Thursday, September 4, 2008

TVD Shuffle Bored | September 5, 2008

My mp3 collection totals around 12,000 songs. I acknowledge the ridiculousness of having that many songs and no time to listen to them but it's nice to put them on shuffle and hear songs I haven't heard since I was 18. And some songs come around in the shuffle that I love, and, occasionally, some songs that I hate (but juuuust can't delete). Normally in a shuffle I'll listen to one or two songs and then another will come along and I'll skip over it. Today, however, all 5 were songs that I would listen to in a row.

It's a shame how the rise in popularity of the ipod has caused music for many to become impersonal, leaving the fun of things like mix tapes (and, if you're of my generation, CDs) in the technological dust. I remember being a sophomore in high school and this senior, Travis who was quirky and smart in that nerd-in-a-movie way in which none of the girls really noticed him, but regretted it years later after he became a successful writer/artist/musician/earthworm wrangler, recorded a mix tape (that I was to supply) for me. Side note: The cassette, "borrowed" from my younger brother, was originally the story of Paul Bunyan as read by Jonathan Winters. I had to choose between that or one of my dad's Hall and Oates cassettes. I think I went with Paul Bunyan because it seemed there would be less chance of getting made fun of for a book on tape than toting around a tape of some mustachioed male 80s duo in my backpack. Upon returning it, Travis had written things like "Babe the Blue Ox hearts Pavement," which I thought was oh so rad.

I cherished that tape and played it a million times partially because I thought Travis was totally cute and knowledgeable about all things cool, but also because it was the first time anyone had given me a mix tape (unless you count the Vanilla Ice and NKOTB tapes my friends and I bootlegged for each other when I was 8) and I loved all of the music it exposed me to. I then spent the rest of my time in high school, on into college, perfecting my very own mix tape formula. Now, it seems, possibly due to busyness and/or laziness, I settle for the occasional iMix or just setting my tunes on shuffle. Modern technology may have the ability to put thousands and thousands of songs in one place, but it never gives me that rush of joy like when I popped that first mix tape into the player.

Langhorne Slim - Loretta Lee Jones (Mp3)
Mark Kozelek - Metropol 47 (Mp3)
Tsunami Bomb - My Machete (Mp3)
Jesca Hoop - Seed Of Wonder (Mp3)
The Boomtown Rats - Shes So Modern (Mp3)

TVD Ticket Giveaway | Liam Finn | Saturday (9/6) at The Rock And Roll Hotel

A number of years ago I was in the audience at a Finn Brothers gig over at the 9:30. A superb, albeit proper show was frequently interrupted by a much younger Liam and his brother, high up on the dressing room balcony overlooking the stage, sailing paper airplanes down over the band in mid-performance. So, if it's to be that fine, nuanced, and melodic songwriting and performance is a Finn Family hallmark, much like the paper airplanes sent sailing down from the rafters, Liam tosses in his own air of unpredictability in a live setting--fidgeting with often abused notion of 'one guy and a guitar'.

From Liam's press bio: During his raucous yet intimate performances Liam utilizes effects pedals to create, sample and loop bass, guitar, drums and vocals to layer with his live vocals and guitar. Pre-programmed flourishes, also keyed live by Finn, gurgle under his sharp, addictive melodies to produce experimental pop music that is simultaneously ghostly and direct in its atmospherics and emotionalism. Being responsible for all the sound flowing from the stage is inevitably risky, but it's a risk in which the youngster relishes. "I think the fact of doing this looping, one-man-band sort of thing really keeps you on your toes and keeps it fresh. The more you mess up, the more you're forced to turn it into a good mess and people seem to respond more. I find it really stimulating. I just love the danger of it, really." As one might assume, a Liam Finn show is by no means the seated, shh-inducing coffee house affair many solo singer-songwriter performances can be. It's actually the antithesis. Finn drops fuzzed out guitar riffs, bellows bass lines and thunders on his drum kit like a punk rock caveman. When asked the philosophy behind this approach Liam remarks, "Whenever I walk in and see just a guy and a guitar, I think 'Here we go again.' I want to give people something different."

So, I'm thinking it's a pretty safe bet that the show the night before in Philly will bear just a tiny resemblance to the show the following night right here in DC--for which Liam and TVD are offering a pair of tickets and a copy of Liam's debut CD (they're out of the vinyl, I asked...) "I'll Be Lightning" to one lucky winner.

The aforementioned winner will be the lucky commenter who can touch on something truly wondrous and utterly unpredictable that has occurred to him or her at a live show--and we won't look the other way if it happens to be sordid and/or scandalous. (That's a good night out, right?) And if you can work in some Liam love too along the way, we won't call it predictable at all.

Unfog those memories and let us have 'em. We'll choose a winner next Friday--9/5!

Liam Finn - Second Chance (Mp3)

Official Website
Official MySpace

TVD Shuffle Bored | September 4, 2008

I'd like to thank all of the commenters who responded to my inquiry regarding the downloads from TVD. For now, given the feedback, I imagine things will stay pretty much as is. The one exception might be posting three instead of five Mp3s for newer releases that are readily available. I'm also heartened to know that TVD is indeed a promotional resource and is being used as such, more or less...

And lastly...the Liam Finn contest ends in 24 hours and we've still got tickets and a CD to give away...say hello to us and snap 'em up! Now, on to some more iPod randomness...

Menomena - Wet And Rusting (Mp3)
Graham Parker - I Want You Back (Alive) (Mp3)
The Style Council - The Lodgers [Or She Was Only A Shopkeepers Daughter] (Mp3)
Carol Bui - This Is How I Recover (Mp3)
OMD - Mystereality (Mp3)