Tonight, Zach Schonfeld ’13 (aka Zach) is guest-lecturing for Lily’s class on the topic “The Role of Campus Media,” and in typical Wesleying fashion, we’ll be liveblogging it! Read below the jump for a window into the fun!
Future employers, meet Master of Ceremonies J**e W****y.
Awesomefest seems to finally have a unified purpose behind its name, and it’s not what the non-ironically-minded might expect. The event at Eclectic, the various incarnations of which I’ve attended at many junctures during my time at Wesleyan, always seemed torn between genuinely debuting new bands and the joke acts of usually talented music majors and other prominent musicians. This year, though, the jokier bands truly got my attention, and perhaps exhibited greater creativity by breaking out of the confines of good music — if it could even be called music at all.
There was Zak Malik ’14 attempting to play drums while singing “Levels” by AVICII at the same time. The vocals got the short end of the stick, coming out more like “DA-DUN-DUN-DUN-DUN-DUN, DUN-DUN-DUN-DUNH-DA-DA-DUNH-DUNH” than anything tuneful. There was Malik’s Lion King song cover band with Henry Molofsky ’13 (who just did a Music thesis that I’m sure was wonderful and had a lot of serious value) that butchered the songs and couldn’t remember half of the lyrics. About halfway through “I Just Can’t Wait to Be King,” there appeared to be smoke streaming from Malik’s keyboard in my pictures; I showed the pictures to the kid next to me, and after a big misunderstanding he ended up asking the sound guy if there was anything wrong – but it only turned out to be the sound guy’s cigarette.
Stephan Stansfield ’13and Rachel Connor ’13 (now ’14) — returning, happily, to the Wesleyan music scene after a long absence — played a surf rock song about being “back in the UAE” that devolved into a paean to the pleasures of boofing. A band called “Bryan J. ft. Travis Porter,” which included Molofsky, Aaron Khandros ’13,Bennett Kirschner ’13, and Connor, delivered what one fellow audience member opined was “the worst music [he] had ever heard,” with Kirschner screaming at the top of his lungs. There was a strip show that ended with mashed bananas all over the floor and A-Batte somewhere under the stage, along with the microphone.
Frank Fineis ’13 and our Dearest Leader Zach Schonfeld ’13 has the latest in hardcore music-related Wesleyan events, as always. But this one is actually pretty awesome:
Ian MacKaye is the famously uncompromising former frontman of Fugazi and Minor Threat, current co-member (with his partner Amy Farina) of The Evens, and the founder of DC-based DIY label Dischord Records. He comes to shed wisdom on Wesleyan a few months after the release of The Evens’ latest album, The Odds—and shortly after the tenth anniversary of Fugazi’s hiatus. If you have even the slightest interest in hardcore, 1990s American indie underground, or DIY music industry ethics, this one’s worth your while.
This event is free and open to the public, so arrive early. It will also be entirely question-and-answer format, so please bring questions for Mr. MacKaye.
Need-blind has been conspicuously absent from campus discussion lately. (I would have put a link in that last sentence but really, nobody’s talked about it much in months.) Many of need-blind’s most fervent and vocal advocates have burned out, have moved on, have grown hoarse from what seems to be a stagnant discussion. (Have forgotten?)
Fortunately, Our Most Glorious and Dear Leader Zachis having none of that. His recent article in USA Today College focuses on recent activism taking place among alumni rather than students, describing a “poignant patchwork of alumni perspectives” manifesting themselves in a plethora of petitions recently circulating amongst alumni. First there was one asking alums to withhold donations (for reasons involving sexual assault as well as need-blind), then came Lana Wilson ’05’s more recent Change.org petition. Zach’s bit discusses the general alumni response, covering both sides of the donation argument and everything in between. There is also a quote from President Roth, responding to the alumni voices:
Describing themselves as “a band with a penchant for falsetto,” Leaves of Green is a quartet of NYU students (two of whom hail from the bustling metropolis that is Chappaqua, NY). “Caving In” is a pretty solid indicator of their sonic depth, which ranges from ethereal post-rock to driving indie-rock to a thick, dramatic climax. And yes, there’s a falsetto. According to NYU Local (motto: “The Wesleying of NYU”) (not really), they’re great live, too.
O Presidente is a noo-wop / bro-fi / tropicália band based out of San Francisco and Wesleyan University. Last month, they released their debut full length album, Clube de Futebol, which tastemakers have called “an entertaining, rocking, and even sometimes crooning record” and “very, very good.” Check out their jock jamz at this link. According to esteemed musicologist Alexia Nazarian ’13, “O Presidente makes me want to get in a kiddie pool and splash around.” [Gabe recently wrote a review of O Presidente’s music, check it out at this link.]
Blackbird and the Cherry Tree is a collaboration between Jess Best ’14 and Mel Hsu ’13. With a cello holding down the bass and the keys building a bluesy core, the duo’s razor-sharp harmonies pull you into a place as sweet as it is wild. Sam Friedman ’13 and Mark Bennett ’13 often join them on stage to fill out the sound with dirty harmonica and hard-hitting drums. Although this band is all about groove, don’t expect to get too comfortable because the storm is never far off.
Zach submitted an event to be posted? wtf? Zach, please don’t edit this post. It’s already impeccably formatted (thx2u). From Zach Schonfeld ’13:
Oneohtrix Point Never is the stage name of experimental electronic wizard Daniel Lopatin, who’s also known for his work with the duo Ford & Lopatin. Using vintage synthesizers, television samples, and found sounds, OPN crafts distant, weightless tapestries of woozily layered ambient sound. His 2011 masterpiece, Replica, was listed as Pitchfork’s sixth best album of 2011 and described by Consequence of Sound as “like a series of FM radio transmissions from some far-off, twin parallel universe of ours, not peculiar to the point of total alien-ness, but certainly too strange and outlandish to be of Earthly origin.” Listen here.
Ben Seretan ’10 is a Wes alum, guitar genius, songwriter, California native, and member of Duchampion. He described his 2012 release, New Space, as an attempt “to have the sensation of swimming in or being embraced by the sound of my guitar and voice, to feel its physical presence pushing up against my sides, the walls, and furniture.” You can read about his work on Wesleying and listen to it on BandCamp.
About two weeks ago, we made a post about the fact that Our Dear LeaderZachhad completed his 1,200th Wesleying post. Today, we take a break from our normal campus-life blogging (and I take a break from my abroad-induced blogging hiatus) to worship him a little more than usual.
It has been said that the 22nd birthday is not particularly exciting from a legal standpoint, but we at Wesleying disagree. Zach, here are some things to celebrate on this most triumphant day:
You have been able to drink legally for a full year!
It’s been four years since you registered with Selective Service and you have not been drafted for the army yet.
It’s also been four years since you were able to go to real prison (as opposed to juvenile prison) if you had gotten arrested, but as far as we know this hasn’t happened, so congratulations!
Starting today, you only have to wait for 3 more years before you can rent a car.
Your age is now the same regardless of the order of digits. This won’t happen again until you’re 33.
What can the rest of us do to celebrate Zach‘s 22nd birthday? We can:
Agree to name our firstborn child “Zach”
For this day only, declare a truce on our vendetta with the letter “Z”
Spend 3 hours at the Zach shrine instead of the ordinary, culturally-mandated 2
Hook up with one of campus’s 30 Zachs in honor of Zach
Say happy birthday to him in person
Say happy birthday to him via the phone
Say happy birthday to him via internet (Facebook, email, Twitter, campus blog)
Say happy birthday to him via the comments below.
Please include the required donation of 14.8 billion rubles. We accept cash only.
This morning, Our Dear Leader Zach blogged his staggering 1,200thWesleying post. With the blog at a little over 11,000 total posts, this means that he has alone contributed over a tenth of Wesleying’s total material. What follows is a (tragically brief) history of his illustrious Wesleying career, a minor tribute to the immensity of his infinite glory.
Anal Schmalz Peeper, Spirit of 1863, and A. Avoiding Gym Roll Rot, Connecticut College Class of 1864, would like to invite you to their primary Student Forum: ASJL420: Markets of Britain.
Verily. Verily. Verily. Verily. Life is butt a Marquis du Sade. Haha hey. Fworst, Coreikullum: a study of penzils, whaylz, murdrerz beIIz and the like. Professor Schmalz Peeper, dead for but a forescore months will provide the “student” with “an” education in the finerest of thangs. Whults—Dr. Roll Rot, PhD, MDMA expert in innerest of sevens can “not” unhelp you to the highest reaches of their lowest bucket tors. Queven. Pastabilities are with the realm of unnearing unendlessnesslessness. Schneezle. Quoram of einundzwansig Studentinnen while suffice. Please emale of quistionz to dogsarelikesocute09-woof35(at)aol(dot)org.
Bee Tea Dubs: Zombie Art Collective meetings T.R. 8:30 AM PAC0004?
That band that live-tweeted its recent recording sessions. Maybe you heard about it?
Did you know that those guys (Lioness) were these guys (Linus) all along?!
That’s right – with a new name and a newish Twitter feed, one of Wesleyan’s most well-known Gangs of Slightly More than Four are reasserting their presence, finals be damned. The bros to end all bros have finally released one of their classics, Flying Goodnight (from lead vocalist and guitarist Dema Paxton Brofang ’13: “it’s pretty much the first song we’ve ever written together.”), for popular consumption. And boy, is it sumptuous. This polished cut is decadent, savory, and other words normally used to describe food. …cut me some slack, y’all. I’m not a professional music writer likesome people, okay?
Just in case you were wondering, Lioness are Jason Katzenstein ’13, John Snyder ’12, Dylan “Adrien DeFontaine ’13” Bostick ’13, Ethan Young ’13, and the aforementioned D.P.B. For more on The Flyness Lioness, check out a transcription of their oral arguments at Oral Wes.
You could also try Aural Wes, if you feel weird about clicking that.