Friday, January 30, 2009

The Boys Consider the U.S. Postal Service, the Effects of Boys' Names Upon Violent Crime Rates, and Hipster Song Titles

The U.S. Postal Service shocked the nation this week with suggestions that mail delivery might be shortened to five days a week due to the recession. What day is the likely victim? Look out Tuesdays!

Richard: "In our world of high-speed communication, the truth is that daily snail mail is an antiquated, largely unecessary system that we keep around primarily for nostalgia and comfort: people love the fact that 'not rain, nor sleet, nor snow' can stop the mail. Hell, we could easily cut it down to a three day delivery week and the only people affected in major ways would be bored housewives waiting for coupons, lonely women corresponding with inmates, and a few angry Unabomber types."

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A new study this week in Social Science Quarterly claims that boys with unusual names or more likely to turn to a life of crime in their youth.

Chip: "Well, no shit. When I was a lad my schoolmates called me 'Chippi Longstocking' and "fish n' chips' until I got so pissed I threw a rock through the schoolhouse window."

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If you've been hearing a bit of extra hipster buzz on the streets of Larryville, it's probably because Los Campesinos! (yes, the exclamation point is part of the name) are hitting town next week for a major show at the Bottleneck. Sure, all of us local self-respecting hipsters abandoned the 'Neck for the 'Pot (Jackpot) many years ago, but an occasional show such as this will lure us to fork over the high-ticket prices (ten bucks) to a see a band whose new album has been described by Pitchfork as "a messy, glorious, and cohesive artistic document of internet café-era indie life that sounds best when sung by heart."

Chip: "Las Campesinos' sounds Spanish to me, but I understand they are Welsh. I assume their name is ironic?"

While the song titles of the Campesinos! generally do not lean toward the overly long, esoteric titles of their hipster counterparts, one can still gain a sense of their 'cleverness' from a title such as "The End of the Asterisk" and their hipster-sensitivity from a title like "Heart Swells/Pacific Daylight Time," which Pitchfork calls "a lovelorn miniature epic, with gusting guitars and Parenthetical Girls-quoting lo-fi vocals which shift midway through to folky strums and scratchy, indecipherable mumbling. If you mistakenly dismissed the band as another set of childish twee-poppers, our special today is crow."

But let us take a look today at some other hipster song titles (and we invite our readers to submit faux-titles of their own in the comment section).

"Dirty Dustin Hoffman Needs a Bath" --Of Montreal

"Upon Viewing Brueghel's 'Landscape With the Fall of Icarus' "--Titus Andronicus (they are opening for Los Campesinos! !)

"The Vivian Girls Are Visited in the Night by Saint Dargarius and His Squadron of Benevolent Butterflies" --Sufjan Stevens

"The Wizard Turns On... The Giant Silver Flashlight and Puts on His Werewolf Moccasins" --Flaming Lips

"Grim And Frostbitten Moongoats Of The North" --Impaled Northern Moonforest ("acoustic black metal" /to our friend King Tosser, you will want to look this up on Wikipedia and YouTube!).

2 comments:

cl.thier said...

I've figured it out! Pitchfork combs the dictionary for strange, "literate" sounding words, then runs to the thesaurus to find other big words like it. But what confuses is me is their penchant for contradictions...

So Los Campesinos!' (tricky punctuation that!) new album is both "messy" and "cohesive" while "Heart Swells/Pacific Daylight Time" is a "miniature epic". I'm sure if pressed, some wannabe English major at the 'Fork would cite Keats and Negative Capability! I cite BULLSHIT.

And it's interesting you brought up The Decemberists, as I'm working up a cover of their "Los Angeles, I'm Yours" for a future show!

a hipster said...

Haha...your shows are getting hipper by the minute! Toss in some Bon Iver and some of the TapRoom kids might even attend!