Monthly Archives: January 2008

Whelmed

Oh, this Michel Gondry thing is just great. It’s actually a little bit better because he’s french, right?

Also, here are some Rules from a Texan, i.e. Lyle Lovett, on how to be more of a gentleman. The picture of him grinning with his horse is currently on my desktop. That grin! It’s great.

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Beulah!

Band that you may have forgotten about/never gotten into: Beulah. Utilize that emusic 50 songs free deal and download every song. It’s worth it. (Besides, I’m pretty sure the cds are out of print. Thanks emusic!) Sublime pop music with cranky neurotics at the forefront. The song I’m currently enjoying most, “Popular Mechanics For Lovers” has a great little lyric and Magnetic Fields shout out: “I heard he wrote you a song/ but so what? Some guy wrote 69 and 1 just ain’t enough/and there’s no sense even trying…but all I ever find my love are cliches that don’t rhyme”

then, some glorious oooh-oooh-ooohs. SIGH.

Also, do check out the song “Hey Brother.” It makes me happy because it reminds me of Arrested Development, and the lyric: “you had no choice, you’re moving back east where men are men”

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My New Favorite Writer

Lou Lerman lives in Park Slope with his wife, Myra and his dog, Whiskers. His forthcoming 2009 novel, Penny Arcade Heart, is the searing tale of a sect of Wisconsin Jews in the 1930s and their struggle to open up the titular arcade. When he’s not running his literary journal, Leika’s Space Capades, with his comrades, he is working on a comic book series of detective stories about the owner of a bodega. He blogs at Loulermansworld.org. He is unnaturally obsessed with 18th century spoonware from Greece.

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Idolator ballot adjustment

Eleni Mandell

I forgot to put Eleni Mandell’s lovely, romantic “Miracle of Five” on my list of albums. I will freely admit I wrote out my idolator ballot very quickly since it was distracting me away from more useful pursuits.

Eleni Mandell has a great voice and I think that this is her best album yet. I wish I wrote for fashion magazines so I could put her in there–she’s such a woman, a woman out of old films and noir, a dame and that kind of style should be celebrated. I feel awfully girlish a good percentage of the time. I really admire women who carry themselves as women; I see it less and less in my generation.

This album is totally recommended for a sexy wine dinner with the one you love.  Montreal friends, she’s playing in Quebec constantly.  Go see her.

Also, if I was wholly thinking, I probably would’ve included “We Used To Vacation” by the Cold War Kids since the guy singing in that band has a strange voice. It’s not so…manly, either. It’s one of those songs I heard in a coffee shop and hunted down.

Carl Wilson of Zoilus, you know, I think our ideal singles ballot is very similar. Keep on fighting the good fight!

While I’m talking about music, I wanted to reiterate that it feels really good to have Shearwater’s reissue of Palo Santo on Matador on the list at number one. Several reasons apply. First, it’s too new of an album (with re-recorded songs) to fall under the category of “reissue,” which is for albums that are over 5 years old. Secondly, it’s nice to mention Shearwater. More people should listen to them. I like what the re-recording and remastering did to the songs. Took them out of the low-fi murk. It’s still transcendent work. I’m pretty sure I’ll be listening to the album when I’m a lot older. It’s classic!

It felt sort of nice to leave the Spoon album off the list. I like them, but I think that Britt Daniel’s lyrics are getting actively stupid lately. I don’t know why that is. “Eddie’s Ragga” and “Black Like Me” are total jams but I really get stuck on the “she said it’s hopeless I’m a slut for the New York Times,” or scene, or whatever it is. I don’t know. In some ways, “Black Like Me” is kind of classic, once it gets to that glorious part of “all the weird kids up front-YEAH!-tell me what you’re going to want (or whatever the garble is) -AW YEAH!” but then the song just ends. It kills me. I’d like to hear a lengthy version. I suspect there’s an epic song in there somewhere. That man is joie ladie personified.

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Resolve, Resolved, Resolute, Resolution

The new year brings with it a lot of change. I would say, sadly, that my website doesn’t currently reflect the branding possibilities that I have as a writer. That’s okay with me. I don’t know if that’s okay with me on a capitalist level, however. A goal is to get some dot something running soon.

I know that one thing I want to do this year is to focus on learning new things. I’m downloading some free course material off the MIT website. It’s going to be great.

For now, I’m going to spend a little less time on the internet. Thanks to a boring part-time job (that is now over!) I developed some bad habits, bad fascinations with certain websites that are entirely past their prime, and hey, there’s a great big world out there beyond my computer. My god, I may even journal in a notebook! (Ha, I found I had no reason to write in a daily journal once I started making out with boys.)

I don’t have much current motivation to be a regular, dependable blogger. Which is a shame, since I’d love to parlay it into a job opportunity, but I have a lot to focus on right now. Step one is learning to sleep at night. My inner clock’s screwed up and I’m becoming a raging insomniac. It sucks.

Subjects that I would like to talk about at some point: the girl-fight music of The Long Blondes (which is a major part of me not enjoying them as much as I feel I should on paper), a spirited defense of Liz Phair 2004. Maybe.

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