After the two minute bonus track of “Over” comes the lengthy (very lengthy for The Mommyheads) “Box”.
I’m not sure what the song is about, but it’s got some great licks within it. It opens with a twisted guitar opening, one that never sems to settle. In fact, the entire first verse seems like the song doesn’t quite know where it’s going (which is deliberate, of course).
Because by the end of the second verse we get a very lengthy instrumental break that is ferocious in its coolness. It begins softly and then morphs into a psychedelic workout: harmonized guitar notes, funky drumming, and yet all within a mellow styling. It’s very clever.
Its a strange song and it may be my favorite Mommyheads song of all. It’s an excellent bonus track. Check the songs out (and buy them) here.
[READ: September 9, 2008] “New Orleans, LA”
This is probably the most straightforward “reporting” piece that I’ve read by Tower. As such, it doesn’t have a lot of flair to it.
It’s an interesting look at the rebuilding of New Orleans, into what appears to be a greener, stronger and better city than ever before. It almost seems like you need a terrible catastrophe and the goodwill of citizens to make a place even better than it was before.
He mentions a few individuals who were (and maybe still are) doing extra work to rebuild the city, and they are quite inspirational.
It’s available here.
Because it was so brief, I’m pairing it with another brief but much more entertaining article: “Extract a Tick from Your Junk” from the “How to Do Everything (Well Almost)” piece from the July 2007 issue.
It’s a manly exercise in tick removal. And it’s pretty funny. I’m not sure that pouring alcohol on the tick is strictly necessary though. I’ll try it on my dog the next time she gets one.
“The 7 Questions with Wells Tower” are pretty basic, but reveal a bit about his nonfiction work (and for DFW fans, he justifiable lauds “A Supposedly Fun Thing I’ll Never Do Again” and “Getting Away from Already Being Pretty Much Away from It All.”)
He also addresses my question about the whiskey and the tick (he says it’s just the decent thing to do for the tick before you kill it).
And this quote, which is advice to writers is why I like him as a writer, because I think his stuff is really tight and well-written:
Don’t be afraid to destroy your work. Don’t get too attached to the early drafts. Don’t treasure a sentence or description just because it took you 45 minutes to write it. Go back, be cruel, and revise it.
See all of the questions here.