Thursday, December 02, 2004

Can; Sufjan Redux; Mark Sandman bonus link; Spongebob thieves

"Oh Yeah" - Can
"Pinch" - Can
-- All MP3s courtesy Progressive Rock Archive - give them your snaps...

Act 1:
This really cool picture of Can from the Washingtron Post's website got me in a prog rock state of mind.

Here's the gist of the article that accompanies it:
Can's music has made it to CD before, but until now was never properly cleaned up for the digital age. Even so, purists may quibble about the efficacy of remastering Can's discography. Much of the group's music was recorded live to two-track -- pretty basic not just by modern standards but at the time as well. Such limited source material doesn't provide today's clarity-minded engineers much to work with. Yet few will complain about the sound quality of the first four Can records, re-released as the first slate of the latest Can catalogue rollout.

Act 2:

As long as we're ripping off the Washington Post, here's their recent review of the Sufjan Stevens show (which I reviewed a couple posts back)... she didn't like Bizarro Hung either:
Sufjan Stevens At the Black Cat

On the night before Thanksgiving, Sufjan Stevens wrapped himself quite literally in the flag. Wearing stars-and-stripes bandanas and other red-white-and-blue clothing, the members of his band, who called themselves the Michigan Militia, took to the Black Cat's stage to sing a jaunty song about "our 50 states."

Post-election reunification or postmodern hipper-than-thou-ness? The best way to enjoy Stevens was to step off to the side of such quandaries and revel in the exquisite tension of his sonic contradictions.

Stevens, who is said to be writing an album about every state of the union (he's already completed the mammoth Greetings From Michigan, the Great Lakes State), asked the crowd to imagine itself on a tour bus, then commenced an exhilarating trip through his own oeuvre. Blending unabashedly rock drums and melancholy, sometimes jazzy trumpet with softly chanting vocals, engagingly retro Wurlitzer keys and the varied voices of banjo and acoustic and electric guitars, Stevens created an arresting landscape. A high point was "Sister"; Stevens, with band mate Shara Worden of the opening act Awry, coached the audience in singing the hook melody from the album track on Seven Swans. Clearly the enraptured crowd knew it already. As the massed voices shimmered in the smoke-choked air, Stevens's Gibson soared above it all with the holy fire of pure electric guitar.

The people of the Black Cat were joined as one during the set -- unlike that of Swedish singer Nicolai Dunger, who performed between Awry and Stevens. Dunger, who combines the chipper good looks of '70s icon John Davidson with the voice of Van Morrison -- as impersonated by Davidson -- tried to lead a similar singalong but failed miserably. "You're the worst crowd I've ever had!" he said, rather amiably, to which a voice rang out: "You're the worst opening act we've ever had!" Then several onlookers joined in a fervid chorus: "Bo-ring. Bo-ring."
-- Pamela Murray Winters
Winters, the author of an unpublished biography on Sandy Denny also has an article in yesterday's post on Mark Sandman -- Morphine fans go here.

Intermission! Update-update-update: Yet another take on the Stevens Black Cat show...

Stevens was quite candid and talked a lot between songs. He volunteered little anecdotes and explanations of songs. For example, of the song "He Woke Me Up Again," he said, "This song's about being woken up in my bed late at night by my dad. See, my parents were night owls, and they'd stay awake all night discussing things. Like one time, my parents were talking, and at about three in the morning, they came up and woke all us kids up and said, 'We've come to a conclusion. We're not going to celebrate Christmas anymore. It's a social construct.' So that year we didn't do anything for Christmas." It's those sort of little gems, little personal nuggets, that I long for from a show.

Act 3:

There's also a new trend among those rascally teenagers -- apparently there has been a sponataneous outbreak of people stealing Spongebob Squarepants from the roof of participating Burger Kings. Participating in what I don't know but it has to do with a movie or something. Here's our local Spongebob kidnapee:

The kids who did this caper were quoted as saying:
"We flipped him down on his back so no one could see him deflating," Simon said, adding that he and Mercure cut the ropes that held down the inflatable. He said the whole process took about an hour. "I was sitting there smoking a cigarette most of the time," he said. "When we got down, we were like, 'Yeah!'
Um, Yeah... (congrats - for sticking with this posting, you just found the bonus MP3! Great tune for coming up in random play) Mp3 courtesy OddTodd.

Go forward and comment!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

While two of those guys in the picture look pretty fuck 1972, Suzuki is timelessy fashioned. Love the casual smirk he's giving like he rules the world (he does). Thanks!!