Thursday, July 23, 2009

While We're On the Topic of Music...

I've evolved as an appreciator of music. I've finally started buying (and listening to) whole albums again. And in my mind, that's such a good thing. The way I listened to music totally shifted once I got my first iPod (a pink was totally boss at the time, but it slowly became only slightly more useful than an 8-track) and started buying individual songs rather than entire albums. Before then, I had to actually go out to Sam Goody or FYE or whatever and physically purchase Good Charlotte's The Young and the Hopeless, Aaron Carter's Another Earthquake! or Pink's Try This (I had a wonderful taste in music as a fifth grader. And I actually didn't buy that last album, I got it for Christmas. In retrospect, I probs should've left it off the list, Peaches's appearance on "Oh My God" was a little much for my 11-year-old innocent brain). I didn't mind that part, but it was the process of having to skip or sometimes sit through the tracks I didn't like, and eventually tiring of a disc but being too lazy to change it that I wasn't a fan of. I was more of a single-song girl rather than a whole-album fan. Naturally, iTunes was like heaven for me. I could sift through their vast catalog of tunage picking and chooosing the 20 or so songs I wanted that month (not that I still don't get a kick out of it. The first of the month [i.e. when I get my iTunes allowance] is my favorite day.) However, after a while I started missing actually listening to entire albums. Listening to a good album was like reading a good book, more or less; you get really excited in the beginning, go through the entire range of human emotions via song, take the stories in, and feel fully satisfied at the end. So, I started buying albums again, both physically and virtually. And it's been musical bliss ever since (more or less, I do get some duds occasionally, such as Duncan Sheik's Whisper House. Just dissapointing).

Anywho, I've been listening to a few albums this summer. Here are some of my faves thus far:

The Decemberists' The Hazards of Love - Somehow, even though I got tickets to the show backing this album, I didn't actually listen to any of the songs until a week or so before the actual show (damn you, Junior year!). I bought a few songs off the album, and instantly got pumped for he actual show. The Decemberists are known for writing folksy-rock, "story songs", but I'm pretty sure this is one of their first attempts at an entire concept album. The story here (which, I'll admit, I didn't pick up on at first) features a young woman named Margaret who basically gets knocked up by her shape-shifting lover, William, and faces the wrath of his forest queen mother and a lavacious rake (yes I did get the phrase "lavacious rake" from Wikipedia, eat me). The band played the entire album, front to back, at the concert, with Becky Stark and Shara Worden (my new idol) in the roles of Margaret and the forest queen respectively. The album goes from hard rock to folk to ballad, and transitions between its many phases beautifully. As a fan of musical theatre, I'm always a sucker for a good story, too, and the Decemberists deliver. This is one of those albums you have to listen to beginning to end though, so it could be a tough sell for the shuffle crowd. However, there are some solid stand-alone tracks on there as well.
Key Tracks: "The Hazards of Love 1 (The Prettiest Whistles Won't Wrestle the Thistles Undone)", "Won't Want for Love (Margaret in the Taiga)", "The Wanting Comes in Waves/Repaid", "The Rake's Song", "The Queen's Rebuke/The Crossing"

Regina Spektor's Far - I honestly worship the ground this woman walks on. She kinda can do no wrong in my book. This album is like...the sound of sunshine. She's on top of her game in terms of songwriting; like the Decemberists, she tends to go for the storytelling approach, and she tells some really good stories, I won't lie. I mean, who else could write a song about a lost wallet and a Blockbuster card? Musically, her sound is a little different than some of her previous albums; cheerier, but it still sounds destinctively Regina. However, I think she could have picked a better first single. "Laughing With" is kind of a downer, and honestly doesn't represent the rest of the album. Then again, different strokes for different folks. Of course, my favorite effort of her's is probably still Soviet Kitch, but Far could overtake that soon. :)
Key Tracks: "The Calculation", "Eet", "Blue Lips", "Folding Chair", "Dance Anthem of the 80's", "The Wallet"

That's all for now. I probably would go on, but I do have a flight to catch in the morning. I'll do reviews from time to time. I'm a big music fan (and a musician myself), and love sharing my tastes with anyone who will listen. :)

Guess Who Wrote a Song?

I DID I DID! May still need a little tweaking, but I wrote an actual song! With lyrics and music and melody and all that! Huzzah!


It just can't be that time again
Just doesn't feel real
Just as I got used to things
As I've begun to heal
Not time for me to cut and run
Not time for me to go
I thought that this was normalcy
Guess I'll never know

Oh, oh, oh
Not time to go
From this place I know
So well

Finally got what I wanted
Finally have a home
That keystone I come back to
A sort of cornerstone
But it's time to go now
Can't stay here for so long
Always been my mantra
Yet now it feels so wrong

But like it or not,
It's time to go
From this place I knew
So well
Gotta move on
It's time to go
And now I know that I can
Do well

Monday, July 20, 2009

One small step...

Sooo I just heard some weird bowling alley-esque sound coming from outside my dorm window. Odd. Probably the construction.

Now that I've probably lost your attention, I'll go on with my normal rantings. Today, as many of y'all know, is the 40th anniversary of the moon landing. No big deal, right? Of course it's a big freakin' deal. It's an even bigger freakin' deal to me and my family because my grandpa helped build the Lunar Module (or the fancy-lookin' spider-y thing that they went on the moon with). I think he worked on one of the legs? Correct me if I'm wrong, family. Anyway, that got me thinking a lot about legacies. This is one of the most important events in U.S. (and world) history, and my grandfather was a part of that. And then...nothing. He kinda faded into oblivion more or less, took care of his family, yadayada. People kind of forgot about him. I really don't want that to happen to me. I want people to remember me. I want to have an impact on...something, and I want to be remembered for it, ya know? Maybe it's my quest for fame that started when I wanted to be a pop star when I was 7. I guess some things never change...

I want waffles. And fried chicken. Both of which are available in Syracuse. :)

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Welcome Back, Blogger.

Alert the presses! Oooor not?

Yes, after nearly a year and a half of silence, I have re-joined the blogosphere. I kept a blog from 7th grade to halfway through sophomore year, tried to go back, but to no avail. I guess I'm a different person than I was then; I've felt a pretty big life shift since. Soooo, I'm going for a fresh start, and at a pretty pivotal part in my life, too. SENIOR YEAR (of high school, that is).

I'm feeling mixed emotions about senior year, but I guess everyone does. I'm half excited, half scared shit-less. There's all the fun stuff (seniority, LM, homecoming, prom, driving, yadayadayada) and the less fun (college, AP classes, college, leadership, college, stress, etc.). So join me, won't you, for the ups and downs of this bat-shit crazy year.

Jesus, I feel like a game show host.

Anywho, I'm currently at Syracuse University for their Summer College program, learning about communications and media and photography and all that good stuff. It's a good time and I am learning a lot. For one, I think I can handle this whole college thing. I mean, we'll see how the whole midterms nonsense goes, but I think I'm handling my work pretty well. Socially, it's still a little clique-y, but I've found some pretty cool people. However, I am missing home and some especially lovely people there (one in particular :)), and I'm not really sure what emotional state I'll be in at the end of my 6 weeks here. We'll see how that goes. Expect updates on the whole ordeal.

That's all for now. I hate ending blogs, it's always so awkward. I feel like I need to wrap it up somehow, but I'm strugglin'. I should probably work on that.