December 23, 2008
Christmas is fast approaching, and this is the time where see family and friends, or in my case, just family. Christmas get togethers and new years parties will be missed by me, and I use christmas to enjoy the things that i am truly thankful for. Lets run down the list!
Unsatisfied Heart by Bruce Springsteen – This contends with side 2 of tunnel of love as the best thing by the boss. You can’t go wrong with an 8 minute cut of Born in the USA, amazing outtakes like Cynthia and Frankie, and just the overall bootleg charm. Follow that Dream, Klansman, Sugarland also get definite mention.
Simple Minds – This band just played a handful of shows in the UK, and their set included New Gold Dream from front to back. Around the wintertime i always seem to fall back in love with three of their albums. It dates back to my dad buying new gold dream on cd since he only had it on vinyl, and his Live in the city of light cassette, which is probably my favourite thing by them. They are releasing a new LP this year, and it will be the first time in 27 years that the original lineup (pretty sure first time since new gold dream) will be recording together. Even if its junk, the possibility of a full fledged North American tour is really enticing.
The Apartment – This is the best time to watch it and feel better about someone else’s life.
Steely Dan – Call me Deacon Blues.
Money – Mo’ Money = Mo’ Criterion.
My friend Meghan got us tickets to go see Morrissey. Could be good!
Twee Pop and other related bands – I told Meghan I was into it but not way into it, which is true but I love bands like another sunny day, even as we speak, field mice, heavenly but I’m not twee as fuck and I don’t wear t shirts with cats on them.
and last but not least, Brockwell Park Pt.2
Happy Holidays, and if you’re in oshawa on the 26th or 27th, come down to star records and say whats up. Hopefully Mike’s brother lets me put on some good tunes.
December 14, 2008
So Mark Kozelek has released another album, but its not new material, its just a collection of songs from compilations and two instrumental songs, one used from a short film, and the other just an unreleased song from a couple years back. I guess I should mention apart from those 2 songs, every song on this album is a cover. This wasn’t really anything new for me since I had already heard most of the covers on this LP, but there are definitely a few that stand out among the rest. But to me, this LP is all about the first and last track, “Piano Song” and “Gaping Mouth”. Piano Song reminds me alot of the acoustic cut of Duk Koo Kim found on the 10″ but with piano, hence the name. Gaping Mouth really just sounds like an instrumental version of the alternate version of “The Light” from April, but as opposed to a single guitar and vocals, this version features some really crisp overdubs, that are reminiscent of something I can’t put my finger on, maybe “You ain’t got a hold on me” or something from Tiny Cities.
In regards to the covers to name a few, you got some Kath Bloom, Will Oldham, AC/DC, Husker Du, and LOW. Fuck, his cover of lazy is incredible. I’ve heard it way before this comp came out, but its so worth listening to if you’re a fan of I Could Live in Hope. The cover originally appeared on “We Could Live in Hope: A Tribute to Low”, that I think Mark put together himself. Lazy was one of the highlights of the LP by Low that it was featured on, and I can’t decide if I like I could Live in Hope or Things We Lost in the Fire more. As usual, his version is drastically different. As opposed to the Low version clocking in at 5:40, this one is a cool few minutes, and probably double the speed, and thats not even fast. I would gauge the low version to be around 80 BPM or something. The song only has 5 or so lines which are: Its not enough/Theres not enough for two/Sarah You’re lazy/ she says its not enough for two/Sarah you’re lazy. Heard over the bottom heavy droning, this song makes you think about failed love, and heard over the 12 string folk driven version, I don’t know what I’m supposed to think. I think thats what makes it such a great cover, not to mention marks singing of it is perfect. Telling Jason about Low was probably one of the best things that happened to him this year, along with getting a rickenbacker bass, and his bands 7″ coming out and seeing Neil Young and numerous amazingcore groups.
Another standout cover is Send in the Clowns, and I think it can hold up over the numerous jazz standard versions by the likes of sinatra, collins, bassey, streisand (oof) mainly because of the new take on it. The cover of Celebrated Summer is a treat because i’ve only heard live versions of it. This is one of my favourite Du songs. I put it on a tape once for a girl, it probably did not make the same impact on her that it did to me the first time I heard it. The opening line “Love and hate was in the air, like pollen from a flower” killed me the first time I heard it, and I know that sounds cheesy or whatever but it made sense after/while i experienced one of the most miserable/stupid/heart-wrenching summers of my life. I do think though, that the lyrics for this song are probably overlooked because they kinda get lost in the fuzz of this song, and its hard to miss them in the version found on Finally, so its a successful cover.
Just in case you don’t want to download the album or whatever Jason, I’ll upload what you want to hear, which is the cover of Lazy.
I need a new hobby, or a girlfriend or something.
December 8, 2008
Once a few months back, i read somewhere on the internet that Mark K. was playing a show somewhere and he paid someone in the front row to switch seats with a good looking girl so she would be in his eyeline rather than him. I can’t remember if the guy took him up on this offer, and I don’t have any concrete proof as to if this story is true, but what if it is? I think he offered fifty bucks. But really, how would you feel Jason if John Darnielle wanted you to move out of the spot you got because he didn’t want to look at you? Wouldn’t that leave a sour taste in your mouth? Would you move? Would you move and take the money? Would you take the money then leave because you were unimpressed?
At a show in 1997, someone asked when the next album would be out, and he said “2001… We haven’t made it yet so i think like maybe the end of 98 or something like that?” and I wonder if he knew that the album would be shelved for like 3 or 4 years. At the same show, apparently 2 people demanded their money back because he used the word” fag” and were upset with him, to which Mark said fuck them and it will probably be on the internet. He also went on to talk about a guy who came up to him after a show and wanted him to do a radio thing and say “Hi I’m Mark Kozelek and I’m listening to a fucking radio station that i’ve never heard” and said he didn’t want to but the guys in the band would, so the guy wrote a letter to island and called mark an asshole, and said “then i went to a bar next door and he was hitting on one of our lawrence women”.
It was a good day for Banter, he also said before void:
“This song is also for somebody thats special… I have so many fuckin girlfriends man its just like… Its a good thing that cardigans tour ended so soon, i swear to god i was givin my number out to 13 year old girls and their parents were in the corner and… no i’m not joking, i hope they call me, i’m insecure like that you know, i need that shit.
From a different show i leave you with a live version of Michigan. I feel like this song wasn’t captured well on Old Ramon. Too fast, too country tinged. The way they played it live was dare i say breathtaking without sounding stupid. His voice would soar over it, and was so much more fitting. This is from the same set as the live version of have you forgotten from 2001. This is one of my favourite sets that i have, because the sound and strength of marks voice that night, not to mention the song selection was good.
Its my birthday tomorrow, so somebody shoot me.