Indie Fantasy

March 26, 2009

With Fantasy Football a long ways away, and with Fantasy everything else sucking, we have created the obvious next step in “fantasy gaming”…. Fantasy Indie Rock.

Is there any better way to monitor the commodity that has become “indie” than by drafting artists as properties and tallying points?  I don’t think so.  It’s a simple formula:  Their name gets mentioned on Pitchfork or Stereogum news, you get a point. Simple as that.

So me, Curran, Kenny, Matt and Rob sat down and did our inaugural “Indie Rock Draft” this week, and began tallying points.  The scoreboard is on a Google cloud spreadsheet so everyone can make changes and update their rosters as need be.

I’ll keep you updated on it’s progress, but for your enjoyment (and so I can tag the shit out of this post), here’s how the draft went (please note, Matt came late):

Round 1

  1. Curran    Kanye West
  2. Kenny    Wilco
  3. Rob    Animal Collective
  4. Brian    Colin Meloy

Round 2

  1. Brian    M.I.A.
  2. Rob    Lily Allen
  3. Kenny    Radiohead
  4. Curran    The Decemberists

Round 3

  1. Curran    Neko Case
  2. Kenny    U2
  3. Kroll    Conor Oberst
  4. Rob    Girltalk
  5. Brian    Death Cab For Cutie

Round 4

  1. Brian    Peter, Bjorn & John
  2. Rob    Sigur Ros
  3. Kroll    Ladyhawke
  4. Kenny    Andrew Bird
  5. Curran    Grizzly Bear

Round 5

  1. Curran    Jane’s Addiction
  2. Kenny    Bruce Springsteen
  3. Matt   Jesus Lizard
  4. Rob    Dangermouse
  5. Brian    No Age

Supplemental Draft

  1. Matt    Crystal Stilts
  2. Matt    Pains of Being Pure At Heart

The strategies were interesting… do you draft small-time bands with their SXSW stock rising, do you try to take a big guess on who’s going to be announced at Lollapalooza (or the billion of other festivals doing press releases),  do you risk taking the frontman of a band in the hopes you can double-up on points for their solo AND group material, or pick-up a producer who has his hands in a LOT of recordings but sometimes isn’t mentioned in shorter news articles.  Ohhhh, strategery.

If you’re curious, here are the top-5 scorers as of yesterday, 3/25:

1. Animal Collective – 6
2. Dinosaur Jr – 5
3. Death Cab For Cutie (tie) – 4
3. Passion Pit (tie) – 4
5. *13 bands tied with 3 points each* Beach House, Billy Corrigan, Black Lips, Conor Oberst, Department of Eagles, Dirty Projectors, Grizzly Bear, Jimmy Chamberlin, Kanye West, No Age, Soundgarden, Vivian Girls, Yeah Yeah Yeahs

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The Never-Ending Polaroid

June 9, 2008

People take pictures of each other / Just to prove that they really existed.

-The Kinks
Bob Nanna (Braid, Hey Mercedes, City on Film) has allowed the world to see his on-going “Never-Ending Polaroid” project, now on display until July 8th at the Threadless retail store on Broadway. Nanna, along with tourmate Brian Shorttall came up with the idea nearly a decade ago, and have kept the visual string going much longer than anyone ever anticipated.

It should be stressed that these are Polaroid images, which is significant in a few ways. Firstly, I like the juxtaposition of the medium; the immediate gratification a Polaroid image provides, combined with the longevity and diligence this project demanded. Also, because these are Polaroids, each one of these photos in one-of-a-kind, unedited, and unphotoshopable, pulled from the camera by Bob (or in some cases Brian), and most likely shared with the subject before it was dutifully filed away.

On one level, the project can be appreciated by scope alone. I can’t imagine years of lugging a camera around, and keeping track of EVERY picture its ever taken (as well as the name and relationship to the subject). But a further significance is embodied in the photos because Nanna, a journeyman of the emo/indie scene, is behind the lens. The names and faces of recent rock history pop up in-between Bob’s family, friends, co-workers and roommates. Keep your eyes peeled for members of Fugazi, Death Cab for Cutie, Jets to Brazil, Weezer, Get Up Kids and a bazillion other indie bands and kids captured in a never-ending string of picture-in-picture.