Friday, June 19, 2009

Album of the day: Flying Burrito Brothers - The Gilded Palace of Sin

Alex Edkins recommended this to me (of Metz), so I thought it might be good. I didn't realize it would change / blow my mind.

The Flying Burrito Brothers was an early country rock band, best known for its influential debut album, 1969's The Gilded Palace of Sin. Although the group is most often mentioned in connection with country rock legends Gram Parsons and Chris Hillman, the group underwent many personnel changes.

Here they are again (embedding disabled) with Emmylou Harris (apparently the first concert ever recorded ;)

Download album here.

Metz play tonight:

19 Jun 2009 20:00
Silver Dollar...NEXT Festival w/ These are Powers Toronto, Ontario

Through & through & through

New video for Joel Plaskett, apparently shot around Peggy's Cove, NS, and in a golf course near Halifax. Great song.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Iran, so far, in my nutshell.



This guy below is, hmmm,.... uhhh... self promoting, but, quickly gives some info in video form for quick digestion.


"The powerful Revolutionary Guard said it had taken action against “deviant news sites” financed by American and Canadian companies. "


Irregularities in Ahmadinejad camp photo releases.

ummm... I assume this happens all the time everywhere. Is that a safe assumption? I wish not, but I assume so. Thoughts?

BoingBoing has more (a 'cyberguide').

An example of the rigged internet: (see poll, just in case you had doubts that this is 'wide-spread').



"Before leaving at about 4 a.m., the police took away memory cards and computer software material, Akbar said, adding that dozens of students were arrested.

One of Mousavi's websites said a student protester was killed early Monday during clashes with plainclothes hardliners in Shiraz, southern Iran. But there was no independent confirmation of the report. There also have been unconfirmed reports of unrest breaking out in other cities across Iran."

The other side, on CBC tv, for those that don't have tv. (there are commercials here as well, with no embedding option.)


More (pretty in-depth) here:

A very detailed look at the previous Iranian presidential election by Nate Silver at, who is not at all convinced by the rural/urban divide story we’ve heard in recent days to explain Mr. Ahmadinejad’s reported election victory. Here’s how he starts ripping that notion apart:

You have probably heard it asserted that Mahmoud Ahmadinejad principal strength is in rural areas, whereas Mir-Hossein Mousavi did relatively better in Iran’s cities. However, it is not clear that this is true. Moreover, in 2005, it is demonstrably false. On the contrary, Ahmadinejad did much better in urban areas in that election.

Mr. Silver also adds that if Mr. Moussavi “only” had strong support in the country’s urban areas, he would have been in good shape: “Although Iran is a fairly large country, most of its population — about 68 percent — lives in cities.”

One final good article; off to some sort of sleep: If he did it.

Ahmadinejad appeared to pick up most of the vote from Mehdi Karroubi, who is routinely described as the most liberal of the candidates. This is in spite of the fact that Karroubi himself was on the ballot this year; he appeared to retain only about 5 percent of his own vote.

Renard already detected this pattern, so I am not really telling you anything new. But it seems to me to be the key to explaining the Iranian election -- whether it was legitimate or whether it was rigged.

I'd love to hear your thoughts on this as well as any info I've missed.

Band of the Day: Japandroids

Duo from Vancouver. Heavy Punky Garage Rock.

Listen here: (although the myspace sound quality won't help... download full album below)

Download full (punky-heavy-ish) album here

Metacritic 86 on metacritic (with a 9.0 from actual users!)

Website: (listen to song here) with a nice video of a photo shoot plan done about two months ago in Toronto's Chinatown:

This is terminally catchy music played with punk's enthusiasm and velocity, and maybe it's the fact that there's only two dudes in this band that makes you feel like joining in to bash along.

Sounds like the heavier Starkicker we've all been waiting for.

They play in Toronto on the 16th of July at the El Mocambo, sold out. The concert will be insane.

Also, long-listed for the Polaris.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Perimeter Institute: Two things on my mind.


Tickets go on sale September 1st. They're celebrating 10 years since the idea of the institute.

Events will take place from October 15 to 25, 2009, commemorating the 10th anniversary of Perimeter Institute’s creation, contributing to Canada's National Science and Technology Week activities, and providing one of the world’s most interesting on-site and online destinations during this International Year of Astronomy.

More info here:


Just received this book as a (fantastic) gift. A first hand account of the creation of the Perimeter Institute from the founding executive director(!), who has subsequently left (in 2007). Experience all the "turf wars and ego clashes"! Science book? I don't think so (haven't read it yet.. ), but there's an index in the back!

Free to borrow in early July.

Jose Canseco

Ok, everyone's chiming in on him, and I'd leave it alone, but this is just too much:

NEW YORK -- Jose Canseco plans to file a class-action lawsuit against Major League Baseball and the players' association, saying he's been ostracized for going public with tales of steroids use in the sport....

...Canseco said the basis of the suit would be "lost wages -- in some cases, defamation of character."

"Because I used steroids and I came out with a book, I was kicked out of the game, but I have not been inducted into the Hall of Fame," Canseco said in a telephone interview.

"A lot of these players have not been inducted into the Hall of Fame: Mark McGwire and so forth. They're losing salaries, because obviously when you're inducted into the Hall of Fame, you get asked to do certain, you know, appearances and shows and so forth, which incorporates income. So there is a major income loss.

"Not even that, baseball blackballs you from their family, meaning you can't have a future proper reference from them, a job, no managerial jobs, no coaching jobs, nothing. They completely sever you."


Here's a great article from Deadspin on Canseco; a fantastic read.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Album of the day: Hayden - The Place Where We Lived

Dave Morris review:


"Indeed, on much of the record, Hayden almost sounds like Tom Petty singing with his Travelling Wilburys, a radical departure for a musician known as a hermit recording artist."


"I guess the banjo infused “Let’s Break Up” is a nice little tune that could be a soundtrack to some CBC small town drama show that will get cancelled in about 4 months."


Download and listen: Hayden - Let's break-up

BTW, last year's Hayden release "In Field and Town" is really worth listening to as a Hayden fan... a departure from traditional Hayden... but not too much! The Place Where We Lived isn't as country/folk as advertised... but the Cuff the Duke backing band music is a delight and definitely comes through.

No tour dates announced (for NXNE or otherwise) for Hayden or Cuff the Duke.

Read a book tonight.



Unfair refs

From Deadspin:

An academic study concludes that NBA zebras "tend to favor home teams, teams trailing in a game and teams trailing in a playoff series." Also, the team getting 10 points when Tim Donaghy is involved.

Good article.

...But the same study found that NBA referees tend to favor home teams, teams trailing in a game and teams trailing in a playoff series...

So, NBA refs act like a Nintendo Wii. Fair enough.

More Milwaukee...

(Not my picture)

On our way back to Toronto, Jer and I saw a quadruple rainbow. Yeah, a quadruple rainbow... just looking into the physics of it...

Of course, it could have been a dream.. I don't quite remember for sure... 22 hours in a car over a weekend will do that to you.

Bike Rack.

Anna takes all credit for this one.

I really like how it works... using gravity and weight distribution. Very harmonious.

The inside bowl could also be used for a helmet and gloves...

Monday, June 15, 2009

Polaris 2009 Long list

From the mailing list...

Without further delay, here is the 40-strong 2009 Polaris Music Prize Long List.

Arkells - Jackson Square
Jill Barber - Chances
Beast - Beast
Bell Orchestre - As Seen Through Windows
Bison B.C. - Quiet Earth
Bruce Peninsula - A Mountain Is A Mouth
Cœur De Pirate - Cœur De Pirate
Leonard Cohen - Live In London
D-Sisive - Let The Children Die
Elephant Stone - The Seven Seas (Demonoid account req.)
Elliott Brood - Mountain Meadows
Fucked Up - The Chemistry Of Common Life
Great Lake Swimmers - Lost Channels (Popups and wait 1.5 min)
Handsome Furs - Face Control
Tim Hecker - An Imaginary Country
Hey Rosetta! - Into Your Lungs
Japandroids - Post-Nothing (Demonoid account req.)
Junior Boys - Begone Dull Care
K'NAAN - Troubadour
La patère rose - La patère rose

Land Of Talk - Some Are Lakes
Lhasa - Lhasa
Malajube - Labyrinthes
Metric - Fantasies
One Hundred Dollars - Forest Of Tears
Pink Mountaintops - Outside Love
Joel Plaskett - Three
Snailhouse - Lies On The Prize
Charles Spearin - The Happiness Project (Demonoid account req.)
Rae Spoon - superioryouareinferior
The Stills - Oceans Will Rise
Think About Life - Family (Popups and wait 1.5 min)
Timber Timbre - Timber Timbre
Chad VanGaalen - Soft Airplane
Martha Wainwright - I Know You're Married
But I've Got Feelings Too
Patrick Watson - Wooden Arms
Wolf Parade - At Mount Zoomer
Women - Women
Woodpigeon - Treasury Library Canada
C/W Houndstooth Europa

No Julie Doiron?

The Long List is newly and proudly presented this year by the Canada Council for the Arts.

The jury will now take this list and vote again to come up with the Short List, which will be announced at 11am est on July 7 from the Sky Yard of the Drake Hotel in Toronto, and will be broadcast live across Canada and the U.S. on SIRIUS Satellite Radio Canada's CBC Radio 3 channel 86 at 11am EST.

Will post download links to these as I gt them... download and listen to the music. It goes without saying, but if you like the music, go see the band, tell your friends about them, maybe buy a t-shirt at their show...

And, if you want a Demonoid account, just ask and I can send you an invite.


Milwaukee was a blast! Went down to visit Jeremy's brother Basil, who now lives in Milwaukee after falling in love with it after going to school there. The drive down was mired in traffic after Gary Indiana, but we ended up getting in just before 7pm, in time to catch the Penguins beat the Wings. Watching from a local bar was another treat.

Basil ordered up some Jalapeno poppers for appetizers. Ordered in Toronto, you might get 4.. maybe 6. In Milwaukee, the standard Jalapeno app will net you well over 40 poppers! Awesome. After a few wings and burgers, Basil got us playing some darts... I lament not bringing the camera out that night; fantastic. The local scene still has smoking in bars (changing as of July 1st next year). Ashtrays beside the urinals was funny to see. Gambling machines throughout, as well as children sitting at the bar. The baseball game was on every tv; we had to ask to get game 7 on. Everyone there is super friendly, and we ended the night playing some Wii in Bas' basement... great night.

Next day we went to the Brewer's - Sox game, starting our tailgating experience at noon. There was a line-up to get into the parking lot three hours before the first pitch. White, mid-west America.

Setting up the tailgate. Aaron and Bas were amazing hosts, and they've clearly got this tailgating thing down.

Some bean-bag playing.


We were set up in the parking lot across the highway... there's a tunnel which allows a five minute walk to the park. Here the roof starts to open...

Aaron, who's good friends with Basil, thought of everything.

Tons of people in the parking lot.

That's Aaron there, bbqing.

Mmmm... bacon cheeseburgers and beans.

After lunch...

Basil shows us his 'wave' dance.

Porto-potty, on the back of a pick up...

Hank Aaron.

Miller Park. Retractable roof fans opens about 80 degrees from just behind home plate.

The old beer slide has been replaced.

Scoring the game!

Jeremy falls asleep; mistake.

Ahhh, Aaron and his masturbating beer bottle.

Can you guess which one is the Polish sausage?

So, after the game, while waiting for the boys' wives to pick us up (oh yeah.), we started the tailgate back up...

... and made some friends.

Here's Jer playing some parking lot football.

Basil gets Aaron into the wave dance.

Aaron gets rejected trying to masturbate his bottle once again.

Aficionado. That night we all ended up passing out at home just after 9pm. What a great day. And yes, that is Triple X beer, straight from duty free, as specially requested by Bas.

Next day, time to head back up to Canada.

Breakfast along the Chicago waterfront.

New Comiskey (U.S. Cellular Field).

And, of course, dinner at Arby's.



Fantastic time and road trip (I love road trips!), made especially great by our hosts. Thanks again, Basil, Nicky, and of course, Aaron.