A blog devoted to the works of Stephin Merritt of The Magnetic Fields, The 6ths, Future Bible Heroes, The Gothic Archies, et al. This blog will feature news related to his work, as well as occasional fanboy gushes from the author. Thank you for stopping by, and may all your dreams come true.

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

"Why are you interviewing me?"

Hint Magazine has posted this interview with Stephin Merritt, wherein he pontificates about his fashion history and other topics in the realm of vanity.  While obviously it isn't the most insightful interview in the world, it's quite fun and features Mr. Merritt at the top of his game, wit-wise.  Quite enjoyable.  The interviewer is Cesar Padilla, who some may recognize from LD Beghtol's 69 Love Songs book, or as the photographer from Mr. Merritt's one and only naked photo shoot for Butt Magazine.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

More Deleted Scene(s) Than You Can Shake a Stick At!



The above is a very cute deleted scene from Strange Powers: Stephin Merritt and The Magnetic Fields.  It features Ms. Claudia Gonson taking photographs of Mr. Merritt and Mr. Daniel Handler, the products of which ended up in the booklet for The Gothic Archies' The Tragic Treasury.  I might also add that Ms. Gonson's sock collection has always made me jealous...

And speaking of that socked songstress, the video at this link is absolutely required viewing.  It features Ms. Gonson extrapolating on the newfound joys and hardships of motherhood and is, if you can believe it, several times cuter than the above video.  Oh, holy Christ, what an adorable baby.

Ever the pundit, Ms. Gonson goes on to describe some of her favorite books at different junctures in her life for NY Books here.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

A Winner is You

Firstly, I just want to say thanks so much to all of you who submitted stories for the Coraline ticket contest!!  I enjoyed them all immensely, and picking a winner hasn't been an easy feat.

However, it was a necessity.  So, I'm proud to announce that Lisa, who submitted her highly sexualized story based on "When You're A Cat" is our winner!  She's the only one who posted her story directly to the blog, so read it in the comments of the post below!  Congratulations, Lisa!  Please e-mail me your information and the date you'd like to see the show (any Tuesday, Wednesday or Thursday of its run), and we'll get your tickets out to you ASAP!

Again, thanks to all of you who participated.  I had so much fun reading the stories, especially the ones featuring me as a character (you know who you are).

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Win tickets to see Coraline in San Francisco!!

In collaboration with the SF Playhouse, Aging Spinsters would like to present you the opportunity to win a free pair of tickets to see the SF Playhouse's production of Stephin Merritt's musical Coraline!

After several weeks of correspondence with the SF Playhouse, all involved are thrilled to announce this opportunity to you, lovely readers.  The SF Playhouse is offering two tickets to any Tuesday, Wednesday, or Thursday night performance of Stephin Merritt's musical.  Lodging and air fare are not provided, but if you're a Californian or a traveller, then certainly you're in luck.

But, what would a contest be without some rules, huh?  These rules, however, are simple.  In order to win the tickets, you must write a short story based on one of the song titles from the Coraline soundtrack.  Said track list can be found here.  Whether or not the story is directly based in the world of Coraline is up to you, the author/participant.  These stories should be no more than 350 words and will be chosen subjectively by your humble author.  You can post them in the comments of this entry or e-mail me at the_hymen_of_reality at yahoo.com.  Neither method is favored over the other. 

The deadline for this contest will be a week from today, November 13th, at which point I shall announce the winner.  Good luck to all of you and I can't wait to read your stories and give you guys free tickets!

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

So many interviews!

Wow.  Lots to report today.  Encore Magazine interviews Kerthy Fix about her film and her relationship to Stephin's music here.

Stephin Merritt has also become quite an available pundit with the release of Ms. Fix's film, and is interviewed by Zachary Block here.  IFC interviews him here, and deconstructs several aspects of the film with Mr. Merritt, which offers probably more insight into his real opinion on the film than has been offered previously.  So bully for that.

By far the best interview, though, and maybe amongst my favorite interviews with Mr. Merritt ever, is done by The Vulture.  Mr. Merritt appears to be in rare chatty form and pontificates about his disdain for giggling and children (and presumably giggling children), graphic novels, and his dream to design an amusement park.  My personal favorite part, however, is when he discusses at length his appreciation for Fleetwood Mac's Tusk, an album that has long been a favorite of mine.  Many moons ago, Stephin Merritt was slated to write a book about Tusk for Continuum's 33 1/3 series of books, and his few sentences about it in this interview make me pine for the days when that was a logistic possibility.  Anyhow, much kudos to Lizzy Goodman for a wonderful interview.

Strange Powers: Stephin Merritt and The Magnetic Fields opens today at Film Forum in New York City.  The band will be in attendance for a Q&A after the screening.  Tickets are long sold out, but worry not, gentle readers!  The band will reappear on Friday October 29th for another Q&A.  Tickets for that event can be found here

And don't forget All Our Friends Are in New York, the Stephin Merritt exhibit (featuring a DJ set by the one and only) which happens tomorrow at Other Music in New York City.  Extensive information can be found here.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Interviews Galore!

Listen to Stephin Merritt and Claudia Gonson on The Takeaway right here.  In it, Stephin compares himself to Lady Gaga, Claudia compares the pair of them to John Frankenheimer, and the name "Gay & Loud" is explained once again.  Well worth listening to.

Stephin is interviewed solo by the Wall Street Journal here, an again Lady Gaga comes slipping into the conversation, oddly enough.  But, bagels are also discussed, redeeming the WSJ's credibility in my mind.

Finally, Kerthy Fix and Gail O'Hara discuss their relationships with Stephin, the film, and Stephin's music here.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Three Random Bits of Information

Stephin Merritt and Claudia Gonson will be interviewed tomorrow on NPR's program The Takeaway.  Check your local NPR stations for times!!

Oh, and I guess I'll say congratulations to new mother Claudia Gonson!  I've wanted to report this for a while now, but haven't due to Ms. Gonson's lack of a public statement about the fact.  But, The Magnetic Fields recently posted this picture on their Twitter account and it shows two very happy-looking women.  I'm sure I speak on behalf of all of my readers, even the prudes, when I express happiness for the two of them.  Cheers!

Lastly, I got my copy of Esopus today featuring Stephin Merritt's new song "Meerkat Manor!"  I had to listen a few times as I was laughing too hard the first couple go-'rounds.  The song is ludicrous, guys, but oh-so-much fun.  The song is credited as being written, performed, and produced by Mr. Merritt, which means he's done one helluva effect on his vocal track, because it sounds nothing like his voice.  I'm sure I won't be the only one to laugh at its ridiculousness, but I'm also sure you'll all love it. 

For the time being, you can listen to a bit of the song here!  Thanks to Nick for pointing this out.

Friday, October 22, 2010

Reno Dakota on "Reno Dakota"

Pitchfork posted this clip from Strange Powers: Stephin Merritt and The Magnetic Fields of Reno Dakota discussing The Magnetic Fields' song named after him:



It's marvelous!  He talks about his relationship with Stephin (and the unfortunate parameters he placed upon it), how the song has effected his life, and a strange visit to a cool-sounding doctor.  But, in the coolest part of all, he sings his response song entitled (cleverly) "Stephin Merritt," the lyrics to which have forever been published in LD Beghtol's legendary tome in tribute to 69 Love Songs.  What a wonderful little clip!

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Interview with Kerthy Fix

Ms. Kerthy Fix is interviewed on the See it Loud podcast, episode 14.  Listen to it here.  She discusses working with Stephin Merritt, playing his straight man, and an innumerable amount of other interesting topics.

Big blog-related news coming soon, readers.  I'm very excited about a lot of things right now is all I'll say for now, but expect something in the coming weeks!

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Interview with Stephin and Gail

Time Out New York has posted this short but wonderful interview with Mr. Stephin Merritt and Ms. Gail O'Hara.  Stephin discusses his time as an employee of Time Out New York, his relationship with Ms. O'Hara, and more.  Highly recommended.

But, recommended more highly than that is clicking this link, which will take you to an archive of all of Mr. Merritt's articles written whilst working out TONY.  Surely reading all of this will eat up the rest of my night, and I'm certain I shan't be alone in that. 

Monday, October 18, 2010

Gospel Music

Owen Holmes, known primarily as the bassist for the band Black Kids, is undertaking a solo project called Gospel Music.  Their first EP (whose cover is featured above), is entitled Duettes and features the lovely Ms. Shirley Simms on the track "Gamophobia."  The record will be released November 29.

Eternal gratitude to Mr. Carlos Pena for pointing this out to me and for being a swell fella all around.

Friday, October 15, 2010

Press Release for Coraline

So, in my utmost idiocy, I missed the initial posting of the press release for the San Francisco Playhouse's production of Coraline!  So much amazing information is divulged! 

Firstly, as would be expected, none of the original cast will be reappearing in the west coast production.  But, it's interesting to note that Coraline be played by an actual 12-year-old this time around!  Her name is Maya Donato and she will go from playing Annie to playing Coraline.  I think we'll all agree to be awed by such range, no? 

Robert Moreno is listed as the play's musical director, about which I'm curious.  In the New York production, Phyllis Chen was the pianist for all songs (not to mention all three types of pianos), and I'm wondering if Mr. Moreno's role will be similar.  Either way, I'm very excited about all this information, and even moreso to go see the play.  Which is still happening, by the way, even though it's certainly going to cost me both arms and both legs. 

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

New Strange Powers Trailer

Three updates in one day?  What is this, February 2010 minus a whole shit load of readers? 

Well, I'm not just being obnoxious, I promise.  All three of these updates have contained relevant information, but this one perhaps most of all.  Watch the trailer for the theatrical release of Strange Powers: Stephin Merritt and The Magnetic Fields below!



Not a ton of new information for losers like myself who've yet to see the film, but enough to titilate me and warrant another update on my little blog.

Drink Tea with Stephin Merritt!

Independent radio station WFMU is currently hosting an online charity auction with a bevy of interesting items up for sale.  There are several old comic books, some paintings, and what-have-you, but most importantly is the chance to have tea with Stephin Merritt!!  Were I a New Yorker, I would be the winning bidder, no doubt, but alas, I instead have to pass this information on to you lot and wish you the best of luck. 

Check out their other auctions as well if you're interested in playing with Yo La Tengo or owning some original John Fahey paintings.  Or, really, if you're interested in helping out a cool independent radio station.

Remate

Stephin Merritt is featured on a recording by Spanish singer Remate.  The song is entitled "Gigante" and also features collaborations from past Merritt collaborators Pinky Weitzman, Charles Newman, and LD Beghtol (who does a whopping amount of work on the song).  You can download the song and listen to the entire digital EP here.  It is apparently going to be released on Remate's upcoming album, Superluv, though I'm unable to find a specific release date.  If anyone has any information on that, I'd love to hear it!

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Esopus

Mr. Merritt will be contributing a track to a CD being released with the art magazine Esopus's fifteenth issue.  The song will apparently be a tribute to one of the few television programs for which Stephin Merritt has expressed adoration, Meerkat Manor.  Mr. Merritt expounds on his love for this show in this interview from a couple years back.

Obviously, I'm excited at the prospect of new Stephin Merritt songs, but it's odd exactly HOW excited I am!!  After all, this year has been so goddamn good to me in terms of new Merritt songs.  I am, though, a selfish cock.

Thanks to the humble but wonderful folks over at Stephinsongs for this bit of information.  Much respect and love to them.

Monday, September 27, 2010

Gathering of Country Houses, Merritt Museum

The films in the "Gathering of Country Houses" series have been announced!  I must say, having seen all but one of the films being curated by Mr. Merritt, this lineup is fan-fucking-tastic!!  Chinese Roulette and The Draughtsman's Contract would both probably fall into my list of 20 or 30 favorite films ever.  So, obviously, if you can make it out to this event, fucking do it!

Other Music in NYC will be hosting an exhibiton of Stephin-related photos and memorabilia on October 28.  Mr. Merritt will be DJ-ing the event, giving me yet another reason to resent not living in New York City. 

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Films Curated by Stephin, New Interview

Stephin Merritt will be curating a series of films at 92Y Tribeca in celebration of the release of Strange Powers: Stephin Merritt and The Magnetic Fields.  The theme of the films is described as "Gathering of Country Houses," which Stephin explains quite eloquently here.

I also neglected to post this interview with Stephin wherein we learn Irving's musical abilities, Stephin's fondness for cassettes, and a bevy of other information.  There's also this interview with Sam Davol about the Films at the Gate film festival.  Well worth watching!

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Coraline in San Francisco

Best news ever alert, people.  Stephin Merritt's Coraline musical's second staging has been announced!  It will be part of San Francisco Playhouse's 2010-2011 season, starting this November 16.  Information on the cast has yet to be announced, but one can only hope that David Greenspan will reprise his role as the Other Mother, as his performance seems pretty flawless to me.  We shall see.

As for this little author, a road trip to San Francisco seems imminent.

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Interview with Mr. Merritt

KEXP has posted this new interview with Stephin Merritt, Kerthy Fix, and Gail O'Hara discussing Strange Powers: Stephin Merritt and The Magnetic Fields and various other subjects.  It's a damn good interview, especially if you, like me, are a fan of camaraderie. 

Of particular distress, though, is Mr. Merritt's lack of plans to release his score to 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea!!  Those of you who had the opportunity to see it live, consider yourselves really lucky.  For those of you in my shoes, lets start e-mailing Criterion weekly begging them to beg Mr. Merritt to release it.  It's got to work, right?

I'd also like to use this forum to complain about the city of Chicago not getting a screening of Strange Powers.  Now that theatrical dates are being announced, I'd expect some theater around here to screen the goddamn thing.  C'mon, Chi-City!

Monday, July 12, 2010

A Pair of Interviews with Ms. Gonson

Ms. Gonson is interviewed by Under the Radar, a New Zealand publication, right here.  It's a really terrific interview and offers a lot of insight into her perspective on the documentary and other such things.  Highly recommended.

I also know she recently did an interview with a New Zealand radio show.  However, I'm having no luck tracking down a transcription or a recording of said event.  Any help would be much appreciated!!

I'm sorry for the lack of updates - I've recently moved and don't have any internet connection yet.  Just this shitty little library to serve my needs for the time being.

Saturday, July 3, 2010

Just a review and an update

Guys, it appears that I've died or fallen from grace with Merritt lately.  Neither are true; there's just been a crippling comination of a dirth of Stephin Merritt news and an abundance of things going on in my personal life.

Still, though!  I have consistently prided myself on this blog's consistent updates and I don't plan to change that now.  I've missed the boat on several reviews of 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea and Strange Powers: Stephin Merritt and The Magnetic Fields, but let's let bygones be bygones.  Here's this really extraordinary review of 20KUTS featuring a wealth of really awesome photographs.  It comes highly recommended.

This is where I patiently await the day I can announce the new Future Bible Heroes album...  Tick tock, tick tock...

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Grand Guignol, other random awesome shit


Pictured here are Mr. Neil Gaiman, Ms. Amanda Palmer, and then some other guy.  I post this photo because Mr. Gaiman has revealed some potentially breaking news over at his Twitter feed.  It reads as follows:

"Just got off the phone with Stephin Merritt.  The Grand Guignol Musical we've talked about for years just came together in my head.  JOY."

I've known the two were collaborating thanks to Mr. Gaiman's wonderful blog, but this just takes the cake as far as I'm concerned.  Those of you who might not know what Grand Guignol means are humbly referred to this site.  But, for those of you who skip that link, HOLY SHIT, RIGHT?  I'm not sure how many crossover Stephin Merritt/Neil Gaiman fans there really are (though common sense leads me estimate tons and tons of us), but those two combined sensibilities working in Grand Guignol seems like almost too good an idea. 

There's also this interview with Stephin Merritt, which was initially published a few months ago in the midst of all the Realism promotion hubbub, but reposted now due to audio clips of Stephin Merritt talking.  How exciting, right?  Ahem. 

Not to mention the buttload of new screenings of Strange Powers: Stephin Merritt and The Magnetic Fields!  It's showing all over, and I recommend you check out the list of screenings and DONATE ALL YOUR CASH TO the official website.  Still no signs of a Chicago screening, which irks a certain blogger more than he'd like to admit.

Sunday, May 23, 2010

69 Love Scenes

69 Love Scenes is a three-night play written by a gaggle of writers based on 69 Love Songs.  The Gnap Theatre in Austin, TX will be presenting it in its workshop form May 21 - June 12.  Tickets can be purchased here.  For more information on the play, check out this interview with organizer Kerri Lendo

Personally, I find this idea so exciting!  I know there have been several revues of 69 Love Songs, a ballet based on it, LD Beghtol's marvelous book, and now this.  I love that people are still so inspired by the album this long after its release.  Of course, I'd love to go, but Texas is too damn hot for me.

Also, if you want to see more photos of Stephin Merritt at the Obie Awards show (including one of him smiling (!!)), I recommend clicking this link.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

SM at the Obies



Stephin Merritt has won a prestigous Obie award, it would seem!!  Mr. Merrritt has won in the category of music and lyrics for (what else?) Coraline.  Congratultions to Mr. Merritt and all parties involved.  At this point, I'm sure Mr. Merritt's resumé is dauntingly long and, of course, very impressive. 

Oh, and can I just mention how much I adore the above photograph? 

Monday, May 17, 2010

More reviews, SM appearance

First off, I have a couple of reviews to share.  Spinning Platters has posted this review of 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea, and I continue to be amazed by the continous nonplussitude with which people are reacting to the film.  Let's wait and see after the next couple of screenings, I suppose.  There's also Brooklyn The Borough's pretty well-thought-out review of Strange Powers: Stephin Merritt and The Magnetic Fields and Claudia Gonson's performance at the Bell House (of which I still really want a video, people).

Stephin Merritt is also slated to appear at the June 7 screening of the documentary.  Filmmakers Kerthy Fix and Gail O'Hara are slated to appear and both the June 7 and June 6 screenings.

Saturday, May 15, 2010

20k in LA

The Cinefamily has announced a presentation of Stephin Merritt's 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea score!!  Information can be found here.  There will be two performances on July 11, one at 6:30pm and one at 9:30pm.  Tickets can be purchased here and here, respectively.

I love that this is touring as much as it is!!  Here's hoping to a show in Chicago, though I won't be holding my breath, to be sure.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

New interview!

Popmatters has posted this new interview with Stephin Merritt.  Am I the only one who is slightly dismayed that Stephin Merritt may well never produce the reggaeton album of my dreams!?

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Claudia Gonson video, great review of Strange Powers

I found this video of Claudia Gonson and Kerthy Fix discussing Strange Powers: Stephin Merritt and The Magnetic Fields, but I can't watch it because I'm at work right now.  I hope you all enjoy it, though!  I'm still waiting for a video to surface of Ms. Gonson playing "Beauty" from the other night's Chris Knox benefit in NYC.

Also, I'm pleased to link to this review of the film, which I truly believe is the best one I've thus far.  It's a great summation, and the only one to approach the film from any sort of analytical viewpoint.  Guys, I'm far too excited for this movie.  Thanks so much to Mr. Jim Perretta for this review!

Are these consistent mini updates with no real information frustrating?  I certainly fuckin' hope not.  There will be a real entry before the week is up, I promise.  Don't give up on me, you all, I love you far too much.

Friday, May 7, 2010

More film-related posts

The Village Voice has posted this very excellent Q&A with Ms. Kerthy Fix, director of Strange Powers: Stephin Merritt and The Magnetic Fields.  Of particular interest is the bit where they talk about Stephin Merritt's fanbase.  Several astute observations are made in this regard, to say the least.

Then, there's this review of 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea (thanks to the increasingly-mentioned Nick David for this review) which makes the exact same complaints as the last one, right down to the MST3K reference.  This is an unexpected complaint, really, but doesn't damper my excitedness over hearing the work.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

A Real 20k Review


Thanks very much to Mr. Jack Curtis Dubowsky for the above picture of part of Mr. Merritt's score.  Here is his well-written review of the event, featuring a couple of more photographs of Mr. Merritt's instrumental setup.  It's hard for me to see Stephin Merritt actually mocking the film, but I will withhold judgement and remain objective as I haven't yet seen the film.  But, still!  It's a damn good review, and for now, the only one available on the whole damn internet, so I appreciate it.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Theatrical Release!

Strange Powers: Stephin Merritt and The Magnetic Fields is getting a theatrical release!  Starting October 27 at Film Forum in New York, the film will be making its rounds across North America at some as yet unannounced theaters.  The film is being distributed by Variance Films.

This is, needless to say, fantastic fucking news.

Reviews of 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea have yet to pour in.  Hopefully there will be some in the coming few days.

20k Mini-Review, the Best Song Title of All Time, and BREAKING NEWS

"Saw 20k Under the Sea (1916) accompanied by Stephin Merritt at the Castro.  Highlight: the "I Don't Want to Wear Pants" song."
-
dhelder, via Twitter

And, so the first review of 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea is a positive one.

But, in more breaking news territory, apparently, Stephin Merritt merely considers this score the first part in a trilogy!  I hope more news on this is to come, as well as more positive reviews of the score (particularly this pants song).

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Reviews of the film

What with all the screenings of Strange Powers: Stephin Merritt and The Magnetic Fields, there's been a myriad of reviews that have gone unmentioned on Aging Spinsters, mostly because they're about a paragraph long and rarely offer new insight into the film.  As one of the few Stephinfans who hasn't seen the film and has no solidified plans to do so in the foreseeable future, this has been frustrating to say the least.  But, there seems to have been an influx of decent reviews in the past days.

Letters Have No Arms offers brief summation of some key scenes, most notably Stephin's surefire method to annoy Germans and his absolutely fabulous description of Claudia ("As other people go, she's okay.").  Plus, they have a few very cool photos posted, including the one seen here.  The Boston Phoenix describes the film as "the most penetrating portrait of Merritt to date," which is cool, certainly, but isn't saying a whole lot.

Thus far, all the negative reviews have focused on the film's lack of dramatic impact, and the reviews from Panic Manual and Toronto Screen Shots aren't exceptions (though the former repeatedly calls Ms. Claudia Gonson "Cynthia," so it's harder for me to take it 100% seriously).  If anything, though, this kind of talk is only making me more excited for the film!  Just a little glimpse into that world is all I ask of it, and every review says that is primarily what the film offers.

If there are any readers who have seen the film (ahem), I'd certainly love for you to post your thoughts on the film.  I'd love to hear what you all have to say about it.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

An excellent interview, and some Molly Ringwald

The Examiner has posted this brief but excellent interview with Stephin Merritt regarding 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea.  It features this mindblowingly exciting quote:

"Something cyberpunk, I guess: It couldn't really have existed till this year, but in a subtle way. My score is a musicalization, where the dialog is vaguely lip-synched by live singers, and there are songs about the movie, and then sound effects appropriate to an old science fiction film."

The fact that I won't be seeing this makes me so, so sad.  Songs about the movie?  Live singerS?  PLURAL?  Sounds like Mr. Merritt is in top form here.  It makes me wonder what the likelihood of an eventual DVD release really would be; I hope with a hope stronger than hope that one will arise.

Also, the very beautiful Molly Ringwald has plenty of nice things to say about Mr. Merritt, Kiki and Herb, and countless other things here.  Apparently, Mr. Merritt told her she would be good in the role of the Other Mother in Coraline.  What a world!

Monday, April 26, 2010

Seattle Performance of 20,000 Leagues

A performance of Stephin Merritt's score to 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea at the Paramount Theater in Seattle has just been announced!!  The performance will take place on June 9th; tickets are $25 and can be purchased here starting this Friday.

Needless to say, I am very excited about the potential prospect of more performances of this piece.  Seattle and San Francisco are both too far away from me for me to get overly excited, but my fingers are crossed for more announcements.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

More screenings, Daniel Handler event

I've added some screenings of the documentary to the sidebar over there to the right.  Most interesting, by far, is the one at the Bell House in Brooklyn on May 5th.  Apparently, Ms. Claudia Gonson will be introducing the film with an autobiographical musical monologue.  Intriguing to say the least.  Oh, how I hope that thing finds its way to Youtube.

Mr. Daniel Handler will be part of a reading for the upcoming book You're a Horrible Person, But I Like You: The Believer Book of Advice, a book of bad advice to which Mr. Handler is a contributor.  Information can be found here.

A wonderful band I'd not previously heard before named Br'er did a cover of "Irma," which can be found on their Myspace.  You can download the song here.  The band's other music comes highly recommended from this blogger as well.  Thanks very much to Mr. Benjamin Schurr for creating some really lovely tunes and for pointing me in the direction of said tunes.

And, hell, it's totally worth mentioning that Insound shipped my copy of the 69 Love Songs vinyl box!!  I am, needless to say, very excited.

I will be leaving up the "Like a Snowman" file until this coming Wednesday.  Snatch it up while you can.

Monday, April 12, 2010

Like A Snowman







"My idol, Irving Berlin, wrote “White Christmas,” which is the best-selling song of all time—likely to remain so. So, when I think, “What shall I do today?” I inevitably think, “What would Irving do?” And sometimes, it’s “Write a Christmas song.”"

Stephin Merritt is consistently labeled, no-doubt to his consistent chagrin, as a singer/songwriter, but it's important to remember that the emphasis of his modus operandi is on the latter part of that label.  On recording Odetta, Stephin said that he felt as if she had taken his song ("Waltzing Me All the Way Home" from The 6ths' Hyacinths & Thistles) and "catapulted it into the stratosphere" like he had never seen before.  And, while we all no-doubt love Mr. Merritt's voice, this comment paired with the above quote makes for a rather poignant collection of thoughts.

Amongst the most stratosphere-catapulted songs in Mr. Merritt's songbook is "Like a Snowman," written for the fabulous Kiki and Herb's Broadway show.  Much like the first half of The Wayward Bus is about Phil Spector songs, I've always felt like "Like a Snowman" was written more about "White Christmas" than Christmas itself.  But, that performance?  It feels almost detached from Mr. Merritt's sensibilities in some ways, and is wholly a Kiki and Herb song.  It takes place in their world, and they blow it out of the water in their own ways.  Though the songwriting is wholly that of Mr. Merritt's (and feels as such throughout), the song is funneled through and ultimately made whole by Kiki and Herb.

Absolutely one of the greatest aspects of Mr. Merritt's work is its eccentricity, and this comment is not made solely in regards to genre experimentation.  Mr. Merritt's songs are at once artistic statements and catchy pop songs, and can be viewed from as many angles as there are listeners.  "Like a Snowman," of course, is no exception in that it is an absolutely lovely Christmas song, but it's also a heartbreaking story of love once had.  Kenny Mellman singing "I'll give you everything, my love" never fails to send a shiver down my spine.  Justin Bond inhabits entirely the character of the song and one can feel years of unreal forlorn, bittersweet, aching love oozing from that croon, particularly on that extended "snooooowman" at the tail end of the song.

Mr. Merritt did write another Christmas song for Kiki and Herb, which was discussed briefly in the comments of the previous post.  It is entitled "You Should See It in the Snow."  To sum up, I know little about the song, other than that it was written about 9/11 and performed at their Broadway show.  I expressed interest in e-mailing Kenny Mellman about the song, but then I realized that in order to do such a thing, one would need Mr. Mellman's e-mail address.  So, instead, if any of you all know anything about the song, I'd love to hear it.

Anyhow, I've uploaded "Like a Snowman."  I'm only leaving this up for a couple of days because, really, I encourage everyone to buy the CD upon which it was released.  It benefits AIDS research and I doubt there are many greater causes to benefit in the world today; not to mention you're remunerated with at least one absolutely beautiful song.
LINK REMOVED

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Amnesia

Recently, a reader of this blog asked me to transcribe the lyrics to The Magnetic Fields' "Amensia."  In so doing, I found myself thinking a lot about the song, perhaps more than I had before.  Particularly, of course, its lyrics, some of which I found myself struggling to decipher.  Here is my transcription:

You mustn't put the Sun in your mouth
She's the filthiest girl in the world
She gets really dirty when she sets in the south
Y'know, she can't help it she's a Chelsea girl

Oh, yeah
Amnesia

My father's house gave birth to a car
That could burrow like a mole underground
It woke up the neighbors when it cried in the night
Y'know, baby cars can make an awful sound

And induce
Amnesia

Medusa turned her banker to stone
And she pilfered the keys to his car
She's driving cross country, but wherever she goes
She turns worthless people into modern art

Just like that
Amnesia

Many thanks once more to Mr. Nick David for amending my original transcription of these lyrics.  

I adore this song.  I have from the moment I first heard that jangly guitar intro and the fun little splat of a guitar before Stephin's last utterance of the word "amnesia" so many years ago.  I think its surrealist imagery lends itself more toward Susan Anway-era Magnetic Fields and I'd love to hear "Kings" fade out and for this song to emerge, but I'm magnanimously grateful for the skeletal version that does exist.  It provides a strange context for a period of The Magnetic Fields' career that I have unfortunately only been able to read about as opposed to truly having experienced it.

Stephin Merritt, of course, disagrees with all of my bullshit.  Quoth Chickfactor magazine:

"I recently downloaded, from disgusting evil website n*****r, a crummy bootleg recording of an embarrassingly awful live performance of an unreleased song of mine, labeled without any indication it wasn't from a record.  This is going out all over the world, under my name, and there seems to be nothing I can do about it.  I have spontaneously performed works in progress for my audience when it seemed appropriate, prefaced by a little apology spiel, but for someone to just steal that, take it out of context, and put it up on the web is a real, major betrayal.  It has done such damage to my relations with audiences-my sense of trust is shattered-that I can't perform unreleased songs anymore."

This gives the song so much more history and effect, I think.  Of course, one can hardly find reason to disagree with Mr. Merritt here (and one now understands why I have yet to link to a mp3 of the song), but it is a shame that he is embarrassed by it so.  I understand that their live shows at the time might not have felt conducive to proper reproductions of his songs (though, all the boots I've heard/seen have been lovely), but I will always find "Amnesia" to be a wonderfully pleasant song.  For the breech of trust, I am sincere in my apology to Mr. Merritt, but selfishly happy for the song's existence.

Also, while you're here, go read this review of Strange Powers: Stephin Merritt and The Magnetic Fields!

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Woo



Holy fucking Christ!!  This is the new trailer for Strange Powers: Stephin Merritt and The Magnetic Fields and it is so incredible.  It's mostly John Woo (but other members of the band as well and Claudia Gonson's mother) talking about the writing and recording of 69 Love Songs, and its monumental impact upon its release.  Oh, man, this movie is going to be so awesome, you guys.  Eternal gratitude to Nick for this link, manohman is it awesome.

There's also this interview with Mr. Merritt, featuring his most candid comments about the documentary thus far.  Thanks very much to Jan for this interview, and kudos to him for getting such a good one.  And let's not forget this interview in French which does no good at all to an idiotic monolingual boy like myself.

Last but not least is this review of The Magnetic Fields' show in Stockholm.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Boring

Negative reviews of Strange Powers: Stephin Merritt and The Magnetic Fields have thus far been non-existent.  But, The Playlist really seems to hate the film, due to its lack of dramatic impact.  Honestly, this makes me even more excited to see the film, if only because I don't agree with the fact that a documentary's purpose is rooted in portraying dramatic events.  If the film is informative, isn't its goal achieved?  I dunno, that's a discussion for grad students to have, not me.

Not to fear, though.  Gordon and The Whale gives the film a glowing review, as did Matt Dentler (former head of the SXSW film festival.

Lastly, The Line of Best Fit reviewed the Leamington Spa show and Kirkeby Kritikk reviewed the Oslo show.

Good stuff should be coming from this blog soon, I promise.  Ideas have been flowing, and I've become pretty excited about some of them.  I thank you all for your patience!

Friday, March 26, 2010

Knox

Ms. Claudia Gonson is slated to perform at a benefit for Chris Knox (of Tall Dwarfs/Toy Love/6ths fame) in New York City on May 6.  Chris Knox, a brilliant musician in his own right, suffered some life-altering strokes last year and the proceeds from this show will be going to his recovery.  Stephin also contributed a cover of the Tall Dwarfs song "Beauty" to the Knox benefit/tribute album charmingly entitled Stroke earlier this year.

The absolutely lovely M+E are offering six signed LP copies of Distortion for $25 a pop at their site.  Snatch 'em up quick!

Couple more reviews of The Magnetic Fields' London show at the Barbican.  MusicOMH had a swell time at the show and talks about it in a nearly religious way, which is cool.  T5M uses the phrase "indie-rock band" in its first sentence of its review, much to my chagrin, but the rest of the review isn't bad at all, so all is (mostly) forgiven.

Footage of The Magnetic Fields playing Stockholm can be found here.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Tammy

Strange Powers: Stephin Merritt and The Magnetic Fields is blowing up!  It's been announced as part of two new film festivals, the first being the film's European premiere in Dublin, Ireland, the second being the Independent Film Festival in Boston, MA.  The Skytram Express has posted what proves to be by far the best review of the film published thus far, despite the consistent misspelling "Stephen."

Ben Gibbard of Death Cab for Cutie/Postal Service fame, known for covering Stephin Merritt songs in the past and for being married to one of the most beautiful women in the world, can be heard covering "I Don't Want to Get Over You" here.  It's lovely.

Here is a look at what The Magnetic Fields have been playing on the European leg of the tour, which is almost identical to the last show they played in New York City, so it looks like some certain little blogger deserves a cookie or a medal or something.  There are also some other pretty awesome photographs of the band to be found in the same album.  Thanks very much to Mr. David Eudaldo Farre´ for this link.

And, lastly, but most certainly not least, here is a video of the lovely Ms. Shirley Simms singing Tammy Wynette's "Stand By Your Man" in Ms. Wynette's trailer:

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Manchester

Strange Powers: Stephin Merritt and The Magnetic Fields will now be screened at the Torontonian film festival Hot Docs, as is evidenced here.  Lucky Canucks.  Incidentally, the film is briefly reviewed by The Quietus; it seems the only complaint any review has made thus far is the film's lack of dramatic oomph, which is interesting, but not something about which I'm worried.  As a fan of the man and the band in question, I'm sure it will be compelling to me through and through.

The U.K. must be conducive to prompt journalism, as there are tons of reviews of The Magnetic Fields' shows at the Barbican Hall, Manchester Cathedral, and Leamington Assembly Hall.  Firstly, David Green reviews the show here.  The Arts Desk raves about the show in a very well thought-out review here.  And, finally, the astoundingly well-named Ukulele Porn describes the band as "strange, charismatic, and very special," which is, of course, all too appropriate.  Read the review right here.

Stephin Merritt is interviewed on a BBC radio show based out of Manchester here.  It's a really great interview, in which Mr. Merritt seems on top form and is henceforth asked why he isn't a stand-up comedian.  He also claims to have not quite yet written the score to 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea yet, which might be worrisome if it weren't for my knowledge of Mr. Merritt's intense writing process.  Go forth and listen, all!

Monday, March 22, 2010

"Indie"

The Manchester show received this review from a nonplussed viewer.  To be quite honest, I'm getting tired of people approaching Mr. Merritt's work as if it were part of the indie-rock canon.  People expecting to go see the band and be treated to a show similar to that of any other band working today are really only feeding into the minutiae of sameness that indie culture encourages.  The Magnetic Fields are not a band that can be so easily lumped, in my opinion, and I'm waiting for the day when Mr. Merritt is removed from it.  But, quoth the man himself:

"I could make only calypso music for the next hundred years and win all the calypso Grammys for the next hundred years, and still be found only in the indie tock section of every store and online retailer."

Sad state of affairs, to be sure.

But, to be a bit more upbeat now, I recommend a quick listen to this charming cover of The Magnetic Fields' "Grand Canyon," by the regrettably-named The Magnetic Feeler-Uppers.  I wish I were making that name up, yes, but the song is quite good and well worth your three minutes.

Perhaps most excitingly today, though, is this hour-long interview with Kerthy Fix, director of Strange Powers: Stephin Merritt and The Magnetic Fields.  Despite the interviewers' lack of in-depth knowledge in Mr. Merritt's work itself, the interview offers tons of great insight into Ms. Fix's and Mr. O'Hara's work process on the film and their relationship with their subject.  Kudos to the interviewers, for sure.  Unfortunately for me, however, hearing this only makes me more painfully giddy about this film.  Driving to Durham is looking less and less likely, so I'm having to fall back on my original plan of waiting on the DVD, which certainly does not sound like a fun prospect.

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Reviews

Inside Pulse Movies has reviewed Strange Powers: Stephin Merritt and The Magnetic Fields here.  Unfortunately, this may be the only review ever linked to on Aging Spinsters that features the word "blowjob."  Fortunately, the review dishes on lots of juicy details about the film in its few short paragraphs.  It is recommended.

And, while we're talking about the film, it's probably worth noting that it has been confirmed as part of a film festival in Buenos Aires!

The Magnetic Fields' show at the Manchester Cathedral is reviewed here, which features the picture to the right.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Films

Mr. Merritt is appearing on BBC 6, like, pretty much as I type this.  I'm not sure if the recording will be archived or not, but I will get back on it and let you know if I find anything out.  I'm listening to him play "Seduced and Abandoned" on his uke right now, and it's lovely.  I am befuddled as to why this wasn't part of the set list on the tour.

Strange Powers: Stephin Merritt and The Magnetic Fields has been confirmed as part of a Floridian film festival.  The times for its screening at Full Frame Festival in Durham have been confirmed as well.

In other film-related news, all you San Franciscans need to go buy tickets to see Mr. Merritt's score to 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea right here, right now.

After giving it a think (thanks in part to frequent commenter Mr. Nick David), I think the fanboy gushes that are mentioned in the introductory paragraph to this blog are going to become more prominent in the coming days.  It is my hope that this will generate some discussion amongst us diehard fans and keep the blog alive in the waning days of really active news/interviews/tour news/whatever.  It'd be much appreciated if you lot pitched in some ideas of what you'd like to see and all that jazz.  Much love to you all.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Powers

Strange Powers: Stephin Merritt and The Magnetic Fields premiered the other night.  Thus far, reviews are scant, presumably because people are still in the thick of SXSW.  But, I have happened upon two reviews, both of which offer a pretty positive insight into the film.  This one from A.V. Club Austin complains only of the film's lack of dramatic oomph, but does acknowledge it is a nice insight into Mr. Merritt's mind, life, and process.  This one from St. Edward's University Online is short and sweet, but says several nice things about the film.

It looks as if news might be coming to a slow halt.  Throughout February and March, this blog was crazy kinds of active, but I expect it to move at a more reasonable pace now.  I'm not quite sure how I feel about that yet, but we shall see.  Thanks again to all you lovely, lovely readers of mine.

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Songs

WNYC posted some recordings of The Magnetic Fields' show at Brooklyn Academy of Music last month. Songs included are "Acoustic Guitar," "The Nun's Litany," "All the Umbrellas in London," and "Fear of Trains."  The recordings are crisp and lovely and can be found here.  For those of you who missed the opportunity to see the band, I particularly recommend "Fear of Trains," as Ms. Simms' vocals are stu-fucking-pendous.

It's also worth noting that The Magnetic Fields' American tour ended last night, meaning We Are Having a Hootenanny will be coming to a close soon.  Sad, sad times.  The European leg of the tour starts next week.  The Magnetic Fields played a pretty different set list last night at Town Hall, an amalgamation of the two they've been playing, plus "Papa Was a Rodeo."  It's my assumption that this is the set they'll be playing in Europe, although they probably just wanted to mix it up for folks who went to all three shows.

Friday, March 12, 2010

Handler

So, it's not really news per se, but I found this pretty interesting.  Years ago, I read this playlist/interview with TMF accordion superstar Mr. Daniel Handler wherein he says that he wrote a screenplay inspired by The 6ths' song "Give Me Back My Dreams."  I never thought much of this other than "That's pretty goddamn cool," but apparently, it's something about which I should have thought more!  Salty Features lists the film as being in progress, much to my shock and awe, and the film has its own IMDB page.  Whoa.

Back in the realm of more Merritt-related news, The New York Times posted this review of The Magnetic Fields' Town Hall show.  Then, there's this review featuring a really glorious snippet of stage banter from Mr. Merritt.  The Awl posted this really, really great review as well, featuring a pretty cool little backstory of the author's relationship to the band. Also: I'd kill to see Stephin Merritt sing "Bela Lugosi's Dead."

The previously-mentioned-on-this-blog Sound of Indie posted a file of The Magnetic Fields playing "You and Me and the Moon" at the Brooklyn show last month.  And, not that I'm encouraging this sort of thing, but there's also a video of the band playing "Better Things" last night in Town Hall.  Pretty beautiful stuff.



Thursday, March 11, 2010

Marimba


The above photograph features Mr. Merritt and Mr. Ethan Cohn playing Erik Satie's "Vexations" on marimba.  "Vexations" is about an eight-hour long piece of music consisting of the same small bar repeated over and over 840 times in a row.  Stephin Merritt contributed about 20 minutes to a performance back in 2006, the audio of which can be heard right here.  The entire performance, (featuring Margaret Leng Tan, noted for having played toy piano on The 6ths' "I've Got New York"), can be found here.

This review of The Magnetic Fields' show last night at Town Hall features a myriad fantastic pictures from the show, including the best ones of Laura Barrett I've seen thus far.  Ms. Barrett was, by the way, fascinating.  I bought both her CDs.  But, anyhoozle, it's a nice review, even if they do misspell Ms. Simms' last name.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

News


You guys, you have to understand that I am very tired right now and want to go to bed pretty fucking badly.  As such, I am not going to post every single review I found of the shows I saw, just a select few with pictures.  I hope you can find it in your hearts to forgive me and know that the blog will be back in its usual form probably tomorrow.

But, before I post those reviews, I must say that Strange Powers: Stephin Merritt and The Magnetic Fields has been announced as part of the  Full Frame Documentary Film Festival in Durham, NC!!  This is particularly exciting news for me, as Durham is within a somewhat (ahem) reasonable driving distance from where I live, which means I will most likely be attending the screening of the film.  Of course, I will let it be known loud and proud when this is confirmed.  The screening times for the film will be announced on March 18th.

Limited tickets have been released for all three of The Magnetic Fields' shows in New York.  They can be purchased right here.

Here are some pictures of The Fields' show in St. Louis (which was an awesome show in a shitty venue).  The ultra-cool Joey Flispart of Backseat Sandbar has posted some pretty great pictures of the Bloomington show here.  The Riverfront Times posted a review and some pictures here.

And, that's all, surprisingly enough.  If I've missed something important, please let me know, but other than some scant reviews, this appears to be all that I've missed in the past four days.

Review

What to say...?

Is there any way to describe the insurmountable feeling of seeing your favorite band in concert?  How do I describe an experience so emotional and wholly personal?  What is there to say about that breathtaking moment where you see Stephin Merritt walking, finger plugged in ear, from behind a curtain and going to perch himself on his little stool to play these songs that mean so incredibly much to me in my life for me?  How do I summarize?  I really can't muster up the strength or intelligence to do so in any sort of comprehensible manner.  I can say, though, that there were times during my experience with The Magnetic Fields at the Buskirk-Chumley Theater, The Pageant, and the Harris Theater where I was literally trying to stop smiling because my cheeks hurt so much, but I just downright couldn't.  And, goddamn it, that's special.

At this point, you've all seen the set lists, and know how stupendous they are.  The band is fluctuating between two sets and both of them do an absolutely superb job covering the band's career, though the obvious focus is on Realism.  And, goddamn, do those songs translate well live.  Mr. Merritt is known for his lack of vocal character, but I swear on "Better Things," these past four nights, he sounded downright emotive.  "Interlude" and "The Dolls' Tea Party" sound much more subdued in this bluegrass-y setup, but superb in their own right.  The harmonies on "You Must Be Out of Your Mind?"  Goddamn amazing.

Having only seen the band before on their Distortion tour, that is my only frame of reference.  And, on that tour, the synth-lines from the older songs were mostly replaced by Mr. Davol's cello work.  This year, though, they're touring with Ms. Gonson on electric keyboard, and I must admit this is a great improvement.  Its presence allowed the band to perform songs like "Long Vermont Roads" and "Falling in Love With the Wolfboy," which seem (to me, at least) pretty unperformable without their synthetic sounds.  It was a nice change of pace for the set lists to feature pre-69LS material so heavily.

Despite his reluctance to be so, Mr. Merritt is an amazing performer and seeing the band serves as a really brilliant emotional roller coaster.  Of course, the fact that I have such a supreme emotional connection to this music probably serves as some sort of bias, to which I readily admit, but anyone who could have sat through any of the four shows I saw without being touched or moved in some way is likely not an emotional creature.  Anyone familiar with his recorded work should already be familiar with the power of Mr. Merritt's voice has to make you connect with the emotion he's trying to convey, but live, it's just transcendent.  Trans-fucking-scendent.

And, Ms. Shirley Simms singing "Suddenly, There's a Tidal Wave?"  Yes, please.  Hell, I mentioned the harmonies on "You Must Be Out of Your Mind" before, and that's something upon which I could expound all day.  When Ms. Gonson, Ms. Simms, and Mr. Merritt sing together, magic occurs.  I am not exaggerating.

Of course, I wept and wept, and with good reason; those of you who have seen The Magnetic Fields know what kind of experience it is; for those of you who haven't had the pleasure, know that it's simultaneously joyous, heartbreaking, life-changing, and resplendent.  I've typed a small number of paragraphs and that is something that could never do the experience justice.  Just go.  Go.  Go.  Go.

I hope to have a post summarizing all the news I missed up before the end of the night.  We shall see.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Trip

Stephin Merritt will be appearing on a Chicagoan radio show on the 9th and 10th of this month.  I've yet to see whether or not this will be streamed online or at least preserved in some shape or form.  We shall see.

Variety posted this review of The Magnetic Fields' Los Angeles show, and reveals Mr. Merritt's newest band The Wasps, or something?  Yeah, congratulations on fantastic research.  Anyhow, cynicism aside, it's a decent review with a pretty neutral opinion on the show.  Here is a much more well-thought-out review, though, from Orange County Register.

Couple of new interviews as well.  This one from Milwaukee Express features an idea for an album full of untitled songs.  Interesting, to say the least.  And, then there is this one from Playback STL.

Tomorrow I leave for my trip to see The Magnetic Fields four times in four days!  I know how much you all care is the only reason I let this information be so known.  But, anyhoozle, I'll most certainly be updating with details of the shows and all their many wonders.  If picture opportunities present themselves, I will certainly snap away, but I won't be taking pictures during the show - I'll be far too busy weeping.  But, I do hope you'll excuse me if this blog is inactive for the few days I'll be gone.  I shall do my best, but all my downtime in hotels, I'm certain, shall be spent resting and freaking the geek out about how great my life is.  So, yeah...

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Herbst


The above picture was taken at The Magnetic Fields' show at the Herbst Theater, a full review of which can be found here.  

As mentioned a few days ago, Ms. Claudia Gonson got to sit in big Swedish thrones and chat with Yoshi Kato as a part of Noise Pop Festival.  A write-up of the full event is here; scroll down to get to the bit featuring our favorite manager/drummer/pianist/taco lover.

Here is this video of Mr. Merritt performing "The Nun's Litany"at this event.  I'd love to see more from this event, particularly the Q&A.

Mr. Merritt is interviewed by the Riverfront Times here, and I am a firm believer that that first question could be asked of him about all of his songs and the answer would be consistently engaging.  The LAist interviews him here, which makes me wish I could be at one of those shows where Mr. Merritt sang the wrong lyrics to a song...  And, lastly, there's this interview with the Chicago Free Press, which appears to be nothing more than a slightly extended version of the Wisconsin Gazette interview I posted the other day.  But, whatevz.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Drawing

The drawing to the left is by Ms. Alice Rutherford, and is lovely.

There are a few more reviews of Strange Powers: Stephin Merritt and The Magnetic Fields, and thus far they all remain wholly positive.  Spinning Platters does a good job summarizing the experience of the film while still keep a professionally vague distance, which is nice (thanks much to Gordon for providing me with the link to this one).  SF Appeal provides some pretty wry zingers from Mr. Merritt's afterword Q&A session with the audience.

Mr. Merritt is interviewed by NUVO here, and by the Louisville, KY paper Courier Journal right the fuck here (pardon my excitement on that last bit, I am a Kentucky boy, after all).  By far today's best interview, though, and the source of the Rutherford drawing, is this interview with L.A. Record.  I love when Mr. Merritt talks about art; it makes me nostalgic for his days as a critic...

Monday, March 1, 2010

Bore


There were tons of reviews of The Magnetic Fields' show in Oakland, but apparently, no photo passes were handed out, which is quite frustrating as I wanted to see the band in action with Mr. Daniel Handler and Mr. Johnny Blood.  Anyhow, Plank Magazine, Spinning Platters, and A+E all loved the show, to no surprise.

The sneak preview of Strange Powers: Stephin Merritt and The Magnetic Fields was last night as well, and there is a review up at this blog.  The review is not the most detailed in the world, but it functions nice as the probably the largest chunk of information on the film available thus far.  Also, I stole the picture above from said blog.  If you were there, it'd be lovely of you to just leave a little review in the comments section.  <3

Not to mention this interview with Mr. Merritt from the Wisconsin Gazette.  In it, Mr. Merritt reveals the inspiration behind the title of the No-Synth Trilogy, recounts his Tom Lehrer story, and reveals his lack of drive to write a book.  Good times.