Tuesday, December 30, 2008

The Redneck Guy Who Turns Out to Be a Substitute Teacher, Which is Scary Because He Displays Such Poor Social Skills in the Intimacy of the Steam Room

A One Act Play

Curtain Opens

We are in the steam room of a downtown gym. LARGE BEEFY TATTOOED MAN (LBTM) and SCRAWNY SMART ASS BLOGGER SECURE WITH THE SIZE OF HIS PENIS (SSABSWTSOHP) are relaxing in silence after a long work out as the sound of steam emits an hypnotic hissing into the tiny room. Because these characters do not know each other, neither one says a word to the other.

After a beat, the door to the steam room opens and in walks HILLBILLY SPORTING A PONYTAIL WHILE ALSO WEARING BIKINI UNDERWEAR WHICH FITS A LITTLE TOO SNUG FOR ANYONE'S COMFORT LEVEL (HSAPWAWBUWFALTSFACL). He sits down between LBTM and SSABSWTSOHP.

All the characters sit in silence for a minute or two as steam fills the room.

HSAPWAWBUWFALTSFACL: Fuck!

(HSAPWAWBUWFALTSFACL changes his position so he is now lying down.)

HSAPWAWBUWFALTSFACL: (Gives a loud sigh.)

All the characters sit in silence for another moment.

HSAPWAWBUWFALTSFACL: The shit don't stop until your casket drops!

LBTM and SSABSWTSOHP sit in silence, unsure whether or not to comment on HSAPWAWBUWFALTSFACL's outburst.

Another moment passes in silence.

SSABSWTSOHP stands up and quickly moves to the showers.

The End

(Curtain)

Friday, December 26, 2008

"Hello, Cleveland! We're Heathen Chemistry and This Is a Track From Our New Album!"

Pretentious Album Titles Which Are Destined to Become Band Names In the Near Future:

Captain Sad and His Ship of Fools (The Cowsills)

Sparkle and Fade (Everclear)

5000 Spirits (The Incredible String Band)

Rosemary Lane (Bert Jansch)

Architecture & Morality (OMD)

Sunday Street (Dave Van Ronk)

Candles in the Rain (Melanie)

Slow Flux (Steppenwolf)

Listen to the Warm (Rod McKuen)

Three Imaginary Boys (The Cure)

Even a Gray Day (Tom Paxton)

Spiritual Machines (Our Lady Peace)

Whales & Nightingales (Judy Collins)

Vermin in Ermine (Marc Almond)

Scream Dream (Ted Nugent)

Children of the Future (Steve Miller Band)

Ssssh (Ten Years After)

Purple on Time (US Maple)

Moon and Mind (Oregon)

Flying in a Blue Dream (Joe Satriani)

The Kick Inside (Kate Bush)

A Kiss in the Dreamhouse (Siouxsie and the Banshees)

Blue Bell Knoll (Cocteau Twins)

Filigree & Shadow (This Mortal Coil)

The Burden of Mules (The Wolfgang Press)

Wednesday, December 03, 2008

My Gods Can Out-Meditate Your Gods

I would not be amiss in assuming that time spent with hippy-jam outfit Sun Araw would be akin to the frequent conversations I end up having with the spiritually-leaning alternative rock show promoter who attends the same gym as me. "I balance rocks on top of one another when I'm meditating in the desert," he proclaims proudly. "It keeps me connected to the earth's energy." The only energy you're plugged into, I contemplate replying, is the Electric Brainwave of Retardville, you Guatemalan-vest-wearing dipshit. If he ever wrote a song as powerful as Horse Steppin', I'd be inclined to agree with his quasi-religious mumbo jumbo. Create a tune as mesmerizing as this and you can pile 8 tons of boulders on your fucking hairy-ass nuts, for all I care. But no, I have to endure his Tibet-styled bowing-to-the-sun-lion yoga poses right before he retires to his art studio where he whips up pretentious sculptures of sci-fi goddesses and oddly homoerotic male torsos. It leaves me asking myself, Who Would Jesus Shun?

Monday, November 24, 2008

Duck and Cover (or At Least Mimic Closely)

Seeing how America is currently waging three unwinnable wars--one against Iraq, one against Afghanistan and one against twee icon Sufjan Stevens (in the form of a prolonged backlash)--it should be considered treason to find a few songs by the Australian outfit Clue to Kalo somewhat catchy. Yes, they ape Stevens in a symphonic-pop-stars-who-majored-in-Literature kind of way, but I'll be the first to admit I'm a musical Benedict Arnold while swooning to certain movements within The Infinite Orphan and User to a Carrier. Thankfully, when the enemy engages in torture via the too-cute-by-half Kate Bush-esque vocals of Ellen Carey (on the ghastly What Went Down Around), I come to my senses and toss my grenade towards the proper target. If excessively precious songwriting was a homemade dirty bomb, that track would elevate the current threat level of the Homeland Security Advisory System to "Severe".

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

My Body, Myself

Here are a few of my many physical failures:

1. I still tie my shoes one bunny ear at a time.

2. I am unable to get to that one reoccurring zit which resides on my lower left shoulder. It requires asking complete strangers to reach it for me.

3. I have never been able to cross my eyes.

4. I am unable to skip when jumping rope--I can only pogo.

Here are the extraordinary physical successes of one-man-band Trin Tran:

1. It's a Burn!

2. Hot and Alive/Cold and Dead

3. Dark Radar

4. A-Bomb!

If Numbers were ever forced to downsize, Trin Tran could totally be the replacement scab worker.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Press Conference With Blogger-Elect Disco:Very

2:53 P.M. EST, FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 13, 2008

Blogger-Elect Disco:Very: This morning we woke up to more sobering news about the state of today's music. Of the 240,000 songs written throughout October 2008, all of them were utter crap. In total, nearly 1.2 million songwriters lacking the raw tools of talent are pestering more than 10 million Americans with utterly useless music. Tens of millions of families are struggling to figure out how they are going to "rock out" and/or "get their groove on" in the coming four years. Their stories are an urgent reminder that we are facing the greatest musical challenge of our lifetime, and we're going to have to act swiftly to resolve it.

Now, the United States has only one true music blogger, and until January 20th of next year, that blogger is me. I have spoken to President Bush. I appreciate his commitment to ensuring that the remaining days of his administration will continue to be a total fucking disaster. And I'm also thankful for his invitation to the White House (but I declined because I hate his guts). I'm going to confront this musical crisis head-on by taking all necessary steps to draw your attention to good bands and restore growth and prosperity to the independent music world.

This morning I met with members of my Transition Music Advisory Board, who are standing behind me, looking at my butt. To them I say: do these pants make my butt look big? They will help to guide the work of my transition team, working with Rahm Emanuel, (who, we can all agree, is very hot in an older lapsed-Jew kind of way), in developing a strong set of policies to respond to this bad music crisis.

First of all, we need a rescue plan for music lovers which invests in immediate efforts to create music which doesn't result in dry heaves, and provides relief to skinny indie guys who grow full beards at the tender age of 22 and wear Animal Collective t-shirts. They are watching their musical erections shrink with each passing Cat Power CD. The musical Viagra which will help them spring into action would be rock music of a more urgent nature.

Second, we have to address the spreading impact of the reprehensible Kira Willey and that fucking wispy song Colors. You know--the one used in that Dell commercial. America, I beseech you: it's a song taken from an entire album devoted to yoga. An entire album devoted to yoga recorded especially for children. I stand here today and pledge that we will hunt Kira Willey down and crush her. Her musical terrorism will not flourish on these shores.

The news coming out of the music industry this week reminds us of the hardship it faces due to the millions of free digitial downloads swapping hands on a daily basis. This is American ingenuity at its best and I salute all of you illegal downloaders for your efforts. You are helping to bring this evil monster to its knees and I am humbled. I would like to see my administration do everything it can to accelerate the demise of the music industry which all of you have already enacted. In this same spirit, my transition team has recommended I post links to some of today's leading noise-making artists.

Let's begin with Lazer Crystal, from Chicago, Illinois. Their unique blend of post-80's dance rock and cocaine-fueled New Wave beats makes my heart convulse in the best way possible. I would also like to draw America's attention to The Black Bug, a scruffy-haired group of such impulsive troublemakers that even their idols Suicide would be scrambling towards an exit sign.

Finally, I would like to remind my fellow Americans that Avenpitch are still doing their best to get a drunken America off the couch and onto the dancefloor with their latest album Cast Off, which poses the musical question: what if the Swimming Pool Q's had actually been hyped up on youth instead of hair gel? Loathe though I am to advocate actually buying music, I strongly urge all Americans to listen to the free downloads from this album and decide for yourself: is this the haphazard direction I want my country to assume? Let me answer with a resounding, "Fuck, yeah!"

With that, let me open it up for some questions. You there in the back, with the Alkaline Trio hairdo.

Reporter: Good morning. Long time reader, first time questioner. I'd like to know if this long-winded overly-indulgent prank press conference--obviously a copy-and-paste pastiche from an actual press conference held by President-Elect Barack Obama--was simply a way to write about some bands you happen to like without having to reference their work too much, thus ensuring the full intent of this blog which is, to put it lightly, to stroke your massive ego?

Disco:Very: No comment. This press conference is over. I have spoken! [sudden thunderclap; winged monkeys chase reporters from the room in a violent frenzy.]

Sunday, November 09, 2008

Their Blues Period

It's been obvious for many years now that the Jon Spencer Blues Explosion have been on an artistic decline, but I had no idea they were sliding so quickly. They can't even make it as a covers act. Are you happy with yourself, Matador?

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Twin Beaks

Some weeks back, a rash of odd pointy objects appeared on the right side of my snout. Initially, I feared the worst: nose cancer, or some previously undiscovered disease which will make dermatology experts awash in excitement to be on the forefront of a new biological frontier. Eventually, after applying pressure to the area, the end result was a crusty crop of glorious blackheads jutting forth. Sweet!

This is somewhat the same reaction I feel when approaching a new album by The Fall: is it going to be a deadly cancer on the nose of music history? Or will the gamble instead yield delight and unmitigated ecstasy, much the same as those deliciously tasty blackheads? Unlike my arch nemesis Underneathica, I actually prefer Mark E. Smith when he sips one aging foot in the atonal clatter of his past and the other in the Brix-era sideways pop of what music historians now call "his middle years." I tend to swoon more over the kind of tunes where they almost sound like smash hits, except that this particular Billboard chart is buried in the bottom of a dustbin languishing at the end of a grimy Manchester alleyway.

The rickety construction of Strange Town, the taut tension of Senior Twilight Stock Replacer and the buoyant shout-along I've Been Duped are as brittle as any oxidized acne you care to name. Don't believe me? Just give my schnoz a hug (there's a lot of nose there for you to squeeze).

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Music Hath Charms to Soothe a Savage Beast (Except When It's Crap Songs, After Which This Savage Beast Turns Into a Snarling Asshole)

Just because, like me, you're wholeheartedly throwing all your support behind Barack Obama, our future president (that is, if the Republicans don't once again steal the entire election out from under us because we're all too busy blogging to actually bother hanging Karl Rove by his hairless pasty white balls), it doesn't mean you have to set his candidacy to such fucking god-awful music. I'm very happy to know there are video reinforcements but must they be shot with the same emotional impact of a Gap ad? You'd never find me wearing a monochromatic outfit enabling me to be part of a living tribute to a logo, but even if you did, can't we all agree the performer of this half-assed faux-inspirational suck song should be nailed to the side of a barn and left to die? Please, people: let's just vote Obama into office and stop setting this election to music. Leave the ineffectual pop tone picks to the Gilmore Girls.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Live Blogging While Viewing the Restored Edition of The Last Waltz Which I Avoided Watching In the Past Because the Soundtrack Makes Me Gag

00:09 This film should be played loud, the intro titles read. I would concur, except I would also add, "Be sure to turn the volume down during the actual music segments.".

09:28 Our first glimpse of how The Band looks. Now I know where Wilco get their fashion sense.

15:14 Oh, look--it's Ronnie Hawkins performing one of my favorite rock and roll mannerisms: redneck band leader screaming encouraging rev-it-up phrases over the guitar solo. Darby Crash died for your sins, Ronnie--please don't let his loss be in vain.

26:51 If there is anything more painful than hearing a fuzzy-brained hippie reading the introduction to The Canterbury Tales, I have yet to experience it.

30:28 "You know this guy, I bet..." Robbie Robertson exclaims as Neil Young ambles his ramshackle self onto the stage. I certainly do: I saw him begging for change in the parking lot of my local Walgreens this morning. He said he needed money to buy diapers, but I wasn't born yesterday.

53:29 The puzzling sight of Neil Diamond playing on this bill is akin to witnessing Sha Na Na when they performed at Woodstock. I'm half expecting The Manhattan Transfer to make an appearance next.

57:43 "What about women on the road?", Scorsese asks The Band during a backstage interview. "I love 'em!", exclaims the nearly-toothless, homeless-looking Richard Manuel. The follow-up question should have been, "How much did you end up having to pay for each one?"

59:25 Is the necklace draped around the skinny neck of delicate songstress Joni Mitchell fashioned from Nazi insignia? No wonder she was so furious that Neil Diamond was invited to play!

105:18 If I never again have to hear another White man crooning "Train Kept a Rollin'" (in this case, the insufferable Paul Butterfield), I will die a happy man.

109:10 For reasons unclear to me, the blues great Muddy Waters is performing without a guitar, with that role being supplanted by some anonymous long-haired hack behind him. Were the concert organizers afraid to give him an instrument for fear he would steal it?

113:33 Two words: Eric Clapton. Good sweet Jesus, our Lord and Savior, I've passed gas more interesting than this drivel.

126:48 Levon Helm gives a nutty quote: "The greatest priests on 52nd Street were the musicians. They were doing the greatest healing work. And they knew how to push through music which would cure and make people feel good." So our national health plan should be...get some NYC street buskers to run our hospitals??

130:26 I think Levon Helm should charge Grandaddy royalties for using his look without permission.

132:24 The proto-Las Vegas stylings of Van Morrison remind me exactly of my high school Economics teacher. Especially when he does the karate kicks mid-song.

136:56 Hearing poet/boho artist/vagabond Lawrence Ferlinghetti give his refashioned reading of "The Lord's Prayer" is almost enough to make me vote Republican.

141:06 I can't decide if the hat atop Bob Dylan makes him look like a pimp or like Jeff Lynne circa Xanadu.

146:06 So it's come to this: the All-Star jam version of "I Shall Be Released" which sees more musicians on stage at one time than there are members remaining in the audience. If only this farewell concert could have been held at Altamont.

Allez à l'enfer, Décou:verte.

As a public service to all my readers, I'm going to translate select song titles off the new album Synthetique by the French 80's glam outfit Prototypes:

L'amour L'amour L'amour means "Love, love, love."

Machine Arriere means "Machine of the butt."

Un Coup de Langue means "My language blows."

Est Ce Que Tu M'aimes? means "Do you like the letter M?"

I've Got No Shame means "Disco:Very has officially run out of jokes. What can I say? It's been a busy news cycle."

Saturday, October 18, 2008











FORGOTTEN FAVORITES RECENTLY HEARD ON MY iPOD
[DURING WHICH I PEED MY PANTS WITH EXCITEMENT]


Solid Gold by Eagles of Death Metal (buy)

Sinking Ship by The Clean (Currently Unavailable)

Kawliga by The Residents (buy)

Nervoused Out by Joe King Carrasco & the Crowns (Currently Unavailable)

Juicy, Juicy, Juice by Royal Trux (buy)

(Dancing On a) Saturday Night by The Bay City Rollers (buy)

Surfin' School by King Uszniewicz And His Uszniewicztones (buy)

Pink Flamingos on Coffee Pot Boulevard by Steve Nieve (buy)

Mysteries of Love by Antony & the Johnsons (buy)

All Wrong by Kaada (buy)

School for Robots by Bruce Haack (buy)

Lunar Module by Big Dipper (buy)

Sunday, October 12, 2008

The Twee Which Dare Not Speak Its Name

Oh, dear. It seems that Let's Whisper is in a bit of a pickle. They have a list of new song titles in front of them (written in crayon) but can't seem to remember which ones are real and which ones were submitted by lovers of their innocent yet child-like gentle pop sounds. Can you help them figure out which song title is the real one amongst all the fakes? [Answer is below]



Popsicles Are Fun

We Like Gumby Marathons on Nickelodeon

Let's Skip Down the Street Until Our Legs Fall Off

Oatmeal on a Cold Day Makes My Tummy Go Yummy

I Love My Rainbow Toe Socks

When You Were Eating Ice Cream

Hello, Little Ladybug on My Arm

Look! I Sprouted My First Pubic Hair!

Let's Chew Our Gum Forever and Ever and Ever

Chocolate Milk is Part of a Nutritious Breakfast

Calvin Johnson and Me are BFF

My Mom Bought Me New Underwear and the Snug Fit Makes Me Feel More Secure

Sucking My Thumb While Going Potty

Candy Cigarettes Taste Like Pepto Bismol (Yum!)

[Answer: Thanks for visiting my blog! I'm glad you're my special friend!]

Wednesday, October 08, 2008

The Audience Members in the 2nd 2008 Presidential Debate and the Questions They Wish They Could Have Asked

Gogol Bordello Guy: "What are your policies on the hardships faced by traveling gypsy musicians? And what will you do to reduce the price of black and white striped leggings which they frequently wear?"

Woman Who Irons Her Hair: "Senators, I am a big fan of Phoebe Snow and yet she hasn't had a hit record in over 30 years. What are your thoughts on any potential future hits by Phoebe Snow? [Pause] For god's sake, will someone tell me if Phoebe Snow is ever going to have another hit album???"

Redneck Boy Barely Old Enough to Vote: "Senator Obama, everyone says I look like Larry Collins of the Collins Kids, yet I still have not had a date in the last two years. If you are elected President, what will you do to help me get a date?"

Classic Rocker Having Mid-Life Crisis: "Is it a bad thing that I play air guitar when listening to Los Lonely Boys...in my underwear?"

Emo Boy and His Goth Girlfriend Sitting on His Left: "This is a two part question: Where do you stand on Further Seems Forever vs. Dashboard Confessional? And my girlfriend would like to know what you plan on doing to stem the tide of zombies taking over the earth?"

Pained Moderator: Will someone please kill me?

Monday, September 22, 2008

True Ghost Stories about Patty Griffin's Living With Ghosts

Linette S., 41: Let me just start by saying that until last week, I did not even know who Patty Griffin was. But all of that changed last week. I only worked a half day and went home thinking I would just go and lay down for a while. I'm in bed and all of a sudden I could feel something is lifting my blanket and slowly putting it down again. I thought it was my imagination and did not make much of it. Then I had the distinct feeling something or someone was looking at me, which really creeped me out. But the worst thing was when I started hearing really bad AOR songs with absolutely horrible overwrought singing. I shuddered and thought, "Who would want to listen to this crap?" The next morning, I immediately cancelled my subscription to Paste Magazine..."

Russell P., 26: For about two weeks now, my fiancée and I keep feeling or seeing someone floating into our apartment hallway. It doesn't matter if my fiancée is home or not, I see this female figure standing at the end of the hallway by our bedroom entrance. The figure is super white or pale in color and appears to be wearing a flowing dress, like the kind you'd wear to a swanky awards ceremony. I can't make out distinct details but I get the feeling whatever it is, it's sad, especially one night when I heard the eerie sound of this figure crying, just openly wailing--something about not having yet winning a Grammy despite having slept through every level of her record company's A&R roster..."

Tanya W., 35: I would never say I had extra sensory powers or anything like that, but I'm acutely aware of White women who think they can sing all soulful. I just have a sixth sense for it--that fake gospel trill, the vocal crescendos that overstay their welcome, and so on. Well, a couple of years ago I was housesitting for my sister's family because they were going on vacation. I asked my niece if I could please use her room to sleep in as it had all the amenities that I needed, but she kept warning me that it was haunted by Patty Griffin, but I didn't even know who the fuck that was, so what did I care? That evening, I lay down on the couch and watched some TV. Peaceful enough, I thought, until I felt the room become very dull, almost as if enveloped by a huge loaf of white bread. This was followed by a really weird kind of singing, the kind of sound you hear White women make when you can tell they'd give anything to sing without the shame of having been born White. I kept thinking, "Did someone transport me to a coffee house open mic night?" I yelled out to the spirt to please stop singing, but the damn song kept going on and on...something about 1000 kisses, so I just went running from the house...anything to avoid that damn god-awful singing..."

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

The Disappointment Only a Father Could Feel For His Worthless Wayward Children

I raised all of you better than this. Here is all the wrongness which you allowed to happen during my recent sabbatical:

1. You encouraged Leslie Hall to channel her inner Roches (but at least she possesses a much better fashion sense).

2. You catipulted Santogold into the charts simply for emulating M.I.A. when, in reality, she is also guilty of copying Gwen Stefani, The Breeders and Gwen Stefani.

3. You sanctioned Alec Empire as he morphed into Gary Numan without the sense of humor.

4. You replaced Stereolab with Monade and nobody has yet detected the switch.

5. You decided that since The Kinks and Green Day have not delivered any recent product, it would be fine for the Foxboro Hot Tubs to fill in during their absence.

6. I do feel pride, however, over how you continue to pick cartoon-like political figures to run for public office, giving me more practice to enhance and strengthen my burgeoning alcoholism: I drink a shot of tequila every time Sarah Palin has another baby.

Tuesday, September 09, 2008

My Precious Feelings on the 35th Annual Telluride Film Festival

As usual, I was the first in my party to spot Ken Burns. I somehow end up winning this spirited competition every year, with Burns and I gravitating towards each other within mere hours of the festival’s beginning. Is it because I, too, am a 40-something male sporting the bowl cut hairdo of a 12-year-old?

While waiting in line for Firaaq (a film so pedestrian, I had to depart 30 minutes into it), I spy Salman Rushdie conversing with the film’s director Nandita Das. I briefly considered carrying out the fatwa which has been exacted upon him, but realizing there was no financial reward involved, I quickly lost interest.

Although I am against public stalking in principle, during a screening of Max Ophuls’ newly-restored 1955 epic Lola Montes, I spy my favorite husband and wife filmmakers Christine Molloy and Joe Lawlor (also known as the Desperate Optimists) taking their seats. Needless to say, I can’t resist planting myself in front of them to blather to them how much I love their films, especially Who Killed Brown Owl, a film which still haunts my thoughts every so often. Thankfully, they are gracious and polite, completely refraining from having security remove me from their vicinity, although the restraining order presented to me after the screening did hurt my feelings somewhat…

If the timing had been a bit more perfect, I could have crossed swords with actor Greg Kinneer in the men’s restroom right before viewing the tepid Danish blockbuster Flame and Citron. Instead, I am a few nano-seconds behind him, performing my last-drop dance at the urinal while he’s already at the sink soaping up. I had an “in” (we attended the same college) but by the time I had worked up my opening statement (“Hello, Mr. Kinneer. You lather your hands with the same dedication you showed in Little Miss Sunshine—and I even walked out of it halfway through!”) he was long gone. Curse me and my long-winded time-consuming verbosity!

Another restroom encounter, this time with UK director/genius Mike Leigh. I briefly entertained reaching out to introduce myself and proclaim my love of his movies, but he’d just left the urinal and had not yet washed up afterwards. Yes, he’s created some of the most acclaimed films in recent British film history, and more than a few of his cinematic efforts are on my Top 100 Favorite Films list, but I’ll be damned if I’m going to let his pee-pee backsplash rub onto me as we shake hands. Ewwww!

A day into the fest, I once again spy Ken Burns, this time one row in front of me during the screening of the gritty Italian film Gomorrah. Oddly, he and his wife make tsk-tsk faces at each other during the film’s frequent outbursts of violence, as if to say couldn’t the director scale this bloodshed back a little? Considering it was a film about the present-day Italian mafia, he’s lucky the carnage wasn’t more savage than it already was. If only I’d had a bottle of tequila with me, I could have made their shocked reactions into a drinking game.

Imagine my surprise when Hunger—the film I was most reluctant to watch--turns out to be one of my favorite flicks of the entire fest. The elliptical style and the stark camerawork had me captivated from beginning to end. Bonus points go to those seated near me who did not seem to mind my loud munching on carrot sticks during the hunger strike scenes.

Take the frantic family antics of Capturing the Friedmans, turn the dysfunction up about 10 notches, toss in a third-act link to Orson Welles and you have Prodigal Sons, a discomforting autobiographical documentary by Kimberly Reed. After it’s over, you’ll almost find yourself feeling lucky for being born into your own family. Almost.

Rain is one of my least favorite weather elements (right behind tornados, swarms of locusts and ash clouds spewed from active volcanoes). To avoid one of Telluride’s typical torrents, I reluctantly grabbed a place in the dry tent-covered line for Paul Schrader’s Adam Resurrected merely as a means to avoid the downpour. Had I known what was in store, I’d have gladly chosen a deluge of Biblical proportions instead. Imagine the worst parts of Patch Adams, Life Is Beautiful and (I assume) The Day the Clown Cried tied together in a Holocaust comedy/drama vehicle for Jeff Goldblum. Goldblum is made to behave as a dog under the Nazi thumb of Willem Dafoe, later causing him to engage in dog-like animalistic sex on all fours with sexy nurse Ayelet Zurer (it's quite natural that hot women spread their legs for aged men 30 years their junior). Did I mention he attempts to heal the heart of a young Holocaust survivor who thinks he’s a dog?

One feels a sense of wonder and innocence while watching Jan Troell’s 1966 coming-of-age tale Here Is Your Life. Then the scenes of the where-did-that-come-from? homoeroticism pop up and you just end up feeling like a pervert. Bonus points for the snippet of conversation between two aging film professors I overheard before the screening begins: “My students are on You Tube all the time. I’ll send you the link.”

While exiting Tulpan, the acclaimed new film from Sergei Dvortsevoy, I find myself behind a contingent of marketing brass from Turner Classic Movies, all of them underwhelmed by this subtle award-winning work, utterly perplexed are they by the frequent images of goat herds living and dying on the Kazakhstan plains. It’s good to know the vast cinematic library overseen by TCM is in such capable hands.

Monday, June 02, 2008

Snake In The Ass

Oh, Maya Rudolph, you multi-hyphenate talent of indeterminate racial origin! When we locked eyes earlier this morning--you in your Earth Mother finery, me in my Homo-Lite office wear--it made me giggle in all those secret places. I swooned and tingled, much the same way I feel when listening to the music of Luie Luie, another superstar of possibly unknown ethnicity (but almost certainly what some would call Fiery Latin). It would be appropriate to say his music touches me, but seeing how almost all the songs on Touchy are about touching (El Touchy, Sweet and Tender Touchy, Tortilla Touchy, Touch of the Pharaohs, etc) perhaps this comes off as redundant. Let me instead say it's as if each out-of-control trumpet is personally goosing me in my tender regions, reaching for the gold, scoring a touchdown only God himself can achieve with his magic, serpent-like fingertips.

Thursday, May 29, 2008

It's the End of the Bush Administration As We Know It (And I Feel Fine) (Even After Using an R.E.M. Quote Despite Railing Against Them So Much)

Please don't even begin to express your shock--outrage and shock!--over the allegations in defrocked doughboy Scott McClellan's bitch-and-tell bestseller. Did you really think Bush wasn't at all the world's biggest fuck-pig liar about his motives for the Iraq war? Were you really in the dark about Cheney's obvious involvement--practically tattooed on his forehead!--with the Valerie Plame leak? Next thing I know, you'll be telling me you weren't expecting the latest album by The Oh Sees to be dripping with reverb and thunderous pounding rhythms. Was there ever a moment when you assumed The Coconut was going to wimp out and fall asleep at the wheel? Could you have hoped for anything but head-split-open urgency from tracks such as Ghost In The Trees? Am I to believe you ever considered for even a nano-second that Poison Finger wasn't going to be your New Favorite Song of 2008?

Despite the former Press Secretary golden boy failing to resign six years ago, washing the blood of over 4000 US soldiers off his hands that much sooner, I can't help but dance the Schadenfreude tango around W and his seething minions. At this point, being tried for war crimes is almost too good for him and his dundering disciples.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

It's a Disco:Very vs. Elisabeth Kübler Ross Smackdown!

The First Song Popping Up on Your iPod Which Makes You Weep During the Long Drive Home from the Funeral:
Don't Bother, They're Here by Stars of the Lid, due to its tender ethereal weight. A vast soundtrack to the cosmos, it makes you reflect on loss and grasping the infinite, asking yourself what the fuck it's really all about.

The Second Song Popping Up on Your iPod Which Makes You Weep During the Long Drive Home from the Funeral:
Song for Bob by Nick Cave and Warren Ellis (from the soundtrack to The Assassination of Jesse James By the Coward Robert Ford), due to its epic sadness, exposing the massive tragic destiny of life, making you ponder what the fuck is beyond living and dying.

The Third Song Popping Up on Your iPod Which Doesn't Make You Weep During the Long Drive Home from the Funeral, but Instead Just Makes You Ask "What the fuck???:
A Feast for Famished Ravens Part 1 by Xynfonica.

The Kurosawa Flick Which, After Enduring the Death of Your Father, Holds New Resonance and Wisdom, Pointing a Way Towards Understanding and Accepting a Loved One's Illness and Passing:
Red Beard, but only the scenes involving Yuzo Kayama witnessing elderly patients dying alone, not the scene where Toshiro Mifune is violently breaking the arms and legs of his attackers outside the brothel (this only occurred, like, just a few times in my youth, and even then only after I'd finished all my homework).

On Death and Dying, Part 1: It's become more common, when one dies in a driving accident, for your loved ones to mark the sight of your roadside death with flowers and mementos in remembrance of your life. I've decided, if I were to be killed while driving, that I'd rather my loved ones not commemorate the spot of my demise with trinkets. Instead, simply block off the road with massive cement barriers, making sure nobody is allowed to traverse on that particular street ever again.

How I Would Like to Die: The makers of Forrest Gump and The Puffy Chair (two sides of the same overwrought coin) are pitted against each other in a battle to the death, staged in an enormous outdoor stadium, broadcast worldwide. In my glee over the possibility of both sides getting slaughtered, I find myself slipping from atop my perch in the nosebleed section and rolling down the stairs, smack into the middle of the violent melee. My arch nemesis, Sarah Jessica Parker, is watching from the sidelines, cheering on my imminent demise. To her surprise (and to my delight), a swarm of alligators are released onto the field, all of whom quickly chomp onto the neck of Mrs. Matthew Broderick, killing her instantly and diffusing any chances of a sequel to Sex & the City: The Movie. Meanwhile, all the actors from The Puffy Chair--along with anyone who enjoyed this tepid turd of a film--are suddenly gobbled up by a pack mob of flesh-eating microbes, leaving the cast and crew of Gump momentarily victorious. But not for long: a large cache of M-16 missiles are mysteriously thrust into my waiting arms, allowing me to smite everyone remotely connected with this. In my haste to waste these cinematic vermin, I slip on one of Sarah Jessica Parker's Antique Rose Prada boots (a slightly amusing irony) and crack my skull open, dying instantly.

On Death and Dying, Park 2: It's quite natural, when envisioning your own future death, to ponder who precisely will be attending your funeral, and if their presence is because of unconditional love or merely out of a sense of duty. One way to guarantee the sincerity of your mourners would be to erect a Fear Factor-styled obstacle course outside your place of burial. Loved ones must traverse impediments such as acrylic crates of hissing cobras, walking over scalding coals, and so on. Nothing says "you will be missed" more than gulping down a spoonful of juice squeezed from pig intestines.

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Praise You Like I Should

It was a given that Daddy:Disco was going to pass away very very soon, and although he was not much of a music lover, I had been scratching my brain for the last week or so in an attempt to find that perfect track which would pay tribute to him; something, say, like an Italian folk song.

It finally occurred to me, as that dreaded phone call arrived late tonight (pronouncements of death always come in the evening or early morning, don't they?), that since Daddy:Disco was the King of Cussing, especially while flexing his talents as a home renovator, what better CD track to post than Daddy's Curses, a hilariously surreal 10-minute rant by some Every Father (recorded in secret by one of his brood) utilizing the gamut of expletives: from gosh darnit to the American standard goddammit. There's even a few original gems such as scuzz hole, what a pain in the asshole, and my personal favorite motherfucking dog-licking goddamn bullshit. It's like listening to the Billboard Top 100 of dirty words.

Goodnight, sweet Daddy:Disco. From now on, anytime I scream you fucking piece of shit after hitting my thumb with a hammer during house repairs, it will be my own personal salute to you.

Sunday, April 20, 2008

Bleakness on the Edge of Town

The all-dark-clothing urgency of Iron Curtain's music should make my eyes roll, yet they surprisingly stay firmly in place. Perhaps it's because the paint-it-black keyboard wash and echo-laden vocals of 25 years ago which drip over every track on Desertion 1982-1988 now finds itself in vogue once again. These tunes sound timely without being retro. Sure, some of the compositions push too hard at being seen as dangerous (the only reason to name a song Anorexia or Legalize Heroin is simply to ruffle the hair of the status quo, the same way I post anti-Poi Dog Pondering musings so as to receive threatening comments). But when the unknown pleasures of Love Can Never Die and The Burning begin their mesmerizing climb towards some mysterious ethereal target, you'll feel yourself being lifted off the dance floor into the heavens.

Friday, April 18, 2008

Poi Dog Pondering Have Left the Building--Will All of Their...HOLY SHIT, THEY'RE BACK! RUN FOR YOUR LIVES! SOMEONE DUG THEM UP FROM THE GRAVE! AAUGH!

You are always greeted by a multitude of shocking experiences when shopping the mega-enormous Amoeba Records in Hollywood. To start, there is that final tally to your charge card. Second, you'll spot releases by bands whose break-up you had assumed was a done deal. [You mean to tell me the fucking reprehensible Poi Dog Pondering is still together and was somehow allowed to release a new fuddy-duddy hippy-dippy album???]

But the largest jolt to the system isn't even the myriad of celebs spotted as you traverse the densely-packed record aisles. No, the most jarring moment is when one of those celebrities (hello, Giovanni Ribisi, you dimwitted Scientology freak!) spies you placing a sub-par Vince Guaraldi disc into your shopping basket. "Silly Pre-Clear," he clucks in your direction. "Everyone knows that Guaraldi peaked with A Charlie Brown Christmas. Sure, the pleasant previously-unreleased outtake Nobody Else ascends somewhat close to the genius of the well-known Xmas soundtrack, but after that you are forced to endure the faux funky Woodstock's Dream and the dentist's office dullness of Never Again. Only when you audit yourself of past traumatic Body Thetans, as I have, can you attain my infinite peace and wisdom."

"No offense, Giovanni," you think to yourself while reading his mind (a gift from birth received without benefit of an E-Meter.) "But I saw you in SubUrbia and if that's Serenity of Being, I'll stick to being an aberration, thanks."

Monday, April 14, 2008

A Dream Deferred: A Play in Three Acts

ACT ONE

The scene opens on a line of travelers awaiting the task of showing their boarding passes to an FAA inspector at the Tucson International Airport as they prepare to fly to Los Angeles. The line moves slowly--the inspector is courteous yet thorough in her duties--but dispenses each traveler in line at a steady pace. About three people from the front of the line is ASTRONOMY PROFESSOR, a married man in his early-to-mid 50's, balding yet continuing to grow his hair in a shaggy swirl as if still in his 20's. He is wearing a blue long-sleeved shirt buttoned to the neck and accented with a novelty tie emblazoned with a planetary pattern (the moon, Saturn, Venus, etc, all of which is surrounded by a wash of stars and galaxies). The shirt is tucked into loose-fitting professorial khaki pants looped with a nondescript belt. The footwear chosen to compliment this ensemble is flip-flops. Directly behind ASTRONOMY PROFESSOR is DISCO:VERY who is watching the man in front of him with astonishment and disbelief.

The ASTRONOMY PROFESSOR is now at the front of the line as he hands the FAA INSPECTOR his boarding pass.


FAA Inspector: [disinterested monotone but professional nonetheless] Good morning, sir. How are you today?

Astronomy Professor: Living the dream. [Spoken with renewed emphasis] Living. The. Dream.

ACT TWO

The lights come up on DISCO:VERY who has just witnessed the actions in the previous scene. He collapses, clutching his heart and falls to the ground in spasms.

ACT THREE

A hospital waiting area. Everyone who has ever glanced at and/or loved reading DISCO:VERY is crowded into the tiny room as they await word from THE HEART SPECIALIST. The actors adlib their grief over DISCO:VERY's situation as THE HEART SPECIALIST enters stage left and walks into the densely packed waiting room.

The Heart Specialist: [Speaking to the gathered crowd with courage and conviction] I'm sorry. I tried everything I could to revive him, but his heart just couldn't take what he witnessed. My sympathies are with you during this difficult time, but, jeez, c'mon! It's not like there aren't billions of other self-obsessed blogs with which you can replace it in your computer reading rituals, right??. Get over it.

CURTAIN

Wednesday, April 09, 2008

The Beatles Have Left the Building--Will All of Their Fans Please Head Towards the Exits?

With only two of The Fab Four barely standing, pondering the legacy of their artistic impact becomes less and less interesting with each passing day. All that's left to ponder are the reactions of all the other bands when faced with such a pervasive cultural icon.

In the case of the Ace Records comp Beatlemaniacs, you get to hear abundant examples of supreme nobodies attempting to touch the hemlines of Somebodies. Sonny Curtis spells it out deliberately: A Beatle I Want to Be. Others, such as The Fondettes cooing The Beatles Are In Town are much more keen to gaze from afar, enraptured over the fabulousness of the subject at hand (although one wonders why sisters this soulful would be hot under the collar over these honky Brits).

I, however, much prefer the Third Reich and Roll-ness of The Better Beatles, yippee pranksters from out Omaha way who committed a hilarious fuck you to their lesser namesake on a one-off 7-inch single back in 1980. Thankfully, their entire slapped-together oeuvre (along with a heaping of outtakes) is now being offered digitally. Their bizarro version of Eleanor Rigby rips the pathos out of McCartney's hack dime-store-novel setting and recasts it as a hobbled sea chantey. Lady Madonna becomes a nonsensical New Wave stomp, while Penny Lane emerges as some sort of bastard child born betwixt A Flock of Seagulls and Flipper.

Why, you might ask, should I care so much about musicians creating music as a reaction to other musician's music? Because, I reply, emotional scars on blatant display: someone has named their band after me and it's made me feel empathy for what John, Paul, George and Ringo must have felt upon hearing the imitators posted above.

By the way, I'm going to be in LA for the next few days. If anyone knows whether or not Amoeba Records has guard dogs on duty during closing hours, call my beeper. I plan on figuring out a way to spend the night there somehow...

Thursday, April 03, 2008

His Divine Hammer

Plugged-in Gaul rocker Electronicat scores your most masochistic toothache to a throbbing pulse as layers of guitar noise undulate on your brain waves in a shimmering display of aural menace. On his 2007 missive Chez Toi, tracks such as Pancake Lady and Seveneves become red-beamed sniper lasers zeroing in on your temple, while the thank-god-it's-finally-available-on-CD shoulda-been-a-hit She's a Queen plods its way to the dance floor through a back beat fuzzier than that Quaalude slipped into your mojito. The album's unending machine-driven drummer is only slightly more metered than Electronicat's unwavering duty to the eternal buzz he's been advancing for the last 10 years. It's a language he invented himself, and you'll only learn to understand it the more you're immersed in it.

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Old Farts at Play

Thursday, March 27th, 2008

CLEVELAND – The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum breaks ground today on its newest feature, the You're Not Necessary Nursing Home and Euthanasia Insta-Clinic, which is scheduled for completion in early 2009. This new facility will house past-it performers who, after being forcibly removed from irrelevant tours plugging recent releases, will be sedated into retirement using a potent mixture of lobotomy-inducing drugs.

"Sadly," explains Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum President and CEO Terry Stewart, "The idea for a rock and roll nursing home was in the planning stages just as we heard about the upcoming albums by such give-it-up-already artists as The Breeders, R.E.M. and The B-52's. If we had conceptualized it, say, a year earlier, the illegal-downloading public would have been saved from having to endure these wrinkled nothings as they attempt to regain their artistic footing long after it has already withered away like so many thinning hairdos."

"Around here," he continues proudly, "We call these types of albums 'musical comb-overs'".

While the nursing home component of this facility will be off-limits to the general public, the Euthanasia Insta-Clinic will be a fun-filled exhibit for the whole family, allowing paying visitors to "pull the plug" on their favorite musical artists whose spotlight should have been extinguished long before they embarked on yet another reunion tour or, in the case of R.E.M., the dreaded loud-guitars-show-we-haven't-lost-our-balls grand comeback album.

Some of the more notable mercy killings at the Euthanasia Insta-Clinic will take a somewhat creative bent. The B-52's, for instance, will be killed by being forced to wear breathable cotton fabrics (or, if necessary, plaid). In the case of The Breeders, it will involve reintroducing them to the pleasures of heroin.

This new facility is financed in part by the generous corporate sponsorship of Jim Beam, Taco Bell and Mix 106.5 FM.

For more information, contact the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum at (216) 781-ROCK.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

SXSW 2008: A Personal Journey of Struggle and Suffering

One booth at the SXSW 2008 trade show received oodles more attention due to the young, sexy female sporting a low-cut lingerie thingy underneath a taut leather jacket barely draping her Hostess Snack Cake-sized booty. Also, she was continually handing out free candy to every male heterosexual passerby. The booth at which I was employed was not equipped with such flirty enticement and suffered accordingly. At some point during a eureka moment, I myself dressed in the same exact outfit to grab the spotlight, and it while it didn't result in more customers, it did incite a maximum-security riot. Mind you, not the good kind of maximum-security riot.

Another attention-grabbing giveaway for trade show booths is stress balls, especially if the ball in question resembles the head of a Dilbert-like office drone. Attendees to the trade show were beside themselves, swooning over these flesh-colored squishies being offered for free at a rival's table area. It mattered little that these squeezable toys connected not a whit towards the company's brand or image--people were tripping over each other to aquire them by the dozens. Perhaps next year, I will top this competitor's efforts and stand aloft with my testicles hanging out of my pants, offering every attendee a chance to squeeze my flesh-colored squishies. It won't do much for their stress but it will sure help mine.

Almost without fail, trade shows always attract pasty-skinned, long-haired American guys of Scottish descent who cannot bring themselves to attend public functions in anything but a full-on traditional Scottish kilt. Sadly, this trade show was no exception. Next year, I will reach back to my one-quarter Apache Indian heritage and present myself in a full-on traditional native loincloth, smooth lean buttocks exposed for all to see. My people are a proud people, and we have a really hot ass.

One flick playing the film festival garnered its share of attention after the director (or was it the producer?) was frequently seen around town clad only in Tudor-style dress, fittingly draped so as to articulate the the theme of the movie. Will this top the promotional efforts of Zoo wherein several out-of-work actors were paid to walk around town fellating horses? Only time will tell...

Spotted while dining at one of Austin's enormous Whole Foods natural markets: a pasty-faced rocker dude sporting long unwashed hair along with Doc Martens and a black Nirvana shirt underneath a plaid flannel shirt. My guess is, he was being ironic. The heroin track marks on his arm, however, were probably very sincere.

Because my hotel was also hosting a rather large plumbing suppliers convention, the sculpted gel do's of the hip SXSW guests were frequently overshadowed by sights such as this: a matronly plumbing convention attendee towing a small bag into which were stitched little plastic windows. Inserted into the see-through frames were numerous pictures of her children and grandchildren. It doesn't stop there: each picture was surrounded by embroidered Biblical verse. The fact that she was involved with plumbing somehow makes her personal sense of style so much dirtier than she intended it to be.

Spotted at a grungey vegetarian restaurant near the university campus: a po-faced dreadlocked caucasian male hippy eating dinner with a righteous Feminist sister rocking her lesbian seagull New Wave hairdo. Perhaps I've been away for a while but did these two groups sign a peace treaty when I wasn't looking?

Sadly, I was unable to attend any music performances. This means I missed White Williams, These New Puritans and a host of many other current favorites on the pop scene. What I ended up seeing instead of live music: 1001 young women walking around Austin, all of them looking exactly like Kate Nash. Should you ever encounter a similar visage, please be aware that a bottle of Pepto Bismol only works on internal sickness.

Thursday, March 06, 2008

My Father Was Sister Ray (and I Was Grounded Every Night of the Week)

So, Lou Reed: I see that we will tangle once again. Are you so hell-bent on revenge that you would follow me all the way to this year's SXSW Festival? Is it my fault that, back in the halcyon summer of 2005, you caught me in a short-lived love affair with your dog on the streets of Telluride? Laurie didn't seem to mind--in fact, her winsome smile led me to believe that she approved of the love which dare not bark its name. Now, you and I will once again exchange old-man glances as the weathered parenthesis around our mouths show us for the grizzled warriors we are. En garde, Mr. Reed. Although you are facing a formidable foe, it is my belief this will not be the last time we tussle over your fine furry friend.

Saturday, March 01, 2008

Even when you're at your most most macho while shopping for replacement parts on your washing machine at the local Ace Hardware, it is no match for the swaggering femininity of Ring My Bell when it plays over the store's PA system.

Is my cat Little Hitler a living descendent of Adolf Hitler? I must have History Detectives investigate...

The voice recognition devices now being installed in new cars seem handy, but instead of responding to the command, "Play artist: The Strokes", wouldn't it be more useful for car manufacturers to install a device which responds to the command, "Kill artist: The Strokes"? And then the car goes out and actually kills The Strokes? And the car has to stand trial for you when you're charged with murdering The Strokes? It would also be cool if the car offered to give its life for you after you're sentenced to die for murdering The Strokes because a lethal injection for a car would probably just be sugar poured into the gas tank. Big deal.

Idea for a horror movie: Jimmy Swaggart is dead but two of his three chins are still very much alive and on a bloody killing rampage.

Possible book series: self-help manuals for indie rockers lacking self-esteem. Tagline could be: "If four pasty white guys from Columbia University can call themselves Vampire Weekend and put out crap faux-South African Mbaqanga for the caucasian NPR crowd, then you can do anything!!"

I'm still trying to come up with possible cash-cow spinoffs of Fox-TV's new hit series The Moment of Truth. Strongest idea so far: center the show around Bindi Irwin, having her corner a different manta ray each week to ask, "Did You Kill My Daddy?" Look into product placement tie-ins with Mrs. Paul (advise them to change name of best-selling item to "Deep Sea Revenge Sticks").

I have a feeling hordes of gullible music fans will end up buying that forthcoming Ryan Adams 6-CD boxed-set. Perhaps I can fleece them into also buying a boxed set comprised of my last six bowel movements. Mine is obviously the better deal but I should think about throwing in a rebate coupon just to clinch the sale.

Attempting to fill your 80GB iPod to capacity means resorting to the leftovers in your collection like Polvo and that ill-informed Neil Young purchase. It's similar to that experiment where you try wearing every single item of clothing in your closet every day of the year, no matter how hideous. When the moment arrives and you're sporting the wacky neon-green vintage Hawaiian shirt you bought in high school, you're an ass. It's the same feeling you'll have when Breaker, Breaker by Scrawl pops up on shuffle and you think, "Why have I been hanging on to this all these years??".

Despite what the Religious Right says, the ghastly events of 9/11 did not happen because God was punishing America for engaging in deliciously sweet sodomy. No, 9/11 happened because someone disobeyed Devo's universal laws and played Gut Feeling/(Slap Your Mammy), Come Back Jonee and Sloppy (I Saw My Baby Gettin') as three separate tracks. These three songs must always be listened to as an ensemble, one right after the other. They make up a holy trinity and must never be parted. They are as much a rock opera as anything else in the pop cannon. To play them as separate tracks is akin to pogoing on God's foot in the mosh pit.

My father’s recent decline in mental and physical health has given me inspiration for a new book series (similar to Everyone Poops) which teaches the elderly not to fear their body’s natural undertakings as they descend into their final golden years. Possible first title in the lineup: The Pokey Little Penis.

Idea for a new drinking game: when watching Antiques Roadshow, you must do a shot whenever they say the word Connecticut.

Thursday, February 07, 2008

Supernatural (and Super Irritating)

The good news is that the Sahara's biggest musical success story Tinariwen continues making great strides in getting their hypnotic artistry heard around the world. The bad news is that guitar wanky moustached insect Carlos Santana is also part of this world and, as a result, has been caught playing alongside them, ruining their perfect music with his my-musicianship-is-so-intense-I'm-having-an-orgasm-of-the-face theatrics. If after viewing him thoroughly destroy the mesmerizing "Amassakoul" with his yawn-inducing string work, you aren't moved to throttle him breathless and bury him under your front porch, please stop reading this blog because you must enjoy listening to bad music and you are going to taint my good music taste with your leftover-70's-guitar-hero-worship taste.

Monday, February 04, 2008

Let's Classify the Regulars at My Gym and List the Musical Artists They Most Closely Resemble

Gym Regular: Woman In Her 50's Whose Fading Beauty Forces Her to Rely on Wearing T-Shirts Emblazoned with Slogans Drawing Attention to Her Enormous Breasts
Musical Artist She Resembles: Charo

Gym Regular: Bearded Jesus Freak Racquet Ball Player Who Seems To Have an Unending Supply of T-Shirts with Religious Slogans on Them and Who Would Probably Hump Jesus' Leg If He Had the Chance and Yet, If Jesus Really is Guiding His Life, Why Does This Man Continue to Lose at Racquet Ball Every Day?
Musical Artist He Resembles: Patrick Simmons of The Doobie Brothers

Gym Regular: Mentally Off-Center Man Who Kind of Smells and Talks to Himself, Lifts Enormous Amounts of Weight While Sweating Profusely (While Never Wiping Off the Equipment) Yet He Never Seems to Be in Any Better Shape than He Was When He First Began His Gym Membership Five Years Ago
Musical Artist He Resembles: Daniel Johnston when he forgets to take his medication

Gym Regular: Hairy Married Guy Who Goes Through Great Lengths to Hide His Privates While Entering the Showers Even Though, in Reality, There Isn't Anyone Besides His Long-Suffering Wife Who Would Bother to Eye Such a Teeny Tiny Insignificant Penis
Musical Artist He Resembles: Martin Mull

Gym Regular: Oddly Coifed County Worker Who So Obviously Used to Be an 80's Hair Metal Devotee Back in the Day But, Now That He's Been Thoroughly Emasculated Working 40 Hours a Week as a Common Office Manager, Makes Up for It By Enlarging His Arm Muscles To The Point Where They Resemble Baked Hams, All the While Sporting a Hairdo Befitting a 10th Century Viking
Musical Artist He Resembles: Dave Hlubek of Molly Hatchet

Gym Regular: Glam-Rock/Hip Hop Dancer Who is a Dance Major, Performing Energetic Dance Routines in the Mirror Inbetween Sets So We Can All See That He is a Dancer Because There Might Be the Slim Chance Someone Hasn't Figured Out Yet That He Is All About Dancing and As Soon as He Graduates From Dance School He Is So Out of Here Because He Is Moving to New York to Become a Professional Dancer
Musical Artist He Resembles: Peter Allen if he'd been raised listening to Take That instead of Judy Garland

Gym Regular: County Attorney With Cartoonishly Thin Comb-Over Who Chats on His Cell While On the Stairmaster but Whose Phone Conversations are Apparently So Compelling That He Frequently Just Omits Excercising Altogether and, Instead, Simply Stands Stationary on the Machine, Without Any Movement Whatsoever, and Later Tells His Workout Buddies in the Locker Room That He Can't Figure Out Why He Can't Lose the Weight and It Must Be His Wife's Cooking
Musical Artist He Resembles: Paul Simon with slightly more hair

Gym Regulars: Gargantuan Gangsta-Looking Fellow Who Brings His 8-year-old Daughter With Him to Every Workout (Perhaps as Some Sort of Court-Ordered Child Custody Settlement) During Which He Pays More Attention to His Own Massive Tattooed Biceps Than Her Emotional Development and Sense of Self Worth
Musical Artist He Resembles: Sen Dog of Cypress Hill
Musical Artist She Resembles: A more emotionally isolated Janis Ian

Gym Regular: Beyond-Skinny Toothpick-Thin Office Worker Who Appears to Be Trying to Lose Even More Weight Than is Humanly Possible and Who Rudely Refuses to Use Any of the Free Gym Towels Handed to Her By the Front Desk Staff If It Is Less Than Sparkling White
Musical Artist She Resembles: Helen Reddy

Gym Regular: Obscenely Skinny Native American Octogenarian with Really Weird Shoulder-Length (Dyed) Black Hair Who Dresses As If He Were a '50's Rocker and This Gym Thing is Just a Way to Get Himself in Shape in Time for his Comeback Tour Where He Will Really Kick Some Rock and Roll Ass (Except That He Can Only Get Around with a Walker Whose Wheels Keep Getting Caught on the Elliptical Trainer)
Musical Artist He Resembles: A physically-challenged Link Wray

Gym Regular: Hairless and Boney Smart-Ass Aging Hipster Trying to Keep Himself in Shape, Never Once Removing His iPod (Which He Plays at Ear-Deadening Volume) Playing Songs Which Might Eventually End Up Snidely Mocked on His Seldom-Read Blog Which He Believes Might Someday Be Noticed By Someone at a Respected National Magazine and They're Going to Say, "Hello, Disco:Very. We Love Your Blog. Will You Write For Us and Entertain Us With Your Tales of Suburban Angst?" But He'll Play Hard to Get and Toss Around Words Such as "Integrity" and "Artistic Dignity".
Musical Artist He Resembles: A not-at-all-overweight Jon Favreau (if he were to ever pursue a career in music)

Thursday, January 24, 2008

Expressway to Yr Social Security Retirement Check

The one upside to the Patriot Act is the little-known provision allowing Federal authorities to forcibly remove musical instruments from any past-it performer reaching the age of 70: happy birthday and say goodbye to your artfully detuned gee-tar, Thurston Moore.  It's time for the broken-hip hipsters to step down and let the real youth-who-would-be-sonic take their rightful place on the world stage.  All the way from Monterey, Mexico come the incredible noise-maven mavericks Los Llamarada who, for reasons unbeknownst to me, are allowing Nene Records to offer free tracks abundanza to download pronto.  I'm overjoyed with pee (the happy kind) to see Siltbreeze pushing out releases by Psychedelic Horseshit and Teenage Panzerkorps, but until they sign up our scuzz-pop neighbors South of the Border, I'm going to be tattooing the word revenge on my knuckles as punishment for their oversight.  Yes, you don't have to tell me: I only have 5 knuckles.  Abbreviating it to revng will still have the same impact, thank you very much.

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Tragedy (and, Ultimately, Comedy)

I'm sure, by now, everyone reading this has heard the shocking news from which all of us are still recovering. A talented young actor showing so much promise, taken away from us much too soon in mysterious circumstances. Is he gone of his own design? Or was it an accident? I just need some closure! Can someone please tell me why Alltel saw fit to replace the chubby-dork-yellow-shirt Sprint guy with the chubby dork from The Shins in those new My Circle commercials? Unless the authorities commit to a thorough investigation into this tragic loss, we may never know the answer.*
* This joke would be a fuck of a lot funnier if I could find you a link to the new Alltel commercials in question. Damn internet, with its secret handshakes and all...

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

The Pirates Who Don't Do Anything (Except Massage the Prostate of Jesus Christ) (Because, Hello? One of Them is a Giant Cucumber): A VeggieTales Movie

There is one thing you should know about Juno: I am that sassy too-wise-beyond-her-years pregnant teenager. Of course, when the producers approached me about fusing my life onto celluloid, they couldn't bear to end the movie the way I really lived it--with a glorious celebratory abortion (we had cake, party favors and a Squarebob Spongepants pinata to bash around). Fear of box office failure led the movie's producers to center the main premise around sloppy-seconds adoption, and this avoidance of the truth has made me bitter. From now on, I not only want to watch films which end with discarded fetuses, I want the classics of screenings past to be remade with loud-and-legal abortions figured prominently into the storyline: Citizen Kane, On the Waterfront, Bambi, My Dinner With Andre, March of the Penguins...

I mention all of this because my favorite Born Again/Dadaist rap group Soul Junk is offering up two unwanted mostly-instrumental embryos to download for free. Both mixes are freaky, fucked-up and funky and should your ears choose to midwife these beats, they will enrich your pointless life for years to come. If you aren't emotionally stable enough to trudge through their unending postings of Bible-spouting invective, save yourself the heart palpitations and download both tracks from your friendly neighborhood Disco:Very atheist here and here.