>tried to protect a school’s name by not mentioning it in a sensitive article
>people in the comments section defending the school by revealing its name
what’s older than too old, or thinking that you’re too old?
trying to fly away without knowing how to fly
marijuanatacular taste on his gums
skin like butter
then turn back
it begins once more
and crispy bacon
sliced through with a fine knife
one egg, two yolks
one with blood, one almost done
refusing to mix
because he would
with his chicken
ending up someone’s ass
it doesnt comfort anyone
no one fought
a good fight
lasted longer than
the Six Day War
the same number of people
died in it
It became civil
territorial, farcical, seussical
over our former colonial powers
and how we once fought
in their name
Observing countries can only observe
they give aid
but not fight
but neither do we
Dead, reincarnated again
just to win the right
to be right.
FAV> ALBUM OF 2013: DEAFHEAVEN - SUNBATHER
Sunbather is the album that I always come back to in the end, this year. Very much like the other albums in this top 10, it feels like a home that I always look forward to come back to. Before this album, I hadn’t even known Deafheaven existed or that Sunbather turned out to be the epic monster that it is. Judging from the cover, you initially couldn’t tell much about what the band had in store for you, unless the record stores or the online music services did that categorization for you. But in the end, the record wowed me with its size, atmosphere, varying song styles, and the floating ambiences in between the hardest songs. For me it had everything: atmosphere, aggression, size, timidity, despair, optimism, beauty, immersion, ferocity, heart, technique, darkness, brightness etc. all hidden under a luminescent sea of noise and a reef of echoing guitars. It was all I needed, for awhile.
It is also, in my opinion, an album of which a lot of different people can enjoy. It can strike the hearts of hardcore kids and metalheads while also making indie kids and punk kids cry. Its an album that can be enjoyed simultaneously by the Pitchfork community and the Absolutepunk community and emerge out of this harmony a better record. Appreciation will always make a record sound better, especially if one shares it with others. It is a massive album in terms of its music: the atmosphere caused by the reverbing guitars and the drowned out screams, coupled with the dark ambient and noise interludes in between the “main” songs. It is an album that can be enjoyed by people who don’t normally listen to heavy music, much like how Swans’ The Seer captivated listeners of all kinds with its size and its unique ferocity back in 2012, winning many hearts and praise along the way.
Deafheaven will become a legendary band thanks to this record. 10 years from now, they would probably achieve the same kind of high that My Bloody Valentine reached, resonating in history as an incredible band with their own unique sound. This year, they have released my favourite album of 2013.
No. 5 Daft Punk - Random Access Memories
Random Access Memories is an incredibly produced album possessing one of the defining sounds of 2013, and an album which survived the incredible hype cycle put upon it by desperate EDM snobs looking for a justified savior of their static scene and the myth-eating media unscathed.
Overhyping anything has the possibility of ruining an object or an event’s element of surprise and the expectations of many. Over the course of the first half of 2013, partly fueled by the “dying” EDM scene, the highly anticipated fourth album from French electronica duo Daft Punk was almost the only thing that dominated the music media.
All their previous releases have all become staples of dance music and has inspired dozens upon dozens of DJs and artists. Some currently big DJ names have credited their work a lot to Daft Punk’s brand of robotic French house music. It would be no surprise if a release by the duo would garner so much attention. The growing EDM scene in America is (still) facing a dire crossroads due to the threat of musical stagnation and over commercialization. They needed a savior in their legendary figures, to bring them out of the slump and back into the game. This, and coupled with the Daft Punk myth being eaten ravenously by the public, helped fuel the memorable hype that was not necessary from the beginning.
But how much were people’s expectations being too much? Was it simply because the album’s marketing scheme was incredibly effective? Or was it because the receiving end was being gluttonous in eating the myth that is Daft Punk? Is a marginally biased music media responsible for the dashed anticipation of the people who expected no more than another record like Discovery? Was it worth the drive (or flight) to a remote Australian town just to hear the record being played for the first time, in public, without any sight from the band itself?
In all ways, yes it was, depending on what one expected from Daft Punk. Sure, Random Access Memories still retained elements of the old Daft Punk, as one can hear in Giorgio by Moroder or in Contact, but overall, the duo came out with a record that was entirely different. Their famously digital trademarks have been replaced by the high production value of analogue drums and instruments, as well as making Pharrell Williams the number one pop star of the year.
I was initially skeptical in terms of the album due to my dismissiveness in believing that the album would be the album of the century. But upon hearing the album itself, I was more than impressed. In fact, I loved it, and was actually obsessed with it myself for the first week or so. I could not believe they had pulled off something so great, just doing their own thing in the midst of very high expectations.
What annoyed me about the album was the certain excessive hype that surrounded it. For one, when Get Lucky’s radio edit came out, it was played on Australian mainstream radio every three songs for almost two weeks. Too much of a good thing is never great, but this excessive hype was made for by the actual album.
It is no wonder that Daft Punk are one of the most praised acts in music, because boy do they bring their game to the table!
no. 6. TWIABP&IANLATD - Whenever if Ever
Emo has so, so much potential to cross over to other audiences, especially into the indie scene. The problem with bands that carry this label with them is that they have to work harder in proving the music world that they are not what the supposedly negative and stereotypical image of emo is. If you think about it, songs about depression, crying, self harm, wearing black, heartbreak, misery, rejection or what have you exist in all realms of music. But whenever certain people are told to describe emo, these categories will definitely show up some time in their description, and spoken with a negative connotation. Out of all the sounds that exist in alternative rock, for me, emo bands have the biggest potential to cross over into the indie scene, because they act like a literal bridge between indie rock and hardcore. Bands have to work hard to stand out with their own sound.
Enter The World is a Beautiful Place and I Am No Longer Afraid to Die. It seems that my discovery of this band was an answer to my prayers. Emo now has the possibility to be appreciated on another level, by new audiences.
For the record, I have never heard a band quite like them, I have never heard of a band whose sound is similar to that of Broken Social Scene and Thursday at the same time. Its as if Kevin Drew (BSS) started crying when he sang and then dragging his band’s music down with his moods. But I am incredibly joyed to hear a band like this, because they seemed to fulfill almost every criteria I set 4 years ago about being the perfect emo band of the future: they had originality, they melded unpredictable sounds, they stayed true in their lyrics, of which is able to hit the hearts of even the most aged emo fan. The only minor drawback about this band is its insistent band name (because of the amount of energy you would have to spend referring to the band’s full name). But aside from this, I was almost reduced to tears when hearing this album for the first time because it had been what I’d hoped for.
The music and the lyrics blend so well and are delivered flawlessly. The vocalist sounds like a wimpier version of Thursday’s Geoff Rickly, but he delivers his words with almost the same intensity as Rickly does. Even the instrumentation harkens Thursday’s final efforts to blend in post-rock into their music. Instrumental opus “Ultimate Steve” would not feel out of place in an Explosions in the Sky album, as the buildup-turned-ending is able to remind one of EITS’s The Earth is Not a Cold Dead Place. “Gig Life” is sadder than a lot of other emo songs I have ever heard and I could actually feel for the subject that is being left behind. The words are shouted, whispered, screamed, sung directly into the listener’s heart, immediately feeling their pain.
The post-rock comparisons and the intense delivery of the music and the devastating lyrics places this band on a par with such post-hardcore emo legends such as Thursday or Cap’n Jazz. Their musical aesthetic is certainly reminiscent of 90s emo, which can be said to be a literal bridge between indie rock and hardcore music. The harking of the Braid, Hey Mercedes or any Kinsella-related sounds are very transparent in this album.
In a way, I guess that this album is the album which is closest to my heart this year. Music publications such as Consequence of Sound are already predicting the return of emo, and so am i. With a resurgence of bands like TWIABP, it looks like Emo will evolve beautifully from its caterpillar and cocoon states, into a butterfly of triumph.