• Under Byen - Det Er Mig Der Holder Træerne Sammen

    Under Byen is like Efterklang also a Danish group. They play rock music with a sensitive touch.

    I always tend to be inclined towards rockbands with female lead singers, and if they are from Scandinavia they must be great. Under Byen is no exception, except that they are exceptionally different since you won’t find a guitar in the band (well, there is a bass player, but no lead).

    Det Er Mig Der Holder Træerne Sammen is the second album of Under Byen and is, stylewise, a continuation of their first album, Kyst. All lyrics are Danish, which is of course very interesting, but hard to follow. Luckily, there is the website Always on the Run which can give us translations of each and every song Under Byen released. Here, we learn that the albumtitle means ‘It is me who holds the trees together’ and ‘Under Byen’ means ‘Below the city’.

    A download of the title song Det Er Mig Der Holder Træerne Sammen is available for download from their website.

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  • Efterklang - Tripper

    Efterklang (Flash only site) uses a very special electronic percussion and base sounds which reminds of Kraftwerk’s drum computers. This combined with the soft voices and acoustic instruments (trumpet, flügelhorn, piano) gives the music this very unique sound

    Efterklang is a Danish group and the name means something like aftersound, or reverberation. On the album Tripper they play together with Amina, who already had done ( ) with Sigur Rós.

    You can download the video clip for Swarming (Quicktime) (WMV) from the groups web shop which gives a very good idea of their music.

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  • Introduction to the music section

    This is a special section of my journal where I’ll now and then post links to music artists I like. Posts on music I already posted will be moved here, keeping their original publication date, so you’ll notice that this introduction is not the first post… Well, so be it.

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  • De Schijvenaer

    Over the last few months I spent some time on a website for a colleague of my father. They started a mini camping this year and wanted a nice website.

    So I started off once again on a job I never wanted to do again: Creating a website for a broad public (i.e. mostly Internet Explorer users). Having had some annoying experiences two years ago with the Spacelabs RGE project, I almost swore never again to write a site with IE in mind. However, something changed in the last two years. It was not the browser, it was not the XHTML and CSS standards, it was me. Two years ago terms like “semantic HTML” were mostly unknown to me and sites were written in some form of XHTML abusing the beautiful table-tag.

    Enter 2004 and the CSS Zen Garden which is a site demonstrating the possibilities of what can be achieved visually through CSS. The site exists in a multitude of CSS files, but only one single XHTML file, which is exactly the same for every single design.

    One of the key requirements of a CSS to be accepted to CSS Zen Garden is that it has to work on “most” browsers, which of course includes Internet Explorer. The nice thing about that requirement is that the CSS files are thus compatible with most renderers (MSIE, Gecko and KHTML are the biggest right now, Opera usually also works); create your site in the same structure, and you’ll already have a mostly working version!

    This is what I did with de site for Mini-Camping de Schijvenaer which works in all browsers, except for the image of the Schijvenaer. This is a little extra for non-IE users…

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  • iTunes 4.9 with Podcasting

    The idea of podcasting intrigued me, but since there were no really user-friendly applications (from my point of view) handling podcasts, I never really got into it.

    Last tuesday, Apple released an updated version of iTunes which integrates Podcasting into their Music Store and they did it very well. So, I decided to listen what the fuss is all about and subscribed to the Daily Source Code, Adam Curry’s podcast.

    I also subscribed to some other feeds to check the quality of the broadcasts. Now, the content isn’t always of very high quality, but the idea of never again miss a radio show because you didn’t turn your radio on too late is great!

    Already quite a few bloggers are doing podcasting in audio and some of them even do video broadcasts. I hear great success stories from Adam Curry, about how unknown bands become famous just by having their song played on a podcast. They would never get on regional radio, let alone national, so that is pretty cool. But then again, Curry is of course one of the initiators of the whole podcasting thing, so it might be a little bit biased.

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  • Orion back once again and Planet Luon

    Well, revived Orion once again, this time back in its old case with its old mainboard and all is back as it was before we got the new (cursed?) hardware. So I just hope things will run smoothly until I say it to stop instead of stopping on its own.

    In the meantime, Paul and Bram apparently created Planet Luon and put me on it, so you’ll find my journal there as well! A two-feed planet is kind of boring I thought, but it appears that both Admar and Bram started blogging this month, so now we’re four.

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  • Mac mini

    Dad and I bought mom a Mac mini for her birthday, to try to get her to use a computer.

    The first reaction of anyone seeing the device is of course something like, “Wow, that’s small, how do they fit it in there?”. In fact, they don’t. It is basically a laptop without screen, so all the components are already very small and can be crammed into a small space. Nevertheless, the design of both case and internals are impressive and it might very well be a successful companion to an iPod for current PC-users (since that is wat Apple is aiming at).

    I don’t know how one would call going from no computer-user at all to a Mac-user, but would Apple consider it “switching”? More about the “switch” of my mother will come in a few weeks.

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  • Herman van Veen

    It has been a while since I wrote something here. Yesterday I was surprised with a visit to Herman van Veen, a Dutch singer and one of the creators of Alfred Jodocus Kwak. The school where my dad teaches is merged this year with another one and one of the festivities was this special gig of Herman van Veen for every employee with their partner.

    It was a nice evening, Herman is doing his 60th birthday tour this year together with band; Erik van der Wurff, Edith Leerkes and Wieke Garcia and two more who’s name I couldn’t make out. He’s doing old songs and new ones, the new ones being partly political, partly emotional. He is rethinking his life, thinking back about his mother, about his daughter as a baby, but also letting Edith sing a funny song about what she would have done should she’d be a man.

    I won’t try to translate some lines into English, since he can do it very much better than I.

    Maar mocht ‘t nodig zijn, ik haal je uit de diepste
    de diepste kraters van m’n hart, m’n lijf, m’n liefde.
    Dat je me één keer vasthoudt heb ik liever
    dan heel de wereld bij mekaar.

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  • Sigur Rós in Paradiso!

    A nice surprise yesterday when I came on the Sigur Rós website. They come to the Netherlands on their 2005 tour! 13 July is the day, Paradiso Amsterdam the place. I’ll be there, who’ll be joining me?

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  • Happy Easter from Düsseldorf

    I’ve been visting family in Düsseldorf this weekend, it was my uncle’s birthday and we went to his party in an Altstadt (downtown) café.

    Easter Monday we went to walk along the Rhein to take a look at the new quarter called MedienHafen. Modeled after the London Docklands, this old harbour area got a thorough restyle and is now becoming a vivid (and probably expensive, judging by the many Porsches, Jaguars and one Hummer) place to live and work.

    Behind the WDR Funkhaus building (which existed there quite some time already), three buildings designed by Frank Gehry called Der Neue Zollhof are the first pieces of modern architecture to appear in this area. Some old warehouses got a restyle, others were torn down and got replaced by glass boxes. Most of them aren’t very interesting, but it is the “Gehry-Bauten” as they are called by the Düsseldorfers which are the landmarks of this newly developed quarter.

    Some photos I took: First an impression of the Rhein-Promenade, which was created around 1990 with the building of a tunnel between Oberkasselerbrücke and Kniebrücke (both bridges can be seen in the first picture). Before the tunnel existed, there was no real possibility to get anywhere near the water from the city center. Photos 11 and 12 show the Landtag building, the administration of Nordrhein Westfalen, of which Düsseldorf is the capital. The tower is called the Rheinturm and was built in 1981, it features the largest decimal clock in the world. The rest of the photos are all buildings part of MedienHafen.

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  • Newest acquisitions

    Today I picked up Dancer in the Dark (starring Björk) and Ágætis Byrjun (by Sigur Rós) at the Free Record Shop, which I ordered two weeks ago. Both took a bit longer than was to be expected.

    Since I was in the city anyway, I decided to hop by the local Apple Centre to take a good look at the Mac mini. On my way back I went to Van Leest and bought Homogenic by Björk.

    In case you’re wondering what he’s doing with all this Icelandic stuff lately… Indeed, I’m intrigued by this little country in the northwestern corner of Europe and its people, language, culture… I would really like to go there some day and see for myself, maybe even do an internship? Esther must have infected me with the Iceland virus ;-)

    Meanwhile in Eindhoven, the weather is nice, it’s not too hot, yet warm enough to sit on a terrace in the sun. Knowing Dutch weather however, this isn’t going to last long and the weather will change in a few days.

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  • Spacelabs movie night

    Like every Thursday, it was Spacelabs movie night. Rico joined the movie watchers club, so we had to have a re-run on a previous movie. Tonight we watched Shrek 2 (second time) and Napoleon Dynamite (third time now).

    The absolute stupidity of the things that happen in Napoleon Dynamite astound me time and time again. It’s just brilliant how someone can make a movie that must have a storyline of about one A4 paper, yet make it a full one and a half hour feature film. The humor consists mainly of painfully recognizable embarrassing moments on the part of Napoleon and the absolute idiocy of his brother and uncle.

    Well, I’ve had enough Napoleon for a while now. Next time we’ll really need a little more intelligent movie. Oh, and thanks Rico for the beer and baguette, that’ll have to be made up to you somehow.

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