As usual, I started with my weekly dose of MacBreak Weekly for sorting and the initial wash. As always, this is just great radio– there is just nothing like people of passion (whatever the passion may be). Then a little sampling of the samples from the year-end best-of lists from All Songs Considered before I turned it off for fear of buying more music I don’t have time to listen to (though this thing by David Byrne and Brian Eno may be worth a listen).
Speaking of buying music, I played Nine Inch Nails ‘The Slip’ while I wondered why I pulled up short from getting Radiohead’s ‘In Rainbows’ when it was a free download, while I later grabbed NIN at the first opportunity. Maybe because I felt more of an obligation to contribute some cash to Radiohead, or maybe because NIN seems so profoundly anti-establishment that it seemed only right to take their stuff for nothing (for the record, I greedily grab up ultra-anti-establishment Psalter’s music without a second thought, though I have compelled Captain Napkins to take a twenty on occasion).
‘The Slip’ is a great album, and a nice blend of techno stuff and more conventional songs and some lovely instrumentals. The Wife has clued me in recently to the importance of dynamics in music, so I’m noticing that, and TS is at turns tender and assaultive. In particular, ‘Lights in the Sky’ is a heartbreaking song of devotion, and ‘Discipline’ (a lament/petition that should be played at least once in every house of worship) really moves in a very deep groove. And Reznor leaves us with another gem in the album’s coda, the seething, then searing–and completely hypnotic– ‘Demon Seed’.
After NIN I stayed in the techno genre by dialing up some Dubh on the iPod. It seemed to me that listening to some music from Belfast’s Ikon community would be a good way to welcome their favorite son, Pete Rollins, later this week. It is more spoken word, and much more low-key, and therefore much less useful for late-night laundry productivity, but there you go. At least I got my brogue on (for a minute, it sounded like the 14th century mystic Meister Eckhart was guilty of a major anachronism when he talked about loving God like a ‘car’, but I’m pretty sure the reader was saying ‘cow’).