Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Don't Dream It's Over

The Cure - 4:13 Dream B-

The Cure is back! It's been four long years, but the new album, 4:13 Dream is in stores today.

Now, some of you who know me well know that the Cure is my all time favorite band. Back in the late 80's I found religion in the form of Robert Smith. He became my god, and Disintegration was my bible. That album forever changed my life. Now, almost 20 years after Disintegration, Robert Smith and the boys are still relevant, still making important music, and they still move me.

4:13 Dream is bouncy and the overall mood feels happier than their last two albums, Bloodflowers and The Cure. But that's not to say it's without their signature gloom and doom. On the track "The Reasons Why" Smith sings "I won't try to bring you down about my suicide" and promises not to "hang you up about my love life". While the album's closing track, "It's Over", Smith frantically proclaims, "every inch of me is raw and it's always f*cking over!".

The Cure has been around a long time (since 1977), many reviewers like to provide a cross reference to what each new album sounds like and this review is no different. 4:13 Dream definitely sounds like an offspring of Wish (1992), with hints of their previous (self titled) album, The Cure (2004). Rumor has it that the band recorded 30+ songs (this initially was suppose to be a double album), so hopefully another Cure album will be coming out soon.

My top 10 favorite Cure albums (in order)
*Box set
10. Bloodflowers (2000)
9. Faith (1981)
8. Wish (1992)
7. Join the Dots: B-sides and Rarities, 1978-2001 (2004)*
6. The Head on the Door (1985)
5. Standing on a Beach/Staring at the Sea: The Singles (1990)
4. Seventeen Seconds (1980)
3. Pornography (1982)
2. Kiss me, Kiss me, Kiss me (1987)
1. Disintegration (1989)

Saturday, October 18, 2008

W. - Movie Review

W. (PG-13) 129 minutes C

Starring Josh Brolin, Elizabeth Banks, Richard Dreyfuss, James Cromwell, Ellen Burstyn, Thandie Newton, Jeffrey Wright, Scott Glenn, and Ioan Gruffudd

Based on the Oliver Stone films I've seen, I always thought he was a little overrated. Here's a few Highlights and Lowlights:

World Trade Center - sucked!
Natural Born Killers - soundtrack was better than the film.
U Turn - a flop if not for (a sexy) Jennifer Lopez.
Born on the Fourth of July & Platoon - Never saw them.
The Doors - disappointing, probably because I wasn't stoned.
Alexander - the previews looked really lame.

W. (directed by Oliver Stone) is boring. When I look at my watch during a film that's usually not a good sign. The only saving grace is that this is an interesting look at W's inner circle of cronies.
For example, I had no idea he and Carl Rove were so tight for so long. The Carl Rove character was actually kind of cute in a squirrelly kinda way.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Iver Survive Her

Bon Iver - For Emma, Forever Ago A-

Bon Iver (real name Justin Justin Vernon) breaks up with his girlfriend (let's assume she's heartbreakingly beautiful), and breaks up the band (let's assume "artistic differences"), heads to the mountains to grow a beard, get weird, and find himself... and the result is an achingly exquisite, atmospheric record called For Emma, Forever Ago.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Religulous - Movie Review

Religulous (R) 101 minutes A-
Almost everyone I know believes in god...

Starring Bill Maher, Jose Luis De Jesus Miranda, Steve Berg, and Andrew Newberg

Growing up, I went to church every Sunday with my family. I didn't always like it, but much like going to the gym, I felt better about myself after I went.

Nowadays I'm cynical when it comes to religion, I often tell people that I am more spiritual than religious. I believe in god (because that's the way I was raised), but after watching this documentary it further confirms my skepticism about faith, what people believe and why.

Religulous is a documentary film about Maher's search for religious substance. Raised by a Jewish mother and a Catholic father, Maher sincerely seeks answers to the mysteries of theology. I found the film to be completely intriguing and highly entertaining, but I sense that some will see this as a "Michael Moore style documentary" and anti-religion propaganda. Personally, I think anyone/everyone can benefit from the questions being raised.

Highly recommended!

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Nick & Norah's Infinite Playlist - Movie Review

Nick & Norah’s Infinite Playlist (PG-13) 90 Minutes B
Love is a mix CD

Starring Michael Cera, Kat Dennings, Ari Graynor, Jay Baruchel, Rafi Gavron, and Aaron Yoo

First off, let me say that I am about 15 to 18 years above the targeted age group for this film. But nevertheless, I loved it! And truth be told... it almost made me cry (I'm so lame).

Nick & Norah's Infinite Playlist is a light hearted, loosey-goosey, romantic comedy- full of charm and innocence. The kind of innocence one possess their senior year in high school with an entire life ahead of them. The kind of innocence where your world hinges on a kiss and a smile... where the possibilities are endless!

The two main characters (Nick and Norah) are extremely likable and charming, set to the soundtrack of their lives with New York city as their back drop. Nick & Norah is infectious like that song on the radio you can't get out of your head.

The plot isn't complex, and you pretty much know what's going to happen before it even begins. But this infinite playlist is one that's worth listening to... if only to remember the innocence you once had.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Shoppers Who Won't Settle For Less

Here is my overdue review of Wifeshopping by Steven Wingate

I had the pleasure of meeting Steven Wingate a couple of months ago. I discovered him on Goodreads.com, visited his website, and read several intriguing online reviews of his new book, Wifeshopping. A few weeks later RW and I attended his reading at the Tattered Cover bookstore. He was very cool, down-to-earth, and engaging; Mr.Wingate has a genuine passion for fiction that made me want to rush home and start writing. I felt inspired to explore my most neurotic, vulnerable and darkest romantic longings.

Wifeshopping is an award winning collection of stories that is completely captivating and totally devastating. Devastating because so many of the protagonist here are guys I've known or guys I relate with. All the stories are top notch, and Wingate does an amazing job of capturing the uncertainty and inner workings of relationships without being cheesy or predictable. The endings of his stories are not always wrapped up neatly, he adventurously leaves the readers and characters with room to breathe (but not in a way that seems incomplete).

It's hard to say which of these stories I liked best, but Me and Paul stands out, as does Faster and In Flagstaff. These stories made me feel happy, sad, aggravated... they filled my head with countless visions of beauty and daydreams of romantic yearnings, but most of all it made me want to write and find more books like this that inspire and excite.

A great read and highly recommended!

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Free Books!

<-------- This is Jessica Brody. She was born in Los Angeles, but grow up in Colorado. She's the author of the bestselling novel- The Fidelity Files, and founder of a cool website called Free Book Friday.

So go to http://www.freebookfriday.com/ and sign up to win a free book! It's free dammit!

Every Friday she's giving away free books! And while you're at it, check out her website http://www.thefidelityfiles.com/

Friday, October 3, 2008

Sister I'm A Poet

Here's a poem I originally wrote 7 or 8 months ago...

by C. Pierce

I lied.
No one knew that I was such an addict.
She was invisible, I was transparent.
Her black hair smelled like night.

Tattoos, smokes, condoms, and gum
All for free.
The air tasted like her when she moved.
Drive! She said, lets go!

My hands gripped the steering wheel
Tight; palms sweaty.
Neon light, broken beer bottles;
Vacancy, sinners welcomed.

Black men like me and not like me.
His tented windows and white sneakers
Said something I couldn’t understand.
3 a.m. I sat there raw and naked.

Evening fire smoldered in morning sheets,
Strung out, scattered and morally unrestrained.
I questioned the empty closet,
Then looked at her and made a wish.

Soon I will be myself again,
She will be a film that plays repeatedly.
My reintroduction to guilt, shame, and remorse.
A secret life of crime and passion.

Thursday, October 2, 2008

The VP Debate (a field goal battle/defensive struggle)

So I thought that tonight's debate was like a low scoring football game with lots of running plays, short passes, and defense.

Palin looked like a rookie quarterback who memorized an abbreviated playbook. She ran a vanilla offense with lots of short screen passes and five yard outs. She initally appeared timid and nervous but seemed more relaxed as the game progressed. She didn't turn the ball over, nor did she throw any touchdown passes. She lead her team down the field and they converted 4 field goals.

Biden on the other hand looked like an old veteran quarterback who also didn't display much of a passing attack, but he was able to manage the game like a veteran quarterback should. He didn't turn the ball over, didn't pass for a score, but he successfully converted a key 4th down which led to his team's 5th field goal.

All in all, neither quarterback was impressed or unimpressed considering all of the great defense. Palin has a lot to learn and I don't think she is ready to be a starter in the NFL.

With Biden you pretty much know what to expect because of his years in the NFL. He may have lost a step or two, but he knows how to read defenses and check down to his second or third receiver when he needs too.

Biden 15
Palin 12