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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 Real Detroit Weekly)
These books are individual love letters to the albums themselves, shedding light on the deepest, most tucked-away aspects of the creative processes that produced them. While reading about music is never quite the same as hearing it, and no prose could ever emulate the same carnival-like, haunting, shiver-inducing sound that is In the Aeroplane Over the Sea, Cooper's billet doux comes pretty close. (Chord Magazine, Winter 2005/06 Chord Magazine)
In her new book 33 1/3: In the Aeroplane Over the Sea... Kim Cooper... unravels the rumors and demystifies much of the legend that has wound itself around songwriter Jeff Mangum since the Athens band's 1998 breakup... Cooper effectively reminds the reader that Neutral Milk Hotel was a band of real people-dear friends- playing instruments, but reinforces the idea that Aerpolane and its songs are a unique document of a time, place and creative community. After only six weeks, the book has gone back to press for a second printing... (Chris Hassiotis, Flagpole Magazine)
Cooper's 2005 book on NMH and Aeroplane is part of the 33 1/3 series that treats cult-classic albums like dissertation fodder, and hers does a particularly stellar job of demystifying--as much as possible--the destitute and devoted dudes behind Neutral Milk Hotel's underground stardom. Her strengths as a social historian lend this read a certain depth that most Spin writers could never muster. Somehow, she miraculously manages to do an album of this ilk--as resistant to the bitter end as it's been to the spotlight--poetic justice. (Los Angeles Alternative, February 2006 Los Angeles Alternative)
There is a treasure-trove of trivia for the NMH aficionado, and a contextual introduction and passionate advertisement for the newcomer. Also, with [Cooper's] detailed account of the NMH community, Cooper gives us a sort of normative sociology of the kind of scene that can produce great art. (Ukula Magazine, Spring 2006)
Cooper delves into the band's roots, setting up the relationships between all of the musicians that made up the Elephant 6 collective and banks like Apples In Stereo and the Olivia Tremor Control. With her easygoing narrative, Cooper achieves one of the hardest things to do when introducing readers to perfect strangers: she infuses each of the main players with a personality. When finishing In The Aeroplane Over The Sea the reader not only has a sense of who Jess Mangrum and friends are, but also what they were trying to accomplish with their music. Cooper explains why the album's audience and importance grow with each passing year while doing a fine job of also relating the music's immense charm and ...dare I say...magic. (Alt.Culture.Guide)
Cooper has managed to write the best music book that I've read so far... Awe alongside simple, direct speech. It's a delicate balance, that Cooper's excellent writing manages to preserve throughout the whole book...And this book doesn't only give information and wrap this exemplary album with an excellent text, it also gives me, and the rest of the prisoners of Jeff Mangum's scorched and wounded world, the excuse and the opportunity to climb on the rooftops and shout: 'For crying out loud, people, you better get to know this album now, before the aeroplane over the sea crashes exactly on that island with the place for only one record. (Guy Hajaj, Haoneg.com, 2006)
Kim Cooper's book belongs to the 33 1/3 series, a group of books in which writers pay tribute to great albums that they love. Well - I assume they love them; at any rate, Cooper loves this one. She writes of its creation, reception, and unintended consequences with the care due a worthy subject. (John Kissane, Buenogato.com)
Kim Cooper is the editrix 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. With fellow 33 1/3 scribe David Smay, she is co-editor of the anthologies Bubblegum Music is the Naked Truth and Lost in the Grooves: Scram's Capricious Guide to the Music You Missed. A third generation Angeleno, Kim offers offbeat bus tours of the city's crimes, literature and architectural gems through Esotouric, and blogs at the crime-a-day 1947project.
this book has value as a collection of details surrounding the rise and enigmatic end of the band. for fans, it is a trove of information about not just NMH but the associated E6... Read morePublished 4 months ago by xt
Not only it's the history of the album's recording but the whole history of Neutral Milk Hotel and its members from the earliest days. Read morePublished 6 months ago by Denis Romanov
If you like NMH and specifically ItAOtS, this is a very interesting read behind the songs, the making of and Jeff Mangum's parade of oddness.Published 9 months ago by Poolboy
Came very quickly. My roommate is a die hard fan and he really loved this book.Published 9 months ago by Brandi Melton
The best writing I have encountered on Jeff and NMH. It's really gets the "vibe" of the record down as well as the factual history. Read morePublished 9 months ago by Brent
exceedingly well-researched oral history of the band. great for its analysis of the album, but even better for its look into the recording process of the band and the inner... Read morePublished 18 months ago by Gregory Sater
Great read, was very useful for a school report I did on the album. Would suggest it to any fan of NMH.Published 18 months ago by jewells
Another in the brilliant 33 1/3 series, this one is about Neutral Milk Hotel's now legendary In The Aeroplane Over the Sea. Read morePublished 22 months ago by Eric San Juan