OK GO's latest video, for "Here It Goes Again" is an internet hit for good reason. Musically, it's somewhere between Cracker and the Kinks, which is not a bad place to be.
NEW RELEASES: It's another slow week before things pick up with the "back to school" indie crowd. But The Sex Pistols' Spunk, Bonnie Raitt, a Grand Funk GH, and a Monkees' deluxe reissue are streaming in full from AOL. The Buzzcocks have a new single with live B-sides. And there's a limited edition box set of the KISS solo albums! No?
THE 200 GREATEST SONGS OF THE 1960's: Remember those fabulous Sixties? All this week Indie tastemaker Pitchfork does.
YACHT ROCK: Stereogum reports on Michael McDonald's shout out to Paul Rudd in The 40-Year-Old Virgin. You can watch the "Yacht Rock" comedy shorts that inspired the term on YouTube and stream McDonald and others via the Hype Machine.
THE DECEMBERISTS' upcoming album is leaking onto the internet. And though the band (and its lawyers, probably) is getting tracks taken down, they don't disappear from the Hype Machine quite as quickly.
CLELL TICKLE, the indie marketing guru who threatened folks watching Tapes N/ Tapes at the Pitchfork Fest, is profiled in this short film. Dialog probably NSFW, even after bleeping.
SLEATER-KINNEY: The band's last pogo is reviewed in the L.A. Times. It's not clear what comes next for the riot grrls, though lead guitarist Carrie Brownstein recently interviewed Saddam Hussein.
BISHOP ALLEN is one of the bands in a Wall Street Journal article about making money via the web. BA is releasing four new songs a month for a year on their site. "Click Click Click Click" is from July. YANP has bonus tracks from prior months.
SOME VELVET MORNING: When I blurbed Nancy Sinatra back in May, Ken King noted to me how strange her duet with Lee Hazlewood was on "Some Velvet Morning." Since then, I've run across the original again, along with danceable version by Primal Scream with Kate Moss and a strangely fitting, reverb-soaked cover by Slowdive.
PETE DOHERTY-KATE MOSS UPDATE: Although the supposedly sober supermodel is helping the troubled singer kick drugs, rumors of their engagement are denied.
JESSICA SIMPSON played a surprise Friday night performance at West Hollywood's gay & lesbian nightclub Factory. Egotastic has your video of bad dancing and making "You Spin Me 'Round (Like A Record)" sound even worse than the original. *Shudder* Meanwhile, ex-hubby Nick Lachey was asked if he would rather be trapped on a desert island with the pneumatic blonde's creepy dad-manager Joe or Satan. After some hesitation, Lachey said, "I might take my chances with Satan, Prince of Darkness."
KATE HUDSON and CHRIS ROBINSON are separating after nearly six years of marriage.
DENISE & HEATHER & RICHIE & CHARLIE & DAVID: Perhaps inspired by Monday's events in the Mideast, Charlie Sheen and Denise Richards have also agreed to an interim cessation of hostilities. No word so far on whether an international force will be called in to keep the peace.
HUGH GRANT, meanwhile, is rumored to be getting married to Jemima Khan... in about two years.
TOM-KAT UPDATE: The couple played Good Samaritans for some auto accident victims, while civilians claim a Tom-Kitten sighting at a birthday for Jaden Smith, son of Jada Pinkett and Will Smith.
SCARLETT JOHANSSON and JOSH HARTNETT are reportedly moving into a luxury six-million-dollar NYC loft, requesting extra soundproofing in their bedroom. Hartnett's rep denies they are moving in together.
MADONNA: Kids say the darnedest things. Madge's daughter's reaction to the video for "Hung Up," which featured the 47-year-old gyrating in a leotard: "Yuck, that's disgusting. Why are you behaving like that?"
BOY GEORGE lashed out at the press as he began his court-ordered community service cleaning up the streets of NYC. VH1's Best Week Ever has video, though not of his hissy fit.
FARRAH FAWCETT gets better plastic surgery. But I don't think that cures the crazy part.
WILLIAM SHATNER was roasted for at a Comedy Central special to air Aug. 20th. I like that they made him sit in Captain Kirk's chair.
THE ASSOCIATED PRESS denies the documented staging of photos in Lebanon, but maybe we should not be surprised. For example, on Sunday, the AP quoted Azzam Tamimi, "director of the London-based Institute of Islamic Political Thought," blaming the rise of Islamic terrorism on the war in Iraq and the situation in "Palestine." Nothing in the story suggests that Tamimi himself publicly calls for the eradication of Israel and declares his support for Hezbollah, Islamic Jihad and Hamas, as you can see in the linked video.
IRAQ: Michael Yon is back to blogging from the theater. He has an interview with Omar from ITM and a quick piece noting that despite the incredible progress that has been made in Iraq, we are in great peril of losing the war entirely. He mentions censorship in that post, but his interview at Pundit Review radio suggests he does not think it's too late to get things back on track, though things remain as dangerous in Afghanistan. Yon also has choice words for the global media coverage of the war.
AIR TERROR PLOT: German authorities are investigating links to suspects arrested in London following an alleged plot to blow up trans-Atlantic airliners. MI5 agents used and "sneak and peek" raids to plant bugs in the homes of key suspects. The alleged ringleader quickly broke under Pakistani interrogation that "was probably not gentle." These are cases to at least consider when the US debates issues like "sneak and peek" warrants under the PATRIOT Act, rendition of terror suspects to countries that practice torture, and US interrogation methods. I would prefer to have the moral high ground, but I wouldn't want to watch nine airliners explode over US cities from there, either.
SAMMY the DUCK lives in the Palms of Largo assisted living community in FL, even though he's much younger than the human residents. It appears that Sammy may not be aware he is a duck. More pics and video at the link.
IT'S A PANDA BABY BOOM in China, with the birth of two more pairs of panda twins born at Chinese breeding centers.
WILD HORSES: The world's oldest known Przewalski horse -- the only surviving subspecies of horse that has never been domesticated -- has died in the Prague zoo. Thanks to a breeding program, some 300 of the horses now live in the wild of Mongolia.
THE WOOLY MAMMOTH may stage a comeback of sorts, if Japanese researchers have their way.
ANIMAL HUSBANDRY: Author Amy Sutherland's life changed after taking the techniques of the nation's premier school for exotic animal trainers and applying them to her husband.