Posted by: on June 30, 2008 at 4:00 pm

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Tad, “Grease Box” (Giant, 1993)

From its album art, to their snap-up signing, to their eventual drop from major label sight, Tad and their lone Giant record — Inhaler; seriously, check out its placeholding, corpo art dept., “this is alternative” cover art — are one of the best anomalies in rock-n-roll history. Tad Doyle, grunge confidant and sometime butcher, is so all over “Grease Box,” his hair in his face and his giant head nodding back and forth like he’s making a decision on how to lay waste to you. And the song’s grunge rattle is in place, with Mudhoney in there but more metal, and Alice in Chains in the chorus. It’s still a great jam, and seeing this video — as 90s as the cover art of Inhaler — is kind of fun now. Spinning hands at 2:07! — Johnny Loftus

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Posted by: on June 30, 2008 at 3:00 pm

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Posted by: on June 30, 2008 at 2:51 pm

A case of mistaken identity. A series of anonymous phone calls. Interrogation by a stern, fifty-ish CIA/FBI/ATF official. Young people running from their wannabe captors, jumping out of windows, ducking from explosions. White people in sleek, sterile offices tracking and watching and toying with cool gadgets. And the obligatory passport; someone always has to look at a passport. Welcome to the world of the Hollywood technological thriller. Don’t know about you, but we’re over this shit. It all looks the same; Hackers meets Untraceable meets 88 Minutes. Fifty bucks if you can name the voice on the cell phone…

– Harry Caul

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Posted by: on June 30, 2008 at 1:53 pm

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Officer: “Why didn’t you let the doctors take the five bullets out of you?”
Ricky: “Souvenirs.”

Quite possibly the toughest motherfucker of all time, Ricky utters this gem in the first few minutes of the film that chronicles his bad ass life, the aptly titled The Story of Ricky. What follows is one of the most mind-blowing, laugh your ass off, holy-fucking-shit-blood-and-guts martial arts film ever. Eyeballs pop out, heads get punched off, guts ripped out, limbs get severed. Shit, even a face gets sliced off. The scene above doesn’t give away much of the, ahem, “plot,” but it does give you a glimpse into the amazing power of Ricky. Stick it in your queue and let him pound you into meat. More amazing video after the jump. Read more

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Posted by: on June 30, 2008 at 1:00 pm


Factor, Chandelier (Fake Four, 2008)

MP3: “More Rude Than Handsome (Feat. Awol One)”

Factor
is holding it down in Saskatoon. Maybe the city located in south-central Saskatchewan seems remote to you. But hey, it’s only 15 hours from Minneapolis, Minn. and about six from Medicine Hat, Alberta, which is one of coolest names for a town in the history of names for towns. So, in the grand scheme, is Factor’s home base any different, distance-wise or otherwise, than any of the far-flung places that music bleeds out of on a daily, hourly basis? Nope. Chandelier, the producer’s first solo full-length, is instrumental hip-hop in the style of DJ Shadow with the added flourish of numerous MC guest shots. Sadat X of Brand Nubian (featured on the chopped funk of “Time of the Year”; he rhymes “tractor” with “Factor”…), Awol One of LA’s Shape Shifters crew (on the atmospheric, piano-tinged “More Rude Than Handsome”), and fellow Canadians such as Vancouver-based Josh Martinez — he dresses up the fluid pace of “The Leen” — and Noah23, who on “Electric Furs of a Lynx” namechecks Bruce Springsteen, Sonic Youth, New York Dolls, and others like a proper noun version of Aesop Rock. Other highlights include “On My Way” with Oakland, Calif. MC Kirby Dominant and “Last Night’s Dream,” a true instrumental that moves on a wave of melancholy. The Shadow reference isn’t shallow. Endtroducing worked (still works) because its creator discovered how to create effective substance from a form that often falls into samey territory. While Chandelier isn’t legendary, Factor has a way with a sample and a beat, and the MCs he’s working with seem to flow their vocals seamlessly into whatever quirk or moment he’s working with on their tracks. Put your hands up for Saskatoon. — Johnny Loftus

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Posted by: on June 30, 2008 at 10:00 am


Wolf Parade, At Mount Zoomer (Sub Pop Records, 2008)

MP3: “Soldier’s Grin”

It’d be easy to evaluate At Mount ZoomerWolf Parade’s second act to their first, 2006’s Apologies to The Queen Mary — through the scope of an extremely successful band, following up an extremely successful debut album. On the other hand, it’s almost hard not to, as sophomore albums are generally sliced open with a slightly sharper edge of the sword the second time around. But the reality here is that even though At Mount Zoomer is technically Wolf Parade’s second record, it seems more like the fifth or sixth, considering band members Spencer Krug and Dan Boeckner’s side-project addiction. At this point, any fan of Apologies to The Queen Mary has become well versed in each songwriter’s distinct style: Boeckner writes the jean jacket anthems; the dirty knees rockers that nod to Springsteen and Strummer, with songs full of sweat, jangley chords, triumphant melodies, and a scratchy delivery that speaks of countless nights spent smoking and drinking cheap whiskey. Read more

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Posted by: on June 30, 2008 at 9:18 am

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Watch, as Amy Winhouse takes a swing at a grope-y groupie at this past weekend’s Glastonbury Festival.

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Posted by: on June 29, 2008 at 12:00 pm

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Tricky, “Council Estate” (Domino, 2008)

Dude, is that Tricky? The last time we saw the 1995 Mercury Prize winner, he was being berated by Gary Oldman during a hungover Saturday viewing of the TNT favorite The Fifth Element. Musically, his rasp has been absent. Until now, however, since he’s apparently on Domino now and issuing the oft-delayed Knowle West Boy this September in the US. “Council Estate” is the lead single, and it burbles to life midway through. Tricky might still have something gritty in his tank. — Johnny Loftus

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Posted by: on June 26, 2008 at 4:30 pm


Jeff Howitt — founder of Loco Gnosis Records, and lead singer of Detroit rock weirdos Duende! — is crazy. Or maybe crazy isn’t the right word. Perhaps “passionate” is a better fit. Either way, the sporadic, stream-of-consciousness style answers he gave to our questions about him, his label, and his involvement Read more

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Posted by: on June 26, 2008 at 4:00 pm

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Suicide, “Ghost Rider” (Live, 1977/1978)

We can see it: Liars, Peaches, Primal Scream, and Nick Cave are all big fans of Suicide — the 70s art/synth-punk duo fronted by Alan Vega and Marin Rev. But Bruce Springsteen? That’s a new one on us. Indeed all of these artists — including the Boss — as well as Vincent Gallo, the Horrors, Spiritualized, and many more, will pay tribute to the no-wave legends on limited edition 10″ singles, to be released in year-long installments, starting this July. Here, we bring you live Suicide, screaming and whooping their way through their classic “Ghost Rider.” With Rev engaged in some bizarre interpretive dance amongst the always-badass-looking Vega’s haunted keyboards and minimal drum machine beats, we encourage you to watch, listen, and ponder how Bruce went from getting into this to writing “Born in the USA.” — Ryan Allen

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