September 11, 2008

The Walkmen

I saw The Walkmen on Tuesday. It was a great show. I got a spot right in front of the stage. I talked to the keyboardist a little before the show, which was nice.

Their new album is pretty fantastic.

I really like their approach to music, and I think to life in general. There's a great interview with them on where they're asked about their relationship with environmentalism, and I really like how they respond.

If you don't know already is the best thing that's happened in the history of live music. And as you know, I'm not prone to hyperbole.

Their masterpiece:

Also, if you haven't done so already MAKE SURE you download their Leonard Cohen covers from this link. These tracks are completely astonishing.

I watched Miklos Jancso's The Red & The White two nights ago. Incredible, incredible, incredible.

I'll definitely be exploring more of his work.

I find what Matt Damon says here compelling.

If you're looking for an intelligent, big-picture perspective on this election check THIS out. I can't recommend it highly enough.


nathan davies said...

i must thank you matt for all your talk about the us election. it's helped me become a little more educated on the topic which is good. but one thing that been depressing me lately in the news and other places is the lack of coverage on the canadian election coming up. i guess i just find it sad that our country is more concerned and follows another country's election more than its own. but i guess i'm not surprised.
these are my thoughts of the day.
p.s. the matt damon thing was very interesting.

jon said...

i also find matthew's political links helpful. it is hard to find decent election coverage for either country.

i loved (sarcasm) the line i heard on the radio the other day. they were talking about the canadian election and some of the old old dirt that each major party had been able to dig up against the other (particularly about a couple different people in a couple different ridings). i don't deny that this is relevant to some degree, but they spent most of their "election coverage" on it.

and then, here's the kicker, the newslady concluded by mentioning the issue harper had tried to raise that day and said something to the effect that once again, unfortunately no on is hearing the issues because it is overshadowed by the political games.

but the media chooses its stories. the content and time of those stories. all we hear is the back and forth "politics" and not the content of the issues that those politics are about.

my guess is that a large percentage of news reporters hardly know what the difference is between a liberal and a conservative aside from a few caricatures.

there are a few good analysts and shows, but even they spend so much time talking about spin control that it is no wonder spin control is such a central part of what politics is about.

even if you watch the question period from the house of commons you are watching mostly a bunch of guys clamouring for a soundbyte.

of course, the populace is important, and should be, but we need something better from our media. and we need something better from ourselves. i should inform myself better. it is hard to know where to start.

anyway, on another note, why can't i watch videos? i couldn't get damon's video to work and have had similar problems on other blogs too. is it that the link expires, or is it a problem on my end? does anyone know?

oh, another thing: on your EP my fav is "congregation" so far. enjoyable and intriguing. thanks so much for putting it out there.

Matthew A. Wilkinson said...


about the video: I dunno. It's a youtube video (; do you have trouble with it on youtube?

I couldn't agree more when you write that "all we hear is the back and forth "politics" and not the content of the issues that those politics are about."

The last few months I've been letting go of some of my political idealism, but it still frustrates me when the media and politicians perpetuate this era of soundbite policies. They seem to be trying to appeal to the dumbest people in their audience, and that frustrates me.

As an aside: One of the several reasons I have no time for Jack Layton is that he speaks EXCLUSIVELY in soundbites. In every interview or speech I've ever seen he has just spewed one pre-written party line after another. I can't trust a politician like that. It's a shame too, 'cos I'm a left-leaning fellow, but so long as A) Layton is their leader, and B) they continue their ridiculous policy on Afghanistan, they'll never get my vote.

Yeah, question period is painful.

Re: Congregation. Thanks so much. This EP is definitely my least important release, but some of the songs are important to me (such as Congregation) so it's great to hear someone is getting something from it. Flattery will get you everywhere.



It's true the Americans are getting a lot more attention from everybody -myself included.

I think that's because their election is more consequential and far far far more interesting. In Canada both major party leaders are intelligent, reasonable, and probably honest men -so there's nothing to be up in arms about. Also, none of our national party leaders are very inspiring. None of them are offering any meaningful vision for the future of the country -so there's nothing to get excited about there either. They're both fine. I like Dion better, but I respect Harper (though every time I see one of the damned conservative commercials I lose a little respect for him and his party)

For the record, I'll be voting Liberal, unless I find an independent I like.

Here's a list:
My favourite high profile politicians in Canada are as follows (in order):

1. Michael Ignatieff
2. Michael Ignatieff
3. Michael Ignatieff
4. Michael Ignatieff
5. Senator Romeo Dalaire (an Ignatieff supporter)
6. Ralph Goodale
7. Peter Mckay -I don't often agree with him, but I find him genuinely thoughtful, open-minded, and slightly less partisan than most MPs.