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July 23, 2009

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FTR, how old r u?

I'm not a huge 2000-2005 fan, but it did include:

Gorillaz debut album
Josh Rouse: 1972
Andrew Bird: Mysterious Production of Eggs

Spoon - Kill The Moonlight - 2003
Shins - Chutes Too Narrow - 2002
Spoon- Girls Can Tell - 2001
Gillian Welch - Time, The Revelator - 2001
White Stripes - White Blood Cells - 2001

"OK, OK, there have been a ton of geat albums since I graduated from college."

Beowulf & the Thegns - "Grendel's Mother"

i saw a club (in Chicago) today advertising a show by a Blink 182 tribute band. i was all like "huh? too soon. aren't they a relatively new band?" well, no, they started in 92, and they've since broken-up, lost members, reunited and put out a new record (ie. they've been around a long time and have already done the whole Rock And Roll thing). i'm just suffering from the not-a-kid-anymore time dilation thing, where 10 years ago seems like yesterday.

kill me now

drat

there was a dead spot in the 80s, too. in fact not much good since 1977!

Neil Howe, an author of several books on what he calls the Millennials (another term for Gen Y), draws a parallel between this nostalgic wave and the one boomers embraced with the film “American Graffiti” in 1973. That movie depicted the recent past, the early ’60s, which seemed to have vanished forever.

“It’s instant nostalgia before a huge change in the nation’s mood,” Mr. Howe said. “ ‘American Graffiti’ was nostalgia for the boomers for a world before everything changed after J.F.K.’s assassination.

“Millennials see the world before Sept. 11 as a period of innocence. Our biggest worry was the Y2K bug. That all seems a world away now.”

Just the silliest analogy ever. But if you want proof of it, go ahead and make this generation's American Graffiti. "Where were you in 1998?" Uh, basically where we are now, politically, economically and culturally. Apart from the fact that a depression is now imminent, hardly anyone's lives have changed in the slightest in that time span.

Tool - Lateralus. Released in 2001. QE--motherfrackin'--D.

There's still a lot of great music out there, but then you have kids actually listening to awful things like this:
Confide - Such Great Heights (new window)
Watch the first few minutes, it's worth it. I'm only 24 and this kind of stuff makes me wonder what the hell is wrong with these kids and their music these days. I'm all for a little screaming in some music(The Shape of Punk to Come is still one of my favorite albums), but the good cop/bad cop vocals are so overused and just a lazy way to try to make things sound interesting. And that's just the beginning of the things I can't stand about this stuff. Other horrible examples of this stuff that have become internet famous here and here.

There's been only two must-haves so far this year for me: Phoenix's Wolfgang Amadeus Phoenix and Japandroids' Post-Nothing. Everyone should probably know Phoenix by now. I was totally sure that either 1901 or Lisztomania were gonna turn into this summer's ubiquitous indie hits in the same way Modest Mouse's Float On did a few years back, but I suppose that hasn't happened. Either way, both those songs are just perfect summer music and some of my favorite stuff this year.

Japandroids are an awesome duo from Vancouver that make fun, loud, fist-pumping garage rock. Young Hearts Spark Fire and Wet Hair are my favorites, with the latter bringing back warm memories of Cap'n Jazz.

Oh, and my personal music hero, Ted Leo, has released the bulk of his best work in the 00's. So there.

dan s.--


hwaet?!?!

As if the late 90s was better. You keep your boy bands, and I'll take:

Sun Kil Moon, Ghosts of the Great Highway, 2003
Wilco, Yankee Hotel Foxtrot, 2002
Sufjan Stevens, Illinois, 2005
Sigur Ros, (), 2002
Whiskeytown, Pneumonia, 2001
Radiohead, Hail to the Thief, 2003

And that's just the first six I thought of. Plus, The Darkness (2003) ftw.

Of the bands mentioned in the post/thread, I've heard of Outkast, Tool, White Stripes and Gorillaz. I know them all fairly well (Tool very well, since 93) except for Gorillaz, but what little of Gorillaz I've heard I think I liked.

My picks:

Meshuggah - Nothing
Clutch - Pure Rock Fury
Clutch - Blast Tyrant
Clutch - Robot Hive/Exodus
Mastodon - Remission
Mastodon - Leviathan
The Beastie Boys - anything they did

I finally got around to reading the article you linked, Von, and I'm simply not going to say anything about this sentence: "(They can’t fly, but still compete with brooms between their legs.)"

I'm just not.

"Apart from the fact that a depression is now imminent, hardly anyone's lives have changed in the slightest in that time span."

That seems pretty arguable, actually. In 1998, a vastly smaller fraction of the public were on the internet than now; people didn't text on phones; mobile phones weren't endemic; Googling wasn't a regular habit of most people; cloning animals hadn't become normal; even cable tv was much less widespread than it is today (in America).

That's one aspect. Another is that we weren't debating torture in our politics, or stolen elections, and we weren't occupying major countries.

I could go on listing quite a few significant differences the last decade has made. It's not as if everything changed between 1962 and 1973, either; we hadn't even had a resigned President yet, or gotten out of Vietnam.

"Indeed, I was about to generalize that there was a dead spot between 2000 and 2005 when nothing good got made, but then I realized that I completely forgot this. "

Linkin Park--Hybrid Theory 2000 and Meteora 2003.

If you don't like them, it is because you're old.

Ok, not really. You might be too hip, but are you really? Really? ;)

"Apart from the fact that a depression is now imminent, hardly anyone's lives have changed in the slightest in that time span."

Besides, people being nostalgic for their childhood is simply the way human beings work: and once you reach your twenties, you start that process. It's just that simple. Complaining that it's silly is silly.

Just to be clear, I have heard of Wilco and, for fncks sake, Radiohead. That post showed up after I typed mine. I really wouldn't want people thinking I was so out of it as to never have heard of Radiohead. And I didn't notice Modest Mouse in an earlier comment. I've heard of them, too. I only mention this because this is the only place where I see so many bands I've never even heard of, let alone heard, at least that I know of. It's weird for me.

The Greatful Dead
The Lovin Spoonful
Van Morrison
Steppenwolf
The Kinks
The mammas and the pappas
The Byrds
Donavan
The list is long; music with a message.
My God, I'm old.
Just as an aside, I thought the wars were going to wind down. Friday I got an invitation to participate in "retiree recall program". Christ, I'm almost 60. I guess I polish my bayonette.

I have even seen Modest Mouse when they were playing at the Showbox in Seattle in 1999.

It was loud.

Wait a minute, Sebastian did you just list Linkin Park as one of the good musical artists to come of the '00's?

There has been no great music produced since 1945.

I'm with Dave C. Linkin Park - bletch! And, Old Soldier, The Kinks RULE. Old, schmold.

Stumbled across Major Lance's "Monkey Time" today on my ipod.

I could listen to that song about 100 times in a row and still have a smile on my face that would light up Broadway.

It's all good.

BTW, since this is an open thread, has anyone ever found an actual, useful, real world value for caps lock?

The only thing it does for me is foobar my logins.

Neko Case did lots of good work between 2000 and 2005.

russell,

CAPS LOCK is useful when filling in forms that AUTOMATICALLY CAPITALIZE what you type. You don't get that dizzy feeling which you feel when THE WORDS AUTOMATICALLY CAPITALIZE THEMSELVES, NO MATTER WHAT YOU TRY TO DO. WHICH IS unfortunate For THOSe who LEarnEd to typE manUALly LIke I did, aS iTS veRY hard to break YOUR CAPITALIZATION tYPing HabitS WITHout throwinG OFF YOur eQUILibrium.

Damn, now I'm going to have to lie down for a while.

Did anyone else notice that comments crashed just as hilzoy made her comment?

Just...weird.

"BTW, since this is an open thread, has anyone ever found an actual, useful, real world value for caps lock?"

Yes. When preparing a manuscript for publication, there are, or at least were in pre-personal-computer days, elements that were all capped; chapter titles, in some cases; shouting; other stylistic mannerisms the author intends to convey at times; that sort of thing.

If you're on a computer, or other computerized instrument, rather than something as old fashioned as a typewriter, not so much.

CapsLock is very useful after you remap it to a key that is actually useful, like Control.

"CapsLock is very useful after you remap it to a key that is actually useful, like Control."

That's cool if you are interested in and comfortable with remapping your keyboard. Which, no doubt, lots of folks are.

But it strikes as being something like asking folks to reprogram their emergency brake to turn the radio on.

It's weird, I write software for a living, but I have little patience for features that require hacks to be useful.

None of this is intended as a derogatory comment on your suggestion, Turb. It's more a comment on hardware and software design for normal users.

If you're on a computer, or other computerized instrument, rather than something as old fashioned as a typewriter, not so much.

Why? What's the difference if it's a computer or typewriter? Wouldn't you still have to keep a pinky on the shift key? I use caps lock all the time at work writing specs. I think it would suck not to have caps lock on my (computer) keyboard.

Well, on non-crappy operating systems, it isn't a hack at all. OS X and Ubuntu allow you to do it in 5 seconds. In OS X, just go to System Preferences, Keyboard, Modifier Keys, and select "Control" for Caps Lock. Ubuntu has an option in its keyboard control panel for Cap Lock as extra control key.

Wouldn't you still have to keep a pinky on the shift key?

Most editors allow you to capitalize a block of text easily with either a keyboard shortcut or a menu item. Most people don't use all capital letters nearly enough to justify sacrificing precious keyboard real estate.

I'm, so I fit snugly into the "millenial" window. 9/11 happened when I was 16. Much as I detest using 9/11 as the everpresent cultural touchtone, it did coincide with a generation's coming of age. The adult world around us defined time in termps of pre- and post-9/11, so we did as well. Pre-9/11 we were little kids. No responsibilities besides homework.

Post-9/11 was when the first real stress in our bubble-wrapped suburban lives began to insinuate itself: SATs, college applications, our first relationships...the same things that everyone goes through, but we associated that stress with global stress (hey, look, we're at war and the world hates America), and yearned for the 90s, when everything was easy.

So yeah, perhaps we're getting nostalgic a bit early. But for our entire adolescent and adult lives, we've been told that before 9/11 (our childhood) was this halcyon time of peace and prosperity, the likes of which we might never know again. Plus Clarissa Explains it All, Are You Afraid of the Dark?, and Full House were still on TV. Clearly, it was a good time.

Hey Gary, would you mind reading this plot synopsis of James Cameron's movie "Avatar" and tell me what SF story he's ripping off?

In the story I remember, there were no indigenous sentients, only the genetically engineered ones put there by humans. Still, a lot of it seems awfully familiar. Sadly, teh Google is of no help here.

FTR, how old r u?

Old enough to say that, in my day, we used vowels with our consonants and consonants with our vowels. (1974; Thirty five.)

Did you make the Pitchfork music festival, Cleek? If so, what did you think? (Chicago readers of a certain disposition and age might also be advised that Naked Raygun is getting back together & will play the Metro in October.)

You know, I'm reading all of this, and man...

I really don't like all that much of post '97 music. There was that Santana thing, but I mostly look forward to new releases by foreign artists like Rokia Traore, Susheela Raman, Mamadou Diabate, Cheikh N'digel Lo, Jorane, Manau, Sainkho Namschylak, and their like who started (or started getting good) around 1999-2000.


There is really not all that much western music that I liked 9-10 years ago. New artists like Snakefarm, Gorillaz, Groove Armada, and Si Se, of course. But I mostly listened to good albums by Tracy Chapman, PJ Harvey, Tori Amos, Rage Against the Machine, Radiohead, and their like.

That era was just not very good for popular music. More musically music genres had better stuff going. I mean, check out Cassandra Wilson's Traveling Miles. That friggin' album crushes most of the other music made that year.

Linkin Park absolutely one of the good bands. You're old. ;)

Radiohead - Hail To The Thief

There has been no great music produced since 1945.

Not even this?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cantus_In_Memoriam_Benjamin_Britten

How is this legal?

Seriously, Von, you're forfeiting your research creds if you assume you've even heard of most of the music you'd like best from 2000-2005. There's tens of thousands of records released every year. Knowing only that you loved Neon Golden and Outkast, liked Elephant, and are a crabby intellectual -- in other words, I won't be listing the folk-pop of Dar Williams, the punk cabaret of the Dresden Dolls, or the progressive-metal of Megallan, though I love them myself -- I'd guess you ought to check out such great albums as

2000:
Loud Family, Attractive Nuisance
Tris McCall, If One of These Bottles Should Happen to Fall
Self, Gizmodgery
Swinghammer, Vostok 6

2001:
Count Zero, Robots Anonymous
Atom and His Package, Redefining Music

2002:
Gomez, In Our Gun
Boom Bip and Doseone, Circle
Baby Dayliner, High Heart and Low Estate

2003:
David Garland, On the Other Side of the Window
Martin Tielli, Operation Infinite Joy

2004:
Amy X Neuburg, Residue (the best album of the past decade in my opinion)
John Vanderslice, Cellar Door
Now It's Overhead, Fall Back Open

2005:
Ford Pier, Pier-ic Victory
New Model Army, Carnival
Imogen Heap, Speak for Yourself

There. Seventeen albums. Speaking as someone with a lot of experience recommending music, I bet you'd love eight of them, like three, have no use at all for six, something like that -- the point being hey, there's eight albums you've probably never heard of that you'd love, just from me typing off the top of my head. And I haven't heard most of the world's records either.

"Well, on non-crappy operating systems, it isn't a hack at all."

Ah, there's the rub.

For the record, of the albums already discussed, I do love Illinois, Hail to the Thief, and Yankee Hotel Foxtrot. I'm just assuming nobody of alternative-leaning tastes would dismiss their entire era of music without having checked them out already.

If you, Von, do not like those records, I'd lower my predicted hit rate of recommendations to maybe four albums you'd love. Which would still be four you didn't know before, from just one random guy's collection,

Probably not a lot of minimal techno fans on this board, but if there's one must have CD of this genre, it's:
Tyrant - Fabric 15, 2004

Absotively brilliant

As for other more conventional genres from 2000-2005. A quick search, and I get these killer albums:
Flaming Lips - Yoshimi Battles the Pink Robots
Radiohead - Kid A
Radiohead - Amnesiac
Radiohead - Hail to the Thief (you get the idea. Get some Radiohead! These three albums are ranked in order from favorite to least favorite, but they're all amazing.)
Arcade Fire - Funeral
Eminem - Marhsal Mathers EP (typical hip hop albums with weaknesses, but some amazing tracks)
The Streets - Original Pirate Material (hilarious UK hip hop)
Sonic Youth - Murray Street (even if you don't typically like Sonic Youth, I expect you'll love this album)
Tenacious D (yes, it's a comedy album, but the music is actually good, and it is uproariously funny. Seriously. Go buy this thing.)

Definitely a minimal techno fan. Just listened to some of Fabric 15 on youtube--good stuff.

Did you make the Pitchfork music festival, Cleek?

ah no... i wish. just up here for a wedding (and a couple of days of sightseeing).

So, I'm not going to be commenting much for a while, due to the fire in our house last night/this morning.

http://amygdalagf.blogspot.com/2009/07/ive-lost-track-of-number-of-times-ive.html

It makes me a bit crotchety. But grateful it wasn't far far worse, as it could have been.

"What's the difference if it's a computer or typewriter?"

I meant that for the publishing purposes I previously referred to, those are now largely accomplished by changing fonts, or another kind of mark-up; that's all.


For Windows users, the easiest way I know to remap the never-to-be-sufficiently-damned capslock key to Control is to install ctrl2cap

If you, Von, do not like those records, I'd lower my predicted hit rate of recommendations to maybe four albums you'd love. Which would still be four you didn't know before, from just one random guy's collection,

Liked Yankee Hotel Foxtrot, but didn't put it into heavy rotation. Appreciate, but don't love, Hail to the Thief. Wore out listening to Arcade Fire's Funeral in one summer, but really haven't been back. (I completely forgot that Arcade Fire released Funeral between 2000-2005). Same deal, less intensity, with the Shins and Interpol. I second the nod to Eminem's Marhsal Mathers EP, including caveats.

But here's the problem, Voxpoptart: I don't have a defined style, I can't listen to music all day, and I sometimes need to have time to return to my favorites. Three weeks ago, I was re-obsessed with Pink Floyd. Final Cut! Meddle! Atom Heart Mother! This week, I've been listening almost exclusively to Slug's latest (i.e., Atmosphere's "When Life Gives You Lemons ....") There was one week last year in which I listened only to the Misfits (there are times when you can't have enough Danzig in your life). Some days all I want to hear is Mice Parade, Tortoise, or G!YBE. Others I need some Screeching Weasel, Jawbreaker, Death Cab, Fugazi, Terrordactyls, Vampire Weekend, Lil' Wayne, Foreign Exchange, and/or Public Enemy. And, though rare, I sometimes require doses of Willy Nelson or the Violent Femmes, and a million-and-one other things.

What am I saying? I guess: I don't have time to listen to 17 new records. And I'm not interested in lists that you've generated based on what you think I'd like to hear.

More interesting: Tell me what your favorite album is from that era. Is it Amy X's album? I think I've heard some of her stuff & didn't hate it completely. Or is there something that's not on your list that you love but, for some reason, didn't think I'd like?

In other words, don't try to predict my favorites; tell me yours

Oh, my God. I completely forgot that Flaming Lips released Yoshimi in 2002. It seemed like it must have been after '05.

That's the problem with getting old: time goes by without you even realizing it any more.

I may be in the minority, but I think the oughts have generally been a lot better than the ridiculously faux-angst-ridden 90's...

Flame on!

Sebastian:

I'm with you on Hybrid Theory, but not on Meteora. That one was "eh."

I will say, however, that I thought Evanescence's Fallen (2003) was a terrific album.

Otherwise, I need to look through my CD library for the 2000-2005 music and find the "greatest hits."

hey, fwiw here are some fav's from the aughts:

Kurt Rosenwinkel "Deep Song"
DJ Dolores "1 Real"
Elbow "Seldom Seen Kid" (via cleek!)
Bill Frissell "Blues Dream"
Toni Kitanovsky "Borderlands" (ai yi yi!)
Revolutionary Snake Ensemble "Year of the Snake"
Oumou Sangare "Oumou"

I feel an itunes binge coming on.....

"That's the problem with getting old: time goes by without you even realizing it any more."

Not to quibble, but I think that's the problem with getting middle aged.

I'm beginning to suspect that the problem with getting old is that time goes by and you feel every minute of it.

You could be right, Russell.

Good albums from 2000-2006:

Hayseed Dixie: A Hot Piece of Grass (2005) Half parody, half legitimately good bluegrass
King's X: Ogre Tones (2005)
Richard Cheese: Aperitif for Destruction (2005) Tomorrow's standards today!
Ingram Hill: June's Picture Show (2004)
Madeleine Peyroux: Careless Love (2004)
Norah Jones: Feels Like Home (2004)
John Boutte' & Uptown Okra: Carry Me Home (2003)
Fruteland Jackson: Blues 2.0 (2003)
Jesse Cook: Nomad (2003)
Jet: Get Born (2003)
Joss Stone: The Soul Sessions (2003)
Hayseed Dixie: A Hillbilly Tribute to Modern Love (2002) Hilarious
Norah Jones: Come Away With Me (2002)
Cake: Comfort Eagle (2001)
Incubus: Morning View (2001)
King's X: Manic Moonlight (2001)
No Doubt: Rock Steady (2001)
Disturbed: The Sickness (2000)
Galactic Cowboys: Let It Go (2000)
Jesse Cook: Free Fall (2000)
Linkin Park: Hybrid Theory (2000)
Mike Wade: Reality (2000) -- If you like Jazz and Hip Hop, you MUST get this; I don't much like Hip Hop, but this CD is STILL good.
Richard Cheese: Lounge Against the Machine (2000)
Sister Hazel: Fortress (2000)

And that's just what's in my library. I'm sure there's a lot more good stuff that I _didn't_ buy.

By the way, it should be abundantly clear at this point that I have weird taste in music, and that genre-wise I'm all over the map.

Funny you should mention 1992. I was pulling up to what was then the federal courthouse in White Plains, when the radio DJ (back when WNEW 102.7 FM was listenable) mentioned that that day was the 25th anniversary of the release of Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band. Doing some quick mental math, I tried to figure out what was 25 years old when Sgt. Pepper came out: Glenn Miller, Benny Goodman, Duke Ellington. If that wasn't the Day the Music Died, it was the day I realized I'd never be cool again. Looking at the lists of albums here, I own 3 or 4 of them, and I recognize perhaps a half-dozen other band names, though I couldn't recognize a song if my life depended on it.
Thanks a lot.

Fallen was an excellent album but I realize that it is a not-well liked sub-genre so I wasn't going to push it. I actually think I like every song on the album. (Goes over song list). I think the song I like the least on the album I was still take over about 80% of the stuff I hear on the radio. Though Amy Lee is apparently not a fun person to work with even by music industry standards. When you go through 5 band members in 5 years despite being popular, you're the problem...

Goth-metal isn't everyone's taste. But if it is, you should really know about "Dead Can Dance". Not because they are goth-metal. But because they are amazing and for reasons I can't totally articulate everyone who likes goth-metal also likes them. (Is it the complex but slow rythmns?)

The "golden age" of music is between 14 and 24.

That is, when a person is in that age range.

Each generation has to learn that all over again, instructed by their kids.

Evanescence? Linkin Park? What the heck is wrong with you guys? Has radio finally diluted everyone's taste to the point where this is considered music you purchase and listen to?

Here are what I'd consider the best albums I've bought in the last nine years:

Wilco, "A Ghost is Born"
Rilo Kiley, "More Adventurous"
The Thermals, "The Body, The Blood, The Machine"
The Strokes, "First Impressions of Earth"
Arctic Monkeys, "Whatever You Say I Am, That's What I Am"
Jenny Lewis, "Rabbit Fur Coat"
Midlake, "The Trials of Van Occupanther"
Camera Obscura, "Let's Get Out Of This Country"
Sonic Youth, "Rather Ripped"
The Cardigans, "Super Extra Gravity"
The Decemberists, "The Crane Wife"
Deerhoof, "Friend Opportunity"
Eisley, "Room Noises"
Futureheads, "News And Tributes"

Linkin Park absolutely one of the good bands. You're old. ;)

In fact, I am only 26 years old. Furthermore, I first heard Linkin Park when I was 18, back in 2001. Soon after, I purchased Hybrid Theory because I thought the radio single being played at the time was catchy. I gave it a couple of listens and decided it was almost completely void of any substance and that every song had been explicitly written so as to maximize the chances of it becoming a radio hit.

I think LP's music is the very epitome of talentless, art-free hackery. Nothing I have heard from them since that first album has challenged me to revise that assessment. No offense intended to your particular tastes, of course. :)

BTW, I agree that Dead Can Dance are pretty awesome.

Whenever I hear of Evanescence, I'm reminded of comedian David Cross's comment on them: "I would sooner hear the death rattle of my only child than listen to this sh*t."

Ages 14-24, huh?

For me that's 1958-68. I've got Elvis (early & middle), the Beach Boys, the Beatles, the Stones, Monterey Pop (Mamas & Papas, the Who, Hendrix, Joplin), etc. Not to mention Motown.

I'll back my "decade" against anyone's.

And while you're at it, GET OFF MY LAWN!

14-24? ridiculous.

i would argue for 1324 as the real golden age of music--that's when guillaume de machaut starts producing the most perfect compositions ever written.

there's been some other crap music written since then, but it all sucks.

and get out of my moat, too!

The Strokes, Sonic Youth, DCarigans, and Decemberists are all great. I keep meaning to listen to Wilco but never do.

If you get around to it, I wouldn't pick "A Ghost Is Born" or "Yankee Hotel Foxtrot" as entry points. They can be a little difficult. "Being There" is probably a good introduction to them.

I'm with you Dr Ngo.

Searching around for my TA-50(field gear). I'll take some 60's tunes with me. Show some of those kids what real music is.

Dave C:
I gave it a couple of listens and decided it was almost completely void of any substance and that every song had been explicitly written so as to maximize the chances of it becoming a radio hit.

Ah, you're one of those music listeners. "Substance" is a secondary concern for me, if not a tertiary one. Whether or not I like the song (for its own sake) is a lot more important to me than what the song has to say. I've blogged about this before.

Sebastian:

I'm not sure I like "Goth metal" as a genre. In fact, I'm not sure I even knew it was a genre until you mentioned it. I just sort of like what I like. I'll check out "Dead Can Dance."

For the record, what I liked about Fallen is that it's hard-as-nails, but Amy Lee can sing. You want a formula to make music that tgirsch will eat up? Guitar-driven hard rock or heavy metal with clear vocals attached. Throw in some cross-genre influence, and some three- or four-part Beatles-style vocal harmonies, and you're REALLY cooking with gas. Here's an example, although not the best one -- just the best I can find on short notice.

tgirsch - Well, I'm not sure whether or not I'm one of "those" music listeners in general, but Linkin Park just rubs me the wrong way. Everything about their music strikes me as being one gigantic, shallow, suburban-angst cliche. Ben Folds, whom I adore, perfectly parodied their style (along with the style of several other bands) with his song "Rockin' the Suburbs." The album of the same name is terrific.

Dave C:

I can understand that. For me, Hybrid Theory was a flash-in-the-pan album for them; I haven't liked much since. Plus that came out at a very angry time in my life (I was in Orlando working for Disney -- that would make pretty much anyone identify with suburban angst), so that's probably one of those moment-in-time things.

I'll have to check out the Ben Folds parody, though. :) In the same vein, I've always liked this song (you can skip the 2:45 spoken introduction, but it's very funny).

You want a formula to make music that tgirsch will eat up? Guitar-driven hard rock or heavy metal with clear vocals attached. Throw in some cross-genre influence, and some three- or four-part Beatles-style vocal harmonies, and you're REALLY cooking with gas.

tgirsch, you just reminded me of QOTSA with this description. How could I have left Rated R and Songs for the Deaf off my 2000-2005 list? Jeez!

OK, Tenacious D was at the bottom of my list. I thought it deserved a second post. Go buy that right now and have yourself a wonderful evening listening to that album.

Just hilarious. Plus Dave Grohl on drums and the Dust Brothers providing the electricity and Page McConnell of Phish on the keyboards. World class.

I'll be checking out a ton of these listed. Thanks folks! I purposely stuck to just 2000-2004, but there are a ton just on the borders I'd push on you if I could.

OK, just one.

Pavement - Terror Twilight I would say it's more accessible than most of their albums. It's more a Stephen Malkmus solo album. But it's awesome. My favorite Pavement album by a wide stretch, which probably puts in the minority for Pavement fans.

Plus Dave Grohl on drums...

He's the drummer on Songs for the Deaf, too.

I'm trying to think about the best way to approach Dead Can Dance, and I'm unsure. I want to suggest "A Passage In Time" because it has a huge number of their best songs, but a large portion of what makes them interesting is each album as a whole--which of course you don't capture on a compilation.

Maybe "The Serpent's Egg"? Maybe just listen to some individual songs and decide if you like them. Probably try:

The Ubiquitous Mr Lovegrove
Cantara
The Host of Seraphim
In the Kingdom of the Blind The One-Eyed are Kings

Anyone else like Dead Can Dance and can give advice?

I read your post on types of listeners. The funny thing is I'm definitely both. I love songs often just for their musicality like the Bubblegum Pop Team, but I also find songs that say things excellent like the Important Music Team.

My emotional favorites are a weird crossover of those two. I call them dreaming artists. They are musically excellent, and sound deep at first, but on inspection their lyrics tend to have dream like jumps or confusion that often puts off the Important Music Team. Peter Gabriel and Tori Amos are the two examples I use most (though Erasure at its best sometimes did that too). Dead Can Dance if defintiely the dream type.

Pavement - Terror Twilight I would say it's more accessible than most of their albums.

Really? I would say that Brighten The Corners is their most "conventional" album.

"Pavement - Terror Twilight I would say it's more accessible than most of their albums."

"Really? I would say that Brighten The Corners is their most 'conventional' album."

I agree, but I think Terror Twilight deepens the path they took with Brighten The Corners. Even less dissonance and loud banging chaos at points that some people can't take from the first couple of albums. More melodic and groovey, and simply polished.

If Terror Twilight were playing in the background, I don't even think my mom would complain.

I wouldn't call it conventional, but I would call it accessible.

Hi. Maybe it just got lost in the shuffle, but did no one notice my comment above about our house being on fire, and the resulting events?

I realize it's highly self-centered of me to hope someone might comment, but there you go. I'm a little shaken up and all, and not to mention very worried about not being able to get my desktop computer working again.

dr ngo's comment resonated with a recent experience; I was on vacation and the wife wanted to visit an Amish flea market in Ohio; we entered and "Little Old Lady From Pasadena" was playing on the PA system.

Something out of whack, there.

I second Yankee Hotel Foxtrot, which I thought was near-genius. I'd have to go think a while to come up with anything other than the always-wonderful (but rarely danceable) Bela Fleck and the Flecktones Little Worlds.

Hopefully the [email protected] has been swept into the appropriate dustbin by assorted and sundry esteemed frontpagers in my absence.

Gary,

Your monitor is most likely fine. You'll need to try your hard drive in another pc as a secondary drive to see if it's accessible. Sounds like it's a desktop so whatever is wrong is replacable. You should have checked for wetness inside before turning back on.

sorry for your loss. Good luck. But seriously. Don't look for sympathy from commenters on a political blog. This isn't a support group. I don't mean to be a d*ck at all but you obviously already have a blog talking about this and people offering moral support there. Why are you looking for more here? And no, I don't need an answer to that.

Now back to the music.

"You should have checked for wetness inside before turning back on."

I can't imagine why, as the only water spread during the fire was on the outside of the house, on an outside wall, on the other side of the house. There was no wetness added to this room in the slightest. Not a drop. What I'm concerned about is the possibility of a power surge having fried something, despite my running through a UPS and three additional surge protectors. (I also can't get the sound to work on my tv, for reasons yet unknown.)

The house router and cable modem got fried after the lightning strike.

"But seriously. Don't look for sympathy from commenters on a political blog. This isn't a support group. I don't mean to be a d*ck at all but you obviously already have a blog talking about this and people offering moral support there. Why are you looking for more here? And no, I don't need an answer to that."

And yet I'll give you one: a) this is an open thread; b) most of the people who post here regularly are friends; we post comments out our personal lives, and some of our troubles all the time; c) certainly I've done this before, but so have plenty of other folk, such as wonkie, bedtimeforbonzo, and on and on. I have lots of friends here. People give each other moral support on a huge variety of issues all the time. If you had the faintest familiarity with ObWi, you'd be aware of this.

d) This isn't solely a "political blog," and never has been; this is an open thread, in which the primary topic has been music, but in which people are free to post about any subject (not that people have a problem switching topics in any thread, so long as it isn't done deliberately to be disruptive).

So, in short, I have to wonder exactly how long you've been reading this blog; I've been commenting here regularly, to the tune of tens of thousands of comments, for over six years now. You? What, exactly, is the basis of your experience here for you to be issuing me your learned wisdom on how ObWi works?

Thanks for the advice.

I've been reading this blog for years, but I rarely comment, although my first comment was probably a couple of years ago.

So I gave you your response, as requested, but I had to point out that I didn't get why you were asking for one when you're already getting that on your own blog. Anyway, good luck with the fire.

BTW, what are your top five albums of 2000-2004?

Von: "Don't try to predict my favorites from the era, tell me yours". Also, "I don't have time to listen to 17 records".

Fair enough -- and you _might_ have time to find a couple of MP3's per record, so without actually checking the ease of doing that (sorry!), I'll add suggested highlights that display a reasonable share of each album's range.

* Amy X Neuburg, Residue ("Tattoo Song", "Stone", "Residue")

* Loud Family, Attractive Nuisance ("Backward Century", "Soul D.C.")

* Dresden Dolls, S/T ("Coin-Operated Boy", "Girl Anachronism")

* Regina Lund, Everybody's Darling ("Nothing Calms Me Like Revenge", "Courage", "Stay with Me")

* Sage Francis, a Healthy Distrust ("Slow Down, Gandhi", "the Sea Lion") -- warning, immoderate left-wing content

* Ford Pier, Pier-ic Victory ("I Don't Know Nothin' 'Bout Nothin'", "Why on Earth", "Horrible")

* Tris McCall, If One of These Bottles Should Happen to Fall ("Janie Abstract", "He's a Sagittarius", "Lite Radio is My Kryptonite")

* Count Zero, Robots Anonymous ("Cure of a Kiss", "Good News")

Plus Hail to the Thief, System of a Down's Mezmerize, and Tori Amos's Scarlet's Walk, none of which are obscure. If finding MP3s of these songs strikes you as both nice in proposal and hard in practice, feel free to email me (bokonin at hotmail) and I can pass samples along.

As an aside, I thought I'd point out that I am still inexorably wed to complete albums.

If there are one or two songs on an album I don't like, I get rid of the whole thing. Even if I originally liked a song by an artist, if the album it's on has a bunch of weak spots, I end up losing all interest in even that original song.

The only exception to this is hip hop. Very few hip hop albums that are strong from start to finish. Even my favorites, like "The Chronic", have a lot of weak parts.

Hip hop albums that are strong throughout off the top of my head:
De La Soul - 3 Feet High and Rising
PE - It Takes a Nation of Millions... and Fear of a Black Planet
Beastie Boys - Their first four albums, License..., Paul's..., Check..., Ill... (lost track of them once Hello Nasty came out, which I thought stunk.)
Tribe Called Quest - Low End Theory and Midnight Marauders

Any others?

Seb:
I read your post on types of listeners. The funny thing is I'm definitely both.

I still contend you're primarily one or the other. If you're in the habit of even noticing what the lyrics of a song actually say, you're probably primarily on the IMT, even if you like a lot of "bubblegum" music. :)

voxpoptart:

System of a Down is a guilty pleasure for me. I love how it alternates between funk-metal and just completely f'd up. B.Y.O.B. is a perfect example of this.

(lost track of them once Hello Nasty came out, which I thought stunk.)

I agree about Hello Nasty. But I thought they came back very strong with To the 5 Boroughs. And their Sounds of Science anthology is like the soundtrack to my youthful adulthood (18-30). I think it came out in 1999, but I didn't get it until just a couple years ago.

System of a Down is a guilty pleasure for me.

I really liked their first album (still do, a lot), but I liked each successive album less than the previous. My wife kept buying me their new CDs when they would come out and I didn't have the heart to tell her I only really liked the first one, which I bought for myself. The same phenomenon occurred with Korn, which was a far worse case than System of a Down. Korn went so far downhill for me that I can't really get into their first album anymore.

Gary,

FWIW, I care. I'm also taken aback by the number of fires you've been through. I've never experienced that, and don't want to. (I did pass a kidney stone a few years ago, so we do have that bad experience in common. I still suspect there's another one lurking and waiting to strike, especially when I get any weird sensations in my lower left back. I've been drinking lots of water ever since, and I don't eat spinach anymore, I avoid berries for the most part and I've cut way down on my peanut butter intake. It's really impossible to avoid all the things they say can contribute to the formation of kindey stones, and most of those things are otherwise very healthful, requiring some risk management. Shall I go on, since this is an open thread and all? ;))

I had appendicitis. That hurt.

I'll have to check out 5 Boroughs.

"Korn went so far downhill for me that I can't really get into their first album anymore."

That's happened to me with so many bands. Even good ones. U2 I never listen to anymore. I don't mind if someone tosses on one of their old albums, but I don't do it myself anymore.

Funny how something that you think is amazing can be weakened by something else.

Funny how something that you think is amazing can be weakened by something else.

Yeah, I'd say it's an associative taint. Plus I think at least in some cases you find the seeds of the things you don't like about a band's newer music in their older music, even though those seeds weren't a problem for you in the past, since they then lacked the context provided by the later music.

Plus I think at least in some cases you find the seeds of the things you don't like about a band's newer music in their older music, even though those seeds weren't a problem for you in the past, since they then lacked the context provided by the later music.

Totally. Like realizing U2's lyrics have always been terrible. Bono just had a better voice and sang them more earnestly when he was younger. LOL.

One thing about U2. The Edge is amazing. I've seen them in concern a ton of times because my best friend still loves them and I never turn down a concert. I really wish The Edge would do some side projects. He doesn't get nearly enough props as a guitarist. He's worlds above the rest of that band.

"BTW, what are your top five albums of 2000-2004?"

a) I'm a little busy dealing with the various aftermaths of running out of the house at dawn, what with the house being on fire and all, and then coping with what's going on re the hole in the wall, and the electricity going on and off, and then with trying to get my computer working again, and figuring out what parts are fried and what aren't, and as side issues, the sound on my tv seems to have been killed, and the X-Box that Phil Dennison so kindly donated to me a while back also was killed, and a whole lot more besides, so I'm just a tad busy with higher priorities than answering your query.

b) I have absolutely no idea what's been going on in music in the last decade or two.

c) This is an open thread, so I'm still at a loss as to why you felt you "had to" advise me "don't look for sympathy from commenters on a political blog. This isn't a support group," and that you "had to point out that I didn't get why you were asking for" sympathy. People give each other sympathy here all the time.

"I don't mean to be a d*ck at all"

I suggest reconsidering the difference between your intentions and your result, and what the meaning of "had to" is.

Good luck with your music discussion, to modify your empathetic response of "Anyway, good luck with the fire."

I like U2. And some of Beck, and a lot of female folkie vocalist-writers of recent years; that's about as far as I can contribute to a discussion of modern pop music.

Oh, and I once worked security for a Widespread Panic concert in Boulder, if that counts.

I have been having trouble posting comments from Firefox 3.5 running on Mac OS X 10.5. The preview is fine, but when I echo the CAPTCHA character string and enter, everything hangs indefinitely. Anyone else had similar problems?

a) I'm a little busy dealing with the various aftermaths of running out of the house at dawn, what with the house being on fire and all, and then coping with what's going on re the hole in the wall, and the electricity going on and off, and then with trying to get my computer working again, and figuring out what parts are fried and what aren't, and as side issues, the sound on my tv seems to have been killed, and the X-Box that Phil Dennison so kindly donated to me a while back also was killed, and a whole lot more besides, so I'm just a tad busy with higher priorities than answering your query.

Then why did you bother typing this? You just did answer my query, it just wasn't a good answer.

so I'm still at a loss as to why you felt you "had to" advise me

Because you "HAD TO" ask a second time for a response, despite getting responses on your own blog. So I gave you what you wanted, a response. It just wasn't the "Oh Gary, I feel so terrible for you. Keep your chin up, I'm sure you'll pull through. If there's one person in the world I know who can overcome such hardship, it's that anonymous avatar known as Gary Farber on the Obsidian Wings blog," response you were looking for.

Michael Cain -- I have problems like that on and off, and I've mostly been in IE 7 (now 8). I can't see any pattern to when the problems arise, nor do they happen to me at necessarily the same times they're happening to other people.

Sometimes I've been able to get past the problem by breaking comments into smaller sections and posting them separately. This has happened even on days when other people are posting very long comments and they (apparently, since I see them!) are going through.

You could try that ... it's the only thing I've tried that works.

JanieM -- One of the frustrating things about the problem is that I can invariably cut-and-paste the comment text from Firefox into Safari and post it from Safari without any difficulties, so it doesn't seem to be the size or nature of the comment.

Michael, have you considered setting up a typekey account? That would bypass the code submission step. At least it may help narow down what step in the process is causng the problem.

Noseeum -- I set up an account and it makes the problem even worse: now I can't even preview messages in Firefox.

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