Monday, April 21, 2008


We headed to Cape May this weekend for a band weekend of music, music, skee ball, and basketball. And more basketball. At 50 cents a play, we racked up far more tickets at basketball than skeeball, and we could go head-to-head. Besides, Matt's 300+ point skeeball game was maligned when the machine read "CAL". WTF? Gimme my tickets!

To recap: Mighty Chris Kudela of the St. John's Red Storm (nee Men) held out a formidable 68 point showing, and the four of us played that machine so much it ran out of tickets twice!! Jon Heller of the Temple Owls proved to Kentucky Wildcat Matt Cummins that the left hoop was in fact counting the baskets correctly, but then was subject to 10 3 pointers in a row in Matt's only 60+ point game. It was never clear if Jim Greif was a Pitt Panther or a George Mason Fightin' Fairfaxian Bricklayer, so we'll just call him Switzerland, and yeah, the Swiss like to block shots. WTF? Gimme a quarter!

In culinary news: Matt wasn't hip to Jon's burger concoction, but missed the instruction to leave the burger on the bleeding side of medium rare. Mr. Grillmaster also vetoed grilling the chicken burgers, as Jim would surely not like them flavored with the charcoal they were slowly dripping down into. Jim did pick up some pretty killer veggie chips that made a snack trinity with garden salsa sunchips and bold party chex mix. And make that not one, not Two, but THREE bags of microwave popcorn. And boat races, c'mon Chris, will spades EVER win? WTF?

The neighbors were great about our noise, one admonished his guests for potentially staying inside on such a beautiful day, and the other couldn't hear our acoustic stylee. Turns out our sound isn't much louder than a weed whacker or other such lawnscaping tools. Had we only known this at the Essjay, we would have mowed the lawn more regularly AND had Dano do it while we were practicing in the basement! ps- Mattresses on the windows help, just make sure you don't kill your drummer with them.

We have new songs to perform! We have shows coming up! We have shows in the works! The weather is getting super-nice (hella-nice for all you reading from California)! Look for photos on the website soon!


Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Mark Your Calendars!

For Immediate Release:

My Friend Autumn's long promised debut full-length, "Summer Music For Winter People" will be released on Tuesday, May 6th, 2008!

Recording sessions began in earnest in 2004 when the band had just 2 members. Delayed by milestones- graduation, marriage and death- the record is ultimately about navigating life and the hope that who you once were is constantly being revised for the better. With our best line-up to date, MFA is poised to take over your mind: one song at a time. Four years in the making, open your mind and let us inside!


Tuesday, April 01, 2008


I've been following the hype surrounding REM's new record, Accelerate, with a somewhat keen eye. I'm not one of those people who scold "new" REM, and canonize "old" REM. While their pre-"quitting touring" output is seminal and is a must listen, I do not discriminate against anything after. Actually, I consider "Up" to be a classic. How many bands do you hear being influenced by those who have influenced them? Bands don't stick around that long. Imagine Pavement reuniting and playing "Stockton Kwassa Kwassa" and taking back the cheekiness Vampire Weekend seems to have lifted from the "Crooked Rain, Crooked Rain" promo materials. (Of course, REM was also borrowed mixer Nigel Godrich, Radioheads' producer, which could explain a lot!)

The next album, "Reveal," was entertaining, and showed hints of the band looking backwards into their own catalog for inspiration. But by the time "Around The Sun" landed, I couldn't take it. The songs plodded, while the production seemed grafted from a David Gray album. It was obviously dialed in. REM is a corporation (any band lasting over 25 years is as hard to disband as Bear Stearns) and I was suspicious that this lugubrious album was it!

BUT WAIT, there's more. REM's not dead.

"Supernatural Superserious" sounds like dinosaurs awakening. Moreover, REM is deeply entrenched in Warner Brothers. There won't be many albums released this year that get this much of a push, a practice that evokes a sort of nostalgia post-modern consumerism. Regardless of what other people think, I like the sound of this song. It's reminiscent of "New Adventures in Hi Fi," coincidentally (?) my favorite REM album (!)

ps- I could really go for a Pavement reunion, though would prefer them to leave all vampires out of it.