Saturday, July 31, 2004

Incredible fractal graphic wallpaper.

[via Pontus]

The next Lara Croft? Jade from Beyond Good and Evil -- how I spend my evening...

[via GamersMark]

Beyond a Waste of Time

Well I've wasted the entire evening playing a new game, Beyond Good and Evil. A great third person adventure game, BG&E is a "sleeper" -- a top notch game that for some reason has not gotten the cred it deserves. Super graphics, a hot protagonist, good plot, puzzles, action -- its got everything but gore.

Will post some stuff tomorrow...

Friday, July 30, 2004

Typo Generator -- a site that converts text into an artsy-fartsy art poster. Pretty cool, just type in some text and the site creates a graphic design based on the text.

[via Neurastenia]

Two for one dog blog Friday. Dakota and Cocoa gettin jiggy with it.

Tuesday, July 27, 2004

Spam Poetry

industriously intelligible
esteem elderly
evidently ablest

[what is Spam Poetry?]

Monday, July 26, 2004

Nectar of the gods, Desert Juniper GinPosted by Hello

Desert Juniper Gin

I developed a taste for gin and tonics in college. They were great for those hot and humid Texas summers. When the heat hit Oregon this summer we broke out the gin and tonics once again. It was over 100 degrees last weekend.

In a gin inspired stupor I was compelled to dedicate an entry to my favorite gin, Desert Juniper Gin. Still buzzed after dinner (mesquite smoked pork loin roast, arugula salad with shaved parmigiano reggiano, french bread) I got on the web and started my research. I had no idea booze reviews could be so pissy.

After learning the obligatory stuff like, "gin was invented in Holland in [either] the 1500's or the 1600's. I quickly became a scourge of... oops, "IT" quickly became the scourge of the working classes and was called "gin madness" by the nascent nanny state of the time. Anyway...

This stuff is really good. It is micro distilled in small batches (I think that was redundant). During distillation, they throw out the beginning of the batch and the end of the batch, keeping the smooth middle part. The high desert in Oregon, where the distillery is located, has lots of naturally growing juniper. The result is a richly aromatic juniper aroma combined with a surprisingly smooth taste -- perfect for really strong gin based drinks. And you can buy it online!

Juniper berrys also make a great ingredient in poultry marinades.

Picking juniper berries -- is he having too much fun, or what?
[via Las Vegas Review JournalPosted by Hello

Sunday, July 25, 2004

Lead singer, songwriter Chloe Matheou.
[via Riddick White records]

Cinematic "Psycho" allusion -- Chloe, lead singer of Scream and Scream Again victim of her own StalkerPosted by Hello

Scream and Scream Again

I was cruising the NAM:LIVE blog last night. The latest post by Bronxxx is a Drive-By of a girl named Chloe Simone Matheou. She’s the lead singer and guitarist for the band Scream and Scream Again. (And married to Carl Porcaro, lead guitar of the band.)

The band has a post-punk style reminiscent of the Lunachicks that really rocks. They don’t have any CDs burned, but there are some good mp3 tunes worthy of download and enjoyment. Their rock/punk sound is matched by lyrics that are funny, ironic and snarky.

"Money, Movie, Me" features a trance-like guitar intro and then moves into vocals reminiscent of Patty Smith and a rollicking nihilistic anthem on desire, privilege and the eternal dream of something for nothing. Listen here. There's another version here.

"Someone should put me in a movie
Someone should give me some money
Someone should do all things for me
Just for being me

Everyone wants to be famous
I would rather just take the cash"

Keep Your Mouth Shut (xerox girls version) reminds me of Suicidal Tendencies with a female Mike Muir. Chloe sings about her "best friend" who she threatens with revelation of a litany of sins from poor fashion sense to genital warts. Given the this casual hatred, one can only imagine what the best friend's supposed to keep her mouth shut about. Chloe's British accent sounds great in this cut. Listen here.

Finally, we have a lo-fi home recording, "Stalker". This one's a more traditional hard rocker about a woman stalker who's obsessed about a man with "blue eyes, black hair". Listen here.

How knows, they could be the next X?

UPDATE: Welcome visitors from the Scream and Scream Again web site.

Spam Poetry

elixir morning child

[what is Spam Poetry?]

Flower girl from the downtown Portland farmers market. Posted by Hello

Friday, July 23, 2004

Spam Poetry

Ever since someone slipped my email address to a spammer, I've been getting multiple porn spams daily. Some of them contain subject lines with strange combinations of words – apparently computer generated to fool spam filters.

Some of these subject lines are strangely poetic…

darkness intolerable
repayment complete

Cocoa on the deck Posted by Hello

Dog blogging Friday -- Dakota Posted by Hello

Thursday, July 22, 2004

Bouffe Chinoise -- an incredible collection of freaky photos, Flash and video clips. NSFW [via #!/usr/bin/girl Posted by Hello

Went to San Mateo this week. Flew into SFOPosted by Hello

SFO hotel shuttle pickup zone. Posted by Hello

Wednesday, July 21, 2004

NAM:LIVE! -- Critic's Darling, Media Whore (NSFW)

NAM:LIVE! is not just an album, its part of a multi faceted creative effort known as the Church of Nam that spans images, the printed word, music and performance art. With a goal of world (media) domination, the creator of NAM:LIVE!, Bronxx and his crew, have chosen a provocative metaphor for their art – religion.

According to Bronxxx, the man behind NAM:LIVE!, "Once upon a time, an artist's work was commissioned directly by the fans, known then as patrons. Since those glory days, corporations have positioned themselves as the middle person between the artist and the audience, creating a monopoly that serves to homogenize artistic output and limit what the audience is allowed to see and here."

Homogenized artistic output is what I think about when I hear a group like Train; euphonic, vaguely familiar and about as memorable as Wonder Bread. NAM:LIVE's sound, style and method can't be pigeon holed. Its a rich gumbo of rock, rap, R&B, soul and funk - and very tasty indeed.

Take a listen, here and here.

One of my favorites songs, Born to Rock, is an autobiographical song about Bronxxx experiences with a record label. He describes the absurd crazyness of the commercial music business; the fact that they don't really know what they're doing (as far as picking great talent) and their reliance on copying styles and genres in a misguided effort to make "safe" picks - which just results in bland boring heard-something-just-like-it crap. Its no wonder music sales are down.

Production values on the album are good. This is an electronic album, there is little air or soundstage in the recording. Dynamic range, frequency range and EQ sound great.

Buy NAM:LIVE! here.

[via: Fleshbot]

UPDATE: Welcome NAM:LIVE Blog visitors.

If My Life Were A Movie

My life is rated NC-17.
What is your life rated?

Hat tip: Nightwalker

Monday, July 19, 2004

Music Reviews That Don't Suck

If the best source for good music is word of mouth, then why is it that most published music reviews suck? Many reviews are masturbatory exercises where critics expound on how this reminds them of that, or pontificate on imagined influences and precedents of the music at hand. Nothing is provided about whether the music is actually any good or not, nor why – besides maybe some stars or other rating scheme. I blame this all on postmodern art theory; an insiders dialog in a language that only other insiders understand. For example:

“This, the sophomore effort for Steaming Manhole Covers, has a dark backbeat rhythm reminiscent of Death Cab for Cutie. Smith’s vocal stylings, obviously derived from Blue Airline Blanket’s feverish Todd Merryweather, perfectly captures the angst and passion of this album.” What? Death Cab for Cutie has a dark backbeat? Only one? And who the hell are Blue Airline Blanket? Feverish? This stuff gets boring real quick.

Of course, music is a very personal thing. What people like varies widely. It’s a rare thing when I can find a reviewer whose taste I share. And when that match reveals itself, I latch on. Even when it comes to sharing music recommendations with friends, occasions where tastes converge rather than collide is rare.

Its fun too, to figure out the meaning behind any kind of creative effort (it’s not always just about sex and drugs). Not necessarily the most insightful, your humble blogger checks out other reviews for perspective more monumental than my own.

But the most important part of a review is whether the album in question is any good or not. Unambiguous opinions (with explanations) are essential. Even if you hate the stuff I like, at least you’ll know what not to buy.

How a recording actually sounds is also very important to me, so I include an assessment of the sonic qualities of a recording. For reference, at home music is reviewed on a Naim CD2 CD player and Naim amp and pre amp. Speakers are Celestion. Naim interconnect and speaker cables are used throughout. On the road I use a Sony portable CD player and an iRiver IFP-390P mp3 player with Sennheiser M500 earbuds and Etymotic ER6 earphones. The Etymotic earphones are a must for air travel. This inside the ear canal earphone provides the best isolation from loud ambient noises.

Friday, July 16, 2004

Dakota, house guest Posted by Hello

Thursday, July 15, 2004

Dog blog (almost) Friday -- Cocoa, our family Pit Bull Posted by Hello

Wednesday, July 14, 2004

Raymi, cult figure. Hat tip:  Posted by Hello

A classic Raymi self portrait Posted by Hello

Tuesday, July 13, 2004

The Minx herself Posted by Hello

Monday, July 12, 2004

Raymi the Minx -- Web Goddess

The self professed blogfather (of soul?), Raymi the Minx is a conundrum. She’s wicked funny when she’s not pissed off or seriously depressed. Her writing can be an exercise in abstract expressionism or achingly beautiful.

Raymi, whose real name is Lauren, is an “old soul” – her blog does not seem written by a 21 year old woman, except when she comes across as a twelve year old. I did say conundrum, right? She’s authentic and yet you’re always guessing if everything is for real. She assures her readers it is very real.

She’s been blogging since 1999 and is a highly valued blog. I've been hitting her blog since about 2000. She’s quite a writer and a regular contributor to Rocketpack. My favorite story is Raymi-Hump Monster a delightful story of young innocence, passion and dolls. There is a great story here about how to lose weight. (She had me change out a photo of her because she didn't think she looked skinny enough.)

It won’t take too much exploring of Raymi’s world to discover two things; she’s a beautiful young woman and she likes to take pictures in various stages of undress.

Go visit Raymi’s world.

Saturday, July 10, 2004

the emo life -- Hat tip: Posted by Hello


Are you emo? Do you know someone who is? Can you recognize the emo around you?

Learn everything you need to know to be today's kind of cool right here.

UPDATE: It seems that the last link above has exceeded their bandwidth. The link goes to a great low budget movie about emo that's a real hoot. Be sure to check back later after their bandwidth meter gets reset.

Porn, Bad Taste and Pop Subculture (NSFW)

These are words to live by. Created by a Mexico City graphic artist in Flash, Pornocha is an homage to women: sweet, sexy and tawdry.

Made up of photos, illustrations (digital and analog), and Flash animations, Pornocha explores themes of carnal lust, S&M, and violence. This is a hobby project site for the artist(s?) who appear to have day jobs as graphic artists.

Very creative stuff (if a bit sexually obsessed).


Prince's latest... Posted by Hello

Hips and Lips, Chips and Whips

Prince's latest offering, Musicology seems to be an album that people either love or hate. Older Prince fans looking for more of the 80's stuff they loved(Little Red Corvette, 1999, Purple Rain) might be disappointed. Time has not stood still for Prince, and nor have his musical sensibilities.

Musicology is a nice mix of soul, funk and unique amalgams of musical styles. The album is varied with each song standing on its own, yet seemingly belonging to the whole. Entertaining lyrics, good orchestration and high production values create a work that is both fun and a pleasurable listen.

Gretchen Wilson Posted by Hello

The ideal Redneck Woman? Posted by Hello

Gretchen Wilson Posted by Hello

Gretchen Wilson -- The Anti-Shania

Gretchen Wilson is the latest country phenom. This, her debut album, has been number one for 8 weeks. Her outstanding debut success is mostly due to the novelty appeal of her songs, "Redneck Woman" and "Here for the Party"-- both great irreverent high-energy songs.

Her music has an unvarnished authentic feel. The best songs on the CD are the one's she's written herself. These are the rocking, irreverent songs. There are also some covers of ballads and other stuff. I'm not a big country fan, with probably less than 10 CDs to my credit (or lack there of). I like this one because of its immediacy and unvarnished truth. Definitely not the slick production you would get from Shania or Faith. That's a good thing.

Born in '73 of a 16 year old mother, Gretchen grew up among the corn fields and hog farms of Pocahontas, Illinois. Living in trailer homes and working at bars since she was 14, Gretchen's paid her dues. She moved to Nashville in '96 working a bar and singing in a cover band before getting hooked into the local singer/songwriter scene.

Buy it.

Cascade foothills Posted by Hello

Mt Hood  Posted by Hello

O'Hare Terminal C -- my favorite airport, architecturally. Posted by Hello