It Doesn’t Take a Genius…

By Miles Erickson

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It Doesn’t Take a Genius…
My family constantly clowns on me for the time I called my mom crying asking to be picked up from summer camp. I was 11 and the video, Halo 3, had just come out so honestly it’s a decision I still stand by. Also, unless you’re one of the Village People or just really need a place to crash, why would you want to spend an entire week at a YMCA sleep-away summer camp? I was thinking about this because I’m currently staring at a giant Metaverse billboard outside my apartment. I imagine that in 10 years parents will be able to just enter in their credit card numbers and plug their kid into the matrix for the entire summer. Imagine being a parent watching TV when suddenly you get a voice memo from your kid, who’s currently attending the Metaverse summer camp. “Mooooommm the plug is hurting my brain outlet! Can I please come home?” “Honey the Walmart virtual shopping assistant/Metaverse health lodge nurse examined your frontal cortex and the diagnostics they ran said nothing was wrong. Here, I just bought you some ETC. Go buy a cherry Faygo or a Fortnite Chug Jug from the Trading Post commissary.” Also, while on the subject, I noticed that you can buy alcohol in the Metaverse VR Walmart. Clearly, whoever designed this system doesn’t understand the internet. It doesn’t take a genius to anticipate that it will take exactly five minutes from the time of launch for there to be YouTube videos titled, “Buying alcohol underage hack any % speedrun 30.31 seconds.” Long Distance Listening Party Vol. 14 This playlist is available on Spotify. Search “Long Distance Listening Party” or my username, Mileserickson-354. Starstruck, Sorry. All the Sad Young Men, Spector. Doing it To Death, The Kills. Felony, Spector. Two Against One, Danger Mouse, Daniele Luppi, Jack White, Norah Jones. F**k Marry Kill, Daddy Issues. Sleazy Bed Track (BBC Evening Session 1998), The Bluetones. Starstruck, Sorry. Rarely do I write about a song just to say that I like it. I’ve said this before, but when compiling these playlists, I usually end up listening to about 70 new songs a week. Songs that stick out to me on the first listen are few and far between. “Starstruck” is extremely fresh, and that’s all I’ve really got to say about it. Though I will say that I was slightly disappointed by their most recent single, “Let the Lights On,” which tries and doesn’t quite succeed at capturing that same lightning in a bottle. Felony, Spector. Spector is a band that constantly puts out music that sounds like it should be on the Top 40 pop charts. They make music that has all the elements of successful pop songs, but, other than their song, “Chevy Thunder,” hitting number one in the UK’s alternative charts, they never took off in a way most people feel they should have. Of the two songs in this playlist, I think “All the Sad Young Men” is the better piece. It is much closer to the kind of music that used to be put out by bands like the Killers and New Order, whereas “Felony” feels more modern. Also, I’m anticipating an interview with Spector for the next column, so I’m not going to lean too hard into the fact that the lyrics could be interpreted as being about loving someone who is underage. Two Against One, Danger Mouse, Daniele Luppi, Jack White, Norah Jones. I don’t know why this song feels so dated. Maybe because we’re far beyond the point of Norah Jones’ CDs being sold at your local Starbucks. Also, the only people I’ve ever known to actually own one of those CDs were Starbucks employees who got the unsold copies as a “Bonus” for working hard. This song is good, it’s definitely overshadowed by the fact that it appears on the same album as Norah Jones and Dangermouse’s “Black,” which, even though it doesn’t have very many Spotify streams, is a song that’s used in so many movie and TV show soundtracks that I deemed it too popular for this column. Miles Erickson is a recent graduate of CalArts, published author, and currently enrolled in a prestigious, four-year, student loan repayment program. Long Distance Listening Party’s vague intention is to discuss topics framed in the context of what I’m currently listening to.

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August 5, 2022

A Topanga Memorial