Today in music history: Light up or leave me alone

October 25th, 2006 → 11:52 am @ // No Comments

Three quick things.

* I know all the cool kids are reading Pitchfork, the website that’s going to singlehandedly put Rolling Stone out of business and solve the Middle East crisis. I’ve been all into Stylus Magazine as of late; a friend pointed me to their site because of a recent multi-part series on the Boredoms, the super-awesome Japanese noise/meditative band that “managed to fully realize the drive for transcendence in heavy metal is the same as the one in new age.” (If you’ve never heard the Boredoms — or Yoshimi’s (of “Yoshimi and the Robots” fame) OOIOO you should check them both out. Now.) Any site that can write, with equal facility, about ELO and the Boredoms is, at the very least, worth investigating.

* Another entry in a never-ending series celebrating the genius of Kelefa Sanneh. Check out this section from his review of a recent Paul Simon concert:

“In the years before and after ‘Graceland,’ Mr. Simon has explored everything from salsa to batucada. If this rhythm obsession seems like an odd preoccupation for a mellow folkie, Saturday’s concert showed why it isn’t. Mr. Simon’s obsession with rhythm is related to his obsession with language. By packing his verses full of words, he emphasizes the complicated rhythms of spoken English. He needs a rhythm section that can keep up with his mouth.

You could hear this clearly during a sparse and propulsive version of the title track from “Graceland.” One stanza begins:

There is a girl in New York City who calls herself the human trampoline
And sometimes when I’m falling, flying or tumbling in turmoil I say, ‘Oh, so this is what she means.’

That’s a mouthful. But if you add a nimble bass line, Mr. Simon sounds less like a chatterbox and more like a great percussionist.”

* Speaking of cool kids, I know I’ll get crap for this one…but the new Phish release reminded me of why I loved the band when I was 17 years old. The three-disc set, culled from a series of 1988 shows in Colorado, is officially being released on Halloween. If you hate Phish, you’re not going to give this a chance anyway. If you’ve ever been intrigued by the band but have a hard time figuring out why hundreds of thousands of blissed-out hippie freaks would travel up to Maine to watch them play for three days straight, these discs, recorded when the band was still playing at bars, should help explain things.

Post Categories: Boredoms & Kelefa Sanneh & Music

One Comment → “Today in music history: Light up or leave me alone”

  1. yukon

    17 years ago

    the new Phish release reminded me of why I loved the band when I was 17 years old.

    It’s ok to admit it. You’re still into it. Stay away from Trey’s new cd if you fear the change though.


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