What do you do on a day off ?

I love hearing the different excuses that fishermen come up with for having to go fishing, indeed I spent my university days trying to con myself that I could easily do without going to a three hour maritime law lecture because the tides were right for such and such a place (easy decision). I hear you all when it comes to justifying going fishing, believe me !! I got a degree in it.

Patrick rings me up from south east Ireland last night, and it goes something like this -

"Hi Henry, how's tricks ? No, not been guiding today, I had a day off".

"Nice one Pat, I bet you had a really boring day catching up on paperwork and doing emails etc."

"Ummmmmmm, not quite. You see, I have had a delivery of some new lures and I needed to go out fishing to see how they performed for my clients. I didn't really want to go out bass fishing, but I had to, purely for research purposes of course. And I by mistake managed to nail a couple of nice fish of 7lbs and 8lbs, product testing of course. And that new Tenryu Injection rod is something else as well."

"What a terrible day that must have been Pat. Going out product testing is a terrible thing to have to do. It must have been awful to have to have caught two such nice bass when all you wanted to do was see how the new lures performed in the water. I would far rather have done paperwork and emails."

"Product testing" is one of those all time classic excuses for nipping out fishing, and I actually think that Pat for a couple of seconds thought I might have fallen for it !! But I think he knew he was rumbled as soon as the word "swine" tumbled involuntarily from my mouth when he mentioned those two cracking bass. And here's one of them (swine !!). Book some fishing time with Pat here and you too can learn some new excuses for those times when you might need them.......he even has the new Tenryu Injection bass rod in stock, and if subtle fishing with soft plastics and light hard lures if your thing, make another excuse and "by mistake" purchase one.

Photo courtesy Patrick Gallagher

Anyway, onto more serious matters - thrash metal. Anybody into this form of music will I am sure have Megadeth's legendary album "Rust in Peace" in their mental list of top ten thrash metal albums of all time (along with Reign in Blood, Master of Puppets etc.). Hell, the song "Tornado of Souls" off that album is one of the best thrash tunes ever written - don't believe me ? Listen to it here and then bow down in worship. The problem with releasing such a good album is that it then becomes so hard to better it, indeed have Metallica for example ever come close to bettering "Master of Puppets" ? Let me answer that one for you - no, not even close. And don't give me any rubbish about the Black album being their best, because it quite clearly isn't. The new album called "Endgame" from Megadeth is very good, and it is growing on me with each listen - it is not "Rust in Peace", and it was never going to be, but it is fantastic, and if your head does not start banging up and down in pure reflex at those crunching riffs, then you need to go and see somebody. Listen to a few tracks off the new album here.

But I will tell you about the forthcoming metal release that I am seriously overexcited about, and I mean the kind of excitement that affects my sleep - the mighty and peerless Norwegian black metal band Immortal split up a few years back after releasing the seminal "Sons of Northern Darkness" album (without a doubt in my list of top ten black metal albums of all time). But they are back, and in a few days their new album comes out - mine has been on pre-order I think ever since it was announced. Any black metal nut is going to have a bunch of classic Immortal albums in their collection, and I can not tell you how much I am looking forward to spinning the new CD when it turns up like you would not believe. One of the truly great metal bands of our time.