Friday, May 29, 2009


Fun Fact: Albert Einstein won the Nobel Prize for his work on quantum mechanics and the photoelectric effect, NOT for his theory of relativity.

I still don't understand relativity. But I've studied a lot of quantum physics. If someone asked me to define quantum physics, I'd say "very, very small things behave in REALLY WEIRD WAYS."

Einstein helped realize that light is comprised of tiny, massless, particles called photons. This video does a pretty good job explaining the particle-wave duality of electrons (and photons) and the uncertainty principle, some of basic principes of quantum theory.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

The Books. (The band.)

I might love The Books more than actual books.

They're two guys from NYC/Massachusetts, one plays the cello and the other guitar and bass, heavily embellished by quirky sampling, sound effects, and spoken word. It's stripped down and eccentric and at times plain weird. But also haunting. They get under my skin the same ways Jose Gonzalez and Nina Nastasia do.

Wikipedia describes The Books as a mix of acoustic, folk, electronic and aleatoric.
Aleatoric music (from the Latin word alea, meaning "dice") is music in which some element of the composition is left to chance, and/or some primary element of a composed work's realization is left to the determination of its performer. The term is most often associated with procedures in which the chance element involves a relatively limited number of possibilities. --Wiki

"Smells Like Content" from Lost and Safe
(watch it in full size, it's amazing!)

"Twelve Fold Chain" (live) from Lost and Safe

"Take Time"
from The Lemon of Pink

I love and recommend 2005's "Lost and Safe" and 2003's "The Lemon of Pink," both on TomLab Records. They self-released an EP in 2006 and a DVD of videos in 2007. I'm looking forward to a new album from them soon. *fingers crossed*

Monday, May 25, 2009

Every DJ wants to date a musician

I kind of have a crush on Shugo Tokumaru.

I imagine he has a rad Tokyo apartment filled with colored LED lights and toy robots, and that we'd fit in each others clothes.

I discovered him last week at one of my LJ communities, Indie Exchange. I'm really digging what I've heard so far. I'd describe it as quirky indie folk electronica. Like Psapp and Devendra Banhart had a baby and he was Japanese and beautiful.

Shugo Tokumaru - Rum Hee - off his new EP, Rum Hee

I also like:
Clocca - from his 2007/2008 album "Exit"
Green Rain - from his 2007/2008 album "Exit"

He has a new album coming out this year, keep your eyes out.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

The Stranglers

The Stranglers weren't exactly punk. In a pinch, I would call them post-punk, but that's not entirely accurate since they were around the same time punk got started in mid/late 1970s. Some might call them proto-punk or pre-punk since their sound closely resembled punk and punk predecessors like The Doors, The Velvet Underground and Iggy Pop. Did they inspire punk or were they inspired by punk? Does it matter? The Stranglers somehow in the middle of of it all. Not before, not after. Perhaps the best word for that is punk-adjacent.

"Nice and Sleazy" performed on Top of the Pops in 1978.

Dear Universe, I've decided that because the lead guitarist/vocalist of The Stranglers is hot, it is yet another affirmation that my future husband is British. Your friend, Kate

See also:
Get A Grip On Yourself (1977)
Peaches (live, 1978)
Golden Brown (1981)
Strange Little Girl (written in 1974, released in 1982)

Saturday, May 16, 2009


One of my post-breakup, post-30th-birthday commitments to myself is to be more stylish, so I started reading street-fashion blogs and am getting really inspired. See:, Facehunter, Style Scout. I also discovered Polyvore, which is an online app that lets you put outfits together using images of clothes from online stores. For my first project, I'm creating outfits inspired album covers.

Goldfrapp's "Black Cherry"
Black Cherry
via Polyvore

Camera Obscura's "Underachievers Please Try Harder"
underachievers please try harder
via Polyvore

Definitely in right now: giant nerd glasses, black tights, hippie dresses with high waists, mixing genres i.e. hippie + punk.

Friday, May 15, 2009

What the kids are listening to these days

This stuff's pretty brand spankin, from the new releases shelf of KCSB.

Now, Now Every Children
Boy/girl band from Minneapolis. So cute!

"Friends With My Sister" from Cars

Indie electro from Portland! I love these guys, ironic nerd glasses and all. They do rad cover of Cyndi Lauper's "Girls Just Want To Have Fun" on their latest album. I had trouble finding videos of theirs because there's another band of the same name, a female pop-punk band from Belgium.

"Medicine" from Jupiter

Kaki King
She's a pretty prolific guitar player. Her first two albums were instrumental & acoustic, but lately she's playing other instruments as well as singing. This is off her newest album. It's a hit! I can smell it!

"Pull Me Out Alive" from Dreaming of Revenge

here's a "making of" the video

Mika Miko
Girl group from LA! Totally rock! Gotta love the onesies!

"Wild Boar" from We Be Xuxa

Monday, May 4, 2009

Being Scandanavian helps.

I kind of want to BE Annie. Adorable Norwegian electropop artist with indie cred? Yes, please.

"Bubble Gum" from 2004's Anniemal.
Yeah the lyrics are pretty little ridiculous. If I can't be her, I want to be her backup dancer.

"I Know Ur Girlfriend Hates Me" from 2009's Don't Stop.
The official video is way better. Sorry, I can't embed it.