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LITERATURE

 » Full Dark, No Stars - Stephen King's new novella questions mankind's ability to trust others.
[02.21.2011 by Bridget Doyle]

MUSIC

 » The Top 30 Albums of 2010 - Fashionably, fabulously late, our favorite music (and believe me, there was a LOT) of 2010, the year that some have called the best year for music ever. And only some of those fools work here. Plenty of usual suspects, lots of ties and a few surprises that I won't spoil, including our unexpected #1.
[12.24.2010 by The LAS Staff]

MUSIC

 » Live: Surfer Blood/The Drums at Lincoln Hall, Chicago, IL - Remember when Weezer used to put together records that you could sing along to and rock out to? That's what Surfer Blood's show was like!
[11.04.2010 by Cory Tendering]

Music Reviews

Screaming Females - Castle Talk
»Screaming Females
Castle Talk
Don Giovanni
Trent Reznor & Atticus Ross - The Social Network [Original Soundtrack]
»Trent Reznor & Atticus Ross
The Social Network [Original Soundtrack]
The Null Corporation
Deerhunter - Halcyon Digest
»Deerhunter
Halcyon Digest
4AD
No Age - Everything in Between
»No Age
Everything in Between
Sub Pop
Robyn - Body Talk Pt. 1/ Body Talk Pt. 2
»Robyn
Body Talk Pt. 1/ Body Talk Pt. 2
Konichiwa
The Walkmen - Lisbon
»The Walkmen
Lisbon
Fat Possum
Park Avenue Music
For Your Home Or Office
Clairecords

Rating: 7.5/10 ?


October 1, 2004
This is a trap. It's obvious just from the spare electric piano in the first 30 seconds. One song in and I'm already looking over my shoulders - I can just feel it. It's the same jittery feeling I'd get talking to some street hustler who's trying to convince me that if I'll just follow him he'll show me where his car is broken down, he swears. It's like Park Avenue Music is taunting me, daring me to step right into it.

For Your Home Or Office is one of those records that screams out "Evocative!" It has a mostly minimalist sound, with occasional glitch noises and female vocals drenched in reverb - music that just absorbs the atmosphere. And you know what that means for us writers.

This is the siren's call for all writers, the sweet sound that tempts us to crash our ships into the jagged rocks of pretension and purple prose. It begs us to try out every device, every descriptor and every nature-themed metaphor we have in our bag of tricks. We now have our chance to prove Elvis Costello wrong: Writing about music is not only possible, but necessary, and even just as "Evocative!" as our subject. Our dancing will be like creating brand new buildings.

These matters aren't helped by the fact that I love this kind of music. I live in a big city, I lead a relatively busy life and my thoughts race a thousand miles an hour. Spacious, ambient, "Evocative!" music relaxes me and usually helps soothes my worried mind. Park Avenue Music does this as well as anyone here on For Your Home Or Office, in particular on tracks like "Cutter" and "How's Your 401k?"

So, yeah, I could start getting into the abstract imagery that came to mind when listening to this album, or maybe how it brought back some warm and idyllic childhood memory. But I will instead resist the temptation to follow that path - because, really, who the hell wants to read all of that garbage?

Instead, I will avoid these traps and just say that if you are a fan of sparse, yet surprisingly warm, electronic environmental music, you will love For Your Home Or Office as much as I do. And that should be enough.

Reviewed by Dan Filowitz
Dan Filowitz is Toronto-born, New-Jersey-raised, Indiana-University-educated, and Chicago-residing. In addition to his Lost At Sea contributions, Dan is a senior staff writer for political humor site TalkStation.com and the president of ChicagoImprovAnarchy (The CIA) a Chicago-based improv theatre company. We are not mentioning the 9-5 corporate job. Apparently, Dan does not sleep much. Dan Filowitz is the perfect dinner party guest - fun, witty, intelligent, with wide-ranging interests, ecclectic tastes and a winning smile. Just make sure you have coffee available.

See other reviews by Dan Filowitz

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