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Plutonium Blondes: A Spotify Playlist For The Korean Crisis
John Calvert , November 26th, 2010 10:50

'Calm' John Calvert assesses situation in Korea from his nuclear bunker in Belfast...

Click here to listen to John Calvert's Plutonium Blondes Apocalypse Playlist.

We're trying to work here, and talk to girls, but all we keep thinking about is World War Three.

To get you up to speed - it's Friday, it's Spotify-list time, and not accounting for wind direction, almost everyone east of Marrakesh will be dead by Thursday lunchtime. The good news is - that includes Magaluf.

I'm exaggerating, of course. But every now and then, you get a feeling it's only a matter of time. "Heaven knows what keeps mankind alive" as David Byrne sang on 'Home'. There's India and a smugly nuclear Pakistan at logger-heads after the Mumbai massacre; there's American reconstruction financiers circling an unstable Iran, while Ahmadinejad enriches uranium like stirring mother's hot jam. Then there's Obama's new NPT provision,which runs roughshod over accepted rules for pre-emptive nuclear war. And to cap it off, Africa is fucked and global world terrorism has increased seven-fold since the invasion of Afghanistan, and then there's this. North Korea's first attack on civilians in the South since 1953 certainly pushes Quietus' doomsday clock a couple of minutes closer to midnight. We're trying to work here, and talk to girls, but all we keep thinking about is World War Three.

If you haven't been following the 'Inter-Korean Crisis', here's how the numbers stack up so far. After definitely not torpedoing South Korean warship Cheonan in June, on Tuesday, North Korea – the world's only officially nuclear dictatorship – raised a couple of dozen buildings on neighbouring South Korean island Yeonpyeong, killing four and injuring scores, with many fleeing the island by, uh, ferry. In response, the goodies, ha, sorry, I mean the South Koreans blew off some rounds too, dropping eighty or so shells onto significant military targets beyond the maritime border. Boys will be boys, eh? North Korean casualties remain unknown, mostly because it's arguably the most perfectly realised Totalitarian state in history, a 'hermit kingdom', which means no one really knows exactly what is going on in the nation's capital, Pyongyang.

It was all hands on deck in the ensuing hours, with South Korean Defense Minister Kim Tae-Young squaring up with the sinister "Enormous retaliation should be made to the extent that [North Korea] cannot make provocations again". And in a slightly more childish statement, North Korean overlord Kim Jong-Li (little guy; think Elton John in video for 'Sacrifice') threatened retaliation "If the South violate its sea border, even by 0.001 of a millimeter". Ha. It's also worth noting Fox News' immediate response. On their segment show 'Fox and Friends' (sounds like a children's talk show) a guest 'expert' advised the Stiffler-like anchorman (more of a wrestling commentator) that America should 'take out' the entire North Korean naval fleet. God bless the BBC, is all I can say.

Both countries have been eyeing each suspiciously since Tuesday, with the rest of the world calling for restraint after Seoul scrambled fighter jets, declaring a state of heightened alert. Britain chided politely, Germany and France tendered their interests and Japan deployed Samsung-owned snipers on their western coast in fear of Korean refugees approaching from the Sea of Japan. America have pledged support for South Korea (the eighth largest exporter in the world - it makes good business sense) whilst China, the primary benefactors to North Korea (handy for buffering a land war) responded with the diplomatic equivalent of "Sorry, what? Nah, missed it mate. Nice lapels, by the way. EVERYBODY RUN. SCARPER LIKE FUCK!"

Of course the North Korean threat has always loomed on the horizon of the South's unrelenting economic growth. They even wrote a film about it, symbolised by the gun-metal coloured amphibian in Southie Blockbuster The Host. Recently however, North Korea has made a few changes in personnel, and the new management are a cause for concern. Coinciding exactly with the recent unrest, is the ascendency of Kim Jong -Il's successor and youngest son, Kim Jong-Un, introduced to the world at last month's ICBMs & Pringles mixer in Pyongyang. Because analysts can only speculate to the political stability of North Korea, the attacks could either be Junior's way of getting the country's hard-line military on board, or more worryingly the military have rejected the succession are are challenging his authority. Either way, there's a bad moon rising, or a bad Un, if you like.

So, cannibalism has broken out in Iceland, marshal law is declared in Dublin, and Sarah Palin has another shot at the presidency in 2012. Here in Northern Ireland conveyance solicitors are washing cars on my street to make rent, our yellow 'library express' bus has been converted into a suicide ambulance, and I'm out of coffee. American casualties in Iraq surpass the numbered dead on 9/11 (3,500 as of this October past, though nothing compared to the 1.3 million Iraqis) and Simon Cowell is immortal. What better time, then, to put your feet up and enjoy The Quietus' very own exit strategy, our apocalypse-themed / Inter-Korean inspired extravaganza of bad puns and bad headed pop.

"You can't fight in here gentlemen. This is the war room!"

L7 'Wargasm'
Billy Joel 'We Didn't Start The Fire'
Can 'Mushroom'
Future Of The Left 'Real Men Hunt In Packs'
Delta 5 'Mind Your Own Business'
Bauhaus 'Double Dare'
Salem 'Asia'
Magazine 'Shot By Both Sides'
Outkast 'B.O.B.'
Burial 'Southern Comfort'
Yoko Ono & Jason Pierce 'Walking On Thin Ice'
Pere Ubu '30-Seconds Over Tokyo'
The Jim Carroll Band 'People Who Died' Pixies 'Wave Of Mutilation' (UK Surf)
OMD 'Enola Gay'
Portishead 'Threads'
Vera Lynn 'We'll Meet Again'
Minutemen 'Paranoid Chant'