Swirling Disco Balls and Midwestern Teenage Foodies
Mad’s Music Mix:
Bendy synths and bouncy keys play a backdrop for that tricky conversation we all have in relationships: “So are you seeing anyone else?” Clarke goes for the cheeky breakdown and says he’s all about the free love — acknowledging that this might be a point of contention. Tink’s verse provides a great counterpoint as another play on the “love as flowers in a garden” metaphor.
My favorite Aussie band is back at it with Currents, a great space-dance album. The crew really gets into the groove on this track. Something about the bassline makes my shoulders convulse into an untame-able outburst. Meet me under the swirling disco ball.
Speaking of Australia, here I proffer an exuberant Australian group who I happened to see perform behind a record store on a whim. (Everyone should go to Rough Trade in Brooklyn for cheap/fun shows!) I thought at first it would be some sort of gothic and emo band but boy was I completely wrong. Their priority is for you to have a good time and shake a leg or two. Seamlessly mixing ‘80s pop, house and ‘70s rock, their melodies transport you to boogie wonderland. They are an electrifying live band. The lead singer leapt atop amps and drums, and even climbed along the upper balcony like a free-spirited Spiderman. So moral of the story: They are not some horror punk/black metal/death rock/emo/insert scary sounding rock subgenre; rather, they are some Aussie lads who like people to dance.
The talk of hip-hop town is the beef going on between Drake and Meek Mill: Meek accused Drake of not writing his own lyrics. Possible reasons for the diss include: Revenge for Drake not helping Meek promote their collaboration on Meek’s latest album, Dreams Worth More Than Money, and Meek’s special relationship with Drake’s crush, Nicki Minaj. The reason most people know about Meek Mill now is because he Burn Book-ed Drake, but actually this is a great album. The first track is this operatic opus. Funnily enough, the first verse gives a nod to Drake with the line “But how can I lose when I came from the bottom?” The ensuing mud slinging from Drake and Meek has offered listeners even more fire (Drake has soundly taken the lead as of this writing). It’s pretty cool to see rappers pushing one another to be better, but the complexities and consequences of beef in hip hop might have to wait for another ~notes~ edition.
Jeff’s Journo Jems
How “Who Let the Dogs Out” Forever Changed Music’s Place in Sports [Sports Illustrated]
My hometown mascot is the bulldog. So it seemed almost predestined when “Who Let The Dogs Out” became the song of the summer in 2000, my brother’s Pop Warner team used the pop anthem as a rallying cry. I can remember sitting in the stands as two dozen third graders barked along in unison — that’s one way to intimidate your opponents. But I never realized that we have professional sports teams to thank for the popularization of the Baha Men’s one-hit wonder. Sports Illustrated takes a look at its meteoric rise 15 years later and checks in to see what the band members are doing today.
The Web We Have to Save [Medium]
The way we use the Web is constantly evolving, but each change is so minute, it’s hard to notice — unless you’re a blogger who spent the last seven years in an Iranian prison. Then the changes seem otherworldly. This story reads like an anthropology of the Internet and had me thinking about the power of hyperlinks and how social media (which was in its infancy when the story’s author was first jailed) has made us more homogenized than ever before.
I Was a Midwestern Teenage Foodie [BuzzFeed]
The culinary spotlight has only recently been focused on the Midwest. Before James Beard Award winners opened outposts in Chicago’s west loop and downtown Cleveland, Midwestern food seemed — at least to outsiders — to be an endless supply of American cuisine, Jell-O salad and all. That’s why I loved this story so much. In the late 1980s (a time before Yelp and gastropubs), one teenager takes his tastebuds on a trip around the world in the most unlikely of places: Minneapolis.
Up in the Air: Meet the Man Who Flies Around the World For Free [Rolling Stone]
Let’s just say I don’t have the best relationship with frequent flyer miles. Anytime I rack up a respectable number, the airline inevitably changes its rules to make it that much harder for me to qualify for a free flight. Couple that with my love for quirky stories and it’s no surprise why this profile stood out to me: A 20-something with a lifelong love of flying has managed to work the system and jet set around the world for the past year without spending a penny.
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