It's one more random than 10!
This is the second Friday the 13th we've had in a row? Isn't that bad luck? Or is it good luck, like multiplying two negative numbers? Maybe 2012, the year everyone says is the big apocalyptic year, has 12 Friday the 13ths, and the last one will unlock the mystical 13th Mayan month that brings about The End. Actually, that sounds like a good idea for a highly successful, semi-literate novel that generates a lot of controversy and gets made into a somewhat successful, slightly more literate movie staring Tom Hanks and a bad haircut.
Okay, onto some big freakin' news: While we were on vacation, The Lovely Becky sold her next novel! It's a love story about a female writer who is married a fantastic husband who is as good in bed as he is funny, and every chapter reveals just how awesome he is, especially in bed.
Wait, that's my novel.
Her novel is a dramatization of the life of this lil' ol' lady, written from her point of view. I would describe it as a portrait in human cruelty, and it's the kind of book that I think could do well enough to fulfill my lifelong dream of being a kept man. It's being published by a little publisher that some of you may have heard of.
In all seriousness, I am ecstatic for TLB. I have always reveled in my wife's success, and her happiness makes me happier than my own ever could. Her lifelong dream has been to be a writer, and now she gets to continue that dream.
Plus, I'm totally going to ride her coattails to my own book deal.
1) "Cath...," Death Cab for Cutie. The thing I like about Death Cab is that there's always something bubbling under their shiny, jangly musical surface. There's a whole mass of dark, depressing lyrics beneath the driving drums and chugging guitars. The live video here has a hilarious introduction.
2) "Rest My Chemistry," Interpol. Our Love to Admire is the most disappointing album I've heard in a while. I loved their first two discs and still play them very regularly, so I had my inner hype machine going full-bore, which made this dull, uninspired group of songs thud that much harder.
3) "Daddy's Gonna Pay for Your Crashed Car," U2. An annoying song from an otherwise underrated album. I really like Zooropa. The toughest thing to do in music is follow up an album like Achtung Baby: a work that both redefines a band's sound and becomes a massive hit. Do you play it safe and make Guten Tag Toddler? Put out a live/studio hybrid album called Der Rattel und Humm? Or get a little weird and maybe even let The Edge do vocals? They took a chance by going the weird route and made the most unusual album of their career.
4) "Friday, I'm in Love (Live)," The Cure. What Friday would Robert Smith love more than Friday the 13th?
5) "Don't Go," Yaz. I am man enough to dance with my hands over my head to this song.
Speaking of embarrassing sights, I got this text message from my friend Smokey, who is on her first trip to Vegas: "At XS at the Wynn, lots o people dacin on tables!" So it's not just me.
6) "Wish," Nine Inch Nails. My favorite song by Trent Reznor, and not just because it uses the phrase "fist fuck." The guitars cut through the speakers like Ginsu knives, and I dig how the snare drum beat manages to sound industrial without sounding like your usual industrial jackhammering. An awesome song for the gym or driving when angry.
7) "Sentimental Fool," Roxy Music. Kind of grungy for them, with the guitar walking around Bryan Ferry's pristine bachelor pad in its dirty bare feet, until Bryan comes back home and cleans up the mess. No vid, sadly.
8) "Quality of Armor," Guided by Voices. I think I read that Robert Pollard turned down an offer to license this for a car commercial. It's perfect for one: the chant of Oh yeah, I'm going to drive my car with the standard awesome GbV guitar line seems like the perfect accompaniment to images of a Chevy Stimulus SX driving near a cliff. I would have definitely taken the money because those videogames don't buy themselves.
9) "Lie," Dream Theater. I grabbed a bunch of music from my brother Snake Anthony, who, being an avid musician, tends to listen to some stuff that only avid musicians like. Dream Theater is supposed to be like Rush—hard prog for the progger who wants more double-bass drums and less Keith Emerson keyboard-farting. But I find Dream Theater to be soulless. Rush, for all their pun-inducing faults, have an organic feel, three guys who come together to make songs. This DT song feels like composition-by-committee, where every member has their contractually-obligated time to wank off. That's fine when you're Joe Satriani and everyone else is a musical fluffer there to support your wanking, but it's messy and kind of ugly when everyone's blowing their wads at once.
10) "Surprise, Honeycomb," The Wrens. Compare that to this Wrens song. There's all kinds of shit in the spin cycle here, little bits of guitar and noises swirling around and making this more than your standard hummable pop fare. Yet it still has personality. It's not in its room playing scales for 12 hours so it can dazzle other guys who like to play scales really fast.
11) "Razorblade Salvation," Jedi Mind Tricks. More stuff from Snake Anthony, who mentioned he had also gone on a hip-hop bender for a while. This is good, like Eminem if Eminem wasn't so FACKING annoying, but it also illustrates why I am not a true fan of rap: My least favorite aspect of rap songs like tends to be the rapping. I dig the samples here, the female vocals, the overall groove, and could completely live without the guy popping into to speak-sing about not killing himself. Still, a cool song and a great band name, although they should have an album called These Aren't the Rhymes You're Looking For.
Hidden bonus track
"My Generation (Live)," The Who. From Live at Leeds, the greatest live album of all time. The great thing about music, and especially live albums, is there's a chance someone will record you at your peak, that a moment where you are at your best will be preserved for all time. Here are one the best bands of all time, rocking fifteen minute jam of one of their best songs, at a time when they were playing better than they ever did. I wish that could have happened to me, someone recording me when I was 17 and courting TLB, during the brief 10-12 month period where I learned how to be cocky, but in a charming way, before my natural neuroses returned and dragged me back to my usual state. It would be cool to pop that recording in every so often.
Have an awesome weekend. We're supposed to be over 40 degrees for a few days, and I'm so happy, I'm considering going out and buying a gun so I can fire it in the air in celebration.