elements, accompanied with deep bass and booming drums.


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Sunday

I found an odd day, both The Boyfriend and I were feeling exhausted from the humidity and all the travelling from Berlin to Leipzig and the travelling from venue to venue to see bands. We kept returning to the bike cafe as they made a great breakfast.




After we had breakfast, we head headed to the Pagan Village on a packed tram, as Agra the main venue.  We headed arrived at 1:30pm, we grabbed drinks and had a quick gander before the band came. I think Pagan Village maybe the wrong the translation it reminded of the Yorvic festivals with a Nordic vibe. I was happy to find mead, I had a hard time finding alcohol I like me Germany. They don't do cider or even decent cider; I was limited to what I could drink. Besides, the heat, it was too hot for alcohol and there nothing I fancied, but I found mead the elixir of the Gods.


We mainly went to the Pagan Village to see Arhai UK based band with members from a British, Serbian and Turkish background. The group was a worldly, atmospheric, ethereal band with a female vocalist, one of the favourite niche genres. With a myriad of influences including Celtic, European, use of medieval-style instruments, tribal drums and a hint of tech enhancements adding a touch of mysticisms. I found the group sensational with the middle eastern influences, and I found a spiritually transcendental.

I had a look around the village, I had so many photos, but I accidentally deleted them, when I did master reset on mobile. I went Agra for some Goth shopping I spent quite a bit, but not as much as I had initially intended.  I was after seeing a Black Friday's WGT video about drunk shopping. I wanted a dramatic head, mainly, by Videnoir and a Gothic Kitty T-shirt. 

I came across Nox Arum, where she had some stunningly gorgeous headdresses, I fell in love with dramatic horns and feathers. I opted for the more simpler headdresses, and I brought a witches tote. 


I also checked out Videnoir couture; I didn't purchase headdress. I was after a dramatic floral style one, but I bought a stunning metal cathedral inspired waist cincher belt. 




I purchased got an old Kitty t-shirt, I've worn a few times out even to the local Goth Night, it's got some great compliments.


I even met up with Michelle; we share a mutual friend.


After shopping at Agga, I was shattered. I met up with the Boyfriend who was drinking with a few people a couple of people. We knew, and we met a lot of new people. While, in Germany, we end up at an  Irish Bar, Dhillons. I was having a lot of cocktails. It was a fab night and what we needed. I planned to see a London After Midnight; then I changed my mind and opted to see Batushka and Cradle of Filth with my boyfriend. I cancelled all my plans and got drunk on cocktails.

I had a Sex on the Beach, and it was fantastic. 



We moved to Mortzibastei; I got further inebriated on more cocktails. I decide to wear my gothic tiara to fit in more. 


Us hanging out with more alcohol and great discussion and it started to rain down on us.  



I eventually got the boyfriend to pose for selfies. We got back left and finally got back at four in the morning the latest we partied. 


Monday 


After a fantastic night, we had a late start and finished, after breakfast, we headed back to finish the exhibitions of Musem in Grassi. 


On Monday, I spent a lot of time at the Haus of Leipzig watching more post punk bands, with a lot the bands heavily influenced by Joy Division. This one the problems with a lot of post punk sounding music at the moment, everyone seems like Bloody Joy Version, it's irksome. 


The first band was Geometric Version; I wasn't sure what to make of them at first. I found the group began to grow on me. They're growing on me. I thought they were German, but they were Italian. There sound drenched of the North West England, post punk sound with an atmospheric style with a modern twist. My partner felt there were influences of the Cure

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I missed out on watching a Slice LIfe. It got too hot and uncomfortable and was in desperate need for a shower. My partner reviewed, the Belgian, Slice of Life, he found them similar to Germoatic Verison with a robust Northwest sound, felt they used more distortion than phasing, an excellent set.

I ended up back at Haus Leipzig and caught Human Tetris; A Russian upbeat, melodies in a Joy Division style. Their sound had me confused, as they sound like they came from North West England in the early '80s. An upbeat tempo with fast melodic drums, floungy guitar, rounded base and the singer with an Ian Curtis style vocals singing in his native language, added a distinctive sound.

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I can't remember the name of the band: a beautiful soprano singer, and aureus with piano, a cello, and a violin. I found very relaxing an chilling out.

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Unto the Ashes, an American band the last band of WGT. I found them a strange and peculiar group. The band have a range of the medieval-style instrument,medieval-style chants, melancholic love Ballard's with dark thoughts, and a few covers.
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T
They finished with an excellent rendition of the sisters of Mercy's Heartland.

I finally visited Sxithteen Bar, Leipzig.


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We left on Tuesday afternoon the mass exodus of the goths waiting for the train back to Berlin. It was packed going back to Berlin. We ready to go home also I was missing the girls (kitties).






2019 Halloween Finds.

This post is late; I like posting my Halloween finds earlier, but it's been such a hectic few months. I started my Halloween shopping...