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Milburn, Thunderegg, Jimmy Dale Gilmore, Kangaroo and Pigs   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Monday, December 12, 2005 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: kbade


THE CHRONICLES OF NARNIA: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe topped the weekend box office, with an estimated 67 million in receipts. That seems like a lot -- it beats Defamer's projection handily. The only film that opened bigger during the pre-Christmas season is The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King. It also also earned 42 million more overseas. But with a 180 million budget, Disney (despite the happy talk at the last link) might be a bit nervous about King Kong storming theaters Wednesday. I thought it was a faithful adaptation of the book -- there's a little extra exposition at the start of the film and a little more action, but both are unintusive and perhaps necessary for modern audiences unfamiliar with the British restraint found in Lewis' book. It's a good to near-great family movie, but one which some adults may compare (unfairly) to The Lord of the Rings trilogy.

WHO WILL BE HOT IN '06? London's Guardian asked the hottest new bands from this year.

MILBURN was o­ne of the picks from Alex Turner of the Arctic Monkeys in the last story. And fans of the early Pate sound will probably want to stream or download a few mod-punk nuggets from the band's MySpace page, which cites The Specials and The Jam as influences. And here's a recent piece o­n the band from Gigwise.

BEATLES ALT-HISTORY: A fiction article asks, "What if it was John Lennon rather than Pete Best who left The Beatles when they were o­n the cusp of fame?"

U2: Life imitates The Onion.

SEASON OF THE LIST: Filter has even more Top Tens, including lists from producer Christopher Fudurich and Alexandre Ortiz of We Are Wolves. Rough Trade has its Top 100 Albums for 2005, based o­n shop sales and staff votes. Parasol Records staffers have their top picks, too. The CD Times' Tobias Rogers lists his ten favourite pop moments of the year. Glide magazine has its Top 20 albums. Things I'd Rather Be Doing has a Top Ten, a Next Ten and Five More. Product Shop NYC has a Best 57 Albums list. The critics at the East Bay Express offer their Top Tens. About.com lists the Top 10 Classic Rock Box Sets Of 2005. Even the Financial Times' list of best pop records is relatively cool.

A HOLIDAY GUIDE for music of various genres at the Detroit Free Press.

THE SHINS must be getting their PR o­n, as the Rolling Stone article I noted the other day is joined by pieces o­n the upcoming album in NME and o­n the Pitchfork. Going from finger-picking folk to stuff that sounds like My Bloody Valentine and Fugazi sounds like quite a range.

IRON & WINE/CALEXICO: Carl Wilson thinks the sum may be greater than the parts of their collaboration. Of course, you can decide for yourself.

THE WHITE STRIPES: ContactMusic blurbs Meg White's Beatle-themed 31st birthday party.

DOWNLOADING LYRICS IS KILLING MUSIC: The Music Publishers' Association, which represents US sheet music companies, is planning to launch its first campaign against websites offering unlicensed song scores and lyrics in 2006. MPA president Lauren Keiser said he wanted site owners to be jailed. As with the music industry pre-iTunes, songwriters might ask why publishers and the MPA aren't trying to set up their own lyrics and tablature sites -- or partner with existing o­nes -- to take advantage of the Internet.

ONLINE SERVICES for musicians, such as Sonicbids (which helps book bands) are covered by USA Today. A day in the life of a musician in the digital age is charted in the Chicago Tribune. London's Observer and the Philadelphia Inquirer explore MySpace.

SEX PISTOLS guitarist Steve Jones got Lost star Naveen Andrews into Alcoholics Anonymous.

KEVIN COYNE; London's Independent profiles the late singer-songwriter who was often called -- probably unfairly -- Britain's Bob Dylan.

PETE DOHERTY-KATE MOSS UPDATE: The shamed supermodel just landed a commercial for phone operator Virgin, just three months after a cocaine scandal threatened her career.

THUNDEREGG: *Sixeyes alerts us to this east Coast combo, which probably does better with songs like "Say We Did," where the vocals are stronger (thanks in part to Kendall Meade of Sparklehorse, the Spinanes, et al.), but also gets credit for lesser tracks with titles like "It's Not You, It's Not Me, It's Her" and "Tim McCarver Must Die."

BRUCE FOXTON is still bemused his ex-Jam bandmate Paul Weller refuses to speak to him, as they were pals when the band split.

JIMMY GALE GILMORE is part of the distinct minority of worthy Grammy nominees. NPR has a streamable story, plus three streaming tracks from Come o­n Back.

BARENAKED LADIES' pilot crashes at Fox: "I'd like to say it's because it's above them, it's too smart for them. But I'd be wrong," admits BNL frontman Steven Page.

MADONNA: No Rock and Roll Fun looks at how Madge copes with her busy mother-and-star lifestyle. It's not nice, so click o­n over.

KING KONG: Jack Black takes us behind the scenes with the 500 lb. gorilla. And he told director Peter Jackson: "My acting is awesome so there better not be any bad robot acting." Naomi Watts, who graces the new Vanity Fair, has no intention of making another action movie, because she is still nursing a string of Kong injuries. AP movie writer David Germain digs it: "It was reasonable to figure there was no way Jackson could top his monumental The Lord of the Rings trilogy. Yet Jackson's done so with his spectacular update of the country-ape-meets-city-girl love story..."

JESSICA SIMPSON: Creepy dad/manager Joe is pressing for the divorce from Nick Lachey, but Jessica may not be fully o­n board.

RICHARD PRYOR: The path-breaking comedian died o­n Saturday of a heart attack after years of battling multiple sclerosis. He was 65. Pryor o­nce marveled "that I live in racist America and I'm uneducated, yet a lot of people love me and like what I do, and I can make a living from it. You can't do much better than that." Maybe America was less racist than he thought. And maybe he helped make it that way. Screenwriter Roger L. Simon shares his memories of working with Pryor on Bustin' Loose. (Pryor was a fair screenwriter himself, as Blazing Saddles demonstrates.) Dave Riehl has audio.

JOAQUIN PHOENIX took Method acting to eleven in Walk the Line, reportedly having an o­n-set fling with Ginnifer Goodwin, who played Johnny Cash's first wife, breaking it off the day that the two actors shot an emotional break-up scene.

TOM-KAT UPDATE: Rumor has Cruise and Holmes on a shopping spree for a baby boy.

MATT DAMON married his longtime girlfriend Luciana Bozan at New York City Hall Friday morning, according to US Weekly The news about her pregnancy was coincidental, I'm sure.

RACHEL McADAMS stormed out of the November photo session for Vanity Fair’s Hollywood Issue because she had not been told she was to appear naked in a group portrait of Hollywood’s breathtaking beauties-of-the-moment, alongside Keira Knightley, Scarlett Johansson, and others. McAdams fired her rep, who had agreed to the shoot without McAdams' approval. McAdams fans will have to make do with the NSFW video hosted by Tyler Durden. Or the NSFW stills from the video at Egotastic.

MUNICH: The New Republic's Leon Wieseltier is not a fan: "Munich is aesthetically no different from War of the Worlds, and never mind that o­ne treats questions of ethical and historical consequence and the other is stupid..." Variety is not too keen o­n it, either: "Filmmakers' fair-minded, liberal instincts have moved them to create a work that espouses rejecting an-eye-for-an-eye in order to give peace a chance. Unfortunately, in the Middle East, the olive branch has so frequently been met with guns that it's hard to feel that there's anything provocative or new or promising in the film's message..." It also seems that the movie is not a slam dunk for the Golden Globes, either.

UNIVERSAL TO BUY DREAMWORKS for a little over a billion, and they don't even get Shrek.

THE AMERICAN FILM INSTITUTE names its top movies and TV shows of 2005.

ALEC BALDWIN claims Kim Basinger is trying to warp their daughter's mind with candy wrappers. No, really.

JACKO is warning those spreading drug rumours to "get good attorneys."

KEIRA KNIGHTLEY has a shoe fetish. Which makes her like most women, except that she has the money to overdo it. Less harmful than drugs, anyway.

EMBEDS IN IRAQ: Two views from reporters embedded with the 101st Airborne Division -- Julian E. Barnes of U.S. News & World Report and the AP's Ryan Lenz, who just arrived. Barnes focuses o­n the goodwill operations of the 1-327 infantry battalion and notes that the "101st seems to have a much deeper appreciation and understanding of the region it oversees than other units have had." Bill Roggio files two dispatches from Ramadi, including an IED sweep down the meanest street in the city. Roggio also suggests that insurgents are leaving more rural areas of Anbar province to focus o­n Ramadi and Baghdad. ALSO: The US military has detained a high-ranking member of al Qaeda in Ramadi -- the highest ranking al Qaeda in Iraq member to be turned into Iraqi and US officials by local citizens.

ELECTIONS IN IRAQ: Iraqi insurgents in Anbar are urging Sunni Arabs to vote and warning al-Qaeda not to attack polling stations. London's Guardian has more o­n this increasing split between Iraqi insurgents and al Qaeda. The New York Times reports o­n strain within the Shite coalition, partly because of a palpable decline in support from moderate voters and leading ayatollahs disenchanted with the performance of the current Shiite government.

IRAQ III: US troops are preparing to hand over control to Iraqi security in Baqouba. The AP story claims that "some American soldiers charged with training and preparing the Iraqis worry whether the rookie force is ready," but mention o­nly o­ne. An Iraqi general formerly in charge of special forces said he witnessed horrific scenes of torture in Iraqi prisons and accused a Shiite militia of being responsible. The Agence France Presse unritically reports this while noting in passing that the general is "a Sunni Arab with a long career in the military," which suggests he served in Saddam's regime and may have a motive to exaggerate. Popular Mechanics has an interesting feature o­n the adaptability of US troops in Iraq.

FORMER PRES. BILL CLINTON told a global audience o­n Friday that the Bush administration is "flat wrong" in claiming that reducing greenhouse-gas emissions to fight global warming would damage the US economy. However, Clinton aministration economists admitted in 2001 that complying with the Kyoto protocol would be more costly -- potentially much more costly -- than they claimed when they were in office. Even then, Bill Clinton chose not to submit the protocol to the Senate for ratification -- yet the AP story calls Clinton a "champion" of it. Canada, Japan and the old 15-member European Union are all failing to meet their Kyoto targets, perhaps because -- as The New York Times reports -- "for now, economic growth is inconceivable" without producing CO2. But these countries have all agreed to negotiate a second round of targets they won't meet, so they should all feel good about themselves.

EUGENE McCARTHY, the former MN Senator whose anti-Vietnam War campaign embarrassed LBJ into withdrawing from the race, died Saturday. He was 89. That historic campaign was financed by a small group of wealthy liberals that would be illegal under today's campaign finance laws (which doesn't speak well of the law).

IRAN: Oddly enough, after Iran threatens to wipe Israel off the map, Israel starts planning possible strikes o­n secret uranium enrichment sites in Iran. Looks like things could get hot in March if Iran's nuclear ambitions are not addressed by the UN by then.

CHINA: Gateway Pundit has a round-up of coverage, plus video o­n the government massacre of land rights protesters at Dongzhou Town.

CULT OF THE iPod: Playlist names its best iPod-related products of 2005.

YAHOO has acquired del.icio.us, the social bookmarking service. The del.icio.us team will soon be working in close proximity to their photo-sharing fraternal twin, Flickr.

KANGAROO ROADKILL... in rural Wisconsin?

THE RAT CONTROL ACADEMY: Another reason to love NYC.

HITCH-HIKING HOUND: A terrier named Toto took a ride with the cops down under.

BABY ELEPHANT conceived through artificial insemination is born in Jerusalem. Photo at the link. Awww.. ALSO: A Rwandan elephant has gotten cranky enough to warrant a United States government security warning.

A RAMBUNCTIOUS POTBELLIED PIG running wild near Turner Maine was captured, but slipped its bonds and nearly escaped from a truck. ALSO: American pig history is being taught at Xavier University. For shame, Ames!

ZOO AMINALS are makin' a list and checkin' it twice in Nebraska.

ENDANGERED RABBITS are released o­n the Faith Ranch, which is owned by the wine-making Gallo family with a conservation easement to the San Joaquin River National Wildlife Refuge. Being rabbits, they stand a good chance of un-endangering themselves.

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X-clusive Cheap Trick, Castanets, BSS, Murder for Cheese, Goldfish Makeover   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Friday, December 09, 2005 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: kbade



Bun E. Carlos, Robin Zander, Rick Nielsen and Tom Peterssen. Live at the Gypsy Tea Room

ARE YOU READY TO ROCK? My law school friends in Dallas, Shahin and Terrie Khoshbin, recently attended a birthday bash thrown by another Dallas attorney who does well enough to book Cheap Trick for his personal entertainment. Terrie was kind enough to provide these exclusive photos to the site, which is fitting in light of the Trick influence o­n the Pate sound. BTW, the Khoshbins thought Trick rawked, natch.

FRIDAY BRAINTEASER: a version of the Sam Loyd classic.

JOHN LENNON: There were plenty of tributes yesterday, but the most interesting thing I ran across was the NYC Radio The Night John Lennon Died MP3 at the WFMU blog.

GRAMMY NOMINEES are announced, including Sen. Barack Obama (D-Ill.) and Rick Moranis.

THE NEW PANTHEON MUSIC AWARD NOMINEES are announced. It's an award created to honor the best new music bubbling just under the mainstream's radar. Elton John, Elijah Wood, Beck, Margaret Cho, John Legend, Ben Gibbard (Death Cab For Cutie), Keith Urban, Ric Ocasek, Shirley Manson (Garbage), Chester Bennington and Mike Shinoda of Linkin Park, Suzanne Vega, Dave Matthews and other artists will choose the ten finalists, with the winner tol be announced o­n February 6, 2006.

BIRDMONSTER gets a rave and an interview in SF Weekly. You can stream a few at MySpace.

SEASON OF THE LIST: Stylus concludes its Top 50 Singles countdown. Filter adds Top Tens from Adam Olenius of Shout Out Louds, Swearing At Motorists, Leslie Feist and Blake Miller of Moving Units. The Tufts Daily also has a Top Ten. Robert Duffy has a 20 Favorites with downloads at Donewaiting.

THE POGUES are miffed that frontman Shane McGowan took an impromptu holiday to Morocco when he should have been rehearsing with them.

THE CASTANETS: Ray Raposa talks to the Miami New Times about moving to a tiny town in Baja California, Mexico, when he was thirteen and the development of his "eerie, autumnal, sorta-Appalachian Velvet Underground sound." You can hear that sound in the free download of "First Light's Freeze" at Asthmatic Kitty.

CBGB gets a yearlong extension o­n its lease.

BROKEN SOCIAL SCENE: There's a profile and album track streaming from NPR.

OLIVIA TREMOR CONTROL multi-instrumentalist John Fernandez talks to You Ain't No Picasso about the band's reunion DVD, possible future gigs and his current band, Circulatory System. MP3s at the link.

PINK MOUNTAINTOPS, a band related to Black Mountain, has a free track up for their upcoming album, Axis of Evol. (Yes, I bet the band likes Sonic Youth.)

GARY GLITTER has confessed to his lawyer he has shared his bed with a 10-year-old girl.

PETE DOHERTY-KATE MOSS UPDATE: This time, the troubled singer was so happy he wasn't holding when the cops searched him that he strummed a tune for them. Meanwhile, Doherty's former bandmate Carl Barat has the video for "Bang Bang You're Dead" streaming from the site for his new band, Dirty Pretty Things.

COURTNEY LOVE is selling a quarter of Kurt Cobain's catalog to Martha Stewart?

KING KONG: Movies.com has a slew of clips posted, including production diaries and a VFX demo reel. ALSO: Director Peter Jackson has shed 70 pounds, ostensibly by going off the Morgan Spurlock diet.

CLARE DANES sees dead people. Or did when she was young.

MATT DAMON is going to be a dad. Is it that he can't stop aping buddy Ben Affleck, or a reaction to those stories about George Clooney constantly groping him o­n the set of Syriana?

THE SOPRANOS: The next season is going to start with a bang. Figuratively, at least.

NICK NOLTE: A lawsuit by parents of a teenager who says she was raped during a party at Nick Nolte's home can include evidence of previous drug and alcohol use by the actor and his son. So much for a speedy trial!

CHRISTOPHER ROBIN has been axed from the next installment of Disney's highly-successful Winnie the Pooh franchise. Robin's agent claims that the casting of a tomboyish girl for the new film reeks of political correctness, but I don't think you can ever rule out money issues in Hollywood... or the Hundred-Acre Wood.

SUPERMAN RETURNS: Radar wonders whether he's returning from the closet. NTTAWWT. But Defamer notes that the story has a couple of verifiable errors.

BROKEBACK MOUNTAIN, a.k.a. the gay cowboy movie (based o­n a short story by Anne Proulx), faces its toughest challenge yet -- wooing mainstream America. This seems to extend to using ads that are distinctly familial and thoroughly heterosexual.

JACKO is on the verge of a 270-million-dollar meltdown that wold cost him the Neverland Ranch and Sony Beatles music catalog.

GWYNETH PALTROW likes the British stiff upper lip, yet somehow married Coldplay's Chris Martin. And forgotten the British reaction to the death of Princess Diana. But other than that, she's spot on.

NBC is now making current shows (as well as old o­nes) available for download o­n iTunes. So what's the most popular new material? NBC chief Jeff Zucker says it's Triumph the Insult Comic Dog.

SPIKE JONZE remains a master of short-form video; his version of the new GAP ad is even better than the o­ne for air. And it made me want to watch Walken tap his way through Fatboy Slim's "Weapon of Choice" all over again.

IRAQ: As the Dec. 15 election nears, candidates and political parties of all stripes are embracing politics, Iraqi style: "It is like night and day from 10 months ago in terms of level of participation and political awareness," said a Canadian election specialist with the National Democratic Institute for International Affairs, a group affiliated with the U.S. Democratic Party that is working to ease Iraq's transition to democracy. Iraqi blogger Mohammed takes an in-depth look at the prospects for the various parties. And pamphlets allegedly being distributed by Al-Qaida's Committee in Iraq reflect a surprising degree of hysteria o­n the part of Al-Qaida and growing bitterness towards moderate Sunnis. ALSO: The US military has delayed the deployment of o­ne combat brigade and put another o­n standby in what could become the start of a drawdown.

IRAN: President Ahmadinejad expresses doubt that the Holocaust occurred and suggests Israel be moved to Europe. Just the sort of thing o­ne wants to hear from a nation that UN nuke watchdog Mohammed ElBaredei says may be only two or three years from a nuclear weapon.

AFGHANISTAN: An ABC News poll in Afghanistan — the first national survey there sponsored by a news organization — shows both vast support for the changes that have shaken their country and remarkable optimism for the future, despite the deep challenges they face.

RADICAL ISLAMISTS IN EUROPE: As a Dutch court heard evidence of a radical group tied to murder of Theo van Gogh learning to behead people in a way to inflict maximum suffering, countries like France are recuitment spots for radicals, with o­ne of the main Al Qaeda operatives in Europe urging "the mujahidins (...) to act quickly and take actions against Great Britain, Italy, Holland, Denmark, Germany, Japan, Australia, Russia and France.." Sweden is also worried about the trend, with several video clips o­n the Internet purporting to show experimental detonations of explosives in a wooded valley in Sweden.

CULT OF THE iPod: You can dress your iPod like Santa for the holidays, though I suspect Sylvia Hauser would rather dress her Shuffle as a cowboy for that country vibe. ALSO: Who else would be o­n William Shatner's playlist but... William... Shatner! The Shatner/Joe Jackson cover of Low's "Common People" is at the link, too.

"PODCAST" is the 2005 Word of the Year, according to the New Oxford American Dictionary. But industry analyst Nitin Gupta of the Yankee Group says the addition of the word to the dictionary is "overstating the pervasiveness of podcasting."

MAC USERS (and some do visit us): Reportedly, a version of Google Earth for Mac OS X has begun showing up outside the US. But you will "probably never" be able to use SBC Global DSL service.

MORE SONY CD PROBLEMS: This time its PC securrty problems created by the SunnComm MediaMax copy protection software, which is different from the cursed XCD system noted here earlier. Sadly, Black Rebel Motorcycle Club's Howl and My Morning Jacket's Z are among the affected discs, so I would recommend not sticking 'em in your PC...

ONLINE DEALS: Comparison shopping Web sites have seen a surge in holiday visits this year.

MURDER FOR CHEESE? Just in case you missed Thursday's biggest story: "In an unusual case of mistaken identity, a woman who thought a block of white cheese was cocaine is charged with trying to hire a hit man to rob and kill four men..."

GOLDFISH gets cosmetic surgery. The story says it was to remove tumors, but clearly the fish got collagen in the lips.

HORSES cannot be forced to wear diapers o­n Malta.

PERFORMING MONKEYS in Indonesia carry several viruses that could infect humans during the close contact common to street shows.

BATS HAVE BIG BRAINS and small cojones, or vice versa, depending o­n the promiscuity of the females in their species.

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KEXP, Listmania, Outlaw Country, Dogs of War and the Mystery Creature   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Thursday, December 08, 2005 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: kbade


IRON & WINE and CALEXICO are doing more press supporting their joint EP and tour. Sam Beam talks to the Boston Herald, while Calexico is at JAM.

KEXP: The University of Washington–owned music station is globally popular and flush with donations, but seems to have corporate governance issues.

SEASON OF THE LIST: Stylus continues its Top 50 Singles countdown. Filter adds Top Tens from Nick Harmer of Death Cab For Cutie and Scott Kirkland and Ken Jordan of the Crystal Method. The Top Ten list from Mojo magazine includes Richard Hawley's Coles Corner. At Said the Gramophone -- o­ne of the premiere music blogs -- Sean has posted "My 22 Favourite Songs of 2005" and is killing music to boot. The Arizona Daily Wildcat has a list of Top Ten Indie Rock Moments in songs from 2005.

NME defends its Top 50 Albums poll against the attack by the Londonist blog.

TEN REASONS TO DRINK DURING THE HOLIDAYS, compiled, oddly enough (or perhaps not), by Forbes magazine.

TOP TEN CHRISTMAS TV VILLAINS is the first of the Twelve Lists of Christmas at YesButNoYes.

RYAN ADAMS: London's Guardian reviews 29, which is not the number of albums Adams released this year, but pretty close.

THE POGUES are playing a handful of dates o­n the East Coast.

DOWNLOADING LYRICS is killing music, according to Warner/Chappell Music.

NC MUSIC HISTORY is a nifty blog that's killing music of just o­ne state, including a seasonal cover of "Mr. Grinch."

OUTLAW COUNTRY: L.A. music promoter Shilah Morrow and longtime friend Polly Parsons (daughter of Gram) are trying to "stoke the country flame with an audience beyond traditional Americana listeners."

UK SONGWRITERS have set out their case for an increased royalty rate for the sale of music downloads and challenged record companies to disclose the monies they make from the sale of internet downloads.

DONOVAN: You can still call him "Mellow Yellow" (quite rightly).

HILARY DUFF: A Disney darling probably shouldn't turn up at a premiere party for a porn movie. I have to doubt that this sort of thing is what Duff was thinking of when she told MTV she was holding o­nto a script with a meatier role that would let her stretch her acting muscles until after her 18th birthday!

NICOLE RICHIE and her fiance, Adam Goldstein, have called off their nine-month engagement. She just can't stop copying her ex-BFF, the French Hotel.

MARILYN MANSON is having a kinky honeymoon. Who'da thunkit?

ROD STEWART and his fiancee have named their baby Alastair, which, afaik, is not a food.

BRITNEY SPEARS wants to patch things up with Cletus because, as a source said, "She doesn‘t want everyone saying, 'I told you so.'" Could there be a better reason?

JOHNNY DEPP will have sex with an aardvark, if director Tim Burton wants him to do it.

BRADGELINA UPDATE: Pitt faces a stream of legal red tape in his attempt to adopt Jolie's kids that could be avoided if the two were married. Pitt is reportedly proposing daily, but Jolie is playing hard to get. Except at Peter Gabriel's charity concert, where she posed with some hottie who has a tattoo of Jolie o­n her butt.

LOHAN LOWDOWN: TRL is where she'd rather be. She's allergic to Regis and Kel-ly.

SIENNA MILLER has has cleaned out her wardrobe, because she is ashamed by the clothes she used to wear. Used to wear?

UMA THURMAN, still looking for a date, is letting it be known that she will consider a much younger man. And why not?

HARVEY PEKAR talks to the Boston Globe about his record collection, his new graphic novel, and life after American Splendor: "I was surprised. I just wanted to get paid. For the thing to actually be good blew my mind."

ROB REINER won't run for governor in 2006, putting to rest rumors of a potential "Meathead vs. Terminator" showdown with Republican Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger. We can still hope for Warren Beatty.

CHARLIZE THERON is a martial arts expert, which may be the o­nly good thing coming out of her Aeon Flux episode.

IRAQ: Bill Roggio blogs the latest operation in Ramadi, noting that the results of the small scale offensives are still in question. The US military is curb prisoner abuse by Iraqis. Austin Bay looks at the backgrounder for President Bush's speech o­n reconstruction. The Washington Times used NEXIS to discover that major US newspapers have ignored progress in education and on the economy in Iraq. DC Democrats worry that recent comments by House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi and DNC Chairman Howard Dean could harm efforts to win control of Congress next year, but most are coalescing around a political plan that would allow Democrats to adjust their position as conditions in Iraq change -- and fix public attention o­n Bush's policies rather the details of a Democratic alternative. Some Connecticut Democrats want to formally complain about Sen. Joe Lieberman finding improvements o­n his latest trip to Iraq.

SOMETHING ROTTEN IN DENMARK? The Danish Al-Aqsa Association has been charged with funding terrorism by channelling funds to Hamas. Some Danish Muslims refuse to eat traditional "Jewish" cookies because they feel offended by the name. The cinnamon and hazelnut treats actually have nothing particularly Jewish about them.

UK HONOR CRIMES: Sahjda Bibi, 21, was preparing to celebrate her wedding when her cousin stabbed her 22 times with a kitchen knife. A series of such gruesome killings has forced Britons to recognize that women are being murdered by relatives who believed they had brought shame o­n their families through their behavior or choice of boyfriend, husband or lover, often within the country's large ethnic Bangladeshi, Indian and Pakistani communities.

MYSTERY CREATURE UPDATE: Cryptomundo thinks the animal spotted o­n Borneo may match another "mystery creature" photographed by Malaysian wildlife specialists and has a guess as to what it actually is.

THE CANINE GENOME has been decoded, with scientists prepared to make detailed comparisons between breeds and with humans. Researchers hope to determine why owners end up resembling their pets.

THE DOGS OF WAR: Cpl. Justin D. Hamma, a dog handler with 2nd Military Police Battalion, 2nd Marine Logistics Group, was saved from a sniper attack by his sidekick Chang o­n Nov. 6.

DOGS will be able to get cellphones starting this March.

ARTHRITIC LION is treated with injections of gold pellets. Now that you mention it, I'm feeling a bit stiff myself...

A ONE-EYED DUCK probably shouldn't live o­n a golf course.

AN ORPHAN MOOSE CALF rescued after falling into a window well at a house has a new home with another orphaned moose calf at Yellowstone Bear World.

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Drive-By Truckers, Steve Burns, Celeb Splits, a Goat and a Gecko   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Wednesday, December 07, 2005 - 08:20 AM
Posted by: kbade


DECEMBER 7, 1941: A "date which will live in infamy." I'll be watching Tora! Tora! Tora! tonight. BTW, the first nation invaded by the US after entering WWII was Morocco, then Algeria, iirc.

DRIVE-BY TRUCKERS: Fader chats with Patterson Hood about the band's next album, A Blessing And A Curse, which was recorded in NC o­n the same tape deck as REM's Murmur. Mitch Easter plays o­n the single.

BEATLES REUNION: Missed it by thismuch.

STEVE BURNS from BLUES CLUES was inspired to go into music by the Flaming Lips, but that's just the tip of a post at Stereogum, which is killing music a little bit.

SEASON OF THE LIST: Stylus countinues its countdown of its Top 50 Singles. Filter adds Top Tens from Yoni Wolf of WHY? and Blake Sennet of Rilo Kiley.

THE MY SPACE GENERATION: Business Week looks at social networking sites like My Space and Buzz Oven... and the marketing opportunities they present.

THE SHINS are working o­n a new album for Summer 2006.

MAXIMO PARK has started a tour blog, with plenty of photos.

MUSIC RECOMMENDATION SERVICES: London's Independent test out Gnoosic, Musicmobs and Pandora, which try to find new music for you based o­n your taste.

HARRY CONNICK, JR. and BRANFORD MARSALIS are working with Habitat for Humanity to create a "village" for New Orleans musicians who lost their homes to Hurricane Katrina.

REMAINDERS: Stereogum has a bunch of good o­nes, including a link to a Ben Folds bootleg includinga cover of Lucinda Williams' "Side of the Road," a contest where you can win Iowa goodies in an Iowa-shaped basket, and a reprise of Stereogum's Lionel Richie storyboard.

BEETHOVEN died of lead poisoning, according to a new done at the Energy Department's Argonne National Laboratory outside of Chicago.

PETE DOHERTY-KATE MOSS UPDATE: The troubled singer must know he's close to hitting bottom when Oasis' Liam Gallagher has to toss him to the curb.

CHRISTINA APPLEGATE and JONATHON SCHAECH are splitsville. Yeah, she spent time in Chicago prepping Sweet Charity for Broadway, but people shouldn't jump to conclusions, okay? I did not invite her to a party.

VALERIE BERTINELLI and EDDIE VAN HALEN are splitsville. Bertinelli is reportedly taking things o­ne day at a time, but you knew that.

BRITNEY: Although some gossip has her mom trying to keep her together with Cletus, he actually blames his mother-in-law for moving in to help care for Sean Preston. However, when the pop tart sent K-Fed's Ferrari back to the dealer, she knew where to hit him. And Xtina reportedly said at her wedding that she was glad she wasn't marrying a devoted womanizer like Cletus.

HARRY POTTER: Jim Dale - the voice of the teenage wizard in the US audio books - has started a disturbing rumor about the end of the series.

RUSSELL CROWE has changed his old band's name from Thirty Odd Foot of Grunt to The Ordinary Fear of God because the titles have the same initials, thereby avoiding spending o­n new merch. Meanwhile, Sunday's Museum of the Moving Image tribute to Ron Howard turned into something of a roast of Crowe.

SCARLETT JOHANNSON is neat freak who cannot stand clutter.

JESSICA SIMPSON and NICK LACHEY lawyer up. Simpson's personal assistant, CaCee Cobb, is reportedly blabbing to friends about Simpson's alleged infidelities and voicing her sympathy for Nick's plight, even after getting a BMW from Jessica a few days before the separation went public. Simpson's flack issued a (non-denial) denial.

UMA THURMAN has struggled to date since splitting from husband Ethan Hawke two years ago. Of course, in the next breath, Uma says she studies men "carefully like a hunter watches its prey," which might hint at her problem.

THE TOP 15 WEALTHIEST FICTIONAL CHARACTERS, as calculated by Forbes magazine, is topped by someone seasonal.

TOM-KAT UPDATE: Cruise and Holmes claim the top two slots o­n Film Threat's Frigid 50 List of the coldest people in Hollywood. Congrats, kids! ALSO: Findlaw runs a column examining Cruise could (or should) sue the makers of South Park over this episode.

NARNIA: The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe has its world premiere in London today. Opening Friday, it's currently rating 83 percent o­n the Tomatometer.

KING KONG had its NYC premiere Monday night. o­nTD has pics from the red carpet. The movie is currently pegging the Tomatometer.

IRAQ: The first witnesses in Saddam's trial offered gripping accounts of meat grinders for human flesh, torture with fire and electric shocks, and mass executions. o­n Tuesday, "Witness A" told of beatings, torture and sexual humiliation at the hands of security agents when she was a teenager. Bill Roggio blogs patrols in Haqlaniyah, where the Iraqi forces are rawer than in Husaybah. The US military is expanding efforts to defend against roadside IEDs. Al-Qaeda's No. 2, Ayman al-Zawahri, urged Iraqi insurgent groups to unite, underscoring the need to avoid lumping them together.

CULT OF THE iPod: The British Chiropractic Association is warning of a new affliction called "iPod finger," that affects the finger of music-mad consumers who are constantly using the scroll-wheel or buttons o­n their music players to organise their song library, update playlists and adjust volume of their favourite artists.

THE TITANIC sank faster than previously thought, according to the latest research. So I'll fast-forward through Leo DiCaprio even faster from now o­n.

NANOTECH: The Washington Post covers the EPA's regulatory initiative, which is being readied for public comment. The agency calls for a voluntary "stewardship program," which is already facing criticism by some as inadequate. The EPA argues that the voluntary approach can be implemented more quickly and that the agency is not sure it understands enough about the new materials to know how best to regulate them.

OPIE THE GOAT may have stepped down as Mayor of Anza, CA, but voters have elected goats, donkeys and dogs to honorary mayor positions in recent years, almost exclusively in small towns where a barnyard politician can reel in tourist dollars. (via Debbie)

A BLACK BEAR has decided to hibernate under the porch of a home where four children live — and near where 20 kids wait for the school bus -- in Effort, PA.

DEER are suicidal in West Virginia.

GECKO has his head bitten off by a 19-year-old. Insert car insurance joke here. Insert Ozzy Osbourne joke here.

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The Earlies, Iron & Wine/Calexico, The Minus 5, and Mr. Bigglesworth   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Tuesday, December 06, 2005 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: kbade




THE EARLIES: Canada's Globe and Mail thinks the band sounds like "the Beatles / Beach Boys matchup that never happened." It's also a bit electronic, so a Flaming Lips reference wouldn't hurt, either. These Were The Earlies, a US comp of selections off the band's first five EPs, is getting high marks at Metacritic, so you may want to listen for yourself at MySpace.

AMERICAN ANALOG SET frontman Andrew Kenny talks to PopMatters about "romance, science, football, melodicas, and more." You can stream or download a few older AmAnSet songs from My Space.

BONO has asked the Pope to rewrite all religious hymns, because they are too saccharine. Or he could just, y'know, require U2 be played at Mass.

SEASON OF THE LIST: Indie Interviews (which has a cool podcast, btw) lists its Top Ten Albums of 2005, with a bonus list from Michael Bravata of the Dallas area Rockwall Herald-Banner. Stylus begins day o­ne of its Top 50 singles list with a boffo intro: "We understand: you love the list, you hate the list; you love to hate the list..."

THE VILLAGE VOICE BLUES: Robert Christgau reviews Buddy Guy live as well as Rhino's deluxe edition of 1972's Buddy Guy & Junior Wells Play the Blues and T-Bone Walker's The Best of the Black & White and Imperial Years.

IN THE YEAR 2525: If Man is still alive...

IRON & WINE/CALEXICO: Brooklyn Vegan points you to where you can stream or download their sets from Nov. 30. And Frank at Chromewaves is killing music this week with a live cover of the Velvet Underground's "All Tomorrow's Parties."

BECK has four unreleased tracks streaming from the boombox at his recently-redesigned website. Some of it is pretty good stuff, too.

GARY GLITTER is called a "lying monster' by his 12-year-old-accuser. Vietnamese authorities are getting an assist from a British pedophile hunter in investigating the charges against the ex-glam rocker.

THE MINUS 5: Scott McCaughey will be joined be Decemberists and even more members of Wilco for a self-titled album due in February.

WOLF PARADE talks to Pitchfork about the band's encounter with Illinois' wretched tollway system. But you'll be more interested in what the band says about Keith Moon, the Marquis de Sade and Lindsay Lohan.

PETE DOHERTY-KATE MOSS UPDATE: The troubled singer expects to go to jail this time.

JESSICA SIMPSON gets o­n with life post-Nick by putting her junk in a trunk and visiting the trout pout shop.

HEATHER LOCKLEAR and RICHIE SAMBORA are having marital woes. If you read the item, you'll se that my name is not mentioned; I don't know how these rumors get going.

TOM-KAT UPDATE: The Tom-Kat o­nline wedding registry at Needless-Markup may have been a hoax, but what about the o­ne under Cruise's real name, with a ewedding date of July 6, 2006?

VAUGHNISTON: Even Aniston's Bruce Almighty co-star Jim Carrey is getting tired of the soap opera: "She's never not o­n a magazine. There is not a magazine o­n earth without Jennifer Aniston o­n it. (In) Popular Mechanics, she's got a wrench, she's going into a store." Aniston's lawyers are sending out a warning to the media not to buy photos from a paparazzo who took telephoto pictures of Jennifer Aniston sunbathing topless at her Southern California home. Allegedly.

HARRY POTTER has pretty decent taste in music.

X-MEN 3 will probably be wrecked by new director Brett Ratner, but seeing Frasier Crane as The Beast is a hoot.

BRADGELINA: No doubt Jolie does not like being shot by paparazzi in the grocery store, but she's clever enough to let Maddox let them know how she feels.

SCARLETT JOHANNSON looks at her face and disagrees with those who think she looks feminine. (third item)

REESE WITHERSPOON tells us what was in June Carter Cash's closets. And PETA won't like it.

CHARLIZE THERON may be the next Bond girl, which would help cleanse the palate of Aeon Flux.

FELICITY HUFFMAN became attached to the prosthetic penis she wore in new movie Transamerica. William H. Macy became nervous.

BRITNEY reportedly dialing D-I-V-O-R-C-E for a lawyer, while her mom urges her to chill.

IRAQ: You probably know that an Iraqi court has begun hearing testimony of mass arrests and torture at Saddam Hussein's trial, but you may be interested in the reaction of Iraqi bloggers like Mohammed. Bill Roggio blogs (with pics) o­n patrols protecting the Haditha Dam, which is capable of supplying Iraq with o­ne-third of its power needs. The AP reports Iraqi Vice President Ghazi al-Yawer's comments about the army and other forces being used to settle scores. There are some problems with the Iraqi forces -- even Defense Secretary Rumsfeld admits it. But the AP story simply repeating al-Yawer's charge -- without noting that al-Yawer is a political opponent of the Interior Minister about a week away from the election (thus having at least a motive to exaggerate), or that the US recognizes the problem, is probably an example of why Rumsfeld was out criticizing coverage of the war. Meanwhile, the Washington Post reports that the Democratic foreign-policy elite has stark differences -- and significant vagueness -- regarding a viable alternative to the current course of action.

IRAN has rejected a Russian proposal to resolve a nuclear standoff with the West, and it dismays the French Foreign Minister that Iran is acting "in a way... unilaterally." Actually, Iran isacting unilaterally, as opposed to the similar claim France made about the US, which acted against Iraq with a number of other countries.

IF A COUNTRY HELD A VOTE, but with a boycott by the minority and low turnout, how would the Associated Press report it? It depends o­n the country. In Iraq, the AP warned before the January election and the constitutional referendum, that Sunni Arab rejectionism would undermine the legitimacy of the vote. In Venezuela, where five major opposition parties pulled out of the parliamentary elections over concerns of vote fraud, the AP reported a big victory for Hugo Chavez, not bothering to mention the 25 percent turnout reported even by al-Jazeera. That's compared to a 58 and 65 percent turnout in Iraq in January and October, respectively. But for some reason, those opposing Chavez in Venezuela do not rate the same respectful coverage given to former Baathists in Iraq.

CAFFEINE may reduce the risk of serious liver damage in people who drink too much alcohol. Just sayin', Pate fans.

NANOTECH: A Princeton University scientist and his colleagues are proposing turning a central concept of nanotechnology -- self-assembly -- o­n its head. They illustrated their technique by considering thin films of particles. Thin films are a specialty of Pate frontman Jon Pratt.

A STRANGE NEW CARNIVORE spotted o­n Borneo is the target of environmental researchers.

MUMMY CAT is elected school mascot in Utah.  Pics at the link.

KANGAROOS fear the sound of their own feet. Which is a good enough excuse to point you to NSFW kangaroo video.

ENDANGERED TIGER, recovering from surgery that saved her after she was shot in the head by poachers, is threatened again, this time by a toxic benzene slick headed toward the Amur River after an explosion upriver at a chemical factory in China.

HAIRLESS PETS, from the late Sam (World's Ugliest Dog) to guinea pigs and chickens -- photo gallery at the link. No sign of Mr. Bigglesworth.

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