The Joup Friday Album: Fever Ray

Fever Ray DebutIt’s been a bit. A lot of us at the Joup staff took a bit off around the Holidays, something I don’t normally do, however my holiday spirit has miraculously been rekindled over the previous two months. All that’s come and gone now though; I ended up spending the somersault into 2018 in Chicago, called home for a funeral. I haven’t been back for a winter since I moved, going on twelve years ago, and it was a bit of an eye-opener to walk into 0, -1 and -2 degree temperatures, bolstered by a windchill factor that was often double digits below zero; as if the passing of my wonderful Uncle Phil wasn’t terrible enough. Something about all of it hit me in a strangely creative way, and I returned to a rainy LaLaLand with a hankering for dark, brooding electronic music.

Shawn’s Favorite Albums of 2017

Screen Shot 2017-12-31 at 5.46.43 PM2017 – not a bad year when compared to the virtual pop Armageddon of 2016. Still, as with any year, 2017 had a lot of ups and downs, most of which can be traced to the further deterioration of the civil fabric of our society, which in turn is largely due to A) the continued proliferation of narcissism and the selfishness it breeds and B) wacko celebrities in charge of big, important idea masses, like say entire countries. So while I’ve taken the irresponsible course of ignoring world events as much as possible, my inner space thrived in 2017. I’ll be publishing some stuff next year, and I had the long-awaited return of my most beloved of stories. And it did not disappoint. Accordingly, the list of my ten favorite albums of 2017 represents the albums that shaped me while writing, while watching and while working.

The Joup Friday Album: Nektar – Remember the Future

nektar remember-the-futureThis edition of the Joup Friday Album is going to be short and sweet because I am sick as f&$k and want nothing more than to hop back into my bed and go back to catching up on about three months of comics (four in some cases) that I’ve been too busy to read since, well, since about three or four months ago.

The Joup Friday Album: The Afghan Whigs – In Spades

In SpadesI’m going to keep this short because I’m actually off to Hollywood in a little bit to see The Afghan Whigs on the tour for 2017’s brilliant In Spades. Now, being as there’s a fairly wide rotation of writers for this column, I’m fairly certain this is the only chance I’ll get to do a post before Halloween, and I wanted to do something in keeping with that theme, but the Whigs have been in heavy rotation as pre-concert build-up so I had a bit of a tug-of-war. Then I realized I could write about In Spades and kill two birds with one stone: Whereas I would not normally lump the Whig’s Motown soul by way of hard rock in with my traditional Halloween sonic faire, In Spades is a bit different. This is a creepy record; maybe not all the way through, but most of it. Look at the cover art. Look at the song titles: The Spell, Demon in Profile, Copernicus, The Spell. Hell, look at the video for second single Oriole. Dark, occult and saturated in creepy imagery. Does that girl eat that tarantula? I DON’T WANT TO KNOW! Love that video though. Main man Greg Duli had always had one foot in superstition (Roll the Bones?) but on this latest effort he uses it and perhaps more effectively the imagery of the Occult to create a great rock album that seethes with a dangerous, ritualistic tone that fits the Whigs and their “Shot on Location”, cinematic aesthetic. Crack open a beer, roll a J and sit back and let Duli and Co. usher in a chilly Friday night halfway to our favorite time of the year. Meanwhile, I’ll be witnessing the band in the flesh.

The Joup Friday Album: Twin Peaks Season 2 OST

00 Twin Peaks Season Two (And More)At 12:41 AM LA time I’m really pushing the definition of the “Friday Album” but what the hell, Friday is a day meant to be lived long into the wee hours, so here’s a great way to wind into the small hours…

The Joup Friday Album: The Pixies – Doolittle

doolittleBeen away for a bit. Good to be back. In case you haven’t guessed from my stilted tone I’ve been drinking… and due to my trying like crazy to A) work 9 hours B) commute 2 C) edit my Twin Peaks Festival Video and D) drive to a friend’s to film a new Genesis of Preacher I’m also tired, so the 5 Downtown Browns I’ve consumed over the past 4 hours hit me like a fucking hammer and I’m realizing I volunteered to defib the Joup Friday Album at like 2 hours and 42 minutes (and counting) into Saturday. But I believe in this column, just like I believe in Mr. Grieves.

The Joup Friday Album: Julee Cruise – Floating into the Night

Floating into the NightIf there’s an album title more evocative of Twin Peaks – I mean other than the soundtracks that bear the town’s name – I’ve not found it. Especially I feel a strong thread between this album and the second half of the original pilot episode of the show, where half of the teenage cast runs around in the night with various secretive agendas, starting fights, burying secrets and forgetting to put air in their sister’s bicycle tires. I was a teenager myself when I saw that and first experienced Cruise’s music through David Lynch’s lens, and it shaped me in a way that a lot of the times I’m out in the night with a debaucherous agenda at hand -with admittedly is not very often anymore – echoes of this album provide my interior soundtrack.

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