Archive for the Category »Music «
I can’t review this in any other style than a letter to the artist.
I realise you’ve, like, found your style. And that’s great, it really is.
However, you should probably consider changing at least a little bit.
Because, you know, this new album sounds precicely like previous one. And the one before that.
This song I’m listening to now, for instance, sounds just like the one you did with Iggy Pop, only with a different vocal line. And while I do really like what you do, I think three albums of precicely the same thing gets a wee bit old.
You might want to consider growing as a musician or something. I hear it’s good for musicians to evolve at least a little bit.
Today’s morning commute wasn’t like it usually is. I was a little late out of the house, and as I walked quickly down the street, I reached my hand down the side pocket of my bag, only to realise that It wasn’t there. It being my mp3 player, which I feel completely dependant on in the mornings. I could have turned back to get it, but I was already late, so I kept walking.
It was an odd sensation, stalking down the street without a beat to move in time with. Music shapes my life, and as such every day experiences like the stretch from my house to my place of work are set to music, and I’m taken away from the daily grind and the thoughts of another day on the job, and float into the world that only exists in my head, the space that’s created in the connection between the music and myself. I sit on the tube looking into another world, dreaming impossible dreams, performing with my favourite singer, looking into the eyes of a lover, walking the streets in another city in another country, anywhere but here. Today, I was unable to escape where I was.
It really hit me how much time I spend with music. For most of my adult life, I have spent few hours a day without listening to something, even at work. Having moved on from retail to office work, I fill the pressing empty space around me by humming songs at my desk, as if I’m pretending to be listening to music, even when I’m not. Walking home from work tonight, I filled my head with the memory of music, lines and chords, melodic shifts and far away beats, drawing from a large library in my head, anything to escape the silence.
Could I shut it off completely if I tried? Could I listen to the silence, stay grounded in the present and not look into other worlds, stop hiding in music? I don’t know. Silence is prone to bring forward thoughts one don’t want to think, memories one want to forget, tasks one have forgotten to complete. As every day life presses on from every angle, I slip into music and pretend I’m somewhere else. And all along, I am me in the moment, the music shaping how I experience the world around me, bleeding onto the street, layering them with sounds. I have a song for every street I’ve lived in. My life comes with a soundtrack, and the track listing grows longer as I grow older.
Let me introduce to you (if you have not already heard and been convinced) to Gogol Bordello, one of the most exciting bands I have heard in a while.
Think Gypsy. Think Ukrainian music. Think NYC Gypsy Combat Punk. And conclude that my, this sounds exciting.
Think it sounds completely out there? It rather is. Is it still good? No. It’s bloody brilliant. Guaranteed to raise your mood to “I have to dance around the room in a dorky manner,” and make your cheeks hurt from all the grinning.
Immigrant Punk. Think locally, fuck globally.
Listen to Gogol Bordello.
Thesis stress is becoming ridiculous, but lucky for me I now have a whole week off, as I’m going to Los Angeles in the morning! Oh yes, I will spend a week in the sun, probably marinated from day one (but hopefully not getting the mother of all hangovers on day two, like last year), and plan to not see any sights at all. I do however plan to see Sin City and The Hitch Hikers Guide to the Galaxy, none of which qualify as sights. But hey – maybe I’m lucky and I’ll manage to see the Hollywood sign through the smog this time around. I could barely make it out last time.
But I’m not going just for drinking and movies (although that sounds like something I wouldn’t mind doing in the future!), the main reason for the trip is meeting up with Amanda and go to Coachella. Two days of music, and a lineup that makes me giddy every time I think about it, despite Cocteau Twins pulling out. I like how the lineup is of band in such different genres. Bauhaus and Katie Melua at the same festival? That’s pretty cool. Even if I don’t care for Melua much.
I like travelling to different countries to hang out with people, it always gives you such a different experience than if you were to go with someone from your own area. So what if you don’t see any of the must-see places? I went to Hollywood Boulevard and the Walk of Fame last year and it took me less than a minute to conclude that it wasn’t worth the 30 min walk from my hostel. I mean, ooh. A street with pink stars with names on them. How very exciting.
I shouldn’t be so harsh on the place really, I did end up getting my first tattoo there that day. So it was worth the walk after all, I have a kitty on my arm that I’m very pleased with. And that drugged girl who came up to me when I was waiting for the bus and gave me the story of her life plus a couple of tips on how to not be safe in LA, she was memorable. She was one of those people who come to LA to try and become a star, it was pretty sad. She thought I was the same, and looked confused when I told her that I did in fact not care at all about becoming a movie star.
Nah, I couldn’t go to Hollywood to pursue a life of fame.
I could however go there for alcohol, decadence, music, dancing and having a blast. Worked like a charm last year, here’s hoping this trip will be even better.
And that I don’t get the mother of all hangovers followed with a cold, because damn, that can seriously mess up a trip for you.
I was about 17 when I declared my undying love for Jeff Buckley. The artist himself however, turned out to be quite incapable of staying alive, and drowned shortly after. In all these years he has sat quite comfortably at the top of my list of male singers, bands and solo artist alike. There was no one I loved like Jeff, and my own style of singing is highly influenced by him. There are other singers whose styles I admire a lot, but to me the only one who could ever come close to Jeff was Leonard Cohen, who I’ve grown up listening to.
I have confession to make. My darling Jeff, I’m cheating on you. And I’m sorry to say it’s not a passing crush, it’s a love that’s grown from the infatuation I felt from ‘Poses’, to the deep love drawn out by ‘Want one’ and ‘Want two’. Yes that’s right, I’m cheating on you with Rufus Wainwright.
‘Poses’ was a lovely surprise of an album, which I found by accident at work one day. It could’ve ended there, it was a good album and I played it a lot. But the ‘Want’ albums grabbed my heart and held on to it, and now the voice is refusing to let me go. I haven’t been playing the favourite game with music for a while, because I tend to go through phases with albums, but these two? They’ve stuck to me, and the more I listen to them, the more I fall deeply in love. His voice hits a nerve with me that very few artist do, and it is with shock that I realize that I rate Wainwright over my most beloved singer, that Jeff Buckley has been pushed down from his firm place at the top.
Pretty things, so what if I like pretty things
Pretty lies, so what if I like pretty lies
From where you are, to where I am now
I need these pretty things, around the planets of our phase
Everything’s a sign of my astrology
From where you are, to where I am now
Is its own galaxy
Be a star and fall down somewhere next to me
And make it past your color TV
This time will pass and with it will me
And all these pretty things
Don’t say you don’t notice them
Rufus Wainwright’s music is my new happy place. When I listen to his voice I remember what it feels like to be in love. I suspect appreciating Wainwright will be the new litmus test for future potential relationship. To quote Astrid in Backbeat: “I could never love a man who didn’t love Edith Piaf”.
I say that jokingly, but still. Some music, when it hits you this close to your heart, it feels like it echoes part of your soul. And in rejecting the sweetness and fragility of Wainwright, one might not see the beauty in those parts of me either.
I just want to know
If something’s coming for to get me
Tell me, will you make me sad or happy
And will you settle for love
Will you settle for love