Monday, August 21, 2006

Back from Hiatus

Hey everybody, i'm back and ready to go after my nearly 2 week layoff. It's been a busy two weeks, but a lot of fun. This week shall too be busy (Mets game, 3 Frank Black shows {last one tonight}, Joanna Newsom/Neko Case show), but i'm going to hopefully have a bit more time to post. So, here we go:

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Yet another plug for Tim Young's Contrast Podcast. I'm on the current one (This One Goes Out To...) and will be on the subsequent two as well. If you haven't subscribed yet, you're high. It's amazing - the contributors are all great and the mix of music is unprecedented.

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Later this week, i will be posting my second Rantcast. It's a little later than i wanted it, but oh well. I'm going to do two a month, and i wanted to do it on the 1st and 3rd Thursday of the month, but that isn't going to happen this month. Also, i'll re-post the first one in a lower bitrate when i post the new one. Basically, between my blog, my Rantcast, my inclusion on the Contrast Podcast and my work over at Frank Black Dot Net (and their podcast), i'm the new king of all media. Eat shit, Stern.

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This week i have become painfully aware of how i am not a solo-acoustic type performer by taking in a trio of solo acoustic performances in Brooklyn. First, i saw my good friend Dan D'Ippolito perform as Attention Driver at Galapagos Art Space. Dan is very graceful on stage and manages to make his intricate playing looking nearly effortless. And even though he says he doesn't like it, he appears to the naked eye to be very comfortable on stage.

Then, on Saturday night i saw back to back acoustic sets by Frank Black, my favorite living songwriter, at Southpaw. FB doesn't have the guitar skills of Mr. D'Ippolito, but his raw style when taken in with his incredible vocal range and unique songs make for a stunning, attention grabbing set. 20+ songs, ranging from old Pixies barnburners to meditations on divorce and even a song about the Three Stooges - these shows showed me that i simply can't do that. I like to perform, but i don't think i'm cut out for the singer/songwriter acoustic milieu. At least not right now.

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I'm starting to get excited about a few new records coming out in the next few months. While the major labels are hoping that OutKast, Justin Timberlake and Christina Aguilera can save this shit year, i am looking forward to a different trio of records (although i would like to hear the first two records i mentioned). I'm looking forward to:

Mosquitos III - the third album from NYC by way of Brazil and Jersey City trio Mosquitos. Lead singer Juju is in my top 5 dream women list (somewhere between Lea Thompson in her Enchantment Under the Sea Dance dress from Back to the Future and the girl from PCU i re-fell in love with yesterday). Think “The Girl from Impanea” meets Calexico having an affair with Cake. Drops in early September (record release party Sept. 6 at Joe’s Pub).

Orphans: Brawlers, Bawlers and Bastards – A new, three-disc (!) set from Tom Waits, rounding up some old tunes and 30+ new ones. One disc (Brawlers) is blues-based, one disc (Bawlers) is full of ballads, waltzes and Celctic tunes, and the last disc (Bastards) is full-on experimentation. Very, very excited for this. It will be released Nov. 21.

Friendly Fire – I am a very big admirer of Into the Sun, the first album by Sean Lennon, and am looking very much forward to his new one, coming out September 26. It would be very easy to dismiss Lennon simply on his dad’s legacy (John Lennon, ex-Beatle, for the bizarrely ignorant), but his first album included bits of jazz, bossa nova and electronic music. He has also played with people like Cibo Matto, Brian Bell (from Weezer) and Ben Kweller. The album also features a disc of short films that correlate to the tracks. Should be interesting to say the least…

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With Pedro on the DL and now Glavine having arm issues, the top three of the Mets rotation looks like this: Trachsel, El Duque, John Maine. Although I have varied amounts of faith in those three, I am hoping that Pedro (at least) is back from the post-season, and my prayers are with Tommy G, as he is probably the most consistent of the Mets’ staff this year.

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