Sunday, May 28, 2006


Yesterday I had a dream during a quick cat nap between shifts at work. I found this new store where college kids take old crap to sell off for quick cash. They had furniture, old clothes, and junk like that. They also had a used CD section where I found an absolute gold mine of stuff. I remember buying up some old Flaming Lips singles for like $2 a pop. I was also able to buy all of Andrew Bird's albums for just a few bucks.

I woke up with about an hour to kill before I had to be back to work. Thinking the dream was a sign to hit up the used section at Plan 9, I went in thinking I'm going to find just tons of stuff.

Well, I didn't. In fact, that's about the thinest I've ever seen their collection.

I did buy up Helio Sequence's Love and Distance.

Helio Sequence is one of like 8000 bands Isaac Brock helped on Sub Pop. This one's a little different than most of those bands. The sound is essentially analog electronic.....kinda like the Flaming Lips. Plenty of keyboard samples and harmonic vocals. In the end, it's a little flat.

I keep having a reoccuring dream that I'm searching for the greatest Italian restaurant hidden inside a big skyscraper. Maybe next time I won't jump to conclusions with my dreams.

Tuesday, May 23, 2006


Oh, sweet hangover, please go away. My head hurts too much for rational thought right now.

At least it was a fun night! Got to hang out with a lot of friends I don't normally get to because of our hours. I'm really paying for it today though.

Monday, May 22, 2006

Catch Up

Been very busy lately, but fun busy instead of just work busy (even though I've been work busy too). Saturday I kinda met ex-Redskin Darrell Green. He was doing an autograph signing at a nearby mall. Went with some friends, but found that the rules were a little complicated on getting an autograph. Couldn't bring something to get signed, had to buy a picture for $10, could only get picture signed at certain times, had to win an auction of signed stuff. Weird. He is possibly running for office in Virginia, so I guess he can be a little jackass and people expect it. Still I did get to stare at him while we drank beer.

After that we went to see the Stokes. They were playing across town and one of our friends was already going. Tickets were cheap so may as well. Show wasn't too bad. Elephant Sixers, Apples in Stereo opened. They were pretty good, but I didn't pay too close attention. The Strokes themselves were pretty good. Maybe not the most professional band, but I didn't expect that. Julian was mumbling all night, forgetting lyrics, and even forgot who the opening acts were. Nice. Still the show was worth the money.

Yesterday was nice too. After work (and a quick nap) I went for a great meal at the Lebanese Food Festival (the spinach pie and hummus were divine) and spent a couple of hours at the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts. Pretty fun, but after getting around four hours of sleep over three days I ended the day with a great eleven straight hours of sleep. A "no Da Vinci Code" weekend, hooray for me!!

Made two nice new album purchases last week.

Mountain Goats - Babylon Springs EP

Nice little EP to keep me busy while waiting for the new release. "Alibi" took me a few listens to catch on to, but I love that song now. Solid release, but not as strong lyrically as most of Darnielle's stuff. This EP is an Australian release and I think the only place domestically to get it is through Moops Music.

Silver Jews - Bright Flight

God I love the Silver Jews. I'm still working on my back collection, but I haven't heard anything weak from them. For my fellow Mizzou folk, they remind me a bit of the Incontinentals. Oh and why didn't I know until recently that the band is originally from Charlottesville?

Anyhoo, buy me some time before the birthday party I'm going to tonight:

Current track count: 4790

1. Mountain Goats - "Balance" (All Hail West Texas)

2. Matt Sweeney/Bonnie "Prince" Billy - "What Are You?" (Superwolf)

3. Flaming Lips - "The Sound of Failure" (At War with the Mystics)

4. Cake - "The Distance" (Fashion Nugget)

5. Uncle Tupelo - "Nothing" (Still Feel Gone)

6. Get Up Kids - "The Breathing Method" (Eudora)

7. Ryan Adams - "City Rain, City Streets" (Love is Hell, Pt. 2)

8. Franz Ferdinand - "Tell Her Tonight" (s/t)

9. Silver Jews - "Sometimes a Pony Gets Depressed" (Tanglewood Numbers)

10. Blur - "Jets" (Think Tank)

11. Superchunk - "Green Flowers, Blue Fish" (Here's Where the Strings Come in)

How does my player know how to follow up a St. Louis band (Uncle Tupelo) with a Kansas City band (Get Up Kids). Amazing! I don't listen to Uncle Tupelo much anymore, but when I hear something from Still Feel Gone I really flashback to senior year of high school.

Sunday, May 14, 2006

Upcoming (Dry Season)

Now that the new Danielson and Grandaddy have been released, I look ahead to see what is coming up. Not much for a while, I see. Still there are plenty of nice releases coming up by the end of the year.

I'm a little bored right now. Joy and I were trying to get some folks together for dinner, but no luck. Plus there appears to be loads of rain coming in soon. I'll post my shopping list as I listen to Half-Handed Cloud's Halos & Lassos (even though I'm singing the Silver Jews' "Sleeping is the Only Love" to myself.....may have to switch over to Tanglewood Numbers next).

The only thing I'm getting excited this month is some new stuff from Robert Pollard. Parts 40-42 are now shipping on his site:
40. The Takeovers - Turn to Red
41. Psycho and the Birds - All That is Holy
42. Keene Brothers - Blues and Boogie Shoes

VERY slow month. The only thing that I'm considering is a new instrumental soundtrack from Portastatic (Who Loves the Sun) on the 6th.

Okay here is where things start to look up, starting on July 4th when the final volume of Johnny Cash's American Recordings series is released (American V: A Hundred Highways). I was under the impression that Unearthed was to be the final release, but I'm happy to be wrong.

One week later (July 11th) is the release of Sufjan Steven's The Avalanche. I am very excited.

Another week after that (July 18th) is Golden Smog's first release in eight years (Another Fine Day). Nice.

Just announced Friday, Thom Yorke is releasing a solo album on July 11th (The Eraser). July is going to be a great month.

Not much so far to get me overly excited. Matt Friedberger (The Fiery Furnaces) is releasing solo debut. Plus new stuff from Lambchop and Cursive. Nothing great but I'll likely check them out, unless there are more exciting things announced.

New Yo La Tengo on the 12th!! Plus it's called I Am Not Afraid of You, and I Will Beat Your Ass!! Yeah!!

Also new stuff from M. Ward and the Black Keys. Eh, maybe.

I know this is a long ways off, but Robert Pollard announced another solo album called Normal Happiness for the 10th.

Still Waiting
The only other stuff I know are coming out this year is a new solo album from Jason Molina and a new Magnolia Electric Co., but no date set yet. Maybe a solo album from Britt Daniel too. Almost forgot, a new Mountain Goats this fall. Anything I'm missing?

Friday, May 12, 2006

Tax Cut....Wow Thanks

Must an election year when the House passes yet another worthless tax cut.

My average yearly savings? $2-$46.

Jeez, what will I do with all that extra money?? Maybe I'll put it in my 401K so I can now retire when I'm 113 instead of 118.

Thursday, May 11, 2006

Five Stars and Two Thumbs Up

Pretty good release day on Tuesday. I had the decision between new albums from Danielson and Grandaddy. I was more excited about the new Danielson, but I would pick up the new Grandaddy if it was less money. Both were the same price. I bought Danielson's Ships.

The extended Danielson Famile is largely what I've been listening to (Sufjan Stevens, Half-Handed Cloud.....still haven't picked up any Deerhoof). However, the whole Danielson Famile extends way past these folks and peaks out around 40 people. Listening to Ships, it's apparent how many people it takes to make something like this.

Ships is brutally complex and difficult to listen to. Songs change as sudden as a car crash, no need for a bridge. Just as a song begins to take shape, it collapses in on itself. This is one of the most self-destructive and chaotic albums I've heard in a very long time. Kinda like Blueberry Boat.

All this chaos is what makes Ships so brilliant to listen to. Even after listening to it extensively for three days, I still can't predict where it's going. The album builds up so much, it's like going up a roller coaster for almost 45 minutes straight. Never a dull moment. Plus, Daniel Smith is so much fun to listen to. His screeching echos the crescendos of the music.

Definitely one of this year's strongest releases. It's equal parts Decemberists, Fiery Furnaces, Arcade Fire, Pixies, and Frank Zappa. Five stars and two thumbs up.

Danielson is playing in Charlottesville on July 14, three days before my birthday. I'm so there.

Monday, May 08, 2006

SuSh 05.08.06 (JV in C-ville)

Sorry about the lack of posts over the last week. Been too broke and too busy to do anything fun.

I did get around to that John Vanderslice show last Monday at the Satellite Ballroom. Small venue, like Mojo's small, but less bar-like. It reminded me of a room the Shriners would rent out for wedding receptions or something. Definitely no Blue Note (damn I miss that place). Oh it had a bar, but no chairs at the bar. Plus it was $2 for a small cup of PBR.....lame.....although I did have a couple.

The show itself was fantastic! The opener was Page France. This is a band that everybody should hear. They were so freaking good. Just happy, clap-along, sing-along songs about God, family, and chicks. I didn't pick up any of their discs at the show, but will definitely be buying up thier whole catalog in short time.

As for the Vanderslice portion, he was great. It was the first show in a long time that I really didn't need any more out of it. He played everything I wanted to hear. He definitely lived up to the reputation of the nicest dude in indie rock. I think everybody in the crowd was very satisfied. A great mix of songs from Pixel Revolt all the way back to Time Travel is Lonely. Nothing from Mass Suicide Occult Figurines that I recall.

I did pick up his new release, Suddenly it All Went Dark: Pixel Revolt Live to 2-Track after the show.

This is mostly a good collection filler. Pixel Revolt has grown on me so much that it's hard to listen to these stripped down versions. Not that these are bad versions. It's just if I was to pull one or the other out to listen to, I will always pick the studio versions.

By the way, JV must really like Jason Molina. He's referenced the one song twice now ("Farewell Transmission"). That's great though because that's probably my favorite Molina song.

Tuesday I also picked up the new Streets album.

When I got back home a couple weeks ago and was driving around, KTRM was playing the whole album. I really dug it then, but forgot about it soon after. During the Vanderslice show, JV gave his big thumbs up too. So I bought it. Glad I did too because it's pretty damn good. The first half is okay. However once "Can't Con an Honest John" kicks in, it never looks back. Good stuff.

Anyways, onwards:

Current track count: 4779

1. Half-Handed Cloud - "They're Bad, but We're Worse" (Halos & Lassos)

2. Now it's Overhead - "Who's Jon" (s/t)

3. Mountain Goats - "International Small Arms Traffic Blues" (Tallahassee)

4. Radiohead - "Backdrifts" (Hail to the Thief)

5. Spoon - "Merchants of Soul" (Gimme Fiction)

6. Supergrass - "Caught by the Fuzz" (In it for the Money (bonus disc))

7. Jay Farrar - "Vitamins" (Sebastopol)

8. Whiskeytown - "Factory Girl" (Faithless Street)

9. Jenny Lewis & the Watson Twins - "The Charging Sky" (Rabbit Fur Coat)

10. Wilco - "Barnyard Pimp" (Wilco Book CD)

11. Cake - "Mr. Mastadon Farm" (Motorcade of Generosity)