Thursday, March 29, 2007

R-O-C-K (Updated)

My friend Jon gave me a ticket to see the band Explosions in the Sky last night. I like the band. They're an instrumental, quiet-to-loud-to-bombastic, indie quartet who, as they've matured, have even begun to take on qualities of the more emotive, multi-tonal, neo-classical composers of yesteryear (maybe Stravinsky or Shoenberg). The results are a big, almost cinematic sound that often sounds like a full-fledged symphony instead of a few guitars and a drum set.

Explosion in the Sky played an excellent show. They've nailed their live act down. It's exciting and flawless... But somehow, that wasn't enough. The loud-quiet-loud-quiet-real loud formula (or the reverse) paid diminished returns and by the fourth song, I had pretty much tuned out. And that makes sense, cuz they're the kind of band that I have trouble paying attention to for an entire album, let alone an entire live show. The utter lack of hooks or pop nuggets just tends to wear on me after a few songs. Thus it went at the sold out show last night.

But alas, tonite I've got a chance to get that mojo back.

Me and Mrs. Delano have tickets to go see young indie, up and comers, The Besnard Lakes. Their new album, The Dark Horse, is awash in Phil Spector-ish, Beach Boys meet Jesus and Mary Chain sweetness. Or as one review aptly put it, "The band reminds me a lot of Low, if, instead of stripping down their songs to bare-bone affairs, they turned it up to eleven and invited Roger Waters to the party."

That reviewer also posted an mp3 of one of the best songs, "And You Lied To Me."


Wow. What a show it was.

They were one of the best live bands I've seen in years. I really like the new album, but live, the guitars move out from the background. They're big, loud and, for lack of a better word, glorious. And the smoke machine was a perfect accompaniment to the shimmering walls of sound and pop nuggets exploding from the small stage.

Do what you must to see this band live.

Monday, March 26, 2007

What's That Stink?

Ahh, the hypocritical, braying jackassery of the Republican Youth Korps is ripe upon the spring air: Eagles vs Ducks: Promoting War from the Safety of Home.

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Turning Worms has been, as far as I'm concerned, a mildly useful organization. But I've never been much for rallies or hosting discussion groups... especially as a proxy for an organization that's ever-closer to the Democratic party.

So, I've removed them, finally, from ye olde blogroll. But as I aint exactly one to close a door without opening a window, I've added a new link.

Sadly, No! is a smarmy, belligerent, wickedly funny political blog. Juvenile yet skewering, it's a fun counterpoint to a blog like Glenn Greewald's super-serious fillets. No a bad one-two punch.

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Write Your Own Caption

This photo is just too precious to limit to one or two smarmy captions.

So, please feel free to add your own on the comments section.

"President Bush Gives Little Brown Worker Lesson in NAFTA/CAFTA Economics."

Jim Beam Brain Bake

Things are slowing down a bit finally. The Great Big Move is nearly finished, but as this new house is officially the 9th place I've lived in the last ten years, there's an incredible amount of furnishing and tweaking to come, cuz, I don't intend on moving again for quite a goddamn while.

Among plenty of other exciting homemaking decisions, we've decided to make a foray into the world of satellite tv. And I'm as giddy as a toddler anticipating Christmas morning about it all*. We're getting the DVR's and about a jabillion stations. The miracle man come Friday morning with the little dish and the magic boxes. I only hope I can get some sleep the night before.

*I should add that as a responsible and moral citizen, I only intend to watch nature and educational programs on my new magic dish, oh, and C-SPAN. And maybe some ESPN. But, really, that's all. Really.

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

419 Is a Joke

Familiar with the Monty Python skit about the dead parrot? I knew you were.

Know what a 419 scam is? Sure you do.

How about the anti-419, scambaiting movement? Of course.

So, what do you get when you combine all three?

A goddamn, certified inteweb classic.

See Xeni's post on Boing Boing for much more about this video and scambaiting in general.

When Fascism Come To America, It'll Be Wearing a Miniskirt

For me, "conservative" cheerleader and professional attention-seeker, Ann Coulter usually garners the kinda attention span usually reserved for a channel-surfing stopover on Sabado Gigante or one of those ouch-it-hurts-sports-injury gawkfests... in other words, she's a fly-by oddity. Or, oughta be.

I find her politics and personality wildly repugnant but at the same time I find her to be such a cartoon of a normal human being, that I can't be bothered to laugh at her, let alone fume about her. But I can only wish she'd remain little more than an occasional blip on my personal radar.

It's just that, every couple of months her inner fascist orbits a little too close to her inner child and she says something so outrageously offensive/stupid/titillating that it gets picked up and circulated 'round the blogoshpere, and sometimes the tv-o-sphere. And I become a little more familiar with Ann Coulter.

As I understand it, she's garnered a large following in America's "conservative" community. She's a perennial major player on the GOP punditry circuit where book deals, speaking engagements and TV appearances have earned her a very, very agreeable income. From there, Coulter plays to the baser instincts of the GOP faithful, oftentimes uttering statements (usually in the form of the defensible opinion--actual or calculated) that would get plenty of other media darlings publicly shunned for a lifetime or two. Tellingly, she's retained her seat in the Pantheon of "conservative" icons as much by explicit approval of those masses, as by implicit approval by the leaders of those masses.

Despite the repeatedly violent and vicious pronouncements vomited from the mouth of Ann Coulter, the GOP has yet to publicly denounce her; yet to claim she's gone too far. Whether it's bemoaning a missed opportunity to assassinate a "liberal" political figure, daydreaming of exterminating America's left-leaning citizens, or, now, the jocular, verbal emasculation of a Democratic presidential candidate, Coulter's words are met with a roar from the groundlings and ever more invitations from the elite.

The always excellent Glenn Greenwald writes about the phenomenon behind this tacit approval of Coulter and her peers by the GOP in today's column, The Right-Wing Cult of Contrived Masculinity. It's perhaps the most insightful, most damning post Greenwald's wrote yet. And that, my friends, is saying something.

Friday, March 02, 2007

Weedend Weekend Reading

Essential reading from the LA Weekly (via BoingBoing):

A Terrible Thing to Waste
Convicted as an ecoterrorist, a brilliant young scholar nose-dives in prison.

*Thanks to Mr. Freejack for pointing out my Friday moment.