Archive | April, 2009

Matt and Kim are the happiest people around

30 Apr

I’ve recently got into a Brooklyn-based duo, Matt and Kim. Like Mates of State, they are married, and carrying on a completely functional band.

And I love it.

They’re slightly younger sounding and more upbeat than Mates of State, but still quite similar.

Again, I love it.

Where did I first read about them…I was reading Jim Shearer’s IFC blog, “The Indie Ear,” and he posted a blog about the coolest couples in music, and Matt and Kim were one of them. Others includes Jason and Kori from Mates of State, Jay-Z and Beyonce, Gavin and Gwen, and Win and Regine from Arcade Fire.

So I was curious. Well, turns out that Jim posted another blog a few days later about Matt and Kim stripping down to their socks in their newest music video (“Lessons Learned,” above”). Then I was really curious, so I searched around the internets via Google and found their self-titled first album, and then the newest one, Grand.

Since then, they’ve been the other band that I haven’t stopped listening to, aside from City on Film, Hey Mercedes and Braid.

But anyway. When you do find Matt and Kim on…Myspace I think…and you will, “Don’t Slow Down,” “Daylight,” “Dash after Dash,” and of course “Lessons Learned” are my favorites. You can pick out some of your own, but I highly recommend them.

I actually read in an interview that the new record, Grand was recorded in Matt’s childhood bedroom. Isn’t that cute? Everything about them is cute. I swear they are always smiling. As you can see in the “Yeah Yea” video above. They still are smiling even if they are getting pelted by nasty food.

Oh, and today is a good day so far. Well, I lost internet connection for an hour, but for the Threadless prizewheel thursday videos, Kristen and Bob played a song I chose for Bob to DJ tomorrow night. I didn’t get a spin, but it’s okay, because it was “Paris is Burning” by Ladyhawke. Bad. Ass. Song.

Go listen to all of them.

Now!

❤ Abby

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The end to a wonderfully relaxing weekend

27 Apr

Mother, Father and Libby came home tonight at 9:30, and it marked the completion of the most relaxing weekend I’ve ever had.

Seriously. Short film screening on friday. The zoo on saturday. Work out at the Y and out to dinner for mexican food yesterday. Downloading a buttload of music and taking the dog for a walk today. And only a little homework. I have yet to finish tomorrow’s reading for Faust, but I’ll do that after I’m finished writing this.

I’m pretty sure I’ve downloaded almost 200 songs in the last 4 days. Most of them were some work of Bob Nanna’s, and some were Matt and Kim, some were Chester French, the Amelie soundtrack, Aloha, and The Go! Team.

I don’t know why I had the sudden inkling to find a bunch of Bob Nanna’s stuff, but after watching the Prizewheel thursday videos from Threadless, I became a little curious about the people that work behind the tees.

And what I found was a treasure trove of musical projects on Nanna’s part. I believe he’s been a part of four bands, and just recently, started up another one. And all of this since the early 90s. The only one I could find online for the low low cost of nothing was Hey Mercedes, the last band he was in, which is similar to The Get Up Kids, Jimmy Eat World… late 90s indie rock. The earlier ones were more punky – makes sense, since the guys were younger. But I’ve developed a little infatuation with Nanna’s music. It’s nice to get little jingles each week for Threadless and covers on the Prizewheel thursday videos. What are the Prizewheel thursday videos? Well, they’re only available for Threadless’ Facebook friends, hosted by Bob Nanna and Kristen Studdard. They ask random questions for fans to write back in the comments, and they pick people to spin the wheel to give them gift cards, dance parties, “one of each,” in which the winner gets one of each of that week’s new Threadless tees. And what makes Prizewheel thursday so much more entertaining is that Bob and Kristen record a video each hour from 11 am until 5 pm. For me, it’s from 9-3, since Chicago is two hours ahead, but it’s still funny.

I completely went off on a tangent…HEY! But what I was trying to get at was the prolificacy of Nanna’s music groups. And they all have something a little different to offer. I’m listening to his solo project, The City on Film, at the moment. It’s softer and more acoustic that any of Nanna’s previous bands, and similar to Rocky Votolato and the New Amsterdams. I highly recommend you hit up his last.fm pages.

The City on Film
Hey Mercedes
Braid
Friction

And perhaps check out the Threadless mini-jingles on BNanna’s Threadless profile. My favorite is “Africa.”

Heck, just go HERE.

Don’t sue me for having a little crush.

I can’t post any of the City On Film stuff since they’re .m4p files, itunes DRM-protected, but here are a couple Hey Mercedes songs.
Stay Six
Unorchestrated
And one of the Threadless jingles. It’s appropriate.
Blog

I’m eagerly awaiting some recorded material from Certain People I Know.

And one last random thought. I wish all of the world looked and operated as Montmartre, France in Amélie. Where I could leave notes in men’s pockets and they would come find me in my brightly-colored apartment and then kiss me without speaking. Oh how life would be so much more interesting.

And I didn’t realize that Nino in the movie was Mathieu Kassovitz, who directed La Haine, a French film we watched in my Intro to Film studies class fall quarter. Now that was random.

❤ Abby

No Oscars or comic books for us.

25 Apr

No, we didn’t. But all the movies were really good, so I didn’t feel bad.

First of all – I HATE TRAFFIC. As stupid as I was to leave at 4 p.m. driving south on 1-5, I was on the highway for an hour and a half. I literally made it 10 exits in almost a half an hour. That’s the one thing that makes me so angry – breaking on the highway and being so fucking cautious that it slows down the cars behind you for a good 20 miles. I’m surprised that my voice isn’t gone, because I was screaming at the top of my lungs for 10 miles, and I swear my head was going to explode. So I made it to Michael’s apartment right at 5:30, which is when the Capital Theater opened their doors, but it was okay because when we got their at 6:10, the show hadn’t started yet. Little did I know – the screening was at the same time as the Arts Walk so Capital Way was blocked off for a good three blocks. I sure made it easier to find the theater in the daytime though. Last year, we were basically lost for 20 minutes trying to find it.

Shit! I forgot to ask if we could have our tapes back! I was in such a rush to go pee that I didn’t ask Cooper. Dangit. I don’t even remember what was on that tape after our film. I think it was footage from my project fall quarter for Critical Approaches to Mass Comm. where I interviewed Libby and Courtney. At least it isn’t anything embarrassing.

Our film was second to last on the schedule, so we got to sit through basically all the videos before getting to ours. But that also made me more nervous, because ours wasn’t nearly as good as some of the other videos. This one – called Untitled, that won audience favorite – did the idea that we thought of at one point, to just make it about deciding what to do the movie about. It was so funny. And it was one of my favorites.

Overall, the films were much better this year than last year, which made me feel worse, because Sweet Adeline was better than Video Games. But then again – I had a lot of shit to do last weekend so I didn’t have time to do anything better. I think there was only one that was really dumb and didn’t make any sense. There were a couple other ones that didn’t make much sense, but they were shot really well the editing was really well done.

The film that won first place – Fir – was one of them. I wish I could find it on Youtube, but it wouldn’t have the full effect, because instead of editing in the music, they played live music as the film played. Drums, guitar, distortion pedal, electric violin – it was all very cool. Michael said at one point that it made him uncomfortable because it was so bizarre. Kind of frightening too. But deserving of the first place prize – since it was so damn original.

I found several videos on Youtube, which were pretty funny – not any of the winners, but got a lot of laughs.

ROFLMAO.

There were 19 films total, and ours was number 18. I will say that we got laughs at points where people were supposed to laugh. The reactions were appropriate – when I got socked in the tit, people went “ooohhhh.” When the movie was over, people clapped. But the points where people laughed the most was when Libby and Courtney first popped on screen, and when Libby zoomed in on Ian’s, or “karate kid’s” face towards the end.

So I was proud of our movie, but not remotely expecting to win anything, which is how we felt last year. I wasn’t bitter this time.

Which is good.

But I have to go get ready to leave for the zoo. I’m going today with my Uncle, his friends and their kids. I haven’t been to the Point Defiance zoo in a good 10 years. So it should be fun. I’ll take LOTS OF PICTURES. And it’s a nice day, so that makes it much better.

It snowed in Reno last night. Seriously. Libby got there thursday and Mom and Dad – GET THIS – got there last night. But that’s not the funny part. When Mom and Dad woke up at the butt crack of dawn yesterday, they were going to park their car at my uncle Jerry’s house. So they got there, in Auburn, and my Dad checked online to see if he could print their plane tickets. APPARENTLY, my father doesn’t know the difference between AM and PM. Yeah. He woke my mom up that early to then come back here at 9. And the drive back at 5:30 to make their 8 P.M. flight. I have material to make fun of my father for a good week now. Haha.

I vlogged when I got home last night.

❤ Abby

Dr. Faustus makes me angry

21 Apr

I read Dr. Faustus senior year of high school, during the spring, so I don’t remember anything from it except the demons and Mephistopheles. I honestly remember Portrait of an Artist as a Young Man (even though I HATED IT) more than Dr. Faustus, mostly because of Joey’s interpretive dance. I’ll see if I can find a link to it so I can post it.
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I found it!
Joey Interprets Joyce
It’s hilarious. Especially if you read the book.
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But I’m currently reading Goethe’s Faust for my literature class, and if I’d remembered anything from Dr. Faustus, it would have made writing our daily responses much easier, also today’s lack of comprehension could be attributed to my insane weekend. Once I actually start reading Faust, it will be easier to get into. Hopefully. I don’t want this whole quarter to be me half-assing these books. Next week will be better. Or just tomorrow will be better. I didn’t feel like going to class today because we were still talking about Gulliver, and I needed to do homework for my other class, and start on my paper on Gulliver for my literature class.

But I’m blogging instead.

Lordy I’m easily distracted.

The paper came out today, which is a relief, because I was worried that somehow the universe would hate me and make the printer do something wrong or the formatting would be wrong or all the pages would be blank.

Front page

I’m just glad that everyone worked out alright, because we had to do all the layout from my Mac, because CS3 isn’t convertible to CS2. Fucking Adobe.

So I drove down to Olympia last night to drop off our movie, and I almost couldn’t find Old School Pizza, but I found it quicker than I did last year. Thankfully, it wasn’t dark like February of last year either so it was easier to see the street signs and the big building will graffiti all over the walls outside – that was obviously Old School. But unfortunately, Cooper and Zack weren’t there yet when I arrived, so I left it with the cashier. Hopefully they got it because she said she’d been collecting entries from other people. I’ll be seriously pissed if they didn’t get it, because then this weekend would have been for NOTHING. Hell, it was fun anyway. Just stressful and made me age a good 3 years.

Not really. But I’m off to read what I have to of Faust, and maybe get some lunch. Ooo, maybe I’ll get that yummy salad with the raspberry vinaigrette, craisins, candied walnuts and feta cheese. It’s absolutely scrumptious.

❤ Abby

Video Games

20 Apr

I’m finally finished shooting, capturing, and editing our movie. We did one last shot this morning and all the voiceover and music.

Why, is this entry titled Video Games, you may ask?

Well, that’s the title of our movie. It’s about “live action” mortal kombat-style gaming. Instead of video game characters, Libby, Courtney, Lindsay, and Ian were our characters. Laura and I were the ones actually playing the game. I was so stressed this weekend, because Indesign CS3 doesn’t convert to CS2, so I had to do all the layout on my computer for the Ledger.

And when I got home from the Ledger, I couldn’t find the cord to capture the video from my camera, so I didn’t get editing until 10 o’clock. I went to bed at about 3:30 a.m, after all the initial editing was done. This morning I woke up to shoot one last scene with Libby and finish up this thing.

I got 5 hours of sleep. And I’m not tired.

At all. It’s weird. Now all I have to do is drive my tape down to Old School tonight at 7 to turn it in. I just want to get it overwith, and got watch all the films on friday.

I’m just pissed that I have to miss James Carville tonight.

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And now I give you –

VIDEO GAMES

I’ll upload a higher quality one later.

Yay!

❤ Abby

We’re getting “shot to the face.”

16 Apr

I wished I didn’t have a paper due next thursday on Gulliver’s Travels.

Because I have WAY too much crap to do this weekend. Layout, start reading Faust, response paper and literature essay due thursday….AND SHOOTING.

Yes, it is that weekend again, the one that consists of three intensive days of filming our short masterpiece. I’m not sure exactly how long it has to be – that we’ll find out tomorrow night from the prompt, as well as the rest of the limitations for our story. However, I’ve been brainstorming some ideas, so we don’t have to cram brainstorming and scripting friday night and saturday morning before we head out to Tacoma for shooting.

Why will we be shooting in Tacoma, you may ask?

Well, I will be doing double duty – layout and filming at the same time. But thankfully, Libby doesn’t have a tournament this weekend, so I have her as my minion all weekend to help. Last year she only had one small part in making our video – her last line “Shit.”

Needless to say, she’ll have a much larger part in making this movie this time around.

I’m really hoping that we win something this year, because last year’s prizes were very delectable, at least they were to Ian. He was practically foaming at the mouth when they announced a grocery bag full of comic books as one of the prizes.

We still need to think of a team name. We didn’t have one last year and it was lame, because all the groups who made good movies had cool names.

For some reason, based on last year’s video, I wanted to call our team “Stanley’s Bitches.” I don’t know why, but it was the first thing that popped into my head. As well as the crazy storyline of Stanley, the cheating blender, headlong into alcoholic oblivion, selling his body on the streets of Tacoma. With some sort of car chase involved. But I want some sort of deeper social commentary involved. That’s how “Sweet Adeline” ended up last year. That’s the thing that pissed Ian and I off about some of the other films in the competition – some didn’t make any sense and didn’t have a lot of substance. We’re hoping to redeem ourselves this year.

Just a reminder.

❤ Abby

“I’m going to marry him.”

14 Apr

That’s what my sister said after she saw Kris’s performance on American Idol tonight.

Even though he’s 23, and he’s married already. But still. *Swoon*

This will be taken down within a few hours, because Fox hates Youtube, but I figured I’d post it now, and replace it with some other audio recording later.

Not only is Kris irresistibly fine, he can sing, play guitar AND piano, AND he chose the Oscar-winning song from Once – a pretty obscure song compared to the rest of the cheesetastic shitballs that the rest of the idols chose. I honestly thought that if Lil Rounds would have chosen Whitney from Officer and a Gentleman, I would have thrown the remote at the television.

I don’t know what the hell Randy was talking about when he “didn’t get” Kris’s performance, but a performance I “didn’t get” and who I never really “get” is Danny Gokey. He has no originality, can’t change up a song at all, choses constantly cheesy songs enough to make a middle-aged woman fangasm, and is annoying.

What’s also driving me crazy about American Idol news is how much the freaking talking heads are shitting over Adam’s gayness. “Will his sexuality damage his game?” Bill O’Reilly said last week on his “show.” I only caught it because it was on the television at the YMCA. I can’t escape it.

But anyone who’s just catching on to Adam’s dragtastic photos online are dumbasses. We’ve all known it for over a month, and it obviously hasn’t hurt his game at all yet. I honestly think it’s helping his chances. We haven’t had an openly gay idol since Clay Aiken, and it’s about time we had another one.

This gif makes me laugh.

❤ Abby