Thursday, June 30, 2005

How Goes The Battle?
This - the George Vale-directed Stars video for Reunion - is currently #10 on MuchMoreMusic's countdown.

(Note instrument switching during long shots of stage.)

Wednesday, June 29, 2005

CTV put out a press release this evening exhaustively outlining their plans for Live 8 coverage. According to Microsoft Word, it weighs in at 2,930 words. The word "exclusive" is used seven times. The word "historic" is found six times. "Unprecedented," just twice. "Mulroney" appears six times. "Geldof" a mere three. The letters C, T and V appear consecutively together about 88 times.

They also include this handy index...

By The Numbers:
724 hotel room nights
over 150 people hired in addition to CTV staff
12 days to produce show
30 production assistants
23 cameras
2 gigantic screens
50' high Super TechnoCrane camera
30' long jib camera
3 digital mobile trucks
2 audio trucks
7 separate production crews
1 CableCam
18 different broadcast feeds coming into CTV Master Control
1-2 hours sleep per night for crew
17 hours of coverage
4 hosts
9 concerts
over 175 artists
140 countries tuning in
5.5 billion watching
85% of world's population can receive broadcast
3 seconds: length of time that passes before a child dies from extreme poverty

Dude, you're totally harshing on our positive energy!

(Note to stoners: Have we used the term "harshing" correctly here?)
Least. Indie. Press Release. Ever.

(Bonus pseudo-philosophical question: If all the indie artists in Canada get together and form an association, are any of them really independent anymore?)

Tuesday, June 28, 2005

Pick It
We should probably say something smart about Neil Young or Avril Lavigne right now, but we really just want to talk about Tom Cochrane. We were once no small fan of Tom Cochrane (are we inventing this or did he have a video during the Life Is A Highway era that featured him climbing the scaffolding at some concert like a Prairie-boy Iggy Pop?). Now, we simply delight in his inadvertent wisdom.

Here, Cochrane sounds off on Live 8. First, he tries to defend the line-up. Though, of course, he himself suggested they go younger.

Then, though, comes the real genius - as Cochrane is asked to explain the purpose of the proceedings.

It is not, he notes, about the money. And, he concedes, education of the masses is a problematic objective as well - "It's tougher obviously when you're talking to 30,000 people to get some of these points across." So... what then?

"Hopefully, we'll generate some positive energy."

Brilliant. Who can argue with that explanation? It's the equivalent of a beauty queen contestant wishing for world peace. It is unassailable. Entirely obscure and imcomprehensible, but so obviously worthy of pursuit. Who doesn't love positive energy? Who would dare speak out against positive energy? Clearly only a puppy-eating monster could seek anything other than positive energy.

As a general rule this should be used to explain away everything of questionable motive from now on (including, but not limited to: the Iraq War, Michael Jackson's bedroom habits and the new Oasis album).

Monday, June 27, 2005

And Another
The night before the night before, we saw The Eels for the first time. It was altogether wonderful. First, because the venue had, at their/his request we figure, brought in seats. But mostly because they/he incited in their/his fans the sort of fervour normally reserved Wal-Mart associate conferences. (See also: Tony Robbins.) Anyway. We had no idea. Nor now do we have any explanation.
Don't Rely On Rock N Roll
We’re still sort of surprised that anyone likes Broken Social Scene. Not that we don't think they should be annointed with the finest oils and paraded through the streets like conquering heroes (who have won for us our freedom from a king who banned ice cream). Because they should be. It’s just that we guess we’d always figured it was just the 36 of us who liked them.

Obviously that’s ridiculous. But if we had had to guess at the number of people who enjoy Broken Social Scene records, we probably would have said something like 73. Or 587. If you included the United States, Europe and the Pacific Rim, perhaps 7,385. If you expanded the search to cover all Broken Social Scene-related bands (Stars, Metric, Feist, Jason Collett, Apostle of Hustle, Most Serene Republic, Do Make Say Think and so forth), let’s say 12,981.

We were, in hindsight, a little off.

Adjusting for the guy we saw in a football jersey this afternoon (a Warren Sapp jersey, to be exact). And the woman breast-feeding. And the guys in various shirts endorsing Jesus. And the hippies (oh the hippies). And assuming few of them were there to see Triumph of Lethargy (and subtracting the one dude we encountered who was apparently a very close-minded, single-issue Modest Mouse fan)... We’d place that number closer to 3.5-million. Not necessarily 3.5-million. But closer to 3.5-million than we’d previously figured.

(Said band was quite good. But then you probably already knew we were going to say that. Rather large horn section. All three ladies. New stuff was easy to get behind. We may have mentioned this before, but someone once argued in our presence that all Broken Social Scene wants to do is throw the best reggae party ever. Or words to that effect. Makes a lot of sense.)

(Metric are probably going to be the next U2. And they have two nearly perfect songs. And have dozen qualities we generally look for in a band. And we like them. We just... don’t... quite... love them. For some reason. Sorry. It’s not you. It’s us. Or maybe bad timing.)

Sunday, June 26, 2005

So guess who bought a ticket to the big Island Show and then forgot to pick up their ticket on Saturday, thinking that at least one of the Ticketmaster Ticket Centres in Toronto had to be open on Sunday? And guess who just realized that, in fact, all Ticketmaster Ticket Centres rest on the seventh day (leaving said person sans ticket with but 13 and a half hours before showtime)?

No, go on, guess...

Any guidance or assistance in this matter will be cause for great hero worship.

Friday, June 24, 2005

And Now We Ponder
The first time we read this review (from the best magazine in America), we thought the last sentence was an endorsement. Now we're not so sure that was the intent. Though we're thinking we might ignore that development.

(Maybe we just don't know what a "female click-to-pick" is?)

Feist talks to the Montreal Mirror
Jason Collett talks to the Georgia Straight
Andrew Whiteman talks to the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review

Vaguely Related:
New Tangiers song here.

Not At All Related:
Amanda Walsh's upcoming movie These Girls - "a provocative coming-of-age story" starring Angel.
More Might. More Bite.
Dare we say it feels like years since we last talked about Nellie McKay?

Here's a new interview, written, it seems, in suburban Philadelphia. We are apparently now past the WTF Stage and beginning to talk about, like, music and stuff. Last three graphs are money:

“Sometimes, I wish I could make music for everybody. I do think some people respond to it, it has to strike a chord with them somehow,” she says. “What I would like is for it to be enjoyed more from the heart than from the head.”

And if she’s being true to herself, then she’s more likely to achieve that effect. It’s a quality she admires in her own influences — Bob Dylan, the Beatles, Ella Fitzgerald, Billie Holiday and Janis Joplin.

“It’s not that you can hear any of them in my music,” says McKay, “but there has to be a certain amount of HONESTY … I’d like to believe I have that. You feel a little egotistical saying it sometimes, but that’s certainly what I aspire to.”

Carl! J.D.! Get her!


Also of note: This, in which the Wyoming Seminary Performing Arts Institute name drops Nellie for some easy cred.

Thursday, June 23, 2005

Batting Sixth For The Coldplay Sincerity Skeptics All-Stars...
... and playing shortstop, Owen "Final Fantasy" Pallett:

"A Coldplay song is written with a specific idea of emotional manipulation. When you watch Patch Adams, you can hear the composer thinking, 'Time for another tear-jerking moment,' and you're groaning cuz it's another string swell."
(from his lovely interview with Miss Liss in this week's Now.)

See previously:
1. Jon Pareles
2. Sasha Frere-Jones
3. Hua Hsu
4. Brendan O'Neill
5. Adam Green

Update. Vaguely related: Sometimes snarkiness is preferable to sincerity

Wednesday, June 22, 2005

Ding Ding Ding
Michael Cohl fires back at Ben Rayner (at least indirectly): "These are our best artists. It's not all of them, but it's sure a substantial portion of them."

These were our best artists Michael.

To be fair, we sympathize with Mr. Cohl. His job is not to impress the 18-34 hipster crowd. Or provide a stage for the new generation of Canadian talent. His primary mission was to put together a boomer-pleasing, mainstream concert for cottage country and CTV. Look at the other line-ups on this mission, they ain't exactly cutting edge.

Just moments ago we were saying to Mr. Radwanski (in one of those real, face-to-face chats - believe it or not those still happen every once in awhile) that Live 8 is proof of one thing - that, at the moment, there are two completely different realities. There is the big established Canadian music industry and there is this big new indie thingy. And the two sides don't really talk much. In fact, they might not even have all that much in common. This weekend, one side will gather on island south of Toronto and have its little party. The next weekend, the other side will have its own party in Barrie.

Maybe it's always been so. But we'd wager that the two sides have never quite been so entrenched or so diametrically opposed or respectively healthy (depending on your point of view). And maybe, eventually, one side has to overtake the other. Or at least meet the other halfway. But maybe it might be fine enough for the two to peacefully, separately co-exist.

Perhaps Kevin Drew and Bryan Adams will one day meet, shake hands, hug and then walk onto the same stage and tear into a rousing medley of Cuts Like A Knife/Lover's Spit/Summer of '69. That'd be fun. But we ain't going to lose sleep waiting for it.

Anyway. Blah blah blah. Long ago when we were a music critic, we argued that what's happening with the kids these days is to be celebrated and embraced and enjoyed. Sparing us the usual cynicism and such. And maybe the ultimate celebration would culminate in a great takeover of Sir Bob's free, don't-call-it-a-charity-concert concert. But to be honest we're quite content to have some fun on the island this weekend and then hit Hillside in a few weeks. And if it never gets any quote-unquote bigger than that - if Denise Donlon and us never end up loving the same music - so be it. (Even if the world would be a better place if Torq Campbell was in charge.)

... All right. Enough of that. There's been way too much thinking going on here lately, eh? Next up, something frivolous and tawdry. Promise.

Update. Colby Cosh and The Final Bell chime in. Ben doesn't need us to defend him, but we will offer a couple counters to the latter's points: 1) No, we absolutely can't imagine any of the current crop of kids would steer clear of Live 8 to "maintain their cool or indie status." And 2) Motley Crue are, strangely perhaps (but then again, perhaps not), far more relevant than Our Lady Peace.
Ben Rayner goes for the throat of Live 8 organizers with verve and rage. Chromewaves, Wells, Nestruck, Matthew Good and Berman add their respective thoughts.

We were going to launch into a spirited discussion of how Live 8 proves, once and for all, that the old Canadian music establishment must get out of the way, but then we stumbled upon even sadder news... Ben Kerr is dead.

Tuesday, June 21, 2005

Lowered Expectations
No one of reasonable mind anticipated cutting-edge brilliance (nor should organizers have, for this sort of event, delivered as much), but what to make of this?

Yes, of course all our usual suspects (Bryan Adams, Barenaked Ladies, Blue Rodeo, etc) are there. Our national treasures (Cockburn, Cummings, Bachman, Lightfoot) are mostly accounted for. There's something French (Les Trois Accords). Something allegedly funny (Dan Aykroyd). And the folks in charge have been sure to prove they know what the kids are listening to these days (Simple Plan, Sam Roberts).

But Motley Crue?
Deep Purple?
Celine Dion (loving the poor, but not quite enough to leave her money pit in Vegas)?
The seemingly random inclusion of Tegan & Sara, while Billy Talent, the one band long "confirmed" for this big do, are now nowhere to be found?


(Sony just put out a press release promising that Our Lady Peace will debut songs from their new album at Live Aid. It's all for the poor African kids though. Promise.)

Monday, June 20, 2005

Wrap Yourself In Aural Wallpaper
Assuming this is not the latest in Nigerian inheritance scams, the following is rather fantastic.

(We shall try our darndest. And if anyone can offer particular assistance, they are invited to drop us a line.)

-----Original Message-----
From: Neiko Genchev
To: awherry
Sent: 6/20/2005 9:59 AM
Subject: A letter from Faber Publishers - Bulgaria

Dear Mr Wherry,

You might be surprised by this letter, but I' would ask you to read it before you delete it.

My name is Neiko Genchev, I am from Bulgaria, owner of "Faber" publishing house. I have a favour to ask of you - a strange o ne, you'd say, and you'll be right - and it is to pass o n to the singer Diana Krall a request from me. The reason to ask this from yourself is that I came across your interview with her, and then I saw your face in the National Post site. This is a face I like, and judging by the picture, we are about the same age, so I decided that you might help.

I'm in my forties (sorry for the judgement above, if you're younger), not of the kind of people who write to the celebrities, but this is a rather special occasion, for me, of course. The story is simple: in the beginning of this year I fell in love with a wonderful girl. It was not an easy or immediate affair (she is considerably younger than me), but we are very happy together now, and this is the first REAL love in my life, believe me. The thing that made the connection between us in the beginning was the music of Diana Krall.

I like this music very much, but Illiana (this is the name of my girl) is a passionate fan. So I thought that it would be a wonderful present for her birthday (25 th of July) if she received a card with a personal autograph from Diana Krall. And this is the supplication I'd ask you to pass o n to her, if this is possible, and if you would like to do it.

Please tell lady Krall that she has many friends and admirers here, that she is always welcome in Bulgaria, and that I and Illiana would like personally to invite her and her husband to visit us - we'll meet them as royalties (in Bulgarian 'Krall' means 'King'). The same applies to you - reading your blog, I could say that we could find a lot in common, and coming here, in Bulgaria (if you haven't already, of course), you would discover a wonderful country, and wonderful people. Bulgaria is famous with its history (over 1300 years) and nature (seaside and mountains). I live in Veliko Turnovo, o ne of the most picturesque cities in the world. You'll like it here, I'm sure.

Well, that would be all. Please do this for me if it's possible, you won't regret it. I simply don't have a way to reach Mrs Krall, but for you, as a famous musical journalist, that would be much easier. I don't seek a contact with her, o nly, if she agrees to send that autograph, I'll need a postal address (it might be your newspaper's for example), o n which to send in return some tokens for you and for her.

Sorry for bothering you with such a long letter. If you have ever loved somebody for real, you'll understand me.

Thank you very much.

Wishing you lots of sunshine


Saturday, June 18, 2005

You Can Go Your Own Way
Brendan O'Neill over at Salon:

"Indeed, listening to Coldplay's new album 'X&Y' is a lot like listening to a speech by Tony Blair: You're made to believe that you are hearing something Big and Important, but scratch the surface and there is very little heart or soul underneath. When he's giving a public speech, Blair's theatrical glottal stops and pained expressions say, 'Listen to me, I'm saying something profound!' as do the epic guitar riffs and Martin's earnest vocalizing on 'X&Y.' But both Blair's and Coldplay's performances feel too forced and formulaic to be taken seriously: Blair in public-speaking mode comes across as an actor trying too hard to please, while Martin and Co. seem to have written their latest Big Tunes by rote, conspiring to get the audience waving our lighters in the air whether we want to or not. As Harris says, Coldplay is now writing 'anthems for anthems' sake.'"

Er. Dare we say that makes four major pieces questioning their sincerity? Oh nevermind...

Also, there is this. From Noel Gallagher (via our colleague Adam Radwanski):

"I think Coldplay are at that point now where we were in '97, where they've kind of transcended themselves... I don't envy the position they're in, because what happens is you know before you sit down to write a note that all these songs are going to be played in football stadiums... so you have to justify playing to 80,000 people. So all these songs become really overblown and grandiose. And I think that's where Coldplay are at now. You listen to one song and you're exhausted by the end of it."

Write this down. The next Coldplay album can only go one of two ways:

1) The Back-To-What-Got-Us Here record, sounding more like Parachutes
2) The Reinventing/Killing-Our-Grandiose-Selves record, sounding more like Kid A

(Or maybe they'll pull a Third Way move a la the Foo and do a hard/soft double...)

Update. We haven't much time for Adam Green. A little too... something. But here we go again with the Coldplay and the sincer... err... lack of... err... oh nevermind. (via Maggie)

"The way I write songs, they know I'm just some kid. I'm not all that unusual, but the listener knows where it's coming from: personal experiences. I like my songs to be like a real person and have a personality. Someone who can't sing a song without any humour in it, they have a serious problem... Coldplay have a serious, unforgivable flaw. I can't allow Chris Martin to sing to me; I can't get into it. Music is like a love affair: you put on the headphones and get intimate. You can't get with someone who doesn't give it to you the way you like it."
Evan Newman, is that you?
Another 36 Hours
Dave Bidini takes Times readers on a tour of Toronto.

Thursday, June 16, 2005

Make A Sound
If the e-mail that arrived today is to be believed (and we have no reason to think otherwise), Leslie Feist will be taping a Bravo performance June 27, which would seem to mean she'll be around for this too, no? And then there's the July 1 gig at Harbourfront Centre, the full bill looking as follows:

Labatt Blue Canada Day Extravaganza (July 1)
Acid Brass Band (2 p.m. - CIBC Stage)
Taima (3:30 p..m. - CIBC Stage)
Apostle of Hustle (8 p.m. - CIBC Stage)
Feist (9:30 p.m. - CIBC Stage)
Spookey Ruben (11 p.m. - Brigantine Room)

(Here is the rest of Harbourfront's summer schedule.)

Wednesday, June 15, 2005

Like A Knife
This now seems inevitable. (Especially when Geldof is calling out the PM.) Which is great. We suppose.

If we had to wild guess the line-up we'd say something like: Avril Lavigne, Tragically Hip, Our Lady Peace, Jann Arden, Chantal Kreviazuk, Billy Talent, k-os and, maybe Feist (she is in town on July 1). Sam Roberts is apparently back in Canada by the end of the month, so he might be available (though he is already booked to play, er, Thorold on July 2). And if Michael Cohl is involved, it is probably safe to assume the Rolling Stones aren't too far behind.

Bryan Adams doesn't seem to make sense, he's in Pennsylvania on the big day. Matt Mays is in Newfoundland. Kathleen Edwards is playing the Canada Day show in Ottawa, so she should be around. Probably throw in a Sass Jordan or 54.40. Maybe some Rush (Geddy Lee seems to be around, and washing machines are pretty easy to find on short notice). Perhaps something French. And an allegedly amusing comedian to host.


(If the Thursday announcement isn't happening though, what are the chances they'd drop this news on a hot and hazy, lazy Friday? And, either way, aren't we cutting this a bit close?)

Update. The late CTV news had negotiations ongoing. Usual suspects mentioned, including Barenaked Ladies and Blue Rodeo. Venue was the Molson Amphitheatre (capacity: 16,000?).

And it doesn't sound like Feist (or any of her friends) are yet part of the plans.

Update II. Ooops. So Sir Bob took it upon himself to make the announcement. Now all we need are some bands and a venue. Which we'll apparently get on Tuesday.

Update III. CTV's eTalk Daily says Molson Park in Barrie. Which we didn't think existed anymore (but, hey, remember that time we all went to see Radiohead there?). CTV.ca says no Rolling Stones. Which is too bad. Er. Right?

Tuesday, June 14, 2005

Coldplay Sincerity Watch 2005
Hua Hsu at Slate:

"But there is something suspicious about overdramatizing the terms of those emotions... It's strange for a man as morally outspoken and well-meaning as Martin to defer to such generically pop instincts—to retreat to the ambiguous power of crying "Aaahhh." But it's almost stranger for him to offer a collection of songs infected with the same low spirits as 2000. The State of Coldplay has never been stronger and Martin, with his celebrity wife and new child, has cobbled together a pretty good life. If it's not the sadness of worldly affairs that gnaw at the aching heart of Coldplay's songs—and the lyrics suggest not—it can't possibly be his own life, either. Maybe it's those bastard shareholders. Worse yet: Maybe it's nothing at all."

What's that now? Three major critics to raise this point. As apparently empty an issue as this apparently is, it's apparently proving quite popular.

(Over at Metacritic, X&Y is pulling in a rather mediocre 68.)

Update. No. We only said it was "apparently proving quite popular." Really. And that's kind of our entire point.

To be honest, we're not interested in debating the Science of Proper Criticism. We simply think it relevant that three reasonably intelligent Proper Critics have now said the same thing - "I used to be able to believe Chris Martin. Or at least buy what he was selling. Now, for whatever reason, not so much." It proves nothing. But maybe it suggests that, while stupid, silly and below us, the issue of sincerity might be worth considering. Then flogging of course. But, first, considering.

Yes, sure. Sincerity is a flawed criteria for the Proper Critic to place upon music. We actually agree. Wholeheartedly. But a few smart people people - including one who was previously praised for his Proper Criticism - have now listened to the record in question and come back sighting it as a major concern they had. That kinda makes us think that maybe perhaps this could possibly be something more than a "non starter."

("The artist's intention is irrelevant" is a great thing to say. But a really hard thing to actually follow in practice. We might argue - not that we are, but not that we won't someday - that there is worth in looking at ahhrrt from both perspectives. Just a thought. Flog away. We're making like Mike and walking away.)

Next week's topic: "When Will We Wake-Up And Get Past The Ultimately Baseless Idea Of Love"
The Week After: "Your Mother."
And The Cow Jumped Over The Moon
Just back from D.C. Mike Tyson is an unfortunate man. Not blameless. But unfortunate.

Anyway. We missed the entirety of NXNE. Cooler people were there though. So go read them.

Others have already wished Three Gut farewell, but let us add our best wishes to Lisa et al. Sad news, but picking up where Stuart left off, we're kind of excited to see what comes next - where everyone goes and what more they create. Nobody wants to see one of the best teams fold, but it can only make the rest of the league more interesting.

(Guess who's been watching a lot of baseball lately?)

Friday, June 10, 2005

The Corrections
From yesterday's fish wrap:

"The Washington Times yesterday inadvertently published a photograph of D.C. City Administrator Robert C. Bobb (left) misidentified as the late soul singer Marvin Gaye (right)."

Wednesday, June 8, 2005

Safety Tips
Apologies in advance for this bit of back-and-forth blogging. Look away if you must. But our mind keeps coming back to Coldplay (they were on VH1's Storytellers tonight). And we wanted to bring the tussle back to our ballpark.

So we were talking about sincerity. And Carl said: "... it's not about sincerity - it's about whether a sentiment is worth expressing, it's about cliche, it's about crap. The problem isn't whether Coldplay is sincere or insincere, but whether what they purport to be sincere about has any value. To call them insincere is beside the point - and I think it also boils down to calling them inauthentic, and is subject to the same criticism that charge would be."

Fair enough. We don't necessarily agree. We kind of think there's something to be said for buying what a musician is selling. And we have a bit of thing about honesty. It's naive. And silly. But we think it's increasingly hard to come by.

Anyway. Then Carl pointed to this piece — SFJ's New Yorker review — as a better example of what to do when telling someone what you dislike about what they do. And he's right. It is a much more graceful knifing.

But. There is also this: "Only a churl could resist their best singles: 'Yellow,' a piercingly sincere bit of high-school poetry that is just as moving as they intended it to be..."

And then this: "Coldplay’s more modest charm doesn’t benefit from being supersized. Martin’s lyrics, once introspective mash notes, now sound like a thousand coffee-mug mottoes strung together, inspirational at first blush but completely devoid of substance."

Which is awful close, if we do say so ourself, to this: "... there is something to be said for sincerity in delivery, especially lyrically and I can see where some could argue that Martin's words often seem pulled from those 'inspirational' posters you might find on the walls of some executive's office."

So. Wouldn't it be fair to say that if you found us to be "cliche," "crap" and "completely devoid of substance"... you would think us... erm... insincere? Isn't part of SFJ's subtle, satisfying argument that Coldplay have gone from seemingly sincere to disposably, er, not?

That might not necessarily be a problem. Don't make us name all the musicians whose sincerity, or lack thereof, has no bearing or their genius, or lack thereof. But if you're all about singing the song of the plastic bag kid in American Beauty and really meaning it, isn't it important that people find you worthy of their belief?

Somebody's gotta feel this.

Tuesday, June 7, 2005

For Everyone
Just checked into a hotel in D.C., flipped on the TV and came across VH1. Seems that is where Bradford How ended up - in this case, hosting their countdown show. We think we already knew that. But that doesn't make the tears we shed any less real.

(He appears to have lost some weight. And fallen into The Gap.)

Monday, June 6, 2005

Keeping It Real
A group of American soldiers in Iraq has recorded a rap album about their experiences and is selling it through their website. (Graphic promo video is here. Preview the album here.) Somebody ask 50 if he feels kinda silly now.
We Are Often Compared To That Band, Both Favourably And Unfavourably
controller.controller tour diary here. New record, perhaps, in October.

Sunday, June 5, 2005

Chaos Corruption Courage And Glory II
Sure, maybe Michael Jackson is a bit odd. But at least it's not like Internet news sites are posting crude pictures of his penis, drawn by a child who claims to have seen it while Jackson molested him... err... oh.

(Chuck Klosterman on MJ's relative normalcy.)
Chaos Corruption Courage And Glory
Getting back to this.

Jon Pareles, First Captain aboard the S.S. Poopypants, pulls up alongside the Titanic and lets fly the dogs of war. The rabid dogs. With bees in their mouths. So that when they bark they shoot bees at you. Killer bees, even.

The abridged version:

"The most insufferable band of the decade!... [Martin] makes a sound somewhere between a yodel and a hiccup. And the lyrics can make me wish I didn't understand English!... a passive-aggressive blowhard, immoderately proud as he flaunts humility!... Coldplay follow-throughs are redundant; from the beginning, Coldplay has verged on self-parody!... so sorry for himself that there's hardly room to sympathize for him!... faultless to a fault, with instrumental tracks purged of any glimmer of human frailty!... looking over its shoulder at titanic predecessors like U2, Pink Floyd and the Beatles, pilfering freely from all of them!... hokum!"
That Goldie Sound
Feist gets a New York Times byline.
Cotton Candy
Katrina Onstad nominates Nardwuar for cbc.ca/arts' Alternative Walk of Fame and throws down. To wit:

"He has done more to promote the kind of Canadian music that doesn’t get promoted by corporate radio than almost anyone else in this country..."

Friday, June 3, 2005

It's All Gone To Porn
Zoilus with a nudie bum picture of the new Mrs. Jack White.

(A Google Image search provides plenty of nipples. But here are some actual words. And here she is on Britain's rich list.)

Update. White speaks. Exclusively to Canadian Press(?).

Update II. Jack, his ex and the wife in the new video for Blue Orchid.

Thursday, June 2, 2005

Never Met A Critic
We said this to someone at the Coldplay show last month, so we might as well say it here too - we thinks Chris, Will, Jonny and Guy sort of need to fail on this one. Too much smoke up the ass makes one bloated. All praise and no guff makes Coldplay a dull(er) band.

Don't get us wrong. We quite love this band. More than we have any right to, as one friend and fellow fan once put it (hi mark). But X&Y is not genius. Not close. And the less willing people are to say as much, the more likely the next one will be worse. And then we'll just to have to go through the backlash thing. Best to gently correct now, no?

Anyway. It's ugly out there, kids.

All of which is a long way of saying that we'd like to applaud the discretion of the respective critics from Now and Eye.

Update. Winnipeg Sun gives it 4.5 stars. To wit: "[I]mpeccably elegant works that approach the anthemic majesty of U2, mixed with haunting echoes of everyone from Kraftwerk and Radiohead to Prince and Pink Floyd" and yet, "these cuts are slightly smaller and more intimate." Sigh.

Wednesday, June 1, 2005

Still catching up on stuff. This is very nearly SFJ's Jerry Maguire Moment (a comparison we like to use often, if only because it reminds us of a time when Renee was still cute/human). It should be forwarded to lots of people.

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