Thursday, March 28, 2013

March Roundup: Standing on the Poop Deck

Our Spring Break Disney Cruise was the first time I had ever traveled in public with the Little One, and I found out quite quickly that inconveniences like customs checks and lines for boarding passes are pure torture to a toddler. After spending the entire day driving down and navigating these obstacles, we were both about to fall apart as we stepped out on deck to be counted present for the escape plan orientation. The crew was very diligent about passenger participation, and we were given the impression that this was the only time we really needed to be serious. Every man, woman and child was ordered to find their places on the deck and listen carefully to the instructions.

None of us really wanted to be there. To make matters worse, I noticed that the Little One's diaper had become a little squishy.  I hoped that she could hold on for fifteen more minutes. The prognosis seemed good - despite the somewhat grueling morning, she was in a pretty good mood. In fact, she was being quite charming and garnered a bit of attention from the people around us. This situation changed dramatically, however, after she reached into her diaper to figure out what was bothering her and, finding it, proceeded to smear it across my chest to get it off of her hands.

This was a new one. We had been under strict instructions to stand and pay attention, though, so there we were, standing on the poop deck, with little more than a couple of wet wipes to clean up a mess that warranted a full bath for both of us. There was no getting out of the drill, which made the rest of it pretty intolerable.  We powered through it, though, stink and all. As soon as we were released, we both had a good scrub down and adjusted to the fantasy offered by the Disney cruise.

On my listening, I’ve been in a bit of stasis this last month because I have a really great run of albums going in the changer (this happens sometimes). The playlist is a bit short because not too much has shifted out.

march2013 by Jeff Hodges on GroovesharkPuffy AmiYumi - Nice: It would stand to reason that Andy Sturmer's talent at reinterpreting classic power pop sounds would be a valuable commodity in j-pop circles. As musical director on Nice, he supports Puffy Ami Yumi's characteristic cutismo with strong compositions and incredible drumming.

The Dirty Projectors - Swing Lo Magellan: The eccentric and distinctive approach to pop songwriting that pervades Swing Lo Magellan is gloriously free of any autotuning or significant computer manipulation. It is, quite clearly, the refreshing voice of hardworking, gifted musicians with a clearly left-of-center musical vision.

The Format - Interventions and Lullabies: I feel as if I just can't get enough of this album. It could come to be a power pop classic in my collection.

My Bloody Valentine - mbv: My first impression of this album was somewhat apathetic. After I received my hardcopy in the mail, however, and heard the intended running order of the album, it was like a whole new experience.

Steven Wilson - The Raven That Refused to Sing: A lot of current progressive music endeavors to recapture the past with simple mimicry. On this most recent release, Wilson reinterprets prog's past through the very relevant voices of 21st century prog illuminati.

Flying Colors: This recent one-off album by a supergroup of the same name presents itself as a bit of the same-old-same-old if you are a fan of Neal Morse's other collaborations. Still, the songs present rarely addressed topics that are appealing to grownups and shroud them in compelling musical settings.

Änglagård - Viljans Öga: I gave this top twenty album from last year a spin again this month. Looking forward to more from the group in the near future.

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