12-Feb-2012 X Is For X-Ray

Or XBMC… or Xara…

It’s also for X marks the spot and Xeryus… huh? After shave, that’s what. Believe it or not, Jimmy does splash it on occasionally – actually, he sprays it on. A friendly assistant in Boots told us the difference between spray and splash on, and it seems the sprays are mostly stronger and longer lasting than their counterpart non-sprays. Y’see, Jimmy’s Xeryus Rouge is getting low and so we thought maybe we’d try a different after shave once in a while. Well, it’s not easy – there are just so many to choose from. OK, the range for men is nowhere near as extensive as the range of perfumes for women – but isn’t that always the case? Women are blessed (or cursed?) with so many choices when it comes to clothes, and shoes, and accessories and all manner of stuff… how come there’s so little available in purple for men? Haven’t they heard of jiva? (Ah, but that’s another story – and we digress.) After you’ve sprayed lots of stuff onto those tester sticks, and some on your hands and wrists it becomes difficult to remember one from another. Some of them are quite sickly, some too sharp, some insipid, some plain awful – but none quite hit the spot. The closest we found was Paco Rabanne XS – it’ll be a few weeks before we make the switch, but watch out for a waft of it at a gig near you before too long.

We’ve been very good lately… honestly, yes, really. We went to look at and play a seldom seen Taylor guitar – a custom build jumbo 915CE with Florentine cutaway… the first one we’ve ever heard of. But, like the after shaves, it didn’t quite hit the spot either – lovely guitar, looked well with our existing Taylors, sounded good on its own acoustically and amplified, and was OK when played alongside Val’s Custom Jumbo 12-string or 910CE dreadnought… but, there’s the difference… only OK. It didn’t immediately reduce us to “Oh wow! Wow! Listen to that! We must must must have it!“. And so, our pennies are still safely squirelled away in readiness just in case something outstandingly special might happen to come along. Having said that, we did lash out and buy something else that has been on our minds for a long time, and it’s already proving great fun (and very therapeutic too) – all we’ll say at the moment is that it’s a versatile musical instrument, mostly black, and looks well in our blue room. You may find it on some future audio recordings done with our Samplitude Pro X or possibly even video films edited with Video pro X3 – but, then again, who knows?

X is for XBMC… and Xara… the music, video and photo streaming project is rolling along nicely, and we’ve just installed  version 11.0 Beta 3 test release of XBMC (our preferred media centre application) and we’re enjoying watching our catalogued films and TV series streamed from our trusty little server onto the big telly in the lounge. There are still some niggling issues to iron out, but it’s coming along nicely. And, as always, we’re enjoying exercising our creativity not only in music but in music-related design too – album artwork, web stuff, posters, publicity leaflets and all manner of things. Most people have never heard of Xara (a long-established English software company that specialises in graphics software). We’re great fans, and we’ve happily stuck with their products… including Webstyle, X-3D, Xara Pro, Xtreme, Designer Pro… we love the interface, the speed, the flexibility, the features, and (unlike competing industry standard heavweight products) the price doesn’t break the bank.

We resisted the temptation to cram this week’s blog with false x words such as expensive, excruciating, exciting, exemplary, etc etc – that would be cheating, and we don’t cheat – no, nay, never.


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