Shoegazer Sunday: Explosions in the Sky’s “The Birth and Death of the Day” Live

September 28th, 2014

How do you feel about six minutes of intermittently pleasant guitar noodling?

Tough.

They’re an awful lot like a strictly instrumental version of Midsummer.

Two TV Artifacts From My Misspent Youth

September 25th, 2014

There are two forthcoming TV show DVD sets that hearken back to the days of my youth:

Recommended without qualification is the complete WKRP in Cincinnati with the original music restored. If it wasn’t the greatest sitcom of the late 1970s/early 1980s, it was certainly in the top 5.

A bit more qualified recommendation for the complete 1960s Batman. Every significant dark, gritty Batman of the last 30 years (from Frank Miller’s The Dark Knight to the Christopher Nolan trilogy, and even the Tim Burton movie) has been largely in reaction to this show’s campy tone. The show is very much a product of its time, but retains a certain charm for just that reason. Plus the cast of villains (Burgess Meredith, Vincent Price, Julie Numar, Frank Gorshin, etc.) draws from some of the very best character actors of the time.

I’m sure either might make swell Christmas presents for someone you know…

8-Bit Version of Nine Inch Nail’s “Closer”

September 24th, 2014

Either you like this sort of thing or you don’t….

I think it gets better the deeper into the song you get.

Restaurant Review: September 20, 2014: Pour House Pints and Pies

September 23rd, 2014

Pour House Pints And Pies
11835 Jollyville Rd (Austin, 78759)
(512) 270-4740

This is essentially a sports bar that serves pizza. The pizza was pretty good (but could have used more cheese to hold our “four meats plus onions” toppings in place), but the fried mozzarella was undersized for the price, and the service was indifferent at best.

Unless you want to watch sports, there’s no reason to go here instead of Reale’s just up 183.

Shoegazer Sunday: My Violent Ego’s “Trail of Lights”

September 21st, 2014

“Trail of Lights” is a lush, laid-back, multilayered Shoegaze piece from Scottish/Italian duo My Violent Ego.

The Lame Excuse Books Page Has Been Updated

September 19th, 2014

I’ve updated the Lame Excuse Books web page with a number of new books from the August catalog. Includes a number of tasty books (many signed) for your reading and collecting pleasure…

Library Additions: Several Random Interesting Books

September 17th, 2014

There is no theme, only Zuul interesting stuff that’s come in after I got back from Worldcon.

  • Asprin, Robert and Jody Lynn Nye. Myth-Told Tales. Meisha Merlin, 2003. First edition trade paperback original, a Fine copy, signed to a Jennifer by both authors on August 31, 2003 (when I believe they attended Dragoncon). I haven’t read Asprin’s work in quite a while, but this was only $3 at Half Price Books.

    Myth Told Tales

  • Haldeman, Joe, editor. Study War No More. First edition hardback, a Near Fine copy with crease to FFE and a BB-sized outward bump (probably a binding flaw) near top of spine, in a Near Fine+ slightly spine-faded dust jacket. Signed by Haldeman and contributors Harlan Ellison, Poul Anderson and George Alec Effinger. Anthology. Bought off eBay for $24.99.

    Study War

  • Pohl, Frederik, and Jack Williamson. Land’s End. Tor, 1988. First edition hardback, a Very Good+ copy with slight crease to spine, slight bend at head and heel, and a trace of lean, in a Near Fine- dust jacket with 1″ x 1/8″ crease at top dj rear and wear at extremity points. Inscribed by both authors: [In Williamson's hand] “For/Debbie/with the very best/Jack Williamson/[in Pohl's hand] and/Fred Pohl.” Bought for $20 off eBay.

    Land's End Sig

  • Smith, Clark Ashton. The Immortals of Mercury. Stellar Publishing Corporation, 1932. First edition chapbook original, Very Good only, more browned than usual. Probably the most expensive of all the Stellar series, as it frequently lists for over $100. Bought for $29.99 off eBay. For more on the Stellar series, see here.

    CAS Immortals Mercury

  • Tuttle, Lisa. A Spaceship Built of Stone and Other Stories. The Women’s Press, 1987. First edition trade paperback original, a Fine copy, new and unread. Inscribed to me by the author: “For Lawrence/A spaceship built of stone/should not fall apart. I/hope this one lasts/All the best/Lisa Tuttle/20 Aug 2014″. (An additional personal postcard to me is laid in as well.) Sent to me by the author. The story is that I found a less perfect copy of this book at an Oxfam shop for £1.50, and bought it with the intention of having Lisa sign it at Worldcon. However, when I did so, the first leaf of the book fell out! At which point Lisa said she’d mail me a copy…
  • Shoegazer Sunday: Black Hearted Brother’s “(I Don’t Mean to) Wonder”

    September 14th, 2014

    Black Hearted Brother is a project featuring Slowdive’s Neal Halstead. Here they are with “(I Don’t Mean to) Wonder”.

    Also, evidently the Judge Dredd remake has some impressive slow-motion set-pieces…

    Web Pages That Suck: The Afterlife

    September 12th, 2014

    So Dwight sent me an ultra-crappy webpage (warning: auto-sound), wondering if it was worse than Bella De Soto’s page. It wasn’t. But it did make me wonder what bold new frontiers in bad web design had been unearth. It’s not as horrible as Bella De Soto’s page either, but it really tries…

    Behold The Afterlife! (Allow it to run the Quicktime once for the full effect.)

    Well, that is to say what the afterlife would look like if designed by a dozen Geocities webdesigners after a marathon session of huffing paint fumes in a church basement, followed by an explosion at the local animated .gif factory…

    Library Additions: Three Interesting Chapbooks

    September 11th, 2014

    I recently got in three interesting trim-sized chapbooks, two hardback and two signed:

  • Gaiman, Neil. The Sleeper and the Spindle. Morrow/Harper Collins, 2014. First separate edition hardback (it appeared in an anthology in 2013), a Fine copy in decorated boards, sans dust jacket, as issued. Chapbook on the Sleeping beauty theme, only available through California bookstores on California Book Day (May 3, 2014).

    Gaiman Sleeper Spindle

  • Powers, Tim. Appointment on Sunset. Charnel House, 2014. First edition hardback, #115 of 250 signed, numbered copies, a Fine copy, sans dust jacket, as issued, with signed and numbered toe-tag affixed to the front cover.

    Powers Sunset

  • Swanwick, Michael. Solstice Fire. Dragonstairs Press, 2013. First edition side-sewn chapbook original, #42 of 100 signed numbered copies, a Fine copy.

    Solstice Fire

  • One other thing these have in common: I’ll have copies for all three available through Lame Excuse Books (inquire if you want one).