Tuesday, April 17, 2012

What Astonishes Is the Singing

Marvelous, special evening in Annapolis with Earthgirl and Hamster. More details may or not be forthcoming: the conversations before and after the Lambchop show, the incredible performance of a band in full command of overwhelmingly powerful understatement. I may or not try to distill, I may or not share if I do distill. There is this: Kurt Wagner, in his baseball hat and horn-rims, smoking a cigarette in front of Rams Head after the show thanking us for coming, looks like my Uncle Steve from the nose up, like my Aunt Pat from nose to chin, especially the smile, Earthgirl saw it too. Past experience has taught me not to try distilling the uncanny less I lose it.

  • Meh plus. Better than what they had been wearing.
  • While I do make sillyass Star Trek allusions (but only to the original and Next Gen), I won't be attending this.
  • Not out of principle but out of lack of damn I stopped caring about literary prizes beyond the Nobel long ago, so if I can't get outraged that Pulitzer declined to name a fiction winner, I can also note that while I had not read any of the nominees, it did sound like a shitty pool, and I am interested in that what the fuck.
  • Foreclosure/dispossession.
  • Facelessbook.
  • Meg Baird opened. Sweet.
  • They played all of Mr M for the 3/5ths of the show, then earlier stuff, interspersed with yapping with the audience. Wonderful.
  • Much smaller band last night than in the below - no brass, not an electric guitarist, just five, an excellent drummer and bass-player (Wagner gives melodic leads to the bass), a keyboardist, a synthesizer, and Wagner's brilliantly understated guitar. Holyfuck. 
  • UPDATE! Sorry, I've removed the live clip of Lambchop's entire live set at Merge XX - it was spinning fucking blooger into clusterfuck. You can youtube it if you want to find it. Here, have a photo of my mussel shells from dinner pre-concert. The food was delicious. Italian restaurants are a RIP-OFF.


Jack Gilbert

Our heart wanders lost in the dark woods.
Our dream wrestles in the castle of doubt.
But there's music in us. Hope is pushed down
but the angel flies up again taking us with her.
The summer mornings begin inch by inch
while we sleep, and walk with us later
as long-legged beauty through
the dirty streets. It is no surprise
that danger and suffering surround us.
What astonishes is the singing.
We know the horses are there in the dark
meadow because we can smell them,
can hear them breathing.
Our spirit persists like a man struggling
through the frozen valley
who suddenly smells flowers
and realizes the snow is melting
out of sight on top of the mountain,
knows that spring has begun.


  1. I do wish Froomkin had landed elsewhere after his expulsion from YFWP.


    P.S. Content aside, the old p.c. with the pre-Windows XP operating system would come crashing to a halt when confronted with the amount of ads, scripts, and other b.s. at that place.

  2. Mussels ain't rock and/or roll. Where's the grease n' beer?

  3. > "I don't read Huffington Post for many reasons of my own, ..."

    As someone who cares deeply about how Nike or Apple or American Apparel or etc etc might be exploiting cheap labor with sweat shops on other shores, I look to the HuffPo to keep me apprised of such things. Because we all need to be informed about such things. And what's more, that information should be written by people who got paid absolutely fuck-all for their own labor.