Howdy there, friends! Greetings from out West. How are you? Hey. . .before we begin, I feel it safe to warn you that I’m here to bring the sexy back. Yep. Just like Brittany’s former boyfriend, Justin, and this crazy, little fucker. . .
Just want to pinch his cheeks, don’t ya’? Seriously, ladies. . .Kim, Justin and I all have something in common. Know what that is? No? Ahh. . .come on ladies. Let’s just say that it’s not the size of the explosion, it’s where you detonate the load. Know what I’m sayin’, playaz? Damn straight. BLAM!!!. . .bellybutton or lower back tattoo. Take that!!! So anyway. . .
Hey, if you are anything like me, and we’ve already established that you are all EXACTLY like me. . .with the exception of the excessive back hair, webbed toes and genital warts. . .you are sweating a little bit right now because Halloween is just around the corner. That’s right, friends, it’s time to find the perfect costume. . .again. So, what’s it going to be this year, huh? You gonna go traditional or topical? Sexy or slutty? Kooky or ironic? The choices are endless. You know, for me, this decision is always a challenge, but I find it easier if you narrow your choices down to two. For me, considering that last year I decided to choose between slutty and sexy, this year I am going either topical or. . .umm, superhero. Here’s what I’m mulling over. . .
First and formost, I’d really like to go topical and show up to my local church Halloween party as. . .
…Florida congressman Mark Foley. However, I am unclear on how to make the large, paper arrows pointing to my mouth and anus that read “INSERT PAGE HERE” subtle and suitable for wearing all night long. I am also contemplating going as Debbie LaFave’s 14 year old “student,” but I’d think I’d get tired of walking around all night with an ENORMOUS smile on my face and giving everyone a wink and a “double thumbs up.” Hell, I guess that rules out going as a “lottery winner” or the guys who just sold YouTube, as well. Torri Spelling after pissing daddy off on his death bed? Naw. . .for two reasons. First, going as a bug-eyed bag lady doesn’t sound all that appealing and second, ever since I was propositioned after a midnight showing of Rocky Horror, I don’t do drag (best fucking Janet Weiss YOU’LL ever see, I’ll tell you that). I’m sure you’re thinking. . .”How about Kim Jong Il. . .like up there in the picture?” Yeah, well that’s real sweet there, princess, but even though I could pull off that forehead, “nipple-buttons” leisure suit and those Amber-Visions® in my sleep, how many 6’5” Koreans do you know? Wait a minute, that could be great, but see what I mean, people? This is tough.
Now, on the other side of the coin, so to speak, are my super hero ideas. What superheroes you ask? Why, that’s easy. . .tops on the list is Gyne-LotriMan. . .the Yeast Slayer. Only problem with that costume idea would be making the baker’s hat look cool with spandex and a cape. Second choice? Sailor Moon. But again. . .ever since Rocky Horror. . .well, you know. Hell, maybe I’ll just steal this kids idea. . .
. . .and go as Maxi-Lad. Only problem would be taking off the costume. Remember that “waxing scene” from 40 Year Old Virgin. . .yeah. . .on second thought, maybe that costume isn’t such a good idea. Wait a minute. . .how about I go with the costume that I bought while all jacked-up on Ambien. Wait. . .nope. . .Rocky Horror all over again. Besides, taping your junk to your butt like Buffalo Bill in Silence of the Lambs is MIGHTY uncomfortable. Trust me on that. Damn!! Decisions, decisions, decisions. Tell you what, maybe you folks can help, but more on that later because it’s time to check out some new music releases. This week, we sit down for a spell with the new ones from Beck and the Killers and Double A spins the compilation disc, Chrome Children. Should be fun. So, what do you say? Let’s get to it, shall we??!!
Album: The Information
Bastard Love Child of: Beck’s Sea Change and Mellow Gold.
Best for: Seeing what else Beck can do with two turn-tables and a microphone.
For those of you out there who went “old school” and picked up the actual CD of Beck’s new album, The Information, you know that in addition to the cheesy, home-made videos included for all of the songs, the disc comes with a “blank” cover and a bunch of stickers so that you can customize it to your liking. See that cover up there? Sure, that’s somebody’s vision of what the cover SHOULD look like. But it’s not MY vision. Au contraire, mon frere. I used those stickers to make my disc cover look like this. . .
Now, this may come as a surprise to some of you out there, but Beck is a weird, fucking little monkey. But you know? It is precisely that weirdness, coupled with tongue-in-check unpredictability, that makes his music so damn cool and so damn different that I couldn’t help but become a huge fan (just thought I’d put this critique into context for you. You’re welcome.) I mean, where else can you hear pop, hip-hop, country, folk, funk, experimental jazz, arcade bleeps and lounge music all on the same album? Nowhere, that’s where. Okay, maybe on a Bjork disc. . .whatever, smart ass.
As a fan of Beck Hanson, the one thing that I have come to expect from each, new album is something unexpected and, in that regard, this new disc actually disappoints a bit. However, in this case, that’s hardly a bad thing. Hearkening back to his Mellow Gold days, The Information revisits Beck’s more “eclectic” days, but wisely chooses to sprinkle in some of the melodic ballads found on more recent albums, most notably, Sea Change. The overall effect is mesmerizing. In fact, there are some tracks on this disc that represent some of the finest work Beck has ever done; a fact I attribute to the return of producer Niles Godrich (ever hear of a band called Radiohead?) and his spacey production style.
Highlights of the disc include the pop-synth perfection of “Soldier Jane”, the Primal Scream-invoking “Cellphone’s Dead” (check out “Loaded” from Screamadelica. . .good shit right there, my ecstasy-poppin’ little pals), “Strange Apparition” and my personal favorite, the trippy, moody “Dark Star.” There is a lot to like, nay, love, on this album, regardless of whether or not you’re a fan, but before you think I’m just jacking Beck off with long, slow strokes here, I gotta be honest with you. I absolutely LOATHE the song “1000bpm.” Okay, maybe I don’t loathe it, but I’m pretty sure that song, much like Mary Hart’s voice, gave me a seizure. Seriously. I remember hitting “play” on that track and then the next thing I know, I woke up on the floor with a sore tongue, foam in my mouth and shit in my pants. Of course, I suppose that might have been the Jaeger. But again, whatever.
So. . .do you rub her nose in it and smack her with a rolled up newspaper for doing that to the couch?
Rating: 5 out of 5.
|Artist: The Killers
Album: Sam’s Town
Bastard Love Child of: Queen and Meat Loaf (and remember, kids. . .if your Meat Loaf’s, beat it).
Best for: Realizing that the hot chick hitting on you at the Hard Rock is probably a hooker and that you never “hit” on “19.”
I don’t know about you, but I REALLY like the Vegas Tourism Board and their new ad campaign “What Happens Here. . .Stays Here.” Think about the possibilities!! Now, thanks to this ad, you have the freedom to jump on that red-eye to Vegas, get shit-faced at the Luxor, rob a bank, start a drug cartel, do a couple lines of coke off the ass of a hooker, bury her dead body in the desert and fuck a goat and know FULL WELL that nobody outside of Vegas will EVER know. Pretty cool, huh? I mean, hell. . .I used to think you just went there to gamble. But now? The possibilities are endless. In fact, I already have my plane tickets, so warm up the goat.
Now, I fully realize that if you are a fan of the Killers, whoops, excuse me. . .I meant THE Killers, you’re already all over this disc like pedophiles on MySpace. However, for those of you still on the fence about this one, I wanted to weigh in and give you my two cents because I have seen a ton of negative reviews for this disc. Most of the reviews want to bash this album because The Killers had the audacity to bolster their sound by paying homage to stadium-friendly acts like Springsteen and Queen. Wow. What a bunch of dicks, huh? I mean, imagine the gall of a band aspiring to the sounds of Springsteen and Queen. It’s absurd!! Oh, and in case you can’t glean this from the text, it’s dripping with sarcasm right now.
Seriously, friends, believe me when I say that most of these reviews are COMPLETE bullshit (unlike my reviews which are just MOSTLY bullshit) and even though you are not going to be seeing the videos on TRL, this is still a very good album. Granted, Sam’s Town does not have the easy, “instant hits” that Hot Fuss had and it’s going to suffer in terms of all-around air time, but the songs are stronger and this disc, over time, will stand up better than it’s predecessor. 100% guaranteed. You see, the sound of the new material retains all of the fluff of Hot Fuss, what with the neo-new wave synths and shit, but the songs here are bigger in sound and scope with more complex orchestration and they are infinitely more interesting. I especially like Brandon Flowers’ phrasing and how he uses his warble-y voice to punctuate my favorite songs “Bling,” “Read My Mind,” and “Bones.” Oh yeah, and the opening guitar riff on “Uncle Jonny” kicks ass. Of course, the lyrics still kind of suck, but hey. . .I don’t recall Hot Fuss winning a Pulitzer either.
Pick this album up or fuck a goat. The choice is yours.
Rating: 4 out of 5
If you’re like me, you take joy in the little things in life. Cookies being one of them. Cartoons being another. There are many other little joys that I take part in, but now is neither the time nor the place to get into that. But I do love me my cartoons, and frankly, cartoons don’t get any better than the ones that delight me every night during Cartoon Network’s [adult swim] block. The Venture Brothers, Aqua Teen Hunger Force and Tom Goes to the Mayor? All of them brilliant. Except for 12 oz. Mouse. I don’t get it. People keep telling me that it’s really funny, but it just looks like a bunch of stupid to me. But, to each their own I guess. Anyway, over the last year, [adult swim] has been trying to branch out into other mediums, namely movies and music. Since this here is a music column, we’ll just concentrate on the music aspect of all this.
Last year saw the release of the first Adult Swim album The Mouse and the Mask by acclaimed producer Danger Mouse and rapper MF Doom. This album was fantastic. I dare even say it was fan-fuckin-tastic. With its cartoon centric rhymes and liberal use of dialog samples from the cartoons, The Mouse and the Mask worked well and was easily one of the best albums of last year. Now, this year sees the release of the album called Chrome Children. Unlike The Mouse and the Mask, Chrome Children is a compilation album featuring 19 of the hottest young hip hop stars. At least I think they’re hot and young, but I really don’t know. With the exception of MF Doom, Madlib and Quasimoto, I haven’t heard of a single person on this album.
Chrome Children offers a blend of some great raps and some so-so instrumentals. Just about all of the tracks with someone spitting on it are pretty good. The sad part is only a few of the instrumentals offer anything to the listener. Most of them are boring. With the exception of the song “Nothing In Mind” by Koushik, the instrumentals actually drag the rest of the album down. But seriously, “Nothing In Mind” is a damn fine song. It actually has some lyrics in it, so it’s not a true instrumental, but the beat is out of control. I dare you to listen to this song and not start to groove. Go ahead, do it. I’ll wait.
Overall this album is just ok. The songs that are great (“Oh Zone” by Oh No and “Take it Back” by Madlib) are great. The songs that stink (“Simply a Joy” by Georgia Anne Muldrow and “Third Rock” by Pure Essence) stink. They would have been much better off with two separate albums, one of raps, one of instrumentals. Something that this album doesn’t have, which I find kind of odd, is there are no songs about any [adult swim] shows. I’m not saying it’s a bad thing, just odd. With that said, I’m off to eat more cookies and have inappropriate thoughts about Dr. Girlfriend. Peace.
Rating: 3 out of 5
Hey? You kids like Danny Elfman? Ex-lead singer of Oingo Boingo (one of the greatest bands. . .ever)? Composer of the theme’s to The Simpson’s, Pee Wee’s Playhouse and Tim Burton’s Batman to name but a few? You like free shit?
Well, I have in my possession, 5 copies of Elfman’s new masterpiece, Serenada Schizophrana. Here’s some of the press on it:
“Adding another facet to an already brilliant life in music, Danny Elfman steps out from his career-defining role as a Grammy Award-winning, Oscar-nominated composer of original music for film (Batman, Spiderman, Beetle Juice, The Nightmare Before Christmas) and television (“Pee-Wee’s Playhouse,” “The Simpsons,” “Desperate Housewives”) with the release of Serenada Schizophrana, his first orchestral composition written specifically for the concert hall.”
“The world premiere of Serenada Schizophrana at Carnegie Hall on February 23, 2005 drew ecstatic reviews across-the-board from both classical music and pop culture critics. It subsequently received worldwide exposure as the featured music in the soundtrack to the IMAX film Deep Sea 3D which was narrated by Johnny Depp and Kate Winslet. The Sony Classical recording is conducted by John Mauceri, best known for his sixteen years as conductor of the Hollywood Bowl Orchestra.”
This is a REALLY cool disc and if you’re a fan of Elfman or Boingo, then this is a must have, especially with Halloween right around the corner. So, what do you have to do to win a copy? Well, as I mentioned above, I am struggling to come up with a kick-ass idea for a Halloween costume and I want your help. Drop me an email with the heading “COSTUME” and in the body of that email, hit me with your ideas, pictures, drawings. . .whatever. . .for the perfect Halloween costume. Pretty simple, huh? Don’t forget to include your name and address so that I can mail your winnings. Unfortunately, this contest is only open to those of you in the U.S. Winning submissions will be posted in the next installment, so have fun with this one!
Well, there you have it friends. That’s going to do it for me and the gang this week, so, until next time, keep wearing it proud and playing it loud!
Send your Page Applications, review copies, presents and assorted hate mail to:
P.O. Box 1222
Arvada, CO 80001
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