From Wilmington, DE to Wilmington, NC

I was on vacation last week in North Carolina.

One day I trekked into Wilmington, NC.

First stop was Flaming Amy's Burrito Barn.

This joint was awesome. Cute punk chicks with tattoos workin' the registers, nice salsa bar and burritos the size of an NFL football. Dee-lish!

Then I went over to Gravity Records, where I scored a bunch of Stereolab LPs! Woo hoo.

Strolled around downtown Wilmington some and stopped off at The Front Street Brewery, which I went to about 10 years ago on a road trip with Caterpillar.
Nice workout today

Had a very solid workout today. Did 30 minutes of cardio and had my heart rate up there.

This is in prep for a climb the stairs fundraiser I'm doing in Philly in two months.

2008 Climb the Stairs fundraiser

I sussed out the stair machine at the gym. I may take that sucker on soon.

Listening to some jazz on vinyl this afternoon and working on some super secret projects.

My new fave Web site is meebo.com.
One of my favorite records ever: Come - 'Eleven: Eleven'

Come - 'Eleven: Eleven'I picked up a copy of this on vinyl on my recent London trip.

Gawd, what a beatiful record. It is definitely one record that moves me every time I hear it.

Jay over at Agony Shorthand has done a much better job than I could ever do describing why this record is so damn beautiful:

THE MOST UNDERRATED RECORD OF THE 90s

Here's the song "Fast Piss Blues," which was the single from the album.

Come - Fast Piss Blues

And here's Come's cover of The Only Ones' "City of Fun," from a 1993 Peel Session:

Come - City of Fun

Come has long since broken up, and Thalia Zedek and Chris Brokaw have released a ton of solo records between the two of them.

Thalia and Chris even got back together in November 2007 to play a few Come songs.

Thalia Zedek and Chris Brokaw reunite Come at the Middle East
McG to climb 1,088 stairs for lung disease charity

On Saturday, February 16, 2008 I'll be participating in Climb the Tower, which is The American Lung Association's Stair Climb Event in Philadelphia.

I'll be walking up 50 flights (that's 1,088 stairs in all) to help raise raise awareness about lung health and money for research into lung disease.

You can support me by sponsoring me and making a donation.

Help McG by sponsoring his efforts to climb 1,088 stairs.

As a long time asthma sufferer (I still get regular treatments to this day), this seemed like a good way to challenge myself both mentally and physically.

I've already been hitting the gym and training!

My team is called Breathe for Becky.

The team captain is my pal Jen Katz, who lost her sister, Becky, to lung disease. She asked me to participate and be a part of this special event to honor the memory of her late sister.

'Harold & Kumar Escape from Guantanamo Bay' trailer awesome

At first glance, the first Harold & Kumar film looked it would suck out loud.

But it didn't.

In fact it was downright hilarious.

Now the trailer for the new Harold & Kumar film has arrived.

And it looks like the new H & K will be a riotous raunch fest.

Keep an eye out for a cameo by Howard Stern show writer, Richard Christy!

Trailer is R-rated, NSFW:

Control: Loved it, still love Joy Division

What can I say about the Ian Curtis/Joy Division biopic except it is awesome?!

The cast is stellar and the music performances are ace.

The storyline is compelling and while the outcome is predictable, it's a bittersweet experience getting to the end.



It's amazing how records such as "Unknown Pleasures" and "Closer" still sound so fresh and vital 25+ years after the fact.

And the cinematic story of Joy Division, "Control," is equally as stunning as the band's two legendary albums.
PSA: Please do not juggle bowling balls


http://view.break.com/393789 - Watch more free videos
Just another Tuesday

Things I did today:

  • Played vinyl records including Stars of the Lid, The Smiths

  • Rode a simulated bicycling exercise machine at the YMCA

  • Talked to my mom

  • Talked to my grandmom

  • Talked to my sister

  • Drank a Rockstar energy drink

  • Drove two hours in my car

  • Cracked my back

  • Played fetch with the dogs

  • ... and a bunch of other stuff too.
    Year of the Dog: Sad, touching, depressing

    I watched "Year of the Dog" this weekend. It was very much like my friend said it was: depressing.

    Still, it's a worthwhile film and Molly Shannon is downright awesome in it.

    This is a movie for everyone who likes animals more than they do people.

    The trailer doesn't do the film justice, so here's a quick clip:

    Rediscovering the magic of Low

    When I was out in L.A. earlier this year, I picked up Low's "Things We Lost in the Fire" on vinyl.

    It had been a while since I listened to Low. I quickly rediscovered the band's awesome vocal harmonies, gentle songs and overall brilliance.

    I got a box of records in the mail from Sub Pop today, including Low's "The Great Destroyer."

    Here's the video for the song, "Monkey," from that 2005 album.



    I know I'm not saying anything that everyone doesn't already know, but I felt compelled to give Low a shout out. What a special band, what special music.

    This is the kind of stuff that makes you think, "Yeah, you know what? Life IS good."
    McG's movie pick: Things We Lost in the Fire

    Really thought this movie was special.

    It's a bit melodramatic at times (I think that was the point), but the acting is top notch - especially Benecio Del Toro's performance.

    Here's the trailer:

    Emma Pollock interview on phillyBurbs.com

    Here's my interview with Emma Pollock!

    Emma plays tonight in Philly at the Trocadero, opening for The New Pornographers.

    “You know, after all these years,” says Pollock, “I’m really enjoying playing live at the moment. It’s a wonderful time."

    "It’s just such an exciting thing to be playing with The New Pornographers. They’re a band that I’m very fond of. Neko Case is one of my favorite female vocalists."


    phillyBurbs.com: Emma Pollock: (Just Like) Starting Over

    High Karate to reunite for Delaware gig at Mojo 13, December 22, 2007

    Legendary punk-pranksters High Karate will once again get together - this time for a one-off gig at Wilmington, Delaware's Mojo 13.

    The reuinted group features original members, the brothers Duvall (Al and Andy), along with longtime pal Rick Hodgson (Tube Dutch) filling in on bass.

    High Karate at Mojo 13

    Stupid QVC guy / Bad ladder sales guy

    Who is the bigger idiot? The guy in this video ...



    Or the guy in this video ...



    My money is on the guy in the second video.

    Greyhound Reach the Beach 2007 photos

    Here are my pics from the recent Greyhounds Reach the Beach gathering in Dewey Beach, Delaware.

    McG's 2007 GRTB pics

    Kelly and I spent a few days on holiday in Rehoboth Beach and got to see and pet plenty of greys!

    It turned out to be a nice time, even if we did miss a day because I had an allergic reaction to some antiobiotics.

    McG's 2007 GRTB pics on flickr
    Greyhounds Reach the Beach official site
    Nice Emma Pollock review, Philly show preview soon

    Here's a nice review of Emma Pollock's "Watch the Fireworks."

    indie-mp3.co.uk: Emma Pollock - Watch The Fireworks

    I intervied Emma the other day ... I'll have a show preview on pBurbs next week.

    Will definitely post a link!
    Van Halen: What a mess (with video goodness)

    Apparently I didn't miss much by skipping Van Halen's recent show in Philly.

    Check out Diamond Dave as he jumps up and down on an enormous microphone and waves to the audience like a beauty pageant contestant.



    And if you needed proof that Diamond Dave and the boys should have never made up, here's Van Halen on the opening night of their 2007 comeback tour.

    Something really ain't right with that pre-recorded keyboard part.

    Watch this and tell me this isn't awful.

    London pics online, tagged with descriptions

    I finally went through all of my London photos on flickr.

    They are now tagged and have witty commentary from yours truly.

    flickr: McG & Kelly's London Sept. 07 photo set
    Review: The Fab Faux at Keswick Theatre, October 13, 2007

    Here is my recap of The Fab Faux' recent Philly shows during which they performed "Revolver" and "Abbey Road."

    phillyBurbs.com: Fab Faux gets standing O at Keswick Theatre
    Uncle George Brennan

    Here's the obituary for my uncle, George Brennan.

    George's viewing, Funeral Mass and burial were today.

    It was a tough day, especially for my aunt and cousin.

    Like myself, George was an animal lover.

    George was a life member the Darby Fire Patrol #2.

    He was a member of the Colwyn Fire Company where he served as President for the last five years.

    George earned the Purple Heart for his service as a veteran of the U.S. Army during the Vietnam War.

    George's hospice care was provided by VITAS.

    As you may know, VITAS is one of the organizations that I am volunteer for as a pet therapy provider.
    This is what I want my house to be like

    I really love greyhounds. When they get together, they will roo together, which is a combination of whining, crying and barking. Believe it or not, this would be heaven to my ears.


    A smaller group will do the roo as well:

    Fab Faux at Keswick Theatre show preview

    I'm going to check out The Fab Faux tomorrow at the Keswick Theatre in Glenside, PA.

    Here's a show preview that I wrote for work.

    The Fab Faux keeps Beatles' 'Inner Light' alive

    Here's the Fab Faux performing John Lennon's "I Don't Want to Face It."



    While that's pretty cool, I don't think that video/song even touches their live stuff, such as "While My Guitar Gently Weeps."

    Awesome: 'Kurt Cobain About a Son' trailer

    Really looking forward to checking this film out.

    Video: Sal goofing on Gary

    Quick clip from Howard TV of Sal Governale messing with Gary.

    Love Gary's expression just before Sal comes into office.

    Cleveland's Screaming: Punk documentary clips

    The documentary film Cleveland's Screaming had its debut screening this weekend ... where else, in Cleveland!

    The trailers are pretty good: Some vintage VHS show footage and interviews. I kind of think the first one is better than the second one.

    Trailer #1
    Trailer #2

    But this clip really gave me a good idea of how the film really focuses in on the Cleveland scene and some of the earliest punk bands to come out that scene such as The Electric Eels.

    Agent Orange at Mojo 13, Wilmington, DE, 10/28/07

    I think I'm going to check this show out.

    Props to Mojo 13 for getting some out of town bands / big name bands / old school punk bands into Wilmington.

    Mojo 13 on MySpace
    Agent Orange on MySpace
    last.fm: Agent Orange at Mojo 13
    I think I really like The Besnard Lakes

    I've heard their song "Disaster" on Sirius 26 Left of Center several times now and each instance I think ... wow, that is _really_ exceptional.

    They kinda remind me of Galaxie 500 as well as Damon and Naomi, Sigur Ros and The Beach Boys with perhaps even a hint of Spacemen 3 or Spiritualized.

    I just ordered their album, "The Besnard Lakes are the Dark Horse" on vinyl.

    Here's their intriguing video for the song "For Agent 13" ...



    Of course, you will now check out The Besnard Lakes on MySpace
    McG's Los Angeles pictures now online

    Canters Los AngelesGot in from L.A. this morning around 8:00 a.m.

    Crashed out for a bit, then promptly put pics from the L.A. trip on Flickr, because ... apparently I have no life.

    Dave's Los Angeles pics, Sept. '07
    McG checking in from San Pedro, California

    Just finished up a two-day conference for work out in Santa Monica.

    Had an afternoon to kill, so I jetted down to San Pedro.

    No, not to chase the ghost of D. Boon or see where The Minutemen got their start.

    OK, maybe the latter.

    A kid wearing a faded Smiths t-shirt at Williams Book Store told me Pedro has been dead for a few years now.

    They had a copy of the awesome zine The Rise and Fall of the Harbor Area, which was FREE! It's got a cover story on George Hurley no less.

    I bopped across the street to Sacred Grounds coffee shop which is playing some really shitty smooth jazz right now.

    BUT, they offer free wi-fi and I had a slice of lemon bundt cake that was all homemade moist and what not.

    I'm sitting right where that P.A. speaker is in the picture above.

    I see that Toys That Kill is playing in L.A. tomorrow.

    Their latest record "Shanked" didn't knock my socks off the way "Control the Sun" did, but they definitely rock in a brilliant and awesome way.

    Next time I fly out this way, I HAVE to be able to extend the trip so I can catch some of these west coast bands I really dig.

    This California trip and the London vacation is taking back to the days of being on the road, seeking out the cool zine stores, record stores.

    I love being able to go up to someone who looks like they know the scene well and being able to find out exactly where to go and what is happening.
    Happy Birthday Nana B!

    It's my grandmother's birthday today.

    Unfortunately she's in the hospital dealing with some bronchitis (or possibly pneumonia).

    But she is in good spirits and seems like she'll be on the mend shortly.

    I spent some time with her yesterday in the ER and told her all about the London trip and held her hand.

    It's a shame I couldn't bring some of the dogs to the hospital to visit with her.

    Anyway, Happy Birthday Nana B!
    Back stateside

    Recovering from a hellish plane ride back from London on Friday.

    Bags were delayed, but showed up at 12:30 a.m. last night.

    Gonna grab some Indian food this afternoon, gather my thoughts and do some relaxing.

    That's one thing I didn't get to do much in London: just chill out.

    Lots and LOTS of walking, shopping and riding on Tube standing too close to other people.

    Got lots of records, books and stuff.

    I don't want to say 'I hope to write a tour diary" for fear that I won't get around to it, but I really do hope to do so in the next few days.

    I'm headed out to Santa Monica, CA for work later next week.

    London: Ready, set, go!

    I get into London Saturday morning.

    Time permitting, I may drop a few pics onto Flickr.

    Or, I may be too busy enjoying a much-needed vacation!

    I'm meeting up with Taylor Roark on Sunday. We've kept in touch ever since University of Delaware days.

    He's going to spend all day showing us around markets, record stores, etc.

    That night we're going to see Yo La Tengo score Jean Painlevé's legendary underwater films, live at the Royal Festival Hall.

    Here's Yo La Tengo doing "The Summer" from my fave album of theirs, "Fakebook."

    McG's movie pick: 'Mr. Brooks' surprisingly good thriller

    In my list of top actors, Kevin Costner is somewhere near the bottom of the list, categorized with other actors I'm totally indifferent about.

    Yet, I heard rave reviews for his performance in 'Mr. Brooks.'

    Along with help from the masterful William Hurt, Costner carries the film, transforming a potentially awful premise for a film into a taught, supsense-filled flick.

    Sure, actress Demi Moore brings absolutely nothing to the table and Dane Cook is like a third-generation clone of Mark Ruffalo.

    But the supporting actors do just enough to get by, while Costner carries the whole film.

    Usually a film such as 'Mr. Brooks' loses steam about 2/3 of the way through. Thanks to Costner and Hurt, the film manages to almost cross the finish line with integrity intact.
    Going to see Emma Pollock in London

    I'll be seeing Emma Pollock at a very special pre-record release party at The Social in London on Sept. 11!

    Her very first solo album ever, 'Watch the Fireworks,' comes out on Sept. 17 on 4AD Records.

    As you may know, Emma was previously in The Delagdos.

    And of course, Emma Pollock is on MySpace

    Here's the video for 'Adrenaline' from Emma's forthcoming record:

    VIDEO: Flying dogs in slow motion

    I really liked this video, although the techno music was a tad bit annoying.

    Not sure what it's for, not sure that it matters.

    Vitalic: Birds
    Random Amazon.com links

    I'm buying some stuff from Amazon and using their affiliate links, so I'm just pasting 'em here because I can ... and because I make a little cash back.

    Garmin SD UK card
    Garmin Street Pilot plug
    McG's White Stripes iMix

    Here's an iMix I made featuring the music of the White Stripes.

    It features 18 of their best songs with some commentary on each. You can download tracks individually or the iMix in it's entirety.

    This was created in conjunction with a White Stripes promotion for phillyBurbs.com.

    Enter the White Stripes Icky Thump USB Giveaway today.

    But hurry, contest ends on Sept. 7, 2007.

    White Stripes Icky Thump USB giveaway

    I'm lucky to have a job where I get to do fun stuff.

    I just launched a new White Stripes contest at phillyBurbs.com.

    ***

    We're giving away a pair of White Stripes Icky Thump USB flash drives.

    These things sell for $200!

    You have be registered at phillyburbs to enter, but that is a painless and quick process, I promise.

    I also created a White Stripes iMix with some of my fave WS songs.

    Enter today - you may be a lucky winner!
    London: Your suggestions?

    I'm going to London next month.

    If you have any recommendations on fun stuff to do, drop me a line.

    Mostly interested in good cheap food, record stores (vinyl), book stores, markets, museums, culture and maybe a decent band/venue to see some live music.

    Drop me a line if you have any suggestions.
    Pagans piece in Plain Dealer

    John Petkovic has a retrospective on Cleveland punkers, The Pagans in the Plain Dealer today.

    Well done John!
    It's official: Sinusitus, Bronchitis and Lameitis

    Only 7:00 p.m. on a Friday night and I'm getting ready for bed.

    Have to work early shift tomorrow (like 3:00 a.m.), so I'm having to bail on going to Mojo 13 to see Andy & Al Duvall, Tube Dutch, The Barons.

    But planning on seeing the old Wilmington crew on Sunday at John and Brenda's.

    I'm on a second round of antibiotics (Avelox) for sinusitus and bronchitis. The illness has been kickin my ass past two days.

    Last year I took Ketek, which is pretty much off the market after several people had liver failure after taking it. Nice.
    Like crap

    Hit Cowtown this morning and found a bunch of vinyl including 1st press of Suicidal Tendencies' debut album.

    Also found Horace Silver's 'Blowing the Blues Away,' Art Blakey's 'Ugetsu,' 1st Style Council album and some more crap that'll end up on eBay.

    Speaking of crap, that's what I feel like right about now.

    Having residual effects from sinus infection including chest congestion. I can't stop coughing. Getting on my own nerves.

    Evil Sean Landers went to see Built to Spill tonight at Chameleon Club in Lancaster, PA. I had to pass as it's still not a smoke-free scene there.

    Me=lame.
    Return of the Meat Puppets

    L.A. Times has a nice piece on the 'Pups, their recent live shows and their new record.

    The prodigal Meat Puppet returns
    The definition of cute overload


    Maui the dog



    Here's a pic of Maui, who is a Yorkie Poo.

    He's three months old and has already gone on his first pet therapy visit and did extremely well.

    Maui is seen here learning to poop in the backyard.

    My cousin Chris is famous

    His name is Chris Neary and he's an independent producer over at Chicago Public Radio.

    Today he's got an interesting piece on a small shop in Chicago’s Bronzeville neighborhood that makes custom prom dresses.

    Listen to/Read 'Designing a Night to Remember' on CPR

    Chris is actually trying to have a journalism career (unlike myself.)

    My biggest claim to fame as a journalist is a dubious one: Writing about American Idol for phillyBurbs.com.

    That said The Globe did quote one of my articles this year, so I must be doing SOMETHING right.

    Anyway, enough about me - nice job Chris!

    Dave and greyhound


    Dave and greyhound
    Originally uploaded by letitbe2000.

    Me and a grey at the Spring Dewey Beach greyhound event.

    White Stripes to play Wilmington, DE

    Holy crap ...

    The Grand Opera house has done it.

    Coming in July, The White Stripes.

    I'm sure getting tickets for this is going to be a bitch, but I'm gonna try to snag some.
    VIDEO: Mom scares gayness out of kid

    Watch this mom as she scares the gayness out of her kid.

    uselessjunk.com: Mom scares gayness out of kid
    McG's Spring 2007 vinyl & CD sale

    Hey folks, just got a bunch of great NEW vinyl in (and a few CDs too).

    Everything is SEALED and NEW with the exception of The Nomads which is an unsealed, but new import.

    E-mail to reserve and I'll send you total with shipping.
    Combine items to save on shipping.

    12"s:
    LCD Soundsystem - Yeah - $5.00
    LCD Soundsystem - Yr City's a Sucker - $5.00

    LPs:
    The 101ers (Joe Strummer) - Elgin Avenue Revisited - $10.75
    Apples in Stereo - New Magnetic Wonder - $12.75
    Arbouretum - Rites of Uncovering (Thrill Jockey ) - $9.75
    Chris Bell - I am the Cosmos (180 gram remaster) - $13.75
    Chemical Brothers - Push the Button (2 LPs) - $14.75
    Mission of Burma - The Obliterati (2 LPs, 180 gram) - $15.00
    The Nomads - Nomadic Dementia (2 LPs, heavy wax, import) - $24.00
    Thurston Moore - Psychic Hearts (2 LPs, with LP bonux trks) - $13.75
    The Pogues - Rum Sodomy & The Lash (Rhino, 180 gram) - $13.75
    Sparklehorse - Dreamt For Light Years ... (new 2006 LP) - $11.50
    The Warlocks - The Warlocks 12" EP (actually LP length) - $5.50
    Wire - 154 (180 gram remaster on 4 Men With Beards) - $12.00
    Wire - Pink Flag (180 gram remaster on 4 Men With Beards) - $12.00

    CDs:
    Cocteau Twins - Lullabies to Violaine Vol. 1 (2 CDs) - $12.00
    Cocteau Twins - Lullabies to Violaine Vol. 2 (2 CDs) - $12.00
    *special: buy both Cocteau Twins CDs for $22.00!*

    Sunno & Boris - Altar (2 CDs, ltd #1254/5000) - $15.00

    BOX SET CDs:
    Andy Partridge (XTC) - Fuzzy Warbles Collectors Box (9 CDs) - $60.00 (includes free media mail shipping & delivery confirmation - USA only for free shipping, Non-USA buyers e-mail for shipping info)

    ***And then I have some more stuff on eBay.

    Shipping:

    United States:
    Media Mail: $2.95
    Priority Mail: $5.75

    Canada and Mexico:
    Air Mail: $6.00

    All other countries:
    Air Mail: $12.50
    Del. fire companies to have oxygen masks for dogs and cats

    Within weeks, firefighters statewide may be able to say that, as Delaware is poised to become the first state to equip all fire companies with pet masks.

    delawareonline.com: Pets breathing easier
    Jesus Lizard DVD on the way

    That 1990s nostalgia/revival thing is already happenin'.

    The Jesus Lizard are set to release a live DVD of their October 1994 performance at the Rat in Boston.

    Also on the DVD are several songs culled from a CBGB performance.

    No word if/when the greatest American band will reform.
    Delgados/Emma Pollock

    One of my fave Delgados songs/videos is "Thirteen Gliding Principles"

    Can't wait for Emma Pollock's debut album.

    Hope it comes out on vinyl.
    Remembering Bob Varnberg

    Here's my piece on Bob Varnberg of Greyhound Adoptions of Florida, who passed away last month.

    A few years back, I interviewed his wife, Marilyn, for a piece I wrote for Delaware Today about the Greyhounds Reach the Beach, held annually in Dewey.

    ahome4greys.org
    Can't think of a good prank

    ... for April Fool's day. Oh well.

    Farmer's Market was kind of a bust this weekend. Didn't find any vinyl, although I did get a bunch of jazz CDs including:

    Miles Davis - Live at the Plugged Nickel, Bags' Groove, Workin'
    Art Tatum - Standards
    Lou Donaldson - The Natural Soul, Blues Walk, Lush Life
    Art Blakey - A Day With Art Blakey 1961
    Oscar Peterson - The Trio, We Get Requests
    Bud Powell - In Paris
    Sonny Rollins - Freedom Suite

    My pal Dean, who is an old school jazz musician, will dig checking these out. Dean is in one of the nursing homes that I do pet therapy at. He's one of the coolest old dudes that I've met in a while.

    I stopped by with a bunch of records to listen to the other day, but he was expecting visitors, so we didn't get to chill.

    Speaking of old pals, Sarah found me on MySpace. Cool punker chick from '80s DE punk scene.

    Watched Arabesque last night.

    It's directed by Stanley Donen, who did the great film, "Two For the Road."

    Cleaning up the house today (a.k.a. throwing away a bunch of crap).

    Sirius finally launched its punk channel today!

    Emergency room visit

    Spent the better part of last night at St. Francis' ER. Everyone and everything is fine.

    They've totally re-done the place but that didn't stop someone from taking a massive diarrhea dump in the check-in area. Was made worse by someone spraying Lysol. Ew.

    Worked early shift this a.m. and just listening to some records right now. Now playing: Death of Samantha - "Strungout on Jargon."

    I love digging up old Homestead Records releases. I think that the bulk of the catalog is OOP makes the label's lore and legend that more alluring.

    Or not.

    New season of Doctor Who starts next week. And yes, that does make me happy. Still think Torchwood is better than the new Who, but I can do without the gay sci-fi angle.
    Coasting along

    Blatant plug:
    Do you like Lindsey Buckingham and/or Fleetwood Mac? Check out this profile that my pal PB wrote up.
    The essential works of Fleetwood Mac and Lindsey Buckingham

    McG on TV:
    American Idol crap:
    Recap of Tuesday's top 11: No wardrobe malfunction

    Top 5 reasons that girl was crying

    Stephanie Edwards gone … so what?

    More TV:
    Here's my first ever recap of Dancing With the Stars

    Tunes:
    Got some really nice LPs from Tequila Sunrise this week including:
    -Tracey Thorn's 1st solo LP
    -Nick Drake "Made to Love Magic" LP
    -LSD March "Empty Rubious Red" LP
    -Tales from the Australian Underground Vol. 1 (2CDs)

    Movies:
    I watched 'Driving Lessons' last night. Took a while to grow on me, but once it kicked in, I enjoyed it. Nice old lady/young kid film with coming of age twist.

    My DVD of the week has to be 'Harsh Times,' a movie that SOOOOO kicked my ass. Christian Bale is one bad-ass mofo.
    Weakend wrap up

    This is some weekend I'm having. Fell asleep at 7:00 p.m. on Friday night.

    Yesterday I saw my chiropractor/oesteopath and had work done on my sinuses, etc. He said my immune system was out of whack and my lymph nodes were swollen. No surprises there. I go back in two weeks.

    Watched a semi-crappy movie last night, "It's All About Love" and just minutes before the end, the DVD crapped out and wouldn't play.

    Reminds me of the time I saw "Sling Blade" in the theater and the projector bulb burned out five minutes before end of movie.

    Then one of the movie "ushers" blurted out the ending, so no one would be wondering what happened.

    Was watching "48 Hours" with Kelly last night and she fell asleep half way through. Zzzzzzzzzzzzzzz...
    More vinyl mayhem

    Yesterday was a great day for flea marketing in March.

    Hit the FM didn't find much - just two LPs by The Fugs on ESP Disk. The records will clean up OK with pass through the VPI record cleaning machine, but the jackets are severely damaged. Hard to pass up for a buck though.

    Traded in some clutter from the attic over at Tequila Sunrise and was able to get Joy Division's Peel Sessions LP and the reissue of PIL's Metal Box.

    While I was up that way in Philly, I went by the Record Exchange. Man, I remember when that store used to be great. I found a couple of things including Lee Morgan's "Caramba" and Sonny Stitt's "Stitt Plays Bird."

    The Record Exchange is now full of CDs and while there is some interesting vinyl there, it's a fraction of what it used to be in terms of a decent record store.

    I know, I'm getting all geeked up about record stores. What can I tell you?

    Went to Siren Records in Doylestown to catch a live set by The Photon Band. My pal Pat Berkery was sitting in on drums with them. They played a decent batch of songs including a couple of new ones that were really hot.

    By the way, in case you haven't heard, PB is now working with me once again. He's a content editor over at phillyBurbs.com. He sits a few desks away from me and yes, hilarity does ensue.

    Found a few LPs at Siren as well. The Delgados' "Hate," Tortoise's "All Around You" and the Volcano Suns' "All Night Lotus Party."

    The vinyl selection at Siren is fairly good. They had a lot of the contemporary punk stuff hyped by MRR (Government Warning, Feral Ward stuff, Career Suicide, Lemuria, etc.) and a few nice jazz lps.

    Some of the prices on their rock stuff was hilarious though. $10 and $15 on some of the most common rock stuff you see at every flea market and garage sale. Still, it's worth a trip every now and then I suppose.
    SST Records reissues on the way?

    Saw a cryptic one-line mention in Mojo (the one with Ian Curtis on the cover) that some reissues were scheduled from SST Records.

    No word on which artists and/or releases this would include.

    Does this mean that we'll finally see a legit reissue of the Black Flag 1982 demos as a bonus disc to "My War?" One can only hope.

    Greg Ginn must be sitting on some pretty killer Blag Flag studio outtakes and/or live tracks.

    Meanwhile you can still buy a Black Flag skateboard for $55 at the SST Records Superstore.

    SSTSUPERSTORE.COM: Black Flag skateboard
    Joy Division LPs & reissues

    I picked up Joy Division's "Unknown Pleasures" and "Closer" on vinyl this week.

    Thanks to Anthony at Tequila Sunrise Records for a good deal on those.

    I read in Mojo that the above mentioned records along with "Still" are to be re-issued on CD later this year, each with a bonus live disc.

    No word on whether any of the bands demos or stray tracks not on the "Heart and Soul" box set will surface.

    Artificial Peace discography?

    I'm listening to this Artificial Peace discography that I downloaded a few months ago. Wow, it's great!

    Can't even remember how I came across it. Sounds like it's a CD rip.

    Does anyone know where to get a hold of this on CD or vinyl?! Or what the deal is with this release?

    Articial Peace on MySpace.com
    New Kylesa album is great

    Wow. I picked up the new Kylesa album, “Time Will Fuse Its Worth” a few weeks ago.

    Took me a few spins to get into it, but I’m digging it. I’m usually not a big fan of the two-drummer genre, but the addition has been a positive one for Kylesa.

    I really dig the way Kylesa blends metal, grind and punk with the focus on making loud and heavy music. Loads of time changes and I hear some psychedelic guitar sounds in there as well.

    One of the best songs from the album, “Where the Horizon Unfolds” has a video, which you can check out here:

    Kabobs and vinyl

    I was in Philly over the weekend.

    My pal Shash took me to a great restaurant, Kabobeesh. It’s an authentic middle eastern food joint with a blend of Afghan, Pakistani, Turkish, Indian, Iranian and Bengali foods.

    I had the Chicken Resham Kabob, which is spiced with their house seasoning. It came with a side of veggies and the biggest piece of naan I’ve ever laid eyes on. Price is right too – about $10 per person for an overly generous portion. I’m a fan!

    I stopped by Tequila Sunrise records to trade in some vinyl I had collecting dust in the attic. Got a nice $25 store credit, which I put towards an original pressing of Miles Davis’ “Bitches Brew.” Also picked up Miles’ “Get Up With It” on vinyl as well as The Urinals’ “Negative Capability … Check it Out” on CD.

    I hadn’t traded in vinyl in quite some time, as usually I can eBay the stuff. But this was a lot of records that didn’t sell on eBay, but wasn’t exactly dollar-a-record fare either. I really like the clean design and sparse layout of Tequila Sunrise. It reminds me of the Philadelphia Record Exchange during its glory days.

    Only thing Tequila Sunrise could use is a rack for select new releases, but other than that, it’s a great store with a small, but quality stock of new and used vintage punk, electronic, avant, jazz and super weird out-there music. I’ll be headed back there soon.

    UPDATE: Heard back from Anthony at Tequila Sunrise with the following info:

    "i still have to build more record bins, which will tighten the place up a
    bit, but should enable me to have a proper new arrivals section/selection.

    i try to direct customers to check the my space updates for new arrivals when possible (which usually go out thursday night/friday morning, but also on tuesdays mornings as of late) before coming in. i try to give a pretty good run down of new titles in stock with descriptions, albeit terse in
    many cases, but i've been expanding them."

    Nice!
    Trailer: Keeping the Peace

    You'll see a lot of familiar Delaware faces and locations in the movie trailer for Keeping the Peace.

    The film chronicles Michael Berg's run for Congress in 2006. I'm proud to say I voted for Berg.

    Michael Berg's son, Nick Berg, was beheaded in Iraq in retaliation for prison abuses carried out by U.S. soldiers.

    McG's pet therapy on hiatus

    I'm currently taking a break from doing pet therapy at Tilton Terrace and Hillside in Wilmington.

    After a year, I felt like I needed a break. Plus I'll be pulling my hair out until the end of May, writing about American Idol.

    Here's a nice article about the Faithful Friends 'Just Fur You' pet therapy program that I participate in along with Jazz, Augie, Kitty and of course, Kelly.

    delawareonline.com: Meet Leo, the therapy dog
    Beautiful day

    The weather in Wilmington, Delaware was inexplicably beautiful today - 70 degrees and sunny.

    Which is weird since it's January and Winter!

    Hit the Farmer's Market this morning and found the following jazz LPs:

    Miles Davis - On the Corner
    Sonny Stitt - Sonny's Blues
    Coleman Hawkins - The Hawk Swings
    Eddie Harris - The Electrifying Eddie Harris

    Spent the rest of the afternoon working on a Web site for a friend.

    There's a microwave pizza with my name on it in the freezer.

    Gonna watch a movie tonight with Kelly - probably "Children of Men."
    McG's TV pick: Torchwood

    I'm really digging the BBC's Torchwood.

    The final episode aired this weekend. Right now I'm up to episode eight.

    I usually am "feh" about science fiction shows, but this Doctor Who spinoff is really kickass.

    The BBC America and/or SciFi channel will eventually get around to airing it here in the U.S...

    Of course if you've seen Torchwood, you know I'm stating the obvious...