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Hoodoo Gurus, Son Volt, Bollywood Beatles, Dr. Dog, Knut Update   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Monday, March 26, 2007 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: kbade

Karl

THE HOODOO GURUS were in my city last night.  Here's my review -- 13 years after their last US tour, they still got it!  David Faulkner's hair was the only thing missing.  It was one of the best Gurus shows I ever saw, which is as good a reason as any to start the week off with vintage live clips of "Like Wow, Wipeout!", "In the Wild" and "Middle of the Land."  Sorry, no live clip of "I Want You Back," which was their thundering set opener Sunday night.  The band ranged over their entire catalog, including "Miss Freelove '69" and "The Right Time."  The opening act was The Goldstars, which is made up of former members of The Service and The Slugs -- two bands familiar to Pate fans.  Saw Gary "Elvis" Schepers on my way out; he was looking much lighter than his old self, but it was good to see him out and about.

CORIN TUCKER, of the late Sleater-Kinney, broke out new songs and choice covers, including Prince's "When U Were Mine", Dusty Springfield's "Son of a Preacher Man", and the Replacements' "Can't Hardly Wait" at a recent benefit gig, raising hopes of a solo album.  Pitchfork will also link you to a video interview she did for the upcoming documentary Rock'n Roll Mamas, which is about exactly what you would think.

THE NORTH MISSISSIPPI ALL-STARS, who incorporate the rich blues tradition of the area from legends like R.L. Burnside and Junior Kimbrough into their rock, played the World Cafe on Friday, so you can stream the gig via NPR now.

THE WATERBOYS frontman Mike Scott writes for London's Guardian about his experience with the Wikipedia,

SON VOLT got an audio review of The Search on NPR's All Things Considered, which includes a little background on frontman Jay Farrar.

BOLLYWOOD BEATLES:  A video to lift your spirits on a Monday Morning... or anytime, really.

DR. DOG co-founder, guitarist and singer Scott McMicken explains to JamBase why The Beatles are underrated.  You can introduce yourself to Dr. Dog's own brand of pop by streaming audio and videos via TheirSpace.

PHIL SPECTOR:  During the break between jury selection and the start of his murder trial, you may want to read the transcript of his tape-recorded statement via The Smoking Gun.  As someone who has read plenty of these, I can tell you that more people should exercise their right to remain silent.  For example, in this case, a jury is not going to like it when Spector refers to the late Lana Clarkson as a "piece of sh*t."

NEKO CASE recently was the guest DJ at the World Cafe, so you can hear her interesting introduction of a gospel song.

SxSW REDUX:  Largehearted Boy has compiled links to downloads and streams of sets from the big Austin music fest.  Some of the downloads, including Land of Talk, The Rosebuds, Bondo de Role and yes, The Pipettes can be streamed via the ol' HM, also.  PLUS:  Garagey blues-rockers The Black Lips talk to the Boston Globe about their SxSW experience.

MAD MEL UPDATE:  While speaking at Cal State University Northridge, Mel Gibson dropped the F-bomb on an expert on Mayan culture who accussed him of racially stereotyping the Mayans in the movie Apocalypto.  He's not apologizing for this one, either.

WEEKEND BOX OFFICE:  It was a good weekend at the movies, which took in $120 million (as opposed to $90 million a year ago).  The weekend was improbably won by Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, which took in over million.  That's less than the original live-action version (after adjusting for inflation), but the Turtles were much bigger with kids then.  300 placed with $20.5 million on a reasonable 37.6% drop.  Shooter debuted in third place with $14,5 million, which is not great, but not bad, given the competition.  Wild Hogs continues to show legs with another $14.3 million on a mere 24.6% drop.  The Last Mimzy debuted in fifth with a $10.2 million take, followed by Premonition's $10.1 million.  The remaining new releases, The Hills Have Eyes 2, Reign O'er Me, and Pride, which brought in $10 million, $8 million and $4 million, respectively.  Dead Silence rounds out the Top Ten.

THE McCARTNEYS:  Sir Paul was spotted getting cozy with drinks heiress Sabrina Guinness, whose previous dates over the years have included Mick Jagger, David Bowie, Bryan Ferry, Jack Nicholson, Michael Douglas and Rod Stewart.

ANNA NICOLE SMITH IS STILL DEAD, and the cause of death is to be officially announced today, but the tabloids are already reporting that she died of a lethal level of a potent sleep medication, but also had a raging blood infection that could have killed her had she not overdosed.  Meanwhile, the late model's diaries have sold at auction for over half a million dollars.

BRITNEY SPEARS was rushed to the hospital last night... for some emergency dentistry.

JOHNNY DEPP is set to resume filming Sweeney Todd today, now that seven-year-old daughter Lily-Rose is recovering from E.coli food poisoning, not a blood infection as previously reported.

BRADGELINA:  Jolie's brother, James Haven Voight, is responding to criticism of Angelina by blaming the bullying and manipulation of their father, Jon Voight, for blighting both their lives and driving his sister to create a huge and independent family.  Yeah, that's him French-kissing his sister.

DENISE RICHARDS & PAM ANDERSON are being sued by paparazzi over that incident where Richards threw their laptop computers over a hotel balcony, allegedly striking "an elderly woman in a wheelchair."

LEO DiCAPRIO and KATE WINSLET are reuniting this summer to film Revolutionary Road, a movie which will be directed by Winslet's husband, British filmmaker Sam Mendes after he finishes a documentary on Rufus Wainwright.  Winslet and Mendes are reportedly moving to the US because of the intrusive British paparazzi.  There are plenty of intrusive photogs in the US also, but maybe they figure those are all busy following the Jolie-Pitts, Tom-Kat and Britney Spears.

DAVID HASSELHOFF is hoping to stage a musical in Vegas:  "I'm leaning toward doing the hottest heterosexual show you've ever seen."

NICOLE RICHIE has recently been diagnosed with hypoglycemia, perhaps while she was at the trout pout shop.

GRINDHOUSE:  As expected, the upcoming Quentin Tarantino-Robert Rodriguez "double-feature" will escape an NC-17 rating by trimming a few of the more outrageous scenes.  It was screened this past weekend.  Hollywood Elsewhere just liked QT's half.  At Aint-It-Cool-News, C.J. Hollywood and the inimitable Neil Cumpston loved, loved, loved it (and it would have been guranteed awful had they not).  Time to watch the new trailer again.

CALVIN & HOBBES is rumored to be coming to the big screen, possibly with voices from Ben Stiller and Owen Wilson.  Which as good a reason as any to link to the C&H searchable database, which brings up strips by keyword.

ISLAMISM in the TWIN CITIES:  At OpinionJournal, Minneapolis Star Tribune columnist Katherine Kersten writes about national Muslim organizations trying to pressure Minnsota Muslims into advancing an agenda that has nothing to do with Islam.

IRAQ and IRAN:  Time magazine has a progress report on the "surge."  The US military now says there's been a "dramatic" decrease in the use of the powerful roadside bombs known as EPPs.  Army Lt. Col. Christopher Garver says the reasons for the marked drop in EFP incidents could include the detention of three Iranians in Baghdad in December.  Actually, there is now an unconfirmed report that US forces now hold some 300 prisoners tied to Iran's intelligence agencies,   Coincidentally, Iran has seized 15 British sailors and may charge them with espionage, as Al-Sharq al-Awsat, a Saudi-owned newspaper based in London, quoted an Iranian military source as saying that the aim was to trade the Royal Marines and sailors for the Iranian Revolutionary Guards detained in Iraq.

KNUT UPDATE:  The cute polar bear cub who survived calls from animal rights activists for his death made his public debut at the Berlin Zoo, and seems set to become a political tool of climate change activists.  Here's your awww...some photos and video.

VICIOUS RATS IN CARS are attacking pedestrians Johannesburg, South Africa.  Fortunately, they have not learned how to drive... yet.

COWS stare unamazed as German scientists invent a pill to cut bovine burping, which may cut greenhouse gas emissions by four percent.

PET HOARDING:  A Santa Cruz couple and their children shared a motel room with 20 domestic birds, a cat and a rabbit. There was one dead bird in a cage and three others stuffed in the freezer.

HUMAN-SHEEP CHIMERA is revealed at the University of Nevada, which is a good excuse to re-link to the trailer for Black Sheep.

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The Lovin' Spoonful, Live REM & Arcade Fire, Cutout Bin, Twirl-A-Squirrel   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Friday, March 23, 2007 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: kbade

Karl

THE WEEKEND STARTS HERE:

...with THE LOVIN' SPOONFUL!  They played "Do You Believe In Magic?" and "You Didn't Have To Be So Nice" live on the Big TNT Show, as evidenced by the fact that they flub their intro.  "Summer In The City" is a lip-sync, but you gotta have it for John Sebastian's quizzical look when the traffic noise comes in.  "Daydream" and "Nashville Cats" bring us into the age of color from a TV show that must remain nameless.  "Fishin' Blues" and "Respoken" rounds out the set.  BONUS:  Interviews with the band from Rock Family Trees, a 1998 doc narrated by legendary British DJ John Peel.  And this being the Pate site, I should mention that years later, Ames music maven Paul Miller was booted out of the Maintenance Shop for heckling John Sebastian.

TED LEO talks about his inclination to protest music and its limited influence with both The A.V. Club and the Georgetown Voice.  You still have the weekend to stream Leo's new album from Spinner.  (Get well soon, Chromewaves!)

THE TANGENTS:  If you're the 14-year-old son of Tim Robbins and Susan Sarandon, Eddie Vedder will jump on stage to jam with you.  Here's seven seconds of "All Along the Watchtower."

GIVE THE DRUMMER SOME:  At PopMatters, Scott Kenemore writes about underrated and overrated rock drummers.  One of the commenters notes that Max Weinberg, Levon Helm, Kenny Aronoff, Charlie Watts, Steve Jordan, and Jim Keltner are all of the opinion that Ringo Starr is not overrated.  Phil Collins is in that camp, too, iirc.  If you are wondering why Ringo might be so highly rated by his peers, this review of Ringo's contributions to The Beatles' catalog is worth a read.  

ART BRUT frontman Eddie Argos gives Pitchfork details on the band's near-completed sophomore album, including that a number of the songs have titles of hits by others, but have nothing to do with those songs. 

THE POOH STICKS used to borrow song titles for their own, too.  The power-poppy "The World Is Turning On" is their own, but you can stream "Sweet Baby James" and "Heroes & Villains" at TheirSpace.  Indeed, their "James" borrows more from Frankie Valli than from James Taylor.

RBALLY has posted an R.E.M. gig from Toronto circa 1983, i.e., the Reckoning tour, and The Arcade Fire in Berlin from August 2005.  You can jukebox 'em via the ol' HM.

PANDA BEAR:  Having overlooked that the Panda Bear album was released this week, I must mention it scored a 9.4 on the Pitchfork.  You can stream a bunch via the ol' HM.

THE DEAD KENNEDYS:  Jello Biafra blasted his ex-bandmates for licensing a DK song to play during a rape scene in the upcoming Grindhouse movie.  They responded by challenging him to donate his share of the money to a women's cause.

FOUNTAINS of WAYNE:  Comedian Demetri Martin will star in the first video from the upcoming Traffic & Weather album.  The Modern Age has some pics.  There is also now an e-card for previewing the album.

THE CUTOUT BIN:  This Friday's fortuitous finds on the ol' HM include: Tom Waits - You Can Never Hold Back Spring; R.E.M. - Begin the Begin (R&R Hall of Fame); The Zippers - He's a Rebel (The Crystals); The Ramones - Judy is a Punk; Pianosaurus - Bubble Gum Music; The Archies - Sugar, Sugar; Nena - 99 Luftbaloons (Deutch); The Pierces - Sticks and Stones; The Be Good Tanyas - When Doves Cry (Prince); Ted Leo - Brass in Pocket (Pretenders); Steve Earle - Goodbye, Guitar Town (live); The Rolling Stones - Dear Doctor; The Jayhawks - Waiting For the Sun; The Standells - Dirty Water; Chris Kenner - Shoo Rah; Wilson Pickett - Land of 1000 Dances; The Hold Steady - Your Little Hoodrat Friend; Journey - Any Way You Want It; Hall & Oates - Rich Girl; and Elton John - Tiny Dancer ("The evening is over. We'll see you all again in 1974.")

BRITNEY SPEARS has obtained an emergency injunction in London's High Court to restrain anyone, who has been leaking information about the pop tart's stint in rehab from further disclosures invading her privacy.  She retains the right to sue anyone over false allegations -- but this order did not require they be false.  TMZ exclusively reports that Fed-Ex will only get about a million bucks in the divorce settlement.  Funny how an exclusive lands in your lap after unskepically airing the story about how well-behaved Spears was in rehab.

NOW SHOWING:  This weekend's wide releases include: New Line's family-fantasy The Last Mimzy, which is currently scoring 50 percent on the ol' Tomatometer; The 3-D animated version of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, which is scoring 17 percent; Mark Wahlberg in Shooter, which is scoring 33 percent (a seemingly rare misstep for him); The Hills Have Eyes 2, whch -- shockingly -- was not screened for critics; Reign O'er Me, which boasts Adam Sandler doing drama, Pearl Jam covering The Who and an impressive 80 percent score; and the inspirational-coach movie Pride, which scores 43 percent.

THE McCARTNEYS:  Sir Paul, ever the Cute One, sent a bouquet of flowers with best wishes to Heather Mills backstage at Dancing With The Stars.

CELEBRITY CONSPIRACY THEORISTS:  Page Six reports that Charlie Sheen has agreed to do narration for the loopy video Loose Change, which claims that a corrupt faction within the federal government orchestrated the mass murder at the WTC.  Rosie O'Donnell's latest 9/11 wackiness is also noted.  The video has a blog devoted to debunking it.

LINDSAY LOHAN'S enabling mother Dina was unceremoniously booted from her scheduled guest spot on The View yesterday after cohost Rosie O'Donnell made clear on air this week that she was no fan of Dina Lohan's parenting skills.  O'Donnell has some fairly insane opinions, but that ain't one of them.

ANNA NICOLE SMITH IS STILL DEAD, but the cause of death is expected to be annouced Monday.

CARMEN ELECTRA, fresh from new denials that she is dating Joan Jett, is set to perform with her burlesque troupe The Bombshell Babes at the Dinah Shore Weekend in Palm Springs, California, at the end of the month -- and rumors persist she'll use the four-day lesbian festival to announce her romance with Jett. Could just be wishful thinking.

RYAN SEACREST'S ex-girlfriend Shana Wall says he's been telling the truth when he says he's not gay.  NTTAWWT.

NET VIDEO:  News Corp. and NBC Universal said on Thursday they will jointly launch an online video site this summer, in a move to compete directly with Google Inc.'s popular YouTube.  The media companies are allying with AOL, MSN and Yahoo! to create an as-yet unnamed site that will feature both clips and full-length movies and TV shows including Heroes, 24, My Name is Earl and The Simpsons.

JENNA JAMESON:  The pr0n queen addresses rumors about her sudden weight loss -- which you can see in SFW pics -- on her MySpace blog.  Having blamed her ex-husband, he chose to respond on his MySpace page, which prompted a reply from Jenna.

TV GUIDE'S SEXIEST LISTS, mentioned here the other day, are scanned at Faded Youth.

SCARLETT JOHANSSON did the necessary photoshoot when she was named Sexiest Woman Alive by Esquire magazine.  Egotastic has the outtakes.

MISS CONDUCT:  As the Tara Conner and Katie Rees stories prove, we -- as citizens of the USA -- really dropped the ball in terms of properly scrutinizing the candidates for the title of Miss USA.  With Conner handing over the tiara tonight, I urge people to review the photos of this year's nominees (there or here) in the hopes of making a sounder, more informed choice.

CARTOON JIHAD:  A French court cleared a satirical weekly newspaper Thursday in a case brought by Muslims who were angered by its publication of caricatures of the Prophet Mohammed.

TERROR in the UK:  Three men have been arrested in connection with the 7/7 suicide bombings in London.  A defendant in the failed 7/21 bomb plot trial told the court that the man behind the plot intended it to be "bigger and better" than 7/7, and wanted to blow up a 12-story apartment building.  Jurors were also shown a film of tests carried out by government scientists  showing the power of the explosives involved; the film can be accessed at the link.  Or you can watch British video from Channel 4 via the Tube.

IRAQ:  At ITM, Mohammed posts about witnessing a bombing of the Finance Ministry, while Omar suggests that Diyala province will soon reject Al Qaeda as is happening in Anbar province.  Talks between the Iraqi gov't and insurgent groups reportedly deadlocked over the lack of a timetable for the withdrawal of US troops.  IraqSlogger has more on the splintering of al-Sadr's Mahdi Army.  Coalition forces in Basra and Hillah captured several members of the Khazali network, an organization directly connected to the kidnapping and murder in January of five American soldiers in Karbala, discovering evidence linking the men to Iran and to an arms smuggling operation that included the high impact Explosively Formed Projectiles.  US military also disclosed that leaders and members of the "Rusafa" car bomb network responsible for "some of the horrific bombings in eastern Baghdad in recent weeks" had also been arrested.  A suicide bomber killed three and wounded 20 on Wednesday when he blew his truck up at the headquarters of a Kurdish party in the northern city of Mosul.

TWIRL-A-SQUIRREL:  I now know what to get my Dad for Father's Day.

ROBOT BIRDS are the latest weapon in the battle against pigeon poop.

GIANT SQUID caught in early February in the Ross Sea off Antarctica may be destined for the microwave oven.

LEGAL LOOPHOLES YOU DON'T WANT TO KNOW ABOUT:  A 20-year-old Wisconsin man received probation after he was convicted of having sexual contact with a dead deer; there had been a question as to whether this was illegal.  A teenager in eastern Sweden has been reported to the police for having sex with a dog in his friend's bathroom.  Swedish law does not expressly ban sex with animals , but the police are considering charges of animal cruelty.

COWS no longer stare unamazed, attack octagenerians in Utah and Florida.

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

Karl

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

SUICIDE SQUIRREL takes down the grid in Midland, TX.

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

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

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

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

Karl

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Karl

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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