HMMMMMMMMMM. I don't remember this day very well. I woke up at some point. ......... blank ................. Hmm. Well, I can tell you that in the late afternoon I went over to do another interview at a radio station - this one's called RRR. Apparently it's like if WUOG was really awesome and really big and in a really big city and a ton of people listened to it and enjoyed listening to it. Mega indie radio station or something. I don't know. But this was one was only in Melbourne, not national. I did an interview with this dude who's supposedly some kind of man-about-town influential dude who books bands for a lot of awesome festivals. He said he'd heard us before and thought it was alright but then he saw us at Laneway and said we were the only band he could engage with. Said a few times that we were the best band at the festival. Whoa. The interview was okay. I was hungover. These guys like to fixate on the reggae aspect of the band and it's hard to say "well our new album isn't very reggae at all and plus I don't even know much about reggae." Makes me feel like a dipshit. But the dude was really cool. I invited him to the BBQ I was heading to after the interview and he showed up.
That's right, our Australian hosts organized a huge BBQ for us in a park. Tons of awesome food. Awesome beer in a bottle. Aussie Rules Football. American Rules Football. British Rules Football. The Brunittes were there too - all in all like 40 people or something. We travel in a big crew. Oh yeah, and that was my first glimpse of the megabats of Australia. HOLY MOUNTAIN OF SHIT those bats are life-threateningly big.
I took it home early. My throat had been killing me and I was pretty bummed because I thought after a practice and two shows I had already destroyed my voice (I had vocal cord damage after our fall tour straight into recording and saw various voice professionals about it). Turns out I was just getting sick! It sucks to be sick on vacation but I considered it to be the lesser evil.
¶ posted by Jerkwater Johnson at 3:47 PM
Hey you: Hillary and I have started a new comics blog. It's called Shazhmmm, and will eventually house semi-regular conversations which we shall periodically engage in concerning recent (or even not so recent) comics we have both read. Feel free to read the c-word as "graphic novels" if that makes you feel better and/or smarter.
Jeez. This shit was over a month ago. I need to get on this.
So on this day I woke with a serious hangover from the previous night's festivities. Actually I was woken up in bed by our two Australian label bosses Marky and Nate. I threw on some clothes, took a berrocca tablet (kinda like emergen-C but they take it for hangovers over there), and left with them to go down to the JJJ studios for an interview. JJJ is like if 99X or Live 105 were a station that was nationwide. I was doing an interview with Richard Kingsmilll or something like that - who was compared to the John Peel of Australia or something insane like that. Who knows why the hell he wanted to interview me. Nate made us get there 30 minutes early and the security guy looked at us like that was the first time he had ever seen a musician show up early. The 60 or 70 year old man told us to leave and come back and gave us some nearby cafes to go to. Some pretty good fodder to make fun of Nate about.
Anyway, I got back and did the interview. It was taped and the DJ was in Sydney. It was pretty hilarious to hear him play Ice Water over national radio. The ridiculous guitar solo into an even more ridiculous sax solo. The interview went okay. I was super hungover and tired, so I wasn't really on top of it. The famous DJ was really nice though and seemed to genuinely be a fan of our ej's.
After the interview we headed to the Laneway festival in downtown Melbourne. A laneway is an alley in Australia. What they do is block off an alley or two and set up a stage and people cram into the alley and there's so many people that they go all the way down the block. The Melbourne one was set up with the main stage blocking off a major street, a 2nd stage blocking off a big alley, a 3rd stage blocking off a smaller alley, and a stage in a venue that was attached to the 2nd stage alley. We had a dayroom in a hotel across the street and I went there first. Our room was being shared with Starrrrrrrrz and a coupla Australian bands that I can't remember. Every time we'd get to the festivals one of the workers would bring us our rider (which only consisted of beer as opposed to other bands), and would be amazed when they saw how much beer we got. They'd usually bring us water too out of pity.
Starrrrrrrrz were having a massive band fight ("I don't want everyone to just fucking show up 15 minutes before we're supposed to play" - haha dude wouldn't last five seconds in Stirr Fryin'), so I left the bad vibes to check out the festival. We entered through the backstage entrance to the 2nd stage (where we were playing later that night) and it was so crowded that it took me 10 or 15 minutes just to walk down the alley out to the main street where the main stage was. It was insanely crowded in every inch of the festival with no escape. Bracken Satchel Scene were about to start on the main stage so I watched a few songs of theirs but it was too hot and crowded so I left. I went down the smaller alley and Don Deekon was about to start so I checked him out. He talked for about 15 minutes before he started and had people taking a knee and shaking their fist in vain at the sky and doing group chants and shit -- right in my wheelhouse. Really funny dude. Then he started playing and it was a bit much for me to handle after a few songs. It would definitely grow on me by the time the trip was over though. Plus, I had to take a whiz (which I don't even understand how the normal festival-goers even went to the bathroom that shit was so crowded) and drink some more brews to get into jamzone.
Back in the dayroom, I broke out a duty free bottle of whiskey and we were jamming on that. Then one of the festival workers cleared the rubbish off our table which included the cap to my fifth of whiskey. I guess that meant we had to finish the whole bottle before we left to play since we couldn't transport that shit. I think Phil poured some in a cup to bring on stage and then we finished off the bottle pretty much between the two of us. Fast. Oh yeah, I should also mention that while reading the itinerary that morning Gus and Tara happened upon a free boogeyboard on the sidewalk. The itinerary instructed me to "literally crowd surf". I was a little bit ticked, not because I was afraid of crowdsurfing on a boogie board and breaking my leg, but because I was afraid of having people make fun of me after I broke my leg. I will never hear the end of how injury-prone I am after my two freak accidents that happened pretty close to one another a year ago.
Time to jam. We entered behind our stage as Starrrrz was finishing. We tetrised ourselves on stage with amazing efficiency but the sound dudes couldn't get all the mics working and were bumbling around for half an hour. We started thirty minutes late, but as we took the stage they told us to just play our set. The alley had about fifty people in it when we started, and we probably knew most of them. Guess what? We were playing against Feyst on the main stage. That's a shit sandwich to swallow. But then something weird happened. As soon as we started the Following The Itinerary chant (I think this is what we started with), a fullblown river of people started flowing in. And we just jammed it. HARD. I'm talking one of our best shows of all time. Friends in the audience said that people all around them were on their cellphones imploring their friends to get the heck down and see us.
A few songs in, Phil started jamming with the boogie board ("Still Flyin'" taped across the blank side) and pitched it out into the audience. They started throwing it straight up into the air like a beach ball and it would nosedive on top of unknowing victims. By this point the alley was packed all the way back. Probably a couple thousand people? After the song was done I told them that we as a band do not advocate death so we'll need the boogie board back. Proceeded to jam the hell out of that alley. Then I had noticed a girl with a stuffed monkey in the front row (who later turned out to be in the Brunittes) and threw the boogie board to her and told the crowd I wanted that monkey to ride the boogie board all the way to Feyst and back to us. So the monkey on the boogie board went back so far it vanished from sight.
Soon after that our set was dwindling down and I made an announcement that I seriously needed the boogie board for a specific song and I honestly needed it back. Nothing. It got to the point where we only had two songs left - Ghost Town and Smokies. Smokies was the only song that had a large enough jammout section where I could leave the stage for a long period of time. I said that we had two songs left but that since I needed the boogie board for one of them, we were just going to skip it and play our last song. BOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO. Then someone started screaming at me from the side of the alley about 100 yards up. A dude had retrieved the boogie board (turns out he was a dude from Okraville Raver and he went into the venue that was connected to the our alley and got the boogie board on the 2nd floor of the venue). I pointed to the boogie board and the crowd went apeshit. I explained the boogie board situation and how I'd broken my foot during a show in a cave in Sweden and to please save me from the ridicule. We broke into Smokies and during the end of the song I literally crowdsurfed. Maybe the first time that's ever been done?
Here's some proof:
After exiting the stage I realized a shitstorm of semifamous bands were watching us for some reason. Okraville Raver and Brunittes and Don Deeken in the crowd. Clappy Hands and Bracken Satchel Scene and Kool Kidz and this Atlanta band Monchister Archestra watching us from side/backstage... Why the hell were all of them watching us? I have no idea. The dude from BSS said Feyst was too boring so he went to see us. Everyone fucking loved it. So weird.
So after our set Phil was sloppy wasted. We jammed the SHIT out of that show. People hung out in our day room for a bit and then most people headed out for dinner. I felt silly not watching more music so I went back to our stage and saw most of the Kool Kidz. Pretty good. Not exactly sure why they're popular with the indie hipster crowd as opposed to other rap, but still they were pretty good.
After the Kool Kidz I met up with everybody outside of the restaurant and we headed to the official afterparty. Big secret warehouse thing. When we got there it was pretty empty and lame BUT the drinks were free at that point and there was a big screen projecting waves so some of us starting surfing in front of the screen. Ice and I ended up doing some absynthe shots or something weird like that. It literally made my whole body numb. The place soon got packed and was sort of fun. But then a VIP room within the big warehouse opened up that they were only letting people with artist passes into. The DJ was a little bit better and the room was smaller I guess. So that was kinda the afterafterparty. After a while of drinking and dancing and partying it was dwindling down to nothing. 4am or so?
We took it to Ice and SM's hotel room for the afterafterafterparty. I fell down on the bed face down with my backpack still on. 12 or 13 hours of drinking had put me in shutdown mode. Some funny shit happened involving Gary trying to squeeze back into the hotel room through the window. After that we went to Gus and Evelyn's house for the afterafterafterafterparty. Whoa. Quite a day.
¶ posted by Jerkwater Johnson at 4:53 PM
Apparently Matt Morris likes to terrorize small children. And the Marlins pitchers beat each other up and swing from chandeliers.
¶ posted by darkness at 9:28 AM
It's kinda weird to watch an official MLB game on tv while getting dressed for work. It's cool they're playing in Japan, but this schedule is totally screwed. So they're playing two games that actually count, then return to America and play three games that don't, and then 160 more games that actually count. Confusing.
Anyway, next Monday will probably be the first opening day I've worked on since 2004, at least. I've taken off the last two, and was in Mexico in '05. With the Braves' first game on Sunday night, though, there's no need to stay home and get drunk on a Monday afternoon.
¶ posted by darkness at 7:52 AM
Monday, March 24, 2008
AUZ TOUR 2/23
Woke up pretty dang early on this day of days. Tshaq and Gus came and picked me up early on and we went back to Shaqers' house and met one of the best dogs and ate some pancakes. Then we took it to Luna Park because the itinerary told us so. I went in the Tomb Raider haunted house. Pretty good haunted house. Kids were coming out the exit in near heart attacks so I think I might've been expecting too much. Still pretty reliability exciting and frightening. Then Olsonkroken and I jammed this crazy ride that basically loops around and suspends you upside down for 5 seconds at a time.
After that we went for some fish n' chips so Phil could suck on a sav. "Suck of the sav" is Aussie slang for "you don't say!" (I think?) or something, and we were asking what a sav was and they said sausage. So then we started intentionally butchering it and saying "suck on a sav" or "suck off a sav" and then Phil ended up doing it.
Went to our show at the East Brunzwick Club after that. Nice place. I met our sax player there - an awesome awesome dude name Doyle Corndog. Soundchecked and then went across the street to a warehouse where this stranger was cooking up roo burgers for the entire band!?!? A friend of Izzo and Gus'. That's just the type of shit that happened to us over there. "Oh I'll just cook dinner for the entire band that I don't even know". What the fuck. So I ate a roo burger. Kangaroo tastes like a cross between ground beef and meatloaf. Pretty good. Felt weird to eat a kangaroo, although apparently that's the politically correct meat to eat since there are too many kangaroos hopping around and then don't destroy the environment like cows do.....
Ran back to the show to make sure I didn't miss Fred Astereo, our buddy Stanley's band. I'd seen him play solo a coupla times in SF, but when he's on his home turf he's got a full band, allowing Stanley ChuckChuckChuckles (his legal middle name) to wield his guitar like an axe or baseball bat and stuff guitar tuners down his pants and basically roll around the stage acting like a doof. Terrific stuff.
We were on next, and by this point the joint was pretty packed. 300 people or something. I can't really remember too much about our performance - not because I was too drunk but because nothing too crazy happened. It was a really good show. Birddog told me afterwards that he figured he'd seen about 1/4 of our shows and that that one was in the top 3. So pretty good. Just too many memorable things that came after it that made this one so nondescript.
The one thing I can remember is that at one point during the show Marky snatched the microphone from me and started talking about how excited he was that we were in Australia. Next thing you know Marty's on stage with a platter full of shots. This was from a secret section of our tour itinerary. Some people in the band are wimps (and Yosh, in his dedication to holding the shitstorm at bay will not do too much drinking before or during a show), so that lead to me being forced to take two shots at the same time. This made me pretty drunk later on.
Lorksmiths jammed it as hard as they usually do, which is pretty dang on hard. They even learned Ed Sammitch Hands, a song I'd requested in vain on the East Coast Mind Whip, and dedicated it to me.
After the show we took it to Cafe Romantica, which was simultaneously the stupidest and best late night hangout spot around. Imagine a large, white, really brightly flourescently lit crappy pizza place kinda reminiscent of a humongous frozen yogurt shop or something, and partying there at 3am. I was wasted that night. I think the two shots hit and I went from there.
¶ posted by Jerkwater Johnson at 5:48 PM
Jam us a Jam request...
So we're getting our song list together for the Delirium/Francerversary and dont want to leave anything out that people want to hear. Leave a comment on jam or jams you would like us to jam. If its a hard jam, then you'll have to pay us in ectoplasm & hot dogs to hear that jam.
¶ posted by Zazz at 3:19 PM
1) Saw Acid Mothers Temple on Thursday night. Worst time out of the 8 or 9 times I've seen them. Dont know what it was, but it seemed like they were phoning it in and not really into it, maybe they were tired from SXSW. Plus they played song for song almost the exact same set I saw them play the last time through. Had more fun jammin' Johnny's late night with DJ Elliott slammin' us with some pizza eating jams.
2) Alternative Apparel is way better than American Apparel, get used to it. Despite all the dumb model reasons, the shirts are just fucking better. Softer and dont fucking stretch all the way to your mid thigh. I hate shirts that are long in the body and come way down below the waist. That shit looks so gay if you arent a model. These just sits perfect and feels ace. Stopped by their factory to save some money on shipping and pick up the 60 some odd shirts we're using to make new France shirts for the delirium/anniversary. They will look rad.
3) Hung with Oz (aka lil' publix sub) all weekend. He's a damn gem of a dog. Already learned a ton and has figured out that ringing the "poochie bells" on the door means he gets to go out and pee. He's rad. Come visit him if you want.
4) Saturday night jammed for Robin's birthday. Night Moves Gold played a sexifyin' set in Robin's basement. the only light came from the candle's glow and the bass was soothing your soul. Played some hits and a bunch of new ones which you can find up at their myspace page. Favorite new jam has to be "Get Inside The Car" - that god damned 70s keyboard and the bass WERE JAMMIN THE SHIT OUT OF US on Saturday (that and sugachurch body). It was all you could do to not jam a dance. Also think i talked them into playing at mine and L's 4th of July party.
5) Sunday confirmed that my brackets are totally fucked. I am either last or second to last in every pool I entered.
6) Easter pork tenderloin. Cant top it.
7) Death Wish is nearing completion and is good enough to be released by a real label. Battling for best ep we've done.
I have seen what many said they never dared / Oh, in a fantasy
I now have a fantasy baseball team. I guess I've always had this fantasy baseball team, or at least have had it since 2000, or so. I like to think it needs me as much as I need it.
We drafted last Thursday. Here's my team. The K's denote my keepers. We've got ten of 'em this year, and are bumping up to 15 for '09. No more keeper / franchiser distinction, no more minors, just straight-up keepers.
Honestly, I think I blew the draft a little. I took a few hyped rookies a few rounds too early, and missed out on most of the middling starters with whom I had hoped to pad out my rotation. Thus I'm stuck with a mix of older, oft-injured guys and unproven young'uns. And Peralta is the worst starting SS in the league. My bullpen looks pretty good, though.
C: Geovanny Soto; JR Towles 1B: Adrian Gonzalez 2B: Brian Roberts (K) 3B: David Wright (K), Chone Figgins (K), Edwin Encarnacion SS: Jhonny Peralta OF: Nick Markakis (K), Delmon Young (K), Chris Young (K), Raul Ibanez, Jacoby Ellsbury
SP: Johan Santana (K), CC Sabathia (K), Tim Lincecum (K), Pedro Martinez, Randy Johnson, Johnny Cueto, Kevin Slowey, Manny Parra, Mark Prior RP: Joe Nathan (K), Jonathan Papelbon, CJ Wilson
¶ posted by darkness at 9:43 AM
Thursday, March 20, 2008
AUZ TOUR 2/22
So the best flight ever gave way to the worst airport ever. We landed at the Sydney airport and had an hour and a half layover before our flight to Melbourne. We went through customs and did the whole rigamarole. Time kept slipping away and we started suspecting we might miss our connection. We got to some new security checkpoint to recheck our bags and shit and the lady looked at our tickets and said "oh you're going to miss your flight- hoo hah" fart noise. Then we're waiting through the long line and the same lady starts rushing these metal bands through the line to make their flight. Why not us? When we went through like the third security checkpoint Yoshi was questioned about his metal discs (cymbals). Then we had to get on some bus to get driven to some other weird part of the airport. There was no way we could have ever in our wildest dreams.......... shit sorry this is really boring.
Anyway, we finally made it to Melbourne. Fucking sunny, perfect temperature. Izzo picked us up in T-Shaq's car and it was blasting the Pretty in Pink soundtrack, which was the perfect music to introduce us to 'Stralia. We drove straight to band practice. Because of our flight mishaps we missed four hours out of our six hour practice, so we really had to bear down and jam some serious jams to get the new people feeling right with the music. We had Gus from AIH filling Bren's role as 2nd drummer and harmony vocalist, Marky from Lorksmiths playing my guitar parts, and Mark from Jeht doing crazy dinosaur noises and shit (seriously). Plus we hadn't played with Lizeth in a while (flyinette) or T-Shaq (trombone, singing). But we pretty much ruled the practice and went through a coupla slabs (cases), so we knew we were doing things right.
Afterwards I went to my host Gus' house for a sec and then we went to meet people at Marky's girlfriend Christy's fashion show. We got there right as it ended and I saw a coupla pals there that I hadn't seen yet and met Nate, our Australian label boss who turned out to be one of the best dudes on earth and a nominee for Dude Hall of Fame. Afterwards we ate some chorizo pizza and went to a pub to meet some more dear friends and ordered pots of beer (stupid little tiny glasses of beer). You can order beer in about six different glass sizes and they all have different names, and the names change according to what part of the country you're in. Didn't turn out to be as big a problem as I anticipated though. Ehh, people were falling asleep at the bar and almost getting run over by cars going the opposite way so we had sort of an early night.
¶ posted by Jerkwater Johnson at 3:27 PM
I was having a spirited conversation with someone recently about this and I am interested to know what the average is. I think I am a binge drinker, b/c I really only drink 2 nights a week around the weekend. Usually in a gathering/party/dudes jam atmosphere and Sundays I'll drink if there is football on. Be honest, for God's sake we all know Mez ain't one to judge!
THE KING OF KONG: A little too obviously biased in Wiebe’s favor, but still a fine documentary. I still believe that Donkey Kong is too hard to be fun or good, though. Give me Popeye any day of the week.
YEAR OF THE DOG: Good until the typical Mike White ridiculousness pops up near the end. I don’t know why a guy who’s genuinely good at subtle character development feels the need to extrapolate shit to an unbelievable extent. It happened with Chuck and Buck and it happens again here. Anyway, it’s a good movie up until that point. Not quite as heart-breaking as I was expecting, but I still made sure Oscar was on or near my lap for the entirety. Maybe the second or third time I’ve been able to tolerate Molly Shannon at all.
THE HOAX: I was optimistic about this one. It done let me down. It’s far too impressed with itself, and not nearly as clever or important as it wants us to think it is. Gere and Molina are both pretty good, but the rest of the movie fails them, especially when you follow up and see how significantly they monkeyed with the real situation.
Q: Are you following the presidential race? A: Not at all.
Q:You’re not? You know there’s a Black guy running, Barack Obama and then there’s Hillary Clinton. A: His name is Barack?!
Q: Barack Obama, yeah. A: Barack?!
Q: Barack. A: What the fuck is a Barack?! Barack Obama. Where he from, Africa?
Q: Yeah, his dad is from Kenya. A: Barack Obama?
Q: Yeah. A: What the fuck?! That ain't no fuckin' name, yo. That ain't that nigga's name. You can't be serious. Barack Obama. Get the fuck outta here.
Q: You're telling me you haven't heard about him before. A: I ain't really paying much attention.
Q: I mean, it's pretty big if a Black... A: Wow, Barack! The nigga's name is Barack. Barack? Nigga named Barack Obama. What the fuck, man?! Is he serious? That ain't his fuckin' name. Ima tell this nigga when I see him, "Stop that bullshit. Stop that bullshit" [laughs] "That ain't your fuckin' name." Your momma ain't name you no damn Barack.
DIDN'T EXIST! TIME WARP! Through the magic of crossing the international date line, we lost Thursday, February 21st. Left Wednesday, got there Friday. In the air for 15 hours or something. Whoa.
¶ posted by Jerkwater Johnson at 1:19 PM
AUZ TOUR 2/20
Alright. Man alive. People keep bugging me to write something up for MEZ ECL on my trip. I'm just going to have to do a day by day account because writing it all up as one big chunk is too daunting and the reason why I haven't gotten around to this yet.
Day one is easy. Phil, Maria, Yosh, and I (I think that's all*) flew out of SFO on Qantas. Let me tell you guys something about flying on an airplane: you're making a mistake unless you're on Qantas. You are also making a mistake if there's not a vacant seat between you and the next dude. You are also making a mistake if you don't have Phil sitting across the aisle from you laughing his head off at some TV show (more on this in a sec). You are also making a mistake if you don't have Yoshi sequestered to the opposite end of the plane. Dude snores.
Why Qantas? First thing they do is give you this bag thing that can go around your neck that contains socks amongst other things that you'd expect. Socks. I guess my ONLY complaint about Qantas is they give you too much shit. Pillow/blanket/bag/headphones/etc. Luckily there was a vacant seat next to me and me and the stranger dude just piled our Qantas shit in the seat. It was a big pile too.
Second thing is the headrest. Why the fuck why doesn't every airline do this? The headrest is malleable so you can mold your own head rest arrangement. My method was to fold both sides against my head like the seat became my own personal helmet.
Third, the service. Did I mention they passed out menus with a timeline on there telling you when the various services were available? Free drinks is a dying perk on international flights. Not on Qantas. When I was one of the only people still awake on the entire flight at 3am or so (but only 10pm AUS time - I didn't understand why more people didn't use this strategy), the plane was DARK. I pressed the flight attendant call button, and INSTANTANEOUSLY I saw a flashlight come out of the flight attendant lair. She asked if I needed anything and I sheepishly ordered a beer (totally seemed like bedtime for the entire plane). This actually seemed to make her happy and she brought back some pretzels to go with it. Not only could you order a beverage at any time, you could also order a snack at any time, as stated on the menu/timeline thing.
Fourth, the fucking screen on the back of the seat and what comes on it. They have some sort of database/harddrive thing on the plane with a computer or something under each seat. What this means is you can pick between literally 30 or so movies (I think I could be underestimating), 30 or so TV shows, a CD library, a bunch of radio stations, and 10 or so games (the arm rests have a remote control that detaches and turns into a video game controller - which you've probably seen before). Whatever form of entertainment you choose gets downloaded into your chair and shown on your screen, whenever you feel like it. I watched Michael Clayton and part of Beowulf and a few episodes of Extras.
For all you cynics, I've flown overseas two other times within the last year and a half, on two different airlines, and they are NOTHING compared to Qantas. Nothing.
Blood On The Walls - Liferz Pretty good, but i'm just not that into them as most. There are 3-4 amazing jams on there, the rest seemed like it was a little rushed in the studio. Which is their thing i guess, bash you over the head and hit the road. A few of the songs with the girl singing sound like slow sludgers that Kim Gordon would sing. All of the dude's songs are pretty good though. C+
Stephen Malkmus - Real Emotional Trash Really damn good. Dark and I just had a chat recently where we agreed that SM is an underappreciated guitar player. He shreds on this album. I think its better than his last one which I didnt care for much at all. No frilly stuff here, its all straight ahead head bustin. There is also a 10 minute song on here, which is the best one on the album, i think. B+
Vampire Weekend - s/t Everyone said the songs that leaked before the album was released were the best songs and the rest of the album was a letdown. Not true. There is some really really good n' complex shit on here - example - M79 is way way more complex than anything i expected on this sugar caked album. I hope they dont get major backlash for being prep dudes. Ellie said they were really damn good in ATL the day after they played SNL (weird). B+
Acid Mothers Temple & The Cosmic Inferno - Ominous From The Cosmic Inferno You love em or you hate em, but damn they just keep getting better if you like em. Their last two releases (including this one) have been some MOST RIGHTEOUS SHIT! This record is released off a small label in Brazil and instead of the brutal scorching attack of normal Cosmic Inferno records, this one is washed out with long periods of spooky Ghost-esque folk ragas. Excellent record that is slightly long in the tooth. B
Nada Surf - Lucky Wondering how they would follow up "This Weight Is A Gift" (which lets be honest if you havent heard you are TRULY missing out - one of the best records of the 2000's), and hoping they didnt flop on their ass. Well they didnt, this record seeps in deep. Not immediately as soul crushing as "Weight" but this one creepadeeps up on you with songs sounding like the deep cuts from "Weight" or something. All the songs sound like NS but are more sophisticated - they dont immediately go for the hook. Last two songs lose me, but overall its aces. B
You are not ready for this album. This is the long lost CLASSIC YACHT ROCK album. I'm dead fucking serious, this outdoes the Dan, McD, Ambrosia, all of them. Ok back story on these dudes and this album is that they were song writers for Air Supply. Nuff said. Finally they decided to step out on their own and write their own record, but missed the short Yacht Rock window and their label shelved the record before it came out in 1982. This record has bent my mind. I listen to it 2-3 times a week and have done so for the past 2 months. Hits like "Thank You For The Party", "Survivor", "Excitement of the New", & "Nite Music" sound like uncharted oceans waiting to be yachted upon. Fuckin make you up a cool Pina C and sit back, your ass is grass. Night Moves Gold, I expect to hear one of these songs covered the next time i see you guys. Trust me on this - you wont be able to put it down. A+
1. I thought "Chauncey Billups" was a character from The Andy Griffith Show. Or a Faulkner novel.
2. I had no idea Rasheed Wallace still played. And he led the Pistons in scoring, too.
3. Only one Bulldog on either team, Jarvis Hayes, and I thought that would make it hard to root against the Pistons. But it didn't. And I'm pretty sure he never took the court.
4. Compared to MLB (the only professional sport I've attended live in the last 10 years, or so), an NBA game is total sensory overload. We sat down a half-hour before the game started and there wasn't a single moment of peace or quiet the entire night. And I'm not complaining about that; it was pretty damn awesome, like a home run celebration or a wrestling ring entrance stretched out for three straight hours. By the end of the night I was exhausted. They run these amazing videos on the jumbotron in the fourth quarter, where Boston players exhort the crowd to make some noise. Kevin Garnett looked like he was fucking possessed in his video, he was so intense. Some other guy (I didn't recognize him and didn't catch his name, it wasn't Pierce or Ray Allen) was even more insane in his video, squatting and cackling like a demon with eyes opened wide as if to devour us. It kind of scared me.
5. I'm positive last night's game is not useful for forming accurate opinions of the standard live NBA experience. The Hawks were in Boston on Sunday, and I'm sure the game wasn't half as exciting. Allyn and I would definitely go back to a game, if we could find cheap enough tickets, but I'm sure it'd be a huge let-down from last night.
6. Pierce was the most popular Celtic, based on the number of jerseys and shirts I saw folks wearing; Garnett, Allen, and Bird were all closely grouped together after that.
7. A random shot of Bill Russell sitting courtside got as loud an ovation as any of the player introductions.
I've been big on these dudes recently. New ep out on Sub Pop delivered last week. Full length out early summer. Touring with Blitzen Trapper right now and hitting ATL - March 20th at the DU. Myspace here with a few other songs. Below is a song off the full length and will slither its way into your ipod quick style. Watch it.
I'm going to an NBA game tonight, for the first time since 1992, or so. Never attended a game that didn't involve the Hawks. I know the Celtics are awesome this year, but apparently the Pistons are pretty damn good, too. Hopefully it'll be alright, and not boring as shit.
¶ posted by darkness at 11:22 AM
Tuesday, March 04, 2008
Movie Watch: Watchin' Movies
SEMI-PRO: Better than I expected. It really did feel like two different movies, though. It's like a typical absurdist Will Ferrell comedy sprouted up around a capable, if unspectacular, Slap-Shot homage. It's a little off-putting, and the movie would probably be better had it stuck simply to either style. Disjointedness aside, though, it's still pretty damn funny, and more mature and foul-mouthed than the last few Ferrell movies. The highlight is probably Andrew Daly, who I've never heard of, but who's excellent as a stereotypical '70's play-by-play man. It's like he's channelling Gordon Solie at times. And about a third of the way into the movie there's a poker scene that's one of the best scenes in any Ferrell movie to date, and that has almost nothing to do with the rest of the movie. Anyway, I'd probably recommend this for a matinee, and definitely for a rental.
JUSTICE LEAGUE: THE NEW FRONTIER: This is an animated adaptation of Darwyn Cooke's fantastic DC: The New Frontier comic from a few years back (and which I wrote about here). The comic remains probably my favorite mainstream superhero thing of the decade, and still blows me away after repeated readings. The movie is fine on its own, but doesn't quite do the comic justice. The brief 75-minute runtime probably has a lot to do with that; much of the nuance and many of the subplots have been dropped, including the comic's amazing prologue that made reference to both the Losers and The War That Time Forgot. It still focuses primarily on Hal Jordan, aka the white Green Lantern, with attention paid to J'onn "Martian Manhunter" J'onzz, but most of the secondary stuff with characters like the Suicide Squad and the Challengers of the Unknown has been replaced with new content featuring heavy-hitters like Superman, Batman, and Wonder Woman. I can understand piling up the icons, since Warner obviously wants this dvd to sell, and the comic mostly features lesser known and/or unmarketable characters. Unfortunately the new scenes are generally the movie's worst moments, full of stilted dialogue and exposition dumps, and often feeling completely unnecessary. And much of the voice-acting is just bad, primarily David Boreanaz as Jordan and Lucy Lawless and Wonder Woman. Old Twin Peaks buds Miguel Ferrer and Kyle MacLachlan are great as J'onzz and Superman, respectively, and some of the other voice actors do fine work (Jeremy Sisto as Batman, Neil Patrick Harris as Barry "Flash" Allen, and John Heard as Ace Morgan, primarily). For the most part, though, the acting fails to make much of an impression. Still, the source material is strong enough to keep the movie from failure; the villain is as convincingly apocalyptic as it is in the comic, and the final battle just as inspiring. An extra twenty minutes could've made a world of difference, though.
¶ posted by darkness at 1:27 PM
Saturday, March 01, 2008
This is me jamming a snowmobile last week when we were in Colorado! Jammin' across a meadow at about 60 mph. This 2 hr trip was without a doubt one of the coolest things L & I have ever done. You can see L ahead of me jammin her's. If you ever get the opportunity, DO IT!
¶ posted by Zazz at 4:34 PM