Still Sucking and Seeing: A Review in Progress

I came to Arctic Monkeys late–probably because so many critics were telling me I would love them. Witty, caustic, frenetic British post-punk alterna-pop–what’s not to love? I couldn’t imagine, however, what would separate them from their counterparts–from Bloc Party, or Babyshambles, or The Kaiser Chiefs, or Foals, for instance?  Simply put, what these bands all… More

The Human Face

Of course, my shrink was two tables over watching me through the whole dinner. Not that he meant to. In fact, he probably was trying to avoid looking at me, as I was him. I did feel a bit like putting on a show, though, so I laughed often and tried to contribute as much… More

The End of the World

Last night my wife and I held our dog Boo one last time. I kissed her on the head as her heart slowed to stop. We’d been at this same emergency  hospital, staffed with wonderful people, just six months before with our thirteen -year old Italian Greyhound Teddy after a cancerous tumor hemorrhaged in his… More

The Beauty of Constraints

Son Lux is the classically trained musician Ryan Lott.  Unlike his first album At War with Walls and Mazes, which took three years of tinkering to create an unclassifiable mix of hip-hop chamber pop with an indie sensibility,  We Are Rising was composed and recorded, as part of The RPM Challenge, in exactly four weeks.… More

Work in the Off-Season

A recent collaboration I was commissioned by Mark DeCarteret to do for his as-yet-unpublished novel, Off-Season. This extraordinary novel, set in the gaudy squalor of Seatown, can be found excerpted at Word Riot.  Where are the brave publishers out there willing to take on literature that does more than attempt a “deceptive simplicity?” More