max's eyes

finalList 2021...

Glass Animals - I Don't Wanna Talk (I Just Wanna Dance)
Hallie - Babysitter
Hotel - Loose Change [Ft. Obi Ill Terrors]
Jaguar Jonze - CURLED IN
Julien Baker - Hardline
K.Flay - Four Letter Words
Keli Holiday - Song Goes On [Ft. Coyle Girelli]
Middle Kids - Today We're The Greatest
Tiny Little Houses - Golden Boy
max's eyes

shortList 2021...

1300 - Smashmouth
100 gecs - mememe
Alex Lahey - Spike The Punch
Alice Skye - Everything Is Great
Alice Skye - Party Tricks
Amber Mark - Worth It
Amy Shark - Amy Shark
Amy Shark - Baby Steps
Amy Shark - Worst Day Of My Life
Aodhan - I'm Closed
Architects - Little Wonder [Ft. Mike Kerr]
Arlo Parks - Hope
Ashe - I'm Fine
Ayla - Ride Along
Bad/Love - Follow The Leader
Baker Boy - Ride [Ft. Yirrmal]
Ball Park Music - Sunscreen
Beddy Rays - Wait A While
Beddy Rays - Better In Blak [triple j Like A Version 2021]
Berried Alive - Blood Orange
Between You & Me - Supervillain
Between You & Me - Go To Hell [Ft. Yours Truly]
Big Scary - Get Out!
Biig Piig - Lavender
Billie Eilish - Getting Older
Billie Eilish - Happier Than Ever
Billie Eilish - NDA
Black Midi - Slow
Bleachers - Stop Making This Hurt
Blu DeTiger - Vintage
Boy & Bear - Don't You Forget About Me [triple j Like A Version 2021]
BROODS - Piece Of My Mind
Bugs - Diamond
Charli XCX - Good Ones
Charlie Collins - Fuck It
Chasing Ghosts - Summer
Chet Faker - Whatever Tomorrow
CHVRCHES - He Said She Said
CHVRCHES - How Not To Drown [Ft. Robert Smith]
Clairo - Amoeba
Clay J Gladstone - Dead Friends
Cool Sounds - Crimson Mask
Cousin Tony's Brand New Firebird - When This Is Over
D'Arcy Spiller - Wolf Blood
Dave Winnel - Freaking Out
Dave Winnel - C.E.O. [Ft. BodaciousThang]
deadmau5 - Hyperlandia [Ft. Foster The People]
Deafheaven - In Blur
Dear Seattle - Way Out
Death From Above 1979 - One + One
Didirri - Wake Me Up When September Ends [triple j Like A Version 2021]
Drapht - Shadows On My Walls
Drapht - Robbery [triple j Like A Version 2021]
DZ Deathrays - Rock Star [Ft. Nerve] [triple j Like A Version 2021]
easy life - ocean view
Eliza & The Delusionals - YOU
Everything Everything - Supernormal
Fergus James - Backseat
FINNEAS - A Concert Six Months From Now
FINNEAS - The 90s
Flight Facilities - The Ghost
Flo Milli - Roaring 20s
Flossy - Better Off
flowerkid - vodka orange juice
Foals - Wake Me Up
FRITZ - Die Happily
Gang Of Youths - the man himself
Genesis Owusu - Gold Chains
Genesis Owusu - No Looking Back
Genesis Owusu - Anarchy In The UK [triple j Like A Version 2021]
Georgia Maq - Someone Stranger [Ft. Alice Ivy]
girl in red - Body And Mind
Glass Animals - I Don't Wanna Talk (I Just Wanna Dance)
Gordi x Alex Lahey - Dino's
Great Gable - Hazy
Griff - One Foot In Front Of The Other
Griff - Black Hole
Hallie - Babysitter
Halsey - Easier Than Lying
Hatchie - This Enchanted
Hayley Mary - Chemtrails Over The Country Club [triple j Like A Version 2021]
Hiatus Kaiyote - Canopic Jar
Holding Absence - Afterlife
Hollow Coves - Hello
Holly Humberstone - Please Don't Leave Just Yet
Holy Holy - Believe Anything
Holy Holy - I.C.U.
Holy Holy - Port Rd [Ft. Queen P]
Holy Holy - The Aftergone [Ft. CLEWS]
Hope D - Addict
Hope D - Toxic [triple j Like A Version 2021]
Hotel - Loose Change [Ft. Obi Ill Terrors]
I Know Leopard - Lover Automatic
IDLES - The Beachland Ballroom
Jack River - We Are The Youth
Jaguar Jonze - CURLED IN
Jess Day - Naked
Jordy Maxwell - The Sweetest Days
Joy Crookes - Feet Don't Fail Me Now
Juice WRLD & benny blanco - Real Shit
Julia Stone - Fire In Me
Julia Stone - We All Have [Ft. Matt Berninger]
Julien Baker - Hardline
Jungle - Talk About It
K.Flay - Four Letter Words
K.Flay - Dating My Dad [Ft. Travis Barker]
Kanye West - Hurricane
Kanye West - Jail
Kat Edwards - Safety
Keli Holiday - Song Goes On [Ft. Coyle Girelli]
KennyHoopla & Travis Barker - hollywood sucks//
Kim Dracula - Paparazzi
King Gizzard & The Lizard Wizard - Interior People
King Princess - House Burn Down
King Stingray - Milkumana
Ladyhawke & Broods - Guilty Love
Lana Del Rey - Chemtrails Over The Country Club
Lana Del Rey - Dark But Just A Game
Le Shiv - I'm Fine, I've Said Too Much, But How Are You?
Lime Cordiale And Idris Elba - Apple Crumble
Little Simz - Introvert
London Grammar - Lord It's A Feeling
Lorde - Mood Ring
Lorde - Solar Power
LOSER - On The Edge
Machine Gun Kelly - love race [Ft. Kellin Quinn]
Made In Paris - Wonderlust [Ft. Simonne Jones]
Maggie Lindemann - Crash And Burn
Make Them Suffer - Contraband [Ft. Courtney LaPlante]
Mansionair - MORE
Maple Glider - Swimming
Masked Wolf - Pandemonium
Meet Me @ The Altar - Brighter Days (Are Before Us)
Methyl Ethel - Matters
Methyl Ethel - Frontier Psychiatrist/Dribble [triple j Like A Version 2021]
Mia Wray - Never Gonna Be The Same
Middle Kids - Stacking Chairs
Middle Kids - Today We're The Greatest
Milky Chance - Colorado
Moaning Lisa - Inadequacy
Montaigne - Technicolour
Montaigne - Now (In Space)
Mura Masa - 2gether
Mvlholland - 83
Nick Ward - PRINCESS
NIKI & 88rising - Split
Noah Dillon - Alive And Kicking
Northlane - Clockwork
Nothing But Thieves - Futureproof
nothing,nowhere. - Pieces of You
Ocean Grove - CALI SUN
Olive Amun - Blues
Olivia Rodrigo - brutal
Olivia Rodrigo - drivers license
Olivia Rodrigo - good 4 u
Oscar Lang - Yeah!
Pacific Avenue - Easy Love
Pandamic - BUS
Parcels - Somethinggreater
Parcels - LordHenry
Peach PRC - Josh
Peking Duk - Chemicals
Phoebe Bridgers - That Funny Feeling
Polish Club - No Heaven
Pond - America's Cup
Pretty Girl - Arc
Pridelands - Heavy Tongue
Pridelands - The Walls
PUP - Waiting
RedHook - Bad Decisions
RedHook - Kamikaze [Ft. Will King]
Remi Wolf - Quiet On Set
Remi Wolf - Liquor Store
renforshort - virtual reality
Rosie Darling - Water Me Down
Royal Blood - Limbo
Ruby Fields - Kitchen
Sam Fender - Get You Down
Sam Fender - Seventeen Going Under
Sharon Van Etten & Angel Olsen - Like I Used To
Skegss - Down To Ride
Slowly Slowly - Comets & Zombies
SLUMBERJACK - Better Off [Ft. Lucy Lucy]
Sly Withers - Clarkson
Sly Withers - The Scientist [triple j Like A Version 2021]
Spacey Jane - Here Comes The Sun [triple j Like A Version 2021]
Stellie - Bullet Through The Heart
Stevie Jean - Menace
Sycco - Time's Up
Teen Jesus And The Jean Teasers - AHHHH!
Teenage Dads - Cheerleader
Teenage Joans - Ice Cream
Teenage Joans - Wine
Telenova - Bones
Telenova - Hung Up [triple j Like A Version 2021]
The Avalanches - We Go On [Ft. Cola Boyy/Mick Jones]
The Dead Love - All For Nothing
The Dead Love - If You Say So
The Jungle Giants - Heartless
The Jungle Giants - Treat You Right
The Kid LAROI & Justin Bieber - Stay
The Knocks - R U HIGH [Ft. Mallrat]
The Lazy Eyes - Nobody Taught Me
The Lazy Eyes - Fuzz Jam
The Million - Last Call
The Moving Stills - Downlow
The Rubens - Muddy Evil Pain
The Snuts - Burn The Empire
The Weeknd - Take My Breath
The Wiggles - Elephant [triple j Like A Version 2021]
The Wombats - If You Ever Leave, I'm Coming With You
The Wombats - Method To The Madness
Thomas Headon & Lizzy McAlpine - Bored
Thornhill - Casanova
Tiny Little Houses - Car Crash
Tiny Little Houses - Golden Boy
To Octavia - The Sound Of The Rain
Tones And I - Fall Apart
Tones And I - Lonely
Tones And I - Won't Sleep
TOWNS - Swimming
WAAX - Most Hated Girl
Wavves - Sinking Feeling
Wet Leg - Chaise Longue
Wet Leg - Wet Dream
WILLOW & Avril Lavigne - G R O W [Ft. Travis Barker]
Wolf Alice - Delicious Things
Wolf Alice - The Last Man On Earth
YEBBA - Louie Bag [Ft. Smino]
Yoste - I only go south
Yours Truly - Walk Over My Grave
YUNGBLUD - acting like that [Ft. Machine Gun Kelly]
max's eyes

finalList 2020...

Beddy Rays — Sobercoaster
Hockey Dad — Itch
KennyHoopla — ESTELLA// [Ft. Travis Barker]
Lime Cordiale — No Plans To Make Plans
Liza Anne — Bad Vacation
LOSER — Lazy
Obscura Hail — Doomer
Slowly Slowly — You Are Bigger Than This Town
Stand Atlantic — Shh!
The Avalanches - Running Red Lights [Ft. Rivers Cuomo/Pink Siifu]
rion psychic

shortList 2020...

#1 Dads - Freedom Fighter
070 Shake - Under The Moon
A Day To Remember - Mindreader
A Day To Remember - Brick Wall
A. Swayze & The Ghosts - Mess Of Me
Agung Mango - LITTLE BUM
Alec Wigdahl - The Word
Alex Lahey - Sucker For Punishment
Alex the Astronaut - I Didn't Know
Alex the Astronaut - I Think You're Great
Alice Skye - Stay In Bed
Amy Shark - C'MON [Ft. Travis Barker]
Andy Bull - It's All Connected
Aodhan - Drive
Architects - Animals
Ario Parks - Eugene
Ario Parks - Caroline
Asgeir - Lazy Giants
Ashe - Save Myself
Baby Queen - Want Me
Ball Park Music - Cherub
Ball Park Music - Day & Age
Ball Park Music - Head Like A Sieve
Ball Park Music - Paranoid Android [Like A Version 2020]
BAYNK - Tessellate [Ft. Tei Shi]
Bec Sykes - Edithvale
Beddy Rays - Better Weather
Beddy Rays - Sobercoaster
BENEE - Kool
Bicep - Apricots
Billie Eilish - No Time To Die
Billie Eilish - Therefore I Am
Bob Moses - The Blame
Boston Manor - Plasticine Dreams
Briggs - Extra Extra
Bring Me The Horizon - Parasite Eve
Bring Me The Horizon - Kingslayer [Ft. BABYMETAL]
Car Seat Headrest - Can't Cool Me Down
carolesdaughter - Violent
Childish Gambino - Algorhythm
Congrats Russian - Roulette
Creeper - Annabelle
Cub Sport - Confessions
Cut Copy - Like Breaking Glass
D'Arcy Spiller - What In Hell
Didirri - Raw Stuff
Dizzy - The Magician
Djo - Keep Your Head Up
DMA'S - The Glow
Dominic Fike - Why
Dune Rats - Stupid Is As Stupid Does {Ft. K.Flay}
E^ST - Fresh Out Of Love
Erthlings - Irrational
Eskimo Callboy - Hypa Hypa
Everything Everything - Arch Enemy
Everything Everything - Violent Sun
Eves Karydas - Complicated
FINNEAS - What They'll Say About Us
G Flip - Lady Marmalade [triple j Like A Version]
Garrett Kato - Breathe It In {Ft. Julia Stone}
Genesis Owusu - The Other Black Dog
Gerard Way - Here Comes The End [Ft. Judith Hill]
Ghostemane - Al
girl in red - rue
Glass Animals - It's All So Incredibly Loud
Glass Animals - Tangerine
Gordi - Volcanic
Gorillaz - Momentary Bliss [Ft. slowthai & Slaves]
Gorillaz - Pac-Man [Ft. ScHoolboy Q]
Gretta Ray - Passion
Grimes - 4ÆM
Grimes - You'll Miss Me When I'm Not Around
Grimes & j.ffi:PAN - Darkseid
Grouplove - Deleter
Gus Dapperton - First Aid
HAIM - I Know Alone
Halsey - 3am
Halsey - You should be sad
Harper Bloom - Walk My Way
Hayley Mary - Like A Woman Should
Hayley Williams - Roses/Lotus/Violet/Iris
Hinds - Good Bad Times
Hockey Dad - Good Eye
Hockey Dad - In This State
Hockey Dad - Itch
Hope D - Second
I Prevail - DOA [Ft. Joyner Lucas]
Icona Pop & Safi Tukker - Spa
Illy - Loose Ends [Ft. G Flip]
In Hearts Wake - Dystopia
Introvert - Mending Breaking
Jack Garratt - Time
Jack River - Dark Star
Jaguar Jonze - Deadalive
Jaguar Jonze - Rabbit Hole
Jake Bugg - Rabbit Hole
James Blake - Before
Jerome Farah - Vibrate
Jess Locke - Destroy Everything
Jimblah - About These Demons
Johnny Hunter - Try As You May
Joji - Ew
Joji - Run
Juice WRLD - Come & Go [with Marshmello]
Juice WRLD & The Weeknd - Smile
Julia Jacklin - CRY
Julia Stone - Unreal
KennyHoopla - how will i rest in peace if i'm buried by a highway?//
KennyHoopla - ESTELLA// [Ft. Travis Barker]
Kilter - Friction [Ft. JessB]
King Gizzard & The Lizard Wizard -Intrasport
King Gizzard & The Lizard Wizard -Oddlife
Kira Puru - Idiot
Kita Alexander - Can't Help Myself
Kwame - NOBODY {Ft. E^ST}
Last Dinosaurs - Flying
Lastlings - Take My Hand
Lime Cordiale - Addicted To The Sunshine
Lime Cordiale - No Plans to Make Plans
Lime Cordiale - Screw Loose
Liza Anne - Bad Vacation
Lola Scott - The Eviction Song
Lonely Disco Dust It Off [Ft. Asta]
LOSER - Lazy
LOSER - Upside Down
Louis The Child (with Vera Blue) - Nobody Like You
Louis The Child & EARTHGANG - Big Love
Love Fame Tragedy - Body Parts
Mac Miller - Good News
Machine Gun Kelly - concert for aliens
Machine Gun Kelly - forget me too [Ft. Halsey]
Machine Gun Kelly - body bag [Ft. YUNGBLUD & The Used]
Make Them Suffer - Soul Decay
Max Leone - Cautious
Mia Rodriguez - Beautiful & Bittersweet
Mickey Kojak - Strange
MID CITY - Forget It
Montaigne - Don't Break Me
Movements - Don't Give Up Your Ghost
Nectr - Someone
Nick Ward - Aubrey Plaza
NIKI - Selene
Nilufer Yanya - Crash
Northlane - Enemy Of The Night
Nothing But Thieves - Impossible
Nothing But Thieves - Unperson
Nothing But Thieves - Phobia
Obscura Hail - Doomer
Obscura Hail - Penumbra
Ocean Grove - DREAM
Of Monsters And Men - Circles {triple j Like A Version 2020}
Of Monsters And Men - Visitor
Oliver Tree - Cash Machine
Oliver Tree - Let Me Down
Oscar Lang - Apple Juice
Peach Tree Rascals - Deer
Peking Duk & The Wombats - Nothing To Love About Love
Petit Biscuit - I Leave Again [Ft. Shallou]
Phoebe Bridgers - Kyoto
Pluto Jonze - Walk Off The Edge With Me
Powderfinger - Day By Day
Powfu - death bed [Ft. beabadoobee]
PUP - Anaphylaxis
Purity Ring - peacefall
Purple Disco Machine - Hypnotized [Ft. Sophie & The Giants]
Puscifer - Apocalyptical
RedHook - Dead Walk
renforshort - i drive me mad
Rolling Blackouts Coastal Fever - Cars In Space
Romy - Lifetime
Royal Blood - Trouble's Coming
Ruby Fields - Pretty Grim
Run The Jewels - Ooh LA LA [Ft. Greg Nice/DJ Premier]
RVG - I Used To Love You
Siobhan Cotchin - The Fair -Weather Friend Blues
Sloan Peterson - Nightmare
Slowly Slowly - 19
Slowly Slowly - Creature Of Habit
Slowly Slowly - Melbourne
Slowly Slowly — You Are Bigger Than This Town
Soccer Mommy - yellow is the color of her eyes
Sorry - Right Round The Clock
Stand Atlantic - Jurassic Park
Stand Atlantic - Shh!
Stellie - Californian Lullaby
Stuck Out - Mindless [Ft. Mikaila Delgado]
Sycco - Embrace [triple j Like A Version 2020]
System Of A Down - Protect The Land
Taka Perry - Jesus Walks [Ft. A.GIRL/Emalia/Gia Vorne] [triple j Like A Version 2020]
Tame Impala - Posthumous Forgiveness
The Avalanches - Running Red Lights [Ft. Rivers Cuomo/Pink Siifu]
The Big Moon - Barcelona
The Flowers - You Don't Say!
The Naked And Famous - Bury Us
The Strokes - Bad Decisions
The Weeknd - Save Your Tears
Thelma Plum - These Days
Tia Gostelow - Rush
Tilly Tjala Thomas - Ngana Nyunyi
Tired Lion - Lie To Me
Tones And I - Bad Child
Travis Scott - The Plan
trials - i'm a fucking wreck [Ft. Daniyel]
Trophy Eyes - Figure Eight
Two People - A Taste
upsidedownhead - twice as tough [Ft. Mansionair]
Washington - Dark Parts
Whethan - Upside Down [Ft. Grouplove]
Willaris. K - INDIFFERENT [With Gordi]
Woodkid - Goliath
Y.O.G.A. - Your Devotion
Yorke - Treading Water
Yours Truly - Don't Look Back in Anger [Like A Version 2020]
Yours Truly - Together
YUNGBLUD - Lemonade [Ft. Denzel Curry]
rion psychic

Light My Candle...

Why to I let myself get drawn into these situations?  Situations I could so easily avoid by feigning interest in my watch and walking right by?

I was so close to home... so close I could see it.  From the station overpass, I'd followed the skyline to my house and up to the moon above, before I started down the stairs towards home.  Then I stopped at the landing in the middle.  A woman seemed to be struggling with a large suitcase.  It appeared she'd dragged the case down one flight, where the effort had exhausted her, leaving her stranded in the middle, draped and panting over the railing.  Both myself and another guy heading downstairs stepped to her aid, offering to assist with the luggage.  The woman gratefully nodded thanks to us both.

'Have you got it?' the guy asked, and I nodded, and looked back to the woman for the first time.  As I picked up the red suitcase, she attempted to look at me, struggling, it seemed, even to lift her head.  She panted as she thanked me, through visibly chapped lips, and looked to be struggling even to draw enough breath for the second 'thank you' which she desperately spat out.

'No problem...' I sneered, telling her to relax and take her time, as I took the bag downstairs, allowing her some time to compose herself.  I flipped the beige tag on the bag with my thumb innocuously as I placed the bag down, revealing the name 'Mimi,' and a local landline number along with a mobile number.  Turning back to the staircase, I saw that the woman had struggled to move beyond the landing I'd left her on.

'Sorry...' she wheezed, the effort of just lifting herself from the railing and speaking in tandem seeming to drain her of energy.  She attempted a few steps down, before her panting resumed, and she needed to sit on the stairs to recover further.  She took a swig from a water bottle she carried, some of which I could see had previously spilled over her shirt.

I could have waved goodbye at that point.  I should have bid her a good night and contined briskly away.  But I didn't.

'Take your time,' I said, feigning a smile.  'Rest for a while.'  I waited by her suitcase.  I glanced up at the woman, against the darkening sky.  She kept attempting to stand, but her rotund form threatened to topple her in the opposite direction with each attempt.  I sighed, telling her again to relax, and regain her energy.  What was I doing?  Why was I still waiting, dumbly, next to this woman's heavy red suitcase?

It took her a long time to make it down the remaining maybe twelve steps.  I tried not to make it too obvious that I was monitoring her progress, though not sure what action I would have taken had she actually stumbled forward as she appeared so likely to.  When she reached the bottom of the stairs, panting even more than she had been before, I suggested another period of recovery.  She told me I was kind, and asked my name.

'Dann,' I told her, through clenched teeth, watching a dark blue ute circle the mostly-empty parking lot.  The woman told me her name was Vanessa, and I glanced again at the tag on the bad, with little extra thought.  'How far do you need to go with this bag?'

'Just to the carpark,' she told me.  I asked if she was parked close by.  Perhaps, I could walk this wretched bag to her car and see her on her way.  'Yes, just in the carpark,' she repeated in answer to my question.  I looked at the few cars, wondering which I'd be stopping at before I went home.

Weak, but apparently with some strength regained, Vanessa stood, without saying anything further, and took some exploratory steps towards the carpark, looking around, peering behind the steps we'd just spent so long traversing.  'Are you waiting to be picked up by someone?' I asked, after she didn't seem to be making progress to any particular car.

'No,' she said.  I waited for further explanation, which I was worried wasn't going to come, until Vanessa moved distressingly close to me.  Leaning in to my face, she said, without emotion, 'This is embarrassing.  My car is on the other side of the platform.'  She smiled widely.

I closed my eyes for a few seconds.  'Are you sure?' I asked.  'The other side of the platform is all bus stops...'
'Yes,' she nodded, looking back up the stairs.  'I was confused.  But that is where I'm parked.  I know where my car is.'

I sighed, and asked if she was sure that her car was on the other side, and if she would like help to move her bag back across the bridge.  "Oh!" smiled Vanessa.  "You're too kind.  Why are you so kind?"

I told her to come on, suggesting we use the long, winding ramp, rather than the stairs for the return journey.  As I wheeled the case to the start of the ramp, Vanessa started toddling off in a different direction.  I called out to her, telling her it was this way.  She didn't acknowledge the error, and I started up the ramp to the first of several landings on the ramp leading upwards.  Noticing her lagging behind, struggling to keep up with the pace I'd deliberately slowed, I slowed further.  Catching up to me, Vanessa took another break, leaning against the rails of the ramp.  When she started moving again, I let her lead, noticing that the effort was causing her to sway.  I didn't open conversation.  Vanessa started to a few times, only asking if I minded helping her.  Hearing the effort of combining speech with movement, I cut her off each time, telling her not to worry.

By the time we'd made it to the top of the ramp, Vanessa was visbily staggering, to the point that I'd lunged forward a couple of times, thinking I'd need to at least steady her so she didn't fall into the concrete bridge we were walking on.  When she stopped to lean against the glass panel overlooking the train tracks below to recover from the climb, I nodded in the direction of the darkness at the opposide end of the bridge.

'That's where you parked?' I indicated.  'Over there?'

Vanessa may have nodded, I wasn't sure.  By now, she seemed completely depleted of energy.  But a plan had formed in my mind.  If I could guide her into the station building, perhaps I could gain the attention of the ever-present station staff or even the group of police officers I'd noticed earlier to leave her in their care.

'Tell me when you're ready to keep going,' I told her.  She nodded, took a few steps, then stopped, swaying, and collapsed, her water bottle falling to the ground.  I lurched forward, and propped her up.  Vanessa's mass was significantly more than my own, though, and I struggled against her weight, able only to stop her fall, and lower her instead to the ground where she sat.  She sat in silence for a while, before trying to get up, telling me something I couldn't decipher, and offering me her closed fist, an action I didn't understand the meaning of.  Failing at standing, she remained leaning against the glass wall.

Looking into the station, I tried to gain the attention of station staff, but, for once, I couldn't see them pacing inside.  'Tell me something,' Vanessa slurred from the ground.

'What?' I asked, still looking into the station.  'What do you want to know?'

'Tell me a joke,' she smiled, her tongue, swollen, perhaps, appearing to get in the way of clear speech.  I considered that this is how the dying speak in action movies.  I reeled one off which I had read on my work's pathetic Yammer joke community.  She made a sound that I suppose was laughter, before she looked up.  'Hey... What's your name?'  I told her, and as she started to tell me her name, I cut her off, telling her I remembered her name.  Before I'd even finished, she asked my name again, and for a joke.

While I'd been on the look-out for staff inside the station to wave over, I'd noticed a young guy with a BMX spending a while ordering from a vending machine.  He spotted me in what must have appeared a strange situation.  He asked if I needed help.  I nodded discretely.  He asked 'You want me to call the cops?'

From the ground, Vanessa unleashed a sudden, gurgling growl.  I looked down, then back to the guy  'No,' I said, loud enough for him to hear.  'Can you see the station staff around?  Just wave them over.'

'No!' Vanessa gripped my pants leg.  'No, don't call the cops!'

I told her that I wasn't, but said that I'd waved to the station staff.  'Maybe they can think of somewhere better for you to sit for a while...' I said, seeing station staff inside, finally.  I wasn't sure if they'd noticed me waving to them, but thought I saw them look over, and sharply away.

'You can't!' Vanessa gurgled.  'You can't get the police...'

She kept talking, and I said stuff quietly, still trying to wave the attention of the staff.  Behind them, I saw the boy on the BMX appear at the other end of the platform, pointing in my direction.  The crew of police officers I'd passed when I first arrived at the station followed his directions over to me.  I don't remember what the group asked, but an officer, waved me away while some of his colleagues kneeled down near Vanessa.

'I'm Nathan,' he started.  'What happened here?'

I told him I'd found Vanessa on the stairs, and offered to help her with her bag, and that I thought she'd exhausted herself carrying it, but that now I wasn't sure.

The officer asked for my name, and told me his again.  He asked me if I knew the woman, to which I said I didn't.  I heard his colleague asking Vanessa 'Who is Mimi?'  The officer asked me where I had been, and where I was going, and I told him.  He asked for identification, and I had to explain why my license and passport both had my previous address on them.  He told me he was conerned about the woman's mannerisms, and asked me if she was using drugs.

'I don't know, man,' I said.  'I only met her ten minutes ago...'

'I just came from down the road,' I heard Vanessa complaining behind the officer.

'You're good to lend a hand,' the officer told me.  'By the way, my name is Nathan.  Keep up the good work.'

I, finally, said goodnight, and walked quickly back down the stairs.  I didn't look back or even listen to what was happening on the bridge behind me.  Once I got home, though, I did take a look through my binoculars, and saw that the group of officers was still tending to the woman on the railway overpass.  Watching from afar, I recalled a couple of previous incidents, also on public transport, where I'd assisted people, several years ago.  A couple of times, people had reprimanded me when I reacted negatively to the exaggerated displays of gratitude shown.  A quote has stayed with me:  'Why do you even bother to help if you don't want thanks?'  Again tonight, I wonder why I do.  I always thought it was, in some holistic sense, required of humans.  Wasn't that the point of an infamous Seinfeld plot at some point?  I was never a fan, so I don't know.  But as recently as last month, members of what my colleagues refer to as my 'Tram Club' mocked me for helping a mother lift her child-laden pram onto the tram.  Maybe they were right to do so.  So little benefit come from helping people, and usually there is some annoying burden too.
  • Current Music
    Did You Miss Me (I'm A Veronica) - The Veronicas
max's eyes

finalList of the decade (2010 - 2019)...

Ball Park Music - Frank
Cub Sport - Come On Mess Me Up
Elliphant - Love Me Badder
Hellions - Nightliner Rhapsody
Major Lazer - Jessica {Ft. Ezra Koenig}
Metric - Speed The Collapse
Nothing By Thieves - Amsterdam
The Rubens - My Gun
SAFIA - Paranoia, Ghosts & Other Sounds
Vampire Weekend - Step
rion psychic

Something Has Changed...

The man is an artist.  The woman is a consultant of some kind contacted for police investigations.  They had met in unlikely circumstances but found themselves drawn together socially, despite their differences.  After his son goes to bed, the artist prefers to debate the nature of the universe over a glass of wine, admiring the sea views from his (barely) converted warehouse home curiosity.  The sometimes-detective would rather a more adventurous evening, her penchant for sports cars and fast driving often impressing or intimidating her dates.

After meeting professionally, they'd each tried to ignore their mutual attractions, but had easily fallen into a pattern of 'dating,' (although neither had ever used such a word to describe the relationship.)  Each found the other fascinating, delighting in each new revelation, none of them feeling like a complete surprise.

I don't remember how I became involved with the pair, but tonight I've been assisting the 'detective' in her investigation, my insight apparently unique and useful (a compliment which, I can't deny, I feel pride in.)  The artist's son has accompanied us for reasons I don't think were ever really explained to me, and he now sits in the passenger seat next to the detective on the driver's side.  From the dark back seat of the current-model Porsche 911, I watch the detective shift her eyes from the road to the boy from time to time, surprised yet impressed with how easily she has been able to connect with the boy, the first time she's had much reason to interact with someone so young.  I understand the look completely as she glides the car quickly through the sparse evening traffic, even though we are not in a rush.

As we draw nearer to the dock on which the artist's warehouse home sits, I notice the driver cast another glance at the boy, this time a brief one filled with concern, though she makes no comment and returns her focus to the road ahead.  A moment later, and I understand the cause of her expression.  The sight of flashing emergency lights becomes visible to me in the sports car's back seats.
None of us speak as drive closer to the lights and the car slows.  All three sets of eyes in the car are locked onto the distinctly human shape which has been covered by a tarpaulin, shockingly bright blue amidst the assemblage of police outside the warehouse.

An electronic tone draws my attention from the form beneath the blue sheet.  Loud but not obtrusive, it is distinctly not organic to the scene, and goes unnoticed by the other two occupants of the vehicle.  Taking one last look at the shape on the dock, I acknowledge the source of the sound, and wake up to switch off the alerm ringing on my new mobile phone.  I smile to myself at the potential of the dream I've woken from, and sigh at the knowledge that, like the last episode of a prematurely cancelled television series, this story will not be continued.

I used to have detailed dreams like this reguarly, and kept dated notebooks outlining their plots, should I need to refer to them for some reason - inspiration, perhaps, or curiosity.  The dreams didn't stop, but did stop being as detailed or easy to remember.  Based upon the dates of the notebooks, I theorised that I suddenly started remembering my dreams due to the use of Tegretol and noted that the notebooks have less entries after I ceased using the drug.

The content of the dreams could certainly be explained.  Themes have continued through my life to this day.  A recurring element is my missing some catastrophic event whilst being inside a building for work.  I could always tell I was working too many hours, and sacrificing too much time, when things like that happened within my dreams.  Obviously, since I haven't been working a lot, and variously at that, this plot hasn't been evident recently.

But something has changed.  I've started remembering my dreams, and dreaming vivid plots like I used to, in the last few months.  Perhaps my mind is understimulated.  I don't know if medication could be an influence - I haven't spoken to anyone about my dosage in eight years - but I am not dissatisfied with the symptom anyway.  A highlight was a dream in which agents Mulder and Scully were interviewing me about the sudden appearance of a second sun in the Earth's sky.

I guess I'll just enjoy this while it lasts.
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rion psychic

finalList 2019...

Alex Lahey - Am I Doing It Right?
Harper Finn - Conversations (With The Moon)
Lana Del Rey - The greatest
PUP - Morbid Stuff
Rex Orange County - New House
Skynd - Tyler Hadley
Slowly Slowly - Creature Of Habit Pt. 2
Thelma Plum - Better In Blak
Tones And I - Johnny Run Away
Thornhill - In My Skin
max's eyes

shortList 2019...

100 - Weightless
A Day To Remember - Degenerates
Aitch - Buss Down {Ft. ZieZie}
Alex Lahey - Don't Be So Hard On Yourself
Alex Lahey - Am I Doing It Right?
Alex Lahey - Interior Demeanour
Ali Barter - Ur A Piece Of Shit
Ali Barter - History Of Boys
Alice Skye - I Feel Better But I Don't Feel Good
Alison Wonderland - Peace
Allday - Restless {Ft. The Veronicas}
American Football - Uncomfortably Numb {Ft. Hayley Williams}
Amyl and The Sniffers - Monsoon Rock
Angel Olsen - All Mirrors
Angie McMahon - Pasta
A•sgeir - Youth
Ashe - In Disguise
BABYMETAL - Shanti Shanti Shanti
Bad//Dreems - Sonny
Bag Raiders - Lightning {Ft. The Kite String Tangle}
Baker Boy - Meditjin {Ft. JessB}
Bakers Eddy - Can't Afford It
Barrie - Clovers
Beautiful Monument, The - Deceiver
Bec Sandridge - EYES WIDE
Beck - Saw Lightning {Ft. Pharrell}
Beck - Uneventful Days
BENEE - Find An Island
benny blanco & Juice WRLD - Graduation
Big Thief - Century
Billie Eilish - all the good girls go to hell
Billie Eilish - bury a friend
Billie Eilish - my strange addiction
Billie Eilish - xanny
Birdz - Black Child {Ft. Mojo Juju}
BLESSED - Memoirs Of The Melancholy
BOI - Imaginary Boys
Boo Seeka - Rush
Boston Manor - Liquid {Ft. John Floreani}
Bring Me The Horizon - heavy metal {ft. Rahzel}
Bring Me The Horizon - mother tongue
Broods - Sucker
Butterfly Effect, The - Unbroken
Cage The Elephant - Ready To Let Go
Catfish And The Bottlemen - 2all
Catfish And The Bottlemen - Encore
Ceres - Me & You
CHAI - Choose Go!
Chance The Rapper - Ballin Flossin
Chance The Rapper - Hot Shower
Chats, The - Pub Feed
Circa Waves - Movies
Clairo - Alewife
Crooked Colours - Never Dance Alone {Ft. Ladyhawke}
Cry Club - DFTM
Cry Club - Two Hearts
Cub Sport - Party Pill
CXLOE - Devil You Don't
Dave - Black
Dean Lewis - 7 Minutes
Dean Lewis - Hold Of Me
Dear Seattle - Daytime TV
Dear Seattle - Try
Denzel Curry - RICKY
Dizzy - Twist
Dune Rats - Rubber Arm
DZ Deathrays - Year Of The Dog {Ft. Matt Caughthran}
Eat Your Heart Out - Carousel
Erthlings - Returning
Fergus James - Mistakes
FIDLAR - By Myself
FIDLAR - Flake
Foals - On The Luna
Foals - Black Bull
Foals - The Runner
Fractures - Chains {Ft. ROZES}
Frank Carter & The Rattlesnakes - Anxiety
G Flip - Lover
girl in red - dead girl in the pool.
Gracie Abrams - Stay
Green Buzzard - I Don't Want To Be Alone
Greta Stanley - Kick
Haiku Hands - Dare You Not To Dance
HAIM - Summer Girl
Half Moon Run - Then Again
Harper Finn - Conversations (With The Moon)
Hayley Mary - The Piss, The Perfume
Hein Cooper - The Fear {triple j Like A Version 2019}
Hilltop Hoods - Be Yourself {Ft. Ecca Vandal/Nyassa}
Hilltop Hoods - OOFT (Ponda Baba)
Hobo Johnson - Typical Story
Hockey Dad - I Missed Out
Holy Holy - Teach Me About Dying
Holy Holy - Maybe You Know
I Know Leopard - All That She Cared About
I Prevail - Breaking Down
I Prevail - Paranoid
Illy - Then What
Injury Reserve - Jailbreak The Tesla {Ft. Aminé}
Jack River - Adolescent
Jai Wolf - Lose My Mind {Ft. Mr Gabriel}
James Blake - Don't Miss It
John Floreani - Echoes
Kat Edwards - Good Girl
Kevin Abstract - Baby Boy
King Gizzard & The Lizard Wizard - Cyboogie
King Gizzard & The Lizard Wizard - Planet B
Kingswood - Say You Remember
Kira Puru - Why Don't We Get Along
Lana Del Rey - Doin' Time
Lana Del Rey - The greatest
Lizzo - Cuz I Love You
Love Fame Tragedy - Backflip
LSD - Heaven Can Wait
Mansionair - Alibi
Meg Mac - I'm Not Coming Back
Methyl Ethel - All The Elements
Methyl Ethel - Ruiner
Mickey Kojak - Video Games
MID CITY - Fake Friends Forever
Milky Chance - Daydreaming {Ft. Tash Sultana}
Milky Chance - Fado
Miss June - Anomaly
Montaigne - Losing My Mind
Montaigne - Love Might Be Found (Volcano)
Murlocs, The - Comfort Zone
mxmtoon - Blame Game
Nilüfer Yanya - In Your Head
Ocean Grove - Ask For The Anthem
Ocean Sleeper - Light In My Dark
Of Monsters And Men - Alligator
Olympia - Hounds
Owl Eyes - You Don't Know Love {Ft. Tapz}
Palehound - Killer
Phantogram - Mister Impossible
Polish Club - Breakapart
Polish Club - Iguana
Pond - Daisy
Poppy - Scary Mask (feat. Fever 333)
Post Malone - Goodbyes {Ft. Young Thug}
Press Club - Get Better
Psychedelic Porn Crumpets - Hymn For A Droid
PUP - Free At Last
PUP - Morbid Stuff
PUP - See You At Your Funeral
Rapsody - Ibtihaj {Ft. D'Angelo & GZA}
RedHook - Paralysed
Rex Orange County - New House
Rex Orange County - 10/10
Rex Orange County - It Gets Better
Rich Brian - 100 Degrees
Rich Brian - Yellow {Ft. Bekon}
Rubens, The - Live In Life
Ruby Fields - Trouble
Ruel - Free Time
S.L.P., The - Favourites {Ft. Little Simz}
SAFIA - Resolution
SAFIA - Think We're Not Alone
Sahara Beck - Queen Of Hearts
Sam Fender - Hypersonic Missiles
Sam Fender - Will We Talk?
SebAstian - Run For Me {Ft. Gallant}
SKYND - Tyler Hadley
Sløtface - Telepathetic
Slow Pulp - High
Slowly Slowly - Jellyfish
Slowly Slowly - Creature Of Habit Pt. 2
SOAK - Deja Vu
Stand Atlantic - Hate Me (Sometimes)
Stella Donnelly - Lunch
Stormzy - Vossi Bop
Tame Impala - Borderline
Thelma Plum - Better In Blak
Thelma Plum - Homecoming Queen
Thornhill - Nurture
Thornhill - In My Skin
Thornhill - Lily & The Moon
Tones And I - Johnny Run Away
Tones And I - Dance Monkey
Tones And I - The Kids Are Coming
TOWNS - Safe To Stay
Tyler, The Creator - I THINK
Tyne-James Organ - Something New
Vampire Weekend - This Life
Vanns, The - Deranged
Voyager - Colours
WAAX - Big Grief
Washington - American Spirit
Wave Racer - AUTO
Wave Racer - This N That {Ft. Lunchmoney Lewis}
Weeknd, The - Blinding Lights
Windwaker - My Empire
Yeasayer - Fluttering In The Floodlights
YUNGBLUD & Halsey - 11 Minutes {Ft. Travis Barker}
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haw flake

Cola Festival 2019...

Coca-Cola Energy:
I always like the chance to try something new from Coca-Cola (and, it was their pre-summer release schedule that inspired the timing of the festival for August,) so I was glad to see something quite different from the brand - an energy drink version branded as simple Coca-Cola Energy.

I tried the regular version, with a sugar-free option available. (The can design for each is almost indistinguishable, so I didn't even realise I had choices to consider until later.)  The flavour was interesting, with the tang common to energy drinks, but less pronounced than in V or RedEye.  The cola flavour is not the distinctive Coke taste, but more of a vintage cola.  Overall it wasn't a bad addition to both the cola and energy drink market, though one that was hardly groundbreaking.

Soda Press Co. Blonde Cola:
Soda Press Co. are another welcome addition to the apparently burgeoning DIY soda syrup game.  Whilst sitting alongside Soda King and even SodaStream syrups on the shelf Soda Press's syrups might seem a costlier option, the larger bottles seem as concentrated as Soda King's, so the difference is a wash.  Soda Press also produce more exotic flavours, though my first attempt, when I excitedly tried their pink graprefruit syrup, made me realise I mix a lot less grapefruit cocktails than I had thought I might.  A new flavour, Blonde Cola, arrived in time for this year's festival.

When I mixed it, I wasn't sure I had the dosage right.  I'd been expecting the liquid to remain mostly clear, like Bart Simpson's Clear Cola which was available in the early 1990s (peculiarly sold in a car, negating the product's novel clarity) or the new Coca-Cola Clear released in Japan.  Mixed at the prescribed dosage, the result is a pale, almost ginger ale colour.  The bouquet, though, is distinctively cola, almost like the flavour of those Japanese cola bottle lollies.  The flavour was refreshing, though not as distinctively cola as the scent.  I am excited to try the drink as a mixer, and especially curious about how it will work with gin.  It seems like a perfect match for Canadian whisky, being less dry than ginger ale, and not so strong as to neutralise the whisky's flavour.

Pepsi 1893:
I'd been looking forward to trying PepsiCo's (presumably) heritage recipe since I'd first spotted its appearance, but it took until the Festival to do so.  Unfortunately, I think the reduction in price is probably a sign of the discontinuation of the product line, rather than a generous celebration.
I tried the Original Cola flavour first, and was very impressed.  As expected, it had the base of what I tend to call a vintage cola, but was also more carbonated than these typically tend to be.  Beneath that, deeper flavours rose in the aftertaste, almost like the calm slowBurn of a spirit.  The cola taste was followed by nutty, spicey flavours that truly are quite unique in this market.  I even started to wonder if the drink, as well as being refreshing in the afternoon, might have the medicinal qualities of Pepsin as Brad's Drink had originally intended.

The following day, I sampled the Ginger Cola variant, pleased to find another Ginger Cola on the market after CCA's short-lived attempt.  I was even more pleased when I opened the can: the ginger scent is immediately apparent, but the taste was not overwhelming, as it was in Coke's ginger edition.  The result was an instantly refreshing drink, the perfect balance of traditional cola and ginger spice, added with the right amount of carbonation.  PepsiCo's 1893 varieties were a nice change, and it would be good if they could stay around.

Bickford's Kola Nut:
Another syrup, this one is described, oddly, as being archival. Like the 1893 Pepsi, this was clearly reduced as a deleted product rather than in recognition of the Cola Festival (the entire shelf was marked 'Reduced to Clear.')  For $1 per bottle, I thought it was worth a try.  Mixed with soda water, the concoction didn't have a lot of flavour.  Even when mixing well beyond the recommended dosage, the result was mediocre, with slight hints of a Sunnyboy Cola taste, but it is so faint as to render it meaningless.

Nexba Cola:
Billed as 'Naturally Refreshing,' Nexba Cola is one that I have seen and been tempted by at Festivals for at least the last few years, but have never actually sampled.  Something about the product never appealed to me.  Maybe it was the 1990s style graphics on the packaging.  Unfortunately, the flavour also had the same impact on me.  It wasn't bad, and was certainly a refreshing drink as advertised.  It was just kind of bland.  The cola taste was indistinct, and perhaps even closer to something like Creaming Soda.

Lo Bros Organic Cola Kombucha:
Despite being surrounded by Kombucha in my previous job, where everyone seemed to drink variations of the drink at lunch time in my last couple of years, I had never actually tried it before this festival.  I had not realised the drink is promoted as a probiotic, I guess a more refreshing alternative to Yakult, and maybe something with health benefits.  I was not interested in that though, and was just here for the taste.

This was distinctly something with a cola flavour, rather than a pure cola, but the flavour was there nevertheless.  Combined with the flavour was a kind of dryness, like the texture of ginger ale, which was not unwelcome and did not make the drink any less refreshing.  I was also pleased to find that there was a slight carbonation, though not as much as I might usually like.  Still, the drink would certainly be a nice refreshment in warm weather.
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