Awkward Press

Independent publishers of imaginative fiction and daily meditations on the ridiculousness of the universe.
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Put It Down

May 07, 2010 By: Category: Videos

My wife is out of town, so I took the opportunity to record a $exxxy video. Here it is, with longwinded comments about topics that are only of interest to computer geeks following.

It’s embarrassing how many times I’ve rerecorded this thing, and I’m still pretty unhappy with it. I can do that Mariah part much better and I did in earlier versions, but the rest of the song wasn’t quite as good in the earlier versions, so I said “fuck it, kill your darlings.” And the audio sounds terrible because I had to record it with the internal mic on my new Mac, because guess what? You can’t just plug a microphone into a Mac and record with it. You have to buy some interface thingy that interfaces the plug with the plug. Which actually, we already have an interface thingy … my wife has this M-Audio firewire box that has inputs for guitars and microphones and so you plug those things into the M-Audio and then you plug the M-Audio into your Mac and voila! Now you can record your guitar in Garage Band! Only you can’t, because I just got a brand-spanking new MacBook Pro (’cause I’m a professional, natch), and apparently there’s a new kind of firewire plug and this old M-Audio thing has the old kind of firewire plug which means I can’t plug the plug into the plug without getting an adapter to interface the plug with the plug. But and also how are you going to make Garage Band your like flagship program and then make it super intensely difficult for someone to do anything with that program unless they spend a bunch of money to buy the right plugs? Apple: boooooo. (more…)

The 15 Best Albums of 2009 that You Probably Will Not Like

December 11, 2009 By: Category: Best of 2009, Greatest Hits, Lists, Music

2009-header

If you had asked me to list my favorite albums of the year in, say, October, I would have told you that this was one of the best years for music in ages and I could hardly choose between all my favorites. If you had asked me to list my favorite albums of the year this week, (which you did, as you’ll recall–I think we were at Arby’s), I would tell you that nothing really stood out. Albums that I thought were masterpieces upon first listen (The Decemberists’ The Hazards of Love, Kid Cudi’s Man on the Moon: The End of the Day) quickly reached their saturation points. Artists I love released albums that barely warranted a second spin (Tegan and Sara’s Sainthood, The Hidden Cameras’ Origin: Orphan).

My appreciation for this year’s releases has been slightly dulled by the sheer number of new records I picked up this year. According to iTunes, I currently own 69 records that were released in 2009. That is over 2 days worth of music. I could listen to my 2009 releases from start to finish for 48 hours straight and not hear every song on every album. It is just too easy in this age of digital downloads to go overboard and pick up everything that’s garnering a slight amount of buzz. Also, I have a serious problem. It’s this or Home Shopping Network, and I don’t really have anyplace to keep hundreds of souvenir plates.

All that being said, I still maintain that in terms of quality releases, this year saw a greater percentage than many. We’ll have to wait and see whether I’ll still be listening to any of these records next year, but for the time being, here it is. As you read this list, please keep in mind that I would never give this list to anyone and say, “buy these records.” I can’t tell you how many of my friends I tried to turn on to Los Campesinos!, my favorite record of the last five years, who think it is garbage. I don’t think I have the most eclectic taste in the world, but I do like to give everything a fair shake, and this sometimes leads to me liking music that my hip friends find too mainstream and my mainstream friends find too hip. (Note: I do not have any mainstream friends.) In other words, stuff that no one likes. Enjoy! (more…)