Saturday, December 29, 2007


2008 is shaping up to be an interesting year for me. Among many other things, most of which aren't worth mentioning to the internet-at-large, I will be moving to Austin, Texas for several months beginning late January to take a job. I bring this up here because I will not have a reliable internet connection while I am living there, either where I'll be living or where I'll be working. This will make it harder to write things on the internet on a somewhat regular basis.

Now: I waste a shitload of time online, so this may turn out to be a good thing for me personally. I can make myself devote time to finishing a new Mathletes album, or riding my bike, or reading that Neil Young biography that someone loaned me six months ago, or finally learning to play the trumpet, or masturbating using nothing but the power of my imagination (and BOTH hands!), or taking naps, or learning to cook something besides eggs or pasta. The sky's the limit when you're not catching up on/held prisoner by hilarious YouTube clips of Saturday Night Live's The Best of Jon Lovitz.

I am still figuring out exactly what this means for this blog and anything else I do online. I promise to keep you posted as I figure out exactly what's what.

Friday, December 21, 2007

Top Fifteen New Television Shows of 2007

5. Crying With The Stars
4. Eat This Thing
3. I Can't Believe We're Having Fucking Sextuplets
2. Who Wants Some Dollars
1. Asshole Celebrity Children

5. The Ghost Frottager
4. Sex Cops
3. CSI: Yo' Mama
2. The Pretenderer
1. Law And Order: File Sharing Task Force

4. My Fat Stupid Husband
3. The Date Rapers
2. Eleven Minute ADD Stoner Cartoon
1. The Benny Hill Show (US)

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Top Twenty Songs of 2007

20. "Scream At Me (Cold)" by Painther
19. "Whiskey, Scotch and Liquor" by Johnny Rumbleseat
18. "At Least My Fish Loves Me" by Leave Grandpa Alone
17. "Do U Want (To Sit Wit' Me)" by Big Baby K
16. "Death" by Temple of Disgust
15. "(To Be Held By The Strong Tender Loving Arms Of) A Man Like You" by Jacqueline St. Croix
14. "Touch The Dragon" by Omega Horse
13. "Jumpy" by Lady Love (feat. Zoom Crew)
12. "A Pocketful of Chrysanthemum" by Flown Away With Whales
11. "Watch Me Touch It" by Fancy Fea$t
10. "Forget-You-Not" by The Crying Team
9. "Another Drink With My Buds (Part Two)" by Auntie Penultimate
8. "Clap (Your Hands)" by Turtle Birthday
7. "21st Century Lycanthropy" by High Crimes of the Modern City-State
6. "Cat Got Your Tail" by Judy Toot and the Pickles
5. "Everybody Say Party" by Fat Man & Li'l Boy
4. "Shouting At U" by Johnni James
3. "A Boat and a Pig and a Ten Farthings Ago" by Eliza Jane Maddox
2. "Ticklish (They're So)" by Deluxxxe
1. "Jeremy (Pearl Jam cover)" by The Bashful Swingsets

Monday, December 17, 2007

Top Fifteen Albums of 2007

Let's get alphabetical!

Apples in Stereo - New Magnetic Wonder (Hooks as big as a hippo)

Battles - Mirrored (Finally, a band where robots play the instruments AND write the songs)

Bring Back the Guns - Dry Futures (One of several Houston acts on this list; sort of like Pavement but angrier and shreddier, or Bossanova-era Pixies. Fifty pounds of ninja-sharp guitar hooks per square inch)

Deerhoof - Friend Opportunity (Their best album since their last one)

Fishboy - Albatross: How We Failed to Save the Lone Star State With The Power of Rock and Roll (Equal parts epic and miniature. Why aren't all albums concept albums? And why aren't all indiepop albums this great?)

Hearts of Animals - Lemming Baby (Amazing Casio-fried one-woman shoegaze band. I was never able to actually buy a copy of this, but I pretty much crashed the HoA MySpace page this year from replaying the songs. Amazing live, too)

Jana Hunter - There Is No Home (Timeless. She sounds like a ghost, but not a scary one. I don't know any better way of describing it)

LCD Soundsystem - Sound of Silver (Better than the last one!)

The Linus Pauling Quartet - All Things Are Light
(Heavier than Christ. Stoned-out Texas Psych riffing your face right off of your skull, leaving only a big-ass grin. Simultaneously the coolest album I heard all year and the dorkiest. Vinyl-only, but their last release was an mp3 CD-R with their complete collected works. Can't get much more 21st century than that)

Of Montreal - Hissing Fauna, Are You The Destroyer? (In the future, all rock stars will be elfin androgynes airing out their psychological laundry over plastic funk and sugar-bombed laptop pop)

Panda Bear - Person Pitch
(I never seem to be able to listen to any Animal Collective album all the way through, but I can't stop listening to this)

Radiohead - In Rainbows (A given. I got this off of a file sharing network; force of habit)

Sinkcharmer - Vegetable Farmer (This is the kind of album I wish I would get around to making already)

Something Fierce - Teenage Ruins 7" (PUNK! FUCKING! ROCK! the way it's supposed to be - fun, dirty, catchy and utterly joyous. The title track is about the most brilliantly anthemic three minutes I've ever heard)

Times New Viking - Present The Paisley Reich (Recording budgets are for assholes)

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Top Five DVDs I Bought in 2007

I'm not sure that any of these actually came out in 2007, but that's when I bought them. I got Netflix this year, but I'm only counting DVDs I actually physically own, just because.

5. The Flaming Lips - At War With The Mystics 5.1

So my friend Tamarie's ex-boyfriend gave her a surround sound system several years ago as a Christmas gift. This was apparently a bit of a turning point in the relationship; her reaction was basically "why would this guy think I want a huge ugly box and a bunch of wires cluttering up my apartment?". Two months later they broke up, and she gave the huge ugly box and bunch of wires to me. Note to guys: your girlfriend is probably not as much of a gadget geek as you are.

So anyway, that's how I ended up with a surround sound system, something I'd previously considered to be kind of silly and unnecessary. Leave it to the sound wizards in the Flaming Lips, just about my favorite band in the whole wide world, to get me to embrace crazy audio technology. I wasn't as enthused about their last album, At War With The Mystics, as I'd been about their other stuff, but having the crazy-ass 5.1 mix they did for the album explode all around me and shoot lasers through my head led me to appreciate it as a truly great achievement (the surround sound versions of The Soft Bulletin and Yoshimi Battles the Pink Robots are also words-fail fantastic). Bonus: It comes with the music videos they made for the album, a bunch of bonus tracks, and Wayne Coyne's address to an Oklahoma City-area high school's graduating class (see below). Fantastic.

4. Children of Men
Would have been higher on the list, but I bought it at Best Buy and didn't realize I was getting the full-screen version. Nominated for an Oscar for Cinematography, and I'm looking at the pan & scan version. I hate caring about shit like that. Anyway, this movie is incredible, a semi-post-apocalyptic dystopian fable disguised as a badass action flick. I love movies where the future is dirty and society is falling apart; gives me comfort that I'll probably be dead by the time all that happens for real. I don't care that I'm a year behind everyone else who raved about this movie: If you haven't seen it, you probably ought to, and if you have: I know, right???

I can't find a YouTube clip worth posting, but seeing as how I bitched about the full-screen thing just now, it'd be kind of weird for me to show a bunch of people a cell-phone quality blip of a gorgeously shot movie.

3. Gimme Gimme Octopus (Kure Kure Takora)
I found a bootleg DVD of this violent and quasisensical Japanese children's show from the 60s (no subtitles). There's about an hour's worth of shorts, but it's kind of upsetting the longer I watch so I'm not even sure I've seen them all. To describe it in any words other than the blurb on the DVD's case would be doing it a great disservice, so here it is: "An octopus and a peanut are in love with the same walrus".

2. The Dana Carvey Show
Another bootleg (courtesy like the last selection of Houston's own Domy Books, which has all kinds of amazing shit), this disc has five of the seven episodes that ever aired for this mid-90s network TV sketch show, one of the single greatest waste of potential in comedy history. The cast includes Carvey (who I'd remembered so fondly from a youth spent watching SNL reruns on Comedy Central) hamming it up amongst the likes of Steven Colbert, Steve Carell, and Robert Smigel. The writing staff includes those guys and Louis C.K., Dave Chappelle, Jon Glaser, Charlie Kaufman and Dino Stamatopolous. Between all those, you've got writers and/or performers from Mr. Show, The Daily Show, The Colbert Report, Being John Malkovich, Saturday Night Live, The Office, Adaptation, TV Funhouse, Chappelle's Show, Aqua Teen Hunger Force, Late Night with Conan O'Brien, and Eternal Spotless Sunny Face Brain. I think I even saw Mr. Show's Bob Odenkirk in the credits for one episode. What the fuck.

It's not so much that the show is bad; it's mostly just mediocre. As I said, Dana Carvey made me laugh a whole lot when I was younger, so the most I'll say about him is he's really, really, really proud of his celebrity imitations. Which is a bummer, because for every three forced Ross Perot bits, there's something like this:

They canceled the shit out of this one in a month and a half. I would've just fired Dana Carvey.

1. Tom Goes to the Mayor: Businessman's Edition

Tim Heidecker and Eric Wareheim, neither of whom are Dutch, are the most important thing to happen to comedy in the last five years. Or maybe the next five. Possibly both. The show is brilliant; apparently Cartoon Network received more hate mail about this show than any other Adult Swim program in history. I could write a term paper on why I like this show (and their follow-up, Tim and Eric: Awesome Show Great Job), but I will say this about them: they are better than anyone I can think of at using humor to make you legitimately uncomfortable, without resorting to the easy out of "boundary-pushing" offensiveness. As great as the show is, this DVD is worth it alone for the short film in the bonus features, where Eric fires Tim and replaces him with Michael Cera and Louie Anderson.

By the way: I didn't look very hard to find that clip I posted above; I probably could have found something a bit more uncomfortable to prove my half-baked point, but it's late and I'm tired. Tune in later this week for my top ten albums of the year, copy-pasted from

Friday, December 07, 2007

Top Five Films 2007

This is a tough one, as I only saw two movies from 2007 (one of them on my PC... thanks, bit torrent!). I am having to fudge the rules a bit for this list.

5. Pick a Winner

Featuring music by Lightning Bolt, White Mice, Wolf Eyes, and a bunch of other bands your parents don't like. This is available on DVD via Load Records, but they've made the entire thing available for free via that (admittedly low-res) YouTube clip above. Would have placed higher in this list, but I have never been able to watch more than 15 minutes without passing out.

4. King of Kong

Every time I start to feel stupid for caring deeply about stupid bullshit that doesn't matter, I will remember this film and I will be happy again.

3. "What is Wrong With You"

Loses points for not being an actual film, and being close to two decades old, and not even having been posted to YouTube within the last calendar year. Gains points for being my favorite thing of all time.

2. The Darjeeling Limited

Because even the worst Wes Anderson movie is better than basically any other movie.

1. "What is Wrong with You"

Oh, what the hell... I've gotta be true to my instincts.

Wednesday, December 05, 2007

I am going to do a bunch of year-end top ten lists, I think

Or maybe top five lists. Depends on how much I like things, and how many of them I like. I have some thinking to do.

I only saw one movie this year, so that's out. I like music a bunch... That'll probably make for at least a couple lists. I found out I liked a couple of foods I used to think were gross, but that's not really something I need to make a year-end list out of (food is not really all that topical, except in the sense that you need to eat it before it spoils). I guess I've got a couple weeks to figure this out.