Global compilation aids Queensland flood victims

Surge & Subside fundraising album

Musicians from around the world have banded together to produce a massive compilation of music, with all proceeds going to the Queensland flood appeal. Called Surge & Subside, the album features musicians with an electronic and industrial bent, including Android Lust, Assemblage 23, Angelspit, Collide and Psyche. More than 40 tracks for the ridiculously reasonable price of $20 for the double cd (including shipping) or $10 for the download. It’s another case of a community rallying to aid their own, and more besides, in a time of strife. Great stuff.

Spare some change for a flooded muso?

My mates at synth-driven band Tycho Brahe have been washed out of their Brisbane home by the recent floods — luckily, they were able to get most of their gear — and their kids! — out before the flood water inundated their two-storey house — both storeys. Most, but not all, and the clean-up is costing a mint, not to mention the dislocation of renting and having your possessions, right down to your chooks, spread across spare storage space across the city. Tycho supremo Ken shows the studio damage in this blog post and says the easiest way to lend a hand is to pick up some merch from CDBaby. These guys aren’t just great musos, they’re great people: snaffle a cd or a download if you can. Your ears, and the band, will be grateful.

Update: Ken and George of Tycho were in the Brisbane Courier-Mail talking about the flood impact; it’s a brief piece, but you get the picture.

100 Stories for Queensland

The list of authors appearing in 100 Stories for Queensland has been announced and it’s a great looking list drawing writers from all over the place. The anthology is to raise money for Queensland flood victims.

The book is due out on March 8.

I’m particularly interested in seeing what Alan Baxter has contributed, given the antho was looking for uplifting yarns *grin*

Yasi’s tail hits Melbourne

More than four inches of rain overnight (much more in places), hail, blackouts … Yasi’s long tail lashes Victoria causing major disruption and damaging property across Melbourne. Spare a thought for those poor buggers in the regions who’ve already been flooded this year, now copping another soaking and wondering if the river’s coming up to meet them yet again.

Up north, the clean up is beginning while the search for a missing couple continues. These before-and-after images give some idea of the destruction.

Media Diary goes into PR mode

Following up yesterday’s woefully presented remark about the effect of cyclone Yasi on Queensland, the editor of The Australian’s Media Diary has updated the offensive post headlined, dismissively and offensively methinks, Much Ado.

What a shame that the full context for posting the two pars of reportage wasn’t posted in the first place — it might have helped reduce the outrage to a mere WTF?

If this was the best summary quote that the editor could find to give a picture of what was happening — bearing in mind the effects of the cyclone were still being felt at the landing point at that time (in fact, storm and flooding flow-on will continue for days) — I can’t help but think something was amiss. To pass the caller’s comment on without the context now supplied (a “good news” story from somewhere in north Queensland), and with what comes across as a patronising tone (“palm trees have of course lost fronds”): why? I guess those having their roofs torn off were otherwise engaged at the time and couldn’t make it to the phone to call Sydney talkback.

I’m still not sure why this item even made it onto a blog dedicated to the comings, goings, pratfalls and indiscretions of the media.

So what we’ve got is:

Headline: FAIL

Content: FAIL

Presentation: FAIL

Timing: FAIL

The update isn’t much better. A bunch of tweets showing that, really, the editor really did give a damn (just not on the blog), the unconvincing defence of the decision to post those two pars, and then a return salvo at the irate but telling blog at Grog’s Gamut taking the original post to task.

Nice try, Much Ado, but something is rotten.

Such vileness at The Australian

It’s not unusual for me to be embarrassed to be associated with News Ltd, but now, I’m actually ashamed. This piece of gutter commentary, no doubt aimed to garner a few of those precious internet hits that consume News’s online presence, simply amazes me. Lives torn apart, farms in ruins, infrastructure on its knees, the storm not even over yet, and this creature is lamenting the absence of what? Death? Corpses?

This could be our Katrina

Cyclone Yasi is closing in on north Queensland. It’s category 5, of a size and packing a punch that puts it on level pegging with hurricane Katrina, the monster storm that tore New Orleans apart in 2005.

Five years ago, Innisfail suffered the brunt of cyclone Larry. Three quarters of the state is still recovering from massive flooding. Now this.

Spare a thought for Queensland, hunkered down with Yasi expected to hit the coast in just five hours. Yasi’s coming in on a full tide — huge storm tides are predicted, just to add to the woe.

How big is Yasi? Handy reference maps.

The Bureau of Meterology radar shows how the rainfall is following Yasi’s cyclonic motion.


The ABC’s website seems to be among the better ones of posting up-to-date warnings without sucking up too much bandwidth. The network’s 24-hour news channel is feeding in reports from all over the far north.

I’ve been watching the rain radar, tracking the storm’s approach, dumbstruck by the size and the inexorable nature of the disaster now unfolding. It doesn’t give an impression of the wind and the surge and the godawful racket that wind is going to make, for hours and hours while the storm works its way inland.

Good luck and godspeed up there.


Addendum: I just heard that Yasi is likely to reach Mt Isa on Friday as a category 1 cyclone. The town’s about 900km from Townsville on the east coast. I’m sorry, but WTF?