Some awesome websites: http://freemusicarchive.org
found objects, and their use in art. Sound collages
are awesome. See: John Cage, The Books, Meat Beat Manifesto.
I love music. I'm always discovering new bands and composers and
styles and genres. As with all types of information I feel
compelled to consume, there is just too much music that has been
made throughout history and is still floating around in the present
to listen to and have a full appreciation for. It's an anxiety I
have that I am perfectly OK with.
Here are some favorites that most people will know:
Led Zeppelin, Frank Zappa, Pixies, Pink Floyd, Feist, Rage Against
the Machine, Soundgarden, Talking Heads, Tool, Beastie Boys,
Beethoven, Mozart, Tchaikovsky, Bach, Beck, Radiohead. Lots of
other indie bands, or bands that are considered "indie" while being
signed to a major label (makes no sense. What IS indie anymore,
anyway? Ape Has Killed Ape. That is indie. Is Feist still indie?)
Indie in their style of music. But when you become part of the
corporate system you lose that indie cred, unless you somehow have
full creative control.
Glenn Branca is also a genius I have just started to enjoy quite a
Here's my Last.fm profile/site/playlist if you're interested. I
think it's gone buggy now and then and not accurately recorded all
of and in what order I have listened to most of the songs I've
listened to, but it's a decent enough approximation. I'm a believer
that someone's taste in music is one of the indicators of their
overall personality. At least it is in my case.
The Melvins, St. Vincent, Au Revoir Simone, Crystal Castles, Black
Mountain, Bon Iver, Sia, Primus, Aphex Twin, Sonny Sharrock, RJD2,
The Residents, Terry Bozzio, Blonde Redhead, Amon Tobin, Boards of
Canada, Massive Attack, Crystal Method, Ministry, Muslimgauze,
Portishead, Simian Mobile Disco, Alvin Lucier, Mr. Lif, Aesop Rock,
Derek and the Dominos, Blind Faith, Hendrix, The Doors, The Kinks,
Nirvana, Revolting Cocks, Battles, Godspeed You!Black Emperor,
Slint, Library Tapes, Long Distance Calling, A Silver Mt. Zion,
Animal Collective, Beirut, Kings of Convenience, Minus the Bear,
Neutral Milk Hotel, School of Seven Bells, M83, Spoon, Audioslave,
The Whitest Boy Alive, Nellie McKay, Shipping News, Emerson, Lake
and Palmer, Moondog, The Brian Jonestown Massacre, Beef Terminal,
Dan Deacon, Gang Gang Dance, Sergei Rachmaninov/ninoff, Gabriel
Fauré, Giacinto Scelsi (music based around one pitch? Yes,
please!), White Rainbow, Interpol, Valet, Joy Division, Russian
Circles (love that group), The Black Keys, Angelo Badalamenti,
Nightmares on Wax, The Black Angels, Baths, The Books, Crocodiles,
Also: Avant garde/experimental/electronic experimental/musique
concrete and "contemporary classical", some of which is now over
100 years old, so should it still be classified as "contemporary"?
...I love ...I guess what would be called "strange" music, or like
anti-music, in that it isn't "musical" in the traditional sense,
but more of a collection of disparate sounds. Two of my favorite
radio programs are "A Thousand Plateaus" and "Martian Gardens" on
WMUA Sunday nights.
One of my all-time favorite minimalist pieces is Steve Reich's
"Drumming". It conjures up so many emotions and thoughts at once.
It can be maddening but also soothing, chaotic but structured. I've
always been a fan of repeated beats. I can likely trace that back
to childhood in some way that I don't want to disclose here. But,
yeah, check out all four movements of Drumming.
Iannis Xenakis was a visionary composer and his music remains
incredible. Seriously, if you know his work to any degree, message
me, we must converse on his greatness. For a complete aural assault
spend an hour with his piece "Persepolis"
I also have been veeeeery sloooooowly getting into John Cage for
like 7 years. Something about how famous he is has always made me
stop and think "hmm...naah, I'll listen to him later. There's too
many pieces of his I wouldn't know where to start". Although 4'33''
I have a lot of other favorite experimental artists. I'll add them
later. Music is so totally orgasmic for me. Metaphorically
La Monte Young's 6+-hour "The Well-Tuned Piano" is also fantastic.
If you've ever heard Tosca's more minimalist work, TWTP is, if not
an inspiration for the second disc of Tosca's Dehli9 album, very
similar in execution stylistically.
Erik Satie is also incredible. Although he's not strictly
avant-garde. But his work was different structurally I guess. I'm
not so hot on pinpointing the intricacies of various classical
forms. I can hear them for sure, and I recognize them through what
I hear, but I can't put it to words like some fancy pants.
Other people you've never heard of: Larry Polansky *placeholder for
I love books.
Here are some writers I have either read recently, am reading
currently, or plan on reading soon:
Franz Kafka, John Hodgman, Albert Camus, Fyodor Dostoyevsky, Ernest
Hemingway, Kurt Vonnegut, John S. Hall, James Joyce, Proust.
I love comic books. Artists, writers. The whole medium. Alas many
current comics suck big time. I really like the early stuff, and
the precursors to comics. Heck, I just love art in general. And
history. And...art history.
Movies, let's take some random favorites. I have enjoyed a lot of
movies, especially films few have heard of. I really like pre-Hays
Code American films. Lost films make me sad. Heck, lost
anything-art related makes me sad. I'm a historian through and
through, and the reality that there are pieces of history that
could have been preserved/saved lost to us forever is a real shame
Yasujiro Ozu, Akira Kurosawa for the Japanese film makers I know
something about. Ozu's Tokyo Story and Kurosawa's Ikiru have really
had an impact on my life, philosophically speaking.
The Big Lebowski, Donnie Darko, Eyes Wide Shut, A Clockwork Orange,
Casino, The Pledge, Freeway, Raging Bull, Taxi Driver, Affliction,
Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas, The Limey, M, Citizen Kane, The
Magnificent Ambersons (even if it wasn't finished the way Welles
envisioned, I still really enjoyed it and I'd imagine his complete
version would have been even better),
Kill Bill 1&2, Unforgiven, The Machinist, Syriana, Children of
Men, The Constant Gardener, The Assassination of Richard Nixon,
Pan's Labyrinth, Persepolis, Walk Hard, There Will Be Blood,
American Psycho, Notes on a Scandal, The Prestige, The 400 Blows,
Man Bites Dog, Hot Fuzz (possibly best movie ever), Little Caesar,
Umberto D (great, sad sad movie), Atonement, The Public Enemy, I Am
A Fugitive From A Chain Gang (last scene is possibly the best/most
haunting final scene EVER in a dramatic film), I'm getting into
David Lynch: Eraserhead, Mulholland Drive. I love Eraserhead for
its surrealistic weirdness, and I saw Mulholland Drive just
recently. Then I fell into the intriguing theories behind what the
film meant, and I'm totally hooked on it. One of the best films of
the 00s that I've seen. Possibly a life-changing movie for me.
We'll see how true that is in a year or so.
favorite authors (or authors/illustrators): Gaiman, Alan Moore,
Grant Morrison, Mark Waid, Peter Milligan, Garth Ennis, Norwegian
artist Jason (his work is reprinted by Fantagraphics), Warren
Ellis, James Robinson, Jim Krueger w/ Alex Ross, Frank Miller (old
school. New FM ...uh, let's not go there right now), Ed Brubaker,
Brian Azzarello, David Lapham (plus his art. Lapham is awesome),
Chester Brown, Mark Millar (hit and miss). That's a decent sample
if you know about writers.
Artists are far too numerous. Dave McKean is a genius, but Gaiman
only seems to associate with fellow geniuses anyhow.
TV: MST3K, Monty Python, Ren & Stimpy, The Daily Show/Colbert
Report, It's Always Sunny In Philadelphia, Sealab, The Brak Show,
Space Ghost Coast to Coast, Police Squad, Mr. Show, Kids in the
Hall, Flight of the Conchords, The Ben Stiller Show, Clerks:
Animated, Curb Your Enthusiasm, Futurama, 24, Sopranos, Deadwood,
The Wire, True Blood, Big Lake, Hung, Ugly Americans (that show is
hilarious. It looks like an indie comic, too.).
I also LOVE LOVE LOVE Adventure Time and Regular Show. I like
Adventure Time, in particular, for it's combination of cuteness,
the absurd (not the Camus absurd, but the Dadaist absurd), and and
elements of fantasy/folkloric literature.
Oh, and the Black Angels are awesome. It's like Jim Morrison is
living through that band. The lyrics are tight and the music. Oh,
lordy, the music. So fuzzed out.