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New Releases, Grizzly Bear, Basia Bulat, Doggie Mass   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Tuesday, March 11, 2008 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: Karl

Karl

RIPPED FROM THE HEADLINES: NY Gov. Eliot Spitzer, a/k/a "Client 9," who investigated radio airplay and payola while serving as the state's Attorney General, totally gave me earworm yesterday for Labelle's "Lady Marmalade."  And The Police's "Roxanne."  That's yer first Twofer Tuesday.

NEW RELEASES:  Cassettes Won't Listen, Kaki King, Why?, Black Hollies and more are streaming in full this week from Spinner.

ROBYN HITCHCOCK & ANDY PARTRIDGE are collaborating on a possible album, one of many projects Hitchcock has in the works, according to Billboard.

GRIZZLY BEAR:  You can stream a new song the band debuted on KCRW, "While You Wait for the Others," via YANP.  The reverb on this take gives it a bit of a 60s vibe, methinks.

R.E.M. will debut Accelerate, its newest album, via music site/Facebook app iLike starting March 24th. Warners won't start selling the album till April 1.

VAMPIRE WEEKEND played "A-Punk" and "M79" on the Peacock Saturday, with an assist on the latter from a string section.  That makes a Twofer of Twofers.

STEVE WYNN answers 20 questions for PopMatters, nicely navigating the dreaded "Star Wars vs. Star Trek" question.

BASIA BULAT does the four free songs thing for Daytrotter, including two unreleased originals and a cover of Sam Cooke's "The Hem Of His Garment."

THE ACORN:  Rolf Klausener and Jeff Debutte warm up for SxSW in an interview at MOKB, which includes Dodge asking about Canadian football.  Two streaming tracks also.

WILCO:  In an interview with The Australian, Jeff Tweedy makes clear there is a bit of friction with Billy Bragg, with whom the band recorded Mermaid Avenue and Mermaid Avenue II: "Nothing against Billy. He's just full of sh-t.  That's just what he's built his whole life on, so that's all right."  Me-OW!

BRITNEY SPEARS and her Fed-Ex are battling over a million dollars in legal fees from their child custody case as an official let stand a court order that has denied her custody and limited visits with their two sons.  On the upside, TMZ has learned that the pop wreck is prepping for a small guest part on CBS's hit "How I Met Your Mother."  And Spears has been granted a $1500 weekly allowance by the L.A. Superior court.

HEATHER LOCKLEAR:  The suicide call that turned out to be a false alarm may have been placed by Locklear's psychiatrist.

SIENNA MILLER reportedly has agreed to marry lover Rhys Ifans... at the third time of asking.

GEORGE CLOONEY, otoh, is denying a report that he is secretly engaged to former Fear Factor winner Sarah Larson.

COURTNEY LOVE:  According to The Sun, the rocker went to the LAPD to report to claim that identity thieves used Kurt Cobain's social security number to buy a $3.2 million house and also set up 188 credit cards in her name.  But sources tell TMZ Courtney is simply (and possibly medically) delusional.

TOM-KAT UPDATE:  Ex-Scientologist Marc Headley - who used to produce promotional films for the controversial religion - tells the uber-reliable News of the World that Cruise landed Holmes after a series of casting calls for actresses to fill the girlfriend role.  "First they rounded up Scientologist actresses like Erica Christensen, Erica Howard and Sofia Milos.. But they were all rejected... Then... they went for Jennifer Garner, Scarlett Johansson and Jessica Alba, in that order."  Garner and Alba didn't bite; Scar-Jo showed, but fled when she discovered the "audition" was at the Scientology Center in Hollywood.

HELENA CHRISTENSEN & JOSH HARTNETT are dunzo.  It was not my fault; they had issues.

UN-BOURNE?  Matt Damon and Paul Greengrass are tamping down last week's Variety story about a fourth installment in the Bourne franchise.

WOODY HARRELSON was reportedly none too pleased to be asked whether the cast of "Semi-Pro" if they got a contact high while working with him.

INDIANA JONES:  The adventuring archeologist's biggest stunt to date may be rescuing this summer box office.  Meanwhile, the new issue of Entertainment Weekly has semi-spoilers.

JESSICA SIMPSON manages to get some bad -- possibly unfair -- press on her trip to Kuwait - where she's performing for troops as part of Operation MySpace.

TERROR in the UK:  A man who knew some of the 7 July bombers has pleaded guilty to possessing an al-Qaeda training guide.  Judge James Stewart QC said he would face a maximum sentence of two years.

AFGHANISTAN:  Thousands of Afghan students chanted "Long live al Qaeda," during a protest aimed at Denmark and the Netherlands. Protesters accused the two European countries of insults against Islam.  Sunday's protest was in Jalalabad, where Osama Bin Laden made his last public appearance in late 2001.  Meanwhile, the Dutch government wants to boost development in Afghanistan as essential to ensure progress towards peace.  BONUS:  A British soldier soldier who almost single-handedly took on 150 Taliban after he and his 50-man convoy were ambushed in Afghanistan has been awarded the Military Cross: "They started it. We were going to finish it."

IRAQ:  Bill Roggio looks at an Iraqi Army operation to search for kidnappers in Mosul.  Michael Yon's latest dispatch is also from Mosul and involves Guitar Hero and a Predator drone.  MEMRI's translation of the Qatari daily Al-'Arab's interview with AQI commander in northern Iraq suggests AQ is on the ropes.  However, AQI may be shifting tactics back to the big, headline grabbing attacks in Iraq that helped plunge the country into chaos, a senior US commander said Monday.  Michael J. Totten blogs from Al Farris, which was part of Saddam's attempt to launch Iraq into the sci-fi future before he ruined his country with four wars, two genocides, and an international sanctions regime.

HUNDREDS OF DOGS, many dressed as babies or clowns, were taken to celebrate mass in Masaya, Nicaragua on Sunday, an annual ritual where the owners pray for their pets to be cured or avoid falling ill.

A WOMAN determined not to let her kitten become the second victim of a hungry python broke her wrist and was bitten twice as she fought off the large snake.

WILD ELEPHANTS disrupted an election in eastern Sri Lanka.

A BOULDER, CO SALON OWNER has been ticketed for dyeing her miniature poodle pink - and the woman said she plans to fight back.  Cici is a "breast-cancer awareness dog" that's been showing off her pink coat for three years at Zing Salon.  Pic and video at the link.

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WFMU Jam, Lightspeed Champion, Kevin Drew, Polar Cub Twins   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Monday, March 10, 2008 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: Karl

Karl

WFMU JAM:  Ted Leo, Death Cab's Ben Gibbard, and comedian Patton Oswalt raised over 50K in three hours for this year's WFMU pledge drive, with a set that inlcuded Blondie's "Union City Blues" and two numbers written by Neil Diamond -- the Monkees hit "Look Out, Here Comes Tomorrow" and what host Tom Scharpling called the "worst song ever." "Porcupine Pie."  The group also belts out ABBA's "Take A Chance On Me," which we learned last week is the gayest song ever. (Pic via Pitchfork.)

THE ROCK & ROLL HALL of FAME has its annual induction ceremony tonght.  The NYDN previews the Class of 2008.  Canada's Gazette focuses on Leonard Cohen.

LIGHTSPEED CHAMPION, Devonte Hynes's inventive indie-folk pop project, strips down its sound a bit for a World Cafe gig you can stream in full via NPR.

BJORK started shouting "Tibet! Tibet!" after performing her song "Declare Independence" at her Shanghai concert.  Let's go to the video.

STEPHEN MALKMUS talks fantasy baseball with an interviewer from 17 dots.  No, really: "I love Ryan Braun. He was incredible last year. He's kind of can't-miss. I know they're thinking of moving him to the outfield. He's bad at defense, but from a fantasy perspective he's gold..."

KEVIN DREW gets a cameo from Canadian rock legend Tom Cochrane in the video for "Lucky Ones," which also documents Drew's band serving liquor to minors at Lee's Palace in Toronto. (Profanity alert.)

STREET FIGHTING MEN:  Documentarian Leo Burley pens a piece for London's Independent  comapring the artistic reactions of Mick Jagger and John Lennon to the political tumult of 1968.

GARY LOURIS gets a segment on Weekend Edition, along with music and video from the MPR studios, streaming on demand via NPR.

MOUNTAIN GOATS frontman John Darnielle comments on other people's songs for Harp magazine.

DRIVE-BY TRUCKERS frontman Patterson Hood enthuses over Elton John, The Kinks and Tom Petty (among others). again for Harp.

NORMAN SMITH, who was the lead recording engineer for every Beatles song through 1965 and who as a producer helped usher in an era of psychedelic rock when he discovered the band Pink Floyd, died of cancer last Tuesday in East Sussex, England. He was 85.  At age 50, Mr. Smith embarked on a solo singing career, taking the stage name Hurricane from a movie title. His hit, "Oh Babe, What Would You Say," was a song he had written and hoped to sell but ended up recording himself at the urging of a producer.

BRITNEY SPEARS:  OK! magazine reveals the ghastly details of packages from a stalker that have the pop wreck's security team running to the FBI.  On-again off-again paparazzo bf Adnan Ghalib was turned away from the singer's gated community Friday night.

WEEKEND BOX OFFICE: 10000 BC took the top slot with 35 million bucks, though that might be disappointing on a 105 million budget.  Last year's 300 made twice as much in around the same timeframe.  College Road Trip came in second with 14 million, which is probably not bad, depending on how low the budget was.  Vantage Point drops to third, but has made 51 million on a 40 million budget.  Semi-Pro dropped 61 percent from first to fourth in its continuing flop.  Jason Statham's The Bank Job rounds out the Top Five, despite opening on only 1,603 screens; it may have legs.  The Spiderwick Chronicles looks unlikely to break even.  The Other Boleyn Girl dropped a surprising 51 percent.  Jumper, Step Up 2, and Fool's Gold round out another unimpressive weekend at the movies.

MATT DAMON and wife Luciana are expecting another baby to be Bourne.

LISA MARIE PRESLEY is suing the Daily Mail for libel over publishing an article alleging she is overweight, which she claims forced her to confirm that she is pregnant.

LINDSAY LOHAN wants the sound of her upcoming album to be "kind of Kylie Minogue-meets-Rihanna."  Be afraid.  Be very afraid.

HEATH LEDGER:  The late actor's will was not updated since his relationship with Michelle Williams and the 2005 birth of their daughter Matilda Rose.  Ledger's family moved quickly to tell the public that Matilda and Michelle would be provided for, as Heath would have wanted.

PATRICK SWAYZE:  Dirty Dancing co-star Jennifer Grey is among those publicly wishing Swayze well after his pancreatic cancer diagnosis.

HEATHER LOCKLEAR was apparently the victim of a bogus suicide call which brought the Ventura County Fire Department and two paramedics units to her home Saturday.

HORTON HEARS A WHAT?  All hell broke loose at the Hollywood premiere of "Horton Hears a Who!" Saturday when a group of pro-lifers infiltrated the screening, then chanted anti-abortion slogans after the flick.  Not only rude, but counter-productive, imho.

THE DARK KNIGHT:  The Grey Lady takes you behind the scenes of the next Batman movie in a profile of director Christopher Nolan.

ICYMI:  Lufthansa flight LH44 from Munich had a wingstrike while trying to land in a cross-wind in Hamburg.  No one was injured; the plane landed using another runway.

TERROR in NYC?  The FBI said Friday that a man who mailed rambling letters to Congress this week featuring a photo of a Manhattan military recruiting station was not linked to Thursday's bombing outside that station: "It appears to have been a matter of coincidental details and unfortunate timing on his part."  I'll say!

AFGHANISTAN:  A 19-year-old medic from Texas will become the first woman in Afghanistan and only the second female soldier since World War II to receive the Silver Star, the nation's third-highest medal for valor.  After a roadside bomb tore through a convoy of Humvees, wounding five soldiers in her unit, Army Spc. Monica Lin Brown ran through insurgent gunfire and used her body to shield wounded comrades as mortars fell less than 100 yards away.  Brown certainly deserves the media attention -- though so have many others military heroes generally ignored by national news outlets.

IRAQ:  Bombings in Baghdad are on the rise, though still well below last year's levels.  The US military said Sunday it does not believe the recent attacks reflects a trend toward an overall increase in violence. US troops discovered a mass grave containing 100 bodies near Khalis in the Diyala province; the skeletal remains suggested it was an older site.  The NEFA Foundation has released a new chart by Evan Kohlmann mapping the complex network of Sunni insurgent groups fighting in Iraq.  Iraq's deputy interior minister said that Iraqi-Saudi cooperation to stop insurgents, mainly Saudis, from crossing the Iraqi border was continuing amidst intensified efforts to enhance bilateral relations between the countries.  The US and Iraq are opening negotiations in Baghdad on a blueprint for a long-term relationship, plus a narrower deal to define the legal basis for a US troop presence, a Pentagon official said Friday.  Radical cleric Moqtada al-Sadr claims in a letter that he is stepping down from his position, distancing himself from people, and focusing on his studies.  The NYT has the latest Iraqi scorecard from the Brookings Institution.

AUSTRIA UPS THE ANTE with the public debut of polar cub twins.  Germany may declare war.

MAKENA, a baby lesser spot-nosed guenon, debuts at at the Central Florida Zoo and Botanical Gardens.  Pics and video at the link for those of you who -- like me -- had no clue there was such an animal.

KITTY DEATH CAMPS!  Thousands of pet cats in Beijing are being abandoned by their owners and sent to die in secretive government pounds as China mounts an aggressive drive to clean up the capital in preparation for the Olympic Games.

VIETNAM has launched a crackdown on hamsters, a wildly popular pet here in the current lunar Year of the Rat, fearing an influx of the foreign-bred rodent furballs could spread disease and destroy crops.  Richard Gere was uavailable for comment.

400-LB LION ATTACK UPDATE:  I already linked to a story on the attack on British teacher Kate Drew a while back, but now the Daily Mail has the pictures of the attack itself.

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The W h o, Cat Power, SxSw, Cutout Bin, Cat of 1000 Faces   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Friday, March 07, 2008 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: Karl

Karl

THE WEEKEND STARTS HERE:

...with the HIGH NUMBERS!  Actually, this mod quartet had changed its name before they hit French TV's Music Hall for a truly live set on March 30, 1966, but the Tuber you posted this set is rightly concerned about copyright holders.  Part 1 features "Substitute," plus covers of the Everlys' "The Man with the Money" and Martha Reeves & the Vandellas'"Dancing in the Streets".  Part 2 includes a cover of "Barbara Ann" and "My Generation."  Plenty of Moon shining in both clips.

CAT POWER stopped by the World Cafe for a chat and mini-set from her Jukebox you can stream on demand via NPR.

BOB MOULD talks to the Cleveland Scene about his electronica period: "(Dance music) was more punk rock than anything that was going on in punk rock and alternative at the time..."  Plus more.

SxSW PREVIEW:  All Songs Considered fires folks up for the festival next week with selections from Bon Iver, Evangelicals, Times New Viking, Tift Merritt, Thurston Moore, Black Mountain, Vampire Weekend and more...

WILCO frontman Jeff Tweedy spoke to the NYT about how migraines and mood disorders impacted his childhood, his musical career and his creative and personal life.

LOS CAMPESINOS! have a clip for "Death to Los Campesinos!" that is more upbeat than its title and not quite the "in-studio video" it seems at first glance.

26 TEMPTING BUT INAPPROPRIATE FUNERAL SONGS, courtesy of The A.V. Club,with plenty of A/V.  Frankly, I wouldn't have a problem with the Jim Carroll or the Hank Williams.

BEIRUT frontman Zach Condon talks to Australia's The Age about his long, strage trip to indie semi-stardom: "The one big shocking thing, to me," says the now 22-year-old Condon, "is that my parents never put up a big shock about the way I've led my life. The fact that I dropped out of high school, that I've done nothing but travelling and recording ... they never tried to intervene, to save me from myself."

VAN HALEN:  The reunion tour is paused so Eddie can get medical treatment, but his ex Valerie Bertinelli says he's okay: "He's just being very pro-active. It's not as awful as people think it is. I'm so proud of him right now. He sounded terrific, and hopefully they'll start back up again on the 11th."

THE 50 GAYEST SONGS OF ALL TIME: NTTAWWT.

CUTOUT BIN:  From The Adele to The Zombies, from Buzzcocks to Booker T, from Urge Overkill to Kenny Rogers to OK Go covering Rick Springfield, this Friday's fortuitous finds can be jukeboxed or streamed individually on the Pate page at the ol' HM.

PATRICK SWAYZE tells people not to write him off just yet, after news of his pancreatic cancer became public.  The Dirty Dancer's doctor says Swayze "has a very limited amount of disease, and he appears to be responding well to treatment thus far."  The A.V. Club can hook you up with the 1991 unauthorized Swayze bio-comic and more...

NOW SHOWING:  This weekend's wide releases are 10000 B.C., which is currently scoring 14 percent on the ol' Tomatometer; College Road Trip, which currently scores the goose egg; and The Bank Job, which is scoring 75 percent.

BRADGELINA has reportedly moved into a sprawling 270-acre ranch just outside of Smithville, TX -- a small, rural town about 29 miles southeast of Austin -- where they don't have to worry about being hounded by paparazzi.  It looks like the couple's new baby could be the first Jolie-Pitt to be born on American soil.

ROBERT DOWNEY, JR. is in blackface for hin Tropic Thunder, an epic action comedy co-starring Ben Stiller and Jack Black.  Pic at th link.

CHRISTINA AGUILERA pays homage to Hitchcock's icy blondes in a new campaign for the Stephen Webster jewellery line.  Pics at the link.

BRITNEY SPEARS' bulging belly fueled pregnancy rumors again, as paparazzo Adnan Ghalib was spotted again on the Spears property.  Meanwhile, the L.A. county court commissioner has ruled that Jamie Spears can draw $2,500 a week from Britney's accounts as conservator of her affairs.

SAM ROCKWELL, a highly underrated actor (imho)  talks to The A.V. Club about his new director's eccentric style, the pleasures and perils of improvisation, and what it would take for him to agree to be in a zombie movie.

KEVIN SMITH is shooting Zack & Miri Make a Porno in western Pennsylvania, in which Seth Rogen and Elizabeth Banks as broke friends who uncover romantic feelings for each other while making their own X-rated tape to pay off their debts.  Some question the title, but industry analyst Jeff Bock probably nails it: "I don't think anything is too risqué for Kevin Smith fans."

WATCHMEN:  The classic graphic novel is a year away from your local cinema, but director Zach Snyder (300) has released pictures of some of the cast in costume.

SPEED RACER will be simultaneously released to IMAX and conventional theatres on May 9, 2008.  There's a bit of the plot there, too -- though nothing you coud not have guessed from the trailer.

STAR WARS vs. SAUL BASS:  How the credits to the classic space opera might have looked in the 60s style of the master of movie titles.

TERROR in NYC:  Police officers and firefighters cordoned off much of Times Square for more than two hours Thursday after a small explosion - set off, the authorities said, by an "improvised explosive device" - damaged the front of the Armed Forces Career Center on the traffic island bounded by 43rd and 44th Streets, Seventh Avenue and Broadway at 3:43 a.m.  Police said the device was "roughly similar" to those used in earlier bombings at foreign consulates in Manhattan, in 2005 and 2007.  Members of the US House of Representatives were mailed a letter and photo of the recruiting station before it was bombed, according to House insiders and law-enforcement officials.  One source described the letter as a "20-page rambling rant," and the AP reported the envelopes included a "holiday greeting card" with the message "Happy New Year, We Did It" on the cards.

ISLAMISM in the UK has caused the House of Lords to abolish the laws on blasphemy after a wrenching, two-hour debate: "It is crystal-clear that the offenses of blasphemy and blasphemous libel are unworkable in today's society," Kay Andrews said in introducing the government-backed amendment, adding that "as long as this law remains on the statute books, it hinders the UK's ability to challenge oppressive blasphemy laws in other jurisdictions."

THE NETHERLANDS: The Dutch government has raised its terror threat level, and the Taliban has threatened revenge killings against Dutch troops in Afghanistan following controversy over the anti-Koran film "Fitna." Dutch television stations have refused to air it.  During a meeting in Paris, French Pres. Sarkozy told Dutch Prime Minister Balkenende that he will support the Netherlands if it comes under attack because of the film.

IRAQ:  Two bombs went off within minutes of each other in a crowded shopping district in the capital Thursday, killing at least 53 people and wounding 130 - a reminder that deadly attacks are a daily threat even though violence is down.  US and Iraqi forces killed 11 suspected insurgents and detained 44 others in a number of raids targeting AQI in central and northern Iraq, the U.S. military said.  Iraqi forces fighting oil theft have been working to recruit young men from tribes that long have been aiding the smugglers, the country's oil minister told CNN.

HUGO, the Cat of 1000 Faces!

MONKEY & CROC THIEF becomes a hero down under.

HIGH-JUMPING COW absolves farmers in lawsuit.

PETS can now get restraining orders in Wisconsin.  Farm animals still vulnerable.

DEXTER the LABRADOR plunged over the edge of a 115ft cliff and landed unharmed in the sea below.

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Dean & Britta, Big Dipper, Bon Iver, Croc taunt   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Thursday, March 06, 2008 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: Karl

Karl

DEAN & BRITTA are premiering the video for "You Turn My Head Around" at the 'Gum.

GNARLS BARKLEY: The new video for "Run," which ran here on Tuesday is barred from MTV for the moment, because parts of the clip have strobe effects, which caused the clip to fail the Harding Test -- a guideline established to prevent TV images from triggering epileptic seizures.  Danger Mouse tells Billboard he's hopeful the situation can be resolved shortly.

BIG DIPPER:  The 3-CD anthology blurbed here in November is streaming now via Merge Records.

THE OLD 97s will release a new album Blame It On Gravity in May -- the band's first LP in four years.  You can stream the single via 97sSpace.

R.E.M. guitarist Peter Buck talks to Filter about the band's live mentality, where they're going on the new record, and why he's so excited for us to hear it.  SPIN's review claims that "Accelerate will be rightfully championed as the defibrillator that shocked a once-great band back to its senses."

PAVEMENT:  Reunion quite possible, but not imminent.

METRO ditching Ticketmaster even made Brooklyn Vegan.

BON IVER has posted a video for "The Wolves (Act I and II)."  Not my favorite track from the album, but a nice wintry clip.

STATE of the INDUSTRY:  For the first time last year, nearly half of all teenagers bought no compact discs, a dramatic increase from 2006, according to a new report.  The illegal sharing of music online continued to soar in 2007, but legal downloading also seems to be picking up steam.  Meanwhile, a US District Court in Connecticut ruled last month that making copyrighted works available on the Internet does not, by itself, constitute copyright infringement.

TAPES 'N' TAPES is streaming their upcoming album from their website until noon today.  Good buzz for it at Stereogum

WHITE HINTERLAND:  Singer-songwriter Casey Dienel stopped by the Bryant Park Project for an audio and video segment, playing and talking about making the transition from solo artist to bandleader, struggling with nerves as a performer, and watching people disassemble a giant whale that had washed up on the beach near her hometown.

ST. VINCENT:  Annie Clark talks to Pitchfork about touring, blogging, shooting video for La Blogotheque, her time in the Polyphonic Spree, the making of Marry Me, and what's next on her docket.  She tells the Boston Globe that she "got a taste for experimental awesomeness."

LILY ALLEN is undergoing treatment for depression at a top private clinic.

PATRICK SWAYZE has been diagnosed with pancreatic cancer and might only have weeks to live, a rep for the star said Wednesday.  The average life expectancy is six to nine months, with only 4 percent of patients living more than five years.

BRITNEY SPEARS' conservatorship has been extended through July 31, 2008.

KEANU REEVES & PARKER POSEY were spotted looking very cozy at swanky L.A. hotel the Chateau Marmont.  A source tells OK! magazine: "It was probably the oddest couple I've ever seen."  That part I could believe.

JUSTIN TIMBERLAKE & JESSICA BIEL were spotted together in the Big Easy, so she must not buy those infidelity rumors.

MATTHEW McCONAUGHEY, rarely seen wearing a shirt, is developing his own line of swim apparel.

LINDSAY LOHAN is getting ready to start shooting the comedy Ye Olde Times with Jack Black and David Arquette -- and recording for Motown?

HARRY POTTER actor Daniel Radcliffe is being protected by four former SAS bodyguards after he received a death threat from a stalker.

WHITNEY HOUSTON is set to earn £1.4 million ($3 million) to perform at a London charity event.

STEVEN SPIELBERG is reportedly developing a new social network where people can talk about their encounters with the paranormal and extraterrestrial.  I thought that was the Art Bell show, but maybe it will be viral marketing for some new movie project.

BRAD BIRD, director of The Incredibles and the Oscar-winning Ratatuille, is directing Pixar's first live-action flick -- 1906, based on the book about the legendary San Francisco earthquake.

JACK NICHOLSON talked to MTV about his viral Hillary Clinton endorsement clip, a mash-up of memorable moments from the three-time Oscar winner's career.  EQUAL TIME:  A Barack Obama backer also mashes Jack. (NSFW)

THE UNITED NATIONS blasts the lenient treatment of cocaine-abusing celebrities, who are glamorizing the use of narcotics and encouraging more young people to use illegal substances.  The report also expressed concerns on rising opium production in Afghanistan.

IRAN:  The US challenged Iran to end its state of nuclear denial and explain why it had diagrams showing how to shape fissile uranium into the shape of warheads and other experiments linked to atomic arms research.  Britain, France and Germany - the three European nations at the forefront of attempts to engage Iran on its nuclear program - also urged Iran to bow to international demands, or face more penalties.  The British government said yesterday that Tehran could still be developing a nuclear weapon, and called into question a key US intelligence finding that work on building a bomb had stopped in 2003.  Pres. Ahmadinejad said Iran will only talk to the IAEA about its nuclear program, a statement that could rule out new negotiations with Europe.

IRAQ:  The government is refusing to execute the Saddam Hussein henchman and cousin known as "Chemical Ali" unless the executions of two other Saddam associates also are approved.  The Washington Times covers the thousands of military transition teams teaching Iraqi army units combat tactics, operational planning and logistics.  The top two US officials in Iraq said this week that Iran was still training Iraqi Shiite Muslim militias, in violation of its promises to Iraqi leaders.

DO NOT waive bait at the passing crocodile, moron.

EVE the ONE-LEGGED CHCKEN is getting surgery and radiotherapy to try to save the remaining drumstick.

A 150-LB TORTOISE found wandering around a residential neighborhood in Tracy, CA is claimed by its owner.

COWS stare unamazed as they become California's most alternative new energy source.  Meanwhile, in Rogers, Arkansas, the police are investigating whether a cow was udderly stunned by one of their taser-wielding officers.

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Destroyer, Felice Bros, Kate Nash & Billy Bragg, Mini-pigs   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Wednesday, March 05, 2008 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: Karl

Karl

 

BRENDAN BENSON is the sound of the new iPod Touch commercial.  It put me in the mood for  "Tiny Spark," "Metarie," "Spit It Out" and "Cold Hands, Warm Heart."

ON THE PITCHFORK:  I want my Pitchfork.tv!  The beta of the online, on-demand indie-music channel will include original mini-documentaries, secret rooftop and basement sessions, full concerts, exclusive interviews, and a carefully curated selection of music videos.

GARY LOURIS stopped by the World Cafe for a chat and mini-set you can stream on demand via NPR.  Louris is also interviewed by Luftmensch at MOKB.

ROCK OF PAGES:  Still turning.  Bullz-eye lists 45 books for the literate music fan (including, yes, Cash by Johnny Cash).  There is also a celebrity list in which Michael Azerrad (author of the excellent Our Band Could Be Your Life) picks the equally excellent Rock and the Pop Narcotic, by Joe Carducci.

DESTROYER:  You can stream the upcoming Trouble In Dreams LP in advance via Merge Records.

LED ZEPPELIN:  Robert Plant has turned down an extra £100 million fortune to get the Led out on a world tour, in favor of touring with Alison Krauss.  Folks think this may scotch all hope of a tour, but I wouldn't be too sure about that.

KATE NASH & BILLY BRAGG played a medley of her "Foundation" and (mostly) his classic "New England" at the 2008 Shockwaves NME Awards.  There is some Profanity.

BAUHAUS:  Twenty-five years after their last record, the Godfathers of Goth are releasing a new album, Go Away White. You can stream a Day to Day segment, plus songs from the LP, on demand via NPR.

BEATLE BOB, the gangly, 55-year-old overgrown adolescent who be the world's only full-time concertgoer, is profiled by the Associated Press.  His current streak dates to Christmas Eve 1996;.that's more than 4,075 shows.  The story mentions both the online petition and website imploring Beatle Bob to sit down, and the upcoming documentary "Superfan: The Lies, Legend and Life of Beatle Bob."

THE FELICE BROTHERS:  Wilmington, NC's Star News reports that "the reason these boys are starting to get so much attention ain't because they kind of sound like Dylan sometimes. Rather, it's because they play a familiar and traditional style of music in a way that's fresh and exhilaratingly new."  You can stream a few tracks from their debut at FeliceSpace.

KEITH RICHARDS, LORD of the UNDEAD, is the "new" face of Louis Vuitton.  Past subjects include Steffi Graf and Andre Agassi, Catherine Deneuve, and former USSR leader Mikhail Gorbachev.

BRITNEY SPEARS has again ignited pregnancy rumors after she was spotted leaving a medical centre with her father Jamie in LA yesterday.  Meanwhile, former pal Osama "Sam" Lutfi is fighting the restraining order against him and may be trying to get the pop wreck to testify on his behalf, according to the uber-reliable News of the World.

THE SIMPSONS:  Ashlee was sounding even more dazed and confused than usual during a radio interview yesterday, though her rep claims she was just "tired."  Meanwhile, at Monday's Cosmopolitan Fun Fearless Male of the Year Awards, Tony Romo was honored alongside Jessica Simpson's ex John Mayer and rumored former boyfriend Dane Cook.  The Dallas QB quipped: "I guess you date Jessica Simpson, that makes you fearless!"

KIRSTEN DUNST becomes the latest celeb to hook up with some dude in rehab.

THE FRENCH HOTEL:  The "Guru" that has supposedly changed her life is actually a Hollywood actor.  I'm shocked.

REESE WITHERSPOON has lent her star power to the UN global campaign to end violence against women, pitching a fund-raising drive by US cosmetics giant Avon for that purpose.  Gyllenspoon reportedly enjoyed a romantic evening out with friends at New York City restaurant Prune Sunday night.

FUNNY GIRLS:  Vanity Fair's new cover story asks, "Who Says Women Aren't Funny?" (A: It was Christopher Hitchens, writing in Vanity Fair last year.)  The mag also has a behind-the-scenes video for the Annie Leibovitz photo shoot.

MARY-KATE OLSEN is getting death threats from fans of the late Heath Ledger, as well as some awful plastic surgery.

ANNA NICOLE SMITH IS STILL DEAD, but her 18-month-old daughter Dannielynn finally was declared the sole heir to the former Playmate's estate.

LISA MARIE PRESLEY looks to be entering her own jumpsuit phase.

ELIZABETH HURLEY was accused of working her maid almost 'round the clock for as little as 2.50/hr.  The maid withdrew her claims after she was given a five-figure settlement.

HORTON HEARS A WHO:  You can watch the trailer and clips from the Dr. Seuss adaptation at Yahoo! Movies.

GHOSTBUSTERS:  Who you gonna call?

WAR in SOUTH AMERICA?  Colombia said on Tuesday that FARC rebels had been planning to make a "dirty bomb" with radioactive material, threatening the entire Latin American region.  Bogota has already accused Venezuelan Pres. Hugo Chavez of funding the FARC guerrillas, after Colombian forces crossed into Ecuador and killed a senior rebel commander on Saturday, sparking troop movements and warnings of war.  Hundreds of Venezuelan troops deployed for the Colombian border on Tuesday under orders from President Hugo Chavez, who is sending about 9,000 soldiers to the frontier.

THE NETHERLANDS:  Protesters already have torched Dutch flags in Afghanistan ahead of a new Dutch film portraying Islam's holy book as a "fascist" text that incites violence and preaches the oppression of women and homosexuals.  A Dutch Cabinet minister postponed his trip to Somalia on Friday due to "specific threats" linked to the film, and the Dutch government has urged lawmaker Geert Wilders to scrap his film for the safety of its citizens abroad.

IRAQ:  A three-judge panel dropped charges against two former high-ranking Shiite government officials accused of using the Health Ministry to run death squads and enrich themselves  - a decision that shook up Sunnis and troubled some Shiites as well.  Feeding doubt about the trial's fairness, many of the prosecution's witnesses had been intimidated and ultimately refused to appear in court.  Michael J. Totten blogs continuing mop-up and clean-up operations in Fallujah.  Entifadh Qanbar, an Iraqi politician and ex-spokesman of the Iraqi National Congress, takes you on a tour of AQI torture facilities, replete with blowtorches, saws, drills, knives, weapons, masks, and handcuffs.

MINIATURE PIGS: Pets of the Future!  More awww...some pics at the link.

TREACLE the TAWNY OWL loves to hop on the handlebars of a bike and go for rides with Staffordshire wildlife center owner Jenny Smith.  Pic at the link.

AND NOW FOR SOMETHING COMPLETELY DIFFERENT:  British marine experts have found what they claim is a world first -- a six-legged octopus, or "hexapus," whom they have christened Henry.

DO NOT taunt the rhino!  The San Francisco Zoo has stepped up its warnings against harassment of animals after the Christmas Day tiger attack that left one young man dead and two others injured.

ANTI-SHARK DEVICE eaten by a Great White.  What say you, Police Chief Brody? (nsfw)

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