Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Walk this Way

What a party...

This is an post I had written around the middle of last week. Kevin hit me until I bled and then left savage, disgusting messages on my mom's answering machine until I added this post. I supposed I deserved it. Enjoy:

Perhaps there is a sense of unity that fast approaches as soon as those balloons drop. Maybe not. Rallies, for years, have always united the many behind what the few seem to believe. The Democratic National Convention is the same. Tonight, by some sort of grace I've neither earned nor expected, I hope to attend tonight's convention in the Pepsi Center here in Denver.

For those few of you stateside who care to peruse our blog, you may me unaware: we have a almost ludicrous following in southern Indonesia, are stars of a underground animated television show in Tehran and we've even been banned on Red China's interweb-superhighway. Kevin, of course, secured the Iranian and island bloc on his trip to Europe this summer (Christ knows how). I am responsible for the Asian censors.

That being said, I feel obligated to explain to those unfamiliar with American culture just exactly why the fuck anyone should care about these conventions; the good Sen. Obama, after all, as the nomination "all sewn up" already. The honest and frank answer is that identifying any sort of "American Culture" is about as possible as driving with your parking break on or enjoying the movie Mask, staring Cher. This perhaps will be taken up in another post however. For the moment, consider Americans like schools of fish: we like shiny things and free meals, no matter how much we really pay for it.

First formed during the French Revolution, the National Convention was a coming together of concerned parties in order to address common grievances, success, baguettes, what have you. Today the DNC must take place in order for a bunch of people who represent states you'd never EVER care to visit--Kansas, Mississippi, Oklahoma, Guam, for example--come to voice to the world that which we already fucking know. "We Choose Barack Obama," they will gleefully cry! Bully for them. We already knew that. Now give me back that 100 million we spent on all these fucking balloons.

Volunteers and delegates have clamored around my city for 2 days now feeling entitled, like some sick-batch of prom moms, feeling they deserve to take part in Democracy. To take part in a choice that was made months ago. All the while we have thrown money towards a festival of tom-fuckery that really accomplishes nothing.

If Obama is elected, here is the first "CHANGE" that will happen: Obama will be fucking recognized by my damn spell check.

Goverment = culture.

Out of the Silent Planet We Are

Sunday, August 24, 2008

I Want Old School Headphones and a Bushy Hair Cut like a Young Dan Rather

This circus is in town. The DNC starts tomorrow, but the protesters already began to congregate today downtown. A clusterfuck of hardline right wingers, mennonites, and anarchist took to the streets today. I reported on it for KGNU. I dig the atmosphere these kinds of events create, but I can't stand these anarchist kids. They stand for nothing, do not know how to interact with the press (even the good guys like me), and their arrogance undermines the positive things other groups are doing. Analyst were worried how Obama was going to get Clinton supporters on his side I don't know how he will manage to gain the support of these anarchists who dress like old timey train robbers, then again they probably don't vote anyway. However, I still have to respect their brazen disregard for authority and taking change and action into their own hands. I'll be spending the next week engulfed in this shit show inside and outside the convention for KGNU and KRCX. If I find sometime I'll up load some of my stories.
Highlight from the first day, almost literally running into Ted Turner. His smile is child like and even more unsettling in person.

Saturday, August 23, 2008


Just seeing if this thing works as it ought to; I don't often care to consort with the robot race. I will post more quite soon. Until then, consider me cryptic.

-HBM Out
He jumped from 30,000 feet. Forgot to pull the chord.

Friday, August 22, 2008

Like Rick and Louie

All three of my occasional readers, please welcome the newest (and only other writer besides me) contributor to The Arcane, Blaine Miller.
He is originally from the south, wears bow ties, and looks something like the photo above.

Monday, August 18, 2008

Amos Lee at the Gothic Theater

Television producers love Amos Lee. Since his self-titled debut album in 2005, Amos Lee songs have been featured on nearly a dozen primetime dramas. His voice usually accompanies a montage near the end of an episode, when the doctor/boss/protagonist is sitting alone in the dark after making a major mistake. In the past, an artist who had such a specific niche would go unnoticed or be forgotten. However, thanks to the interweb and iTunes, Amos Lee’s career has benefitted from his knack of creating soundtrack-fitting songs. This was painfully apparent Saturday night at his show at the Gothic Theatre.

The venue was jam-packed with every demographic primetime television is shooting for. Sitting along the back row was the over-40 crowd. Men in Tommy Bahama shirts and the desperate housewives of Douglas County drank light beer. On the floor, 30-something guys with blue-and-white striped dress shirts with jeans and thin-framed glass discussed how much they love the Garden State soundtrack. Birkenstock wearing pseudo-hipsters with patchy beards were rubbing elbows with teenage couples. In the middle of this scene were pockets of early 20-something nursing majors drinking Coronas and complaining about tall people standing in front of them. The crowd could have easily been expecting to see an advanced screening of this season “Grey’s Anatomy” premiere.

Instead, opener Pricilla Ann took the stage first, and all the chatter about Garden State and exams abruptly ended. With only half an hour, Pricilla Ann managed to steal the crowd’s hearts with her quirky, girl-next-door demeanor (at one point telling the crowd she was drunk because of the altitude after drinking wine out of a Starbucks cup). Her angelic voice held the audience’s attention despite only being accompanied by her guitar. When her set ended, all the guys in the crowd probably wanted to get her number, while the women became anxious for Amos Lee.

After about a 45-minute break and a request that no photos or video be taken, Amos Lee and his band took the stage and immediately went into “Keep It Loose, Keep It Tight.” This subdued and soulful song was greeted by howls of delight from the crowd. Without missing a beat, the band changed tempo and went into “Supply and Demand,” an upbeat and polished song off his second record of the same name that had the 20-somethings screaming, “I love you Amos.”

Amos Lee’s set spanned 20 songs and what seemed like half as many genres. “Bottom of the Barrel” played like an upbeat Southern church hymn. “What’s Been Going” had an acoustic melancholy that might land it in the next Cameron Crowe film. And “Won’t Let Me Go” sounded like Amos’ love letter to ’70s soul. In the middle of this journey through influences, Amos went into crowd favorite “Sweet Pea,” but instead of a simple ukulele pop tune, the band played a bigger and fuller version that had the whole audience singing along.

It wasn’t just the songs that showcased Lee’s influences, though. His stage performance featured Buddy Guy’s plucking, Waylon Jennings’ gunman grip and posture, Justin Timberlake’s shoulder shrugs, head bob and hand gestures during breakdowns – which were originally Michael Jackson’s. Amos would close his eyes whenever a big note came belting out. It was clear that he had been groomed for the stage.

By the time he finished his set, the crowd started making their way to the exits. They were either gassed by the passion of the set or were unaware that encores are an inevitability. Nevertheless, Amos came back out for a five-song encore that began with “Soul Suckers” and ended with a crowd-favorite of a cover, Queen’s “Fat Bottom Girls.”

After nearly two hours of music that sweat folk, soul, blues and gospel, everyone in the crowd was left exhausted. Amos Lee’s passion permeates off the stage, but it doesn’t feel put on. His genuine love of music and performance is contagious, and it leaves people feeling the same way he probably felt when writing each song; happy, lonely and depressed – which is probably why television producers continually use his songs to capture the right moment at the end of the episode.

Like Kotter

After a summer sabbatical abroad The Arcane is back and hopefully better then ever. I have recently taken up a position as a contributor to The Reverb. Check them out. It is a great local Denver webzine. All of my reviews on there can also be found here. In addition to live music reviews I will be getting back in to record reviews. I am extremely far behind on new music, but I am trying to get caught up. Lastly, there is talk of bring on an incredibly gifted and zany individual to do weekly posts on whatever he feels. Check back soon for a new Arcane that'll make you say, "Oh my god, Mr. Kotta!"