ANDYVISION - watch me try to be creative. live.

Saturday, January 31, 2009

World's first iPhone track

A little while back, the first music video shot entirely on an iPhone 3G hit the internet from GOSHone.

GOSHone - Newteknowledge

Not super-impressed, but hey, there's got to be a first everything, right? Well, coming from my man Mr. Mind, here's what I'm assuming to be the world's first song completely composed with an iPhone (except maybe the vocals?). It's actually not bad. Check it.

iPhone Band - Smoky Bubbles

Maybe this is the future of music. But yeah, probably not.

Sunset Boulder

Friday, January 30, 2009

OMG. Water-powered jet pack.

Holy crap. I have to have one of these.

Water-powered jet pack

This gives me faith in humanity, the fact that there are people out there making stuff like this. We're gonna be alright after all.

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Mad Libs Men

Advertising's favorite show just got a spin-off thanks to College Humor.


(I lol'd. Seriously. It was embarrassing.)

A perfect Segway to revenge

Finally. After all these bitter years of having to deal with the broken promises of "It." (Remember how they said It was going to change the future, the structure of our cities, our very society?) Finally, someone pays.

Segway face plant

Guess those stabilizers aren't 100% effective if you're a moron.

Get Syked!

So apparently there's a new energy drink hitting the market. But only apparently.

Slam down the new made-for-web commerical:


Sounds awesome? Too bad. Syke is a fake out. Over the course of the next few months this stereotypical energy drink product will be revealed to be a metaphor for cigarettes. It's the newest stab at an anti-smoking initiative and comes from the Virginia Tobacco Settlement Foundation. Basically, it's the same thing that kicked off the ever so infamous Truth campaign in the early 2000. (I still remember when they brought a blackened human lung to our lunch area in 10th grade.)

Anyway, you should read the whole article over here in Richmond's Style Weekly. And check out the Syke site here.

So, what do you think? Will it work? Is it too prolonged and convoluted an effort to really reach kids? Or will it be a huge breakthrough? The effort reminds me of Truth. I wonder if the results will too. Perhaps it's too narrow an idea to continue on as long. Maybe not.

Also, that one spot sort of reminds me of this:

Power Thirst

I'm sure it's intentional. Maybe that's where the entire idea originated. I hope so.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

No way you could do this on a waterbed

If you've been on the internet the last few days you've probably seen this. Either way, you should watch it again. It's pretty mesmerizing. And just pretty.

Oren Lavie - Her Morning Elegance

The song is meh, but I guess it fits the video nicely. One of those cases where the video overpowers the music.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Google to world: "You're welcome for everything."

What? Gmail works while you're offline now? What will Google do next?

Offline Gmail

I'm holding out for a hoverboard.


Choose Your Own Jacuzzi Girl Adventure

There have been a few of these sorts of things pop up since YouTube started allowing links with its video. Sprint did this one early on for their Instinct phone, and recently someone made a Street Fighter game playable across numerous video combinations.

But this latest one by Secret is pretty funny. The premise? You're in a jacuzzi with a beautiful girl and get to choose what happens next. It sounds really creepy/dumb, but it's strangely enthralling because of all the bizarre choices. Also, you might look like a sexual offender if one of your officemates walks in right as you're shoving a mop in a girl's face.

Interactive Jacuzzi Girl

Enjoy. (With discretion.)

The History of the Internet

A pretty rad little animation spanning the early days of what we now know as the internet. It shows the impetuses for those in the military, scientific and commerce sectors to create networked connections. You might get a bit lost towards the end when the a flock of acronyms starts flying, but it's still worth a look.

The History of the Internet

This is why I hate advertising

And why the Super Bowl is a bucket of suck now.

Behold, the new Sobe spot, due to air during Sunday's game:

Sobe - Lizard Lake

I can't decided whether the fact it'll be in 3D makes the whole thing more acceptable or even worse. At least if it's split into a blurry red and blue and I'm not wearing glasses, I won't be able to pick out all the stupid little nuances as much.

I can't even wait to see what GoDaddy does. Blech.

Monday, January 26, 2009

Ur so gay

In honor of Katy Perry's Grammy nomination and planned appearance at the show, I'm reposting her first hit from 2007, a pretty little ditty entitled "Ur So Gay." Rarely—if ever—do I like pop music, but this is a pretty great song.

Katy Perry - Ur So Gay

I wish her other stuff could be this good. Oh well.

At least she was smart releasing this video on the internet only, eschewing the traditional avenues. It generated a lot of buzz for her. And look, here I am talking about it. Well play, Katy. Well played.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Caribous and fish > humans

These pictures pictures come by way of Viral Nerd and are supposed of a caribou that froze standing up in -80°F winds in northern Alaska. Awesome.

But, as I was scanning the page, I found something more awesome:

The stupidity of human beings (myself included) never ceases to amaze me. Also, this is a related oldie but goodie.

You're Doing It Wrong: The Smiling Edition

That's adtarded.

I coined a new word the other day: adtarded.

Adtarded refers to any bit of advertising that is made by people totally within their own heads. It describes ads that are made for other advertisers and not the audience that is actually the intended target. It's often the result of little cultural consideration and more advertisers thinking about making advertisements.

You know the ideas. You come up with them all the time. You think they're funny, and they are. To you. And your friends at the agency/school. I'm guilty of them too.

Keep watch. Don't let your ideas become adtarded.

Animal Collective spaces out

Just saw this video for "My Girls" by Animal Collective. Love the song, and the video's pretty dope too. A little repetitive but mesmerizing at the same time. Check it.

Animal Collective - My Girls

This track is from their last album Merriweather Post Pavilion. Check out the whole thing. Very rad.

Friday, January 23, 2009

Silhouette Masterpiece Theatre

So awesome. More of it over at Silhouette Masterpiece Theatre. Do yourself a favor. Click.

Amalgamated Blows

Props to the guys over at Amalgamated who have made a very funny parody of the CP+B Shred School site I worked on. It's called Amalgamated Blows.

The deadpan lesson video is awesome. Overall, perhaps not as usefull as Shred School, but pretty damn funny. Nicely played.

Also, gotta say, it's pretty sweet to get parodied for the first time. I like.

UPDATE: I just saw that AgencySpy reviewed it and has no idea what's going on. Even funnier.

Ads add drama to your day

Rarely do I laugh out loud at ads, but these ones got me. (Particularly the characters' final expressions.)

Faux soap opera melodrama has been harness for numerous campaigns, but this one for the Minnesota State Lottery toes the line between authenticity, absurdity and self-awareness very well. (I guess you'd need three legs to do that much toeing.) Nicely played.

Minnesota State Lottery ads

Thursday, January 22, 2009


What better way to finish off Music Thursday than with this masterpiece by above average boy band b4-4. This video is a holocaust of music, cinematography and sexuality. Anyone involved in this project should have their eyeballs cut out with sheets of cover stock, dipped in muriatic acid and then force fed to them.

There are so many things wrong with this that I don't even know where to begin. I'll just leave it up to you to experience.

b4-4 - Get Down

According to Wikipedia these guys formed around 1999 and had "moderate success in Canada." Makes you wonder what they're up to now. Whatever it is, they deserve it for making this video.

Stop believing in Don't Stop Believing

Another post for Music Thursday. And this one's a doozy.

Ever thought Journey's anthem/Family Guy montage favorite/Sopranos WTF generator "Don't Stop Believing" is a great song? Well, besides the AMAZING lyrics, it probably has to do with the fact that it sounds like just about every other song out there too. Don't believe me? Watch this.

To explain what's going on here, this is a super common chord progression in pop (i.e. not orchestral/composed) music. It's known as the I-V-vi-IV progression.

Each note in a key gets its own number, 1 through 7, and then chords are built on top of it. For example, these are the chords in the key of C major:

C - I
D - ii
E - iii
F - IV
G - V
A - vi
B - vii°

(An uppercase Roman numeral represents a major chord, a lowercase is a minor chord and the degree sign on the vii° means it's diminished.)

So, back to our chord progression. I starts on the I, which is the tonic or root. In the key of C it's be a C major chord (a triad built from the notes C-E-G). The chord then takes a move to the V chord, the strongest chord besides the I. In C, that'd be G (G-B-D). The next move is to the relative minor, vi. It shares two notes with the I chord and sounds related but with a minor tonality. In C, it's Am (A-C-E). Then we move to the IV, which in C would be F (F-A-C). Then, of course, we resolve back to the I chord, C (C-E-G).

If you don't know music (or, really, music theory) none of that probably made sense to you. that's OK. Music theory is supremely interesting. I did a ton with it when I was in high school and miss it dearly. If you're interested in learning more, you can check out sites like this.

But at least next time you're listening to music, listen for this progression. It's one of the most popular, if not the most. If you ever want lessons (and live in Boulder, CO), let me know. I love this stuff.

A newie oldie but goodie

Continuing with Music Thursday . . .

It seems only right to deduct major points from Pistol Youth for creating a music video from old Golden Girls footage so remarkably similar to Weezer's breakthrough "Buddy Holly" and Happy Days mash-up. Then, when you add in the fact that the Youth's "In Your Eyes" also sounds like a b-side from Green Album or Maladroit-era Weezer, the plagiarism put-off seems nearly insurmountable.

Yet, this video is so strangely amusing that I forgive them. See for yourself:

Pistol Youth - In My Eyes from pistolyouth on Vimeo.

Smoked on the Water

Today is Music Thursday.

First off, an amazing glass harp performance from someone I assume is Finnish or something. It looks cold there, and this guy likely had a lot of free time that enabled him to learn to do this.

It takes me five minutes just to get a sound on one wine glass.

Bonus fact: Benjamin Franklin invented his own version of this called the armonica. Read more about these watery instruments here.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

If you're feeling squirrely today . . .

. . . there's a reason. I've just been informed that today is Squirrel Appreciation Day. I wish I had known about this before. Still, please enjoy it for the next few hours. And read about the holiday and how to celebrate it here.

This squirrel is fat.

Harnessing the power of the people

Most of you have probably seen this video from TED talks two years ago about the amazing program Photosynth by Microsoft. Previously the best example was Notre Dame. So many people had taken images there that by using simple Flickr tags the program could aggregate massive amounts of knowledge and create a 3D, explorable environment.

Along with many of today's advances comes this one from a partnership with CNN. Over the past year I've been extremely impressed by the news organization's utilization of new and emerging technologies and social media (even if that hologram thing was a pretty bold-faced lie). Today they've brought us a new way to relive the inauguration through a Photosynth library. Check it out here. It's very rad.

The really cool thing about this is that—as far as I know—it's the first time Photosynth has been harnessed so instantly. The Notre Dame example works well because so many photos have been taken of the building over years. But this is from a singular event, shared by millions. And within hours we have this.

As more people add to the database it'll become even more power—and cool. This is web 3.0, folks. Harnessing a collective cloud of data to explore the world with depth and total transparency. You can't give Obama credit for it, but somehow it seems like pretty appropriate timing.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Sunday, January 18, 2009

The Matrix as done by cats

Normally I'd send something like this to Kasia, but it's sort too awesome not to share with with everyone.

Matrix Cat Fight

Friday, January 16, 2009

R Kelly's freelancing for the McDonald's account

McNugget Lovin'

I realize I may not be in the target market, but . . . uhhhh???

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Last chance to buy my mustache

Just so you know . . .

Right here: mustache for sale

It's going fast! Get on it! The auction ends 10:16 am EST. Stay vigilant! Watch for snipers! Buy now!

Star Wars . . . or Something

Ever had someone try to recap a movie to you that they couldn't really remember themselves? Better yet, ever had that person try to recite a whole trilogy? That's the premise of this video by Joe Nicolosi who asked his friend to give a summary of the Star Wars Trilogy. She'd only seen "bits and pieces." Hilarity ensues. Plus, some funny animations. Watch.

Star Wars: Retold (by someone who hasn't seen it) from Joe Nicolosi on Vimeo.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Best new artist of 2009. Already calling it.

From a public access channel in Florida, I present to you Mark Gormley.

Mark Gormely - Without You

The crazy thing is that this song actually sort of rocks. Seriously. It definitely got stuck in my head after I watched it. The ending is epic.

Good ole Mark’s got a few other classics from yesteryear. This one from ’06 about . . . wings(?)

Mark Gormley - Wings

And this one about . . . um . . . ???

Mark Gormely - Beginnings

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

OMG. Weezer just broke the internets.

Via Pitchfork, apparently this is the new, slightly remixed version of the digital monument to the Information Superhighway that is "Pork & Beans" by Weezer. But this one is tricky and released under a different account and sports a minimally altered name.

It features YouTube within YouTube (whaa?) and an orgy of memes so dense it'll make you constipated for a week. Watch it. Have your mind blown. It's insane.

Weezer - Pork & Beens

If you want to compare it to the original, peep it here.

[Note: Enabling is disabled on the original version. WTF.]

My mustache and you

For anyone closely following the sale of my mustache on eBay, it's going price is now up to $15.45 with a little under three days left. At the press time it had 627 hits and 16 bids.

But don't get discouraged this mustache could be all yours. Plenty of time left to get on there and bid your little hairless heart out. You can check out the auction right about here.

Monday, January 12, 2009

You lookin' juicy, gurrrl

This kind of stuff never happens on Facebook.

Hëävÿ Mëtäl Bänd Nämës

(Click for larger image.)

Friday, January 9, 2009

My mustache is now for sale

You read that right. My mustache is now up for sale on eBay. I delicately removed the little dude last night and just placed him up for adoption several minutes ago. Click here to go to the auction.

Here's a pic of the beaut you could be bidding on:

Also, I made a video documenting the whole thing. You can watch that below.

I'm selling my mustache on eBay

Anyone's birthday coming up and you just don't know what to get them? Surprise them with a real, human-hair mustache! Great for Valentine's Day and bris!

Thursday, January 8, 2009

What it's like to have a mustache

It's all true. Seriously.

Family Guy - Mustache Dad

Family Guy - Peter Griffin Has a Mustache

7 Up both for yours

Randomly found this in a photo dig on Flickr:

It looks like Orlando Jones just randomly walked into someone's photo booth. I guess he'll take anything these days.

(For the record, it's "Tony, Kendal, Evan - Kendal's birthday.") It seems he's taken an assumed name.

The 'stache bash is official

In keeping with the reoccurring mustachioed theme of this blog, here's a great article from the New York Times: Inching Its Way Back Onto the Lip. (Sorry, you have to log in, but it's free.) Thanks to Thanh Mueller for this gem of journalism.

Oh, and expect some more, exciting 'stache-related news here soon.

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

How'd he get those cheerleaders?

Don't watch this whole video. Just watch the intro.

Paul Gilbert teaches scales

Then click to around 3:05 for another treat.

Apparently this was right around the time they began making blue screens for cheap.

Love it.

24 Hours of Courtney Love

Courtney Love is an annoying, drug-addled trilobite of a humanoid that killed Kurt Cobain and pissed on his grave. BUT, this is pretty awesome.

Back in 2002 she did a stint hosting MTV for a full 24 hours. Below is a video of some of her greatest hits during that guest appearance. I can only imagine what it would've been like to see 1,440 minutes of this, but luckily the video is only four minutes. And bizarrely captivating. Enjoy.

24 Hours of Courtney Love

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Contagious stuff from 2008

Want to know everything piece of technology/gaming/entertainment/music/design/social media/websites/application/integrated/viral/mobile/outdoors/places/content/green from 2008 that was amazing/mind-blowing/game-changing/surprising/huge/explosive/overpowering/inescapable/breath-taking/jealous-inducing/revolutionary/just-plain-awesome?

Well then. Check out Contagious Magazine's Contagious 2008. Click here to download the whole PDF. It's a great wrap-up to a pretty amazing year. Makes you wonder what we'll do this year. . . .

Sunday, January 4, 2009

Want to feel better about the world?

Watch this.

Elephant and Dog BFF

My Top 18 Albums of 2008

I realize I'm a few days late with the end-of-the-year list, but whatever. I'm on vacation. Anyway, here's a list of my eighteen favorite albums of 2008. Why eighteen you ask? Because that's how many I felt like desired it. Also, they're not necessarily the best of the year, just may favorites (although there's obviously a good bit of overlap). So, here they are:

Andy's Top 18 Albums of 2008

1. Neon Neon – Stainless Style

One of this year’s surprise offerings, Neon Neon is a collaborative side project by Gruff Rhys (of Super Furry Animals fame) and Boom Bip. To explain it simply, the release is a concept album about the life of John De Lorean, head of De Lorean Motor Company (yes, the car company that made that Back to the Future car). The offerings switch between a remarkably authentic remake of ‘80s pop and dirty grind hip-hop, making the journey through the high and lows of John’s life unexpected and often pretty funny. Still, the tunes are fun and really unlike anything else out there this year.

2. The Hold Steady – Stay Positive

One of my all-time favorites returned after 2006’s masterpiece Boys and Girls in America. Not much has changed this time around—it’s still songs about drinking, drug use and bizarrely appropriate religious explorations—except that this time the events in Ybor City all seem a bit darker. The characters (or character types at least) that were introduced to us in the previous albums have no grown a bit, and life and time have started to take their toll. (It reminds me a bit of some Drive By Trucker efforts in a way.) Still, the message is ultimately about staying positive (whether authentically or in a more “ignorance is bliss” type way). “Constructive Summer” is a shimmering anthem to open, and the play closes on the epic “Slapped Actress.”

3. Fleet Foxes – Fleet Foxes

Hands-down one of the year’s best album (the best according to Pitchfork). This songs like Appalachia sobered up, given an electric guitar and taken to a dark club in Williamsburg. It sounds too collective and traditional to be from now but too layered and polished to be of old. It’s a strange dichotomy that oozes from this album in a beautiful, seamless wave. Fleet Foxes expands on some of what My Morning Jacket, Band of Horses, Okkervil River and others have done but in an oddly authentic way. Really stunning stuff.

4. Of Montreal – Skeletal Lamping

This album didn’t get a lot of love from the critics, but I found it remarkable. True, it wasn’t as deep and indiscernible as some of Barnes and Co.’s previous efforts, but that’s what made it somewhat more accessible. On the other hand, the album jumps between styles so much—mostly intra-song in fact—that it’s hard to settle into anything. The amazing thing about this is that each song contains an average about 3.4 different hooks that could exist entirely on their own but are instead woven into the pastiches of a) the song and b) the entire album. In fact, the whole thing comes off as almost an operatic piece, which mirrors the spectacle of their live shows. What also surprised me at points was how very poppy some songs are. And I don’t mean poppy in the sense of “indie pop” but in genuine a sense of genuine pop pop.

5. Mogwai - The Hawk Is Howling

Scottish instrumental/shoegazer/post-rock gods deliver their last record that both roars with heavy of massive, fuzzy guitar riffs and drops to glimmering diminutive passages. Either way, the action is pushed along by churning bass lines. As songs build they gain mass and momentum until they fly end-over-end over the cliff's edge and explode into a free fall. Nothing flashy just the band's own brand of vocal-less hard rock (that once or twice seems to even border on Ratatat, although moreso in spirit). This was my favorite album to write to all year. Ethereal but driving, nebulous but very simple.

5. Santogold – Santogold

Santi White’s been writing and producing others’ work for a while, but her debut this was one of the freshest—and catchiest—pieces of pop music in recent memory. I haven’t heard more mind-sticking tracked crammed into a 40-minute disc ever. “L.E.S. Artistes,” “Creator,” “Shove It,” “Say Aha” and the surprisingly refreshing surf-pop “Lights Out.” People compare her to M.I.A. because she’s a stylish, ethnic female that writes memorable pop, but the two are drastically different. And frankly, this album has my vote over last year’s Kala. (Plus, Santogold isn’t a terrorist.)

6. MGMT – Oracular Spectacular

MGMT is just a straight party. And “Time to Pretend,” the album’s biggest hit, is the anthem. No one that hears this album doesn’t love it instantly. A great band, based a little in Athens but mostly in Brooklyn, they remind me a bit of Vampire Weekend in the hype, but this release certainly delivered a joyous, energetic explosion of dance, electric, rock and pop. (Side note: One read one of the most pretentious indie critics remarks from Pitchfork about this band. A comment on their January performance on Letterman was that is was “so 2007.” It sounds sarcastic. I really don’t think it was.)

7. Vampire Weekend – Vampire Weekend

This album was already a retardedly huge hit before it ever hit the intertubular wires. I’ve never seen an album be so long in coming yet also get so much hype, about a whole year’s-worth. (This is, if you forget this year’s release of Guns ‘n Rose’s (a.k.a. Axl Rose’s) long-awaited Chinese Democracy. And it’s probably better that we do forget it.) These smart kids from New England seem the antithesis of everything that indie is about yet they managed to absolutely enrapture the cynics. Listening sounds like driving down to your dad’s marina on Cape Cod in your beige C-Class with the windows rolled down, something that most of us can’t relate to and would reject out of principle. But listening to this album allows us to put on our Sperrys and just enjoy the moment. We needn’t discuss anything more weighty that seeing an ex-hook-up walking across campus or the proper use of punctuation. It feels sort of nice.

8. Death Cab for Cutie – Narrow Stairs

I don’t care what you think about Death Cab or emo/indie-on-steroids frontman Ben Gibbard, they write some great songs. “Grapevine Fires” wafts like melancholy smoke on the warm Californian wind. “Your New Twin Sized Bed” continues the depression with a heart-wrenching tale of giving up on life. The album has one or two missteps, but overall it’s really a great piece (and a huge improvement over their last outing). There’s still nobody out there that creates such a clean, optimistically-sounding pit of well-articulated misery like DCFC.

9. Sigur Rós - Með suð í eyrum við spilum endalaust

Despite the the riots in Iceland, Sigur Rós offered another album of pure bliss. The opening track “Gobbledigook” shines with a spritely, almost tribal energy unheard of in any of their previous work. (And the video, by photographer Ryan McGinley was a fittingly joyous piece of cinematography.) The other songs fall a little closer to the Sigur Rós tree, but they without muddled, sustained feel of previous works. The songs trade in their ethereal epic-ness for a more intimate openness. Granted, I have no idea what ole Jónsi is singing about (except in “All Alright,” their first song in English that closes the album), but the songs somehow see more grounded in a tangible reality this time around. (Bonus: The album art has streakers on the front. Awesome!)

10. M83 – Saturdays=Youth

I’m not sure why it took me so long to discover Anthony González and his outfit, but I’m sure glad I did this year. His fifth album is another sweeping wall of synth and reverb that envelops the listener. Sometimes it’s a claustrophobia-inducing assault (“Couleurs”) and at other times is a melody wasteland a la Air (the following track “Up!”). I’ve heard a lot of reviews that compare it close to ‘80s new wave synth and John Hughes films, but I think what González aimed for was not a remake but rather his own creation youthful innocence. And he captures it, in some odd electronicky sort of way.

11. Weezer – [The first half of] Weezer (The Red Album)

[Note: This is partially why I said my "favorite" albums and not the "best" albums of 2008.] I’ll be the first to admit that I’m a total sucker for anything Weezer (i.e. take this all with a grain of salt) so I was obviously very excited about the release of yet another self-titled album (this time, “The Red Album”). While the new material still doesn’t—and will never—reach the level of their early work, parts of this album are great. Parts. In fact, I can tell you which parts. The first five songs. After that, the album descends into a deep pit of mediocrity only exacerbated by the fact that the non-Rivers members of the band each get to sign their own tune. But the first five are great. OK, fully disclosure: It’s really mostly the second track “The Greatest Man That Ever Lived” that makes everything worthwhile. It’s like a nerds version of “Bohemian Rhapsody.” Weezer have really become a farce into and of themselves, but this track is an epic celebration of it, which comes of as just pure awesome.

12. Grand Ole Party – Humanimals

OK, technically this album came out first in early 2007 and was released on iTunes in August of the same year, but it was finally picked up and released physically in February of 2008 so I’m putting it on here because they deserve to have people listen to them. This trio from San Diego has the raw swagger that somehow only a female-fronted troupe can exude. The band sounds very similar to Yeah Yeah Yeahs, but Kristin Gundred’s vocals border more closely on those of Beth Gibbons from Portishead—powerfully feminine, raspingly sexy and soulfully vaudevillian. I don’t know what she looks like, but I think I love her. Oh yeah, and she also plays drums.

13. Portugal. The Man – Censored Colors

I’ve been impressed by each release by this band hailing from (of all places) Wasilla, Alaska. Their first album was a jangled cacophony of opposing forces, the second a great piece of tambourined rock and now their third is a smooth flight over the isolation of the Alaskan landscape. They’ve traded their crunchy electrics for thinner acoustics but with wider arrangements. The results is really more multilayered soundscapes cut into pieces of cloth and sewn together. It’s not as jarring as Waiter: “You Vultures!” or accessible as Church Mouth, but it explores a whole new palette of colors for the band.

14. Bon Iver – For Emma, Forever Ago

A really haunting beautiful album recorded by one man by himself in a cabin in the woods of Wisconsin. It follows nicely in the vein of many of the other indie-folk acts that have emerged recently. One some senses it reminds me of some sensibilities of José González if he were, well, locked in a cabin in the woods somewhere in America. Mellow, meditative and enveloping.

15. Minus the Bear – Acoustics

Again, this is mostly personal preference. It’s really just an EP of acoustic tracks from older material (with one new song), but it offers a new take on MTB’s music. For a band so reliant of hyper-kinetic, mathematical guitar work it’s interesting to hear their songs deconstructed to a looser vibe that allows them to breath organically. Not for everyone, but I enjoyed it.

16. Frightened Rabbit – The Midnight Organ Fight

A very surprising album from this Scottish band. It’s tough to pin down exactly their style which can range from a sort of Decembrists folksiness to a Dismemberment Plan weirdness to a chugging (old school) Snow Patrol pop. The most arresting thing about the band is perhaps the clarity of singer Scott Hutchinson’s vocals. They soar above the tight ensemble that makes the lyrics even more disarming. Every time I listen to it I’m surprised at how not-ground-breaking it sounds while still seeming wholly unique.

17. Fucked Up – The Chemistry of Common Life

Hardcore punk strikes back with this rager. It’s like getting a grenade thrown into your living room. In fact, for some reason I listen to this album and imagine these guys actually playing in my living room and just absolutely trashing the place. It’s something like what Black Flag would sound like in 2008 is they were writing songs about the Apocalypse. The thing that’s most surprising about these guys though is their fearlessness to throw in a lot of slower, melodic elements that one isn’t accustomed to finding on a hardcore record. At times it almost sounds like two bands having a fight on one album. (It definitely has a Rancid quality to it, albeit way more aggressive.)

Saturday, January 3, 2009

They know their target market

I just saw this banner ad on a torrent site.


Of course I had to push it. Nothing happened other than taking me to some website where I could win a free iPhone and Bluetooth headset. False advertising.

Sadly, this banner will likely get more hits than any one I ever make.

Friday, January 2, 2009

I got sort of scared

Just saw this over on scaryideas. From Y&R Singapore:

Really weak art direction, but the idea is nice. Clean, simple, funny. I like.

Fúbol vs. football

I'm watching Alabama get murdered by Utah, but still found this true. Never really understood the nomenclature on this one.

Thursday, January 1, 2009

It burns

Watching the UGA/Michigan State game I heard one of the best sports commentator remark I've heard in quite a while. In reference to Georgia's propensity for turnovers and penalties, one of them said, "They're pulling a Plaxico. They just keep shooting themselves."


Awesome comment though.