stamps: stickyback pictures
Happy Bloomsday, everybuggy.
New York was one huge round of bloody marys and how's-your-fathers. LCD Soundsystem? Sharp but hoarse; the surprise of their being a real live band is only a surprise once, though they seem to have hollowed a workable home out of those songs. Liked hearing their Paperclip People cover, too; surprising and cool to hear that they have enough control to pull it off. (Heavily linked elsewhere but too good to ignore: Banana Nutrament's annotated transcription of "Losing My Edge.")
There was something really time-marking about this year's MoCCA Festival--it may have to do with the aforementioned whiplash about indie cartoonists adjusting to the "major label" publishing world's schedules, or maybe just how long significant comics projects take; as Charles Burns mentioned the weekend before, Black Hole took him ten years to finish. But the only thing that I was saying "omigod did you SEE THAT?!" about was Alexa Kitchen's how-to-draw-comics-the-Alexa-Kitchen way book--actually a blank book on which she'd drawn detailed instructions on the first eighty pages or so, including sections on e.g. color theory and facial expressions and background patterns. (For the benefit of those who haven't clicked on the link, I should point out that Alexa is seven years old.) She's the first person I've ever paid to commission a sketch from--$10 for a "fancy sketch." "Is there anything you want in your sketch?" she asked. How about putting a brick in it somewhere, I said. "Like the brick in Krazy Kat?" Exactly like the brick in Krazy Kat.
(Also enjoyed Matt Madden's forthcoming how-to-draw-comics-the-Raymond-Queneau-way book.)
A little depressed by: the first issue of Mome, Fantagraphics' new Granta-shaped anthology, which is a lot of things I've seen done to death already--foot-staring pseudoautobiographical lowlife miserablism (Jeffrey Brown is supposed to be a regular in this thing and his FIRST piece for it is the story-about-not-being-able-to-think-of-a-story? Jesus Q. Christ), a bunch of Martin Cendrada pseudo-retro pseudo-gag panels that are like a toothless variation on Ivan Brunetti, Anders Nilsen in his tossed-off/scribbly style rather than the detailed/mark-accretion style of Big Questions, etc. I like the Andrice Arp piece, though--it's very similar to her story in Scheherazade, but I wouldn't mind seeing a book's worth of stuff in that vein from her.
New piece up from last weekend's New York Times Book Review: a roundup of five recent thrillers.