Thursday, June 12, 2008

Sony, yay!

We just bought a Sony hifi system! It's this one here: CMT-HX90BTR. We will be picking it up on Saturday, it just arrived to our local Sony store now, but we need the car to carry it home, I think.

It looks great:

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posted by Andrea Leite Marques at 12:48 PM 0 comments

Thursday, August 23, 2007

I love Amy! Awww....

This cute, adorable, precious little girl is... Amy Winehouse! Or should I say WineMouse? Heee! I found it in some web news, due to her gone in rehab (for real, I mean). Isn't she lovely? Yeah, I know it sounds pretty much like the Stevie Wonder song, but what a cutie! The same face as today's! People talk and talk about her, but I think she is just amazing. They talk about her beehive, her eye liner, how tiny thin she is, but let's face it: she is amazing, she sings like the oldies, classical ladies of Song, she is the best these days. I agree she looked gorgeous by the time of the 1st CD, Frank. And although I prefer Back to Black, she is not looking as stunning as she was then. But I love her for her quirkiness, and her vulnerability. She is a girl with problems, and she admits it. One must only admire her.

Reminiscing now... I once dressed up as a Mouse too. Not Minnie, but Mickey Mouse. I was much older than Amy though. 19 or 20, er, a bit too old for the part, I admit. It was a costume party and I went my Mum and my Stepfather, Paulo Boneff. I had black tights, a large denim short, a man's shirt (Paulo's), big round shoes, a black ribbon as a tail, white satin gloves, a nose painted just like Amy's and my Mickey Mouse hat. Why was that so memorable? Well, Paulo drank lots and lots and got seriously stoned. He was a huge man and I was scared because he was moving and shouting like a troll. I started to cry, and the only thing I remember is how black my poor satin gloves become 'cause I cried and wiped my face, cried and wiped my nose, cried and rubbed my face (including my very own rodent's nose) with my impeccable rodent's satin gloves! Everything was OK in the end, of course. But it was something I never forgot!

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posted by Andrea Leite Marques at 6:59 AM 0 comments

Friday, December 01, 2006

End of an era...

21 days with no posts, that's way too long and I even complain about some of my lazy friends (and Mark too) who don't blog very often... Shame on me! Well, I did not have time, or rather, any will to sit down and write. Some stressful weeks I had...

And the apocalyptic title of this post refers to my last day in SITA, which was yesterday. As I mentioned on a previous post the Dublin office has closed down and most people were made redundant (including myself). As such, it's the end of an era alright: VTI, then Eland Technologies and, lastly, SITA. I was there for 6 and a half years. So, it was strange seeing the office being dismantled, and a bit sad.

Most people were happy though (not everybody, I must say). And most people have new jobs already, which is great. I don't, but this is because I will have a sabbatic year, as Mark and I have decided when we had the news of the imminent redundancy some months ago. Having this career break will be very good for me, for I finally will be able to try and get some control over my health by going to the gym in an attempt to improve my condition (fatigue, and unfitness of course!). If the medications did not work, this would be my last resource, according to the doctors. Abandon the sedentary life and have a go to a more active lifestyle etc...

So, we were in the office yesterday signing the papers and then we all went for lunch in the Purty Kitchen, our local pub-restaurant. It was good. I really enjoyed myself and almost, almost cried. My colleague Ian surprised me with a nice present: a Lord Of The Rings/Royal Mail promotional watch, very pretty. I thought it was very nice of him. And I had funny chats with the guys. Then we all left and said goodbye, although of course we will be keeping in touch. Or so I hope!

It was raining, they went to the Monkstown dart station and I headed home. On the way, I stopped at the little Purty Emporium and they were playing Coldplay's Yellow. Then some tears came to my eyes, and a nostalgic sensation invaded me of a sudden. Somehow this song always touches me, and the situation was, I must say, a bit sad. I don't know. Yes, the end of something, and as people say, the "1st day of the rest of our lives".

That was it. I stopped at the convenience store and had a long chat with the Indian manager (the system was down and I could not buy anything). This has cheered me up, we laughed and talked about India, Brasil and Ireland as real expats do! It was interesting and it also made me stop thinking about "the past", my still very recent past.

That's it. That was it. I am here, and free to start something anew.

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posted by Andrea Leite Marques at 7:34 PM 0 comments

Friday, November 10, 2006

Deadly Singer...


I was reading in the Irish Independent today that James Blunt has been declared King of Funerals! Let's face it: it was bound to happen, really! It says his song "Goodbye My Lover" is on the top parades of funeral services in the UK!

What can I say, what can I say except... "Told ya!"

The first time I heard that on the radio I thought: "What da heck?" and mentioned to Mark it was a seriously suicidal song - besides being extremely monotone and boring, as everything else he's composed so far. You know the stuff: horrible rhymes, depressive lyrics, run-of-the-mill, blah melodies and that utterly awful voice of his. Yes, I hate James Blunt. Since that joke of a song called "You're Beautiful", I just cannot stand the guy.

I saw him being interviewed on TV once and it was creepy. He sounds like a very old man that smoked 20 packs of cigs daily for his entire life or someone who has has had a tracheostomy - bound to talk through that opening for the rest of his life. I know it sounds terrible and I may seem mean by saying it, but that's what I think when I listen to the guy, either singing or speaking.

I wonder when the Southpark writers will make an episode where he stars??

(Sorry if you are a fan, but I just had to rant about it! Ultimately, it's a personal choice, no?)


posted by Andrea Leite Marques at 11:42 AM 0 comments

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

Pure Beauty: Shiina Ringo

From Tokyo Jihen's DVD "Just Can't Help It". Wonderful song, beautiful mise-em-scène. Shiina Ringo is a gem of a singer. This DVD is worth getting. I got mine from CDJapan - as usual!


Nure yuki ya Odawara de waraeba yokarou
Minami wa mou kobore ume

"Kitai nado shite imasen."
Ima mo hodoita te no naka nani mo nai mama

Onna ga nakeba otoko wa nigeru
torikaesu you na busui wa shinai koto sa

"Oboete wa inai deshou." Ano hi tsunaida te no naka saita yakusoku

Onna ga mateba otoko wa damaru
Tokedashita nara isoide hora
Wasurete shimae
Otoko wa korosu no sa
Hayaku tate
Kogoete shimawanai you ni


posted by Andrea Leite Marques at 10:41 PM 12 comments

Monday, October 02, 2006

More Keroro Gunso

I tried to order the ending song for Keroro's episodes 52-78 on Yes Asia, but unfortunately, the CD is out of stock. I could not find it in CDJapan either.
That would be "Katte ni Shinryakusha" by Naoya Ogawa and Mayuko Iwasa. Here is the cover of the CD, which is actually a single:
No problem, it's in my wish list nonetheless. And here it the clip for the ending theme, taken from the anime series. It's very catchy!

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posted by Andrea Leite Marques at 11:26 PM 0 comments

Sunday, October 01, 2006

Another Clip: Weapon of Choice

This weekend, I am kind of obsessed with cool musical clips. Fat Boy Slim's "Weapon of Choice" with gawjus Christopher Walken ( to think that he is 62 now, huh?) is just amazing, a classic. That man is a great dancer - although mostly renowned by being a great actor. Irresistible...


posted by Andrea Leite Marques at 10:54 AM 0 comments

Ok go

This is an amazing clip. Mark showed it to me on MTV this morning and I just love it. These guys are really skillfull, and look like really cute geeks, he he! I am glad I found it on Youtube!


posted by Andrea Leite Marques at 12:40 AM 0 comments

Thursday, August 10, 2006

Afuro Gunso, yeah, Afuro...

Afro Gunso (Romaji Lyrics):
Hello mommy!!! This is for you, he he!!!

Aikotoba wa afuro to gunsou
Afuro (afuro) gunsou (gunsou) 3,2,1, faiya-!
Afuro gunsou afuro gunsou wa afuro
Afuro gunsou afuro gunsou wa afuro
Ranbou ni hipparuna kiyasuku yubi de tsumamuna
Sore ijyou chikazukuna itzura suruna sawaruna!
Chiri chiri jori jori babe
Bosa bosa (kushya kushya) mojya mojya
Kibishii tatakai daga tonikaku haragoshirae
Byuaa na uchyuu no seimei sunao sugi teheso magari
Teki wa kinpatsu de sutore-to 3,2,1 Faiya-!
Afuro gunsou afuro gunsou wa afuro
Afuro gunsou afuro gunsou wa afuro

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posted by Andrea Leite Marques at 8:13 PM 1 comments

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Keroro Ending Song - my favorite!!!

Isn't it super kawaii???
Just LOVE that song and now I need to find the Romaji lyrics!
The song is called PEKOPON SHINRYAKU ONDOU, a Summer ending song for the series.
I have the CD, and the lyrics in Japanese, but not Romaji, unfortunately...
(And I cannot read Japanese, boo-hooo!!!)
If by any chance anyone has it, please let me know, OK?

Domo arigatou!

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posted by Andrea Leite Marques at 2:00 AM 1 comments

Thursday, June 29, 2006

Asobi Seksu: Newton's rec, brilliant!

I have just received a message from my friend Newton, with a suberb CD recommendation. The band is called Asobi Seksu, and consists of one Japanese female vocalist (Yuki) and three American guys. They are said to be one of the best New York bands nowadays, and you can sample their last CD, Citrus, on their website! I am now listening to the tracks (samples, samples, very very short!) and loving it, so, this must be the First on my wish list now.

Newton thinks they sound a bit like Cocteau Twins, which I love, especially Yuki's voice. Still according to him, it can be compared - to some extent - to Cocteau's vocalist Liz Fraser, and I pretty much agree. Newton also mentions some simmilarity to Lush - but I must say I don't know them to agree or disagree (another group being added to my wish list, it seems!)... What I think is, if you like the style of Cocteau Twins and My Bloody Valentine as well, this is a must-try, must-have, whatever! A must. It's really catchy and atmospheric. I am enchanted, aaaahhh... And mind you, all this enthusiasm coming just from hearing the samples.

Newton has that blog but he seems to have become a very lazy poster lately! I admire and respect very much his musical opinions, and he is always introducing me to some bands and singers I abolutely adore nowadays (Maki Nomiya and Pizzicato 5, Shiina Ringo etc). Newton is a DJ and know his stuff very well. When he started blogging he wrote a little post for me, he he! I thought it was so cool: Nonstop to Tokyo (02/08/2004). And I love the P5 pictures he selected. I followed his recommendations from the blog and became a big P5 fan in the end... Here's another of their pictures I love - stylishly kitsch, unmistakeably P5-ish, just brill...

Now, back again to Asobi Seksu... their songs by the way, are sung in both Japanese and English. I was reading in their bio that Asobi Seksu is the Japanese word for "playful sex", ahem...


posted by Andrea Leite Marques at 9:42 PM 1 comments

Thursday, April 13, 2006

Do as Infinity (arrived today!)

I just received this fantastic double CD from DAI (Do As Infinity) from CDJapan. It also comes with a DVD containing clips from all featured songs. It is a real pity they are no longer together, but this special compilation is a treat for all their fans.

I think I already have most songs in other DAI's CD's, and I especially love "Fukai Mori" (end theme for InuYasha), and "Yesterday and Today". This is a must-have indeed! I am delighted.

The clips on the DVD are just gorgeous, everything looks like a dream, and all very well produced. Van Tomiko has an exceptional voice and a catchy presence, as do Owatari Ryo and Nagao Dai. They are all so beautiful and talented! All in all, this is an excellent product, with beautiful, top quality presentation, and I am very happy with my purchase. Could not recommend it highly enough!

I only wished they had also the clip for "Raven", the ending song for the horror film "Uzumaki" - a very strange film, based on the (also very strange) manga by Junji Ito.

(I have published this mini-review in the CDJapan website, by the way.)


posted by Andrea Leite Marques at 9:22 PM 0 comments

Wednesday, February 15, 2006

Susumu Hirasawa CD's

He is certainly one of my favourites composers/musicians nowadays. Susumu Hirasawa. Today, I have received 3 of his CD's that I've ordered from CDJapan:

- Kenja No Propeller (aka "Philosopher's Propeller");
- Blue Limbo;
- Millenium Actress original soundtrack.

He was born in 1954 in Tokyo, and is a master in electronic music, widely known in the West by his anime and game soundtracks mostly. He is the founder of the techno-band P-Model, with whom he's been working through the 80's until he finally decided to fly solo in 1989, but still keeping his work with the band albeit less frequently.

His first CD in my collection was the soundtrack for Satoshi Kon's Paranoia Agent, which is superb, with moments alternating between peaceful melancholy and absolute frenzy. Not to be missed. His work seems like a mix of brilliantly orchestrated world music and techno, his songs infused with a supranatural, ethereal quality, which brings them to an almost-"anthem" category. As an example of this, we could mention Paranoia Agent's track "Dream Island Obsessional Park", a joy to listen to.

He can also be sadly romantic and beautifully melodic, solemn, and literally bring tears to one's eyes, as in Millenium Actress's "Chiyoko's Theme". It's just too beautiful. The film also is a gem, unmissable. Hirasawa-san is an activist as well, and also a researcher (and user) of solar energy in his work.

It's really worth visiting his webpage. There you can find free MP3's (never saw such a generous artist, truth to be told!), samples of his released works and also his (also free) Songs Against Carnage - a humanitarian/political statement above all, but also a vivid example of his fantastic work.

Finally - and I only found that today - we can also buy directly from his webpage (CD's and DVD's). It seems he was a pioneer of selling MP3's via web in Japan. At any rate, I am very happy with my purchases! Will listen to some of it now!

Good night!



posted by Andrea Leite Marques at 6:27 PM 1 comments

Saturday, November 12, 2005

Today's CD: Composer Meets Director...

I got a new CD yesterday: Joe Hisaishi Meets Kitano Films. It is a selection of great music composed by Joe Hisaishi for some of the most memorable Takeshi Kitano's films.

It is a must-have for Kitano's fans, truly capturing the mood and atmosphere of those films. This is my very first Hisaishi's CD, whose work I really love: his soundtracks for Hayao Miyazaki's films are equally magnificent, real gems, and that's how I actually got acquainted to his work. Then, watching Kitano's films I thought: "Who is this composer, this music is so gorgeous..." And I saw it was Joe Hisaishi again. Not surprised though, he is just brilliant.

The music is perfect. If you see these films, you may feel how beautifully it flows through the story, and the sceneries, acting, everything. It can be jazzy in parts, traditional in others, sentimental, and violent when required. Just perfectly synchronised with the plot - be it a Kitano or a Miyazaki production.

Piano, Japanese drums, synthesizers and haunting vocals are sure to please not only die-hard Kitano's fans, but even people who are not familiar with his films. The tracks on this CD come from several films such as Hana-Bi (definitely one of my favourites, including the mesmerizing track "Thanks For Everything" ), Kikujiro, Sonatine, Brother and A Scene at the Sea.

Follows the CD cover... In case you are interested, it can be purchased at Amazon:

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posted by Andrea Leite Marques at 11:12 PM 1 comments

Sunday, September 04, 2005


Long time no blogging, it seems! Today I am back. First of all, a report of the weather here: just the way I like it. Rainy and fresh now. Lovely breeze coming through the windows... Relaxing...

My Mother is arriving to Dublin on Tuesday, so, I managed to clean the house to perfection today. And by myself, because Mark has a back ache. He normally helps me out. Actually he still did: since the kitchen is his territory, he scrubbed it so clean that it would make Aggie and Kim very proud! (Yeah, the ladies from the TV series "How Clean is Your House").

While I write this, I am listening to a wonderful Japanese singer. Her name is Shiina Ringo. She has a wonderful voice and sings not only in Japanese, but also French, English and even Portuguese, to my surprise! Her choice of a Brazilian song is "Manhã de Carnaval", an old Vinicius de Moraes' song from the classic Brazilian movie "Orfeu Negro". I love her singing in French, the accent is just perfect. She sings "Feuilles Mortes", alternating between French and English, and it is such an original, almost funky version. Just beautiful. Well, that lady simply rocks. The arrangements are superb, needless to say, and the album presentation is amazing, as only in Japan we can find. Check that out:

CD Title: Utaite Myouri, 2CD, Toshiba- EMI.

Finally, Mark has been to Washington DC some days ago and came back last weekend. He took lots of pictures, which are quite good. I hope he will be posting them soon. Anyway, he took one that I especially loved. It's from a shop that sells Japanese goods, called "Ginza" (what else???) He told me he could not go in because it was closed by the time he passed by, but look at that!

As you can see, all things
I love are there (just click on the pic to see it bigger): Manekineko, Hello Kitty, nice ceramics and who knows what else! I really wish I was there, can you imagine? That would be paradise!

Now I need to go, we are starting to watch "Violent Cop" by the ever-so-wonderful Takeshi Kitano. Just love his films... They are, I know, very violent, and it's strange to see someone who so much loves "cute" things to appreciate this kind of films, but there we go. I love them. From soundtrack to acting, Kitano's films are something everybody should watch at least once. Meaning, you should not die before you do it! Ditto.

See you later then!

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posted by Andrea Leite Marques at 8:03 PM 0 comments