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Jan. 8th, 2020

A Hundred Goodbyes.

I'll be around for the communities, but probably not much else.
I'll be here, primarily.

Much, much love.

Dec. 31st, 2008

Top 50 Albums of 2008

1. Have a Nice Life Deathconsciousness: The Plow that Broke the Plains/The Future
2. Punch Brothers Punch
3. Deerhunter Microcastle/Weird Era Cont.
4. TV On the Radio Dear Science,
5. Women Women
6. M83 Saturdays = Youth
7. Why? Alopecia
8. Grouper Dragging a Dead Deer Up a Hill
9. Ponytail Ice Cream Spiritual
10. Adam Pasion O Hear the Rattling
11. Starflyer 59 Dial M
12. Thee Oh Sees The Master’s Bedroom is Worth Spending a Night In
13. Titus Adronicus The Airing of Grievances
14. No Age Nouns
15. Vivian Girls Vivian Girls
16. Woods Some Shame / Woods Family Creeps Woods Family Creeps
17. Thee Silver Mt. Zion Memorial Orchestra & Tra-La-La Band 13 Blues for Thirteen Moons
18. Fuck Buttons Street Horrrsing
19. She & Him Volume 1
20. Pyramids Pyramids
21. Katie Stelmanis Join Us
22. Xiu Xiu Women As Lovers
23. Norma Jean vs. the Anti-Mother
24. Blood On the Wall Liferz
25. Be Your Own Pet Get Awkward/Get Damaged EP
26. Atlas Sound Let the Blind Lead Those Who Can See But Cannot Feel
27. Fucked Up The Chemistry of Common Life
28. Blitzen Trapper Furr
29. Langhorne Slim Langhorne Slim
30. Marnie Stern This is it and I am it and You are it and So is That and He is it She is it and it is it and That is That
31. Broken Social Scene Presents: Brendan Canning Something for All of Us…
32. The Notwist The Devil, You + Me
33. Pocahaunted Peyote Road/Island Diamonds/Mirror Mics/Beast That You Are
34. Ellen Allien Sool
35. The Gutter Twins Saturnalia
36. Amanda Palmer Who Killed Amanda Palmer
37. Abe Vigoda Skeleton
38. Color Revolt Plunder, Beg, and Curse
39. U.S. Girls Introducing…/Gravel Days
40. Ryan Adams & the Cardinals Cardinology
41. Lack Saturate Every Atom
42. Tears Run Rings Always, Sometimes, Seldom, Never
43. The Hold Steady Stay Positive
44. Genghis Tron Board Up the House/Board Up the House Remix EP’s
45. Paavoharju Laulu laakson kukista
46. Murder By Death Red of Tooth and Claw
47. The John Francis Impostors Suckfrancisco Frankenstance
48. Ten Kens Ten Kens
49. People Under the Stairs Fun DMC
50. Raphael Saddiq The Way I See It

Honorable Mention for the year’s greatest sound art/art installation album:
Janek Schaefer Extended Play

Nov. 29th, 2008

Cross-Journal I

Scene 1

I think it's relatively clear now

We have both seen
Yoko Ono naked
Not, per se, 'in the flesh'
[chuckle if you must]
But nothing dispels lies
Quite like black & white photographs

And I've come to think
This might just
Have something to do
With the reason why
When searching for camouflaged
House numbers

And xxxxxxx xxx XX Xxxxx
Xxxxxxx coffee shop windows
I should xxxx xxxxxx
Xxxx'xx xxx xx cars, movie theatres
Or inside someone's apartment


[Scene 2]


[Scene 3]

Nov. 12th, 2008

"How can you smoke on an empty stomach?" "It's not empty. There's gin in it."

The last 60 minutes have been strangely revelatory.

(Advance warning: this is another stupid "I'm gonna tell more about a concept album I'm trying to write and have been jabbering about for months but have yet to produce anything audible" entry. However, audible [in rawest demo form] is available here and here.)

Last week I read an article on nytimes.com about a play showing off-Broadway in New York called Blasted, an (apparently) very physically and emotionally violent work that has forced its actors to regard its production as less acting and more like a highly choreographed theatrical dance (article here).

Brief quotation:

But why have so few Americans been given a chance to judge the play for themselves? (It has had only a few sanctioned productions in this country.) Partly it’s because Simon Kane, Ms. Kane’s brother and the executor of her estate, has denied several production requests.

“Mostly they’re ridiculous,” he said. “There was a company that applied for the rights to ‘Blasted’ and said, ‘We’re the people to do “Blasted” because we’ve done a stage adaptation of “Texas Chainsaw Massacre.” ’ ”

But gore isn’t the point. “The purpose of the violence in Sarah’s plays is diametrically opposed to the purpose of violence in most other people’s plays,” Mr. Kane said. “The purpose of the violence in Sarah’s plays is to resensitize people to what violence is.”

Mr. Kane added that 2008 is the perfect time to mount his sister’s work. “You’ve only got to watch the latest Batman film to realize how desensitized to violence we are,” he said.

An intensely violent morality play interests me in a way that is inexplicable unless you understand the reason why I re-read Less Than Zero and The Rules of Attraction on a near-annual basis. And in a moment of academic genius and clarity, I remembered that Fresno State does, in actually, have a library, even if it currently happens to be housed in huge storage containers distributed throughout the valley.

So I search "Sarah Kane" and find several listings, and requested her complete works and a book entitled Love Me or Kill Me: Sarah Kane and the Theatre of Extremes. The day I picked them up, I'd had Blasted read within 90 minutes of receiving the book. It was in turns terrifying and stark and gorgeously minimalistic yet lush in the way only a few careful words can be, even the stage directions compelling...it was a feeling I haven't had reading a play in over 4 years, since the first time I read Beckett's Endgame and got all messed-up in the head and couldn't talk to a soul about it, my girlfriend at the time in the class with me reading the same material and thinking it was shit and I just couldn't even talk to her I was so simultaneously disgusted and overwhelmed and edgy and all the electrons in my brain pranging out at the exact same time...granted, I was more of an elitist then; irregardless, something shifted in me with that exposure.

Reading Love Me or Kill Me tonight I stumbled upon this quotation of Kane's regarding the fact that there is a sudden shift in the "plot" narrative within Blasted:

I think that what happens in war is that suddenly, violently, without any warning whatsoever, people's lives are completely ripped to pieces. So I literally just picked a moment in the play, I thought I'll plant a bomb and blow the whole fucking thing up." (Saunders 41)

It's a phenomenal bit of socio-surrealism, where an understandable reality is suddenly torn to shreds by another, irrelated-but-actually-completely-related reality, and the "plot" shifts and the characters all shift and everything has to be reset, like a chess board that has been turned over.

And suddenly, it all clicked.
Not so much like: "I can do that," but more, "I have to do that."
Because I'm trying to write an album that is less about storytelling and more about an audio-emotional experience, that exists within a specific timeline...but continuity is ridiculous in absolute full-form, because nothing in life is so regimentally structured.

We all have bombs that rip apart our lives at times when we never expect them or could never imagine them; if we knew, beforehand, that they would be coming, we'd acquiesce to despair and just await death, really, but they come unannounced, and not with death, necessarily, because usually we survive, perhaps without limbs or sight but alive nonetheless, and we carry on, and we await to see if the same mistakes are made again or not.

60 (maybe 90) minutes ago, I had no idea that was I was trying to create was about this very thing.
Now I realize it has been the main subject of my creative inquiry all along.

Aug. 21st, 2008



"If there were no eternal consciousness in a man, if at the bottom of everything there were only a wild ferment, a power that twisting in dark passions produced everything great or inconsequential; if an unfathomable, insatiable emptiness lay hid beneath everything, what would life be but despair?" - S.K.

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