August 3, 2010
The long-awaited Glass Bricks mini-album, Craquelure is now available! Our dream is to press it on vinyl but owing to the State of Illinois budget crisis, it looks like funding for all CAPP grants has been suspended and we were relying on the $1000 grant to make that happen. For now, we have some lovely little CD’s available featuring amazing artwork by Marvin Astorga. The CD contains 8 songs, a nice booklet of lyrics and comes wrapped in a Velum “glass brick.” The songs were recorded by Nick Broste at the Shape Shoppe in Chicago and mastered by Dan Augosto at Heart and Soul Studios in Skokie. We sell them for $5 in person but are happy to mail you one for $8 which includes shipping and handling. The way to do that is to pay Abby via paypal and include your shipping information! Remember that Abby is homeless right now so it might not go out in the mail the same day you order but shortly thereafter.
We promise you’ll love it! Check our our facebook for some sample tunes:
Purchase the CD for $8 (shipping included) by paypaling email@example.com and we’ll take it from there! Many thanks and enjoy the summer jamz!
January 18, 2010
Place name is a noun not much in fashion in our moment. There was a time, however (mid-late 19th century), when it was common parlance for distinguishing those particular proper nouns designating location. That we no longer relate to the significance of place names, to the extent that the word has faded from contemporary usage, is a fascinating topic unto itself. I first encountered the term Place Name and its weight of associations, reading Proust for whom the totality of lived experience can be located in these nouns. It’s resurfaced in my thinking lately as I’ve been reading about the short-lived socio-medical phenomenon of fugue in fin-du-siecle Europe. Overhearing mention of a random place name was sometimes enough to trigger an auto-ambulatory flight or fugue in young working class men, somnambulistic trips from which they would only awaken weeks or months later, in strange places, with little or no memory of their voyages.
Planning my contribution to the next Speakeasy reading series event, The Many Chambered Heart, I am compelled to revisit and reverse some of my early experimentation with Places and Names. When I was 22 and living in Brooklyn, I wrote a suite of small books about my dating experiences in the then relatively fresh and uncharted territory of social networking and online dating. New York Boyfriend was a pastiche of remembrances and correspondences. What I perhaps did not fully recognize at the time, but have come to appreciate in later years, is the extent to which this project explored boundaries of privacy and disclosure. Whether out of politeness or ethical imperative, the only way it seemed acceptable to share this information so frankly, was to omit the names of specific people and places. What I created then, was space devoid of names.
As the wisdom of years replaces the fire of my youth I realize that not only are places names embodied, but names themselves are places. Reversing the tactic employed in NYBF might be like arriving at a site through a different door; another entrance yielding a new orientation to that space. In this equation, the name, rather than elided scenery of the place, itself constitutes the space. The name, of a loved one, becomes a many chambered interior, a clearing in a woods on which to build a cairn, or any other conceivable environment to be inhabited. Loving is, in some essence, an act of taking up residence.
To that end, I will be debuting excerpts from this new project, Name Places, The Name, at the next Speakeasy reading on Friday, Feb. 19th here in Pilsen. More information about the event forthcoming.
October 12, 2009
For those of you who missed the book release party for Six Beaches Without and Ocean, I will be reading selections from it (plus other stuff) this Friday night, October 16th at the Workshop of Anne Novotny and Frei Designs in East Pilsen. For those of you who did come to the book release party, I promise to wink at you knowingly. Also reading will be Nicole Pollentier (poetry) and Abra Aducci (fiction). The event is free and well be providing some snacks and hot cider. It will be very nice.
August 11, 2009
My book, Six Beaches Without and Ocean is now finished. They are available for purchase or trade in VERY limited quantity. Each book is about 25 pages long, 5 x 7 inches, hand bound with covers (exquisitely) letter pressed by Reba Rakstad of Rar Rar Press get in touch with questions or trade/purchase requests.
What critics are saying about Six Beaches Without an Ocean:
Required night table reading for anyone who continues to lose sleep over the duality of content and form…
A genre-crosser of rare ability…-Rain Taxi
Like art…for people who read…-Fecal Face
A provocative meditation poised at the interstices of potential and plasticity…, a folksy re-visitation of a classic quandary: if an idea falls in the woods and no one is around to behold it, is it still a work of art?-Critical Inquiry
July 26, 2009
Outside the contents of a newly erected fence
grain and stain take on the scents
of close standing,
squinted, cropped longing.
On the other side of it is
a blue plastic bowl filling with grit and rain,
lovers on bikes holding hands as they ride,
dogs circling and then settling.
Over there is all the right kind of space for
Stevens to place a jar,
potted herbs to rejoin the earth and thrive,
bodies sunning and not burning,
May 19, 2009
Dating is quite exasperating, don’t you think? There is someone with whom I’d like to go on a date and In my imagination, I like him up until the point of the fantasy at which we have to sit down across from one another in some kind of establishment and have the very same obligatory conversation about who we are and how we messed up when we were younger and feel old beyond our years now and how our jobs are not a representation of what we want or who we want to be at all when really all we want to be is left alone to continue to drift aimlessly in an eternal adolescence, how as narratives, our families are awfully sad, and how we didn’t really come to realize that until recently.
I think what I’d rather do is spend a good first portion of the date in silence, quietly filling out forms. This form functions kind of like an essay exam in that it consists of a list of terms. The participant has to respond to the term, incorporating it into an introductory sentence and extrapolating from there for as long or brief as necessary. Then we will exchange the forms and read them – in continued silence-while tapping our pens to our cheeks, wincing, arching an eye brow here and there, occasionally curling the corner of a lip in a very warm way.
Topics For a Date:
Professions thought to have wanted
The fruit that best describes you
The fruit that you are or the one you want to be
The first person to have died
The darkest moment
Rain while its sunny
Fathers cooking and
Mothers cooking being something very different
Greatest humiliation to have realized
Smells of soaps
Going on a hike (to include the
Displeasures of walking both up and downhill)
This is only a partial list of course. Do feel free to submit your own! (in list form)
May 17, 2009
More from the musical archives. This song was recorded sometime in the spring of 2006 in Oakland California with one my favorite songwriters, Shayne Keator . I had completely forgotten about the recording until Shayne e-mailed it to me a few months back and then forgot about it again until today while digging through itunes for some other demos.
A song about being rootless, written in a time when I was:
April 14, 2009
Deborah Harry on Agonism, Historical Materialism and the Reproduction of Everyday Life.
March 26, 2009
I notice you’ve torn down the carriage house out back and
I was wondering if we could have some bricks.
Adow says you are getting a basketball court now well
my friend wants to build a patio
and could really use some bricks.
Your dogs hate my dog, my dog hates your dogs
Since that wall came down they can see and smell
each other so when I walk by I’ve got to hang on to my hands.
If we built a patio out of your bricks we could have a party
on the new patio and all the kids could come-
It’s cool, he has a truck, my friend
and I can help him load the bricks.
March 24, 2009
I am unsure where to begin this post. The romantic origin would be in highschool where I fell in love with my first boyfriend. He was always humming “Braineaters,” put “I Turned into a Martian” on a mixed tape for me and his band regularly performed “Astro Zombies” in filthy basements around our college town. A more recent beginning might be about a month ago when my dear friend Nat G-chats me in a mix of delight and dolor to inform me of Dave Pajo’s new project: an album of Misfits covers entitled “Scream With Me.” Which I suppose brings me back to the true starting point of this story, Halloween 2006.
Covers bands are of course par for any Warehouse Halloween Party course and Nat, Gram and I (still good friends, but also roomates at the time), formed a Misfits cover band for the occasion. We named our band Omlette of Disease (after the lyric from “Where Eagles Dare”- as an aside here, Misfits lyrics are TRULY the gift that keeps on giving. Once you actually slow down and listen to them they yield unending laughs of awe).
OOD only played two live shows, though I’d like to think they live in infamy (a wink here to those who were there). We are all huge Misfits fans, of course, but embraced the true spirit of a covers project, playing up the sugary structures of these bizarre, tasteless songs, rendering them, literally a de-fanged mess of 60’s and 90’s twinged pop that I think we’re proud to admit wold horrify the horrifying Glen Danzig. I don’t think we got through a single practice without fully dissolving into laughter on the floor at some point. We wondered how we could possibly tell our mothers about this fun project with these song lyrics.
Omlette of Disease recorded the material for an 7-song EP in the summer of 2007, again with captain Golden Gram at the production helm. A lot was going on at that time, including my move back to Chicago and circumstances forced us to shelve the project until a later date. That date has yet to come. In the meantime, I wanted to share several of the unfinished mixes. Just for fun.
Below are three Omlette of Disease covers performed by myself on bass and Vocals, Nat Russell on guitar and lead vocals and Gram Lebron on drums, vocals (and shredding on “Attitude”). Gram Recorded all these songs. I am also including, for your listening pleasure, the Misfits originals so you can delight in all the deconstruction as much as we did! Click on the song titles to play!
(OOD Photos by Ryan Junell)
The Misfits Sing the Misfits:
Also, Glen Danzig in his library is not to be missed:
Post Script to anyone who might have been wondering if I still bother to make music anymore. The answer is yes. My current band is called Glass Bricks, featuring John Shin, Kate Walsh (formerly of Pocket Parade and Speck Mountain ) and Albert Schatz of Bird Names and Scalpels . Shows, recordings coming this summer, when I finish grad school.