Long Beach’s Avi Buffalo comes back after four years with a great new album, At Best Cuckold. Opening track “So What” reveals gleaming guitars and casually brattiness that shows Avigdor Zahner-Isenberg and his band cleaning up some of the psych clutter from their still excellent debut in favor of a streamlined sound, but they’re still weirdos at heart. Serpentine lullaby “Memories of You” softly jangles with country-rock guitars, proggy touches and funny lyrics like “bitch I’m on fire…I’m a cheeseball on fire.” It speaks to the band’s ability to reference classic bands while putting out their own vibe. It’s hard to pull off a “Here Comes a Regular”-style vulnerable acoustic-guitar song like “Two Cherished Understand,” and Avi Buffalo does it by keeping it short, sweet and ultimately unique. Part of that uniqueness comes from Zahner-Isenberg’s way with a non sequitur—“I ran over two dogs, then I ate them after,” he admits amid a fizzy Western backdrop on “Think It’s Gonna Happen Again.” And he gives the best breakup line of the year on “Oxygen Tank,” singing, “A man carrying an oxygen tank is gonna come kill me and my family too if I don’t stop seeing you.” The Flaming Lips comparison still haunts them a bit, yet these songs still have personality for days, so who cares, ultimately. “These birds seem so fucking free/they're nothing compared to me” Zahner-Isenberg sings faux-sweetly on “Overwhelmed With Pride,” and it’s tough not to believe him. Avi Buffalo will be at Amoeba SF Sept. 12 at 6 p.m. and Amoeba Hollywood Sept. 17 at 6 p.m.
Yeah Yeah Yeahs frontwoman Karen O has a new video for the song "Rapt," which will be on her forthcoming first solo album, Crush Songs. You can download the song now on Amoeba.com, and you can preorder the album on LP now.
Directed by her husband, Barney Clay, the gorgeous video shows Karen O underwater in slow motion, occasionally illuminated and sometimes obscured. I recommend pausing every now and then; each shot seemingly could be an impressionist painting.
Check out the video below:
The acoustic, dreamy "Rapt" can be found on Crush Songs, which will be released Sept. 9 via Julian Casablancas' label, Cult. Read Karen O's description of her new album in a note she wrote below, via her website:
What a perfect love connection! The Creators Project comes to San Francisco—the world’s epicenter of technology and innovation— for a colossal two-day art and technology festival featuring towering multimedia art installations, live music performances, film screenings, and panel discussions. They will be kicking off the 2012 event series with a heck of a weekend celebration on Saturday, March 17th and Sunday, March 18th at the historic Fort Mason. And it's FREE with RSVP!!
Now get a load of the line-up for this weekend of fun:
Yeah Yeah Yeahs bring the post-punk rock from beloved creators Nick Zinner and Karen O, fresh off their recent psycho-opera collaboration, Stop the Virgens.
Squarepusher debuts his new live show, marking one of his first US performances in more than seven years.
HEALTH, The Antlers, Zola Jesus, Shabazz Palaces, The Hundred in the Hands, and Teen Daze will also perform, plus an audiovisual spectacle from Chinese punk rock band New Pants alongside visuals from Feng Mengbo’s Bruce Lee VJ Project.
The filmmakers and the band will be there in person for a post-show party DJ-ed by N.A.S.A.!!!
A look behind the making of N.A.S.A.’s globetrotting debut album, The Spirit of Apollo, featuring a truly staggering array of talent: David Byrne, Karen O, Tom Waits, Kool Keith, Nick Zinner, Lykke Li, M.I.A., Kanye West, George Clinton, Chuck D, Seu Jorge, and the RZA. The movie features design and animation collaborations by Syd Garon, Shepard Fairey, Splunny, Sage Vaughn, Marcel Dzama, The Date Farmers, Logan, Didiu Rio Branco, Three Legged Legs and Lorenzo Fonda.
It is sometimes easy for me to get excited about a movie, but there haven't really been a lot of movies to get excited about the last couple of months-- and finally Where the Wild Things Are is right around the corner! I have been extremely excited about this movie ever since I first heard about it, from the first time I saw a poster for it online, and then the first time I saw a teaser trailer. I finally saw a more substantial trailer last week before the movie 9. I didn't think I could get more excited, but I did! And I know I am not alone. Millions of us grew up with this story. It was a pretty simple picture book. Hardly any words at all in the "story." It was mostly just the amazing drawings that captured our imagination and forever made us fall in love with this story. I have probably not looked at the book in at least 10 years or so. I remember looking through the book at a a bookstore a while ago, and at the time I don't think I had seen the book since I owned it as a kid, but somehow the memories were always still there. The feelings I had when I first experienced the story never really went away. That was the power of this story. I remember even being excited about the Where The Wild Things Are themed restaurant that opened up in the Metreon in San Francisco. It closed years ago but maybe they will bring it back now. The Where the Wild Things Are book first came out in 1963. It was written by the brilliant Maurice Sendak. I don't think he ever could have imagined the book would have had such a profound affect on generation after generation. I think the book and story will get an even larger following after the release of this movie, although I have yet to meet anyone who didn't at least read this book when they were young. The story is simple enough. A kid, Max, is banished to his room for bad behavior. He then enters a magical world of big furry monsters, all in his imagination, of course. Similar stories had been told before and they would continue to be reimagined, but something about the drawings really brought me into the story. It was a magical little story that all children could relate to. Max of course gets lonely and ends up returning to his normal life. But we all had moments like that when we wanted to escape from our families into a magical world of make believe.
The book was made into an animated short in 1973. An updated version was made in 1988 with new music and narration. Spike Jonze has created the new live action film. Maurice Sendak had been trying to get this film made since the early 90s. Sendak fell in love with Being John Malkovich and then decided he wanted Spike Jonze to direct. It makes sense. So Spike has been working on it for almost 10 years. It has been a long time coming and I am glad the time has finally arrived. I am already in love with the film from the trailer. I am sure that I am not the only one that shed a tear during the trailer. I think it will impress those of us that grew up with the story. And I hope it makes a whole new generation fall in love with the story, although I imagine that parents from my generation are now raising their kids with the same stories they grew up with -- I know that I would -- so I imagine this book is already in the collections of the young ones of today. The new movie doesn't come out till October 16th. However, the soundtrack comes out this week.