“Jinx”: An Excerpt from Dmitry Samarov’s “Music to My Eyes”

Today, we’re pleased to present an excerpt from Dmitry Samarov’s forthcoming book Music to My Eyes, due out on April 1st on Tortoise Books. In it, Samarov turns the spotlight on several of the musicians who have impressed him most over the years, bringing together his impressions of their sound with memories of a changing Chicago — and, of course, his artwork, capturing the energy and emotion of musicians playing before an audience.  

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Permutations, Mutations, and New Ballads: Thoughts on Three Literary Remixes

Ubiquity is a hell of a thing. No two people will have the same narratives, pop culture references, or cultural mythologies dwelling in the back of their heads–but there are certain stories that are familiar enough to enough people that they’re ripe for retelling. Or, in some cases, they’re ripe for modification, for translation into another narrative, playing with readers’ expectations and knowledge of the source material. To cite a few examples, John Darnielle’s short novel Master of Reality used […]

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Quiet Moments Amidst Musical Chaos: A Review of Tim Kinsella’s “All Over and Over”

I’ve known Tim Kinsella almost twenty years. He used to work at the coffee shop I haunted. Then, many years later, he interviewed me when my first book came out. Then he commissioned me to paint a cover for one of his records. I wouldn’t say we’re close friends but over the years we’ve had many good talks and there’s a level of mutual respect between us. I’ve never been in a band or been on tour (aside from a […]

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A Revitalized Featherproof Books

Chicago’s featherproof books has, over the years, released excellent books from the likes of Blake Butler, Lindsay Hunter, Amelia Gray, and Tim Kinsella. (Full disclosure: I contributed to their minibook series several years ago.) This summer has brought with it the news that Kinsella will be taking over the press. In a recent interview with Chicago, Kinsella discussed his plans:

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