Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Probably The Final Blog Of The Year

Geez, 2008 was kind of a tough one, you guys. I mean, not really for me, just in general. Actually, 2008 was pretty alright- good even. On to the bullet points!

-Obligatory Christmas info: long vacation, too much food, great (cold) weather. Ranch catastrophes are commonplace this time of year, so we all had to take care of a dying goat- just another day in Paso. All the family was around pretty much the whole time, which is rare. With multiple people, however, comes disease- and I've spent Christmas eve until now as a congested, sore-throated mess.

-Don't buy things from Best Buy. I should've known, especially cause I read Consumerist damn near everyday. Collecting X-Mas money, gift cards and etc., Dawn and I decided to buy an LCD HDTV. I didn't want to order it because I didn't want to deal with delivery hassles (not being home, etc.) and I was sketched out by Circuit City's impending bankruptcy, so I cracked and went to Fucking Best Buy (as it shall henceforth be known). The one by my work didn't have the approprate models in stock, so I drove to Costa Mesa, where they did. After long considerations about which picture was better (Samsung vs. Sony), I went with the Sony, bought it, got it home, unboxed it, and immediatly re-boxed it. Because the screen was shattered. Awesome. Took it back less than an hour after I bought it, when the Fucking Best Buy "manager" told me this doesn't happen to tvs so they couldn't help me, becuase it was something I did. Wrong, asshole. After some, shall we say, stern words, said Fucking Best Buy "manager" dissapeared and someone brought me a new TV, whose box I promptly opened in the store to verify the lack of shattering on the tv screen. Fuckers.

-I was able to summarize my musical taste with one trip to Boo Boos. I Purchased records by 2 artists: Paul McCartney (McCartney and Ram) and Sonic Youth (Confusion Is Sex, and SYR 8 live with Merzbow). One end of the rock music spectrum to the other: oldtimey-folk-classicrock-avantgarde-postpunk-noise-improvisation. Awesome.

-New Years plans: Big Bear. I've probably spent more time in Big Bear over New Years than anywhere else othe than my Mom's house. It's my brother Tim's bday on the first, so we will do much celebrating up there. Should be good times.

-Wedding update: date is set, catering booked, invitations designed, (cup)cake(s) tasted, dress (apparently- not my department) picked out. Not too bad for only one month of being engaged.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

This Week's Tunes

Man, weather is wierd. Less than a month ago it was around 100 degrees- and as of yesterday it was about 40 and pissing rain. On of my favorite things about where I live is standing on the beach looking at snow covered mountains.
So this got me in the winter mood- and with the holidays fast approaching, I dusted off some old friendlies to warm me up, music-wise.

-Mogwai: Mr. Beast
-Jimi Hendrix: Band of Gypsies
-Any Beatles record
-Mastodon: Blood Mountain & Leviathan
-Interpol: Turn On The Bright Lights
-Ataxia: Automatic Writing
-John Frusciante: DC EP
-And yes, I fucking like Christmas music, so I have a playlist of that going on iTunes. Deal with it.

Friday, December 12, 2008

2 Recent Revelations

I was watching Dave Chappelle's Block Party (again) the other day and I realized two things:

1. Lauren Hill is certainly the best female singer in modern music. Seriously- her voice is amazing, easily ahead of Beyonce (sorry Beyonce, no time to hunt-and-peck for your accent marks), Christina Aguilera (whose voice has like, zero personality), and Alicia Keys (she comes in second place, bolstered by her friendship with Jack White). However- I can't stand her! I don't know why. I love the Fugees, but she drives me nuts for some reason- maybe because she is rather nuts herself.

2. It's a serious bummer living in a world where Dave Chappelle is still in virtual hiding. I know he has/had a lot of shit on his mind- but come say hi once in a while Dave! Even an Oprah appearance would be welcome.

Friday, December 5, 2008

Things That Have Happened (to me) Since The Last Time I Got Gas for $1.86

Yes, the threshold has been crossed. Gas at this particular gas station is actually below $1.86 at the time of this writing- it's 7-11, 17th St, Costa Mesa here. This is a memorable amount is because I was helping Dawn move into the old Costa Mesa apartment, and the day after driving a miserable, air conditioning-less, radio-less huge U-Haul truck from Paso to the Mesa in the middle of August (2003, pending verification), I couldn't help thinking how screwed I was getting by filling up the truck at the 7-11 down the street for $1.86/gal. Little did I know, right? Get ready for a big ass incomplete sentence, starting NOW!

Graduated college, Paso earthquake, layoff, move to So Cal, collect unemployment, blow savings, internship (Adam LaRue is the greatest), "Sweet" music industry job, overworked & underpaid in shitty Garden Grove (excellent freinds made, however), TiVo zombie initiation, getting a cat, early (forced) retirement from music tastemaking (Sierra and I broke Fall Out Boy. Really. Kinda. Yes, unfortunately all in a days work), Dawn graduates law school ass-kickingly, European Sojurn, The Lost Year (which I will not speak of other than saying unemployment, depression, temp jobs), going to the gym, getting my shit together, getting a "real" job, new laptop (!), de-vegitarianizing, expanding liquid horizions, joining/quitting a drummerless band, moving to Corona Del Mar, getting engaged.
So there we are, up to last week. Weirdness!

The Current "Stuff."

-Brian Eno: Taking Tiger Mountian (By Strategy)
-Mogwai [as usual]: The Hawk Is Howling & My Father My King
-The Beatles: The White Album
-Melvins: The Maggot [Dude, I like it! Sorry for calling you out in the past Buzz]
-The Andrew Oldham Orchestra: The Rolling Stones Songbook [The last song on here may sound very familiar to you. Research!]
-Mastodon: Blood Mountain
-Scott Walker: Scott 2
-To buy: new (International) Noise Conspiracy, new phono preamp

Other Music Stuff:
-Geeking out over Mastodon recording a new record: check this and this.
-Have a bunch of Boris records to go through that I "got" from my brother. He loves the sludge-metal, that's for sure.

Holiday Attack:
-Other than getting engaged (geez- obvs, Brian), Thanksgiving was memorable for these reasons: A)The worst heartburn of my life. B) Drinking alcohol before 9 am for several days in a row (see "A" above). C) Playing video games with parents/adult family (it was Wii, but still. My Mom thinks creating "Mii"s is the most hillarious thing ever).
-I started Christmas shopping earlier than ever this year. Congrats to myself for good planning/budgeting.
-XMas tree this weekend?

Wedding Attack:
-1 week into planning and shit's going pretty well. After some haggling over the date (and many, many congrats to Megan and Morgan), things are going nicely. Only 10 months to go!
-The first thing I did when I got home and plugged my music hard drive in was start playlisting. I AM UNSTOPPABLE, and possibly the best DJ ever.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Hello Adulthood, nice to finally meet you.

Yes, Dawn and I are now engaged.

That is all for now.

Monday, November 24, 2008

The Great Dr. Pepper Debacle of 2008

Yes, its an overstatement, but I really wanted a free Dr. Pepper. Since the World's Greatest Comedy Record came out the other day, I was looking forward to signing up for my free Dr. Pepper- which leads me to my point:
IT people responsible for estimating server traffic the world over should be fired, because they are always wrong.
Now, I know that the Dr. Pepper example could be just Dr. Pepper trying to avoid sending very many people a free DP coupon. This, being the most likely case, should result in Dr. Pepper being fired.
However, think of other examples. The 2 recent ones that come to mind are the Firefox 3 launch and the iPhone Firmware v2.0 launch. According to my simplistic understanding of economics (read: 4+ years studying it in school), it would appear that turning people away from your website/store would not be beneficial to the "bottom line." Is it that hard to overestimate? You have months! At least 6 months, in Apple's case (AND THEY MAKE SERVERS) to get some extra lines flowing.
The only solution is thus: fire everyone everywhere involved in estimating server traffic on launch day.

You're welcome, bottom lines everywhere.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Things I'm Into: RIGHT NOW Edition

Apologies for the net-yelling. I wanted capitalizations, so deal with it.

Music: Blasts from the past:
The Get Up Kids (freshly reunited!)
The Descendents (RIP Frank Navetta)

Long forgotten webzines:
Suck dot com: I didnt make that a link because the site hasn't been around for years, and I didn't want to inadvertently trick anyone into clicking a porn link. I'm not sure that it is a porn link, but I'm at work and don't want to find out [edit: the site is still there! Thanks wikipedia!]. Anyways, Suck was a back-in-the-day internet site that I thought was funny in my 14.4 dialup netscape days. I was just telling Dawn how my mom was dissatisfied with me because I had a graphic from the site as my desktop on my OG computer. Anywho, it was a picture of 2 socks with a sign that said "Live Fast, Die Young." Needless to say, I don't think she (my mom) got it. "They're socks, mom!" I said. There was also a little blurb on the AV Club on how a bunch of their articles were made into a book. [Note: an (probably not) exhaustive google image search failed to retrieve said socks.]

Hating on the Weather:
Really? 94 degrees in the middle of November? Southern California, you're a dick. Just a I had decided to embrace  the whole "Christmas decorations start even more incredibly earlier" thing, it becomes July again. [Note: This was originally gonna be a "Music for Winter" post, but I need a few days of sub-70 degree weather to get back in the mood.]

Doris Kearns Goodwin: Team Of Rivals
The latest in my "bought-as-a-gift-for-my-stepdad-and-then-stolen-back" series. You: "Ooooh, such a topical reading choice!"

Saturday, November 15, 2008

The Blog That Was The Day That Was 11/4/08

By now everyone knows that Nov. 4th was kind of a big deal- but I always knew that. Here's my day- keeping it real on a sweet b-day.
Awaken! Way too early!

The most crucial ingredient to any successful day- Italian Roast.

Coffee and (homemade, of course) cornbread. Desayuno de loscampeones.

First jam of the day, as told by a horribly out-of-focus phone pic.

Kristin: Ahead of the game. Thanks.

Exercise is horrible.

Get fancy for the DMV (it did no good).

Directly after I took this picture, some DMV guy walked by and said "About 1 hour from right here," and pointed at me.

Ugh. My paperwork is piling up.

Fruits of labor.

Even bros vote around here.

The scene.

Civic duty: done.

Reward time: beastly present opening.

In the box- fuzzy destruction. My lady is the raddest.

[Note: There should be a picture here of Dawn and I dining at my favorite vegan restaurant , but I forgot to take one. We were getting the full hippie on.]

New shoes and the finest in punditry- Stewart/Colbert.

The rest of the audience: Dawn, Oliver, and Danielle.

Finally on the winning team.

We weren't sure, so we had to check with these evil bastards (that's Karl Rove's fat ass attempting to hold back tears).

Celebrating patriotism like a Frenchman.

A fantastic end to a mostly fantastic day. Cheesecake!

Aaaaaaand that's pretty much it. Sorry for the terrible formatting (thanks Blogger!) and the terrible pictures (thanks Lack of Skill!).

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Current Bullshit

Here's some current materialism for you. I used to put this stuff on my myspace, but, as we all know, myspace sucks balls.

Brian Eno: Another Green World
Public Enemy: It Takes A Nation of Millions...
Smashing Pumpkins: Machina II
Hot Snakes: Automatic Midnight
Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds: Tender Prey
Kanye West: The College Dropout & Late Registration

Michael Pollan: The Omnivore's Dillemma
Guitar Player Magazine
Vintage Guitar Magazine

Role Models

Guitar Shit:
Devi Ever Shoegazer
Line 6 DL4


New harddrives
Maxing out memory

Recent Concerts:
Mogwai @ The Wiltern (A)
Raconteurs @ The Greek (B)
My Bloody Valentine @ Santa Monica Civic (A-)

Monday, November 10, 2008

The Best Junk Mail Ever?

Junk Mail: my truest, in every since of the phrase, Love/Hate Relationship. Sure, it's one of the hugest ass-pains in modern society, but without it, where would we get gems like this one (allegedly from "GOPUSA Friends"):
Subject: "Chuck Norris To America: Wake Up!"
Of course, I didn't open the message, but did I really need to? Nah. It says EVERYTHING in that subject line. I love that I'm even on the (obviously purchased) mailing list for these supposed "GOPUSA Friends." It takes away the need to gloat.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Dear America: WOW.

Dear California: WHAT THE FUCK?!

Monday, November 3, 2008

I did some of my own polling.

-Chance of celebration tomorrow: 96.3%
-Chance of cheesecake tomorrow: 100%
-Chance of UPS losing my birthday present (from Dawn), finding it, and subsequently delivering it last Saturday night between 6 & 10 pm: 100%
-Chance of my day being ruined by the DMV tomorrow: 30%
-Chance of my Halloween playlist having been awesome: 100%
-Chance of Proposition 8 supporters being horrible people: 100% (This one has been independently verified. BY REASON.)
-Chance of my brother and his friends being badass and stealing "about 30" Yes on 8 signs as well as "some" Yes on 4 signs: 100%
-Chance of me being sketched out that my polling place is a residence: 75%
-Chance of rain tomorrow: 20%
-Chance of me going to the record store tomorrow: 50%
-Chance of me buying a new guitar pedal in the next month: 95%
-Chance of my Dad or Grandpa waking me up with a phone call tomorrow morning: 85%
-Chance of above, plus my Mom or Sister: 100%
-Chance of me taking my birthday off work for the first time ever (except when I called in sick to work at CCS): 100%
-Chance of me watching a music DVD tomorrow (most likely a Beatles Anthology episode, or Refused Are Fucking Dead): 70%

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Norton 360 Is A Horrible Peice Of Shit

It wont let me post in response to topics on here (but I guess that's what I get for blogging from work). So this is in reference to the post below:

@Andy: I read that too, but I also read today that they we setting up a meeting, so I guess we'll see what happens. And thanks for the vote of confidence, but I doubt increase readership would have any effect on my laziness.
@Time Magazine (who I didn't attribute that quote to): Sorry, but shouldn't it be "disproven?"

Monday, October 27, 2008

I'm not a "spiritual" dude, but I've always liked this guy.

"Though he is a spiritual leader, the Dalai Lama also holds a doctorate in philosophy. He rejects anything that has been disproved by scientific inquiry and dismisses Buddhist teachings not verified by science."

Friday, October 17, 2008

Get Linked.

-Certainly sleazy- there's no debating that. But he is doing a lot of good, and making good clothes. Click!
-Rats are ultra awesome. So is shredding! Click!
-The worlds longset insect- enough said. Click!

Thursday, October 16, 2008

And, In Other News...

-Dare I say, things are looking up for my birthday. It's weird having hope for the country. My inner ultra-negative cynic isn't totally going away though.

-On a related note, if this whole election clusterfuck turns out favorably, I'd really like to visit Washington DC. I've always wanted to go (to the Smithsonian, especially), but banished the idea from my mind about, oh, eight years ago.

-This is a pretty funny article- not only because the idea of the Chinese Democracy record is hilarious, but they put up a picture of Radiohead instead of that cornrowed, football jersey-wearing fatty. I think Axl thinks they are the same band anyway, so that may just be the picture the record company sent. It'll probably be taken down soon, and I dont know how to take a screenshot in (bleeeecccch) Windows. Check it quick!

-That is all.

Friday, October 3, 2008

Ways to Describe The Aural Experience of Seeing My Bloody Valentine Live

-Having your brain fucked by a jet engine
-Standing under the space shuttle for 15 minutes during takeoff
-Riding a missle, Dr. Strangelove style, home from a rave
-Being drug about via 747/chest harness
-Being trapped in a reverse sensory-deprivation chamber
-Only bad things happen at volumes this loud. Like the Santa Monica Civic Auditorium collapsing.
-Eardrum holocaust
-Near-panic loud

Check out this article for a good representation. It really was a strange, unbelieveable experience. And I don't say that hippy shit often.

Friday, September 26, 2008

Looking Forward the Recession (Depression?)

Firstly, because no one in my immediate circle is looking like they will be directly affected at the moment. And Dawn and I have a pretty good amount of job security at the moment. But I do feel for the people that screwed by bad mortgages and shady investment bankers (isn't that all of them?).
OK, now that the pleasantries are out of the way, lets get selfish:
-Less cars on the road: less traffic, less gas burned, less demand for cars and gas.
-Car makers building higher value cars, with better fuel efficiency. It's kinda nerdy, but I have a desire deep down inside to drive an all-electric Mini Cooper.
-The absolutely retarded world of the musical instrument industry will (hopefully) come to its senses. Used/vintage stuff is obscenely overpriced. Gibson is raising prices by double digit percentages while skimping on quality. As soon as people stop buying overpriced shit like brand new $5000 guitars "relic-ed" to look old, normal dudes like me that just like to make music just might become able to get some good sounding stuff at reasonable prices.
-Housing prices are plummeting. Needless to say, I would love to own a house one day. Loans will be harder to get, but that's why we pay attention to building good credit, right? Right?
-The music industry as we know it could finally be put out of its misery. Right now it's bloodied and beaten, laying on the floor of some backwater Texan chapel (only way less awesome and ass-kicking, like The Bride), waiting for Bill to come finish it/her off. [Admittedly, I was thinking that was a good analogy at the beginning, but now I realize it kinda sucks. Sorry.] I like the idea that becoming a musician isn't an automatic meal ticket for fameseekers.
-Public Works. Remember that brilliant package of borderline-socialist economic stimulus plans? No, the one that started in 1933. FDR? Keynes? Ring a bell? Yeah, The New Deal, dig it. Farm programs, WPA... Good shit could really be done, all while stimulating employment and spending. Dear Mr. Next President Who I Hope Isn't That Fascist Moron John McCain: Hook it up. Build us some roads and schools and stuff. Oh, and while your at it, subsidise the arts and artists.

Also check out this article.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Yeah, I'm a Scenester, Fuck Off.

And I'm reeeeeealllly excited about seeing My Bloody Valentine next week:
20 minute long free-noise closer?
Body massaging stage volume?
"Only 30" of Kevin Shields' "hundreds" of guitar pedals?
$460,000 spent on sound equipment?
In Santa Monica?
For a best-case-scenario quality reunion performance?

Fuck, yes please.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Cool Shit Vs. Bummer Shit

Cool Shit:
Mind-fucking Mogwai gig the other night
Raconteurs on Monday @ The Greek
Magazine subscriptions
Matador Records being the only good record label. (And Dischord too, duh.)
The Traveling Wilburys
Impending fall (seasonally)
Samuel Smith's
Shred Sticks
Getting my favorite jeans back from being mended
Gabe from Videogum (Example: "I believe that my limited experience as Governor of Zings more than qualifies me to be the Vice President of Zings.")
Finally (almost) completing my pedalboard
The Ben Kingsley/Minor Threat video (look it up, I haven't the energy)
This Picture: 
And this picture (Thurston gets around):

Bummer Shit
Ultimate Fighting's popularity (and the dumb-ass Affliction shirts that go along with it)
Bands that dress like 1800's train conductors (I'm looking at you Dr. Dog & Fleet Foxes)
Not getting off my ass and onto one of the old shredsticks
Needing a new ride
WaMu going to shit
Trying to install Norton at work
Dawn being in Tahoe (on business! wtf?) without me
The new adidas store not being open yet
Not having a good phono preamp (Shit! The Batcat 12" is on the way! Roky Erickson is in those little grooves!)

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Things That Will Fuck Up, Could Fuck Up and Are Fucking Up Other Things, Not Limited To Myself or Society In General.

Item 1: Republicans
Please Democratic Party, resist the urge to fuck this one up. You have it so easy. I wouldn't put it past you though, and I'm gonna be stressed out at least until November.
[On a related note- guess what I want for my birthday? Hint: it's on November 4th- which could potentially make it my best or worst birthday ever. And that's coming from someone who was born the day Regan was elected.]
Item 2: Style (debatable) Over Substance
The dude from Thursday wrote an interesting article about political activism in music. It's on the Headbanger's Ball website (haaaaaaaaaa!), and it's not the best written article on the subect I've ever read, but it's still pretty good. I often (read: constantly) wonder the same thing. I have also resigned myself to the fact that if the Bush Administration can't bring FUGAZI back together for a protest show or two (or hundred), nothing will.
Item 3: Mogwai Vs. My Ears
I'm worried, because I lost my earplugs. I accidentally threw them out when we moved- they were in an Altoids box (to keep them minty fresh, naturally), that I thought was empty (they're very light, naturally). We're (Dawn, Chase, & myself) going to see our favorite Scottish Post-Rock Mostly-Instrumental Genius Titans tonight and I fear my ears are doomed. Work tomorrow may just be a days of ringing ears and "What?" Sacrifices, kids, sacrifices.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Bands I Wish I Liked

-Crass: So punk, but so bad. I love everything about them except their music.
-Fucked Up: Mostly because the singer's bald and fat.
-Pavement: No cred for me, I guess.
-Melvins: I just can't back Buzz's voice.
-Jawbreaker: You don't remember them because you're not OG emo like me and my peer group.
-Pink Floyd: I like the whole idea of Syd Barrett and playing at a volcano, but then my good taste in music kicks in.

Thats all for now.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Random Shit

The new pad is infested... with helicopters.
Seriously. All the time (like, once a night, at least). The bastards are so loud one can't hear the television if the windows are open. What business does the ghetto bird have in Corona Del Mar? I want to know.

Speaking of infestations- bugs seem to be especially attracted to me lately, and it's gross. Spiders, beetles, the horde of wasps that has kicked me out of my preferred lunch area... Ridiculous. Mosquitoes have always been overly attracted to me, which is unfortunate due to my high level of reaction to them. The little fuckers nearly caused a nervous breakdown in France a few years ago, and are responsible for my hatered of the town of Nice (and, interestingly enough, my love of socialized French pharmacies).

Monday, July 28, 2008

Things I Like to Make Fun Of:

Because I'm an asshole, and am really quite funny.

-Overly concerned parents ("My Babies!")
-PT Cruisers
-People talking on their Bluetooths
-MySpace profiles
-Your favorite bands
-Jock culture: bros, brew-has, hoverload, brew-hos, lifted trucks, dirtbikes, wakeboarding, slutty girls with blonde/stripey hair, Huntington Beach, Riverside, Pennywise (ha, "Bro-Hymn," this shit writes itself), Social Distortion
-Heartwarming stories
-Sex In The City
-Bad taste in guitars
-Scene kids
-The Valuation of Adulthood

I think I'll stop there. This could've gone on forever.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Dear Matt Taibbi

Your articles show a wit, insight, intelligence, and analytical prowess that are incredibly uncharacteristic within the brutal journalistic abortion that is Rolling Stone Magazine.
You deserve better.


[See what I mean?]

Monday, July 21, 2008


Here's some lists I made based on where I grew up and where I live now.

5 Best things about growing up in Paso:
1. The splendid isolation of Hall Manor
2. Living far out of town forced me to nerd out (books, computers, guitars), and initiated a renaissance when I got the drivers licsense.
3. Oldest friends
4. Highschool shenanigans and/or hijinks.
5. Punk rock and skateboarding

Best things about living in Orange County:
1. Best beaches in America
2. Weather
3. Entertainment (including proximity to LA/SD)
4. Cleanliness
5. Employment

Best things about Corona Del Mar specifically:
1. Awesome shit in walking distance
2. Hearing the waves, sea lions and foghorns in the morning
3. The smoothest paved streets I've yet to experience=skateboard pleasure
4. Trees, grass
5. Thai Del Mar

Worst things about Paso:
1. People: white trash, lake rats, motocross bros, general brew-ha action, druggie ass meth burnouts, people from highschool I don't want to see at the movie theater over the holidays
2. Christian Conservative assholes
3. Heat. And Cold.
4.  The wine "industry"
5. Isolation

Worst things about Orange County
1. Christian Conservative assholes
2. People: white trash, lake rats, motocross bros, general brew-ha action, scene kids
3. Wealth and sense of entitlement
4. Weather
5. Music scene

Best restaurants in SLO County
1. Cafe Roma
2. Thai Classic
3. The new Italian place across from Boo Boo's
4. Tio Albertos
5. Big Sky Cafe

Best restaurants in my immediate area:
1. Thai Del Mar
2. Giorgio La Trattoria
3. El Matador (tied with) Great Mex
4. Native Foods
5. Bandera has fabulous pork loin

Worst towns in Orange County:
1. Laguna Hills/Aliso Viejo/Mission Viejo/Lake Forest faceless, culture-free staletropolis
2. Huntington Beach broverload/hoverload
3. Garden Grove, shit covered in shit, baked on asphalt
4. Fountain Valley, like above, but literally smelling of shit.
5. Fullerton should probably be reclassified as part of Riverside, but must remain free of too much scorn because Fender (and G&L) originated there.

Monday, July 14, 2008

Recent Happenings

Not too much, really.

-My Wolverine-like healing factor. After finishing some (eventually fantastic) Steak Au Poive in the oven, I grabbed the handle of my trusty All-Clad 10" fry pan, only to absolutely sizzle the palm of my left hand with the most painful burn I've ever experienced.After several hours of palming a cold beer bottle (the shape contours nicely to the palm, of course), and some neosporin the pain subsided, and the blisters were gone in less than two days. Under a week later, there is almost no evidence of the event. Such an injury would have healed on our old X-Man freind in mere moments, but I like to think I'm somewhere in between Wolvie and an average dude.

-iPhone firmware v2.0. As if enough hasn't already been written on the internet about this... I'll keep it short. The iTunes servers crashing at about 8 am friday moring left me phoneless until about 1 pm. But jesus, it was definately worth it. The apps already available are great, and they're only going to get great-er. If someone doesn't write a Pro-Tools/Logic wireless controller app and a Kaoss Pad/theremin emulator, I'm gonna have to learn to code it myself.

-The Dark Night. I've successfully avoided seeing all previews for the movie, except the one I couldn't avoid before (I think) Indian Jones ATKOTCS. I think I may be on to something here.

-Paul's Boutique. My current musical obsession- especially Looking Down The Barrel of a Gun. One hell of a jam, and pretty fuckin' gangster too. A whole album of miniature masterpeices.

-EBow. Finally got one, and it's super sweet. It seems to overdrive my pickups more than I remember the ones I've played in the past have. Maybe that's just because I'm doing it right now. The one problem is that it can't do chords, but that's what cello/violin bows are for.

-Freedom Guitar San Diego. What guitar shops are closed on Saturdays? Re-fuckin-diculous. Our Fender Showman finding mission was cut tragically short. At least we got to go to the zoo... Oh, wait.

-San Diego Zoo. Yes, I've confirmed my hunch that zoos are a major bum-out. Most of the animals looked really depressed- especially the lions, bears (Sun and Grizzly) and the elephants, which I found quite disheartening since San Diego is considerered to be quite an advanced establishment. I'd hate to see the zoos that aren't so generally well thought of. The gorillas seemed pretty impervious to the sweaty masses behind the glass, which was very cool. There was also a particularly active (and impressive) mountain lion- it chased after one small kid that ran by and totally stared down some other kid that was making growling noises at it. Had the majestic beast not been in a cage, the first kid would have been quite an afternoon snack. Awesome. They should let one zoo patron be devoured by a wild animal every year or so to keep everyone's respect level up. I think the San Francisco Zoo has already implemented this program.

-Fireworks from the porch. One of the many benefits of the new pad.

-Oh, and I almost forgot: The God Delusion. Can't put it down. My only critisicm is that I'm afraid I'll like it so much I'll finish it very quickly. Read it. Now.

Friday, June 27, 2008

It takes a special kind of asshole...

To wear one of those motorcycle helmet-mohawk things.
As if dicks speeding around on streetbikes weren't retarded enough anyway (prove me wrong- please), now they're trying to convince us that they're "edgy."
[edit: I proved myself wrong. Sorry Josh.]

Sunday, June 22, 2008

traffic blog

- 11 pm Sunday night
- 1+ hour
- >1mile
- 85 degrees
- Carson, CA

Saturday, May 31, 2008

My Guitar Genome

If you know me at all, you probably realize I spend between 50 and 99% of my time thinking about guitars. Sometimes I play them (but probably not enough). So I decided (cause I'm boring) to figure out why I play guitar the way (read: as badly as) I do, and here's what I came up with- in semi chronological order of influence, of course.

-Jimmy Page: because I am, and have been obsessed with Led Zeppelin since I was about 11 or twelve. I think I got most of my "sloppiness is cool" ethos from that occult-lovin' sonofabitch, and it's come in handy a time or two. Also helped me realize, at a early age luckily, what guitars (and records in general) should sound like, and how to make them sound like that. My desire for a Les Paul and an Orage is still based around watching The Song Remains The Same during my formative years.

-George Harrison, Lennon & McCartney: Songs, songs, songs. Open chords, composition, creativity, barre chords (after I got over my fear of them). More than I can understand.

-John Frusciante: Though I find most of it unlistenable now, in 7th and 8th grade I listened to Blood Sugar Sex Magik night and day. Admittedly, it's a pretty sleazy record for a young kid to listen to, which I thankfully realized early enough to keep it on the down low in regards to parental ears. But Frusciante has always been unbelievably talented. He tends to be kind of sloppy too, flowing in front of and behind the beat, which I latched on to. And his, dare I say, "funkiness" subconsciously interested me too. Also, his clean guitar tone is unfathomably perfect, as far as I'm concerned. Also probably the first time I laid eyes on a Fender Jaguar, too. Much later, after he rejoined RHCP and putting out tons of awesome solo records, he got even more influential to me. His acoustic playing and use of vocal harmonies are also very big chapters in my book.

-Kurt Cobain: You knew it was coming. Not only did Nirvana teach me (and everyone else, according to the lionizing press) that I could be in a band, but they instilled in my psyche- I think most importantly- that your guitar playing is only as good as your songwriting and vice versa. Oh, and POWERCHORDS. Growing up in a shitty, white trash, small-ass town severely limited my ability to get turned on to stuff like real punk records- but without Nirvana I wouldn't have know about them anyway. Thanks to following Nirvana's exploits I learned about a lot of my favorite bands: The Wipers, The Vaselines, Black Flag, Black Sabbath and Steve Albini. And guitars too: Jaguars, Mustangs (and Jag-Stangs), Mosrites/Univoxes, and Pat Smear's awesome Hagstroms.

[Here's the abridged version of the rest.]
-Lyle Preslar/Minor Threat: Hardcore.
-Sonic Youth: The greatness of noise.
-Operation Ivy: Shitty tone is cool. 
-Black Flag: Hardcore jazz noise.
-The Beastie Boys: Jamming is the world's worst term, but the most fun activity.
-Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers: The importance of studying the classics.
- Descendents: The greatness of real pop punk.
-Weezer: Is heavy. And Pinkerton is awesome.
-Refused: Add up all of the above and throw in more awesome, and some communism too.
-Foo Fighters
-Jimmy Eat World
-At The Drive In
-Drive Like Jehu
-Smashing Pumpkins
-The Hives
-Sunny Day Real Estate
-Nine Inch Nails
-The Get Up Kids
-Queens of the Stone Age
-The Stooges
-Joy Division
-The Darkness
-Frank Zappa

Friday, May 30, 2008

Ben Gibbard is the Mazda Miata of songwriting.

People who are into him think he's totally capable of taking on other sports cars- but he's really just underpowered and hopelessly cheesy. I'd just call him a pussy, but I'm no misogynist.
Not that I hate Death Cab- Transatlantacism is a super good record. The band itself is capable, and Chris Walla is mighty talented as a guitarist/instrumentalist/producer. But fuck- a song about glove compartments? Yes, I know it's a "metaphor," but it's still insulting to my intelligence.
Oh wait, it heart-on-the-sleeve songwriting.

I call bullshit.
"I will possess your heart?" Seriously? Come on dudes.

Moral of the story- I would punch the Gibster in the balls if he had any (but again, not a misogynist).

Friday, May 16, 2008

"Good artists copy, great artists steal."

I forget who said that. [Google update: it was Picasso. Sweet.]
Anyways, today, I'm attempting to steal the idea of "95% Albums" from Andy. And to make it my own, I'm titling it "95% Records." See what I did there? Creative, huh? Yeah, I know.
Just what the internets need- another douchebag pontificating on on music. Oh well. What else do I have to say? Unless you want me to ramble about the benefits of true-bypass vs. non true-bypass and buffered effects loops, or why 1970's Hagstroms are cooler than PRSes, this is what you get.

Coming soon:
Led Zeppelin III & IV (and I & II, and Houses of the Holy, and Physical Graffitti, and Prescence, and In Through the Out... Fuck. Nevermind. Led Zep (and The Beatles)=disqualified for being too good).
Refused: The Shape of Punk To Come...
White Stripes: White Blood Cells
Raconteurs: Broken Boy Soldiers
Weezer: Pinkerton
Wipers: Is This Real?
The Damned: Damned Damned Damned
Fugazi: In On The Kill Taker
Hot Snakes: Automatic Midnight
Nirvana: In Utero
Minor Threat: Complete Discography
Bad Brains: ROIR s/t
Descendents: Milo Goes To College
Queens of the Stone Age: Songs for the Deaf
Foo Fighters: The Colour and the Shape
Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds: Murder Ballads and Dig, Lazarus Dig!!!
UNKLE: War Stories
Beastie Boys: Check Your Head

Yeah, most of those are pretty obvious, but, you know... my apologies for having good taste. As I used to say: "I get paid for my good taste in music." (Actually, I don't anymore, but I did at the time.)

Thursday, April 24, 2008

On-going Goings-on.

Past week-or-so recap:

-There was a straight-edge documentary (narrated by Thurston Moore, which is funny for many reasons) on the National Geographic Channel. Pretty bad, by National Geographic standards, but pretty standard by straight-edge standards.

-Crazy backstage parties with the Lakes- you missed it, you're bummed.

-Chase and John came down- Chase ate my bagels, John regaled us with tales of expatriate life in Switzerland, and Dawn joined the three of us to experience the best and worst things about heavy metal. The Sword absolutely slayed, this band (I refuse to type their name) was the absolute definition of "unwitting joke," and I was blown away by Children, whom I had never heard before.

-Moving is progressing. Not as quickly as I'd like, but progressing nonetheless. Wanna see the new pad? If you want to send me any boxes, do so quickly.

-The Night Marchers and Flight Of The Conchords have new records out. Go buy them.

And last, but certainly not least, check this sweet myspace survey! [Sorry. I'm bored, and haven't even looked at one of these things for a looooong time. Props to Josh for originally posting it, and not hitting me in the balls anymore.]

Who was the last person of the opposite sex you had a texting conversation with?
Me telling Dawn I finally hired the movers.

Where is the last place you went out to eat?
Chipotle with Chase and John (see above).

What was the last beverage you consumed?
Italian Dark Roast with a splash of nonfat Coffeemate (I know, I know. But the nonfat kind actually tastes better than the regular kind and/or nonfat milk.

Thoughts at this moment?
Formatting on Blogger sucks.

Do you bite your lips a lot?
I actually just did while typing the above response.

Medicine, fine arts, or law?
Art. Is there anything else?

Best kind of pizza?
Ham and pineapple is serious business.

Favorite drink?
A well made cappuccino in the morning.

Do you miss anyone?
Various dudes, I suppose.

What were you doing at 11:59 PM on Saturday night?
Seeing Forgetting Sarah Marshall.

Who do you hate?
Most of the American public, neocons, outspoken religious people, the "President," people with bad taste in music... I could go on forever.

Who was the last person you had in your room?
I guess Dawn, but it's her room too.

Is your room clean?
Except for the large pile of laundry on my chair.

Can you speak another language?!
I create my own vernacular. Get hip.

What are you going to do tomorrow?
Work, food, pack boxes, watch Survivor, The Office, Scrubs, 30 Rock & Grey's Anatomy, play some gee-tar.

What is in store for your future?
Moving, in the immediate future.

Who was the last band you saw live?
The Sword (see above).

Do you take care of your friends when they are sick?
Sorry brah. Pass.

Do you like to read?

When was the last time you purchased something over $500?
Quite a while ago, I suppose, when a got a new amplifier.

Who is your favorite person to have a serious conversation with?
Serious conversations almost always consist of 90% bullshit.

What does your last incoming text message say?
"Nice!! Thank you for taking care of that."

When we lived in San Luis, Justin and I decided we needed sweet nicknames. He got Platinum Cobra, and I got Disaster.

Where do you want to go?
Australia, the South Pacific, Costa Rica, Mexico, London, Paris/Normandy, Florence/Rome, Japan, The Czech Republic, the former Yugolslavian nations, Boston, New York, Seattle, South Africa, India, Thailand, Scotland

What are you wearing?
T-shirt, jeans, adidas (alone in the office today).

What brand of digital camera do you own?

When is your birthday?

Where was the last place you slept other than your own bed?
My bed at my mom's house.

How do u feel right now?
Slightly hungry.

How many kids do you want to have?

Do you like coffee?
I fiend for good coffee.

Who was the last person to call you?
Dawn, last night.

What are you craving?
The new Orange OR-50 reissue, a Valvetech Hayseed 30, a Jazzmaster, a silverburst Les Paul Custom.

Whats the closest red thing to you?
2007 Form 1099-Misc.

What are you listening to right now?
Indie 103.1 fm

What is the last pill you swallowed?
Some intestinal flora-balancing herbal shit my mom gave me.

Do you smoke?
Smoking is for hipsters and white trash. Interesting paradox.

Is there anyone you would like to fight?
If necessary, I'll pull a blade.

Do you like somone right now?
Dumb question. Next.

Do you know what tofu is?
I've become familiar with it over the years, yes.

Have you ever eaten it?
A time or two. Or million.

Do you want to go back to middle school?

Have you ever watched the Britney Spears movie Crossroads?
Epic Fail, as internet nerds would say.

What did you do yesterday?
Worked, made a fantastic Mango Guacamole, made my ears ring, packed DVDs and books in boxes, watched Top Chef.

Who did you ride in a car with last?
Dawn, Chase & John.

Are you tired?

Who were you with last night?

Last movie you watched?
Sarah Marshall

Ever had a crush on a teacher?
Absolutely fucking disgusting. Never, ever ever.

Do you wish at 11:11?
Superstitions are for the weak-minded.

Contacts or glasses?

Do you play any instruments?
Any and all, with the exception of banjo and brass instruments, which I refuse to go near.

To cool for school?

any piercings? where?

Last person you hugged?
Dawn Bon Jovi

In the past 24 hours what did you do?
Fuck, I thought I already answered that.

Who/What made you angry today?
Nothing yet, bsides thinking about the state of affairs in the current world.

Do you download music?
In addition to the 60 or so records I buy a year? Yeah, whatevs.

Have you ever bungee jumped?

How many pets do you have?
1 cat/racoon/lemur/panda hybrid.

Ever had an antfarm?
I don't think I ever got around to adding the ants.

Has anyone you were close to passed away recently?
Thankfully no.

Where is the weirdest place you have slept?
Various blow up mattresses. I travel prepared.

What's the closest orange object to you?
The "Publish Post" button on Blogger.

What is your natural hair color?
Mostly darkish brown, for the time being.

Where was your default picture taken?
CA, Costa Mesa, Santa Ana Ave., my living room, the couch.

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Super Lame, dude.

-I hate Superman. This pretty much sums up why.

-Lots of new records lately, mostly new releases. 2008 is shaping up pretty well. Here is the shit I've spent too much money on lately:
-The Raconteurs: Consolers of the Lonely. It's definitely different than the Abbey Road + Led Zeppelin III glory of their first record, but, then again, the Beatles and Zeppelin aren't my only favorite bands (just the top 2), and The Raconteurs are certainly my favorite rock and roll band currently in business (I think, but odds are good I'll edit that later). Not better or worse (weeeeeell, maybe slightly not-as-awesome) as Broken Boy Soldiers.
-The Sword: Gods of the Earth. Certainly not as good as their first record. A good listen though. Dudes have been listening to Blood Mountain (awesome, btw) a lot and it shows. Could be worse though. They could've had Dragonforce in their cd players while writing the record. Thank god(s) they didn't.
-Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds: Dig, Lazarus, Dig!!! FUCK YOU, amazon.com, FUCK YOU. This is why I never preorder shit. The record I was most excited for this year, and it's at least 3 days late getting to me. It's one of the best Nick Cave records though, which, admittedly, is like saying one lung is better than the other. (Note: the only dvd I've ever preordered, There Will Be Blood, arrived before it's street date, but it's not like I can listen to that to and from work. Well, maybe it is...)
-Jonny Greenwood: There Will Be Blood ST. My obsession with the movie trumps my hatred for the "World's Most Revolutionary Band!" (or whatever Pitchfork and the general public [that is, the ones that "totally know good music"] is heralding them as these days). Plus, I harbor a secret desire to score films.
-Wire: Chairs Missing. You may have heard, I love Wire. Their remasters are the best in the business.
-The Vaselines: The Way of The Vaselines. Along with The Wipers records, something I've been meaning to pick up since, I don't know... 9th grade? Rationale: Kurt Cobain championed them.
Recounting a conversation between my 2 (also Nirvana-obsessed) best friends at the time:
Josh: "Hey Jeremy, I've got The Vaselines at my house!"
-The Evens: Get Evens. Rationale: I'm an Ian McKaye acolyte. Dare I say, though, I don't like it. I liked the first one, but this one seems like bad, political, pretentious hippie music, which is understandable.

[I spent all this time formatting this post, and blogger killed all my work. Fucked.]

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Basic Boring Update

-Moving May 1st: Moving in is fun, moving out sucks. Come visit me- four blocks from the beach! Gas stove, but no a/c (bummer).
-Ate waaaay too much last weekend, and played waaaay too much Smash Bros. (thanks Chase).
-Tax Time
-St. Patrick's day is horrrrrible. "Celtic punk" bands are horrrrrible.
-Toooooooo maaaaaaaany repeateeeeeeeed letteeeeeeeeersssssssss.
-Music stuff:
New Raconteurs today. GO BUY IT.
New Nick Cave in a week or two.
90's cover band (possibly) on the horizon.
Song Ideas (on the basis of possible audience appreciation):
Foo Fighters: Monkeywrench
Toadies: Possum Kingdom
Breeders: Cannonball
Radiohead: Creep
some Beck song that's not too hard to recreate live
Blind Melon: No Rain
Cranberries: Zombie
Semisonic: Closing Time
Fastball: The Way
some Smashing Pumpkins song
Everclear: Santa Monica
Folk Implosion: Natural One
Mazzy Star: Fade Into You
My Bloody Valentine (i wish)

Thursday, February 28, 2008

Going Back On My Word, Or, Overgeneralizing About Music and The Great Meat Experiment

Yeah, I know that's a sweet title for a post.
First things first:

1.Overgeneralizing About Music

I've said for years that I hate Ween. This is generally true, though it dawned on me today that there is one exception.
Buenas Tardes Amigo
I like to think of it as a collaboration between Inigo Montoya (you killed his father, prepare to die), Ennio Morricone (thanks, Captain Obvious), and Walter/Wendy Carlos (there is a definite Kubrick thing going on in the background tracks), but it's really just Ween. Trust me, it's a sweet tune with a ton of interesting layers. I believe I first heard this song years ago on a snowboard movie soundtrack (Peter Line's part), and I have, in fact, always liked it. Plus the Ween dudes get points for being on a Desert Sessions.
But they are still pretty fucking annoying otherwise.
And, like divine clockwork, a newer Radiohead song ("Bodysnatchers," according to iTunes) comes on the radio. And yes, I'm actually into it. Well, the bassline mostly. Thom Yorke fucking ruins the rest of the song, as usual.

And in case you were wondering (you shouldn't have been), here's some electro-ish jams I've been into these days:
-LCD Soundsytem: Someone Great [It sounds like an old song, but I haven't figured out which one yet.]
-MGMT: Time To Pretend [Good lyrics and Zelda-esque music- a winning combination.]
-Teddybears: Punkrocker [Actually, I've been into this song, hard, since last summer when Shelby turned me on to it. It is, as they say, "Awesome."]

2. The Great Meat Experiment
It's no secret to most that I was a vegetarian for a looooooong time. Seriously. Like 10+ years. But then I got bored. And started becoming obsessed with Anthony Bourdain. And curious. I never really had a reason for not eating meat (I don't particulary care about animals, except cats, and most people don't think they taste very good anyway). So, for 2008, it was on. Or off. Or Whatever.

And I'm not going back.
Mostly cause of shredded beef tacos. Here's the scorecard so far:
Mexican style shredded beef tacos/burritos, etc.: Fuck yeah.
Chicken: meh. Whatevs.
Pork/Ham: Good stuff, to be sure. I gotta get my hands on some prosciutto and some fine bacon (not Farmer John).
Steak: Kinda hard to cook, since my grill's broken, but still pretty good.
In-N-Out Burger: Not impressed. I prefer, taste-wise, In-N-Out grilled cheeses.

All in all, a success. Don't think I'm heading off to McDonalds anytime soon- this is a new opportunity for snobbery. But I still like to keep 'em guessing.

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Heads up, douchebags.

Beards aren't cool*. They haven't been for quite some time.
They don't make you "punk" or "indie," especially if you live in Brooklyn.
See also: short-brimmed hats**.
Oh christ! How could I (almost) forget all-over prints? Horrible.

[*Unless you're in Grinderman, or you are Zack Galifinakis.]
[**No, they are not called "fedoras" regardless of what you may think. It's a Trillby, motherfucker! Also, I am assuming you are not brain-dead enough to be wearing a Bowler.]

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Punk Again

My old school punk favorites (chronologically, of course):
-The Damned: Damned Damned Damned
I'm a bit obsessed with New Rose these days, but I love the whole damn record (btw: New Rose is the first "punk record," noobs). Damned Damned Damned slays the Sex Pistols and The Ramones simultaneously. Like I've said before, it's faster and more musically proficient than any other first wave punk band.
-Wire: Pink Flag
And then, in the same year, Wire created postpunk. Thank god. It's an unbelievable progression from all of the other Punk '77 bullshit.
-The Wipers: Is This Real
Admittedly, this started out as an entry entitled "The Strange Case of Greg Sage And The Wipers," but was abandoned prematurely, like most things my all-too-short attention span gets ahold of. It baffles me how someone can be so influential and so unknown at the same time. Points for songcraft, engineering skills and guitar heroics all go to Greg Sage. 

Friday, January 11, 2008

Fuck, man.

I've have really intense blogger's-block, which is probably a good thing.

In the meantime, I thought this was really funny:
Patton vs The Famous Bowl

(oooh, a Patton Oswalt link! How hipstery!)
Oh yeah, I really like Ratatouille, btw.

Thursday, January 3, 2008

What A Waste

Of the first blog of the new year.

[Note: for 2008 I'm going to start using the Tagging feature. Now I can instantly (and hopefully snarkily) judge every observation I make!]