Blogging at the intersection of urban studies and popular music

Posts tagged "aesthetics"
Martha and the Muffins – "Several Styles of Blonde Girls Dancing" b/w "I'm No Good at Conversation" (WAKE 4)

Martha and the Muffins – “Several Styles of Blonde Girls Dancing” b/w “I’m No Good at Conversation” (WAKE 4)

“Several Styles of Blonde Girls Dancing (Edited)” b/w “I’m No Good at Conversation” Current/RCA Records WAKE 4 (Canada) Released probably in spring or summer 1983 Produced by Daniel Lanois with Mark Gane and Martha Johnson Were you maybe disappointed by Martha and the Muffins’ use of album cuts for both sides of their previous two...
Martha and the Muffins – "Was Ezo" b/w "Trance And Dance" (DIN 27)

Martha and the Muffins – “Was Ezo” b/w “Trance And Dance” (DIN 27)

“Was Ezo” b/w “Trance And Dance” DinDisc Records DIN 27 (UK) Released on October 30, 1980 Produced by Mike Howlett More than any other Martha and the Muffins single, this feels like the one that got away. Like every single they released in 1980 after “Echo Beach,” this made no impact on the British charts....
Martha and the Muffins – "About Insomnia" b/w "1 4 6" (DIN 19)

Martha and the Muffins – “About Insomnia” b/w “1 4 6” (DIN 19)

“About Insomnia” b/w “1 4 6” DinDisc Records DIN 19 (UK) Released on July 4, 1980 Produced by Mike Howlett Things were moving rapidly for Martha and the Muffins by June 1980. Metro Music had spent six weeks in the UK album charts, so the Muffins’ label DinDisc/Virgin were preparing the debut album’s global release...
Martha and the Muffins – "Saigon" b/w "Copacabana" (DIN 17)

Martha and the Muffins – “Saigon” b/w “Copacabana” (DIN 17)

“Saigon” b/w “Copacabana” DinDisc Records DIN 17 (UK) Released on April 11, 1980 Produced by Mike Howlett Woe betide the band choosing a follow-up single to “Echo Beach,” the unexpected smash hit for Martha and the Muffins and a commercial breakthrough for their label DinDisc as well. “Saigon” didn’t repeat that success, and the band...
Martha and the Muffins – "Insect Love" b/w "Cheesies and Gum" (DIN 4)

Martha and the Muffins – “Insect Love” b/w “Cheesies and Gum” (DIN 4)

“Insect Love” b/w “Cheesies and Gum” DinDisc Records DIN 4 (UK) Released on November 3, 1979 Produced by Mike Howlett Once more, with feeling: Martha and the Muffins re-recorded “Insect Love” for their first release on DinDisc Records, a boutique label established by Carol Wilson under the Virgin UK umbrella. What a difference a producer...
Martha and the Muffins – “Insect Love” b/w “Suburban Dream” (MM 001)

Martha and the Muffins – “Insect Love” b/w “Suburban Dream” (MM 001)

“Insect Love” b/w “Suburban Dream” Muffin Music MM 001 (Canada) Released in February 1979 Produced by Martha and the Muffins This is a self-released single under the band’s DIY label, Muffin Music. The tracks were taken from a June 1978 demo of five songs (the other three recordings are “Teddy the Dink,” “Trance and Dance,”...
new publications

new publications

I’ve had a couple of articles published in the past month. First, and most relevant to my musical urbanism project, an article about the proto-EU visions traced in the career of Simple Minds, “Sound in 70 Cities: The European Urbanism of Simple Minds,” has been published in a new edited volume: Unsichtbare Landschaften/Invisible Landscapes: Popular...
looking for the new Brooklyn: creative migrations & musical landscapes in upstate New York

looking for the new Brooklyn: creative migrations & musical landscapes in upstate New York

For the Musical Urbanism seminar, Hua Hsu and I were pleased to invite Piotr Orlov to speak about his research on musical legacies and migrations in upstate New York. Here’s the video of our conversation (apologies for the way his mic drops in and out between 7:30-27:00). “Leonard Nevarez and Hua Hsu of Vassar College’s...
art worlds and music scenes

art worlds and music scenes

An interesting thing happens when you intersect two texts, Howard Becker’s essay on “Art Worlds and Collective Activity” (1982) and David Byrne’s essay on “How to Make a Scene” (2012), with each other. Somewhat anachronistically, the former enlists the latter into its thesis. To begin, Becker’s text is not especially directed toward the contemporary interest...
putting the Hudson Valley on the musical map: Basilica Soundscape and O+ Festival

putting the Hudson Valley on the musical map: Basilica Soundscape and O+ Festival

Over the last month I’ve been writing for Sound It Out, a new music blog that covers adventurous new music from a snark-free, consumer-friendly point of view. “The music may be evil, but we’ll try not to be” is the motto. Most of my writings there are basic reviews and previews, but I’ve also contributed...
a history of rave: from the UK to Ultra Miami

a history of rave: from the UK to Ultra Miami

Almost six months since the Ultra Music Festival held its ninth annual event in Miami, an official “aftermovie” was just released two days ago.  It’s so bonkers and over the top in how it depicts the state of the art in rave culture, it calls for a juxtaposition with an earlier moment in rave culture,...
sound in 70 cities: the European urbanism of Simple Minds

sound in 70 cities: the European urbanism of Simple Minds

Dream, dream, dream It’s the eighties’ youthful theme Loving the city A theme for great cities And loved ones And love – “Wonderful In Young Life” (1981)   Americans know them mostly as “that Breakfast Club band” from the 80s, but Scotland’s Simple Minds have carried on in one form or another long enough to...