Sometimes I imagine sound as a spectrum with music as one limit and silence the other. Everything else – conversation, rural and urban ambiance, leaf blowers – exist somewhere in between.
To exist – to hear – exclusively at both limits might be bliss. Or suffocatingly lonely. But we ingest the full spectrum, which I suppose makes every sound an amalgamation of music and silence.
Theoretically, there is no such thing as silence, right? Every sound, even perceived silence, roars as compared to a smaller resonance or heightened listener. Should I have been a physicist? Should I smoke less weed?
Best for last:
I was in the bookstore today and it seemed each author on my list defined classification. Would Sebastian Junger (nods to D-man) be shelved in Philosophy or Journalism? Are the stories of Norman Maclean considered Autobiographical or that smoky Non-fictional style that turns my pages?
My grandfather was frustrated by the ambiguity, I was charmed.
Good music can sometimes share the same categorical equivocation and increasingly I value artists that headbang and headbutt cataloguing. Here, I think, are two:
Oxymorrons are genre-bending brothers from Brooklyn, whose most popular song, Hello Me, plays like a reincarnation of DeVotchKa and Kid Cudi.
Fantastic Negrito (makes for an an interesting, if not self-aggrandizing, read) “is black roots music for everyone, Blues with a punk attitude from Oakland.” His sound in soulful and spiced with heavy doses of rasp and rad.
I found some Junger in Northeast Maritime. Who knew?
Play it loud. Keep it weird.
I bought a girl a rose this weekend. It was on impulse, a last-minute apology, a chance to stick out from the other glassy eyed guys offering her shots. It was also her birthday.
I gave her the rose, any edge of embarrassment blunted by the requisite surge of shots I slugged before the Uber. She inhaled, smiled, thanked. We talked, she laughed, I drank.
The night sped and the bar surged around us. Around her. But she remained motionless, rose gripped in one hand, clutch in the other. Friends and strangers extended dancing hands and clouded drinks, but she reproached all comers.
Behind pretty eyes, hesitation scintillated. The ugly trio of self-pessimism: doubt, fear and loathing guarded her every movement. Those bastards seep through even the heaviest masks of makeup.
Thirty minutes later she was gone. What she’s looking for I do not know, but it won’t be wrought from the sweet alchemy of another night, another bar, another round. This, at least, we have in common.
As my roommate and I made to leave, I saw the rose, slightly battered and entirely forgotten on the sticky bar top. I took it with me and gave it to the Mexican girl working the midnight shift at the burger joint down the road. She tucked it behind her ear.
It’s Saturday and I’ve finished my first few days at a new job. Contrary to expectations, I won’t castigate the corporate world and evangelize about the open road. I actually kind of enjoyed clocking into the office.
That being said.. working the 9-5 is so safe, stable. Take some risks this weekend. Do something out of character. Make trouble.
What people are really looking for in young artists is originality. I think that they are more interested in that kind of creative energy than in technical polish. It’s really about creating something that is totally mind blowing and unique and that represents you.
– Vincenzo Natali (from Breaking In)
Cue the music!