resign yourself to eventual greatness

If Crystal Antlers were a business meeting, they would be a terrible business meeting.  They would invite all sorts of people who don’t even work at the company, people who might not work anywhere, people who seems to be salivating uncontrollably over the stale donut holes a chairslength out of reach on the glass table, people entirely willing to jump up and down on that glass table until broken plates of glass interrupt the callouses of their feet if it meant getting to those donuts.  Crystal Antlers would ask about the presentation you were supposed to give and then they would pull live rats out of their mouths, rats with scorched, coiled tails, still dripping with the most caustic kind of amneo-gastric fluids.   If you were ever wondering what it takes to make an organ sound like an organ in the other sense, here you go.

Crystal Antlers released Tentacles in 2008 and stuck a nail-gun straight into the thin-skinned, sensitive part of their adam’s apple.  This year, they released Two-Way Mirror, and while it seems they may have pulled the thing down from their neck, they’re still gripping it so hard that the sweat has almost made it down to their waist.

Dust” and “Time Erased”  are from Crystal Antlers’ album Tentacles.

Jules’ Story” and “Two Way Mirror” are from Crystal Antlers’ album Two-Way Mirror.

Also Wild Flag make really, really good.  God, I’m excited about how excited I am about this album. (thanks, Alice)

EDIT-  independent of this blog, just got the following e-mail from my father-

Wild Flag

Good new music from members of Sleater-Kinney, Helium, Quasi, The Minders, Stephen Malkmus and the Jicks–on Merge (that is to say loud  but literate) label. A bit of B-52s.  Oh that Carrie B.

Up in the country listening to this instead of prepping classes. Think I’d better get back to work”

So there you go.  Wild Flag-  Cool dad approved.

And Also Also, Canada is great.   But, even for Canada, this is great.  The country commissioned some of its best musicians and filmmakers to each visit a National Park and create art inspired by the space.  In addition to drawing from bands I love (The Weakerthans, The Constantines, Broken Social Scene, Godspeed!, The Deadly Snakes, Christine Fellows and Kathleen Edwards, among many, many others), they made a real effort to present a diverse group of artists.  This is important.

There is a stigma, some of it earned, that visiting the outdoors and engaging with our physical planet in general is a white, upper-class thing to do.  The logic for why environmental efforts rarely take off in low-income communities is that when you’ve got more important things to worry about, whether you’re recycling, composting, buying from a farmer’s market or using energy efficient bulbs doesn’t matter.  Fair enough.  Nature has the perception of being a luxury.  As unfortunate as I think this is, it is a reality of western culture.

I don’t think having rappers or Inuit throat singers or semi-mainstream country singers make art about Canada’s natural beauty will necessarily change this stigma.  Still, I respect the organizers of the project for not just springing for a bunch of indie bands that bloggers would care about (although, to be fair, the deck is stacked in their favor), and instead going for a more diverse group of artists. It’s a beautiful project.  Just our luck, you can only buy the individual EPs on iTunes Canada, but you can buy a sampler in the states or listen to any of the recording on the site.

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