Archive for October 2008

Music Managers, aaaargh

30 October 2008

With a big mp3-collection, it’s necessary that you have a good music library that gives an easy overview of all your songs. I use Ejay Virtual Music Manager 2007 (which is actually Helium 2007).

And today it crashed … AGAIN. It crashes all the time, there are no updates to be found, it’s full of bugs… but if it works it’s a great program..

I would like to use winamp, but that keeps crashing too (no idea why, i even uninstalled and re-installed).

Itunes? Neih, i don’t like it.

Windows Media Player is the worst however, completely impossible to navigate through when you’re having quite a number of songs. So i’ll just reload Ejay again.

waiting for the next crash …

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Bookworm Wednesday: Jorge Luis Borges

29 October 2008

Who? Jorge Luis Borges

What? Short stories that challenge your mind

Must read? I’m reading it right now, but the stories “Pierre Menard, Author of The Quichote” and “Tlön, Uqbar, Orbis Tertius” are astonishingly good.

Actually I can’t tell that much about Borges. I know that he turned sort of blind during his life, and that he wrote very symbolic stories, with lots of metaphores and surrealism. I’ve only recently got to know him (i bought an anthology), and read the stories ‘Pierre Menard, Author of the Quichote” and the other one only this week.  But they really were so amazing, that i can’t stop writing about it now, hoping that you all run to the online bookstore and order one of his books.

Pierre Menard is the story of a French writer who rewrites the Don Quichote by Cervantes. It’s an essay about the way Menard wrote a better Don Quichote than the original, but – without revealing the plot – that seems a weird thing to say. (just read it). It’s a story about translation and interpretation of texts. Really, really good.

But well, i’ve studied languages, so maybe you’re more into history, and especially history of the big conspiracies? Read the Tlön-story then, a story in which a guy discovers a country that doesn’t exist. Also just read it.

The thing is that Borges – at least in those two stories – in a very dry style can create a surreal world. While reading it, it feels as a paradox. All the time you’re thinking: “oh this is just an essay about something”, and then in the end you find out it’s all just fiction.

There was this other story, that was more symbolic about a guy who wanted to have the ability to dream a person with all the details, which he manages to do. very metaphorical story, very nice ending as well.

I can’t wait to read more, and so should you.

Travelin’ round in a cruel indieworld: Paleo

28 October 2008

Who? Paleo aka David Andrew Strackany

What? 365 songs in a year’s time, with a great mind of honesty

Sounds Like? A mixture of Clap Your Hands Say Yeah, Bob Dylan & other indie-fucking-greatness like Ezra Furman & the Harpoons, Frog Eyes (acoustic version), The Robot Ate Me, Peter and the wolf, ..

Paleo was a man with a plan. On the 16th April 2006 he started with his 365 days project. While touring in the US, he forced himself to record a song EACH day, with at the end of each week a song called Sunday Prayer (which according to his website, he still is recording eveyr week).

The best part? All these songs are available to download for free. You can also order them on a mp3-cd (like I did, really nice card you get with it by the way, and a sampler of some songs). I must admit that i haven’t listened to nearly a 10th of all the songs, just because it’s so much. But every time i hear some songs, i really get all psyched by the high quality.

Before this project, Paleo also released an amazing album called Misery, Missouri which is out of print. If i’d be a record lable, i’d rerelease it immediately, but unfortunately i’m not. I eventually found it on Soulseek or Torrents, and it’s really worth downloading. More produced, with amazingly good songs. The song Ninety Two is of this album. The other links are from his 365 Days project. Can’t Wait to hear another of his studio albums. By the way, he is now member of These United States, an amazing indie folk band. Check Them out! (or wait for my 2008-list? 😉 )

Paleo – 19 Ninety Two

Paleo – Boring Together

Paleo – The Best Years Of My Life

Paleo – Hide And Seek A Bottle Of American Red

You can listen to all his songs (and download them) on his website.

The Guys from Misophone put my little post on their myspace.

27 October 2008

A few weeks (months?) ago, I wrote something exciting about Misophone, and when looking for information about the new album getting released, I found out they had put my post on their myspace.

Best part?

(p.s we’re working on getting those other albums released)

Labels, you should really really get these guys. I mean it. anyway, new album coming out in November. Just go to their label and wait till the order-button appears. Starting from Now.

Albums that won’t make my End of year list of 2008 and will appear in many others

26 October 2008

So, still not completey listened all records of 2008 (and new ones are added every day, damn frustrating hobby of mine), but i’m getting there. And i’m pretty sure that there are lots of records that just won’t make the list, although all the indie kids are screaming that these records are the best in evolutionary history. But no, the following records that could’ve made into my list if I hadn’t listened to them (meaning there were some expectations), didn’t get into my holy realm:

1. Tv On the Radio – Dear Science

Ok, i admit it. I like this album. It’s funky, it’s danceable, and there is a certain excitement to it. But it’s just not good enough to compete with the other albums that will make my list.

2. Conor Oberst – Conor Oberst

I used to be a very big fan. a Very big fan. I had all the records (well, not all legal), i looked for new songs, i even won his albums, concert tickets and a bottle of his favourite wine because i had written a piece about him. That peace ended with “i hope the hurricane won’t ever stop”. Unfortunately, he did. He started slowing down after I’m Wide Awake (which was a good record), and right now, i feel like i don’t ever wanna listen to him again. His solo-album was so boring and middle of the road, as if Oberst has lost his urge to make music. He’s trying too hard now, instead of just doing. That is most of the time deadly.

3. My Morning Jacket – Evil Urges

‘Highly Suspicious’, what the hell was that about? A joke? It was shocking. It made me stop listening immediately. It took me a few weeks to gather the courage to listen to the rest. Skipping the hated track, i found out that My Morning jacket has gone the same way as Conor OBerst. While the official press (all guys older than 36, mind you) gives much praise to the new direction (because they are old and in love with middle of the road music) the band has chosen, i think it’s just not heartbreakign enough anymore. I don’t get goosebumps. This band is after Z adn this record of the list too.

4. Cat Power – Jukebox

Damn, three in a row, and three times the same story.  Chan Marshall used to be a drunk, she used to be loud mouthed, emotional, making intense songs. And then she got sober, got jazzy and while the big mob was discovering her nice voice (which she still has), the guys who knew her early records took their money and run. Well, i did.

5. Bon Iver – For Emma, and Ever Again

Dear insideoutsock, Bon Iver, is that too commercial as well?  Well no, dear children. Bon Iver was in my list last year (hear me brag), and in that way is excluded from this year’s list. But, after having known it for almost a year, I can say that it would probably just make the real list, or maybe it just wouldn’t. The album isn’t as heartbreaking after a few spins, and i’m really wondering whether this guy will be able to amaze us with a second album. I think he won’t. But we’ll see.

And to conclude, songs that prove Cat Power, Bright Eyes and My Morning Jacket used to be way better.

My Morning JAcket – Bermuda Highway (At Dawn)

My Morning Jacket – I will be There When You Die (The Tennessee Fire)

Bright Eyes – Something Vague (Fevers & Mirrors)

Cat Power – Nude as the News (What Would The Community Think?)

Cat Power – Werewolf (You Are Free)

What Happened to the poetry?: Havergal

24 October 2008

Who? Havergal

What? slacker folk with dots of elektronica

Sounds like? slowed down Postal Service sung by some pavement-fan, The prenatal Birth of Why?

There once was a time, that there was a guy, that was called Havergal by many people in many nations. Havergal was a musician, who made music for the sad lonely indie kid who enjoyed his folk with a bit of modern electronics. He sang as if he didn’t really care. Both songs down here are from his masterpiece ‘Lungs For The RAce’.

I really wonder what happened with him. I want him back.

Havergal – Lungs For The RAce

Havergal – Hey

You can find his albums at Secretly Canadian.

If anyone can tell me what the guy is doing right now (musically i mean), just let me know!

Bookworm Wednesday: Jose Saramago – Blindness

22 October 2008

What? Blindness by Jose Saramago

About? A city where everyone turns blind all of a sudden and the horrible consequences

A collegue told me today that the movie adaptation of the brilliant novel Blindness by Jose Saramago really sucked. I love movie adaptations. Most people think the book is better, because they always compare the two, even though the mediums are completely different.

Anyway, i don’t want to get too intellectual. Or maybe i do, cause Jose Saramago isn’t an easy read. The lack of punctuation, except for the use of commas, asks for an effort on behalf of the reader. I’ve only managed to finish Blindness, although i started in some of his other books. And i will do so again, cause the thing i love most about Saramogo is the way his books all evolve around a “What if?”- idea. Blindness talks about what could happen if everyone all of a sudden turned blind, whereas ‘The Double’ e.g. has a concept: what if you discovered someone who is exactly like you?

‘Blindness’ is a book you don’t read if you want something light-hearted. Not only the style is heavy, the plot itself is horrifying. I’m not gonna bore you with analyzing this novel (in particular, because i’m not fond of analyzing and dissecting novels, and because i have read the books almost 4 years ago), but its underlying message is quite the read. You don’t have to read Blindness if you want realism. It’s actually a parable that describes humankind from a misantropic point of view.

You can buy it at your book store. I think you should read it in your own language if your English isn’t good enough. That will be hard enough.