Friday, October 25, 2013

An Overall Feeling of Meh.

Thank Jesus no one actually reads this.  I made this big to-do about "I'm BACK!"  Then I created a few posts and abandoned this place for a couple of months.  Well, no fear, non-readers!  Real-life obligations had to be attended to, and it's ridiculous for me to make any sort of creative commitment in the fall anyway.

I've been listening to "Hesitation Marks" nonstop, of course, and even saw NIN at the Verizon Center in DC with Iris, which was a fabulous time, but describing my feelings about all of that feels like a lot of work, and it's a Friday night, and I'm bored, but not in the mood for actual work.

It's very frustrating to me that I don't have a consistent online presence.  There was the real me, writing and blogging in my 20s, and now there's this me, barely disguised as Trent Reznor's deceased canine companion, and if he's aware of any of my former WTC or PP activity, he probably thinks I'm the biggest fucking asshole, but it was just a screen name for a crazy message board, I swear!  A screen name that got a little out of hand for a while.

Sometimes I think about those heady days when my heart and my soul and my deepest secrets were in this ether.  Times when I disappeared into this kind-of, sort-of alter ego because my real life was completely tanking.  The question is, has anything actually improved?  Or have I just become better at coping?  Or just more adequately medicated? Or maybe when you get older, you get better at accepting the completely unacceptable. 

"Hesitation Marks" hits my heart in strange ways.  Maybe that's why I've been hesitant (heh) to actually write about it in any depth.  

"Disappointed" would be one of those tracks I typically skip over, but one afternoon, I had it playing in the background while I was doing some very tedious task, and the following words hit me and shattered me like a brick flying through a window:

look at you
with all the world 
to save
you'd think by now
you'd figure out
that nothing's going to change

can I ask you something?
what did you expect?
so disappointed
with what you get
did you ever want to
just get out of here

And to think, lyrics aren't even really Trent's strong suit!

To avoid any future disappointment, I've got some plans for future posts.  They just probably won't be published at a rate appropriate for a person who's serious about blogging.

Monday, August 19, 2013

Oh so Trent's Got a New Song, Huh?

NIN fans are LOSING THEIR SHIT over this one:

It's a happy, upbeat NIN other words, it is the END OF THE WORLD.

It's gotten to the point where some people are demanding that this song be removed from the album and replaced with some old song they prefer.  LOLOLOLOLOL  I'm sure Trent and Co. will get right on that.

I have to admit, this song was quite a surprise.  But I really like what he's doing with the melody and the 80s pop sound.  It's definitely a much easier track to embrace upon first listen than "Came Back Haunted."  I know this is a departure from Trent's usual style, but why should he (and NIN) be limited expressing the following sentiments:

--I'm sad
--I'm angry
--I'm angry that I'm sad
--I'm sad that I'm angry
--I'm horny
--I'm sad that I'm horny
--I'm angry that I'm horny
--Being sad and angry makes me horny

Now when it comes to documenting the above emotions, Trent is a MASTER.  But I think we should keep our minds open and allow him to explore other aspects of the human condition.   A person has every right to not like any given song.  (StarFuckers Inc. = BLERGH)  But it's cracking me up that people have such angst over Trent releasing what sounds to be a peppy, feel-good song.

You don't HAVE to go on this particular journey with him.  The old albums are still there for you, if that's what you prefer.  As for me, I can't wait to hear the rest of this album.  And laugh at the goth hysteria.  

On Lady Gaga, "Applause," and the Expiration of Shock Art

In case you need some nightmare fodder...that Gaga Swan! I love Lady Gaga, but I'm worried that she's locked herself in a "shock box." She reminds me of Marilyn Manson--and not just because from certain angles, she looks like she could be his sister. Manson just wants to write songs about drugs and his latest break-up, like any other musician, but his identity is too tied up in the make-up and "alternate, unedited" versions of his videos featuring little people who snort cocaine while riding taxidermied animals as MM himself chews shards of broken glass. If he stripped himself of all that nonsense and released an acoustic album as "Brian Warner," now THAT would be shocking.

Gaga has practically stripped herself down to her skeleton, and we've seen her naked as a jaybird, but it still doesn't feel like we've seen her soul. Her music has never been as innovative as her visual presentation. She produces catchy pop music that you want to dance to at clubs with your gay BFF.  (If you're 23 or under. Once you start creeping towards your 30s, fuck it--you just want to stay in and watch TV.) The music seems to be supplemental to the sexy horrorshow imagery.  Around the time of "The Fame" and "The Fame Monster," it seemed that she was a pop star who was at least doing something different and interesting.  She may still be half-naked and twerking, but at least she's surrounded herself with little people snorting cocaine while riding taxidermied animals as she chews shards of broken glass.  Two albums later, and it feels repetitive and, sadly, boring.  

Like Amanda Palmer, Gaga is trying so hard to MAKE ART. Art is certainly not effortless, but it should LOOK effortless.  Maybe it's the disconnect between the dance-y pop music and the desperate need to make it all look significant.  Maybe she's not going far enough...that Gaga head on a swan body is TOO MUCH, however.  Maybe she should focus her considerable talent away from songs about her cell phone and being famous and give us a glimpse of the REAL Stefani Germanotta.

I won't lie, though, the "hands bra" in this video for "Applause" is incredible.

Thursday, August 8, 2013

Just About the Best Video Ever Made...

The Bryan Cranston cameo takes this over the edge.  Since it's just me talking to myself for now, there's going to be a LOT of Breaking Bad discussion.  With myself.

Maise the Twit

I had abandoned my Twitter account for about three years, feeling that I had lost interest in anyone's 140-character thoughts.  Plus, Amanda Palmer and Neil Gaiman seem to be hell-bent on killing the Internet with their INCESSANT CHATTER...OH MY GOD, SHUT UP, SHUT UP, SHUT UP!!!!  I admire and respect them both, but Jesus Christ almighty!!!  Do they ever just talk on the phone or have face-to-face conversations?  Do they watch TV or go to the grocery store?  Their inner monologues are just tweeted all day and all night!  The simple answer is that I should just "unfollow" them if I don't want that much exposure to them, but I kind of enjoy marveling at how they NEVER stop Tweeting.  I sort of love to hate them at this point.

Neil and Amanda, I'm a fan.  This comes out of love.  Consider creating a "mystique."  A quiet mystique behind which fans only get the tiniest glance.  When I fall in love with someone, I don't want to know EVERYTHING about that person all at once.  I want that person to be an onion of secrets, and I can gradually peel back the layers.  Not that onions are very sexy.  I just can't really think of anything else that comes off in layers like that.  Anyway.

So yesterday I was looking back at my own limited Twitter persona, and I realized, God, I'm kind of an asshole!  Especially to poor Trent Reznor.  When I have tweeted at him, look what I've written:

Good job riling up the Prince fans. Now they're starting to invade our blog. The rabid Weezer fans will be next, I suppose.

I'd like to bitch about my workload. Policing my blog for anti-you trolls doesn't help. 2 hrs of overtime and counting...

(This was around the time that Trent got engaged, and because we at Places Parallel were not permitting racist nastiness to be posted on our website about Mariqueen, Iris and I started to become the scapegoat for everyone's sexual frustration and broken dreams. So I was a little frustrated.)

I think you should go back to terse updates. Like one cryptic sentence every two weeks for everyone to agonize over.

(See? Mystique.)

Yes, it must be HORRIBLE to gallivant around Europe in the summer, being a rock star. This office-dwelling bitch feels you.

Wow, I had forgotten what it was like to be a Twitter addict. It's not quite the same without 's tantrums and troll-baiting.

And I wonder why he doesn't follow me!  But he's never told me to "fuck off," either, and he even gave Iris a hug with her L'Orangerie Stank shirt on.

So I'm a trouble-maker on the Internet.  And I probably will be until I get the cease-and-desist letter.  If I ever become creatively successful, someone may just harass me in the persona of my dead chinchilla, Rollo. That's karma, but I wouldn't mind too much. She always was sassy, with a dirty mouth.

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

I Came Back. Came Back Haunted.

Huh. This all still works. Nobody here but the spammers and the ghosts of haters, inexplicably accusing us of being obese just because Trent Reznor got himself hitched. Which is fine. I'm not sure where I'm going to be taking this's like a box of stuff from college that you've kept in your basement, untouched for years, all dusty and full of cobwebs, and there may be a live beetle somewhere near the bottom, so you're a bit hesitant to dig through it.

Taking a three-year break. Now THAT'S a way to promote your blog!

Still, the break was needed. Things were getting a bit crazy around here, and what was really fun was no longer fun. Three years later, in my unassuming real life, I've been questioning a lot of things--what is my calling? Am I really meant to be a writer? Gosh, I really AM fat now, aren't I? A lot of things that I've fought hard for in this life hardly seem worthwhile. So I've got a bit of fire in my belly--unclutter, escape from an untenable situation, go for a jog now and again, sort out this writing question once and for all. I was thinking of starting a new blog. But I think this old one will do. No one but me and the spammers and the haters and hopefully you.

Oh, and this past weekend I was here. I mean, I couldn't SEE any of this...I'm far too short and was well in the back of the crowd, but it was an amazing, cathartic experience, regardless. I'm so happy that I can still look forward to hearing these songs live for a while, that Trent was lying when he "waved goodbye."

But two observations: 1) Those shorts are HIDEOUS. I mean, an actual fashion atrocity. They're like harem pants, but khaki shorts. They've got like three feet of crotch space. Like what was he thinking...ugh, no. 2) He really needs to get a handle on the "HEY"s and the "GO!"s. A direct quote from "Came Back Haunted": "Ha ha ha ha...GO!" These exclamations seem almost involuntary at this point, but with a little cognitive therapy, I think he can work through it.

This won't be solely a NIN parody-blog-thing, or whatever we were doing before. Nor will it only be a music review blog. I've hijacked this shit, and hopefully we'll be going to places parallel to the places parallel Iris and I originally imagined. Unless I say "fuck it" and let the grass and the weeds and the trees overrun this place. No harm done in that case. Who doesn't need more links to Viagra and new, exciting ways to make money at home?

Sunday, May 16, 2010

How to Destroy Angels Has Released a Video!

First of all, you can watch "The Space in Between" in 1080p here.

Okay, let's discuss!

Okay, video is starting in a poorly lit hotel...kind of sounds like a slowed-down "Burn" so far, but I can go with it.

Someone has left the TV on, the water running, a cigarette burning...there's life with Mr. Maise right there.

HOLY SHIT...what has happened to our happy couple?!!!!

(click for larger size)

More monotone "singing." So I've figured out why I'm not really into HDA. It is the singing...NOT the fact that it's her and not really her voice, although no one is going to mistake her for Jennifer Hudson or anything. It's the fact that she's essentially singing Nine Inch Nails songs in a dull monotone. It might work if she were in Ladytron or something, but Trent's music is very strum und drang, emotional, cathartic. In one song, he can range from a whisper to a sexy growl to a rage-filled roar. I mean, let's face it...lyrics are not Trent's strong suit. Half the time, he's recycling lyrics from other songs. It's the WAY he sings it that draws me in. So that's why the monotone is not doing it for me at. all. Don't get me wrong--it's not a *bad* song. It's just kind of boring.


Meanwhile, Trent's not up to much in this video. "Don't pay me any mind...I'm just a corpse here...had nothing to do with the making of this song..."

And Mariqueen tries her best to be the SEXXXIEST possible dead person. Yuck.

Atticus does a good job at being sort of vaguely sinister:

But who the hell is this chatty blonde? Seriously? Who is this??

Well, it probably doesn't matter, since it's meant to be all David Lynch and mysterious, I guess. It's kind of a cool video, but it also sort of feels like something Marilyn Manson would do now that he's back together with Evan Rachel Wood. "We love each other so much we are BLOODY CORPSES!" Maybe this is all some allegory about Trent and MQ's feelings when they got into all those fights on Twitter.

About two minutes in, this production turns into an overserious remake of Lady Gaga's "Bad Romance"

But I have to admit that the effects are pretty cool.

But they should have done some movie magic on the gross feet in this video:

This band hasn't released their first EP, and there are clearly already some serious tensions within the group:

I would like to point out that when CSI Miami arrives, they're going to get the phone logs for this room, and Chatty Cathy's fingerprints are clearly on it. Horatio Caine would know just what to say.

So there you have it. Kinda cool video. Boring song. Thoughts?