Come On, Comedown

2013TheStrokesPA-3734757210113Y’all muffins know how much I love The Strokes. I’m pretty sure that at one point I credited them for “saving me,” so they’re a pretty deep part of my life. Also I would like to marry all of them. Specifically Julian, but I’ll take Fabrizio any day of the week (except Sunday, that’s for Jesus).

Their sound has always been intense. Julian’s voice is deep and sometimes very dark, and I love that. Its full of feeling, and these days that can be hard to find. That anger and depth got me through high school, and I’ve swooned more than once to it… I don’t know if anyone else has felt this way or if I’m just nuts, but The Strokes make me feel so good I start to feel bad. So much amazing is happening in their music that I feel nauseated and want to throw up…so yeah I’m probably just nuts.

That all being said, what the hell, guys. Their 5th album, Comedown Machine, came out today (last night on iTunes) and I peed my pants in excitement and listened to it in bed and…I was initially severely disappointed. I still can’t completely decide how I feel.

Here’s an awesome question that really needs to be asked, as loudly and angrily as possible: “What’s with the falsetto, Jules?!” I liked your growl before. It was real, it was different, it was rock and roll. It was sex in music form, for more reasons than one. This falsetto sounds like every emerging band’s sound, and I don’t need to listen to another grown man sing like a lady.

I liked Julian’s solo album, Phrazes for the Young, and it had a lot of ’80s going on in it, but it was the loud ’80s, not this marimba-y, potentially sleep inducing ’80s shit that’s going on in songs like Slow Animals and Chances. It’s good if you want an album that’s “perfect for spring!” (as every magazine has said about Katy Perry’s “summertime” hits), but I remember a time when The Strokes were suitable for every moment of every day, all year long.

Why, then, is Jules singing about finding a dog and settling down, when at one point he was singing about getting 40s and getting screwed up? I understand “evolution and change” is necessary, but please don’t buy a house in suburbia. Either way, One Way Trigger is so disjointed that the lyrics are the least of its problems…whaaat is happening?

I’m okay with Tap Out, and All the Time is my favorite of the album (give me more of that!), but…I can’t handle Call It Fate, Call It Karma. If this is their last album, I will be severely disappointed and might personally demand another. I will find you, guys, and I will make you be a rock band again. Angles was pushing it, though I learned to love that sound, but…give me something to freak out to. Give me something to fall in love with, the way I fell in love with Is This It.

Give me something with a little life in it.


Jules Makes Me Stupid

You know those people who turn you into a school girl with a crush? And make you giggle and sigh and stuff? And then, apparently, make you blog about them like an idiot?

Julian Casablancas gives me that. And it’s kind of a problem.

I know, I know, I’ve written like 7 (more like 2…) posts about him and his faaaaaace…but I’m hardcore stupid right now. And usually when I write stuff it isn’t quite this obnoxious or silly…I like to think I’m at least a little sophisticated. But Julian turns me into a Beatles fangirl and I want to tell y’all about it.

Let me make the internet my diary.

Dear Diary,
I love Jules. Laike, soooo much. He is so dreamy and delicious, like a Spanish waffle, because those exist. He is a hunky fudge sundae and I JUST WANT TO TALK ABOUT IT!
I know he was basically a raging alcoholic and fell over on stage a couple times because of that, but maybe I like my boys to be baaad. Maybe I think alcoholism is sexy (or, you know, maybe I don’t, because it isn’t…) Maybe I like when boys are rockstars (because who doesn’t). Maybe I enjoy a good red skinny jean on a fella. Maybe I’d just like to be his wife and stuff…

Just let it happen. Just embrace it, world. Just do it. Nike told me I’m allowed to date Julian Casablancas in my head.

Anyway, I got the squiggly wigglies in my tummy and wanted to talk about it.



PS Oh. And his music moves my soul. Or something…

Those Imperfections

I like listening to records. My generation, for the most part, has missed out on this simple pleasure. There’s just something so amazing about putting the record on the player, moving the needle over it, flipping the switch…hearing the imperfections of those old records. After a while, you memorize the exact placement of each scratch, you know just when the guitar solo will go out for a moment and then surge back on, the product of a tiny scratch or mark.

It’s surprising that a person like me, who likes organization and perfection and who strives so much to be perfect that it’s becoming a problem, loves those little imperfections in life. I hate when things don’t go the way I plan, so why do I love when my music gets all fuzzy and screwed up and dust gets on my record needle and makes George Harrison’s voice go all wonky? Why do I cling to the scratch on my Julian Casablancas CD that causes a skip?

I didn’t know where I was going with this post, didn’t know the answer to any of these questions, until I wrote that last sentence. Those imperfections have become predictable for me. The records in my dad’s cabinet have been there my entire life. I grew up with them. I know that they’re old, so I know that they’ll be a little fuzzy, a little scratched. I take comfort in that. I take comfort in knowing exactly where Julian’s voice will skip out in “Out of the Blue.” Those imperfections that I think I love…they’re totally predictable, and in that sense they’re perfect. So maybe I don’t love imperfection as much as I thought I did ten minutes ago. But I do know this: I will always love fuzzy records and scratched CDs.

And for a while, you could comfort me and hold me for some time. I need you now to be beside me while all my world is so untidy. – George Harrison.

коты, kočka, kaķis, חתול, and кот

Here are some recent Google searches that brought people to my blog:

коты, kočka, kaķis, חתול, and кот – Those were all separate searches, which is disconcerting since I don’t know what any of those words mean and therefore don’t understand how Google directed them here. But uhhh…mazel tov?

we love each other like we love food – That’s a lot of love. Because if you’re anything like me, you love food A LOT. Sometimes I think maybe I don’t have enough love left over to love anyone, since I love food so much. It fills up my love quota every day.

i really like you – Oh, thank you! I really like you too, even though I don’t know you at all. But I probably like you. Unless you’re a creep, in which case you should leave me alone, please.

etequate of life – Part of the etiquette of life is proper spelling. So you failed. Sorry.

dancing like your having sex – I’m sorry, but first of all, you used the wrong you’re. It’s dancing like YOU’RE having sex. Second, I think I specifically told you not to do that. It’s icky. What would Jesus say? You know, if he weren’t dead and everything.

my wife beats me – This has happened before. I’m seriously worried about the well-being of my readers. Seek help, sir, as domestic abuse is a serious issue!

how to dress like a stud muffin for Halloween – I don’t think I can help you there. Maybe just go naked?

what are people who hang around bikers who don’t have bikes – Not bikers. They’re called not bikers. And they’re also losers because biking is awesome and they should join in on the rollicking fun times. Unless you mean bikers as in motorcyclists, in which case whatever cuz I don’t like motorcycles.

hello my name is gabby – Hi Gabby. I’m Cappy. How are you? Oh, and also, why would you introduce yourself to Google?

julian casablancas cool? – That is NOT a question. He is. He IS. Mmm.

cat – I love cats. I LOVE CATS!

things you could say to creep the love of your life out – Basically, just quote any sentence from this blog. You’re welcome.

i’m so smooth with the girls – Oh, are you now, Tarim? I’m assuming you’re called that or some other Middle Eastern name, but I really don’t know, and now I feel like maybe I’m being racist. OH NO! I’m sorry :(

writers block pregnancy – At the rate I’m going, I will never be pregnant, so I can’t help you there.

kiss without touching – Ehhh, I don’t think you can do that. Unless it’s like, this crazy existential touching and you’re a zen buddhist or something, in which case GOOD ON YOU, cuz that’s pretty awesome. Congratulations.

what kind of school do you need for rocket scientist – A whole bunch. If you need to ask, you’re probably not cut out for it. Also, it’s “schooling,” not “school.” Man, I sound uptight today. Grammar Nazi alert.

i like a girl who isn’t lesbian but im also a girl – I’m sorry. That’s probably super hard. You should’ve sent this in to my agony aunt post or something! Way to pay attention, jeeeez. You should probably move on, cuz I don’t know if this chick’s gonna be into you if she’s straight.

who writes the borovkoff blog? – That is a question I do not have the answer to. I’m sorry. But probably a Russian man…

Dear World,

Dear World,

If you wouldn’t mind, I’d like you to fix a few things.

First, make old people stop asking me what I’m planning on doing with my life. Even though I know (I think) that I’ll write forever…unless I become a rocket scientist…it’s difficult to explain that yes, I plan on writing a novel and yes, I understand that it’s hard and yes, I am prepared to be poor-ish for a while. And no, I didn’t know that back in your day writers had to make pens out of needles and ink out of their blood. But thank you.

Second, if you would be so kind, I’d like people to stop being such jerks about being nice. I am 99% sure that humans are inherently good, so I would like you to make people stop being mean and angry. When I am nice to people, maybe they could be nice back…

Can rappers and singers please stop saying their names before they start rapping/singing? I don’t entirely understand the purpose of that…is it so I won’t forget who’s singing the song halfway through? Or maybe they forgot who they were and had to remind themselves. That’s what night after night of partying can do to you. It’s a hard life for those people.
Regardless, I don’t care whether it’s Jayysoooooon Derulo or LUDA! singing because either way I’ll probably dislike the song.

Also, maybe everyone could shut up vis a vis raising taxes. I don’t think people understand what taxes are for: they are to keep our country from debt. So, if you are rich, shut the heck up and pay some bloody taxes instead of taking that third trip to the Bahamas. And if you’re that upset about taxes being raised, maybe you shouldn’t have supported the 18 (ish) wars we are currently fighting. At this point, you could have paid all your taxes and saved a few third world countries from poverty.

And if Sarah Palin utters one more word of her nonsense, I’m flyin’ straight up to ‘Laska and givin’ her a piece of my mind. And then I’ll go hunt some moose. In a red jacket. I promise, it’ll look just like the cover of her first book (and a Lands’ End catalog). Or maybe I’ll ask her to read an exerpt from her book, which is apparently on “Faith, Freedom, and Flag” and try not to vomit until I’m home.

Also, I have two words for you: Christmas lights. Why must they get so tangled? And why must my cat try to eat them?

Can we make British the universal language? Cuz the way they say “party” makes me feel giddy. While we’re on the subject of feeling giddy, can I 1) marry Julian Casablancas and 2) have Enrique Iglesias follow me around and make those really nice sing-moan-squeal thingybopper sounds in my ear? No? Oh. Okay. Nevermind then.

Phrazes for the Young Album Review

   The Strokes’ front man Julian Casablancas released his debut solo album, “Phrazes for the Young” on November 2, 2009. The album’s lyrics focus on post-apocalyptic motifs, while its uncommon blend of electronic synth-pop, rock and blues gives it a unique and futuristic quality. “Phrazes” is definitely worth listening to on repeat.

   Though The Strokes are still together, each member has gone on to either release a solo album or work with other bands. They have not released an album since their third, “First Impressions of Earth,” which was met with lukewarm reviews in 2006. The band is currently working together on an album which is scheduled to release in March.

   Casablancas is known for his unique vocals, which are reminiscent of both Lou Reed and Jim Morrison. His angry croon, though a seeming contradiction, helped set him apart from other singers when The Strokes first became popular in the early 2000s. Throughout “Phrazes,” Casablancas ranges from snarling disillusionment in “Out of the Blue” to controlled chaos in “River of Brakelights” to beautiful nostalgia in “Tourist.”

   While Casablancas is mellower (he no longer throws microphone stands during performances) than he ever was in the heavy days of The Strokes, his music continues their tortured tradition. He still sings about drinking in “Ludlow St.” (he recently recovered from an alcohol addiction) and a feeling of angry loneliness permeates “Out of the Blue.” One of the iTunes-extra songs, “30 Minute Boyfriend,” with its semi-terrifying declaration of love, is reminiscent of The Strokes’ “Heart in a Cage.”

   The singer throws in smatterings of angry wisdom throughout the album. In the epic sounding “River of Brakelights,” he sing-screams, “Like batteries we die, like rivers we dry. Refuel and recharge, that’s humans and cars.” In “Out of the Blue,” he sings that “when roles are reversed, opinions are too.” Casablancas proves throughout “Phrazes” that he is fully capable of delivering songs that are both catchy and thought-provoking.

   Casablancas’ debut album may be more pleasing to non-Strokes fans, as it is more varied and moves away from the garage-rock that The Strokes were so popular for years ago. The last track, “Tourist,” which simultaneously makes you want to dance and cry, features an inexplicably melancholy and slow Spanish-style guitar loop. “11th Dimension,” the album’s single, is an 80s-esque pop song, while “4 Chords of the Apocalypse” is a bluesy tune that is just waiting to be played over a breakup scene in a chick-flick.

   Casablancas proves his songwriting and vocal ability in this debut solo album. Though it moves away from The Strokes’ work, “Phrazes for the Young” will please both Strokes fans and the casual listener.

How to Be a Musician

1. Live by one rule and one rule alone: Guitar should not sound melodic. There shouldn’t be any real chords like in Beatles or Stones songs, just really scary and loud guitar riffs. And solos shouldn’t have anything to do with the tune of the song but should instead show off your ability to play random notes really fast.

2. Okay, there are actually two rules…the second involves a lot of leather.

1. Constantly show off your vocal range; this is especially important if you’re singing the national anthem. Hit as many high notes as you can, but make sure you immediately follow them with low notes. Then jump back to high, make your voice quiver a little, and make the ugliest face you can. Point your hand up to the sky, hitting your final note, and…finish.

2. Wear as much lip gloss as you can possibly apply to your lips without them falling off.

Grunge dude:
1. Blow all your money on cocaine. Mmmm, nothing’s better than druggie arms.

Hint: it's him.

2. Blow the little money you have left on flannel shirts. You’re not allowed to wear anything (reapeat: anything) other than flannel shirts. Okay, you can wear pants. Flannel pants, preferrably…yeah that’s a lie.

Julian Casablancas:
1. Look really amazing all the time.

2. Write really great music.

3. Sing me to sleep every night.

…10 points to anyone who can figure out who my favorite singer is.

Why I Will Always Love Julian Casablancas

For those of you who don’t know (why don’t you know? Why?), Julian Casablancas is the lead singer of The Strokes. They are great.

1. His voice is like…well, for lack of a better word, his voice is like sex. On the phone. Phone sex. Except way less creepy and dirty and wrong.
OKAY, his voice is just really great and makes me drool and stuff. GOSH.
Speaking of his voice, I always wondered why such a small man could have such a deep singing voice. Until I found out he isn’t small, he’s like 6’2″. Oops, sorry, Jules. Can I call you that? Jules?  

2. He wears red pants all the time. Well, not all the time and certainly (hopefully) they’re not always the same pair of red pants, but they’re red pants all the same and I admire that. I have a pair of red pants. SOULMATES! Am I right?

3. He writes amazing songs. His new (released in late 2009, but new to me since I just heard about it a week ago…) album, Phrazes for the Young, is really good. So good, in fact, that I can’t pick a favorite song from that album because I like them so much. But if I had to, it’d be River of Brakelights. Or maybe Out of the Blue. …I dunno.

4. The Strokes kept me sane my freshman year of high school. I probably would’ve gone completely crazy and went into self-destruct mode if they hadn’t been blasting through my stereo with their controlled chaos and lyrics that made me sing at the top of my lungs. I owe a lot of myself to them.

5. He guested with The Lonely Island, who by the way are hilarious, in the song Boombox. It makes me sing. It makes me dance. It makes me drool because Julian Casablancas (Jules. Umm, can I call you that?) is so COOL in the video. Be aware that the end of that video gets kinda creepy…it’s not for the faint of heart.

6. As stated above, he looks cool. He acts cool. He is cool. Have you seen the feather in his hair? Cool. The colored strips in his hair? Cool. (I do that sometimes too, Jules. Can I call you that?) Leather jacket! Cool! The afformentioned red pants, also cool. Sunglasses, cool. The way he moves when he sings. Cool. Overall facial appearance, cool.

…Cool, Jules. Can I call you that?