Posted in Babies, Canadian Music, Drugs, Funny (ha ha), Marriage (Happy), Marriage Trouble, New Yorker, Pregnancy, Sarah Braunstein, Sex, Short Story, The Tragically Hip on May 9, 2013 |
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SOUNDTRACK: TRAGICALLY HIP-”Man Machine Poem” (2012).
I received the new Tragically Hip album Now for Plan A a while back. I’ve listened to it a few times, but it got lost in the shuffle. Then I put this song on and it really blew me away.
It’s a very typical Hip song–guitars that build but then retreat to let Gord Downie’s voice soar above the quiet verses. There’s something agonizingly beautiful about the way he sings the verses, which almost feel like they are a capella, the music is so minimal. Then for the second verse, the band kicks in and builds the song even more.
The chorus, which is very simple and is barely a chorus at all, punctuates the verses perfectly, with Downie’s voice being a great anchor. The song doesn’t rock as hard as some Hip songs, nor is it as ballady as others, but it’s a perfect example of what the Hip do so well–a middle tempo song that is both passionate and also rocks. (Although I could do without those weird little keyboard notes that dot the end).
[READ: May 8, 2013] “Marjorie Lemke”
At first I was unhappy about this story—it seemed like it would be another story of a young girl who gets pregnant and has a shitty life. Especially when I found out the father is a junkie who has run off and that she herself was a huffer of chemical fumes. Oh boy. And for some reason I thought the story was Irish (I guess there’s lots of down on your luck Irish girl stories out there–cheeky!)
But Braunstein transcends that story but giving Marjorie a support system. Her aunt, who is very helpful (but doesn’t remove her responsibilities), and a job as a maid at a nice (but not too nice) hotel. Her daughter, Della, is small for her age, but she seems mostly healthy. And the hotel allows Marjorie to bring Della along on her cleaning cart (tucked into the clean towels). Della pretty much sleeps all day (which is good for work, but not so good for nighttime), and no one has complained about her cooing or drinking a bottle when she does wake up.
Then Marjorie knocks on a door and a man is in there—he didn’t say anything when she knocked. At first Marjorie thinks he’s masturbating, but he’s not, he’s just absorbed in the newspaper on his lap. He tells her to just go about her work, don’t mind him. So she does. He’s not cold exactly just absorbed in what he’s doing.
The next time she goes to the room, he is there again, but this time his wife is there too. She is brusque and tells Marjorie that they will be in the room for about 4 weeks—she is an inspector and has several jobs in the area. She asks that Marjorie come every two days to clean and says there will be a large tip waiting for her.
The story then jumps forward a bit. In a way that is impressionistic more than telling, we learn that Marjorie and the man, Gabe, are getting close—talking, holding hands, comforting each other. (more…)
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Posted in Uncategorized, Funny (ha ha), Funny (strange), McSweeney's, Marriage Trouble, Short Story, The Believer, Universities, Art, Yuck!, Prison, Drinking, Kevin Moffett, Unlikable main character, Humiliation, Violence, Nazis, Death, Drugs, Bob Mould, J. Erin Sweeney, Culture Shock, Fears, Huh?, Jack Pendarvis, Jules de Balincourt, Sugar, Law, Roy Kesey, Surreal, Clare Rojas, Sarah Raymont, Susan Steinberg, Bem Jahn, Tony D'Souza, Anthony Schneider, Roderick White, Aaron Gwyn, Sam Miller, Corinna Valliantos, Franz Ackermann, Mamma Andersson, Kevin Christy, Anna Conway, Holly Coulis, Amy Cutler, Chris Duncan, Echo Eggebrecht, Niklas Eneblom, Jeff Gauntt, Angelina Gualdoni, Ernst Haeckel, Wendy Heldmann, Jason Holley, Håvard Homstvedt, Susan Logoreci, Ashley Macomber, Jacob Magraw-Mickelson, Jodie Mohr, Laura Owens, Henri Rousseau, Rachel Salomon, Andrew Schoultz, Keith Andrew Shore, Rachell Sumpter, Fred Tomaselli, Kuniyoshi Utagawa on May 8, 2013 |
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SOUNDTRACK: SUGAR-File Under: Easy Listening (1994).
I always thought File Under: Easy Listening was a very funny title. But it’s possible that people took it too literally as it didn’t sell all that well. And in Mould’s autobiography he says he didn’t have much time to write songs for this disc and he thinks it suffered. Of the three Sugar discs, this is definitely the weakest, although there are some great moments on it.
The disc opens with “Gift” which has some ragged distorted guitars. It’s got some noises and grungy sounding solos showing that FU:EL was a joke. Although, the overall sound is kind of a cleaner version of the angry songs on Beaster. “Company Book” is kind of a pounder, until the voice comes in and you realize…it’s not Mould! It’s got a catchy chorus, but after the kind of underwhelming opener, it’s a strange place for a song that’s also not so dynamic. Especially when it’s followed by “Your Favorite Thing” another great pop song from Mould—not top tier but a really strong second tier (although that bright, simple guitar solo is a real winner). “What You Want It To Be” is a another decent song (the addition of that extra guitar playing the melody line really makes the song shine. “Gee Angel” is also a high point. A catchy song, but which never quite reaches the heights of the previous albums.
“Panama City Hotel” has the same feel as the opening of Beaster: bright acoustic guitars and a similar riff. But it never really goes anywhere, and the 4 minutes seem. The “do do do do’s” that open “Can’t Help You Anymore” are certainly the brightest spot on the album, and a big pop song as well. “Granny Cool” has a nicely abrasive riff although it seems kind of mean spirited. It’s funny that he tucked “Believe What You’re Saying” at the end of the album. It’s a minor song but it sounds so bright on this album after the other songs. It’s really quite pretty.
And the closer, “Explode and Make Up” is one of Mould’s great angry songs. Unlike Beaster, this one has a happy acoustic field—bnright guitars with that raging distorted guitar underneath. It’s a great slow burner of a song and at five minutes it ends a somewhat lackluster album in a great way.
[READ: March 31, 2013] McSweeney’s #20
McSweeney’s #20 is an issue that I have read before. At least I think I have. My recollection is that it was the last one I read before I started writing about them on this blog. I was hesitant to read it soon again, which is why I waited until now. And while I remember the issue itself (with all of the art), I didn’t remember the stories. So who knows if I actually read it six years ago.
Anyhow, this issue comes jam-packed with art. Every fourth page has full-color artwork on it–many of them are quite famous. It makes for a very beautiful book.
In between these artworks are a number of stories–ranging in size from 2 pages to 30-some pages. There are no letters, and the explanatory and copyright information is on the cover of the book–which would be fine, except that it is covered up by a kind of 3-D artwork. I wonder if the whole text is available anywhere?
The book also comes with a separate pamphlet–an excerpt from Chris Adrian’s Children’s Hospital. I intend to read the novel eventually so I didn’t read the excerpt–although maybe if I put off the novel for six years I should just read the excerpt now. (more…)
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Posted in All Songs Considered, Altar of Plagues, Death, Drinking, Drugs, Gangsters, Huh?, McSweeney's, Racism, Ramen, Short Books, Susan Straight, The Pogues on April 17, 2013 |
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SOUNDTRACK: ALTAR OF PLAGUES-”Scald Scar of Water” (2013).
I never think of death metal coming from Ireland. I think of punk and metal and obviously the Pogues, but noise metal? Unlikely. And yet here is some. And why shouldn’t Ireland produce music like this? There are fans everywhere.
I heard this from good old Lars at NPR. I’ve come to expect the unexpected from Lars’ picks. And this is no exception. The song is six minutes long. It has some traditional death metal stuff–growling vocals, incessant drumming and lots of noise. But there’s a lot more going on here. It opens with electronic noise and thudding drums. The drums are punctuated by alternating abrasive guitar riffs. The song meanders along until it settles down to some heavy heavy verses (I have no idea what the man is screaming about). After returning to the buzzsaw riffs, and repeating the verse, the song suddenly stops.
At 4 minutes the whole thing stops. There’s some scratchy noises and then some slow pulsing bass and suddenly the whole song turns into kind of alternative metal song, complete with chanting. It’s pretty unexpected. I can’t imagine what the rest of the album is like.
[READ: April 17, 2013] Between Heaven and Here
This was another book that I did not like in the beginning. Well, that’s not exactly true, I enjoyed the beginning but I really didn’t like the middle and really wanted it to end soon. Not a good way to feel about a book. The reason I didn’t stop is because it was so short. It turns out that an excerpt from this book was in a McSweeney’s issue that I recently read (and which I haven’t posted yet). I didn’t “get” the excerpt then, and while it makes more sense in context I still felt the section was really hard to follow.
And so was much of the book.
This is the story of Rio Seco, an area of California, and the citizens who live there. As the story opens we learn that Glorette Picard is dead. Glorette was a crack whore, the kind of girl who would get killed and no one would miss her. Except that people would miss her. She had a lot of friends and relatives who cared about her. She even had a son, Victor, who is 17 and studying his ass off to be able to go to college. When a boy in town finds Glorette’s body dumped in a shopping cart, he feels compelled to move her, to bring her to her Uncle Enrique because he knows that the police won’t care if some crack whore was killed. So he moves the body and that sets in place the rest of the story.
What was confusing to me was that the novel was constructed like a series of short episodes–different people and how they knew Glorette and how Glorette affected them. That’s not a problem, except that there’s very little indication that that’s what was happening. It felt increasingly difficult to know who was the main character was in each section, especially since so many characters overlapped. Which again wouldn’t have been a problem except that I really couldn’t tell which person was the narrator or at least focus of each section. Sometimes they were never identified, other times only after several pages. The chapter that was excerpted in McSweeney’s has virtually no names in it, it is just dialogue. And sure the dialogue was interesting and with the novel’s context made some sense, but I’m still not sure who was in the conversation. (more…)
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Posted in Babies, Books about music, Cupcakes, Def Leppard, Drinking, Drugs, Geddy Lee, Hospital, Humiliation, Japandroids, Maria Semple, Sex, Virginity (Loss of) on February 19, 2013 |
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SOUNDTRACK: JAPANDROIDS-Post Nothing (2009).
Japndroids are two guys from Vancouver. And man, they make a racket fit for a group double its size. There’s a lo-fi quality to the recording but that’s mostly because the guitar is buzzy and noisy and distorted and the drums are miked very loud (and there’s cymbal splashes everywhere). The vocals (which are mostly screamed/sung) are also pretty relentless (especially when the backing vocals come in). And yet for their simple punk aesthetic their songs aren’t short. “Young Hearts Spark Fire” which opens with some slower guitar (before crashing into a huge verse) runs over 5 minutes. That’s five minutes of thumping drums and super fast guitars. Well, they do take small breathers in the song, but they don’t last long.
But for the most part, the songs are simple, fast rockers and while there is a sameness to the album, there is diversity within their sound. ”Rockers East Vancouver” has a bit more treble in the guitar and a slow middle section. It also has what sounds like a bass guitar break–but remember there’s no bass. The thudding guitar and drums that open “Heart Sweats” also sound very different, as do the groovy Ooooohs that punctuates the verses–making it a very distinctive song.
“Crazy/Forever” opens with a nearly 2 minute instrumental before turning into a slow rocker that last for 6 minutes of catchiness. The album closer, “I Quit Girls” has a cool feedbacky sound on the guitar that makes it sound rather different as well. And the song itself is a slow almost ballad (bit not really a ballad, don’t worry) that really stands out on the disc. So this debut is 8 songs in 36 minutes–a great length for a fun rocking album.
[READ: February 19, 2013] This One is Mine
If you named a book Unlikable People Who Do Foolish Things it probably wouldn’t sell. Or maybe it would. Regardless, it’s an apt subtitle for this novel. Semple is extremely daring to write a story in which nobody is likable at all. Luckily for her, though, is that she writes really well and the book itself is very likable, so much so that I stayed up way too late several nights in a row to finish it.
So this book is about a small group of people who run somewhat parallel lives. David Parry is married to Violet. His sister Sally is single. Although David is the sort of fulcrum between the two women, the story is about the women far more than David. But it’s important to start with David to set things up. David Parry is a multimillionaire. He works in the music industry–he’s the asshole that all the bands need on their side. So, he has autographs with everyone (working on getting his daughter a photo op with Paul McCartney, had Def Leppard play his wedding, etc). But he’s cold and distant to his wife.
Or at least he seems to be from Violet’s point of view. Violet is a writer. She wrote a very successful TV show but wanted out of that life. When she met David, they had an amazing first date (and David still swoons when she looks at him that way, but it seems like she hasn’t been looking at him that way very much lately). And when they settled in, she realized she didn’t have to work anymore. But then she felt odd realizing that she wasn’t making any money herself. So she threw her creativity into a new house. Which took forever. Then they finally managed to have a child (Dot), but Violet found being a mother overwhelming as well, so the nanny (called LadyGo) takes Dot much of the time (and yes, David is resentful of this too).
Violet is at loose ends with her life. And then she meets Teddy. Teddy is a loser–a former addict with Hepatitis C, he plays double bass in a Rolling Stones cover band. When she first sees him, he is playing in the park for some kind of function (not as the Stones cover band, but in some other kind of band) and she is entranced by the music they make. Teddy has a double bass and, when Violet runs into him after the show, because she parked near him, he is trying to fit it into his crappy car that breaks down all the time. Indeed, it won’t start now. He can;t afford to fix it which means he wont be able to get to gigs, which means he won’t have money for rent, etc. He’s about as far from Violet’s one can get. Yet, despite the fact that he is an asshole: verbally abusive, cocky and prone to make very bad choices, she falls for him. She offers to pay to have his car fixed. And then imagines when they can meet again. (more…)
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Posted in Adrian Tomine, Africa, Alex Robinson, Alison Bechdel, All Songs Considered, Anarchy, Ander Nilson, Archer Prewitt, Art Spiegelman, Ben Katchor, Books about music, Books about writers, Boredom, Bud Fischer, Bust, Canadian Content, Charles Burns, Charles Schulz, Chester Brown, Chip Kidd, Chris Ware, Chris Ware, Collecting, Comic Strips, Consumerism, Corporate skewering, Culture Shock, Daniel Clowes, David Collier, David Heatley, David Lasky, Death, Debbie Dreschler, Depression, Dreams, Drinking, Drugs, Essays, Esther Pearl Watson, Excerpt, Funny (ha ha), Funny (strange), Gary Panter, Gay/Lesbian, Ghosts, Gilbert Hernandez, Gilbert Shelton, Glen David Gold, Graphic Novel, History, HOB, Huh?, Ira Glass, Ivan Brunetti, Jaime Hernandez, Jeffrey Brown, Jesse Reklaw, Joe Matt. Seth, Joe Sacco, Joel Priddy, John McLenan, John Porcellino, John Updike, John Woodring, Jonathan Bennett, Julie Doucet, Justin Hall, Kaz, Kim Deitch, Kurt Wolfgang, Lili Carré, Lloyd Dangle, Louis Reil, Lynda Barry, Malachi B. Cohen, Mark Beyer, Mark Newgarden, Marriage Trouble, Masturbation, McSweeney's, Memoirs, Michael Chabon, Military, Milt Gross, Oddities, Olivia Schanzer, Parts & Labor, Philip Guston, R. Crumb, Rebecca Dart, Richard McGuire, Richard Sala, Rick Geary, Rodolphe Töpffer, Ron Rege, S. Kierkegaard, Seth Tobocman, Sex, Short Story, Sonic Youth, Supernatural, Surreal, Tim Samuelson, Tom Hart, Violence, Virginity (Loss of), War, William Faulkner, World Cafe Live on January 29, 2013 |
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SOUNDTRACK: PARTS & LABOR-Stay Afraid (2006).
Parts & Labor have changed t heir style over the years going from noisemakers who have a melody to being melodious noisemakers. This album is one of their earlier releases when noise dominated. Right from the opening you know the album is going to be a challenge. The first song has pounding drums (electronics that sound like bagpipes) and heavy distorted shouty vocals. By the end of the songs there is squealing feedback, punk speed drums and screaming distorted vocals (complete with space sound effects). It’s an aggressive opening for sure. Song two opens with a long low rumbling and then ”Drastic Measures” proves to be another fast-paced song.
“A Pleasant Stay” is 5 minutes long (most of the rest of the album’s songs are about 3 minutes). It continues in this fast framework, although it has a bit more open moments of just drums or just vocals. The way the band plays with feedback in the last minute or so of the song very cool.
“New Buildings” has a hardcore beat with a guitar part that sounds sped up. ”Death” is a thumping song (the drums are very loud on this disc), while “Timeline” is two minutes of squealing guitars. ”Stay Afraid” has a false start (although who knows why–how do these guys know if the feedback sounds are what they wanted anyhow?). The song ends with 30 seconds of sheer noise). The album ends with the 5 minute “Changing of the Guard” a song not unlike the rest of the album–noisy with loud drumming and more noise.
The album is certainly challenging, it’s abrasive and off putting, but there;s surprising pleasures and melodies amidst the chaos. Indeed, after a listen or two you start to really look forward to the hooks. If you like this sort of thing, this album s a joy. It’s also quite brief, so it never overstays its welcome.
[READ: April 15, 2011] McSweeney’s #13
I have been looking forward to reading this issue for quite some time. Indeed, as soon as I received it I wanted to put aside time for it. It only took eight years. For this is the fabled comics issue. Or as the cover puts it: Included with this paper: a free 264 page hardcover. Because the cover is a fold-out poster–a gorgeous broadside done by Chris Ware called “God.” And as with all Chris Ware stories, this is about life, the universe and everything. On the flip side of the (seriously, really beautiful with gold foil and everything) Ware comic are the contributors’ list and a large drawing that is credited to LHOOQ which is the name of Marcel Duchamp’s art piece in which he put a mustache on the Mona Lisa. It’s a kind of composite of the history of famous faces in art all done in a series of concentric squares. It’s quite cool.
So, yes, this issue is all about comics. There are a couple of essays, a couple of biographical sketches by Ware of artists that I assume many people don’t know and there’s a few unpublished pieces by famous mainstream artists. But the bulk of the book is comprised of underground (and some who are not so underground anymore) artists showing of their goods. It’s amazing how divergent the styles are for subject matter that is (for the most part) pretty similar: woe is me! Angst fills these pages. Whether it is the biographical angst of famous artists by Brunetti or the angst of not getting the girl (most of the others) or the angst of life (the remaining ones), there’s not a lot of joy here. Although there is a lot of humor. A couple of these comics made it into the Best American Comics 2006.
There’s no letters this issue, which makes sense as the whole thing is Chris Ware’s baby. But there are two special tiny books that fit nearly into the fold that the oversized cover makes. There’s also two introductions. One by Ira Glass (and yes I’d rather hear him say it but what can you do). And the other by Ware. Ware has advocated for underground comics forever and it’s cool that he has a forum for his ideas here. I’m not sure I’ve ever read prose from him before. (more…)
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Posted in David Foster Wallace, Essays, Books about writers, Smarty Pants, Jens Lekman, Marriage (Happy), Drinking, Unlikable main character, D.T. Max, Boredom, The New York Times, Death, Haruki Murakami, Ra Ra Riot, Rivka Galchen, Drugs, Sex, Tennis, Scholarship, Jennifer Egan, Dictionary, Biography, Decadence, Book Reviews on January 10, 2013 |
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SOUNDTRACK: RA RA RIOT-”Is It Too Much” (2013).
I loved the first Ra Ra Riot album The Rhumb Line. This song expands on some of the ideas from that album, but I fear that it goes in the one direction I would have preferred they not go. The album had strings, nice harmonies and a great singer all melded into an interesting rock structure.
This song retains all of the elements that were interesting, but it removes it from the rock structure, making it sound much more lightweight. It’s pushing too far into easy-listening. And do I hear autotune on the vocals? The instrumental middle section is the most interesting part of the song. But Ra Ra Riot seems to have removed the riot part of their sound. If this is the direction of the album, I’m afraid I won’t be following.
[READ: January 8, 2013] “Consider the Writer”
I just finished the D.T. Max biography of David Foster Wallace. I was curious what kind of reception it received. And lo, here’s a review by Rivka Galchen (something I would have read anyhow since I enjoy her so much).
Galchen opens with two main points–the biography is gripping (and it is, I’ll be saying more about that tomorrow, too). She writes: “In writing a chronologically narrated, thoroughly researched, objective-as-imaginable biography, Max has created a page turner.”
The second idea is that you keep thinking “that you just don’t find Wallace all that nice” (which I also thought). But then she wonders if it is fair to be worried about that. We should not judge others after all. Especially since, as she points out, “We don’t always find ourselves asking whether a writer is nice. I’ve never heard anyone wonder this at length about, say, Haruki Murakami or Jennifer Egan.” So why is that a concern about Wallace? Because niceness is what Wallace wrote about, tried to encourage. And perhaps “One understandably slips from reading something concerned with how to be a good person to expecting the writer to have been more naturally kind himself.” But that is not necessarily the case–people strive for things that they cannot achieve. I like her example “the co-founder of A.A., Bill W., is a guru of sobriety precisely because sobriety was so difficult for him.” And her conclusion: “Wallace’s fiction is, in its attentiveness and labor and genuine love and play, very nice. But what is achieved on the page, if it is achieved, may not hold stable in real life.”
And Galchen talks a bit abut DFW himself (the book is a biography after all). How he wore the bandana because he sweated so much–how self conscious he was about that and by extension nearly everything he did. This mitigates his not-niceness somewhat. It also ties in to his alcoholism drug use and depression. And his competitiveness, which is obvious in the biography. She enjoys the pleasure of Wallace’s correspondences, “especially with his close friend and combatant Jonathan Franzen, but also with just about every white male writer he might ever have viewed as a rival or mentor. Aggressive self-abasement, grandstanding, veiled abuse, genuine thoughtfulness, thin-skinned pandering — it’s all there.” I rather wished that the authors’ own reactions were included (of course it’s not biographies of them, and they are still alive), just to see if they sparred back with Wallace or if they were put off by yet indulgent of his needs. (more…)
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Posted in Essays, McSweeney's, Books about writers, The Sopranos, Short Story, Contests, Religion, Beastie Boys, Books about music, Smarty Pants, Zombies, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Racism, Hockey, Violence, Chuck Klosterman, Anachronisms, WXPN 88.5 FM--Philadelphia, PA, Drugs, Tennis, Boxing, Olympics, Prince, James Brown, Soccer, Van Halen, Biking, Mad Men, Jamie Allen, Baseball, Basketball, Grantland, Bill Simmons, Wright Thompson, Jay Caspian Kang, Wesley Morris, Brian Phillips, Charlie Pierce, Carles, David Shoemaker, Bill Barnwell, Harris Wittels, Katie Baker, Bryan Curtis, Molly Lambert, Ken Dryden, Andy Greenwald, Mark Titus, Chris Ryan, Shane Ryan, Tess Lynch, Hua hsu, Rafe Bartholomew, Jonathan Abrams, David Jacoby, Louisa Thomas, Alex Pappademas, Football, Edgar Rice Burroughs, Sexism, Table Tennis, Cycling, Rembert Browne, Charles P. Pierce, Chris Connelly, Amos Barshad, Tara Ariano, Peter Orner, Mark Lisanti, Dave McKenna, Daniel Kellison, David Hill, Jeff Chang, Jason Oberg, Creed, Nickelback, Public Image Ltd, Aziz Ansari, Jason Siegel, Sixto Rodriguez, Girls, Jay-Z on December 27, 2012 |
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SOUNDTRACK: PUBLIC IMAGE LTD-”Poptones” and “Careering” on American Bandstand (1980).
The Dick Clark article below alerted me to this bizarre gem–PiL “playing” on American Bandstand. The article talks about John Lydon ignoring the lip synch, climbing into the audience and generally disregarding the show’s script. The video suggests something sightly less sinister (although maybe for 1980 it was outrageous–do you really cross Dick Clark?).
Dick Clark himself announces the band nicely, and then the crazy off-kilter bass and simple guitar of “Poptones” kick in. Lydon runs into the bleachers with the kids (most of whom are dressed in New Wave finery not unlike Lydon). They shriek with glee when he comes nearby (do any of them know who he is? I have no idea). When Lydon’s spoken rambling come in a little later you can’t help but wonder what the hell they are doing on AB.
Then, Lydon starts grabbing people from the audience and pushing them towards the stage–something I believe was unheard of on AB. The fans dance around to the impossible-to-dance-to “Poptones.” The song ends and Dick asks John if he wants the kids out there for song two. Yes, song Two! He does and John faux lip synchs through “Careering,” avoiding cameras at all costs and dancing with the kids–one of the most egalitarian performances I can think of from Lydon.
And listen for Dick asking Jah Wobble his name (reply THE Jah Wobble) and him saying, nice to meet you Wobble. What a surreal moment–wonder what Dick thought of it.
Enjoy it here:
[READ: December 28, 2012] Grantland 4
Grantland continues to impress me with these books (and no, I have not yet visited the website). My subscription ran out with this issue and I have resubscribed–although I take major issue with the $20 shipping and handling fee. I even wrote to them to complain and they wrote back saying that the books are heavy. Which is true, but not $5/bk heavy. The good news is that they sent me a $10 off coupon so the shipping is only half as painful now.
This issue’s endpages were “hypothetical baseball wheel-guides created by JASON OBERG–they were pretty cool and a fun idea. They look very retro, but use contemporary batters, pitchers and catchers. I’d like to see them for real.
Each issue makes me like sports a little bit more, but not enough to actually watch them.
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