Morning Music: Adrian Belew

Lone RhinoI’m at a loss as to what to do for music this week. The truth is that my day job is taking a lot of time. This is good and bad. There’s been a lot of interesting stuff. But also, my boss asked me to write a resource page about XML. I can’t escape the feeling that she gets a slight thrill out of giving me projects that are nearly impossible. Right before Christmas, she had me write a thousand words about SMIL. I know you haven’t heard about it (unless I’ve complained earlier), because it’s a project that kind of started and ended 15 years ago without ever working quite right. All of these projects are difficult for different reasons. XML is hard because it is either trivial or enormously complicated. In order to really understand XML, you have to understand XSLT, and so on. Not that I don’t love it. But when you start with a blank screen, it is very lonely. (The reason I, an editor, write these things is because I’m the only one in the company who can, apparently. So lonely indeed.)

Anyway, I’m going to start with Adrian Belew and see how it goes. I’m not much of a fan. I admire him, of course. I especially loved the work that he did on the best Talking Heads album Remain in Light. And the song “The Lone Rhinoceros” has been going through my head for days. It’s off his first solo album, Lone Rhino. I do rather like the rhyme of species with feces. But the main rhyme offends my sensibilities: “I’m the lone rhinoceros; there ain’t one hell of a lots of us.” If he had just used “lot” instead of “lots” it would be fine. And the rest of the lyrics are really quite clever.

More important, there is something amazingly compelling about the song. It isn’t just guitar processing. I love the rhythm section. It kind of reminds me of another Talking Heads album, Fear of Music. So here’s the song. I don’t know what I’m going to do tomorrow. Maybe another Adrian Belew song. Or maybe Joe Satriani.

9 thoughts on “Morning Music: Adrian Belew

  1. All I know about this guy is that Trent Reznor of NIN was super happy he agreed to play something (drums I think) on The Fragile the only double album I have listened to more than 300 times. I get mildly obsessed with things.

    I would have suggested using music from video games. It would be something different for you but then again, they may use synthesizers and I know you are no fan. :D

    However some are just beautiful to my ears like this one from Witcher III: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2bSk-8C76dc
    Even with my utter lack of taste. :-)

    • I saw a documentary on game composers; it was interesting.

      I don’t hate synthesizers. I hate the DX-7. It was way overused in the 1980s and destroyed much otherwise good music.

      Interesting song. I might get into it if I listened to it more. But the graphics remind me of that rule about how we are fine with robots that don’t look like humans and look exactly like them. But ones that look mostly like humans are creepy. These characters are creepy.

        • Oh, it was fine. I just listened to it while looking at another tab. There is a beautiful Celtic song in Rob Roy that is sung by a woman, which is crosscut with a terrible injustice done elsewhere. No good video of it. So here is the scene where Hillary Clinton would have won and Obama and I would have been killed:

          • Yep. She would have fought, he would have wiggled out of even being there, and you would be silently enduring in your cell.

            Oddly enough, I had a prosecutor with a somewhat similar injury-guy nearly cut off his arm when he was on his cell phone. Sweet kid, horrible prosecutor.

            • One thing is for sure: I would not have been in that fight. He didn’t have to be there. Screw honor! At least that kind of honor. His wife wanted her husband much more than her honor avenged. This is discussed rather well in the film. As I keep thinking about the film, I’m liking it more and more. I’m going to have to get a copy and watch it again.

              • I remember reading a lot of romance when I was a teenager (what?! I was a teenage girl! It is allowed!) and the men would go on and on about their honor while the woman were like “are you being stupid on purpose about this?”
                I didn’t get it then and I don’t get it now. At least one author actually pointed out that the only person that can humiliate you is yourself. If you don’t care about “submitting” then you are not being humiliated now are you?

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