Saturday, December 27


So I’m out of my funk. It got worse before it got better but as of today I’m feeling good. I’m feeling fine. I have no idea why I was feeling so down about everything all at once. But whatever, right?

I finished Downtown Owl last night. It was one of my Christmas books. I read about five pages on Thursday but devoured the rest of it yesterday. Klosterman can write. Like… for real. I can see how he wouldn’t appeal to everyone (he tells very small stories that usually leave me feeling solipsistic and melancholic) but I love everything I’ve read by him. Downtown Owl is no exception. It’s about a small town in North Dakota in the winter of 1983-4. There’s a massive blizzard and lots of quiet sad little moments. Maybe I just like his style, or tone or whatever you’re supposed to call it too much but the book had a lot to do with the bottoming out of my funk and its end. Anyway, you should probably check it out.

In music news I have been listening to the new Kings of Leon album, “Only By Night.” I had bought their previous effort (“Because of the Times”) and would give it mixed reviews. A lot of the songs were solid but not great after a couple of weeks, but the great tracks (i.e. “Knocked Up,” “On Call,” “True Love Way”) stayed great. That usually doesn’t happen. If the album grows stale then by and large it’s the whole album. Only By Night has a higher ratio of great songs to average songs and seems to be headed towards the same conclusion as its older brother. “Sex On Fire,” “Manhattan,” “Use Somebody,” “Closer,” and “Be Somebody” are some of the best guitar driven songs I’ve heard in a long while. They somehow become more than what they are on the surface—southern rock tinged anthems sung by a bluesy voice that sings about love and loss. If you’ve never heard of the band you have heard songs just like it. And yet the sadness seems more genuine, older, more studied. The love is more desperate as his voice cracks and recedes in the mix. I’m still unsure how to pronounce Leon though. Elizabeth seems to think it should be like the American name but I always thought it was like the region of Spain. My evidence? The Spanish region known as Leon had kings… not that band names are logical like that. Just look at… well at lot of bands that became popular in 2008. I’d say MGMT might be the most inscrutable but Burning Sensations always makes me smile. STDs…

Next post watch out for my Meursault review, possibly my thoughts on some of the Christmas movie releases and a book or two. On the list for movies: Valkyrie, Slumdog Millionaire, The Spirit. Still to read: The Adventures of Cavalier and Clay by Michael Chabon and High Fidelity by Nick Hornby.

Post title is a song by Marnie Stern. I’m listening to Salt, Pt. 2 by Meursault.

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