now it's dark.....

ok, i was feeling very industrious tonight and i put all the cd's that i could fit into the racks. they're all jumbled, no order at all, i really wanted to see what would fit and make a guess on how many more racks i would need to get. behold! note the piles on the right side. i think i need at least two more racks, but i'll probably get three just to be safe.

i'm not sure what made me think of it, but i had julee cruise's "into the night" stuck in my head today. i really can't remember the last time i listened to that song. it was released in 89, so i'm guessing it's been around ten years since i last heard it. christ, the album, "floating into the night", is nearly twenty years old. in any case, that track and a few others were on the twin peaks soundtrack, if you remember that television show.

the song, "into the night", is eerie and haunting. her voice is like a siren singing, beckoning you to your doom. or something. there's this little bit at the beginning of the song where somebody whispers, "now it's dark". i remember that as one of frank's lines in the movie, "blue velvet". david lynch ties it all together. he directed "blue velvet" and "twin peaks", and he wrote the lyrics for julee cruise's debut album, "floating into the night". angelo badalamenti wrote the music for the album, as well as scoring previous lynch films (i'm not sure how many).

there's also this strange video that was done by lynch and badalamenti, called "industrial symphony no. 1: the dream of the broken hearted". it takes places in an empty theater. i can't really describe it, it's so fucking weird. julee cruise is in it, singing a few songs. she sings "rockin back inside my heart" while in the trunk of a car. there's a lot of surreal and fantastic imagery in it. there's one sequence with an eight foot tall deer that looks like it's been skinned alive, walking around on it's hind legs. another vignette has these beat up baby dolls, falling from the sky with parachutes while an air raid siren screams their arrival. seriously, it's some weird shit. if you like lynch, you'll like this.

julee cruise > into the night


random bullshit

look! look! look! i've made sigificant progress tonight, i've finally put up my cd racks. witness this:

soon, these will be full (and this is zoomed in a bit).

so i've been asked to write a music article/review for a fanzine. i've put something together, but i'm not really happy with it. i think the main thing is that i have no confidence in my writing skillz. anyways, we'll see how it goes. i should probably just try to have fun with it, hopefully that will override my nervousness. and just to prove i'm having fun with it, i'll probably post it here when i'm absolutely done with it and you may mock me all you like.

for the second week in a row, i've gone to another show with ben and annie. this time it was opening night of the noise pop fest, featuring the flaming lips. i'm not a huge fan, but i like most of what i've heard of them. ben and i went to see them a few years ago, that was my first time seeing them. their show is a fucking spectacle. balloons, confetti, and bloody faces. what more could one ask for? how about a cover of bohemian rhapsody, complete with audience singalong? one of the encores was war pigs, and they had footage of bush and rumsfeld to compliment it.

i'm still waiting to hear back regarding my job interview. it's been two weeks and i've pretty much resigned myself to defeat. hotjobs.com, here i come....again.

ms. berry
has taken some really cool pix of some old west facades in her hood. did i say these were really cool? check out her flickr page and see for yourself. this one is my favorite.

i've been digging this band called band of horses. from what i know, a couple of the guys used to be in carissa's wierd. i have only one of the cw albums, "songs about leaving", but i really like it. actually, i just picked up "i before e" last week, at the same time i got the BoH album. carissa's wierd is kinda indie chamber pop, with piano, violins, boy voice, girl voice and sad, fucked up lyrics all wrapping themselves around each other. very pretty stuff. band of horses sorta remind me of old skool r.e.m. when they were on IRS; jangly, understated, and eloquent. the horses' album is called "everything all the time", check it out.

some tunes:
band of horses > the funeral
carissa's wierd > die


barnyard rock n' roll

i went with ben and annie to see belle & sebastian and the new pornographers. first of all, the venue was fucking weird. it was like a barn or something. yeah, a barn in san francisco. and it's like four times as big as the fillmore. not exactly intimate. it's called The Concourse at the SF Design Center. i've driven past it countless times, not knowing what was inside. this time, it was a gig inside. it was like a cavern in there, but the acoustics weren't too bad.

the new pornographers played a cool set, but the mix wasn't very good. the sound was kinda muddy. the girl who's filling in for neko case (carl newman's niece, i forget her name) is actually good, if you can get over the fact that she's not neko. but yeah, i think they would have sounded better at a smaller venue, like when they played bimbo's last fall. that fucking rocked. and neko was there, too.

belle & sebastian were great. i've kinda gone off them lately, but i always enjoy their live show. actually, i enjoy their new album (the life pursuit) much more than the previous one (dear catastrophe waitress). they played "simple things", which i don't think i've heard live before. "electronic renaissance" was really cool, too.

check it:
the new pornographers > sing me spanish techno
belle and sebastian > the blues are still blue

i don't care if you like "mass romantic" better, the pornos song is like the best pop song ever. it's got the catchy chorus and the crunchy guitars. it's like a living thing, it really moves. the b&s track has this cool 70s vibe to it that i really like. maybe i can start enjoying them again.

crappy ass customer service

it's bitch time, check it. tonight, i think i had my worst ever experience as a customer. so a long time ago, i bought my first cellular phone (or mobile...whatever you want to call it) and the carrier was called Cellular One. after a couple of years, Cellular One were bought out by ATT. everything was cool. last year, i think it was, ATT was eaten up by Cingular. fine. i kept my same number and plan. blah blah. a couple months ago, i bought a new phone from Cingular. i paid my bill and paid for the phone, no biggie. today, i discovered my service had been cut off. okay, i must have forgotten to pay the most recent bill.

i get to work, log onto the Cingular site and pony up the $40 i currently owe. towards the end of the day, my service hasn't been reinstated. i'm supposed to meet up with some friends at the B&S show tonight, so i call Cingular to see what's up. turns out i still owe $67 to ATT. WTF? so i tell the guy, fine, i'll pay it, just reactivate my service so i can go meet my friends. cs rep says he has to get a manager to approve and log in to do the transaction, since they're separate accounts. fine, i'll hold. twenty minutes later, the rep gets back on the phone and asks if i'm still there. yep, i'm still here, motherfucker. he then asks me if i can call back tomorrow because they're really busy and the manager is swamped. you gotta be fucking kidding me. so i ask the guy if he can just reactivate my service so i can get in touch with my friends and i promised to call him directly tomorrow morning to take care of the payment. he says no, he needs the manager BLAH X3 but they're really busy and they can't take care of me.


it's getting late and i need to go, so i just say fine and hang up. now i wish i'd gotten the name of that jackass so i could complain. man, i'm all worked up cuz of that shit.


pictures of me

ok, i signed up for flickr...just like all the cool kids. am i cool now? d'oh, didn't think so. oh well.

elliott smith > pictures of me


let it snow?

it's been so fucking cold, it snowed here this past weekend. saturday, there was some crazy ass 30 car pile up on the 101 over by sausalito, because san franciscans don't know how to drive when there's snow and ice on the road. apparently, we have some weather front that's been coming down from alaska for the past few weeks which has made it about 15 degrees cooler than usual. so does this mean the classic san francisco summer will be subzero temps? man, that would suck. the mild climate is one of the reasons why i live here. i don't do snow and i don't do humidity. fuck that, i'll take the fog.

mark mothersbaugh > snowflake music (from rushmore)
piana > snowbird

the piana track is really cool, you can check out her site here. she has a couple albums (snowbird and ephemeral) which are both lovely. she sings in japanese (surprise surprise, right?). i prefer snowbird slightly more just because it's got more glitchy (but subtle) electronics. ephemeral is the more acoustic of the two, however, you couldn't go wrong with either (or both). purchase here, if you're interested.

as for the mark mothersbaugh track,
he has such a deft touch, i think that guy can do no wrong on his soundtracks. i like all the stuff he's done with wes anderson. i know he's done stuff on peewee's playhouse (tv) and has probably done a whole lot more that i either don't know or am unaware of.

ps: the pic is not from this weekend, but from a promotional event (featuring johnny moseley) that occured last fall. it looked like this...

songs for a setting sun

kate bush > sunset
the innocence mission > one for sorrow, two for joy
tom waits > flower's grave
iron & wine + calexico > dead man's will
m83 > lower your eyelids to die with the sun


robot hero

stef's comment made me dig around a bit, and i found the english translation to the lyrics of robot hero. the dumb thing is that it's in the liner notes of the cd. i rarely read the liner notes anymore, i don't know why. i used to read them front to back to front. either i've gotten lazy(er) or i just can't be bothered anymore. anyway, it's so easy to find things on the internet these days.

tujiko noriko - robot hero

today the city looks
like paper slips
a well-done drawing
that perplexes me
on a day like this
you sing in my place
robot hero
my darling
as your body never melts
brand myself into your mind

today the city looks like paper slips
a well-done drawing
don't know what to say
one a day like this my hero
let me hug you and squeeze
to make sure

today the city looks
like paper slips
a well-done drawing
that perplexes me
on a day like this my hero
come on and hug me
squeeze me
to make sure


buy the sky and sell the sky and lift your arms up to the sky

there was once a time when REM was my favorite band. the first time i'd ever seen them was on an old tv show called solid gold. it was basically a weekly top ten countdown. the world-famous solid gold dancers would do (godawful) interpretive dances for each of the songs, and there was comedy (anyone remember wayland flowers and madame?) and musical guests as well. i didn't really like REM that time i saw them. michael stipe had on this ghastly paisley shirt and i wasn't into it at all. they sang some song where he kept saying "i'm sorry, i'm sorry, i'm sorry, i'm sorry", which was pretty much all i could understand. that song turned out to be "south central rain", which is on the "reckoning" album. this would make 1984 to be the year of my initial contact.

3-4 years later, "document" came out. "the one i love" was all over the place, you couldn't listen to the radio without hearing it at least a few times an hour. not remembering that first experience, REM became one of my favorite bands. the memories came flooding back when i picked up "reckoning" and listened to it in my bedroom. i remember being really surprised when the chorus of "south central rain" first kicked in. man, i wish i could see that expression on my face again, it was probably amusing.

there is another particular REM memory that stands out for me. in 95, i finally had my first chance to see them live. this girl i knew, eve, was working part time at the venue where they were playing, basically working there so she could see shows. she got me in for both shows. the first night, my friend jennifer t (from high school) came along. she's the one that snapped that pic of the embarcadero freeway, which i posted recently.

so anyways, we're at the show and we're next to these three very obnoxious girls. long story short, i end up arguing with them all for about twenty minutes and getting them kicked out. it was funny, people were actually thanking me after the girls were gone.

a better memory is when REM were playing at the bridge school benefit in 97. quick aside: the bridge school is a school for children with severe speech and physical impairments. one of neil young's kids was enrolled, i believe. he puts on this benefit to raise money for the school every year, inviting many different artists to come and play. so yeah, in this case, REM were scheduled to play. this was right before "up" was released. i went with my then girlf, nicole. she kinda wanted to leave but i really wanted to see REM. so we waited thru the worst fucking set ever: phish. i dunno what it is, it seems as if i might like them, but i just don't get those guys. so REM finally come on and one of the songs they played is "at my most beautiful". it was sooooo perfect. i'm usually not the mushy boyf type, but those lyrics were so us it was ridiculous. she and i just kept looking at each other and laughing. it was amazing to be there with the girl i was mad about, listening to one of my all time favorite bands seemingly singing about us. anyways...

south central rain (live on later with jools holland 1998)
arms of love
fall on me (live athens 1992)
at my most beautiful (live on later with jools holland 1998)

love is all around
dream (all i have to do)


from tokyo to my computer

i only have a few of her albums, but i really like tujiko noriko. a few years ago, i picked up "from tokyo to naiagara" on a whim (someone somewhere recommended it). it was another one of those albums that didn't do a thing for me at first. one night, i had the mp3 player on random. "rocket hanabi" came on and pretty much blindsided me. the ending of the song is fucking amazing. it builds and builds, then suddenly kinda stops and there's this sonar bell going off. really cool. i fell in love with the album after that. i like the electronic experimentalism, the catchy melodies underneath and her lovely voice.

one of my other favorite songs on the album is robot hero. last summer, i was obsessing over this song, as you can tell by the name on this weblog. i love how the song is arranged. the lone tapping which keeps time. the offbeat keyboards. the expressiveness of her voice. i kinda wanna know what she's singing about, but i also don't wanna know. i don't want to ruin it. the end of the song feels so melancholy and sad, and it seems to go on for a long time. it's really pretty. anyways, those are my two favorite songs on "from tokyo to naiagara". check em out.

rocket hanabi
robot hero

mego (label)
tomlab (label)
stream the entire (from tokyo...) album here


i'm your jesus christ, i know, i know, i know

i recently discovered bob mould's blog. it's kinda neat reading it, he comes off like an ordinary guy. i never got into husker du that much, i prefer the sugar albums, but it's difficult not to think of him as a sort of legend or icon. i remember when copper blue came out in 92, i was mesmerized by it. the music is powerful, muscular, and even a bit distorted, yet it has super catchy melodies lurking just beneath the surface. it surprises me that they weren't more popular. liza, my then-girlf, and i went to see sugar in 93, after beaster was released. they walked onstage and tore through their set, hardly stopping to say anything except for a thank you here or there. very cool.

sugar had two proper albums (copper blue, file under easy listening), one ep (beaster), a shitload of singles with non-album tracks (woe is the sugar completist), and a b-sides disc (besides) that compiled most of those non-album tracks. also, there was a limited edition of the comp that came with a second disc which captured a live performance in 95 (in minneapolis, i believe) that is sooooo worth seeking out. how's that for a run-on sentence?

jc auto
after all the roads have led to nowhere
a good idea