Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Music Binge

Downloaded some new stuff:

  1. Jimi Hendrix - Valleys of Neptune - it’s amazing how many post-humous releases Jimi has. Not that much brand new material here, 75% of it has existed in other versions on other releases. But the quality of the recordings is top notch, and I appreciate alternative versions of his hits.
  2. Air - Pocket Symphony - I seem to have misplaced my copies of “Moon Safari” and “The Virgin Suicides”. This is a newer album that seems to deliver on Air’s unique atmospheric sound. I approve...haven’t listened to it that much.
  3. Roxy Music - Country Life - I was never into this band, but the album was on sale for $3.60 on Amazon. Worth a try (and the wonderfully skanky scandalous cover caught my attention). Had heard good things about the band, most of their cds were available in the music shop back when I was in Beijing as a student but I never picked them up then. Anyway, I like the music here - it reminds me of David Bowie from the same era; it is pretty solidly rocking 70s-style Brit rock. No complaints.
  4. The Love Me Nots - Upsidedown Insideout - It was a toss-up among this album and their others...their sound seems pretty consistent. It’s a good sound - garage-surf-rock. Less of an album experience but rather much needed flavor to mix into the ipod when it’s on shuffle. While it does rock the lyrics are a little too girly.
  5. Afghan Whigs - Creep - Their excellent cover of the song by TLC.
  6. Beyond - I wasn’t really into their work that much during my time living in China, but I’ve grown to love some of their songs...somehow definitely a cut above the usual cheesy ballad crap that passes for pop music. At least these guys wrote their own stuff. Some of their better-known hits are: 光辉岁月, 海闊天空, 真的爱你
It was a slow week last week; hopefully things will be better this week.

Tuesday, March 09, 2010

must recommend this cookbook

The Essential Wok Cookbook

Picked this up from a guy selling left-over (factory surplus?) books on a cart in Shenzhen back in 2006.

The book seems to be out of print in the US now, but it's worth a look. Highly recommended if you're willing to attempt making authentic Southeast Asian style curries and Chinese food.

Still enjoying it now - really good introduction to making a wide variety of Asian dishes; the recipes have been very solid so far.

Monday, March 08, 2010

Interesting WSJ journalist in Korea

Just finished reading about this guy in Korea who posed an uncomfortable question to the Korean Finance Minister.

I guess I don’t know the project/story he was working on that prompted him to ask this question in a public setting, but his point seems very fair to me; certainly if there is any day of the year to ask such questions and provoke discussion on the topic of women’s role in Korean society, this day (international women’s day) would be it.

It’s interesting that this (the practice of going to hostess bars for business) is defensible publicly; yet the way they’re going about this by playing the “national outrage” card.

On the other hand (thinking from my most basic male instincts) since the “old school” system in Korea is so beneficial to men, why rush to change it?

Also, if hostess bars & business are so offensive to some, how much better/worse are business meetings at strip clubs in the US? (On one hand, there’s the morality of the issue, and then there’s also there’s the issue of how widespread of a required business practice there is)