by Ryland Walker Knight
I don't have a license to sell you these.
After reading Shoals' relaunch of the FD widget earlier today, I asked him if he thought I'd do well to follow suit and bring some Amazonian presence back to my sidebar. The chat, though quick, was thorough, or thorough enough, and lead to the inevitable "Why not?" conclusion. It doesn't look too tacky, and if I make a feature out of it, writing little blurbs every now and again, maybe you'll be so kind as to start your Amazon purchases here, at VINYL IS HEAVY, so we (that is, I) can get a teeny-tiny kick-back every month. You know the drill: every bit helps in this economy! The occasional link here and there—and my old suggestion buttons at the bottom of the old sidebar in the old layout—brought in some unexpected and welcome beer money, and now that we're getting more eyes than ever, I thought, why not take up that old shameless shilling tag and put it to good use.
For our first batch of recommendations, we have some obvious VINYL favorites. And, note, that even if you don't buy any of these items, and buy something else, like, say, Gossip Girl Season 1 on DVD, you'll still be helping out if you start here. Thus, in no particular order, here's what we're hocking/highlighting:
- The New World: The Extended Cut on Blu-Ray. I don't have a Blu-Ray player, or a PS3, but if I did this would be the first disc I'd buy because, as many of you may know, it's one of my favorite movies ever, and possibly my second-favorite film of this decade we're ending. It's gorgeous. And the disc is super cheap, which is a bonus. You can read more of my thoughts back at The House Next Door.
- Stanley Cavell's The World Viewed, which I lost only two weeks into the new year on an A-train back to Bed-Stuy from a screening of the mostly-skipped-over California Dreamin, which is a fine little film that my buddy Keith Uhlich likes a great deal. At any rate, Cavell's book is seminal for my thinking. And I've leaned on it, not Bazin, for much of my ontological thoughts about the image. Here's our Stanley Cavell tag.
- Manuel Göttsching's E2-E4, which I first mentioned in the first-ever convergence back on Feb 28th, 2009. It's a bit pricey, since it's only available as an import, but, man, it's something special. The beginnings of so much cool stuff, including LCD Soundsystem's indelible 45:33 mix (according to Wikipedia).
- Arthur Russell's Love is Overtaking Me, which was compiled and released last year, which I made mention of back at this post. If you're feeling blue, or you want someone to touch you in your ears on your way inside, to your heart, maybe, then give this long-player a spin. The title track alone is worth the world.
- The one, the only, the massive, the hilarious: Don Quixote. I've been reading Edith Grossman's translation for a couple months now thanks to a gift from my dad and, boy, this thing is a hoot. Sure, it's big and it'll eat up your time, and you'll be committing to an undertaking, but don't think of it that way: think of all the jokes you get on every page, in every sentence. And Grossman's translation is rightly renowned for its readability (and footnotes).
—Sure do love you out there!