It's been almost two years since the world has been blessed with a new Ghostface full-length, and I'm happy to say that "Fishscale" has managed to meet my incredibly high expectations. At least after the first three listens. Only time will tell if it remains a default selection for years to come, though at this point I anticipate that it will. While I could do without 99% of the skits, as well as the few generic radio friendly hits, there's still so much superior material that the great easily outweighs the bad. All of the Ghostface food groups are represented, from "Pretty Toney"-esque soulgroove shit ("Shakey Dog," "The Champ," "Big Girl"), to "Cuban Linx"-era Raekwon duets ("R.A.G.U.," "Kilo"), to MF Doom-produced surreality ("Underwater"), to nostalgic trips into the past ("Whip You With a Strap"), and last, but not least, "9 Milli Bros.," a Wu-Tang posse cut that rivals anything the group has ever dropped. The only weird thing is that a lot of early reviews I read mentioned the MF Doom collaboration, "Charlie Brown," but that ain't on the copy I have. I downloaded a one-minute sample of it and it sounds amazing. Hopefully the Ghostface/Doom album comes out sooner than later. For now, I have enough to chew on for many months to come. I recommend you start chewing as well.
I'd like to send out a happy sixth birthday to The Oranges Band, who celebrated the anniversary of their very first show by playing the Ottobar Saturday night. It was inspiring and great. Their set is stuffed with hit after hit after hit. Though I could do without the dudes who have been at their past many shows, drunk as shit and slamming into people. Rather than adding energy to the festivities, they put everyone on edge and distract them from enjoying the band on stage. Thankfully, the biggest dipshit got tossed early into the set, so we could all relax and enjoy it.
I went to the doctor tonight, hoping he'd tell me that I had wax in my ears and that was causing the consistently loud ringing. Unfortunately, my ears are fine. At least wax-wise. It was that fucking Early Man show at The Mercury Lounge last winter. Though I'm sure SXSW didn't help last week. Living in NYC, I was never in a state of absolute silence, so the ringing wasn't as noticeable, but now that I live in Nowhereville, when I turn out the lights and try to go to sleep, it's like Kenneth turned the frequency up to eleven.
I watched PRIDE AND PREJUDICE last night, which totally blew me away. I must confess, I've never read it, nor have I seen any prior adaptations. But from the very first shot, I knew I was in good hands. A really stellar achievement. I hope to capture some of that love sparkle magic in DAYDREAM.
Speaking of DAYDREAM, I also finally watched Ben Younger's PRIME, which is like a Hollywoodized take on what I want to do with my own personal cinematic love letter to NYC. I liked it fine, but I still think it was too much of a "movie." That said, it definitely helped to steer me away from romantic comedy conventions, such as the 'best friend' who is there for comic relief and other stuff like that. At first I was a little disheartened by the superficial similarities, but by the end I had become even more jacked to get DAYDREAM up and running. Which will happen soon enough.
As for March Madness, there really isn't much to say except W-O-W. I would have bet both of my legs that UConn was going to win that game. That shit simply does not happen. But it does. Which only reaffirms my belief that March Madness is one of the most magical and lovely creations in life. Go GMU! I do hate the thought of having to watch UCLA play again. Ben Howland seems like a great guy, but watching his teams play (I felt the same way with Pitt) is like doing a term paper on the most boring topic ever. I'm also still pissed that they beat Gonzaga, so I have two reasons to root for LSU.
At least the Lady Terps are in the Final Four, I suppose...