Shot Of Rhythm

[ Saturday, November 13, 2004 ]


A thought

I don't ever want to see another movie about some kind of magic animal (dog, horse, monkey, armadillo) who brings good cheer and previously-absent happiness to a quaint community of outcasts and eccentrics.

On the box right now: Eminem, ENCORE. Mommy, why is Marshall so angry?


Dove With Claws [9:08 AM]

[ Tuesday, November 09, 2004 ]


Junk food, or Another reason why I'll never be a hipster

I bought Shania Twain's GREATEST HITS record today. Now, this is definitely not a purchase that I'm necessarily proud of, but I couldn't resist. Her singles - co-written and produced by her husband, Robert "Mutt" Lange, whose previous resume includes AC/DC and (more appropriately) Def Leppard - are the very definition of disposable pop music, tightly constructed, propulsively memorable, and as guilty a pleasure as this boy's willing to admit to.

What's really striking about this hits set, though, is simply how successful these records are, both in terms of construction and creation. Twain's the first to admit that she's bucking the Nashville system, which resisted her approach as much as that of Waylon, Willie, Dwight or Lyle, and the sound that she and Mutt have created is definitely not "country" in any clinical sense. (Though, it should be said that some of her singles, particularly the early ones, are only a few paces away from true honky tonk: see "No One Needs To Know" or "Whose Bed Have Your Boots Been Under?" for confirmation.) As pop records, which is what they are, they're as good as most in recent memory.

Again, I'm not proud of this, and this is the first Shania Twain record I've ever even thought about buying. But that's what junk food's for: cheap thrills and easy pleasures. If I want something more substantive, I'll never go to Ms. Twain - who Steve Earle once called "the highest paid lap dancer in Nashville" - for my sustenance. But, when the potato chips and Mountain Dew come out, I suppose I can do worse for a soundtrack than "Any Man Of Mine" or "Up." I know, I'm crazy, but I'll admit to it. Can I get an "Amen?"

On the box right now: Alvin Youngblood Hart, START WITH THE SOUL. Now this is music of a higher caliber. A while back, some fellow music geeks and I were discussing what the great albums of the 21st century were so far, and I can't believe I was stupid enough to omit this from the discussion. Alvin Hart is, for my money, the best modern blues musician, and this is undoubtedly his masterpiece. As of now, anyway.


Dove With Claws [10:11 PM]

[ Sunday, November 07, 2004 ]


I'm talkin' about Memphis, it's the land of soul

Just back from a helluva weekend with some great friends in Memphis, Tennessee, where we raised money, hell, a ruckus, the dead, our respective consciousnesses. Everything about the trip was great, and I certainly hope we all get to do it again soon.

So that's where I was. Where I am now: exhausted from a weekend of very little sleep, still plenty pissed about the election but ready to move forward, and already missing the taste of Gus' Fried Chicken. More later...

On the box right now: Nathaniel Mayer, I JUST WANT TO BE HELD. As good an R&B album as I've heard all year, and way more fun than most I've heard in a long time.


Dove With Claws [8:08 PM]