You Sexy Thing: The Critical Gaze upon R'n'B
This is an expanded version of an abstract that I submitted to present at the Museum of Pop Culture's Pop Conference (full program here). It was rejected, which is more-or-less fine, although it's annoying and a little vindicating to pitch about the mis-/under-representation of a genre and lose out to presentations not talking about that genre. What I'm saying is that I reserve the right to remain extremely salty about this, and that it's incredibly confusing and frustrating to have essentially lucked into a lucrative career path while having nothing in particular to show for the considerable time and effort that I've put into my actual interest (doing this)..continue reading
The Sonic Landscape of Las Vegas Again
I didn’t even attempt to salvage the situation this go-round, and so naturally I ended up having a pretty alright time. Alas, I’m not sure that my experience is easily replicable and I’m unqualified to give the advice (speak even if not spoken to; approach interaction from a stance other than "suspicion," etc) that would probably lead most directly to a similar outcome.continue reading
Do you have a moment to talk about Guido's Anidea?
A lot of this will sound familiar - an album that constructs its own world, a nice accompaniment for a night drive - but I think it bears repeating given that Anidea is the work that made me realize that those things were possible with music. It’s undeniably dated, sure, but the concept - the soundtrack to an imaginary RPG in the tradition of the Final Fantasy series - is to my knowledge completely unique. In most contemporaneous reviews, it was lumped in with dubstep (partially, I think, due to a sheer lack of terminology; for god’s sake, "purple music" was still in wide use as a genre name), but its video game origins are so embedded the music that squeezing the album into a non-soundtrack genre or context feels like a disservice.continue reading
Do you have a moment to talk about Shlohmo's Bad Vibes?
I’ve spent some six years of my life listening to this album in every situation imaginable, so it figures that the definitive experience would happen yesterday. Maybe it’s because I hadn’t actually listened to the album in a while, or maybe it’s hard to put myself back into the exact mindset of the era when I truly loved this thing - 2012, 2013, 2014, when I befriended at least three of you mostly because I could talk about Shlohmo for an hour and you’d tolerate it. Anyway, yesterday was far less exciting; the biggest joke of all about my job is that on the rare occasion that I do have to do any work it’s in the most hellish circumstances possible.continue reading
A Guide to Afrobeats
Apologies for the lateness, y’all - today and yesterday, I’ve been at a conference for something called DNN, which we don’t have to talk about at all. Because I’m a lazy, unprincipled shit, I offset my considerably-earlier-than-usual wakeup time with a Lyft to the convention center. My conversation with the driver, Oswaldo, unsettled me for several hours following, and I’m only now getting to this.continue reading
My Idols are Dead and Irony is in Power: A Screed
Apologies in advance, maybe - I decided to try a thing where I get real worked up about some inconsequential gripe and then scribble about it until I exhaust my thoughts on the matter. This is that, more-or-less unedited.continue reading
Do you have a moment to talk about Tweet's Southern Hummingbird?
I can’t front: churning the ol’ newsletter out week by week has become pretty routine (not necessarily a bad thing). In the ten-or-so minutes before I send out a given week’s edition, I decide what I’ll be writing about the next week, then put it out of mind until at least Saturday morning. Over the weekend, I’ll adjust my listening habits to emphasize whatever it is that I’m supposed to be thinking about and take note of any recurring phrases/ideas in the accompanying internal monologue.continue reading
2017: Notable Sundries
Books I’ve Enjoyed In the Last Three Months But Foolishly Didn’t Bring With Me to Write About So More On These Latercontinue reading
- Ralph Ellison, Invisible Man
- Sandra Cisneros, The House on Mango Street
- Vladimir Nabokov, Transparent Things
- Gustave Flaubert, Madame Bovary.