September 2007

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Radiohead is releasing their new album In Rainbows on October 10th
Radiohead announced today that they’re releasing their new album In Rainbows on October 10th. Right now the only way to order it is from their website. That’s where the interesting part kicks in. If you pre-order the Download version through the site it asks you how much you want to pay.

That’s right; there’s no price. You decide how much it’s worth to you. It’s an interesting concept. And not necessarily one that will lead to people paying less than they would otherwise. There’s a story in Freakonomics about a guy who sold bagels. When he stopped charging a fixed price for the bagels and started asking for people to give whatever they thought was appropriate people actually paid more.

Anyway, I digress. It’s great that Radiohead is forgoing a record label for this release AND playing with new pricing models. Unfortunately I still don’t understand the hype about their music…

Sunday Music Spotlight – Rock Plaza Central

Rock Plaza Central, a Canadian Indie Rock Band
You know what would be a great idea for a concept album? A collection of songs about six-legged robot horses who think they’re real horses. No, seriously. Stop laughing. Come on, give it a chance.

Ok, so on its surface it seems that robot horses won’t make for a strong album. Luckily for Canadian indie rockers Rock Plaza Central and their enigmatic frontman Chris Eaton it’s really difficult to tell that’s what the songs on their latest album Are We Not Horses are about. Eaton’s songwriting is opaque enough to prevent you from discerning what’s truly going on inside his mind, yet accessible enough to draw you in. The quirky instrumentation and anthemic melodies glue the songs into your head. The whole package, while rough around the edges, is endlessly fascinating.
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NBC Bringing Back Knight Rider

Knight Rider is coming back to NBC
NBC announced that they’re making a pilot/made-for-tv-movie that will update the 80′s classic Knight Rider. Sorry, no Hasselhoff in this one. But it will be directed by Doug Liman, the man who’s brought us Swingers, The Bourne Identity, and Mr. and Mrs. Smith. The project sounds like it will be kind of a mashup of Knight Rider and Transformers, with the cars being able to change shapes. If the movie is successful the show will likely be picked up for NBC’s 2008 schedule.

Some old-school Knight Rider goodies after the jump:
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Hooray! The Office is Back!

And to celebrate here’s a montage of some great moments from the series:

Random Cover of the Week – Charles Mingus on Banjo

This, um, odd looking feller manages to put together a perfectly decent cover of Charles Mingus’ “Better Git it in Your Soul” (the opening track to one of jazz’s greatest albums, Mingus Ah Um).

Amazon Opens DRM-Free MP3 Store

Amazon.com has a new MP3 store with no DRMAmazon.comAmazon.com has finally opened their long-awaited MP3 store. It looks like most songs are priced between $.89 and $.99 and are encoded as 256kb MP3s. Right now there’s 2 million songs from 180,000 artists up. Kick ass!

Being the intrepid reporter I am I just had to try it out. I bought two tracks from The Bird and the Bee’s latest EP Please Clap Your Hands. The setup process is a little strange (you have to install a program from Amazon to download the tracks). But once you get that out of the way it’s a snap. I have a feeling this is going to give iTunes a serious run for its money.

Link to the store. And here’s the press release Amazon put out.

Jack White and Bob Dylan Perform Together!

Last week at the legendary Ryman Auditorium the fans who showed up to see Bob Dylan got a special treat. Not only did they get a surprise opening set from Elvis Costello, but none other than Jack White showed up to sing with Bob. To top it all off it wasn’t just any song they performed, but “One More Cup of Coffee”, a song Dylan had never performed live. Gee, that would have sucked to see. Behold the power of YouTube…

Sunday Music Spotlight – Aqueduct

David Terry is the driving force behind Aqueduct, a band from Seattle
In 2004 Ben Gibbard, lead singer of Death Cab for Cutie, discovered lo-fi indie rockers Aqueduct in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Since then the band has singed with Death Cab’s label, Barsuk Records, released two full albums and an EP, and toured with The Flaming Lips, The Shins, and The Apples in Stereo. Not a bad couple of years.
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Trailer for Walk Hard

Judd Apatow is on a roll. Since 2004 he’s been involved in Anchorman, The 40 Year-Old Virgin, Talladega Nights, Knocked Up, and Superbad. Not a bad resume. His next project is a mock biopic. It’s called Walk Hard: The Dewey Cox Story, and it looks like a pretty direct spoof of Walk the Line. John C. Riley plays Dewey Cox, a country singer whose rise to fame, tribulations, and ultimate redemption make up the story. Check out the trailer:

Random Cover of the Week: “Blackbird” on a Banjo

This kid plays us a cover of The Beatles’ “Blackbird” (from The White Album) on a banjo. And surprisingly it works somehow…

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