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July 12, 2007


Three Aquarium Drunkard-related posts to start the morning:

Singer-songwriter John Vanderslice shares his favorite San Francisco spots with Aquarium Drunkard.

Autumn Tone, the label owned by Aquarium Drunkard's Justin Gage, is reissuing Travel By Sea's Shadows Rise (you can buy it here).

In the Arizona Republic, Aquarium Drunkard's Justin Gage interviews singer-songwriter David Vandervelde.

Q: I love how the album sounds very informed by classic '70s rock, e.g. Marc Bolan and Ziggy-era Bowie specifically. Was the early '70s glam angle something you were going for or a happy accident?

A: I grew up listening to a lot of different stuff. Oldies with my dad, to hard rock of the '90s with my older brother and everything in between. I love music from the '70s . . . I think that it is the best time period ever for music. Being young, I feel like I can step back and take in a lot from the past. I got really in to recording my own music right around the time I started writing, so I am quite the studio production nerd. The '60s and '70s just sound so analog and beautiful to me, everything from records like George Harrison's All Things Must Pass to the first Roxy Music record and, of course, all the Bee Gees. These are just a few records from that era that have been favorites of mine for the past few years, and I feel honored to be a part of keeping some of those sounds alive. I would call it going for a happy accident (laughs).

The Phoenix lists "10 landmark albums hat made indie rock," along with 25 more honorable mentions.

Colin Meloy of the Decemberists talks to the Baltimore Sun.

"I think I work best when dealing with structure," Meloy says. "It focuses you to think. Writing songs is like a puzzle. Songwriting is more of an intricate puzzle for me. ... In the band, we're kind of music scholars in a sense. We love all types of music. I think the band is an effort to create a music based out of our influences. It's all anchored by the eccentricity of the lyrics."

Popmatters offers tips on raising musically well-rounded children.

Popmatters interviews John Green, author of An Abundance of Katherines (on sale now at Amazon for $4.99, by the way).

How do you respond to slights against the genre?

Almost everyone who dismisses contemporary teen literature hasn’t read much of it. So it doesn’t bother me at all, really. I wish people would read more of the ambitious YA novels being published right now, but I also wish people would read more of the ambitious adult novels being published right now.

Singer-songwriter Jason Isbell talks to the New London Day.

“All along, what I've tried to do is focus on making music that's informed and intelligent,” Isbell says by phone from his apartment in Muscle Shoals, Ala., which perhaps appropriately is located over a bar, poolroom and rehearsal hall. “It's also true that we're all southerners, so that's part of it and lends perspective. It's not to say we're not proud of being from the South, but it's not anything we had control over. It's probably better to be proud of something you have control over.”

Visit Save Net Radio, and inform yourself of the huge increases in royalty fees facing internet radio station in two days, and how you can join the fight against them.

Variety reports that Sean Penn and Iggy Pop have signed on as voice talent for the English-language version of the Persepolis film.

Drowned in Sound asks its readers which record labels they can trust.

USA Today's Pop Candy blog (one of my favorites) is soliciting photos of your favorite band t-shirts.

Pre-order the 2-CD version of the new Okkervil River album, The Stage Names, from Jagjaguwar and receive a free instantly downloadable version of the album. (via)

The Futurist is sharing a couple of mp3s from Palomar's recent WOXY Lounge Act session.

RIOTTT interviews photographer Elena Dorfman, who just published an art book, Fandomania: Characters & Cosplay.


There’s no question. My goal wasn’t costuming at all. It was about disarming them, in a lot of ways. A lot of times they’d come in ready to get into warrior crouch pose, and I couldn’t stand that, that wasn’t at all what I was after, so I’d have to politely ask them to put down their props and do a few things that didn’t involve them being in character. So it was very much about finding out who these people are through the avatars they chose.

The Broward-Palm Beach New Times, unable to secure Morrissey for an interview, talks to Moz impersonator Jose Maldonado (of Sweet & Tender Hooligans) instead.

But what is it about Morrissey that appeals so much to the Mexican-American experience?

I like the theory that because we´re a passionate people, and Morrissey is a passionate guy that´s why we gravitate toward him. His lyrics are so melodramatic and over the top about the feeling you´re experiencing at that very moment. ¨You could cry a million tears and I would swim through them to get to you¨ that kind of thing. Then there´s the loneliness and isolation feeling that we as Latinos can kind of identify with. Morrissey´s experience growing up Irish in northern England was probably not unlike what Latinos experience growing up in southern California.

IGN interviews John Flansburgh of They Might Be Giants.

Joe Cardamone of the Icarus Line talks to the Los Angeles Times.

Musically, it's still the gnarled root of the Rolling Stones' tree, or one of the Stooges' severed limbs — it's noisy and snarling yet seemingly approached with amped-up wonder rather than punk antagonism. Has the band grown up? Fans can decide, Cardamone says: "If you listen to all three of our records and you consider it a progression, then I'd say yes. I know some people who think we've grown down. Some people think we should break bottles over our heads."

Patterson Hood of the Drive-By Truckers talks to the Philadelphia City Paper about playing live shows wit legendary keyboardist Spooner Oldham.

Hood hopes that this version of the band can last, but admits that "Spooner's the wild card. He's 64 and Neil Young could call him on the spur of the moment and he'd need to go do that, because Lord knows we can't pay him what Neil Young can pay him. I'm just really honored that he's willing to use his down time to go play with us so much. He's got such a unique thing he does. He doesn't do all this fancy stuff, it's very in the pocket, almost subtle, you almost don't even know he's there except if you take it out you'd miss it. This band has never really had as much of the subtlety thing going on, especially live, as we're able to do right now, and that's a lot of fun."

At the Huffington Post, Gloria Steinem takes on the term, "chick flick."

As usual, bias punishes everyone. Therefore I propose, as the opposite of "chick flick" and an adjective of your very own, "prick flick." Not only will it serve film critics well, but its variants will add to the literary lexicon. For example, "prick lit" could characterize a lot of fiction, from Philip Roth to Bret Easton Ellis and beyond. "True prick" could guide readers to their preferred non-fiction, from the classics of Freud to the populist works of socio-biologists and even Rush Limbaugh.

The Nation interviews the editor of Arthur magazine, Jay Babcock.

Have you noticed artists that you cover becoming more radical or speaking out on politics or against the war?

I think that most musicians in the underground tend to be antiwar, peace people, and some of them are more open about it than others. Some of them feel more confident about it and have figured out a way to deal with it onstage or in the press in a way that they think is going to get across something valuable. Devendra [Banhart] didn't have antiwar songs on his early records, but he did on his last album, and that's clearly because of what's been going on and because the situation keeps getting worse and worse.

Writer Frank DeFord talks to NPR's Morning Edition about his new novel, The Entitled.

Richard Reed Parry of the Arcade Fire talks to Drowned in Sound abiut the band's busy summer festival season.

see also:

this week's CD releases