Friday, September 28, 2012

Friday Random 11

It’s one more random than 10!

Gott im Himmel, I almost went a whole month without updating the blog. Where the fuck did September go? It was one of those blurs that was mostly good—a lot of fun stuff, a buttload of great weather getting me outside, the start of obsessing about all things football, and also a lot of work, which is good in that it means I have a job.

I have missed my little Friday afternoon rendezvous, however. Being able to not only listen to music but also express poorly thought out, meandering, and often typo-filled blogs on said music is hugely satisfying, even if this blog doing an imitation of a Norwegian blue parrot pining for the fjords may make it an exercise in musical missive masturbation this week. Good thing I like a lot of wank in my rock.

1) “Galileo,” Indigo Girls. My initial instinct was to type, “This is TLB’s!” However, despite my fondness for dick jokes, I don’t want to be a penis. The IGs may not be my cup of green tea with lemon and honey and just a hint of nutmeg, but I don’t like to have that knee-jerk-off male reaction to Lillith-rock, as if the very sound of two women singing is going to get me on my knees faster than a male intern for a closeted GOP Congressman. Some of the music I listen to is primordial in its level of male juvenileness and is 1000 hit points more embarrassing than a catchy little folk-rock song with pretty harmonies.

2) “Back Door Love,” Graham Parker. iTunes, however, feels the need to overcompensate. Or perhaps is pushing me toward gay marriage.

3) “Vagabonds,” Gary Louris. One of those albums I’ve had for a long time and never listened to. I was never a big Jayhawks fan (why, I don’t really know), but this is good stuff.

Speaking of vagabonds (tangent alert!), the advantage of working at home is that you often get to dress like a vagabond. The disadvantage is that you often look like a vagabond. I have been in vagabond territory for a while, in large part because having a four-year old who loves to wake me up in the middle of the night makes me cling to every possible minute of sleep I can get before I trudge downstairs for coffee and work. This week, though, I reached a breaking point when I woke up, wore the clothes I slept in while working, remained in those clothes after work, and slept in those clothes again. For a fastidious metrosexual like myself, I may as well have been squatting in a filthy cave while wearing a dire wolf hide in bad need of dry cleaning. So yesterday, I showered, shaved, and put a collared shirt on before working. Damn if I didn’t have my most productive day in a month. So my solution is to get matching magnetic sheets and pajamas for my daughter so she unable to escape her bed at night, allowing me to get the sleep I need to have enough time and enthusiasm for a shower.

4) “Kiss Me Dudely,” Torche. Helmet-style hard rock sung by one of the rare openly-gay hard rock frontmen, doubly funny to me because I owned the Lita Ford album for which the pun is based. This is far less gay.

5) “Love Is the Seventh Wave,” Sting. Despite being recorded after The Police, the first couple of Sting’s solo albums sound much, much older than The Police stuff to me. I still think Dream of the Blue Turtles is both good and his best solo album, but the stuff packed into these songs—smooth jazz, world beats, a little bit of Bobby McFerrin-ness on this song, the super-clean thin production, expressing brotherly love without using some form of "bro," a complete lack of irony, and Sting at his Stingiest—make it a bit of a musical Cosby sweater.

6) “Tickle Mountain,” Fang Island. While listening to this on my iPod, I stopped to take a picture and send it to my brother Tickle. Just a picture of the iPod screen. For all the amazing things that we can do in our mobile iShare culture, it’s dumb shit like this that I enjoy the most. Facebook should just be called OneLinerBook, because that’s what I used it for about 93% of the time. Tickle is the same way. For someone who used to HATE cell phones, he couldn’t live without his phone. How else would I get a text message at 3:17 am that has a picture of his cat wearing a collar with dice on it, a cock lamp, and his brother-in-law lasciviously eating an ice cream cone?

7) “Heart of the Sunrise,” Yes. Yes is close enough to talk about the amazing Rush show I saw this month. I ventured out to Northern Virginia again to see them with my friend Tom, and again we took a limo to the event, traveling with two other dudes and a bona-fide diehard Rush dudette. Why a limo? Because when you’re going to see a band nearing 60 play a three-hour show, including most of their new concept album that centers around a man making his way across a steampunk universe searching for the elusive Watchmaker (which has also been novelized!), why the fuck wouldn’t you take a limo? For added brownie points the limo had these 1987 prom lights in the ceiling, which almost made me wish I was wearing a full tuxedo and cummerbund. I would have been surely immortalized online as Tuxedo Rush Fan, especially if my cummerbund had “2112” on it. Sure, my wife wouldn’t touch me again with a double-necked bass guitar, but fame always has a price. Alas, I was only wearing my Rash shirt.

Anyway, the story of the evening was that the male-female ratio was the most even I’ve ever seen. It was my sixth Rush show dating back to 1988, and up until a couple years ago, the few women I saw at Rush concerts looked like they were live-action roleplaying or had clearly lost bets with their boyfriends. However, it was probably 4:1 dudes this time, and many of the women looked normal and appeared to be attending of their free will. Sure, still mostly Tom Sawyer, but with enough Becky Thatcher to at least flirt with the concept that the women in attendance would have to wait for a bathroom stall. I sat next to a woman—not even the one who came with us—who seemed to be enjoying herself almost as much as her male companion. Behind us, and blowing my mind, were two unaccompanied female Rush fans. They weren’t doing any guys a favor, they weren’t there because they dug that song with Aimee Mann. They were there because they wanted to be. I would have been less surprised by a female president of Saudi Arabia than the female turnout at the show.

So, yeah, it was awesome.

8) “Once,” Pearl Jam. One thing I learned from this Rush experience: I cannot pour a mixed drink to save my life when using a Solo cup. We had those in the limo, and I got stuck being the bartender. I don’t know if it’s the inability to see the booze level or if drinking out of Solo cups takes me back to high school mixology where mixers were simply there to make the alcohol slide down your esophagus faster, but I was pouring about a fist of vodka into those drinks. I partied like a rock star, but was hungover like a 42-year old dad who was pretty sure at least one and perhaps as many as three internal organs had liquefied the night before.

9) “Stay Free,” The Clash. The proliferation of reunion tours really makes me sorry Joe Strummer died relatively young. Sure, maybe a reunion would have seemed more Cash than Clash, but to see Strummer and Mick Jones playing stuff like this would have been worth a few corporate-sponsored ideals.

10) “Slow Drip,” Superchunk. When I was still going to the gym—which my 42-year-old expanding ass needs to desperately start doing again—I was on a major Superchunk kick when doing any cardio. I liked to imagine myself as the lead singer, playing Grant Park during Lollapalooza, because I a) need some pretty serious fantasies to distract myself from how out of breath I am and b) the lack of breath and excess of sweat enhances the fantasy of thrashing around a stage in the middle of July in Chicago. I feel foolish when thinking about this stuff at my age, but then again, when my dad was 42, he took my Guns N Roses tapes to the gym to work out to. For all I know, he was fantasizing about singing about heroin addiction, street urchins, and women with eyes like the bluest skies. Whatever gets you exercising.

11) “Head Over Heels,” The Go-Go’s. The breakdown in the middle always picks me up. A splendid song for heading into the weekend!


zombie rotten mcdonald said...

Well, finally. Seriously, nobody's left except me and thunder, and you KNOW how that turns out.

"Stay Free" is one of my favoritest Clash songs, even if it is much more personal than political.

Personally, I am coming off a mind-bending string of music shows; Kelly Hogan, Elvis Costello, Matthew Sweet. Upcoming is Bell X1 and then the Mountain Goats, with some English Beat/ Paul Collins thrown in.

ifthethunderdontgetya™³²®© said...

I fight with mikey all the time, zrm.

It doesn't have to be a personal grudge match to the death.

Substance McGravitas said...

However, it was probably 4:1 dudes this time

Spoke like a true Rush-justifier.

zombie rotten mcdonald said...

but I was pouring about a fist of vodka into those drinks.

You say that like it is a problem.

zombie rotten mcdonald said...

5) “Love Is the Seventh Wave,” Sting.

True, and boring, to everybody but me, story: I saw Sting on that tour, at the relatively new Marcus Amphitheater during Summerfest. He had a stellar, lithe band that was able to go from the MOR jazz-aging white dude stylings to slightly funky New Wave rendition of Police songs. And his voice was shot, kind of negating the whole thing.

Saw the Police reunion in the same damn place, and it was so much better, but Elvis Costello blew them off the stage.

Anyways, the upshot is that Out of his solo work, I like the live document of that first tour, "Bring On The Night". It's not as soporific.

zombie rotten mcdonald said...

Oops, silly me. I saw Sting on his first solo tour, not the Seventh Wave one. I apologize, all his solo work kind of blurs together for me.

zombie rotten mcdonald said...

Also and hey when you do a music post don't you just EXPECT a slew of zombicomments?- Head over Heels is one of the best in a long line of awesome Go-Gos songs.

Yes, I've seen them. At Summerfest.

And trivia: Belinda Carlisle was the original drummer for the Germs, but missed their first performances because of illness. Her loss.

Brando said...

I really like Bring on the Night.. His backing band was great and the reworkings of the Police songs were inspired. That's the only Sting album I still play.

Jennifer said...


Although, as it says at the bottom, they're not actually meant for that, but they're close.