水曜日, 9月 28, 2005

First rule about Tube Club...

drove a few miles up north to rotherham after work.

i was drenched, waiting by the depot. unpacked there and then.

drove home.

struggled up the staircase.

unbubblewrapped and plugged to the mains.

turned everything to 12 o'clock.

switched on. plugged in the xingxiao (yes... that one.).

the notes from the intro to corduroy.



UPDATE 9月 30, 2005

this 10-yr old american amp has killer tones. to prove a point the neon once made, the first guitar that had the honour of plugging in into this 40-watter (all set at 12 o'clock - apart from the volume, of course) was my 9-yr old xingxiao strat. bloody 'ell. the tones from the neck pickups were so sweet. never have i heard that old guitar sounding so solid (the last time was on trying out the neon's 1982 deluxe reverb II).

the volume knob was only at 8 o'clock and my floor was already heaving. and that's before i got drive channel kicking in,when the master volume was barely at 7 o'clock. it was so loud that i was worried the police might come knocking on my door.

it's volume aside, the tone is luscious. sad to say, my repertoire is only covers (and rhythm parts only), so my poorly attempted licks were kinda ok lah (i actually played the first few bars of little wing that i can remember) when it comes to its execution, but i can assure you that the amp was responsive to different picking nuances.

this weekend, i will have a word with my really understanding neighbour downstairs so that i can try out the blues deluxe's full potential. i've tried the telecaster and the black beauty today, but not the gibson les paul yet. tomorrow will be the day.

now i know why people would kill for a valve amp. the total damage caused? £415. and i'd say that's cheap especially with what this amp can do!

check out the specs (albeit taken from that of the reissue ones released by fender this year).

火曜日, 9月 27, 2005

Take me to your leader

one attribute of being a blogger: jumping on bandwagons.

Your Personality Is

Guardian (SJ)

You are sensible, down to earth, and goal oriented.
Bottom line, you are good at playing by the rules.

You tend to be dominant - and you are a natural leader.
You are interested in rules and order. Morals are important to you.

A hard worker, you give your all at whatever you do.
You're very serious, and people often tell you to lighten up.

In love, you tend to take things carefully and slowly.

At work, you are suited to almost any career - but you excel in leadership positions.

With others, you tend to be polite and formal.

As far as looks go, you are traditionally attractive. You take good care of yourself.

On weekends, you tend to like to do organized activities. In fact, you often organize them!

yeah. like buggery i am.

土曜日, 9月 24, 2005

Going apeshit

a long time ago in a flat in sandyford, i was watching the MTV music awards show on cable. this was one year after the time when i said, "tak pe lah... korang pegi lah. next time aje kot", after being invited to go see kurt cobain and friends thrash their gear at the newcastle mayfair.

i was probably doing my ironing then, when i got to see pearl jam performing with neil "the godfather of grunge" young do rocking in the free world.

to this very day, i still think that was my best ever pearl jam moment. even a lil' better than that summer in manchester five years ago. neil young was going berserk with his tremolo on his les paul deluxe. stone and mike wore the most horrendous seluar tidur onstage. ed looked like he was ever so dazed and couldn't care less, singing along with neil, bottle of red by the mikestand. jeff hopping like a bunny rabbit on frickin' LSD. and dave, the best PJ drummer ever, thrashing four cymbals with one hit despite his carpal tunnel syndrome. and to see a pre-steroid mike smashing his les paul black beauty on a 4 x 12".

beat that.

so, what's your best pearl jam / [*insert your fav band here*] moment?

木曜日, 9月 22, 2005

Bola & Lipstick

i have a confession.

i... err... enjoyed watching gol & gincu (don't ask me how i got to watch it). it was enjoyable and for what it is (bend it like beckham meets legally blonde, with a dollop of clueless), i thought it was a breath of fresh air for malaysian films. before you say mana ada orang malaysia macam ni, sorry beb. got... in KL belambak.

the music is great (all malaysian) and the chicks in it - huiyo just doesn't do them justice. hehe... don't get me started.

now just shoot me. quick. in the head.

update: as recommended by atok, this is one of the best reviews of the flick i've read so far.

火曜日, 9月 20, 2005

Oka san...

i slept a lil' late last night because of this.

hell, yeah. it's out. go watch it.

月曜日, 9月 19, 2005

Astrundi Kudo

idlan emailed me with this:

... might turn this into a charity pledge - for every person who votes, I plan to donate 1p to charity: currently split 50-50 to Yvonne Foong's medical donation drive, and the other half to my charity of choice - Islamic Relief. Of course, if only 200 people end up voting, I'll up that to 10p per vote; and if only 10 people vote I may up that to £1 per vote or something like that.

apa laga? vote away! it's for a good cause, too!

日曜日, 9月 18, 2005

Die, die my darling

this is what i had to endure last night. got back late after helping the guys move house and treating ourselves to crispy fried noodles with king prawn, fishballs and squid. slept. alarm rang at 0245 hours. woke up and 14 minutes 27 seconds later i delivered the final and fatal blow. die muthatruckas!

it's mine. it's all mine. muahahahahaha!

土曜日, 9月 17, 2005

Moh makan!: Rizkee

another moh makan! entry. that's quite a few in a row already. i had the pleasure of attending the opening of rizkee sate and noodle cafe in manchester last night. it was a small affair yet the cafe was chock-a! i was going to write a little review but it will be a tad difficult to be impartial when the cafe is run by my cousin (i deserve a free bowl of banh pho bo every time i come over, eh sherry? kasi tambah noodle lebih sikit!). with that disclaimer, i will now go on.

it's a simple yet lovely cafe. simplicity is pretty much a recurring theme at rizkee. on entering the premises, there is a softly-lit waiting area overlooking the bar. we were immediately ushered to our table. the rizkee menu was predominantly made up of south east asian noodle dishes and sate. some of us went for the non-alcoholic aperitifs. nik and farah had pina colada and sangria mocktails whilst nadim went for the malaysia boleh!, a shaken (not stirred) concoction comprising fruit juices, a dash of grenadine and 1 egg yolk.

we had tauhu sumbat and popiah goreng to kick things off. for the main course, i went for the banh pho bo with a side serving of beef sate. i have to admit, much to my embarassment, that i've never had vietnamese beef noodles before. i thought it was absolutely gorgeous and it will definitely be the main reason for coming back to this place! for vegetarians they also had a kebab-oid comprising carrots, green peppers, fuchuk and onions, all marinaded as you would meat sate. the amount of meat, per stick, in the sate was actually quite generous. it is quite difficult to genuinely replicate sate especially if you don't make it over a charcoal fire. as much as i commend the sate they served within the limitations of acquiring charcoal pits in this country, there can be room for improvement.

between the six of us, we pretty much tried to order across the board what was available on the menu. the mee goreng mamak (but i would recommend a slice of lime as opposed to lemon on the side!) and char kuey teow was lovely and they did not stinge on the king prawns. they were kurang pedas to cater for the more sensitive western palate and nadim recommended that we should order a side of cili potong with our noodle soup! everyone found the portions to be filling, except for yours truly. hahaha. buruk lantak and makan ke daghah were two terms that immediately came to mind. as this was literally day one, i wasn't going to be too critical of any hiccups. the service was a little on the slow side but it was worth the wait and none of our orders were missed.

for dessert, we had the delightful talam of kuehs (a variety plate consisting of seri muka, lepat pisang, kueh keria and karipap). i was dismayed that the sago gula melaka (my favourite at deli-Q in KL) was not available. next time, then. all these were accompanied by teh tarik. for the more sophisticated, there are cappucinos and lattes available. sorry lah. gua makan malaysian, gua minum pun misti mau malaysian.

all in all, i had an enjoyable evening and i was well impressed with what they had (and did) on day one. despite the odd criticisms i mentioned earlier, i am sure i will see further additions and improvement the next time i come for a meal. it is a great place especially if you are NHS staff as they do regular NHS discounted deals on a monthly basis! highly recommended if you are ever in manchester.

RIZKEE sate and noodle cafe
30A manchester road, chorlton-cum-hardy, manchester M21 9PH
closed sundays
0044 161 860 5353 (for reservations)

水曜日, 9月 14, 2005

Moh makan minum!: Rut bir

root beer. only at A&W. if you want the still version, red horse or 7 rings. being in england, however, means i am deprived of one of my fav soft drinks. i am not a big fan of sarsi / sarsaparilla (root beer is also made of sarsaparilla). all my english friends who had tried root beer don't seem to share my love for this drink as they feel the taste is more akin to cough medicine as opposed to the pure bliss you get from a large icy mugful, obligatory after that coney dog.

i can get A&W in this country, but only at selfridges and it's £1.45 a can. then i discovered this at waitrose. it's called bundaberg and it's australian. bloody hell, having it chilled is just pure heaven. it's not as sweet as A&W's but it's one of the finest root beers i've ever tasted. it comes in the coolest bottle i've ever seen. you don't unscrew / bite the top off, but pull it like you would a can of coke. highly recommended!

and for all you ben's bitches fans out there (you know who you are!), they are back with a new EP! check out this new track, aku suka jolok, which is available on the i-bands site.

土曜日, 9月 10, 2005

Moh makan! (supplementary): Ais kacang

i call it ais kacang. my late mama called it ais kacang. so does my dad and the rest of the family. everyone else i know calls it air/ais batu campur or ABC for short. is it a perak thing? i don't know.

everyone has their favourite spot to get their ABC fix. i'm a meat-and-two-veg kind of chap. means that i only accept these ingredients in my ais kacang:

1. kacang (red bean, and no complains if they put actual peanuts)
2. lengkong (grass jelly)
3. agar-agar (hijau or any colour they have)
4. sirap (merah is a must, hijau is optional)
5. gula merah
6. evaporated milk (lihat bunga ni, ingat carnation, lazat rasaNIYERR...)
7. cendol is fine, but not really necessary
8. jagung

i would therefore avoid any ABC that has the word special appended to it. please lah, if i want ice cream, i'll have ice cream. not in my ais kacang. i've seen/heard of ABC's that contain:

1. buah pala
2. nangka
3. gajah
4. bicycle
5. raisins
6. banana

tonight i had ais kacang with none of the six prohibited ingredients listed above (a list which is not exhaustive). and i am not in KL.

Moh makan!: Chilli

this is great to make if you run out of options, especially if you leave the local yemeni grocer-cum-butcher without a single king prawn or chicken breast fillet in hand (this entry was supposed to be on mee yoke). got this off one of my jamie oliver books. one thing i've learnt about making mat salleh versions of anything (supposedly) hot is to not follow the recipe. hahaha. all right then, follow it but it won't hurt if you double/triple (without overdoing it) certain ingredients of the recipe.

chilli is best eaten if it was cooked the night before as the meat flavours just seep into the sauce. i had no choice this time but to cook it while leaving my friends in the lounge chatting / watching telly / installing an audigy 2 ZS soundcard, sipping chilled canned cincau (yang memang bukan rasa macam lancau). also, i left them some corn chips ( aka doritos) and fresh home-made salsa, for them to munch while they wait.

blitz two large onions, a couple of garlic cloves and cabai merah (kasi dua), sautee the mixture and add the minced beef. now, beef is way better than lamb/other kambing for chilli, this i can attest. two teaspoon measures of chilli powder were recommended in the recipe. not today, man. gua kasi belasah five, i think. pandai-pandai lah. hahaha. none of this woosy schwartz type, it's cap burung something or other. season and chuck in one or two cinnamon sticks into the mix. after a few minutes or so when the meat is brown, add a can of chopped tomatoes (i don't know if it's just me, but i really think the ones from waitrose is the dog's bullocks[sic]). get some sundried tomatoes in olive oil (great with mozzarella, basil and pesto as a panini), blitz like half a cup (lebih takpe) and add that as well. cook for like an hour. after 40 minutes, chuck in a can of red kidney beans (drained).

serve with rice. you could also make tacos with it so i bought some tortillas. add some salad, sour cream and jalapeno chillis, you could pretend you are having your lunch break at the fullerton fender factory like they did in the 50's. oralle!

日曜日, 9月 04, 2005

Tiga puluh tahun

20 years ago - 1985

i was a third former in an all-boys boarding school in seremban. this was the time when you self proclaim that you are a senior among the puny juniors. this was also the year when i escaped a major thrashing by a bunch of fifth formers from a dorm in a neighbouring house. i can't for the life of me remember what the root of the problem was. and for some reason we knew that something was brewing that would possibly lead to the entire dorm being summoned by these pailangs. a mate of mine and i quickly filled in a borang balik kampung. we weren't taking any chances, even though the rest of the guys in the dorm felt nothing was gonna happen. come the following sunday evening, i got back from KL to see one of my dorm-mates with a face as large as house. what followed after that was a dismissal of the pailangs. a massive one too, i think that fifth form dorm lost like 25% of its population. permanently. preserving a code of honour among one's schoolmates, regardless? not this time.

10 years ago - 1995

hidup grunge. hidup alt-rock and anything of its ilk. vitalogy came out. got the CD but i still had no ongkos for a CD player. this was the final leg of a half-decade of not having a life, aka medical school. group revision sessions which involved buckets of KFC (*lalalala*) and apple pie. which probably explains why nothing in this year really stick out in my mind. and as luck would have it, i got that pretty piece of paper with the four letters that fitted nicely behind my name. my folks came over for like two weeks and a bit for the grand day. the latter half of the year saw me earning enough dosh to buy me my first set of hi-fi separates so that i can now play my vitalogy CD, a semi-rusty jalopy and slightly niftier clothes that were not from C&A.

5 years ago - 2000

of the girl / breakerfall / grievance / corduroy / light years / go / given to fly / evacuation / even flow / daughter / animal / wishlist / nothingman / betterman / insignificance / rearviewmirror / last exit / once / black / timeless melody / state of love and trust / fuckin' up / leatherman / footsteps / do the evolution / garden / yellow ledbetter

june 4th, manchester.

and this. may you rest in peace.

3 years ago - 2002

i co-organised a gig for the first time ever, with shahid and firr. it was on the evening of the sheffield sports meet which meant that some people just ain't too happy with that. i wasn't in the e-mailing list of the local grapevine which meant i was spared the e-mails shunning the gig, which was purportedly held near sheffield's red light district (wow. we have one, do we?). funny that. the engineering department, which is one of UK's best, is in the same vicinity. why don't you get the students to pack up their bags and study elsewhere while you're at it? the gig was aptly titled malam temasya pria mambo 2 (no wonder eyebrows were raised as high the arts tower), based on the title of a gig held in a college in perak's royal town a few years back. we had five bands playing and it was easy to get them to come down all the way to play as the newcastle malaysian soc had its gig only a month before ours. we had lots of help from the newcastle and glasgow people with the loaning of their sabian cymbals and expertise in being front-of-house sound engineers. we charged like three quid for the tix. each band played a 30-40 minute set. the cost incurred wasn't too bad as i paid for the PA and bass amp rental (the guitar amps were ours and james let us borrow his drumkit) whilst shahid coughed up the dosh for the party room which was cosy enough to fit like a hundred guests. we had like 70 people turning up in the end, and i think between the three of us we got a tenner each in profit. which was fine by us!

Last year - 2004

to quote steven tyler, i was eff-eye-ann-ee - fine*. and like idlan, 無秩序のkrik の胃 was born. 'nuff said.

*fcuked-up, insecure, neurotic, emotional

This year - 2005

i started playing in a band again. got my groove back. working my ass off (i think i am). looking forward for all of this to end so i can make a new start. and a well-deserved break at the end of it.

Next year - 2006

my new job. my new apartment. my new life.

10 years from now - 2015

sing that doris day song lah.


mari kita lihat siapa yang kenaaaa! i'm tagging pick yin (you belum kena lagi kan? hehe), bluescrubs, delirium, sitinesta and sharizal. don't look at me, blame him.