Sunday, September 30, 2012
Saturday, September 29, 2012
Music Review by Joseph Timmons, Xombiewoof.Com Magazine
Album: Adventures of Hi-Fi in Space / Adventures of Lo-Fi in Space
Daniel Fern: Vox, Guitars
Bill Fitzgerald: Bass, Vox
Mike 'Mikopolis' Morales: Drums, Percussion
Engineered & Mixed by Dan Kramer
Produced by: Dan Kramer for American Glorious Productions
Mastered by: Mark Alan Miller
It is unusual that I get an album that redefines my thoughts on experimental soundscapes, usually, unless an artist or group is very talented or experienced, it sounds much like garbled nonsense or the cracking of pipes. I am very pleased to announce that I have been made into a believer, and that a band can wear more than one hat at a time. I know this may sound cliché, but this group has bridged the barriers of theory and have created a true variant of sound that is timeless yet also has direct connection to their influences.
ENDAND, a group straight out of Brooklyn has a tonal texture that sound like a grouping of decades in music history, although they have been billed as a “post-modern punk” I would say that their influences span from 60’s and 70’ sounds, like Pink Floyd and Frank Zappa through the 80’s and 90’s like The Screaming Trees, Mudhoney and grunge contemporaries through to today’s hard sounds of Soundgarden and mixed music such as Gorillaz and Moby. I cannot pin-point their sound, which is actually a great moment in my career as a music review writer; they keep me guessing, and very entertained.
With songs that cross over and blend in styling that I have yet to find a term to define, their music is direct, poignant and in your ears, with driving beats and rhythms, I find myself drawn in, the lyrics are also well-defined and everything is well mixed and produced, no over sampling or muddy messes of “sludge”, which is music that is so dull it has to be special effected out of existence. The album is actually a dual album – “Adventures of Hi-Fi in Space” sounds to be tracks that are or more modern composure, where as “Adventures of Lo-Fi in Space” are the “Old Vanguard” sounds, reminiscent or the psychedelic era of the 60’s / 70’s, like the message music can bring, their compositions span both time and space, a unique vision in the music creativity and teasing the senses.
Adventures of Hi-Fi and Lo-Fi in Space is a fitting title, the album is a rollercoaster of musical styling and emotion. I had an opportunity to do a phone interview, and found that they don’t take themselves too seriously, no delusions of grandeur or stardust daydream, just real musicians making real music and focusing on the quality of what they do. All experienced musicians with diverse backgrounds, they make it work effortlessly, making their “mastery” sound all too easy, which as a musician myself, is far from the truth.
I look forward to the day I can see them live, I am sure they make their stage presence stand out on its own merits as well as the precision of their playing.
Our Apologies: This Review was previously Published July / August 2012 – but was removed from the Server during a technical audit and was not replaced. It has been re-published in it’s entirety.
Tuesday, September 18, 2012
Devyn Rose Releases "Pieces" Music Video Trailer!
Devyn Rose recently released her new single “Pieces” in preparation for the first of three installments of her EP series, "I AM DEVYN ROSE". Check out the music video trailer; the official music video is set to be released soon!
Devyn plans to release a series of 3 song EPs in three installments starting with the digital EP, "I AM DEVYN ROSE: D.E.V.Y.N.", which features the lead single “Pieces”, and is due to be released in October, with the second and third installments arriving in November and December.
Saturday, September 15, 2012
A New Album that Reveals the Introspective Extravert
Street Date – September 18th, 2012 : Available for pre order at http://www.benfolds.com and Amazon.Com
Review by Joseph Timmons – Xombiewoof.com Magazine
Five Stars : vvvvv
Ben Folds Five has enjoyed notoriety with many successful albums and have been welcomed into the hearts of their fans for a wide number of reasons, one of which is they have actual talent and vision in their music's composition and lyrical content. Ben Folds Five is not to be taken for granted as “sing – song” or “folksy”, they have a message that is felt within. Ben Folds Five, described by some as an alternative rock trio, formed in 1993 ,the group is Ben Folds, Robert Sledge, and Darren Jessee. The group achieved mainstream success in the alternative, indie and pop music scenes. This trio of contemplative genius have come together to put forth and deliver their first album in several years, proving that perfection comes with time and tenacity. Some would think that so many years apart and out of the studio would cause an inability to work together and create the harmonies and pure sound that has been the trademark of Ben Fold Five’s success, yet all that time off hasn't detracted from quirky, and sometimes geeky appeal of the band's piano-driven music.
Ben Folds Five came together to record three new studio tracks for The Best Imitation Of Myself: A Retrospective, a career-spanning Ben Folds anthology on Columbia/Legacy Records. With the band’s magic rekindled while making the new tracks, Ben Folds Five gave its first concert in more than a decade to a spellbound audience at New York’s Mountain Jam Festival on June 2, 2012. Now, Ben Folds Five returns with The Sound Of The Life Of The Mind, the group’s first album of new music in 13 years. First single from the album, which will be the first video from Ben Folds Five in just as many years is “Do It Anyway”, the band kicked off a U.S. tour September 13th 2012 and will be appearing nation wide to support this album.
Ben Fold Five’s new album, The Sound of the Life of the Mind, is an album that has been a long time coming, a continuation of their ability to captivate the listener into a world full of brightness and emotion.
The compositions, acoustic and ambient in it’s base, resonate and linger in the thoughts. Bouncy and playful, the music keeps in perfect time with lyrics that reach out and find a place in ones life. I listened to each track and found that they had a kindred connection to things I have and still experience in my life, and even with some moments when language can be surprising and unlike an expected thought of what is to come next, each lyric is meant to be there, perfectly placed and enrobed in a sweet melody that makes it a memory all it’s own.
I know, I gush, but my experiences with music have shown me that one can never take an artist for granted, their past measures an either drive them forward or hold them back, but with Ben Folds Five, The Sound of the Life of the Mind propels them into a place where only few can be at any given moment, and that place is in the perfect moment of time.
My only complaint is that the album is too short, even with 9 solid tracks that fill this album with ambient pleasure, it may leave one wishing for a 10th track , so in lieu of this elusive 10th track, I found their Live Stream Video where they discuss what is up with Ben Folds Five, their new album and more, enjoy it, and then go Buy The Album - The Sound of the Life of the Mind , which is available in CD, Vinyl and Digital Download, as well as other Albums by Ben Folds Five.
For tour dates and more visit http://www.benfolds.com
Friday, September 14, 2012
George Lopez: It’s Not Me, It’s You!
Comedy Central Records, recorded during his HBO Live Comedy Special on July 14th, 2012
Street Release Date September 25th, 2012.
Review by Joseph Timmons, Xombiewoof Magazine
As a comedic entertainer and performer, few men have enjoyed the notoriety and long endured public appreciation as George Lopez, a truly talented and gifted man of the stage and screen who has had hit after hit, his own television show and is a beloved voice actor from many children’s shows and movies. George Lopez has seen and done it all, a personality that is the voice of the people, saying what we would love to say and doing on stage what we only dream of doing.
George has done it again with his most recent offering “It’s Not Me, It’s You”, recorded during his most recent live performance special on HBO and out on September 25th of 2012 on Comedy Central Records. George takes no prisoners in his verbal assault on the wrongs of the world, shedding light and mirth on the day to day realities of keeping it real in this country, dealing with bigotry and above all, being proud to be a hard working Latino, recognizing the achievements and accomplishments of a people he is proud to be a part of.
George Lopez speaks to us as his friends and family, frank and honest, pointing out to us what makes him “tick” and what makes him mad, proving he is still raw and powerful in his comedy, but not just spouting profanities and making it up as he goes along, keeping it real. George talks to us about everything from his youth to today, addressing his heritage and how he views the world. George takes aim at people and politics, the good, the bad and the truly ugly. George, in his trademark fashion makes light of the country’s political issues yet discusses real issues with his audience, working the crowd and with lightning fast reflexes, makes each joke hit home, time after time, never missing.
This live album is great in its content and hits home on many levels; it is, as I said before, “Raw and Real”, very ethnic on many levels but not exclusive. George Lopez involves everyone who listens as part of his world, rich and diverse, like the world he is part of.
Visit his site and the Comedy Central Website for more information on George Lopez, his appearances and his release dates.
NYC & COMPANY, NEW YORK COMEDY FESTIVAL AND COMEDY CENTRAL ANNOUNCE THE SECOND ANNUAL COMEDY WEEK, NOVEMBER 5–11
NYC & COMPANY, NEW YORK COMEDY FESTIVAL AND COMEDY CENTRAL ANNOUNCE THE SECOND ANNUAL COMEDY WEEK, NOVEMBER 5–11
Comedy Central’s Keegan-Michael Key and Jordan Peele from the Network's Hit Series Key & Peele To Headline Free Comedy Week Show on Wednesday, November 7, at 8pm at the NYU Skirball Center for the Performing Arts.
NYC & Company, New York City’s official marketing, tourism and partnership organization, New York Comedy Festival and Comedy Central today announced the second annual Comedy Week, November 5–11. On the heels of Election Night, Comedy Central’s sketch-comedy duo, Keegan- Michael Key and Jordan Peele, from the hit series Key & Peele will perform a free Comedy Week show as part of the weeklong celebration on Wednesday, November 7, at 8 pm at the NYU Skirball Center for the Performing Arts. In addition, more than 175 comedians will be in New York City to participate in the New York Comedy Festival, performing at some of New York City’s most iconic venues, including the Apollo Theater, Carnegie Hall, the Beacon Theatre, Madison Square Garden, Town Hall and Carolines on Broadway.
“From live television and theater to comedy clubs and performance artists, comedy is embedded in the fabric of New York City all year-round,” said NYC & Company CEO George Fertitta. “We are proud to again present Comedy Week to provide New Yorkers and visitors opportunities to experience some of the funniest performers in the world as they showcase their humor and entertain audiences across the five boroughs.”
“We’re thrilled to be partnering with NYC & Company again to present Comedy Week in New York City,” says Caroline Hirsch, founder and owner of Carolines on Broadway and the New York Comedy Festival. “Once again, working with Comedy Central and NYC & Company, we will shine a spotlight on and bring awareness to comedy in New York and what it means to this city. Comedy is a vital part of this city’s economy. With all of the late- night talk shows, sitcoms, feature films and live stand-up performances, New York truly is the comedy capital of the world.”
Tickets for the free Comedy Week show will be given on a first-come, first-served basis and can be reserved starting today at nycgo.com/comedy.* After 550 tickets are claimed, additional tickets will be available through a Comedy Week sweepstakes and then through Twitter giveaways (follow @nycgo).
The second season of Key & Peele premieres on Wednesday, September 26, at 10:30pm ET/PT on Comedy Central. Fans can look forward to the return of President Obama’s “anger translator,” Luther, as Key & Peele continues to tackle issues like race relations in a less-than post-racial society and focusing on culturally relevant characters such as Steve Jobs and the King of Pop himself, Michael Jackson. Click here for more info on the show-- comedycentral.com/shows/key-and-peele.
This year Comedy Week will expand to include a series of free events across the City, including special comedy tours with Gray Line New York Sightseeing, a new mobile comedy scavenger hunt by Stray Boots, special New York City–themed shows at Upright Citizens Brigade and more. Full details will be announced in October at nycgo.com/comedy.
The New York Comedy Festival, November 7–11, is one of the world’s top comedy events, attracting more than 50,000 attendees in 2011. Comedians who are scheduled to perform in this year’s festival include Ricky Gervais, Robin Williams, Aziz Ansari, Adam Carolla, Bill Maher, Kevin Hart, Rob Delaney, Jim Gaffigan, Artie Lange, Patton Oswalt, Brian Regan and Marlon and Shawn Wayans. A full list of New York Comedy Festival performances can be found at nycomedyfestival.com, and additional shows will be announced in the coming weeks.
For more Comedy Week information and to register for the free Key & Peele event, visit nycgo.com/comedy.
About NYC & Company:
NYC & Company is the official marketing, tourism and partnership organization for the City of New York, dedicated to maximizing travel and tourism opportunities throughout the five boroughs, building economic prosperity and spreading the positive image of New York City worldwide. For more information, visit nycgo.com.
About The New York Comedy Festival:
Now in its ninth year, the New York Comedy Festival is produced by Carolines on Broadway in association with COMEDY CENTRAL. The festival has featured the country’s top comedians, including Louis C.K., Bill Maher, Ricky Gervais, Kathy Griffin, Dane Cook, Sarah Silverman, Aziz Ansari, Wanda Sykes and Joel McHale, to name a few. In 2007, the festival launched the “Stand-Up for Heroes” event to benefit The Bob Woodruff Foundation, which has featured performances by Robin Williams, Jon Stewart, Jerry Seinfeld, Lewis Black, Ricky Gervais, Conan O’Brien and Bruce Springsteen. The festival is produced by Carolines on Broadway. Sponsors are Citbank, Klondike, JetBlue and Svedka Vodka. The media sponsors are New York Post, Time Out New York, Variety and the Village Voice.
About Comedy Central:
Available on-air, online and on-the-go, COMEDY CENTRAL (www.cc.com) is the #1 brand in comedy and is owned by, and is a registered trademark of, Comedy Partners, a wholly-owned unit of Viacom Inc. (NASDAQ: VIA and VIAB). For up-to-the-minute and archival press information and photographs visit COMEDY CENTRAL's press Web site at www.cc.com/press and follow us on Twitter @ComedyCentralPR for the latest in breaking news updates, behind-the-scenes information and photos.
*Tickets for the free Comedy Week show are available while supplies last. Seating is not guaranteed. Seats will be available on a first-come, first-served basis.
Khatia Buniatishvili Dedicates her Second Album on Sony Classical To Chopin
Available September 18, 2012
Khatia Buniatishvili has been described by The Independent as “the young Georgian firebrand.” At only 24 years old, this Tblisi-born pianist has already achieved an exceptional maturity of interpretation and a distinctive artistic approach that make her playing unmistakable. For her second album on Sony Classical, Khatia now releases Chopin on September 18th, 2012.
The album encompasses five works superbly showcasing the breadth of her skills as a pianist. Chopin’s Sonata No. 2, op. 35, in formal and pianistic terms, is one of the most consummate works of the post-Beethoven period and above all known for its fascinatingly, strangely scurrying finale, which Robert Schumann compared to the mocking smile of a sphinx. The unprecedentedly lavish Ballade No. 4, op. 54 is extremely demanding, both technically and artistically. Waltz No. 2, op. 64, is suffused with Slavic heavyheartedness, while Mazurka No. 4, op. 17 concludes enigmatically, as if with an open question. This Polish folk dance is also the basis for the finale of Chopin’s Piano Concerto No. 2.
Khatia, who lives in Paris and speaks five languages, made her debut as soloist with orchestra when she was only six years old. Before the age of ten she received her first invitations to play in Germany, the Netherlands, Belgium, Austria, Switzerland, France, Italy, Israel and the United States.
Khatia is not only a third prize winner in the 2008 Rubinstein Piano Competition, but also a recipient of the award for the best Chopin interpretation. In 2010, she received the Borletti-Buitoni Trust Award and was included in the BBC New Generation Artists series. Since then, Khatia’s career has advanced into a new dimension: she has played with Paavo Järvi and Kent Nagano, among others, and in 2011 opened the Ruhr Piano Festival.
In the current season, Khatia is the “rising star” in Vienna at the Musikverein and Konzerthaus. She is performing recitals in Berlin, Vienna, Amsterdam and Paris, as well as at the Wigmore Hall and is a guest at the festivals in Schwetzingen, Lucerne and Verbier. In October, Khatia makes her debut with the Munich Philharmonic and the San Francisco Symphony.
Track listing: Khatia Buniatishvili, Piano
*Orchestre de Paris, Paavo Jarvi
Waltz in C-sharp minor, op. 64/2 - 1. Tempo giusto
Sonata No. 2 in B-flat minor, op. 35 - 2. Grave - Doppio movimento - 3. Scherzo - 4. Marche funèbre: Lento - 5. Finale: Presto
Ballade No.4 in F minor, op.52 - 6. Andante con moto
Piano Concerto No. 2 in F minor, op. 21* - 7. I. Maestoso - 8. II. Larghetto - 9. III. Allegro vivace
Mazurka in A minor, op.17/4 - 10. Lento ma non troppo
Oct. 18, 19, 20 – San Francisco, CA
Davies Symphonie Hall
Rachmaninoff: Piano Concerto No. 2
Conductor: Vladimir Jurowski
Visit her website http://www.khatiabuniatishvili.com and listen to some of the most exhilarating music by a woman whom is being recognized as innovative and an incredible, emotionally driven performer destine for worldwide acclaim.
Tuesday, September 4, 2012
It seems to me that the books can go one of two ways, with many varying shades in between of course. On the one hand, you have a story or even a full fledged book that originates with a writer or artist or both, or one person doing both. That's where most creator owned and independent work lies. Which is of course implied in the term "creator owned", duh. In this case, the writer and artist are in complete control of their creation and, presumably, the editors role is mostly to keep everybody on course and hitting their deadlines. They might take creative input from their editor, but when it comes to the creative content, the creators are the final word. In the case of a company owned book, a Marvel or DC character or something like that, it would be a bit different. If the editor chooses, they can allow the talent to steer the ship. However, the editor still has final say on what can and cannot be done on the book. They would be much more of a collaborator (if they wanted) and they can veto creative decisions. In this situation, they are responsible to the company they work for on all decisions made on their books. When the s--- hits the fan, they are the ones that take the heat. Which is probably why a lot of them might choose to go the other way.
In a truly editorially driven book, the creative direction of the book is mandated by editorial. In some cases it comes from above them on the company food chain. They basically tell the writers what they want and where the book needs to go. Some people have complained that the editor basically wants a typist. That could be oversimplifying it, but I could definitely see how frustrating it could be for a writer. You have decided to create for a living and now someone is telling you what to create and how to create it. Unless you're Grant Morrison apparently; but then he presumably makes that part of his contract, and the powers that be feel his sales warrant that situation. My opinion? I think the better editors find some sort of happy medium. Especially when you are working in an established, company owned universe. First off, there are rules you have to follow. These are company assets, you can't do whatever you want. Many say though, that having rules imposed makes you work harder (and often better) to find a way to work around the rules.
Quite often filmmakers speak about how they had to come up with alternatives because of budget constraints and their alternate choices made the film better. Hell, the main reason you don't see the shark through most of Jaws is because it didn't work. That choice to work around the shark made it much more terrifying. Many musicians do their best work when others are producing. When they are given the reins a lot of them never quite match the quality of their earlier output. Some do, don't get me wrong. I think the challenges imposed on some writers have created a lot of great work.
So to move back to comics, an editor that knows he can trust his writer will let his writer loose. Within reason. Also, as long as the people above you are trusting you to do your job, you are more likely to trust the people below you. Just as having constraints put upon you can make you work harder and more creatively, knowing you are being entrusted to care for these iconic and (to the company) important properties might just motivate you to put your best foot forward. A lot of these "editorial" complaints from the folks working for DC seem to indicate the real mess is above editorials pay grade. It's unfortunate. I always felt that if I was paying someone to do a job, I should let them do it.
So which way is the better way? Whichever one produces the best story, honestly. Some classic comics have come from both styles, and every shade in between. Remember, Alan Moore made Watchmen at a big company with an editor who was in charge. He also made League of Extraordinary Gentlemen with little to no editorial input, and that turned out pretty damn well too. However, I really do think that the best editors int he business have always found a balance. A way to serve both sides of the equation. You can have happy bosses and happy creatives. It is possible. I would never fault anyone for the style of management they choose, as long as it was a job well done. Sometimes I think it's best if those of us outside the system don't hear about it. Hey, you don't want to know how hot dogs are made. You may never eat one again.