Things We Love: Philip Kim's picks

Justin McIntosh, Columbus Alive

When Connections bassist Philip Kim isn't playing music, he's probably at Kafe Kerouac. "I practically work here, I'm here so much," he says, settling into a chair on the café's performance stage. He doesn't get paid, but he does book and run shows and bar-back as needed. Over the next few weeks, however, it's all about that bass. (Go ahead, groan.) On Thursday, Kim performs with his quick-hit, lo-fi indie-rock melodic assassins at Ace of Cups. On Feb. 20, he'll play with a Magnetic Fields tribute band for the now-annual (and supremely fun) "infinite exes" show at Ace of Cups.

Cucumber kimchi

Korean food in general is my soul food. It's very nostalgic. But I don't make my own; I hardly even eat Korean food, which is a shame - I am Korean. There's a lot of different types of kimchi - more than 20 probably. Cucumber kimchi is my favorite. It's like a pickle in kimchi juice. It's sweet and has the kimchi spice and tartness. I'm always craving it.


I love shitgaze because it has incredibly catchy melodies and the lyrical content's great. They're pop songs in a way, but they're deliberately recorded differently. It suggests you're more interested in the now, the present, the liveness of it. I always thought it was a very smart, progressive, good thing for music in general, and I think even now, in terms of how it holds up, it blows my mind even more. I have more personal context too, because I get to talk to Adam [Elliott of shitgaze pioneers Times New Viking (pictured)] about these things, but … I appreciate still the recordings and the noise of it.

Making boats out of bark

You gotta get a pretty flat piece [of bark] and stick a twig in it and make a sail out of a leaf. The things I put to sail on them are LEGO and bugs and things. An old friend of mine's uncle, I was hanging out with him and he was like, "Hey kids, let's go make some boats," and I didn't know what he was talking about really. He took a piece of bark and made a boat and set it on the water, and I was like, "Oh, that's awesome." One thing I really want to do is a boat launch, which would be like as many people who wanted to come and do a parade of boats, have some music.

"Bizarre Love Triangle" by New Order

I've literally listened to that song probably as many times as you can listen to a song in an eight-hour day for the past four days probably. Honestly, it's because of a girl who really loves New Order. I love New Order too, but I hadn't listened to them in a while. I put on "Bizarre Love Triangle," and just couldn't stop. But also it connected with a lot of other things. Connections are pushing more toward '80s pop and even synth-pop stuff. It made sense because the new songs we've been playing lately are in that mode. It just clicked. That song in particular just blew my mind.

Washington Beach

The Beach is like a transition zone between Campus and Clintonville proper. You get that mix. Spacebar's doing really well. I live right by a corner store, Taco Bell's right there and Jack & Benny's. The record store and Ace Hardware. Dick's Den. Legendary venues like Ace of Cups, and institutions like the Dube. There's a community garden. You can walk down Clinton-Adams in the summer and there's like seven people on porches playing music. A lot of my friends ended up in the Washington Beach area, too. I see them walking around - I can walk to their place quickly. We're all going to the same shows now since it's right there.

The Rock Potluck

Rock Potluck gets different members from local bands and forms 10 new bands with those members, and those 10 bands meet up and write two original songs together and play a cover. It's how I got into Connections. I participated in a band with Kevin Elliott, who was working with Andy Hampel … and a couple weeks later Kevin messaged me and said, "You want to play bass in this new thing we have?" I love it more as an audience member, though. The musicianship is always top-notch, so you don't have to worry too much if things will sound terrible or the band will be bad. And you get to see all these musicians and bands having a good time rather than taking it like it's just another show.

Philip Kim,

Bassist, Connections