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The Magic Numbers, Drive-By Truckers, Venomous Lizards and a Lemur   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Friday, November 18, 2005 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: kbade

Karl

THE WEEKEND STARTS HERE:

HARRY POTTER AND THE GOBLET OF FIRE is still doing quite well on the ol' Tomatometer, but what did I think of it, and can I make it spoiler-free? (Yes, yes, hit the midnight show, sacrificing the obviously needed beauty sleep to fully service the Pate community.) Many of the reviews call this one the best yet. I'm inclined to disagree, because: (a) the first one had a great, tart sensibility I hadn't seen in a "family" film since Willy Wonka; and (b) even as someone who has not read the books (for shame!), I could tell that the proceedings here were being streamlined and condensed considerably, or Steve Kloves' screenplay wouldn't be quite so abrupt in spots. Nevertheless, this may be my second-favorite and I quite liked Prisoner of Azkaban. Given the constant (and increasing) problem for the series of trying to be complete enough for the fans of the books within even 2 1/2 hours, I thought it balanced the action set pieces and darker revelations against the the comic wizards-coming-of-age material fairly well, though I think the ultimate mystery was given away a bit early. GoF also points toward some of the larger themes that I presume are fleshed out in the later books (I may not read the books, but I do read about them.) Certainly, Dumbledore's speeches, both to the Hogwarts student body and to Harry at the conclusion are metaphorically timely. And I definitiely enjoyed it enough that I won't be regretting it as I'm slumped at my desk a few short hours from now.

WALK THE LINE: I'll be seeing the Johnny and June Carter Cash biopic this weekend and report o­n Monday. In the meantime, I have to say my all-time favorite book is Johnny Cash's autobiography "Cash" by Johnny Cash.

FRIDAY TIMEWASTER: Spot the Fake Smile. Can you tell the undisputed truth?

BROKEN SOCIAL SCENE co-founder Brendan Canning thinks the band is a source of Canadian pride: "People are a bit tired of bigger different artists (who) I don't want to name being ambassadors for our country."

A COMPUTER PROGRAM THAT PICKS HITS has been developed by two Massachusetts Institute of Technology Ph.D. grads. The response is so specific at times that it can forecast how a single will perform o­n the charts and spit out a review, guessing what words will be used to describe it: "My instructor was Mr. Langley, and he taught me to sing a song. If you'd like to hear it I can sing it for you."

THE MAGIC NUMBERS and FEIST get better reviews as opening acts than headliner Bright Eyes in the Louisville Courier-Journal. ALSO: Brooklyn Vegan links you to The Magic Numbers streams and (killing music) MP3s.

THE ROLLING STONES, cranked o­n crumpets and baked beans, turned it up to eleven in San Francisco, much to the annoyance of the usually laid-back bay locals. One angry resident, Ted Weinstein, complained: "Just because they're too old to hear their music doesn't mean it has to be so loud."

DRIVE-BY TRUCKERS' Jason Isbell talks to Creative Loafing about being the new kid.

INDIE GONE MERSH: Scott at Stereogum posts about commercial artistry. He has a link to the Coca-Cola sponsored movie scored by The Flaming Lips, but it may be easier to see the robot-laden video at them5.com The site also has a short film scored with Guided by Voices' "Back to the Lake."

THE UK MUSIC HALL OF FAME induction ceremony brought out the legends, with Prime Minister Tony Blair lauding the Eurhythmics, Pink and Floyd still sniping at each other and Black Sabbath stealing the show.

SONY COPY-PROTECTION DEBACLE: Boing-Boing rounds up the coverage to keep us up to speed o­n the story of Sony's dangerous rootkit. It looks like some heads will roll in the aftermath.

BONO spent ,700 to have his hat flown to him in Italy - first class. This is just o­ne of the "top 50 rock extravaganzas" compiled for Blender magazine. "We love pop stars at this magazine, but it is clear that in many ways they are complete idiots," said Clark Collis, a senior writer at Blender.

GARY GLITTER: Vietnamese authorities are searching for the former British rock star over his alleged relationship with a Vietnamese teenager. Glitter was convicted in Britain in 1999 of possessing child pornography and was expelled from Cambodia in 2002 for unspecified reasons.

TOM-KAT UPDATE: The Malcontent has posted a clip from South Park's "Trapped In The Closet" episode. E! gossip chief Ted Casablanca hears that Cruise and Holmes are not getting married any second now, but Perez Hilton hears they are.

JOHN MALKOVICH has vowed to stay away from stage acting until his children have grown up.

RYAN SEACREST and CNN's ANDERSON COOPER check out the size of eack other's... neckties.

GEOFFREY FEIGER, the high-profile attorney for clients like Dr. Jack Kevorkian and brother to Doug Feiger of The Knack, is under investigation for allegedly attempting to blackmail Michigan state Attorney General Mike Cox.

TARA REID: While early reports had the party girl behaving herself under the watchful eye of her mother at her 30th birthday party, the New York Daily News now reports that she was drinking straight from magnums of Champagne and had to be carried out of the bar by her friends at 4 a.m. Now that's the Tara we all know!

XTINA AGUILERA and her fiance Jordan Bratman are to wed this weekend in a secret ceremony. It's so secret that we know who designed her dress and those of the bridesmaids.

MARK McGRATH of Sugar Ray lands Pam Anderson and still gets no respect. Ouch.

BRITTANY MURPHY has been a very bad girl. Bad enough to get dumped by her agent and her manager for unspecified "personal" reasons. And in Hollywood, that's saying something.

CLARE DANES and JASON SCHWRTZMAN had to get tanked before kissing in Shopgirl.

MICHA BARTON had a wardrobe malfunction o­n The O.C. this week. So of course it's on iFilm already.

JESSICA SIMPSON planned a blow-out 32nd birthday bash for hubby Nick Lachey because she wanted to "show Nick how much she loves him and wants to make things work between them," a source tells Life & Style Weekly. Lachey reportedly told her, "Do what you want, but leave me out of it."

BRITNEY SPEARS was told by her psychic that that she probably would be pregnant again by early next year. Which would explain why the pop tart has reportedly already seen a divorce lawyer.

DENNIS RODMAN will play two games in Iowa with the Cedar Valley Jaguars of the International Basketball League.

BLACK FRIDAY: The holiday shopping season officially kicks into gear a week from now, but you can see what sales the stores are planning now.

OSAMA bin LADEN wants the US to convert to Islam, ditch its constitution, abolish banks, jail homosexuals, ban alcohol, gambling and women's photos in newspapers or advertising and... sign the Kyoto climate change treaty.

IRAQ: Bill Roggio looks at Operation Panther, which seeks to capitalize o­n three key al Qaeda in Iraq insurgents captured in Ramadi. US troops' discovery of 173 mostly Sunni Arab men beaten and malnourished in a secret Interior Ministry jail has sent a jolt of optimism through Baghdad's disaffected Sunni minority. Rep. John Murtha (D-PA) made headlines by calling for an immediate withdrawal of troops because he's seen as a "hawk." But Murtha called the war "unwinnable" a year and a half ago. Sen. John McCain (R-AZ), a frequent critic of the conduct of the war, disagrees with proposals to withdraw, to put it mildly. A CBS News producer tells Marines that he agrees that the coverage of Iraq is unbalanced, is amazed that there aren't more hero stories coming out of the war and that he was outraged by a recent 60 Minutes piece about the o­nce-deadly road to the Baghdad airport which the military has since secured. I confidently predict that CBS News' overall coverage will not change whatsoever.

SENS. ARLEN SPECTER (R-PA) and TOM HARKIN (D-IA) got caught trying to get public buildings named after themselves.

AUSSIE LIZARD has classic rattlesnake venom, scientists report in the journal Nature.

SPARROW UPDATE: The story of a sparrow shot after knocking over 23,000 dominoes laid out for an attempted world record continues to get weirder. Not o­nly has a website been set up to commemorate the "Domino D-Day sparrow," but the site was also hacked by pranksters who put porn o­n the site.

ROADKILL including two deer, a coyote and a possum, were sneaked into a fraternity house at Ball State.

LISBON LEMUR limits locomotive line.

BUCK the DOG is rescued from a 70-foot sinkhole after being trapped for 16 days.

2583 Reads

Worst Covers, Best Bands, Arctic Monkeys, Night Monkeys, Bears and Bison   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Thursday, November 17, 2005 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: kbade

Karl

THE WORST RECORD COVERS OF ALL TIME, according to Pitchfork.

THE ARCTIC MONKEYS: ChartAttack reports that the band exceeded the hype at its North American debut gig in Toronto. At Stereogum, Scott reports the band's first US show was "fun, but I wasn't blown away." Brooklyn Vegan was skeptical at first, but warmed up at the NYC show. As BV notes, you can stream the band at MySpace.

THE TOP 40 BANDS IN AMERICA TODAY makes its annual appearance at Information Leafblower, where Kyle polled over 40 "music/MP3 bloggers," many of which I regularly link here. Knock a few off in favor of a few listed in the comments posted there and you've got a pretty darn good list.

BIG STAR PODCAST: I just noticed that Rykodisc has stuff like Jody Stephens discussing the history and quasi-comeback of the legendary band available for download.

WE ARE SCIENTISTS frontman Keith Murray chats with ChartAttack about the band's facial hair, whether the group really has buzz, and The O.C.

JEFF TWEEDY: The Albany Times-Union reviews the Wilco frontman's solo gig: "Tweedy's set demonstrated that Wilco's success is based first and foremost o­n his skill as a tunesmith."

THE KAISER CHIEFS are forced to cancel Spanish gigs due to a "highly contagious and rare virus."

BELLE AND SEBASTIAN: The BBC has video of a concert including tracks from the upcoming album. (via YANP) But it's not clear whether that ulbum is the previously announced Life Pursuit or the semi-secret o­ne due in three weeks. I'm speculating that the semi-secret o­ne could be a holiday album.

SMITHS REUNION? Rumors run rampant about a January charity fundraiser in Machester being organized by former bassist Andy Rourke.

THE POGUES are re-releasing their classic song "Fairytale Of New York" next month, but didn’t have a copy of the original single’s sleeve from 1987 -- forcing the band to pick up a copy o­n eBay.

LISA LOEB will star in an unscripted series for the E! channel called "#1 Single," that will follow the newly single singer-songwriter as she wades back into the dating pool.

DEL McCOURY gets a good review for The Company We Keep (which came out in July, but better late than never): "Even if o­ne does not especially like bluegrass music, there is nothing about this band that does not cook with hotness."

PETE DOHERTY-KATE MOSS UPDATE: The shamed supermodel Moss wants to reinvent herself as an actress and is asking her film star friends for advice.

TARA REID threatens the Clinton political machine. Surprisingly, the story has nothing to do with Bill. It seems that Chelsea has been hanging with the nip-slipping party girl, much to the chagrin of Sen. Hillary Clinton. A Capitol Hill staffer tells Radar: "All I know is I hear Hillary went nuts. She’s getting ready to run for President and her daughter is hanging out with Hollywood’s biggest mess."

MATTHEW MCCONAUGHEY is officially People magazine's "Sexiest Man Alive," though regular Pate visitors already had the heads-up. The mag has a gallery of hunks for the ladies... and CNN's Anderson Cooper for the gay men (NTTAWWT).

BRITNEY SPEARS' hubby Cletus -- who is supposed to be a professional dancer -- has broken his hand after spinning out of control o­n the dance floor.

ORLANDO BLOOM is being sued by The Firm, his former management agency, for commissions o­n the Pirates of the Caribbean sequels. Bloom jumped ship from The Firm in favor of Brillstein-Grey Entertainment in July.

KEIRA KNIGHTLEY is baffled by reports that romantically linked her to Aussie pop star Kaz James: "I never met him. Never. I o­nly know about him because I've become rather obsessed with it, and I keep looking o­n the Internet." I'm sure her model boyfriend is thrilled to hear that.

SHARON STONE agreed to drop her lawsuit against a plastic surgeon she accused of libelously claiming he'd given her a facelift, in return for his performing free surgery for children with facial deformities.

ANNA NICOLE SMITH goes out to play bingo and goes home with a pretty blonde barmaid in handcuffs. I know that's why I play bingo...

BRADGELINA UPDATE: Jolie has been asked to play seductive Russian agent Vesper Lynd in the next Bond flick,Casino Royale -- but she wants her role toughened up. In the meantime, Pitt and Jolie have reportedly signed a pre-nup in advance of a December wedding. We'll see.

TOM-KAT UPDATE: Radar reports that South Park creators Trey Parker and Matt Stone are a bit nervous about possible blowback from Wednesday night’s episode, "Trapped in the Closet," which targeted Scientology and Tom Cruise — topics previously deemed "off limits" due to the actor’s close ties to Comedy Central’s sister company, Paramount Pictures.

TYRA BANKS and NAOMI CAMPBELL: The supermodels take their catfight from the catwalk to the closed set of Banks' TV show Friday.

DICK CLARK and REGIS PHILBIN will both be dropping their balls o­n New Years' Eve. Put your money o­n Dick; he's got that portrait in the attic.

SILLIEST CELEB QUOTES EVER, excerpted from a book in London's Sun. I dunno... there is stiff competition every day in this category.

MADONNA suspects the US government was "somehow in o­n" the 9/11 attacks?

IRAQ: Gary Sinise, co-founder of Operation Iraqi Children, blasts the media for o­ne-sided, negative reporting o­n Iraq. Jessica Biel, Esquire magazine's Sexiest Woman Alive, has joined Serving Those Who Serve, to adapt the house of a soldier who lost his legs during the war: "Now I see how much these soldiers need to know that we support them, respect them and honour them."

IRAQ II: Operation Steel Curtain continues, netting o­ne of the five senior al Qaeda in Iraq terrorist leaders in the al Qaim region. Bill Roggio also links to a report o­n Provincial Reconstruction Teams, which were used in Afghanistan with great success, now being assembled in Iraq. Kevin Sites writes from Fallujah o­n success stories and problems with the Iraqi Army, which leads some to believe might keep the Iraqi forces from standing up completely o­n their own for as many as five more years. The key word there is "completely." The Counterterrorism Blog sees the failed female suicide bomber as a "treasure trove of intelligence."

FRENCH RIOTS: The government approved a law extending emergency powers by three months, even though number of towns affected by unrest dropped to 79. Olivier Guitta argues that Islamist extremists stand to gain from the o­ngoing violence. French Employment Minister Gerard Larcher argues that polygamy among immigrants is o­ne cause of the rioting. I dunno 'bout that, though I think it's worth asking whether hyper-macho cultures -- especially those lacking paternal discipline -- do seem to breed violence, e.g., our old Wild West, street gangs in our housing projects, or Islamist gangs in French housing projects.

TECH-BLOGGING: The Wall Street Journal's Walter S. Mossberg rounds up his favorite tech blogs.

THE UN-TERNET: At the World Summit o­n the Information Society in Tunisia, negotiators from more than 100 countries agreed to leave the US in charge of the Internet's addressing system. "The Internet lives to innovate for another day," said U.S. Assistant Secretary of Commerce Michael Gallagher.

EDU-BLOGGING: The latest Carnival of Education is o­nline.

KINKAJOU attacks an 82-year-old woman in Pontotoc, Mississippi. The animal, native to the tropical rainforest zone of Central and South America, is often referred to as "night monkey," but is kin to the raccoon. Indeed, it was a kinkajou that attacked the French Hotel last weekend. It's just funnier to write that she got mugged by her monkey.

SPARROW UPDATE: The Dutch animal protection agency is investigating the shooting death of a sparrow that knocked over 23,000 dominoes during an attempt to set a world record. The bird was a common house sparrow -- a species placed o­n the Netherlands' endangered list last year. Meanwhile, the animal worker who shot the sparrow has asked for police protection after receiving death threats.

DUCK with a plastic six-pack holder stuck o­n its head is o­n the loose in Frederick, MD. That's daffy, but the party has to end sometime.

WATCH OUT, BOO-BOO! Hunters eventually could be allowed to kill grizzly bears in and around Yellowstone National Park, now that the population hs increased. Environmental groups are split over the issue. Already, federally protected bison that wander outside the park into Montana may be hunted in an effort to contain the possible spread of brucellosis.

2912 Reads

Art Brut, Laura Veirs, Owls, Armadillos, Puggles, Schnoodles and Labradoodles   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Wednesday, November 16, 2005 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: kbade

Karl

ART BRUT turns Nick Sylvester of the Village Voice: "I truly hated these guys... Four sold-out nights in the New York area later, two of which I attended, Art Brut might be my favorite new act in years." ALSO: Chart Attack digs 'em in Toronto. 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.

WHO CARES ABOUT WHAT'S ON THE FLIP SIDE OF A RECORD? Stylus magazine does! Especially now that digital downloads threaten their very existence.

THE KIDS ARE ALRIGHT... and digging the classics. "Meet the new rock, same as the old rock."

SANDY DENNY is the subject of a streaming feature at NPR.

MARK DAVID CHAPMAN gives an interview, just in time for Dateline NBC to exploit the 25th anniversary of John Lennon's death.

BEST OF 2005: Amazon already has its "Editors' Picks" and "Customers' Favorites" posted in advance of the holiday shopping season. FYI, a quick glance suggests I've written here about 33 of the Editor's Picks... and beaten you over the head with their Number One.

LAURA VEIRS talks to the L.A. Daily News about her new album and her old day jobs, including a stint in rural China. You can stream Year of Meteors from Nonesuch records.

ON THE PITCHFORK: Good reviews for Spurts: The Richard Hell Story and Galaxie 500's Peel Sessions.

MORRISSEY is changing his tune o­n the tone of his upcoming album.

NOEL GALLAGHER of Oasis is not a fan of hip-hop: "I f---ing hate it, all the people that make that kind of music and all the people that buy it..." And that's for starters.

ACROSS THE UNIVERSE is the title of a romantic musical currently in production, featuring music of the Fab Four. You can share the stage as an extra with Bono as he performs "I Am The Walrus"... if you're the high bidder o­n eBay.

SONY COPY-PROTECTION: Sony is pulling their controversial rootkit CDs from stores, but the PC endangering software has already infected at least half a million networks. And the software that Sony is distributing to users who want to remove the rootkit has security flaws of its own!

VAUGHNISTON: Jennifer Aniston ain't no woman! It's a man, man! At least, that's GQ's gimmick. The mag thinks Vince Vaughn is also a "Man of the Year," but not as much of a man as Aniston, apparently.

WALK THE LINE star Joaquin Phoenix - who raised eyebrows at the L.A. premiere by asking a reporter if he had a frog in his hair - apparently couldn't resist more red-carpet shenanigans at the Cash biopic's NYC debut: In response to a question from The New York Times' Campbell Robertson, Phoenix began to gently massage her earlobe, drawing stares and nervous laughter from nearby journalists.

CELEBS are detouched at Worth 1000.

THE FRENCH HOTEL was attacked by her monkey. Too. Many. Punchlines.

TARA REID: You would think that things couldn't get worse for the professional party girl, who goes without acting work after the cancellation of Taradise o­n the E! channel. You would be wrong. At her 30th birthday party, "She wasn’t falling all over the tables like she sometimes does," said o­ne attendee. "It might have something to do with the fact that her mom was sitting there eagle-eyeing her all night."

MOON UNIT ZAPPA tops an o­nline poll of celebrity offspring with the most bizarre names, beating out Gwyneth Paltrow's daughter, Apple and others.

ELISHA CUTHBERT: Former lead singer for Weezer, counter-terrorism agent, porn star (though I think they prefer the term "adult film actress") and now a blogger for the National Hockey League. Is there nothing she can't do?

CHILDREN'S CHRISTMAS LETTERS to... Christopher Walken.

JACKO JUSTICE: In Be Careful Who You Love: Inside the Michael Jackson Case, author Diane Dimond claims that Jacko's child molestation trial should have ended in a mistrial, due to alleged improprieties of juror No. 5, a gray-haired widow named Elanor Cook. But shouldn't the book title be: Stop! The Love You Save May Be Your Own?

ONE NIGHT IN BANGKOK: Get your kicks above the waistline, Sunshine.

THE CAST OF SEINFELD will appear together to promote the DVD release of the sitcom's fifth and sixth seasons o­n Live with Regis & Kelly next week.

LAURIE DAVID, wife of Seinfeld co-creator Larry David, is o­n a crusade to save the planet, but the man who has done more harm to the planet than anybody she can think of is... author Michael Crichton.

KEIRA KNIGHTLEY is in no hurry to grow up: ''I have people telling me I'm a role model. That's the stupidest thing I've ever heard in my life. Don't turn a 20-year-old into a role model because we're going to make mistakes. How could you not? You'd be a freak if you didn't." We also learn she was diagnosed with dyslexia at age 6 1/2.

IRAQ: In sporadic but heavy fighting, Operation Steel Curtain has inflicted serious casualties o­n al Qaeda in Ubaydi and has probably disrupted their supply chain. Several insurgents were captured trying to sneak out of the area by crawling among a flock of sheep. Michael Yon blogs about how wounded Army Sgt. Walt Gaya became a US citizen. The Friday sermon at the Jordanian mosque Abu Musab al-Zarqawi attended as a child was o­n "the criminality of the attacks and how they were not in keeping with Islam." The Z-man is a PR genius.

OIL-FOR-FOOD SCANDAL: The UN reinstated the o­nly official who was fired over the Iraq oil-for-food scandal, after an internal appeals body ruled that he violated staff rules by showing preference to o­ne bidder for an oil-for-food contract but concluded the punishment was too harsh. Glad the UN is cleaning itself up.

BILL CLINTON is "The Most Influential Man in the World," according to Esquire magazine. Since leaving office, Clinton has been so active that his post-presidency amounts to "a third term" for the Democrat who held the White House from 1992 to 2000, the magazine said. So if you blame anyone for anything that you think has gone wrong in this millennium, start with Bill. Yes, I'm kidding -- even if Esquire isn't.

MOTHER NATURE topped the unofficial list of nominees for Time magazine's "Person of the Year" at a panel discussion held by the magazine. Hey, if Jennifer Aniston can be GQ's Man of the Year, why not?

NANOTECH is the real subject of a book titled The Gecko's Foot, which reports o­n labs that practise "bio-inspiration" -- the attempt to develop new technologies explicitly modelled o­n natural phenomena. And the really good news is that I just saved a lot of money o­n auto insurance.

THE WORLD'S BIGGEST OWL is secretly and successfully breeding in England, after centuries of absence.

HOT ARMADILLO-ON-ARMADILLO ACTION o­n David Letterman's desk.

VAMPIRE BAT SALIVA may help reduce stroke damage in humans. (Thanks, Debbie) It's certainly kept me looking young these past few centuries.

DOGS lower anxiety, stress and heart and lung pressure among heart failure patients.

PUGGLES, SCHNOODLES AND LABRADOODLES breed controversy among communities of dog owners.

NEW LEMUR SPECIES will be named after John Cleese as a tribute to Cleese's promotion of the plight of lemurs in the movie Fierce Creatures and documentary Operation Lemur with John Cleese.

2588 Reads

Live In Chicago, BSS, Metric, Walk the Line, and Bird Attacks   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Tuesday, November 15, 2005 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: kbade

Karl

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.

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Steve Earle, Death Cab, Nick Drake, Giant Jellyfish and Squid   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Monday, November 14, 2005 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: kbade

Karl

PATE BIRTHPLACE HIT BY CYCLONES (REAL ONES, NOT ISU CLONES): Tornadoes ripped up farms and destroyed homes in several towns across central Iowa o­n Saturday, killing a woman in Stratford (25 mi NW of Des Moines). Tornado sirens sounded in Ames shortly after 5 p.m. where people were gathering for Iowa State University's football game against Colorado. The stands at Jack Trice Stadium were cleared, with several thousand fans taking shelter at the Bergstrom Indoor Facility, the basement of the Jacobsen Athletic building, Hilton Coliseum, C.Y. Stephens Auditorium and the veterinary medicine building, while others milled under the stands or the parking lot. BTW, the 'Clones ended up upsetting Colorado.

THE ARCTIC MONKEYS: London's Guardian goes on tour with the band, which is still playing tiny venues and trying to play down the hype.

STEVE EARLE talks flyfishing, activism and "no depression" bands with Stuff in New Zealand.

VOXTROT: Like the early Smiths? This band does, if the songs at MySpace are any indication.

DEATH CAB FOR CUITE frontman (and Postal Serviceman) Ben Gibbard gives good interview, though good questions help.

VINYL JUNKIES: The Hartford Courant reports o­n Connecticut shops "that offer sanctuary to fans of vinyl, long after cassettes disappeared without a eulogy."

LEARN TO PLAY GUITAR THE NICK DRAKE WAY with Hanging o­n a Star, an o­nline book detailing his style and techniques.

BORN TO RUN + 30: The 30th-anniversary edition of Bruce Springsteen's Born to Run, with a remastered CD of the album, a "Making of" DVD and a second DVD containing a complete 1975 concert, arrives Tuesday. The reviews suggest that the first DVD has plenty of nuggets, while the the concert is "garage-rock cinema," but compelling.

OTHER NEW BOX SETS are rounded up for review by the San Jose Mercury News.

URIAH HEEP singer (1976-79) pleads guilty to illegally seeking council tax benefits. Sounds like he was stealin' when he should've been buyin'.

SGT. PEPPER'S PARADISE: A mash-up of "Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band" and Guns 'N' Roses' "Paradise City" is so wrong... and yet so right that I can't believe I missed it in September.

GARY GLITTER has reportedly fled his villa in southern Vietnam after local police officials were tipped learned about his past convictions o­n child pornography charges. He was already banned from a popular local night spot for allegedly groping an 18-year-old barmaid.

ISSAC HAYES returns to the Billboard albums chart after 25 years. However, Hayes' South Park song, "Chocolate Salty Balls," hit No. 1 in the U.K. in January 1999.

SPEAKER SPEAKER: You Ain't No Picasso refers us to this nify power pop outfit and their MySpace page. I would start with "Statues Shadows," but they're all pretty good. The band is playing at a Twee Pop festival in Seattle o­n December 10th, for those of you in the area.

JACK WHITE thinks the White Stripes' fans are jaded and spolied because they are too laid back at the live shows. At the risk of sounding like an old curmudgeon, I've noticed these kids today are a bit laid back. But if I wwas Jack White, I wouldn't say it publicly.

SAM COOKE is the subject of a new biography that gets a good review in the New York Daily News.

SONY is yanking the hideous copy-protection software it used o­n a number of CDs, following consumer outcry over the difficuly in removing it and the security hole it opened o­n PCs. Even a Department of Homeland Security official slammed it. It turns out the "rootkit" may also infringe o­n others' copyrights. And Microsoft's next Windows security update will detect and remove the rootkit.

MIXTAPES: Some Japanese dude scanned all of his o­nline.

PETE DOHERTY-KATE MOSS UPDATE: While the Babyshables album gets a surprisingly good review o­n the Pitchfork, troubled singer Doherty believes his passport has been pinched so he can’t meet up with shamed supermodel Moss. Meanwhile, Moss' move to the country is not going down well with the neighbors.

PRIDE AND PREJUDICE cracked the Top Ten at the weekend box office, despite playing o­n o­nly 215 screens. It's gotten largely good reviews and deservedly so. It's not an easy book to condense down to two hours, but Jane Austen would probably deem the result "amiable" at the least. Keira Knightley makes for a charming Elizabeth Bennet (though her face may be a bit too striking for the part); the largely unknown Matthew MacFadyen manages a Mr. Darcy that make o­ne forget -- at least temporarily -- Colin Firth's portrayal in the 1995 BBC miniseries. Indeed, MacFadyen's delivery tended to remind me of Alan Rickman, which is a good thing for a Darcy. Brenda Blethyn and (especially) Donald Sutherland are top-notch as the Bennet parents and Dame Judi Dench was a natural pick for Lady Catherine de Bourg. But time constraints mean most of the supporting roles are relatively small. I also enjoyed that the movie is set in the 1790's (when the book was written), rather than the 1810's (when it was finally published), as it supported the earthier tone of this movie compared to the formality of prior versions. Coming Soon had an interesting interview with Knightley, but you'll have to visit the Daily Mail if you are looking for picture of Knightley's dress falling down at the premiere.

BRUCE WILLIS offering a million bucks to any civilian who turns in terror kingpins Osama bin Laden, Ayman al-Zawahiri or Abu Musab al-Zarqawi. He's also in talks to make a movie about the Deuce Four, the soldiers whose heroic exploits have been chronicled by embedded blogger Michael Yon (a fave of mine) who is headed back to Iraq soon.

GWYNETH PALTROW is becoming a germophobe, according to the ever-reliable Star magazine.

SIENNA MILLER attacks the papparazzi, while Jude Law looks o­n with amusement.

TOM-KAT UPDATE: According to the National Enquirer, movie patrons complained about an annoying sound emanating from Katie Holmes in a Santa Monica theater. Holmes' Scientology minder, Jessica Rodriguez, was reportedly o­n hand to explain that her charge was wearing an electronic transmitter intended to create a soothing environment for whatever is growing inside her.

JESSICA SIMPSON insists the o­nly way to prevent herself from "exploding" with stress is to write her feelings down. She can write?

WALK THE LINE: In a piece ostensibly about Reese Witherspoon, the New York Daily News notes that movie audiences will learn that the story of Johnny Cash is really the story of his love for June Carter.

JESSICA ALBA was reportedly guzzling champagne straight from the bottle at 3 a.m. in an NYC nightclub.

HARRY POTTER AND THE GOBLET OF FIRE currently has nothing but good reviews o­n the Tomatometer, and Quint (a Potter book fan) at Aint-It-Cool-News dug it too.

RUSSELL CROWE had a standoff with wife Danielle in a London restaurant. No phones were reported injured.

SARAH JESSICA PARKER has bought the rights to produce Jessica Cutler's novel "The Washingtonienne" for an HBO series. Culter was fired from her job as a staffer to Sen. Mike DeWine (R-OH) for "misuse of office property," which is to say blogging her tawdry sex life. Someone hotter than Parker should play Cutler.

PRODUCT PLACEMENT: The Writers Guild of America and the Screen Actors Guild are calling for a code of conduct to govern hidden advertising in TV shows and films, and say they will appeal to federal regulators if studios don't respond... by cutting them in o­n the money.

BRADGELINA UPDATE: No doubt that Barbie would prefer the Brad Pitt doll to Ken, but won't it end up running off to be with a Lara Croft Tomb Raider action figure?

PROBLEMS AT THE SAN FRANCISCO CHRONICLE: Allegations of plagarism have been lodged at the dead tree edition, while a web geek got fired for getting wacky with the ALT tags.

IRAQ: A Baathist Web site reported the death of Izzat Ibrahim al-Douri, the most senior Baathist leader still o­n the run (the "King of Clubs" in the infamous deck of cards), now says he is still alive. However, Generalissimo Francisco Franco is still dead. Operation Steel Curtain is clearing Karabilah with light resistance. Operation National Unity has detained 250 suspected rebels in the greater Baghdad area. Operations are also ongoing in Ramadi, with local insurgents turning against al Qaeda. The unprecedented televised confession of an Iraqi woman involved in the Jordanian hotel bombings will further expose AQ's brutality, putting the group o­n the PR defensive throught the Middle East. Milblog ROFASix has an interesting e-mail o­n weapons, equipment and tactics in Iraq. The e-mailer writes that nothing is by any means classified, though I wonder whether CENTCOM would see it that way.

FRENCH RIOTS: o­n Sunday, police in the French city of Lyon used teargas to disperse youths throwing stones and attacking cars in the first rioting in a major city center. The AP reports o­n the role of family breakdown in Frances heavily Muslim ghettos, quickly glossing over this complaint: "France is a democratic country. It gives rights to women and children," said Abderrahman Bouhout, director of the Bilal Mosque in Clichy-Sous-Bois. To be fair, France's child welfare bureacracy may well be intrusive. o­ne of France's leading TV news executives has admitted censoring coverage of the riots for fear of encouraging support for far-right politicians. Meanwhile, about 60 vehicles have been burned in Belgium in the past week, including more than a dozen already over the weekend.

CLIMATE CHANGE: The near doubling in the rate of sea level rise during the 1990s was probably due in part to the delayed effects of the eruption of Mount Pinatubo in the Philippines - and not runaway melting of ice caps.

GIANT JELLYFISH are causing serious damage to the fishing industry off Japan's east coast.

U.S. JELLYFISH accidentally imported to the Caspian Sea are threatening fish stocks and caviar.

SQUID: Researchers love the calamari. Mapping the squid's genetic thumbprint may help solve mysteries like Alzheimer's disease.

BABY PANDA at the San Diego Zoo will be called Su Lin, which means "a little bit of something very cute" in Chinese. Awwww-inspiring photos at the link.

2801 Reads

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