INDIEchouette


I FORGOT A TITLE

I just zoned out and pictured Ali and Becca with Ed Zych moustaches.  Hahah.  Wow.

Speaking of Ali, she created a new blog.  I am going to advocate her blog for a minute.  You might like my blog because I am long-winded and really immature and I mope a lot.  You get to watch me grow up.  Go back to my first post, and you want to punch me in the face.  I like to explain things thoroughly so you completely understand whatever I’m talking about.  And I try so hard not to offend.  You will like Ali’s blog because she uses colourful pictures to illustrate her points.  She writes with an intensity that is unheard of.  Somehow, she is able to get her point across with few words.  If we both wrote about the same thing, I’m pretty sure that I would take a five-paragraph essay to convey what she can in five sentences.  The way she writes conjures up thoughts of vignettes.  They are little snippets of her life that require no backstory.  Ali’s writing is unique in this way.  The way I write is basically a very unpoetic epic poem or a journal.  I give you some backstory.  You can track my progress.  I change.

Dear Ali,
I will always find you whenever you start a new blog.  You can’t hide.
Love, Paige

When I put it this way, I wonder why you read my blog at all.  It’s probably for the free candy.  Free music.  Yeah.

Honestly, I don’t know why I’ve let the blog go for this long without some new music.  Because I’ve been listening avidly all this time, finding new lovely artists.  I’ve been tuning my iTunes to spring.

I feel that I should start slowly though.  First, I said back in February or March that I would write about She & Him, and I didn’t lie but I just haven’t done it yet.

Erika is the one who introduced me to She & Him.  She told me that she falls asleep to their album, Volume One, every night.  It is her teddy bear.  I was excited but a little skeptical.  It seemed like sacrelige to me to bed down with an album like that, to worship something other than Rilo Kiley.  And while they are no Rilo Kiley for me, while Zooey Deschanel is no Jenny Lewis and M. Ward no Conor Oberst/Blake Sennett, they put up a damn good fight.

shehimsheandhim

If you like Jenny Lewis’ solo albums and if you love 50s/60s pop music with a slight bubblegum flavour, then She & Him is for you.  I really don’t know how they manage it.  It’s a mind-blowing mixture, slightly dangerous, but for what it is, it is perfection.  I would even venture to wholeheartedly recommend She & Him to older listeners, people who grew up with that 50s or 60s bubblegum pop.  I don’t think anyone out of their mid-twenties even reads this, but next time you and your Aunt Elaine are bonding over music, pop this one in.

As for the album itself, most of the thirteen tracks check in at under three minutes.  She & Him don’t go for the epic “Tereza and Thomas”-type shit.  That means that every song is bite-sized, kind of like a Sour Patch Watermelon.

I should never write reviews for CDs again.  My analogies are cringeworthy.

You Really Got A Hold On Me | She & Him
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Did I mention that they do covers that make me want to melt?  Also, maybe you can help me.  In iTunes and on Last.fm, it’s named “You Really Gotta Hold On Me” but elsewhere, it is named “You Really Got A Hold On Me”.  Which is correct?

I Thought I Saw Your Face Today | She & Him
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Did I mention that I love sick beats?

While I’m on a roll, talking about amazing women, it is mandaroty that I mention Sarah Maple.  She is an incredibly accomplished and clever feminist painter and photographer.  I don’t want to just paraphrase the Bitch article that introduced her to me on a formal basis (because I had run into her a few times before, but the websites never cited her).  She’s just an incredible cultural commentator.

This ones my favourite.

This one's my favourite.

As for real-life occurrences, I go home in three weeks (less than a month) and I am stoked.  I will be able to sit outside and read all day while my sisters suffer at school.  And for those of you still in high school, yes, that is a pretty mean thing to say, but when you think about it, I suffered too.  I went to school for fourteen years before arriving at this position.  This is my fifteenth year, and it’s almost done.  If you’re in high school, you probably haven’t gone through that much school.

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BEFORE MARCH ENDS

I think this one is easier on the ears.

1.  Sea Legs | The Shins
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The beginning to this song, before any melody or lyrics, sort of reminds me of something Switchfoot would do, and I loved Switchfoot when I was maybe fourteen.  I have since moved on, but you could say that I am comforted by familiar things.  Everyone is.  In addition to reminding me of Switchfoot, the Shins will always remind me of some scene from Garden State, even if only two of their songs were in the movie.  “Sea Legs” is a darker Shins piece, but it’s not unpleasant.  In its boldness, it is pleasant.  It is assertive.  It is an evening piece.  The evening is my favourite time of day.  That’s why I put this on my March mix, because it’s starting to get warmer, it’s spring, and the evenings are beginning to grow more and more enjoyable.

2.  Unforgettable Season | Cut Copy
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Sometimes, when I have a clear head, blank slate, and I don’t already have a song in mind, I’ll allow my iPod to shuffle around songs that I don’t listen to very often.  That’s how I grew to like “Unforgettable Season.”  The reason I allowed myself to listen instead of switching the song is that it’s encouraging and atmospheric, like most summer songs.  It’s not summer, but it’s close enough.

3.  Can’t Stop Now | Keane
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As I said before, familiarity is comforting.  Keane is familiar.  Also, Keane and piano rock in general both give me this weird romantic-comedy feelings.  It’s probably because Keane always has this pained, broken-hearted sound that captures the feeling that someone is lonely and trying very hard to be happy in order to get over something dreadful.  I’m not going to lie (and really, why would I lie), I love that sound and I love that feeling.  Emotion keeps my heart running.

4.  Take Me Anywhere | Tegan & Sara
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I think Tegan & Sara’s short songs are the best ones because they pack the most feeling into the smallest packages.  For example, listen to “Soil, Soil.”  That’s one of my favourites.  Also, the short ones tend to be the catchier ones.

5.  Jedi | melpo mene
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I have a newfound love for Star Wars.  And I have a relatively newfound love for the style of elevator music that Melpo Mene produces.  But my love for gentle, delicate voices is not newfound.  It may be because of “I Adore You” or maybe because of the all-around sound that their albums produce, but I find that Melpo Mene is the epitome of a cloud-band.  Also, for some reason, maybe because his voice is just so delicate and his songs just so tender, Erik Mattiasson somehow reminds me of a Swedish version of Gael García Bernal’s character in The Science of Sleep, which is endearing.  It makes me want to tuck him in and make him breakfast.

6.  Pagan Angel And A Borrowed Car | Iron & Wine
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Ali pointed out to me that Sam Beam looks like Jesus.  I already somehow realized this, but having her point it out so bluntly is only a little bit of a setback, because I generally love hairy people.  I really don’t care that he has taken up the typically unattractive Christ-look because of his delicate, smooth, and intimate voice, which is revealing but still manages to retain a great amount of dignity.  I love Sam Beam’s work.

7.  Let It Fall | Lykke Li
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I uploaded this song only a few days ago, but here!  I’m giving you another chance to introduce yourself to Lykke Li!  Every time I listen to this song, I want to hopskotch, jumprope, draw with chalk, and play outdoors kids’ games.  Do not ask why.  Probably because of the sing-songness, syncopation, and “so happy-ee-ee-ee!” Maybe I’ll make a mix of new childhood nostalgia songs for the summer.

8.  Soul Meets Body | Death Cab For Cutie
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I also uploaded this song recently, but I don’t think I ever explained just why.  I went on a bike-trip for dinner to Carytown with Virginia and Bryan, neither of whom have websites that I can link to.  We ate dinner at Nacho Mama’s and then left to gather up our bikes and as we drove past Nacho Mama’s again, we heard this song emanating from the outdoor speakers.  When I hear a song that I already love playing in a public place, I will be hooked on it for a while.  This one’s for the good biking weather!

9.  Coat Check Dream Song | Bright Eyes
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Cassadaga wasn’t as awesome as Conor Oberst’s older material.  We all know that.  The warbly voice was gone, the drugs were absent.  There were, however, some winners, such as this one, which features some woman as a guest–who is it?  Is there more than one woman?  Is one of those women Maria Taylor?  I think that the woman in this song really makes it.

10.  Dance Dance Dance | Lykke Li
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I searched Lykke Li on Youtube.  I found this video.  A dancer all alone.  This song could make you feel so alone in a crowd.  The percussion.  Her lonely voice.  The lonely lyrics.  I became ecstatic and fell in love with the song.  What I love is that there is not really any buildup and it never becomes a huge fanfare, though it gradually becomes a little more lively, a little more happy until there is a chorus of women and maybe one man.  Also, it’s probably the only song in the world written and performed by a self-proclaimed shy person.  I love that.

11.  Wedding March | Erin Tobey
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I don’t like the idea of marriage, but I love the idea of a female acoustic artist.  In fact, I love the idea of acoustic artists in general.  Or acoustic artists that are purely instrumental.  Or purely instrumental artists.  Lyrics sometimes get in the way.  That doesn’t happen with Erin Tobey.  Erin Tobey’s voice is so gentle, anyway, that it just combines with the guitar and absolutely floats as it ascends to meet Melpo Mene in the clouds.  Listen to the lyrics, though.  They are how I feel.

12.  Avignon | Pinback
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This was my first taste of Pinback years ago.  So when I was asked by Ke at the beginning of last semester if I had ever heard of Pinback, yes, I had, but I didn’t know it until I checked out my Last.fm charts from forever ago.  My first taste of Pinback was via Last.fm and I was probably sixteen.  I must add here that it was a faster verion and that I officially love songs with pet names.  In this case, they’re sad pet names.  In other cases, you get pet names like Baby Girl, which is basically my cat’s name.  Babygirl.  Babyqirl.

Avignon (Full Band Version) | Pinback
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This is the faster version.

13.  Hanging High | Lykke Li
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Supposing I have children, I want them to grow up listening to this serene tune.  That’s the first thing I thought when I first heard these bittersweet sounds.  She has a delicate but distinct voice, so sweet and dignified, so bold, and so young.  She’s so young.  It all shows here.

14.  Effigy | Andrew Bird
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You can tell that Andrew Bird definitely loops the beginning, which is a magical procedure to witness live.  He has to be so precise!  Anyway, I heard this one at Cherry Alley, which was another case of falling in love with a song I know and then hear in a public place.  I recognized Andrew Bird’s distinct voice immediately and felt calm.  As far as I’ve noticed, he rarely uses guests, but when he does, they’re incredible females.  Ali put it so simply:  It’s such a beautiful song.  Even if it’s about death.  Well really, those can be the most beautiful because they’re loneliest.

15.  House By The Sea | Iron & Wine
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I feel that I need to show you a picture of Sam Beam’s Jesus-ness in order for you to understand.

Not Sam Beam.  Actually Jesus.

Not Sam Beam. Actually Jesus.

The reason I love this song so much is that it talks about two jealous sisters waiting in a house, basically just prepping, doing nothing, waiting for something terrible.  I picture an abandoned house where my sister is making angels in the dust on the wooden floors and I am walking around, loving her, trying to take care of her, trying to change the locks on the door, trying to keep her safe even though we can’t be safe anywhere and we will have to leave soon.  There is a lot of imagery, and it reminds me of myself and my sister, Rachael.  Or what we could be if we were terrible people who had to get along because we had nobody else.  Also, I love raspberries.  And I love the way Sam Beam sings about raspberry leaves.  And I love the guitar riffs.  This is currently my favourite Iron & Wine song.

16.  Underground | Sentinel
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Even if the guitar parts make little sense to me, it’s my favourite part.  I like this song because it has potential.  It succeeds in being atmospheric and a definite travelling song, which is all I really ask of it.  My favourite part is either the beginning or the last ~30 seconds.  If you like it, then I advise that you check out “Avalanche” by Sentinel.

17.  2 O’Clock | Kaki King
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Kaki King is playing a childish game with us.  Her voice is like Erin Tobey’s in that it floats up in the clouds.  I’m guessing that this song is about someone who is taking care of a very injured person who doesn’t love her. the pain is the reason I love this song.  And the sing-songness she uses when she gets to the built-up part.  I generally love Kaki King’s ability to capture any melancholy emotion, though.  In a sense, it’s a shame she doesn’t sing more, since her voice is tinged with pleasantness, but then, I’d be afraid that her voice or lyrics would get in the way of her music, which would be unfortunate.  Also,  you need to listen to Kaki King’s retaliation at the end of the track.  Don’t stop when she stops singing.  Keep going.

18.  Out On The Weekend | Neil Young
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Listening to the original really stresses just how well Conor Oberst/Bright Eyes can cover Neil Young.  Or how much Neil Young influenced Bright Eyes.  I wish I had good taste when I was younger.  Don’t fret that it’s a really quiet track, either; my dad converted all of his records into mp3 format and that’s why.  “She’s so fine/She’s in my mind/I hear her callin'”  Yeah.  Favourite part in any version.

19.  Resurrection Fern | Iron & Wine
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My attention was called to this piece because it was on a mix that someone close to Jaimie had made for her.  It shows how close.  Whenever I hear, “Like stubborn boys across the road we’ll keep everything,” I think of Charles, Coleton, Phelan, Travis, and Torey and how close we were the summer of 2007 on North 11th Street under Charles’ tree.  Every day!  Every night!  Circle Meetings!  We were a family, along with my real family, Rachael, Alexa, and Shannon.  I loved them all.  I still love them all.  I miss being lonely, underage, and terribly sad.  I think that it’s harder to be lonely and of age.  I really do.



CONOR OBERST AND THE MYSTIC VALLEY BAND, 12TH NOVEMBER 2008

Taylor Hollingsworth is a man to watch.

Onstage, he is reservedly seductive.  But damn, can he play guitar.  You just need to watch him.

Also, tonight I realized that I am not a fangirl, and I do not get starstruck.  I probably realized this after Man Man.  When I see someone “famous,” I do not scream.  When I meet someone famous, I do not scream.  In fact, I simply don’t talk.  This isn’t because I’m stricken, but it’s more because my shyness takes on again.  I guess with people who have to deal with people like me all day, I can be myself.  But a “famous” person?  I don’t particuarly care about “famous” people more than I care about anyone else, and let’s face it.  They don’t care about me.

So when Conor Oberst unbuttoned his shirt, I did not have an orgasm.  When Taylor Hollingsworth looked in my direction (though likely not at me), I did not scream or really react, except by looking back and offering a reassurring half-smile and then looking away.  I do not want to suck the dicks of famous musicians.  Know why?  I wouldn’t be the first, and I wouldn’t be the last, and I wouldn’t matter.  That’s why.

Man Man made me skeptical.

Also, Ben Kweller played “Sundress.”  I think that was the highlight of the night for me, even if he did look like a 90s motorcycle gang member or my dad (attire).  Taylor Hollingsworth made the Mystic Valley Band worth it.  Actually, all the guys in the band were great.  Jason Boesel, Macey Taylor (he was a cool, nice-seeming guy who kept smiling), Nik Freitas, and Nate Walcott (who I couldn’t really see…).  Conor Oberst was cool to watch, but I would have preferred Bright Eyes.  And fangirls who yell stupid things during silences like, “YOU’RE SO SEXY CONOR!!!!!!!!111!!!one!!!!” ruin it for everyone.  Really.