Ramblings: on blogging, Max, new voices and albums

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In a moment of pure self-indulgence I wanted to ‘blog about blogging’, so forgive me, normal service will be resumed shortly and I’ll get back to the music. But it has been about a week since I started the blog and I wanted to mention a few things.

One of the main reasons I started this blog is because, just before Christmas, our family went from two to three, with the addition of Max the Yorkiepoo. He’s pretty cute:

Anyway, back to meMy lifestyle of trying to go to two or three gigs a week is going to take a bit of hammering over the next few weeks/months, and as live music is my main hobby I felt like I needed another outlet through which to channel my energies, albeit whilst at home. So that gave birth to Astral Penguins.

I’ve learnt quite a lot in a week (namely having a puppy = buying wireless headphones, Max does not like me typing when I should be entirely focused on him, I am a moron when it comes to technology, and WordPress is impressively idiot-proof, despite my best efforts). But I have really enjoyed having the opportunity to write about music; I have endless conversations about music but its a different skill to try and articulate passion in written form; I may not be particularly good at it, but I’m trying (honest).

The weirdest thing that has happened in the past week is that one of the bands in my top 50 of 2016 emailed to say ‘thank you’. I wrote that list in Mid-December to send out to a few friends, as I do every year. The notion that any of the bands/artists would ever read it is a little mind-blowing. I won’t say who the band were, but I thought it was great of them to reach out.

Fortuitously this has been a really good time to start a music blog. I’ve had a lot of good stuff to point people towards. It almost certainly won’t always be so. But at the moment I feel slightly overwhelmed with lots of good albums and tracks that I want to talk about.

The greatest restriction with blogging is simple: time. I am pretty sure I could spend all day talking about and listening to music, and I have some ideas for some other stuff we could do in the future. I say ‘we’, because four people have indicated they’d also like to join the Astral Penguins revolution (disclaimer: I may be overstating our intentions). But I’m very happy we’ll have more voices on the site in the coming weeks, and – if it all works out – there will be a focus on films as well as a stronger focus on albums and less commercial music.

The final thing I wanted to mention is albums. I’m a great lover of singles; I’d much rather focus my efforts on individual tracks than spend time wading through 50 minutes of a band’s efforts, 30 of which should have been binned (which is the case with 90% of albums). It’s just a preference, but I slightly neglected albums last year and so I decided I will make a much bigger effort on listening to albums this year. I want to incorporate that into Astral Penguins, but I haven’t quite worked out how I’m going to do it yet. Hopefully there will be something here in the next few days.

That’s enough for now. There will be another Track of the Day tonight, but until then, have a great day.

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