Tag Archives: The Last Waltz

April 20

On Saturday, Kat and I had our first anniversary. Whoa, a full year has passed since we first met… it blows my mind when I think about it because so much has happened in such short period of time that I often feel like we have been together for ages. It reminds me of what Joshua Foer wrote in Moonwalking with Einstein: “Monotony collapses time; novelty unfolds it.”

Anyway, Saturday was a fantastic day with blue skies so I cycled all the way to Sort Kaffe og Vinyl in Vesterbro to enjoy a cup of coffee in the sun and then decided to drop by Sound Station to soak up some of that joyful atmosphere they always create on Record Store Day. They really do make an effort to make everyone feel welcome. I had promised myself I wouldn’t buy anything but as soon as I started browsing through the shop’s wonderful stock of vinyls, I knew I was going to have a hard time living up to the vow of restraint I had naively taken.

Things started slowly, bagging just a couple of records: Groundhogs’ “Who Will Save The World?” (which I wanted mostly for the cover artwork) and The Band’s “The Last Waltz”, which I thought would make for a great anniversary present considering it’s one of Kat’s favourite records. I kept on looking and I kept finding stuff I liked: Spiritualized’s “Ladies and Gentlemen, We’re Floating In Space” and Radiohead’s “In Rainbows”; nothing particularly special about them, they are just records I really enjoy. At this point, I was kind of ready to leave but on my way to the counter I spotted two girls in the shop, one holding a copy of the “Singles” soundtrack and the other one with a Screaming Trees record… I knew right away there was a section of the shop I was missing. I went back to the entrance and looked around. There it was, an entire “Alternative and Heavy” selection of records I hadn’t checked when I arrived.

In hindsight, I should have walked away from it but I just couldn’t, I had to see what they had. That’s when things got a bit out of control: Soundgarden’s “Louder Than Live” white label promo, “The Day I Tried To Live” 12″ etched vinyl, and “Jesus Christ Pose” special edition 4-track etched vinyl; Iron Maiden’s “Live After Dead” (Dutch version with inner sleeves and a booklet full of my friend Ross Halfin’s photos), “The Number of the Beast” and “A Real Dead One” label promo on clear vinyl; AC/DC’s “Dirty Deeds Done Dirt Cheap” and “The Razor’s Edge”; Slinth’s “Spiderland” and The Kink’s greatest hits, which I eventually got for free courtesy of the shop.

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In the end, I took home THIRTEEN records! Fucking ridiculous. I cycled home holding to full bags of vinyl hanging from my bike’s handlebar, with a big smile on my face and the wind blowing in my hair (and the bags), making my ride home slightly harder than usual. Shortly after I got home, Kat arrived with our new dining table (a red, round piece from the 60’s) and we went for a walk around Bispebjerg Kirkegård to see the cherry trees and their famous blossoms, which are probably a local trending topic on Instagram.

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I hadn’t seen them before and I have to say, the view is stunning. We got a couple of random people to take a picture of us standing under the trees, both with my phone and our Instax mini camera, and much to my surprise, the results were quite nice. We went back home, listened to some of our new records and left the house again around 5pm to go to Taller, a new restaurant in town with a menu inspired by Venezuelan gastronomy and flavours. We were a bit skeptical at first but once we finished, both Kat and I agreed it was probably one of the nicest dinners we have ever had together.

The Venezuelan influence was clearly reflected in the majority of the dishes we tried (especially the mini arepas, the guasacaca and the dessert) and the wine they paired with our 4-course menu couldn’t have been better. On top of that, the service was impeccable. We’re definitely coming back once they change the menu, we had an outstanding experience.

On Sunday, we went with Monika to Louisiana Museum to check the Richard Mosse exhibition, and to enjoy the weather. I had never been to Louisiana before and I was blown away by its beauty. It’s was so quiet and green, with a wonderful garden overlooking the sea. I don’t know why I hadn’t visited before but I will do my best to come back often, it really is an amazing place. We went through the permanent exhibitions, including the Gleaming Lights installation by Yayoi Kusama, and ended up with the Richard Mosse exhibition, which was terrific. Those photos really strike you when you see them in all their glory. Strangely beautiful considering the dark subject that inspired them.

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We ended the day at home, drinking wine and watching the EELS concert at the Royal Albert Hall, a film I had been wanting to see since I heard it was going to be released.

A great time was had by all.

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August 15

Last night, Kat took me to Cinemateket to see one of her favourite movies: “The Last Waltz”, a film by Martin Scorsese that documents The Band‘s farewell show in San Francisco, back 1976. The movie features scenes shot on a studio soundstage, interviews by Scorsese with members of The Band and, of course, songs from the actual concert, which included guest appearances by Bob Dylan, Neil Young, Muddy Waters, Ronny Wood, Eric Clapton, Van Morrison, Joni Mitchell, Neil Diamond, Ring Starr and a bunch of other musicians I don’t know much about.

The screening started at 10pm, which is a bit late for me, but despite having to struggle a bit to not fall asleep, I really enjoyed it. Beyond the fact that it was a musical film, which in general tend to appeal to me, what I liked the most was how pleased the band looked on stage; there they were these guys, at the peak of their career, saying goodbye to all of it without a single visible trace of nostalgia or remorse. That’s my impression, anyway; I barely know The Band so I might as well gotten it all wrong.

In any case, the film is worth watching, for a few reasons: 

1. The cover version of Marvin Gaye’s “Don’t Do It” is great and it’s the first song you will hear in the movie (it was actually the encore of the show but, for some reason, it’s the opening track in the film)

2. Neil Young looks very stoned, especially towards the end. I find that funny.

3. Muddy Waters. Do I need to say more?

4. The Band is entertaining, sometimes even funny. I particularly found Robbie Robertson to be a very likeable guy.

Now, there are also things I didn’t like that much about the film, like Neil Diamond and some of the most folky-softy-tacky songs the band played. I’m just not that kind of guy. However, what really annoyed me was that at the end of the show, when all the guest go onstage in a “we are the world, we are the children” kind of spirit, Ronnie Wood comes out, takes the right side of the stage and remains there throughout the whole song without the director showing him AT ALL. Not even once. There was the guy that had collaborated with Mick Jagger on “It’s Only Rock n’ Roll (But I Like It)”, a guy that would end up joining The Rolling Stones the year after, and he can barely seen in the film. Nonsense.

If you can leave that aside and don’t hate Bob Dylan as much as Kat does, give the film a try. There’s a high chance you will enjoy it.

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