Burned By The Sun........
Music. Life. Los Angeles.
Friday, October 31, 2003
In the spirit of the holiday I present:
Three Songs That Creep Me Out
"Asking for It", Hole featuring Kurt Cobain
"Asking For It", from Hole's breakthrough Live Through This, was already a disturbing song, with Courtney Love snarling "Was she asking for it? Was she asking nice? Was she asking for it? Did she ask you twice?" over the sinister bass sounds in the chorus. If it isn't about domestic abuse, it's about one fucked-up relationship. Years after its release, a tape surfaced with Kurt Cobain's voice singing the bridge, "If you live through this I swear that I will die for you." If the lyric wasn’t creepy enough, the sound of it is. His emotionless voice sounds completely out of place, disembodied above the rest of the mix.
"The End", The Doors (from 1967's The Doors)
"The killer awoke at dawn...he put his boots on....he took a face from the ancient gallery and he walked on down the hall..."
This is the song that cost The Doors their gig as the house band at the Whisky A Go Go. Jim Morrison was fucked up out of his mind on acid, and improvised the lyrics...including the Oedipal exchange:
"I want to kill you."
"Mother....I want to....FUCK YOU!"
Not even the Sunset Strip in the sixties would entertain those kind of lyrics.
After recording the song in the studio, Morrison returned in the middle of the night...with a fire extinguisher, trying to put out a fire that didn't even exist. He was probably on drugs.
The song itself is intense from the very beginning, with the slow, eastern-influenced guitar lick and hissing percussion. Morrison's possessed voice echoes eerily from the darkness, and the nonsense about blue buses and riding the snake to the lake (the hell?) sounds sinister and profound. The buildup of intensity at the nine-minute mark, the song's climax, is a squall that sounds like pure evil.
"Kim", Eminem (from 2000's The Marshall Mathers LP)
Forget 8 Mile, this is Eminem's acting debut. "Kim" is the prequel to the black comedy "'97 Bonnie and Clyde", from The Slim Shady LP. However, there really is nothing funny about this song. Even if it's Eminem himself doing the voice of his wife, Kim, who we all know will end up dead.
The song begins with Eminem talking to his daughter, in an adoring, yet off-kilter kind of tone. Then he turns to shout at his whimpering, cowering wife, and all hell breaks loose. He starts screaming at her for having an affair, and as the song progresses, he, in no uncertain terms, tells her that he's going to kill her. One can hear what's left of his sanity unravel at an alarming pace. He becomes disturbingly giddy toward the end, as he starts to enjoy himself:
Ha! Go ahead yell!
Here I'll scream with you!
AHHHH SOMEBODY HELP!
While the song may not have the same impact on repeated listens, it's hard not to wince as he shouts "YOU WERE SUPPOSED TO LOVE ME! BLEED, BITCH, BLEED!" over the sickening gagging noises made by his wife as he slits her throat. The song ends the same way its sequel begins...with the sound of a body being dragged through dead leaves.
On a personal note, I played this song for my pal Crazy J. After it was over, she looked like she had seen a ghost.
"Dude, if my husband wrote a song like that about me....divorce."
"Don't you think that's a little harsh?" I asked.
She shook her head, "Divorce."
I paused for a moment to think, and decided, "I wouldn't divorce him. I'd just go stay at a relative's for a few days. We'd talk on the phone, and if I believed he was kidding, I would come back. But only after removing all knives from the house."
"I'd still get a divorce."
Check out this mashup of Eminem's "Lose Yourself" with the "Kill Bill" theme.
Strokes to Debut Top 5
Based on early sales, Room On Fire is on track to sell 130,000 copies in its first week; that number would assure a Top 5 position. Depending on other factors, the album could go as far as #2. The top spot will likely go to that guy from American Idol. Again.
Fred Durst is Dumber Than I Thought...
The good people at Buddyhead have updated their gossip. Among many other things, they point out the following:
Speaking of tripping bitches, what the fuck is wrong with Fred Durst? We knew he was a fucking idiot before, but he's taken that title to new heights as of late. Dude has a tattoo of Kurt Cobain's face on his chest!!! Next to a tattoo of Elvis!?!?! What the fuck? Hey newsflash sissy, Kurt would hate you and your shitty rap rock band! That's like Satan getting a tattoo of Jesus Christ on his chubby chest! We all know what you're really like… you should have gotten a tattoo of Vanilla Ice's head dude. Thanks for totally ruining that Who song forever now for us dude. Weak.
CD Sales Actually Up
According to Hits Daily Double:
With overall CD sales this week up 6% against last year's numbers, it marks the seventh straight week of sales beating last year's figures. Although this is the week that trend will cease, it's still a bit of light in a rather bleak business climate. Next week's numbers will be compared against the likes of the 8 Mile soundtrack, Christina Aguilera and Nirvana.
Industry Consolidation Continues
Dreamworks will be sold to the Universal Music Group, which already owns Geffen, Interscope, and A&M. As if the state of mainstream music didn't suck enough already.
Another Stupid Pop Star Quote
"I'm really into poetry. Poems help me to learn different words." - Abs
I'm not sure, but I think Abs was a member of that one shitty boyband 5ive. That one from England with the one hit on TRL.
Quote courtesy of the delightful Popbitch.
Thursday, October 30, 2003
Happy Devil's Night!
In the spirit of the Detroit "holiday" I have found an entertaining article in the Detroit Free Press. Well, it really has nothing to do with Devil's Night, it's about the Simon and Garfunkel reunion. It was written by Mitch Albom. He mentions that younger people make fun of him for going to see the two old geezers. What he doesn't know is that they're not making fun of him for going to see two old geezers; they're making fun of him for paying somewhere between $55 and $250 (plus Ticketbastard fees) to do so.
I normally hate when older people write stuff about how today's music will never compare to the music of yesteryear and blah blah blah. But I have to say, this part is pretty funny:
Sorry kids, but there's not an artist out there today who writes on a poetic level like Paul Simon. Not even close. This man wrote the following: We come on the ship they call the Mayflower We come on a ship that sailed the moon We come in the age's most uncertain hours And sing an American tune Or, When darkness comes And pain is all around Like a bridge over troubled water I will lay me down By contrast, you have 50 Cent's big hit: It's your birthday, we gon' party like It's yo' birthday
I don't have a TV, and I never touch the radio, but this 50 Cent guy sounds like an ass. I don't think it's very fair to represent the lyrics of our generation's music with some guy who'd be nowhere if he hadn't been shot nine times. I'd take some of Conor Oberst's or Jeff Tweedy's lyrics over some of Paul Simon's. Bob Dylan and Lou Reed are better than everyone, but I digress.
Tuesday, October 28, 2003
The Onion talks to British Sea Power.
The Onion: Do you think your record could save lives?
Yan: Why, certainly. If stranded by the Bering Strait, the cardboard sleeve could serve as vital tinder. Pretty soon, you'll have a fire blazing, be making yourself slippers out of birch bark, and realize it's nice to live without polystyrene coat hangers, buns from Blimpie's, and the head goblin from The Red Hot Chili Peppers.
Talk About Bad Luck...
Great White's drummer's house burned down in one of the California fires:
A few blocks away, Audie Desbrow, 46, formerly the drummer for the rock band Great White, surveyed his devastated home. Gone was the recording studio along with hundreds of CDs, music industry awards — everything he owned.
Wearing blue jeans and a black T-shirt, Desbrow summed up his losses: "All I got's what I have on."
Another Sweatshop Scandal
Because celebrities are such caring people, especially when it comes to the workers who produce their clothing lines, it comes as a total shock that P. Diddy's clothing line Sean John is accused of sweatshop conditions in their Honduras factories.
Workers there are subjected to daily body searches, contaminated drinking water and 11- to 12-hour daily shifts, the report said. In exchange, they are paid 24 cents for each $50 Sean John sweat shirt they sew.
The study also found women were given mandatory pregnancy tests, and that those who tested positive were fired, Kernaghan said.
Uh, yeah, that sounds like a sweatshop to me. However, if that wasn't disturbing enough, it seems that Jeff Tweedy of Wilco has gotten mixed up in the situation:
"We had absolutely no knowledge of the situation; however, we take these matters very seriously," said Jeff Tweedy, executive vice president of Sean John.
Elliott Smith Memorial Concert
Beck, Conor Oberst, Beth Orton and Grandaddy have signed on to play an Eliott Smith memorial concert on November 3 at the Henry Fonda.
David Bowie and Iman in Tommy Hilfiger Ad
As reported here. Bowie's got to have more money than God, why would he do an advertisement?
Further Proof That Britney Spears is a Moron
From an article at E!Online:
"[I've] been into a lot of Indian spiritual religions," Spears told Newsweek.
When the magazine's correspondent asked if Hinduism might be one of them, the singer replied: "What's that? Is it like Kabbalah?
Sunday, October 26, 2003
Yeah, this bootleg link has been making the rounds. But what the other sites don't tell you is that you absolutely must download this Nick Drake album, The Complete Home Recordings. It has his voice and elegant guitar playing, but the recording is much less clean, which lends the songs a feeling of warmth and makes them seem that much more timeless.
Also, I don't know much about Joy Division, so this 1978 studio session may not be anything special, but I love it.
Rock En Espanol
I have to do some research on Latin American bands for a Spanish project. I actually managed to find two cool bands.
Most stuff I read about Monterey, Mexico's Volovan mentions that the Strokes and Ian Brown are fans. I can see it. This band obviously loves the Beach Boys. The songs of theirs I heard are great, breezy pop tunes. You can download the song "Ella Es Azul" here.
Another interesting band is Argentina's El Otro Yo. They seem to be fans of late 80s/early 90s art rock. My favorite tune of theirs is the Pixies-influenced "No Me Importa Morir".
Saturday, October 25, 2003
Just a couple of things:
I posted my pictures of The Darkness when they played the Roxy.
Also, it seems that Elliott Smith's band may still be playing at All Tomorrow's Parties next month, but with different singers covering his songs.
I also wanted to say "Fuck You!" again to the asshole that stole my hat. Even though they'll probably never see this. I should place an ad in the LA Weekly.
I'm going to miss that hat. It was a beige newsboy cap, a gift from my best friend Crazy J. She gave it to me because she thought it looked lame on her. That hat went to a lot of great shows. Coachella. The Strokes in Vegas. The White Stripes. The Electric Six. Although, at least now people can't identify me as the dork that got dragged onstage. Anyway, that hat shielded my head from water spat by Dolf Datsun, and beer spilled by Carl Libertine. That hat was to me what Roy Orbison's sunglasses were to him. Or Jackie O's pillbox hat. Or Elvis' sequinned jumpsuits. Farewell, hat.
Someone managed to get a picture of me and my hat rocking out to the Libertines at Coachella. Find Carl (for non-Libertines fans, he's the guy in front of the drum set), and look down. You should see a blue-ish looking hat. That's me!
So, anyway, the Strokes concert at the Shrine. Fucking unbelievable.
So, I get there and find my assigned seat it's not bad, but row 22 ain't so great either. I notice that the grandiose and tacky nature of the venue clashes with the scruffily dressed indie kids there to see the show. Before the Kings of Leon took the stage, everyone decided to rush the front of the room. After all, these are not people accustomed to "reserved seating". Amazingly, the security goons managed to push everyone back and clear out the aisles. Not that this stopped anyone. Everyone just snuck into unoccupied seats and prayed the actual owners didn't show up, although most did. I was kicked out of two seats (what? You didn't expect me, miss dorky super fan, to make a dash for the front? Are you kidding?) until I managed to find a seat vacated. The man next to me explained that his friend was supposed to sit there...but even though he had the ticket and was outside the venue, he was probably too fucked up to find his way in. He also said that he knew someone who was backstage at the Palladium, and they said Julian had only had three hours of sleep. So that explains quite a bit. My new seat was in row 4.
The Strokes, quite simply, were at their best. I can't imagine them performing a better show at this point in time. Maybe next year, they could do better. I kind of feel like an idiot for doubting they could ever improve after Vegas. The prospect that these guys can continue to get better is exciting and just a little bit, uh, scary. Also, I suggested in my last review that the new songs were part of the problem, I suspected that they were good on record, but maybe not the best live. That is not the case. They are fucking great live. "Reptilia" is a fucking monster. And "The End Has No End" is awesome. It's hard to pick highlights cause all the songs were so good.
I think the signature of a great Strokes concert is when Julian messes up, like with a lyric, or when he drops the microphone or something, and then makes a joke about it. I think it gives the band more of a personality live, it shows that they're human, not just some intimidatingly cool and eerily perfect band. Some of the comments Julian makes are kind of funny, it's almost as though he expects the audience to turn on him at any second. It's cool when they take their little cigarette breaks and chat with each other and discuss, uh, whatever it is they discuss. Instead of a band, you just see five friends onstage. I don't know. I just think that's cool.
So anyway, the songs started out kind of slower, they opened with "Between Love and Hate" and "What Ever Happened" and progressed to songs like "I Can't Win" and "Reptilia", and then to "Hard to Expain" and "Last Night", and then to "New York City Cops" and they closed with a blistering "Take It or Leave It". At the end of the song, Julian finally managed to lauch his microphone into the light rigging (he had been throwing shit at it for much of the evening) and then he stumbled over to Albert's amps, pauses for a moment, and then pushes each of them over one by one. Nikolai pushed over his Ampeg cabinet and threw his bass, and Fab scattered his drum kit. I was surprised. I'd never seen them do that before! At least I'm pretty sure I haven't. Those guys will do anything to avoid an encore.
Thursday, October 23, 2003
The Strokes Blew My Mind...Again
Yeah, they really were just tired at last night's show, because TONIGHT WAS FUCKING AWESOME! Probably better than Vegas! I have to write a serious review for the paper, and then I'll write a more personal review here.
This Is Sad
Well, as you probably know by now, Elliott Smith committed suicide on Tuesday. I wasn't a huge fan or anything, but it's still a disappointment. I remember seeing him perform "Miss Misery" on the Academy Awards, and my mom and I laughed 'cause we thought he was terrible. Last year, someone asked me if I wanted to go see him live. I was thinking about it, because I had heard such good things, but then the show sold out. Around that time I managed to get a hold of "Miss Misery", and I realized it was actually a good song. I listened to it again on Sunday, I think, and I thought, wow, this is a great song, and thought that I would check out more of his work. I have the worst timing, don't I?
I am confused by this article on NME. The Von Bondies deny that there are any problems between them and the White Stripes. Jason Von Bondie supports this claim by saying that Jack White was present at the band's Coachella set back in April. But supposedly Jack told the NME the following last month:
"I produced that band, got them a record deal. Detroit is such a great family and they're kind of a sore thumb. I don't speak to them. When you get burned constantly, there's no point in forgiveness anymore. I don't know what their problem is. They've really lost their minds."
It looks like someone is wrong.
In Other News...
You know, people were always so quick to accuse Rage Against The Machine of phonily supporting radical political causes in order to boost record sales. I think that's b.s. They would have sold a hell of a lot more records if they just wrote songs about bullies and mean parents, or partying, like all those other dipshit rap metal bands. And they wouldn't have gone to all the trouble to raise money for Mumia Abu-Jamal and Leonard Peltier. And Tom wouldn't have gone to visit Jamal on death row. Even though Rage is now defunct, and Audioslave is doing well with no politics whatsoever, Tom is doing this politically-oriented acoustic tour. Seriously, will people quit accusing them of phoniness now?
So, I just got back from the Strokes concert at the Palladium. Here is a preliminary review. I am tired, so it will probably be poorly written and make little to no sense. I'll try to fix it later, if I have time.
It was a good performance, but I've seen them do better. This performance, in fact, ranks as number three.
I think maybe that's why you're not supposed to see a band six times. When everyone else (who has either never seen them or has seen them once) walks out of venue exclaiming "amazing!", as people did tonight, you're just kind of thinking, "yay, that was fun."
I have a weird standpoint going in to review Strokes concerts. On the one hand, I LOVE them, and I want to write nothing but praise and try to convince people of how great they are. On the other hand, I know very well what this band is capable of delivering live, and I have extremely high expectations. Should these expectations not be met, I have to mention that.
Last year, I endured the hell of a Greyhound Bus trip (EIGHT FUCKING HOURS!! Just from LA to Vegas!) and staying at a crack den hostel in Las Vegas to see the Strokes perform at the Joint. It was the best show I've ever seen. I wish I could describe WHY it was the best show I've ever seen, but I was at a loss of words then, and I still am today. When I walked out of that show, I was elated and a little worried. Elated that I saw such a great show, and that they were an even better band than I thought, and worried that they would never be able to top Vegas. The Vegas performance is the watermark for all other performances.
So anyway, the concert review. Regina Spektor played first. She wasn't bad, but this was the wrong tour for her to be on. She sings and plays the keyboard. It's music you would be most likely to hear at a coffeehouse. I would have really enjoyed her performance if she were opening for someone like, Ben Folds maybe. But I was there to rock, and piano ballads don't really help with that objective.
Now, this is no excuse for the audience to be the assholes that they were. Some frat dudes were yelling, "Take it off!", while another heckled "Keep it on!" Some other dude was trying to be Beavis. Meanwhile, these imbecile fifteen-year-olds behind me kept yelling "We want the Strokes!" and "You suck!", in high-pitched, immature voices. Fortunately, these idiot teenyboppers were unable to withstand the pressure of the pit, and left shortly thereafter.
Some people think that music fans who get pissed about bands they like being popular are just elitist music snobs. Not all of us. In fact, we just don't want to deal with dickheads like that at shows. And for some reason, a song on KROQ seems to attract these kinds of dickheads. All I know is, I don't hear shit like that when I'm at the Troubadour.
Moving on, I was pleasantly surprised by the Kings of Leon. If you didn't know, they're these preacher's sons (and their cousin) from the south. They do uh, southern rock? Well, not Lynyrd Skynyrd, perhaps darker, and with more of an indie vibe. Their strength is their songs like "Holy Roller Novocaine" and the one they played after that...songs that sound filthy and have cool bass lines. However, they need to write more of those. I would like to see a band with perhaps a little more charisma, even though it was cool how they spazzed out at the end of the set. But they definitely have potential.
I guess this is where I should mention the brutality of the mosh pit. It was terrible for the openers, but got even worse before and during the Strokes. Whenever I say that some of the worst pits I've been in have been for the Strokes, no one EVER believes me. They just laugh at me and mention something about me being a wuss. Guess, what people? I've been in a STOOGES mosh pit, at Coachella, an outdoor festival. How many thousand people were there? Oh, and don't forget the other thousands who were trying to muscle in to see the Chili Peppers. Don't fucking tell me I don't know what mosh pits are like, okay?
So anyway, this pit wasn't as bad as the Stooges, but it was pretty damn close (the main difference was that I didn't feel like my ribs were gonna break in this pit). When the show ended, I was so drenched in sweat (my own and other peoples') that I looked like I had jumped in a swimming pool and I nearly collapsed. And when I showered a few minutes ago, I found a strand of someone else's hair in my armpit. That bad. I can give you a bruise count tomorrow, er, later today.
Now, the Strokes. Did you know there's a foolproof way to figure out what kind of show you're gonna get? If, during the first song, Julian runs around kissing his bandmates and/ or slapping their asses, you are gonna get an awesome show. If not, you're going to get a good show. So you can imagine my disappointment when they opened with an easygoing rendition of "Under Control". That reminds me, the new songs sound great live, "Reptilia" and "The End Has No End" are standouts. However, some of the other songs are a little more mellow, and this does not lend itself very well to the kind of visceral rock show that the Strokes are capable of doing. I guess what I'm trying to say is that the new record is better but the old songs rock harder and lend themselves to a better live show.
Or, it could have been that the band was a little tired. Julian made some remark about it being their fourth show in a row, and made an advance apology should his voice start to go (it didn't).
All this may sound really negative, but it was still a really good show. They still sound great. They could look like mannequins onstage, but if they played as well as they always do, it would be worth it. I spent fifty bucks on the ticket, and I got my money's worth. I can say this hellbeast rating (out of 10, 10 being the highest, for the uninitiated) is between seven and a half and eight. Which is pretty damn good, considering I don't give tens.
However, what I did not enjoy was the theft of my favorite, signature hat! Yup, some motherfucker plucked it right off my head! I could feel a hand taking it off. I turned and saw no suspect. I told myself this was silly, it must have been some accident, why the fuck would anyone want my hat? But when I scoured the floor after the show for it, it wasn't there. There were tshirts and stuff, but no hat. So what the fuck?? I am super pissed.
Well, I am battered and bruised, and ready to do it all over again at the Shrine tonight. Perhaps things will be better.
Monday, October 20, 2003
It's That Time of Year Again...
The first six demotivators have been revealed. What are demotivators, you ask? They're a clever parody of those pathetically lame inspirational posters. You can find out general info here. Here are my favorite new ones:
"Power corrupts. Absolute power corrupts absolutely. But it rocks absolutley, too."
Wish I Could Go...
The Icarus Line are gonna be at the Echo this Friday. All ages, only $5. If you have a car, you should go. And you should take me with you.
I Think I'll Move To Europe
This is unfair! For our Video Music Awards, all we got were a bunch of pathetic winners and a publicity stunt by the world's most notorious publicity whores. What do the Europeans get? Performances by the White Stripes and The Darkness! Also, in England the Darkness have a number one album and the Strokes have a top ten single. What's at the top of our charts? Shit, shit, and more shit. Thanks Clear Channel and MTV!
Also, if I lived in England, I could go see the Libertines every damn day, with the way they've been gigging lately.
And if I lived in England, I wouldn't have to deal with inept public transportation. Or strikes. This bus strike is really starting to annoy me. If they're contracting routes out, couldn't they just get the red line train working? One freaking train. Is that so much to ask?
"Mr. Bailey complains that his rep is trash/ So he's seeking compensation in the form of cash," she wrote. "Bailey thinks he's entitled to some monetary gain/ Because Eminem used his name in vain/ The lyrics are stories no one would take as fact/ They're an exaggeration of a childish act/ It is therefore this court's ultimate position/ That Eminem is entitled to summary disposition."
Saturday, October 18, 2003
Aspiring Rock Stars, Take Note
DragonAttack at rocksnobs.com has posted an informative and entertaining guide to creating effective gig flyers. It includes practical advice like this:
I do not recommend advertising things like Drink Specials on your flyer. While you look at the flyer and think, "More people will show up if we mention the dollar beers," I look at the flyer and think, "If they have to mention dollar beers I am probably going to need to spend twenty dollars on beer before they sound good."
Addictions Are Funny
This is a true story of a courageous woman battling a crippling addiction. The taut, fast-paced storytelling will leave you on the edge of your seat. Yes, it's another installment of Leave It to Eve.
Speaking of addictions...that reminds me of this classic Onion article, "I'm Like A Chocoholic, But For Booze."
For my birthday, Emily gave me the funniest coffee mug, perfect for Irish coffee. It has a little teddy bear on it with a "don't mess with me" look on his face, and it says, "Hand Over The Booze And Nobody Gets Hurt." I laughed so hard! That bear was just like me when I robbed the party store earlier this year! Also, the mug is really big, so it can hold a lot of booze... another plus!
There were some good tidbits on the Popbitch mailing list today. I'll share some of them with you...'cause they're just too entertaining to keep to myself:
It seems Mariah Carey wants to write a poetry book for children...
Mariah's proposal for a poetry book includes
the following masterpiece, titled The Unicorn
"I love my unicorn, he knows I am true,
My troubles go poof, my unicorn named Boo
My lambs are all here, all smiling and gay,
Boo and I dance, we sing and we play..."
(FYI: Mariah has been known to check into
hotels under the pseudonym "Princess Cupcake")
I think it would take a lot more than a unicorn to make her troubles go "poof". How old is she anyway? As people start to approach middle age, they try to act like they're 20. Not 6. What a creepy poem. Please excuse me while I go vomit.
Sinead O'Connor is pregnant but claims not to know
who the father is. We hear that it's Shane McGowan.
No wonder she's in denial.
If that's true, she might want to start setting aside money for the kid's inevitable dental work.
Mary Carey is making a porn movie based on the
California governer race. Ron Jeremy is in
negotiations to play Cruz Bustamante.
Insert your own joke here.
On the Siegfried and Roy incident:
Mirage owner Steve Wynn blames the attack on a
group of "big-haired women" sitting in the
front row, who were trying to stroke Montecore.
He claimed the tiger was distracted, and then,
when Roy tripped over his paw, he tried to pick
the magician up and carry him off like a cub.
Damn those big-haired women! Anyone whe's ever been to Vegas knows the type: they're middle-aged and have their hair in beehives and wear sleeveless tank tops/dresses despite copious upper arm cellulite. They eat all the steak or crab legs or whatever else is at the buffet. They think they're classy, but they're dumber than rocks. Often midwestern in origin, they're definitely not people you'd want to put near wild animals. Perhaps now they'll put those women in the back if the show resumes.
Wednesday, October 15, 2003
Steve Vai: 32
Paul Stanley: 32
Angus Young: 1
Check out the guitar collections of the stars. For some truly whacked-out axes (including triple neckers), peep Steve Vai's collection.
This Is Too Funny...
Every Metallica album is available on mp3 here.
(link via Largehearted boy)
German Photographers Pissed at Dylan
...because he won't allow them to take photos during his upcoming performances. The German Association of Journalists have called for a boycott of his tour.
"The freedom of photographic journalists to pursue their profession is more important than Bob Dylan's personal preferences," says a spokesman for the group.
My solution? People, it's called the three song rule. The artist grudgingly allows photographers (and dorks who brought cameras to the show) to take as many pictures as they want during the first three songs. After that, no photos. At all. If the photographers can't get the shots they need in that span of time, then they suck, and shouldn't be in the photography business anyway. Hell, I'm a shitty photographer and I can get quite a few decent shots in that time, and after three songs, I can forget the camera and enjoy the show.
The Living End are a good band. They deserved to be more than one hit wonders in the states. You may remember their delightfully bratty song, "Prisoner of Society." It's cool to know that they're still making albums and doing stuff in their native Australia.
Tuesday, October 14, 2003
I know I've been slacking in the posting department for the past few days, but I've just remembered that my school lets us have free webpages, and I need a place to put my digital photos. So I've been setting one up there.
Besides, nothing earth-shattering has been happening in the world of music news anyway.
If you're still mad, check out these lovely pictures of the Raveonettes and stellastarr* when they played at the El Rey.
Sunday, October 12, 2003
The Stooges reunited, the remaining members of the MC5 did a show in London, the Romantics released their first album in over twenty years, and now Alice Cooper's got a new album out. What's Ted Nugent up to?
Sam Raimi says," I would love to do the 4th Evil Dead film."
Yay! Now we can all look like Barbie!
Saturday, October 11, 2003
Get Your Facts Straight...
If you're as big a music geek as I am, you've surely seen the following quote on one of the sites or message boards you frequent:
"The music business is a cruel and shallow money trench, a long plastic hallway where thieves and pimps run free, and good men die like dogs. There's also a negative side."
--Hunter S. Thompson
Guess what? Thompson never said any such thing. The real quote went something like this:
The TV business is uglier than most things. It is normally perceived as some kind of cruel and shallow money trench through the heart of the journalism industry, a long plastic hallway where thieves and pimps run free and good men die like dogs, for no good reason.
It can be found on page 43 in his book Generation of Swine: Tales of Shame and Degradation in the '80s, if you don't believe me.
More info here.
In Other News...
Elefant are gonna be at the Echo on November 15.
I'm not much of a movie person. But I liked this movie, so I'll write a review.
Kill Bill: Vol. 1
Directed by: Quentin Tarantino
Starring: Uma Thurman, Lucy Liu, David Carradine
Worth seeing?: Yes
Am I buying it on DVD?: Yes
Rating (out of 10): 8 Hellbeasts
In a sentence: If you like sword fights, carnage, and killer soundtracks, you cannot afford to miss this film.
If you want a movie that includes deep, thought-provoking dialogue, character insight and development, a complex plot, and other wussy shit like that, go see something else. But if you're looking for style and jaw-dropping fight scenes that will keep you on the edge of your seat, this is your movie.
Uma Thurman stars as The Bride, an elite assassin who wanted to settle down and start a family. Her wedding party was murdered by her old associates. Her boss, Bill, shot her in the head and left her (and her unborn child) for dead. She was not dead, but in a coma. Four years later, she wakes up, remembers everything, and, on top of that, finds out some asshole male nurse has been pimping out her comatose body for $75 a fuck. She is PISSED OFF, and decides she's going to kill all of her old associates one by one, saving Bill for last.
That's the plot. It's pretty simple, although Tarantino drops a bomb on the audience at the end of the movie. Well, maybe it's not a bomb, but it's pretty significant.
Now for the good stuff. The fight scenes are awesome, especially the one where The Bride must kill eighty or so adversaries in a Tokyo nightclub. That has to be one of the greatest scenes ever committed to celluloid. The Bride could chop Zorro up in ten seconds or so. With the fight scenes, there is a lot of carnage. A lot. I haven't seen this much carnage since Saving Private Ryan. Hell, it may be bloodier than that. It must have been difficult to come up with so many different ways people can die.
Kill Bill would have been a good movie with just the fights, but this movie is also stylish and funny. Funny in a smirking, snickering kind of way. Like when peoples' heads get chopped off and a completely unrealistic geyser of blood expodes from their neck. In terms of cinematography, it shifts from black and white to color to an animated sequence and back. The shots themselves are works of art, so it's one cool-looking movie.
Finally, I love the soundtrack! The music doesn't necessarily match what's happening in the movie, sometimes it even kind of contrasts. There are all these great 50s-inspired songs, and even the instrumental music is cool. The use of Nancy Sinatra's "Bang Bang" in the first scene is fucking brilliant, one of the best uses of music in a film after "The End" in Apocalypse Now.
If you're not a pacifist wuss, pseudo intellectual, or an uptight film critic, you'll like this movie. I can't wait for Volume 2.
Friday, October 10, 2003
I love seeing movies in LA, it's an experience in and of itself. In the suburbs, where I am from, people get dolled up in their fucking Abercrombie and Gap (or whatever the hell it is they wear, the point is that EVERYONE LOOKS THE SAME!), hop into their SUV, get to the bland, generic theater five minutes before the movie starts, and sit there silently or talk through the movie. One time, when I went to see Bowling For Columbine at some theater in Orange County (not where I am from, but a scary place nonetheless), there was this Barbie and Ken couple who made out during the footage of concentration camps and Columbine security tapes. How romantic! Needless to say, in that kind of atmosphere, you'd better fucking hope the movie is good.
I was just at the Vista Theatre on Sunset a few hours ago. I got there a half an hour early, and bought a ticket. Then I got in line. Yup, there was a line to get in to the theater. There were about fifty or so people in front of me. I shudder to think of how long the people in front had waited. The people watching, in and out of the theater, is fascinating. Chic urban intellectuals, stereotypical hipsters, and stoner fanboys are all there. Oh, and I can't forget the protesters. Yeah, there were all these middle-aged hippies on the corner with signs saying "Recall Bush!" and "Honk For Peace!".
The "Honk For Peace" guy was pretty adamant. Any time someone honked he'd shout "Yeah!" This one guy who looked like Lemmy from Motorhead drove by in this Trans Am or some 70s car. It was black with a flame design on it. All he needed was to blast some speed metal. And then this car stopped at the light, and the dog started barking. The hippie was all, "Yeah, bark for peace! Good dog! Gather your friends!" As entertaining as it was, I don't understand why anyone would do that. I mean, maybe it would make sense if you got people to honk for peace in front of the White House. Then the President might get so annoyed he'd call off the war just to make people stop honking. But all this guy on Sunset was doing was making a terrible fucking racket!
And then there was the hippie who was meditating for peace. He had a pretty tough job, with the cars constantly honking. He eventually gave up and started waving a sign like the rest of them. Another guy persisted meditating. But I'm not sure if he was a protester. I think he was homeless.
Anyway, when you walk up to the front door of the theater, there are handprints and signatures in the pavement. And there's an ancient Egyptian motif. This motif pervades the entire theater. The screen is behind a red curtain. The aisles are nice and wide, so you don't have to stick your crotch or ass in someone's face if you like to sit in the middle of the row. There are all these columns of a woman's face who looks more like a European queen than an Egyptian queen. The place is so tacky it's cool. And you can be sure there isn't another theater in the world that looks anything like it.
I sat down next to a cute guy in a trucker hat. This could only happen in a city. As everyone knows, there are no cute guys in the suburbs.
Some guy behind me was complaining that the concession stand didn't serve coffee. How many places serve coffee in movie theaters? I had never heard of the concept until I came to LA. "That's stupid," his friend remarked. I would just like to say it's not stupid, unless of course, you want to have to get up to piss in the middle of the movie.
As for the audience, they applauded for trailers (by the way, the new Matrix and Lord of the Rings movies look really, really boring). They applauded whenever Uma Thurman killed a large number of people. They applauded at the end of the film.
Even if the movie sucked (which it didn't), I would not feel it was a waste of eight dollars.
I don't have much time, as I am going to see Kill Bill, and it takes two hours to go three miles with LA public transport. A few quick things:
Bob Dylan, Bruce Springsteen, and Bono are in talks to join a tribute concert for Johnny Cash next month in Nashville.
The Strokes kicked off their tour last night.
The Network is so totally Green Day.
Thursday, October 09, 2003
Tom Morello (formerly of Rage Against the Machine, one of the greatest bands EVER), Billy Bragg, and Steve Earle will be hitting small clubs across the country with the Tell Us The Truth Tour, according to Billboard. In an earlier article, it says that Morello will be playing acoustic sets. The purpose of the tour is to raise awareness of honesty and accountability issues in the mass media. No LA show is listed.
Karen O (singer of the Yeah Yeah Yeahs, for the musically clueless) was hospitalized after falling off a stage in Australia.
NME elaborates on the Libertines reunion gig. Includes setlist.
Wednesday, October 08, 2003
Another Libertines Update!
This says it all:
Photo via http://www.kentindie.co.uk
Yup, Pete's freedom gig turned into a full-scale Libertines reunion. I can't say I'm surprised, but I am happy. I am also pissed that I couldn't be there. Check out some pics here.
Chicago: Greatest. City. EVER.
I want to move to Chicago. First, they sue shitty band Creed for putting on a pathetic show. Then, they pelt shitty band Limp Bizkit with garbage. Now, they're suing Limp Bizkit for putting on a really pathetic show.
According to paperwork on The Smoking Gun, 172 attendees of the Summer Sanitarium Tour (the same people who pelted the band with garbage) are suing for a $25 refund from their $75 ticket. While I commend the garbage pelting and suing, I cannot condone the fact that they went to the show in the first place. I mean, what kind of redneck, jock loser would want to see Linkin Park, Limp Bizkit, and Metallica?
Hopefully, this lawsuit will be more successful than the Creed one. But I doubt it.
I Had A Feeling This Was Gonna Happen...
California, meet Governor Schwarzenegger.
Pete Doherty was released from prison today. According to Ananova, NME revealed that Doherty wrote bandmate Carl Barat from prison. It goes on to say:
Barat told the NME: "Band or no band, I'm going to go and see my friend. I'm going to go and fly the flag."
"We both want to work with each other, we both love each other. We both built this thing together. I don't want this to crumble. I know we'll see eye to eye on a number of levels. We need to harmonise again, get back into things."
He added: "Once it's done then we can get the band back. We've always had this kind of relationship but nothing can change the fact that we are two peas in a pod. Brothers in arms, soldiers on the same journey."
For those who don't know, Doherty was jailed for burgling Barat's London flat.
Tuesday, October 07, 2003
Hahaha...I find this entertaining for two reasons:
First, it was sent to me by my school. Really.
Second, well, just look at it:
Playboy is having a college contest to celebrate its 50th Anniversary. The winner of the contest will win a trip for two to the Playboy Mansion in Los Angeles.
To be eligible, all a student must do is submit their personal artistic reflection representing Playboy's 50 years and visit www.playboy.com/on-campus/50contest/ for further instructions. This can include anything from pictures, paintings, collages, poems, songs, letters, stories or anything else that a student feels represents Playboy as an American icon for 50 years. Creativity is key!
So there ya go. If you're a college student and would like to go hang out at the Playboy mansion, now's your chance. I bet the judges of that competition are gonna have a good laugh. I would love to hear a song about the joys of Playboy Magazine.
Huh? There was an earthquake this morning? This is news to me.
Here's an interesting update of the Dead Kennedys' "California Uber Alles". Just in time for the recall election!
Did you know you can say the word 'fucking' on national television? Well, you can if your name is Bono.
NME has an alternate video for the Strokes' "12:51".
Monday, October 06, 2003
Damien Rice won the Shortlist Award last night.
The Guardian put together a list of the Top 40 British Bands. Some highlights: David Bowie (10), The Darkness (8), The Coral (4), The Libertines (1).
Saturday, October 04, 2003
Check this out! Someone made an embroidery cross-stich of Trogdor!
If you don't know what the hell Trogdor is, watch this.
Okay, I said I'd get some live reviews up, and I intend to do just that.
Last week (Thursday 9/25) I saw the Brian Jonestown Massacre at the Echo, with openers Low-Flying Owls and the High Strung. It was a pretty good show, and all of the bands were entertaining and enjoyable to listen to. I'm just going to give the entire show 6.5 hellbeasts. Also, did you know that the Brain Jonestown Massacre has every album they've recorded on mp3 at their website? I haven't had time to listen to them all, but I'd recommend you hear And This Is Our Music..., Take It From the Man, and Thank God For Mental Illness. You can also pick up some mp3s by the High Strung there as well.
That's all I feel like writing for now. I'll get the other reviews up later today or tomorrow.
Okay, a friend and I were discussing this a few weeks ago... the 80s are out, and the early 90s are in. A ton of 90s bands are reuniting (which I mentioned on here some time ago), and now the clothes are following. I think we had some other reasons to support our belief, but I forgot them. Sorry.
After more than 30 years of doing shows in Vegas, Siegfried and Roy have run into a bit of trouble. Apparently a tiger went for Roy's throat, and the magician is currently in critical condition. This is really tough luck considering how little the tigers actually appear in the act. If you failed to see them perform before this accident, don't worry. You didn't miss much. And you're a hundred dollars richer.
Friday, October 03, 2003
Holy Shit! New Year's Road Trip!
The White Stripes are gonna do a show with The Flaming Lips on New Year's Eve! The show will be at the Aragon Ballroom in Chicago (only a short road trip away from my holiday destination of Detroit). Now if I can just find a car...
This is pretty fucked up...even for Courtney Love.
He Sure Doesn't Waste Any Time, Does He?
Looks like Pete Libertine is gonna be playing a Freedom Gig this Wednesday. Tickets are being sold on Ebay. For those who haven't been following along, it's a gig to celebrate his release from prison.
Also, I've attended a couple of shows about which I have yet to write about on this site. I'll get those reviews up soon, but not now as I have to write a formal review and a feature piece for the paper this weekend.
Wednesday, October 01, 2003
Hey, British Sea Power is playing at Spaceland on Devil's Night (for non-Detroiters, that means the day before Halloween). I heard that they threw chairs at the audience at SXSW (though I don't know that it's actually true, but wouldn't it be cool if it was?). With that said, I'd go. Except I can't, because I'm not welcome at Spaceland.
What'd I do, you ask? Did I start a bar fight? Was I dealing coke in the bathrooms, or shooting up black tar in front of the stage? No, no, and no. I'm not welcome because of my fucking age.
Venues have no excuse to be 21 and over. There are plenty of venues that sell alcohol AND allow minors entry, so what the fuck? Rock and roll is supposed to be the music of the youth, it's not supposed to exclude them. Any venue that isn't all ages has no fucking business calling itself a rock venue. In fact, to not be all ages, they would have to be deathly afraid that minors are gonna drink and they're gonna get fined (in other words, they're PUSSIES) or, they'd have to be some kind of elitist bastards. Or they just want to make sure there's enough room in the venue for people who can buy alcohol, so they can make more money. Fuck greedy, pussy, elitist venues. Fuck them!
That felt good!
By the way, did I mention that today is Rant Day?
Just a couple of things for now:
It seems that Green Day has recorded a new album under a pseudonym. You can read all about it here. In short, there's a new band on Billie Joe's label called The Network. Their song is playing on the main page of the website, and it sounds an awful lot like Green Day. Or at least the singer sounds exactly like Billie Joe. Being the dork that I am, I would also like to point out that it says the leader of The Network, Fink, is an Aquarius. So is Billie Joe.
Also, The Network's new record comes with a DVD that has six full-length music videos. What band releasing a debut on an indie label has made six videos?
The NME has posted a piece of news today that was news last week. Why didn't they just tell us then that Justin Darkness said, "See you in November," to the crowd at the Roxy? That's not really my complaint though. My complaint is that in this article, they say the LA show was "star-packed". Star-packed, eh? I sure as hell didn't see any stars. And if you read this article, it sounds like they didn't have much better luck.
I'm sorry, but Jack Osbourne and two washed-up has-beens do not count as stars. Yes, I know that the article says they were among the celebrities, but c'mon, if there had been any better stars there, don't you think they would have mentioned them instead? Let's face it, if they had spotted, say, Winona Ryder, or even Courtney Love, they sure as hell wouldn't mention Travis Barker from Blink-182.
I like how the NME has the balls to break bands, and it's cool that they try to be fun and entertaining, but their ridiculous exaggerations can get kind of grating after a while (I'm not just referring to this....how 'bout that review of the new Strokes album that begins "Remember what guitar music was like before The Strokes...").
Ok, I feel a little better now.
Hours of Fun
Burned By The Sun