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My Early Noms for Album of the Year


Released first was Frightened Rabbit’s new album Pedestrian Version

More recently: The Airborne Toxic Event’s Such Hot Blood (only $5 at the time of this post!)

I’m not on top of music or anything so I just got both of these albums in July (which comes out to five months late for Frightened Rabbit and a month late for TATE).

I’m sure there are others that I’m not really thinking of that I might have actually gotten when they came out, but so far, these two really hit the “Nels” sweet spot for the kind of almost-poetry/high-school-poetry lyrics and mostly upbeat arrangements. I think I’m not supposed to like the Airborne Toxic Event because Pitchfork gave their first album a 1.6, but the same guy gave the Childish Gambino album a 1.6, so I think that’s really code for “Don’t tell anyone that I actually like this because it would ruin my street cred.”

Sure, a lot of the songs on Such Hot Blood are tailor made for performing in arenas, bombastic anthems that build and swell to something grandiose, but guess what, I like stuff like that.

Also, they did this (an allusion to How I Met Your Mother):

So, I mean, come on.

It’s rare, very rare indeed, that I actually like all the songs on any given album and can just listen to the album straight through without making a playlist to filter out the lower quality songs. Even those songs on Such Hot Blood are not bad. I’d say ‘True Love’ is my least favorite, but the pseudo-folk-Trampled-By-Turtles thing makes up for the fairly grating chorus and the annoying number of times he says “Cause it’s true love.” ‘The Fifth Day’ gets a little self-involved and over-orchestrated in it’s 6-minute playing time, but the beginning build-up feel so raw and genuine that again, it makes up for my minor quibbles with the middle part of the song.

Now, as for Frightened Rabbit, I feel like their The Midnight Organ Fight and The Winter of Mixed Drinks while both brilliantly titled albums were not wholly consistent in their quality (don’t get me wrong, they’re still really good). (I haven’t heard Sing The Greys or the songs on the EPs, so I can’t speak to that) But Pedestrian Verse is so good that I actually looked up their tour schedule and pretty much immediately bought tickets for their Lollapalooza after show. I go to live concerts even less than I buy music (read: irrationally cheap), so I’m not sure that there’s anything that could speak more highly of an album.


Scifi Is The New Black (Summer 2013 Movie Preview)


In reading the Redeye Summer Movie Preview, I noticed that SciFi movies are kind of taking over. Now, granted, I filtered the two page spread by movies that I actually want to see, which means that the list is obviously going to be skewed toward sf-nal stuff… but if you look at the entire list, I think you’ll agree that I’ve got most of the movies that will be worth seeing in the following list:

The Great Gatsby
Much Ado About Nothing
The Lone Ranger
The East
Star Trek Into Darkness
After Earth
Man of Steel
World War Z
Pacific Rim
The Wolverine
The World’s End

The first four are certainly not Scifi (though I’m not entirely sure about The East, hence my putting it right before the SF part of the list starts). Let me clear the decks a bit by just saying that I think this is one of the most packed summers in terms of movies that I really, really want to see. There’s 12 right there. And I’m having a hard time deciding which of those I want to see most.

So, as much as I love Joss Whedon, and while Baz Luhrmann is cool and fun, and Johnny Depp will probably make The Lone Ranger worth seeing… The movie I’ll be most excited to see will almost certainly come from the last 75% of the above list. And while the title of the post makes it seem like it’s going to be about how Scifi is taking over (and maybe it still will be), I am really just going to attempt to decide for myself which one I am most psyched to see… Starting with…
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