has some enterprising kidling made a track yet, a la Matmos or somebody, where all the beast are/are made of the modem blips from bad song downloads? Like, sampled and used for beats. Fry minds, dude.
Monday, August 31, 2009
Friday, August 28, 2009
I like when our vet Dr Thorn calls the cats "kids", as in "this kid..." [gestures]...I'm happy for Tarantino that Inglourious Basterds was so well-received and I'd love to see it, except it's not playing in our apartment...it always bugged me when Select magazine raved early on about Oasis talking about their 'perfect three-minutes pop singles' when all of their songs were four and a half minutes at the shortest...try some fresh lemon juice on your tomatoes with some salt...do you remember paying for records? It really happened!...Has no one told Don DeLillo that his name is an anagram of llone dildo?...Speaking, temporarily halting a re-read of Underworld for a tear through Floating Dragon, a book that always conjures that late-summer Sunday in 1982 feeling for me, and, likely for you...if I get the Les Paul/Chet Atkins album Lester and Chester, would I ever actually listen to it?...scallops with corn sauce tomorrow night, chez Gabe...I always thought Erik Skodis was the bass player for Imperial Drag; turns out he was the drummer...baby, that's not Lake Minnetonka.
Thursday, August 27, 2009
Hey! Esquire has not asked me to do their What I've Learned column/thing, since this blog is now officially the Third Most Popular World Web Site on The Bride's Laptop! Herewith:
* There's no such thing as weird food. If you're too dumb to like good stuff, too bad. You'll get plenty of 'cheesy bread' in hell.
* I don't try on clothes in stores. I just hold it up to me. Sometimes this
works. Also, dress like you did as a college sophomore, forever. I also don't
really know what size shoes I wear, officially.
* I thought, once upon a time, that blogging away in a style
self-consciously hybridized from Nichoson Baker's U & I and the
more upbeat portions of Lester Bangs's oeuvre would end up equaling big bucks.
* If I don't know how something works, I say so.
* If I could get some mildly debilitating illness where I could still be
paid but would just get to read all day - well, I could live with
* Is it wrong to want to go to a Hallowe'en party as Bubble from Absolutely
* They can tell when you're drunk.
* Cats are better than most people by some measure.
* I like change. Not life changes, but actual jingly coin change.
* When I was a kid, I walked around the corner of Heidi Grey's house and
got hit in the face with a lawn dart, aka Jart. Right in the corner of my eye -
just missed having the eye put out. If I had walked a little harder around the
corner, and into two Jarts, this blog would be in braille. Or read
aloud in a Steve Hawking voice.
* Canada's okay with me.
* I don't give a damn that Dave Grohl sings songs to his kid(s?) at night.
Does he care that I call my cats whores?
* I don't care what's in your medicine cabinet. Your condiments in the
* Debt's a killer, but I don't care. Someone will die and all will be well.
* I would not trade places with anybody.
I have tried reading A Confederacy of Dunces many times, and always with the same result: I read ten pages, say "Wow, I really hate this!" and put it away again for a couple of years until the urge (similar in feeling to boredom) creeps up again. One reason I have always shunned it is the loathesome nature of those who champion it [and you can probably tell from my Ignatius-style dictum there that I have in fact now read it] - I knew guys in my college years who were in the more hippie/Black Crowes-sorta frats who would tell you it was the greatest thing ever written, maaan, and just the idea of it eventually came to generally gave me a chill like, I dunno, the thought of Zen and The Art of Motorcycle Maintenance.
SO, I picked it up recently and was surprised to find it quite fun, funny and generally quirky in a good way, if in need of a serious chopping-down or nine. Was shocked!
Then I realized something I think of a lot, but rarely talk about: sometimes a font will put me off a book. The early 90s trade paperback with the cartoon Ignatius and the light blue background was the one I had always tried before, but this time, a chunky Barnes and Noble-style hardback edition turned the trick (and I wonder if the weird publisher name on the spine which now escapes me - the book is at home - is, like Levy Pants, a small place that does nothing all day except tend to its once-every-so-often publishing of this book, like those rumored town/villages in Germany at the advent of CD technology wear the only industry was supposedly the manufacturing of Dark Side of the Moons). To me, the whole tone of the story changed with the change in type!
Do you know this feeling?
Whilst I grouse re: matters Pitchfork, the most annoying music-meme going is the preponderance of acts that offer up their giveaway MP3's and the very next sentence is: "...will be featured on their upcoming cassette-only release 'Way of the Nightlamb' [or whatever]."
The fetishization of vinyl records has obvs reached its hipster zenith, when USB-equipped turntables are now available at your local Circle K. So the kids, born in the 80's, naturally want to objectify some radically obstuse obsolete technology of their own. Fair enough! Except: cassettes suck, inherently. The need to rewind, the potential for damage, the drop-out phenomenon...just all sorts of drawbacks. Plus, since "they" have stopped making cassette tape, pretty much, but for the supplying of idiot kids still trying to make their own Bee Thousand on weekends at their step-dad's, the cassette micro-trend lends itself to a wilful shitness by its very nature, since most of the crap going on the newly-manufactured-but-unnecessary tape isn't worth hearing in the end, anyway.
Why I'm almost 60 years old and know anything about this fad is the pathetic part, yes.
All those 10+++!!!+ZOMG!! reviews for Radiohead reissues over at Pitchfork can so kiss my grits. My take on Radiohead is: great through OK Computer, they are free to do what they want even if it's tripe, should have done one more LP of song songs before losing the plot...you know, the usual. That new quasi-instrumental "These Are My Twisted Words," I'm fairly sure, is cribbed from a shitty jam my friends and I had in our Stewart St. bunker ca. 1997. The "...Harry Patch" thing is an old Montovani track with Thom singing over the top on his first hearing of accompanying music.
Then you have Muse, who have oft been derided for singer Matt's admittedly very Yorke-y vocal stylings. And, yes, they do tend toward bombastic proggy shit, sometimes veering close to Guitar-Shoppe twaddle. The a-holes at Pitchfork snarkily give new Muse song "United States of Eurasia" a 2.6 or whatever. And it IS stupid, to a great degree. The "deep" lyrics, the embarrassing-yet-awesome Queen rips...dumb. Then the tacked-on piano solo, all Chopin-y, is silly, yet...beautiful. There, I said it. Plus it reminds me of "Claire du Lune."
So, yes, Muse deserves credit for writing actual songs.
I've had Muse v. Radiohead on my to-write list for about three weeks. I had a lot more to say about this, but stopped caring about 100 words ago. Did you notice?
Have enterprising adult-film entrepreneurs made a flick yet set at Fox News? As has been commented on (everywhere), the Fox News ladies mostly already look like 1995-era adult film actresses. So, they should get Ron Jeremy in to play "Bill O'Really" and just get the masses really riled.
1.) Guaranteed press! Tons of it!
2.) The name is a given/cakewalk (see above)
3.) sales through the roof to both sardonic hat-wearing frat rats AND repressed Xtians!
Make it real!
(plus, coincidentally, this is post # soixante-neuf for the month! Providence!)
All sympathy to the family of Ted Kenneally or whoever, but Dominick Dunne died! Bummer.
Now who can wear dress shorts with a blazer like that? Besides me, if the Bride is out of town.
Plus he was JDid's brother-in-law. Maybe she will be coaxed into an encomium for the inevitable Vanity Fair tribute. So there's that.
Wednesday, August 26, 2009
No, not that Andy - the Easy Andy the Gun Salesman Guy from Taxi Driver!
"That's a nice little gun..."
This dude ruled. He basically invented both the personal styles of Wes Anderson and Beck.
Then I see that Martin Scorcese was making a documentary about him called American Boy (his name is Stephen Prince) back in the 70's, but the movie languished unfinished or something. I dunno, gotta do more research. It exists, the movie - it's done. It's on youtube! Oh! Addict stuff! Also: he was a road manager for Neil Diamond! Oy!
That this guy isn't super-famous is a tragedy! He should at least be playing Harlan Ellison in a bio-pic!Anyway, he rules.
Tuesday, August 25, 2009
YES! While the first Noisettes album fairly blows (songs way too busy, too much distortion, had not yet arrived at "style," general lacking in Trevor Horn-ish suavitude), as I feared would be the case, it nevertheless did not change my opinion of the new LP or the band as a whole! Rah!
I have to say I appreciate all of your kind thoughts during this time.
This news that Michael Jackson was murdered* comes across, then this:
Yes, someone is making a line of crap named after Holden Caulfield, and the sick fact is I sort of need this thing (jersey?) pictured! Sort of! It's JERESY! Wear it to confuse the proles, as with my 1989 New Order rainbow US flag shirt! Except, when and if I ever meet some real people in this, they will guffaw and tut and call me a dick/sartorial scofflaw!
Then it turns out this avatar picture which I see on a fave band of mine's discussion board all the time
is not some random Bruce Weber shot from 1994 at all, but rather a shot of Country Joe from Country Joe and the Fish, taken at the 1967 Monterey Pop Festival! This rankles because the Bride and I have an acquaintance who sort of sucks and is given to wearing workin' [sic] man overalls whom we refer to as "Country Joe." But if Country Joe was actually a bit of posh tottie, isn't everything upside down? Does this loser we know need a new nickname? Shit!
[hat tip on Caulfield thing: Wynn]
* as my brother says "Follow the money." Or, as Glenn McDonald says "Who profits from your fears?"
I've groused previously about how many pickles constitute "extra," so I won't continue that particular line of quixotic ranting.
But, how do you CHECK on positioning of pickles? Everyone knows that the bites with pickles are the best, so they should be saved for last, just as when eating a bowl of Trix as a child the red "berries" should be carefully left for last, as we all surely did. What, you didn't? FUCK YOU!
Anyway, I propose lifting the lid. Taking the top bun off your sandwich, then arranging pickles in a way so that you get the maximum pickleness for your sammich ducat. It's an inexpensive solution to one of the most vexing problems facing mankind.
(feel free to do that FAIL lettering over this picture, in observance of pickle dearth)
Wait - one is from 1998, I think. Whatever, man. Whatever.
Back before they went all Zach Braff-y, Massachusetts misanthropes Wheat released the amazing Medeiros. YOU need this. "Death Car" came on random this morning. Wait! Just realized I don't have the whole thing on my external hard drive...so I guess we ALL need this. Sorta slow, grinding dramatic songs. "Hey kid, it's summer again/grow your hair and let your muscles show through...you've been sleeping all summer long/smoking pot with your traintrack friends..." EPIC!
Then another friend asked me if I'd heard the second Monaco record (there was one!) from 2000. Um, no. So I dutifully got this, and actually laughed out loud, which is rare for me, at track three ("Kashmere"), when singer David Potts's faux Sumner-isms hit such a fever pitch that for a minute I was sure that I was NO keyboardist Gillian Gilbert. Or something. If the afore-written sentence makes sense to you , read on: this is the best New Order album since Technique. Or maybe it's the sequel to the good songs on Electronic's "Raise the Pressure." Whatever the hell, it's a total bonus in that it's quite good but doesn't need to exist at all. This album cover with the two of them in some womb-y, ambient future Manchester is brilliantly shit as well.
I also love this picture for singer Potts in his seeming junior-high music class:
See, I liked Elliott Smith quite a bit through X/O, but I hated Figure 8, because it had no songs on it. But it was one of those cases where a new release by someone tainted my entire opinion (at the time, anyway - I since nod appreciatively when I hear one of his songs) of all that came before: "Hmmf - maybe he wasn't any great shakes after all!"
Now I stand at a similar precipice - I love the new Noisettes record more than I can say. So I dutifully acquired their previous album (at left), as I must in my Weird Completists' Union way (I can show you my card). Now it sits, waiting to be played and I'm scared to death I won't like it and that it will besmirch my boundary-breaking all-pure love for the LP that I'm obsessed about. Or it could be great?
So, as I say, NERVOUS. Hope to have this cleared up by the end of the day. If you happen past a church, stop in and say a prayer for your humble blogger. This could be the toughest day of my life.
Thursday, August 20, 2009
Back in 1997, my then-band was tapped to open for the local "alt"-rock outlet's festival doodad, with its requisite pile of then-relevant but stylistically disparate acts. One thing that was nice was that Veruca Salt played and Cory and I were into different ladies of same (hello, Nina!) and so, if a bomber (see below) were to come and bomb nearby WPAFB, we could then each repopulate the planet with the Veruca Salt of our choosing.
I forget who else was playing...Matthew Sweet, maybe? K's Choice (!)?
One of the other bands was a unit of four just-out-of-high-school kids called Kara's Flowers, who had been scooped up in the mid-90's frenzy to Build an Alternative Nation. The singer (and maybe more of them?) went on to form the fairly loathesome cougar-bar stalwarts Maroon 5.
Why I don't wish them dead, as I promised, is because during their soundcheck, their guitarist stage-left had a quick run through the main riff of "Tonight," off Supergrass's then-newish In It for the Money. My bandmates and friends looked at each other in drunken recognition that these guys were well sussed and I look at the rest of their poppy set with something close to approbation.
So, as whatever their big hit as M5 was (name seriously escapes me at the moment - "Love Slink"...[no - "This Love"]) blasts the lunchtime crowd at your local CJ Fuckbuddy's, the band are somewhere else, blissfully unaware at how close they came to axe of my death-benison falling on their collective head.
What? You know nothing about Tsar Bomba, the biggest nuclear device ever set off?
You know all these gizmos like Blackberries and iPhones? Forget them, because what's totes hot is the PENCIL!
I make lists compulsively, so am constantly scratching out stuff to do that's been done/adding new stuff to do, or making a change in my mega-strict self-budgeting and my sheets of 8.5x11 end up looking like the chicken-scratchy ramblings of a madman. The other day there were three nicely sharpened #2 pencils on the dining room table that the Bride had for some reason, so I made off with one and there is no going back! When you make a mistake or wish to change something you've written, you can erase it. It's NUTS!
I wonder - do "they" still make those erasable ballpoints? I remember when those were the shit-hot new thing, and I remember the ink's ginger ale-like smell. But they may be gone?
Anyway, PENCILS! Whether you get them at the store or order some $15-for-three set from Jack Spade (with "witty" engraving on the side such as 'INFALLABLE', probs), they are HOT!
No, not Janice Springer et famille, this is about some band from Indiana in the early 80's, maybe?
Anyway, came across this weird record on some blog or other, and it's a very strange, sorta-punk/sorta-Sparks mishmash, but very smart. Also, sort of Gang of Four scratchy guitars all over the place.
But what I really love is the cover (of course):
My college cronies and I rented Uncle Buck and kept it so long the police had to come get it back (I think that's what happened - small town!). Herewith, the top five things I still say all the time from the movie, if only in my head during the "quiet times" [?]:
5. "Mmkay, buh-bye, hon." [hanging up phone]
4. "Let go of my arm, goddammit!"
3. "Been eating a lot of cheese lately..."
2. "If that's true, we're really going to have to start brushing our
1. "Least I'm learning a trade!"/"Will do, chickie." [tie]
Wednesday, August 19, 2009
It's painful for me to admit (again - I think I posted on this same topic in January or so) with all the constant deification from all quarters, but Joan Didion's essays really are fantastic and tough as nails.
It was a spotty case, and to make it work at all the State was going to have to
find a motive. There was talk of unhappines, talk of another man.
That kind of motive, during the next few weeks, was what they set out to
establish. They set out to find it in accountants' ledgers and
double-indemnity clauses and motel registers, set out to determine what might
move a woman who believed in all the promises of the middle class - a woman who
had been chairman of the Heart Fund and who always knew a reasonable little
dressmaker - and who had come out of the bleak wild of prairie fundamentalism to
find out what she imagined to be the good life - what would drive such a woman
to sit on a street called Belle Vista and look out her new picture window in to
the empty California sun and burn her husband alive in a Volkswagen.
Shit like that!
Plus, I totally caught Bret Easton Ellis out at exact lines swiped and stuck in Less Than Zero. Dumb! Hence his saying in the August 1994 Vanity Fair "I have Thanksgiving now with Joan Didion and her husband and it's, y'know, alright." [paraphrase].
Also, BEE says that his sequel to Less Than Zero is done and that Julian is "fragile, but sober."
But who isn't, Bret?
Monday, August 17, 2009
Here is the cover of the new only-at-Walmart KISS album!:
And here are the track titles, and what speculative early word says they may contain/be about:
1.) Modern Day Delilah - is Gene's sexy wig tech (there has to be one!) putting saltpeter in his oats, or is it just age?
2.) Russian Roulette - a metaphor for how every KISS fan is taking his/her life in their hands every time they buy any record post-1980! In SONG!
3.) Never Enough - A cover of the 1990 Cure song!
4.) Yes, I Know (Nobody's Perfect) - Gene makes it up to Shannon in this "I love you, babe" number. Cue strings!
5.) Stand - A hat-tip to those roadies who manage to get Gene'n'Paul upright every damn night! Excuse me, "nite!"
6.) Hot and Cold - Sample lyric: "Girl, your love goes hot and cold/rock and roll will never get old." Probably!
7.) All the Glory - You know, these guys have been at it since the early seventies, but all the glory is yours, the fans. You know it is! So hold your head high as you deliver that Papa John's!
8.) Danger Us - a think-piece of a number about how the erosion of personal freedom has lead to a realization that, in many ways, we have become our own worst enemies. With verse about the Rosenbergs!
9.) I'm An Animal - New "Ace" Tommy Thayer steps up and hits it out of the park with this mini-rock opera (tm) in four minutes and forty seconds, wherein he tells the whole story of Mark St John's brief tenure as New "Ace" circa the 80's KISS LP "Animalize." "Yeah, my hand's swelled awful big/but I got somethin' bigger..."
10.) When Lightning Strikes - new Catman Eric Singer (almost typed Eric Carmen!) does the "Beth" thing right with this show-stopping ballad with "boating safety" theme!
11). Say Yah - closest to my heart, the superstars finally address that whole "yeah = yes/yay! = hooray/yah = ja or 'yes' in German" issue that haunts my thoughts and dreams. I hear there's also a bonus track called "(Use Your Goddam) Turn Signal." Maybe not, but I can dream, and dream big, just like Gene, Paul and KISS!
Get out and get this Oct 6 at Walmart while you're buying your Dr Thunder and some lettuce!
A challenge to our [?] readership: this coming weekend, get on youtube and watch a whole season of Footballers' Wive$.*
Then try to not cop the following lingual tics from the men and women thereon:
Men: mushmouth cockney, which will have you saying "Will you go wiv me to the grocery?"
Women: an over-affected Northern accent, as in "It's all going to be allreet!"
Also, just try not to realize that Tanya Turner, as played by the amazing Zoe Lucker, IS THE MOST POWERFUL WOMAN WHO EVER LIVED!
As I say, try this! And GOOD LUCK!
* Yes, the dollar sign is in the logo. But should not the l's be pound symbols? Or, hotter, should it not have started that way (pounds), andthen, by season 5 (2006), the "e" in Footballers' - should it not have been a euro symbol? And if I ever manage to break into some super-secret gubmint facility in the Adirondacks where time travel is being perfected, should I not go back in time and fix these errors, on behalf of YOU, the aggrieved?
Just got my tire replaced, finally, after last week's near-disaster. Tried to get it done Friday at a mom-n-pop shithole recommended by two fine individuals. Sadly, they didn't have the right tire for my Swedish travesty of a car. I grinned sheepishly and shuffled my feet in the presence of two Real Dudes who would snap my neck for bein' a pussy. As I was leaving, I noticed the shorter of the two had a done-with-a-compass, maybe-and-ink neck "design" that read:
Bring on the H1N1!
These Russian maniacs called, wait, lemme look, PTVP, have the straight-out-the-pig-iron-smelter cojones to call Putin a "dictator." Dude in the glasses also bravely flaunts a 2003-ish electroclash stylee, but I digress!
Here are some lyrics!
Don't listen to anything/
he always lies to you!/
Putin! Putin! Putin!
A pig will find filth anywhere!
Awright! Doesn't really rhyme or anything, but neither did "the Cambridge Ladies."
Plus their name is not Russian for HPV, as you assumed. It's an acronym for Last Tanks in Paris, which is shit-hot!
I've completely changed my opinion on these cats since I started typing this! Mail them a copy of Frankenchrist before it's too late!
(my 82-year old mom, sitting waiting for doctor's appointment, while watching a story on the troubles of Rick Pitino on CNN whatever with Robin Meade [Headline News?]):
Oh...he had a ho!
This sort of competes with when I was asked, ca. 1998, "What is a booty call?"