The Music Man by Lynn Hirschberg
I’m not really sure why, but I find myself often thinking about the Rick Rubin article I’m about to talk about, even though it was published last September. For some reason when I read it, I felt like I really understood what Rick Rubin was all about, and that a part of me was somewhat like him.
For those who don’t know, Rick Rubin is known mainly for being a music producer. He’s been in the music game for about 30 years now, and has helped people like The Beastie Boys, The Dixie Chicks, System of a Down, Neil Diamond, and most notably, Johnny Cash, create amazing records. But it’s the way he guides people that really intrigues me. He’s often called a guru, as he tells you exactly how to make a song sound better by just knowing what it needs. There’s no science to it, he just has a gut feeling when he hears things and he goes with it.
One of my favorite parts of the article talks about Rubin and his interests:
Rubin loves research. He’s always on a quest to find just the right thing, whether it be a book or a building. Recently, he hunted down the brand of water that claims to have the greatest level of purity (Ice Age); he pored over architectural manuals to determine what kind of hinge would have been used in 1923 (for his house); and when Johnny Cash was ailing, Rubin discovered a kinesiologist whom Cash credited with extending his life. And so on. Rubin has always been passionate, even compulsive, about his interests.
Something about that really strikes a cord with me. I feel like what really sets him a part from other producers or people in general is that he’s so passionate about things. I definitely suggest reading this article, it’s kind of a pain to read online, but I think it’s totally worth it.
A couple weeks ago my best friend Garrett suggested I check out this comic book called The Walking Dead, which he described as a really good zombie story. I’m a big fan of zombies, so I bought the first trade paperback and gave it a try. I ended up getting completely addicted to this comic, and have since bought trades 1 through 7 in an effort to try and catch up.
The story is a pretty simple one, a good cop gets shot and put into a coma, wakes up to find the world’s gone to hell. There are zombies everywhere, and no one has any idea why. There’s no government, no law, just a lot of random people trying their best to survive. But what really sets this story apart is the incredible writing from Robert Kirkman. I think he described it best in the introduction to the first trade paperback when he said, “With The Walking Dead I want to explore how people deal with extreme situations and how these events CHANGE them.”
This isn’t just some zombie story, this is about people trying to keep their humanity in a world that’s been turned upside down. What also makes the story so amazing that it doesn’t hold anything back. People cuss, people get eaten, people die. Nothing is taboo or off limits, this is how fucked up the world would be and how people would react. It’s also pretty gruesome, so if you have a problem with gore, this probably isn’t the book for you, but it’s certainly not what this book is all about either.
I can’t say enough great things about this book, so go to your local comic book shop or even a bookstore and take a peek for yourself!
Radiohead are once again upping the stakes and pioneering new trails with their newest endeavor, an open contest to create a remix of their new single, Nude. Okay, this isn’t the first time that anyone has had a remix competition, but its certainly the first time a band has huge as Radiohead has opened their arms to anyone and everyone who wants to be a star.
The only catch is that you have to buy the song clips, like the vocals, drums, guitars, from the iTunes store, they’re not just giving them away for free. But it’s still pretty rad to see the band being so open like this. So far the guys from Holy Fuck have a sizable lead, and with good reason, they’re remix is pretty amazing. I’m only on the second song so far, and as of writing this there have been 48 remixes submitted, so it should be pretty fun to listen what everyone has to offer!
Check out the site, DL the tracks and get famous!
I have such an art boner for Paul Pope, so whenever he comes out with something new I instantly want to post, much like how I am with Geoff Mcfetridge’s work. So while I was on vacation I saw on Paul’s blog that he’s going to be releasing a line of clothes with DKNY Jeans, and well, they look kind of cool. I’m not really sure how many pieces there’s going to be total, but it looks like several shirts, some hoodies, a blazer, a snow jacket and even snow pants.
The four pieces you see above are the ones that I think I would wear, but I’m not really 100% on them sadly. I’ve never been a fan of DKNY or DKNY Jeans, and I’m not really a fan of all-over prints or shoulder prints. I like my t-shirts to be straight forward and let the art do the talking. I think my favorite is the black hoodie with the white print, I think that could be rad. The collection should be coming out soon, so if you’re into fashion or Paul Pope keep your eyes out.
Growing up I always thought skunks smelled like really potent pink erasers… actually I still think that way. I’m pretty sure the Pink Pearl eraser is ingrained into most people’s heads, though I always just think of them as pink erasers. Jordan Crane has taken this landmark of an object and immortalized it in print form, selling some gigantor 26″ x 40″ prints on his site. The real bargain here is that it’s only $125, which for a print that size is sort of steal.
I really just like the simplicity of this more than anything, it could go well in any more room and in any decor. I flipped the image so you can read it clearly, but I don’t think it’s supposed to be that way, as you can see Jordan’s signature on the left side.
A lot of the time, visiting the sites that link to +KN leads to me finding a lot of great new things, and every now and then a great site really gets me excited. This holds true for Monster-Munch, the creation of Nicky Gibson, a graphic designer who lives in East London. Looking through Nicky’s blog I’m absolutely amazed that she’s only been blogging for 3 months now. It could be the fact that she creates websites for a living that everything looks so good, it makes me extremely jealous.
The purpose of the blog is to show her passions and the things that make her smile, but the themes of monsters and things being handmade definitely run through the blog as well. She also seems like one of the friendliest, most down-to-earth people out there, so please pay her site a visit and leave her some nice notes!
It’s pretty unbelievable, but today is Kitsune Noir’s 1st birthday! I remember last April being excited about the 30 hits this blog would get, mostly from Jeff and I checking it to see if somehow someone came across it. Now that number is 200 times larger, and I’m having so much fun with the blog it’s kind of silly. In honor of +KN’s birthday, I got together with my friends Frank, Jonny, and Mark for an impromptu cupcake baking session! We ended up making some absolutely delicious chocolate cupcakes with purple frosting. They were mostly made by Frank, who in my eyes is like the greatest cook ever, though Mark brought the vegetable oil and Jonny and I worked diligently to make the frosting just the right shade of purple. If there was a soundtrack to last night, it would have been With A Little Help From My Friends by The Beatles.
I was also thinking about it, and I figure what’s a birthday without presents? So I figured that instead of you guys sending me presents, that I would give you all a present for being such awesome readers. I also know how much you all loved Mcbess’ wallpaper, so I’m giving away yet ANOTHER Mcbess wallpaper!
This was actually the first wallpaper Matt did for me, but it accidentally got released early, so I freaked out and asked him if he could make me a new one. Thankfully he was totally awesome about the situation and agreed to do it. But ever since then it really bothered me that this design never got used, seeing as how amazing it is. So here it is, an impromptu Desktop Wallpaper Project entry, but nonetheless still awesome.
So here’s to another year of blogging, hopefully 10 or 20. I really love doing this, I love meeting new people, finding fun new things, and I can’t imagine doing anything else for a really long time. Hopefully over the next year I’ll be coming out with even more cool projects and the good times will continue on.
Out There On The Ice by Cut Copy
When the Melbourne based trio Cut Copy released their first album Bright Like Neon Love in 2004 they sounded to me like a less robotic Daft Punk. I still enjoyed the album a lot though, and was excited for their next album. Well that time has finally come, and the four year wait was definitely worth it. Their new album In Ghost Colours takes the bones of their last album and makes something entirely new and fresh out of it. Whereas the last album sometimes had some slow moments, this album is consistently good all the way through, treading somewhere electronic,disco,80’s and synth pop.
Dan Whitford’s vocals have never sounded better, and the intense amount of harmonizing really makes them stand out any more. I also really like the fact that they have a drummer, which makes them almost a rock band? The single So Haunted definitely makes a good impression, but I’ve put the song Out There On The Ice above to give everyone a good idea of what they have to look forward to. I’ve had this album for almost two weeks now and I’m still not sick of it.
The album came out last week in Australia, comes out next week here in the States, and the following week in the UK, so keep your eyes peeled, this is definitely one of my favorite albums of the year!