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And they'd FEAST! FEAST! FEAST! FEAST!   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Wednesday, December 24, 2008 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: Karl



...with AIMEE MANN's CHRISTMAS CAROL (profanity warnings): Part One has your Scrooge-y set-up with Michael Penn. Part Two features The Office's John Krasinski. Part Three has Michael Cera. Part Four has John C. Reilly.

A CHARLIE BROWN CHRISTMAS:  Sure, Charlie Brown, I can tell you what Christmas is all about.  Mental Floss has "The Real Story Behind A Charlie Brown Christmas (and why it almost wasn't shown)."

THE POGUES:  It's not Christmas Eve in the drunk tank (or even St. Patrick's Day) without a "Fairytale of New York."

NORAD will be tracking Santa, per usual.

STEPHEN COLBERT & ELVIS COSTELLO: "There Are Much Worse Things to Believe In" makes NPR's Song of the Day

BILLY MACK: Because "Christmas Is All Around.".

THE FLAMING LIPS perform "White Christmas" as only they can.

SUPER FURRY ANIMALS: "The Keep That Keeps Giving."  Not to be confused with "The Gift," which is not Christmasey at all.

HOW THE GRINCH STOLE CHRISTMAS:  The real deal, not Jim Carrey.  Then he slunk to the ice box. He took the Whos' feast. He took the who pudding, he took the roast beast. He emptied the ice box as quick as a flash. Why, the Grinch even took the last can of who hash.  BONUS:  The late Phil Hartman hosted a documentary on the making of the cartoon classic.

DAVID BOWIE & BING CROSBY'S cross-generational duet o­n "Little Drummer Boy."

THE YEAR WITHOUT A SANTA CLAUS:  Many people believe human activity is causing global warming.  I blame Snow Miser and Heat Miser.

CHICAGO CHRISTMAS MEMORIES:  If you grew up in Chicago (and I suspect other places), the season is not complete without watching the short cartoons of "Hardrock, Coco & Joe" (a story fantastic, a story so queer), "Suzy Snowflake" and the jazzy version of "Frosty the Snowman."

THE BEATLES fan club messages for 1963, 1964, 1965, 1966, 1967, 1968 and 1969.

HOLIDAY BIN:  Your stocking stuffers -- from Richard Cheese to James Brown, from Louis Armstrong to Stephen Colbert, from Sufjan Stevens to Thurl Ravenscroft, Rosie Thomas, The Chesterfield Kings, Liz Phair, The Band and more  -- are streaming from the Pate page at the ol' HM.

IT'S A WONDERFUL LIFE: Pate even had a song titled "Rope Around The Moon," so watch the whole thing.  BONUS: Bailey backlash from warped, frustrated old people appears at the New York Times and Portfolio.

NOW SHOWING:  The wide Christmas releases are the Disney/Adam Sandler comedy Bedtime Stories, which is currently scoring 24 percent on the ol' Tomatometer; Marley and Me, which is currently scoring 37 percent; the Ton Cruise Nazi movie Valkyrie, which is scoring 59 percent; The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, scoring 75 percent; and The Spirit at 13 percent. Reviews are thin right now, so those numbers may change.   NOTE: MGM has doubled down on the promo budget for Valkyrie, and the Cruise camp went so far as to offer a screening for anyone at a radio station and their friends -- at the Cruise home, no less -- if only they'd "say 'nice things' about the movie," according to one source.

THE RAMONES:  "Merry Christmas, Baby (I Don't Want To Fight Tonight)."

RUDOLPH, THE RED-NOSED REINDEER:  Pull up an ice block and lend an ear!  Herbie wanted to be a dentistNTTAWWT.  BONUS:  The Rankin-Bass classic has inspired ads like this season's Apple ad, (and this one) and even more so last year's AFLAC commercial.

FESTIVUS:  For the rest of us.  Technically started yesterday, so I can be one of your grievances.

CLASSIC TV CHRISTMAS SPECIALS by the truckload, linked at WFMU.

NAT KING COLE:  His chestnuts are roasting.


2953 Reads

Noah & the Whale, Mt. Goats, Stereolab, Unclever Sheep   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Tuesday, December 23, 2008 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: Karl


OF MONTREAL played "An Eluardian Instance" for Dave last week, which was a pretty good week for Dave.

NOAH & THE WHALE do the four free songs thing for Daytrotter, one previously unreleased.

MOUNTAIN GOATS: John Darnielle has posted three old tracks (previously unreleased, afaik) with the hope you will donate five bucks to a charity or two.

STEREOLAB stopped by the World Cafe for a mini-set you can stream on demand via NPR.

BET YOU THINK THIS SONG IS ABOUT YOU: The Guardian profiles the real-life subjects of noted rock songs.

CHRIS ISAAK serves up "Blue Christmas" and "Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer" for a colorful Twofer Tuesday.

TOP TEN 2008 LISTS from a variety of alt-rockers queried by Filter.

2009: A look ahead at anticipated albums via Stereogum.

LEONARD COHEN is profiled in The Scotsman, including his time as a notorious womanizer.

WARNER MUSIC is yanking all of its clips from the Tube.

JACKO reportedly needs an emergency transplant operation to save his life from a rare lung condition, according to the author of a new biography of the singer.

AMY WINEHOUSE appears to be winning her battle against drugs as she looked the picture of health during a winter break in the sun.

BRITNEY SPEARS: Dad and brother Bryan get paid.

GUY RITCHIE: Madonna's futrure ex may have moved on to millionaire heiress Jemima Khan.

RUSSELL CROWE and director Ridley Scott may be feuding as the prepare to shoot "Nottingham," a revisionist version of the Robin Hood legend.

SAMANTHA RONSON: Being Lindsay Lohan's girlfriend may be lucrative, but it also may be exhausting and stressful.

THE FRENCH HOTEL burglary was captured on video, but the perp was wearing a mask.

BRADGELINA Collectors' Plates are on display at the Gallery of the Absurd.


IRAQ: Welcome to the first-ever public Christmas celebration in Baghdad, held Saturday and sponsored by the Iraqi Interior Ministry. Once thought to be infiltrated by death squads, the Ministry now is trying to root out sectarian violence -- as well as improve its PR image.  ALSO: The number of daily attacks in Iraq has dropped nearly 95 percent since last year; the country's murder rates have dropped below levels that existed before the start of US operations in Iraq. ALSO: Michael Portillo, a British journalist, broadcaster, former Conservative Party politician and Cabinet Minister, argues that Iraq shows Britain has lost the stomach for a fight.

DOG + SNOW = Crazy Delicious.


THE SQUIRREL THREAT: One can only imagine the plot that involves Pete the Purple Squirrel.

MICE suspected in deadly cat fire.

SHEEP without Harold turn out to be less than clever.

BREEDING OWLS defecate strategically, using their excrement to erect "No Trespassing" signs within their territories.

3170 Reads

Broken Social Scene, The Annuals, Springsteen, Goth Kittens   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Monday, December 22, 2008 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: Karl


BROKEN SOCIAL SCENE stopped by Dave's last week to play "Churches Under The Stairs" from Brendan Canning's "BSS Presents..." solo LP.

ANNUALS did the four free songs thing for Daytrotter.

THE 50 BEST ALBUMS of 2008: Pitchfork rolls out its list.

KEITH RICHARDS, Lord of the Undead, claims to have turned 65, when we all know its more like 1065.

U2 had a strange year.

BRUCE SPRINGSTEEN & the E STREET BAND told Paris Monday night that "Santa Claus Is Coming To Town."  But I still like the vintage video from Passaic, NJ in 1978.

RHETT MILLER talks to the Washington Times about The Old 97s, his solo work and the Internet era.

2008: The Year In Band Names, courtesy of The A.V. Club.

THE BODEANS: A 25+ year timeline, from the Wisconsin State Journal.

FLEET FOXES are profiled by The Age.

RICK RUBIN, once thought to be Sony's savior, is being offloaded to a side label.

WEEKEND BOX OFFICE: Yes Man wins the weekend with 18.1 million, followed by the debuts of Seven Pounds (16 million) and The Tale of Despereaux (10.5 million).  Even so, these numbers probably disappoint the studios that were hoping for Jim Carrey and Will Smith to play Santa this Christmas.  Yes Man opened about where Carrey's recent lackluster outings did, and Seven Pounds opened at the very low end of Will Smith's usual range.  Despereaux may be able to get some traction as the holidays' family flick.  The Day The Earth Stood Still dropped a whopping 67 percent to fourth place -- as Keanu might say, "Whoah." Four Christmases rounds out the Top Five, breaking the 100 million mark, with at least one more decent week coming.  Below the fold, the news is critics' darling Slumdog Millionaire jumping into the Top Ten at number eight, even though it's showing on only 589 screens.

THE FRENCH HOTEL wuz robbed to the tune of two million worth of jewelry and other belongings.

BRITNEY SPEARS reportedly has a new man in her life -- Good Charlotte's Benji Madden.  Spears' publicist denies the story.

JENNIFER ANISTON & JOHN MAYER were... wait for it... caught canoodling in New York City Thursday night.

MADONNA: Reportedly cavorting with a Brazilian model she met shooting an editorial layout for W magazine.

TARA REID entered rehab last week? Shocka.

MAJEL BARRETT RODDENBERRY, the widow of Star Trek creator Gene Roddenberry, has died at 76.

AFGHANISTAN: The Economist comtemplates "the next surge."

IRAQ: US troops captured a Hezbollah Brigades leader and two associates, and two Special Groups leaders and eight operatives during separate raids in Baghdad.

CHARLEY the CAT has cerebellar hypoplasia.  Raising awareness of a condition more amusing than serious, in hopes of saving others.

GOTH KITTENS sold on the Internet have aroused the ire of the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals.

JAPANESE GOBLIN SHARK ATTACK: Let's go to the video.  ALSO: Shark Commits Suicide on Waterslide.

PANDA DOG: Awww...some pics.

ONE HOT DOG survives 30 minutes in the Missouri River in subzero weather.

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Shindig Xmas, Brian Wilson, Mates of State, Cutout Bin, Nuclear Crocs   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Friday, December 19, 2008 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: Karl



...with SHINDIG CHRISTMAS '64! Part One includes The Beach Boys' "Dance, Dance, Dance," Bobby Sherman and Donna Loren singing "Keep on Searching," the Righteous Brothers doing "The Jerk" and an awesome milk commercial. Part Two includes Marvin Gaye with "How Sweet It Is To Be Loved By You" and Adam Faith with "Watch Your Step," plus Bobby Sherman singing "Sleigh Ride" and Adam Faith returning with "Santa Claus Is Back In Town."  In Part Three, Donna Loren returns with a Spector-esque, but rougher "Santa Claus is Coming to Town," and The Beach Boys deliver a set including "Little Saint Nick," "Monster Mash" (yes, really) "Papa Oom Mow Mow," and "Johnny B. Goode." Part Four brings Marvin Gaye with "Hitch Hike" and concludes with The Beach Boys on "We Three Kings."

BRIAN WILSON played the Warner Theatre in DC; you can stream the gig and an interview via NPR.

MATES OF STATE played Mountain Stage; you can stream the short set, which includes a cover of Jackson Browne's "These Days," via NPR. 

GLASVEGAS: James Allan talks about the Phil Spector influence and more with the Telegraph.

LONGWAVE stopped by The Current for a chat and mini-set you can stream on demand via MPR.

THE KINKS: "Father Christmas."

THE WORST SONG LYRICS of 2008, in a March Madness-style tournament at the Village Voice.

THE LILYWHITE SESSIONS: After a bit of a hiatus, Steve Lilywhite has produced mini-sets for both Mercury Rev and The Pretenders.

THE NATIONAL: Aaron Dessner talks future projects with Billboard.

CUTOUT BIN: From Vince Guaraldi to Nick Cave, from Cat Power to Looking Glass, from The Psychedelic Furs to The Hollies, plus TMBG, Jens Lekman, Them, The Who and more  -- this Friday's fortuitous finds can be jukeboxed or streamed separately via the Pate page at the ol' HM.

NOW SHOWING: This weekend's wide releases are Yes Man, which is currently scoring 36 percent on the ol' Tomatometer; The Tale of Despereaux, which is currently scoring 42 percent; and Seven Pounds, scoring 31 percent.

AWARDS SEASON: The Screen Actors' Guild nominations are announced; the L.A. Times has analysis. ALSO: New York magazine reviews nine Oscar hopefuls at once.

SCARLETT JOHANSSON is auctioning a used tissue for charity on eBay; the bids are in the thousands.

JEREMY PIVEN will abruptly end his run in Broadway's "Speed-the-Plow," claiming illness due to to a high mercury count. It has nothing to do with his seeming prima donna behavior on stage recently. Nosiree -- just ask Piven's doctor.

MARK RUFFALO's brother's death was ruled a homicide, after early speculation that Scott shot himself during a game of Russian roulette.


FERRIS BUELLER'S DAY OFF: A look inside the "Where Are They Now?" file.

THE WORST MOVIES of 2008, according to the A.V. Club.

STAR TREK: JJ Abrams talks to MTV about the reboot -- and fanboy expectations.

IRAQ: Up to 35 officials in the Iraqi Ministry of the Interior ranking as high as general have been arrested over the past three days with some of them accused of quietly working to reconstitute Saddam Hussein's Baath Party, according to senior security officials in Baghdad.

MOTHER & CHILD HIPPOS cavort at the Berlin Zoo. Awww...some pics and video at the link.

NUCLEAR CROCODILES: Has no one in Florida seen a Godzilla movie?

ANGRY MONKEYS turned on their cruel trainer and beat him with his own stick. Pic at the link.

PET HOARDING: Berlin officials say they have rescued 1500 parakeets from a two-room apartment.

THE TIGER TEMPLE: At a popular tourist attraction in Thailand, tigers live in harmony with monks. Video at the link.

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School of 7 Bells, Crooked Fingers, Mountain Goats, Death Metal Puppy   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Thursday, December 18, 2008 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: Karl


SCHOOL OF SEVEN BELLS get a feature plus tracks via NPR's Day to Day. They also kicked off a new series at the 'Gum with a video of "Caldo." And they have a set on The Interface.

CROOKED FINGERS does the four free songs thing for Daytrotter.

NEKO CASE: Piano Saver! Video of her recording her new album, Middle Cyclone, at the link.

YEAH YEAH YEAHS have a special holiday tune streaming at the moment.

THE BEST YULETIDE POP, according to the Telegraph.

THE MOUNTAIN GOATS frontman James Darnielle was backed by Superchunk's Jon Wurster on drums.for three Christmas covers -- including Chuck Berry's "Run, Run Rudolph" at last year's Trekky Records Christmas show.  It's Threefer Thursday -- like Twofer Tuesday, but it's one more.

THE SMITHS: Johnny Marr rubbishes reuinion rumors (again).

STEPHEN MALKMUS, otoh, leaves the door open for a Pavement reunion.

ANTHONY KLEIDIS, Red Hot Chili Peppers front man, narrowly escaped kidney failure.

R.E.M.: Mike Mills turned 50 yesterday.

MADONNA & GUY RITCHIE are slamming recent stories about their divorce settlement -- even though the source was Madge's US rep.

NICOLE KIDMAN has been warned by Aborigines who say she will not be able to have more children because she broke a sacred taboo by playing a didgeridoo on German television.

LINDSAY LOHAN: An overzealous fan was arrested yesterday after he tried to get around security at a Scottsdale nightclub in the hopes of getting close to La Lohan.

JENNIFER LOPEZ & MARC ANTHONY: Marriage at the "breaking point"?

GWYNETH PALTROW & CHRIS MARTIN are doing just fine, according to Paltrow's mom, Blythe Danner.

FLIGHT OF THE CONCHORDS: The Season 2 premiere is already online, well in advance of its official airdate.

JESSICA ALBA & JACK BLACK will star in a fake movie shown within the special post-SuperBowl episode of The Office.

TERROR in the UK: A British court convicted Bilal Abdulla for his role as the leader of a terror cell that attacked a nightclub and the Glasgow airport.

INDIA: A Lashkar-e-Taiba spokesman based out of Pakistan-held Kashmir vowed to continue to fight the Indians in the disputed territories and denied his group was behind the Mumbai attack. Indian intell confirmed calls made by terrorists during the Mumbai siege were made to senior Lashkar-e-Taiba operatives.

IRAQ: US forces may stay in the still-volatile city of Mosul beyond the June deadline for Americans to pull back to bases.

DEATH METAL PUPPY: Death metal is now cute ... or puppies are now scary.

SHARKS will be listening to Christmas pop songs as part of a scientific study in Scotland. Yes, really.

ERNEST the CAT has had his sight restored by contact lenses in what is believed to be a medical first.

GAY PENGUINS thrown out of their zoo colony for repeatedly stealing eggs have been given some of their own to look after following a protest by animal rights groups.

THREE BRITISH SCOUT LEADERS were forced to trek through jungle for five days after a hippopotamus capsized their canoe, ending a planned 2,500-mile river journey through Africa. I would have thought Scout leaders smart enough not to share a canoe with a hippo.

3590 Reads

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