Stephin Merritt interviews are so awkward

but I love the man more than most things in life, so y'know, whatevs.


what's the big deal about vampire weekend part II

you know you have a problem when you pay hundreds of dollars on ebay for vampire weekend tickets.

c'mon people!


you can't leave the village in the morning

I am typically NOT a morning person, but for some reason, about once a week I wake up at 6 a.m. and cannot go back to bed. It is that day of the week again, much to my chagrin. While I am up, here are some fun things:

1. New hair from yesterday. It looks much less pink in person:

2. The Magnetic Fields, live on KEXP last week:

The Magnetic Fields: With Whom to Dance?
The Magnetic Fields: The Nun's Litany



21 Love Songs

I posted a few days ago about the TMF tribute album, 21 Love Songs.

A couple of things, since I've had the chance to give it a few spins:

I would say about half of the songs are pretty successful at keeping key aspects of the original while interpreting it according to the band's personal style.

I can't say the same about the other half of the album. There are a bunch of songs that really just destroy the delicacy of these songs and turn them into noise, something that I cannot appreciate, nor do I find particularly graceful or elegant.

I don't mean to sound so disparaging. It is great that these bands have covered TMF and released the album for free. My general feeling is that, for a lot of them, these songs are the best they have ever performed, so it should not be so hard to make what is already near perfection sound good. Luckily, a few of them do, and even at times greatly enhance the experience of listening to these songs.

Here are my favorites. The ones I left out weren't all bad, just mostly uninventive.

The Desperate Things You Made Me Do: Microfilm

A really good electro-pop song made into a really good electro-dance song.

Yeah, Oh Yeah!: Monica y Carlos

Pretty true to the original's sweetness but sped up with a variety of voices to make it interesting. Could have been more creative, but was at least pleasant to listen to.

Why I Cry: Fairmount Fair

It is hard to say anything bad about this one because it is probably my favorite TMF song, but this version especially is totally beautiful, very much enhanced by the chorus of voices, and has excellently re-interpreted percussion.

Reno Dakota: Porches

A surprisingly creative country version, I especially like how slowwwwww it is.

I Think I Need a New Heart: Steinbeck

A pop-punk version that is, ironically, probably the most successful on the whole album and simultaneously original. It totally reinvents the song and kind of reminds me of that Cheap Trick song, "I Want You to Want Me."

When the Open Road is Closing In: Iji

I think I just like this one because it sounds like Matty Popchart. And because no one but me seems to appreciate anything from The Charm of the Highway Strip.

Busby Berkeley Dreams: The American Icons of Rebellion

Busby Berkeley Dreams was probably the saddest of all TMF's songs until now. This one abandons the despair of the original and is kind of cute and poppy, which I don't mind for some reason. Maybe I'm losing some of my cynicism about love.


I may be bitter about not getting to go to SXSW

because of stupid campus visits, but I could really do without hearing about Vampire Weekend ever again. For reals, WHAT is the big deal?

And so that this angry rant post is not completely meaningless, some songs that I will probably listen to over and over and over again from now until infinity.

PALMS (ex-The Finches): Dear Mili
PALMS: Weird Dreams
PALMS: Palms Theme 1

Check out PALMS at their Myspace.


TMF tribute album, new Takeaway Show

21 Love Songs, the Magnetic Fields tribute album, came out a few days ago. Download it here (for free!).

Also, Vincent Moon just did two new Takeaway Shows, this time for Yeasayer. They are probably the best ones yet. Watch them here.

so you heard his promises over and over again

I am really behind on music, reading rss feeds, and posting to del.icio.us these days. So, for now, all I will say is that there is a new Stars in Coma album coming out tomorrow and that you should buy it and listen to it because it will be awesome. The album is called "You're Still Frozen in Time" and you can get it from Music Is My Girlfriend. Plus, check out the album art:

Some songs from the album:
Stars in Coma: People Put Up With A Lot of Shit
Stars in Coma: Invisibility Trick


New releases

Less Than Jake, one of the most nostalgia-inducing bands of their genre, has re-released a bunch of their albums AND the "People's History..." DVD. The albums all come with DVDs of live shows. And it appears that they have adopted an acid-neon aesthetic since I last checked out their myspace. Awesome.

Also, Cloud Cult's new album is out today. You can listen to it streaming or buy it here.

So far my Facebook diet is going exceptionally well. Who knew I could be so productive?!?! Now if only I could stop checking Google Reader every 3 seconds...



Big changes are coming in my life, and I am trying to coax them along by learning to let go of things on which I've become reliant. So, today, I deactivated my facebook account and I am going on a month-long technology fast. I will still check email, though hopefully not as regularly, and I will not be posting very often. I don't imagine that this will be hard, since I post so irregularly now as it is, but it is the principle of the thing.

I'm going to take a break from my laptop, listen to records the old fashioned way (and tapes too, since I just realized I have a bunch of those in a box under my bed).

I am going to watch old TV shows on VHS instead of crappy reality TV that I watch all day for cultural literacy reasons.

I am not going to watch TV while I work on my laptop. I am going to stop charging my ipod.

I am going to roll down my car windows and listen to the sounds of the city instead of Coral Fang on repeat for hours and hours and hours (what I usually do when I feel so unsettled).

Hopefully I will emerge from all of this refreshed, though I'm sure internet detox, like any other kind of detox, is painful and unpleasant.

The Devil is Electric: Relax, It Will Be Over Soon
Ghost Mice: Sing Out