The secret life of teens

Je me demandais quoi écouter en lisant “La vie secrete des jeunes de Riad Satouf”, et puis je suis tombée sur un vieux Technikart dans lequel il explique que la bande son des années de l’adolescence, selon lui, c’est la musique des jeux Amiga, qu’il écoutait en boucle.  Voilà!

Riad Sattouff has a knack for speaking about teens. But what to listen to while reading his comic book, “the secret life of teens”? He himself provided the answer in a Technikart interview, as he explains the sound to his teenage years was the music of his Amiga games.

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Filed under Little treats- Les petites gateries, Modern Lit, Uncategorized

What to listen when you write?

It seems Michael Cunningham has the answer, and he explains it at the occasion of the orginal music album for “The Hours”  .

So here is a bit of Philip Glass to get in the mood.

But what did Micheal Cunningham write “By Nightfall ” to? He mentionned it while he was last in Brussels. The answer here soon.

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Klezmer, Joann Sfar

Since Seeqpod went down, I’ve felt a bit helpless, without my favorite tool for this blog.If anyone knows of a good replacement, please let me know!

In the meantime, I’ve fallen in love. Also with this series: Klezmer, by Joann Sfar.

As Sfar himself puts it, “the idea of making a comic about music interests me greatly, as comics are a world of silence“.

Therefore, he may well find it pointless to listen to Klezmer music while reading his comic, rather than just imagining rythms, colors and sounds . Still, the book makes a great introduction into the genre, therefore I suggest listening to these tracks -some of which he himself mentions as inspirations in his postface- after reading. For once.

I could not find Belz, from Moshe Leider, but here’s another one from him. In the meantime, I’m getting started with volume II.

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Ovide- The Art of Love

“Love is a kind of warfare. Slackers, dismiss!

There are no cowards guarding this standard.

Night and winter, long roads and cruel sorrows,

and every kind of labour are found on love’s campaigns.

You’ll often endure rain pouring from heavenly clouds,

and frozen, lie there on the naked earth.

They say that Phoebus grazed Admetus’s cattle,

and found shelter in a humble hut.

Who can’t suit what suited Phoebus? Lose your pride,

you who’d have love’s sorrows tamed.

If you’re denied a safe and level road,

and the door barred with a bolt against you,

then drop down head-first through the open roof:

a high window too offers a secret way.

She’ll be glad, knowing the chase itself is risky for you:

that will be sure proof to the lady of your love.

You might often have been parted from your girl, Leander:

you swam across so she could know your heart.


When thinking of a classic, Ovide’s “Ars amatoria” came to mind. It seems since Ovide, unfortunately, the art of loving, if there is such a thing, hasn’t much changed. So, some contemporary, and slightly cynical love songs about wait, nostalgy, separation and longing,. According to Ovide, it’s all part of the process.


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Where Where You When the Fun Stopped?

Someone here kindly suggested to listen to Hunter Thompson’s own mixtape. I did that and here’s the result in a playlist, some good ole fashioned american music. Or at least some of the tracks on it as this now cult album is hard to find.

Warren Zevon said, “Jesus Marauding Christ! This is the hippest album in the world.” I say, let’s not exagerate!


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Fear and loathing in Las Vegas – Hunter Thompson

Oh, here’s another book about being free and careless and irresponsible, as well as totally tasteless. I suppose nowadays you’d just say Trash.  As for me, I’ll keep treasuring that one moment:

– “When are you taking off?”, Bruce asked.
-“As soon as possible, I said. “No point hanging around this town any longer. I have all I need. Anything else would only confuse me.”
He seemed surprised. “You found the American Dream?”he said. “In this town”? I nodded. “We’re sitting on the main nerve right now”, I said.

Encore un livre qui parle d’être libre et irresponsable, inconscient, dans une Amérique en déliquescence. Et le rêve américain dans tout ca?

Click here to listen to the dedicated soundtrack

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Pilules bleues- Frederik Peteers

A graphic novel and a playlist about modern love. Ah, this modern love.

Un roman graphique et une playlist a propos de ce putain d’amour moderne.

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Filed under French lit- Littérature francaise, Modern Lit, Uncategorized

Coin Locker Babies – Ryu Murakami

A Japan feature for this Sunday, since my mind’s been around that country for  a while. And a great book by Murakami (the other one) , “Coin Locker babies”.  This is a book with no hope. This a book on how life is a bitch. And it goes well with J Pop and mostly, some J Rock and Visual Key. So, weird stuff for a change, including 70’s Psycho rock from Kyoto. Since one of the babies has a go as rock star.


Cela fait un moment que je pense au Japon. Du coup je vous propose “les bébés de la consigne automatique”, de Murakami (l’autre). Un bouquin absolument superbe et à se prendre en pleine face. Pour écouter avec de la J Pop, J rock, Visual Key et même du rock psychédélique de Kyoto. Vu que l’un des frérots de la consigne se frotte à une carrière de Rock star.

Et il parait qu’un film avec Asia Argento  et Val Kilmer est envoie d’être produit.

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Jeffrey Eugenides- The Virgin Suicides

This book is best know due to the Sophia Coppola adaptation. It’s about desire, longing, and the absolute totalness about being a teenager. It’s very boyish, too I think.


It starts like this:

” On the morning the last Lisbon daughter took her turn at suicide-it was Mary this time, and sleeping pills, like Therese-the two paramedics arrived at the house knowing exactly where the knife drawer was, and the gas oven, and the beam in the basement from which it was possible to tie a rope. They got out of the EMS truck, as usual moving much too slowly in our opinion, and the fat one said under his breath, “This ain’t TV, folks, this is how fast we go.” He was carrying the heavy respirator and cardiac unit past the bushes that had grown monstrous and over the erupting lawn, tame and immaculate thirteen months earlier when the trouble began.
Cecilia, the youngest, only thirteen, had gone first, slitting her wrists like a Stoic while taking a bath, and when they found her, afloat in her pink pool, with the yellow eyes of someone possessed and her small body giving off the odor of a mature woman, the paramedics had been so frightened by her tranquillity that they had stood mesmerized. But then Mrs. Lisbon lunged in, screaming, and the reality of the room reasserted itself: blood on the bath mat; Mr. Lisbon’s razor sunk in the toilet bowl, marbling the water. The paramedics fetched Cecilia out of the warm water because it quickened the bleeding, and put a tourniquet on her arm. Her wet hair hung down her back and already her extremities were blue. She didn’t say a word, but when they parted her hands they found the laminated picture of the Virgin Mary she held against her budding chest.”

And here’s the suggested soundtrack.

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Nick Hornby- High Fidelity

“Is it possible to share your life with someone whose record collection is incompatible with your own? Can people have terrible taste and still be worth knowing? Do songs about broken hearts and misery and loneliness mess up your life if consumed in excess? For Rob Fleming, thirty-five years old, a pop addict and owner of a failing record shop, these are the sort of questions that need an answer, and soon. His girlfriend has just left him. Can he really go on living in a poky flat surrounded by vinyl and CDs or should he get a real home, a real family and a real job? Perhaps most difficult of all, will he ever be able to stop thinking about life in terms of the All Time Top Five bands, books, films, songs – even now that he’s been dumped again, the top five break-ups?


This is, basically, High Fidelity. As books and soundtracks go, this one seemed unavoidable.

Here are, therefore “favorite records, single” and a couple of “floor fillers at the Groucho”


And, since this book was adapted on screen, here are some extracts from the High Fidelity soundtrack, which even has Stereolab in it, and Elvis Costello too.


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