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Buzzcocks, Isobel Campbell, ABBA, Michigan J. Frog and Lassie   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Wednesday, January 25, 2006 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: kbade

Karl

BROKEN SOCIAL SCENE: Kevin Drew is inteviewed in his bathtub about the pros and cons of the digitial age, sometime-bandmate Leslie Feist ("the hardest working person in show business"), America and the influence of Pitchfork.

BUZZCOCKS have a new album coming o­n March 7th, but you can stream the single now.

SILVER JEWS: Pollstar asks David Berman about his decision to launch the band's first-ever tour.

MISSION OF BURMA has a new studio album, The Obliterati, coming out May 9th.

THE KAISER CHIEFS got a record six nominations for the NME awards, but will Arctic Monkeys make off with the biggest trophies?

ARCTIC MONKEYS: Whatever People Say I Am, That’s What I’m Not became the fastest-selling debut by a rock band ever in the UK. London's Independent asks artists, commentators and a Labour MP about the phenomenon, including Alan Sillitoe, the author of Saturday Night and Sunday Morning, which gave the album its title (through the Albert Finney movie adaptation). While waiting for the album you can see the "When the Sun Goes Down" video in glorious Quicktime.

ISOBELL CAMPBELL and MARK LANEGAN: Brooklyn Vegan hooks you up with the video for their cover of Hank Williams' "Ramblin' Man" and notes that Eugene Kelly -- member of the legendary Vaselines, Eugenius and Captain America -- will fill in for Lanegan o­n the tour. You Ain't No Picasso has a legit download of "Deus Ibi Ist." These two tracks suggest Campbell was right in calling Lanegan "her Lee Hazelwood."

ECHO AND THE BUNNYMEN is o­ne of the bands with a recent streamable set at KEXP.

WE ARE SCIENTISTS: Rachael blogs the more flippant answers from her interview of the band for Underrated magazine, which ends with an electrical fire during the band's set at Maxwell's in Hoboken.

ABBA has gained a hold o­n the imagination of today’s youth. Stylus examines why.

THE CELESTIAL JUKEBOX: Subscription music services from Yahoo and RealNetworks are hoping that playlist makers like Robert Berke of scopecreep will help the subscription model battle Apple's iTunes purchase-only business model.

JOSE GONZALES: The Argentinian-Swedish singer-songwriter talks to Le Blogotheque about his sudden media exposure and influences from Nick Drake to electronica.

KANYE WEST has a new feud brewing with America's Catholic League after posing as the wounded Jesus Christ o­n the cover of the upcoming issue of Rolling Stone. A Catholic League spokeswoman says, "It's moronic. I mean, Kanye West as Jesus? He's a pop star." West insists he has a lot in common with Christ because he has to fight for recognition and suffer for success. He doesn't mention that the reason record companies put him aside was that he was born into a privileged family and was not a former "street hustler." As for suffering, most guys wouldn't compare fondling Pam Anderson's butt to being scourged.

FIVE VOICES YOU SHOULD HEAR, according to Time magazine. And it's not lame.

JANETTE CARTER, the last surviving child of country music pioneers A.P. and Sara Carter, and -- through the Carter Family Fold -- a preserver of not o­nly old-time country music, but also the history of the Appalachian way of life, died at 82 years old.

MORRISSEY, who publicly backed violent attacks o­n scientists and companies involved in animal testing, has been condemned by Huntingdon Life Sciences: "People can have whatever opinions they want, but to condone and encourage acts of violence is entirely wrong and should not be allowed in democracy."

100 OVERLOOKED ALBUMS: Red magazine lists masterpieces that didn't make Rolling Stone's alleged top 500 albums of all time. o­ne of the "overlooked" albums is Live Evil by Miles Davis, but that may be because The Cellar Door Sessions box wasn't out yet.

PETE DOHERTY-KATE MOSS UPDATE: The troubled singer's band, Babyshambles was joined by former guitarist Pat Walden in Cambridge. The supposedly sober supermodel has inked a two million dollar deal for a tell-all autobiography.

TOM-KAT UPDATE: "Havin' My (Alien) Baby," courtesy of e-greetings. I hope that's a narrow demographic. The mysterious disappearance of a steamy sex scene between Katie Holmes and Aaron Eckhart from the Sundance screening of Thank You for Smoking had people suspecting more Cruise wackiness, but the director claimed it was a "technical glitch."

LOVE MONKEY: So, how 'bout that Ben Folds cameo last night? Nice but Ben needs to keep his day job. The New York Times examines how realisitically music A & R reps are depicted o­n the show.

MICHIGAN J. FROG is getting a pink slip, as the WB merges with UPN to form CW.  Sure, the Frog had been rumored to be dead in July 2005, but that was just a cover story.

MADONNA rubbishes rumors of marital woes with director Guy Ritchie and making diva demands for her upcoming tour, such as a private jet for her family and entourage, which includes her kabbalah teachers, a personal chef and a masseuse.

DISNEY IS BUYING PIXAR Animation Studios Inc. for 7.4 billion bucks in a deal that could restore Disney's clout in animation while vaulting Pixar CEO Steve Jobs into a powerful role at the media conglomerate. To infinity, and beyond!

BRADGELINA: George Clooney mocks Pitt. Rumors of a Valentine's Day wedding continue to circulate. Jolie headlines coverage of the World Economic Forum starting today in Davros. After all, she is much hotter than Germany's new Chancellor, Angela Merkel. Jolie's bump was snapped as the couple and the Jolie-Pitts made their way through Heathrow en route to Davros. The tattoo is Latin for "What Nourishes Me Also Destroys Me" -- exactly the message the infant(s) need to see upon exiting the womb.

MEG RYAN: Now that Jolie is having her own kid(s), Ryan is picking up the slack by adopting a baby girl from China.

VAUGNISTON are shacking up in Aniston's L.A. home. Of course, this week, Aniston is at Sundance, freaking over the paparazzi.

THE OSCARS will start even earlier this year. The Academy must have given up o­n the idea of trying to stop the actors from blathering.

SHOCK for JOCKS: Sirius satellite radio execs are developing standards-and-practices to set boundaries for Howard Stern and other shock jocks. Meet the new boss, same as the old boss. Meanwhile, Stern's NYC successor, David Lee Roth is slammed as "impossible to work with. A real arrogant, self-righteous a--."

JESSICA ALBA poses for photographers, while Matthew Broderick will later get the frying pan from Sarah Jessica Parker.

LOST: Ex-hobbit Dominic Monaghan is hush-hush about his private life, especially his rumored proposal to co-star Evangeline Lilly. But he will tell you of his love for Scrabble. Publicly, all we know is that they and the rest of the cast just got big raises.

IRAQ: Iraqis and Afghans are [among the] most optimistic people in the world when it comes to their economic future, in a new survey for the BBC. The pollsters venture the guess that war may have created a "year zero" experience of collectively starting again, but socialist blogger Norm Geras has other theories. At Iraq the Model, Omar notes that the 25 percent female quota for parliament may be tough to meet and links to an unlikely scenario in which the Sunni Arab parties form the government. Bill Roggio has more o­n the split between Iraqi insurgets and al Qaeda. L.A. Times columnist (and Time contributor) Joel Stein doesn't support the troops and thinks that "being against the war and saying you support the troops is o­ne of the wussiest positions the pacifists have ever taken." Stein is apparently not kidding when he writes that he is "desperate for attention."

IRAN: At least six people were killed and 40 injured in two blasts in the south-western Iranian city of Ahwaz. President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad had been due to give a speech at a religious center nearby, but a spokesman did not believe the bombs were linked to the planned visit. This despite the fact that one of Ahmadinejad's bodyguards was killed and another wounded in an attempted ambush of the presidential motorcade in December.

MEN ARE FROM MARS: Boys are kinetic, maddening and failing at school, creating a widening a chievement gap. Throughout elementary, middle and high school, girls earn higher grades than boys in all major subjects, including math and science, but men enjoy greater professional success. More women value friendship and cuddling to sex, though they don't mind having more sex when their men ask.

CULT OF THE iPod: Traffic to iTunes has more than tripled over the past year, with users more likely to be younger males, disposed towards brands like Volkswagen, Audi, Subaru, Wired, Rolling Stone, and FHM, Cartoon Network, BBC America, and HBO. And you can now get Valentine's Day lingerie for your iPod or Mini.

PENGUIN JOY ERUPTS as the parents of a baby penguin, whose theft from a British zoo just before Christmas attracted worldwide attention, produce a new egg.

ORANGUTAN POOP not o­nly reveals why King Louie is no longer the King of the Jungle, but also supports a genetic theory that could in future be used to provide early warning of the decline of any species.

WHALE VOMIT is big money -- 32 pounds netting almost 300K.

FLAMINGOS LOCKED UP at a German zoo to stop them from ice skating.

WHAT'S THAT LASSIE? Woof! Woof, woof-woof! George has been thrown from his horse and can't get up? Woof! Let's get him!

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Scott McCaughey, Rush, FoW, Secret Asian Pandas and a First Class Hamster   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Tuesday, January 24, 2006 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: kbade

Karl

SCOTT McCAUGHEY: His current supergroup, The Minus 5, has a new album coming o­n February 7th... and a tour. (After Scott finishes playing a UK tour with with Robyn Hitchcock -- and Kimberley Rew in Cambridge.) There's media available at the first link in addition to the MP3 of "Twilight Distillery." EXTRA COOL: There are downloads of the Young Fresh Fellows, McCaughey with Robyn Hitchcock, and much, much more at Universal Trendsetter, including a Quicktime video of "The Young Fresh Fellows Theme" from Fabulous Sounds of the Pacific Northwest.

ROBERT POLLARD: His first post-GbV musical album, From A Compound Eye, drops today, so he's been doing interviews with the Dayton Daily Herald and the Chicago Tribune, where he tells Greg Kot about being in college listening to Devo and Genesis at the same time... which explains a lot.

JENNY LEWIS and BLAKE SENNETT (as part of the Elected) of Rilo Kiley have their side projects dropping today also. Frank at Chromewaves clebrates by posting a Rilo Kiley cover of Bowie's "Rock'N'Roll Suicide."

OTHER NEW RELEASES include Ace Frehley: Greatest Hits Live.

LITTLE HITS: The Pitch profiles the Lawrence, KS-based music blog focused o­n obscure indie-pop artists from the 80's, though blogger Jon Harrison also declares his love of the sound of '60's singles.

THE POSTAL SERVICE: Ben Gibbard is more than annoyed that Apple's new TV commercial for the Intel chip features a shot-for-shot recreation of their video for "Such Great Heights," made by the same filmmakers responsible for the original.

COLIN MELOY talks about literary influences and his first band, Tarkio, with The Stranger in connection with the release of Omnibus, the new double-disc Tarkio compilation. You Ain't No Picasso is killing music with Meloy covers of Big Star and Shirley Collins.

RAY DAVIES claims that Queen Elizabeth II wants to get medieval o­n the mugger who shot the Kinks frontman in New Orleans.

HARD-FI frontman Richard Archer is surprised the band's album hit #1 in the UK, even though he wants to reach people beyond music geeks.

RUSH: Geddy Lee and Neil Peart have joined Alex Lifeson's lawsuit alleging the band suffered financial damages because of Lifeson's injuries, arrest and criminal case stemming from a New Year's Eve fight in Naples, FL.

ISOBEL CAMPBELL and MARK LANEGAN: Campbell talks to the Scotsman about the difficulty of recording with Lanegan, given his busy tour schedule: "I said to [Belle & Sebastian bassist] Bobby Kildea, 'I think I've found my Lee Hazlewood, but I think I might have lost him again.' But I would never expect to tie him down or anything."

FOUNTAINS OF WAYNE started work o­n their next album at Bearsville Studios, near Woodstock in upstate New York. That's where the dB's recorded Like This, so let's hope the musical good luck outweighs the business bad luck.

TOM-KAT UPDATE: Amber Taylor alerted me to a MeFi post noting that Cruise has o­nly three incisors -- which may suggest a holoprosencephaly syndrome that affects his ability to father a child. There are other theories mentioned there that won't be repeated here for legal reasons, natch.

LOVE MONKEY: Though the new CBS dramedy about an indie A&R man will inflict LeAnn Rimes o­n us tonight, there is the promise of Ben Folds, Aimee Mann, She Wants Revenge and Si Se.

FRIENDS: Rumors of a reunion are greatly exaggerated, according to NBC Universal chief Jeff Zucker. They won't be there for you.

JESSICA SIMPSON thinks she has "amazing boobs" -- so does hercreepy father. The ever-reliable National Enquirer has Nick and Jessica hugging outside Simpson family's Encino pad.

KATE MOSS has spent the last two weeks making arrangements to speak with British police investigating allegations of cocaine use, though no timetable for her appearance has been set, says her spokesman, Stuart Higgins. The timing of this announcement has nothing to do with weekend reports that the cops believe she is acting like a fugitive.

DREW BARRYMORE admits she is drawn to lovers who inspire her. Like The Strokes' drummer Fabrizio Moretti, who inspired her to do it in the womens' bathroom of a NYC opera house in the middle of La Boheme.

SIENNA MILLER and JUDE LAW: London's Mirror claims Law is moving back in with his ex-wife Sadie Frost. E! gossip Ted Casablanca claims Miller dumped Law for her Factory Girl co-star Hayden Christensen: "It's all about opportunity," said a source. "She's just moving o­n to who's going to give her more publicity. Jude can't do that anymore." RELATED: Lou Reed, who knew Edie Sedgwick and Andy Warhol (obvs.) has an opinion o­n Factory Girl director George Hickenlooper and his cast: "They're all a bunch of whores." So Reed couldn't stop Hickenlooper from licensing his song? PLUS: Just Jared has Factory Girl photos, including Guy Pearce as Andy Warhol and the horror of Hayden Christensen as a fictionalized Bob Dylan.

WALK THE LINE: Rosanne Cash is not a fan of the movie or some of her late father's less-thoughtful fans.

MADONNA: Are Madge and hubby Guy Ritchie splitsville?

PORN STAR NAMES: New York Daily News gossip Ben Widdecombe asked actual porn stars to play the party game whereby people work out their "porn star name" by combining the name of their first pet with the street o­n which they grew up. Savanna Samson says hers would be "Frisky Clinton." But I'm pretty sure that name was already taken.

DIANE KEATON writes that she used to love the music of Judy Garland, but that "if you keep singing like that, singing songs of being victimized by love over and over and over again, it can't help but have a profound effect o­n your life. At a certain point, you're programming yourself to become a victim of love." Ah, yes... the eternal question: "What came first, the music or the misery?

NICOLE KIDMAN and KEITH URBAN still enjoy a close relationship, contrary to other press accounts noted here yesterday. Or not.

SCARLETT JOHANSSON is now publicly beyond furious at designer-turned-E!-red-carpet interviewer Isaac Mizrahi for groping her at the Golden Globes. She said to friends, "If he hadn't been gay, I would have slapped him."

IRAQ: At Iraq the Model, Mohammed suggests that it will take months to form a new government, and notes that six Iraqi militant groups announced that they will unite and join the residents of Anbar and Salahiddin in fighting al Qaeda. Local insurgents in Ramadi also have turned against al Qaeda. Senior US military officers based in Anbar suspect that al Qaeda supporters won seats in provincial assemblies. And the McPaper leads a story by reporting that "The number of attacks against coalition troops, Iraqi security forces and civilians increased 29% last year," leaving the facts that US fatalities were flat, the number of wounded US troops dropped 26%, and that the percentage of successful attacks against US forces dropped from 25-30% to 10% for the end.

CANADA: The opposition Conservatives were heading for a narrow victory in Monday's national election, ending 12 years of Liberal rule, major television networks said. Support for the Liberals had slipped amid voter fatigue and a major kickback scandal which brought down the minority government of Prime Minister Paul Martin in November. Regular visitors to this site could have seen this coming since last April.

NSA SURVEILLANCE: The Washington Post has a problem with the Administration's detailed legal justification for the NSA's warrantless international surveillance program. Power Line notes a flaw in the WaPo editorial. General Michael Hayden, who left the NSA last spring to become deputy director of national intelligence, defended the program, noting that he went beyond the White House and Justice Department legal justifications and also sought the opinions of the NSA's top lawyers, who supported the program. Gen. Hayden's speech and Q & A session at the National Press Club is downloadable as an Acrobat file.

FIRST CLASS HAMSTER: Two Cambridge students who sent a hamster through the post as a drunken prank have been fined and banned from owning animals. If "First Class" hadn't gnawed through the envelope and been spotted by the postman, he might have died in the sorting machine. The hamster is now living happily with a member of staff at the Clarendon Street veterinary practice where she was treated after she was found.

CHINESE PANDAS offered to Taiwan as a goodwill gesture are studying the island's local dialect to get better accustomed to their new home. I dunno... the pandas are known o­nly by their numbers, 16 and 19. Sounds like secret agents to me.

HOT COW clambered into a neighbour's garden and jumped in a swimming pool during a heatwave in Brazil.

BOCEPHALUS THE CAMEL made a daring escape from a moving trailer in central Illinois. He was recaptured with o­nly bruises and scratches.

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Jenny Lewis, Laura Cantrell, Monkeys and Little Pink Dolphins for you and me   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Monday, January 23, 2006 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: kbade

Karl

GARY "ELVIS" SCHEPERS UPDATE: Pate frontman Jon Pratt and wife Naomi drove 14 hours and endured a Chicago snowstorm to attend o­ne of the week-long series of benefit concerts featuring a veritable who's who of Chicago music scheduled to help defray Schepers' unwieldy medical costs following an attack from "flesh-eating bacteria" and a diagnosisof Type 2 diabetes. The Chicago Tribune also has a video feature o­n the artists and bands involved in the effort, with Scheper's phoned comment, "They're doing the cool thing. I'm just lying here with a hose in my foot." The New Duncan Imperials put o­n a fine show and sold Service vinyl for Gary, with whom they played in The Service. NDI also dedicated "Pensacola 99" to Jon and Naomi.

The Gary Schepers Trust has been set up at National City Bank. Donations for Schepers, made payable to "Gary Schepers Trust," can be made at any National City branch location or mailed to: National City Bank, 1520 N. Damen Ave., Chicago IL, 60622

Saturday, the Pratts visited Millenium Park, as Jon was keen to see the Frank Gehry-designed Jay Pritzker Pavilion and BP bridge. If you haven't been to the park, you might want to check out the interesting photos at Flickr, along with clustery goodness. It was wonderful to catch up with the Pratts, whom I hope will stop by to see the park again in warmer weather.

JENNY LEWIS of Rilo Kiley has her Americana-styled solo album, Rabbit Fur Coat out tomorrow. It's "consistently clever," according to the Philadelphia Inquirer, which also gives Cat Power's The Greatest a boffo write-up in an article using Dusty In Memphis as a touchstone. Lewis is interviewed by the San Francisco Chronicle, London's Independent and SPIN. You can stream two from the album at MySpace.

ROGER McGUINN, former leader of the Byrds, talks to the Bradenton Herald about the Folk Den McGuinn's music blog, through which he wants to preserve and perhaps popularize traditional folk music. McGuinn also hand-picked three downloads as a sampler.

BRITISH FOLK: London's Observer has an overview of the growing scene, along with a recommendation to watch A Mighty Wind.

BELLE & SEBASTIAN: Stuart Murdoch talks to Drowned in Sound about the increased role of the other members in writing and arranging the upcoming album, The Life Pursuit.

ISOBEL CAMPBELL: The former member of Belle & Sebastian has her list of music you should hear at Amazon, with bonus recommendations and some from new collaborator Mark Lanegan (ex-Queens of the Stone Age and Screaming Trees).

DEERHOOF drummer Greg Saunier insists that his experimental indie rock band is commercial because ''everything I do is for sale." The Boston Globe reports that the band may not be mersh yet, but is trying to become more accessible.

LAURA CANTRELL plays and meets THE BOSS: Beware of the Blog has Quicktime video of Cantrell playing "Used Cars" at the Nebraska tribute show and Springsteen joining Cantrell, The National, ex-Del Fuego Dan Zanes and more playing some Woody Guthrie's "Oklahoma Hills."

THE NATIONAL also played live for WOXY in September. So Much Silence is killing music.

NELLIE McKAY still seems a little miffed about her break-up with Columbia/Sony. The good news is that McKay and her mother/manager put up the money for her album's recording, which should make regaining rights to its 23 songs less problematic. There's talk about an initial Internet-only release and CDs in February or March.

THE ARCTIC MONKEYS top the UK charts for a second time with their latest single, "When the Sun Goes Down," beating out singles from: Notorious BIG, Diddy and Nelly; Will Young; and Beyonce. Heh. ALSO COOL: Hard-Fi and Editors took numbers o­ne and two respectively in the UK album charts. Stereogum has more o­n Editors.

BON JOVI discovers that Slippery When Wet is a better name for an album than for the condition of an airport runway. And Jon insists that working in the music business meant it was inevitable he would cheat o­n his wife.

WILSON PICKETT: There are two more audio pieces o­n the wicked Pickett up at NPR.

PETE DOHERTY-KATE MOSS UPDATE: Model Jessie Leonard learned that her live-in lover Jamie Burke was having an affair with supposedly sober supermodel Moss from a television newsflash. Frustrated detectives waiting to question Moss in London about cocaine believe she has started behaving like a "fugitive" and may cuff her if she returns to England. British cops recently questioned former Clash guitarist Mick Jones in the matter. Meanwhile, troubled singer Doherty again pleaded guilty to possession of heroin, crack cocaine, morphine and cannabis. That was just a few hours after he started a donnybrook at a London gig.

BRADGELINA: Jolie is rumored to be expecting twins as the result of fertility treatments, according to the ever-reliable Sun. With Jolie, o­ne wonders whether "fertility treatments" refers to something medical or supernatural. Meanwhile, Maddox and Zahara are officially Jolie-Pitts. And Wyclef Jean thought the pair would be the target of a kidnapping plot during their recent trip to Haiti.

NARNIA RAP REDUX: "Lazy Sunday," the viral hit from Saturday Night Live (also viewble through sites like YouTube) is covered by a nine- and seven-year-old duo. And Andy Samberg loves it. BONUS: YouTube also has the follow-up video from Samberg, "Young Chuck Norris." Not quite as good, but pretty funny, especially as I featured the Chuck Norris Random Fact Generator o­n Friday.

WEEKEND BOX OFFICE: The heavily panned Underworld: Evolution tops the box office, followed by Hoodwinked and Glory Road. End of the Spear opened in eighth place, though its low budget means it may not be a loss. Brokeback Mountain moved up to fifth from ninth as it expanded to almost 1,200 screens.

BUBBLE: Steven Soderbergh's small film will be in theaters and o­n high-definition cable this Friday; a few days later, it also will be released o­n DVD. This is riling both independent movie houses and major studios, which makes it extra-cool that the soundtrack is by Robert Pollard.

THE WORLD'S BEST-PAID YOUNG CELEBS: Courtesy of Forbes magazine, natch.

DAVID HASSELHOFF blames his divorce o­n that ol' demon rum.

SCARLETT JOHANSSON says, "It's hard for actors to date each other, because they can be so damn moody." This following her skepticism of monogomy, cannot be good news for Josh Hartnett. Woody Allen thinks Scarlett should dress younger. Why am I not surprised?

ISSAC MIZRAHI, the fashion designer-turned-interviewer who groped Scarlett o­n the red carpet at the Golden Globes, is warned against a repeat of his outrageous behavior at the Oscars, even though the E! channel has not received any official complaints from any of the actresses involved in Mizrahi’s Golden Globes appearance.

NAPOLEON DYNAMITE star Jon Heder has scored a production deal for live action and animated projects. Sweet.

TOM-KAT UPDATE: The decrease in Cruise's popularity due to his wackiness is bringing out previously silent critics. Emanuelle Beart now complains that Cruise insisted her character in the first Mission Impossible movie be o­ne-dimensional, lest the audience not like his character as much. Former nanny Suzanne Hansen says Cruise made his nannies sign confidentiality agreements so strict they couldn't even say for whom they were working.

NICOLE KIDMAN has reportedly broken off her engagement to country singer Keith Urban, fearing he has "not turned his back o­n his wild ways."

SIENNA MILLER and JUDE LAW are on the rocks again.

KEIRA KNIGHTLEY was snubbed by the BAFTA awards -- have they no patriotism? She bribed security guards to let ticketless friends into the pre-Golden Globes Vanity Fair party. And she's a cruel heartbreaker.

IRAQ: The Shiite and Kurdish coalitions came up just short of the two-thirds majority needed to form a government o­n their own giving Sunni Arab parties a much stronger political voice than they had before. At Iraq the Model, Omar has the breakdown. Diplomats in Washington, Arab as well as American, said the US would lean hard o­n the government to be as inclusive as possible -- no doubt US ambassador Zalmay Khalilzad will be doing the leaning. Bill Roggio posts o­n insurgent groups declaring war o­n al Qaeda.

IRAN has secretly extended the uranium enrichment plant at the centre of the international controversy over its resumption of banned nuclear research earlier this month, satellite imagery has revealed. With Sens. McCain, Lieberman and Clinton getting hawkish o­n the issue, The New York Times looks at pros and cons of a military strike.

NANOTECH: The Science Blog notes that researchers at the University of Pittsburgh are making strides towards quantum computers, which if feasible, likely will have as large an impact o­n technology as the transistor.

LOKI THE SQUIRREL MONKEY loves his toy duck. Awwww...

RUSSIAN MONKEYS brave the arctic temperatures in Moscow with wine. I guess the vodka was taken by the elephants.

DONKEYS make good shepherds, with the right training.

THE THAMES WHALE: The charming story of a seven-ton whale that made its way up the Thames to central London (video) and the ensuing rescue effort turned tragic when the whale passed away o­n a barge towards deeper water in the Thames Estuary. Rescuers hoped worldwide public interest in the whale's fate would promote conservation of the endangered species.

PINK DOLPHINS are spotted near Hong Kong. What would John Cougar Mellenhead say?

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Wilson Pickett, Cloud Room, Peaches Geldof, Whale Shark and Goose Poop   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Friday, January 20, 2006 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: kbade

Karl

THE WEEKEND STARTS HERE:

WILSON PICKETT -- that wicked, wicked Pickett -- died of a heart attack at 64. As a teenager, Pickett formed a gospel music group called the Violinaires which toured with the likes of Sam Cooke and The Soul Stirrers. Pickett's first major break came when he was invited to join The Falcons in the early 1959. Future Memphis soul notables Joe Stubbs (brother of Levi Stubbs of the Four Tops), Sir Mack Rice and Eddie Floyd were also members. In 1962, when "I Found a Love" (featuring Pickett o­n lead vocals) peaked at #6 o­n the R&B charts, he cut his first solo recordings, including "I'm Gonna Cry," his first collaboration with Don Covay, an important figure in Southern soul music. Pickett also recorded a demo for a song he co-wrote called "If You Need Me." Pickett sent the demo to Atlantic Records, where co-founder and producer Jerry Wexler liked it so much that he gave it to Solomon Burke; it became o­ne of Burke's biggest hits and landed Pickett a deal with Atlantic, where Wexler called him "Wicked" Pickett.

In 1965, Pickett scored a #21 pop hit with "In the Midnight Hour," which he co-wrote with legendary sessions musician Steve Cropper. A slew of late '60s R&B/soul hits followed, including "Land of 1,000 Dances," "Funky Broadway," "634-5789," "She's Lookin' Good" and "Mustang Sally." He even cut a surprisingly soulful cover of the Archies' "Sugar, Sugar." Muscle Shoals session guitarist Duane Allman talked Pickett into covering "Hey Jude," which was a hit for Pickett and helped launch Allman's career. As the '70s dawned, Pickett scored three consecutive top 20 pop singles with "Engine Number 9," "Don't Let the Green Grass Fool You" and "Don't Knock My Love Pt. 1." His last hit song was "Fire and Water" in 1972. He was was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1991, and two years later, he was also given the Pioneer award by the Rhythm and Blues Foundation. NPR has an audio remembrance. Pickett is also being remembered at MP3 blogs like Soul Shower, Spread the Good Word and An Aquarium Drunkard. Blogger Milbarge notes that Pickett's death comes o­n the heels of the death of Lou Rawls -- with Rawls, Pickett, Redding, Dave Prater, and even Arthur Conley dead, Sam Moore and James Brown should watch their health.

DEVO DISNEY! Devo have reformed to record a kids album called Devo 2.0 that will be released o­n March 17 by Disney Sound. Disney Sound's first releases were 2005's Here Come The ABC's CD and DVD from They Might Be Giants. Next up is a project with The Go-Go's. For now, we have the "Whip It" video in all of its terrifying glory.

FRIDAY TIMEWASTER: The Chuck Norris Random Fact Generator. Or you can go straight to the Top 30 Chuck Norris facts. ALSO: Chuck's take o­n the phenomenon.

JOHN LENNON'S original draft of lyrics to "A Day in the Life" has gone o­n sale in a sealed-bid auction ending March 7. The manuscript is expected to fetch about two million bucks.

BRIGHT EYES: Dylan Schäfer of USC's Daily Trojan knows Conor Oberst -- he's a fan of Conor Oberst -- but writes that Conor Oberst is no Bob Dylan.

BROKEN SOCIAL SCENE-ster Kevin Drew talks to the Toronto Star about how the world sees Canada as o­ne big scene and playing a 5 1/2 hour show in Tokyo.

100K VINTAGE AND DELETED EUROPEAN RECORDINGS are being unearthed by Universal Music Group for o­nline distribution. This program will offer material that, in some cases, goes back to the early days of recorded music. More recent material will include Eddie and the Hot Rods and Fairport Convention.

DRIVE-BY TRUCKER Patterson Hood talks about the importance of homecoming as the band is set to play Athens, GA this weekend.

THE BOY LEAST LIKELY TO: The band's self-produced and self-released debut, The Best Party Ever, was in Rough Trade's top 10 biggest sellers of the year. Multi-instrumentalist Pete Hobbs and lyricist/singer Jof Owen talk to MusicOMH about how pile of Smash Hits vinyl from 1980-1985 they bought for £3 changed their lives. You can also stream a few tracks from MySpace before the album gets here.

ARETHA FRANKLIN, AARON NEVILLE and DR JOHN will perform the national anthem at the Super Bowl next month.

TEGAN & SARA are glad people are getting over the whole Canadian identical twin-sister lesbian thing and enjoying their music. You can hear some yourself at MySpace.

ARCTIC MONKEYS: Their upcoming album's title, Whatever People Say I Am, That’s What I’m Not, is a tribute to Albert Finney and the character he played in Saturday Night And Sunday Morning.

CLOUD ROOM: Pitchfork ran a feature, "The Smash That Wasn't," about what can go wrong making an indie album, highlighting some friction between Cloud Room and its label, Gigantic. This being the Digital Age, the band has posted its response to the feature. You can stream the non-smash and a new song at MySpace.

THE DECEMBERISTS frontman Colin Meloy played a solo set o­n KEXP. You Ain't No Picasso is killing music.

BRADGELINA: Jolie has vowed to put maternal duties before her career when she gives birth to Pitt's child -- which her adopted children will discuss years later in therapy. Fametracker, in a first, performs a fame audit of the pair's fetus: "We will need special goggles. No, the goggles won't protect us. We'll need artists, great artists, who'll sacrifice their eyes for o­ne brief gaze upon the Brangelina infant (or, as we like to call it, the Infangelina), sketch its glory quickly, then spend their rest of their lives as blind babbling fools, jibbering in some monastery somewhere..."

NOW SHOWING: The big opener this weekend is Underworld: Evolution, which seemingly was not shown to critics -- a red flag, there. End of the Spear also opens today. Looking for Comedy in the Muslim World, by Albert Brooks, opens in limited release. Match Point, The New World, and Brokeback Mountain expand their screens.

LOVE MONKEY: I noted Wednesday that I thought I would give the show a chance -- a decision reinforced upon learning that Nic Harcourt, KCRW's music director and host of the weekday radio show "Morning Becomes Eclectic," is the show's music consultant. So far, he's booked buzz bands She Wants Revenge and Robbers o­n High Street, more established acts such as Aimee Mann, and an unsigned singer-songwriter named Eugene whose demo Harcourt received at KCRW.

SUPERMAN RETURNS: Are cost overruns Kryptonite for the Movie the Man of Steel?

SPIDERMAN 3: Gwen Stacy lives... and lives. She may be played by Bryce Dallas Howard.

BAFTA AWARDS: The nominees are led by The Constant Gardener, but Brokeback Mountain and Crash are close behind. And George Clooney got two noms in the supprting actor category, which will almost certainly split his vote.

SCARLETT JOHANSSON says that Woody Allen would interrupt the shooting of intense scenes in Match Point to ask, "So how old were you when you lost your virginity?" I have no idea why Soon-Yi decided to start dropping by the set.

BRITNEY SPEARS: Spenderline is at it again. This time he wants her to foot the bill for a Las Vegas nightclub he can run when he's done pretending he has musical talent.

PEACHES HONEYBLOSSOM MICHELLE CHARLOTTE ANGEL VANESSA GELDOF, daughter of Bob, and sister of Fifi Trixibelle, Pixie and Heavenly Hiraani Tiger Lily, comes out against celebs giving their kids silly names. No, really.

PRINCE: SkinnySlim blogs the Golden Globes afterparty thrown by the Artist formerly known as a goofy symbol.

TOM-KAT UPDATE: London's Sun reports that TV bosses have axed an episode of South Park which outs a fictional Tom Cruise character as gay — because they are scared the real actor will sue.

EX-PANTHERS CHEERLEADER Angela Keathley got six months probation for her role in a bathroom brawl sparked by accusations that she was having sex with another cheerleader. Victoria Renee Thomas (the hotter o­ne) has denied the sex allegation and pleaded not guilty.

STACY'S MOM claims she can't find a date.

IRAQ: At Iraq the Model, Omar writes about the results of election fraud investigations, but nails a larger point: "Actually, o­ne of our biggest problems is the lack of trust between the different parties and more dangerous is the little trust the parties have in democracy. This trust crisis is what causes those irrational reactions. The Shia politicians, although they are the biggest winners in the elections are still behaving like victims and they worry about whether this or that Sunni candidate was part of the Ba’ath party. And the same applies to the Sunni who are afraid of Shia domination despite the fact that their (the Sunni) parties will control nearly 30% of the parliament and there’s no chance they can be marginalized again. Not o­nly that, both sides say they’re being conspired upon by the others. This lack of trust will keep being a problem for Iraq…I’m not expecting politicians to trust each other but I hope they mature to trust democracy."

THE STANS: Bill Roggio notes that last Friday's airstrike in the Pakistani border town of Damadola also killed al-Qaeda’s operational commanders in Pakistan and Afghanistan. That's in addition to AQ's WMD chief. He also notes that the stepped-up terror campaign in Afghanistan by AQ and the Taliban does not sit well with the Afghanis, who organized a protest chanting, “death to Pakistan, death to al-Qaeda and death to the Taliban.”

PURPORTED BIN LADEN TAPE warns Americans of impending attacks and offers a truce (but not really, because who says OBL controlls all terrorists). At the Counterterrorism Blog, Dr. Walid Phares offers translation and analysis. Daveed Gartenstein-Ross posts o­n al-Qaeda's attempt to signal that it can be appeased.

IRAN: French President Jacques Chirac for the first time raised the threat of a nuclear strike o­n any state that launches "terrorist" attacks against France. He said France's doctrine of nuclear deterrence has been extended to protect the country's "strategic supplies," taken to mean oil. Although Chirac did not single out any country in his speech, he did mention "the temptation by certain countries to obtain nuclear capabilities in contravention of treaties."

THE WORLD'S LARGEST FISH is shrinking. That's the whale shark, which should not be confused with the far more deadly jaguar shark.

FUGITIVE WALLABY in France is headed for the stewpot after being found dead from a hit-and-run accident.

WASPFISH: A new species of the venomous creature was identified in the South Africa Institute for Aquatic Biodiversity collection in Grahamstown.

GEESE poop. It's a staggering problem that has Oakland, CA trying to figure out how to chase away some 2,000 resident Canadian geese that produce a ton of poop daily from Lake Merritt without running afoul of the Federal Migratory Bird and Endangered Species acts.

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The Elected, The National, Cherryholmes, Spiders and Snake   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Thursday, January 19, 2006 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: kbade

Karl

BLAKE SENNETT talks about recording his side project The Elected, which is dropping the same day as the solo album from his Rilo Kiley partner, Jenny Lewis: "I guess Jenny's Gene Simmons. So maybe I'm Paul Stanley." You can -- and should -- stream a couple from the band's website, as it's pretty nifty pop music. Meanwhile, Bows + Arrows is killing music with the downloads.

NEIL YOUNG: Rolling Stone excerpts its cover story o­n the godfather of grunge (and alt-country?), along with a feature o­n "The Best Neil Young Songs You Never Heard" and an archival Young interview by Cameron Crowe.

CLAP YOUR HANDS SAY YEAH announce tour dates.

WE ARE SCIENTISTS and MORNINGWOOD drew comparisons just because their albums dropped the same day. The New York Times compares their live shows, again to Morningwood's detriment. At Coolfer, Glenn updates his buzz-tracking of the two bands, which shows W.A.S. pulling away (in part due to the Scientists' UK following). Similarly, Morningwood is scoring 53 at Metacritic, while W.A.S. scores a 66.

THE WHITE STRIPES will appear o­n The Simpsons, though not until next season, due to the lengthy animation production cycle.

ISSAC HAYES, who is hospitalized with exhaustion in Memphis, is apparently not the cat who won't cop out...

THE NATIONAL got to play with the Boss at a NYC concert where bands performed Springsteen's Nebraska album in its entirety. Springsteen featured the National's "About Today" in the music played in venues before shows o­n his recent solo tour, and Aaron Dessner enthused, "It was almost absurd to me that he knows and likes our music." But not really surprising, given that their world-weary brand of Americana has been comapred to his, not to mention everyone from Golden Smog to GbV to Nick Cave. You can stream a few from the critically acclaimed Alligator at MySpace.

RYAN ADAMS gets a Village Voice profile subtitled: "Here's more non-bad publicity for a guy who never sees it that way."

PATTI SMITH, CAT POWER and KEVIN SHIELDS of My Bloody Valentine collaborated o­n a spoken word + music version of Smith's The Coral Sea.

SONY XCD DEBACLE: The security-compromising rootkit malware has been detected o­n military and government computer systems.

CHERRYHOLMES: The crtically acclaimed family bluegrass band gets an audio profile at NPR, along with three streaming tracks.

A LOOK AHEAD: The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette previews upcoming releases from "big deal" bands, including The Flaming Lips, Wilco, Ray Davies and Prince.

BRADGELINA: Us magazine reports that Jennifer Aniston was tipped about Jolie's pregnancy by Pitt's family. Pitt's friends say that his sense of fun has returned since leaving Aniston for Jolie.

LEIF GARRETT charged with heroin possession and not looking good. The L.A. Times has the before and after shots.

CATHERINE ZETA-JONES, otoh, is looking younger all the time. Britain's Daily Mail has the before and after shots.

TERI HATCHER and GEORGE CLOONEY are playing coy about their rumored date. IIRC, Hatcher said that she had picked her Golden Globes dress to win a man, not an award.

JUST ASKING: When Page Six asks, "which cuckolded cutie suffered an additional heartbreak when she decided to abort her child?" and "which pop strumpet preferred a certain kind of sexual intercourse, which let her technically maintain her virgin status, with her various hookups before she married her current husband?", do they think these are actually blind items?

KATE MOSS: The supposedly sober supermodel's new beau reportedly has a live-in girlfriend who is also a model. But could that have been enough to drive her into the clutches of Jack Osbourne? "A Lowdown spy reports that even Natalie Portman, Kate Hudson and Jessica Simpson were aghast as the 32-year-old mother of o­ne bumped and ground her waif-like charms into the slimmed-down 20-year-old son of Ozzy."

FELICITY HUFFMAN and WILLIAM H. MACY snapped getting their groove o­n at the InStyle Golden Globes afterparty.

BRITNEY SPEARS: Switching from Kabbalah to Hinduism?

LOHAN LOWDOWN: Less than a week after she was released from a hospital, Li-Lo is partying heartily again — but her mother insists there’s nothing to worry about. (2nd item.)

MADONNA: Friends of Madge worry that "she's working herself right into exhaustion."

STEVEN SPIELBERG: FWIW, Matt Drudge reports the uber-director is miffed that Universal chief Stacey Snider is backing Brokeback Mountain in the Oscars campaign, at the expense of Munich.

EVANGELINE LILLY: The Lost hottie o­nce filmed a TV commercial for a steamy chatline.

CULT OF THE iPod: Both NBC and ABC have seen a rise in viewer ratings since adding select TV shows to the iTunes Music Store.

NSA SURVEILLANCE: McSweeney's has "Selection From George W. Bush's Eavesdropping Tapes: Matthew Barney and Bjork Place an Ikea Phone Order."

PAKISTAN: Pakistani officials now believe that al Qaeda's master bomb maker and chemical weapons expert was killed in last week's US missile attack. He is described by authorities as the man who ran al Qaeda's infamous Derunta training camp in Afghanistan, where he used dogs and other animals as subjects for experiments with poison and chemicals. Counterterrism expert Dan Darling reported that Abu Khabab al-Masri ran al-Qaeda’s WMD program and was likely involved in the foiled Amman WMD attack.

IRAQ: Monday was homecoming day in California for 600 soldiers of a National Guard battalion that officials said suffered the most combat casualties of any California unit since the Korean War. The battalion included some of the best milbloggers, such as Major K and Danjel Bout, the Commander of A Co, 1-184 IN, 3ID in southern Baghdad. Bill Roggio covers the shift from offensive operations to counterinsurgency operations in Anbar province.

HAMSTER and SNAKE at the Tokyo Zoo are best friends, even though the hamster's name translates as "meal."

KAYLEE THE DOLPHIN SMUGGLED TO THE HOSPITAL in Chicago for a CT scan of her lungs. The procedure was planned like a small military operation. Because of her dorsal fin, o­nly half of Kaylee could fit in, but it was enough to see both her lungs.

SPIDERS, CENTIPEDES and SCORPION-LIKE CREATURES were among 27 new animal species that biologists have discovered in the dark, damp caves of two Central California national parks.

PRINCESS THE CAT interrupts Jean Poole and her 9-month-old granddaughter's nap, alerting them to a fire in their mobile home.

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