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Grantland on "A True Trans Soul Rebel"

Posted by - 12:04 PM on 01/14/14
Grantland's Steven Hyden has written a great article on Against Me!'s latest release (which, if you have been living under a rock, is streaming here).
“The record almost fucking killed the band,” Grace told me two weeks ago as we sat backstage before a concert in Grand Rapids, Michigan. “It was me and James who finished the record at the most depressing studio you’ve ever been in in your life in Valdosta, Georgia. The walls were all painted black. And, literally, the engineer had a gun strapped to his belt the whole time. It was just, like, the end. It was fucking weird.”
 
Displaying posts 1 - 15 of 54
12:16 PM on 01/14/14
#2
Chris Collum
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Steven Hyden's been writing some great stuff of late, excited to dig into this.
12:35 PM on 01/14/14
#3
Circa1628
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This was a great read! I've never been a huge Against Me! fan, but I think after listening to their new album, it appears that it will be their essential record. It marks a new era for the band, and the lyrics and concept are absolutely incredible.
12:36 PM on 01/14/14
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Jason Tate
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Also, while I got people wanting to read things -- I really thought this piece was great as well:
A little bit of writerly advice, then: Surgery of any kind is personal, and an expression of entitlement to such detail is invasive at best. It’s as irrelevant to your critical work as asking whether or not Oasis are circumcised.

There are considerations and conventions that non-trans people need to learn. This is not negotiable. We need to know that language can be hostile to trans people, that language can prescribe and enforce the dominant heteronormative discourse, and that we—as cosigners on the social contract that is language—have every right to modify the way we speak about gender and transitioning in order to demarginalize those individuals whose realities are not served by their own tongue.
12:40 PM on 01/14/14
#5
OldSchoolReason
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Excellent read - crazy that Brendan from Larry Arms has known for years
12:40 PM on 01/14/14
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Jaytothesyg
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Wow fantastic read.

I also really thought the Brendan Kelly interview with Tom (Laura) in there was a very nice touch
12:43 PM on 01/14/14
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jordalsh
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wonderful article
12:47 PM on 01/14/14
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xHoodieWeather
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Amazing read. Few people stop and think about how making this album really was almost like Russian roulette for the people involved (I'm sure the ones who bailed as far as studios, personnel, etc, worried about career suicide or not connecting with their own art or whatever). The experience shared is specific, and while the message of self acceptance is universal, the specific subject of trans identities not only fails to connect to a large group, it also turns another group away from the album altogether. I can see why keeping bandmates can be hard when the album is something that might make even them feel disconnected, but I think against me is much stronger now for releasing the album despite all that. While some people may say it's a gimmick theme for the album that will help sales because of the press coverage of the Laura story, I think it's what makes the album stand out. Most albums are worried about being gimmicky and end up lacking honesty. This was clearly the main aspect of Laura's life and as the songwriter it makes sense the album portrayed that. All in all, the album and the article are both fantastic and I hope it can reach more audiences and I hope it makes people uncomfortable because it should. I felt uncomfortable because it's something I've never even been close to, not in a disapproving way, just in a way that felt like I was listening to something really personal. It was a refreshing feeling when compared to listening to albums that hide in fake cynicism or an overly jaded persona.
12:48 PM on 01/14/14
#9
MelissaMDaniels
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Steven Hyden is everything a music journalist should be nowadays. Smart, literary, real, not above it, still a fan, interested in the artist. <3 his work, way to go AP for the shoutout. Bookmarking this for a post-work read while listening to the stream for sure.
12:48 PM on 01/14/14
jordalsh
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Also, while I got people wanting to read things -- I really thought this piece was great as well:
A little bit of writerly advice, then: Surgery of any kind is personal, and an expression of entitlement to such detail is invasive at best. It’s as irrelevant to your critical work as asking whether or not Oasis are circumcised.

There are considerations and conventions that non-trans people need to learn. This is not negotiable. We need to know that language can be hostile to trans people, that language can prescribe and enforce the dominant heteronormative discourse, and that we—as cosigners on the social contract that is language—have every right to modify the way we speak about gender and transitioning in order to demarginalize those individuals whose realities are not served by their own tongue.
everyone should read this
12:48 PM on 01/14/14
Chris Collum
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Great read, and props to Hyden for showing how you should write about someone who is trans. Also yeah the anecdote about Brendan from Larry Arms is nuts.
12:59 PM on 01/14/14
kaylasananjou
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Wow fantastic read.

I also really thought the Brendan Kelly interview with Tom (Laura) in there was a very nice touch
Please don't refer to her as Tom. She has told us for years now what her name is, and there's no reason for the name "Tom" to be used anymore. Not trying to be rude or start anything-- just be considerate of her wishes.
01:10 PM on 01/14/14
lovemetal24
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Please don't refer to her as Tom. She has told us for years now what her name is, and there's no reason for the name "Tom" to be used anymore. Not trying to be rude or start anything-- just be considerate of her wishes.
I think people have a right to call him/her anything they would like
01:11 PM on 01/14/14
jordalsh
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I think people have a right to call him/her anything they would like
they absolutely do not. and it's "her," it's not a question or an uncertainty.
01:16 PM on 01/14/14
tom_q
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From the the first song my year was already made, it is the painfully honest music i needed to put my own problems in perspective.

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