A Good Read A Good Listen and a Good Drink, Robert Maisey, Terminal Gods

It’s a simple yet sublime pleasure, and just thinking about it can make you feel a little calmer, a little more content. Imagine: You bring out one of the good rocks glasses (or your favorite mug or a special occasion tea cup) and pour a couple fingers of amber liquid (or something dark and strong or just some whole milk). You drop the needle on the jazz platter (or pull up a blues album on your mp3 player or dig out that mixtape from college). Ensconcing yourself in the coziest seat in the house, you crack the spine on a classic (or find your place in that sci-fi paperback or pull up a biography on your e-book reader). And then, you go away for a while. Ah, bliss.

In this series, some of NTSIB’s friends share beloved albums, books and drinks to recommend or inspire.


Terminal Gods are from London, and listening to their music is much like settling into a comfortable spot in my favorite dive bar. It’s loud, a little grimy, but at the same time, instantly comforting and familiar. It takes the weight of the world off your shoulders.

And for me, at least, it contains the echo of nights spent on the bus, straggling home from the club in ridiculous outfits with nonsense drawn on my face. It was often cold and awkward, but I was warmed by dancing with my people and I didn’t care. Listening to them I want to go out and get on the dance floor again, to stomp and swirl and sway, to get caught in the undertow of tulle and shiny boots. And then have a cheese toastie and some Irn Bru on the way home.

Anyway, this is Cold Life, their latest single, due to be turned loose upon the world this coming Monday, July 14. If you like it, drop by their Soundcloud and listen to the rest of their tunes. They’ll also be playing, with Dressmaker, in Glasgow (7/16, 13th Note), Edinburgh (7/17, Bannerman’s Gate), Leeds (7/18, Wharf Chambers), Wolverhampton (7/19, The Gifford Arms), and London (7/25, Buffalo Bar).

Terminal Gods - Cold Life (Official Music Video)

And now, I turn the floor over to Robert Maisey, lead guitar and drum machine programmer, who has graciously agreed to join us today to talk about one of his favorite books, records and drinks.


Robert Maisey, Terminal Gods

Robert Maisey, Terminal Gods

“It had better not be some lame fantasy book” – Robert Cowlin: Vocals, Terminal Gods.

A GOOD READ

You remember how Rob Fleming spends half of High Fidelity fretting about his top five albums/songs/artists of all time? Picking any one book or album (or even drink!) precludes a glorious host of other equally worthy candidates from taking the stage. Thus, in order to answer the question without tearing my own hair out, I’m going to look to the synopsis:

“…a simple yet sublime pleasure, and just thinking about it can make you feel a little calmer”.

What would I read when I really needed to take a time out? One reads a book for a lot of reasons: escapism (I’ve just embarked on my second time round with the A Song Of Ice And Fire saga), cultural reference (I recently finished Burrough’s Junkie, mainly to catch up with half a century of cultural reference points, although it was also a cracking read) or to get in touch with themselves (I reread the aforementioned High Fidelity every time I make a hash of my romantic life). But, if I were to pick one book that I can (and have) read cover to cover over and over again, it would be the marvelous The Day Of The Triffids by John Wyndham.

Please, please, please don’t be fooled by the many terrible film and television adaptations of this book. They’re all tripe. The book is full of character, intelligence and classic British charm that just isn’t conveyed in any of the ridiculous “creature feature” type page to screen translations. One of the reasons I love this book (and the author in general) is the many faceted nature of the story. It’s about man’s arrogance regarding his position at the top of the ecological ladder, it’s about the delicacy of the seemingly iron hard social structures we live by, it’s about the conflict between the feral and the noble in human nature and it’s also a love story. It subtly reflects the atmosphere of the early years of the Cold War, where the unimaginable was suddenly possible. Yet for all that, it retains all the classic readability and charm of authors like H.G. Wells and Sir Arthur Conan Doyle.

In fact, the only thing it isn’t really about is man-eating fucking plantosaurs.

A GOOD LISTEN

Since the synopsis specifies a record you would listen to at the very same time as opening your book, that narrows it down a bit. I’ve got a load of favourite albums I could bang on and on about, but not necessarily as many I’d choose to go with a cosy armchair and a juicy chunk of mid-20th-century apocalyptic science fiction. Ordinarily, my go-to inner peace LP is Songs Of Love And Hate by Leonard Cohen – Nothing reflects upon the dark night of the soul better than this utter masterpiece.

But, for the purposes of this evening’s listening, I’m going to set a different tone. Something otherworldly and distorted, to reflect the nightmarish landscape that Day Of The Triffids invokes. Equally, a record riddled with the seething paranoia of the Cold War world, a record that anticipates the decline and fall of society dreamt up the literature of the age. Also something immersive – a record that blocks out the real world from start to finish – one long coherent body of work. For this, I’d choose Funhouse by The Stooges.

As well as this, The Stooges are an important band for Terminal Gods, representing a musical eye opener for all us. They embody the shared history of all the various Goth, Punk, Garage and Glam records that each band member grew up with. If I was talking on behalf of TG’s music, I’d probably be more likely to reference Raw Power – which has been more heavily mined for inspiration than its predecessors – but when I’m taking a personal time out with my favourite drink, it’s Funhouse all the way.

The Stooges - Fun House (Full Album)

A GOOD DRINK

I saw The Mission for the first time on the Lighting The Candles tour when I was 15 years old. Wayne Hussey chucked his bottle of “wine” into the audience and, as the youngest person in the vicinity, much of it got poured straight down my neck. It turned out the bottle had actually been filled with Vodka and Cranberry. It’s been my favourite drink on a night out ever since.

On the other hand, at home with a book it’s a cup of tea every time. We keep builders tea in the house as standard, but as a treat I sometimes like to buy in a box of posh Twining’s tea – usually Assam. My partner and I drink a lot of green tea as well. Japanese rice infused green tea leaves were a recent success story in that department.

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