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July 15, 2010

Shorties (She and Him, China Mieville, and more)

She and Him's M. Ward and Zooey Deschanel list their favorite California songs at Pop & Hiss.

The A.V. Club interviews China Mieville about his new novel, Kraken.

The Millions profiles the writing of Aimee Bender.

Band of Horses keyboardist Ryan Monroe discusses the band's success with Gimme Noise.

The Telegraph gets summer reading suggestions from authors and literary critics.

The San Francisco Chronicle profiles Built to Spill.

It has been nearly 20 years since he founded Built to Spill, and after seven critically successful studio albums, a handful of EPs, a solo blues album, countless collaborations and thousands of miles clocked touring around the world, Martsch continues to wear a measured temperament and a low-key frankness regarding his place in indie rock. And at a time when it is fashionable (and profitable) for their mid-'90s alt-rock peers like Pavement, Soundgarden and Sunny Day Real Estate to reunite, the members of Built to Spill continue to weather the trends of the industry and the tastes of pop aficionados without shooting to the top of the charts or tailspinning into obscurity.

Gawker lists 10 party songs it never wants to hear again.

Author Adam Mansbach shares a music playlist with Paper Cuts.

We Listen For You breaks down Pitchfork's 2010 "best new music" picks.

Back to the World is a fantastic new collaborative culture blog from Carl Wilson, Margaux Williamson, and Chris Randle.

Buzzgrinder is tracking down and sharing dates for the upcoming Guided By Voices reunion tour.

At Brick, Sean Michaels delves into UX, the secret Parisian underground society.

The Detroit News profiles Sleigh Bells.

The Brooklyn noise-pop duo has made quite a racket this year with its debut album "Treats." The band's sound is an eardrum-rattling cocktail of heavy metal guitars, sound barrier-pushing break beats and electronic hand claps. Grounding the sound -- or at least shifting it away from aggro dude territory -- are singer Alexis Krauss' tender, ethereal vocals. Put it this way: If Andrew WK's little sister started a band, it might sound like Sleigh Bells.

The trailer for It's Kind of a Funny Story has been released.

Read Ned Vizzini's Largehearted Boy Book Notes playlist/essay for the original novel.

PopMatters interviews Stuart McLamb of the Love Language.

KCRW's Bookworm interviews author Aimee Bender today.

The Detroit Free Press interviews Mavis Staples about her new album (produced by Wilco's Jeff Tweedy).

BBC News examines the current state of the concept album.

The Guardian Science Blog examines the use of comics and graphic novels as communication tools for the medical profession.

The Music Alliance Pact has posted its July selections, and features 33 music bloggers from 33 countries each championing a song from their homeland.

Opening Sentences is a website devoted to fiction's greatest opening sentences, both classic and newly published.

AfterEllen interviews Margaret Cho about her forthcoming music album.

NPR recommends summer's best science books.

Some "best music of 2010 (so far) lists:

All Songs Considered (great cover songs)
The Number of the Blog (best metal albums)
Spin (top albums)
State (top albums)
Style Mode (best albums)

Win the 50th anniversary edition of Harper Lee's classic novel To Kill a Mockingbird and a DVD of the film in this week's Largehearted Boy contest.

Follow me on Twitter and Stumbleupon for links (updated throughout the day) that don't make the daily "Shorties" columns.

also at Largehearted Boy:

previous Shorties posts (daily links from the worlds of music, literature, and pop culture)

Atomic Books Comics Preview (highlights of the week's comics & graphic novel releases)
daily mp3 downloads
Largehearted Word (highlights of the week's book releases)
Try It Before You Buy It (mp3s and full album streams from this week's CD releases)
weekly music & DVD release lists

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