This is where I hopped on the Fiona Apple wagon. Been a happy, devoted passenger ever since. I still get that displaced, uncanny feeling during certain Extraordinary Machine songs, like the leaked version of the album I first heard was the real one and these tracks are remixes, but it’s been a really long time since I heard the leaked stuff — not even sure I still have it — so that feeling is more faded than ever. Like a ghost that just kinda shrugged its shoulders and started walking away.
Speaking of giving things up, I gave this to Baby YHT to hold while we were walking out to the car this morning and she refused to give it back. I buckled her into her car seat and calmly said “If you want to listen to this music, you have to let go.” And she did. What a kid. Either she:
A. Is getting easier to bargain with
B. Really likes Fiona Apple
C. Really hates Morning Edition
D. Knows that it’s her mom’s copy and desperately wanted to cling to anything mommy-related because mommy being in a different room or somewhere else these days is ABSOLUTELY A REASON TO PANIC WHY AREN’T YOU PANICKING TOO DADDY WE’VE GOT A REAL SITUATION ON OUR HANDS HERE
Fiona Apple — “Not About Love” [Spotify/iTunes]
If you’re a YHT regular, you might have spent some small portion of the last few weeks asking yourself “Hey, why hasn’t he said anything about March Madness? He loves the tournament…” You’d be right! Last year I did a two–part “Tournament Album Coverage” post, and the year before that I celebrated a VCU win by creating a crude mashup of six “Black And Yellow” remixes playing simultaneously. (It still makes me cringe, then laugh, then cringe some more. There’s treble, there’s too much treble, and then there’s my “Black And Yellow” mashup.)
It’s not that I haven’t been watching. On the contrary — I got to binge-watch on the first Friday of the tournament — aka Basketball Christmas — and like last year I listened to records the whole time, but it wasn’t quite as upbeat this time around. My billion-dollar bracket was knocked out of contention by the very first game on Thursday, then Duke was upset by 14-seed Mercer in the very first game on Friday afternoon, killing my personal rooting interest and taking my bracket out of contention in my family’s pool (I had Duke losing in the final game). Just like that, my hopes were dashed, and the weekend hadn’t even started yet. I wondered whether I’d feel like watching at all on Friday evening.
Then I came up with a plan.
Instead of letting my disappointments ruin Basketball Christmas, I decided to put my vinyl collection to good use by throwing myself the most comically depressing pity party I could muster while rooting for every favored seed — no matter how far my bracket had them going — to lose. It was way more fun than it should have been.
Here are the covers to prove it:
Exactly one year ago, Vampire Weekend donned some pretty sinister face paint and performed “Unbelievers” on Jimmy Kimmel Live!‘s Halloween show. If memory serves, these were the first notes I heard of what would become Modern Vampires of the City. It’s crazy looking back on that now. For me, MVOTC is one of those special cases where you listen to an album so many times you damn-near internalize it, and then it becomes surreal to think about how, at one point not so long ago, it didn’t exist at all.
Filed under #features, #live
The end of last week was… eventful. Fateful, even. On consecutive nights, I got to see Father John Misty at the National and Fiona Apple and Blake Mills’ “Anything We Want” tour at the Lincoln Theater on U St. in Washington, D.C. Both shows were incredible, and I’m still trying to sort through all the ways in which the two experiences were related. I’m not going to dive in right now, since I’d like to write something longer when I have a better map of those relationships (and when I manage to put a leash on my impulse to use superlative language like “best concert I’ve ever seen” and “so beautiful I was moved to tears”), but I did want to take a quick moment and share a song Blake Mills performed on Friday night in D.C.
According to the Kindle application on my phone, I’m 14% of the way through Mo’ Meta Blues, the new memoir from Ahmir “Questlove” Thompson. And while it would probably behoove me to wait until I’ve read, oh, I don’t know, at least a third of the Roots drummer’s book before I start sharing opinions about it, I can’t help jumping in with a quick reaction to Thompson’s relationship with record reviews.