A Flea in the Fur of the Beast

“Death, fire, and burglary make all men equals.” —Dickens

Category: Music

Live From the Frontiers of Real-Keeping

by evanmcmurry

This, right here? This is some spin:

For the actual performance, Josh, Chad, and I were playing along with the pre recorded track so there was no need to plug in our guitars, so we did not. Could we have plugged them in and avoided bumming people out who have expressed disappointment that the instrumental track was pre recorded? Of course easily we could have and this would be a non-issue. We thought it better to not pretend. It seemed like the realest thing to do in the circumstance.

Uh…huh. Flea went on to say that “The Red Hot Chili Peppers stance on any sort of miming has been that we will absolutely not do it,” but playing the Superb Owl was just such “a wild trippy thing to do” that they couldn’t pass it up.

This guy could do the Sunday shows.

NB: This is, of course, another example of life imitating The Simpsons.

The NFL Is Looking for Unpaid Interns to Perform at the Super Bowl Halftime Show

by evanmcmurry

The NFL is seeking experience-hungry artists to perform for byline credit at the Super Bowl halftime show. Repeat, this position is UNPAID, but a great opportunity for exposure:

So why does the Super Bowl have such a history of messing up what should be a simple thing? In other words, why isn’t Jay-Z making halftime an Empire State of Mind — after all, he has time for the DirecTV party in Manhattan on Super Bowl eve?

The simple answer is that the NFL doesn’t want to pay performers, and a lot of stars apparently don’t want to play for free, even if the NFL is technically a non-profit enterprise. Instead, artists use the opportunity for exposure, or to up their profile, maybe revive their careers.

Interested applicants should demonstrate a strong Twitter presence and a willingness to learn on the go.

tl;dr [fart]

by evanmcmurry

Like many people, I stop reading most articles about halfway through, and thus absorb all of life in brief, lede-dense doses. But if you don’t stick it out to the end, you’ll never get Merle Haggard’s advice on farting:

Haggard: I’ve always eaten a lot of beans, I don’t know why. I know it’s bird food, but I’m a big ol’ bird! I cook beans at home so much that they nicknamed me “The Bean Man.” Everything I’ve accomplished in life and that’s what they’ve reduced me to. The Bean Man.

Q: What’s your favorite way to cook beans?

Haggard: You can cook ’em several different ways. You can bake ’em, you can boil ’em, you can cook them plain and season them afterwards or you can season them during the time they’re cookin’. If you do it right they’re really good. And if you do it wrong, they’re really, really bad.

Q: I ask because I love cooking beans, too, but no matter what method I use I can’t get them right.

Haggard: Well sometimes you gotta cook ’em with Coca-Cola to get rid of the gas.

Q: Really?

Haggard: There are two things in life that cause gas: holding back laughter and cooking your beans the wrong way (laughs).

When the Review is Better Than the Album, Arcade Fire Edition

by evanmcmurry

A bad review can be a grand thing, and as someone who’s never really gotten Arcade Fire, this bad review was more enjoyable to read than the band is to hear:

 “Reflektor” isn’t neoclassicism. It’s something conservative pretending to be something bold. It’s Sandra Bullock’s hack dialogue in “Gravity.” It’s square, sexless, deeply unstylish, painfully obvious rock music. It’s an album with a song called “Porno” that you could play for your parents. It’s fraud.

Youch. Read the whole etc.

An Extraordinarily Brief History of Music Journalism

by evanmcmurry

Rolling Stone, upon the release of Bob Dylan’s Self Portrait forty-three years ago, in what is arguably the most famous album review of all time: “What is this shit?”

Rolling Stone, upon the release of the bootlegs from Bob Dylan’s Self Portrait sessions, today: “This two-CD set of previously unissued demos, alternate takes, scrapped arrangements and discarded songs from more than 40 years ago is one of the most important, coherent and fulfilling Bob Dylan albums ever released.” (It goes on like that.)

Fake Jay Z Show Draws Hundreds of Clueless Idiots to Bushwick

by bisonmessink


These are exactly the people you’d expect to show up to a fake secret Jay Z show in Bushwick. (Photo via Instagram user who calls herself mswellconnected)

Someone perpetrated a brilliant hoax against dim-witted hipsters on Saturday, starting a rumor that Jay Z was playing a “secret show” from a rooftop in Bushwick, a suburb of Brooklyn’s Williamsburg neighborhood.

Instead of blaming themselves, or the grinch who duped them, one of the attendees of the fake concert expressed her displeasure toward Jay Z (and @Beyonce) himself, for not debunking the rumor.


You’d think if these folks were such big Jay Z fans, they’d have remembered his lines from “Open Letter”:

Would’ve brought the Nets to Brooklyn for free
Except I made millions off it, you fuckin’ dweeb
I still own the building, I’m still keeping my seat
Y’all buy that bullshit, you’d better keep y’all receipt

h/t Gothamist

Has NPR Ever Listened To Tom Waits Before?

by evanmcmurry

All Things Considered debuts the new Tom Waits song:

We’ve got a bunch of new-year premieres for you, including a special collaboration between Tom Waits and Keith Richards. The two veteran musicians recorded a song together for a new compilation album called Son Of Rogue’s Gallery, and we guarantee it’s not at all what you’d expect. Do the word’s “sea chantey” mean anything to you?

Uh, sea chantey was exactly what I was expecting. In fact, that’s a little obvious; Waits has been at the helm of dirge-core for three decades. Now, if they made a pop hit, I’d be floored.

Great Gatsby Adaptation Now Being Made Exclusively By Rich People

by evanmcmurry

In case the trailer wasn’t enough to convince you that Baz Luhrmann was turning a dense critique of American wealth into an ostentatious buffet of it, obscenely rich human Jay-Z is now composing the score. Because why critique wealth when you can just have it?

Sayeth one cheerleader:

Considering that much of Jay-Z’s recent works have been obsessed with nothing but the spoils of fame, cash and New York, the rapper would be the clear, if obvious, choice to contemporize the story.

If you take Nick Carraway out of the novel, I suppose so.

On the bright side, at this rate the movie will never come out, so I guess they can do whatever they want.

Sentence of the Day

by evanmcmurry

“She’s got a really great voice under all of that autotune.”

Not to come off like a snob or anything, but that seems like pretty good proof that pop music took a wrong turn somewhere.

Mumford & Sons Is More Popular Than Justin Beiber (Bieber)

by evanmcmurry

Mumford and Sons is a lousy Neutral Milk Hotel ripoff, and every one of their songs sounds exactly like every other one. But their new album Babel sold 200,000 copies more in its first week than did Believe, the new release from future convenience store robber Justin Beiber (Bieber), so bully times ten for them. Remember, it was only two years ago that Nickelback was the highest selling rock act in contemporary music, so the fact that a folk-influenced, harmony-driven band like M&S—however derivative and narrow—can now claim the highest opening-week sales of the year says good things about where our music tastes are.