Posts tagged “They Might Be Giants”

Friday, 1 May 2015

“Of the Month” May 2015

TV Show of the Month:

Hot-damn, this is how you do Daredevil. This show is dark. Dark. Horrible things happen to good people. Routinely. The heroes are mostly powerless, and lose more than they win (for the most part). The villain is a complex, developed character. Lies, betrayals, good ol’ Catholic guilt, and bloody, bloody beatings. All the performances are just spot-on, especially Vincent D’Onofrio as Wilson Fisk, AKA Kingpin. He’s like a gigantic tea kettle that is constantly in danger of boiling over, but at the same time is genuinely shy and uncomfortable around other people, and especially in public. Even though at times it is a grueling experience, it is an amazing show.

Album of the Month:

They Might Be Giants: Glean

They Might Be Giants have a new non-children’s album! And it’s very strong. The worst songs on this album drop only to the level of “average TMBG songs,” which still put them light-years ahead of most any other songs in existence. And the best songs are absolutely stellar. My favorite is “End of the Rope,” which has a very cool, almost-spy vibe to it and a wonderful lyric cadence. Also fantastic are “Madam, I Challenge You to A Duel” and “Hate the Villanelle” (which is actually a 100% correct villanelle, a very strict poetic form). But really all 15 songs are good stuff.

Documentary of the Month:
Atari: Game Over

A fascinating urban legend among nerdy circles is the tragic tale of the E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial video game for the Atari 2600. A huge bomb, it was critically and commercially panned, and Atari was stuck with warehouses full of unsold cartridges. Legend says they were unceremoniously buried in a landfill in New Mexico. The whole tale is symbolic of the home video game crash of the early 1980s, which wouldn’t be rescued until the NES hit the scene. This documentary is part historical—tracing the rise-and-fall of Atari and the 2600’s place in nerd history, as well as the personal history of the programmer who actually created the E.T. video game—and part mystery. Did this landfill event actually happen? Can it be found? There is a surprising amount of build-up and suspense!

Categories: Of the Month.

Tuesday, 10 June 2014

“Of the Month” June 2014

I know, I know, it’s already the 10th of the month and I’m just NOW doing my “Of the Month” choices. Well, y’know, I’ve been busy with a baby. And Mario Kart. And seeing movies. Y’know. Anyhoo, here we go:

Album of the Month:
Dark Comedy by Open Mike Eagle Dark Comedy by Open Mike Eagle
This is another one of the reasons why my “Of the Month” choices are so late this month: I was waiting for this album to drop. This is a frikkin’ incredible album, a tour-de-force of Mike’s intellect and wit, with some of the best production and beats behind him of any of his albums. Nerd references abound, and the comedy forms like a doorway of accessibility that leads you down a rabbit hole to some legit darkness in the state of the world. I think maybe I’ll have to write a full article about this album (you know, in all of my spare time) to do it justice. Pretty durned spectacular.

Here’s one of my favorite tracks, featuring comedian Hannibal Buress:

Video Game of the Month:
Mario Kart 8 Mario Kart 8
It’s another Mario Kart. You do know that the Mario Kart series of games is my all-time favorite series of games, just barely beating out classic Mega Man and the Legend of Zelda games, right? Well, this one is no different. It’s got some added items and features, like the whole anti-gravity feature (that reminded me a bit of F-Zero X), and there are some interesting changes like the fact that you can’t “chamber” an item by holding it behind you and then pick up another item. Nope, you can only ever hold one item at a time (unless the item itself is multiple, like triple-shells). Also the coin system from the very first Mario Kart makes a fascinating return! But really the star of this Mario Kart is the gorgeous HD visuals. If you ever get the chance to watch someone else play (or watch a video of gameplay), just look at all the stuff going on in the backgrounds and on the periphery of the action. It’s just stunning.

And speaking of gameplay videos, this Mario Kart lets you upload highlight reels to YouTube. Uh-oh, you’re all in trouble now. Here’s me as Baby Rosalina kicking some ass:

Music Video of the Month:
Tesla by They Might be Giants Tesla by They Might be Giants
A rather gentle and unassuming song from TMBG about Tesla and his many contributions to the world has been taken by designer Paul Sahre (a frequent collaborator TMBG’s) and made not into just one video, but NINE videos. Sahre made 8 remixes of the song, then created a video for each of them plus the original song. They’re all strung together into over 20 minutes of glorious, hypnotic, funny, grainy, black-and-white goodness. Don’t believe me? Silly fools! Just watch for yourself:

Categories: Of the Month.

Tuesday, 18 February 2014

Nocando, Open Mike Eagle, Milo, and Busdriver of the Hellfyre Club were at The Crocodile Last Night!

And so was I!

Hellfyre burns up the Crocodile.

Hellfyre burns up the Crocodile.

The Hellfyre Club represents pretty much the best in rap today. I always try to see them whenever they’re in town, so it was especially nice to have four of them in one show for efficiency!

My friends Cassie and Sandy were there before the show, and we all hung out with Open Mike Eagle and ate pizza and geeked out about Netflix shows. Sandy made home-cookies for the Club, even! Mike left to go get prepped, and we three wandered to the stage area where we found Jason “Three Ninjas” Brunet.

The show started out with Nocando:

Nocando can actually do raps.

Nocando can actually do raps.

Then came my pal Open Mike Eagle, who had a very special guest guarding his equipment setup:

The Ice King watches over us all...

The Ice King watches over us all…

Since this is me, I managed to make an animated .GIF of Mike doing his thang:

Open Mike Eagle Animated.

Open Mike Eagle Animated.

It was a great set. After it he and I talked about his fandom of They Might Be Giants (I suggested he could do an entire set of just songs that reference/quote TMBG songs).

After Mike came Milo:

Milo was all highs and no lows.

Milo was all highs and no lows.

I’d never seen Milo before, and had only ever heard songs where he was one among many peformers, never his solo stuff. I was terrifically impressed! That was some good stuff.

And finally came the meistro Busdriver:

Busdriver likes to ushnu.

Busdriver likes to ushnu.

I managed to capture two animated .GIFs of him:

An unusually calm Busdriver.

An unusually calm Busdriver.

In the driver we trust.

Get on the bus! In the driver we trust.

And then once everybody had gone solo, all four of ’em got on stage together for another set of songs!

It was funtimes. Why weren’t you there? Oh, yeah, prolly ’cause it was on a Monday night, and I didn’t get home until almost 2:00 in the morning and had to get up at about 5:30 to get baby to her Grandparents and then get to work on time. Y’know. I’m feelin’ the sleeps today, but I tells ya, it was worth it.

Categories: Concerts/Shows, Pictures.

Friday, 13 September 2013

They Might Be Giants: “You’re On Fire” Official Video

They Might Be Giants recently released a rather amusing video for their song “You’re On Fire” from their latest alblum, Nanobots. YE SHOULDST WATCH IT!

The video stars Lauren Lapkus from that “Orange Is The New Black” show, which I haven’t watched but I know many of you have.

Categories: Music, Videos.

Wednesday, 19 June 2013

My Famous Friends: Mike Eagle and TMBG Together!

My pal Open Mike Eagle has never made it a secret that one of his biggest influences is also my favorite all-time band, They Might Be Giants.

He has quoted them in a few of his own songs, and recently included a section from the obscure TMBG track “Weep Day” in a performance, which you can see here:

Well, this morning TMBG took notice!

That’s pretty awexome (so awesome it has an x in it). TMBG retweeted me once last month (when I tweeted about them and Joss Whedon being on the same episode of Jimmy Fallon’s show) and it ’bout gave me a heart attack:

So it’s great to see them acknowledging the Open Mike Eagle love. Well-deserved accolades for Mr. Eagle.

Categories: My Famous Friends.

Monday, 15 April 2013

“Of the Month” April 2013

Link of the Month:
My Birthday Wish List!
My birthday is next month. Just sayin’. Y’know. *Cough*

Album of the Month:
Nanobots Nanobots by They Might Be Giants
Still as prolific as ever, They Might Be Giants have put out another “adult” album. This one has one of the strongest starts of any album; the series of the first nine songs is absolutely top-notch. That might seem like a lot of songs; many albums only have 10-12 songs total. This is They Might Be Giants, though, so there are actually about 25 songs on the album. The middle section flounders a bit, with a series of short songs that aren’t quite self-contained, but aren’t quite in the “Fingertips” style. The final stretch is much stronger, with songs like “Replicants” and “Icky.” It’s one of the better “adult” efforts by TMBG in the 21st Century.

Movie of the Month:
Everything or Nothing Everything or Nothing: The Untold Story of James Bond
A fascinating documentary that chronicles the behind-the-scenes, making-of antics of the James Bond series, including Ian Fleming himself, Cubby Broccoli and Harry Saltzman, the undying specter of Kevin McClory, George Lazenby’s insane meltdown, the bizarre twist that kept Pierce Brosnan from becoming Bond for almost 10 years, and much more. This documentary has a trick of inserting footage from the Bond films when talking about real-world events. For example, when talking about the lawyers getting involved in the Broccoli/Saltzman turmoil it intercuts with Bond footage of various boardroom meetings and people passing papers around. It’s a very clever technique. I knew most of the information contained in this documentary already, but seeing it all in one place in chronological order is a treat. Plus, this has perhaps the greatest opening of any Bond movie ever: the six-gun sniper shot. So badass. You’ll see.

Categories: Of the Month.

Thursday, 10 November 2011

@JonathanCoulton and @TMBG at @ShowboxSEA SoDo

Is the title of this post a little much? Have I been on twitter a bit too often?

Anyhoo, last night my wife and I went with @Jayseman and the Unintentional Housewife to Showbox SoDo to see a musical-type performance show.

The opener was Mr. Jonathan Coulton!

JoCo at ShoBo SoDo

JoCo at ShoBo SoDo

He brought out a special guest for the song “Nemeses” — Mr. John Roderick!

JoRo joins JoCo at ShoBo SoDo

JoRo joins JoCo at ShoBo SoDo

Then after they were done out came Mr. John Linnell and Mr. John Flansburgh!

JoLo & JoFo followed JoCo & JoRo at ShoBo SoDo

JoLo & JoFo followed JoCo & JoRo at ShoBo SoDo

It was a very good show and a very fun everning! Of particular entertainment were an epic version of “Ana Ng” (which I don’t think I’ve seen them do live in a decade), and the Avatars of They performing “Spoiler Alert.” They did a very good job of mixing the olde and the newe in their set.

We hadn’t actually had a chance to go see They for many, many years, so it was great to have They back (on the other hand I think I’ve seen JoCo four or five times in the last couple of years—not that I’m complaining).

Categories: Concerts/Shows.