Monday, January 31, 2011

Completely Conspicuous 161: You Are What You Is

Special guest Brian Salvatore joins me on the podcast as we discuss nutrition in America. Listen to the show in streaming audio or download it directly (right click and "save as").

Or you can listen to it here:



Topics:

- Check out Brian's podcast The Enthusiasts' Radio Hour

- Recorded before a live studio audience in Pompton Lakes, NJ

- Efforts to ban trans fats

- The Salvatores belong to a food co-op

- It's good to know where your food comes from

- McDonald's Instant Remorse

- Brian made enchilada lasagna last night, Jay had a Quarter Pounder with cheese

- Taco Bell: Less than 30% actual meat in tacos

- People should be able to choose to eat junk if they want

- Jay: We limit junk food for our kids

- Parents need to take responsibility for their kids' nutrition

- Jay watched a ton of TV as a kid

- You can't force people to eat right

- Having a busy schedule is no excuse to eat poorly

- Nutrition education is important

- Food assistance programs need funding

- Brian: Haven't noticed a difference in flavor at NYC restaurants since trans fat ban

- Tainted food outbreaks are biggest concerns

- Jay: In college, going off dining plan led to poor nutrition

- Food trucks were big hit in college

- Brian: Learned to cook for myself at a young age

- Government needs to step in to enforce child nutrition

- Once you're an adult, you know what's bad for you

- Bonehead of the Week

Music:

The Feelies - Should Be Gone

Drive-By Truckers - Everybody Needs Love

Mind Spiders - Don't Let Her Go

Completely Conspicuous is available through the iTunes podcast directory. Subscribe and write a review!

The show is sponsored by Eastbay/Footlocker.com. Use the following codes to get athletic gear from Nike, Adidas, Asics and more. AFCOMP15 will get you 10% off any order of $50 at Eastbay.com, AFCOMP20 will get you 15% off any order of $75 at Eastbay.com and AFCOMPFL will get you 10% off any order of $50 or more at Footlocker.com.

The Feelies song is on the forthcoming album Here Before on Bar/None Records. Download the song for free at Pitchfork.

The Drive-By Truckers song is on the forthcoming album Go-Go Boots on ATO Records. Download the song for free at Amazon.

The Mind Spiders song is on the band's self-titled album on Dirt Nap Records. Download the song for free at Altered Zones.

The opening and closing theme of Completely Conspicuous is "Theme to Big F'in Pants" by Jay Breitling. Find out more about Senor Breitling at his fine music blogs Clicky Clicky and Keeping Some Dark Secrets. Additional music used in the show is by Me and Boris the Bull, which is the brainchild of the mighty Mark Campbell. Thanks to Bob Durling for the album art; find out more about his photography at his blog. Voiceover work is courtesy of James Gralian.

Completely Conspicuous is a Tan God Production. Word.

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Tall Cool One

It can't be easy to be a rock legend, especially when you're approaching senior citizen territory. There's always the danger of tarnishing your image like an old boxer who didn't retire early enough and is now just a shadow of his former self. There are some, like Lemmy or the guys from Rush, who just keep on going with no appreciable decline in ability. And then there's Robert Plant, whose post-Led Zeppelin career has seen him branch out in several different, always interesting directions. The only direction he hasn't pursued is the most obvious, a Zep reunion. But judging by his 90-minute performance Tuesday night at a sold-out House of Blues in Boston, he's chosen the right path once again.

I'd only seen Plant live once before, in 1990 at Great Woods in Mansfield touring behind the Manic Nirvana album. Back then, he had a band of young bucks playing hard rock. This time around, Plant's sound is steeped in Americana, mixing in blues, country and gospel flavoring. Dubbed the Band of Joy (and touring the album of the same name), Plant's backing band featured former Boston folk singer Patty Griffin, guitarist Buddy Miller, instrumentalist Darrell Scott, bassist Byron House, and drummer Marco Giovino.

Plant opened with Zep's "Nobody's Fault But Mine," reimagined as a blues dirge. At age 62, he can't hit those ridiculously high notes that he did in the '70s and '80s, so wisely he sticks to a lower register that is just as compelling. His latest album reflects his love of American roots music, as did his prior album with Alison Krauss, but there's more bite to the new material. Songs like "Angel Dance" and "Satan Your Kingdom Must Come Down" may not have appealed to the many folks in attendance looking for Zep bombast, but they were immensely rewarding.

Plant also played the benevolent bandleader, giving Griffin, Miller and Scott the spotlight to sing lead on their own songs while he sang backup. But he didn't neglect the past, trotting out Zep classics like "Rock and Roll," "Gallows Pole," "Ramble On" and "Houses of the Holy," albeit in different interpretations. Plant also revisited his 1988 hit "Tall Cool One," giving it a rockabilly twist and omitting the rap and Zep samples of the original version.

It would have very easy for Plant to sign up for a Zeppelin reunion after the band played a tribute concert for Ahmet Ertegun in 2007. But he doesn't need the money and he's not interested in dwelling on the past. Plant was clearly enjoying himself Tuesday night, and so were those of us lucky enough to be there.

Monday, January 24, 2011

Completely Conspicuous 160: Cold as Ice

This week on the podcast, it's another installment of Driving With Kumar as I discuss life during winter. Listen to the show in streaming audio or download it directly (right click and "save as").

Or you can listen to it here:



The show notes...

Topics:

- Already more snow in Boston area than entire last winter

- Temps dropping into single digits to subzero

- Tough running weather

- People like to complain about winter

- Lack of daylight leads to depression

- Why do people choose to live in cold-weather climates?

- In Washington state, I dealt with the occasional sandstorm

- Extreme weather in Texas

- Seasonal Affect Disorder

- Bad drivers + snow = A mess

- Fall is the perfect season

- Local media drives snow hysteria

- Bonehead of the Week (HT: The Smoking Gun)

Music:

Buffalo Tom - Guilty Girls

Mike Watt - Arrow-Pierced-Egg-Man

Mogwai - San Pedro

Tapes 'N Tapes - Badaboom

Completely Conspicuous is available through the iTunes podcast directory. Subscribe and write a review!

The show is sponsored by Budget, the country's premier car rental service with 900 locations. Go to Budget.com/CompCon and save 10% off any reservation or $30 off a weekly rental.

The Buffalo Tom song is on the forthcoming album Skins on Scrawny Records. Download the song for free (in exchange for your e-mail address) at Spin.

The Mike Watt song is on the album Hyphenated-Man on clenchedwrench Records. Download the song for free at Stereogum.

The Mogwai song is on the album Hardcore Will Never Die, but You Will on Sub Pop. Download the song for free at Stereogum.

The Tapes 'N Tapes song is on the album Outside on Ibid Records. Download the song for free at KEXP.

The opening and closing theme of Completely Conspicuous is "Theme to Big F'in Pants" by Jay Breitling. Find out more about Senor Breitling at his fine music blogs Clicky Clicky and Keeping Some Dark Secrets. Additional music used in the show is by Me and Boris the Bull, which is the brainchild of the mighty Mark Campbell. Thanks to Bob Durling for the album art; find out more about his photography at his blog. Voiceover work is courtesy of James Gralian.

Completely Conspicuous is a Tan God Production. Word.

Friday, January 21, 2011

Mixology: Jumpstart Jukebox

Mixology is a recurring feature in which I take a look at one of the many mix tapes (or CDs) I made over the years. Some are better than others, but all of them are fun to revisit.

Jumpstart Jukebox (January 2008)

January can be a real killer of a month. It's dark, cold and miserable. There's not a whole hell of a lot to do except wait for it to be over. This doesn't change from year to year, but at least there's rock to get us through.

Despite January being pretty much a wasteland in terms of new releases, this mix contains all new stuff that had come out in the preceding few months. It was a heady time in these parts: At the end of January 2008, the Patriots were 18-0 and heading to the Super Bowl to face the Giants. I don't remember what happened after that, just like I don't remember what happened to the Pats last weekend. It's all a blank and it's gonna stay that way.

I had just begun training for the New Jersey Marathon, which remains my fastest race (3:43). The Leafs fired GM John Ferguson Jr. and optimism reigned supreme; alas, three years later, they still suck big time. The more things change...

Idle Hands - The Gutter Twins
Goodbye Daughters of the Revolution - The Black Crowes
Baltimore - Stephen Malkmus and the Jicks
(My Head)/R.I.P. Allegory - Times New Viking
Bamboo Banga - M.I.A.
Tell Me - Sharon Jones and the Dap-Kings
I Want Oblivion - Heavy Trash
Navy Nurse - The Fiery Furnaces
Bad Phone Call - Buffalo Tom
Two Daughters and a Beautiful Wife - Drive-By Truckers
Devastation - The Besnard Lakes
Angels - Black Mountain
(I Don't Need You to) Set Me Free - Grinderman
Tight Black Rubber - Black Francis
Skinny Love - Bon Iver
Society - Eddie Vedder
Wonderful Witches - Thurston Moore
Phantom Limb - The Shins
Conquest - White Stripes




Idle Hands:


Tight Black Rubber:

Monday, January 17, 2011

Completely Conspicuous 159: Pitch Perfect

Special guest Ric Dube joins me again on the podcast as we conclude our movie pitching extravaganza. Listen to the show in streaming audio or download it directly (right click and "save as").

Or you can listen to it here:



The show notes...

Topics:

- Check out Ric's podcast More Lost Time

- Dube's summer movie: "Camp Cruise Ship"

- Ric's an Andy Samberg fan

- Summer camp on a cruise ship; two businesses in big trouble

- Kumar: "Cell Block," it's "Memento" meets "Shawshank" meets "The Hangover"

- Dube: "Witness Revocation Program"

- James Franco, Emma Stone and Anne Hathaway would star

- Kumar: "Gilligan's Island" remake with troubled celebs

- Mel Gibson, Andy Dick and Charlie Sheen: "The Expendables" meets "Celebrity Rehab"

- Christian "Big Audio" Douglass makes a surprise appearance on the show

- Big Audio harasses Dube's neighbors

- Dube: "Freaky Festival," a body switching comedy

- Movie exec and screenwriter switch bodies

- Kumar: "The Claus Conundrum" with Tim Allen as department store Santa who realizes he's an assassin

- Christian makes us watch a Logitech commercial

- Bonehead of the Week

Music:

And You Will Know Us by the Trail of Dead - Weight of the Sun

Wire - Adapt

Completely Conspicuous is available through the iTunes podcast directory. Subscribe and write a review!

The show is sponsored by Eastbay/Footlocker.com. Use the following codes to get athletic gear from Nike, Adidas, Asics and more. AFCOMP15 will get you 10% off any order of $50 at Eastbay.com, AFCOMP20 will get you 15% off any order of $75 at Eastbay.com and AFCOMPFL will get you 10% off any order of $50 or more at Footlocker.com.

The And You Will Know Us by the Trail of Dead song is on the forthcoming album Tao of the Dead on Richter Scale Records. Download the song for free at RCRDLBL.

The Wire song is on the album Red Barked Tree on Pink Flag Records. Download the song for free at RCRDLBL.

The opening and closing theme of Completely Conspicuous is "Theme to Big F'in Pants" by Jay Breitling. Find out more about Senor Breitling at his fine music blogs Clicky Clicky and Keeping Some Dark Secrets. Additional music used in the show is by Me and Boris the Bull, which is the brainchild of the mighty Mark Campbell. Thanks to Bob Durling for the album art; find out more about his photography at his blog. Voiceover work is courtesy of James Gralian.

Completely Conspicuous is a Tan God Production. Word.

Rank and File

We love making lists. Lists of the most powerful, best dressed, best left-handed shotputters...somebody's always making a list about something. Whenever I make a list, it's not a simple endeavor. I've done a year-end list of best albums and it takes a lot of time and deliberation.

Even tougher was the set of best-of-the-decade lists I did for the podcast in late '09. But I'd have to say the most difficult list I've worked on is the one I just compiled on my top 100 songs of all time.

Normally, when somebody asks me the incredibly broad question of "What are your favorite songs?", I can't even provide an answer because there's so much involved. But at the behest of Dan Paquette's Music Obsession, a Facebook page I belong to, I spent the last month or so honing a list of the top 100 songs. Dan basically has folks rank their favorite bands, favorite albums, favorite songs, etc., and then does a running recount of the results. Although I don't think he ever just provides people's lists because that would probably blow up Facebook. For the top songs thing, he's going to compile the lists and make a top 1000. Should be interesting.

So for my list, I had to draw up some guidelines. I decided to keep things interesting by limiting two selections per band, which made it tough when you've got bands like Zeppelin, the Beatles, the Who, the Clash, etc., who have many more than two great songs. I also didn't necessarily care about chart success, and I accepted the fact that many great songs would be left off. It had to be songs that I absolutely loved, although I did weigh in the societal impact of songs as well. There were going to be many songs from 60s, 70s and 80s, just by virtue of having more time to sink in, and for my purposes, it was a reflection of what I've listened to over the years.

I started off by just jotting down favorite songs by certain artists, not in any order. Then I let the list sit for a few days and went back to it, and added more. Ultimately I found that pretty much every time I pick it up, the list could be completely different. As the deadline approached, I got to the real hard part: numbering the songs. After I did that, I printed out the list I had and almost immediately came up with another 60 or so songs from artists I had forgotten or overlooked. So then I replaced many of the songs I had picked with new ones. Finally, I just had to say that I was done, because I know I could go in and add or change out a bunch of the selections, and I even did that as I was typing up the final list.

I'm guessing it's going to Dan a while to compile his top 1000 list because the deadline was today, but I'm going to share my list here. I'm sure you may vehemently disagree with some of my choices or not even have heard of some of them. Feel free to let me know what you think in the comments. It's really just what I like as the top 100. And of course, I could have done a list with many more songs by certain artists, but I chose not to do that.

My choice for the top slot was The Who's "Won't Get Fooled Again." It used to be Zep's "Stairway to Heaven" but I almost can't listen to that song anymore because it has been played so much on rock radio over the last 40 years. And certainly the Who song has been overplayed, and not just on radio (thank you, CSI: Miami), but it remains as powerful now as when it was released. It's a song with political overtones, and when the Who played it at the first 9/11 benefit show, it was intense.

As for the rest of the list, well, here it is:

2. Kashmir - Led Zeppelin
3. A Day in the Life - The Beatles
4. Sympathy for the Devil - Rolling Stones
5. You Really Got Me - The Kinks
6. What's Going On - Marvin Gaye
7. Talking Loud and Saying Nothing - James Brown
8. Bohemian Rhapsody - Queen
9. Wish You Were Here - Pink Floyd
10. Search and Destroy - Iggy and the Stooges
11. Smells Like Teen Spirit - Nirvana
12. London Calling - The Clash
13. God Save the Queen - The Sex Pistols
14. Kick Out the Jams - MC5
15. Golden Slumbers/Carry That Weight/The End - The Beatles
16. Purple Rain - Prince and the Revolution
17. How Soon is Now? - The Smiths
18. Radio Radio - Elvis Costello and the Attractions
19. Runnin' with the Devil - Van Halen
20. Hey Hey, My My - Neil Young
21. Surrender - Cheap Trick
22. It's a Long Way to the Top (If You Wanna Rock and Roll) - AC/DC
23. Thank You (Falettinme Be Mice Elf Agin) - Sly and the Family Stone
24. Voodoo Child (Slight Return) - Jimi Hendrix Experience
25. War Pigs - Black Sabbath
26. Waiting for the Man - Velvet Underground
27. Love Reign O'er Me - The Who
28. So. Central Rain (I'm Sorry) - R.E.M.
29. Don't Want to Know If You Are Lonely - Husker Du
30. Bad - U2
31. Bastards of Youth - The Replacements
32. Back in Black - AC/DC
33. Comfortably Numb - Pink Floyd
34. Dancing in the Moonlight - Thin Lizzy
35. Ace of Spades - Motorhead
36. Can't You Hear Me Knocking? - Rolling Stones
37. Precious - The Pretenders
38. Crosseyed and Painless - Talking Heads
39. In Between Days - The Cure
40. Over the Hills and Far Away - Led Zeppelin
41. Unchained - Van Halen
42. Masters of War - Bob Dylan
43. (Don't Fear) The Reaper - Blue Oyster Cult
44. Ziggy Stardust - David Bowie
45. Stay With Me - Faces
46. We Want the Airwaves - The Ramones
47. Toys in the Attic - Aerosmith
48. Flashlight - Parliament Funkadelic
49. Lola - The Kinks
50. Sonic Reducer - The Dead Boys
51. That's When I Reach for My Revolver - Mission of Burma
52. Highway Star - Deep Purple
53. Personality Crisis - New York Dolls
54. Let's Stay Together - Al Green
55. Candy-O - The Cars
56. Thirteen - Big Star
57. Tom Sawyer - Rush
58. Rock and Roll All Nite - KISS
59. Fight the Power - Public Enemy
60. Living for the City - Stevie Wonder
61. You've Got Another Thing Comin' - Judas Priest
62. Debaser - The Pixies
63. Mountain Song - Jane's Addiction
64. Theme from Shaft - Isaac Hayes
65. Dear God - XTC
66. 2 Minutes to Midnight - Iron Maiden
67. Roundabout - Yes
68. Master of Puppets - Metallica
69. The Lamb Lies Down on Broadway - Genesis
70. Loser - Beck
71. I'm the Man - Joe Jackson
72. Black Friday - Steely Dan
73. New Orleans is Sinking - The Tragically Hip
74. I Am One - Smashing Pumpkins
75. Coax Me - Sloan
76. So Lonely - The Police
77. The Logical Song - Supertramp
78. I'm an Adult Now - The Pursuit of Happiness
79. Dead Leaves and the Dirty Ground - White Stripes
80. Divine Intervention - Matthew Sweet
81. Summer Babe - Pavement
82. Outshined - Soundgarden
83. Leash - Pearl Jam
84. Solsbury Hill - Peter Gabriel
85. Tempted - Squeeze
86. Everlong - Foo Fighters
87. Song for the Dead - Queens of the Stone Age
88. Knock Me Down - Red Hot Chili Peppers
89. Welcome to the Jungle - Guns N' Roses
90. Holy Diver - Dio
91. Karma Police - Radiohead
92. Love is the Drug - Roxy Music
93. What Do I Get? - Buzzcocks
94. Touch Me I'm Sick - Mudhoney
95. Unsung - Helmet
96. Head Like a Hole - Nine Inch Nails
97. Evil Eye - Fu Manchu
98. Darkness on the Edge of Town - Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band
99. Rise - Public Image Limited
100. High n' Dry (Saturday Night) - Def Leppard

Phew! So that's it. I could sit down right now and come up with 100 different songs that would adequately fit the criteria I set out, but this is my list and I'm sticking to it. For now.

Numero uno:

Pictures of Matchstick Men

The concept of bands playing entire albums in concert has been around for long enough now that it's almost becoming a cliche. I first encountered it in 1997, when Cheap Trick did a three-night stint at the Paradise, each night playing one of their first three albums in its entirety. I saw them on the second night playing In Color and it was pretty great, although there was some grumbling because certain hits weren't played in the encore. Since then, countless acts have trotted out classic albums in concert, from the Pixies to Rush to Springsteen. Last night, David Lowery brought both his bands, Camper Van Beethoven and Cracker, to the Middle East downstairs in Cambridge to play full albums: For CVB, it was 1989's Key Lime Pie while Cracker played its biggest success, 1993's Kerosene Hat.

While Lowery is the driving force behind both bands, they're still strikingly different. CVB came of age in the mid-80s DIY punk scene, melding punk, ska, polka, country and anything else they could think of into a quirky and entertaining sound. Cracker came aboutin the early '90s after CVB split up and was more of a straightahead rock affair, finding success on MTV and with alternative and AOR rock radio. For the last five years, Lowery has been doing short winter tours with the reunited CVB and his ongoing Cracker concern.

Funny thing is, Key Lime Pie is the one CVB album I don't own. I always meant to pick it up but just never did. I knew a few songs from it, but was a tad disappointed they weren't doing Telephone Landslide Victory instead. The band came out and violinist Jonathan Segel said, "You know we're playing Key Lime Pie, right?" Bassist Victor Krummenacher added, "Actually, we're playing Topographic Oceans top to bottom."

Alas, there were no Yes covers, but the band launched into Key Lime Pie with vigor and little stage patter. Lowery had a laptop in front of him that he would look at between songs; not sure if he was boning up on lyrics or chord changes but at one point he noted that he had his Gmail up and someone was trying to chat with him. Immediately, songs like "Jack Ruby," (I Was Born in a) Laundromat" and "When I Win the Lottery" hit home with the near soldout club. The band mixed up the instrumentation, going with a Skynyrd-esque four-guitar attack on a few songs, incorporating pedal steel on a few others, and of course, Segel's violin. Lowery introduced a pre-recorded accordion part by noting, "This is the computer," and then launching into the song once it was over.

There were a few lulls in the middle of the set, but the cover of Status Quo's "Pictures of Matchstick Men" (which was a minor hit for CVB) got the older-skewing crowd jumping around again. After wrapping up the album, CVB played two of its better-known hits, 1988's "Eye of Fatima Parts 1 and 2" and "Take the Skinheads Bowling" from the band's debut.

Cracker came out as a five-piece, sharing drummer Frank Furnaro with CVB, and kicked into the band's biggest hit, "Low," the leadoff track from Kerosene Hat. Cracker is as much a showcase for Lowery's sarcastic lyrics and vocals as it is for guitarist Johnny Hickman's hot guitar licks, and the crowd noticeably picked up its enthusiasm. Uptempo rockers like "Get Off This" and "Let's Go for a Ride" resonated well, as did the cover of the Grateful Dead's "Loser," but it may have been the cowpunk "hidden track" "Euro Trash Girl" late in the set that had everyone singing along.

As the band wrapped up the album, CVBers Segel, Krummenacher and Greg Lisher came out and swapped instruments with their Cracker counterparts in mid-song to launch into an epic cover of Pink Floyd's space-rock jam "Interstellar Overdrive" (which CVB covered on a previous album) that swelled up to around 15 minutes. For the encore, CVB and Hickman returned to play "Sad Lover's Waltz" from CVB's II and III album.

It was a fun night that convinced me to pick up Key Lime Pie for once and for all. Lowery already has a new solo album about to be released, so that's something else to look forward to. And it distracted many in attendance from the disastrous Patriots loss to the Jets, so it was a therapeutic event as well.

Matchstick Men:



Eurotrash:

Friday, January 14, 2011

Mixology: Lighten Up, Francis

Mixology is a recurring feature in which I take a look at one of the many mix tapes (or CDs) I made over the years. Some are better than others, but all of them are fun to revisit.

Lighten Up, Francis (April 2009)

Sometimes an old mix can really pick you up. Tuesday night, I had to go pick up my mom from the airport because her flight had been canceled due to the impending snowmageddon. It was 9:30 p.m. and I had been looking forward to a nice relaxing evening, but had to jump in the van and head to the airport.

I grabbed this mix randomly as I was running out the door, with no idea of what was on it because I never took the time to print out a track listing. One of the opening songs, Art Brut's "Alcoholics Unanimous," was my favorite song of that year. And it was a good year for music, indeed. It was nice to be greeted with one kickass song after another, all collected during April of '09.

Contrast this with last weekend, when we drove up to my mom's place. I didn't grab any CDs, opting instead to just listen to the radio. Problem is, between commercials and crappy songs, I tend to do a lot of jumping around with the radio dial. This, of course, drives my wife nuts. But I have no patience for ads and crap anymore. Why do you think I started making mixes all those years ago?

Easy - Deer Tick
Angela - Jarvis Cocker
Alcoholics Unanimous - Art Brut
Son of a Gun - The Vaselines
Watch This! - Dananananaykroyd
Prophets - A.C. Newman
Gauze - Red Red Meat
Vampire - The Pink Mountaintops
Idiot Heart - Sunset Rubdown
Black Hearted Love - PJ Harvey and John Parish
Halfmast - The Dears
Frozen in My Tracks - The Tragically Hip
I'm Sorry, Baby, but You Can't Stand in My Light Anymore - Bob Mould
Sacred Trickster - Sonic Youth
Fate to Fatal - The Breeders
I Want You to Know - Dinosaur Jr.
Divinations - Mastodon
Halcyon Days - And You Will Know Us by the Trail of Dead


Alcoholics:


Black Hearted:

Monday, January 10, 2011

Completely Conspicuous 158: Hammering Out the Beats

Part 2 of my podcast conversation with special guest Ric Dube as we pitch more movie ideas. Listen to the show in streaming audio or download it directly here (right click and "save as").

Or you can listen to it here:



Topics:

- Check out Ric's podcast More Lost Time

- Kumar: "Judge Fredd" with Rob Schneider and Jim Belushi

- Wacky case of mistaken judicial identity

- Blanking on Nancy Grace

- Dube's got Bieber Fever

- Dube: "Extra Sensory Reception"

- Cavity filling gives Bieber ability to read minds

- Tracing Kurt Russell's career path

- Echoes of "Teen Wolf"

- The classic '80s bully/a-hole archetype

- Recalling Dube's similar baseball movie pitch

- Kumar: "Time's Up," with Flavor Flav and Jennifer Lopez

- Capitalizing on reality show fame

- "When Justin Met Kelly"

- Tom Green starred in a movie

- Glorifying the unhealthy relationship

- Ric owns the fine Leno-Morita vehicle "Collision Course"

- Contemplating J. Lo

- Lamenting short-lived excellent TV shows

- Bonehead of the Week

Music:

Obits- You Gotta Lose

Best Coast - Boyfriend

Tommy Stinson - One Man Mutiny

Completely Conspicuous is available through the iTunes podcast directory. Subscribe and write a review!

The show is sponsored by Budget, the country's premier car rental service with 900 locations. Go to Budget.com/CompCon and save 10% off any reservation or $30 off a weekly rental.

The Obits song is on theforthcoming album Moody, Standard and Poor on Sub Pop. Download the song for free at Pitchfork.

The Best Coast song is on the album Crazy for You on Mexican Summer Records. Download the song for free at Stereogum.

The Tommy Stinson song was given away as a thank you to fans for helping him raise money to benefit relief efforts in Haiti. Download the song for free at Slicing Up Eyeballs.

The opening and closing theme of Completely Conspicuous is "Theme to Big F'in Pants" by Jay Breitling. Find out more about Senor Breitling at his fine music blogs Clicky Clicky and Keeping Some Dark Secrets. Additional music used in the show is by Me and Boris the Bull, which is the brainchild of the mighty Mark Campbell. Thanks to Bob Durling for the album art; find out more about his photography at his blog. Voiceover work is courtesy of James Gralian.

Completely Conspicuous is a Tan God Production. Word.

Thursday, January 06, 2011

Mixology: Smarch Rocks

Mixology is a recurring feature in which I take a look at one of the many mix tapes (or CDs) I made over the years. Some are better than others, but all of them are fun to revisit.

Smarch Rocks: A spring-loaded mix (3/24/06)

Ah, the spring of aught-6. Twas a magical time, what with the MP3 blogs and what not. This is a fun mix to reflect upon. Hard to believe it was almost five years ago that I made it.

About half of the 20 songs were discovered through the various music blogs I was following at the time, including the songs from Runner and the Thermodynamics, Thunderbirds are Now, We are Scientists, Wolf Parade and Tom Vek. The song by The Cloud Room had already achieved some notoriety for the Internet popularity it achieved while actually generating not much in the way of actual sales.

At the time, I was training for the Vermont City Marathon, which was two months later. Lily had just turned the ripe age of 2. I can't even remember her being so little. Weird.

Probably the best thing about this mix and the time period was the diversity of stuff I was listening to. A lot of new stuff, some old, some heavy, some wussy. It was all good. I mean, how nuts is following up My Morning Jacket with Scissorfight? You won't hear that on some lame-ass commercial rock station.

Steady as She Goes - The Raconteurs

Hey Now Now - The Cloud Room

Fire Eye'd Boy - Broken Social Scene

Ramblin' Man - Isobel Campbell and Mark Lanegan

Rise Up With Fists! - Jenny Campbell with the Watson Twins

It Beats 4U - My Morning Jacket

Granite State Destroyer - Scissorfight

Powerlines - Runner and the Thermodynamics

It's All in My Mind - Teenage Fanclub

Eat This City - Thunderbirds are Now!

Goodbye to Guyville - Urge Overkill

The Rat - The Walkmen

Mothra vs. We Are Scientists - We Are Scientists

Instinct Blues - White Stripes

The People That Life Forgot - The Wildhearts

You are a Runner and I am My Father's Son - Wolf Parade

Instant Karma - Yo La Tengo

Lay It On the Line - Triumph

Nothing But Green Lights - Tom Vek

No Threat - The Tragically Hip



Hey now now:


The Rat:

Monday, January 03, 2011

Completely Conspicuous 157: A Good Idea

Special guest Ric Dube joins me on the podcast as we pitch movie ideas for 2011. Listen to the show in streaming audio or download it directly (right click and "save as").

Or you can listen to it here:



The show notes...

Topics:

- Check out Ric's podcast More Lost Time

- Ric offers up some leftover reality show ideas

- "The Accountant"

- Dube: Reviving "Will Power" starring Chris Rock

- Ric's Sandler impression

- Releasing movies in the "dead zone"

- Debating the merits of Oscar hosts

- Kumar: "It Takes Two," a Jennifer Aniston romantic comedy

- Dube suggests combining it with suicidal vampire movie

- "Havin' a Snuh"

- Dube: "App-Lickable"

- Justin Long and an iPhone app

- Digitizing food

- Bonehead of the Week

Music:

The National - Afraid of Everyone

Kurt Vile - In My Time

The Jameses - The Fifth Dimension

Completely Conspicuous is available through the iTunes podcast directory. Subscribe and write a review!

The show is sponsored by Eastbay/Footlocker.com. Use the following codes to get athletic gear from Nike, Adidas, Asics and more. AFCOMP15 will get you 10% off any order of $50 at Eastbay.com, AFCOMP20 will get you 15% off any order of $75 at Eastbay.com and AFCOMPFL will get you 10% off any order of $50 or more at Footlocker.com.

The National song is on the album High Violet on 4AD. Download the song for free at Stereogum.

The Kurt Vile song is on the EP In My Time on Matador Records, where you can download the song for free.

The Jameses song is the B-side of the 7-inch single "Caribou" on Captured Tracks. Download the song for free at Altered Zones.

The opening and closing theme of Completely Conspicuous is "Theme to Big F'in Pants" by Jay Breitling. Find out more about Senor Breitling at his fine music blogs Clicky Clicky and Keeping Some Dark Secrets. Additional music used in the show is by Me and Boris the Bull, which is the brainchild of the mighty Mark Campbell. Thanks to Bob Durling for the album art; find out more about his photography at his blog. Voiceover work is courtesy of James Gralian.

Completely Conspicuous is a Tan God Production. Word.