Prince RIP

April 21st, 2016

Musician Prince, AKA Prince Rogers Nelson, AKA The Artist Formerly Known as Prince, AKA is dead at age 57.

Imagine there’s an embedded video of “Paisley Park” here, since Prince was evidently extra diligent in keeping his music off the Internet…

Library Addition: Michael Swanwick’s Fallen Leaves

April 19th, 2016

It’s another Michael Swanwick Dragonstair Press book with a ridiculously short print run:

Swanwick, Michael, with Marianne Porter. Fallen Leaves. Dragonstairs Press, 2016. First edition hardback, number 17 of 20 signed, numbered copies (the only edition), a Fine copy, sans dust jacket, as issued, with spine label affixed.

Swanwick Leaves

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Says the Publisher:

The Fallen Leaves Project was carried out during October, 2015, in multiple locations around Philadelphia, including Laurel Hill Cemetery, West Laurel Hill Cemetery, Morris Arboretum, and Gorgas Park.

Michael Swanwick composed “epitaphs”, and wrote them on fallen leaves. The leaves were photographed by Marianne Porter and Michael Swanwick within a few feet of where they were found and left where they were, to be discovered by passersby. Or not. The photographs were posted daily throughout October on Twitter, Facebook, and Swanwick’s blog. In total, ninety-four images were created.

Fallen Leaves is a set of albums made of hand-crafted mulberry paper, manufactured by Karin tribe members, with a selection of leaf photographs pasted in. Archival glue was used throughout. Each album contains fifteen images and no two albums contain the same set of images. Fallen Leaves is limited to an edition of twenty albums.

The book sold out pretty much the same day it was announced…

Library Addition: Signed First of Ray Bradbury’s Yestermorrow

April 18th, 2016

Another signed Ray Bradbury first, this one a collection of essays:

Bradbury, Ray. Yestermorrow. Joshua Odell Editions/Capra Press, 1991. First edition hardback (“First Edition” stated and numberline ending in 1), a Fine copy in a Fine- dust jacket with a tiny bit of dust jacket crimping at head and heel. Inscribed by Bradbury: “Matthew!/Ray Bradbury/ 4/30/94”. Bought off eBay for $20, which is 5¢ over list price.

Yestermorrow

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Shoegazer Sunday: Dominique Fricot’s “I Miss the 80s”

April 17th, 2016

This is probably more pop than Shoegaze, but Dominique Fricot’s “I Miss the 80s” is a fun little song that has a dream pop vibe to it.

Having lived through the 1980s, my only caveat is that these are not the cultural referents I would have personally deployed. Even given that, the song still evokes a bit of wry nostalgia. But part of the point of the song is that it’s not first-hand nostalgia, it’s second-hand nostalgia refracted through the prism of the popular music and movies of the era by someone who was “too young to really know.”

It’s also probably the finest song to ever talk about Jennifer Grey’s nose…

Shoegazer Sunday: Stella Diana’s “Sulphur”

April 10th, 2016

Stella Diana hails from Naples, Italy. Here’s “Sulpher.”

Library Addition: Signed Ray Bradbury Christmas 2008 Broadsheet

April 5th, 2016

Bought another signed Ray Bradbury Christmas broadsheet:

Bradbury, Ray. Christmas Greetings 2008 (Imagine that you have been dead). Privately printed, 2008. First edition Christmas broadsheet, a Fine- copy with slight corner bumping. Signed by Bradbury. Bought for $25 off eBay.

Bradbury Christmas 2008 1

Colin Furze Built a Thermite Launcher

April 4th, 2016

Well of course he did.

Here he is showing off the thermite launcher:

Here he is making the thermite:

And here he is building the the launcher:

Just think, if YouTube didn’t exist, Colin Furze would probably be off somewhere designing industrial flanges rather than enthusiastically garage-engineering amazingly cool and exceptionally dangerous devices for our amusement and edification.

I’m not going to post a “Do not attempt this at home” warning, because every Colin Furze video comes with an implicit “do not attempt this at home.” It’s also possible that Furze’s thermite thrower may qualify as a destructive device under BATF laws, depending on whether it would fall under the pyrotechnic exemption.

But if you do build a thermite launcher, at least wear eye and hand protection…

Berkeley Breathed Wins April Fools

April 1st, 2016

With Calvin and Hobbes 2016:

Luna Covers “Smells Like Teen Spirit” on a Gayageum

March 24th, 2016

Looks like it’s shaping up to be World Music Week here at Futuramen, so here’s Luna Lee covering “Smells Like Teen Spirit” on the traditional Korean Gayageum:

“Crazy Horse”: A Song That Kicks Ass

March 22nd, 2016

If you’re a fan of the film Genghis Blues (which you should be; it’s a swell film), then you might very well like this performance of “Crazy Horse” by Mathias Duplessy and the Violins of the World.

That weird instrument on the left is evidently the Nyckelharpa, or key fiddle.

Unfortunately, the album this is from doesn’t appear to be available in the U.S. yet…