Posted by: Danjamin S. Meow | May 29, 2008

ICBTDEM! #2: Conor Oberst

By “weekly”, I didn’t actually mean “spontaneously, or on a schedule of whenever the fuck I can be bothered” – but internet access in my house has been non-existent (I came home and someone had buttraeped my router). Plus I’ve been having trouble with file hosting websites so you can just find and download the recommended tracks yourselves. Lazy bastards.

zOMG I can’t believe Conor Oberst isn’t a meat eater.
Actually, my overly melodramatic exclamation is false. I found out a little while ago, and he wasn’t really hiding it when he made this video for PeTA:

(Although his Wikipedia article claims he’s now a pescaterian. Boo.)

The co-owner of Saddle Creek records and vocalist/guitarist/driving force behind both Bright Eyes (he sounds best singing folk-inspired indie pop IMO) and the short-lived indie-punk hybrid Desaparecidos, Oberst has also been an open supporter of Barrack Obama, playing for him at rallies in January and February of this year.

Cassadaga came out last year and I’m still delving into it whilst listening to Read Music/Speak Spanish.

I recommend basically anything you can find from either of those two in Lua of finding “Well Whiskey”.

Next week: I might manage to smuggle a post out using a router Tony Stark built in a cave LOLOLOLOLOLOLOL

Posted by: charmedquark | May 24, 2008


Teenagers in tokyo - click for last.fmYeah it’s one word.

Funny how there are so many references in pop culture to tokyo. There’s the Tokyo Police Club, Tokyo Blonde, Birds of Tokyo, the song ‘Tokyo Moon’ by Windmill and the song ‘Bitches in Tokyo’ by stars.

Anyway these guys are an experimental/jungle band carrying elements of post punk (and hailing from our own dear Sydney).
Not sure what to compare them to, but the music is fun to listen to. They’re full of beat.
And colour too. They’re so colourful. Here’s a song.

Posted by: Stephen | May 21, 2008

Veganism is not a form of Socialism.

If you think the fundamental principles of the Socialist and Animal Rights (edit: blanket labels I know) movements are inextricably linked, you are wrong.

Hey guys. I’m amazing. And I shouldn’t be posting for the first time on this blog right now because I have an intensely large assignment to complete. I AM NOT PROCRASTINATING.

Alright, I had half of a long intelligent post about this written a couple days back but I abandoned it because I sounded like a condescending jerk. I probably still do, but I don’t really care. Who are you anyway? Some guy raging against the machine? A pamphlet-happy little red soldier intending to get involved in some awesome STUDENT ACTIVISM. Well i mean, I’m not going to worry too much if you are. Stroke Marx’s beard all you want, son. Just don’t assume that because I’m a vegan I’m going to help wave the banner in your campaign to immensely increase the scope of government.

You are on firm ground if you make the link that someone who avoids all animal products probably isn’t really into animal cruelty. It probably isn’t what they’re about right. They may think that the unnecessary abuse and murder of animals is not something they wish to actively support. This makes sense. We are on the same page. All is well.

The problem arises when you streamline animal rights into being just a subset of your overall political agenda. Excuse me for one second, but I believe this issue might be just important enough to transcend a few barriers in this area. Conflating highly contentious ideas such as affirmative action, strong wealth redistribution and protectionism with animal rights is absurd. To me, this is so obvious that I am perplexed by the fact that EVERYONE seems to do it.

I’m not going to write anymore right now because I sound like a complete dick and I have work to do. In all seriousness though, read the literature available on the aforementioned political issues. They are certainly not quite as clear cut as a movement which believes humans should treat animals with even the slightest amount of respect.


Posted by: charmedquark | May 16, 2008

David Jones: Providing a valuable community service

David Jones has THE best.vegan.chocolate.range.ever.

Do you know why? Because good dark chocolate is ALWAYS vegan. Cheap dark chocolate has butter or milk in it, but by definition dark chocolate is not supposed to have milk or butter or animal products in it.

omg divineI will give you an example of fine vegan chocolate that david jones provides.

Firstly there is Charbonnel et Walker. The most expensive chocolate in David Jones. My personal favourites from this brand are the bitter mints. At $160 a kilo, these are quite pricey but worth it.

Another is the Donna Hay range of chocolates. As long as you get the dark chocolate, you’re fine. The Hazelnut crush is divine, brings to mind nutella.

Anyway, go check it out. If you’re a vegan and you love chocolate this is the place to be.

Posted by: charmedquark | May 9, 2008

My Brightest Diamond

The beauty incarnateA real jewel among artists, Shara Warden (the magician behind My Brightest Diamond) mixes genres in a melting pot of wonders, and with a beautiful voice to top it off makes music that is as delectable as it is varied.
As an ex-music student myself, I am well equipped to appreciate the finer elements of her music, such as the elegant instrumentation and the implementation of various classical techniques. These are a reflection of her classical training and her parents’ occupations – both musicians.
She currently has one album out – Bring me the Workhorse – and another compilation of remixes – Tear it Down. Both are highly recommended by yours truly. Not suited to everyone but I think her music can be respected, whether it matches your taste or not. Worth a shot.

A Thousand Shark’s Teeth is coming soon, expect it June 17th.
I hear rumors that an Advance is out and about circulating. Maybe if you have waffles you can get it. So I’ve heard. Mmm waffles.

Something of an End – My Brightest Diamond (mp3)

Disappear (wheat to whiskey Mix by Cedar AV) – My Brightest Diamond (mp3)

Posted by: Danjamin S. Meow | April 30, 2008

I-Can’t-Believe-They-Don’t-Eat-Meat! #1: Fiona Apple

Fiona Apple First up: Fiona Apple

PeTA may use celebrity culture in the hopes of wooing the impressionable masses, which I can sort of see the value in, but it is a bit of a double-edged sword (who’s going to take Steve-O srsly?)

I’m not going to insult anybody’s intelligence or preach to the (sadly minority of) thinking converted with the whole “They did! You can, too!” bit. Rather, draw attention to those worth noticing, who happen to be doing the right thing. I won’t plug JT’s latest album solely on the grounds that he’s vegan. Shudder.

So part one in my series of weekly features on noteworthy veg*ns is someone dear to me (“When the Pawn…” was the first album I bought which wasn’t pushed at me by commercial radio).
A musical prodigy, Apple released her first album at 19, has the dubious Guinness World Record of longest album name, and came under fire for speaking out against the superficial nature of the entertainment industry when accepting her 1997 MTV award after flaunting her waif-like appearance in her video for “Sleep to Dream”.

For fans and the uninitiated alike, Fiona’s cover of Use Me (by Bill withers).

reminds me of my oneteaspoon bleeding butterflies jumper.Ok so I’m a bit late with this but hey. It has to be said, better now than never.

I’m a big fan of these guys, ever since I saw them at the big day out ’07. So when I saw them playing with Little Birdy in Forrest Chase early last year, I bought their first EP. Since then they’ve apparently come a long way, generating press for themselves solely on the back of their music (as opposed to being thrust forward by a major label as the next big thing – kudos to

So the new EP, Where do you Hide Your Toys. It isnt exclusively new material I might point out, but there is some brilliant stuff on there. It IS my kind of music however, and definitely not for everyone, but if you wanted a comparison, you might say it’s a mix of “Queens Of The Stone Age, Black Rebel Motorcycle Club and Kings Of Leon” (kudos to I personally love the raw edge of the music, getting close to post-hardcore/math with its atonality, and bearing similarities to the dance-punk of DFA’79.

get it

The vid for Jigsaw by Sugar army

listen at

Posted by: charmedquark | April 19, 2008

Hello Sweden

I’m probably biased in favour of Swedish bands but oh well, two for you today.

hello saferide!Firstly let’s have a look at the adorable Hello Saferide.
Honestly you couldn’t much sweeter even if you tried really, really hard. Her voice is candy and the music is just lovely
Have a listen to The best Night of your Life (mp3) and you’ll have to agree my friendshout out louds

And as for the Shout Out Louds – I only realised they were swedish this afternoon (imagine my surprise!). These are on high rotation on triple J at the moment so you’ll probably end up hearing them at some point. Upbeat music, with a few sad ones thrown in. I’m in a happy mood at the moment so I think you should check out Normandie (mp3).

Probably not the most eloquent entry. I’ve been napping all afternoon so you’ll have to excuse me.

Posted by: Danjamin S. Meow | April 14, 2008

“Veganising” the veal

Anthony Bourdain

Timeline of important events in this man’s life:

2000 – Jackass chef above compares vegans to the Hezbollah in his book, says he believes a life without veal, stinky cheese and pork isn’t worth living and veg*ns are an affront to the enjoyment of food. Some vegans take offense, everyone else roll eyes and ignore chef’s bullshit comments, life goes on.

2008 – Pissed vegans submit recipes with the cruelty removed to Hezbollah Tofu instead of going to “bookstores drawing giant penises on [his] book covers with Sharpies”.

? – eBook compilation of HT recipes with penis doodled on cover raises funds for various animal charities in Bourdain’s name. Vegans win.

?? – In alternative universe, Bourdain sees opportunity for profit and opens veg*n restaurant. Writes sequel to memoirs. It doesn’t sell, everybody knows he ripped his vegan cupcake recipes off the Post Punk Kitchen.

Posted by: Danjamin S. Meow | April 7, 2008

Agrofuels: not a cool response to global warming

Skip reading this article and go straight to FoodFirst’s brief and petition to hold a Moratorium on agrofuels

...But I didnae eat any corrrn

‘Sif we don’t have enough problem feeding the world’s people, now they want to feed food to our cars as well. Ethanol-laced petrol is a growing sector of the fuel market, and is made industrially by fermenting the sugars in corn and purifying the resultant alcohol. Replacing a percentage of petrol with cleaner-burning ethanol sounds like a good idea, but wait: we already have a use for corn. Not only do people eat it, but it’s a staple in the diets of domesticated farm animals (read: food source for the unenlightened masses). I for one doubt that when the demand for corn rises, the agricultural industry as a whole is going to look for alternate stock feed crops, but rather clear more land (containing all this useless rainforest and eliminating the animals inhabiting it which can’t be eaten, make milk or lay eggs) and plant more corn. While corn may be a renewable commodity, it seems fairly self-evident that clearing biologically diverse rainforest for monoculture crops is unsustainable, especially since corn is possibly THE worst topsoil-eroding crop. Real smart.

But wait; there’s more. Not a set of steak knives I have no use for, but actual steak. A side effect of the geniuses in charge thinking that the answer to the starving third world children and climate change is “make moar meatz!” and “turn our lights off for an hour!” (instead of “encourage veganism, utilise land efficiently for crops and in the process save water, the environment, the animals and everyone’s health”) is that the livestock industry has all these left-over animal fats, bones and by-products to get rid of (how else could we have invented lard on toast, jelly, or animal-fat moisturisers?).

Cue the buzz word “biofuel” and we have someone go “animals equals bio!” and some other idiot wants to put animal fats into car engines. Great, if you own a slaughterhouse and want to sell some of your surplus by-products. Not great, if you’re veg*n and don’t want to increase profits/decrease waste-elimination costs of an industry built on animal expoitation nor provide the ignorant another “reason” humans have to rely on animal slaughter.

Don’t just take my word on all of this, though:
The Great Agrofuel Swindle
Project makes fuel from animal byproducts

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