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Tuesday, Jul 10, 2007

Critically acclaimed film director Werner Herzog constantly pushes the envelope, requiring audiences to see a new, original light upon an old story. He told a tale of rebellion with a cast of only midgets and dwarves in Even Dwarves Started Small, and illustrated the effects of poverty with Klaus Kinski’s brilliant, yet haunted acting in Woyzeck. Based on Herzog’s 1997 documentary, Little Dieter Needs to Fly, Rescue Dawn tells a tale of the Vietnam War without the use of special effects, relying on only what the director can create with his own two hands, a stunning difference from the plethora of motion pictures.


Behind the scenes look at Rescue Dawn:


Interview with Henry Rollins:



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Monday, Jul 9, 2007

Spanning the distance from children’s music to alternative rock, They Might Be Giants captures the attention of their audience with their unique brand of music. TMBG, consisting of John Flansburgh and John Linnell, gave us hits such as Birdhouse in Your Soul and Don’t Let’s Start as well as Particle Man and Doctor Worm. Their latest album, The Else, will be released on July 10th, 2007.


The 1989 hit, Ana Ng:



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Friday, Jul 6, 2007

Comedian Patton Oswalt’s career has reached celebrity status, but his comedic presence has not waned. His most famous roles consist of Spence Olchin on The King of Queens and Rémy in the new animated feature Ratatouille. As a comedian, he started the Comedians of Comedy tours and Comedy Central series, bringing together comics such as Brian Posehn, Zack Galifianakis, Maria Bamford, and himself. On July 10th, 2007, Patton will be releasing his second comedy album, Werewolves and Lollipops.


Link to a track off his new CD: The Dukes of Hazzard


Appearance on Late Night with Conan O’Brien:



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Tuesday, Jul 3, 2007

Seventy-eight years ago, Belle Miriam Silverman was born in Brooklyn, New York. By the age of seven, she already acquired a singing career, winning a “Miss Beautiful Baby” contest, performing on the radio show, Rainbow House, and singing in Uncle Sol Solves It. By 1939, the former Silverman changed her name to Beverly Sills, and became a frequent guest on Capital Family Hour. In 1947, Sills performed Frasquita in Bizet’s opera, Carmen, launching her long-lasting operatic career.  By 1958, she performed as Helon of Troy in Mefistofele, Rosalinde in Die Fledermaus, and the title role in The Ballad of Baby Doe. On November 17th, 1956, Sills married Peter Greenough, journalist for The Plain Dealer.


In 1966, Sill’s performed as Cleopatra in Giulio Cesare, earning her international fame. She soon began to record her operas: Giulio Cesare, Roberto Devereux, Manon, Lucia di Lammermoor, and The Tales of Hoffman. Sills then won praise singing Grossmachtige Prinzessin in 1969. Later that year, she debuted as Pamira in The Siege of Corinth, placing her on the cover of Newsweek. In 1971, Time magazine put Sills on the cover, describing her as “America’s Queen of Opera.” In 1975, Sills debuted at the Metropolitan Opera in The Siege of Corinth, leading to her future performances in Thais, La Traviata, Don Pasquale, and Lucia di Lammermoor. Later, Sills began to publicize opera, appearing on talk shows and becoming a recitalist.


Sills retired as a singer on October 27, 1980 at the New York City Opera, soon becoming its general director. In 2002, she became the chairman of the Metropolitan Opera, keeping the position until 2005 because of family problems. Her husband, Greenough, died on September 6, 2006. Less than a year later, Sills was diagnosed with lung cancer, leading to her death on July 2nd, 2007, at the age of 78.



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Monday, Jul 2, 2007
by PopMatters Staff

Through The Sparks —"Mexico (Every Last Buffalo)" From Lazarus Beach on Skybucket Records Upon the realization that they were sitting on a library of songs and ideas, and with multiple songwriters in the band, Through the Sparks pooled their pile of beat-up pianos and organs, 8-tracks and a Protools rig, and formed Alamalibu Studios, the band’s heavily fortified, though often transient, music-making space in Birmingham, Alabama. The band released an EP titled Coin Toss and a limited edition collection of early recordings, AudioIotas, during the first year and a half of its existence, both released on Skybucket Records. They’ve recently completed their first full-length release for Skybucket, while playing as many shows as the recording schedule allowed.


The Ladybug Transistor —"Three Days From Now" From Can’t Wait Another Day on Merge Records The album features spirited contributions from members of Aislers Set, Architecture in Helsinki, The Clientele, Jens Lekman, Kevin Barker (Currituck Co., Vetiver), Heather McIntosh (Circulatory System, Instruments) Roy Nathanson (Lounge Lizards/Jazz Passengers) and others. The first fruits of these sessions were heard on 2006’s Here Comes The Rain EP.


Nadir—"Slave (Distorted Soul Album Version)" From Slave: The Remixtape on Bikiniwax Church-trained, Southern bred, reborn urban dread, Nadir (meaning “rare and unique”) is a clear and resonant voice of cultural change. Singer/songwriter, producer and activist Jonah Nadir Omowale brings us an undeniable musical message, steeped in both tradition and innovation. His music, called Distorted Soul, is a revolutionary soul music hybrid that incorporates elements of funk, electronica, r&b, soul, house, rock, jazz, folk and hip-hop “in such a delectable manner that his musical renditions are certain to satisfy and musical palate.”


The Foundry Field Recordings —"Transistor Kids" From Fallout Stations EP on Emergency Umbrella Records Fallout Stations is the limited edition, companion EP to The Foundry Field Recordings debut full-length Prompts/Miscues. It contains new songs, rarities, and highlights directly relating back to the concept album.


Rasputina—"Cage In A Cave" From Oh Perilous World! on Filthy Bonnet Recording Co.
Oh Perilous World! the sixth full length album from chamber-rock trio Rasputina was performed by the band’s creator Melora Creager and drummer Jonathon TeBeest with second chair Sarah Bowman contributing additional vocals. Creager wrote the songs featured on Oh Perilous World! over the last two years after deciding current world events were more bizarre than anything she could scrounge up from the distant past. She obsessively read daily news on the Internet, copying words, phrases and whole stories that especially intrigued her. She compiled a vast notebook of this material from which the Oh Perilous World! lyrics are culled.


Shout Out Louds —"Tonight I Have to Leave It" From Tonight I Have to Leave It on Merge Records
“Tonight I Have to Leave It” is the first single from Stockholm’s Shout Out Louds upcoming Merge full-length, Our Ill Wills [Sept. 11, 2007]. With a video for the title track, two remixes and two non-LP “b-sides” this is a great reintroduction to a Swedish band whose extraordinary 2005 debut, Howl Howl Gaff Gaff (Capitol) garnered worldwide critical acclaim and placed them squarely in the middle of the current Swedish pop explosion.


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