April 27, 2004

"You lost more than that in my back seat." - Bon Jovi

What the hell, here is a new MP3. This is an astonishingly great cover of Jovi's "Never Say Goodbye," perpetrated by one Jeff Stern, a.k.a. Mr. Self Help. Jeff recorded this, so far as I remember, whilst in Olympia, WA. He recorded a bunch of songs to dictaphone and sent the cassette to The Broken Washing Machine, Mr. Obb. The Obbinator loaned the cassette to me in 97. The rest is history. Anyhoo, Stern has a crazy sense of humour, and the fact that this song is sung in such a monotone deadpan can be extremely funny while also underscoring in the obverse some of the heartbreaking sentimentality that lay below the surface of the pop metal power ballad original. So here it is, a man, a casio and a dream. Jeff Stern's "Never Say Goodbye."
"Let's not talk today, words just get in the way."-Versus

So everybody has been pimping this fantastic Courtney Love interview, but if you haven't actually clicked through and read it, you are definitely missing out. So go ahead. Do it. We'll be waiting for you here when you get back.

Fluxblog has been pimping a lot of great music lately, so you should go check that out, too.

As promised, Junkmedia has returned. While it has been down I have been getting kind of hooked on ILM, the ultimate outpost of music snootery. There is a real interesting look at Pitchforkmedia's ratings system today, including the opinionz of some 4K writers. Go check it out.

I am planning on letting my subscription to XLR8R magazine run out. Tho this month's edition comes with a CD sampler featuring Lali Puna, Colleen, Slicker and Telefon Tel Aviv. That is pretty damn awesome. I can't wait to hear the tracks. Which leads me to a discussion of all the stuff I have coming in the mail...

Lali Puna's Faking The Books and Les Savy Fav's Inches should be hitting my inbox at work soon. As should Versus' The Stars Are Insane. I am VERY excited about the Versus record. It is one of the first indie releases I ever got -- "got" meaning taped from the radio station at Villanova University, where I dj'd the summer after sophomore year in college, in between Bucknell and Wesleyan. The album is wall-to-wall rock and roll music, almost every song is rad. Anyway, I have been tracking down these early and usually out of print releases that I have only had on tape so I can upgrade and listen in revery to the music once more -- in the new condo the tapes are in beer boxes in the basement three stories down, so I am not likely to really go down there for something unless it is absolutely imperative. Anyway, the Les Savy Fav record should be cool, too, because it comes with a bonus DVD. I don't remember what's on it, but hey, free picture disc thingy that makes noises and pictures on my light box. Cool!

Lopez and I are trying out Netflix. Large-Hearted Boy posted some funny musings about your NetFlix list being the measure of hipness in NYC or or somewhere like that. We have received our three movies, but so far have only watched about 25 minutes of one of them so far, the Bob Dylan documentary Don't Look Back. The film is kind of boring. I think we'll skip the rest of it.

Right now Lopez has Gilmore Girls on the television set. Beleive it or not, Sebastian Bach from the metal band (erstwhile) is in the show, I shit you not. It is really funny. He is playing in a band with a bunch of 18 year olds in the show. And he works in a sandwich shop. I don't know it is just really funny. The Sebastian Bach part that is -- the show sort of bites.

Finally, the New York Times has a very interesting article about a Ramones documentary that may or may not see the light of day. I am sure cooler people than me knew this, but apparently the members of the band hated eachother, and Joey and Johnny didn't talk for like 17 years. They just played together on stage. How whacked is that? [ADDENDUM: The Good Doctor points out the following: "Johnny married Joey's girlfriend, yes, but also Joey was a die-hard liberal and Johnny remains a die-hard hawk Republican, who once said to me, 'Foreigners just refuse to acknowledge American superiority.' Johnny also once said, not to me, but in my presence, that he does not like music and is only interested in baseball."]

Anyhoo. That is all.

April 25, 2004

"This feels like yesterday." - Lefty's Deceiver

Hola conquistadors. The dishwasher hums against the other side of the guest room wall. The pot rack is assembled and waits to be screwed to the wall. All the rooms are somewhat together save for the guest room and the dining room. But we still entertained last evening. It is nice to be able to fit 6 people in the living room. We certainly couldn't fit any more, but 6 is pretty good.

I don't know why, but I am more interested, perhaps even excited, about the forthcoming Cure record. Perhaps because I have been turned onto a lot of recent live recordings online, which has revived my appreciation for the album Wish. I am still considering the new B-sides comp. I just can't be sure if there is anything more there that I would be interested in, as Dube already previously hunted down the B-sides from the cassette version of Staring at the Sea for me years ago. So still I ponder.

Back in the halcyon days of the late 80s and early 90s I used to be able to rely on Spin magazine to turn me onto stuff that was exceptional, that I really had no business knowing about at such a young age. So when the Feelies' Only Life came out, I bought it and became indoctrinated into their coolness. I never got into them on the sort of uber nerd level of many of the other bands I discovered at the same time. As a result there were quite a few releases of theirs I didn't know about. Fortunately for me the blog Mystical Beast offered a primer the other day.

I was minding my own business last weekend trying to muster the strength to get out of bed to make coffee when I was treated to a performance by Hanson on the Today show. Yeah, the Mmmmmmm... Bop guys. Well the tune I heard, besides being a little to similar to the aforementioned number, was pretty darn good. Word on the street is these guys have gone indie (or got dropped, to-may-toe, to-mah-toe) and worked with a lot of great writers including Matthew Sweet. Their Launch bio spells it all out. Anyway, the props have started flowing in, just like they did when Hall & Oates got back together recently. Wierd. But I'll be interested to hear what else is on the record once it hits the commercial rock radio (and assuming I ever turn the commercial rock radio on).

The MAN is apparently blasting AC/DC at Iraquis in an effort to instill fear and mayhem into their mortal souls. Apparently they used to do the same thing with Metallica, but Lars et al got pissed about it. It is kind of strange how the word "Iraquis" is so close to the word "Iraquois." Anyhoo...

Junkmedia is back online and promising new content tomorrow, including an Iron & Wine interview, which sounds pretty hot. Hopefully these new servers work gooder and are less badder.

I have plenty else to remark on, perhaps a little later on. That is all.

April 15, 2004

"You've got a nerve to be calling my number." - The Walkmen

So the move is 95% complete. Well, 90%. The landline phone is still all messed up and there are other issues with the accoutrements of the condo, but in terms of possessions, I'd say we are 98% of the way there. That ain't so bad. The condo is growing on me. For the first few days after the move we were just overwhelmed by the sheer volume of our detritus. But as we slowly get things situated, things are starting to look pretty good. As my homies in WPRS used to say even tho we were several hundred miles apart during college, you should try to stop by.

That shit about Wierd Al Yankovic is a shame. It is hard for me to pinpoint why that may or may not be more of a shame than, say, that twin sister getting killed in Iraq, or anybody getting killed anywhere for anything. But his reported comments in the lowly Metro publication (and here, in the SJMN, a real publication) struck a chord. Maybe it is the sad clown archetype thing. Whatever.

As usual, March and April have been gangbusters for scorching hot rock and roll shows in Cambridge and Boston. Of course I haven't see any of them. Maybe later this month. I did see the Shins and hear New Pornographers on Lopez's favorite Tuesday night show, Gilmore Girls, the other night (ably blogged about here at the very good Big Ticket). Who would have thought that Lopez's mainstream TV interests and my indie music interests would ever merge. That is a strange thing.

Also good is the Royal City video and the live Iron & Wine cuts pointed to by The Catbird Seat. Check that stuff out. I saw Royal City headline a Trouble With Sweeney date me and Logie went to check out 'cause Rob V. was hitting the skins for Sweeney. A first-rate Canadian rock ensemble, is the Royal City. Finally, Large-Hearted Boy is linking to a bootleg of the first Pixies reunion show. I don't feel like going to the trouble of checking it out myself, but email if you do and it is any good.

I've never really gotten Sleater-Kinney and I was glad to see Clap Clap take a shot at them here. Lighten up, nerditas. And stop yelling at me.

Junkmedia has been up and down and up and now down again. Server issues. Ben the editor is on tour with his hot rock ensemble the Mobius Band, so I don't know how many updates it would have been getting nohow.

So I downloaded the new Blonde Redhead from the ITunes, and while it is good, it hasn't really sunk in on me yet. Currently I am closing in on my goal of listening to every single thing on my IPod at least once. Using a Smart Playlist that just cues up stuff that has never been heard before, so far I have listened to about 3150 of the 3200 songs on there. Once I get settled in here at the condo I will start ripping stuff again.

Alright, I guess I got nothing else. More when we are settled. Anyone wanna buy a PA? Drafting table?

That is all.