Tonight I’ll be seeing The Books in concert at the Masonic Lodge in the Hollywood Forever Cemetary and I couldn’t be more excited. I think the last time they played in LA, or at least to my knowledge, was something like three years ago at The Getty Center or Villa and it sold out in no time and I wasn’t able to see them. There’s just something about The Books that really make me happy, they don’t really make music like anyone else.
Above is the video for An Owl With Knees which is probably one of my favorite songs. It’s not an amazing video by any means, but it’s certainly wonderful to sit back and watch. You can find this song on their album Lost and Safe.
A couple months ago I got an email from Justin Gage, creator of the Los Angeles music blog Aquarium Drunkard asking me if I’d be interested in helping his site out with a redesign. I had been a fan of his blog for years now, so I was totally excited that he asked me to help him.
Checking out his old blog, which I failed to take a screen cap of to show the before and after, it was kind of a mess. First off it was extremely dark, using prmarily blacks, browns and golds. Second all of the content was contained in one tiny main column and it was all pushed to the left side, only 20px left of the edge of the browser. To say it felt cramped would be an understatement. My idea for the site was to lighten everything up, increasing font sizes, giving the site brighter colors and making it feel more welcome in every way possible.
My inspiration for the site was old bars, as Justin and I are both expert beer drinkers. The difficult part was not making it too campy or too tongue in cheek, with bottles of booze or drink rings. I went through several versions, you can see earlier versions under the cut, but it wasn’t until I created the background pattern that I found my direction. I decided to go with a blue and creme color palette with accents of black. I also wanted to make things a little gritty cuz that’s how a bar should feel and I like how it looks.
Overall I’m really happy with how it turned out. As with all my projects I really try to focus on simplicity, usability and legibility. Making it snazzy looking is just a perk of the job. Big thanks to my buddy Justin for reaching out to me on this project, I had a blast doing it.
Check under the cut for more early versions of the site.
Good Monday, hopefully your day has been good so far. This week’s #musicmonday definitely feels better than last week’s, though I’m not sure why. Numero Uno is Beach House since I haven’t stopped listening to their upcoming Teen Dream. It’s my late-twenties dream. I’ve really been enjoying the Bowerbids album Upper Air, though I’m annoyed that their name isn’t BowerbiRds. Doesn’t that sound better? (EDIT – They are called Bowerbirds. Phew.) Animal Collective snuck back in there because of their new Fall Be Kind EP, which lead me into listening to Feels a lot as well.
I came across this band called Venice is Sinking and their album Azar and have really been digging it. Kind of remind me of Dirty on Purpose mixed with Explosions in the Sky. I’ve also been listening to Princeton when I walk around town, it’s cheery and upbeat with hints of Magentic Fields and more than a nod to Jens Lekman. Girls and Real Estate round out the list, and you can catch the latter on the Mixcast No.015.
After five years Acne art director Daniel Carlstein has decided to head off into the wilderness of freelance design, so in preparation he’s put together a portfolio of his work and there’s some nice looking stuff. He did a series of posters for Restaurang de Ville which make me laugh (and hungry) but my favorite piece was this invitation for Acne Paper’s 5th issue, the elegant issue, that’s been shaped like a gentleman’s get-up. Fold it open and voila, all is revealed. Cute and charming.
I can’t remember how I came across I Love Hot Dogs, but I’m really in love with this little blog. Runby Shannon Maldonado, she posts still from films old and new, showing the beauty (and randomness) of movies. She also puts up old movie posters as well, a lot of them being older and quite campy. One entry that really caught my eye was the entry for the 1967 film called A Colt Is My Passport, about a hitman who’s sent to eliminate a rival gang boss. Of course after Googling it I see that it’s in a Criterion collection which absolutely makes sense, it’s an amazing looking Japanese film noir. I’m definitely going to put this on my X-Mas list.