Saturday, October 26, 2002

Nervy, Pervy VIII
Local literati Steve Almond contributes a piece (heh, heh, he said "piece") to Nerve detailing his visit to Adam & Eve, the nation's largest adult-oriented mail-order company. Part of Adam & Eve's business is a condom-distribution and family-planning nonprofit.

Thanks to Utne Web Watch.
Among the Literati XV
James Stegall's "Retail Commando" rocks my world. I don't know if this is going to be included as jacket copy -- if a chapbook is published -- but here's what I have to say:

"James Stegall captures all of the required ingredients of holiday reading: driniking, driving, dejection, democracy, destruction, disassociation, damnation, demands, and death. Merry frigggin' Christmas." -- Heath Row. Media Diet

If you think you might need jacket blurb writers, don't hesitate to ask. I aim to read.
Music to My Ears XV
Roger Miller recommends the Girls, "Live at the Rathskeller: May 17, 1979":

"Blisteringly high-energy, anarchistic, brutal, hysterically funny, etc., etc., etc. Direct descendants of Pere Ubu and Devo, but unlike either. I saw shows stopped by the club because of fights breaking out between the band and the audience. At one show, a group of 'mentally retarded' people (from where the keyboard player worked) came to see the band. For an encore, one of these fellows went up and improvised singing while the band improvised behind him. It was one of the most soulful moments I'd ever seen, before or since.

"I haven't heard this CD, but if you don't like chaotic punk rock with a heavy dada/art edge, do not order."

I say order.
Music to My Ears XIV
From my friend Hiromi:

Ryan Montbleau's music stirs something in me that I never knew existed. It makes my heart ache, and I want to cry out in sheer utter joy and total and complete madness all in the same breath.

That's high praise.
Music to My Ears XIII
Courtesy of my friend Rob, via Slashdot, Dialtones (A Telesymphony):

"Dialtones begins with a brief preparation phase prior to its performance, during which the members of the audience register their wireless telephone numbers at a cluster of secure Web kiosks. In exchange for this information, the participants receive seating assignment tickets for the concert venue, and new 'ringtones' are then automatically downloaded to their handsets. During the concert itself, the audience's mobile phones are brought to life by a small group of musicians, who perform the phones en masse by dialing them up with a specially designed, visual-musical software instrument. Because the audience's positions and sounds are known to the Dialtones computer system, the performers can create spatially distributed melodies and chords, as well as novel textural phenomena like waves of polyphony, which cascade across the crowd; these musical structures, moreover, are visualized by a large projection system connected to the performers interfaces. Towards the end of its half-hour composition, Dialtones builds to a remarkable crescendo in which nearly 200 mobile phones peal simultaneously. It is hoped that the experience of Dialtones can permanently alter the way in which its participants think about the cellular space we inhabit."

Sounds like a Flaming Lips show I went to once! The MP3's are fun, and I can't wait until I get home to download more.
Comics and Community II
This is really, really dated, but Robert Young, editor of the Comics Interpreter, one of the best comics-related zines currently publishing, went to SPX this year, and I didn't. So there you go. His SPX diaries are online for your perusal.

In Robert's own words: "Admittedly it's from a TCI-centric POV because I was there this year as an exhibitor rather than a journalist. Thus it's a schmoozy sort of I-met-this-person I-met-that-person type of account; but one with a lot of links and, I think, quite a few interesting anecdotes for anyone who's into indy comics."
From the In Box: Music to My Ears IV
I met and did a shitty interview with Mistle Thrush about a year ago, pulled out "Drunk With You" again tonight, and am loving "Jody Stone." Valerie, I know, is a huge fan of Tom Waits (especially "Closing Time") and Nick Cave. I write for a few Boston rags and work for Bullpen Promotions, which promotes extreme metal (not really my bag) to radio; the dude who runs Bullpen is the lead singer for Shadows Fall, and he's a big fan of early Mistle Thrush. Just goes to show how truly unclassifiable that band is. Anyhoo, was cruising around the Net, listening to an old disc and had nothing better to do, and just wanted to give a shout and say good review. -- Mike Baldino