SEPTEMBER 

If you’re looking for new music, you should look elsewhere. I am fairly certain that none of these songs were released in the last year, or the year before that. This wasn’t on purpose, but perhaps that’s because there’s something about September that makes us look back. Looking back on summer, looking back on years ago. Nostalgia looks good on you, September.

  1. Generationals - Ten-Twenty-Ten
  2. Earth, Wind & Fire - September
  3. Redbone - Come And Get Your Love
  4. Mission of Burma - That’s When I Reach For My Revolver
  5. Little Dragon - Ritual Union
  6. Rusted Root - Send Me On My Way
  7. Cyndi Lauper - I Drove All Night
  8. David Bowie - Magic Dance
  9. alt-J - Breezeblocks
  10. Hole - Miss World
  11. Erasure - A Little Respect
  12. Taj Majal - Leaving Trunk
  13. Roy Orbison - You Got It
  14. The Raspberries - Go All The Way
  15. Blind Melon - Change
  16. Beat Happening - Indian Summer
  17. Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young - Our House

brightwalldarkroom:

Brianna Ashby on Fried Green Tomatoes (1991):

My mother died on June 17, 2000, the morning of my high school graduation. I was standing barefoot in my best friend’s kitchen as my grandmother tried to lie to me over the phone, her voice twice it’s normal pitch and entirely lacking it’s customary softness and sparkle. Her forced nonchalance made my knees buckle, and the lump in my throat had me gasping for air even before she could finally bring herself to say the word, that word. And then, the lightning strike. White light, white heat. Blindness. The next thing I remember I was shifting anxiously in my plastic folding chair, waiting for my name to come over the microphone, cursing the cap and gown I could have sworn were made of lead. I’m still surprised I heard my name at all.

I received a standing ovation when I crossed the stage to claim my diploma—the audience having been led through a moment of silence in my mother’s honor just a few minutes prior—but I was so focused on simply trying to keep my atoms from scattering themselves in all directions that I had no idea. The whiteness blanketed everything; I saw, but I couldn’t see. My world came to a grinding halt, even as things continued to move around me as they always had, their rhythms unchanged. How could everything be so completely different and yet entirely the same? I was a floe of ice drifting aimlessly on a shifting sea.

A heart can be broken, but it will keep beating just the same.

For years I laid awake at night, imagining the world with my mother still in it. I had prosaic dreams where she’d call me on the phone to ask a simple question, or I’d walk by our kitchen and see her standing over the stove. With little effort at all I could vividly conjure up her image, picturing the way her nose wrinkled when she laughed, or the way she looked when she was perched on the couch, engrossed in a book. The stunning ease with which I could reproduce it all made it difficult to accept that it was nothing more than a composite of moments already spent. The realization that I would never again see the face of someone I loved so fiercely nearly defied comprehension. When someone is so deeply alive in your heart, how can they possibly be dead?”

This is an excerpt from the current issue of Bright Wall/Dark Room magazine. To read the rest of this essay, purchase a copy of the issue for $2, or subscribe online now. 

brightwalldarkroom:

image

I WILL FOLLOW YOU INTO THE DARK

by Michelle Said

This is what we want: to fall in love, to find the person that will make the day-to-day bearable, even enjoyable, to have security in finding a home within another.

We want to grow old with that person.

We will attend operas…

Need a good Thursday morning cry? 

AUGUST

For many years I did not appreciate August. I thought it was too much. Too hot, too muggy, and when I was a kid, way too close to the start of school. It also happened to be my birth month, and if you have a summer birthday, you know how lonely summer birthdays as a kid could be. As an adult I can appreciate the abundance of August, and I can appreciate the fact that my birthday can be spent outside in the open air. August is a month that is not afraid to burn brightly. I like to think this mix is a little like that: fun, and poppy, and optimistic about the future, with only a hint of melancholy.

  1. Charli XCX - Boom Clap
  2. The Outfield - Your Love
  3. Tanlines - All Of Me
  4. The New Pornographers - Brill Bruisers
  5. The Beach Boys - Hang On To Your Ego
  6. Jenny Lewis - Just One of the Guys
  7. La Roux - Tropical Chancer
  8. Bow Wow Wow - Aphrodisiac
  9. Schoolboy Q - Man Of The Year
  10. Ought - Today More Than Any Other Day
  11. The Doobie Brothers - Takin’ It To The Streets
  12. How To Dress Well - Repeat Pleasure
  13. First Aid Kit - Silver Lining
  14. Sigur Ros - Gobbledigook 
  15. Talking Heads - This Must Be The Place
  16. The Smiths - There Is A Light That Never Goes Out
  17. Janis Joplin - Summertime
brightwalldarkroom:

We are insanely excited to officially announce some very BIG news:
Beginning this week, RogerEbert.com will be running one essay from each new issue of Bright Wall/Dark Room magazine on their website.
We are partnering with them to make this possible, thanks to the work of their editor-in-chief (and writer/critic extraordinaire) Matt Zoller Seitz, who reached out to us and offered us a chance to be a part of the amazing work they’re doing to further Ebert’s legacy and spirit by continuing to build an international community of passionate critics, writers, and fans through the site.
We feel immensely blessed to be associated, in any way, with Roger Ebert (who was, for many of us, the man who first helped us fall in love with movies), and we couldn’t be more excited about this collaboration! 

brightwalldarkroom:

We are insanely excited to officially announce some very BIG news:

Beginning this week, RogerEbert.com will be running one essay from each new issue of Bright Wall/Dark Room magazine on their website.

We are partnering with them to make this possible, thanks to the work of their editor-in-chief (and writer/critic extraordinaire) Matt Zoller Seitz, who reached out to us and offered us a chance to be a part of the amazing work they’re doing to further Ebert’s legacy and spirit by continuing to build an international community of passionate critics, writers, and fans through the site.

We feel immensely blessed to be associated, in any way, with Roger Ebert (who was, for many of us, the man who first helped us fall in love with movies), and we couldn’t be more excited about this collaboration! 

Vincent Van Gogh Irises, 1889.

(via sigh-twombly)

Taken almost exactly five years ago. Miss you, dude. 

Taken almost exactly five years ago. Miss you, dude. 

The Glove - A Blues in Drag

I just found out a wonderful, kind, generous friend passed away last night in the most mundane of ways. Fuck addiction.

He once wrote how he loved this song, that it transformed his brain:

This song does extraordinary things to me. Its effects differ depending on the season. In the death heat of a Georgia summer, that slow suffocation, I can play it just at dusk, and it ushers in a breeze. It always ushers in a breeze; be it through a window, or a garage door, where I’m sitting on the wood step thinking of where I only wish I was. The melody is cool like that painted cement floor. It’s sporadic. Robert Smith sits at the keys and plays airy notes from the center of the sharps and flats, and leave behind them sunshine echoes cool’d by the shade. They hang there, dabbling, then… they jump. It jumps so high… an octave, off the page. And you jump with it, and you’re way up in a blue sky with winking ledger notes, so far to the right they almost click.  Those keys are out there, places where a piano teacher waits with ruler… uncharted territory - There Be Dragons!!! It is someplace that makes you lightheaded, where the notes of heaven reside. The ledger noteswink at you,and smile in your direction… You, The Clever One, so flighty and bold to float up so high with such disregard to the fall. But it feels like someplace you’ve always belonged, and that’s what the wink was for. “You clever bastard!How did you get all the way up here!?” And you are welcomed to a view of a crystalline dream-scape.

I hope you’re up there listening to this song right now, buddy. You are already missed. And I’m so angry with you right now that it breaks my heart. But it’s a selfish anger. I get that. I just think the world deserved to spend more time with you. 

Summer came so late this year here. Even in early June we were still wrapping ourselves in cardigans to stave off the cold. But now we are here in the heat and it feels so nice and warm. Growing up in California I hated the heat. I found it oppressive, overbearing, suffocating. I deal better in warmth in small, coveted doses. Little gems of warm days and tank tops. Blue water, sandy beaches. July to me feels like the most beautiful, shining days of summer where anything feels possible. 

  1. Panama Wedding - Feels Like Summer
  2. Electric Guest - This Head I Hold
  3. Generationals - Trust
  4. Go West - The King of Wishful Thinking
  5. Len - Steal My Sunshine
  6. Kanye West feat T-Pain - Good Life 
  7. The King Khan & BBQ Show - Hold Me Tight
  8. T. Rex - Mambo Sun
  9. Wild Belle - It’s Too Late
  10. Autre Ne Veut - Play by Play
  11. P.M. Dawn - Set Adrift On Memory Bliss
  12. Shy Girls - Voyeur’s Gaze
  13. The Reflections - (Just Like) Romeo & Juliet
  14. Haim - Honey & I
  15. Phantogram - Don’t Move
  16. The Stepkids - Shadows On Behalf
  17. Purity Ring - Fineshrine

katiecoyle:

I was a snob once, too. When I first started writing short stories in college, I was determined to read only the best, and so I focused on the Western canon, on Hemingway and Faulkner and Jonathan Franzen; I took a small step away from my beloved Harry Potter, understanding it to be different and lesser. It went on that way for a long time, until the summer after my first year in grad school, when I picked up Kelly Link’s Pretty Monsters in the teen section of the Carnegie Library and something shifted in my brain. It was like the curtains had been parted and I suddenly saw that my whole conception of value had been formed and shaped by people who looked exactly the same (people who looked like Hemingway and Faulkner and Franzen), that the world was much bigger than that, much more interesting, and so much more fun it made me want to scream. This is the thing I can’t get over in these conversations—we talk about Literary like it’s not in itself a genre. We talk about books as if it’s just understood that there’s a Universal Good and a Universal Bad, and we act like the Universal Good is not overpopulated with white males, and we act like readers of the Universal Bad don’t know any better.  

But look: I can read and understand and appreciate High Literature, and usually I don’t. And that’s because as we should all well know, it’s our choices that show who we truly are, far more than our abilities. And what I want to be is happy.