Tuesday, October 09, 2007

most folks complain about how lackluster saturday night live is these days, but this hit the spot!

Monday, September 24, 2007

Devendra's 'surprise' guest...

Tomorrow is the release date for the latest from freak-folk artist Devendra Banhart. Smokey Rolls Down Thunder Canyon will be released by XL Recordings in a regular jewel-case edition and a limited edition digipak with bonus artwork and a booklet (though I've yet to see this booklet to see if it's worth the extra scratch).
Last week I caught Banhart at the First Avenue in Minneapolis. He played a fantastic show that lasted nearly two hours and featured material from his previous releases and many of the songs from the new album. Backed by a five-piece band, and calling themselves Spiritual Boner, Banhart and co. were particularly impressive on "Shabop Shalom" and "Freely" - two of my favourites from Smokey, but perhaps the most impressive song of the night came from a 'surprise' guest.
I'm using quotation marks there because I'm still not convinced what happened was as spontaneous and capricious as Banhart would have the audience believe. About three-quarters of the way through the show, Banhart asked if anyone in the audience had written any songs lately and a few people put up their hands, including a woman a couple people back from the front. He then asked her to come up on stage and play a song - giving her his guitar, stool and mic to do so.
The woman said she had driven from Cleveland to attend the show and proceeded to sing a song called "The Moon and I," which can be found here. It was one of those moments that before she sang, one thinks "oh god, this could be terrible." But as the song went on, trepidation turned to astonishment at what a good song it was and what a crazy moment to be witnessing in the middle of another artists' show. That's what leads me to believe Dina Rae was a plant of sorts - she just seemed too good to be true, and very at ease for someone who was just given the spotlight in a very packed First Avenue.
But if she wasn't a plant then what an incredible performer to have seized the opportunity - and to be quite frank, if she was a plant, do I really care as long as she was good? What could have been a car-crash in the middle of an incredible show ended up being one of my personal highlights, and as a music fan I guess I shouldn't be too picky about whether I saw something that was rehearsed or entirely spontaneous, because the basic fact is, I saw it.

If you want to hear some of the new Devendra Banhart record, he's posted a few songs on his web page.

Saturday, August 25, 2007

It's time to redouble my efforts to post on this blog more often. I've even subscribed to it in Google Reader, which is ruling my life right now. Give me an RSS feed, and I'll subscribe to it. I can't wait until google runs the world. All of their shit is so hot.

Speaking of hot, did you see on stereogum that some loser got Jenna Fischer, aka Pam from the office to star in his video. I was just thinking today about how I should probably get cable in time for the next season of The Office. Karen's great, but Pam is what's really good.

I love that The Big O is in the background. Another reason to get cable. Baseball. Howaboutdem Cubbies!?

If you follow lolcats as closely as I do, then you should be just as floored as I am to learn of The Laugh Out Loud Cats. (Via The Stencil, of course.)

Tay Zonday goes 8-bit like woah.

And finally, I was going to send this to Matt, but why not just give it to teh entire innernets? Non-Prophets - All word No Play. Good music is cool music.

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Stop The Insanity and Vote Yes to this very important bill on election day!

Live From Congress: The Skull Fucking Bill Of 2007

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Eagle-eyed Dave Leibl found this one and passed it on and I can't not pass it on in turn. Bluegrass artist Dawn Landes does a wonderful interpretation of Peter, Bjorn & John's "Young Folks" that comes across as an honest - not joke-y - rendition. I absolutely love the harmonica/fiddle line that replaces the whistling of the original and the old-cat chorus singers.
Step aside Kanye West, your version pales in comparison. (Although, I admit I'm looking forward to your Graduation on September 11)

Monday, August 13, 2007

Friday, July 27, 2007

The Best Things I've Seen Today.

Okay, yesterday's blog was all about something I'm utterly serious about - great music and solid reissues.
Today I bring you the lighter side of things with a couple of videos that are the best things I've seen today.

This one's just a link - Kanye West's official site features this brilliant spoof.

The other I'm embedding here for your viewing pleasure - apparently this was choreographed/performed by inmates at a prison in the Phillipines. And ended up on youtube for everyone in the world to be astonished at. While we run the risk of prison riots and 'guest MCs' from Stony on 101.5, they've got some sort of "High School Musical" inmate rehabilitation program running in the land of Tagalog.

Thursday, July 26, 2007

Hindsight 20/20

Folks who know me (and even a few who don't 'know me') are aware of my love of good soul music and over the last year or so, one of the most reliable sources has been the inestimable Numero Group record label. These cats have cornered the market on compilations, out-manoeuvring Rhino for quality and rarity (don't get me wrong, I still dig Rhino and would love to get my hands on this).
Their two entries in the Cult Cargo series (Belize City Boil-Up & Grand Bahama Goombay) take you on a trip to some tropical paradises for their home-grown take on funk, soul and jazz), while the Eccentric Soul series excavates the histories of lesser-known soul labels in the U.S. ('cause everyone knows Motown and Stax, but who's heard of Prix and Twinight?). PopMatters, a great little site I frequent just did a solid feature on Numero Group, interviewing one of the masterminds behind the label, Andrew Gilstrap. Thought I'd share the link to it here and recommend you hit your local record shop and check their releases out. I know Music Trader in Winnipeg's brought in several of the titles at my recommendation.

The article can be found here.

One other article worth checking out is in the August/September issue of Global Rhythm. (Anoushka Shankar and Karsh Kale are on the cover). There's a couple pages on the history of Fania Records and Nuyorican Salsa, which is seeing a bit of a re-emergence lately thanks to the sale of the Fania archives to Florida-based Emusic. They've taken to reissuing some of the original releases on LP and CD, and have put together some solid 'best ofs'
and compilations that cherry-pick the cream of the salsa crop. Now admittedly some of you may cringe when you hear 'salsa' and think of the self-important jackanapes who hold court in the basement of the Empire, but this is some dope music. I recently bought Mongo Santamaria's "Hey Sister" and The Latinaires "Camel Walk" on LP and can't stop playing them. And I'm REALLY hoping Dusty Groove get's this shit back in stock asap so I can order it up.

Anyway, just thought if you should know, if you're looking for some dope tunes for the hot summer days, look no further than Fania and Numero Group.

Monday, May 07, 2007

Friday, April 27, 2007

Recently Meesh and I rented Jesus Camp, and when it wasn't squirm-inducingly uncomfortable - (seriously, the methods the adults are using to 'instill' Christ in these children are classic brainwashing techniques - I worry especially for the little blond boy with the bowl cut. There's a good chance he's going to take his own life or someone else's later in life) - it was laughable the way the evangelicals have incorporated pop-culture into their 'praise.' There's a bewildering dance number with kids in camo gear and face paint holding 'crosses' that verge on menacing weapons (there's a clip of this in the show preview available at Apple's trailer site) and there's a 'hip-hop' performance in church that's so ridic- it's ridonk-ulous.
What on earth (or heaven) is possessing these folks to attempt such blatantly uncool efforts at being cool?
Well, I don't have the answer to that, but I do have the most recent uncool effort I've encountered, right here for your viewing (dis)pleasure:

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

As we head into Round Two of the NHL Playoffs, let us reflect on some of the best moments of the past, beginning with this one:

It is important to point out that Hextall was scoring (and gooning) back in his Brandon Wheat King days, when my dad was the team doc!

And you certainly can't beat the combination of Hextall and Canada Dry. No Ron, you definitely don't have to be sweet to be good!

this is great on so many levels . . . fonzie, flintstone AND john ritter!

Friday, April 13, 2007

It's just like a mini-mall!

Monday, April 09, 2007

Do you have to use so many cuss words?

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Jack Bauer, Eat Your Heart Out

Monday, March 26, 2007

En tu grupo siempre hay uno de estos...

Thursday, March 22, 2007

I found this on my hard drive. It makes me so happy.

Discobelle has another raratat remix up

Thursday, March 15, 2007

A Joke and Some Mixes

  • The above image is a joke; there is no all-over-print hoodie all-over-print hoodie all-over-print hoodie... yet. It's so meta-meta et cetera meta yadda that it flies, like, 10 ft. above my head. It is the work of an artist named Andrew Bell, and was discovered at High Snobiety.
  • I found a treasure trove of mixes that might be old news to some, but is completely new to me. Discovered via Music Like Dirt is DFA Records Radio Mix Series, a pretty amazing series of downloadable mixes. Check 'em out.
  • If anybody finds Ratatat's latest Remix album, please let me know. I will love you.

Wednesday, March 07, 2007

Go Swimming With Lorenzo

Sunday, February 25, 2007

ferrell + baldwin = genius!

Saturday, February 24, 2007

don't fuck with Sugar Ray!

man, I love goalie fights . . . I kept waiting for Bryan Murray to slip and nut himself on the boards.