Tag Archives: entertainment

Jon Stewart, Jim Cramer and the rampaging cowards of journalism

First, just in case you haven’t seen it, please review the video (in three parts).

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Open thread: S&R’s all-time Oscars

As I watched the Oscars last night – or perhaps “endured” is a better word, because Huge Ackman prancing around with his nipples all stiff over the return of The Musical! (come on, just try to say it without Jazz Hands) is more than I can take without a cabinetful of medication – I noted that again Meryl Streep got nominated. (And by the way, now I hear that Beyonce might play Ginger in a Gilligan’s Island movie, which means you won’t even be able escape her ubiquitosity by getting stranded on a goddamned deserted island.)

Back to Meryl, though. Read more

TunesDay: The best CDs of 2008, pt. 2 – the Platinum LPs

Our Best CDs of 2008 continues today with a review of the super-premium Platinum Award winners for Excellence in rocking and rolling. As with last week’s Gold Awards, these are in alphabetical order. Band Web sites link to the band name, and if the CD is available via eMusic, that links to the CD title. (Mike Smith of Fiction 8, in last week’s comments, recommended that you buy from the band’s Web site or Amazon, if possible, because the artists get a better cut of the proceeds that way. Duly noted.)

Speaking of Fiction 8, let’s get this out of the way first

Fiction 8Project Phoenix
I have a rule – I never include in my official ratings CDs that I had something to do with, no matter how great I think they are. And since I co-wrote “Hegemony,” the track that closes this disc, that means that Fiction 8 is officially disqualified. This doesn’t mean I can’t tell you what I think I’d think about the record if I weren’t laboring with a conflict of interest, though. Read more

The lamest show in the history of television

I had never heard of it before this morning, but there’s apparently a mental condition known as the “Truman Show Delusion.” People afflicted with this malady believe that they’re living in a reality show about their lives.

Two doctor/brothers, Joel and Ian Gold, have identified symptoms of a mental illness unique to our times: the Truman Show delusion, named for the 1998 movie that starred Jim Carrey as a suburbanite whose movements were filmed 24/7 and broadcast to the world. The two say a handful of individuals are convinced they are stars of an imaginary reality show. Read more

TunesDay: The Lost Patrol’s epic retro-futurism

Here’s how the blurb at CD Baby puts it:

Cinematic ethereal, spaghetti western flavored retro-futuristic music with powerful female vocals. // A sweeping, cinematic, wide-screen journey that combines ethereal sound scapes with surf-tinged guitar. Perfect for those late night rides across the desert with the top down.

Uniquely original retro-futurism.

Yeah, that’s fair. But there’s a lot more to say about The Lost Patrol and their new CD, Midnight Matinee, which has quickly vaulted onto my list of likely 2008 platinum awards. Read more

From Christmas to August: an S&R exclusive on the JonBenet Ramsey case and what it says about America

Few events in recent memory have inflamed the American imagination quite like the murder of JonBenet Ramsey. More to the point, it’s hard to recall a case where passion and profound ignorance of the facts came together in such an explosive mass media cocktail. Ramsey’s death remains unsolved, but how many dollars has it generated for the nation’s “press”?

When push comes to shove, we still don’t know as much about the case and the people involved in it as we think we do, but what we do know is this: JonBenet Ramsey’s murder and the incoherent frenzy it sparked tell us a great deal about America as a culture. Read more

The S&R Interview with Lee Camp, part 2: “Thank God for Jon Stewart”

In part two of the S&R Interview, comedian Lee Camp talks with me about the relationship between politics and comedy and has high praise for those who, like Jon Stewart and Chris Rock, are able to infuse their work with important insights about our society.

“Thank god for The Daily Show,” he says. “I wish there was a network that 24 hours [a day] played Daily Show-esque clips of ‘Bush said this and a month ago he said this and it’s completely the opposite. McCain said this and it conflicts with this‘.”

Camp also offers his personal experience on how the networks and media corporations use their money and the promise of wider exposure to co-opt and undercut the message of comedians with something more serious to say. Read more

TunesDay: you just gotta smile…

It’s hard to think of a band that was greater for longer with less payoff than the now-defunct Catherine Wheel. From 1992’s staggering debut, Ferment, through their much (and unfairly) maligned 2000 coda, Wishville, CW gave us three brilliant records, two good ones, and an outtakes/B-sides compilation (Like Cats and Dogs) that was better than most of the best original studio efforts being released today.

Oh yeah, and a lot of insanely great (and obscenely loud) live shows. Read more

TunesDay: Can music violate the Geneva Conventions (or the 8th Amendment)?

Yow. If you missed the story, US PsyOps personnel are using music as a torture tactic on captives in Iraq. How silly, you say? Torture someone with music? Well, check out the playlist.

  1. “Fuck Your God” – Deicide
  2. “Die MF Die” – Dope
  3. “Take Your Best Shot” – Dope
  4. “White America” – Eminem
  5. “Kim” – Eminem
  6. “Barney Theme Song” – Barney Read more

Four simple steps to solving the NBA’s persistent ref problem

I don’t write about sports issues here very often, but … let’s make an exception for this one.

The NBA is in the news big time today, and not because of last night’s Lakers win over the Celtics. Former referee Tim Donaghy, convicted of taking bribes and betting on games he officiated, has now alleged that at least two games – one in 2002 and another in 2005 – involved inappropriate behavior by game officials. In 2002, he says, game 6 of the Western Conference finals between LA and Sacramento was fixed outright. Read more

Saturday Video Roundup: Sum some summertime

Technically we’re still a few days away from Solstice, I know, but … you should see the weather here in Colorado. Trust me, folks – it’s summer. So to sort of pre-honor the arrival of sun season, SVR today presents a few vids to put you in a surf, sand and sky kinda mood. Up first, the supremely cool Scot Sax’s Bachelor Number 1 project with my all-time favorite summer song, “I Am the Summertime.”

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TunesDay: what is, what was and what almost was – the S&R interview with Don Dixon

I’ve been a very big Don Dixon fan since the late ’70s, so when his new CD, The Nu-Look, dropped I was bouncing around the living room like Snoopy doing a happy dance. Sadly, a lot of people don’t know Don’s music – although many know his work as the producer of Murmur and Reckoning by REM and multiple records from The Smithereens and Guadalcanal Diary (as well as stuff from Chris Stamey, Beat Rodeo, Kim Carnes, The Connells, Marshall Crenshaw, Hootie & the Blowfish, Tommy Keene, Let’s Active, James McMurtry, The Pinetops, The Reivers, Matthew Sweet and X-Teens).

The new disc marks something of a departure. Read more

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