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Houses in Motion: Astonishing ‘new’ 1980 Talking Heads concert surfaces
01:58 pm


Talking Heads


“The big difference between us and punk groups is that we like KC and the Sunshine Band. You ask Johnny Rotten if he likes KC and the Sunshine Band and he’ll blow snot in your face.

—Chris Frantz

For me, the apex of the Talking Heads’ career was, hands down, Remain in Light and the subsequent tour with the expanded “Afro-funk orchestra”  line-up featuring future King Crimson guitar god Adrian Belew wringing all kinds of impossible noises out of his guitar. When the band released their (excellent) Chronology DVD in 2011, it included a clip of an astonishing 1980 performance of “Crosseyed and Painless” taped at the Capitol Theatre in Passaic, NJ, probably one of the few mid-sized concert halls of that era to have installed a multi-camera video system. Where there’s one number, there tends to be, you know, an entire show, as I and many other Talking Heads fans mused upon seeing that tantalizing excerpt and now the whole thing was posted recently at the Talking Heads page at Music Vault.

0:00:00 - Psycho Killer
0:05:45 - Warning Sign
0:11:34 - Stay Hungry
0:15:25 - Cities
0:20:10 - I Zimbra
0:24:41 - Drugs
0:29:23 - Once In A Lifetime
0:35:11 - Animals
0:39:28 - Houses In Motion
0:45:56 - Born Under Punches (The Heat Goes On)
0:53:05 - Crosseyed And Painless
0:59:30 - Life During Wartime
1:04:56 - Take Me To The River
1:11:02 - The Great Curve

David Byrne - lead vocals, guitar
Jerry Harrison - guitar, keyboards, vocals
Tina Weymouth - bass, keyboards, guitar, vocals
Chris Frantz - drums, vocals
Adrian Belew - lead guitar, vocals
Bernie Worrell - keyboards
Busta Cherry Jones - bass
Steve Scales - percussion
Dolette McDonald - vocals

This setlist is as good as any Talking Heads show ever got and the build up to the synapse-burning finale of “The Great Curve” makes this my favorite long form Talking Heads show (I’d take this over Stop Making Sense any day, they’d already peaked by then.) This is so… fresh and joyful sounding. Timeless. If this doesn’t provide you with some sort of MASSIVE eargasm, you simply don’t like music. Or maybe you fear it?

Posted by Richard Metzger | Discussion
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Video demonstrates how mind-numbingly formulaic and shitty Country pop music has become
01:19 pm


Country Music

If you need any proof of how much Country pop music sucks nowadays, look no further than this video which dissects and mashes-up six Country songs. All of them sound alike. There ain’t nothin’ “original” added to the mix. “Original” never got anywhere close to the these songs to begin with!

In fact, the evidence so damning, YouTuber Sir Mashalot created his own Top 40 Country pop song.

I created this mashup as an experiment to see if I was crazy, or if I really was hearing the same hit country song over and over again, just sung by different artists. Turns out I wasn’t crazy…

The offending songs put under the microscope for evaluation are:

“Sure Be Cool If You Did”- Blake Shelton
“Drunk on You”- Luke Bryan
“Chillin’ It”- Cole Swindell
“Close Your Eyes”- Parmalee
“This is How We Roll”- Florida Georgia Line
“Ready, Set, Roll”- Chase Rice

With thanks to Kevin K!

Posted by Tara McGinley | Discussion
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Yep, there’s a ‘Belfie Stick’ now so you can take better photos of your ass
12:11 pm


Belfie Stick

I can’t even believe I’m typing these words, but here goes: For a mere $79.99 you, yes YOU, can now take better shots of your own ass from any angle (without dropping your camera) with the help of the BelfieStick. Apparently this is a very real problem in the 21st century and the fine folks at have come up this inventive solution.

With our bendable stick, you can position your back side without the need of a mirror and shoot the exact angle you are looking for. Bend in ways you never thought possible with our patent-pending design!

“Our users are our biggest indicator of selfie trends being that it’s the type of photo they post most often,” Kevin Deegan, the chief technology office of, told Business Insider. “We’ve noticed a huge spike in users taking butt selfies in recent months, so the natural next step was for us to develop a device to assist our users in taking one.”

The worst part about of all of this is when I went to the BelfieStick site... they were SOLD OUT! Color me shocked that there’s an insane demand for BelfieSticks. But there is. Sad, right?

Here are a few testimonials:

I’m really, really hoping this just some Internet hoax. If not, we—as a human race—have officially lost our goddamned marbles.

via Geekologie

Posted by Tara McGinley | Discussion
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A recording of Carl Sagan saying the word ‘billions’ once, but stretched for an entire hour
12:11 pm


Carl Sagan

The sound recording below reminds me of the ambient drone surrounding the spacecraft that hovers over the barren lunar surface before Dr. Heywood Floyd and crew visit the obelisk in Kubrick’s 2001: A Space Odyssey, or maybe a group of highly focused Franciscan monks or possibly the very sound of time itself. This, of course, makes complete sense, because the track is of Carl Sagan saying the word “billions” one time, but stretched out over the span of an entire hour.

Sagan, host (obviously) of the original, pre-Neil DeGrasse Tyson Cosmos series sounds downright avant-garde in the listenable(?) piece that results from the supposed stretch. 

John Kannenberg, a reader of the very cool, futurist io9 website apparently sent the recording to the site via Sound Cloud link recently. He asked simply, “This might be of interest?” io9 replies in their inevitable post that:

Yes. Yes, John, you beautiful genius. This is our wheelhouse.

As I write this, I’m sitting in my local library listening on headphones, and, oddly enough, it’s kind of great.

I’d like to join the folks at io9 in saying “Bravo, Mr. Kannenberg,” whoever you are. 

via io9

Posted by Jason Schafer | Discussion
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‘Welcome to Fear City’: The NYPD’s scary mid-1970s campaign to keep tourists OUT of NYC
09:56 am


New York City

Anyone raised on MAD Magazine in the 1970s and 1980s has taken in enough “New York City is a dingy, dangerous hellhole” gags to last a lifetime. The NYC Scouting blog described it very well a few years back:

“I really came to be enchanted by [New York City] through the pages of MAD, in which it was depicted as a place of extremes. The subway was a place to get killed. Times Square was a primal circus, while Fifth Ave was full of elitist ultra-rich snobs. Greenwich Village was home to wackos, hippies, and wannabe bohemians, while a jog in Central Park was less a workout and more a way of escaping the mugger chasing you.”

It’s interesting that “Scout” (a.k.a. Nick Carr) was so enchanted by this depiction; I suspect for most people the incessant talk of muggers and gridlock and rats and cockroaches was a horrible turnoff. A classic of the “I Hate NY” genre was the 1970 Neil Simon movie The Out-of-Towners, an annoying one-note cinematic experience in which Jack Lemmon and Sandy Dennis play visitors from “Twin Oaks, Ohio” who can’t travel the space of a block without 18 terrible things happening to them. Quite a few years later, around the time of Bernhard Goetz, there was the astonishing “Runaway” episode of The Facts of Life in which Tootie couldn’t spend a half-hour in midtown without having her coat and wallet stolen and becoming the target of a pimp’s malign scheme. Either way, the problems and dangers were overstated in 1970, 1975, 1983—it’s always overstated.

Some classic humor about the New York experience from MAD Magazine
If New York was suffering from a negative image, it’s possible they had nobody to blame for it but themselves, at least judging from this astounding PR campaign from 1975 that Gothamist spotted on Reddit. ““WELCOME TO FEAR CITY” trumpeted the cover, “A Survival Guide for Visitors to the City of New York.” Just in case you had missed the point, the designers put a big, scary skull on the cover.

At the time, New York was suffering a budget crisis so serious that the city actually was facing bankruptcy, which obviously affected the funds the city had available to pay, for instance, law enforcement personnel. I’m legally required to quote here the legendary headline the New York Daily News ran on October 30, 1975, after President Gerald Ford stated that he would veto any bailout funds for New York: “FORD TO CITY: DROP DEAD.” 

Already in the second paragraph of the pamphlet you can see some serious scaremongering going on, and it’s not difficult to see the actual purpose behind the pamphlet:

“Mayor Beame is going to discharge substantial numbers of firefighters and law enforcement officers of all kinds. By the time you read this, the number of public safety personnel available to protect residents and visitors may already have been still further reduced. Under those circumstances, the best advice we can give you is this: Until things change, stay away from New York City if you possibly can.”

Nice city you got here. Would be a shame if anything were to happen to it…..

This pamphlet was cooked up by the, ahem, “Council for Public Safety,” which was practically synonymous with the police, firefighters and other unions.
One can see in it a chilling reminder of the controversies in which the NY Police Department is currently embroiled, defiantly dissing the new liberal mayor, Bill de Blasio. After the shocking death of Staten Island resident Eric Garner at the hands of the police and the all-too-predictable non-indictment of its perpetrators, the excesses of the police have become a topic of discussion all over the nation, and the NYPD is right at the center of that debate. The police must always justify its existence (or the perks it receives for dangerous work), and will always, entirely paradoxically, point to the high crime that it is ostensibly supposed to prevent as a scary image of a world without the police. Just a few days ago the NYPD was engaging in a stealth “strike while getting paid” in which they refused to issue tickets and the number of arrests plummeted.

But the really scary thing is—New York City (or at least Manhattan) in 2015 is tremendously affluent—Millionaire Island—and the crime rate, however you want to measure it, is sharply down from the 1970s peak. But in the intransigence of the NYPD, who have dissed de Blasio (elected by 73% of NYC’s citizenry) in two consecutive NYPD funerals, you can see the implicit claim, over and over and over again, that without us, without the NYPD, the residents of New York face an urban jungle of chaos and crime. The 1970s may have seen an unfortunate high point in New York’s crime and squalor, but ultimately, there’s no such thing as a city too safe for the police not to make that claim.




Posted by Martin Schneider | Discussion
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Dr. Seuss and the 50 word ‘dare’ that inspired ‘Green Eggs and Ham’
08:04 am


Dr. Seuss

In terms of sales, Green Eggs and Ham, published in 1960, was the most successful book that Dr. Seuss ever published—it checks as the #4 best-selling children’s book of all time. Famously, the book was limited to a set of fifty words, Dr. Theodore Geisel (Seuss’ real name) having taken up a challenge thrown down by Random House publisher Bennett Cerf after The Cat in the Hat had used 225 words. The fifty words are: a, am, and, anywhere, are, be, boat, box, car, could, dark, do, eat, eggs, fox, goat, good, green, ham, here, house, I, if, in, let, like, may, me, mouse, not, on, or, rain, Sam, say, see, so, thank, that, the, them, there, they, train, tree, try, will, with, would, and you.

Recently the University of California has started a series of videos called “Fig. 1” intended to present the new research coming out of the University of California system. So far the videos have covered climate change, mountain biking, gold, and cancer.

One of the videos offers a fascinating look at the Dr. Seuss Collection, including drafts of the book Green Eggs and Ham. My favorite bit is the instruction to later colorists “White inside the hambone, always.” The video’s only shortcoming is that, at 84 seconds, it’s far too short! Can we have a version that lasts maybe 15 minutes? 


Posted by Martin Schneider | Discussion
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‘Bumpkins’: Appalachian artist creates unflinching hillbilly portraits
07:28 am



Hunter or Hipster, Male, 2012
Young artist Rebecca Morgan creates stirring, funny and often grotesque depictions of the “bumpkins” she grew up around in the Appalachian Mountain region of Pennsylvania. She sculpts, draws and paints with a wide range, and while her work may not always be flattering, her identification with and affection for her subjects is obvious, right down to her own bumpkiny self-portraits.

Her wealth of influences may account for such a meandering use of style:

[Morgan’s] characters touch on truths about poverty, addiction, and off-the-grid living, as well as idealizations of uncultured country life. Stylistically, Morgan embraces hyper-detailed naturalism, influenced by Dutch painters such as Memling, Brueghel, and Van Eyck, as well as absurd, repulsive caricature suggestive of underground cartoonists like R. Crumb.

Morgan now spends much of her time in New York City—she’s repped by the Asya Geisberg Gallery on 23rd Street. She says she feels the pull of the country when she’s in the metropolis, but misses the culture of the city when she’s back home—something I’d argue most rural transplants can relate to, to one degree or another. While I certainly sympathize, I couldn’t be more pleased to see another person playing the “hunter or hipster?” guessing game that proves so confounding these days, as portrayed in the portrait above.


Mountain Man, 2014
More after the jump…

Posted by Amber Frost | Discussion
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Brazilian woman escapes death as truck crashes through wall
05:46 am


near death escape

A receptionist at a real estate company in Toledo, Brazil, narrowly escaped death after a pick-up truck crashed through an office wall. The whole incident was captured on the company’s CCTV and the footage shows the woman appearing nervous as if responding to something she has heard outside of the building.
Seconds later, as the woman attempts to stand up, a vehicle plows through the wall pushing her and her desk across the room under a tide of crumbling wall.
The crash was also taped from another angle and shows other employees attempting to escape the truck before it quickly comes to a halt.

It was one hell of a crash and the woman was very, very lucky to come out it alive.

H/T Arbroath

Posted by Paul Gallagher | Discussion
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The Residents demolish ‘We Are the World’
05:37 am


The Residents
We Are the World

Just who are the world, anyway?

In October 1997, the Residents celebrated their 25th anniversary with a series of shows at San Francisco’s Fillmore. Friends, it was my lucky lot in life to attend one of these concerts. (I believe it was Richard’s even luckier lot to attend one of the 13th anniversary shows, where they were joined by the late, great guitarist Snakefinger.) There are many memories I treasure from that magical evening, but the Residents’ reading of “We Are the World” will always have a special place in my heart. I have never heard the song the same way since.

The centerpiece of the Fillmore concerts was “Disfigured Night,” a/k/a “The Saga of Silly Billy,” a 30-minute piece of music which tells the story of a telepathic deaf mute who befriends a one-legged chimp. The simian’s former human companion, a one-legged girl, appears to Silly Billy in a vision, and he and the chimp set out to find her.

In Billy’s vision, the girl sings a siren-like melody; it haunts the boy throughout his quest. At the climax of “Disfigured Night,” after Billy undergoes a miraculous transformation, he stands on his bed and belts the song. Yep, you guessed it: it’s “We Are the World.” 

Here’s the end of “Disfigured Night” as it was performed in Köln, Germany in August 1997. As you’ll see, the audience can barely contain its excitement. This footage comes from the long out-of-print Disfigured Night DVD.

Later, readers—I have to heed a certain call, if you know what I mean. 

Posted by Oliver Hall | Discussion
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Classic metal album covers get retro makeovers
01:21 pm


album covers

Megadeth, Rust In Peace
Brazilian designer Rafael Melandi is the Creative Director at the São Paulo agency Opera Communications, but this wonderful project of his has very little of the operatic to it, unless you count histrionic singing: he’s redesigned classic heavy metal LP covers in the high-modern style associated with mid-century jazz album art. Melandi’s created a portfolio of this work, called “Metazz,” on his Behance page, which shows that this is quite out of character in the context of his usual professional work. Clearly this was a labor of love. I definitely love it.
Black Sabbath, Paranoid
Metallica, Master Of Puppets
Anthrax, Among The Living
Sepultura, Arise
Motörhead, Ace of Spades
Slayer, Reign In Blood
Pantera, Vulgar Display of Power
Iron Maiden, Powerslave
Judas Priest, British Steel
via Metalsucks

Previously on Dangerous Minds
Metal albums with googly eyes
Iconic heavy metal album covers turned into coloring book for kids
A 7-year-old’s drawings of classic rap albums

Posted by Ron Kretsch | Discussion
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