"Merritt's Musical Memories" Now Published

If you haven't had a chance to see the two night run of The Magnetic Fields' 50 Song Memoir, go. It's a concert experience unlike just about any other that you'll have. The 50 songs are played sequentially over two nights with interpolations from the autobiographer and subject of the album, Stephin Merritt. In true Merritt-ese, these added bits seem culled from André Breton's long lost book of observational humor. 

I got a chance back in the spring of 2017 and started thinking about how we construct ourselves in songs, the ways in which "indie" is its own construction of a construction, and how "confessional" songwriting is its own mask. If that seems a bit in the weeds or convoluted, I spend a lot more time parsing it out in "Merritt's Musical Memories: The Magnetic Fields’ 50 Song Memoir and Autobiography" now published online, for free, from Response, the journal of the Mid-Atlantic Popular & American Culture Association.

Don't worry, it only sticks its toe into narrative theory. Think of it more as an explainer for the record. I included a lot of material from the live show to try and give the reader the experience of being there for both nights. It's not the same thing as being there, of course, but for a record that took on such a theatrical dimension as this one, following along with the staging is important. 

So, check it out. Hope you like it, and feel free to shoot me any feedback that you may have here or on Twitter (which I recently joined) @soidistant.

Friday Streams -- June 1, 2018

Friday Streams -- May 11, 2018

New Releases:

Beach House - 7

A decade plus into their career, Beach House releases, guess what, their seventh album.

Mark Kozelek - Mark Kozelek

Mark Kozelek continues his unending quest to narrate his entire life in song in Mark Kozelek - Mark Kozelek

Leon Bridges - Good Thing

Off the Radar

Frightened Rabbit - Midnight Organ Fight

The ordeal around Scott Hutchinson's disappearance has been harrowing. Midnight Organ Fight was a troubled and vulnerable album, 11 years later, the nerve is still close to the skin.

Friday Streams -- April 27, 2018

This week's releases feature two progressive women doing what they do best.

New Releases
Janelle Monáe - Dirty Computer

Grouper - Grid of Points

Sigur Rós - Route One

Okkervil River - In the Rainbow Rain

Off the Radar
Dan Penn - Nobody's Fool

Friday Streams -- April 6, 2018

Friday Streams -- March 23, 2018

New Releases
Jack White - Boarding House Reach

Guided by Voices - Space Gun

The Messthetics - The Messthetics

A new band from Joe Lally and Brendan Canty, the rhythm section of Fugazi.

Dungen & Woods - Myths 003

Because we weren't around last weekend, check out this record from a collab between Swedish psychers and US psychers