Amoeblog

Looking Back @ Hip-Hop in 2010

Posted by Billyjam, December 31, 2010 10:30pm | Post a Comment

2010 was another great year for hip-hop with a seemingly never-ending flow of quality releases dropping from both underground and mainstream hip-hop artists. Hence, it's impossible to fully represent the diversity of hip-hop in 2010 in any year-end column. But this Amoeblog will attempt to offer a sampler of some of the highlights of 2010 via revisiting some select Amoeba Hip-Hop Top 5 charts along with some accompanying videos. Also below are some best-of 2010 lists from Luis F Soria (Amoeba San Francisco), Ray Ricky Rivera (Amoeba Hollywood), DJ Inti (Amoeba Berkeley), and myself (Amoeblog).

The lists of 2010 releases below only scratch the surface of what came out this past year, which proves just how vibrant hip-hop was in 2010. It was everywhere, with artists crossing over more than ever into pop, rock, & dance. And while 2010 saw a ton of newcomers drop impressive albums, it was also a year when many longtime artists delivered some of their best work. Eminem, Big Boi, E40 and Ghostface Killah each had stellar releases. Also impressive in 2010 were Dres from Black Sheep, Sadat X, Rah Digga, and Son of Bazerk and No Self Control, who returned with the killer jackin for beats track, "I Swear On a Stack of Old Hits," released by Chuck D's Slamjamz label. Unfortunately, when they performed live, opening for Public Enemy in 2010, they weren't as good as on record or video (see below). Consistently great in concert including on their 2010 tour was Public Enemy whose 1991 single "By The Time I Get To Arizona" inspired many and took on a new meaning in 2010 with Arizona's Senate Bill 1070, or SB 1070.
Bored Stiff
DJ Shadow's Shadowsphere tour was among the best shows of 2010. Zion I's recent Atomic Clock tour was also on the money. Gurp Fest, earlier this month, proved that the party driven, raw hip-hop Bay Area bred movement is on the brink of blowing up. Among the many Bay Area artists making noise in 2010 were Richmond's Erk Tha Jerk, Vallejo's Moe Green, and Fillmore San Francisco's DaVinci. Veteran SF hip-hop crew Bored Stiff released the free digital album Now More Than Ever in 2010 but tragically lost a member when earlier this month Rick Fairley, aka Big Kwanz, died in his sleep from a heart attack. He was only 36. Hip-hop lost many others too in 2010, notably GURU of Gang Starr, who died back in April at age 43.

Best 11 Films of 2010 That Entertained Me

Posted by Charles Reece, December 31, 2010 01:08pm | Post a Comment
The Revolutionary Spectacle

  

Since Che only showed for a week in 2009 and I couldn't see it until this year, I'm including it here (and, conversely, I included Mother and Trash Humpers on my last year tally). Along with Carlos, The Social Network and Mesrine, this was the year of the biopic for me. I generally hate biopics, since they tend to reduce an interesting individual to the least interesting aspects of his or her life. Who gives a shit about the summer Che traveled around on a motorbike falling in love? Why, he's almost just like us ... except for that time he took over a country. Steven Soderberg and Olivier Assayas focus their epics on what made their respective subjects, Ernesto Guevara and Ilich Ramírez Sánchez, historically significant, namely wreaking ideological havoc. Thanks to their loving attention to the details of guerilla warfare and terrorism, I can now knowingly return to my homeland and make it the independent republic that God always intended it to be. Best historical epics since David Lean was making them.

The Phantasmagoric Spectacle

  

Like everything else, tripping has lost its religious significance these days, so I'm glad filmmakers are providing product to keep acidheads off our suburban streets. Nicholas Refn's Valhalla Rising is vague, contemplative and takes you down the rabbit hole via a mistaken orthogonal turn. Gaspar Noé's Enter the Void is garrulous, explicitly laying out what's coming in the first 20 minutes through a stoned reading of the Tibetan Book of the Dead. Life and death are circular; you don't enter the rabbit hole, but are already there. Plenty of solid, hallucinatory potential here, kids.

The Old-Fashioned Spectacle



  

I don't think it's a matter of selective sampling of the past on DVD to suggest that Hollywood's output before the 80s produced a lot more films like these than after 1980. Anything from Nora Ephron hardly comes close to any randomly selected romantic comedy from the 30s or 40s, for example. The delivery is too dull-witted, but the writing isn't as sharp, either. The Social Network does compare favorably to comedy's golden age. Despite David Fincher's being too self-important to make a film under two hours, Aaron Sorkin's smart enough to remind me of Howard Hawks, Frank Capra and George Cukor's scenarists. The Coen Brothers harken back to the 50s western where characterization and the contemplation of existence took precedence over action and plot with some comedy thrown in (Matt Damon plays the Southern flipside of The Naked Spur's Ralph Meeker). If True Grit isn't on the level of Anthony Mann, it at least approaches Budd Boetticher, and that's good enough for me. Roman Polanski's The Ghost Writer recalls a time when Polanski was better at making films than escaping justice. It's far superior to the political thrillers of 70s Hollywood like The Parallax View or Three Days of the Condor while remaining fairly platitudinous in its ideology. In other words, it works as an enjoyable thriller, but don't expect ZIn a better world, these three films would be average genre entertainment, the baseline that moviegoers should expect. In our world, they make best-of lists.

The Documentary Spectacle





Both of these films document the ingenuity of entertainers trying to come up with novel ways to keep an audience looking at the screen. Jeff Tremaine's Jackass 3D details a new arsenal of self-torture techniques from the Knoxville crew. I was particularly impressed with some of the simpler ideas such as Johnny Knoxville proving Roger Miller's dictum that one can't roller skate in a buffalo herd (Knoxville, like his aesthetic mentor John Waters, has good taste in pop music). Although its 3D effects aren't very consistent, the introductory and final sequences are the most glorious use of the technology I've seen. Steve-O bouncing slow-mo into a ceiling fan is, without a doubt, the most beautiful action sequence of the decade, much better than anything in Avatar or, even, the mass bromicide in Piranha 3D. And, on the other side of the equation, Henri-Georges Clouzot and his team of cinematographers demonstrate what can be done in special effects without digital or 3D artifacts by experimenting with mirrors, lighting, lens manipulation and makeup. The footage of these experiments is the primary reason for seeing Serge Bromberg and Ruxandra Medrea's doc about the making of Clouzot's failed film.

The Escape, or Punishing the Wicked, Spectacle

  

A natural pairing since both films center on the thrill of escape -- from prisons and banks in the case of Mesrine and from preschool in the case of Toy Story 3. Neither is as intense as the classics Le Trou and Rififi, but each creates spectacular thrills nonetheless. Despite not being a fan of what CGI has done to cartoons, Pixar has earned my begrudging admiration, albeit for the same reasons I like non-animated films: direction, writing, etc.. One of those cetera is ideology. There's a definite conservative streak that runs through their best films, but it's complexly instantiated in well-rounded character arcs, never the embarrassing puerility that constitutes the Republican party. Ratatouille is a populist critique of high-toned social critics (e.g., Critical Theorists). The Incredibles is a libertarian mocking of egalitarianism. And with Toy Story 3, possibly Pixar's best film, we get a moral re-examination (if not rebuttal) of commodification and power relations through individual responsibility. Andy's gang of toys is imprisoned in a panoptical preschool overseen by the omnipresent eyes of a cymbal-clanging monkey. The monkey, like all the other inmates, is under the control of Lotso, a fuchsia-colored, stuffed bear with a game leg and S.O.B. disposition. Long ago, he confronted his commodified status when his little girl owner, believing him lost, simply replaced him with another version. The film empathizes with this selfhood reduced to exchange value qua mechanical reproduction, but it doesn't excuse Lotso's rise to power by treating his toy brethren in the same manner. After he fails a second chance at redemption proffered by Woody at the fiery gates of a junkyard hell, he's condemned to a bug-splattered crucifixion on the grill of a diesel semi. French bankrobber Jacques Mesrine tried to justify his thievery and murdering with Marxian rhetoric, that it was supposedly all a revolt against the bourgeois system. But, as with the bear, Jean-François Richet's diptych biopic (Killer Instinct and Public Enemy #1) makes it clear that leftist sympathies were a mask for a greedy will to power. The final bullet to the head is what Mesrine morally earned, despite France's police and penitential system of the period not meeting the basic requirements of humanism. Both stories make for an interesting analysis of just deserts in a de-individualizing social system, but Toy Story 3 is more serious about it than Mesrine.

The Black Swan

Posted by Miss Ess, December 31, 2010 11:16am | Post a Comment

The Black Swan
may be my favorite film of the year. Themes of pressure, perfectionism, claustrophobia, and the horror and madness that come along with the distortion that occurs when all three are applied to the brain at the same time are explored here in a fabulous performance by Natalie Portman along with Mila Kunis. And Winona Ryder's Beth is scary as hell!

Here's the trailer:

 

Best Live Shows of 2010 by Kaitlin

Posted by The Bay Area Crew, December 31, 2010 11:05am | Post a Comment

I am a photographer, but these aren't necessarily my best photos ever. They are, however, photos from most of my favorite shows of 2010, in chronological order:

melvins

1/2/10 An Evening with the Melvins at the Great American Music Hall

I don't like to be late to shows, but I think I had to work this night, so I walked into the Great American Music Hall during the second song of the set. The show began with just Buzzo and Dale on stage. I brought my one of my brothers to the show, and it was his first time seeing the Melvins. We grew up listening to a lot of Beatles and both LOVE them, so when the band played "Let Me Roll It" by Paul McCartney, I kinda lost my shit. It was an amazing beginning to a rad show. Love those Melvins!

frank fairfield

 brendan benson

2/11/10 Brendan Benson supported by Frank Fairfield at the Independent

I love Brendan Benson and saw him twice this year but this show was extra awesome because I got to see Frank Fairfield. He plays old timey country/bluegrass music and he blew me away. I also grew up listening to Bob Wills, the Carter Family, Johnny Cash, among others. I was pleased when Frank played at Amoeba Music later this year to support Terry Zwigoff's DVD signing.  

Continue reading...

Hip-Hop Rap Up 12:31:10

Posted by Billyjam, December 30, 2010 05:25pm | Post a Comment
Amoeba Music Berkeley Weekly Hip-Hop Top Five Chart: 12:31:10


1) Cee Lo Green The Lady Killer (Elektra Records)

2) Kanye West My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy (Roc-A-Fella/Def Jam)
 
3) Ghostface Killah Apollo Kids (Def Jam)
 
4) Michael Franti & Spearhead The Sound of Sunshine (Capital)

5) Andre Nickatina & Tha Jacka My Middle Name Is Crime EP (I-Khan Distribution)

Special thanks to Amoeba Berkeley's DJ Inti, whose year end list is posted on Amoeblog, for this final Amoeba hip-hop chart of the year. "Due to the holiday shopping rush, some releases that haven't shown up in a while show a spike in sales," Inti told me, explaining that the Michael Franti/Spearhead album released back in early summer is back on the top five for the Telegraph Avenue store. Meanwhile, the more recently released albums from both Kanye and Cee Lo continue to sell well and likely will into 2011. Speaking of Kanye, a leaked version of the new video for his album track "Monster" surfaced earlier today on several sites including YouTube. Click here to see the video/song that features Jay-Z, Nicki Minaj, and Rick Ross but be forewarned that the audio quality is poor.

New hip-hop releases at Amoeba, as in albums dropping over the past week or two, include both Ghostface Killah's impressive new solo release and Andre Nickatina & The Jacka's collaborative EP release, My Middle Name Is Crime, on Nickatina's I-Khan Distribution label. The 8 song release from these two much celebrated Bay Area rappers follows their series of singles together. 

Continue reading...

All That Biodigital Jazz, Man

Posted by Kells, December 30, 2010 10:55am | Post a Comment

I remember the first time I caught sight of the glowing, blacklit neon appeal of TRON. The boxy upright console outshone the others in my hometown Putt-Putt arcade and I couldn't help desiring to bask in its purple hazed portal though I'd always considered Centipede to be my one and only love. Let's be honest, playing TRON was about as exciting as the saccharin in a can of Tab, no matter how romanced I was by that Starlight Express meets Pinball Wizard of a design story. It's a silly game popularized a silly movie and it seems the good folks down at Disney completely understand that. TRON may never be taken seriously for its dramatic narrative and that's exactly right-on, but it is bursting with cinematic content. For me, re-viewing the 1982 classic TRON flick and the recently reimagineered TRON: Legacy was pure pop Sci-Fi pleasure the likes of which anyone this side of the Logan's Run Carousel knows better than to over-analyze.

Anyway, what better way to punctuate sweet freedom of another semester completed and celebrate the spirit of the season than seeing TRON: Legacy in IMAX 3D over Christmas vacation? Disney's new take on the ambitious yet sketchy Rotoscoped, post modern, science-fantasy arcade-gaming jam delivers a not very smart but sometimes clever cross-section of tired sci-fi/fantasy genre clichés, slickly redesigned to diamond-cut, mind-blowing visual perfection, ever flying the promotional gaming flag and still driven (literally!) by a pre-Lebowski albeit CG'd Jeff Bridges (which raises questions about the ethical treatment of dead actors' imminent bodies of possible future work) as well as the more popular (and less obviously plasti-complexioned) post "Dude" Jeff Bridges. Aesthetically, TRON went from this: 
to this:



...clunky helmet no longer required. I really love the visual shift in the application of a primary color scheme from TRON's UV tinged, patent eighties neons to the updated laser red, tungsten yellow and halogen blue as they appear both on and off their respective renderings of "the grid," not to mention the thrilling, hi-tech hard edge TRON: Legacy has over the crappy vectorgraphic "effects" dealt by its predecessor. However, TRON: Legacy does manage to shovel its fair share of shit: what's with that queeny Castor character and his, or should I say HER, swishy hardly-head-of-security counterpart? Accommodating the Brits-as-villains Star Wars stereotype much? Castor's little ditty and dance act should be cast out. And how about all that easy, cheesy dialogue? I swear some of those lines were straight up lifted from the Matrix --- is that why this film wasn't made ten years ago? And while I'm not buying so much the Neo/Jesus/Skywalker/Solo vibe of Kevin Flynn's son (played by Garrett Hedlund), Sam, I am totally vibing on Jeff Bridges' Obi Wan/God/Gandalf "zen thing" update of his completely timelapsed character, under the influence of a heavy dose of his Dudeness (Duder, or El Duderino if you're not into the whole brevity thing). I mean, really, if Bridges hadn't had his prior engagement with the brothers Coen, TRON: Legacy would probably only have its visual wizardry going for it and zero characters for folks like me to latch on to. Besides, I was more than ready to settle in and enjoy the ride after that opening sequence: Bridges' voice, speaking over Daft Punk's excellent score of electronic minimalism meets classical orchestration --- incorporating Wendy Carlos' original TRON soundtrack in a fitting homage --- urging us to think of a time when computers seemed more magical than mechanical and menacing, the inevitability of A.I. more a willing dream than nightmarish catastrophe. "The Grid," he recalls: "A digital frontier. I tried to picture clusters of information as they move through the computer. What did they look like? Ships? Motorcycles? Were the circuits like freeways? I kept dreaming of a world I thought I’d never see. And then, one day, I got in."

In short, the good parts of TRON: Legacy are really
good and they mostly make up for any short-comings Disney inserted or let slip into the big picture. The restraint in shown in choosing to present certain scenes in 2D and the impressively seamless transition from early eighties to late eighties to present day, not to mention tasteful use of songs by Journey and the Eurythmics, add a touch of class and sophistication to what should by any reckoning be a silly remake of a silly movie concerning an attractive yet silly video game where hot fem-bot types still manage to stomp it out stilettos and impossibly wide tires, or whatever, corner like a ten-speed on ice. Whatever, Daft Punk's cameo was flawlessly fun and I got a kooky idea for an interior lit Jedi cloak that'll look fabulous flapping in the wind while riding a TRON bike. Plus, seeing TRON: Legacy has only kicked off my holiday Sci-Fi/Fantasy movie marathon extravaganza by putting me in the mood for, well, every film I've mentioned above plus about ten others like Bladerunner, Soylent Green, Westworld, Zardoz, They Live, Star Trek IV (the one with the whales) and Star Trek VII (the better one with the Borg), just to name a few. Here's the trailer, if you choose to go out and see it, do yourself a favor and shell out the extra ducats to see it in 3D IMAX, it really should be the only way to view it.

December 29, 2010: Rare Exports

Posted by phil blankenship, December 29, 2010 11:55pm | Post a Comment

Amoeba Berkeley's DJ Inti - 2010 Year End Picks

Posted by Billyjam, December 29, 2010 09:18am | Post a Comment
 
Die Antwoord - "Wat Pomp" - $o$: "South Africa raps in the house." - DJ Inti

Including South Africa's Die Antwoord (above), these are, in no particular order, some of the artists and their accompanying songs (videos) that DJ Inti, who works at Amoeba Music Berkeley, was feeling during 2010. As a self-described "singles/12's kind of dude," these choices are more song-based than album- based and include such diverse artists as hella prolific hometown hip-hopper Lil B, French producer on an Irish label (All City) Onra, and Brooklyn based Das Racist featuring San Francisco transplant Victor Vazquez & Queens-born Himanshu Suri along with their always-entertaining hype man Dap. Most of the videos include quick comments by DJ Inti plus the artist name & song title.

Chico Mann - "Ya Yo Se" - Analog Drift: "Really feeling this album right now." - Inti


Washed Out - "Feel It All Around" - Life of Leisure: "Mellowed out, slowed down boogie samples." - Inti

Hubert Daviz - "Pa Vale (Prima Parte)" - Proceduri De Rutina: "Some chilled out niceness." - Inti


Onra - "Long Distance": "Boogie from France." - Inti


Lil B - "It's Okay To Be Different" - Rain in England: "Berkeley weird ass future rap released on a noise label. About nothing but himself." - Inti

And DJ Inti's honorable mentions of 2010:

Announcing the Winners of the 20th Anniversary Testimonials Contest

Posted by Amoebite, December 29, 2010 09:11am | Post a Comment


Amoeba Testimonials Contest Winners!

In celebration of our 20th Anniversary, we ran a contest where we asked YOU to tell US about your favorite Amoeba experience. The response was overwhelming!

Thank you to everyone who took the time to tell us their own personal Amoeba story. It was so difficult to just pick 3 winners but we did. To read all of the entries click right here! Read on to find out who won!

 amoeba music berkeley

Continue reading...

Mash-Up of the Year's Top Pop Hits

Posted by Billyjam, December 28, 2010 03:33pm | Post a Comment
 
DJ Earworm's self explanatory "United State of Pop 2010 (Don't Stop the Pop) Mashup of Top 25 Billboard Hits" is the sequel to last year's similarly titled (but superior - due to the records that charted on the pop charts in 09) mashup mix in which the king of mashups takes most of the biggest pop hits of 2010 (including Lady GaGa, Katy Perry, & Rhianna) and throws them in a virtual blender. And it works perfectly thanks to two factors; Earworm's gift for his craft, plus the homogenous production and overall sound of the majority of the pop music of the past twelve months.

The Social Network

Posted by Miss Ess, December 28, 2010 10:39am | Post a Comment


The Social Network
. I had no interest in seeing it, but once I did, I can admittedly agree with the critics that despite its potentially yawn-inducing Facebook-saga topic, it is one of the most compelling films of the year. It moves at a frenetic, breakneck pace, just as the events of the film must have felt to its main characters, who in the space of months go from nerdy Harvard students to (nerdy) millionaires entrenched in legal action and beyond.

The dialogue is snappy and well written by Aaron Sorkin, who has a little cameo in the film as well, and I must congratulate director David Fincher for creating a film that easily held my attention throughout the two hours, and not just because I was gaping at the flawlessly created Winklevoss twins, actually played by one actor and a lot of digital trickery.

Even if you are not a fan of Facebook or overly self-important Harvard-types, this film is gripping as a real-life based character study alone and definitely worth checking out.

Best of World Music For 2010 by Gomez Comes Alive

Posted by Gomez Comes Alive!, December 27, 2010 08:02am | Post a Comment
Best Packaging:
Peña-S/T CD & DVD of Traditional Afro-Peru

Best Artwork:
DJ Lengua -Cruzando

Best World Music Release That NPR Likes:
Afrocubism-S/T

Best World Fusion Album:
Saravah Soul-Cultura Impura

Best Retro World Release LP:
Anibal Velasquez -Mambo Loco

Best 2010 World Release On LP:
Mexican Institute of Sound-Suave Patria

Best World Music Box Set:
V/A-Congotronics Box Set

Best World Music Compilation Of 2010:
PomegranatesPersian Pop, Funk, Folk, and Psych Of The 60s & 70s

Best Of The Many African Funk Compilations We Saw In 2010:
Afro Beat AirwaysWest African Shock Waves Ghana & Togo 1972 to 1979

Best African Compilation That Wasn’t From Nigeria:
Angola SoundtrackThe Unique Sound Of Luanda 1965 to 1976

Best Usage Of World Music Without Being A World Music Album:
Cut Chemist Sound Of The Police – A Live One Turntable Mix of African & South American Inspired Music

Best World Music Release That I Raved About Last Year That Got Popular This Year:
Chico Mann-Analog Drift

Best Song Of 2010 From The Hoods Of South L.A.:
Banda Los Recoditos- "Ando Bien Pedo"


Best Of The Many African Psychedelic Compilations We Saw In 2010:
World Ends Afro Rock & Psychedelia In 1970s Nigeria

Best LP That I Wish I Bought But Now Is Sadly Out Of Print:
Omar Khorshid: Guitar El Chark (Guitar of the Orient)

Best Recording Of A Live Show That I Thought Was Horrible When I Went To It, But Is Much Better In My Mind Now That I Heard The Live Recording:
Mulatu AstatkeMochilla Presents Timeless – Mulatu Astatke

 Best Retro World Release Of 2010 That People Thought Was A Modern Recording:
Charanjit SinghTen Ragas To A Disco Beat

Best Of The Fania Reissues On CD:
Kako & AzuquitaLive It Up

Best Of The Fania Reissues On LP: 
Johnny Colón and His Orchestra-Boogaloo '67

Best Salsa Release Of 2010:
Spanish Harlem Orquestra-Viva La Tradicion

Best Limited LP Reissue That Outnumbered The Actual First Pressing:
El GusanoFantasia Del Barrio

Best Retro-Latin Soul Reissue Of 2010 That Wasn’t Joe Bataan Or Ralfi Pagan:
Tito Ramos-Where My Head Is At

Best Chicha Release Of 2010 That Wasn’t Roots Of Chicha
Tie:
Ranil Y Su Conjunto Tropical Ranil's Jungle Party
V/A-Cumbia Beat


Best Of The Many Retro Asian Releases Of 2010:
Saigon Rock & Soul: Vietnamese Classic Tracks 1968-1974

Best Of The 2010 French Releases Bought By Non-French People:
Tie:
Yann Tiersen-Dust Lane
Charlotte Gainsbourg-IRM

Best Second Volume Of A Compilation That Is As Good Or Better Than The First:
V/A-Roots Of Chicha Vol. 2

Lifetime Achievement Award:
Very Be Careful-Escape Room

Best Digital Cumbia Release Of 2010:
V/A- Cumbia Bestial

Best Retro Latin Music Compilation Of 2010:
Palenque Palenque! - Champeta Criolla & Afro Roots in Colombia 1975-91

Best International Rap Album Of 2010:
Ana Tijoux-1977

Best Latin Rock & Pop Release Of 2010:
Calle 13- Entre Los Que Quieran

Best Tribute To Kraftwerk’s Autobahn By A Group From Tijuana:
Nortec Collective Presents: Bostich + Fussible-Bulevar 2000

Best Version Of A Kraftwerk Song In 2010:
Seu Jorge- Seu Jorge & Almaz (The Model)

Best Instore At Amoeba Hollywood By A World Music Artist:
Bassekou Kouyate-I Speak Fula

Best World Music Album Of 2010 Sadly Not Available At Amoeba:
Chancha Via Circuito-Rio Arriba



Best World Music LP Lifesaver When You Didn’t Bring Enough Records To The Club:
V/A-Afrosound of Colombia

Best Brazilian LP Reissue(s):
Tie:
Lo Borges
-S/T
Milton Nascimento & Lo Borges-Clube Da Esquina

Best World Music Release That Would Make You Travel To A Remote Part Of The World Just To See Them Perform:
Omar Souleyman-Jazeera Nights

Best World Music Release Of 2010:
Rita Indiana Y Los Misterios-El Juidero

December 26, 2010: Saw The Final Chapter

Posted by phil blankenship, December 26, 2010 10:03pm | Post a Comment

Soul Singer Teena Marie Dead at age 54

Posted by Billyjam, December 26, 2010 06:33pm | Post a Comment
Teena Marie
For the past couple of hours, Twitter, Facebook, and other online sites have been abuzz with word that soul singer Teena Marie, who was once known as Rick James' protégé, died today (Dec 26th, 2010). According to several sources close to the singer, the word out there is sadly true. Additionally, such outlets including CNN and Philadelphia soul and R&B radio station WDAS-FM have confirmed the report, saying that Teena Marie died from a heart attack the age of 54.

Born Marie Christine Brockert, Teena Marie released thirteen studio albums. Her debut was 1979's Wild and Peaceful, and her most recent one was last year's Congo Square. Teena Marie, aka Vanilla Child, will be remembered for such solo hits as "I Need Your Lovin," "Square Biz," "Lovergirl," "Cassanova Brown," "Out On A Limb," and "Ooo La La La" (which the Fugees famously sampled on "Fu-Gee-La"). Teena Marie is also known for doing a series of duets with (her producer/mentor) Rick James such as "Fire and Desire."

Teena Marie "Square Biz"(1981)

Rick James & Teena Marie "Fire and Desire"(1984)

Teena Marie "I Need Your Lovin'" (1980)

Teena Marie "Lovergirl" (1984)

December 25, 2010: True Grit

Posted by phil blankenship, December 26, 2010 09:36am | Post a Comment

plus we caught a bonus showing of The Tourist.

The Art of the LP Cover- Christmas Covers

Posted by Mr. Chadwick, December 25, 2010 10:00am | Post a Comment

December 24, 2010: Yogi Bear 3D

Posted by phil blankenship, December 25, 2010 09:20am | Post a Comment

Mash-Up of the (Christmas) Day, December 25th, 2010: Imagine Santa

Posted by Billyjam, December 25, 2010 09:20am | Post a Comment

Mash-Up of the (Christmas) Day: "Imagine Santa" (DJ BC Xmas Mashup)

"Imagine Santa" (DJ BC Xmas Mashup) is from the Santastic II mashup album -- props to DJ BC for the audio mash-up and to DJ Brewski for the video mix portion of this video. Happy Holidayz, Amoeblog readers!

my top 50 albums of 2010...

Posted by Brad Schelden, December 24, 2010 05:53pm | Post a Comment

ariel pink's haunted graffiti before today
#1 Ariel Pink's Haunted Graffiti-
Before Today
(4AD)
The first time I heard this album I knew it would be at the top of my list this year. It was really just a competition the rest of the year with these other albums to see if anything could overtake it but nothing could do it. I somehow resisted the temptation of Ariel Pink the last couple of years. Before Today was clearly the album for me and a perfect introduction to this band. I just didn't know how much I would be falling in love with the band and obsessed with this album. It is like a shoegaze soft rock mash up of all the songs that you have ever loved. You simply need this album in your collection. It is simply amazing!

listen to "fright night" by ariel pink...



buy the album at amoeba.com

avi buffalo
#2 Avi Buffalo-Avi Buffalo (Sub Pop)
Oh, Avi Buffalo. I am so glad to have you in my life. Another album that I didn't really know I would love until I first listened to it. These guys are crazy young and ridiculously talented. The album is one of the perfect little pop gems of the year and I really couldn't stop listening to it for months. Seeing them open up for My Morning Jacket at the Greek was one of my favorite shows of the year. I was first drawn to them because they were from my hometown of Long Beach, but I fell in love with the album as soon as I heard it. It is addictive. This album will stay with me forever and forever connect me to my great year that was 2010.

listen to "what's in it for" by avi buffalo...


buy the album at amoeba.com

abe vigoda crush
#3 Abe Vigoda-Crush
(Post Present Medium)
Another amazing album this year that sort of caught me by surprise! It is Abe Vigoda's dark and synthy masterpiece. Full of super fun and mesmerizing spooky songs. These songs could have easily been on an album by New Order or The Cure. I am very happy they took the album in this direction, and the album cover is perfect. Reminds me of the serial killer in Silence of the Lambs sneaking through your curtains mixed up with some Stevie Nicks photo shoot. Brilliant!

listen to "dream of my love" by abe vigoda...


buy the album at amoeba.com


the drums
#4 The Drums-The Drums (Downtown)
The Summertime EP by The Drums came out at the end of 2009. It easily became my most listened to album of the end of last year and the beginning of this year. I basically just counted down the days until this full length album came out. This band is actually from New York but they sort of took off first in the UK and could easily be confused for being British or possibly Swedish. They remind me at times of The Smiths of Gene. Like the Smiths, they combine dark sounds of new wave with a more jangly pop sound. Belle & Sebastian meets Joy Division. Twee meets New Wave. I really love this album and it could have easily been my favorite of the year. Can't wait to see what they come up with next.

listen to "me & the moon" by the drums...


buy the album at amoeba.com

soft moon
#5 The Soft Moon-The Soft Moon
(Captured Tracks)
I have been paying close attention to this label after I fell in love with Wild Nothing earlier this year. Captured Tracks has become my favorite label of the year. They also put out the amazing new album from Blank Dogs and the Beach Fossils album just missed my list. I really just felt like I had enough of this label on my list already. The Soft Moon is dark and moody and synthy -- another album I loved as soon as I heard the first seconds of the first track. This album could have easily been put out by 4AD in the late 80's or early 90's. Watch out for this label! They have more fantastic albums just around the corner next year. 

listen to "dead love" by the soft moon...



buy the album at amoeba.com



#6 Arcade Fire-The Suburbs (Merge)
This is the only band in my top ten this year that has been on previous lists in years past. All the other bands had debuts this year or else this year was really the first time that I became a fan. Arcade Fire belongs in this top ten though. I became a big fan of them after their first album and have been a loyal fan ever since. They continue to put out great albums and amaze me with their live shows. You are probably already a fan of this band if you are ever going to be and I really can't get enough of Arcade Fire. I also loved their limited 12" that came out earlier this year. They just sort of sent them to their favorite record stores as a surprise for the fans and shops.

listen to "ready to start" by arcade fire...


buy the album at amoeba.com


joanna newsom have one on me
#7 Joanna Newsom-Have One On Me (Drag City)
Much like Ariel Pink, I avoided Joanna Newsom for years. I tried a couple of times but I just couldn't get into her album --. I couldn't get past her voice. But either she changed or I did. I really am not sure which, and this became the year of Joanna Newsom for me. The CD and LP are both beautifully packaged in little boxes. What a great album that I seriously would have never expected to see on my list this year! She also put on one of my favorite shows this year at the Orpheum. I would like to apologize to Joanna for not falling under her spell earlier! Even though it's taken me this long, it was worth the wait. This album is dreamy and folky and just perfect.

listen to "'81" by joanna newsom...



buy the album at amoeba.com


washed out life of leisure
#8 Washed Out-Life of Leisure
(Mexican Summer)
This album came out on vinyl right at the very end of last year but didn't really have a proper release until this year. It's another one of my new favorites this year. The album is only six tracks long but it has earned its place up here in my top ten -- another sort of eighties shoegazey album and yet another album I was destined to fall for. I became such a fan that I even bought one of his cassettes this year. The album is crazy addictive, and will take you on a dreamy sort of electronic journey. This is the good stuff! I really can't wait much longer for a full length from this guy. I am hoping it can live up to the brilliance of this one. 

listen to "get up" by washed out...



buy the album at amoeba.com

Best Coast Crazy For You
#9 Best Coast-Crazy For You
(Mexican Summer)
This album cover clearly wins for best album cover of the year. Did you see the kitty on here? It's the best! Such a great California album full of brilliant little love songs. It has the feeling of a really great girl group album from the 60's produced by Phil Spector. It is a perfect pop album and clearly one of my favorites of the year. I have listened to this album many times on repeat. My only complaint that it is a bit too short and I never want it to end! It came out at the perfect time, right in the middle of summer. This album is brought to us by another one of my favorite labels this year...Mexican Summer. 

listen to "boyfriend" by best coast...



buy the album at amoeba.com


Wild Nothing Gemini
#10 Wild Nothing-Gemini
(Captured Tracks)

Wild Nothing first caught my attention with their Cloudbusting 7", a brilliant take on Kate Bush. This band was clearly made for me; it's the perfect combination of twee and shoegaze. Gemini is just plain dreamy, with elements of all my favorite songs from Slowdive, My Bloody Valentine, Cocteau Twins, and The Cure. This really is a heartbreaking album but it is worth it. It is that good and you really shouldn't live without it. I could listen to this album over and over again all night long. I love when new bands like this come into my life! Thank you, Wild Nothing!

listen to "drifter" by wild nothing...



buy the album at amoeba.com






Crystal Castles
-Crystal Castles (Universal)






beac house




Beach House
-Teen Dream (Sub Pop)









Kanye West
-My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy (Def Jam)









Deerhunter
-Halcyon Digest (4AD)









Belle & Sebastian
-Write About Love (Matador)










Blank Dogs
-Land & Fixed (Captured Tracks)








The Nationa
l-High Violet (4AD)







teengirl fantasy



Teengirl Fantasy
-7AM
(True Panther Sounds)












Thieves Like Us
-Again & Again (Shelflife)










Daft Punk
-Tron Legacy Soundtrack (Disney)









Sufjan Stevens
-Age of Adz
(Asthmatic Kitty)









CEO
-White Magic (Modular)









Radio Dept
-Clinging To A Scheme (Labrador)





delorean



Delorean
-Subiza (True Panther Sounds)










Warpaint
-Fool (Rough Trade)





shout out louds work



Shout Out Louds
-Work (Merge)










Land of Talk
-Cloak & Cipher
(Saddle Creek)









Toro Y Moi
-Causers of This (Carpark)





zola jesus




Zola Jesus
-Valusia (Sacred Bones)









JJ
-No3 (Secretly Canadian)










Stornoway
-Beachcomber's Windowsill (4AD)





foals total life forever



Foals
-Total Life Forever (Sub Pop)











Surfer Blood
-Astro Coast (Kanine)










Tokyo Police Club
-Champ
(Mom & Pop Music)








Wolf Parade
-Expo 86 (Sub Pop)











Ceremony
-Rocket Fire (Killer Pimp)










The School
-Loveless Unbeliever (Elefant)





serena maneesh



Serena-Maneesh
-No. 2: Abyss in B Minor (4AD)









Dum Dum Girls
-I Will Be (Sub Pop)










Junip
-Fields (Mute)









Album Leaf
-A Chorus of Storytelling
(Sub Pop)









The Depreciation Guild
-Spirit Youth (Kanine)






delphic



Delphic
-Acolyte (Dangerbird)









Three Mile Pilot
-
Inevitable Past is the Future
Forgotten
(Temporary Residence)





james blackshaw



James Blackshaw
-All Is Falling
(Young God)








Johann Johannsson
-And In the Endless Pause There Came the Sound of Bees (Type)









Hauschka
-Foreign Landscapes (Fat Cat)






manual drowned in light



Manual
-Drowned In Light (Darla)











Kenseth Thibideau-
Repetition
(Temporary Residence)










Majeure
-Timespan
(Temporary Residence)






Hip-Hop Rap Up: Christmas Eve 2010

Posted by Billyjam, December 24, 2010 08:51am | Post a Comment
Amoeba Music Hollywood Weekly Hip-Hop Top Five Chart: 12:24:10


1) Kanye West My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy (Roc-A-Fella/Def Jam)
 
2) Nicki Minaj Pink Friday (Cash Money/Universal)
 
3) Diddy-Dirty Money Last Train To Paris (Bad Boy Records / Interscope)

4) Cee Lo Green The Lady Killer (Elektra Records)

5)  Curren$y Pilot Talk II (Def Jam)
  
Thanks to Ray Ricky Rivera at Amoeba Hollywood for this week's Hip-Hop Top Five chart at the Los Angeles Amoeba store. It includes many of the recent new releases that have been doing well at the other two Amoebas and beyond: Kanye West, Cee Lo Green, Nicki Minaj, and Curren$y. It also includes the brand new DIddy-Dirty Money album, Last Train To Paris, which the artist/rap impresario once known as Puff Daddy said took three years to make and described its sound as "electro-hip-hop-soul funk." In a press release, Diddy said that for this more dance club sounding album he was influenced "by being in the dance music world and doing stuff with Felix da Housecat, Erick Morillo, Deep Dish, DJ Hell and being in Ibiza and DC10," in reference to the big nightclub on the island of Ibiza in the Mediterranean. Despite themselves, many Diddy haters will find this album infectious since it is filled with irresistibly catchy choruses. Of course, being the wise overseer / producer he is, Diddy only did part of the real work on this album; he shrewdly enlisted the talents of others to accomplish his musical goals.

Continue reading...

And the Award For Best Use of Christmas in a Non-Holiday Movie Goes To...

Posted by Kells, December 23, 2010 08:00pm | Post a Comment
...Gen Sekiguchi's patchwork vomitorium of tsunamic set design and cinematographic eye-candy  Survive Style 5+!!! The random yet clearly delineated Christmas sequence of this whirlwind adventure, set to the strains of "The First Noel" turned way up to eleven, is so over-the-top fabulous and inspiring that I hope to one day successfully drown my house in holiday decor à la Sekiguchi --- every year I get closer to the mark. Enjoy the visuals! Wanna know more about how Japan "gets" its Christmas kicks? Check out my "Christmas in Japan" jam here!

Banksy's Exit Through the Gift Shop a Runaway Hit at Amoeba Hollywood Since Its DVD Release Last Week

Posted by Billyjam, December 23, 2010 12:59pm | Post a Comment

 Banky's Exit Through the Gift Shop trailer (extended version)

Released only last Tuesday on DVD, the Banksy film Exit Through the Gift Shop has been flying out the door at the Hollywood Amoeba store, where it has already become one of the top selling titles of 2010. Exit Through the Gift Shop "Yeah, it's been selling like crazy," confirmed Jackie in the DVD section of the Los Angeles Amoeba Music by phone yesterday. "At the rate it's selling it's probably going to be one of the number one selling DVDs of the year. It's hilarious and you don't even have to be a fan of this art form to enjoy this documentary." In agreement is pioneering street artist & culture jammer Ron English, who appears briefly in the film and who along with Banksy and Swoon put his art on the Palestinian separation wall in the West Bank in 2007.

"Banksy really made a great movie. He's a great storyteller as you can see from this documentary," said English, explaining the film's premise as, "About this French guy in LA who followed Shephard Fairey around filming him for five years but then he wouldn't give him the footage. And Shephard was like, 'You got the best stuff I've ever done, so let's make the movie,' but the guy Thierry [Guetta] wouldn't give him the footage so he was suing Thierry. And then Thierry turned out to be, like, crazy. And then he did the same thing to Banksy. He shot Banksy for all these years but then he wouldn't give Banksy the footage.

Continue reading...

2010 Instore Favorites by Kaitlin

Posted by The Bay Area Crew, December 23, 2010 09:27am | Post a Comment

2010 In-store Favorites:

This year in San Francisco, Amoeba Music was host to 48 live music performances! Here are some of my favorite photos that I edited for Amoeba.com's "In-store photos" section. While I did not take all of these images, I had the pleasure of editing them and they are some of the most fun photos I've edited this year.

TsuShiMaMiRe

This Japanese female rock trio was loud and got the crowd into it.


Die Antwoord

Continue reading...

Talib Kweli on Gutter Rainbows, Kanye, Prisoner of Conscious, Obama's Raw Deal, Illegal Downloading, Black Star Sequel + More

Posted by Billyjam, December 22, 2010 07:55pm | Post a Comment

I have long been a fan of Talib Kweli's -- his music (both his solo work & collaborations with Mos Def, Hi-Tek, and Madlib) and his consistent & refreshingly uplifting & positive outlook. His unwavering commitment to thought-provoking, conscious, non misogynist hip-hop in an era when that approach to the genre doesn't generally fit the criteria for lucrative success is admirable. Talib Kweli is a truly unique artist and as a high-profile hip-hop act he is an anomaly in that he safely walks that line between mainstream (including his work with Kanye West -- an artist that once opened for him) and independent hip-hop; he is well known above the radar while still maintaining the respect of the ever discerning underground hip-hop world. So when I had an opportunity to attend a listening party in New York last night for Kweli's January 2011 release, Gutter Rainbows, and to also sit down and talk with him a bit for the Amoeblog, I jumped at the chance.

Of course, Talib Kweli is no stranger to Amoeba Music. Not only has his music long been a favorite of staffers and customers alike, but he has also had some very well received Amoeba instores, including at Amoeba San Francisco along with Hi-Tek back in May of this year just as the duo (aka Reflection Eternal) was dropping the highly recommended (but generally slept on) Revolutions Per Minute. And back in August 2007 in support of his last solo album Ear Drum, he had an instore that was streamed live. Kweli put on one of the best ever live sets I've seen at Amoeba Hollywood -- as witnessed in the video below. Last year at SXSW in Austin, TX, when he was performing a showcase with Hi-Tek, Amoeblogger Smiles Davis sat down with the artist to ask him ten questions about hip-hop and his take on the genre.
  
Talib Kweli live @ Amoeba Hollywood, August 2007

Last night (December 21st) was the listening party at the bar Snap on West 14th Street in Manhattan for Gutter Rainbows (Javotti Media/3D), which will be a digital only release. The night was unlike most listening parties in that it was a more intimate event and also was technically a semi-performance for Kweli, who mingled throughout the night with fans and media folk. He Talib Kweli + Hi Tekspent the entire preview playing time of his new album, which drops January 25th, up in the DJ booth rapping along on the mic to many of the new release's 14 songs, and introducing each track, big upping its producer and giving some background history. He also fielded questions from the invited partiers (many longtime friends from Brooklyn) who packed the club and gave an update on what he's been up to.

Continue reading...

This Week At The New Beverly: The Godfather Trilogy Plus Vincent Cassel as Mesrine!

Posted by phil blankenship, December 22, 2010 06:12pm | Post a Comment
This Week At The New Beverly

Our full upcoming schedule is available online:
www.newbevcinema.com/calendar.cfm



Wednesday & Thursday, December 22 & 23

And speaking of Christmas counterprogramming, the New Beverly initiates a week of pre- and post-Christmas and New Year festivities designed to make sure your cinephile heart stays merry and bright with a two-part tale of personal ambition, and that you strut into 2011 alive with the hopes and dreams of one of America's most celebrated families coursing through your spirit. Get warmed up for Christmas on December 23 with a chance to catch one of 2010's most heralded performances-Vincent Cassel as real-life Gallic gangster Jacques Mesrine in a two-part chronicle of the criminal's nearly two-decade-long dominion over the French underworld in director Jean-Francois Richet's MESRINE: PUBLIC ENEMY #1(2010) and MESRINE: KILLER INSITINCT (2010). This is probably your last chance to see Cassel's magnetic work here, in what will surely be an important performance in terms of year-end attention, perhaps also as an interesting point of comparison to how Bronson handles similarly themed material.

RIP, Magnolia Shorty

Posted by Eric Brightwell, December 22, 2010 06:10pm | Post a Comment

Magnolia Shorty
was a bounce rapper from New Orleans who was the first female MC to record with Cash Money Records. She was murdered along with Jerome “Man Man” Hampton on the morning of December 20th, 2010 in Little Woods, New Orleans East. After being hit with a rumored 26 gun shots, their vehicle crashed on the 6300 block of Bridgehampton around 12:30 p.m. She was 28, Hampton was 25.
Renetta Lowe wanted to rap since she was six years old. She was nicknamed Magnolia Shorty by Magnolia Slim (aka Solja Slim) due to her diminutive stature and roots in Uptown’s notorious Magnolia Projects, which also produced rappers Juvenile, Mr. Marcello, 6-Shot and others.

She began rapping publicly when she was twelve, performing at block parties and recording mixtapes. When she signed with Cash Money, she was the first female rapper (and second female, following singer Ms. Tee) to join the label’s ranks. Her sole album for the label, recorded in 1996, is also notable for being the first Cash Money release to feature Juvenile. Not only was Monkey on the D$ck (Cash Money), released in February, 1997, Magnolia Shorty’s last album for the label, but sadly, it was her last album ever. In an era and scene known for bizarre album covers,Monkey on the D$ck’s image of to be-thonged girls with bullet braces and war helmets facing a large, irradiating, disembodied chimpanzee visage is on a level of bizarreness all by itself. Befitting the rapper’s stature, the album is itself incredibly short – just 21 minutes long and, as with many of Cash Money’s independent-era records, sounds like it was recorded in a single, lazy afternoon. The album's opener, “Manny Fresh (Cash Money Style)” doesn’t even feature her. There’s also a radio version of  “Monkey on the D$ck,” another bounce classic, “Charlie Whop!!,”  the wordless “Soldier Chant,” and “Magnolia $horty” (featuring BG and Juvenile).

That same year that she released her album she brought a sixteen-year-old discovery and fellow Magnolia resident to the label, Young Turk. She appeared on “3rd Ward Solja,” off Juvenile’s seminal Solja Rags but by the time Cash Money signed a major deal with Universal in 1998, they had parted ways with their original roster and Magnolia Shorty never again recorded with them. Although she last appeared on a track of a 2007 mixtape, Louisiana Cartel (UnderGround Funk Entertainment), she remains popular in New Orleans, where she performed regularly and wrote songs like “That’s My Juvie” that, though never put to record, are well-known, local club hits. Despite her brief recording career, echoes of Magnolia Shorty’s highly repetitive, crude and lewd bounce are more in evidence than most old school bounce artists by today’s flamboyant sissy rappers.


One of the strange side effects of the relocation of New Orleanians following Katrina was the spread and explosion of bounce’s popularity. Many New Orleanians relocated to Houston, Texas and, in 2009, Magnolia Shorty joined fellow Partners N Crime, DJ Jubilee, Big Freedia, Ms Tee, Katey Red and Vockah Redu at South By Southwest in Austin.



Recently Shorty had joined forces with fellow Cash Money veteran Ms. Tee as Gudda Girlz. Working with DJ EF Cutting, they were working on a new album around the time of her passing. She recently released a duet with 17-year-old singer Kourtney Heart, "My Boy,” and had a club hit with “Smoking Gun." Having just signed with Jive, Heart may've proven Shorty's ticket out of the streets that ended up claiming her if given a little more time. RIP.


Li'l Bit #10

Posted by Job O Brother, December 22, 2010 03:02pm | Post a Comment

Tis the Season to Receive Free Music Downloads from Amoeba Music

Posted by Billyjam, December 22, 2010 02:45pm | Post a Comment

In the spirit of giving for the Christmas season, Amoeba Music is offering some free music to download. As seen on the Amoeba homepage and on the Amoeba.com Free MP3 Downloads page, there are currently a variety of cool Christmas tracks that you can download for absolutely no cost. These include three holiday recordings by vocalist Brandi Shearer ("Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas," "Auld Lang Syne," & the previously unreleased version of "Christmas Time Is Here" by the longtime Amoeba Music friend), the funky funky soulful (a la James Brown) and "Every Day Is Christmas" by Daptone Records recording artist Charles Bradley, whose anticipated debut full length, No Time For Dreaming, arrives in Amoeba on January 25th.

Also on offer for free, care of Amoeba.com, is the brand new Christmas track by Paul Simon, "Getting Ready For Christmas Day" -- a song the famed artist performed live last Thursday onThe Colbert Report on Comedy Central when host Stephan Colbert was teasing Simon over his rhyming in the song. The new holiday themed track is taken from the artist's forthcoming Spring 2011 album So Beautiful Or So What (Hear Music/Concord Music Group) that will also feature such new Simon compositions as "The Afterlife," "Love and Blessings," and "Love Is Eternal Sacred Light." The other Christmas season tracks up for free download include Sub Pop artist Beach House's "I Do Not Care for the Winter Sun," The SuperionsB52's-like "Fruitcake," and White Widow's "Hark the Herald Angels Sing." Obviously, this is a limited time offer, so go snag those free holidays songs for yourself right now at Amoeba.com!

My Best of 2010

Posted by Miss Ess, December 22, 2010 12:13pm | Post a Comment
Time for outside-work fun and general pop culture absorption was extra low this year, but what I loved in 2010, I loved hard. These are the things that made my heart sing over the past twelve months.

Joanna Newsom - Have One On Me



Is there any point in writing about any other album than Joanna's? This triple album is clearly the work of the bright star of young music makers today. The difference between her and everyone else on the playing field? Nothing about her work is derivative: not her sound, not her writing and certainly not her voice. Album of the year, for sure...probably would even call it album of the past few years! It's that good.

"Soft As Chalk"



Mountain Man - Made the Harbor



Old timey yet thoroughly modern.




Carletta Sue Kay



She may not have an official full-length yet, but Miss Carletta is poised to blow up in 2011, guaranteed! She's not like everybody else.




Mad Men Season 4



This show never ceases to amaze me. Every season I think it's gone off the rails and every season it's reined with utter perfection and masterful writing. If you are not watching this show and licking up every last detail of it, you don't get IT.


True Blood



I don't typically care for vampires or fantasy genre-type plot lines so I avoided this show for the past two seasons. After friends pleaded with me to give it a chance, and thanks to free HBO on Demand, I finally caught on and watched all three seasons in just a few months.

December 21, 2010: Morning Glory

Posted by phil blankenship, December 22, 2010 10:55am | Post a Comment

Mixed-Up Media Message: 'Mediums' vs. 'Media'

Posted by Charles Reece, December 22, 2010 09:45am | Post a Comment

Thus the editors establish a continuum between Deleuze’s interests in various creative mediums by placing them all under the category of thought. -- Caroline Hagwood

That quote comes from the respected and edited online journal Film-Philosophy. It contains one of my major pet peeves: using 'mediums' when 'media' is what's intended. The error occurs so frequently and in various places (even in academic journals that should know better) that I'm sure lexicographers will eventually note the change in dictionaries. Until then, I offer this helpful pictorial guide:

MEDIUMS

     


MEDIA

     

    

MIXING MEDIUMS & MEDIA

Best of 2010 by Rob

Posted by The Bay Area Crew, December 22, 2010 09:25am | Post a Comment
Best of 2010. Ugly side up. No particular order.

slices cruising



















1. Slices - Cruising LP (Iron Lung)

A tortured hulk of a record. Both sides fool you into thinking there’s something Fucked Up styled on deck, just to swerve into the guardrail seconds after initial takeoff. Art damaged agro-sPunk that’ll give Dry Rot or Sex Vid a run for the money in the "New Hardcore for Haters" competition. There’s the drunken metallic sway of Blut Aus Nord. The pummeling thug-jazz of Unsane. The recent Pennsylvania noise-rock shuffle. A blaring tension release full of guitar squalor that more than occasionally comes off like a chorus of strangled geese. Instrumentation sputters and flails as someone – something - barks obscenities at you. Your new scene-cleaners. A thinking man's mess.

eclipse of 1453 daily void

Continue reading...

Captain Beefheart Symposium with Gary Lucas in SF

Posted by The Bay Area Crew, December 21, 2010 11:14am | Post a Comment


Tickets on sale Friday, December 24!

December 20, 2010: Black Swan

Posted by phil blankenship, December 20, 2010 10:03pm | Post a Comment

2010 Music Picks: 30 Things to Ease the Holiday Blow

Posted by Smiles Davis, December 20, 2010 12:46pm | Post a Comment

For all you savvy observers, the description “best” was omitted from this year-end post. Why, you ask? Well, for several reasons: a) who the hell am I to say so and so's album was better than so and so; and b) I'm not a jukebox; I simply don't listen to enough albums a year to know whom to accurately give that title to. Furthermore, the ever-expanding field of opinions and critics makes me gag, so I'll pass. Since the bulk of my day is spent discovering, sorting, and devouring music in general, I do have a few things to share at this year's end. Here is a tight list of albums/ mixtapes/ LP’s/ videos and such I couldn’t stop playing this year. In no particular order, here are my favorite musical things of 2010:
 
1) Matthew Dear – Black City (Ghostly)
2) Aloe BlaccGood Things (Stones Throw)
3) Quantic – Dog With a Rope (Tru Thoughts)

4) Toro Y Moi - Causers of This (Carpark Records)
5) Gil Scott-Heron – I’m New Here (XL Recordings)
6) Erykah Badu - New Amerykah Part Two (Return of the Ankh)  (Universal Motown)
7) Kanye West – My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy  (Roc-A-Fella Records)
8) First Aid Kit - The Big Black & The Blue (Wichita   Recordings/Jagadamba Records)
9) Tame Impala - Innerspeaker - (Modular Recordings)
10) Yeasayer - Odd Blood (Secretly Canadian & Mute Records)
11) Dale Ernhardt Jr - Horse Power EP (Quite Scientific Records)
12) Ninja Tune XX Box  - Ninja Tune Comp


13) Selah Sue - Raggamuffin EP
14) Bruce Haack – Farad: The Electric Voice (Stones Throw)
15) Onra – Long Distance (All City / Favorite)
16) Light Sounds Dark - Return Of The Sherm LP (Phonica Records)
17) Janelle Monae - Archandroid (Wondaland Arts Society)
18) Earl Sweatshirt, Earl (Odd Future)  





Mixtapes

19) Jay Electonica - "Act II: Patents Of Nobility (The Turn)"
20) A Chicago Footwork Compilation - "Bangs and Works Vol.1" 
21) Mansions on the Moon - "Paradise"
22) Theophilus London – "I Want You" 
23) DJ Jazzy Jeff + Mick Boogie: "Summertime: The Mixtape”


(the following video is NSFW)

12" /7"
24) Aeroplane - "We Can't Fly" 12" (Eskimo Recordings)
24) Cults – "Go Outside" 7" (Forest Family Records)
26) DJ Harvey – Doc Severson "You Put the Shine On Me/ Be With You" 12"
27) Morgan Geist aka “Storm Queen” – “Look Right Through” feat Damon C Scott (Environ Records) 12"
28) Dennis Ferrer – "Hey Hey" 12" (Objektivity)
29) Tennis  - "Marathon" 7" (Fat Possum)
30) James Blake - "Limit to Your Love"/ "CMYK" 10" (Hemlock)

The Art of the LP Cover- Women In White, In Celebration of the Winter Solstice

Posted by Mr. Chadwick, December 20, 2010 11:40am | Post a Comment
Check out another "women in white" post from 2008 here.

(Wherein I review rad, rainy resources.)

Posted by Job O Brother, December 20, 2010 11:38am | Post a Comment

Merry Christmas from the homeless guy who stole your candles!

Santa, it would seem, heard my Christmas wish and brought me lots of rain. While not convenient to my compulsive walks to the grocery store for whatever culinary whims o’ertake me, I’ll trade easy access to the “Asian food aisle” for gloomy storm-clouds any old day. It’s not just the weather itself, it’s the music, movies, food and activities that I save for just such an occasion. What are they? I’m pretending you ask – Why, I’ll tell you!


Boner.


Let’s start with alcohol, as any good day does. This is the season for a cocktail staple of mine: hot toddies, of the whiskey variety. It’s so simple, I hesitate to say this is a recipe, any more than boiling spaghetti and dumping a jar of sauce on it is a “recipe,” but if I’ve learned anything about you earthlings, it’s that when cooking doesn’t come naturally, it doesn’t come at all. So here goes…

1.)  Simply boil water. If you need instructions for this, stop now and don’t ever, ever step into a kitchen.

2.)  While you wait for your water, squeeze the juice from one whole lemon, removing any seeds. Save the seeds and, in another blog, I’ll show you how you can use these dried lemon seeds to make the ugliest, stupidest necklace ever.

Domination & Dragons: Georges Bataille's Story of the Eye (2003) & How to Train Your Dragon (2010)

Posted by Charles Reece, December 19, 2010 11:29pm | Post a Comment

Andrew McElhinney's adaptation of Georges Bataille's perverse classic, Story of the Eye, is transgressive in the way Lady GaGa challenges our notions of sexual identity. Its cast seems to have come from gay S&M clubs, Korn videos and Midwestern strip joints. I don't have Phil Donahue to tell me what middle America is thinking any more, so maybe the sight of a pierced black cock that looks like a Subway sandwich is still provocative up in Bakersfield. I'm certain my 95-year old grandmother would rather watch her soaps, but so would I. I knew I was in for a boring ride when the film opened with actual footage of a baby's birth, as if Hollywood still had Rob and Laura Petrie sleeping in single beds. Then came a scene with the Korn extra controlling via a joystick two dancing women with torsos painted to look like faces under big top hats. Guess what the joystick is replaced with through the magic of montage. Hasn't the phallic joystick become such a frozen metaphor at this point that it's literal? This is hardly the metonymic eroticism Roland Barthes once analyzed where eyes, eggs and breasts become signs of each other through cleverly structured vignettes of abject sexuality. Whereas Bataille's love story begins with a decapitated cyclist, McElhinney shows the application of a condom to promote safe sex! After about 5 minutes of gay porn involving a bleached blonde sailor boy pitted against the aforementioned Moby Dick of, umm, deli sandwiches, I began to fast forward, looking for anything involving buttocks and egg cracking, but to no avail. Maybe it's old-fashioned to be thinking of the halcyon days of transgression, however McElhinney's sexual terrain would've been flyover country back in de Sade's time.


You're better off watching Apocalypto, where Mel Gibson displays true Bataillean flair by taking his time in showing a Mayan sacrifice. As with the mortification of Jesus' body in The Passion of Christ, Gibson eroticizes the sacrificial act, beginning with the arduous walk up the steps of the great temple to the removal of the victim's heart to his beheading and then to the tossing of the headless corpse down the steps. (Inspired, he goes on to show another sacrifice, albeit it in not quite as much detail.) In both films, pain builds until it's released through violent ejaculation. Gibson was particularly interested in why a civilization like the Mayans (one could ask the same of the Romans), rationally capable of creating such architectural marvels, would treat another human so cruelly. For Bataille, it had to do with the material baseness of any rational structure, society's blindspot, or the madness that makes it all possible. Against the ratio of the Hegelian master-slave dialectic, he suggested that Aztec sacrifice (which Gibson had considered using, but went with the Mayans instead) was a way of resisting the reduction of human life into pure exchange value. While the slave can be exchanged in a rational system, the sacrifice is pure excess, or waste, and can't be used for anything else. In this manner, it becomes sacred ("heterogeneous"), suggestive of something beyond the homogenizing structures their culture placed upon them, and was therefore a foundational act.   


In Dean DeBlois and Chris Sanders' (or should I say Dreamworks') How to Train Your Dragon, pure master-servant equilibrium is established, in which the once ballyhooed End of History occurs when the humans achieve proper mastery over nature qua dragons. It's the story of a little, effete Viking boy, who's the embarrassment of his macho father, becoming the glorious hero of the town after he learns how to control the dragons by befriending one of them. Until then, the Vikings and dragons were mortal enemies on a seemingly equal level. I suppose this teaches kids something about reality. And, to its credit, the film celebrates amputation (something that The Walking Dead, an adult show about zombies, chickens out on). But it has a parallel to the old racist canard that blacks are better off for being brought to the States as slaves because of the miserable state of affairs back in Africa. It turns out, you see, that all the dragons are slaves to a much bigger, tyrannical dragon. At the end of the picture, they find more peace and happiness serving the humans than they ever did serving one of their own. In other words, the dragons never rise above their exchange value, since they see no alternative. Perhaps a dragon sacrifice is in order.

December 19, 2010: Red

Posted by phil blankenship, December 19, 2010 04:45pm | Post a Comment

December 19, 2010: The Fighter

Posted by phil blankenship, December 19, 2010 01:40pm | Post a Comment

SF DJ Dance Party Temptation Pays Tribute to Manchester's Rich Musical Legacy

Posted by Billyjam, December 18, 2010 11:23am | Post a Comment
"And God Created Manchester (Pt 1)" from Rock Family Trees

As the above excerpt from the the Rock Family Trees series about the history of the Manchester music scene (see Pt 2 and Pt 3) nicely outlines, and as most of us Smiths/Joy Division etc. fans already well know, Manchester, England has an incredibly rich musical legacy. It spans several decades with a seemingly never ending stream of talented bands and artists including (to name but a handful) New Morrissey, Manchester UnitedOrder, The Stone Roses, James, 808 State, The Durutti Column, The Happy Monday, The Inspiral Carpets, The Fall, Autechre, The Ting Tings, and Herman's Hermits.

Also well aware of this are the music loving folks who throw the ongoing Bay Area electro/80's/indie/goth themed Temptation party. So for tonight's (sure to be hella fun) Temptation party at Cat Club, the theme is Manchester and that's what the DJs will be spinning all night long. I caught up with Temptation DJ/promoter DJ Damon, who co-produces the Bay Area club night with Dangerous Dan and Skip, and who holds a special place in his heart for Manchester's rich musical history to ask him about tonight's party and Manchester music in general.

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December 17, 2010: The Next Three Days

Posted by phil blankenship, December 17, 2010 10:09pm | Post a Comment

Gurp Fest 2010 Presents the (For Now) Underground Musical Collective & Movement Known as Gurp City

Posted by Billyjam, December 17, 2010 05:58pm | Post a Comment

In honor of tonight's big Gurp Fest 2010 at Club Six in San Francisco, the Amoeblog offers an overview of the San Francisco based hip-hop movement / collective known as Gurp City. What follows is a general history and a guide to some of the unique slang used by its members, plus a listing of the many talented artists (and the many more who are loosely affiliated) involved in this party-driven, homegrown underground hip-hop movement. Though based in San Francisco, it but has members beyond, all the way down to the Gurpy South.

Gurp City South will be well represented at tonight's Gurp Fest with (NJ by way of NC) emcee Foulmouth Jerk, Fist Fam, and Bay transplant & orchestrator of tonight's event TopR, who took the word of Gurp City with him when he moved to Asheville, NC. This article includes TopR's description of the Gurp City movement.

Other performers tonight include such key Gurp City members as Z-Man, Eddie K & Brandon K's Trunk Drank, Grand Invincible (Luke Sick from Sacred Hoop + DJ Eons), DJ Quest, Cutty Bang (aka Dick Nasty), Rec League, BOAC, DJ Cue and DJ 2 Fresh.

And given that the term to gurp means to party hard, a belief tha all of Gurp City's members hold close to their heart, tonight's Gurp Fest should be quite the party!

Z-Man "Gurp With Me" (2004)

Although centered in “The City in a Bottle” (San Francisco), the origins oTopRf Gurp City are in two other locations at the end of the nineties: the city of Chico, CA and the long gone, beloved record/hip-hop store in Daly City, Cue's Hip Hop Shop. It was run by DJ Cue of the legendary Bay Area DJ groups Bulletproof Scratch Hamsters/Space Travelers and was a gathering point for hip-hop minds and talents. The shop may be gone but DJ Cue is still going strong and will be at tonight's event. It's been organized by TopR (aka Topper Holiday), once a very familiar face at Amoeba San Francisco, where he used to hang out years ago and in 2008 did an instore performance. Additionally, back in 2005 TopR appeared on the Amoeba Music Compilation Vol. 5 with a song that mentioned Amoeba in its lyrics.

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Spenser's Best Shows of 2010

Posted by The Bay Area Crew, December 17, 2010 05:53pm | Post a Comment
Wild Flag/Grass Widow @ Bottom Of The Hill (San Francisco)

Take 2 parts Sleater Kinney, plus 1 part Helium, plus 1 part Minders and you get an incredible super-group of ladies. Not to mention they had only been a band for 2 or 3 months before embarking on their first tour and they were incredibly tight together! Can’t wait for recorded material!


Go Sailor @ Slumberland Records' 20th Anniversary @ The Rickshaw Stop (San Francisco)

I have been waiting YEARS to see this band actually play live. I got into them 4 or 5 years after they had broken up and shat myself when it was announced that they were reuniting for 3 shows. It was everything I had hoped for, plus that day also saw reunions of Henry’s Dress and Boyracer as well, but nothing compared to Rose, Linton and Paul playing the most influential songs of my 20’s.


Need/Bangs/CAverage/Thrones @ Berbati’s Pan (Portland)

Another case where I got into The Need right after they had broken up. This was a special experience because it also involved a road trip up to the Northwest with co-workers and friends. The Need were unbelievable! Bangs, who I saw the last time at their last show in Olympia, were spot on, and CAverage and Thrones completed the throwback to the Evergreen days for me. It made me want to move back up to the Northwest, so that definitely lands it on this list, if not list of best show experiences ever.

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out this week 11/30 & 12/7 & 12/14...inception...black swan...social network...the golden globes and the oscars...

Posted by Brad Schelden, December 17, 2010 05:34pm | Post a Comment

The year is quickly drawing to an end -- Christmas Eve is a week away, and New Year's Eve is two weeks from today! I really do love this time of year. I love the weather in December. I love all the movies that come out at the end of the year. I love the holidays. I love the best of the year lists. I am not ashamed to love December. As the music releases slow down this month, the big movies are all coming out this month -- movies hoping to get nominated for Oscars tend to come out toward the end of the year. The Golden Globes Nominations just came out this week! The Golden Globes take place on Sunday, January 16th. Oscar Nominations come out on Tuesday, January 25th and the Oscar ceremony is on Sunday February 27th! They decided to change the Best Picture category for the Oscars last year to ten nominees. The Golden Globes have always had 10. There are five comedy / musical nominees and five dramas. I think it is easy to pick 10 best pictures every year but the Foreign Press seems to have a hard time coming up with 5 comedies and musicals. The nominees for comedy/musical are a bit ridiculous this year. I am embarrassed for them! The 5 nominees for Drama are Inception, Black Swan, The Fighter, The King's Speech, & The Social Network. Now that the Oscars have 10 nominees, these films are almost guaranteed to also get nominated for the Oscar for Best Picture. These films will probably be joined by Toy Story 3, True Grit, & The Kids Are Alright. The last 2 nominees will probably be 127 HoursThe Town. Maybe Winter's Bone, Biutiful or Get Low will sneak in there. I would love to see Never Let Me Go, Animal Kingdom, or Ghost Writer included. These were three of my favorites this year. But they will most likely be looked over.

The Golden Globe nominations for Best Comedy or Musical are Alice in Wonderland, Burlesque, The Kids Are Alright, Red,The Tourist. The Kids Are Alright is really the only movie that belongs in this category and will most likely be the one to win. Burlesque is one of the worst scripts and worst movies of the year! Step Up 3D would have actually made more sense in this category! Burlesque is the only musical in the list, so maybe that's how it made the cut. I love Tim Burton but was not a fan at all of Alice In Wonderland, and nominating Red & The Tourist just does not make sense. This is not the Action/Thriller category. They are not comedies and shouldn't be nominated for anything. They are clearly just being lazy and trying to get the stars to attend their ceremony. I know it has not been a great year for comedies -- there was no 40 Year Old Virgin or Hangover this year. There was no Tootsie or Mrs. Doubtfire. I didn't see The Other Guys or Due Date yet but they probably don't deserve nominations anyway. Why not nominate Date Night if you are going to nominate something like The Tourist? The Social Network is probably more of a comedy than The Tourist. My picks for Best Comedy or Musical would have been The Kids Are Alright, Scott Pilgrim Vs. the World, Toy Story 3, Please Give, & Cyrus. I really think the Globes should just get rid of the comedy / musical category. There are just not that many musicals anymore so why not just have ten nominees for best picture? Last year they had slightly better picks for Best Comedy or Musical. The Hangover won the Globe. The other nominees were 500 Days of Summer, It's Complicated, Julie & Julia,Nine. Well, at least two of these were good comedies. Maybe the studios should start concentrating on putting out some better comedies. We had some great ones in the 60's and some amazing comedies in the 80's but not so much anymore. The nominees in 1984 were Yentl, The Big Chill, Flashdance, Trading Places, & Zelig. The nominees in 1974 were American Graffiti, Jesus Christ Superstar, Paper Moon, Tom Sawyer, & A Touch of Class. Some of the past winners in this category were Toy Story 2, The Lion King, The Player, Beauty & the Beast, Tootsie, Coal Miner's Daughter, A Star Is Born, Cabaret, The Graduate, & The Sound of Music. Sometimes they do get it right.

Some of the Oscar movies are also starting to come out on DVD. Inception came out on DVD and Bluray on December 7th. I know some people did not love this movie as much as I did but it is currently fighting for the number one spot on my top movies of the year list. Toy Story 3 and The Kids Are Alright are both already out on DVD. The Town came out on DVD and Blu-ray today -- a special Friday street date for you. Winter's Bone is also out now on DVD. Black Swan & The King's Speech are both out in theaters now. I just saw them both this week; I really loved Black Swan and Colin Firth was amazing in The King's Speech! You can also still catch 127 Hours and The Social Network in theaters. The Fighter Rabbit Hole open up this weekend. True Grit comes out next week and Blue Valentine opens December 31st. Ghost Writer is out now on DVD, Animal Kingdom on January 18th and Never Let Me Go comes out February 1st. 

There have also been some great scores and soundtracks to go along with these end of year movies. The Tron Legacy score is probably my favorite of the year. It doesn't sound like a normal Daft Punk album but they have done a really good job composing their first soundtrack. The Social Network score is composed by Trent Reznor and was released a couple of weeks ago. The Black Swan score is composed by the brilliant Clint Mansell. That was just released at the end of last month. You have some good movies to go out and see this week and also probably have some music to catch up on as well! I am still working on my top 50 albums of the year but I will be posting that next week. So get ready! In the meantime, check out my list of favorite DVDs, soundtracks, Blurays, video games, TV shows, and 7"s of 2010 right here!






buy
Tron Legacy soundtrack by Daft Punk











buy
Black Swan soundtrack by Clint Mansell












buy
Inception Blu-ray








also out 11/30...





Imaginary Friends by Freezepop











Paisajes by Tristeza







also out 12/7...






Motion Makes Me Last by Eluvium











Fruit that Ate Itself reissue by Modest Mouse











Sad Sappy Sucker reissue by Modest Mouse











Ghost Blonde by No Joy











All Delighted by Sufjan Stevens







also out 12/14...






III/IV by Ryan Adams & the Cardinals











Farmer's Daughter by Crystal Bowersox











Michael by Michael Jackson











Kandi Koated by Kandi











Love Letter by R. Kelly




His Name is Don Van Vliet and He Dedicates His Music to Animals and Children. Rest in Peace, Captain Beefheart

Posted by Billyjam, December 17, 2010 03:23pm | Post a Comment
             TV profile + interview Captain Beefheart

About an hour ago word started circulating that one of the greatest and most pioneering artists of modern music has left us. Captain Beefheart (born Don Van Vliet) died today (December 17), a victim of of multiple sclerosis. He was 69. The word "pioneer" is often loosely thrown about in referencing certain artists but Captain Beefheart truly was a pioneer of so many new sounds. In his music I can hear (to name but a few) punk,post-punk, all been made years before they had tags or before anyone else was making them. There's so many artists who owe a lot to Captain Beefheart who, more than any other artist, broke down the traditional approach to making music. Rest in peace, Captain Beefheart!

Captain Beefheart & Magic Band - "Sure 'nuff 'n Yes I Do"

Hip-Hop Rap Up 12:17:10: Big Rich, Andre Nickatina, & Hugh E MC Represent the Fillmore District of SF + Bay Gig Guide for the Weekend

Posted by Billyjam, December 16, 2010 09:30pm | Post a Comment
Amoeba Music San Francisco Weekly Hip-Hop Top Five Chart: 12:17:10


1) T.I. No Mercy (Grand Hustle)

2) Andre Nickatina/Smoov-E The King & Mr. Biscuits (I-Khan Dist.)

3) Big Rich Built to Last (Big Rich Music)

4) Buff1 & Rhettmatic Crown Royale (ASide)

5) Redman Reggie (Island Def Jam)

Special thanks to Luis at the San Francisco store for this week's top five chart. Beyond the top five, Luis notes that, "Then there's the Kanye, Curren$y and Damu the Fudgemunk, which is super dope!" The latter is also a favorite of DJ Inti at the Berkeley Amoeba, where it was a hip-hop chart contender last week. The latest SF Amoeba chart includes some local Fillmore district SF flavor from both Big Rich and Andre Nickatina. His latest outing is a joint project with his regular studio collaborator, the Tennessee to The Bay transplant Smoov E, who also sometimes goes by the name Smoov Biscuits. That explains the title of their new joint release, The King & Mr. Biscuits, which appears on Nicatina's label, I-Khan Distribution.  The eleven track album features great tracks such as "For The Green (Remix) and "Genuine Draft (Remix)."

Andre Nickatina & Smoov-E "Genuine Draft (Remix)"

Meanwhile, Big Rich, who last year dropped Heart Of The City, is back with his impressive latest two-part release. Built to Last (Big Rich Music) is both an album and a documentary (CD + DVD) from the successful SF artist who has had a mixed year. Musically, he's kept busy and been artistically satisfied, he Big Rich Built to Lastsays, having spent the greater part of 2010 out on the road.

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California Fool's Gold -- Exploring Angeleno Heights

Posted by Eric Brightwell, December 16, 2010 03:00pm | Post a Comment

ANGELENO HEIGHTS

  

Angeleno Heights is a neighborhood in Los Angeles' Mideast Side. It's the second oldest suburb of the city after Bunker Hill (which is no longer suburban). After the Victorian homes of Bunker Hill were razed in the 1950s, Angeleno Heights became the largest concentration of Victorian homes, or "painted ladies" in the city.


Pendersleigh & Sons' Official Map of Angeleno Heights


Angeleno Heights was always predominantly residential and it remains a quiet neighborhood dotted with churches with Echo Park to the west, the Echo Park neighborhood of Sunset Heights to the north, the Echo Park neighborhood of Victor Heights and the Chinatown neighborhood of Alpine Hill to the east, the downtown Civic Center to the southeast, and Historic Filipinotown and Temple-Beaudry to the south. Many people consider it a district within Echo Park although in reality it predates Echo Park's existence by a good few years and has a very different character from its larger, younger neighbor.

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top tens of 2010...my favorite dvds and tv shows of the year...

Posted by Brad Schelden, December 15, 2010 05:53pm | Post a Comment
I am busy at work on my top 50 albums of the year! I will most likely be posting those on the blog next week but I decided to go ahead and post my other best of lists of the year now. We still have a couple of weeks left in the year so the movies list will most likely change, as I plan on seeing about 10 more movies before the year is over so my top ten movies of the year will also be posted in the next couple of weeks. What I have for you today is my top dvds and blu-rays for the year, my top TV shows & video games, my favorite 7"s and soundtracks....It has been a really great year! Tons of stuff to keep my glued to my TV screen...

TOP TEN DVD RELEASES  OF THE YEAR...






TV CARNAGE: LET'S WORK IT OUT!











BEST OF SOUL TRAIN












EVERYTHING IS TERRIBLE 2












ALL ABOUT EVIL












NEVER SLEEP AGAIN











RED RIDING TRILOGY












SLUMBER PARTY MASSACRE













LARRY SANDERS SHOW












T.A.M.I. SHOW












BLUR-NO DISTANCE LEFT TO RUN









TOP TEN BLU-RAY RELEASES OF THE YEAR...







ALIEN ANTHOLOGY











GRINDHOUSE











THE EXORCIST












SEVEN










PSYCHO










SHOWGIRLS












HOUSE










BAADER MEINHOF COMPLEX











WHAT'S UP, DOC?











HOUSE OF THE DEVIL









TOP FIVE VIDEO GAMES...






EPIC MICKEY WII












LEGO HARRY POTTER YEARS 1-4 WII













NEW SUPER MARIO BROS. WII











KIRBY'S EPIC YARN WII












RED DEAD REDEMPTION PS3







TOP TEN T.V SHOWS OF THE YEAR...





MAD MEN SEASON 4












BREAKING BAD SEASON 1-3










BIG LOVE SEASON 4









THE WALKING DEAD SEASON 1








TRUE BLOOD SEASON 3








30 ROCK SEASON 4/5










PARTY DOWN SEASON 2










PARKS & RECREATION SEASON 2











THE OFFICE SEASON 6/7










FAMILY GUY







TOP TEN 7"S OF THE YEAR
...






ARIEL PINK-ROUND & ROUND (4AD)









CONAN O'BRIEN-AND THEY CALL ME MAD? (URP)









WILD NOTHING-CLOUDBUSTING (CAPTURED TRACKS)








BEST COAST-SUN WAS HIGH (ART FAG)








AVI BUFFALO-WHAT'S IN IT FOR (SUB POP)









ABE VIGODA-THROWING SHADE (POST PRESENT MEDIUM)









THE DRUMS-LET'S GO SURFING (MOSHI MOSHI)









XX-VCR (YOUNG TURKS)








XIU XIU/PARANTHETICAL GIRLS-MORRISSEY/SMITHS (UPSET THE RHYTHM)









THE DECEMBERISTS-JANUARY HYMN (CAPITOL)







TOP FIVE SOUNDTRACKS OF THE YEAR




TRON LEGACY (Daft Punk)









SCOTT PILGRIM VS. THE WORLD (Nigel Godrich)









MESRINE (Marcus Beltrami)









BLACK SWAN (Clint Mansell)









THE SOCIAL NETWORK (Trent Reznor)




Amoeba Berkeley's 2010 Amoebapalooza

Posted by The Bay Area Crew, December 15, 2010 04:31pm | Post a Comment

by Evan Litwack
images by Ryan Stark

Last Sunday, the staff of Amoeba Music Berkeley was brought together for their annual Amoebapalooza holiday party, which combined the talented musicianship of many of Amoeba Berkeley’s key figures with some good-old fashioned celebrating. The concert party was hosted at the Stork Club in Oakland, which provided the perfect intimate atmosphere and stage setting for Amoeba’s diverse personalities to perform and interact in. Amoebites of all age groups and walks of life were in attendance with friends, including past employees and long time fans, and every room of the Stork Club was buzzing with the energy and enthusiasm of a hundred hardcore music heads in unison. Excitement lingered in the air as weeks of waiting to see colleagues and friends show their true musical colors built itself to a head. Thankfully, none of the bands disappointed.




Maestro's Choice

People were still arriving and buzzing amongst themselves when the evening’s first band, Maestro’s Choice, set their equipment on stage and started the night off on a moody, downtempo note. Michael Henning worked the percussion and looping while Kai Keya complimented his arrangements on flute. There was some curiosity in the crowd surrounding Kai Keya, who hadn’t performed in public for years, and folks were impressed by his playing and by the chemistry between the two musicians. Those who know Michael’s band The Why Because would have been certain to appreciate this set. 

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New 12" Releases 12/15 @ Amoeba Hollywood - CV313, Kink & Neville Watson, MCDE, Virgo, Alland Byallo, Brendon Moeller & more

Posted by Oliver / Matt / Jordan, December 15, 2010 10:33am | Post a Comment

CV313
Seconds To Forever 12”
Echospace

This is the fourth EP from the cv313 album Dimensional Space. "Seconds To Forever" was originally planned for Echospace 010, but due to the nature of old Ampex tape, the track was unable to be restored -- but as a result, it was remodeled for this special limited release. Expect gorgeous plumes of sound, deeper than the ocean floor. The remodel strikes a space-age groove with live congas. The reprise of "Beyond The Clouds" is an extended (over 20 minutes long!) psychedelic trip.



KiNK & NEVILLE WATSON
Metropole 12”
Hour House Is Your Rush

KiNK & Neville Watson deliver two winning tracks that combine the best elements of Chicago house (for the body) and Detroit techno (for the soul), which has become their sound signature. Where "Metropole" will cause ruckus on the dancefloor at peak-time moments, "The Long Wait" is a deeper affair, perfect for late/after hours. Raw and dirty house music. When music is this good, let there be renaissance!
Listen to "Metropole" here:




MOTOR CITY DRUM ENSEMBLE
Raw Cuts 5 & 6 12"
MCDE

This is the long-awaited return of the Raw Cuts series from Motor City Drum Ensemble. Another huge one: the A-side has the trademark MCDE "hook" while the flip goes deep into late-night territory. This 12" has been played and supported by Gilles Peterson, Simbad, Karizma, Alex From Tokyo, Jazzanova, Gilb-r, Dixon, Âme, Domu, and many more. 
Listen to "Raw Cuts 5" here:




VIRGO
Virgo 2x12"
Rush Hour

Originally released in 1989 on Radical Records in the UK, and as a series of EPs on Trax Records in the U.S., this is a very special record, and truly a contender for best house album ever made. Virgo is Chicago house duo Merwyn Sanders and Eric Lewis, who also recorded as Ace & The Sandman and M.E. and shouldn't be confused with the other Virgo of Vince Lawrence and company. This album does not have one filler; all tracks are essential pieces of house music. Limited release with new artwork and remastered tracks.
Listen to "Ride" here:




ALLAND BYALLO
Discovaries 12"
Poker Flat

Hailing from San Francisco, DJ and producer Alland Byallo has created his own unique sound out of a love for deep, soulful house combined with more edgy techno moments. This brilliant 2-tracker also marks Alland's arrival in his new home of Berlin. "Discovaries" has a healthy amount of Berlin's reduced techno affinity rooted within its phasing, growing p-funk waves. Tense, moody, and of course, drenched with attention to detail, this is a grower in the true Poker Flat style.




ROMAN IV
La Paloma 12”
Running Back

Roman Flügel pursues his more contemplative side under his Roman IV moniker. "La Paloma" is exactly that kind of perpetual and lulling marathon jam that recollects his Testament tracks. Having said that, "Sa Caleta" looks for a more immediate hit. With a rigid punch and some greasy layers, you get Roman's take on the current or recurrent slow-motion disco craze. Finally, "Lucy" rolls over again, starts where "La Paloma" ended and makes its way up to a subliminal hook-line.




BRENDON MOELLER
Close Up EP 12"
Ann Aimee

New York-based South African, Brendon Moeller has been producing music since 1994. His compositions have been released on Deep Space Media, Third Ear Records, Echocord, Mule Musiq, Rekids and more. He records as Brendon Moeller, Beat Pharmacy and Echologist. Dub, techno, jazz, Afrobeat and psychedelia are inspirations that appear in most of his music. Whether it be serious dancefloor bizniz, or dubbed-out bass-scapes, his music always possesses a quality and signature that have helped him become the prolific force he is today.
Listen to "Mobility" here:



2 AM/FM
Desolate Cities/Give This World 10"
MOS

A very special set from James T. Cotton and D'Marc Cantu, teaming up as 2AM/FM for more serious Chicago house roughness. "Desolate Cities" has all the ingredients you love to hear in a proper dark house track, and reminds of the best works by Phuture. "Give This World" rides more on the melodic tip, and harkens back to classic tracks by Virgo, Ron Trent and G-Strings. Top quality Chicago house!
Listen to "Desolate Cities" here:





DELTA FUNKTIONEN
Setup Two: Fusion 12”
Ann Aimee

Darker and more sinister than all his releases before. Beats getting tighter and rougher, there's no chance to escape. Welcome to the world of Delta Funktionen. This second part of his Setup EPs brings three times dark, heavy, soaking techno tracks, with the otherworldly track "Conflict Data" closing the Setup. Bottom of Form.
Listen to "Devolution" here:




RNDM
Hideway Lane EP 12”
Laid

Vienna born and raised Oliver Kargl (aka RNDM)'s newest trilogy on Laid is a passionate commitment to sound -- the sound of Ron Trent, Mr. Fingers, Frankie Knuckles and countless others who are part of his unconscious reference system of countless nights he spent with this music we call house. This is pure devotion to the cause of joy. Includes a mix by Shine.



ANTHONY 'SHAKE' SHAKIR: Frictionalism 1994-2009 Part 3 12"
SEHOU: To Who Love 12”
TOLGA FIDAN: Ballads 12"
MICHA KLANG: Babes In The Woods EP 12”
TRAVERSABLE WORMHOLE: The Remixes Pt. 05 12"
JAY HAZE (FEAT. LAILA TOV & RICARDO VILLALOBOS): I Wait For You 12"
JOHANNES HEIL: Loving Remixes 12”
DER RAUBER UND DER PRINZ: Jagd Auf Den Hirsch 12"
MARC ANTONA & RE-UP: The Owl EP 12"
STIMMING: Change EP 12"
DIGITAL MYSTIKZ: Urban Ethics 3x12"
FEBRUARY & MARS: Dragonflies 12"
MIHAI POPOVICIU: Trapped In Brakets 12"
SATYR/WAREIKA: Roadrunner/Rumba Swing 12”
ALVEOL: Glitter Path 12" ALFABET: A/B 12"
AARDVARCK: Nosestep EP 12"
MAYDAY: Relics Sampler 12"
JEFF MILLS: Something In The Sky 6 12"
BRACKLES & SHORTSTUFF: Good Foundations 12"
COMPOUND ONE: Pum Pum Beat/Back Off 12”
TROLLEY SNATCHA: One Trick Pony 2x12"
DON CARLOS: Favorite Cup 12”
Mike Gao & Tokimonsta/LA #8 10”
Michael J Collins/NOTHING WRONG... 12”
Matty G/WATCHING YOU 12”
Brookes Brothers/LAST NIGHT 12”
Francois X/THE STORM CYCLE EP 12”
Sea Power & Change/SEA POWER... EP 12”
Dimitri From Tokyo/SAKURA BLUE EDITS 12”
Golden Fleece/DANCIN' IN THE NUDE 12”
Psychemagik/THIS MUST BE THE PLACE 12”
Mandre/SOLAR FLIGHT 12”
Johnny Clark vs Mala/SINNERS 12”
Myron and E/COLD GAME 7”
Myron and E/ITS A SHAME 7”
Cormac/COLD (MISS KITTIN REMIX) 12"
Caspa/LOST IN BED-STUY 12”
Maceo Plex/VIBE YOUR LOVE 12”
Todd Terje/GIORGIO MORODER + MORE EP 12”
Duffstep/CLOSE (YAM WHO? REMIX) 12”
Various/MOSAIC VOL. 1 SAMPLER #1 12”
Breton/COUNTER BALANCE EP 12”
Evan Evans/PART SEVEN 12"
Pepper Pots/WAITING FOR CHRISTMAS 7”
Silkie/SLOW JAM 12”
T. Williams/PEOPLE'S CHOICE 12”
Bad Autopsy/BAD AUTOPSY EP 12”
House of Jezebel/LOVE & HAPPINESS 12”
Others & Distinction/DISKO 12”
Vondelpark/SAUNA EP 12"

All the Latest in the Classical Section!

Posted by Amoebite, December 15, 2010 09:27am | Post a Comment

For all the latest in our stores' Classical sections, you've come to the right place! Please read on for sale info, reviews of new releases and the top 20 concertos and symphonies you need to own!

amoeba classical section


AMOEBA SAN FRANCISCO CLASSICAL NEWS
by Stacey

Sale News!
These hot new titles are on sale until Christmas Eve...and make great stocking stuffers.

Vittorio Grigolo - The Italian Tenor ($12.98)
Discover what all the fuss is about with the debut solo recording of this exciting young talent.

David Braid & Canadian Brass - Spirit Dance ($13.98)
Two award-winning Canadian artists join forces to create a rhythmic concoction of jazz, classical and world music.

Anonymous 4 - The Cherry Tree: Songs, Carols & Ballads for Christmas ($16.98)
There are few ensembles in the world who can compete with Anonymous 4 for sheer beauty.  Let this wonderful collection of medieval English carols and Anglo-American spiritual songs sooth away your holiday stress.

Angèle Dubeau & La Pietà - Noël ($14.98)
Violinist Dubeau and her string ensemble take you on a joyous tour of the world's Christmas music.

Continue reading...

New Groove: Toro Y Moi - "Still Sound"

Posted by Smiles Davis, December 14, 2010 02:38pm | Post a Comment

Fresh off the press: "Still Sounds" is the new laid back 70's disco groove by Toro Y Moi. If you haven't already heard his infection experimental electro pop debut album Causers of This, do yourself a favor and give it a listen. "Still Sounds" is from his forthcoming album, Underneath the Pine, which drops February 22, 2011 via Carpark.

Still Sound by fantasma_

{via www.deathandtaxesmag}

Rickey (Uhuru Maggot) Vincent's Top Ten Funk Sessions of 2010

Posted by Billyjam, December 13, 2010 04:19pm | Post a Comment
Rickey Vincent The History of Funk
Special thanks to my man Rickey "Uhuru Maggot" Vincent for supplying the Amoeblog with his enlightening Top Ten Funk Sessions of 2010 list that includes the likes of Bernie Worrell's SociaLybrium, Nick Rosen, and Punk Funk Mob. In addition to his Top Ten, Vincent has included some "also digging" additional picks.

Rickey Vincent, who was interviewed about his favorite topic here last year, literally wrote the book on funk music.
Vincent's acclaimed music history book Funk: The Music, the People, and the Rhythm of The One (St. Martin's Press), which won the ASCAP Deems Taylor Award, is the ultimate guide to funk music and its rich history.

Rickey Vincent, who many know from his long-running, popular KPFA 94.1FM radio show The History of Funk (10pm-midnight Fridays) knows more about funk than anyone I know. Not surprisingly, as well as being an author & journalist, he is also an educator on the subject and has taught classes at both City College of San Francisco and SF State University.

Vincent's 2010 Top Ten follows:

Rickey Vincent's Top Ten Funk Sessions of 2010


Another year and another wide ranging collection of funky discs have come my way, and I’m going to share my favorite ones from the year. The best criteria I can give is that these discs have been playing in my iPod nonstop since they came out. Simple as that.

Continue reading...

Cruise to Mexico: Part 8

Posted by Job O Brother, December 13, 2010 02:09pm | Post a Comment

(A lady raises her pinky.)


Day 5 (Part 1)

Friday. September 16, 2010

AT SEA




The best part of mornings on-board a cruise ship is waking up to the scent, sight, and sound of your ship at sea. The Pacific Ocean has a myriad of blues in her pallet, all of them are mesmerizing and crushable. For real. If the Pacific Ocean were a lady, I would totally marry her.

The worst part of mornings on-board a cruise ship are the breakfasts. It’s as though they were prepared by contestants on Top Chef who were given the challenge to “make as many things as possible using only white flour and remember – no fresh ingredients!”

By the episode’s end, my tummy loses. Bacon that remarkably resembles fried leather shoes, eggs that looked like they came from a chicken’s leukemia ward, fruit salads that seemed so depressed you’d think they should be sprinkled with Prozac, not sugar – and since I couldn’t bring myself to eat any of these aforementioned items, I was left with the option of pancakes covered in waffle cupcakes, drizzled in biscuits with a dash of bagel. One bite of this, and coffee became my only morning meal.

"I just feel like I'm never gonna accomplish anything that matters."

There are so many invalids on-board, trudging slowly, hunched over stainless-steel canes or walkers, oxygen tanks everywhere underfoot – you can easily forget you’re on a luxury liner, not a retirement home. The greatest danger is not that the ship will sink, but that you’ll get run-over by a Rascal Scooter.

Faces of Death: Cruise Ship Edition

By lunchtime I was ravenous – the coffee that became my only breakfast was, in turn, making a meal of my stomach lining. By Day 5, I decided to try lunch in the main dining room. Up till then, most of my days were off-ship so I could eat from vendors at the ports. I was curious to see if formal lunch was as good as the formal dinners.

It wasn’t. I ordered a salad in which each separate ingredient somehow tasted like water. Put them all together and you get, well, a whole lot of water, but with texture. Despite this disappointment, there was a singular joy in my lunchtime: it was the first meal there where I didn’t have to hear the staff singing “Happy Birthday” to someone. Yay, God!

Continue reading...

Five World LPs From 2010 You Must Get - Part 1

Posted by Gomez Comes Alive!, December 13, 2010 09:12am | Post a Comment

Anibal Velaquez
-Mambo Loco

Probably my most abused LP that I bought this year. I can’t tell how many times I’ve played Mambo Loco at shows or just sitting at home. Velaquez is a master of the accordion and very influential in bringing Colombian Cumbia to the rest of the world. I found that his outside influences, mostly from Cuban music, made his sound easier for people to digest. In my DJ sets, Mambo Loco served as a gateway into Salsa or Merengue or out of that into Cumbia. I’m telling you, this one is straight heat! If you still aren’t a fan of Cumbia after this album, you are probably dead.



Charanjit Singh
Ten Ragas To A Disco Beat

Does House Music have its roots with Charanjit Singh and his box of archaic early 80’s electronic equipment? That is debatable, but what isn’t is that Singh’s electronic Indian Ragas contained some of the freshest sounds to hit my ear in a while. "Raga Bairagi," my favorite track, is a cluster of different Indian influences with Singh’s ear for soundtrack music. It's as if he imagined Moroder working with Herbie Hancock to create the soundtrack to the Indian version of The Warriors.

I can't help but imagine how much fun we would be having now if the Western world had embraced Charanjit Singh in the eighties like they did Ravi Shankar in the sixties.




Black Man's Cry
The Inspiration Of Fela Kuti

Let’s face it: Tribute albums are usually not that great. Then again, we are talking about Fela Kuti. What makes this release different is that it focuses on the generational and international influence of Fela Kuti’s music. Whether it was bands from Nigeria, Colombia or New York, they were all driven to cover songs by Fela and put their own stamp on his music. The vinyl version has each time period and country divided by sides of the 10” LP, which made the release more cohesive than the CD version.





Pomegranates
Persian Pop, Funk, Folk, and Psych Of The 60s & 70s

This is another LP that I have just abused this year. Because I mostly do DJ sets at Latin Music clubs I didn’t get much of a chance to bust this album out, but at home this album was on heavy rotation. This album is both sweet and sublime, a love letter from a generation of Persian music that has come and gone. Each artist on this compilation shows Western influences but is undeniably Persian at the core and you are reminded how progressive Iran was before the Iranian Revolution of 1979.





El GusanoFantasia Del Barrio

In its original release in 1975, El Gusano only made 300 copies of the all-instrumental Fantasia Del Barrio and it came and went. The band from Cotulla, New Mexico didn’t fit in with any style of music. It's rock with some funk and Tex-Mex influences done by four Chicanos but it is closer in sound to early Sun City Girls than it is to Little Joe Y La Familia or Santana. One of the reasons is that guitarist Eugenio Jaimez returned from duty in Vietnam in a fragile state, like most of our veterans did. I felt that the way he dealt with his pain was though his guitar and his compositions. Once the needle hits the LP you’ll notice that El Gusano is one of most expressive instrumental bands ever. In each song you can feel the joy and heaviness of returning home and the troubled times of feeling out of place. On top of that, it’s four guys jamming in a garage and making music that they loved and now, so do I.

December 12, 2010: Jackass 3D in 2D Format

Posted by phil blankenship, December 12, 2010 07:28pm | Post a Comment

The Art of the LP Cover- Trains

Posted by Mr. Chadwick, December 12, 2010 02:00pm | Post a Comment
This is my "travel time, part 2" gallery, featuring train themed covers.
Last year I did one featuring aircraft. 
Click here to check it out.

Om @ The Independent in SF 12.16

Posted by The Bay Area Crew, December 11, 2010 05:05pm | Post a Comment
om

Mash-Up of the Week: Duran Duran vs Lily Allen

Posted by Billyjam, December 11, 2010 04:59pm | Post a Comment
Duran Duran VS Lily Allen "Not A Prayer"

The mash-up of the week comes courtesy off rappy (audio) and Bobby G (video), who created the above audio/video mash-up by seamlessly blending soulful UK vocalist Lily Allen's song "Not Fair" with Duran Duran's "Save A Prayer" into a new piece they've titled "Not A Prayer."

Top Ten of 2010 by Erin

Posted by The Bay Area Crew, December 10, 2010 05:08pm | Post a Comment

joanna newsom have one on me

1. Joanna Newsom - Have One on Me
The Wire said that this album is like an overturned jewelry box, and I would agree. So deeply felt, everything else seems shallow. See her live.

glasser ring

2. Glasser - Ring
My favorite newcomer. Innovative electronics meet radio-friendly R&B. And there's something else I can't quite put my finger on...

zola jesus stridulum zola jesus valusia

3. Zola Jesus - Stridulum & Valusia EPs 
A pretty epic talent, considering she's only 21. She must be an old soul.

girls broken dreams club

4. Girls - Broken Dreams Club EP 
More 80s jangly than their debut, but always as heartbreaking.

orange juice coals to newcastle

Continue reading...

This Mistletoe Belt's For You: Christmas Rapping with the Yule Logs!

Posted by Kells, December 10, 2010 10:00am | Post a Comment


You don't have to love the holidays to love the Yule Logs, but for me it was love at first listen! Seeing them headline the annual "Christmas is the Best!" bonanza last year was an absolute blast and just thinking about their show coming up this Sunday at Amnesia in San Francisco (festivities begin with holiday crafting and shitty gift giving at 7pm, show at 9) has got me all worked up like a little insomniac on the night before Christmas --- baby, I can't wait! Making spirits bright since 2005, vocalist Marty Parker, bassist Kirt Lind, guitarist Maurice Spencer and drummer Jake Specher dole out hit after original hit of Christmas and Hannukah jams and spruced up traditional holiday classics with such contagious enthusiasm and flawless four-part harmonies that one cannot help but drink their kool-aid. With a good-time party sound that recalls British Invasion class, California surf-rock sass, pop savvy hooks and non-stop borscht belt humor the Yule Logs'll have your shoes off and your socks twistin' under your feet dancing their "Hannukah Mambo," fist-pumping to their "Runaround Rudolph" (featuring guest appearances by presidents William Howard Taft and Richard Nixon, along with Elvis "the King" Presley) and swooning for their rendition of Wham's "Last Christmas." Recently I rapped with the boys from Chico, California about their music, their muses and their state of holiday affairs, and their status as a "the world's premier Christmas and Hannukah rock 'n roll band;" here's what they had to say:

First off, how did such a cute band of dudes like yourselves come to be, as you put it, the "hardest working band in snow business"?

Marty: I look around the tour van and see nothing but repulsive, hairy ogres, but I thank you for calling us cute. In answer to your question, I love the mythology of Christmas, everything from Ebenezer to the Nativity. I love the sensory experience; pine and nutmeg is enough to bring you to your knees -- no? I wanted our music to be delicate and evocative of a tinkly little claymation soundtrack. And then the other Yule Logs started rocking their hairy ogre balls off and I was forced to follow suit.

Jake: I don’t appreciate being labeled an ogre…I’m much too svelte.

I'm sure most folks would be hard put to hate on what the Yule Logs do musically --- you're such a high impact party band! Aside from the obvious influence of the season, what are some of the Yule Logs' musical influences?

Continue reading...

Hip-Hop Rap Up 12:10:10: Kanye, Cee Lo, Cudi, Nicki, Eligh, Damu, Chico Mann, & DJ Inti @ Amoeba Berkeley (Video Version)

Posted by Billyjam, December 10, 2010 08:35am | Post a Comment
DJ Inti breaks down the Amoeba Berkeley Hip-Hop Top Five for the week of 12:10:10

Kanye West

1) Kanye West
My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy
(Roc-A-Fella/Def Jam)
  
2) Cee Lo Green
The Lady Killer (Elektra Records)

3) Kid Cudi Man On The Moon 2: The Legend of Mr Roger (Universal/Motown)

4) Nicki Minaj Pink Friday (Cash Money/Universal)

5) (tie) Eligh Grey Crow (Legendary/Alpha Pup)
   Damu The Fudgemunk Supply For Demand (Redefinition Records)

Thanks to my man DJ Inti at Amoeba Berkeley for nicely breaking down this week's Hip-Hop Top Five chart at the Telegraph Avenue store. This week's list contains many of the same new releases that have also been doing well over the past week or two at both other Amoebas. These include Kanye West, Cee Lo Green, Kid Cudi, Nicki Minaj, and, in a tie for #5, Eligh and Damu The Fudgemunk. Below are corresponding videos for each of these six new albums plus a video for the song "Ya Yo Se" off Chico Mann's Analog Drift.. Meanwhile concert picks for the Bay Area for the week ahead include Del Tha Funky Homosapien at Yoshi's in San Francisco at 8pm J-Boogie + Sake Oneon Wednesday and Thursday (Dec 15 & 16). Tix $25/$30. More info here.

Journey to the Beatles - The Moribund Course of Music-Related Video Games

Posted by Eric Brightwell, December 9, 2010 01:00pm | Post a Comment
With the recent availability of the music by a scouse four piece known as The Beatles [sic] they could now become the biggest Liverpudlian musical export since The Top or maybe even The La's. This followed their release of 2009's video game The Beatles Rock Band. With a sound that was obviously indebted to The Everly Brothers, The Miracles and Buck Owens, no one ever accused the Fab Four of being innovators. Indeed, the concept of a band promoting their music with video games goes back 28 years to a now-forgotten five-piece called Journey, whose brand of radio-and-roller rink-ready pop/rock once brought favorable comparisons to the likes of Night Ranger, John Waite and Mr. Mister.



That first rock band video game was Journey Escape (1982). In it you have to help guide a faceless ginger (see above screen shot) through the night sky, past disembodied Italian heads and lilac-colored jelly beans with legs to the famous scarab ship that was, frankly, my favorite thing about the band. Occasionally, a character that looks like the Kool-Aid Man comes to your aid.
  

I haven't played the game's sequel, Journey (1983) but I was transfixed by the title screen as a kid. 


My stepbrother David had It’s Only Rock ‘n’ Roll (1984) for the Coleco. Although the packaging makes it look like your band is some five man electric jam Three Dog Night brand of sweaty, endurance defying classic rock; in fact, whenever your band takes the stage, you produce a pleasing chiptunes melody. You also can call your band anything you like, up to a certain amount of letters, which is why my band was simply "Blowtorch" instead of "Blowtorch Balls," which was my favored, bizarre and alliterative insult at the time.

Make My Video (1992) allowed the player to play auteur and make videos for INXS and urban acts like Kriss Kross and Marky Mark & the Funky Bunch. Somehow, despite the promising set-up, it failed critically and commercially. Game Informer gave the Marky Mark version a 0 out of 10, the lowest score a game has ever received by the magazine. It has appeared on "several worst video game of all time" lists as well.
Total Distortion (1995), on the other hand, looks pretty kyewel.
The game パラッパラッパー (aka PaRappa the Rapper) (1996) was pretty massive. It's crazy how, post-Eric B & Rakim, east coast rap never surpassed this level. 
ビートマニア (aka Beatmania) (1997) pioneered the performative music video game was and the first in Konami's Benami music game line.. Although it never really caught on outside of Japan, it's pretty obvious that the folks behind Rock Band and Guitar Hero were aware of it.
ギターフリークス (aka GuitarFreaks) (1998) was another Benami music game that probably only didn't catch on outside of Japan because most of the music was J-Pop, something most non-Japanese aren't familiar with, and music composed specifically for the game.
ポップンミュージック(aka Pop’n Music) (1998) was yet another Benami game.
When Spice World (1998) came out, Benami-style games still hadn't crossed the ocean. The New York Times pithily remarked of Spice World, "The music is derivative and shallow. The game didn't have to be."
ドラムマニア (aka DrumMania) (1999) was again, for the most part, not marketed outside of the Japanese market, and amazingly Guitar Hero's John Devecka holds a patent for drum simulation games.
Not surprisingly, it was a team of Japanese developers (Shun Nakamura, Tomohiko Aita, Satoshi Okano and Hiroyuki Watanabe) who had the bright idea of targeting a Benami-style game to foreign markets with Samba de Amigo (1999).
Playstation launched their first sequel to Parappa the Rapper with ウンジャマ・ラミー (aka Um Jammer Lammy) (1999).

Although it wasn't an actual music video game, in 2000 an internet meme surfaced known as All Your Base Belong to Us. It was based on the Engrish translation of 1989's  ゼロウィング (aka Zero Wing).

In 2000, a Kansas City, Missouri computer programmer/DJ Jeffrey Ray Roberts of the gabba band The Laziest Men on Mars recorded "Invasion of the Gabber Robots," which remixed some of Zero Wing's music by Tatsuya Uemura with a voiceover phrase "All your base are belong to us." 
Frequency (2001) was developed by Harmonix, who originally pitched the concept to Microsoft but were told by the then-vice-president of game publishing, Ed Fries, that no music-rhythm game would succeed without a custom hardware controller. As a result, Harmonix went on to develop the well-known Guitar Hero with its custom guitar-shaped controller.

太鼓の達人 (aka Taiko no Tatsujin) (2001) was Namco's entry into the music game arena. Last time I checked, they still had one of these at the Little Tokyo Arcade.
American Idol (2002) was a poorly reviewed game based on an unwatchable show. X-play gave it a 1 out of 5, complaining about the gameplay consisting of pressing buttons in time and not on the player's actual singing.
ギタルマン ( aka Gitaroo Man ) (2002) was released in North America in limited quantities despite a mostly positive reception.
ブラボーミュージック (aka  Mad Maestro!) (2002) was Desert Productions' Romantic music-oriented entry into music games. 
Mambo a Go Go (2002) was going to be released in the US, but never was...
ドンキーコンガ (aka Donkey Konga ) (2003) was Mario's least-favorite simian's similar, conga-playing game for GameCube.
SingStar (2003) came with a special microphone and requires players to sing along with the game to score points, the first such video game to do so. You don't get any extra points for disrobing to James Blunt, however.



If you've learned anything from this blog entry, it's hopefully that Guitar Hero (2005), despite blowing the doors wide open for music RPGs, was really nothing new. As with most of the successful games in its vein, it spawned numerous sequels and you can even play in Amoeba in one of them.

アイドルマスター (aka THE iDOLM@STER ) (2005) was another Japan-only release. Come on, Japan! Didn't you get the memo? People love your weird culture! Why do you think Matthew C. Perry forced you to open your ports in 1854?!
Toy’s March (2005) was developed for kids... not adults. Come on, dude! Little man (below) is drumming circles around you!


***************


Rock Band (2007), just by standing on the shoulders of those standing on the shoulders of giants, helped the franchise steal the thunder from Guitar Hero. The same company, Harmonix, that developed GH was behind Rock Band.

Game on!

Continue reading...

New 12" Releases 12/9 @ Amoeba Hollywood - James Blake, Isolee, Space Dimension Controller, Holger Czukay and More

Posted by Oliver / Matt / Jordan, December 9, 2010 11:20am | Post a Comment


James Blake
LIMIT TO YOUR LOVE 10”
Atlas

His stunning cover of FEIST & CHILLY GONZALES showcases the melancholy soul of JAMES' voice mixed with moments of shuddering bass and a deliberate manipulation of silent spaces. This is truly a stunning piece of modern music. Do not miss out on this! 1-sided.
Listen to "Limit To Your Love" here:






Most Of This Moment
ISOLEE REMIXES
Most Of This Moment

Beautiful deep house 12". Melodious beats and pulsating rhythms mixed with some NY garage-styled female vocals. Catchy but deep and underground, too. Comes with two remixes from ISOLEE (remix and dub). Limited (500x) hand stamped white label 12".






Space Dimension Controller
TEMPORARY THRILLZ EP D12”
R&S

This SPACE DIMENSION CONTROLLER EP contains intergalactic slow jams, deep club excursions, and midtempo space funk, all with trademark soul, depth, and finesse. With 6 tracks total, 4 locked grooves. Repressed and back in stock.
Listen to "Kaleidoscopic Ecstasy" here:





Holger Czukay
DREAM AGAIN (CLEAR) D10”
Claremont 56

Teaming up with JAH WOBBLE and JAKI LIEBEZEIT, HOLGER remixes 4 of his best tracks: "MUSIC IN THE AIR," "SUDETENLAND," "THE EAST IS RED" & "DREAM AGAIN" on this double 10", clear vinyl gatefold hand numbered pressing of 666. Super collectible and absolutely beautiful. Act fast.





Maxxi & Zeus
AMERICAN DREAMER 12”
International Feel

The first track is a widescreen cinemascape inspired by multi-layered head music, perfect for a deep cult-like trip. The flip's "MZ MEDLEY" is a raw & exciting experiment through the days of the late 70s and cut n paste style disco medleys. Support from FRANCOIS K, PRINS THOMAS, DICKY TRISCO, & more!







Lone
EMERALD FANTASY TRACKS DLP
Magic Wire

MAGIC WIRE presents the second release on the label from co-founder LONE. From the massive slab of piano stab-lead Detroit-inspired techno of opening cut "CLOUD 909" to the primitive 808/BLACK DOG inspired house of "MOON BEAM HARP," this covers a broad spectrum of styles.
Listen to "Petrcane Beach" here:




Mark E
ESCAPE 12”
Vibrations

The first release from CHRISTOPHER GALLOWAY & PIERS HARRISON's VIBRATIONS imprint comes from the always-dependable MARK E, who drops 2 killer jams. The title track is a bassline driven banger that also sees a remix by ROOTS UNIT. "MIDNIGHT FIRES" is a more techno influenced cut for early mornings.







Vakula
NEMA 12”
3rd Strike

Coming off his FIRECRACKER EP, VAKULA brings this 5 track EP. The title cut features dreamy vocals, "NERVE" is like a future jazz-funk vibe, "ALL THE SAME" on the flip is a nice percussive groove, and "HOOPA LOOPA" holds soulful loops & soul-jazz touches. "BEAT JA" is a DETROIT influenced cut.





Caribou
VS. DJ KOZE EP 12”
City Slang

Epic 3 track remix EP featuring reworks from one of the albums of the year, all by DJ KOZE. Bringing his unique style that unites funked out glitch with a warm, organic house vibe, we get remixes of "FOUND OUT," "JAMELIA," and "ODESSA."
Listen to Koze's Jamelia Remix here:





Mount Kimbie
BLIND NIGHT ERRAND 12”
Hotflush

The title cut and "BEFORE I MOVE" are both album tracks from "CROOKS & LOVERS," plus a new DAYGLO mix of "WILLIAM," and a new live version of "MAYBES" recorded at legendary Berlin nightclub Berghain.
Listen to "Blind Night Errand" here:





Arp.101
FLUSH 12”
Eglo

ARP.101 returns with another jam packed 12" with 3 diverse productions! The title track has received heavy support from BENJI B and runs with tripped out synth work. "KORG-A-TRON" is a serious head noddin' joint that would fit on the "PRODUCER" series. "AC!D" is a crazy tune DAM-FUNK style. Hot!








Morphosis
WHAT HAVE WE LEARNED 12”
MOS

This limited release brings a couple of remixes of some MORPHOSIS heat. 1st NWAQ turns out a hell of a dub for "DIRTY MATTER" that's a relentless 7.5 minutes of bang. On the flip JUST FOR ONE DAY remixes "ANDROIDS AMONG US" and creates a serious killer using the core elements of the original.





Dan Marshall/SCORN 12"
Joe Syntax/SLINGSHOT 12"
J:Kenzo/STOMP 12”
Topo/BA BA GO GO 12”
DJ Fresh vs Sigma/LASSITUDE #1 12”
DJ Fresh vs Sigma/LASSITUDE #2 12”
Pendulum/WITCHCRAFT (DRUMSTEP RMX) 12”
Visti & Meyland/LEAVE YOUR WORRIES 12”
Yosaku & DJ Day/THE BOTTLE 10”
Seven/SINISTER & ABDUCTION 12”
Man Like Me/LOVESTRUCK REMIXES 12”
Joe Syntax/LEAVING THE WORLD BEHIND 12”
Skinnz/KEEP IT GUTTA 12”
Cymatic/ELECTRIC CHURCH 12”
Hem/ON A MISSION (SHORTSTUFF RMX) 12”
Various/BRUTAL 500 SERIES PART 1 12”
Eveson/NUMBERS 12”
Kjell/DYNAMIC 12”
Cyantific/305 12”
Romanthony/LET ME SHOW YOU LOVE 12”
Yam Who/HI STEPPIN - COME ON & DO ME 12”
Lynx/FOR THE REBELS 12”
Various/DELIRIOUS GROOVES VOL 3 LP
Hybrid/DISAPPEAR HERE 12”
Raphael Gualazzi/REALITY & FANTASY 12”
Digital Mystikz/URBAN ETHICS LP
Francois X/THE STORM CYCLE EP 12”
Ekoplekz/STALAG ZERO 12”
S.A.S./GIVE IT TO YOU EP 12”
Various/PRODUCER 3 PART 1 EP 12”
Mutated Forms/DOUBTS 12”
Various/WE GET BY WITH A LITTLE HELP 12”
House Nerds/NERDS ARE PEOPLE TOO 12”
Armand Van Helden & S Aoki/BRRRAT! 12"
Of Norway/HEATHEN BURIAL EP 12”
Incredible Bongo Band/BREAKDOWN RMXS 12”
Four Hands/HIZOU (LIMITED) 1-SIDED 12”
Nile Delta/CHANNEL 12”
Bbq/MY WAY HOME EP 12”
Marcelus/EP1 12”
Noisia/ALPHA CENTAURI 12”
Floating Points/VACUUM EP 12”
Frank Mitchell Jr/BOOTY LOCK 7”
Cloud/STRINGS 12”
Billy Woost/BILLY WOOST LP
Heels Of Love/SLAVE 12”
Ilija Rudman/AGAINST THE WALL 12”
Various/MANMADE GOLD EDITION DLP
Root Soul/FUSELAGE: UNRELEASED RMXS 12”
Amel Larrieux/TELL ME-G. FITZGERALD 10”
Mario Basanov/UP - NICHOLAS REMIX 12”
Badly Drawn Boy/YOU LIED 1-SIDED 12”
Various/KEEP HOUSE IN YOUR MIND 12”
House of Jezebel/LOVE & HAPPINESS 12”
Radioslave/RADIOSLAVE MEETS SKINT 12"
Small World Disco/EDITS #11 12”
Tiga/LOVE DON'T DANCE HERE ANYMORE 12”
Deep Space Orchestra/TRUST SKYNET EP 12”
Brother's Rise/PACK MENTALITY EP 12”
KBE/NAKED MUSIC CLUB VERSIONS 12”
Dimitri From Tokyo/SAKURA BLUE EDITS 12”
Eddie Leader & Friends/FRONT GROOVE 12”
Insiders/CAIRO 12”
Master H/STABS CALL EP C PROMMER RMX 12”
Digitalism/BLITZ 12”
Goth Trad/TWO FACED 12”
Modular Men/ACID MANEUVERS EP 12”
Roland Casper/JR EXPERIENCE 12”
Most Of This Moment/ISOLEE REMIXES 12”
Danny Byrd/WE CAN HAVE IT ALL REMIX 12”
Phace/MAMMOTH 12”
Phace/CCTV 12”
Hatcha & Lost/WHY SO SERIOUS 12”
Hatcha & Lost/WORKOUT 12”
Andy Ash/OTP PARTY BREAKS #3 12”
Stone Love/STONE SPANADA 7”
Various/NIGHTLIFE VOL. 5 EP #2 DLP
James Duncan/SHADES OF HOUSE 12”
James Blake/CMYK 12”
Lenzman/BITTERSWEET 12”
Miguel Migs/LOVE WE HAD (FEAT PEVEN) 12”
Bad Robot/BLACK WHIP 12”
Hotel Motel/PAYING THE PRICE 12”
Francis Inferno Orchestra/MEET ME... 12”
Ben Verse/DARK STAR 12”
KBE/NAKED MUSIC CLUB VERSIONS 12”

December 8, 2010: The Social Network

Posted by phil blankenship, December 8, 2010 11:26pm | Post a Comment

Sir Arne's Treasure Scored Live by John Darnielle of the Mountain Goats

Posted by The Bay Area Crew, December 8, 2010 03:30pm | Post a Comment

mountain goats sir arne's treasure

The San Francisco Film Society presents Mauritz Stiller's 1919 silent film classic Sir Arne's Treasure with live musical accompaniment by indie rock icon John Darnielle of The Mountain Goats. You won't want to miss Stiller's haunting tale of murder, betrayal, and divine redemption alongside Darnielle's world premiere of the score. Join us at the Castro Theatre on Tuesday, December 14 at 8:00pm. More info here.

Aretha Franklin Diagnosed with Cancer

Posted by Miss Ess, December 8, 2010 01:34pm | Post a Comment

It has been revealed today by Aretha Franklin's family that the fabulous Queen of Soul has cancer. They have not specified what type, but this certainly must be what was behind her recent surgery and canceled tour dates. Hurry back to health, Miss Aretha! 

Here she is back in 1968 performing "I Never Loved a Man (The Way I Love You)":

All About Evil Available on DVD Now

Posted by Amoebite, December 8, 2010 11:01am | Post a Comment
If you have yet to see Joshua Grannell's incredible film All About Evil, you are in luck, because it is now available on DVD!

all about evil

Joshua's alter ego Peaches Christ has a cameo role in this hilarious and smart movie about what happens when a woman is desperate to keep her father's old time theater open...she'll do anything, even kill, to get people to fill those seats! It stars Natasha Lyonne, Thomas Dekker, Mink Stole and Cassandra Peterson (Elvira) and is destined for cult film status!

You can get the DVD here at amoeba.com or come on down to any of our stores!

Remembering December 8th, 1980: Rest in Peace, John Lennon

Posted by Billyjam, December 8, 2010 09:30am | Post a Comment
John Lennon "Give Me Some Truth" (HD version)

The videos above and below are both in honor of one of the true greats of our age, John Lennon, whose beautiful creative life was brought to a premature, screeching halt exactly thirty years ago today (December 8th, 1980) when he was senselessly gunned down outside his home in New York City.

John Lennon holds a special place in the hearts of so many people and those of us who were alive on this date 30 years ago have our own personal memory of that tragic night and of learning the news. For me, I had emigrated a year earlier to America from Ireland and was living in the Upper West Side, a couple of miles from where the murder took place.

Like most people I knew, I too was a big John Lennon (and Beatles) fan. And if you lived in NYC at the time, odds of a Lennon sighting were pretty good. He was always out and about. He and Yoko would sometimes come to the Japanese macrobiotic restaurant I worked at as a waiter at the time (Souen on Broadway near 91st - long gone location). The album Double Fantasy had been released a few months earlier but was still a "new album" by 1980 standards, back when the shelf life of music seemed much longer than these days. It was on my turntable at the time, although I must admit that it was not my favorite Lennon release. Anyway, none of that mattered once the tragic news hit that night, which I learned when one of my room mates came rushing into my room with the unbelievable announcement.

Continue reading...

December 7, 2010: The Town

Posted by phil blankenship, December 7, 2010 10:22pm | Post a Comment

California Fool's Gold -- Exploring Orange, Orange County's Plaza City

Posted by Eric Brightwell, December 7, 2010 06:00pm | Post a Comment
INTRO


This blog entry is about the City of Orange, a town located in North Orange County, California. I was joined on my visit by long-time Orange residents and fans, Alex Graham (of The Internal Tulips) and Song Le Graham, whose contributions greatly contributed to this entry. If you'd like to see more Orange County communities be the subjects of further blog entries, click here and vote. If you'd like to see Los Angeles County communities be the subjects of further blog entries, click here and vote. If you'd like to see Los Angeles neighborhoods be the subjects of further blog entries, click here and vote. 

    


Orange completely surrounds the city of Villa Park and is in turn surrounded by Anaheim, North Tustin, Tustin, Santa Ana and Garden Grove. Orange is noteworthy in California for its concentration of historic buildings built in a variety of styles, including California Bungalow, Craftsman, Craftsman Bungalow, Hip Roof Cottage, Mediterranean Revival, Prairie, Spanish Colonial Revival and Victorian. It contains several distinct residential areas including three Eichler tracts and the neighborhoods of Orange Park Acres, Cerro Villa Heights, El Modena, McPherson, Marlboro, Olive and Old Towne.

Although Orange has few buildings, 21-story City Tower, completed in 1988, was completed in 1988 and is today the fifth tallest building in the county. The next tallest structure is the 16-story 1100 Executive Tower.

Continue reading...

Noise Pop 2011

Posted by The Bay Area Crew, December 7, 2010 04:56pm | Post a Comment


Click here for all the info you need about Noise Pop 2011!

Video: Carte Blanche ft Kid Sister - Do! Do! Do!

Posted by Smiles Davis, December 7, 2010 12:46pm | Post a Comment


Kid Sister
posted a new video yesterday. Enjoy!

Find Carte Blanche ft. Kid Sister: "Do! Do! Do!" - A-Trak, Dirty South Dance 2 (Obey; 2010)
FREE Download

The Friendly Ranger Returns: Early Thin Lizzy Remasters Available at Long Last!

Posted by Kells, December 6, 2010 09:35pm | Post a Comment
Anyone been obsessing as much as I have over those early Thin Lizzy double-disc remasters that were supposed to hit the shelves over a year ago? After what seemed like an eon, Decca has seen to giving the first three Lizzy records a polished shine, reuniting a-sides with b-sides, outtakes, Peel Sessions, live jams, and the like appropriately on each respective extended reissue. Sadly, Thin Lizzy's self-titled debut and their sophomore effort Shades of a Blue Orphanage are not packaged as two CD super sets, as was promised once upon a time, but they pack just as many fever-inducing extras as the stellar Vagabonds of the Western World double-disc bonanza --- the final of the initial three Lizzy albums recorded as the bluesy, folk/rock trio of Eric Bell on guitar, Brian Downey on drums and the legendary Philip Lynott fronting the band on bass, acoustic guitar and vocals. Even if you have most of the rare and "unreleased" content squirreled away in your Lizzy collection already (like I do since I can't stop obsessing over this band because, let's face it, every Lizzy fan is Lizzy's greatest fan), it feels real, real good to have it all spiffed up and compiled together in the sort of slick, comprehensive presentation the music really deserves. The only thing that's missing here is the inclusion of the "lost" Thin Lizzy tracks, like this bongo-rific boho alternate version of "The Friendly Ranger at Clontarf Castle."

"Friendly Ranger at Clontarf Castle" -- an early early version


Do enough digging in the right place at the right time you might come across an "import" copy of those lost tracks, but for now, however, these shiny new reissues are where it's at! For those who need to know, the specs are as follows:

Thin Lizzy (the album, 1971) includes the original track listing and the four tracks comprising the rare New Day EP:

"The Friendly Ranger at Clontarf Castle"
"Honesty Is No Excuse"
"Diddy Levine"
"Ray-Gun"
"Look What the Wind Blew In"
"Éire"
"Return of the Farmer's Son"
"Clifton Grange Hotel"
"Saga of the Ageing Orphan"
"Remembering, Pt. 1"
"Dublin"
"Remembering, Pt. 2 (New Day)"
"Old Moon Madness"
"Things Ain't Workin' Out Down at the Farm"

...plus four "overdubbed and remixed" versions of "Look What The Wind Blew In," "Honesty is No Excuse," "Dublin" and "Things Ain't Working Out Down On The Farm" circa 1977. The kind of deluxe liner notes and bonus images that always accompany "Expanded and Remastered" editions are included properly here, though it should be noted that the exclusion of Lizzy's 1970 debut single "The Farmer" b/w "I Need You" is a downright egregious oversight. Oh well, what can we do but move on to...

Shades of a Blue Orphanage (1972), Lizzy's second studio album, was named by a combination of the members' previous bands: Shades of Blue and Orphanage, though I understand that Lynott used to be in a band called Skid Row (eat your heart out, Sebastian Bach), so, in theory, this record could've been called Shades of a Blue Orphanage on Skid Row. Here again we see the original track listing fluffed and padded with the following bonus tracks:

"Whiskey in the Jar" (Full-length version)
"Black Boys on the Corner"
"Buffalo Gal" (1977 Overdubbed and remixed version)
"Sarah" (1977 Overdubbed and remixed version)
"Brought Down" (1977 Overdubbed and remixed version)
"Suicide" (BBC Radio 1 John Peel Session)
"Black Boys on the Corner" (BBC Radio 1 John Peel Session)
"Saga of the Ageing Orphan" (BBC Radio 1 John Peel Session)
"Whiskey in the Jar" (BBC Radio 1 John Peel Session)

Now, if you're wondering what all this "overdubbed and remixed" business is all about, check out the difference between the original version of "Sarah" as it occurs on the 1972 album...

"Sarah"


...and the 1977 reworked jam:

"Sarah" -- version 2


The two versions really aren't that much different, but if pressed I'd have to say that the latter sounds somehow, I dunno, cocksure? Whereas the former harbors a innocent blooming of gentleness --- it's kind of like the difference between billing yourself as a folk/rock band or a rock/folk band: no matter how gray the area separating them, the difference is about as un-stark as twilight and daybreak. But, you know, no biggie -- whatever lifts your luggage, right? Anyway, let's discuss the bigger deal...

Vagabonds of the Western World (1973) offers perhaps the kookiest cover art of any Thin Lizzy release and is the last slice of original guitarist Eric Bell we get before  the addition of the "twin lead guitar" onslaught shaped by Scott Gorham and Brian Robertson (with a dash of Gary Moore added here 'n' there for sizzle's sake). The 2 CD deluxe edition features the original album plus the three singles and their respective b-sides released around the same time as Vagabonds on disc one with a heap of bonus content crammed onto the secondary disc for the true rockers to absorb; check it out!

Disc One:

"Mama Nature Said"
"The Hero and the Madman"
"Slow Blues"
"The Rocker"
"Vagabonds of the Western World"
"Little Girl in Bloom"
"Gonna Creep Up on You"
"A Song for While I'm Away"
"Randolph's Tango"
"Broken Dreams"
"The Rocker" (Single Version)
"Here I Go Again"
"Cruising in the Lizzymobile"
"Little Darling"
"Sitamoia"
"Slow Blues" (1979 Overdubbed And Remixed Version)
"Randolph's Tango" (Radio Promo Edit)
"Whiskey in the Jar" (Promotional Edited Version)

Disc 2:

Continue reading...

John Cage vs. Simon Cowell in UK X-Factor Showdown for Coveted #1 Slot on Britain's Christmas Week Pop Charts

Posted by Billyjam, December 6, 2010 04:18pm | Post a Comment
John CageSimon Cowell























A piece by the late, great American composer/music theorist John Cage, to be "recorded" today by an extended ensemble that includes Billy Bragg and Pete Doherty, will go head to head against this weekend's winner for the Sunday finale of the phenomenally popular British television talent contest The X-Factor for the much coveted #1 position on the Christmas pop chart. Until last year that top slot on the UK pop charts automatically got taken by the winner of The X-Factor, ever since it began airing in 2004.

However, that all changed last Christmas after disgruntled music fans, who were sick of the overbearing blase pop of the mainstream Simon Cowell-created contest (Cowell is also a judge), banded together via a Facebook campaign to all purchase another single and drive it, through sales, to the top position on the Christmas week pop chart. The song they chose, based on the name of the band and the song title, was the 1992 Rage Against the Machine track "Killing In The Name."

Continuing in the "Rage Against The Machine" theme (The X-Factor being the machine), this year's song is by a one-off band named Cage Against the Machine, who today were scheduled to "record" the song by John Cage -- and not just any old Cage composition, either, but the composition "4' 33."" Even by the avant garde artist's standards this is a challenging track since it is a completely silent piece that runs for 4 minutes and 33 Cage Against The Machineseconds.

Continue reading...

My Interview with Hans Zimmer, Film Composer for Inception (and Many Others)

Posted by Charles Reece, December 6, 2010 03:54pm | Post a Comment

Dig them socks. I discussed Inception here.

It's a School Night with Grouplove, The 88, & Ryan of Local Natives

Posted by Smiles Davis, December 6, 2010 01:20pm | Post a Comment
School Night was just voted "# 1 Party in America" by Paste Magazine. Come see what all the fuse is about tonight at Bardot in Hollywood. As always, it's presented by MFG Production, LA Weekly's 2009 pick for best promoter. See ya on the dancefloor!

Bardot
1737 Vine Street
RSVP @ itsaschoolnight.com

Cruise to Mexico: Part 7

Posted by Job O Brother, December 6, 2010 11:37am | Post a Comment


Day 5 (Part 2)

Thursday. September 16, 2010

PUERTO VALLARTA



As the boyfriend, his father, Fred, the sweltering heat and I walked home along the quaint, plank-board sidewalks along the coast of Puerto Vallarta, I was all the time keeping a look-out for a keen thank you gift for Smithy, who’s house-sitting for us had caused her such difficulty after the devious plotting of the demon spawn we call “our kitties.”

You’d think that a tourist trap like Puerto Vallarta would be ideal shopping, but I couldn’t imagine Smithy exactly swooning over a miniature beaded palm tree statue or a Hard Rock Café tank-top.

Then, at last, I saw just the sort of boutique that catered to the refined taste of my dear,lady friend: a tequila specialty shop. Hypnotized by the variety of tans, camels, and caramel colors that shone through the many-angled bottles, I floated in and got real thirsty. The vendor – who’s name I never got, so I’ll call Graggenhauserfrauschembaur – practically materialized from out of my shadow, eager to exchange some of his wares for the far-less delicious bills I kept in my wallet.

“This,” I thought to myself, “Is gonna be a great relationship.”

It was. At Graggenhauserfrauschembaur’s insistence we sat at a tiny portable bar and were lined up shots after shots of tequila tasters. It was like being a college freshman girl at her first date rape. Graggenhauserfrauschembaur’s salesmanship was bar-none; how brilliant to get your customers drunk! And the tequila was, truly, lekker. My personal favorites were a coconut-crème tequila and a tamarind liqueur that made me wanna be an alcoholic again for the first time. I purchased some booze for Smithy, and some for myself. I bid Graggenhauserfrauschembaur a bittersweet farewell, and he scolded the boyfriend and I for coming from Los Angeles and not being able to speak Spanish.

Continue reading...

Tru Thoughts' New Signing: Wildcookie are Freddie Cruger aka Red Astaire & Anthony Mills

Posted by Smiles Davis, December 5, 2010 10:45pm | Post a Comment
My grandfather owned a record store for some 20 years in Grand Rapids, Michigan. Calling him a serious vinyl collector would be an understatement. Around the house, however, music was never played. All the vinyl he ever owned remained in its original packaging until it was either sold, given away or stored in the “vault” in his basement where it remains till this day. Fortunately, he encouraged us to enjoy music of all types, never was he discriminatory.

I had a very strict curfew living with my grandparents, but was allowed a  grace period whenever attending a concert. The first show I went to without my parents was a D’angelo concert. It was the Voo Doo tour with Lucy Pearl. The opening act was Anthony Hamilton, an unknown at the time. He was good, damn good, as was the rest of the touring ensemble. That dreamy night is memorable for so many reasons. For starters, it was me celebrating my independence, but also D’angelo means so much to my generation. He was to my generation what Sade was to the preceding generation.

I ran across this G.A.M.M. comp a few years ago with a few heaters lurking. The stand out track was this unbelievably dope remix of D’angelo’s "Left & Right" from the prolific Voo Doo album. I remember playing the song constantly. The vibes over D'angelo's seductive vocals give the song legs and take it to another level, better than the original. The title of the track was different from its original counterpart, I assume for good reason. “Follow Me,” as the song was called, is not just a remix but an entirely new song with its own identity because of its greatness. The producer/DJ is Red Astaire, also known as Freddie Cruger. He’s had me hook, line and sinker ever since. 

Naturally, I was excited to hear Tru Thoughts has a brand new signing: Wildcookie are Freddie Cruger aka Red Astaire & Anthony Mills. Their upcoming 'Heroine' single is butter, R&B with a pulse sown from the same cloth as Bilal and Little Brother. The laid back, smooth production is quite exquisite, but it's the lyrical content that enhances the emotional reach of the song. "Heroin made my favorite jazz," Anthony bellows out speaking of the uncanny parallels between heroin addiction and the utter genius that was the Jazz age.

Since his last release on Tru Thoughts in 2006, Freddie Cruger has been busy traveling the world as a DJ and releasing music on his own label, Homegrown Records. One of these releases was the debut, and now extremely rare, Wildcookie 12". The Drugs EP featured "Heroine" and received support from Gilles Peterson on BBC Radio 1. Wildcookie is not a one man band, though; Freddie's ultra-crisp production skills and sophisticated synth-line melodies are backed with the pitch perfect vocals of Anthony Mills.

Anthony Mills is no stranger to the world of music. In 12 short years he has toured extensively with Harry Belafonte's All-Star Band, recorded with Krs-One, Amy Winehouse, Leela James, Maxi Priest, Snow, Sizzla, Dead Prez, Doc (Esthero & Res), Sly Dunbar, Chinna Smith and Grace Bumbry. Mills has written over 1000 songs in this time and recorded well over 100 studio and live albums, providing lead vocals for two other duos -- Super Viral Brothers (Pope/Universal) and XXLARGEMILLS.

In the last five years Mills has lived in Stockholm, graciously penetrating Sweden's music and art scene, including hooking up with Freddie Cruger, a native of the Swedish capital. Freddie remembers, "I met Anthony at this live venue called Lydmar in 2006 when he was in Stockholm performing as a background singer for Leela James. I got introduced to him as the man to work with." Then, in 2009 they started making tracks. "The way we get the music done is basically that we get in to the 'zone;' I start playing beats and Anthony starts writing. He is amazing at finding melodies on the spot and also quick with lyrics, so sometimes we lay down 3 or 4 tracks a day. The songs on the album were mostly done on the first take and that's how we like to work. Anthony is a kind of person that I feel I can play any type of styles to 'cause I never know what he is going to do."

The debut album Cookie Dough is out on February 21st. Till then, enjoy this video of their new single "Heroine." Looking forward to it, fellas.



Till next time, chew the corners off.

December 5, 2010: Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 1

Posted by phil blankenship, December 5, 2010 07:46pm | Post a Comment

The Anthology of Rap Interview with Book Co-Editor Adam Bradley

Posted by Billyjam, December 5, 2010 11:04am | Post a Comment
The Anthology of Rap
The Anthology of Rap is the recently published, exhaustive 880 page book from Yale University Press that compiles the lyrics to about 300 rap songs of all different types and styles, spanning 30 plus years in the music's history. Edited by Adam Bradley and Andrew DuBois, the book, which has afterwords by both Chuck D and Common, also includes some artist bio information along with the song lyrics.

The Anthology of Rap is divided into timeline sections and then into artists sub-sections. For example, "Part I 1978-1984 The Old School" includes such artists as Afrika Bambaataa, Kurtis Blow, Cold Crush Brothers, Eddie Cheba, DJ Hollywood, Lady B, Spoonie G, and Sequence (one of the earliest recorded female rap crews -- lyrics to their hit "Funk You Up" plus their songs "And You Know That" & "Simon Says" are all included here).

"Part 2, 1985-1992 The Golden Age" features lyrics from artists like the Beastie Boys, De La Soul, Eric B & Rakim, Gang Starr, and Ultramagnetic MCs, while "Part 3, 1993-1999 Rap Goes Mainstream," includes the likes of Arrested Development, Foxy Brown, E40, Goodie Mob, Lauren Hill, Common, Jay Z, KRS-One, and Lil Kim. The fourth part, "2000 to 2010  New Millenium Rap," includes such artists as Aesop Rock, Atmosphere, Blackalicious, Brother Ali, DOOM, Immortal Technique, Mos Def, T.I., Kanye West, and Young Jeezy. There is also an additional final segment titled "Lyrics For Further Study" that includes lyrics from a broad swath of artists from all over the rap spectrum and timeline, including contemporary popular rap star Drake, golden era artists Black Sheep and Bay Area homo-hop crew Deep Dickollective.

Continue reading...

December 2, 2010: The Nutcracker in 3D

Posted by phil blankenship, December 4, 2010 07:38pm | Post a Comment

California Fool's Gold -- Exploring Mar Vista

Posted by Eric Brightwell, December 4, 2010 07:00pm | Post a Comment



Pendersleigh & Sons' Official Map of the Westside


INTRODUCTION


Mar Vista is a westside neighborhood surrounded by Santa Monica, Sawtelle, Rancho Park, Palms, Culver City, Westside Village and Venice. To vote for other Los Angeles neighborhoods to be covered on the blog, vote here. To vote for Los Angeles County communities, vote here. To vote for Orange County communities, vote here.

CHARACTER AND DISTRICTS

  
Pendersleigh & Sons' Official Map of Mar Vista

        

Continue reading...

Movie of the Decade? The Beaver Starring Mel Gibson and Jodie Foster

Posted by Charles Reece, December 4, 2010 05:56pm | Post a Comment

No, this isn't some viral joke; 19 million was spent on it. I'm thinking there are two explanations for featuring Mel talking to a beaver on his hand: (1) Foster's a scientologist, because anything this wrong has to have a scientologist behind it, or (2) any support she gave him during his recent troubles was a ploy to lead him into this trap.

The Art of the LP Cover- Focus on the EV 664

Posted by Mr. Chadwick, December 4, 2010 02:45pm | Post a Comment
This gallery is my early Christmas present! I've been working on gathering the images for years and I've finally got enough to post. The Electro Voice model 664 was designed in the late 50's as a sturdy and reliable public address system microphone and found widespread use amongst the amateur radio set as well. Although somewhat useful in certain studio applications, it's mostly known as a club mic due to its ultra reliable pick-up pattern and relatively low feedback rate. Sometime referred to as "the showerhead mic," I've seen them in gold, satin & chrome finishes, with chrome being the most common. The 664 is as iconic as Shure's 55SH "Elvis mic" or the classic RCA ribbon mic models 44 & 77, albeit connoting more of a Sears & Roebuck vibe than any of those mics.

Come to Amoeba Berkeley's Amoebapalooza This Sunday

Posted by The Bay Area Crew, December 3, 2010 07:22pm | Post a Comment
amoebapalooza berkeley 2010

Hip-Hop Rap Up 12:03:10: Nicki Minaj vs Lil Kim, Rick Flare (RIP), Gurp City South's Foul Mouth Jerk, Hieros + Much More

Posted by Billyjam, December 3, 2010 07:15pm | Post a Comment
Amoeba Music Hollywood Weekly Hip-Hop Top Five Chart: 12:03:10

Nicki Minaj
1) Kanye West
My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy
(Roc-A-Fella/Def Jam)

2) Nicki Minaj Pink Friday (Cash Money/Universal)
     
3) Cee Lo Green
The Lady Killer (Elektra Records)

4) Kid Cudi Man On The Moon 2: The Legend of Mr Roger (Universal/Motown)

5) Lloyd Banks H.F.M.2 (G-Unit Records))

Things were hectic at Amoeba Music last Friday, Black Friday, which was also a sort of mini Record Store Day with exclusive one day only releases like the Cee Lo Green green vinyl pressing of his current hit single "F**k You." The album that the song comes from, The Lady Killer, was also selling briskly in CD format, as were such other releases as the new full-lengths from Kanye West (My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy), Kid Cudi (Man On The Moon 2: The Legend of Mr Roger), and G-Unit artist Lloyd Banks (H.F.M.2). Also doing well at Amoeba and elsewhere is the much anticipated debut from Nicki Minaj, who released her own album, Pink Friday, last week, and has also been highly visible of late elsewhere, making cameos on numerous other artists' releases. But, in an ongoing battle of words, Nicki has been getting some grief from fellow female rapper Lil Kim, who released the diss track "Black Friday" last Friday (a direct negative reference to Minaj's album title Pink Friday) in which she raps at the new kid on the rap block: “It will be a murder scene. Turning Pink Friday to Friday the 13th. Aiight, you Lil Kim clone clown. All this buffoonery. The shit stops now...” 

Continue reading...

NITESHIFT Presents: Kenny Dope at EL Cid

Posted by Smiles Davis, December 3, 2010 12:53pm | Post a Comment


Happy Friday! Glad to see the week come to an end, more or less because there are so many good tings a brewin' 'round LA tonight. If you didn't get the memo, Aloe Blacc is live tonite at The Echo. If you're looking for a night out on the town, you've come to the right place, my friend, just a few cheap date options for all you last minute scrambles. 

NITESHIFT Presents: Robbi's Birthday Smash! featuring Kenny Dope

KENNY DOPE
(Master At Work, Nuyorican Soul, Kay-Dee Records - NY)

JUAN HOERNI
(Soul Electric, Cha Cha Project, niteshift - SF/LA)

JOSEPH MUNGUIA
(Lucid Sundays, niteshift - LA)






El Cid 4212 W. Sunset Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA

9:30pm - 2:30am | 21+ | $10 be4 10:30 & $15 After

RSVP for $10 list info.universalrhythm@gmail.com

Gylne Tider - Let It Be

Posted by Amoebite, December 3, 2010 12:51pm | Post a Comment
This blew my mind today. It's almost like a sequel to "Liberian Girl." Seriously. I was waiting for Michael to reveal himself at the end.

Xu DaRocha, Andre Miripolsky and Timothee de Price Exhibit at Gallery Lorenzo

Posted by Eric Brightwell, December 3, 2010 12:09pm | Post a Comment
If you're in or around Los Angeles tonight, you should definitely check out the opening of the Gallery Lorenzo in Melrose. Eric's Blog interviewee (link to interview) and my favorite LA artist, Xu DaRocha, is exhibiting her five-painting Fold series along with works by Andre Miripolsky and Timothee de Price. There will also be live music and it should be a great time!


Become a fan of Eric's Blog on Facebook!

This Week At The New Beverly: Jean-Luc Godard, Michael Mann, Alan Ormsby, David Carradine, Woody Allen & More!

Posted by phil blankenship, December 3, 2010 09:06am | Post a Comment
This Week At The New Beverly

Our full upcoming schedule is available online:
www.newbevcinema.com/calendar.cfm



Friday & Saturday, December 3 & 4

Celebrating Godard's 80th Birthday!

BREATHLESS  (1959; Jean-Luc Godard) The word "masterpiece" has been tossed around so often in this age of movie hype and hyperbole that it has all but lost its meaning. But the word "landmark," while perhaps not implying as much about the work, is much less frequently heard. Why? Because it cannot with any seriousness be bestowed upon a work of art absent the passage of time. In a culture of instant gratification that seeks to package movies as consumer product, where the formats in which a movie is available are often more important than the movie itself, a word or phrase requiring patience is a much less attractive one. But there is little doubt that for a generation of critics and filmgoers Breathless was a turning point, the unveiling of a new directorial sensibility where the iconography and attitudes of old Hollywood met the cresting soon-to-be-dubbed French New Wave. Breathless brought with it a whole new attitude about contemporary society and film architecture that could be folded into the most familiar of genre tropes with bracing, shocking results that continue to resonate within the grammar of films made 50 years after its initial release. (One need only imagine Breathless, in which Jean-Paul Belmondo co-opts the image and insolence of Humphrey Bogart on a crime spree with the lovely and reticent Jean Seberg, on a double feature with last week's Bonnie and Clyde to get a sense of how Godard's movie created waves that are still rocking the boat.) This print is the beautifully restored version on view in theaters this past summer, struck to celebrate the 50th anniversary of a movie that, alongside subsequent complacency-shattering films like Psycho, Bonnie and Clyde and The Wild Bunch, demarcates the emergence of a singular vision signaling the end of the Production Code and the breaking down of walls between "high" and "low" culture. Few films made after, say, 1962 could be said to have not at least registered the presence of Breathless along the timeline of film history. That it is such an integral part of the D.N.A. of most of those films, consciously or subconsciously, only speaks to its status as a true cinema landmark.

TONIGHT! 89.9 KCRW Presents Aloe Blacc Release Party @ Echoplex

Posted by Smiles Davis, December 3, 2010 02:48am | Post a Comment

Ok, LA! Hot on the heels of a sold-out European Tour and #1 album in France, Germany & Belgium, Aloe Blacc wraps up his North American Tour in his hometown alongside
Maya Jupiter, Garth Trinidad, The Do-Over’s Haycock & Strong + Special Surprise Guests! This will be one of your only chances to see Aloe Blacc in LA, as he departs on a worldwide tour until Summer 2011, so advance tickets are highly recommended, especially with sold-out shows in SF, Seattle, Portland, NYC, Chicago, Toronto & Montreal. So, ditch the 'it's too cold to go out' excuse and saddle up, partner. See ya at the show, folks!


(presale tix: http://tinyurl.com/379zthx)


Aloe Blacc - Femme Fatale from BOUL2BEAT on Vimeo.

Buy Even More Amoeba Stuff Online

Posted by Amoebite, December 2, 2010 04:31pm | Post a Comment
Love Amoeba but live in Helsinki? 
amoeba

Our own Amoeba site's capacity for you, gentle reader, to purchase the vinyl/cds/blu-rays/books/swag/etc of your dreams has just increased about 3,000 fold, and will increase more and more with each passing hour! We are pleased to introduce to you a new section on our website where you can buy both new and used product, and keep in mind we are adding more every day!

You can now search by genre, or narrow your choices to Buyer's picks, Music We Like and more! There's even a Gift Picks option -- something that should be of service to you this holiday season!

Please check it out when you have a chance right here. We think you'll love all the new, mind-bendingly infinite possibilities for your musical pleasure!

Howlin Rain Acoustic Set at Rock Poster Art Opening Thursday in SF

Posted by The Bay Area Crew, December 1, 2010 01:05pm | Post a Comment
archaic revival

The artists Alan Forbes, Stacie Willoughby and David D'Andrea have given us some of the most intricate, epic poster art for equally intricate, epic and, of course, full-on rock shows! Now they will be celebrated in a show called Archaic Revival at the Space Gallery here in SF this Thursday night. Check out the artists' work, plus DJs and also a special acoustic show by Amoeba faves Howlin Rain! More info here.

david d'andrea
poster by David D'Andrea

stacie
poster by Stacie Willoughby

alan forbes
poster by Alan Forbes

This Charming Brotha: Theophilus London "Flying Overseas" Feat Solange Knowles

Posted by Smiles Davis, December 1, 2010 10:18am | Post a Comment


One of the coolest videos I've seen in a while. Love Theophilus London, and the beautiful black Miss Jodie is pretty dynamite too! Keep it tite, kiddies.

Sebadoh and Quasi Announce Tour

Posted by Miss Ess, December 1, 2010 10:05am | Post a Comment


Indie perennials Sebadoh and Quasi have announced that they will be touring together this February and they are kicking it off in San Francisco! Dates follow:

February 2011
08 -- San Francisco, CA @ Great American Music Hall
10 -- Portland, OR @ Wonder Ballroom
11 -- Vancouver, BC @ Rickshaw Theater
12 -- Seattle, WA @ Neumo's
14 -- Salt Lake City, UT @ Urban Lounge
15 -- Denver, CO @ Larimer Lounge
16 -- Kansas City, MO @ Record Bar
17 -- Norman, OK @ Opolis
18 -- Dallas, TX @ Granada Theater
19 -- Austin, TX @ Emo's
21 -- Tucson, AZ @ Hotel Congress
22 -- Tempe, AZ @ Rhythm Room
23 -- San Diego, CA @ The Casbah
24 -- Los Angeles, CA @ Troubadour
25 -- Los Angeles, CA @ Echoplex