May 31, 2008
There’s no better antidote for a boring Saturday afternoon than YouTube. One of my favorite ways to kill time is watching news and sportscaster bloopers. There’s something innately satisfying about watching someone who takes him or herself too seriously make a gaff, often perverted, that serves as a subliminal peek into the skeletons in their closet.
Here are a few of my favorites:
May 30, 2008
So I started riding a bike. Not for exercise, not for fun, only to get from point A to point B faster than my feet would take me. Not to sound simple, but it definitely saves me a ton of time on my commutes around the area, and I probably wouldn’t be motivated to move otherwise. Sadly, though, my set of wheels is a girl’s Trek Mountain bike, but it does have a nice pair of Rock Shox.
Anyways, returning to my point of this post. As I was pedaling, I started thinking to myself “What is it about bike riding that makes me feel like a kid?” Because, honestly, when I hop on a road bike, mountain bike, beach cruiser, etc. I instantly transform into the ten year old kid with scrapped knees and dirtied clothes. I remember my little red bike, riding without training wheels for the first time, and going off my first bike ramp. Other people in the streets reciprocate my feeling, because I can definitely see my younger self reflected in their eyes.
So the next time I wake up and think “Damn, I’m getting old,” I’ll hop on a bike and cruise back to childhood.
May 29, 2008
Looks like Beck will be rush-releasing his new Danger Mouse produced LP Modern Guilt, a la Racounteurs and Nine Inch Nails. Tricky, tricky. No word yet on an expected release date, but Beck has posted a stream of a new track, “Chemtrails,” on his website. The song has a 60s psychedelic vibe and sounds like it would be at home on Caribou’s Andorra. Sunshine and flowers not included.
Stream the track HERE. Just move your mouse over the top right hand corner of the page to reveal the virtual boombox.
May 28, 2008
This past weekend, I caught an advance listen of Ratatat’s forthcoming LP3 with our buddies over at We Kure Burns. Needless to say I was amped and I already love the record. Dudes really broadened their scope, incorporating Latin, reggae and even Bollywood influences. I also can’t wait to catch them on tour this summer.
For now, here’s the new video for “Mirando,” which uses imagery from Predator. Dope.
May 26, 2008
It’s been a goal of mine to branch out from the same handful of bars I frequent and try out some new digs. With this intrepid spirit, a group of us stopped into The Rusty Knot on Saturday. Located at 11th St. and the West Side Highway, The Rusty Knot was opened earlier this spring by Ken Friedman, of Spotted Pig fame and has all the makings of a hangout for upscale hipsters. While the crowd on Saturday was largely in line with that description, the prices certainly weren’t. My friends and I were giddily crushing $4 Bud cans all night. The menu even boasts pretzel dogs, which we never worked up the courage to try.
Even more than the menu, the best part of the bar is its decor. Seemingly fashioned after a New England dive bar, The Rusty Knot is festooned with 70s-style wood panel walls, neon beer signs, a fish tank and nautical themed knickknacks hung randomly about. I honestly felt like I was in the basement on a 70s sitcom. While the area around the bar was crowded and tough to navigate, the patrons were in good spirits and the bartenders friendly.
When our group finally commandeered some chairs by the fish tank, we were content and could have sat there for hours. But as the thermostat crept near eighty and a creepy John Malkovich look-alike kept circling past, we decided it was time to leave. Regardless, I will definitely make the trip back to The Rusty Knot, and next time might even try the pretzel dog.
May 25, 2008
A couple buddies and I finally made the trip uptown to check out Jeff Koons on the Roof, an installation of sculptures by the renowned artist at the Iris and B. Gerald Center Roof Garden on top of the Met. We couldn’t have chosen a more picturesque spring day and as expected, the views of Central Park and the skyline were awe-inspiring.
Koons’ sculptures themselves were impressive. Each of the three on display (Balloon Dog, Sacred Heart and Coloring Book) is crafted out of stainless steel and coated with cool reflective paint. My favorite of the three was Balloon Dog, an enormous party favor colored tennis ball green. While the play of sunlight and reflection of the surroundings was a nice effect, I thought the scale of the sculptures was dwarfed by the city skyline. The exhibit may have been even more impressive in an atrium of sorts. And if you go, don’t waste your time trying to get a drink, the line is nutty. Overall, I definitely recommend checking out the exhibit, so long as you can get over your guilt for not paying the “suggested” donation.
The sculptures are on display through October 26. More details HERE.
May 25, 2008
One of my favorite hip hop records of all-time is Mobb Deep’s The Infamous. Released in 1995, the album helped put the East Coast back on the map at a time when Snoop, Dre and Death Row were stealing the spotlight. Showcasing dark, gritty beats and haunting soul samples, The Infamous sounds like it was recorded in a dim project hallway in Queensbridge. The rugged production is punctuated by Havoc and Prodigy’s trademark violent lyrics. To put it bluntly, The Infamous is a classic.
Here are videos for three of my favorites on the record, “Survival of the Fittest,” “Give Up the Goods” and “Shook Ones Pt. 2.”
“Survival of the Fittest”:
“Give Up the Goods”:
“Shook Ones Pt. 2”: