November 30, 2023

Some albums that didn’t make my 2023 favorites, but were still enjoyed… Alternative/Indie edition:

  • Pure Music by Strange Ranger
  • Infinite Spring by Superviolet
  • s/t by Liquid Mike
  • In the End It Always Does by The Japanese House
  • Lucky for You by Bully
  • Careful of Your Keepers by This is the Kit

Some albums that didn’t make my 2023 favorites, but were still enjoyed… Hardcore/Punk edition:

  • Slogan Machine by Gumm
  • Living Proof by Drain
  • Consume Me by Big Laugh
  • Hellmode by Jeff Rosenstock
  • Walk the Wheel by Truth Cult
  • Would You Miss It? By Koyo
  • Of Days Renewed… by Magnitude

November 27, 2023

Announcing Crucial Tracks

I am super excited to announce the launch of a newsletter project with my friend Chris (aka The Itinerant Printer). The site is called Crucial Tracks and it focuses on the songs that made you who you are today.

Everyone has moments in their life that are defined by music. Whether it’s a song that introduced you to a genre of music that changed your tastes and style, or a lyric that made you think about the world in a different way. Songs can represent relationships. Songs can trigger memories. These are all crucial tracks.

Once or twice per month we will feature an interview with interesting people from all walks of life. (We’ve got a pretty amazing list!) And in between, we will be focusing on new releases and tracks that have moved us.

The plan for December is interviews with Chris and myself, as well as our year-end lists. Then we will kick off the new year with our very first guest interview.

Head on over to the site and subscribe – you won’t want to miss this!

November 21, 2023

I’m pretty set with my favorite albums from 2023. I’m going to write up something in depth during December, but here’s the list.

Something for everyone: indie, pop, singer songwriter, alt-country, 90s alternative redux, emo, hardcore, R&B and hip hop. Hope you find something new that you love.

September 27, 2023

I have a fantasy hockey league that had two drop out from last season. It’s $40 to enter with payouts of $240/120/40 to top 3 teams. If interested, let me know and I will get you the details.

August 24, 2023

Finished reading: Upgrade by Blake Crouch 📚

August 22, 2023

Saw Sunny Day Real Estate tonight - been over 20 years since the last time and they sound just as good as ever.

August 15, 2023

Completed the Barbenheimer:

🍿 Oppenheimer (2023) - ★★★★★

Oppenheimer poster

🍿 Barbie (2023) - ★★★★★

Barbie poster

We’ve been to the theater more this summer than the last 5 years combined. Here are a few others we liked:

🍿 Theater Camp (2023) - ★★★★☆

Theater Camp poster

🍿 Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse (2023) - ★★★★★

Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse poster

🍿 Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 (2023) - ★★★★☆

Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 poster

Can’t believe it’s travel hockey season already. Really glad we fell in with this great group of families & girls. Looking forward to see where they go in their first year at 16u.

August 7, 2023

Loving the new wallpaper we put up yesterday in our small bathroom. Another step toward completing the project!

August 3, 2023

21 years with this amazing lady!

The Making of CIVILIAN by Wye Oak - featuring Jenn Wasner and Andy Stack — Life of the Record — Overcast

One of my favorite albums of all time. A great conversation with the band as they look back at recording and their experiences around that time of their life.

July 2, 2023

We’ve reached the half way point of my song-a-day playlist for 2023. Follow along on Apple Music!…

June 30, 2023

The Mysterious Case of the Fake Gay Marriage Website, the Real Straight Man, and the Supreme Court | The New Republic

The lengths people go to 1.) be assholes or 2.) make a name for themselves or their business is astonishing. I don’t know how these people can sleep at night.

🍿 Nimona (2023) - ★★★★★

Nimona poster

Amazing adaptation! We loved it so much.

June 17, 2023

Used the town-wide garage sale as a tool to get the bicycle out and prep it for the Ride for Roswell next weekend. Lots going on in Kenmore today!

June 16, 2023

Two new additions to my Best of 2023 album list: the recent releases from feeble little horse and Home is Where. Both in top 5!

June 15, 2023

Seems as if Reeder got their Twitter access back. Getting flooded with those feeds now. After a brief skim, nothing of interest nor anything that would draw me back to using Twitter full time. Even if the stable tech genius wasn’t running the show.

June 14, 2023

This year is turning into a pretty amazing one for concerts! Seeing for the first time: Thrice, Middle Kids, Digable Planets, Cat Power, Alvvays, Alex G; and again: Manchester Orchestra, Jimmy Eat World, Modest Mouse, Pixies, Broken Social Scene. All through the end of September.

June 13, 2023

Stanley Cup game got out of hand quickly so I put together my top ten album list for the first half of the year.

June 5, 2023

Got to see Thrice play The Artist in the Ambulance tonight in full. So good live!

June 3, 2023

This Stanley Cup opening in Vegas made me hate that team even more than I do. Eichel was enough but that was beyond over the top. Let’s go Panthers!

May 31, 2023

The Kids are Alright

Yesterday I took two of our kids to Toronto to see the band Lovejoy at the Danforth Music Hall. Over the course of the morning, news was shared that folks were already lining up at 9am. We obviously couldn’t make it that early, but we were able to get to the neighborhood around 3:30p/4p.

We started off by taking a walk through the neighborhood, admiring all of the cool shops and doing a bit of record browsing at Kops Records, before taking a pass of the line outside the venue. The doors were still at least 3 hours away, which also meant 3 hours of waiting in the sun. The kids still wanted to take part in the wait, so we did. I immediately ran across the street to Loblaws to buy snacks and drinks since it was hot. We then settled down to pass the time.

The most obvious thing we noticed was that the line stretched from the venue entrance to the nearest corner, then south on Broadview Ave. The second thing was how dedicated and prepared these folk were – chairs, makeshift sun shades, and umbrellas of course… but also crafts and music and singing and merriment. Many folks shared the Lovejoy themed things they made, the food and drink they bought, and other supplies they brought to the experience.

Beyond the great people watching, it was amazing to see the group self organize – there was a person doing regular welfare checks: updating the time remaining, reminding folks to hydrate and take shade breaks, and sharing other pieces of knowledge and sometimes supplies. There were folks passing out leftover food and drink, people collecting autographs of all the line-goers on their t-shirts and flags (and even bodies), cosplayers taking photos with anyone who asked, and various other forms of entertainment. There was no shortage of things to take in, even while sitting still on a side street in Toronto for three plus hours.

I thought this was amazing and inspiring. Even beyond the instant community that popped up for this event, the vibe was joyful and open. You could tell these fans were having a good time sharing this experience with people. It gave me hope that the world isn’t just a hateful place where we are under the constant threat of active shooters (true story: there was a potential shooter threat in my neighborhood while we were in Toronto) or a place where fascist laws are being passed that seriously endanger my kid.

I shared as much (albeit in fewer words) with the seemingly like-minded dad standing behind us, though his bewildered look caught me off guard and I didn’t expand on the thought. Yes, these kids weren’t the “standard future” you’d expect anyone to be excited for, but that’s exactly the fucking point. “Normal” looking people are doing a really great job at fucking this world up – whether it’s climate change, racism, fascism, capitalism, all of the LGBTQ targeting – the status quo isn’t working. And these kids know it.

The more I thought about this, the more I thought these kids were just as punk or radical as I ever was (or am), and it has nothing to do with the genre of music. It’s the DIY attitude, the creativity, the sense of community, the looking out for one another – the acceptance of everyone and every thing. Those are the things I saw. Not the hair or clothes or any identity markers. That’s the surface stuff that can distract you, especially if you don’t care to look any deeper.

It’s also no different than any other out-group of young people, whether it was the skaters/punks/hardcore kids when I was younger or these kids now. Which is why I was surprised that anyone who was a part of that growing up, couldn’t see the analogy to this group of young people now.

For as much as the people caught up in our status quo love to talk about freedom, these kids have it right. For those on the right, freedom is literally a personalized, selfish freedom (the end-all, be-all of “I can do what I want”) vs. real freedom where people are free to be themselves without judgement.

I really hope these young people don’t get caught up in the apathy and jaded feelings that trapped my generation (though as the parents of these kids I write about, we may have the last laugh!) They truly have the capacity to make the kind of changes we need to save this world.

In the meantime, let’s listen to the kids a little more, please. They know a lot more than they are given credit for…

I know I couldn’t me more proud of my three.

May 24, 2023

Keep fluctuating between thinking today is Tuesday / Wednesday. I am glad whenever I know it’s Wednesday though 😂