Thursday, November 30, 2006


No, I'm not talking about LL Cool J.

I'm talking about Tom Waits.

At this point, my CD collection spans several hundred years of music (from Beethoven and before to Enduser and beyond) and innumerable genres (pop, rock, blues, jazz, and a ton of others most folks have never even heard of; e.g. "what the hell is 'glitch'?").

And over 2500 recordings.

With that much music, you can just imagine how hard it is when people ask me, "Who's your favorite band?" This is damn near an impossible question for me, as a sufferer of advanced audio addiction, to answer. Depends on my mood; depends on what kind of day I've had, what I've done, what I'm looking forward to doing, and what's going on around me at the time. I have a very thirsty ear, so it's easy for me to jump from one sound to another that seems completely unrelated.

My brain is a weird place to live sometimes. Trust me. Anyway, with all this music around me, I do have to say that one man always fits the mood.

That man is Tom Waits.

Since 1973, Tom has been putting out the most diverse and adventurous music I've ever heard. Notice I didn't say "some of the most diverse". No: the most diverse and adventurous. No other artist I know has experimented to the same degree that Waits has. There is no genre that man is afraid to utilize, from straight ahead rock to blues to soul to jazz to balladry to outer edge experimentalism.

His new 3-disc collection, Orphans, is a perfect example. From the Anti website:

Brawlers is packed with full throated juke joint stomp, boogies and riotous blues. It’s roadhouse Waits... he chugs, whistles and screams. It’s primal steaming surreal blues. He channels the Stones, Beefheart, Muddy Waters and T-Rex. One new one, "Low Down" is raw garage rock with Waits’ 20 year old son, Casey on drums and San Francisco’s white trash blues icon, Ron Hacker, on guitar.

Bawlers – Lonesome ballads about the sadness at the end of the road are framed by tender songs of innocence and green hope. The plaintive hill country laments of, "Tell It To Me" and the cautionary tale, "Fannin Street" blend poignantly with saloon songs of betrayal and despair ("The World Keeps Turning"), Celtic waltzes and bitter cabaret torch songs like, "It’s Over" and "Little Drop Of Poison", all of which explore what the heart gives and what it takes away.

Bastards – explores the strange and unusual side of Waits, who is peculiar by nature. Contained here is experimental music and scary tales. There are uncategorizable diversions into this dark side. It tunnels beneath the city with spiels, rants, mouth rhythms, including a poignant reminiscence of car ownership, a Ramones cover and a version of Daniel Johnston’s, "King Kong", a disturbing bedtime story,(not for children faint of heart), and a poem by Charles Bukowski. It has insects, murder, drowning and insanity. Or as ma says, the full dinner menu.

So it's a continuation of the wonderful weirdness that Tom has been putting out for years. Sure, there were only dribs and drabs of bizarre prior to 1983, but that was the era of gin-soaked, melancholy Tom. Beautiful darkness, lovingly crafted. Then came 1983's Swordfishtrombones. The flood gates exploded and Waits brought the weird. And it's been a delirious trip ever since.

Keep going, Tom. I wanna see where else you take me.

(And tour more, damn it!)

Inner world travel diary:

Tom Waits - Orphans
(three discs of pure gold)

Louis Armstrong - Hot Fives And Sevens
(four discs of pure old)

Nile - Annihilation Of The Wicked
(oh.. my... god; sorry, I mean Ra)

Various - DJ Abstract 17: Midnight At The Velvet Club
(kickin' back and chillin' out)

Various - DJ Abstract 18: Arc Light Mix
(poundin' down)

Monday, November 13, 2006

Pound it on down

I'd been toying around with the idea of throwing together a new mix, but couldn't decide whether I wanted to go the chillout or the freakout route. I was still in the throws of this conflict when I headed to my spin classes on Saturday morning. The instructor played a majorly old school dance music tape during my second class and that pretty much decided the matter.

So the freak flag was flown that afternoon.

May I present to you DJ Abstract 18: Arc Light Mix. To quote myself, "The eighteenth mix from DJ Abstract brings down the trance and the hard house. Thick four-on-the-floor dance tunes to get your body moving." Here's the tracklisting:

01 Man With No Name - Broken Promise
02 Infected Mushroom - Spaniard
03 Bluescreen - Surfacing
04 Winx - How's The Music (Ovum Warmth Mix)
05 Underworld - Dinosaur Adventure 3D
06 Point Blank - Meng's Theme (Original Mix)
07 Analog Pussy - Solipse Technology
08 Resistance D - Unknown
09 Hardfloor - Who's Jack?
10 Daft Punk - Revolution 909
11 Solvent - Think Like Us (Alter Ego Remix)

So bounce on over to my website and download this bad boy for yourself. Check out the other 17 mixes while you're there. Enjoy.

Calling me "Flower" if they want to:

Various - DJ Abstract 18: Arc Light Mix
(strobe lights not included)

L7 - From The Outer Space
(the grrrls are back in town)

Dream Into Dust - The Lathe Of Heaven
(whispering sweet nothings in your ear; then cutting it off)

The Bug - Killing Sound
(me murder dem)

The Acacia Strain - ...And Life Is Very Long
(but too short to spare your eardrums)

Thursday, November 09, 2006

House of cards

"I'm obviously disappointed with the outcome of the election and, as the head of the Republican party, I share a large part of the responsibility." - Dumbya

"The timing is right for new leadership at the Pentagon... [Rumsfeld] understands that Iraq is not working well enough, fast enough." - Dumbya

Welcome to America, George. It delights me to see this kind of cold water thrown in your face. Your failed policies have lost your party its control of the Senate and your approval ratings continue to plummet further into the cellar. Maybe now you'll realize what a fuckup you are (though I doubt it). If there is any justice in the world, history will cite you as one of our worst. After eight years of budget surpluses and social advancements (thanks, Bill), you brought us six years of budget deficits, escalated intolerance, and failed, costly wars. The rest of the world pretty much hates us and it's your fault.

Too bad you don't follow Donnie's example and hit the fucking bricks.

"Bye, Rummy. See you soon."

Too bad it won't be sooner.

Soundtrack for the Republican going away party:

N.W.A. - Efil4zaggin
(because misogyny and violence are just the coolest)

Kraftwerk - Radio-Activity
(1975 sounds like 2005)

Marilyn Manson - Antichrist Superstar
(because Brian votes democratic)

Enduser - Pushing Back
(highly developed braincrushing device)

Nile - In The Beginning
(maintaining universal harmony as the counterbalance of Barry Manilowe)

Friday, November 03, 2006

Once again...

Or should I say, "Schadenfreude, Part II".

Seems Mr. Ted Haggard... Oh, pardon me. "Reverend" Ted Haggard... has resigned as president of the National Association of Evangelicals because of accusations that he has been paying a male prostitute for sex over the course of several years. Teddy has also stepped down at his own church "pending an internal investigation". The guy who has replaced him says that Haggard (and he is...) has already admitted to some of the accusations.

Strangely enough, Haggard was listed by Time magazine on its 2005 list of the 25 most influential evangelical leaders (according to CNN), "noting his participation in a weekly conference call with White House staffers and other religious leaders."

Nice, Ted.

Once again, it seems that those who shout the loudest have the most to hide. One of my favorite phrases continues to be, "Methinks the lady doth protest too much." I'm not saying that every homophobe is actually gay, but honestly, folks, why would you be so angry if there wasn't some fear involved, be it fear of discovery or fear of inadequacy? "I don't feel like a manly man, so I need to show I'm a manly man by hating faggots."

That's stupid.

Any straight man that is truly comfortable with their own sexuality should have no problem with gay men. If somebody hits on you, so what? Be complimented. God knows few enough women have the stones (metaphorically speaking) to step to a guy and make their intentions that concrete. A gay man chatting you up means you're probably a decent looking, interesting dude. Take it as a compliment and then politely decline.

He'll understand.

Wouldn't it be nice if gay people could just say, "Hey, I'm gay" and get on with their lives? Can you imagine if Ted could have done that when he was a teen? Sure, he wouldn't have his wife and his five kids, but I daresay he'd probably be happier and there'd be slightly less anti-gay sentiment in the world. Heck, if the church didn't have its head up its ass so far, he still could have been a Reverend or whatever.

"I've no idea what I'm doing."

Of course, the caveat to all this is that we still live in an incredibly intolerant country. I'm lucky enough to live in a place where a person can come out of the closet and be embraced by a culture that already exists here. Coming out in Colorado is, no doubt, a different situation. After all, they're in the midst of trying to ban gay marriage, "God hates fags", etc.

Some advice: Move to civilization.

(Man, I can be a real asshole sometimes)

I like to listen to these with all of my God-cursed, gay friends:

Alien Sex Fiend - Curse
(with the big boobies)

3rd Bass - The Cactus Album
(two white boys doin' it better than the Beasties)

The Opus - Breathing Lessons
(mad tight instrumental alt-hop)

Kraftwerk - The Mix
(boom chock)

Deep Forest - Boheme
(their first album is so much better)