Monday, August 20, 2007

All Blogs Go to Heaven

This Blog is Dead, Long Live the Blog.

It's been a good run...85 posts over the last year...but i never really expected her to last, in this form, as long as she did. This was the pupae, now we're moving into the chrysalis stage (thank you Freshman Earth Science!).

I've finally built the site i wanted a year ago and if you've stuck around this long, please move over to my new site, There, you will find my new site, with information on my clothing line, KWblack, and you will find my new blog, The Conglomerate: The Collective Thoughts of Adam Mack Wright. (Presumptious? You betcha!)

Please update your RSS readers, Favorites and most importantly, the links on your own blogs...this should clean things up nicely for you.

See you at the new spot.

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Borderline Beautiful

A. I love Mandy Moore. I'm not even going to apologize for it. She passed Jeniffer Aniston on my list of "Celebrities Who I Think Would Be the Most Fun to Hang Out with in Real Life" a long time ago. I know CP will share the sentiment, but ever since I watched "A Walk To Remember" I've been pretty damn infatuated.

B. I hate this song. It's just silly. It's infectious and i find myself not hating it when i hear it at the bars but i remind myself that i hate it and all remains right with the world again.

C. My love for Mandy cancels out my hate for this track. It's almost friggin awesome. Enjoy

Monday, August 13, 2007

Monday Morning Shuffle

Sorry for the absence last week, there's not a ton of internet access up here:

However, i did take my iPod and although i tried to spend most of my time listening to the sounds of nature, i did fall asleep each night to The Shins and The Decemberists. They were instrumental in drowning out the waterfall that we camped next to (i don't care what they put on those relaxation CDs, listening to pounding water for 8 hours sucks.) and also my father's snoring. Good times!

On with the shuffle:

1. Chop 'Em Down - Matisyahu, off of Shake Off the Dust...Arise
Maybe it's my Hebrew roots, maybe it's the fact that a Hesidic Jew in full garb is singing reggae, rapping and beat boxing, or maybe it's just because i like good music, but Matisyahu is terrific.
I mean after a weekend of watching Making the Band 4 with my sister, do you realize how rare it is for a musician like this to be noticed and become even the slightest bit mainstream? Just read his Wikipedia entry...this guy has been everywhere, done everything and somehow has become a famous musician while interjecting Old Testament ideas and thoughts into his lyrics...tell me what the odds of that are in today's musical climate??

2. Jambi - Tool, off of 10,000 Days
This is a song to get you jacked up on a Monday Morning. If i was driving (and i guess everyone on the 101 should be glad that i'm not...) i would be drumming on my steering wheel and full on rocking out to this song while stuck in traffic. This is a perfect Monday Morning Shuffle song.
I especially like the voice-box guitar solo towards the end of the song...very Frampton.

3. Eat The Rich - Aerosmith, off of Get a Grip
I believe this is Aerosmith's first turn on the Shuffle...strange how long that took...
So this is one of those teenage-angst anthems i loved in Middle School because of the swear words and that fact that my mom absolutely hated the album cover (the pierced cow udder anyone?) I used to rock out to this song, knew the lyrics by heart and would pump my fist during the ubiquitous "take that Grey Poupon my friend and shove it up your ass!" climax of the song.
Then one day, i looked around at my surroundings and realized, "hey, i'm not living such an under-privileged life here..." and then that lead into my thinking, "Hey, Steven Tyler's probably got some money lying around too...why the hell is he singing about rich people when he's loaded?" And the whole thing just got really hypocritical real fast.
And although i think he was talking about the blueblood, Lifestyles of The Rich And Famous type people and not just people who had a few bucks and although i still love the song and the sentiment, it just got a little weird for me to consider it my anthem.

4. Gone for Good - The Shins, off of Chutes Too Narrow
Of course the shuffle would play a song from a band i've already mentioned once...
Anyway, the thing i'm really starting to like about The Shins is the breadth of their influences. This song is straight country, steel guitar and everything and it's the only song i've heard on 3 different albums that comes even close to sounding like this. You have to have a certain level of respect for a band that will sound completely different from song to song. I know they're not the first ones to do it, but just like Matisyahu, it takes some balls to go that far from the norm. I'm just saying...

5. How I Could Just Kill A Man - Rage Against the Machine, off of Renegades
And now for something completely different... I love when the shuffle does this to me.
This CD was a cop-out full of cover songs but i have to admit that it really did expose me to some music that i never would have listened to otherwise. Rage could have gone with rap covers and some metal/punk stuff but they really dug deep for some of these songs. Some of the bands they covered on this album: Afrika Bambaataa and the Soul-Sonic Force, EPDM, E-40, Bruce Springsteen and Devo...that's right, Devo..the same guys who wore the red pyramid hats and sang Whip It.
This is actually the live version of this song with Zach on stage with B-Real and Sen Dog from the original and mighty Cypress Hill. And before you get all caught up in the fact that i had to stop listening to Eat the Rich because the song was kinda, sorta about me but i can still nod my head to a song about killing cops...well, you'll just have to figure that shit out for yourself.

Thanks for reading.

P.S. Are you guys downloading the music? Does it work? Do you like it? Anyone? Beuller?

Monday, July 30, 2007

Monday Morning Shuffle

I'm about to head into the woods for a 6-day backpacking trip in Wyoming so i won't be here next week. I'm not heading in until next Sunday so maybe i'll try and write next week's a little early or maybe we'll just skip it. I'm not sure yet, we'll see how it goes.
Here's the major question...while i'm packing up my gear, i'm charging up my iPod. I've got some backup headphones that i usually use while running and i was thinking how nice it would be to have some tunes to accompany me on my 14+ mile hike into and out of the mountains...then again, maybe i should just enjoy the sound of the woods and being out with nature and talk with the people i'm going with. That's the point of taking this trip isn't it? To get out of the city life for a while and commune with nature? Kind of a pickle. What do you think? (I think i'm going to take it and not use it unless i absolutely need a pick me up or an escape...can't hurt to have right?)

Oh yeah, and i'm adding a new wrinkle this week. You'll see that the song names are linked now. Click on the links and it'll allow you to actually download the song i'm talking about. Wow...only took me 8 months to figure that out...

Anyway, on with the shuffle:
1. Graceland - Paul Simon, off of Graceland
Due to the "You can Call Me Al" video, ("I can call you Betty, and Betty when you call me, you can call me Al"...seriously, yet another reference...) i can't separate Paul Simon and Chevy Chase in my mind. I just imagine Chevy Chase doing something goofy throughout every song i hear.
This album also has "Diamonds on the Souls of Her Shoes" and a bunch of other recognizable songs on it. A good one to say the least.

2. Street Signs - Ozomatli, off of Street Signs
Apparently we're only going to have title tracks today on the shuffle...
I fell in love with Ozo during the old J5/Chali 2na collaboration on Super Bowl Sundae (as opposed to Chocolate Covered Mondae...thanks Erin) which is still one of my favorite songs. This CD is heavy on the Latin flavor which makes it extremely fun to listen to and basically impossible to understand if you're mono-lingual like me. If anyone can translate Te Estoy Buscando for me, i'd appreciate it.
I love the mix of Spanish sounds with the hip-hop a different sound than the boom-chick-boom-boom we're so used to hearing on top 40 hip hop and rap. Street Signs isn't their best album, but it's pretty good. And these guys have been around forever too if you didn't notice them before. They've shared the stage with Tribe, De La Soul and others in their careers. (And they have an interesting Wikipedia entry...)

3. What Am I To You? - Norah Jones, off of Feels Like Home
I've said this before but Norah still melts my heart... There's just this warmth to her voice that feels like hot coco or whiskey or something. I know that you know what i'm talking about.
I'd like for her to call me and leave a voicemail in that voice. That would be spectacular. I need to date a musician. She would write songs about sleeping with me and make inside jokes for me in the liner notes of her album. This needs to happen...

4. Every Little Thing She Does is Magic - The Police, off of The Classics
Two stories:
1. I was watching Office reruns the other night and the episode where Phyllis gets married was on and Kevin's band, "Scrantonicity" was playing...and all they played was Police songs. It killed me for some reason...partly because it was just so stereotypical of weddings and wedding bands, but also because they just didn't have any other material. Top notch.
2. On April Fool's Day every year, the ASU student newspaper, The State Press, released a joke edition called The Stale Mess, in which they'd do their best Onion impression and make up headlines about the school and make fun of the city, etc. So one year, instead of the usual Police Beat article, it was "The Police" beat...and every story tied in with a in "A woman was arrested Tuesday night on suspicion of witchcraft. One eyewitness claimed that everything the woman did was magic, and everything she did just turned me on.
Someone was also charged with littering Tempe Town Lake after sending out a message in a bottle and then finding a hundred million bottles washed upon the shore...

5. Keep On Loving You - REO Speedwagon
I can't say anything about this song that will make it any better. Just download it (especially if you're at the office) and turn up your speakers. EVERYONE wants to start their Monday morning with this song.
I just cranked up the speakers and i'm lip-syncing into a pen and i didn't even bother to shut the door to my office.
If this doesn't get you pumped up to be alive, then you're probably dead and should call 911 immediately.

Have a good week(s). If i'm not back in two weeks, just wait longer.

Friday, July 27, 2007

Links of the Day

A lot of good musical stuff going on today:

First and foremost, the new Common CD, Finding Forever, is streaming at VH1 (see? it is good for something!) So far, i'm loving it. It's very mellow, which is what i expected.

Also, check out the new Kanye video starring, who else, Zach Galifinakis. Say what you will about Kanye, he loves having fun with his videos. I'll give him that. (Man i hope this new CD is good...)

Blender has put together a list -- with accompanying youtube videos!! -- of the "wackiest cover songs on the web." It's an amusing, if not incomplete, list. Good material for a friday.

Ok, here's my Top 5 list of Hip Hop Albums. Thanks to Kevo for getting this started:
5. Jurassic 5 - Quality Control
4. Dr. Dre - Chronic 2001
3. Talib Kweli - Quality
2. Fugees - The Score
1. Mos Def - Black on Both Sides

Monday, July 23, 2007

The Monday Morning Shuffle

Thanks to everyone that came to my party last week. When i made that post about the importance of it and the songs that were catching my ear leading up to it, i was shitting my pants, to say the least. The night turned out amazing. Everything went off completely as i had hoped and i had so much fun. I hope everyone that came had a great time too. The music was amazing...check out to hear a track or two from our DJ that night. And if you're interested in the apparel at all, it's all posted at

On with the shuffle:

1. Wearing Thin - Further Seems Forever, off of The Moon is Down
Didn't i just talk about songs that are intrinsically tied to moments a few weeks ago? This is another one.
I guess i hadn't thought of this one in a while but i once made a valiant attempt to be honorable using the words to this song. It didn't work out quite like i had planned, but i guess the offer still stands also. Ha ha. Yikes.
Anyway, this is a song from the Chris Caraba days of FSF and i gotta say, i liked those ones the best.

2. Scavenger Type - NOFX, off of Punk in Drublic
Oh, silly punk bands trying to be folky, how you amuse me.
But let's be real for a second...NOFX was one of the better and more influential punk bands of our time. They made a lot of good music and talked about a lot of political and socio-economic statements (as the do in this song) that has really been missing in todays popular music. And Punk in Drublic was one of my first Punk albums, so there's a spot in my heart for it. Take a look at this album if you'll only take you about 20 minutes to get through the entire thing...another beautiful thing about punk music...1:30 second songs!

3. Ticks & Leeches - Tool, off of Lateralus
Have i done my top 5 list of best musical screams ever? I know i've been thinking about it for a while, i guess i've just never gotten to it. Well, anyway, this song has an unhuman scream in it. How that sound came out of a man's throat, i'll never know.
Top 3 Screams Because i Can't Think of 5:
5. My Heart - Paramore, off of All We Know Is Falling (at the 2:42 mark)
2. Ticks & Leaches - Tool (at the 1:10 mark)
1. Won't Get Fooled Again - The Who (at the 7:45 mark)

2. Burn One Down - Ben Harper, off of Live from Mars
I don't even smoke pot (cough, cough...anymore...cough) and i love this song. And without getting into too much of the argument about this natural occuring plant's legality, he makes some good points in this song about the freedom to do what you want as long as you're not messing with or hurting other people. Now, you could argue that you're affecting others even if you're sitting on your couch, stoned, demolishing a bag of doritos, but that's another conversation for another time. For now, let's just enjoy the hippy drum beats and singing out against the man.

1. Ghost Song - The Doors
Speaking of hippy songs...Well i went nuts to other day and downloaded a crap load of Doors songs because i didn't think that i had enough in my collection. And this is definitely a weird one. It's got the typical Doors sound but with this kinda upbeat new age melody going on with it and Mr. Morrison doing some kind of trippy incoherent spoken word thing. Yeah, i think i'll find Light My Fire or Break on Through and stick to that...

Kevo and Ron are having a good conversation about the Top 10 hiphop albums over on their blogs so i'll probably throw my hat into that ring some time this week. In the mean time, check out their posts.

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Kid Icarus

I'm sitting here less than 24 hours away from one of the biggest moments of my adult life. I've tried to keep it down, tell myself it wasn't a big deal, play it low but i started thinking about thinking about the last time i achieved something that i actually gave a shit about...i had to go back to high school and building a house for Habitat for Humanity. Really, seriously, i haven't done anything that i was personally proud of in 6 years. You might say i'm being hard on those 6 years i've graduated high school and college, i've been the editor of a nationally published magazine, i've done some things that a lot of people would be proud of. But i hold myself to a higher standard. High School was a piece of cake. College was easier. The magazine was awesome but not a big deal by any stretch and the events that lead to me leaving that magazine pretty much marred any acheivement i felt about it.

Well, this thing tomorrow. This clothing line, this fashion show, this company. This is big. This is the first thing i've done in 6 years that i'm actually proud of. This is the first thing that has any potential. This is the first time i'm not being a lazy slacker asshole, breezing through life under the motor of minimum of effort, expecting things to be handed to me and being angry and cynical and playing the victim when it wasn't. This is the first time in 6 years that i'm even thinking about reaching my potential. I'm laying it on the line. My eggs aren't all in one basket, but they're not far from it. If this doesn't work, well then, i'm just not sure i can have any regrets about it...not in the sense that i won't, but in the sense that if i do, i won't be able to handle it. I just can't imagine a Friday in which Thursday night was not a success. I guess we'll see.

Anyway, in all of the planning and turmoil and stress i've been escaping to my sanctuary of Bose headphones and listening to some music and today two songs have occured to me that have struck major chords.

The first one is A Comet Appears by The Shins, off of Wincing the Night Away and it's pretty self explanatory why this one caught my ear. It's pessimistic, but so am i:

One hand on this wily comet, Take a drink just to give me some weight, Some uber-man I'd make, I'm barely a vapor They shone a chlorine light on, A host of individual sins, Let's carve my aging face off, Fetch us a knife, Start with my eyes, Down so the lines, Form a grimacing smile, Close your eyes to corral a virtue, Is this fooling anyone else? Never worked so long and hard, To cement a failure, We can blow on our thumbs and posture, But the lonely is such delicate things, The wind from a wasp could blow them, Into the sea, With stones on their feet, Lost to the light and the loving we need, Still to come, The worst part and you know it, There is a numbness, In your heart and it's growing, With burnt sage and a forest of bygones, I click my heels, Get the devils in line, A list of things I could lay the blame on, Might give me a way out, But with each turn, It's this front and center, Like a dart stuck square in your eye, Every post you can hitch your faith on, Is a pie in the sky, Chock full of lies, A tool we devise, To make sinking stones fly, And still to come, The worst part and you know it, There is a numbness, In your heart and it's growing.

The second song that struck me is a tad more optimistic but not much. This has been a favorite for a long time and i've always loved the meaning but tonight it struck me.

Thrice - Melting Point of Wax, off of Artist in the Ambulance:
I've waited for this moment All my life and more And now I see so clearly What I could not see before. The time is now or never This chance won't come again Throw caution and myself into the wind. There's no promise of safety with these secondhand wings But I'm willing to find out what impossible means. A leap of faith. Parody of an angel Miles above the sea I hear the voice of reason Screaming after me"You've flown far too high boy now you're too close to the sun, Soon your makeshift wings will come undone" But how will I know limits from lies if I never try?There's no promise of safety with these secondhand wings But I'm willing to find out what impossible means. I'll climb through the heavens on feathers and dreams' Cause the melting point of wax means nothing to me. Nothing to me Nothing to me I will touch the sun or I will die trying. Die Trying. Fly on these secondhand wings Willing to find out what impossible means I'll climb through the heavens on feathers and dreams' Cause the melting point of wax means nothing to me Nothing to me Means nothing to me Miles above the sea.

And the thing that caught me about this story isn't the main point i don't think. Sure the obvious story is that Icarus wanted to fly so he made wings out of wax and took off...he flew too close to the sun, the wax melted and he fell back down to earth. It's an interesting moral about ego and arrogance and learning your lesson the hard way, but there's another angle that i don't think i've ever seen until tonight:

If Icarus hadn't made his wings out of wax then they wouldn't have melted and he wouldn't have fallen. In other words, if he had made a decent product, he wouldn't have had a problem. So here's the crux of the biscuit: If my clothing is worth a shit, i'm flying to the sun. If nobody likes it, i'm falling on my ass from a long way up.