Summer Wakes the Bear Who Sleeps

Summer wakes

Just got Summer Wakes the Bear Who Sleeps by Aaron Youngren and Charles Perrault in the mail for review. It's a book of poetry, one-act plays, sermons, and essays from St. George Rides the Dragon Press. Intriguing. Aaron is pastor of The Line in Chicago.

“Ah, now I see. For this she sleeps. She sleeps the winter gone, as do all of her kind. She sleeps for rest.” “No. The sleep she has chosen is a sleep without rest, a sleep tormented, a sleep that ends in death.” So begins an exploration of human frailty through the lens of fairy tale, image, one-acts, ritual, and poetry. Along the way: volunteerism as modern indulgence and doubt as modern fundamentalism; a father who tries to be a brother, and a brother who won't let him; a heretical text; a ship's captain who wants nothing more than to leave his wife and children. “So you have done all, you have sent all, and still she did not turn. There is nothing more to be done.” “No. There is still one more to send.”

Music Monday: Cheap | New | Free 3.28.11


It's Music Monday and you need some good new music at a good price. Here you go!

CHEAP (Note: I found some of April's $5 albums early. Pick'em up!)

$5 ALBUMS | MARCH (Hurry, ends Thursday!)


    Good New Music (out now)...

    Coming Soon (all coming out tomorrow, March 29th)


New Bon Iver Coming In June


Rolling Stone...

In the three years since Bon Iver released its critically beloved 2007 debut For Emma, Forever Ago, frontman Justin Vernon earned thousands of new fans – including Kanye West, who invited the sensitive singer-songwriter to appear on six songs of My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy.

But when Vernon sat down to work on Bon Iver’s follow-up album, he discovered a problem. “Somewhere along the line, I forgot how to write songs,” he tells Rolling Stone. “I couldn’t do it anymore with a guitar. It wasn’t happening.”

So Vernon – who wrote For Emma while holed up by himself in rural Wisconsin – changed gears, working with studio musicians, trying to build sounds rather than songs. “I brought in a lot of people to change my voice — not my singing voice, but my role as the author of this band, this project,” says Vernon, who hired well-known players like sax man Colin Stetson, who plays with Tom Waits and Arcade Fire, and pedal-steel guitarist Greg Leisz, who recorded with Bill Frissell and Linda Rondstadt. “I built the record myself, but I allowed those people to come in and change the scene.” The album, which is still untitled, is scheduled to come out sometime in June.

If you don't have Bon Iver's two albums, For Emma, Forever Ago (only $6.99) & Blood Bank EP, it's time to catch up and get ready for June. Also check out his stuff with Volcano Choir and Gayngs (though neither compare to the greatness of Bon Iver. Now, when does Beirut's new album come out?

The Poison Tree | Music Discovery

I liked the cover. It was that simple. It intrigued me. So I chose to listen to a live stream of The Poison Tree's new, self-titled album last week. Then I listened again. Loved it. It was released yesterday and I had to pick it up. I want to encourage you to pick it up too. Or listen to it streaming FREE. The clips don't do it justice. Let me know what you think.


The National | "Conversation 16"

I can't express how much love I have for The National. I found them by reading good reviews on three previous albums: Sad Songs for Dirty Lovers (2003) | Alligator (2005) | Boxer (2007). Their 2010 release which was my #2 album of 2010 is High Violet. A stunner. I listened to it again on Saturday and it's oh, so good. It's also only $3.99 (as I write his post). That sale will end any moment, so please rush to grab this amazing album, full of passion and art. And enjoy "Conversation 16" starring, from Mad Men, John Slattery...

The National

Support Reformissionary

After Governor Quinn signed a new tax law, Amazon has terminated all Illinois Associates. Many of my links go through Amazon. It costs you nothing extra, and it supports my me and my family by helping me buy books (I have no book budget at my church), music, and recently my Kindle. Starting April 15th, this revenue ends.

So if anyone can support Refomissionary by clicking through an Amazon link when you need to buy something, it would be greatly appreciated. I very much appreciate how many of you have supported me this way in the past. Some have even emailed me asking for direct links for books and other products so that they could buy what they need and I could bring in a little money. If you are interested in that: pastorsteve [at] gmail [dot] com.

Again, it's at no extra cost to you. It's the same price. But if you click through one of my links over the next month or so, you'll support Reformissionary. Thanks so much for whatever support you can provide. Click on the banner below to buy something! Thanks for anything you can do.

Music Monday: Cheap | New | Free 3.7.11





The Joy Formidable: The Big Roar

The new album from The Joy Formidable: The Big Roar (out March 15th) is streaming FREE at NPR. I'm very impressed with my first listen and hope others will check it out. Their debut, A Balloon Called Moaning, has a couple of the same songs (they changed labels) and is only $5.99. 

The Quietus review says of The Big Roar, "The centrepiece of the album is the shattering wonder of 'Whirring' which is, quite possibly, one of my favourite singles of the last five years." Here's the official video for "Whirring"...

Music Monday: Streaming | Coming Soon 2.28.11

Here are some "coming soon" albums you can stream free now...

Tim Keller | King's Cross -- out today!

Split EP | Brooks Ritter & Jamie Barnes

739026670-1 I recently told you the Split EP -- Brooks Ritter: The War EP & Jamie Barnes: The Mercy Seat EP -- was coming.

It's here. Buy it today or stream it online for free. It's great and I think you'll love it. 

I also highly recommend the previous albums from Sojourn Music. These albums, along with the new split EP, are the only albums my kids insisted I put on their iPods...