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The Pipettes, Tom Waits, New Richard Thompson, Thumbelina   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Thursday, March 22, 2007 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: kbade


THE PIPETTES have finished their tiny US tour, so until they come back when the album is released, we have a clip of "Your Kisses Are Wasted On Me," and parts of "Pull Shapes" and Rose singing "Dirty Mind" from their gigs at SxSW to tide us over.  And I'll toss in this badly-synced clip of "Kisses" just for the energy of their entrance.

TOM WAITS gets a hearty thumbs-up from Father Antonio Spadaro in the Jesuit journal Civilita Catolica -- the contents of which are approved in advance by the Vatican Secretariat of State.  Fr. Spadaro, who wrote that Waits represents "the marginalised and misunderstood," has also had kind words for Nick Cave.

RICHARD THOMPSON has a new album due May 29th.  Here's an advance download of "Dad's Gonna Kill Me," an Iraq war song RT discussed with a reporter from the AP.  (Thanks, Chromewaves!)  You can stream it via the ol' HM, as well as "Shoot Out the Lights" which, imo, is still a better war song (about the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan).

BETTY DAVIS -- once described by Carlos Santana as a fearless "Black Panther" figure (and the second wife of Miles Davis)  -- gets NPR's Shadow Classic designation for her 1973 self-titled debut -- with three tracks streaming at the link.

DEERHOOF co-founder Greg Saunier is a tough interview -- usually taciturn.  But he goes the opposite way for Prefix, giving long answers in thich the line between fact and fiction is fuzzy at best.  For example, I question whether he thought about making the new album gospel or cajun music.

THE STOOGES seem to have had a lot of fun playing "No Fun" at Stubb's during SxSW.

THE FLAMING LIPS will be teaming up with acclaimed writer and TV show creator Aaron Sorkin for the Broadway musical based on the group's 2002 album, Yoshimi Battles the Pink Robots. Here's "Part 1" via the ol' HM.

THE GOSPEL OF JOHN & YOKO:  Oleg Atbashian, a Ukrainian writer and graphic artist who grew up in the USSR, writes that the question of your favorite Beatle is often really a question of moral philosophy... and he finds Marxist Lennonism to be "absurd."  The piece struck me because I remembered cartoonist Garry Trudeau asking the 1988 presidential candidates about their favorite Beatle for similar reasons.  It's now a tradition -- I just discovered that Wesley Clark likes Journey.

WILLIE NELSON has been targeted by faux-newscaster Stephen Colbert because they now have competing flavors of ice cream.

EXPLOSIONS in the SKY played DC recently, so you can stream or download their "cathartic mini-symphonies" (and an interview) from NPR now.

PETE DOHERTY-KATE MOSS UPDATE:  The troubled singer pulled out a crack pipe during an interview with Vogue Hommes International at the bar of Claridge's hotel in London.  In the interview, Doherty also talked about the petty subway crime and prostitution he has engaged in to feed his habit.

BRADGELINA:  Jolie, fresh from apologizing for exposing her new son to the glare of paparazzi, sold pictures of Pax to People and Hello! for a reported million.  The proceeds going to charity, natch... but do they go to her charity?  PLUS: Gawker looks at Jolie's cozy relationship with People magazine.

BRITNEY SPEARS left the Promises Malibu Alcohol and Drug Rehab Treatment Facility after less than a month.  Her amanager claims the pop tart left the clinic "after successfully completing" the program.

THE McCARTNEYS:  Heather Mills, appearing on CNN's Larry King Live, accused Sir Paul's lawyer of making the divorce from the former Beatle as "difficult as possible".  Probably not the thing to say if you're doing a PR makeover.

ANNA NICOLE SMITH IS STILL DEAD, but a corporation started by Smith and handled by Howard K. Stern owes more than ,000 in back taxes and has been officially suspended by California's Franchise Tax Board from doing business.  Roger Freidman claims that celeb news shows The Insider and Entertainment Tonight are not asking Dr. Khristine Eroshevich tough questions because they have paid her for interviews.

VIVACA A. FOX has gone from Dancing with the Stars to Driving with the Alcohol.

CARMEN ELECTRA has reportedly been spending a lot of time with Joan Jett, but Electra's rep says: "They are just friends."  With benefits?

TOM-KAT UPDATE:  US Weekly takes us "Inside Katie's Prison," which include's Cruise's rep saying that he "never has encouraged anyone to adopt Scientology."  Cruise is set to star in an untitled thriller based on an attempt to assassinate Adolf Hitler at the height of World War II.

SIENNA MILLER, 25, was spotted taking driving lessons with the British School of Motoring near her home in north London.  Pics at the link.

MADONNA is reportedly moving her family from London to New York to be nearer her cancer-stricken father.

LINDSAY LOHAN will be looking slutastic on the cover of GQ's April "Love, Sex and Madness" issue, in which she texts the writer about the Yorkie and a Jack Russell she bought to encourage her to stay at home instead of clubbing.  Some lucky dog-stter stands to make a bundle.

SCARLETT JOHANSSON had people -- including the Daily Mail -- giving the Zapruder treatment to a video clip of her wearing a revealing dress. "Back... and to the left."

ADAM SANDLER went from guest to host of The Late Show when David Letterman went home sick with the stomach flu.  He warmed up by interviewing his dog, Matzoball.  Letterman's illness pre-empted a memorial tribute to Calvert DeForest, a/k/a/ Larry "Bud" Melman, who passed a week ago from a pneumonia-related heart attack at 85.  You can see DeForest set up the legendary Johnny Carson in a clip from 1994.

VIRAL VIDEO:  The creator of the popular anti-Hillary Clinton clip that remixed the famous Apple Computer "1984" ad has been discovered to be Philip de Vellis, who worked for -- but has been fired from -- a vendor that services Sen. Barack Obama's campaign.  He did not work on Obama's campaign.

GLOBAL WARMING:  Al Gore went back to Washington to tell Congress that "The planet has a fever."   Yet the most recent UN report chopped estimates of warming by 25% and sea-level rise by 50%.  Meanwhile, there are scientists questioning the very idea of a "'global temperature" as thermodynamically and mathematically impossible, and linking long-term solar and climate variability.  Given that scientists were warning of global cooling in the 1970s, the UN's shrinking estimates of global warming suggest that it's Al Gore who has the fever.  I think I have the prescription.

IRAQ:  In Baghdad, Al Qaeda pulled off only one successful suicide car bomb attack on Tuesday.  Iraqi VP al-Hashemi wants to sit down at the negotating table with the insurgencyAl-Hayat reported that negotiations are underway between "seven insurgent groups" and the government to expel al Qaeda from Iraq in exchange for better Sunni representation.  Prime Minister al-Maliki secured the release of a top aide to Moqtada al-Sadr, who had been held by US forces for more than two years.  Whether that will aid reconciliation or merely feed the alligator remains to be seen -- the Mahdi Army reportedly is breaking into splinter groups, with up to 3,000 gunmen now financed directly by Iran and no longer loyal to al-Sadr.  Iraqi police conducted a large-scale sweep targeting insurgents in central Ramadi.  In Diyala province, US forces reportedly freed over 200 hostages in Muqdadiya, many Iraqi police, according to the Iraqi Buratha News Agency.  Al Qaeda have had success destroyed 5 of 8 police stations in neighboring Duluiyah.

THUMBELINA, the world's smallest horse at just over 17 in. tall and weighing in at 57 pounds, has a big mission: to raise $1 million for children's charities this year.

SUICIDE SQUIRREL takes down the grid in Midland, TX.

SNAKE in a WAL-MART:  No, not the one in Georgia -- this one's a 3.5 foot long Western Diamondback Rattlesnake in Tuscon, AZ.  Video at the link.

SPIDERS LOVE TO SNUGGLE:  LiveScience has the details, with video links including a Spider mom stroking her children and the "spiders' psychedelic courtship dance."

ANOTHER ALLIGATOR was found roaming a trailer park in Gary, Indiana.  Reserve police officers in Gary found an alligator two months ago in Glen Park.  Pics at the link.

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Modest Mouse, Nico, Foo Fighters, Bo Diddley, Polar Bear Cub   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Wednesday, March 21, 2007 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: kbade


MODEST MOUSE frontman Issac Brock sliced his chest with a pocket knife during a March 18th gig in South Dakota.  A roadie had to take the knife away from the singer, who later fell off the stage.  Pitchfork has the links to the before-and-after video clips.

NICO, best known as the chanteuse on the first Velvet Underground album, was absurdly talented, but also a violent racist.  London's Guardian also looks at some of her lesser-known solo work.

DAYTROTTER:  I have really been remiss in not mentioning this fab music site, which is run by Sean Moeller out of the Quad Cities -- the old stomping grounds of Pate frontman Jon Pratt.  The site posts exclusive sessions and interviews with indie bands, usually twice weekly.  Though I was reminded to mention it by a short piece in Harp magazine, the site was also  wrtitten up for the Stanford Daily, and Moeller was interviewed by CMJ.  This Monday's session is from The Ponys, but other sessions currently on the front page include Erin McKeown and Of Montreal.

FOO FIGHTERS:  Heather Browne is streaming the band's big gig in London's Hyde Park from last summer, with cameos from Motorhead's Lemmy and Queen's Brian May and Roger Taylor.

BOB DYLAN is the subject of a four-day academic symposium at the University of Minnesota, starting this Saturday with a bus ride to Dylan's hometown of Hibbing.

BO DIDDLEY, whose Latin-influenced beat on songs like "Hey, Bo Diddley" and "Bo Diddley" inspired everyone from Buddy Holly to The Who to U2 to Pate ("She's So Special") gets a streaming audio feature with songs and interview at NPR.  The accompanying article notes that Bo dislikes the explicitly sexual and misogynistic lyrics of today's music.

PHIL SPECTOR:  People magazine examines the strategy (which may backfire) behind the hit producer's changing coif as his murder trial looms.

SxSW REMAINDERS:  The official site has some downloadable video, including Robyn Hitchcock, Peter & the Wolf, Castanets and Bishop Allen.  The New York Times has a streaming video feature following The Black Lips around the fest.

POPTIMIST:  At Pitchfork, Tom Ewing has an article addressing issues I've thought about while working on this site the past two years, particularly the role of music criticism now that the Internet makes the music almost intantly available.

PETE DOHERTY-KATE MOSS UPDATE:  In a rare bit of non-scandal for the couple, the troubled singer carried the supposedly sober supermodel out of a medical center last weekend.  Pics at the link.

THE McCARTNEYS:  Heather Mills did not lose a leg on Dancing with the Stars.  People magazine has your video.  The Daily Mail reports on the abusive messages posted by angry viewers (including Beatles fans) on ABC's website.  Meanwhile it looks like Sir Paul may be leaving his original label EMI for Starbucks.  No, really.

GENE SIMMONS of KISS and his longtime galpal Shannon Tweed look better getting Botoxed two weeks after getting matching face lifts.

BRADGELINA:  Newly-declared stay-at-home mom Jolie has signed on to star in Wanted, an action film based on a graphic novel... after she does The Changeling with director Clint Eastwood.

TOM-KAT UPDATE:  It looks like the Tom-Kitten is walking at less than a year old.  So maybe you do need to get rid of those Thetans you've been carrying around.

BRITNEY SPEARS, contrary to virually all prior reports, has made one of the most amazing turnarounds in celebrity rehab.  You can almost feel the breeze from that spin.

KIRSTEN DUNST is racking up the rockers, dropping Strokes drummer Fabrizio Moretti for Razorlight frontman Johnny Borell.

SCARLETT JOHANSSON denies reports last month that she and Justin Timberlake were an item -- but she loves (in a purely professional way, natch) director Woody Allen, telling Vogue magazine: "I'd sew the hems of his pants if he asked me to."  The creepy 71-year-old director calls Scar-Jo "criminally sexy."

HALLE BERRY is never getting married.  She's never getting married, you know that's not her scene.

PAM ANDERSON is never getting re-married.  Better get her a Johnny Maestro record, too.

KEANU REEVES was involved in an injury traffic collision with a paparazzo in Southern California yesterday.  Whoa!

HARRY POTTER UPDATE:  Emma Watson -- the 16-year-old who has played Hermione Granger in all five Harry Potter movies  -- has her first stalker.  Daniel Radcliffe, who plays Harry, thinks 17-years-old is a bit yound to write a biography.

KATHERINE HEIGL of Grey's Anatony is second on TV Guide's Sexiest Women on TV list.  To find out who beat her, click the link.  Oh, and the sexiest dudes are listed there also.

IRAN:  The NYT News Service reports that  Russia has informed Iran that it will withhold nuclear fuel for Iran's nearly completed Bushehr power plant unless Iran suspends its uranium enrichment as demanded by the UN Security Council, European, American, and Iranian officials said.  Russian and Iranian officials deny the report, natch. Germany and China urged rapid approval of a UN draft resolution that would impose sanctions on Iran for its nuclear program after South Africa surprised major powers by proposing a softening of the document's wording.  The U.S. is tightening financial sanctions on Iran.

IRAQ:  ITM's Mohammad Fadhil reports that the men staffing the checkpoints in Baghdad do not take their job lightly.  That may be why terrorists used children in a suicide attack last weekend, raising worries that the insurgency has adopted a new tactic to get through security checkpoints with bombs.  The adults ultimately abandoned the vehicle and detonated it with the children still inside.  Iraqi security forces -- supported by Sunni tribal forces -- killed 39 terrorists in a fierce battle in Ameriyah, southwest of the former rebel town of Fallujah and the site of a recent chlorine gas attack.  ITM's Omar Fadhil adds that US troops found and securely detonated a tanker filled with chlorine gas the terrorists were planning to use in chemical attacks on the area.  A woman working with US government forces has sent around an e-mail about four Iraqis fully expecting to die for building and programming an independent radio and television station in Diyala province.

ANIMAL RIGHTS ACTIVISTS WANTED THIS BABY POLAR BEAR KILLED after he was rejected by his mother!  Knut -- who has been snapped by celebrity photographer Annie Leibovitz for an environmental protection campaign -- was spared by the Berlin Zoo, much to the relief of distraught German schoolchildren.  More insanely cute pictures and video of Knut are posted at the Daily Mail.  There's also a clip of Knut taking a bath posted at London's Sun.

A POLICE RAID on a theater saved a lobster from certain death by bludgeoning for the sake of performance art.

PITTY PAT the MALTESE has adopted a wounded baby squirrel.  And there is awww...some video from the AP.

THE ALBINO SQUIRREL PRESERVATION SOCIETY is setting up a memorial for a little furry white friend to 31,000-ish students at the University of North Texas.

ROMANIAN CATTLE RUSTLERS put rubber boots on two cows they had stolen so police couldn't follow their hoof marks.  They didn't consider the tracking skills of the pig...

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Robyn Hitchcock, New Releases, Smithereens, The Birds   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Tuesday, March 20, 2007 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: kbade


ROBYN HITCHCOCK was joined by Peter Buck and Harvey Danger's Sean Nelson on "Flesh Number One (Beetle Dennis)" for the Yep Roc Showcase at SxSW (Thanks, Stereogum.).  SUPER BONUS:  Someone named "gordo73" has posted (sometimes incomplete) clips of Hitchcock & the Venus 3 playing "Give It to the Soft Boys," Pink Floyd's "See Emily Play" and the Magnum Force-inspired "(A Man's Gotta Know His Limitations) Briggs," among others.

JOE BOYD, who has (among other things) managed a Muddy Waters tour, booked Pink Floyd and produced acts including Fairport Convention, Richard Thompson, Nick Drake and R.E.M., had Robyn Hitchcock play a reading from his newly-released memoirs.  Boyd is interviewed at the link.

NEW RELEASES:  The Johnny Marr-enhanced Modest Mouse is among the albums streaming via AOL proper, while Ted Leo and the Pharmacists, LCD Soundsystem and others are streaming via Spinner.  Indie violinist Andrew Bird releases the seemingly more accessible Armchair Apocrypha album.  There are stateside releases of albums from two misnamed bands -- the insanely happy Swedsh collective I'm From Barcelona and the more dour French quartet Cyann & Ben.  On a local (to me) note,  The Ponys Turn the Lights Out for Matador Records.  And female duo The Pierces harmonize their way through the folk and cabaret tinged pop on 13 Tales of Love and Revenge.

PHIL SPECTOR:  Jury selection began on Monday in the murder trial of pioneering rock producer Phil Spector, who came to court in L.A. sporting a new blond, Beatles-style shag, instead of the spectacular Jewfro he wore to the preliminary hearings.  One of his attorneys, Bruce Cutler -- who successfully defended mafia chieftain John Gotti three times -- predicts an acquittal, natch, even though the jury will hear testimony of other women who said Spector has threatened them with a gun.  E! Online has a helpful trial primer.  NPR has an audio feature explaining Spector's famed "Wall of Sound" production technique.

THE SMITHEREENS played the World Cafe on Friday, so you can stream the gig from NPR now.  The band's latest album is a cover of Meet the Beatles, but they also mine their own catalog for this show, inlcuding a new singalong.

TWOFER TUESDAY:  The only thing more evil than the cast of Anchorman is the dreaded original version, which is rumored to be what broke Khalid Sheikh Mohammed in that secret CIA prison.

GENE SIMMONS might want to put the KISS makeup back on until the swelling from his face lift subsides.  Pic at the link.

LONEY, DEAR:  Emil Svanägen is increasingly called on to translate his home-recorded melodies into full-blown live performance material -- not an easy thing for someone who misses having someone to have coffee with more than having bandmates.  PopMatters has embedded audio and video in its feature.

THE GOOD, THE BAD & THE QUEEN:  Members of the British "project" talk to Pitchfork about songwriting, role-playing, war, and their collective legacies.

PENNY LANE is named after James Penny, a slave trader and investor in 11 voyages that took 500 to 600 captives at a time to the New World -- but the approach of the March 25 anniversary of the British parliamentary act that abolished the slave trade in Britain's colonies 200 years ago is not moving Liverpool's city council to change the name.

BRADGELINA:  Jolie jetted to Hanoi to get a visa for her newly-adopted son.  Reuters has video.

BRITNEY SPEARS was caught romping in the bushes of her rehab center with a mystery man, according to Britain's uber-reliable Daily Star.

TOM-KAT UPDATE:  Cruise, Holmes and the Tom-Kitten celebrated St. Patrick's Day, including a wearing of the green.  Then Cruise drug the family straight to the Celebrity Centre of Scientology where they spent the remainder of the afternoon.

JOHN TRAVOLTA and Erika Christensen were set to open Church of Scientology outreach centers in religiously conservative Plant City and downtown St. Petersburg, FL.

ANNA NICOLE SMITH IS STILL DEAD, but a bidding war has broken out over her lost diaries, in which she talks about a pregnancy scare in the early 1990s, her drug use and her love for late husband, octagenarian billionaire J Howard Marshall.  FOX News claims that Dr. Khristine Eroshevich wanted to be Smith's Dr. Feelgood; coincidentally, Dr. Eroshevich was invoking patient-doctor confidentiality on Entertainment Tonight.  And a judge who heard evidence on baby Dannilyn's DNA paternity test was busted on charges of possessing marijuana.

NATALIE PORTMAN'S supposed nude scenes in the upcoming Goya's Ghost are scary, not sexy.  At least she didn't have to shave her head for these torture scenes, though she gets groped by the clergy again.  Egotastic has video at the link.

THE FRENCH HOTEL photographed in a very, very compromising position with Gnarls Barkley's Cee-Lo?  It looks more like a bit of celebrity fauxtogrpahy.  Either way, it's crazy.

RALPH FINNES was urged to take an AIDS test after the stewardess who seduced him on a Qantas jet admitted she had previously worked as a high-class prostitute.  Ironically, the day after their liason, Finnes was scheduled for engagements in Indian villages, which included "preaching" about the dangers of AIDS and the need to engage in safe sex.

REESE & RYAN BREAK-UPDATE:  NW magazine is reigniting rumors with a claim that Ryan Phillippe spent the night at Ashlee Simpson's house over the weekend after the two met during a night out.  Ryan's publicist has denied the rumours.

CATE BLANCHETT has signed on to star in the fourth installment of the Indiana Jones adventures.

PIRATES of the CARIBBEAN:  The trailer for At World's End has been posted at Yahoo! Movies.  Mild spoilers, esp. if you have not seen the second movie.  There's a bonus clip also.

WALEED MOHAMMED BIN ATTASH confessed to planning the attack on the USS Cole that killed 17 sailors in the Gulf of Aden in Yemen in October 2000.

IRAN is threatening to retaliate in Europe for what it claims is a daring undercover operation by western intelligence services to kidnap senior officers in its Revolutionary Guard, who seem to be going missing in Iraq: "We've got the ability to capture a nice bunch of blue-eyed blond-haired officers and feed them to our fighting cocks. Iran has enough people who can reach the heart of Europe and kidnap Americans and Israelis."  Tehran also barred UN inspectors from visiting an underground bunker where it is building an industrial-scale plant to make enriched uranium.

IRAQ in the MEDIA:  To mark the fourth anniversary of the invasion, ABC News, USA Today, and the BBC joined forces to produce reports of "lost hope," based on a German poll of Iraqi public opinion.  Though a year of sectarian violence probably makes Iraqis more pessimistic, a look at page 37 of the full poll results shows the poll greatly oversampled Sunni Arabs who are, by all accounts, the most dissatisfied with post-Saddam Iraq-and unsurprisingly so, as they were the beneficiaries of Sadaam's despotic regime.  As the USA Today correctly reports that Sunni Arabs are 15%-20% of the population, you might think at least that paper would have noticed Sunni Arabs made up 35% of those polled.  Even with that huge flaw the poll shows that while 80% oppose the US troop presence, about 65% don't want the US to leave.  Moreover, most did not think Iraq was in a civil war and want a unified and democratic future.  UPDATE:  This shoddy poll was helping drag down US troop morale in Baghdad Monday night.  I do not know how some in the media sleep at night. 

IRAQ:  Al Qaeda marked the fourth anniversary of the invasion by setting off bombs in Kirkuk and Baghdad, killing 26.  Late Monday, US and Iraqi troops engaged in a major operation as part of the crackdown in the volatile Hurriyah neighborhood in northern Baghdad, state television said.  In Huseiba, a village just outside of Ramadi, the locals "cleansed" their town of armed gangs after al Qaeda tried to force a young boy to join them.  IraqSlogger relays a local report that former Prime Minister Alawi is negotiating with members of the governing United Iraqi Coalition in hopes of poaching members from the ruling coalition to bring down the Maliki government.  Slogger also reports that US Army medics established an ad hoc medical clinic in Sadr City on Saturday, trying to service the needs of locals who most often rely on members of Sadr's Mahdi Organization for healthcare.  Michael J. Totten is blogging further progress in the Kurdish north since his last visit, with plenty of pics.

A CROW has attacked three mothers at a British primary school.  It's just the beginning, you know.  BTW, my parents (probably unwisely) took me to see that movie when it was in the theaters.  I laughed through the whole flick.  Which tells you something about me.

A STOLEN CROCODILE was found sitting in a car passenger seat, while the driver recovered from a suspected epileptic fit, in Frankston, Australia.

A SUICIDE SQUIRREL blacked out 13,000 households in Tucson, AZ.  Meanwhile a North Carolina paper profiles a squirrel sympathizer.

GLOW-IN-THE-DARK BUNNIES have been produced by geneticists in France inserting a gene from a fluorescent jellyfish into a rabbit's egg.

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Cheap Trick, New Meat Puppets, Live Sonic Youth, New Leopard   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Monday, March 19, 2007 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: kbade


CHEAP TRICK:  Robin Zander and Rick Nielsen duet on "Voices" for Kids Are People Too, then answer questions from the kids, circa 1980.

SxSW REDUX:  At Chromewaves, Frank has link-laden posts from Day2, Day3, and Day 4 of the big fest.  Don't forget that NPR has archived a bunch of gigs, including sets from Robyn Hitchcock, The Stooges, Steve Earle, and The Ponys.  The Current also posted a bunch, concluding with three unplugged songs from Sweden's Mando Diao.

THE PIPETTES played a bunch at SxSW -- even 'net gossip Perez Hilton got his picture taken with them.  But they are mostly playing hard-to-get until their album comes out in the US later this year.

THE MEAT PUPPETS played a Sterogum-sponsored gig at SxSW, so the 'gum has pics and a video of "Plateau" for you watching pleasure.

SONIC YOUTH will be performing Daydream Nation in its entirety at the summer's Pitchfork Music Festival.  I will be there.  Ken King will be unable to attend but alerted me that rbally is back with Sonic Youth at the Roseland Theatre from July 2006, which you can jukebox via the ol' HM.

JIMI HENDRIX & DUSTY SPRINGFIELD:  There apparently only 49 seconds of their take on "Mockingbird" left in existence.

THEY WILL ROCK YOU: 10 New Artists for 2007, with free MP3s, courtesy of Spinner.

THE HOLD STEADY keyboardist Franz Nicolay:  "This is going to sound like the most retarded quotation ever, but rocking is harder than it looks..."  Inasmuch as my Dad has overlooked this band. I must re-link to their performance of "Stuck Between Stations" on Letterman and these live videos on the Tube.

BEFORE THE MUSIC DIES is a documentary indicting the music business for its core failing: it couldn't care less about good music, while it spends millions and millions peddling disposable crap that doesn't stand a chance of being passed from one generation to the next.

MAN MAN front man Honus Honus (a/k/a) Ryan Kattner tells the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review about the band's experimental brand of pop music:  "The only thing we actively think about is that we don't want to be 'another band.' We didn't want to be a rock band. I don't know if we are or not, but I don't think so."  The writer finds them difficult to describe, and rightly so... so you're best off watching their video for "Engrish Bwuud" and their live take on "Van Helsing's Boombox" for Dutch TV.

LINDSAY LOHAN reportedly was drinking champagne with Jude Law at NYC hotspot The Box both Friday and Saturday nights.  She also barred her felon-turned-preacher dad from a party she was deejaying.

WEEKEND BOX OFFICE:  300 dropped 56 percent, but still took the weekend with about million bucks, a hefty $9,500 per screen average and a $127 million total so far on its $60 million budget.  Wild Hogs continues to surprise by placing with $18.8 million.  This weekend's new releases, Premonition, Dead Silence, and I Think I Love My Wife rounded out the Top Five, though there was a big gap between Premonition's $18 million and the other two grossing $7.7 and $5.7 million, respectively.  Bridge to Terabithia hung in at sixth dropping only 24 percent and grossing over $74 million so far.  Ghost Rider dropped 40 percent, but has at least grossed its $110 million budget.  Zodiac made $3 million and its $29 million total looks like a dud against a $65 million budget.  Norbit and Music and Lyrics complete the Top Ten.

BRADGELINA:  Jolie has apologized for exposing her new son to the media frenzy that greeted them in Vietnam - and has vowed to focus on her growing family and be a stay-at-home mom, according to a Vietnamese newspaper.

ANNA NICOLE SMITH IS STILL DEAD, but a Bahamanian judge has ordered DNA testing in the custody suit over Smith's 6-month old daughter, Dannielynn.

SIENNA MILLER has hired two bodyguards to protect her from a transvestite stalker, according to Britain's uber-reliable Daily Star.  I guess if you're going to have a stalker, he might as well be a transvestite.

ROSE McGOWAN was recently in an auto accident that pushed her eyeglasses into her face, slicing her under the eye.  She was terrified of scarring, but found an excellent plastic surgeon.  That explains why McGowan looked so terrible at the Golden Globes, but looks so much better copping a feel from her Grindhouse co-star, Rosario Dawson.

UMA THURMAN is reportedly planning to wed on-off boyfriend Andre Balazs after ex-husband Ethan Hawke gave his blessing for the union.

KID ROCK won't be charged with assault, after prosecutors couldn't confirm the claim from a woman who visited his Detroit house last week.

GOODBYE, NORMA JEAN:  A newly-released -- but unsourced an unauthenticated -- FBI report suggests that Bobby Kennedy, Peter Lawford, Marilyn Monroe's psychiatrist, staff and publicist were aware of -- and perhaps even participants in -- a plan "to induce" Monroe's suicide.

GISELE BUNDCHEN does not look pregnant by Patriots QB Tom Brady.

ROSIE O'DONNELL defends 9/11 mastermind Khalid Sheikh Mohammed.  And she's apparently a 9/11 conspiracy theorist.

ISLAMISM in the UK:  The Three Little Pigs got a reprieve from councillors, who reversed a Yorkshire school's politically-correct decision to call them the Three Little Puppies to avoid complaints from Muslims (who, in fact didn't complain and thought the decision was silly).

AFGHANISTAN:  Taliban terrorists cut off the noses and ears of three Afghan drivers supplying US military bases.

IRAQ:  Most Iraqis believe life is better for them now than it was under Saddam Hussein, according to a new British opinion poll.  Despite the ongoing violence, only 26% preferred life under Saddam, with 49% preferring life under the current political regime of Noori al-Maliki.  The Maliki gov't is trying to stave off a challenge from more secular blocs.  Gunmen seriously wounded the mayor of Sadr City Thursday.  A statement from Moqtada al-Sadr urging his followers oppose occupying troops was read out at prayers in Sadr City on Friday, leading to street demonstrations.  A curfew was imposed all over the city of Hilla to block similar protests.  A "security plan" for Diyala Province is also underway, Iraqi sources say.  At ITM, Omar opines that Al Qaeda's exploding chlorine trucks will cause the local Sunnis to redouble their war against the terrorists.

IRAQ in the MEDIA:  How does the New York Times report dropping US casualties in Iraq?  By immediately adding that "a higher proportion of the American deaths have occurred in Baghdad."

LEOPARDS may not change their spots, but the Borneo Clouded Leopard is a new type of cat.

SUPERMARKET EGGS hatch into cute ducklings.  They sell duck eggs in the UK... who knew?  Cute pics at the link.

MORE THAN 50 REPTILES, including a freshwater crocodile, two pythons and three bearded dragons, were stolen from an Australian animal education center established to continue the work of wildlife crusader Steve Irwin.

SCOTTISH SHEEP are shrinking; scientists suspect global warming is to blame.  No, really. (Thanks, Dad.)

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St. Pats, SxSW, REM, Ditty Bops, Cutout Bin, Unicorn Update   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Friday, March 16, 2007 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: kbade



...with JOE STRUMMER and THE POGUES putting a Celtic spin on "London Calling" and "I Fought The Law" for St. Patrick's Day, 1988!  Follow that up with the Dropkick Murphys' videos for "I'm Shipping Up to Boston" (which you may have heard in Martin Scorsese's The Departed) and "The Wild Rover."  Round it out with a live take on one of my Fave Pogues songs, "Sally MacLennane."

SxSW:  Real-world commitments kept me from preparing even an imaginary trip to the music fest this year, but Frank Yang from Chromewaves has journeyed deep into the heart of Texas, with MP3 and MySpace links to the bands he's seeing -- some of of which would have been on my list as well.  Pitchfork links to downloads from their recommended bands.  NPR has streaming recommendations of Shearwater, Issac Hayes, Laura Gibson and more.  It's worth repeating that NPR is also streaming and archiving a number of gigs.  For example, The Holloways are described with references to  The Jam, The Clash, The Libertines and... Dexys Midnight Runners.  And the power-pop of the Apples In Stereo comes off more raw live.  There are still more performances to be had via The Current and WOXY.  And iFilm has a showcase of SxSW video, including stuff from Peter Bjorn & John, Beirut, and Lily Allen.

THE ARCADE FIRE:  Neon Bible claimed the No. 2 spot on the US Billboard 200 charts this week, so congrats to them.

R.E.M.:  Heather Browne is streaming a two-disc radio promo set of a 2003 gig recorded in Hollywood.

MY MORNING JACKET decided to stage a two-night prom at the legendary 40 Watt Club in Athens, GA, complete with a futuristic/retro under the sea theme.  Heather Browne has pictures, torrents and a stream of MMJ covering "Oh, What A Night" by the Dells.

A GUIDE TO PICKING NEW MUSIC, courtesy of Esquire magazine.

THE WFMU PLEDGE DRIVE is offering free sample MP3s from some of the DJ premiums, including Frank O'Toole's mix of Mystery Beach Boys Tapes, which you can stream at the link.

A DAY LATE, but never late than never.  Beware the friendly stranger with candy!

THE PHIL SPECTOR TAPES, recorded shortly before the hit producer was charged with the murder of actress Lana Clarkson, should all be posted today at London's Telegraph.

THE DITTY BOPS stopped by The Current to chat and play three songs, which you can stream from MPR now.

THE BIRD AND THE BEE, a jazzy-pop duo I mentioned here recently, have a streaming audio feature up via the World Cafe and NPR.

BRAD DELP, the late lead singer of Boston, committed suicide and the cause of death was carbon monoxide poisoning, according to the local police.  Doubly sad.

THE CUTOUT BIN:  The Firday's fortuitous finds via the ol' HM include this intro, plus: The Police - Next To You (Live); Elvis Costello - Pump It Up; White Denim - Shake Shake Shake; R.E.M. w/Patti Smith - I Wanna Be Your Dog; Ian Dury & the Blockheads - Hit Me With Your Rhythm Stick; James Brown - Funky President; Bruce Springsteen & the E Street Band - Kitty's Back; Bar-Kays - Soul Finger; Ted Leo - Keep On Pushin' (C. Mayfield); Billy Bragg - A New England; Robyn Hitchcock & the Egyptians - One Long Pair of Eyes;  Yo La Tengo - Let's Save Tony Orlando's House; Dylan Hears A Who - Green Eggs & Ham; The Animals - We Gotta Get Out of This Place;  The Mamas & The Papas - Go Where You Wanna Go; Harry Nilsson - Everybody's Talkin'; and Boston - Peace of Mind.

BRADGELINA:  Jolie has officially made off with 3-year-old Vietnamese boy Pax Thien Jolie.   His name means Peaceful Sky.  The adoption is consistent with Jolie's prior comments about balancing the number of Asian and African-born kids in her family.  The Daily Mail has exclusive pics.

NOW SHOWING:  This week's wide releases include: the Sandra Bullock thriller Premonition, which is scoring a whopping nine percent on the Tomatometer; the Chris Rock rom-com I Think I Love My Wife, which is doing marginally better at 18 percent; and this week's unscreened-for-critics horror flick, Dead Silence.  I'm guessing it will be another big weekend for 300.

BRITNEY SPEARS:  Super-reliable Star magazine reports that the pop tart's diva-size demands are causing major troubles at her Malibu-based rehab center, with an "insider" claiming: "She's been very demanding, acts like a 12-year-old and throws temper tantrums when she doesn't get what she wants!"  Her rumored new boyfriend is blabbing to TMZ about "growing very close" since their "special" relationship began.

THE McCARTNEYS:  Heather Mills has said she still loves Sir Paul despite, she claimed, the "huge powers" trying to destroy her.  Meanwhile, when not practicing for Dancing With The Stars, Mills found time to lead a vegetarian raid on a pig farm in Somerset; pics and video at the link.  And the local cops are complaining that Mills is making too many emergency calls about the paparazzi.

REGIS PHILBIN is recovering from successful heart surgery at a NYC hospital, according to WABC in New York.

SCARLETT JOHANSSON will star in the still-untitled film Woody Allen is shooting this summer in Spain. With three starring roles in his past four films, Johansson has become Allen's biggest go-to gal since Mia Farrow and Diane Keaton.  Think Soon-Yi will visit the set much?

ANNA NICOLE SMITH IS STILL DEAD, but the autopsy findings have been delayed while police meet with homicide detectives to discuss new evidence -- apparently evidence on a computer inside the hotel room where Smith died.

GWEN STEFANI of No Doubt has moved into a hotel -- because there's not enough room at her London home for her wardrobe and entourage.

SIENNA MILLER was seeemingly stood up by new bf Burke at the premiere of her new movie and, after learning that ex-bf Law has been getting cosy with Lindsay Lohan, ducked the after-party and went elsewhere to drink Dom Perignon until dawn.  Pics at the link.

TMZ -- a fave source of gossip 'round these parts -- is opening a branch in Washington, DC.

CARMEN ELECTRA takes a spill on the catwalk -- let's go to the video.  ICYDK has still photos.

GRINDHOUSE -- the upcoming "double-feature" from Quentin Tarantino and Robert Rodriguez -- contains scenes so graphic and outrageous  that it's headed for an NC-17 without big cuts, according to Page Six.  And the descriptions go so far beyond even the past work of Tarantino and Rodriguez that I suspect things were shot as bargaining chips with the MPAA... and just for the fun of it.  There's a new trailer for it at iFilm.  Popoholic has a 25-minute featurette on the project, with interviews, mild spoilers and never-before-seen footage from FX.

ISLAM in the UK:  A junior school production of the Three Little Pigs has been renamed the Three Little Puppies for fear of offending Muslims -- a politically correct move  even the Muslim Council of Britain condemned as misguided and said decisions like this were turning Muslims into 'misfits' in society.  The University of Leeds has been accused of "selling out" academic freedom of speech by scrapping a talk on links between the Nazis and Islamic anti-semitism after allegedly receiving emails from Muslims protesting about the event.  The university denies this, claiming that it was cancelled on safety grounds alone... and what would be the security threat? 

KHALID SHEIKH MOHAMMED admitted responsibility for over 30 terror operations, including the 9/11 attacks, personally beheading Wall Street Journal reporter Daniel Pearl, Richard Reid's attempted shoe bombing of an airliner over the Atlantic, the Bali, Indonesia, nightclub bombing and the 1993 World Trade Center attack.  KSM claimed that he was tortured by the CIA, but said he was not under duress at Guantanamo when he confessed.  Indeed, KSM was prone to exaggerate his role in some of these attacks and plans, though he had been linked by other evidence to Operation Bojinka (the plot to blow up 11 or 12 American airliners simultaneously over the Pacific Ocean), a possible assassination attempt on the Pope, Pearl's murder, 9/11, the 1993 WTC bombing, and so on.  The Counterterrorism Blog sorts out his role in other Indonesian terror attacks.  KSM's expertise was never replaced and his detention contributed to Al Qaeda's transition from a fear-inspiring attack force to a hate-filled voice on the Internet.

IRAN:  Six major powers agreed to impose new UN sanctions on Iran for its nuclear program, but Iranian Pres. Ahmadinejad remained defiant.

IRAQ:  The Iraqi newspaper al-Mada claims that Al-Qaeda is now facing in Falluja the same form of opposition it has been facing elsewhere in Anbar province.  Al-Hayat, otoh, suggests that Prime Minister al-Maliki's visit to Anbar is part of an effort to garner support from Sunnis and stave off the efforts of former PM Allawi to replace Maliki's Shia-led gov't with a more secular bloc.  London's Guardian has video of Sunni forces fighting Al Qaeda in Anbar province, via the UK's Channel 4.  Iraqi police may be dancing in the streets over the recent successes of the new security paln in Baghdad, but they are still a bit short on following proper procedure on occasion.  The first major car bomb in days exploded in the town of Iskandariya, killing six.  The AP covers the bloody first day for the crack Stryker battalion dispatched from Baghdad to Diyala province, which broadens the Baghdad security operation.  Maj. Gen. William Caldwell  says that the latest military intell suggests that Moqtada al-Sadr is still in Iran.

HENRY the HAMSTER got trapped in a kitchen pipe, but was sucked to safety with the help of a vacuum cleaner.

UNICORN UPDATE:  Prosecutors sheepishly admitted Thursday that a Montanan did not actually claim that a unicorn had been driving his truck when it crashed.

THE MOLEIMATOR is the scourge of burrowing creatures in Shelby, KY.   Who's the gopher's ally? His friends. The harmless squirrel and the friendly rabbit.

CUTE BABY ANIMAL BIRTH WATCH:  San Diego's Wild Animal Park has a new elephant in its herd.  Awww... some video at the link.

YOU MESS WITH THE BULL, you're gonna get the horns.  Who doesn't know this?

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