in this issue page 4
lancaster’s hidden gem alyssa giannini talks to one of her favorite artists from her hometown
bloodturnt & sunburnt jeremy garber lists his favorite death metal bands for summer
the best two weeks of summer mary luncsford reflects on moments early in the season
an interview with moon bounce the miscreant asks corey regensburg about his latest record
songs for a summer sadcase olivia cellamare provides a playlist to sweat to
town sounds like barbeque nick haines discusses new musical discoveries in new paltz
zoo bar, london summer 2011 colleen bidwill remembers dancing to top 40 hits
spaces between: on touring as a non-musician christopher lee shares his tales of hitting the road on emily reo’s and cuddle formation’s utourpia
a conversation with teen girl scientist monthly cassandra baim talks to one of her new favorite bands
institute at lulu’s ben bondy shares photos and some thoughts on a recent performance he saw in booklyn
new york // berlin : a playlist // retrospective jazz adam recounts her recent adventures in germany and songs that remind her of her trip
self-love reina shinohara gives a playlist and some movies that remind her to celebrate herself
the leftovers: the frogs (1972) kyle kuchta provides a his thoughts before, during, and after watching a film that was sitting on his shelf for a while
LANCASTER’S HIDDEN GEM by alyssa giannini
Have you ever heard a song that hit you in a weird place, and you just had to listen to it on repeat for a few hours? Well that’s how Tyler Burkhart’s entire music catalog feels to me, and I will now proceed to ramble praise for Lancaster, Pennsylvania’s most hidden gem. I met Tyler a couple years ago at a Halloween show at Motorboat II, a house I’d later move into and host numerous shows at. I think Tyler was wearing a moose costume. He introduced himself to me after French In Van’s set, as the brother of Clark, their drummer. We bonded over our love of French In Van, and I didn’t learn til later that Tyler also made music. Fast forward to November of 2013, I booked Tyler on a variety show I was hosting, I had given his music a listen but it didn’t really strike me until I saw him play live. After the show, his song ‘orchids again’ was stuck in my head for weeks until it eventually drove me to download the entirety of his music catalog. The next time I booked him he brought a keyboard in addition to his guitar, and simply stated that he had figured some songs out for it and wanted to give it a try- low and behold it was awesome. He is such a versatile, talented musician. I’m in awe of his ability to create such beautifully simple layered melodies with perfect accompanying lyrics, and perform them so seemingly effortlessly. Not to mention he’s super friendly and thoughtful to boot, always remains in good communication/shows up early happily when booked, and makes pleasant conversation in the lull before the show. I had the pleasure of seeing him play with an accompanying band once and it totally blew me away. I told Tyler I was going to write this long diatribe and he obliged me in answering a few questions. A: What is your songwriting process like, how long does it take you to create a song? Tyler: As far as process goes, most songs start with the guitar. The amount of time I spend on a song varies, some take form in one sitting, others over the course of a few days. I have
scheduled times to sit and play music, during which many of the songs come about. A: What events, feelings etc inspire you to make a song? Tyler: I often write songs to reflect on something, or remind myself of a moment or realization. Sometimes a song exists as a point of reference, or some little world. I love to record a song, forget it, and then come back to it. That can be a wonderful surprise. A: What is your recording set up like? Tyler: My recording set up is pretty simple, all the instruments are recorded in my attic with a condenser mic. I enjoy the “limitations” of my set up in that I can really focus on melody and structure. A: who are some of your favorite bands/musicians? Tyler: I’m currently enjoying music by Parquet Courts, The Clientele, and my brother’s band Row. Some lasting favorites include various things by Cass McCombs, Bonnie ‘Prince’ Billy and Tim Hecker. A: How long have you been playing/writing music? Tyler: I took piano and guitar lessons from around 2000 until 2007. I’ve been writing songs since maybe 2010. I’ve only begun to feel confident enough to share songs written in the past 2 years. A: Is a tangible release in the cards for you down the line? Tyler: A physical release would be welcomed! It’s not necessarily a priority, as I’m more excited to write and share songs on a casual basis, but if the resources were made available, I would certainly make use of them. Tyler Burkhart’s music puts me into a pleasant, meditative trance that previously could only be invoked by artists like Elliott Smith or Alex G; who both, like Tyler, compose/d these beautiful songs as a sort of one man band, writing and playing all of the instruments on a given track. His music is also similar to theirs in the sense that it’s masterful but simple, literal but coy and not quite giving everything away. Capturing a feeling, a sense of calm. Calling it ‘sad’ would be a lazy injustice. My friend Danica says it feels like a splash of cool water on her face, I’d liken it to Mona Lisa’s mysterious smirk or the way the landscape looks sorta misty blue and dreamy at dusk or right before dawn. The moral of all this is, you should really give it a listen for yourself. I hope I can someday hold a vinyl record housing his music in my hands, or at the very least a tape! You’re looking at Lancaster’s best kept secret. A diamond in the rough-er music scene. Give it a listen at tylerburkhart.bandcamp.com. My recommended tracks include~ sad airplane, stone within, hibernator, april’s fool, hubris, flying charlie brown, unto leviathan, orchids again, your sushi is colorful. Happy listening!
BLOODTURNT & SUNBURNT by jeremy garber
What do summer and death metal have in common? Probably a lot more than you might have expected! For those not familiar, much of the genre’s origins can be traced back to Tampa, Florida in the late 80’s/early 90’s where bands such as Morbid Angel, Obituary, Death and Atheist created groundbreaking albums at Morrisound Recording, arguably the only studio at the time capable of understanding the complexities of recording such extreme music. For me, the juxtaposition of such crushing music being recorded amidst a backdrop of tropical palm trees and gorgeous skies always made me giggle. Like just imagine David Vincent screaming “Bleed For The Devil” on a perfect beach day. So while other genres of heavy music were birthed in places with bleaker, colder climates (see: black metal or drone/sludge), the Tampa death metal explosion was likely overheard by some crocodiles or flamingos or some other animals that I feel might have been native to west Florida at that time. And maybe that’s why I’ve always been attracted to the genre; there’s something strangely fun and uplifting to me about this visceral style of expression. Therefore, in celebration of summer, I wanted to reminisce on some of my favorite albums of the genre, in hopes that this piece might inspire you to turn off your pop-punk or trap or whatever for a second and feel the vibe of some relentless blast beats and fret board jujitsu. These are my five picks: 1) DEATH – Scream Bloody Gore - 1987 Death’s debut album is an important one. This is widely recognized to be the first death metal record EVER and the title track (the album’s closer) epitomizes the relentless tempo and balls to the wall approach that defined the style. My favorite moment is in the “chorus” when Chuck bellows “Scream Bloody Gore!” and then repeats the phrase again at the top of his register and literally sounds like he’s gargling glass. Good times. 2) GORGUTS – Obscura - 1998 I know I’m jumping forward in time a bit but Gorguts’ album Obscura changed my life. After being around for a decade, death metal received an unexpected dose of the avant-garde by some weirdos from Canada (without the luxury of a tropical climate). But seriously, anyone who doesn’t take the genre seriously, I refer to this record because it’s just as complex, forward thinking and unbelievable as something Stravinsky might have composed. 3) INTERNAL BLEEDING - Voracious Contempt - 1995 I grew up going to a lot of shows on Long Island and there was a really unique fusion of heavy stuff going on whereby death metal bands were influenced by NYHC, started adding groove and slowing their roll a bit. There’s the legendary Suffocation, but Internal Bleeding always stood out to me as being simply razor-focused in their execution of “slams”; disgusting, palm-
muted breakdowns accented by pinch harmonics and steady double-bass triplets. Yeah, idk – you might hate it. 4) CARCASS - Heartwork - 1993 It’s almost impossible to cover the genre in only five albums without including Carcass’ Heartwork. It’s an absolute milestone of the genre and arguably the first melodic death metal album ever recorded. These guys recently put out a comeback album and I had the opportunity to see them live. Bill Steer is hands down one of the most underrated guitar players of all time – he is like a death metal Hendrix. This album continues to sound so fresh because it perfectly merges classic death metal stylings with bluesy guitar solos, slower rock tempos, refined songwriting and an overall cleaner, more polished vibe. 5) NAPALM DEATH - Harmony Corruption - 1990 Legendary grind outfit, Napalm Death, did this record with Scott Burns from Morrisound and though fans were mad at the time that it didn’t sound like Scum or From Enslavement To Obliteration, I think it’s incredibly underrated. Mick Harris’ classic blasts are still here, but it’s a meaner, more focused sounding Napalm. The production is so real and the band’s imperfections give it unmatched character. If only young heavy bands realized that conveying personality with your music always trumps digitally enhanced, quantized bullshit. Well, at least Napalm is still doing their thing and seems to have no intention of slowing down.
This issue is brought to you by important documents.
Single of the
Our single of the week comes from Moon Bounce’s latest release Dress Rehearsal. Could listen to the first single “Shake” over and over again -- here’s a catchy, grooving medoly that hums over an erratic drum beat. It delicious! But don’t watch the music video with the lights off -- so spooky! 8
THE BEST TWO WEEKS OF SUMMER by mary luncsford
I’m standing on the train platform, looking at my favorite city. It’s dark and the lit-up buildings contrast beautifully with the sky. As people push past me to try to catch the train, I know I’ll remember this forever. This perfect night has me feeling nostalgic for the present. I look over to Lanie, who can read my mind, and she grabs my hand. Just then, a train stops in the opposite direction and a guy asks me why it’s so crowded. I tell him Vampire Weekend just played a show. He asks if it was good. They opened with “Diane Young” which caused the crowd to rush closer, eliminating any space that was left between people. For the first two songs, we were a mass of moving particles. As “Diane Young” exploded into “nobody knows what the future holds, but it’s bad enough just getting old,” the release of tension from the crowd was kinetic. We were mostly kids on the verge of adulthood, and I think we all understood exactly what VW meant. The show went on with that same energy through “Cape Cod Kwassa Kwassa” and “Step.” As we danced, I thought about how the week before, Lanie and I had been in Columbus. We had gone to Ohio to see Bastille—our favorite UK band at the moment. They didn’t disappoint either. We jumped and danced through their set despite the fact that we were actually really dehydrated from our non-air conditioned drive. Our hearts melted when front guy, Dan Smith asked if we “could be bothered to dance to this next song.” Even though they’ve gained a lot of popularity in the US, they still behaved like a band just happy to be playing anywhere—lots of “thank yous” and “this is so mental!” We left that show floating on air, and incredibly in need of water. When it was time to make the drive up toward Chicago for Vampire Weekend, we were seasoned veterans. The show had been amazing. I’ve always loved VW, but seeing them live, I really got a sense of the timeliness of their music. It’s all about that strange place in between everything. Their songs so perfectly accompany the transition from youth to wisdom—being fresh and new and then world-weary and smarter. We’re not quite there yet, but we’re well on our way. The rest of the night melted together and we’re running through the city trying to catch the train; we’re in the car at 2 a.m. looking for donuts; we’re throwing Raisinets at each other in the backseat. I guess at some point it hit me that this is my favorite part of being 19. It’s the idea that life and adulthood and change is all hard, but there are still shows and best friends and latenight snacks. There is the city at nighttime and the guy asking if the show was good. It was. It is.
The Miscreant: When did you first start making music? Corey Rosenburg: I started writing songs when I was around the age of 13 or 14; mostly a lot of four-chord guitar tunes with horrible, lyrical metaphors. There was a period of time when I was really influenced by bands like The Blood Brothers, The Dillinger Escape Plan, Pg. 99, The Locust etc. and I played in a zany, heavy band in high school called A Dire Symphony with my current manager, Jeremy, on drums. Though I look back and cringe at a lot of what we wrote, I do feel proud that we contributed something a bit outside of the box to a scene that was becoming increasingly more predictable. The Miscreant: What, or which artists perhaps, drew you to making electronic music? Corey: When I was a freshman in college, I was introduced to M83, specifically their first self-titled album from 2001. I couldn’t believe how evocative and hypnotizing an instrumental album could be. I’d never heard anything like it. The extremely emotional chord progressions paired with warm, eerie, and unreal textures really did it for me. I knew I wanted to make electronic music at that point. The Miscreant: With your latest release, Dress Rehearsal, you struck out on your own and released it independently. How did you come to that decision? Talk a little about the label Grind Select. Corey: My manager, Jeremy, and I got tired of waiting for a certain label we were in conversations with to release it and decided to pull the trigger on something we’d been dreaming of since we were kids. I’m so glad Grind Select has finally coalesced into something outside of our own imaginations. Right now, it exists as a platform to release fitting Moon Bounce material as well as an umbrella company for management. We’re working with some really talented people to help flesh out the Grind Select brand through design, content curation and interactive experiences, some of which will be apparent in the next few months. We also hope to release other music we’re passionate about in the future through the label, but don’t want to draw too many lines in the sand, limiting what Grind Select can/will become. The Miscreant: What are you most proud of with Dress Rehearsal? Corey: I think my greatest achievement with Dress Rehearsal was establishing a tone for Moon Bounce. My previous releases were closer to experiments, rather than properly conceived albums. I don’t regret them, I needed to release them to get to where I am now, but they definitely exist apart from where I see Moon Bounce going. I basically just nutted up with Dress Rehearsal and told myself it’s ok to write pop songs.
The Miscreant: This album maintains your experimental nature, but really embraces the beauty of a good pop song. What inspired you to change gears? Corey: Ha! I love how fitting this question is. I didn’t look ahead, I swear! Prior to Dress Rehearsal, I think I was concerned with being challenging for the sake of it, without having any real direction. I had spent years writing much more conventional music for a band and needed a clean break from that to cleanse my palate. After sharpening my production skills, I slowly realized that I loved writing pop tunes, and didn’t need to be afraid of that. The Miscreant: Talk a little about the music videos that were released with Dress Rehearsal. How did those both come about? Corey: The video for “Shake” was a collaboration with director, Andrea Youth. He responded to a posting online where we said we wanted puppets, and we wanted it to be dark. He filled in all the blanks for us and made a killer fucking video that’s a reflection of the fairly bleak subject matter of the track. Also, it’s worth noting that Andrea is from Italy and English is a second language to him. It’s amazing that we were able to make it happen with limited communication. Internet! The video for “Whore” was created by Alex Brinkman, who approached my manager with a treatment for a video. We didn’t really have any idea what it was going to look like, but let him take a stab at it. It was a bit of a cryptic process but we were ultimately stoked with the final product. “Whore” is my favorite song on the EP so I feel good about having a visual tie-in for fans to experience. The Miscreant: Your musical following has really concentrated itself in Europe. Do you think the genre you fit in lends itself to that? Corey: I have no idea. It’s pretty weird to see all this support coming from places like France and Germany, while I have to reintroduce myself to promoters in Philly all the time. I stumbled across some French radio station’s top played chart the other day and I was in the mix with like Michael Jackson and Pharrell. Like, what? The Miscreant: How do you find yourself fitting into the scene in Philly? What is the electronic music scene like compared to the rock scene? Do the two ever meet? Corey: To my knowledge, there’s almost no scene for electronic music in Philadelphia. There’s the whole rave scene, of course, and an esoteric/analog obsessed crowd, but
nothing that really makes sense with what I’m doing. I’m totally into playing with bands and all, there just isn’t much crossover here. The main reason I’m in Philly is because it’s cheap and allows room in the week to work on music. It makes coming to play NY super special every time! The Miscreant: As your music has evolved, has your live show changed at all? Corey: For sure. Learning how to incorporate vocals is an ongoing process. I have a fantasy where I rock a sparkly pop-star head-mic and have some rehearsed choreography. We’ll see. The Miscreant: Outside of music, you’re also involved in theater. Do you find those two artistic endeavors inform themselves to you? Are your passions in any way connected? Corey: Sort of. There’s definitely a theatricality to the way I approach songwriting. However, there’s a huge divide between what I’m doing with music and the theater scene. To be perfectly honest, I’m so turned off by the majority of people involved with theater and the type of work they’re producing that it’s almost something I’m no longer interested in. One day, I’d love to bring Moon Bounce into a more theatrical/performative environment, without being tied to all the modern tropes associated with contemporary musical theater. The Miscreant: Are there any other artistic projects you’re pursuing? Corey: I’m starting to explore what it’s like to collaborate with other producers. I have almost no experience with that sort of thing, so I’m interested to see what comes of it. The Miscreant: What’s next for Moon Bounce? Any plans to tour? Corey: Definitely another few singles before the end of the year, then a proper album. A tour is looking promising for later this year, but you’ll just have to wait and see for yourself! The Miscreant: What does being a miscreant mean to you? Corey: Being a naughty girl! Maybe like dragging a stick along a metal fence or like knocking over mailbox. Into it.
SONGS FOR A SUMMER SADCASE by olivia cellamare
Summer is a bit of an issue for me, mainly because my wardrobe consists of band t-shirts. Black t-shirts. Everyone around me is wearing bright colours and I’m stood looking like a sadcase promoting their favourite band on their chest. However, I do like the summer but working in the city in the summer is not too pretty. If you’ve ever been to London you will have experienced using the tube (subway.) In the summer the tube is rammed full of people who need to shower and tame their rage. Okay so this is probably apt for the rest of the year but the summer just heightens all of this. There is nothing worse than sitting next to someone who smells like a wrestler’s armpit at 7.30am when you just want to get to work and stare at photos of dogs doing cute stuff. So how do I deal with this problematic season? Easy, MUSIC! These are just a small selection of songs that over the past few years I’ve associated with the summer even when it is unbearably cold outside. Troumaca – “Lady Colour” THE most glorious and gentlest summer track there ever ways. Their debut record is made for summer but this song in particular is the one I hold dear to me as it was the first song I heard by them (they used to be known as Scarlet Harlots and were brilliant then.) Lady Colour has beautiful calypso feel to it that makes you want to drink Long Island Iced Tea all day long whilst watching the
world go by. Lady Colour makes you feel as if you are swimming in the clear ocean, away from everything around you and you just float towards your own kind of paradise. It’s just gorgeous song and makes you create beautiful moments in your mind. Studio – “West Coast” This song is 7 minutes of bliss. If you find yourself in the midst of a blossoming romance this summer, play this song to your person and if they don’t react in a positive manner then get rid of them. You don’t need that kind of negativity in your life. This is the sort of song you just laze about to. I play it about 5 times at work and letting every part of the song take me elsewhere. Offices aren’t made for the summertime. I know nothing about Studio, but I do know that West Coast is one of the best songs I’ve ever heard. Let this tropical gem take you on a blissed-out trip to nowhere in particular. Keep your eyes closed. From the 4 minute mark this song just turns into a work of art, it’s stunning. Crocodiles – “Me And My Machine Gun” I wasn’t sure which track to use by Crocodiles because quite a few of their songs have a lovely summertime feel to it. I went with “Me And My Machine Gun” because seeing this song live is euphoric moment. They are one of the few bands I could happily watch over and over again for the rest of my days. The guitar on this song makes you feel like you’re in a dream. A fuzzy filled dream that makes you feel like you’ve taken something you don’t want to share with anyone. I’ve wandered around listening to this song on repeat many times to know that it is probably one of their best songs. I discovered their music in the summer of 2009 and since then, they’ve just been producing amazing records and putting on mind-blowing shows. Me And My Machine Gun is the song you need to listen to as dusk starts to fall. Watch the sun fall away gently to this song. Best Coast – “Boyfriend” Bethany writes the songs you wish you heard when you were a teenager identifying with every episode of Seinfeld (GEORGE AND ELAINE FOREVER.) The drums at the start of this song just make you immediately think “ROAD TRIP.” If I could drive, I’d blast this out of my car everyday driving to nowhere in particular. It’s got a lovely, hazy summer feel to it. All of Best Coast’s songs have that feel to them, but for me “Boyfriend” is the one that stands out the most and I’ll probably be singing it loudly when I’m 90 years old in a nursing home trying to make my way to the beach. Say Lou Lou – “Maybe You” I must mention that there’s a Good Night Keaton remix of this song that you need to listen to. I could happily list all of Say Lou Lou’s songs as summer tracks, but I’ve gone with Maybe You as I feel it is their most relaxed song. Have you paid attention to the lyrics in Beloved? Bloody hell. So sad! Did I cry? A little. Leave me alone. I’ve many feelings. Maybe You came out when they were called Saint Lou Lou, and it is still my mission in life to get many people into this band. There’s a line in this song that takes me back to a place that I try to avoid, but nostalgia can get to you at times, but then you look back with a lopsided smile and realise it is all okay. Maybe You is the perfect song to play at night when you’re alone wishing it would cool down a bit. It’s such a beautiful and heartfelt song. I just really love Say Lou Lou. Also, listen to their song with Good Night Keaton called Sweetness Alive. That’s a number 1 summer jam for sure. Janet Jackson – “That’s The Way Love Goes” Who doesn’t love this song?! This is one of double J’s best songs EVER. I’m not really a fan of Janet but this song is the first song I remember hearing by her, and I’m quite glad I never asked what she was singing about because I think it is fairly obvious now, but who cares! Janet’s voice on this is so seductive. Okay there’s nothing Summery about it I guess, I just really love this song.
I love the music to it, and I’m sort of wishing I wasn’t paying any attention to the lyrics now! The video has Jennifer Lopez in it, and anything with Jennifer Lopez in is fabulous (okay some of her films were rubbish, we all make mistakes.) Let’s all praise Janet’s dancing in the mirror and choker thing she’s wearing in the video also. BLESS YOU 1993. Poolside – “Slow Down” I found Poolside by accident once when I couldn’t sleep and decided to stay up listening and finding new music. This became a song I’d play on repeat until I fell asleep. I listen to it at work and immediately think “NAP TIME FOR ME!” Sadly nap breaks aren’t a thing, but I live in hope that they will be. Anyway, Slow Down is the ultimate beach song. I have mixed feelings about the beach. I grew up living within 5 minutes of it, and probably took it for granted and still got bored of it. Now I’m nowhere near one, all I want to do is sit and do nothing, possibly people watch and listen to my favourite songs. Slow Down is the song to do it to. Even in the unbearable and blistering heat this song makes you grateful for the sun. Play it and do nothing. Warpaint - “Disco//Very” I’ll be honest, I don’t think this the one I’d choose right away as my Warpaint Summer song, but I just love it. I love that Jenny sings on it, I love the words and how upbeat it is. It’s a playful battle cry that I cannot get enough of. And yes, I would probably like to marry Emily Kokal or ask her to sing to me all the time. Warpaint are the kind of band you want to be part of. You want to be on stage with them as they go wild to Elephants or in the studio with them. You just want to be in the midst of what they do. “Disco//Very” has this awesome Hip Hop beat to it, that probably comes from Stella’s drumming. It’s one of those songs where you can’t really explain why you love it, you just do. A massive smile appears as soon as you hear them chant “I’ve got a friend with a melody that will kill, she’ll eat you alive.” If you’ve seen this live, you will know just how nuts the crowd goes. It’s an infectious song that makes you want to dance in a questionable fashion. Solange – “Losing You” I’m not someone who goes out dancing, but if I did and I heard this, my moves would clear the floor. I’d be demanding space for my arms and legs to move so freely and wildly. There is something about this song, even though the lyrics are sad, that just makes you really happy. I’ve watched many live clips of this (the one where she brings her son out to dance with her is the best) and her face where there’s a brief instrumental and she dances with a huge grin on her face just makes you want to do it. I pretty much listen to this song on a daily basis, and it’s just got a wonderful summer feel to it. The kind of song you want everyone to be blasting out in the uncontrollable heat moving in whatever way they wish. There is something so freeing about this song. It just makes you want to dance; it’s made for the summer. It’s got a real street party vibe about it. Jessie Ware - “If You’re Never Gonna Move” Jessie Ware and Hollie Cook are the best singers in the UK, trust me on this. Jessie Ware is my generations Sade. She’s got the soft and soulful sound that is found in Sade and of course, Aaliyah. If any singer has managed to do what Aaliyah did, then it is Jessie Ware. If You’re Never Gonna Move samples Big Pun which is pretty much a good enough reason to love this song. If You’re Never Gonna Move is the song you play as nightfall emerges, and you just need something to soothe your soul and to send you on your way. To be honest with you, the Devotion record is pretty much like that. It’s one of the best debut records I’ve ever heard. Her voice is so beautiful, she makes you wish you could sing. But, If You’re Never Gonna Move makes you want to dance which I think for most is the safest option. Play these songs as loud as you want, and have the best summer ever!
TOWN SOUNDS LIKE BARBECUE by nick haines
1. New Paltz, NY usually gets quieter in summer due to the exodus of most SUNY students, but alas, this year’s repose has been interrupted by some inventive, heartfelt, and thoughtful releases from natives of and converts to the town. 2. I wrote about all these works over the last few weeks and then one weekend read a whole shit-ton of one 20th c. philosopher and upon returning to this work found what I had written inadequate. What follows are scraps from the earlier writings mingled with some questions from relevant thoughts and readings. As it turns out, I deleted most of my attempts at describing the actual music (“Music conveys to us itself!”), and what’s left is a spattering of fragmentary impressions. Regardless of the hurdles words are always up against, lend your ear to these killer pieces of music. Where to find them is obvious. 3. ARTISTS/ALBUMS REMINDED OF WHILE LISTENING TO THE FOLLOWING (NO PARTICULAR ORDER): Failure, Satyricon, Leonard Cohen, Joan of Arc, Shai Hulud, Pornography, Hope Sandoval, QUARTERBACKS, The Beach Boys, Vampire on Titus, Sunn O)))), Reach the Sky, Grinderman, Porches., Sparklehorse, Neil Young (After the Gold Rush), Tortoise, White Pony 4. ACTUAL POINT: Fraternal Twin/Long Beard -- G h o s t G r a d u a t i o n When you listen to a song and tell someone that the song made an impression on you, what do you mean? What is the impression made of? Is the impression itself able to make further impressions? Is the impression material or immaterial? Is it the fingers plucking the strings, the decision-making involved in what strings to pluck and when, the various machines used to record and transmit the sounds, my eardrums, my nervous system’s responses to the eardrums’ gatherings? These are two solo artists recording each other (I think) (only one from New Paltz). What they have recorded are gorgeous tape-hiss-infused vibrations (which hiss comes regardless of listening
medium). This suggests some Vampire-on-Titus-type themes regarding medium-as-message and context-as-content. I imagine the recording device as one of those big battery-powered Radio Shack tape recorders that after a while you’d have to duct tape the battery compartment because the plastic notch would break off. This sometimes reminds me of Basinski’s Disintegration Loops wherein one literally hears audio of a tape loop disintegrating. I also see them recording outdoors with maybe a little wind. At once distant, relatable, and stunningly intimate. What Moon Things -- s/t I strain to resist saying emo-goth or goth-emo or emo or goth or shrew-graze for these are useless categories in describing a particular case. When one person hears music and it reminds that person however vaguely of some other music, what happens is assumed to be understood. What kind of overlapping of experience occurs when this happens? What is the experience of reminiscence and what defines positive and negative reminiscent experiences? And what happens when a work reminds one of itself? Isn’t much art designed to create this specific type of recursive experience, in which meaning is deepened by the relation of the old experience to the newer experience? Or what exactly is being deepened in the previous sentence? In what form comes recognition? This is one of those records that employs its own internal method and logic. It creates a sea, breaks the surface, snaps its jaws, repeats and is over. Pummeling yet sensitive, brash yet pristine. Good to listen to when aching or just driving. Wet Petals -- s/t I have listened to this with particular attention. When I say I have paid close attention, it is uncertain what this attention is and what it does. When I attend, do I imbue whatever is there with something that is not aural but mental? Is attention a material or perhaps information in itself? Exactly how much of my experience is mental and not aural? How much of this is just autobiography? I believe that it has shown me something new. What that something is, I remain unsure. Sounds are moistly distorted and amorphic. WP has been playing shows for a while now and their shows include everything that is great about live music. Especially in basements. It is for feeling unhinged. The lyrics are poems headed for good anthologies. 5. “We are inclined to say that when we communicate a feeling to someone, something which we can never know happens at the other end. All that we can receive from him again an expression.” --LW
Slackgaze presents Dream Pop Prom Gingerlys (EP Release) Lavachild
Franny and Zooey The Bright Sides Exiles
Monday, July 14 8:00pm
Babyâ€™s All Right 146 Broadway, Brooklyn
ZOO BAR, LONDON SUMMER 2011 by colleen bidwill
I looked up from my spot atop a black couch, to see a hand outstretched at me. “I want to dance with you,” an older man mumbled into my ear, barely audible over the bachata music banging in the background. I must have heard him wrong. Or he must have not seen me earlier on the dance floor, where I unsuccessfully mingled amongst the seemingly expert dancers. I’m sorry America, I wasn’t holding my own. The men poised with their backs completely straight, wrapped arms tightly around the waists of women who swayed their hips with rhythm, to the notes trekking around them. The men would take control, and without warning, spin, and dip their partners, who would break out in a smile. The pairs would be in synch, as if they had been dancing together for years, step-bystep in line with each other. They never missed a beat. They never faltered. Bachata had a way of connecting strangers, even for a brief song. It was one of those moments when for once I wished I wouldn’t stand out. And yet, I knew it was otherwise. There are some things you can’t fake. Like Shakira, my hips don’t lie. There was a reason I was sitting down. I leaned back against this couch, and just took everything in. It was easy to get lost in the music, lost watching these people move, until a man’s outstretched hand brought me back to reality. The bar itself had two separate floors, each with various rooms, with various genres of music. You first walked into the blaring Top 40 hits, which later turned into throwback Destiny’s Child. The kind of music that you stand beside your friends and belt out every lyric at the top of your lungs. Down a set of stairs, you made your way into the electronic dance music and dubstep, where dancing seems to be more characteristic of flailing and bouncing straight up and down. Where guys don’t ask you to dance, but rather grab you, and you rely on a nearby friend to give you a thumb up or down. Certain music makes you feel like a good dancer. Or maybe it’s because you’re also surrounded by people who can’t dance well or people who don’t care how they dance. But for once, I had to watch instead of participate. And yet, this guy still wanted me to try. “You should dance with my friends,” I responded, motioning to my two roommates, Fabiola and Sade who were out there on the floor, occasionally giving me a smile and wave. I watched them for a couple seconds before adding to the man, “They’re much better dancers than me.” “I know,” he quipped back without a beat. Oh, so he had seen me. The brief flattery that he still wanted to dance with me, even after witnessing my moves, wasn’t enough to get me off that couch. Some things are better at just witnessing rather than experiencing.
SPACES BETWEEN: ON TOURING AS A NON-MUSICIAN by christopher lee
“Are you a musician?” I’ve just come back from a month-long tour with two of my favorite people, Emily Reo and Noah Klein, who also happen to be musicians with real tapes and records and bandcamps. Emily plays as Emily Reo and Noah plays as Cuddle Formation. I don’t play as anything. Touring as a non-musician is a strange thing. While the stress of loading in, playing, and putting yourself out there is considerably diminished, there are also serious downsides, the worst of which is being ignored constantly. Despite whatever confidence you might have in your sparkling wit, interesting projects, or social ability, some people just won’t give a shit about you. Maybe that’s okay, but it doesn’t feel great. “What do you do?”
I don’t identify as a musician, music writer, or show-booker—not because I don’t care about those roles or haven’t occasionally tried them on, but mainly because I don’t consider them the primary markers of my reality; and besides which, still understand ‘occupations’ to be the language of pollsters and parents. But it can still sting a little to be asked whether or not I play music—because even as I generally say “no,” “not really,” or ‘not seriously,” I also think about ten years of piano lessons, five of music theory, and several sad iterations of ska-punk cover bands that I both regret and bear shamelessly as my teenaged history. “Do you play music?” It’s an innocent question that betrays some not-so-innocent assumptions about what it means to be a musician—because while I technically ‘play music,’ and mostly know how, I don’t do it sincerely, ambitiously, or with any intent. This question wouldn’t play out with any personal consequence except that answering it evasively or figuratively results in some people writing you off, walking away, or worse yet, pretending that you’re not literally right next to them, breathing the same dumb air. I play this awful game a lot living in some of the smarmier pockets of Williamsburg: avoid telling people what I do, where I hang out, or who I know, in hopes of demonstrating how little social capital I offer them, and, more importantly, how few fucks I truly give about proving my relevance. It can be a humbling thing, then, to tour with performers, and to be dismissed frequently and completely; and to be asked by a well-meaning norm if you are a ‘roadie or a groupie’; and then, subsequently, to take stock of your decisions in full—why and how your life has led you to trap yourself in a car, carry gear, and sell other people’s things for no compensation and little recognition (though, sometimes you might get a drink ticket, which is actually kind of nice). None of this was a mystery to me before deciding to go on tour, and despite my foreknowledge, I knew it would be worthwhile in my own narrow scope, which meant seeing a bunch of places with friends that I liked and for reasons that I hadn’t yet figured out. The rest would come together. “So, what’s your band’s name?” When I decided to go on tour, I also started thinking about an anti-tour diary, documenting all of the things that happen just outside the highly guarded and prized domain of performing— because even on a month-long tour with over thirty dates, the vast majority of your time isn’t occupied with doing anything vaguely show-related. Most of your time is spent just being together, tolerating each other, fighting a little, and feeling a lot. All of us seemed to accept this immediately, and despite my vested interest in visiting DIY venues, and despite many, many shows with radical, talented, and considerate people, the highlights of our trip still seemed to show through in all of the spaces between music, in small towns and state parks, friends’ homes and shared meals. “Are you playing tonight?” A tour itinerary laid out in its barest structure can never hope to capture the full weirdness of driving across North America —from the Pacific Northwest, to the Southwest, up through the Midwest, into Canada, and back into the Northeast. And a list of dates and places certainly
misses all of that time between shows, which can tend to overshadow the albeit considerable novelty of experiencing live music. Even when you respect your musician friends, care about their success, and want to help them achieve it in any way you are capable, fifteen to twenty shows in, you may want to escape, to a place where you don’t have to shout just to be heard. I was able to do a lot of escaping, in part because the ‘musicians’ I toured with were grounded enough to realize that, beyond playing music, listening to it, and supporting it, they are also humans with human needs and desires—desires like eating a vegetable, seeing a waterfall, and hugging a dog. We did those things, sometimes in that order. “Where are you guys staying tonight?” Touring as a non-performer can be difficult and uncomfortable, and you might end up in some funny places, and in some funny headspaces. You might sleep on a pile of towels that you lovingly call your rat’s nest and you might start to mime a rat pawing at soft fabrics with your hands and you might even dream of becoming a rat and having rat friends who play little rat keyboards. You might eat at Chipotle a lot and somewhat less often at Subway. The greatest gratitude will almost always be reserved for those hosts who open their homes to you, who offer you a clean towel or a comfortable couch or laundry (!), and who kindly overlook how long you haven’t showered, how bad your feet smell, and how much stuff you’ve brought into their living space. That so many of those friends we encountered along the way had some stake in music didn’t seem to matter, ultimately—save for the fact that they, too could relate to the difficulty of plotting a month-long tour without a dedicated show-booker or an excess of funds. More importantly, though, we were able to see their environments and communities, where they’d grown up, and how they’d developed their creative stakes, perhaps even before they’d considered music as an organizing identity. “Where are you guys playing next?” The funny thing about obsessing over an occupational ‘musician-ness’ is that it somehow minimizes even the experiences of musicians, who themselves come from places and backgrounds and bear complicated histories. Emily is not merely Emily Reo (FL) and Noah not just Cuddle Formation (CA), though these identities might comprise large portions of their creative force and social media presence. Emily is also a meticulous planner, an amazing photographer, and a person who thinks about death more than anyone I know. Noah is a brilliant thinker, an equally brilliant writer, and a virtually unbeatable Mario Kart player. On long drives I’d sit behind them, cramped in the backseat beside our pile of things. Taking wide turns would topple this stuff-pile, pinning me against the car door in a comical and futile way; but most of the time we took straight, scenic roads, and I’d rest my head against a suitcase, dozing off, and waking up in new and unknown places. In those moments my life felt small and manageable, having something to do with music, and nothing at all.
anti-tour diary 6/5—Portland, OR find a rose that smells like gummy worms and one that smells like balloons 6/9—Salt Lake City, UT play wii u for three hours 6/10—Grand Canyon Village, AZ stare out into the vastness of the grand canyon and consider the smallness of existence do not fall in 6/13—Fort Collins, CO emily orders two half orders of nachos asks to be charged for one full order 6/16—Omaha, NE go to saddle creek records purchase two records eight pins a poster and a tote bag save receipt for future reference teen dream realized 6/19—Minneapolis, MN stare out into the vastness of the mall of america and consider the smallness of existence noah rides a spongebob-themed rollercoaster emily purchases a blow dryer we all eat at the food court 6/23—Grand Rapids, MI i was born in michigan and return as a twenty-seven year old to have the best sandwich ever 6/24—Royal Oak, MI visit the house my family lived in meet a baby born at the same hospital as me twelve mosquito bites 6/29—Burlington, VT long talk about sleep paralysis and lucid dreaming 6/30: Saratoga Springs, NY last time we saw sammy he was in a coma and now he’s not and now i hug him really hard
MEET TEEN GIRL SCIENTIST MONTLY by cassandra baim
I found Teen Girl Scientist Monthly this past January. I’d run out of money for what felt like the trillionth time in a year, and I was also out of inspiration for my own work. Spotify told me to listen to some band with the coolest name I’d ever seen, and the rest is history. To me, Teen Girl Scientist Monthly sounds like a conglomeration of Los Campesinos!, Clap Your Hands Say Yeah, Ra Ra Riot, and a handful of my other favorite bands. Beyond that, though, their music is bombastic and original, and never fails to leave me in a good mood. Last month, I went alone to see them play in Williamsburg. I never get nervous about seeing shows alone anymore (I’ve even written about that in the past), but they were so much fun and so engaging that I forgot I had no one to dance with. I recently chatted with them, where we talked about their evolution as a band, their artistic influences, their new record, and (my favorite topic of conversation) how they came up with their excellent name. Check out their website (http://teengirlscimo.com) and their Bandcamp (http://teengirlscimo. bandcamp.com/) to hear their latest record, We Run With Gangs! C: How did all of you meet and start making music together? TGSM: We stole each other from our favorite local bands. Pete runs Brontosaurus; Mel leads Boy Girl Party; Bergs and Gliva and Morgan were in the Hey! and everyone just always played with and loved everyone else. Teen Girl is a meeting point between all that and whiskey. C: What are the greatest things about having so many people in your band? What are some of the challenges? TGSM: Car space is pretty tight. We all smell ok though so WHEW. Everybody brings their own ideas to the table, which makes the music better. Berger basically writes nursery rhymes and the Pete and Gliva say, that’s awful - here’s an idea; and then Morgan and Mel sing the hell out of it while Dan breaks the drums.
C: You have a seriously great name. How’d you come up with it? TGSM: Thanks! Morgan got a magazine offer in the mail when she was like 10 or 11 - but her parents wouldn’t buy the subscription because she was “too young.” We’ve looked online for it since then, but we’ve never found it. We like to imagine that you could buy microscopes from ads in the back and learn how to make time machines. C: Who are your most profound influences, musical or otherwise? TGSM: Profound! Our moms probably. Berger cut his teeth on Pixies covers, and he’s always crushing on Clap Your Hands Say Yeah! and Orange Juice. We want to sound like Guided By Voices but it comes out more like the New Pornographers, if that says anything. C: I saw you at Cameo in Williamsburg last month, which was a great show! What was the best live show you ever played? Or, alternatively, what was the worst show you ever played? TGSM: Thanks dude! Glad you were there. That night was a lot of fun. There have been a lot of “best” shows - we always enjoy playing in Brooklyn and with each other. We played Northside this year, outdoors on Bedford and like 200 people ended up watching - that was a pretty rad experience. Alternatively, we played in Austin during SxSW our first year together at a coffee shop by the airport. C: As a band based in Bed-Stuy, how does the Brooklyn music scene influence your music? TGSM: To the extent we’ve found some amazing bands to play with and cheer on, we’re incredibly influenced by Jackpot Tiger, Ghost & Goblin and just basically all the bands we play with and watch work. Day to day, watching bands that play rough, uneven, new music is the best thing any scene or band could ask for - and everyone in BK’s got a band. As for capital B capital M Brooklyn Music? It’s a melting pot, and it’s become a sort of buzz genre now. We’re specific about Bed-Stuy, where half of us live, just because Brooklyn is a tag Rolling Stone and Pitchfork use now to describe music that sounds to us like everything and anything from anywhere. Blah blah blah - short story? It’s great to play music somewhere where music means so much to people, and zines like the L Mag and the Miscreant are digging on the good stuff. C: What are you listening to currently, old or new? TGSM: Demos mostly! Other peoples music - Isn’t Anything, My Bloody Valentine; Parquet Courts’ last three records; everything by Twin Sister, all the time, anywhere, even when you sleep, especially when you sleep. C: Where to from here? You’ve been playing a lot of NYC-area shows recently, but do you have any plans to tour? Are you working on anything new? TGSM: We got a new album we’re working on! It’s called HYPER TROPHY and we’re recording it through June and July. It’s nice to be working on new music that almost no one’s heard. We’d love to take the record on tour once we’ve finished. We actually played four or five of the new songs at that show you were at!
INSTITUTE AT LULU’S by ben bondy
I think it’s safe to say that the current state of punk is the most venomous, volatile, weird and artsy it has been in a long time. One of the most important places to look right now for important and culturally revelatory punk music is Texas. In the past the fine state of Texas has produced venomous and volatile music like Mammoth Grinder, Hatred Surge, and Power Trip just to name a few, but this recent surge of punk and hardcore coming out of Texas is much more centered around a purist approach to punk. Bands like Glue, Back to Back, Dress Code, and Institute are all working with a primitive set of skills, and a powerful catalog of classic punk records to look to for inspiration. I recently caught Institute play a gig in Brooklyn at LuLu’s in Greenpoint with fellow Austin band, Breakout. Breakout delivered a set of OI! mixed with 90’s and early 2000’s Boston hardcore before Institute’s set. Institute takes the anarcho hardcore sounds of Rudimentary Peni and runs them through the post-punk-political-affect of Crisis. As goth and death rock as they can be, institute is at it’s roots a punk band-featuring members of Glue and Wiccans. Institute is carving a bummed out, abrasive corner for themselves within the current punk fringes, and the results are sonically and culturally important to the current climate of punk music.
NEW YORK // BERLIN : A PLAYLIST // RETROSPECTIVE by jazz adam
1. At a certain point, misery becomes comfortable. I have an obsession with anti-humor, where the comedy is presented in order to make the audience cringe because it is so awkward, strange, or disgusting. It seems my fetish for the uncomfortable has manifested itself into a twisted celebration of unhappiness. For example, I often go to shitty parties where everyone is either boring or disinterested, while being too drunk to notice or not drunk enough to care. I take pleasure in being the asshole getting stoned in the corner of the room who makes fun of everyone else. I have a hard time taking ownership of my emotions. When I am in a situation that is bad, I spend a lot of time trying to find reasons why I’m bringing the unhappiness upon myself. I have a hard time accepting sadness, so I can’t even allow myself to fully experience the feeling. I think it’s because I’m convinced that it is important to be constantly stimulated and having fun. The hedonist within me is a monster that I cannot seem to destroy.
2. â€œIsnâ€™t it crazy that I had to fly 8 hours to have a real conversation?â€? I remember making this comment nonchalantly, half drunk and half clairvoyant, to two American kids from Bard I had met that same day. I sat in a bar called Twinpigs, drinking potent cocktails, and talking of things I was barely able to articulate to my closest friends back home. We spoke of gender, politics, humor, friendship. I felt ignited with positivity by the unfamiliar, and feeling these kids throwing back realness quelled my usual social anxiety and ennui. Even though I realized the kids I met were a hair younger than me, I saw them as mentors. They held an enviable amount of maturity and confidence that warmed me up. Eventually, our small American group migrated over from the couches to the actual bar area. The bartender, an attractive energetic young Chilean man, was very friendly and chatted us up right away. It turned out that he owned the bar. He was an architect who designed the bar all on his own. He clearly had incredible taste in music, as my friends and I were beckoned into the bar by the sweet soul music blaring through the windows of the establishment. The bartender and I got to talking about Tropicalia music. Before I knew it, the bartender relinquished control of the music choices to me, and I played my favorite 70s soul and Tropicalia hits. Everyone at the bar really dug it. Through the drinks, laughs, and engaged conversation, the bartender somehow offered me a job to DJ his bar for pay. I had been searching for a shitty entry level job in NYC for the past 6 months, and I was offered my dream job after being in Berlin for 2 days.
3. It was my last night in Berlin. The memories I had made with the group of young Americans swirled around in my head. I wished there was someway I could make my memories tangible as I felt them slip through my fingers. I sat on a bench at a bar called Klunkerkranich. It is an outdoor bar located on the roof of a mall, accessible only through the mall parking lot. I sat in awe of the Berlin landscape that sprawled around me. It was 11pm, and the summer sky did not become fully dark until midnight. My eyes were fixed, and a stupid smile was plastered on my face as I shared a joint with Ian, one of the aforementioned kids from Bard. Apparently, you can smoke weed anywhere in Berlin and no one gives a rat’s dick about it. As we smoked, Ian and I discussed many things. Mainly, we mulled over the content of a playlist I made for the DJ set I was hired to do that night at Twinpigs. Eventually, we came to the unavoidable subject of my departure. “I think you should leave New York. That’s just my opinion. You should never settle for people who are assholes to you.” And now, I’m awake. 4. Eye on the prize Life is long The brain is a muscle Same shirt, different day Fuck sleep Awkward is okay Smiling hurts my jaw Cut your losses People like soccer Nice does not equal good When you vibe, you vibe Drink wine in a shopping cart
5. Berlin Playlist: “Les Cactus” // Jacques DuTroncs “Preta Pretinha” // Novos Baianos “River to Consider” // White Denim “It Gets Funkier II” // Vulfpeck “Que Sera” // Wax Tailor “Summer Breeze” // Isley Brothers “Across 110th Street” // Bobby Womack (RIP) “Let’s Ride” // Q-Tip “Cérebro Eletrónico” // Gilberto Gil “Violet Stars Happy Hunting!” // Janelle Monae “Summer Party” // Breakbot “Paws” // Forth Wanderers “Cough Cough” // Everything Everything “Gemini (MAXO remix)” // Sharpless “Take U To Da Movies” // Bangs
by reina shinohara
I like myself the way I am. The other night I learned a really important lesson about self-love. I’m not going to pretend it was some profound experience. To set the scene, I was at home feeling lame, sitting in bed eating ice cream at 7pm, binge watching early 2000’s feel good movies from Legally Blonde to The Prince and Me. The best explanation for why I felt like such a loser is that I did, and somehow I knew the only things that would make me feel better were to eat an entire pizza and watch a collection of slightly comedic romantic movies with a strong female lead. That being said, I watched a movie called Penelope starring an adorable Christina Ricci with a pig nose. In a pivotal scene in the movie, Penelope half-shouts to her mother, “I don’t want a whole new me. I like myself the way I am.” Suffice to say, after that point everything starts looking up and the movie ends happily. But I think the fact that I’m still thinking about this says a lot about the so-called power of self-love. In a society where I’m constantly told that I’m not good enough the way I am, it was exactly what I needed to remember. I don’t need to be anything other than what I already am. The early 2000’s were a golden age for self-love, but for those of us who struggle to love ourselves daily, here’s a list of 10 songs to remind you that it’s important to love yourself: “This Is Me” – Demi Lovato “Nobody’s Fool” – Avril Lavigne “Mean” – Taylor Swift “Who Says” – Selena Gomez “Perfect Day” – Hoku “Pretty Girl Rock” – Keri Hilson “Unwritten” – Natasha Bedingfield “Who Said” – Hannah Montana “Warrior” – Ke$ha and of course, “Beautiful” – Christina Aguilera
THE LEFTOVERS: FROGS (1972) by kyle kuchta
The Leftovers is my mission to go through all of the movies on my shelf that have been purchased but remain unwatched. I will give you the story behind the movie as well as what I think of the movie, and some other stuff along the way. My Story: This is something I wouldn’t usually do. But I’ll do it and it’ll be done in an hour and a half. Much like 976-EVIL, I saw a Frogs t-shirt on Fright-Rags. I thought the poster was one of the funniest things and I HAD to find the movie. Lucky enough, the library had it. I took it out and hadn’t watched it for two weeks. Much like if I had to buy the movie, but it’d probably be more like two months. This should be good. My Thoughts: I would hate to go into this movie NOT knowing it was about killer frogs, you know? I could almost feel the disappointment if the title wasn’t so blatantly obvious. Oh boy, here’s the environmental aspect. Litter, water pollution, God save us all. Okay opening credits, I understand that the swamp is made up of reptiles and trash. I get it. Why are the French subtitles automatically on? Sam Elliot was in all denim when his canoe tipped. That’s god awful. Mr. Pickett Smith? Hahahaha, Will Smith’s wife? No, nevermind. “I have suggested pouring oil in the water to kill them off.” Is it too soon to make a BP joke? If Sam Elliot had his mustache in this movie, it would be so much better. WHO HAS A MOUNTED TIGER HEAD ON THEIR WALL?!?!?! That property is just a dead animal graveyard. Frogs and snakes and birds and…PEOPLE?! That dead guy is Bub from Day of the Dead. The father from Creepshow’s “Father’s Day” should pop in right now. How did that snake get onto the chandelier?
Gah, there are frogs everywhere! I thought there weren’t gonna be frogs in this movie! American Gladiators jousting on a log with pillows, YES. …why didn’t they just call an exterminator? Stop using the same shot of a frog. The rattlesnake was clearly fangless. If they put in another lengthy shot of Sam Elliot walking in the woods, I’ll cry. I would hate to be an animal wrangler on this film. Upon further review, this man shot HIMSELF in the leg, and then was attacked by tarantulas and Spanish moss. And one scorpion. There are frogs on the croquet field. Not okay. The highest-waisted pants ever seen. This is just the perfect 4th of July movie, Independence Day’s got NOTHING on Frogs. A LIZARD just spilled two glass jars marked “Poison” and they erupted in poisonous gas when they hit the ground and asphyxiated the man in red pants, Kenneth. That was THEN surrounded by Geico geckos and salamanders post-death. And THENNNN Sam Elliot walked into the green house and the poison gas had vanished. There have been no frog related deaths as of yet. But the 4th of July cake now has frogs on it. I’m pretty certain this lady is gonna get killed by butterflies in a minute. Woman landed in a puddle, yelled “owwwww” and keeps falling down. Maybe the frogs are the animals in charge of this war on people. Because frogs haven’t attacked anyone yet. A rattlesnake bit this woman Iris, and she already turned green. Immediately. I hope the end credits song is “Amos Moses.” It would go along with the fact that FROGS HAVE NOT ATTACKED A SINGLE PERSON. I’m just waiting for some sea monster to kill someone next. There is NOT a bird attack. No. No. IS NOTHING SACRED?! Oh my god, the lizard cut the rope for the boat! Now they’ll never get off the god forsaken dock. There is no way she can see from the porch, through the yard and trees and all the way across the pond to know that guy SOMEHOW got dragged underwater…BY ONE SNAKE. This film is rated PG, just in case you were wondering. “Watch out for the frogs.” THE FROGS HAVEN’T DONE ANYTHING! Really, you’re going to give the youngest kid the shotgun? Watch out for that one snake, he’ll pull you under the two feet of water you’re standing in Sam Elliot. Wow Mr. Crockett, you would lift yourself out of your wheelchair, fall on the ground, only to be surrounded by frogs FOR NO REASON. Zero frog related deaths in that film. Zero. The Verdict: Dreadful. Very slow and dragging and, like my last comment, no death by frog. In a film called Frogs that gets compared to The Birds, the film should PROBABLY be about frogs actually attacking people as opposed to influencing other animals to attack for them. But I guess the filmmakers were like, “Well…while frogs may scare some people, the can’t do much harm when they’re in some Florida swamp. Let’s make them fascist dictators and have them rule over all other swamp creatures…and KILL people.” Stupid, stupid, stupid idea. This wasn’t a fun bad movie unfortunately. Actually, I take that back. Some of it was pretty funny. But it would’ve been funnier if the title and cover weren’t so misleading. The trailer for the film gives a little more info though…so maybe I should’ve watched that first.