Archive for December, 2009

Sightings: Grippers Nother Onesers (At Slimer Beach) Video

Tuesday, December 8th, 2009


I started feeling it coming on this past Saturday, at a holiday party in Bushwick. We were standing around blinking through a brown haze of Kennedy Fried Chicken grease and the evaporated alcohol of every single spirit ever distilled by man, laced with enough cardamom and cinnamon fumes to suggest that someone had gone ahead beforehand and rubbed down the entire apartment with a stick of Old Spice. We all agreed that the cloud, which got thicker and heavier as the night wore on, was supposed to be the cloud of brotherly love and holiday good cheer. But the room was too empty for that to really feel like the case, and if we stared through the mist hard enough we could see that what the host really wanted us to be looking at was a wall projection of zombies mangling each other in a Bavarian winter wonderland, the sight of magenta melting through snow, color-coordinated to match all the Gluwein …

Sightings: Campfires, “Stormy Late Fall”

Monday, December 7th, 2009

campfirescover500x5001“Stormy Late Fall,” the title track of Campfires‘ new seven inch, clocks in at a mere one minute and nineteen seconds. If we notice this before we give the record a spin, and consider that it was released in 2009, we are bound to expect one of two things: a) a “two-minute” scuzzy rock anthem that rages so hard that it passes out face-down in its best friend’s bathtub before hitting the final refrain, or b) something that never really wanted to add up to a pop song anyway, a collage of field recordings and half-baked melody lines that peters out like car radio slipping out of range. So which would you rather do if you were a one-man song from lo-fi Chicago, steeped in cassette culture and its affinity for shorter run-times and rapid-fire release schedules? Would you rather burn out or fade away? Jeff Walls, who cites the evocative impact of short format fiction as one of his inspirations, actually does neither. His music operates more like a tightly pulled shot of a espresso on a late autumn afternoon: all richness and warmth going down, with an aftertaste so strong you never notice that it’s over.

(Mismatched) Google Alert: Visitation Rites (#1)

Sunday, December 6th, 2009

giotto103“The visitation was just as weird and uncomfortable as I’d feared it would be. H, C, and Nancy all interacted with the visitors more than I did, mostly, I suspect, because sitting in a corner and glaring balefully at anyone I didn’t personally know (which was basically everyone but a couple of Cevyn’s friends) wasn’t the most inviting of postures for me to have on display. The pounding migraine I developed seconds after entering the funeral home did not have me feeling particularly sociable, which is a convenient excuse, but I can’t honestly say I’d have been much better if head and back were in tiptop condition.