the-raincoatsYou already know what reviews do. And you already know what this album is about anyway, Kurt Cobain Palmolive blah blah blah, so instead, here's a short story I wrote about raincoats:

The Raincoats

David Gast was an expert in fabric design, and one festive period, working alone in his basement laboratory late on Christmas Eve, or in the early hours of Christmas morning, he finally managed to synthesise a new sort of fabric that he had been working on for ages, one that could be used in raincoats, one with a level of waterprovity so effective that it would undoubtedly revolutionise the entire raincoat industry and make David Gast a millionaire. You see, most waterproof fabrics have as their general principle of being waterproof the fact that they keep the water out- this is all very fine and good and perfectly effective, in a way, but it has the singular problem of the fact that the actual coat itself still gets wet, so when you get inside you bring the rain into your house, in a sense. But David Gast's new fabric didn't work like that at all- instead it had the property of absorbing the water, and making it dry, and then the newly-dry water would flake off the jacket in the form of a salt. He called the fabric Gastorx, and following this headed upstairs to settle down, to go to sleep and then wake up to a pleasant Christmas at home with his wife.But the raincoat industry is a big business, and word travels fast, even at Christmas. David Gast was sitting by the fire, sipping sherry and eating a mince pie in the shadow of the tree, wearing the new cashmere jumper that his wife had bought him as his present when there came a knock on the door, and standing there in front of him were seven grim, menacing envoys from the seven big raincoat companies- Armitage House, Tracker, Splish-Splosh, MaxiCraft Sports, RaÏn, Llewellyn Clarke, and Michael Shaw. The representative standing in the centre, the tallest, from the biggest raincoat manufacturer of them all, Llewellyn Clarke, greeted him: “Merry Christmas, Mr Gast.”“Merry Christmas to you, too,” David replied. “But who are you, and why are you calling here at Christmas?”The representative from Llewellyn Clarke explained who they all were. The representatives all looked identical except for their differing heights, exactly corresponding to the respective sizes of their companies- from 6ft 5 Llewellyn Clarke down to 5ft nothing MaxiCraft Sports- and the different brands of raincoats they were wearing. “It has come to our attention that late last night you were able to synthesise a new sort of fabric- Gastorx- that can be used in raincoats. Naturally, this news came most interesting to us. We therefore decided to do away with the decorum of the holiday season and pay you a visit with the utmost urgent, as we felt was appropriate given the circumstances.”“Well I don't understand, I don't see why this can't wait, I'll be wanting to pitch this fabric to you but I'm sure it can wait until after the Christmas holidays. I don't make raincoats myself as you probably know, but I'd be happy to sell any of you the rights to my fabric.”“So you say, Mr Gast,” replied Llewellyn Clarke. “But our existing fabric suppliers are concerned. They'll think we're trying to undercut them. So you see that we must act in good faith to our existing friends, or else what is friendship to anyone? Hence the formality of this visit.”“I'm still not sure I understand. Can this really not wait until after Christmas? I'm having a quiet holiday season at home with my wife.” The normally very mild-mannered David Gast was almost on the verge of getting annoyed.“Perhaps we should talk elsewhere,” said Llewellyn Clarke. “You should excuse yourself for the afternoon and come with us to the Armitage House warehouse, its just a short walk from here, that would be ideal for our purposes.”“But I can't do that,” replied David. “It's Christmas Day. We'll talk after the holidays. Good day, gentlemen.” And so David Gast made to shut the door.“Wait,” said Llewellyn Clarke, grabbing the door as David tried to close it. Llewellyn Clarke's eyes darted to the side and down, and following them David looked across to see that the representative from MaxiCraft Sports, standing next to Llewellyn Clarke, had pulled out a small pistol that was poking out from the side of his raincoat, pointing it at David.“OK,” said David. “Ok. OK.” David leaned inside and called to his wife: “I have to go out for a bit, darling!”“What?” came the woman's voice from inside. “But it's Christmas! Where are you going?”“It's hard to explain!” said David. “It's to do with my fabric, I'll tell you when I get back!”And so David stepped outside with the seven representatives and followed them through the cold streets to an industrial district on the outskirts of town, quiet now on the holidays away from the Christmas lights. David shivered the whole way there- he had been too afraid after seeing the gun to dare step back inside to get a coat and put on some outside shoes. And then, there was always the added element of danger when you're with seven maliciously-intentioned men at least one of whom is armed.The Armitage House warehouse was dark and empty, in a strange dead building that looked like it had used to be a synagogue, but so did all the warehouses round here- they were in an area that used to be very heavily Jewish, but now everyone seemed to have left and all the buildings all boarded up or else being used as warehouses, like this one. The representative from Armitage House opened the door with a huge, heavy key attached to a chain round his neck. The lights took a while to all turn on, but when they did, the coats all rose up above the eyes of David and the representatives, mounds and mounds of coats stacked up columns, fine black Armitage House raincoats, probably hundreds of thousands of them, folded neatly and compressed, now thanks to David's recent invention all soon to be obsolete.“You see all these raincoats?” Llewellyn Clarke said to him. “You see what you've done to them, by inventing that fabric? We can't let you do this, Mr Gast. We really can't.”And so then all the representatives were upon him. Splish-Splosh punched him in the gut as Tracker pushed him into one of the big mounds of raincoats, which toppled over, and in the pile the rest of them all cluttered onto him, kicking him in the legs, chest, and face, except for Llewellyn Clarke who just stood apart, watching, his arms folded, nodding. David tried to struggle free but Armitage House held down his arms, pinning him and then holding him up for all of the rest of them to keep on hitting him, and he was bruised and broken and he started to bleed, the front of his new cashmere jumper ripped open and grazed flesh shining out. And then when he was stunned and looking on at the beating with a swaying, detached gaze, from inside his eyeballs, a call that David couldn't quite comprehend went out, and the blows suddenly stopped, and the representatives stepped off, and David thought he might be free, but he couldn't get up, all he could do was just turn from side to side in the big pile of toppled-over raincoats, and then the last thing that David Gast saw was the representative from Llewellyn Clarke striding up to him, taking a sawn-off shotgun out from beneath the folds of his beautiful but inferior to anything that his company might have designed with David's help Llewellyn Clarke raincoat, and pulling the trigger.RECOMMENDED

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