Sunday, February 22, 2009

Norm MacDonald -- still on top of his game.

A couple of weeks back, I had the honor of seeing Norm MacDonald perform live at Cobbs Comedy Club in San Francisco, where he absolutely killed. My all time favorite guest Late Night with Conan O'Brian, I kept my fingers crossed that he would be invited on one of the final episodes. I lucked out.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

A Half Dozen Listworthy Movies . . . finally.

I've decided to slowly wean myself off of Cosby show reruns and spend more time watching new movies. I've really failed to keep up the last few years, so I've got quite a lot of catching up to do. Here's a start.

The Wrestler (2008)
Chop Shop (2008)
The King of Kong (2007)
Man on Wire (2008)
Milk (2008)
Persepolis (2008)

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Dan Auerbach - Keep it Hid (2009)

A (totally unexpected) solo album was released by Dan Auerbach (of Black Keys fame) a few days back. This was my best birthday present (except for the NetFlix subscription I received).

I beg you -- disregard everything you read about this album from Pitchfork. Much like the way Rolling Stone crushed Zeppelin and Cream for being one-trick ponies, Pitchfork says that Auerbach doesn't offer much new material. Well, I don't know what album they were listening to. Keep it Hid is not nearly as raw as vintage Black Keys. A lot of these songs are much slower and feature much less frenetic guitar work. The vocals are constrained and melodic. It shifts away from the psychadelic, rythmic riffs of Junior Kimbrough to the territory of Creedence Clearwater Revival.

You can listen to the entire album here.

Auerbach is playing at Mimbos in San Francisco on 3/13/09 for 20 bucks. Here's a recent live performance on Conan O'Brian:

Monday, February 09, 2009

Freshly Cut: New Music . . . finally.

  1. Bon Iver - For Emma, Forever Ago (2008)
  2. Bon Iver - Blood Bank EP (2009)
  3. Amon Tobin - Out From Out Where (2002)
  4. Amon Tobin - Permutation (1998)
  5. Franz Ferdinand - Tonight: Franz Ferdinand (2009)
  6. Animal Collective - Strawberry Jam (2009)
  7. Andrew Bird - Noble Beast (2009)
  8. Iron & Wine - The Shephard's Dog (2007)
  9. Brendan Canning - Something For All of Us (2008)
  10. Kevin Drew - Spirit If ... (2007)
  11. Cut Copy - Bright Like Neon Love (2006)
  12. Glen Hansard & Marketa Irglova - Once OMPST (2007)
  13. M83 - Saturdays = Youth (2008)
  14. M83 - Dead Cities, Red Seas & Lost Ghosts (2003)
  15. The Anomoanon - Asleep Many Years in the Wood (2002)
  16. The Anomoanon - Joji (2004)
  17. TV on the Radio - Dear Science (2008)
  18. Amos Lee - Last Days at the Lodge (2008)
  19. Santogold - Santogold (2008)
  20. Jason Mraz - We Sing. We Dance. We Steal Things. (2008)

Sunday, February 01, 2009

Australian Open: Federer v. Nadal

If you didn't stay up last night (12:30am PST to 5:30am PST) to watch the Australian Open Men's Final, do yourself a favor and watch or record today's re-airing of this epic match between Rafael Nadal (1) and Roger Federer (2). This match (and the rivalry) ranks up there with any of the uber-classics between Sampras and Agassi. Virtually every single point played gave you glimpses of a level of play that I've never seen.

The tension throughout the match was unbelievable; I found myself holding my breath during many of these points. The awards ceremony, usually a bore, was also filled with drama and heartbreak.

One of the greatest tennis matches I've ever seen. Period.