Thursday, September 28, 2006

Mad Birthday Style.
Cake Motherfucker!

So yesterday was my birthday. I'm twenty-three now. I guess I'm an adult now. Complete with college degree and "career in chosen field." The thing is, sometimes I don't feel that much like an adult. I still feel like an awkward adolescent, acne faced, unsure. Perhaps because I look pretty much the same as I did then. With a better sense of style and a little more nihilism. Still I'd much rather be an adult than an awkward adolescent any day.

Monday, September 11, 2006

Never Forget: Obligatory

Then: Woke up, ate breakfast in the dormitory cafeteria, wondered why no one was watching MTV. Didn’t find out what had happened ‘till I got to class. Spent the rest of the day watching the news. Got a vague uneasy feeling, a slight fear that combat would be impending. Was that patriotism I felt? Probably not. Not anymore anyways. Maybe it didn’t impact me as much because I never actually saw the planes hit. I was 17 then.

Now: Worked today. Didn’t hold hands, shed tears of solace, sing God Bless the U.S.A. When unspeakable tragedy unfolds, it shouldn’t be used as political capital five years later. Especially when the “War on Terrorism” has yet to reach its denouement. Five years later, what’s to show?

Sunday, September 10, 2006

Rebel Photo Shoot

I'm not sure if these are relevant but I feel like posting them anyways.

Shamelessly narcissistic, your humble blogger.

The back of my poster. Joyce is Mrs. Rumsfeld.

The front. The horizontal black words are the various Bush Co. screwups.

4,000 people showed up.
A little girl wrote this. It says Bush Lise!
The free speech cheer squad.

Sunday, September 03, 2006

Kick out the Jams 2K6

Rock and roll, hell music in general has been a part of me even since I was a youngster. When I was four I forced my mom to buy INXS Kick. But it was never my intention for this blog to focus only on music. That doesn’t mean that I won’t talk about it at all. So I present to you a selection of my favorite recorded works of 2K6

TV on the Radio-Return to Cookie Mountain

TV on the Radio dares you to pigeonhole them. They have a sound that defies easy categorization, which means they get tagged with the nebulous moniker of “indie-rock”. Don’t be deceived though, they are as far from Death Cab for Cutie as Fergie is from Bikini Kill. Their sound touches on everything from art-punk to soul to hip-hop without being overly derivative of anything. David Bowie even sings on a track! The best tracks are: Playhouses, Province, and I was a Lover, though the album is solid straight through. Return to Cookie Mountain is their second album and it comes out on September 12th. I would highly recommend purchasing it.

Ghostface Killah-Fishscale

Among the finest MC’s in the game today, Ghostface returns with Fishscale, his first album in a few years. It continues his trend of soul-sample drenched hip-hop and fantastic lyricism. Whether talking about failed heists, cheating girlfriend, bad haircuts, bus-stop romances, or general boasting, Ghostface remains clever, insightful with a master’s eye for storytelling and details. Standout tracks: The Champ, Kilo, Big Girl, Shakey Dog.

Comets on Fire-Avatar

Existing somewhere on the rock and roll spectrum between Led Zeppelin and the Stooges, Comets on Fire deliver an album full of psychedelic, noisy ,classically inspired, but not classically derivative rock and roll. There are a lot of guitar solos. And they’re very good. Standout Tracks: Dogwood Rust, Jaybird, The Swallow’s Eye.

Neko Case-Fox Confessor Brings the Flood

Words I would use to describe this album: Pleasant, Ethereal, Lovely. Neko Case has an incredible singing voice, and is a great songwriter too. Cryptic and somewhat obtuse lyrically the songs have a certain romanticism to them, which as endeared me to this album, as it has remained in somewhat regular rotation since its release earlier in the year. Standout Tracks: Margaret vs. Pauline, Star Witness, That Teenage Feeling, The Needle had Landed.

The Lawrence Arms-Oh! Calcutta!

I think those people who say punk is dead miss the point. While the original environment that made punk rock so vital and immediate is gone, that doesn’t invalidate punk rock as a viable medium for songwriting. A good song is a good song. And The Lawrence Arms write some damned good songs. While shorter and lacking the esoteric literary and cultural references of their last album (though the title alludes to a nude Broadway musical) Oh! Calcutta! is full of great songwriting and memorable melodies. Political without being embarrassingly polemic, personal without being whiney, The Lawrence Arms are one of the finest punk bands going today. Standout Tracks: The Devil’s Taking Names, Great Lakes/Great Escapes, Recovering the Opposable Thumb.

Sonic Youth-Rather Ripped

Sonic Youth are old, but that doesn’t mean they aren’t still good. Turning down the distortion and noise, which they have become legendary for, and focusing on melody and subtle dynamics, The Youth have come up with a very pleasant album for summer. Kim Gordon has never sounded so good and she takes the mike on several songs. The songs are short, the album compact, never diving into the free-form noise experimentalism that they are so famous for. The tradeoff is that these are some of the most melodic songs they’ve written. Standout Tracks: Incinerate, What a Waste, Reena, Jams Run Free.

Friday, September 01, 2006

America, You Could've Done so Much Better

The president made me late for work yesterday. Let me explain. You see, he decided to grace us with his presence yesterday. He came to this sunburned state to make speech, to try and get us to “stay the course”. Tuesday the two headed monster of Donald “I have a standing desk” Rumsfeld and Condi “Oreo” Rice gave similarly boneheaded rhetorical speeches.

I suppose it was karma striking back that made me late.

Yesterday I protested. The President, Rumsfeld, Rice, the whole fucking mess. Joining me, or I was joining about four thousand like minded people. A pro-war or pro-troops as I’m sure they’d prefer, rally only got 400 hundred supporters. Speakers included a Latino man in Che Guevera garb, and a retired marine. All were sincere. Rock Andersen Salt Lake City’s beloved mayor spoke for a half hour and in many ways summed up what all the speakers before him. His voice hoarse from shouting he implored us to demand truth and accountability from out elected officials.

Then we began the march up State Street, signs aloft. The front of mine said “I don’t know which atrocity to protest, there are SO many.” And on the back I wrote “Joyce, you could do so much better.” Joyce is Mrs. Rumsfeld. What blew my mind is this: While marching an older woman approached me and said she went to college with Joyce and that, yes, she though Joyce could’ve done better.

And maybe the world won’t change. It would be nice if others noticed the numbers who came out in such a Mecca of conservativism. (Fun Fact: Utah voted the highest percent republican in the last election!). And maybe this protest was masturbatory and self serving, letting us feel good about ourselves for a little while. Letting us pat ourselves on our back about what good we’re doing. But what are our other options? Apathy? Cynicism? Should we sip our coffee and watch them march by, nodding our heads, smirking at the hippies.

There has been so much lies, corruption, greed, fuck-ups and bad policy with this administration that thinking about it makes you want to bang your head against the wall or go to sleep and wake up wishing it was a dream.

The more I think about it, I feel damn good having gone to this protest. At least I know there are people out there as fed up with these old-money, greedy, pseudo theocrats as I am.