I couldn’t help myself so went to the Monks of Doom website and found some video clips of their performances. Do not ask me why I induged this curiosity, for I cannot explain why I could not leave well enough alone.
BUT! One of their songs was unusually compelling. Here it is for you tonight.
In other news, I’ve been working on a new project which I think some of you will love. I can’t tell you about it quite yet, but I promise I will. More on that later. Soon, actually. Before the semester ends… Stay tuned!
When I was a sophomore in college, “Flip Fantasia” came out and became basically one of my favorite songs. I’m not sure it’s ever fallen off my Top 10 list.
Toward the end of the semester, the Honors College was having its annual dance — a bunch of college kids in the basement of the library dancing in dim lighting, etc. etc. etc. — and one of the upperclassmen on the periphery of my social circle was DJing. We had all brought our own CDs for him to play tracks from and could give requests. I brought this one and asked him to play it.
He grimaced. “You can’t dance to that.” Oh, his dismissiveness.
I thought, What? Are we going to have another four tracks of Devo? (Not that Devo isn’t awesome.)
“Come on, just play it,” I said. “This is totally danceable.”
He wasn’t into it, and I had to wait a long time to hear it, but eventually he did play it. And lots of people danced.
I will be the first to admit that I’m not really a fan of Leonard Cohen. Sorry. I mean, I love the song “Hallelujah,” but I really like the covers of it more than his original, no matter how many dozens of verses he penned.
Have you been watching the third season of American Gods? It’s a really good show — intense, and generally excellent — and based on a really fantastic book by Neil Gaiman. Of course, they’ve gone fairly far afield from the novel by this point. Anyway, this song accompanied the end credits for one of the later episodes in this season, and I’m just not sure there could have been a more fitting ending to the shit that went down in that hour of television.
If this is Holy Week for you, it’s the darkest and most (appropriately) morbid time in the liturgical calendar. And if you’re celebrating Passover, well, that was kind of a dark time, too. It’s a time of sacrifice, perhaps unquestioning and certainly (for some) unquestioned.
Personally, I’m a big fan of the more cheerful and festive and optimistic springtime holidays. (Happy HolI! And Happy Belated Equinox!) But I can’t deny that to have balance we have to acknowledge all the aspects of ourselves, and we are not 2D, flat characters in this life. We are light and dark, we are happy and sorrowful, we are cheerful and morose. We are also everything in between at one time or another. And it’s okay and even important to recognize that.
So here, have an eerie and maybe kind of frightening tune. And later this week, prepare for April.
And what is April here on my blog? A celebration of National Poetry Month! You can look forward to my Poem-A-Day series starting up on Thursday, April 1st. (Please note that while these poems are going up, most other features on the blog, such as the Monday Earworms, will go on hiatus. But never fear, they’ll be back in May.)
Until then, good luck getting this creepy ditty out of your head. (If you need help with that, let me know, and I will prescribe some Sting, which I have to admit has been absolutely branded into my brain the last week or so OMG. I swear some of that dude’s songs are so romantic it’s unfair.)
Sting recently released a new album, this one of duets, sung with a lot of top-notch artists, of some of his past loved songs. Here is one delightful track from it, “Englishman / African in New York,” sung with Shirazee, who is from Benin. It’s wonderful.
My first year of college, my friends and I listened to a bunch of unusual music, entertaining stuff with a skewed sense of humor. We had dunked ourselves well and truly into the alternative-music waters of the era. One night, my friend AJ convinced me to join him and a few others at the student center for a King Missile concert. I was not super familiar with their music, but the concert was quite memorable and a lot of fun. (Of course, I would probably have enjoyed whatever they put up on the stage that night after the opening act, which was Monks of Doom — a band I’d never heard of before and absolutely the weirdest and most incomprehensible concert set I’d ever seen.)
Here’s one of King Missile’s songs, “Pickaxe,” which was a hit at the time. This really odd sense of humor was definitely their brand.
I saw U2 live in concert a few years ago at the biggest stadium in Houston. Like, going in there was literally like walking inside of a hollowed-out little planet. It was my first time to see U2 live, and the thing that astounded me the most was how those four guys FILLED the place with sound. Just them, no backups. Pretty amazing.
This is one of my favorite of their songs.
In other news, I’m grading and working on report card comments. A lot. Peace out till all that’s over with.
I love this song, and every once in a while it earworms itself in my head. Now it can do that for you as well.
In other news, sorry not to have posted one last week. We had…um…some weather, and I didn’t have power. Fortunately, all those power-grid shenanigans led to your getting one more chance to sign up for my class on building stories through character, which has been rescheduled for this coming Saturday afternoon! There is still room in the class, but do sign up soon, since registration will close early Friday. You can learn more about the class and sign up for it here.
Sorry I didn’t get this posted yesterday. Life in quarantine is both hectic in how many parts of your routine you have to be constantly adjusting, and plasmic in how oddly viscous and slow the pace of that routine can be. I suppose I could use the word elastic to describe how flexible we need to remain. I suppose I am also a little worn out by the routine.
Either way, I didn’t want to skip a week entirely right now, and this song has been on my mind lately, as I remember the time before the pandemic and look optimistically toward a time when it is managed. And maybe it’s also a time to consider pop stars who have been maligned (fairly or unfairly).