Whenever I listen to The Strokes song Gratisfaction from the new album Angles, I always think of the band Thin Lizzy. I liked a lot of classic rock when I was in my late teens, and Thin Lizzy was by far one of my favorites. Here are two videos for y’all to compare for yourselves. And really this Thin Lizzy song is a great one.

The very last seconds of the song remind me of the band Boston a little bit, since I’m already associating classic rock here.

Thin Lizzy: Dancing In the Moonlight (side note: Billy Corgan does a sweet cover of this song)

There is something very similar to my mind about Phil Lynott of Thin Lizzy and Julian Casablancas, some of it could even be an image/attitude/wearing sunglasses a lot sort of thing.

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Yesterday was the warmest day of the year in the Seattle area, it got up to 60 degrees, and it was sunny. So despite the wind, we made plans to go to the park after school. Before we left, I checked the mail and the Strokes “Angles” was there! I listened to it the whole 1 minute drive to the park. Why, I wondered, couldn’t it have come on a rainy day?

That first song; “Machu Picchu” is so so good. I was left wanting more when I parked the car and went to try and fly a kite. (BTW: do any of you know what kind of kite is relatively cheap and easy to fly? Our dragon kite from Costco is not logging much airtime, mostly it just crashes.)

I have listened to Angles quite a few times by now. I really like it. I’m still trying to get to know some of the songs in the middle though.

My favorite things about this album are pretty much the same as in their other albums, Julian’s voice and the guitars and their own special blend of putting it all together. The keyboard, especially in Machu Picchu, is so 80′s. I of course love it, that was one of the best parts about the 80′s I think. I’m so happy the keyboard didn’t die with shoulder pads.

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In honor of William Patrick Corgan’s birthday, aka “St. Patrick’s Day” I had everything Smashing Pumpkins set to shuffle on my i pod for pretty much the whole day, and the day after as well. No worries, I also wore green.

My sweet 9 year old son was helping me lay out fabric for a denim quilt I plan to start sewing any day now, when “X.Y.U.” from the iconic album “Melloncollie and the Infinite Sadness” started playing. I was deep in concentration and not really paying close attention to the song (otherwise I would have skipped it, because its not terribly appropriate for kids).

He made the simplest observation a few minutes into the song: ” this is an angry song.”

Good thing he got my attention when he did, because there was soon to be a need for precision coughing. From what I can tell that is the most effective way to edit a song when you can’t reach the skip button in time.

Mostly I just thought it was profound and adorable that he was able to so matter of factly pinpoint the emotion in that song. Kids notice so much of what is going on around them.

I thought about it a lot the rest of St. Patrick’s Day, especially when the song “Soma” was playing.

-and really as a side note if you are reading this from facebook you should click over to the real post so you can listen to this amazing song and as a bonus see Billy with hair-

The level of emotion needed to have written songs like that is a double edged sword. It fuels artists like Van Gough to cut off their own ear. In another way it inspired Billy Corgan to create Soma. So much beauty and depth seems to some how spring from deep (sometimes painful or hurting or angry) emotions. I think about this a lot, actually. On the one hand, I love what is created so much, and I am really happy to have it in my life as it enriches and inspires me. On the other hand, this work of beauty and art was paid so often with a high price on the artist’s behalf.

These days Billy is happy. His music has been greatly affected by it, and not all in positive ways. Except for (and I have to remind myself of this often): he is happy. He said something not too long ago about making the fans happy or him happy, but it was difficult to do both. It should be his turn, I’m glad he chose him. Now I enjoy some of the new stuff more than others, but its mostly lacking that core emotion. Its still really good, just….

Really, I’m just so glad I got/get to LOVE and BREATHE and LIVE to his beautiful music.

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Yes, I did just pre order The Strokes new album “Angles.”   Its not coming out until March 22, but I am a believer in being prepared.   Their single “Under Cover of Darkness” is awesome, as you either already know or will hear for yourself as soon as you listen to it:

I am getting a little spoiled as of late, seeing lots of my favorite bands live. I kind of figured that The Strokes would tour through Seattle and was telling my 12 yr. old daughter that her mum was most likely going to see The Strokes live in the next few months. She got pretty crabby with me, because she wanted to go too! I am proud of her for having such good taste in music, she is very discerning. I still wouldn’t have let her come with me though. Turns out it doesn’t matter, they are not coming here.

She does get teased a lot by her friends at school because she doesn’t listen to the same mass fed garbage that they all do. Sometimes they say some pretty hurtful things like: “Every normal girl in America listens to this” with bratty emphasis on the “normal” ….except wait…. oh yah, not all of us want to be just like them, so in reality they are complimenting her. But, when you are 12 and trying to make it through your days of middle school, sometimes its hard to see how that is a compliment and not just another daily insult to the music that she likes.

I admire my daughter, and I also feel sorry for her because none of her friends will realize just how amazingly cool she is for many more years to come. Until then, we are just going to enjoy another fabulous Strokes album.

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“Scott Pilgrim vs. The World” makes me smile.   Hello- he wears two different Smashing Pumpkins shirts during the course of the movie.   And, he wears them when he needs to be at his coolest.  He’s wearing one in the picture above, kind of hard to see though.

There is lots to love in this movie: music, bands, very funny & cooky, crazy fight scenes, band t-shirts ( I really love a good band tee), funky hair colors…

*not in any way appropriate for kids though, do not try this for a family flick night.

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Maybe you know more than one Dav Pilkey (or none at all), and you want to know to whom I am referring to?

TRA LA LA!!! The creator of such masterpieces as “Captain Underpants,”  “Ook and Gluk: Kung Fu Cavemen from the Future,” “Dogzilla,” and “Dragon.”

As a Literature major in college, specifically the dry, stuffy, (code: total lit snob) incredibly lengthy, Victorian British literature; I also had a true love for Captain Underpants. Going to the bookstore for the latest story, or getting one for my birthday from a younger sibling was such a fun thing for me. Perhaps it seemed odd that a grown person was moved to tears from laughing so hard, or that I took the Flip O Rama section’s hand positions very seriously, but I knew from the first sign that George and Harold changed around that this was great literature.

All of my children have grown up loving Dav Pilkey’s books, they were some of the first things my kids read all on their own. Captain Underpants was crucial to Zave becoming the awesome reader that he is today. We read “Dragon’s Merry Christmas” every year as a holiday tradition and I cry with laughter and emotion every single time. Not bad for a childrens book about a silly dragon.

I admire Dav Pilkey, I love his personal story, and he lives on one of the islands off the Washington coast by Seattle, so he lives near by as well. He has such a fun website with all kinds of neat stuff, music being one of them. Super Diaper Baby is a personal favorite, along with Oops I Farted .


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When I don’t even know what I want to listen to, its a good clue that I’m feeling a little blah, or even more serious: just plain numb.  This was pretty much the case this morning as I stared blankly at my ipod knowing that it would give me what I needed, I just had to pick something.   That is what I love about “shuffle,” it helps you out when you can’t seem to help yourself.

After a few good songs started making my blood unfreeze in my veins, THIS song came on and totally reminded me that I am alive….. you know on adventure movies: “I’m Alive!!!”    Bye June by The Smashing Pumpkins (before James took the The in the divorce) has helped me out of this situation more than once, I should just know by now.

Then, after I felt so happy, Over It by Koufax started playing. I couldn’t find that song anywhere for you to listen to it, but I did find this one by the same band which you might enjoy also. This is a great band to chill out and listen to.

To finish this 3 part resuscitation, Accuracy by The Cure came on.

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