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Islands, New Releases, Richard Hawley, Bubblegum, a Lab and a Fawn   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Tuesday, August 29, 2006 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: kbade


ISLANDS plays a "Concert à emporter" for La Blogoteque. The band gathers o­n a Paris street corner for a downtempo version of "Don't Call Me Whitney, Bobby" and "Volcanoes." For comparison, you can stream the original "Whitney" via the Hype Machine.

NEW RELEASES: Albums from Bob Dylan Ray LaMontagne, Pete Yorn, Stereolab (a compilation), Sam Moore (from Sam & Dave), The Dirty Dozen Brass Band (a Hurricane Katrina-inspired, cameo-studded remake of Marvin Gaye's What's Going On), the Beach Boys (the 40th anniversary edition of Pet Sounds) and... Jessica Simpson are streaming in full from AOL this week. Blog buzz band Birdmonster releases its debut album (check out "Cause You Can"). The Tyde follows up Once and Twice with Three's Co., sounding like you would expect a band named The Tyde to sound (which is good). The new M Ward is still streaming from Merge Records. Audioslave has a new single. BONUS: You can download the next two Pet Sounds podcasts, covering "Wouldn't It Be Nice" and "You Still Believe In Me." DOUBLE BONUS: At Chromewaves, Frank is killing music with M Ward, Conor Oberst (Bright Eyes) & Jim James (My Morning Jacket) covering Dylan's "Girl From The North Country."

...AND A DVD: Having done the big John Hughes video blurb yesterday, I should mention that the "Everything's Duckie Edition" of Pretty In Pink is out today o­n DVD.

BEN FOLDS talks to the Sydney Morning Herald about releasing three internet-only EPs from 2003-04 as o­ne CD next month, touring with the Sydney Symphony, his next new LP and working o­n the soundtrack of the animated Over the Hedge: "I can tell you, it was no fun, but it paid really well and I think everyone can understand that."

CALEXICO frontman Joey Burns talks to London's Independent about why the band is more successful in Europe than in the States.

RICHARD HAWLEY gets a nice profile in London's Independent, showing that he has become wiser --and critically acclaimed -- as well as older. He has become a master of what Greil Marcus would call "3 a.m. music" -- striking stuff that would fit nicely in with Johnny Cash, Roy Orbison, Dusty In Memphis, and so o­n. You can see the lush, old school pop side of Hawley o­n "Cole's Corner" and a slightly more countrified side o­n "Just Like The Rain," which has some great Spanish landscapes. There are a few starker, acoustic numbers o­n the Hype Machine right now, including "I'm On Nights," which doesn't come up in the artist listings.

THE FLAMING LIPS bass player Michael Ivins takes a turn with the press describing the band's music for the Columbia Dispatch as "Walt Disney meets Led Zeppelin" and getting jazzed over the band's stage show for Canada's Gazette: "We're hoping that this is going to look fantastical and otherworldly -- literally, it being a UFO and all."

BUBBLEGUM: PopMatters has a piece suggesting that the rise of the genre in the 70s was generational and counter-counter-cultural, noting that Lester Bangs was a tireless advocate o­n behalf of the form, which ultimately influenced Punk. Plus, there's an embedded video of The Archies.

JEFF TWEEDY will not tour with Golden Smog this Fall, as he'll be with Wilco. But he is releasing a solo DVD in October. IIRC, there's some deal under which DVD buyers will be able to download the audio as MP3s, but don't hold me to that.

A BEATLES WEBCAM FOILS CRIME: A man in Dallas phoned the Merseyside police to report a robbery he saw while using a webcam to look at the legendary Cavern Club in Liverpool.

GENE SIMMONS of KISS sent a get-well video to an Israeli soldier wounded in Lebanon, calling him a hero the world should be proud of. Simmons was born Haim Witz in Haifa in 1949, emigrating to the US at the age of eight with his mother, a survivor of a Nazi concentration camp.

TOM-KAT UPDATE: People magazine reports that the Aussies have falsely accused Cruise of a sexist remark. The New York Times uses the Cruise-Paramount break-up as the launch for a piece o­n the waning of star power in Hollywood: "There is no statistical correlation between stars and success," according to S. Abraham Ravid, a professor of economics and finance at Rutgers University.

SPRINGSTEEN UPDATE: The Boss denied "unfounded and ugly rumors" of trouble with his marriage to Patty Scialfa in a posting that appeared o­n his official website. Presumably, he is referring to the blurb that ran o­n Page Six of the New York Post last week.

THE EMMYS: A nice thing about the Internet is that you don't have to actually watch the Emmys to see the wardobe malfunction, as VH1's Best Week Ever will do it for you.

ELTON JOHN wants to make a hip-hop record, which I thought he was setting up when he did that duet with Eminem at the 2001 Grammys. Bernie Taupin better start brushing up o­n the Urban Dictionary.

SAVE FERRIS: Matthew Broderick suffered a broken collar bone after falling off a horse. Sure, there's a Sarah Jessica Parker punchline there, but I'm in a good mood at the moment.

BRITNEY SPEARS' heavily-airbrushed, near-nude pregnant body will not be censored o­n Tokyo's subways. The pop tart is due to give birth o­n Halloween, which seems exactly right.

GEORGE CLOONEY played a practical joke o­n Bruce Willis by suggesting lots of middle-aged men were hitting o­n Bruce's 18-year-old daughter. As I'm childless (afaik), I can say that's not an excuse for not getting that's a pretty nasty joke. And I say that having mocked Willis over that Lindsay Lohan rumor.

MARISSA TOMEI wiggles out of a traffic ticket with her feminine celebrity wiles. And presumably did not go into a Mel Gibson-esque rant.

NO ONE WILL CALL HIM MAURICE: Christopher Nolan suggests that in the next Batman movie, Heath Ledger's Joker is going to be deadly serious. Which, imho, is a very good thing.

THE S.S. MINNOW, famous for its three-hour tour," can be yours for about 90K. That's a steal, considering that about 180K was spent fixing it up after it ran aground. No, really, it did. (Thanks, Ken!)

SADDAM HUSSEIN has been forced to watch himself portrayed as Satan's gay lover in South Park: Bigger, Longer and Uncut, according to South Park creators Trey Parker and Matt Stone.

IRAQ in the MEDIA: The AP lede: "A suicide car bombing and clashes between Shiite militia and Iraqi security forces left at least 50 people dead Monday in a brutal contradiction of the prime minister's claim that bloodshed was decreasing." The Washington Post: lede: "Gunmen and bombers claimed at least 69 lives in Iraq o­n Sunday, even as Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki repeated the assertions of Iraqi and U.S. leaders that violence was easing from a wartime high set earlier this summer." However, the L.A. Times actually checked the numbers and reports: "Last month, the Baghdad morgue received more than 1,800 bodies, a record high. This month, the morgue is o­n track to receive less than a quarter of that." Moreover, AFP managed to quote from Maj. Gen. Caldwell's press briefing: "The average daily murder rate in Baghdad province has dropped 46 percent from July to August, while vehicle borne improvised devices decreased by 50 percent last week to a total of eight which was the lowest monthly average in eight months." The AP and the WaPo certainly know how to get the figures from the Baghdad morgue. Readers of sources like the AP and the WaPo were left with the false impression that Prime Minister al-Maliki was lying or out of touch, when those are the impressions o­ne should have had of the coverage from the AP and the WaPo.

IRAQ in the MEDIA: The Turkish Press reported o­n the arrest of a militant suspected of orchestrating some of the most horrific bomb attacks in Iraq. But when I tried Google News, there was not a single story o­n the arrest -- though there are plenty of stories o­n bombings in Kirkuk, the city nearest the arrest.

MIDEAST CONFLICT in the MEDIA: Yesterday, Reuters reported: "During a visit to war-battered areas of southern Beirut o­n Monday, Annan was heckled by scores of Hizbollah supporters. He was forced to cut short the visit and was driven away." A local reports to the Counterterrorism Blog that the event was completely staged.

SAM the LABRADOR has adopted Bluebell the Fawn. Sam even handles the bottle feeding in a pic at the link.

DOGS generally do not excel at Driver's Ed.

FAKE FOWL save a tourist town from seabird-killing seals. It's like the animal version of Blazing Saddles.

SNAKES o­n a train, in a secret location, and asleep near the cage from which it escaped months ago.

SERPENTES o­n a SHIPPE, courtesy of Geoffrey Chaucer's blog. WARNING: Spoylerez!

A CIRCUS MONKEY in the Russian republic of Buryatia had his motorcycle stolen.

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Bob Dylan clips, Pet Sounds, John Hughes video tribute, and Bears   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Monday, August 28, 2006 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: kbade


HAPPY MORNINGS! Sure, most of you don't visit first thing in the morning -- especially o­n a Monday. But in my head, you do... and you need coffee.

BOB DYLAN: With Modern Times coming out tomorrow, Google Video is hosting a career-spanning collection of clips, including previously unreleased footage from the D.A. Pennebaker's Don’t Look Back. Plus, it looks like Bob will be having some good opening acts o­n tour, including Kings of Leon, the Foo Fighters (acoustic, iirc) and the Raconteurs.

THE WHITE STRIPES are o­n the back burner while Jack tours with the Raconteurs, but here's a sneak peek of how they will look o­n The Simpsons next month.

BRIAN WILSON, TOM WAITS, JERRY LEE LEWIS and FRANK BLACK are all part of an all-star panel of artists and execs judging the 2006 International Songwriting Competition, which is giving away over 150K in cash and prizes.

PET SOUNDS: The L.A. Times reviews the 40th Anniversary reissue of the classic album, specifically liking the previously unreleased BBC-TV interview of Brian Wilson by Beatles producer George Martin. Meanwhile, o­ne of my favorite music blogs, Largeheartedboy, is hosting a contest including a special edition o­n glorious colored vinyl (yellow for the original mono mix, green for the remastered stereo version); the deadline is noon today. Let's get a head start by brushing up o­n "Wouldn't It Be Nice," "Sloop John B." (a folk cover suggested by Al Jardine), "Hang o­n to Your Ego" (the original version of "I Know There's An Answer," deemed too arty by Mike Love), the transcendent "God Only Knows" and an instrumental outtake, "Trombone Dixie."

BROKEN SOCIAL SCENE: London's Guardian has a sobering look at the state of the Toronto-based musical collective and its offshoot bands. Main man Kevin Drew thinks BSS may be losing a little something: "None of us has any time any more in this band. There's lots of families and personal stuff, other bands going o­n, so Social Scene has become ... it's lost a bit of its love outside of when we're together, but when we're together it's there." You can stream the recent BSS unpluggety appearance o­n MPR's The Current from Captain's Dead.

RONNIE WOOD, o­ne of the less dead members of the Rolling Stones, opines that the political activism of Bono and Bob Geldof is pointless.

THE STOOGES, joined by bassist Mike Watt -- will begin recording a new studio album in Chicago o­n October 7th with Steve Albini behind the boards. (Thanks, Ken!)

DON'T YOU FORGET ABOUT ME: The Pure Boredom blog is killing music with a raft of MP3s from the the 80s teen comedies of John Hughes. So I took up the task of providing a video version, starting with the Simple Minds clip (the drumming o­n this song is impeccable), the Ramones playing "Blitzkrieg Bop" (from National Lampoon's Vacation), David Bowie's "Young Americans" and The Vapors o­ne-hit wonder, "Turning Japanese" and Billy Idol's "Rebel Yell" (all from Sixteen Candles, which opens to a clip of veteran WLS DJs Larry Lujack and Tommy Edwards), Van Halen's cover of "(Oh) Pretty Woman" and General Public's "Tenderness" (both from Weird Science), the Psychedelic Furs re-recorded title track from Pretty In Pink, which also featured Jon Cryer lip-synching to Otis Redding's "Try A Little Tenderness" (that last clip is a blistering live take from the 1967 Stax tour -- and excellent, btw), The Smiths' "Please, Please, Please Let Me Get What I Want" (a Hughes perennial), and OMD's "If You Leave," plus two Pure Boredom missed from Ferris Bueller's Day Off, "Twist and Shout" (which was shot o­n Dearborn and Randolph Streets in Chicago, with International Polka Queen Vlasta atop the float), and Yello's unforgettable-no-matter-how-you-try "Oh, Yeah." Pure Boredom didn't get to Some Kind of Wonderful, but I found Flesh for Lulu's "I Go Crazy" Sadly, the great cover of "I Can't Help Falling In Love" by Lick the Tins does not have video, but I think John Hughes probably likes UB40's cover, too.

NO GIRLS ALLOWED? An article in the Washington Post wonders why there is "a stunning gender-related imbalance" regarding female rock guitarists. Given the generally PC outlook of the WaPo, I'm surprised that there's little discussion of the often sexist nature of the genre, as well as the general sexism of the Blues and Country music that spawned it. SEMI-RELATED: Suede's Bernard Butler talks to the Guardian about the resurgence of the guitar.

THE LEMONHEADS: Sadly, Frank at Chromewaves may be right in writing that "you can tell a person's age by how excited they are about the return of The Lemonheads." He has most of the links I posted last week, but will also hook you up with another new track from the album due next month, with J Mascis providing the guitar solo.

PROJECT MERSH: London's Independent discovers what indie musicians (and a lot of non-indies, too) have long known -- their money really comes from touring and merchandising.

KILLING MUSIC: Two men pleaded guilty to violating copyright laws by posting an album by Ryan Adams o­n a Web site before its public release, federal officials said Thursday.

PETE DOHERTY-KATE MOSS UPDATE: After advocating revolution, the troubled singer hits a new low, getting busted giving cocaine to a troubled teenager at The Priory rehab center, which is currently hosting the frontmen from Keane and The Darkness also. Indeed, the celeb contingent at the Priory has generated a joke MySpace page. (Thanks, Miss Valerie!) Even so, it's rumored that the supposedly sober supermodel still wants to marry him.

TOM-KAT UPDATE: Now that his company has lost its deal with Paramount Cruise is having folks say he regrets bashing Brooke Shields. The episode has earned Cruise an Assuie award given to public figures who make derogatory and sexist public statements. More importantly, Page Six claims that Viacom CEO Sumner Redstone's decision to dump Cruise was motivated in part by Redstone's wife's reaction to the Shields incident. The decision blindsided Steven Spielberg, who directed Cruise in War of the Worlds and heads the now Paramount-owned DreamWorks. Best Week Ever has a funny faux memo from Redstone to Cruise. The Gallery of the Absurd has "The Prison Art of Katie Holmes," based o­n the editorial cartoon Lindsay Lohan's convict father sent the NYDN. And Just Jared has an unsourced report that Cruise may may a secret deal with Yahoo!

WEEKEND BOX OFFICE: Mark Wahlberg was Invincible to the tune of 17 million, followed by Talladega Nights and the indie-movie-that-could, Little Miss Sunshine, which moved into third place (making 23 million so far o­n an 8 million budget and a 10.5 million sale to Fox Searchlight). Beerfest came in fourth with 6.5 million. Outkast's Idlewild came in eighth with 5.9 million, but that's over 6K per screen -- the highest of the weekend. Snakes o­n a Plane crashed into ninth place o­n its second weekend. How To Eat Fried Worms entered at twelfth, so you hope it was low budget.

THE McCARTNEYS: Heather Mills did another nude photo shoot at the lodge o­n Sir Paul's estate. This was for PETA's "I Would Rather Go Naked Than Wear Fur" campaign, not a sleazy german sex manual.

KATE HUDSON-CHRIS ROBINSON BREAK-UPDATE: The rumor that Hudson may be seeing Owen Wilson (which he is treatening to sue over) reportedly did not go down well with the Butterscotch Stallion's then-galpal. A source told Page Six: "She's pretty upset, but everyone knows he's a dog."

MEAT LOAF swears like Samuel L. Jackson in an effort to energize the Kerrang! Awards in London. Or it could be that he's still cranky over the theft of his record collection, which he's trying to replace via eBay.

CINDY CRAWFORD admits she has been using a cosmetic surgeon for the past 11 years. And o­ne good enough that people are surprised by the disclosure.

JENNIFER LOPEZ pregnancy rumors were reignited by tween idol Jesse McCartney, who blurted out in a radio interview that J-Lo was not doing the Dallas movie because she was pregnant. J-Lo's rep vehemently denies it: "She is 100 percent not pregnant." Which, afaik, is the o­nly way to be not pregnant.

GWYNETH PALTROW'S widely-mocked "I Am African" PSA is a focus of an AP story o­n how the latest flood of stars searching for a good cause has prompted a collective groan in the press and among bloggers, as people question their methods and motives. Imho, Paltrow's ad was mocked for the same reason she was chosen to do it -- the obvious inconguity of claiming Paltrow was African, which is o­nly slightly less bizzare than seeing pictures of her surfing in England.

THE EMMYS: 24 and The Office took the top awards last night. The official site has your full list of winners and a photo gallery. There was also a tribute to -- and cameo by -- Dick Clark, who said: "Music is the soundtrack of our lives. Thank you for being a part of my life."

MAD MEL UPDATE: Rob Reiner says that Gibson must not just apologize for the anti-Semitic rant he mad during his recent DUI arrest, but also acknowledge that "his work reflects anti-Semitism." Though I agree that Gibson will have to do more, I wonder whether Reiner will ever come completely clean about the alleged misuse of public funds that spurred his resignation as head of a California commission.

JESSICA SIMPSON: It appears that MTV is working to keep the pneumatic blonde separate from ex Nick Lachey and his new gf Vanessa Minillo at the VMA Awards, to be held o­n the 31st.

BRADGELINA: Pitt may have to change the name of his production company, now that "Plan B" has been approved by the FDA as an emergency contraceptive. Meanwhile, London's Daily Mail makes the unlikey claim that Jolie and Jennifer Ansiton are burying the hatchet, and not in each other.

SURVIVOR is coming under fire from members of the New York City Council's Black, Latino and Asian Caucus for its planned racial segregation of teams for the new season. I would have thought dividing the tribes into Christians, Jews and Muslims would be more topical.

LINDSAY LOHAN gets another verbal spanking for showing up late to work, this time from Bobby co-star William H. Macy: "I think what an actor has to realize (is that) when you show up an hour late, 150 people have been scrambling to cover for you. There is not an apology big enough in the world to have to make 150 people scramble. It's nothing but disrespect. And Lindsay Lohan is not the o­nly o­ne. A lot of actors show up late as if they're God's gift to the film. It's inexcusable, and they should have their a**es kicked."

JIM CARREY and JENNY McCARTHY were spotted snapping up a host of adult items at The Pleasure Chest in West Hollywood, according to the ever-reliable National Enquirer. If true, I can't say I'm shocked. Nauseated, maybe, but not shocked.

THE CULT OF THE iPod has even assimilated Osama bin Laden, according to his former sex slave (who also revealed his obsession with Whitney Houston). In a way, I'm not surprised to discover that OBL dances his mess around the cave to the strains of "Rock Lobster." After all, Kate and Cindy do sorta ululate to make those fish sounds.

IRAQ: Hundreds of Iraqi tribal chiefs have signed a "pact of honor" in support of Prime Minister al-Maliki's national reconciliation plan. The Washington Post has a piece o­n the brutality of Moqtada al-Sadr's Mahdi Army, as well as an interesting -- though not totally persuasive -- article by a professor of demography looking at the risk of death to US troops, not unlike a piece from May o­n the risk to British troops.

IRAN: President Ahmadinejad inaugurated a new phase of a heavy water reactor, which will create a plutonium by-product that could be used to make atomic warheads, test-fired a submarine-to-surface missile during war games Sunday, stormed a Romanian oil rig to settle a commercial dispute, and the deputy speaker of Iran’s Parliaments says Tehran may develop nuclear weapons as a "preventative measure" against threats posed by the West. In reality, the UN is unlikely to impose sanctions, though there may be sanctions by a coalition of the willing.

MIDEAST CONFLICT in the MEDIA: Regarding the BBC's staged photo essay noted here earlier, the copy editor at USA Today notes that the same photo essay breathlessly identified a device as an anti-personnel mine that was actually a lithium battery. It seems like Hezbollah gets better PR coverage in the western media that it is getting in the Arabic press. At least, that would explain the apologetic tone of Sheikh Hassan Nasrallah's latest interview.

DOES A BEAR GET STUCK IN THE WOODS? No, but it may get stuck in the suburbs, where a whole family may climb a tree in someone's front yard. Let's go to the videos.

SNAKES o­n a MY SPACE PAGE: Animal Control confiscated a 90 pound python living in a home near Freedom Park, NC, after locals saw it o­n their neighbor’s Myspace.com page.

PUG ADOPTS HUSKY PUPS: Awww... Let's go to the video.

A MANATEE that has ventured as far north as Cape Cod seems to be doing quite well. Researchers think this may not have been his first trip to the Northeast.

A SECOND GROUP OF APES is discovered using tools, this time nutcrackers in the central African nation of Cameroon. They are just waiting for us maniacs to blow it up.

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David Byrne Goes Country, Cutout Bin, Jose Gonzalez, and the Super Grouper   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Friday, August 25, 2006 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: kbade



...with the 5-6-7-8's playing "Woo Hoo," along with "I Walk Like Jane Mansfield" and "I'm Blue" o­n TV and in a bar. It's like being at the club from Kill Bill Vol. 1 without Uma Thurman lopping your head off. BTW, "Woo Hoo" is a cover.

THE MOUNTAIN GOATS' in-store performance at Easy Street Records in Seattle was blogged by all-time Jeopardy champ Ken Jennings: "For some reason, when Darnielle’s not singing falsetto, his warm, nasal tenor reminds me a lot of Kermit the Frog. So he’ll be singing about addiction, divorce, abuse, and heartbreak, and you keep thinking he’s going to break into 'The Rainbow Connection' at any time..." (Thanks, LHB!)

LOSING THE KNACK? Bruce Gary, the band's original drummer o­n "My Sharona," has died of complications from lymphoma at 54. Gary also worked with George Harrison, Bob Dylan, Stephen Stills, Jack Bruce, Rod Stewart, Sheryl Crow, Harry Nilsson, Spencer Davis, Albert Collins, Albert King and John Lee Hooker. Earlier this month, Knack frontman Doug Fieger underwent successful brain surgery and is recovering at home. Martin Lewis, a radio host and protégé of fabled rock publicist Derek Taylor, remembers Gary at the HuffPo.

THE SHINS frontman James Mercer tells Billboard.com about the band's third album, Wincing the Night Away, now due in January: "I was just talking to some of the people at Sub Pop who were listening to the rough mixes, and they agree with me that we've stretched. We're trying some different styles."

THE POLYPHONIC SPREE is releasing a stopgap EP Sept. 5th, which will include covers of Psychedelic Furs, Nirvana, Edison Lighthouse and Tripping Daisy. You can hear a new original at the band's newly-upgraded website.

(photo courtesy of the multi-talented Kathryn Yu.)

DAVID BYRNE is going country. No, really. Stereogum has audio and video of David Byrne kickin' it with Sufjan Stevens o­n banjo.

CUTOUT BIN: More fortuitous finds from the Hype Machine, including: Rolling Stones (w/ Beatles?) - Drift Away (extremely rare); Keith Richards - Wicked as it Seems; John Lee Hooker - Crawlin' Kingsnake (with Keef); Lucinda Williams - Can't Let Go (live at KBCO); The Thirteenth Floor Elevators - You're Gonna Miss Me; Bow Wow Wow - I Want Candy (Live); Ian Dury & The Blockheads - Hit Me with Your Rhythm Stick; Adam And The Ants - Los Rancheros; The Kinks - Where Have All The Good Times Gone; Art Brut - Emily Kane; Sebadoh - Gimme Indie Rock; The Dead Milkmen - Bitchin' Camaro; Jim Reid (of the Jesus & Mary Chain) w/ Sister Vanilla - Song For A Secret; Soul Asylum - Cartoon; Tobin Sprout - It's Like Soul Man; Let's Active - Fell; Tommy Keene - Places That Are Gone; The Beach Boys - Let Him Run Wild (Alternate Take); Sweet - Ballroom Blitz; Rush - The Spirit of Radio (Live; a friend and fan of Simon and Garfunkel never caught the allusion); Journey - Just The Same Way; Diamond Nights - Destination Diamonds; and Cobra Starship - Snakes o­n a Plane (Bring It).

JOSE GONZALEZ, the acclaimed Argentine-Swedish singer-songwriter, explains why he sings in English, his third language. Many were introduced to Gonzalez through his song "Heartbeats," which is the soundtrack for the Sony Bravia ad where 170K superballs bounce the streets of San Francisco. Indeed, there's also a full-song length version of the ad and a "making of the ad" clip o­n YouTube. You can stream his recent World Cafe gig from NPR in Real or Windows format.

MEGADETH frontman Dave Mustaine is so angry with the United Nations that he is naming the band's next album United Abominations.

PETE DOHERTY-KATE MOSS UPDATE: When the supposedly sober supermodel invited the troubled singer to Bali for some sort of rumored wedding ceremony, did she know that Bali is a drug haven, where psychedelic mushrooms are considered its salads? Or is this sort of decision-making why she's reportedly seeing a therapist three times a week?

TOM-KAT UPDATE: In the wake of the Paramount/Cruise-Wagner break-up, execs at Creative Artists Agency -- Tinseltown's most powerful agency -- are threatening a boycott. CAA executive president Richard Lovett: "Paramount has no credibility right now. It is not clear who is running the studio and who is making the decisions." Insiders note that Paula Wagner -- Cruise's business partner -- is married to CAA president Rick Nicita.

NOW SHOWING: This weeks widest release is Beerfest (currently scoring 34 percent o­n the Tomatometer, 33 percent among the "cream of the crop" critics). Close behind is the Rock Star-of-the-gridiron flick Invincible (74 and 83 percent), followed by the adaptation of the kids' classic How to Eat Fried Worms (40-43 percent). Close to wide o­n 973 screens is Outkast's Prohibition-era musical Idlewild (52-71 percent). And if you have started seeing TV ads for Little Miss Sunshine (93-90 percent), that's because it's going wide o­n 1,430 screens this weekend.

MAD MEL UPDATE: Gibson is reportedly phoning showbiz execs with whom he's worked to apologize for his anti-Semitic rant the morning of his DUI arrest.

BRUCE SPRINGSTEEN'S marriage to second wife Patti Scialfa is o­n the rocks, with the two virtually living separate lives, according to the New York Post. Indeed, Page Six claims that "Part of the problem seems to be a friendship Springsteen developed with a stunning 9/11 widow The Boss is said to have met when he organized the America: A Tribute to Heroes telethon." Insert the Rising joke here.

QUINCY JONES: The 73-year-old musician-producer is dating a 15-year-old aspiring fashion designer? That would be beyond James Woods -- more like Tony Randall.

BRITNEY SPEARS' tell-all coffee table book is finally a bestseller... in 99 ¢ o­nly stores. Hubby Spenderline brags that he got "amazing-a** test scores" o­n his GED test, especially the math. How did we know it wasn't o­n the vocabulary section? Oh well, at least it's not like he's trying to make a living as a songwriter.

JESSICA ALBA suffers for her art, losing a tooth and chipping another during a love scene with Dane Cook while shooting Good Luck Chuck: "We were smashing our faces together and it just happened. It's not the slowest, most romantic of love scenes. Dane's a wild o­ne."

DENISE & HEATHER & RICHIE & CHARLIE & DAVID: Despite a recent spotting of David Spade with Carmen Electra, the latest gossip is that the comedian intends to propose to Heather Locklear o­nce her divorce from Richie Sambora is finalized: "I'm so in love, it's ridiculous. Never in my life did I think I'd be with someone so gorgeous and successful..." These of course are the foundation of any successful marriage.

BRADGELINA: Having cycled through the "Jolie has moved out rumor" and the "Pitt is reaching out to his ex" rumors this week, we prepare for the weekend by coming full circle to the "Jolie is wearing a wedding band" rumor. The couple was spotted together at the birthday party for Pitt's Ocean's 13 co-star Scott Caan, with the E! channel confirming the story that Jolie waited until her estranged father, Jon Voight, left the gallery before going inside.

AMBER VALETTA: The supermodel turned actress has entered rehab for a nonsubstance-related addiction, according to the NYDN. Though some (by which I mean "I") would love to speculate it's a sex-addiction, the reference to "work stress" and "image issues" tend to point elsewhere, don't they?

GEORGE CLOONEY thought he contracted Malaria after visiting war-torn Darfur, but it was just a little food poisoning o­n the return flight. And maybe a small case of TMI.

ELIZABETH HURLEY, the actress and former face of Estée Lauder, presented prizes to pigs at the Hatfield House Country Show in Hertfordshire, England. How's the career, Liz? Seriously, she digs the pigs; she breeds Gloucester Old Spot pigs herself. I'm sure there's a punchline in that last bit.

BLACK CHILDREN TOLD TO SIT IN THE BACK OF THE BUS by a white driver who designated the front seats for white children. The school superintendent for the Red River Elementary School in Coushatta, LA, confirmed that an investigation has been opened and that the driver is not currently driving.

"EAT AT HITLER'S" UPDATE: Reuters reports: "A restaurant in India's financial hub has agreed to change its name from "Hitler's Cross" following strong protests by the country's tiny Jewish community and pressure from Israel." "Tiny." "Pressure." You almost get the sense that Reuters doesn't approve.

IRAQ in the MEDIA: Last Friday, I had a little blurb about The New York Times cherry-picking US casualty statistics, based o­n a glance at the long-term numbers. Blogger John Wixsted actually crunched the numbers and the NYT's skew is even worse than I thought. The number of US military fatalities, US fatalities from IEDs, US wounded and Iraqi military and police casualties are all down in the first 7 months of 2006 compared to the last 7 months of 2005.

HEZBOLLAH TV: A businessman was arrested Wednesday o­n conspiracy charges of enabling the broadcasts of a Hezbollah television station to New York-area customers. Prosecutor Stephen A. Miller suggested that more charges were imminent: "The charge lurking in the background is material support for terrorism." Meanwhile it seems that Boston Muslim-American Society has been directing folks to where you can see it o­nline.

BUBBA the SUPER GROUPER, an orphan who changed his sex and was the first fish to successfully undergo chemotherapy, died suddenly at the Shedd Aquarium Tuesday. Teams were mobilized to provide emergency medical care, but efforts to save the fish were not successful. "The past twenty-four hours have been extremely difficult for our staff as Bubba was truly a member of the Shedd family," said George Parsons, director of the Fishes department at Shedd. "Bubba overcame some incredible odds over the years, and that’s what made him so special to us. His story of survival inspired so many of our guests and the public that followed him."

MY KIND OF TOWN: Chicago, which recently banned the sale of foie gras, has been getting complaints about all the geese pooping in Grant Park. So the city is now spraying 200 gallons of a digestive irritant that will give the geese diarrhea within 20 minutes. Video at the links.

A PANTING, HALF-DEAD PITBULL was rescued from a dumpster in Lancaster, PA.

MOUNTAIN LION ESCAPES FROM A HOME in El Paso County, Colorado -- let's go to the video.

POLAR BEARS reportedly have shrinking genitals. Some scientists are linking this to industrial pollution, but they should consider that the bears do spend a lot of their time in cold water.

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Lemonheads, Sadies, Covers, A Flock of Seagulls, and Pigs   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Thursday, August 24, 2006 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: kbade


THE LEMONHEADS: Evan Dando tells London's Guardian why he wants to make a comeback o­n his own terms. Meanwhile, in Boston's weekly Dig, Juliana Hatfield finally shatters the myth that she was deflowered by Dando. You can stream four new Lemonheads tracks now from the band's website. YouTube hosts Dando playing "It's A Shame About Ray" unplugged for Regis and Kathie Lee, though my favorite song from that album may be "Kitchen" (this version live at the '93 Glastonbury festival). There's also the band's cover of Suzanne Vega's "Luka." BONUS: Among my favorite Juliana Hatfield tunes is "My Sister."

THE PIXIES: Frank Black is peeved with the way the band is portrayed in loudQUIETloud, the new documentary about the Pixies's 2004 reunion tour. London's Guardian says that while the film was conceived as a celebration, it "quickly veers into train-wreck territory."

THE SADIES: Thanks to Frank at Chromewaves for rounding up interviews with bassist Sean Dean, and guitarist/singers Travis Good and Dallas Good, all talking about the two-CD set In Concert Volume o­ne, includes songs by Roger Miller, Syd Barrett, the Band, Bob Wills, the Flat Duo Jets and the old hillbilly gospel tune "Higher Power." We also discover the band, which became known backing Neko Case, is working with Ronnie Hawkins and Randy Bachman (The Guess Who, BTO) while preparing to record a new studio album with ex-Jayhawk Gary Louris. You can stream a bunch of tracks via the Hype Machine.

THE THRILL IS GONE: The CBC's Kevin Chong considers the death of the guitar solo.

COVER ME: MSNBC recently ran a list of timeless cover songs. The Village Voice has the first of two parts -- with streaming audio -- o­n innovative and subversive covers. There are a few covers performed by the Mountain Goats posted by The Rich Girls Are Weeping, including songs from Ace of Base and (yes) Thin Lizzy. Here's three more from the Hype Machine that may be none of the above, but offer up an A-B Boss Comparison: Fontella Bass singing "Rescue Me" and the cover by Aretha Franklin; the anthemic "Game of Pricks" by Guided by Voices, along with a twee version by A Sunny Day In Glasgow; and The Stooges' raucus "No Fun," as stripped down by The Black Keys.

THE FRESHMAN MINDSET: The annual list from Beloit College, intended to help academics understand what college freshmen know — and what they don’t have a clue about -- is out. Topping the list: "The Soviet Union has never existed and therefore is about as scary as the student union." But further down the list, we discover: "They are not aware that 'flock of seagulls hair' has nothing to do with birds flying into it." That's o­ne I can fix right now.

TEXAS THUNDER SOUL! Gorilla vs. Bear has the background o­n the Texas Kashmere Stage Band, which may be "the best high-school stage band in the world." He posted the band's take o­n the "Theme From Shaft," but there's even more to be found via the Hype Machine.

CULT OF THE iPod: The AP wonders how long a few remaining big-name musical acts can hold out against the lure of iTunes.

SOME PEOPLE CALL ME MAURICE: At the Advanced Theory blog (which you should visit, if o­nly to read the explanation of the "Advanced Theory"), Jason Hartley considers the epismetology of the word "pompatus," as it appears in the Steve Miller classic "The Joker."

PETE DOHERTY UPDATE: The troubled singer was rumored to have been working with ex-bandmate Carl Barat o­n a cover The Clash's "Janie Jones" to benefit Strummerville. Doherty also reportedly punched a nurse and trashed his own room in the Priory rehab clinic.

TOM-KAT UPDATE: While Paramount and Cruise-Wagner Productions debate their break-up, I have to note the thickness of the irony. Cruise is known for suing anyone questioning his heterosexuality, yet what did him in was the public display of his private life -- not just the Scientology, but also his over-the-couch displays of heterosexuality vis Ms. Holmes.

KATE HUDSON-CHRIS ROBINSON BREAK-UPDATE: Though People claims that evidence linking Hudson and Owen Wilson continues to mount, Hudson bailed o­n the London premiere of You, Me and Dupree. Wilson had to settle for getting flashed by a fan much less attractive than Hudson.

BRADGELINA: The inevitable follow-up to the "Jolie has moved out" rumor is the "Pitt is still trying to reach out to ex-wife Jennifer Aniston" rumor.

GWYNETH PALTROW, explaining why she prefers living in London to the US, seems oblivious to the fact that there's a whole country between LA and NYC, though I suspect she would have an even lower opinion of flyover country.

JESSICA SIMPSON was apparently stopped from kissing the pregnant belly of Britney Spears at the Teen Choice Awards. Speaking of which, VH1's Best Week Ever has produced a clip imagining Simpson's awkward meeting with ex-hubby Nick Lachey at the show.

THE FRENCH HOTEL and others had their SpoofCard calling card accounts terminated for obtaining unauthorized access to voice mail accounts of well-known celebrities, including Lindsay Lohan.

SURVIVOR: The new season will be racially segregated. The quest for ratings seems boundless.

GEORGE CLOONEY is dating Ellen Barkin after the two worked together o­n Ocean's 13, according to the ever-reliable Star magazine.

SATURDAY NIGHT LIVE will be giving three or four members the pink slip in the face of massive budget cuts. This is o­n top of Tina Fey and Rachel Dratch leaving to work o­n Fey's NBC comedy 30 Rock, a parody of an SNL-style show.

JESSICA ALBA takes a break from terrifying Vancouver to talk about the upcoming Good Luck Chuck: "I've been waiting since I started acting to do something like this, and people just never thought of me as a comedic actress." Apparently, her portrayal of a brilliant geneticist in Fantastic Four was unintentionally comedic.

IRAQ: ABC's World News Tonight noticed the 22-30 percent drop in attacks in Baghdad following a retooling of Coalition strategy; the video is even more dramatic. USA Today ran a piece o­n Col. Talib Abdul Razzaq, who patrols his Baghdad territory more like a tribal leader to win hearts and minds. As of Sept. 3rd, the first full Iraqi Army division will be operating without the mentoring of US advisors. And a senior US military official said there is "clear evidence" that Iran is funding, training and arming Shiite extremists to destabilize Iraq.

IRAN will soon announce an atomic breakthrough, the semi-official Mehr news agency reported. Other Iranian news sources suggest that Pres. Ahmadinejad is expected to announce Iran's "nuclear birth."

THE MIDEAST and THE MEDIA: The Zombietime website argues that storiesaccusing Israel of intentionally targeting Red Cross ambulances attempting to rescue innocent victims perpetuated a hoax and is the most serious scandal surrounding the media's coverage of the Israel-Hezbollah conflict. Kevin Sites, blogging from Lebanon, mentions that he cannot take pictures without Hezbollah's permission.

"EAT AT HITLER'S" UPDATE: The manager of the "Hitler's Cross" restaurant in Mumbai is miffed that his place is being singled out among the children’s fashion labels, liquor brands and tobacco products bearing Hitler’s name.

ARMED CLOWNS UPDATE: A clown hit another Arizona bank, this time in Phoenix. Police have no information o­n whether or not this incident is connected with previous Tucson robberies, or whether it's the work of a copyclown.

SNAKES IN A THEATER UPDATE: As I speculated yesterday, the snakes were trying to get in o­n their own.

COWS moo with a regional accent, according to British dairy farmers. Scientists don't dismiss the possibility.

A NEW SPECIES OF SEA URCHIN is discovered o­n eBay. No, really.

...AND THERE WERE PIGS ALL OVER THE HIGHWAY: Warwickshire and Northamptonshire Air Ambulance paramedics used lassoes to round up a truckload of pigs running loose o­n the M6 motorway after they escaped from a lorry involved in a road crash. "I never thought I'd be part of a pig rodeo," said pilot Neil Parkinson. Smallish pic at the link.

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New Yo La Tengo and Robyn Hitchcock, Joan Jett, and Psycho Killer Racoons   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Wednesday, August 23, 2006 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: kbade


YO LA TENGO frontman Ira Kaplan is not thrilled about the "indie" label: "I wouldn't say I'm particularly happy about it - it's kind of being ghettoised." That may be o­ne reason why the band's upcoming I Am Not Afraid of You and I Will Beat Your A** -- their 16th -- skips from genre to genre, as can be seen in the sorta-Motownish "Mr. Tough." You can also get free downloads of "Beanbag Chair" and "Pass the Hatchet, I Think I'm Goodkind," courtesy of Matador.

ROBYN HITCHCOCK and the Venus 3 (Peter Buck, Scott McCaughey and Bill Rieflin) have a album coming in October, with cameos from Soft Boys Morris Windsor and Kimberley Rew, plus more, but you can hear "Adventure Rocketship" now. It's pretty good, though I'm looking forward to a full band version of the Magnum Force-inspired "A Man's Got To Know His Limitations, Briggs."

OTHER NEW RELEASES: I regret overlooking a couple of new releases yesterday. The first is Honey From The Tombs by Amy Millan, who also plays with Broken Social Scene and Stars. It's getting generally favorable reviews via Metacritic. The other is To the Races by former Archers of Loaf and Crooked Fingers frontman Eric Bachman, which I mentioned last week and is still streaming in full from Aversion. As a bonus, check out Crooked Fingers' covers of "Under Pressure" and "When You Were Mine."

BOB DYLAN thinks that the quality of of modern recordings is "atrocious," which makes him nonchalant about illegal filesharing: "Well, why not? It ain't worth nothing anyway."

PET SOUNDS: The Brian Wilson-Beach Boys gem, which turns 40 next week, has its own blog, which has started offering podcasts, with comments from Brian, Mike Love, Al Jardine and Bruce Johnston. The first is an overview of the LP.

JOAN JETT talks to Suicide Girls about the Warped tour, the Runaways, the Replacements, leather, and more. Which is good a reason as any to link up a block from Ms. Jett, starting with live takes o­n "Cherry Bomb" with the Runaways and "Bad Reputation" from the new wave rocumentary, URGH! A Music War, to big hits like "I Love Rock N' Roll" and "I Hate Myself For Loving You" and her latest single, a cover of the Sweet's "A.C.D.C.," which features Carmen Electra. And though the homemade videos from the Warped tour have terrible audio, it looks like the kids still love rock 'n' roll.

THE ROLLING STONES: Although the re-rehabbed Ronnie Wood claims the living dead don't drink much o­n tour, he may not be above sucking down laughing gas all night.

THE LONG WINTERS: I just blurbed this poppy Americana band last week, but they're good enough to note that you can stream their brief appearance at the World Cafe via NPR.

DWIGHT YOAKUM would like you to have some of his tatsty biscuits. No, really.

PETE DOHERTY-KATE MOSS UPDATE: London's Daily Express claims that the supposedly sober supermodel was waiting to be wed in Bali when the troubled singer was grounded in the UK by his latest drug arrest.

KATE HUDSON-CHRIS ROBINSON BREAK-UPDATE: The actress and the rock star were spotted with their two-year-old son over the weekend (yeah, that's a son). Look for US Weekly to back off the rumors about Owen Wilson (lest he sue them) and go with a "Torn Between Two Lovers" theme.

OWEN and LUKE WILSON use butt doubles, but o­nly Luke was dumb enough to talk about it at length.

BRADGELINA: The rumor mill grinds o­n, with a report that Jolie has taken the kids to a luxury hotel in L.A. after a series of arguments with Pitt. More substantiated are the pics of Pitt falling off the no-smoking wagon, after vowing to quit for his new family.

MAD MEL UPDATE: Pakistan's former Intelligence Chief cites Gibson's anti-Semitic comments during an August 8th press conference aired o­n Al-Jazeera. Would that such was the reason why he's the former chief.

THE FRENCH HOTEL admits that her new album makes her cry, albit for different reasons from the rest of us. She also claims that her mother told her that giving Lewinskys gave you huge acne craters. She has since learned otherwise.

LINDSAY LOHAN: When that story about her staying in and behaving herself ran the other day, I wondered how long she would last. Now we know. Maybe that's why even puff mags like People are saying the 20-year-old looks like 59-year-old Goldie Hawn. Of course, with a convict father sending cartoons to the NYDN and offering opinions o­n all things Li-Lo, it's no wonder she wants a drink.

BRITTANY MURPHY: The Sin City barmaid has broken off her engagement to best boy grip Joe Macaluso. This is her second disengagement.

TOM-KAT UPDATE: Variety and others think it's news that Paramount is severing ties with Cruise's production company, but regular Pate visitors could have seen this coming weeks ago, maybe more.

DENISE & HEATHER & RICHIE & CHARLIE & DAVID: If Richie Sambora wants to get back with Heather Locklear, does it mean that David Spade can pick up Carmen Electra o­n the rebound from Dave Navarro? Hollywood is a crazy place, indeed.

NOT VERY GLAAD: The Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation is upset at a decline in the number of gay characters o­n broadcast TV shows. But blogger Tony Pierce notes that GLAAD overlooked Waylon Smithers, who may be the longest-running gay character o­n the tube.

JESSICA SIMPSON: Page Six reports that a Jacka**cast member has recorded a crude song about how Jacka** co-star Bam Margera "supposedly had sex with the busty blond singer -- describing a kinky form of intercourse that can't be printed in a family newspaper." Her rep denies it, natch. Meanwhile, Nick Lachey is auctioning mementos from the couple's three-year marriage o­n eBay.

HOORAY FOR HEZBOLLYWOOD: A Hezbollah-run website runs a picture of what it claims is the Israeli ship it hit with a missile last month... which turns out to be a decommissioned Aussie destroyer-escort deliberately sunk in 1998. At least the AP and Reuters didn't buy this o­ne. Also, as I recently noted the possibility that Hezbollah was using counterfeit money for rebuilding in Lebanon, you can find more background o­n counterfeiting by Iran, Syria and Hezbollah affiliates at PBS and the Counterterrorism Blog.

IRAQ: Speaking of the Counterterrorism Blog, Bill Roggio has a detailed look (with map) o­n the Battle for Baghdad. US and Iraqi forces say that over the past week they have captured "well over 100 known and suspected Al-Qaeda terrorists and terrorist associates," including o­ne linked to the Samarrah shrine bombing that triggered the current round of sectarian violence. Iraq's national security adviser says violence in Baghdad has fallen sharply since July thanks to troop reinforcements and the government's reconciliation efforts, a story I found o­n Reuters India -- it's not o­n the US feed and is almost entirely unreported here. Meanwhile, in Anbar province, where most US deaths this month have occurred, over 500 Iraqis joined the police -- marking the most successful recruiting drive in the region.

NSA EAVESDROPPING: Judicial Watch, a group of legal gadflies that have gone after the Clinton and Bush Administrations, claims that the judge who struck down the program as unconstitutional may have had a conflict of interest. FWIW, I think she would have reached the same poorly-reasoned decision, regardless. Ironically, had she recused herself from the case, the program still might have been ruled illegal, just with better reasoning.

SNAKES IN A THEATER showing Snakes o­n a Plane. Video at the link. Authorities said pranksters released the two live diamondback rattlesnakes, but we shouldn't rule out the possibility that the snakes simply wanted to see if the flick lived up to the hype.

WILLY THE TORTOISE is back home after a month o­n the lam, having escaped at the blistering speed of .005 mph.

TEST-TUBE GOATS: India's Central Institute of Goats claimed it has successfully produced the country's second test-tube goat.

IT AIN'T WAYNE MANOR: Florida's Department of Children and Families have removed two boys from their mother's custody, as the mother refused to get rabies shots for her and her children after bats invaded her apartment. In similar cases like it around the country, several youngsters ended up dead because they did not get the rabies shots.

PSYCHO KILLER RACOONS (Qu'est-ce que c'est?) are terrorizing Olympia, WA. "It's a new breed," said Tamara Keeton, who has started a raccoon watch. "They're urban raccoons, and they're not afraid." And that, my friends, is the tag line for the movie poster. (Thanks, Dad)

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