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Another Slow Wednesday...   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Thursday, February 18, 2016 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: Karl

Karl...leads to another truant Thursday.  Kanye West's NSFW SNL meltdown is a fun listen, but that's really the only time-senstive item, and the weather is wreaking havoc with my sinuses. I should be back with the usual Friday roundup.

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Ben Folds, Sioux Falls, The Snails, Better Person. Jesper   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Wednesday, February 17, 2016 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: Karl

Karl

JACKSON BROWNE joined the surviving EAGLES at the Grammys for "Take It Easy," a song Browne (mostly) co-wrote with the late Glenn Frey. They may never be here again.

BEN FOLDS plays a Tiny Desk Concert, including "Emaline" and "One Angry Dwarf And 200 Solemn Faces."

SIOUX FALLS advance streams Rot Forever.

THE SNAILS, a Future Islands offshoot, is streaming Songs From The Shoebox.

BETTER PERSON advance streams the It's Only You EP.

MAVIS STAPLES drops "Action," written by tUnE-yArDs’ Merrill Garbus, ahead of Livin' on a High Note.

TANYA DONNELLY drops “Tooraloo,” from her upcoming three-CD set called Swan Song Series.

BRUCE SPRINGSTEEN breaks out a 12-string to cover Jackie DeShannon's "When You Walk in the Room," which was also a hit for The Searchers.

THE REPLACEMENTS book, Trouble Boy, is excerpted at Rolling Stone, with some disturbing details about the late Bob Stinson.

ANIMAL COLLECTIVE talks to Drowned In Sound about  Painting With, a deliberate departure which the band had in mind as they were going into the writing and recording process.

STEVE MASON talks to Drowned In Sound about The Beta Band, amking a living, and modern culture.

NINE CLASSIC INDIE CONCEPT ALBUMS, compiled by Baeble Music (Thx, LHB.)

PAUL McCARTNEY, BECK & FOO FIGHTERS drummer Taylor Hawkins got turned away from a Grammys after-party. There's video: "How VIP do we gotta get? We need another hit."

KANYE WEST threw an epic tantrum behind the scenes of Saturday Night Live and petulantly threatened to walk off the show during its live weekend broadcast.

VANESSA HUDGENS and her boyfriend are under investigation for defacing one of Arizona's most prized treasures.

PEE-WEE's BIG HOLIDAY has a trailer online.

WOLVERINE 3 is hunting for an R-rating after the success of Deadpool.

GEORGE GAYNES, a veteran character actor from Tootsie to the Police Academy movies and scads of TV credits, died on Monday in North Bend, Wash. He was 98. His survivors include another great character actress, wife Allyn Ann McLerie.

PARIS ATTACKS: CIA director John Brennan said that the agency and its allies were aware of covert ISIS activity in the lead up to the attacks in the French capital, however attempts to stop it was foiled by “sophisticated” use of encrypted Internet communication.

UKRAINE: A year-old ceasefire deal has failed to stop violence in Ukraine's separatist eastern territories, and international monitors have voiced concern over increased shelling in recent weeks.

RUSSIA is bombing to pieces the Obama administration's hopes of halting the violence in Syria.

JESPER is an outdoorsy cat.

A PIGLET gives new meaning to the word eyeballs.

MONKEYS photobomb a model with a NSFW performance.

FERAL PARAKEETS invade London.

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Blind Willie Johnson Tribute, Car Seat Headrest, Matthew Logan Vasquez, Cheetahs   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Tuesday, February 16, 2016 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: Karl

Karl

FLEETWOOD MAC FEST featured performances from Courtney Love, Carly Rae Jepsen, Alison Mosshart, Mark Ronson, Perry Farrell, Elvis Perkins, Will Forte, Sarah Silverman, and many more.

BLIND WILLIE JOHNSON gets a tribite LP including tracks from Tom Waits, Lucinda Williams, Cowboy Junkies and more.

CAR SEAT HEADREST plays a Tiny Desk Concert.

MATTHEW LOGAN VASQUEZ of Delta Spirit performs solo in a special World Cafe episode.

MAVIS STAPLES drops "Dedicated," co-written with Bon Iver’s Justin Vernon and M. Ward.

LE SERA drops  “I Need An Angel” ahead of Music For Listening To Music To.

REDD KROSS play "Annie's Gone" and cover The Carpenters' "Yesterday Once More" for Twofer Tuesday.

THE EURYTHMICS: Dave Stewart talks to Weekend Edition about his memoir, Sweet Dreams Are Made of This.

ANIMAL COLLECTIVE talks to Weekend Edition about recording Painting With in one of the studios where the Beach Boys recorded Pet Sounds.

KEVIN MORBY talks to Aquarium Drunkard about songwriting and the upcoming Singing Saw.

VANITY, lead singer of the '80s girl group Vanity 6, has died after years of battling kidney failure and, more recently, an abdominal illness. She was 57.

KATE WINSLET was told "by a drama teacher that if I continued to be overweight I would really only get a chance to play the cute, fat best friend role or the ugly sister parts."

THE GRAMMYS went to these folks, notably The Alabama Shakes and Jason Isbell.

STEPHEN FRY quit Twitter after receiving backlash for joking about Beavan, who won the Bafta for Best Costume Design for Mad Max: Fury Road.

THE DIGITAL DIRT: How TMZ gets the videos and photos that celebrities want to hide.

10 CLOVERFIELD LANE drops a new trailer online.

STAR WARS: EPISODE VIII teased the start of production (spoiler if you haven't seen The Force Awakens).

GERMANY expects 500K refugees to enter the country this year, newspaper Rheinische Post cited sources from the Federal Labor Office as saying.

RUSSIA claims its airstrikes target ISIS in Syria, but the reality on the ground is that hundreds of children, rebels, aid workers, and civilians have been killed.

A LITTER OF CHEETAH CUBS was born at San Diego Zoo Safari Park.

TIGER BREEDING, otoh, not going so well in Sacramento.

BEAR ATTACK, repelled by boot or thumb.

THOUSANDS OF TARDY SHARKS finally arrive at Palm Beach, Florida.

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Lucius, KT Tunstall, The Record Company, Polar Cub   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Monday, February 15, 2016 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: Karl

Karl

OK GO released a zero-gravity video for "Upside Down and Inside Out."

LUCIUS stopped by World Cafe for a chat and mini-set.

KT TUNSTALL pays tribute to Fleetwood Mac on Morning Becomes Eclectic.

THE RECORD COMPANY stopped by World Cafe for a chat and mini-set.

ST VINCENT covers The Rolling Stones' "Emotional Rescue."

BENNY HESTER, best known as a Christian artist, drops "Give Your Love Forever" from his previously unreleased 1972 LP recorded with Elvis Presley's TCB Band.

DAVE GROHL, RHIANNA, STEVIE WONDER & MANY MORE cover Lionel Richie for this year's Musicares concert.

ELTON JOHN accused THE ROLLING STONES of being "irrelevant" for chasing pop success. Um.

BELLY: The making of King.

JULIA HOLTER is profiled by The Guardian.

PRETTY IN PINK; Stereogum revisits the classic John Hughes soundtrack on its 30th anniversary, from the perspective of a Millenial.

WEEKEND BOX OFFICE: Deadpool shattered mutliple records to top the chart with an estimated 135MM, more than double the tracking estimates.The holiday weekend helped, though that's one of the records broken here.  It's also the sixth-biggest Marvel debut, despite (or perhaps due to) its R-rating. That rating likely prompted its small-for-superheroes 58MM budget, which means thisone's already well itno the black on 260MM in worldwide receipts.  Kung Fu Panda 3 places 19.7MM on a mere 7.5 percent drop after dropping 49 percent the prior weekend. The debut of How to Be Single shows with 18.8MM, which seems weak against a 38MM budget, though it won't have much direct competition in the quasi-rom-comedy space until next month.  Zoolander 2 opened in the fourth slotwith 15.7MM, which is about what the original made in its opening weekend with a budget about half of the sequel's reported 50MM; this may falter domestically but is likely to do far better overseas than the original, pushing Ben Stiller and Co. into profit.  The Revenant rounds out the Top Five with 7MM, pretty much what it grossed last weekend; it may still be a few weekends short of profit (but some Oscars will likely do the trick).

DEADPOOL breaks all the rules with glee and lands on target nearly perfectly.  That said, it is not going to be for everyone.  Marvel's first R-rated movie earns that rating at least every few minutes; If Captain America: Winter Soldier was a superhero political thriller, and Guardians of the Galaxy a superhero space opera, Deadpool is a comic book version of a Quentin Tarantino revenge film, filled with gore, profanity, nihilsm, sex ranging from the vanilla to the kinky, and dialog as sharp as the swords strapped to the title character's back. Co-producer Ryan Reynolds gives a star turn as mercenary-turned-mutant Wade Wilson, skewering himself, other superheroes, other movies, and a large number of bad guys, though he's the first to remind you he's not a good guy. The rest of the cast generally perfoms admirably, particularly Morena Baccarin (Firefly, Homeland, Gotham) as the hooker with a heart of gold in Wilson's life (I daresay she will boost home video sales also).  It's an impressive directorial debut for Tim Miller, whose prior experience was in animated shorts and title sequences -- the opening credits here are one of my favorite sequences in years and perfectly set the table for the meal to come. Conversely, this is one of those Marvel movies where you'll want to stay past the end of the credits, for a dessert perfectly in keeping with the meal you you just consumed.

THE BAFTAS went to these folks.

BEN AFFLECK & JENNIFER GARNER spent the Valentine's Day weekend together with their kids.

SPORTS ILLUSTRATED  went with three swimsuit covers this year.

TWIN PEAKS: Ashley Judd joins the revival of David Lynch's cult classic.

ROADIES, the upcoming Showtime series from Cameron Crowe, has a trailer online.

ABRAHAM LINCOLN: I missed the 205th birthday of the 16th President of the United States on Friday. Even if you saw the Spielberg biopic, here are two things you may not have known about Honest Abe: (1) he was an early adopter of the telegraph; and (2) he once sported a punky haircut

GEORGE WASHINGTON: Though now lumped in with everyone for Presidents' Day, Feb 22nd is the birthday of the "Father of his Country."  In 1776, David McCullough notes that when Washington took command in July 1775, he thought he would be home at Mount Vernon by Christmas. McCullough catalogs Washington's blunders -- many of them nearly fatal to the Cause -- but concludes: "He was not a brilliant strategist or tactician, nor a gifted orator, not an intellectual... He had made serious mistakes in judgment. But experience had been his great teacher from boyhood... and above all, Washington never forgot what was at stake, and he never gave up." That, as much as anything, is why Washington is usually ranked among the greatest of US presidents. not to mention the subject of a profane, animated rap cartoon.

A POLAR CUB in Toronto is introduced to snow.

A HORNY, REJECTED ELEPHANT rampaged on a highway in southern China.

TORTOISES upstaged a New York Fashion Week show.

IS THAT A TROUT IN YOUR PANTS, or are you just...oh.

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Valentine's Weekend, Pinegrove, Wolfmother, Birds of Chicago, Leopard   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Friday, February 12, 2016 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: Karl

THE WEEKEND STARTS HERE:

...with VALENTINE'S DAY: I've never been a big Valentine's Day guy, but I have always liked The Replacements' "Valentine" and Elvis Costello's cover of "My Funny Valentine."  Beyond that, my thoughts typically drift to the Velvet Underground's "I'll Be Your Mirror," The Beatles' "In My Life," and the Beach Boys' "God Only Knows." I think it's probably very difficult to write a straight-ahead, universal love song, and these three are great.

PINEGROVE is streaming Cardinal.

WOLFMOTHER advance streams Victorious.

BIRDS OF CHICAGO advance stream Real Midnight.

SAM BEAM & JESCA HOOP drop “Every Songbird Says” ahead of Love Letter For Fire.

BRITTA PHILLIPS (Luna, Dean & Britta) drops an Evie Sands cover, “One Fine Summer Morning", ahead of her solo LP, Luck Or Magic.

STURGILL SIMPSON drops "Sugar Daddy," the theme for the HBO/Scorsese/Jagger series Vinyl.

THE OPPOSING VIEW:  Ever Fallen In Love? Love Stinks. Love Hurts. Love Will Tear Us Apart. Only Love Can Break Your Heart. And don't forget to give me back my black t-shirt (nsfw)!

BRUCE SPRINGSTEEN will publish his memoir, Born To Run,in September.

LAKE STREET DIVE talks to Rolling Stone about inspiration from The Zombies and David Bowie, and getting signed to Nonesuch Records.

GIANT SAND is breaking up after 30 eclectic years. The story includes a few tracks from their upcoming retrospective box set.

IN DEFENSE OF THE CD: Are we being too quick to toss out an old friend?

ANTON BARBEAU, a former collaborator of the late Scott Miller (Game Theory, The Loud Family), is doing a West Coast tour, if you're out that way.

NOW SHOWING: This weeeknd's wide releases include Deadpool, which is currently scoring 83 percent on the ol' Tomatometer; How to Be Single, which is scoring 43 percent; and Zoolander 2, scoring 34 percent.

RYAN REYNOLDS talks to People about country life with wife Blake Lively and raising their little girl, James. It's an homage to When Harry Met Sally, really.

MILEY CYRUS bought a house to share with Liam Hemsworth; he's yet to move in.

BATMAN v SUPERMAN has an official final trailer online.

JASON BOURNE has a teaser trailer online.

HARRY POTTER & THE CURSED CHILD PARTS I & II: The script of the theatrical production will be published in book form, of course.

THE GILMORE GIRLS: Jared Padalecki and David Sutcliffe will return for the Netflix mini-revival.

THE BEST ROMANTIC COMEDIES, from A to Z, according to The A.V. Club.

IRAN will unveil an upgrade of its Emad ballistic missiles this year, the defense minister was quoted as saying, advancing a program that has drawn criticism from the United Nations and sanctions from the United States.

A LEOPARD entered a school in Bangalore, India – mauling six and leading to a ten-hour long standoff between the large cat and wildlife officers.

SPIDER vs SNAKE: Who you got? And which has whay it takes to love you?

CAT BURGLAR Burgles Cat.

THUMB-SIZED MONKETS: Adorable and illegally purchased by China's wealthiest.

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