There's a great interview with Okkervil River frontman Will Sheff in Found Magazine #4. Also, Found uh, founder Davy Rothbart and Sheff are working on a documentary project about children's amateur video filmmaking. Pick up the ish for more deets... (Thx to Summer Anne for the tip.)
Apparently, Joanna Newsom marketing machine -- which cruelly bypassed the entirety of the blog-o-sphere, leading to ruffled feathers and leaked tracks -- seems to be focused entirely on semi-quirky fashion (i.e. Nylon) and music magazines (i.e. Paste). If you pop by a newsstand now, you might notice Ms. Newsom on the cover of at least one, and mentioned in the coverlines of at least three others. Who said print is dead? Is this some kind of weird bellwether for music blogs? If Ys does well with absolutely ZERO promotion on the Internet -- no Joanna Newsom Myspace page, no mp3 downloads, no courting of bloggers -- does that actually mean anything? I would love, love, love to know if someone (Drag City? Ms. Newsom? Her publicists?) is trying to prove a point here.
People who are obsessed with Mark Danielewski's House of Leaves are um, still obsessed with House of Leaves (it was published in 2000). Even though Mr. Danielewski is touring for his new book Only Revolutions, he weathered the endless string of HOL-related questions from the weirdo fanboys (and yes, the crowd seemed to be nothing but weirdo fanboys) well. So did his co-panelists, Heidi Julavits and Cristina Henriquez. Marisha Pessl pulled an Ultragrrl, apparently and didn't show -- but she didn't even bother to invoke 'food poisoning.' Classy.
The Mountain Goats shows are a totally different experience now than they were even about year ago. (Has it really been over a year since I've seen them?) I'm not sure if it's that the crowds have changed, or the fact that Get Lonely (and to a certain extent, The Sunset Tree before it) isn't exactly filled with rousing shout-alongs. That being said, the now-traditional all-hands, rousing shout-along of "No Children" was perfectly cathartic without being overboard. Of course, it must be said my perception of the show was strangely skewed because I've had a lot of trouble actually spending a lot of time listening to Get Lonely -- it takes me to a place that I'm sort of avoiding after my weird breakup last year -- but I think more importantly, it's the breakup with my previous way of living (as opposed to my good-for-nothing boyfriend) that is more painful. It's not, of course, that I'm rueing wasted time or wasted relationships or wasted feeling -- more, in fact, the realization that this is what life is like -- it's never really going to be perfect or all settled or a piece of cake -- just ask Ryan Phillpe and Reese Witherspoon, after all -- right? Wait, wait -- before this turns into yet another boring treatise on my life changes and all that -- I need to tell you we had a really good time. And! If you saw two girls in nifty dresses working merch, well, then you saw us!
(ps -- We didn't make it to that Voxtrot show -- long story. If anyone went, let us know how it was. But the applejack-fueled pumpkin carving party was a riot!)
There's people wandering around my office in pretty spectacular costumes (the entire casts of Gray's Anatomy and Lost, for starters!) and for you, I have today's in HIGH DEMAND items:
Crystal Castles -- Love & Caring. You know them from that righteous remix of the Klaxons' suddenly omnipresent "Atlantis to Interzone." But did you know that the Crystal Castles totally power up (forgive the pun) their own delightful 8-bit glitchy dance numbers? WELL, THEY DO. The nice thing is, the Crystal Castles' output is often polished and shiny and lovely instead of earsplittingly noisy. This track is really neat, but I'm extra fond of subdued beauty of "Magic Spells," included here as a special bonus. (Myspace)
Rebecca Pidgeon -- Learn to Pray (Version Remix). I can't decide what's weirder -- that David Mamet has a TV show ("The Unit" -- which I've never seen, but is reportedly full of awesome scenery-chewing) or that his wife, the vaguely talented Rebecca Pidgeon has an album out, from which this track his been pulled for the good ol' house music remix treatment by Version (Charles Webster and Martin Iverson). Seriously, these two facts are both so weird, I can't tell you. Though, I'd have to say, advantage Pidgeon here, because Mamet's work is usually about dudes being dudes, and apparently so is "The Unit." But this whole dance diva thing is kind of tripping me out. (I especially like what appears to be the oddly sliced-up and warped clarinet or soprano sax on this track...) And, despite being touted as something utterly amazing by some sites I cruised by today, the other Charles Webster mixes also on this 12" are pretty um, boring and uninspired. (Site) (Remixers)
Archie Bronson Outfit -- Dead Funny (Four Tet Vocal Mix)/Archie Bronson Outfit -- Funnel of Love (delayed due to corrupt file). What's better, a Four Tet remix, or a Wanda Jackson cover? It's too hard to say -- which is why I've posted both. Congrats, Archie Bronson Outfit, despite your really bad name, your really bad album cover art, and your insane buzz, you've found a way into my heart. Finally! (Site)
The Mountain Goats -- The Day The Aliens Came (Demo). Because I absolutely couldn't post this without a Mountain Goats song, now could I? (I LOVE THIS SONG, maybe it'll show up on an album someday -- this is from the vinyl-only, limited edition Come Come To The Sunset Tree.) The boys are on tour for the next week and a half or so -- go check them out if they swing by yr neck of the woods. (Site)