June 10th, 2004

A Really Real Night Shot

My obsession with "real night shots," already recounted here, has pushed me to attempt shots that make no sense. Woken up by a coughing fit on our recent camping trip, I spent twenty minutes taking pictures of the sea. It was very dark, with only the faintest glimmer of moonlight towards the horizon. But that's why the resulting images are special to me. They represent the extreme in my quest for blackness. I encourage you to turn off all the lights and stare at this picture for a while, until you start to make out details. It's a good Zen exercise. A great one, actually, since there comes a point when you can't tell whether you're seeing gradations or merely imagining them.

I like the idea of having to work for one's light.

  • Current Music
    Procession - New Order - Substance (Disc 2)

Best Pavement Song?

So I'm listening to one of my mix CDs today and I think to myself that their cover of "No More Kings" on the Schoolhouse Rock collection may actually be my favorite Pavement song, even though it's not technically theirs.

If you ever needed to be convinced that Stephen Malkmus has a command of the line between sung and spoken words, that's the one to listen to. I've always thought that his diction puts him in the Morrissey and Frank Sinatra category. "No More Kings" also has the great hesitations and in-between sounds that made early Pavement so awesome, not to mention a larger-scaled caesura in the middle and an elegantly touching guitar part right after it. Somehow, the song comes off as sincere and an ironic commentary on the need to move beyond thinking about the "kings" of rock music. Interestingly, the first customer review of the album on Amazon praises every track except "No More Kings, " which it labels "dirge-like." To each his own. I will say that there are many fine tracks on the record, with the Blind Melon one coming in second to "No More Kings" in my estimation.

  • Current Music
    the insects, frogs, and birds enjoying this rare cool night in June