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April 25, 2011

Shorties (Stream the New Fleet Foxes Album, Casting TV's A Visit fron the Goon Squad, and more)

NPR is streaming the new Fleet Foxes album, Helplessness Blues (out May 3rd).

Flavorwire shares its dream casting of the television adaptation of Jennifer Egan's novel A Visit from the Goon Squad.

NPR is streaming the new Antlers album, Burst Apart (out May 10th).

Salon reviews Arthur Phillips' new novel, The Tragedy of Arthur.

This is a novel about authorship -- real, false and contested -- yet it's far from the sort of arch and arid exercise in formalist tail-swallowing that most people think of when they refer to "postmodern tricks." The novel is, indeed, a tragedy of authorship, but it is also the story of a man whose self-inflicted, tragicomic woes are as affecting and wincingly believable as those endured by the hero of any conventional fiction. That Arthur's spectacular crash-and-burn comes nestled in a web of ingenious and very funny literary allusions only makes it that much more of a treat.

The Guardian profiles Braids.

The four make music that has the sort of dynamism and scope to justify a word like "sculptural": tracks build around looped guitar lines and drones, punctuated by delicious shivers of noise that scurry across the soundscape and fade. All four sing and play several instruments but the band is fronted by the gawkily beautiful 21-year-old Standell-Preston whose voice slips from exquisite sweetness to Bjork-like yelps. With her enormous eyes and heart-shaped face she looks like an illustration in a children's book, which somehow makes even more delightful the fact that the lyrics are, as she puts it, so "dirty".

At Willamette Week, singer-songwriter John Vanderslice lists his five favorite podcasts.

Z on TV examines the innovative use of music in the HBO series Treme.

Whereas Fox's "Glee" alternately mimics and postmodernly mocks the traditional Broadway stage musical in all its excess and artifice, "Treme" seamlessly integrates in-club and staged-for-TV musical performances as a core element in the look, feel, sound and sense of the show — what the film critics would call mise-en-scene.

">Pitchfork interviews Merrill Garbus of tUNe-YarDs about her new album, w h o k i l l.

Pitchfork: My impression is that on this record, there are more issues and perhaps social concern swirled in. Maybe some of the songs are written a little more in character than on BiRd-BrAiNs?

MG: I think BiRd-BrAiNs was a bit more obscured. The connection with my personal experience of social issues and all of these things that I learned about so well in liberal arts college-- injustice or globalization or neocolonialism-- are still a part of my consciousness. I don't mean to write them off. These are things I've been thinking about since my early twenties and I can't get rid of them. They come from these places of having a personal experience but also seeing myself, like, "What a whiner, to be lost in a breakup or a rejection or my own head at a time when this is going on the world."

The Louisville Courier-Journal profiles author Kyle Minor, who talks about his novel-in-progress.

"In some senses, it's a novel of manners about people from the South who are operating on the terms of the South, but they're in Haiti, and they don't necessarily understand the implications of their presence or the things they're doing there, to themselves or to others," he said. "Thematically, my work has been preoccupied with the distance between the story that people have been telling themselves about their life, or the perceived story of their life that they operate out of, and then the truer thing that's actually happening daily in front of their noses."

PopMatters interviews J Mascis.

Slate examines why David Foster Wallace has such devoted fans.

Paste lists 23 band names inspired by literature.

The Park Slope Patch interviews cartoonist Adrian Tomine.

Drowned in Sound interviews Okkervil River frontman Will Sheff.

DiS: Have you ever written in any other forms, like prose, or for the stage?

WS: I've always written prose and poetry alongside lyrics, but it was never a priority to put it out there. It would definitely be fun to do that sometime. So far, the biggest piece of prose I've had published was this 'Viking Saga' piece I wrote for McSweeney's, kind of re-writing the history of Norwegian Black Metal in the form of a Norse saga. It was a sort of oblique and hard-to-read piece that was actually originally twice as long and they made me edit half of the thing out. I did like their edit, but it would be fun to publish the whole thing one day. Eventually I'm sure I'll put some non-lyric writing out there, but it's not a priority at the moment.

Margaret Drabble discusses her new story collection, A Day in the Life of a Smiling Woman, with Weekend Edition.

Drowned in Sound lists the best music videos from the first quarter of 2011.

Dan Barry talks to Weekend Edition about his new book, Bottom Of The 33rd: Hope, Redemption And Baseball's Longest Game.

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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