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Author Archives: ner

The Quest for Earl Dittman

Having watched the trailers for a million bad movies and video releases on TV, I’ve grown subliminally aware of Earl Dittman of Wireless Magazines, who is always resorted to when no critic of any note can be found to provide an enthusiastic quote. Maybe it’s because there have been a particularly large number of these lately — Maid in Manhattan ... Read More »

Just for Al Barger…

Since Al’s having withdrawal symptoms, I thought I’d share. Today’s Austin American-Statesman has a report and pictures from last night’s triumphant Dixie Chicks concert at the Frank Erwin Center. Note the F.U.T.K. t-shirt that Ms Maines is sporting, which was also glimpsed on the local K-EYE news last night and during the live feed to the Country Music awards. I ... Read More »

American Life – Only mostly rubbish….

The Guardian‘s Alexis Petridis goes against all expectations and finds something nice to say about Madonna’s American Life today. Here are the good bits: Finally, and most importantly, she starts coming up with the sort of sublime pop melodies that are noticeably absent from the first half of the album. “Nothing Fails” has a wonderful choral finale. “Intervention” marries a ... Read More »

More free songs about the war

Two more contributions for your wartime compilation MP3 collection — or to help you decide which of your old favorites you can take down to Goodwill and claim never to have really liked in the first place. REM weigh in with The Final Straw, which is only slightly less obique than most of their material. Pleasant enough but what is ... Read More »

Never mind the b*nd*g*s…

The NME reports that Hot Hot Heat’s song “Bandages” has been removed from the BBC Radio 1 playlist because of a “prevalence of the word ‘bandages’ in the song”. Not having heard the song I’m at a loss to understand how the word “bandages” can occur in a song at all — it’s hardly the most mellifluous word and doesn’t ... Read More »

Iain Banks – “Ashamed to be British”

According to his letter in Saturday’s Guardian, Scottish novelist Iain Banks, author of Dead Air, The Wasp Factory, Complicity, The Crow Road and plenty more, has apparently destroyed his passport and sent the remains to Tony Blair as a protest at Britain’s involvement in the invasion of Iraq…. Update: Bank’s latest novel, Dead Air doesn’t seem to be available in ... Read More »

The Power of The Boycott

The figures are in (via Soundbitten). The Dixie Chicks’ Home has gone back up to Number 4 in the Billboard Top 200 Albums chart since that remark and remains at Number 1 in the Top Country Albums. All those conservative blowhards jabbering away have probably earned the Chicks another couple of limos and holiday homes each. Pats on the back ... Read More »

Positively the last word on the Dixie Chicks….

Just when you hoped the Dixie Chicks controversy had died down comes the biggest and silliest story of all: South Carolina House members say the Dixie Chicks should apologize for lead singer Natalie Maines’ criticism of President Bush by performing a free concert for troops. Nothing too different from what was being said by a thousand others. But…. Republican state ... Read More »

Music Biz leaps into action….

The entertainment business reels from the news that comedy rockers Tenacious D won’t be going to Scandinavia to take part in television promo and instore appearances because of the war, Donatella Versace won’t be attending the Oscars, Lisa Marie Presley has cancelled a promotional tour (for what?) and Madonna is “fine-tuning” her “American Life” video to make sure that there ... Read More »

The Chilean with the Singing Nose?

A name from the past that wasn’t mentioned at the rather depressing induction of the Clash into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame or any of the eulogies to the late Joe Strummer was Alvaro, the Chilean with the Singing Nose. “Who?” I hear you ask. “Strummer was a punk, he didn’t have anything to do with singing gnomes….” ... Read More »