The King of Limbs
On Friday, we managed to successfully release to pre-press the final pieces of our July 2011 issue; and it was only three weeks ago that we finished shipping our June issue. On top of the pressure of such a short production cycle, we also felt the effects of attending, over the course of just two weeks, both the Salon Son et Image in Montreal and Axpona in Atlanta. It’s been a busy and exhausting month. On the positive side, it seems that the economy is taking a turn for the better. We see this in the sudden spring of hi-fi shows, but also in the increasing size of our print issues: 140 pages for May 2011 vs 116 for May 2010; 156 pages for June 2011 vs 132 for June 2010; 140 pages for July 2011 vs 124 for July 2010.
These trends, it seems, will continue. I leave for the Munich High End Show next Thursday. That same day, John Atkinson travels to sunny California for a meeting with the Los Angeles and Orange County Audio Society and then on to Denver for a series of “Music Matters” events sponsored by Colorado hi-fi dealer, ListenUp. Right around the time that John and I get back to New York, we’re scheduled to begin releasing our August issue to pre-press. Somewhere in there, I’ll have to find the time to actually write my August issue column, which was due today.
Meanwhile, I do try to make time for friends and family. On Saturday, we celebrated Natalie’s birthday. We brought the party to our favorite local bar, Lucky 7, and Natalie had arranged for me to provide the night’s music. Of course, I worried like mad about this for days. Aside from a recent gathering at Natalie and Nicole’s apartment (which I hope you’ll read about in our June issue), I hadn’t really DJ’ed since college and I’d never DJ’ed in a bar. I was afraid that the evening would turn into some sort of bad parody of High Fidelity, starring me. To avoid embarrassment, I bought tons of new dance music, created playlists peppered with Bands that Girls Like (LCD Soundsystem, Cut/Copy, MGMT, Blur, Pulp), made detailed notes, whined to friends and colleagues, had nightmares. In the end, and as usual, all of my planning was unnecessary: The circumstances of the evening were far beyond my control and nothing happened exactly as I had anticipated, but it all worked out just fine: Girls danced, I drank for free, people gave me lots of attention, it felt like it was my birthday.
Sunday, of course, was Mother’s Day.
My mother loves it when I show up at her house exhausted and hungover.
I feel like I haven’t had much downtime lately.
Music has been better than ever. I’ve had to rearrange my listening room, again, in order to accommodate all the new vinyl. Many of my most recent purchases remain unplayed, but I hope to get around to listening to them, enjoying them, and writing about some soon. As I write to you now, I’m listening to the 85-song playlist I had created for Natalie. Currently playing is “Lotus Flower” from Radiohead’s new one, The King of Limbs, an album that is growing and growing and growing on me. Its songs are sort of vague and meandering, but, with several plays, they’ve managed to seep into my psyche and plant themselves like spring. Before that was “Goodbye Horses” by Q Lazzarus, one of Natalie’s favorites.
And now it’s time for lunch.