Saturday, January 30, 2010

Got Some

Friday, January 29, 2010

Expecting Snow

it hardly ever delivers though! maybe this weekend is different...

Friday listening:

Various Artists - African Boogaloo
Buffalo Tom - Let Me Come Over
Eddy Current Suppression Ring - Primary Colours
Billy Sugarfix - King of the Drama Kings
Wilson Pickett - The Definitive Collection
Various Artists - Stroke (nice Pitchfork review today!)
Ryan Gustafson - Donkey
Elvis Costello & The Attractions - Live at Hollywood High

Pretty Fascinating

Obama taking questions live at House GOP Conference.
Obama: "I'm having fun!" Not sure about that, but he's responding in a reality-based way on GOP talking points like tort reform, some good stuff.
"There has to be some test of realism in any of these proposals. I've actually read your bills."
Too nice for Fox News, they cut away early!
GOP trying to spin themselves as having offered "many ideas." Not sounding convincing.
Nice bust on Frank Luntz at the end...
Wish they did this more often!

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Eno Interview

i wish there were more Brian Eno interviews. he's as smart and funny and unique as you think he'd's a good one from last week in the Guardian. a couple highlights...

on acoustic guitars: "If you were sitting down now to design an instrument you would not dream of coming up with something as ridiculous as an acoustic guitar. It's a strange instrument, it's very limited and it doesn't sound good."
on Frank Zappa: "Zappa was important to me because I realised I didn't have to make music like he did"
good stuff! not sure i agree with this though:
"Recorded music equals whale blubber. Eventually, something else will replace it."

In Merge world, Spoon has the #4 album in the country! They played an "in-store" (actually in the parking lot) at one of the nation's finest record stores, Waterloo, to 2,000 people on Monday.
And speaking of Eno, there's a great new Caribou track you can hear which reminds me of Arthur Russell and also a bit of Eno's work with the Talking Heads...check out "Odessa." (new album Swim out in May)

Monday, January 25, 2010

Grtst Hitz

usually if i like a band i just want to get their albums and not so much a "greatest hits" collection though that's sometimes how it all starts....still, the tracklisting on the Pavement greatest hits album Quarantine the Past: the Best of Pavement looks amazing, i want to listen to it right now!
gives me a nice blueprint to create my own Pavement best-of from the records...

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

'Fork on EP

Pitchfork weighs in on the most recent Portastatic EP... i'm sure when she's older our daughter will thrill to the olde tales of her first numbered rating of a 7.8...

As for the embarrassing MA-Sen loss and the Democrats' failure to do anything with our without the 60-vote majority, Kos put it well:

"Given last year's track record in the Senate, it certainly can't make the Senate any less effective."


Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Let Freedom Ring

The White House says it's "surprised and frustrated" at how cloes the MA-Sen race kidding, how about how "surprised and frustrated" progressives around the country are with the administration itself? If Coakley loses it will just be another in a long list of embarassing Dem disappointments this year, which may be why they have had trouble mobilizing Democrats nationwide and in MA to get behind Coakley in this race. Maybe she'll pull it out but no one seems to be predicting that....

Tuesday listening:

Chuck Prophet - Let Freedom Ring!
(another great album in a long line of them)
Philip Glass - Music With Changing Parts
Amadou & Mariam - Tje Ni Mousso
King Sunny Ade - Juju Music
Eddie & Ernie - Lost Friends
Teddy Pendergrass - Teddy Pendergrass

Monday, January 18, 2010

Friday, January 15, 2010

Friday Listening

Jay Reatard - Blood Visions
Go-Betweens - Liberty Belle and the Black Diamond Express
XTC - Mummer
Gossip - Movement
The Minus 5 - Killlingsworth
Jimmy Webb - Archive
Cold Cave - Love Comes Close
Spoon - Transference

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Help Haiti Pt 2

Not so shockingly (unfortunately) many credit card companies are raking it in with fees they charge every time you donate money to a cause like earthquake victim relief efforts. if you're giving to Oxfam, Doctors Without Borders, Partners In Health, or another aid agency via credit card, you'd do best to use Capital One's No Hassle Giving program, and Huffington Post says American Express are now rebating those fees back to the charities but i can't find confirmation of that.

UPDATE: Visa, MasterCard, AmEx and Discover have all announced they're waiving fees for these donations.

Jay Reatard, Teddy Pendergrass, Rowland S. Howard, RIP

Any individual loss seems small compared to the kind of mass human devastation they're seeing in Haiti right now, but over the last couple weeks we have lost some important music figures of different eras (Willie Mitchell already noted below), the most shocking of which has to be the death yesterday of Memphis native Jay Reatard at the age of 29. he had already created a considerable body of work but his drive also was so evident and his music so electric and, well, alive, that his death just seems unreal. the juvenile stage name belied a seriousness and depth to the songwriting and the fury involved in his records. Really sad.

Teddy Pendergrass made classic Philly soul records with Harold Melvin and the Blue Notes produced by the Gamble & Huff braintrust. Check this performance from '73. My favorite is Wake Up Everybody, an amazing album. He continued to make music after suffering a spinal cord injury in a car accident in 1982 that paralyzed him from the waist down. Colon cancer killed Pendergrass at 59.

Going back a few weeks and lost a bit in the holiday/new years news cycle, we lost Rowland S. Howard, guitarist with two of my favorite bands - The Birthday Party and later the underrated Crime and the City Solution and on a couple fantastic Jacobites records too. His style was unique and many including myself tried to understand and replicate what he was doing (luckily i stopped trying early on) on the guitar...he created space and dread in a way that punk rock really hadn't up to that point. Howard had a sound and a look, and a presence, that is one of the more unique and influential of the 1980's music world (at least the one i was living in).
Nice tribute here from Everett True.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Help Haiti

Partners In Health has done major work in Haiti in the past and would be a good place to send your money in terms of having confidence that they know where it's needed the most.

HERE is the link to do just that.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Basement Dwelling

Rough year for the 'Canes, and they currently reside in the basement not of their division or conference, but of the entire NHL. So a 3-game win streak (first of the season) is a big deal and they got that tonight when they beat the Leafs in Toronto. Ward made some great stops in the process. What's odd about the 'Canes is that some of their precious few wins have come against the strength of the conference - at Pittsburgh and Washington, for instance. One small silver lining in this sad and injury-plagued season is that we get to see a lot of young guys brought up from Albany and playing their asses off, which is a fun look at the future of the team.

Listening while listening to Chuck Kaiton:

Eddie and Ernie - Lost Friends
Buddy DeFranco and Oscar Peterson Play George Gershwin
Fantastic Mr. Fox Original Soundtrack
Bill Evans - Moonbeams
John Coltrane - Ballads
Ryuichi Sakamoto - Out of Noise

Thursday, January 07, 2010

Me and The King

the fantastic and hilarious MBV blog has posted an mp3 of the Destroyer cover from the most recent Portastatic EP. please visit them to see an excellent graphic they've created.

Wednesday, January 06, 2010

Willie Mitchell 1928-2010

Memphis legend Willie Mitchell produced some of the best, best-sounding, most timeless soul records, greatest records, period, for Al Green of course but other Hi Records artists as well like Syl Johnson and Ann Peebles. Green's recent albums where he reunited with Mitchell showed that the producer had not lost his touch nor his studio its magic.

Friday, January 01, 2010

Happy Y2K10!

i wish i had more time to go into some other stuff not on my year-end music list that were exciting in 2009 -- Ponyo, the Wayne White book, meeting Carole King, late night meals at the Ssam Bar, A Serious Man, The Rubell Family Collection in Miami, debuts by NC writers Wells Tower and Nic Brown, drawings of Will Yackulic, Pipilotti Rist: Pour Your Body Out, freezing at the inauguration of our 44th President, finishing and getting the Our Noise book out, and getting to work with all of the musicians and curators involved with the SCORE! box set all year long... and lots more -- but here we are in 2010 already so i guess we'll just move forward from here! Happy new year.