29 March 2005

Picked up some new music for the first time in a while. It used to be I'd buy about 3 CDs a week, and I'm not sure why that stopped, although I have a few ideas:

  1. 3 CDs a week on graduate student income = huge unsustainable credit card debt
  2. Having a kid limits chances to listen to music other than Barney sing-a-longs (OK - Barney was banned in our house, or at least on extremely limited work release). The child factor also limits exposure to new music in bars or clubs.
  3. I reached saturation.

So now we (another sign of age: your music purchases are no longer your own but rather joint purchase between yourself and significant other; actually this is good because it indicates an affinity of taste conducive to harmonious listening experiences) buy maybe 1 CD every other month or so. I think last few purchases can be listed:

And lastly, the one I want to talk about:

We picked this album up after seeing the video Burn to Shine, which is also great. Burn to Shine is a video of 8 local DC groups/performers playing live in a soon-to-be destroyed house, and one cut is The Evens's "Mount Pleasant Isn't," a beautiful tribute/elegy for the Mount Pleasant neighborhood that could have been (maybe could never have been), in some ways was, and in some ways is.

I've been listening to this album almost continuously for a week now. It's a spare sound, with only Ian MacKaye's guitar and Amy Farina's drums backing their vocals, but it's haunting at times and invigorating at others. Like many good lyricists, these two have conjured up images oblique enough to keep you guessing at the exact meaning of the songs. Take for instance the following lines from "Shelter Two":

Went to Arlington Hardware to buy some electrical tape
It's all downhill from here
You went to Tulsa and I'm going to wait
It's all downhill from here
Not as direct as bottled violence, but there you have it.

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