Hello, world. I’m MacDara Conroy, and this is my blog.


Date: February 2018

With all the snow business, Govt quietly slipped out that minimum passing distance for cyclists is to be made law. And about time, too #tweet

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Wow, that extra 20 quid in fuel allowance is really gonna cover all that heating use when winter fuel prices are through the roof #tweet

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#MWE Day 25: Turnstile - Time & Space. Yeah, I don’t get it. Nice guitar tone, but the songs are samey and I don’t remember it 2 mins later #tweet

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#MWE Day 24: Killing Joke - Outside the Gate. “Hey, this shitty fake horn sample sounds great, let’s put it all over the album!” PARP! #tweet

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Slacking off on #MWE listening as I’ve been playing Killing Joke’s Fire Dances over and over the past few days #tweet

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Ah, Elimination Chamber; it was grand till they had Roman win after Braun did all the hard work #tweet

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Book review — Choosing Death: The Improbable History of Death Metal and Grindcore, by Albert Mudrian

An easy, breezy read about the biggest bands that defined extreme metal, much of it in their own words. It’s focused on a select few names, which is both good and bad: good in that it doesn’t get bogged down in enyclopaedic details (it doesn’t pretend to be a comprehensive history) but bad in its Euro-American bias, more or less footnoting the contributions of bands and scenes in Asia and South America, not to mention lesser-known acts in the regions it does cover. Perhaps some of that is rectified in the updated edition (I read the original, from 2004) yet in any case, it leaves room for someone else to write that history unwritten here. More…

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#MWE Day 23: Insect Ark - Marrow Hymns. Doom with droning lap steel and an intimate, dry rhythm section; shades of Pelican and Earth #tweet

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Missed two Mets spring training games so far this year, drat! #tweet

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When the Facebook Traffic Goes Away

The more I think about it, the more I come to the conclusion that Facebook is a destructive, eroding force for banal evil in the world. The negatives outweigh the positives to an alarming degree. #link

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#MWE Day 22: Killing Joke - Brighter Than a Thousand Suns. Imagine Night Time but toothless; there are memorable songs in here somewhere… #tweet

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Moved on to Fire Dances now, which is basically if Adam Ant went metal #tweet

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Killing Joke’s ‘Love Like Blood’ on repeat this afternoon #tweet

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People: I know, wrestling journalism, but Dave Meltzer’s dodgy ethics are fairly cut and dried now. There are other places to get your dirt #tweet

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Up late tinkering with my website. Tags are live now, but they only go back about a year since migrating from MT meant I lost all previous #tweet

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#MWE Day 21: Flesh World - The Wild Animals In My Life. Hazy, shoegazy post-punk that’s bigger on atmosphere than hooks, but it works #tweet

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#MWE Day 20: The Young Gods - S/T. Francophone Swiss counterpart to Swans or Big Black with more art to the others’ noise #tweet

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#MWE Day 19: Killing Joke - Revelations. The crossing over from their early industrial churn to stadium-filling glory anthems begins here #tweet

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Spent the day in bed under the weather, watching Homeland with Daryl #tweet

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#MWE Day 18: Today Is the Day - Willpower. Stick a hood on me and call me Skeletor ‘cause my face just melted off #tweet

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This Rude/Piper cage match from Supertape II on the Network has some really fun spots #tweet

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#MWE Day 17: Sodom - Obsessed by Cruelty. Ripping first-wave black metal that teeters on the verge of collapse throughout #tweet

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Ten Long Years of Trying to Make Armie Hammer Happen

It’s amazing to me how many people took this article as a personal attack when it’s really about ‘Armie Hammer’ the carefully crafted phenomenon, not necessarily a judgement of the person. I mean, there’s no doubt he’s one of a long line of white male Hollywood stars who’ve benefitted from the privilege that gives them the chances so often denied to others, whether through unconscious bias or Weinstein-esque bad faith acting. #link

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Also just spent a couple of hours rejigging my website’s CSS from px to em/rem and I don’t think I’ve broken anything #tweet

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Posted my form for the Seanad Register yesterday. Fellow NUI graduates, you’ve got a few days left to get your records updated #tweet

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#MWE Day 16: Behavior - 375 Images of Angels. Ramshackle art-damaged post-punk that’s just barely held together; I can dig #tweet

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#MWE Day 15: Annihilator - Alice In Hell. Cleaner and drier than my preference, but the riffs cannot be denied (HT @FracturedSeries) #tweet

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They’re playing the Ultimate Warrior’s theme music during the ice hockey at the Winter Olympics #tweet

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#MWE Day 14: Alien She - Feeler. Alternately broody and energetic retro post-punk with a killer guitar tone #tweet

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It’s so weird watching the Rockers/Hart Foundation in 1990 and knowing that 2 years later, Bret and Shawn would be headlining a PPV #tweet

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16 months after Irish Water’s contractors shredded the place, they’re finally resurfacing McSwiney St #tweet

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My Letterboxd reviews for December 2017 & January 2018

A scene from the 2016 anime film Your Name.

Late with my monthnotes, and late with my Letterboxd reviews as well. Since we’re well into the new year by now, I’m overdue in noting that I logged 171 viewings over the course of 2017, which is about 50 more than I managed the previous year.

Even accounting for the fact that some were shorter (circa 1 hr) documentaries, that’s still a better than average showing. Mind you, I didn’t write as many full-length reviews as I have in previous years, but it surely indicates I was watching more for my own enjoyment and/or edification. (That also classifies as CPD as far as I’m concerned.) More…

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How long do parcels normally take to get from Japan to Ireland? It’s been a month and I’m still waiting on an eBay purchase #tweet

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I’m way overdue for a haircut #tweet

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The Guardian’s series on Underground Music in 2017

“Does the underground still exist in a world where everything is visible online?” That’s a silly question, in that the answer is an obvious ‘YES’ and that it also presupposes that everything is visible online, when it patently isn’t. But it’s still good to see an august paper like The Guardian dive in and share what it's found. #link

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#MWE Day 13: Stoat - Try Not To Think About It. Middle-aged ennui thru offbeat indie, strongest in its taut numbers #tweet

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#MWE Day 12: Team Dresch - Personal Best. Political post-hardcore meets sweet indie jangle and the whole thing goes off like a powder keg #tweet

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Who wants to join my Dune-themed Elton John tribute band? We’re called Benny and the Gesserits #tweet

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#MWE Day 11: Blind Guardian - Nightfall in Middle-Earth. I admire the vision and commitment here, but power metal is aggressively Not For Me #tweet

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