the ghost robot
what more can i say?
A couple months back, Jonathan Lethem wrote a great piece on his own history as a listener. A lonely bookish kid, Lethem began devouring literature, art, film and music- eventually becoming a big fan of the Talking Heads. Lethem writes about his blind devotion to his sonic love, telling how they met and fun things they did together, how he poured over liner notes and fell asleep with his headphones on. They were inseperable- either they were making soundtracks to his life or he was living a lifetrack to their sound. Breakups are inevitable in relationships this intense; a candle burning at both ends cannot remain in light. Lethem animates this love brilliantly, more moving than any scene of John Cusack crying and screaming in the rain.
"Losing My Edge/Beat Connection" had me at hello, and since that incredibly powerful double A side, lcd soundsystem has been one of my favorite bands. I only say "one of" because picking a favorite band puts a lot of pressure on the band-fan relationship. I still don't quite understand or enjoy "Tired," and lcd are making music for themselves, not ghosts or robots. No matter the dangers of falling in love, I'm a huge fan of everything on DFA records. After hearing that first song, I became precisely the kind of music geek parodied in "Losing My Edge;" buying vinyl, downloading everything the internet could offer, searching for James and Tim's earlier work, researching their influences, and listening to it all over and over and over again.
Suffice to say, I had really high expectations for the show last Friday. I like M.I.A. quite a bit too, and I'm actually wrote an academic paper on Piracy Funds Terrorism, but lcd was definetly the main attraction. Hollywood industry types and Courtney Love bought up most of the tickets beforehand, so I waited around the El Rey for around two hours. I chatted with some of the other have-nots outside, and met the guy from the cobra snake. Tickets were going for 70-80 bucks, but some kind hearted soul with a handful of extras gave me one for ten dollars. Bless that guy. I got in, standed around hipsters of all ages and levels of self-consciousness. I went over to the merch booth and got a copy of Diplo's Flavela Strikes Back (tracks coming soon). I cheered when Dip came on stage, and tried my best to dance when M.I.A. came out. During the encore, Diplo dropped "Still Tippin'" on the second verse of "Bingo" and flipped back to "Big Pimpin" for the chorus. Although she's got less tracks than a Bradley, Maya's definetly got the bombs, beats, and stage presence covered.
lcd came out and... i don't even know. Every song was better than the recorded versions. Nancy. Tyler. Phil. James. The crowd went nuts and screamed along, and Mr. Murphy was pretty funny up onstage. Improvised song titles, and huge jam on the end of "Yeah." I danced, I moshed, and fell into a trance during "slowdive." They never do an encore, they make a big deal about going through rock show rituations, and then they did muthafucking "Jump into Fire" as an encore. The show was simply transcendent. I can't do it justice, so I'll just scream like a middle school kid with a huge backpack and white sneakers. "Best show ever!"
what the fader said.
music for robots was there.
i'm jealous of cobra snake's backstage action.
mp3s coming soon to the ghost robot.
who was it that we saw that night?
Last Thursday, I saw Spoon at Amoeba Records, and they put on an incredible show. They were out promoting their new album, and were a bit surprised by the huge crowd that showed up.
Spoon's new album reminds me of a pair of perfect vintage jeans, the kind found buried underneath some mill and bought for a thousand bucks by Levi's. The songs on Gimme Ficton start out with a good denim pop structure, like previous masterpieces Girls Can Tell and Kill the Moonlight. The new records adds a little sonic wear-and-tear to an already classic sound; tape machines, hip-hop shouts, and shotgun guitar shots tear and rip the song's fabric in just the right places. These little details make all the difference, giving the album a wonderful lived-in feel. Openner "The Beast and Dragon, Adorded," weaves together lines and images from the rest of the album, working as a great stand along song and an excellent introduction to Gimme Fiction. "I Summon You" is touching love song, while "I Turn My Camera On" winks at 78 Jagger and shows bands like the Killers how to do dance-rock without turning into Duran Duran. From "The Infinite Pet" onwards, Spoon play with rhythm and micro percussion, sounding a bit like lcd soundsystem's "Yr City's A Sucker." Go get Gimme Fiction and show up all those kids in their spotless Evisu and bright green Diesel jeans what rock and roll is all about.
The next morning, Spoon appeared on Morning Becomes Electic. Check out the video.
so much for updating daily
I'm still trying to get my flickr account together- pictures are a must in the blog game these days. I'm also working on my links section. It won't be nearly as extensive as the recent post at Tofu Hut.
Upcoming content: This is so literally last week, but I'd like to add posts about some shows I've seen lately. Tune in here for some words on Spoon, Diplo, M.I.A. and lcd soundsystem. Maybe pictures too.
Welcome to the ghost robot.
I've been reading mp3 blogs for seven months now, so I thought I'd try the whole thing out. This is mostly practice for future blogs, illuminating extentions of earnest print publications and creative collections of varying enthusiasms. Blogs are becoming organziational tools, so I thought I'd better learn about 'em. I'm not quite sure what I want ot write about yet, and I'm not entirely convinced that I'm up for writing at all. I'm bright, but I don't know any of the secret rules revealed in monthly installments of Personal Writing Magazine. Despite my protests, every new venture deserves a confident manifesto, as a California summer expects a Vermont fall.
While it would be great if I could deliver quality music criticism on a regular basis, or post songs that would brighten the halogen glow at your day job, or provide essential mixes that would show that special someone not only how much you care, but also how unselfconscously clever and thoughtful you are, or maybe scour private storage spaces with my trusty calcium dectector to reveal monstrous bones in celebrity closets, or even come up with simple, manageable recipes to impress you friends and guests, I'm not sure any of that will happen. In fact, I'm doubtful.
Instead, I will try to write the thoughts out of my head, adding little to the bounty of the internet, but creating a wonderful void here, right here, behind my eyes. In an obvious irony, this not for you. This is for me. I'm sorry. Blog beginning as break-up.
We are writing to remind ourselves that we are writing, that the keys move, but not of their own volition. We are writing, we are writing, we are writing. We believe in the positive power of practice, repetition and routine. We believe to heal our unbelief; that grand unbelief that the world exhibits cruelty and chaos at every scale, and that the honest production of personal meaning is simply impossible in these conditions. Wait, that just sounded like a prissy actor's lament. Four invisible paragraph marks, and the melodrama has begun. Shanti, shanti, shanti.
Thanks for visiting. We are on this adventure together. Every day has a theme, and today we are celebrating life.