Call for Essays About Any Aspect of Popular Culture, Present or Past

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Wednesday, Jun 28, 2006
by PopMatters Staff


Superman Returns


Releasing: 28 June 2006 (wide)
Cast:  Brandon Routh, Kate Bosworth, James Marsden, Kevin Spacey, Parker Posey
Director: Bryan Singer
PopMatters review: Superman Returns


The Devil Wears Prada



Releasing: 30 June 2006 (wide)
Cast:  Meryl Streep, Anne Hathaway, Emily Blunt, Tracie Thoms, Adrian Grenier
Director: David Frankel


Strangers With Candy



Releasing: 28 June 2006 (limited)
Cast:  Amy Sedaris, Stephen Colbert, Paul Dinello, Matthew Broderick, Sarah Jessica Parker
Director: Paul Dinello
PopMatters review: Strangers With Candy


Who Killed the Electric Car?



Releasing: 28 June 2006 (limited)
Cast:  Martin Sheen, Dave Barthmuss, Jim Boyd (II), Alec N. Brooks, Alan Cocconi
Director: Chris Paine



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Tuesday, Jun 27, 2006
by PopMatters Staff


FEATURED ARTIST
The Ark
It’s PopMatters’ favorite band of the year so far.  Direct from Malmö, Sweden… glam is back, baby.
“Clamour for Glamour” [MP3]
multiple songs [MySpace]
multiple songs [player]
PopMatters review: State of the Ark
PopMatters interview: State of the Ark
PopMatters live review: State of the Ark


The Ark - Clamour for Glamour


The Ark - Father of a Son


Talkdemonic:
“Mountaintops in Caves” [MP3]


Giardini Di Miro:
“Othello” [MP3]


Beautiful New Born Children:
“Do the Do” [MP3]


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Friday, Jun 23, 2006
by PopMatters Staff


The Dr. Octagon Chronicles


DJ ESE featuring Bisc1 “Perfect World” (Life During Wartime Mix)
[MP3]


The Return of Doctor Octagon, Chapter 8: Dj ESE & Bisc1 “Perfect World” (Life During Wartime Remix)


Rob Sonic, Mike Relm, The Gray Kid and the staff of OCD stood behind the front door staring at it. Behind them, staring along with them via webcam were the other members of the Decipher project. It was time for an epic battle, and they all knew it. They wanted to believe from everything that had happened that Dr. Octagon was trying to present mankind a path to a better world, and this pesky alien tribe of Gorillas was trying to prevent him, and so they must fight. But was it all that simple? The facts seemed so confusing. Yet, they knew the time had come…


Rob clutched his sledgehammer tighter. Mike slowly twisted his nunchuks. Gray Kid slipped his razor-edged money clips out of his pocket, into his hands. Behind them, the monitor screens stared back at the scene, but the people behind had disappeared.


Rob kicked open the door, and the battalion of vigilantes stormed the yard outside only to be greeted by the sweltering stillness of a late Los Angeles evening. No Gorillas in sight. Only darkness. Silence.


They headed to the curb and looked down the street to the west, into the ocean. A faint rumble could be heard as something emerged on the horizon. Hummers. Big, huge, gigantic hummers.


Disciple 908 was right: the Gorillas were headed straight for OCD HQ, presumably for the master recording in the mp3 player that appeared mysteriously eight weeks ago. The Decipher crew had not only lead the Gorillas right to it, but had now been drawn out, like pawns in a chess game, away from the very item they have sworn to protect. Mike Relm and Gray Kid raced back inside the building to retrieve the mp3 player and keep it guarded. Rob Sonic and OCD staff stood ready to face the oncoming onslaught when gusts of wind picked up around them.


Looking up, they saw a stealth bomber arriving, hovering high above them. Small figures jumped out of the airplane and sped toward the ground with jetpacks. Rob gave a sigh of relief when he realizes that its members of the Money Fight and Cassettes Won’t Listen. As Drake landed, he ran to Rob and explained, “That’s Kid Loco’s plane. He powers it with some strong skunk… damn that plane flies high and light!”


With the reinforcements, the Decipher crew’s morale surged and they gathered to barricade the building. The Hummers approached closer and closer. The crew held their positions. The first Hummer screeched to a halt in front of the building. The crew held their positions. The front doors opened… and out popped a brown hi-top sneaker with neon blue stripes. It wasn’t Gorillas - it was DJ Ese and Bisc1 of Embedded Music.


“We don’t have much time,” announced Ese. “My guy’s got a pressing plant locked down in Simi Valley - let’s get the masters there and dupe Dr. Octagon’s message a.s.a.p. With packaging, we can flood the streets with them in a few days. That’s going to be the only way we can protect ourselves from the Gorillas.” With cheers of approval, everyone piled into the Hummers as fast as they could. At last, the Decipher crew could commit, with fair certainty, that Dr. Octagon’s message was good, no longer evil, and must be disseminated widely towards the betterment of the world.


As they drove off, a lowly intern in the back of the last Hummer in the caravan, turned to look out the back window at the OCD HQ building for one last time. He gasped; “who is that boney figure on the rooftop? He’s wearing a labcoat with a stethoscope around his neck, and seems to be holding the head of some black hairy creature in his hand.” The intern shook his head and looked again…


Dr. Octagon had disappeared…

DJ ESE featuring Bisc1 “Perfect World” (Life During Wartime Mix)
[MP3]


Previous Chapters:
Catchdubs “Al Green” (Chapter 2, Verse 908 Remix)
[MP3]
“A Gorilla Driving A Pick-Up Truck” -  Kid Loco (Banana Loco Remix) [MP3]
Cassettes Won’t Listen “Aliens” -  Hearing Aid Remix [MP3]
A Gorilla Driving a Pick-Up Truck -  Rob Sonic Road Rage Remix [MP3]
The Gray Kid Al Greezy remix [MP3]
Al Green: The Gray Kid Al Greezy remix [MP3]
Mike Relm 20-minute Return of Dr Octagon megamix [MP3]


The Return of Dr Octagon hits stores June 27th.


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Thursday, Jun 22, 2006
by PopMatters Staff


Click


Releasing: 23 June 2006 (wide)
Cast:  Adam Sandler, Christopher Walken, Kate Beckinsale, David Hasselhoff, Sean Astin
Director: Frank Coraci


Waist Deep


Releasing: 23 June 2006 (wide)
Cast:  Tyrese Gibson, Meagan Good, Larenz Tate, The Game, H. Hunter Hall
Director: Vondie Curtis Hall


The Great New Wonderful


Releasing: 23 June 2006 (limited)
Cast:  Tony Shalhoub, Edie Falco, Maggie Gyllenhaal, Olympia Dukakis, Tom McCarthy
Director: Danny Leiner


Leonard Cohen: I’m Your Man


Releasing: 21 June 2006 (New York)
Cast:  Leonard Cohen, Nick Cave, Rufus Wainwright, Beth Orton, Jarvis Cocker (II)
Director: Lian Lunson


The Road to Guantanamo


Releasing: 23 June 2006 (limited)
Cast:  Rizwan Ahmed, Ruhel Ahmed, Asif Iqbal, Shafiq Rasul, Farhad Harun
Director:  Michael Winterbottom, Mat Whitecross


Say Uncle


Releasing: 23 June 2006 (limited)
Cast:  Peter Paige, Kathy Najimy, Anthony Clark, Gabrielle Union, Melanie Lynskey
Director:  Peter Paige


Wassup Rockers


Releasing: 23 June 2006 (New York)
Cast:  Jonathan Velasquez, Francisco Pedrasa, Milton Velasquez, Usvaldo Panameno, Laura Cellner
Director:  Larry Clark



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Wednesday, Jun 21, 2006
by PopMatters Staff


The Eighteenth Day Of May —"Hide + Seek"
From The Eighteenth Day of May on Hannibal Records
The debut album from London-based band The Eighteenth of May is a unique, refreshing and thoroughly modern take on traditional folk music. Recently released in the UK to much critical acclaim, the band now find themselves at the forefront of the emerging UK "neo-folk" scene.



Portastatic —"Lively Chase"
From the Original Film Score for Who Loves the Sun on Merge Records
Mac McCaughan is an immensely talented songwriter. He first gained fame in the late 80’s and early 90’s as front man and principal songwriter for the rock band Superchunk. In the mid-90’s Mac also formed Portastatic as an outlet for all the material he was writing that did not fit the Superchunk mold.



Black Heart Procession —"Not Just Words"
From The Spell on Touch and Go Records
The Spell is the most fitting name yet for a Black Heart Procession record. Spells are cast over a person, a love affair, a nation, a world; they enchant and entrap, disorient and delude. They are the heart of this record, both the webs they spin and the snap that occurs when they’re broken. And there is no better word to describe the spooky intoxication of The Black Heart Procession’s sound.   



Shapes and Sizes—"Wilderness"
From Shapes and Sizes on Asthmatic Kitty
From Canada’s misty Pacific Southwest emerges Shapes and Sizes, fully formed and self-defined, yet redolent with future promise. Shapes and Sizes’ melodic pop inhabits a world of beauty, noise, whispers, and elusive, contradictory moods, where the dynamic of a steam piston gives way to elegiac understatement, often within one song.


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