What the Zeitgeist Are You Thinking, Hype Machine?

Oh yes, it’s prime time to prove to record labels and profit-worthy artists that your free Web site aspires to legitimacy. But COME ON, HypeM — especially in light of the Qtrax hilarity — how can you do something so dumb?

What kind of “zeitgeist” looks like this? A painful-to-the-eye layout of 50 records + a few advertised fakes? Wow. And this is the shit that put Virgin Sunset out?

First off, I blame Billy Corgan. Ever since he pretended it was 1992 all over again and named a record “Zeitgeist” I just KNEW that awesome word would slide straight into the linguistic deathpool.

Lo, I must give props to the Largeheartedboy blog, which aggregated ALL of the 2007 best of lists as it has for years.

But Hype Machine, if you’re gonna go legit, look what happened with QTrax — the public won’t side with the fakers, even in attempt to punk the majors. Because it’s all about the songs, with equal respect to the artists and the listeners. And, gimme a break, no fake-out ads in the middle of a Best of list, OK?

I’ll stick to Pazz and Jop.

No Reflection: Looking Out the Window

the view from my office window

I’ve been actively blogging here for 2.5 years — and intermittently since 1999, when I first launched WOOZradio. Why don’t I bother to self-promote or even make cards/stickers to increase traffic and the minimal revenue flow that could help me break even on the $15 a month or so I spend to keep Live365 running and paying royalties. Because I feel stupid talking about myself to a computer screen, I prefer to let my mind run free under the assumption assume that nobody is really reading, and, well, in the end I just do it for me.

Here’s an image that was on the front of netzoo.net back around mid-2001. Go ahead — click and see what this place looked like back then — it takes a few clicks to get to the music clips. Instead of actually listing my blogroll preferred online mags and music sites, I used orange colons. I have no idea why. The entire history of my lackadaisical updating of my personal web site / blog / whatever is well-documented (along with everything else on the innernetz) at archive.org.

That’s my little reflection for the day and now on with it. The sky looks awesome out my window (I’m here looking to the northwest) and there is much to be done at the day job (Yes, I do have a real, full-time job). My extra special Derby Dolls photo essay (thanks, Kelly) from the Tough Cookes-Fight Crew bout is scheduled to pop up now live at LAist during lunch. P.S.: If you want me to take you out in the next couple weeks, I’d love to, visit Caroline on Crack for more on that.

Best Use of Metallica’s ‘One’ in a Public Radio Story


Photo by Daniella Zalcman under CC license.

“Chronically Homeless See New Woes in New Orleans”, by Joseph Shapiro.

I heard it this morning around 3:15 a.m. when I flipped over my Zune and tuned to NPR after being awoken by violent sounds from a movie playing too loud in the next room. These are the stories that actually play three times here on the West Coast, where morning edition begins at 2 a.m. and in some cases, runs — or rather loops — until 9. When I lived in Chicago I thought it was cool to hear the BBC after getting home on a late night, but now, in LA, we’ve got tomorrow’s news at 2 a.m.

(The unfortunate consequences for an NPR junkie like myself are that Renee Montagne’s voice begins to randomly say “good morning” while your sleep and, at times I find I secretly wish a lengthy spell of laryngitis on the likes of Steve Julian. Sorry Steve, you’re not as annoying as Larry Mantle, just speak a bit faster if you could.)

OK, I digress. The point of this post is to highlight this great clip from another excellent Morning Edition piece from New Orleans. NPR had the best coverage during the Katrina disaster and they continue to document the aftermath better than anyone — check their Katrina & Recovery page.

In this particular story, in spite of the vivid and blighted landscape I was aurally transported to at 3:15 a.m., it totally made my day to hear 38-year-old Benjamin Parnell, a blind New Orleanian, laughing and — longing for his guitar — belting out the ever-powerful machine-gun lyrical climax of Metallica’s “One” a capella:”Landmine has taken my sight/Taken my speech/Taken my hearing/Taken my arms/Taken my legs/Taken my soul/Left me with life in hell…

The kicker, NPR followed through in providing the gritty, heavy metal context. Kudos to reporter Joseph Shapiro and his producer(s). Listen to the excerpt below. You can read / listen to the entire piece here.