Monday, February 27, 2006

Amazing. And again. This s--- is B-A-N-A-N-A-S, kids. Like whoa.

Thursday, February 09, 2006

Our Fearless Leader at Stylus, Todd Burns, comes up with great front page images each week - but this week's he's rather outdone himself, don't you think? Just gorgeous.

Wednesday, February 08, 2006

As much as I hate to say it, that new Pink single, "Stupid Girls," is pretty good. In spite of its guitar, it sounds like a return to her more R&B-influenced pop sound of years gone by. And though I know nothing about her besides that she's a UK phenom (and seems to annoy lots of people), I like K.T. Tunstall's "Black Horse & the Cherry Tree" fine, too. Neither song, however, is as good as Carrie Underwood's "Jesus Take the Wheel," which seems to just get better and more resonant with each spin. (She'd damned well better be up for the Best New Artist Grammy next year, like Fantasia should be this year...)

Oh yeah, you know I'll be watching the Grammys tonight. How could I not? Haven't decided yet if I'll blog 'em in realtime like I did last year.

Tuesday, February 07, 2006

Speed round:

Still haven't seen Walk the Line yet, but CMT's rotating a clip of Joaquin and Reese singing "Jackson" from the film very heavily. They sound great, but don't sound like Johnny and June. I'd love to hear Reese cut something contemporary.

The bf and I accidentally discovered a new restaurant Saturday night, just driving around looking for someplace to eat; I love when that happens. It's Pizza Place California in San Gabriel (CA, duh), and it's not just pizza, though we did try the Sashimi Tuna Pizza. It's sashimi tuna, avocado, cucumber, wasabi mousse and a touch of soy, on their handmade pizza crust. It didn't quite work as pizza, but was a fine combo of flavors. Much more successful was their crab cake salad, a sumptuous mix of greens (I believe argula was present, as was frisee) dressed lightly in a balsamic vinaigrette, topped with a trio of meaty crab cakes - yes, apparently you can find good ones on this side of the country - served with a perfect lemon/cayenne mayonnaise for dipping. Both of these dishes were listed as appetizers, but the two of us couldn't quite even finish both of them. As an added bonus (for me, at least), the restaurant was piping in a satellite radio Muzak station (heaven!). Service was impeccable - just as attentive as you'd hope, without overdoing it - which was especially impressive considering we made it in the doors just 15 minutes before their listed closing time. If you're in the area, Pizza Place California is at 303 S. Mission Drive in San Gabriel; their telephone number is 626-570-9622. We'll be back.

Finally getting a copy of Ultimate Kylie - is EMI deleting the title in the U.S.?! - makes me feel lucky, lucky, lucky indeed.

Whether I agree or disagree with Simon, his arguments are always fascinating, such as this one on P&J or his latest. Rip It Up and Start Again finally gets published domestically this month, hooray!

I turned to the bf about halfway through Hustle & Flow and asked him, "When did this turn into one of the year's best movies?" Yes, Terence Howard gives a supernova of a performance (and deserves his Oscar nod), but this film is much more. Each performance is nearly as note-perfect as acting gets, and the location filming and music (by Al Kapone and Three 6 Mafia, real Memphis hip hop) are smokin'. This is undoubtedly one of 2005's finest, and the energy of Craig Brewer's writing and direction (this is his second film) reminds me of John Singleton's debut, Boyz N The Hood - so it's not surprising that Singleton's one of the film's producers. Brewer's a talent to watch, and Hustle & Flow is a film to watch, and cherish.

Top 10 films of 2005:
01 Brokeback Mountain
02 Capote
03 Hustle & Flow
04 Mysterious Skin
05 A History of Violence
06 Crash
07 Murderball
08 Sin City
09 Proof
10 Batman Begins
close: good night, and good luck., Rent, The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe

Monday, February 06, 2006

Didn't watch a minute of the Super Bowl yesterday, except for what I saw passing through Best Buy, but we did tune in to Animal Planet's Puppy Bowl II. Simply enough, it's 3 hours of watching puppies play on a miniature football field. And this year, a new addition: the Kitty Halftime Show! I quit paying attention to the NFL once my Colts were done, no apologies. (And yes, I know: getting excited about the Kitty Halftime Show? I'm such a fag. No apologies for that, either.) (Oh, and would you believe you can purchase Puppy Bowl II on DVD? Right here, no joke.)

Thursday, February 02, 2006

Why oh why is Nelly's "Grillz" so f-ing peanut-butter-on-the-roof-of-your-mouth hooky? I heard it about 4 hours ago, have listened to plenty in the interim, and still can't get the damned thing out of my head.

[Vandross] understood as early as 1980 that happiness is but a glow, a frisson, an experience forged from equal parts memory and imagination.

Further proof, as if it's needed, that Alfred is a really, really lovely writer. And if you've not yet checked it out, I recommend you take a moment for Back and Forth, which seems to be taking shape as a very fine collaborative blog on the diaspora of soul, if I do say so myself (and granted, I'm a contributor, but still). (And yes, I'm perfectly aware how icky that last sentence sounds. But still...)

Wednesday, February 01, 2006

Simply put, it's a good sports movie. The basketball scenes are very well done and ring true, while the rest of it is basically what you'd expect from a Disney/Bruckheimer sports flick: struggles, uplift, family man beating the odds with his scrappy team, clich├ęs. Oh, and a national championship game that Pat Riley (who played in it) calls "the Emancipation Proclamation of 1966," because it essentially was - Texas Western (now UTEP) beat Adolph Rupp's lily-white Kentucky team by starting five black players and in the process changed college hoops forever. Don Haskins deserves to be in the Basketball Hall of Fame, and while Glory Road may be imperfect, I'm glad a film was made about him and his '65-66 Miners. If you're inclined towards this kind of movie, you'll enjoy it thoroughly, and you should take the time to see it on the big screen. I'll definitely pick this one up on DVD in a few months' time - you know there'll be some good bonus features on Haskins And did I mention how ridiculously hot Josh Lucas is, in his short-sleeved dress shirts? B

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