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BICYCLE ACTIVISM:  Latvian activists from a branch of the bicycle advocacy group Let’s Bike it recently created a visual reminder of the space taken by cars on a typical road. To this end, the group fabricated bamboo skeletons shaped like actual cars and mounted them on their bikes. The activists then cycled around the streets of Riga for several hours to highlight the absurdity of using a large car to move a single person. The stunt was organized as part of European Mobility Week, an ongoing campaign that explores sustainable urban mobility around Europe.

Source:  Christopher Jobson, ”Cycling Activists Build Bamboo Car Skeletons to Demonstrate Space Taken by Single Occupancy Cars,” Colossal, October 14, 2014

POZ Turns Five: Our Most Important Albums

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PropertyOfZack is now five years old. We started a week of celebration yesterday, and we’re keeping it going today with our favorite and most important releases to TeamPOZ over the past five years. Please peruse and enjoy our self indulgence!

Related Stories:
Five Years Of PropertyOfZack 
POZ Turns Five: Our Favorite Interviews

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Man Overboard - Real Talk, by Zack Zarrillo

There are three albums that sort of “changed” the website. They’re: The Upsides, Real Talk, and Keep This To Yourself.

I remember a few distinct moments surrounding Real Talk:

1) I received an email on my BlackBerry Pearl from a publicist named Chuck Daley that was working for Run For Cover at the time. In it was a copy of Man Overboard’s Real Talk. I was in Midtown Manhattan while I received it. I’m not sure why I ended up listening.

2) Once I hit play, I remember forcing myself to hit stop. I would listen on my way to Future Stars soccer camp every morning in Purchase, NY where I was a soccer counselor. I forced myself to listen less because I didn’t want to burn the album out.

3) It was the first album in several years that made me feel like the music I had uncovered from the top shelf that was ten years old finally made its way to the younger generation of bands.

So much came to fruition with PropretyOfZack and my own life when I first met Man Overboard and Transit (and Fireworks) at a show in New York City at The Studio at Webster Hall. It started everything again, one year after the site was born (at The Studio at Webster Hall).

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Mansions - Dig Up The Dead, by Jesse Richman

I’m actually kind of shocked that Zack didn’t pick this one. It’s one of his favorite albums too, and an album that we certainly bonded over in the early days of POZ. Christopher Browder had put Mansions on the map in 2009 with the release of New Best Friends, but while that album had garnered modest buzz amongst the hipsterati, much of that sentiment seemed to have been forgotten by 2012. Indeed, if it wasn’t for POZ, I don’t think I would have even known there was a new Mansions album being released.

That’s a big part of why I’m putting Dig Up The Dead here. It’s an incredible album, dark and raw-nerved, naked and honest, and it deserved whatever attention it received — and much, much more. I’m proud that we did so much as a site to champion it. If any of our coverage has made a difference in Chris’ career, then I’m satisfied that whatever time we’ve spent here was worth it.

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The Wonder Years - The Upsides, by Ashley Aron

The Upsides is a record that defines a strange, transformative period of my life with four simple words: “I’m not sad anymore.” I was finishing up high school, getting ready for college, and discovering new things about the world [and myself] every day. Some days, I feel burnt out on pop punk — fielding POZ Showcase submissions can do that to a person. But The Wonder Years remind me why I fell in love with the genre, and that right now, someone else is finding a positive mindset through their own personal Upsides. Records that put into words and sounds what you couldn’t are so important, and I’m glad The Upsides is mine.

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Transit - Listen & Forgive, by Zack Zarrillo

The tale of Transit in 2014 is muddled, and that’s sort of unfortunate. What Transit accomplished from their inception through the Listen & Forgive era, however, was truly impressive and important to so many of us. 

Stay Home to Keep This To Yourself to Something Left Behind to Promise Nothing to Listen & Forgive.

I mean, goddamn. Am I right?

Listen & Forgive felt like a “grow up” moment for the scene. Transit shifted over the course of two smaller releases in a major way that showed in a landmark album on a label that was also transitioning in a large way. It was a perfect storm, and “Long Lost Friends” is one of the best songs of the decade for this genre of music.

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Modern Baseball - You’re Gonna Miss It All, by Brittany Oblak

I don’t think it came as much of a surprise to anyone when our beloved boys in Modern Baseball released You’re Gonna Miss It All earlier this year and it was the pop-punk shot heard ‘round the world. Breaking the Billboard Top 100 is obviously an accomplishment, but even that doesn’t adequately express what this album means to this music scene and especially to POZ.

I think one of the reasons we can all say we like music so much is because it’s something we can relate to, something inside of us resonates with the messages in songs, and it feels great.  This is quite possibly the simplest and best explanation of our relationship as fans with Modern Baseball: they are the most relatable band in the world, especially for the point in life that most of us are at right now. 

They say it best themselves: “Caught between my adolescent safety net and where the world wants me to be” pretty damn accurately describes life as twenty-something. “Apartment” feels like the majority of college nights we’ve spent awkwardly shuffling in and out of people’s apartments playing half-assed drinking games and wondering if the cute boy or girl would notice us.  They perfectly capture the back-and-forth that happens in our brains constantly, the self-deprecation, the neuroses, and all the uncertainty, like trying to decide if you feel more like a king or a piece of shit without someone, and the phrase: “Whatever, forever” has turned into everyone’s motto. 

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💀Lame Jams💀

Apartment - Modern Baseball // Rhode Island - The Front Bottoms // Long Lost Friends - Transit // Never Saw It Coming - Tigers Jaw // Living Room Song - The Wonder Years // High Regard - The Story So Far // Dear You - Man Overboard // Honey Bee - Seahaven // Wolves At Night - Manchester Orchestra

Listen Here

When Transit sang "I'm nothing special really, I'm just a kid who tried too hard, and lost his heart in someone else's bed or car"

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