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Showing posts from December, 2007

We're all refugees and we're all drifting like leaves

Perusing through Eric 's year-end list , I came upon this write-up for Bloc Party's A Weekend in the City : Back in January of 2007 I posted a Bloc Party track from this record and was swiftly asked to remove from my blog by someone in the band's camp. While I was cool with the request, it may have negatively colored my perception of this record that I've only recently begun to get into. This got me thinking about something I've never understood, but have written about before. However, there's a new perspective on this. Hence why I'm revisiting the subject. I'm very well aware of the uphill rig-a-ma-roll it takes to get people to pay attention to anything. Be it a record, movie, book, or show, it usually takes an amount of money and a lot of time trying to get the word out there. (The process of getting a song on the radio alone is a doozy.) In the case of a record, if a blogger wanted to share a song from it as an MP3, who would be hurt by the expos

Feliz Navidad

Regular blogging will resume after Christmas. Hope everybody has a good holiday. For now, here are some links to check out. Former Buzz DJ (who got me into a number of incredible bands back in high school/college) David Sadof now has a blog with the Houston Chronicle . Eric 's music-year end list is split up into four parts, complete with an MP3 from each album. The AV Club was asked about a certain movie that a reader didn't know its name, but this time, it was the one and only, Midnight Madness . Please, hold your applause, as Leo says. And finally, here's a repost of that DBU student playing Dragonforce's "Through the Fire and Flames" on Expert.

Why Did We Ever Meet?

Kudos to Jess at Idolator for posting the Promise Ring's video for "Why Did We Ever Meet?" as part of the "12 Days of 90s Emo." It's funny with the timing as I was editing (what I hope to be the final edit of) the Promise Ring chapter last night and the video was mentioned. Of course, when the video debuted on 120 Minutes has very special significance for me. I was a loyal 120 Minutes watcher my senior year of high school/freshman year of college. I'd tape it whether or not I stayed up and watched the whole thing. If I remember correctly, most of the show's playlist was dominated by British acts at the time. There was great stuff from Suede, Belle and Sebastian, Radiohead and the Verve, but the Promise Ring video really stuck out. And I really liked what I heard. Just a few weeks prior, I heard the word "emo" for the first time. I asked a couple of friends what emo was and they just grumbled at the mere mention of the word. These guys

Before I forget

Unlike previous year-end lists, I spent pretty much one afternoon thinking about all the records that rocked my world in 2007. In previous years, I spent a few days listing everything, whittled down the list, and then posted it. I don't think I left out any glaring omissions with this year's list, but I wanted to post a few things that have come to light since I posted my year-end list and read other people's lists. -------- Decent debut album where fanboys disassociated themselves from the band after it leaked online, thus putting the "fan" part into question Voxtrot - Voxtrot I dug Voxtrot's two self-released EPs and found their debut LP to be a logical step-up. Sounding like they had a little more time to work on the record, Voxtrot doesn't sound over-produced nor does it sound rushed. There are plenty of good tunes here, like "Firecracker," "Kid Gloves" and "Real Life Version." Strangely, hardcore fans seemed to j

Well, not really. After all, she did get together with George Peppard. I mean, Fred.

Enjoying Tasha's Book vs. Film co m par is ons for the AV Club and randomly reading the Wikipedia page for Moonraker last week, I was reminded of a fact of life: it's rare when a film adaptation of a book sticks closely to the book's story. I think it's very understandable when a movie tweaks certain things to work in a movie form, but when major tweaks are done -- tweaks to where the movie is almost nothing like the book -- I can't help but be annoyed. Far more insulting is when a new printing of a book carries a large circle or single-line header that says, "Now a major motion picture!" I understand this is just plain ol' marketing, but it's a kind of marketing that can create strange bedfellows. Moreover, two different stories that may contain certain similarities, but are both sold under the same name. A very timely case in point: I Am Legend . Richard Matheson's book has been credited as the source for such films as The Last Man On E

Movie favorites (and not-so-favorites) of 2007

Now for a similar look back at the movies I really enjoyed this year. Including movies released and not released this year, I watched a lot of stuff, mostly on DVD. Unlike the music list, I also included movies that frustrated the hell out of me. ------- Movies I actually saw in a movie theater Grindhouse Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix Into the Wild Southland Tales American Fork Grindhouse was totally worth seeing in the theater. Two great mini-movies with hilarious fake trailers made for a kick-ass experience. And it only cost $8. Yet praising it now seems to knocked aside by pundits because it didn't do so well at the box office. Tis an annoying shame by people who have been brainwashed by how box office receipts equate quality of film. Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix , Into the Wild and Southland Tales were movies meant to be first experienced on the big screen. I enjoyed them overall and took something positive away from them. I couldn't

Musical favorites of 2007

Once again this year, my list of musical favorites is not solely restricted to material released in this year. That said, I listened to a lot of stuff released this year. So, let's get right to it and then talk about non-2007 releases. --------- Albums that feature some killer songs, but I just didn't find the whole albums to be killer Fountains of Wayne - Traffic and Weather Bloc Party - A Weekend in the City Modest Mouse - We Were Dead Before the Ship Even Sank Modest Mouse's Good News for People Who Love Bad News and Bloc Party's Silent Alarm were my utmost favorite releases of 2004 and 2005, respectively. I wasn't expecting their follow-ups to really blow me away and well, they didn't. However, I'm glad I have songs like "Florida," "Dashboard," "I Still Remember," "Waiting for the 7.18" and "Sunday" in my iTunes. In regards to Fountains of Wayne's fourth proper album, the band sticks to th

12 Reasons

Before I divulge my favorite music and movies of the year, I figured I'd do an inventory of my year. Taking a cue from Py 's and J 's memes on Christmas, I'll do twelve entries here, mostly in regards to taking the good with the not-so-good. 1. The arrival of my nieces. Surrounded by love from their parents, grandparents, aunts and uncles, they truly are a blessing. On a side note, I look forward to introducing them to music as they grow up. No Dillinger Escape Plan just yet, but they won't have to endure any Raffi from me. 2. My first visit to see these nieces coincided with two major events: the completion of my first full draft of Post and probably one of the worst allergy attacks in recent memory. Literally as I finished up the draft, I came down with something. Oh, the timing of these sorts of things. 3. Hitting up South by Southwest for eight hours and having a ball. I couldn't argue with finding a $7 parking space right across the street from Emo'

A Marshmallow World

I don't know if I've had a different experience than you this holiday season, but I haven't been bombarded by Christmas music everywhere I go. Be it at the mall, big-box store or one of my favorite places to eat, not every song is of the yuletide variety. All of the Christmas gifts I purchased were bought in stores, but alas, the number of Christmas/holiday-centric songs seems less. I'm not complaining here; I'm just making an observation. I wonder though: has a backlash against wall-to-wall Christmas music been the reason for this? I'm not bringing all this up in fear that people hate Christmas or Christmas music; rather, I think it's how certain people don't want to hear Christmas music all the time. Personally, I like Christmas music, but prefer it to not hijack my regular playlist on my iPod or CD player. I think the key difference between being stuck in rush hour traffic listening to a radio station that's all Christmas music and being stuck i

Be Good to Yourself

Well, the rumors are no longer rumors: Journey now has a new lead singer. It's Arnel Pineda, the man rumored to be the one for a few weeks now, and not Patti Smyth, as previously rumored. Believe it or not, but Pineda is the seventh lead vocalist in the band's tenure. Supposedly the many , many live clips of him singing Journey covers helped him catch their attention.

Take your time, take your time, think, think, think

Stumbling upon this clip of future Dillinger Escape Plan drummer Gil Sharone guest-starring on Full House , I couldn't help but cringe. Not for Sharone or his scene partners John Stamos or Lori Loughlin; rather, the show itself. As someone who watched the show from the beginning almost to the end in its first run, I wonder why I watched this show in the first place. When I see it now, I find it incredibly unfunny and forced. Plus, I feel like Alvy Singer in that part in Annie Hall where he watches his friend put laugh tracks down on his hit show. He asks, "is there booing on there?" Instead of blocking out my reasons why, I think about an experience I had with some of my younger cousins earlier in the year. Watching a certain channel devoted to kids aged post-toddler to tween, I sat with them one afternoon watching unfunny show after unfunny show. That said, it kept my cousins from bouncing off the walls, so my aunt and uncle could get things done uninterrupted. Under

When Acting as a Particle

Though this policy has been in effect for the past six months, word came down today that all Universal artists may only have 90-second clips of their songs on their MySpace pages. Why MySpace is being singled out, I'm not sure, but "[t]he policy applies to any site where music can be embedded, except for Universal's own official sites, which still offer free on-demand streaming of certain complete songs." I don't know about you, but clips instead of full songs are a mixed-bag for me. Sometimes a 30-second clip can pique my interest. Sometimes they don't and I need to hear the full song. I say it depends on what's on the clip itself. If it was an epic Coheed and Cambria tune, I probably wouldn't be excited if the clip just had sound effects and feedback. If it was a short Ben Folds tune, I'd probably have an idea about whether I'd want to hear more. So, this all depends on the artist and the song. I recently took a listen to 30-second iTunes

Book update 12.03.07

With the spreading of the word of POST via its MySpace page , I'm not really surprised that a message board thread on it has now surfaced. The board is Viva La Vinyl, a place I had heard about, but had never checked out before. I had heard it was a prime location for whiners wishing I wrote the book they thought it should be, but so far, the complaints have been scarce. Even if complaints dominated the thread, I wouldn't care all that much. Since I liked it when Kevin Smith hopped onto his board to answer questions, I wanted to continue that kind of interaction. I've already logged on to answer questions and comments, no matter how ugly they may or may not get. It's all in the process of telling people about the project rather than keeping it a guarded secret. The current status of the book is this: -I've begun the final edit of the 220-page manuscript. That might sound like a short book, but it's not. One page in Word equals 1.5 pages in book form. So two