July 24, 2014
so for the next two weeks ish, i’ll be housesitting for my aunt and uncle while they’re on vacation, and i am really excited! a house to myself for two weeks! honestly it’s probably more psychological than practical—i mean, i can have my own house to myself for 10+ hours most days, and it’s not like mom gets in the way of anything i’d be doing anyway—still, this seems like a huge luxury to me. (the un-familiarity is a big part of it too, i think; makes everything feel crisper. i’m always lazy at home, and i believe it’s something to do with the homeness of it…like, my attention span etc improves exponentially if i go in to the library, and it’s not that it’s really quieter or anything.) the lovely back deck pictured above (hopefully to be graced with a steady continuation of the lovely weather also pictured above) is probably the best feature (we have a biiit of a front deck but it’s like 6 feet from the road and looks pretty much directly into the people across the street’s front yard/house). i think my main plan for these 2 weeks is to get lots of reading done.
(i have to mow the lawn at some point, but i get to use a ride-on mower for it, which is like way hella fun—seems like all the parts i might enjoy about driving if it weren’t for several extra tons of metal+the whole minesweeper field of potential victims aspect.)

so for the next two weeks ish, i’ll be housesitting for my aunt and uncle while they’re on vacation, and i am really excited! a house to myself for two weeks! honestly it’s probably more psychological than practical—i mean, i can have my own house to myself for 10+ hours most days, and it’s not like mom gets in the way of anything i’d be doing anyway—still, this seems like a huge luxury to me. (the un-familiarity is a big part of it too, i think; makes everything feel crisper. i’m always lazy at home, and i believe it’s something to do with the homeness of it…like, my attention span etc improves exponentially if i go in to the library, and it’s not that it’s really quieter or anything.) the lovely back deck pictured above (hopefully to be graced with a steady continuation of the lovely weather also pictured above) is probably the best feature (we have a biiit of a front deck but it’s like 6 feet from the road and looks pretty much directly into the people across the street’s front yard/house). i think my main plan for these 2 weeks is to get lots of reading done.

(i have to mow the lawn at some point, but i get to use a ride-on mower for it, which is like way hella fun—seems like all the parts i might enjoy about driving if it weren’t for several extra tons of metal+the whole minesweeper field of potential victims aspect.)

July 17, 2014

dusk is my favorite time of day

July 17, 2014
ok so actually i warmed to the halen quite a bit. (updated favorites: s/t, diver down…kinda obvious picks, i s’pose.) here are some things i have been liking:
the “blind to himself, he’s laughing up his scheme / looking back in anger, the city is relieved” part in "hang ‘em high"—but they only do it twice in the whole song! i hate that. (tangentially: one of my favorite things about the first japandroids record was how everything got repeated a million times, as if to make sure everyone would get a generous helping of their favorite part.)
i always thought, since eddie van halen was one of those list-topping guitar god virtuoso types, and the band was fucking called VAN HALEN, that they would be like a stupid wank-gimmick show, but actually probably the best thing about them is how tight they keep it. i mean, they’re not shy about their chops, but it’s always still about the song.
"loss of control" is a goof but still, so much fun; how it races right to the verge of its title.
the “can’t you see me…” part in "jump". (the rest is just ok.)
oh, another thing from today: i had this new soda, a limited edition crush flavor—a tie-in with hedley, who are a pretty big pop-rock band here in canada (i don’t really care for them but that’s neither here nor there atm). it’s called “wild life”, after their latest album. it’s a cherry flavor, and actually a really good one! a lot of artificial cherry flavors lean too hard on sweet—more like maraschino juices than actual cherries—but his one makes sure to hit that little curl at the end of the taste (and it settles right down into it beautifully for like, a second, just as the taste is giving way to the aftertaste). (speaking of which: a nice, very mild aftertaste; none of that sickly hangover sweet that plagues most fruit sodas.) makes for a great-tasting fizz, too. anyway, it was one of those things where the taste seemed like, absolutely at equilibrium with the color, which i’m always really really into, so i started thinking about that phenomenon in general, and i remembered this one time me and a couple friends (got really stoned and) made a bunch of blue kool-aid and watched one of the ocean episodes of planet earth. it was amazing. so i got the idea of getting, like, a bunch of blue (and probably green—seems like a better fit than lime soda) kool-aid and “wild life”, rigging it all up with straws (both to cut out the necessity for head-tilt drinks and also to allow combinatory drinking), and putting on suspiria, synching drinks w/the dominant color of the scene. i am very excited about this idea. i am totally fucking serious about this, me and fuckmaniknowbuthey are going to do it asap. we will report on the results, of course.

ok so actually i warmed to the halen quite a bit. (updated favorites: s/t, diver down…kinda obvious picks, i s’pose.) here are some things i have been liking:

  1. the “blind to himself, he’s laughing up his scheme / looking back in anger, the city is relieved” part in "hang ‘em high"—but they only do it twice in the whole song! i hate that. (tangentially: one of my favorite things about the first japandroids record was how everything got repeated a million times, as if to make sure everyone would get a generous helping of their favorite part.)
  2. i always thought, since eddie van halen was one of those list-topping guitar god virtuoso types, and the band was fucking called VAN HALEN, that they would be like a stupid wank-gimmick show, but actually probably the best thing about them is how tight they keep it. i mean, they’re not shy about their chops, but it’s always still about the song.
  3. "loss of control" is a goof but still, so much fun; how it races right to the verge of its title.
  4. the “can’t you see me…” part in "jump". (the rest is just ok.)

oh, another thing from today: i had this new soda, a limited edition crush flavor—a tie-in with hedley, who are a pretty big pop-rock band here in canada (i don’t really care for them but that’s neither here nor there atm). it’s called “wild life”, after their latest album. it’s a cherry flavor, and actually a really good one! a lot of artificial cherry flavors lean too hard on sweet—more like maraschino juices than actual cherries—but his one makes sure to hit that little curl at the end of the taste (and it settles right down into it beautifully for like, a second, just as the taste is giving way to the aftertaste). (speaking of which: a nice, very mild aftertaste; none of that sickly hangover sweet that plagues most fruit sodas.) makes for a great-tasting fizz, too. anyway, it was one of those things where the taste seemed like, absolutely at equilibrium with the color, which i’m always really really into, so i started thinking about that phenomenon in general, and i remembered this one time me and a couple friends (got really stoned and) made a bunch of blue kool-aid and watched one of the ocean episodes of planet earth. it was amazing. so i got the idea of getting, like, a bunch of blue (and probably green—seems like a better fit than lime soda) kool-aid and “wild life”, rigging it all up with straws (both to cut out the necessity for head-tilt drinks and also to allow combinatory drinking), and putting on suspiria, synching drinks w/the dominant color of the scene. i am very excited about this idea. i am totally fucking serious about this, me and fuckmaniknowbuthey are going to do it asap. we will report on the results, of course.

July 15, 2014
i listened to all the david lee roth era van halen albums today. they were okay. i think women and children first and fair warning are my favorites. i really like "little guitars", which was the only one i knew going in aside from radio overhearings and such (like i knew “running with the devil” but i don’t think i knew it was a van halen song). (i could’ve found a pair of pictures for above that better demonstrate the resemblance, but i liked the approximate symmetry of poses there.)

i listened to all the david lee roth era van halen albums today. they were okay. i think women and children first and fair warning are my favorites. i really like "little guitars", which was the only one i knew going in aside from radio overhearings and such (like i knew “running with the devil” but i don’t think i knew it was a van halen song). (i could’ve found a pair of pictures for above that better demonstrate the resemblance, but i liked the approximate symmetry of poses there.)

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July 15, 2014

richard & linda thompson - “hokey pokey”

love that electrified briar vine guitar.

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July 14, 2014
Shit I can't possibly be alone in thinking about: "best albums" vs. "favorite albums"

thekeri:

I have a list of my ten favorite albums. It has changed a bit over time, with seven remaining fairly constant and the other three spots a revolving door of albums that may or may not claim permanent positions on the list after a few more listens. However, by no means would I ever claim that my list is of the ten “best” albums ever made, nor would I foist it upon someone else as such.

When I read “best of” lists, I usually feel like this is exactly what the people behind the lists are trying to do; it’s probably why I have so much trouble taking them seriously. (An aside: I use semicolons wayyy more than everyone I know. I think I’m using them correctly, but I might just be coming off as a miseducated tool. Help me out here, y’all.) I think many music critics have a tendency to conflate “best” with “favorite” - the former seems like it could possibly be objectively determined, while the latter is the result of one’s personal, visceral reaction to the music they’re hearing. That said, feel free to tell me I’m full of shit, as I know that the best music is frequently emotionally driven and not necessarily technically correct or masterful.

My boyfriend is a guitarist, according to the literal “one who plays guitar” description, rather than the “this is my career!” sense. This is entirely unsurprising, as he is a white boy from the suburbs. Growing up, he was totally into solo guitar albums by the technically-talented Yngwie Malmsteen. Ever heard one of his albums? They’re boring as fuck. “It’s not great music, but holy shit, it’s good guitar,” Jesse said, when I mentioned that I’ve never been able to really enjoy albums by Yngwie, Joe Satriani, Steve Vai, or their contemporaries. I don’t deny that they can play the fuck out of their instruments, but their music is mechanical, serving only as a vehicle for their ego trips. Jesse is also an engineer in a highly technical profession, and he finds 80s hardcore, which I fucking love, absolutely unlistenable. It is totally unsurprising that he still carries a torch for prog rock and all things Favored Nations.

Did I mention I can’t play a single instrument? I’m gonna stop undermining my own point, and leave it to y’all to do so instead. Anyway, do feel free to throw in your own thoughts, even if they are just as incomplete and disorganized as mine. Eh? Ehhh.

this is a thing i’ve been thinking about a bunch lately! i’m getting to hate “best of” lists. i will always find an individual’s list of favorites way more interesting, even if i totally disagree with their picks. i like hearing why specific people like the things they do. the thing that really bothers me about “best of” lists is that murkiness—not quite that they’re conflating favorite and best…more like most favorite—as in, a favorite of the most people—and best, which i think is maybe even more screwy. at least if it’s a single author’s favorites that they’re calling the Best you can kind of deduce their criteria and biases and adjust yr read accordingly, but i mean, a million people could like the same album and they definitely won’t all like it for the same reasons, so an aggregate obscures more than it illuminates. and you end up with this feedback loop, like the same stuff getting on every list because it’s already on all the other lists; important because it’s critically acclaimed then critically acclaimed because it’s important, and so on. it’s boring! it dulls the discourse in a way that i think that can really fuck up especially kids forming their own tastes about stuff. like, when i was getting Seriously into music (jr high, high school), i read a lot of best albums ever lists and stuff, and i actually took “best” at face value. i just assumed that since the people writing them were professional critics, they must know what they’re talking about and if i didn’t get some of it it must’ve been because i wasn’t smart or mature or sophisticated enough to get it yet. (tbh i still struggle with this kind of thinking a lot.)

(i have a lot of thoughts/feelings about this but i’m having a super hard time articulating them, i’m sorry, i feel like i’m probly abusing the “incomplete and disorganized” permission here)

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July 13, 2014

July 12, 2014
i tried the “buffalo wings and blue cheese” double dutch chips last night. they were pretty good. the buffalo flavor is nice, tastes kinda like frank’s (for some reason i associated buffalo more with those faux-smoky, bbq-ish flavors). the blue cheese notes are few and far between but impressively vivid. it’s not so much like wings with a blue cheese dip as wings that someone sprinkled some crumbled blue cheese over, so every now and then you get a wing with a few little chunks sticking to it—only occasional, but a bit stronger when you hit it. and sometimes on the tail they’ll settle on a salty taste, which after a little while i realized was like the meat of the wings! as silly as the kinda “gourmet chip” thing they seem to be kinda going for with double dutch is, that sort of nuance almost earns it. that said: the buffalo flavor does eventually saturate your palate, though it’s a nicely restrained heat, not enough to burn it out altogether. (i think maybe this is just in the nature of spicy chip flavors. i can’t remember any spicy chips that have been good for more than a medium-size bag.) tbh the best thing the double dutch chips have going for them is the texture. they’re a good hard crunch, and then the flavor settles through the chew, rather than just going potato like a lot of ripple chips tend towards (even ruffles kinda, though i still like them). (although, again, eventually that chew-settling ends up where like, literally all meat flavors do: ~all-dressed. not that that’s all so bad a place to end up, i just hope someday flavor engineers can make it over that hump.)
also had some president’s choice world of flavours “canadian burger” (supposedly white cheddar, back bacon and ketchup?? is that particularly canadian? idk). they’re good too. we had dairy queen double cheeseburgers (which, btw, prob’ly the best fast food chain burger in canada this side of harvey’s atm) earlier and it was freaking us out how much these chips tasted like those actual burgers. that kinda sweet ketchup+charred-on cheese taste, basically the base of the flavor, is super super vivid. (i could’ve sworn i got a few pretty distinct pickle-ketchup notes too, but maybe it was just so realistic otherwise that my brain got tricked into filling in the rest of the burger tastes.) i think i would still slightly prefer double dutch's cheeseburger but i'll have to try them side by side to be sure.

i tried the “buffalo wings and blue cheese” double dutch chips last night. they were pretty good. the buffalo flavor is nice, tastes kinda like frank’s (for some reason i associated buffalo more with those faux-smoky, bbq-ish flavors). the blue cheese notes are few and far between but impressively vivid. it’s not so much like wings with a blue cheese dip as wings that someone sprinkled some crumbled blue cheese over, so every now and then you get a wing with a few little chunks sticking to it—only occasional, but a bit stronger when you hit it. and sometimes on the tail they’ll settle on a salty taste, which after a little while i realized was like the meat of the wings! as silly as the kinda “gourmet chip” thing they seem to be kinda going for with double dutch is, that sort of nuance almost earns it. that said: the buffalo flavor does eventually saturate your palate, though it’s a nicely restrained heat, not enough to burn it out altogether. (i think maybe this is just in the nature of spicy chip flavors. i can’t remember any spicy chips that have been good for more than a medium-size bag.) tbh the best thing the double dutch chips have going for them is the texture. they’re a good hard crunch, and then the flavor settles through the chew, rather than just going potato like a lot of ripple chips tend towards (even ruffles kinda, though i still like them). (although, again, eventually that chew-settling ends up where like, literally all meat flavors do: ~all-dressed. not that that’s all so bad a place to end up, i just hope someday flavor engineers can make it over that hump.)

also had some president’s choice world of flavours “canadian burger” (supposedly white cheddar, back bacon and ketchup?? is that particularly canadian? idk). they’re good too. we had dairy queen double cheeseburgers (which, btw, prob’ly the best fast food chain burger in canada this side of harvey’s atm) earlier and it was freaking us out how much these chips tasted like those actual burgers. that kinda sweet ketchup+charred-on cheese taste, basically the base of the flavor, is super super vivid. (i could’ve sworn i got a few pretty distinct pickle-ketchup notes too, but maybe it was just so realistic otherwise that my brain got tricked into filling in the rest of the burger tastes.) i think i would still slightly prefer double dutch's cheeseburger but i'll have to try them side by side to be sure.

July 10, 2014
back cover of vas-y, charlie brown

back cover of vas-y, charlie brown

July 10, 2014

a few years ago, in our first year of university, fuckmaniknowbuthey and i stumbled upon a promo lp of illustrated musical encylopedia, for $3 in a used cd shop clearance sale. we both knew sakamoto as a respected name but weren’t really familiar with his work—i knew “bibi no aozora” from the babel ost, that was all. we put it on as soon as we got back to the dorm and spun it end to end, iirc pretty much in silence other than occasional wowed blurts about the drum programming. we were obsessed with that record for months; listened to it, talked about it, shuffled orders of favorites endlessly. the ime version of “tibetan dance” is probably one of my most-listened songs ever. (that version is not on yt and i don’t have an mp3 on hand, but as perusing the million versions of any given song is one of the great joys of sakamoto’s catalogue, i feel like that fits.)

in light of recent news, wishing him well.

July 9, 2014

this record is like a perfect alloy of harsh and dreamy

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July 8, 2014

final exam, 1981

an unusual slasher. it really gets the quiet, languid vibe of those last few days on campus, when the residences are getting empty, save a handful of people waiting around for one or two more exams, and it whiles away ~the first two thirds just hanging out with the characters there, before it really gets into the slasher part. and even then, it never seems to quite get out of that vibe: characters are picked off, but it feels as though they’re just trickling out. the scary part is the empty space that’s left. (the film is very fond of shots kind of like the top one: single figure, big open space.) the climax is a chase through the campus, now almost completely vacant, late at night. (i can’t explain it, but it felt like even the pacing was somehow unnervingly roomy…it didn’t have that heart-pumping high tenor that climactic chases in slashers usually do.)

at one point, earlier on, a character exclaims, “people are killed, every day, for no reason at all!” and so it goes: the killer is just some guy…indistinct in appearance and mannerism…we never learn his identity or motive. again, the void is the scary part.

i really liked this one.

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July 7, 2014
seriously like a good 1/3 of fuckmaniknowbuthey and i’s conversation for the past week ish has been just barely articulate outbursts of sadness and rage about not being able to have these because fucking canada

seriously like a good 1/3 of fuckmaniknowbuthey and i’s conversation for the past week ish has been just barely articulate outbursts of sadness and rage about not being able to have these because fucking canada

July 7, 2014
RE: tg

Genesis explains: “That was inspired by Rhodesian guerilla activity at the very beginning of the troubles when some black guerillas came to a white farm house and castrated the husband in front of his pregnant wife and then made him eat his own testicles and she had to sit and watch him bleeding to death.

"I spliced that image in with the Sharon Tate killing when they actually stabbed her and one of the girls, Sadie, talked about wanting to cut the baby out because it was still alive inside Sharon Tate.

"It’s two different moments in time and two different motivations or cultures - one primitive, one very, very sophisticated - but also all through history conquering armies have raped, pillaged, castrated and tortured.

"It seems to be an inevitable result of that kind of physical power over somebody. Men seem to always be tempted into rape and castration. It’s a kind of eternal behavioural trait of man which I find objectionable but I don’t believe in being an ostrich.

"I believe it’s much more useful to turn around and look at it closely, even if you can’t figure it out, and say, ‘This puzzles me. Why do people do this?"

i am really wary of this line, this “it’s just in man” kind of thing. (it seems like you hear it more and more the further you get down into the apocalypse culture;etc swamps.) aside from the obvious “hey, it’s there, can’t help it” side, which to be fair i don’t think gen is doing, it seems, at the most generous evaluation, a huge oversimplification. i’m also really wary of “we’re interested in/studying/exploring/etc it”, largely because of this kind of shit—they almost never seem interested in actually thinking too hard about it. like, if you were really trying to get some window into what drives people do these things, if you were actually looking at it closely, surely you would consider social/historical/etc factors instead of saying vague shit like “all through history” and “eternal behavioural trait”?? especially since relationships of power are on the table, maybe the factor of colonialism in the difference between those two incidents would be of some significance?? (also, admittedly only cursory googling, but i couldn’t find any mention of such an incident in rhodesia besides references to this, and it has—particularly in combination with “one primitive” (speaking of which, not so sure about “one very, very sophisticated” either)—an icky kind of “ooh, savages” feel about it.) then again, these people were apparently good buddies with boyd rice, so joke is probably on me for giving it this much thought

i find some of their stuff sonically really interesting/cool—the live stuff, in particular; have been super into a couple of the ‘77 shows from tg24—but i don’t think i “get” tg

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June 30, 2014
they built this powerplant literally right across from a beach

they built this powerplant literally right across from a beach