I Ain't No Superman

(Add / View Comments) (0)Monday, July 31, 2006 - 11:30:36 pm
(Posted Under: TV)
Ahh, an episode of Scrubs can make any Monday look up.

It's funny how the simple things can make you go it for another week! Never overlook the little things in life.
Now Playing: Lit - Lipstick And Bruises


(Add / View Comments) (0)Thursday, July 27, 2006 - 07:39:04 pm
(Posted Under: TV)
Do you remember when "X program coming up next" signalled that the current ad break was the last one before the next program started? What happened to those days?

Since watching My Name Is Earl, I've also been watching How I Met Your Mother, and the last 3 weeks I have noticed that the ad for Earl "next" happens on the first lot of ads. It screws with my head, damn it!

The Gins

(Add / View Comments) (0)Wednesday, July 26, 2006 - 09:00:08 pm
(Posted Under: Tempe Music Scene Tempe Music Scene, Music Music)
So it looks like Hybrid is getting behind the Blossoms, their new website, created by the record company has gone live - http://www.thegins.com/. I must say that I'm suprised, and impressed the push that the band and album appear to be getting. To be honest, I had my doubts about Hybrid.

It's really nice to see the old logo flying. The site looks pretty good. Typical sort of record company site, but still it looks pretty cool.

Th domain name for the website is quite, err, intuative though - thegins.com? Let's hope it gets indexed in Google well. [wink]

Major Lodge Victory Leaked

...And My First Thoughts On The Album

(Add / View Comments) (0)Sunday, July 23, 2006 - 03:23:08 am
(Posted Under: Tempe Music Scene Tempe Music Scene, Music Music)
Today I spent a good amount of time listening to Pandora, which has tracks from Major Lodge Victory on it. I got Someday Soon a billion times, Super Girl about half as much, and some rotations of Learning The Hard Way and The End Of The World.

Given that I only got those four songs, in addition to Hey Jealousy, Found Out About You, Until I Fall Away, Follow You Down and Day Job leads me to believe that Pandora only plays singles.

During the session I got to hear Crackers Teen Angst (What The World Needs Now), which was actually a major coop, as I've never heard the studio version before, and have been trying to download it lately (I would buy the CD, but that is a whole nother blog entry! [smile] ). In addition, Ashbrook's Scotch and a Handgun got played, which was impressive (that it was on Pandora).

But neither the less, back to the Gin Blossoms - as of about 12 hours ago, Major Lodge Victory has leaked onto the internet in it's entirety. Probably not suprising since advanced copies have been sent out to over the place for at least a week, but still it's over two weeks before the official release date - leaked on July 21st, to be released August 8th.

There was some question to whether I should listen to it before the release date. Some obviously not being a lot...

One of the first things I'd note, which I'd been suspecting earlier this week - I really like Someday Soon. That was one that when I first saw the track list kinda cringed at seeing on there, but I really think it works. To me, it's As Long As It Matters, but actually done right. I might get over it, but I hope not, because I'm quite into it right now! I wonder if that is because of when I first heard the song - quite possible.

Learning The Hard Way I've known for over a month now - Learning is to Major Lodge Victory what Follow You Down was to Congratulations I'm Sorry. At the end of the day, it's the song of the album.

Come On Hard sounds awesome - reminds me a lot of the demo version, but more polished. Probably my second favorite song on the album. Which is funny to think back, when I'd first heard it - Robin doing it acoustic years ago, and I really didn't like it! While there are other parts of the album I get excited about, at the end of the day I think this would have to be my second favorite track, and I'm sure will be one that stands the test of time. Come on hard at night, I pine for you and no other...woo!

Heart Shaped Locket has previously sounded lame on the Amazon and such previews - though it definately sounds better in it's full version - I really like the chorus, very catchy!

The Edge Of The World is great - I actually heard it a few times in it's entirity on Pandora. I think something is lost in translation though. I don't mean on the album either - I think this has been true ever since the band started doing the song. For me, Robin's older acoustic version has more grit, and at the end of the day prefer over the more produced Blossoms version - I personally would have opted for a more acoustic / Until I Fall Away arrangement. The background vocals in it seem very dramatic also. It's great, but I guess I was more physced about it back in the day.

Long Time Gone is a rocker - not much more to say, it rocks! Love it!

Super Girl - another one that I've heard in it's entirety a few times today already. It's sad that it doesn't have the intro that they played at the XM Radio show that was broadcast last year - that was amazing, and was my immediate attraction to the song. Not present on the album. Which is fine, but a shame, because it's what Katie and I would these days call "uuchk!". Neither the less, a highlight of the album - Super Girl is one of those really great pop songs - in that I can't place what it is about it that makes it so good, but it is!

Let's Play Two - never cared for this one live. Actually, I finally saw the band for the first time after being a huge fan for 12 odd years, and this song pretty much bored me! It admitadly sounds better on the record. Definately has some Spark elements, like the guitar riff - which just kinda sounds strange at the moment. Although I don't particularly get the song, I do at least like it more than I have previously.

Curious Thing - Hall And Oates meets The Rembrandts. I'm not sure how to take this song. I don't dislike it, but then again, I'm not entirely sure why the Blossom's are playing it.

Jet Black Sunrise - Great song - not sure about this version yet though. End Of The World comments may apply here - I probably would have done it differently.

Fool For The Taking - it's always been not a favorite, but can dig it. That's probably still true, definately behind the favorites, but ahead of the others. The crazy ass rock ending kicks ass!

California Sun - I don't get it. I like the song fine, I always have, but it doesn't fit on the record. That's what solo careers were invented for!

The album is quite noticibly heavy on the Jesse side. Not to mention writing a whopping 10 out of 12 songs on the album, but the backing vocals are very noticibly much more thick than on Congratulations I'm Sorry or New Miserable Experience. This is true of almost every track as it comes to a close. And, to me California Sun, sung by Jesse, sounds like something left off Tunes Young People Will Enjoy. The idea of Jesse singing something on this record, like Cheatin' on New Miserable Experience I liked, but I'm not to thrilled by California Sun.

I would also note an audiable Danny Wilde / Rembrandts influence over most of the album - Jet Black is one of the few tracks that escape this, and ring true of a Gin Blossoms sound. In some places it feels like a bit of a personality crisis to me, to some degree anyway.

It's no New Miserable Experience, but then I didn't expect it would be. I was actually listening to New Miserable recently, and thought how it'd be a complete shock if another album ever eclipsed it. Which is fine, because I don't really want another New Miserable Experience. It does definately eclipse Congratulations I'm Sorry.

Very pro the album!
Now Playing: Gin Blossoms - Come On Hard


(Add / View Comments) (0)Friday, July 21, 2006 - 11:55:45 pm
(Posted Under: No Category)
At 29, you'd think I'd know better, living life like a kid.

Yep, it's that time, the year has arrived, that all Gin Blossoms fans take note of.

I was lucky to get a listen of 29 in, just before my birthday technically ended - not that I don't have a whole year ahead of me to play it! [wink]

I've spent tonight, after the birthday festivities, playing the guitar, mostly Johnny Hickman - mostly The Great Decline. Katie sent me his album for my birthday. I can feel my arm getting better every week, tonight I was able to play standing up (my favorite way), and also play open chords, which I couldn't really do comfortably last week.
Now Playing: Gin Blossoms - 29

David Lee Roth Has Lost His Mind

(Add / View Comments) (0)Friday, July 21, 2006 - 03:09:46 am
(Posted Under: Music Music)
Recently Katie mentioned to me the new David Lee Roth album of country renditios of country songs. I still have Launchcast on, hoping for another track off of Major Lodge Victory. Jump from David's album has just come on...

Talk about the most fucking ridiculouus think I've ever heard! The sum total of instruments are violins, banjos and David's vocals - seriously, the most ridiculous thing I've every heard! [smile]

Just when you thought the Van Halen story couldn't get any worse... [smile]

In other news, it looks like Come On Hard was a fluke - I've gotten no other tracks from Major Lodge Victory thus far, after skipping tracks for about half an hour.
Now Playing: Jump - David Lee Roth

Come On Hard on Launchcast

(Add / View Comments) (0)Friday, July 21, 2006 - 02:12:11 am
(Posted Under: Tempe Music Scene Tempe Music Scene, Music Music)
Okay, so the new Blossoms record is on Yahoo Launchcast.

Tonight, trying it out, I got Come On Hard after skipping about 8 songs. When it started, for a second, I actually thought it was Learnin' The Hard Way, which would have been a kick in the teeth! [smile] It sounded much like the demo version musically, obviously with more polish and production. There are some strange reverb effects in Robin's vocals during the chorus', which - I can't say is a good decision. Otherwise, I really liked how the song sounds!

Now, what is the chance I'll get something off Major Lodge Victory again? Probably not too great. Yet I'll probably continue to hit 'skip'. [smile]

What The World Needs Now...

Is Another Guitar Player

(Add / View Comments) (0)Friday, July 14, 2006 - 11:06:03 pm
(Posted Under: Music Music)
Tonight I picked up the guitar for the first time since Sunday May 14th - a little before Katie's guitar lesson, the second day in Tempe. I didn't realise until just now that it's pretty much 2 months to the day. I wasn't sure if I was ready for it, but listening to Cracker, I couldn't not try. It went suprisingly well. Avoided open chords as that kinda hurt my shoulder reaching down that far, however playing from the 3rd fret upwards, albiet carefully, went fine.

It's funny how it seems like these days I go for long periods without playing the guitar. But after my finger tips really started to hurt after an hour - something that I haven't experienced to this degree for 15 years, when I first started - I know that I certainly do not go 2 months without playing! I obviously pick it up for frequently than it seems.

The session pretty much consisted of working out Teen Angst, Duty Free and The Great Decline. My fingers smay have softened up over the two months, but my ear certainly hasn't, it took no time to work them all out. And we great to play. As it was to just play again at all!

Suprisingly, while i was worried that it might be a bad move, my shoulder felt noticibly better after playing!
Now Playing: Cracker - Teen Angst (What The World Needs Now) (Live)

Gin Blossoms on WMVX

(Add / View Comments) (0)Friday, July 14, 2006 - 07:43:19 am
(Posted Under: Tempe Music Scene Tempe Music Scene, Music Music)
I've been listening to WMVX out of Cleveland over the 'net since about 2am this morning, as the Blossoms were supposed to be in the studio at noon (US Eastern Time), at it to be aired between 4pm and 5pm. 5 hours later, I'm finally listening to it. It was first mentioned as 'coming up' just before 3pm, sounding like it might be in the 3-4pm hour. No such luck. 4-5 also went by with a lot of talk, but no action. Finally it was at 5:30 that something happened. It's certainly been frustrating and annoying waiting.

Worthwhile hearing, since there was some talk to Jesse, Robin and Scott, Learning The Hardway, and Follow You Down and Until I Fall Away acoustic, but an annoying wait neither the less. Nice to hear the boys on the radio again though!

In other random comments about listening to WMVX, it was hilarious that when it was first mentioned on the air, at around 3pm), Jessie's Girl was played. It was also unbelievable, and unbelievably annoying how much increase in volume there was during commercials. I know it's somewhat common on TV and radio these days, but thisn was insane!
Now Playing: Gin Blossoms - Follow You Down (Acoustic/Live)

Major Valenzuela Victory

Album Info and Clips Out

(Add / View Comments) (0)Friday, July 14, 2006 - 06:44:46 am
(Posted Under: Tempe Music Scene Tempe Music Scene, Music Music)
So in the last few hours, the song writing credits and sound clips for the Gin Blossom's Major Lodge Victory have started showing up on online music stores.

Talk about a, as it's affectionally dubbed, Major Valenzuela Victory! By the Gin Diablos! Let's take a look at the writing credits break down. While it isn't suprising in that Jesse has no doubt done a lot of writing with Susan and Danny, that is a huge amount of material co-written outside of the band, (previously on Mrs. Rita and 'Til I Hear It From You being the only two songs co-written externally to the band). Furthermore Jesse has written the most songs individually, and is credited for every song except one - although, in all fairness, Come On Hard is probably mistakenly accredited to him, rather than Robin. Still, that's credit for all but 2 of the songs.

Hopkin's 6 songs on New Miserable Experience was always considered a lot / the main player on the record. Jesse's effort on Major Lodoge Victory blows this out of the water.

The fact of this aside, the songs sound pretty good. Come On Hard, it's hard to tell how different it is to the demo with the highly compressed same. Someday Soon, which I originally cringed about making the album over other songs may garner a different reaction from me once I hear the album - I think I might be pro it, despite my previous secret bashing of the song.

Heart Shaped Locket really sounded - rather gay. I thought it was going to be good, but maybe it won't be. End Of The World sounded like the demo, although it better. Long Time Gone sounds like it's going to be really good. Super Girl sounded pretty good too, and suprisingly Let's Play Two didn't sound as bad as I expected. Curious Thing sounded - well, not good at all. Jet Black Sunrise sounded much the same as what we're used to, and Fool For The Taking sounded like it has the potential to sound better than I expected. California Sun - well actually sounded exactly like the Tres Diablos version. It'll be interesting to hear the song, in full with CD quality. But the sample posted thus far really sounds like the Tres Diablos version.

All in all, it sounds like it's going to be a great record. Not sure of some of the songs let, but overall, I'm anticipating it.
Now Playing: The Clash - Rock The Casbar

A Powerful Statement From Johnny Hickman

(Add / View Comments) (0)Thursday, July 13, 2006 - 10:55:54 pm
(Posted Under: Music Music)
From that Hickman show that I've been listening to...

I've had a love affair with your beautiful state going back about 15 years since Cracker first started coming and playing here in Colorado. David and I seriously fell in love.
Cracks me up every time I hear it! [smile]

Johnny goes on to talk about falling in love with a girl (who he married) in Colorado - there's just too much falling in love going on in that between song banter. [smile]
Now Playing: Johnny Hickman - Beauregarde's Retreat (Gothic Theatre, Englewood, CO - 08/19/2005)

Major Lodge Victory

Not The Best Song Victory!

(Add / View Comments) (0)Wednesday, July 12, 2006 - 01:37:04 am
(Posted Under: Tempe Music Scene Tempe Music Scene, Music Music)
The track listing for Major Lodge Victory is out, a little under a month before it's release.

  1. Learning The Hard Way
  2. Come On Hard
  3. Someday Soon
  4. Heart Shaped Locket
  5. The End Of The World
  6. Long Time Gone
  7. Super Girl
  8. Let's Play Two
  9. Curious Thing
  10. Jet Black Sunrise
  11. Fool For The Taking
  12. California Sun
Immediately the ommision of Stop! is apparent! I'm really shocked that it's not on there! Suicidal Advocacy and Collider not being there aren't shocking, because I'd heard indirectly from Johnson (through Katie) that they weren't going to be on the record. But I really can't believe Stop! isn't on there, especially since it's still in heavy rotation live. There goes their perfect second single! [wink] I'm sure Johnson wanted to keep it for his solo record - and who could fucking blame him! [smile] But I was hoping to see it on both albums.

Secondly it's a disappointment that Robin's To Hell And Back isn't on the album. I wasn't sure if it was or wasn't going to, but once we heard the demo version, it seemed quite possible. The song absolutely rocks, definately a favorite new Blossoms song of mine. Sounds absolutely great electric, it's a shame that it isn't on the record, love it! Horray for demos I guess.

The other ommision is When She Comes By, which is no major loss to me, neither that or Someday Soon have done that much for me.

Heart Shaped Locket and Curious Thing are unknown to me. I'm sure I'd know Heart Shaped Locket if we'd actually seen the band in California last month! Curious Thing no-one seems to know anything about.

Katie phoned me during Long Time Gone 2 weeks ago, and at least over the phone that sounded like a full out rocker, I'm interested to hear that again.

Sommeday Soon, Let's Play Two and Fool For The Taking look like the duller part of the album. And I'm suprised to see California Sun on the track list. I've always liked this song (done by Tres Diablos), but...can't picture it as a Gin Blossoms song. Always sounded to me like something that would be on the Tres Diablos record, or Jesse's next solo album. Really strange to think it's on Major Lodge Victory.

It's kinda suprising too that Let's Play Two is on the album. And isn't suprising, given how much that song has been pimped (talked about as the first single a year ago). But is certainly not the strongest song in the world (in my opinion), snd there are at least three that didn't make the cut that are more worthy.

It's also interesting the amount of Tres Diablos material that has wound up on the album (Fool For The Taking, California Sun, and possibly Let's Play Two - Sandburg had at least a hand in it), and further to that end, the number of Valenzxuela penned tunes - at least 6, over half the album, possibly more, depending on who penned Heart Shaped Locket, Long Time Gone and Curious Thing.

I'm looking forward to hearing the album versions of Come On Hard, Heart Shaped Locket, The End Of The World, Long Time Gone. Super Girl and Jet Black Sunrise.

This is obviously all opinions based on not having heard the album. It may all be different once I hear it. Not long now - a little under a month!
Now Playing: Gin Blossoms - To Hell And Back Again (The Mayberry Sessions)

My Name Is Earl Quote #2

(Add / View Comments) (0)Thursday, July 6, 2006 - 08:10:56 pm
(Posted Under: TV)
I was going to focus on quitting smoking. But it turns out, quitting smoking is stressful. And when I'm stressed out...I smoke.
Ain't that the truth. So poignant given I haven't had a cigarette in 11 days!

Again this week there is a runner up...

Quittin' is hard Randy. I didn't smoke for a whole hour, and I started to shake. My system is used to running on more tar.
I love Earl!

Kevin Montgomery @ Hogs Breath

(Add / View Comments) (0)Wednesday, July 5, 2006 - 04:08:01 pm
(Posted Under: Music Music)
Today I read about Kevin Montgomery (obviously with Danny White) playing in Florida at the Hogs Breath, which streams over the internet. Cooool ass!

Funny hearing them do American Girl - I wonder how look it took Danny to learn it. [wink] They also did the most interesting version of You Shook Me All Night Long - never heard that country style. The other thing I liked was End Of The Set (a play on R.E.M's End Of The World) which was awesome, as the last song.

Afterwards they had a request, which they did as their actual last song, which was the best of them all - Cajun Song. There's just something that is too good hearing a Blossoms song covered! [wink]

Apparently they're playing there for the next few nights, so I'll have to tune in again!
Now Playing: Kevin Montgomery - Cajun Song (Live)

WAZTempe Sucks

(Add / View Comments) (0)Sunday, July 2, 2006 - 02:17:11 am
(Posted Under: Geek, Travel)

Wi-Fi lessons learned in Tempe.

Well I can certainly concur that the WAZTempe network sucks ass. Not through lack of trying, I wasn unable to connect to it once. Inside, outside, on the top of the buttes, nothing made a difference.

Interesting to see the article right after getting back though!
Now Playing: Johnny Hickman - Tell Her (The Gothic Theatre, Englewood, CO - 08/19/2005)


(Add / View Comments) (0)Sunday, July 2, 2006 - 01:43:24 am
(Posted Under: Music Music)
Post Mexico, I'm glad to have the Johnny Hickman live show I downloaded last year (opening for the Peacemakers). I've definately had some jonesin' for Hickman tunes. My awesome girlfriend has brought me Palmhedge, but pending the arrival of that (or her being done with it herself [wink] ) having this show rocks. I'd listened to it once, but not gotten around to listening to it again.

Particularly I enjoy Lucky - such a relatable song. [smile] Actually, I remember saying exactly what does Lucky does 6 years ago. And is ever true right now. Great, great song - definantely one of my favorites at the moment. Listening to it totally takes me back to being at the Sunset Cantina lot in Mexico, dark had fallen and David and Johnny were doing the song. Which certainly also adds to listeneing to it. The rest of the show, even the songs I'm not familar with are really listenable. Johnny is quite impressive.

I must say, I can't wait to hear The Great Decline again, which isn't on this live recording.

Not to be cliche, but I feel pretty lucky that I got to see Johnny both at Last Exit with Steve, and in Mexico with Lowery!
Now Playing: Johnny Hickman - Whole Lotta Trouble

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