Tuesday, January 31, 2006
I love Cat Power. I think her new album, The Greatest, is one of the best I've heard so far this year. But, she is one of the worst live acts I've ever seen. I use the term "seen" loosely because most of the concert experience involved her freaking out on stage about the brightness of the lights or how much she was sucking that night.
People are saying she's through with that now. And, if the show from Paris circulating the mp3 blogs is evidence, then maybe that's true. But, I'm not buying it. I think it's all a set-up to get us to fork over another 15 bucks for her show and then stand there wishing we were at home listening to her beautiful, haunting cd's instead of staying awake past 1am on a weeknight.
So, here's my prediction of the Cat Power performance at this year's Coachella Festival:
(Cat Power walks on stage, sits at piano. An air conditioner is situated near the piano. It is 106 degrees outside. There are 3,000 people in the crowd, waiting for her to begin)
Can you pull the stage shade down a little? It's too bright up here.
Can you guys please be quiet? I'm about to play
(plays 3 notes on the piano)
I'm sorry guys, I'm really sucking today.
Can you turn the air conditioning vent a little more towards me? Thanks.
And Pull that shade down a little more? Thanks.
(plays 7 notes on the piano. Sings 10 words)
Sorry guys, I'm really playing badly. It must be all this heat and sunlight and fans watching me play.
(Puts personal cooler suit on complete with helmet and runs through the crowd to get a taco, never again to return)
For those of you not familiar with Coachella, it is a 2 day festival in the middle of the desert in Southern California. I had the pleasure of attending in 2004 when the line-up included such acts as The Pixies, Radiohead, The Cure, Air, Belle and Sebastian, Death Cab for Cutie, The (International) Noise Conspiracy, Broken Social Scene, Cursive, Beck, and many many others. Wilco was supposed to play this year, but had to cancel due to Jeff Tweedy's stint in the "hospital".
This year, I think the lineup is really weak. It features some good bands. But, you can also catch most of these bands on tour in your hometown. Now, I know some people will say that the point of Coachella is also to go for the atmosphere and to experience the environment that is the most relaxed group of 50,000 people you'll ever see. But, this year, it's not worth my 500 bucks to go. So, here's the lineup, judge what you will.
SAT APRIL 29
My Morning Jacket
Clap Your Hands Say Yeah!
She Wants Revenge
The Juan Maclean
The Duke Spirit
White Rose Movement
The Living Things
Nine Black Alps
SUN APRIL 30
Yeah Yeah Yeahs
TV On The Radio
Gnarls Barkley (Danger Mouse and Cee-Lo)
Little Louie Vega
The Go! Team
The Magic Numbers
Los Amigos Invisibles
Mates of State
Gabriel & Dresden
Minus the Bear
Be Your Own Pet
Friday, January 27, 2006
Zubbles are COLORED BUBBLES!!!!!!!!!!!!!
This is the neatest invention since Spin Art. I cannot wait until these are available in stores.
I should also add these are being distributed by the same company who also makes ghost bubbles, which also look like alot of fun.
Monday, January 23, 2006
Friday, January 20, 2006
1. Broken Social Scene - Broken Social Scene
I love all the layers of sound on this album. It's just gorgeous. It's also the show I am the most sad that I missed.
2. Wolf Parade - Apologies to the Queen Mary
Some rockin' songs on this one. That's all you need to know
3. M.I.A. - Arular
Sure I feel like that white guy in Office Space when I've got this album cranked in my car and I'm doing my white girl dance, but who cares?
4. Sufjan Stevens - Illinois
Yummy yummy yummy. The music on this album makes me smile.
5. Clap Your Hands Say Yeah - also self titled
I'm so glad these guys sold so many copies of this record with the help of the internet and word of mouth. I also love that the lead singer's voice is slightly annoying.
6. Sleater Kinney - The Woods
Another gem from the rockinest of the all girl rock bands still around today.
7. The Decemberists - Picaresque
Yes, my almost cousin is in the band, but I love this record! Especially the Mariner's Revenge Song
8. Fiona Apple - Extraordinary Machine
I've heard that this version is not as good as the one leaked on the internet. But, I haven't heard that one and think this one sounds mighty fine. "Extraordinary Machine" is one of the cutest songs I've ever heard and makes me want to listen to it while wearing smocked dresses and patent leather Mary Janes, skipping down the sidewalk.
9. The New Pornographers - Twin Cinema
The first four songs are just fantastic. The rest of them are pretty good too.
10. Iron and Wine/Calexico - In the Reins
really nice. better than I thought it would be. also a show I'm sorry I missed.
Bloc Party - Silent Alarm and Animal Collective - Feels
Album I wish I heard in 2005:
Stars - Set Yourself on Fire
Top 10 Concerts of 2005:
1. Paul McCartney at the MCI Center - My Mom cried, I cried, my cousin cried, my Aunt cried. There's just something about Sir McCartney. I really didn't think he was going to get me, but then he sang "I Will" and I lost it.
2. Nine Inch Nails at the MCI Center - Yes I was moving closer and closer to the stage like a teenybopper. Yes, I'm almost 30 years old. But, Trent Reznor looks much better in person than I ever thought he could. And the music was good too.
3. Arcade Fire at the 930 Club - Anytime more than 5 people get on stage and can pull off a good show is a favorite in my book. They were awesome and I'm glad I bought into the hype surrounding them. It was also fun running into them before the show even though I acted like an idiot in front of the lead singer.
4. Sigur Ros at the Strathmore Center for the Arts - I have no idea what this guy is saying, but he has one of the most hauntingly beautiful voices I've ever heard. Thanks Steve and Taryn for this ticket!!!!!!!!!!!
5. Clap Your Hands Say Yeah at the 8x10 - My favorite song from this show was "Satan Said Dance", which unfortunately, is not on the album. Yes, I jumped on this bandwagon too, but it was before npr did a story about them. The crowd at this show was really nice and fun also, which was a bonus.
6. Magnolia Electric Company/Grand Buffett at the Ottobar - Grand Buffett was one of the best opening bands I've seen in a while. The encore with both bands singing "Running with the Devil" was worth staying up until 3am on a weeknight.
7. Slint at the 930 - I was really tired the night of this show and didn't really like it that much after it was over, but liked it alot in retrospect.
8. Decemberists at the 930 - You can listen to this concert at www.npr.org (click on all songs considered). Again, the Mariner's Revenge song was my favorite.
Disappointing shows of 2005:
1. Wrens at the Black Cat - I think they were too drunk, or too nervous, or the crowd would just not SHUT UP, but the sound sucked and the songs didn't sound as good as their last show here.
2. Bloc Party at the 930 - Not worth staying up until 2am on a weeknight. But, "Helicopter" sounded good.
3. Tori Amos at Pier Six Concert Pavillion - I was super excited to meet her before this concert, and super happy I had 4th row seats, but this was not a very good Tori show. I'm sure I'll go again though.
Shows I'm sorry I missed:
1. Broken Social Scene at the 930
2. Calexico/Iron and Wine at the 930
3. Sleater Kinney at the 930
5. Tuscadero at the Black Cat
6. Wolf Parade opening up for Arcade Fire
Thursday, January 19, 2006
Now I know that most of these questions are currently being discussed on various message boards, and my observations seem elementary to those who read these boards frequently. But, I just need to get these out of my head and onto paper (or computer screen, as the case may be).
Here are some of my questions about the show. I am trying to keep a running list:
1. How is Locke able to walk? Is he being controlled by the "others" on the island?
2. Why was Rose's husband in the bathroom and found in a tree buckled into a seat?
3. What happened to Desmond's partner? In fact, where is Desmond?
4. Why was Ethan Rom so freaky looking?
5. Was there even a plane crash? Or were they all programmed into thinking there was a crash?
6. How did the French Woman's boat crash on shore, and yet is currently located about 2 miles inland?
7. Is Walt being kept in an underwater tank?
8. How did Michael gain so much weight by eating fruit and fish for two months?
9. Will Charlie use Heroin again?
10. What's the deal with the computers?
11. Why does the scientist guy look so angry in the sections of spliced film in the "Orientation" video?
12. Were the man and woman on the boat the same people pictured as the scientists in the Orientation video?
13. What is the black smoke security system thing and how does it read people's memories? (i.e. the faces in it)
14. Are the French Woman and Desmond merely people planted there by the "others"?
15. When did Jack get all the tattoos? In the flashback in the episode aired 1/18, he did not have them.
16. Does this show take place in the future?
1. Everyone on the show has a history of some sort of broken relationship. Everyone except Bernard and Rose (that we know of anyway).
2. Both the hatch and the place where the tailies' were hanging out read "Quarantine" on the door.
3. Many things have crashed on this island. I'm guessing more than your regular run-of-the-mill island.
4. The "others" like to steal children.
5. A crapload of people survived this "crash" without much injury.
6. The "others" seem to have constructed defenses on the island like the "security system" and some invisible force field as seen in last night's episode.
7. Locke seems to have insight to the island that most people don't have (Re: vision about Boone's death, and subsequent ability to walk again)
8. There is a huge electromagnetic force around the hatch.
9. Those damn numbers are seen everywhere.
10. In Season 1, there was alot of running through the jungle by the characters. This season, there hasn't been as much running.
11. The date on the xray shown in the episode aired 1/18 read November 16, 2005.
Tuesday, January 17, 2006
So, I figure I'll address something that's beginning to bother me. I'm getting old. Not old in the sense of "it's really difficult for me to get up from my chair now" old, but old as in I'm "that old girl" at concerts.
I've been going to concerts since I was 18. Had my parents let me go to concerts sooner, I'd surely have more under my belt. (Including some of those bands I missed because they broke up before I was 18...like Pavement....thanks Mom.) But, lately, I've been noticing that I'm one of the more senior people in the room.
I guess I should be glad that I have a group of friends who go to shows with me. So, maybe we can all huddle together as the years go by. That would be nice.
Wednesday, January 11, 2006
On Monday, I was at the grocery store, and happened upon what I thought would be an unusual treat, Pete's Tofu-To-Go caramel flavored tofu desserts. I was a vegetarian for 12 years and reverted back to "the dark side" of meat two years ago. So, tofu in general, doesn't frighten me. Like many other Americans after January 1st, I am trying to eat better and was looking for some sweet things at the store that wouldn't break the calorie bank. Plus, spoon was included, which I considered a bonus. Also, they were only a dollar, so I thought there was nothing to lose. Here's a picture of the packaging:
and a close up of the fabulous spoon promise:
And here is an image of said dessert and it's cute little spoon:
I was surprised by the size of the spoon, the handle is just large enough to hold in my hand, but pretty much vanishes upon stirring up the tofu treat. I say "treat", because that is how I thought I'd view this food, until I tasted it.
The first bite filled my tastebuds with an interesting more butterscotch flavor rather than caramel. (Think Wherther's Original) This first bite was immediately followed by the most revolting aftertaste I've ever experienced in my entire life. It was part Splenda, part artificial flavoring, part petroleum product. And it created a film throughout my mouth that stayed until I promptly erased it with multiple gulps of water.
And then, I stirred it. The texture turned from a flan-like light pudding to a half water, half slightly tofu, but clearly something else substance. It created puddles of artificial caramel, but more like butterscotch flavor puddles.
Further stirring reduced the semi-solid consistency to nothing but what I refer to as "tofu turds".
This was possibly the worst food I've ever consumed. I don't know who "Pete" is, but I'm guessing he didn't go to culinary college. Maybe his entire tofu treat was developed by the meat industry to permanently erase the craving for tofu by vegetarians, thus turning everyone back into meat eaters again. Needless to say, I now understand why these were available for "only one dollar!" at my local grocery store.
Thursday, January 05, 2006
The drink not only tasted like a burst of pop rocks fruit juice entering my mouth, it energized me. Now I understand what the "fruit buzz" McDonalds is always talking about. I bought the grapefruit, and then the pear. Pomegranate, you wil be next.
I think this is the beginning of a long friendship.
Tuesday, January 03, 2006
Thank you for ending my year with a bang. Bang, I open my door on New Year's Eve to discover my car stereo has been lifted out of my car. That was a really great ending to a year. It made me feel special.
Thanks also for passing over (like God did to those who spread lambs' blood on their door) my knitting needles in my vintage Shirt Tales lunch box, my 20 dollar colored pencils, my 1/2 used bottle of gesso, and my favorite sandals. I'm sure you could've jammed a few more locks with those knitting needles.
I really hope that you got your drug fix or the new Mariah Carey cd used from Soundgarden with the money you collected from my 5 year old stereo. It must've made a nice end of the year present to whomever bought it. Don't forget to tell them that they have to take the cd out and put it back in if it's mid way through playing a cd when it's cold outside. And, try and explain how to get it from stop displaying "Kate's" whenever it's turned on. I'm sure you can say it came like that from the factory. I hope it's broken now.
It's alright. I really wanted to spend the first 500 dollars I earned in 2006 fixing my lock you jammed and buying a stereo for my car that plays mp3's. instead of my old fashioned one that just plays cd's. So, thanks for that. It was an awesome experience.