Wednesday, August 27, 2014
Wednesday, August 20, 2014
Saturday, July 06, 2013
Notes on the tunes:
The Skins were the first act I saw. Three very young African-American siblings (singer, drums, bass) and two young Caucasian kids (guitars). I don't know what I expected when they took the stage, but it certainly wasn't a series of hard-rock tunes with Black Sabbath leanings. The singer has studied her Noisettes, and the lead guitarists can shred like nobody's business. Really tight band, very entertaining. I don't think anyone was better than the Skins all weekend.
Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers are amazing. I'd never seen them live and they played a 2-hour greatest hits list going deep into the '70s. Just great. And "Tweeter and the Monkey Man"? Aw, hell yeah.
The Red Hot Chili Peppers are the most boring band I've ever seen live. Every song sounds exactly the same, and the little jams between songs are so tired and ineffective. Just stop.
MGMT are polished and spot-on live, but you might as well stay home and listen to their CDs. Passion Pit and Foster the People are about in the same class of sparkly digital music as MGMT. Django Django are interesting, the Alabama Shakes are soulful and worth seeing, Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeroes were OK, and thank GOD the Lumineers cancelled because Charlie Musselwhite and Ben Harper filled in and they really rocked--their cover of "When the Levee Breaks" is the greatest cover I've ever seen live anywhere by anyone.
Monday, July 09, 2012
Monday, June 25, 2012
I read this on the Kindle Fire (and iPad3). I like the way the book was formatted to focus on one frame at a time if you choose, or the entire page. It’s interesting to read V for Vendetta as a first-timer after seeing OWS and Adbusters use the Guy Fawkes mask to such effect. Will the radical change of consciousness Chomsky believes necessary before an anarchist revolution actually occur, or are we too distracted and complacent even now? I fear we’re going to have to deplete the Earth even further before we can make positive change.
Got this for my classroom library. YAWN. The characters are boring and predictable types, the supernatural aspects of the story are tired cliches, and the art was uninteresting. Kids who hate reading might like it, which is all that matters I suppose.
Picked up a donated copy for the classroom library and read it on a whim. It was, after all, one of the books by which I can measure a good chunk of my near-decade as a bookseller. How many copies of this did I ring up? How often did I stack it at the Info Desk? Who knows? It wasn’t a bad book by any means, though at the time it was hot I had a snooty kind of attitude, something akin to “the Herd is reading this, it can’t be good.” As a descriptor of perennial truth it’s not too shabby. I wonder if the Celestine Prophecy is as good? Will I find out? Likely not.
Monday, June 18, 2012
We returned yesterday from 3 days at Four Quarters campground in Artemas, PA. We were there for something called the Wickerman Burn Festival, which is a mid-Atlantic knock-off of the Burning Man Festival. I liked camping with friends and having a little area all our own for people to visit and trade things. I enjoyed being outside and doing out-doorsy things. I liked seeing (some of the) freaky people, and meeting and talking to a few. But the music wasn't that great, the arts and crafts were sadly lacking, and I'm past the age when glow-in-the-dark bracelets or battery-powered jewelry might interest or excite me. We did get to dance a bit, and there were naked people, and the fire itself was a thrill: a huge effigy burned atop a gigantic pile of timbers, followed by a bit of hedonism. We took a long nap next to the conflagration once it had shrunk enough to get near. I watched burning embers climb a smoke ladder into the starry sky where they vanished, and wondered about early hominids doing the same and creating the underpinnings of religious and mystical thinking re: the heavens above. I would love to camp at Four Quarters again, but I'm not sure about Wickerman Burn. It wasn't a negative experience by any means, but I expected more...creativity? Paganism? Fun?