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Archive for May, 2007

My friend Roman has just been immortalized in a blog–and not even this one, although now this makes two; granted my immortalization pales in comparison to THIS ONE. Congratulations Roman, for being The 50th Inductee Into Utter Wonder’s Hall of Fame! You can be in my hall of fame as well! And, while you would be the first, which is an accomplishment in itself, we’ll have to wait and see if any other folks clamor to follow you in.

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Obviously, I’m stealing my book and album cover art from Amazon.com. I could scan them myself, but let’s face it, no one has that much time. So, I’m sorry for the Search Inside logo, which I suppose I could crop, but I’m simply not going to. Not if I’m going to have time to write anything, anyway. Just the fact that it bothers me should display enough anal-retentivity for anyone. But the point I was getting at is just how weird it is for me to be posting covers that are not the cover of the book that I read. In fact, I would say that over half of the covers no longer reflect the jacket in my house or from my library. How weird is that. It makes me feel like I didn’t even read it. Frankly, the cover of the Duchess of Nothing (below) is appalling, and nowhere near as interesting as the cover of the book I read. Weird.

In the same breath, however, album covers never change. And despite the ineluctable (thanks James Joyce) connection between the music and the unchanging album cover, it is the music that you can now download with no art at all. Although now, you can go to http://www.dailylit.com/ and have a chapter (or at least a chunk of pages) of any number of classic works (including Mr. Joyce) sent to your Inbox daily. Fascinating. It would be like getting THE BEST WRITTEN EMAIL EVER! (more…)

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duchess.jpgSOUNDTRACK: DEFTONES-B-Sides & Rarities (2005).

deftone.jpgThe Deftones are fascinating. They play some really really heavy metal, and yet they have a softer side, like Sears. One of the all-time great metal songs is the Deftones’ “My Own Summer (Shove It)”, it has a dynamic loud-soft interplay and an excruciating chorus. Sheer madness. And then, you get their B-Sides collection and find out that they do an awesome cover of the Cocteau Twins’ “Wax and Wane.”

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[DIGRESSION]: Previously, in Sarah’s Book Journal there was a post about a book that she didn’t finish because she didn’t think it was good enough to finish. This is an admirable trait; in fact, if you do some basic searches online for “not finishing books” you will receive a lengthy hit list. However, I don’t seem to be able to give up on a book, no matter how dry or boring I think it is. This whole mindset stems from an incident in college where I claimed that David Lynch’s “Eraserhead” was terrible. So bad, in fact that I couldn’t finish it. My (influential) teacher said, how can you pass judgment if you haven’t finished the whole thing; it’s an unfair assessment. (more…)

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polly.jpg[READ: June 2007] Polly and the Pirates.

This is a pretty cute graphic novel. Stylistically it is somewhat unique, in that Naifeh’s style is idosyncratic and odd (see his Courtney Crumrin books and note that Courtney Crumrin has no nose!). This tale is of a young girl in a boarding school who is captured by pirates who believe that she is the daughter of their former pirate queen! Intrigue, treasure, dashing heroines, and all in a for-all-ages format. Good fun!

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lobster.jpgSOUNDTRACK: TOM WAITS-Orphans (Bastards) (2006).

orphans1.jpgThis is the piece de resistance of the Orphans set. All of the really, really weird songs by Waits get thrown together on this disc. Weird and wonderful, including a crazy cover of “Heigh Ho” from Snow White.

[READ: Summer 2006] Consider the Lobster.

When I was living in Boston, and going to graduate school, (more…)

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green.jpgSOUNDTRACK: TOM WAITS-Orphans (Bawlers) (2006).

orphans1.jpgThe thought of Tom Waits singing lullabies is a pretty scary one. The strange thing is that his lyrics and melodies are really quite beautiful, I’m just not sure I want that voice in my kid’s head at night.

[READ: May 2007] The Unthinkable Thoughts of Jacob Green.

After the heaviness and length (I’m sure Gaitonde would appreciate THAT beginning) of Sacred Games, it was nice to kick back with a comparatively light, and yet thoroughly enjoyable book like this one. (more…)

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