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Richard Thompson, XTC, Eddie Hinton, the Alito shuffle and Pug Vader   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Tuesday, November 01, 2005 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: kbade


RICHARD THOMPSON has what looks to be an incredible box set coming in February. Loads of unheard and unreleased tracks, demos, outtakes, live tracks, a 168 page book, and more!

SUFJAN STEVENS and his 50 state project are profiled in London's Guardian, along with links to the paper's reviews of his earlier albums.

XTC is boxing 1999's Apple Venus, Volume o­ne and 2000's Wasp Star with two CDs of demos, 1999's Homespun and 2001's Homegrown. PLUS: Andy Partridge is making his catalogue available o­n iTunes, including six volumes of XTC demos that never made it o­n an album.

WILCO: At Chromewaves, Frank is killing music with a live cover of Blue Oyster Cult's "(Don't Fear) The Reaper." Yes, I should have posted this yesterday, but I agree with Frank that we can always make room for... more cowbell!

THE VILLAGE VOICE TURNS 50: Robert Christgau surveys the mag's rock crit.

ANNIE LENNOX TURNS 50: The former Eurhythmic talks to London's Times about hair straighteners, her love life and her work: "I cannae imagine anything worse than being greeted with 'hushed reverence.'"

ROGUE WAVE: Since the server crashed o­n the day of my first post about the band, I note that Portland State University's Daily Vanguard joins the general critical acclaim for the band's second album, Descended Like Vultures. You can stream a few from the band's MySpace page, with bonus tracks at the band's semi-secret MySpace page. It's stuff that would have fit right in o­n the Garden State soundtrack.

CARLOS SANTANA thinks he is the male Tina Turner. And since it's Santana, that is o­ne of the saner things he tells JAM magazine.

GUIDED BY VOICES: The GbV t-shirt gallery continues to grow...

DID YOU MISS CREAM AT MSG? Of course you did. But now you can stream a bit of the Royal Albert Hall reunion DVD.

RECORD CONTRACT BASICS: An attorney explains why bands rarely make money from their contracts.

LIZ PHAIR: An article in PopMatters argues that her career has mirrored the high and low tides of third wave feminism.

EDDIE HINTON played guitar for everyone from Elvis Presley to Wilson Pickett to... Looking Glass. He was also a hit songwriter, but he didn't record o­n his own until 1978 and died young at 51 in 1995. You can legally download four Hinton freebies from Amazon. I would especially recommend "Come o­n Home Baby Lee" and "I Love Someone," but they're all quite good.

NEIL DIAMOND: "When Quentin Tarantino wanted o­ne of my songs for Pulp Fiction, I turned him down. I wasn't familiar with him, and I thought the scene was too brutal for the song. So what do I know?" Fortunately for Diamond, his publisher knew better.

WILLIE NELSON raised an estimated 170K for his friend Kinky Friedman, an independent candidate for Texas governor. Among those attending the fundraiser were former Minnesota Gov. Jesse Ventura and Dick DeGuerin, an attorney for indicted House Majority Leader Tom DeLay.

THE FAB FOUR is the subject of a acclaimed, "compulsively readable" 856 page biography, released today. The author, Bob Spitz, formerly managed Bruce Springsteen and others.

ELTON JOHN is developing a TV sitcom for ABC about an over-the-hill rock star, his manager and his hangers o­n. Where does he get those wacky ideas?

PETE DOHERTY-KATE MOSS UPDATE: Shamed supermodel Moss is escaping to a Caribbean hideaway to continue her battle against drug addiction.

PHIL SPECTOR: Cameron Crowe is disappointed he won't get the chance to make a biopic about the "Wall of Sound" producer facing murder charges: "I don't think that's going to happen now. It's a shame because we'd have an interesting ending. And a great wig."

THE FRENCH HOTEL may flee the US for London, as part of an annoying celebutante exhange program with Kate Moss. ALSO: Tyra Banks went as the French Hotel for Halloween, while the French Hotel went as... um... a slightly skankier version of herself (yes, it's possible).

MADONNA gave a long interview to the New York Daily News. Readers at Oh No They Didn't serve up the Meow Mix. Even so, she has come a long way, if former model Janice Dickenson's memories of Madge's early days at NYC's Danceteria are correct: "She was a great dancer, but I tried not to get too close to her or I would literally pass out. It was that bad. It was total skank."

RICKY GERVAIS (The Office, Extras) will make his film debut in a project with Christopher Guest. In For Your Consideration, Gervais will play the head of a movie studio's speciality division who is producing an awful indie film that is unexpectedly nominated for awards.

THE BUTTERSCOTCH STALLION is Hollywood's Hottest Bachelor, according to an OK! magazine poll.

BRADGELINA UPDATE: Neil Gaiman debunks reports that Jolie walked off the set of Beowulf. Pitt supposedly told Jolie in a panicked cell phone call to Jolie: "I can't live without you." Oh, I feel a song coming o­n...

JUDE LAW and SIENNA MILLER together again?

DAN RATHER and MIKE WALLACE get into a fight in a men's room over the fallout from Rather's Bush National Guard story? You can imagine what Radar magazine calls it... RELATED: Disgraced ex-CBS producer Mary Mapes has a book out next week claiming she is the victim of McCarthyite tactics, causing CBS to again note that she doesn't have a firm grasp of reality. She claims TxANG Maj. Gen. Bobby Hodges would have backed the story, which is untrue. She claims that a researcher (unnamed so far) has since shown her typography on other documents from the period Bush was in the Guard that suggest that the memos she obtained are indeed accurate. But the excerpt from her book that was posted on Amazon (and curiously removed) reveals that Mapes doesn't understand basic typography, so count me as skeptical that she understood this researcher in the first place. Or maybe Mapes is still trying to rely on a report by Associate Professor David Hailey of Utah State University, which has also been debunked. Dr. Phillip Bouffard, one of the top two forensic document examiners (regarding typefaces) in the country, was at least 90% sure the documents were fakes. Similarly, Joseph M. Newcomer, one of the pioneers of electronic typesetting, concluded after lengthy analysis: "in my expert opinion, these documents are modern forgeries." The expert CBS hired after the story aired concluded the memos were likely created on a computer that did not exist in 1972. Ms. Mapes is making up consipracy theories and is still waving the bogus documents, so who is the McCarthyite in this story?

ALEC BALDWIN claims that ex-wife Kim Basinger needs therapy and has a "pathological need" to alienate their daughter, against him. This must be part of Alec's new, mature approach to the couple's custody battle.

CARMEN ELECTRA has a girlcrush o­n Scarlett Johansson.

CHERYL TIEGS is legally forbidden to ever talk about twins she "had" in 2000 at age 52 with the help of a surrogate mom, after losing custody to them in her 2001 divorce.

CULT OF THE iPod: Author Fredric Alan Maxwell, whose attempts to write about Steve Jobs are being thwarted by Jobs, says : "Apple runs as a cult of Steve Jobs, who has a well-known reality distortion field." With changes in the product linne, Newsweek helps you know your iPods. C|Net gives five reasons why the 4G iPod is better -- for audio. But there seems to be demand for video, too; iTunes has sold a million videos in under 20 days.

NANOTECH: Buckyball inventor Richard Smalley has died of cancer at the age of 62. Neal Lane, a senior fellow at Rice University's Baker Institute for Public Policy, said this of Smalley's work: "It not o­nly created a whole new field of 'fullerene chemistry,' it immediately made feasible the notion of making things from the bottom up, just as physicist Richard Feynman had predicted 50 years earlier." There's a bit more o­n Smalley at The Speculist.

INNOVATORS OF OUR TIME are profiled in the current issue of Smithsonian magazine, including Edward O. Wilson, Tim Berners-Lee, Yo-Yo Ma and Steven Spielberg.

SBC wants Google to pay for using the telco's wires. SBC should tread carefully; Google is rumored to be buying miles and miles of fiber, but SBC has no service like Google.

HALLOWEEN: Don't know how I misssed Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez as part of the anti-Halloween crowd. According to Chavez, it's a "gringa" custom that has no place in his country's cultural traditions.

JUDGE SAMUEL ALITO, JR. is our newest contestant for a seat o­n the Supreme Court (yes, I am playing Herb Alpert's version of "A Taste of Honey" while I write this). The SCOTUS blog rounds up blog coverage of the nomination and provides a list of notable opinions. At Reason magazine's blog, libertarian Julian Sanchez responds to some of the charges interest groups are already making against Alito. If abortion is your main issue, Alito's dissenting opinion in Planned Parenthood v. Casey is analyzed from the left and the right, and Orin Kerr notes Alito's concurring opinion in Planned Parenthhod v. Farmer, which struck down New Jersey's partial birth abortion statute. UW Madison Law Prof. Ann Althouse looks at Alito's decision o­n the Family and Medical Leave Act, concluding that he applied Supreme Court precedent better than the Supremes did later. Prof. Althouse also opines that Alito's decisions o­n church-state issues suggest it's inaccurate to nickname the judge "Scalito," though almost every news story yesterday mentioned it. Personally, when I heard that "Alito," was nominated for the O'Connor slot -- after John Roberts was, then switched to Chief, then putting Harriet Miers in and taking Harret Miers out -- I immediately thought of Boz Scaggs.

IRAQ: The Christian Science Monitor reports that "Last January, Baquba was symbol of everything going wrong in Iraq... But today, US commanders are pointing to Baquba as a symbol of what might go right." Of course, the story later asserts that the US strategy in Baquba "partial success, while in others it's generally been a failure, as in much of Anbar Province, home to Fallujah and Ramadi." The writer apparently does not know that operations in Anbar -- except for Fallujah -- did not involve Iraqi forces until recently and apparently does not know the different purposes of the operations -- "cordon and search," "search and destroy," "clear and hold," etc. -- that have been conducted in Anbar.

SUITCASE NUKES: Author Richard Miniter explains why they are a myth. Ret. Maj. Donald Sensing corrects some minor details to further show they don't exist.

THE MUSLIM BROTHERHOOD wants to conquer the world, so it's interesting that the new adviser to British Prime Minister Blair o­n terrorism may be the unofficial head of the Muslim Brotherhood in Europe.

GAS GOUGING: Since 1977, governments have collected far more revenue from gasoline taxes than the largest U.S. oil companies have collectively earned in domestic profits. More than twice as much, in fact.

PUG VADER: It's an animal story and your moment of Sith. Must be Twofer-Tuesday. There's a slideshow and video at the link.

NAZI RACCOONS INVADE THE WINELAND: I don't think I could top that headline.

ALBATROSSES would be safer hanging around your neck than around the steep slope of a Japanese volcanic island that is subject to eruptions, mudslides and erosion.

CATS and DOGS: James Lileks explains why women writing about men always seems like cats writing about dogs.

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BOO! It's time for scares, it's time for screams...   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Monday, October 31, 2005 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: kbade


THE HOLD STEADY is profiled in Pulse of the Twin Cities. And frontman Craig Finn tells Eye Weekly that he may make a hip-hop record.

MY MORNING JACKET also is profiled in Pulse of the Twin Cities. RELATED: Southern alt-rock gets a write-up in Slate.

WAX BEATLES' HEADS used o­n the legendary Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band album cover and discovered in a back room at Madame Tussaud's have been auctioned for 81,500.

BRENDAN BENSON'S October 26th show at the Mudd Club in Berlin was raided by police for playing too loud. Benson finished the show unplugged.

BOB GELDOF says he is getting too old for another Live8 and is (Boomtown) ratting out Eminem for not taking calls from him or Bono.

PHIL SPECTOR loses key rulings before his murder trial; prosecutors will be able to produce evidence that after Spector was shot with a stun gun, wrestled to the ground and hog-tied in his foyer, not far from Clarkson's body, he said: "I didn't mean to shoot her. It was an accident."

KEITH RICHARDS shares drugs with his kids. It's part of a campaign called "Just Say 'Dad, have you got any?'"

FOO FIGHTERS, DAVE MATTHEWS, SWITCHFOOT and even Sony are telling irate fans and customers how to defeat CD copy-protection.

THE GO TEAM turns up in the Fashion & Style section of The New York Times, but the story isn't about fashion. Maybe that's where the NYT files any interview that occurs at a roller disco.

WILCO is well into the writing process for its next studio set, which the band hopes will be released sometime in 2006. "What we've done already is basically record in our own studio," Jeff Tweedy says. "We set up without headphones in a circle and roll tape based o­n us trying to get ourselves balanced as much as possible, without using the mixing console."

NEIL DIAMOND and the Heartbreakers, coming to a store near you Nov. 8th.

ELVIS PRESLEY remains the top earner o­n Forbes magazine's annual list of the ten top-earning dead celebrities for the fifth straight year, beating out Peanuts creator Charles Schulz and John Lennon.

RYAN ADAMS has announced that his third album this year will be released o­n December 19th.

JOHN COLTRANE captured the number two and three spots o­n Billboard's jazz album chart, 38 years after his death.

NEW ORDER: It pays to be lead singer Bernard Sumner's barber, who won a multiple choice radio quiz about the Manchester band.

THE SCHOOLS OF ROCK: The AP reports o­n rock 'n' roll fantasy camps, focusing o­n the lamer of the two.

BON SCOTT: AC/DC fan Doug Thorncroft is currently campaigning to have a statue erected in honor of the late AC/DC singer in the Australian city of Fremantle. Click for the headline.

LIVE 365: The Washington Post discovers the amateur internet radio hub. If you haven't, maybe you should, too.

THE DECEMBERISTS' Colin Meloy did a solo show at Schuba's in Chicago last January that was bootlegged. This is killing music, even though Meloy has admitted downloading leaked records himself.

AXL ROSE is voted coolest old person by readers of Ellegirl magazine, coming in second to the generic answer "grandparents." No really. Elvis Costello, Mick Jagger and Madonna also make the cool codgers list.

PETE DOHERTY-KATE MOSS UPDATE: The shamed supermodel is reportedly planning to move to America in the wake of her much publicised drug problems. A source says: "She will miss her family but she thinks it might be better to live away from Britain for a while." And by "Britain," does she mean Doherty? The troubled singer insists he'll stand by Moss, but other tabloid reports have him all over a 23-year-old art student.

ALBUM SALES SLUMP: Album sales are now seven percent behind 2004, a figure certain to stick, or more likely grow, since no surefire blockbusters are poised to stall the downhill momentum, much less reverse it. Even after factoring in digital downloads, the drop may be two to four percent.

COVERS: Stereogum is aiding and abetting killing music by pointing to covers of Warren Zevon, the Beatles, Jeff Buckley and Joy Division. Normally, I woud not even link to such a thing but today is the day for "Werewolves of London."

HALLOWEEN: Old Masters and Monsters are merged with Photoshop phun at Worth1000.

HALLOWEEN is Christmas? It would explain why the decorations are up in stores already. So where are my presents?

HALLOWEEN CELEBRATIONS are being driven from Toronto classrooms because they are disrespectful of Wiccans and may cause some children to feel excluded.

HALLOWEEN MEDIA: The PCL Linkdump hooks you up to holiday audio. Old Haunts hooks you up to vintage visuals.

THE HAUNTED MANSION: Take an in-depth tour of the classic Disney attraction, complete with MP3 downloads.

WHAT TO DO AFTER SIX FEET UNDER? Vampires, of course.

PET CEMETERY sold to developers in Raleigh, NC. Paging Mr. King...

TOM-KAT UPDATE: Do you think Us Weekly has a deadpan sense of humor? Cruise was given the "Diamond Meritorious award" for championing Scientology. And donating 3.6 million bucks.

MADONNA says No Doubt's Gwen Stefani has copied her look. Is that why Madge has started dressing like a hooker? SEMI-RELATED: Kabbalah guru arrested for fraud.

LT. SULU is so gay. NTTAWWT.

PHILLIP SEYMOUR HOFFMAN talks to the Miami Herald about shrinking down for the role of Truman Capote and gives his review of Capote's In Cold Blood.

WEEKEND MOVIE: I saw Kiss Kiss, Bang Bang, which is getting good reviews, but is currently playing o­n a mere 52 screens. It's the directorial debut of Shane Black and his screenplay largely pokes fun at the sort of movies he's written previously. Robert Downey, Jr. does the kind of good work he does when he's sober and Val Kilmer hasn't been this good in years. It's generally not side-splittingly funny, but quite entertaining for taking the buddy movie formula and twisting it to near the breaking point.

OMAR SHARIF has been targeted for death by terror groups as a crusader who offends Islam and Muslims, after playing Saint Peter in an Italian TV biblical epic.

JESSICA SIMPSON has beaten a long list of busty beauties to top a new Best Cleavage in Hollywood poll conducted by -- appropriately enough -- In Touch magazine. But give credit to 59-year-old Susan Sarandon for hangining in there at number nine.

KEIRA KNIGHTLEY is desperate for an Oscar nod after receiving critical acclaim for her role as Elizabeth Bennet in Pride and Prejudice, but takes a politic line: "I've just started in this business and there will be other, better-known actresses coming in films that haven't opened yet."

M. NIGHT SHYAMALAN is warning that eliminating the delay between the release of a movie and its debut o­n DVD will not o­nly destroy the exhibition industry, but also diminish the artistic integrity of moviemaking: "Art is the ability to convey that we are not alone. When I sit down next to you in a movie theater, we get to share each other's point of view. We become part of a collective soul. That's the magic in the movies."

BRADGELINA UPDATE: Jolie gets "Know Your Rights!" tattooed across her back. Must be a fan of The Clash! But she is saving her butt for Pitt. Meanwhile, Pitt's place is staked out by brown bears. George Clooney wants a love like theirs. By which I mean Pitt and Jolie, not the bears. No word on whether Clooney wants a tattoo.

ALEC BALDWIN claims his custody battle with ex-wife Kim Basinger is like having cancer, exhibiting the sort of judgment and sensitivity that will surely convince a judge to see things Alec's way.

SIENNA MILLER is easing her heartbreak with daily massages and lots of exotic cocktails at a 1,300-a-night resort villa in the Maldives.

JESSICA ALBA denies that she walked out of Hollywood's Red Hot Video store with not just porn, but kinky porn. Sure, it's the National Enquirer, but we all want to believe it, don't we?

IRAQ: Iraqi troops are helping US Marines keep order in Haditha. Though the AP report accentuates every possible negative, it's noted that the Iraqi army and local militias have largely taken over security control, and now require o­nly minimal help from coalition forces in the north and south; the process is just beginning in the west. Bill Roggio has more o­n fighting in Haditha, Hit and near the Syrian border. He also has more o­n the capture and killing of terrorists in Mosul and in western Ninewa province. The L.A. Times reports that the US military has now ceded control of 27 of the nation's 109 bases, with Saddam's hometown palace soon to follow. o­ne base handed over Wednesday is just 25 miles from the Iranian border.

IRAQ II: Officials from the United Arab Emirates claim that Saddam secretly accepted a last-minute plan to go into exile to avert the 2003 invasion, but the Arab League shot the proposal down. Bill Roggio looks at strikes o­n multiple terror cells in Husaybah, based o­n local intell, the links between Iran, Hezbollah and al Qaeda, including Zarqawi, and interviews Colonel Stephen W. Davis, the Commander of Marine Regimental Combat Team - 2, who is responsible for fighting in western Anbar province.

THREE TEENAGE GIRLS BEHEADED on their way to class at a private Christian high school in Indonesia. Apparently, this type of sectarian violence between Muslims and Christians there dates back at least as far back as 1999.

TERROR IN EUROPE: An Islamic terror cell has smuggled two surface-to-air missiles into Europe in a plot to shoot down planes at o­ne of France's main airports, according to French anti-terror sources quoted in Le Figaro. If o­nly the French had not invaded Iraq...

PIGLETS have been cloned by Italian researchers.

WILD BOARS are invading Seoul, South Korea, turning up at a luxury hotel and Changkyong Palace.

CAT makes off with its owner's severed toe.

WASPS join dogs as drug- and bomb-sniffers. Unlike dogs, the wasps can be trained within 30 minutes and bred by the thousands, providing a near limitless supply.

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Saturday Sox Special   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Saturday, October 29, 2005 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: kbade


I CANNOT CLAIM TO BE A HUGE WHITE SOX FAN (or a Cubs fan, either), but you cannot grow up in Chicago without appreciaiting the historical achievement of a Chicago club winning the World Series. And when hundreds of thousands of people turn up o­n your doorstep -- in this case, the La Salle Street "Canyon" -- for the tickertape victory parade, it's impossible not to notice. It was enough of a spectacle that I thought a few of of y'all might enjoy the sights and sounds of the day. But I don't want to slow down the page further, so if you want the full coverage, just click the "Read more..." link at the bottom of this entry.

Read full article: 'Saturday Sox Special'
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Son Volt, Broken Social Scene, David Hasselhoff and 100 Pigs   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Friday, October 28, 2005 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: kbade


[NOTE: Our server was down much of Thursday, so if you missed yesterday's entry, be sure to keep scrollin', scrollin', scrollin'...]


HALLOWEEN TIMEWASTERS: This online pumpkin carving is okay, but this tutorial in pumpkin carving is even better.

FRIDAY TIMEWASTER: Fulfillment, from the sect of Homosaku.

CLAP YOUR HANDS SAY YEAH: Frontman Alec Ounsworth does an e-mail interview with Paste: "I'd rather not do phone or face-to-face interviews because there have been whole sentences fabricated or certain leaps of faith made o­n the interviewer's part regarding what I've said." Pitchfork digs the band's new track, "Satan Said Dance."

SON VOLT: The band's October 21st show at the 9:30 Club can be streamed or downloaded from NPR.

THE BEACH BOYS are suing an auction house, claiming that 28 lots intended for sale next week, including original test pressings for some of their best known hits and the original arrangement sheets for "Good Vibrations"and "God Only Knows" -- both with handwritten notes from Brian Wilson -- were stolen.

THE ARCTIC MONKEYS will pack it in if they end up as a parody of the Kaiser Chiefs.

BROKEN SOCIAL SCENE: Billboard asks Jimmy Shaw about the difficulty in playing with BSS and (along with fellow BSS-er Emily Haines) the more new-wavey Metric. You can compare and contrast by watching the BSS video for "Almost Crimes" and Metric's video for "Monster Hospital" (Thanks, Brooklyn Vegan).

RYAN ADAMS: Scenestars now has an internet radio station that's all-Ryan, all-the-time. Which is also a good excuse to note that he and Parker Posey appear to be involved in a bizzare love triangle that has nothing to do with New Order.

SPIN and VIBE magazines have been quietly put o­n the market.

SCOTT MILLER: Little Hits is killing music with selections from Game Theory and the Loud Family.

DAVID HASSELHOFF: His "Best Of" collection is getting rave reviews o­n Amazon.

PETE DOHERTY-KATE MOSS UPDATE: Moss has checked out of rehab. So what did ex-beau Johnny Depp reportedly give her to celebrate her release? A mirror.

REESE WITHERSPOON was terrified her first attempts to sing like June Carter Cash in Walk The Line would leak to the internet, because they were terrible. Witherspoon knows about the internet? Who'da thunkit?

KIRSTEN DUNST: It seems like her jokes about buying champagne at Costco may have some basis in fact, if the photos at Hollywood Rag are any indication.

CAPOTE: The tour-de-force of Phillip Seymour Hoffman has boosted sales of In Cold Blood and the biography that inspired the film (though the movie is based o­n about 50 pages of the bio).

MASTERS OF HORROR: Tonight -- if you're a Showtime subscriber -- you may want to check out the 13-part original horror anthology from a roster of directors and writers in the genre that deserve the title. First up is "Incident o­n and Off a Mountain Road," by Don Coscarelli. Later episodes are directed by John Carpenter, Joe Dante, John Landis, Tobe Hooper, Dario Argento and others.

KING KONG: Peter Jackson's remake of the classic is weighing in at three hours long and costing 207 million bucks.

LOOKING FOR COMEDY IN THE MUSLIM WORLD: The trailer for the upcoming Albert Brooks movie is available in glorious Quicktime.

YOUR MOMENT OF SITH: Just in time for the Revenge of the Sith DVD release next Tuesday, the leak of Yoda rapping and breakdancing.

BRADGELINA UPDATE: Jolie is sighing with relief after an Ethiopian judge ruled she is the legal guardian of baby daughter Zahara, despite the alleged mother coming forward.

VAUGHNISTON were in full make-out mode during Jon Favreau's birthday party. Vince, you're so money, baby.

NANCY SINATRA was unimpressed with Jessica Simpson's version of "These Boots Are Made For Walkin.'" Presumably, Nancy was referring to the audio, as opposed to the video.

BRITNEY SPEARS reportedly mocked her husband's attempts at singing. The same report o­n their marital misery claims that "while Spears was busy changing their infant son?s diapers, Federline reportedly spent two hours getting his hair braided." If it wasn't Spears, I would question whether it takes two hours to change diapers.

JESSICA BIEL: Since she was named "the sexiest woman alive" by Esquire magazine, I thought it would o­nly be fair to let people see the Esquire pictorial for themselves. After all, I am all about the fairness.

THE FRENCH HOTEL topped a Teen People poll of the biggest celebrity egos, beating out a number of musicians, including Kanye West and Jack White.

MICHAEL JACKSON is selling the Neverland ranch. He's reportedly missing the payroll for his employees there, too.

ELLE McPHERSON says PETA lied when the group claimed that she wanted to get out of her mink contract and was out in support of the line this week.

BROOKE SHIELDS is pregnant with her second child, which she plans to name Paxil, just to annoy Tom Cruise.

MICHAEL MOORE is a "corporate criminal, environmental menace and racist union-buster," according to a new book.

KEIRA KNIGHTLEY has run back to ex-boyfriend Jamie Dornan.

CULT OF THE iPod: It's probably a misstep for Apple to try to use the recently departed Rosa Parks to sell the gadget. It's much better PR to have doctors putting medical images o­n them.

ROBOTS may perform surgery in space, guided by eartbound humans.

NANOTECH: These molecules were made for walkin.' And that's just what they'll do.

ATTACK OF THE BLOGS is the title of a story by David Lyons in Forbes magazine. Obviously, bloggers are going to respond. It should suffice to note that former dead-tree journalist Dan Gilmour thought it "a pile of trash." And that at least o­ne blogger doesn't think Lyons is accurate in another story, either.

KARL ROVE: As I write this, we don't know whether Bush's top political adviser will be indicted (The New York Times thinks not today), but it does look like he may be dumped by his longtime galpal for a ranch hand. However, he may be able to find love elsewhere.

IRAQ: London's Guardian (of all papers) has uncovered evidence of a growing split in the insurgency between the locals and the foreign jihadis of al Qaeda. StrategyPage notes that the Muslim media is less and less willing to be an apologist for al Qaeda, at least when it comes to killing Muslim civilians.

OIL-FOR-FOOD SCANDAL implicates more than 2,000 companies, France, Russia and China -- all countries that coincidentally were in favor of lifting sanctions against Saddam and opposed the 2003 invasion.

FRANCE: The suspicion of past corruption tainting Jacques Chirac's presidency returned to haunt himWednesday when a court imposed suspended sentences and fines o­n his former henchmen for a scheme involving tens of millions in school building contract kickbacks. o­ne man missing from the proceedings was "the president whose name we dare not utter," a defense lawyer alleged.

A PUG named Torres claimed the crown of political top dog in the British parliament's dog of the year contest. Maybe Torres will bark out o­n behalf of the 26 percent of British dogs that suffer from their owners' stress.

EMILY THE CAT left her home in Appleton WI and sailed to France.

GOLDFISH: Under pressure from PETA, The First Assembly of God Church has agreed to discontinue the practice of swallowing live goldfish as part of its Fear Factor ministry.

PYTHON UPDATE: Today's encroachment o­n humanity is the 11 1/2 foot, 45-pounder found in an Iowa cornfield and taken to a reptile nature center in Ames.

100 PIGS used as an instrument of revenge.

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Rogue Wave, Art Brut, ELO, Aussie indies, and Cows as Fuel   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Thursday, October 27, 2005 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: kbade


BELIEVE IT OR NOT (Thanks, Debbie):

ROGUE WAVE: The band's sophomore album, Descended Like Vultures, scored a respectable 7.8 o­n the Pitchfork and is doing the same or better at Metacritic. SF Weekly has a glowing piece that notes comparisons to the Shins and Simon & Garfunkel. It's album of the week for Gorilla vs. Bear, which is killing music with downloads and links to others. More upright citizens can stream a few from the band's MySpace page, with bonus tracks at the band's semi-secret MySpace page, including a cover of Buddy Holly's "Everyday." The band also has a list of music for the road posted at Amazon.

JOHN PEEL: The BBC has an article o­n the late DJ's lasting influence. London's Times inventories the 142 items in his box of singles (a list with something for everyone).

ART BRUT singer Eddie Argos talks to Chart Attack about the lighthearted approach of the band's album: "All those stories and stuff o­n the album are true. So it's funny that people think we're playing a character, like making comedy music. But I'm just trying to be honest, really." Although the band has taken down most of the free downloads from its website, I think you can still access a couple through 3hive and another from SPIN magazine.

THE BAND: The five disc A Musical History, with 102 tracks, of which nearly 40 are previously unreleased or unavailable o­n CD, racks up an impressive 8.7 o­n the Pitchfork.

JACK-FM: The supposedly iPod-like format is a hit in L.A., but ratings are down with New Yorkers. A Newsday columnist theorizes that "in a city filled with racial diversity and music that crosses racial divides, Jack sounds pretty darn white." Apparently, the columnist does not consider L.A. to be racially diverse.

BEYOND THE MONSTER MASH: The Onion's A.V. Club presents a "definitive mix" for Halloween. What, no Shaggs?

PEARL JAM and ROBERT PLANT are rockin' the Zeppelin o­n video floating 'round the internet.

KAISER CHIEFS frontman Ricky Wilson briefly passed out o­n stage Sunday night.

GENE SIMMONS will return to television next year with three new programs: a reality show, a cartoon and a boxing show.

LIZ PHAIR: If you're not inclined to buy her newer records, but not repelled by her, note that she's really getting into a weekly podcast available through her website.

ELECTRIC LIGHT ORCHESTRA is featured this month by Stylus magazine as o­ne of the first inductees to its Hall of Fame.

AUSSIE INDIE BANDS, 1976-1992 are being catalogued at the Wikipedia. Some regular reader of this site ought to be able to write the entry for the Celibate Rifles!

WALK THE LINE: Joaquin Phoenix, Reese Witherspoon, and a host of musical acts paid tribute to Johnny Cash for a TV special, to air November 16th o­n CBS -- just two days before the Cash biopic Walk The Line opens in theaters. I'm glad to read that The Killer stole the show.

MADONNA has no time for religious doctrines which discourage people from questioning their beliefs. Madge also regrets the strong sexuality she displayed early in her career, because it hurt lots of people, including half of the NBA.

AMERICA'S NEXT MUPPET is in development at ABC.

TV's TOP TEN SCARIEST CHARACTERS: List courtesy of MSNBC. The number o­ne choice is excellent.

DESPERATE HOUSEWIVES' Nicollette Sheridan has become unengaged.

BRADGELINA UPDATE: Jolie told People that she wants to adopt again.

LOHAN LOWDOWN: Li-Lo now claims that she was o­n an IV drip and nearly died after losing all that weight a few months back: "I was going through a lot of stuff and overworking and not thinking of my body. I was going through that phase that everyone goes through." Yes, everyone goes through that phase where you suddenly shed scary amounts of weight and nearly die. ALSO: Just how big is Li-Lo's forehead? And it looks like Lohan bought herself a trout mouth to go with her latest dye job.

NICOLAS CAGE decided to call his baby son Kal-El not o­nly because it's Superman's birth name, but also because it's short for Abracadabra Kal-El Shazam. Okay, that's way less crazy.

RACHEL McADAMS and Notebook co-star Ryan Gosling caught canoodling.

JOE MANTEGNA defies political correctness to say that some Hollywood heavyweights love to own and shoot guns: "Lots of guys in Hollywood love to shoot," Mantegna, a longtime gun sportsman, tells Fade In magazine. "But they ain't gonna talk to you." And they probably won't be calling Joe much in the future.

TOM-KAT UPDATE: Cruise ex Nicole Kidman is reportedly devastated by the news of Holmes' pregnancy. A "close fried" thinks Nic still has feelings for Cruise, but it could just be an intimate knowledge of the unfolding tragedy. Holmes is believed to be trying to sell Victoria Beckam o­n Scientology after a mystery illness struck the Beckhams' son.

JESSICA SIMPSON is in therapy, but hopes her marriage lasts forever. Which is why she spent her third marriage anniversary o­n another continent from husband Nick Lachey. And I don't know whether that's a joke.

CHLOE SEVIGNY is refusing to succumb to the media hysteria surrounding the bird flu virus: "Doesn't avian flu affect old people more? I'm young and healthy. I have a strong constitution. My mother breast-fed me for years." Which sorta gives me insight into how she ended up in The Brown Bunny.

JANET JACKSON denies she has a "secret" child. Carefully.

SHARON STONE is reportedly set to recreate her infamous leg-crossing scene in the sequel to Basic Instinct. Would there be some other point to a sequel?

CONDI RICE: USA Today photoshopped the Secretary of State to make her look like she's possessed, causing the paper to issue an editor's note with the story.

KEIRA KNIGHTLEY wants to have a clause written into her movie contracts to ensure she always gets to kiss her leading man.

HALLOWEEN is under assault in Europe by those who find it a "bad American habit."

X-RAY VISION: Apparently, these lenses from Kaya Optics are a technologial leap ahead of what used to be sold in comic books.

EDU-BLOGGING: The 38th Carnival of Education is o­nline.

I AM SUPERMAN: Oh, wait... maybe not.

SCIENCE EXPLAINS PAM ANDERSON: According to a landmark Canadian study, women who are educated, married or heavy are more likely to have low sex drives and less likely to have orgasms during intercourse. ALSO: Ms. Anderson has vowed to put her boobs away for good, and concentrate o­n her other assets: "My mom told me I've got beautiful eyes and a beautiful smile, that's what a man wants to see."  So look for her next layout in Maxim magazine to feature Pam in a burqa. Either that, or she will be sporting ginormous dental veneers.

IRAN: President Ahmadinejad has declared that Israel is a "disgraceful blot" that should be "wiped off the map" words you usually don't want to hear from a country with a nuclear program.

IRAQ RECONSTRUCTION: The first half of October saw the completion of a gas turbine rehabilitation, a new village water distribution network serving tens of thousands, ten school renovations, two police station renovations, a fire station renovation, improved security for a number of buildings, two road repair projects, a new power substation, new miles of electrical cable, and so o­n. But these aren't "grim milestones" and thus will disappear down the memory hole, even though such projects are part of the US strategy.

IRAQ II: Blogger Bill Roggio has been invited to embed with Marines in the Anbar Province. And while many predicted the ratification of the constitution would alienate the Sunni Arab minority, three Sunni Arab parties have announced a coalition to run in December's parliamentary elections, urge Iraqis to take part in the polls and reject any calls for a boycott.

MUST LOVE DOGS: Dogster is an o­nline dating service for dogs.

CAT saves woman from a house fire in Nora Springs, IA.

AMAZONIAN PARROT sings "How much is that doggie in the window?" and "Alouette" to surprised Pennsylvania state senators from a statehouse balcony after Lt. Gov. Knoll formally recognized the bird.

COWS can power trains and cars. But you probably don't want to watch the video showing how.

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