screenshots for a new cold war

The Cold War of 1945-1989 was a bad movie, with commies hiding under every bed and nukes of Damocles hanging over every head. A bad time to be alive and a great time to have behind us, at least until Hillary Clinton, pouting because she lost an election, singlehandedly revived it.

The second James Bond film, From Russia with Love (not to be confused with Trailer Park Boys' grease film From Russia with the Love Bone), is a First Cold War entertainment. The white hats are spy Bond (Sean Connery) and Russian agent Tatiana Romanova (Daniela Bianchi), the black hats are, among others, SPECTRE operatives Donald Grant (Robert Shaw) and Rosa Klebb (Lotte Lenya).

Alex on Film says this about Grant and Bond:

The line where Grant talks about Bond having to crawl and kiss his (Grant’s) foot isn’t in the book. Was it improvised? Bond is, of course, a gentleman agent (what he’s called in the trailer) and a snobbish member of the upper class. He’s on to Grant as soon as he orders the wrong wine at dinner. In the book though Grant is a psychopathic serial killer triggered by phases of the moon, not someone with much of a class consciousness. He’s only working for the Russians because they let him kill people...

Watching the movie again after many years got me imagining things from the viewpoint of the women. My comment on Alex on Film's post (with added screenshots) follows.


Poor Rosa Klebb. She learned a valuable lesson here: Never send a “paranoid murderer” to do the work of a real spy. Instead of testing Grant’s muscle tone by sucker punching him,


she should have been asking him if Chianti was really the best thing to drink with grilled sole.


Then, after her plans were thwarted by Bond, a super agent whose superiority she failed to anticipate, she goes after him alone, relying on a maid costume and poison tipped dart to stop him.


Also, while admiring Grant’s physique at the beginning, she should have been asking him if he had any class anxieties that might impair his judgment in a contest of wills with a real English (well, Scottish) gentleman.
And what will be Tatiana’s story here? A zealot for Mother Russia, pimped out by the woman-admiring Klebb, she loses her heart to the English agent...


Promptly after the credits roll, the agent will dump her for his next paramour, and she'll end her days in a dreary MI5 decoding pool. Or will she use her extraordinary beauty to “land” another English gentleman? Or will she be exchanged back to Russia to be debriefed about SPECTRE, sadder but wiser, but unlike Klebb, still alive? We can only speculate.

earcon Sampler: Tom Moody Edit (new Bandcamp release)

This release appears on St Celfer and Tom Moody, a collaborative project page for St Celfer ( and yrs truly.
Liner notes for the release:

earcon was an earlier alias of St Celfer (aka John Parker). For this sampler I chose tracks from earcon's catalog and edited them into the above mix. The songs are discrete, not faded together, offering what I hope is a cohesive "take" on earcon's music.

The earcon project is discussed a bit in our interview at
Parker made the songs over a several year period with the Elektron Monomachine instrument, then saved the individual "stubs" (tracks within the song) as .wav files and further edited them in a home computer.

For this selection I've narrowed the range of the work to short-ish songs with straightforward beats and melodies to try to give the flavor of what can be done with a sophisticated beatbox.
At the same time this is very much a collaborative project, where I have imposed my taste and preferences on John''s music, shortening and occasionally layering tracks, DJ-remix-style.

The releases I culled for this mix (over 50 songs in all) came from four earcon CDs: Party Lion, Funkiller, Funkiller 2, and Funkiller 3-4.
One additional track came from this earcon EP on Bandcamp: John's own compilation of earcon material can be found at
Only three songs overlap in our two retrospectives!

about that "riot"

Who defiles the sacred Capitol more, red state tourists allowed by police to roam the halls, yelling uncouthly, or Schumer, Pelosi, McConnell, et al, who sell their offices every day to the highest corporate bidders? (It's a rhetorical question.)

Update: Of course putting riot in scare quotes makes light of what we will be hearing described as an insurrection or coup for the rest of our natural lives.

No, sorry, violent insurrection, according to Wall Street on Parade, a left-leaning finance site, which heats up the rhetoric even further by declaring it "the worst battle in the U.S. Capitol building since the British attempted to burn the place down in 1814 (during the War of 1812)." Nothing said about Black Panthers entering the building with rifles in 1967 (and no casualties).

C.J. Hopkins has given up trying to cool down the rhetoric and joins his progressive friends in a full-throated 30 Minutes Hate against Trump and all the small town moms and pops who voted for him:

Oh, yes, you really did it this time! You stormed the goddamned US Capitol. You and your racist, Russia-backed army of bison-hat wearing half-naked actors have meddled with the primal forces of GloboCap [Global Capitalism], and now, by God, you will atone! No, do not try to minimize your crimes. You entered a building without permission! The building where America simulates democracy! You walked around in there waving silly flags! You went into the Chamber, into people’s offices! One of you actually put his filthy populist feet up on Pelosi’s desk … ON HER DESK! This aggression will not stand!

Update 2: The Grayzone offers some background on Capitol invader John Sullivan, who videotaped the Ashli Babbit shooting and can be seen on the tape running around the building yelling encouragement to the Trumpists. Was he a Trumpist himself? A BLM activist? (BLM says no.) A police plant? Answering such questions might be helpful, rather than immediately demonizing small town Trump supporters as domestic terrorists (which the DC elite are busy doing).

Update 3: Bernard, Moon of Alabama: "The anti-Trump campaign, from Russiagate to Ukrainegate to this "insurrection" nonsense, has likely done more damage to the U.S. than Trump managed to do during his four years in office. The hostility the Democrats have shown will create a huge backlash. Do they really believe that can suppress 74 million Trump voters?"

Music for Piano (new Bandcamp release)

Am pleased to announce my 37th Bandcamp release, Music for Piano.

Three main methods of making piano music were employed:
• actual keyboard playing, recorded as midi and edited
• entering notes in midi piano roll
• creating chord, melody and arpeggio patterns with Tracktion Waveform 11' s "pattern generator," then manually editing them.

The first six songs were created in 2020, the remainder in 2009-2016.

Released December 22, 2020

If you'd like to support this blog (now entering its 20th, ad-free year) buying the occasional Bandcamp song or LP is a great way to do that.