Saturday, April 02, 2011

Best of the Week - 4/2/11

Quote of the Week: Far as I'm concerned, y'all deserve each other. (Raylan, Justified)

Song of the Week: Graveyard – Lucy Schwartz (Parenthood)

Big News of the Week: To the Cloud: If you bought any free music from AmazonMP3 this week you noticed something different, the music did not actually download to your computer. This is because Amazon unveiled its Cloud service this week and any music you buy on Amazon MP3 will be saved on the Cloud for free. You can upload an additional 5 gigs worth of storage to the Cloud for free. Of course that barely puts a dent into my over 50 gigs of music. But if you buy a full MP3 album from their store, you can be updated to their 20 gig plan for free for a year from the date you buy the album. In honor of this promotion, Amazon MP3 has deeply discounted albums from Kanye West, Coldplay (which were the top two spots on my list of The 100 Greatest Albums of the 00’s), Norah Jones, Beastie Boys, and more for $3.99 or less. Considering you need an Android to play the music mobilely (which I do not have, or any smartphone for that matter) and my oversized library of music, I do not see myself using the Cloud until it is unlimited for free. And wouldn’t be surprised between Amazon, Google, Apple or Microsoft, one if not more of the companies will do so at some point.

Free Download of the Week: Life On A Chain (2011 Remaster) – Pete Yorn (Amazon MP3: Get the song that ranked in at #83 on my list of The 1000 Greatest Songs of the 00’s for the low, low price of free.

Deal of the Week: 100 Albums for $5 Each: This month you can get albums from Boyz II Men, Alicia Keys, Creedence Clearwater Revival, and Raphael Saadiq, all of which can cound to your free 20 gig Cloud upgrade..

New Album Release of the Week: Blood Pressures - The Kills

New DVD Release of the Week: Friday Night Lights: The Fifth Season

Video of the Week: Comedy Central is launching a new show this Wedensday at 10:30 called Workaholics featuring recent college graduate roommates who spend their days scheming together to avoid doing any real work and their nights looking for good times. Check out a preview of the show below:

WorkaholicsApril 6, 2011 at 10:30/9:30c
Preview - Countdown to Vaginatown
JokesThe Comedy AwardsThe Comedy Central Roast of Donald Trump

Next Week Pick of the Week: Expedition Week, All Week starting at 8:00 on the National Geographic Channel: For a full rundown, check out my preview of Expedition Week, and here is a bonus preview from Wedensday’s Ben Franklin’s Pirate Fleet:

Friday, April 01, 2011

What Came First, the Music or the Misery?

High Fidelity

If you are lucky, about once a decade a movie comes out that as if the filmmakers are saying, “Hey Scooter McGavin, this one is for you.” That was the case for High Fidelity, a borderlined obsessive compulsive who cases a little too much about music who seems to mess it up with every girlfriend. High Fidelity, this month’s induction into the Scooter Hall of Fame, was a romantic comedy where you were not quite sure if the romance was with the women of the film or the music.

High Fidelity follows John Cusack as he tries to convince himself that his latest failed relationship does not crack his top five most memorable break ups which leads him back to these ex girlfriends to see why exactly things went wrong. (Fun Fact: Justified’s Ava Crowder cracked the top five.) It also does not help that his latest, and possibly greatest, break up it currently shacked up with the hippie version of Tim Robbins.

High Fidelity also marked the breakout role for Jack Black who catapulted from bit player to headliner after the movie. This was well deserved because he stole every scene he was in through the movie as the bombastic employ of Cusack and was the perfect yin to Todd Louiso soft spoken yang. Black even got to show off his singing chops much to everyone’s surprise after every spent the whole movie blowing of his musical ambitions.

But the real scene stealers were the music. You knew from the trailer when Black broke out Walking On Sunshine, this was going to be a special movie and even includes a cameo from Bruce Springsteen. One segment that hit close to home was when a reporter asks Cusack his top five favorite song and he spend the rest of the movie (and a few bonus scenes) editing his choices. This went all the way to the end of the music where I Believe (When I Fall in Love It Will Be Forever) remains one of the greatest credit choices of all time. High Fidelity showed, it does not matter how simple a song is, it is how you interpret it.

Thursday, March 31, 2011

Around the Tubes - 3/31/11

I have gotten a plethora of cool press releases have been flooding my inbox recently that you may find interesting. This post will include blurbs on Friday Night Lights, His Way, Canadian Blast sampler, The New Yorker, Falling Skies, and Mob Wives.

- NBC has sent along their first bit of videos hyping the last season of Friday Night Lights including talks with Adrianne Palicki (Tyra Collette), Aimee Teegarden (Julie Taylor), Madison Burge (Becky Sproles), Matt Lauria (Luke Cafferty), Taylor Kitsch (Tim Riggins), and Zach Gilford (Matt Saracen) about the new season. Below is the cast talking about their favorite moments of the series. Friday Night Light returns April 15 at 8:00.

FNL Cast on Final Season

- You may not recognize the name Jerry Weintraub, as a concert promoter he worked with Frank Sinatra and Led Zeppelin and brought such films like Karate Kid and Diner. Now HBO is looking back on his five decade career this Monday at 9:00 with His Way directed by Oscar nominee Douglas McGrath and features everyone from George Clooney to George H.W. Bush. Below is a trailer.

- For those that could not make it to South by Southwest this year, you can still sample songs from the best acts from Canada that trekked all the way down to Austin this year with this Canadian Blast sampler featuring tracks from Chromeo, Hollerado, The Sheepdogs, Hey Rosetta!, Said The Whale, Mother Mother, PS I Love You; 65 songs in all.

- If you subscribe to Time Warner Cable, you may want to head over to The New Yorker who has a detailed explanation of your bill. Also from the April 4 issue, Nancy Franklin watches the 8-part The Kennedy’s mini-series so you don’t have to.

- With just two and a half months until the premiere, TNT has released its second trailer to their new Steven Spielberg produced Falling Skies which sheds more light on the alien invasion show including the ominous diolouge, “all they wanted were the kids” and even better look at the four legged invaders and their mechsuits.

- Gamblers are the unspoken big losers of a potential NFL lockout and for those fearing not being able to bet of football next fall can now let you bet on whether the lockout will end before September 1, 2011 (-112 for both yes and no).

- Can’t get enough television shows with (House)Wives in the title? Well you are in luck, Mob Wives Sunday April 17 at 8:00 on Video Hits 1.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Previewing Expedition Week

If the video above was not tip off enough, it is the time of year again to go globetrotting with the National Geographic Channel for Expedition Week. This year they will be transporting you to the heights of the Himalayas to a couple leagues under the sea, and even centuries in the past. Naturally they kick off the festivities this Sunday at 9:00 with a hunt of cannibals that will takes Piers Gibbons (who last year went on the hunt for Headshrinkers) deep into seldom traveled jungles of Papua New Guinea to find some who has tasted human flash. (National Geographic was nice enough to send along a cookbook with a recipe to accompany each episode and Eating with Cannibals included “finger food” of hot dogs with a generous helping of ketchup. Shoot me an e-mail if you want the recipe.) Humor aside, it is chilling to hear someone talk about killing and eating two woman.

Below is a complete rundown of what to expect for Expedition Week. If you want even more on Expedition Week you can head over to where you can also check out Expedition Granted where two young explorers are competing to win $10,000 to go to the expedition of their dreams. Head over to vote for who you thinks deserves the money.

Eating with Cannibals (Sunday 4/3 at 9): Last Expedition Week, author and explorer Piers Gibbon headed deep into the Amazon jungle to locate tribes that practiced headshrinking. In his newest adventure, Gibbon looks at one of mankind’s ultimate taboos: cannibalism. He’ll trek into the rain forest of Papua New Guinea to find tribe members who ate human flesh. Gibbon meets with members of the once-feared Biami tribe and witnesses their ritual techniques. Then he’ll learn who they killed and why, and if they still practice cannibalism today.

Finding Jack the Ripper (Sunday 4/3 at 10): Could Jack the Ripper have been the world’s first trans-Atlantic serial killer? Can 21st century techniques and CGI 3-D autopsies crack this 19th century crime spree, while reversing decades of investigative assumptions? Retired U.K. murder squad detective Trevor Marriott is determined to finally unmask the Ripper and possibly link him to other murders in Europe and the U.S.

Hunt for the Abomable Snowman (Monday 4/4 at 9): Across the Himalayas are stories of the yeti, or abominable snowman. Half man, half ape, the yeti is said to roam only the most remote peaks, where people rarely venture. Now, veteran explorer and climber Gerry Moffatt sets out to find proof in a hunt that will test his stamina. As conventional scientific theories challenge ancient beliefs and credible witnesses, he works to separate fact from fiction and find hard evidence that the legend is real.

Last Stand of the Templars (Monday 4/4 at 10): The Templars were considered the pope’s private army, protecting Jerusalem for more than 50 years. But their legacy came to a sudden end — casting them from the heights of wealth and power to the dark corners of history. Now, on the ruins of a 12th century castle near the border between what are now Israel and Syria, a team of archaeologists peel away centuries of sediment, uncovering signs of a six-day siege that could have led to the Templars’ demise.

Gladiators Back from the Dead (Tuesday 4/5 at 9): More than one million of history’s ultimate fighters died in the arenas of the Roman Empire, yet not a single complete gladiator skeleton has ever been found. Now, archaeologists in England have unearthed what is believed to be an ancient gladiator graveyard. It contains the skeletons of 75 adult males, all of whom died in the prime of life, with savage bone wounds suggesting lives of violence. Forensic anthropologists examine the evidence, and special graphics bring these superstar fighters back to life to uncover important clues about how they lived and died.

Egypt’s Lost Rival (Tuesday 4/5 at 10): It rivaled ancient Egypt but was lost to history. Now a team of archaeologists have made a major discovery in the Syrian desert: artifacts from a burial chamber deep within an ancient palace that paint a never-before-seen picture of a powerful metropolis known as Qatna. What became of its vast riches? And what brought about the final fate of this ancient superpower?

Return of the Ghost Ship (Wednesday 4/6 at 9): Underwater explorers in the Baltic Sea set out to bring a recently discovered “ghost ship” — one of the most intact ancient wooden wrecks ever found — back to life. By pushing the frontiers of maritime archaeology and using the latest technology, the team hopes to recover artifacts from the ship, take measurements and create a 3-D model of the ship with pinpoint accuracy — unlocking a treasure trove of information.

Ben Franklin’s Pirate Fleet (Wednesday 4/6 at 10): A lost piece of American history may have been uncovered deep in the sea — a shipwreck thought to have belonged to a fleet of American privateers. In the late 18th century, the Irish Sea was a cauldron of kidnapping, thievery and unrepentant skullduggery. Governments, including the nascent U.S., hired sea raiders, or “privateers,” to pillage and steal from merchant vessels. Is it possible that this ship was on a mission from Benjamin Franklin to capture British sailors to exchange for American prisoners?

Into the Iceland Volcano (Thursday 4/7 at 9): In spring 2010, the nearly unpronounceable volcano Eyjafjallajökull spewed ash clouds across Europe, bringing international air traffic to a standstill. Now, for the first time ever, a team of explorers descend into the nearby Thrinukagigur volcano crater — the only place on earth where it is possible to enter an old magma chamber. Inside the crater, the team finds crucial evidence revealing the inner workings of Icelandic volcanoes. With an even bigger eruption looming, the race is on to predict when the volcano will blow — before it’s too late.

Man vs. Volcano (Thursday 4/7 at 10): Journey into the mouth of Africa’s most active volcano, Nyiragongo, and stand on the shore of the world’s largest lava lake. Join an expedition with a National Geographic Magazine photographer and an international team of scientists as they reach the volcano’s summit — a near-vertical 11,385 feet — and then rappel directly into its mouth — 1,300 feet — nearly the height of the Empire State Building. With little doubt it will erupt again, the team hopes to take stunning images and gather geological samples to unlock the secrets of one of most dangerous and least studied volcanoes in the world.

Lost Land of the Tiger (Friday 4/8 at 9): Go in search of an undiscovered tiger population rumored to be hidden in the Himalayan kingdom of Bhutan. This pristine country of lush forests, clear rivers and icy mountains could hold the key to safeguarding the future for these big cats. But first, the team must trek across Bhutan’s wildest terrain and face its extreme weather — pushing the expedition to its very brink. With cameras strategically placed, the team is closing in on capturing key evidence of the tigers said to be living here.

Tiger Man (Friday 4/8 at 10): A seemingly impossible dream: to create a new population of wild tigers outside their natural habitat. One man, John Varty, did just that. Starting with two young, zoo-born tigers, Varty now has more than 15 tigers at his Tiger Canyons reserve, and has used ever-present cameras to document two years of their lives. Whether mating, birthing or hunting, Varty shows these magnificent tigers with remarkable, “up close and personal” detail. His methods can be controversial, but it’s a gripping, intimate look at tigers as never seen before.

Death of a Sea Monster (Saturday 4/9 at 9): A sea monster cemetery lies at the top of the world — an incredible grave site containing countless fossilized remains of huge marine predators from the Jurassic era. Join an expedition to this remote burial ground via helicopter and boat. Paleontologists will contend with powerful polar bears and erratic Arctic weather to uncover yet another treasure trove of newly discovered predatory sea monsters. This time, it’s a complete ichthyosaur skeleton — the first of its kind.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Don't Call it a Comeback vol. IV: The Pharcyde

It seems like once a week I am listening to my iTunes library and I hear a song that makes me go, this artist really needs a comeback. So I thought I would start a new feature here on the 9th Green highlighting an artist that really needs to reenter the public consciousness. The only criterion is that the artist hasn’t had a legitimate hit in over a decade.

Due for a Comeback: The Pharcyde

Biggest Hit: Passing Me By

Last Hit: Drop (1996)

Where Are They Now: After two critically acclaimed albums, Slimkid3 and Fatlip left the group for solo projects after a third and the two remaining member released just one album without them. The group has reunited for a few concerts and hopped on each other’s solo projects, but no new music from the four of them since 2000.

Why the World Needs a The Pharcyde Comeback: Because rap has gotten bland these days aside from backpack disciple Kanye West. Slimkid3 (who now records under his government name Tre Hardson) and Fatlip have recorded some decent tracks in the past decade, but nothing like the give and go stylings of The Pharcyde. Really except the once and a blue moon that the Beastie Boys (who made cameos in the drop video) release and album, the rap group has disappeared from the musical landscape.

And speaking of comeback, whatever happened to Delicious Vinyl? They were set to be the next Def Jam with artists like The Pharcyde, Tone-Loc, Young MC and The Brand New Heavies but did not add any notable artists after that. You would think after all the buzz those artists generated, they could have picked up some new artists.

Monday, March 28, 2011

I Want My Music Television - 3/28/11

There have been a couple of videos that have caught my eye lately so I thought I’d give them some love since the death of Musical Television left a void for a forum on the art form. If you are interested in buying the video through iTunes, click the title link (where available). If you are interested in buying the song, look for a link in the analysis.

True Faith – George Michael

Last week I defended Rebecca Black against claims that her song Friday was the worst song ever recorded saying, sure it is bad, but there are plenty worse songs out there. And just days later, George Michael released this True Faith song, which, as it turns out, is the worst song ever in the history of the world. And it isn’t a good sign for George when I say a still from the video, I originally thought it was Richard Hatch. Now if you excuss me, I need to poke something sharp in my ear.

When You're Young - 3 Doors Down

I saw that 3 Doors Down had a new video, and when I pressed play, I heard the opening riff and thought to myself, oh, they made a new video for When You’re Gone and looked at the title again and nope, it is apparently a different song with the same riff. And I have said this before and hopefully this is the last time: old dudes, stop trying to pull off the Justin Beiber, it doesn’t make you look younger, it just makes you look silly.

Heart Skips a Beat - Lenka

It is hard not to be down with a music video that sports an live action Operation homage. Thanks Lenka.

Changes - Dirty Vegas

I couple weeks ago I posted part one of a three part music video from Dirty Vegas, though just like part one; I am not entirely sure what is going on. Hopefully part three wraps everything up in a nice little bow.

Sunday, March 27, 2011

57 Channels and Only This Is On - 3/27/11

Chuck: Wow, Volkoff tried to kill Chuck. Or did she? I have a feeling Leland Palmer may be the one behind the hit. Although I could do without the standalone episode unless the C.A.T. Squad reunites. You can stream recent episodes on Hulu. You can also download Chuck on iTunes.

How I Met Your Mother: Has the show run out of funny ideas that they have had to fill this season up with dramatic elements? Between Marshal’s dad (that they are still references) and Barney’s (who is getting really annoying when they focus on his search for daddy), it is getting too heavy this season. And they really glossed over that Barney has a college-aged half sister. Could she turn out to be Ted’s baby mama? You can stream recent episodes over at You can also download How I Met Your Mother on iTunes.

The Event: Most unbelievable part of the episode: the Token Hot Chick poising as 41 wearing a dress that is way to gravity defying for someone that age to pull off. And I wonder why the alien’s do not just sing the building around the navy like they did the last time the government were closing in on them? You can stream recent episodes on Hulu. You can also download The Event on iTunes.

Castle: Holy Corbin Bernsen sighting! I bet there was no one more exited to hear Charlie Sheen talk about Major League 3 than Corbin. Until he realized that he already stared in the third movie entitled Back to the Minors. And poor Mac, I knew she did it as soon as her new boss hired as a staff writer. You can stream recent episodes on Hulu. You can also download Castle on iTunes.

Lights Out: Like I said back in the second episode, that picture at the kids birthday party was going to come back and haunt him. But he sure came up with a good plan to make it go away, although I am not sure how wise it was to put his fate on a guy with dementia. You can stream recent episodes on Hulu. You can also download Lights Out on iTunes.

Survivor: Redemption Island: Russell has gotten a lot of grief for his strategy of picking dumb hot chicks to do his bidding, but Boston Rob has done the exact same thing on his seasons to the detriment of his chances of even making the jury. Natalie and Ashley may out dumb blonde any of Russell’s dumb blonde alliances. He should thank the other tribe for throwing the challenge because he could have easily have seen Russell on Redemption Island at some point later. But much like last week, I am still waiting for something interesting to happen but we are probably too deep for them to swap tribes and may be two or three episodes away from a merge. You can stream recent episodes over at

Survivor on iTunes

Justified: Even though I could have done without another Wynonna theft episode, this is the episode where things are going to get rolling when the mining company goes after the Bennett’s with the Raylan and the Marshall service caught in the middle. I can’t wait. You can stream recent episodes on Hulu. You can also download Justified on iTunes.

Community: I am not sure who was more upset that Abed’s dinner turned out to be another homage, Jeff or myself. It is really annoying when the show does parody’s of movies I have never seen. And I would have much preferred a Reservoir Dogs party to a Pulp Fiction one. You can stream current episodes on Hulu. You can also download Community on iTunes.