Wednesday, January 30, 2008

No one's gay for Moleman :(

In the song "Cure For Pain", Morphine's frontman Mark Sandman soulfully intones that when they find a cure for pain, that's the day he'll throw his drugs away. Seeing as he is now dead, this news comes a little late to help him down his road of recovery, but it's fascinating news nonetheless.

" As vulnerable as naked mole rats seem, researchers now find the hairless, bucktoothed rodents are invulnerable to the pain of acid and the sting of chili peppers."

The creature, pictured to the left, may hold the key to allowing we humans to finally realize our dreams of sticking our fists directly into open fires to toast marshmallows for our smores, chewing shards of broken glass, and fearlessly hammering in nails.

This new discovery also provides a boost for the theory of intelligent design, due to the fact that so benevolent is our God, that He, in His tender mercy, ensured that this ugly, ugly creature would never feel any pain resulting from the stinging insults the other animals direct towards him. Can I get an "Amen"?

Listening to: Of Montreal - We Were Born the Mutants Again with Leafling
via FoxyTunes

Friday, January 25, 2008

"Stimulus Package" sounds like English Pornography - FRE

Sort of like one of those ones they talked about in Family Guy (not dirty, but also probably NSFW).

Let's get down in dirty with perhaps the only industry more dehumanizing than the porn business: the music business.

1. Foo Fighters - The Pretender.

Surprisingly complex intertwining rhythms convinced me to spend a buck on the download.

2. Radiohead - Pyramid Song.

This is right up there in my top ten of all-time. Reminds me of the Tibetan Book of the Dead.

3. PJ Harvey - Victory.

After listening to White Chalk for the past few weeks, this song seemed to get some of its' punch.

4. Bjork - It's Oh So Quiet.

For years, I thought that this song just begged to be ice skated to competitively. Then, in the last Olympics, it happened. Oh, the vindication!

5. Seven Year Bitch - Gato Negro.

Grungy, girly goodness.

6. Veruca Salt - Venus Man Trap.

Damn, the ladies are representing today. I think VS is way underrated.

7. Smashing Pumpkins - Mayonaise.

My absolute favorite condiment-titled song eveh...even better than Mean Mr. Mustard!

8. Nirvana - I Hate Myself and I Want To Die.

My second favorite suicide-titled song eveh...after SK's Jumpers.

9. The Cardigans - Happy Meal.

I have a soft spot for the Swedes. Except for ABBA. I mean, I do have some standards.

10. Teddybears - Punk Rocker.


11. Gogol Bordello - Start Wearing Purple.

What a wonder climax to a titillating Friday stuffed with aural stimulation!

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Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Something's really been bugging me for the past couple of

years. If you were to imagine that the text over here was

the red and white stripes, and the picture over there was

the blue field of stars, then this would be the proper way to

display the flag. I've had it up to here [points to top of pointy

head]. I know that the rationale is that the flag should look

like it's always moving forward, but anyone who knows

anything about military strategy can tell you what a ridiculous plan that would be...


Friday, January 18, 2008

Friday Random 1011

Don't worry dear, timid reader. I do not plan on listing one thousand eleven songs. Truth be told, I only have 922 songs on the old bobPod. "Why so few?" you ask. Because SSB don't gum up his machines with crap, that's why.

No, 1011 is the binary equivalent of 11. It has been said that there are 10 kinds of people in the world: those who understand binary and those who don't. If you think that is funny, you are such a nerd...and I love you for that.

Let's get to the FRE:

1. Tori Amos - Twinkle.

They mention her in Flight of the Conchords, so you know she's cool.

2. Radiohead - No Surprises.

Oh yeah, that's the mellow stuff. I can feel the tension melting away.

3. Schtum - Skydiver.

This song starts off like so many millions of other songs, then gets exponentially awesome as the seconds go by.

4. Sleater-Kinney - It's Enough.

Oh, that's where you're wrong, ladies. I cannot get enough of this song...or the whole album, actually. Dig Me Out is my 2nd favorite S-K album, right after The Woods.

5. PJ Harvey - Dear Darkness.

Not my favorite song on White Chalk, but a very well constructed and produced song.

6. Meat Beat Manifesto - Circles.

I don't know how he did it, but there it is: mellow dance electronica.

7. Hole - Doll Parts.

Oh, I could go on for hours about Courtney Love. About how much I hate her, but still think this is a really well written album so that only makes me hate her more. But I shan't get into all that. I'll just sit here and think about the scene in Juno where Ellen Page and Jason Bateman sing this song.

8. Gorillaz - 19/2000.

Get the cool shoeshine!

9. Soundgarden - Show Me.

I would so much rather have Soundgarden and Rage Against the Machine than Audioslave.

10. Beastie Boys feat. Biz Markie - Benny and the Jets.

If there is a more awesome dude than Biz Markie, I haven't heard him.

11. Sonic Youth - Bull In The Heather.

It isn't just noise, Juno.

And no FRE could be said to be rockin' without a kick-ass binary solo:


Listening to: Jarvis Cocker - Don't Let Him Waste Your Time
via FoxyTunes

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Monday, January 14, 2008

Noon whistles and rotary phones

Every weekday, at noon, the aptly named noon whistle goes off downtown. It's actually more like an air raid siren, but everyone calls it a whistle. This is a common happening all across Wisconsin. From what I've been told, it serves the purpose of letting the farmers out in the fields know that it was time to head back to the house to eat lunch.

I spend most of my youth growing up in cities and affluent suburbs, an so had never heard the noon whistle before I arrived in Wisconsin. I am now in love with the sound.

It is a common practice in Zen Buddhism to take advantage of everyday sounds such this to take a moment to center yourself, and I find it really is quite least as calming as an air raid siren can be (our sounds like the first one in the link; try to imagine the second one isn't going off if you can). Whenever I hear it, wherever I am, I stop what I'm doing, take in a deep breath as the siren slowly builds in intensity, then exhale as it slowly winds down into silence. Most relaxing!

On the subject of wonderful sounds: I sometimes miss the rotary phone. I love to hear the rhythmic click, whirrrr, click, whirr, click, whirrr, click, whirrrrrrrrrr (that was a zero) in an old movie or TV show. Good directors use that sound to add to the atmosphere, and it is so better than the grating beeps and boops of touch-tones.

I hate those damn boops.

Listening to: Matisyahu - King Without A Crown (Live Version)
via FoxyTunes


Friday, January 11, 2008


As a small gesture to make up for my extended absence, I will from now on, at no additional cost to you, the customer, provide one more song each Friday. Out of the goodness of my own heart, it is.

OK, actually, I just much prefer the abbreviation FRE. I hate FRT! Looks like fart. Enough of that unpleasantness...this is about the music. And the children too, but mostly the music.

1. Pixies - River Euphrates.

I love the Pixies, and I really like the song, but one thing bugs me about it: the Gaza Strip is nowhere near the Euphrates River. Check it out.

2. Beck - Sleeping Bag.

My favorite Scientologist! Speaking of, I just heard last night that Will Smith is a Scientologist. That, I cannot get jiggy with...
I just saw I Am Legend last night. It was OK, I guess. There were several interesting plot lines that could have been developed, but they just couldn't seem to pick one and go with it. I'm sure it was better than the movie that it was remade from: Omega Man. Was Charlton Heston a big Bob Marley fan? Anywho, this is supposed to be about music, which I suppose, in a round about was, it kind of is, since I threw in the bit about Bob Marley. Ok, now I'm officially rambling...

3. Nirvana -Dumb.

From what I hear, the lyrics to this song are inscribed on Kurt Cobain's gravestone. I'm guessing it's probably the only headstone that mentions sniffing this country, anyway.

4. Pavement - Cut Your Hair.
Hands down, the best song on the soundtrack to A Very Brady Sequel.

5. Violent Femmes - Kiss Off.

Oh Lordy, how we used to drink and sing along to this one. It's sort of like Sesame Street with swears.

6. Radiohead - Videotape.

If memory serves, I'm supposed to do a review of this album. I'll hold off on commenting on this song until then, which works out great, because now I don't have to least for the time being.

7. Limblifter - Cordova.

Before there was the New Pornographers, there was Limblifter. I got this CD for a buck because I am so lucky and Jesus loves me.

8. PJ Harvey - Oh My Lover.

This version is from the Peel Sessions CD. She fits all the emotion of a years long bad relationship into just under 4 minutes. She's talented like that.

9. The Breeders - Do You Love Me Now, Jr.

It's Kim Deal teaming up with J Mascis of Dinosaur, Jr., making a great song even better.

10. Morphine - Honey White.

I was forced to watch the extremely mediocre movie Nothing To Lose over New Year's Weekend. I was there with my extended family, who seemed to love it, so I couldn't just walk out on it, could I? Anyway, I was surprised to hear several Morphine songs peppered throughout the did they get mixed up into this train wreck masquerading as entertainment?

11. Peter Bjorn and John - Young Folks.

I recently downloaded this entire album, my first ever complete album download. How exciting!
Like my BFFs BFF say, you can't whistle without laughing and laughing's good for you.

Now playing: Guster - Satellite
via FoxyTunes


Monday, January 07, 2008

Don't call it a comeback...

Wow. What a trying month away from the blogosphere. Well, not really so much trying as it was busy. Actually, sort of busy and sort of not really feeling inspired to write much of anything.

But, mark my words, I shan't leave you all again for such a long period of time. That is my guarantee. Well, not so much a guarantee as a promise. Hmmm..."promise" is such a strong word - how about I call it my goal. No, not really an actual goal, more of a "I'm going to try until I give up" kind of deal. What's the phrase I'm looking for?

Ah, yes. New Year's Resolution! I resolve to keep on writing and posting and everything until I decide to throw whatever readership I haven't already pissed away onto the heap of discarded exercise equipment and A.A. pamphlets.

Speaking of promises unfulfilled, I believe I owe everyone some album reviews. Let's start with PJ Harvey's White Chalk.

This album was released in the States back in early October, I believe, and I didn't actually hear anything off of it until mid-October, on my way back from a pumpkin carving party. As I listened intently, I knew one thing for sure: I really had to up my game if I wanted to win the pumpkin carving contest next year. Man, I really mailed it in this year. Anyway, back to Peej.

When I first pushed play on my CD player, I was greeted by these weird, ethereal Beach Boys-esque piano chords. Had I not read up on this album before I played it, this might have come as quite a shock. There is no wailing or shrieking on this album, and piano. rather than guitar, is the instrument of choice. However, I did read up, so I guess the joke is on her.

I'm not going to do a song by song breakdown like I usually do. What I am going to do is just let you know that the more you know about PJ, the more you can appreciate this album. Of course, having just started playing piano a year or two ago, she is no virtuoso. At times, her playing reminds me of the times I'd go to my son's piano recitals and listen to child upon child struggle and fumble through pieces, nearly losing it but somehow pulling through with a recognizable, even gutsy, performance.

I admire Ms. Harvey's ambition and willingness to experiment and explore, and I think that these traits come through in many of her songs. She's really pulled together an honest-to-goodness album here, an increasingly rare feat in these days dominated by single-song downloads and you kids with your long hair and your salads with arugula in them. Arugula! In my day salads had iceberg lettuce, one mealy tomato slice, and, if you were lucky, maybe some vinegar for dressing. Arugula!

Anyway, I recommend this album for it's inventiveness, bravery, and for the fact that PJ is bringing back Victorian chic. Check it out:

Now playing: PJ Harvey - White Chalk
via FoxyTunes

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