Thursday, July 23, 2009

Videos of the Week

It has been an exhausting week at work. Finding 16 hours a day to work is no easy task. And somehow I found time to post several blog entries. I guess I do work better under pressure. Here are the latest videos that struck my attention this week:

Sally Shapiro is another Swedish pop delight. Apparently there is no one called Sally Shapiro and its just some producer and a fictitious persona. Oh well, no bother, considering there create some of the most delightful pop music out there. New single "Love in July" is another frothy piece of Ital-disco. Cute as a bug's ear video featuring a daredevil goldfish out to save a trapped whale.

Slowdive is one of my favorite bands of all time. Sadly, they only released three albums before splitting. This is a live performance of one of my favorite songs from their second album Souvlaki called "Allison." Beautiful song.

Classic trance from Orbital. Awesome dance song.

Gorgeous ambient track from Burial from his first cd. The song perfectly evokes the title.

My favorite song by Men at Work. Just a great melody and haunting chorus.

Miracle Legion was one of my favorite bands from college. The singer's wife recently passed away suddenly leaving him with two small children. The put together a beautiful tribute cd of Miracle Legion covers in order to help out with the bills. Here is a gorgeous song from their peak period.

Yes, Grizzly Bear again. Their album Veckatimest is still the best cd released this year. It is stunningly put together. Here is a typically brilliant live performance from Letterman for the song "Ready, Able."

I think I have posted this video before, but it is such a beautiful song and video that I am posting it again. Of course, it helps that I have recently fallen in love with the most amazing man. Makes the song very poignant to me.

Poor Adam Yauch was diagnosed with cancer and the Beastie Boys had to cancel their summer tour and push back the release of their latest cd. Here is a classic.

And the post is finished with a classic monologue from Buddy Cole. This one always cracks me up. His one book to take while stranded on a desert island: "All About Rhoda"!!

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Non Sequiturs

Bruce is coming down from Chicago this weekend so I want it to be a wonderful, positive weekend with no negativity, so I am going to vent all my frustrations in this edition of Non Sequiturs so that my mind and soul will be cleansed.

Several small things have irritated me this past week:

People on cell phones while driving cars. It amazes me how people are slaves to their phones such that they have to be on them all the time. If I ever see someone driving erratically, or making sudden lane changes or turns, 99% of the time the person is on their cell phone. Someone about careened into me the other day while doing a three lane change left turn. I ended up next to the person and as it happened their window was down and I proceeded to ask them if they were born a moron or if talking on the phone instantly turned them into one. Needless to say, my question was not met with a friendly answer.

People who turn when I clearly have the turn signal and the right of way. Traffic laws are not difficult. They are actually based on common sense. The same with people who cannot function at a four way stop or roundabout. Argh.

Fat and/or lazy people who ride escalators and do not walk up them, or fat and/or lazy people who go up or down one floor on an elevator. Maybe you wouldn't be fat and/or lazy if you walked up the escalator or took the stairs.

There is a contract attorney at one of my jobs who is a sidler. You know, the kind of people that no matter where you go or what you are doing, without warning all of a sudden they are there. And he wears the same thing every day, which is just bizarre.

My neighbor next door slams her front door whenever she enters or leaves. Our doors are very heavy and basically shake the building if you do not gently close them. I have asked her several times not to slam the door as it generally wakes me up, since she comes in from work well after I have gone to bed.

There is also a downstairs neighbor and his wife who have a dog that looks like a cross between a collie and a german shepherd. The dog only likes them and growls and makes aggressive noises towards any other person. It is so menacing that the owner never takes the dog in the elevator and has it on a very short leash to keep it from going after someone. I was in the stairwell the other day and saw him coming down one of the hallways with the dog. He saw me through the glass window, and instead of waiting for me to continue down the stairs and away from them, he came right out and followed close on my heels all the while the dog is growling and straining at the leash. My worry is if one day he slips and the dog gets loose and attacks someone. As I was trying to get out of the way, I sort of snapped at him and told him to back off that I didn't like his dog. He just looked at me like I was insane. If you have a dog that is that unsocialized you do not need to be living in a condo complex, you need a house where the dog cannot attack someone.

That is enough for now. I just wanted to get some things off my chest. Ahhhhh. Peace and calm.

I have a thing for cats. And I have a thing for Star Wars. Put the two together...heaven!

Lyrics That Are Rattling Around My Brain

"I’m gonna take a stab at this
Surely we’ll be alright
Make a decision with a kiss
Maybe I have frostbite
And when I shuffled on back home
I made sure all my tracks in the snow were gone
Tissue and bone it was a tryst
This isn’t a gunfight
Checking it off of my list
Unable to write
Five years, countless months and a loan

Hope I’m ready, able to make my own, good home"

Grizzly Bear
"Ready, Able"

"Don't speak to me this way
Don't ever let me say
Don't leave me again
I never felt this loss before
And the world is closing doors
I never wanted anything more.

Don't hurt me this way
Don't touch me this way
Don't hurt me again"


"When the world is a monster
Bad to swallow you whole
Kick the clay that holds the teeth in
Throw your trolls out the door

If you're needing inspiration
Philomath is where I go
Lawyer Jeff he knows the low-down
He's mighty bad to visit home"

"Can't Get There From Here"

"Surrender your heart to me
Surrender your heart to me
Surrender your heart why can't you see
It's the only way that it can be
Surrender your heart I don't know why
But you never give in to me"

Missing Persons
"Surrender Your Heart"

"You're the one who told me
You're the one who told me what to say
Would you come and hold me?
Would you come and show me right away?

Cause I'm gone
Cause I'm gone"

Dinosaur Jr.
"I Don't Wanna Go There"

Appealing Things:

80 degree high temperatures in Atlanta in the middle of July
Mountain biking
Rock Band

Annoying Things:

Cell phone companies
My doctor's office staff who are rude
Working two jobs and putting in 80 hours a week
People who type loudly
Not having universal health care

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Wait for Me

Wait for Me
9 out of 10

I'd given up on Moby. I loved him during his rave days and how he took simple melodies and attached them to great dance beats; loved him when he matured and produced one of the classic dance records of all time Everything is Wrong; and loved him more when he merged archaic field samples to pristine electronica in his masterpiece Play. Then he got caught up in his own celebrity and put together cd after cd of copycat music trying to ape the success of Play. So when word came that Moby had left his label and was self-releasing his new cd Wait for Me, I didn't really give it much thought. Then I began reading that he had been talked to by David Lynch who told him to stop making music for the masses and to make it for himself. And my curiosity got the better of me, and I decided to download it.

I've told people that this album reminds me of R.E.M.'s Automatic For The People. It's an album about loss and the effects that stem from it. It is not an up album by any stretch of the imagination, but it is not depressing either. It is filled with some of the most gorgeous music Moby has ever created. I have listened to it probably twice a day every day since I've bought it. It will rival Grizzly Bear's Veckatimest as one of my favorite cds of the year.

It begins with the haunting electronic strings of "Division," whose simple melody will carry itself through a lot of the songs.

Which leads into the first half of the cd which is pretty near perfect. The poignant and moving "Pale Horses":

To the melancholy "Shot in the Back of the Head" with its surreal video directed by David Lynch:

The second half of the cd opens with the New Order-esque song "Mistake" which is the only song that Moby himself sings on the cd:

Moby had the majority of the album sung by female friends from his neighborhood. They all put in extremely moving performances. From the electro-blues of "Walk with Me"

And the delicate title track "Wait for Me":

The rest of the cd is made up of tender ambient tracks and more forays into the sampling that he is known for. But instead of sounding like a tired rehash of previous incarnations, they all move the cd to its beautiful and sad conclusion, "Isolate."

I would hate to know what Moby is going through right now to have put together such a sorrowful and gut wrenching cd. It's by far his most honest work and rewards multiple listens. It provides a backdrop for contemplating one's own life and how to make the most of the limited time we have here. It is a stunning achievement that I highly recommend.

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Videos of the Week

Yes, yes I know. I have been bad. I have not posted in ages. I've been trying, but I have been working two jobs and putting in 16 hour days, so there is little time to do the normal things in my existence let alone post on here. I will try to do a little better. Here is a smattering of the videos that caught my attention this week.

Scott Thompson as Buddy Cole never fails to brighten my day. His monologues are hysterical. Here is a funny one talking about dinosaurs. "Get extinct!"

Crystal Castles can best be described as atari punk. Over harsh beats and video game bloops and bleeps, the duo create some of the most haunting music. Here is the video for one of my favorite songs off their debut called "Courtship Dating."

The Twilight Sad's new cd is my most eagerly anticipated release of the year. On the basis of this single and a couple of other new songs, I don't think I will be disappointed. "I Became A Prostitute" doesn't mess with their quiet/loud dynamic and pairs it with an achingly sad video.

Remixed version of "One More Chance" from Bloc Party. Interesting house music vibe.

One of the best dance tracks of all time. Has a great beat that builds and builds. Song has multiple meanings. More directly it is about getting lost in the music on a dance floor, and the deeper meaning is about a person getting caught up in the dance music drug culture and losing all control.

Antony and the Johnson's live staple, a cover of Beyonce's "Crazy in Love." He really brings out the raw emotion of the song. His voice is pure heaven.

New single from Holy Ghost! A shot for shot remake of the New Order video for Confusion, right down to a cameo by remix legend Arthur Baker.

Haunting video for the Moby song "Shot in the Back of the Head," directed by his good friend David Lynch. This is a very strong instrumental track off of Moby's latest cd, Wait for Me. I will be posting a review of the cd this week. It is one of the most moving cd's I have heard in awhile and is a strong return to form for Moby.

Nine Inch Nails at Bonnaroo, performing a cover of Joy Divison's classic "Dead Souls."