Sometimes, lo-fi is the way to go. This concert video was shot from the balcony at Weber State University in Ogden, UT, with only the camera mic officiating. The room itself was unwieldy, bright and blowsy on the main floor, with less-than-optimum help in the PA department. But with all that, the edgyness was mollified by the distance, and this worthwhile view of this climactic love scene from Vertigo was the result. The same concert video recording captured a likewise attractive-sounding performance of my arrangement for cello and piano of Radiohead’s “Pyramid Song”.
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Kris Saknussemm’s new novel of the road and redemption, Reverend America, is centered on the travels and travails of a retired child evangelist albino orphan named Casper (known in his healing days as Reverend America) and his wanderings as guardian angel and inadvertent and occasional avenger. I’d become aware of Kris’ work via his first novel, Zanesville, his subsequent bizarre-noir novel Private Midnight, and his exuberant alt-historical Enigmatic Pilot. We’d become Facebook friends where I found him to be equally knowledgeable and perhaps even more impassioned about things musical more than literary. So when he asked if I would contribute some original work to fill out a CD to accompany the release of Reverend America (I’d not written anything original since high school, being presently and for decades consumed either by interpretations classical or reimaginings on the non-classical side), and with his own keen idea of how music might intersect his prose, I told him I’d have to be an idiot to NOT know how to write something for him.
David “Davy” Jones passed away this week, shocking fans of the multi-talented singer. As a member of the Monkees, he was one of pop culture’s biggest teen idols, but his career consisted of so much more. So let’s take a look at his body of work through video highlights.
David got his big break in the role of the Artful Dodger in the successful Broadway play, Oliver!. As a part of the cast, he appeared on the same episode of The Ed Sullivan Show as the Beatles in their American television debut.
Earlier this year, PopMatters’ Robert Alford described Lost Lander’s latest record DRRT as “an album of honest and affecting songs that seamlessly combine elements of folk and pop with an innovative use of loop-based production techniques…. The instrumentation is inspired and gorgeous throughout.” That perfectly sums up the tune “Wonderful World”, which has new colorful, abstract video, which is designed to interact with DRRT‘s album art to create something of a mini art installation. DRRT is a small planetarium of sorts and you can watch this video on your iPhone, placing the phone inside the record’s artwork, which will then cast a light show on your ceiling when you flick the room’s lights off. Pretty clever.
The title of this short post pretty much says it all—except that the cover is gorgeous. If you’re looking for something that mixes up Slowdive’s original cut, this is not your cover. Beach Fossils play things pretty straight here, performing “Alison” quite faithfully. There’s a little less flange throughout, and, certainly, Rachel Goswell’s gorgeous harmonizing is absent. Nevertheless, this cover is just as comforting as a freshly laundered blanket. Go ahead. Curl up in it.