Posts Tagged ‘Parkdale Revolutionary Orchestra’

I can’t quite explain why right now, but for a couple of reasons I am not doing a lot of things I normally do these days.

Frankly I am leading the life of a 19th-century tuberculosis patient, except I’m not in the Swiss Alps and I don’t have tuberculosis. (I think. I hope! Wouldn’t it be awful?)

Don’t worry or anything – I’m not sick or in legal trouble or anything bad, just temporarily not in my normal sphere. I’m just explaining why I haven’t been writing much lately and why I probably won’t for a little while.

Anyway. List of weird/awesome things that you’ve missed out on:
– Gus caught a rat. Well, he may have caught a rat. Either way Ben caught him with a rat corpse in the back yard. It may have died of natural causes and he was just being a scavenger.
– We are starting the Big Home Renovation on Tuesday! I will take pictures and make videos!
– I planted stuff in the garden and so far not all of it has been eaten.
– Still no firm date for Call of Cthulhu: The Opera, but lots of progress.

And last:

The Parkdale Revolutionary Orchestra returns on Tuesday! The Cameron House, 10 PM!

It’s just one set, opening for Friendly Rich, but still awesome.

So that’s all for now…look for me resuming normal blogging in a month or two. Or maybe inspiration will strike tomorrow. Who knows?


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Upper-class sociopaths are people too!

Quoth John Yoo’s sidekick:

“I have regrets because of the notoriety that this has brought me,” he said. “It has imposed enormous pressures on me both professionally and personally. It has had an impact on my family. And I regret that, as a result of my government service, that that kind of attention has been visited on me and on my family.”

I for one am deeply, deeply ashamed of doing my small part to expose Judge Bybee and Professor Yoo’s chilling disregard for the humanity of their fellow human. It never occured to me as we were making the album that we might, in some tiny way, be part of a critical response that might hurt the feelings of a man who’s happy to authorize torture but finds criticism unacceptably hurtful. I feel SO BAD about it that I’m this close to strapping MYSELF down on the waterboard…

…No, I can’t continue the sarcasm anymore. What a massive dick.

Buy the album!

Via Ed Brayton, Glenn Greenwald

EDITED TO ADD: The Parkdale Revolutionary Orchestra page is borked, so buy the album here.. Please let us know if we may be of further assistance.

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You know how I’ve been doing audition after audition for the past year? And while I’ve gotten feedback ranging from very encouraging to completely indifferent, I haven’t gotten a single role?

Not anymore!

On March 28 I’ll be singing Elvira in I Puritani with Opera in Concert. Sweet!

I’m still learning the part, so here’s a glimpse of what I’m up against:

That\'s gonna be me!

Also, the Parkdale Revolutionary Orchestra is playing tonight at 10 at the Tranzac. We’re bringing back some songs we haven’t played recently, as well as playing some old favourites and the odd Torture Memo, so come out. PWYC.

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The Torture Memos has been featured on FIRE JOHN YOO!, a blog/organization dedicated to getting John Yoo fired from UC Berkeley, which is a cause I can certainly get behind.

Go say hi.

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Hey, you remember that album we made last year? The Torture Memos? Based on the naked display of evil that bears the same name?

Well, when the Torture Memos came to light last spring, the Department of Justice started an investigation into whether or not the authors (John Yoo and Jay Bybee) had violated professional ethics in writing the memos in question. (If I had been in charge of writing it, it would have been done long ago, and would have consisted of one word: DUH.) Apparently the original report made similar conclusions to mine, though probably in more flowery and lawyerly language. But according to Newsweek:

Previously, the report concluded that two key authors–Jay Bybee, now a federal appellate court judge, and John Yoo, now a law professor–violated their professional obligations as lawyers when they crafted a crucial 2002 memo approving the use of harsh tactics, say two Justice sources who asked for anonymity discussing an internal matter. But the reviewer, career veteran David Margolis, downgraded that assessment to say they showed “poor judgment,” say the sources. (Under department rules, poor judgment does not constitute professional misconduct.) The shift is significant: the original finding would have triggered a referral to state bar associations for potential disciplinary action–which, in Bybee’s case, could have led to an impeachment inquiry.

So a verbal slap on the wrist, no consequences, no impeachment, nothing.

And this is in a country that might imprison you for 10 years if they catch you with a couple of funny cigarettes. Some priorities.

via Ed Brayton, Newsweek

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Hey!  How are you?  I haven’t been writing lately.  No particular reason, just the usual combination of business and ennui.  And I don’t have much to say now, so I’m going to make some lists.

Good things:

– The EEE is finally running Eeebuntu 3.0.  I know, 4.0 is coming soon.  I don’t know if I have the strength to go through an upgrade right now, but who knows, maybe it’ll be painless.

PRO show tomorrow! Come see it!

– I was actually asked to audition for something!  And the audition was yesterday, and I didn’t suck!

Tank Riot, Episode 85: Joe McCarthy

– I donated to Doctors without Borders for Haiti relief.

– I saw an awesome show with Nilan Pereira and Eve Egoyan on Sunday.

– One of my students makes his operatic debut this week in Frankenstein: The Opera.  No, really.  He’s playing William Frankenstein, Victor Frankenstein’s little brother.  He gets killed by the monster in Act II.  If you’re in Toronto this week, go see it.  http://www.tryptych.org.  It’s kind of expensive, but come on.  Frankenstein: The Opera.

– My bank balance is finally (just barely) positive again, meaning the recovery from Christmas is almost complete.  I also realized yesterday that I actually live within my means now, i.e., I no longer spend more than I earn.  Mostly because I don’t have much available credit, but still a good thing.

And bad things:

– As you know, giant earthquakes in Haiti and Guatemala.  Massive humanitarian disaster.  Give a bit to DWB or the Red Cross.

– In related news, Pat Buchanan and Rush Limbaugh are giant assholes.

– Gus has an eye infection.  $100 vet bill for $10 eyedrops.  The new vet is really nice, though.

– The axle on the rear tire of Ben’s bike snapped, and he’ll probably have to buy a new back tire.

– My bank balance may be positive, but if you look at the sum total of my financial holdings I am worth such a gigantically negative number (because of the mortgage) that it gives me a little shock every time I log into my online banking profile.  Of course, paying a mortgage is good, and we’ve already gained about $1500 in equity just by owning a house for a few months, but holy sh*t is it a big number.  In brackets.

– And I’m about to go out into a cold and damp day to put up posters for the show tomorrow.  Here’s my first one:

Show tomorrow, Tranzac, 10 PM

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From Eye Magazine:

…The Torture Memos’ strong narrative, decoupled from predictable verse/chorus structures, makes for anxious listening. When phrases like “self defence” or “whatever it takes” are stretched out like taffy, they turn into great hooks — just as evil slogans should. And Kristin Mueller-Heaslip’s fraught, full-throttle operatic vocals are absolutely brilliant, exposing the brutality dulled by the jargon of the source material.

It’s nice to be mentioned positively in a review (and not called “a slightly more human Jessica Rabbit*”), though I’m beginning to wonder if I don’t sing way too loud all the time. Remember the review from Thunder Bay where they talked about how huge my voice was?

My theory is that untrained/pop singers tend to sing in what you might call a “wispy” way. At least the ones who sing in a higher range, in head voice, do, i.e.: Feist. The syllables all sort of taper off before the next one comes around, and there’s not a lot of what you might call pressure to the sound. But I have a naturally bright and forward voice, and the classical training that emphasizes LEGATO LEGATO LEGATO. Different.

Anyway, enough about me, and more about that extremely positive review. Come on Friday to the CD release and buy an album! Or just buy an album!

*I can’t find the link anymore. Obviously some things smart too much for a bookmark.

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