Zombie Politics

I drank your milkshake.

Tuesday, July 19, 2005

Intonation Photo Recap, Part 1

The man they call Four Tet... (can't wait for his show with Jamie Lidell at the Bowery in October!)

When I say Go! You say Team!

Prefuse 73 (done reading The Books)

Death from Above 1979 (there wasn't a still photograph in the bunch):

Andrew Bird, Pretty Weird:

Diplo, deejay king (slightly before technical difficulties shut down his amazing set prematurely):

The Decemberists, Closing the Show with a Bang (I stole their tambourine, how awesome?):

Me and Lil' Mr. Go! Team

At this weekend's Intonation Festival (in Chicago), The Go! Team (merry pranksters of English dance music) brought onstage about a dozen or so inner city kids who, until about five minutes before their performances, were idly swimming in a nearly public pool. The kids got up on stage and danced like hell and it was simply... amazing. I grabbed one of the little kids after the jaw-dropping set and got my picture with him. He was adorable. And he said it was "really fun" to be on stage. Check it.

Friday, July 08, 2005

If I Could Marry Her, I Would

M.I.A. (Richard X would be my best man)

Thursday, July 07, 2005

A Great Show That Nobody Watches (But Should)


So… there’s a really great television show on right now and I thought I’d share my thoughts about it. Yes, that’s how bored I am. I see a good television show on, in the summertime, and I feel I have to share it with the world. And when I say “the World” I mean Jordan. And possibly people who click onto my site thinking it’s some kind of horror thing and they’re going to get to see gore. Or boobs. Or boobs covered in gore (sexy). Or something. Anyway…

The show I love is called “The Inside.”

Back-story: The show was co-created by Tim Minear. Tim Minear is a super-genius who worked on “The X-Files” before working on Joss Whedon’s “Firefly” and “Angel” (he did the great season 4 finale which put Angel in charge of Wolfram & Hart). He then moved onto running the brilliant but under-seen “Wonderfalls.” Howard Gordon, who originated a little show (maybe you’ve heard of it, I don’t know) called “24,” also helped with “The Inside’s” inception. [Editor’s note: Alliteration is fun!]

So, its got a pretty high pedigree right off the bat It’s kind of like “Silence of the Lambs,” except weekly and episodic and all that. It’s different from the other police procedurals (“CSI,” “Law & Order: SUV,” “Spooky Synonym: Major Metropolitan City”) because it’s actually good and scary. And the cast is really excellent (Minear brought members of “Firefly” and “Wonderfalls” to be a part of his new project, and we all thank him), and the characters are all truly wonderful. It centers around an FBI unit that hunts truly sick killers; its newest recruit a victim of a horrible kidnapping at the age of 10.

But what makes this show so super-fucking-exciting great is that it’s fearless. FEARLESS. Last week’s episode involved a psychotic nine year-old girl, and this week we were treated to two hours of gruesome crime solving. One case involved a sinister suicide hotline and the other was about a killer who cuts out his victims’ hearts (presumably not due to any impending medical condition). Every episode is full of great character moments as well as shockeroo plot twists, and the final moments of this week’s episode showed us both: the leader of the FBI task force (played by Peter Coyote, a.k.a. The Voice of Oscar - wasn't that bizarre?) resigns, with hints next week that he will become truly villainous. Oowee can’t wait!

Of course, television this good is of course doomed and on a recent posting on his official website, Tim Minear all but sounded the show’s death knell (or rattle, whichever). He said that Fox had not optioned the cast members for another season, even though they were really cheap, so that means no more “The Inside.”

Instead, look for three more “Law & Orders,” two more “CSI”s and maybe another “Friends” spin-off. “Marcel the Monkey,” perhaps?

Wednesday, July 06, 2005

Pitchfork Goes Crazy

As if Pitchfork Media, the ultra-pretentious taste-making music site, was taken seriously before, here’s something to totally blow their legitimacy out of the water… They gave R Kelly’s new magnum opus “TP3: Reloaded” (by the way what the fuck does that title mean – anyone? Anyone?) a 7.4.

Coldplay’s recent “X&Y,” which beyond its extreme popularity and hype is actually a fucking amazing record, garnered a 4.9; Nine Inch Nails’ screamingly wonderful “With Teeth” scored a 6.5; The White Stripes’ underrated gem “Get Behind Me Satan” managed a 7.3. Yes, you read that right: R Kelly’s new album, which includes such classic songs as “Sex Weed” and “In the Kitchen” was notched above Jack and Meg’s recent masterwork. It boggles the mind.

[ALSO: Eagles of Death Metal – 7.2; Green Day’s “American Idiot” – 7.2; Chemical Brothers’ “Push the Button” – 7.0; Lemon Jelly’s “64-95” – 6.5; Beck’s “Guero” – 6.6; Quasimoto’s “Further Adventures of Lord Quas” – 7.0; Supersystem – 4.9; Skeletons & Girl-Faced Boys – 7.0; Marbles’ “Expo” – 4.0]

But beyond that, it’s what is INSIDE the review that really kills me. What you’ve got to understand is that there is a five-part “urban operetta” (that’s what his official website calls it) that ends the album called “Trapped in the Closet.” It’s basically a horrible, sub-Meat Loaf epic about cheating, with more plot twists than an entire season of “The O.C.” And it’s got an accompanying “long-form” video (again: his words) that is ludicrous, even beyond how silly the song is. It is amazing, in an ironic, low-art, high-trash way (i.e., mostly, it’s awful). This is what the all-important P-Fork had to say about it: “the "Trapped in the Closet" cycle, for instance-- perhaps the most bizarre, audacious, brilliant undertaking a major artist has attempted in years.”

I mean… are they for real, or what? They pass judgment (harsh, harsh judgment as the above reviews show), but give R Kelly’s filthy, horrible new album a favorable score, gushing lovingly about one of the most asinine “concept” pieces in the history of music?

Pitchfok, you get a: 1.0, bitch!

Tuesday, July 05, 2005

So What's Fincher Been Up To?


Although Sadly "Rowdy"-less, The Legacy of "They Live!" Continues (In Music Video Form)

Check out this bitchin' music video, inspired by the classic John Carpenter movie "They Live." It makes you appreciate the awesomeness of that movie... and the awesomeness of bikinis. Fuck, I love that movie. And it works on a bunch of different levels, although is mainly great because:

1.) "Rowdy" Roddy Piper is the lead.

2.) The line: "I'm here to kick ass and chew bubble gum, and I'm all out of gum."

3.) The fact that "Rowdy" Roddy Piper's name in the movie is Nada.

4.) All the subliminal message signs that are up (and oddly, in black and white only... seems if the aliens can go undetected on our planet they'd at least know the wallop magenta can pack).

5.) The aliens are truly ludicrous looking. What the hell are they supposed to be?

6.) One of the greatest, longest fist fights in the history of cinema (Keith David vs. "Rowdy" over one simple action: putting on magic sunglasses... I've gotten into so many fights over the same thing).

There are about 5000 more awesome things about "They Live!"... just watch the movie. And invite people over. And serve lots and lots of drinks.

We Are the Handclaps!

Junior Senior. Mercury Lounge. June 23rd. Fucking amazing.

Monday, July 04, 2005

Album of the Week: Sufjan Stevens' "Illinois"

Every week a bunch of shitty records come out and lots of people buy them (or, more accurately, illegally download them off Al Gore’s The Internet®). But sometimes there are some good things released on this, a shimmering Tuesday morning. Every week I’d like to pick one such album, and talk a little bit about it. For our inaugural “Album of the Week,” I am (of course) choosing Sufjan Steven’s “Illinois.”

[EDITOR’S NOTE: Actually, that parenthetical “of course” is a little off base. Missy Elliott has a new album coming out this week called “The Cookbook” and I was truly excited about that as well. Except that when I heard it my initial reaction was that it was positively lackluster compared to her other works. Although it does have that M.I.A. cameo on the last song and it might be a “grower.” I’ll post my thoughts at a later point, no doubt. Back to the subject of the post…]

So, Sufjan may not be such a crazy motherfucker after all. When he announced, with the release of his also-masterful “Michigan,” that he would be doing an album about all fifty states, well, it was hard not to chuckle, or at least let out a hearty guffaw. I mean… FIFTY STATES? I am a young dude, spry and energetic, but just thinking about making fifty albums about fifty states makes me physically exhausted. How he must feel (he is a slightly older dude), well, he probably wishes he just kept his fucking mouth shut about the whole thing. Anyway… This is album two in that series… state two.

“Illinois” is brilliant; it’s a sprawling, beautiful take on a state that no one really thinks about (not that many people in today’s busy world take time to meditate on entire states, although I often daydream about North Dakota). Compared to “Michigan,” this is first and foremost its obvious sequel, as many of the songs borrow structure or motifs from that album. But this one is more sophisticated, sonically, resonating deeper and with more power than the previous “state.” It’s so easy to get caught up in the emotional storytelling of the songs that you sometimes forget how spectacularly you’re being wowed (or that you’re listening to a sympathetic ballad about notorious serial killer John Wayne Gacy). This (like Green Day’s “American Idiot”) is a Big Important Album (notice the capitalization), one that flies in the face of David Browne’s asinine Entertainment Weekly essay from a few months ago wherein he declared the “album” as a singular art form, dead. Which isn’t to say that it isn’t fun, or that you aren’t going to be able to slap one of these songs (many of which are lengthily titled) on a mix tape – because “Come On, Feel the Illinoise!” fits those descriptions to a tee, while also making you want to re-read “Devil and the White City” again.

Anyway, it’s the album of the week. July 5th, Bitch.