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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
60 Channels
Covert Movements
Supa Crucial Records

Rating: 6/10 ?


October 1, 2004
The bar around the corner from my Chicago apartment is one of my favorites. It has really dim lighting, a long bar made of very deep and dark wood, and sleek-looking wood and metal stools. They serve me my vodka tonics in really nice glassware. It reminds me, in a good way, of when I was growing up and hanging out with my friends at the lounges on the Upper East Side of New York City. The music is always very mellow, very innocuous - which is perfectly appropriate for the atmosphere.

Some types of music seem specifically designed for this type of place. A good example is Covert Movements, an album by DJ and producer The Angel under her 60 Channels moniker. It is an album of downtempo dub, reggae and trip-hop-like songs that would be perfect at any lounge - good music to hear while sipping on a Ketel One martini and checking out nice looking women who look even better in the soft light. It is music that doesn't look to grab your attention, doesn't look to engage you in any way, but instead looks to set the mood and the tone.

Background music, in other words. If I owned a hip lounge or bar, or threw a lot of parties at my apartment, I would like to have an album like this around. You could put it on, and all of a sudden everything feels mellow and cool. No one would really complain about the music, because there is nothing here to really offend - unless "conscious" lyrics offend you, but even those are swallowed up in enough dub and reverb so as to be barely audible. You put this album on to create a vibe for the surroundings, not because you actually want anyone to really pay attention to it.

I don't own a hip lounge or bar, though, and I don't throw a lot of parties in my apartment. In fact, I listen to most of my music on headphones, commuting to and from work. In that setting, this album made my mind wander. Which isn't surprising, since it really isn't designed for deep listening; it is in fact designed to make your mind wander.

Covert Movements certainly isn't bad, but it isn't really overwhelmingly interesting, either. Just nice and mellow, perfect for Friday night drinks at the bar around the corner, but not something you'd necessarily want to hear in your headphones.

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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