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2006.04.13

[Call_&_Response_#_13: New_Directions?]

Um... Would anyone be horribly disappointed if I changed things up here at WTC and transformed the whole thing into a shrine to skinny Britpop arse-waggler and erstwhile Pulp frontman, Jarvis Cocker?

Cocker

Because, I think I'm retroactively in love with him since I watched a video of him singing "I Spy" on the interweb's greatest invention ever, YouTube, and I think it's pretty clear that he is a big flaming genius. Truth be told, all other things being equal**, I've always preferred a tall, lanky man with pale skin, big feet, long fingers, and a razor-sharp wit to a short guy with huge-mongous muscles and a crew cut, wielding a blunt instrument...

Anyone mind?

Oh! And, I found out that Mr. Cocker has had a Goth phase:

Spooner

So, I think it could be a smooth transition for all of us Gothemo fans...

Don't worry, though, you guys! I still love Trent, and the good lord in heaven knows that I would never toss his blunt instrument out of bed for eating crackers. If you're feeling distressed about eminent change-ups, I think you should all go watch this fucking hilarious display of totally gay hair circa 1990, in which Trent and his stick-like legs rock out a little "Get Down, Make Love". As for me, I'm going to go right back to mainlining Pulp videos, and redesigning the site to make it ALL ABOUT JARVIS.

But wait! This is a [Call_&_Response], right? Well, I guess the question is, when you aren't taking your Vitamin T, what are you taking?

**which they aren't, FYI.

Posted by Dierdre ~ in call_&_response / with_questions | Permalink

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Comments

Well, I do love me some good Britpop, and Pulp is high on the list. But surely Damon Albarn is hotter?

Is this Call and Response about what else we listen to or who else we drool over? Or both?

Posted by: maise | Apr 13, 2006 6:57:39 AM

Both, man. Damon Alban? I'll check it out.

Posted by: Dierdre | Apr 13, 2006 7:10:05 AM

Ok, I've checked Albarn out, and I'm sticking with Jarvis Cocker. Also, his name is JARVIS COCKER.

You know, back in the heady days of Britpop, I never knew what any of these guys looked like, with the exception of the Gallagher brothers. I'm going to have to do some homework.

Posted by: Dierdre | Apr 13, 2006 7:13:33 AM

Well, Damon's definitely prettier, anyway. I typically like my celebrity crushes pretty, like Elijah Wood!

So musically, when I'm not compulsively listening to the NIN catalogue, I've been hitting Otis Redding a bit more lately. When I'm feeling a bit downtrodden, I always turn to "Try a Little Tenderness" because Otis understands *everything*. Because he tragically died in a plane crash at the age of 26, he is an Oscar-winning biopic waiting to happen.

I've been loving Interpol lately. All of their songs remind me of the feeling one gets when one has a really urgent unrequited love for someone. You know...those moments where you're standing in a smoky bar, exchanging banter, and you're enjoying yourself but despairing at the same time. I don't know why I enjoy feeling that way during casual moments, but I do.

And the new Dresden Dolls album comes out soon! Ever since the first time I heard them, I've loved them, and whenever I'm listening to them during my commute, my car turns into a giant, moving karaoke machine. Which will probably get me killed one day, but whatevs.

As for celebrity crushes, mine are mostly cinematic. Because except in the case of Trent, I fall in love with a voice and then am later disappointed to find out that the musician isn't as hot as I had imagined. I am forever devoted to Ewan McGregor, even though he hasn't made a decent movie in AGES. And I would totally do Frodo. And hot damn, I wouldn't say no to Clive Owen.

Posted by: maise | Apr 13, 2006 7:22:37 AM

I'm obsessed with The Smiths. Morrissey is not hot, but he makes me so, so happy. Hotties? Just Trent, thanks. But, I do love me some Stephen Malkmus, who has always been dreamy and brilliant.

Posted by: Jane | Apr 13, 2006 7:33:13 AM

But look, Dierdre, Damon is all hairy, just like you like them...

Posted by: maise | Apr 13, 2006 8:04:47 AM

I'm not gonna deny, Maise, that the hairiness is hot. All I'm sayin' is that I've got no feeling for the guy, you know? He doesn't GET me. I mean, I like Blur and Gorillas, but there's nothing compelling about him, really, that I've seen, and good-looking, even nicely hairy guys are really a dime a dozen. It takes some special juice to really slay me, and all I'm sayin' is that Jarvis can totally shake that narrow arse of his, and his songs are so sharp and funny. He could be even more anemic and much uglier, and he's still win.

Having said that, Jarvis is hairy, too. I've seen that shit nicely set off under a sport coat with no shirt under it. You gotta love a sport coat with no shirt under it, dude.

Posted by: Dierdre | Apr 13, 2006 8:48:55 AM

Well, I love Jarvis, but I can't support that hair he's sporting above. This pic of him is a little more my speed.

Posted by: maise | Apr 13, 2006 9:11:44 AM

Ha, my online radio is playing me some Information Society, "What's On Your Mind." Fuck, yeah! Pure energy!

Posted by: maise | Apr 13, 2006 9:19:16 AM

Fair enough. I think he is a guy with a lifetime's worth of questionable hair decisions, but I like the way he wears a tie onstage, and his dance moves, man. Seriously.

Plus: "My name's Jarvis. Jarvis COCKER."

I'm throwing my support behind this picture.

Posted by: Dierdre | Apr 13, 2006 9:24:03 AM

PLEASE FUCKING DO IT.

If y'all are gonna drool, at least drool over somebody that doesn't look like a middle-aged BBQ dad.

Posted by: Gabriel | Apr 13, 2006 9:32:06 AM

OMG, Trent as middle-aged BBQ dad is a deliciously FILTHY concept! Just think about it...it's the annual block party in your cul-de-sac, and Trent's got some "Kiss the cook" apron on, and when everyone is distracted by some neighborhood kid's antics, he reveals to you his UNSPEAKABLE PERVERSION.

Fantastic! Good idea, Gabe!

Posted by: maise | Apr 13, 2006 9:40:28 AM

The latest from the horse's mouth:

Regarding EDIETS, there will be no video released. I made a mistake. The good news is that mistake has acted as a catalyst for me to rethink a number of decisions regarding the direction and position of the band I've made and will be making in the future. The enemies from outside and within have been identified and I am back on track.

Interesting.

Posted by: Jane | Apr 13, 2006 9:44:37 AM

Ok. Forget Jarvis. That made me come.

Posted by: Dierdre | Apr 13, 2006 9:46:47 AM

...and by "that" I meant BOTH Maise's post about BBQ Dad Trent's UNSPEAKABLE PERVERSION and the fact that he scraped the video and made some decisions. Goddammit, I hope this means Rob is fired.

Posted by: Dierdre | Apr 13, 2006 9:50:10 AM

WHAT? COME? Are you fucking HIGH????


Let's see, there have been three proposed videos for this record: THTF, ONLY, and EDIETS.

The first THTF was scrapped (to be replaced by the Sheridan RADIOHEAD ripoff), ONLY was a total fucking lame-ass borefest indulgence by Fincher, and now he's scrapped ANOTHER video.

NOBODY IS STEERING THE FUCKING BOAT. It's a goddamned ghost ship. "Enemies within"? Try you own fucking cluelessness, Trent.

The motherfucker's got no idea how to present himself anymore. FUCK HIM.

Oh, and by the way folks? I was able to get my $60 refunded from the buttfuck Spiral. If you haven't bought tickets and are as fed up with that bullshit as I was, it's totally doable. The Empire of Dirt has truly become the Empire of Shit.

FUCK TRENT REZNOR. LONG LIVE JARVIS.

Posted by: Gabriel | Apr 13, 2006 9:51:08 AM

OMG, I think this is the single funniest thing Trent has ever written:

The enemies from outside and within have been identified and I am back on track.

He hasn't even read the latest edition of Gabriel fanfic(coming very soon!).

Posted by: maise | Apr 13, 2006 10:01:08 AM

Gabriel, Gabriel, Gabriel.

[sigh]

First of all, I don't even really know why artists make videos anymore, seeing as you can never really watch them on TV. I only ever see them online when I think about it, so it makes me wonder what possible promotional value can be gained out of all of that expense. I'm not saying Trent shouldn't do videos at all because I love to look at him in various highly stylized environments, but I don't think his entire career rides on them.

The videos for "THTF" and "Only" are no Mark Romanek production, that's for damn sure, but they are serviceable and at least not fucking ridiculous, like "Deep" or "Starfuckers, Inc." Consider it incredible progress that Trent can look at a video and say "Jesus, that sucks."

Meanwhile, Gabriel Miller, you were a Spiral member and failed to raise any hell there? FOR SHAME.

Posted by: maise | Apr 13, 2006 10:14:43 AM

Right, Maise? I fucking LOVE IT that Trent, if he thinks the video sucks ass, then he will just CHUCK IT. I also think it's brilliant that he might be thinking about some senses in which his presentation is not representing him well. If he's had some kind of epiphany, I'm delighted to hear it.

Like I said, I just hope it mean that fratboy loser idiot Rob Sheridan is fucking fired, because his latest internet project is fucking repugnant. I mean, I see that he's saying that the revolting nature of what he is cataloging is... revolting; but he's still the guy spending enough time on that shit to UPDATE A WEBSITE EVERY DAY.

Dude. And WE'RE supposed to be ashamed of ourselves over WTC? WHATEVS.

Posted by: Dierdre | Apr 13, 2006 10:22:37 AM

The issue isn't that Trent has some sort of great courage to chuck things that don't work -- hell, ANYBODY can do that.

The issue that Trent has so little idea of what to do with his work these days that he doesn't pre-emptively say, "No, we don't need a video", or "No, we don't want this concept", or "Yes, we want this concept", and be able to stick by it.

The man DOESN'T KNOW WHAT HE'S DOING. And judging from the commentaries on the Romanek DVD, he never fucking did.

Trent Reznor's image isn't a meticulously cultured thing -- it was a fucking accident. he got lucky. Left to his own devices, Trent thinks people like Rob Sheridan and his fat chicks website are awesome.

Once again, I am proved right: TRENT'S A FUCKING CLUELESS RETARD. VIVA LA JARVIS!

Posted by: Gabriel | Apr 13, 2006 10:29:29 AM

The man DOESN'T KNOW WHAT HE'S DOING. And judging from the commentaries on the Romanek DVD, he never fucking did.

What, he's supposed to be David fucking Lean now? Why wouldn't he give himself over to direction and other people's visual ideas when making videos, considering the fact that he's a MUSICIAN? Just because he writes the song "Closer" means that he *has* to come up with the idea of the crucified monkey all by himself? If someone says to him, "Hey, maybe we should crucify a monkey," he can't accept that idea because he hadn't already invented it in his big genius head?

Trent Reznor's image isn't a meticulously cultured thing

Precisely. That's why I love him. We've seen him look and act like a total dork. We've seen him be bitchy and ill-tempered. We've seen him make huge mistakes in the image department. He's not saving Malaysian orphans because his publicist told him it would be a good idea.

Somehow he manages to reveal enough about himself while maintaining the mystery that gives me so much comic material to work with. What's to complain about?

Posted by: maise | Apr 13, 2006 10:44:52 AM

I love how you always go relentless literal when you know I'm right, Maise.

Trent doesn't need to come up with all the ideas of a video, M, but one would thing he would have a guiding hand -- or least some sort of artistic participation. You know, an artist gets to sign off on the treatment for a music video before they get to the set. Different concepts are offered, rewrites are done, and the artist gets a say.

Trent got lucky with Mark Romanek. Pretty much every video other those two -- all videos in which Trent had creative input -- have been pretty godawful embarassing. Trent signed off to be the Green Cookie Monster in Deep. He signed off to be Julien Water Filing Cabinet Donkey Boy. He signed off on March of the Midgets. These all seemed like good ideas to him at the time.

And right now, the idea of having Rob Sheridan run his aesthetic empire also seems like a good idea.

Which, of course, leads to one inevitable question -- TRENT HAS PRETTY SHITTY TASTE. And furthermore, TRENT DOESN'T HAVE AN OVERALL VISION.

Did he have a specific vision in the past? I used to think he did. Now it's becoming clear it was all just sorta blind luck. Which, of course, makes the current crapfest make complete sense.

Posted by: Gabriel | Apr 13, 2006 10:59:37 AM

Different concepts are offered, rewrites are done, and the artist gets a say.

Exactly. And sometimes things look better on paper than they do as a finished product. "Ooh, I'm part of some secret sinister underwater experiment? Cool. Ew, look at the way my feet turned out in this."

These things happen, and Trent is now doing the right thing by preventing us from witnessing pretentious, unflattering inanity.

We all know that Trent's cognitive functioning wasn't quite optimal at the time when things like the "Deep" video were made. And he was actively drunk/high when making the (classic, in my opinion) MOTP video. Sure, not the wisest decision, but something that we now know wasn't entirely in his power to control at the time.

Oh, Trent doesn't have shitty taste. Okay, maybe he's had some really questionable hairstyles and shirts. And maybe he's dissed bands that I really like. And maybe he hasn't picked the best friends...and that thing with Courtney Love...

WHATEVER. When it comes to what really matters--his best and most important artistic talent, making music--he is usually spot on. I mean, you take this guy, fresh out of detox and looking like absolute shit, and he goes and makes "Still." Damn.

I'm not sure what you mean by "overall vision." What is it you're missing? Consistency in his choice of leather pants? What?

Posted by: maise | Apr 13, 2006 11:14:36 AM

Yes, he goes out and makes "still". WOOT! NEWS FLASH -- half of it was covers, and the other half was expanded demos he wrote for "One Hour Photo" -- which he wrote before he got clean.

It's really easy to take electric songs and make them acoustic and make them entertaining. Trust me, I've done it. And if you're talented like Reznor, I'm sure it's easy to make them good. So "still" ain't all that impressive.

And by overall vision what do i mean? It used to seem that Reznor had a game plan for his entire Empire, and meticulously controlled every detail. That he had a hand in every artistic decision.

I'm not "missing" something now, Maise; I'm just realizing that's not that case. He's not as inclusive an artist as I used to think. And given that his choices of collaborators are so fucking lame now (sheridan), his concert presentation is recycled and redundant, his record is -- to my ears -- 50% filler, and he doesn't even have a firm enough grip to be able to approve or veto a visual concept (because let's face it -- THTF may have been "serviceable", but it was fairly impotent, and "Only" straight up SUCKED, Maise -- that's 0 for 3 by my count)... well given all that, the guy's just drifting further down the spiral of creative irrelevance.

Posted by: Gabriel | Apr 13, 2006 11:33:04 AM

Goddamn. Reading all that just makes me feel so... TIRED. I mean, I would love to mount a long-winded defense, because I really, really disagree very fucking strongly about this alleged "creative irrelevance," and think you, Gabriel, are pretty much living in the world's biggest fucking glass house when it comes to lobbing these stones, but whatevs.

What I will say is this: Trent, more than ever, is feeling his way these days, and I have to say that I find that to be the essence, pretty much, of the most moving and courageous thing about it. I love the uncertainty and ambiguity that permeates WT, I love that he is willing to scrap huge projects if they just aren't right, and I love that he is at it like he is with his BBQ Dad figure and big fucking 1994 boots to fill.

I've always felt that this moment in the Reznorian Saga is very transitional, and unlike you, I enjoy the journey -- seeing beauty in the process, with its stops and starts -- rather than seeing everything as an outcome. None of which is to say that I don't love the fuck out of everything I've seen him do in the past two years, because I do. So, before you simplistically jump to the conclusion that I value that which is transitional as something less than that which is completely sewn up, I DON'T.

But, Goddamn. Y A W N.

Posted by: Dierdre | Apr 13, 2006 12:19:42 PM

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