i know, man, the way that it looks
It's been damn near two weeks since my last post, and I apologize for my extended absence. Last week, I simply had next to nothing to write about. Everybody else had it covered, and I was kinda tapped out. I was planning to write something up after the weekend, but I must have been in my head too much because I never followed through. Mid-week, I ran into some hard drive difficulties, so unfortunately much too much time was spent w/Norton & DiskWarrior. And then I just got lazy. I'll try to make up for it, I guess.
I know this is way belated, but here goes anyway. I considered "live-blogging" last Sunday's Oscars, but decided against it since I really didn't care that much about them. So I tuned in & out during the evening, preferring to watch the lastest episode of HBO's Carnivàle (which is finally getting interesting, btw) than listen to Beyoncé sing song after song. Chris Rock's opening monologue was notably biting (true, Colin Farrell is no replacement for Russell Crowe), and I liked how it took the always pompous & self-important ceremony down a few notches (relax, Spicoli), though it did seem a bit out of place. Rock's movie theater interviews with people who preferred White Chicks and The Chronicles of Riddick to the show's nominees was undoubtably the best part of the whole affair. Of course, the worst was the Academy's unfortunate & borderline-offensive decision to give out awards in the aisles & balconies. What an honor, to be acknowledged for all your hard work while half of the audience has their backs to you. Ugh.
The fairly dull telecast did have some bright moments, with Cate Blanchett looking absolutely stunning acccepting her award for best supporting actress, Prince looking particularly dapper giving out the award for best song (yeah, right), and Kate Winslet being genuinely surprised & elated when Charlie Kaufman and director Michel Gondry deservedly won best original screenplay for Eternal Sunshine. Thank god it won something.
Did anyone else find it odd that going out the the first commercial break, the orchestra played the theme from TNG? And does anybody think that Robin Williams is funny anymore? Isn't he just monumentally annoying?
we are not so complicated
I got this remix off the excellent Sumosonic 35, the latest compilation from Heavy (who also has a blog I just found out about). Munk is comprised of Italian-born Mathias Modica & native German Jonas Imbery, the two dudes behind the Munich-based Gomma label, though they are assisted on this track by James Murphy & Nancy Whang of LCD Soundsystem. I've had the original (and more DFA-sounding) version of this track, from the 2004 Aperitivo LP, since last August when 20 Jazz Funk Greats posted it, but I hadn't given it proper attention until the last month or so. Others are taking notice of "Kick Out The Chairs" as well, with Music For Robots posting it recently and its inclusion in the latest fantastic Pop77 mix. This Who Made Who remix, available on 12" vinyl from Juno, has a decidely more old school funk sound with a thick bass groove, while still featuring Murphy's screechingly nasal vocals & Whang's deadpan mutha-F-bomb dropping.
MOV Munk - "Kick Out The Chairs" video (17.4mb)
I found this video, which is wall-to-wall hipster chicks buggin' out at various locales to the song's original mix, through the essential videos.antville.org.
MP3 The Legends - "Call It Ours"
Here's another lovely bit of fuzzed out pop from The Legends, a nine member outfit from Sweden who are Labrador labelmates with the like-minded (and just as Swedish) Radio Dept. "Call It Ours" is the leadoff track from last year's Up Against The Legends album, and is two and a half minutes of lo-fi nostalgic indie pop bliss. You can stream the video for the song via WMV or RAM. For more on The Legends, read up on the album reviews at Pitchfork, Stylus, Pop Matters & Delusions of Adequacy.
MOV The Legends - "There & Back Again" video (20.6mb)
Here's another video from The Legends for "There & Back Again", also off the Up Against The Legends LP. Hmm...the Legends, the Concretes, the Radio Dept...what are they putting in the Swedish water? Could they breeding lo-fi pop collectives in a bizarre bid for world domination? Possibly.
MP3 Spoon - "I Turn My Camera On"
It's no big surprise that the new Spoon record Gimme Fiction, which I mentioned previously, sprung a leak before its May 10th release on Merge (May 9th outside of North America on Matador). No matter, since I'll still be picking it up the day it comes out, but I don't mind giving it a healthy preview. Also no big surprise, it's pretty great. Spoon albums tend to improve upon repeated listening, and it has been doing so nicely thus far. A couple days ago, I was waiting around while picking my parents up at the airport, and this strut/nod-inducing track had me seriously getting down in my parked car, looking quite the fool I'm sure. Britt Daniel sports a nifty falsetto over a methodical, driving beat that simply puts a grin on my face.
straight cash, homey!
While I'm making up for lost time, I might as well weigh in on a few things that I've neglected of late. First off, the boneheaded trade of star wideout Randy Moss. How dumb can you get? You don't trade arguably the best receiver in football, unless you somehow coax another team into a Herschel Walker-level trade. But make no mistake, Randy Moss is no Herschel Walker, and you just know he's gonna make the Vikes pay for dealing him. Was he a distraction? Sure, but I doubt it was the main cause of the team's inevitable failings. Hey, Terrell Owens was a loose canon too. Who's happier, Super Bowl runner-up Philly or 2-14 Frisco? So long, Randy. I'm sure you'll do Oakland & the Raider nation proud. Holy crap, the Vikings are annoying.
On another Minnesota note, More Cowbell tipped me off to the website re-design for legendary local rock club First Avenue. Spiffy. Nice job, Lev.
Speaking of local shows, I have been blowing off quite a few shows in recent days, and I'm not proud of myself. I did manage to make it out to last week's Kings of Convenience show at the Fine Line, though it sucked that JRDN couldn't join me due to hockey responsibilities. Eirik wasn't feeling well, but the show went on nonetheless. Erlend was in fine form, covering Pavement's "Range Life" & crowd-surfing during the "I'd Rather Dance With You" encore. Erlend & Eirik both also seemed to enjoy the fact that many in the audience knew their native tongue Norwegian, and they had some fun with that. I was unable to snap any pretty pictures, it being a packed house & me being far away up on the balcony & all. Still, it was a good time.
I know it's been blogged about at nauseum, but I thought I'd briefly share my impressions of the new MOV WMV RAM "Love & Death" video from from Canadian rockers The Stills. Hey, anything that stars Metric's Emily Haines will get my attention. I can't help myself. I cannot stop pondering why she has staplers humping each other. Or am I just reading too much into that? C'mon, look how she licks that envelope. I dunno, but it's damn sexy when she pushes those two office chairs together. Weird, no?
While I'm on the subject of the ladies of Broken Social Scene, over the weekend Chromewaves (via For the 'records') pointed out the re-design over at Feist's official website. The silhouetted "Almost Crimes" video rules.
Using a video-related segueway, Ending East (scroll down to 2/25/05) found the advance info on the upcoming Criterion dvd set for The Life Aquatic w/Steve Zissou. Despite my somewhat lukewarm feelings about the film, I'm a huge Wes Anderson - so I'll probably be picking it up. Ending East also points to the MOV teaser trailer (15.7mb) for director Richard Linklater's animated adaptation of Philip K. Dick's A Scanner Darkly. I've started re-reading the book again in anticipation of the film's release later this year.
ETA (3/5/05): Yahoo has the ASD teaser as well (via 15 Minutes To Live):
MOV A Scanner Darkly - teaser trailer (hi-res) @ Yahoo! (10.8mb)
tonite we celebrate the ninja new year
I hearty welcome back for Sean from Said The Gramophone. We missed you dearly pal, though Jordan has done an admirable job filling in.
And my congrats to the dudes from The Lonely Island, who just can't seem to get their Channel 101 juggernaut The 'Bu cancelled, despite a fine (lack of?) effort this month. Good luck on that pilot presentation, guys!
BTW: I also picked up the new dvd for I ♥ Huckabees last weekend. I think I like it a lot more after seeing it again, and I suspect it does well upon repeated viewings. I'm still mulling it over. More on that later, perhaps.