Friday Mixtape: Alanis Morissette

IT’S FRIDAY!!!!

That means it’s time for the Friday Mixtape. There is no tape and no mix, just 3 tracks from a single artist. Hope this skates you into the weekend! Today I bring you:

Alanis Morissette

Who She Is: Kickass Canadian, also American. Singer, songwriter, guitarist, flautist, pianist, harmonicaist. Wife, mother.

Why I Love Her (and Why You Should Too): Are you kidding?! Alanis has been a force of nature since she bellowed “You Oughta Know”—bolting us upright in 1995. We oughta and we did. Jagged Little Pill sold 33 million copies worldwide, making it the second highest selling album by a female artist (she should have been first, considering she was behind Shania Twain’s Come On Over—more like Come on!).

The ’90s were great for women: we had Natalie Merchant and Fiona Apple. Lauryn Hill and The Spice Girls. Joan Osborne and Paula Cole. Meredith Brooks—(that bitch!)—and Lisa Loeb. Tracy Chapman and Billie Meyers. Shawn Colvin and—(who could forget?)—Jewel. Later, there were others, like Dido. In 1997, Sarah McLachlan founded Lilith Fair, flicking off the myth that you couldn’t feature two consecutive female musicians. In many ways, this couldn’t have happened without Alanis. Her furor, her honesty, her angst, completely changed how America viewed women artists. Continue reading Friday Mixtape: Alanis Morissette

Friday Mixtape: Tegan & Sara + Against Me!

IT’S FRIDAY!!!!

That means it’s time for the next installment of the Friday Mixtape. This week’s a twofer (I know, I know. We’re changing it up already). Hope this skates you into the weekend! Today I bring you:

Tegan & Sara + Against Me!

Let me just say: It’s been a rough week. This song, a duet between Against Me! and Tegan of Tegan & Sara got me through. Both bands save me one note (and one day) at a time.

“Borne on the FM Waves of the Heart”:

I love the way this video is edited. Also, I never would have thought to put Laura and Tegan’s voices together; their music is so different! It’s that vocal contrast that makes this track.

Favorite lyric: “Anxiety, anxiety! You give me no mercy! Grind my teeth, smooth and flat, in my sleep.” Continue reading Friday Mixtape: Tegan & Sara + Against Me!

Friday Mixtape: UVERworld

IT’S FRIDAY!!!!

That means it’s time for the first-ever Friday Mixtape. There is no tape and no mix, just 3 tracks from a single artist. Hope this skates you into the weekend! Today I bring you:

UVERworld

Who They Are: 5-piece rock band from Kusatsu, Shiga. Housemates in Tokyo.

Takuya∞ – frontman: lead vocals, programming
Katsuya – band leader: rhythm guitar, rapping, keyboards
Akira – lead guitar, programming, backing vocals
Nobuto – bass
Shintarō – drums, percussion

Why I Love Them (and Why You Should Too): I’ve been incredibly blessed with some amazing animé on Netflix. If you haven’t already, check out Blue Exorcist, Darker Than Black, Baccano!, Black Butler, Bakka and Test, Ouran High School Host Club. There are some rockin’ opening (and closing) themes for these shows. Checking out live performances on YouTube, I was pleasantly surprised to find I am not alone in discovering great music as a result of great storytelling. A lot of animé fans find awesome music this way. While I am opposed to listening to music without knowing what the artist is saying, I feel slightly less guilty because fans will translate lyrics. I love that their name originated from mixing the German word über with the word over. So Japanese!

UVERworld have been on my Grooveshark for over a month now. Check ’em out:

My intro to UVERworld – Opening theme for Blue (Ao no) Exorcist:

Favorite lyric: “Life’s a bitch so if it’s easy, you’re doing it wrong.”

Continue reading Friday Mixtape: UVERworld

Fear of Androgyny: Thoughts on the Gender-Bending Toyota Ad

A topless model in a red bikini bottom and trench coat strides toward a cherry red Toyota. The trench is cut high in back to reveal the model’s twitching ass. The trench comes off: narrow waist, smooth back. The model walks on, unsmiling: sculpted cheekbones, gauged ears, blonde hair draping shoulders. Once in front of the car, the model turns. Hair flips over the shoulder, arms cross. A fraction of a second and you realize: It’s a guy.

Continue reading Fear of Androgyny: Thoughts on the Gender-Bending Toyota Ad

“Win Win” Certainly Feels Like It

In possibly his best film, Tom McCarthy delivers a moving comedy about taking control of your life in Win Win

In the opening sequence of Win Win (2011), a young redheaded girl (Clare Foley) climbs in bed with her mother in the space where her father should be. “Where’s daddy?” she whispers.

Eyes closed, her mother answers, “He’s running.”

The little girl considers a moment before asking, “From what?”

In this hipster day and age, sincerity has little currency. Continue reading “Win Win” Certainly Feels Like It