Stereo MCs Video Trilogy

I love slow-motion, gritty, British slice o’ life dramas, so maybe this mini-trilogy by the UK hip-poppers Stereo MCs is a bit dull for some viewers, but it’s a really nice unison of the three individual songs off their new album with a rather tender overarching storyline. They’re like Andrea Arnold-via-Lynne Ramsay-crossed with Tricky music videos. Superb.

Part 1 – “Boy”

Part 2 – “Tales”

Part 3 – “Far Out Feeling”

All songs are from the MCs’ forthcoming album Emporer’s Nightingale. Find out more about the band and the album (plus download a new mixtape for free!) at their website.

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The Happiest Mean Song Ever.

Cee Lo Green might just have made one of the best bad-word-infused songs of this past decade. (The best of the 90s decade was clearly Rage Against the Machine’s “Freedom”). I’ve been playing Cee Lo’s new track “Fuck You” all week and I can’t help but smile every time I hear it. It’s really hard to pull off a song with a title and a refrain that involve swearing at someone, but the feat has now been accomplished. The song has two official videos in circulation, one better suited to it than the other.

Check out this one first and get hooked on “Fuck You.”

DJ Shadow Remix Project Offers Up Pleasant Surprises

DJ Shadow has always been one of the more “artistic” of DJs on the dance music scene, offering up some of the smoothest tracks of the 90s and 2000s with Endtroducing and The Private Press (not mention his work with the similarly inspiring James LaVelle).

I’ll admit, when I recently learned that he’d played a part in the DJ Hero videogame I grew a little concerned, I feared he may be moving his musical stylings in to the more mainstream dance culture. But, then soon after that, I heard about this “remix project” which appears to have taken some clues from the Internet marketing guru that is Trent Reznor, and allows virtually anyone to upload their own remixes of Shadow tracks.

Yes, there is a prize for the one voted the best overall: $250 to use at the Shadow online store. And while that’s sort of a narcissistic deal, at least it’s more than TR was giving up.

Check out the top two tracks here. My personal fave is “Missing On The Motorway (Shadow Vs. Everything But The Girl),” remixed by Tiger Mendoza (AKA Ian De Quadros). There is, however, a great remix if “Midnight in a Perfect World” which is first on the player of all the submitted mixes so far. It’s trip-hop at it’s finest.

Rage Against the Republicans

Well, ok, really it should read Rage Against the Police. In fact, I’m not sure why RATM always get pegged as being so political when in my opinion many of their songs/on-stage rantings/diatribes actually eviscerate the meaning behind the enforcement of law as opposed to the meaning behind the enforcement of government. So it seems only apropos that they would show up at the end of a pre-planned music festival taking place outside the Republican National Convention, and then bitch about not being let on stage to play. I mean, if you show up late to a music festival, do they usually let you play?

At any rate, here they are (flanked by a bodyguard? – how democratic does that seem?) squawking about peaceful protesting and trying to incite the riot police patrolling the RNC to turn their guns on the “people inside.” Oh- and Zack raps the first verse of “Bulls on Parade” (did he forget the second?) while Tom beatboxes his way out of being the once amazing guitarist I used to remember him as.

Seriously though, you have to admit, this is almost as funny/painful as watching the RNC itself.

And it’s not only that, but watching this acapella version of these RATM songs really just proves how phenomenal of a band they are when they actually play their instruments. Otherwise, it just boils down to angry gangsta rap. And I can get the gist of that from just putting on one of my old Ice Cube records.

One Day As A Lion

Brilliant news I heard a few days ago was of this Zack De La Rocha / Jon Theodore mash up in the form of a 5-track EP dropping later this month.

Not so brilliant news I heard a few days ago was that none of the tracks have been made available yet and I have to wait!

Want more info? Here’s the press release:

“One Day As A Lion is both a warning delivered and a promise kept.”

“A defiant affirmation of the possibilities that exist in the space between kick and snare. It’s a sonic reflection of the visceral tension between a picturesque fabricated cultural landscape, and the brutal socioeconomic realities it attempts to mask. One Day As A Lion is a recorded interaction between Zack de la Rocha and Jon Theodore from Los Angeles, California.”

“The name taken from the infamous 1970 black and white, captured by legendary Chicano photographer George Rodriguez featuring a center framed tag on a white wall in an unspecified section of Boyle Heights. It reads: ‘It’s better to live one day as a lion, than a thousand years as a lamb.’ This record is a stripped down attempt to realize this sentiment in sound.”

I Want My Leonard Cohen Afterbirth

After 14 years Leonard Cohen is finally playing live shows again and I’m holding out hope that the tour dates listed so far are not the extent of his travels. Since his site only shows through August, but promises a “2008/09” world tour I rest a little easier.

In the meantime, check out this audience footage of the hit “Everybody Knows” (and one of my personal faves). Watch it for the audio before the video though since the cinematographer obviously was.

Oh, and for those of you who have no clue who a Leonard Cohen is, here’s “Everybody Nose” by N.E.R.D.