Wednesday, June 30, 2010

round it up

A few songs from some old favorites making the rounds lately:
(aka, my google reader starred items so far this week)

Of Montreal - "Coquet Coquette"
via Pretty Much Amazing
** enjoyable and catchy, though still lacking some of the real quirky weirdness that made me love them originally.  I do like it more than Skeletal Lamping though.

Frightened Rabbit covers The Lemonheads "Confetti"

via Stereogum (via AV Club)

Chromeo - "Don't Turn the Lights On"
via Pasta Primavera
** consistently smooth and ultra cool dance music - just the right amount of funk.  It feels so right for a summer night.

The Thermals - "I Don't Believe You"
via We All Want Someone to Shout For
** oh, just another reason I have a crush on Portland, and another fun/awesome/catchy song for this summer

Tokyo Police Club - "Wait Up (Boots of Danger) (DOM Remix)"
via Brooklyn Vegan
** I was at  the Suckers/TPC/Passion Pit concert in Prospect Park last night, and it was so great (more on that to come).  This is a solid remix, but the band was solidly on.  Good stuff.  Still though, it's hard to beat the original which is just so fun.

Monday, June 28, 2010

Your Biggest Fan

Saturday night was the last time that Voxtrot will ever grace the stage as a unified band.  I'm really glad that I went to the show - they were spot on, and you could feel that everyone in the audience was having a collective moment.  They were one of the first buzz-bands I ever latched onto in my early blog-reading days, and I saw them on a hot summer day in '06 (the first summer I ever lived in NY!)  Their set included some of their best EP staples, and some songs off of their actual album.  There were dedications to individual friends and family members, fans who were with them from the start, and anyone who has ever loved Voxtrot.  I'm sad that they're breaking up, but glad to have been there for their final moments - and to have snagged such a close-up spot.

Their opening bands were alright, but clearly not even the point of being at the show.  We missed The Black, and enjoyed YellowFever (also from Austin, and featuring the female voice of any Voxtrot song with a girl in it).  Ravens and Chimes was another story, as none of us could get over the fact that for some unknown reason they sing with English accents and were clearly American.  We definitely made some enemies in our vicinity with our side comments...but really?

Here are some photos I shot, and a few of the videos I managed to take before my camera died mid-encore:

Yellow Fever

Saturday, June 26, 2010

wrapped up in books

"notebook" tank, Available here

If you're unfamiliar with Textbook, it's a great tumblr with a regular feature re-outfitting fiction/historical characters in modern high fashion.  I loved these posts, and more recently a pair of Harry Potter series characters (Bellatrix and Fleur).  

Speaking of books, I'm still moseying along through Consider the Lobster while I ride the train every day.  All of Wallace's observations and anecdotes are both highly amusing and nicely insightful.  Even if I feel like a bit of a nerd reading essays on topics like proper usage of American English, or really just reading things with extensive footnotes while on a lurching subway ride, there are a million little asides that I want to highlight except then I really would be a huge nerd.  Especially the article from Rolling Stone in which he followed the McCain campaign back in 2000.  That's right - when he didn't  even win the party nomination, in the no one had heard of Sarah Palin yet world (oh how I miss that world).  The essay was pretty long, and it was like stepping into a timewarp where McCain was the "cool" candidate that related well to young voters, and Mark Sanford was still a well-respected politician you'd want backing you up in S. Carolina.  Crazy talk! 

...I think my next summer read might have to be a little more light and fluffy.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

(Jenny +) Johnny be good

It's remarkable how versatile Jenny Lewis can be.  Her solo project is already quite different than Rilo Kiley, and her newest side project Jenny and Johnny almost makes her sound like a completely different person.  I'm enjoying the free download that they're floating around ("Scissor Runner") - it's a peppy summer number  full of jingle-jangle.  On some level, I wish I heard a little more of the raw, soulful twang that I love about Jenny Lewis's voice (see: Moneymaker, Breakin' Up, etc).  That being said, I like this collaboration and the fact that the sound is so different (because really what's the point in having a side project that sounds exactly like your other band???)  And maybe she sounds happy rather than soul-crushed because she's singing with her boyfriend - just a thought.

If you, too, have a huge girl crush on Jenny Lewis and haven't heard the song yet, I highly suggest you go download it:

Monday, June 21, 2010

Saturday was good to me (part 2)

I was so excited to hear that the Freelance Whales and morning benders were going to be playing a free show at Governor's Island, and then had a small freakout moment of disappointment when I realized that it fell on the same Saturday as the Mermaid Parade.  but! the stars aligned, and I was able to do both, quite easily in fact.  Liz, Tim and I left Coney Island together and made the trek from the F over to Pier 6 in Brooklyn to catch the special concert ferry.  If that place was at capacity, then I will really enjoy going to this concert series because it was a very comfortable number of people.  There was space to sit in the sand, picnic tables/benches to eat dinner, and then a non-sandy part in front of the stage (thank god, I really don't like sand...).  The space itself is run by the Water Taxi Beach, so they offer the same food, and have the same neon palm tree decor.

The vibe was really friendly and laid back (whereas I find the Waterfront/formerlyMcCarrenPool shows to be sort of stressful).  While we were in line for food, Chris Chu and Julian Harmon of the morning benders kept passing by (I believe they had just bought some kielbasa).  I was not a super-creep and did not go running after them, because hey - they've gotta eat and chill out a little before their set!

We pretty much missed Wild Nothing, the opening band, because we were in line for food/eating that whole time.  We got some pretty good spots just before Freelance Whales came out (read: behind some short people).  I realized that this was my third(and a half) time seeing them, and there was a definite difference.  They're clearly more comfortable up on stage, but I could also sense a bit of fatigue as this was the end of a pretty long tour.  Regardless, they were just as entertaining as the other times that I've seen them.  Morning benders were also great, and it really has not been very long since Ana and I saw them at MHoW.  This time they threw in a few covers (Fleetwood Mac and Joy Division), which actually suited them quite well.  We cut out a little early to get in line for the ferry, so we were off to the side during their final songs.  I was pretty sad to miss them up close, but it was a much more practical decision for us.

southernmost portion of Brooklyn Bridge Park, near Pier 6 - so nice!
Freelance Whales

morning benders
morning benders

a very blurry view of Brooklyn (both bridges, and the red light is the Watchtower sign)
on the ferry, leaving the show...I still don't know what this structure is

On a side note, this was the first time I went to Governor's Island, and it was beautiful.  I definitely want to go back on a day when I'm not speed walking to or from a ferry, and really see what they have going on there.

(I totally thought that I posted this already, but I found it in my drafts folder. Oops.)

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Saturday was good to me (part 1)

Saturday afternoon was spent at Coney Island, for my second year in a row of attending the Mermaid Parade with my friends from school.  I went the low-key "mermaid-look" route this time around, donning aqua and green and leaving the wigs and costumes to my other friends.  There was all sorts of good old fashioned Coney Island craziness and outlandish characters walking the streets, and some really unfortunate body parts were shown off (not pictured below).

side note: I have still never ridden the Cyclone!
one of many anti-BP/oil spill-themed demonstrations in the parade.
A lagoon monster made of MetroCards
FSAD '08ers

Thursday, June 17, 2010

tee hee hee

image via The Pursuit Aesthetic

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

with the sun shining down over me and you

This mid-week musical moment is really 10 moments: a mini-mix of songs I've been listening to to kick off the summer.

10 for early summer '10:

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

USA or England?

...and if you think I'm talking about the World Cup, you are barking up the wrong tree.

what I'm *really* interested in are the two dueling Arcade Fire singles: one that was for the UK ("We Used to Wait") and one for the US ("Ready to Start").  I actually like them both a lot and just listened to them back-to-back three times trying to choose a favorite, but so far it's a tie.  You can decide for yourself with these embeds I swiped from We All Want Someone to Shout For:

"We Used to Wait":

"Ready to Start":

In the meantime, I'm just hoping that Arcade Fire schedules a NYC show that is not the MSG one with Spoon which is $60 after all those annoying fees and the only seats left are all the way at the top and on the opposite side of the arena.  It really says something appalling about the price (and choice of venue...) that there are even tickets left to this show after it went on sale Saturday (and pre-sale a few days before that).  Let's go for something less ambitious and more reasonably-priced, guys!

Monday, June 14, 2010

summer staples

Summer has more or less arrived, complete with jam-packed (yet kind of lazy) weekends, frozen drinks, an assortment of hotdogs, and rooftop parties.

wildflowers on the Highline

Pretzel dog at the Rusty Knot

Rusty Knot signature drink, complete w/ lounging mermaid
"Ito" hotdog from Asia Dog

w/ the birthday girl on her East Village rooftop (stolen from Facebook)

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

not harvey

The problem with this glass is that 90% of its awesomeness lies is the name that they gave it online and has nothing to do with it actually being a useful object.

And of course, it's being sold by UO.

Monday, June 7, 2010

we end up together

This weekend I ate:
Grimaldi's pizza, thai food, dimsum at the Golden Unicorn

Listened to:

Finished reading:
Paris Trout (Contemporary American Fiction)Paris Trout
and then bought:
Consider the Lobster and Other Essays

And hung out with these fantastic folks:

I would say it was a Cornell overload, but there's no such thing :-)  Great visit/luncheon/party/brunch, Al!  I (and NY) miss you.

PS - here is the cutest, random yellow duckling:

spotted at Rockefeller University, at John's farewell BBQ

Thursday, June 3, 2010

I haven't forgotten about Memorial Day

I am so behind in re-capping the deliciously wonderful Memorial Day that I had on Monday!  It was also my last day before the big, bad world of working every day at 9am(!) - I guess I'm a grown-up now or something.

I hosted a small brunch party - I made corn-blueberry pancakes, biscuits, and spinach-egg-halloumi-stuffed baked tomatoes.  People brought over bagels, fruit, champagne, and daisies!  I bought my produce at the Union Square Greenmarket on Saturday, which was the first time I had gone there w/ the intention of actual grocery shopping.  All of the things I got were insanely delicious and fresh, and not expensive at all.

Post-brunch was spent in the park under the Manhattan bridge, first eating ice cream from Jacques Torres w/ Luiz and Nick, and then I was joined by my lucky friend/(now)former co-worker who lives rightthere on Main St.

It was beautiful out for 90% of the day, but I made it home right before the rain started to pour out of the sky - lucky me. :-)