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February 28, 2009

Yes, Seriously.

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Bullets, Bombs, and Babes, "This Ain't No Hula!"

As Rumproast commenter t4toby summarizes, this scene from 1987's Hard Ticket to Hawaii has it all:

Skateboarding, off-center ponytails, blowup dolls, pectoralis muscles, rocket launchers, ROCKET LAUNCHERS!!!, gratuitous violence, totally unnecessary second rocket launch attack on aforementioned blowup doll...I challenge you to come up with a better action sequence!

Evidently, B-movie director Andy Sedaris (not to be confused with David Sedaris) directed a handful of these things in a series known as Bullets, Bombs, and Babes:

Sidaris was best known for his Bullets, Bombs, and Babes series of B-movies produced between 1985 and 1998. These films featured a rotating "stock company" of actors mostly made up of Playboy Playmates and Penthouse "Pets", including Julie Strain, Dona Speir, Hope Marie Carlton, Cynthia Brimhall, Roberta Vasquez, Julie K. Smith, Shae Marks, and Wendy Hamilton. Several of his films were done wholly or largely in Shreveport using many local actors or actors with local ties.
Needless to say, we need to watch the entire series ASAP. Check out the amazing trailer to Hard Ticket to Hawaii after the jump. You gotta love a movie with the catchphrase "This Ain't No Hula!" [hat tip Rumproast]

and then, there's this:

The Most Improbable Soulja Boy Video Mashup Ever

I didn't think there was anything that could make this song good, but somehow the incongruousness of a tap-dancing David Hasselhoff look-alike and his perky crew paired with Soulja Boy's suggestion to "Superman that ho" makes this combo so uncomfortably amazing I can't stop watching it. If only their dance studio was in Williamsburg! I would totes take that class. [Hat tip: Everything is Terrible]

February 27, 2009

Big In, uh, Shanghai

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If you know me, you know that I'm a big slut for a good magazine layout. But with prices of specialty &/or foreign mags running at around $15 a pop, websites for Chinese hipster inspired print such as M-Style scratch the itch just as well. Over at the Shanghaiist, they seem to agree:

Hipsters get a lot of flack in the U.S. and Europe for fetishizing elements of fringe movements and regurgitating them into something completely sterile and inauthentic - all of the style and none of the substance, so to speak.

And yet (for us, at least) the cheap beer and great music is a welcome escape from the whisky-and-green-tea, Eurotrash house, everybody clad in some skimpy shade of black scene that's dominated Shanghai so far.

Bombarded with the now long dead pop culture trends of yesterday's East, some Hong Kong-goes-Brooklyn gems passed under the radar. These kids might as well be living in my building, no? But we've always been fans of the Asian aesthetic. I mean, McDonald's is giving away Hello Kitty watches in their Happy Meals nowadays (which I know one FREEburg writer is super excited about). It's no wonder Michel Gondry loves him some Eastern city lights....

(Exciting news & a peek at Gondry's newest, Tokyo!, after the jump)

This collaborative three-way will be opening March 6th in NYC. Two-thirds of the equation will be doing introductions and Q&As all weekend. Check it!

Antennas of the Race: Psychic Ills vs. Excepter

Ezra Pound once referred to the artist as the “antennae of the race.” He insinuated that the artist was able to sense a cultural zeitgeist, critique and present it to an audience prior to it becoming ubiquitous. More importantly, their ability to expose these cultural happenings is an integral contribution to keeping society in check. Antennas of the Race is a series of conversations between two creative camps –visual, music, or otherwise—that share a common relationship. They are intended to provide a more revealing look at each’s process and attitude toward creativity.

For the inaugural conversation, we have two experimental music groups: Excepter and Psychic Ills. Known for providing captivating (and sometimes unconventional) live performances as well as challenging records, each group has navigated the competitive New York music scene and come to define the richness of its palette.

Further illustrating their bond, Psychic Ills and Excepter will play a show together at 92YTribeca tomorrow. The show begins at 8pm. In addition, Psychic Ills recently released Mirror Eye on the Social Registry.

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FW: Many people in the experimental music scene seem to marry the visuals with a musical aesthetic; you may see this on multiple levels: during a performance or the end product of a record. How do you feel about being apart of this movement?

Excepter: We like to put on a performance and we go out of our way to make videos, so yeah, we’re definitely into the visual. Dance is to music like gesture is to speech; it gives the audience another way to understand what we’re getting across.

We would caution against identifying our visual bent as being part of a movement or scene. If anything, we stand against the influence of the 90s indie stance, which was very anti-image. If there is a common bond between bands, it’s usually a love of records from before our time.

Psychic Ills: There are a lot of bands--there's probably a lot of 'scenes'. We just do our thing. We're not so aware of these qualifiers, but we're into a lot of things music and non-music related.

Excepter: It’s tough for intra-band influence in the experimental scene. By nature, underground music is on the outer edge of the business in general. If anybody has conceits of being a professional artist, there are limited resources and you will be forced to compete for money. You can see how resentment can run high in these situations.

Psychic Ills: It doesn't seem so much like there is one type of thing happening, just a lot of people with similar zip codes.

Excepter: Yeah if you ever want feel out of place, play your label showcase! It’s great people have eclectic tastes these days, but then again, everyone’s a critic --it can make for some awkward experiences both onstage and back.

What I think is interesting for each of our groups and why we get along is that we come from different backgrounds. There are multiple motivations for how each of us came to the play this music. Both Clare [Excepter] and Liz [Psychic Ills] come from dance performance backgrounds; Jimmy [Psychic Ills] and Lala [Excepter] come from the classical music world; bunch of film majors in the band. What’s been so freeing is making work that is uncompromising –at the price of giving up being commercially successful.

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FW: What do you think, then, about the sense of community in the digital age? Do you think it fosters more freedom and access or further provides this wall of isolation?

Excepter: It has and it hasn’t. On one hand it broadens and intensifies the level of communication, which in turn creates a sense of community. On the other hand, it broadens and intensifies the level of criticism, which isn’t so great for freedom of creativity.

Psychic Ills: Its probably does both. Technology is always interesting. People are always gonna take of leave certain elements of it--y'know use what works for them.

FW: How do you feel about New York being so financially tough on artists/musicians?

Excepter: It’s a tightrope walk of how to build a body of work that lasts while supporting ourselves.

Psychic Ills: Musician or not, most people are just trying to survive. Sometimes you've gotta go to the $1 pizza spot. But, there's something good about how it kicks you in the ass every so often and reminds you that you're alive. I don’t think it’s going to change.

Big Terrific Moves

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Last night was Big Terrific's last show at Sound Fix because the lounge is totally closing. For over a year the N. 11th St. venue served as a mainstay of free comedy and music in Williamsburg, and Big Terrific was the weekly keystone thanks to common appearances by acts like Zach Galifianakis, Sarah Silverman, and Eugene Mirman. It was basically the closest you could get to "Adult Swim Live" without blowing $75 on the "Cartoon Network on Ice Tour 2009." All that past tense, so depressing. Good news after the jump!

Good news is that Big Terrific hosts Max Silvestri and Gabe & Jenny are moving the act to Cameo, which is even closer to the train. And to Wednesdays, so now Wednesday can be your new Thursday, and Thursday can be just another lame weekday instead of riding Friday's coattails to the top. New Big Terrific shows start on March 11th @ Cameo, and tomorrow is Marissa Nadler playing Sound Fix's last in-store show.

Rachel Ray Gets Dry-Humped, Grabs Some Ass At SXSW Preview Party

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image c/o nickydigital.com (hat tip, Krista)

First the keffiyah, and now this.

Perky homemaker Rachel Ray, best known for annoying millions with her quasi-robotic joie de vivre on Everyday with Rachel Ray, is throwing what may be the coolest party of next month's SXSW. Confirmed bands for her little soiree include the Hold Steady, the Thermals, Ra Ra Riot, Semi Precious Weapons, and the New York Dolls. The menu (available on the event's website) looks appropriately awesome in its own right, offering such southwestern themed dishes as seven-layer sliders and smoky chipotle and black bean chilaquiles. Between this and unholy resurrection of Taylor Hanson, 2009's SXSW is shaping up to be the most wholesome yet.

And to add yet another layer of weirdness to the whole affair, Page Six reports that Ray stormed the stage during her SXSW preview party at Santos Party House on Wednesday (yes, there was a preview party), jokingly tried to steal the boots off of Semi Precious Weapons frontman Justin Tranter, and, as the picture above attests, engaged in some serious glam rock ass-groping. From PageSix:

"Not only is lead singer Justin Tranter the most attractive person I've seen, but I also want his high-heeled boots!" Then she jokingly tried to steal Tranter's boots while grabbing his rear end several times.
Check her out getting dry-humped by Tranter after the jump. What happened to America's wholesome culinary sweetheart? As a tipster relates:
I was at the show and my favorite part was how Justin kept referring to
her as "Rachel mother f***ing Ray"

She is actually kinda awesome....which is weird.

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February 26, 2009

10 Year Old Brit Chick Is Way Cooler Than You


Known solely as Solveig -- or by her nickname Sol, which often graces her masterpieces -- this adolescent artist is making the graffiti community do a serious double take. And if you were to come across her work on the street, her bright, solid colors and cute, childish subjects would make you look twice too.

Though she works mainly on legal graf sites throughout her hometown of Brighton, Sussex, that hasn't stopped the press from quickly dubbing her the "female Banksy."

...awfully impressive for someone who's still in primary school, if you ask me. More examples of her work after the jump.

She's even had a hand at tattooing, though with all that heavy bling around her neck it's a surprise she was able to hold the gun straight.

images via

Brooklyn Needs A New Slogan

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Earlier this evening, Brooklyn Borough President Marty Markowitz sent out a tweet, saying, "I need to think up some new slogans for Brooklyn. Does anyone have ideas?" Well, do we? Let's help him out! Throw your best ideas in the comments and we'll publish 'em in a memo to Marty.

update: oh dear. could this be an imposter? Brooklyn Based just wrote: "Just learned from a trusted source that @MartyMarkowitz isn't really Marty. Who's behind it? Fess up!"

update2: my my my the account is now deleted. twitter sez "That page doesn't exist!" what's going on marty man?

Jindal's Response "Disaster For the Republican Party," "Nihilism," "Insane"

Speaking of Obama's budget, we're not usually huge fans of David Brooks, but holy Christ did he nail it here:

We're waiting for a Kenny the Page mash-up [UPDATE: this is close]. Until then, this will do. Leave Bobby Jindal Alone:

Obama's Budget

Here's a link to Obama's new budget, in all its PDF glory. Enjoy!

Been Had Movies

Ya'll remember snap music? 2005 was heady days. The stocks were maximal and the hip hop was minimal cuz Atlanta's ringtone beats ruled every playlist. One of the most successful salesmen of languid, snare-less jams was D4L, whose member, Ju, is currently embroiled in one of the most pointless, enjoyably petty beefs to hit youtube. Starts back in '08 when Ju dropped this video bragging about his ends:

Which, like most releases from the D4L camp since 2006, was pretty much ignored. Turns out that months later Ju would get shit thrown back in his face thanks to the perennial hero of youtube... some dude in his basement:

Thankfully Ju had the good sense to respond because pretty much anything he does is going to be better than "Betcha Can't Do It Like Me," D4L's second (and last).

With that many movies, you know basement dude has the free time to shoot a response, so it's worth keeping an eye on. And in case Ju finds this next time he Googles himself (how else do you fill 14 waking hours being a former member of D4L and been having money?), his new mixtape is called "Mr. 2k9 Swag," so get it from your local Jamaican dude with a table full of bootlegs.

February 25, 2009

Well-Connected Session Drummer Will Do Anything For $75K

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You ever heard of Josh Freese? No? Neither had I until I stumbled across this site. Mr. Freese, who plays or has played dums with Nine Inch Nails, Devo, The Vandals, A Perfect Circle, etc. etc. etc. is releasing a solo album called Since 1972 on March 24. And as his site explains, you can "subscribe" to this album for editions that range in price from $7 to $75,000. The $7 is a simple digital download of the record, with things getting gradually more interesting as the price goes up (at the $5K level, for example, Josh offers to "Get drunk together. If you don't drink we can go to my Dads place and hang out under the 'Tuba tree,'" and as part of the $20K package, "Josh writes 2 songs about you and it's made available on iTunes and appears on his next record").

The full $75,000 package warrants quoting in full:

-Signed CD/DVD and digital download -T-shirt -Go on tour with Josh for a few days. -Have Josh write, record and release a 5 song EP about you and your life story. -Take home any of his drumsets (only one but you can choose which one.) -Take shrooms and cruise Hollywood in Danny from TOOL's Lamborgini OR play quarters and then hop on the Ouija board for a while. -Josh will join your band for a month...play shows, record, party with groupies, etc.... -If you don't have a band he'll be your personal assistant for a month (4 day work weeks, 10 am to 4 pm) -Take a limo down to Tijuana and he'll show you how it's done (what that means exactly we can't legally get into here) -If you don't live in Southern California (but are a US resident) he'll come to you and be your personal assistant/cabana boy for 2 weeks. -Take a flying trapeze lesson with Josh and Robin from NIN, go back to Robin's place afterwards and his wife will make you raw lasagna.
Hell, I know it's it a recession, but if I were some shit-out-of-luck golden-parachuted Lehman's douchebag, I might be willing to toss the money at the dude who co-wrote that sonic shitwhale "Chinese Democracy" (check out Freese's Wikipedia page) to be my personal assistant. You know, because asshole bankers are probably the only people who dug "Chinese Democracy" in the first place.

Bep Restaurant: Yes, There's Pho in Williamsburg

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photograph by Tam Ngo

Since people have been asking about the mysterious Vietnamese restaurant on the Southside, it's called Bep and it's only open on Mondays. Inside the Simple Cafe. More information in our restaurant guide.

Can't We All Just Blog Along?

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European discount airline RyanAir (and it's PR people, apparently) have got their panties in a twist after one blogger's discovery of a supposed free flight bug. Check out the angry staffers comments on Jason Roe's blog:


"It is Ryanair policy not to waste time and energy corresponding with idiot bloggers and Ryanair can confirm that it won't be happening again."

"Lunatic bloggers can have the blog sphere all to themselves as our people are far too busy driving down the cost of air travel"

"...what self respecting developer uses a crappy CMS such as word press anyway AND puts they're mobile ph number online, i suppose even a prank call is better than nothing on a lonely sat evening!!"

Hat tip, Consumerist.

Ticket Giveaway: U2 on Letterman

We've got 2 tickets to next Tuesday's David Letterman show. U2 will be performing. Their new record No Line On The Horizon drops March 3. It's their 12th studio album and if you're the 12th person to email us at mail | at | freewilliamsburg.com (with 'U2 Giveaway' in the subject line) the tickets are yours. WE HAVE A WINNER. SORRY

Here's their new single:

The Daily Footprint 02/25/09


Kent Ave

Hipstavores

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Grub Street coined it. And the New York Times has a great story on the growing culinary movement in Brooklyn:

Gabrielle Langholtz, the editor of Edible Brooklyn, which chronicles the borough’s food scene, said it has grown along with the arrival of what she calls the “new demographic.”

“It’s that guy in the band with the big plastic glasses who’s already asking for grass-fed steak and knows about nibs,” Ms. Langholtz said.

“Ten years ago all of these people hadn’t moved to Brooklyn yet,” she added, comparing Brooklyn today to Berkeley in the 1970s. “There’s a relationship to food that comes with that approach to the universe,” Ms. Langholtz said. “Every person you pass has read Michael Pollan, every person has thought about joining a raw milk club, and if they haven’t made ricotta, they want to.”

Here's the article: Brooklyn’s New Culinary Movement.

Grizzly Bear—Can Somebody Please Find Ed Droste Some Decent Pho?!

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Grizzly Bear [left to right]: Christopher Bear, Ed Droste, Daniel Rossen, Chris Taylor

Back in January of 2004, we found a promo CD dropped in our mailbox. There was no postage, just a CD crudely wrapped in thick paper with a note attached from Kanine Records. Their studios were just around the corner on Powers Street, just a few blocks from FREEwilliamsburg. The CD had some nondescript scribbling on the front and was called Horn of Plenty—an exceptionally low-key, moody record with haunting vocals drenched in reverb. It was recorded by some locals who called themselves Grizzly Bear. Horn of Plenty became our soundtrack for the winter.

Soon after receiving the CD, we saw the band play Glass House Gallery. They killed.

Of course, Grizzly Bear became indie A-listers in 2006 with their masterpiece Yellow House, which was on everybody's shortlist for record of the year. Their latest, Veckatimest (their website explains that it's "a small, uninhabited island off the coast of Massachusetts") will be released on May 26. It's among the most anticipated records of the year.

Ed Droste (guitar, vocals) wrote us a few weeks ago, inquiring about the lack of Pho in the neighborhood. He'd heard rumors of a new Vietnamese restaurant opening on the Southside, that we haven't been able to substantiate. (Anyone?) Ed was kind enough to answer a few questions about Brooklyn and Grizzly Bear's upcoming record.

1. How long have you lived in Williamsburg?

If you include Greenpoint (some people do and some people don't) I've lived in the area since 2003. If you don't count Greenpoint, since 2006.

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2. Where do you eat & drink? Any favorite local haunts?

Chris Bear's girlfriend works at Marlow and Sons and everyone that works there is so friendly and the food is insanely amazing so I ultimately always end up there. Other than that I've been cooking a lot at home. I would like to publicly say I would KILL for a good Vietnamese Pho joint in the hood, so please somebody open one!!!

3. Is the rest of the band out here?

They are. Chris Bear lives off the Graham stop, myself off Lorimer. Chris Taylor off of Bedford and Dan in Greenpoint.

4. Culturally speaking, what's your take on New York these days?

I love living in New York. It's the one place I've lived where I alway can count on seeing people from around the world and most of my friends visit the city at least once a year. My family (in Boston) can visit easily and I'm just generally at home here. No matter what year it is, there will always be people complaining about how "it used to be" but I've enjoyed living here all 10 years for better and worse.

5. Animal Collective, Wolf Parade, Fleet Foxes, Grizzly Bear, Bret's T-Shirts on Flight of the Conchords.... What's going on with all the animal references?

In retrospect I wish I could just name our band "Omelette" or something random. Are food names played out? I didn't even know Animal Collective when I named the band. And there was no Wolf Parade or Fleet Foxes, at least to my knowledge. The name was based on a joking nickname to an ex, so I though it was funny/appropriate at the time. Oh how cliche it ended up being. Such is life. Gotta own it I suppose!

6. We're really looking forward to the new record. What's your 25 word review of it?

Oh man! You can't ask an artist to review their own work. That's practically begging for some anonymous commenter to come get aggro. I'll say it's different sounding and more dynamic and I'm proud of it. :)

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Bikes In The Kitchen and JellyNYC Present...

This Saturday at The Shank in Greenpoint (98 Bayard Street — map). From MyOpenBar

I know, I know—this sounds too good to be true, and it probably is if you look at it like a sane person: NinjaSonik, Team Robespierre, Juiceboxxx, Wild Yaks, Cerebral Ballzy, MNDR, Dre Skull, DJ C.lo and a secret guest (Spank Rock again? Whoops!) with 500 16oz cans of PBR going fast at 11pm. Oh and hey, it's all-ages, too. Also, Santa to pop out of the fireplace with a big bag of dicks for everybody. (PBR, $6 cover / 11am till gone)
Sounds like a great show, even without the bag of dicks.

February 24, 2009

The Daily Footprint 02/24/09

Recession Status
L Platform, Union Square

Poster Boy and Aakash Nihalani rework Monet, Smells of Appropriation and Publicity Stunt

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C/O Dan Gould

My initial reaction to the MoMA installation at Atlantic Ave. was mixed. I concede that people are inundated with advertising, and this was an opportunity to offer people something more cultured. Still, the motivation seemed a little suspect.

Seeing Poster Boy and Aakash Nihalani, however, remix the works made me very excited about the installation. While the public display makes the work vulnerable to vandalism, it also provides for the images to be appropriated and enter the larger cultural dialogue. It, therefore, brings a new life to the pieces and provides for more social commentary.

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C/O Doug Jaeger

What I don't quite understand in this story is why Doug Jaeger, the advertising brains behind the original campaign, was photographed participating in the vandalism? The move reduces Poster Boy's street art to a publicity stunt. This makes the project seem calculated and doesn't bode well for the MoMA or Poster Boy.

Update: NY Mag has the scoop. MoMA denies authorizing the vandalism. CBS Outdoors believes otherwise.

Update: MoMA is now lashing out. Police are seeking Doug Jaeger for questioning.

Hat Tips: Vulture, PSFK

Animal Collective Facebook Lyricing

Thanks for playing along, Cornelius.

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Related: Animal Collective is a Band Created By/For/On the Internet

Brother Can You Spare Some Rent?

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img c/o the city reliquary

The City Reliquary (370 Metropolitan Ave.) is bringing it back to the 30's this Friday night for their Depression-Era Fundraiser, featuring all sorts "historical diversions and entertainments." They wrote in, saying, "Times are tough all around – rollercoaster stock markets, job losses by the hundreds of thousands, bipartisan bickering with no relief in sight. It’s even tougher for 501 (c) (3) non-profit Community Museums." So in honor or these tough times, they'll have on hand:

Pie the Landlord!
Madame LuLu LoLo, Fortune Teller Extraordinaire
Hobo Photos a Go-Go
Depression-era movies
Oil drum fires
DIY Fingerless Gloves Table!
Prohibition-era Beer provided by the Brooklyn Brewery
DJ Stacher playing hits from the economically challenged 1930s (Harlem Jazz) and 1970s (early Rap); as well as Big Money tracks from the 1980s (disco) and 2000s (electro).

The Reliquary is a 501(c)3 not-for-profit organization with all sorts of vintage NYC collections, meaning your fortuneteller fees will be tax deductible! The door minimum is $10 and will help pay this and last's month rent.

Here's your post soundtrack:


Lets Lynch The Landlord - Dead Kennedys

February 23, 2009

Paul's Boutique Audio Commentary

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Forget Nirvana. Paul's Boutique was the real soundtrack of a generation. And now to commemorate its 20th anniversary, Adrock, MCA, and Mike D have finally released their own audio commentary. Finally, you can check them out waxing poetic on Chuck Woolery, throwing eggs, and chillin' like Bob Dylan here. [Thanks Kevin]

Bizarre Supergroup Tinted Windows Shoots Bizarre Promo Video

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Anyone going to SXSW? If so, PLEASE confirm that this act is for real.

The video below is an odd little promo for Tinted Windows, perhaps the oddest rock & roll supergroup in since... well, maybe ever. The lineup includes James Iha of the Smashing Pumpkins, Adam Schlesinger of Fountains of Wayne, Bun E. Carlos of Cheap Trick, and--the coup de grace--Taylor Hanson. Of Hanson. Check this out:

Tinted Windows - Promo

And according to Stereogum, they're playing SXSW on 3/20 at the Billboard Showcase @ Pangea in Austin, and have an album dropping in April. If you make it to Texas for their debut set, be sure to get me pictures. Otherwise, I'm not sure I'll believe this whole thing isn't some sort of awesome joke.

Tinted Windows press release after the jump:

The debut album by Tinted Windows will be released April 21st on S-Curve Records. Tinted Windows are: Taylor Hanson (lead vocals), James Iha (guitar), Adam Schlesinger (bass), and Bun E. Carlos (drums).

Taylor Hanson is best known as a member of Hanson, the multi-million-selling trio of brothers from Tulsa who have been recording and touring since 1992. James Iha was one of the original members of the Smashing Pumpkins, and has also been a member of A Perfect Circle and a solo artist. Adam Schlesinger is in the bands Fountains Of Wayne and Ivy. Bun E. Carlos is the drummer of the legendary Cheap Trick, with whom he has played since the group's inception in 1974.

The band will be making several appearances at the upcoming South By Southwest Festival in March. They will also perform select club shows starting this spring, and will appear at the Bamboozle festival at New Jersey's Meadowlands. A performance on The Late Show With David Letterman is scheduled for April 20th. More dates will be announced shortly.

Taylor and Adam first crossed paths in the mid-Nineties and stayed friends ever since. "Taylor and I had always talked about trying to do something together," says Schlesinger, "maybe write some songs, or play some shows - something." Meanwhile, James' and Adam's respective bands had toured together, and the two have been collaborating on various projects for years, including guesting on each others' records, producing other groups together, running indie label Scratchie Records and co-owning a recording studio in Manhattan.

James, Adam and Taylor started kicking around the idea of writing and recording some songs that would set Taylor's unmistakable voice against some loud guitars. They also talked about fusing the sounds of power-pop, rock and New Wave of the late 70's and early 80's, which they all loved, with the more modern rock and pop sounds of their own groups. "We talked about everything from from The Buzzcocks to The Knack," says Iha. "And, of course, Cheap Trick."

When discussing possible drummers to round out the group, they thought, according to Taylor, "Who do we know that can play drums like Bun E. Carlos?" They ran through a list of names, before realizing the obvious. Both the Pumpkins and Fountains Of Wayne had shared stages with Cheap Trick over the years. Figuring it was a long shot, but worth a try, they got in touch with Bun E. and asked if they could send him a few song demos. Much to their delight and surprise, he was into it, and agreed to come to New York to work with them. Explains Bun E., "The songs are great and I'm honored to be a part of Tinted Windows."

The result is a stripped-down, high-energy record that combines the strengths and identifiable styles of all four members, and yet doesn't really sound like anything else any of the four has done elsewhere. And with three of the four band members contributing songs, there is a real band vibe in the diversity of the material. They have shot videos for two songs on the album already, with plans to do more in the coming weeks.

S-Curve Founder/CEO Steve Greenberg noted: "When we first heard about Tinted Windows, we were intrigued by the lineup, since we've done projects with most members of the band in the past. But when we heard the music, we were absolutely blown away. This album is going to make a lot of music lovers very happy and we're honored to help bring it to the world."

"That Is Me, Uh, On The Twitter Page"


Follow him here.

Banksy Wuz Here

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Looks like I just missed Banksy in the bathroom at Life Cafe 983 last night. Damn.

February 22, 2009

Good Shoes, Good Music. Period.

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Noah @ MHoW

Since we're all praying for warmer weather, Ferraby Lionheart & Noah and the Whale, sans Laura Marling, brought some country fair charm to Music Hall of Williamsburg last night. Makes me wanna put on a summer dress and walk around barefoot in the park-- which is sad, as my window says its starting to snow. Seriously though, more of this please. Two bands with fairly equal playing fields and that's all. It screams show up on time, the opener is just as important, not to mention wonderfully whimsical.

After Ferraby's melodies drifted up and away, the Noah boys, whose website looks straight off of Zissou's Belafonte, took the stage. There were lots of new goods to be played, as they are in New York mixing their next record which just might be of the same name as the last song of the set, First Days of Spring. Let's all thank Charlie Fink for sharing his broken heart charms, bassist "Urby Whale" for wearing those zebra print shoes, and to all the boys, although some may disagree, for not playing into one fan's urge to be in a Saturn commercial.

I've been left with a serious longing for Spring, in more ways than one...

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Noah, Whale-ing (tee hee)

February 21, 2009

The State of DIY: An Interview with Todd Brooks of the Pendu Organization

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Record Tables at Eye and Ear

If you look at the life cycle of any 'scene'--Hippies in San Francisco, Krautrock in Cologne, Punk in D.C.--their rise is always met with a climax. In the aftermath they usually remain vital. The media just chooses to turn their heads to something 'newer'--to another corner of the country waiting to be excavated. I don't mean to overly romanticize this phenomena. But, I think over the last decade New York (and Brooklyn in particular) has received its generous helping of attention and praise. At some point you stop and think: Has the the wave of creativity finally crested?

I would actually like to revise this notion that creativity might be turning its gaze away from New York. What has been so interesting in the rise of the blogosphere is the ability to continue the documentation process that in an earlier age would have been less available. The ability to do so provides for multiple areas of the country like Portland, Austin, Baltimore and New York to coexist and continue to inform each other.

This brings me to the Eye and Ear festival that I attended in December. The Eye and Ear Festival is a biannual New York-centric music and record festival that brings together some of New York's most interesting talent (Zs, Ducktails, Cult of Youth and Symbols) with many of the labels (ESP, Wierd Records) that continue to support them.

Such a festival obviously is a huge undertaking for anyone; however, for Todd Brooks and his Pendu Organization, it is one part of his vision for nurturing young creativity. In the future, he hopes to encompass visual and writing mediums as well as music. The following interview touches upon his vision and is a testament to creativity thriving in Brooklyn.

How did you come up with the idea for the festival?

There are so many great labels in NY right now, and I wanted to help shine a light and make those labels more accessible to the public. Even before the recession hit, there has been a noticeable downturn in record sales with an upturn in music downloads.  We live in an age where great record reviews in blogs and magazines send people straight to P2P downloads rather than sending them straight to their local record store or mail-order.  I'm not against MP3's or the internet by any means, I think both are a great way for people to learn about new music, but it separates the music from the entire experience. A lot of hard work goes into packaging of DIY records and tapes which are put together often literally by hand.  These unique objects are every bit a part of the music.  A record or tape is an object to be looked at as well as listened to, thus fitting the title for the festival: Eye & Ear.  The record fair is meant to highlight the physical part of the music in an overly-digitalized world of JPEGs and MP3s.

How do you want to expand Pendu's mission?  


Besides continuing to put on festivals and putting on both art and music oriented shows throughout the city; the goal is to open a physical gallery and bookshop.  Pendu is a purveyor of ecstatic arts, so I will continue to seek out great visual artists and musicians and feature their work. I have a deep interest in the occult and eroticism and have plans to expand those themes in future curatorial projects as well.  I recently put out a 7'' of the first recordings from porn-star Sasha Grey and her group Atelecine on my Pendu Sound imprint and in May of this year, Pendu is bringing Chicago-based, occult-artist Raymond Salvatore Harmon to Brooklyn. At the beginning of this year, Pendu filed for not-for-profit status, so there's a lot going on.

Touching upon the Brooklyn scene's life cycle, how does this festival build community?

I noticed right away at the festival that record labels began introducing themselves to each other, trading cassettes and records and zines, asking each other about upcoming projects, and so on.  It was amazing to watch a coming together happening.  I set up the record fair using long tables positioned end to end to put people directly next to one another so that they would share the tables.  I didn't want a sea of separate islands of tables with people selling their wares like some commercial expo in a suburban mall.  I sat people next to each other with the purpose of bringing people together and I think that's exactly what happened. I think it was a great start.

What do you feel is the DIY community's biggest threat?

 
Every community's biggest threat is infighting from jealousy and ego.  There's no way around it.  I'm no utopist but I'm not a cynic either.  There's a healthy optimism balanced with healthy skepticism that guides my endeavors.  If each label or artist can appreciate and support the work of others around them, then I see the possibility of maintaining a healthy and thriving community.

Do you see the community continuing to expand?  


I certainly hope so.  There's no reason why it can't.  I would like to think that there were some people who came to the NY Eye & Ear Fest and were inspired to start their own record label or start a band because of what they saw.  I hope they learn how great making tapes and trading tapes and appreciating other people's work can be.  I hope to see more of us helping each other out and going the extra mile to put out great work.  NY Eye & Ear will be a biannual festival and the next one will happen from June 19-21, 2009.  I think that we'll have a great chance to see if the community is indeed expanding.  

Barberry Opens - Replaces Zipi Zape

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image c/o Grub Street

We've got the menu and more information here. Let us know what you think. From Shecky's:

Chef Diego Gonzales is no newcomer to 152 Metropolitan Ave. in Williamsburg: he was the chef at the location's former Spanish restaurant Zipi Zape and will be taking the helm at its newest reincarnation, Barberry (which, despite the images of tartan its name may conjure, serves Mediterranean food). Signature dishes include grilled sardines, frisée salad with honey-roasted walnuts, and chocolate souflée--although the typical burgers, sandwiches, and steaks are also on the menu. Most importantly, the full bar is well-stocked enough to keep customers coming back.

Williamsburg Fashion Weekend

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I checked out the scene at Glasslands last night for Williamsburg Fashion Weekend. Let me just start by saying that seeing some of the fashion elite bouncing around in their 5 inch heels at this venue was thoroughly entertaining. I showed up late, flats in tow, at the fault of currently going through Brooklyn roommate search hell-- which reminds me, if you want to live in a beautiful Bushwick loft, holler at this girl.

Anyway, fabulous host Arthur Arbit kicked off the night introducing the 'Burg friendly models of Mandate of Heaven. Although an hour late, designer/model Carissa Ackerman's grandma chic meets scandalous onesies tickled the fancy of the patient crowd. Much to my delight, I guess, I somehow managed to position myself in perfect viewing of lots 'o sexy buns.

Next up was Nettie Tiso featuring super sleek Racecar! for men and flirty Nettie for women. Her lines seemed to race by (pun unintentional) after Mandate's never ending hot bod parade. But a short line is what you get when everything is hand sewn. Serious good stuff.

Trisha McBride & Papusza Couture put on an unorthodox show, but isn't that the point of hosting a fashion party at a warehouse by the East River?

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Check out Day 2 of the show tonight at Glasslands-- starting at 8:30pm (hopefully). See the likes of Treehouse Brooklyn's Sirius*, Sodafine's Erin Wekerle, and Arbit's own King Gurvy. Oh, and Celebration is gonna be there too! 8 Bucks at the Door, y'all!

More photos after the jump...

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Carissa Ackerman (left)

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Mandate

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Nettie Tiso

February 20, 2009

Adam Corolla hangs up on Ann Coulter

Who knew Adam Corolla could actually be cool?

The Daily Footprint 02/20/09

Going Postal in Bushwick

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As I procrastinate another drab trip to the USPS location on South 4th St. (seriously -- why is that place the black hole of the 'hood!?) I'm fondly reminded of the days I toted around a neon pink sticker book under my arm, glittery unicorn and all. Martha Cooper, who you may know from her efforts in 1984's Subway Art, tells the Village Voice what we're all thinking. Or, at least, what we wish we were cool enough to think:

"What I really like about postal stickers is the idea that the U.S. government is participating in street art," Cooper explains from a counter stool in a 14th Street coffee shop, a knitted scarf and matching OBAMA-print hat tucked into her bag. She's simultaneously eating a whole-wheat doughnut and examining a sticker that demands, "WHERE THE FUCK IS MY MOONCAKE?" This conveniently works as a thought bubble, but it's actually scrawled on a page in the sleeved album she's brought along, to show off just a few of the "couple thousand" stickers she has spotted on foot since 2003, shot digitally, then carefully detached with an adhesive remover that lives in her backpack. "It's like a little treasure hunt, when you're walking around, to always have your eyes out."
So, Tonight at 7:30pm, go check out the launch of Miss Cooper's new book Going Postal, celebrating this special kind of government funded art at Ad Hoc with FREE drinks, of course. Oh, how I love thee, broken economy.

The Week in Free Shit (The Smelly Piano Edition)

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Ohhhh Williamsburg, there's still a whole pile of free shit out there. This week, we've got a stank-ass piano, brain scans, spearfishing magazines and some free records! Come, take a gander with me and smell the savings.

Free Foam!
You know things are in the shitter when people are giving away free foam. It's in the same category as free spit, potato shavings and eye boogies. But, you know, foam makes a fantastic jacket stuffer and you could probably tell all your friends you're having a foam party, but then when they show up just have chunks of this real foam lying around your house. Wait, that's actually a funny idea should I email this guy?

Free Steinway Piano
Sounds awesome, but there's a catch: "this piano is free. it has a BEAUTIFUL sound, but unfortunately, it smells." What. the. fuck. If only Beethoven couldn't smell, we'd have a winner here.

Free Brain Scans!
Hey, you never know. Grandpa might've been right all those years ago when he knocked and heard echos.

Free Spearfishing Mags
Things might get testy this summer, and yall might need to refine your spearfishing skills in the East River. These 30-some mags will get you well on your way. Also, have you ever met a spearfisher without a beard? No. Grow it.

And then, tomorrow there's Free Records!!

LARGE VARIETY OF RECORDS & BOOKS
131 KENT STREET
SATURDAY 2/21 & SUNDAY 2/22
9 am - 5 pm From the ad:

For the boozehounds, My Open Bar's got a few events tonight, namely free PBR starting at 9 at Rockstar Bar (349 Kent Street) and a performance art piece by Rob Andrews with artsy booze, no cover at Grace Exhibition Space (840 Broadway). Also, Brooklyn Brewery tours as free as ever and there're poets at Pete's.

Oh! Williamsburg is Dead just reminded me, "you can venture to the almost-but-not-quite-closed Sound Fix Cafe to see The Forms play a free show at 8pm."

If you're over in Bushwick, check out BushwickBk's culture picks for the weekend, and if I missed any, or to be included in future semi-regular round-ups, email me.

Punk Cop Pogan Out at NYPD

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img c/o gothamist

Patrick Pogan, the now FORMER cop who beefheadedly bodyslammed cyclist Christopher Long at a summer Critical Mass ride last year, was quietly dismissed from the force last week.

From the Times:

"A police officer who was videotaped knocking a man off his bicycle and onto the ground during a cycling event in Manhattan last summer has been fired, the Police Department said. Paul J. Browne, the Police Department’s chief spokesman, said the officer, Patrick Pogan, 23, was fired about 10 days ago."

Click through the jump for that fateful video, a TImes Up! statement and a helpful frame-by-frame analysis by a YouTube user:

A spokesman for Times Up said:

"The NYPD is taking a heavy hand on dealing with this police officer, but we hope that Mayor Bloomberg will direct the higher-ups at the NYPD to discontinue their pattern of dangerous tactics and selective enforcement against cyclists."

And here's how to do your very own NYPD takedown. It's easy!

After frame-by-framing this, you can see it's a classical example of the proper technique for a pedestrian to bring down a cyclist.

1) Edge the cyclist in close between you and the curb so he has no way to maneuver left or right

2) Bring your shoulder towards the cyclist's shoulder just as he's passing you so you knock him sideways but he doesn't knock you down

3) Get ready to write a very large check to reimburse for medical expenses

4) Bend over and kiss your NYPD job goodbye

February 19, 2009

The Pains of Being Peggy Wang

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Peggy Wang on vox and keys

The Pains of Being Pure at Heart are everywhere right now and honestly -- although I've heard the name kicked around for awhile now -- I didn't listen to them until recently. They have a fuzzy, pop sensibility that recalls My Bloody Valentine, but puts me in a much nicer mood. I see visions of high school dances, sneaking Peach Schnapps under the bleachers. (OK that's a scene from The Virgin Suicides). The music is pretty in a twee, Sofia Coppola-kinda way.

On vox and keys Peggy Wang adds an essential layer to this confectionery delight, and like so many New York dwellers doesn't stop at just making music, she's also an editor at BuzzFeed. Miss Wang was nice enough to answer our burning questions on skinny boys, making an album, the Internet and European dreams.

So first of all congrats on all your recent successes -- especially your Pitchfork review. How does all this buzz feel?

It's awesome! It is kind of crazy that one simple thing can open so many doors. No one had ever heard of us before the review, and now I have old high school and college friends contacting me and saying stuff like "Congrats!" and "I'm so proud of you!" It's funny because I don't think anyone has said "Congratulations" to me since the time I won the regional spelling bee in 5th grade. We self-released an EP and it was never reviewed on Pitchfork, and I think when we recorded the album, it didn't even occur to us that it would even get reviewed. So yeah, it really surpassed any kind of expectations.

How important do you think the Internet is for bands these days? And why do you think you guys have had so much success on the 'net?

The Internet has been incredibly instrumental for us. It used to be that you needed to be on a record label with distribution if you wanted to get your music out there. We were able to put out our first EP ourselves, and maybe it wasn't available at Virgin Megastore or whatever, but we did put all our music up for download and people were able to hear us and get a bit of a buzz going. I think people lament over the old days, when you would make your friends mix tapes and tape your favorite college radio shows to find out about new music. But the way things are right now with the Internet, it's just so much easier for indie bands.

Can you tell me a little bit about the formation of the band - when did you guys meet...that sorta thing?

Alex and Kip used to work together at Insound. Kip and I met through my friend Shirley. The three of us formed the band to play at my birthday party in March 2007. We all loved this band from Leeds called the Manhattan Love Suicides and also Titus Andronicus, both of whom played the party too. The party was in a giant warehouse on Wythe St. in Williamsburg and was by far the most epic birthday party I've ever had. It was so fun that we just wanted to keep doing it, and with the help of Cakeshop, we were able to book another show. We went for about 8 months playing with an ipod instead of a real drummer, until we met Kurt who came to a few of our shows and really liked the EP that we put out. Besides being a totally amazing drummer, Kurt also has amazing taste in music. I feel like we all have pretty good taste in music, so it makes for a good band situation, especially during long car rides while on tour.

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What was it like recording the debut album -- and how does it feel to have a finished product now?

Recording is really fun! I know some people might find it boring, but I dunno, we are kind of lazy and like to do everything in one take. So it's not too frustrating. I think Kip did lots of guitar overdubs and tracks, but I didn't have to sit around for that part. It definitely feels good now that it's finally out, because we probably finished recording it in August or September of 2008. And then it didn't officially come out until February of 2009. The EP is more mechanical and noisy, which is the style of music that is closest to my heart, but I think it's important that we progressed into a more polished kind of sound. And I'm really happy with the way the vocals came out on the album.

What's your favorite venue to play?

Our best shows have probably been at Cakeshop and Dead Herring. I like small venues with no stage! And nice sound guys (or girls) who give you as much reverb as you want.

I heard there were a lot of skinny boys at your album release show at Mercury -- what's your type?

Ha, really? I honestly didn't notice a disproportionate number of skinny boys at that show! Umm, I guess I'm into boys with floppy hair who wear really soft sweaters and have no tattoos. Ideally, he would be just like me in terms of interests and outlook on life, and in a perfect world, we might even share the same birthday!

Is Art Boonparn [director] a friend? How did you guys come up with the concept and feel of the video for "Everything with You"?

Art Boonparn is one of my dear old friends from New Orleans (which is where I grew up and went to college). We wanted to do a video on super 8, and I remembered Art showing me a music video he did for his band Hotchkiss that he shot on super 8. He doesn't have much film experience, but after working with him on that video, I can honestly say that he has a very natural knack for filmmaking. Me and the other girl in the video, Carlen Altman, are real life best friends. We just sort of filmed it in a day with no real agenda. She lives out in Brighton Beach and she was going to take me to all her old haunts. The video is so simple but it turned out really effortless, maybe because we didn't put much effort into it, ha ha, but it came out the best way possible. I think it shows that you don't need lots of special effects or a plot or acting or anything to make a music video. It just feels warm and special without being contrived or overly cutesy.

What's next for you and the band -- and what are you most looking forward to?

Oh man, I'm looking forward to going to Europe. I've never been to continental Europe. We're playing a big festival with My Bloody Valentine, who I've never seen play live. Also, we have some new songs that I can't wait to record. This might sound self-involved, but I listen to the demos all the time. I'm pretty excited to start playing some new songs.


"Everything With You"

NYU Coeds Prove Nothing Sells Leftist Politics Like, Uh, Boobs?

Not that I'm complaining.

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NYU Local
posted some pics of a couple self-proclaimed "Feminist Ninjas" challenging the administration with a threat of "Exposure til Disclosure." And they mean it.

Pictures of half-naked, smoking college girls proving some important political point about something after the jump. (Boob alert....NSFW)

Earlier: NYU Mistakes Itself for Berkeley in the '60s

CLICK FOR LARGER

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Modeski Martin and Wood, oh my!

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What are you laughing at John?

At first I felt like I had shown up to the wrong place, like at a party I wasn't invited to. But once I had a drink or two I remembered this jazz band that came to my high school -- these old dudes who had played with the likes of Billie Holiday. Every year they would come to our lecture hall and transport us to a magical land of free form fantasy that moved my soul.

Some of you may have heard of a little trio called Medeski, Martin and Wood. They've been around for about fifteen years and have developed an extremely loyal fan base. I don't know if this is the norm, but there were definitely some dirty hippies in attendance. My favorite was the one with dreads who danced in front of me for the whole first set. Swarms of stoners showed up midway through the first set ( I'm sure they felt right on time) and by the second set alcohol turned some bros and hos into dancers. I guess improvisational jamband music makes people feel free? I can get into that.

This Wednesday night show at (le) Poisson Rouge was part of a 3-night NY tour taking place at small venues. Tuesday night was a seated (and possibly more civilized affair) at 92Y TriBeCa. The final show is tonight at City Winery. Jazz it up yo?!!

The Daily Footprint 02/19/09


South 5th and Berry

Snuggie™ Pub Crawl = Worse than Donk?

Gothamist and UrbanDaddy.com are reporting that Friday night will mark NYC's first-ever Snuggie™ Pub Crawl. Sigh.

According to UrbanDaddy:

"Your nightmares come to life with the Snuggie bar crawl, in which misguided souls swaddled in sleeved blankets descend on otherwise pleasant bars to mingle with their own kind and possibly spill pilsner all over their blanket-aprons."

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c/o bestdirect.tv

Pub crawl organizers say:

"In response to the stunning public embrace of the warm and cuddly Snuggie™, the SnuggiePubCrawl.com Team is hosting the first-ever Snuggie™ Pub Crawl in New York, NY. Even though it's just a blanket with sleeves, we're sure that you'll enjoy a winter evening spent drinking with friends and the Snuggie™."

Fun(?)! There's even a clandestine spirit involved, since the organizers haven't yet identified where or exactly when the Snuggie mob will be hitting a bar near you. If you are interested (but really, are you???) then RSVP here.

Otherwise, feel free to leave your feedback about what says worse things about humankind in 2009 - the Snuggie™ Pub Crawl, or Donk?

"I Am The Fly" Uke'd-Up

Our favorite Scottish punk lo-fi ukulele duo, Gus and Fin, do their rendition of Wire's new wave non-chart hit "I Am The Fly" from the LP Chair's Missing. Great stuff. Thanks Rumproast.

Art Opening Tomorrow Night at The Nut Roaster Studios

Brooklyn Fire Proof and The Nut Roaster Studios are hosting an opening Friday night, featuring pieces by Ridgewood, Queens-based artist John Szlasa. Not only is the man a true stallion and gem of a human being, but his paintings are definitely worth a gander as well. The art incorporates twentieth century imagery, abstraction, graphic elements and type in a dedication to a faded experience, disseminated and degraded into jokes and stereotypes, or sentiment.

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c/o Brooklyn Fire Proof

So we recommend that you head to Bushwick from 7-10 pm and indulge in wine, cheese, art and the like. The Nut Roaster Studios are located at 120 Ingraham Street.

Extra info available here....

Donk

VBS.tv has posted an amusing new series of videos, exposing us to the world of “Donk” music. It’s basically a super speedy, techno-driven, subpar hip hop generating from young folks in Northern England. The Donk scene smacks of a certain je ne sais quoi, that element of sheer trash which can only emanate from special people - like nightclubbers in Seaside Heights, NJ, or fans of House of Pain gone way raw. “Everybody’s scared of it,” according to one Donk enthusiast. And I have to concur that I’m terrified.

VBS.tv calls it “the absolute bottom of British musical culture,” but we’ll leave it to you to decide:


The Bacon Takedown Cometh

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Freshly freed from the crowds at the Chili Takedown at Union Pool, local food gladiator Matt Timms announced the Brooklyn Bacon Takedown today. It's set for March 29th and will be at the Radegast Hall and Beer Garden right here in sunny Williamsburg!

Here's the deal:

March 29th. Bacon gets TAKEN DOWN!!!!! It's just a fact that everything would taste a lot better if it was bacon instead. And featured in any dish, that dish becomes ten times more wonderfuller. So let's see your bacon recipe. A bacon stew? A bacon appetizer? A bacon desert? Anything is possible. Whatever your dish, be prepared to serve a throng of people- so best to show up with a dish that is easy to divide and serve! We want to see about 250 bites of whatever it is you make!

Email me to enter, and discuss your recipe before hand, to see if it is feasible! The ignorant masses will be arriving in droves to vote on the most delicious bacon attempt. This promises to be the most interesting and fun Takedown ever - let's see what bacon ideas you plan to blow our minds with!!

Visit chili-takedown.com to enter, and start working on your masterful bacon wonderpiece.

Zooey Deschanel's Big Sister

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Asleep on the Subway found an L-dozer, saying it "looks like [Zooey] Deschanel’s big sister is tired." But more so, the photo just reminds me of those damn service changes that are wreaking havoc in my Manhattan subway travels. Seriously, how long does it take you to fix a few breakers, MTA? Just throw some duct tape on them and get on with it. You're making me chronically late for like, everything. And look, now you're making Kate Deschanel late for her appointments too.

NYU Mistakes Itself for Berkeley in the '60s

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A group of NYU students who call themselves Take Back NYU! (exclamation point theirs) has seized a food court at the Kimmel Center for University Life, which I guess seems like a good place to seize in case you get hungry or something.

The reasons for the takeover, listed in the press release after the jump, run the leftist gamut from scholarships for Palestinian students, to a disclosure of the university's endowment holdings, to a contract guaranteeing fair labor practices for all employees. They're mostly noble goals, but demand numero uno rattles the needle on my old entitled-middle-class-kids detector. The kids, first and foremost, insist on "Full legal and disciplinary amnesty for all parties involved in the occupation." Hmm...

If you want to catch a glimpse of these lil' revolutionaries, they're holding a rally at noon today outside of Kimmel, located on the south side of Washington Square Park. Or if you're feeling lazy and like watching activist kids do their homework, you can watch streaming video from inside the occupation here.

The press release:

NYU BUILDING TAKEOVER!!!

At approximately 10pm tonight (Feb. 18), students of Take Back NYU! took over the Kimmel Marketplace. They have blockaded the doors and declared an occupation! They presented their demands to the NYU administration. They read as follows:

DEMANDS

We, the students of NYU, declare an occupation of this space. This occupation is the culmination of a two-year campaign by the Take Back NYU! coalition, and of campaigns from years past, in whose footsteps we follow.

In order to create a more accountable, democratic and socially responsible university, we demand the following:

1. Full legal and disciplinary amnesty for all parties involved in the occupation.

2. Full compensation for all employees whose jobs were disrupted during the course of the occupation.

3. Public release of NYU's annual operating budget, including a full list of university expenditures, salaries for all employees compensated on a semester or annual basis, funds allocated for staff wages, contracts to non-university organizations for university construction and services, financial aid data for each college, and money allocated to each college, department, and administrative unit of the university. Furthermore, this should include a full disclosure of the amount and sources of the university's funding.

4. Disclosure of NYU's endowment holdings, investment strategy, projected endowment growth, and persons, corporations and firms involved in the investment of the university's endowment funds. Additionally, we demand an endowment oversight body of students, faculty and staff who exercise shareholder proxy voting power for the university's investments.

5. That the NYU Administration agrees to resume negotiations with GSOC/UAW Local 2110 – the union for NYU graduate assistants, teaching assistants, and research assistants. That NYU publically affirm its commitment to respect all its workers, including student employees, by recognizing their right to form unions and to bargain collectively. That NYU publically affirm that it will recognize workers' unions through majority card verification.

6. That NYU signs a contract guaranteeing fair labor practices for all NYU employees at home and abroad. This contract will extend to subcontracted workers, including bus drivers, food service employees and anyone involved in the construction, operation and maintenance at any of NYU's non-U.S. sites.

7. The establishment of a student elected Socially Responsible Finance Committee. This Committee will have full power to vote on proxies, draft shareholder resolutions, screen all university investments, establish new programs that encourage social and environmental responsibility and override all financial decisions the committee deems socially irresponsible, including investment decisions. The committee will be composed of two subcommittees: one to assess the operating budget and one to assess the endowment holdings. Each committee will be composed of ten students democratically elected from the graduate and under-graduate student bodies. All committee decisions will be made a strict majority vote, and will be upheld by the university. All members of the Socially Responsible Finance Committee will sit on the board of trustees, and will have equal voting rights. All Socially Responsible Finance Committee and Trustee meetings shall be open to the public, and their minutes made accessible electronically through NYU's website. Elections will be held the second Tuesday of every March beginning March 10th 2009, and meetings will be held biweekly beginning the week of March 30th 2009.

8. That the first two orders of business of the Socially Responsible Finance committee will be:
a) An in depth investigation of all investments in war and genocide profiteers, as well as companies profiting from the occupation of Palestinian territories.
b) A reassessment of the recently lifted of the ban on Coca Cola products.

9. That annual scholarships be provided for thirteen Palestinian students, starting with the 2009/2010 academic year. These scholarships will include funding for books, housing, meals and travel expenses.

10. That the university donate all excess supplies and materials in an effort to rebuild the University of Gaza.

11. Tuition stabilization for all students, beginning with the class of 2012. All students will pay their initial tuition rate throughout the course of their education at New York University. Tuition rates for each successive year will not exceed the rate of inflation, nor shall they exceed one percent. The university shall meet 100% of government-calculated student financial need.

12. That student groups have priority when reserving space in the buildings owned or leased by New York University, including, and especially, the Kimmel Center.

13. That the general public have access to Bobst Library.

Along with this, students have issued a

SOLIDARITY STATEMENT

We, the students of Take Back NYU! declare our solidarity with the student [sleepovers] in Greece,
Italy, and the United Kingdom, as well as those of the University of
Rochester, the New School for Social Research, and with future
[sleepovers] to come in the name of democracy and student power. We stand
in solidarity with the University of Gaza, and with the people of
Palestine.


February 18, 2009

Who Is Poster Boy?

In his first interview since his arrest, Poster Boy talks to New York Press about what Poster Boy means as a movement.

Choice Q&A:

NYP: You said you liked comic books as a kid. If Poster Boy were a superhero, what would he look like?
PB: Oh man, I think automatically, V for Vendetta stuff or like Batman.

Read more.

February 17, 2009

The Daily Footprint 02/17/09

I CAN'T AFFORD TO LOVE NY
Metropolitan Ave

The Hipster Move

This could come in handy. [via Divine Caroline]

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Brooklyn, New Zealand

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Brooklyn, NZ sounds familiar...

From Wikipedia: “a friendly and vibrant village atmosphere [citation needed] which has attracted many young families whilst retaining its identity as older suburb with timber villas and varied architecture.”

(via Hudsn)

Free White Castle Burgers

Well, it is a recession: 60 Free White Castle Burgers! (Bed Stuy)

Choice quote:

"Because of the nasty-ass grease they cook the burgers in, the bottoms of the cases are soggy with onion griddle juice. Aside from that, they are in mint condition."

(via eater)

Takeshi Murata Talk at EAI Tonight

Takeshi Murata has been heralded as a video innovator by allowing for errors and glitches to transform the aesthetics of his work. Tonight, Murata will be speaking and screening his new work at EAI, another innovative art and technology organization dedicated to the preservation of media arts.

Hit up Facebook for more details.

We're Looking for Bloggers

We're looking for bloggers who *ideally* live in the neighborhood to cover local events, pop culture, and all other things not related to Chris Brown and Lindsay Lohan. Experience with MovableType and Photoshop are definitely a plus. Clips are helpful. Write us at mail[at]freewilliamsburg[dot]com.

February 16, 2009

Obama Dislocates Shoulder Reaching Across the Aisle

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Robert Lanham has a new article posted over on The Huffington Post:

"With all due respect to the president, he shouldn't have his arms and feet blocking the aisle," said Boehner, who sustained minor injuries. "Everyone knows he's lanky."

"If you ask me," Boehner continued, "this liberal concept of reaching across the aisle is dangerous. We need to keep those aisles clear. What if there was a fire and people needed a clear passage to the exits? We need to refocus our energies on tax cuts, not liberal spending and aisle-reaching." [...]

This wasn't Obama's first aisle-related mishap. Last week, his administration faced a major setback when New Hampshire Republican, Sen. Judd Gregg, announced that he would be withdrawing his nomination as Commerce secretary. Citing "irresolvable conflicts," Gregg insisted that Obama needs to reach out further if post-partisanship is to be achieved.

There are simply no aisles in the Oval Office" explained Gregg on Meet the Press. "And, unfortunately, that's where the president and I conducted most of our business. He did reach across his desk once or twice to shake my hand, but we were essentially standing right next to each other," said Gregg. Like a growing number of GOP lawmakers, Gregg has criticized the president's efforts at post-partisanship as inflated rhetoric.

"When he reached over to me across the desk, his arm was bent at the elbow," said Gregg with obvious irritation. "If Obama really respected my point of view, his arm would have been fully extended, preferably across some type of passageway separating opposing rows of chairs."

You can read it all here.

The Spirit of Apollo - Out Tomorrow

It's taken five years to complete, but the collaboration between Squeak E. Clean ad DJ Zegon, and their friends, friends of friends and musical heroes has arrived. Dozens of musicians have collaborated for N.A.S.A.'s The Spirit of Apollo which hits record stores tomorrow, and features guests like David Byrne, Seu Jorge, Spank Rock, M.I.A., Santogold, and Nick Zinner, Tom Waits, and Lykke Li (and A LOT, LOT more).

Here's the trailer, which should give you an excellent idea of what to expect:


February 15, 2009

Cheap Whiskey & A Broken Heart

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Deer Tick at the Bowery

I've got to say this was the perfect prelude to another New York Valentine's day. By that I mean, happiness is a boy who sings about heartbreak and sweet sweet love in the middle of an urban jungle of delights that is this city. That said, I will try my hardest not to be a cynic on this wonderful/depressing day- but I'm not making any promises.

Brooklyn's The Wait opened the night with a Creedence Clearwater meets The Ramones ditty. I've said it before, and I'll say it again- I'm loving the whole long haired 70s thing going on with the boys these days. Pure yummy. I got a chance to talk to singer/guitarist Joseph after the show. Turns out he's my regular bartender at Clem's who I couldn't recognize while holding a guitar. So stop in and have a cocktail, and maybe you'll be lucky enough to get a serenade.

Next was a band from Boston. I, well, I was busy taking whiskey shots which I swore off a few weeks ago- so yeah, they were from Boston.

And the whiskey, just the better to hear you with Mr. Tick. Setting the mood for the lonely with favorites like 'Little White Lies', the spirit was lifted when John J. McCauley exclaimed to the crowd that if you came with someone special it was time to sneak your hand in their back pocket for 'Spend the Night'. Highlight of the night was definitely the crowd sing-a-long of 'Ashamed', with a somber closing encore of 'Christ Jesus' coming in a close second. You said it Chris Pollack, 'it was all a dream'.

Now, I'm off to enjoy my Ballantines...

by Nicole Wasilewicz

February 13, 2009

The Daily Footprint 02/13/09

Love Saves the Day

Treasure Hunting for Valentines


View Larger Map

Steph Goralnick, a freelance graphic designer, cleverly hid 22 Valentine's Day packets around Williamsburg and it's up to you to get out there and find them!

i designed a set of valentines, woohoo! i was going to put them up for sale online, but then decided that since the economy is in a state of such deep suckage i would spread the love and give them all away for free in order to ensure that people have a little something to give to their friends, enemies, lovers, moms, coworkers, neighbors, secret crushes or total strangers on the subway.

i have scattered 22 packets of cards around town, all hidden within plain sight. if you'd like to go hunting for some, you can use this handy map to guide you. let me know if you find one!

Alright love pirates. Use this heart-shaped Google treasure map, and hurry, they're being picked up by the hour!

(via Gothamist)

WAGMAG Benefit Saturday

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If you've ever been gallery hopping around Brooklyn, I'm sure you found that WAGMAG was your easy handy guide. To ensure this Williamsburg staple continues to provide you the most up-to-date information and reviews of the Brooklyn art scene, Front Room Gallery will be hosting a benefit on Saturday. While the event is free, tickets for the raffle will run about 200 a piece. Fortunately, everyone is guaranteed a piece of art.

Lists of participating artists and galleries are below. Front Room Gallery is located at 147 Roebling Street.

Works by:
Amanda Alic, Glen Baldridge, Rachel Beach, Carla Berger, Shawn Bishop Leo, John Bjerklie, Cynthia Blum, Tyra Bombetto, John Breiner, Ken Butler,Victoria Calabro, Sarah Ching-Yu Sun, Vincent Como, Ethan Crenson, Gregory Curry, Rosie Cutler, Peggy Cyphers, Chris Dam, Lisa Dilillo, Robert Egert, Mark Esper, Ben Evans, Peter Fox, Jason Glasser, Howard Gross, Eric Guzman, Meghan Hayes, Sean Hemmerle, Ingrid Hertfelder, Amy Hill, Mary Hrbacek, Sarah Hubbs, Jude Hughes, Peter Krebs, Yuliya Lanina, Brian Leo, Stephen Maine, Karen Marston, Mark Masyga, Nesta Mayo, Shane McAdams, Jackie Meier, Mark Millroy, Jeanne Mischo, Loren Munk, Aaron Namenwirth, Jacob Ouilette, Don Pablo Pedro, William Powhida, Ellen Rand, Ross Racine, Ron Ritcher, Dorothy Robinson, Todd Rosenbaum, Tom Rosenthal, Emily Roz, Sante Scardillo, Ray Sell, Skewville, Jeremy Slater, Patricia Smith, Deborah V. Spiroff, Rodger Stevens, STO, Mary Anne Strandell, Gwenn Thomas, James Turek, Chris Twomey, Joanne Ungar, Kathleen Vance, Don Voisine, David Welles, Alun Williams, Oliver Zabel, Daniel Zeller and more...

From the Galleries:
440 Gallery, A.M. Richard, AdHoc, Art 101, ArtMoving, Leo Kesting, Ch'i, Cinders, Dam Stuhltrager, English Kills, Figureworks, Front Room, Fuse Works, Janet Kurnatowski, Galerie OPEN, Grace, Hogar Collection, HQ, Jack the Pelican, Klaus Von Nichtssagend , Like the Spice, Lumenhouse, McCaig-Welles, Momenta, Nurture Art, Open Source, Parker's Box, Pierogi, Pocket Utopia, Slate, Stripeman, Vertexlist, and more

February 12, 2009

Marnie Stern Has A Potty Mouth

Which makes us love her even more. Here she is doing her version of The Aristocrats:

FOTC sings "Friends" at The Gutter

Flight of the Conchords shot their video for "Friends" at W'burg's special little bowling alley, The Gutter. A source there says, "They were drinking Fisherman's Brew, and they were great." Neat.

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Williamsburg is Dead totes spotted it. Watch the little ditty here:

This May Be The Cutest Thing We've Ever Seen

Chairlift - Evident Utensil

Here, let Chairlift give your computer some video acid.

I tried to explain this over at BuzzFeed, but if you want a full "what the heck is going on here," read through this thread at Metafilter. But long story short, think pixels, keyframes, and a strong dosage of LSD injected into one's video compression units.

The band's in town this weekend, playing at BAM tomorrow (w/ Clap Your Hands Say Yeah) at 8pm and 92Y Tribeca Sunday at 1pm.

Parks Officials Present Plans For McCarren Pool

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From NY1:

The goal is to reopen the pool and provide a year-round recreation center, while preserving the existing landmark buildings and their unique archways.

"The brickwork is going to be replaced. It'll be brick that matches exactly how it is now," explained Martin Maher of the Parks Department.

The pool will not be as large as the original. Instead, it will be reconfigured to a U-shaped design accommodating 2,500 people. The middle will be a beach area in the summer and turn into an ice staking rink in the winter. Outdoor pavilions will be added on site to serve as changing stations.

Looks like what we already knew is now official. No more shows.

February 11, 2009

Valentine's Planning

Don’t fret about V-Day if you haven’t figured out what to do. Besides the Broken Hearts Ball, there’s plenty of other neighborhood action going on Friday/Saturday for lovers, singles, et al.

1. Celebrate Your Love at White Castle
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Perhaps the most romantic option of all is doing dinner at the Graham Avenue White Castle. I did it last year, and let me tell you there is NOTHING classier than drinking Diet Coke out of a champagne flute and holding hands with your date among the fake flowers and helium balloons.

Make sure to call (718) 899-8404 ext. 311 and make your reservation, because this place does get busy.


2. Prix Fixe V-Day Dins at Nita Nita
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If you aim higher than White Castle, this place is where it’s at. Forget burning a huge hole in your wallet and stressing about finding a good restaurant. Nita Nita on North 8th and Wythe is cozy, friendly, delicious, and the perfect choice.

3. Every 2nd Friday
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The flyer above spells it out pretty clearly – and while this might not be on Valentine’s Day proper, it’ll still be a nice distraction and a good way to get hammered and take advantage of some gallery openings. And perhaps a good old Friday the 13th one night stand?



4. The Habitat’s Singles Night on Valentines
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Greenpointers Blog gave us the heads up that one of our fave bars in the neighborhood will be hosting a special evening for singles to commiserate and get tipsy at a discounted price. Sounds like a good plan, readers!

5. And as mentioned below, The Broken Hearts Ball

Using Apple To Sell Your Condo

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So I saw this post on Brownstoner today, which mentions how Edge developer Jeff Levine keeps hinting at the possibility of an Apple store shacking up in their street-level retail space.

"There's no deal," Levine said, "But we are talking and they are interested." He also mentioned that there was interest from some grocery stores.

Note to all prospective buyers: This is never going to happen. At least I don't think so. What will end up happening, as Levine mentions, is some grocery store will sign that lease. And honestly, they'll do just fine selling all varieties of Thai noodles, organically-grown veggies and craft beers to the newly relocated Richsters living upstairs. But as for this constant Apple talk? Edge is just aligning themselves with a cool, hip-sounding company like Apple to appeal to what's left of the young, condo-buying bankers who wear Converses on the weekends.

In all honesty, that's just too far to make people walk off the L train. It's about half a mile! Have you ever walked half a mile for an iPod? No. You've walked half a mile with an iPod, and you would probably walk 500 more just to be the man who walks a thousand miles to fall down at Apple's door. Please. That Salvation Army talk was more realistic.

Where oh where will Apple end up?

Artists: Last Call for Spring Solo Show Submissions at 3rd Ward

3rd wants you to know that you have until 11:59 pm TONIGHT to submit to their Spring Solo Show Open Call..."YOUR chance for fame, fortune and an amazing Solo Show!"

This nationwide open call is open to artists working in all mediums - sculpture, photography, painting, printmaking, illustration, installation, graphic design, video, and more!

The Selected Artist will recieve:

• $1,000 cash grant
• 2-page spread in our quarterly publication
• 1-month residency at 3rd Ward with FULL facility access
• A solo exhibition in 3rd Ward's gallery, complete with a massive opening reception
• City-wide exposure – postcards, flyers, press!

Judges: Janet Ozzard, Editor at New York Magazine, Liz Dimmitt, Curator at Gawker Artists and Jarrett Gregory, Curator at the New Museum.

It's all brought to you by the fine folks at Gawker Artists.

SUBMIT NOW!

The Broken Hearts Ball

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This sounds right up our alley and the guest DJ (we won't spoil the surprise) is one of our favorites. From MyOpenBar

Join us for the soulful, fuzzy garage pop of Golden Triangle (11pm), Liquor Store's out-of-control punk jams (midnight), and a late night soul and rock n' roll dance party with New York Night Train's Mr. Jonathan Toubin (1am) and Brenda Brand. It's old-school; it's Bed-Stuy; it's Tip-Top. With an unannounced nighttime menu and surprise guests. RSVP here for $5 entry. Capacity is 100.

February 09, 2009

Thom Yorke and Paul McCartney Dancing Naked?

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Now here's a mysterious tidbit from Diplo's twitter feed:

@TheFatJew u still out? Im gonna die.. Thom york and dangermous were danin with paul mccartney naked

Yes, so that would be Thom Yorke of Radiohead and Danger Mouse, aka Brian Joseph Burton, who last night got naked at a Grammy afterparty and found themselves dancing with the former Beatle Sir Paul McCartney. Fucking A the Grammys are one crazy night, right Diplo? I hope they didn't think this was one of those "what happens at the Grammys, stays at the Grammys" kinda things...

Good find, lisa.

This Is Guaranteed To Make You Sick

Somehow, we have a little less sympathy for the Times' financial burdens after reading this story they crassly decided to print. You Try to Live on 500K in This Town. [Thanks Jeff]

Williamsburg More Diverse Than We Realized

From our mailbag:
Hey guys, my rottie met a pig yesterday at mccarren park. I talked to the owner of the pig. Apparently he lives in an apartment.

Chili Takedown Results & Aftermath

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photos by angela cranford

We got beefed up at the insanely packed Chili Takedown at Union Pool yesterday, and seriously folks, there was some good eatin' in that sardine can. Matt did a pretty good job of managing the herd, which saw over 35 chili chefs serve up their best medleys. My personal favorite was full of gamey meats like Quail, Boar and the like, but the surging crowd, and the judges, chose otherwise. Here are the official results:

The Judges' Choice:
1. Katie Feola and Anne Garrett's - #11 Pam Brown White Chili (It was stage left. And delicious.)
2. Nick Suarez - #7 “If You Like it Then You Shoulda’ Put a Ring on it” Chili
3. Theo Peck - #18 “Whoremel”

The People's Choice:
1. Theo Peck - won $100 bucks, was set up stage right and had homemade sausage in it. Also won last month's s'MACdown with this mac n' cheese recipe.
2. Steve Cash
3. Nick Suarez

Next month, chef's turn their focus to bacon for the Bacon Takedown. We'll add the info when we get it.

More coverage here and here.

More pics after the jump....

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photos by angela cranford

Hey America: This is why you're fat!

There's a new tumblr, "where dreams become heart attacks," to show just why you're so fat, America.

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Visit THISISWHYYOU'REFAT and submit your own!

February 07, 2009

Spotted: Frooz

Meet your neighborhood beer maiden serving your favorite German beers while working on her film career.

Frooz

Name: Frooz

Profession: Waitress at Biergarten / Independent Film Maker

You go by Frooz, how did that nickname catch on?
It's a shortened version of my last name. In high school I went by Froozdogg and there were sayings like “you frooz, you loose” and "you're froozen for a bruisin." It wasn't long till everyone from teachers to students just started calling me Frooz.

When not waitressing at the Beirgarten where would one find you?

Chilling with my Dogs Moosh and Charlie at the basketball courts of the school on Grand. Dogs really aren't suppose to be there but its a lot closer to my house and so much bigger than the dog park. Oh, and Zebulon, I am always at Zebulon with my usual crew.

I went to your premier of the your movie on the Hitch Hiking Game at Monkey Town and it was an outrageous success, Have you been working on anything since?
Yeah, I am actually working on some stuff with some friends that live in my building. I have yet to figure out the mathematics and process but its going to be shot in this neighborhood featuring all of my friends, artists, and inspiring people in the summer time.

Do you have any claims to fame?
Um, on north 3rd and wythe there is a cement drawing dedicated to my dogs. Oh, and I am in a contest to win the best job in the world where the grand prize is to live and work on an island.
Vote for frooz here!

The Random Beauty of "25 Random Things"

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FREEwilliamsburg founder Robert Lanham has a cover story on the "25 Random Things" trend. Consider it a backlash against the backlash:

I was in the middle of typing up my "25 Random Things About Me" list on Facebook when a funny thing happened. I hit clear and decided to abandon the whole time-wasting endeavor. I'd made it through what I intended to be my sole entry before coming to my senses:

1. I like certain books and films and things that taste good. Also, kittens. Thanks for including me in this important social experiment. Now, please stop tagging me. KEEP READING

Blank Dogs, Woods, Wavves, Nodzzz Tonight and Sunday

Last night a great bill played Market Hotel. You're in luck because almost the exact same lineup will be playing tonight at Less Artists More Condos and Sunday with Barnard's WBAR.

My personal faves Woods are worth the trek to any of these shows. But if you care about the hype factor, word on the street is Wavves is about to blow up big time.

====| SATURDAY 2/7 @ LESS ARTISTS MORE CONDOS |====
:: Blank Dogs
:::: Woods
:::::: Wavves ———- http://myspace.com/wavves
:::::::: Nodzzz ——— http://myspace.com/nodzzz
:::::::::: Gary War
| LESS ARTISTS MORE CONDOS |
132 West 3rd St @ 6th Ave | Greenwich Village, Manhattan
BDFVACE-West 4th St, 1-Christopher St | 8pm | all ages | $10
| MYSPACE |– http://myspace.com/lessartistsmorecondos

====| SUNDAY 2/8 –| 2PM |– @ UNDERGROUND LOUNGE |====
|| WBAR BARNARD COLLEGE RADIO PRESENTS
|| Blank Dogs
|||| Woods
|||||| Wavves ———- http://myspace.com/wavves
|||||||| Nodzzz ——— http://myspace.com/nodzzz
| UNDERGROUND LOUNGE |
955 West End Ave @ 107th St | Morningside Heights, Manhattan
1-110th St, B/C-110th St | –| 2PM |– | $donation | all ages

February 06, 2009

Chili Takedown at U. Pool Sunday

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Above picture by Flickr user brooklyn.native, taken at last August's Chili Takedown at Union Pool.

The most important chili tasting event in the history of the past few months is going down this Sunday at Union Pool, where 30 competitors will gather to have their chili judged by Williamsburg is Dead's Keith Wagstaff and TONY's Gabriella Gershenson for Matt Timms' Chili Takedown. Prepare to marvel at the variety of special ingredients - from buffalo to beer to chocolate to sewer rats (if yer lucky!) - as the judges name the top chili and the audience names it. Top chili makers win $100 and prizes "in the form of cookware and cookbooks."

More info at The Feedbag.

Minor, minor disclosure: My chili will be there, fists swingin'.

Casting Young Creative Types and Professionals

And they're paying $200. Info after the jump

UT CASTING 09

Excalibrah

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Ok, this shit needs to go viral. DJ Hammond of Athens' Je Suis France just released a spoofy, Flight of the Conchords-esque concept record called Excalibrah. "It's a joke project I do for my fantasy football league kinda as an alter ego," he informs. It's epically retarded—and we mean that in a good way. We could give a damn about fantasy football, but how can you not appreaciate titles like "Futurewings/Sexfood" and "Gandalf vs. Neo." Just go grab it... it's free. And the music is actually amazing catchy. [thanks Christina]

Red Bull Snowscrapers: Pictures

Last night we went to scope out the Red Bull Snowscrapers event over in East River Park, where top riders Shawn White, Travis Rice, and Terje Haakonsen got blasted by New Jersian Shayne Pospisil. Aside from a rather vicious onslaught of stage 1 hypothermia, we came back with a few pictures to share. Photos by yours truly and Angela Cranford.

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two more after the jump...

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February 05, 2009

The Daily Footprint 02/05/09

Objectumsexuals

This is simply the most bizarre shit we have ever seen. People who fall in love with objects. [Via Jezebel]

Check out the documentary, Married To The Eiffel Tower [Part 1] , here

The February 2009 Movie Preview

by Dave Thomas

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Gomorra

Looks like your best movie options this month are to stay in making lousy Oscar predictions and hoping that Dollhouse doesn't suck.

FEBRUARY 6

HE'S JUST NOT THAT INTO YOU

WHAT'S THE PITCH?
Love, Not Actually

WILL IT SUCK?
If this were a TV show, I'd have more confidence. Director Ken Kwapis has helmed some solid eps of The Office and Freaks and Geeks. The one thing I didn't like about his Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants, on the other hand, was the direction. Never saw Vibes or Dunstin Checks In, though. And the writers did Never Been Kissed.

Remarkably recognizable casting, though: Jennifers Aniston and Connelly, Scarlett Johansson, Drew Barrymore, Ben Affleck...but I'm most psyched to see Justin Long and Ginnifer Goodwin together again for the first time since Ed.

HOW WELL WILL IT DO?
A little bit of competition from Dance Flick and Pink Panther 2 this week, but next week is the real bear, Confessions of a Shopaholic. $61mil.

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THE PINK PANTHER 2

WHAT'S THE PITCH?
This is what you get for going to see Pink Panther 1, America.

WILL IT SUCK?
Even during the trailer I was going "Oh, my God, is this thing still going?" They've added some top shelf talent (John Cleese, Alfred Molina, Andy Garcia, Aishwarya Rai) but they kind of had that already (Cleese replaces Kevin Kline). Agent Cody Banks and One Night at McCool's director Harald Zwart takes over for Night at the Museum 2-bound Shawn Levy and the writers are brand new. As with the first, Martin has a screenplay co-credit but I just refuse to believe it.

HOW WELL WILL IT DO?
The only thing with this high of a profile for miles around is Friday the 13th, and that's a completely different demographic (although a Clouseau/Jason crossover flick would rock). $71mil.

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CORALINE

WHAT'S THE PITCH?
Girl finds a parallel universe with an alternative, perfect family for her...or is it?

WILL IT SUCK?

Pop quiz: Who directed The Nightmare Before Christmas? If you said Tim Burton, you are wrong. It was this guy, who now helms this 3D stop motion animation fest, adapting it from Neil Gaiman's book. The cherry on top? John Hodgman graduates to voice work.

HOW WELL WILL IT DO?
Pink Panther 2 is going to nab most of the kid audience, although this skews slightly older. $39mil.

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PUSH

WHAT'S THE PITCH?
Heroes. Except...no, wait, it's pretty much Heroes.

WILL IT SUCK?
Before you think, "Oh, there goes another comic book adaptation," the comic was created co-currently with the movie. So there. Still not psyched. Director Paul McGuigan's Lucky Number Slevin was okay. Haven't really heard of anything the writer did. I'm kind of a sucker for these special abilities stories but I'm not delusional about its chances. Nice to see Dakota Fanning not play "cute" for once.

HOW WELL WILL IT DO?
There is just way too much competition for this to get the Jumper cash for which it is clearly striving. $40mil.

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FANBOYS

WHAT'S THE PITCH?
Geeks attempt to steal a print of The Phantom Menace before its release so their sick friend can see it before he dies.

WILL IT SUCK?
Film has had plenty of time to get vetted in its long road to release, and the version showed at comic-con last year seemed to get plaudits. Not loving the trailer, but it did produce what may be my favorite line from a trailer in 2008, "I'm William Shatner. I can score anything." Looks like there'll be a lot of nifty cameos. But let's cut to brass tacks; any movie about Star Wars geeks that's even halfway decent has me at hello.

HOW WELL WILL IT DO?
Will probably benefit from all the internet buzz surrounding its oft-delayed release. $9mil.

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FEBRUARY 13
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CONFESSIONS OF A SHOPAHOLIC

WHAT'S THE PITCH?
How to Lose a Credit Rating in 10 Days

WILL IT SUCK?
They've assembled some degree of talent behind the camera. Director P. J. Hogan obviously knows his way around a romantic comedy (My Best Friend's Wedding, Muriel's Wedding). And the gaggle of writers have penned such fare as Ally McBeal and the excellent-but-overlooked Calendar Girls. And Isla Fisher is a funny, funny woman. That having been said, the trailer does not inspire confidence.

HOW WELL WILL IT DO?
Has the name recognition of the novels, just like He's Just Not That Into You from the week before, but without its cast. Plus, do people really want to see a movie about shopping in a down economy? (I could see that going either way, actually.) $46mil.

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THE INTERNATIONAL

WHAT'S THE PITCH?
Clive Owen and Naomi Watts vs. Big Evil Bank

WILL IT SUCK?
I recently rewatched director Tom Tykwer's Run Lola Run and it holds up. Of course, he also wrote that. He only directed this. So at least I can say the action will probably be cool. (Don't know much about the writer.) Also, I'm sure Armin Mueller-Stahl will kick ass.

HOW WELL WILL IT DO?
Crowded marketplace, but not crowded with thrillers. $55mil.

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UNDER THE SEA 3D

WHAT'S THE PITCH?
Remember that scene in The Little Mermaid where they sing that song about being under the sea? Well, this is just like that except it's not animated, they're not singing and Jim Carrey is narrating.

WILL IT SUCK?
Deep Sea, the 3D IMAX underwater flick that precedes this, was supposed to be da bom, and this has the same director. Other than that, it's a bunch of fish on a big fuckin' screen in 3D, what more do you want?

HOW WELL WILL IT DO?
This is the first time, as far as I can tell, that an IMAX nature doc is getting a wide release in non-IMAX theaters (anyone feel free to correct me if I'm wrong). So it's kind of unprecedented. I can tell you that Deep Sea did damn well on its run...but that lasted two years. $10mil.

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FRIDAY THE 13TH

WHAT'S THE PITCH?
Somehow they waited until now to do this horror remake.

WILL IT SUCK?
Well, did you like the Texas Chainsaw remake? Same director. Writers from Freddy vs. Jason, but I don't think this will be as funny. But hey, Dick from Veronica Mars is up in here!

HOW WELL WILL IT DO?
Unlike last month, horror is scarce in February. Oh, and I think people have heard of the title before. $61mil.

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TWO LOVERS

WHAT'S THE PITCH?
Joaquin Phoenix tries to choose between Gwyneth Paltrow and Vinessa Shaw before giving it all up to become a rapper. That last part's only happening in real life.

WILL IT SUCK?
Early buzz is mixed with audiences being more in love than critics, which echoes co-writer/director James Gray's last effort, We Own the Night.

HOW WELL WILL IT DO?
The fact that it's Phoenix's last performance might draw some onlookers. $4mil.

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GOMORRA

WHAT'S THE PITCH?
Crime drama revolving around the notoriously vicious Naples underworld.

WILL IT SUCK?
Early buzz is fantastic. Won all sorts of international kudos last year, including the Grand Prize at Cannes (and, no, I don't know how that differs from the Palm D'Or). In spite of this, somehow failed to make the Oscar shortlist for Best Foreign Film.

HOW WELL WILL IT DO?
Could have used the publicity of an Oscar nod. $2mil.

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FEBRUARY 20
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TYLER PERRY'S MADEA GOES TO JAIL

WHAT'S THE PITCH?
Read the title. Oh, and Rudy Huxtable grows up to be a ho.

WILL IT SUCK?
If you liked all the other Tyler Perry films, no. And this one has Dr. Phil!

HOW WELL WILL IT DO?
Tyler Perry films are fairly competition-proof. Especially when Madea's in the title. $53mil.

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YOUTH IN REVOLT

WHAT'S THE PITCH?
Coming of age story with Michael Cera.

WILL IT SUCK?
Based on the popular series by C.D. Payne. From Good Girl and Chuck & Buck director Miguel Arteta. Adapted by Charlie Bartlett screenwriter Gustin Nash. Cast includes Justin Long, Ray Liotta, Steve Buscemi, Jean Smart, Fred Willard and M. Emmet Walsh. I'd say the stars have aligned.

HOW WELL WILL IT DO?
The teen demo has a lot more distractions right about now, including Friday the 13th and Shopaholic from the previous week, Fired Up this week and the Jonas Bros. next week. $15mil.

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FIRED UP

WHAT'S THE PITCH?
Two high school football players pose as cheerleaders at a cheerleading camp cos, you know, its so hard to get laid as a high school football player.

WILL IT SUCK?
A lot of unkowns here. Director William Gluck has produced some good TV (Andy Richter Controls the Universe) but hasn't directed before. And writer's a newbie. Trailer's generic.

HOW WELL WILL IT DO?
A lot of competition for the teen audience right now. Should outdo Youth at least. $32mil.

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FEBRUARY 27
-------------------------------------------

JONAS BROTHERS: THE 3D CONCERT EXPERIENCE

WHAT'S THE PITCH?
Kind of like The Last Waltz, but with The Jonas Brothers. And in 3D.


WILL IT SUCK?
Really? Is the choice of director going to make ANY difference in whether or not you want to spend 90 minutes with the Jonas Brothers? If Peter Fucking Jackson directed it, and you normally hated the Jonas Brothers, would you turn around and say, "Shit, Fool! Why didn't you SAY Peter Jackson wuz directing this bitch!"

I didn't think so. And, yeah, it's the same guy who directed the Miley Cyrus concert film.

HOW WELL WILL IT DO?
Unless there's a Cheetah Girls movie coming out that I don't know about, this has no competition. $66mil.

-------------------------------------------

STREET FIGHTER: THE LEGEND OF CHUN-LI

WHAT'S THE PITCH?
I don't know if it's best to think of this as a reboot of the 1994 movie version of the game, or just a version with the exact same plot as the Mortal Kombat movie.

WILL IT SUCK?
Okay, I'm one of the few guys who actually liked Romeo Must Die, but even that doesn't make up for director Andrzej Bartkowiak's Cradle 2 the Grave, Exit Wounds, or Doom.

HOW WELL WILL IT DO?
Even without Watchmen blowing everything out of the fanboy water next week, I don't think anyone was clamoring for a Street Fighter movie to begin with. $31mil.

-------------------------------------------

crossing.jpg

CROSSING OVER

WHAT'S THE PITCH?
Traffic for illegal immigration.

WILL IT SUCK?
I'll give writer/director Wayne Kramer some credit. The Cooler was renowned and Running Scared (not that one, that one was freakin' perfect) was underrated in its own little fucked-up way, but the trailer for this just looks god-awful. Like some bad TV show about immigration as opposed to a good movie. It is interesting to see Harrison Ford in a limited release, but still.

HOW WELL WILL IT DO?
Not much competition. And the name-recognition could help. $8mil.

-------------------------------------------

ASSASSINATION OF A HIGH SCHOOL PRESIDENT

WHAT'S THE PITCH?
A comedic-noir-ish investigation of missing SATs at a high school.

WILL IT SUCK?
Hit at Sundance '08. Early buzz is good. Supposed to have a bit of a Brick vibe.

HOW WELL WILL IT DO?
Will probably be a casualty of Yari Film Group's economic woes. $2mil.

Next month: Zack Snyder's moment of truth.

Snowboarders Compete Tonight Across The River

2009_02_snowscrapers3.jpg
Photo by Tien Mao, c/o Gothamist

16 of the world's top snowboarders are in town for tonight's Red Bull Snowscrapers competition, where they launch off a 150-foot long, 9-story ramp in East River Park for a piece of the $100,000 purse. Gothamist, ever the early risers, got some sick shots from the top of the ramp this morning as the sun rose over the city. I've posted one above, but for the rest, click through to Tien Mao's gallery at Gothamist.

Catch it all starting this afternoon at 3p.m., with the final jam session kicking off at 7:45. And once the boards are off, let Anthrax sing you to sleep with their sweet lullabies, starting at 9.

February 04, 2009

Free Friday

The day after tomorrow has a lot going on, so get your plans in order:

1. Dark Was The Night Listening Party @ Stanton Public
DWTN nyc flyer.jpg

Dark Was The Night is a new compilation from 4AD records, which includes a slew of neat bands and songs. Everyone from Andrew Bird to Yeasayer to Iron and Wine contributed tracks to fundraise for the Red Hot Organization - an international charity dedicated to raising funds and awareness for HIV and AIDS.

Its official release date is February 16th, but if you RSVP at Insound you can hit the listening party Friday night and swill some free Budweiser while you’re at it.

8 PM
17 Stanton Street


2. Cheeseburger and Andrew W.K. @ Santos Party House


andrewwkcheese.png

Fans of Adult Swim, Cheeseburger, and/or Andrew W.K. rejoice – the three forces are combining for a $0 show on Friday.
Santos says:

“Hosted by Jon Glaser, New York based writer and star of Adult Swim's new show Delocated!, the event will feature a solo performance by Andrew W.K. and also a performance by New York's very own Cheeseburger. _Christy Karacas of Cheeseburger is also co-creator of Adult Swim's Superjail!.”

Get there early (music starts at 7:30 pm) because again, admission is on a first come, first serve basis.


6:30 PM
96 Lafayette Street

Rhizome Call for 2010 Commission

Marfa-Ring-Logo-Small.gif
Image C/O Marfaring.com

Rhizome is perhaps my favorite art and technology organization. Right now, it's affiliated with the New Museum. It's call for 2010 Commisions are out now. See below for details:

Founded in 2001, the Rhizome Commissions Program is designed to support emerging artists with financial and institutional resources. In the seventh year of funding for the Program, Rhizome will award grants, with amounts ranging from $1000 to $5000, for the creation of significant works of new media art. This includes projects that creatively engage new and networked technologies to works that reflect on the impact of these tools and media in a variety of forms. Commissioned works can take the final form of online works, performance, video, installation or sound art. Projects can be made for the context of the gallery, the public, the web or networked devices. Artists who receive a commission will also be invited to speak at Rhizome's affiliate, the New Museum of Contemporary Art, and to archive their work in the ArtBase, a comprehensive online art collection.

2009's commissions included a project called Marfa Ring by Claire L. Evans, Jonah Bechtolt, and Aaron "Flint" Jamison--two of them are better known as YACHT.

In other related Rhizome news, Marisa Olson has a great review of Stage II at The Project gallery--including work by my current favorite music/art collective Lucky Dragons

Carles of HRO, I bro-love you.

runoff.JPG

The Village Voice attempted to have a serious cyber-chat interview with the "alt"-imate blog bro, Carles of Hipster Runoff, and I can't quite figure out what to make of the outcome. What I do know is that I just cannot wait for Carles' "post-bloghouse, or maybe post-Merriweather-post-core" EP to drop. Way to not "expose yourself", bro!

The Voice asks, where are you Carles? Who are you? And Carles responds:

I am in a relatively "alt" area, but I think the whole concept of the site is "being able to justify your alternative existence" by monitoring websites that are theoretically on the bleeding edge of culture. So while a tween may be disconnected from "fitting in" at his local high school with kids who shop at the local mall, he can find acceptance on the Internet through alternative websites, blogs, social networks, and e-commerce shops. That's sort of why I feel like the "Carles" part of HRO is insignificant, and it probably makes the site easier to digest without "some dude" attached to it. It's more of a naive, bro-like, third-person omniscient tone.

Read the rest, and visit HRO.

McCarren Park Pool Meeting Moved

The McCarren Park Pool renovations public update that was scheduled for today has been moved to February 10th at 6:30 pm at the Swinging 60's Senior Citizens Center (211 Ainslie St., corner of Manhattan Ave.). In case you forgot, The Pool is being renovated to provide swimming in the summer, year round recreation in the former bathhouse, and the design accommodates the potential for skating in the winter and off-season performances. The key phrase there is off-season performances, which basically means it's not time to pack away your MGMT headbands just yet.

update via Nag

Ex-Masturbators Speak Out

The Passion for Christ Movement just launched its new anti-masturbation campaign. That's right, Jesus prefers that you just stain your sheets with those sinful wet dreams, boys and girls. No touching! We totally want a shirt. Should we get EX-fornicator, EX-homosexual, or EX-masturbator? Decisons, decisions....

ex-masturbator-shirt-22082-1233763796-7.jpg

From an ex-masturbator and member of The Passion for Christ Movement's blog:

This is the thing that many people do but don't really talk about, especially women. It's looked on as not ladylike and not pure. It's a shameful thing for many women and men alike. I struggled with masturbation for many years but this wasn't the only sexually immoral thing that I was enslaved to. I started masturbating as early as 7th or 8th grade, but overall my imprisonment to lust started as early as 4 or 5 years of age. When I was a little girl, I had a friend that I played with. Something must have happened to her because it was from playing with her that I had my first sexual experience. After this one time experience I wasn't the same and I developed homosexual tendencies as well. The seed of lust was planted and grew to maturity in my heart. I went from "humping" the floors, to sexually stimulate myself, to full on masturbation, which became my most shameful secret. The frequency to which I masturbated and the degree to which I did it was so bad that I actually ended up tearing the tissue on my clitoris. This sent me into depression for months because I thought I had mutilated myself. I had contemplated suicide because of it but I still didn't stop. The real battle began for me when I desired freedom.
Well, if you've been doing it since you were 4 and are prone to humping floors, maybe it is shameful. You actually tore you're clitoris? Who are these people?!

Check out their video after the jump. [hat tip Buzzfeed]

February 03, 2009

The Daily Footprint 02/03/09


Snow Day- South 1st street and Berry

Funny Spammer Wants To Sell Me Curtains

I got this funny e-mail the other day that I'm pretty sure is spam, but then again part of me wishes that someone named Brain out there really, really wants me to sell them some curtains.

It read:

My name is Brain and I am sending you an email regarding an order of some Curtains.I will like you to e-mail me back with the best types of Curtains that you have now and the price range for each and also the types of credit card you accept?Please include your contact number and name.

Is this some kinda code or something? Anybody want to sell ol' Brain some curtains? Email him.

Don't F**k With Christian

Here's a remix of Christian Bale's expletive-filled tirade, which has been circulating around for the past day or two. The video is hysterical, but alas my crush on this guy has officially been quelled. Forever.

AGHHH:


c/o RevoLucian

February 01, 2009

The Daily Footprint 02/1/09


Grand and Bedford Ave

February Playlist

There have been a few excellent releases in the past months that deserve extra attention (from artists like A.C. Newman, Max Tundra and Low vs Diamond). But what’s even better is what we have to look forward to in February – new LPs like N.A.S.A.’s “The Spirit of Apollo” and “Tight Knit” from Vetiver. We’ve jumbled it together with a few randoms into a mix for this short, divine month.


feb playlist.png


1. A.C. Newman - “There Are Maybe Ten Or Twelve” A.C. Newman - Get Guilty (Bonus Track Version) - There Are Maybe Ten or Twelve...

2. Harlem - “Caroline” - listen via MySpace.

3. Army Navy - “My Thin Sides” Army Navy - Army Navy - My Thin Sides

4. Cut Off Your Hands - “Oh Girl” – check it out at last.fm.

5. Mt. St. Helens Vietnam Band - “Anchors Dropped” – listen to this and a few other songs from their forthcoming record over at The Hype Machine..

6. Hey Willpower - “Hundredaire” Hey Willpower - Dance - EP - Hundredaire

7. Little Boots - “Stuck On Repeat” Little Boots - Arecibo - EP - Stuck On Repeat

8. N.A.S.A. (feat. Spank Rock, M.I.A., Santogold & Nick Zinner) - “Whachadoin?” – get this for free from RCRDLBL.com.

9. Max Tundra - “Which Song” Max Tundra - Parallax Error Beheads You - Which Song

10. Low vs. Diamond - “Don’t Forget Sister” Low vs Diamond - Low vs Diamond - Don't Forget Sister

11. Vetiver - “Everyday” - c/o i guess i'm floating.

12. The Boxer Rebellion - “Flashing Red Light Means Go” The Boxer Rebellion - Union - Flashing Red Light Means Go

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