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January 23, 2006


One of my favorite online review sites, Erasing Clouds, has made its 2005 best-of lists for film and music available.

Popmatters lists the tribulations facing a music completist.

Stylus takes "an obvious look at ABBA."

I mentioned when the SXSW mp3 blog, See You In The Pit, started up for 2006, check back daily for band write-ups and plenty of mp3's from scheduled bands.

AskMetafilter members offer "great Australian novel" suggestions.

Posterwire is the "movie poster weblog."

La Blogotheque interviews Swedish singer-songwriter Jose Gonzales.

How do you manage the massive sudden media exposure you are getting ?

I had a similar situation in Sweden two years ago. This time it is a lot bigger, but at the same time there are a lot more good people around me I can trust and talk to, who manage all the mails, calls etc... It is still a bit scary though.

Robert Pollard talks to his hometown Dayton Daily Herald about his post-Guided By Voices career.

"I will actually be releasing five albums this year, but I've been keeping a pace of like four or so," Pollard said. "I want to slow that down a little bit. The collaborations are getting to be kind of pressurized, like, 'Ah, now I've got to figure out how to match lyrics and melodies up with this music.' Sometimes it's tough, and sometimes it's not, but every time I finish it I'm always happy because it was a challenge and it was a good exercise."

Pollard is also profiled and interviewed by the Chicago Tribune's Greg Kot.

When punk came barging through the door a few years later, "I thought it was complete noise," he says. "Then Devo [from nearby Akron] happened, and at first they scared me, but in a good way. I became religiously devoted to that band. I was in college listening to Devo and Genesis at the same time, and a lot of my friends could not understand that duality. How could I like both? To me they were similar: creative, inventive, weird but also melodic. The idea that you didn't have to be a classically trained musician to write great songs, complicated songs, really turned my head around."

Sleater-Kinney's Carrie Brownstein talks to the Sydney Morning Herald.

"In the US, things are broken down to us, things are simplified into 'You're either with us or you're against us'. And really, what people feel is murkiness and confusion. So this record, while not being outwardly political, is definitely a reflection on political times."

Business Week profiles Amoeba Records.

Hard-Fi's Richard Archer talks to the Sun about having the #1 UK album this week.

"We always knew this record wasn’t going to go straight in at the top of the charts and its sales would be more gradual – but I never believed it would actually get to No1.

"For us it was always about reaching the ordinary people out there, rather than those who are really into their music, and sometimes those people are hard to find."

Singer-songwriter Isobel Campbell talks to the daily Scotsman about working with Mark Lanegan.

"He was on tour a lot and sometimes he'd just disappear off the planet for a while and I'd think this record isn't gonna happen," says Campbell. "I said to [Belle & Sebastian bassist] Bobby Kildea, 'I think I've found my Lee Hazlewood, but I think I might have lost him again.' But I would never expect to tie him down or anything."

The end result was worth the wait, for the seamless blend of their exquisitely contrasting voices alone. "There's a real strong chemistry between us," she says. "It's quite an intimate record. It sounds like we were in the same room even though we were both off doing our own things."

Time lists "5 voices you need to hear:"

Ryan Adams
Chan Marshall
Jenny Lewis
Sarah Harmer
Ray Davies

The Arizona Republic profiles local vinyl record collectors.

Stereophile mourns the loss of local independent record stores.

Knobtweakers is offering a "best of 2005" downloadable mix CD.

Arthur Sucks explains "how to get non-RIAA music like a pro" (legally).

The Guardian lists the monetary value of first editions (in very good condition) of their top 100 books.

The Beast lists their 50 most loathsome people in America in 2005.

The Robert Pollard Pollard Fan Fiction contest ends at midnight tonight, get your entries in today for a chance to win.


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