Tuesday, December 16, 2003

Monday, December 08, 2003

Column

A to Z: Atlantic News Perspective #95 (Dec 8)
Disturbing the peaceful waters of Cape Breton, packing ammo and lunch to school and a case of holiday turkey poisoning.
By: Iain K. MacLeod

Monday, December 01, 2003

Column

A to Z: Atlantic News Perspective #94 (Dec 1)
5,700 dead deer, $50,000 in stolen banknotes and a limited edition from 1908.
By: Iain K. MacLeod

Music

Here are my contributions to The Coast's CD guide:

Belle & Sebastian, Dear Catastrophe Waitress (Rough Trade)
The inherent charm of Belle & Sebastian has not been destroyed by Trevor Horn�s (who has also twiddled the knobs for ABC and Yes) production. This consistent collection of teenage symphonies may appear a little more polished than traditional expectations can handle, but it will reward the patient and continue to grow on you like patina on copper.

Manitoba, Up In Flames (Domino/Leaf)
Dan Snaith was has taken his laptop back in time and recorded a ramshackle masterpiece. This producer of intelligent dance music creates an oddly acoustic, often whimsical sound that easily contrasts the with ProTools psychedelia of groups like the Chemical Brothers. It is the modern-day soundtrack to Hinterland Who�s Who.

The Minus 5, Down With Wilco (Yep Roc)
This CD spent months in record label limbo and dismayed punch-drunk Wilco fans who expected the second coming of Yankee Hotel Foxtrot. In reality, Young Fresh Fellow Scott McCaughey orchestrated a tightly woven, expertly conceived vintage pop transmission. Keyboards, harmonies and quirky tunes all make you wish radio didn�t suck so much.

The New Pornographers, Electric Version (Mint)
If you applied the Atkins Diet to music, you would have to cut out the New Pornographers. The Vancouver band�s sophomore effort comes across like a real band without losing the unique vocal stylings of Carl Newman, Dan Bejar and Neko Case. Still sugary, but much more evenly granulated.

Outkast, Speakerboxxx/The Love Below (Arista)
Big Boi delivers the cohesion while Andre 3000 pushes the envelope and demands sugar from his neighbour. Speakerboxxx carries on the Southern- playalisticadillacmuzik tradition that began a decade ago while The Love Below is the libido of the duo. Despite the ominous slash dividing these two discs, it is still Outkast from the outset.

Pernice Brothers, Yours, Mine & Ours (Ashmont)
Joe Pernice has built a perfect indie pop palace high atop the Americana of the Scud Mountain Boys. From the fuzzy jangle of �One Foot in the Grave� to the Britpop of �Sometimes I Remember,� it is a joy to unravel the long and winding influences on the group�s scorching third release.

Damien Rice, O (Vector)
Floating above the typical singer-songwriter pack, Rice writes songs so familiar you will think they are covers and vow to track down the originals. He claimed this year�s Short List music prize and his minimal acoustic accompaniment on these 10 home recordings will speak to your inner (or outer) wuss.

Now, since that list went to print, all I can say is that I have listened the shit out of the new Shins CD Shutes Too Narrow and realized I am not ready to make a top ten list...yet. But, here are some of the CDs that appeared on The Coast list that do get my seal of approval ("Worth It"), are just OK ("Whatever") or I have yet to hear myself ("Wishlist"):

Worth It:
Brendan Benson, Laplaco (V2) note: actually a 2002 release
Broken Social Scene, You Forgot it in People (Paper Bag)
Buck 65, Talkin� Honky Blues (Warner)
Eels, Shootenanny! (DreamWorks)
Grandaddy, Sumday (V2)
Joel Plaskett Emergency, Truthfully Truthfully (Maple)
Radiohead, Hail to the Thief (EMI)
The White Stripes, Elephant (V2)
Yeah Yeah Yeahs, Fever To Tell (Interscope)

Whatever:
Ryan Adams, Love Is Hell, Part 1 (Lost Highway)
Ryan Adams, Rock N Roll (Lost Highway)
Kings of Leon, Youth and Young Manhood (BMG)
Stephen Malkmus, Pig Lib (Matador)
Sam Roberts, We Were Born in a Flame (Maple)
The Strokes, Room on Fire (BMG)
Super Friendz, Love Energy (Outside)
Super Furry Animals, Phantom Power (Sony)

Wishlist:
Basement Jaxx, Kish Kash (XL)
The Constantines, Shine a Light (Three Gut)
The Darkness, Permission to Land (Atlantic)
Jon Epworth, mm/dd/yy (Anti-Antenna)
The Finger, We Are Fuck You/Punk�s Dead Let�s Fuck (One Little Indian)
Fountains of Wayne, Welcome Interstate Managers (S-Curve/Virgin)
Guided By Voices, Hardcore UFOs: Revelations, Epiphanies and Fast Food in the Western Hemisphere (Matador)
The Hidden Cameras, The Smell of Our Own (Outside)
Damien Jurado, Where Shall You Take Me? (Secretly Canadian)
Stars, Heart (Paper Bag)
The Thrills, So Much for the City (Virgin)

Tuesday, November 25, 2003

Music

Ween to release limited edition All Request Live CD containing "songs that we have never performed before or since" this x-mas.

Update: Here is the track listing:

1) Happy Colored Marbles
2) The Stallion Part 1
3) The Stallion Part 2
4) The Stallion Part 3
5) The Stallion Part 4
6) The Stallion Part 5
7) Demon Sweat
8) Cover it with Gas and Set it on Fire
9) Awesome Sound
10) Cold Blows the Wind
11) Pollo Asado
12) Reggaejunkiejew
13) Tried and True
14) Mononucleosis
15) Stay Forever
16) Where'd the Cheese Go?
bonus track: webcam footage of "Stallion Part 3" in mpeg format

Monday, November 24, 2003

Monday, November 17, 2003

Wednesday, November 12, 2003

Word

"Playlistism...is discrimination based not on race, sex or religion, but on someone's terrible taste in music, as revealed by their iTunes music library." from Wired News

Quote

"If Bush said the earth was flat, the mainstream media would have stories with the headline: "Shape of the Earth � Views Differ." - NY Times columnist Paul Krugman (AlterNet)

Thursday, November 06, 2003

Don't Blame Hockey

Brazen brats' ages shock cop | Halifax Herald

Excerpt: Group of boys aged 12 to 14 allegedly assault 7 people with hockey sticks...

"Light of day is irrelevant to these kids," Const. Wyatt said. "They're brazen and they have no feeling of consequences, no sense of reasoning."

He blames that in part on video games. He said kids are incessantly bombarded with graphic images of violence and are rewarded for killing people.

Kaufman

LACUNA Inc. (explanation)

Tuesday, November 04, 2003

Thursday, October 30, 2003

TV

Hmm...this sounds interesting: Arrested Development premieres Sunday, November 2 on Fox and features Jason Bateman, Michael Cera, Jessica Walter, Will Arnett, Tony Hale, Portia de Rossi, David Cross and Alia Shawkat.

Music

elliott : smith -> audio

Tuesday, October 28, 2003

Column

A to Z: Atlantic News Perspective #89 (Oct 27)
The potential province of Cape Breton, Bubbles beats the competition and justice in the cat case.
By: Iain K. MacLeod

Wednesday, October 15, 2003

Monday, September 29, 2003

News

"Staff of the Canadian Hurricane Centre in Halifax had to evacuate as high winds caused the building to sway and windows to vibrate." - CBC News on Hurricane Juan

Monday, August 25, 2003

Column

A to Z: Atlantic News Perspective #80 (Aug 25)
The office of African Nova Scotian Affairs opens, exploring Labrador's uranium deposits and Stompin' Tom closes the school house.
By: Iain K. MacLeod

Sunday, August 17, 2003

Web

Speaking of math, Google is a calculator.

The Mathematics of Marriage

Wife's equation: w(t+1)=a+r1*w(t)+ihw[h(t)]

w= wife, h= husband, t= time a= a constant representing the wife's state of mind when she is not with her husband. r1*w(t)= represents how easy it is to change her state of mind when she is in conversation with her husband. ihw= "influence function" -- a measure of the influence that a husband's remarks have on his wife. h(t)= the husband's "score" during their 15-minute conversation. w(t+1)=how the wife has reacted to her husband's conversation -- the higher the number then the greater the likelihood of divorce

Husband's equation: H(t+1)=b+r2*h(t)+iwh[w(t)]

b= a constant representing the husband's state of mind when he is not with his wife. r2*w(t)= represents how easy it is for him to change his state of mind when he is in conversation with his wife. iwh= "influence function" -- a measure of the influence that a wife's remarks have on her husband. w(t)= the wife's score during their 15-minute conversation. H(t+1)= how the husband has reacted to his wife's conversation -- the higher the number then the greater the likelihood of divorce

[from the National Post]

Saturday, August 16, 2003

Music

Sure Thing: Dimitri from Paris (Sunday at Velvet Olive)

The All Music Guide calls the sounds of Dimitri from Paris "ironic lounge, spiked with shots of electronic house." Rolling Stone said he "creates a universe that is as goofily coherent as it is infectious." Radio France Internationale describes it as "eclectic fusion of house beats and smooth French easy-listening sounds." Pitchfork Media said he "does kitsch better than most," but then went and confused him with DJ Dmitry from the one-hit wonders Deee-Lite. Identity crisis aside, this Turkish DJ honed his craft on the radio in France by pairing trendy beats with French singers like Julien Clerc, Etienne Daho and Richard Gotainer. Dimitri also crafted luscious soundtracks to fashion shows on the runways of Paris. His debut record, Sacre Bleu, was released in 1996 (1998 in North America) and crowned album of the year by MixMag. As a re-mixer, he was reworked tracks by Pizzicato Five, New Order and Bjsrk. With one foot in the boudoir and the one hand on the mixer, his latest achievements include a pair of Hefner-approved mix compilations entitled A Night at the Playboy Mansion in 2000 (part of the Respect is Burning series on Astralwerks) and the double CD After the Playboy Mansion, released last year. Anyway you spin it, the swinging sounds and snappy style of this acclaimed international playboy will be hitting Halifax's Velvet Olive this weekend. Expect to hear DFP's fresh French twist on dance music with a high probability of grooving and ample chances to chill. �Iain K. MacLeod (The Coast | Volume 11 Number 11)

E-list

For handy e-updates, join Yahoo! Groups : boostventilator.

Music

Solid Steel presents The Herbaliser: Herbal Blend

Film

Bubba Ho-Tep Trailer

Tech

"I think Macs threaten the livelihood of IT staffs. If you recommend purchasing a computer that requires only half the support of the machine it is replacing, aren't you putting your job in danger?" - Robert X. Cringely (I, Cringely)

Wednesday, August 06, 2003

Quote

"Our music generally appeals to children and retarded people," - Aaron Freeman a.k.a. Gene Ween (The Onion A.V. Club)

Tuesday, August 05, 2003

Column

A to Z: Atlantic News Perspective #77 (Aug 4)
A convicted candidate, a bong and a pool of beer.
By: Iain K. MacLeod

Music

"The record was designed so that if someone were to walk in the room and heard it playing at ANY volume they should ask you �what the hell are you listening to?��and then walk out. Ween doesn�t necessarily think that this will be the record that breaks them through at radio. Actually they could care less anymore---instead they plan on raping their core audience of fans who will buy just about anything they release. This includes 4 cd live albums that were recorded on cassettes. If that plan were to fail, Ween instead plan on trying to steal fans from the burgeoning �jam-band� scene, where they are becoming increasingly popular. So far people have been fooled, but no one�s sure how much longer it will last, because historically, Ween have managed to alienate themselves from just about everyone including their most die-hard fans at one time or another." - Sanctuary Records Group

Monday, August 04, 2003

Quote

"Students are revolting all over the world. I don't know what they're revolting about, I just know they're revolting." - Bob Hope during the protests against the Vietnam War (National Post).

Anyone know how many small children Mr. Hope indirectly killed in his 100 years?

Monday, July 28, 2003

Monday, July 21, 2003

Column

A to Z: Atlantic News Perspective #75 (July 21)
PEI erased from the map, false positives in the NB West Nile case and dyslexic tax evasion in NS.
By: Iain K. MacLeod

Monday, July 14, 2003

Column

A to Z: Atlantic News Perspective #74 (July 14)
Summer campaigns, bad moonshine and a cross controversy.
By: Iain K. MacLeod

Monday, July 07, 2003

Wednesday, July 02, 2003

Tuesday, July 01, 2003

Quote

"For every 10,000 people who have a drum machine and run things through a filter box, there's an Aphex Twin." - Jon Brion (The Onion AV Club)

Monday, June 23, 2003

Monday, June 16, 2003

Friday, June 06, 2003

Film: "I had a colonoscopy once, and they let me watch it on TV. It was more entertaining than The Brown Bunny." - Roger Ebert on The Brown Bunny (National Post)

Monday, June 02, 2003

Column: A to Z: Atlantic News Perspective #68 (June 2)
Academics in the city, pigeons in the park and a car in the pizza parlor.
By: Iain K. MacLeod

Thursday, May 29, 2003

CD Review: Various Artists (Mixed by the X-ecutioners), Scratchology (Sequence)
The X-ecutioners crew (DJs Roc Raida, Rob Swift and Total Eclipse) successfully mix early influences in this brief turntable history lesson and welcome addition to the Sequence Records Series (which includes entries by Dan The Automator and Tony Touch). Even if you have some of the tracks already (like "The Adventures of Grandmaster Flash on the Wheels of Steel" and Herbie Hancock's "Rockit"), they are given new life alongside rarer tracks by DJ Cash Money & Marvelous Marvin, Davy DMX and Mixmaster Gee & The Turntable Orchestra. There are also several interesting interludes and a healthy dose of Roc Raida's ego ("I'll Kick Ya Ass"). - Iain K. MacLeod

from Mixed Messages | The Coast - Halifax's Weekly (May 29 - June 5, 2003)

TV: The return of Ken Finkelman's series The Newsroom

Sunday, May 25, 2003

Film: "I apologize to the financiers of the film, but I must assure you it was never my intention to make a pretentious film, a self-indulgent film, a useless film, an unengaging film." - Vincent Gallo on his L'Affaire Brown Bunny (Chicago Sun-Times)

Friday, May 23, 2003

Film: "In one of the funniest gags he conjures a monkey that emerges head first from the posterior of a thug who beat him up a couple of days earlier." - Stephen Holden on Bruce Almighty (New York Times).

Wednesday, May 14, 2003

Music: I just downsized Radiohead's Kid A and Amnesiac into one single CD (Kid Amnesiac?). While I do like both albums, I think there is a little experimental, self-indulgant filler on both that can easily be shaved. I actually think it was NME or Q that did this before, but I thought I would give it a crack seeing as the new CD is quickly approaching. The only real pattern is ordered them by feel and then alternated tracks from the two discs. Here is my track listing (subject to change without notice):

01. Like Spinning Plates
02. Morning Bell
03. Knives Out
04. The National Anthem
05. I Might Be Wrong
06. Idioteque
07. Packt Like Sardines in A Crushd Tin Box
08. Everything In It's Right Place
09. Dollars & Cents
10. Motion Picture Soundtrack (edited to 3:16 minutes)
11. Pyramid Song
12. Optimistic
13. You And Whose Army?
14. How To Disappear Completely
15. Morning Bell/Amnesiac

Total time: 67:22

Next up: The Beatle's White Album (inspired by this).

Tuesday, May 13, 2003

Friday, May 09, 2003

Quote: "Eminem was fine with me having the parody on my album but said he was afraid that a Weird Al video might detract from his legacy, that it would somehow make people take him less seriously as an important hip-hop artist." - Weird Al Yankovic (Launch)

Thursday, May 08, 2003

B-day: According to the IMDb, I share a birthday with: Enrique Iglesias, Greg Thomey, Don Rickles and Harry S. Truman.

Fred Savage turns 27 in a couple months. I bet Kevin Arnold would have had an interesting blog, what with the wacky misadventues of Paul Pfeiffer and Winnie Cooper.

Here are some celebrities that made it to 27: Kurt Cobain, Janis Joplin, Jimi Hendrix and Jim Morrison. Since I don't have the same access to mind altering substances of self-distruction and fire arms, chances are I will outlast them (in years...not necessarily culturally).

My Onion Horoscope: The stars don't think it would be fair to give you a new prediction until the one about finding happiness, love, or wealth comes true.

Monday, May 05, 2003

Sunday, May 04, 2003

Quote: "Canadian laws and regulations intended to protect Canadian citizens and landed immigrants from government intrusion sometimes limit the depth of investigations." - State Department report on global terrorism (Ottawa Citizen)

Woo-hoo! I guess the great white north is the true home of the free now!

Thursday, May 01, 2003

Tuesday, April 29, 2003

Wednesday, April 23, 2003

Tuesday, April 15, 2003

Monday, April 14, 2003

Sunday, April 13, 2003

Quote: "God to me is not Jesus Christ and religion, God to me is the higher power and the one that is the creator of all of us. I believe God is an alien, so my story's deep and it runs a little different than anything." - Vanilla Ice on Religion (Associated Press)
Link: David Cross interviews MC Honky | MTV

Monday, April 07, 2003

Monday, March 31, 2003

Column: A to Z: Atlantic News Perspective #59 (Mar 31)
Dream a Little Dream in NYC, Prince Edward Island swoosh spotting while Oscar comes to Nova Scotia.
By: Iain K. MacLeod

Saturday, March 08, 2003

Link: Colin Mochrie as Reporter Anthony St. George offers a public apology to America
Hmm, now this doesn't appear to be the same as the other apology to American's that is making the rounds...
Post: The Eels' Shootenanny CD | Metafilter
Quote: "We have no contacts with publicists -- nor do we want any. We don't get invited to movie premieres. We don't interview actors. We don't try to hang out with actresses." - William Bastone, co-founder and editor of TheSmokingGun.com (CBS MarketWatch)

Friday, March 07, 2003

Link: Rick Mercer's apology to the United States of America
Note: I just got off the phone with Rick Mercer's agent and just wanted to let you know this was not written by him and he doesn't even know where it came from. They just got back from Jamaica and found out about it and were actually waiting for someone to contact them (like angry Americans) from all the attention it is getting. He edits all of Rick's work and said that, while there are a few good lines, it has way too many adverbs. On the bright side, he said they did spell Rick's name right.

It might actually be from a bit that Colin Mochrie did for This Hour (remember that Rick left the show about 2 years ago).

Wednesday, February 26, 2003

Link: The Anti-Hit List | eye
Quote: "They are selling mind poison." - Bill O'Reilly on hip-hop (PAGE SIX)
Quote: "I don't even know what the fuck I'm doing. It's definitely more fucked up than any other record I've ever made. I don't know what the fuck it is." - Ryan Adams on his next CD "Life is Hell" (NME.COM)

Friday, February 21, 2003

Link: iPOP On the Scene� - Berlinale 2003
Programmer Andrew Murphy and Festival Director Lia Rinaldo from the Atlantic Film Festival in Nova Scotia, hanging out at the "Party Monster" party.

Monday, February 17, 2003

Thursday, February 06, 2003

Freelance: The Coast - Halifax's Weekly
Volume 10 Number 35 (#388)
February 6 - February 13, 2003

ON THE COVER> Universal Soul
These Halifax hip-hoppers will be all over the East Coast Music Awards. You heard it here first.
By Iain K. MacLeod

Monday, February 03, 2003

Monday, January 27, 2003

Monday, January 13, 2003

Wednesday, January 08, 2003

Freelance: The Coast - Halifax's Weekly
Volume 10 Number 30 (#383)
December 26 - January 9, 2002

ARTS> High class currency
Hip-hopper Buck 65 comes home for the holidays.
by Iain K. MacLeod

There was once a time when actually getting your hands on a Buck 65 release was a game of chance. Since the fall, Warner Music Canada has re-released five albums from his critically acclaimed back catalogue, including Language Arts, Vertex, Man Overboard, Synesthesia and Weirdo Magnet. On top of that, Buck released the highly anticipated Square, which has already been nominated for an East Coast Music Award for urban recording of the year. He was then promptly whisked off to make in-roads in Europe by way of an all-expenses-paid hip-hop sabbatical in Paris, France.

"I am back, basically here for the holidays and to finish up recording the new album with Charles Austin at Ultramagnetic," says Buck, born Richard Terfry, peering out from under his blue "Keep Nova Scotia Farming" ball cap. He has already made plans to return to Paris after his world tour in the new year, so his Marquee show December 27 will be your last chance to catch him for a while.

Terfry, a native of Mount Uniake, had never lived outside of Nova Scotia, so Paris was a bit of an eye-opener. "If there is a big city that is going to work for a country boy from Nova Scotia like me, maybe this is it," says Terfry, commenting on Paris's relatively slow pace and appreciation for the arts. With lots of time on his hands, he "cased" Paris by strolling the Left Bank, discovering weekly ragtime jazz jams and amateur readings. He found a really heavy record dealer who specialises in incredibly obscure European records and ingested copious amounts of cinema. Oh, and he also penned the first draft of a novel.

For more, pick up an issue of The Coast

Monday, January 06, 2003