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Hoodoo Gurus, Twilight Singers, The Pipettes, and the Koranic Tuna Code   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Friday, May 19, 2006 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: kbade



...with the HOODOO GURUS. Longtime Pate fans probably know them -- they stopped in Ames, IA o­n their first US tour (and the city is thanked in the notes for Mars Needs Guitars) -- but some of the young'uns may have not heard this Aussie blend of Sixties power-pop, bubblegum pop, Beatle-esque harmonies, psychedelia and grungey garage rock. You can hear all of those elements in the video for "Like Wow, Wipe-Out!" You can hear the influence of disgraced glam rocker Gary Glitter in the video for "Leilani" from Stone-Age Romeos. And when Dale Stevermer and I saw the band open for the Bangles, they brought the Bangles roadies out to go-go dance o­n the risers and do the chanting when they covered Glitter's signature "Rock and Roll, Pt. II." They work the three-chord medley o­n the ballad "My Girl," which is not the Temptations number (Sylvia Hauser should check out the Greyhounds in the vid). You can stream four more wonderful tunes from a fan site o­n MySpace. Oom-gawaa!

FRIDAY TIMEWASTER: Japanese Pepsi Smash is just plain demented.

ERIC CLAPTON slags Simon Cowell, Coldplay and U2, and worries that modern bands are forgetting where rock and roll has come from. He may be right, though some will call him an old fogey for mentioning it.

STING is making an album of 16th century lute music. What would Slowhand say?

THE TWILIGHT SINGERS: I feel a twinge of guilt over missing that former Afghan Whigs frontman Greg Dulli's current band released a new album this week. Dulli talks to Pulse of the Twin Cities about owning a couple of bars in L.A. and how living in New Orleans part-time for the past eight years affected the making of Powder Burns. You can hear some of it via MySpace.

THE PIPETTES: Skatterbrain has the modern girl-group's live, semi-acoustic cover of "I Think We're Alone Now" paired with the original by Tommy James & The Shondells. Elsewhere o­n the 'net, The Rich Girls Are Weeping has a studio track, "ABC," which isn't as good as the Jackson 5 or Len Barry -- or even their own "Your Kisses Are Wasted On Me" -- but it's not bad.

DRIVE-BY TRUCKERS singer/guitarist Mike Cooley tells the Illinois Entertainer that Europeans get "the duality of the Southern thing."

THE BEATLES: Marathon Packs, in conjunction with a contest to win the entire Beatles catalog, notes that "the Beatles are probably o­nly important to a lot of younger music fans in an academic sense, i.e. as history. As in, o­ne must like the Beatles, because they're the Beatles... So, MP has a must-read two-parter o­n favorite "Beatle moments," such as "Count-Offs" (like the classic opening of "I Saw Her Standing There"), "Studio Tricks" (like George's solo from "I'm o­nly Sleeping" played forward and backward), "Ringo's Stick Work" (from "What You're Doing" and "Tomorrow Never Knows") and more, all illustrated with MP3s. And just so Ken King doesn't miss it, o­ne highlight is the opening of "Mr. Moonlight."

VISCERAL SONG MOMENTS: Speaking of which Good Hodgkins surveyed a number of music bloggers to offer up musical moments that convey a "human emotion and cause its listener to feel the same."

ARCTIC MONKEYS hammered Oasis frontman Noel Gallagher in the getting hammered department.

TOM VERLAINE: A former (and future) Television axemeister messes with the New York Post. For example, when asked how it feels when people refer to him as a guitar legend, Verlaine replies: "I feel like I have to get some almond ice cream."

KELLEY STOLTZ may still have obvious Beatles and Beach Boys influences, but he was inspired to be a musician by David Bowie. You can stream three and download two of his tunes at MySpace.

PETE DOHERTY-KATE MOSS UPDATE: The video of the troubled singer seemingly squirting a syringe filled with blood during an MTV interview has surfaced. Meanwhile, the supposedly sober supermodel is now romantically linked to MTV presenter Russell Brand, who has problems of his own.

SIR PAUL is rumored to have agreed to a £50million quickie divorce from wife Heather (who reportedly had delusions of grandeur) to avoid a bitter public squabble over cash. There's also a breakdown of Paul's £825 million fortune at the first link.

NOW SHOWING: The weekend's big story will probably be whether The Da Vinci Code, which is currently rating 16 percent Rotten o­n the Tomatometer, will be beaten by the family friendly Over the Hedge, which opens o­n about 300 more screens and is rating 60 percent Fresh. The remaining wide release, See No Evil, is this week's disposable horror movie we won't bother to advance screen for the critics.

IAN McKELLEN, promoting The Da Vinci Code o­n the Today show Thursday morning, responded to those who wanted a disclaimer at the beginning of the movie this way: "Iíve often thought the Bible should have a disclaimer at the front saying 'This is fiction.' I mean walking o­n water? I mean, it takes an act of faith." Well, yes, it does. McKellen went o­n to say he found the Bible "somewhat preachy" and called the ending "a bit of a downer."

RON HOWARD, director of The Da Vinci Code, is urging people not to see the movie right away if they suspect the movie will upset them. Which is a comment studio folk will haul out if the movie underperforms this weekend.

WILLIAM SHATNER and AVRIL ALVIGNE play father and daughter in Over the Hedge, but never met each other until they interviewed each other for Moviefone, asking questions submitted over the 'net. The two discuss doing voices for an animated movie, Lavigne's favorite song, their homeland Canada, science-fiction versus comedy, the three things they love about movies and more. Not bad at all for a promo device.

DENISE & HEATHER & RICHIE & CHARLIE & DAVID: David Spade's rebound romance with Heather Locklear has ended, according to In Touch Weekly. John Stamos talked about dating Denise Richards and nearly hooking up with Heather o­n Howard Stern's radio show.

BRITNEY SPEARS: A few days after the baby car seat flap, the pop tart almost drops Sean Preston while carrying a drink in her other hand. After the incident, Spears said, "This is why I need a gun."

JENNIFER LOPEZ: Is she pregnant? Popsugar weighs the evidence.

LINDSAY LOHAN: 37-year-old movie director Brett Ratner, o­nce rumored to be romancing 19-year-old Li-lo, admitted he would like to photograph her naked.

BRADGELINA: The paparazzi are getting restless in Namibia as the widely reported due date of May 18th passes. D'ya think Jolie fed them a fake date? I do! The couple are said to have struck a £2.6million deal with a US weekly magazine for the first pictures of the baby, with the money going to UNICEF. Pitt's family denies being angry with Jolie, though Pitt's mother remains close to his ex, Jennifer Aniston.

CHRIS TUCKER, whose o­nly major movie credits are Rush Hour and Rush Hour 2, is going to collect 25 million smackers for Rush Hour 3. Lesson -- you o­nly need to be able to do o­ne thing well to be successful.

CHER turns 60 Saturday. There is no way I will top Jossip's headline.

KEIRA KNIGHTLEY talks to Vogue about fashion (d-uh), movie costumes and using fashion to play a character o­n the red carpet.

MY WISH LIST: I was watching Goldfinger last night and it reminded me that someone could buy me Oddjob's hat when it goes up for auction next month.

IRAQ: Chris Albritton, who is blogging from Iraq, has more o­n Iran arming the insurgency. Thomas Friedman of The New York Times predicts the next few months are crucial, every few months. Amir Taheri, the former editor of Iran's largest daily newspaper, takes a look at the big picture and the future.

IRAN: Pres. Ahmadinejad is writing a letter to Pope Benedict. Anyone want to bet it will be another da'wa?

NSA SURVEILLANCE: BellSouth asked USA Today o­n Thursday to "retract the false and unsubstantiated statements" about the company that it contends were in a May 11 story about a database of domestic calling records maintained by the National Security Agency. The paper is reviewing the request.

BABY ZOO ANIMALS are featured in an AOL slideshow. Awww...

KITTY is a 400 lb. lion being kept as a pet, along with a dozen dogs and a lizard, by the Collins family in Melvin, KY. Some of the neighbors ar less than thrilled. You have imaginary banjo music playing in your head right now, don't you?

TRACKING THE KILLER GATOR: Florida Fish and Wildlife workers say they have found new evidence but that they still have not nabbed the gator responsible for killing a woman in Marion County over the weekend.

A FOUR-FOOT ANACONDA was found slithering around o­ne of Britainís biggest shopping centers.

A RACCOON survived an 11,000 volt electric shock in southeast Cyprus.

APES are able to plan ahead, researchers report in Friday's issue of the journal Science. They are just waiting for the big war.

DOGS: Pepe, a Jack Russell terrier, darted over a cliff's edge in Pacific Palisades while chasing a squirrel, landing o­n the Pacific Coast Highway. Pepe lived, but his owner had to be rescued from the face of the cliff. Zion, a Labrador retriever, retrieved a 9-year-old boy from the Roaring Fork River after the boy fell overboard from his raft.

KORANIC TUNA UPDATE: The fish with markings that resembled a Koranic text has disappeared from the Kenyan Fisheries Department in Mombasa. It's being called a theft, but maybe it's a miracle.

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Sufjan Stevens, Cat Stevens, Hard-Fi and Florida Gator Attacks   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Thursday, May 18, 2006 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: kbade


THE EIGHTEENTH DAY OF MAY is a British psych-folk band, with the psychedelia sounding a little more American and the folk sounding a little more British. It seemed like this would be a good day to feature them. You can hear "Hide and Seek," the single that came out last week, via the Hype Machine. You can also stream a couple from the band's self-titled debut album at MySpace. The band has an extended version of "Eighteen Days," recorded while o­n tour with the Minus 5 and Robyn Hitchcock, available in the band's blog, with live and studio downloads elsewhere at the official website, plus four more live cuts via KEXP's blog.

AUSTIN CITY LIMITS FEST has posted the initial lineup for 2006, including Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers, Van Morrison, Willie Nelson, the Flaming Lips, Gnarls Barkley, the Raconteurs, the Shins, Feist, Stars, Cat Power and the Memphis Rhythm Band, the New Pornographers, Son Volt, Nickel Creek, Iron & Wine, Calexico and many, many more...

KEITH RICHARDS' fall from a coconut tree may cost the Rolling Stones 15 million bucks.

SUFJAN STEVENS talks to Pitchfork about The Avalanche, copyright law, ornithology, punk band the Ex and his imaginary baby. Scott from Sterogum ended up staring at the back of Sufjan's head at a Laura Veirs concert. I can relate, as I stared at the back of Bob Mould's head when Soul Asylum opened for Husker Du o­n the Flip Your Wig tour.

TRESPASSERS WILLIAM discusses alternate sequencing of their album o­n their blog. You can stream a couple of new and old tracks via MySpace.

SEEN YOUR VIDEO: I am teasing you by telling you that the Mamas & Papas lip-synced "California Dreaming" really well o­n Hullaballoo, but not showing you the go-go dancers, who are worth the wait.

THE PRETENDERS: Chrissie Hynde's high school nickname was Bernice.


THE 50 WORST ARTISTS IN MUSIC HISTORY according to Blender magazine, which seems to believe music history started in the mid-to-late 1960s.

THE KINKS: Now that my ex-college roomie Dale is a Pate site member, I must post the demo of "I Go To Sleep" I found o­n the Hype Machine.

HARD-FI: The Clash-influenced DIY rockers are profiled in London's Guardian, with frontman Richard Archer wanting the band to be the biggest in the world without forgetting where they came from. And railing against the rumor that he dated Scarlett Johansson. You can sample the band via MySpace.

SIR PAUL and HEATHER MILLS are splitsville after four years of marriage and blame the media for it. Paul didn't want a prenup, so if their split reaches court, it could be the biggest divorce case in British history. I would settle for a dollar per allusion to "We Can Work It Out" and "She's Leaving Home" I read today.

ISSAC HAYES and wife Adjowa announced the birth of their baby son. He was born o­n April 10th, but with Issac being a Scientologist, the actual birth was probably quiet.

THE ARTIST FORMERLY KNOWN AS CAT STEVENS, a/k/a Yusuf Islam, is returning with a new album that he hopes will bridge the divide between Islam and the west. He has his work cut out for him. He expressed horror over the 9/11 attacks, but that followed his support for the fatwa against Salman Rushdie, his stated belief that Taliban-style extremism was a product of the media and Hollywood, his calling Judaism a "so-called religion" when he was the guest of honor at a fundraiser for a group identified by the Canadian government as a "front" for the Palestinian terrorist group Hamas, his support for Saddam Hussein, as well as his possibly funding blind sheik Omar Abdel-Rahman, who was convicted for the 1993 World Trade Center bombing, and Hamas.

LINDSAY LOHAN throws a tantrum when That 70s Show cast member (and Scientologist) Danny Masterson refused to admit her to his weekly jazz night at an L.A. club because he doesn't respect the way she lives her life. At least she can find consolation in her perfect breasts.

THE FRENCH HOTEL and oil heir (and Mischa Barton ex-bf) Brandon Davis hate Lindsay Lohan. TMZ has the video of Davis unleashing a filthy torrent as Hilton laughs with approval. At o­ne point, Davis hurls a racial invective toward Lohan's ex-bf Wilmer Valderrama, asking, "Is he in a mariachi band?"

MISCHA BARTON, the OC hottie, has a hard time hailing a taxi in NYC. Taxi drivers have a hard time spotting the nearly two-dimensional.

TOM-KAT UPDATE: Friends say that Holmes has been "constantly in tears" since the birth of the Tom-Kitten, sparking fears she has post-partum depression. Her fiancťe Cruise, of course, publicly criticized Brooke Shields for taking anti-depressants for post-partum depression, as psychiatric drugs are frowned o­n by Scientology. But what does Scientology say about karma?

BRITNEY SPEARS and Spenderline have fallen far enough that they are dissed with impunity by seventies supermodel Janice Dickinson: "I never found him hot at all. But sheís a hick anyway. She needs to get hot again. Stop clomping around in those Malibu flip-flops."

JESSICA SIMPSON: The pneumatic blonde is miffed that her sister is stealing her look.

THE DA VINCI CODE: Although I will post "Now Showing" o­n Friday, it appears that the Code drew lukewarm praise, shrugs of indifference, some jeering laughter and a few derisive jabs at the Cannes Film Festival. The New York Times, Variety and The Hollywood Reporter are among those panning the flick. The National Organization for Albinism and Hypopigmentation is upset because it will be the 68th movie since 1960 to feature an evil albino.

BOTTLE ROCKET: The debut film of Wes Anderson was an expansion of this 13-minute short.

TONY SNOW: The new White House press secretary's first televised briefing is reviewed in Variety.

GREY'S ANATOMY: The ABC hit will go head-to-head with CSI next Fall. The ABC upfront -- where the network unveiled its Fall lineup for advertisers -- included a gender-bending parody of the show's famous shower dream sequence. Which was a good excuse to link to the latter again.

TX TEACHER MISCONDUCT: An English teacher at a Texas high school is accused of having a sexual relationship with a student, after asked an assistant principal if he could take a female student to the prom. A biology teacher at another Texas high school reportedly resigned after she sent a female student an inappropriate video clip by cell phone.

IRAQ: Prime Minister-designate Nouri al-Maliki told the AP that he would present the Cabinet to parliament o­n Saturday, with or without a decision o­n the critical ministries of interior and defense. Rep. John Murtha, an outspoken war critic, claims that Marines "killed innocent civilians in cold blood" after allegedly responding to a roadside bomb ambush that killed a Marine during a patrol in Haditha. The incident is still under investigation. "I do not know where Rep. Murtha is obtaining is information," said Lt. Col. Sean Gibson, a spokesman for Marine Corps Forces Central Command. So much for "innocent until proven guilty" or even charged. But if these soldiers did commit atrocities, Murtha doesn't blame them; he blames the Bush Administration.

IRAN is shelling Kurdish villages in Iraq. And executing a 17-year-old-girl for killing an attempted rapist (had she been raped, she could hav received 100 lashes for having extra-marital sex). And Pres. Ahmadinejad rejecting the offer of a light-water nuclear reactor: "Do you think you are dealing with a 4-year-old child to whom you can give some walnuts and chocolates and get gold from him?"

CARTOON JIHAD: Harper's magazine has reprinted the Danish cartoons of the Prophet Muhammad, with commentary by leading American cartoonist Art Spiegelman, who offers what he calls a "fatwa bomb meter" to rate their offensiveness. He's wrong about why they were first printed, he's probably right in writing that the cartoons appear "banal and inoffensive" to secular eyes, revealing a gulf in understanding, and that US news outlets were not showing them out of "political correctness that smelled of hypocrisy and fear." The European Commission against Racism and Intolerance blasted the cartoons as provocative.  Meanwhile, several European secret services are o­n the lookout for special Islamist commandos allegedly trying to kill the 12 Danish cartoonists.

MAGGIE THE ELEPHANT is not much interested in using her treadmill to go for a brisk morning walk, or for that matter an afternoon or evening walk. There are days where I can sympathize with that.

HIPPOS: As a public service announcement, I advise you against trying to outrun a hippo -- they have been clocked in short running dashes at 30 mph.

MOUNTAIN LIONS: As a second public service announcement, I note that a cougar can fit through your dog door and may find your pet cat to be tasty.

FLORIDA GATOR ATTACKS: Three recent fatal attacks have caused the Statewide Nuisance Alligator Program in Okeechobee to be swamped with calls -- 225 o­n Monday alone, which is more than double the amount of calls answered last year. In Bradenton, a woman shot a gator that came into her home and attacked her dog. The local deputy gave her a warning citation for hunting without a license.

JERSEY BEARS: For the third time in less than two weeks, a black bear was caught in an urban part of the Garden State and was to be killed because of a state policy that bans the bruins from densely populated areas. Life imitates The Sopranos.

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Bono's News, New Yo La Tengo, Binge Listening and an Undercover Cat Update.   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Wednesday, May 17, 2006 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: kbade


BONO was guest editor of London's Independent yesterday. He penned an editorial about celebrity activism and Product RED. Bob Geldof wrote a piece advocating trade over aid to Africa. The Edge was interviewed about helping rebuild New orleans, starting with the music scene, followed by churches: "We rely o­n politicians too much. They don't necessarily have the skills to deal with a situation like this, or the vision. So it's down to the artists and the musicians who understand what's at stake." And Elvis Costello turned out a broader review of pop and politics.

PEARL JAM fans are worried that lead singer Eddie Vedder's girlfriend, model Jill McCormick, is becoming "the Yoko o­no of the band."

JOHNNY BOY: The London duo works a Spectorian vibe somewhere between the Ravonettes and the Pipettes o­n "You Are the Generation That Bought More Shoes and You Get What You Deserve," which made Song of the Day at NPR.

20 THINGS YOU SHOULD KNOW ABOUT BRUCE SPRINGSTEEN: For example, No. 9: Bruce intended to give "Hungry Heart" to the Ramones, but manager Jon Landau persuaded him to keep the song for himself.

GUNS 'N' ROSES: Following up o­n the band's shows at New York's Hammerstein Ballroom, Axl said: "In regards to our new record . . . hold your breath for a little longer for that.."

YO LA TENGO has a new track, "Beanbag Chair," to download or stream it via the Hype Machine. As previously suggested, it's really upbeat for YLT. BONUS: From Yo La Tengo Is Murdering the Classics, we have YLT killing o­n Iggy Pop's "Raw Power" and dying o­n Paper Lace's "The Night Chicago Died."

PERE UBU: Ken King though that Lee Hazlewood-Nancy Sinatra duet posted last Friday was pretty strange, but give me Pere Ubu playing "Birdies" from URGH! A Music War.

BRENDAN BENSON is the subject of a *Sixeyes six-pack, with Alan pointing to even more via the Hype Machine.

BINGE LISTENING: "When youíre bingeing you donít just listen. You absorb. You become saturated. The sound of the band becomes your sound; their ethos becomes your ethos. When you walk down the street, itís their music that you hear in your head, even when youíre not wearing headphones. You begin to prize certain off-key moments in their songs, idiosyncratic chord changes, or fumbled lyrics."

GANG OF FOUR: Dave Allen is blogging his various musical activities at the website for the label he founded, Pampelmoose.

WHITE RIOT: Camper Van Beethoven did a country version of the Clash classic o­n their first tour -- and they played it when I saw them in March.

PETE DOHERTY UPDATE: The troubled singer singer squirted a syringe-full of his own blood at two MTV News cameramen after injecting heroin in view of the production team. And his mum intends to write a tell-all (3rd item.)

KATE MOSS: Although retail giant Philip Green bid 108K at a charity auction for a kiss from the supposedly sober supermodel, she ended up making out with Hugh Grant's girlfriend for a full minute instead. An eyewitness said: "We thought it was going to be a kiss o­n the cheek. It lasted just over 60 seconds. A few people were shocked but everyone was laughing after."

DENISE & HEATHER & RICHIE & CHARLIE & DAVID: Sources connected with the couple tell TMZ that Richards and Sambora are "totally together" and that Richards is trying to arrange to travel overseas to be with Sambora during the tour. Also, Richards is developing a kid's clothing line o­ne month after Sheen debuted his own collection of kidswear (coincidentally, the day Richards made her bombshell allegations against Sheen).

LINDAY LOHAN and the FRENCH HOTEL reportedly got into a bar brawl at a Hollywood hotspot last Friday night.

ASHLEE SIMPSON got a nose job, according to her rep. Someone should tell Ashlee, who, at last report, didn't know.

MANDY MOORE has finally denied that Wilmer Valderrama's claim that he took her virginity.

DAVE NAVARRO:  After wrestling with his sexuality for years, the Jane's Addiction and RHCP guitarist tells a gay magazine that "I'm not gay, nor am I bisexual." NTTAWWT. The cover of the magazine, however, is very gay. NTTAWWT.

NICOLE KIDMAN and KEITH URBAN are officially engaged, as confirmed by Kidman at the 30th Anniversary gala for the organization UNIFEM.

THE MAXIM 100 LIST of the most successful women in film, TV, music, sports and fashion, mentioned here yesterday, is published in full at ONTD.

THE SEXIEST WOMAN ALIVE: Esquire magazine is running a multiple rounds of 20 questions as a teaser and inviting people to guess who it is. Round 1 is up now.

JACK BAUER and THE CREEPY BURGER KING invading MySpace. The premiere episode of 24 and the first episode of season five will be available for free to the more than 75 million registered MySpace users, while the rest of the first and fifth-season episodes will go for 1.99 per download through a MySpace page sponsored by Burger King. Actually, I don't know if the Creepy Burger King has an official role in th project, though it would be cool if they shot a promo of Jack Bauer threatening BK at gunpoint.

MADONNA was recently snapped in L.A. without her wedding ring. Her rep. says it's no big deal, natch. And it seems Madge will be crossinng a picket line to play the Forum in L.A. this weekend.

PAMELA ANDERSON marked National Orgasm Day by urging people to go vegetarian. Too. Many. Punchlines.

LOST: The season finale is tonight, so there were minor-spoiler-sprinkled stories in both Entertainment Weekly and Newsweek this week. They give away questions that will be answered, but not the answers.

CULT OF THE iPod: Audiophiles now have options for pimping their pods.

HURRICANE KATRINA: With the Hurricane season two weeks away, Gov. Kathleen Blanco said Monday that residents of metropolitan New Orleans will see few changes in the state's phased evacuation plan. Absent from Blanco's announcement were specific shelters outside southeast Louisiana, a step much anticipated by local governments who plan to use public buses to send residents without transportation to state-approved locations. Ultimately, Blanco said, the state's best opportunity to save lives during future storms rests in the hands of individuals who must take the personal responsibility to get their families away from southeast Louisiana.

IRAQ: At ITM, Mohammed writes about the quest for electricity in Baghdad as Summer approaches. Bill Roggio looks at Coalition strikes o­n "The Triangle of Death" -- the apparent staging area for attacks o­n Baghdad. Sgt. Jeremiah Workman received the Navy Cross, the Marine Corp's second-highest award, for rescuing fellow Marines while under heavy enemy fire in Fallujah. Like a lot of soldiers, he declined to tell the story himself. And every major US press outlet declined also.

IRAN: Opinion Journal looks at what the Bush administration could do, short of launching air strikes, to persuade Iran's leaders that their bid to develop nuclear weapons will exact an unacceptable price o­n their regime.

NSA SURVEILLANCE: After USA Today reported last Thursday that three phone companies had assisted the NSA in collecting "call records of tens of millions of Americans," two of those companies -- Verizon and BellSouth -- have denied it. USA Today says it's confident in its story and will look closely into the issues raised by the denials.

DALMATIAN RIDES A BICYCLE to the strains of "Dixie." In Japan.

EMOTIONAL SUPPORT DOGS: Pet owners now cite emotional support as a reason to bring pets to restaurants, spas, airplanes, offices and other public areas -- a result of the 2003 ruling by the Department of Transportation stating that animals used to aid people with emotional ailments should be given the same access and privileges as animals helping people with blindness or deafness. The full story originated in The New York Times.

ANOTHER RECORD SHARK CATCH: A Miami doctor with a slew of world fishing records added another o­ne to his collection when he caught a 385-pound lemon shark o­n fly tackle.

UNDERCOVER CAT UPDATE: Fred, the crime-fighting cat key to an undercover sting in February to get a man pretending to be a veterinarian, is in the process of being certified as a therapy cat.

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New Releases (for families), Fiery Furnaces, Final Fantasy, and Bambi   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Tuesday, May 16, 2006 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: kbade


FIERY FURNACES: The prolific Matthew Friedberger talks to Good Hodgkins about his upcoming solo album, writing long, multi-part songs and his rep for writing "difficult" music: "I donít understand 'difficult.' Popular things are either about gratification or surprise. I like, and the band likes, surprises. You know, which game do you like to playó'Again?' Or, do you like to unwrap boxes? Do you see what I mean?" You can unwrap "Benton Harbor Blues," I'm In No Mood and "Black-hearted Boy" via the Hype Machine.

NEW RELEASES: The Raconteurs, T-Bone Burnett, Doves, Dinosaur Jr. reissues and the soundtrack to Over the Hedge (Ben Folds, William Shatner, etc.) are streaming in full from AOL Music. There's also new indie psych-folk from Drag City artists Faun Fables and Espers. Plus there's British pop by way of Austin TX o­n the new Voxtrot EP.

FUN FOR THE WHOLE FAMILY: Former Del Fuego Dan Zanes has a new kids' record out, with cameos from The Blind Boys of Alabama, Natalie Merchant, Nick Cave and more... Johnny and June Carter Cash also have a children's album out today.

THE RACONTEURS are scoring a respectable 76 o­n Metacritic. Pitchfork notes that it's not all about Jack White: "Benson is an equal partner in this operation, and it's his power-pop rubric that largely dictates the sound of the album. Benson-sung songs like "Hands" and "Intimate Secretary" crackle with a Cheap Trick kind of charm, given extra heft by White's predilection for harder guitar sounds."

THE FLAMING LIPS: Wayne Coyne is encouraging aspiring musicians to move to Oklahoma City: "People should come to Oklahoma City, take advantage of how cheap it is to live here, play in a band, work at a restaurant that affords you the freedom to create your own identity -- but it also affords you the ability to fail." Just don't sound like the Flaming Lips; Wayne doesn't want a scene, man.

RICHARD HAWLEY talks to Popmatters about the politics of his songwriting: "I don't like to write songs that look at the big picture of the downtrodden masses, but that doesn't mean I don't understand. This is no time for foolish complacency. My way of thinking is to treat human beings with respect o­n a o­ne-on-one level. That's what I do in my songs. I think that itself is a political statement, even if it boils down to 'don't be an a*sehole.'"

FINAL FANTASY: Owen Pallett brought the chamber-pop to the Music Gallery in Toronto in April, including "The CN Tower Belongs to the Dead." But you might be more interested in the twofer -- Pallett and Ed from Grizzly Bear performing Mariah Carey's "Fantasy" at The Luminaire, Kilburn o­n May 10th.

LEONARD COHEN made a rare public appearance in Toronto this past weekend. The reclusive singer is said to be planning a tour this autumn and is working o­n a new album. And the press seems to be figuring out that Cohen having a nine million dollar judgment against his former manager is not the same as collecting it.

RICHARD BUTLER recently stopped by the World Cafe, so you can stream it (including a kinda eerie acoustic take o­n "Love My Way") from NPR. And he doesn't shy from talking about the Psychedelic Furs, either.

THE 40 MOST AWESOMELY BAD METAL SONGS... EVER, as counted down (with audio clips) by VH1.

MUSIC BLOGS are killing Rolling Stone for Scott Galupo... and probably many more. Galupo quotes Sean Michaels of Said the Gramophone: "It's this new intermediary between music and the audience." I've noticed this also, because it used to be said that o­ne of the big effects of the Internet would be "disintermediation," or what folks without pointy heads call "eliminating the middle man." But MP3 blogs and -- in a different way -- services like MySpace and YouTube are the new middlemen. There is now so much information instantly available that people will seek out bloggers with similar (or challenging) tastes to help sort through it. I do it, and if you visit here regularly, you do it too. BONUS: PBS's Mediashift looks at "Do-It-Yourself Ways to Find Good Music."

HOW DOES YOUR LIGHT SHINE? Most longtime Pate fans also know The Service -- they were the flagship of Pate's label (Paul Westerberg pretends to be them at the start of the Replacements' When the Sh*t Hits The Fans, too). The Service used to do a wicked version of Three Dog Night's "Shambala," so when the original popped up o­n the Hype Machine, I felt compelled to post it.

BRITNEY SPEARS is off Kabbalah because her baby is her "religion." Apparently, this is a religion practiced by bad car seat usage. The rest of the world will make do with her promise that there will be some "crazy-a*s stuff" o­n her next album. Did we expect otherwise?

NAOMI WATTS has been named as the latest UN special envoy o­n HIV/AIDS. Can adopting children from the Third World be far behind?

PRES. BUSH OVERSTEPS HIS AUTHORITY: Pres. Bush's TV address o­n immigration bumped Oprah's Legends Ball special to next Monday. How could he do this to "a spiritual leader for the new millennium, a moral voice of authority for the nation?"

REESE WITHERSPOON insists she and her actor husband are blissfully happy despite reports claiming otherwise. Such talk may be exaggerated, but if she talks publicly about having the normal marital ups and downs, she shouldn't be surprised that some will occasionally surmise that they are having a "down" period.

GENEROUS CELEBS: Forbes has top ten philanthropists list.

JESSICA SIMPSON: Futuree ex Nick Lachey is already o­n the hunt for a new wife.

CHRISTINA AGUILERA: Yesterday, I wondered whether Xtina's shift to a jazz and blues-influenced sound might turn off fans who flocked to the "Drrrty" girl. Based o­n the latest issue of GQ, it seems that Xtina has it sussed.

EVA LONGORIA: The Desperate Housewife repeats as No. 1 o­n Maxim magazine's seventh annual "Hot 100" list of the most successful women in film, TV, music, sports and fashion. I guess the 100-foot cover in the desert should have been a hint. Jessica Alba is No. 2, followed by Lindsay Lohan, Angelina Jolie, Stacy Keibler (Dancing With the Stars), Scarlett Johansson, Cameron Diaz, Kate Bosworth and Keira Knightley. To celebrate, Double Viking has photoshopped Alba and Longoria into each other's bikini pics.

DENISE & HEATHER & RICHIE & CHARLIE & DAVID: Richie Sambora, o­n tour with Bon Jovi in Germany: "Tell my female fans I am single and ready to party."

ELLE MACPHERSON is a believer in "joyous and spontaneous" sex. And, as a measure of how messed-up the self-esteem of supermodels is, says she was ashamed of her appearance when she was younger.

RIPPED FROM TODAY'S HEADLINES: Dick Wolf, creator of the Law & Order franchise, is eyeing the exploits of Tinseltown P.I.-under-investigation Anthony Pellicano as an inspiration for Power, a series he's developing about prosecutors going after corrupt Hollywood honchos.

BRADGELINA: Brad Pitt's ears will be burning o­nce Jennifer Aniston and Gwyneth Paltrow start shooting a movie together.

THE ORIGINAL STAR WARS: Little-seen footage of Luke and Biggs cut from the original Star Wars has found its way to YouTube.

CULT OF THE iPod: This week, MTV is launching Urge as the latest competitor to Apple's iTunes. The service was developed in cooperation with Microsoft, and will be heavily promoted from within the latest version of the Windows Media Player and is relying o­n a subscription-based model.

IRAQ: Bill Roggio looks at a likely strike by Task Force 145 near Ramadi and the battle of Yusifayah. The AP picked up a story from the Hartford Courant about suicidal troops being sent into combat. The story notes that 22 US troops committed suicide in Iraq last year. What the story doesn't tell you is that the national suicide average is 21.5 per 100,000 for males ages 20 to 34. As there are more than 100K troops in Iraq, you don't even need a calculator to see that the suicide rate of US troops in Iraq is below the average for similar civilians. But for some reason, that fact is not news.

NOAM CHOMSKY, generally considered to be a key intellectual figure within the left wing of the US politics, has been visiting Lebanon and getting chummy with the leaders of Hezbollah, going so far as to imply that the US is the world's leading terrorist nation. For a number of reasons, folks who actually live in Lebanon think Chomsky is clueless.

A REAL LIFE BAMBI is growing up o­n a farm after surviving an accident that killed her mother in South Carolina. Video and pics at the link. Awww...

BEARS EAT MONKEY in front of horrified visitors at a Dutch zoo. WARNING: Pic at the link. Not overly graphic, but not pleasant. BONUS: Canadian Mountie fends off a bear attack.

GATORS BLAMED FOR TWO MORE DEATHS in Florida: "As the weather heats up, the alligators' metabolism increases and they have to eat more," Florida Fish & Wildlife Conservation Commission spokesman Willie Puz said Sunday.

SNAKES... WHY DID IT HAVE TO BE SNAKES? Narcotics agents raiding a house near Shreveport, LA, were confronted by a guard snake. In Barbados, a team searches for a Burmese python suspected to be 18 feet long, as well as other snakes near Joe's River, St Joseph.

A SQUIRREL burns down a municipal building in Red Bay, Alabama.

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Jolie Holland, Mark Pickerel, The Pipettes, and the Koranic Tuna   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Monday, May 15, 2006 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: kbade


JOLIE HOLLAND is scoring an 85 o­n Metacritic for Springtime Can Kill You. Even the Independent's three-star review says "she effortlessly conjures up the moods and manners of an earlier time, her lazy, back-porch drawl sketching a folksy world of sweethearts and moonbeams, to which her instrumental armoury of harmonium, fiddle, piano, steel guitar and funereal brass band provide deft coloration." You can stream and download (at 192 kbps) old and new Jolie from MySpace.

BJORK has a seven-album DualDisc box set coming o­n June 27th.

GUNS 'N' ROSES: Axl must have something left in the tank, as Brooklyn Vegan seems to have enjoyed a 2hr., 15 min. gig at NYC's Hammerstein Ballroom... and so did a few others, if the video is any indication.

RADIOHEAD frontman Thom Yorke is releasing a solo record in July, but doesn't want you to call it a solo record.

RICHARD HAWLEY -- " a 39-year-old singer with a voice so rich and relaxed it has seen him labelled the Sinatra of the north, Roy Orbison's long-lost son and Yorkshire's Johnny Cash" -- takes London's Guardian o­n a tour of Sheffield. You can stream three live-in-studio cuts, separately or as part of an interview in Real or WMA format from KEXP.

MARK PICKEREL AND HIS PRAYING HANDS: The former Screaming Trees drummer, like former bandmate Mark Lanegan, is working the Lee Hazlewood-Nancy Sinatra vibe o­n his new album, Snake o­n the Radio. You can stream a couple of cuts via MySpace.

THE EVOLUTION OF DANCE may not be "the funniest 6 minutes you will ever see," but Judson Laipply may be the hardest working comedian in show bidness.

APPLES IN STEREO is leaving their longtime label, SpinART, and "finalizing a deal with a well-known independent label." YANP writes that the leaked demos for the new album are "sounding absolutely fantastic" Until they leak, we have to make do with "The Apples In Stereo Theme Song."

MOM ROCK: Its bands have names like HRT, Housewives o­n Prozac, the Mydols and Placenta, and their song titles run to the wackily domestic -- "Eat Your D*mn Spaghetti," "Born to Iron" or "Pick Up Your Socks." Canada's Globe and Mail looks at the genre.

THE WALKMEN have had a coupe of new tracks leak o­n the Internet, like "Brandy Alexander" and "Don't Get Me Down (Come o­n Over Here)."

THE PIPETTES: Skatterbrain ripped an acoustic set from BBC2 that sounds remarkably good, when you consider their normal girl group sound is so produced. You can stream "Dirty Mind," "Judy" and "We Are The Pipettes" via the Hype Machine.

SIR PAUL and Heather Mills are spending increasing amounts of time apart after a string of fights.

PETE DOHERTY UPDATE: The troubled singer missed a court review of his rehab, because of touring commitments in Germany, where he decided to perform in drag.

TOM-KAT UPDATE: Holmes' parents didnít get to see Princess Tom-Kitten for two and o­ne-half weeks after she was born -- o­n the day of the Mission: Impossible III premiere in L.A. And he didn't show pics of the Tom-Kitten o­n the Ellen show, but Cruise and Ellen danced, which more than makes up for it.

WEEKEND BOX OFFICE: There are probably a lot of long faces in Tinseltown today. Mission: Impossible III took the top slot with 24.5 million --a 49 percent drop would be okay had it done better last weekend. But Poseidon took second with a mere 20 million o­n a 160 million production budget. And the normally reliable Lindsay Lohan... wasn't, with Just My Luck taking fourth place o­n 5.5 million in receipts. Consider that the top ten movies o­ne year ago took in 91 million, whereas this weekend, the top ten grossed a mere 77.6 million.

DENISE & HEATHER & RICHIE & CHARLIE & DAVID: Sheen and Richards agreed Friday to extend a temporary restraining order requiring the actor to stay away from his estranged wife, so a psychologist can evaluate and make a determination regarding a custody arrangement for their two young daughters.

TERI HATCHER was stunned to find a massive swarm of 20K killer bees had moved into the sofa by the back door of her house. And o­n The Late Show with David Letterman, she implied that her recent date -- Ryan Seacrest of American Idol -- may prefer men. Even a fluffy show like Extra began a recent story story: "Is Seacrest in or out?"

AUTOGRAPHS: Autograph Collector magazine issued its 14th annual survey of Hollywood's best and worst signers. Johnny Depp and George Clooney are among the best, as are Jack Nicholson and Clint Eastwood; Cameron Diaz and Bruce Willis are among the worst.

DIANE KEATON will star as a spokesperson for L'Oreal Paris and its brands. Good for her!

BRADGELINA: Pitt and Jolie are launching a range of African homeware products. Nanny sold separately.

VAUGHNISTON: Vaughn is convinced tabloid journalists reluctantly write about him because they hate the fact he's dating Jennifer Aniston: "I think they've got to be really disappointed, o­n some level, that I'm kind of a guy that they have to put in the tabloids."

CHARLIE KAUFMAN, the screenwriter of Being John Malkovich, Adaptation and Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, has become one of the best writers of his generation, argues L.A. Times book editor David L. Ulin.

CHRISTINA AGULERA is releasing a concept album, going for a vintage feel with inspiration coming from jazz, soul, and blues from the 1920s-40s. She has the pipes, but I wonder whether this will sell as many as her last concept: buttless chaps.

THE FRENCH HOTEL may have had some work done.

KATIE COURIC: The entertainment industry opposes the so-called "Katie Couric" clause in a broad Securities and Exchange Commission proposal that would require them to tell the world how much they pay their top-earning non-executives such as actors and TV news anchors.

KIEFER SUTHERLAND: Sure, as Jack Bauer o­n 24, he will prbably save the country three more times by the end of the season. But off-screen, when he's not dropping his pants in kareoke bars, he's attacking a Christmas tree.

IRAQ: At ITM, Omar relays Arabic press reports that Iran is supplying al-Qaeda in Iraq with anti-aircraft weapons. Bill Roggio updates o­n the level of readiness of Iraqi forces, noting that logistics are a weak spot. The New York Times notes that logistics are o­ne factor hindering a US drawdown. UPI reports that the top US logistics officer in Iraq said Friday that Iraq's Army divisions will have Iraqi logistics support within a year. Finally, the Washington Post had an must-read piece o­n troops returning to the US and working o­n adjusting to life in a non-combat zone.

IRAN: UN inspectors found traces of near bomb-grade enriched uranium o­n nuclear equipment from a former research site razed by Iran in 2004 before the UN could inspect it. A diplomat in Vienna said there could be many explanations for this, but didn't mention what those might be. Buried in an AP report, we discover that A.Q. Khan sold Iran centrifuges to produce weapons-grade uranium and that the former chief of the Pakistani Army believes Iran has had enough time to develop nukes. BTW, after I linked to the Wikipedia last week to note that Pres. Ahmadinejad's letter to Pres. Bush was a da'wa that often precedes jihad, that portion of the entry has been marked as "disputed," though no concrete reason was given. So I thought it worth noting that the practice goes back to the Prophet Mohammed in 625 A.D. and that the closing of the letter -- left untranslated in the version widely available -- translates as "Peace o­nly unto those who follow the true path."

NSA SURVEILLANCE: As I suggested last week, lawyers who specialize in national security and communications, in and out of government, said it is difficult to assess the legality of the program. It may be similarly difficult to assess the snap polling done o­n the program. ABCNews and The Washington Post went first with a poll showing that Americans by nearly a 2-1 ratio call the surveillance of telephone records an acceptable way for the feds to investigate possible terrorist threats. Polls from Newsweek and USA Today showed 53 or 51 percent opposingthe program (though all of these polls have a 4 percent margin of error). Democratic pollster Mark Blumenthal says the answer is probably somewhere in between. And a factor he didn't mention was that the latter two polls were taken entirely o­n Friday and Saturday. "Weekend polling" o­n politics is volatile and generally skews in favor of Democrats. Plus, in the internals of the USA Today/Gallup poll, we find that people were asked "Do you think the Bush administration has gone too far, has been about right, or has not gone far enough in restricting peopleís civil liberties in order to fight terrorism?" Yet o­nly 41 percent answered "too far."

STONEHENGE: And where are they now, the little people of... Stonehenge? Brazil?

A HAMMERHEAD SHARK caught in Boca Grande Pass may shatter the world record at 13 feet, 4 inches and 750-pounds. They didn't need a bigger boat.

DOGS are tuning into web radio in Thailand.

RUNAWAY TORTOISE traveled 1.8 miles in 8 months away from home -- a blistering average of 39 feet a day.

AN OSTRICH SHOOTING IN KANSAS: A western Kansas sheriff is defending his decision to order a deputy to kill an ostrich that wandered o­nto Interstate 70 near Colby, despite protests from a truck driver who called the shooting "inhumane and senseless."

KORANIC TUNA: Kenyan Muslims are flocking to Mombasa by the hundreds to see a tuna that supposedly has a Koranic verse embedded in its scales.

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