A cheer people shouted!
Barcelona!
Hurrah!

A city obsessed with its Gaudi legacy and beautiful architecture, probably one of the more stunning large metropolitan areas I’ve ever seen. Everywhere we walked there random statues. cathedrals and fountains. We stayed on a stirp called “La Rambla”, a very active part of the city where there is an insane amount of “living statues” (people dressed up as statues, who dance/ride bikes/meow/do-whatever for you in exchance for some change) and additionaly, temporary pet shops where people sell everything from bunnies, to ferrets to pigeons to chickens.

…Click below for the full story (pictures and captions included, hurrah!)

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That quote, courtesy of a very drunk high schooler who led us to a sandwhich place on our first night at San Sebastian…

Anywho, San Sebastian this tiny city right on the water, is probably one of my favorite stops along this trip so far.

The interesting thing about it was that it was our first part of the trip where we really felt like foreigners. It was a different language, cuisine and way of life. Dublin was crazy, but we felt too comfortable there.

Digressing! Sorry!

Click to read the whole story below…

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Dublin!!! (boring title!)

June 16th, 2007


 

 

 

Dublin

Dublin, the first stop of the journey.

Upon first landing we quickly realized how beautiful and old this city is. Its also quite tiny and intimate. Everyone seems to obey the crossing of roads and there is very little if any trash on the sidewalks. Additionally, everyone was amazingly nice to us and helped us get to the Avalon Hostel, where we stayed in a room with 30 some-what-beds. I could go on about dublin, but it would probably bore you.

Click below for the story of Dublin, told with both pictures and text. Aye!

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A Short time in France

June 15th, 2007

Hello friends. We arrived in Paris several days ago and we depart tomorrow for Brussels. In the meantime we noticed that the Parisians were friendlier than we expected. About 10% of them cannot stand to speak English — these are the bad apples that you always hear about. The rest will help you out to the best of their abilities.

In Brussels we’ll have good internet access so expect to see some pictures soon.

Barcelona!

June 10th, 2007

Hello friends from sunny Barcelona, where the internet access is poor but the people are quite nice. It looks like tonight will be an early night, but we have seen much since we arrived this morning.

We just went along with a sizeable parade of expat Argentines, celebrating the victory of the soccer team from San Lorenzo. It was a lot of fun and Ethan got some nice pictures.

We’ve also finally got watches. They were a huge ripoff, but as I told the shopowner in broken Spanish, on a trip through Europe knowing the time is worth a lot.

Vamos a País Basco

June 8th, 2007

Hola hola hola. We’re currently in a Pensión (a few apartments that are rented out as hotel rooms) in San Sebastián, Spain. Last night was a kind of nutty time with Professional wrestlers in Dublin, which hopefully Ethan will talk about in a future post. Today was a lot of transportation, and a lot of re-learning of Spanish.

The people are extremely friendly and very forgiving of your difficulties with the language, so long as you make it clear that you are trying. We ran into two groups of locals. The first were some people who were graduating from colegio (kind of like high school?) and were pretty drunk. One was much less inebriated and interested in practicing his English — he helped us out quite a bit and taught us about the local scene. In particular, he told us NOT to call it San Sebastián. It’s Donostia, the Basque language name for the city. Also, it’s not Spain. It’s Basque Country. Mixing up these names is almost criminal here.

We left these fellows (well, some of them ran away from us actually) and got some food on our own. After exploring by the water for a while — which is absolutely beautiful — we ran into a bunch of people about our age drinking and fishing by a dock. These guys were extremely friendly and many of them spoke English pretty well.

They were interested in the fact that we were from New York. The first thing that came up was how we felt on 9/11 (they were very empathetic and curious about our reactions). We eventually got around to the US political situation, in particular our thoughts about gun control. They were big fans of Michael Moore.

Probably the coolest part was getting to hear their views of the political situation in the Basque country. Those who we spoke with all wanted independence but were very against achieving it through violence. They were upset that mass Spanish media painted the Basque region as filled with violence, but also regretted ETA’s recent breaking of its ceasefire. These are things you can read about on the BBC but hearing people talk about it firsthand is much, much more informative.

Tomorrow will be much much more exploring, and perhaps we will see the fellows from later last night again. Overall, I am really enjoying this city and am not particularly looking forward to leaving it behind tomorrow night.

Greetings from Dublin!

June 6th, 2007

Pip Pip!

Hello everyone! We have landed safely. And went on a grand stroll of Dublin. Some observations.

1. Dublin is small.
2. Dublin is very pretty and old.
3. Old men in Dublin look and dress like whalers-of-yore.
4. Starting an applause for students making in the grass at Trinity College gets you new friends/brings the community together.
5. Some churches are scary in the way they depict saints.

Thats all for now. We haven’t slept in a bit and are about to go on a musical pub crawl (which means either everyone sings and drinks, or the pub buidling actually has vocal chords or there are live bands. whichever one, we’ll be more than satisified) so we should probably get some sleep.

<3,
e.

Trip round two!

June 5th, 2007

Well friends, so it begins again. I’m sitting in Newark airport on the wireless. For some reason I have an account on the airport’s pay internet service. Don’t ask me how!

Ethan is already in the air, probably a few hundred miles over the Atlantic by now. We’re both flying into Dublin airport. Ethan tells me he should be passed out asleep by the baggage claim when I arrive.

Next time I check in I should be in Europe. Stay tuned for wacky updates…

Oh yes. I must remind you. the MAP is back!.

A Utopian Musical Vision

March 23rd, 2007

I had this idea recently, and I wanted to know what some people thought, or maybe what I could do with this idea. But I’m putting it out there so that it becomes public domain and not something that I keep bottled up away from everyone else, so that if I can’t make it happen, hopefully someone else will…

I was thinking about the whole nature of field recordings and how in reality, when you listen to sound samples of anything from the urban environment to recording the resonating frequency of a can on a mountain or something. I listen to a lot of this stuff and it bothers me because in a way, the act of recording puts up this glass wall between you (the listener) and the Earth sounds being recorded. So, I was thinking of this sort of movement of bringing music and nature back together without power. With acoustic instruments or even non-amplified, non-instrumental sound objects and concerts in the woods, or by a river or a pond. Or on some rocks, or a beach. Its like this utopic communion of human-influenced sound (ie: the sound of guitar and violin strings, etc) and sounds that humans cannot manipulate (ie: bird song, waves crashing) AND the difference between the sound of a guitar in a room, with metal and wood in the area and sound resonating with open air and off the grass and rocks.

So maybe I could set up a minimal drums, violin and guitar trio and some noise, and try to do a tour playing gardens and parks and beaches and not charge admission but donation. Is it doable?

Didn’t think you’d ever be called a scoundrel again, eh? Thought the nineteenth century was long gone? Wrongo!

The reason I am attacking you (the you who is probably nobody because this website got dropped faster than an unwanted pregnancy in a McDonald’s lavatory) is because of this very fact: you hate We, Burning Giraffes. And that’s fine. Becuase frankly i hate it to. I hate funny, sexy men, with nothing better to do than to yap yap yap away on the internet, flexing their intellectual and chastizing muscles, while we spout off about things that you philistines just couldn’t possibly wrap your meaty heads around. Okay okay. This is not the case at all. I am up late writing a story about a guy who keeps cloning his ex-girlfriend and killing them. Wow, so original…yeah, i know it’s not…but i dont care. I’m pretty tired of thinking and it would be dreamy to just kill off these miserable brain cells (making sure to keep the cells that are strictly dedicated to the careers of Don Johnson and Philip Micheal Thomas). But i can’t. My brain is what keeps me pretty.

The thing is that i want to get back on the saddle. Throw on the ol’ wrestling unitard and rob a liquor store. You get what I’m saying? Of coures you don’t! Savages! You’d knife your own Grandmother and eat her body for a day’s wages wouldn’t you? If yes, then you are on par with me.

Challenge: Listen to the song “Sweet Sunshine” by Beck and tell me you don’t want to hunt him down and like, totally unleash your homies to put their collective steel-toed boot up his ass.

Anyway, i guess you (still unsure of who this could possibly pertain to) would like some information that you could potentially care about after trudging through the ravings of a sleep-deprived skinny white boy?

Here’s some shit you MUST listen to:
Zoe Keating - One Cello x 16 Natoma (Zoe Keating; 2005)

Half-decent looking hippie chick plays the most beautiful Cello music i have ever heard. It’s just her on cello and a loop station with some minor effects. She does this shit live to and I can only imagine it would be orgasmic. This album’s beauty is only outdone by its progressive and simplistic nature. The soundscapes are like, the hottest naked person you’ve ever had in your bed, times a thousand. It’s that good. Check it out. (Oh, she used to be in Rasputina…but…just forget i told you that…)
Victor Bermon - Arriving At Night (Hefty!; 2007)

I just heard this album two days ago and I’m already hooked (thanks Jeremy). Think Mice Parade without Adam Pierce’s spazzy drumming and Kria Brekken’s fuck-me voice. It’s a purely instrumental album with tones of xylophone, glockenshpeil (who cares how it’s spelled?) strings and synth. It’s another beautiful album and should NOT be overlooked. You can go to Hefty’s website and sample a few of the tracks. At least do that much. Pretend to like it. Then buy the cd and listen to it. But seriously…I don’t care what you do.
Hefty! Records: http://www.heftyrecords.com/hefty.php?in_artistid=

Genius/GZA - Liquid Sword (Geffen; 1995)

So one day i felt particularly white and thought (why don’t i have individual albums from every member of the Wu-Tang Clan? Forty-eight hours later I was five albums richer, and my personal favorite was this album (the runners up being Ol’ Dirty Bastard’s “Return to the 36 Chambers: The Dirty Version” Inspectah Deck’s “Controlled Substances”, Method Man’s “Tical”, RZA’s “Afro Samurai Score”, and a close second place Ghostface Killah’s “Iron Man”).  All of those albums are worth checking out, but i found  the GZA to be  particularly underated (and plus it’s damn fun saying his name.  Okay, okay, so i know what you’re gonna say: “we love the sound of ninjas and samurai clanging swords and swearing revenge, but isn’t that what Wu-Tang is for?” And i answer, yes, but who the fuck gets sick of samurai? Yes every Wu-Tang Clan member’s side project sounds like they are trying to say ‘Yes, I can make this music by myself too!’ (eventhough most of the tracks have members of the Wu guest appearancing) but fuck it. It still sounds damn good. Lots of soul samples and really sick beats that tear the roof off twelve years after it exited Geffen’s womb. And if you like good soul music, you have to check out this sick compilation called SHAOLIN SOUL, which is a two-discer, featuring all the soul tracks that the Wu has sampled throughout their mighty career. Ya dig? No? Okay…sorry.

I have to finish my story. Fuck all y’all. More to come? (comics, movies, books, records, ice cream flavors, sexual positions, brands of toothpaste)? IF anyone reads this…comment on it or let me know or something cause i have no idea who you are.