September Banner and Music

Although I'm sure most people have the completely opposite reaction, WAKING LIFE was the first Richard Linklater film that really made a big impact on me.  I had seen DAZED AND CONFUSED and SLACKER at that point, but neither film did much for me at the time except to go, "meh, it was okay."

But WAKING LIFE felt like a dream ripped from my own head.  The stream-of consciousness dialog, the beautiful computer-generated rotoscope animation, and the pitch-perfect score courtesy of the Tosca Tango Orchestra all combined to make something that spoke directly to me.  The image of Wiley Wiggins, floating in the air after touching his car became an indelible moment, especially when scored with Iggy Pop's "The Passenger" in the movie's trailer.

Of course, now I go back and I love SLACKER and DAZED AND CONFUSED, as well as his other films, but this was the one that got me there.


Over in the Head Music section, it's pretty much all recent music.  I'm sure no one really needs to be reminded of either Arctic Monkeys or Jet.  Of the two I really love the Arctic Monkeys' Humbug - it has a dirty, more straight ahead vibe than their previous two albums, which I'm sure is due in no small part to the contribution of producer/Queens of the Stone Age guru Joshua Homme.  The new Jet record, Shaka Rock, is okay - it's a lot different than previous album Shine On, which I seem to be alone in loving.  It's a little slower, a little less energetic, but I'm hoping it grows on me.

Over on the much heavier side of things is Behemoth, your basic straight up Death Metal courtesy of Poland.  I won't even try to convince anyone not into metal to give these guys a try, but for the record I think Evangelion is their cleanest, best produced album since Zos Kia Cultas, great solos, great riffs, and more of the same lyrically, which is to say a lot of wacky stuff about religion and old gods and other stuff I can't understand without a lyric sheet in front of me.which is saying a lot.

Finally, stuck somewhere in the middle are two bands I'm really diggin' at the moment.  Keelhaul were very recently introduced to me, and it's a crazy mix of rock/stoner/noise with a healthy dose of what's commonly referred to as "math rock" - angular, odd time signature riffs and lines that jump all over the place.  Keelhaul's Triumphant Return to Obscurity is a loud, fun bunch of noise that doesn't take itself too seriously, but plays like a riot.

Bloodhorse sounds like an evil band, but in reality they're a noise/stoner band with a lot of classic rock undertones.  Great drumming that moves all over the place, sludgy riffs and a lot of forward propulsion make Horizoner one of my steady players at the office.

What are YOU listening to at the moment?