Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Good and Cheap (Books)! Day 9

I am actually between books right now so I was browsing some advance readers when I spied my 33 1/3 series on the shelf. I picked one up and fell in love with this fantastic series all over again.

You can stop reading here if you aren’t curious about music. You can also seek counseling because brother, something is wrong with you.

Each book is dedicated to a single album, or a time and place. It’s the best idea for a series ever. I’m not including Game of Thrones in that statement, so calm down. I’ll highlight a few of my favorite titles and give you the lowdown on three brand new releases.

Prince’s Sign O’ the Times by Michaelangelo Matos. Liz attempted to make fun of my love for Prince a couple of weeks ago. Rest assured my fellow Princetonians, she will be punished. And yes, you can use "Princetonians." Matos writes about Prince’s masterpiece (yeah, it is, so shut up) as it related to his life, how it changed his way of looking at the world. Me too, Michaelangelo…me too.

Kick out the Jams by Don McLeese makes my list because while I had heard of MC5, I actually knew very little about them and was only familiar with Rage Against the Machine’s version of the song “Kick Out the Jams.” This little book blew me away and completely inspired me. I can’t listen to Rage or the White Stripes without hearing the influence. McLeese by the way gets extra points because it’s from a boots on the ground aspect.

Talking Heads’ Fear of Music by Jonathan Lethem.  I like to think that Lethem and I were both sitting on our beds listening obsessively to the Talking Heads at the same time.  Lethem makes no bones about it, he was absolutely, totally obsessed with this record.  You get the sense he wrote this book with the same intensity that the record originally filled him with.

Magnetic Fields’ 69 Love Songs by LD Beghton is a total insider's look at this triple album. It's exactly the book you want to read if you want to read about 69 Love Songs, that is to say it's funny, smart, and includes a crossword puzzle.

PJ Harvey’s Rid of Me: A Story by Kate Schatz is one of (I think) two or three titles in this series that are fiction (Joe Pernice wrote a fiction piece inspired by Meat is Murder). Schatz’s story is everything Harvey’s record is--dark, smart, and full of rage. She uses each song on Rid of Me as a chapter title and then infuses the lyrics into the story.

I could go on and on, write about Achtung Baby, Shoot Out the Lights, If You’re Feeling Sinister, Kid A, Born in the U.S.A, Pretty Hate Machine, or Dummy…but you get the point.  Three more in the series hit the street last week; They Might Be Giants’ Flood, Andrew WK’s I Get Wet, and Serge Gainsbourg’s Histoire de Melodie Nelson.

I’ve read about a dozen in the series, which means I only have about 75 more to go!

[Liz here. I don't have a clue what the hell G's talking about here. And Prince is dumb.]

No comments:

Post a Comment