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September 10, 2007


The BBC News examines the plight of judges for the British literary Booker prize, who must read 100 novels in 100 days.

"It isn't just reading, but giving the novel space in your mind. If you watched five films in the same day, my thought is the fifth film wouldn't get the same treatment. If you read too many they crowd each other out."

Tiny Mix Tapes reviews the new Animal Collective album, Strawberry Jam.

It’s part Syd Barrett, part early Modest Mouse, a marriage of ’60s psych-pop and ’90s quasi-emo indie that results in some touching songs and some deplorable digressions. Like other Animal Collective albums, it’s a half-finished project that bears only a passing resemblance to its predecessors.

Pitchfork interviews Animal Collective's Noah Lennox (aka Panda Bear).

The September 17th issue of the New Yorker contains a new short story by Paul Theroux, "Mr. Bones."

Kevin and Anita Robinson of Viva Voce talk to Popmatters.

"I read something that Ahmet Ertugum, the legendary record guy, wrote. He slagged Tori Amos when she was getting really heady. He said, just because McDonalds sold a million hamburgers doesn’t mean they’re delicious. Just because you sold a million albums doesn’t mean they’re good. That’s true. People eat at McDonalds because it’s easy and it’s cheap. And that’s the same reason people buy Razorlight. It’s easy and it’s cheap. If they don’t know there’s Shins or Viva Voce albums to buy they’re just going to eat a Big Mac instead of a salad.”

This week, Five Chapters is serializing "Home," a short story by Ellen Litman.

KEXP features streaming in-studio performances from VHS or Beta (9:30 am pacific) and Okkervil River (3 pm pacific).

Slate remembers author Grace Paley.

Paley relies on aggression and verbal energy, rather than any orthodox technique, to carry the reader through a story. The world of her fiction—whether the Russian Jewish immigrant families of her youth or the Village radicals of her adulthood—is close, insular, hermetically sealed; the characters' emotional dramas take up all the air, and all the space on the page. It helps to read two or three stories at once, or, better yet, to read a collection from start to finish, in order. Though the stories aren't ostensibly "linked"—most don't share characters—together they read like an unfolding conversation among members of an extended, antagonistic family.

Cracked lists the 12 most ridiculous similes in rock and roll history.

The Blind Bookworm lists websites with free downloadable audiobooks.

The Washington Post's Express interviews MF Grimm about the hip hop artist's autobiographical graphic novel, Sentences: The Life of M.F. Grimm.

» EXPRESS: Why did you choose to tell your story in a graphic novel format?

» CAREY: I'd have to say the graphic novel chose me. But my reason for being in agreement with doing it is because it seemed like it was the appropriate way to come. [The graphic novel] was something that was never fully used in hip-hop.

The New York Times reviews Shauna Seliy's novel, When We Get There (one of my favorite books of the year).

With these stories of loss and migration, Seliy lyrically evokes Banning’s darker side, how the cloying small town can suffocate a free spirit. In Seliy’s hands, the stories told by Lucas’s elders become as singular and dangerous as the poorly covered mine shafts of the local landscape.

see also: Seliy's Largehearted Boy Book Notes essay for the novel

Matt Friedberger of the Fiery Furnaces talks to Billboard about the band's new album, Widow City.

"The music is supposed to tell the story as much as, or more than, the words do," he says. "The lyrics were written with, or by means of, ads at the back of design magazines from the early '70s, the cultural pages, if any, of local community minority or alternative lifestyle newspapers and depictions of grieving children using the aforementioned Ouija board."

NPR's Weekend Edition features an excerpt from Camille DeAngelis's new novel, Mary Modern.

Southern Shelter features an mp3 download of a recent live performance by Kindercore Records' King of Prussia.

also at Largehearted Boy:

2007 Lollapalooza downloads
this week's CD releases


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