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Desktop Confessional

I See Stars

Thursday, January 31, 2008
12:11 PM

Just a quick note before I forget.

One of my favourite local bands Estrella will be launching their self-titled debut at Centro (next to KL Sentral) at 8pm TONIGHT (31 Jan). It's a free event, and you'll get to see performances by not only Estrella but by several other acts like Otam and Seven. And to end the night, a DJ set by Poof!. (Not a typo, it's really poof exclamation mark. So cute!)

I first heard Estrella's stuff when I used to frequent the singer-songwriter nights of Troubadours. Subsequently I bought the album Voices From Next Door, a compilation of local singer-songwriters and I loved, loved, loved Estrella's contribution to it. A melancholic, acoustic number called "Take It Slow". It was a slow burner ... sensual, jazzy and groovy. Did I say love? LOVE.

That track and nine more are on Estrella, the album. It's a lovely release; enjoyable, accessible and very breezy. If you like indie, jazz, or indie jazz - please do check them out at their MySpace or AMP.

(This post has been edited to remove tracks.)


Wednesday, January 30, 2008
10:54 PM

Do you Google yourself?

I admit that I do it every few months. Just to see what kind of search results would come up. I did it again a few days ago. I was surprised to see what resulted actually. If you knew enough info about me (my full name for example), one search on Google and you can roughly figure out where I work, my political viewpoints, where I graduated. Scary no? And what's this I hear about Facebook being our generation's Big Brother? Conspiracy theory? You decide - watch it.

Anyway on this exercise of vanity, I stumbled upon this blog entry and it referred to this mini-review I wrote about Carl's Jr when it first opened in 1 Utama. It was for the company's blog and was done very informally. I wrote that I loved their Double Portobello Mushroom burger, yada yada. Well, the blogger read that entry and decided to check out Carl's Jr and found it disappointing. Which is fine and dandy, because a review is a personal opinion and anyone is welcomed to disagree.

What was hard to swallow though was when he/she implied that I was probably paid to write that review. Now, that's just unfair. I paid for that meal ... all RM35 of it. I suppose what I should've done was added that disclaimer at the bottom of my review. A rookie mistake. I've certainly learnt from that.

Another thing I've learnt from this episode was the impact of what I write. I've been working in the media for almost a year now, but until very recently, I had no inkling of the influence of my role. I honestly did not realize just how much I could sway a decision. Which begs the question: how SHOULD one approach issues/events/reviews? Should you be harsh and judgmental, so readers will be pleasantly surprised when they experience it for themselves? Or, should you be all happy-thoughts-and-unicorns and be positive about everything - but get slack when a reader feels cheated by your words?

It's a tough balance to strike, and I don't feel it coming naturally to me yet. It's something I have to work on this year, along with the resolve to make full use of my influence - I can really do some damage. And by 'damage', I mean good. But of course.


And on to some music! I wonder sometimes - if I was in a band, how would I want it to sound like? The answer? A lot like Bishop Allen. Their track "Rain" is a lot of things at once - upbeat, melodic, cynical, moody, hopeful. It's in the tune and the words.

And by the way, I am in a band. It's called The Pageant! We were number 36 in Top Favourites (Today 30/1) - People & Blogs - Australia. HAHAH. What the fuck, seriously. The things you do for giggles.

Coming Soon

Wednesday, January 23, 2008
11:58 PM

I have so much to blog about: Carl's Jr's crappy service, retarded clubbers and Cloverfield, to name but a few. But I can't seem to find time to spew and rant. Typical. I need to find some space and do all these things I promise myself I would.

I'm updating simply because I heard some exciting news. Was doing a story on concerts that are coming up soon in the region and got really worked up by it. By the end of it I swear I wanted to clean out my bank account just to go for them all. Thankfully (or not), I got a hold on myself.

So we all know Switchfoot is performing soon. I don't mind them. I really enjoyed stuff like "Learning to Breathe" and "Only Hope". Sappy, but sweet. Singing along to them is very fulfilling, actually.

Anyway I called up Mak from Soundscape Records to confirm this rumour I heard: Explosions in the Sky live in Kuala Lumpur.

Yes people. Explosions are confirmed to play on 19 February. They can't confirm venue yet but hey, at least their presence is guaranteed. I'm excited! I'm not a huge fan of post-rock (as I said, I like sing-alongs) but I have to admit that I get really swept away by Explosions's atmospherics. And I heard they are AWESOME live. Can't wait.

Also coming soon to our shores are Swedish acts Club 8 and Pelle - 25 January, which is this Friday. Tickets are still available so go get them! I think I'd be missing this because I have a media dinner to attend. I've not heard much about Pelle but Club 8 is lovely. You can read more about them here.

12:15am. I am going to watch 10 Things I Hate About You and mourn for Heath Ledger. Are you as shocked as I was?

Edit: Well EITS is confirmed. 19 Feb at Ruums. Getcha tickets at Ruums or Rock Corner outlets. RM110 a pop (pre-sale). RM130 at the door.

"Open Minded"

Monday, January 07, 2008
1:20 AM

You learn a lot about people when you go through the classifieds. It is, after all, a section entirely dedicated to people's needs and wants. At work, I share the duties of cleaning up our classifieds section. Basically what I do is delete spam, delete requests for swingers, delete gay porn promotions, delete straight porn promotions, delete anything to do with swapping girlfriends, 'social escorts', and the list goes on and on and on. Believe me, it's as tedious as it sounds. I kind of go into a zone when I do it ... my mind blanks out and my fingers do all the clicking (surely I will get carpal tunnel soon). It's strangely fulfilling.

If there's one term that's over-used to death in classifieds, it is "open minded". It pops up everywhere. It's one of those things that are just suitable for any occasion. Like a pair of quality jeans.

"Looking for open-minded housemate!"
"Seeking open-minded female for companionship."
"Couple looking for adventurous people. Open mind encouraged."

Because of how often I see this phrase, I automatically think open mind = SEXXXXXX AND SINNNNN. My brain's all messed up inside with it. If a guy was to ask me if I considered myself open-minded, I'd probably kick him in the gonads for sexual harassment. Ok just kidding, I'm not that huge of a prude. I'm actually ... do I dare say it ... quite open-minded.

On Mosaic

I'm feeling kinda mellow and tired - it's after 2am and I'm still awake, with an early morning event tomorrow. I've been browsing through the line-up of this year's Mosaic Music Festival and though Feist didn't make it on the confirmed list, it still looks really good. I'm not sure if I'll be able to attend it (no $$$), but if I could I'd definitely check out The Bird and the Bee. I really love their brand of pop ... so dreamy, so whimsical, so pretty. Hearing it live would be just awesome.

And because it's become some sort of a habit these days, I'd end this blog post with one of their songs, a cover of the Bee Gees track. They've got better songs but I'm too lazy to upload it at the moment. Also added the song "Challengers" by The New Pornographers as it kind of reflects my mood at the moment. Neko Case's vocals here are just perfect.

Good night everyone! Have a great week ahead.

Superbad and a super band

Wednesday, January 02, 2008
7:46 PM

I went back to work today, after a long break. Trust me when I say that it was awful waking up in the morning. I contemplated ponteng-ing work before I remembered that I wasn't in college anymore. In fact, I haven't been a student for over a year. Goddamn, how fast a year goes by. There's no way I can simply NOT go to work because "I didn't feel like it". And a week's leave is probably the longest break I had this year. Unlike my brother, a student, who's been on break since November and resumes semester in freaking March! I hope he appreciates his days of bumming because they are NUMBERED, bro.

But I exaggerate, as usual. Work wasn't that bad since practically no one was around. Only two calls came in and my inbox was so clear! What I would give to have such laidback days all year round. I finally got to watch "Superbad" which deserves all the praise it has received. As far as high school movies go, this one tells an awesome, vulgar tale about the awkwardness of that experience. I loved it. I can't believe I LOLed my head off overs lines like these:

"You scratch our backs, we'll scratch yours."
"Well Jules, the funny thing about my back is that it's located on my cock." *awkward laugh, cringing*

(Yeah I memorized it. ZOMG.)

Adlin and I went to get more DVDs after work, so tomorrow it's between "Fido" (about a domesticated zombie!) and "Everything's Gone Green", which is supposedly Canada's answer to "Garden State".

Work is indeed very stressful right now.


On the music front, my wish for 2008 is for this band to explode into popularity.

The Ting Tings (MySpace) hail from the UK and consist of just two members - Katie (hot as hell, as you can see from the picture) and Jules. Despite their small number, they make music that is huge on hooks and beats. I had one listen of "That's Not My Name" in mid-2007 and could not get enough of it. I'm still listening to it today! Luckily for me, they've released more demos since then to keep me happy until their album drops. But until then, I'm dying to hear their songs played at TAG or something so that I can freakout to it with my friends. Check them out below.

What a long post. Told ya I'll be blogging more regularly ... and long-windedly. ^_^