Thursday, December 24, 2009

Every Time This Year, We Bust Christmas Carols

Indeed, "I don't care what your momma says, Christmastime is near." With that line in mind, Christmas is a time for celebration and incredibly awesome songs about the holiday season. This is not awesome like the Chipmunks singing carols, this is awesome like Hammer coming through your chimney with parachute pants and doing the running man in your living rooms while handing out presents. Here are four great Christmas classics to add to your holiday music collection. In this collection of hoiliday classics, the Ramones teach us to be civil to one another this time of year, Run DMC tells us about ill reindeers and what it is like on Hollis Ave after dark and King Diamond is well...King Diamond. Lastly, there's the famous Saturday Night Live song "I Wish It Was Christmas Today" which was recently updated by Julian Casablancas of The Strokes. Enjoy this holiday season or else "there's no presents for this Christmas."

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Frusciante Is Officially Out Of Chili Peppers

What seemed like speculation on Monday turned out to be the truth. John Frusciante has left the Red Hot Chili Peppers and did so a year ago while the band was on hiatus. You can read more about Frusciante's departure and his comments regarding it at his Myspace.

2010 Predictions!!!

As we approach the end of 2009, many sites, blogs, magazines, journalists have been compliling their lists of the best of this year and decade. Instead, let us look into the musical crystal ball to provide a little glimpse of 2010 in music.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Genesis And The Stooges Inducted In 2010 Hall Of Fame Class

Yes, the excitement on my part is barely contained. Genesis and The Stooges are finally being inducted in the Rock And Roll Hall of Fame. Two incredible and influential bands who have been long overlooked for induction and one of those, The Stooges, has been nominated seven times. For The Stooges, the year began on a sad note with the passing of guitarist Ron Asheton but it is nice to see them finally rewarded for their contributions to Rock and helping shape the sound of noise, distorted guitars and Punk in the years after they disbanded.

Monday, December 14, 2009

Yes, This Is Really Happening

Since there's going to be a wait for the next Rock Band game, we are being honored with...err...provided a interesting stopgap game in the form of Rock Band: Green Day. In all honesty, and also not being a fan of Green Day (read: their current material and a lot of the old material), I can say the excitement for this game is very low (although the idea of seeing certain venues like Gilman Street and possibly a Woodstock 1994 location provides some enthusiasm). I'm not quite sure why Green Day was chosen to have their career represented in musical video game form but nonetheless, it's a very cool honor for them. You might even say it's Tré Cool. Yeah, I went there.

Frusciante Is Dreaming Of Things Other Than Californication?

Normally, I refuse to post rumors but finally, here's a rumor that would truly suck if turns out to be true. According to TwentyFourBit (via various sources), it is rumored that John Frusciante may have departed from Red Hot Chili Peppers once again. Frusciante's rumored replacement is Josh Klinghoffer, who provided extra guitar on their last tour as well as released an album, A Sphere In The Heart Of Silence, with Frusciante in 2004 and two Ataxia albums, with Frusciante and Fugazi's Joe Lally, in 2004 and 2007.

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Egg (2000-2009) (December Mixtape)

Side A
1. The Golden Age by Beck
2. Song No.1 by Ima Robot
3. Fuzzy by The Incredible Moses Leroy
4. Glorious #1 by Remy Zero
5. B.O.B by Outkast

Side B
6. Shakedown! by theStart
7. Hash Pipe by Weezer
8. What's A Girl To Do by Bat For Lashes
9. Sunday After You by Kenna
10. Things You Can Do by Deltron 3030

Side C
11. Can't Stop by Red Hot Chili Peppers
12. Seven Nation Army by The White Stripes
13. Blood And Thunder by Mastodon
14. Golden Skans by Klaxons
15. Jurass Finish First by Jurassic 5

Side D
16. Rise Up With Fists!! by Jenny Lewis and the Watson Twins
17. In The Fade by Queens Of The Stone Age
18. Rock Star - Poser by N.E.R.D.
19. Stroker Ace by Lovage
20. Seven-Eleven by Mindless Self Indulgence

Friday, December 11, 2009

The Great White Stripes North

As reported by Pitchfork, The White Stripes have a limited edition box set due this Spring chronicling their 2007 Canadian Tour in which the duo played every Canadian province and territory. The set, entitled Under Great White Northern Lights, comes with a DVD featuring a documentary of said title along with another DVD of their 10th anniversary concert, a 16-track live album on both vinyl and CD, a 7" featuring "Icky Thump" and "The Wheels On The Bus," both performed live, a slik screen print and, finally, a 208-page tour book filled with photos and featuring a Jim Jarmusch written foreword.

Portishead Returns...Again!

A year ago, there was excitement over the new Portishead album, the first one in 11 years. Now, you can be excited that the group has written and recorded a new song for Amnesty International entitled "Chase The Tear" which also has a performance video to accompany it. Check out the video and definitely purchase the single. Also, Portishead's Geoff Barrow was recently interviewed about his musical influences at different five year intervals in his life at Pitchfork Here's to hoping that after Barrow is finished with Beak>, another Portishead album is around the corner. Check out the video and a link to purchase the new single after the jump.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Interview: Jamey Jasta of Hatebreed

Recently, I had the pleasure of meeting with Jamey Jasta of Hatebreed to discuss the band, their two new albums, For The Lions and Hatebreed, and how he's one of the hardest working person in Hardcore and Metal. Thanks to Jamey for his time, the band's tour manager, James, for granting the interview and to Bill at E1 for setting everything up. This interview took place outside House Of Blues on December 10, 2009.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

In Case You Missed It: Jawbox On Late Night With Jimmy Fallon

Jawbox played for the first time in almost 13 years as they performed "Savory" from the remastered and recently reissued 1994 classic, For Your Own Special Sweetheart, on Late Night With Jimmy Fallon. Check out the video after the jump.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

9th Annual Independent Music Awards

Vienna Teng is nominated in the Folk/Singer-Songwriter category for the 9th Annual Independent Music Awards. She is nominated for the track "Antebellum" from her recent release, Inland Territory. Be sure to sign up and give her vote as she and Alex Wong generously gave this blog its very first interview. Congratulations to all of the contestants in each of the categories and be sure to vote people.

Monday, December 7, 2009

One Hit Wonder Or One Hit Blunder

Today Subject: "Bad Day" by Daniel Powter

For the first time ever, the song up for debate is considered the "one hit wonder of the decade" according to Billboard. With that being said, what an honor it is to question the validity of the one hit wonder status behind "Bad Day" by Daniel Powter, a song so great that to hear it on American Idol meant while your Idol career was over, you could still have a successful career in film, music or just have the status as a person who did not win American Idol. Hey, in the end, it was better to hear that song than to win (ex. Taylor Hicks' success vs. the successes of Chris Daughtry, Kellie Pickler and Katherine McPhee. Look it up, the results and statistics do not lie). Was Powter's "Bad Day" a good day in disguise or was it a less lame day than the ones surrounding it but still bad in its own way?

Thursday, December 3, 2009

...And The Award Goes To...

Who cares! The 52nd Grammy nominees were announced and the list is another assortment of popular selling artists and confusing selections. Along with those two things comes the disappointment in knowing that Pearl Jam's Backspacer is not deserving of a Best Rock Album nomination despite its favorable reviews and debut at No.1 on the Billboard 200. Omissions such as this are nothing new but still it makes people care less about the Grammy awards each year.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

December Will Be Magic Again

Here are a few notable releases to help fill someone's stocking, give as a gift or play at your office party this December.

Thursday, November 26, 2009

In Case You Missed It: Mos Def & Talib Kweli On Late Night With Jimmy Fallon

Mos Def and Talib Kweli stopped by Late Night With Jimmy Fallon along with with Amber Coffman and Haley Dekle of Dirty Projectors last night to perform "History" from Mos Def's recent release, The Ecstatic. Check out the video after the jump

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

West Philadelphia, Neil Young Was Born And Raised

Courtesy of Stereogum, comes this clip that is amusing on so many different levels. It's Jimmy Fallon as Neil Young performing the theme song from The Fresh Prince Of Bel Air. I imagine if Neil Young ever decided to sing "when a couple of guys who were up to no good started making trouble in my neighborhood," this is definitely what it would sound like.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Two Worlds Collide

Saturday Night Live's newest digital short is definitely one of the funniest videos and songs The Lonely Island has come up. All that needs to be said is that it involves Kenan Thompson as Reba McIntire. That should give you a small indication of the humor of this video which can be found after the jump.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Costello + The Roots = Late Night Awesomeness

The Roots filled in for The Attractions as backing band to Elvis Costello as he appeared on Late Night With Jimmy Fallon to promote the DVD release of season one of his Sundance Channel show, Spectacle, as well as season two's premiere on December 9. While appearing as a guest, Costello performed a couple of his classics with The Legendary Roots Crew. Check out the videos after the jump.

No Gold In Anvil's Future

The shortlist for the Best Documentary award at the 82nd Oscars was released last week. Fifteen films made the list, none of which were Anvil: The Story Of Anvil, the little documentary of a Canadian Metal band still chasing their dream of Rock stardom after 25-plus years. A documentary which was well received by audiences and critics throughout the world. Sadly, this film did not make the list which is a pity because it was an excellent documentary that had humor and heart.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

In Case You Missed It: Neko Case On Late Night With Jimmy Fallon

Neko Case appeared on Late Night With Jimmy Fallon to perform "Red Tide" from her recent release and Amazon's album of the year, Middle Cyclone. Check out the video after the jump

Friday, November 13, 2009

5 Lion Formation (November Mixtape)

Side 1: Dinner
1. Buckethead by Colonel Claypool's Bucket of Bernie Brains
2. X-Ray Mind by Mad Season
3. Metaphysical by Handsome Boy Modeling School feat. Mike D. & Miho Hattori
4. Oh Well, Maybe by The Grays
5. Radon Balloon by Oysterhead
6. Storm Coming by Gnarls Barkley
7. Brand New Colony by The Postal Service
8. Can't Get A Read On You by Tinted Windows

Side 2: Activities
9. 9MM by Butter 08
10. Definition by Black Star
11. Rock The House by Gorillaz
12. Get Up Punk by General Patton vs. The X-ecutioners
13. Spineless by Melvins & Skeleton Key
14. In The Fire by Roadrunner United
15. Disorder by Slayer & Ice-T
16. Protect Ya Neck by Wu-Tang Clan

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

In Case You Missed It: Norah Jones Performing On The Late Show With David Letterman

Norah Jones appeared on the Late Show With David Letterman last night to perform "Chasing Pirates," the lead single to her new album, The Fall (in stores November 17). Check out the video after the jump and by the way, NPR is streaming The Fall on their site.

Death Reincarnated

The music industry is a strange thing. One minute, you are popular or the next big thing, the next minute, you are forgotten and relegated to cutout bins (do those even exist anymore). Some artists, despite their forward thinking and ingenuity, either become underappreaciated genuses or legends due to their audio contributions. Death is a band is never had an opportunity to be the former and are now being noted as the latter courtesy of a compilation released by Drag City featuring seven recordings of the band from the mid-70's.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

My Animated Morning Jacket

As posted on Stewie's Playground (by way of Pitchfork and TwentyFourBit), My Morning Jacket will be making a guest appearance on the November 22 episode of American Dad titled "My Morning Straitjacket." In this episode, Stan becomes a fan of the band, who are voicing themselves and, according to the images, able to fly. Comedian/actor Zach Galifianakis (The Hangover, Bored To Death) also makes a guest appearance in the episode.

Monday, November 9, 2009

Hear A Stream Of Them Crooked Vultures' Self-Titled Debut.

A couple of weeks ago, Them Crooked Vultures premiered "New Fang" from their debut album on YouTube and last week, the band released "Mind Eraser, No Chaser" as a free download on iTunes. This week, the band has streamed the entire through YouTube.

Hear Norah Jones' The Fall

After hearing reports of Norah Jones working with Ryan Adams and Okkervil River's Will Scheff, the anticipation for her new album, The Fall, is high. The album's first single, "Chasing Pirates," with its beautifully sung melody, is only one example of her sound which is a combination of Norah Jones' sound and melody but with some tweaking, experimentation and a new lineup of musicians. Stream The Fall at NPR.

PIxies Giving You Free Taste Of Live Doolittle

While Pixies are on tour promoting the 20th anniversary of their classic album, Doolittle, they were kind enough to distribute a free four song, live EP of a Doolittle performance recorded in Paris on October 16. The EP includes the album cuts, "Here Comes Your Man," "Crackity Jones" and "Gouge Away" as well as the Doolittle b-side, "Dancing The Manta Ray." Be sure to catch Pixies performing Doolittle live in a city near you with one of the various opening acts of No Age, Bad Lieutenant, Jay Reatard, Rain Machine, Mew or Black Gold. Download Doolittle 20th Anniversary Live Sampler after the jump.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Weezer - Raditude

In one decade, Weezer more than doubled the number of their 90's recordings, releasing five albums since 2001. After releasing 2001's Weezer (The Green Album), the three following albums lacked consistency. They would start off strong and lose momentum midway or consist of a few great songs surrounded by uninspired filler. Raditude is definitely one of the most consistent albums since the band's reutrn. Does consistency mean that it is a good album or just better than the previous three releases? It's a little bit of both.

Monday, November 2, 2009

November: Giving Thanks To The Musical Gods

There are plenty interesting ways to spend your musical dollars this November especially if you wish to rediscover some classic albums or hear them for the first time. Here are a few of the ways to spread out your money this month.

Friday, October 30, 2009

In Case You Missed It: Mastodon Performing On Late Night With Jimmy Fallon

Mastodon appeared on Late Night With Jimmy Fallon last night and to perform "Divinations" from their latest album, Crack The Skye. Check out the video after the jump and check out the yeti in the background...and on the stage.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Re-Bleaching Nirvana

Next week, the reissue of Nirvana's debut album, Bleach, will arrive in stores (see: Bleach (20th Anniversary Edition) for details). Just in time for it's release, Seattle Weekly has taken the time to discuss the importance of this album through a series of articles and interviews with the album's producer, Jack Endino, as well two interviews conducted by former Nirvana bassist Krist Novoselic and featuring the album's two drummers, Dale Crover (Melvins) and Chad Channing (Before Cars). Links to the articles can be found after the jump.

Enough With Your Poppycock, Frasier, Lilith Has Returned.

After a decade long hiatus, Lilith Fair is set to return with an 18-city tour next year. A few cities have been announced (Vancouver, Toronto, Chicago, New York and Los Angeles) and dates and further details have yet to be announced. I, for one, am very curious about it's return and excited about the possibility of a really awesome lineup for women.

In Case You Missed It: Rodrigo y Gabriela Performing On Late Late Show With Craig Ferguson

Rodrigo y Gabriela stopped by the Late Late Show With Craig Ferguson last night to perform their dedication to Jimi Hendrix, "Buster Voodoo" off of their latest release, 11:11. Check out their performance after the jump.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

One Hit Wonder Or One Hit Blunder

Today Subject: "Supermodel" by RuPaul

"You better work. Covergirl. Work it, girl. Give a twirl. Do your thing on the runway."

Oh that, RuPaul! Going on about how we should model. It brings me back to a simpler time of late night viewings of Basic Instinct or Softly From Paris on TMC right before Joe Bob's Drive In Theater, waiting until 9 p.m. to catch the newest Redman or K-Solo videos on Yo! MTV Raps and staying up late on the weekends for Headbangers Ball and 120 Minutes, or just waiting to go school the next morning and trading Basketball cards. In many ways, "Supermodel" reflects that simpler time but much like current times, I am no longer a 12-year-old and am not easily impressed by danceable Pop music with catchy hooks and drag queens...well most of the time, this is true.

Monday, October 26, 2009

Flying Around Your Stereo On November 16 & 17

The self-titled debut album from Them Crooked Vultures, featuring Josh Homme, Dave Grohl and John Paul Jones, will see a North American release on November 17 through DGC/Interscope and a UK release on November 16 through Columbia. Until then, check out "New Fang" and the tracklist for Them Crooked Vultures.

Friday, October 23, 2009

Interview: Mercedes Lander of Kittie

Recently, I had the pleasure of sitting down with Mercedes Lander, drummer of Metal goddesses, Kittie to discuss all things Kittie, and, most importantly, their new album, In The Black. Thanks to their publicist, Bill, for setting up the interview and their tour manager, Jim, for granting the interview. Also, huge thanks to Mercedes for taking time out of her schedule for the interview.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Thank You, Kanye. No, Seriously, Thank You

For a couple of days, I tried to avoid viewing this short film just on the simple fact that Kanye West and I need a break from each other. Granted, it's been over a month and he's virtually disappeared from the public's eye but even then, a break is still needed. Everything was cool until I watched We Were Once A Fairytale, West's short film directed by Spike Jonze. Now I'm just confused about everything in life and, more so, confused about Kanye West.

Friday, October 16, 2009

Interview: Jemina Pearl

Recently, I had the pleasure of meeting Jemina Pearl, formerly of Be Your Own Pet, to discuss her debut solo album, Break It Up, Lou Reed's Transformer and branching out as a solo artist. Thanks to Jemina for her time, her tour manager, Dorien, for granting the interview and to Lisa at @:30 Publicity for setting it up.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Video Graveyard

This edition of Video Graveyard is a tribute to Captain Lou Albano who passed away yesterday at the age of 76. In the 80's, WWE (then known as WWF) took part in a whole Rock-N-Wrestling angle involving MTV and Cyndi Lauper. In this angle, Albano and Lauper feuded with each other and used two famous wrestlers (Wendi Richter, The Fabulous Moolah) to settle their fued. Out of this collaboration, Albano appeared in two of Lauper's videos ("Girls Just Wanna Have Fun" and " The Goonies 'R' Good Enough). All of which are awesome and The Goonies video being more so than the other due to a bunch of 80's wrestlers being in it (Rowdy Roddy Piper, Iron Sheik, Nikolai Volkoff, The Fabulous Moolah, etc...awesome). This along with two extra videos that people around my age fondly remember from the early 90's. I'll just say it involves a certain famous Italian plumber. Rest in peace, Captain Lou and thanks for your contributions to music video and well, wrestling.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Tom Waits Brings Glitter And Doom To Your Home

Tom Waits' 2008 tour, Glitter And Doom, will be released as a live Two-CD/LP collection entitled Glitter And Doom Live on November 24 from Anti- Records. The live set compiles 17 tracks recorded over 10 shows and includes a second disc of stage banter entitled "Tom Tales." The LP version will not include "Tom Tales" but includes information on downloading MP3's of the entire collection. Until then, you check out an eight song sampler of the live album here. The album's tracklist and trailer can be seen after the jump.

Brütality Has Never Tasted So Sweet.

Aside from Gwar's appearance in Beavis And Butthead, Metal has only existed in video game form through means of guitar and band game. While it great to perform classic Black Sabbath and Iron Maiden riffs, there is still nothing like battling against armies while Mötley Crüe's Dr. Feelgood blares in the background. Thanks to Brütal Legend, you can now have this and so much more.

Anvil Is Out For Gold

If you haven't seen Anvil: The Story Of Anvil yet, cease reading this and watch it now. It is quite simply one of the best documentaries of the year and is enjoyable for non-Metal fans and people who could care less for documentaries. For those not in the know, it's a film chronicling a band that influenced many Metal bands yet never received the awards and accolades that their peers and followers earned. Despite this, Steve "Lips" Kudlow (vocals, guitar) and Robb Reiner (drums) continued the band all these years, playing gigs and releasing albums while working day jobs. This film shows this all while answering what happened to Anvil or, like a lot of people have probably asked, who is Anvil. With that said, if nominated for Best Documentary, should it win? Absolutely.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Dance For Your Life, Suzy Banyon (October Mixtape)

Side 1
1. Grave Robbers From Mars by Human Waste Project
2. Satanic Debris by Mephiskapheles
3. Phantom Of The Opera by Iron Maiden
4. Suspiria by Charlotte Hatherley
5. Feel Like A Ghost by El-P
6. Get Out Of My House by Kate Bush
7. The Sign Of The Southern Cross by Black Sabbath

Side 2
8. The Living Dead by Phantom Planet
9. Mind Playing Tricks On Me by Geto Boys
10. The Fang by Nervous Norvus
11. 6 Feet Deep by Gravediggaz
12. Dracula by Gorillaz
13. Dead Bodies by Air
14. Sleepy Hollow by Deadsy

Friday, October 9, 2009

Take That Annie Leibovitz

Jenny Owen Youngs is awesome. There's no other way to really phrase that. She writes great songs, plays banjo and is a very cool and funny person to meet. With that said, she's offering a very cool limited edition keepsake for sale during her Fall tour.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Jimmy Fallon Brings The Noise

Jimmy Fallon. If you would have told me a few months ago that I would see Megadeth on your show or that Sunny Day Real Estate would include a late night appearance on his show as part of their reunion tour itinerary, you would have been met with laughter and mocking comments in the vein of the French people in Monty Python And The Holy Grail. In the wake of the aforementioned bands, Living Colour and plenty of Indie bands, Jawbox has announced that they will make their first appearance in 12 years on Late Night With Jimmy Fallon. That's right, Jawbox will appear on Late Night With Jimmy Fallon on December 8. For those unfamiliar with Jawbox, view the videos after the jump or purchase the reissue of their stellar 1994 release, For Your Own Special Sweetheart, on November 23. Well played, Fallon, well played.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

It Takes A Donation Of $250,000 Not To Hold Us Back

Ever wanted to participate in the creation of a recording artist's new album? If so, are you a fan of Public Enemy? If the answer to both is yes, well you're in luck because Public Enemy would like your assistance in the recording of their new album. Thanks to a partnership with Sellaband, the possibility of a new P.E. album lies in your hands.

Monday, October 5, 2009

Biopics: Documentaries With Actors?

Recently, Fox Searchlight started negotiations over the rights to a Ramones biopic based off of the forthcoming book, I Slept With Joey Ramone, written by Ramone's brother, Mickey Leigh, and Punk writer, Legs McNeil (Please Kill Me: The Uncensored Oral History of Punk). While I'm a Ramones fan and think they have a very interesting story to tell, the thing is that the story has already been told in documentary form in the excellent film, End Of The Century - The Story Of The Ramones. This documentary pretty much covered all the bases of things you need to know about one of Rock's most influential bands of all time. If you need to see what they were like throughout various parts of their career, then there are several video releases to document their video and/or concert years (Lifestyles Of The Ramones, We're Outta Here, Ramones Raw, etc.). With that said, do we really need another biopic of any musician at this point. The answer is no.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

October...More Like Rocktober

Here are just a few of the awesome releases throughout October. Some are big music related video games releases, some are tributes and reissues but nonetheless, all are awesome.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Tom Petty And The Heartbreakers Hit The Internet

In one of the most unique and creative marketing strategies, Tom Petty And The Heartbreakers will be touring for their upcoming live box set, The Live Anthology (due November 24th), online. Instead of playing venues, Petty and company are presenting the box set as an online tour where you buy a ticket to download the 48 track set. Yes, you heard that correctly. An online tour to download a box set. Sure this sounds strange but unlike most digital downloads, you actually get something with your downloads other than just music.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Pearl Jam - Backspacer

Pearl Jam returns with their ninth studio release, Backspacer, and it is quite possibly the tightest set of songs the band has delivered in a while. Clocking in at a little over 36 minutes, this is also the shortest album the band has recorded to date. With songs like these, who cares about length? I certainly do not.

In Case You Missed It: Living Colour Performing On Late Night With Jimmy Fallon

Living Colour returned to late night TV as the musical guest for Late Night With Jimmy Fallon to perform "Behind The Sun" from their new album, The Chair In The Doorway (in stores now). Check out their performance after the jump.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

One Hit Wonder Or One Hit Blunder

Today's Subject: "Rico Suave" by Gerardo

Yes, it is the question for the ages. How did a smooth Latin pimp like Gerardo have one hit song despite the fact that it required you to learn two languages and technically doesn't fit within the confines of a basic radio station format? The answer is I don't know but he did, it was and it did.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Living Colour - The Chair In The Doorway

Approximately six years have passed since Living Colour released their last album, Collideoscope, and in the time passed, they've toured, put out several live performances on DVD and CD, toured again with Doug Pinnick of King's X while vocalist Corey Glover performed in Jesus Christ Superstar and changed labels. What does any of this mean? Absoultely nothing because Living Colour have delivered an album that continues with the experimentation of heavier sounds, electronics, Funk and Rock of the previous two albums while retaining all of the elements that have allowed them to stand out since their debut (1988's Vivid).

Monday, September 14, 2009

Kanye West: A Hightower And Jones Essatorial

Kanye West. What does one say about the man without resorting to name-calling or opinionated vulgarities? One just simply says Kanye West, a name that, until last night, meant rapper, producer, egomaniac and, according to South Park, gay fish. Now the name means sad, pathetic, undeserving and useless. There was nothing shocking about what he did at last night's MTV Video Music Awards. Instead, it was rude and disrespectful. In a industry where it's refreshing to see someone like Taylor Swift, given her age and success, who is a respectable teenage role model who isn't partying, flashing her vagina to cameras and becoming famous for having a reality show/sex tape existence, what gives Kanye West the right to spit on her accomplishment?

Friday, September 11, 2009

In Case You Missed It: The Coathangers On LA Ink

Last night, The Coathangers appeared on LA Ink as the band stopped into the shop for their drummer, Stephanie, to get an awesome tattoo of the band on her leg from Corey. If you missed the appearance last night, here's their cool but brief spot on last night's episode.

Thank You Friends: The Songs Of Big Star (September 2009)

Side A
1. Feel by The Posies
2. The Ballad Of El Goodo by Evan Dando
3. September Gurls by The Bangles
4. Thirteen by Mary Lou Lord
5. Jesus Christ by Teenage Fanclub
6. Kangaroo by Bat For Lashes
7. Holocaust by This Mortal Coil

Side B
8. ST100/6 by Dambuilders
9. September Gurls by Superdrag
10. Thirteen by Elliott Smith
11. Nightime by Dennison Witmer
12. Blue Moon by Damon & Naomi
13. Kangaroo by This Mortal Coil
14. Big Black Car by The Walkabouts

Thursday, September 10, 2009

New Noise Addict Album

This was something I forgot to post last week due to obsessively playing Guitar Hero 5 for a review. Ben Lee's former group Noise Addict have returned with a new album and a new lineup featuring Sebadoh frontman/Dinosaur Jr. bassist, Lou Barlow. So if you remember the 90's Noise Addict singles, "I Wish I Was Him" or "16", love Ben Lee or just love lo-fi recordings, check out their new album, It Was Never About The Audience.

The Coathangers On LA Ink

That's right! An awesome band and favorite of Hightower And Jones appearing on tonight's edition of LA Ink.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Hear The First Disc Of Big Star's Box Set, Keep An Eye On The Sky

NPR is hosting a stream of the entire first disc of the forthcoming, four disc Big Star boxset, Keep An Eye On The Sky. Definitely, check out the gems on the first disc and visit Hightower And Jones this Friday for the September mixtape. This month's tape is a tribute to Big Star and features Bat For Lashes, The Bangles, Elliott Smith and various other artists paying tribute of a band so cool that their lead singer/guitarist became the title and subject for a Replacements song.

Old World Vs. Modern World

On The Modern Lovers self-titled debut, Jonathan Richman sang "I want to keep my place in the old world" before later, and on a different track, singing "I'm in love with the modern world now." At, the end of "Old World," Richman takes a moment to acknowledge the new world and accept the change ahead. If Jonathan Richman can accept his place in both worlds and be willing to move forward, why can't legends accept Guitar Hero and Rock Band as a new medium for introducing younger fans and newer ears to music.

Got Money And A VH1 Behind The Music

It's now reported that Lil' Wayne's 2008-09 tour was the highest grossing Hip Hop tour of the year. For Weezy's victory lap, we get the return of Behind The Music tomorrow night on VH1. Enjoy this clip, courtesy of Videogum, of the rapper discussing himself playing guitar.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Let It Beatles!

I was and am not a huge Beatles fan despite knowing quite a few of them. Growing up, I'd hear the songs on the radio or sung around the house and they did nothing because they, in my mind, lacked the flair of Michael Jackson or Van Halen. In college, a classmate was shocked that I didn't like them and made me two mixtapes of their work which got me more into them and introduced me to one of my few favorite Beatles songs ("Don't Let Me Down"). Then I heard about The Beatles: Rock Band. I thought it was cool and interesting idea. Then I played the game...

Monday, September 7, 2009

Guitar Hero 5 Comes Alive!

It's a new year and the game brought plastic guitars to homes, bars and frat houses everywhere is back with a new edition to the series. With a new game, Activision brings forth new list of songs as well as new features, all or none of which you may care about. Does this game live up to the title Guitar Hero or does it fall short of the bar as did last year's Guitar Hero World Tour?

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Giveaway: Marilyn Manson Tickets

Yes, that Marilyn Manson and I'm giving away two tickets to a concert at The Rave in Milwaukee, WI on September 15. In addition to the tickets, I'm throwing in two Marilyn Manson CD-singles for "Lunchbox" and "Get Your Gunn". Old school Manson and new, live Manson in one giveaway. More details after the jump.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Video Graveyard

A couple of weeks ago, I posted Hammer and Deion Sanders' video for "Straight To My Feet" which provided a friend a chance to finally see a video he never wanted to see ever again. As we were talking, I told him there are a couple of truly, embarrassing Hammer videos. Two of which make up this post.

September: 'Tis An Awesome Month

September is chock with plenty of releases to keep you entertained throughout the month as well as opportunities to discover some new music. Here is a list of new releases that will put tunes in your heart and head for the next 30 days.


This was supposed to be a review of the Nine Inch Nails concert at the Aragon Ballroom on August 28, 2009. The key word is "was." The band was great and set featured a vast selection of songs ranging from hits and singles like "Head Like A Hole" and "March Of The Pigs" to instrumental numbers from The Fragile and Ghosts I-IV as well as an appearance from Peter Murphy of Bauhaus. While all of this was great, I had trouble focusing on the performance due to the abundance of annoyance surrounding me. Eventually, this annoyance became more of an event than the concert itself which is sad because I spent way too much to be annoyed and I really wanted to see Nine Inch Nails. So, there will not going to be a review, instead, you get this helpful guide.

Monday, August 24, 2009

A Live Downward Spiral

At last night's stop on the Wave Goodbye tour, Nine Inch Nails performed the 1994 classic, The Downward Spiral in its entirety. That means to there's no telling what audiences will witness as the band embarks on this farewell tour. This Friday night, I will be attending one of these performances and will be sure to post a piece on the show this weekend.

Two Suns (Special Edition)

On September 9, Bat For Lashes' sophomore release Two Suns will be reissued as a double CD/DVD set. According to the press release, the new edition will include live tracks, covers of songs by The Cure and Kings Of Leon and a 48 minute DVD shot at various places to provide some insight to the album's recording.

Britney Spears: Travelling Companion, Navigator & Friend

Britney Spears. While Kevin Federline and attacking cars with umbrellas may have been your undoing, that seems normal compared to the insanity you unveiled onto the public with your 2003 classic, Crossroads. In short, Crossroads is a clichéd road trip movie but as a whole, the film teaches us about self discovery, trust, learning to laugh and love and, most importantly, finding comfort in friendship after not sleeping with the Mac guy and being raised by Dan Ackroyd. More important than that, the film was written by the creator of Grey's Anatomy and Private Practice. Alright, maybe that's not as important, it just makes it funnier.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Video Graveyard

Call me foolish or call me insane but, this weekend, I plan on watching two of the classiest cinematic achievements of all time, back to back. These films are Street Fighter and Street Fighter: The Legend Of Chun-Li. It is from Street Fighter that we were given the genius video for this edition of Video Graveyard entitled "Straight To My Feet" and is performed by Hammer and Deion Sanders.

Yes, that Deion Sanders.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Weezer, Where Did The Love Go?

I'm not quite sure where it all fell apart for Weezer. Some where between Maladroit and Make Believe, the band stopped caring about the music and except for a song here and there, Rivers Cuomo stopped caring about writing personal lyrics. They cared enough to release the enjoyably, disjointed Weezer (The Red Album) but even that is a far cry from their earlier output or even their comeback album, Weezer (The Green Album). Now, they've falling further into a musical abyss by titling the new album, Raditude. Based off of the first single ("(If You Are Wondering If I Want You To) I Want You To") and the two new songs debuted at a South Korean concert ("I'm Your Daddy" and "The Girl Got Hot"), Raditude will probably be the most disappointing release of the year...period.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Bleach (20th Anniversary Edition)

That's right, Nirvana's debut turns 20 this year and Sub Pop wants to celebrate it with a reissue filled with a remastered version of the album and live performances.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Les Paul (1915–2009)

Les Paul. His contributions to music definitively shaped the sounds and bands we've grown to love and continue loving each day. The name means first class and top of the line as does the man himself as well as the guitar bearing his name. In a industry where there are very few active living legends, Paul did what he loved until the end, inspiring many musicians along the way.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Might As Well Jump...On This Deal

If you've pre-ordered or plan on pre-ordering Guitar Hero 5, Activision has a little incentive for you...a free, advance copy of Guitar Hero: Van Halen.

Monday, August 10, 2009

Them Crooked Vultures (Metro - August 10, 2009)

Three words: Them Crooked Vultures. Five additional words: are the greatest band ever. On August 10, the Metro was sold out, the house lights went down, the audence screamed and Them Crooked Vultures made their debut. To call it the greatest debut ever is like calling Kareem Abdul-Jabbar a mere center or Bruce Lee a simple martial artist. To call it promising would severely downplay the talent of the band's members and the songs that spanned their 77 minute debut.

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Interview: Hollywood Holt

Recently, I had the pleasure of sitting with Hollywood Holt to discuss Adult Swim, his first performance at Lollapalooza, mopeds, tattoos and why he's quickly becoming one of the hottest up and coming rappers. Thanks to Hollywood Holt for being such an awesome interview and thanks to his publicity team for for the interview.

Friday, August 7, 2009

You're In The Matrix, Charlie Brown (August 2009)

You're In The Matrix, Charlie Brown (August 2009)

Side One
1. Your Funeral, My Trial by Nick Cave And The Bad Seeds
2. The Wooden Song by Butthole Surfers
3. Super Stupid by Funkadelic
4. Trying To Grow A Chin by Frank Zappa
5. Gutless by Hole
6. Taking People by Cat Power
7. Everything Must Go by Manic Street Preachers
8. Heinz Baked Beans by Petra Haden

Side Two
9. Iron Maiden by Ghostface Killah
10. O Green World by Gorillaz
11. My Shadow In Vain by Tubeway Army
12. Desert Search For Techno Allah by Mr. Bungle
13. Pussywillow by The Coathangers
14. Let It Down by George Harrison
15. Mista Mista by The Fugees

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Assjack - Assjack

No one saw this coming not even Doc Brown and his DeLorean but this week sees the first official release of Hank Williams III's Hellbilly/Metal band, Assjack, and it's about time.

Since their inception, Assjack has been relegated to being no more than a concert staple for the second half Hank III's sets with the occasional bootleg release. Those who either stayed for the sets or heard the bootlegs were treated to the polar opposite of the country fueled numbers that made up his recordings as well as the titled legacy. The music was raw and furious with slight hints of country in the recordings and as time went on the songs started leaning more toward metal which is where we're at now and it is awesome.

Sorry About The Chat

To anyone looking forward to last night's chat. There were a few other things to finish and work on. The chat will be rescheduled to next week and after the jump, find out how you can join in next week's chat.

Monday, August 3, 2009

Talk To Hightower And Jones

Beginning this Wednesday, join me for weekly chats on music as well as various pop culture related things. The chats will be through Google. Feel free to come through, meet new people, discuss music and promote your band or shows.

New Pearl Jam Album On Rock Band

That's right. According to various sources, Pearl Jam's new release, Backspacer, will be released on Rock Band upon its release date. The Target exclusive release can be purchased for the game by buying a deluxe edition of the album at Target which includes download codes for the album or purchasing the album as DLC on Rock Band.

Friday, July 31, 2009

What? No Plates? Even Elvis Has Plates.

I saw an ad for these Michael Jackson lithographs today and was disappointed on so many different levels. You mean to tell me that the "King of Pop" couldn't receive his own plate set or commemorative gold coin. Seriously, I was hoping for the plate set. Although, after seeing this commercial, I'm as interested in owning these as the people in the ad are.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Doolittle Turns 20...

...and Pixies will celebrate it by playing the album in its entirety. In November. the band will play 14 shows across the U.S. promoting their 1989 masterpiece as well as some of the b-sides from the album. Tour dates are listed below.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Sub Pop: Acting Locally, Thinking Globally

Earlier this week, Harmonix revealed the Rock Band Network. A network that will allow record labels, artists, game devlopers, sound engineers and fans to create downloadable content to add to your Rock Band library for a price ($0.50-3.00) that you will set. The song submitted then will be reviewed by developers for playability, lyrical content, copyright infringement, etc. If accepted, you can have your very own song on Rock Band. This, quite simply, is one of the biggest things to happen to music in the last decade (along with Napster, MP3 players and, well, the rise of music games in general). What makes this so great?

Thursday, July 23, 2009

One Hit Wonder Or One Hit Blunder

Today's Subject: "Afternoon Delight" by Starland Vocal Band

It's about time. Finally, someone wrote a song about nooners. Not just about nooners but about saying we can have sex twice today. Throughout the history of Pop music, there have been songs about masturbation, lust, unrequited love, lesbians and whatever else you can think of. It took Starland Vocal Band, however, to say that we want our loving in the afternoon.

Monday, July 20, 2009

Soundtrack Jihad: Footloose vs. Xanadu

In my recent travels throughout the city, I found myself purchasing two DVDs for a mere six bucks. Late Friday night, I made the decision to revisit these two films back to back for three things: 1) their contributions to Western cinema, 2) their awesome soundtracks and 3) to make sure, I still enjoyed these films and didn't waste six bucks (get $94 more and you can buy 100 tacos).

These two films were Footloose and Xanadu.

The Summer Of Beasties Is Postponed

If you hadn't heard the news yet, MCA of Beastie Boys has a cancerous tumor on his left salivary gland. Luckily, it's localized and easily treatable. Due to this, the Beasties are canceling their summer performances and pushing the new album back while MCA has surgery and recovers. H & J would like to wish MCA a safe surgery and a speedy recovery because he's "cool as a cucumber in a bowl of hot sauce."

Ipecac Turns 10

It's seems like only yesterday that I was a fresh faced kid with dreams of the big city. So I quit my job at the local pizzeria, grabbed my guitar and moved to the city. There, I was working on my career as singer-songwriter while dancing on bars at Coyote Ugly...oh wait, none of that actually happened to me and that happened a year after hearing the first Fantomas album.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Beck: Helping Make The Internet Safe, One Video At A Time

Beck has been a personal favorite for years. With each album, he is able to reinvent himself as an artist and musician while still sounding very much like Beck. Now, he's on the path to reinventing his recent album, Modern Guilt, as well as The Velvet Underground's debut album in the form of videos on his website,

The Dead Weather - Horehound

Horehound is the debut album from The Dead Weather, a supergroup featuring members of The White Stripes, The Kills, Queens of the Stone Age and The Greenhornes, is more than just another fuzzy, Jack White side project. It's a surprisingly good album in a time where the few supergroups that have formed in recent history have made nothing but mediocre albums. The key is The Dead Weather sound nothing like the bands the members come from.

Sunday, July 12, 2009

One Hit Wonder Or One Hit Blunder

Today's Subject: "Whoomp! (There It Is)" by Tag Team

"Tag Team back again..." The thing is where did they come from to begin with. The world may never know but according to Wikipedia, it's Miami so I'll agree to that. In 1993, "Whoomp! (There It Is)" spawned a catchphrase, a jock anthem and a reason to use whoomp in everyday conversation. It also became one of the most overplayed and slightly annoying one hit wonders in Rap and music in general.

5 Awesome Musical Moments In Film

Lloyd Dobler holding a boombox over his head while blasting "In Your Eyes" outside of Diane Court's window is an iconic musical movie scene. It is, probably, one of the most iconic music scenes in film history slightly rivaled by Mr. Blonde cutting off the cop's ear while Stealers Wheel's "Stuck In The Middle" played on the radio or Linda Barrett slowly rising out of the pool and opening her top to The Cars' "Moving In Stereo" These are a small amount of great music moments. With so many great moments, there are probably half as many that are overlooked. Here are five of those awesome and sadly overlooked moments.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

14-18: Teenage Music Geekdom (July Mixtape)

Side 1
1. Diary Of A Madman by Gravediggaz
2. All Mine by Portishead
3. Sick To Death by Atari Teenage Riot
4. Shimmy Shimmy Ya by Ol' Dirty Bastard
5. Beergut by Fishbone
6. Bobby & Joe by Hepcat
7. Your Woman by White Town
8. Vow by Garbage
9. Sweet Shop Avengerz by Bis
10. 20 Nothing by Skankin' Pickle

Side B
11. Hell Of A Hat by The Mighty Mighty Bosstones
12. Birthday Cake by Cibo Matto
13. Lorraine's Car by Cake Like
14. Tyler by Toadies
15. The Nurse Who Loved Me by Faiure
16. Eddie Vedder by Local H
17. Skull Of A German by The Jesus Lizard
18. Pay For Me by Whale
19. Elbow Room by Hurricane
20. Hooligans by Rancid

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Mario Van Peebles...Rapping In A Movie...Really? Why?

In the last 25 years, the portrayal of Hip Hop and Rap in film has been one of a tougher image. With the exceptions of CB4, Disorderlies and Fear Of A Black Hat, all of which were comedies, rappers have either beat up people, come from the mean streets or hustled to get ahead all while taking a break to rhyme for a scene or two. Rappin' contains none of this. Instead, it's an unintentional comedy about an ex-con gettting out of jail and becoming a rhyming Robin Hood. That says it all and should be the end of this but much like the movie being mentioned, it goes on and on.

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

One Hit Wonder Or One Hit Blunder

Today's Subject: "The Rain" by Oran "Juice" Jones

This is how people nicknamed "Juice" handle their women. They don't allegedly kill them, they write R&B/Pop songs about them and bust them for their infidelity at the end through stalking, hot chocolate and telling them that they're "cold busted."