Friday, January 16, 2009

MRI Lightpainting on NPR Science Friday

Ha, it's official. The NPR video just came out and it looks AWESOME. My internet anonymity is shattered but who cares this is sweet.

MRI Lightpainting on NPR Science Friday

Thursday, January 08, 2009

Jay Reatard Sums up my attitudes toward singles vs. albums

Found this in the Onion A.V. Club Interview with Jay Reatard and it spoke to me. I am an album-tard, and find myself seeking singles to define my musical tastes. Here, Jay puts this psychosis in a way I never could.

AVC: You seem to value immediacy in your music. Does that mean you prefer the singles format to albums?

JR: I prefer it in the instant-gratification way, in the same way that smoking crack will make you feel fucking amazing instantly, but probably working out and eating Spirulina for fucking two years in the long run will be more fulfilling for you. That's what LPs and singles are to me. A single is really quick, man. You can get it out, and in two months have it on your merch table. And albums can take a really long time. But when you get done with an album, it's a lot more fulfilling.

Jay Reatard

Joe Tower

Hey Everyone,
So I just stumbled across my good friend Joey's new blog. Along with being one of my oldest friends, Joey is a hell of a guy, a brilliant designer, with great taste in movies/music/media (Anathema and Chelsea Lately notwithstanding).

Check out his blog here, highly recommended.
The Joe Tower Graphic Design Blog

Your Mom

Tuesday, January 06, 2009

Drew Was Right About This Band

I'm a black hole where personal music recommendations go to die. Ask anyone. Many times a friend has recommended something revelatory to me. Some piece of music that changed their life in the most profound ways imaginable. Standard procedure for this is to say, "Oh sweet, [produced by Albini/featuring Keak Da Sneak/remixed by Timbo and Venetian Snares]? Nice", listen to it for 40 seconds, find myself unmoved, and go back to listening to Psalm 69 again for the 7,000th time.

I am an (pardon the stupid new word here) "experiential" music listener. Like many people, music generally only resonates with me when it has an attachment to a moment, a specific blank in time that can only be colored by a very specific song or album. Usually just a song though. Key goes into lock. Enlightenment follows.

A big recommend-er in my life is my friend Drew (way better writer than me). It seems Drew stumbles across life changing music daily. Good for him, but I can't tell you how many times he's tried to get me to "discover" The Ex, or The Birthday Party, or R.A. The Rugged Man, or mewithoutyou...holy shit...that one about 16 times in the last year. I'm sure all of this music is great, but it never hits me when it counts. If the only good Ex album happened to be playing the first time I did a whippet, or if a mewithoutyou song came on while I was feeling guilty about skipping Sunday School, I might be able to match his enthusiasm. But yea, none of this has happened, so I flail and genuinely have no opinion at all on the music (although I might make one up).

Until now. A few weeks ago, Drew sent me a song by this band, Manchester Orchestra. I don't know jack about them so if they happen to be your favorite band in the damn world, or if they happen to have a really fucking lame LJ community that I am "dissing" right now, save it. I'm lucky to even remember their name.

Anyway, the song, "Lid" sat in my itunes, until I came across it by accident yesterday and it moved me. It's earnest as hell, but hey, it can't all be irony and referential Vampire Weekend horseshit all the time. There's enough of that out there. Sometimes you need a building teeth-gritting confessional about heartbreak, murderous thoughts, and a final line as simultaneously devastating and beautiful as the last scene of that movie Let The Right One In (see it).

It really is a great song. The singer sort of reminds me of Built to Spill, and the earnest emotion sounds like a different world to ears steeped in minimal electronic blippery, noise, industrial, shitty rap, and hipster disco nonsense for the last few years. So...uhh....yeah. I took the long way to say this one worked out. So, thanks Drew.

BONUS: I will say though, that, recommendations aside, my musical experiences WITH Drew have been more profound than not. A brief list of highlights. Most of which involve a car.
1. The time he picked me up from a bar, or a party, or something with a bunch of his friends and we blasted Alan Parsons' Tales of Mystery and Imagination REALLY loud (especially "The Raven") and sang along. Best. Album. Ever.
2. Anything involving Strapping Young Lad's "City". Especially the time we dressed up like Coke dealers, put that album on and drove to my friends 18th birthday at Deja Vu (strip club).
3. The night we got extremely high and drove to see System of a Down and Slipknot at Target Center. We put on Buck 65 and got so into whatever album it was that we got unbelievably lost in our own hometown, only to show up a little bit late for System of a Down.
4. That System of a Down Show.

Selected Bibliography:

Alan Parsons - Dream Within a Dream/The Raven. Not the official video...if there is one, I'll eat my hat.

Strapping Young Lad - "Detox"

Buck 65 - "Pants on Fire"

Monday, January 05, 2009

Happy New Year + K'Naan + MRI

Lets kick some major ass in the next one.

So my K'Naan feature made it to MetroPop a while back and I forgot to post about it. I like the feature, but due to the space constraints of writing for a magazine, I am not entirely happy with the result. The reason - K'Naan doesnt really fit into a one page article - you could seriously write a book on the mans life and the topics he brings up. Article notwithstanding, my interview with him was an amazing experience, and thanks to my mentor/editor at Metropop for turning it into something readable.

K'Naan Feature on

Other than that, its been a good one so far. I've got a lot of things I'd like to write about, so hopefully I get around to that. In the meantime, MRI has a new post up, so go check it out.

MRI Lightpainting

Take 'er easy, dude.