Said the Gramophone - image by Danny Zabbal
by Sean
Floating diver

Wolf Alice - "Freazy". One of my favourite movements is the hopeful reach. You on a kitchen chair, tippy-toes, straining to grasp the vase. You on all fours, under the bed, dreaming of that distant box of picture frames. You and an apple tree, you and Thanksgiving's bowl of yams, you and your lover as their train leaves the station. The hopeful reach is nicer than the hopeless reach, nicer than the blind fumble. I am not sure it is satisfying but it is nice. It is nice to watch: see the boy and his hopeful reaching, see the girl and her hopeful reaching, see the Aegean nation reaching for that which it cannot quite grasp. [buy]

(photo source lost)

by Emma

Kiiara - "Gold"

Here's a pretty perfect glitchy song by a 20-year-old hardware store clerk from Illinois about fooling around with someone's brother because they've fucked with you, about needing to fuck them back. I can't think of another song I've heard in a long, long time that's walked the angry-sexy line this full-engagingly; there's something so satisfying about that balance, about the weird alchemy this song pulls off. The structure of "Gold" is so familiar and so new at the same time - you feel like you're going to know the chorus in your bones, on the way to it, and then you get there and it's its own new language, nothing you've ever heard before, nothing you could've imagined. Plus if Kiiara saying she's going to "bite your fillings out" doesn't seem like the hottest weirdest thing you've ever heard then I'm not sure what to tell you. This song feels like pure electrical current; hums through you head-to-toe, too dangerous to grasp bare-handed. A gorgeous dark mutation of some more boring basic song-of-the-summer gene. Uneasy balance, pulled-taut bassline, tight rise and fall controlled like only something ready to spin out at any moment can be. Hard bounce, low hum, late-night, buzzing. Ready to snap back any second.

by Mitz

Mike Wallace - "Natural High" [Buy or here]

The Smoking Trees - "Trips" [Pre-order]-album will be out on July 10th on Ample Play

Once in a while, I meet people who are from a SNL skit or a B-comdey movie. This Asian guy asked me if I was Korean or Japanese at metro. I answered Im Japanese and he kept counting numbers in Japanese, "ichi, ni, san, shi..." Very friendly but super weird dude who was carrying spicey Chinese soup stock to his friend's restaurant downtown. I listened to count number in Japanese for about 4 minutes til the metro came. He is natural high all the time. Natural SNL skit guy who is always on a trip.

Do you remember the viral video of "What kind of Asian are you?" ? In fact, a lot of Asians ask each other that question all the time!!

I was in Chinatown cafe ordering some pastries and one waitress came up to me and asked me, "Are you Korean or Japanese?" I answered "Im Japanese." She went back to the counter and her co-worker was waiting. She told her and they giggled and one girl did a little gesture of "Yes!" and other waitress was "oh dang!" Then they noticed I was witnessing their "bet." They had "oh shit! he is looking at us! don't look now!" moment. I loled and they loled.

After that, I went home on my bike with a 20kg of rice bag on the back busket of my bike. When I got home, I noticed there was little rip in a rice bag and rice was coming out little by little. There was little trace of rice from Chinatown to my house, just in case, if I get lost. I loled alone and then I realized I was the SNL skit guy. LOL!

by Jeff

basket of mussels on the water

Grass Widow - "Shadow"

Picking wild mussels off the rocks is about touch. Go down when the tide is out and stick your hands under the water. Feel around the sides of the rocks crowned by strands of yellow seaweed. Think raccoon. As you rummage around you'll be able distinguish the sharp, curved edge of the shell from the smooth rock it's clinging to.

When you think you found one give it an exploratory tug; if it holds on to the rocks you've got one. If it's small just leave it to keep growing, but if it's a good size, tug it until it comes loose. Give it a quick look and if it isn't dead throw it in the bucket. Later, steam them and serve with melted butter, nothing else.

It takes a bit of courage to crouch down in the ocean and stick your hands somewhere you can't see them, to work by touch alone, unaided by sight. But after you find a few mussels you'll get into the calming rhythm of gathering. Your hands will feel the contours of the rocks and the cold weight of water while you gaze at the glittering shoreline and the birds in the sky.


(photo of mussel picking by Spike)

by Sean

The Winter Passing - "Fruits of Gloom". Sometimes I get a perverse pleasure out of listening to a song at the inopportune time. As you might infer from the performer's name, "Fruits of Gloom" is better suited to the North American months of November, December, January or February. It is a melancholy rock'n'roll of desolate pavement, bare trees, harsh winds. It is alone in a vast city, emo roaring in headphones. It is Pixies and Jimmy Eat World; it is the 90s, revived, and all of us are lonely 20-year-olds. So I listen to it in late June, in my thirties, in sunshine, and it becomes a source of such strength. Like being able to see the top and bottom of a waterfall from a single vantage point. Like touching the bottom of a lake. There are so many miles of minutes from winter to summer, from sorrow to joy, but in a way each slope is the same; travelling in either direction, you can feel the wind in your hair. [bandcamp / thanks hamza]

by Emma

Courtney Barnett - "Depreston"

Saturday hangover. Thick rain against the windows. Fuck up the coffee, it's fine. Bite your tongue and it's fine. Dryer doing its sputter, downstairs Sam plays some record, plugs the vacuum in and the pile of dishes slung together shudder, sings. You make some small, sad gesture; day leans out of reach like, hey, whoa. And can you blame it? You're lucky, but aren't you forgetting something? Isn't there somewhere you're supposed to be?

[buy Sometimes I Sit and Think, and Sometimes I Just Sit]

by Mitz

Douji Morita - "Bokutachi no Shippai"

Vivian Maier
Henry Darger
Nick Drake too.

well not really like them, in terms of posthumous fame, Morita is still alive but she never really performed or showed her face in public with her shades off. By the 80's, she retired from writing music. But there is something beautiful about it. Not like salmon, I burned this morning. I ate too much ice cream instead and I have a headache. Her voice will help me.

[Buy] I'm so sorry it's hard to get outside of Japan. I will update asap if I find somewhere you can buy her mp3's. or physical copies since amazon Japan doesn't ship outside of Japan.