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28Mar2007 1800: Spent

This post stands between me and more God of War 2, so sue me if I go too fast. My site host Nearly Free Speech.Net warned me about my account balance two days ago, which means that the $15 I put in nearly 13 months ago was finally running out. Except...not really. It was a $3 warning. Seems like a fair price for what you're getting here.

Music time! [Jesse & Joy - Espacio Sideral] is a jaunty little pop-rock tune that I would love to understand, but in the chorus I can just pretend they're singing about Superman...I assume that's the "Sideral" I'm mishearing.

[Lusine - Make It Easy (John Tejaca Remix)] put up red flags immediately. A song with (So-and-so Remix) in the title usually means a barely-passable melody got chopped up into little bits and put over a drum loop, and it's rare indeed that such a thing turns out well. This track is helped by the fact that I don't know the original song, and the electronic stuff is soothingly similar to SNES and Genesis sound creations. I can picture this at the title screen of a 16-bit game that nobody played, mournfully blinking "Press Start" at a room full of ravers pretending to feel the beat. The 6:21 runtime is a big pill to swallow, though.

[Brick & Lace - Never Never] makes me glad I'm not some urban 15-year-old girl. And no, smartass, they're not the only reason. This song embodies 41% of what I hate about radio today. DELETED.

23Mar2007 1854: Harsh Words!

Today is a great day for linguaphiles. This Penny Arcade is goddamn hilarious and a good indication of where I want Semantic Princess to go. Words! Words are great; I played Bookworm Adventures for hours at a time. I really only bring that up because another puzzle/RPG hybrid has exploded upon the scene: Puzzle Quest. It is Bejeweled with Magic Missile. It is incredibly endearing. It's not quite about words but you definitely need words to play.

22Mar2007 0855: New/Old Music

This week has a couple decent free iTunes tracks. [Ojos de Brujo - Sultanas de Merkaillo] isn't something you absolutely have to download, as it will make an appearance in the next Hollywood movie set in Mexico. Probably something by Tarantino. But [Shawn Lee's Ping Pong Orchestra - Kiss the Sky] is great retro 70s fun, coupled with a pretty good band name. It is not a Hendrix cover or anything, it's what industry players might call "a mellow funky groove" and then something about "hooks". Honestly that's why I have trouble reading the iTunes summaries; it's why I started writing these in the first place.

I've never seen Yu-Gi-Oh but I feel like I have.

17Mar2007 1957: Black Snake Moan a hell of a flick. Morgion beat me to the review:

since i am lame and have no forum for expression, could you put a plug for me onto, in the spirit of the good-ole gerbilmechs days, when you talk about black snake moan?

it's a feel-good movie about redemption through bondage and stealth musical numbers. the sleeper hit of the bondage musical genre; I can't wait until it gets to Broadway.

you can even include the "i am lame" bit. ;-)

Done and done!

It really was a fantastic movie, not least because Christina Ricci is nearly naked through the entire thing. Oh shit. No. Wrong pic. Here. And I can almost respect Justin Timberlake for his role; if you squint, he looks like an actor. And there was a preview for that Bourne Identity clone starring Marky Mark. I escaped the clutches of pop radio years ago and now it has come to hunt me down!

The music that everybody gushes about seemed abbreviated for the movie. There was none of the extended blues jamming I've come to associate with the genre; Samuel L Jackson gets into the song, says his three verses, and ends it right quick. I didn't think I'd ever say this, but it makes me want to see Part One of what is apparently the writer/director's trilogy of Tennessee Music, Hustle & Flow. It won an Oscar, it can't be that bad.

15Mar2007 2145: Nostalgia

This is what the Internet is for. There's a tsunami warning in Fargo as a powerful wave of nostalgia is approaching from the mid-80s. OH GOD I JUST GOT TO 16:00.

14Mar2007 1905: Black Sheep

Baaaaahahahaha this movie is going to be awesome. Here's hoping it can stand alongside the last almost-but-not-quite-bad cheesy horror flick I saw.

Speaking of awesome movies, 300 seems to be universally loved, which means that 38% of these critics are actually aliens from some other universe. It delivered on the high-concept of "Spartans stabbing Persians in slow motion" that the trailer promised, and it also throws in some cliche "trouble back home" that somehow doesn't overstay its welcome. I'd recommend this to any action movie fan or visual effects buff, but I don't think it'll have a lot of staying power. I'm not planning to buy the DVD.

The new Spider-Man 3 preview before 300 makes me worry, though. I remember the first teasers last year, featuring a heavy dose of Sandman and some Emo-Parker. Then a new wave of publicity showed us more of Symbiote Spiderman and the second Green Goblin, with little bits of Sandman and relationship stuff. Now the 300-borne trailer has lots of "I'm marrying Mary Jane" and lots of Venom/Symbiote, with a dash of Green Goblin. Notice what's missing? There was no Sandman! His whole subplot was completely gone. I had thought that the movie would be mostly Sandman and Symbiote with some Venom setup for the next sequel, but now it appears that they're going to shoehorn in three villains. Isn't that half of what killed the first Batman franchise? It's possible that Green Goblin only has the two fight scenes that they keep showing in trailers, and I guess that would leave enough time for the other two, but it seems overly ambitious to go from some well-made single-villain movies to a crowd like this.

Free music time! I don't understand a word of [Kinto Sol - Jose el Azteca], but that's ok. It gets my head bobbing just a tiny bit, so I think I'll keep it around. Rap is always cooler in a language you don't understand.

[Tomboy - Synchronize] started out with the dancey beats and vocoder crap that gets on my nerves, but then the chorus kicks in with the chick singing and it's all better. This has been spared the trash bin, but for how long?

I initially thought that iTunes was trying to trick me with [Brandi Carlile - The Story]. The picture of Brandi looked like any other over-produced pop star, and the official song blurb mentioned something about her country music career, but the song was labeled "rock". For the first minute of the song, I was sure I had been duped. Then it finally kicked in and I'm glad I waited. Her voice does something that reminds me of Nancy Sinatra and the music has enough electric guitar to distance itself from country...or does country use electric guitar these days? Keeper, and possibly four stars.

08Mar2007 2201: So Soon?

AOIHAD ASDLF there's a new Platinum Grit! Now with 20% more Watership Down!

08Mar2007 1801: Baconnigan's

No, this isn't the announcement of my Spring Baconnal. This is to inform everybody that Bennigan's won't substitute bacon for ham on their Monte Cristo, even if you ask really nicely. I hope it is because Bennigan's sandwich researchers fear the possibility of a runaway tastesplosion and not because the cooks are lazy.

Free music time! [Test Your Reflex - Pieces of the Sun] brings me back to a time in the early 90s when I still listened to radio. This song has that same pleasent but unmemorable vibe of the Goo Goo Dolls and Soul Asylum that haunted my high school. Three stars for the nostalgia!

[Joshua James - FM Radio] is a quiet little folk song that is dripping with "folksy" and other possibly-positive adjectives. It's moist, is what I'm saying. It sounds like James Taylor only because people will know who I'm talking about and not because Joshua James is anywhere near as good as James Taylor. But it's short and doesn't get lost in some acoustic wankery midway through, so...kudos?

[Sonora Carruseles - Boogaloo Chevere] (Traditional Mexican Horse Dance) is a must-have for wooing your special ladyfriend with the romantic atmosphere of a Paradiso. This is the kind of music that Hollywood would use in a scene of a plane landing in Tijuana for Spring Break hijinks involving a sassy monkey and a B-list standup comic.