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Tuesday, December 04, 2018

OT - Catch-All Pop Culture Extravaganza (December 2018)

The deep lesson of Star Wars is that the Empire is good.

It’s a difficult leap to make—embracing Darth Vader and the Emperor over the plucky and attractive Luke Skywalker and Princess Leia—but a careful examination of the facts, sorted apart from Lucas’s off-the-shelf moral cues, makes a quite convincing case.

Lance Reddick! Lance him! Posted: December 04, 2018 at 07:48 AM | 626 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: movies, music, off-topic, television, whatever else belongs under the rubric of 'popular culture'

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   201. Davo and his Moose Tacos Posted: December 05, 2018 at 06:46 PM (#5794363)
Flarp
   202. PreservedFish Posted: December 05, 2018 at 06:48 PM (#5794364)
I don't think I've actually ever cracked the $400 mark for a meal, but I've cracked $300 once or twice, and cracked $200 several times.

There are some restaurants where the food itself costs over $250, but they're rare - usually it's the wine that puts things over the edge. And I'm not nearly enough of a connoisseur to spend big bucks on the booze.

I met a girl that worked at the Louis XV in Monte Carlo, an Alain Ducasse 3-star restaurant. (She was an extraordinarily talented line cook, way better than me). Check out the menu (pdf). The a la carte menu has 4 entrees, and the cheapest is 114 Euros: squab breast with quince and turnip leaves, if my translation can be trusted. To be clear, that's for a single plate. The full tasting menu costs 360 Euros.
   203. Davo and his Moose Tacos Posted: December 05, 2018 at 06:53 PM (#5794367)
I don’t drink—which I imagine offends the foodies here—but I suppose that’s a big part of how a $400 meal seems impossible.
   204. PreservedFish Posted: December 05, 2018 at 07:06 PM (#5794374)
One the one hand, it's an insane expenditure and anyone at a restaurant like this should be ashamed of himself because of how grossly wasteful it all is.

On the other, if you've got the money and the interest ... in a sense it's not really expensive. There are many hobbies where the dollar amounts are way bigger. Wine, as noted, and whiskey. Collecting fine art. Tailored clothing, handmade shoes. Jewelry, watches, cars. Hotels. People spend a lot more money on baseball cards, Magic cards, comic books, first editions, old furniture, war relics, ephemera. The idea that you can seek out one of the world's great craftsmen and enjoy his work for a few hundred bucks - it's pretty great. I dunno. I'm into it.
   205. DEFCON: jive Posted: December 05, 2018 at 08:07 PM (#5794391)
It must be a spectacular year for wild mushrooms in the northwest, or else my local grocery has a remarkably consistent source, because I've been buying chanterelles for $12/# for a couple of months. This is an Adventist grocery store that is typically focused on bulk dry goods and cheap produce. If they are getting access to these, I assume they are everywhere. Since I've lost touch with the mushroom guy (and if you don't know the mushroom people, they tend to disappear without notice), this is the best mushroom eating year since a big burn in the area 6 years ago led to a bumper crop of morels.

If you've discounted mushrooms because of a dislike for supermarket buttons, please continue in blissful ignorance, and help keep the chanterelle market down for the rest of us.
   206. McCoy Posted: December 05, 2018 at 08:11 PM (#5794392)
Heading out to Tiny Lou’s this weekend for brunch. Eater just named it the restaurant of the year for Atlanta. It’s the hot spot right now.
   207. stig-tossled, hornswoggled gef the typing mongoose Posted: December 05, 2018 at 08:17 PM (#5794394)
Eater just named it the restaurant of the year for Atlanta. It’s the hot spot right now.


And I just watched first-generation punk band Eater doing No Brains in footage from The Punk Rock Movie (1978), a performance featuring a pig's head. It's nice when things come together like that.
   208. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: December 05, 2018 at 09:29 PM (#5794416)
I don't think I've actually ever cracked the $400 mark for a meal, but I've cracked $300 once or twice, and cracked $200 several times.

Per person?

I've spent $600, for 5-6 people though. I think ~$150 p.p. might be my high water mark, like for New Year's Eve or Valentine's Day somewhere good.
   209. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: December 05, 2018 at 09:31 PM (#5794417)
On the other, if you've got the money and the interest ... in a sense it's not really expensive. There are many hobbies where the dollar amounts are way bigger. Wine, as noted, and whiskey.

I've never spent over $100 for a bottle of wine or whiskey either. There's so much quality at reasonable prices, it seems silly to go there.
   210. Count Vorror Rairol Mencoon (CoB) Posted: December 05, 2018 at 09:38 PM (#5794419)
I can crack $100 (without booze) at my favorite sushi bar without trying especially hard.

Heading to Charleston on Friday for a week's vacation with my family, anyone have any suggestions?

I know we're going to Jestine's and Magnolia's but everything else is up in the air ...
   211. What did Billy Ripken have against ElRoy Face? Posted: December 05, 2018 at 09:39 PM (#5794420)
I think ~$150 p.p. might be my high water mark, like for New Year's Eve or Valentine's Day somewhere good.
Oh, man, please tell me you're not going out to expensive places on New Year's Eve or Valentine's Day. "Yes, I'd like to pay 50% extra for the privilege of having my menu options limited to three choices!"
   212. BrianBrianson Posted: December 05, 2018 at 09:41 PM (#5794422)
I don’t drink—which I imagine offends the foodies here


Not even Islay Whiskies?

I'll be honest: I'm a little hurt. Lucky I know how to sooth my pain.
   213. Greg K Posted: December 05, 2018 at 09:44 PM (#5794423)
Lucky I know how to sooth my pain.

Button mushrooms?
   214. What did Billy Ripken have against ElRoy Face? Posted: December 05, 2018 at 09:48 PM (#5794424)
I don’t drink—which I imagine offends the foodies here—
Eh. I like good beer and really enjoy wine, but I can't for the life of me develop a palate for whiskey or tequila (much to the consternation of my Mexican in-laws), or any hard liquor for that matter. I get that there are many people who pick up flavor notes as with wine, but it just tastes like pain to me. So I understand just not liking it.
   215. BrianBrianson Posted: December 05, 2018 at 09:50 PM (#5794425)
Jeez, the last time I could buy fresh chanterelles, I was paying $30-$40/lb (CDN, but still).

Totally worth it. I more or less won my wife over by taking her to dinner where we could get calf brain ravioli with peas and chanterelles.
   216. What did Billy Ripken have against ElRoy Face? Posted: December 05, 2018 at 09:53 PM (#5794426)
I've never had brains - gotta draw the line somewhere, and they seem like a textural horror, as well as the conceptual problems. But I bet in a ravioli with peas and chanterelles, I would probably like it.
   217. Master of the Horse Posted: December 05, 2018 at 09:54 PM (#5794428)
Whistle Pig Old World rye is $109 a bottle. Totally worth it
   218. PreservedFish Posted: December 05, 2018 at 09:59 PM (#5794430)
Per person?


Yes.

Like, when I ate at Momofuku Ko, the food was $170 or so, and we got a drink pairing that was an additional $80-90 per person. And probably tax and tip on top of that. Totally worth it, one of the best restaurant meals of my life, still remember it. This was a 4 hour experience, by the way, ~11 major courses, ~8 tiny ones.

Also, a good example of why I like the zero-option tasting menu. One of the courses was escargot. Now, I've had escargots a bunch. They're kind of rubbery and fishy and not that great, not my favorite thing. The traditional preparation, which uses a ludicrous amount of butter and garlic, is classic, but not something I'd usually order at a nice restaurant. But here, it was part of the tasting menu, so it just arrived, and I tucked in, and lo and behold, the best escargot I've ever had, kind of a Norman preparation braised in cider with little chestnut dumplings. That was the most memorable dish of the meal.
   219. PreservedFish Posted: December 05, 2018 at 10:06 PM (#5794432)
Brains are like sweetbreads, but even softer. They're delicious. Often fried, nice and crispy, which gives a good textural contrast.
   220. Howie Menckel Posted: December 05, 2018 at 10:12 PM (#5794434)
I think ~$150 p.p. might be my high water mark

just last week I had dinner for 7 at a midtown Manhattan steakhouse, and with the many appetizers and desserts plus steaks and a la carte baked potatoes and everything else, even with one total bottle of wine and a handful of draft beers it probably ran about $150 per person (the boss paid for it).

that's a personal high-water mark - and makes me wonder if my original chosen profession was a wise choice.
;)
   221. What did Billy Ripken have against ElRoy Face? Posted: December 05, 2018 at 10:12 PM (#5794436)
Brains are like sweetbreads, but even softer. They're delicious. Often fried, nice and crispy, which gives a good textural contrast.
Fried, I could probably do? I've had fried sweetbreads before and liked them. That escargot dish sounds fantastic, by the way.
   222. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: December 05, 2018 at 10:13 PM (#5794437)
Oh, man, please tell me you're not going out to expensive places on New Year's Eve or Valentine's Day. "Yes, I'd like to pay 50% extra for the privilege of having my menu options limited to three choices!"

I'm going to nice restaurants. Nothing extravagant. I don't particularly care that I over pay vs. a normal day. There's more demand on those day, so prices should be higher. I'm not taking my wife out on Feb. 13th to save $100.
   223. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: December 05, 2018 at 10:16 PM (#5794439)
Like, when I ate at Momofuku Ko, the food was $170 or so, and we got a drink pairing that was an additional $80-90 per person. And probably tax and tip on top of that. Totally worth it, one of the best restaurant meals of my life, still remember it. This was a 4 hour experience, by the way, ~11 major courses, ~8 tiny ones.

Wow. My wife would have gone nuts. A meal that stretches beyond 1:30 is taxing for her. For me, two hours is about the comfortable limit with a couple. With a big, lively group I can tolerate 3 hours. A four hour meal would cause me to fake illness to get out.
   224. What did Billy Ripken have against ElRoy Face? Posted: December 05, 2018 at 10:17 PM (#5794441)
I don't particularly care that I over pay vs. a normal day.
Yeah, but what about those "special prix fixe menus" that eliminate 90 percent of your options?
   225. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: December 05, 2018 at 10:18 PM (#5794442)
Eh. I like good beer and really enjoy wine, but I can't for the life of me develop a palate for whiskey or tequila (much to the consternation of my Mexican in-laws), or any hard liquor for that matter. I get that there are many people who pick up flavor notes as with wine, but it just tastes like pain to me. So I understand just not liking it.

That's funny, as I've aged (I'm 47) I've lost my taste for beer almost completely, and wine mostly. I pretty much would always prefer a cocktail.
   226. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: December 05, 2018 at 10:19 PM (#5794443)
Yeah, but what about those "special prix fixe menus" that eliminate 90 percent of your options?

Well, we'll generally check in advance to make sure we like the choices. Also, many of the places we go to don't limit you nearly that much. Some have full menus, or pretty close. We're in the burbs, not NYC.
   227. BrianBrianson Posted: December 05, 2018 at 10:21 PM (#5794444)
Yeah, I'll be honest, I haven't had brains in a context where I can talk about the texture. Taste-wise, aye.

That escargot dish sounds fantastic, by the way.


Garlic and butter? Yeah, I used to buy canned snails at the dollar store, and with garlic and butter, brilliant. I tried gathering wild snails once, same deal. But, err, wild snails you gotta let spend 3-4 days eating bread, because they can eat poisonous mushrooms, and poison you if you eat 'em. So, it's totally not worth it. I was paying $1 a tin. But it was the vegan argument in reverse - if I'm going to eat animals, I should be willing to hunt and kill them. And I can manage that with snails, not having any licences or skills.
   228. What did Billy Ripken have against ElRoy Face? Posted: December 05, 2018 at 10:21 PM (#5794445)
For me, two hours is about the comfortable limit with a couple. With a big, lively group I can tolerate 3 hours.
Likewise. Belcanto in Lisbon was a little over 3 hours and just me and my wife, but we were at a table in the kitchen and of course they're bringing you new dishes the whole time. But it was still pushing it, especially with the third dessert course when neither of us has much of a sweet tooth. I cannot stand pointless lingering after a meal, taking another hour for dessert and coffee and all that crap.

I'm kind of the ideal restaurant customer - I want to enjoy the food, I tip well and I want to let you turn the table.
   229. PreservedFish Posted: December 05, 2018 at 10:22 PM (#5794446)
Wow. My wife would have gone nuts. A meal that stretches beyond 1:30 is taxing for her. For me, two hours is about the comfortable limit with a couple. With a big, lively group I can tolerate 3 hours. A four hour meal would cause me to fake illness to get out.

This restaurant at the time had 12 seats, sushi bar style, so you were watching the chefs work the entire time. Always something to see. And you could look at it as a lovely 4 hours spent with the wife, with plenty of interesting delicious alcohol, punctuated by regular doses of world class food. I enjoyed every second of it.
   230. What did Billy Ripken have against ElRoy Face? Posted: December 05, 2018 at 10:23 PM (#5794448)
I pretty much would always prefer a cocktail.
I like a well-made cocktail as well, provided it's balanced and isn't overpowered by the alcohol.

Garlic and butter?
No, the one PF was talking about with the cider braise. But garlic and butter is of course good too.
   231. PreservedFish Posted: December 05, 2018 at 10:26 PM (#5794449)
Now I'm looking at Belcanto's menu. What did you have? I'd probably go with the "Menu Lisboa" although the "Oxtail with chickpea, foie gras, veal tendons, onion cream with Serra cheese" off the a la carte menu sounds pretty great to me.
   232. PreservedFish Posted: December 05, 2018 at 10:30 PM (#5794454)
I cannot stand pointless lingering after a meal

Man, I love a good linger.
   233. What did Billy Ripken have against ElRoy Face? Posted: December 05, 2018 at 10:32 PM (#5794455)
They never gave us menus or asked us what we wanted (aside from asking about allergies and preferences - yep, I got to tell them no mayo! Ha!), so I would assume we had the full Evolution Menu. We only did the 5 wine pairing. My God, I can't imagine trying to drink 9 wines with all that food. They would have had to drag me out.
   234. DEFCON: jive Posted: December 05, 2018 at 11:16 PM (#5794457)
On lingering after a meal

To tie a couple of these together, I was a Mormon missionary in Spain for a while. Due to a general lack of interest from the local population in what we had to offer, we had time to help some Valencian mormons harvest their almond trees. There was a padded jacket we took turns putting on, to protect from the falling nuts, while shaking the nuts out of the trees onto tarps. After a lot of shaking and tarp dragging, they fed us. Lunch was a small dish of toothpicks and a big bowl of snails harvested from the property, steamed. That's it. There was no butter, garlic, cider braise, or lingering. I ate enough snails to be polite, but was eager to get away from the bowl of shells and back to the padded jacket.
   235. PreservedFish Posted: December 05, 2018 at 11:22 PM (#5794458)
Big lunch, full belly, long sobremesa? That's the stuff.
   236. What did Billy Ripken have against ElRoy Face? Posted: December 05, 2018 at 11:29 PM (#5794459)
I guess I could enjoy a long sobremesa under the right circumstances with the right people. But let's face it - in the U.S., once your old friends have kids and move to the suburbs, the concept of even getting together for a quick sandwich at lunch is out of the question, let alone lingering, drinking wine and catching up for 3 hours.
   237. DEFCON: jive Posted: December 05, 2018 at 11:42 PM (#5794460)
Yeah, around here it never seems to work out after lunch, but it's the best part of a dinner party. I think part of it is breaking through the expected conversations--how's your health, what's going on at work, how 'bout them politics--into something a little more personal. Although now that you mention it, the evening sobremesa usually works best with childless folks. Kids tend to end the evening prematurely, or the guilt over having to relieve the babysitter rears up.
   238. What did Billy Ripken have against ElRoy Face? Posted: December 05, 2018 at 11:49 PM (#5794461)
it's the best part of a dinner party. I think part of it is breaking through the expected conversations--how's your health, what's going on at work, how 'bout them politics--into something a little more personal.
Yeah, that sounds great, if you can get there. If you've figured out a way to get your friends with kids to even leave their houses for a dinner party in the first place, please let me know. I would like to subscribe to your newsletter.
   239. PreservedFish Posted: December 05, 2018 at 11:56 PM (#5794462)
If you've figured out a way to get your friends with kids to even leave their houses for a dinner party in the first place, please let me know. I would like to subscribe to your newsletter.


Tell them you're hiring a babysitter.
   240. What did Billy Ripken have against ElRoy Face? Posted: December 06, 2018 at 12:01 AM (#5794463)
Tell them you're hiring a babysitter.
Maybe, but I find that the concept of the non-family babysitter has pretty much disappeared. I know there are services out there where you can get a vetted babysitter at the drop of a dime, but literally none of our friends seem to have even considered them as a possibility. The only time you ever see anyone is when the grandparents come to visit. I dunno, maybe our friends are particularly paranoid (or they just really don't want to hang out with us), but that seems unlikely.
   241. McCoy Posted: December 06, 2018 at 05:06 AM (#5794473)
For Charleston I went to R Kitchen several years back. It was a nice experience. Small, intimate but laid back and relaxed. Can have a conversation with the cooks if you want. It's inexpensive as well.

My wife wants to go back to Charleston in the next few months because the first time we went she had a bad medical experience and didn't get to have a great experience with me. Let.me know if you come across anything good.
   242. manchestermets Posted: December 06, 2018 at 06:06 AM (#5794475)
Have you ever tried horse? I haven't, but I think I would if given the opportunity.


There's a stall on Borough Market in London that sells burgers made from exotic meat. I've had horse, zebra, kangaroo, giraffe and camel. With them being burgers, it's hard to map it to the true relative quality of the meat, but the horse burger was very good. I'd eat pretty much any animal, within the realms of the common taboo against eating carnivorous animals that seems to exist. I have heard that bear is good.


ElRoy, I'm going to Lisbon next week. We'll only be there for two days. Any must-see things to do?


The real culinary don't-miss in Lisbon is, of course, Pastéis de Belém. The tram ride (get the Metro to Cais do Sodré and then the number 15 tram to Belem, which is an interesting area beyond the custard tarts. If you like modern art, the Museu Coleção Berardo there is good.) goes through an interesting area, with lots of beautiful decoratively tiled houses. Lisbon appears to be a great walking city, but sadly when I was there it rained continually so I didn't really get the chance to put that to the test. Shamefully I didn't travel in a single funicular the entire time I was there.


   243. Lassus Posted: December 06, 2018 at 07:42 AM (#5794478)
I cannot stand pointless lingering after a meal
Man, I love a good linger.


I haven't scoured the thread above for positions, but for me it's about company and drinking. If it's a good conversation, lingering is great. If people are only lingering to drink more (which, by experience, seems to be a good 75/80% occurrence), and then conversing because drinking in silence is creepy, then that's a problem for me.
   244. McCoy Posted: December 06, 2018 at 07:43 AM (#5794479)
Do you have to?
   245. Lassus Posted: December 06, 2018 at 07:50 AM (#5794480)
To turn this A BIT away from the Lounge and back to Pop Culture, has anyone here watched the amazingly trashy Versailles TV show? It's been pretty fun, but it seems to be going out with a bit of a whimper, considering how long Louis XIV actually lived.
   246. Lassus Posted: December 06, 2018 at 07:50 AM (#5794481)
Do you have to?

?
   247. Greg K Posted: December 06, 2018 at 08:49 AM (#5794487)
To turn this A BIT away from the Lounge and back to Pop Culture, has anyone here watched the amazingly trashy Versailles TV show? It's been pretty fun, but it seems to be going out with a bit of a whimper, considering how long Louis XIV actually lived.

I saw 10 minutes of a random episode in the middle of the second season once. It seemed fun, I'd be up for watching it, but couldn't figure out how to get access to the show (which is odd as I see it is a co-Canadian production). Hmm, wikipedia says it plays on "The Super Channel" in Canada, which I have never heard of.
   248. Greg K Posted: December 06, 2018 at 08:54 AM (#5794488)
On the topic of a show tackling a long run of history (ie. all of Louis XIV's reign), my instinct is that it could drag. Movies tend to work better when they focus on a single moment or arc, rather than trying to encompass a whole generation of activity. But I wonder if TV shows might work better. "The Crown" will be an interesting experiment in that we're jumping ahead in time with a new cast for the next two seasons.

EDIT: Hopefully they iron out the kinks in decades-long narrative TV shows by the time HBO buys the rights to adapt my podcast.
   249. Lassus Posted: December 06, 2018 at 09:16 AM (#5794497)
NETFLIX & Amazon both, I think. Watched 1st two seasons on former, watching 3rd on latter.

Everyone is way WAY too pretty. I mean, it's a ridiculous show, but definitely engaging.
   250. PreservedFish Posted: December 06, 2018 at 09:25 AM (#5794503)
I haven't scoured the thread above for positions, but for me it's about company and drinking. If it's a good conversation, lingering is great. If people are only lingering to drink more (which, by experience, seems to be a good 75/80% occurrence), and then conversing because drinking in silence is creepy, then that's a problem for me.


It must get tiresome being a teetotaler. Every time I'm sober and my friends are drunk, I marvel at how unfunny and boring they are, how lame their humor, etc. But they're having a grand ole time, and I would be too if I drank some more that night. I bet that during about 33% of your 75/80%, your companions think they're having a great conversation.
   251. McCoy Posted: December 06, 2018 at 09:30 AM (#5794505)
Do you have to?

?


Do you have to let it linger?
   252. Greg K Posted: December 06, 2018 at 09:34 AM (#5794507)
NETFLIX & Amazon both, I think. Watched 1st two seasons on former, watching 3rd on latter.

Everyone is way WAY too pretty. I mean, it's a ridiculous show, but definitely engaging.

Sadly, Canadian Netflix has quite a limited catalogue. Though further reading says the mythological Super Channel lost the English language rights to the show in Canada, and The Movie Network holds them now. That's good news! I have those guys. Maybe I'll give it a spin this weekend.

There are few things I'm willing to suspend my disbelief for. But luckily one of those things is pretty people.
   253. Lassus Posted: December 06, 2018 at 09:40 AM (#5794508)
It must get tiresome being a teetotaler.

After the first 30 years or so it isn't so bad, you sorta get used to it at that point.
   254. Gonfalon Bubble Posted: December 06, 2018 at 09:50 AM (#5794510)
I can second the Belcanto restaurant recommendation for a trip to Lisbon.
   255. Howie Menckel Posted: December 06, 2018 at 10:40 AM (#5794536)
surprised that we have multiple Lisbonians here
#nttawwt
   256. PreservedFish Posted: December 06, 2018 at 11:18 AM (#5794559)
I was thinking about the twee rock thing. I don't have a problem with the most self-consciously twee bands. Like this. What I usually dislike, though, are the indie bands that trend towards preciousness. I'm thinking about Band of Horses, the Shins, the Decembrists, Fleet Foxes, Death Cab for Cutie, that sort of thing. Literate, wistful, sensitive ... I feel like more often than not, that music just falls flat for me.

I think it's likely that the precious bands I don't like are indeed more ambitious and (to use ElRoy's word) vulnerable than the twee pop bands that I do like - that is, that they're really trying to make achingly beautiful and meaningful music. Whereas the twee rockers are perhaps more often just trying to make fun, catchy pop. I just happen to prefer the catchy stuff.

Of course it's impossible to separate the music itself from the attitude - what I'm calling twee pop is usually grounded in sunny punky power pop that I find very likable.

Now, Pomplamoose? That's just disposable, silly stuff. That particular band isn't one I like, but music of that ilk still doesn't really bother me. I'm just not ready to always listen to ambitious, vulnerable, meaningful music. Sometimes I want something disposable. And I'd really rather hear disposable silly hipster pop done well than vulnerable indie rock done poorly.
   257. What did Billy Ripken have against ElRoy Face? Posted: December 06, 2018 at 11:22 AM (#5794563)
Sadly, Canadian Netflix has quite a limited catalogue.
Yeah, but how can you ever get tired of watching Terrance and Phillip: Asses of Fire?
   258. Master of the Horse Posted: December 06, 2018 at 11:26 AM (#5794567)
256--know that the place has moved away from food talk but enjoyed your posts on the topic.
   259. stig-tossled, hornswoggled gef the typing mongoose Posted: December 06, 2018 at 11:29 AM (#5794571)
what I'm calling twee pop is usually grounded in sunny punky power pop that I find very likable.


Sort of surprised to see the linked article not cite the Television Personalities as antecedents.
   260. Panik on the streets of London (Trout! Trout!) Posted: December 06, 2018 at 11:39 AM (#5794576)
the Shins, the Decembrists, Fleet Foxes, Death Cab for Cutie


I feel personally attacked! LOL. I like all 4 of those bands. Is that considered twee? I think Band of Horses is boring though. The list of twee bands that you posted from Wikipedia contains 5 or 6 groups I like too though.

W/R/T power pop, I definitely am a big fan of Sweet, Badfinger, Cheap Trick, Blondie, The Cars, Big Star, Replacements etc.

I am always interested in hearing other recommendations. :)
   261. PreservedFish Posted: December 06, 2018 at 11:49 AM (#5794580)
I don't think they're considered twee. I like my term "precious."

Sort of surprised to see the linked article not cite the Television Personalities as antecedents.

Never heard 'em. Listening now. Really like it so far. Absolutely see the influence there. Really good.
   262. Baldrick Posted: December 06, 2018 at 12:03 PM (#5794590)
I don't think they're considered twee. I like my term "precious."

Yeah, precious is a pretty fair word. Not always, certainly, but it's a defining feature of their music.

For The Decemberists, I'd actually say that I love them when their preciousness takes on a twee aspect (Grace Cathedral Hill, California One/Youth and Beauty Brigade) and grow quickly frustrated when it takes on a baroque or rococco aspect (far more often in recent years).

But they're kind of a weird case, because as they've gotten bigger their pretensions have grown enormously. And weirdly, they're now a band that puts on Huge. Rock. Extravaganzas. l was visiting a friend in Maine a couple years back who ended up having an extra ticket to see them, and it was like going to the circus. It was a more ambitious big stadium rock experience than just about anyone else I've seen in recent years (apart from Springsteen).
   263. Der-K: at 10% emotional investment Posted: December 06, 2018 at 12:07 PM (#5794596)
Really like the first Shins album. They've had other good songs but I never need to hear them - the first album is sufficient.
White Winter Hymnal (Fleet Foxes) was one of my favorite songs of that year.
The Decemberists are skilled but I've a tough time getting past Gibbard's voice, for whatever reason. July! July! and 16 Military Wives are both songs I go back to ... that also maybe highlight why I struggled to get into them more generally.
Death Cab never worked for me (again, something about the vocals).

If you like Big Star, maybe check out (and I mention this guy on this site at least once a year) Scott Miller's bands Game Theory and The Loud Family. His voice is an acquired taste and they're maybe less straight-forward than some other power pop bands but he's in my "inner circle" in terms of my rock fandom.

Oh! Maybe check out Jason Falkner, one of the guys from Jellyfish - his sound lines up with some of those mentions.

More generally, here's a guide to power pop that might be worth a read / sampling of tracks. A lot of good work was turned out by one (or no) hit wonders in that genre, so compilations are a decent way to go.
   264. Master of the Horse Posted: December 06, 2018 at 12:07 PM (#5794597)
When I think of precious and music I think of that stupid chvrches song, Miracle.
   265. Panik on the streets of London (Trout! Trout!) Posted: December 06, 2018 at 12:14 PM (#5794603)
I think using the word "precious" to describe those bands is insulting. "Literate, wistful, and sensitive" sounds a lot more accurate and makes more sense. I can understand not wanting to listen to it all the time, or even not at all, but calling it "precious" seems a bridge too far for someone who gets defensive when people don't like to eat mayonnaise. ;)
   266. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: December 06, 2018 at 12:15 PM (#5794604)
It must get tiresome being a teetotaler.


I'm not a teetotaler but I'm not a drinker and never have been. The upside comes on days like today when I get back to the office after a week of meetings overseas to find one of our moderately high-maintenance clients in Barcelona sent me 6 bottles of Spanish wine (apparently good stuff according to my more sophisticated colleague) as a thank-you for some last-minute scurrying we had to do on their critical FDA program. I got to give one extra bottle to another member of my group because I don't care to keep one myself and since nobody knows I don't really drink I come off looking magnanimous. #leadership
   267. Panik on the streets of London (Trout! Trout!) Posted: December 06, 2018 at 12:16 PM (#5794605)
Thank you all for the recommendations!

The Decemberists are skilled but I've a tough time getting past Gibbard's voice
Colin Meloy is the lead singer for the Decembrists.
   268. Panik on the streets of London (Trout! Trout!) Posted: December 06, 2018 at 12:18 PM (#5794607)
I have honestly never heard the word precious used to refer to that kind of music so perhaps there is a different meaning that I am misunderstanding but it sounds a little like condescending to effeminate male vocals.
   269. Davo and his Moose Tacos Posted: December 06, 2018 at 12:19 PM (#5794609)
In what feels like a different lifetime, I used The Shins’ “Caring Is Creepy” as the theme song of my show on a college radio station.
   270. Panik on the streets of London (Trout! Trout!) Posted: December 06, 2018 at 12:21 PM (#5794611)
More generally, here's a guide to power pop that might be worth a read / sampling of tracks. A lot of good work was turned out by one (or no) hit wonders in that genre, so compilations are a decent way to go.


This is really good. I forgot the Raspberries in my short list. I think they did power pop as well as anyone.
   271. PreservedFish Posted: December 06, 2018 at 12:24 PM (#5794615)
I think using the word "precious" to describe those bands is insulting.


Intentionally so! "Precious" is what I call literate, wistful, sensitive bands that don't, in my opinion, pull it off.

I can understand not wanting to listen to it all the time, or even not at all, but calling it "precious" seems a bridge too far for someone who gets defensive when people don't like to eat mayonnaise. ;)


In the interest of consistency, I'll admit that by closing myself off to such bands I am potentially missing out. I know this music is beloved by many. I endeavor to find the beauty in all things. Sometimes I fail.

Or maybe I'm right, and they just suck. Sometimes things just suck. You don't have to like all mayonnaises. I only ask you to appreciate the finest, most appropriate mayonnaises. Ask for your Subway sandwich without mayo? I have no problem with that. But when you're constantly on guard during your honeymoon against all forms of mayonnaise, in a veritable temple of mayonnaises, you're messing up.
   272. Lassus Posted: December 06, 2018 at 12:24 PM (#5794616)
Oh! Maybe check out Jason Falkner, one of the guys from Jellyfish - his sound lines up with some of those mentions.

Seminal early 90s concert in Hell's Kitchen that I went to with Andy Botwin. What an amazing band, an all-time top ten IMO, I felt lucky to have caught them. Roger Manning's MOOG COOKBOOK and other solo work should also be looked at.


Also, for similar, I known Dan Wilson is the somewhat over-saturated CLOSING TIME dude of Semisonic; but his far lesser-known solo work and early Trip Shakespeare stuff (now classic indie) is just amazing.


Death Cab for Cutie

I had a fellow hard-pop devotee who LOVED Death Cab, and I was so excited by his recommendation... but hated the band. So dull.
   273. Panik on the streets of London (Trout! Trout!) Posted: December 06, 2018 at 12:30 PM (#5794624)
I think using the word "precious" to describe those bands is insulting.

Intentionally so! "Precious" is what I call literate, wistful, sensitive bands that don't, in my opinion, pull it off.

I can understand not wanting to listen to it all the time, or even not at all, but calling it "precious" seems a bridge too far for someone who gets defensive when people don't like to eat mayonnaise. ;)

In the interest of consistency, I'll admit that by closing myself off to such bands I am potentially missing out. I know this music is beloved by many.


Hmm fair enough. And to be fair on my end, I wouldn't put any of those groups in my inner circle either. But I do think they made some good records. Taste varies obviously. I am that middle aged person that is proud of themselves when they discover a band from the 21st century that they enjoy listening to.
   274. PreservedFish Posted: December 06, 2018 at 12:31 PM (#5794625)
Ha. Not so fast. Edited 271 to be less conciliatory.
   275. Panik on the streets of London (Trout! Trout!) Posted: December 06, 2018 at 12:32 PM (#5794626)
Edited 271 to be less conciliatory.


Jerk.

Death Cab is not a hill I am going to die on because even though I like them (actually prefer the Postal Service album to anything Gibbard did with DCFC), they are not my favorite or anything. I do enjoy interesting lyrics sometimes while other times enjoying the power poppish "twee" stuff you mention. Probably overall my allegiance lies more closely to Cheap Trick or The Raspberries than DCFC or Fleet Foxes or whatever other preciousness <eyeroll> is out there.
   276. Don August(us) Cesar Geronimo Berroa Posted: December 06, 2018 at 12:35 PM (#5794628)
The Decemberists are skilled but I've a tough time getting past Gibbard's voice
Colin Meloy is the lead singer for the Decembrists.


And Ben Gibbard is the lead singer for Death Cab for Cutie.
   277. Der-K: at 10% emotional investment Posted: December 06, 2018 at 12:38 PM (#5794629)
267+276/meloy v gibbard: oops. known. brain flip. thanks.

i like a bunch of roger manning solo stuff too. yet jellyfish never quite clicked? not sure why...

that semisonic album (the one with closing time) is slick "but" pretty solid, wilson knows what he's doing.
   278. Panik on the streets of London (Trout! Trout!) Posted: December 06, 2018 at 12:40 PM (#5794630)
And Ben Gibbard is the lead singer for Death Cab for Cutie.


Indeed. I thought he was saying "but" as if Gibbard's voice was the reason he didn't like the Decembrists.

EDIT: He corrected it. :)
   279. Lassus Posted: December 06, 2018 at 12:49 PM (#5794638)
yet jellyfish never quite clicked? not sure why...

Lord knows. It's kinda perfect music.


that semisonic album (the one with closing time) is slick "but" pretty solid, wilson knows what he's doing.

The Great Divide is better. If you haven't, you should pick up Lulu or Across the Universe by Trip Shakespeare also. (Honestly, you should pick up every album they put out, but I'm trying to be somewhat reasonable. Also, I feel kind of old now.)

Wilson is a pro's pro songwriter - see Adele's worldwide takeover single that he co-wrote.
   280. Panik on the streets of London (Trout! Trout!) Posted: December 06, 2018 at 12:56 PM (#5794641)
The Great Divide is better. If you haven't, you should pick up Lulu or Across the Universe by Trip Shakespeare also.

Wilson is a pro's pro songwriter - see Adele's worldwide takeover single that he co-wrote.


I am going to investigate Trip Shakespeare this weekend.
   281. Gonfalon Bubble Posted: December 06, 2018 at 01:12 PM (#5794650)
My delight in power pop is vast and ongoing. When I get the chance to do it justice, I'll post some recommendations.

All of the older groups Panik mentioned have done excellent things. But I like just one of the four newer ones-- Decembrists-- and I don't see them as having much to do with the genre (even given the amorphous parameters of "power pop").
   282. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: December 06, 2018 at 01:13 PM (#5794651)
I was thinking about the twee rock thing. I don't have a problem with the most self-consciously twee bands. Like this. What I usually dislike, though, are the indie bands that trend towards preciousness. I'm thinking about Band of Horses, the Shins, the Decembrists, Fleet Foxes, Death Cab for Cutie, that sort of thing. Literate, wistful, sensitive ... I feel like more often than not, that music just falls flat for me.


How do you feel about Passenger? I've like the songs from Death Cab and The Decembrists I've heard on local radio.
   283. PreservedFish Posted: December 06, 2018 at 01:15 PM (#5794652)
All of the older groups Panik mentioned have done excellent things. But I like just one of the four newer ones-- Decembrists-- and I don't see them as having much to do with the genre (even given the amorphous parameters of "power pop").


Nobody called those four groups power pop. I brought them up as examples of "precious" indie rock that I don't like, drawing a contrast with power pop bands that I do like.
   284. Davo and his Moose Tacos Posted: December 06, 2018 at 01:19 PM (#5794657)
Spotify Wrapped is back. Detailed stats on all your listening habits in 2018.

In a sign of how small a part of my life music has become, I learned I spent just 1,026 minutes listening to music on that site.

Top artists: D. Imman, Dessa, Ben Frost, Ludovico Einaudi, The Magnetic Fields


I can pretend I listen to cool music, but the algorithm knows the truth!
   285. PreservedFish Posted: December 06, 2018 at 01:21 PM (#5794658)
Snapper, I dislike Passenger.
   286. PreservedFish Posted: December 06, 2018 at 01:26 PM (#5794661)
Spotify Wrapped is back. Detailed stats on all your listening habits in 2018.

Thanks, hadn't seen this before. I listened to 34,000 minutes. Unfortunately my top list is somewhat corrupted by the fact that I share my account with my 6yr old daughter, who tends to listen to the same ~50 songs incessantly.

Top 5 artists:

The Beatles
King Gizzard & the Lizard Wizard
Sun Ra
The Byrds
Stevie Wonder
   287. What did Billy Ripken have against ElRoy Face? Posted: December 06, 2018 at 01:26 PM (#5794662)
But when you're constantly on guard during your honeymoon against all forms of mayonnaise, in a veritable temple of mayonnaises, you're messing up.
Well that was a bit gratuitous.
   288. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: December 06, 2018 at 01:30 PM (#5794667)
Snapper, I dislike Passenger.

I like him a lot. Though it is a bit precious to have a band name for one guy.
   289. PreservedFish Posted: December 06, 2018 at 01:35 PM (#5794671)
Well that was a bit gratuitous.

I mean, that could have referred to anyone here.
   290. Lassus Posted: December 06, 2018 at 01:36 PM (#5794672)
Unfortunately my top list is somewhat corrupted by the fact that I share my account with my 6yr old daughter

You probably misspelled "improved".

I think it was Sun Ra who called Philadelphia The City of Brotherly Shove.
   291. Panik on the streets of London (Trout! Trout!) Posted: December 06, 2018 at 01:36 PM (#5794674)
The Beatles
King Gizzard & the Lizard Wizard
Sun Ra
The Byrds
Stevie Wonder


King Gizzard is excellent. Actually I really like all of these artists.

   292. PreservedFish Posted: December 06, 2018 at 01:44 PM (#5794675)
You probably misspelled "improved".

I have to admit this might be true. The Beatles and Stevie Wonder probably wouldn't have made the top 5 without her.

Top 5 songs were all hers:

"Handstand" by Rosie McClelland, a Youtube pre-teen idol whose song was featured in her dance class
"Go Outside" by Cults
"52 Girls" by the B-52's - These last two are songs that I put on a playlist I made for her and she also took a liking to
"Crocodile Rock" - There have been a lot of Crocodile Rock performances lately by dolls and stuffed animals
"I Love Rock n Roll"
   293. Baldrick Posted: December 06, 2018 at 01:56 PM (#5794681)
"A Temple of Mayonnaises" is honestly the most offensive thing that anyone has ever written on this site.
   294. Don August(us) Cesar Geronimo Berroa Posted: December 06, 2018 at 01:56 PM (#5794682)
Top Artists

Mastodon
Gojira
If These Trees Could Talk
King Gizzard & The Lizard Wizard
Kyng

Only 3,327 minutes though. I don't use Spotify except in my car to and from work, and, even then, I have Sirius XM and a bunch of CDs so it is not close to an every day thing. I mean, King Gizzard is 4th on my list, and I think I listened to 1 album 2 times through.

edit: and, apparently, I listened to non-mainstream artists 56% more than the average Spotify listener
   295. Panik on the streets of London (Trout! Trout!) Posted: December 06, 2018 at 01:59 PM (#5794683)
All my songs on that list are going to be ambient sleep music since I put on the same playlist every night to get to sleep. I'm trying to use my fiancée's Spotify for that next year so I can get a more accurate list.
   296. PreservedFish Posted: December 06, 2018 at 02:10 PM (#5794689)
"A Temple of Mayonnaises" is honestly the most offensive thing that anyone has ever written on this site.


Also my #6 band.
   297. manchestermets Posted: December 06, 2018 at 02:11 PM (#5794690)
Band from that Wikipedia list that are fantastic, and probably unknown to people here: Allo Darlin. A favourite song from each album: The Polaroid Song, Tallulah and Bright Eyes.

I'm assuming there's some overlap between power pop and punk pop, so I'm going to throw in a rec for Martha on that front.
   298. Baldrick Posted: December 06, 2018 at 02:13 PM (#5794691)
Band from that Wikipedia list that are fantastic, and probably unknown to people here: Allo Darlin. A favourite song from each album: The Polaroid Song, Tallulah and Bright Eyes.

Love Allo Darlin. Their Europe album from 2012 was one of my favorites of the year.

Now that they're gone, the closest approximation I discovered this year is The Beths. Good stuff.
   299. Don August(us) Cesar Geronimo Berroa Posted: December 06, 2018 at 02:14 PM (#5794692)
I assume that since the 2018 numbers are out, anything I play now will be on my Spotify unwrapped for 2019.

Starting with

Savages - Adore Life
   300. Master of the Horse Posted: December 06, 2018 at 02:18 PM (#5794694)
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