Said the Gramophone - image by Neale McDavitt-van Fleet
by Mitz
(photo source) Fat White Family - "Is It Raining In Your Mouth" [Buy]

I was probably 10 or 11 years old. There was a park around the corner from my house that all the neighborhood kids played at. It felt like a 30 minute walk, but last time I was back there it only took me 5 minutes. My friend when we were kids, couldn't hold his poo even though it was only a 5 minute walk to my house or 4 minutes to his. He sat in a little bush and pooped. I handed him the smoothest leaf I could find as toilet paper (probably about 600 grit if it was a sandpaper). He had a nice poo and saved the day.

I used to have stomach problems all through childhood. Later in life, I found out it was probably because of my generalized anxiety. In the morning, I used to get a stomachache, so I would poo and felt better. Also after school, I used to get a stomachache and had to hold it the 15 min. walk home. There was a steep hill which made my holding poo power tougher and that's how I learned about gravity. There was no apple tree near by. Just me and my tummy and my poo in it. Every step was a challenge as I needed to walk slow to hold it in. But if I walked too slow my friends will notice something strange. So I had to walk average speed to avoid suspicion. I walked with my bum really tight like a synchronized swimmer before diving into the pool or a America's next top model on the runway. It might have looked a little strange, but oh well.

Once, I got home and my mom wasn't home so I had to wait. I sat in the garage, on the bricks. I thought a hard surface would help me hold my poo. I waited and waited but later I found out my mom was at dentist and it took longer than she expected and I don't blame her. I held my poo as long as possible but there was always a breaking point. I had no choice but poo somewhere. We had a little yard. I mean Japanese housing size yard with houses built really close to it. So I decided to go to our yard and release this demon inside of me. So I did. I finally let the dark side of me go, under the beautiful sunshine in the afternoon. Very peaceful. I could hear neighbour kids playing in the park distantly. War was over. But I realized there was nothing I could wipe with close by. Our yard didn't really have many plants at that time. So I looked around still in squatting position like a baseball catcher waiting for the perfect pitch. I found a clover. It was not a four leaf clover. That would make an epic 3 hours fantasy movie if I find it that time. I just found a sad looking 3 leaf clover. and I wiped my ass with it. I felt really magical. It felt like a 1200 grit automobile sanding paper. really really smooth like a fine sanding of samurai sword.

Then, I realized it was my hand. The clover was too small and my fingers were covered with my own poo. If I found four leaves clover, maybe it would have been a different result. Who knows.

The end.

by Mark Streeter

End of Summer

RP Boo - "Bang'n On King Dr."

All summer I've had a candle lit for my Chosen One, my self-ordained Summer Jam of 2015, waiting for the sign that it had caught fire, left deep scorch marks across the summer jam landscape. But now it is September and I must turn away from this internet-window, hope hardening into steely autumnal resolve. Time now for us to mourn, to bid farewell to the most fleeting summer we've ever known. Time now for us to do the work of remembering, of giving name to those second-tier jams that got away from us. I'll go first.

"Bang'n On King Dr." may not have burned as brightly as many of its peers, and yet we are all luckier for it having happened. It's a masterful execution of a staple footwork principle, taking a sample of tiny duration and repeating it endlessly so that it becomes a kind of texture, a strange and cool cluster of tones and timbres removed from their original context. The song seems to gather momentum effortlessly, verging almost on too-amped silliness, and it's surprising that so much forward motion is being generated by so few elements: the relentlessly repeating voice samples; the two dead-dry thudding bass notes that you won't even hear if you're listening to this on a laptop; the janky drum machine getting dialed up to 160 bpm. There's a supreme IDGAF approach to the production, seams showing everywhere -- you can literally hear how he is just shouting those street numbers into his MacBook's built-in microphone. It feels like it was made in five reckless minutes, a surge of irrepressible stoned enthusiasm captured in real time.

We don't have to stop drinking radlers just this second, but let's not lie to ourselves either. Soon it will be time to haul the cardigans from the closet, time for the new Beach House record to enter heavy rotation on coffee shop playlists, time to pin hopes to Jennifer Castle improbably winning the Polaris Prize. Summer's a dead raccoon on the sidewalk, having lived fast and died hard, not knowing any other way. We have "Bang'n on King Dr." so that we can remember it in all its hot and stinky glory.

Let us do the work of remembering. Let us not forget the names. Hit the comment button below and share a lost summer jam. Let us commiserate over having had it so good these past few months.

[buy]

by Sean

Low - "What Part Of Me". Spend twenty years honing your craft, studying your books, practicing your scales, running your course, writing your rhymes, hitting your ball, repeating your tenses, learning your tools, tracing your circles, swimming your laps, dancing your steps, loving your loved ones, sitting on your cushion, carrying your weight, and then listen to all that you will have.

[soundcloud / pre-order]

by Mitz

Tatsuro Yamashita - "Love Talkin'" [Buy]

Summer is almost over. I wish I was in a tropical climate like Indonesia. That brought back some memories with my friend, Mr. Warusu who is approx. 20 years older than me. I met him at Indonesian restaurant where I was washing dishes. Mr. Warusu came from Indonesia to work here, to give his family better life back home. He didn't speak English nor French but somehow we communicate with gestures.

Once, I asked him where I put some stuff. Mr.Warusu pointed downstairs with his index and middle finger but his thumb was out too so he looked like a gesture of holding a gun and pointing down, and he said, something like, "gangstas!" which translated to "downstairs." I miss him. hope he is well in Indonesia now.

by Mark Streeter

The Embarrassment

The Embarrassment - "Celebrity Art Party"

The Embarrassment - "Immigrant Song"

It's weird to think that nerds used to be outliers; that theirs was once an under-represented perspective, a different way of being in the world. Somehow it's not now; nerds have traded their Sweater Songs for Hash Pipes, become deadbeat dads in Wes Anderson movies, annexed huge swaths of the internet to create safe spaces for being mean, being right, taking revenge. It's depressing to think that those who once existed on the margins of popular culture now seem so keen on policing it. I wasted a lot of teenage years becoming intimately familiar with the Marvel Universe, not knowing this was the end game.

The Embarrassment are the kind of band made extinct by this shift, nerds who fashioned their own narrative and made their own fun, because no one was going to bring fun to Wichita for them. They toured a lot from 1980-1983 but released few recordings, just a couple of singles and an appearance on an early Sub Pop compilation (with Neo Boys and Jad Fair, among others). Of these, "Celebrity Art Party" is a breathtaking standout, bright and optimistic in its tone, with a manic, careening rhythm section that somehow never comes unglued, and lyrics that are sarcastic and critical without carrying any real menace (the dead-dumb rhyming of "Art Carney" with "Art Party" kills me every time).

The band was not long for this world, with two members departing for college in Boston (where they would form the more well-known Big Dipper, whose recent reunion was famously orchestrated by Tom Scharpling over a series of Best Show episodes). Their recordings, most of them unreleased, were finally compiled on CD in 1995, too soon to capitalize on the new wave revivalism of bands like Clap Your Hands Say Yeah and Arctic Monkeys, too late to grab the attention of bros who'd flipped out a year earlier to Crooked Rain, Crooked Rain even as it mocked them. One of the gems on the CD is a go-for-broke live version of "Immigrant Song," delivered with a goofy recklessness that acknowledges The Embarrassment couldn't possibly exist in the same realm as Zeppelin, while trashing the shit out of the song in a way that band never could. It's a window into a nerd-world we can't go back to, where irreverence did not seem so tyrannically cynical, and where freedom could be felt in not-belonging.


by Sean

MERNA - "The Calling". Can I get a volunteer? Can I get a volunteer? The role is a surprise but I can guarantee it will be worth it. I will guarantee you will not be disappointed. A volunteer! All I need is a volunteer! Are you out there? I'm looking for someone as ready as a dry match, as ready as a clear sheet of glass; ready to be broken, struck. Someone to start a fire, to cut someone up. But not literally. Not literally! Like I said - the role is a surprise. The role's a surprise, folks! I'm looking for a volunteer!

[executive produced by Ali Shaheed Muhammad / buy]

by Emma

Carly Rae Jepsen - "I Really Like You"

This post is late because I have been trying to figure out something halfway interesting to say about how this song makes me feel, and coming up consistently empty. The purest version of any colour; best of the teenage-downhill feelings, bright like the first internet, "pop" like "effervescent"- you'll listen and think these things without my input, which is why it's the most perfect version of itself. This song doesn't need anyone's dumb explanation; all it needs is a few minutes of your time, a second in the sunshine to show you what it's brighter than.

[buy E•MO•TION]