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CONTAMINATE! Dalek grown in a petri dish
07.03.2013
12:20 pm
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Microbiologist “Who-ligan” grew this Dalek out of E. coli bacteria inside a petri dish because he/she admits they suck at art but “I’ve got science!”

Works for me.

Via Neatorama

Posted by Tara McGinley
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07.03.2013
12:20 pm
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Sham Rock: Protex’s earnest Northern Irish power pop punk
07.03.2013
11:25 am
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Protex formed in 1977 after the future band-members witnessed The Clash’s first show in Belfast. They originally called themselves “Protex Blue,” after The Clash song title. Perhaps to avoid comparisons with the very different band (or perhaps because they realized that song was about condoms?), they shortened it to “Protex” a little later.

Protex were one of those bands that just sort of hovered between obscurity and real commercial success, possibly because labels had no idea what to do with them.  Dirtier, sexier punk like The Undertones had already emerged in Northern Ireland, and while Protex’s live shows were as had shambolic as any punk band’s, there was a pop sensibility to their songs that was much closer to The Nerves than to The Clash.

After a few successful singles on the Good Vibrations label (which also boasted The Undertones), they were reissued on Rough Trade Records to meet demand, and eventually signed to Polydor in 1979. From there Protex recorded an album, “Strange Obsessions,” that was shelved until a 2010 pressing on Sing Sing Records, well after they disbanded in 1981. Protex was among the front-runners of the Northern Irish punk sound, and I strongly suggest you give “Strange Obsessions” a listen. They were a really great, unique band, and their album was almost lost to history!

Recently the group reformed (with some new members). Last month, they played two gigs in Japan.

Below, the studio version of “Don’t Ring Me Up.” More sweetheart than snot, it could be an Everly Brothers tune:
 

 
A live performance of “Don’t Ring Me Up” in New York’s Hurrah nightclub in 1980:
 

Posted by Amber Frost
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07.03.2013
11:25 am
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Barbie doll created with average US woman’s measurements is repulsive hag
07.03.2013
10:17 am
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Barbie
I, for one, am baffled that anyone has sex with women at all.

Just kidding! She’s totally cute!

Artist Nickolay Lamm, who previously created “clean-faced” Barbies intended to look makeup-free, has gotton even more ambitious with his most recent conceptual Barbie project. Using the Center for Disease Control & Prevention’s measurements of an average 19-year-old woman, he has created a Barbie shaped like an actual person. Declaring, “we should at least be open to the possibility that Barbie may negatively influence young girls,” Lamm taps into a can of worms that’s been debated in parenting and feminist circles forever—when children use play to learn, is there really such thing as “just a doll?”

On some level, hyper-realistic dolls are a bit silly anyways, since anyone who’s ever been around kids will admit you can draw a smiley face on a jar of pickles and they’ll play with it like a doll. In many parts of the world, dolls don’t attempt the detail of Barbie, and people don’t have to think about dolls’ “bodies.” On the other hand, when a doll is produced with such an uncanny attention to detail, especially when it’s a hyper-stylized depiction of the sort of bodies ubiquitously heralded as “hot,” (and oh so rarely achieved via nature alone) you have to wonder if kids are internalizing the Barbie “body” as something attainable.

Regardless, it’s an interesting concept, and it says something about how deeply ingrained Barbie has become as an American icon that a realistic body makeover looks jarring and surreal.
 
Barbies
Barbie’s got back.


 
Via Bust

Posted by Amber Frost
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07.03.2013
10:17 am
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Color me blood red: Supermarket chain sells gruesome horror movie coloring-book to kids
07.03.2013
10:07 am
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A horror movie coloring-book aimed at “good colourer-inners (as well as beginners)” has been withdrawn from the website of British supermarket chain Tesco. The company, which is called “Fresh and Easy” in America, is “the second-largest retailer, measured by profits, in the world.”

The book, Colour Me Good: Arrggghhhh!!, promises “really scary stuff” and “more blood than you can shake a dagger at,” and depicts scenes from such classic horror films as Psycho, The Shining, A Nightmare on Elm Street, A Clockwork Orange and Carrie.

Tesco was apparently selling Colour Me Good: Arrggghhhh!! as suitable for children ages five-to-eight, which led to criticism and the book’s subsequent withdrawal. Tesco claimed the book had been placed on its website by a third party retailer. A spokesperson for the company said:

“We have very clear guidelines for third-party sellers who list items on our website, and are sorry that on this occasion they weren’t followed.

“We will be speaking with the seller to remind them of the importance of selecting the right category when listing products with us.”

The book’s publisher, Mel Elliott of I Love Mel told the Daily Telegraph:

“Firstly, and most importantly, my products are not aimed at kids. They are a contemporary, pop-culture inspired range that are aimed at playful grown-ups.

“I was unaware that Tesco were a stockist as a separate distribution company deal with wholesale of my products.

“The front cover of ‘Colour Me Good Arrggghhhh!!’ features a drawing from the horror movie, ‘Psycho’ in which a woman is stabbed to death in the shower. I believe that this one image is a fairly large clue that this is not a book aimed at children. However, it does state on Tesco’s website that my products are aimed at five to eight year olds, which is an error on their part.”

The product has now been removed from Tesco’s website.

Colour Me Good: Arrggghhhh!! is still available from I Love Mel (where you can view all of the coloring-in pages), or from Amazon.
 
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Via ‘Daily Telegraph’ and ‘I Love Mel
 
More of ‘Arrggghhhh! Colour Me Good,’ after the jump…

READ ON
Posted by Paul Gallagher
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07.03.2013
10:07 am
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An attraction to darkness: A revealing interview with Jean Genet, 1981
07.02.2013
09:29 pm
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Jean Genet in conversation with Antoine Bourseiller, summer 1981.

“I don’t why I shouldn’t talk about myself. I’m the person who knows the most about myself. Right?”

And so we are led to believe, as novelist and playwright Jean Genet begins this revealing interview, before going on to describe his attraction to darkness, “even to the point of going to jail.” He may have stolen to eat, but something intuitively drew the young Genet towards the darkness of prison.

Over the course of the interview, Genet explains how this attraction shaped him, and his imprisonment at the Mettray Penal Colony at the age of fifteen, was instrumental in making him a writer.

This is gold for those with an interest in Jean Genet, his life and writing.

Recorded in French, with English subtitles available under the “CC” Closed Caption icon.
 

Posted by Paul Gallagher
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07.02.2013
09:29 pm
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Female Trouble! Divine’s Dawn Davenport spotted shopping at Wal-Mart
07.02.2013
06:58 pm
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It’s uncanny! And reminiscent of the scenes between Dawn Davenport (Divine) and Taffy (Mink Stole) in Female Trouble.

Thanks to I Am Divine, photo by Benjamin Lee Thomas.

Posted by Niall O'Conghaile
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07.02.2013
06:58 pm
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‘Between the Teeth’: David Byrne Live, 1992
07.02.2013
06:46 pm
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There’s a book to be written about musicians who started their careers by playing the ukulele. The ten-year-old Leonard Cohen taught himself to play the ukulele long before he learned to play the guitar. The teenage John Lennon was taught by his mother Julia how to play uke before Paul McCartney helped him hold down a chord. Fellow Beatle George Harrison was a life-long enthusiast, and kept a car boot full of spare ukes to give to fellow fans. Joni Mitchell wrote all of her early songs on a uke, long before she could afford to buy a guitar. Bill Drummond of The KLF once said he was so in love with his ukulele he took it to bed. While David Byrne, who was proficient as a child on harmonica, accordion and guitar, started his show business career busking with a ukulele around New York, before forming Talking Heads with Chris Frantz and Tina Weymouth.

It is also worth noting that these talented ukulele-players have achieved great success in a variety of other disciplines—writing, painting, film-making, and art—with David Byrne arguably being the most creatively diverse of the bunch.

Here the inspirational Mr. Byrne performs a cracking set from his Uh Oh tour, on Halloween, 1992. Recorded at The Count Basie Theater in Red Bank, New Jersey, this excellent concert was released long, long ago on VHS as Between the Teeth, which leads to my only question, why no DVD release?

Track Listing

01. “Well”
02. “(Nothing But) Flowers”
03. “Girls On My Mind”
04. “Mr. Jones”
05. “Something Ain’t Right”
06. “Life During Wartime”
07. “Women Vs. Men”
08. “Hanging Upside Down”
09. “Lie To Me”
10. “She’s Mad”
11. “Blind”
12. “Make Believe Mambo”
13. “And She Was”
14. “Buck Naked”
15. “Road To Nowhere”

Enjoy!
 

Posted by Paul Gallagher
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07.02.2013
06:46 pm
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Dangerous Finds: Lou Reed defends ‘Yeezus’; Testicles have taste receptors; ‘Snowden’s Run’ poster
07.02.2013
06:23 pm
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Listen to Bedroom Cassette Masters 1980-89: “Sounds like vintage electronica, looks like vintage electronica…” - Nerdcore

The rock ’n’ roll casualty who became a war hero - New York Times

Your testicles have taste receptors - Business Insider

Lou Reed defends Kanye West’s Yeezus - The Talkhouse

German government refuses asylum for Snowden - Spiegel.de

Michael Jordan tried to take my virginity ... Says former MTV VJ Kennedy - TMZ

A police officer suspected in the brutal gang-rape of a young woman in Ukraine was detained Tuesday after protesters stormed and burned a police station in southern Ukraine in anger over the authorities’ reluctance to place him in custody - ABC News

The Proof of Heaven author has now been thoroughly debunked by science - The Atlantic Wire

Paralyzed rats relearn to pee: Bladder control restored for the first time in animals with stark spinal cord damage - Science News

Festival girl falls into porta potty trying to throw up - Be The Rave

Huge document dump shows how Church protected abusers - Salon

Amputee duck walks for the first time with a new 3D-printed foot - Laughing Squid

Southern states are pushing themselves deeper into poverty by voting Republican - Politicus USA

Based on the classic movie poster of Logan’s Run, here’s Snowden’s Run - Boing Boing

As elephant poaching reaches an all-time high, researchers have discovered a way to single out black-market ivory by using Cold War-era radiation - Popular Mechanics

Vincent Price, on wine - Audio link

The guitar Bob Dylan played when he “went electric” at Newport Folk Festival in 1965 is to be sold at auction - NME

Ponce De Leon Never Searched for the Fountain of Youth: How did this myth about the Spanish explorer even get its start? - Smithsonian


Below, foam on a street in Japan after 40 litres of liquid soap was poured down sink:

Posted by Tara McGinley
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07.02.2013
06:23 pm
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Hoochie Coochie: Smuggle your booze with fake tampons
07.02.2013
04:00 pm
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I’m not entirely sure what the point of this is, but I guess you should be happy that each booze tube equals a solid shot.

I dunno. I’ll stop here.

Via Boing Boing

Posted by Tara McGinley
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07.02.2013
04:00 pm
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Tubercular Bells: J.G. Thirlwell’s Manorexia scrapes the foetus off a chamber orchestra
07.02.2013
03:52 pm
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J.G. Thirlwell’s a man with a lot on his plate, composing soundtrack music for Adult Swim’s latest season of The Venture Brothers and producing Zola Jesus. He’s also performing with his experimental classical ensemble, Manorexia.

To my ears, 2011’s brilliant Manorexia release, Dinoflagellate Blooms is one of the best things Thirlwell has put out under any of the various pseudonyms he’s worked under in his long career. I’m a huge aficionado of 5.1 surround mixes and Dinoflagellate Blooms (which is only available from Thirlwell’s website) is one of the most striking uses of the format I can name. Most often 5.1 mixes are re-mixed versions of classic rock albums tarted up for six speakers, but Dinoflagellate Blooms is one of the rare albums that was mixed especially for the format.

Tractor Beam caught up with Thirlwell after Manorexia’s June 23rd live performance at the River to River festival in New York:

Tractor Beam: During the Manorexia performance, you are at the back of the stage working from a laptop. As Tom Waits might ask – what are you building back there?

J.G. Thirlwell: Most of my compositions are on the page (i.e. the score) and I re-voice them for the instrumentation. The pieces have a bedrock of sounds from the laptop and some contain one or two events (e.g. samples). On two of the pieces, we are using the laptop as a keyboard module (e.g. an organ sound), or a bass. On one piece I am using a Max MSP Patch and I have signals from all four strings running into the computer; into four different channels. I am processing the strings live (i.e. adding plug-ins, delays, filters, etc…) as well as triggering samples and changing (sound) levels.

Tractor Beam: Experimental music – as an identifier – can leave me baffled and frustrated. What is Manorexia? 

J.G. Thirlwell: Manorexia as a recording project is something unto its own and the pieces take on a different but parallel life when performed by the chamber ensemble. One of the pieces we perform, “Anabiosis,” started life as a commission for Bang On A Can; so it was voiced for clarinet, cello, contrabass, percussion, piano and guitar. A symphonic version ended up on the last Manorexia album, which was then re-voiced again for our live performances. Another one started life as a Foetus piece. There are elements are probably informed by contemporary classical music and soundtrack music.

Gravitation Generator: JG Thirlwell Talks Manorexia, John Peel and Analogue Synths (Tractor Beam)

Below, Thirlwell’s Manorexia ensemble perform “Tubercular Bells” and “Anabiosis” live at Roadburn on April 13, 2012:
 

Posted by Richard Metzger
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07.02.2013
03:52 pm
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