Carnival of souls: Fluxblog turns 10, Ron Regé Jr. to Fantagraphics, more

* My friend Matthew Perpetua invented the mp3 blog when he launched the mighty Fluxblog ten years ago. He’s celebrating the anniversary with a series of his trademark, massive “survey” mixes, each one a multi-disc affair spotlighting the best music for each year Fluxblog’s been around. Here’s the 8-disc Fluxblog 2002 survey mix. I’m particularly gratified to see the big response in the comments for the Azure Ray and Doves songs — two of my all-time favorites.

* Fantagraphics will be publishing Ron Regé Jr.’s The Cartoon Utopia! That’s a big vote of support for a risky artist. Good for everyone involved.

* Ross Campbell is sorta semi-serializing Wet Moon Vol. 6 on his website, along with a bunch of bonus materials. I know he was bummed that Oni couldn’t fit the book into their publishing schedule until next Fall, so I’m glad they worked this out in order to get the work out there sooner.

* This interview with the Dandy Warhols’ Courtney Taylor-Taylor about his and Jim Rugg’s soon-to-be-re-released graphic novel about a leftist art-rock band One Model Nation reminds me that Taylor-Taylor is one of the great rock and roll talkers. Of all the interviews I’ve ever done, I probably think about stuff he said the most frequently. You’d be amazed how applicable a passionate endorsement of seeing Cinderella perform live is to any number of situations in everyday life.

* Tucker Stone reviews a couple dozen comics for The Savage Critics, i.e. more comics than I’ve reviewed in the last four or five months. Lots of gems in there, with two caveats: 1) He’s dead wrong about Garden being worse than Travel; 2) The impetus for the post is that these are comics he “couldn’t find the time (or space) to write about in a more ‘professional’ capacity,” which means that no website or publication out there is making it worth Tucker’s while to write about Acme Novelty Library or Kramers Ergot 3 and so on, which is a crime.

* Terrific review of Habibi and Paying For It by comiXology’s Kristy Valenti, who refers to them cheekily as “Dick Lit.” It’s hardly as dismissive a piece as that would make it out to be, though, and it’s stuffed with why-didn’t-I-think-of-that observations: Seth and Joe Matt as the Charlotte and Miranda to Chester Brown’s Carrie Bradshaw; the highlighted, isolated, orderly beds upon which Chester and the prostitutes he hires have sex as an operating theater. And by focusing on sex and love as the driving force behind Habibi she points the way to just how interesting it ought to be to see Craig Thompson do an out-and-out porn comic, as he apparently plans to do.

* Kate Beaton is signing off of Hark, a Vagarant! for a while, which is a bummer but an understandable one given the whole world throwing itself at her feet and all. I just hope she keeps getting to draw people’s hair, eyes, and hands.

* That’s a gorgeous Jillian Tamaki illustration is what that is.

* And Kali Ciesemier ain’t no slouch either.

* Yeesh, this is quite a page from Geoff Grogan’s Nice Work, which he’s begun serializing on his website.

* Mark P. Hensel interviews Ryan Cecil Smith. And Ao Meng also interviews Ryan Cecil Smith. Saving these for when I can read them back to back.

* Saving this for later, too: Amypoodle’s Batman Incorporated: Leviathan Strikes! annotations, part two. Any post on Batman comics that kicks off with a Oneohtrix Point Never video is okay in my book.

* At the always excellent Comics Grid, Peter Wilkins writes about the wonderful heartachey North No. 2 piano-playing interlude in Naoki Urasawa’s Pluto.

* I look at the villain mini-figures for Lego’s Lord of the Rings line and can see nothing but the hours and hours I will spend smashing them to bits in some future Lego LotR video game.

* Allow me to be the last to direct you to the latest Game of Thrones Season Two trailer.

* Finally, D’Angelo presents the feel-good clip of the year, if you’re a D’Angelo fan. Try not to grin like an idiot during this. (Via Pitchfork.)

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2 Responses to Carnival of souls: Fluxblog turns 10, Ron Regé Jr. to Fantagraphics, more

  1. ----comix says:

    You know, Tucker’s the only comic critic I’m totally unwilling to piss off (and not because I’m afraid of his vengeance, guy seems like a total teddybear), but I’m pretty baffled that he’s capable of feeling any emotion at all towards the “characters” in a Yuichi Yokoyama comic. Not to mention it’s pretty weird that he finds Garden so obviously inferior to Travel that he doesn’t find it necessary to give a single reason why! (The difference in printing quality isn’t obvious to me, anyway — and how do you even “rank” anything by Yuichi Yokoyama?)

  2. If you’re gonna talk about the mechanics of the books as printed publications, then I would tend to rank Color Engineering and New Engineering lower because I’m not nuts about the footnote approach to translation/subtitles. (I’m also just not attracted to his color/painted work the way many people are, in the case of Color Engineering.) But I take your points. I mean, I could come up with a list of reasons why someone MIGHT find Travel self-evidently superior to Garden, from “less nattering dialogue” to “more focused action,” but I’d certainly like to hear Tucker’s.

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