We’re two months in, here in the UK. 

For those of us with pre-existing mental health issues, Rona has laid an extra layer of FUD on us. Reach out. In my region (the Midlands), try TRENT PTS for online counselling. Don’t feel you’re going on or that people are bored of hearing about your mental health, don’t suffer needlessly. 

For those of you who were previously okay in terms of mental issues, your current suffering is valid, is important, don’t feel like you can’t share it or also reach out. You may never have done this before, you may be worry about being stigmatised. Please don’t – if you need help, please try and get some. 

All around me, my friends are in pain and feel lonely. I phone / Zoom them but that can only do so much. We’re a species that should be sitting around, snacking on berries and grooming each other. The way you punish a human is to put them in solitary. 

Things are frayed, I’ve gone a bit asocial and had to apologise for being stilted and weird in convos. And my normal personality is a bloke who goes alone on stage with an acoustic guitar and invites 200 strangers to listen to him sing for forty minutes. I am not shy normally. So, if I’m feeling the effects, I can only imagine what it must be like for the actual shy people out there. I’m sending you hugs in particular. 

Be kind to people. Cut them some slack cos we’re all going doolally. Send your friends a card or text or some chocs or whatever. Let people know you love them. Give them a virtual boop on the nose. x

Auf Wiedersehen, Florian


Without Kraftwerk, we wouldn’t have music as we know it now. Sounds like hyperbole but they were that influential. Everyone from Bowie to Bambaataa, post-punk to hip hop, right up to this week’s chart pop. All music now is electronic music, it’s simply a question of to what degree.

I was lucky enough to see them live in Nottingham three years ago and it was one of the most moving gigs I’ve seen in my entire life. I won’t repeat what I said in my review of that gig – what could I add?

How do you sum up a band that has been an inspiration to you in every way, not just musically but philosophically, aesthetically… bloody everything.

Kraftwerk have had various lineups but I can’t really think of them as being Kraftwerk without Florian. I do hope they carry on but I think Florian’s sense of humour, his playfulness and Death-Valley-dry quips will be missed.

Auf Wiedersehen, Florian. Thank you for changing the world. <3

I Miss My Dad

Four years ago, my Dad died.

Last night, I dreamt about him. The dreams were calm, it was like he hadn’t died and he was asking how I was while he was reading a paper and smoking his pipe. God, I used to love watching the whole rigmarole of him patiently cleaning, filling and then smoking his pipe. When I was little, I’d always nick his pipe-cleaning penknife and marvel at the assort of prongs and teeny scrapers.

I told him about the girl I’m in love with and showed him pictures. His comments were perfectly him: “Well, she’s very pretty! If she has a brain, too, she may be good for you. Be careful you don’t lose her!”

I’ll try not to, Dad. I’ll try.

When I woke up, I thought, ‘oh, I should give him a ring, have a chat!’ And than I remembered I couldn’t. It was that liminal moment between dream and reality where everything slumps back down on your shoulders and a small storm of despair rises and falls in the space of a second.

So I had a cry and then got on with the morning; the routine of showering, shaving and then trying to remember the good, happy times with him.

He really was the best Dad ever.