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Topic: Karl

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I'm From Barcelona, Beatle Bob, Cutout Bin, and a Hot Pig   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Friday, August 11, 2006 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: kbade

Karl

THE WEEKEND STARTS HERE...

... with I'M FROM BARCELONA, a 29-member pop collective that actually hails from Sweden, incorporating strings, horns, banjo, accordion, and kazoos into bouncy indie pop with the uplift of the Polyphonic Spree without the cultish white robes. Pitchfork rated Let Me Introduce My Friends at 8.4, with a "Best New Music" tag. The video for "We're From Barcelona" is the obvious (and uber-catchy) place to start, but "Collection of Stamps" has the most fun with a giant keyboard I've seen since Big. BONUS: Those videos don't give a cliue as to how their thing works o­nstage, so here's the band live at the Painter Popaganda festival in Stockholm. Up With Indie!

GOOD VIBRATIONS: Paste magazine visits the New York Theremin Summit, recaps the strange story of its inventor, Russian intellectual Leon Theremin, and explains that the instrument technically was not used o­n the Brian Wilson classic.

DONNY HATHAWAY is a legend and "a kind of stealth patron saint" of R & B, according to critic Tom Moon in a new NPR series o­n "Shadow Classics." The piece has three Hathaway tracks for your streaming pleasure.

RICK JAMES now has a massive two ton jet-black tombstone, bearing an image of the funk legend clad in tight pants, jacket and clutching a guitar. It's superfreakyyy--ow!

ONE-NIGHT STANDS was the theme of last week's Culture Vulture playlist in London's Guardian. Some of the songs are not found o­nline, and some not by the artist listed -- but I found some interesting covers in this list: "You Shook Me All Night Long" by the Arab Strap; "Darling Nikki" by the Foo Fighters; "Pretty In Pink" (soundtrack version) by The Psychedelic Furs; and "F--- and Run" by Liz Phair. Plus, I dug up video of "Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow?" by the Shirrelles and a cover of "Angel Of The Morning" by Juice Newton (I tried to find the Pretenders' version, I really, really did).

BEATLE BOB: "Beatle Bob dances alone. This itself is enough to fuel rumors. He is the fan who, through sheer enthusiasm, can steal a show... On any given night he materializes, seemingly out of nowhere, and then vanishes, leaving a wake of speculation about where he lives and how he earns his living..." Some folks wish he would just sit down. There's a teaser trailer for a Beatle Bob documentary posted o­n MySpace, with clips of Bob in action, plus commentary from Bob and rockers like Jello Biafra and Mojo Nixon. But his latest coup was appearing onstage with The Frames at Lollapalooza.

THE ROLLING STONES: Mick Jagger admits he takes lessons to preserve his voice after more than three decades of touring -- and recommends it for living rockers, too. Meanwhile, Kasabian's Tom Meighan backpedals from his claim that his band -- which is opening for the Stones in Europe -- would be forced to pay to see the living dead headliners play.

JOLIE HOLLAND talks to the Sydney Morning Herald about dating and musical role model Tom Waits. There's a selection of Holland tracks streamable from the Hype Machine. You can select them individually or select a media player at the top of the page for a Jolie jukebox.

THOM YORKE: The Radiohead frontman removed his call for British PM Tony Blair's ouster from the band's website without explanation, leading to all sorts of speculation.

CUTOUT BIN: More fortuitous finds from ye olde Hype Machine. Frank Black - Duke of Earl; Big Daddy - Ice Ice Baby (trust me o­n that); The Ronettes - (The Best Part Of) Breakin' Up; The Belle Stars - Iko Iko; Eels - I Could Never Take The Place Of Your Man; The La's - There She Goes; Ben Folds - Lost In The Supermarket; The Wrens - This Boy Is Exhausted; The Boo Radleys - Alone Again Or (Arthur Lee, RIP); World of Twist - She's A Rainbow (Tony Ogden, RIP); David Essex - Rock o­n.

PETE DOHERTY-KATE MOSS UPDATE: The troubled singer is hoping to marry the supposedly sober supermodel as soon as he cleans up his act for good (so it might be awhile, if history is any guide). In the meantime, the attention the couple attracts is drawing the ire of his bandmates in Babyshambles.

NOW SHOWING: This week's wide releases are World Trade Center (currently scoring 70 percent o­n the Tomatometer, higher with the "cream of the crop" critics. BTW, I'm not saying that director Oliver Stone had anything to do with yesterday's big air terror alert... but I question the timing) and the "didn't I see this with Travolta" dance movie Step Up (21 percent). The X-Men-meets-Sky High family comedy Zoom and the "dead people as a computer virus" thriller Pulse open wide without advance showings for critics; draw your own inference. The critically-acclaimed Little Miss Sunshine expands, though o­nly to 153 screens. Fortunately, o­ne was near me. It's a dark comedy with an ultimately positive take o­n what happens when your dream is dashed. The ensemble cast prevents delving into any of the characters with depth, but still very nicely done. You can stream some of the soundtrack, which includes Sufjan Stevens and DeVotchka, via MySpace.

TOM-KAT UPDATE: X-17 seems to have blurry arial shots of the Tom-Kitten, taken by copter through a window of Tom-Kat Manor. That seems a little intrusive. Meanwhile, Holmes supposedly had Cruise pass a note to Brad Pitt asking for him and the Jolie-Pitt clan to join Tom and his family for a barbecue. Cruise has also invited Victoria and David Beckham to meet baby Suri, with a list of instructions of how to behave around their daughter. I'm sure no pitch for Scientology would be involved in either case.

BRITNEY SPEARS wants to renew her wedding vows with Spenderline? Most gossips are using the "Oops, I Did It Again" punchline, so I'm going with "Crazy."

BRADGELINA: Building o­n prior rumors, the latest is that Jolie is having people spy o­n Pitt while he's shooting movies, after they allegedly agreed to take a year off after the birth of Shiloh.

VAUGHNISTON: As noted yesterday, Aniston's rep denied that Vaughn had proposed. US Weekly stands by its story, upping the ante by blogging "Famous Denials By Jen Anistonís Publicist." In the face of conflicting rumors, MSNBC consults a Magic 8-Ball and a Ouija board. No, really.

WHO KNEW?

DAVE NAVARRO and CARMEN ELECTRA BREAK-UPDATE: Electra filed for divorce Thursday. Citing irreconcilable differences, Electra requests that their assets be divided as specified in their prenuptial agreement and that the court not award spousal support to either party.

JESSICA SIMPSON probably won't be getting a reality show o­n Bravo anytime soon. Andy Cohen, Bravo's Vice President of Production and Programming, writes (albeit in the style of teenage girl) in his blog: "I will never give her another chance. She is everything that's wrong with the world. I told him I have to stand for something. I hate her. My parents taught me not to hate anybody so I am going to revise that and say that I can't stand the sight of her stupid blank face."

THE SEXIEST WOMAN ALIVE: Esquire magazine has posted its latest teaser interview for its contest to guess who the mag has selected. Actually, it's more of a spoiler interview, which I had already guessed.

HEIDI KLUM: Speaking of Esquire, the supermodel is not wearing much in the new issue. Just a little something for a Friday.

ZOOEY DESCHANEL is set to portray Janis Joplin in the Penelope Spheeris-directed indie biopic. I like Zooey, and she can sing, though I'm not sure she can sing like Janis. Still, she beats Lindsay Lohan, who was o­nce rumored to have the part.

DIANE LANE: The Unfaithful star gives love a bad name.

HOORAY FOR HEZBOLLYWOOD: German TV ran video of "Green Helmet" staging photos at Qana. When a European blogger first started raising questions about this guy, Kathleen Carroll, AP's senior vice president and executive editor dismissed them, saying that in addition to personally speaking with photo editors, "I also know from 30 years of experience in this business that you can't get competitive journalists to participate in the kind of (staging) experience that is being described." She may want to rethink that. And that building that supposedly got bombed twice, weeks apart? Make that three times. CNN had a piece o­n the faking or staging of photos from the conflict, with Anderson Cooper relating how Hezbollah was "making stuff up" and staging ambulance runs for the press.

IRAQ: At ITM, Mohammed raises interesting questions about the Arabic media. Chaos continues in some areas of Baghdad. Iraqi police arrested three gunmen hiding in a mosque in western Baghdad. Shepherds in the rural western Baghdad neighborhood of Gazalea have recently been murdered, according to locals, for failing to diaper their goats. However, after US and Iraqi sealed off parts of the southern Dora district, the murder rate, which peaked at 20 a day after a surge in sectarian violence, is now zero.

AIR TERROR PLOT FOILED: You know this already. The plot was similar to the failed "Operation Bojinka" of 1995. The Times of London has a dramatic backgrounder o­n the police raids triggered when it was learned -- perhaps from an undercover agent or US intercepts of the group's communications -- that the terrorists had developed the capacity to assemble bombs meant for flights to New York, Washington, San Francisco, Boston and Los Angeles. A senior Pakistani official told the Times of London that at least three of the people arrested were linked to al Qaeda -- two having been to Pakistan for explosives training with known AQ commanders. The paper also has a list of the suspects. The Council o­n American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) and the Muslim Public Affairs Council (MPAC) criticized Pres. Bush for calling a foiled plot to blow up airplanes part of a "war with Islamic fascists." CAIR officials have been charged with, and some convicted of, offenses related to the support of Islamist terrorism. OTOH, MPAC's members have claimed Israel was to blame for 9/11, have opposed freezing the assets of Islamic charities linked to terrorism and have denounced several FBI arrests of suspected terrorists in the United States.

EDU-BLOGGING: The 79th Carnival of Education is o­nline, with a theme of Readin', 'Riting, and 'Rithmetic.

PERCY THE MINIATURE PIG tries to beat Britain's heat wave.

LOUIS THE GOAT was crowned King of Ireland o­n Thursday in o­ne of the country's oldest festivals. Hail King Lou! (Do you get a deal o­n Guinness with that?)

AN OCTOPUS IN THE OHIO RIVER died after playing a role in a student film.

A SQUIRREL near Swindon in the UK may give the harmless little bunny from Monty Python and the Holy Grail a run for his money.

A LOBSTER PICKPOCKET is busted near Plymouth in the UK and pays the ultimate price.

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Tom Waits, Beirut, Broken Social Scene, and a Tiny Kitty   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Thursday, August 10, 2006 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: kbade

Karl

TOM WAITS almost certainly doesn't care what I thought of last night''s show at Chicago's Auditorium Theater. After all, Waits is considered by some to be one of the world's greatest living songwriters, melding rock, jazz noir, swampy blues and clanking vaudeville music into his unmistakeable sound. Someone who has a virtual second career suing companies that try to rip off his songs and sound for commercials. A guy working overtime to stop ticket scalpers and counterfeiters from charging Stones and McCartney-level prices o­n eBay for tickets for this tiny tour to promote Orphans, a collection of "orphan" Waits songs not due until November. A man who discovered the wheel and built the Eiffel Tower out of metal and brawn. But fwiw, I thought the show very cool indeed. Very simply staged and lit, because Tom Waits and his music have all the theatrics you need for an evening.

Let's go to the audio-video. You can watch Waits talk to David Letterman about homework and an artistic horse before playing "Make It Rain," the number Waits opened with last night (and a scorcher of a version at that). Other highlights of the first part of the set included "God's Away o­n Business" and "All The World Is Green," which some YouTuber inexplicably used for a LotR fan video.

After a while, the band (except stand-up bassist Larry Taylor) left and a piano was rolled centerstage, where Tom recalled living near Belmont and Sheffield (expressing dismay that it's a nicer neighborhood now) before playing "Tango Til They're Sore." He then told a variation o­n the joke at the start of this clip of "Johnsburg, Illinois" before playing "Tom Traubert's Blues" (you can also see bootleg video of his Aug 5th rendition in Nashville). When the rest of the band returned (including Tom's son Casey o­n drums), the set tended to favor some of the weirder Waits (as if regular Waits isn't), including the announcement that it was "storytime" before Waits launched into the funny paranoia of "What's He Building?" The latter part of the regular set tended to favor his bluesier side, with mid-tempo numbers like "Whistlin' Past The Graveyard."

The end of the set and encore included "Murder in the Red Barn" and "The Day After Tomorrow' -- the latter being a shoo-in geographically and topically. A second encore included "Singapore" (iirc) -- and this bootleg video from Memphis shows how Waits and the band would dramatically take the stage from behind curtains. The finale of the evening was "Time," which happens to be a favorite Waits track of mine. A wonderful evening, but if you want even more Waits there's plenty to stream via the Hype Machine -- if you select o­ne of the players at the top of the HM page, it's like a Waits jukebox!

THE CANDY BARS and THEATER FIRE, two bands that would sound at home o­n the Garden State soundtrack, are the focus of an audio feature from NPR's All Things Considered.

THE SHINS: Speaking of the Garden State soundtrack, The Shins have pushed the release of their next disc to 2007. The band has ditched UK festival dates to keep recording.

BEIRUT frontman Zach Condon talks to New York Magazine about working to live up to the band's early buzz and live down its suddenly topical name. The writer describes Beirutís songs as "like the lush score to a movie about Gypsies and bohemians." You can hear them yourself via the Hype Machine.

PATE BASSIST MIKE KELLY recently reminded me that in the bizarre world of eBay, Pate is considered a hip-hop dance band.

BROKEN SOCIAL SCENE: Stereogum has great set of photos taken backstage at Lollapalooza with the Canadian collective and a minute of "7/4 Shoreline" taken from the press pit. You can see the whole song also, albeit from further back in the crowd. The happy medium of sound quality to distance may be this clip of "Stars and Sons," but the ladies of BSS o­nly make a cameo o­n this number, during the audience participation segment. Of course, for even better sound quality, there's plenty more BSS streaming via the Hype Machine.

MALAJUBE, a band with a sound music blogger Kayhryn Yu rightly compares to "The Flaming Lips or the Super Furry Animals, with a touch of The Beatles at times," makes NPR's Song of the Day with "Montreal -40C." If o­nly the band wan't French.

MUSIC RECOMMENDATION SERVICES: Pate fan Denise Fryzek recently e-mailed me to gush about the music-recommendation-service-Internet-radio-station Pandora. I haven't blurbed the topic recently, so it's worth revisiting for our many new visitors. Pandora streams and recommends music to listeners based o­n its Music Genome Project, which involves a team of musicians analyzing a song's inherent qualities -- melody, harmony, rhythm, instrumentation, orchestration, arrangement, lyrics, etc. -- as the basis of its recommendations. In contrast, competing services, such as Last.fm, use profiles generated by its users to make recommendations. For example, folks who like the Jesus & Mary Chain and Echo & the Bunnymen also tend to like the Velvet Underground. These services are based o­n a business model of exploiting what Chris Anderson has famously called the "Long Tail." Anderson argues that products that are in low demand or have low sales volume can collectively make up a market share that rivals or exceeds the relatively few current bestsellers and blockbusters, if the store or distribution channel is large enough, a la Amazon or Netflix. Anderson recently wrote about "The Rise and Fall of the Hit" in Wired magazine. Lee Gomes was skeptical of the "Long Tail" in a review of Anderson's book o­n the theory; Anderson responded o­n his blog; Nick Carr reprinted a reply from Gomes.

THE HIT FACTORY, home to recording sessions by John Lennon, Stevie Wonder, Madonna and U2, is going condo.

PETE DOHERTY UPDATE: The troubled singer, recently seen again with supposedly sober supermodel Kate Moss, has done a painting in blood of himself a mystery naked woman. He has also been working o­n an anti-drug anthem with The Streets' Mike Skinner.

MAD MEL UPDATE: Apparently, the National Enquirer is prepping a story alleging that Mel Gibson has "indulged in years of cocaine and booze binges and torrid extramarital affairs." Meanwhile, Disney is shopping Gibson's upcoming Apocalypto to other potential distributors.

TOM-KAT UPDATE: Sources tell Page Six that Vanity Fair has landed the first photos of the Tom-Kitten -- taken by Annie Leibovitz and scheduled for publication this Fall.

JESSICA SIMPSON: The pneumatic blonde's creepy dad-manager, who reportedly told stories at an MTV meeting of helping her to fit for her first bra, is apparently close to getting the axe from both Jessica and sister Ashlee. Meanwhile, her post-divorce affairs seem to be fizzling (2nd item).

BRITNEY SPEARS looks much better heavily airbrushed. Teddy & Moo have the before-and-after shots.

ROBIN WILLIAMS has been admitted into rehab for alcohol abuse. He must have taken the flop of The Night Listener pretty hard.

VAUGHNISTON: US Weekly has Vaughn proposing to Aniston. Jen's rep denies it. Meanwhile, Britain's Star magazine has Aniston heartbroken that Vaughn has distanced himself and refuses to discuss marriage.

BRADGELINA: The ever-reliable Star magazine claims that Jolie has moved out, taking the kids with her, while US Weekly has Jolie still moved in.

POPE BENEDICT XVI wants to wear my red shoes.

BILL CLINTON is turning 60 o­n Aug. 17, but the birthday celebrations will continue for months, culminating with a private Rolling Stones concert at the Beacon Theatre o­n Oct. 29. Political observers point out that the New York festivities are well-timed to coincide with the 59th birthday Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton, which is Oct. 26 -- just a week before Election Day. Of course, it will o­nly be well-timed if Bill can keep his hands to himself. Or, more accurately, if he can keep those stories out of the media.

ANGIE HARMON regularly tantalizes her husband, former NY Giant Jason Sehorn, by donning sexy schoolgirl and French maid costumes. Excuse me; I'll be back in a moment.

KEVIN SMITH: You don't have to be a fan of Clerks or even Chasing Amy to enjoy the writer-director's story of working o­n a script for Superman Lives that demonstrates just how messed-up folks are in Tinseltown. You do, however, have to tolerate a Deadwood-level of profanity.

IRAQ: US troops arrested four Iraqi men in the kidnapping of American journalist Jill Carroll, who was freed in March. Maj. Gen. Bill McCoy, who commands the Corps of Engineers in Iraq, responds to a WaPo story o­n reconstruction, but it appears that the paper can't be bothered to print it.

MIDEAST CONFLICT and the MEDIA: The Washington Post, The New York Times and USA Today finally noticed that bloggers are uncovering fraud and Hezbollah propaganda in the output of Reuters and other news outlets. The NYT tries to defend itself by noting it corrected its caption of the phony corpse in Tyre, though this correction went unnoticed by the paper's web edition (which tells you how many people ever see a newspaper's corrections). Meanwhile, the Israeli press is surveying still more photos coming out of Lebanon being challenged by bloggers.

IS HEED THE WORLD'S SMALLEST CAT? The Guinness Book of Records thinks he's o­n track to beat the current record holder, Mr. Peebles from Illinois...

BEAR WRASSLIN': In hindsight, Jeff Morris concedes it was "the absolute epic moment of stupidity in my life."

A SIX-FOOT SWORDFISH was caught less than a mile off the coast of Newbiggin-by-the-Sea, Northumberland --two or three thousand miles away from its natural habitat in the Mediterranean.

PET HOARDING: This time, it's 300 pit bull terriers from a suspected dogfighting ring found at a Liberty County, TX residence where a man bled to death after being shot in the leg last week.

A JUMPING STRUGEON knocked a 23-year-old man o­n a personal watercraft unconscious, way down upon the Suwannee River. You're gonna need a bigger boat.

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P.F. Sloan, R.E.M., Arthur Lee, The Wrens, and Penguins on the Highway   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Wednesday, August 09, 2006 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: kbade

Karl

P.F. SLOAN, who wrote hits like "Secret Agent Man," "You Baby" -- and who can forget Barry McGuire's immortal "Eve of Destruction?" -- as well as playing o­n 60s hits like "Letís Live For Today" and "California Dreamin'," is working o­n o­n album of old and new songs with help from Lucinda Williams, Frank Black, The Rascals' Felix Cavaliere and Buddy Miller.

LOLLAPALOOZA REMAINDERS: Pitchfork deigned to cover the rival fest in a piece that, contrary to almost every other review, rips the Flaming Lips' set. At Chromewaves, Frank posted a four-part round-up chock full of links to pics, MP3s and videos from the bands that palyed the fest. At Stereogum, amrit posted a bunch of nifty stage and backstage shots, including Patti Smith making a last-minute appearance at the Kids stage.

R.E.M.: rbally has a two-part posting of a bootleg of a gig at the UK's National Bowl in 1995. You can stream it from the Hype Machine without killing music.

U2 has reportedly transferred some of its publishing company to Holland to avoid taxes. Meanwhile, Bono's Elevation Partners just bought a significant minority stake in Forbes Media.

ARTHUR LEE: More remembrances of the late Love frontman. The first is in print from The Doors' John Densmore. The second is an excellent audio piece o­n Lee and Love from rock historian Ed Ward at NPR. BONUS: If you're willing to download a small plug-in and reboot your computer, you can stream Love's classic Forever Changes album from Rhapsody for free.

THE WRENS: I told Ken at the Pitchfork Fest that The Wrens were among the bands I saw at the 2005 fest that I would eagerly see again. At *Sixeyes, alan streams a few and updates us o­n Kathryn Yu's documentary o­n the band, which has been o­n a long and winding road, yet persevering. The video above is "Faster Gun" from The Meadowlands.

IRON MAIDEN singer Bruce Dickinson airlifted 200 British citizens who fled war-torn Beirut from Cyprus to the UK.

BOB DYLAN: This folk-rock singer-songwriter from Minnesota almost seems a bit old to be launching a MySpace page, but his songs are kinda catchy. I recommend him.

THE DIXIE CHICKS have canceled 14 shows and pushed back others o­n their current tour. The group says it has replaced them with other dates. Opening for Puppet Show?

PETE DOHERTY-KATE MOSS UPDATE: The troubled singer and the supposedly sober supermodel were caught getting cozy at the low-key Rhythm Festival in Clapham o­n Sunday, hobnobbing backstage with Jerry Lee Lewis and Shane McGowan.

MAD MEL UPDATE: Ralph Shapiro, the Deputy in Charge at the Malibu branch of the D.A.'s office, has been taken off the Mel Gibson case, while the L.A. County Sheriff's Department officially rejected TMZ's request for the video and audio tapes of Gibson's arrest. The actor's fall makes Malibu neighbors feel comfy dishing o­n Mel's kids. And Oasys Mobile has created a "Mel in Malibu" ringtone with a professional actor impersonating Gibsonís infamous tirade.

JACKO claims that a conspiracy by former attorneys, associates and advisers forced him into financial ruin. But the Mel Gibson story precludes him from being more specific.

CHRISTIE BRINKLEY BREAK-UPDATE: The cover girl queen has taken a preliminary step in divorcing her philandering hubby, but may be wavering o­n going through with a permanent split. Peter Cook reportedly agreed in their prenup that she's entitled to keep the lioness' share of their marital assets, so perhaps he really seemed genuinely mournful at their recent confrontation in the Hamptons.

WORLD TRADE CENTER opens today to largely favorable reviews, but I won't be seeing it today, due to a prior engagement with Mr. Tom Waits. If you're still o­n the fence about seeing it, Coming Soon has posted eight clips in multiple formats. Director Oliver Stone takes praise fom his usual conservative critics in stride: "Listen, anybody -- right, left, Martian, any gender, any race, anywhere -- who loves the movie is a person I love." And with Stone, you know he means it -- especially the bit about the Martians. Stone also offered his opinion that "Nine-eleven was used politically to enhance American isolationism," which I suspect will come as some surprise to Afghanis and Iraqis.

THE McCARTNEYS: Sir Paul's security staff called the cops when o­ne of his estranged wife's guards climbed a wall to let her in to Sir Paul's estate, after realizing the locks at the home had been changed. A rep for Heather Mills gets the pathetic spin award: "She said it was hilarious. It was just a complete mix-up."

DAVE NAVARRO and CARMEN ELECTRA BREAK-UPDATE: Perez Hilton gets confirmation from Navarro that the guitarist is seeing porn superstarlet Jenna Jameson, who appears to be splitting from husband Jay Grdina. BTW, appropos of nothing, Jameson's MySpace page streams Fleetwood Mac's "Gypsy."

TOM-KAT UPDATE: Cruise and Holmes will reportedly be making a decision to release photographs of the Tom-Kitten "shortly." I put that in quotes because I don't wan't Cruise to think I'm making fun of his height.

SCIENTOLOGISTS had to rock-a rock-a rock-a nonstop tonight -- uh-huh! -- down at the Celebrity Centre. Video at the link, in which we learn that John Travolta is "everywoman." I thought L. Ron was not down with that.

LINDSAY LOHAN says she wants to entertain the troops in Iraq, but mistakenly thinks that singing is the way for her to do that. I'm pretty sure that the Supreme Court now puts that under Article Three of the Geneva Conventions.

THE SOPRANOS will have a new recurring celebrity role in the final episodes starting next March.

MORE FUNNY PHOTOS FROM THE MIDEAST: The AP claims the above photo shows Lebanese army soldiers inspecting "a damaged vehicle that was struck by Israeli ware (sic) plane missiles." Yet the windshield magically survived without even a crack! Also, it looks like the folks in Tyre are big fans of Monty Python and the Holy Grail, especially the scene where Eric Idle tries to rid himself of someone who is not quite dead. The AP ran a photo of the dead in Tyre, missing the guy getting up at the end. There's a different phony dead guy in these NYT photos from Tyre, too. And US News and World Report seems to have put a staged photo of a jihadi at a trash dump right o­n its cover. Hooray for Hezbollywood!

MIDEAST CONFLICT in the MEDIA II: Yesterday, I noted that Washington Post writer Tom Ricks went o­n CNN and casually accused Israel of allowing Hezbollah to retain some of its firepower so they can continue to have a sort of moral equivalency in their operations in Lebanon. Now he seems to say this was a hypothetical suggested by retired US military officers, yet still claims what he said o­n CNN was accurate. None of the conclusions to be drawn from the apparent contradiction are favorable to Ricks. I also note that Ricks got away with this o­n a CNN show hosted by Howard Kurtz, who -- like Ricks -- also works for the WaPo.

IRAQ: The cellphone business is booming. OTOH, so is the suitcase business. While sectarian violence continues to flare in Baghdad, an Iraqi Army division took control of a section of the country that includes the cities of Tikrit and Kirkuk, marking the halfway point in transitioning from US control. Iraqi forces are also assuming responsibility for the training of their countryís soldiers. The New York Times notices the heroism of Capt. Brian Chontosh, who was awarded the Navy Cross, the second-highest award given to Marines -- in an op-ed by an author, as the paper never bothered to report o­n Chontosh.

...AND THERE WERE PENGUINS ALL OVER THE HIGHWAY: Twenty-one penguins from Indianapolis were rescued o­n a hot east Texas highway Tuesday after a truck carrying the wildlife to a temporary home south of Houston overturned. Four penguins and some exotic fish were killed in the accident, but an octopus was unhurt. Dramatic penguin pics and video at WTHR.

AN OTTER WAS PUNCHED IN THE FACE by a West Boca, FL woman after the otter grabbed her Labrador retriever and began to pull it into the water in the Tampa Bay area community. And in my head, Ron Burgundy is reading that.

TURTLE o­n FIRE: Cruel teenage morons are busted for lighting a turtle o­n fire and dancing around it, after the video they made of the ritual and posted o­n the Internet was e-mailed to local police.

PANDAPOLOOZA: A giant panda in China has given birth to the heaviest cub born in captivity after the longest period in labor; elsewhere in China, twin pandas each gave birth to twins.

TIGERPALOOZA: Endangered Siberian tigers get a new lease o­n life. Meanwhile, in NYC, a tiger owner who sued New York city and police for searching his apartment without a warrant to confiscate his pet 450-pound Siberian tiger are tantamount to "chutzpah," a federal judge said in a ruling dismissing the case.

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Videopalooza, New Releases, The Essex Green, and hungry Armadillos   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Tuesday, August 08, 2006 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: kbade

Karl

VIDEOPALOOZA: Clips from last weekend's fest surface o­n YouTube, including some shot from backstage. For example, you can see Gnarls Barkley take the stage to "We Are The Champions" and play "Crazy" in their tennis gear from backstage as well as the backstage view of The Raconteurs covering "Crazy." There's also a backstage clip of The Go! Team playing "We Won't Be Defeated." If you prefer the view from the mosh pit, you can check out Sonic Youth's "Schizophrenia" and The Flaming Lips playing "Yoshimi Battles The Pink Robots." Indeed, from the Lips' set you can also see short clips of the balloon drop and Wayne surfing the crowd in the Space Bubble. There's also Sleater-Kinney playing "Entertain" at o­ne of their last shows ever.

NEW RELEASES: Another slow week in the dog days of summer. The soundtrack to Zach Braff's The Last Kiss is streaming from AOL Music. The Sadies do their Americana thing In Concert. Comets o­n Fire roll out heavy psychedelia somewhere between the Allmans and Bule Oyster Cult. And Fiery Furnace Matthew Friedberger releases a schizophrenic solo album -- half summer pop, half concept album about a religious school.

SOUL ASYLUM frontman Dave Pirner talks to PopMatters about coming full circle geographically and musically. You can stream the band's set at the World Cafe from NPR.

CANADIAN AMERICANA is big in Europe. And now Disney's "It's A Small World" song is stuck in my head.

CHUCK KLOSTERMAN, an author and columnist for Esquire who has written for GQ, SPIN, The New York Times Magazine, The Washington Post, The Believer, and ESPN, lists "Music You Should Hear" for Amazon. You will want to read his explanation of why Boston's debut makes his list.

THE DITTY BOPS: Amanda and Abby (left) are touring their new album by bicycle -- and blogging it, with plenty of pics and embedded YouTube videos. That's the famous World's Largest Ball of Twine in the picture above. You can stream their nifty Americana from MySpace.

PLATONISM IN POP: London's Telegraph uses Pop Idol (the UK model for American Idol) as a springboard to argue that creativity is overrated in art and what is wrong about their educational system.

THE ESSEX GREEN: NPR calls the band "classic without sounding retro," though I would add Americana to the list of sounds mixed into the band's tuneful sonic stew. You can stream a set with an interview from the World Cafe.

CAPTAIN BEEFHEART: XTC popmeister Andy Partridge makes unlikely cameos in this Guardian article, in which the writer details his journey into the avant-garde musical world of Don Van Vliet.

YOUR GUIDE TO GOTH MUSIC, courtesy of Stylus.

LOVE STINKS: The New York Sun has a piece o­n Ruined Music, a site featuring essays about music destroyed by bad memories. Sadly, I cannot hook you up with a copy of Ben Folds' "Song For The Dumped."

MAD MEL UPDATE: VH1's Best Week Ever has a must-see remix of Gibson's Signs trailer, with an ending more shocking than the original. Meanwhile, Will Farrell blames the Amish for causing most of the wars in the world today.

THE McCARTNEYS: Sir Paul is making late night visits and calls to friends of his estranged wife Heather Mills to convince them he's not such a bad guy. A lengthy piece in the Daily Mail reports that McCartney has frozen their joint bank account after allegedly discovering that she withdrew around £1million in o­ne month. He also changed the locks o­n their London home. Read the whole thing.

TOM-KAT UPDATE: Paramount is not backing any more Cruise movies until he faces a "financial adjustment and reality check." "Right now," said an insider close to the negotiations, "he is simply too expensive to employ."

BRADGELINA: Pitt publicly extols the joys of fatherhood, but some are raising questions about his back-to-back filming schedule while Jolie is home with the three kids.

JUDE LAW and SIENNA MILLER have reportedly split for good, because she can't get over his affair with his children's nanny, according to a friend of the actress.

GWYNETH PALTROW is thinking of having plastic surgery to repair the lumps and bumps of her post-baby figure. In the meantime, she's got a gig filming a commercial for Korean clothing line Bean Pole.

JESSICA SIMPSON claims that her new album is not about her failed marriage to Nick Lachey. The fact that the video for the single, "A Public Affair," features her stealing a Lachey lookalike from Maria Menunous -- who was Entertainment Tonight's Latina infobabe before current Lachey girlfriend Vanessa Minnillo -- is purely coincidental.

DAKOTA FANNING: Investors have pulled cash out of the controversial movie Hounddog, perhaps realizing that there isn't a big market for showing a 12-year-old girl getting raped, and that pedophiles are not a great target audience.

JENNA JAMESON: The porn superstar's husband has been accused of assaulting a topless dancer performing in Jameson's Arizona club. I'm sure this rumor is totally unrelated to the rumor noted here yesterday about Jameson taking up with rock star Dave Navarro.

ARNOLD SCHWARZENEGGER is getting support for re-election as Gov. of CA from Steven Spielberg, Jeffrey Katzenberg and Jerry Zucker, again splitting the typically reliable liberal Hollywood community.

DIE HARD: The music video. For those unfamiliar with the trilogy, I should note there are spoilers and the bridge is probably NSFW.

IRAQ: At ITM, Mohammed writes about the was panic -- both from facts and rumor -- affects his neighborhood in Baghdad, which is among the most violent. Iraqi PM al-Maliki criticized a pre-dawn air and ground attack o­n a stronghold of radical Shiite cleric Muqtada al-Sadr and his Mahdi Army militia. Which makes sense if you know that al-Maliki relies heavily o­n al-Sadr for political support. At least the AP's Antonio Castaneda is o­n the scene to report that it's really hot in Iraq in the summer. And the L.A. Times can report o­n the clever insurgents in Ramadi, while ignoring the partial success the Coalition is having there. Apparently, it's news to the media that the parties to a conflict will change their tactics to adapt to their opponent's tactics, and so o­n.

MIDEAST CONFLICT and the MEDIA: Reuters withdrew all 920 photographs by a freelance Lebanese photog from its database o­n Monday after concluding that not o­nly did he manipulate a photo of the aftermath of an Israeli air strike o­n suburban Beirut, but he also doctored a photo of an Israeli F-16 fighter to increase the number of flares dropped by the plane from o­ne to three. Reuters fails to tell its readers that it originally called these flares "missiles."  As Reuters continues to have to 'fess up o­n these photos, it will want to take a look at Hajj's bridge photos -- and what a former New York Times photog syas about them. It will also want to take a look at these photos of the same building supposedly destroyed twice, weeks apart, with a cameo from the women noted here yesterday.

MIDEAST CONFLICT and the MEDIA II: Reuters is merely the most glaring example of the media's coverage of this story. There was yesterday's uncritical relaying of casualty estimates that got revised down from 40 to 1 (and earlier from 56 to 28 in Qana). There is Washington Post writter Tom Ricks going o­n CNN and casually accusing Israel of allowing Hezbollah to retain some of it's firepower so they can continue to have a sort of moral equivalency in their operations in Lebanon, along with the unsupported trope that "there's some belief from our reporters that they have occasionally targeted the media." Good luck finding his stories o­n those topics in the paper, where he might actually have to have proper sourcing. At Protein Wisdom, Jeff Goldstein deconstructs a CNN story that is sadly all too typical of the coverage of this conflict.  But don't take my word for it -- just read the photo captions of the major wire services and note the percentage of times a strike in Lebanon is identified as coming from Israel, "Israeli bombardment," etc. versus the percentage of times Israelis are identified as being hit by "rockets" or "rocket attacks" that do not expressly identify the attacks as an attack by Hezbollah or Hamas.  Many times the captions do not even mention Hezbollah.

ARMADILLOS are feating o­n tasty red fire ants near Nashville, but they may want to look both ways before crossing.

POSSUM FEST! It's apparently the hot spot for vote-seeking Florida politicos. I guess it's a welcome break from the rubber chicken circuit.

THE NIGERIAN PUPPY SCAM: It's like all of the past Nigerian scams, but with non-existent puppies.

A DOG IN THE FRIDGE: People moving out of an apartment really need to check that before they leave.

TRUMPETER SWANS nest in Illinois for the first time since 1847. Columnated ruins domino.

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Lollapalooza, The Black Keys, Death From Above 1979, and horny Manatees   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Monday, August 07, 2006 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: kbade

Karl

NOW that you mention it, I am ready for some football...

YEP, it's that time of the week again. BONUS: A bit of "Nowhere Man."

ARTHUR LEE of Love passed away, as I noted (with audio and video links)o­n Friday; ChartAttack lists 12 reasons why he was cool.

LOLLAPALOOZA: Jon Pareles sorta blogged the fest for The New York Times, with some interesting stuff o­n corporate sponsorship and Perry Farrell's influence in selecting the bands. Scott from Stereogum attended and posted pics of the Raconteurs, My Morning Jacket, Ryan Adams, MTV babes and more, along with video of The Raconteurs, The Flaming Lips and Kanye West. You may also want to check out DaveMN's flickr set for Flaming Lips photos -- in addition to the bubble, the confetti and the balloons, it looks like the band staged a version of Santa Claus vs. The Martians, with guest appearances from Superman, Wonder Woman and Captain America. Chicagoist has more photo sets.

SLEATER-KINNEY played o­ne of its last shows at Lollapallooza. Slate has posted a feature o­n the riot grrrl band. You can stream last week's DC gig from NPR.

GNARLS BARKLEY played Chicago's House of Blues before Lollapalooza. Stereogum reports that the band covered "There Is An End" by The Greenehornes with Holly Golightly," which is a nifty recognition that two of The Greenehornes are in The Raconteurs, who have been covering Gnarls' "Crazy" o­n tour.

NEW PIXIES TRACKS? Contrary to prior reports, maybe so.

TEGAN AND SARA cavort with animated chimps in "Monday, Monday, Monday." Which is o­ne more Monday than the Mamas and Papas could handle.

THE KISS ARMY stormed Cleveland Saturday to demand that the band be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. The foundation that selects inductees is based in New York City, not at the museum.

SONGS BY BLACK PEOPLE SUNG BY WHITE PEOPLE are streaming at Parking Lot Cities. None of them are by Pat Boone.

JOHHNY MARR has joined Modest Mouse. The former Smiths axeman already had been collaborating with MM frontman Issac Brock.

THE BLACK KEYS have unleashed four new songs, ranging from their usual gritty blues-rock to trippier, Hendrix-ispired stuff, in advance of their new album in September. Pitchfork hooks you up with streams and downloads.

DEATH FROM ABOVE 1979 is dead, having achieved the level of commercial success the duo had sounht when they started as "a punk band with pop pretentions." You can stream some from the Hype Machine. Among the mouners will be the critically acclaimed Cansei De Ser Sexy, the fizzy Brazilian pop group that led with "Let's Make Love and Listen Death from Above" (though I preferred other CSS tracks).

THE ROLLING STONES are charging the members of opening act Kasabian £150 each if they want to watch the Stones with the fans. Though Kasabian singer Tom Meighan thinks it's "probably Americans who are running it, not Jagger," it sounds exactly like an idea hatched by London School of Economics grad.

MAD MEL UPDATE: So how is Mel Gibson's rehab going? Pretty well, if we're discussing his career rehab program. Some of Gibson's Hollywood pals -- including Jodie Foster and Patrick Swayze -- defend him against charges of anti-Semitism. It turns out that the married Mel is not above hitting o­n the occasional Jewish model, either. Two more prominent American Jewish groups are offering to help Gibson, while the Jewish Los Angeles County Sheriff's Deputy who arrested him doesn't want to ruin his career.

WEEKEND BOX OFFICE: Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby took the pole position with 47 million, helped by smart marketing led by Will Farrell. It wasn't bad, but it was no Anchorman, which, beneath its relentless stupidity (and I mean that in a good way), also had something to say about sexism in the workplace in the 70s. And narration by former Chitown 70s anchor Bill Curtis. The animated Barnyard came in second with 16 million, which is alright o­n a per-screen basis, though it may need home video to make back its 51 mill budget. Pirates hung in third place, placing it eighth o­n the all-time money-makers list. Miami Vice dropped a precipitous 62 percent to fourth place, while The Descent -- the rare horror film liked by critics -- made 8.8 million, with a good per screen average and a budget of o­nly 6.5 million.

THE McCARTNEYS: Sir Paul denies he has "abandoned" estranged wife Heather Mills. The former Fab has also reportedly fired off a furious legal letter to Mills warning her to stay clear of his personal possessions, and sacked seven people at his NY offices, amid speculation it was due to their connections to her.

BRITNEY SPEARS is desperate to pick the brains of actor Charlie Sheen over his hugely successful children's clothing range. Sheen reportedly believes it would be fun to work with Britney, which I buy in light of his rumored penchant for women dressed as schoolgirls.

MADONNA: A British health and safety officer overruled her diva demand that the air conditioning be shut off at Wembley Arena after some fans started to faint, with temperatures hitting the high 90s Fahrenheit.

BARBRA STREISAND was spotted outside a plastic surgery clinic, but maybe they also train beekeepers in there.

TOM-KAT UPDATE: If those icky tabloids are to be believed, Holmes had a breakdown, in part due to being isolated from her family while being inducted into Scientology, and in part from the controversy over her baby, Suri ó who has still not been seen publicly -- but who has reportedly been seen by Penelope Cruz, who allegedly dated Cruise in the past. Other reports claim that Cruise doesn't want Holmes working.

JESSICA SIMPSON: The pneumatic blonde's creepy dad-manager is sabotaging her friendship with Desperate Housewives co-star Eva Longoria because the latter gets more attention that Jessica when the two are out together.

DAVE NAVARRO and CARMEN ELECTRA BREAK-UPDATE: The ever-reliable Perez Hilton claims the guitarist is seeing porn superstar Jenna Jameson, though she is married to her business partner. Jameson just became the first adult star to be immoratlized in wax, at Madame Tussauds in Las Vegas.

THE UNDER-REPORTED SCANDAL: The press reported that billionaire financier Jeffrey Epstein was arrested for soliciting sex from a masseuse at his Florida mansion at the end of July. But the involvement of underaged girls and perhaps a Yugoslavian sex slave and orgies with Nobel prize-winners have gone largely unreported, causig gossip sites like Jossip to remark: "Maybe since he's friends with Bill Clinton, Ron Burkle, and Donald Trump, accusations that he's raping little girls can be omitted from the news."

MIDEAST CONFLICT and the MEDIA: Reuters dropped a freelance Lebanese photographer who doctored an image of the aftermath of an Israeli air strike o­n Beirut. Yet they also uncritically printed the photog's facially ridiculous explanation. Maybe Reuters will get around to explaining the photog's other doctored photos. But maybe not. Reuters is treating Lebanese Parliament Speaker Nabih Berri (one of the most powerful supporters of the Syrian occupation and who heads a militia allied to Hezbollah) as speaking for the entire country, instead of Fouad Seniora. The press is also treating the killing of three Chinese UN peacekeepers by Hezbollah as a much smaller story than when UN peacekeepers were killed by Israeli fire. The AP and Reuters seem to have photographs of the same woman with her house bombed weeks apart in Beirut (just bad luck, I'm sure).

MIDEAST CONFLICT and IRAQ: Ali Akbar Mohatashemi, the former Iranian ambassador to Syria and the founding father of Hezbollah, admits that Hezbollah is a main element of Iran's military. Iran is racing to resupply Hezbollah across the Syrian border ahead of a possible cease-fire being ironed out this week at the UN. In the longer term, Iran wants to supply Hezbollah with surface-to-air missile systems. ITM's Omar Fadhil, writing in the Philadelphia Inquirer, notes the shared Shiite fanatacism of Iranian Pres. Ahmadinejad and the Shiite cleric Muqtada al-Sadr in Iraq is taking a higher profile in Baghdad, with further thoughts at ITM. Patrick Lang, the former head of human intelligence collection and Middle East intelligence at the DIA, notes that Siite fanatics could disrupt US supply lines in Iraq. Meanwhile, Iran plans to expand its uranium enrichment, in defiance of a UN Security Council resolution setting an Aug. 31 deadline for the Islamic republic to halt enrichment.

CUBE-SHAPED WATERMELONS from Brazil are to be sold in the UK. It would make them easier to stack.

DON'T TRY THIS AT HOME: Friends don't let friends drink and try sword-swallowing.

THE ARTIS ZOO in Amsterdam messed with Tania the polar bear's head by blasting her enclosure with a snow cannon in August.

NO PET LEFT BEHIND bill has passed the US Senate.

HORNY MANATEES are cruising the shallow waters off Longboat Key, FL.

THE IVORY-BILLED WOODPECKER, thought to be extinct, is being sought by NASA.

THE COW WHISPERER knows what makes cows happy. Please, get your mind out of the gutter -- he's like Dr. Frickin' Doolittle.

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