Thursday, December 23, 2010

without comment, for now

from the top 100 songs of the year, which i have been left off of, AGAIN:

"One of the dominant sounds of independent music in the past few years has been 60s girl-group pop swathed in a cocoon of distortion."

much to say about this one, but let it soak in first.

Sunday, December 19, 2010

shall i complain?

i propose that pitchfork shrink it's year-end best albums list back down to 20, or maybe even 10. wavvves, gil scott-heron, the national, four tet, sufjan stevens... there's plenty of fluff to choose from.

just to waste a little more of your time, i also think they should go back to a simple 1 to 5 star rating system. in their current system, a 7.4 essentially means the album is 74% good. the absurdity of this system is only magnified when something is deemed 100% good, further so when they don't really bother to write about the music or even relevant context. kanye's record is, of course, The Best Of The Year.

here's just one example of this kind of sloppy writing, in the paragraph about Girls' EP, which I will excerpt in its entirety to pad my own meager sunday post:

"Girls' 2009 debut, Album, was an instant classic, a blast of dizzy, wounded love from a band with an immediate, innate grasp of all things guitar-pop. But frontman Christopher Owens has had a rough life, and people with rough lives have a sad tendency to flame out early. It's easy to imagine Album being Girls' one great statement before the demons that helped Owens write his songs drowned his voice completely. So it's a great relief to hear Broken Dreams Club, a clear indication that this band is in it for the long haul. Broken Dreams Club comes from the same aesthetic universe as Album, but it's relaxed to the point of languor. Old-school Nashville pedal steel and crisp Cotton Club horns find their way in, and a warm oldies-radio vibe pervades. But we're still dealing with despair and hopelessness, and Owens still expresses this stuff in the most simple and direct terms possible: 'When I said that I loved you, honey, I knew it from the very start/ When I said that I loved you, honey, I knew that you would break my heart.' At the center of it all sits 'Carolina', a lazy sprawl that takes the band's own 'Hellhole Ratrace' to a more peaceful place." --Tom Breihan

breihan, you fucking twit, go back and edit this part: "people with rough lives have a sad tendency to flame out early." please, compensated music blogger, tell me more about people with rough lives and their sad tendencies. it is tragic how so many of them die after releasing one guitar-pop record.

but i digress, and i also count one fucking sentence about music in that whole abortion of a blurb. the rest has more of a Behind The Music voice-over feel to it.

The Broken Dreams Club EP has six songs. how the fuck do you write 210 words about six songs, and only find time to mention one of them? as a matter of fact, how the fuck is the teaser EP for this guy's sophomore full-length the 22nd best album of the year?

the list this year has a little player embedded under each album's name, where you can press play to hear a 20-second clip from one some on the record. there's also a link that says "buy mp3". lulz.

finally, i'd like to register how upset i am at the pornification of joanna newsom, shown here doing a harp-tease for a blurry neil patrick harris. give it a rest, assholes.

Thursday, December 9, 2010

o hai blog!

a man is a protagonist. or, at least, he sees himself that way. we watch a lot of television. sometimes we read books, but mostly we just watch tv. either way, nearly all the stories we come across concern male protagonists as they struggle for things.

the sheer volume of these stories with which we have interacted has more or less driven most of us men insane. our lives become an unpleasant symptom of the stories we consume. the protagonist struggles against things and against people, but our struggle is, above all, to be the protagonist -- to become the hero of our own story.

as i said, this is insanity. the world is not a stage. every element of fiction is carefully crafted by people to make the whole thing meaningful. life is, well, not like that.