by Sean
Please note: MP3s are only kept online for a short time, and if this entry is from more than a couple of weeks ago, the music probably won't be available to download any more.


An empty elephant

Sun in Sound - "Up North". Jordan and his writing partner Joel once made a project called America, where Joel told a long, winding tale about men, pipes, and things I don't remember. (I wasn't there. I saw the film. It was a long time ago.) While Joel talked, Jordan brought him out plate after plate of delicious, rich food. They ate the food with gusto - plate after plate, beef and chicken and cherries and spices. They also drank whole bottles of wine. By the end of the story, both were close to vomiting. America was in its way a comment on something - but it was also simply very funny. "Up North" reminds me of this. Sun in Sound's Norwegian singer, who idolises Roy Orbison, sings in a way that seems at the verge of illness. Heartbreak, maybe, but I think seasickness more likely. The song is beautiful, but the whole track seems vaguely seasick, brine swimming in the mix beneath all those cherries & spices, the longing saw & the festive organ. "Up North" skirts the edge of brilliance by also skirting the edge of too much-ness. It'll either make you feel nauseous, or utterly smitten. [MySpace]



Danny Zabbal, our friend (and the designer of one of Gramophone's headers), has relaunched his website and also announced the debut of a weekly webcomic. We are delighted. (We also strongly recommend that you scroll down to discover Insomnia Man.)

Lit Pop is a terrific new literary competition launched by Matrix Magazine and the Pop Montreal festival. Emerging Canadian writers can submit poetry and short fiction for the chance to win publication and a trip to Montreal for the festival (including airfare, accommodation, spending money and a VIP pass). It's a great prize and a great opportunity, especially for people who have struggled a bit with the country's sometimes-stodgy lit scene. Hope some of you will enter. (Deadline is July 15)

Montrealers - besides this weekend's shows, I would invite you to explore and participate in the Montreal 60 Minute Film Festival, an event I'm helping to coordinate here. 60 second films by 60 filmmakers, of every level of expertise. It's going to be wonderful.

[photo source unknown]

Posted by Sean at July 10, 2008 11:15 AM

now that I've read that, when I listen to this song I can feel my stomach swaying along with it. it's awesome, in a gross kind of way

Posted by Bethan at July 10, 2008 1:27 PM

This is so weird. I really didn't like Up North until I realised where I kind of knew it from already - it sounds like that Johnnie Taylor song you posted a while back, Rome (Wasn't Built In A Day), stretched slow like taffy, or made into one of those sliding jigsaw puzzles where there's a square missing.

And now I love it.

Posted by Ryan at July 10, 2008 2:46 PM

Great track. Took me a while to get accustomed to this guys voice.

Posted by Rus Yusupov at July 11, 2008 1:01 PM

that's a cool picture

Posted by matthew at July 13, 2008 2:11 PM

Diamonds is the best band I've heard all year!

Posted by anon at July 25, 2008 6:44 AM

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about said the gramophone
This is a daily sampler of really good songs. All tracks are posted out of love. Please go out and buy the records.

To hear a song in your browser, click the and it will begin playing. All songs are also available to download: just right-click the link and choose 'Save as...'

All songs are removed within a few weeks of posting.

Said the Gramophone launched in March 2003, and added songs in November of that year. It was one of the world's first mp3blogs.

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"And I shall watch the ferry-boats / and they'll get high on a bluer ocean / against tomorrow's sky / and I will never grow so old again."
about the authors
Sean Michaels is the founder of Said the Gramophone. He is a writer, critic and author of the theremin novel Us Conductors. Follow him on Twitter or reach him by email here. Click here to browse his posts.

Emma Healey writes poems and essays in Toronto. She joined Said the Gramophone in 2015. This is her website and email her here.

Jeff Miller is a Montreal-based writer and zinemaker. He is the author of Ghost Pine: All Stories True and a bunch of other stories. He joined Said the Gramophone in 2015. Say hello on Twitter or email.

Mitz Takahashi is originally from Osaka, Japan who now lives and works as a furniture designer/maker in Montreal. English is not his first language so please forgive his glamour grammar mistakes. He is trying. He joined Said the Gramophone in 2015. Reach him by email here.

Site design and header typography by Neale McDavitt-Van Fleet. The header graphic is randomized: this one is by Neale McDavitt-Van Fleet.
Dan Beirne wrote regularly for Said the Gramophone from August 2004 to December 2014. He is an actor and writer living in Toronto. Any claim he makes about his life on here is probably untrue. Click here to browse his posts. Email him here.

Jordan Himelfarb wrote for Said the Gramophone from November 2004 to March 2012. He lives in Toronto. He is an opinion editor at the Toronto Star. Click here to browse his posts. Email him here.
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our favourite blogs
(◊ means they write about music)

Back to the World
La Blogothèque
Weird Canada
Destination: Out
Endless Banquet
A Grammar (Nitsuh Abebe)
Ill Doctrine
A London Salmagundi
Words and Music
Petites planétes
Gorilla vs Bear
Silent Shout
Clouds of Evil
The Dolby Apposition
Awesome Tapes from Africa
Matana Roberts
Pitchfork Reviews Reviews
i like you [podcast]
Nicola Meighan
radiolab [podcast]
CKUT Music
plethoric pundrigrions
Wattled Smoky Honeyeater
The Clear-Minded Creative
Torture Garden
Passion of the Weiss
Juan and Only
Horses Think
White Hotel
Then Play Long (Marcello Carlin)
Uno Moralez
Coming Up For Air (Matt Forsythe)
my love for you is a stampede of horses
It's Nice That
Song, by Toad
In Focus
WTF [podcast]
The Rest is Noise (Alex Ross)
My Daguerreotype Boyfriend
The Hood Internet

things we like in Montreal
st-viateur bagel
café olimpico
Euro-Deli Batory
le pick up
kem coba
le couteau
au pied de cochon
mamie clafoutis
tourtière australienne
chez boris
alati caserta
vices & versa
+ paltoquet, cocoa locale, idée fixe, patati patata, the sparrow, pho tay ho, qin hua dumplings, caffé italia, hung phat banh mi, caffé san simeon, meu-meu, pho lien, romodos, patisserie guillaume, patisserie rhubarbe, kazu, lallouz, maison du nord, cuisine szechuan &c

drawn + quarterly
+ bottines &c

casa + sala + the hotel
blue skies turn black
montreal improv theatre
passovah productions
le cagibi
cinema du parc
pop pmontreal
yoga teacher Thea Metcalfe

Cult Montreal
The Believer
The Morning News
The Skinny