600 Slugs Below
There is a pidgeon on the ledge just outside my window and he is doing the most unspeakable things to the ivy. Every now and then, he turns to look at me, head cocked to one side as though to ask just what the fuck I think I’m looking at. He wants to come inside but I have a strict No Birds Indoors policy and pidgeons are a type of bird. I also have a No Birds Befouling The Courtyard policy but am currently struggling to enforce that particular piece of legislature. I have heard tell of mystical chimes that are superior to spikes and also fake birds that eat other birds but so far, he is winning.
Those of you paying close enough attention to my bullshit shall already be aware that I like ambient things: noises from inside a cave, chords comprised of four-track feedback, the wind and rumbling boilers. Those are some of the things that I enjoy and everyone needs a hobby. It was only natural that I would be drawn like a fuzzy, ill-formed moth to Jim Guthrie’s haunted score for Capybara’s ‘Below’. He worked on the thing for five years. Possibly using a PS1 and MTV Music Maker. I find myself somewhat in awe. Yes, it has parts of ‘Hyper Light Drifter’ in there and also the black art that is ‘Spelunky’ but Guthrie’s long-gestated creation is its own thing too. It is a far sadder, lonelier experience than either of the aforementioned worlds and yet, it retains elements of that chip tune magic that dials into this particular genre. Listen to ‘With Sword and Shield’ right now and you’ll get me. Either that or go sit in your utility room with the lights off. Your call.
A few people have been asking after the whole ‘Polaroid Quota’ of late and I must admit, I have been remiss. It isn’t that I don’t have stacks of extremely flammable prints stuffed in every conceivable nook and cranny of my abode - it’s just that me knowing me, I have concentrated maximum focus elsewhere for a time now and the 600 has been on pause. Shooting instant film in the winter is also difficult if not impossible (pocket warmers are involved) but that doesn’t mean you should have room to graze. The above are provided to that end. They were taken in the past, at various points over the last three years and now they are here. That is as much information as I am able to summon from the muddled depths that constitute my mind. In my defence, they are legion.
The boys from IGN’s Prepare To Try series are no longer the boys from IGN’s Prepare To Try series. They have gestated and now have their own thing. It’s called RKG and they are, by all accounts, killing it. If you are at all partial toward a good “let’s play” or just have a secret soft spot for incredible mirth, their new series is called Retry and it might be right up your proverbial alley. I watched PTT in its entirety and - on the odd evening that I actually found myself barrelling ‘round the house with nothing to do and everyone else out doing very exciting things - they were a species of especially entertaining compatriots. Also, it is known that I am not the most adept or metalled person in regards to Souls-like games [or even actual Souls games] so watching them repeatedly throw themselves through that unforgiving wall is most satisfying in a way that therapists are still battling to comprehend.
It is the most rubbery of necks.
JD - TACOCAT
[Props to Capybara Games for the exellent thumbnail art from ‘Below’.]