Thursday, April 27, 2006

God bless student newspaper A&E sections

China Bialos (I never heard of her either), a University of Puget Sound student newspaper writer (and self-admitted commie), recently published this article re: SPIN's downfall and probably collects more (and better) information into one article than Gawker did. Now if she had only sourced better.

You could only do that in a college paper... in the Pacific Northwest otherwise known as Southern Canada.

Oh... wait... yeah... yeah, there it goes

The apocalypse has finally come.

\m/ >< \m/

^Totally what I did when I got this press release in my inbox today:


April 25, 2006

For Immediate Release


Relapse Records is proud to announce the signing of one of rock's most enigmatic duos JUCIFER.

“We are really looking forward to working with everyone at Relapse. It feels like everyone there is in it for the right reason - loving the hell out of music.” comments JUCIFER frontwoman Amber Valentine. She continues; “It’s cool to share a label with some bands we’ve become friends with over the years (like High on Fire, Dysrhythmia, Rwake, Mastodon, Buried Inside) and so many others we’re looking forward to meeting and touring with.”

JUCIFER’s forthcoming Relapse debut, At the Hands Of Our Intercessors, features Valentine’s trademark sultry vocals layered over colossal guitars and drums (courtesy of Edward Livengood). At the Hands Of our Intercessors will see an early Fall release via Relapse Records. Valentine explains, “We are ready! It’s been a long wait for us to get our new record out, but worth it. We’ve whipped out a few of the songs on tour already, and can’t wait to play more!”

Expect to see the nomadic duo showcasing those new songs across the United States throughout the summer.

Stay tuned to for forthcoming JUCIFER news / album release / tour information.

“Music thrives on contrast, and Jucifer -- a duo, convenient for duality -- have got it. Cute girl; grungy guy. Melody; noise. Mystery; craft. Helpless little voice; enormous waves of guitar and drums. Valentine is a guitarist with a vision. his sound projects personality” – LA Weekly

“Drummer Ed Livengood, playing like a Muppet on crank, continually draws attention as he hammers his drum kit like a flailing octopus with a flip-top head. they produce a barrage of sweltering, sludgy rock in the tradition passed from Black Sabbath to the Melvins to Kyuss. Jucifer is monolithic, from its stage packed with amps to its psychedelic snarl.” – Cleveland Scene

'I was saying Boo-urns!'

God bless The Onion A.V. Club, they're the only consistent, non-blog publication that can do stuff like this and do it well.

In other Simpsonly news: There's an A.V. Club interview with Matt "I Still Can't Believe I'm A Republican" Groening here and all the details regarding the new Simpsons movie (yes, its finally getting released!) here

Monday, April 24, 2006

Greatest. Board Game. Ever.


  • The recent entries of the Tallahassee Democrat's Gerald Ensley and Mark Hinson are really something. Check them out!

  • Scott, I apologize for calling your Joggers post joyless. Apparently, I had no idea what I was talking about. THIS is joyless... faceless... soulless, even.

  • Can someone please explain to me how Myrtle Beach, South Carolina gets so many shows? And why they have a House of Blues?

  • The most fun-looking concert listing ever in ATL land: Sat 06 NEXUS LIVE: punk&krunk show: norfup x alex trackstar x the
    remnant x remember golieth all ages 7 PM / $6

  • Randomly overheard at the Hip-Hop Summit Action Network's "Get Your Money Right" Seminar (via Jaded Insider): "So many people have money but don’t have no damn sense," Liles told the crowd. "You can be the statistic or the success story." -- "You don’t want to be surrounding yourself with, and pardon my expression, some weak-ass niggas," Nas added. In related news, Wu-Tang Financial has printed up its own t-shirts. Diversify yo bondz, nigga.
  • Sunday, April 23, 2006

    Sundays in the South mean...

  • The Chain of Parks Art Festival, one of the biggest in the Southeast. Some wonderful artists displayed their wares.

  • Columns like Gerald Ensley's "Fly your Confederate flag; just don't ask me to salute it" is inspiring on days like this. Mark Hinson's entry in "For Amusement Purposes Only" this week is heartwarming and funny. I love this town.

  • Time to give props to Scott. This story is well-written, if elongated, and I think a bigger point is overlooked (or maybe, since the point is much more serious, underlooked). These extreme Islamic extremist terrorists hate anyone who isn't them, even Danes who draw some stupid cartoons. Liberals who criticize American because we have "fascist leaders" and "only have the freedom between Coke and Pepsi" and all this bullshit are more full of shit than our commander in chief, and that's saying something. Not to imply he speaks for all liberals or the entire far-left, but David Cross once said "if the terrorists really hated freedom then the Netherlands would be fuckin' DUST, man." Now that possibility is closer than ever. To reluctantly borrow from Bush, the terrorists kind of do "hate freedom" or, really, anyone who isn't them or doesn't conform strictly to their standards of living. In that way, they are no better than Nazis or the Klu Klux Klan.
  • Prominent figures and District 1 Commissioner opponents size-up the competition - News

    Prominent figures and District 1 Commissioner opponents size-up the competition - News

    Ok so check this.

    Not my usual fare, but I figure this is something worth talking about. In the Tallahassee black community right now, or perhaps more accurately the county's first District, a great schism is about to happen. Here we have a longtime incumbent, Bill Proctor, versus a young buck, lifelong Tallahassee resident Ramon Alexander. Alexander is currently still serving out his lame duck presidency as FAMU Student Body President. Competition in a county district is not new, but district one has been dominated by Proctor for over a decade now, and seemingly he's impossible to unseat, his support is so rock solid.

    However, Proctor's been making some (for the lack of a better term) "bitch moves." He voted for the coal plant in the area and his inconsistent, even erratic, part-time responsibilities at FAMU have been lacking. In my two years at FAMU, I've seen him on campus three times... and I'm a reporter. I get around campus. Proctor is not on campus as much as he probably should be. And don't get me started on the Fallschase fiasco...

    I can tell you that most FAMU students I know respect the guy, but don't particularly enjoy his company. His classes, however, are still sought after. So maybe his constituents, the victims of his unabashed demagoguery, are sort of split on him. Maybe Alexander thinks he can pick up the difference and register a bunch of FAMU students for the express purpose of voting for him. He certainly has a spotless, if perhaps unexceptional, track record of leadership. I've met both men, and Alexander is definitely less a of a jerk, so maybe in a perfect world the young, ex-FAMU SB President, like Andrew Gillum some years ago, would get elected.

    However, this is not a perfect world, town or black community. You have to consider the makeup of district one: a) black and b) old. Families, yes; working-to-middle class, yes; seniors, not necessarily; but traditional definitely. These people will have their hooks in Proctor (which benefits him, because they WILL re-elect him, but not before Alexander gives him a run for his money) until he decides to run for Al Lawson's seat in the State Senate, which he could probably win when the time comes.

    Thursday, April 20, 2006

    UPDATE: This is why...

    ...You shouldn't speak too soon.

    Chuck Eddy is gone. That's confirmed. Christgau? Maybe not so much. One can hope VV Media has more sense than to fire one of the greatest rock critics of all - fucking - time.

    Readers: Your mission.

    Ok, I've been wasting my time with this the past couple of days:

    Think of the most absurd, gay, immature, vain myspace profile you can think of. Now think of a really hot and fuckable (but not "cute" or "attractive") chick. Now think of a really fucking lame screen name. Now think of the ugliest, most tacky website you've ever seen.

    You got those four in your head?

    Now plug those in after

    What do you get?

    This freakshow:

    lambgurl -- uhhhh... what the fuck?
    totallysylvia -- peep the cursor
    niggasandbitches -- not what you think!
    UPDATE: biggnutsack -- wtf? thanks Carnell!

    ...and so on. Leave comments with links of the best (worst) myspace profiles. It's absolutely hilarious and infuriating at the same time to try and find them. Go! Now! I want to see results!


    It's no secret. For a minute now, NYT culture/arts writers have been biting from the FADER. I see you Lola Ogunnaike! Bring your cute ass back to FAMU, girl, we miss you!

    It's culminated into this.

    It's all good, though. Kelefa Sanneh is a good writer, and part of being a good writer is drawing from the right springs. But some of his articles and story ideas have been blatant P4K/FADER rips.

    P.S.: This video ^ has hypnotized me.
    P.P.S.: Speaking of hot chicks, Lindsay Lohan got owned on Saturday Night Live. I can't wait for Tom Hanks/Chili Peppers next month, can you?

    Wednesday, April 19, 2006

    Tonight is the night!

    Tonight is the night that Ace Young will be eliminated from American Idol.

    Oh joy!

    EDIT (Thursday, April 20, 2006 -- 11:23 A.M.): Told you so.

    Tuesday, April 18, 2006

    This is why...

    ...I boycotted the Village Voice last month.

    The Voice is so dead to me.

    More proof that the Secret Machines, indeed, rule

    From Brooklyn Vegan:

    EC: The last time I saw you play was at Webster Hall in New York last December and who do I see but David Bowie sitting in the rafters with a shit grin on his face. I read an article that says your fans also include Kevin Shields of My Bloody Valentine and Jason Pierce of Spiritualized. What does having fans like this do to a bands confidence?

    BC: It is really good. I mean you meet these people and its like they’re just musicians like ourselves which is cool. It is nice to chat with them. But at the same time it is kind of dangerous because you don’t want to be the band who all the old guys like. I think these people obviously have great taste. It is really cool touching those people but I would rather touch the kid in the middle of Nebraska. It is more interesting for me to excite them.

    See that? See what happened there? This pompous, name-dropping, snyde, smug, NYC, elitist rock critic/blogger asked this uber-hip question... and what happened? Benjamin Curtis, the Secret Machines' guitarist and co-lead vocalist, said: "I would rather touch the kid in the middle of Nebraska." This coming from a man who is from Dallas, Texas: THE SOUTH. He gives a shit about reaching out to common people through uncommon music, not just saying "yeah, I was at this event. It was awesome. I'm so cool."

    It just goes to show you that even elitist, big city assholes get trumped once in a while. Exhibit B:

    EC: You played in Tripping Daisy with Tim DeLaughter right?

    BC: Yes... (sighing)

    EC: Were you ever close to picking up a robe and joining the (Polyphonic) Spree?

    BC: You know he talked to me about it before they got started. He is a really charismatic character. It is kind of his show when he works. What I was kind of interested doing at the time, well my emotional palette was a little different.

    EC: I could understand that. When I first saw them perform at Coachella a few years back DeLaughter came out with the band and asked the crowd, "Isn’t the sun beautiful?" It was all a bit surreal.

    BC: In my opinion the occasional dark cloud will make you appreciate the sunshine a bit more.

    Jaded music lifestyle douchebag, meet the untainted force of rock 'n' roll! KA-POW!

    In case you didn't already know...

    The local band listings (a precursor to the upcoming online entertainment publication coming this fall) were posted some time ago.

    See them here.


    The following amazing releases came out this week:

  • AFX - Chosen Lords

  • Drive-By Truckers - A Blessing and A Curse

  • Adrian Belew - Side Three (featuring Les Claypool and Danny Carey!)

  • Killing Joke - Hosannas from the Basement of Hell

  • The Red Krayola - Introduction

    Holy shit I think I just came. From my listening, Drive By Truckers and Aphex Twin are likely candidates in my stereo for some of the best records of '06.

    Oh and not to mention, the soon-to-be-closed-forever goth/shoegaze label Projekt released their final compilation disc today. Throw 'em a little money while you can, would ya?

    Segueing from "holy crap" to "holy shit!" news: Neil Young wants to impeach Bush and he's displaying this sentiment... in song! "Let's Impeach the President" is to be played for his label tomorrow for inclusion on his second album in as many years, "Living with War."

    "I think it is a metal version of Phil Ochs and Bob Dylan," Young said on his website. "Metal folk protest?"

    I know he lives in America now (according to the extremely well-done Rolling Stone peice done on him last year, he lives in rural northern California), but he's from Cananda. Somehow, his opinion on the American political landscape holds less water than I'd actually like it to-- lesser than, say, Bruce Springsteen or Bob Dylan. I'm not sayin', I'm just sayin'

    Oh and also: Michael Jackson is back to work on music in Bahrain. No biggie.
  • Monday, April 17, 2006

    Yes guitarist Steve Howe looks like the Cryptkeeper

    In other prog news...

    Tool is soon to tour North America, and they're playing nowhere close to me. And they're also showing their faces in press photos now. Douchebags.


    You are not ready for this much metal. I want to see this documentary SO BAD. It comes out May 23 on DVD, because Miracle sure as hell won't get it. Hell, I'm still waiting for Wordplay... you motherfuckers.

    ANYWAY, read some reviews of the metal doc here.

    Sunday, April 16, 2006

    'I need it in my life!/I want it in my life!'

    New FADERs coming soon. Last time this year, the FADER's photo issue was Miles Davis, featuring photos by Anton Corbijn. This year its Nina Simone.

    In related news: Mary J. Blige, the Queen of Hip-Hop Soul, has been cast to play Ms. Simone in a biopic. Fuck yes.

    Friday, April 14, 2006

    News tidbits

  • From Wednesday's Tallahassee Democrat, Tallahassee may finally get its Performing Arts Center. In related links, check here and here.

  • From NPR, Netflix is suing Blockbuster for stealing their idea of online DVD/game rental, essentially. Guess whose side I'm on.

  • Four Tet is soon to release his disc in another long-overdue entry of the DJ Kicks series. Finally!

  • Tallahassee-born record label Soft Abuse has released an a few-and-far-in-between update on their happenings.

  • Keepin' it street, The Game isn't going to perform in North Carolina anytime soon. Kinda like Ozzy with Texas or Pearl Jam with Denmark.

  • These shows will only end in tears.
  • Thursday, April 13, 2006

    Is hip hop dead?

    I had an op-ed in the Famuan published yesterday asking this question.

    Check it.

    Wednesday, April 12, 2006

    Your 'oh snap!' of the day is brought to you by...

    In other racially-charged news...

    The real hip hop is... over here; D.I.Y. rock 'n' roll is... over there!

    Ah, show hopping. You know you really can't do this in a big, hip, indie rock metropolis like NYC or Chicago. Certainly not in L.A., Atlanta or Miami. Venues have to be close enough together, you have to have enough money (or know enough people well enough) and you have to have time. In big cities, shows start late and end early. Everything's rushed. Most concerts in big cities end before midnight. There's no real downtime between bands to where one can go outside and have a smoke or get some air. And re-entry? FORGET ABOUT IT.

    That's why I like Tallahassee and cool towns like it: Asheville, Gainesville and even Austin fits in that outside of SXSW. The cool, venue-filled, hip part of town is very clustered, so you don't have to worry.

    Hence, KRS One last night. He was very good live. The opening act, who I've seen a million times, put on their second-best-ever show I've seen from them. They just moved themselves to the A and they've definitely tuned up their live performance chops. Hell, they had to. THEY WERE OPENING FOR KRS-ONE.

    So it was a good show. KRS had a good set. It was marred by technical problems, but it was still a good set. I went in and out of the B dub' the whole night. It was the first time I could excersize my post-21 right to gain re-entry into the bar on the night of a big show. I didn't even know there was a Saints show that night.

    So I switched between some fucked-up, diverse D.I.Y. bill with these guys (who I heard one and a half songs of, but I really liked), these guys (who are just local scene garbage), this dude (...I dunno) and The Pharmacy who I didn't get to see, but seem really weird and cool. I would check them out.

    It got me thinking about how inherently intimate all indie/D.I.Y. shows are. Hell, even your typical arena rock show is more intimate than a medium-sized hip hop show. Think of this: KRS One is full of himself. Of course he is. He's a rapper and he's supposed to do that. You'd think there'd be intimacy in the call-and-reponse shit that he does with a hundred-plus crowd, packed into a small club, but they do the same chants over and over again and you can't hear a fucking word any of them are saying.

    The indie/D.I.Y. shows, as shitty as the crowds are (in contrast, the KRS crowd was awesome and very balanced as far as race and, seemingly, musical background), have a great, fun, unpretentious atmosphere. The KRS One show, however, had breakdancers. WHY THE FUCK CAN'T WE JUST COMBINE THESE TWO SHOWS, DAMMIT?!

    Anyway, great night. Here's to many more.

    Tuesday, April 11, 2006

    Holy music news/releases, Batman!

    Check out the music news/releases today. Fucking huge:

  • First off, Proof died. This really sucks. He was a really great rapper.

  • Details on Spoon's new projects, including a brand new full length next year.

  • A Rolling Stones concert you may have heard about somewhere.

  • A new Bright Eyes release AND a new Dashboard Confessional release? Emo-tastic! Been a while, huh, guys?

  • Talk about a while! Producer extraordinaire T Bone Burnett is finally, after 14 years, releasing new material.

  • Thom Yorke said this to NME: "The fact that poor Arctic Monkeys are getting so much attention is purely based on the fact that the mainstream music business is such a bunch of fucking retards as far as I'm concerned." FUCK YAH!

  • All these records came out today, including: Pretty Girls Make Graves, Calexico, Field Music, Built to Spill and the FADER-approved Tom Ze. Get your download on, homie, we major.
  • Saturday, April 08, 2006

    Fuck music publicists

    No, seriously...

    From beyond the grave, Johnny Cash hates you all, you scum-eating publicist bastards.

    Friday, April 07, 2006

    'I got my diploma from a school called Rickards/Full of teenage mothers and drug dealin' niggas'

    Top 5 Records of the '06 First Quarter


  • Mogwai - Mr. Beast -- You know its funny... If I had to name a number one, it'd be this. That's why I list it first. Funny huh? ANYWAY, overall, critics aren't really feeling this quite like I am, but I honestly think this is some of Mogwai's best work to date. It's cohesive, it's loud, sometimes for loud's sake (which one can only expect from Mogwai) and intimidating, it's warm, soft and inviting and its everything a Mogwai fan wants, really. Only flaw: "I Chose Horses" should be a tad longer as a final outro and "We're No Here" seems superfluous as an extra track. Making it a hidden track would've been way, way cooler. Plus it would've been a nice surprise for true Mogwai fans who listen to the CD in full. Where Sigur Ros kind of got less awesome last year with "Takk..."-- Mogwai pleasantly surprised me with "Mr. Beast." Great. Just great.

  • Boris - Pink -- Yeah, so it's been a while. I was wondering when the ADD gaze of metal-curious hipsters would stumble upon Boris. Fuck The Sword, whom are probably just indie kids in jean jackets AND tight jeans WITH metal patches sewn on, amps turned to 11. High on Fire aren't even that good, even if Steve Albini did produce them. Boris is the shit. "Pink" is some of the best stoner/doom/sludge shit I have ever heard.

  • Ahleuchatistas - What You Will -- What a find. A former Tallahasseean guitarist, Shane Perlowin (ex-Velvet Pelvis), goes to TCC, gets sick of the town's football obsession (I can't blame him) a decides to do music in a little North Carolina hippie town called Asheville. He meets two other math-rock/jazz/porg nerds and *poof*, Ahleuchatistas is born. If you're at a loss of how to pronounce that name, just think of the Bird song "Ah-Leu-Cha," an upbeat bop ditty that they noticeably pull from (as well as most fast off-time jazz like Brubeck, Coleman, etc.), combine with the Spanish suffix of "Zapatistas" (meaning, I guess, "dedicated believe and/or soldier of") and there you have it. "What You Will" in another fine, and this time more focused, release for the power trio. V89 is playin' it like it's dat hotness.

  • Anathallo - Floating World -- This band is amazing like you have no idea. Imagine Sufjan Stevens arranging and singing for a Sigur Ros (prettyness, heavy drums and guitar sound) or Godspeed You! Black Emperor (darkness, lo-fi aesthetic and large amount of sound/musicians) kind of band. That's basically Anathallo in a large nutshell. Last time I saw them live (about three years ago, maybe more) they had at least nine or ten members on one small stage. On record, they sound way cleaner. Their passion is lost a little bit, but its almost completely original, and definitely intense, music. Absolutely unique and wonderful.

  • The National - Alligator (Expanded) -- Sure, it technically came out last year, but I actually bought it this year because I'm lazy. And it came with an extra CD and all that lovely crap. And a slipcase! I just love slipcases! Seriously, get this record. The National remind me of a Midwestern, American Music Club-type Joy Division band that actually rock... and roll, too!

    XXL recently conducted a two-part interview with probably the greatest RBG (which stands for "revolutionary but gangsta," in case you didn't know) MC in hip hop today, Immortal Technique.

    He just put out a scathing new mixtape joint, "Impeach the President" (listen to it here). That's awesome. Even better? DEAD PREZ IS ON THE TRACK WITH HIM!

    This shit is the single of the year! No doubt about it.

    Thursday, April 06, 2006

    The best album of 2006

    Everyday I'm hustlin'

    Top 5 Movies of the '06 First Quarter


    5. "Wordplay" -- Here's the FADER's take on this documentary about nerdy crossword puzzle culture, since theirs might be better than mine (since I haven't actually seen it in full yet): "We got our NPR on with Wordplay, a documentary about the country's best crossword players, centered around New York Times Crosswords Puzzle Editor Will Shortz and his annual crossword competition in Stamford, Connecticut. The Spellbound comparisons are both expected and warranted, but the film is jammed with the nerd humor we're convinced is the future of funny. Avid crosswordian Jon Stewart fucking murderalizes it during his guest segment, but other celebrity experts like the Indigo Girls and President William Jefferson Clinton offer little insight. Similes like 'solving problems is like solving the crossword puzzle' are pretty whatever, but baton twirling competitor Ellen Ripstein could supplant Nupur Lala as our top real world dork fixation."

    4. "Inside Man" -- This is making some money (52.5 million in two weeks!) and its the first movie in a while that deserves to make that kind of money. It even beat ATL (the overhyped lifestyle movie that it is). "Inside Man" is Spike Lee's signature filmmaking at his most cleaned up: In a cream-colored suit (like Denzel in the movie) and coiffed. But no worries, Lee definitely hasn't lost his signature touch. He's not "going mainstream" or "selling out" just because this is his big payday. He's going to need the money for his Katrina documentary in August/September. This movie is ten times more subversive to the mind's of its middle American viewers than the schlocky-but-well-acted "V For Vendetta." "Inside Man" is mainstream cinema like it should be.

    3. "Neil Young: Heart of Gold" -- Recently, Martin Scorsese swore off Hollywood films. He said he wants to focus on documentaries. Dubious, but maybe he thinks that's his way of winning an Oscar (finally) Jonathan Demme needs to do the same thing with concert films. It's not like he wouldn't make money at it, they're so hot right now. Dude's only done a handful (you know about "Stop Making Sense", "Storefront Hitchcock" maybe not so much) and has worked with Neil Young before. "Heart of Gold" is justification for Demme doing exclusively concert films-- its a touching, warm picture of not just Young's music, but his life.

    2. "Why We Fight" I've posted on this before, so I'll just add this: It's the first-ever documentary on the military-industrial complex, so you can get your Marx on. Plus, in a possible attempt at (wait for it) post-Marxism, "Why We Fight" helps redefine the "military-industrial" complex as a trifectica: "military-industrial-political." Because the movie borrows its title from a series of what are ostensibly pro-American, WWII propaganda films, supposes a "military-industrial-political-entertainment" complex. Scary.

    1. "Dave Chappelle's Block Party" -- I defy you not to feel joy while watching this movie. I watched it in a completely vacant theater, but with a sold out one I bet it's, like, ten times better.

    It's strange how four of these five movies are non-fiction/documentary films-- two are even concert films. It seems like just about everything else I watch as far as Hollywood, or even arthouse/Cannes/Sundance/Miracle 5 fare, either patronizes or depresses me. These three movies either thrill your senses or ignite your intellect and imagination. Those are the kinds of movies for which I will gladly shell out $6 bucks.

    Wednesday, April 05, 2006

    An open letter to the Orlando Weekly's columnist Jason Ferguson

    Mr. Ferguson,

    I was sifting through some of Mr. Ferguson's older columns ("oldER" not "old," per say) because one of my best friends, who grew up in the Orlando area, was praising one particular column which I will hereon refer to as "Post-1990 music sucks."

    That statement, though you did not make it directly but summarizes your opinion in the column I refer to, is categorically inaccurate. I'd even go as far to say as its flat-out wrong. Barring M.I.A. from that blanket statement (of which, I make many myself; and I also enjoyed "Arular") is no saving grace. If we can frame this letter into what is essentially American pop music-- mass consumed or not (I speak academically here)-- Sigur Ros first comes to mind as falling into the category of "sound[ing] out of place in 1990," because it would pre-date My Bloody Valentine ("Loveless" post-dated 1990 also) and even some of the Cocteau Twins' best work. Its only comparison in '90, and now in '06, is shoegaze music, or "Pink Floyd turned blue," to quote Spin Magazine.

    I can give you a laundry list of music that would've sounded downright freakish in 1990: Aphex Twin, Squarepusher, Boards of Canada, anything produced by Timbaland/Missy Elliott (maybe less so, due to '80s electro), Daft Punk, Basement Jaxx and so on and so on. Take just about any crunk, screw or snap hip hop song and put that in '90. People would freak out. Pretty much any post-New Order or post-Chemical Brothers electronic music would at least sound pretty out of place in '90. IDM like I mentioned previously would DEFINITELY sound out of place. "Kid A," on that note (a record that, by the time this decade ends by the way, will probably be considered as the finest music representing the '00s), would definitely sound out of place, even if it does essentially rip off Aphex Twin and Kraftwerk.

    Basically, hip hop and electronic music are pretty much the only pop music genres that show demonstrable, sometimes drastic and (even rarer so) revolutionary evolutions in sonic originality in your frame of "1990 on."

    Radiohead and much of the hip hop I named, of course, are rooted in pre-'90 music, yes. But to say that nothing came out in 2005 (even thought you wrote "2006," you probably meant 2005, being that '06 was only 19 days old upon your column's publication) that would sounded out of place in 1990 is fucking DUBIOUS. In fact, it might even show just how narrow-minded your view of music is. Now, I've read you before. I know this isn't true. Which is why your lack of musical perspective surprised me so much.

    I'd like to engage in debate/discussion with you so you can explain or even recalibrate your position. I'm sure you're a busy man, but holla back, young'un.

    konflict of interest

    'Too soon' much?

    "Hey, Maury McJewbag!"

    "Yeah, Money McGee?"

    "You know, we're biding our time on this 9/11 thing and all, and I know that's P.C. -- and I know they say Hollywood is out of touch with America..."


    "I think we should really give them more ammunition against us."

    "Well... We could do another big-budget, Holocaust movie martyring my people to resurrect the whole 'Jews run Hollywood' thing."

    "No, no, that's no good, because gentiles do, too."

    "Yeah, yeah. Right, right..."

    (silence, both are in thought)

    "I know! Let's just do it?"

    "What do you mean, Mr. McGee?"

    "Let's make a 9/11 movie!"

    "That's so crazy it just might work! Hell, Stone has been on our ass about it since it happened! You gentiles are so crafty..."

    (...And scene)

    The influence of Tag Team's 'Whoomp! There It Is' on hip hop today is drastically underrated

    Top 5 Performances of the '06 First Quarter

    5. Kanye West, Jamie Foxx and the FAMU Marching 100 - 'Late Registration Medley' at the Grammys on 2/18/06 -- Pretty much everything I thought it would be. Thank God for YouTube so I can watch this over and over. The Marching 100 really left it all out on the stage, dancing and performing so energetically for such a short time. The Broke Phi Broke dancers were amazing, too. Besides a drawn out spoken intro and a superfluous "Touch the Sky"/Curtis Mayfeild-sampled horn part, the performance was excellent.

    4. The Hold Steady - Beta Bar performance on 2/10/06 -- To be honest, this was a little bit of a disappointment. Frontman and Irish Catholic drunk/beat poet/gangsta rapper Craig Finn (who, lyrically, resembles a storytelling meld between Slick Rick and Bruce Springsteen) purposefully went off his lyrical cadence and rhythm that so permeated "Seperation Sunday" and made it such an amazing record. I was expecting this to be a "holy shit" performance, but it was just "very, very good." Not anything to complain about, though. All in all, maybe they're more of a studio band.

    3. Katharine McPhee - Come Rain or Come Shine (Ella Fitzgerald cover) on American Idol, 3/23/06 -- If you didn't actually see it, watch it. It's one of the best, most effortless "American Idol" performances I've ever seen. If I were Simon Cowell I'd ask her: "Did you sing that to someone?" She'd say "yes," because she did. "If you sang to someone every week, you'd have this competition locked up. That was amazing." Totally confident, totally effortless, totally sexy. In a perfect world, she'd win this season of "American Idol."

    2. Kaki King - Club Downunder performance on 2/2/06 -- There are solo guitar performers, and then there are virtuosos. And then there are CUTE AS HELL guitar virtuosos. Kaki King (beautiful hi-res pic) is just that. Unless you caught John Fahey or Leo Kottke when they were alive and touring, you've never seen anyone (much less a woman) play guitar like this.

    1. Wilco - The Moon performance on 3/14/06 -- For once in my life, I am speechless in regards to Wilco. Total no brainer here.

    Tuesday, April 04, 2006

    It's already that time...

    Time to proclaim what you liked most from the first couple months of the year. Judging what you like most as the year goes is the good way to get a solid long list, shortened from what could be a laundry list of records/songs/etc., going into the end of a year, where your top 10/five/25 list determines your manhood, er... personhood, in the music world.

    I'm going to post one top five a day this week. First up:

    Top 5 Music Writings of the '06 First Quarter

    5. "Status Ain't Hood" by Tom Breihan - "Three 6 Mafia: Oscar Winners." -- A lot of people had a lot of shock and awe to get across after this WTF Oscar moment. Some people didn't even seem to care about that other upset in light of the face that three nigorant motherfuckers from Memphis won an Academy Award. Breihan, in a strange moment of actual journalistic savoir faire, follows up on the story. Crazy.

    4. The FADER's piece (finally) on Against Me! -- This peice, either done by Nick Barat or Will Welch (both of whom are great, but I prefer Mr. Welch) was a perfect, apt and even poigant description of Against Me!'s essence. The writer even compares Against Me!'s "surging ... populist" attitude to Creedence Clearwater Revival and John Mellencamp. Straight hustlin' out of Gainesville, Florida, son.

    3. The New York Times' Kelefah Sanneh - "Dancehall With a Different Accent" -- Finally, finally, finally! Someone with a megaphone and nice, tall, clean soapbox puts Matisyahu in his place. The fucking kike. He's such a fake, insincere act. If he's not completely doing his bad, imitation, rip-off dancehall for the money, then he's just an idiot parallel to the likes of Fred Durst who mindlessly Crow Jim co-opt more of black culture. You know (well, I know) his audience is 98 percent Abercrombie white preppy stoners. "Play that Marley, dude whooooooooooooooo!" Faggots.

    2. "Status Ain't Hood" by Tom Breihan - "The Grammy Awards: A Running Diary" -- Breihan could do these for a living, these awards shows run downs. Some of my favorite excerpts: "8:09: Stevie Wonder makes goony jokes about how Alicia Keys looks good. But he can't see! Because he's blind." Also: "John Legend reminds me of WWE Monday Night Raw announcer Coach." This one's a scorcher: "8:30: In either a technical fuckup or a bold and experimental move, Sugarland allow "Something More" to be interrupted by ambient walkie-talkie noises."

    Also: "9:32: Teri Hatcher says that she feels like she's been blessed. Michael Buble says that Teri Hatcher is the sexiest critic he's ever met. Clearly, Michael Buble has never met me." And possibly the funniest: "10:03: I should go back and listen to the original again, but I don't remember a part in 'Dance to the Music' where raps horrendously while dancing like a spaz." In a reference to the FAMU Marching 100: "10:40: Kanye and Jamie Foxx are dressed as dueling marching bandleaders. This may be a bad idea ... 10:42: Nevermind, it's awesome."

    And the most bizarre comment: "11:06: John Legend shocks absolutely no one by winning the Best New Artist award. He thanks Man Man? And Devo? John Legend is weird!" Apparently, "Devo" was Devo Springsteen, a producer in G.O.O.D. Music.

    1. Pitchfork Media's Chris Dahlen - Kind of Like Spitting - "Learn: The Songs of Phil Ochs" review -- Usually, I ignore what many P4K writers have to say, especially on the website itself, and even moreso on their cringe-inducing, embarassing, scatterbrained blogs.

    Dahlen, I think, is one of them. He wrote the infamous T.Mo goose egg review of "Travistan," which was embarassing to not only other rock critics or P4K's other writers, but any true fan of music that has a brain in their head and doesn't mindlessly agree with everything P4K, or any other music publication that publishes opinion, says. Thankfully, with this review, Dahlen may have seen the light of clarity a little bit, even if he probably couldn't write out the definition of "brevity" in less than 500 words to save his life.

    And don't get it twisted, Dahlen doesn't even fucking review the album. Hardly anyone at P4K does that-- no, no. He lengthily (and I mean LENGTHILY, but this time righteously) pontificates on how our generation "can't cough up a great protest singer today." I've been wanting a rock critic to bring this up for a long time. "He criticizes the listener for non-particiation," he says. "For supporting the war but dodging the draft, for skipping out on the riots at the '68 convention, for not stopping a rape or helping the poor. Ochs turned his angriest words on the liberals who talked big and did nothing." Ochs did this in the late '60s, but it applies now, Dahlen seems to say.

    "Today we lack the literacy, the specificity and the argument of a Phil Ochs song because we don't participate, and we have nothing at stake." Damn right. Only now is more music, popular and underground, starting to get expressly, and I can only hope virulently, political. In my opinion, in times of strife like now, all music is ultimately politically and socially conscious even when they don't take a stance. Its easy to seperate the wheat from the chaff of conscious citizenry in times like today.

    "Bring back the draft," Dahlen proposes. That'll get 'em off their ass, he seems to say. I agree. That's the only way the protesting, anti-war, activist (or at least awarist) base in this country will ever actually DO ANYTHING. "We won't wag a finger at the TV [with a draft]; we'll march in the streets," he says. I couldn't agree more, I tell ya.

    Dahlen ends with a hopefuly statement: "Here's hoping the next Phil Ochs shows up to call 'bullshit' on us all." Maybe it takes a rock critic to call bullshit on us first.

    I just want your extra time and your...

    Kiss (off to "American Idol").

    Check this shit out from

    Pop superstar Prince will reportedly appear on American Idol to both coach contestants and perform on the hit TV series in a bid to maintain high album sales. The notoriously shy star has just released his latest LP, '3121,' which debuted at the top of the U.S. Billboard album chart. According to, executives from Prince's record company convinced him to appear on the show to keep the album at the top of the charts, after noting a huge spike in album sales when Barry Manilow appeared on the program earlier this year. According to one source, 'It wasn't easy though because Prince apparently hates the show and has never even watched it.'

    If this happens, it will be BAR NONE the greatest "American Idol" episode ever.

    "What's that Prince?" (Prince inaudibly whispers in Ryan Seacrest's ear) "Prince says he thinks Ace Young has a vagina."

    Saturday, April 01, 2006

    What you know about a big DVD pile, son? (Part Deux)

  • "Krush Groove" -- I haven't had this much fun watching a movie, much less one purely based on hip-hop aesthetic, since... ever. If you ignore the mostly corny lines and stiff acting, this movie is one hell of a good time. "Krush Groove" is, of course, at its best when there are musical performances going on from random stars that pop up out of nowhere. Kind of like "School Daze" but not nearly as well written or acted.

    Actually, this movie's director (Michael Schultz) also directed the legend Berry Gordy's "Last Dragon" movie, a kung-fu/chop socky/blaxploitation film that's just dying to get remade. I'm looking at you, Hype Williams.

  • "No Direction Home: Bob Dylan" -- If you're lukewarm on, curious about or (God forbid) hating on Robert Zimmerman, see this documentary about the Life and Times of Bob Dylan. It will move you and then it will convert you. After this, listen to "Bringing It All Back Home." This documentary made me rediscover Dylan. It was made by some guy called Scorsese whose never won an Oscar of his own.

    The scene where Allen Ginsberg dryly, yet poigantly, describes his reaction to the first time he heard "The Times They Are A-Changin'" was the jewel of this documentary for me. "The first time I heard that song," he said. "I wept... This was a man on a journey." For the record, and yes you can quote me on this, Allen Ginsberg is the only homosexual man I would seriously consider fucking. Of course, he died in 1997 and I'm not a necrophilliac.

  • "Murderball" -- Not as good as I thought it would be, but very intense and totally absorbing. Everyone in that movie is a huge asshole. But they're cripples, so it all balances out.

  • "The Life Aquatic With Steve Zissou" -- I defy you not to cry for no good reason at the climax (the reveal of the Jaguar Shark) of this movie. It's the most odd, yet moving, moment I've ever seen in a movie. All set to my favorite Sigur Ros song. I've seen it at least 20 times and it still puts a lump in my throat. "In twelve years, he'll be eleven and a half." -- "That was my favorite age." Fucking sublime.
  • A noteworthy blog

    New York Hack is unlike any other blog I have ever seen. It's the narrative of the day-to-day work life of a New York City cabdriver. Even after Guliani, 9/11 and transit strikes, there's still magic to be found in that city.