Sunday, November 25, 2007

Saturday, November 24, 2007


Today, the score to any sequel to Amélie could smoothly transition from original Amélie music director Yann Tiersen to either Beirut, Detektivbyrån, The Octopus Project or One Ring Zero. Thus is the state of this side of pop music today: ornate/ dynamic european-fused flair.

For now, I'm giving the nod to "Detective Byran" based exclusively on Anders Flanders' bangs having crept well up and past Amélie Poulain territory!

Check out the set up for Detektivbyrån's recent live, studio performance: glock, keyboards, drums, toy piano, accordion... butterfly prints everywhere... nifty hairdo. They got it all! Oh, and the music that flows from them... positively mesmerizing:

VIDEO Om Du Möter Varg by Detektivbyrån

Thursday, November 22, 2007


Detektivbyrån, from Göteborg, Sweden, describe themselves as "glockenspiel ´n´ accordion on top of fuzzy beats, swinging hugs and sweet respect. Detektivbyrån is as honest as it's possible to be nowadays. Detektivbyrån is simply Music All Inclusive."

Within seconds of playing the "music box" version of Hem Ljuva Hem, the Goose was literally waltzing across the room, arms stretched wide. Lovely:
MP3 Hem Ljuva Hem [Music Box] by Detektivbyrån

And here's some fun, frenetic, accordion-fueled, Swedish carnival music for the time-traveller in all of us. Everyone's tourist videos should look like this...

VIDEO Lyckans Undulate by Detektivbyrån
MP3 Lyckans Undulate by Detektivbyrån

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Music is Happiness

Happiness is an enthusiastic band with a synth and theremin player sporting a PLAYMOBIL® haircut! And oh how Ms. Lambert can manipulate that theremin - yeah - all the while transforming an innocent hamster into a killing (self-defence it would seem) machine. See. It's very easy to keep me happy.

VIDEO Music is happiness by The Octopus Project

The Octopus Project are an "indietronica"(!) band from Texas who have been known to collaborate with Black Moth Super Rainbow in the past and have been described as "filling their songs with brilliant contrasting colors and cascading waves of sonic bliss". Good enough for me.

Here's the excellent, highly recommended, speedy "truck" from their most recent album "Hello, Avalanche" (auto-download)...

MP3 Truck by The Octopus Project

Good Bands Gone Bad (Episode I)

Stereophonics emerged in 1997 as the latest entrant in the battle to take over the “Great Welsh Rockers” label held by the Manic Street Preachers. They were hyped all over the UK for their premiere album “Word gets around” and their raspy vocals, whip-smart lyrics and pulsating tunes combined to offer not only great promise, but a very good album that still maintains its lustre 10 years on.

Alas, they quickly fell off the rails. Their singer, seemingly suffering from sms, got somewhat high on himself, their drummer went a bit barmy and was subsequently removed of his duties, and their music became uninspired and went straight in the crapper. They still pump out the albums but perhaps I was just never a big enough fan to be sustained through these unoriginal, rock-heavy years!?!

Here's one of their multiple official videos for the largely insufferable "Have a nice day". Don't bother (unless you like watching barmy, puffy haired drummers pretending to drive a speed boat while surrounded by bikini-clad extras). Videos for their good, early songs have all been removed from the public domain, save their self-serving website. Damn those "good-band-gone-bad" bastards.

Stay tuned next week for…

Good Bands Gone Bad (Episode II)… Attack of the Coldplay*…
(actually, not much else to say on that one!)

*Star Wars is on infinite loop in our house currently, can you tell?

Monday, November 19, 2007

It's a Spice, Spice World

Caution: Guilty Pleasure Alert... I own Melanie C's first solo album and I listen to it once in a while (I like her voice, alright... give me a break!). Here's the former Ms. Sporty Spice's finest moment... VIDEO I turn to you by Melanie C.

As for Sporty's more popular former/current "band" mate, Posh - well, its hard to have anything but negative amounts of respect for her these days. But before all the surgeries and those massive sunglasses, at least, she did in fact have a sense of humour as shown here in this piss-taking "interview" she and her hubby did with Borat's hip-hopping alter-ego, Ali G.

Now, Posh's boytoy Becks... there's someone I do have a lot of respect for (on the field). Here's a pic of my friend Michelle with her new, backpack sporting boyfriend who she met at the airport on a recent trip from Vancouver to Disneyland. She got her kids to act cute and get his attention and then summarily cropped the kids out of the photo (and yes, the only point of a Sporty Spice blogpost is to show off this picture)!

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Harder, Better, Faster, Stronger

Not Daft Punk's official video.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

More face paint

My kids are ultra suspicious of clowns. They come by it honestly - personally I can't stand the freaks. Clowns around these parts, at least, are mostly grumpy characters under the delusion that kids find them adorable even though the kids are usually running in the opposite direction, screaming.

I'm sure that what is depicted in this Arctic Monkeys video (for a song with a most excellent title) truly represents what clowns get up to in their spare time. And they got a lot of spare time them clowns.

Caution: Video contains scenes of violence.
And clowns.

VIDEO Fluorescent Adolescent by Arctic Monkeys

Radiohead covers The Smiths

Finally... FINALLY... someone has done the Smiths justice with a proper cover. Steering clear of tradition - the painfully slow acoustic version of another band's song - Radiohead have given The Headmaster Ritual a superb treatment as part of their recent webcast series.

MP3 The Headmaster Ritual (Smiths cover) by Radiohead
VIDEO The Headmaster Ritual (Smiths cover) by Radiohead

Apparently Todd Bertuzzi now plays guitar for Radiohead!

Saturday, November 10, 2007

Goddess on a hiway

"When I see your eyes so bright/ They explode like two bugs on glass"

VIDEO Goddess on a hiway by Mercury Rev

How come the "America" I drive through never looks like this?

Farewell my fair weather friend

Forget the dog days of (almost) winter and put some colour into that pointy little head of yours... “when the weather gets warm we get the same things on our minds as you boys do.”

VIDEO Fair Weather Friends by Daedelus

Thursday, November 8, 2007

Hugs, Guitars and Questionable Nuts

Silly school system
I've been reduced to contemplating the merits of same-sex elementary school classes and my regular hate-on for uniforms in public schools over and over lately, so I thank the Zombie Princess for blogging about these juicy nuggets of brow-furrowing quality...

A 13-year old was given two days detention recently for violating a school policy banning public displays of affection when she hugged two friends! It is almost as sad that her family is not shouting from the rooftops about this but rather making rather gentle statements like "I’m just hoping the school board will open their eyes and just realize that maybe they shouldn’t be punishing us for hugs". They even felt the need to justify things a bit by noting that the embraces weren’t even real hugs, "just an arm around the shoulder and slight squeeze"!!!

AND… officials at an elementary school south of Boston have banned kids from playing tag, touch football and any other unsupervised chase game during recess for fear they'll get hurt and hold the school liable.

Oh my. No hugs and games of tag???? This is where I reveal that my son isn't really unschooled (haha suckers!)… he's actually serving a permanent detention for being HUMAN and HAVING! TOO! MUCH! FUN!

Guitar hero
A little known fact (ie: there were no witnesses): I hit 76% of the notes on "Hit me with your best shot" recently ("easy" level). AND, I my fingers cramped-up. Check out the following link to see what my friend Hayden will be up to in say 6-8 months… a year tops! Even if you don't understand the lasting attraction of guitar hero, this frat boy's playing is mind-bogglingly impressive... VIDEO Expert Guitar Hero

And finally...
Why do people like hazelnuts? I like most things (I think), but the unnatural, gawd-awful putridness of hazelnuts leaves me cold. Good thing then that today, when someone at the office gave me a chocolate with hidden hazelnut components, I had a "You're doin' a heckuva job brownie (with raspberries)" at the ready to wash away the taste-stench. So I guess the real question is, why don't more people embrace the whimsicaly beautiful chocolate/raspberry union and stop trying to ruin chocolate with nuts of less than marginal value? I'm talking to you Switzerland!