Thursday, December 27, 2007

2007: the end

I have always enjoyed looking back at a calendar year; remembering good times and milestones, recounting specific art or events that made the year better. Maybe I am just getting older but this year and other recent years seem to have less standout moments and more of a general ongoing vibe.

my 2007 highlights:
I bought more music in 2007 than probably the previous 10 years combined (damn record companies!).
Easily the best song I heard was Kanye West's "Stronger". I got a little sick of it but it was THE BANGER of 07.

Blaqk Audio and M.I.A. are close to the top. However the most solid album all the way through goes to Common "Finding Forever".

The only super standout punk/HC release this year could be Go It Alone's "Histories".

I am gonna break my own rules and suggest that an album released in 2006 was actually my favorite of 2007...
"The Black Parade" by My Chemical Romance!

I am almost embarrassed to admit it but a year later, I still can't get enough of this concept album.

I enjoyed all the art openings I attended at Shooting Gallery/White Walls and Upper Playground but I think Chris Conn Askew's prints got me more excited.

As for live music, the best of 2006 ended up my favorites of 2007 too: 108 and Never Healed with From Monument To Masses right up there too.
Of course Baader Brains killed it with their live return and lp + shirt.

Maybe the biggest highlight of 2007 was the band that I helped form with some friends. In the end, it dissolves without much of anything. However, it did allow me to sharpen my teeth.
I also enjoyed my first proper vacation in many many years as I travelled across the American Southwest. Along the way, a lot of food, fun, and family were found.

My mood starting 2008 is far far better than my mood a year ago.
I look forward to a year with new beginnings, being more creative, and pursuing interests found in the later part of 2007.


Monday, December 24, 2007

bad back

One year ago today, I had a surprisingly life changing occurrence. I hurt my back.

I had "thrown out" my back twice before and expected this to subside after a day or two of taking it easy. It didn't. In the end, I could count maybe 10 days out of all of 2007 that I felt no pain or discomfort from my lower back.
With two fairly non-productive doctor's visits and a helpful physical therapist, I have deduced that I have a degenerative disc in my spine. Not too out-of-the-ordinary except that I am a little young for this to be happening.
Oh, the woes of growing old.

All my life, I was pretty aware of my back. I tried to always stand and lift properly. Now I walk as much as possible and do specific stretches 3 times a day... every day.
I came to more of an understanding for people that get hooked on painkillers. It sux when you can't focus or do things you want to do because of a persistent injury.

I apologize to everyone I may have been cranky to or who I may not have been as social with due to my bad back.

Friday, December 21, 2007

Justice League re-runs

Lately, I have taken to faithfully watching Justice League (known as Justice League Unlimited when it originally aired)courtesy of Boomerang.

It is probably the best television adaptation of a comic book franchise I have ever seen. It revamps the stories and characters slightly without re-imagining the entire look or mythos (a la The Batman which looks pretty cool but takes too many liberties with a near perfect character... and don't get me started on their "extreme" Joker).

Every episode stars a rotating cast of Justice League members with a few mainstays such as John Stewart's Green Lantern, Batman, and/or Wonder Woman. For some reason, Martian Manhunter appears to be the League's overseer (did he ever have that role in the books?). Even the themes hint pretty heavy on more "mature" ideas of sexuality/attraction.

As I am more of a Marvel fan than a DC fan, I can't help but wonder why the hell Marvel has not taken this model and applied it to a team such as The Avengers. Even the extended X-Men cast of characters could provide an interesting series (albeit perhaps tired by now).

Since I am only watching re-runs, and the only upcoming comic book cartoon I am aware of is a seemingly very cartoony Spectacular Spider-Man (with awesome character designs), I sure hope MArvel or DC picks up this ball and produces a decent comic book based TV show.

Monday, December 10, 2007

Golden Compass at the box office

After its opening weekend, The Golden Compass is performing disappointingly.
It barely surpassed the earnings of the fantasy bullshit movie, Eragon.

There are claims that the watering down of the anti-religious elements from the novels both alienated the large Christian audience and the book's fanbase. (Internationally the film fared a little better.)

Saturday, December 08, 2007

Baader Brains return

Last night (7Dec2007), the force of Baader Brains was unleashed once again at 924 Gilman St. After an extremely long hiatus, the soldiers of Baader Brains made revolutionary culture dressed like Japanese street fighters circa 1968.

Baader Brains' return was made complete with the release of their 12''.

The liner notes provide further introduction into the mythos of Baader Brains and their affiliates The Young Tiger Freedom Organization. The lyrics, quotes, and bios are so chock-full of radical historical references, it will hopefully inspire some digging deeper (or just appreciation of that which is mentioned).
The Unconventional Warfare Survival Handbook is included.

Also for the $9, one got a Young Tiger Freedom Organization t-shirt!

All together, it is an amazing package both politically and artistically.

Baader Brains mp3

People Get Ready!

Thursday, December 06, 2007

Super Hero Beatdown

just because Spider-Man and Batman are from different universes, doesn't mean they can't team-up against gutter punx

(thanx Francis)

Wednesday, December 05, 2007

fanboy news day

Adam Brody is reportedly cast as The Flash (Wally West) in Justice League.

Also the film is supposed to open with the funeral of Barry Allen.

New Dark Knight poster:

and some info on the plot.

Speed Racer!
I am not a fan of the TV show and am more just curious how in the hell it is gonna be made into a movie.
Racer X is played by Matthew Fox and I was sure there was no way he would be wearing that cheezy outfit... Well, he is!!!
Emile Hirsch is Speed Racer I guess.

Over dinner the other night, my friends and I discussed the upcoming G.I. JOE film. I can't see this movie being anything but awful.
Ray Park is now playing good old Snake Eyes. I sure hope he wears that kooky visor and has a pet wolf!!


In serious movie news...
The Harvey Milk biopic by Gus Van Sant is getting underway.
If you live here in the wonderful Bay Area, they are having open casting calls for extras. What a fuckin' cast!
Sean Penn as Harvey Milk
Josh Brolin as Dan White (the fucker who killed Milk)
Emile Hirsch as gay rights activist Cleve Jones
James Franco as Scott Smith (Milk's lover and campaign manager)

Monday, December 03, 2007

Dark Knight costumes


simple, realistic, & scary

The BAD:

why does Batman need extreme armor?!

Duran Duran: redcarpetmassacre NY

At the start of November, Duran Duran played nine nights in a New York Broadway theater, in support of a new record, Red Carpet Massacre. Their show, interestingly enough, contained a Kraftwerk-styled set including a cover of-- among other things-- the Normal's "Warm Leatherette", a grotty old synth oddity about having sex during serious car accidents.

(Blaqk Audio take note)
Read more about this interesting reinvention in an interview with John Taylor.

Saturday, December 01, 2007

more Moz xenophobic blah

decide for yourselves:

"The gates of England are flooded. The country's been thrown away.

"... the higher the influx into England the more the British identity disappears"

However, Morrissey damns England over the cost of living and admits that managed immigration "enriches" the country.

I wonder how he is any different from any similarly aged White living in or around LA that feels America has lost its identity to the supposed influx of Spanish speaking immigrants?
Afterall, Moz practically fetishizes that immigrant community.
(I use the word immigrant fully recognizing that many Spanish speaking folks in Southern California were there before the Anglos.)

(thanx Jesse)