Sunday, May 29, 2005

post 45. drinks with the improv troupe.

went out with fellow geva comedy improvers after another successful weekend of shows. Posted by Hello

Friday, May 27, 2005

post 44. ocean's 12.

Posted by Hello
Much like Ocean's Twelve itself, David Holmes' score for the movie doesn't try to fix something that wasn't broken in the first place: the composer returns with more eclectic music of his own and from what must be a formidably large record collection. His approach may not be radically different here than it was on Ocean's Eleven, but when the results are this effortlessly hip and easygoing, no drastic changes are necessary. Reflecting the film's different scenery, Holmes uses mellow Italian pop and French psych-rock from the late '60s and early '70s, giving the score a warmer, more organic and focused feeling than the first movie's flashy, Vegas-inspired music had. He's equally good at selecting tracks from other artists as he is at crafting his own work: tracks such as Ornella Vanoni's breezy, sensual "L'Appuntamento" are esoteric, but not off-puttingly so. Though he could've just gone for kitsch, most of Holmes' picks aren't so much campy as they are cool but forgotten. However, things do get gloriously campy on John Schroeder's bizarro psych-rock/easy listening fusion "Explosive Corrosive Joseph" and Dave Grusin's "Ascension to Virginity," which, with its endless "la la la"s and shimmying guitars, is kitsch at its best. Piero Umiliani's mysterious "Crepuscolo Sul Mare" is another gorgeous Italian piece, and Roland Vincent's "L.S.D. Partie" and Dynastie Crisis' "Faust 72" are great examples of France's strange but extremely stylish version of psych-rock. Indeed, Holmes' vintage selections are so strong that his tracks often feel like they were written to support and showcase the older material. "What R We Stealing"'s fuzz bass sounds right at home next to the previously mentioned tracks, and the hammered dulcimers that pop up on "Lifting the Building" and throughout the score add to the exotic sound. "Stealing the Stock (into) Le Renard de Nuit" sounds like a French beatnik take on spy music; "$165 Million + Interest (into) The Round Up" begins as a psych-rock jam and evolves into a lumbering, brass-driven melody that's mischievous but also slightly menacing. "10:35 I Turn Off Camera 3" and the tense, percussive "The Real Story" have the harder-edged, more current sound of most of Holmes' work, but overall, the score is a testament to his versatility. While it's just as fun as the Ocean's Eleven soundtrack was, Ocean's Twelve manages to be subtler and more distinctive in its mix of old and new sounds.

Tuesday, May 24, 2005

post 43. jedi in need of a light saber.

Cast off your old name! Your Jedi name is

GOOTI HOROC of the planet Viagra!

Find your Jedi Name!

post 42. sunrise.

1. outkast, "intro."
2. outkast, "b.o.b."
3. me first and the gimme gimmes, "somewhere over the rainbow."
4. level 42, "something about you."
5. benny benassi & the biz, "satisfaction."
6. eagles of death metal, "so easy."
7. camper van beethoven, "take the skinheads bowling."
8. phantom planet, "big brat."
9. gary glitter, "rock and roll part 2."
10. soul coughing, "bus to beelzebub."
11. run-dmc, "mary, mary."
12. sly & the family stone, "i want to take you higher."
13. kenna, "free time."
14. queen, "fat bottomed girls."
15. herbie hancock, "rockit."
16. brownsville station, "the martian boogie."

Sunday, May 22, 2005

post 41. nascar stuff.

from the new york times:
"For a certain segment of the population, Nascar's raid on American culture -- its logo festoons everything from cellphones to honey jars to post office walls to panties; race coverage, it can seem, has bumped everything else off television; and, most piercingly, Nascar dads now get to pick our presidents -- triggers the kind of fearful trembling the citizens of Gaul felt as the Huns came thundering over the hills. To these people, stock-car racing represents all that's unsavory about red-state America: fossil-fuel bingeing; lust for violence; racial segregation; run-away Republicanism; anti-intellectualism (how much brain matter is required to go fast and turn left, ad infinitum?); the corn-pone memes of God and guns and guts; crass corporatization; Toby Keith anthems; and, of course, exquisitely bad fashion sense. What's more, they simply don't get it. What's the appeal of watching . . . traffic? It's as if ''Hee Haw'' reruns were dominating prime time, and the Republic was slapping its collective knee at Grandpa Jones's ''What's for supper?'' routine. With Nascar's recent purchase of a swath of real estate on Staten Island, where it intends to plop down an 80,000-seat racetrack and retail center for the untapped New York City market, the onslaught seems poised on the brink of full-out conquest. Cover your ears, blue America. The Huns are revving their engines."


Saturday, May 21, 2005

post 40. rcw mayhem, the old toad, irondequoit family restaurant.

last night, i ate: nachos, a hot dog, pizza, ice cream, two pepsis, two white russians, a cheeseburger and fries. this morning it feels like all these things have been held too long at a terribly boring gymnastics convention in my stomach, and they all want, ever-so-badly, to leave. they just don't know whether to go up or down. Posted by Hello

Wednesday, May 18, 2005

post 39. sunset.

1. groove armada, "at the river."
2. wilco, "buried treasure."
3. nine inch nails, "adrift and at peace."
4. yohimbe brothers, "30 spokes."
5. brian eno, "events in a dense fog."
6. sven libaek, "open sea theme."
7. bonnie "prince" billy, "death to everyone."
8. talking heads, "heaven."
9. dimitri from paris, "une very stylish fille."
10. massive attack, "protection."
11. nine inch nails, "gone still."
12. the grateful dead, "ripple."
13. k-os, "hallelujah."
14. nine inch nails, "leaving hope."

Tuesday, May 17, 2005

post 38. three steps to ensure your safe return.

at the risk of sounding snobby, here are three things you can do to make sure you don't annoy your friendly neighborhood record store employee:

1. please do not ask to have the music turned down.
when entering the store, why not throw caution to the wind and try looking for things yourself? most record stores are pretty good at categorizing and alphabetizing their stock.
3. any record store employee worth his salt does not like insane clown posse. if you are a juggalo, please refrain from asking how the new album is, or if the dark carnival is stopping anywhere in the area soon. you will be laughed at and made fun of after you leave the store.

post 37. happy birthday, mr reznor.

1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6.

post 36. charley's angels.

link. Posted by Hello

post 35. the cosmos conspiring.

with the windows media player on random, these three songs played right in a row, making me think things wouldn't be as bad as i thought:

the ramones, "blitzkrieg bop."
the beatles
, "yesterday."
living colour
, "desperate people."

Monday, May 16, 2005

Thursday, May 12, 2005

post 32. chimpanzee art..

link. Posted by Hello

post 31. with teeth.

We should consider ourselves very lucky that both Al Jourgensen and Trent Reznor - the last of the great industrialists - have emerged from rehab sans all that weeniedom that most artists seem to align themselves with after such ordeals.

Mr. Jourgensen’'s Ministry went through rough times during the nineties, thanks to drug stuff, legal stuff, and band stuff. 1995’'s
FILTH PIG and 1999'’s THE DARK SIDE OF THE SPOON had flashes of greatness, but the rest was less interesting a copy of NPR'’s “"Driveway Moments.”" Then, Mr. Jourgensen emerged from rehab with a Republican in charge and delivered 2003'’s fiery ANIMOSITISOMINA and last year’'s totally nuclear HOUSES OF THE MOLE, two albums that showed, if nothing else, that rehab somehow made Mr. Jourgensen meaner.

Meanwhile, Nine Inch Nails - Ministry'’s little brother in the industrial family - was having problems of its own. Trent Reznor delivered 1999’'s
THE FRAGILE to a huge round of disappointing sales and snide looks from all those people who jumped on the “Closer” bandwagon a few years before. It was great, it was loved by every critic this side of NPR, but, was no THE WALL. And “"Ripe"” sucked. Then Mr. Reznor got a case of the alcodrugoholic flu and disappeared for a while, deep into the recesses of that funeral-parlor-turned-recording-studio down in New Orleans.

This particular return from rehab brings both a Glenn Danzig-beefy Trent Reznor and
WITH TEETH, the most concise album he’'s done since PRETTY HATE MACHINE. Clocking in under one hour, it brings Mr. Reznor back to the synth-based hookiness that was the reason we all started listening to Nine Inch Nails in the first place. And although THE FRAGILE was an epic of layers and guitars and instrumentals, it had none of the vocal trickery that is so mind-numbingly good here: the falsetto on “"All the Love in the World;"” the self-deprecating, breezy verses of "“Only;"” the added accentuation when he sings “"With Teeth-ah”" on the title track.

Where Mr. Jourgensen'’s attack is a monolithic braining of guitars and programmed drums, Mr. Reznor understands that you can get just as much, if not more, effect if you give the listener a chance to catch his or her breath, creating more tension; the title track'’s middle part of piano and whispers will send listeners into a blissful trance, perhaps having them turn up speakers in an effort to hear, only to be slapped with enough wattage to deserve broomstick pokes from the neighbor below.

But make no mistake; there is no shortage of angst and distress here. “"You Know What You Are”" is everything "“Starfuckers Inc"” wishes it could be, and "“The Line Begins to Blur"” is a thick mosh of prime industrial that hearkens to the "“Reptile"” days. Dave Grohl'’s drums pound feverishly throughout, and while nothing here is as memorable as his work with Queens of the Stone Age, it still adds a considerable attack with which Mr. Reznor can flit his focused anger through lyrics that are pretty much your standard NIN fare; but while he sings about the old “"smashing things apart,"” this time the "you" he yells at” in any of these tracks might just be the older, drunker Reznor.
Posted by Hello

post 30. park avenue.

Posted by Hello

post 29. cheap seats is my personal fave.

star wars, anyone?

Wednesday, May 11, 2005

post 28. suspended animation.

"Although they have always had a signature sound (grounded in the heavy, manic, precise, and strange), Fantômas have been fairly adventurous from album to album. So it's a little surprising that -- after hopping from the metal-horror spastics of their debut to an album of film music covers on Director's Cut to Millennium Monsterworks (an almost traditional metal album in collaboration with the Melvins) and, finally, to last year's epic single-track Delirium Cordia -- Fantômas would arrive back at the start. Like their self-titled debut, Suspended Animation is a concept album. The debut was a 30-song soundtrack to a comic book, with each song taking a page number as its title. This disc appears to be the soundtrack to April of 2005, with each song titled after one of the month's 30 days -- which brings us to the monumental artwork that accompanies the CD: a glossy elaborate 30-day calendar illustrated by Japanese artist Yoshitomo Nara. The intersecting innocence and mischief of Nara's punk munchkins match the tone of Fantômas, at least for this album. The heavy use of samples that has been a steady part of the Fantômas sound is here, but instead of the horror-movie shrieks that their first album leaned heavily on, it's a litany of bonks and whistles straight from classic cartoons. Mike Patton, who once again wrote all the music, is more focused than ever here. The songs (or sections, as Fantômas albums often feel like one long composition chopped into bite-size chunks) are shorter and even more frenzied; there's less brooding menace and more giddy insanity -- without ever giving way to total chaos. For all of his eclecticism, Patton has always had a clear vision and worked within a defined set of themes, from his work with Mr. Bungle to the present. Anyone who wonders what that vision and those themes add up to should look no further than Suspended Animation, which offers one of the clearest and most potent distillations yet."Posted by Hello

Sunday, May 08, 2005

post 27. the resurrection of felix, part ii.

i propped felix up with a dowel rod and some dental floss...he's beginning to look better already, yeah?Posted by Hello

Friday, May 06, 2005

post 26. my new bodyguard.

holding the scepter in my hands felt quite dangerous; i knew that there would be people who would want to take it from me, the lowly janitor who somehow found himself in the position of replacement king. i looked around the room and saw everyone looking at me like they wanted to kill me: there was opus del closer, the one-eyed minister of the state, who certainly had the firmness to be next in line. he looked at me with his evil eye and spat when i tried to pull off a nonchalant nod to each of my cabinet members. there was killbrough minnywinkly, the minister of defense, his body creaking with the armored steel that had been infused with after the battle of monochrome. next to him was religious furniture, the miserly old treasurer; there was bobby scumbib, and last but not least the administrator of scientific disasters guiless thimblerig. i tried engaging them all in conversation. well, i said, pulling the robes over my legs, that was unexpected. who would have thought the janitor would take over this whole thing? ha, ha, ha! i laughed nervously. they all murmured a decidedly half-hearted and mean-spirited agreement but all turned at the sound of one person clapping. at the back of the room, leaning against the huge doorway that separated the throne from the royal baths, was silver cutaway, my personal bodyguard. always more loyal to the state over personal matters, she was in love with the former king. she clapped and everyone turned around, scowling at her like she was the world’s biggest party-pooper. i think you’ll make an excellent king, she said. later, in the confines of my royal chamber, she told me as much on a more personal level. i loved the king, you know that. and one of these people killed him. they had tried for so long, and finally, well, here we are. she looked off in to the distance as i lay in my royal bed, reading comic books. i can’t help but feel responsible, she continued, then I saw her wipe at her face, straighten herself, and turn towards me. you have large shoes to fill, and right as she said this she she quickly shot to the ground like a cat that suddeny heard a noise in the other room. what’s the mat—i started, but she shot me a look that told me to shhhhh. all was quiet. i looked around nervously, and began to slowly pull the covers over my head. withouit so much as a bead of sweat, she launched three knives at a tapestry opposite the foot of my bed and suddenly there was a cry -- opus del closer fell dead with a nasty-looking, sharp thing in his hand that would have no doubt caused me much grief. he fell to the ground and cursed me. hey, man, i didn’t ask for this, I replied as he took his last breaths. silver ground her foot into his chest. i should have known, she said. did you kill the king, she said, and he denied it, although he admitted he knew who did. he croaked before she could get that information, though. the next day I shuffled alongside silver, me in my royal robes that were much too big for me, and silver striding confidently as we gamboled through the royal gardens. how did you meet the king, i asked as i blew on my tea to cool it off. he was elected and i was a very young girl, just having joined the state military, and he saw that i had potential as his royal body guard. by the time i was twenty, i was in that posit…where did you get that tea? she asked. oh, from that nice gentleman over there, i said, pointing to the man standing by the poison ivy display in the garden, a man i would have described as looking very familiar but wearing a bushy, almost comically bad moustache. i put the tea up to my lips and before i knew it i was standing in the middle of the garden looking at a hole in the ground caused by the acid that was going to be my tea but was swatted from my hands by silver, and killbrough minniylwinkly lying on the ground by the poison oak, having just had his fake moustache ripped away by my personal bodyguard. who killed the king? was it you, you scoundrel? she cried, and killbrough admitted he knew nothing of that plot, but was happy to see the king die, for he thought it surely meant that he would have taken the throne. there’s only one end to traitors, silver said and she asked me to turn away as she pulled out her long, sleek-looking blaster pistol. later that day we were enjoying go-carts. did you love the king, like, you know, love him love him? i shouted as we bumped each other playfully, laughing in the sun-drenched playgound. i…i loved the state, she said, and he was a great man. i was never one for power. i am only here for duty, duty to the leader of the state. that’s my job, i said proudly. well done, she replied with a proud smile on her face. suddenly there was a gaggle of go-carts surrounding us, and wouldn’t you know it, religious furniture had the evil egyptian cart-ouche racing team at his behest, and they were trying to run me off the road. it was all i could do to keep my crown on the top of my head, what with all that jostling. silver immediately jumped from her car, used mine as a stepping stone – at 15 miles per hour!!! – and took out the evil egyptian cart-ouche team in the following ways: 1) punching a face in, 2) shoving one’s face into the moving parts of an engine, and 3) suffocating one with a tire. then she went after religious, and they had the sweetest-looking duel on go-carts that i can’t even begin to describe, but was certainly worthy of having the national anthem rewritten. we stood at the side of the road, go-carts in flames and the egyptian cart-ouche team lying about dead, and silver with her foot on religious’ neck. did you kill the king? she asked. please spare me, i was blinded by power, he said. so! you killed the king, she asked. no, it wasn’t me, but i thought this one would be easy to get rid of. hey, i pouted, why does everyone think i’m a weenie? then i noticed the elastic band around my crown needed tighening. because, religious spat, you’re a janitor, and an orphan, at that! silver swiftly slid a knife into his chest. the sky was pretty as we sat on the beach in the warm summer afternoon. i thought the king would live forever, she said, looking out at the water, and i ate sandwiches from my picnic basket. peanut butter and jelly. well, we all have to go sometime, right? i said, finishing off another one. i went towards the water, and just before i stepped in silver tackled me and admonished me for not waiting a half hour before going in the water after eating. then she asked, where did you get that picnic basket? i brought it myself, i said proudly. oh, she said, and looked around. we returned to the picnic basket and i offered her a sandwich. thanks, she said. we ate sandwiches on the beach, and got to know each other. do you think i’ll make a good king? i asked. she began to cry. what’s the matter? do you think i’ll be that bad a king? i asked. she said, i have a secret for you, but before she confided it in me, bobby scumbib came sludging out of the water in a shark suit. silver wiped away her tears and quickly stood at the ready. no, no, i give up, he said, dripping wet. i'm turning myself in. i’ve been waiting in the water for hours now, ready-ing my attempt to kill you, but you’re too smart, king. you must have known i was preparing the ultimate death. he then took out a transmitter and pushed a button, and the following things happened in the water: 1) a giant gate opened and suddenly the water was filled with giant shark fins prowling the coastline 2) three helicopters zoomed out from behind the cliffs around us and started shooting randomly into the water 3) a giant explosion blew up all the sharks, then the shark pieces hit the helicopters, which made them lose control, dive haplessly into the water, and then exploded. see? he said. wasn’t that pretty cool? silver and i agreed. how did you know not to get in the water? he asked, and then, after taking cuffs from silver, binded himself and sloopingly walked off towards the jail. i smiled at silver. she smiled back and put a comforting hand on my shoulder. you were telling me you had a secret, or something, before bobby scumbib came out of the water? i asked as we played ping pong in the royal game room later that night. yes, she answered. it’s…it’s that i’m your mother. i dropped my paddle, which of course gave the point to silver. what??? i jabbered. she said: i was in love with your father. my father? you know my father? where is he? i continued to jabber. i knew your father, she said, as she reached for another ping pong ball. she started to tell me about him but when she hit the ping pong ball with her paddle it exploded, sending her crashing through the air and into the nintendo. i ran to her. no, no…mom! please! please, are you all right? i asked. she smiled. all this time, silver’s smile had been a motherly smile. mom. please be all right. you’ll be fine, she said, weakly. you have your father’s strength, but you need to find it. where is my father? i asked. he’s close, sweetie. close. we knew people would try to kill you if they knew you were our son, so we…acted like you were adopted. he's closer than you know, she said as she reached up and felt the deep crimson velvet of my royal robes, and ran her shaking fingers along my crown. the realization hit me like a ton of bricks, and silver – mom – died in my arms. and somewhere, somewhere in the castle, i heard the spectrely dissonance of evil laughter. the laughter of guiless thimblerig.