Posts from December 2018

15
Dec 18

Omargeddon #5: Cryptomnesia

FTPost a comment • 34 views

This is the cover art for the album Cryptomnesia by the artist El Grupo Nuevo de Omar Rodriguez-Lopez. The cover art copyright is believed to belong to the label, Rodriguez Lopez Productions, or the graphic artist(s). (for the picture description as per fair use terms).Most Omar Rodriguez-Lopez albums are released under his name, but there a few variations: El Trío de Omar Rodriguez-Lopez, the Omar Rodriguez-Lopez Quartet, the Omar Rodriguez-Lopez Quintet, and when touring, the Omar Rodriguez-Lopez Group, (though Woman Gives Birth to Tomato! was also released under this name). And then there’s El Grupo Nuevo de Omar Rodriguez-Lopez, the least literal and most tongue-in-cheek of them all.

Omar’s “new group” consisted of himself, Juan Alderete, Zach Hill, Jonathan Hischke, and Cedric Bixler-Zavala. He may just as well have called it “I Can’t Believe It’s Not The Mars Volta!” and in many ways, it’s the Volta album everyone was expecting but didn’t get with “acoustic pop album” Octahedron, released the same year. Cedric admitted it himself, noting “if anyone’s bummed that Octahedron is too simple or too pop, they can buy [this] album and it’ll take them right back to that [heavier] kind of sound. It’s one of my favourite things I’ve ever worked on. It’s pretty much a Mars Volta record, just without Thomas [Pridgen], Ikey [Owens], and Marcel [Rodriguez-Lopez].”

When I listen to Cryptomnesia, which is fairly often, I feel like I’m snuggled in a beloved, decade-old Fair Isle knit jumper covered with intricate, brightly coloured patterns. Unfortunately, it’s also very itchy in places, to the point where I have to rip it off and stash it away for a while. And then I remember how pretty and warm it is, so I eventually come back to it.

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7
Dec 18

when the gang chooses you: or how the
puffin club turned me into a punk rocker

Hidden Landscapes3 comments • 119 views

[This post originally went up at my PATREON: subscribers get to read posts and hear podcasts early — and help offset costs and time and help me do more of this kind of thing. Please share widely and encourage participation in the comments!]

This is a lightly edited extract from a piece I wrote for Frank Kogan’s fanzine WHY MUSIC SUCKS (#11, pub.June 1997). The topic was “My First Record”; some of the tone is me not quite sure at that time who I am as a writer any more, especially in this context. All the square-bracket interpolations and footnoted annotations are new.

[…] The first LP I bought was almost certainly Slapp Happy’s Slapp Happy [in 1976]. It was on bargain offer in a local shop, and I remember the grins on the faces of the shop girls when I took it off their hands. But it was very nearly – which would have been hilarious – Metal Machine Music, which was in the same bargain bin. For some reason I decided against MMM. I think that I decided it was too popular: or – since this makes no sense – that someone I knew would have bought it, so I didn’t need to.

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2
Dec 18

The Freaky Trigger Readers’ Poll 2018

FT2 comments • 150 views

Greetings, I am the renowned, cross-eyed clairvoyant, Mystic Meg. I’m here, to predict, in a deliberately awkward intonation, that the numbers 3826546, and i, and the colour “bergerac”, will be impoooortant. People who stock up on olives, and loo paper, and prosecco, will be lucky in the post-Brexit bartering economyyyyyy. If you doubt, the accuracy, of my prognosis, then you can take it up with the Broadcasting Standards Authorityyyyyy.

Thanks Mystic Meg. The Freaky Trigger 2018 poll is now open!

Rules are copied and pasted from last year:

– Choose up to 20 of your favourite tracks of 2018. I am extremely unlikely to check release dates, but if one of your choices appeared in last year’s poll, I’ll get in touch and ask you to choose another track.
– If you don’t have 20 tracks then 10 or 3 or even 1 is fine.
– If you like, put them in order (#1 will get more points than #20), otherwise I’ll assign them a random order.
– Email them to poptimistspoll2010@gmail.com by 23.59pm GMT on 31st December.
– If you are reading this, you are eligible to vote!

Bonus orgafun: tell us one (1) album you enjoyed in 2018. These won’t be ranked, I’ll just post the list of everyone’s choices at the end.

That’s your lot! Feel free to plug your own picks in the comments.