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***January Thirty First Two Thousand and Fourteen***

 

It's been cold as shit so far this winter.  It's family-friendly, bucolic scenes like this one that really help me through these
trying times.  


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I-grams:


Burt, snow, wonky ear.  Cary, NC.  


Mouse on the bed.  Cary, NC.  


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Best films of 2013!
I'm never going to get around to seeing everything I want or need to see that came out last year, so this is what I've got
for now.  

My top 5 of the year (in order):
Inside Llewyn Davis
The Way Way Back
Big Star: Nothing Can Hurt Me
Pacific Rim
Mud

Also damn good for various reasons (in alphabetical order):

Elysium
Killer Joe
The Kings of Summer
Miss You Can Do It
Twenty Feet from Stardom
The Wolf of Wall Street
World War Z
The World's End

Damn enjoyable movies from other years I saw this year for the first time (in alphabetical order):
The Bad Seed (1956)
Bullhead (2011)
Dear Zachary (2008)
Dredd (2012)
The House I Live In (2012)
Jiro Dreams of Sushi (2011)
Miami Connection (1987)
Room 237 (2012)
Sinister (2012)


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Only one link this time around...

The Indy, our local weekly paper used one of my photos for their review of the Perfect Pussy show.  My review will be
next month hopefully, or just read the one in the link for less rambling, more coherent wordsmithery.

Two new photo journal entries - band photos (Pontiak, Schooner, Libraness, Heather from Mount Moriah, and more)
and just a chunk of miscellaneous snaps from the last few months.  

In the Music reviews, still going through my old seven inches and posting poorly written reviews.  New music reviews
of note include Fuzz (which I thought I already had written about), Bad Sports, Belle & Sebastian, Cheap Time, and
more.  Counting both old and new reviews, I've posted about 53 different releases this month!  That's a lot of bullshitting.



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Midlake
Local 506
11/11/2013

I've been a huge fan of Midlake for years and seen them live a number of times - their 2006 album "The Trials of Van
Occupanther" would easily make my top ten records of the last decade.  But then their singer Tim Smith left before
they finished their most recent record "Antiphon," and honestly I didn't know how the hell their live show would turn out. 
You can lose a drummer or a guitarist and generally replace them fairly seamlessly, but losing the voice of the band is
another thing entirely.  Short of holding an international search for a new singer and finding a diminutive sound-alike
from the Philippines, they did the next best thing and just had guitarist Eric Pulido take over on the mic. 

Last time the band was in town they played at the Cradle - it wasn't full, but there was a healthy crowd there.  This time,
they're playing to a half-full Local 506.  Probably not a good sign, but I hope that doesn't serve as a deterrent for them
as a band or from returning to our area.  Even with the singer change, it still worked - they are still a fantastic group
both recorded and live.  The new lead vocals aren't spot on, but they're close enough.  they showed up with their own
pro lighting gear and a personal sound man, which is a funny sight for such a small club.  IT was such a tech set-up
they didn't have monitors but rather ear pieces, arena rock style.  The band did a good job mixing their new songs
with older tracks from "Van Occupanther" and "The Courage of Others," as it should be.  I really enjoyed myself tonight,
and I'm glad they are able to continue even with the change in frontman. 



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Pelican
with Coliseum
Local 506
11/4/2013

According to the band this was the first time Coliseum had ever played in the the Triangle in their ten years of exis-
tence.  A band bypassing our area for a long period of time isn't that strange, but given these guys are only from
Louisville it does seem odd they never would have toured here.  But hey, they're here now and that's what counts. 
I have heard from multiple friends that they put on a top-notch live show, and those reports turned out to be 100% true. 
Their records are enjoyable but they just can't measure up to the power and ferocity of the band on stage.  I'm not
sure if it's just me or a truism for the genre, but I find this often to be the case with heavy and/or metal bands.  These
cats are more than just metal though, I hear a distinct tinge of punk throughout most of their music - specifically, Black
Flag.  And then there wee a couple of other times when they approached a Queens of the Stone Age radio-friendly
hard rock vibe.  Regardless of sound, it was all great, and hopefully it's not ten more years before they come back. 

I might have been at the show slightly more for Coliseum, but I've been a fan of headliners Pelican for years, having
even seen them a good decade ago when I lived in San Francisco.  I don't remember much from that show other than
being there (at Bottom of the Hill I believe), so it was nice to get a refresher from this instrumental metal act.  I'm not
sure what to really say about them though - they sounded great, the songs rocked.  I've listened to their records but
couldn't tell you the name of any of their songs, which obviously isn't helped when the songs have no words.  If it was
me I would have flipped the order of the bands because Coliseum seemed a more fitting closer, but two good bands
is two good bands regardless of when you see them on a bill. 



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Built to Spill
with Slam Dunk
The Cat's Cradle
10/30/2013

I never tire of seeing Built to Spill live.  I've seen them dozens of times and like a fine wine they get better with age. 
At least this is what I'm told, I ain't one of them fancy yuppies what partakes in spoilt grape drink.  Brett Netson and the
other bald guitarist who isn't Doug Martsch were still with the band, but they had a new rhythm section.  Other than that
it was business as usual with a BtS live event - great songs. hot solos, and the always awful crowd they seem to attract. 
I guess that also says something about me but I'm old now and who gives a shit really.  This outing they played a lot
more older songs than usual, especially from "There's Nothing Wrong with Love" - "In the Morning," "Car," and "Big
Dipper" off the top of my head.  Other highlights included "Kicked It in the Sun," "Joyride," "Carry the Zero," plus a
couple of covers: Blue Oyster Cult's "(Don't Fear) The Reaper" and the Smiths' "How Soon Is Now?".  On the cover
songs in particular Doug and Brett really got to play up their guitar god status, they nailed all the riffs and solos per-
fectly.  I eagerly look forward to their return again next year.     

They had an interesting opener called Slam Dunk, and as is typical for Built to Spill they appeared to be friends of
theirs from the Pacific Northwest.  I guess they had sort of a "cow punk garage pop" thing going...imagine the Meat
Puppets crossed with the Craps crossed with some indie pop like Modest Mouse.  I seem to recall there being a lot
of shouting on stage.  As you might imagine with a combination of sounds like I heard, some songs were interesting
and enjoyable, and others were a bit of a mess.  I liked them more than I didn't though, and I'd check out their record
if I came across it. 



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"
No thank you, Delmar. One third of a gopher would only arouse my appetite without bedding it down. "

Pretty much the whole Michigan Nuggets comp is fantastic, these tracks are the best of the best in my eyes.  
Bob Seger - Heavy Music, Part 2
MC5 - I Can Only Give You Everything
? & the Mysterians - Can't Get Enough of You Baby
The Rationals - Leavin' Here
Tim Tam & the Turn-Ons - Wait a Minute
Unrelated Segments - Where You Gonna Go 

Lee Hazlewood - Hey Cowboy.  It's entirely possible I've posted both of these tracks before.  So be it.  
Bonus: No Train to Stockholm.  

My favorite tracks from the third disc of the Roy Orbison box set I bought a while back.
Breakin' Up Is Breakin' My Heart
Communication Breakdown
Goodnight
Unchained Melody
What'd I Say

The Mae Shi - Boys in the Attic.  The recordings of these guys never came close to their live show.  

The Secret Machines - Alone, Jealous and Stoned.  In the world of over blown major label indie rock, this group
was still pretty damn good.  Honestly if they would have been British I think they would have been huge.  





***January Second
Two Thousand and Fourteen***

   

As a christmas present to ourselves the wife and I decided to have a portrait made.  Dig that hip goat man!

Kind of a light update, what with the mid-month "best of" post in December, taking a trip to LA (photos next time), and,
of course, a large helping of laziness.


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Instagrams...


Burt sleeping on his face.  Cary, NC.


Local pond.  Cary, NC.


Mouse exploring outside.  Cary, NC.


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Jon Rafman - finding art through google street view.  It doesn't sound nearly as interesting as it actually is.  

Grant Taylor
officially made the move to Antihero, and even though the welcome video is likely just throwaway foot-
age filmed in the last couple of months, it's still nuts.  

One new Photo journal entry - band photos including Superchunk, Parting Gifts,  Birds of Avalon, Speedy Ortiz and a
few others.  

In the Music reviews I continue working through my old seven inches as I organize my collection.  New music reviews
of note include Polvo, ASG, and a couple of other things I wasn't overly excited about.



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Lovers
The Pinhook
10/25/2013

This is the second time I've gone to see Lovers at the Pinhook, and it's the second time I've rearranged my schedule
to do so.  The first time, I didn't exactly postpone my vacation so I wouldn't miss their show, but I definitely made the
vacation plans a day late because of it.  This time around I already had a ticket to the first night of Mountain Oasis for
the purpose of seeing Neutral Milk Hotel, and as soon as I saw Lovers were playing that same night I sold the shit out
of that ticket a soon as I could.  It was worth it. 

It is hard to say if the crowd was better this time around than a couple of years ago, but what we lacked in numbers we
made up for in enthusiasm.  Despite my constant prattling on about this band and trying to get my friends to give them
a chance, no one listens.  Never mind that I rarely listen when people suggest bands to me, that's not the point here! 
I did bring the wife with me just in an effort to make sure as many people were at the show as possible.  Their set list
was mostly songs from their last two records, the perfect "Dark Light" released in 2010 and their most recent release,
"A Friend in the World," which will definitely be found on my "best of" list at the end of the year.  They sounded fantastic,
especially the vocals, which drive their music.  I rarely talk to bands after the show but for the second time I kinda com-
pletely fanned out on them, lauding them with so much praise they probably thought I was screwing with them, but I
stand by everything I've ever said by them.  Brilliant, brilliant electro pop music that should be light years more popular,
but I'm partly glad I still have them to myself. 



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"Just answer me one question: Is Michael Cera's butthole as adorable as I pictured? "

Gentleman Jesse - Going Outta My Mind.  Some b-sides from one of the greatest pop song writers working today.
Bonus: I Don't Wanna Know (Where You Been Tonight).  
Bonus: Romford Girls (Riff Raff cover).  

Pernice Brothers - PCH One.  Joe Pernice kinda keeps writing the same song, but it works.  
Bonus: Somerville.

Porter Wagoner - A Satisfied Mind.  I don't really need to say anything about this guy right?!?
Bonus: Company's Comin'.
Bonus: I Can't Live With You (I Can't Live Without You).  
Bonus: Settin The Woods On Fire.  

The Coctails - China Song.  I listened to the shit out of these guys in college.  Since then, not so much.

The Extra Glenns - All Rooms Cable A/C Free Coffee.  Basically the Mountain Goats under a different name.  
Bonus: Going to Marrakesh.  

The Mountain Goats - No Children.  Definitely the Mountain Goats not under a different name.

The Parting Gifts - (Walking Through The) Sleepy City.  Reigning Sound + The Ettes = pretty awesome.  
Bonus: Keep Walking.  





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