Monday, December 31, 2012

2012 in Music

I wish I could think straight enough to say something interesting about the albums on this list, but I'm afraid I'm out of gas for the year. Too much time trying to figure out how to speed up conservation easement sales and not enough time thinking about music. :\ 

Lots of new artists that I was surprised to discover, as well as some familiar faces.

1. Swans - The Seer
2. Cloud Nothings - Attack on Memory
3. Killer Mike - R.A.P. Music
4. POS - We Don't Even Live Here
5. Miguel - Kaleidoscope Dream
6. Screaming Females - Ugly
7. Dr. John - Locked Down
8. Panopticon - Kentucky
9. Guided by Voices - Class Clown Spots a UFO
10. Godspeed You! Black Emperor - Allelujah! Don’t Bend! Ascend!
11. AC Newman - Shut Down The Streets
12. Macklemore & Ryan Lewis - The Heist
13. Guided by Voices - The Bears for Lunch
14. Chromatics - Kill For Love
15. Cat Power - Sun
16. Bob Mould - Silver Age
17. Grimes - Visions
18. Cut Hands - Black Mamba
19. El-P - Cancer 4 Cure
20. Lambchop - Mr. M
21. Frankie Rose - Interstellar
22. Perfume Genius - Put Your Back N 2 It
23. Dan Deacon - America
24. Daughn Gibson - All Hell
25. Grizzly Bear - Shields
26. Sleigh Bells - Reign of Terror
27. Leonard Cohen - Old Ideas
28. Divine Fits - A Thing Called Divine Fits
29. Acephalix - Deathless Master
30. Field Music - Plumb
31. Purity Ring - Shrines
32. Wild Nothing - Nocturne
33. The Boats - Ballads of the Research Department
34. Pilot to Gunner - Guilty Guilty
35. Sun Kil Moon - Among the Leaves
36. The Men - Open Your Heart
37. DIIV - Oshin
38. Dirty Projectors - Swing Lo Magellan
39. Passion Pit - Gossamer
40. Japandroids - Celebration Rock
41. Tame Impala - Lonerism
42. Converge - All We Love We Leave Behind
43. Pig Destroyer - Book Burner
44. Om - Advaitic Songs
45. Brian Eno - Lux
46. Lee Ranaldo - Between The Times & The Times
47. Metz - Metz
48. Deerhoof - Breakup Song
49. High on Fire - De Vermis Mysteriis
50. Pallbearer - Sorrow and Extinction

Friday, December 28, 2012

Slowness

It is a strange sensation being in a firm full of people who are furiously working on end-of-the-year projects while I just walk in slow motion. In case you haven't heard, rich people might have until the end of the year to transfer up to $10.24 million tax-free. That opportunity probably goes away at the end of the year, given Congress's lack of ability to cooperate on much of anything, whether it's a treaty to effectively export US disability rights norms to the rest of the world or an attempt to maintain the full faith and credit of the federal government.

I don't really have the multimillionaire clientele that justifies this crazy amount of work. I'm doing a handful of mostly non-billable projects about simple estate planning. I don't mind the work, but it lacks the urgency that keeps me from getting drowsy when I think for more than twenty minutes about estate planning.

But even if I had the urgent, exciting work, it wouldn't amount to much in the long run. That's not what I want out of my life right now. I would like to stop feeling sorry for myself, spinning my wheels, and feeling burnt out on things that aren't of much importance from my perspective and to just start creating things that really interest me. The only thing stopping me from reading and writing about things that I care about is my fear and my constant self-definition as a static being, rather than someone who is capable of becoming something else. I do have a baby to take care of, but I can make time if it's something that I care about.

It would be sad if billable work for rich people were the only thing left to give me passion and excitement. I want more out of this than that. This whole end of the year crush is as fake as events get. It kind of mirrors my broader attempts to inject energy into my life and overcoming how burnt out I feel by focusing on artificial stimulants. E.g. I'm depressed about the prospects for real political engagement, so I've resigned myself to cynicism, ignoring useful stories and focusing on whatever silly or snarky event this week excites my outrage.

I'm getting so tired of it.