Monday, February 28, 2005 


William B. Swygart is right; the Futureheads' video for "Hounds Of Love" really is great.



The beloved Men In Hats is, it seems, back.


"Pocky is physical proof that I am a man."

I do love Men's Pocky, both because it is delicious and because it is ridiculous.


Geek PhD

This is pretty cool too, and I've been interested in it since I read Farmer's riveting biography of Doc Savage: His Apocalyptic Life. Sometime when I have a month or so of free time I'll check it out.


Good loser

I'm having an exceptional night, and the Oscars were fun too, but what you should be reading about is Halle Berry's appearance at the Razzies. I have a whole new respect for Berry and her combination of class and cojones. Good for her.

Sunday, February 27, 2005 

Save your money

Well, after this, I definitely don't need to see the next Star Wars. Thanks to Patricia who posted it at I'm Huge.

Friday, February 25, 2005 


I really should have held the previous post until I was done with Launch; as it is, let me just add that although I could care less about Bright Eyes' "First Day Of My Life" as a song, but the video (staged or not) is one of the most wonderful things I've seen in a while. For some reason Lauch doesn't have a link to it on his artist page right now, although I imagine it'll show up sooner or later; in any case, you can find it here for now.



Midnight Movies has a basic video up for their single "Mirage", which I think does a better job than just hearing the song alone. Something about Gena Olivier's drumming and singing needs to be experienced visually in addition to aurally; not in some dumb, "oh wow, she can sing and drum at the same time!" sense, but both of them make more sense in the context of the other, or rather in the context of both happening at once. Seeing Olivier and the rest of the band live, I remember wondering why there aren't more singing drummers, as both sounds seemed to profit immeasurably by the association, but hearing the record I realise that's at least partially because when you see her that the interplay between the two (and especially the punctuative nature of her drumming) becomes noticable and even compelling.

Or maybe you'll see the video and think I'm full of shit (for me the video is more than anything else a visual cue to remember what their live show was like, and I would gladly see them again). But you won't know if you don't try.

Meanwhile, the overly hyped and quite annoying looking The Bravery have a few videos up. As much as I think their name is silly, and their dress sense as well, "An Honest Mistake" is actually really fucking good. Unfortunately "Unconditional" isn't very good at all. I'm sure the album will be underwhelming, but one can always hope.

And on a non-Launch but definitely music related note; in the "original documentary" on the DVD of The Filth And The Fury, the singer for the U.S. Bombs refers to the "simplexity" of the Ramones. I don't know whether he meant to coin a neologism, but I think it's perfect (and probably applicable to other bands).

Thursday, February 24, 2005 

The Godless constitution

Good article here on the religious principles of the Founding Fathers of America. Now could we please stop having people talk about the US' "Christian heritage"? Because that's bullshit, it's always been bullshit, and it's being manipulated for less than savoury purposes.


Oh god yes

Trailer for A Scanner Darkly. It looks incredible. Richard Linklater, if you fuck this up, you're dead to me. But it looks like he hasn't...


"Your echolocation cannot defeat my musk!"

This article made me laugh harder than I have in something like three months. You really have to read the whole thing.

Actually, read this first for Etro context. Then go to town. If you're not gasping for breath by page ten of the first link here... well, you're not me, anyway.

Wednesday, February 23, 2005 

"I have no taste for either poverty or honest labour, so writing is the only recourse left for me."

Whatever else you want to say about Hunter S. Thompson, he gave good quote.


I'm intrigued

Actually, I already wanted to see Ong Bak, but this review makes me really interested.


Private spaces

I think I might agree with Andrew Sullivan. To some degree, anyway; when I take a long trip I always whip out the headphones, but that's once I'm ensconsed on the plane/bus. It's just too much hassle to get things rigged up every time I'm walking somewhere for ten minutes.

I am glad Sullivan notes in passing some of the good things about this sort of phenomenon (and glad he extends his point to more than just the iPod), and think ultimately the answer is in balance. Of course. I always say that, don't I?


Book, cover, kettle, pot, black, etc, etc...

So there's this guy who goes to the gym at roughly the same time as me. Huge guy, the type who sets the machines to their heaviest weight and then gets some extra weights to put on them so they're heavy enough for him to use (I'm not making that up). The guy who, when a machine went a little wonky and no-one who works there was present, I naturally asked for help (and of course, he knew what to do). As with anyone I see regularly without knowing or talking to them, certain assumptions eventually formed in my mind.

Now, I didn't think he was stupid; it's a school gym, anyone as buff as he is who's using it must be some sort of academic. I didn't even assume he was a coach or a Human Kinetics guy or anything like that. But I still was still more than a little shocked in the change room today to hear him discoursing lucidly (and in my opinion at least, correctly) on the analytic/continental split and the limits of Nietzsche's relativity.

I guess because philosophy is such a small speciality it always surprises me that others are in it, even on the interest level. I think I assumed this guy was in history or something, oddly enough, but it never would have occured to me to guess philosophy.

And he's probably not in philosophy per se since I've never seen him at the philosophy department. But hearing the discussion was weird the same way it was weird overhearing part of The Princess Bride and realising they were discussing Socrates.

Of course, I don't think I look what people assume a philosophy major looks like either.

Tuesday, February 22, 2005 

Canada represent

MF Doom likes Alpha Flight. That's pretty cool.

(Thanks to Scott McKeating for the link...)



The Onion's AV club, or more specifically Tasha Robinson, gets it. Great picture caption, too. I refuse to watch that fucking movie.


Transparent, precise, muscular prose

Unexpectedly moving and edifying article at the New Yorker about their Grammarian, Miss Gould.


Free music

In addition to the belowmentioned Laurent Garnier review, today sees me doing another turn on the Stypod.


Thoughts on Silent Alarm and others

I've heard it a few times now, and if it grows on me even a little, I imagine I'll buy it at some point. Contra Nick and his pal Karim I didn't love it immediately, and still don't love it fiercely, although I imagine a sudden conversion is still possible. It's got a hard core of a half dozen songs I already love, so I think I'll probably come around. (For the curious: "Like Eating Glass", "Banquet", "This Modern Love", "Pioneers", "So Here We Are" and "Luno")

In some ways it's like the LCD Soundsystem record, though, which I also like (cheers to Todd Hutlock for the copy); I like it, but not as much as others and feel a bit left out as a result. Nick and Karim discuss how awesome it is to (and I quote) "hear something new and go HOLY SHIT THIS IS GREAT", and I haven't really done that recently, or at least not in the same way; the most recent was the Futureheads, and while I think that record is genuinely great, there was no thrill of discovery. Then again, the last time I really felt that thrill I was sixteen and dicovering this vast underworld of music that's out there, so maybe it isn't possible anymore. Hmm.

Actually, I lie, and in a really stupid, obvious way, too; my man Jens was absolutely an example of this. I picked his record from the Ontarion's filing cabinet of promo because he looked nicely goofy on the cover of it, fer chrissakes. Here I figured I'd be renouncing the above dire prediction in weeks or whatever, and instead I find out I'm wrong immediately.

Still, as good as All The Plans Resting is, there's been little so far this year to excite me (last two weeks = case in point: fine records by Jeff Parker and (up today) Laurent Garnier, but nothing that's really got the blood boiling). Of course it's only February, so maybe I should be more excited? Or maybe my mind is just working differently.

It does feel the last few weeks like all these electronic records I bought ages ago are finally making sense, the way I always kind of liked ...I Care Because You Do and then didn't listen to it for months and listened to it again and BAM I love it. Like maybe those records take time to percolate through my brain the way rock records like Bloc Party's usually don't. Susumu Yokota's Grinning Cat, which I already kind of liked, has been glued to my stereo all week. And not just because I can read philosophy to it. I think I probably overuse the word "gorgeous" with records, but it's my go-to word for those sounds I find beautiful on just a purely sonic level. "Lapis Lazuli" and maybe "King Dragonfly" will make their way into mixes soon.

Maybe one day I'll finally "get" jazz?


Top notch

As mentioned earlier, if a bit tangentially, I stumbled upon Ben's absolutely fantastic blog this afternoon whilst googling myself. He'd actually mentioned me a few times, which is still quite a lovely surprise, but much more importantly than that he puts out a shedload of really good content. Normally I don't go into the archives for long-established blog, but I spent a couple hours doing just that whilst on the phone.

Unfortunately at some point (which I can't be arsed to find now) he decrees that all those who don't love Daydream Nation should be summarily executed or similar. Well, that's me gone then.

Monday, February 21, 2005 

Oops (I'm the only one who cares, anyway)

Circa last Friday, Fractionals is two years old.

No applause, please, just throw money.


Please, ignore context (on multiple fronts)

Somehow I don't think I'll be losing any sleep due to the fact that these people have decided all of Stylus is awful for this review. I personally have very little opinion on Amos' work, and I can see a space for reasoned criticisms of Dom's line (although I have no interest in making it myself); that forum is not exactly full of it, though.

IIIIeeeeeEEEEEEEEE! Someone has said something flippant and cruel about the musician we have decided is a quasi-religious figure in our lives! Swarm!

All I'm saying is: There's a reason Tori Amos fans have a reputation as batshit insane. I feel bad for those who are not (including some friends of mine).



To be investigated/bookmarked when I get home:

Edited to add: Every so often I run into a blog where I'm linked, which is always a nice little jolt of surprise. If you've linked me and I haven't linked you, please drop me a line to let me know, as I'd probably like to.


Irregular Google check dept.

So unlike last time, when I held four of the five top results for "Ian Mathers", this time I have only two, and those are two and five. Which you know, is interesting but I can't say I really care. What does kind of bug me is that to get to this page you actually have to use "ian mathers fractionals" as a search string, and even then I'm four down. WTF mate?


Too weird to live, and too rare to die.

Hunter S. Thompson is dead, alas. K let me know last night, but I wanted to wait until there was a bit of detail to link to, but even this morning there isn't much out there.

Sunday, February 20, 2005 

I'm so productive

New journal entry up, in full prose.

Saturday, February 19, 2005 

He is kind of a dick, you know

The various iterations of the whole "Superman is a dick" thing are all pretty amusing, but the best one I've seen so far is, mainly because it has another section called "Stupid Comic Covers" that widens the focus a bit.

This one is my favorite so far, just because really, you can't beat "Ride, Bat-Hombre, Ride!" as a title.


Aural massage

So true.

Thursday, February 17, 2005 

The Floating World: Aye Today

Songs sung out of key
Reminds me that I'm free

So something's happened. No, back up, that's not quite honest. You've done something (or not done something), and you fucked up. Leave aside for a minute the infinitely complicated causal matrices that may or may not pertain to the real world worked up by various philosophies, which are not dodges of responsibility but rather more subtle ways to conceive of existence; we are in the real, immediate world, and you fucked up.

That's bad enough. But there's another person involved (family, if you must know, but I'm not being any more specific than that) and people always make things unpredictable, to be kind. You know you've fucked up, you've spent quite a bit of time thinking about it, talking about it, worrying about it. For various reasons. Some personal (this particular fuck up is one you've never done before, and so of course there is the hurt pride of no longer being able to say you haven't done it), some of course not (how is the other person going to take it?). It's already a heady mix, regret and shame and guilt and sadness all stirred in.

And then the other party has to poke at it.

[Oh, go on, write me a long letter telling me that I can't read others' minds, that what I get out of what someone tells me or writes me may not have been put there intentionally by the other person, that what I get so worked up over may not be there at all. I'll ignore you - whether intended or not, it is there, because that's what I read from it. Like I said, this is family; I may be misinterpreting things, but I don't fucking think so. And even if I am, too bad; the damage has been done.]

So in addition to the aforementioned bad feelings, you've now got anger, hurt, and all their little cousins coming to stay. And it did sort of come out of the blue - the kind of occurance that takes your still-new day and slams a sledgehammer into the base of its spine. You've been reading too much Merleau-Ponty (stay with me now; it's a theoretical situation, remember); you can't help but think how in a very real way your world is entirely different five minutes before this happened, how particular areas of your life usually defined as safe, even friendly (email, phone mail) have now taken on an aura of danger; you cringe every time the phone rings.

Because, of course, you responded. Instantly, and then again five minutes later. You are what you could call "highly strung", have been accused only half-jokingly of being a "drama queen", and in any case have always been volatile in some ways; you used to have anger issues, now managed, and even without that you've done your share of things you've regretted. By your own standards you did quite well this time; the word "fuck" may have been used a few times, but you think you avoided any actual insults, and mainly avoided things you'll regret later.

But that, of course, doesn't make your feelings any less complex; all day long doubt and anger and regret and shame and guilt and resentment and sadness and dread and general low grade angst slalom 'round your subconscious and poke out into your conscious thought ever few minutes. And overlaying all is a bone-deep sense of weariness and almost fatalism. You've had conflict before in your life, both family and otherwise and it always ends the same way, with resolution, and you wish you could just skip to that step. Especially with family. But other people are involved, and other people always make thing interesting. You are stubborn, and so is the other party, and you do think that your anger and your hurt are not entirely baseless.

Oh, sure, the anger is partly a relief, it lets you be the wounded party, lets you avoid thinking about your error (which, just by the by, you do feel genuinely horrible about and have tried to apologize for), and generally is just wonderful for being something other than the guilt and regret to think about. And truth be told, what you're most hurt/angered by is the implicit charge that not only did you fuck up, but you didn't notice fucking up, that you don't care you fucked up. Anyone can fuck up, but that kind of implication is saying things about your character that you do not think are true.

Feeling so strong that I can't carry on

But mostly, as we said, you just feel tired. You regretted the error the minute you discovered it, and it's not as if you regret it more now that this has happened - you couldn't! But you're stubborn, and being in the wrong about one thing has never made you able to take this sort of accusation.

So, let's do the toting up, we've got:
hurt pride
hurt feelings
relief (around the edges)

And I mean, we could go on, but I think that gives you the idea. Do you have the song for this? The song that would reflect how you feel, how you hope to feel, what you hope will happen? Do you have the song that would bolster you, convince you you're in the right? Do you have the song that would break you down, convince you you were wrong?

I don't. And to tell you the truth, I'm not interested in any of those songs.

But let's go back to you. You have a committment the night this happens, a meeting to attend, and while you don't really want to go you're not going to skip out on your responsibilities just because you're having a shitty day. So you go. And unexpectedly, it's wonderful; not everyone shows up so the rest of you sit around and joke for a long while, and the meeting is quick and smooth and procedure is obeyed in spirit if not in decorum and letter, and as you're walking out of the building you realise that you actually haven't thought about it for an hour, and there's a song playing in your head. No, there's one part of a song playing in your head.

There's nothing wrong with the verses of "Aye Today" by the Delgados, not really, but in comparison to the real glory of the song they sound like spindly uber-indie. It's better when the chorus hits,

I've always stated of things overrated
A curse or a blessing rate high

Alun and Emma singing along like it's the cheeriest thing in the world. And it is, as the flute and strings and guitars and drums and bass and keyboards come together in one big mass. This line is from a negative NME review, but it describes The Great Eastern very well if you ignore the pejoratives:

"Every graceful shoot here is instantly fenced off by woodwind, then locked in a great cat's cradle of fussy arrangements."

But the real glory of the song takes place at 3:07, as they sing

Why all the grief for a life full of peace?
If you will ask me I'll say aye today

And then they leave the song to fend for itself for almost two minutes. The church bells are tolling, and then the flute takes lead and it goes up and up and up and it sounds like the flautist is struggling to keep at the front of the sound like they're not quite able to take full breaths as they play but it goes up and it leads the song out of the room as it fades away. It is absolutely the most uplifting music I can think of, and I didn't summon it as I stepped out of the UC to wait for the bus in the frigid winter air, it was just there. It was just there and that has to count for something, and Alun never quite clears up what he's waiting to be ask, but he says "aye" anyway, and it's the biggest yes possible, it's a yes to everything, and that grim knowing that things will be alright eventually is transformed into the feeling that things are already alright, that things will get sorted out.

And how they will, and how fast, I still don't know, but I do feel better. I don't feel good, not quite, but the acid in my stomach has receded, and head doesn't hurt quite so much and I don't wince when I check my email. And if I didn't already have enough reasons to love the Delgados fiercely, I have another one now.

Wednesday, February 16, 2005 

O Canada

[Paul Martin] invoked two former prime ministers who protected human rights in the past: Progressive Conservative John Diefenbaker and Liberal Pierre Trudeau. And he insisted that Bill C-38 protects religious freedoms while ensuring minority rights.

"Put simply, we must always remember that separate but equal is not equal," he told the House of Commons, rejecting the proposal that homosexual couples be limited to civil unions.

Of his political foes, whom Martin said have been trying to convince Canadians that the country could revert to the traditional definition of marriage without invoking the notwithstanding clause, he said: "They are insincere, they are disingenuous and they are wrong."

He said invoking the notwithstanding clause to remove minority rights from gays and lesbians "would set us back decades as a nation... Our rights must be eternal, and not subject to political whim."

Obviously I don't know what's in the man's heart, but as I read this, for the first time in this whole mess I feel a little proud that Paul Martin is our Prime Minister, despite the fact I voted NDP. I'm feeling very patriotic right now, in any case.

Tuesday, February 15, 2005 

Aw, shit

Here I thought he just wasn't updating, but Rollie Pemberton had just moved. So I missed a few songs, but it's still one of my favorite MP3 blogs out there. And if you get a chance to hear his stuff (specifically "Oliver Square", but I imagine it's all good), you should. It's very good.


Sign me up

Abstinence based sex education turns a new corner.


Geek anthropology

It's a few years old, but this essay on geek social fallacies is far from out of date. Sadly.

[Also, in my own personal taxonomy these people would be referred to as "nerds", but the points still stand. From another article on the site I get this:

"When I say geeks, I'm using the term in its non-pejorative sense as a blanket term for all those good folks who dig various forms of speculative fiction (fantasy, science fiction, comics, roleplaying games, genre movies, etc.)"]


It's funny, only it's not

So John Rogers posted something going "Holy crap, there are a lot of you, aren't there? Here, go look at these" after Warren Ellis flooded his blog (not by pointing to the post I linked to, I should mention). While poking around some of those things Rogers threw up links to, I came upon this, which is pretty funny. And true. But the thesis that all fundamentalisms are essentially the same is a pretty good one. And then you should go to the link he refers to, which is no longer funny. But it is very good, very interesting and thought provoking. My favorite bit:

"One scholar suggested that it's helpful to understand fundamentalism as religious fascism, and fascism as political fundamentalism."

Monday, February 14, 2005 

Reasoned, rational response

I wanted to say something about the fact that various conservative US groups have been trying to influence the current debate on gay marriage in this country. But all I could think of was random profanity. Luckily John Rogers has done it for me. With profanity, mind you. I'm not as sanguine about Canada's prospects for the next hundred years, but other than that I think he's got it.


Welcome back

It's good to see And You Call Yourself A Scientist updating again, especially when the review is as good as that one is.


Reality is boring

CSICOP deflates another interesting myth here; but let's face it, the interest in that article is at least half in what the stories about the Holy Grail/Priory of Sion etc as opposed to the mundane truth. I'm not knocking CSICOP, I think it's important to know the truth, but I hope the Priory continues to have an active fictional life.



Joe Strummer gets a train named after him. That's pretty cool.


"You'll thank me when you share my politics!"

Qwantz is always brilliant (seriously, why don't you read it?), but they've got my favorite Valentine's Day comic ever, to boot.


Busy day

Today at Stylus I've got not only a review up, but a piece on Wilco's Summerteeth as well.

Sunday, February 13, 2005 

Porn and cake

New journal entry up.


Nothing new under the sun.

I had been kind of half-planning to write up something on Isn't Anything, but while looking for something for the journal entry I'm writing, I ran into this, and now I'm glad I hadn't got to it yet. Simon Reynolds both goes over the two things that most struck me in a way I wanted to write about (the way "Feed Me With Your Kiss" seems vampiric, the closeness of much of this music) and said lots more besides. And all much more eloquently than I could manage. And, of course, he said it all before I'd even heard of the band.


Going, going...

I think Jer was right when he called it, but in any case the headline here is just so dispirited. Poor hockey fans.

Thursday, February 10, 2005 

No, I didn't watch the Superbowl

Reading the full list of complaints to the FCC last Sunday is pretty entertaining. It does make you wonder how many of the complainants were being satirical, though.

Wednesday, February 09, 2005 

In the spirit of the day

A friend of mine from high school, Robby McLeod, had this to say in passing about Valentine's Day:

"i have a feeling valentines day was cooked up from the people who relaised that the most amount of spousal abuse happens on super bowl sunday, and that the price of roses is double because the rose bowl uses something ridiculous like 20 million roses just a few weeks before, so the supplies are limited.

interesting that football and a hallmark holiday could have such close ties."

That made me chuckle.

Tuesday, February 08, 2005 

The apocalypse and the environment

I imagine this might have been making the rounds, but if you haven't read "There Is No Tomorrow" by Bill Moyers yet, please go here and do so. Login using "username" and "password", or if they don't work go to Bugmenot for another login and password. The Grist article Moyers mentions is here, and reader feedback (including some valuable context on Watt's comments, the most terrifying part of the article for me) is here.


The Floating World: She Will Only Bring You Happiness

Yeah, it's been too long. But now my boss has given me the last half hour of my shift to do whatever and fucking Maroon 5 are on the radio ("This Love" is ignorable, and "She Will Be Loved" has a certain loony glory, but "Sunday Morning" is my least favorite song of the year so far, although Lenny Kravitz's "Lady" is in the running), so I'll get this done now.

Way, way back when Mclusky announced they were breaking up I said I wanted to write about this one, and I did, but schoolwork intervened. But I just did another one-pager on Merleau-Ponty last night and don't have my texts here anyway, so what the hell. I don't feel bad for giving their last album such a hard time (I still feel the same way about it), but I guess I do regret not purchasing it (which I didn't for the most superficial of reasons; it didn't have a tracklisting on the packaging, which I hate). I don't think that would have made any sort of difference, but... I don't know. I've never bought anything of Mclusky's, Do Dallas was a promo from the Ontarion, and I feel bad about that. Never saw them live either, although apparantly Andy Falkous is going to be continuing to do stuff, so maybe I'll kind of get a chance.

And I'm really glad he is continuing on, because as much as I don't love The Difference Between Me And You Is I’m Not On Fire, the bits I did like were tremendously exciting. Especially "She Will Only Bring You Happiness", the video for which, I reiterate, you should check out (in "downloads", and the one for "To Hell With Good Intentions" is worthwhile as well). I can't express how exciting it was to hear Mclusky go for something (relatively) poppy and open-hearted and I dunno, oddly cinematic and succeed totally and still sound like Mclusky (and I don't just mean the closing round of "Our old singer is a sex criminal"). Of course, this was partly due to a mishearing on my part.

During the refrain, see, Falkous sings what I thought was "All the city was cold, cold" and then "She started wondering, where is the profit here?" Combined with the title I thought the song was about a guy who is basically a fuckup who finally winds up in a decent relationship; but of course on some subconscious level he's terrified of success and he fucks things up again, and well, "She started wondering, where is the profit here?"

There's only one problem: The line is actually "All the sea was coal, coal". Which I guess you could assume is metaphorical and really abstract, but feels to me just like the song is much more prosaic than I'd thought. And the more I listen to it, the more yeah it's about the city, not about the guy. And it's still a wonderful song, it's not as if I like it any less.

But I'll admit, whenever I hear "Note to self: Be erect by half-past ten" I start thinking about that imaginary couple. That's the song I'm hearing. And that's the direction I wonder if Falkous will follow up on. Great song, in either case.


I love Warren Ellis

You should take him with a grain of salt, of course, but whether you like organic food or not, this is pretty fucking funny.


Hope springs eternal

You never know, it could actually stick this time.


Get your fucking hands off of her

It's disgusting that groping on Japanese subways has reached record highs, but a few things from this article offer hope; firstly that the number is so high because Japanese women are less willing to tolerate this crap, and that effective remedies are being found and used (it's kind of pathetic when you need to segregate your subway passengers by gender, but if it works it works), and that there's finally a non-perverted use for camera phones.


Album test

So while I was at the Ontarion before coming in to work this afternoon I got to hear most of Yoshimi Battles The Pink Robots (from the beginning through "Do You Realize??"). It did nothing for me. So at least my assumption based on my reaction to The Soft Bulletin proved warrented. I wouldn't mind checking out their earlier, weirder stuff (particularly the albums with Jonathan Donahue, even though I'm staying away from The Secret Migration, thank you very much), but for the last two albums I really only like "What Is The Light?", "Race For The Prize" and of course "Buzzin'".

Monday, February 07, 2005 

Work radio dept.

So this afternoon amidst all the dross (and fucking Roch Voisine, whom I have hated since about grade four) we did have a few bright spots: Gary Numan's "Cars" and Gwen Stefani's "What You Waiting For" (with all the "ho"s bleeped out, sadly). Made things a little more bearable, anyway.


The front lines

Martin Amis on life in Colombia. This is the sort of thing I mean when I mention how priveleged I am to have the problems I do.


Working like Trojans

Neat little interview in the Toronto Star with Alastair Summerlee (our esteemed President) on the Rae Report. Now that we know some details of the report, we can confirm some of Summerlee's guesses.

When I say I hope the government finds the funds to go along with the Rae Report's recommendations, don't think I'm too biased; I'm almost done my degree, after all, so this would be helping the people who come after me. A kudos to Bob Rae for doing something to offset the hash he made of being our Premier.


I'm totally predictable, I know

Readymade's superb, flawless (as far as I'm concerned) All The Plans Resting is our album of the week.


Listening frequencies

After having listened to both while reading Phenomenology Of Perception in fits and starts, I think Andrew Unterberger may be right; I do enjoy Isn't Anything more than Loveless as a whole, and I do listen to the former more often. Although I certainly love the songs on the latter (and as Andrew notes, the closing combination of "What You Want" and "Soon" are as sublime as anything else you can think of), as an album (whisper it) Loveless doesn't work terribly well.

Which is kind of confusing, really, because the tracks taken individually are so powerful. I think Andrew's thesis, that there's too much of the same thing, has something to do with it, but as I've been reading Merleau-Ponty I'm beginning to think there are existential reasons as well. I can't put my finger on that more precisely, nor would I subject you to it if I could.

I do have limits on what I'll ramble on about in this space, believe it or not.

Sunday, February 06, 2005 

That time of the week

New journal entry up.

Saturday, February 05, 2005 

Uh oh

Alcohol apparantly causes nearly as many deaths as tobacco. That's not good.

Friday, February 04, 2005 

Fuck you, humanity

Well, today I got my first spam in the classic "Nigerian banker" style that capitalizes on the tsunami. Goddamnit.


And now for something etc etc

K has given her blog a makeover. New title and everything. Which means she's posting again. Yay!


Words fail me

I'd heard a little about Houston, reviewed one of his singles for the singles column at Stylus. Didn't think much of him - not bad, not good, just another R&B singer. Then he gouged his eye out. And now he's "closer to God". Somebody get this guy into therapy, quick.

Thursday, February 03, 2005 

Don't hate

I'm pretty sure this will become an object of fun, but it shouldn't. Whatever you think of the song in question, it's clear the kid loves it, and that he's having a lot of fun. And until it glitches and the sound and image go slightly out of synch, it's actually really impressive seeing him mimic everything so precisely.

You go, "Fat Dutch Kid". Sing your crazy little song.


The ethics of linking

Tyler has an interesting post up about this topic. Which I'm linking to. Infinite recursion beckons.

Seriously though, he lays out the main points on either side pretty nicely. I agree with him, partly because working in the media has convinced me that you absolutely not pretend that you are responsible for every interpretation of what you put out there.


So many wasted hours

The Onion gets it right again. Man, fuck work.


An Ed Wood for our times

Uwe Boll is completely batshit insane. I might have thought they were exaggerating, but Ben saw Alone In The Dark and told me about it.

Edit: Upon reflection, I don't think the title of this post is very fair to Ed Wood, who at least was trying, you know?


The children are our future

Oh really? We may be in trouble, then.

Wednesday, February 02, 2005 

Because you stood still

Back to Guelph now; Low were great, although they played enough new material that a significant number of people left. They probably came for Pedro the Lion anyways, who were decent but I'm not particularly a fan. I had enough time to write down the set list, and I got all three of them to autograph it, since that's how we do in Fanboy Land. The set:

Death Of A Salesman
Just Stand Back
(That's How You Sing) Amazing Grace
When You Walked
Everybody's Song
Silver Rider
Cue The Strings
Broadway (So Many People)
I Remember
When I Go Deaf


"Monkey" and "Just Stand Back" were admittedly a bit rough, but this was the first night of the tour. But the new material was mostly really successful; "Everybody's Song" was awesome, "Cue The Strings" was done acoustically and was still really good (if a bit more obviously melodically indebted to "Will The Night" and "Pissing" was fucking transcendant (as was "(That's How You Sing) Amazing Grace"). Shame was rather magical, and I can see how a whole set of that sort of thing would be great; but I can't say I'm sad that's not what they did. I was already of the opinion that The Great Destroyer was going to be finding space on my year-end list, but I'm a little more certain now.

Oh, and K got a really great t-shirt; It's got a few little drawings of horses and says "I'm not interested in cool. I'm interested in beautiful." Technically a Low shirt, but it doesn't have the band's name on it at all.

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About me

Ian Mathers is a freelance writer whose work has appeared in Stylus, the Village Voice, Resident Advisor, PopMatters, and elsewhere. He does stuff and it magically appears here.

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