10 December 2010


I am currently finishing up A Clash of Kings by George RR Martin. I am also listening to a great deal of a band I've just discovered called Wolves in the Throne Room. They work astonishingly well together.

People who haven't read Martin's Song of Ice and Fire series (which tale has, apparently, grown in the telling) should know that this series is about as close as you can get to actual history, but with dragons, wizards and other stuff that just turns real life (circa approximately 1375-ish, if I'm reading it right) up to eleven. It's bloody (literally) amazing. The characters are as vivid as anything Suetonius ever wrote -- or perhaps Procopius would be a more accurate comparison. (Since, with the magic and stuff, people's heads might actually go wandering around on their own. It wouldn't surprise me, in this series, though I'm kind of hard to surprise at the best of times.)

Wolves in the Throne Room, on the other hand, is a pagan-influenced band from the pacific northwest, someplace or other. Unlike many bands, however, that interpret "pagan" to mean "Satanic," Wolves in the Throne Room display a refreshingly organic sensibility, their music growing naturally to fast-paced crescendos from slow, growing beginnings. At least, that's what their second album (I think it'sthe second one, anyway), Two Hunters, sounds like. I've been given to understand, by Pitchfork, anyway,that their other stuff is more straight-up metal-icious.

Listening to Wolves in the Throne Room, on the other hand, while reading George RR Martin, is an experience not to be missed. Like wine and cheese, man. The music perfectly suits the appalling tension Martin builds and releases so expertly (usually in the form of someone dying horribly). It's wonderful.

(There is a bunch of other stuff going on right now, too, mostly involving plays I don't want much to do with but have been told to direct anyway, and trying to get back to school without incurring mountains of debt, but this kind of thing is more fun to talk about, anyway.)

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