23 August 2009

Hiatus (take 2)

I've been getting the feeling like posting in this thing isn't serving any real purpose, so I'm going to take a break for a while. I guess what I'm saying is that all the things I've been posting here recently are things that I would like to actually talk to people about, not just post and forget. I guess that's sort how I see the concept of blogging (for me) right now in general. I don't expect anyone to read this who doesn't already know me, and I'd rather talk about the things I post in this blog with said people than just post them and never get any discussion out of them.

So, it's been fun, blog, but until I feel inspired again, I'll be seeing you.

20 August 2009

It Might Get Loud

On my way to see the Hurt Locker last night, my cousin mentioned a documentary film she had heard about featuring Jack White, Jimmy Page, and the Edge. Thinking this was a project probably way down the line, I quickly agreed it sounded awesome, then promptly forgot about it.

Then, we sat down in the theater, and the previews rolled:

Seeing it on the big screen, materialized in front of me, I got downright giddy for this movie. Just the concept of three amazing guitar innovators from three distinctly different musical eras getting together to jam and discuss music...holy fuck. How can you not want to see this? Speaking from a personal perspective, I went through childhood with my dad showing me the music of The Edge (U2), and went through high school and college devouring anything Jack White was a part of (the White Stripes, the Raconteurs, the Dead Weather), so naturally I'd get excited to see this movie. I have a feeling, though, that this movie will end up being something that is accessible to a much more diverse audience than just people like me. When you get down to the bottom of it, this film's about the creative process; how inspiration comes and expresses itself, and how talent feeds off of other talent. It doesn't hurt that it's directed by the same guy who did An Inconvenient Truth, either.But seriously, I hope you're as excited as I am. This should pan out to be pretty damn cool.

15 August 2009

Bragging Time

Ok, so this entry is going to be pretty much devoted to tooting my own (and my colleagues') horn. Fair warning.

First off, if you know me personally, you'll know I'm a former DJ/Program Director/Station Manager of 91.1 FM WDUB, Granville, OH. A small station, yes; but we've been able to claim Steve Carell as an an alumni, as well as placing in the top 20 for the Princeton Review's 2008 list of most popular college radio stations (during which time I was in charge of the whole station. toot toot). Anyway, the point is, though I am no longer an active part of WDUB, I still take great pride in all of its accomplishments, including most recently a deal with American Eagle to produce mix tapes for all of their national locations. That's right folks. WDUB was asked to make a mix tape for American Eagle. Apparently, the VP of marketing for AE lives in Granville, and loves WDUB enough (yes, I am aware of how many acronyms I'm throwing around here) to ask us to make a mix tape. The final product is a mix with UCLA's station, but still, to be a principle collaborator is still pretty cool. So, if you're ever in AE, and hear some rockin' tunes, thank the Doobie!

Here's the track list, just so you can know exactly when to feel extra grateful:

"Daylight" - Matt and Kim
"Rudie Can’t Fail" - The Clash
"Summertime Clothes"- Animal Collective
"Star Witness" - Neko Case
"Never Had Nobody But You" - M. Ward
"I’m Good, I’m Gone" - Lykke Li
"Airport Taxi Reception" - Sondre Lerche and The Faces Down
"Rebel Rebel" - David Bowie
"Sunshine" - Lupe Fiasco
"People Gotta Lotta Nerve" - Neko Cae
"Spanish Bombs" - The Clash
"100 Yard Dash" - Raphael Saadiq
"Funny Little Frog" - Belle and Sabastian
"Dead Sound" - The Raveonettes
"Daft Punk If Playing At My House" - LCD Soundsystem
"Run To Your Grave" - The Mae Shi
"Kids" - MGMT
"Magnificent" - U2
"Take The Money and Run" - Steve Miller Band
"Riot Radio" - The Dead 60’s
"Fire cracker" - Ryan Adams
"Plastic Bertrand" - Ca Plane Pour Moi
"Getting’ Up" - Q-Tip
"Welcome to the Working Week" - Elvis Costello
"Again & Again" - Roots Manirva
"Heads Will Roll" - Yeah, Yeah Yeahs
"Death to Los Campesinos" - Los Campesinos
"Ready for the Floor" - Hot Chip
"Creator" - Santogold
"Before We’re Dead" - Ferraby Lionheart
"Santeria" - Sublime
"Alternative to Love" - Brendan Benson
"On the Table" - A.C. Newman
"Two Weeks" - Grizzly Bear
"Guns are Drawn" - The Roots
"Dancing Choose" - TV on the Radio
"Subterranean Homesick Blues" - Bob Dylan
"Rapper’s Delight" - The Sugarhill Gang
"Keep Me In Mind" - Little Joy
"Cobrastyle (feat. Mad Cobra)" - Teddybears
"Take My Time" - Junior Senior
"Go Your Own Way" - Fleetwood Mac
"Around the Bend" - The Asteroids Galaxy Tour
"The Devil Never Sleeps" - Iron & Wine
"Young Americans" - David Bowie
"The Reeling" - Passion Pit
"On Board" - Friendly Fires
"Fake Palindromes" - Andrew Bird
"My Girls" - Animal Collective
"Think I’m In Love" - Beck
"Drown in the Now" - Crystal Method F/ Mathisyahu
"Heavy Metal Drummer" - Wilco
"Gimme Little Sign" - Brenton Wood
"Scenario" - A Tribe Called Quest
"Do Your Thing" - Basement Jaxx
"Know Your Enemy" - Green Day

Moving on to the next boast, I'm apparently a decent photographer. While I was visiting a friend in San Francisco last fall, I snapped a couple of pictures of Alcatraz during a day of touring around. After that, I posted them to Flickr, and promptly forgot about them. Then, last month, I receive a notice saying one of my pictures has been entered in some online tour guide contest. No cash prize or anything, but still, the mere nomination of one of my pictures for any sort of contest is sort of flattering. Naturally, I submitted the photo into the contest, not thinking it would get anywhere. Fast forward to tonight, though, and I get an e-mail saying my photo has been selected to appear in Schmap's guide of San Francisco. Again, toot toot.

That's pretty much it for now. I had a long day at work, with plenty of verbal and physical abuse abound, so I thought some self-aggrandizing might even out the night.

12 August 2009

Them Crooked Vultures

So, I've been sitting on this information for a few days (why I don't quite know), but there is a new supergroup in town to end all supergroups. Them Crooked Vultures is a combination of Josh Homme (frontman of Queens of the Stone Age), John Paul Jones (multi-instrumentalist of Led Zeppelin), and Dave Grohl (drummer of Nirvana as well as...oh come on, you know who Dave Grohl is). Needless to say, when I first heard of this team-up I did something that Merriam-Webster's dictionary refers to as "flipping a shit."

And as if this lineup as well as the promise of an upcoming tour schedule wasn't enough of a tease, there's now a 14 second video to taunt you even more.

A Softer World

Alright, so I discovered this site a long time ago, but I only rediscovered it's awesomeness recently. A Softer World is sort of a comic, and sort of not. While it has three panels (sometimes six), it uses photography instead of illustration and often forgoes funny punch lines for sadder or darker themes. To put it in the author's own words, "It should be noted that this is in the tradition of George Simenon's 'romans durs' (or 'hard novels') and not in the lesser traditions of comics like Peanuts or anything else not French." That's not to say that there aren't some darkly funny moments in this strip, but even there the humor tends to be a bit darker.

So yeah, this is what I've been wasting my time with as of late. I'm currently enjoying this so much that I'm considering stealing the idea, and making my own. Probably won't post them (at least not here), but they'll be fun to work on. We'll see.

Oh, and also, this is kindof nerdy, but it makes me happy to actually recognize some of the locations of these pictures from traveling. For instance, I've been to this exact tree on some obscure park in Oregon. The simple things in life, eh?

10 August 2009

Fall Concerts in MD

With the summer coming to a close, I'm now starting to look once again at the local venues' calanders for upcoming fall shows. Here's a brief list and some descriptions of what's playing in the Charm City/DC area. Hopefully, I'll also get around this time to actually writing some reviews after the shows.

8/16 : Route 29 Revue (Old Crow Medicine Show/Grace Potter & The Nocturnals/Iron & Wine/Levon Helm) @ Merriweather Post Pavilion

As of now, it's not entirely likely that I'll be able to go to this show, just because I'm currently scheduled to work a shift during the show (ironically at a restaurant that's right next to this venue). Still, though, I'm doing my best to get out of the shift, because this show will be fantastic. I've seen two of the four acts live before (OCMS in DC and in Providence, and Grace Potter in DC), and they were both some of the best live music I've ever seen. In all honesty, I made up my mind to see this show before I even saw Iron & Wine and Levon Helm on the bill. Still, though, Levon Helm is legendary enough (both for his role in The Band as well as his solo career), and Iron & Wine's music is pleasant enough so that these additions o
nly make me want to see this show more. The only downside is that, because of the large lineup and bigger venue, tickets are a bit pricier than I'm used to ($35 for lawn seats).

8/28 : The Flaming Lips @ Merriweather Post Pavillion

What do you get when you combine Marvel superheroes, giant hamster balls, flying saucers, laser light shows, balloon animals, dancing Santas and aliens, giant projectors, and about a metric ton of confetti? A Flaming Lips show, that's what. You might think I made a few of those up, but take my word for it, every single part of that list plays an integral part of the experience that is the Flaming Lips. Hell, I even left a few things out. The point is, the Flaming lips is one of the most spectacularly over-the-top shows I've ever had the pleasure of going to, and it's going to take a lot to keep me from going again.

9/5 : !!! @ The Black Cat

There's two reasons I want to see this show. One is that it's !!!
(pronounced "chk-chk-chk", or any other trio of monosyllabic onomatopoeias actually). The other is that it's !!! at the Black Cat. If you've never been to the Black Cat before, it's a very intimate venue, which I almost always prefer to the large venues. Especially for music that causes dance parties to break out. In any case, though, I've heard through the grapevine that these guys put on an entertaining live show, and at $16, it's worth taking a gamble on.

9/11 : Ghostland Observatory @ 9:30 Club

I missed the chance to see this duo in NYC at the CMJ Music
Marathon in 2007, and I've been regretting it ever since. Although the live Youtube videos haven't blown me away so far, there was so much buzz around the live show of these guys back at CMJ that I'm still curious. Not only that, but their studio album sounds Robotique Majestique sounds like a supergroup of Freddy Mercury and Daft Punk. Don't believe me? Watch this (song actually starts around 1:05). And if that's not enough incentive, just look at these guys. They look just crazy enough to throw one hell of a live show.

9/20 : GWAR @ Sonar.

This. Show. Will. Be. Awesome. GWAR has been described as Kiss meets Rocky Horror Picture Show meets WWF meets the Simpsons. After that description alone, how can you not want to see this? Need more convincing? How about watching them - in character - on the Joan Rivers Show? Still not convinced? How about their music video that involves dunking on Jesus (around 2:25)? If you're still not convinced, I'm at a loss. Clearly you have no sense of adventure or penchant for the absurd.

10/15 : The Raveonettes @ the Ottobar

Since getting into the Raveonettes back in high school, I have missed every single opportunity to see them live for some reason or another (totaling about 6 opportunities). There is no way I can let myself miss another chance like this, especially when they're playing at my favorite dive bar in Baltimore. It's almost getting to the point where this band has become my white whale. Except that the Raveonettes never really took my leg and scarred my face. And I really just want to see them, not offer money to the first person who sees them and then kill them. But hey, I didn't say it was the perfect analogy.
Moving on, though, to describe the music, it's essentially like if Buddy Holly got his hands on a distortion pedal and got the guitarist from the Kinks to help out on solos. Their first two albums were recorded in one key apiece (B-flat minor for Whip It On, B-flat major for Chain Gang of Love), but they later abandoned this system for a full range on Pretty in Black and Lust, Lust, Lust. Either way, this Swedish duo can really rock, and I'll be damned if I miss another chance to see it live.

That's all of the concerts I have lined up for now. More will turn up, I'm sure, and I'll adjust my budget and calendar accordingly; but until then, this is what my fall is looking like.

08 August 2009

Where The Wild Things Are trailer

That's right. There's a new trailer for Where The Wild Things Are. Unlike the last one, this one features a lot more dialogue, and it really gives a much better idea of what the movie will actually be like. Don't get me wrong, the first trailer melted my heart, but it didn't exactly give me a clear idea of what to expect for the full-length feature. This new trailer, though, gave the impression that the movie will be focused around a child fighting growing up, and how his fantasy world and reality collide. And yes, it still melts my heart. And yes, it still features "Wake Up" by the Arcade Fire.