Friday, September 30, 2005


Here's a newie from rx's website, All the songs feature hilarious, ingenious cut-ups of Bush and his cronies set to toe-tappin' tunes, and "White Lines" is no exception - yup, the old Grandmaster Melle Mel rap classic gets a juiced-up arrangment, as dubya rocks the mic, adding some startling new lyrics about Kate Moss in the process. As always, one has to wonder how many hours went into sifting through GW's speechs, isolating words, and pasting them together.

rx: "White Lines"

Wednesday, September 28, 2005


I had one of those "awwww, that's too bad" moments the other day when I heard about the death of Don Adams. Growing up, I loved watching him play the bumbling spy Maxwell Smart, a character he played off and on in movies and tv shows for several decades. But Adams was more than Smart - he had a very succesful comedy and stand-up career before "Get Smart," recording albums like "Don Adams Meets The Roving Reporter."

Don Adams: "The Finkston Trio" - would you believe...a funny, strange parody of early Sixties musical styles like folk, doo-wop and "Monster-Mash"-type Halloween novelties, all rolled into one.

Monday, September 26, 2005


Matthew Herbert, veteran electronic music producer and remixer going back to the early '90s house days, has a new album, "Plat de Jour," whose sounds are largely made using food - quothe this BBC article: "Sugar" is made entirely from sounds generated from a can of Coke...while "The Final Meal Of Stacey Lawton" is made from the sound of his pal, Heston Blumenthal, recreating the last meal of a death row prisoner (a jar of pickles)." I'm not exactly sure how these items were used to make the music, but it has something to do with the wonders of sampling struck objects.

We've already covered other groups that use food here, like The Wyld Men and The Vienna Vegetable Orchestra. Y'know how first there was hardcore, then other terms like cuddle-core, lounge-core, etc? This stuff could be called "apple-core."

Or not. Anyway...

Matthew Herbert: "Esme’s Waltz" made from the following ingredients:
- Dry coconut
- Eden organic grape juice in a glass bottle (Germany)
- Organic peanuts in a plastic bag
- Mount Hagen decaffeinated, organic coffee in a glass jar with a plastic top (Germany)
- Two out-of-season apples

Friday, September 23, 2005


Singing Sadie sounds crazy. This Australian one-woman-show sings in an out-of-control voice that doesn't always hit the "right" notes (but they're usually close enough) humorously dirty lyrics over old big-band records. And then, maybe half-way thru each tune...she tap dances. Well, she tries. It's kind of the dancing equivalent of her singing, like someone randomly dropping silverware on a hard floor. Her debut 4-song EP is called "Songs For Swingers." And she's finally swung her way here to America, where she'll be performing live on Irwin's show on WFMU next week (Wed., 2:00pm Eastern Time). Prepare thyself for:

Singing Sadie "Let's Call Her Lil"

Wednesday, September 21, 2005

Hey, I Got A Theremin For My Birthday

I actually did, a Moog Ethervox, to be exact. Doesn't get any cooler then that. Makes me wanna listen to stuff like Project: Pimento, "...a five-piece band from San Francisco, with a repertoire of toe-tapping lounge favorites from the 40s, 50s, and 60s," fronted by sulty singer Miss Lola Bombay and featuring thereminist Dr. Robby Virus.

"Star Trek"
"Call Me"

From their album, "Magical Moods of the Theremin."

Saturday, September 17, 2005

The Return of Dictionaraoke

In 2001, Chicago's Jima had an interesting idea. On-line dictionaries, like, say, Merriam-Webster's website, have audio pronunciation guides - look up a word and you can click on a sound file of an announcer actually pronouncing the word. What if you sampled lots of these words and strung them together in a song? The result was dictionaraoke: "Audio clips from online dictionaries sing the hits of yesterday and today," over instrumental music often provided by cheezy karaoke backing tracks. The contributors were mainly members of the Negativland mailing list.

Over the years, many of the links were broken, but the entire project has been revived and hosted by The result is hours of deadpan, robotic amusement like:

pimpdaddysupreme: Cameo's "Word Up"

Animals Within Animals: "Nuthin' But a 'G' Thang
" - Who knows how many hours (days?) it took to make this remarkable remake of Dr Dre and Snoop Doggy Woggy's hip-hop hit.

Wednesday, September 14, 2005


Thanks to reader Slapdash for pointing us towards yet another band that uses hand-held video games. This time it's German combo Pornophonique, mixing acoustic guitar and vocals with Gameboys to nice effect.

Pornophonique: "Sad Robot"

Tuesday, September 13, 2005

FEMA For Kidz Rap!

Hey kids! You know about FEMA, right? Yes, America's Federal Emergency Management Agency, the one that's supposed to be taking care of the Hurricane Katrina disaster! Well, they've got a funky-fresh rap song on the FEMA For Kids section of their website. Remember now, gang, "Disaster prep is your responsibility/And mitigation is important to our agency."

"Mommy, what's "mitigation" mean...?"

FEMA For Kidz Rap

That's some hi-fi sound quality, eh? Blame budget cuts...

Saturday, September 10, 2005


Further evidence of the random nature of the universe: Country music legend Willie Nelson has recently released...a reggae album. The entire album, "Countryman," is reggae, complete with dub effects, a guest appearance by the legendary Toots Hibbert (of Maytalls fame) and covers of reggae classics like "The Harder They Come". But Willie's mainly singing his usual heart-breakin' country stuff, complete with traditional instrumentation (like the lonely cry of a steel guitar) alongside the Jamaican sidemen dropping their riddems. It all sounds like some wacky dj's country/reggae mashups - the dichotomy between the two styles is funny and bewildering. But, hey, Willie does partake of the sacred herb. So maybe the two cultures have more in common then we think...

Willie Nelson "How Long Is Forever"

Speaking of the ganja, America's biggest (and most conservative) retailer Wal-Mart didn't appreciate Willie's artworK - an alternate cover had to be created just so the Kansas housewives wouldn't be offended. But Willie's feeling too irie to get upset:
"They're covering all the bases," Nelson joked."

Friday, September 09, 2005

“George Bush Doesn’t Care About Black People”

Well, that was fast! Yesterday, Houston hip-hop crew K-OTIX (a.k.a. The Legendary K.O.) posted a wickedly funny parody of Kanye West's "Gold Digger," taking Kanye's intrumental (and his now-infamous tv comment), and added their own vox/lyrics. The orignal's chorus of "Get down girl, go 'head get down" is now a plea to: "Come down George, come on, come down."

The Legendary K.O.: “George Bush Doesn’t Care About Black People”

The Black Lantern has made a video.

Wednesday, September 07, 2005

The Christian Astronauts

This gets my vote for least-likely (but most welcome) CD reissue of an an obscure vinyl release:

"Fans of small town, grass-roots productions will delight in this wonderful outer space childrens album produced by the Fremont, Ohio-based Shoup family back in 1971...Captain Shoup, the father of this family act led the Christian Astronauts on a decade-long career spanning the entire 1970s...the family filmed over 300 episodes of Beyond the Blue, a cable TV childrens ministry. We're told each episode was filmed inside an elaborate space ship set, custom-built by the Captain. Besides Rick and Michelle (siblings), Sister Shoup (mom), and Jerry (the space dummy), the production starred a 7 foot tall robot named Loosenut, equipped with flashing eyes and moving arms."

From the album "Beyond The Blue" by the Christian Astronauts (mp3s on bottom of page):

"Prepare to Fire" an introductory skit, featuring home-made sound effects, and a robot who speaks with the same voice as the Captain
"Countdown" Sister Shoup's wobbly singing, accompanied by even wobblier organ

Wait a minute. Weren't The Shaggs also from a town called Fremont? Hmmm...


Yesterday, we talked about Poland's Gameboyzz Orchestra Project. Well, whatdayaknow, there's more music played on hand-held video games out there. Thanks to bomarr for heppin' us to Oakland, CA's Passage, an indie-hip-hop act who has recorded at least one GameBoy tune:

"West World or Wheels"

Tuesday, September 06, 2005

The Gameboyzz Orchestra

The Gameboyzz Orchestra Project is a six-person group from Poland who do exactly what it says on the tin - make music using hand-held video games and nothing else. Darn good stuff, too. It's amazingly musical, with tight arrangements, some tunes bursting with danceable energy, others more abstract and experimental.

Musically, they recall the electronic melodic sense of Kraftwerk. Sometimes it's almost techno, but non-ravers have no fear: lacking a boomin' bass, they relay on rich textures instead. As they say:

"Console's interface is rather poor (few buttons only), so sound structures created by us must be rather simple, too. This is also the reason for having 6 players - the more players the sound environment is more complex."


Sunday, September 04, 2005


Yeah, you right! We gonna pass a good time right now with some classic funky N'Awlins r'n'b from the '50-'70s. If you don't know nuthin' about these legendary artists and tunes, this here's your beginners guide. Turn it up, the Crescent City's here to stay!

Fats Domino "I'm Walkin'"
Joe "Boolagloo" Jones "You Talk Too Much"
Professor Longhair - "Tipitina"
Dirty Dozen Brass Band - "Junko Partner"
The Dixie Cups "Iko Iko"
The Meters "Cissy Strut"
Dr John "Basin Street Blues"
Neville Brothers "Big Chief"
Clarence "Frogman" Henry - "Ain't Got No Home"
Frankie Ford "A Certain Girl"
Ernie K-Doe "Mother-In-Law"
Lee Dorsey "Everything I Do Gon' Be Funky"
Irma Thomas "Break-A-Way"
The Wild Magnolias "Soul Soul Soul"

If y'all find these tunes as tasty as a bowl of file gumbo, send a few coins over to The Red Cross, and, like Mrs Fab did, The Louisiana SPCA for all them critters. Then there's the Preservation Hall Hurricane Relief Fund established by Preservation Hall, home of the legendary trad-jazz band, to provide musicians with financial support. 100% of money raised through this fund will go directly to New Orleans musicians.

Laissez Le Bon Temps Roulet!

Friday, September 02, 2005


Last time I was in New Orleans, our cab drive casually mentioned that the nightclub we just passed in the French Quarter was Gennifer Flower's place. Her rich husband got it for her so she'd have somewhere to sing her sultry jazz ballads.

Gennifer-with-a-G-Flowers? One of President "Pimpin'" Clinton's mistresses? A nightclub singer? This we had to see. The next night she was scheduled to perform we went down to The Kelsto Club and found her looking resplendent in a white gown. Her mother was there as well. I approached her with Mrs Fab's 35mm camera and asked for a picture. She gravely eyed me, and asked, "Who are you with?" I was a bit taken aback: "I'm with...myself." She turned down my request and I slunk back to our table.

Later, she joined our table and explained that our camera looked so professional she assumed that I was a tabloid photographer, but after seeing us drinking and socializing she realized we were regular folks and happily posed for pics. I bought a drink that came in a souvenir shot glass shaped like red lips. And a fine time was had by all.

Sorry, no mp3s for y'all this time - don't think she recorded anything. Even her website is down. It was up the other day...