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Manual - “Midnight Is Where The Day Begins”
Ascend

Confluence was an airy ambient album, very like Stars of the Lid in its ethereal swells. Ascend sounds like it’s sampling Confluence, but for a very different purpose (there are beats, for one thing). Its gentle glitches and washes of filtered instruments remind me of label mate Styrofoam, but it exudes the calmness and confidence of the band’s simpler, softer, and surprsingly, later albums. (insound)

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Nailed to the beloved body like a slave to a cross, I have learned some secrets of life which are now dimmed in my memory by the operation of that same law which ordains that the convalescent, once, cured, ceases to understand the mysterious truths laid bare by illness, and that the prisoner, set free, forgets his torture, or the conqueror, his triumph passed, forgets his glory.
— Marguerite Yourcenar, Memoirs of Hadrian
» quotes
Membrane - a box lined with one-way mirrors

Membrane - a box lined with one-way mirrors

» things

Castles etched on grains of sand

» things
Unidentified aircraft (probably military) over Texas

Unidentified aircraft (probably military) over Texas

» things

Tulsa Drone - “Risk Guitar”
Songs From A Mean Season

On their follow-up to the eerie No Wake, Tulsa Drone have greatly reinforced their sound, producing a heavier post-rock feel akin to This Will Destroy You or Saxon Shore, though it rolls more than it grows. There are also vocals, a mixed bag but not problematic. The hammered dulcimer is ever-present, but is no longer the lead instrument — a loss, if you ask me, since that truly set apart the sound, though the richer tone does have its merits. (insound)

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Sagaki Keita

» things


Upon its release, The Luminaries was the subject of praise so effusive and hyperbolic that I wondered at first whether it would be the kind of book so impenetrable, conceptual, or self-serious that only a critic could recommend it. That is not, thankfully, the case, but I think that in their rush to congratulate an incredibly talented young author on a serious literary accomplishment, these critics decided to kindly play down the book’s weaknesses while expanding upon its (considerable) strengths. Ultimately the contrivance that lends the book such grandeur causes the narrative to implode — but it sure looks good doing it.

Continued...
» books
Traditional honey-hunting by Gurung tribesman in Nepal (photo: Andrew Newey)

Traditional honey-hunting by Gurung tribesman in Nepal (photo: Andrew Newey)

» things
Johannes Janson - A Formal Garden (1766)

Johannes Janson - A Formal Garden (1766)

» art

mandrel: the bar or cylinder on which a spinning tool or workpiece (e.g. a millstone) is mounted
gabion: wicker baskets or steel drums filled with rocks and used in fortification or construction
palingenesis: rebirth or baptism; in biology, embryonic forms revisiting evolutionary history
maquis: a scrubby Mediterranean plant; also, a French resistance group in World War II
ergastulum: a subterranean prison or dungeon in which dangerous slaves were kept
fytte: archaic spelling of fit, in this case meaning a section of a poem or ballad
prorogue: to defer or postpone, especially in legislative bodies
encaustic: art formed or fixed by a burning or heating process
swivet: a state of nervous excitement, confusion, or anxiety
haruspex: one who divines the future by observing entrails
brontoscopy: divination through the sound of thunder
febrifuge: a drug or drink for reducing fever
dubitation: archaic term for doubt
ferine: alternative spelling of feral
kyst: a chest or container

» vocabulary
Opening shot of “Zatoichi’s Flashing Sword” (1964)

Opening shot of “Zatoichi’s Flashing Sword” (1964)

» things

The Drones - “I See Seaweed”
I See Seaweed

The truth is I can’t stand the way this guy sings, but he is one of the rare songwriters out there who can make up for a mouthful of marbles with the quality of his writing. Wait Long By The River… had surprising lyrical depth, and I See Seaweed, the title track in particular, does as well — juxtaposing rising sea levels with more personal human iniquities. It’s not happy music, however, so if you’re looking for something to drag you out of the ditch, this ain’t it. (buy at band website)

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An enormous flare maxing out the Solar Dynamics Observatory’s sensors, above, and split into different wavelengths, below

» things
15-year-old Jane Austen’s parodical history of England

“During his reign, Lord Cobham was burnt alive, but I forget what for.”

“It was in this reign that Joan of Arc lived & made such a row among the English. They should not have burnt her – but they did.”

15-year-old Jane Austen’s parodical history of England

“During his reign, Lord Cobham was burnt alive, but I forget what for.”

“It was in this reign that Joan of Arc lived & made such a row among the English. They should not have burnt her – but they did.”

» things
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