beantown, here she comes

Last nite we rounded up some of the troops to celebrate Abby "Chitown" Chiat's final days in Mpls, as this weekend she is moving to lovely Boston MA - where salary, benefits & "NOMAR!" catcalls await her. We convened @ what was formerly The Pickled Parrot in Uptown for dinner, after which a few of us went to The Independent for additional drinks. Some photos (including a lousy one of me w/the departing lady) to commemorate the event:

We'll miss you Abby.

dance to the underground

After taking the Timberwolves to the NBA championship w/mr rosen, I went downtown to the Triple Rock for some late-nite rawk. As I walked in, live hip-hoppers Heiruspecs were already onstage & dishing out the rhymes. I was impressed, & I wish their merch guy had stuck around until the end of the show (when I was considering purchases). What followed was a double-shot of NYC new-wave-dance-punk by The Fever & Radio 4 that was highly enjoyable. Good times, ladies & gents.

MP3 The Fever - "Ladyfingers" from the Pink on Pink EP
MP3 The Fever - "Ladyfingers (Krushed Glass remix)" from the Ladyfingers/Glamourous Life 12"
MP3 The Fever - "Gray Ghost" from the upcoming LP Red Bedroom, out May 18

MP3 Radio 4 - "Get Set To Fall Out" from The New Song & Dance
MP3 Radio 4 - "How The Stars Got Crossed" from The New Song & Dance
MP3 Radio 4 - "Calling All Enthusiasts" from the Gotham!
MP3 Radio 4 - "Eyes Wide Open" from the Gotham!
MP3 Radio 4 - "Dance to the Underground" from the eponymous 12" single

Look for a more thorough review of this show in the coming days @ How Was The Show?, which reviews Twin Cities rock shows etc. I talked to a guy who was going to be writing a review, and he was taking notes & everything. Here's a review of the Rapture/BRMC gig from a few weeks ago, since I never got around to mentioning it. My ears still hurt a little from all that BRMC.

30 helens agree

While I've had it for months, the Kids in the Hall Season 1 DVD comes out today in stores & everybody should go out & buy it. Do I even need to explain why? Okay.

First year highlights include: the bass player, the Daves I know, sketch comedy - what is it?, Citizen Kane, what's with all the hoopla?, Premise Beach, Running Faggot, nobody home, & I could go on & on & on...

I will be picking up the new ER Season 2 DVD set today, because I've developed into an ER-junkie over the years. Despite my best (if you can call them that) efforts, I just can't get myself off of the skag. Save me, Doctor Carter!

i know black people

This is so offensive I can barely sit still. Over at Dubya's official campaign site, there are various photo galleries, including one entitled "national security" that features President Bush w/troops, flags, & army jackets. While that one is just plain stupid, there's also an appalling gallery called "compassion", which shows George W. Bush with black people. "Oh look, he spends time w/minorities - he's so compassionate!!" I can't believe people fall for this bullsh**. I want to puke.

My home state is disgraced w/the President's presence today, where Bush will be eating lunch in the upscale suburb of Edina, MN. Don't choke on the cake, George.

why would a banana grab another banana?

Approximately 750K-1 million people will be descending on Washington D.C. today for the March For Women's Lives, which I've heard about over & over & over while tuning into Air America during the last month. Being a fancy-pants-liberal-elitist & all, I wish I could actually be in the nation's capital to show my support - but there's no way I'm missing tonite's Strokes show. For all that do make it out to the march (or are sponsoring someone's journey out there), I give you huge mad props. Well done, ladies & gents!

Tonite may be one of last chances (or possibly THE last chance) for you to catch what may be the funniest show on TV, Arrested Development. Fox may or may not bring the show back for a second season, and tonite is being touted as the 1st season "finale" - which is untrue. The recent Bush "press conference" bumped an episode of 24 to last sunday, which bumped AD out of its normal time slot. So tonite's show is the 2nd to last episode of the season, with the real finale airing June 6, outside of May sweeps for reasons beyond understanding.

tried it once & they liked it

Sorry for the lack of postings during the last few days. I've just gotten a whole bunch of new music that I have yet to plow through, so I need a little time to get back up to speed. In the meantime, here are some live tunes by NYC's The Strokes (who include yet another former NYU film rocker) to coincide w/Sunday's gig @ First Avenue, which I will be attending w/Rachel, JRDN, and Evan (I think). Good times are expected...

MP3 The Strokes - "Ze Newie (Between Love & Hate)" (live)
This is an early version of what became "Between Love & Hate" on 2003's Room on Fire. I heard a similar version when I saw them play Radio City back in August of 2002. It had no title back then, so they just called it "Ze Newie" at the time.

MP3 The Strokes - "SOMA" (live)
This is a fairly straightforward live version of "SOMA," just another great track from the now classic 2001 debut, Is This It? On an only slighty unrelated topic, I managed to read Brave New World during high school and recall enjoying it quite a bit. Huxley, you mad genius!

MP3 The Strokes - "In Her Prime" (live)
MP3 The Strokes - "Rhythm Song" (live)
Here are two raw-sounding, unreleased Strokes songs that you're unlikely to hear in concert. I have no idea where or when I found these tracks, but I found them nonetheless. BTW: If I am mistaken & these are actually cover songs, please feel free to let me know. I don't mind standing corrected - it helps to straighten out my back.

rock & roll, every nite

Tonite, I will be in attendance for game 2 of Wolves/Nuggets here in Mpls. But for all my New Yorkers out there, I strongly suggest you head out to ye ole Tribeca Rock Club for a battle of the bands: Jersey's RANA vs Colorado's Rose Hill Drive. Here's the lowdown:

Wednesday, April 21
Tribeca Rock Club
16 Warren Street, NYC
$12, ages 18+

7:30pm - RANA
8:30pm - Rose Hill Drive
9:45pm - RANA

According to TRC's website, "This is going to be a night of 100% shameless rock and roll and rock again. The RANA WRAPAROUND ROCK SANDWICH will begin with a set from RANA at 7:30 PM, followed by a set from Rose Hill Drive at 8:30 PM, then another long kick-ass set from RANA starting at 10:00 PM. Put on your seat belts, kids, this is going to be a wild ride!" The last RANA event @ TRC has already garnered legendary status - so do not miss this show!

MP3 RANA - "Backstage Pass"
This is an old school RANA tune, written back in 2000 (correct me if I'm wrong) during the Fourteen Ways to Sink a Penny sessions & included on the Your Brain Will Change EP (2001). You will usually hear this song closing out a particularly rawkin' set - it's notorious for being played at the end of RANA's most revered shows. It's a testament to the rock 'n' roll grind & a tongue-in-cheek (correct me if I'm wrong) comment on tourbus groupies. A classic.

BTW: RANA just got burgled while out in CA, so do me a favor & lend them your support. It would also be nice if you'd buy 'em a round, eh?

we want the death of rock 'n' roll

My #2 album of 2003, right behind New Porn's Electric Version, was Shine A Light, the Sub Pop debut by Guelph, Ontario's The Constantines. This disc was a splurge purchase I made @ the Fetus after reading a review of it on Pitchfork, and boy, it was a good one. It took a few listens for me to penetrate its dense post-punk, but the more I listened to it - the more I listened to it, the more I listened to it, etc. Really great stuff - I'm still shocked that it failed to make Pitchfork's year-end top 50.

MP3 The Constantines - "Arizona" from 2001's self-titled LP
MP3 The Constantines - "Young Lions" from Shine A Light
MP3 The Constantines - "Nighttime/Anytime (It's Alright)" the 1st single from Shine A Light

BTW: A few additional downloads can be found @ their official site.

I managed to catch The Constantines @ the Triple Rock 10/1/03 (opening for the highly-overated IMO Weakerthans), and I can testify that they are definitely worth seeing. I'm still baffled as to how frontman Bry Webb manages to scratch out his best Springsteen impersonation "night after night." Here are some upcoming tourdates - catch 'em if you can:

Three Gut Records 4th Anniversary Tour
w/The Constantines and The Jim Guthrie Band

Apr 22 - Thunder Bay, ON SOUNDCHECKS
Apr 23 - Winnipeg, MB PYRAMID CABARET
Apr 24 - Saskatoon, SK LOUIS U OF
Apr 26 - Regina, SK THE STATE
Apr 28 - Canmore, AB CANMORE HOTEL
Apr 29 - Calgary, AB LIBERTY LOUNGE
Apr 30 - Edmonton, Ab SIDETRACK
May 01 - Edmonton, AB SEEDY'S
May 03 - Victoria, BC LOGAN'S
May 04 - Vancouver, BC BRICKYARD

May 05 - Seattle, WA CROCODILE
May 06 - Portland, OR DANTE'S
May 08 - San Francisco, CA CAFE NuDORD
May 09 - Los Angeles, CA SPACELAND
May 10 - San Diego, CA CASBAH
May 11 - Tuscon, AZ CONGRESS
May 13 - Denton, TX TBA
May 14 - Austin, TX EMO'S *
May 15 - Austin, TX EMO'S *
May 17 - Lawrence, KS  THE JACKPOT +
May 18 - St Louis, MO THE ROCKIT BAR
May 19 - Chicago, IL EMPTY BOTTLE
May 21 - Ottawa, ON TULIP FESTIVAL

* w/Lungfish
+ w/Clinic

waiting for a signal or a sound

Despite nasty spring weather & Wolves/Nuggets game one, I still managed to make it out to the Triple Rock sunday nite to catch NYC's TV on the Radio drop their unique style of "art"-rock on Mpls. Lead singer Tunde Adebimpe is a NYU Film grad just like myself & Karen O - so why aren't I a rock star? Oh yeah...musical talent - I need to get me some of that.

Here's the title track off of 2003's Young Liars EP:

MP3 TV on the Radio - "Young Liars"

unfinished business

After re-visiting Volume 1 on wednesday, I went w/JRDN, Lisa & others to take in Kill Bill Vol. 2 on friday nite. Good times were had, and quality cinema was enjoyed. #2 is somewhat slower & more talky than #1, but if you look at the two movies together as a whole, you'll see that Tarantino's structure works quite nicely. I look forward to seeing the whole thing as one flick, which supposedly will be released into theaters (before coming to DVD I suppose) sometime around X-Mas '04.

Today's music comes from the opening of #1 and the outro to #2:

MP3 Nancy Sinatra - "Bang Bang"
MP3 Chingon - "Malaguena Salerosa"

monkey gone to heaven

I did not have the pleasure/honor of attending the first Pixies reunion gig @ the Fine Line this past Tuesday, but I have gotten my hands on the SBD ("soundboard" for the uninitiated) recording of the show. Above is the hand-written setlist, and here are the first two songs performed by the lords of indie rock in 12 years:

MP3 Pixies - "Bone Machine" (live 4/13/04)
MP3 Pixies - "Wave of Mutilation" (live 4/13/04)

i am mr brightside

I corrected yesterday's post, but I'd like to reiterate that The Killers, despite their British-based website, are not from jolly-ol' England. No, they hail from sin city itself - Las Vegas NV USA - and I expect that you'll be hearing more about these guys, especially after their LP drops this summer. They only played a short set last nite, but they were pretty darn impressive. While solid, stellastarr* was kind of a let down afterwards IMO. Still, good times were had...

claiming the west for the sake of manifest destiny

Kevin Garnett (left) & Latrell Sprewell (right) look on as Sam Cassell (center)
clowns around on the bench in the final minutes of their win over Memphis.
AP Photo/Matthew Craig

In their final regular season game, the Minnesota Timberwolves clinched the #1 seed in the wild wild western conference with a 107-90 rout of the Memphis Grizzlies. As has been noted at nauseum, the Wolves have yet to make it out of the first round in their team history - but that should change this season w/the addition of playoff vets Sam Cassell, Latrell Sprewell, and even head cheerleader Mark Madsen to support soon-to-be-MVP Kevin Garnett, the Big Ticket himself, on his quest for a title. The Wolves will play host to rookie sensation Carmelo Anthony & #8 seed Denver this Sunday (4/18) for game one of that series.

rock out @ the entry tonite

Tonight the 7th Street Entry @ First Avenue hosts a double bill of NYC rockers stellastarr* and Vegas upstarts The Killers that should provide for an entertaining evening (I'll gladly skip The Apprentice finale). So here's a couple stellastarr* tunes off of their self-titled LP:

MP3 stellastarr* - "My Coco"
MP3 stellastarr* - "Jenny"

I would have posted The Killers' new single "Somebody Told Me," but the iTunes store accidentally gave me George Michael's live version of "Somebody To Love" instead & I'm still waiting for the Apple support folks to get back to me. As you might imagine, I am not happy. So instead, here's the streaming music video of the Killers song:

The Killers - "Somebody Told Me" video hi-res WMV lo-res WMV hi-res RM lo-res RM

we are a brutal kind

MOV The Shins on Gilmore Girls - "So Says I" (12.1mb)

In case you missed it because you were gawking @ Bush last nite, here's a clip of The Shins from Gilmore Girls. You can make out the opening strands of "The Laws Have Changed" MP3 by the New Pornographers - another one of my top ten singles of 2003 - playing in the background after "So Says I" MP3. This should tell you a lot about this show's quality taste in music, which I tend to agree with if I wasn't being clear. Also, Lauren Graham is very funny, which helps.

Oh, and here are some more music video links!

The New Pornographers - "The Laws Have Changed" video MOV (26.6mb) 56k RM hi-speed RM
The Shins - "So Says I" video hi-res MOV (15.3mb) lo-res MOV (2.2mb)

trading sammy sosa was not his biggest mistake

MP3 The Mendoza Line - "Mistakes Were Made"

Here's transcript of one of the lowest points of last nite's "Presidential" press conference, the first since March 2003 (and what a farce that was):
Question: You’ve looked back before 9/11 for what mistakes might have been made. After 9/11, what would your biggest mistake be, would you say, and what lessons have learned from it?

BUSH: I wish you’d have given me this written question ahead of time so I could plan for it.

John, I’m sure historians will look back and say, gosh, he could’ve done it better this way or that way. You know, I just — I’m sure something will pop into my head here in the midst of this press conference, with all the pressure of trying to come up with answer, but it hadn’t yet.

I would’ve gone into Afghanistan the way we went into Afghanistan. Even knowing what I know today about the stockpiles of weapons, I still would’ve called upon the world to deal with Saddam Hussein. See, I’m of the belief that we’ll find out the truth on the weapons. That’s why we sent up the independent commission. I look forward to hearing the truth as to exactly where they are. They could still be there. They could be hidden, like the 50 tons of mustard gas in a turkey farm. One of the things that Charlie Duelfer talked about was that he was surprised of the level of intimidation he found amongst people who should know about weapons and their fear of talking about them because they don’t want to be killed.

You know, there’s this kind of — there’s a terror still in the soul of some of the people in Iraq. They’re worried about getting killed, and therefore they’re not going to talk. But it’ll all settle out, John. We’ll find out the truth about the weapons at some point in time.

However, the fact that he had the capacity to make them bothers me today just like it would have bothered me then. He’s a dangerous man. He’s a man who actually not only had weapons of mass destruction — the reason I can say that with certainty is because he used them. And I have no doubt in my mind that he would like to have inflicted harm, or paid people to inflict harm, or trained people to inflict harm, on America, because he hated us.

I hope — I don’t want to sound like I have made no mistakes. I’m confident I have. I just haven’t — you just put me under the spot here, and maybe I’m not as quick on my feet as I should be in coming up with one.

That doesn't do justice to all the "umms" and "ahhs" as he was searching for an "answer." My sista said she felt sorry for him at that moment, since he obviously wasn't prepared for that question (somebody's getting fired). I think it's ridiculous to feel sorry for a guy who can't answer a question or admit a mistake, because it shouldn't matter whether he's a dolt or not - he's the f**king president, and him being that unprepared for a direct & relatively uncomplicated question is insanity.

And boy, it looked like answering all those questions was really tiring for Mr. Bush. You'd hardly believe that he just got back from vacation in Texas, where he spent the week fishing w/NRA reps while Iraq burned. Ugh. Just my $0.02.

In (barely) related news, Tuesday's press conference has displaced a few of my favorite TV shows. Fans of Fox's 24 take note, because a new episode will be airing this coming Sunday (4/18) @ 9pm ET/8pm CT. Because of this schedule change, America will be deprived of the funniest show on TV, Arrested Development for a week. You have all been forewarned.

gilmore groupies

Tune into the WB tonite (4/13) & catch The Shins shilling for the very funny Gilmore Girls. In this episode, apparently the junior Gilmore girl is off on spring break (I'm haunted by faint memories of 90210) from Yale and she goes to see everyone's favorite Sub Pop indie popsters. Good choice as always, Rory.

MP3 The Shins - "Kissing The Lipless"
The lead-off track from 2003's outstanding Chutes Too Narrow was immediately my favorite. It has its moments of pop bliss, but it also has its moments of balls out rock. Just like I like 'em.

MP3 The Shins - "We Will Become Silhouettes"
Here's a Shins cover of The Postal Service's "We Will Become Silhouettes" from that band's Such Great Heights single EP. It's a simple acoustic, de-electrofied version of Ben Gibbard/Jimmy Tamborello's lovely ponderings about nuclear paranoia & hiding out in a bomb shelter.

BTW: I got back into town yesterday (4/12) afternoon after an enjoyable weekend in Chitown. I'll have some more on recent events past once I find enough time to write up a proper wrap-up.

get yourself together, shake (x16)!!

MP3 The Rapture - "Out of the Races & onto the Tracks"
MP3 The Rapture - "House of Jealous Lovers" (Maurice Fulton remix)

I'm road tripping down to Chicago today to visit Mouk for the weekend & catch The Rapture/BRMC @ the Vic Theater on Saturday nite. Yes, this same double-bill is playing Mpls on Monday, but unfortunately that show looks to be in the Ascot Room @ the Quest, which is frankly a mediocre venue. Plus, I don't mind at all seeing The Rapture, whose 11/7/03 show @ 1st Ave was my favorite show of last year, more than once. I haven't seen BRMC in concert before, but if I'm impressed w/their live show I'll post a song or two next week. From the eponymous EP, "Out of the Races & onto the Tracks" is one of my top 3 tracks of last year, and this remix of "House of Jealous Lovers" is on disc 1 of the import cd single. Get on your feet, f**kers!!

just the facts, condi...

The Center for American Progress analyzes, comments on & debunks Condoleezza Rice's testimony in front of the 9/11 commission. Can you believe that 8/6/01 briefing memo was actually titled "Bin Laden Determined to Attack Inside the United States"?? Um, hello....can't they just admit that "mistakes" were made? Would it really be the end of the world? It's not even admitting they were wrong exactly. Sheesh.

once you were teathered, now you are free

Joe Mauer's injured knee drew the attention of a team trainer, manager Ron Gardenhire & coach Al Newman. Photo: Jeff Wheeler

The kid was having such a nice start. Twins' rookie catcher & future star Joe Mauer injured his knee in his second big league game, will be out for several weeks, and is going under the knife taboot. In the recent spirit of Passover, I have to say "oy vey..."

that was the river, this is the sea

When I made my big post about RANA last week, I included links to some downloads from RANA's website. One of those tracks was a cover of "We Will Not Be Lovers" by Ireland's rocking-est band of the 80's, The Waterboys. The song that segues into WWNBL is an original RANA tune called "My One Dear Son" that was clearly influenced by these Irish rockers (check the guitar riff during the bridge). In fact, the song was written shortly after the RANA guys attended this Irving Plaza show way back in October 2001.

Here are a couple tracks from the live import double-cd, The Live Adventures of The Waterboys. Caveat: be prepared for some 80's sax action.

MP3 The Waterboys - "Be My Enemy" (live)
MP3 The Waterboys - "This is the Sea" (live)

goin' back to cali

In RANA-related news, the Jersey boys are currently sequencing their next album while preparing to jaunt off to the west coast for some California events (LA & SF folks take notice!). Go check them out & tell them I said hello...

Tuesday 4/13/04
RANA @ The Viper Room
8852 Sunset Blvd - West Hollywood, CA
21+ set @ 8:30pm

Saturday 4/17/04
RANA @ The Elbo Room
647 Valencia St - San Francisco, CA
21+ set @ 10pm advance tix
"Battle of the Bands" show vs Fayvor Love

walk-off closing to opening day

Major League Baseball's opening day ends with a bang for my good ol' Twins. Shannon Stewart's three-run homerun in the bottom of the 11th clinched the Twins' 7-4 victory, while rookie sensation (to-be) Joe Mauer went 2-3 w/two runs scored & two walks in a nifty MLB debut. An extra-innings beginning to what should be an interesting 2004 season.

bk's back w/his brand new invention

Featured tuesday release: Ben Kweller's new LP On My Way.

on the last day of your life, don't forget to die

MP3 Silver Jews - "Send in the Clouds"
MP3 Silver Jews - "Rebel Jew"
MP3 Silver Jews - "Advice to the Graduate"

Tonight (4/5) begins the Jewish festival of Passover - and oy vey, what an inconvenience! I got comped tix for Stererolab/Clearlake on Tuesday nite, which conflicts unfortunately w/my mother's 2nd seder. Urgh. Well, at least I didn't lose any cash-money - but it's still annoying. Stupid jewish holiday...I'm gonna eat a lot of leavened bread in protest.

Also, here are some songs from Steve Malkmus & Dave Berman's Silver Jews.

On a more upbeat note, I took Entertainment Weekly's pop culture of the 90's quiz (from the 4/9/04 issue) on the suggestion of my sis, and I scored 108. Damn, how f**kin' good am I?

fox drops the axe

Fox doesn't waste any time, huh? The critically-acclaimed Wonderfalls, which has only recently been airing Friday (and this past Thursday) nites, has been cancelled by the network. Here's what executive producer Tim Minear had to say about it over at some Buffy site/blog. I hadn't really gotten a chance to watch the show, which my friend Nancy Q has been touting, and I won't get much of a chance (though I do have episodes 1-4 downloaded courtesy bittorrent technology). I just hope Arrested Development isn't next on the chopping block.

In honor of the deceased, here's the theme song I got from iTunes:

MP3 Andy Partridge - "I Wonder Why The Wonderfalls"

son, you've got a full-blown case of what is known as jellybones

MP3 The Unicorns - "Tuff Ghost"
MP3 The Unicorns - "Les Os"

JRDN dropped by the Triple Rock early saturday evening to catch an early triple bill of The Ponys, Beans, & The Unicorns. The opening acts were both solid, though I was dragging a bit during their sets. After a bottled caffiene boost, I was ready for Toronto's Unicorns - who were f**kin' great. Their upbeat indie pop/rock was exactly what I needed to pick up my spirits after a frustrating afternoon. They did a lot of bantering back & forth, making calls w/audience members' cell phones, joking around about seeing Wrath of Khan for the first time the night before etc, but they were amusing & it didn't take away from the show. For the uninitiated, I consider these guys highly recommended - also check out their fantastic 2003 LP Who Will Cut Our Hair When We're Gone?

After the show, we adjurned to the other city, where my team triumphed in TP. During the game, we got a really obscure question about the "Digital Goddess®" of the internet, who apparently is some radio host named Kim Komando. While we eventually won out, we were stumped on that (pie) question - so I'm posting follow-up information for good measure. I'm somewhat in disbelief that this woman actually registered that lame-ass nickname. Oh puleeze, woman...