The Purple Pinup Guru Platform

When purple things are pulsating on your mind, I'm the one whose clock you want to clean. Aiding is Sparky, the Astral Plane Zen Pup Dog from his mountain stronghold on the Northernmost Island of the Happy Ninja Island chain, this blog will also act as a journal to my wacky antics at an entertainment company and the progress of my self published comic book, The Deposit Man which only appears when I damn well feel like it. Real Soon Now.

Friday, August 01, 2003


Today is the big relocation for me to a bigger workplace. Since noon, movers have put in a new desk for me and I'm pulsing to write this entry even as I am unpacking. I've got a space to put in a nameplate in the wall (some kind of magnet thing -a -majig) and I already etched in the words: welcome to the Cary Coatney Clubhouse - probably won't be long until my boss, KATHY THE GREAT will politely ask me to take it down. When I get in early Monday morning, I will start hammering or tacking up all my movie and comic book posters on the wall and I'll probably be scolded for that as well. I've also got my sights set on stealing a shelving unit from the back storage area and using it to erect giant penis and vagina statues from Verotik Comics or something in that obscene nature. What's a little work without raising a little hell now and then?

Geezus Christ, why do people think I'm a expert on computers? What fucking aura impression do I radiate that I'm some kind of specialist in the computer programming field ? Everyone in my department calls on me for assistance because either they're too old to fuck around with the machines or can't hear anything on their CD drives. And I'm afraid to tell them that I know exactly jack shit just as much as the next guy- but somehow I prevail through trail and error and get the crap running for them. That was vent paragraph # 1 by the way.

Not much planned for the weekend except for scoping out the new Daredevil DVD and reading a shitload of comics that I'm backed up on. Becky's husband's parents are staying over from England and I gotta admit I do enjoy their company. I haven't seen his little brother in years. Man, has he grown. Last time I saw him, he was just starting to attend university in London. Now he's 22 and after I got off the busstop after a grueling writing session a few nights ago- he was crossing the same street at Ventura coming towards me. He wanted to know where all the good bars were in Sherman Oaks- I said 'dude, you gotta go to West Hollywood for that kind of scene' and already he was bored and immediately wanted to fly back to London. But his parents want to take him up to San Francisco and to Monterey and I think they would have left by now- but they'll be back at my place before flying out on the 13th. Shit, I can't believe it's August already.

Another essay has been notched on my belt- the essay on billboards and bus placards went out via e-mail to Maggie Thompson early this morning. I want to print out a hardcopy of it but due to the move, the printer hasn't been connected to my modem yet. So I'm holding off sending in the pix until Monday morning.

Saturday I hope to have a meeting with Oliver to pick up some of Larry's original artwork for the Deposit Man so he can strip down the lettering and replace it with some Comickraft fonts. Not too early I hope, because I want to watch cartoons.



Thursday, July 31, 2003


Well, tonight will be the night when I will do my major touchups to my first submitted article in a little over five years- then zoom! off to Maggie Thompson (editor of the Comics Buyer's Guide) 's e-mail box it goes. Then over the weekend I will print up a hardcopy and send off the photographs I've been shooting for the past six months! My daily weekday routine for the past few weeks has been this: Wake up at quarter after 6 in the morning. Shower, shave, feed the cat, and try to catch the new Rapid line bus out to Van Nuys which I'm lucky to catch at least once or twice a week because I'm too busy pissing around loading up my knapsack with CDs and comics I'm going to read throughout the day. And when I do fail to catch that bus- I'll have to take a less quality bus that are usually operated by driver who likes to pull over to take a nap or drivers with weak bladders who have to stop at every goddamn Starbucks all along Ventura Blvd just to relieve themselves. It's a good thing I try to get in to work at least thirty to forty-five minutes early now that I'm perm. When I was contracting, I had a problem of getting in on time because of these incompetent
overpaid low esteem MTA drivers who feel they can do whatever the fuck they feel like.

From 8:30 AM to usually 5 PM, I'm mostly on the job- sometimes shit will come in late around 4:30 when it's supposed to come in at 3- so I'll probably spend an extra hour to get it all posted. Then one of my co-workers will give me a ride to the main lot (I don't work at the fortress that is associated with my place of employment- I have to hold court at a annex building two to three miles up the road close to the Burbank Airport) and from there, I will walk the entire length of Toluca Lake to my 'secret writing location' where I concoct articles and ideas for stories, or take over Larry Nadolsky's artwork for the Deposit Man where I correct the misspellings in all his word balloons. Or some nights, I just go to jerk around on the net if I'm not in a working mood.

Once I've spent two to three hours there, I will walk to my busstop (I'm naturally handicapped in California these days, can you tell?- that's what happens when you don't own a car in LA- you walk and are therefore labeled as a 'loser' due to my political viewpoint in not supporting Bush and Cheney's war by not being dependent on their middle eastern brewed black tea) and take the bus home to Sherman Oaks- and once I'm there sometimes I will spend an hour going over some old scripts stored on an old matrix dot computer that hopefully will see the light in comic book form. Four down and six to go. Or if it's too hot, I'll work out some cramp by jamming on one of my synthesizers.

Then I sit down to read or if's it really too hot, I'll go and do a few laps in the pool in my backyard. Risky, I know since there's no one to supervise me at that time of day. But what I'm really whizzing over now- reading material ( that was not intended as bathroom humor by the way) wise is that I took out my entire collection of the old mid-eighties series of the Question written by Denny O'Neil and drawn by Denys Cowan and Rick Mayger ( I usually bump into Denys a few times since I live across the street from my company's animation division and he happens to be the executive producer on Static Shock. I'm proud that this show gets plenty of award noms) and have been re-reading a issue a night- sort of aids me in clearing the doldrums out of my system. It was a comic book back in the day that was not afraid in taking risks with both a political and philosophic slant - each issue id sort of like sitting down and getting a lession in zen mediation, but with lots of violent horseplay thrown it for good measure. You can't walk away from an issue and not get something euphoric out of it. I miss the saga of tee vee reporter Vic Sage and his schizophrenic twin alter-ego, The Question of whom he became by simply applying a little dab of a blank face mask and a squirt of gas to change the color of his hair and clothes and then went around and kicked ass. The conflicts that most plagued the Question were simply this: corruption. Corruption is prevalent throughout the series- either it be through the politicians or the police themselves. The Question's sole purpose in life is to simply to make his environment breathable again. An idea has come to me to revive this character (and I got it just by reading the old letter columns Remember the good old days when comic books had fan letters? Sadly those lamented days are now long gone). And it would be just 'tits' if I could talk to Denys in getting involved.

But, bugfuck, I can dream, can't I ?



Wednesday, July 30, 2003

Welcome to another edition of HALFASS!!

My love knows no bounds for all the music projects that Steven Wilson is involved either be his mainstay band Porcupine Tree or his ode to all things David Lynch or avant-garde through No-Man, or OSI nothing, not even wild horses with big schlongs can keep me away. But there are days when I fucking procrastinate and I fucking lose out - like not buying a ticket to tonight's double bill of OPETH (a death metal band that Steven Wilson produces and occasionally contributes keyboards to) and Porcupine Tree. I had forgotten that a lot of heavy metal bangers follow OPETH and the show sold out sometime last week. So I fucked up, but I'm probably better off anyway- since I have to get up at 6 in the morning anyway and it is in the middle of a workweek- PT wouldn't have probably hit the stage until midnight. If I was 5 years younger I probably wouldn't give a shit- but now with the approach towards middle age- concerts don't grab me the way they used to. So in honor, of PT's much herald return to the Los Angeles area- I'm representing my Porcupine Tree review that originally got posted on the Dutch Progressive Rock Page, which in turn, Steven Wilson or Mark Bredius probably snatched off and placed it on the band's website without any royalities paid to me of course. It's just a shit day today. The Bob Hope Funeral motorcade held up traffic today in Toluca Lake on the way to work- my interview with that lady who works for Viacom Outdoor Media was a no-go and....whatever else- I don't care to go on.. so enjoy my awkward account of my first Porcupine Tree gig from last year.


Porcupine Tree, 26th November 2002
The Knitting Factory, Hollywood, CA, USA
By Cary Coatney



I've been itching to see these guys for a quite some time.
The last two times Porcupine Tree were in Los Angeles, I was too busy or out of town on comic book industry related business. I'm glad to see that this time our schedules were able to coincide with each other- because from this day forward I vow never to miss any of their shows ever again. You have my solemn word to anyone reading this.

My deep dark love affair with this band began with how one would call "a chance encounter" back in 1996 during one of the first few ever Los Angeles Progfests. Some folks from Ark 21 records were there to pass out sampler cassettes of their upcoming releases. One side had this early Police demo recording and the other side had a Porcupine Tree song called Waiting Part One and Part Two. I remember that also during this show, I developed mutual trysts with the Flower Kings, Spock's Beard, and Arena, thereby forcing my hand and a lot of departed cash towards their CDs. I took home a lot of CDs and tapes with me that night and I only managed to find time to listen to them only once. A lot of tapes I received were mostly from bands handing out demos in a hopeful gamble that they would return to their native country with a major American record deal- so it could have been that this half Porcupine Tree sampler tape got lost in the shuffle or was played in my tapedeck when I was only paying half attention or served as background music while I was busy writing other comic book related nonsense.

Later that same year, I vaguely remember scouring the ARK 21 offices which is only a few blocks from my house. I was there applying for a job (which I didn't get) and as I was leaving, the receptionist gave me a promo copy of the Signify album either because she thought I was cute or felt sorry that I didn't get the gig. Hands down, it was probably the latter. But for some odd reason, I put that demo in with the rest of the mountain pile of freebies I managed to accumulate. Some of those freebies still lie dormant in their shrinkwrap till this very day.

An old friend of mine whose subjugated mind I quickly corrupted with mid-eighties proggy sounds of Marillion and IQ finally got one over on me while we were driving around one hot August day in the San Fernando Valley. He was trying to get me to listen to Radiohead on his car stereo. I've been trying to avoid Radiohead for the obvious fact that they were too well known and probably too chic with the college drinking culture of whom I've long ago severed ties with (a mistake that I would later on rectify with the release of Kid A). As we were cruising, I asked my buddy if this was Radiohead he was playing. He flashed back this baffling look of despair as if I was dropkicked from the glass planet of Marbleheadworld and scoffed at me with this exasperated exclamation of; 'what, are you freaking nuts? This is Porcupine Tree. I thought you knew everything about english Prog bands?' I gave him the same look back, but as we were comparing wrinkled foreheaded stares (as tough guys weened on 52 episodes of The Sopranos testosterone often do), I found myself liking- no, let me reiterate that; not liking,- but instantly falling in love with whatever I was hearing: a staccato stabbing piano motif later accompanied by a searing guitar wail- the beginnings of a nominal psychodelic rock love affair entitled Piano Lessons. To this day that song still epitomizes the ultimate rock lyric ever devised by man, which goes like this: I come in value packs of ten/ In five varities. I didn't understand what the tongue in cheek reference meant, but I did know it was an instant classic in my collection of the best of in progressive rock lyrical cliches.

Upon further listening, I finally broke the silence and said to my friend, 'dude, you gotta burn me a copy of this.' The deal was worked out to if only I was held hostage to listen to Radiohead's OK Computer - which wasn't as bad as I imagined it to be, but I couldn't get that Piano Lessons track out of my head. I instantly wanted to drive myself daft with immediate repeat listenings. We hung out at his pad and as he was burning a copy of Stupid Dream, he suggested that he also burn a copy of Signify for me- because in his opinion it was much more a darker album and more up my alley. He pulled out his copy of the CD and my jaw literally dropped. Upon seeing the cover, I suddenly realized that I had forgotten that I had one of their albums in my possession all this time- simply passing them off as some banal three chord playing pop band.

To make up for lost time, it was back to back listenings of both Signify and Stupid Dream for what felt like eons, that I became a witless Steven Wilson fanatic, eagerly devouring each new release that came out starting with Lightbulb Sun, Recordings, the two disc compilation, Stars Die, all the way to their new major label release, In Absentia, filled in with a few back catalogue titles thrown in during gaps of those releases. Another surprise I found in my possession was Fish's Sunsets on Empire; an album made in collaboration with Steve Wilson. All this time and I never fully made the connection.

So it is with great pleasure to share with most of the European readers of this site, the final show of their American stop over. The tour that was offically declared by Steve on stage as "the proper" In Absentia tour.

This also marked my first visit to the Knitting Factory venue and I hope that I do get around to catching another show here. Tucked away in a newly built but already decrepit decaying and vacated strip mall along Hollywood Blvd and just beneath a megaplex cinema house there within lies two separate stages - you have to walk around a aluminium sided hallway and through the main bar in order to get to your designated stage area. Along the corridor of the hallway, there is a cyber cafe where one can stop and check for e-mails.

Once settled and a generous amount of Amstel Light later, everyone politely applauded LA local stick player Greg Howard through a half hour set consisting of Beatles and Bob Dylan covers. Then the house lights dimmed down and a long droning bass sound emitted from the house sound system. A projection of some negative film image stablized itself at the rear of the stage. At first, I couldn't make out the image, but I would soon find out later when the band walked on stage- but, what the hell, guessing games are too far and between to pass up. Was the image a carbon dated mutated preschooler Thanksgiving turkey handprint, a rejected Rorschach test ink blot, or a horrid looking photostated facsimile of Tony Blair's pockmarked puss? I thought I was on to something there on that last one, but the droning went on, and on, and on, and my mind eventually wandered on to other things. I evasdropped on some people in the crowd talking about their trip to a Marillion weekend convention and I tried to drill as much information as I could from them, even as that incessant long drone increased in volume. Then before anyone knew it, the band emerged on stage with the rabid sneak attack of Blackest Eyes. The image that kept my mind occupied for at least a quarter of an hour turned out to be a double side to side negative enlargement of the In Absentia album cover.

The wait was finally over and my curiosity of how this band would look and sound was completely sated.

The band launched into several cuts from the new album, seven to be exact; and with John Wesley providing the back up vocals and guitar, his side man assistance was precisely in sync with the studio recording as evident when the opening number segued into The Sound of Muzak. After that was over, the grand master of ceremonies, Steven Wilson said some hellos and briefed us on what to expect for the rest of the evening. Last time they were here, they merely previewed a couple of tracks from the In Absentia album. Now with the album finally released, Steven assured us that a lot of it would be played tonight. Without further ado, keyboard player Richard Barbieri (looking like a ragged Haight Ashbury acid dropping guru professor championing his way through a massive take no prisoners barfight while stopping on his way to bribe Austin Powers' costume department into renting a London sixties Mod style jacket and spectacles)navigated his way through the gothic choral progression of Gravity Eyelids. Another glorious moment resulted in this number sounding slightly different from the album version. Chalk it up to the sound engineer whose name escapes me, but Steve thanked him for the mix later on in the show.

Steven Wilson is surely not what I expected. With straight shoulder length reddish hair constantly flopping over his Lennon inspired sunglasses and garbed in a all black outfit, I got the impression that he more resembled a Jerry Cornell progeny hell bent on a technological nervous breakdown- or a wild illegitimate amalgamated offspring forged between Todd Rundgren and Robert Fripp. Steven focuses himself in delivering well thought out guitar passages imbued with foot pedaled effects. Lots of effects. But unlike Fripp, who bolts from the stage like a wounded deer every time someone pulls out a Kodak instantmatic flash camera (I don't know, maybe the reason why Fripp is so paranoid with people taking his picture on stage is because he lost stock in Eastman/Kodak?), Wilson puts aside his electronic babbled idiosyncrasies long enough to display a interactive fun side. After a lengthy serving of Stupid Dream's Even Less and A Slave Called Shiver it's revealed that Steve does exhibit a working knowledge of the comic book and film entertainment industry. Something we both seem to have in common.

Or so I thought.

Steve asked those in attendance if anyone had the chance to see the television show, Birds of Prey. For those not in the know about American TV shows, Birds of Prey is based on the crime fighting exploits of a wheelchair bound Batgirl, a teen aged Black Canary, and a super powered young woman named the Huntress who in contrary to belief is supposed to be the love child of both Batman and Catwoman. Go figure- the show's already on the cancellation block, but a instrumental track from the new album, entitled Wedding Nails surfaced on the second episode's final act. Since the show is made by Warner Bros, it's a no-brainer as to why it was selected since they also happens to own the band's new label. Steve described the feeling for the song he wrote to be selected for a television show as being "surreal" since he penned it in mind as 'a soundtrack to a confrontation between Catwoman and Aquaman.'

My immediate gut reaction?

What the f#@k?

Now not to sound too indignant, but I think perhaps Steve should have done his research before making that blanket holed statement. I've been a avid comic book reader for close to thirty-five years and a writer in the genre for nearly ten, and I can attest to the fact that Aquaman and Catwomen never came within a three thousand mile radius of each other. First of all, cats abhor the very concept of water and since Aquaman hails from the waterlogged city of Atlantis, he can't remain on the surface for very long without his body needing to replenished by his natural habitat. So there would have been no plausible way on Arthur Treacher's gravestone that Catwoman and Aquaman could have gotten together and taken in a flick or a quick bite at a neighboring Fish & Chips shoppe.

With that being said, the song thundered along nicely and immediately after we were treated to a couple of numbers off the Lightbulb Sun album most notably, Last Chance to Evacuate Planet Earth Before it is Recycled and the CSN & Y inspired Shesmovedon. After getting those numbers squared away, Steve again took the mic and volunteered the audience to contribute to what they felt was the most offensive shirt worn in the club tonight. A few voted for either A Flock of Seagulls or Ron Jeremy (fellow gargantuan male porn star/director and regularly seen about town celebrity, although thank goodness he wasn't at this venue tonight), but in the end Steve declared one of his guitar technicans to be the most horrendous offender as he walked briefly onstage with a Hawaiian shirt that had every member of Kiss silkscreened on it. This amusing bit of banter provided the set up for the Gunnar stylings of Colin Edwin whose fretless bass reverberated the recognizable rhythmic pitter patterings of Hatesong.

The main set was heading for its' inevitable conclusion with more songs selected from the new album. Heartattack in A Layby clinched the deal in making John Wesley a permanent sideman. His duo vocal duties interspersed with Wilson's made me take special notice of my least favorite track off the new album and made it into a highlight of the entire set. I also heard this echoed amongst those on the Yes message boards that this was indeed the song that got them the most praise when opening for them. Then it was on to the hyper strobe laser light and wacky slideshow emporium treatment for both the Nine Inch Nails lifted The Creator Has A Mastertape and the heavy metal guitar garnishment of Strip The Soul that had new drummer Gavin Harrison pounding the skins away like a seasoned pro. I wish I was around to make comparsions to Chris Maitland, but being this was my first exposure to a Porcupine Tree concert, I'm probably better off confident saying that I wouldn't have noticed the difference anyway.

I was out for a cigarette break while the band came back on stage and performed the only number off the Signify album, Waiting. I think I entered just as Steve plucked away at the final two guitar notes and then the band immaculately switched to my favorite instrumental from the Stupid Dream album, Tinto Brass and that was it.

I didn't wait around for after the show to say thanks to the band or to get any albums autographed as I had to get up early for work the next morning. I simply purchased a t-shirt and picked up a few free stickers (Darn, I missed out on free sampler CDs.).

And so there you have it, my first Porcupine Tree concert. I hope those of you out there had fun reliving this experience with me and please make sure to pick up the new album, In Absentia next month. Although you lucky sods get an extra bonus disc, we yanks got to hear the album first.

Blackest Eyes
The Sound of Muzak
Gravity Eyelids
Even Less
A Slave Called Shiver
Wedding Nails
Last Chance To Evacuate Planet Earth Before It Is Recycled
Heartattack in A Layby
The Creator Has A Mastertape
Strip the Soul

Tinto Brass


Tuesday, July 29, 2003


Starting to feel the crunch of the Comic Con aftermath. Financially, I mean. This week is dedicated to paying off the bills I set aside or put off so I could look like I could actually afford it when in all actuality, I really couldn't.

Credit Card bills. Storage bills. Union dues. Columbia Tape Club overdue payments. Rent. Thought I had it all figured out - until someone reminded me from the store that I have a 'silent' partnership in- that all a whole bunch of shit that I ordered four months ago all came in a single week. Books like Jack Kirby's Jimmy Olson collection, The Challengers of the Unknown Archives, Harlan Ellison's Vic And Blood, Fables' Animal Farm collection- a whole plethora of trade paperbacks totaling $150.00 has to be cleared out this week because I didn't put down a deposit on it otherwise, it gets picked clean by the vultures who hibernate the store's corridors.

What I really wanted to do was start paying some of my people off for work on the new Deposit Man this week.

I have to arrange a meeting with this young impressionable penciller/painter who is wwilling to paint my covers. I keep running into him by chance - last Friday it was a Carl's Jr that was a few doors down from Earth 2. I collected his new number and e-mail address so I should meet with him in a week to discuss how I want the cover to look like and I can't come to this meeting unless I have some cash up front to show him I mean business.

Tonight and tomorrow, I should be in the final stretch of polishing off this outdoor marketing essay. I'm actually excited in going to my secret location and inserting the qoutes I've gotten either through e-mails or interviews over the weekend. I have to wake up real early to make a phone call to England and talk to a representive from Viacom Outdoor Media (8 hours time difference) about how they decorate all those double decker buses in London with movie ads. What are they made of and how can people see through them while the bus is in motion?

I'm sure the answers will startle me- but not fascinate others.

Well, I'll be taking a stroll though Toucla Lake ( why are local broadcasters referring to it as Lake Toucla? ) to see the somberness of the town due to the reaction of Bob Hope's passing. If I pass by his house, I'll pause to pay my respects.



Monday, July 28, 2003


Almost forgot to blog today as I'm busy packing to move to a new office space at the end of the week.

I knew it was going to be a shitty day when I woke up to the news of the passing of Bob Hope ( I was dismayed when I logged on to Yahoo! this morning and there was the link to click: Bob Hope Dead at 100. I thought that was fucking tacky. Usually when I hear the word dead it symbolizes that either you got a). murdered by a gangbanger, b). seriously miamed beyond any hope of recognition in a car accident, or c). you got turned to a toasted graham cracker smore in a 102 story skyscraper- but you when die in your sleep at 2 AM, it should be considered as just 'pissed away' in the summer wind. I bet right now everywhere from Burbank NBC studios up the road to Riverside Drive in Toluca Lake is just simply desavasted by this not so shocking news.I know it's been in the cards, ladies and gent- heck, bets have been waged on the Howard Stern Show for years, but it's going to hurt to wake up in the morning knowing that there will be a world that's going to exist without a Bob Hope in it.

I want to check out the scene for myself after I get off work but tonight I'm attending my very first union meeting, so I probably get to see flags waved at half mast tomorrow when I stroll through his home town in Toluca Lake on my way over to my writing sanctum santorium at night.

This has certainly been a eventful weekend for me. I think I landed my cover artist- just by a chance meeting in a local Carl's Jr. Interviewed some of the store staff at Earth 2 for my outdoor media article I'm doing for Comic's Buyers' Guide while Flash and Hawkman (etc) writer was doing a signing. Saw the new Lara Croft movie- bit of a letdown. Finished a draft on a Batman story proposal and came to work with some further positve e-mail feedback from the Viacom field office in London concerning my CBG article. Jeez, wait until Maggie gets these photos of double decker buses all garnished in Spider-Man and Hulk images.