posted on March 1, 2006 at 12:40 am

billy franklin was a MEMORY dealer
he lived in a shadow between the Verdant Parks
and the burnt ruins of the Maze
i.d been to see him plenty, fiendss
i met plenty of other M addicts at his place
we’re all waiting around downstairs
in that dark spiderwebbed and creaky house
while billy and his missus
theyre up there weighing up the fuckin M
squabbling and hassling
and carrying on
thatss too much for him…
no i owed him some….
fucken bullshit rhonda…
their bickering hissed into a whisper
we downstairs strained our ears to hear
it had gone quiet up there
this was a badde sign for us jonesin’ ninnies
down below
it meant they were kissing and “making uppe”
and or
they were sampling their own goodes
which was very badde for us
i recognised namen turner there
the famous actor
he was the guy who played napoleon
in that special on the hustler channel
he also used to go out with the chick
in the gillette commercials
who o.d.ed on m and e and h and c
the alphabet heiress or airhead
trumpeted the daily muck
a reputable gossip-paper
who printed all those lies about
about my crazed rampages
and subsequent arrests
turner caught my eye
goodaye sk, ya been waitin long?
turner proffered a limp pale hand
i ignored it
he was jonesin’ bad
i felt nothing for him
shooting MEMORY had fucked up my compassion
i didnt care if turner waited here all day
im next namen
i said in a dry voice that crackled and fizzed
when they come down, theyre lookin after me
yeah no problem
said the little wimp
oh yeah hey sk
i gotta my own band now
you should come and see us
we’re playing the leather martini
next tuesday, putcha name onna door?
dont bother i said
i aint coming
the last thing this whirld needs
is another fuckin actor strummin a geetar
and comin on all indy..
fuck you kilbey
turner snarled
youll see…
suddenly with much stumbling and wheezing
franklin and rhonda came back down the stairs
the M fiendss gathered round
like a pack of pidgeons round an olde lady
with breadcrumbs
pecking and squawking at each other
billy tossed me my lil packet contemptuously
you dont get much for 500 these days mate
i gazed in disbelief
at the tiny little bit of MEMORY
hed given me
i looked up
if you dont like it go to hell
turner smirked at me
well look what i got here
he held up his bulging packet
now both of you get the fuck out of my house
billy pushed us to the door
turner nipped off into a waiting taxi
and sped outta site
but i knew where that little fiend lived
mercury towers
down the end of merlin street
i took an elektrotram down to the docks
from there on foot
to mercury towers
graffitied to read:
MEMORY towers
i went up to turners floor
i came here once years ago
to a party and someone had said
thats namen turners place…
i banged on his door
like a foole he opened it
he was loaded like a dice
he was ethered like a salmon
he was as spliced as a bad film
i grabbed him
turner, can i just lend a little M off ya?
he lurched backwards into his hall
he hadda a load of pre-war era stuff on the wall
i began pushing my hands thru his pockets
looking for the fucking stuffe
he grabbed a knife from somewhere
and slashed my forehead
you little bastard i hissed
then he sank it deep into my heart
my life passed before my eyes
i watched it all second by second
all slowed down and exploded
multi angled and precise
yet incredibly fast
and it was over
there was an ineffable freedom
it was the release i’d always imagined
to go everywhere
or just be nowhere
it lasted for a million years

when i opened my eyes
i was surprised to see billy franklin
squinting down at me
man you better take it easy with this stuff
youre onstage in 2 minutes…
hey billy..
i struggled to talk
is my lute in tune….?

29 Responses to “painkiller”

  1. avatar
    wytch | 1 March 2006 at 1:45 am #

    absolutely scrumptious writing there Kilbey
    how long is it gonna take you to realise you should be keeping this all in your own PC ready to hand over to THE publisher when you’re good and ready.
    You already have the story and the discipline to write everyday (well almost) so
    why not make all of us vampires,friends and sycophants just fucking wait and then PAY to hear your take on life.
    It’s all yours for the taking.
    It will be huGE.


  2. avatar
    Anonymous | 1 March 2006 at 1:45 am #

    Encore, Encore fukn brilliant you iconic bastard – like a cross between the Young Ones BAd News tour & Bladerunner!!
    Waiting in the wings feelin kinda sick Eh?

    By the way did you know MC Hammer started a blog in Feb.

    Dutch Pierre

  3. avatar
    Anonymous | 1 March 2006 at 1:51 am #

    he can’t touch this…

  4. avatar
    Daberhasher | 1 March 2006 at 2:04 am #

    yonder paul bowles who rocks and rolls, i say wicked, wicked, wicked… clammy hands from your shadowy tale…


  5. avatar
    Handyman | 1 March 2006 at 2:06 am #

    That was fucking and utterly brilliant. We love ya sk. Thanks for the ride.


  6. avatar
    TINKU BHAT | 1 March 2006 at 2:22 am #

    Like some kind of Rasputin magician, you open your magic bag of treats and mystify us again. What is it today? Cyberscifi, yesterday mythosureal, tomorrow…surprise me.

    Thanks for your beautiful talent, now back to my take on Austrian Expressionism, er Art Neuveau.

  7. avatar
    Anonymous | 1 March 2006 at 2:43 am #


    Good name for a band that

  8. avatar
    Anonymous | 1 March 2006 at 2:59 am #

    Dutch Pierre darling,

    No, not The Young Ones or the Bad News bit of satire. Little Rikky Mayall is nothing like Steve and I should know.

    For the surreal angle you’re getting at I think what you mean is something from Comic Strip Presents (from whence Bad News came) like the episode “Les Dogs.” And that was all down to the genius that is Peter fucking Richardson, before whom all should bow down or be smitten into nothingness and everlasting night. Damn, but he was good as the utterly twisted Mr. Lovebucket in the episode Mr. Jolly Lives Next Door. Rivalling Alan Rickman in acting even.

    Sorry, carry on…


  9. avatar
    Anonymous | 1 March 2006 at 3:01 am #

    love love
    how you keep
    us guessing sk…

    from a ride
    with the griswalds
    to a stroll
    down the
    twilight zone

    every day
    a new adventure

    thanks sk

  10. avatar
    fergal | 1 March 2006 at 3:19 am #

    could u ever get off the stuff that spellbound u?

  11. avatar
    avalon | 1 March 2006 at 3:25 am #

    Got El Momento in the mail today. Still, small, quiet, and quite delightful. (As opposed to dark, small so fragile…)

    A credit and accolades to the whole masterful band. Love the new takes on old tunes. Never had heard All I Know. Love it.

  12. avatar
    OTTOMT | 1 March 2006 at 3:47 am # this stuff that brews in your cauldron…
    I’ll caputure the rapture in black and white polaroids, 1955, long shadows, rain kissed streets, overcoats, bald tires and a heart stopping ride up to widow’s peak.

  13. avatar
    captainmission | 1 March 2006 at 4:18 am #

    Lutes in tune
    Love ya work, it’s a book i tells ya, a book a play and then a film.
    It’s space noir, kinda Burroughs, PKD and Raymond Chandler with bits of Anime and some Irvine Weslh. Go quantum Steve, write the book, get your own tv show and run for president. You got my vote.

  14. avatar
    Anonymous | 1 March 2006 at 5:16 am #

    Hey Avalon!
    All I Know is my favourite, too, on EL, I mean as far as new ones go on that particular album.
    I was having a rough time when I bought that album and I think it was the only thing that stood by me and helped me get through.

  15. avatar
    Anonymous | 1 March 2006 at 12:10 pm #

    I reading this blog Painkiller tomorrow, now and yesterday.
    Your’re always a good read and listen.
    Really enjoyed that!

    If you publish the blogs I’II buy two or one depending, The Church have always seem to outlive my relationships.

    I see that Grant Lee Phillips is covering a church song (what’s the chance its UMW)along with other groups like the smiths,cure,rem,new order, nick cave etc.
    Imgaine if every GLP fan goes out and starts buying Church albums(if they are new to the band and a bit slow or young).
    Then you have all the smith,cure, new order,nick cave, pixies etc fanbase buying GLP and getting turned onto the church(if not already)and buying all the Church albums ever made(plus solo and side projects).You might have to higher more staff at churchmerch.

    Imagine if UMW is GLP’s biggest hit ever and before you know it he’s playing it on the gilmore girls, fuck that would be funny!

    I hope so, spread the good word(s) according to the Church.

  16. avatar
    12str | 1 March 2006 at 1:00 pm #

    its like a dream within a dream..
    film noirish…

    he was bleeding bad but there were no cuts..

    ha de bäst!

  17. avatar
    12str | 1 March 2006 at 1:11 pm #

    theres a swedish group..
    The Knife
    “silent shout” from their new album…

    dark,magical,synthezised with a twist…

    goode stuff maan!
    can u dig it!


  18. avatar
    Brad | 1 March 2006 at 1:47 pm #

    Yeah. I’m smiling. I’ll be thinkin’ about this, your blog entry, all day. A Naked Lunch, but in the house of Kilbey. Thanks.


  19. avatar
    CeciliaGin | 1 March 2006 at 3:26 pm #

    it was the release i’d always imagined
    to go everywhere
    or just be nowhere
    it lasted for a million years

    fue un descanso que siempre imaginé
    de ir a todas partes
    ó estar en ninguna
    duró un millón de años

  20. avatar
    Anonymous | 1 March 2006 at 6:28 pm #

    I once wrote a tune called “garden of memory”, named after a cemetary out around Longmont, CO. It wasn’t a very good song. In light of this post, however, I kinda see it in a whole other light…

    I mean, can you imagine a WHOLE GARDEN FULL???

  21. avatar
    Anonymous | 1 March 2006 at 9:50 pm #

    0408 was easily the best song on El
    Very different to a lot of traditional Church songs …
    if you could call it that

  22. avatar
    Anonymous | 1 March 2006 at 10:20 pm #

    Thanks SK

    That was incredible – had me hooked ’till the end. Please write an autobiography.



  23. avatar
    Krissythegroupie | 1 March 2006 at 11:19 pm #

    You’re so gangsta!

  24. avatar
    matt davison | 1 March 2006 at 11:43 pm #

    Not Bad S……… Ok F-in Brilliant!!

    The mind you own, is a kaleidoscope. A thick void of cables, channels, and wires that swoon through the dark blankets of space heading towards our kitchens and earphones. With the desire of a thousand virgins.. the sound and vision that is….. Steve the K.

    Go you good thang.

  25. avatar
    Anonymous | 2 March 2006 at 12:38 am #

    well ok, i agree with the book thing. you should write another one!! but hey, why not keep the aside stories right here, like driving yer family around in john’s car…
    go ahead, keep us waiting, but also laughing!

  26. avatar
    matthew | 2 March 2006 at 11:12 pm #

    Loved it.

    love, matthew

  27. avatar
    turner | 3 March 2006 at 1:01 am #

    That’s not how I remember it at all. You was beggin’.

  28. avatar
    sue cee | 3 March 2006 at 11:37 am #

    … “is my lute in tune?” … classic!

  29. avatar
    Letango | 5 March 2006 at 1:49 am #

    Love it

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