I'm listening to Emile Haynie's debut album, We Fall, at the moment and it's blowing me away. I posted a song from it below (Come Find Me) which I instantly loved. The album, released yesterday, does not disappoint. In addition to collaborating with Lykke Li who I love, the album also features Brian Wilson, Rufus Wainwright, Lana Del Rey, Randy Newman, Father John Misty AND MORE. Is your head exploding? Mine is. Quite honestly, I hadn't heard of Emile Haynie until yesterday. After reading more about him, I'm surprised that his name wasn't familiar because he has produced quite a few artists. He's from Buffalo, New York, which instantly makes me admire him (I love Buffalo), and I think you all know what I'm trying to say here: I have a massive crush on him, creatively. A creative crush. And check out this album cover, which looks like my own personal heaven. Sigh.
I went to see Red Army last night in an almost empty theatre at Yonge and Dundas, my first time there. That theatre is massive! I think I went up ten escalators. The documentary tells the story of the Soviet Union's Red Army hockey team in a series of interviews with the captain Slava Fetisov, and some of the other Russian Five. Insightful commentary on both hockey and socialism, it really made an impact on me. We only see a fraction of what the players went through, and what it was like living in Russia at that time. It's enough to make you think about how fortunate we are to live in Canada. You also see the benefits of dedication, hard work and structure alongside creativity and the camaraderie and trust that exists between teammates. The best examples of that seemed to be under the coach Anatoli Tarasov. I tried to find a clip of him on youtube but they aren't as good - so just watch the movie and see for yourself.
It's like trying to find a dark cat in a dark room, it's not funny
I always feel like somebody's watching me. Are you singing it now too? I can't read or think those words without singing it and I'm going to be singing it for the rest of the day. Ever since I woke up to this stink glare from the fluffiest cat on the planet. It's a two way street though, I spend a lot of time staring at him. My stare is just less menacing and more loving. He clearly wants something from me, and my guess is tuna. This cat is insatiable. More so than any cat I have ever met. Although when I think about it, I haven't known too many cats. I don't want to give him too much credit. Living with him has definitely increased the amount of time I spend singing that Rockwell song (in my head of course). And I will admit, whether or not he is plotting my death or just wanting something, I feel pretty special when those eyes are directed at me.
I am so incredibly pumped that Alabama Shakes has a new song out, and a new album coming April 21. I just want to get out of my cozy bed and dance around. Not actually, but I did seriously consider it. Florence + the Machine also has a new single - I'm reluctantly including the link because it did nothing for me and I consider myself to be a fan. I was certainly not compelled to listen to it 3 times in a row like I may or may not be doing with Don't Wanna Fight...
Self reflection is something I do a lot of. Some might say too much. Lucid dreaming is something I have experienced before and it's very confusing. Not something I've mastered and not something that requires elaborating. A few weeks ago a friend sent me this article (Lucid Dreamers Show Better Self-Reflecting Capabilities When Awake) which talks about a recent study which analyzes the correlation between the two. Most interestingly:
"As described in The Journal of Neuroscience, the brain images revealed that the most frequent lucid dreamers had greater volume in a brain region called the anterior prefrontal cortex compared to those within the low-lucidity group. This area is involved in controlling conscious cognitive processes and also plays a role in our ability to self-reflect. Alongside this apparent change in brain structure, the researchers also observed differences in brain function. They found that those in the highly lucid group displayed more activity in this brain region during megacognitive, or thought monitoring, tests while awake."
Which also made me think of a recent episode of a new npr podcast called Invisibilia. It talks about new developments in brain science, I find it fascinating. I think the more we know about ourselves and how our brains work, the better we become at understanding the world and the people around us. There is so much we don't know about the brain, and a lot of what the neuroscientists are studying today was once thought of as new age and quickly dismissed. That means a lot has been overlooked in recent decades. I am curious to see the impact of the studies and new information that is coming available to us regular folk.
I read this article last week called Why We Should Be More Self-Accepting (According to Science) that a friend sent me. If science is involved, I'm in. Actually it's mostly an info-graphic which is an even easier way for me to absorb information. It describes self-compassion as; self-kindness, understanding common humanity and mindfulness, also noting that it is often confused with; self-pity, self-indulgence and making excuses for bad behaviour. The basic idea behind this is that we can increase our level of happiness (how do you measure happiness, is there a test I can take at the doctors?) by being as kind to ourselves as we are (theoretically) to others. Seemingly simple and logical until the inner critic speaks up. The info-graphic offers a bunch of ideas on how to fight off that noisy inner critic and be a better human, especially during life's rough patches.