Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Current listening material:

Conor Oberst - Conor Oberst
I am sort of a novice to the Bright Eyes experience, but the stuff I've heard off It's Morning I'm Wide Awake and Noise Floor Rarities is pretty cool. Conor Oberst, the singer-songwriter behind Bright Eyes, recently released this solo LP, and I am liking it quite a bit. It's goooood. I think this album is one of my favorite listens presently. The Tom Petty nod in Moab is a nice touch.

The Tallest Man In The World - Shallow Graves
Most reviews of this record mention TTMITW channeling Bob Dylan in his vocals and guitars, and I guess I can see the similarities in the folk music. Regardless, he comes off as original and refreshing, and Shallow Graves is a damn good folk record for quiet times.

The Velvet Underground - Peel Slowly and See
Andy Warhol album cover? Check. Lou Reed and John Cale goodness? Check! 70+ songs off their principal albums and demos? Check!

Also you guys should check out Lykke Li's Youth Novels, it is a really great album, I love I'm Good, I'm Gone, it is one of my favorite tracks off it.

I finished reading the fifth and final issue of The Dark Tower: The Long Road Home, by writers Robin Furth and Peter David, and illustrators Jae Lee and Richard Isanove. As a companion to the Dark Tower reading experience, and as a comic on its own, it is really well-written and drawn. Firstly, let's talk visuals; the coloring and inking in this story is very beautiful. In its own dark and stark way, it is an extremely pretty series. The solid red theme inside the pink crystal ball realm and the matted brown and black shades in the wasted wilderness set an environment rife with menace and foreboding, and properly set the mood of the story, in which our three main gunslingers-in-training make their way back home to Gilead after a mission went violently awry set in the first Dark Tower comic series, The Gunslinger.

As for the dialog and story, it genuinely feels like a Stephen King experience, as if the reader is really there, on that barren highway in Wizard and Glass, as Roland recalls his youth to his ka-tet. Which makes sense, since the creative team worked closely with the King himself. An added bonus found in both The Gunslinger an d The Long Road Home is the inclusion of back stories of plot devices and entities presented in both the comics and in the seven-book series. It's a very nice touch, with plenty of beautiful illustrations and prose. It makes it feel as if the books themselves are inseparable from these comics and vice versa. In other words, the series does not at all feel like a sell-out franchise tool, as is wont with comic derivatives of movies or other books.

So in other words, I cannot wait for the battle on Jericho Hill in the third Dark Tower comic series! It is going to be great, I tells ya.

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