Tuesday, April 29, 2008

project funway.

New thing alert:


...we'll see how this comes along.

(Suggestions welcome, I want to make this flow smoothly, so don't be saying "Hows about some Daft Punk?" when it's 80's electro time...not cool/acceptable.)


Wednesday, March 5, 2008

surely it's the half.

Note: This was supposed to be up like six days ago, but my computer + blogger are not on the same wavelength right now. Bummer.

OK, so one and a half jams today! Frighteningly different ones at that.

Clipse & The Re-Up Gang + Wire.

From 1977's classic Pink Flag we have "Field Day." At 28 seconds, it does not really even qualify as a half-jam, more like an extended chorus or something. Regardless, it's a brilliant song that you will want to replay about four times in a row. Almost two minutes if you add it up.

Wire - Field Day

Next up we have the main course. Off of the third installment in their We Got It 4 Cheap mixtape series, I present The Re-Up Gang going hard over a classic Swizz Beatz production, "Scenario 2000."

They call it "Scenario 2008" for reasons that should be quite obvious.

The entire mixtape can be obtained here. I don't think that I can physically or metaphorically recommend anything as much as I do this. Pretty much my favorite dudes ever at this moment in time.

"Underhand pitch like little league in Japan."

Clipse & The Re-Up Gang - Scenario 2008

Friday, February 22, 2008


I've been a bastard to this damned blog.

Excuse me.

While not writing, I have been working, playing and just generally trying to make things happen (albeit very slowly and deliberately.)

In the mean time, listen to this Felt song. They played it at Smiths night last Sunday and I got hyped.

Google Image Search result for the word 'euphoria' - it's called "Gals Experiencing euphoria!"

Felling hyped shouldn't really apply to this one, but it sort of made perfect sense within that context and well...I don't know really, just a great love song about letting someone in I suppose.

Felt - Sunlight Bathed The Golden Glow

Sunday, February 3, 2008

movement starter.

In terms of new things, this is easily the standout of the year so far. Insanely danceable and accompanied by a beautiful melody & vocal take, this track is a stunner.

The only other thing that is on its level, also happens to be on the same label. DFA are already having a fantastic year, and I don't really see them slowing down. Ed Banger is pretty much deaded, coincidentally.

I only know a few things about Hercules & Love Affair and today's selection "Blind:"

-Antony (from Antony & The Johnsons) is behind the vocal on "Blind"

-Antony will provide five (or four?) more vocals for the upcoming debut album by H & LA

-Hercules & Love Affair is only one dude, but there are two people in the picture below. Huh??
...yeah, that's pretty much it.

Hercules & Love Affair ft. Antony - Blind (Hercules' Club Mix)

Tuesday, January 29, 2008


When you have a grand idea, it is probably best that you jot it down and from there, fill out the ideas and such with insightful and carefully though out observations.

I did not do that with the aforementioned post on the nature of love and their domineering role within the canon of pop songs. Instead, I thought of a long-winded theory whils
t on the train, and just a promptly forgot it. Boo hoo.

So, instead of giving you a new jam to fawn over, I'll (not) compensate by Year-Ending a you with a list of a few films that I enjoyed this year.

(Full disclosure: I have not seen The Diving Bell & the Butterfly, The Savages, Walk hard: The Dewey Cox Story, Lars & The Real Girl, Ratatouille, Persepolis or the second half of I'm Not There. They might have appeared on my list, or not. Who knows?)

(You should know what to do with the links.)

Released in 2007:

1. There Will Be Blood

based on Upton Sinclair's novel
written & directed by Paul Thomas Anderson

This is without question, one of the best film I'll ever have the privilege of being alive for. Everybody is sucking Javier Bardem off for No Country, but I think that the one-two combination of Daniel Day-Lewis' Daniel Plainview and Paul Dano's Eli Sunday are easily amongst the most frightening characters ever presented on celluloid. They embody greed, malice, rage, avarice and most of all, the pure, unadulterated hate for human beings. Misanthropy is not even strong enough of a word for what Plainview has in his cold black heart.

Paul Thomas Anderson has made a masterpiece in the truest sense of the word. There are themes in this work that are very clear, but not super-overtly and never cheaply mined for an audience's sympathy. Look no further than the actions and words of the characters. The consequences are dire and yet make complete sense.

2. Superbad

written by Seth Rogen & Evan Goldbeg

directed by Greg Mottola

I was on the train the other day and heard a guy and girl talk about this movie. The girl said something to effect of, "I liked it OK, but it was such a boy movie. I mean, it was alright and everything but, it was so boy funny."

Fuck that girl. This is everyone funny. I believe that her real problem is that she's never had a best friend. No, not a really good friend or even a "BFF," but a true blue absolute best friend. If you have ever had one of those, then you should be crying a little at the end of this fil
m. The whole thing is essentially about the realization that the crutch that is a best friend is suddenly being pulled out from under you for the crutch that is a girlfriend and how that sort of fucks you up for a while. Think about it, if you have a girl or boyfriend, how do much do you talk to your best friends? And when you don't...? Exactly.

3. Zodiac

written by James Vanderbilt, based on the book by Robert Graysmith

directed by David Fincher

I can't really tell you exactly why I liked this film as much as I did. I mean, I don't really love cop movies more than the next guy, or crime investigation films either for that matter. I think that anybody could have played Jake Gyllenhaal's role and the joint is like thirty minutes longer than it really should be.

Oh, I forgot, it's because David Fincher took what was essentially a crime film about a famous murderer (who we, coincidentally, know for a fact hasn't even been caught in 30+ years) not boring, but fascinating. The period detail, use of music and the fact that the cast is stellar are also why this one works so well.

4. No Country For Old Men

adapted from the novel by Cormac McCarthy
written for the screen & directed by The Cohen Brothers

This is the most thrillingest thriller of the year that (unless you've read the book,) you don't know the ending to. Also, the sound design is marvelous. The direction is filled with tension enough as is, but the aural side is what really gets it to its true edge-of-your-seat heights.

Additionally, Josh Brolin really is the highlight for me here. He perfectly plays a guy who really shouldn't be as smart as he is and in doing so, creates someone that you can really root for.

Blame Cormac McCarthy for then ending if you didn't like it. I personally didn't mind not seeing exactly what happened. All the shooting in the first two thirds terrified me. Having a few less crackling gunshots in my ears was fine by me.

5. Control

adapted from Deborah Cutis' autobiography "Touching From A Distance"
written for the screen Matt Greenhalgh
directed by Anton Corbijn

This is how you make a biopic. Beautifully shot, expertly executed live performances, and a truly compelling lead performance, with spot on work by all supporting actors.

6. The Darjeeling Limited

written by Wes Anderson, Roman Coppola & Jason Schwartzman
directed by Wes Anderson

This is Wes being Wes. That is absolutely fine by me. Although it felt more compact than anything else he's done, there is a lot to chew on in this funny, sad and ultimately touching film.

Think about the tiger and then get back to me.

7. Knocked Up

written & directed by Judd Apatow

This film is hilarious because of everybody but Seth Rogen and Katherine Heigl. Not that they are bad by any means, it's just that the roommates, Paul Rudd, the little girls, the bouncer and most importantly Leslie Mann are just that much funnier. The relationship stuff is pretty well executed too. Almost too truly for a Hollywood film.

8. Michael Clayton

written & directed by Tony Gilroy

Ever since Dogville I've been sort of obsessed by films that end in a satisfying manner. There Will Be Blood and Michael Clayton are this years dual winners of the Lars Von Trier Prize for Incredible Endings.

The performances in this film are all great, but the writer/director Tony Gilroy is the real show-off in this one, dispaying his apt sense of mood and suspense, he has created a phenomenal directorial debut. And once again, that ending showdown between George Clooney and Tilda Swinton's characters is one for the ages.

9. Eastern Promises

written by Steven Knight
directed by David Cronenberg

Viggo is incredible and all, but almost no love is being shown for the scene/film stealer Vincent Cassel.
His work here is great. The character that he shapes is despicable, yet you feel pity for him. He is a misogynist male chauvinist with obvious homosexual tendencies and a charmingly deplorable human being.

The twist in the last third is actually surprising and well done. Cronenberg doing fine work here. I think that he should do another one with Viggo and this character, interesting things could come of that.

10. Before The Devil Knows You're Dead

written by Kelly Masterson
directed by Sidney Lumet

This is another fine crime/heist film. Another one that gets it right. I agree with my friend Bob about the out-of-sequence bit being a bit lame, but nonetheless, the acting and script really helped me see past the gimmick.

Phillip Seymour-Hoffman and Albert Finney doing exceptional work here. They both seem to be in pain or discomfort the entire time, which I find interesting to no end.

The Rest (2007):


Yes, I know exactly what is wrong with this film, (the extreme abundance of quirk and "hip" references, the oh so precious music, the glibness of just about every single adult character, Michael Cera being in it for only like 5 minutes, etc.) yet somehow I can honestly say that I sort of liked it. Enough to put it on this list. Not the other one though. Should this be nominated for Academy Awards against There Will Be Blood or No Country For Old Men? No way? But Atonement shouldn't be either, so whatever. At least I cared enough about Juno being with Michael Cera's character enough to be glad at the end. Keira Knightly and whats-his-face? Oh fuck off.

-The King Of Kong: A Fistful Of Quarters

Best frivolous documentary of the year, hands down.


Best serious documentary of the year. I fully support our troops and all, and I want them all to came home and I fell truly awful for the ones who have been slain or wounded.

That said, I will probably never step foot in Iraq, I know that it's all Bush's fault that they were sent there and the plight of the Iraqi people is nowhere near important to me (and millions of others) as not having to pay for health care. Michael Moore made a bipartisan film that shows how we are all fucked. That counts for something.

-Blades Of Glory

Hi-la-ri-ous. Everything out of Will Ferrell's mouth is gold in this one. Pure gold. Also, the chase between he and Will Arnett is genius.

Best old stuff/not released in 2007:

-Holy Mountain

Holy shit. Fucking incredible.

-Morvern Callar

Marvelous in every way. Best music usage ever? Top 3 easily.

-Paranoid Park

Go see it when it comes out. Gus is on a roll.

Saturday, January 26, 2008

on love songs.

I was on the train tonight and the song "Touch Too Much" by Hot Chip was on repeat in my mind.

I haven't been posting very much lately. Not for a lack of good music, no. To the contrary, the thing is, I've been listening to a wide array of music new and old. Various genres. The main things that I keep coming back to though are Panda Bear's Person Pitch, Clipse & The Re-Up Gang's We Got It 4 Cheap Volumes 1 & 2, and even more than anything else, (since probably The Strokes' Is This It all the way back in 2001) Hot Chip's new masterpiece (yes Masterpiece) Made In The Dark.

What is it about this, their third album, that is so great? I have a notion that it has to do with the amount of love that is spread throughout.

See, what the guys in Hot Chip have done on this latest album is mostly talk about the bittersweet time when, upon the verge of an inevitable break up, one looks back on a relationship and sees every incident that had led to the demise.

They do this over and over. Only a few of the songs sort of celebrate love. And even those tend to skew towards melancholy ("In The Privacy Of Our Love," "Ready For The Floor.")

By the way, did I mention that the ratio of slow songs to dance-able ones is something like 1:5?

Yes, they made a sad love song album that won't let you stop dancing for most of it's run time. What the fuck?!

You must buy this when it comes out in a couple of weeks (February 5, to be exact.)

Before I post a long-winded essay on pop music and the subject of love (one equals the other is the whole gist...) her is the jam to convince you to support Made In The Dark. A song about the two opposing sides of love and how they resemble a (childish) pastime: wrestling.

Hot Chip - Wrestlers

Wednesday, January 23, 2008


Hello pals. Back with another sporadic jam. This comes from someone not entirely unlike Valerie Dore.
An Italo/scary synth-pop casualty, Nancy Nova was the odd, pitch-shifted voice behind today's banger "The Force."

This song is a concoction primarily made up of:

1. A creepy voice at the very beginning saying "Chorus..."
2. ...followed by a Greek chorus! Chanting along spookilly (sic?,) no less.
3. A super killer bass line
4. All over the place synth & computerized organs
5. One of my cheesy weaknesses, an over-pitched main vocal.

What these things lead to is a jam to end all forgotten Italo/synth jams, here, in it's full seven and a half minute glory...

Nancy Nova - The Force (Original Mix)

Sunday, January 13, 2008

triumphant return.

Back like cooked crack with new jams. We start off 2008 with a track off of an album that truly surprised me. I Picked up Mazarati's debut album in Kim's for something like $7.00. The same day, I had picked up a couple of Wings lps, some ELO, Test-Icicles only album (on vinyl no less) and a Squeeze singles compilation (more on that in another post.) Needless to say I thought that the Mazarati album would probably have one or two solid jams with a bunch of band faux-Prince filler. Not the case at all, actually.

Best album of the lot. From front to back all golden nuggets. The first track on the lp is what I offer today. This one is the extended mix, about four minutes longer and double the amount of pure sex appeal.

It is also handy to keep in mind that they looked like this:

Not gay at all.

Mazarati - Players Ball