NEW RELEASES: Rockers love the Windy City. Today marks the release of Wilco's Kicking Television: Live in Chicago on CD (which scores an 8.3 on the Pitchfork), as well as U2's Vertigo 2005 - Live From Chicago on DVD (though it appears there will be a "Deluxe" version coming) and The Electrifying Conclusion DVD, which was shot at Chicago's Metro. You can vidi three GbV songs and a funny teaser at iFilm.
PEARL JAM: Eddie Vedder says the new album will be "aggressive" and will probably come out in the spring of '06.
DO YOU SPEAK BLOG? London's Observer observes that the the warped English of music blogs (and Pitchfork) is "brilliant fun and completely baffling at the same time."
THUNDERBIRDS ARE NOW! has a new demo on their MySpace page. (via YANP.)
LINDSAY LOHAN covers "I Want You To Want Me." Someone is definitiely killing music.
JOSS STONE is named young person of the year by publishers of Debrett's, a book which lists what it sees as the UK's top achievers. Among other new entries were Dame Shirley Bassey and Stereophonics lead singer Kelly Jones, as well as actors Tim Roth and Pete Postlethwaite.
THE ARCTIC MONKEYS announce that "When The Sun Goes Down" will be their next single, but not until mid-January.
BROKEN SOCIAL SCENE producer/part-time guitarist David Newfeld talks to the Stranger about reviews of the new self-titled disc in advance of the band's concert in Seattle this Saturday. You can hear or see them unpluggedy from last week's KCRW session.
METRIC: The Houston Press talks to the band's Emily Haines (another part-time BSSer) about pop, the personal and the political in an article that starts with a quote from Billy Bragg's "Waiting for the Great Leap Forwards." I think *Sixeyes can still link you to two legal downloads from the new album.
SONY COPY-PROTECTION: At Wired News, Dan Goodin is calling for a boycott of CDs containing the intrusive software: "If it was a mistake for Sony to foist a rootkit on its users -- as Sony's retreat on Friday would suggest -- then halting production of the offending CDs is only the first step in rebuilding our trust. Sony now must recall all remaining disks, make it easier for people to remove the rootkits and provide free support for anyone who still has difficulty."
ANNIE LENNOX fears she will never find love because men are intimidated by her keen intellect. Or perhaps they are put off by the whole "dressing in mens' business suits" thing. Sure, it worked for Kim Basinger in 9 1/2 Weeks, but that's Kim Basinger, who, afaik, has never sported a crimson buzzcut.
PETE DOHERTY-KATE MOSS UPDATE: Burberry has come out publicly in support of Moss, describing reports the shamed supermodel was being dropped by the fashion brand as "nonsense." PLUS: Moss can count herself lucky that alleged faux-firefighter and rape suspect Peter Braunstein only wrote about stalking her, rather than going for the full-on Basic Instinct.
WALK THE LINE: The NYC premiere of the Johnny and June Carter Cash biopic drew plenty of country music types, from Kris Kristofferson to Gretchen Wilson. But give kudos to Jessica Alba for dressing in an all-black ensemble.
MADONNA likes to use the "F" word a lot. But No Rock and Roll Fun has the last word.
NAOMI WATTS blasts movie remakes as unoriginal and tired. She's the lead in Peter Jackson's remake of King Kong, but she may be best known right now as the lead in The Ring, Gore Verbinski's remake of a Japanese film.
JESSICA SIMPSON thinks her sister is "stupid" and worries about her partying. Did Jessica see the video of Ashlee drunk in the McDonald's?
SONY PICTURES hasn't seen one of its films gross more than 100 million dollars in the US since October 2004's The Grudge. Zathura opened unimpressively last weekend, with only 14 million in sales against a 65 million budget. Sony is trying to turn things around, but when a reworking of I Dream of Jeannie, is mentioned with Jennifer Garner, Lindsay Lohan or Kate Hudson as possible leads, one question that might be asked is, "What happened to Jessica Alba?"
TIM ROBBINS: Don't quit your day job.
BROOKE BURNS: The former Baywatch beauty is in a L.A. hospital after suffering a fractured neck bone in a pool mishap last week, but is expected to recover fully.
TOM-KAT UPDATE: Oprah Winfrey tells Good Morning America that Cruise's couch-jumping was wilder than it seemed to her at the time, but that she didn't believe Cruise's declarations of love. Holmes is reportedly quitting acting forever to be a stay-at-home mom. If it weren't for the circumstances, I would be tempted to respond, "When did she start acting?" And I still managed it.
ARETHA FRANKLIN is going to NYC for the opening of Oprah's musical of The Color Purple, but there's an ulterior motive: "You can eat at a different restaurant every night in New York. There's so much ground to cover." Sadly, Aretha endangers herself by covering most of it these days.
KEIRA KNIGHTLEY didn't have any boyfriends at all when she was in school. So now she's dating a model. I don't know why other guys never figured out that the seemingly unattainable girls usually sit at home because guys think they are unattainable. But I wasn't about to explain it to them, either.
THE FRENCH HOTEL: It turns out that the nut doesn't fall far from the tree.
JUDE LAW and SIENNA MILLER are officially a couple again, appearing at a premiere for her upcoming movie, Casanova. Having life loosely imitate the movie makes for good pub, too.
PETRA NEMCOVA: Aides to former President Clinton stopped him from being photographed alone with the tsunami-surviving supermodel, lest the photo become grist for a late-night comic, a supermarket tab or a right-wing smear campaign. And if you can't recall why this would happen, check out the Petra pics at Egotastic. Y'know, just so you're up on current events.
KATE WINSLET denies rumors she is on the Skeletor diet, claiming the only weight she has lost is in magazine photographs. It would not be the first time that Winslet was put on the Photoshop diet.
BRITNEY SPEARS was reportedly dissed by Columbian singing sensation Shakira, who noted that her taste in men runs more to the son of former Columbian president Fernardon De La Rua. Me-OW!
RUSSELL CROWE helped French police catch a violent thug without using a telephone. Kudos to him.
VICTORIA BECKHAM, the former Posh Spice, has always denied she's had work done, but was forced to 'fess up in court docs. I give you the ONTD link because the woman who posted it has a great picture and comment in her signature line accompanying the item.
BRADGELINA UPDATE: I'm sure Ken King is not the only one to notice that the picture here is my "go to" option for Jolie stories, but what other pic works better for a story about Jolie using powdered bat as a voodoo charm to break up Pitt's marriage? Especially when someone named "Doctor Snake" is rendering his expert opinion? ALSO: Jolie's estranged dad, Jon Voight is dating Diana Ross.
FRENCH RIOTS: President Jacques Chirac said Monday in his first televised address to the nation since rioting erupted more than two weeks ago that the violence reflected a "profound malaise" in France. Aside from the fact that Chirac's response time here makes our FEMA look like The Flash, I have to wonder whether Jimmy Carter or MSNBC's Chris Matthews helped Jacques with the speech.
IRAQ: Operation Steel Curtain continues in Ubaydi, which earlier provided the stiffest insurgent resistance during Operation Matador. An estimated 60 insurgents were killed and another 25 have been taken prisoner. Iraqi President Talabani said that talks on withdrawing U.S.-led foreign troops from Iraq can begin as early as at the end of next year, based on his assessment of the training of local forces. Then there is Fred Hiatt's column on Iraqi Vice-President Adel Abdul Mahdi in the WaPo: "Adel Abdul Mahdi, Iraq's vice president, may seem a bit unfeeling as he assesses the ongoing violence in his country. It is very hard, he says -- but better than during Saddam Hussein's day, when, Mahdi says, each year 30,000 Iraqis were executed or assassinated by the regime or killed in the dictator's wars. It may sound unfeeling, that is, until you remember that, just days before Mahdi's visit to Washington last week, his older brother was killed in a drive-by shooting." Actually, it sounds unfeeling to ignore what Iraq was like under Saddam, but still worth reading.
HUGO CHAVEZ: The Venezuelan President, has insulted Mexican President Vicente Fox to the point where Mexico and Venezuela have recalled their ambassadors. And this is how Chavez acts when he wins an argument on trade.
YOUR MOMENT OF SITH: "In this article HowStuffWorks will look at the Death Star inside and out, examine the fascinating history behind this powerful military and political tool, discover other incarnations of the Death Star and learn about what really happens when you blow up a planet."
PHASRs: The US government has unveiled a "non-lethal" laser rifle designed to dazzle enemy personnel without causing them permanent harm. The Personnel Halting and Stimulation Response (PHASR) rifle was developed at the Air Force Research Laboratory in New Mexico; two prototypes have been delivered to military bases in Texas and Virginia for further testing.
THE UN-TERNET: Cyberlaw guru Larry Lessig looks at the possible effects if the US refuses to cede control over the Internet to the UN or the EU. The short version is that it would not be a really big deal.
TINFOIL HELMETS do not protect the brain against invasive radio signals and even amplify certain frequencies. At least, that's what The Man would have you believe...
BABY DOLPHIN was born over the weekend at Chicago's Brookfield Zoo. Dolphin births are not considered successful until the calf is at least a year old, but the newborn has exhibited several behaviors considered positive, including regularly nursing. Awwww...
CAT discovers a newborn baby girl human in a box on top of a garbage can on Chicago's West Side.
HAWK is subdued by a senior citizen after the bird flew into her apartment in Jefferson Park, IL (yep, lotsa local animal stories for me today).
SPARROW knocks over 23,000 dominoes in the Netherlands, nearly ruining a world record attempt before it was shot to death Monday. Birds suffering for flying through windows symmetry, catch it.