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January 18, 2008


Yo La Tengo's Ira Kaplan talks to the Memphis Commercial Appeal.

In fact, a total appreciation for pop music in all its many forms plays a big part in Yo La Tengo's approach to its own songs. "I think our band, for better or for worse, is really close to who we are as people," says Kaplan. "And one thing we try not to shy away from is letting parts of our personality enter into the music. I can understand why someone would think that being a big music fan would be something you'd want to keep out of the (original) songs you write, but we try to not approach it that way. But rather allow it to enter the music we write in a creative, intelligent way."

The New York Times examines the city's curious world of book recycling.

Even in better days than these for books, the economy of publishing was bloated, based on guesswork, mercurial taste and the talents of people whose keenest interests rarely included making money. Book recycling in Manhattan is just the opposite, a perfectly efficient system with no fat at all: So many discarded books go from someone’s garbage to a scavenger to a bookseller and, often enough, land gently in someone else’s home. Feel guilty, if you must, for never finishing Tony Judt’s “Postwar: A History of Europe since 1945”; but don’t feel guilty for chucking it. It will most likely live to haunt someone else’s bedside table. It will find a new home.

Sons and Daughters guitarist Scott Paterson talks to the Irish Independent about the band's new album, This Gift.

"It's a more pop-oriented album than the last one," Paterson says. "Not nearly as dark as The Repulsion Box. When we started writing songs for this album we found that a year's solid touring meant The Repulsion Box's moods were seeping into the new material and we didn't like that. It just felt like more of the same." offers a streaming "Indie to Go" music sampler.

Popmatters lists the best television shows of 2007.

The Wall Street Journal lists Asia's best books of 2007.

The St. Paul Pioneer Press lists five bands to watch in 2008.

Minnesota Public Radio's The Current features Bon Iver with an interview and in-studio performance.

Baby Got Books interviews Rob Sheffield, author of Love Is a Mixtape.

BGB: I recently attended a funeral for a friend. At a gathering afterward, a mix CD of some of his favorite songs was handed out, which turned out to be a fantastic idea and got everyone sharing stories. Why do you think that music is able to create such intense memories/bonds between those that share it?

Rob Sheffield: I’m sorry about your friend. It is amazing how deeply music connects to the memories of specific people in specific times and places. It’s funny, I was just up in Boston visiting my parents and we were sitting around the fire and my mom made me sing the old Irish song “Bold Thady Quill,” just like she does almost every time I’m there, because that song reminds her of my grandmother from County Kerry. No matter how old people are, or where they come from, the music they loved is something I remember, and that’s the key that puts me in touch with their spirit.

The Futurist recaps the WOXY Lounge Act performance by the Muggabears with a couple of in-studio mp3s.

The Guardian's film blog offers a podcast interview with the Coen brothers.

The Sun profiles Black Mountain.

While it’s clear they have a handy line in monster riffs, none better than on seriously rocking opener Stormy High, there are nods to campfire folk, Floydian prog rock and the lonesome moans of fellow countryman Neil Young.

Young Galaxy's Stephen Ramsay talks to the Montreal Mirror.

“I was just trying to vent some frustration,” he says, admitting that he’d recently read all the critics’ year-end best-ofs, most of which didn’t list Young Galaxy. “First and foremost, I’m a music fan, and I don’t know what’s happened in the last few years, but every single band that’s been held at the highest esteem is super obtuse—really clever bands that don’t make any attempt to connect emotionally with their audience." reports that Neko Case will lend her voice to an Aqua Teen Hunger Force episode.

Case won't be lending her pipes to any anthropomorphic take-out containers, though. In a casting call as half-baked and absurd as anything in this Adult Swim hit, Case will play Chrysanthemum, a bewitching siren - which basically looks exactly like Case if she were a member of the Polyphonic-Spree - who crashes at the Aqua Teen pad.

Esquire named Austin's Mohawk the best bar in the country (it's one of my favorites, having hosted two Hot Freaks parties and a third to come this March).

At Aquarium Drunkard, Drive-By Trucker Patterson Hood offers a personal tour of Athens, Georgia.

The Chicago Tribune gives the Persepolis film 3 1/2 stars.

Just by giving the characters warm, mobile faces and expressive voices (Satrapi herself is voiced by different people at different ages; veteran actors Catherine Deneuve and Simon Abkarian voice her parents), Satrapi and her writing/directing partner, French animator/artist Vincent Paronnaud, expand the sense of Satrapi's world significantly. At the same time, without significantly changing the books' content, they bring in a wealth of emotional tones--particularly a playful, wry humor.

Satrapi talks to Minnesota Public Radio about film adaptations of comics.

Satrapi stresses that a comic book is not a storyboard for a movie.

"When you read a comic book you know, you as a reader are very active because the movement between two frames, you have to do it yourself," Satrapi says. "When I am making a movie, the viewer is absolutely passive. They are here one and a half hours, so you have to think about everything. You cannot lean on your viewer. When you make a comic you can lean actually on the reader to make the work for you."

Sharon Jones talks to the Tampa Tribune.

"We have been working to be heard," Jones says. "This is the real R&B, funk and soul. Right now, doors are opening for me and the Dap-Kings. We're looking forward to just putting out more good music."

The Times Online lists the 50 biggest movies of 2008.

Drowned in Sound interviews Mark Oliver Everett of Eels.

At NPR's All Things Considered, Alan Cheuse reviews the new novels by Stephen King and John Grisham, and predicts that both will be bestsellers.

Kimya Dawson talks to NPR's Bryant Park Project about how her songs ended up on the Juno soundtrack.

also at Largehearted Boy:

2007 online music lists
Daily Downloads
Try It Before You Buy It (mp3s and full album streams from this week's CD releases)
this week's CD releases


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