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New Releases, Twofer Tuesday, Killer Bees and Hippie Chimps   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Tuesday, March 07, 2006 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: kbade

Karl

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Sex Pistols, Johnny Cash, Neko Case, Heavy Metal Parrot   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Monday, March 06, 2006 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: kbade

Karl

...AND THE OSCARS WENT to these folks. Crash upset Brokeback Mountain -- screenwriter Roger L. Simon voted for Paul Haggis' screenplay while ripping it: "(D)espite the author's fake values and absurd vision of Los Angeles, he didn't have much competition and I had to vote for something." But the biggest upset of the night was "It's Hard Out Here For A Pimp" winning Best Original Song. Keira Knightley, Salma Hayek and Jessica Alba looked great; Naomi Watts and Charlize Theron, not so much. Playing music in back of the acceptance speeches was not o­nly an awful idea, it made everyone nervous, messing up their speeches and probably making them longer. Jon Stewart probably did better in TV Land than in the Kodak Theater. There was a fake video of Tom Hanks shown o­n keeping the speeches short, But I would like to have seen the Hanks video o­n speechifying given to the nominees. George Clooney, accepting Best Supporting Actor, praised Hollywood's progressive world view -- as did a later film montage -- when a close look shows Hollywood is a lagging cultural indicator. Paul Giamatti was robbed again. The Academy Pres. and Jake Gyllenhaal were given the job of begging people to go to the theater and not watch stuff at home o­n DVD. Jake did it introducing a montage from "epic" movies -- which was ironic, given that no epics got major noms this year and Jake is speaking to a TV audience... though Don Knotts must not have made the deadline for the dead guys montage. Richard Pryor wins Most Applause For Dying This Year. Philip Seymour Hoffman won Best Actor (as expected), but did not bark or meow, so I'm a little disappointed. Reese Witherspoon winning Best Actress, gave a classy speech, thanking not o­nly her family, the Cashes and the Carters, but also T-Bone Burnett "for helping me realize my lifelong dream of becoming a country music singer."

THE RAZZIES were dominated by Jenny McCarthy and her little-seen Dirty Love, by which I mean the movie. Hayden Christensen and the French Hotel were also among the dishonored. In a nice bit of irony, this year's ceremonies were largely indirectly funded by Ben Affleck.

THE INDEPENDENT SPIRIT AWARDS went to these folks, many of whom were also Oscar nominees. As I write this, the Oscar for Best Actress has not been awarded, but I can confidently predict that if Felicity Huffman gets the Oscar, her speech won't be as good as her Indie speech.

SEX PISTOLS have signed away their back catalog to Universal Music Publishing Group. To quote Johnny Rotten (and Pate bassist Mike Kelly): "Ever get the feeling you've been cheated?"

PINK FLOYD: Roger Waters has invited Nick Mason and Richard Wright for the performance of Dark Side of the Moon. David Gilmour is working up the courage to visit Syd Barrett.

GARY GLITTER was sentenced to three years in jail for molesting two 11-year-old girls. That seems light, though it is a Vietnamese jail.

SEEN YOUR VIDEO: Last Monday, I broke my own rule by posting The Bangles two weeks in a row, but with fresh snow o­n the ground in the Windy City, I give you the third -- The Bangles' version of Simon and Garfunkel's "Hazy Shade of Winter." A TIP: If the video doesn't stream nicely for you, hit the "pause" button when it starts playing and let the video preload a bit.

YOU TUBE: Newsweek asks whether the video sharing service is the video version of Napster (No, it's more like MySpace, imho). Besides, some copyright holders are embracing the site, like MTV2.

JOHNNY CASH: Revelatory, stripped-down tapes from the early 1970s have been discovered in his archive. Personal File, a two-CD set with forty-nine previously unissued solo Cash tracks, is due in May. "This is his 'Basement Tapes,'" says Steve Berkowitz of Legacy Recordings.

LEONARD COHEN has been granted a nine-million-dollar judgment against his former manager, but the devil is in the details. It's a default judgment, which is usually pretty easy for the defaulting party to vacate. And even if it stands, you still have to be able to collect the judgment.

BIKINI KILL is reuniting for a new album and tour.

MUSIC PRICE-FIXING PROBE has been opened by the Justice Dept., tracking a similar investigation by New York State Attorney General Eliot Spitzer.

NICK SYLVESTER was taken off Pitchfork in the wake of his fabrication scandal at the Village Voice.

ARCTIC MONKEYS frontman Alex Turner is scared he's becoming a bit sensible.

NEKO CASE gets interviewed by the Washington Post about working solo and with the New Pornographers, as well as her steadily increasing audience: "Well, I don't mind the slow climb. That's okay with me because I'm not going to a fat farm and I'm not going to be o­n reality TV. I need to tour. [Laughs.] I gotta be blue collar about this or otherwise no o­ne's going to know that I'm playing music."

BOB MOULD talks about the brave new world of digital music: "The problem now is for the consumer to wade through all these different things coming at them from different directions... The next step is people have to filter it, which has been happening with MP3 blogs and websites like Pitchfork and Stereogum. Whoever controls distribution wins the game."

PODCASTING: Tower Records plans to let folks create their own podcasts using a catalog of some 6,000 songs, which Tower will provide free of charge.

OF MONTREAL frontman Kevin Barnes talks about the flip side of even mild success: "''There was a time when we could play anything live. Now it's maybe 15 percent of the audience that knows the older stuff -- a lot of people have o­nly seen the video or heard the radio song."

BONO has upset Bolivia by ccepting a small guitar from Chile.

PETE DOHERTY UPDATE: The troubled singer should realize how serious his drug problem is when recovering addict Ozzy Osbourne offers to intervene: "Sharon was a rock to me and if he came to stay with us she'd sort him."

NATALIE PORTMAN rapped for Andy Samberg o­n SNL. We'll see how long it takes NBC lawyers to get it removed from YouTube. UPDATE: It didn't take long at all, though you can watch it now at NBC.

WEEKEND BOX OFFICE: Tyler Perry's Madea's Family Reunion /www.boxofficemojo.com/weekend/chart/">held the top spot for a second week. 16 Blocks came in second, with Eight Below in third place, leaving Ultraviolet and Aquamarine in fourth and fifth place. Dave Chappelle's Block Party came in seventh, making o­nly 6.5 million -- but that's not bad for a budget of three million.

JESSICA SIMPSON packed o­n the pounds in the wake of her split from Nick Lachey. Meanwhile, in a bit of MTV surreality show symmetry, Lachey is reportedly hooking up with Laguna Beach babe Kristin Cavalleri.

JACKO: Jermaine Jackson is full of dish in his bombshell book proposal, including that he's not sure Jacko was innocent of child molestation and his children by ex-wife Debbie Rowe were fathered by a "sperm donor."

MADONNA had to explain her kissing Britney Spears to her nine-year-old daughter.

JAMES WOODS has a new girlfriend -- 19-year-old Ashley Myrick -- the daughter of Woods' longtime golf buddy John Myrick, who has reportedly given the union his blessing.

REESE WITHERSPOON confesses that she and husband Ryan Philippe have attended marriage counselling.

GEORGE CLOONEY admits: "I've slept with too many women, done too many drugs, and I've been to too many parties." None of which will cause him to think twice about lecturing everyone else o­n how to live.

BRADGELINA: Rumors swirl that the couple have secretly married already. Pitt's ex, Jennifer Aniston, reportedly wrote and sent Pitt a 3 page letter to vent and purge him from her system.

PAMELA ANDERSON objects to breeding for large breasts... in chickens. "Why can't they just get poultry-sized implants?" asked the ex-Baywatch bombshell. Okay, I made the quote up, but you were thinking it, anyway.

LOHAN LOWDOWN: The teen queen appears in candid photos taken by friends and posted o­n the 'net which seem to include paraphrenalia that might hinder future Disney movies.

SCARLETT JOHANSSON having tantric sex? Current beau Josh Hartnett says as much in an interview where he also talks about his failed attempt at celibacy. So -- as I always suspected -- there really was no acting in 40 Days and 40 Nights.

SPIKE LEE dislikes Condoleezza Rice more than Pres. Bush: "While people were drowning in New Orleans, she was going up and down Madison Ave. buying Ferragamo shoes. Then she went to see Spamalot." Lee is apparently unaware that Rice is Secretary of State -- a position that deals with foreign policy. Had she been shipped down to Nawlins, Lee would be complaining that she was being stuck into it to make it look like Bush cares about black people.

KEIRA KNIGHTLEY has agreed to star in a film of Ian McEwan's best-selling novel Atonement, which will reunite her with Pride and Prejudice director Joe Wright.

IRAQ: The US and UK are planning to pull out of Iraq by spring 2007, according to two British newspapers. US officials deny there is a set timetable, but (imho) it's probably a goal the US would like to reach. CBS relays US intell suggesting that al Qaeda in Iraq is planning what o­ne source calls a "Big Bang" to try to spark civil war. Ralph Peters is in Baghdad looking for the civil war, but finding the locals cheering US troops. More territory is transferred to the command of the Iraqi Army as weekly attacks in the Anbar province dropped to 104 from 145. Democratic pollser Mark Blumenthal looks more closely at the controversial Zogby poll, concluding: "All we know for certain is that the poll was not a random sample of the population of all U.S. troops in Iraq." Michael J. Totten blogs from Suleimaniya, with pictures from the museum documenting Saddam's genocide against the Kurds. Gateway Pundit notes the mosque bombing is helping unite Sunnis and Shia in Bahrain.

IRAN: As the UN's nuke watchdog meets today, the man led Iran's nuke negotiations explains how the regime took advantage of talks with Britain, France and Germany to forge ahead with its secret atomic program, knowing that if they were honest, they would be referred to the UN Security Council.

CARTOON JIHAD: In the New York Review of Books, Law and Philosophy Prof. Ronald Dworkin frets that publishing the Mohammed cartoons may play into the hands of Islamic extremists, but concludes that "Ridicule is a distinct kind of expression; its substance cannot be repackaged in a less offensive rhetorical form without expressing something very different from what was intended. That is why cartoons and other forms of ridicule have for centuries, even when illegal, been among the most important weapons of both noble and wicked political movements. So in a democracy no o­ne, however powerful or impotent, can have a right not to be insulted or offended."

HURRICANE KATRINA: Friday night -- when almost no o­ne would notice -- the AP admitted it falsely reported that Pres. Bush was warned about possible levee breeches before Katrina hit Nawlins. And the media seems keen to rehabilitate Michael Brown now that the unqualified crony is pointing a finger at DHS chief Michael Chertoff. Apparently, we all hallucinated all of those e-mails where he's worrying about where to have dinner and what to wear o­n TV.

CANADIAN OIL: Oil sands deposits in Alberta are so vast that American pipelines are reversing flow.

COW ABDUCTION: You've been warned.

CELEBRITY PETS: Hilary Swank and Chad Lowe are giving their marriage another chance because they can't decide how to divide up their pets. Denise Richards has called in Hollywood's top "dog whisperer" to control her mischievous mutts, who may be traumatized by the actress' split from Charlie Sheen. Sienna Miller and Jude Law confirm their split as she dumps their dogs o­n his doorstep.

MUSHKIE THE CAT has been forced to burn through a few of those nine lives.

ROCKY THE DOG sealed a real-estate deal in Missouri.

DOGS like both kinds of music -- country and western.

WALDO THE PARROT is the lead singer of the crushing death-metal band Hatebeak. He has competition from Caninus, which is fronted by two pit bull terriers, Budgie and Basil.

BOBCAT survives being shot through the head with an arrow that lodged between the animal's eyes and out through the skull. That must be o­ne wild and crazy cougar.

ANIMAL RIGHTS EXTREMISTS CONVICTED, face three to seven years in prison and fines up to 250K. The president of the group to which the defendants belong, Stop Huntingdon Animal Cruelty, used to be Lucy Van Pelt.

GIANT WORMS are destroying ancient rice terraces in the Philippines.

CUSTOM LAB MICE can cost as much as 100K.

5979 Reads

Oscar (and pre-show) blogging   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Sunday, March 05, 2006 - 10:50 PM
Posted by: kbade

KarlI won't be blogging the Oscars or the pre-show, though I'll certainly have comments on Monday. However, if you want to follow along with others without having to get dressed up for an Oscars party, there is (or will be) group-blogging going on at Ed Champion's blog, Pajamas Media and Cinematical.

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Neko Case, Stacey's Mom, BRMC, Lions and Tigers and Bears   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Friday, March 03, 2006 - 08:40 AM
Posted by: kbade

Karl

THE WEEKEND STARTS HERE:

MUSICAL TIMEWASTER: In November, Virgin Records had people identifying 75 bands in a picture. Now the challenge is to pick out songs in a video, which is much more difficult.

NEKO CASE talks to Harp magazine about uncompromising love, art school ,being a control freak and much more. Sylvia will be delighted to learn that Case has a rescued Greyhound and a '67 Mercury Cougar she fixes herself. She tells Exclaim that she's named it Angie Dickinson at the end of a piece o­n her imminent album, Fox Confessor Brings The Flood. Her label has made a guilt-free download of "Hold o­n, Hold o­n" available. Yum!

BELLE & SEBASTIAN The Phoenix (of Swarthmore) talks to keyboard player Chris Geddes about balancing their setlist o­n the new tour between the older, twee stuff and the funkier, more upbeat new stuff.

JENNY LEWIS tells the San Diego Union-Tribune that there are autobiographical elements to her solo album, Rabbit Fur Coat, "But those elements are somewhat taken out of context. There are some touchstones that ring true. I guess it's tough to know where the story ends and the truth begins."

KILLING MUSIC, In the Village Voice, Nick Sylvester decries the ethics of those who post an artist's entire album for download. He's got a point, but writing it the week he got caught making up an article was bad timing.

ABBA star Bjorn Ulvaeus has lashed out at stars who follow New Age religions -- insisting they are just trying to boost record sales.

PEARL JAM will release its first album in three-and-a-half-years o­n May 2, with a free download from the band's Web site o­n March 8th and 9th.

SEEN YOUR VIDEO: Let's take a break from winter with "Stacey's Mom" from Fountains of Wayne. And since someone is getting other postings of this vid flagged for possible "inappropriate" content, here's a backup or two.

DINOSAUR JR. is getting two more Rhino reissues -- 1991's Green Mind and 1993's Where You Been -- along with Live at CBGB: The First Acoustic Show, which is really a J Mascis gig. They're due in May. But Lou Barlow says the reunion tour is all older stuff.

CAPTAIN BEEFHEART and THE VELVET UNDERGROUND are upcoming subjects in the "Under Review" DVD series. The discs, due out April 15, mix interview and performance footage with review and comment from experts and critics. Should make Tax Day more bearable.

THE NATIONAL has reissued Alligator with a bonus disc of B-sides, but those who already bought the disc can download the bonus material -- a fan-friendly move right out of the Wilco playbook.

BLACK REBEL MOTORCYCLE CLUB recently brought their mix of roots rock, country, gospel and blues to Washington, DC's 9:30 Club -- you can stream the gig in Real or Windows format from NPR.

PETE DOHERTY UPDATE: The troubled singer is receiving outpatient treatment for manic depression. He has told doctors he believes his problems stem from his estrangement from his father, a strict Army major.

JANE FONDA SEX TAPE allegedly involves Fonda allegedly wearing artificial equipment to pleasure the alleged Ted Turner while he services an unidentified brunette. Allegedly. Fortunately for her, it's likely no o­ne wants to see it.

NOW SHOWING: This weekend's wide releases are the action pictures 16 Blocks (51% Rotten o­n the Tomatometer, though slightly better with the "cream of the crop" critics) and Ultraviolet (not screened for critics, with all that implies), the Splash-for-kids mermaid comedy Aquamarine (a surprising-to-me 64% Fresh) and Dave Chappelle's Block Party, which is rocking a 96% Fresh rating.

BRADGELINA: Jolie supposedly found Pitt's little black book, was initially freaked out, but then joked about it. I love stories told to tabloids by "insiders" who could not possibly have observed what's reported. In any event, how do we square that story with Jolie wanting an open marriage?

SIENNA MILLER launches herself at a photographer. She may not like the paparazzi, but she ought to know that unflattering pictures of her attacking the camera don't help.

BROKEBACK SHEEP: The Humane Society claims that the makers of the gay cowboy flick Brokeback Mountain were too rough o­n the sheep. And that, my friends, is the broad side of the barn.

BRITNEY SPEARS was enraged by the photos of Spenderline with that French actress-singer that were all over the internet recently.

JACK WILD, who died from cancer at 53, is getting remembered for his Oscar nomination as the Artful Dodger in Oliver! But I will always remember him as Jimmy o­n H.R. Pufnstuf. I wish I had seen him at the Hollywood Bowl, where he shared a bill with the Brady Bunch kids, Johnny Whitaker and assorted Sid & Marty Krofft characters...

TERI HATCHER and GEORGE CLOONEY done already?

BILL CLINTON: While Sen. Hillary Clinton is bashing the idea of Dubai Ports World taking over management of some US port operations, the former POTUS is praising Dubai as an enlightened Arab nation and "a critical ally in the war o­n terror." And he is rumored to have undisclosed business dealings with Dubai, too.

TOM-KAT UPDATE: The couple frolicked o­n the beaches in Tahiti in a show of still-togetherness -- did they know that during the later stages of pregnancy, it is unsafe to submerge yourself (especially in sea water) due to a risk of infection?

ANNA NICOLE SMITH: As her struggle for millions reaches the Supreme Court, Amber Taylor combs court documents to discover Smith initially had to work the less lucrative day shift as a dancer because she was "big boned."

KEIRA KNIGHTLEY: Her recent apearance o­n Ellen has turned up o­n YouTube, so you can see her talk about that Vanity Fair cover and watch her play "Raindrops Are Fallin' o­n My Head" o­n her teeth. No, really.

SCARLETT JOHANSSON, Keira's Vanity Fair cover-mate, finally speaks out about getting groped by Issac Mizrahi at the Golden Globes: "I think he's a guy that's starting his TV career and he's making a bit of an exciting moment for himself. I can't be angry at him..."

IRAQ: Bill Roggio details missions against al-Qaeda camps in the rural areas of Anbar, where the Iraqi Army is just beginning to make inroads. At Healing Iraq, Zayed pays tribute to murdered Al-Arabiya reporter Atwar Bahjat. And Kurdish, Sunni and secular political groups wrote to the Shiite alliance to reject its selection of outgoing prime minister Ibrahim Jaafari to lead the next cabinet, complicating efforts to set up a government of national unity -- though it may help in the medium-term to remind the Shiites that they cannot succeed without support from other factions.

CARTOON JIHAD: A group of Muslim men have tried to get at the daughter of o­ne of the 12 cartoonists who drew the cartoons of Muhammed at her school. The 12 cartoonists have had their lives overturned and are now living in hiding, after receiving several death threats.

HURRICANE KATRINA: The AP made a big deal over an Aug. 28 video the reporter claims shows that federal disaster officials warned Pres. Bush and his homeland security chief before Katrina struck that the storm could breach levees. The Washington Post and the L.A. Times followed suit, though a CBS blog notes that The New York Times, Slate and NBC didn't think it was all that newsworthy. That might be because the transcript (pp. 5-6) shows that National Hurricane Center director Max Mayfield warned that levees might overtop, which is less serious than a breach. The AP reporter falsely claims there was a warning of possible breach. Mayfield also said "the currrent track and the forecast we have now suggests there will be minimal flooding in the city of New Orleans itself, but we're -- we've always said that the storm surge model is o­nly accurate within 20 percent." And the AP makes no mention of Mayfield and Bush phoning Mayor Nagin to beg him to issue the evacuation order, either. Video from Aug. 29 shows that hours after Katrina made landfall, federal and state officials did not know that the levees were failing, that Bush was asking about reports that the levees had been breached, and that Gov. Blanco said they had not at that time. (transcript) Even the AP now admits this, while repeating the false claim about the Aug. 28 video. Meanwhile, the cover story of this month's Popular Mechanics is devoted to debunking Katrina myths. For example: "Bumbling by top disaster-management officials fueled a perception of general inaction, o­ne that was compounded by impassioned news anchors. In fact, the response to Hurricane Katrina was by far the largest -- and fastest -- rescue effort in U.S. history, with nearly 100,000 emergency personnel arriving o­n the scene within three days of the storm's landfall."

COUNTRY BEARS UPDATE: Yesterday, my colleague Debbie saw the story of bears invading California suburbs and made the Sopranos connection I should have caught. She also looked into the story and found that Samson the "Hot Tub Bear" has his own monument in Monrovia, CA.

LIONS and TIGERS and BEARS help high-school wrestlers practice. Oh, my!

DRUG-SNIFFING DOGS are not fooled by Filet 'o' Fish.

SNAKE ON A PLANE could have killed someone in five to ten minutes. Get a bunch of 'em and you have a movie!

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The Smiths, Nellie McKay, Bishop Allen, Allen Toussaint, Country Bears   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Thursday, March 02, 2006 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: kbade

Karl

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