Amoeblog

Happy Australia Day

Posted by Eric Brightwell, January 26, 2008 09:23am | Post a Comment
  
The Flag of Australia                                             The Australian Aboriginal Flag        The Flag of Torres Strait Islanders


Australia was discovered about 45,000 years ago when they either walked or made short sea-crossings from Papua to the north in what is now the Torres Strait. In Australia they grew into diverse cultures with around 250 languages spoken by nations such as the Koori, Murri, Noongar, Yamatji, Wangkai, Nunga, Anagu, Yapa, Yolngu and Palawah, who together may've numbered around 3 quarters of a million.  43,830 years later (give or take a few thousand) it was claimed, like a quarter of the planet, by the tiny, faraway island of Great Britain.


   
Initially, it served as a penal colony set up at Port Jackson on January 26, 1788, which is why it's Australia Day today. 50% of the indigenous population died from smallpox within the following years. Massacres and land seizures reduced the indigenous population another 30%. Often the convicts sent to Australia were charged with minor offenses. In the 1850s, the Gold Rush began and with it, an Americanization of the language. For example, "bonanza" (borrowed from Spanish) became "bonzer." By 1827, Australian English was already diverging significantly from British English. Author Peter Cunningham noted a distinct vocabulary and a non-rhotic accent that owed heavily to Cockney. It is typically divided into three accents which owe less to region than UK English or US English.

      Broad: Exemplified by larrikins Paul “g’day mate” Hogan, Steve “crikey” Irwin.
      General: The typical Australian of Cate Blanchett, Russell Crowe and Nicole Kidman.
      Cultivated: The British-sounding manner of Geoffrey Rush or Judy Davis.

None of the examples above probably say "shrimp on the barbie" since "shrimp" are called "prawns" in Australia.
     
Most of the wildlife and plant life is endemic. It's the flattest country on Earth, mostly desert and covered with the least fertile soil. It seems like wherever you go in the world, you run into loads of Australians. Luckily, they all have multizone DVD players.

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Shoundtrack of Shame

Posted by Job O Brother, January 25, 2008 07:19pm | Post a Comment
As promised, here's the next installment in my new series: songs I absolutely love that I am ashamed of absolutely loving.


Norway's most popular export since... urr... eh....

Many of you are familiar with a-Ha's hit, "Take On Me". In fact - I'm going to say it - ALL of you are familiar with a-Ha's hit, "Take On Me". The video for the song is well-loved, and considered a rare gem in a genre that is all too often unremarkable (that is, music videos). But there's a sister video to it, and it features a song so over-wrought with romanticism that even Sandra Bullock would think twice before being associated with it. Even so, as predisposed as I am to disliking romance in my art, I - for whatever reason - swoon like a third grade girl whenever I hear a-Ha's lesser hit, "The Sun Always Shines On TV".

Below, you'll find the video. It strikes me as odd that the object of the singer's affection is a middled-aged woman in a bathrobe (...or is that just 80's "fashion"?). When watching, please take note of the "Channel 3" logo and tell me - is that not something you've seen scrawled on a men's room wall?

Anyway, I can poke fun all I want. I still love this silly thing. Feel free to beat me up after gym class...

Misty Mountain Hop - Why I Love Black Mountain

Posted by Miss Ess, January 25, 2008 11:28am | Post a Comment
Just wanted to say that Black Mountain's new album In the Future is fantastic!  I love a real rock n roll band, especially these days, since so few exist anymore. 

black mountain amber webber steven mcbean

They have a heavy sound with tons of drums and lots of hot vocal vibrato.  Bands that have many different lead singers rule (i.e: The Beatles, The Band), and Black Mountain has the added bonus not-so-secretblack mountain amber webber weapon of Amber Webber and her super powerful voice.  The sheer confidence of her vocals remind me of none other than Grace Slick at times.  This gal won't bwayne's world wayne and garthack down and she knows how to wail! (Yeah, I just quoted Wayne's World, so sue me.)  I love how they trade off vocals during the songs.  It just adds to the overall intensity of the sound.  And it's intense, people, really.

The band is from Vancouver.  Don't we all just love Canadians? Well, I do anyway. Their first, self titled record really caught my ear a few years back-- catchy but loud as all hell crazy Zep-esque songs with  some kamikaze chops to boot!  It's truly a great record and I kept it in my cd player for months on end when it came out.  Hardly anyone puts out good effin' rock music, and these guys are tops as far black mountain steven mcbeanas those who are trying to keep it alive.  I think this new record cements that for me.

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January 25, 2008

Posted by phil blankenship, January 25, 2008 10:11am | Post a Comment

MARKETING FORMULA FOR RAMBO BOX OFFICE SUCCESS

Posted by Billyjam, January 25, 2008 06:00am | Post a Comment

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About a month ago when I first started seeing the poster (above) advertising the brand-new Sylvester Stallone Rambo movie, that opens in theaters today, my eyes were just drawn to its strong imagery.
I immediately thought to myself, Wow, what a really great poster, admiring its simple yet powerful, black-on-white stencil silhouette image of Rambo.

No clutter like most movie posters, just that burning image of our hero Rambo -- underneath the actor's last name spelled out in attention-grabbing bold red capital letters. Despite its basic retro simplicity, it was instantly memorable and for some reason seemed so subliminally familiar.

But how? Why?  Well, about a week ago I think I figured it out when I read an interview with Tim Palen from the marketing department at Lions Gate (fhe company banking on the film being a big hit). He stated as a matter-of-fact that the poster, which had been very shrewdly designed for the marketplace, was a carefully structured combo of familiar icons.

"We called it Che Guevara crossed with Jesus Christ by way of Andy Warhol,” he told the New York Times, adding about the Rambo character, that, “In a way, he’s all of those.” 

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