Wednesday, August 31, 2005

Scorsese Doc Takes Introspective Look Into the Life of Dylan

Famed film director Martin Scorsese provides an indepth look into the mind and soul of one of America's biggest cultural icons. The two-part documentary No Direction Home features revealing interviews and a slew of unseen footage of famed folk-rock musician Bob Dylan.

Airing September 26 and 27 on PBS, the 3 1/2 hour documentary is part of the public televison network's "American Masters" series. Prior to this airdate Paramount Home Entertainment will release the film on DVD. The DVD package contains 45 extra minutes of footage that will not be aired.

In additon to the Dylan showing, PBS has an entire 60's music themed week planned, featuring documentaries on other pertinent bands of the era:

"No Direction Home" is PBS' fall tentpole event. The two-night broadcast, which focuses on Dylan's maelstrom of shape-shifting musical activity from 1961-66, keys a week of '60s-themed programing. Other shows include "Best of the Beatles," a two-part documentary about the Fab Four's early years, seen through the eyes of original drummer Pete Best; "Get Up Stand Up: The Story of Pop Music and Protest," a celebration of "message" music that encompasses Dylan's work; and "The Sixties: The Years That Shaped a Generation," a two-hour look at the decade's political and cultural tumult.

Tuesday, August 30, 2005

Chevelle, Index Case, and Waiting for the Fall

Tuesday August 16th, 2005 – Val Air Ballroom, W. Des Moines, IA

Thinking the concert was going to include 30 Seconds to Mars and/or Taproot, we all were surprised when Waiting for the Fall took the stage at the sweltering, 105 degree Val Air Ballroom. WFTF is a local Des Moines band formed out of the remnants of legendary 90’s local band 35 Inch Mudder in 2001. The band features local Lazer 103.3 radio dj Andy Hall on bass guitar. They impressed me with solid, slow-burning rock and roll. While singer Cory Brown may not sound exactly like Scott Weiland, he sure as hell looks like Scott, plus 100 pounds (and Mr. Brown looked like he weighed no more than 175). They played a good mix of songs from their 2003 six-song debut EP “Gift of Self” and their follow-up five-song 2004 EP “The Place Where Good Things End.” They played very listenable (is that a word?) hard rock. The best song of the night was “Almost Beautiful,” a very easy listening post-grunge-sounding song (hint: anything having to do with grunge scores points with me). They are heading back into the studio ASAP to record their next EP with producer Matt Sepanic (Slipknot, Murderdolls, Marilyn Manson) due in November.

If you’ve never heard of Index Case, you soon will. With Slipknot ready to step aside, the Indianola, IA-based Index Case will take over the title of “that band from Iowa.” Index Case features four guys who featured four different hair styles on this night (mohawk, dreds, bald, and short-cropped). This band brings an incredible amount of energy and darkness to their blistering sets. Joe Ansley sounds amazing, and when he screams out his lyrics he sounds eerily like Chino Moreno. And he may also be the only male on earth besides Rafael Nadal to pull off wearing Capri pants. They played tracks such as “Oxycontin,” “Arusall Analogy,” and “Why Dreams Bleed” off or their first two LP’s, Birth and Glass. But the best song (by far) of their set (and the entire night!) was their closing song, “Listen,” featuring Cory Brown from WFTF. They absolutely tore the song (and my soul) apart with searing guitars and quick tempo. My friend Ben and I were still awed by the song hours later over a few (many?) captain and cokes at Cabaret. So when you go to the store on September 27th to Buy System of a Down’s latest “Hypnotize,” make sure you also pick up Index Case’s major label, self-titled debut which also drops that day. After recently signing with Mortal Music, they tour with Bobaflex beginning September 14th. Also look for their first single and music video, “Deserver,” which was just recently filmed near their native town, 10 minutes from Des Moines.

After waiting (and sweating) for 45 minutes in the almost unbearable Val Air, Chevelle finally took the stage. After Booting Bleach-Blond Bassist-Brother Joe from the band, the remaining Chi-town band of brothers Pete and Sam (with former Filter bassist Gene Lenardo) blasted out of the gates with six straight songs off of their newest LP This Type of Thinking(Could Do Us In). This included “Vitamin R,” “Get Some,” “Still Running,” and “Tug-o-War.” They then went into six straight off of 2002’s Wonder What’s Next, including “The Red,” “Comfortable Liar,” “Forfeit,” and crowd-favorite “Send the Pain Below.” Pete Loeffler’s thick-as-molasses guitar riffs were only outdone by the blinding light show. This is the second time I have seen Chevelle, and they still keep away from most of their older material (why won’t they play MIA??). They did, however, come out of their first encore with the easily recognizable (and awesome) riff from pre-WWN “Point #1.” I was a little disappointed that Chevelle didn’t play my favorite song “Closure,” but they replaced it with the equally good (and new favorite) “Panic Prone.” Both these songs showcase Pete’s underrated (and emotional) voice, and serve to also bring out those lighters . After an hour and half of little talking and all playing (take note: Shinedown!), Chevelle ended the set well with “The Clincher.” Chevelle is on tour through the end of October, so make sure you check out the Loeffler Brothers, sans shirt-less Joe. Check out all the concert photos of all three bands here

Next week: Disturbed, Ill Nino, and 10 years @ the Val Air

Winger - 'Seventeen'

Nothing screams statutory rape like this classic rock ballad by 80s bad boy Kip Winger and friends. A former member of Alice Cooper's band, Kip branched off with his own self-titled band in 1986 and has been the butt of many a joke since. Whether it is via the dorky Stewart character on Beavis and Butthead or a random episode of VH1's Where Are They Now, Winger has served as prime example of what NOT to do in rock. Yet, despite the torment from an unmerciful music press, I must admit that I am addicted to the band's greatest hit 'Seventeen.' In fact, I rocked out to it on the way back from the gym this afternoon. Although I can't say it helped improve my appeal with the ladies, it is true that the song pumped my adrenaline and helped to cap off a very good day.

In this particular mysogynistic anthem, lead singer Kip must grapple with the fact that his newest groupie is only 17. Surprisingly, after all's said and done, he tells the listener that he really doesn't care. She's old enough for him! While such a narrative is so weak it probably couldn't make it past the first cuts of a Full House screening (even starring Uncle Jessie as the Kip Wingeresque character), the remaining elements of the song work in just the right ways. It's cheesy. It's over the top. It's simple. It's loud. It's disgusting...but not too disgusting. While Kip himself faded into oblivion by the end of the decade that screamed excess, 'Seventeen' will always remain my record collection.

I saw sparks fly, from the corner of my eye
And when I turned, it was love at first sight
I said please excuse me, I didn't catch your name
Oh it'd be a shame not to see you again
And just when I thought she was comin' to my door
She whispered sweet and brought me to the floor, she said
I'm only seventeen, but I'll show you love like you've never seen
She's only seventeen, daddy says she's too young, but she's old enough for me
Come to my place, we can talk it over, oh everything going down in your head
She said take it easy, I need some time, time to work it out, to make you mine
And just when I thought she was comin' to my door
She whispered sweet and brought me to the floor, she said
I'm only seventeen, you ain't seen love, ain't seen nothing like me
She's only seventeen, seventeen
Such a bad girl, loves to work me overtime
Feels good (ha), dancin' close to the borderline
She's a magic mountain, she's a leather glove
Oh she's my soul, it must be love
She's only seventeen, still she gives me love, like I've never seen
She's only seventeen, daddy says she's too young, but she's old enough for me
She's everything I need, daddy says she's too young
But she's old enough, old enough for me

Monday, August 29, 2005

Artist Spotlight: White Rose Movement

By this time, it seems like everyone is trying to jump on the whole 80's New Wave-revival bandwagon. Tons of new keyboard-driven bands have been crawling out of the woodwork to get record contracts. Beings that I have always been a big '80s music fan, it hasn't gotten overly tiresome for me quite yet. Besides, not all of these bands deserve to be shrugged off.

The London-based quintet White Rose Movement is one of the emerging bands that are helping keep the old stuff sounding fresh. Taking their name from the German anti-fascist movement of the 1930's, the band cites Depeche Mode, the Sound, and DAF as collective influences.

The band's first single, "Love is a Number", was released earlier this summer, but has continued to draw attention to itself. This one ranks near the top of the heap in the "most likely to be confused for another decade" category. The danceably edgy synth-pop, heavy bassline, art nouveau dresscode, and inflection-tinged vocals are what makes this one worth checking out. I'm not sure whether to bob my head and play air drums or hit the dancefloor. This track could stick in your head like gum on the bottom of your shoe. This band deserves a second listen.

To see the band's video for 'Love is a Number' and hear the new single for the much darker "Alsatian", visit White Rose Movement's official website.

Sunday, August 28, 2005

Dickinson vs. Sharon Osbourne Update

It was reported on Friday that Sharon Osbourne has, in fact, admitted her role in her recent tiff with Iron Maiden. In response to lead singer Dickinson's disparaging comments about her husband Ozzy, Osbourne "cut off the band's sound on several occasions" during an August 20 show.

In her new statement, which doubles as an open letter to Maiden manager Rod Smallwood, she said, "For 20 shows we were forced to hear Dickinson's nightly outbursts from the stage: 'When we come back to America, we'll be back with a proper sound system' or 'We won't be playing the same old songs every night (like (Black) Sabbath),' 'We don't need a teleprompter (like Ozzy)' and 'We don't need a reality show to be legit (again, like Ozzy)."'

Will Bruce dignify the letter with a response? To be continued...

Saturday, August 27, 2005

Kerrang!: Green Day is Best Band on the Planet

Taking hyperbole to an entirely new level, British rock publication Kerrang! has bestowed the title "Best Band on the Planet" to pop-punk sensation Green Day. In addition, they were also named "Best Live Act."

Wednesday, August 24, 2005

Ted's Song of the Week - 08/24/05

The End Is The Beginning Is The End
Smashing Pumpkins
Batman and Robin OST

This week I chose a song I had all but forgot about until a couple weeks ago. My fellow contributor, Steve, had come to visit for a weekend and brought along this tasty single along with a bevy of others on his Ipod. From the moment I heard the first few seconds of this song, I was hurdled back to a time when life was simple and George Clooney was a horrible Batman.
Not to be confused with their other contribution to the Batman and Robin soundtrack,"The Beginning Is The End Is The Beginning", this track was a rare gem on an otherwise weak album.

The sewers belch me up
The heavens spit me out
From ethers tragic I am born again
And now I'm with you now
Inside your world of wow
To move in desires made of deadly pretends
Till the end times begin

Is it bright where you are
Have the people changed
Does it make you happy you're so strange
And in your darkest hour, I hold secrets flame
You can watch the world devoured in it's pain

Climb my ribcage to
The replays run for you
Unhook my lights to peek behind the flash
For I am crystal chrome
I am shatter dome
I am kremlin king of angels avenged
To destroy the end

Is it bright where you are
Have the people changed
Does it make you happy you're so strange
And in your darkest hour, I hold secrets flame
You can watch the world devoured in it's pain

The zeppelins rain upon us
The guns of love disastrous
A shadow lies amongst you
To defy the future cast

Is it bright where you are
Have the people changed
Does it make you happy you're so strange
And in your darkest hour, I hold secrets flame
You can watch the world devoured in it's pain

Chamber Pop Stars to Wrap Up Seventh LP

The Goalkeeper's Revenge is said to be the title of this Scottish group's seventh release. Famed producer Tony Hoffer is responsible for Belle and Sebastian's studio needs this time around, helping to cut the album at L.A.'s Sunset Sound Studios.

Though they ended up spending several months in the city, Belle and Sebastian arrived in L.A. with eighteen songs already completed, the result of time spent in their hometown recording studio last winter. The results from the group -- frontman Stuart Murdoch, Jackson, Sarah Martin, Bobby Kildea, Richard Colburn, Mick Cooke and Chris Geddes -- were material that takes inspiration from soul, pop and a little-known electronic four-piece from Manchester, England. "A track that's pretty different is called 'Song for Sunshine,'" explains Jackson. "We were trying to do a kind of New Order thing, and everybody came in and had a keyboard instead of their usual instrument."

A U.S. tour is planned for the spring.

Tuesday, August 23, 2005

Deftones To Release Rarities Album

The art-rock quintet known as the Deftones will be releasing an album comprised of rarities and covers on October 4th. As a special treat, a DVD featuring 10 music videos and live clips will be included in the package.
The Deftones are currently working on a new studio album to follow-up their 2003 self-titled release.
It's good to see that Chino hasn't let Team Sleep interfere with his commitments to his original group. I can't wait to hear the new material.

The CD is dominated by covers, ranging from Jawbox's "Savory" and Helmet's "Sinatra" to the Smiths' "Please Please Please Let Me Get What I Want," the Cure's "If Only Tonight We Could Sleep" and Sade's "No Ordinary Love." Also included are acoustic renditions of such Deftones originals as "Change (In the House of Flies)," "Be Quiet and Drive (Far Away)" and "Digital Bath."

A complete track listing for the album and DVD can be found here.

Slipknot -vs- Burger King

Slipknot is back in the news by recently threatening legal action against the fast food giant, Burger King. This was sparked when Burger King recently aired commercials featuring Coq Roq, a mock metal band who wear masks. Slipknot claims that Burger King's recent ad campaign has infringed on their trademark rights.

Burger King's
federal court filing, made on August 12th, contains the details for their defense against Slipknot's suit.

Burger King wants a U.S. District Court judge in Miami to issue a "declaratory judgment" that the Coq Roq campaign does not infringe on Slipknot's publicity and trademark rights.

With regards to the masks, Burger King has done their homework by citing various other metal groups like Gwar, Marilyn Manson, Mushroomhead, and KISS. Each of the afforementioned groups have donned make-up and/or masks for their stage shows.

Sharon Osbourne Lambasts Bruce Dickinson; Yes, THE Bruce Dickinson

For those religious Saturday Night Live fans, it is a guarantee they've seen the Bruce Dickinson "cowbell" skit at least once or twice. For those unfamiliar, actor Christopher Walken brilliantly and comedically portrays the Iron Maiden lead singer, and sometimes producer, as a narcissistic and cocky rock figure hired out by Blue Oyster Cult to record the perfect single. Over and over, as BOC tries to cut the perfect edition of 'Don't Fear the Reaper,' an obnoxious and overzealous auxiliary percussionist, played by Will Ferrell, continually ruins the recording. Just as the rest of the band are about ready to throw down and kick Ferrell's character out of the studio, Walken's Bruce Dickinson rushes into the room and proclaims with apparent acute musical wisdom, "I gotta have more coowBell!" Dumbfounded, the rest of the band gives in, begins their umpteenth take, and Ferrell's character wails away on a cowbell, dominating the tune. The skit is indescribably hilarious.

But what might not be so hilarious is that Dickinson's real life persona may indeed parallel his onscreen one. Sharon Osbourne, Ozzy's wife and no stranger to launching public, verbal assaults, claims Dickinson has spent Ozzfest dissing Ozzy and the Ozzfest audience in general.

Sharon claims that "from day one, Bruce Dickinson started berating Ozzy and belittling the Ozzfest audience. Out of 200-plus bands over the last 10 years, he has been the only person who hasn't had the Ozzfest spirit. He thought he was at a battle of the bands, always making other comments about other artists."

Whatever the case may be, there is nothing funnier than two out-of-their-prime music icons involved in a scuffle. Is Sharon being the overprotective, loose cannon she's been known to be, or is Bruce just being Bruce? Just as Walken vainly stated while in Dickinson's character, "I am Bruce Dickinson. Yes, the Bruce Dickinson."

Monday, August 22, 2005

She Ain't No Hollaback Girl!

Apparently Gwen Stefani can't get any respect from MTV. Despite airing Stefani's videos at all hours of the day, MTV cannot seem to quench the Orange County diva's thirst for commercial exposure. Too bad she has to act like someone just took away her birthday.

Gwen Stefani has decided not to attend MTV's Video Music Awards because she is so upset that the network did not offer her a performing slot. The singer is deeply offended by the supposed snub, and she and husband Gavin Rossdale are staying away in protest despite being up for many awards.

Meanwhile, Coldplay, Shakira, Ludacris, Mariah Carey, The Killers, Kanye West, Kelly Clarkson and Green Day will be rocking out at the musical spectacular.

Deceased: Dr. Robert Moog

This article has been everywhere today, and for good reason. Bob Moog was the creator of the Moog Synthesizer - an instrument for sound manipulation that came into existence in the late 1960's, and later became popularized by some of the biggest names in rock n roll. Like Les Paul set new standards for the electric guitar, Dr. Moog created something that has since been of tremendous importance in the music world and beyond. It's important as listeners to realize that music as we know it today has been significantly impacted, not only from the bands who make the music we remember, but also by the inventors who paved the way.

Widely credited as the founding father of modern sound synthesis, Moog built his first instrument, the cult Theremin, aged 14 before going on to establish the MiniMoog, "the first compact, easy-to-use synthesiser", in 1970.

Moog's sound would feature prominently in the music of the Beatles, The Beach Boys and The Doors in the late 60's and early 70's. However, it was Wendy Carlos' 1968 classic "Switched on Bach", which would take the electronic sound to the masses - going on to sell over 1m copies.

Today, 50 years after his initial work in sound, popular bands are still using the MiniMoog and other equipment that has come into existence because of it. Yesterday, after a battle with brain cancer, Moog passed away at the age of 71.

Joan Baez Joining Crawford Protesters

Folk music legend Joan Baez joined anti-war protesters in Crawford, Texas yesterday, near President Bush's ranch. An anti-war landowner in the area provided a wide space of his property for a makeshift concert by Baez to be held.

"You know in the first march I went on against the war in Vietnam there were 10 of us," Baez said as she met with a group of women whose sons died in Iraq or were being deployed there.

The recent protests, spearheaded by gold star mom Cindy Sheehan, began August 6 when she camped out near Bush's ranch, demanding to speak with the commander-in-chief as to exactly what cause her son Casey died for. So far, the president has refused to meet with Sheehan.

"I think the question that nobody wanted to deal with is the question they're posing: did my kid die in vain? Because the answer is too awful," Baez said. She has never met Sheehan but said she spoke to her on the phone.

Artist Spotlight: Bedtime for Toys

Bedtime for Toys, besides being the name of an old Christmas tune by Stevie Wonder, is an exciting new three-piece from Los Angeles that has been emerging quickly from the dance-rock scene. Comprised of lyricist/lead vocalist Marchelle Bradanini, guitarist/bassist Samuel Jacob Chatez, and beatmaster/keyboardist Toussainte Christofe, Bedtime for Toys creates a sound that smoothly blends together a variety of pop culture elements. From New Wave to hip hop; punk to funk, fashion to activism, BfT covers its bases.

After releasing two e.p.'s on their own, the band went on to work with London's Trash Aesthetics label, who put out a U.K. vinyl edition of the group's most recent e.p. Now, BfT is in the studio working on their first full-length album, which is sure to be an exercise in both quirkiness and social awareness. The band keeps things upbeat and fun, even through unsettling lyrics such as "The holding a hearing sealed up on a hill, But like the tower of Babel like sand through our ears, They keep the truth locked, filed and unknown, The fires are rising in the wind below"(from 'Killing Rattlesnakes').

With none of the members being over the age of 24, the band has taken obvious direction from the 80's surroundings in which they grew up. Citing Prince as one of their biggest influences (even putting out a mash up to his 'When Doves Cry'), Bedtime for Toys emits the energy to fill the house, in a vibe familiar to such acts as Scissor Sisters, Le Tigre, and Gorillaz. Their tracks 'Chandelier' and '6x9' have found themselves stuck in my head for probably the last month. You can hear both tracks and more at the band's website

Friday, August 19, 2005

New Addition to The Lonely Note

The musical tricycle known as The Lonely Note has recently gone to the mechanic's and decided to undertake a noticable change...a change that will give it the power of 4-wheel drive. It's not that we feel the trike is broken, but rather that a fourth wheel will give it some added stability.
Without further vehicular references, and on behalf of the three of us, I'd like to welcome our new contributor,
Hank, to the team. As a special features writer, Hank will be updating us on the latest in concert reviews and street news. As an introduction, I have posted his first article below, but any future pieces will come straight from the horses mouth. Welcome aboard!

Hank here, The Lonely Note's street reporter/special features writer. I will be reporting on concerts I attend and other things of that sort. Enjoy!

Breaking Benjamin, No Address, and Salt of Society - August 10, 2005

The opening band at the Val Air Ballroom ( was Salt of Society, a local band from Knoxville, IA. Although they just won a recent Battle of the Bands, this 5 piece has been a band since 1992. The band describes their sound as "straight up rock with sheer and brutal sincerity." I thought of them as band with good riffs and a good clean sound. They opened up with 'Luck of the Draw' off their upcoming EP of the same name. They played other favorites such as 'I Never Said He Stole My Money,' 'Ain't Life Grand,' and closed with 'Wrong Side.' The lead singer has a nasal-sounding voice something like a sober Scott Weiland or a Wes Scantlin. The songs sounded like good songs to sing drunk too, "karaoke-like". I think they deserve a listen. Check them out at

The 5-piece Tallahassee-based No Address ( opened with 'Perfect.' A Lazer 103.3 dj put their sound best: "Easy won't want to make you put your head through a wall." Although not on the same level, the lead singer (Ben Lauren) has a Chris Cornell-like ability to successfully change from low and soulful to loud and abrasive. They played other favorites such as 'Lasting Words,' 'Too Proud,' and the radio single 'When I'm Gone.' I thought they sounded kind of like Jet, and his voice would often remind me of Liam Gallagher. I thought their best song of the night was 'Pretty Girl,' a bluesy track which shows their versalitity--- the guitars sounded Rolling Stones, and I couldn't help thinking of Van Morrison when Lauren crooned the vocals. They closed with 'How Could I Live.'

The soberest (and best) band of the night was Breaking Benjamin( This clean-cut Pennsylvania quartet screams post-grunge, listing influences such as Nirvana, Bush, Live, Pearl Jam, and Stone Temple Pilots. The guitarist claims he learned how to play guitar listening to Nevermind. A local paper described their style as similar to Creed and Nickleback. They opened the show, backs turned, bass thumping through my chest with 'Natural Life.' They played all of their favorites like 'Polyamorous' off of 2002's Saturate, and of course 'So Cold,' 'Sooner or Later,' and closed with 'Rain' off of 2004's We Are Not Alone. On 'Water' I thought Ben Burnley sounded especially like Gavin Rossdale(in a good way) when he screamed the refrain "...Shut up I know." The crowd's favorite song of the night was a killer rendition of 'Firefly.' Burnley even busted into a scarily perfect version of Chevelle's 'Closure' for a verse. Since Chevelle is coming to the Val Air next week, I had to check my ticket to make sure I was at the right concert! Breaking Benjamin are great musicians and I was pleasantly surprised how amazing they were in concert. They brought raw energy to the 105 degree Val Air (no lie!) Do yourself a favor and check them out, you'll be glad you did. Check out concert photos at Lazer 103.3.

Next week: Chevelle, Index Case, and Waiting for the Fall.

'My Doorbell' Vid to Debut on Nickelodeon

Attempting to expand their following beyond the pre-pubescent JoJo fan demographic, Viacom owned kid-station Nickelodeon will be premiering the video for the White Stripes' newest single, 'My Doorbell' tonight. Appearing just prior to hot new preteen reality drama Girls vs. Boys, the video's showing can be seen at approximately 9pm EST.

For those who wish to avoid juvenile theatricals, the video can also be streamed from their official website.

Forgotten Gem: Tasmin Archer - 'Sleeping Satellite'

We've all experienced the feeling of turning on the radio and hearing a song that we've long-since forgotten about - a song that instantly takes us back. Today at work, in the midst of completing one of my many redeeming tasks, I heard the faint humming of a song that caused me to drop everything for a moment. I felt like I'd been sucked into a time warp, asking myself "Is it 1993?" I made a mental note, and soon after getting home, did an online lyrics search for the only line of the song that I could remember. The result was 'Sleeping Satellite' by Tasmin Archer. Upon further audio confirmation, and a half dozen listens, I have decided to share my enthusiasm.

Tasmin Archer's debut came in 1993, with her album Great Expectations. The soul singer's leading single, 'Sleeping Satellite', gained her wide-spread attention in her U.K. homelands, and made the charts in the U.S. and other parts of Europe.

Echoes of electronics open the track, cascading into heartfelt vocals accompanied by acoustic guitar strummings. It doesn't take long before the drums and piano make their appearance, and further build to make room for the bass. The song relies heavily on the chorus lines, however it avoids repetition by continuing to make small changes in its form, such as allowing the piano to turn into an organ, and bits of electric guitar pieced in. The song pushes ahead, and once to the summit, celebrate's in itself for a little while, before eventually fading out around 4 minutes 30 seconds.

Fitting snuggly into the early 90's vault of alternative-pop/R&B hits, 'Sleeping Satellite' is a track that was practically born to be played on adult contemporary stations more than a decade later. Somewhere between Wilson Phillips and Des'ree, Seal and Tracy Chapman... you'll find this classic by Tasmin Archer.


[I blame you for the moonlit sky
and the dream that died
with the eagles' flight
I blame you for the moonlit nights
when i wonder why
are the seas still dry?
don't blame this sleeping satellite*]

Did we fly to the moon too soon
did we squander the chance
in the rush of the race
the reason we chase is lost in romance
and still we try
to justify the waste
for a taste of man's greatest adventure


have we lost what it takes to advance?
have we peaked too soon?
if the world is so green
then why does it scream under a blue moon
we wonder why
If the earth's sacrificed
for the price of it's greatest treasure


and when we shoot for stars
what a giant step
have we got what it takes
to carry the weight of this concept
or pass it by like a shot in the dark
miss the mark with a sense of adventure


We Are Scientists - 'Nobody Move Nobody Get Hurt'

I wanted to let you all know of a new song from a new band that has been rockin' my world lately. The song is 'Nobody Move Nobody Get Hurt' by We Are Scientists. Although the band hails from California, the sound in this song owes itself to European post-punk/new wave. The song is catchy in all the right places, and it has definitely been on my personal playlist all week.

Judge for yourself. Stream the song here, or buy the single here.

Thursday, August 18, 2005

Elliott Smith Lives On

Elliott Smith's music -- lovelorn, smart, melodic, depressing -- has become the soundtrack of choice for dark comedies of the aughts. It's no surprise that the much-buzzed indie dramedy Thumbsucker features two unreleased Smith covers and one Smith original, "Let's Just Get Lost," which appeared on his posthumously released album, From A Basement on A Hill, says

For Thumbsucker's soundtrack, Smith covers Cat Stevens' "Trouble" and Big Star's "Thirteen." Originally, Thumbsucker director Mike Mills wanted Smith to create the entire soundtrack, but Smith died before he could work on the album. The Polyphonic Spree picked up where Smith left off: They provide the rest of the songs for Thumbsucker.

Ted's Song of the Week - 08/17/05

I Am The Man
The Czars

In case there was any question regarding Czars frontman John Grant's gender, here is the song to listen to. All joking aside, this is a great song for anyone who can appreciate the subtle marriage of synthesizers, acoustic guitars, and pouty vocals to produce the genre known as dream pop.
The song may be short on lyrics, but its melancholy presentation produces a full, lush track that clocks in at just under five minutes. Fans of early
Radiohead, Tim Buckley, and Cocteau Twins will appreciate this gem.

You are beyond any reproach now
You are so cool you’re so flawless now
Perfect approach impeccable execution
When you are done can you show me how

I’m not just a man
I am the man you can’t have
I need something else
You are the one who can’t help
You’ve gotten sick on self-satisfaction
And now my patience is wearing thin
You seem surprised, how could this happen
You knew what I was when you took me in

I’m not just a man
I am the man you can’t have
I need something else
And you are the one who can’t help

Wednesday, August 17, 2005

Slipknot's Final Tour

It is said that one of Iowa's biggest exports is not corn or hogs, but instead, college students. However, when it comes to the world of metal, Iowa has spawned another worthy product. Slipknot, one of the most innovative and influential artists within the metal genre, first broke out of the Land Between Two Rivers in the late 1990s, selling millions of albums and tickets in the process. Now, they have decided to wind down their collective career and close the door on the nine-headed monster that is their band by embarking on one last tour. Today was the start of that final journey, with their first tour date taking place in Singapore.

The remaining tour dates are as follows:

Aug. 20: Devore, Calif. (Hyundai Pavilion; Ozzfest)
Aug. 21-22: Las Vegas (House of Blues)
Sept. 18: Bogota, Columbia (Simon Bolivar Park)
Sept. 20: Caracas, Venezuela (Poliedor Indoor)
Sept. 23: Sao Paulo, Brazil (Skol Arena)
Sept. 29-30: Buenos Aires (Obras Sanitarias)
Oct. 14: Cincinnati (US Bank Arena)
Oct. 15: Grand Rapids, Mich. (Deltaplex)
Oct. 16: Cleveland (House of Blues)
Oct. 18-19: Chicago (Congress Theater)
Oct. 21: Moline, Ill. (The Mark)
Oct. 22: Kansas City, Mo. (Freaker's Ball)
Oct. 24: Detroit (State Theatre)
Oct. 25: Toronto (Air Canada Center)
Oct. 27-28: Philadelphia (Electric Factory)
Oct. 30-31, Nov. 1: New York (Nokia Theater)
Nov. 4: Montreal (Bell Centre)
Nov. 5: Quebec City (Pepsi Arena)
Nov. 7-8: Worcester, Mass. (Palladium)
Nov. 9: Atlantic City, N.J. (House of Blues)
Nov. 11: Evansville, Ind. (Roberts Stadium)
Nov. 12: Rockford, Ill. (Metro Center)
Nov. 13: Minneapolis (Roy Wilkins)
Nov. 15: Milwaukee (Eagles Ballroom)

Tuesday, August 16, 2005

311 CD Release

Don't Tread On Me

2.5 out of 5 stars

There was a time, not long ago, before Conor Oberst and company ruled the Omaha scene. This was a time when 311 was spreading the word about "Omaha Stylee". This Rasta-rock group may not hail from that sizable midwest town anymore, but they still rule the realm when it comes to their genre.

On their eighth studio album, 311 have once again shown they can produce feel-good music that is easy on the eardrums. However, age seems to have become a factor in their latest musical effort. They don't seem to lean as much on the in-your-face rhythms that characterized hits like "Down", "Creatures (For a While)", and "Beautiful Disaster". Instead, they have mellowed much of their sound to match previous radio-friendly tracks like "Amber" and "Beyond The Gray Sky".

After giving the album a few listens, I regretfully have to say that it isn't 311's strongest work. I'm sure it will eventually grow on me, but it doesn't usually take me long to pick out what the hot tracks will be. Aside from the first single, "Don't Tread On Me", there doesn't appear to be anything that will rock the airwaves. All the same, the album flows well and should satisfy the many fans out there who have supported 311 throughout the years.

Key Tracks: Speak Easy, Whiskey & Wine, Frolic Room

Depeche Mode: Playing the Angel Track Listing

For those of you who didn't know, British new wave heroes Depeche Mode has finished recording their newest album. Playing the Angel hits a music store near you October 18, with the first single, 'Precious,' crashing radio airwaves October 4.

Playing the Angel Track Listing:

A Pain That I'm Used To
John the Revelator
Suffer Well
The Sinner in Me
I Want it All
Nothing's Impossible
Damaged People
The Darkest Star

Fiona to Finally Release New Album

Fiona Apple has finally announced a release date for her new album. On October 4 Extraordinary Machine will be available for purchase. In the years since 1999, the release year of her sophomore record, tracks from Extraordinary Machine have leaked and circulated around the internet. In response, the October 4 issue of Extraordinary Machine will be a complete rework, containing songs different from the leaked version of the album.

Sunday, August 14, 2005

Family Guy A-Ha Parody

Stereogum also posted about this: In a recent Family Guy episode they parody the 'Take On Me' video done by Norwegian synth-pop sensation A-Ha. And yes, it looks almost exactly like the original with the evil wrench-yielding guys and everything! Hilarious!! I have watched this nearly a hundred times already, and I am still laughing! You will need Windows Media Player to watch the clip here.

XM Radio Sample: XMU (College/Indie)

As an XM Satellite Radio subscriber of just over three years, I pride myself on having exclusive access to fresh artists and extensive playlists found nowhere else---well, exclusive may be an overstatement, considering that four million other people pay the $12.95/month subscription fee and share the same access I do.

Today, I decided to upgrade my 2002 receiver by purchasing a Delphi MyFi, XM's portable satellite radio player. Roughly the size of an iPod, this little gizmo can store up to 5 hrs of recorded XM material, can beam it's contents to any FM stereo and displays various stock/sports ticker information. Being both a techjunkie and audiophile, this is one of my dream inventions come true. As a treat to our very dedicated readers, I've decided to share an hour's worth of XM content found on the network's college/indie station, XMU, here in both Bittorrent format and in MP3 format. For our underground music fans, it is hoped you will find an artist or song that strikes your fancy. The track listing is as follows (Notice: may sound slightly distorted for the first 60 seconds or so):

Mobius Band ~ Multiply (TAIL END OF SONG)
XMU Promo
The Decemberists ~ We Both Go Down
Jazzupstarts ~ Moving Against Time
Aloha ~ Be Near
Fatboy Slim ~ Put it Back Together
Astaire ~ Any Other Day
XMU Promo
Hockey Night ~ Get Real
Paul Westerberg ~ Crackle and Drag
Joy Zipper ~ Valley Stream
The Beta Band ~ Simple
British Sea Power ~ Victorian Ice
The Revolutionaries ~ Binary Thoughts
XMU Promo

And You Will Know Us by the Trail of the Dead ~ The Lost City of Refuge
M.I.A. ~ Bucky Done Gun
Bloc Party ~ She's Hearing Voices
Mixel Pixel ~ Body Automatic
XMU Promo

Stay tuned for future samples of other sweet XM channels.

Saturday, August 13, 2005

Radiohead To Donate Song For Charity

The British rock group, Radiohead, has recently offered their musical talents to the charitable organization War Child. This will not be the first time that Radiohead has aided the charity. On the previous album, Help, Radiohead recorded the song Lucky. The new charity album will be entitled Help: A Day In The Life

In an effort to raise money for the charity, the compilation album will be for sale Sept. 9 on the website A physical CD will be released soon after. In addition to Radiohead's song, there will be new music from notable artists The Zutons, Gorillaz, Manic Street Preachers, Bloc Party, Elbow, Maximo Park, and many more.

Each artist will be asked to record their music in a single day. It is uncertain whether Radiohead may donate a brand new song or one that has been previously written.

Friday, August 12, 2005

Artist Spotlight: Editors

Out of the recent barrage of bands choosing to bring back the sounds of Gang of Four and Joy Division, U.K.'s Editors might be one of the darkest, most ambitious acts to emerge. Upon first listen, the band easily fits in with the likes of Franz Ferdinand or Interpol, however, Editors seem to deserve more than to simply be shrugged off as copycats. The Birmingham quartet is able to pay homage to a variety of influences, while still maintaining their own intelligence and ideals for songwriting - melding together energetic rhythms with melodies that are as haunting as they are catchy. The dry vocals drape lyrics over the whole framework, drawing many comparisons to the tortured mind of the late Ian Curtis.
For a young band, Editors have wasted no time in gaining the interest of U.K. radio and media. Following several attention-grabbing singles, such as 'Munich' and 'Blood', the band's full-length album, The Back Room, was released in the U.K. on July 25th on Kitchenware Records with a limited edition expanded album due August 16th.

Madonna Reverting to Club-Friendly Format With Tenth Album

Remember when Madonna used to be a dance diva? With 1983's self-titled major label debut, the artist whose name means "Mother Mary" initially established herself as a hit club single production machine. Songs such as 'Lucky Star,' 'Borderline,' 'Holiday' and even the Like a Virgin carry-over tune 'Dress You Up' all came to define the sometimes voluptuous vocalist as the reigning 1980s Queen of the Discos. Yet, after the immense success of the less synthy and more poppy Like a Virgin disc, Madonna seemed to stray from her roots, recording mundane pop ballads for movies such as A League of Their Own and Evita, along with a string of much more experimental and serious tunage. Sure, the turn of the 80s saw the release of electronica-oriented 'Vogue' and 'Express Yourself,' but for the most part Madonna's timeshare in the Western dance venue had expired by the early 90s, with no thoughts of renewal in the mix.

Now, with her tenth album just leaving the works, it is said that Confessions on a Dancefloor will be returning Madonna to her roots. Slated for a November 15 release, the artist has dubbed her newest sound "future disco." (It can only be presumed that "future disco" is 100 times better than "old disco.") Described by latest producer Stuart Price, the album's first single is "a big feel-good song. You put it on and you want to get in your car, turn it up and drive around smiling." The newest synth-pop selection is entitled 'Hung Up.'

But Madonna and Price weren't entirely confident, at first, in a return to the rave scene:
"There's a bit of a danger with dance music that you can create something that's cool but doesn't have much substance to it," he admits. "Every few months, a club record comes along that hits a nerve with people, and they connect to it. They don't know why, but there is something magical in it. That's what we were trying to make. [Stuart Price]"

Will Confessions on a Dancefloor be magical? As a guilty Madonna fan, I hope so.

Thursday, August 11, 2005

She Don't Like the Drugs, but the Drugs Like Her

Favorite Lonely Note punching bag Courtney Love has failed a recent drug test. Just days after she had told the media that she had been "clean and sober for over a year," Love's drug test failings translate into a violation of her February probation handed down to her for assaulting another woman.

It could also mean she will lose custody once again of daughter Frances Bean Cobain, her 12 year old child with the late Kurt Cobain.

Courtney Love: great singer, great mother, great all-around person.

Rising Jazz Star Cullum

If you like jazz, then you'll love Jamie Cullum. The UK songwriter will be releasing his third feature album in late September. Titled Catching Tales, its first single is called 'Get Your Way.' In the same vein as Harry Connick Jr., Norah Jones and Amy Winehouse, Jamie Cullum evokes refined sentiments and is one of contemporary jazz's rising stars.

Find out more here.

Richard Patrick + DeLeo Bros. = New Band?

For the last month, rumors have been surfacing that Robert and Dean DeLeo of Stone Temple Pilots and Filter's Richard Patrick are working together in a new band.
7/13 - Richard has been complimenting Dean's guitar playing in recent interviews, even calling him one of his three favorite guitarists ever, and in a recent posting on the official FILTER web site, Patrick makes a comment about rehearsing with his new band, whom he has shared the stage with only once before.

STP fansite Below Empty has kept on the edge of all the latest information, and yesterday posted the following:
According to a message posted by the webmaster of the forums on the 'Diamond David Lee Roth' website, drummer Ray Luzier from David Lee Roth's band has teamed up with Robert and Dean DeLeo and Filter frontman Richard Patrick to form a new band. According to the posting, the newly formed band have signed with Columbia Records and are managed by The Firm.

Another posting by Ray Luzier on his own website is just as cryptic as the one from Richard Patrick on the Filter site last month:

"*I have some BIG NEWS: I've joined an amazing new band that I'm very proud to be a member of... details coming soon, stay tuned!

From the information I've found, none of this has been confirmed, however, a number of rock radio station sites are talking about it as well. We'll see how things progress. Updates to come...

Scary Kids Scaring Kids

Emitting sounds simlar to bands like Lost Prophets, The Used and Glassjaw, Scary Kids Scaring Kids is busting free from their Arizona dustbowl town of Gilbert and into the mainstream. Their album is entitled The City Sleeps In Flames, and it has been described as "indulg[ing] in new wave's careless spirit, post-hardcore's lacerating dynamics, and the moody atmospherics of heady guitar rock bands." Bored? SKSK is worth at least a once-over.

Check out the band's website here.

Wednesday, August 10, 2005

Paul Anka - Rock Swings

Paul Anka - Rock Swings
4.0 out of 5 stars

Pop vocalist Paul Anka is no stranger to a good show tune here or there. In the 1950s the Canadian sensation was a teen idol to many and today is notable for penning many a hit for such artists as Buddy Holly, Donny Osmond and Tom Jones to name only a few. He also wrote the theme to the Tonight Show, a song millions of Americans heard nightly for 30 years.

Combining his nearly half-decade long experience in American show business with his acute instincts for "good music," Anka is back in 2005 with his very own album showcasing favorite American rock hits. Known as Rock Swings, the cover disc was first featured in Rolling Stone several issues ago. While that music publication claims Rock Swings is "far less annoying than a Cherry Poppin' Daddies record," it is certainly deserving of much better praise. Sure, such swing renditions of songs like Bon Jovi's 'It's My Life' and Van Halen's 'Jump' are saucy Las Vegas rip-offs. But tunes such as Oasis's 'Wonderwall' and Lionel Richie's 'Hello' illustrate the versatility and inherent greatness of a truly good song.

For someone who needs a Nirvana fix, but wishes to maintain his aura of sophistication in front of a hot date, Rock Swings is for him. For the manic-depressive who wants to hear some Soundgarden without being pushed over the edge, Rock Swings is for him too. Hell, when you think about it, Rock Swings is for anybody who appreciates music for music's sake.

God Bless Rock Swings, and God Bless Paul Anka.

Track Listing:
1. It's My Life
2. True
3. Eye of the Tiger
4. Everybody Hurts
5. Wonderwall
6. Blackhole Sun
7. It's a Sin
8. Jump
9. Smells Like Teen Spirit
10. Hello
11. Eyes Without a Face
12. Lovecats
13. Way You Make Me Feel
14. Tears in Heaven

Paul Anka - Rock Swings torrent file

Tuesday, August 09, 2005

O'Connor Calling All of Jah's People

Two years after she claimed she was done with the music business, Sinead O'Connor will be breaking her promise to the world when she releases a reggae album this fall. The disc Throw Down Your Arms will feature twelve reggae covers upon its debut October 4.

"The originals of these songs could never be bettered, and so all I can hope in recording them, is to honor the composers, and pass on their teachings, in the hope that doing so will carry the message of Rastafarai to some who might otherwise not know that God and religion are two very different things. [Sinead O'Connor]"

Whether or not the currently skinheaded O'Connor will grow dreads is at this point undetermined.

Elbow Readies New CD/DVD for September

Elbow is already set to release the follow-up to last year's Cast of Thousands album. The U.K. band's third LP, titled Leaders of the Free World, is due out in their homeland September 5th, to be trailed by a Sept. 27th U.S. date.

First single "Forget Myself" will be released Aug. 29 in the United Kingdom on two separate CD singles and 7-inch vinyl, backed by three non-album tracks and a cover of Indigo Jones' "My Finger."

In the United Kingdom, initial versions of the album will be complimented by a DVD with music videos for each of its 11 songs. According to Elbow's Web site, "the films were developed alongside the album recording process rather than commissioned" after the fact. The visuals were supplied by the Soup Collective.

In related news, the band's arch-nemesis, Kneecap, has pushed its own release date ahead in an effort to counterstrike...just kidding.

Monday, August 08, 2005

Black Rebel Motorcycle Club Vid

Their new single is entitled 'Ain't No Easy Way,' and their new album is called Howl. Check out Black Rebel Motorcycle Club's video for 'Ain't No Easy Way' here.

Chris Paul Richards, Master of Truncation

Chris Paul Richards, formerly of the now defunct Q & Not U, is venturing into a new solo career. Now known as Ris Paul Ric (a truncation of his real name), the former guitar/syth/bass player of Q & Not U has recorded self-described "quieter" material. In fact, one can download his new song here.

In a Spin interview Richards not only explains the hows and whys of his newest work, but the demise of Q & Not U as well:

We just got to the end of our collective ambition. We just reached a point where we had achieved everything we wanted to together and we didn't want to pull people along further than they wanted to go, or slow people down, so we thought it would be best to just get off the train while we still felt good about it. We did what we set out to do. More than we set out to do, really. We were just a basement, fun-time, weekend thing, and it just kind of took us on a crazy seven-year trip.

A brief tour has already begun. Here are the August dates:

8/6, Pittsburgh, PA (Modern Formations Gallery)
8/8, Chicago, IL (Spare Room Gallery)
8/9, Cleveland, OH (Pat's in the Flats)
8/11, Richmond, VA (Children's Museum of Richmond)
8/12, Baltimore, MD (Current Gallery)
8/13, Philadelphia, PA (Space 1026)
8/14, New York, NY (Knitting Factory)
8/15, New York, NY (169 Bar)

Sunday, August 07, 2005

New Staind Out Tuesday

Shoe-gazers Staind are beginning a new chapter of their lives. Chapter 5 to be exact. On Tuesday, 'Chapter V,' the band's fifth album (if you count Tormented) will be available for purchase. One reviewer claims that the "acoustic guitars have been set aside," meaning this newest album is to be much harder and electrified than the previous ones.

Saturday, August 06, 2005

D.F.A.1979 back in the S.T.U.D.I.O.2005

Death From Above 1979, a band which I reviewed in April are keeping busy these days. Not only is the Canadian rock duo currently touring Europe, but they will be heading back into the studio on September 1st to work on the follow up to 2004's You're a Woman, I'm a Machine.

“We are just writing it,” bass/synth player Jesse F. Keeler tells “The new album will come out in March, but we will be done with it in December.” The group plans on releasing the first single in the U.K. in January, but isn't prepared to dish out any track titles just yet."
“It will probably be 10 songs long and ... epic.”

In mid-October, DFA 1979 will take a brief break from recording to open 20 dates on the Nine Inch Nails/Queens Of The Stone Age tour.

If you get the chance to go see one of those shows, I would highly recommend you do so.

Weiland Threatens to Play 'Fall to Pieces' on Upcoming Ozzfest Tour

Music magazine Metal Edge, known for its tremendous writing and premium content (on second thought, not so much), conducted an interview with Velvet Revolver frontman Scott Weiland recently. VR will be playing on the upcoming Ozzfest tour, and Scotty decided to elaborate on just that.

More or less, if anything is to be retained from this Pulitzer-worthy music news article, it is that Velvet Revolver ISN'T afraid to play 'Fall to Pieces' at the metal fest.

You can find out exactly what I mean and read the entire article excerpt here.

Friday, August 05, 2005

Drive Safe: Sing Your Little Head Off

Good news for this guy. According to a new survey, singing while you drive may actually make you a safer driver. Conducted for a British insurance agency, researchers at the University of Sheffield probed the minds of 1,780 drivers to find that 63% of those who hadn't had an accident in 4+ years also listened to music while driving. Dr. Nicola Dibben, a music psychologist at Sheffield U, made the following statements regarding dashboard divas:

"Singing while driving stimulates not only the mind but also the body which, in turn, produces heightened alertness and reduced fatigue," she explained to the newspaper. "Singing may be less distracting than conversation because drivers recall words to songs they already know, or because it is fairly easy to learn the words to music where it uses repeated lyrics."

The article then goes on to discuss which types of music are best for driving. Supposedly dance music isn't highly recommended, but in my non-professional opinion, if you ever find yourself pulling an all-nighter across some really desolate state, electronica works wonders. Here's some lists that the experts want you to stay informed of:

Top three best driving tunes:

* "They Can't Take That Away From Me," by Frank Sinatra
* "Don't Cha Wanna Ride," by Joss Stone
* "Canon in D," by Pachelbel

Three tunes to avoid while driving:

* "Pomp and Circumstance March No. 1," by Edward Elgar
* "Firestarter," by Prodigy
* "Kim," by Eminem

...So, there you have it. How awesome is it that "Firestarter" and "Pomp & Circumstance" are both examples of what NOT to listen to? Especially when I never drive anywhere without my copy of "Pomp" on hand. I'm lucky to be alive!

Thursday, August 04, 2005

Catching up with Pearl Jam

Last week, Pearl Jam was named top American rock band by readers of USA Today's Pop Candy. This week, guitarist Mike McCready answers fans' questions by way of email. Read all of his responses here.

What can you tell the fans about the new album and the next tour in North America? — Kasey Lawson, Murfreesboro, Tenn.

The new album is about halfway done. It sounds incredible. Ed (Vedder) is singing like I have never heard. He has raised the bar on all the songs. I think we all have pushed each other to make (dare I say) a really classic and rockin' album. There's no release date set for the record or the tour yet, but we hope to be out playing in the States next year.

Multi-faceted Kasabian Able to Perform AND Model....At the Same Time!

Almost a real life parallel to evil Mugatu's Derelict campaign in the motion picture Zoolander, fashion company Prada is currently targeting indie rock quartet Kasabian as one of its "new faces." Apparently the dirty, desperate rocker look is all the rage in Italy right now.

Wednesday, August 03, 2005

Metallica, Rolling Stones to Deliver One-Two Punch

In a message sent to fan members, metal Gods Metallica have announced today they will be opening for the Rolling Stones in San Francisco November 13 and November 15. The shows, to be held at San Francisco's SBC Park, will be sure to provide an enormous wealth of entertainment for the seasoned rock music fan. Metallica themselves are quite excited:

"After having the thrill of playing with some of our personal heroes such as AC/DC, Deep Purple, Iron Maiden and Ozzy (Osbourne), how could we say 'no' to the quintessential rock band, who are in some way responsible for all of this?" the band said in the email.

"These two shows are about nothing other than having fun and playing music ... nothing to sell, nothing to promote, nothing to talk about ... Simply put, this is the reason we started a band 25 or so years ago, and we are psyched and appreciative of this awesome opportunity to get cracking again..."

For those of you fortunate enough to attend one of these sure-to-be great shows, be sure to thank your lucky stars.

Pumpkins Reborn?

Rumours of a Smashing Pumpkins rekindling have been rife these past few weeks, after frontman Billy Corgan made public how much he missed his old band. However, confirmation that the band will reform has come from Pumpkins drummer Jimmy Chamberlin whilst on tour promoting his new outfit, The Jimmy Chamberlin Complex. Chamberlin stopped off at the Archer in Newcastle to host a drum clinic, and somewhere between offering existential music guidance and performing a solo version of Geek U.S.A. (only drums, no accompanyment), he announced that the Chicago veterans would be getting back together and aiming to tour in February 2006.

Chamberlin went on to state that the Smashing Pumpkins would not be doing "a greatest hits tour [...] we're not after your money" and that the band would work on new songs to take on the road, with the possibility of an album to ensue.
In polite discussion with his fans after the clinic, Chamberlin said that contact had been made with the two estranged former-Pumpkins James Iha and D'arcy Wretsky via e-mail, but that Corgan and himself were awaiting confirmation as to their participation. He also said that the tour would probably go ahead regardless of whether Iha and D'arcy are involved.

Another One of those Block Rockin' Beats

Electronica artists The Chemical Brothers, Paul Oakenfold and Timo Maas will be conducting one of the world's largest raves when they play ULTRA.NY September 16 in New York's Central Park. It is allegedly the first show of its kind to take place in the greenspace.

Tuesday, August 02, 2005

Sponge - 'Wax Ecstatic'

Wax Ecstatic (To Sell Angelina)
Wax Ecstatic

In our lives there are moments or periods of time that we associate memory with music. Everytime you hear a particular song, it takes you right back to relive an event in your past. For me, this is one of those songs.

Sponge emerged out of Detroit in the early 90s, breaking out with 1994's Rotting Pinata, which gained them radio play with such singles as 'Plowed' and 'Molly(16 candles).' The very underrated band basically got thrown into the cluster of grunge era bandwagoners, with many critics dismissing them as a ripoff of Stone Temple Pilots. But what separated Sponge was their sense of down-and-dirty Motor City rock n roll that defined acts like KISS, Nugent, Iggy Pop, MC5, etc, etc. On the band's '96 sophomore effort, Wax Ecstatic, the band decided to expand their sound away from grunge more. Having already achieved some moderate success with Rotting Pinata, they chose to focus more on honing their 1970s roots, mixing in handfuls of glam-rock and blues, with enough anthems to fill an arena. While somewhat experimental, the album had a definite edge, able to pack a punch. The title track, 'Wax Ecstatic(To Sell Angelina)', was released as a single, but didn't draw enough attention to keep the band on the charts, and they were dropped by their Columbia record label shortly thereafter. The band tried to bounce back by signing to a new label and releasing New Pop Sunday in 1999, but couldn't keep afloat. The band underwent severe lineup changes, but with frontman Vinnie Dombrowski at the helm, Sponge added new members and released For All the Drugs in the World in 2003 on a smaller label. A new album, Hard to Keep My Cool has been slated for a summer 2005 release for some time, but I haven't heard any more updates, or whether it is out already. While not achieving a lot of national attention lately, the band has maintained its position as one of the most well-received, hardest rocking bands in Detroit Rock City today.

The song 'Wax Ecstatic(To Sell Angelina)' has always held firm as one of the most defining songs of my youth. I was in 7th grade when the song came out, and instantly fell in love with it, buying the album as soon as I could find it. Fellow Lonely Note Contributor Ted and myself have been friends for almost a decade, and we both remember listening to 'Wax Ecstatic' the first time we hung out together. Those are the kinds of memories that stick with you, and often times explain our love for particular songs and albums. As just one of my personal favorite songs, I'll surely be posting on others in the future.

'Wax Ecstatic' opens with an infectious, squealing guitar hook that becomes the backbone for the song. Driving rhythms get your blood pumping while the guitars wail away. Dombrowski's roughened vocals are still capable of being glammy and melodic. Lyrically, the song is gritty, like a cracked-out infomercial, claiming to cure all of your problems with a tiny pill. It kind of reminds me of the infomercials in the film Requiem for Dream. The uptempo song chugs ahead, barely willing to compromise time for a guitar solo. The song ends by spastically spinning itself into fuzzy distortion, and repeatedly calling out its name as it fades away almost as quickly as it had gained momentum. Sponge's Detroit upbringing shows strong on 'Wax Ecstatic.'

When things just aren't going your way
Like a problem hair that you pluck or shave?
But shaving got to be such a bore
and you deserve so much more
and happiness is just a purchase away

Angelina, it'll fix your hunchback
Angelina, it'll help your time pass
Angelina, here's a forecast
Angelina, it's science we never laugh

Here's something that is automatic
It's Wax Ecstatic
When life is nothing less than tragic
It's Wax Ecstatic
When life has lost all it's magic
It's Wax Ecstatic
When life can't promise the fantastic
It's Wax Ecstatic

Throw all your troubles away
you've got nothing left that you want to save
With this circus you'll need nothing more
and all your troubles walk out the door
and it's all just a phone call away

Angelina, it'll fix your hunchback
Angelina, it'll help your time pass
Angelina, here's a forecast
Angelina, it's science we never laugh

Here's something that is automatic
It's Wax Ecstatic
When life is nothing less than tragic
It's Wax Ecstatic
When life has lost all it's magic
It's Wax Ecstatic
When life can't promise the fantastic
It's Wax Ecstatic