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534720 Posts in 17980 Topics by 3213 Members - Latest Member: amnesiac September 01, 2015, 03:16:35 PM
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51  Non Smiley Smile Stuff / Smiley Smilers Who Make Music / Re: New demo: Cognitive Dissonance on: August 13, 2015, 06:38:54 PM
Thanks, Bean Bag. I'm not sure I agree--what's new!?--but I appreciate that.
52  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: Why You Hte AGD on: August 12, 2015, 04:27:09 PM
Not so long ago--a few months, probably--AGD posted something along the lines of me having posted the dumbest piece of patronizing twaddle in the history of the board. I disagreed with him, obviously. And so the reason I hate AGD is--oh, wait, I don't have AGD. I don't have anything against AGD. He's informed, has an apparently pesky and annoying fixation on accuracy, and is one of few posters who injects sufficient personality to his posts to be interesting and memorable above the agonizing soft beige of everything else.

Besides, hating someone who posts on a message board is pathetic. Kind of like hating a singer you've never met (for example).

Grow up.
53  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: No Pier Pressure - 4 Months Later on: August 11, 2015, 06:13:04 AM
I like "the Last Song" a LOT more than either "Summer's Gone" or "Southern California," both of which have always been favorites on this board but that just didn't do it for me. The power ballad singalong works for me for whatever reason. SG just felt too pastiche for me, and the "hey we're writing about Brian's life and how he overcame adversity!" lyrics of SC bugged me from the beginning: you only get so many comeback stories before you're just still here. I didn't find it remotely sentimental or touching. But that's just me.

As with most other songs from NPP, I think the beauty lies in the details of the song. Deep in the background there's a lot going on if you listen for it, and it really makes it come alive - (the organ playing in the background at certain moments and the way Brian sings certain lines).

I think Joe Thomas wrote the chord progression, but Brian's arrangements really add a hell of a lot to it.
Completely agree. I didn't even touch on how the recording was put together, but I thought it was really nice. Always did, since it was first previewed on that UK radio show. The best BW ballad ever? No, but that's no crime. Some grand send off? Why saddle it with absurd expectations? It's a song. I like it.
54  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: No Pier Pressure - 4 Months Later on: August 11, 2015, 05:47:14 AM
I like "the Last Song" a LOT more than either "Summer's Gone" or "Southern California," both of which have always been favorites on this board but that just didn't do it for me. The power ballad singalong works for me for whatever reason. SG just felt too pastiche for me, and the "hey we're writing about Brian's life and how he overcame adversity!" lyrics of SC bugged me from the beginning: you only get so many comeback stories before you're just still here. I didn't find it remotely sentimental or touching. But that's just me.
55  Non Smiley Smile Stuff / General Music Discussion / Re: The return of the \ on: August 10, 2015, 04:36:20 PM

I'm currently listening to Angel Olsen's Burn Your Fire for No Witness. My friend is in love with her. Also I must commend her for performing at the show I went to: the wind was knocking everything over and she was still singing through her wind-tossled hair.

There were about four songs off that album I really liked. Pretty good album overall.
56  Non Smiley Smile Stuff / General Music Discussion / Re: 2015 New Releases on: August 10, 2015, 04:34:54 PM
New Joanna Newsom in October.

http://www.dragcity.com/products/divers

That's great. I really liked her past two albums. Those were so different from each other, I wonder what direction this will take.

Well, you can find out by clicking the link below:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?t=31&v=ky9Ro9pP2gc

Well la-di-goshdarn-da, wouldja look at that... Thanks, Schmubbly. Interesting song. Great piano in there. (And as for styles, I'd say it's splitting the difference.)
57  Non Smiley Smile Stuff / The Sandbox / Re: Gardening on: August 10, 2015, 03:05:25 PM

Pull the leaves off and chuck 'em in the bin or burn them or mutilate them in some other satisfying fashion because it's likely your plants are on the way out due to the blight, it's like cancer for plants (fingers crossed for recovery tho). (Just don't compost them, or the fungus will stick around).


OK, this is done, and while one of the three tomato plants is pretty sad looking, at least what's left appears healthy for now. I'll keep an eye on them to see whether the blight spreads or appears anywhere else. Thanks again for the tip.

But sadly it looks like I'll be leaning more heavily on my CSA tomatoes this year. Less homemade salsa...
58  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: No Pier Pressure - 4 Months Later on: August 10, 2015, 02:54:49 PM
Everyone can post whatever he or she wants, but seriously, please, can we have one thread that isn't infected by the antagonistic Love-hate and Love-apologetics (itself seemingly mostly an excuse for people to behave shittily toward each other)? Please? Or does the entire General On Topic Discussions forum have to be a cesspool? Please quarantine whatever garbage you feel the need to incessantly retry where the rest of us can keep clean.

But hey, you don't have to. So maybe don't.   
59  Non Smiley Smile Stuff / General Music Discussion / Re: 2015 New Releases on: August 10, 2015, 02:50:26 PM
Not sure this has been noted in this thread, but Lana Del Rey has another new album reportedly coming out this fall. (I say "another" because she just had one in '14.) Album or not, she has been putting out plenty of tracks lately, including this new "High By the Beach." The link is to the Pitchfork story, which talks about the album and links to the clip of the song.

http://pitchfork.com/news/60726-lana-del-rey-shares-high-by-the-beach/
60  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: No Pier Pressure - 4 Months Later on: August 10, 2015, 10:47:18 AM
Back on the NPP topic....

Has anyone else noticed a slight similarity between Our Special Love and Spring Vacation.

Just before the chorus, "nothing but nothing" sounds a tad like "get up and hit up." 


Oh it's more than a slight similarity. It struck me on first listen: I know I wrote about it in the thread that ran when that song first appeared in 2014, the thread where Hollens posted.

By the way, while I still don't love that song's boy-band cheese factor, there are some nice changes in the NPP version that help me enjoy it more.

Granted, I've never heard the 2014 Hollens version, but the version on NPP doesn't strike me as being "boy band-ish."  I don't hear anything in it that makes me recall with cringe worthy boy bands of the late 1990s (what a terrible time for music).  Granted, I think it would sound better with actual instruments, but I think the harmonies are very good on that song.  

Oh it's not dramatically different, just some different parts added and/or differently mixed. The part I find cringeworthy is Hollens's lead. Not that he's a bad singer, it just is so cheesy at that point overall. :55 seconds or so up until the "Spring Vacation " bit is its first go-round. Just not a fan.

61  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: No Pier Pressure - 4 Months Later on: August 10, 2015, 10:16:32 AM
Back on the NPP topic....

Has anyone else noticed a slight similarity between Our Special Love and Spring Vacation.

Just before the chorus, "nothing but nothing" sounds a tad like "get up and hit up." 


Oh it's more than a slight similarity. It struck me on first listen: I know I wrote about it in the thread that ran when that song first appeared in 2014, the thread where Hollens posted.

By the way, while I still don't love that song's boy-band cheese factor, there are some nice changes in the NPP version that help me enjoy it more.
62  Non Smiley Smile Stuff / General Music Discussion / Re: 2015 New Releases on: August 10, 2015, 07:12:53 AM
New Joanna Newsom in October.

http://www.dragcity.com/products/divers

That's great. I really liked her past two albums. Those were so different from each other, I wonder what direction this will take.
63  Non Smiley Smile Stuff / The Sandbox / Re: Gardening on: August 09, 2015, 04:10:16 PM
Well, damnit, I think you've diagnosed my problem. It has been a hot and humid July (and somewhat in August), with upper 80s Fahrenheit pretty regularly and humidity in the 70-80+% range, and I did plant the tomatoes closer together than was recommended. See, my whole garden is actually only about 12' long and about 2' on one end to 4' or so on the other. You see how much I crammed in there by my first post.

The poor little beetles I tossed aside might not have been to blame after all. Guess I should've tossed myself aside. Tomorrow I'll get after the bad leaves. Thanks for the insights!
64  Non Smiley Smile Stuff / The Sandbox / Gardening on: August 09, 2015, 02:20:09 PM
Anyone a gardener? Great, blah blah smalltalk. I have a problem / question.

I have three tomato plants this year (a Roma, a grape, and something I forgot...just kind of a medium-sized, typical looking tomato). The lattermost of those three plants has yellowing around edges of leaves, with blackish-brown spots on some. The other two both have fruits with one or two small (bigger than a penpoint, smaller than a magic marker...maybe a sharpie?) black dots on several fruits. Just today, I saw a large (the size of a quarter), black beetle just sitting on a grape tomato. Not moving. I smacked him off with a stick and he flew out of the garden. Twenty minutes later, he or a similar looking pal of his were on one of the other plants' fruits, again not moving. Just ... sitting there.

Any ideas as to what's causing the leaf discoloration, black dots on fruit? Is it this bastard of a beetle? I'm in Minnesota, if that helps anyone's diagnosis.

Back to the general topic, I'm a half-assed gardener. I like fresh herbs, mostly, so I have thyme, mint, rosemary, oregano, savory, parsley, cilantro, dill, chives, and sage. I've also got the three aforementioned tomato plants, a tomatillo plant, a jalapeno plant, and a couple of other chilis whose name I forgot. And strawberries. And rhubarb. I don't spend a lot of time on them, and if I had to, I'd just quit doing it altogether. But this is maybe the fourth or fifth year I've had tomatoes and I've never had this issue before.

Assistance would be much appreciated. Otherwise, if anyone just feels like talking about their gardening or farming experience, well, that's lovely too.
65  Non Smiley Smile Stuff / Smiley Smilers Who Make Music / New Recording: Cognitive Dissonance on: August 09, 2015, 11:57:20 AM
"Promptly" in this case meant "in about three years."

This is a ballad that I really rethought and overthought a lot. It wants to be the ultimate cheesy power ballad, but it does have a certain amount of drama inherent in it. So I tried to walk a line that let me stay on the tolerable side of melodrama and cliche.

Zach drummed, as is the case on my past few recordings. I did the rest yesterday, with the music box and (typically bad) mix today.

https://soundcloud.com/the-beau-mondes/cognitive-dissonance
66  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: ADULT/CHILD a hit? on: August 09, 2015, 07:56:15 AM
The idea of Adult/Child being a hit seems to me to be one of fans' dreams. Cultists would argue to convince their friends that this--cigarettes going pfft and smoking grass having gone out a long time ago--was genius; those friends would have promised themselves they'd work on finding new friends with less bizarre taste in, or at least weaker passions for, music.

There are things on this would-be album I do love. In fact, it's easier to list the songs I don't like: "Hey Little Tomboy" (not the worst thing ever, but not very interesting); "On Broadway" (dull enough to make "Hey Little Tomboy seem revolutionary, innovative); and "Shortenin' Bread" (Brian can like it all he wants but that doesn't mean I have to). The two Sunflower/Surf's Up era songs are nice enough, entirely pleasant if awkward in the way "Good Time" was on Love You.

But the band's relative hits of the era were the one sound not represented here: nostalgia, fun, summertime pop. Not to say all of their music of that ilk succeeded, but their music of other styles didn't. So big-band arrangements of bizarre lyrics? Smooth pedophilia rock? A scratchy, simple ode to America's game? I doubt Debby Boone's dominance of autumn 1977 would have been challenged by "Lines."


67  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: No Pier Pressure - 4 Months Later on: August 07, 2015, 04:14:31 PM
Why did Brian Wilson (or whoever) sue Joe Thomas? What was the outcome of the lawsuit?

http://www.rollingstone.com/music/news/brian-wilson-settles-suit-with-former-partner-20000718
68  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: No Pier Pressure - 4 Months Later on: August 07, 2015, 04:11:07 PM
we should start picking which of the band members is the cute one, which one is the mysterious one, which one is the funny one, and which one is Danny Wood

Scott, Darian, Nelson, and Paul, respectively.
69  Non Smiley Smile Stuff / General Music Discussion / Re: The \ on: August 07, 2015, 03:09:15 PM
Jesus Christ, man! Nice work of late.

If I'm not mistaken, you weren't yet familiar with Wilco when their new album dropped. I take it based on your buying habits that you've at least taken something of a shine to them?

Zappa's Yellow Shark is a great, great album.
70  Non Smiley Smile Stuff / General Music Discussion / Re: 2015 New Releases on: August 07, 2015, 01:39:27 PM
On Your Own Love Again, by Jessica Pratt

What is this, some old unearthed, reissued late '60s or early '70s Bay Area singer songwriter? While both the cover art and music itself suggest that could be the case, this is a contemporary artist and a new recording. Its nine songs pass in not much more than 30 minutes, gone before you feel you've quite grabbed onto the melodies or ideas, leaving a pleasant feeling in which you're not quite confident.

Pratt accompanies her unique voice--think a huskier Joanna Newsom, maybe, minus the yelps and squeaks--on acoustic guitar through songs that feel more folk than pop, but not folk of the repetitiously strummed-three-chord variety. Structurally Joni Mitchell keeps coming to mind as songs turn left when you expected right, Pratt picking her way through sometimes unexpected arpeggios (the dissonance in "I've Got a Feeling" for example).

There fuller arrangements than guitar-and-voice but not many, and not always immediately obvious. Sometimes its only a few bars into an electric piano or some such subservient supplement that it's noticeable at all. Her own vocal harmony overdubs stand out more immediately.

Hers is an interesting voice, Pratt's. It has an affectation now and then of cuteness, maybe coyness. There is almost a touch of an accent that almost borders on English and decidedly is not native to Pratt's California: one suspects an act. But for whatever turnoff a faux-sprite could cause, Pratt's voice has some scratch to it now and again, especially when she explores the low end of her range (an unusual move for a female pop singer), as in "Greycedes" and the lovely "Jacqueline in the Background." That song also finds (presumably digital) "tape speed" affecting the pitch of the entire performance, a disconcerting finale to a pretty piece of music.

Those songs are two of the better on the album. "Game That I Play" is another one. "People's faces blend together like a watercolor you can't remember in time, dah-doo, day-doo." The song ebbs slowly, takes patience. Chords last measures. Lines sink in through elongated oohs and ahhs. You may find yourself not paying attention as the song washes you slowly. Poppier and more immediate is "Back, Baby," an uptempo tune rare for its prominent strummed guitar.

The most immediately singable and maybe memorable song, "Strange Melody," is also the least enjoyable to these ears. It calls to mind hippies thinking they're onto something deep and mystical as they babble their way through a minor key. Different strokes, but its the subtler songs that feel more substantive. Those songs, with a guitar not always entirely in tune and a voice struggling to be heard, earn repeated listens.
71  Smiley Smile Stuff / Welcome to the Smiley Smile board / Re: New here on: August 07, 2015, 12:38:19 PM
Welcome, Senator. Have a good time.
72  Non Smiley Smile Stuff / General Music Discussion / Re: The return of the \ on: August 07, 2015, 12:32:30 PM

Have you heard their first album, when they were called Flake music and not the Shins? You seem pretty music savvy, so maybe you have Grin, but that's a fun album.

Yes. I wasn't aware of it in 1997, but I sought it out after getting into the Shins. It's OK. Sounds like what it is: an early album by someone who doesn't quite have it all together yet. Not as well crafted as their later work, to say the least, but you can hear them in there. It's more historical artifact than album for me, though. (That sounds like a shitty thing to say, but I don't mean it as an insult. Just the nature of the thing.)
73  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: Why do you hate Mike Love? on: August 07, 2015, 10:18:56 AM
I don't hate Mike Love. Sometimes I love his singing, sometimes not. Sometimes he's funny, sometimes not. Sometimes his lyrics strike me as great, sometimes not. Sometimes his reported behavior or quoted words strike me as annoying, sometimes not. But hate him? My life might not be the most thrilling in the world, but it would have to be pretty pathetic to spend it, to spend that energy, hating some pop singer I don't know personally.
74  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: No Pier Pressure - 4 Months Later on: August 07, 2015, 09:49:27 AM
I like the album at least as much as I did when it was released. While I understand a lot of the criticisms leveled toward it--and even agree with some of them on some level--I've personally found the ability to just not be affected by them and instead of wishing something else were in its place, enjoying what is actually there. It's been an absolute pleasure for me to listen to relatively often. Its songs pop up on shuffle while I'm running and I almost inevitably turn off shuffle and just listen straight through from whatever song appeared. And many nights, I've put on headphones and listened to a track or two in sentimental, drunken bliss.

NPP isn't the greatest album associated with the guy, but it's a really strong, diverse, and enjoyable one. For me it ranks with TLOS and BWPS as his best solo work. I hope we get something else--especially of original pop songs--from him, though obviously eventually that will just be that and we'll be left with the catalog.
75  Non Smiley Smile Stuff / General Music Discussion / Re: White Album - Single Album on: August 07, 2015, 09:21:49 AM
And not all concept albums are narrative pieces.  ie.  Darkside of the Moon is about madness in general, but doesn't have a narrative story like The Wall. 

Oh absolutely. Those are the type I think are more likely to succeed (for me). They give the writer(s) more leeway.
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