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Tuesday, Dec 12, 2006

Everybody knows somebody who loves Michael Jackson.  Say what you will about ‘The King of Pop’ (it’s all been said before), you’ve gotta love his moves, or at least, someone you know does.  His transformations – as a singer, dancer, and boogie man—are captured in these singles which span his career from 1979’s “Don’t Stop ‘Til You Get Enough” to 1997’s “Blood on the Dancefloor”.  One side of the CD is audio; flip it over for the DVD and a kick-ass lesson in how to dance.  Each boxed set is numbered, giving this sharp little present that extra bit of caché. [Visionary: The Video Singles]


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Tuesday, Dec 12, 2006

At one time, Wonder Showzen was the new “it” phenomenon – a corrupted kid-vid concept brilliantly realized and abstractly insane. It was Pee Wee’s Playhouse if that magnificent man-child Paul Reubens’ porn store persona had run the show, a sensationally sick perversion turned into a proto-pedophilic playtime. After a brilliant first season, some feel that creators Vernon Chatman and Johnny Lee went overboard in series two, going for simple Red State targets with their unabashedly political take on Hee Haw, Horse Apples. But the fact is that no other recent series has taken on the sacred cows and untouchable taboos of our pro-child society as astutely and caustically as this definitive dada-esque satire. Get both DVD sets now before some state wises up and bans this genuine genius effort all together. [Amazon]


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Tuesday, Dec 12, 2006
by PopMatters Staff

Matthew Ryan
From A Late Night High Rise


“And Never Look Back”
“Babybird”


 


“From the first wave of symphonic keyboards to the last utterance of good advice FROM some accidental RF, From a Late Night High-Rise is a masterful rumination on mortality and morality. It’s an epic to behold.

 


Matthew Ryan has wandered around the edges for years now. Originally perceived as an alt-country troubadour, Ryan has slowly made his case for a more adventurous and cinematic American Singer/Songwriter. You get the feeling he doesn’t care much for anything that resembles a hollow victory. He’s clearly chosen the hard way. From major labels to small labels to indie labels to DIY and back again; he continues to follow some stubborn compass that keeps him quietly searching for his version of perfect weather in a song. All the while amassing a loyal following, a growing resume of film and television placements and a mountain of critical acclaim.

 


From a Late Night High-Rise is a movie without film, it’s a novel without a book. It’s absolutely beautiful, precise and unflinching. It’s music that glows like a city from high up in an airplane—first appearing alien, then blooming completely human. Shaken by the sentencing of his brother to 30 years in prison and the death of a dear friend, Ryan took to recording and writing songs on his Korg D16 Porta Studio to cope with his grief. “Follow the Leader”,“Gone for Good”, “Love Is the Silencer”,“Victory Waltz” and “The Complete Family” were all recorded at home. Those recordings were the seeds that would become From a Late Night High-Rise.”—00:02:59 LLC



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Tuesday, Dec 12, 2006

No other hour long drama had as much heart, humor and chutzpah as Here Come the Brides. Here was a series epic in its emotional resonance, and as cheery and breezy as a Pacific Northwest spring. While on the outside, Brides looked like a homage to the whole “barefoot and pregnant” school of thought, it was really an attack on the stifling status quo of the era (late ‘60s) in which it was made. Not only did it champion women’s rights years before the feminist foothold went mainstream, but it showcased the paternalistic male as a haughty, conceited softie at heart. It was a clarion call to arms in a simplistic, subversive package. Don’t believe it? Check out this pristine DVD presentation of the first season and decide for yourself.


 


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Tuesday, Dec 12, 2006

It is, perhaps, the most unlikely subject matter for a horror film ever devised. A group of homeless winos, led by an ex-Vietnam vet who takes his frequent homicidal flashbacks out on the surrounding populace, begin drinking a new cheap hooch that’s hitting the street. Unfortunately, one of Tenafly Viper’s liquor-laced drawbacks is the unfortunate side effect of personal putrescence. That’s right, one sip and you start to ‘bleed’ out in a multi-colored array of bodily fluids. A masterpiece made by fright film fans for fright film fans, Trash has long been unavailable on DVD. Last year, Synapse Films promised a new, fully tricked out edition, and they weren’t lying. This is, hands down, one of the best movies of the late ‘80s, given a proud near perfect post-millennial package. [Amazon]


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