Strange Observation

This is the strangest entry I'll ever write (an amazing feat considering) but I just came back from the gym (shock!) and I've noticed something: My legs are looking thinner. Actually my thighs are looking thinner which is even more fantastic than just my legs looking thinner. This whole eating less thing is really working! Yay me!


Spiralling in Lucid Dreams But I Never Miss a Beat

[On a side note, before I even start the entry: God I'm so clever]
"Spiralling" - Keane
Keane has always had the potential to be incredibly emo. The band's lyrics are incredibly depressing, even when the song itself is in a major key. What stops Keane from being the emo kings is the main song writer, Tim Rice-Oxley's, proclivity for technological experimentation. Rice-Oxley's love of synthesizer and sound effects, as well as the band's overall aesthetic, keeps Keane's depressing lyrics from turning the band into another one-note band. This fact is crystallized in Keane's latest single "Spiralling." If one was to simply read the lyrics, with no knowledge of what the actual song sounded like or who the band was, it could be assumed that "Spiralling" was by a run of the mill emo band. However Keane's heavy use of synthesizer, drum effects, and various digital doo-hickeys along with Tom Chaplin distinctive vocals mark the song as one by Keane, who are anything but run of the mill. The only part that can't be taken seriously by anyone who has heard "Once in a Lifetime" is the spoken bridge, which just sounds too ridiculous coming from Tom Chaplin. In all other aspects "Spiralling" is an interesting and musically adventurous song that leads Keane's sound in a new direction without being jarring. Grade: B+

"Lucid Dreams" - Franz Ferdinand
Franz Ferdinand have always been clever. Since their debut, the band has been able to write pop music that has depth without sounding pretentious. With "Lucid Dreams" Franz Ferdinand returns to the dance floor that they came from while continuing on the intellectual, and at times nonsensical, path that their lyrics have been going down since their second album. The band also continues it's musical expansion in its incorporation of mood-setting instrumentation and guitar effects while Alex Kapranos reaches into his falsetto range during "Lucid Dreams" chorus and bridge. The band also more fully incorporate the keyboards that had taken a back seat on their second album which gives the song a fuller and more danceable sound. It seems that despite their long absence Franz Ferdinand are still quite clever. Grade: A

"Never Miss A Beat" - Kaiser Chiefs
Kaiser Chiefs biggest problem is that they must be listened to repeatedly before being appreciated. Unlike their peers, Kaiser Chiefs tend to write songs that must be listened to a few times before the inherent good qualities can be heard. Sometimes a few times turns into 10 times, but eventually the good in the song will come through. In the past Nick Hodgson, the man behind the majority of the band's catalogue, has been able to write a few tunes that are instantly loveable by the masses. This time however it seemed that he was unable to produce such a song. "Never Miss a Beat" consists of boring instrumentals and inane lyrics and can be described as mediocre at best. At worst it's a poorly written try at social commentary from a band that can do so much better. Kaiser Chiefs are no strangers to making a socio-political point, but in "Never Miss a Beat" the band comes across as platitude spewing rockers. But, as with the majority of the Kaiser Chiefs catalogue, it has it's redeeming qualities. It just might take a few listens to hear. Grade: C


Horny Teenage Sex (or A Discussion of BPM)

I have to put this up now or I'll forget and moment will pass and all will be forgotten. I love Alex Kapranos.
"The last record was fast, furious, frantic, 150 beats per minute," said frontman Alex Kapranos. "It was like a teenager having sex. This one's a bit more assured and a bit friendlier for the dancefloor. It's about 104/105bpm."
By the way, bpm stands for beats per minute. 150bpm, to another less wonderful metaphor, is a very fast walk or medium paced jog while 104/105 is more a regular walk (most pop songs are around that bpm I suspect.) But yeah, I like Alex's metaphor a lot better, just because it equates musical terminology with sex. Very amusing.


Random News From Tuesday

My sociology prof asked me today what it would take to get me to listen to politicians. I said that they would have to say something new, something I hadn't heard a millions times over the past year or so. What I didn't say was "Absolutely nothing because I've given up on politics and politicians ever meaning anything to me ever again." I think that would have been a bit too disheartening for her.
In other news I'm trying to decide whether I should put up my new Ministry of Silly Walks poster and if so, should O'Keeffe or Matisse get the axe. It's a tough choice, but I'm leaning towards yes and Matisse.
Finally I had to let the whole of my music theory class see, and perform, one my horrible compositions. I hate everything I compose and that's never going to change. Never.


Passive Aggressive Bitch

Here's a word to the wise from one very passive aggressive bitch: Do not get in between me and my radio show. If you do I will write you a passive aggressive note and post on the radio station door. An anonymous note mind you, but still quite mean in a passive aggressive way. I love my radio show, it's the only time I actually get to work on the skills I will need one day as a radio engineer, so if you mess with me I'll be anonymously aggressive and potentially embarrassing. Mind you next weeks station meeting will be awkward, but I don't care. This is my time on air they were fucking with and I already had the whole show sketched out in my head. So, in conclusion I'm a passive aggressive bitch, so don't piss me off.
On a completely different subject, OMG!!! Gossip Girls is my sugary TV addiction. I loves that show so much, it's horrible.


Watch Your Phraseology!

A few months ago I wrote an entry about a line from the Proclaimers' song "I'm Gonna Be (500 Miles)" were I explained what a certain couplet meant because I didn't know what it meant and found the definition interesting. Well, I'm going to do the exact same thing with another song, this time by Supergrass, for exactly the same reasons. However my reason for figuring out the lyrics is slightly different, but still related to boredom so I won't get into the nitty-gritty details. Let's just say I was bored and wanted the issue cleared.
The line in mind is from the song "Alright" which is from Supergrass' first album I Should Coco which was released in 1995. The line is as follows:
We are young, we run green
Now I had deciphered the last bit as something else, but I was intrigued by what "run green" meant. So I googled the phrase and came up with this:
Run Green: the act of selling pot.
Unlike with havering this definition was more logical, but still interesting given the context within the song and actions taken in later verses (driving a car into a fence and still be alright for instance.) So there you have it, your little slang lesson for today.
Hopefully I'll be posting more in this blog in the coming weeks due to an onslaught of interesting releases. In fact Jenny Lewis comes out with her first/second solo effort this upcoming Tuesday and then three weeks later Keane comes out with their third album. Ben Folds enters the picture as well and of course there's the highly anticipated third album from Kaiser Chiefs, which will doubtless get it's own song by song review. Until then, keep listening.
Oh! Radio starts next week! Monday's 7-8 at wmwc.umw.edu. Be sure to listen ;D Also, kudos to anyone who gets the movie reference I'm making the entry title.

Meaningless Stuff and Marxism

I've got things to post and figured I might as well do it as a preface to my small rant on Revolution seekers. So here are the links in headline form:
NO BILL!! Don't leave us!! We love you ever so much and no one can replace you. Literally. No one
I know this is a comic, but you don't throw Abbey Road like a Frisbee!!!! You just don't, even in make believe land. It hurts me on the inside.
Now for the Revolution seekers rant. Yay rants!
According to Marxist theory first came feudalism. I can't say with an accuracy how long feudalism lasted, but it was definitely more than two hundred years. Much more than two hundred years in my estimate. Marx then states that capitalism came second and the last phase in History (and yes, the capital "h" is necessary) will be communism. Marx doesn't say how communism will work really or when communism will occur, only that it will be preceded by the Revolution which will be followed by socialism. So, to paraphrase, feudalism leads to capitalism which will lead to the Revolution which ends with socialism and finally communism. Communism, as my Western Civ II prof put, is a bit like Paradise or nirvana. Nobody knows what it really is, but its gonna be great. The idea of communism is so wonderful to so many people that certain types are always trying to ignite or look for the signs of the Revolution. Now, here is my issue with that mind set: If feudalism lasted so long, why are you constantly looking for signs or a means to start the Revolution when capitalism has only been around for 200-300 years (if that, my math and dates are a little fuzzy)? Surely capitalism is going to last a few more centuries before it petters out and the Revolution occurs. To my mind that's far more logical than feudalism getting to last 500 or more years and capitalism only getting to last only 200/300 years. But then again I'm not a die-hard Marxist or socialist so my opinion is voided by those standards alone. Still, the Great Depression didn't bring about the Revolution and our economy is pretty close to that right now. So why would the Revolution start now and not then?


Tonight's News, Pt. 2

I've somehow managed to get roped into being section leader for the altos in chorus. Prof. Tavernier decided that we needed to assign section leaders tonight at rehearsal and so when nobody from the section volunteered she moved on. I figured that someone would volunteer after the two soprano sections had chosen section leaders, but I was wrong. No one volunteered and so Prof. T chose me for no particular reason, at least in my opinion. She might have picked me because I was in the front row, who knows. The reason this is a bad thing is because last year I never went to any of my required sectionals because I always decided I didn't have time to go. This year I'm actually quite busy what with classes, rehearsals, and lab hours. But because I've disappointed Prof. T enough I said I would be section leader. I'm an idiot apparently.
I'm also currently experiencing eye problems. Monday night something got in my eye, I rubbed it in an effort to get it out of my eye and then went to sleep. I spent the majority of yesterday rubbing said eye and making the whole thing a lot worse. I thought it was allergies, but upon further investigation last night I can say with no authority that I scratched the outermost surface of my right eyeball near the tear duct (which I believe is called the cornea, but I've no clue.) In an effort to decrease the pain and inflammation I wore my glasses all last night and all of today. My right eye now looks mostly normal, but I'm going to avoid wearing my contacts until I can't see the scratch anymore. Hopefully that will be just a few more days since I'm incredibly vain and have a band performance on Saturday. I was rather panicked when I realized that the problem wasn't allergies and my right eye looked mostly red in the corner, but I've since gotten over that initial worry. As Mums said, I just need to let it heal on it's own, like a cut on my leg.
On a final note, I would like to point out that a certain lead singer is still ridiculously good looking and a certain drummer really should shave off his ridiculous moustache because he looks like an idiot.

Tonight's News, Pt. 1

So my initial fury at Kaiser Chiefs has waned considerably due to two things: Band has become a living hell and I need to constantly remind myself that the band is actually good at making music and "Never Miss a Beat" is an anomaly. Let's start with the first issue.
I haven't mentioned band in any entries recently because it's too horrible to think about. If I think about how crappy band is I become annoyed and annoyance and frustration aren't going to do any good. You see the scholarship I get from the music department is dependant on my performing in band. Also the reason I get paid $6.70 a week is partially due to the fact that I am both the band aide and a lab aide. Drop one and I lose scholarship money and job money. Since I'm hoping to put some of that into a nest egg for when I graduate, kinda can't lose any of it. And while both those factors are important and good reasons for not thinking about how crappy band is, the other, more salient and less money involved reason, is that Prof. Bartram (who is making band a living hell) will go back to being just the orchestra conductor at the end of this year and Prof. Naylor will be back and band will be wonderfully fun again. So, to summarize, band is crappy because Prof. Bartram treats us like we are high school students and makes me want to bash my head in with all his nonsense about breathing (which everyone should be able to do since we're in college). However I have no choice but to ignore this horribleness and wait with anticipation for next year when I will graduate back to college.
The second issue (KC are good at making music and "Never Miss a Beat" is ananomly) has to do with the fact that, after breaking down and listening to Employment, I decided that I should give "Never Miss a Beat" a proper listen instead of one where I'm not really paying attention. I listened to the song three times. It's crap. Sophs said it was a badly done derivative of a b-side the band recorded three years ago called "Sink that Ship" but I think it draws from the bands desperate desire to be socially and politically relevant. But no matter the source material, the outcome is mediocre at best and shitty at worst. The verses have no real meaning and the chorus is utterly pathetic. Worse than "Ruby" which in my opinion is really saying something. Sophs' hope is that Mark Ronson, who produced most of the album, hasn't ruined the band, but I don't think it has anything to do with Ronson. Being socially relevant is hard when you're writing for a pop audience (reference: the entirety of Rip It Up and Start Again) and while I'll never stop loving this band (no matter how many times I try to stop loving them) they are at their best when their social relevance is either vague or life-based. I somehow doubt that any of the members of KC "know nothing" and so the platitudes that fill the verses and chorus sound idiotic. Write what you know about applies to song writing as well.
What all of this boils down to though is something I've said before and will more than likely repeat over and over and over: KC are the aural equivalent of chocolate for me and always will be.
Part Two of Tonight's News will be posted shortly.


Just When I Thought Things Were Getting Better

It's amazing how a cd release can suck you back into a world you thought you had escaped (except of course in your sick, sick mind.) Well it seems I have been sucked back into the world of Kaiser Chiefs much to my distracted, fearsomely angered mind. And, to make it so much worse, my sister told me that the band had made a video for their new single. I haven't actually watched it per se, but I did listen to it while I was closing up the media lab tonight. It sounds vaguely familiar, as in: "Gosh this sounds like an natural progression from YTAM" kind of vaguely familiar. That got me all worked up because it doesn't take a lot to get worked up. Then I got an email from the band, 3 days late mind you, that informed that Of With Their Heads won't be coming out until the 28th. Which is a week later than the rest of the world. Seems some packaging shit postponed the release every where else. Now, none of the sites have changed their information and poor Bliss is going to be left in a very bad rut because their having a little release party 3 days before the actual release. I changed my facebook status to "Nore needs to find a new favourite band." Because I do. Really.
I'm watching Gossip Girl right now, which is making my life a bit better. Teen melodrama is a wonderful distraction. That and House which happen after GG. Stupid British whore-mongers. -_-


Squee!! Boo

Squee: The IT Crowd is coming to the States in it's original form!! Yayness and cheer was heard throughout the land
Small Preface: What I'm about to boo, I haven't actually watched. You see if I watch I won't be able to stop and I like my sanity. That's all I really have to say.
Boo: Stupid band I'm horribly obsessed with has come out with a single. It's called Never Miss A Beat. It has a video. They are stupid and ruin my life. Because I'm horribly obsessed 0_0
Also, I went to the gym today. Sadly my dinner, lunch, and dessert have voided out any calories I burned, so it was really for nought. Except of course for the fact that I figured out my natural gait can cover about 2.5 miles in an hour. Thanks Mums!



I'm not often touched by the things I read online. Unless of course it has to do with one my bands, but that's a different kind of touched that has nothing to with the quality of writing. The touched of which I speak of has to do with writing quality and for all the wonderful blogs I read it's not often I get touched. I might agree with an opinion but most of the time it's an intellectual thing, not an emotional thing. Tonight I was actually touched by something I read online. The Last Bus Home is a blog I've been reading for quite awhile now and I mostly read it to get an understanding of what it's like to actually live in London. The man who writes the blog is, like most bloggers, an excellent writer and I've always gotten the feeling that his is an accurate glimpse into the life of a Londoner. Sadly a friend of his passed away recently and yesterday he posted a blog in remembrance of his friend. I doubt I could have written something so eloquent.


How to Punch Oasis in the Face

There are few things in life that make me happier than a good bit of Oasis-bashing. Of course when I say a few I mean quite a lot, but Cracked wrote an excellent article on "How to punch Oasis in the face." The article comes in light of the fact that Noel Gallagher was shoved on stage during a performance in Canada this past weekend. The person who did the shoving has been found, etc, but I like bashing Oasis not coddling them. So, how do you punch Oasis in the face? Cracked will be more than happy to explain.
Sadly, there are other people in the media lab right now, or I would still be laughing my ass off. :'(


Some Lyrics to Pass the Time

That's how it starts.
We go back to your house.
We check the charts,
And start to figure it out.

And if it's crowded, all the better,
because we know we're gonna be up late.
But if you're worried about the weather
then you picked the wrong place to stay.
That's how it starts.

And so it starts.
You switch the engine on.
We set controls for the heart of the sun,
one of the ways we show our age.

And if the sun comes up, if the sun comes up, if the sun comes up
and I still don't wanna stagger home.
Then it's the memory of our betters
that are keeping us on our feet.

You spent the first five years trying to get with the plan,
and the next five years trying to be with your friends again.

You're talking 45 turns just as fast as you can,
yeah, I know it gets tired, but it's better when we pretend.

It comes apart,
the way it does in bad films.
Except in parts,
when the moral kicks in.

Though when we're running out of the drugs
and the conversation's winding away.
I wouldn't trade one stupid decision
for another five years of lies.

You drop the first ten years just as fast as you can,
and the next ten people who are trying to be polite.
When you're blowing eighty-five days in the middle of France,
Yeah, I know it gets tired only where are your friends tonight?

And to tell the truth.
Oh, this could be the last time.
So here we go,
like a sail's force into the night

And if I made a fool, if I made a fool, if I made a fool
on the road, there's always this.
And if I'm sewn into submission,
I can still come home to this.

And with a face like a dad and a laughable stand,
you can sleep on the plane or review what you said.
When you're drunk and the kids leave impossible tasks
you think over and over, "hey, I'm finally dead."

Oh, if the trip and the plan come apart in your hand,
you look contorted on yourself your ridiculous prop.
You forgot what you meant when you read what you said,
and you always knew you were tired, but then,
where are your friends tonight?

Where are your friends tonight?
Where are your friends tonight?

If I could see all my friends tonight,
If I could see all my friends tonight,
If I could see all my friends tonight,
If I could see all my friends tonight

Thinking Too Much

I've been trying to avoid thinking too hard about my life and what I'm going through right because if I do think about it, I become depressed. I'm not in a particularly bad place, so much as my social life is lacking a considerable amount of socialness. But the condrum I face is that if I think about this lack of a real social life, I become depressed, which leads to inertia on all fronts including school. And so I'm left with what I see as two options: Do nothing about my social life and focus on not being depressed so I can do well in school or try and do something about my social life, become depressed about the whole situation, and do badly in school. The reason I see it this way is because my ultimate goal for college (other than graduating obviously) is to study abroad my junior year. To do that I have to have a certain overall GPA that is considerably higher than I've ever achieved. So when thinking about my predicatment (which trust me only occurs on Saturdays when I have nothing going on and am sitting by myself in my room) I tend to think about it in terms of my performance in school versus my overall happiness. Since there is plenty outside of social interaction that makes me happy I try to focus on those things and not the fact that I basically have no friends, eat all of my meals alone, and spend most of my time after classes alone in my room. Which isn't nearly as easy as it sounds. My one fervent hope is that I meet someone who latches onto me so that I can say I have at least one friend. Sure, I may end up resenting them to a certain degree, but at least I'll have a friend. All of which I try not to think about too much because it makes me depressed and I can't deal with depression right now.


Definitions and Categories

This is well sad but I have to say it anyway: Please do not use the term "post-punk" without a more specific reference. I get confused easily and there's a whole lot of shit that falls on the very vague category of "post-punk" and if you're not more specific (or I've never heard the band in my life) I might be thinking of something completely different from what you're thinking. For instance you might be thinking Joy Division and I might be thinking the Raincoats. Very different.
:sighs: I should just stop reading things. Life would be so much easier if I didn't try to know everything. Sadly I've been reading non-fiction since elementary school, so I doubt the reading will stop now. :sigh:


If I Could Think of a Title, It Wouldn't Be This

I don't have anything I can say. I have a lot I would like to say, but I can't actually form the words to write out what is going on in my head. Despite outward appearances I have a lot that I've been thinking about, a lot I've been experiencing and mulling over but for some reason I can't make the lot coherent on the page. Or screen as it were. I'm assuming that eventually it will come out, but for now, just know that I have a lot that I'm going through right now, some good, quite a lot not so good, none bad, and that if I could write about it I would. The world I'm living in now is just kind of strange.
There are three things I can write out though. The first is that the DW/Sci-Fi club that Hunter wanted to start has officially been started. I don't know if it's an official club, but we held our first meeting last Friday and it was geek-tastic. Hunter made me so incredibly proud in a really geeky way and I felt very at home, which was incredibly nice since I had spent almost two weeks not feeling at home at all. The second thing is that I've decided that after the disaster of last year when I didn't do any "karaoke" singing, that Monday nights will be my "karaoke" nights. Basically that means I go to Pollard, check that no one is practising or on the first floor, and belt out a wild selection of songs. It's absolutely fantastic. Finally, the third thing is, is that I'm very quietly hiding my more outlandish personality traits from my roommate. This is quite easy though because she doesn't spend a lot of time in the room, but when she is around I try not to show off my insanity. For instance, I was checking the Kaiser Chief's website and knowing a) Kathy was in the loo and b) I would be seeing a picture of the band, I decided the best thing would be to check the site quickly and cover the picture. If Kathy had not been in the loo I would have had to endure Nick with a moustache and the presence of R. There are other things, but that was a more recent example and a very good one at that.
Finally, finally, radio should be starting up by the end of the month. "Returners" (me and my ilk) and newbies alike have to do radio training (bleh) and then there's even more cleaning up to do (hurrah!) and thems what be in charge have to make up a schedule so I'm guessing my first show won't be for another two or three weeks. Still I'm excited to get back in the studio. Hopefully being in my element will make me feel better. I'm getting the feeling I'll be needing that time on the radio.