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Neutral Milk Hotel's In the Aeroplane Over the Sea (33 1/3) Paperback – 1 Oct 2004


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Product details

  • Paperback: 119 pages
  • Publisher: Bloomsbury Continuum (1 Oct 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 082641690X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0826416902
  • Product Dimensions: 12.1 x 0.7 x 16.7 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 108,705 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author


My newest book is "The Kept Girl" (Esotouric Ink, 2014), a novel of 1929 Los Angeles featuring the young Raymond Chandler, his devoted secretary and the real-life cop who is a likely model for Philip Marlowe (http://www.thekeptgirl.com). Close to my heart is my grandma Barbara "Cutie" Cooper's memoir, "Fall in Love For Life: Inspiration from a 73-year Marriage" (Chronicle), which comes out of the viral sensation that was my grandparents' video blog, The OGs (http://www.the-ogs.com). Previously, I wrote an oral history about "Neutral Milk Hotel's 'In The Aeroplane Over the Sea'" (Continuum 33 1/3), co-edited the anthologies "Lost in the Grooves" and "Bubblegum Music is the Naked Truth," and for many years published Scram, a journal of unpopular culture (back issues at http://www.scrammagazine.com). I took a break from music writing to create the time travel blogs 1947project, On Bunker Hill and In SRO Land, which offer alternate histories of early Los Angeles, and which opened up a new world of creative possibility. Now, with my husband Richard Schave I lead curious souls on Esotouric's offbeat bus tours into the secret heart of Los Angeles (The Real Black Dahlia, Raymond Chandler's LA, Charles Bukowski's LA, Blood & Dumplings, East Side Babylon) and produce the weekly podcast You Can't Eat the Sunshine, which one fan described as "Huell Howser on steroids." Learn about our L.A. history events, many of them free, at http://www.lavatransforms.org. My campaign to save the historic 76 Balls from destruction resulted in ConocoPhillips agreeing to donate the gas station signs to museums nationwide.

Product Description

Review

Much of the Neutral  Milk story has been pieced together over the years, but never as  comprehensively as in Kim Cooper's Neutral Milk Hotel's In The Aeroplane Over  the Sea. --Real Detroit Weekly,  December 7, 2005

About the Author

Kim Cooper is the publisher and editor of Scram, an occasional journal of unpopular culture dedicated to celebrating unjustly neglected artists in the worlds of music, literature, film/TV, comics and bohemia. She is the co-editor of Bubblegum Music is the Naked Truth, and also of the acclaimed Lost in the Grooves: Scram's Capricious Guide to the Music You Missed, (Routledge, 2004). She lives in Los Angeles.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Joel on 30 Dec 2006
Format: Paperback
In The Aeroplane Over The Sea has claimed a very special place in my heart, but I must admit I was a little sceptical when I discovered this book; I couldn't really see how someone could write anything about it that would really add anything to my enjoyment of the album or make for a really worthwhile read. However, my curiousity and the cheap price led me to a purchase, and I was happily surprised.

It's obvious that Kim Cooper has just fallen in love with Neutral Milk Hotel's second album in the way that I imagine you have, if you're reading this. The writing is thoughtful and direct, and enthusiastic without being too immaturely praiseworthy of the album; the writer just seems passionate about learning as much about NMH as she can, and sharing it with you as you read. It's very engaging and in just over 100 to-the-point pages it covers pretty much everything you'd want to know, from the musician's childhoods, to how the band formed, to how the beautiful songs from In The Aeroplane.. arose. There's then a detailed section on the album itself, focusing on the songs and the artwork. Finally it gets onto what happened after the album was released and all the subsequent touring, and gives an explanation of why Jeff Mangum decided to step back out of the spotlight.

Most of the precise information comes from interviews carried out by Kim Cooper which are included seamlessly in the book, and she managed to find all the right people. The only key figure who doesn't contribute to the book is Jeff Mangum, but that isn't really suprising, and you imagine that Kim Cooper tried but eventually just respected his privacy.

You'll no doubt have gathered that this book is only going to appeal to die-hard fans of Neutral Milk Hotel and In The Aeroplane Over The Sea, but if that's you this provides a fascinating and well-written glimpse into what went into such a tremendous album. Definitely recommended.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By "syrianmerchant" on 17 Feb 2006
Format: Paperback
This is an incredible book. I bought it out of curiosity, as I'm a big Elephant 6 and Neutral Milk Hotel fan, but what I got is a book that is a very good piece of journalism which tells a rich story about a sensitive genius and the extended group of friends around him who helped him realize the full potential of the truly amazing songs that he wrote. This book starts with the often-repeated story of the core members of the Elephant 6 collective (Jeff Mangum, Robert Schneider, Bill Doss and Will Cullen Hart), before branching off to focus on Neutral Milk Hotel. Ultimately, it gives a very in-depth (but not over-long) account of how the band, and then the album this book is at face value about, came to be. I'm not usually a very fast reader, but I read this book in about a day, and I kept on coming back to it after putting it down, which is very rare for me. This is because, unlike most books, this book doesn't waste a single word in telling it's story, and plus it all really happened, which makes it even better.
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9 of 12 people found the following review helpful By Jason Parkes #1 HALL OF FAME on 24 Feb 2006
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The 33 1/3 series is clearly a major contribution to discussion of popular music - excellent contributions thus far include Joe Pernice's 'Meat is Murder', Michaelangelo Matos' 'Sign'O'the Times', Andy Miller's 'The Kinks are the Village Green Preservation Society' & Bill Janovitz's 'Exile on Main Street.' There are some great titles in the series I'm going to get to at some point - 'Let It Be', 'Endtroducing', 'Murmur' and upcoming books on 'Loveless', 'Daydream Nation', 'Doolittle' & 'There's a Riot Goin' On'. Clearly devoting a book to one album is a great idea and antithetical to the listy phase of things at present or the fairly brief articles these days. Though I'm not sure books on 'Abba Gold' or 'OK Computer' are particularly interesting - everything has a flaw?
Kim Cooper's meticulously written book focuses on "In the Aeroplane Over the Sea" by Neutral Milk Hotel, a record that surfaced in the late 1990s and became extemely culty. It is only with its reissue on Domino records last year that this cult has been addressed - its following in America is immense and it has become the kind of record websites and their cyber musings amass around. Personally the first time I heard the record I was slightly confounded, more to the seemingly cut-up lyrics which appeared to allude to WWII - I wondered if comprehending the lyrics would involve smoking something illicit and watching as much of 'The World at War' as is possible. Perhaps then things would be illuminated?
So, Cooper's book is probably an ideal primer to a great record - like some books on 'Ulysses' it can help crystallise certain ideas going on here. Cooper's book isn't a conventional track-by-track analysis like the 33 1/3 on '...
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By Matt Adams on 26 May 2014
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Simply great. If you have any experience or relationship with "In The Aeroplane Over The Sea" then I implore you to buy this book. I cannot believe I went all this time without knowing the full details of it's creation.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Simon Turner on 2 Mar 2008
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Unfortunately this book is one of the weakest of the 33 1/3 series. So many of the others books are more engaging. Some put us in the head of people who were growing up at the time of a record coming out, others look in-depth at an album and a band. This book does neither, really being all about how they care for each other a lot and move from here to there to there in the country, giving nothing in the way of vignettes to give us a glimpse of how they are or what it was like. The attempts at analysis finally come but there's such a lack of confidence and they are so sketchy that it's hardly worth it after all. In contrast, Meat Is Murder, Let It Be (Replacements), The Kinks Are The Village Green Preservation Society and Doolittle are all a great read.
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