Wednesday, March 17, 2010


Apparently, I'm into exclamation points in headlines tonight. But this one deserves it. Record Store Day is April 17!

f you haven't heard of this day before, it's a day when everyone should unplug iTunes or your favorite torrent tracker or whatever and actually go to your local record store and buy an album or two or three. That's right albums--as in vinyl LPs. The hope is that you make it a habit and keep some of these incredible stores in business.

I'm actually planning to visit several record stores on Record Store Day, including the mom-and-pop-shop right around the corner from me, Shady Dog Records. Start planning your trip now! Save a paycheck and invest in some vinyl.

Lemmy is here!!

Like a lot of guys my age, I cut my rock 'n' roll teeth on punk, hard rock and metal when I was a pre-teen and teenager. And also like a lot of guys my age, the band Motorhead and their onslaught of proto-metal rawk was like an adrenaline shot to my ears. Metallica, Fugazi, Black Sabbath, Motley Crue, Megadeth, Anthrax, Dead Milkmen, Butthole Surfers and the Sex Pistols were all favorites, too. But nobody sounded like Motorhead.

So I'm pretty excited about the release of Lemmy the movie. In fact, I have a little embarassment over how giddy I am with anticipation about this film. It's going to be tremendous, as this trailer clearly outlines.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

a beautiful blend of new- and old-school musicality

This is one of my favorite videos on YouTube. It explains how a funk rhythm breakdown in a song released by The Winstons in 1969 titled "Amen, Brother" became one of the most famous and widely used six seconds of music in western culture.

For a lot of people, sampling, DJing and modern synthesis is still a somewhat controversial act (yes, even in 2010). To be sure, you can't deny the incredible musicianship of this hip young drummer giving it his funky best in the middle of the original ripping R&B tune. But in my mind, it's tough to ignore the incredible ways this break beat has been used over the years to create powerful new music. Just watch and see.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Let's road trip for a Kingpin

Now offering one more reason to visit Toronto: The Sky Blue Sky Sandwich Shop.

Shop owner Chad Comfort created a deluxe deli where each menu item is named after a Wilco song. And the name for the whole establishment obviously takes it's name from the 2007 album released by the band. As a big deli sammich fan and a Wilco lover, too, I am very interested.

Just one question, though. What's in the "A Shot In the Arm" breakfast sandwich? What can you put in a sandwich that's bloodier than blood?

Via Pitchfork: Wilco: The Sandwich Shop

Sunday, February 28, 2010

Tab hits the iPhone age

There are already a few companies making digital sheet music readers, but they're mostly expensive units for professional musicians. Now a company that calls itself iTab (subtract points for unoriginal, yet market-friendly name) has come up with a smartphone-sized device that's centered around the universal language of guitarists: tab (add points for enabling guitar geekery).

The touchscreen iTab lets you quickly flip through your tab list to select the song you want. Then the iTab will scroll through the lyrics and chords at whatever speed you select (so you can match the song's tempo) while you play along. Having trouble with a song? iTab offers downloadable videos to help you out with any tough parts. iTab has also built an accompanying store where you can download more tabs.

The iTab also has the ability to output the display to a TV so you can set up an instant guitar-and-karaoke party. There's even a mounting system that lets you keep it attached to your guitar's headstock. The best part is that with an estimated street price of $199, you don't have to be a professional to convince yourself to splurge on one (add more points for catering to hobbyists). The company has put some demonstration videos up on YouTube.

via engadget.

Saturday, February 27, 2010

Them Crooked Vultures gear

Guitar Edge magazine has an article up that runs through the gear that each member of Them Crooked Vultures is using on tour. It's pretty cool, because none of them use "standard" stuff at all. On another TCV front, Spinner has a video with some backstage footage of the band members talking (well, Dave Grohl, mostly) about their first gig and being on SNL.

Liars "Scissor [Mute]" video brings the awesome

Check out the video for the Liars song "Scissor [Mute]" over at Pitchfork tv. The song is pretty good, but the video kind of upstages the song and makes the whole thing more entertaining.

The cinematography (that's right -- I just used the word "cinematography" to critique a music video) is really amazing considering this was probably shot on a postage stamp budget. Best of all, even though you can see the end coming about 30 seconds in, you can't help but watch anyway.