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May 12, 2011

Shorties (Death Cab for Cutie, Martin Amis, and more)

Death Cab for Cutie guitarist Chris Walla talks to NOW Magazine about the band's forthcoming album, Codes And Keys (out May 31st).

Foyles profiles author Martin Amis.

The Georgia Straight profiles indie band LAKE.

It's fair to say the Washington indie rockers in LAKE are nature lovers. Throughout its latest album, the recently released Giving & Receiving, the Whidbey Island troupe praises the great outdoors while advising modern man not to miss out on the scenery. While some songs take a more serious eco-conscious bent, wispy numbers like “The Stars” suggest we take the time to gaze at the constellations instead of at our computer screens. “The stars up in the sky would never bat an eye, and never press ‘deny' for your friend request,” singer Ashley Eriksson sings atop tender electric piano.

BBC News wonders why there is so little literature that addresses the current economic downturn from a personal perspective.

On sale for $3.99 at Amazon MP3: Wavves' King of the Beach album.

Bookworm interviews Eileen Myles about her latest novel, Inferno.

Members of the National talks to Cincinnati CityBeat about their Ohio roots.

"It's in the ethos of what The National is,” Dessner says. "It's in there — that’s our family, that's how we grew up, it's part of our identity. We're nice guys from Ohio. I also think the early-'90s Rock scene in Ohio went into the identity of what the band is — bands like Guided by Voices and The Breeders. Especially for Matt and Scott, who went to college together (at UC) and who were seeing bands at Sudsy's and hanging out on the scene all those years and having a college band. We definitely come out of an Ohio Rock tradition."

Vulture interviews author Jennifer Egan.

But you do feel like there is a perception about women’s writing that needs changing?

I do. For me, the big book in which I felt like I changed my goals — or at least broadened them to an extent where it felt like a change of kind rather than degree — was [my 2001 novel] Look at Me. I just felt like I didn’t have a clear model anymore. I had lots of questions about whether I would be allowed to do it and whether I would look stupid for trying. I don’t know for sure that it had to do with being female, but I feel like it might have a bit. So I would always hope that women would take all the big chances. Again, back to my ridiculous remarks, that really is what I was trying to get to. Just think big — really. Just try it. I think there are ways in which we censor ourselves, that's the most dangerous kind of censorship — that’s how hegemony works. That’s the kind of thing I'd want women not to feel. Again, I don't know for sure that they do feel it. I can say personally that I believe I did.

The Guardian lists the top 10 alternative realities in fiction.

The Globe and Mail examines the trend of publishers adding a soundtrack to their book promotion campaigns.

The Quietus interviews Hayden Thorpe of Wild Beasts about the band's new album, Smother.

The lyrical voice on Smother seems to me the voice seems more like a whisper than the rallying cry of yore.

HT: I think we looked inwards. We had a few options, one being to get faster and louder, to become more wild beasts, in a sense. I heard someone coin the phrase 'make a Three Dancers'. But we wanted to be more dynamic and daring. We felt really empowered by knowing that people were listening, and if you know people are listening you can be a bit more subtle and a bit more collected. With the first two albums we were taking a battering ram to the door because we were desperately frustrated, and we wanted to be heard. We were so frustrated by the non-adventure in British music, and the cause was more important than the consequence. Often we were a bit over the top to try and be heard. In a sense that paid off because we proved a point that we don't have to prove again.

The Debutante Ball gathers writing advice from authors.

WFMU's Beware of the Blog interviews singer-songwriter Will Oldham.

Fresh Air interviews singer-songwriter Anna McGarrigle.

All Things Considered reviews and excerpts from the new book, Out of the Vinyl Deeps: Ellen Willis on Rock Music.

The Mountain Goats visit World Cafe for a live performance and interview.

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 new comics & graphic novels)
daily mp3 downloads
Largehearted Word (highlights of the week's new books)
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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