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iPod Shuffle2 - Funghi [Grappenhall Heys Puffball mushrooms, England, UK]

iPod Shuffle2 - Funghi [Grappenhall Heys Puffball mushrooms, England, UK]
Punishment Of Luxury - Funghi - Play this track here.

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'Secrets' was the first Punilux track I came across. I still have the 7" vinyl in my loft as well as the excellent 'Puppet Life'. They took their name from an 1891 painting by Giovanni Segantini in the Walker Art Gallery, Liverpool.

Punishment of Luxury, also known as Punilux, are a four-man post-punk band from Newcastle, England, who were active in the late 1970s and early 1980s. They released an excellent album 'Laughing Academy' on UA (United Artists), and another on Red Rhino Records. They reformed in the late 1980s and again in 2007.

From a background working in left-wing English fringe theatre groups, Punishment Of Luxury were a four-man post-punk band formed in December 1976 in Newcastle. The band consisted initially of Brian Bond (born Brian Rapkin - vocals), Neville Luxury (born Neville Atkinson - guitar, vocals), Red Helmet (guitar, vocals), Jimi Giro (bass guitar, vocals), and "Liquid" Les Denham (drums).

They released a single, "Puppet Life" on the Small Wonder label in July 1978. In 1979 they signed to United Artists and released the singles "Engine Of Excess" and "Secrets", and the album Laughing Academy. 1980 saw the release of the single "Laughing Academy". An extensive European tour followed and United Artists sent the band into the studio to record another album, a concept album to be called Gigantic Days. However while the recording was still going on, United Artists were taken over by EMI, who dropped the band.

Neville, Bond, and Giro recruited guitarists Steve Sekrit (born Steven Robson) and Tim Magenta to a new lineup, now going by the name Punilux. They released a further album on the Red Rhino label, 7 in 1983, with Magenta replaced by Rab Aitch, before Neville Luxury went solo, releasing the mini-album Feels Like Dancing Wartime in 1984. The album Gigantic Days was finally released, on CD, in 1998 by Overground Records.

The albums are tricky to track down, but worth the effort.

The distinguishing feature of all puffballs is that they do not have an open cap with spore-bearing gills. Instead, spores are produced internally, in a spheroidal fruiting body called a gasterothecium (gasteroid ('stomach-like') basidiocarp). As the spores mature, they form a mass called a gleba in the centre of the fruiting body that is often of a distinctive color and texture.

The basidiocarp remains closed until after the spores have been released from the basidia. Eventually, it develops an aperture, or dries, becomes brittle, and splits, and the spores escape. The spores of puffballs are statismospores rather than ballistospores, meaning they are not actively shot off the basidium.

The fungi are called 'puffballs' because clouds of brown dust-like spores are emitted when the mature fruiting body bursts, or in response to impacts such as those of falling raindrops. Puffballs and similar forms are thought to have evolved repeatedly (that is, in numerous independent events) from hymenomycetes by gasteromycetation, through secotioid stages.

Thus, 'Gasteromycetes' and 'Gasteromycetidae' are now considered to be descriptive, morphological terms (more properly gasteroid or gasteromycetes, to avoid taxonomic implications) but not valid cladistic terms.

These two were spotted in an autumnal wood, near plenty of decaying leaves and branches.

While most puffballs are not poisonous, some often look similar to young agarics, especially the deadly Amanitas, such as the Death Cap mushroom. It is for this reason that all puffballs gathered in mushroom hunting should be cut in half

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