Saturday, February 15, 2014

Best of the Week:2/15/14

Quote of the Week: You’re Indian? The feather not the dot? (Frank Gallagher, Shameless)

Song of the Week: She Will Be Loved – Maroon 5 (House of Lies)

Big News of the Week: Let the Games Begin: Amidst threats of terrorism, gay propaganda, and shorts weather in Sochi, the Winter Olympics somehow kicked off without a hitch this week. Well unless you are Bob Costas’ eyeball. Or the dude who had to kick himself out of his bathroom. But still it is hard to get excited for this year’s games. Maybe it is the tape delay or many US disappointments, no Lindsey Vonn, Shawn White does not medal, Bode Miller chocks again. Sure the new slopestyle competitions were entertaining (the new team ice skating event, not so much). But things hopefully pick up today when the United States have their second hockey game against Russia (the last time we played theb home nation, it was one of the most competitive hockey game ever) and yet another one tomorrow. Then the tournament portion starts on Tuesday.

Preview Picture of the Week:

“Free Fall” Pretty Little Liars, Tuesday at 8:00 on ABC Family

Free Download of the Week: Bridges – Broods (iTunes)

New Album Release of the Week: Lions - William Fitzsimmons

New DVD Release of the Week: Game of Thrones: The Complete Third Season

Video of the Week: I have long called Parenthood the blue state version of Friday Night Lights. Jason Katims is the guy behind both and has even recruited a few Dillon alums to hang with the Bravermans (Lyla, Vince, Luke, and Jess). Except they all played new characters. Now for the first time, a former Coach Taylor player has found their way to California when Landry and his band Crucifictorious are recording at the Lunchenette with Amber after hours. Below is the first of four webisobes which has a few FNL references: “Lance,” Becky referred them (though it is not known how Amber knows her aside from her ex-fiancé’s doppelganger knocked Becky up), and even am East Dillon t-shirt makes an appearance. The next three episodes will hit the internets sometime next week and will feature another familiar face from Dillon.

Next Week Pick of the Week: Woman’s Gold Medal Curling Match, Thursday at 5:00 on CNBC: I was a bit disappointed with the curling coverage this year, maybe I am remembering it wrong, but I thought there was a dedicated curling channel last time. This time around there is a match at 3:00 AM, another one around mid day, and a final match at 5:00 PM (with bonus curling if time permits). Even more disappointing was the American play. The woman’s team gave up the first ever seven point end in Olympics history; I do not even remember any team scoring more than four in an end. Scoring seven can sometimes win you a match. The men have not fared much better (my theory is their uniforms are not cool enough). So I have switched my allegiance to Great Britain, at least on the sheet, for now mostly because of skip Eve Muirhead.

Friday, February 14, 2014

Around the Tubes: 2/14/14

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 Justified, Killer Karaoke, The Pete Holmes Show, Shirley Temple, Dallas, Killer Legends, Deal with It, The Safecrackers, Betsy Who, Heidi Merrill, 2014 New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival, and Sharknado 2.

- If you are one of those the skip promos, please note that Justified is taking next week off and will return February 25 at 9:00 on FX. Archer and Chozen continue their Olympics break and will also be off one more week.

- Valentine’s Day is today, but Killer Karaoke, which returns Thursday at 10:00 on TruTV, want to remind you that actually Love Hurts.

- As TBS's late-night series The Pete Holmes Show prepares to launch new episodes on Feb. 24, sister network TNT will present the half-hour special The Pete Holmes Show Special on Saturday, Feb. 15, following its NBA All-Star Saturday coverage. The special will feature host Pete Holmes’ favorite moments from The Pete Holmes Show's initial seven-week run.

- Turner Classic Movies (TCM) will pay tribute to Hollywood legend and U.S. Ambassador Shirley Temple Black with a night of her films on Sunday, March 9 starting at 4:30 PM with Heidi. Known forever as "America's Little Darling," Temple Black passed away at the age of 85 at her home in Woodside, Calif.

- The backstabbing, two-timing, double-crossing drama of TNT's Dallas is slated to kick off its third season Monday, Feb. 24, at 9:00. And TNT has the perfect binge-watching opportunity for viewers leading into it: a 25-hour marathon of Seasons 1 and 2. TNT's pre-season-premiere Dallas marathon will begin Sunday, Feb. 23, at 8 p.m. and run straight through until the premiere of the new season the following night. The marathon will also feature asocial media component, with various fan and character tweets featured throughout each episode. Additional content will be available through the Dallas Facebook page, narrated by John Ross Ewing.

- On Sunday at 8:00, Chiller will debut its newest special, Killer Legends. The hair-raising two-hour event focuses on four timeless urban legends (The Candyman, The babysitter and the man upstairs, The Hookman, and The Killer Clown) that haunt the psyche of the American public. This horror documentary follows filmmakers Joshua Zeman and Rachel Mills as they investigate the true crimes that may have spawned these urban legends while exploring how these myths evolved and why we continue to believe.

- Deal with It is returning to TBS Wednesday March 19 with new celebrity guests including Nick Cannon, Arsenio Hall, Bill Engvall, Kevin Nealon, Chris Jericho, Bob Saget, Tom Greem, Orlando Jones and more.

- TruTV has ordered six half-hour episodes of The Safecrackers, which is slated to premiere March 24. The series follows expert safecracker Phil Crawford and his best buddy Blaze as they travel the country determined to unravel the mysteries and unlock the secrets lurking in lost and abandoned safes. Phil, Blaze and their fun-loving crew of family and friends can track down and crack open just about anything, from giant bank vaults to intricate antique safes and even armored vehicles and underground bunkers.

- Spin recently debuted the latest song from Australian Betty Who, Heartbreak Dream. Check it out if you are a fan of indie dance pop like Robyn.

- Heidi Merrill, Nebraska native and current resident of New York City, brings a unique twist to the music world pulling inspiration from Sinead O’Connor, Evanescence, Leona Lewis, Robin, Sarah Mclachlan, Lifehouse and Kings of Leon. Mixing smoky textures of pop and rock, Merrill interprets everyday themes we all experience and translates them into a one-of-a-kind sound. Merrill is excited to announce that she will be opening for Tyler Hilton and Anna Nalick in March and April for their separate East Coast tours.

- AXS TV continues its commitment to being TV’s home for live music festivals, announcing today that it will be the official broadcaster of the 2014 New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival presented by Shell. The network has acquired the rights to air the Festival live, for the second consecutive year with StubHub returning as the Official Broadcast Partner.

- Syfy and The Asylum this week announced that Kelly Osbourne, Judd Hirsch, Andy Dick, Judah Friedlander, Vivica A. Fox and Mark McGrath will join the eagerly anticipated Original Movie Sharknado 2: The Second One. Look to the skies July when the movie premieres.

Thursday, February 13, 2014

Previewing Wicked Tuna: Season Three

It may be way too cold to go out fishing yourself this weekend, but for those that need their fishing fix, the next best thing is coming your way as Wicked Tuna returns for its third season tomorrow at 9:00 on the National Geographic Channel. The show follows fishing boats from the nation’s oldest seaport, Gloucester, Massachusetts out on the hunt for a bluefin fish that can be worth more than $20,000.

Last year Tyler McLaughlin, captain of the Pin Wheel took in the most money on the show and he is quick to let everyone else know that even if he is a lot lonelier this season (on opening day, he is the lone person on the Pin Wheel). While at the end of last season, Captain Dave Marciano saw his Hard Merchandise sink to the bottom of the harbor. So this season he has bring in a lot extra to pay for all the repairs he spent to get the boat ready for tuna season.

Also back this season is Paul Herbert who is taking over the captain seat of the Wicked Pissah (ugg, only in Boston) who wants to prove to his former boss Dave Carraro he can outfish him. And after a disappointing season, Captain Bill “Hollywood” Muniz is looking to redeem himself otherwise he may have to retire because of fanatical pressures. Paul will not the only one battling a former mentor as Tyler’s former boss Captain TJ Ott of the Hot Tuna is returning to Gloucester to put his former “bucket scrubber” in his place.

Later this season McLaughlin realizes flying solo is not the best idea and recruits college buddies to help him out but their inexperience in fishing shows. The boats brave harsh weather and wicked storms to make a profit. While one captain makes a boat switch. Later this season, one of the captains even resorts to espionage type tactics to find out where another captain has been successful just as two other captain strike an unlikely alliance to get a leg up on the competition.

Wicked Tuna airs Fridays at 9:00 on the National Geographic Channel. You can download Wicked Tuna on iTunes.

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

I Want My Music Television: 2/12/14

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.

Air Balloon – Lily Allen

Still no official word on a full album, but Lily Allen has already released a second music video over the last couple months. Hard Out Here was a fun take down of today’s pop music but ended up sounding too much like the songs she was mocking. Air Balloon is more classic Lily. The accompanying music video may not have any balloons, but there are random shots of butterflies, hillbillies, zebras, jaguars, mushrooms that look like they were imported from a Super Mario Bros. game, and a crucifix airship thingy. So “air balloon” is a euphemism for drugs, right?

Coming of Age - Foster the People

After Pumped up Kicks, Foster the People kept on releasing songs that went nowhere on the charts but the music videos for the videos were mostly entertaining. That trend looks to continue as Coming of Age just does not sound like a song that will lift them from One Hit Wonder territory, but at least the music video is interesting in a more serious montage from John Hughes film kind of way.

Girls Chase Boys – Ingrid Michaelson

The title for the new Ingrid Michaelson music video includes the addendum “An Homage to Robert Palmer’s Simply Irresistible) as if anyone over the age of twenty-five needed that clarification. Maybe she wanted to preemptively keep people from calling it a parody. Though it is not explained why she is dressed up like Sarah Palin.

Bridges – Broods

Winter is a dead month for music where you have to go on the look for new artists that may become the next big thing. It is around this time last year when I discovered Royals and Broods just may be the 2014 version Lorde. They are a brother sister duo from New Zealand (check), with a teenage lead singer (check), and worked with Joel Little on their EP (check) who was the guy who also scored a Grammy with Lorde Song of the Year. Based on those three criteria, a Lorde comparison seems easy, but I think a better comparison is a combination of Lorde and some other 2013 buzz artists, CHVRCHES and James Blake. If you like the song, it is currently iTunes Free Single of the Week. A six song EP is out now with a full length debut expected out later this year. Jump on the bandwagon now so you can say you knew them before they got big.

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Let’s Take it Back to the Way it Was

Love, Marriage, and Divorce - Toni Braxton and Babyface

Nobody shaped the sound of the nineties more than Babyface. The guy first reached number one with a song he wrote and produced in 1990 with I’m Your Baby Tonight by Whitney Houston. Those number ones kept mounting throughout the decade including two of the biggest songs of the decade from Boyz II Men (End of the Road and I’ll Make Love to You) before moving into other genres writing and producing hit songs for Madonna and Eric Clapton. He even won three straight Producer of the Year Grammy’s from 95-97. But when the new millennium hit, RnB music that we knew in the nineties was changing quickly and every RnB singer either went heavy in hip-hop or dance beats and the baby-making music that Babyface specialize seemed as old as the decade and he has not been to the top of the charts since, be it his own music or the songs he produced.

One of the artists that befitted most from Babyface’s pen was Toni Braxton, he wrote and produced her first four top ten songs. He did the bulk of the writing and production on her first two albums, both of which sold over five million copies each. Is it a coincidence that her last three albums, which featured a total of two songs written by Babyface never reached even a million sold? Maybe, but has sunk from the spotlight much like Babyface has over the past decade.

Not only has Toni Braxton brought Babyface back into the fold for her latest album, it is billed as a duet album between the two. Love, Marriage‎ and Divorce captures what was great about the duo back when the music they made was being played in the background in the conception of many of teenagers walking around today. Like the duo says halfway through the album, “Reunited, back to the business of love.” This may be the album nineties RnB fans have been waiting for since hip-hop and dance beats ruined the genre. Okay, there is one “dance” track, Heart Attack, but it is more disco than today’s annoying electronic variation.

Though hope takes up two thirds of the title, the break up makes the best music and those are the best tracks on the album. Both singers bring their best to the epic Hurt You where both lovers cheat on each other that starts off as a piano ballad before transforming into something bigger. If there were any justice, this song and album kicks off a new retro era in RnB. The genre is definite need of some reinvention, even if its back words. Maybe Babyface can produce a full Boyz II Men album next.

Song to Download – Hurt You

Love, Marriage, and Divorce gets a Terror Alert Level: High [ORANGE] on my Terror Alert Scale.

Monday, February 10, 2014

Feed Your iPod LXXXI: Silver Lining

One of the bigger upsets at this year’s Grammy’s was in the Best Country Album when newcomer Kacey Musgraves beat out one of the few musical tent poles out there Taylor Swift. Okay, it was only an upset just when you look at album sales because Red did not really even belong in the country category considering it did not contain one country song. More importantly Same Trailer, Different Park was better. Though relatively unknown at the time, millions of people saw Kacey and her electric boots perform Follow Your Arrow, but the whole album deserves a listen. When I reviewed the album, I listed the foot-stomping Stupid as the song to download, but now after almost a year with the album, I am more inclines to say melancholy Silver Lining is the best song on the record. In the review I declared “Woke up on the wrong side of rock bottom” as the best opening line of a debut album ever. But despite the sad sack opening line, just like how she made the be yourself anthem of Follow Your Arrow without making you roll your eyes with another one of those types a songs, Kacey gives a fresh take on the make lemon out of lemonade type songs. So if you saw Kacey Musgraves for the first time on the Grammy’s and like what you saw, give the whole album a chance starting with the album opener Silver Lining.

Silver Lining – Kacey Musgraves

Sunday, February 09, 2014

57 Channels and Only This Is On: 2/9/14

Shameless: What is it about the Chicago train system that makes people want to have sex on it? Or is this just what Hollywood wants us to believe? Thankfully Lip is staying in college because that storyline is much more interesting than doing the same things he had been doing back in the Gallagher house.

House of Lies: I enjoyed hearing Kristen Bell tell T.I. to “shut the (expletive deleted) up” way too much.

How I Met Your Mother: So did the show just admit they mess things up by not having Victoria be the mother? She certainly was a better character than the actual mother. Any chance Victoria is the subject for the How I Met Your Father spin-off? I would watch that. I was mostly disappointed in this episode because I was thinking about do a Ted Mosby Girlfriend Power Rankings for the series finale but the show beat me to it. Huruph.
You can stream recent episodes over at You can also download How I Met Your Mother on iTunes.

Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.: I was really beginning to enjoy the start of the episode , the accent debate, Simmons’ elaborate back-story, but it had to be ruined what is quickly becoming one of my least favorite television show clichés, the same timeline shown through multiple eyes. And then they had to almost kill off the token hot chick who only survived because like a Bond villain, the Ian Quinn decided to walk away instead of making sure she was dead. Granted it is plausible that The Clairvoyant still wants her alive but I thought t would be because these wounds would show why she is an object of unknown origins, in that she is resistant to bullets or heals super quickly, but nope, she is still near death.
You can stream recent episodes on Hulu. You can also download Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. on iTunes.

Pretty Little Liars: I know abusing uppers in high school is a huge problem these days (or at least that is what Fox News tells me) but it really hard for any high school drama to tackle the issue and not be compared to Jessie Spano. That is not a comparison that anyone wants. Last week I theorized that Erza had some help as A but considering all the camera he has everywhere, maybe he is doing it by himself. Although if I cared enough, I would go back and see if the pictures of Spencer and Hanna fighting were from the point of view of the detective who I thought may have been in on it last week.

Speaking of not caring, Hanna showing up on the spin-off was a bit worthless. She almost took a bath with a spider but did not. She almost got kidnapped by Little Red Coat but did not. She almost got back together with Calab but did not. The show itself is just one tease, they bring the token hot chick back to life, but no, she has to stay dead because everyone needs to be alive for the curse to work. Sorry token hot chick.
You can stream recent episodes on Hulu. You can also download Pretty Little Liars on iTunes.

The Goldbergs: How did Adam die playing Contra? Seriously dude, Up Up Down Down Left Right Let Right A B A B Start.
You can stream recent episodes on Hulu. You can also download The Goldbergs on iTunes.

Justified: Well that was epic. It is amazing that this show can shove this much awesomeness into one episode when most cannot get that much into one season. We get the pirate from Dodgeball just mowing down everyone except for Art who gives him Raylan’s ten seconds to leave the diner speech (granted unlike Raylan, Art gave him about thirty seconds to leave). Then just months after catching Drew Thomason, the marshalls bring down Theo Tonin (hey crazy enforcer guy, how about not shoot aimlessly when your boss is in one of those bins). Even Jonny orchestrated a great triple cross. The Boyd storyline was a bit weak. It seems that Mara will be this season’s Cassie; the chick behind the dude who Boyd kills who you think will go away after he is gone but will inevitably come back and bring down Boyd later in the season.
You can stream recent episodes on Hulu. You can also download Justified on iTunes.

Nashville: Another drugged up to work storyline, but maybe it was not the best idea to give that storyline to the worst actor on the show.
You can stream recent episodes on Hulu. You can also download Nashville on iTunes.

King of the Nerds: The show should really release a board game version of Battle Hammer, I would play that. It is basically Battleship but you can move your ships. Well you can move them legally. But then again, why spend money on a new board game when you can just import the rules to Battleship, all you have to do is bring your own dice.
You can download King of the Nerds on iTunes.