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Okkervil River, Rosebuds, Sloan, Thao & Mirah, Dog B-Day   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Monday, June 06, 2011 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: Karl


GRINDERMAN'S video for "Mickey Mouse and the Goodbye Man" is animated, but nonetheless NSFW.

OKKERVIL RIVER played the World Cafe Live in Philadelphia; you can stream the whole gig on demand.

THE ROSEBUDS are advance streaming Loud Planes Fly Low.

SLOAN stopped by The Current for a chat amd mini-set.

THAO & MIRAH also stopped by The Current for a chat amd mini-set.

JENS LEKMAN played a new track, "Cowboy Boots," on a podcast with comedian Tig Notaro.

THE BOOMTOWN RATS: "I Don't Like Mondays," live at the Secret Policemen's Other Ball.

BON IVER: Justin Vernon gets a visit from the New York Times Magazine in Eau Claire, WI.

EISLEY: Sherri and Stacey DuPree talk to Crawdaddy about their songwriting process and some songs from their new album, The Valley. (Thx, LHB.)

THE RADIO DEPT's Martin Larsson talks to Aquarium Drunkard about Clinging to a Scheme, touring North America, EPs and more...

PETE TOWNSHEND blogs about the Quadrophenai box set, Mick Jagger's junk, and more...

WEEKEND BOX OFFICE: X-Men: First Class is first place with 56 million, a strong start against a 160 million, especially if (like Thor) it does better overseas than in North America (which may not happen for the upcoming Captain America). Tracking numbers had predicted a debut in the mid-40s.  The Hangover, Part II drops a whopping 62 percent to second place with 32.4 million, but already totals 186.9 million against an 80 million budget.  Kung Fu Panda 2 dropped 49 percent to third with 24.3 million, but crossed the 100 million mark (plus another 125 million overseas) against a 150 million budget. Pirates of the Caribbean 4 also took a steep 55 percent drop to No. 4 with 18 million, having raked in 190 million (and another 600 million abroad) against a 250 million budget.  Bridesmaids stays leggy with a mere 27 percent drop to round out the Top 5 with 12.1 million, crossing the 100 million mark against a 32 million budget.

BLAKE LIVELY reportedly would joke about her fake nude photo scandal at the MTV Movie Awards. Girls Gone Wild's Joe Francis does not think the pics are fake. And some think they were intended for Ben Affleck.

THE MTV MOVIE AWARDS, btw, went to these people, by which I mean sparkly vampires.

BRADLEY COOPER & OLIVIA WILDE are "definitely hooking up," a source tells the new Us Weekly.

KIM KARDASHIAN and her fiancé Kris Humphries are hammering out a prenup before they tie the knot.

JESSICA SIMPSON reportedly put a "no cheating" clause in her prenup.

WHITNEY HOUSTON is voluntarily seeking additional treatment for drug and alcohol addiction.

ELLEN BARKIN: The supercougar is living with the 26-year-old son of director Barry Levinson.

RISE OF THE PLANET OF THE APES has a new trailer online (which is also running before X-Men: First Class).

JAMES ARNESS, best known for his role as Marshal Matt Dillon in 'Gunsmoke,' one of the longest-running prime-time series in network TV history, died at 88 of natural causes. He also played the alien monster in the 1951 science-fiction classic "The Thing From Another World" and co-starred in the 1954 sci-fi thriller "Them!" -- two of my Dad's favorite films.

D-DAY occurred on this date in 1944. LIFE has a color photo gallery.

YEMEN: Pres Saleh transferred authority to his deputy Saturday and flew to Saudi Arabia - ostensibly for medical care following a mortar attack -  raising the prospect that a key US ally in the fight against al-Qaeda had lost his grip on power and left behind a nation tumbling into chaos.

PAKISTAN: The US reportedly killed Ilyas Kashmiri, one of al Qaeda's most dangerous military commanders and strategists, in a Predator airstrike Friday in South Waziristan. Sunday, a Pakistani security official said authorities are nearly certain of it.

IRAQ: Tribal leaders say that scores of family members of insurgents have been attacked and killed in recent years as Iraqis turned against Al Qaeda and other militant groups. Insurgents' families have also been driven from their homes and villages, accused of being complicit in their loved ones' crimes or simply guilty by association.

BUNK'S 2ND B-DAY: Let's go to the video.

451 TURTLES IN SUITCASES were seized in Thailand. Shells weren't good enough?


SEVEN MIND-BLOWING VEHICLES built and driven by animals.

QUEENIE, a water-skiing elephant, has died at 58.

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Lovin' Spoonful, Glasvegas, Ivan & Alyosha, Givers, Cutout Bin, Dancing Owl   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Friday, June 03, 2011 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: Karl



...with THE LOVIN' SPOONFUL! The obligatory "Summer in the City" put me in a post-Memorial Day mood, as I had not featured them is some time.  So let's do the other big hits: "Daydream," "Do You Believe in Magic," and "You Didn't Have To Be So Nice."  Also, the band gets some orchestral backing on "Darlin' Be Home Soon," which is lesser-known today, but which reached No. 15 on the Billboard charts in 1967.

GLASVEGAS: James Allen stopped by The Current for a chat and mini-set, including a Queen cover.

IVAN & ALYOSHA stopped by Oregon Public Broadcasting for a session in audio and video.

CAVEMAN did three free songs for Daytrotter (but one of 'em is pretty long).

GIVERS stopped by Morning Becomes Eclectic for a session.

TOM VEK is advance streaming Leisure Seizure.

THE GRAND RAPIDS LIP DUB: I'm reaally not a fan of Don McLean's "American Pie," but credit where credit is due.  Backstory at NPR.

MATT & KIM: The former talks to PopMatters about how the duo came together, their high-energy songs and shows, and more...

ELBOW: Guy Garvey and Pete Turner talk to State about Build A Rocket Boys! and the band's longevity. (Thx, Chromewaves.)

PATRICK WOLF talks to Drowned In Sound about going less confessional and more inspirational.

THE DECLINE AND FALL OF BANDS, according to the National Post.

CUTOUT BIN: From the Beatles to the Bay City Rollers, from Carla Thomas to They Might Be Giants, from John Fogerty to Spinal Tap, plus the Byrds, Replacements, Temptations, T. Rex and more -- this Friday's fortuitous finds are now streaming from the Pate page at the ol' HM.

X-MEN: FIRST CLASS is this weekend's sole wide release, currently scoring 85 percent on the ol' Tomatometer (a bit lower with "Top Critics)... and rightly so.  Matthew Vaughn's direction puts a sharp spin on the 60s backstory of Charles and Erik (Magneto), ably portrayed by James McAvoy and even more ably by Michael Fassbender (tho the antihero/villain role may have something to do with it).  The younger members of the team(s) are fine, albeit given less to do, proportionately.  The script packs about 2 1/2 hours of movie into about 2 hours, so there's plenty of action and character development.  The period setting is appropriate to the original X-Men, and - along with a global scope - allows for some groovy art direction and costuming. Perhaps not as good as the first two Spider-Man flicks or the first Iron Man, but close enough and a worthy companion to the first two installments of the X-Men franchise.

ZOE KRAVITZ & MICHAEL FASSBENDER of X-Men: First Class take their relationship public.

ARNOLD & MARIA: Schwarzenegger met with daughters Christina and Katherine at the Fairmont Miramar hotel in Santa Monica for a pow wow about his impending divorce from the girls' mother, Maria Shriver. TMZ now claims, contra prior reports that there was no DNA test on Arnold's love child to establish paternity.

KIM KARDASHIAN sold her engagement pics for 300 grand.

JENNIFER LOPEZ's first honeymoon tape is the subject of a bidding war.

JENNIFER ANISTON is introducing her new man, actor and screenwriter Justin Theroux, to her close pals.

AMY ADAMS has formally been set to star in Paul Thomas Anderson's untitled film, which begins production later this month.

MARTIN SCORSESE may direct a feature about the romance between Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton.

IRAN: Defense Minister Ahmad Vahidi was forced to leave Bolivia after Argentina attempted to enforce an Interpol warrant for his arrest for his involvement in the 1994 bombing that killed 85 people. Russia's foreign minister said there is "no proof" that Iran is developing nuclear weapons.

SYRIA: Syrian security forces killed 41 people, including children, while shelling and launching sniper attacks on civilians in the town of Rastan.

EGYPT: Post-revolution, the northern Sinai is increasingly lawless.

PAKISTAN and the US are building a joint intelligence team to go after top terrorist suspects inside Pakistan, a fledgling step to restoring trust blown on both sides by the killing of Osama bin Laden by US forces during a secret raid last month.

IRAQ is not ready to stand on its own yet, according to US lawmakers of both parties.

A DANCING OWL: Let's go to the video.

A PACK OF SHARKS came dangerously close to the Long Island shore, closing beaches. What say you, Police Chief Brody?

RATS in an Engine Block.

DINSDALE! Changing garden trends has seen UK hedgehog numbers decline 25 percent over the past 10 years. What can be done to help them?

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TVotR, Cave Singers, Jeremy Messersmith, Cat Shell Game   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Thursday, June 02, 2011 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: Karl


SONDRE LERCHE drops "Private Caller" from his upcoming self-titled LP.

TV ON THE RADIO stopped by the World Cafe for a chat and mini-set.

THE CAVE SINGERS also stopped by the World Cafe for a chat and mini-set.

JEREMY MESSERSMITH did five free songs for Daytrotter.

TOMBS are advance streaming Path of Totality. Metal is not really my genre, but Pate bassist Mike Kelly may dig it.

ANNA CALVI plays "Desire" on QTV.

MY MORNING JACKET: The New York Times covers the band coming full circle on Circuital, along with a 30 minute popcast.

ALELA DIANE talks to Willamette Week about her newly acquired band and her shift toward dusty alt-country and sun-bleached '70s MOR.  (Thx, LHB.)

PULP: Jarvis Cocker told BBC6 he had sleepless nights ahead of Pulp's comeback gigs.

GEORGE CLINTON make a one-off appearance at the British Library in London to speak about science fiction, Afro-futurism and, er, gettin' down.

ARNOLD & MARIA: Schwarzenegger officially hired legal eagle Bob Kaufman, who's already tackling some touchy issues of the seemingly inevitable divorce.

BLAKE LIVELY is threatening to sue any publication which reprints fake photos that claim to be the actress in the nude.

SEAN PENN may be cheating on Scarlett Johansson already.

CHARLIE SHEEN & BROOKE MUELLER hashed out a joint custody agreement.

JUSTIN TIMBERLAKE tells Vanity Fair ex-gf Jessica Biel is "the single-handedly most significant person" in his life, But he may be hooking up with Ashley Olsen.

KIM KARDASHIAN's wedding is on a very fast track, but she denies she's pregnant.

HALLE BERRY: Headed to a TV series?


HAYDEN PANETTIERE... and NY Jets QB Mark Sanchez?

IRAN: Government media said the daughter of a prominent Iranian dissident died of a heart attack while attending her father's funeral Wednesday, but opposition websites said she died in a scuffle with security forces.

OUR FRIENDS, THE SAUDIS are planning to build 16 nuclear reactors by 2030, Arab media reported on Wednesday, citing an official in the country's nuclear agency.

PAKISTAN: As many as 67 percent people of Pakistan want the government take steps for Islamization, a clear indication that for whatever reasons they have lost faith in the existing system.

A CAT learns the shell game.

THE SQUIRREL THREAT: Militant rodents with an appetite for destruction - and aluminum - are at the heart of a dispute between Burbank officials and the owner of a home where appliances have twice been fried because of power surges caused by chomped wires.


A BLACKBIRD rides on the wings of an eagle.

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Sharon Van Etten, F***ed Up, Tommy Stinson, Grizzly Stalker   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Wednesday, June 01, 2011 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: Karl


SHARON VAN ETTEN plays the Fine Young Cannibals hit, "She Drives Me Crazy," for The A.V. Club Undercover.

F***ED UP is advance streaming David Comes to Life, a four-act rock opera.

GIVERS are advance streaming In Light.

TOMMY STINSON stopped by The Current for a chat and mini-set.

THE BASEBALL PROJECT stopped by The Current for a chat and mini-set.

THE LA's: "There She Goes." Again, though I think this is the Pate debut.

MY MORNING JACKET: Jim James talks to Esquire about Circuital, solo projects, side projects, iTunes, and sweating.

THE ANTLERS: Peter Silberman talks Prince, Brooklyn and Burst Apart with Drowned in Sound.

READY, STEADY GO! is celebrated at The Guardian.

COACHELLA 2012 will be two separate events, held over two consecutive weekends. We will attempt to produce two identical festival weekends. That means same lineup, same art, same place, different people.

ANGELINA JOLIE gives an extensive new interview to The Telegraph, about Cleopatra, Liz Taylor, family matters, etc.

ARNOLD & MARIA: Schwarzenegger's baby mama is fuming mad at her own family for selling pictures and stories about her to the tabloids.

LEO DiCAPRIO & BLAKE LIVELY were photographed holding hands during a romantic, moonlit stroll after dinner in Monte Carlo.

PRINCE WILLIAM & KATE: That's Princess Catherine to you.

KEVIN BACON talks to Details about X-Men: First Class, his range of roles, staying out of L.A. and more...

STEVE MARTIN talks to The Guardian about his bluegrass career, while Der Spiegel notes he was swindled in an art forgery scandal.

TWO AND A HALF MEN won't compete for an Emmy.

THE HOBBIT movies get titles and release dates.

THE GIRL WITH THE DRAGON TATTOO releases a red band trailer.

YEMEN: A truce between President Saleh and the Hashed tribal confederation has ended after fighting broke out in Sana'a.

IRAN: Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei publicly backed President Mahmoud Ahmedinejad, putting an end to months of speculation over a rift between the two.

EGYPT: An Egyptian court has fined ousted president Mubarak and two of his former ministers 90 million dollars for shutting down telecommunication services during the country's popular uprising earlier this year. Meanwhile, a senior Egyptian general admits that "virginity checks" were performed on women arrested at a demonstration this spring, the first such admission after previous denials by military authorities.

PAKISTANI intelligence officers continue to offer to support to terrorist groups threatening regional security, according to a diplomatic cable circulated by Hillary Clinton, the US secretary of state.

AFGHANISTAN: Pres Karzai said ISAF will become an "occupying force" if it does not end airstrikes.

IRAQ: Police captured the man who is thought to have killed the head of Iraq's Justice and Accountability Commission. Vice President Adul Abdul Mahdi resigned in protest over the expansion of government.

WHEN A BEAR STALKS, yelling works?

SNAKES ON A TRAIN: Four bags of venomous cobras discovered en route from Ho Chi Minh City to Hanoi in Vietnam.

30 ANTS in her ears?

COWS RUN AMOK on an Ontario highway.

LLAMA POOP helped the ancient Inca build the largest empire ever to exist in the Americas.

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New Releases, Sasquatch, Arctic Monkeys, White Denim, Cat Mom   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Tuesday, May 31, 2011 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: Karl


YEASAYER debuts "Devil and the Deed" on Conan.

NEW RELEASES from My Morning Jacket, The Vaccines, Cults, Black Lips, The Melvins, Robert Pollard and more are streaming this week via Spinner.

SASQUATCH: Stream archived live sets from the fest, including Foo Fighters, Local Natives, Bob Mould, Iron & Wine, Sharon Van Etten, Flaming Lips, Modest Mouse, Wavves, Black Joe Lewis, Old 97s, Guided by Voices, Sharon Jones, The Decemberists, Wilco and many more.

ARCTIC MONKEYS are advance streaming Suck It and See.

WHITE DENIM is advance streaming D. Very groovy.

KAREN O & TRENT REZNOR cover "The Immigrant Song" for The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo.

STRAWBERRY ALARM CLOCK: "Incense and Peppermints" plus "Tomorrow" for Twofer Tuesday.

RAY DAVIES talked to Weekend Edition about making See My Friends, which is full of Kinks and collaborations.

DEATH CAB FOR CUTIE's Ben Gibbard talks to Drowned In Sound about Randy Newman, The Cure and Codes and Keys.

THE 50 BEST ALBUMS of 2011 SO FAR, according to NME.

GIL SCOTT-HERON, the influential poet and musician often credited with being one of the progenitors of hip-hop, and  best known for the spoken-word piece "The Revolution Will Not Be Televised," died Friday afternoon in New York, his book publisher reported. He was 62.

WEEKEND BOX OFFICE: The Hangover, Part II, crushed all competition over the holiday weekend, taking in an estimated 105.8 million (137.4 million since opening Thursday), which should be the biggest live-action comedy opening evah.  It's also close to the biggest R-rated opening ever, potentially edging out The Matrix Reloaded when the actual money is counted. The final Harry Potter movie officially has competition for No. 1 movie of the year.  Kung Fu Panda 2, by contrast, underperformed the original, taking in 68 million since opening Thursday (the original made 60.2 million in 3 days).  Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides drops to third with 50.3 million, about as expected; it has grossed north of 450 million worldwide.  Bridesmaids was a very leggy No. 4 with 21 million (it dropped only 20 percent over the normal weekend) and racks up 89.6 million on a 32 million budget.  Thor rounds out the Top 5 with another 12 million.  Thor's domestic total stands at 162.4 million against a 150 million budget... but that budget is 100 million less than the Pirates and the God of Thunder also took in another 250 million overseas.  Below the fold, Fast Five was No. 6, inching thisclose to the 200 million mark in North America (with another 340 million worldwide).


CHRISTINA AGUILERA was back on the party train as she staggered out of a Hollywood hotspot.

LINDSAY LOHAN, currently under house arrest, settled a lawsuit stemming from a 2007 car chase.

LEO DiCAPRIO & BLAKE LIVELY left the same hotel -- separately -- after they were caught hugging on a yacht during the Cannes Film Festival.

BRAD PITT talked to USA Weekend about marriage, children and what keeps him up at night.

CHRISTOPHER KNIGHT & ADRIANNE CURRY are getting divorced after exactly 5 years of marriage.

PETER FONDA suggested at Cannes that he was encouraging his grandchildren to shoot Pres Obama.

RESERVOIR PONIES: Why do I have to be Mr. Pink?

IRAN is dispatching increasing numbers of trainers and advisers - including members of its elite Quds Force - into Syria to help crush anti-government demonstrations that are threatening to topple Iran's most important ally in the region. Meanwhile, Ahmadinejad's spiritual mentor urged followers to continue suicide attacks against Israelis, including children.

OUR FRIENDS, THE SAUDIS are getting British training in public order enforcement measures and the use of sniper rifles, both of which were used to crush protests in Bahrain.

YEMEN: The Yemeni government ratcheted up its violent response to opponents on two fronts Monday, pounding a major coastal city with airstrikes aimed at dislodging Islamic militants, and smashing the country's largest antigovernment demonstration in overnight clashes that killed more than a dozen protesters, according to witnesses reached by phone.

TUNISIA, birthplace of the Arab Spring, now fears an Islamist insurgence. Funny how that happens.

CAT MOM hugs her kitteh. It's the Citizen Kane of cat videos.

HORSE HERPES OUTBREAK forces rodeo queens to ride stick ponies.

A JUMPING COCKROACH is among the Top 10 new species of 2010.

AUSTRALIA's BURPING COWS are more climate-friendly than thought.

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