Thursday, December 13, 2012

Mellowed Out Techno

Really feeling this music. So glad I stumbled upon this fella while I head into a day of non-stop studying. Other than to feed the necessities I experience as a human (geekiest way of saying other than when i'm a hungry, hungry hippo! - yes, I speak as if I'm a kindergarden teacher).

Ladies and gentleman, the aching, crooning, and damn smooth Chet Faker. His voice is laced with heart break, and each of his tracks falls into this mellowed out electronic vibe that I can't get enough of.

Become a little bit cooler by being in the presence of his musical godliness.

Chet was elaborating on what drove his inspiration in an interview for, well this is perfect, Interview Magazine, and he mentioned that it was a medley of his parents' taste in music. If that were true for me, I'd be listening to a Leonard Cohen and Bruce Springsteen combo. Don't know how well that'd work out for me. The snippet of the interview is here:

WHEN MOTOWN MEETS MINIMALIST HOUSE MUSIC: I was lucky, my parents had really different tastes in music. My mum was listening to a lot of Motown. I think the most played record in our house was the Big Chill Soundtrack—so Smokey Robinson, Aretha Franklin, the Temptations, Otis Redding. I think that's where I got my love for a good hook, a good soul hook—really smooth and warm and from the heart. And then my dad would listen to the chilled out Ibiza CDs; all that super down tempo female vocal kind of stuff. It's like my parents' musical tastes are the mother and father of my music. [laughs] It's their fault for making me so emotional and in tune with my emotions!
Chet actually calls his name an ode to Chet Baker,

He had this really fragile vocal style—this really, broken, close-up and intimate style. The name is kind of just an ode to Chet Baker and the mood of music he used to play—something I would like to at least attempt to play homage to in my own music.  
Ya did good, Chet. Ya did good. Here's the fellow he's talking about. Lots of soul.

And on a side note, before I embark on my glorious studies, I have a three line story to tell you.

'Twas not Christmas Eve, but the eve of exam week, and young men and women alike were gathered round a gingerbread house. I envisioned windows trimmed with icing and gum drops galore, and I shouted out with glee, "Let us create a rustic house, for our gingerbread family!"

...two young men from across the room greet my idea with blank, soulless faces: "What is rustic?"


I shall elaborate on the beauty of rustic homes in my next post. But first, studying (sorry, my textbooks are gettin' their bitch face on).

Friday, December 7, 2012

Where I Would Like to be Studying Right Now

Exams are burying young men and women around the world. Frantic, dazed, sleepless youth are wandering in and out of libraries, coffee shops, basements of their dorms.

I am one of them.

*insert dramatic music*

And now, on my study breaks, my eyes have become trained to focus in on books or computers or desks or anything else in resemblance of my setting of the last few days. Some of my favourites.

(This is really all just an excuse to show books in rooms looking adorable.)

For some reason, I always associate a fashion editor or photographer dwelling in this room. Most likely in some dramatically upscale outfit in bursts of colour, casually flipping through a magazine, or running her fingers down the spines of the impressively monochromatic book collection.

Ah, it's a dangerous ting indeed to have two vintage suitcases right in view whilst studying.
1. I would muse about couples eloping in the fifties, rebelling against society with the thrill of adventure fuelling their journey.
2. I would dream about flying home in a creamy trenchcoat and robin's egg blue oxford shoes to match my trunk.
3. Well, I would literally leave.

(Blood and Champagne, aka the sweetest site I have found in a very long time)

Scrolling down past this image made my eyes widen like I just saw Santa Claus. That wood, is gorgeous. It reminds me of caramel macchiatos and Christmas fireplaces. And at the same time, I love how mysterious I would appear to any guests if they asked what I kept in there and I would simply reply, "I can't go into that right now." 

I like to think of myself as quite the enigma, as you can see (this may or may not be true, most likely not).

The good ol' days. It's weird to me that I can actually say that without it being laughably near to my age now. Reminds me of when I was nine or so and said, "Well I remember when I was young..." and the small party of adults near me roared with laughter to my sincere confusion.

DAMN STRAIGHT, do I enjoy this office or what. If I walked into this office, I would immediately expect to be meeting with someone with a hell of a lotta swag and I may not want to leave their presence in the hopes of sneaking some. Or at the very least attempt to steal one of those sweet ceramic white legs to place, very randomly, into my dorm. 


Wednesday, December 5, 2012

A Moment

Can we also stop for a moment and declare our mutual longing for this adorable little fellow to be gracing the countertops of kitchens universally wide? Yes. Thank you for that moment of silence in awe of his charm.


Sunday, December 2, 2012

Starry Lights

It's always interesting to me to see how people embrace the holidays. Some opt for the minimalist decor, a star here and there, christmas lights strewn across a table, maybe a single reindeer proudly standing next to the salt and pepper shakers. Others take these 25 days as something of a challenge to channel as much Christmas spirit into their home as possible. The whole tribe of Santa's reindeers dangling from a chandelier, cookie jars with a smitten elf tempting you to reach in and grab one of grandma's freshly baked shortbread cookies, a wreath dominating their door, a toy store of plush creatures from Santa Claus' team suddenly occupying every seat in the house.

Whether you're on one end of the spectrum or contentedly in the middle, I can't deny how happy it makes me to see elves as a socially accepted addition to everyone's home. 

The naturalistic decorator keeps things simple with the elegance of frosted pinecones and lacey stars sprinkled across their home. Candles are a welcome addition as well, but not too many, as their house is most likely built off of an abundance of wood.

The "christmas-all-year" decorator never quite lets go of the cheer and jolly spirits that pervade homes during December. She prefers to keep the cranberry accents and twinkling christmas balls as a reminder of the importance of generosity, and very well may end up tricking children and adults alike that she is in fact related to Santa Claus.

The starry light decorator keeps much of her home the same, but adds an absolutely whimsical effect in the form of lights dangling from anywhere she can manage to find an outlet. Suddenly her whole house is draped with the milky way and her feet become ever so lighter.

Ah, the eclectic decorator. The perfect home for entertaining as the combination of vintage St. Nicholas postcards, delicate strings of golden lights, and the seemingly never ending glasses of wine contribute to quite the party. 

The naturalistic decorator's sister is more adept to adding in the touches of the outside wintery world with quite the luxurious pieces as well. She considers herself the Narnia decorator, where a tree stump is balanced with a minimalistic stool, and collected tree branches are in juxtaposition with white cylindrical spot lights. It's like the forest if it were dominated by elegant paintings and brilliant lights.

Oh the gift wrapping artist comes out to play in this month of giving. She fully immerses herself in the art that comes with gift presentation, seeing with delight the looks of her impressed friends as they examine her work. If you walked through this lady's home it would be marked by subtle presents peaking next to dolled up mirrors, and beneath hand-sewn Christmas stockings. 

The Scandinavian decorator! Oh you know my soft spot for Scandinavian style. Homes covered head to toe in a milky white, with feminine accents here and there, whimsical paintings, and when Christmas comes around? A collection of particularly warm strings of lights and storybook frosted trees popping up on miniature pianos. So endearing.

Lanterns really aren't reserved for Halloween. They add such a fairy like element to any home, reminiscent of twilight picnics and starry nights. 

Now I really frickin' wish I wasn't in a dorm. Challenge? Deck out my dorm in Christmas swag? I could accept that. 


Thursday, November 29, 2012

The Christmas Frenzy

Easily one of my favourite things about Christmas season, aside from the cranberry red Starbucks cups peeking out behind mitten wearing hands, and the velvety voice of Michael Bublé crooning away during almost every hour of the day, is the sudden reappearance of the most loveable and dainty creatures of winter folk tales - reindeer.

And, at least where I'm from, I rarely get to see deer. They've become something of a mystery to me. So magical in their presence! So it's only suiting they come out to play during Christmas.

ABC House & Home

Four Babbitt kids.

I want you all in my home immediately. 


Friday, November 9, 2012

When The Beating Stops

It sags, this fleshy mass,
Lurching and gulping and gasping,
Vile, needy thing - pity feeds you.
You say you're deprived.
You tell me you're dying.

But then you cradle my bones,
And just like that, leave me

Now it's my turn,
Lurching and gulping and gasping,
Sagging under this fleshy mass.

And I say to you,
I'm deprived.
I'm dying.

But you keep beating
This blood through dusty halls
And you sink,
To the bottom of my toes,
When it floods back
This time seeping into your chamber.
It wants to swallow you, I say,
Once and for all.

Oh do not weep,
Wait, no, I didn't mean
Come back, come back.

I'll save you one day,
When I am nothing but bones
And flesh and heart
And I greet the ground
Cold and still, I'll save you

Because now the current
And suddenly, just like that,
We're on the same side.

Hush now, hush.
We are still. We are one.
Just sleep.

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Serious Drawings for a Serious Life

Because no one is fine and dandy all the time. Take a break with some serious humour.

This humour is so dry, my lips are chapping. Hyuk, hyuk, hyuk. I always wonder how some people form their styles, too. Like how did Marc come up with these faces that fit the message he's trying to convey so perfectly? The spread out eyes, minimal detail, those somber, unamused expressions... was this the result of a doodling day gone awesome? As if he was just chilling on the bus, or vaguely staring at his paper in front of him in class and suddenly these faces appeared before him? Either way, I am a fan.

Whimsically dry.
Those are two words that aren't next to each other nearly enough.

Marc Johns, everybody! Give him the slow clap. A serious, slow clap.

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Zombie Territory

Yes, I admit, I have ventured into the life of the living dead these past couple weeks. Masses of work have appeared out of nowhere. First, its presence was that of a fruit fly. If I kept waving it away, all was well, but it would inevitably come back to the sweet scent of my procrastination. Then, this fly transformed into a fucking monster. It creeped up behind me and just ate me in one bite, leaving me whimpering and passively fighting it with no use.

Me, in kitten form, just peeking over to freedom. Because everything is much more pleasant in kitten form, obviously.

And now that I have crawled out of zombie territory (hopefully), here is a quote to enjoy. Not at all angsty like the excessive amount of egocentric teenage girls crowding around on tumblr (not that I have tumblr or anything...).

It's something I need to remember. Fate is not a fact. Everything did not necessarily happen for a reason. I just sometimes like to think so, because more than anything that notion is comforting.
Your life is not an episode of Skins. Things will never look quite as good as they do in a faded, sun - drenched Polaroid; your days are not an editorial from Lula. Your life is not a Sofia Coppola movie, or a Chuck Palahniuk novel, or a Charles Bukowski poem. Grace Coddington isn't your creative director. Bon Iver and Joy Division don't play softly in the background at appropriate moments. Your hysterical teenage diary isn't a work of art. Your room probably isn't Selby material. Your life isn't a Tumblr screencap. Every word that comes out of your mouth will not be beautiful and poignant, infinitely quotable.Your pain will not be pretty. Crying till you vomit is always shit. 
You cannot romanticize hurt. 
Or sadness. 
Or loneliness. 
You will have homework, and hangovers and bad hair days. The train being late won't lead to any fateful encounters, it will make you late. Sometimes your work will suck. Sometimes you will suck. Far too often, everything will suck - and not in a Wes Anderson kind of way.And there is no divine consolation - only the knowledge that we will hopefully experience the full spectrum - and that sometimes, just sometimes, life will feel like a Coppola film. 

And with that, I bid you adieu.

ps. whyamistilluphowamigoingtogetupdamnyouinternet (bonus points for understanding this) 

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Mind = Blown

Every now and then I'm really glad I have a book of faces (facebook) because you can come across some damn nifty things. Of course, it's relatively akin to shopping at a dingy thrift store. Most of the articles you see, you may question humanity as to why they were ever even created in the first place, like a turtle neck with a bunny silhouette cut out to show bare skin on the neck (or in terms of dear facebook, cue dramatically passive agressive statuses about a boy, potentially in poetry, or perhaps a mobile upload with the caption, "Hard day," and a girl with immaculately straightened hair in front of a mirror putting on a sad face). Then, out of nowhere, comes a reason as to why you went there in the first place. An absolute treasure has been revealed.

Now I've always been fascinated by how our mind can play tricks on us with music and headphones in. As in when a cello is playing on what seems like one side of your brain, and then Adele is belting it out on the other. I can vividly see some casual cellist sitting on a miniature chair atop my gross looking brain, knowingly smiling at Adele.

So, enough of my rambling and to the point, do you fancy a virtual haircut? Have you been looking in the mirror and thinking, "What happened, when did I become Hagrid?" This is for you. And even if you've looked in the mirror and thought, "Holy crap, gotta take this sexuality down a notch," still listen because, shhh, you don't actually get a hair cut.

With a cherry on top.

Monday, October 15, 2012

iPhone Five Set to Take Over World

Typical apple fanboy, pshaw.

Dear iPhone 5 Hype,

            I’m speaking on behalf of all of those who don’t live under a rock and are held subject to the absurdly frantic hype over what is called the iPhone 5. Apple fanboys have been lighting up cyberspace with mock trailers for months, spurring intensified critique of the current iPhone 4S, and spending 98.7% of their time dreaming around their new life which will be so radically changed with this new phone.

See, the new design has been deemed “revolutionary”, a complete “breakthrough”, and “lighter and skinnier than ever before”. But am I the only one feeling a nagging sense of déjà vu? Despite its attitude of literally taking over the world with its brilliance in the sleek confines of the skeleton of this phone, haven’t they called every redesign thus far revolutionary? Each one poised to simply blow your mind? Sorry to inform you, Apple, but I can confidently say I have never been blown away by a phone. I have not awoken to a newspaper article with the newest design of the iPhone and consequently fallen off my chair in sheer shock as to what they’ve done. And to anyone who has, you may want to go take a bike ride and realize what just happened to you (I’m sorry, you can only go up from there).

Why am I so stone-hearted, you ask? How are my nerves made of such steel in the face of such a ground-breaking design? Well, fellow consumers, it stems from the irrepressible irritation of the incessantly repeated updates to an identical phone each time! In a sense, it seems as though the inner snob in all of us is exposed when we can feel the newest iPhone in our pockets, as if it was the ring from Lord of the Rings, power pulsing through you, seeking envy in the eyes of those you speak to. Conversations ensue, and it becomes a challenge to drop the fact that you have the “game-changing” phone by your side, acting as though the phone from three generations ago is almost the same thing as an infamous Nokia brick. The iPhone 4S will now be met with an “Oh, cool”, escaping from their subtly condescending lips, as if you just told them you prefer mailing letters in a horse drawn carriage. In actual fact, that would be far cooler than any phone on the market. Who wants to bring back carriages? Nokia, this is your chance to shine!

Now I hate to sound so brash. Admittedly, I have tapped into some of the beauty of Apple on my own. I’m the proud owner of an iPhone, a MacBook, and some family member down the line has an iPad, I’m sure. I know others who have virtually every product released by them, and others who stick to simply one. Regardless, it is undeniable that Apple has made a permanent mark on the consumer world, and it has come out of repeated innovations that have literally changed the dynamic of technological products. No longer are these advancements confined to the awe of the nerdier elite of society, but it has stretched over the world to an unfathomable degree. It is something to be feared, though, when people will sacrifice all logic for an obsessive frenzy over the release of a product that really doesn’t seem to be that innovative on its own anyhow. How much is marketing and how much is true innovation? How desperate are we to be a part of this advancing technological world that we will buy the newest products every time, not questioning their value but simply praising their name?

            I know we love to pick on our old fogeys of parents, pointing out the flaw in their story of the trek to school being two hills up, chuckling at their confused faces as they attempt to send emails, feeling all high and mighty when they ask you how to save a document, but what were they waiting in line for, camping out for in the prime of their earlier years? Legendary rock festivals, like Woodstock, which gathered 400,000 people, or tickets to Jimi Hendrix or Led Zeppelin. The phenomenon of being the die-hards for a certain niche of the entertainment world came from genuinely sick things you could go to. Not for some game that you’ll hide in your basement and play, or for a phone that you paid someone to stand in line for (oh, the things that could go wrong there). And it’s not like after we get the iPhone, we rush home and do crazily innovative things with it, like solving world hunger with an app, checking out some x-rays as though we were McDreamy from Grey’s Anatomy, being Picasso for an afternoon whilst using your finger to draw a stick man – let’s be real. We instagram, we tweet, we facebook, we game alone on the bus.

            Essentially, phone companies of the world, you’re making us less cool than our parents, with their hipster records and vintage photos of their afros gleaming in the sun. And as impossible as that sounds, it’s becoming a tragic reality. Stop the hype. Let us be cool again.

@FedUpWithPhoneHype #whenwillitend #hashtag

Saturday, October 13, 2012

Music For Yo Fine Earz

To be frank, my week has been hella chill, yo. The program I'm in isn't entirely centered around what those around me call midterms. We do, howeva, have some majour research papers and projects coming up in the near future so don't think this is a slacking deal. And even though my week has been deemed chill, my weeks in general seem to go by faster and faster. Honestly, it's slightly disturbing how quickly it all goes by. 

One minute I'm waving to that dreary figure called Monday slumping towards me and then the next I'm running after Friday in his disco clothes whizzing past. I need more hours in the day! Mother Nature, I'm snapping my fingers! Make that sun last a little bit longer puh-leeze. 

What's been helping me actually get out of bed in the morning though, before I'm caffeinated and superficially wired for my first class, is some new musica that's been injecting some rhythm into my toes. 

First, tumblr tabs to inspire a beautiful fresh start to next week's Monday morning. 

C'est parfait. Ce cappuccino est art à moi. 
(go google translator, buddy ol pal)

Attics have always had such a haunted reputation. Put in a window, let that glorious light in, paint the walls milky white, and suddenly the attic of that supposed family of ghosts is your most beloved sanctuary.

I used to be convinced that this type of layout of a kitchen was the most absurdly cramped idea for a realistic family. Now that I'm confined to the size of a closet for a bedroom, and have fallen quite in love with its quaint coziness, there's much more appeal to living small. This is almost like a more formal alternative to an island, and who doesn't like a hint of well hidden fanciness here and there?

Abstract Numbers:

Small Rooms:

Alvhem Makleri:

Abstract Numbers:

Abstract Numbers:

Abstract Numbers (can you guess I'm a fan?):

Alvhem Makleri:

Alvhem Makleri:

Now my lovelies, onto some music I've been digging.

And by digging, I mean obsessed with. Alex Clare is the most dreamy combination of foot tapping goodness and hip swinging grooves and actually poignant lyrics.

Alright, this next song may not be for everyone (it includes *gasp* swear words!). But I can't deny the catchiness. Slash it's quite the hypnotic tune. Next three are for them techno-dub lovers.

If girliness ever overwhelms you, and you're in your footy pajamas with a cup of tea by your side, put this on and you will be in a small pocket of heaven. 

This song was stuck in my head for honestly days, if not weeks. It's haunting. It's beautiful. It's addictive.

Cheerio! Hope the weather wherever you are is not as gloomy as the view I'm looking at.