modmyth

MUSIC: A Listening Journal

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Posted (edited)

...because I want to keep a record of the new music that I listen to (+ momentary thoughts and observations), and partially because I don't want to clog the main music journal with too many posts of mine. This is meant to be a relaxed, casual, for fun thing (at least for now).

Starting with the Murlocs who I discovered on KEXP; I was vaguely familiar with King Gizzard & The Lizard Wizard (a modern psych rock act), but not this act. I think they share the same singer. KG&LW didn't still; to be honest, it's hard to tell how much of it was because I would have maybe felt that way anyway, and how much is because for an extended period of time I didn't actually want music to be too complicated, overstimulating, or challenging. (Aka. I was being "basic" according to my previous music listening tendencies, but I felt no shame or had extra shits to give about this.) It felt too much like chronic sensory over stimulation at the time, and I didn't want to get overly attached or emotionally involved with it as I did when I was a teenager especially. Nor did I want to go back into getting too attached to the idea of "my taste" either.

It's been a long enough time where I bothered to be that open to music, for whatever and however it presents itself, long enough where it feels almost as if I'm starting again from scratch. That's... a positive thing.

I'm listening to another live recording done on KEXP two years ago:

I think my favourite aspect is this man's vocal tone. It's such a hard thing to explain in more detail, sometimes, what draws you in. Sometimes it's the spirit, sometimes it's the delivery, sometimes it's the tone, often it's at least a few different factors which form some inseparable whole.

This song came back into my head a couple hours ago, and now I find that his voice is stuck underneath my skin (and now I can't get it out). I think I'm in love.

I find it warm and antidepressive. Some person in the comments for one of the videos somewhere compared his voice to Geddy Lee (Rush). Maybe... at the most superficial level of presentation, I guess I can see it a little bit? I listened to a lot of Rush as a teenager. I enjoyed his voice (Geddy Lee); it's very distinctive, though to my understanding quite a few people hate it. He has one of those polarizing voices. Personally, I don't have many vocalists whose voices that I can't really stand. It's moreso that it's hard to provoke a strong reaction in me one way or another, and it doesn't necessary have that much to do with classic, technical proficiency.

I also listened to this (a repost of what I put on the shared music journal thread):

Something that I appreciate that I haven't heard in a while, a super aggressive harmonica solo:

>insert stock photo of a man playing harmonica<

--------

Serious question: is a murloc anything else except a creature from Warcraft??

Rcpromo3.png

(Back before you got swarmed to death simply because you happened to be running though.)

Edited by modmyth
Sometimes a habit and an identity ceases to be both authentic and relevant.

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Posted (edited)

So I decided to give Rush a relisten in increments, as I haven't listened to them very much since my teenaged years, which is when I used to listen to them quite a bit. I decided to start here. I swear that I've heard bits of pieces of this album here and there and everywhere (specifically: 1) Xanadu 2) Cygnus X-1) which is not surprising given how influential it is in the genre/ anything the genre touches.

Yea, it's a classic album, and I'm pretty sure I've heard all or almost all of the songs on it before... although probably not in order.

I also feel like I've exhausted listening to this type of sound years ago.

Rush is so nerdy... I found myself laughing at the lyrics in a few places for that reason. Maybe it's just this album especially, as I don't remember the other songs that I listened to being quite as cheesy in a mythological kind of way.

This a really nice listen right now; it's the kind of music that has quite a bit of energy in many places, but I can actually write to this music because it has the right vibes and also because it has no lyrics. I've always been partial to post-rock/ post-metal as a genre.

My introduction to the genre (post-metal specifically) was Agalloch - Ashes Against the Grain the first 2-3 albums by Isis (Celestial, Oceanic, Panopticon) which were favourites in my mid-teens. For "post rock"? Probably Sigur Ros like everyone else? I was aware of them in my very early teens, but I hadn't gotten into their sound/ didn't have the means to listen to it much by myself anyway.

Post-metal: *****lucid, sober headbanging mood*****

And a second one by Russian Circles (2013); the one above was from 2008. "Burial" gives off an intense black metal vibes/ mood without technically being in the genre.

This finisher in particular is cathartic and an also an emotional bleeder.

 If this song isn't a mood of the moment, I don't know what is.

(Also, I just read that this is the only song by the group which actually features vocals or lyrics.)

Edited by modmyth

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Posted (edited)

Music that I listened to recently that I didn't like: I listened to one of the sets by the Lumineers on KEXP, as I was curious what were the most popular listens on the channel. I think at least 3-4 of the other popular listens were for Florence + The Machine. J happened to be in my room at the time, on my bed naked, flipping through the copy of Junji Ito's "Uzumaki" that he had gotten for me this xmas, which I still haven't finished reading yet. I was focusing pretty hard on drawing straight lines for white ink on black (featured in my art journal AUTOCREATE) and trying not to fuck it up. I thought it was super boring. J said that it sounded like folk music that would play at Chapters, which is generally not ever a compliment (like calling it inoffensive mall music). I also listened to the Pom Pom Squad on the same channel and it was some combination of boring and "not my thing".

This was just within the last couple days.

2-3+ months ago, I was going out of my way to sometimes listen to new music, though I was not very open and particularly emotionally invested in it. I've had a throwaway attitude towards it for some years now. I was listening to music that was classed under coldwave/ post-punk because it's mostly all new to me. Most of it sounded the same to me, and it got repetitive very quickly. I find myself wondering about the degree to which this experience was caused directly by my psychoemotional state and half-hearted levels of interest in general at the time.

Duly noting that I'm more partial to repetitiveness in some genres rather than others if not simply because I have more of a taste for it (for example, post-rock can get pretty damn repetitive in terms of its sound palettes). Still I would prefer to listen to this type of repetitiveness over other types of repetition.

I wouldn't describe listening to this music as disliking it, but closer to absolute indifference. Or ***mildly interesting at first***.

Note that's completely unrelated to the title of this post: I've been making J playlists more seriously lately.

I listened to this song because it's named after a work by a somewhat lesser known Sufi author, Farid ud-Din (فرید الدین) Attar (عطار).

Edited by modmyth
I found Florence + The Machine boring within the past 1-2 years when I sat and listened to at least 3-4 of their albums, not sure if general mood/ psychological state also. I knew a good number of people who were big fans 10+ years ago.

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2 hours ago, modmyth said:

This finisher in particular is cathartic and an also an emotional bleeder.

 If this song isn't a mood of the moment, I don't know what is.

(Also, I just read that this is the only song by the group which actually features vocals or lyrics.)

Oh wow, never heard of this band but that's so beautiful :x

(I'm all over these self-actualisation journals at the moment for fuck's sake :D)


'When you look outside yourself for something to make you feel complete, you never get to know the fullness of your essential nature.' - Amoda Maa Jeevan

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@modmyth Hey, what can I tell you? ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ xD

There's just more humanity in this section of the forum, I think :) 


'When you look outside yourself for something to make you feel complete, you never get to know the fullness of your essential nature.' - Amoda Maa Jeevan

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Posted (edited)

Shit I've already listened to (that I wanna listen to again):

This was absolutely a favourite of mine in my early 20s, back when I wasn't listening to so much music, but I still had a few new things that I really got sucked into. For being experimental... whatever genre you call this, really... I've always found this album both imminently listenable (as in, enjoyable to listen to) as well as very seamlessly flowing and put together. According to my memory at the time this album came out, I remember reading at that the frontman/ writer conceived of this whole album during astral projection, that he heard the music very lucidly. This was also an early example of a successful crowd-funded album (I forgot what platform it was funded on).

So, this goes with the album that came some years before (Leaving Your Body Map), which is good but not as good, IMO. Also, related note: I was never a big fan of Kayo Dot, personally (Toby Driver's other act).

The whole of Causalities of Cool, which I associate immediately with playing Skyrim simply because of the time period the album came out. I had been listening to DTP's other work in his solo project for at least a couple years (his solo work, anyway). I wasn't a huge fan of Strapping Young Lad as a teenager but I acquired more of a taste for it as I got a bit older. Featuring more a lot more drugs, rage, and the famous skullet, and also less fatherhood.

There was always that "pop metal" strain throughout his work since the beginning. Addicted! was such a fun album and it was on repeat a lot shortly after graduating from uni.

Anyway, he tuned into his country aspirations for this album, apparently. I always loved Che Aimee Dorval's voice here. I'm pretty sure she's also a native of the Lower Mainland (or is she from the BC interior? 'Not sure.)

There was something else that slipped my mind...

Edited by modmyth

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Posted (edited)

More shit that I've already listened to (that I wanna listen to again):

This particular album by Ulver which is probably the best one, IMO:

(The perfect use of negative space on this album cover is a thing that sparks joy for me; almost no album covers make use of the square frame well, but I happen to be very compositionally finicky here. That it's just slightly, perfectly askew. ......)

The last time I listened to it was two summers ago and I was super fucked up perceptually (and in all ways), which is something that I have occasionally written a little about. But it was AMAZING listening to it then because my ability to listen to sound in a very, very expansive and deconstructed sort of way was unlike anything I have ever heard or experienced before then.

If it was possible to describe what it was like to hear "energy" and "sound waves" super directly in some unquantifiable degree of scope and detail (like a true multiperspective thing), I guess that is how I would start to describe it. Which is really describing nothing in particular. So we tend to struggle to describe the sublime. But perhaps... if you could take the barest, cleanest, most luminous canvas, and paint with the largest brush, and to paint directly with something like fire and flow and love. It was a very grandiose and all-encompassing experience like that. There was something about the songs where I seemed to experience it super slowly in a drawn out way, and aspects of the sound seemed to break down into smaller and smaller elements, like these crystalline shards fitting into something...

I had the sense of the shape of the sound being super circular in this work, the construction of it all. But it's not the first time where I had spaced out and I started seeing music structure as "shapes", this happens to me occasionally here and there; it's just usually not super detailed.

Also, when I started playing around with writing music when I was 11ish on Cakewalk especially, I immediately went to writing it as a visual structure, both considering how it would look as sheet music (if I was using that, and that was what I was most comfortable with), but specifically I could picture the interrelationships between sounds as shapes/ visuals.  I'm pretty sure that would be considered a form of ideasthesia in contemporary neurological work, even if it's not considered classical synthesia proper. Anyway, moving on...

Personally I've heard enough of this album in the last two years or so:

Before COVID hit, I wanted to see more live music again, but not necessarily metal/ rock related acts (although possibly so, I miss the energy of it now especially). Ulver/ "The Assassination of Julius Caesar" was one of the acts that I was going to see (I even invited J despite our extremely dubious and broken relationship status at the time).

I wonder if I was to see a heavier/ "more extreme" metal act now if I would still get looked at like... what is this underaged, vanilla-looking bitch doing here? Haha. Or have I finally aged out and levelled up now? (The first thing, I'm sure. -_____- And honestly, it probably wasn't just that I looked out of place appearance wise, but that I really felt out place around people there... it probably showed.)

----

@RickyFitts Yea, people are usually more civil here and argue less, at the very least.

Edited by modmyth

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@modmyth Yeah that's true, feels like a more supportive environment on the whole.


'When you look outside yourself for something to make you feel complete, you never get to know the fullness of your essential nature.' - Amoda Maa Jeevan

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Posted (edited)

ALBUM FLOW (VS. Non-Flow):

I listened to this whole album; I also posted this on the collective music journal thread.

Currently working my way through a playlist: "Post-punk compilation, vol. 1":

https://open.spotify.com/playlist/01tvqPxen74Nz7TRz7kpSd?si=b072563556a34a84

This is actually a manageable length, unlike some of the playlists I've found where its like: Sampler of >insert genre< (and it's about 90 hours long, haha.)

So just generally (not referring specifically to the album above), I'm trying to listen to more albums from start to finish, especially in the case that they were designed to be listened in that way. And some albums do have an incredible flow as well. Some albums feel completely disjointed in terms of slow flow (like a series of single and probably a number of non-singles), and there is everything in between.

However, I admit that it can get pretty monotonous in many cases. Maybe it's because I started being able to access my own music in the era close to when music downloading started becoming very common (although Napster had been around for at least a handful of years) and it was often difficult to find full albums in many cases even when I wanted to (pre-streaming era). I rarely had extra money to buy albums though I really wanted to, not to mention that if you want something out of the ordinary, you have to go to a specialized record store. Major record stores probably started taking a serious tank to income around this era as well; many people thought that they were all going to go extinct (or at least, a very vocal minority thought so).

---

So I was just thinking to myself about a piece of dialogue that I heard in a TV series recently that went something like (roughly and terribly paraphrased): 

Him: "Do you write? You look like the kind of girl that writes." (why does this sound like a come-on to me right now though? Haha.)

Girl: No, not really. Well, I write but mostly for myself. I don't actually show anyone.

And at some point in the dialogue, there was an inserted point about how she only reads books on paper and writes in the margins, and doesn't own a kindle, because that's a thing, like some sort of distinguished identity marker. And I thought it was odd at first, having grown up in the pre e-reader era; that's just what you do if you read a ton, take notes (either for fun or for pleasure). But I also own a kindle (I think I was the first person I knew IRL to own one) because an ebook collection is a very practical thing even if you also own a lot of books. Like sorry, I don't have spare rooms or shelves for all of these books (which does not take into account the price factor)? I'm also trying to live more minimalistically as well. And I love used and old books, and books in general, as much as the next bibliophile. But I think I'm more practical than sentimental at this point in time.

My 7-10 year old's self would have had her mind blown at the prospect of having a library in your pocket for less than the weight of a lot of paperbacks; I mean this in a positive way.

Is this like... a contemporary equivalent of "I ONLY OWN VINYLS/ CDS"? (/music streaming is for plebians, which is an identity-marker issue first and less so about say... the ethics and consequences of streaming) Do these people actually exist as millennials or younger without some massive, "pretentious" effort to do such?

Anyway, I'm not a boomer Gen-X, I can't relate with the music thing. But I imagine that there is a similar sort of ingrained relationship here between getting sentimental/ nostalgic about physical music and having a collection and what not? And for the rest of us, we might also like collecting things but it's not going to be quite the same.

Edited by modmyth
There is also that special pleasure of getting used books and reading what people wrote in the margins previously, or at least underlined. It's like reading two texts at once! (with the notes being a sort of meta-text// all that jazz about intertexuality)

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Album(s) of the Moment// SHOEGAZEY-ness: wait, so there are multiple albums EPs with the same main title (Winks and Kisses)? I listened to "Melted", but I'm listening to the other ones now.

The most obvious standout track is:

 

Edited by modmyth
I just learned what "EP" actually means/ stands for. Add that to the list of things that I feel like I should know what it means but I don't for whatever reason........

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NEW ABBA + Etc.: Huh. They're back again.

This isn't COVID vibes!

Before I started this journal, I got through a couple albums of "Felt":

https://open.spotify.com/playlist/3HIx2rite23jlkoyQuFVs9?si=962c685b08af48ed

RANDOM YOUTUBE RECOMMENDATION: I came here because the animation looked really intriguing, wasn't expecting the animation and the music to be by the same person!

 

Edited by modmyth
^So talent, wow!

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@modmyth always appreciate jazz in the morning. Here's a different version, although I'm always a sucker for breathy female vocals B|

 


Consiousness is big. You just won't believe how vastly, hugely, mind-bogglingly big it is.

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Ugh :S It was "I Can't Help It" sung by Gretchen Parlato.


Consiousness is big. You just won't believe how vastly, hugely, mind-bogglingly big it is.

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Brian Eno (Film Music 1976-2020): Most music is way too high strung and textured for my sensitive senses at the moment, so I'm listening to this right now.

Brian Eno was one of those things that was in the background a lot growing up via my brother; I associate his ambient music with being 11-13 especially.

@LastThursday Thanks! I found a different version to post here:

(Apparently this song was originally sung by MJ, but was written by Stevie Wonder.)

 

 

Edited by modmyth
Reality being almost painfully, gloriously lucid and detailed as it is. Remember when I used to numb myself to get by in this world??

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Something relaxing and nonobtrusive:

Something with more distortion, at the moment:

I haven't listened to Boris in AGES. In particular, I find this song very satisfying for reasons that I can't fully explain beyond the guitar wailing and screaming, and the droney-ness of it, despite my sound/ perceptive sensitivities where I'm finding a lot of music and sounds irritating right now, this triggers a sense of relaxation/ openness:

IDK, I guess distortion alone is a non-issue for me. 

This one in particular is super relaxing:

About 1-2ish months, I listened to a handful of albums by Jon Hopkins which I hadn't heard before previously (specifically: Immunity, Insides, Opalescent). The earlier albums especially had the right vibe for a late night walk then.

Edited by modmyth

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BORIS (circa 2003) + EARTH (1993):

Featuring a spin-off cover of this Nick Drake album, which I haven't listened to since spring 2019 or so. It doesn't exactly have the best associations at the moment as a result, and I haven't had the urge to listen to it since regardless.

So they darkened his face, gave him a new guitar.... and changed his shoes? And also the chair? They had to adjust his arm so it's resting on the top of his new guitar, but now that new arm position isn't anatomically correct. Can't unnotice it now...

2L-04652a_1.jpg

I feel like this original cover art requires some sort of explanation. What sort of creature is this even? Where is it going/ what is it doing???

bd828c89c61c6896386acb3602924bb3.1000x10

Is this the actual start of the drone/ doom sound? I actually do like to know these details.

 

Edited by modmyth
Another Very Important Question: Can you even buy platform shoes like that in this era?

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