You know how if you're really bad at hunting, you can go to
one of those places where they just push a captive, tranquilized deer through a
gate, right where your gun is aimed, and all you have to do is pull the trigger?
You might've seen a King of the Hill episode about it once. Going to one of those
places is the hunting equivilent of getting a hooker: it's frowned upon by the non-desperate,
but sometimes you get so tired of nothing that your lust conquers your pride
and you do it anyway.
For episode 7 of DIAL B FOR BIRDER, Thomas and I decided to do
the birding equivilent of that: we went birding at the bird store. The store
was YOUR BASIC BIRD, in the Elmwood neighborhood of Berkeley, CA, and sure
enough there were a ton of birds there. Red birds, green birds, white birds--the
list could go on an on. They were all in cages, but that doesn't mean we didn't
Satisfied, but somewhat guilty, we then decided to take a
stroll around the serene, romantic Berkeley Marina...but I'm not going to tell
you what we saw there, because I, like birds, am coy. Photos after the jump.
Oh hi! How are things? I have a bunch of music to share with you, so let's get to it:
93 Feet of Smoke
Oh man, I am VERY excited to talk about this guy! Easily one of my top 5 favorite artists out right now.
This is the first song I ever heard by him and also a good jumping off point to see how much his music has evolved. The beat features a simple guitar loop over percussion that sounds like it's collapsing in on itself, but the real winner is the vocal effects, which sound completely bonkers. It sounds like he is buried in a coffin and yelling from a megaphone while also being waterboarded.
My first impression of this song was "wow, bad mixing and mastering", but something about this one really gets under my skin, especially the bass guitar plucking @ around the 1:30 mark. What gets me is how the song builds from a simple guitar melody to a wall of noise and I LOVE how expressive his voice is, going from melancholy crooning to distorted screams. 93 has a level of musicality that is 10 steps above your average SoundCloud rapper with crushing drug problems.
Wow I just realized there are like 6 more songs by this guy that I want to share, but let me just end it with this one for now. This is from his latest EP and the atmosphere of this beat is INSANE. If feels like you are bearing witness to the world ending in a very dramatic fashion. I also now know how to properly pronounce "Foyer", which is a big plus. All of his songs are about being a miserable piece of shit drug addict, so I really hope he is doing OK IRL.
Lil Narnia is the answer to the question "how emo can emo rap go?" Turns out, very emo!
Oh man this song is an odd one and took me a long time to wrap my head around. The beat sounds like a downed power line; all jagged hi-hats with almost no low end. Listen for the bass in the beat, it's barely there! The guitars are dope, it sounds like a Deftones B-side that early 2000s teens would cry to. The fact that Lil Narnia looks like a craft beer and weed aficionado but has a high pitched emo voice will probably be the thing that sticks with most people and I too was definitely like 😮 when I first saw this. Major props to you if you can understand more than 20% of the lyrics. Embrace the unintelligibility as part of the aesthetic.
The beat feels like an angel is playing a harp with a drum machine in the clouds for you (I am trying to avoid using the word "ethereal" lol). The chorus of this song is great: "thought we were humans/ but I was wrong/ things in pain is all we are" 😢
A COUPLE LOOSIES
I get a strong New Wave/Post-punk vibe from this song and love how the drums don't come in until the 1:58 mark. Am I veering too far away from rap music at this point? As a former big time metalhead it was always a constant point of contention on the internet about what subgenre a particular artist fell under. Like there would be real human beings who liked death metal, but not black metal and vice versa and they would get in long-winded internet arguments about how their favorite bands should be classified. It feels like this is something people are taking less and less seriously these days and the idea of aligning your personal brand with one particular subgenre of music seems preposterous in 2019. Artists freely meld together whatever music they want nowadays and we are better off because of it. I feel kind of sorry for all the Punk Dads out there still stuck listening to the same 3 albums by the Vandals or whatever 😕
Let's finish with your regular reminder that Bladee is still the greatest rapper out of this niche of music. Again, the atmosphere is key; the downtrodden beat matches Bladee's emotionless autotuned voice perfectly. An essential track for all of the Doomers out there.
OK I have many more songs to share with you, but I will save it for next time! Thank you for reading, friends. Have a nice time out there and stay safe 😊
Thomas is a blogger, birder and sad music enthusiast living in Oakland, CA.
Yeah yeah yeah....hiatus sorry long time do better. What you have to understand, fans, is that it is VERY, VERY COLD in my house. (If you think I can put off blogging or uploading a podcast for a long time, you should see how long I can put off insulating a floor. Especially when it's cold.) My feet are cold and my computer is cold and my typing fingers are cold, and that's my excuse. For this episode of the podcast--"episode 6"--Thomas and I went to an east bay birding location selected by Thomas: "Martin Luther King Jr. Regional Shoreline." The whole 10 minute drive over, Thomas was going on and on about how dope it was gonna be, and how many birds he'd heard were there. "It will be like nothing you've ever seen before," he said at one point. The episode before this one, if you can remember that far back, was the "zero birds, and I get poison oak" episode, so I was really hoping we'd knock it out of the park this time, to get things back on track. Did we knock it out of the park? Will Thomas and I be podcasting more frequently in the future? Will there be photos from our expedition after the jump? Listen right here, or on iTunes or Stitcher, to find out! Expedition photos after the jump.
-Boring Hat of the Month is back! Please follow me so I can amass more followers than my mom,
who is currently beating me by one follower. (I could unfollow her to catch up,
but she posts such good photos!) What gives, Ma? Don't you know you're not
allowed to BEAT YOUR CHILDREN anymore??
-The Buies Creek Astros, a minor league baseball team from
North Carolina, has rebranded themselves as the Fayettville Woodpeckers, in
honor of a beloved local bird known as the red-cockaded woodpecker. The new
name was elected by local residents, who said that they admired the woodpecker
for its looks, tenacity, and baseball-esque affection for BORING.
Nyquil510! The gang from the Nyquil510.tumblr.com comment section missed you.
-No One Dies Forever HQ was attacked by a bear the other night! This is true. It knocked
down the company trash can, ate some of our trash, and then ran off into the
woods to take a shit. He never tried to attack us or anything, but my roommate
was so freaked out by the experience he ran right upstairs to the gun vault and
put all of our honey in it.
-Birders from all over the country have driving
down--"flocking," you might even say--to Los Angeles to catch a glimpse of the red-flanked
bluetail, an extremely rare siberian bird that has mysteriously taken up residence in a
hedge near the William Andrews Clark Memorial Library of UCLA. When asked to comment, the birders told this reporter to "keep it down."