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Unfair / Funfair

by Simon Bookish

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My Voice 02:46
Perhaps my voice is on the tape as well? Pre-recorded or real-time: could you tell? Perhaps my voice is low down in the mix? Or maybe your mind is playing tricks?
...season two... ...the spires filled with glue... ...high pitched resonances... ...they invested in technology of all kinds... ...they travelled... ...they made karaoke from hell... ...they took their... Clearly, records indicate you and I were born here Ambition died here, so I disappeared Dreadnought goodbyes and silence Your shark eyes It's really no surprise A fantastic piss experiment Only one recourse for merriment I put down my drink Escape into the night A suburban guilt trip You could say that I jumped ship But I didn't jump, I was pushed from it A fantastic piss experiment There's nothing left but the sediment I materialise around the time that day descends But there's nothing to do here Go underground or shop out of town?
Handsome girls in the disco tonight Handsome girls, it's a mind-blowing sight Handsome girls want to work on the door Handsome girls who I just can't ignore Handsome girls in the disco tonight Handsome girls say they might start a fight Handsome girls, but they know I'm too puny Handsome girls, when I quake at their beauty So throw away your make-up, I don't want to disappoint you You know when we wake up, I won't want to disappoint you Handsome girls know I'm all on my own Handsome girls, maybe I'll follow them home Handsome girls find it very exciting Handsome girls, though you might see me hiding Handsome girls, an impenetrable clique Handsome girls give new meaning to 'chic' Handsome girls, so I drop to my knees Handsome girls, can I join you, please? So throw away your make-up, I don't want to disappoint you You know when we wake up, I won't want to disappoint you ...dance with me...
O Guillotine 03:26
Tobias Schmidt, though you'd never admit The jacks became clubs in your time and now Tobias Schmidt, though you're not to blame for it Your Harpsichord strings took the heads of kings O Guillotine Tobias Schmidt, witness to none of this Vengeful, lives were sold: your transaction in gold Tobias Schmidt, prepare the photofit Bow down Africa's slave, bow down Europe's knave O Guillotine
...So heads down Don't look around Cause I'm oblivious to you So fucking serious ...So heads down Don't make a sound Cause I'm oblivious to you So fucking serious To wine bar To romance To psycho To cadaver To body parts To bin bag To watery grave To damp bones To particles To drinking water ...So heads down... I am a teenager An old age pensioner Medieval everyman I am your greatest fan I am a corporation With global aspiration I am a well-known soft drink A pair of branded trainers I am the filthy rich Exploitation bitch I am the squalid poor I am the Hackney whore I am celebrity Face of anonymity The one you can't ignore Waits for you outside your door ...So heads down...
The royal meteorologist's expression is pained The weather looks bad and it's starting to rain Wasting his prayers on a fate already sealed Kneeling in a tent, intent, in a Bosworth field Richard of York gave battle in vain This weatherman, whose charts predict severe precipitation Couldn't say, couldn't say the future of a nation Fearing Richard of York giving battle in vain He pleads with the king in a language untamed: "Oh please insane monarch don't you know what you're doing Get down off your steed a storm is a-brewing Written right here in history on pages unturned Give the king half an hour he'll be food for the worms" Richard of York gave battle in vain But the nonchalant king, with his transparent skin Views the battlefield and yawns as a grey day dawns In his veins a juice flows of a curious colour Not blood but white rose hence the unearthly pallor The sky rains down daggers cutting mud from the loam Richard's whole army washed away by the storm Crying "Spur your proud horses", the Tudors upon him But the sun, not the storm, tears him limb from pale limb Chisels a prism where once was an eye Splits open his chest as he lays down to die The hills and the standards are strangely afire As he bleeds seven hues into England's grey sky Richard of York gave battle in vain
Mythical ostriches From... to... we built the London bunker Terrified, the threat of unidentified genocide Mysterious news from foreign lands We took the matter into our own hands Stockpiling, agonising From... to... we built the London bunker Dressed to oppress ourselves, we won't forget to loot the ghetto Pause only to spit in a stranger's face The one who brought the terror to this place Shivering underground From... to... we built the London bunker Paranoid, we'd fled down drains, at pains to keep "the others" at bay Only now we realise the danger's here in the faces of our peers ...We built the London bunker...
Topography 03:45
I can't see the sea from the centre of the city Just the tops of the trees and they're not so pretty I can't see the mountains on the distant horizon The lye of the land, the only lie I rely on Topography, a science I am needing Topography, just to end this feeling Topography, in the books I'm reading Then I run through the town past the concrete and steel Should I pull it all down? To see what I can reveal I know inside these four walls I have to stifle emotion But you'll see when it falls: over rubble a view, out to the ocean
If you're feeling sick and tired After all the pills you took Just reach up to the top shelf For the new self-help book Have a browse and you will find That the answer lies within these pages Called 'Elektra Therapy' Subtitled 'Family crises through the ages' Introducing Elektra Therapy Come on, Elektra, Elektra complex, Greek style It was written 405 BC Somewhere near the Parthenon Now pressed again for present day Available on Amazon Just trust me on it's pedigree Prevents adultery to some degree Based on ancient principles Now sold to you in multiples


The first Simon Bookish album, comprising a series of bilious, electronic agitprop sketches, ranging from the dystopian musique concréte of 'London Bunker', to the kaleidoscopic synth pop of 'Richard of York', the eerie calm of 'Topography' and the histrionic disco of 'Handsome Girls'.

Bizarre and full of black humour, the songs owe something to the likes of Coil, DAF, Scott Walker circa 'Tilt', the smashed remains of the Electroclash scene, and the experimental electronica emerging from London clubs in the mid-2000s.

"...'Unfair / Funfair' is aptly named, for this album is a scintillating epileptic fit on a roller-coaster, with a ghost train, some black magic roundabouts, and a disturbing hall of mirrors thrown in for good measure. Yet because of Bookish's unique voice and technical ability, it holds together perfectly, making the ride all the more intense..."—Luke Turner, Playlouder Magazine (2006)

"After some scene-stealing remixes for Grizzly Bear and Franz Ferdinand, my expectations were high, but Bookish brings it. Following a Delia Derbyshire-esque sci fi synth bloopfest, we are plunged onto Bosworth Field... Simon Bookish brings more than a pinch of Adam Ant's camp anachronism to bear on his sparkling synth-pop, with winning results. The dragonslaying prog bonus round of harmony vocals, angelic choirs and percolating keys in the song's second half tips his hand..."—Drew Daniel, Pitchfork (2006)


released March 1, 2006

written, performed and produced by Leo Chadburn
additional recordings and mix by Chris Branch and Tom Haines
spoken word by Gemma Saunders
artwork by Yehrin Tong
photography by Matt Irwin


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Leo Chadburn / Simon Bookish London, UK

Leo Chadburn (London, UK) AKA Simon Bookish is a composer of experimental and 'avant-pop' music, vocalist and writer. His unpredictable work includes music for classical ensembles, dramatic solo performances that merge his voice with electronic music, and music for film and installation art. It has been broadcast on BBC Radio 1, 3 and 6 Music, Resonance FM and internationally. ... more

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