“Two weeks paid vacation won’t heal the damage done.”

“We Used to Vacation” by Cold War Kids | All right, I am not posting this because Kuala Lumpur went terribly. It didn’t. We had fun. (Even the Singapore detour was, more or less, despite our last-minute plans falling apart.) I’m writing this because I have crammed way too much writing this past week to the point that I forgot to pre-schedule something to be written here for today. Sure, I have stuff on the inbox, but I think I can go work on that next week. I need to rest. We need to rest. And so, a song from Cold War Kids, a staple of my mid-00s initiation to British indie. (Only they weren’t British. They’re American. I did not just know about this recently, no.) We’ll get back to regular business tomorrow, with a couple of album reviews, but for now, a slice of almost a decade ago. [NB]

“Where is it that you go?”

“Mousedeer” by Inch Chua | Yes, this is a leftover from the Bandwagon Music Market almost two months ago. And yes, I deliberately held this to today, the closest day to this Friday, when Shalla and I fly to Singapore. Sure, we’re just spending five hours there – it’s a layover to Kuala Lumpur; if you get really cheap Singapore Airlines tickets, you get them – but we’ll be there for brunch, a quick stroll, and maybe, maybe, an attempt to get a copy of Letters to Ubin, Inch’s latest EP, where this song came from. She performed “Mousedeer” at the Music Market, complete with stories of where that cooing sound that forms the hook of the song comes from – apparently the locals call them “orgasm birds”, which led to some very awkward Google look-ups, although Shalla and I, both familiar with the country with varying intimacies, know what she is talking about. And then we attempt doing that sound, laugh it all off, and hatch a plan, sort of. But now I realize she might have been referring to the actual bird sounds sampled in the song, and apparently, across the EP. Which leads me to this: Inch, in the off chance you’re reading this, we really hope we could find that CD. And yes, we still buy CDs. [NB]

“So long, Marianne. It’s time that we began.”

“So Long, Marianne” by Leonard Cohen | I was thinking of reviewing Leonard Cohen’s last few releases on this blog, but didn’t. Unlike, say, his contemporaries, Leonard seemed much more impenetrable to me, and considering I didn’t have time, I just decided not to. I knew some of his work. Anybody who’s watched a singing competition knows “Hallelujah”, but not the fact that he originally did it. But I knew one day I would have to write about him. I had a feeling this last stretch of his is, well, the last stretch. It is. Leonard Cohen, wordsmith, has died today last Monday (apparently) at 82. A voice that always seemed to speak the truth, never mind if you were a devotee or a passing listener, has been silenced. And so, I attempt to write about him here – perhaps not a crash course like I wanted, at least for now, but still, it was nice knowing you, Leonard, even for a bit. [NB]

“But you can’t go where they all go.”

“laughing and not being normal” by Grimes | About the events of the past couple of days… dear Americans, or at least that half who thinks the other half screwed them over: be grateful that you still have people who can laugh about this, for now. Be grateful that at the end of the day you will have Sam and Stephen and Trevor and John and Seth and all their ilk, seething with outrage and punchlines, a light at the end of one segment of a seemingly never ending tunnel. Ask us Filipinos. We’re arguably living through your nightmare scenario and nobody can poke fun at it, even if we’re (still) supposedly free. Be grateful that you have them. At least for now. [NB]

“I can’t fight it off.”

“Edge” by Haim | Long-time readers of this blog would know that I considered Haim a favorite around the time they released Days Are Gone in 2013. And then I got tired of them. I don’t know. Maybe I plunged myself into their stuff too quickly, or maybe they just weren’t up to what I expected. (I lean toward the latter.) I lost interest enough to not find out about “Edge”, a bonus track co-written with Twin Shadow, until a couple of years after the album’s release. And why am I writing about this song today? Expediency. My laptop has failed again – and worse, it seems. And worst of all, my alternate PC is not playing nice, either. Let’s say I write this at the end of Tuesday, after an exhausting day of having no control and being on the verge of suicide. [NB]