The Music Journal: Entry #9


Geffen Records

Geffen Records

Today I woke up hungover and noticed my headphones were hooked up to my record player. Katie and I did some drinking downtown last night, and like good kids, we opted to leave the car and hitch a ride from a friend. So, I was without I-pod last night. You know what, though? Records fucking rule! I really need to listen to them more. The I-pod mainly just represents convenience anymore, but a lot of the mystique of the whole record listening process is taken out of the I-pod experience. The record on the turntable? Peter Gabriel 3. I swear to god, I’m not British!

I actually have quite a bit of admiration for Peter Gabriel’s music. He is an amazing vocalist, I think—his voice is really unique. He doesn’t always write good songs; in fact, the bad almost outweighs the good. But every studio album he has released (not counting all those bloody soundtracks) has some good moments. His third solo album, also known as Melt because of the album cover image of his face melting, is probably his best record. It doesn’t have a lot of hits, but it’s definitely the most consistent album of his. “No Self Control” is one that I dig a lot. It’s got his buddy Phil Collins from Genesis playing some amazing drums on it, and there are all these crazy xylophones and weird samples. It definitely is progressive rock—a sensible evolution from his work with Genesis—but it’s pretty genre defying at times. It came out at this weird time when music was becoming more oriented with technology, and thus, the beat was becoming more of a principle factor. Songs like “Intruder” present the beginnings of the drum sound that Collins would later perfect on his smash “In the Air Tonight”, from his first solo album, Face Value. The hit singles “Games Without Frontiers” and “Biko” have become two of Gabriel’s most well-known songs, and “No Self Control” was a minor success.

Apple/Capitol/EMI Records

Apple/Capitol/EMI Records

On a more emotional note, I watched a Showtime doc on the creation of the Cirque du Soleil production of Love by The Beatles, and man…the thing almost moved me to tears. I haven’t been fortunate enough yet to see the actual live production of the show (Katie, JoJo, Irene, Colby, and almost everyone else I know has seen it…ugh, I’m jealous), but I am guessing that when I do, especially after seeing this film, I am going to bawl my fucking head off. It is definitely true that The Beatles are my favorite band, and I realize this more and more all the time. Any time there is anything Beatles-related—anything on TV, in magazines, in stores, ANYWHERE at ANYTIME—it’s automatically more interesting to me than any surrounding thing or idea or whatever. I have heard the music of the Beatles so much in my life, but I can always come back to it welcomingly, and the songs still feel as rich to me as they did when I heard them for the first time. Well, sometimes…it doesn’t always work that way, I guess. But hearing how George Martin and his son have reworked those songs so that they tie in together in new and fresh ways was so freaking cool. It just goes to show that we will always be able to wring inspiration from the Beatles. That’s how right they got it, even when it was wrong.

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