Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Some Things I Forgot to Tell You

I feel like there are some things I have neglected to tell you recently. Nothing too important, just the sorts of things I normally tell you, the kind of things that keep you coming back for more.

One important thing I forgot to mention was the New Glarus Fat Squirrel I tried on Sunday while watching football. It was good. It was the type of beer - a brown ale - you'd sit down and have a few with your buddy, a session beer if you will. Plus, it had a distinct presence of rye. Too bad New Glarus only sells in Wisconsin.

There was more beer over the three-day weekend.

I made a waterzooi which included a cup of a tripel ale. The recipe came from The Best of Beer & Food: Pairing & Cooking with Craft Beer that R gave me for Xmas. The waterzooi was OK, but the beer was a pleasant surprise. I once bought a Southern Tier Tripel for a beer tasting. It was very disappointing. When I stumbled across the same beer a couple of weeks ago, I forgot how terrible it was and purchased it again, hence the decision to cook with the tripel. After pouring a cup into the waterzooi, I sipped on the rest of the bomber and was shocked to find that it was a rather pleasant beer. The hops right at the beginning had me hooked. I don't know that I'd buy it again, but I surely would finish it before I threw it out. (Sorry, no picture. I didn't think I would write about this beer.)

After the waterzooi and putting a certain four-month-old to bed, I headed out for another beer tasting at Sycamore. The night's beers were barley wines and old ales. Let's just say that it was hard to keep track. One should not mess with the barley wine. What I did gather was that barley wines really do benefit from some aging. So, I'm glad I kept several of my better bottles at home for cellaring. You can find the list of beers here.

While at the tasting, I also learned that the group is going to morph into something more official with possible dues, outreach programs, and an ultimate goal of creating a beer festival. This could get interesting. Our next meeting is on February 22nd at 7 PM, if you're interested.

There hasn't been much to say about music with my Animal Collective LP on back order. I am keeping up with my promise to buy more vinyl as some older records have arrived at a steady pace from Insound and eBay. Today, I finally received some items I pre-ordered from Insound.

Bon Iver returns with a four-song-EP (Blood Bank) of tracks left off last (last) year's For Emma, Forever Ago. Some people like it. Some don't. I feel it fits perfectly in place right after For Emma... and a long way before a proper follow-up. I like EP's that mainly feature oddballs and filler. It gives you a completely different image of the artist and his work. The title track is a rocker (for Bon Iver). The second track would fit on For Emma... had it been a lighter affair. "Babys," the third song, subtly reminds me of TV on the Radio with its looped piano beating and soulful vocal delivery. "Woods" is the oddest of the set with its use of auto-tuned vocals, but the experiment somehow saves face in the end with layers upon layers.

Also, I received a vinyl reissue of Airing of Grievances by Titus Andronicus. I read a lot of good things about this band in '08 and thought it deserved a shot when I saw the pre-order offer on Insound. I think I'm really hooked on anything pop/punk that feeds my hunger for the lo-fi and injects my record collection with some life. Part Brit-pop, part Sex Pistols, part early nineties Olympia, part...I don't know what, but this record makes me want to feel or at least dance. Good stuff that Titus Andronicus.

Eventually, I will get my copy of the Animal Collective record and I'll tell why it is the greatest thing ever. However, my package has not arrived. So, you will have to wait with bated breath until I tell you what to think about that melodic nonsense that is Animal Collective. Difficult indeed.

Something else I didn't tell...well...at least not recently: Bald Eagle opens for Cursive this Thursday at Mojo's. I plan to show up, so don't buy the last ticket. My hope is to help put the kid to bed, then sneak out to the show. I've seen Cursive before. I sort of outgrew them, but they have solid material. Bald Eagle, on the other hand, deserves your immediate attention.

Let me see, I told you about the Handsome Furs show on St. Patrick's Day, but I did not tell you I would be there. Now you have to wait for my crappy video or 30-something take on the Vancouver indie couple's performance in the barn we affectionately call Mojo's.

Lost returns Wednesday eve. Check it...

One more thing, there will be yet another Happy Hour at the 'Tag this Friday. Stop in, say hello, and buy me a beer.


Zach said...

There's a band called Tops that's playing Mojo's on Tuesday. Just saying.

ks said...

I'm going to pick up that Bon Iver EP and the Titus Andronicus now...thanks for the recs.

The stuff I've heard off the Animal Collective album is pretty good. I hope yours finally arrives sometime this year.