I know it's wrong to make you fall in love with me

Dear friends,

Ya like synth pop? Fabulous lady singers? Sweden? Bands that describe their sound as "4 queers, 3 chords, 100 melodies?" Fiercely competitive DJ-battling? Celebrating the first day of Hannukah with drink specials? All of the above? If your answer was YES, then you need to mark your calendar in red STAT 'cause Jeff K and I have put together an event that celebrates all those things!

You are cordially invited to:

Neon Lights presents...

Friday, December 15th



In My Head (ysi link)

"The Ballet has been a band for barely over a year, and they only pressed 200 copies of their debut full-length, which comes packaged in hand-folded envelopes and is totally brilliant, full of adorable, infectious songs that toe a line between 60s bubblegum pop and stylized 90s indie pop. They're fast becoming one of our favorite bands.... Kudos to Brooklyn Vegan for jumping all over these guys a few months back. Their orchestral pop is driven by brilliant melodies you can't believe haven't been used before." - The L Magazine


Drugs in My Body (ysi link)

"The European electronic force is strong with this Swedish-American trio, now based in NYC, and anyone listening to their new 12" of Drugs in my Body will be left wondering why the title track and b-side Fass are not played regularly in their local club of musical entertainment...Unhinged as hell Drugs in My Body is like a clap happy Ween taking Daft Punk to the disco. If they take Cut Copy with them and they are in a dancing mood then we might be near." - 20 Jazz Funk Greats


Tremolo (ysi link)

"Lismore "Pour Un Ancien Ami" - This sounds like female-fronted early 90s Euro-indie rock (let's say Sleeper or Lush, for example) encased in a block of ice. Either that, or the song equivalent of this drawing that my man John Cei Douglas drew the other day. Chilly but sweet, like music sorbet." - Fluxblog


Echinacea (ysi link)

"If I didn't know better I'd expect Olga Bell, to be already signed and have a million fans, possibly even have sold out to a car commercial. But, I know nothing about her, save the fact that her work is part springtime tulip, part bitter wit, part grey morning heartbreak, part happy day, and all sorts of fresh and snappy. Is she American? Is she working on more songs? How can I get my fingers on an album? And, why is she so damn cute?" - Strawberryfire

Featuring DJs Earfarm, Colleen Crumbcake and Fluxblog


The Delancey , 168 Delancey Street (between Clinton and Attorney)
(212) 254-9920


7:30 PM doors, 8 PM show


$10 ($3 Beers from 7:30-8:30 , $6 Beer + Whiskey combo from 9:30-10:30, Plus one more mystery drink special at Midnight.

Love, D

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Somewhere on a higher mental plane

Dear friends,

1. For some reason, I couldn't get this song* out of my head yesterday. I wonder if my subconcious was trying to tell me something. Hmmm...

- Moment to contemplate inner tumbleweeds and wind noise landscape -

The video is great. Love that disco in a box.

If I Only Had a Brain/MC 900 FT. Jesus

2. The actual Merry Swankster himself said to go see this band last night. I showed up at 8 only to leave when the Lillith Fair part of the evening made me hungry for tacos**. My most favorite fetching, curly-haired spy stayed however and reported that Colourmusic were ALL THAT and a bag of chips. Plus dip. Befriend them on My Space and download their Circles MP3.

3. Tomorrow I will unveil something that I first kinda mentioned at the bottom of this post. Watch out! You might get what you're after! Cool baby! Etc...

Love, D

* NOT the Wizard of Oz number.

** That reads so pervy doesn't it? Not intentional. When faced with pretty voiced Celtic pop stylings my instinct is to run away and eat something hearty.

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It seems to end and then it seems to start

Dear friends,

Woke up today to the sound of the TV alarm and the volume was low enough that all the terrible news of the day was reduced to a warm sususususurrrru-sounding murmur. Ah, Mondays after a long weekend. Way more brutal than your regular Mondays. You have to be a warrior to survive them.

This song sounds like my brain right now, gradually focusing.

I Dreamed We Fell Apart/Memphis (YouSendIt Download)

I'm sure Torquil Cambell (of Stars) and Chris Dumont have some special reason for naming their project Memphis. This is likely to remain an inside joke since I don't get the reference at all. When I think of Memphis, I think of Sun records and kicking up dust. Their sound is more like Northern city in winter. Snowscapes and the lingering memory of ghosts as you wrap your coat around you a little bit tighter and scrunch up your face at the wind. Actually, listening to this song has the same effect as walking in the cold; it numbs you until every sound that greets your ears carries a vague hum. And you enter your home, put your bags down and sit at the kitchen table defrosting and then, just like that, it's gone.

Buy A Little Place in the Wilderness by Memphis.

Love, D

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Until I found the one I needed at my side

Dear friends,

The day after Thanksgiving and I actually don't feel like a giant grotesque but that's not gonna stop me from going for a huffing and puffing run. For all you people that view joggers at stop lights with secret derision, I'll be the dumpy one with the cranberry colored face looking miserable.

So my mom came over last night for the feast and she told me that she'd heard the new Yusuf Islam AKA Cat Stevens AKA The Cat and found it too preachy. I responded with an "Oops, that's one of my Christmas gifts to you." She laughed her chiming laugh and said, "Oh, but there's one song on it that's beautiful so it's okay." Parental save or honest comment? Who knows? The point is he's back (kinda) in good, albeit slightly deeper, voice and he's feeling religiously mystical. So much so that he remakes his classic I Think I See the Light* and boy, does he mean it this time. The original's frantic, almost aggressive tone is changed with a slinkier, more confident take. While I prefer the desperation of the original, I admire the re-examination. From the profane to the sacred, indeed.

two songs...

I Think I See the Light/Cat Stevens (YouSendIt download)

I Think I See the Light/Yusuf Islam (YouSendIt download)

a video...

Heaven/Where True Love Goes/Yusuf Islam

Buy An Other Cup by Yusuf Islam.

Enjoy your leftovers!

Love, D

* If you're a fan of Harold and Maude, this is the song that starts playing when Bud Cort's Harold decides to take the plunge and bed Ruth Gordon's feisty septuagenarian Maude. Cat Stevens' cries of "So shine/shine/shine!" go perfectly with the look on Harold's face as he lies in her bed looking completely at peace. A great pairing of song and image; aural confetti to a well made choice.

** On a related note, because I am a fan of embarrassing and unnecessary autobiographical detail, you should know that Harold and Maude was the absurdly inappropriate film that was playing during my first attempt to seduce The Monkey. I invited him over, plied him with food and drink, put on the movie and watched him watch it. To this day, when I think about him sitting on my couch, staring at the screen, lips stained with red wine, pizza box at his feet, I wonder if he had any idea what was going on. Either way, I'm thankful he stuck around to find out.

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Can't always kiss you better

Dear friends,

1. My adventures in asskickery and illness continue, hence my absence. It has been a rough week. Boy oh boy am I looking forward to Thanksgiving. I'll watch the Heroes* marathon on the Sci-Fi channel while The Monkey prepares the turkey. That's the life!

2. If you were the sort of adolescent girl who got into the notion of wind swept moors as erotic scenery and gruff, but secretly tender men who could sense your INNER BEAUTY, chances are you were a Jane Eyre fan. I was WAY into that shiz. So, when I read that Charlotte Gainsbourg had been cast as the titular character in the feature film version, I was vexed as all get out. Why oh why a Frenchie? Yes, I know she's half English, but she's a Gainsbourg for Chrissakes, you can't get more Gallic than that!

I was wrong of course. She gave a lovely and grave portrayal; playing Eyre with a steady gaze that said everything you needed to know about her inner tempestuousness. She looked just right. Not so pretty that she couldn't make her plain Jane (budump bump chhhh) protestations stick but also suddenly, surprisingly beautiful.

There is something of that quality to her singing voice. Of steel under butter, of gray into rainbow. It's soft, at times uncertain and on the high notes, a little weak, but the feeling underneath shimmers. When she hits her stride in terms of phrasing, which is impeccable really, her lines sound airy and light, and part of you wants to float away on that sound. And the world her voice inhabits is one where astronauts wear cashmere space suits and float to the soundtrack of a glockenspiel's bright pings. Nice, eh? You would think that an atmospheric bonbon of a chanson like Little Monsters would just disappear in the void after one listen but this one stays in your head.

a song...

Little Monsters/Charlotte Gainsbourg (YouSendIt download)

a video...

The Songs that We Sing/Charlotte Gainsbourg

(Check out the poached Bonnie and Clyde strings on this one.)

Buy Charlotte Gainsbourg's album, 5:55

3. When I first heard Parachutes by Sean Lennon, I thought it was a lost Squeeze number that was left off their albums due to its flippant morbidity. After all, Glenn Tilbrook specialized in relationship x-rays but his were more rueful affairs; this one has an undercurrent of something else entirely underneath. While the theme expressed is of ye olde 'Double decker bus/crashing into us' variety, there is something about all the love gone wrong metaphors that sounds sour. Don't misunderstand. I like this song. I like humming along to it. The melody is so ephemeral and slight. But it creeps me out too and I enjoy that combination in a pop song. For fans of Squeeze and the more rancorous side of Elliott Smith.

a song...

Parachutes/Sean Lennon (YouSendIt download)

a video...

Spectacle/Sean Lennon

I like this song as well. Prettily sung put down numbers really can’t go wrong, especially when the blame is parceled out to the one doing the bitching as well.

Buy Sean Lennon's album, Friendly Fire.

Love, D

* I only recently started watching this show. Just so you're aware how intellectually engaged I am to this program, let me quote myself from this past Monday's viewing: "No! NO! Don’t kill the hot guy! COME ON! He’s HOTTTTTT"

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Embracing me with two hands

Dear friends,

1. Why I don't have much to say for myself

Work has quite suddenly and unexpectedly decided to kick my ass. So instead of the usual blather about music here is an image of where I plan to be in December:

I've been fattening up The Monkey for the sacrifice.

2. This isn't about music so much as revisiting songs for lyrical content. A series? Nah, I'm not that organized.

I had never given Evil (or really much of Antics, aside from C'mere and Slow Hands) by Interpol much of a listen until a friend pointed out its crisp and wacked lyrics and suddenly the song took an unexpected glow. Singer Paul Banks sounds enraptured, as enraptured as a man can sound when his clipped diction usually makes him come off like an alien with a megaphone. Not this time though; here he's free enough to let his partner know that he'd like to be with her and take her places, maybe somewhere they can get a tan. Never mind the fact that he can't quite remember if her name is Rosemary or Sandy, he'd like her to forget the past and take his hand. He MEANS that shiz. So much so that even when he keeps repeating the jinx coda line "Why can't we just look the other way," the sing-along is more chipper than frustrated.

Evil/Interpol (YouSendIt Download)

On the same loosening up front, on Narc, it's pretty much full on uptight humanoid taking off their expensive jacket, throwing it on the floor and telling you exactly what he wants. And what he wants is his engine tended to. By you. Fah real. Banks intones about bedrooms, thighs and about you being all up in his space (My Space?) and makes his soft porn scenario sound kinda classy. Mostly because his delivery is so restrained and asexual that even the aforementioned car service metaphor breezes by without a hint of sleaze.

The song in the 80's set movie where the hero unexpectedly hooks up with the drug dealer's super hot but damaged mistress. Oh, you know it's gonna happen.

Narc/Interpol (YouSendIt download)

Have a good weekend!

Love, D

PS Seriously, the Boubacar is coming. Monday hopefully.

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I'm so glad that I'm an island

Dear friends,

1. It sounds like wind. And it's morning. You are walking along the foggy promenade. The woman whispering in your ear tells you what to do, exactly what to do but also tells you what she would do if she were in your place. Or maybe she's been talking about herself all along and you've become her. No matter, your pace intensifies and becomes a full on run. It is clear you're not going anywhere in particular and you're moving to get this feeling out. That's what the sudden guitar attack is there for. It is there to remind you that change and decision making can be a violent internal affair. And this surely feels like war. You make your choice, set your teeth and resume your walk. Slow down and eventually stop. It turns out what you heard wasn't wind noise at all. It was the sound of all the time you spent trying to make it work and the ghost of that time finally taking its leave.

Emily Haines from Metric* has a voice that can't help but be intimate. Even at her fiercest, she's got a familiar, lilting tone that feels like a friend's hand on your back. So all the things you don't want to hear become more palatable somehow. Empty from Live it Out is song as thought process. One where the feelings involved are so strong, you're half pushed along, half frozen in place.

Empty/Metric (YouSendIt Download)

2. The vaults of Soft Communication

From April 5, 2006…

In darkness with memories

Featuring three live covers:

My World is Empty Without You/I Hear a Symphony/The Afghan Whigs (YouSendIt Download)

Satisfaction/Björk and Polly Jean Harvey (YouSendIt Download)

Go Easy/Beck (YouSendIt Download)

3. Tomorrow a little Boubacar Traoré.

Love, D

* Personal admission #38: I went to see Metric during their last tour. They opened with Empty and while it lost most of its vulnerability, it was still potent. Arch, lithe and lightning quick; Haines was quite a performer. She danced, shot down dudes in the audience shouting I love yous, and played her keyboard all while rocking a spectacularly tight black sheath. Initially, I was down with the punk by way of Vogue posing, after all she could work it AND has the talent to back it up. But later in the show, she started complaining about khakis and why the fuck is everyone wearing khakis in New York. The crowd cheered wildly in response, the way concert crowds do. I looked down at myself, in my usual outfit of rumpled nonchalance, not khakis but jeans and a sweatshirt with a tomato sauce stain, stared around at the various Haines doppelgangers and suddenly felt like getting the fuck outta there. Because no matter how much I love the music, it's hard to swallow fight conformity banter from a skinny, statuesque blonde in designer duds who has just finished singing about whether women are "Are...all designed to be confined." So out I went into the cold and walked home.

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They see me rollin'

Dear Friends,

1. I'm WAY behind the times. Always. But I feel it's safe to assume that I'm not the only one. So for those who no longer use MTV DJ LaLa's shrill tones as their morning alarm, have ever uttered the words, "Who the hell is Chamillionaire?" OR kept up to date with "Weird Al" Yankcovic's current output past Amish Paradise...this is for you.

Ridin' Dirty/Chamillionaire feat. Krayzie Bone

White and Nerdy/"Weird Al" Yankcovic

2. Because a friend pointed out to me that if one were to have sex with Soft Communication* it would be like an orgy with only one person**, I've decided to do a little contributor clean up. If you've ever written a post, you're cool. If you haven't, you're AUF'd, unless you contact me by Friday to tell me that you've been planning a piece on Lisa Lisa and the Cult Jam and it's almost ready to set the world ON FIRE! Or that you're going to be utterly lazy and put up some You Tube videos. Eh, that should be enough.

3. Tomorrow some Afghan Whigs and Metric.

Love, D

* Blame it on The Cold Inclusive

** BURN!

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I'd like to thank you for everything/primarily your glass house

Dear friends,

I am currently listening to my favorite album of all time in its brand new remastered with extra tracks plus a fat booklet form.

Understandably, I can't write anything coherent about it at this time. Too busy bopping about like a Muppet. I will though. Later this week.

In the meantime, have a listen to a particularly goofy number from said album. I described this song yesterday as being 100% HALF-ASS, in that everything about its execution: the lyrics, the playing, EVERYTHING, sounds made up on the spot, dressed in a potato sack and then thrown out the window. "Maybe/someone is gonna save me/My heart is made of gravy." Hoo boy. And they STILL slapped it on the record. Nevertheless, as The Monkey brilliantly pointed out, if you don't like this trifle, you could never love Pavement. True dat.

AT&T/Pavement (YouSendIt download)

Let me know when you're ready for the stronger stuff.

Love, D

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I swear I heard a nightingale

Dear friends,

1. No lie, I requested a copy of The Vain, The Modest, and The Dead by The Lisps because there is someone in the band named César Alvarez and this indie rock Latina likes to seek other indie rock Latins*. Of course there's always the slight possibility that the name's a weird hipster affectation (Hispanic is the new black!) and his real moniker is Joe Smithsonberry. I hope not. Dedos crusados.

Their song Machine is an odd bird. Schizophrenic bedroom electro with a saxophone break is not exactly what I'd expected to hear after a couple of carefully controlled numbers about not wanting to be the one you loved and dirty lips. Singer Sammy Tunis has a strangely colored voice, almost metallic sounding thanks to the way she strikes notes; like a shaft of light on a knife. If you weren't paying attention you might mistake the childlike directness of her sound for amateurishness but her vocals have a determined quality that sounds like she knows exactly what she's doing. The aforementioned Mr. Alvarez counters her with some Lee Hazlewood-style rumbles and back and forth verse trading. I'm not sure what this pair is trying to tell me, the words are all you/me/us accusations from planet Casio so as a listener, I'm caught in a weird place. Somewhere between wanting to do the robot and scowling in a corner. Naive art rock? Not quite, a little too much in the know. But it does the trick. Keep an eye on the listings and catch 'em next time they play out.

Also, befriend them on My Space.

Machine/The Lisps (yousendit link)


I have buddies who play music. Tonight two fabulous band friends, and Beg Yr Pardon alumns, Gold Streets and The Song Corporation play Galapagos at 10PM as part of Jezebel Music Presents Consigment. I hear that Leslie and The Lys are playing as a special last minute guest. Why write anything about 'em when I can link this picture? Or embed this video?

Gold Pants/Leslie and The Lys

Time to whip out the bedazzler!

Love, D

* No joke, at shows, if I think I see an indie rock Latin, I point at them, smile like a shark and give them the secret wink. A wink so secret, they always think I have something in my eye.

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My whole life, I've been learning

Dear friends,

1. No frontin' here on Soft Communication, when Funeral came out, I didn't buy it. I read all the articles but promptly forgot most of what was in them (some things remembered: someone's name is Win, their live shows are supposed to be something else, The Two Davids want to have their babies, and they're from Montreal) but I did like the cover art so I asked The Monkey to get it for me for Christmas last year. I really loved it, but I find it hard to listen to as a whole. Don't misunderstand, it is absolutely an album and therefore, should be an album listening experience, but something about the feel of it makes me prefer single song examinations.

A few weeks ago, whilst enjoying being chauffered around the woods by my more coordinated half, In the Backseat came on. J thought it was Björk, I told him "No, it's the lady from The Arcade Fire." Sure, there is a similarity in timbre but Régine Chassagne's (for that is the lady's name) voice is breathier and less stable. Listening to her sing, you're not quite sure she's going to make the notes she does, so it's almost like you're running alongside her, willing her on, so when she finally takes off, the lift is more ecstatic.

In the Backseat reminds me of my childhood. I'm sure it reminds a lot of people of their childhood, but the specifics of it resonate with me. It becomes the soundtrack to a bittersweet, composite memory. I drift in and out of sleep in the backseat of a car driven by my long absent father. We go through the darkened streets of a country I no longer live in, can barely remember, that doesn't really exist anymore and that I don't understand. Shadows of summer leaves tremble over my face and I can hear my mother talking softly in Spanish as she plays with the radio. The piano goes up and down and the delicate pizzicato of violins gives way to full bowed crescendo as Regine's voice soars into one long ooooooh over the swell. Nostalgia, sadness and somewhere in there, resilience. The diminished plucking returns and the memory of that time in childhood before the irreparable reversals lingers around well after the song fades.

I need to learn to drive.

In the Backseat/The Arcade Fire (yousendit link)

2. Speaking of Björk, I was talking about her 2001 album Vespertine recently. I love it (a mini-suite about burrowing and falling in love, set to the skitter skatter of laptop beats) my friend, not so much ("Yeah...NO.") We both agreed though that the song Cocoon is choice, even if he has a harder time forgetting the subject matter than I do*.

The studio version is a whispered and wondrous admission of bliss and another love-caused feeling some people would rather ignore; gratitude. I say ignore because admitting gratitude in a situation like that is somehow tantamount to admitting you're not deserving of your good fortune. I don't think this is the case here however. It's more like now that I am with you, in this particular moment of post-sex dozing off, I am aware of what was missing and isn't it fabulous! Of course the way the Björk sings about it, either in her childlike sing song poetry about inhaling beards loaded with courage, or less obliquely, with direct sexual detail, it sounds more magical than clichéd. Which is, of course, the way it should be.

Cocoon (Live)/Björk (yousendit link)

3. A whiles back, Contributors Bryan and Mary went on a mission to take back the music, and thus their site, Ruined Music, was born! Go check out the latest stories of music gone very bad indeed and click here to see their brand spankin' new MTV appearance. I, for one, definitely want to see if the camera adds 10 pounds to Bryan's hair. Holla.

4. I was directed to this blog yesterday. I think this scribe needs to write more often. The Liza Minelli entry, for example, has more finely tuned detail and pathos than any throwaway comedic bit deserves to have. I love it. Kudos.

Love, D

* Sample conversation regarding song's subject:
Him - "But it is about fucking Matthew Barney."
Me - "Well...yeah, but it's so..."
Him - (Interrupting) "Yeah but it's about fucking Matthew Barney."
Me - "But you don't have to..."
Him - "It's about FUCKING Matthew Barney."
Me - (Sigh)

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It isn't just talk, talk, talk

Dear friends,

1. Day to Night

The Monkey had to remind me this morning that tonight is Beg Yr Pardon #11 at The Delancey. This is what happens when you have a nasty bug that won't go away residing somewhere in your innards. It must be an alien. Brought by the planet Post-CMJ*.

Anywho, Contributors PhiNa have set up a great Election Day bill:

BYP #11, Tuesday, November 7th
$5, 21+, DOORS at 7:30

Butch and Bellie - 8pm
Screaming Females - 9pm
Broadband - 10pm
Up the Empire - 11pm

DJ sets by Jen from The Music Slut and DJElliott


As always balloons, beer, bonhomie, and brownies!

2. The vaults of Soft Communication

from December 7, 2005...

Belle of the ball at least to me


Bad Reputation/Freedy Johnston (yousendit link)
My Girl is a Beard/Thunderbirds Are Now! (yousendit link)
Guitar Guitar/Liz Janes (yousendit link)
Perfect/Rogue Wave (yousendit link)
Symmetry/Mew (yousendit link)

3. Day to day

Tomorrow there will be three new songs to talk about. I thwear.

Love, D

* Speaking of which, thank you Idolator for the unexpected (and surreal) shout out yesterday! In appreciation, I will have t-shirts embroidered with the words "PRETENTIOUS TWADDLER" sent to your offices. I will also enclose a sampler of obscure Avant-Jazz and Krautrock selections for added 'Huh?' flavor.

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Club nights, one of the reasons I love life

Dear friends,

O CMJ Festival 2006, I am a study in conflict and indifference. On the one hand, I'd love to give you specifics about what I saw, on the other hand I felt resolutely dissatisfied so I wouldn't be doing anyone any favors if I start pointing fingers and naming names. SO I'll protect everyone and let them start from zero. And if you're the kind of person who must know everything, you insert the identities.

I saw several good bands with shitty sound. Band A, for example, which released an EP I adore, had a muted, unkind sound mix at their show. I don't know if the sound guy fell asleep at the wheel or generally, their work was so unlike what he's used to that he figured he'd turn up the guitar real loud and hoped that did the trick. Band B had a lengthy set-up and some sort of issue with the house about the drumkit. There was much whispering and furtive, pained looks at one another as they loaded. When they finally got the ball rolling, the band's leader gave frantic hand gestures to the drummer, as if to say 'We need to keep this going or else they'll cut us off.' Cue unrelenting faulty amp buzz and faces of discontented musos. Which is a shame, because I know that this act prides itself on their meticulous aural presentation so I felt their frustration at not being able to do a more representative performance.

Band C, internationally known, I'm not sure about rockin' the microphone, had their instruments tuned by roadies, libations and towels at the ready and still made their audience wait 56 minutes for them to take the stage. Which meant that if you'd wanted to check out another band at 9, you missed it for naught OR if you were planning to rush off to see an act at 11, you would lose the second half of their laser light lit set. I won't lie, this band probably could've done nothing to please me after that ridiculous wait. Still, I wonder if the experience made me realize something that I've chosen to ignore all this time. Namely, that their songs go NOWHERE, just run on endlessly in layers and layers of wash and that their current offerings are minimalism rock at its worst. Their drummer, a hulking Frankenstein of man in a tiny blazer, is a beast on the kit. Powerful and relentless and clearly wrapped up in the flow of things. Still, when your drummer is the most charismatic man onstage that doesn't bode well for the others. And as I stared at the leader of this outfit, painstakingly playing out each note in his carefully constructed epics, I felt an amazing lack of joy. Just a dry, workman-like satisfaction. This is a shame. Because while I did not care for this band's new album (I found it tedious with precious few moments of real ingenuity or passion) I still think that they wrote one of the most beautiful songs I've heard in the past few years. A song that doesn't sound dissimilar to the others in their ouevre. Still endless, still layered but it. Goes. Somewhere. That track is so beautifully intimate that it seems to take on human form and lie down next to you. It tells you secrets, secrets you've guessed but you're so glad to have confirmation of. Where did that sound go? Regain it! Go remember what life was like before certain tastemaking rockstars were your friend. That sound I can wait for not this tired nonsense. Of course, I realize that this anonymous bitchery is useless, BUT if you're in a successful group and you've got a vague notion that you've turned into a pretentious twaddler with nothing to say, heed my advice.

An hour later somewhere around oh, the fifth song, I turned to The Monkey* and said it's time to go. My feet were tired.

Band D is from across the pond. It might've been their first US appearance. The place was packed. I mean to the back wall, nowhere to run, PACKED. I'd heard the frontwoman's voice and was intrigued by her PJ Harvey gone pop vocal stylings. I was hoping it would be blow me away. Eh...not so much. The lead singer had golden pipes all right but something about her freeze dried performance tics repulsed me and made me not want to watch her perform. There was a lot of mugging, throwing her head back, hitting one chord on her guitar and then randomly lifting her skirt, and it looked and sounded like an 8th grade diarist doing Cabaret. I'm tortured! And pretty! But so tortured! Look at my doll face! I'm TORTURED! (soprano melisma turns into a calculated and trained grunge scream) Yeah, I quit the front, made my way to the back and sat next to my snoozing consort. Afterwards, I almost bought a cd, thinking if I didn't have to look at them it might work, but then thought better of it.

I wish there had been things to see on Sunday. Just so I could've had the chance of possibly, maybe seeing something amazing to close out the celebration. I also wish that when I bumped into clearly crazy but talented musician E, wearing a red velvet cape with a bejeweled collar, I would've grabbed him by his ermine corners and said, "What the hell are you singing about half the time? TELL ME!" I wish my boy didn't have an aversion to hip hop so I could've seen that baby-faced rap duo that went on at 1AM somewhere. I wish that I hadn't been ill during the week so I could've caught some bands whose names attracted me rather than their buzz. I wish that I didn't have to work a job where I just sit there and dream of better things. I wish, I wish, I wish. Until next year...

Love, D

* The Monkey loves this band and thought this was their best show yet.

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Trees surround me

Dear friends,

1. I spent my yesterday whimpering from my couch and getting bitten by mosquitoes. Mosquitoes! In November! Our citronella candle is not doing the job. SO not.

2. Oh Lost, wtf? (SKIP IF YOU HAVE NOT SEEN IT) Should we expect the producers to kill off every character played by DUI-nabbin' actor? (Apparently taxis are hard to come by in that area of Hawaii) Methinks that Eko's statement to Locke and Co. regarding Smokey, the black killer cloud, is really the producer's way of letting the actors know what's up should they misbehave. You're next indeed. Thespians: next time you go out for a nightcap, be sure to hire a driver.

3. Tonight, I'm gonna slime my way over to see A Sunny Day in Glasgow at the Crackers United presents Friction showcase at Sin-e. You know in cartoons when people's eyes go all psychedelic and turn into spirals? That's what the Sunny Day crew does to me with their layered waves of reverb and distant MBV-style lady vocals. I've had bad luck when it comes to catching them so I can't wait to finally hear those songs in person.

Afterwards, CMJ gods willing, I'm gonna run over to see The Big Sleep at Pianos so I can finally catch an entire set. If I don't get in, I'll enjoy the utter crappiness of weekend F train service and head on home.

4. Speaking of A Sunny Day in Glasgow, their song, Laughter (Victims) is a perfect tune to daydream to in a car. The guitar reminds me of R.E.M.'s Catapult but rather than sounding like homage or theft, it's more like the mermaid response to that song, lyrical indecipherability and all. The sound of beautiful creatures, shimmering underwater, beckoning you into the depths. You can't help but go under.

Laughter (Victims)/A Sunny Day in Glasgow (yousendit download)

With thanks to Jeff K (who wrote an inventive haiku review of The Knife show at Webster Hall here) for emailing me the file since I didn't have it on my work computer.

5. If you have a CMJ badge, like to attend panels and ask things like "What's a BLOG?," "Do they eat people?" and "Can I catch it?," then you should attend the 'How Much Clout Do Bloggers Have?' panel and be enlightened by smart folks. At the Stanley H. Kaplan penthouse on Saturday, November 4th, 3:45 PM. I'll see you there.

Have a good weekend!

Love, D

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