(A guest blog spot by ISS Associate Editor Elaine Foxwell.)
Has anyone been tempted, out of curiosity or maybe an overwhelming yen, to collect any and all esoteric music, to purchase the CD by British musical group The Playwrights called English Self Storage? Anyone? Anyone?
I have to admit, I was really curious. First, the English in the title got to me. Im English, born, bred and still loyal to the Crown. So, anything Anglophile must be investigated. Second, was the Self Storage in the album name. What could self-storage have to do with music?
I know bands use catchy album names. Titles such as Thrall-Demonsweat, or Shovel Headed Kill Machine lurking on the shelves at the local music store definitely grab the eye even if youre not into heavy metal. But why English Self Storage? With track titles such as Fear of Open Spaces, or Movements Towards a Paperless Life, I had to give it a listen.
Now, I enjoy listening to speed metal, some of the harshest music known to man. But the CD by the Playwrights is like a bad English winterit leaves me feeling damp, chilled and miserable. And several online reviews concur. Just to share one comment from a review by A.L. Harper who says, The resulting cacophony is headache inducing, disingenuous and discomfited.
Luckily, the real English self-storage market is not discomfited. In fact, the industry is very comfortable thanks in no small part to the design of most British homes, which are rarely built with much storage space. Also, my fellow countrypersons are as acquisitive as their American counterparts. And they like keeping their stuff around.
Spaces Self Storage states on its online FAQs the industry saw annual average growth rate of 25 percent to 30 percent and a total market estimated at £280 million in 2005. This year, Lok'nStore Group received a £40 million bank loan. U Can Store It, based in Walsall, England. just opened a new facility. And in an innovative move, eBay experts, Auctioning4u, is collaborating with Brightons Big Yellow Self Storage to allow Brighton and East Sussex customers to drop their goods off at the facility to sell online.
Not to ignore Englands northern neighbor, the self storage market in Scotland is growing rapidly with operators planning to open more stores throughout the country. Across the Irish Sea, Barons Self Storage in Galway has launched Irelands first free storage transport service.
Jolly good news all around, Id say. Anyway, although I fully support nearly all things English, my suggestion is to avoid English Self Storage, the CD that is.
And as a side note, if anyone has any music suggestions for me to try, drop me a line at email@example.com.