New project (#sendmespam)

They say that one of the worst things you can do is to publish your email address online. Essentially, open season will be declared on it, and it will receive a deluge of get-rich-quick schemes, cheap pharmacy offers, and of course, porn.

Well, nuts to that. I need to get some spam.

Everything that I’ve read suggests that Yahoo Mail is the worst of the major hosting services for spam, so I set up an address that I’m hoping generates some interesting automatically-generated inquiries.

Dear spam robots, please send your insane, rambly semi-sentences to
by clicking here

Thanks so much,

PS Human readers will note this is my first blog update in several months. While I can’t guarantee I’ll start posting more, I can say that I’m figuring out much more clearly where my interests are lying, and while freelance writing was fun for a bit, my passion’s always been for poetry and other things.


The Foreign Films’ “Fall Of The Summer Heart”

So, The Foreign Films (led by the supremely talented Hamilton-based Bill Majoros) have released a new ‘song cycle’ called “Fall Of The Summer Heart.”

It’s honestly the perfect parting wave to summer, forlorn, melancholic and celebratory in turn, layered pieces of tracks falling over each other, a delightfully cluttered 12-minute-and-43-second journey. So few artists can do this lush, grand-scope psychedelic pop as well as Majoros, so I find myself really looking forward to every one of his releases.

The climax of Part VI/Victoria (Miss India) is just unbelievable, but by no means will I endorse you skipping to it. Listen to the rest of it, and just get really excited for when it comes in.

When will Majoros be coming across the QEW to Toronto? Who knows… Bill? Are you listening?

The Deep Dark Woods – Jubilee Preview

Oh, man. I’ve been listening to The Deep Dark Woods’ new record Jubilee for the last few weeks, and I’m still working on something cogent to say about it. First impressions — it’s a great, haunting rush of a record that sort of washes over the audience in a way that’s left me sort of… soaked in it for the last little while.

Fantastic stuff, easily my favorite record of theirs yet.

Here’s the preview video they posted to Six Shooter Records’ youTube a few weeks ago.

Have you heard it? What do you think?

They’re playing The Great Hall in Toronto with Michael Rault–super-fun-ES-335-totin’ Michael Rault, boo yah–on November 14th, so get some tickets, and check back here for my review in a few days.

Radiolab Recommends – Dawn of Midi

A little while ago, Radiolab did a short piece on a group one of the hosts–the amazing Jad Abumrad–is a big fan of, Dawn of Midi.
This is pretty fantastic, you guys. A live, acoustic trance band is worth listening to just.. to listen to.
Once again, I can’t embed it here—WORDPRESS!—but here’s the link.

Oh—and here’s something I WAS able to embed—Dawn of Midi, live.


(Obviously, a band like this doesn’t tour much–why would they? Can you see them playing the Horseshoe?–but thanks to The Internet, we can still at least listen.)

Tom Flippin’ Waits – his best podcasts & radio appearances

Tom Waits

My man (Handout)

The last few years, I’ve got in the habit of going on a Tom Waits kick in the fall, and for a few weeks while the leaves turn and the mornings tighten and everything else sort of begins to huddle in on itself, I don’t listen to anything else. Catapulting through Closing Time and Bad As Me, you can almost trace the outline of some deep and crumbling truth in Waits’ torn-out voice.

I’d give just about anything to interview Tom Waits, but I think I’d settle for seeing him in concert at least once.
Around this time of year, though, I always get all keyed up for a tour—maybe this’ll be the year. Maybe!—and I’m always disappointed (even if I’m not surprised) when he doesn’t.

Anyway, here’s a few of Waits’ best appearances from across the web I’ve been able to dig up.

1. Of course, we need to lead off with the brilliant interview he did with noted dreamboat Jian Ghomeshi on CBC’s Q.
2. Next, Open Source Music posted this gem a little while ago where Tom goes on a show called Selvin on the City and shares some of his favorite records.
I have no idea if this was ever broadcast—the “Selvin and the City” audio callback is appropriately hilarious—but it’s recent enough to feel current (maybe 2005?) and it doesn’t seem to be censored, as one would expect if it was going to be played… well, anywhere, really.
Highlights include Waits’ cover of Daniel Johnston in part 3 and a great discussion of the Stones in part 4, culminating in the revelation that Waits and Keith Richards are BUDDIES.
Because, I mean, of course they’re buddies.

3. At last, music. NPR recorded a session for 2008’s Glitter and Doom – check it out here.

4. Lastly, NPR also did a Fresh Air interview with him in 2011. An actual quote: “IF you hold a microphone up to your barbecue, it’s the same sound.”
As much as I can find, though, every time I look for something specific on the internet I’m reminded just how mind-numbingly big it is, and I wonder about what great appearances I’ve missed. Because I’m sure there’s many.

…like this.

PS WordPress, if you don’t stop stripping out the Javascript embeds I’m trying to add to everything–you know, the actual functional pieces needed to run a music blog–I’m gonna cut and run and… code my own site. (Please, don’t take me up on that.)

Jack Kerouac & Ben Gibbard: More intersections

While I’m still thinking of it, in 2009, Death Cab for Cutie’s Ben Gibbard and Jay Farrar of Uncle Tupelo (and Son Volt) wrote and recorded an album of songs for a documentary about Jack Kerouac, using lines Kerouac wrote in his novel Big Sur.

I’ve always thought this was a cool idea, but I think some of my interest comes from not being able to trust it. Like, the songs are catchy enough, in that Death-Cab-let’s-go-sit-in-the-sun-is-my-hair-perfectly-mussed sort of way, but the more you turn it over, the more problematic it is.

Did Kerouac get a credit? Does this really feel like something he had in mind or would have put his name on? Like, I’m sure Kerouac was aware of Woody Guthrie, but jazz tends to figure much more prominently in his work, and whether or not the songs are good, they’re linked to him now, whether or not he would’ve wanted them to be.

So what does that make One Fast Move Or I’m Gone, if not some sort of bizarre tribute album, a posthumous addendum to Kerouac’s published works he had no say in? What is music taken from prose, configured into a style that wouldn’t have been available to the original writer?