Wednesday, January 12, 2011

New Stuff 2011 - Pt. 2

I type this with my wizened 18 year old cat wedged in next to me on the recliner. I am 24 hours into my recovery from some minor surgery (a turbinectomy - but please don't bother to Google it as the first article that comes up makes it sound like some awful procedure that no one does anymore). I actually feel OK - not a lot of pain, just a terrible amount of congestion exacerbated by an inability to blow my nose.
But enough of that.
My friends at 215 Magazine have set me up with some DVDs, reviews of which you'll see here and on their website shortly.  In the meantime I have been catching up on my X-Mas reading:

 I read the first part of Guralnick's Elvis bio when it was published in 1995.  Don't know why it took me so long to get to part two (first published in 1999, it covers Elvis' life from when he entered the army until the end).  Just as detailed and meticulously researched, it feels unfair to criticize the book for lacking the passion and joy of part one for there were only fleeting moments of that joy at the end of Elvis' life.  Instead we get a weary litany of pills, shitty movies, young girls (most of their time spent as a cross between nurse and surrogate mama), and diminishing musical returns.  You can't help but think how things might have turned out.  He was surrounded by two types of people: those who loved and cared for him but weren't smart enough to see how troubled he was, or by people bright enough to do something to help but who ultimately cared about little more than their meal ticket.  A true American tragedy

 A slight, but fun and informative book on the creation of what is arguably the funniest film of all time.  I'm hard pressed to think of one better.  Blount is better served by his research than his own attempts to inject jocularity.  We're talking about some of the funniest folks to ever walk the planet.  Best to stay out of their way.
 Fantastically readable with tons of material I had never encountered before (and I've read damn near everything on the Stones, especially that remarkable time between 1968 and 1972).  Provides further documentation that just about all my idols are assholes, but hey nothing says that I need to able to sit at a bar and chat with you in order to appreciate your genius.
Further proof that I would rather read about than listen to 90% of hardcore music.  Tesco and Dave write with a passion and wit that frequently outshines their subject matter.  Gotta love all the old ads too.  Time to send in my $2.49 for that new Misfits single!

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