adrian is rad


a new lullaby

Filed under: — adrian @ 10:47 am

to be clear, the links in this post are mp3s of music I made as part of my band with Dave, greetings from johannesburg. you may comment on them if you like. italics.

I busted out a new version of a lullaby last night. I moved the bridge around a bit and dropped the percussion out there for a pseudo-breakdown feel.

The older version, plus the other greetings from johannesburg songs I’ve been working on (and their old versions) are in this directory.

Rock on?

Jens Lekman at Cafe du Nord

Filed under: — adrian @ 12:20 am

My 3rd concert in 4 days was Jens Lekman (“yenz lek-mahn”) at Cafe du Nord on Saturday. His name is a bit less familiar than the Mates of State and the Polyphonic Spree, but I did previously mentioned him on this blog. He recently released his first album after a couple successful EPs. This page on Secretly Canadian’s website has a bunch of (free) rare songs. It’s worth checking out if you’re curious.

Back to the show. I went with Dale and his friend Jen (also from EC at MIT). The opening bands were so-so and the band after Jens (Kelly Stolz) turned out to be not worth sticking around for, but Jens put on an enjoyable show. He played some guitar and ukulele. He had a drummer, a bass player (from the Impossible Shapes) and a cello and violin player. The latter two really added quite a bit to the songs. Jens was entertaining and his crooning voice came through really well in the mix. He had a funny habit of singing with his eyes shut. I found it a bit charming.

The judgement on the show: I’ll probably try to see him again if he’s in town. I’d recommend seeing him if you have the chance. It probably won’t change the way you view music (like, say, a Polyphonic Spree show might), but it’ll be an enjoyable show.

His music really sounds like a mix between the Magnetic Fields and maybe Belle and Sebastian, but his records are really well produced with samples of various instruments such as “Happy Birthday, Dear Friend Lisa” has this awesome latin sampled drums and later a bunch of a crowd clapping and saying “hey!”

The worst part of his set was that it was short. He said he was taking his uke out into the crowd and he would play any song by request to people personally but I didn’t see him. I would have requested “Tram #7.”


Polyphonic Spree at Bimbo’s 365

Filed under: — adrian @ 7:10 pm

The 2nd of 3 concerts I saw last week was the Polyphonic Spree at Bimbo’s 365. I went with Judit and Shad, but ran into (Kenny and Michelle) and (Julee and Droid) there.

From Bubble to Sky was one of the openers. They were a solid indie rock band, more or less playing their own songs that could have been Beatles songs. Very much in that style. I’m not going to go out of my way to hear them, but they were enjoyable to watch.

The Polyphonic Spree took a while to come on and it took even longer for the crowd to warm up to them, but once they were going, boy, were they going. A really good show. I’m always amazed at how much energy they can put into a show. If you have the chance to see them, do.

A few more things to note about the evening:

  • Droid and Julee left because Droid didn’t like the religious overtones of the show. That’s just dumb. Hello! They wear robes and sings like 10 songs about the Sun. Of course there are overtones.
  • Jon Brion played guitar for that night.
  • it was the last night for the trumpet player Logan Keese, who, up to this point, I believe, has been the only trumpet player to play with the Spree. He was really good. They had a second trumpeter there, I guess learning the ropes from Logan.
  • It was the last PS show for a while. The implication is that they’re taking a break and revamping the show/ the band. We’ll see what comes next.

germany, in dream

Filed under: — adrian @ 3:25 am

Last night I had a detailed and vivid dream that I pretty much put my job on hold and moved to germany without even knowing where I was going to live. There were other people with me (my mom, I think, was one of them). We went to Stuttgart and went around and it was all very familiar (because I have lived there before) but I decided that if I was going to live in germany it had to be Berlin so we went there. I forget where the dream ended but we definitely got to Berlin, but I don’t think I’d rented an apartment yet or anything like that.

now I’m off to sleep again. We’ll see what tonight brings.

Mates of State, Aqueduct, Smoosh at Slim’s

Filed under: — adrian @ 2:59 am

Alright, I’m catching up here on the past few days. It’s been crazy. The NoisePop Festival is going on, so I’ve been to 3 concerts in the last 4 days.

I went with Margot from the station. She’s on right now (Saturday midnight-3am) if you want to listen. We caught the last couple minutes of the first opening band, who were nice enough to listen to but not good enough for me to look up the name of or link to.

Smoosh was up next. They are a 10 and a 12 year old girl playing drums and keyboard, respectively. You think, awww, that’s cute. It’ll be fun. Then you’re like, wait, these guys are actually sort of good. In the end it’s something between a total novelty and total rockin’ music. If you’re interested, give this KEXP live in-studio recording a listen. I think you’ll be pleasantly surprised. I’m going to totally make my kids be in an indie rock band.

Aqueduct was just fun. It’s mainly one guy and his keyboards, writing songs about “Growing up on GnR” (Guns N Roses), which is available at the barsuk website I linked, and the like. His touring band has drums, guitar and bass as well. He had just found out (that day, I think) that they were going to be on Conan O’Brien two days later so he was really excited. I think in general he gets really into the show and is generally exuding happiness.

the Mates of State were great. Kori and Jason were in top form, returning to their former hometown. For the first time in all the times I’ve seen them, they brought along another keyboard in addition to the still-gorgeous Yamaha YC-45D. The second keyboard was a Yamaha electric piano, maybe a P80. I was scared at first that it was some cheesy synth that didn’t have the depth of the 45D, but it was just a piano and it allowed them to do “I Have Space,” a favorite of mine that I’ve never heard live. I was really happy with the selection of songs they did, including “A Duel Will Settle This,” the awesome one off their new EP “Along for the Ride,” their version of “These Days” and a bunch off of Team Boo. I like hearing “Hoarding for Home” and “Throw Down” live but you can’t get everything.

Overall, a really solid and enjoyable show throughout.

I like to make lists of all the shows I went to by bands that I’ve seen a ton, so here’s the one for the Mates of State:

  • Oct. 7, 2001 at the Middle East with Beulah
  • Feb. 23, 2002 at MassArt
  • Oct. 5, 2002 at TT the Bear’s
  • Feb. 1, 2002 at the Middle East with Rainer Maria
  • Oct. 10, 2003 at the Bottom of the Hill
  • Feb. 6, 2004 at the Los Gatos Outhouse (the teen center out back of the Los Gatos High School Football Field)
  • Feb. 23, 2005 at Slim’s with Aqueduct and Smoosh


Filed under: — adrian @ 12:08 am



motown, all that you’d want

Filed under: — adrian @ 2:29 pm

They’re releasing all of the Motown single ever on CD. The first volume, 1959-1961 is out. It’s 155 tracks and 6 discs. It’s expensive but I’ve been thinking about getting.

I imagine the 1961-1963 and 1963-1965 sets will be really awesome (assuming they keep going in the same pattern) and some of the later sets will be not as great.

Another awesome set that I want to get is Back to Mono a collection of Phil Spector’s work from 1958-1969.


Filed under: — adrian @ 1:48 pm

This idiom dictionary is awesome.

My favorites:

  • as the actress said to the bishop (UK) This idiom is used to highlight a sexual reference, deliberate or accidental.
  • between the devil and the deep blue sea If you are caught between the devil and the deep blue sea, you are in a dilemma; a difficult choice.
  • fine words butter no parsnips This idiom means that it’s easy to talk, but talk is not action
  • Hoist with your own petard If you are hoist with your own petard, you get into trouble or caught in a trap that you had set for someone else.
  • Close the stable door after the horse has bolted If people try to fix something after the problem has occurred, they are trying to close the stable door after the horse has bolted.
  • How long is a piece of string? If someone has no idea of the answer to a question, they can ask ‘How long is a piece of string?’ as a way of indicating their ignorance.

And a few everyday ones that are just strange:

  • by the skin of the teeth
  • a bone to pick
  • dressed up to the nines
  • last-ditch (effort/ attempt)
  • let the cat out of the bag

All this idiom talk has also gotten me looking for idiom stuff in German, because if idioms can be this foreign in English, they must be hell in German. Here’s one German-English idiom dictionary.

a quick note

Filed under: — adrian @ 2:27 am

I’m tired and about to go to bed, but I wanted to make a note on time sensitive material.

One of the bands that opened for the Mates of State was the Aqueduct and they’re going to be on Conan O’Brien later tonight (Friday, the 25th). Check them out if you’re around.

They play some fun music.



Filed under: — adrian @ 4:15 pm

when I post my music, do you not comment because:
a) it’s bad?
b) you read my blog at work and don’t have speakers/ headphones? or
c) you don’t really know me so it’d seem sort of awkward?

I suppose I could expand this question to include people not commenting in general.

top 1 phrase I’ve heard too much of recently

Filed under: — adrian @ 1:37 pm

therein lies the rub

I have a radio show

Filed under: — adrian @ 9:57 am

did you know that?

I did a radio show this morning.

Did you know that?

Some good stuff in there.

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