I have a confession to make...I am just now watching Arrested Development for the first time! I know you might find it hard to believe. How could I have gone all these years without watching this amazing television show? How did I even get through each day without the Bluth family? I feel somewhat personally responsible for getting it canceled. Maybe it would still be on TV if I had actually watched it when it originally aired. But three seasons might be the perfect length for this show -- I don't know how it could have possibly remained as hilarious this many years later. Arrested Development is just one of those absolutely perfect shows. I just can't imagine a better script and I can't imagine more perfect casting! The set up of the show is brilliant. It is seriously the funniest thing I have ever seen! I am just so glad that is is finally in my life. I am currently in the middle of Season 3 and I am actually trying to spread it out and make it last. I know that some of my friends are jealous of me that I am watching it for the first time -- they wish they could go back and have that experience again! I will most definitely be watching the entire series over again at some point in the future but there is just nothing like that first time. I am also sort of amazed how I didn't even really know that much about the show. I knew Jason Bateman was the star. I knew it had something to do with some rich father getting sent to prison and how his family dealt with it. I knew Ellen's girlfriend was on the show. I knew at some point Justine Bateman shows up on the show (which I am still patiently waiting for). But I had no idea that Michael Cera was on AD! I had no idea that Alia Shawkat plays the daughter Maybe! She is by far one of my favorite characters. Just absolutely brilliant! Liza Minnelli also pops in some of the best episodes as the neighbor. I had no idea the show was narrated by Ron Howard either! One of my other favorite characters is Buster. I didn't even know who Tony Hale was before the show but he is just plain perfect and hilarious as Buster. I guess I didn't even ever check out their IMDB page. I just didn't know. I am a bit mad nobody told me how brilliant this show was. Maybe I just wasn't listening. I had heard it was funny but I really needed somebody to sit me down and look me straight in the eye and say, "No, really, this show is simply the most brilliant and hilarious thing ever on television." So I am telling you now -- if you have not seen this show, you simply must watch it! Put down your True Blood and Dexter! Put aside your Glee, 30 Rock and The Office! Take a break from your Housewives and reality shows! You must watch this show!
I don't want to give away too much more about AD. It is best to just jump right into it without knowing everything about it. At the heart of the show is David Cross. Everyone probably has their favorite character. I guess I actually love them all -- but I think David Cross might be just barely at the top of the list. But Jessica Walter is actually brilliant as well as the mother of the show. Hopefully you have seen her in the Clint Eastwood film Play Misty For Me. It is one of my favorite movies ever! David Cross plays the husband of the daughter on the show. His name is Tobias Funke. Brilliant. David Cross has a career outside of Arrested Development, of course. He has just put out his newest comedy album on Sub Pop -- Bigger and Blackerer is out on both CD and DVD. I still have not had a chance to watch the DVD yet, but the album is, of course, hilarious! I love listening to comedy albums when I am driving. I have been listening to the new Brian Posehn album a lot lately too, but now I am happy to have something else to check out. It does make me look crazy when I am driving and cracking up, but I don't care! Try it on your headphones as well! Laughing is good for you. David Cross is good for you. David Cross is hilarious!
Here are some audio clips from the new album Bigger & Blackerer by David Cross...
Buy the new album Bigger & Blackerer by David Cross
I really wish that Crystal Castles would have consulted me about this new album of theirs. It sounds fantastic and the artwork is amazing and easily my pick for favorite album cover of the year...but the title is not so great. Crystal Castles is the unimaginative title. Again. This was the name of the first album. Coming up with an album title seems like such a fun thing to do -- it really is just about matching up words into phrases that have not yet existed, or there are always the one word titles as well, but it is harder to find that one word that has not been used yet. I do like the phrase Crystal Castles. It hadn't been used yet as far as I know and I like the way the words sound together and I have no problem with naming your first album the same name as your band name. When you come up with a great name you want to use it twice, I get it. And it is easy for fans to remember. You can say "Have you heard the new Crystal Castles album?" or "Did you get the Crystal Castles album?" And you could be referring to the artist or the album. But at that point there is only one album and it's all the same thing. When you put out your second album, however, it really is your time to shine. If you are too lazy or just keep fighting over the album title, then just go with one of the song titles. "Celestica," "Fainting Spells," or even "Pap Smear" would have all been great album titles. Or they even could have named the album Crystal Castles 2 or Album II or just 2. Or how about Crystal Castles...One More Time? There is also always the option of naming your album a 20 word sentence, something you know will not fit on record store computer screens -- a title that will not even fit on the spine of the CD. A title that will inevitably have to end with "..." But not the Crystal Castles. They have just decided to name their second album Crystal Castles once again. I am sure they had their reasons. They probably just did it to piss off their label and record stores and bloggers. I am sure they just don't really care, although if I had an interview with them this is the first question that I would ask them. And I am sure they hate that question -- but really, all you had to do was actually give your album a name and that problem would not have occurred! I am almost positive their third album will also be called Crystal Castles! Regardless of all this nonsense, the album is great. It's weird and dancey just like it should be, and they have matured a bit. Just like on the first album, there are some songs here that you are going to want to listen to over and over again. I sort of think of them as future music. They sound like what I would have imagined this type of music to sound like today 10 years ago, if that makes sense. I can't get enough of this album. Crystal Castles are a weirder and more intense version of Ladytron. I like to think of them as a cross between Aphex Twin and Kylie Minogue. I am renaming the album Pap Smear, on my computer at least -- it's one of my favorite songs on the album! They should have just left the album name blank with a spot to write in your own choice for the album name. Has anybody done that before? Maybe the next one...
Listen to "Pap Smear" from the new album Crystal Castles by Crystal Castles...
Buy the new album Crystal Castles by Crystal Castles
also out 5/18...
Infinite Arms by Band of Horses
Brothers by Black Keys
People's Record by Club 8
Spirit Youth by Depreciation Guild
New Traditionalists reissue by Devo
Duran Duran: Special Edition by Duran Duran
Seven & the Ragged Tiger: Special Edition by Duran Duran
This Is Happening by LCD Soundsystem
Arachandroid by Janelle Monae
Exile On Main Street: Deluxe Edition by The Rolling Stones
Amsterdam Throwdown by Solex Vs Cristina Martinez
Controversial Negro reissue by Jon Spencer Blues Explosion
Now I Got Worry reissue by Jon Spencer Blues Explosion
Love & Its Opposite by Tracey Thorn
also out 5/25...
Ghost Who Walks by Karen Elson
Soft Return by Grovesnor
Splash by Jeremy Jay
Interpretations by Bettye Lavette
Family Jewels by Marina & the Diamonds
Micmacs Original Score
Soundtrack by Modern English
Angelic Swells by Neverever
Melted by Ty Segall
Teargarden Vol. 1 by Smashing Pumpkins
Subject to Shift by Solvent
Great Western Laymen by Rudi Zygadlo