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Mon 12.22.2014
7:33 PM

Good news for Nine Inch Nails fans. A giant torrent was released that contains 25 years of live performances. That website spent years seeking out and collecting bootlegs, a massive undertaking. I’ve only seen NIN twice, once on the Outside Tour with David Bowie and another time on the Fragility tour, and it’ll be so cool to hear recordings from so long ago.

Mon 11.17.2014
2:35 PM

I love these movie posters for imaginary sequels. Buckaroo Banzai Against the World Crime League was the actual title of the unmade sequel. The poster for The Last Starfighter: Xur’s Revenge is especially cool where the shadow of the game controller forms the Gunstar.

Fri 11.7.2014
11:46 PM

The Alliance of Sound tour is no more. VNV Nation dropped out and were replaced with Front Line Assembly and the tour’s been renamed Eye Vs. Spy. Badass. I like some VNV Nation but I like FLA better. And interestingly, Bill Leeb used to be in Skinny Puppy before leaving in 1986 to form FLA. This’ll be the first time they’ve toured together.

Also, the San Francisco show was moved to the Warfield instead of the Regency Ballroom. I inadvertently waited too long and the Regency was sold out, but at the Warfield I got a front row balcony seat which actually works out better. No more getting stuck behind tall guys for me!

Wed 7.23.2014
10:01 PM

Skinny Puppy just announced the dates for the fall Alliance of Sound tour with Haujobb and VNV Nation. Oh man, 2 tours in 1 year! The San Francisco show is December 19th at the Regency Ballroom.

Mon 4.7.2014
10:05 AM

After not going to concerts for 7 or 8 years I attend 2 in 1 month. Anyway, this time I saw Kraftwerk at the Fox Theater in Oakland. Kraftwerk were doing a 3D concert tour, an extension of the sold-out 8 show retrospective at MoMA in New York.

I was expecting German precision for the 8:00 start time but they actually started around 8:15. Ah well. The lights went down, curtains opened and Kraftwerk was on stage, standing behind consoles and wearing bodysuits with grids on them. They started off with The Robots. I’ve never heard Kraftwerk played so loud before. Projected on a big screen behind them was a 3D movie synchronized to the music. I believe the computer graphics are intentionally retro-looking. Next was Numbers which segued into Computer World. They played extended mixes of some songs like Autobahn and Tour De France and mixed together others. They sounded fantastic. I’ve never seen Kraftwerk perform live before so I don’t know how much is pre-recorded vs. live, but at the end of the show each member did a little “solo” on their equipment and I know Ralf was singing live for some songs. Anyway, it was a great show and I was glad I got to see a legendary band.

Tue 4.1.2014
12:21 AM

Great interview with Annie Atkins, the graphic designer for the Grand Budapest Hotel. Wes Anderson’s films are known for their meticulous design and attention to details and it looks like he went overboard for his newest film. I haven’t seen it yet but I definitely won’t miss it.

12:18 AM

This supercut of gearing up scenes makes me smile. I’m gonna start gearing up when I get ready for work in the morning.

Mon 3.31.2014
8:53 PM

Here’s a very cool short film about the Neon sign makers of Hong Kong, a dying breed. These guys have been making signs by hand for decades and I find it fascinating to watch people who are truly skilled in their craft. The entire site is dedicated to Hong Kong’s neon signage and there’s lots of great photos, essays, and a map in case you want to do a cyberpunkian neon tour of the city.

Thu 3.13.2014
6:25 PM

Mini Metro is a neat minimalist game where you’re tasked with laying out a subway system to serve a city. It looks simple but the difficulty quickly ramps up when you have to juggle station capacity, number of stations on a line, number of cars in a train, etc. You can either play in your browser or it’s free to download for Mac, Windows and Linux.

Mon 3.10.2014
10:04 AM

Fight Club reimagined as an old school beat-’em-up game, like a combination Final Fight/Streets of Rage. There was an actual Fight Club game that came out for PS2 but that was a traditional fighting game like Street Fighter. I can’t believe it’s almost been 15 years since Fight Club was released.

Thu 3.6.2014
2:31 PM

The Skinny Puppy show was amazing. The boys were in top form and sounded fantastic. The opening band, Baal, started promptly at 8:00. I like a punctual band. They were pretty good but they got repetitive after a while, just a lot yelling, screaming and bass. After about half an hour they cleared their equipment off the stage and Skinny Puppy started setting up. Cevin’s keyboards and equipment were on the right side of the stage with a white cloth draped in front, the drums on the left, and in the middle was a box with what looked like blank canvas sides. There were some other props around the stage, a widescreen monitor on the left that was showing video from several small cameras set up around the stage, and there was a big screen behind everything.

Skinny Puppy took the stage just after 9:00 and went straight into Illisit. Ogre came onstage wearing an elaborate costume and holding a machete and an umbrella with a big radiation symbol on it, the video projecting patterns onto the umbrella. It looked so cool. I lost track of the set list but I do remember they played a mix of songs from Weapon and earlier stuff from before Too Dark Park. Ogre changed costumes several times, always wearing twisted masks. There were guys wearing radiation suits and face masks wandering around the stage like they were trying to capture and examine Ogre, and then someone with a red laser came out and chased off Ogre when he got too close. They unfolded the box into a sort of 4-piece Tetris shape with what I realized was a different video from the background video playing on it. Ogre brought out a skinny puppy model at one point and played around with it, then set it on a tall box on the left that had a green, I dunno, sphere or something under it. For another song he played with glowing blue liquid in a bottle. He also sang through a little bullhorn with purple led lights inside it. For the first encore they played Far Too Frail, Glass Houses, Smothered Hope, and Overdose, and for the second encore Assimilate.

Right after Assimilate I went over to the merchandise stand and got a t-shirt and tour poster, and then when I left I got a free Skinny Puppy Fillmore poster. I’ve never been to the Fillmore before but apparently they give out free posters for sold out shows, very cool.

Tue 3.4.2014
1:55 PM

If you have an Oculus Rift dev kit you can now walk around Jerry Seinfeld’s apartment. This guy made a detailed 3d model that you can walk around in. I wonder what he did about the 4th wall that you never see.

On a related note, I don’t get excited about every new gadget that comes out but I am looking forward to the Rift. All the previews I’ve seen look very cool. Seems like technology has finally caught up to what VR promised us in the 90s.

Wed 2.26.2014
10:02 AM

Esquire has a great Oral History of Ghostbusters from most of the cast and crew.

Mon 2.24.2014
10:36 PM

Harold Ramis, Alchemist of Comedy, Dies at 69. Harold Ramis had a very impressive resume: Ghostbusters, Animal House, Caddyshack, Stripes, Back To School, Groundhog Day, Analyze This, National Lampoon’s Vacation. He either wrote or directed some of the greatest comedies of the last 30 years. I grew up watching his movies and I’m sad he’s gone.

2:22 PM

The measuring cup that came with my laundry detergent has lines printed on the inside marked 1, 2, 3, etc. On the instruction label it says, for a regular load, fill the cap to halfway between 3 and 4. Why not just draw the line where they want it and forget this halfway crap? I’m anal about using the precise amount so this really bugs me.