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May 7, 2007


My list of 2007 Coachella music festival downloads has been posted, and will be updated daily.

Deaf Indie Elephants interviews Jeremy Barnes of A Hawk and a Hacksaw.

The Guardian examines homages and parodies of Herge's Tintin comics.

Six years ago in Belgium - where Tintin is essentially a national hero - three people were arrested for producing and selling the sex-holiday romp Tintin in Thailand. Yet the unofficial Tintins have also become something of a niche speciality: some rare, limited-edition works can sell for hundreds of pounds. To their fans, they are a kind of tribute to Hergé.

The New York Daily News previews four summer music festivals with a fashion spread featuring participating bands.

Five Chapters is serializing Ben Dolnick's "Roommates" this week.

The new issue of the New Yorker features a short story, "Harwell Senior," by Zadie Smith.

Singer-songwriter Juana Molina talks to Stylus.

When she mows down my opinions about the sense of environment on her records, she explains, “I hope it comes from me.” Minutes later, she talks about her music like it has its own impenetrable biology: “The sound tells me its behavior and what to do with it.” For a foofy, self-mystifying statement, it’s absolutely on-point; her music’s queerest paradox is that it feels incredibly personal, but like it would grow on its own if she left the room. Plants need watering. Think of it that way.

Popmatters interviews Noisettes lead singer Shingai Shoniwa.

Is music more of a product today, or seen as something that can save your life?

I think of the Ramones when I think of music that can save your life, but I’m not so sure about a band like Fall Out Boy who appears to make music in vein or that, at least, doesn’t sound like something they would die for. Maybe they do make that kind of music, but their hits don’t seem to conjure up that kind of feeling. And because nobody has time to listen to every bloody band out there I just have to move on.

Pitchfork interviews Wilco frontman Jeff Tweedy.

Pitchfork: How important is, say, nostalgia when you're sitting down writing into the band and into recording?

Jeff Tweedy: There's nothing nostalgic about Wilco. There's nothing nostalgic about anything. I don't find it to be important at all. I would think that what we're talking about and what I'm really describing is more being honest with yourself about language and using it to say who you are. Each musician has to kind of make that contribution to a recording. I don't really think that it's about nostalgia.

Cracked lists the 15 best songs "totally about masturbation."

Harp has Greg Dulli reminisce about the albums of the Afghan Whigs.

Black Love (1996, Elektra): Following a grueling 1 1/2 year tour supporting Gentlemen, original Whigs drummer Steve Earle is shown the door while the other members wage their own battles with burnout. “I think Black Love is misunderstood, and I probably could have used a guiding hand on that because I kind of went a little nutty. I love the atmosphere of the record, the spookiness of it. We made it out in the woods in this little town called Woodinville, about 30 miles outside of Seattle, on a horse farm. There was lots of naked horse riding, mushroom taking, stuff like that.”

Torontoist interviews artist Scott McCloud.

Your approach to studying comics seems so optimistic about the future of the medium. What kind of things are cartoonists doing that you find innovative?

One of the nice things about comics in recent years is that the medium is going in many different directions simultaneously. For example, you have things like Alison Bechdel's Fun Home or the Jimmy Corrigan book by Chris Ware that are quite literarily ambitious. I think Art Spiegelman's Maus is probably the most celebrated example of that, he really kicked off this literary attitude about comics.

NPR's Weekend Edition interviews author Nicole Mones about her new novel, The Last Chinese Chef, and includes an excerpt from the book.

Southern Shelter is sharing mp3 downloads of the April 27th and 28th Drive-By Truckers performances.

see also:

this week's CD releases


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