All posts filed under: review

Alive and alive again

There are some live performances that you need to sit through and listen to. From shaky lens to television performances, here’s some stuff I’ve been living through until we can get out and listen to music in all its life once again. (When I listen to music it’s the only time I ever feel like I am alone and am fully allowed to be. I haven’t gone to sleep without migraines or my head nightmarishly pulsating, but then I wake up and know that I have something here again…) Perfume Genius Live in the KEXP Studio, July 24 2017 I listened to this three years after its recording, off the masterpiece that was Set My Heart On Fire Immediately and discovering a new love for Perfume Genius, I needed to return to Mike’s earlier work. While touring the effervescent No Shape, performed in the aptly-lit and glittering studio with my favorite host, Perfume Genius opens off with Valley. It’s more gentle and nostalgic than the version on the record or on his Tiny Desk. You …

February’s loved things

Starting a series where I can document pieces of media that transform me, even for a bit. The Past Is a Grotesque Animal by of Montreal I saved a comment from YouTube’s audio-only playthrough of this song that just said: “have you ever felt every emotion at once?” I’ve only ever listened to Cherry Peel-era of Montreal works, which took place a good decade before this song was released. Seeing comparisons to Car Seat Headrest’s Beach Life-in-Death drew me to Hissing Fauna, Are You the Destroyer? in the first place. (This is of Montreal’s 8th studio album.) And wow, I can feel the influence, the reading off literary influences and hysterics to the clear psychedelic influences that punctuate the track. Kevin Barnes’ vocals aren’t particularly strong, but the composition of this piece is something else. It’s relentless and moving; you need to take this in with a serious listen to feel it enveloping you. I took a walk a few blocks around downtown New Haven, trying to feel the grandness of this album and tell …

A Defining Decade: Chia’s Top 100 Songs of the 2010s

Maybe you’ve read the Pitchfork or Stereogum lists thinking about how to encapsulate the way music transforms and shifts you; trying to figure out how it does so for others, figuring out what has moved you and what also excels technically. Lists are kind of shitty, and we can debate over patterns: why technicality and trends are at times praised over genuinely, or what truly defines influence in circles that are so secluded. In the end, there’s a common love and struggle in putting into words these inexplicable things that as easily divide as they unite us. There’s no reason to value my list. What I can offer however, is another take after seeing these 200 song-long collective curations–having lived this decade through music and records that were essentially formative. I sometimes recall the moment I was transformed and had found my first outlet in music in a summer in the Philippines, back in middle school, listening to America’s Suitehearts off Fall Out Boy’s Folie à Deux for the first time (when I got more …