trinityvixen: (christmas)
Balloon Juice has a thread up calling for people to sound off on their least favorite Christmas songs. I don't have one. I have plenty of versions I don't like of this or that song, but no one song drives me crazy during this time of year. It is the aggregate of all of them being forced on me for hours at a time that bothers, not the songs in particular. When it's actually Christmas and I'm home with the family, I'll listen to anything, pretty much.

I have, however, found this thread immensely amusing and more than a little helpful. If my family does elect to go upstate for the holiday, we'll need some road music. I'm thinking I'll have to add a few of these numbers to my playlist. I will also say that, but for this thread, I wouldn't have heard Patton Oswalt's riff on what most likely is the worst Christmas song of all time:
trinityvixen: (Default)
Something that puts fannishness into perspective? Looking at things others are obviously fans of--that, in fact, I might be a fan of--and the merchandise associated therewith that is too ridiculous to be compatible with reality. Exhibit A: a "swim like Michael Phelps" Kinect game. I am a fan of Michael Phelps (....'s body), but this is pushing it. How much garbage do you expect his fans to swallow?

...which is "Hello, Ms. Pot, have you met my friend, the much-maligned Mr. Kettle?" talk that I ought to wink out of existence in a fit of cosmic irony, or something, given my earlier reaction to The Avengers trailer being released. I did promise to be more coherent, eventually, on that. (The other post is and will remain a CAPSLOCK paradise, I warn you.) Here's what I have to say, now that I can be marginally less giddy.

-For a movie that has only just finished wrapping, they've got some decent CGI shots already done. The Hulk is looking, well, Hulkish, but more The Incredible Hulk-ish than Hulk-ish, which is acceptable. There were lazers and some lightning for Thor. All of which could stand to be improved, obviously, but that they have that much is impressive. I mean, it could be a warning that they're rushing things--they have a trailer online seven months before the movie premieres, which is only about four months earlier than Captain America did--but I choose to have faith.

-They explained "the Avengers"! By which I mean the name, which, since [livejournal.com profile] moonlightalice brought it up--"What, exactly, are they avenging?"--has not failed to bother me. Stupid smart people with their words and things mucking up perfectly good superhero team names!

-Nine Inch Nails in the trailer: On the one hand, LOVE IT. "We're in this Together" is one of my favorite tracks from my favorite NIN album ever, The Fragile. The Downward Spiral is the most famous/commercially successful NIN album, but The Fragile kicks its ass in every way that matters. The songs are better, they make you feel more and more strongly ways about stuff, the entire album flows better, start-to-finish, and it is artistic while still being incredibly catchy. I'm a piss-poor music critic, but The Fragile is an album about which I get worked up, so it's good. "We're in this Together" is even used passably well in the start of the trailer. On the other hand, it's used incredibly poorly towards the end, with the twisted dialogue of the chorus being made into rah-rah nonsense. I mean, shoe-horning in the words "we're in this together now" to play over the images of the Avengers is just too on-the-nose. The riffs also don't work as well as a closer--it's too unfinished a sound. Maybe that's just me and me knowing that that riff is in the middle of the song. But they needed to transition it better.

-I see that Joss Whedon and Robert Downey Jr. go together like peanut butter and chocolate. Some of the lines felt a little forced, though. I worry about that. Joss' best lines don't go hand-in-hand with action scenes a lot of the time.

There. I said some things that didn't amount to typed flailing. I'm proud of me.
trinityvixen: (music)
I watched two movies this weekend, both of which had incredibly synth soundtracks--one of which I liked, one of which I was indifferent to. The latter was the music in Near Dark, a preposterous yet almost tame vampire movie starring everyone James Cameron ever hired in the 1980s except for Michael Biehn (sadness!). It is so 80s in its sound, in its everything, really. It reads as dated. Hilariously, however, its blu-ray cover has been muchos Twlight-ified, which you realize makes exactly zero sense after seeing all of ten minutes of movie.

The synth soundtrack to the other movie, Drive, is stupendous. I cannot tell you why or how, but despite working the same buttons on the same machines and producing the same kind of music, the sound is so much better. It perfectly suits the movie, which is in no way especially 80s otherwise (save the rather Miami Vice-esque font used for the credits). The dreaminess of the score and the songs that are highlighted fits the incredibly dark mood of the film perfectly. If you listen to one song, get College's, "A Real Hero." It may not have the same resonance without the contrast between the high praise of the lyrics--And you have proved yourself to be/ A real human being and a real hero--and the increasingly brutal actions of the character played by Ryan Gosling. But goddamn, if you see Drive and don't want at least half the songs you hear, I'd be surprised.

(Frankly, everyone should see Drive. Especially in the theaters. As with There Will Be Blood, Drive is a movie that benefits from your paying attention. It's a bit squirm-inducing and there are long stretches of build-up, but the pay-off is intense and well worth the price of admission.)
trinityvixen: (music)
Day 01 - A favorite song
Day 02 - A song that makes you happy
Day 03 - A song that makes you sad
Day 04 - A song that reminds you of someone
Day 05 - A song that reminds you of somewhere
Day 06 - A song that reminds you of a certain event
Day 07 - A song that you can dance to
Day 08 - A song that makes you fall asleep
Day 09 - A song from your favorite band
Day 10 - A song no one would expect you to love
Day 11 - A song that describes you


Aside from the few grandiose statements in this song--about how great Agnetha's voice is--I find that it describes me pretty well, specifically where music is concerned. This being a music meme and all, I thought that was appropriate. I'm infinitely grateful to groups like ABBA who, thanks to my Dad putting them on near-constant rotation when I was young, instilled in me a real love of music. Not one lick of idea how to make music, mind you. (I remain unconvinced by the existence of "meter," much to the continual consternation of my more theory-strong musical friends.) Just a real sense of joy in music. It makes me happy.

Singing, moreover, gives me a lot of joy. Some of my fondest memories are of driving with friends and singing--[livejournal.com profile] feiran  and [livejournal.com profile] viridian especially, seeing as both love to sing and do so better than I. (I'm louder, not better!) Or with my family, like when we drove back from Japanese steakhouse for dinner celebrating my sister's graduation and we ALL busted out with ABBA, complete with the dance moves. (My mom was laughing so hard, she couldn't breathe.) I'm sick right now and can't hardly talk without getting a tickle in my throat, much less sing. And even if I could get through a single line without coughing, it would sound horrible. This is a major bummer.
trinityvixen: (music)
Let's see, how long ago did I leave off with this one? Only, um, five months or so? That's not too bad. Where was I?


Day 01 - A favorite song
Day 02 - A song that makes you happy
Day 03 - A song that makes you sad
Day 04 - A song that reminds you of someone
Day 05 - A song that reminds you of somewhere
Day 06 - A song that reminds you of a certain event
Day 07 - A song that you can dance to
Day 08 - A song that makes you fall asleep
Day 09 - A song from your favorite band
Day 10 - A song no one would expect you to love

But...it's country. I swear, I can put up with rap a lot better than I can country. Mostly, I think it's the unnecessary twanging of country. This song is a particularly egregious example of that exact thing that drives me up the wall, but I quite adore it. Perhaps it's the grrrrl power of it? I don't know. I think I got this free from iTunes' weekly download, and it came up on one or another of my regular I'm-too-lazy-to-make-a-goddamned-playlist runs through my iPod's contents on shuffle. And I didn't skip it instantly upon that first "AAAAHVE." (It's "I've," for Chrissakes, country music!) So perhaps this song doesn't surprise some of you all, but it sure as hell surprised me.

Also surprising: I like just about every song off the Burlesque soundtrack. That's perhaps not the most surprising thing, since I have been known to like a Christina Aguilera song here or there. The Surprise: I kinda love Xtina's utterly unnecessarily sampling of Marilyn Manson's "Beautiful People" in her song of the same title. It's kicky and a little silly, but I never loved the original so much that I'm averse to her playing with it. Give it a listen. If nothing else, it's just a little jam that you will probably forget one minute after it's over. Maybe you'll actually like it. If you can overlook how every song off of Burlesque's soundtrack mentions "Burlesque," there are actually quite a few equally fun songs on that whole soundtrack.
trinityvixen: (music)
So close. I might have to go back and finish that long-abandoned music meme if I actually manage to finish this off by Thursday...

Day 28 - Movie with the best soundtrack

If I hadn't used it for a previous entry, I might have put The Matrix soundtrack up for this entry. However, though I did immediately request a copy of that soundtrack from my sister (who had the edited for content version, bleh-yech), the only soundtrack I've ever bought immediately after walking out of the movie was the Grosse Pointe Blank soundtrack.

Damn, but that Violent Femmes song was addictive. "Blister in the Sun" plays over the ending credits and it's absolutely fucking irresistible. I walked out of the theater and bought an overpriced CD from Barnes and Noble because I wasn't going to be able to get home without it. My mom came to pick us up (omg, I was une bebe, I needed rides home when this came out!!) and I unwrapped the disc and popped it into what was, at the time, still a novelty to me: the CD player in the car. "Blister in the Sun" kicked off the record, and we were off, never to look back.

Absolutely every song on this album is fun, though I cannot separate them from the scenes in the movie over which they played. Particularly hard to divorce from the scene in which it's featured? "Mirror in the Bathroom" by The English Beat, which features the line "Mirror in the bathroom, recompense/ for all my crimes of self defense" while John Cusack stabs another hitman in the neck with a pen. I mean, that is just never not going to be what I think of when I hear that song

I think is the best of all possible worlds with a movie soundtrack--kicky fun tracks that are well used within the movie. Special kudos to the excellent placement of both "I Can See Clearly Now" and "Live and Let Die," movie! I still love every track off of this, so it's definitely stood the test of time. And, since a lot of these songs were purposefully chosen to be from ten years or more before the setting of the movie (1996), the songs themselves have already done at least that much or more. Full soundtrack listing is here at Amazon, if you're interested. Well worth a purchase. The second volume isn't as good, but it's still extremely listenable.

Other runners-up I considered: The Wedding Singer, Forrest Gump, The Crow. All of those are excellent soundtracks, ranging from golden oldies to early-nineties rock, which is pretty much the last time I stopped thinking music was actually good. (Still like post-1990s music, but good? Eh.)

Previous entries:
Day 01
Day 02
Day 03 - 06
Day 07
Day 08
Day 09
Day 10
Day 11-13
Day 14
Day 15
Day 16
Day 17-19
Day 20
Day 21

Day 22
Day 23-26
Day 27
trinityvixen: (music)
At some point over my Christmas vacation, it became clear to me that I really don't know what the hell makes for popular music these days. My sisters were aghast that I hadn't hardly even heard of this (sp?) Kesha person, much less heard her song, "Tik tok" (again, sp???). True, that was mostly because it is apparently ubiquitous in all those venues I do not frequent--pop radio (never really listened to it, but I don't even listen to radio period any more), television commercials (I don't have cable), movies for people who comfortably fit into the description "tween"--but still. I am truly an Old.

Which means that I don't really recognize any of the songs I found in this mash-up. I kind of dig the mash-up, though. I'm going to have to go see if I can't do any better with the 2009 mash-up. Probably not.

One thing this sort of mash-up makes clear to me is that I'm not really missing all that much by not digging the current pop music scene. Any music that can be slotted together so easily, from so many different artists, cannot possibly be good. I know, I know, you could probably sync together all the songs from 1986, say, or 1994, or even 2003 (just to be totally random in selection of years from decades whose music I do like), and it would just as generic. What's popular at any given point is probably always generic, or at least predictably familiar. Hmm, now I wonder if anyone has synced up mash-ups for any of those years...
trinityvixen: (music)
New work continues apace--I'm finally doing SCIENCE!--and my former roommate gets married in under 48 hrs, but I feel like I've nothing else to contribute, really, aside from this meme I practically abandoned. Enjoy!

Day 01 - A favorite song
Day 02 - A song that makes you happy
Day 03 - A song that makes you sad
Day 04 - A song that reminds you of someone
Day 05 - A song that reminds you of somewhere
Day 06 - A song that reminds you of a certain event
Read more... )
trinityvixen: (music)
Day 01 - A favorite song
Day 02 - A song that makes you happy
Day 03 - A song that makes you sad
Day 04 - A song that reminds you of someone
Day 05 - A song that reminds you of somewhere
Day 06 - A song that reminds you of a certain event
Day 07 - A song that you can dance to

I DEFY YOU TO NOT START BOPPING AROUND IN YOUR CHAIRS WHEN YOU HEAR THIS ONE. I may not be the best dancer--my idea of dancing is roughly akin to spazzing out and hoping no one notices--but this will make me move, whether I want to or not.

I posted the live video because the official video disabled embedding, a, and Depeche Mode is ah-maze-ing live, b. I haven't seen many concerts, I'll be the first to admit, but of the few I've seen, Depeche Mode was the best, hands down. Their stage performance is not only good, but the energy is insane. INSANE. I wore these wooden heels to the show, ended up with no feeling in one of my toes--a condition that has persisted such that when I wear heels, I still occasionally lose feeling in that toe--AND I STILL REGRET NOTHING.
trinityvixen: (music)
Day 01 - A favorite song
Day 02 - A song that makes you happy
Day 03 - A song that makes you sad
Day 04 - A song that reminds you of someone
Day 05 - A song that reminds you of somewhere
Day 06 - A song that reminds you of a certain event

This song played, incessantly, during the New Zealand vs Fiji rugby match I attended during the 2003 Rugby World Cup. DROVE ME BATSHIT CRAZY because they only played the "dah-dah-dah-boom-ba-boom-dah-dah-dah" part over and over whenever the All Blacks scored. I mean, okay, I get it--Kiwi band, Kiwi team--but JESUS. I can't ever hear this song without thinking of that match, one of very few sports matches I ever attended willingly. It was fun, actually. Also? Rugby players have fine backsides, 's all I'm saying.
trinityvixen: (music)
Day 01 - A favorite song
Day 02 - A song that makes you happy
Day 03 - A song that makes you sad
Day 04 - A song that reminds you of someone
Day 05 - A song that reminds you of somewhere

I didn't discover too much indigenously Aussie music of any stripe while I was in the country, but I did get kind of addicted to watching footie matches, and it was impossible to end a game without hearing this song. It's good, and I bought a best-of collection for Hunters & Collectors, and I like a lot of their music now. I've even listened to more of other Australian bands that were popular then and now, like Powderfinger, but this is still the one song that immediately takes me out of where I am in the moment and back to my dorm, watching footie, ogling the boys.
trinityvixen: (music)
Day 01 - A favorite song
Day 02 - A song that makes you happy
Day 03 - A song that makes you sad
Day 04 - A song that reminds you of someone

Look, I'm going to give you all a break here. This is a song that I didn't even want to listen to, lest it be stuck in my head all day. But I had to be sure the YouTube video worked, and now it's stuck and I'm just trying to save the rest of you. Suffice to say, this song reminds me of [livejournal.com profile] feiran. Not because the lyrics refer to things that remind of her. Not because she introduced it to me. Not because we enjoyed this song together. (Lord knows, that isn't the reason!)

It's the song that reminds me of [livejournal.com profile] feiran because I never hear it ever, not EVER, without going, "God, remember that time when she used to..." YES WE REMEMBER. IT WAS AGGRAVATING AND WE EVEN DIDN'T HATE THAT [TELLING YOU WOULD GET THE SONG STUCK IN YOUR HEAD]!

So, click on the cut to find the song that I cannot even mention because even mentioning it was enough to get it stuck in my head. I swear to you folks: tomorrow WILL be better so help me.

Remember: this is feiran's fault. )
trinityvixen: (music)
Day 01 - A favorite song
Day 02 - A song that makes you happy
Day 03 - A song that makes you sad


Ouch, you guys. This one literally killed me. Not just the song, but the requirement. Because the problem with listening to songs that make you sad is, duh, you get sad. This song tore my heart out when I first heard it. I fell in love with Our Lady Peace--hard--in college, and Clumsy is still my favorite album of theirs. This song, about only realizing too late that you gave a shit about someone you thought you hated, brings up my every anxiety about death and regret ever. Because I'm a sap. And because I know that if my worst enemy apologized to me post-mortem, I'd totally forgive them for anything up to and including, like, killing my puppy. (THANK GOD I DO NOT HAVE A PUPPY.)

I have never actually seen the video for this song. But it makes it not better with the sad. It looks like the lead singer's smiling to keep from crying. Like his smile is so strained (probably by singing, okay, I acknowledge that much to reality) that it's going to crack. I have always loved how the lead singer's voice can go from smooth to piercing to rough in a second, and it sounds that much more raw on this track. Brilliant, painful stuff.

I almost went with The Cure's "There Is No If," which is a total tear-jerker about a dying man reminiscing about how he first told his lover that he loved her and repeating the same words to her as he's dying. And how she's in so much pain because she, quite literally, said that if he were to die, so would she. GAH, okay, have to stop, gonna cry now. ::takes deep breath::

The other one I considered was Ben Folds' "Brick," which breaks me with its small-scale human tragedy. One bad development spoils a love to which the singer was just fully opening up to. The really touching piece is that he won't let her go even though the abortion is driving a physical and emotional wedge between them. He's trying, but he can't fix it, and he totally breaks down. Breaks me, too.
trinityvixen: (music)
This will teach me to sleep without my eye mask--I got woken up at 7 am by the light and had so much trouble going back to sleep that I missed my alarm and woke up at 11:30. Awesome.

Of course, today, nobody needs me for anything, so it's hardly like I was missed. To prove it, I'm going to spend the next few minutes on continuing the music meme I started yesterday!

Day 01 – A favorite song
Day 02 - A song that makes you happy

It was a tough call with this one. I have several hundred songs that make me happy, though usually for varying degrees of happy, i.e. songs that make me happy because they feed my angry or sad mood. But there are two songs that never, ever fail to make me happy--actively, smilingly, laughing out loud for no reason happy. They're both, funnily enough, songs by The Cure. I give "Friday I'm In Love" the edge over "Just Like Heaven" because I've liked it for longer and it is even more relentlessly upbeat than "Just Like Heaven." Also because I finally caught a $10 Threadless sale so I could buy this shirt. I've coveted it for months and I was a good girl and waited until it was on sale and soon it will be mine, precious.
trinityvixen: (music)
Packing continues apace. As more and more of my things disappear into boxes, I become increasingly panicky for reasons not entirely unknown to me. I like my ordered little world. )

ANYWAY, as all that stressing under the cut proves, I need a distraction. So I'm finally working on a music meme that I spotted ages ago and acquired approval to steal from [livejournal.com profile] six_demon_bag. Let's play!

Day 01 – A favorite song


I knew nothing about Elliott Smith going into college save that he'd written that song from Good Will Hunting. Then some of the upper classmen in my suite freshman year invited me to go to his concert at the Beacon Theater. Wanting, desperately, to be seen as cool, I immediately picked up Figure 8, and listened to it nonstop so as to be more familiar with his repertoire come concert-night. (Concert was all right, not terrible, not great.) His songs have waxed and waned for me since then, but this one remains a dear favorite that I can never turn off once that opening piano and guitar riff starts up. It's a perfect lure.
trinityvixen: (thinking Mario)
What to do about this blog post? On the one hand, yes, the "girls can't play in bands" phenomena is so very clearly a problem. It's pervasive. I remember thinking I couldn't play drums as a kid because I was a girl. That, and the band director was like, "I let ONE person play drums. Try another instrument if you want to play. I only take the best." He said this. To fourth graders. Another fun story about this guy: he threw a stand over the clarinet section when he got pissed off. Yeah, I dropped band.

Point is, though, that there are music snobs, the worst of which are rock music snobs, and their elitism, because it is based on an industry that still finds female rock musicians to be "novelties," whether they're in a band with dudes or not, is among the most obnoxious form of sexism. I'm lucky I don't know people like that. )
trinityvixen: (win!)
On my way to work, this otherwise dreary, almost gothic sort of morning was brightened considerably by "Friday I'm in Love" coming up on my iPod. I had to bite my lips to keep from singing aloud.

I'm out for the weekend, going to visit my sister in San Francisco and to attend the baby shower. She was a tad bummed that no one leapt to go to the one she originally planned, but when she rescheduled, we were suddenly all available (not to mention more inclined to spend the money and time to visit since she was sooooo adorably happy that we could make it).

Also? She needs all the help she can get right now. It's T-minus one month until baby, and they still haven't come up with a name. You all might recall this little test of free association I did. I got the predictable response from fully half of you: I asked what you thought of when you thought of the word "Raiden," and most of you immediately jumped to Mortal Kombat.

The reason I made that poll? IS BECAUSE THAT IS SERIOUSLY WHAT MY BROTHER-IN-LAW WANTS TO NAME MY NEPHEW-TO-BE. My sister likes "Braden," but she jokingly said that if it's stormy when she delivers, it could be "Raiden." I leapt to conduct my scientific research so I could prove what an astonishingly bad idea that was. This weekend, I predict that we will spend much of our time continuing to dissuade them from that.

Seriously. Raiden? Even if his peers don't associate that name with Mortal Kombat (hey, the game isn't that popular now, to say nothing of five-ten-fifteen years from now), when he gets old enough to work, all the people who would hire him will be my age or older, and they will associate his name with Mortal Kombat. MUST STOP THIS FROM HAPPENING.

See you all Monday!
trinityvixen: (music)
I think I got most of the things right on my test. I have no way of reading my professor, though. It seems like I never intuit which of any hundreds of things you could say about a given process that he wants in a question. And there's no way to ask without him having to give away half the answer. So I tried to write absolutely everything, even though there wasn't space for it. I'm hoping I did well. I didn't really have too many questions that utterly stumped me. Maybe that will balance out the stuff that I wasn't sure about going into detail on.

I still have a take-home portion of the test to do. This kills me. I can't be done with my stupid exam while I've got part of it left. Why couldn't he just shoe-horn in more questions? Or, I dunno, take some out to make room for the take home stuff? Blargh.

Anyway, I finally have a bit of time again to do all the stuff I've put off for studying this past week, including the answers to this meme.

Answers to the Song Meme (unguessed songs in bold) )

Only two went unguessed. Well done to one and all. I think these were mostly pretty obvious, though the "pick your favorite line" part of the meme did make it a little tricky. Also, I apologize for that line from "Changes." No one understands half what David Bowie says anyway. It could have been worse? It could have been Eddie Vedder?

(By the by, I gave up on that points system since I seem to have been outvoted on what Three Dog Night actually called that song that they performed. So, whatever, everyone's a winner.)
trinityvixen: (fangirl)
Beating The Beatles: Rock Band wasn't hard except for the part where you have to play that last setlist. ("Dig a Pony"?? Are you fucking kidding me? Btw, I'm still playing "I Want You (She's So Heavy)" as I write this.) It's not a matter of difficulty, it's about geeking the shit out with Rock Band but, like, not because ZOMG PARAMOUR IS ON IT. It's like good music and stuff. (Caveat: see "Dig a Pony.") The Beatles, man. The only way Harmonix could possibly turn me into any more of a giggling girl is if they release Rock Band: Abba. (That way [livejournal.com profile] moonlightalice could get the keyboard part she's always wanted!)

So, yeah, we got to the ending video. And it was awesome. I also got to show the intro video to a crowd of about six-seven people who'd never seen it before, all of whom were entirely blown away. I mentioned that if Harmonix got together with a proper animation studio and wanted to make The Beatles: the Animated Series in the style of that video, I would watch it forever. No seriously, I'd buy another TV so it could be running in the background of my house or apartment all the time. (Future fascist overlords looking for a way to insert Big Brother take note! The Truman Show says what?)

This morning, a blog linked to the video, and I immediately went over to Harmonix's dedicated Beatles: Rock Band site to shoot them an e-mail saying that the animator who did that intro is amazing and needs to be employed for the rest of eternity. Preferably on that TB:TAS idea I had. PLZ 2 B MAKIN THAT HAPPN, HARMONIX?

I doubt I'll get a substantiative reply to this e-mail, for all that they promise that any one who writes in a request will get a personal response. (I know that because I already got the form letter telling me so.) But it would be nice if they would. Because I'd like to know that they understand how very much I love that video. A response would be lovely. Even if it came with a restraining order.

The video in question:


(There was a slight delay in posting as the video auto-loaded at their website and I was forced to watch it again. CAN'T LOOK AWAY.)

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