Saturday, February 16, 2008

Weekend Table-Talk for February 16-17

I. Dizzies Team Member Devin on Dave Marsh's The Beatles' Second Album (at Hey Dullblog)—ouroboric and brilliant:

Dexter’s Capitol mutations, whatever their lack of propriety, decency, or respect for the art of the Beatles — something not even the Beatles were convinced existed at that early date — are lovable, explosive, crass, and exciting albums. Mutated or not, slick with stereophonic grease or not, they are the essence of pop as commerce and con game, gaud and gift, bang for the buck. But because Marsh so hates Dexter, he must make the case for hating Dexter’s mutations — though this is obviously counterintuitive to him, not least because here he is himself making money writing a book about how great one of those mutations is.

II. The Guardian profiles Mountain Goats' maestro John Darnielle:

Today, he is drinking warm ale and discussing his new record, Heretic Pride. It is, he explains, "a much more fun record than I've made in a long time", full of songs about Prince Far I, cheap motels, religious cults and swamp creatures. "Now, there's real kinship between your monsters and your pulp-fiction figures and your cult leaders and all these two-and-a-half dimensional creatures that you can then invest with all these things that you yourself bring to the table," he says with an exuberant thwack, then launches into a tale of Michael Myers and Sax Rohmer and HP Lovecraft and Michel Houellebecq, and of his days as a "scrawny little fella" when an ingrained iggishness prevented him from watching any slasher movies. "It is," he concludes, "a sort of cataloguing of my old obsessions."

III. Bookcase challenge II:

How many books can you ID? (That's NBCC prez John Freeman and agent Nicole Aragi.)

(From an old Bookforum piece)

IV. Dizzyhead Dennis reports from the Berlin Film Festival. (Um, not for us, oddly enough, but for the NYT.)

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Blogger GS said...

My friend wrote that Bookforum piece!

Oddly enough I can't identify anything on their shelves.

Also, Nicole Aragi looks very out-of-sorts for having such an attractive partner.

2:16 PM  
Blogger Levi Stahl said...

Now that's a tough bookcase. Depending on when the article was written, I may have IDed one: on the first fully visible shelf about her head, to the left of the picture frame, that book with the orangey spine might be Javier Marias's Your Face Tomorrow: Fever and Spear.

And a couple of shelves below it and a bit to the right--is that the cloth edition of Orientalism?

8:19 AM  
Blogger Adam Siegel said...

Siri Hustvedt's "What I Loved" on the shelf just below John Freeman's left elbow?

12:34 PM  
Blogger Ed said...

A stack of Tintins near JF's left elbow?

What are those orange-jacketed books to his right?

6:55 PM  
Blogger John Freeman said...

Hey GS, thanks! I think that's actually Nicole's face whenever she has her picture taken (not fond of it). Radhika was really nice. Levi, you're right about the Marias, but that's not it -- we've shifted the books since then, but I'm pretty sure that's Their Eyes Were Watching God. We only have a paperback of Orientalism so no dice there. Adam nailed it with the Hustvedt, and Ed got the Tintins (which are mixed in with Asterix). And the orange-jacketed books to my right are a row of Zane Greys.

9:25 AM  

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