Thursday, September 27, 2007

Well I took some advice from the comment-leaver the other day and bought NMH - Avery Island and Blonde Redhead - In and Expression of the Inexpressible (a random album choice). I went back again today and bought Simon & Garfunkel's Greatest Hits - partly just for the cover.

Sick stache. I would have bought the first CYHSY album either time but Amoeba - the largest independent music store on Planet Earth does not have it. This vexes me. I'm terribly vexed.

First shallow impressions: NMH is rough and raw, but you can clearly see what elements were successful and thus were carried over to the more unified and very nearly perfect In the Aeroplane Over the Sea. I love the first song on Avery Island already, but I hear a lot of missteps and there are some truly unlistenable passages. Yes, I know it's art but I don't care, I want to listen to music.

Blonde Redhead kind of bores me. No, I have not listened to it much, but it definitely sounds dated (it was released in '98) moreso than anything by NMH which is pretty timeless. I guess I'll just have to listen more.

Paul Simon kills me on the guitar. He is filthy and makes me look like a lout. Incredible harmonies too. I feel like their songs should be taught in school or something.

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

I am a video game nerd so I find the following articles fascinating. They are two different points of view on the ramifications of the Wii's technical limitations, both written by editors (I think) from

The first was posted as a response to an article by N'gai Croal of Newsweek (who is quickly becoming one of my favorite writers; he's kind of like the Malcolm Gladwell of the gaming industry), and it came to my attention via Bill Harris's fantastic blog Dubious Quality.

The second I found on Beyond3D's website after doing some poking around, and it's a reponse to the response of N'gai's article. Comprendes?

The first article

The response

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Ignore yesterday's post. I tried to start screen printing and in the immortal words of Chris Farley, I need to rethink my inks. I'm starting over, and hopefully wisdom will come with age.

In the meantime, check out this crazy video (video game related). I can't imagine how much time and effort went into this thing.

Monday, September 24, 2007

I spent most of the day yesterday setting up the screen for screenprinting. I am doing it the 'correct' way this time - using the photo emulsion method - and I can't believe it actually worked. It looks great... but then again I haven't actually printed anything yet. That will happen tonight. But this was the last major hurdle; now there are only a couple of things left to do and the album will be out.

I have a new appreciation for music labels now. Getting everything together for a full-length album takes an incredible amount of work, particularly as a one man operation.

I am way down on pro football right now. As I have mentioned many times before, the Wages of Wins has changed the way I view sports. They have conclusively (to me) proven that NFL players are far more inconsistent year to year than basketball players are over the course of their entire career. This fact, coupled with a tiny season (only 16 regular season games) makes football a total crapshoot. Yet I have to sit and listen to talking heads who think they actually know something, or rather, can know something.

I checked out the espn 'experts' picks page today. I tallied up all their picks and they are currently 62% correct. This means, over a 16-game season, they will pick a team's wins or losses correctly roughly 10 times. A full six games, or over 1/3 of the season, will be incorrect, and that's an average. True, there are only three weeks worth of picks at this time, and it will be interesting to see how well they pick over the course of an entire season. I'm guessing their percentage will rise because as more games are played it will be clearer, to an extent, which teams are actually better or worse.

So that's why I'm so down on football. A team may win, or it may lose, and it doesn't necessarily mean anything at all. It's like the difference between playing Texas Hold 'em and War; one primarily takes an element of skill, the other takes luck. I'm a fan of sports where fundamental truths can be unearthed mathematically.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

The Arcade Fire are playing the Hollywood Bowl tonight and I'm not going. I remember back when tickets went on sale, which was shortly after I saw them at The Greek Theater. I could have jumped on it but instead decided to just wait and figure it out later. Now I feel like Ron Burgundy after jumping into the bear pit - I immediately regret that decision.

Then again it's supposed to rain tonight (for the first time in maybe nine months), so perhaps the show will be less than stellar. Keep telling yourself that.

Now I am making a list of CDs to buy. You might think that I listen to a lot of music and have an extensive collection, but I don't. I would say I listen to music occasionally, and only rarely do I buy something new. Now that I work near Amoeba Music I'll probably just stop in there and poke around. My list of possible/potential purchases looks like this:

Sufjan Stevens
Neutral Milk Hotel - Avery Island
Bloc Party
Clap Your Hands Say Yeah
Broken Social Scene
Death Cab
Arctic Monkeys
Blonde Redhead
Jose Gonzalez

Some of these bands I barely know, so tell me what you think. The only 'for sure's are probably NMH and CYHSY. Maybe an old BSS CD that I know I like too. But you never know what you'll find at Amoeba.

I feel like I wrote about the last time I bought CDs, when I got Arcade Fire, Explosions in the Sky and Of Montreal. I was promised by several friends that I would love Of Montreal. It didn't happen, and I really tried.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Had a little snafu with the site earlier - it was down for I don't know how long. Just forgot to renew my credit card info so everything should be fine now... and if it isn't, then you're not reading this.

I have a nice view of downtown LA and South Hollywood from my new office window. Yes, I now have a window complete with natural sunlight to enjoy for 8 hours a day. This is a major event for me.

I have a brief respite from visitors for about three days so I will get a lot of work done. The CD might actually come out in September (!)

Monday, September 17, 2007

Here is an idea. If you want a CD, but don't want to pay for it, then do a write up of LOP on your blog or website or whatever and send me the link. Or graffiti it up on your local goverment building, that works too. It's a music-for-marketing trade, and everybody wins.

Other than that, no news is good news right?

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Chicago tiene muchos cervezerias. Me gusta. Fuimos a Mambo Grill, Kerryman y Streeters ayer. Hay mucho divertido con mi amigo Dennis, llamamos un otro amigo y se damos seis o siete mensajes a las dos en la noche.

No se si este espanol esta correcte.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Chicagoland is my kind of town. It's like Ohio weatherwise and everyone here says 'pop' instead of 'soda', but it's an actual city. Cleveland, sadly, is more like a sophisticated farm.

The place I am working at is one block from the Sears Tower, and the place I am staying at is one place from the John (Herbie) Hancock Center. Give me some MGD cause I am living the high life. I went up to the observation deck of the Sears Tower today and only realized shortly beforehand that today is September 11 and the Sears Tower is the tallest building in America. I was as worried as you would expect.

I got some great pictures but of course I forgot the cord to connect my camera to my laptop. So those will be coming soon. For now enjoy the above picture of our ride in Guadalajara as it sat waiting for me to see what street we were on, since we were lost at the time.

I'm rereading 'Surely You Must Be Joking Mr. Feynman' and I don't think I can recommend a book any higher.

Earlier I mentioned that the album is done. It is, but the covers are not. I am still missing one piece of the puzzle, but once I get that in order I will not only have a new album for sale, I will also have expert knowledge of the photo emulsion method of screen printing.

Tonight I decided to cover a Billy Joel song too.

Sunday, September 9, 2007

It's been the busiest week imaginable, and tomorrow I fly to Chicago for the whole week. But know this: the album is done.