The other day, Friday, my Powerbook acted up, so I took it to the Apple store to have things checked out. As I walked through the mall I spied these two old guys sitting on a cushioned bench and my thought was, "Those guys are planning to overthrow the government." My Powerbook checked out okay, but I have a suspicion that the hard drive is going to die, so I backed up all my iTunes on my external drive.
New review of A Girl Called Eddy. It's hands down one of the best albums of the year and will make my top 10 at the end of the year with a chance of finishing in the number one slot. I absolutely love this album and it's highly recommended.
Yesterday in the mail I received a number of books, three of which are from the 33 1/3 series of books on seminal rock albums. I spent the afternoon reading Chris Ott's tribute to Unknown Pleasures by Joy Division.
It's a well informed quick read that discusses the history behind Joy Division and the recording of Unknown Pleasures. Not as good as Joe Pernices's wonderful fictional tale based on Meat Is Murder by the Smiths, but still a good read. I also got Andy Millers take on The Kinks Are The Village Green Preservation Society and Joe Harvard's The Velvet Underground and Nico. Looking forward to reading both of those. This is a very cool series of books for anybody interested in music and the canonization of specific rock albums.
Listening to: Old Enough To Know Better (V/A Compilation that celebrates one of indie rocks finest record labels, Merge. It's a three disc comp. spanning all the bands that have been on the Merge roster. Discs one and two contain Merge classics. The third disc of the set contains hard to find and previously unreleased tracks from M. Ward, Spoon, Crooked Rain, and a lot of other great bands. And you can't go wrong with three discs worth of material for $15.)
I scribbled up a review for the new Belle and Sebastian EP. I so badly wanted to enjoy the EP and approached it with fresh ears, but alas, that approach did not work. Belle and Sebastian have followed, albeit quicker, along the same path as REM, a band whom I dearly loved until they released Monster, and a band I barely listen to these days. Read the Belle and Sebastian review under Reviews. I welcome feedback to any review that I've written.
Listening to: Bad Weekend (Art Brut — Any band, especially a British, willing to name themselves after use the pop format to sing without an ounce of pretension or irony, "Popular culture no longer applies to me," deserves to be the next band on the moon.)
Tonight I'm off to see the Polyphonic Spree... And last night it was Scrabble, and I got destroyed, but learned a new word, Pica, which is an abnormal desire to eat substances not normally eaten, like chalk, or soap, or ashes.
New review for The Futureheads' self titled debut album under reviews. I'm also working on a review for Mylo, a Scottish dance music/laptop artist.
Tomorrow it's a 15 mile run.
Listening to: Destroy Rock & Roll (Mylo—Review coming soon)
There are days when I wake up, like this morning, and I don't want to run, but I do. However, today I didn't. For some strange reason over the past few weeks I've been waking up at around 3:30AM, and then I'm unable to fall back asleep until maybe 4:30AM. Since there appears to be very little stress in my life I can't blame my irregular waking patterns on stress. This morning I awoke at 3:30AM and didn't fall back asleep until what felt like 5AM, and then, as soon as I fell asleep my alarm went off to tell me to go run. Instead I stayed in bed and listened to my sleepy body. In hindsight that was a smart decision. After work I went over to the trail I do my long runs at and ran eight miles. The only way the run could have been better was if I ran seven minute miles instead of eight minute miles. I couldn't have picked a better year to train for the Chicago Marathon. Everybody at work kept complaining about the weather, but I kept insisting that it's beautiful and perfect. So I had this incredible run that reminded me why I'm a runner. On the iPod was The Secret Machines latest album which is fucking brilliant with it's Led Zepplin meets Neu! styled theatrics. Hands down one of the best albums of the year, and one that I'll be listening to as I do my long runs.
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - President Bush (news - web sites) told a roomful of top Pentagon (news - web sites) brass on Thursday that his administration would never stop looking for ways to harm the United States.
The latest installment of misspeak from a president long known for his malapropisms came during a signing ceremony for a new $417 billion defense appropriations bill that includes $25 billion in emergency funding for operations in Iraq (news - web sites) and Afghanistan (news - web sites).
"Our enemies are innovative and resourceful, and so are we. They never stop thinking about new ways to harm our country and our people, and neither do we," Bush said.
The Republican incumbent, who is in a tight race for reelection against Democrat John Kerry (news - web sites), a decorated Vietnam veteran, used the 11-minute presentation to underscore his commitment to U.S. troops.
On hand for the ceremony were Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld, deputy Defense Secretary Paul Wolfowitz and Gen. Richard Myers, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.
I say we elect President Bush for another term. Why? Because maybe America needs to laugh a little more, and Bush is the perfect comedian, although, an unintentional comedian, for our troubled and numbered days. I will say that I'm not down with our other option. I mean, come on, doesn't anybody else think of Batman and Robin when they see Kerry and Edwards? Just suit them up, give them a Bat Mobile, and they're reading to go.
Listening to: Songs From Northern Britain (Teenage Fanclub—Just a glorious piece of pop perfection. I've never understood why this band never really broke big. But I guess that shouldn't be much of a surprise)
After my run I read and finished From The Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler. I'm sure I read it when I was a kid, maybe in 3rd or 4th grade. Good stuff. Once I finished that I pulled Septuagenarian Stew off the shelf and started to read. Bukowski kills me. I can only hope that some day he is taught next to Whitman or Kerouac. Promise me that you'll be the one... Which reminds me, tonight I'll throw on some Dylan Thomas, maybe listen to Under Milkwood. I like the contrast from starting the day with Koningsburg and then finishing it with some classic Bukowski.
Listening to: Stop Making Sense (Talking Heads — Never been one for live albums, but this one is simple perfection, opening with Psycho Killer is pure genius. Also happens to be, in at least my opinion, the greatest concert film.)
Digging through my archives I uncovered a Quicktime video of Zerostars from our most recent show. View Killer of Summer (8.2MB).
Pics from last week's half marathon:
And no, I didn't turn into an Asian man... Thankfully I only have a ten mile run this weekend. Yet I know I'll want to get out and run tomorrow, but I get a rest day. Earlier in the day I was looking at my training schedule and I started to wonder exactly what I'm getting myself into with this whole marathon thing. It'd be nice if I had someone to train with, but I've been pretty focused since my training began. In a way it's slightly taking over my life. Not sure if that's good or bad. I mean, it's good to have goals, but I start to wonder at what cost, especially when the goals could potentially destroy other aspects of my life. No specifics.
Funny, thinking back to this time last year, and I say to myself, "Has a year already passed? It's still not fair that I can no longer have a conversation with my grandfather..."
Song: Days (David Bowie)
I've decided that unlike the French, Americans like their music processed. When I say processed Americans, for the most part, are more interested in the pop star versus the actual art being created. Hence our Ashlee Simpsons and Hillary Duffs...
Listening to: Party Shuffle on my PowerBook (Last 20 songs played)
Listening to: The Stars of St. Andrea (Devics - Perfect for my Tuesday morning recovery run. Sleeper of an album from last year that I didn't discover until a few weeks back. This is a band to watch for in 2004. Quite a stunning and tranquil album.)
Album: The Concretes (The Concretes - What's in the Swedish water?)