Wednesday, June 30, 2004

Another edition of the One Piece column--like last time, I pick good songs off useless albums, in this case a pair of reissues. (There'd be more, but it was only a sidebar.) I'm going to be writing the column more frequently over the summer--it's gonna be roundups of various things, and there will be occasional guest columns as well, which should keep things lively (and get more music reviewed in the section as well). Good section overall--check out Nate Patrin moiderizing the new Beasties (by 1 p.m. we'd already gotten one letter to the editor: "The Beasties' latest effort is far from faultless, but, pleeeease, it's still a funky, funky collection in a rap world that often completely misses the funky train." Yes, and all mainstream rap is bling-bling blah blah zzzzzz), and Dave Queen on Rhino's new Fleetwood Mac Reissues.

Sunday, June 27, 2004

Nothing like ripping off another blog's appropriated meme to kickstart an ailing one of yr own, no? This one's from Kitty Power.

Act your age? Soemtimes a little too much. I certainly look more my age now that I've bleached my hair and kept a mustache/soul patch--or at least I think so.
Born on what day of the week? Tuesday, 18 February 1975
Chore you hate? Cleaning/organizing damn near anything
Dad’s name? Nick
Essential makeup item? Lipstick. NOT LIPLINER.
Favorite actor? Right now, probably George Clooney, though it should be noted I don't pay much attention to actors generally. (Nothing personal.)
Gold or silver? Both
Hometown? Minneapolis, Minnesota
Instruments you play? I used to think I could play rhythm guitar.
Job title? music editor
Kids? no
Living arrangements? basement unit of three-story house w/roommate
Mom’s name? Lorie
Need? the usual
Overnight hospital stays? never!
Phobias? driving
Quote you like? "The other thing that interests me about the Eagles is that I hate them."
Religious affiliation? few
Siblings? Two sisters aged 17 (Brittany) and 18 (Alex), the latter of whom is visiting me in August. We're both excited.
Time you wake up? I try to be up between 9 and 10 but it's usually a little later.
Unique talent? I apparently have a very good telephone voice.
Vegetable you refuse to eat? none I can think of offhand.
Worst habit? passive aggression
X-rays you’ve had? the most recent was for the Kid(ney stone).
Yummy food you make? nachos
Zodiac Sign? Aquarius, goddamn it.

Tuesday, June 22, 2004

I ask you, is Ingram's new step forward/backward the bloggerati's equivalent of John Wesley Harding or something? I can see it now: everyone embraces plain-text as primary mode of transmission! "It's a bit like ILM, innit, except w/o the hyperlinks or photos or . . ."

Tuesday, June 08, 2004

Peter S. Scholtes, I kiss you. (You too, David Corn. And yeah, why not, Tom Carson as well.)

I keep looking at Sasha's constantly updating and mutating 2004 best-of lists, and each time I am daunted, impressed, and revved up all at once. I've been talking with a couple friends about this year so far--it's a damn good year for albums, already. I'm finding lots of good ones; maybe not great ones, always, but that usually takes time anyway--the fourth quarter if you're being literal, repeated exposure and living with them if you're not. Sasha's lists are ultimate proof that for schmusic luvvahz, active listening is the antitode to the perceived blahs, but also in a more general way I do think the year's just been/is really good.

Since SFJ's lists do shift all the time I will simply note of his list-so-far that of the 89 albums he's got on there now (and he included the caveat about a month ago that "everything below 40 is just me keeping track," quoted freely), I have only myself heard 27, not counting the Nu-Mark mix, which I heard most of at a store recently, or the several discs I have but haven't played yet. Of the 41 singles, I'm familiar with a measly 12; it would've been 13 if he hadn't switched his vote for Ghostface & Jadakiss's "Run" from the regular version to the Pistol Pete remix. Obviously, I need to acquaint myself with a radio, which I'm hoping happens on my impending Minneapolis trip (leave there late Tuesday, overnight flight, arrive Wed., stay at the Days Inn near the U of M campus Wed-Thu nights, then w/the other double-M Fri-Sat, and fly back Sunday aft./evening.), or maybe when I get someone to make me a CD or whatever. The point, though, is that I'm digging this year's ear-products a lot and I'm not even hearing what, according to someone whose tastes I trust pretty well, are all the good ones. So I think that bodes well.

The other thing is that I do find it difficult to keep "official" track of albums these days, partly because I'm disorganized, partly because as per my year-end mix-thing, I've been keeping track of individual songs, one per artist (and a maximum, I've decided, of three per compilation) gearing up for what I'm expecting to be two MP3 CD-Rs worth of new stuff and a third of reissued material. This means I'm not keeping track of albums or singles, per se; you could argue that I'm wrong about the latter, since anything can be a single now (and Pazz & Jop allows you to vote for whatever tracks you want to--they prefer "focus tracks," but they don't disqualify your ballot if you don't pick them), but I sort of doubt "I Love You Golden Blue" or "Send Me Shivers" or "Slammin' Ragga Bootleg Track"* are going to be "singles" in even that sense, but on they go. Then again, Sasha has the advantage of being on Abstract Dynamics, where you can tweak and link separately individual entries, which Blogspot doesn't do; maybe I'll just start a separate blog to do my albums lists in a similar fashion. Because unlike last year, when I was swamped w/work (wrote a book, y'know) and life (moved x-country and started a new job, y'know), this year I'm settled enough to be able to keep real track of albums instead of pulling together a top ten, just barely.

Anyway: musically, a good year, so far. I hope it keeps going like this.

*Sonic Youth, Mouse on Mars, and Kid606, respectively.

Thursday, June 03, 2004

Thing worth noting: Fleetwood Mac's "Brown Eyes" and Brian Eno's "Sky Saw" have almost the exact same drumming. Both are on CDs--Tusk and Another Green World--that have just been reissued. This does not seem like a coincidence.

The new column, in which I isolate songs I like from albums I don't--something I'm hoping to do regularly in the future.