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Thursday, Jan 14, 2010
PopMatters' writer Evan Sawdey has spent the better part of 2009 creating a tribute album for a songwriter that absolutely no one has ever heard of. Then he made it free for everyone.

Just to get it out there in the open, what you are reading is a bit of a shameless plug—yet few shameless plugs are as fun as this one.


You see, I wouldn’t be here writing for PopMatters if it wasn’t for a guy named Benjamin Durdle. Ben was the guy who got me into recording songs, which has become one of my favorite hobbies in life. Am I any good at it? To be totally honest with you: no, not really—but that’s almost beside the point. Although I had always been a fan of pop music, it was Ben—the guy with keen underground sensibilities and an infectious love for actually recording whatever musical inkling dripped into his head—who opened me up to several new bands and the very concept of how music production works, which inevitably was one of the major things that lead me to become the writer that I am today.


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Tuesday, Sep 15, 2009

There are, of course, lots and lots of hopeful comedians who have put videos up on YouTube. Some of these videos become wildly popular; many more are viewed only by friends, family, and those who stumble upon them accidentally.


Anyone who pays attention to the view counts in the lower right corner of the videos on YouTube has probably wondered why a video like “Charlie bit my finger – again!” has been watched about 120 million times while other equally (or more) entertaining videos go largely unnoticed. Chalk it up to chance.


This post is an attempt to draw attention to the videos of New York-based Pangea 3000, a group of comedians whose carefully-constructed, always original, and, at their best, hilarious videos haven’t quite caught on yet.


Members of the group have enjoyed success contributing to The Onion and appearing on Late Night With Jimmy Fallon; all signs indicate that these guys are ready to explode. Check out the video I’ve posted below (and, if you dig it as much as I do, continue to Pangea 3000’s channel on YouTube), and you’ll be able to say you knew them when.



Tagged as: pangea 3000
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Thursday, Sep 10, 2009

The show Fear Itself was a horror/thriller anthology series that aired on NBC beginning on June 8th, 2008. Despite given the time of Thursday at 10pm/9pm central, the show did not live up to the ratings numbers needed and was canceled after the show went on hiatus in order to make room for the 2008 Olympics.


The show title was derived from the Franklin D. Roosevelt quote, “The only thing we have to fear is fear itself”. The show was in the same line as the show Masters of Horror, each episode was a self contained story that usually ended with a twist, and each story had its own distinct characters portrayed by different characters. In addition, the episodes were all the vision of different directors, the best and biggest in the horror genre such as John Landis (American Werewolf in London), Brad Anderson (Transsiberian), Stuart Gordon (Re-Animator), Darren Lynn Bousman (Saw II, Saw III and Saw IV) and John Dahl (Joy Ride).


Now, FearNET, both a website and onDemand cable network have secured the rights to air the series, including the last five unaired episodes, which can be seen via Comcast or via the website, www.fearnet.com



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Monday, Mar 23, 2009
Vote for your favorite tracks, in honor of Warp's latest milestone.

Warp Records, aka the label that made you fall in love with “IDM” before you knew how corny the term was, is set to celebrate 20 (!!) years in existence. In honor of being almost old enough to drink in the US, the label is asking YOU to vote for your 10 favorite Warp tracks. Click here to participate. And make sure to give good consideration to B12’s “Soundtrack of Space” and Autechre’s “Second Peng.”



Last decade, you may recall, the celebration was marked by the release of three compilations, celebrating Warp’s influences, early singles, and then asking other artists to have a go at remixing the Warp canon. This time around, the top 10 tracks (from 10 different artists) will be released as a compilation in August 09, complete with liner notes featuring user-submitted comments about the tracks.


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