Burned By The Sun........

Music. Life. Los Angeles.

Wednesday, March 31, 2004

The Kids are Alright
USA Today has an article about kids listening to their parents' music (classic rock). I expect the film School of Rock may have had a little something to do with this, after seeing the movie my little brother (who's 15) kept asking to borrow my Who and Doors albums.

Maybe not though. I believe it's just a rite of passage in high school to discover the great classic rock bands. In my case, it was because there wasn't much current music for me to get excited about at the time. I don't think the mainstream musical climate is any better for kids today.


- I never really got why iPod owners didn't just get rid of those terrible earbud headphones. I mean, if you're gonna drop a few hundred dollars on the thing, why not invest a little bit more money for some headphones that don't suck? My questions have been answered. It's because the headphones are a fashion statement.

As one iPod owner said, "I always pick out the iPod people when I'm walking down the street. I know who all the cool people are."

Well, guess what, muggers can figure that out too!

(Link via Donewaiting)

- PJ Harvey's new album, Uh Hu Her, will be released stateside on June 8. More details here.

Tuesday, March 30, 2004


- Billboard discusses Loretta Lynn's new album

- Bee Thousand is getting a re-release, conveniently titled, at the time, Bee Thousand: The Director's Cut. Fun fact: The original working title for Bee Thousand was Instructions To The Rusty Time Machine.


- Delays BBC Sessions

- Kraftwerk live in Paris, 2002

- The Verve, Toronto 1995

Monday, March 29, 2004

Fun Facts About Lollapalooza
From Billboard:

- Morrissey, Flaming Lips, Sonic Youth and String Cheese Incident are confirmed

- Offers have been made to Black Rebel Motorcycle Club, Le Tigre, and the Fire Theft

- Jane's Addiction is not expected to be on the bill, but Perry will probably DJ or host

- It's going to be a two-day thing

- Ticket prices are looking to come down significantly from last year

[Edit: VH1 confirms Modest Mouse and the Polyphonic Spree, says more artists and a full itinerary should be announced later this week.]

- Franz Ferdinand's US tour itinerary is posted here. And there's even a Detroit show!

- Best Buy is having a sale on Rough Trade
albums. Some of this stuff is cheap!

Protest Songs
Since I discussed that assinine Korn song a few days ago, I thought I'd put up some protest songs that don't suck.

Topical protest songs:

"The Last DJ"- Tom Petty
It's a commentary on the sad state of radio, and it basically tells the story of the last decent guy in radio getting fired because he plays what he wants to play and says what he wants to say. Petty reminds us that we should care, with the line "there goes your freedom of choice/ there goes the last human voice"

"Hurricane"- Bob Dylan
Yeah, it's about Hurricane Carter, the boxer who was imprisoned for murders he did not commit. This is one of my favorite Dylan songs. Not only are the lyrics incredible, but his delivery on this song is great. I have six Dylan albums, but I've only heard two songs where Bob gets pissed. Usually, he's pretty detached from his stories, but in this and "Masters of War", which I'll get to in a minute, you can hear the terseness in his voice and it almost sounds like he's singing through clenched teeth. And in this tune, he throws in some swearing, which is significant because he practically never swears. And my God, he puts forth his entire argument in what? Seven minutes or so? I don't remember the exact running time. The song is fiery, poetic, and....logical. It's what a great protest song should be.
(link via Largehearted Boy)


"Eve of Destruction"- Barry McGuire
As you may have guessed from above, I like protest songs where the singer is pissed off. After all, isn't that why people write protest songs in the first place? I just heard this 1965 hit recently and I love it. It's catchy, and McGuire practically growls his way through the song. Best of all, the lyrics remind us that hate and hypocrisy starts at home ("hate your next door neighbor, but don't forget to say grace"), and that we're all guilty for the sad state of the world.

"Masters of War"- Bob Dylan
This is the greatest anti-war song ever. Dylan's voice can be somewhat unsettling to listen to at times (this is one of those times), and it's accompanied by an eerie, driving acoustic guitar backdrop. A lot of people think that anti-war songs are sang by hippies who are like, "we need love right now", or something stupid like that. Dylan, on the other hand, goes right for the jugular of the powers that be, with lyrics like,

I think you will find
When your death takes its toll
All the money you made
Will never buy back your soul.

Honorable mentions: I also love Country Joe and the Fish's "Feel-Like-I'm-Fixin'-to-Die Rag", and Rage Against the Machine's entire catalog (though I'd probably post "Freedom" about political prisoner Leonard Peltier, or "People of the Sun" about the Zapatistas, but those songs were singles anyway) . But I only have so much space to post mp3s.

Saturday, March 27, 2004

I just saw Mayor of the Sunset Strip, the documentary about KROQ DJ Rodney Bingenheimer, who is probably best known for knowing some of the most elite figures in music history. It was a good movie, with some funny moments, but it was also heartbreaking at the same time. I didn't see anyone crying, though my friend who saw the movie the day it came out said everyone in the theater was in tears. I'll admit I got a little choked up at the part in the end where he said, "I just want people to be happy."

The only sad thing about that sentence is that it comes from a guy who really doesn't seem very happy himself.

Not everything about the movie is sad. On the lighter side, Kim Fowley, who comes across as an outspoken asshole, makes a very entertaining/humorous foil for Rodney.

There's other stuff I want to say about the movie but I think I'd be spoiling it by doing so.

I'd definitely recommend seeing it, though I think it's only playing in southern California right now. But new locations will probably be added gradually. You can watch the trailer here.


-Jamaican artists record Bob Dylan tribute album

-"I think all the contestants should be put in a cage and sent to Thailand": Morrissey disses Pop Idol contestants. Wouldn't he make a terrific guest judge for the show?

-Speaking of Morrissey, I read a rumor that he's gonna get the surviving members of the New York Dolls to reform for the Meltdown festival. Of course, as far as I know, there's nothing to substantiate that.

Friday, March 26, 2004

The Part Where I Get Sort of Political (I'm Sorry)
So, I saw this article in Billboard. It's about Korn's new single and video, and how it 'attacks' music conglomeration. I guess the video streams stuff on the bottom like "One corporation owns the five major video channels in the U.S." and "The music industry releases 100 songs per week."

I'm glad to see an artist taking on the subject of radio/media conglomeration. Even if I don't like them.

Or I was glad. Until I found the lyrics of the song.

Wow. Such eloquence! Look out Bob Dylan!

I'm being sarcastic, of course. When I read those lyrics I laughed my ass off (you might also wanna look at the comments under the lyrics, those are funny too). I think my deceased cat could have written better lyrics on the topic.

Oh, you know what's a good song that came out a couple years ago? Tom Petty's "The Last DJ". But that didn't get on MTV!

I wonder if it's because that song actually makes sense and has the power to make you think.

And if the subject of conglomeration hasn't already pissed you off, here's something even worse: the erosion of the first amendment. Articles like this make me think, "You know, I've always liked Toronto".

Thursday, March 25, 2004

New Bands Added to Coachella

-Jimmy Eat World (alt-rock/emo)
-The Evens (Amy Farina and Ian MacKaye)
-Danny Howells (electronic)
-Boozoo Bajou (latin/eclectic)
-Supernatural (rap)
Morrissey Bans Meat Vendors From Manchester Comeback
According to NME, he told the Sun: "It would be hypocritical to sing "Meat Is Murder" amid smells of hamburgers."

Good luck banning all those hot dog vendors from the sidewalk outside the Wiltern.

My God, This Is Awful!
Wanna hear a Streets song from the new album? Are you sure? Okay...here you go.

This Has Nothing To Do With Music
Richard Simmons was cited for 'misdemeanor assault' after slapping some guy in an airport who yelled, "Hey everybody. It's Richard Simmons. Let's drop our bags and rock to the 50's!" The guy plans to press charges. What kind of sissy presses charges for slapping?


-Sleater-Kinney embark on tour, plan to record new album

-Tracklisting for Kill Bill Vol. 2 revealed

Wednesday, March 24, 2004

Creem Magazine has an entertaining interview with the Von Bondies, which includes the stories behind "C'mon C'mon" (I never would have guessed it was about abuse) and "Not That Social". And the part where Stollsteimer describes his bandmates is amusing.
Interpol To Open For The Cure?
A friend of mine, a huge Cure fan, showed me this excerpt from a comprehensive Cure fansite:

Interesting news out of NYC last night. Seems like one of the opening bands have signed on for the US Cure Tour. Who is it? All I can say for right now is that they were in the Top 10 of the recent poll. Anyway, I'd like to thank the person who sent in that bit of info. It proves once again that "New York cares".

Was that a big enough hint for you? ; )

-So, I've been getting off my lazy ass lately and going to some shows. Last night I saw the Secret Machines. What's cool about these guys (other than the music) is that they actually put some thought into presentation. They have an unusual stage setup and travel with their own lighting. I remember my friend once said about the Brian Jonestown Massacre, "They will take you on a journey." I think the same thing goes for the Secret Machines. There's a lot of drone, with occaisonal bursts of loud, primal riffs and even a few pop-ish moments. It's pretty mesmerizing. You can hear a bunch of their songs at their website.

-Dude, I'm psyched to see Morrissey next month. Just picked up my ticket for the Friday show. Yeah, the official onsale date is Saturday, but there's another way. (Hint: I linked to Moz's official site for a reason)

And how funny is it that they're selling 5 show packages?

Tuesday, March 23, 2004

Local News First
Morrissey is going to play a five night stand at the Wiltern. The dates given are April 22-27. Ticketmaster doesn't have any info yet, but the folks at this site say the onsale date will be Saturday, 3/27 at 11 a.m.

"They're Going To Play All The Hits."
Um, did the Pixies really have any hits? Billboard talks to the Pixies' booking agent:

Meanwhile, a "major-market North American tour throughout the whole fall into December" is taking shape, Geiger reveals. "The size of the venue is going to vary from probably 2,500 to 10,000, depending on the market. It is an embarrassment of choices." Asked what fans can expect from the shows, for which the Pixies have been rehearsing in secret in southern California, Geiger says, "It's huge -- bigger than I thought. The band is playing well together. They're going to play all the hits."

Country Goes Hollywood
Joaquin Phoenix and Reese Witherspoon will play Johnny and June Carter Cash in the film Walk the Line, which will chronicle the singer's life. Filming may begin as early as June.

Also, you can see the trailer for Grand Theft Parsons here. If you haven't heard of it, it's about Gram Parsons' best friend who kidnaps his corpse to burn it in the desert, based on an agreement the two had.

The Guardian interviews Sufjan Stevens, Malcolm McLaren. Sounds like McLaren is getting into the bastard pop craze. Tarantino okayed a mashup of the Zombies and Bessie Smith for Kill Bill 2.

Monday, March 22, 2004

Another List
Stylus has made a list of its writers' favorite albums, 101-200. There are no plans to publish the first half.

-The Guardian has an article about American labels sending bands to the UK to generate buzz. While the article says the Strokes are the inspiration for this recent trend, I'm pretty sure Nirvana was getting press in England before anyone cared about them here. I heard that the guys running Sub Pop records actually paid for a British journalist to go to Seattle and write something up about the scene. I guess it worked. I'm just saying the Strokes aren't the first, that's all.

I Am Cornholio!
Man, I miss Beavis and Butthead. I remembered their hilarious video commentaries when I saw someone post about their comments on Pavement:

"It looks like they aren't even trying, they should just start over and start trying"

"You know, I wouldn't mind if they sucked if they rocked. You know the Jesus Lizard suck, but at least they rock!"

A couple of my personal favorites:

(On some bad 80s hair metal band playing in a prison): "You know, if we put more of these bands in prison, maybe people would try to stay out of prison."

Beavis: "Butthead, why is Tom Petty famous?"
Butthead: "Uhhh..because he's on TV."
Beavis: "But why is he on TV?"
Butthead: "Because he's famous."
Beavis: "I know, but like, how did he get famous?"
Butthead: "Because! He's on TV, dumbass!"


"Here I Am (Come and Take Me)"- Al Green

"New Year's Eve"- Dengue Fever

Saturday, March 20, 2004

I Love Franz Ferdinand!
Just got back from the show. In the spirit of that old saying, "Don't say it, show it" I'll attempt to show why they are so cool:

Exhibit A: Sometimes you'll see people at shows who don't move. A muscle. At all. Sometimes they don't even clap at the end of songs.

The girl to my left was like that. Even after a great set by the Tyde, nothing. She managed to hold still for the first few songs in Franz Ferdinand's set, but gave in and started bobbing her head during "Dark of the Matinee".

The last time I saw one of those sort cave in, it was my best friend when the Strokes played at St. Andrews (in Detroit) back in 2001.

I saw that and thought "Wow. This band must be special. Or something." I thought that same thing again today.

Exhibit B: This, I still cannot believe. They made the audience clap along to one of the songs. Without trying.

If you live in LA, you know what a pathetic sight it is when a band either asks an audience to clap along, or someone in the band starts clapping to try to get everyone in the crowd to follow suit, and nobody does anything.

Requests for handclaps get you nowhere in this town. Unless you're the Datsuns. They actually got the entire audience at the Troubadour to clap along for part of a song, but they had to demand it, and yell at the people who wouldn't clap.

Franz Ferdinand? The audience just started clapping along with one of the songs. Well, not the ENTIRE audience, but probably half. Entirely unprovoked. It is possibly the weirdest thing I've ever seen.

If you missed tonight's show, you get a second chance. They're playing June 5 at the Avalon. Don't screw this one up.

And um, you might wanna be careful about drinking too much alcohol at the gig. Unless you want to start dancing like a jackass in public. Hell, I nearly started dancing like a jackass. And I was sober.

Friday, March 19, 2004

Since the past week has been pretty slow for news, I thought I'd sleep in today. Look at all this crap!

FCC Reverses Bono Ruling, Hits Howard Stern With Fine
Well, the network that broadcasted Bono's Golden Globes speech where he said something like "This is really fucking brilliant" didn't get a fine, but the commission warned all broadcast outlets that any future use of 'the f-word' will not be tolerated.

Howard Stern was hit with the maximum penalty of $27,500 for a show from July 2001, where he mentioned stuff about sex and excretory functions.

Um, that's Howard Stern. What the fuck did you think he was going to talk about?
I would also like to point out that I said the word 'fuck' twice above. Yet no one has been hurt. It's just a word! I can't believe we have a government agency to deal with this when there's a war.

I Love Bootleggers!
Whitestripes.net has an mp3 of the Jack White/ Bob Dylan collaboration from the other night. It sounds pretty damn good so far.

At Least They Didn't Take the Blue Suede Shoes
Thieves broke into the Elvis-A-Rama museum in Vegas and made off with $300,000 worth of loot. Sounds like they went for the jewelry and gold (a gold plated pistol was taken). The blue suede shoes, as the title implies, are still there.

The Libertines' new single will be "Can't Stand You", which was recorded for the 'Friday Night With Jonathan Ross Show'. You can hear a live version of the song at this site.

A Rolling Stones singles box set is in the works

Two member of Ozomatli and their manager were arrested at SXSW after a performance spilled out onto the street.

The new Streets album A Grand Don't Come For Free is scheduled for a May 10 release in the UK, so maybe May 11 here? Ordinarily I wouldn't care, but the new single is great and you can pick it up at Said the Gramophone.

The Hives have a new website. It's probably the coolest band website I've ever seen. But now the new album is coming out in the summer instead of spring. Dammit.
(Link via Largehearted Boy)

Thursday, March 18, 2004

What? You Mean Throwing Metal Objects Into A Crowd Could Hurt Someone?
Courtney Love faces reckless endagerment and third-degree assault charges after throwing her mic stand into the audience at a show in New York last night. Apparently some guy was hit in the head and had to be taken to a hospital.

I know it's 'rock' to throw things into the crowd, but seriously? Mic stands, guitars...how are those not going to hit someone? Sometimes I wonder where peoples' brains are.

I Knew I Was Going to Regret Missing Those Dylan Shows
Bob Dylan was playing the last of three shows in Detroit when Jack White decided to hop onstage to play "Ball and Biscuit".

Hey, I was just checking for some dates out here in LA (there still aren't any), but there's a page with some songs from recent shows in real audio format.

Wednesday, March 17, 2004

Wilco Offering Downloads
Right now, you can pick up an mp3 or mp4 of a more finished-sounding version of "Cars Can't Escape". I think it's pretty damn good. Interestingly, a version of the song will be on former member Jay Bennett's upcoming solo album.

-Detroit's Metro Times interviews the Liars.

-All the Spinal Tap you've ever wanted to hear.

-A couple of bootlegs, one from Fountains of Wayne and one from a band called Girls in Hawaii. I've never heard of the latter so I picked up a couple of songs and they're pretty good.

Tuesday, March 16, 2004

Apparently, Money Can't Buy Taste
I've never been to Graceland, so I didn't know that visitors aren't allowed to see the second floor. Supposedly only Priscilla, Lisa-Marie, and Graceland's curator are allowed upstairs. However, this site claims it has authentic pictures. I can't imagine anyone seeing these rooms in person without going blind, so maybe that's why tourists aren't allowed up there.

New Kraftwerk Video
You can watch the video for "Aero Dynamik" here. It looks like Kraftwerk was played by the Blue Man Group.

Somebody decided to combine The Black Album with Weezer's Blue Album. You can hear the results here. It's not too bad, actually.
The Yeah Yeah Yeahs review is now up. With four minutes to spare, I still managed to have it up Monday. It has been a scarily productive day.

[Edit: Hey! The clock on my computer said it was 11:56!]

Monday, March 15, 2004

Okay, the Yeah Yeah Yeahs pictures are up. They're a really fun band to photograph, but it's also challenging, because no one (well, except for the drummer) stands still for more than three seconds. And my camera takes three seconds between the time I hit the button and the time it takes the picture.
Anthems of Codependency
I've been listening to a lot of early 60s kitsch pop, so I'll post some of those.

"Maybe I Know"- Lesley Gore
This is the same girl who sang "It's My Party". I want to smack her upside the head. Well, not her, but the protagonist of the song. It's some girl who knows her boyfriend is cheating, her friends say he treats her like crap, but she's totally delusional and thinks he really loves her. Dumbass. But while the lyrics annoy the hell out of me, the melody and music are undeniable. And it has hand claps! That alone makes it a great pop song.

"I've Told Every Little Star"- Linda Scott
Ooh, a string section! This song makes me feel like I'm sitting in a malt shop in the fifties. Even though this song came out in the early 60s. The lyrics are unabashedly syrupy and therefore, cheesy. It's really the stereotypical oldies song. Not that there's anything wrong with that.

"Rhythm of the Rain"- The Cascades
It seems that songs during this time really like to use sound effects. Ever heard the original version of the Pearl Jam hit "Last Kiss"? The sound effects for the car crash are so over the top that it's comical. In this song it's just some rain sound effects at the beginning and end. A little more mellow than the other two, but it has...a xylophone? Well, whatever it is, it makes this bright 'ping' sound, which is necessary in the background of any golden oldie.

Sunday, March 14, 2004

Ziggy Stardust, Eat Your Heart Out

I'm not going to flake out on the Yeah Yeah Yeahs review/photo gallery, it's just going to take a while longer than I expected. I literally took a hundred pictures. So now I have to pick out maybe 30 favorites, and I do all my HTML by hand, so hopefully everything will be up by tonight or Monday.

Needless to say, the show kicked ass.

Saturday, March 13, 2004

I Knew He Was Crazy, But I Didn't Know He Was THAT Crazy
I didn't know that when Axl Rose made audiences wait, he was actually consulting his psychic (what kind of psychic couldn't predict that holding up the show was going to piss off the audience?). And that Izzy Stradlin quit the band after he was told he wasn't allowed to step forward during his guitar solos. And then Slash quit after Axl hired a school friend to tell him what to do onstage.

A history of Guns N Roses is here.

Worth Watching
Tomorrow the Trio network is supposed to air Johnny Cash's 1969 performance at San Quentin Penitentiary. I'd definitely watch. If I had a TV.

If all goes well, I should have some pictures and a review of tonight's Yeah Yeah Yeahs show up tomorrow or Monday. I may comment on the Franz Ferdinand and Von Bondies albums tomorrow. If I feel like it.

Friday, March 12, 2004

Le Tigre Signs With Strummer
...joining bands like the Mars Volta and the Rapture. A new album should be released in late summer.

After 10 Years, the Trial Begins For the Accused Killer of Mia Zapata
Authorities have charged a 48-year-old fisherman after matching his DNA with saliva samples found on the Gits vocalist's body. The guy has previous convictions for kidnapping, battery and assault.

Things That Will Keep Surfacing Until We Die:

New, 'unpublished' Kurt Cobain interviews that give great insight into his plans after Nirvana and blah blah.

'New' songs by acclaimed artists who have been dead for over 20 years, like Nick Drake and Bob Marley.

I just hate it when you get those "Greatest Hits" packages that feature one new song (that usually isn't very good) and you're expected to buy the thing if you want to hear the song. Even though you already own EVERY FREAKIN SONG on the album.

Sometimes artists screw up and leave some great songs unreleased. Or sometimes they add too much junk on a song (are those trumpets REALLY necessary??)...etc. I started reading a book about the history of bootlegging, and the author mentioned in the introduction that sometimes it's necessary to save the songs from their writers. I agree.

And sometimes it's interesting to hear demos. I find the Velvet Underground's early drafts to be pretty surprising. "I'm Waiting For the Man" and "I Found A Reason" sound kinda countryish. What surprised me the most was "Sweet Jane". The final product is a masterpiece, but the demo? Incredibly bland. I find that encouraging in a way. It shows even the Velvet Underground didn't always get things right the first time.

However, most of the time, these unreleased tracks have no redeeming value whatsoever. I know if I released, say, three incredible albums and then died at 27, I'd be furious if someone made a b-sides record, or released some awful demos I made. It dilutes the quality of the catalog. Even worse, when these crap outtakes are released as singles, it can give a first time listener the wrong impression. I remember back when I was in 6th grade everyone was making a huge fuss about that unreleased Beatles tune "Free As A Bird". I had never heard a Beatles song before. So I heard that one and I thought, "This band SUCKS! Why the hell do so many people like them?" Nobody bothered to explain to me that that song was probably the worst they ever did. And should Nirvana's last word on the charts be "You Know You're Right"? Some songs are best left for bootlegs.

Thursday, March 11, 2004

The Dallas Observer has an Old 97s tour diary, written by guitarist Ken Bethea.

The LA Weekly has a ton of stuff this week:

A feature on Omaha and Saddle Creek

An article about former Sex Pistol Steve Jones' radio show on the much hyped Indie 103.1

An interview with Kristen Hersh

Wednesday, March 10, 2004

Franz Ferdinand Sign With Epic
The licensing deal is said to be worth 1.5 million pounds, so that's um, around...2.25 million dollars? I don't know, I suck at math. But it's a lot of money.

Josh Homme Discusses the QOTSA Split
He more or less told NME that Nick Oliveri was "a tornado" and basically said he was sick of cleaning up his mess. He goes on to say:

"But I think Nick started believing our press and thinking that he's gotta be the next Sid Vicious or something. And I think Sid Vicious is a badass, but also I think Sid Vicious is a dumb drug addict who couldn't play bass and never wrote a song, and if he stayed alive most guys would have went, 'This guy's a fucking worthless piece of shit.' And so I don't think that's something to aspire to."

That Franz Ferdinand article reminded me of a column I saw in Hits Daily Double (registration required) a few days ago that mentioned all the A&R people at the band's show in New York. Another thing that the article mentioned was:

Early buzz hitting the streets on Saddle Creek act Rilo Kiley, as the musical ensemble from Echo Park, CA (that's next to Silverlake, for all you bridge-and-tunnel folks) has just signed on with managers Dave Holmes and Darin Harmon at DC Music. The group is putting final touches on a new record produced by Omaha studio whiz Mike Mogis and super-indie producer Mark Trombino. Will the disc be released on Saddle Creek or a new label home? Hmmm.

For those of you who have never heard Rilo Kiley, they're a great band, and you should check out these mp3s:

"The Execution of All Things"

"With Arms Outstretched"

Tuesday, March 09, 2004

Jack White Isn't Going to Jail
Did anyone actually think he would? According to the Detroit Free Press, he has to pay a $500 fine, $250 in court costs, and has to take some anger management classes. He's also not allowed to contact Jason Von Bondie, so don't expect him to be at the Von Bondies' record release party tonight.
Even More Proof That the 90s Are the New 80s
I've said it a million times, and it looks like now Stylus agrees with me. Just seeing pictures of those ridiculous slap bracelets made me giggle. I used to have a magenta leopard print one. Yes, I had no taste. Though I can't wait until flannel shirts come back. They were comfy.

I Don't Have Any News...Are Rumors Okay?
Yeah, so awhile back I posted that NIN, the Pixies, and the Libertines were supposedly in talks to be on the Lollapalooza tour. And then there was nothing about Lollapalooza for awhile. Nothing. Now a bunch of crap is coming up. New bands being mentioned:

Interpol, Morrissey, Flaming Lips, the Darkness, The String Cheese Incident, Gomez, Sonic Youth

If there's any truth to these rumors (frankly I have no clue) it looks like maybe the organizers learned (perhaps from Coachella), that making a festival that appeals to people who actually, you know, buy records, will sell tickets.

[Edit: Oh, there's an article about some of this. The festival's booking agent says, "...the coolest thing people want me to do is put Loretta Lynn together with Jack White..." It's a different guy this year, so perhaps the suckage of last year will not be repeated.]

Speaking of the Pixies, the buzz is picking up on that rumored Cure/Pixies/Love & Rockets package tour for this summer, with a rumor that things might kick off in mid-August at Dodger Stadium.

Local News
The Von Bondies are gonna play at Amoeba on the 25th.

I Love the Internet!
If you wonder why I post so much crap about the Beatles, it's because I have a class this semester about them. Yup, it's an entire class about the Beatles. It rules. Anyway, last night my teacher played us some earlier takes of "Strawberry Fields Forever" (the released version of the song is actually take 7 and mix 26 put together). I may be crazy, but I preferred the earlier takes to the finished product. So I asked my teacher where he got them. He showed me a bootleg CD that he picked up in 1988. The label was probably out of business by now, and even if it wasn't, I'd have a hell of a time finding it. So, I come home, boot up my computer, and within a matter of minutes I have all the early takes I heard in class.

If you're curious:

"Strawberry Fields Forever" Take 1 [download and add '.mp3']
"Strawberry Fields Forever" Takes 2, 3, and 4
"Strawberry Fields Forever" Take 7 [download and add '.mp3']

I got them from this page, which appears to have every possible take the Beatles have done (that's on the bootleg market), plus Ed Sullivan performances and video clips.

Monday, March 08, 2004

One Hit Wonders Who Deserved Better
Nine times out of ten, a band is a one hit wonder because the rest of their record sucks. But here are two bands that had hits in the late 90s who could actually write good songs.

"Are You Ready For the Fallout"- Fastball
If you remember them at all, you probably remember them for "The Way", that song about people who go on a trip in a Winnebago and die (well, there were a lot of interpretations for that song). Although, there was that other single that was getting some play on VH1, but it was really bad, so I'm going to pretend it doesn't exist. Anyway, this is my favorite song of theirs, off of their first record, Make Your Mama Proud. It sounds like the singer is lecturing a young man who gets into a lot of bar fights. I mostly love the music, the jangly guitar intro and the cool bassline and the vocal melody. And the line "Soon you will learn how to swallow a tear/ so when you are old you can cry in your beer".

"Singing In My Sleep"- Semisonic
"Closing time, every new beginning comes from some other beginning's end." Remember that one? I think that was one of the weaker songs on their album. This one here is probably my favorite, it's a song about how this dude falls in love with a girl because of the killer mix tape she made him. At least that's what I got from it. It's just a great pop song.
Obsession of the Week
Back when the Beatles had just returned from their first trip to America, their German label, Odeon, demanded they re-record their biggest hits, "She Loves You" and "I Want to Hold Your Hand" in German, because the label didn't think non-German language records would sell. Therefore, "She Loves You" became "Sie Liebt Dich" and "I Wanna Hold Your Hand" became "Komm Gib Mir Deine Hand". I cannot stop listening to them.

Saturday, March 06, 2004

Horror Schlock
If there's anything more ridiculous than slasher flicks, it's the soundtrack that accompanies them. As this Alice Cooper song (mp3/ lyrics) attests:

Oh, but he's back
He's the man behind the mask
And he's out of control
He's back
The man behind the mask
And he crawled out of his hole

It's from one of the myriad Friday the 13th movies. And it features a generous amount of synth, of course.

Ticketbastard Must Be Stopped!
Holy shit! I just tried to buy a ticket for the Darkness a minute ago, and the system demands I select that I live in a country other than the US, so my billing information won't work anyway. But get this. The tickets have a face value of $15. If I placed my order, it would have cost me $27.50. That's almost $30, or almost a 100% markup! [Edit: My mother suggested I put an exact figure on that markup. It's 83%, which is pretty fucking bad.] I knew their fees were bad, but I didn't realize they were THAT bad! Shit. Maybe I should just stop buying tickets from Ticketbastard, and just buy them from the scalpers outside the venue. I bet they're cheaper.

Sorry, I needed to vent. But then again, maybe I should turn this into some sort of feature article for the site. Who's Cheaper: Ticketbastard or Scalpers? Or, What's the Best Way to Get Tickets To A Show?

I might just do that.

Friday, March 05, 2004

TV on the Radio Video
You can see the video for "Staring at the Sun" here. It's very psychedelic.

Andre 3000: Juilliard Bound?
"I want to go to Juilliard to study classical music. I've been thinking about it for about a year. But things got kinda busy. This record took off. I can't be in school right now. But I'm taking saxophone and clarinet lessons. I'd study classical composition and music theory. Like, now, I was working on songs for Gwen Stefani's album, and I could tell her how to sing them but not the range."

He also says there will be two more OutKast albums.
(link via Donewaiting)

Local News
We're Number 1! Or rather, the I-5 is. This MSN article says it's the worst freeway in the country, and likens it to a dangerous parking lot.

Also, The Darkness have added a second show at the Henry Fonda (Sunday, April 18). Tix go on sale Saturday at 10 am. Just try not to buy them all in 3 minutes this time, okay people?

If you waited too long to get those Franz Ferdinand tickets (the Troubadour show is sold out), you can see the band at Amoeba on 3/15.

Thursday, March 04, 2004

Jimi Hendrix Made It Scream. Stevie Ray Vaughan Made It Cry. Eric Clapton Made It Rock.
The Fender Stratocaster turns 50.

I think it would be a fitting tribute to listen to the instrument in one of its finest hours.

Ladies and Gentlemen: Stevie Ray Vaughan's rendition of "Little Wing".
Hey, That Kinda Sounds Like Fun
A couple of anonymous people have created 'The Jay-Z Construction Set'. The kit includes:

Jay-Z's The Black Album a cappella vocals, hundreds of classic music samples and simple audio editing software that will allow users to make their own instrumentals.

Also included are nine CDs' worth of The Black Album remixes, including The Grey Album from DJ Danger Mouse, The Brown Album from producer Kev Brown and The Black Remixes from producer Ninth Wonder and various hip-hop clipart images to construct a custom CD cover.

Sounds like it should be on BitTorrent networks shortly. I wonder if there will be a mac version?

Coachella To Sell Out This Year?
A post from the moderator of the Coachella message board:

Our best year ever!

Due to the popularity of this years festival, we have decided to make this announcement. Our concern is for the people who have already booked airfare or accommodations, but were planning on waiting to buy festival tickets at the box office. In previous years tickets have always been available at the box office on the day of the festival, however this year it is very possible that the festival will sell out in advance. We strongly recommend purchasing your tickets in advance to assure entry.

"Family Guy" Returns!
New episodes are scheduled to hit TV in 2005. No word yet on whether shows will first appear on Fox or the Cartoon Network. This could inspire me to get a television.
(link via Chromewaves)

Ow! My Hopes of Reaching 1st Base!
Teen Girl Sqad goes on spring break. These cartoons crack me up because they totally remind me of middle school. That is, if the people I knew got ran over by trucks or attacked by giant robots, or swooped up by pteradactyls. The characters are pretty much spot on. I was What's Her Face.

Wednesday, March 03, 2004

"guitars just aren't enough any more"
Radiohead's Jonny Greenwood discusses the ondes martenot, says "It might be too late but it's something anyone can play and it really should have had the populist appeal of the Stylophone."

Don't worry, I don't know what a stylophone is either. Although, a theramin is that weird thing you hear in the background of the Beach Boys' "Good Vibrations".

"I'd be extremely depressed had someone else done this record"
The Guardian talks to DJ Danger Mouse about The Grey Album and the craziness surrounding it. In case you still don't have it, you can get the record here.


Billboard has more on the new Polyphonic Spree album. A new video for the song "Light and Day" will be put together by Michel Gondry.

Oh, speaking of Michel Gondry, you can watch a video he did for some band called Steriogram. The video is pretty cool, the song....not so much.

Someone bootlegged Monday's Libertines gig in Manchester. A few songs have been posted (zipped files):

"The Saga"
"Can't Stand Me"
"Last Post on the Bugle"

Tuesday, March 02, 2004

Some 76-year-old man threw molotov cocktails and attempted to fire rounds from an assault rifle at the home of a couple he believes cheated him out of a lottery win 16 years ago.

Because Network News Is An Insufferable Bore...
In some poll, 21 percent of people aged 18 to 29 cited "The Daily Show" and SNL as places where they regularly learned presidential campaign news. 23 percent chose more conventional news broadcasts.

This doesn't surprise me at all. Back in the day, when I had a tv, I'd make a point of tuning in to "The Daily Show". I never watched network news, because why bother? Might as well read a newspaper and avoid commercials. Not that I ever really did that much either. I don't understand why political coverage has to be so boring.

I may sound like a ditz or a ten-year-old, but I don't care. People like Al Franken and Michael Moore can make politics interesting, and even if you're a republican, you have to admit that they're entertaining, and that, through humor, they can coax people to think about various issues. Knowledge that was obtained in an entertaining fashion is no less valuable than knowledge obtained in a 'serious' fashion. Plus, their stuff is easier to read, and usually more to the point. I think if there were additional sources of political coverage that weren't such a pain in the ass there would be a higher voter turnout and a better informed public.

XTC Songwriter Pens TV Theme
Andy Partridge's "I Wonder Why the Wonderfalls" will open the new Fox show "Wonderfalls". It's nice to see a suit do something positive:

"Now that I'm old and fat and have some (very little, really) power, I found I was in a position to do a thing I only ever dreamed of before -- hire Andy Partridge. And have him write and record a song that would be heard by millions (well, we can hope) of people every bloody week. Which is really as it should be."

Monday, March 01, 2004

Gigli Sweeps Razzies
And does it ever deserve to. In case you didn't know, the Razzies award the worst films of the year. And, as a bad movie aficionado, I can tell you that Gigli is the worst film I've ever seen. Although, not the most incompetent. That goes to "Manos": Hands of Fate or Plan 9 From Outer Space.

I watched Gigli with my friends over Christmas break, intending to make fun of it. That still didn't make it very enjoyable. Two minutes into the film, the cat of the house started burrowing her head under a pillow on the couch. Really. It's one of those rare train wrecks in which every aspect of the film, save for possibly the cinematography, is as bad as it could possibly be.
I Hope I Die Before I Get Old
Last night's performances at the Oscars (with the exception of Mitch and Mickey, who were great), made me think that The Who were onto something. What a bunch of boring crap! Seriously, awards shows drag enough as it is. You don't need to have Sting there every year to put everyone to sleep.

In other words, I was supposed to go to the British Sea Power show yesterday, but I went to my friend's Oscar party instead. So there's no show review. Sorry.

PCs Should Die
I just checked something on one of the PCs in the library. For some reason, the left column on this blog is twice as big as it's supposed to be. I'll try to get that fixed eventually. I assure you my site looks great on my mac.
The Darkness NOT Gold In the States
A bunch of news sites have been reporting that the Darkness' album Permission to Land has hit gold status in the US of A. This article begs to differ. It maintains that, according to Nielsen Soundscan figures, the album has sold 304,000 copies, which is still pretty good, but a far cry from the 500,000 it needs to pass as gold.

[Edit: It has been brought to my attention that gold certifications are based on the number of units shipped, not sold. So Permission to Land is in fact a gold record.]

Pixies to Play New Material On Tour
They don't give a whole lot of details...
As for new songs, there's a Latvian lullaby, a Czech dirge and a Bulgarian ballad.

New mp3s
I've decided themes are too restrictive for posting mp3s. Although, I guess there kind of is one this week. Elvis. Although they're not Elvis songs.

"Hound Dog"- Big Mama Thornton
Hound Dog was Elvis' first hit, if I'm not mistaken (although, I'm 99.9% sure that he made his band do 30 takes of the tune, and he chose to release take 28. I remember the weirdest crap), but Big Mama Thornton had a hit with it first. Personally, I prefer her version of the song, where it's clear that the 'hound dog' is some loser ex of hers, which is more entertaining than a loser friend (which is what Elvis' version seems to be about). Plus, I just love her voice. It's one of those booming, mischevious, soul singer voices. I would consider trading an appendage for a voice like that.

"Elvis In Germany (Let's Celebrate)"- Gessle
I just found this recently. It's such a joyful, bombastic power pop song...it even has a horn section. I went to allmusic to look for more info about this artist, and I guess this song is from the solo album of the guitarist from Roxette. I don't really know anything about that, but even if that band sucked, if you enjoy pop you should still give this song a chance.

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