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What. The. Actual. Fuck. ??????!!!?!?!!!

KFC is making a futuristic VR horror experience where you make fried chicken...

If there is any question here, I am reasonably sure the answer is no!


Aug. 7th, 2017 03:14 pm
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Going through some old digital photos looking for something and ran across this... it was taken with my camera, but it seems it was taken by Happy. Yes, that's an elephant. I don't even know ;).

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"the cow's bold postmodernism clashes with the area's traditional suburban aesthetic"
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Ooooo... a Cassini probe Google Doodle today! :-D


Apr. 17th, 2017 04:31 pm
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As I delete my LJ entries from earliest to latest (don't worry, it's all saved to PDF), it is certainly bringing back memories and I do run across the occasional amusement.

A little something from the 2003 "Washington Post Style Invitational" contest. Readers were asked to submit "instructions" for something (anything), written in the style of a famous person. The winning entry was The Hokey Pokey as written by W. Shakespeare:
O proud left foot, that ventures quick within
Then soon upon a backward journey lithe.
Anon, once more the gesture, then begin:
Command sinistral pedestal to writhe.
Commence thou then the fervid Hokey-Poke,
A mad gyration, hips in wanton swirl.
To spin! A wilde release from Heavens yoke.
Blessed dervish! Surely canst go, girl.
The Hoke, the poke -- o banish now thy doubt
Verily, I say, 'tis what it's all about.

— by Jeff Brechlin, Potomac Falls

<grin> that kind of thing makes living worth it don't ya think?
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Most people have heard about the famous quantum physics thought experiment "Schrödinger's Cat": one places a fictitious cat into a sealed box with a quantum random number generator (a radioactive source that decays very slowly, for instance) and a means to kill the cat should some quantum event happen (e.g. that a radioactive decay happens). The Copenhagen Interpretation of quantum mechanics states that the cat, whose state of being alive or dead depends on a quantum process, is therefore both alive and dead at the same time until someone opens up the box and observes the cat, at which point the universe must decide whether the cat is alive or dead (but not until then). No cat has ever been subjected to this "experiment", but it has been done with subatomic particles and particles do exist in superposition (in many states at once) until an observation is made and cause "the wavefunction to collapse" into one state that, if we observe a short time later, will still be in that one state (presumably if we keep looking, it will stay in that state forever unless disturbed somehow). We are trying to build computers based on this principle now (with some success).

Here is one interpretation of that experiment... things... things don't go so well for Schrödinger or the Cat. Wow, this is pretty messed up stuff... but is great animation and storytelling (and a great and amusing, and kind of terrifying, soundscape)!

Dead or alive? Not Dead or Alive...
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It has been a while since I have run across a "dance" performance on YouTube that has truly wowed me, but this really got me excited! It's such a simple concept that could easily be lame, but the dancer's precision and feeling for the "stage" made it a transcendent experience for me. If you click on the video below, there's a brief intro that shows some of the more dramatic moments in the piece. If you would rather skip the spoilers and jump in at the 42s mark, click here.

And then there are FKA Twigs' dance videos, many of which I find quite transgressive in addition to standing out artistically. In the videos, there is often a theme of implied violence or raging passion that somehow remains contained/under tension despite obvious desire to take it further. Her stuff definitely floats my boat!

Ache is one of her earliest works... note the societally ubiquitous "23" ;).

Wet Wipez is more recent and has a larger scope for sure.

I love her music for both as well!
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While much in the way of "music videos" are purely promotional, lack any form of imagination, and remain utterly forgetable; they are sometimes masterworks of visual engagement and storytelling — poetry in and of themselves on top of the music they were produced to live alongside. I have been interested in music videos my whole life (I used to watch the show "The Monkees" when I was young, which featured what can only be called music videos each episode), but for the most part, I saw them as a curiosity rather than a medium for short stories or as a means to engage with the watcher on an emotional level.

Back in the 1980s, I used to go to a club called Barrymore's in Ottawa, Canada that brought in some of the best acts of the day (from Rough Trade to Dread Zeppelin to Gwar... I even saw Hawkwind perform there, and that's another story in itself). At the time, they were one of the only places in Canada that showed music videos on a gorgeous and glorious huge screen with a state of the art (for the time) video projection system. It was revolutionary at the time and while waiting for concerts, I got to see the best videos available (they were curated for merit rather than for commercial purpose). I later made friends with Jeff Green and found out (years after we started hanging out) that he was the one responsible for this presentation that was so ahead of its time (years before MTV or Much Music or such), as he often is. Two videos in particular really changed my view of music videos and what they are capable of: "Age of Loneliness" by the German music project Enigma, and "Shock the Monkey" by UK artist Peter Gabriel.

"Age of Loneliness" took my breath away the first time I saw it, and opened my eyes to the potential of what became an artform to me in that moment. I still watch it often today, and it makes me feel the same way now as it did then. It tells a slice-of-life (death?) story, but more impressively it visually conveys emotion in a way that I associated more with poetry than film or video. For some reason when I see it, it reminds me of one of my favourite movies: "Wings of Desire", probably for its emotional tone. As for "Shock the Monkey", again it tells a story of sorts of spiritual awakening (a more violent and disruptive echo of the same message conveyed in his beautiful and powerful song "Solsbury Hill") as a deadly battle between Gabriel's conscious and unconsious minds. What is particularly interesting about Gabriel's video is that I hated, hated, hated the song! It has been overkilled on the radio and it sounded like so much more pop-infused claptrap to me after about the millionth time hearing it. But... when I saw the video, my mind was officially blown and I had to re-evaluate the song in light of what the video said about the song (that it had meaning that had been inaccessible to me the way I had been exposed to it by that point). I love the song now and consider the album with that song on it one of Gabriel's best (so fsck'ing intense!). I have since gone on to gather collections of innovative music videos — sometimes by musician, sometimes by director — and rummage YouTube and such looking for innovative music videos as time and patience allows (so. much. crap. ugh.). If you have any suggestions for stuff I should look at, please slide it my way :).

And... here they are. Note, the Enigma one is probably a bit NSFW due to near nudity; and the Gabriel one is probably the same due to extreme paganism and psychology, lol ;).

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If you're in the Ottawa area, here is an event to consider... I'm already overwhelmed at the riches being offered and I haven't even registered yet.

The Concept

The human library is a concept of borrowing people instead of books to learn about ideas, cultures, lifestyles, and other life experiences through conversation. It is the coming together of individuals from all walks of life in an open and safe environment.

How does it work?

Instead of taking a book off a shelf to learn something new, you, the ‘Reader,’ will have the opportunity to spend 30 minutes with a ‘Human Book’ who will share their stories, experiences, and knowledge with you.

The link, with a list of all of the ‘Human Books’ who will be present, is here: Indigenous Human Library
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This still makes me gasp even though I know what's coming... the reinterpretation of works of art that were critically dependent on the post-modernist use of technology in their original incarnation, but in a purely human acoustic performance (okay there were microphones and recording equipment... throw me a bone here) never fails to elicit a reaction of hope for our species. Technology is here and continues to outstrip our wildest imaginings or ability to cope with such fundamental and unrelenting dislocations — at ever-increasing speed (ever read Kurzweil's "The Singularity Is Near"?) — that seeing it turned on its head and recommunicated through art means that maybe, just maybe, we haven't outclassed and outmaneuvered ourselves completely.

Another fine example is work by "Dragon House" and its members. Without the advent of modern non-linear digital video editing and advanced abstract computer animation, the sorts of moves they make would probably have never occurred to anyone. Again, they do it live, without any editing at all, or any "special effects" or video enhancements of any type... it's a purely human performance! Oh, and the music choice is awesome too, although it remains highly technological in nature. Perhaps that is one of the things that makes these videos so amazing: humans living with technological innovation without being dominated by it!

p.s. I know this is almost a repeat of a post I made in November last year, but meh... I haz the feels, k?
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In other news... R.I.P. WinAmp... the website reads: and associated web services will no longer be available past December 20, 2013. Additionally, Winamp Media players will no longer be available for download. Please download the latest version before that date. See release notes for latest improvements to this last release. Thanks for supporting the Winamp community for over 15 years.

It remains the most functional media player I've ever used, and the visualizations (especially those by Geiss) still blow away everyone I show it to in 2013. At the time, it revolutionized online listening of music and it still has every feature I've ever wanted in a player in a way that made sense to me (all the other players I've used blew chucks for some major reason or another). AOL gave one month's notice that the software will no longer be available after December 20th, 2013 and even the website will forever go dark that day. I could scarcely believe my eyes (it didn't help that the last release they are doing has been labelled version 5.666), but I've checked various news sources and it appears that it's true. Sigh... I use it to put together my radio show each week and it even generates my playlists that I take with me into the studio (I get one copy, my co-host gets one copy). Sigh. There is a petition asking AOL to release it open source, but AOL has not even responded to requests for statements from media outlets much less WinAmp afficianados... and such is the nature of proprietary software, they can do what they want with it, how they want with it.

I will miss the traditional first clip played with every upgrade:

"Winamp, it really whips the llama's ass!"

And here is a sample of the Milkdrop 2.0 visualizer that came with it (developed by Geiss, who now works on the Google Glass project, fyi)... it was hand-coded for performance and is in a class of its own. The thing to keep in mind is what you see is programmatic... it responds to the content of the music in real time and generates the visual dynamically with no human input as the music plays. I consider this to be one of the most important pieces of art meets technology of the past 20 years. Your mileage/opinion may vary, but I'd love to see evidence to the contrary if it exists (seriously, I'd love to see it, I'm a lover of art meets technology as anyone who has read my stuff for any amount of time would know). Oh, the original Milkdrop source was made available under the BSD license in 2005 and Milkdrop 2.0 was released in 2007 as part of WinAmp... funny enough, the source for Milkdrop 2.0 was released on May 15th, 2013... coincidence? Perhaps not...

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This is officially the best thing on the Internet at the moment:

For a chance to try it interactively for yourself (seriously, it's the official William Shatner application): Shatoetry!!!

p.s. reality is stranger than fiction, you can't make this shit up...

Quo vadis?

Nov. 25th, 2011 04:24 pm
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To quote Asterix & Obelix... ;)

I have been so slammed since I've been back at school this fall. I was so ahead of the curve before things got started, but have been off balance since the the lightning strike at the end of the summer. I'm not traumatized by it per se, but that sort of thing is going to have an effect to say the least. Probably more damaging to my poise has been issues with my older daughter and my Electromagnetics physics course that was dominating the number of hours I spent on my studies (I've since dropped it, but not until after the damage was done and I've been playing catch-up since). I'm not planning on becoming a lot more vocal online yet (assignments are still due and finals are impending), but I thought I should at least start the process since I think it's going to be important to me to pick things up on the blogging front... I have a lot to share and really need to write some of this stuff down to work through it.

In the meantime, I thought I would share a pair of videos that show superhuman skills. The first is a dance video. I know a lot of belly dancers, but the muscle isolation this guy shows is like nothing I've ever seen before. The second one is not just an incredible mastery of guitar techniques, but also of rhythm and beautiful vocals. Truly mind blowing and inspiring stuff!

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Here's the playlist, etc. for my eleventh show (Apr. 25, 2011). However, despite the fact there is apparently no host for "Mid-Day Mind Control" which runs after "The Dollar Bin", I was only able to do my show because I had a doctor's appointment lined up (I did something to my foot... nothing serious, but I wanted it looked at). Since nobody showed up, and dead air is not acceptable in my books, I threw on the Delerium album "Poem" on continuous play and repeat in hopes that there was enough diversity to catch the attention of anyone tuning in that hour before I headed off. As a reminder, my show is broadcast live and prone to random chaos every Monday (woot!) from 2PM to 3PM (Eastern Time) on 93.1FM in Ottawa or streaming audio on You can always go here to find out when the next show will be (or read my playlists). Of this show, I wrote:
The show was divided mostly into funk and electronica with some Charlatans 'UK' and off the beaten path Sugar Ray tossed in for seasoning. Glad I finally got to play some Neotropic on one of my shows, it just didn't fit into any other mix so I jumped at the chance to sandwich it between a couple of Cygnus X tracks.
I did the "distributed spotlight" thing again where I have tracks for the spotlight band spread over the course of the show. I thought it worked out well, and as I said, finally allowed me to play some Neotropic. The show started with a track off one of the albums that started me on my fascination with dollar bin albums: Greazy Meal's "Digitalize World Greaze". When I lived in Charlotte, North Carolina for a year, I found a record store called Manifest Disks that had an awesome used CD section... everything from 808 State to Sarah MacLachlan for awesome prices... and their new CD section was one of the most eclectic and diverse I've ever seen. They also got indie acts to play in the middle of the store every few weeks... the sort of thing that Ottawa is sorely lacking, I might add. Along the side of the used section, they had half a dozen tables, several square metres, of used CDs for between 1 and 5 dollars. I decided to flip through them (I was a bit broke at the time and was hankerin' for new music), and I figured with prices like that at worst I was buying some coasters, so I picked up five albums for a dollar each, and one for 2 dollars. I was surprised that some of the albums were excellent, and that all of them were good. All of the albums were from artists that I would not have pulled off the shelf new because I didn’t know any of them at all. I also played a track off a little gem I found: Hal, off their "Extremis" single, which features the voice of Gillian Anderson (Agent Scully from the X-Files). And I also decided to play another of my favourite tracks on the "wtf" section of the show: "Buffalo Wing Pizza" by Greazy Meal, where they recorded a guy trying to order that from a pizzeria. Very funny!
Greazy Meal, Digitalize World Greaze, "Vitamin U (The 8th Essential Remix plus Iron)"
Hal, Extremis (CD single), "Extremis (Qattara Remix Edit feat. Gillian Anderson)"Cygnus X, Hypermetrical, "Kinderlied Part I"
Neotropic, 15 Levels of Magnification, "Laundry Pt. 3"
Cygnus X, Hypermetrical, "Hypermetrical"
Greazy Meal, Digitalize World Greaze, "Buffalo Wing Pizza (Bonus Track)"
Green Room, Funk It Up For The Universe, "New Mother"
The Charlatans UK, The Only One I Know (CD single), "The Only One I Know"
Sugar Ray, 14:59, "Personal Space Invader"
Cygnus X, Hypermetrical, "Inda Kasa"
Cygnus X began as a collaboration between Matthias Hoffmann and Ralf Hildenbeutel, who later left and everything after was just Hoffman. Other projects of the pair include A.C. Boutsen, Brainchild, and Dee.FX. Their first release was "Superstring" in 1993. Their third trance track, "The Orange Theme", released in 1994, was the project's best received track. Their releases "Positron" and "Hypermetrical" became also well known hits of the genre. Pretty much a one gig wonder, although they released a “collected works” album in 2003. A the UK electronic music artist Riz Maslen with as Neotropic off her 1995 album "15 Levels Of Magnification". She has released almost a dozen recordings under the Neotropic moniker and another half dozen as Small Fish With Spine, and appears to be still active in making and recording music. Oh, and if that wasn’t enough, she also makes films. I really liked Green Room, but could not find much info about them other than they were Canadian and from the west coast. Good funk!

And that was it this time around. I like the lyrical hook in this one after about 2:20!

And how about a bit of Can-Con? Not Sugar Ray, but rather Big Sugar (notice what I did there? lol)... love this song, and they have the coolest bass player of all time!

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Here's the playlist, etc. for my TENTH show (Apr. 11, 2011)... which also went for a double shift because there is apparently no host for "Mid-Day Mind Control" which runs after "The Dollar Bin" (and who am I to turn down an hour of "play whatever I bloody feel like or even pull CDs at random from the library" radio?!?!). As a reminder, my show is broadcast live and prone to mind-altering chaos every second Monday (until April 25th, then it will be going WEEKLY, woot!) from 2PM to 3PM (Eastern Time) on 93.1FM in Ottawa or streaming audio on You can always go here to find out when the next show will be (or read my playlists). Of this show, I wrote:
As is often the case, many of the bands that end up in the dollar bin only recorded the one commercial album and then disappeared, we certainly had more than our fair share of it this time around. Not bad, but singular. Conversely, there was no excuse for Lucas to release the crap he did (his first album was kinda fun). Show had two primary sets... one "alt rock" and the other was funk. Just 'cause. Ended with some angry music... 'cause I'm angry at politics these days.
One fun thing that happened is a couple of the "kids" who were working at cataloguing new CDs and adding them to the library came into the booth while BKS was playing and said it sounded really cool, and asked what it was. Definitely a good track of that album (not quite so formulaic techno as much of the rest of it). And that about sums it all up, so here is the playlist for The Dollar Bin:
Baba, Mind Music, "Why (Part I)"
BKS, Astroplane, "Kenya Chill"
Baba, Mind Music, "Why (Part II)"
Groovenics, Groovenics, "Chopsticks"
Baby Animals, Shaved And Dangerous, "Backbone"
Mad At Gravity, Resonance, "Run For Cover"
Amazing Device, The Quiet Room, "Secret (feat. Ian Watkins)"
Lucas, To Rap My World Around You, "Storm Warning"
Folkswaggin', Psychefolkadelic, "Simple Things"
Baba, Mind Music, "X-Perience"
Galactic, Vintage Reserve, "Doublewide"
Baba, Mind Music, "Why (Part III)"
Found Dead Hanging, Dulling Occam's Razor, "A .45 Calibre Defribulator: A Prototype Of Sorts"
As you can see, I interspersed the "spotlight" with other tracks throughout the show. The "Why (Part ?)" were spoken word and beatboxing with didgeridoo and flute. Not typical hip-hop/rap, pretty cool stuff. "X-Perience" was a full music track by Baba. A review of Baba by Michael Gowan stated: "This is not gangsta rap or hip-hop-hurray rap; this is philosopher rap. Similar to the styles of De La Soul and Black Eyed Peas, Baba is more likely to wax poetic about the promise of the examined life than glorify misogyny or drug pushing. The NYC-based rapper shows how exposure and openness to a wide range of musical influences can meld into one complex style." Definitely the case, and I'm keeping my eye out for other albums by this guy! So that was The Dollar Bin... this was my spontaneous set for "Mid-Day Mind Control" (of which I stated, Loud and angry to aetherial and beautiful. Fasten your mindbelts for the ride):
Rage Against The Machine, The Matrix Soundtrack, "Wake Up"
My Life With The Thrill Kill Cult, Kooler Than Jesus, "The Devil Does Drugs"
Nash The Slash, Children Of The Night, "Wolf"
Bjork, Post, "Army Of Me"
Filter, Short Bus, "Hey Man Nice Shot"
Propellerheads, The Matrix Soundtrack, "Spybreak"
Goldfrapp, Black Cherry, "Hairy Trees"
Goldfrapp, Supernature, "You Never Know"
Baba, Mind Music, "Beatbox Logic"
Heh, couldn't help but play "Beatbox Logic", such a good track! Kicked off things with Rage... still in a political mood: WAKE UP!!! Sheesh, never has it been truer that "people get the government they deserve"... the Conservatives formed the government (twice) since the last election with less than 20% support from eligible voters... mostly because the winner in the last election was "I don't fucking care about my future or the future of my fellow citizens enough to get off my pimply lard ass and go to the polls to vote once every couple of years". And for everyone who is whining that having another election this year is a waste of money, that's the way democracy is supposed to work: a government with such a low percentage of popular support that doesn't give a rats ass about working with the other parties is supposed to fall. BTW, if you don't vote, don't talk to me until next election about how badly thing suck in Canada, that's the one privilege your vote will get you. Hmmm... apparently I'm opinionated on a particular topic ;). I did tell people to vote on the show, but made no partisan declarations on the air (frankly, if the Conservatives get in because a large enough number of Canadians want them, I'll accept that, but that clearly hasn't been the case). So, back to the music... one other thing of note was that I played Björk's "Army Of Me", which was part of the soundtrack of the movie "Sucker Punch"... a film that I liked quite a bit (and which the women I saw it with said they found empowering, not oppressive). And a movie that is certainly divisive. I asked for people to call in and state their opinion of it on the air, but nobody did (is anyone ever listening? lol), so I invite you to state your opinion of the movie here... but only if you've seen it. The strongest criticism I've heard has come from people who have based their opinion on a couple of reviews and a trailer or two... and I have a problem with that. P.S. If you are going to see it, Imax makes a big difference to the film (where it doesn't for many others I find)!

So, here's my favourite of the TV trailers for "Sucker Punch" (that I thought best captured the spirit of the film, the rest really irritated me):

And here's a mind-blowing (seriously, it'll fry your noodle) video for "The Devil Does Drugs" using scenes from the absolutely amazing animated film "Paprika" (which I would recommend if you haven't seen it yet... opening sequence is here, wow):

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Here's the playlist, etc. for my ninth show (Mar. 28, 2011)... which also went for a double shift because there is apparently no host for "Mid-Day Mind Control" which runs after "The Dollar Bin". Now, I have to come clean here... it's the end of the term and I've been seriously fried. So fried that I forgot that I had to do my show until an hour before it was time to go on air! Praise be to Harris (a co-op über student from Waterloo [Engineering] that I've been working with over the past few months in the labs at Carleton) for loaning me his USB stick so I could pull the show together as well as I did. Thankfully I'm also a techno wienie and have an Internet server in my living room that I use as my web and file server that I was able to pull MP3 off of (I rip my CDs as I get them so I can listen to them easily for pleasure and for picking for the show, but use the CDs themselves when I go to air). This show was all MP3s... and all things considered, I thought it turned out pretty well. Instead of a spotlight per se (I had some of the show already picked out), I did a mini-spotlight where I played two songs (by Canada's Crash Vegas and Iceland's The Sugarcubes) that always reminded me of each other (even thought they don't really sound the same). They do lead nicely from one to the other though: "Moving Too Fast" to "Motorcrash", heh. As a reminder, my show is broadcast live and prone to mind-altering chaos every second Monday (until April 25th, then it will be going WEEKLY, woot!) from 2PM to 3PM (Eastern Time) on 93.1FM in Ottawa or streaming audio on You can always go here to find out when the next show will be (or read my playlists). Of this show, I wrote:
From art house to a full punk set and songs that kinda sound the same to songs that are radically different. More music less talk today and awesome music from end to end.
Now, to my credit, I'd already picked the Skirt, Speedbumps, and Pablo's Eye tracks to play and had the punk set pretty much together with The Marshes, 7 Seconds, and O-Matic (loooove that track!), and had flagged the Chimera tracks for eventual play (they just got lumped in because it was easier)... but I had to put the rest of the tracks together from memory and then had to do the "research" for the tracks "on the fly" as I did my show... yikes! Live radio indeed! Without further ramblings, here is the playlist for The Dollar Bin:
Pablo's Eye, Grass of '96, "Les Larmes du Tigre"
Pablo's Eye, Grass of '96, "Gone By Night"
The Marshes, Grass of '96, "Offshore"
Suicidal Tendencies, Join The Church of Suicidal, "War In My Head"
7 Seconds, The Music The Message, "The Kids Are United"
O-Matic, Grass of '96, "No Pinky, No Leather"
Crash Vegas, Red Earth, "Moving Too Fast"
The Sugarcubes, Life's Too Good, "Motorcrash"
Skirt, Choking On Sugar, "Speed Under Her Feet"
Cosmik Connection, Electrojazzset, "Rootsman"
Baba, Mind Music, "Mind Music"
Chimera, Grass of '96, "Catch Me"
Chimera, Grass of '96, "Night Song"
Speedbumps, Crayon Box, "Thursday's Chicken"
The Pablo's Eye tracks were particularly interesting... beautifully arthouse/creative. I tried to look for tracks on the Intertubes to listen to, but nothing was quite as good as the ones that were on the Grass Records label sampler. The Cosmik Connection track, "Rootsman", was pretty sweet as well! And then my spontaneous (read: panicked) play list I put together for "Mid-Day Mind Control" on the fly:
Paddy Ryan, Chain Link Fence, "Rise"
Kurt Swinghammer, Vostok 6, "Dark"
Pomplamoose, Pomplacovers, "La Vie En Rose"
Pomplamoose, Pomplacovers, "Single Ladies (Put A Ring On It)"
Jarett Norton and Danny Dodge, N/A, "Death Metal Friday"
Triptaka, Second War, "Suspended"
Ancient Obliteration, A Menacing Reality, "Radiated Overlords"
Voivod, Nothingface, "Astronomy Domine"
Beautiful Nubia and Roots Renaissance Band, Sun No Dey Sleep, "Eyes Always Open"
Tru Rez Crew, I'm A Lucky One, "I'm A Lucky One"
Now, I was a little punchy I think and played a few wtf tracks for sure (notably "La Vie En Rose" and "Death Metal Friday", lol... and threatened listeners with more of the same if they didn't call in with requests... nobody did so either: nobody was listening, or people actually enjoyed that shit, heh). There was a bit of a "prog rock" opening to the show. I wanted to allow Paddy Ryan to redeem himself after the "throw me on the floor and group fuck me" incident when we played a track at random off his album (eep... the only track on they album like it, of course). Kurt Swinghammer's album "Vostok 6" is one of my favorite albums of all time (a tribute concept album to cosmonaut Валентина Терешкова [Valentina Tereshkova]) and it was great to play a track off of it. My friend Robotika pointed out "Death Metal Friday" and it was too good (read: bad) not to inflict share with people (look it up on YouTube... well worth the visit, heh). I am also glad I played Tru Rez Crew (awesome aboriginal band) and you can't go wrong with Montreal's Voivod. The Triptaka, Ancient Obliteration, and Beautiful Nubia and Roots Renaissance Band were all new Canadian CDs that I pulled at semi-random (I didn't know what they sounded like before I played them)... awesome stuff as usual! The Ancient Obliteration album was particularly wack with track titles like "Pagan Rape" and "Seeking the Slimegod" I read the lyrics for the track I played at least before I spun it ;). Well, always eager to promote Canadian bands... I'll leave you with one Ancient Obliteration track ("Portal Beast (live)" ... maybe this will help dispel the notion that Canadians are "nice") and one from The Dollar Bin band Chimera, "Night Song"... there are so many bands and albums and tracks named "Chimera" that this stuff is almost impossible to find in the noise ;).

Not all Canadians are "nice":

These people are nice, but they're not Canadian:

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Here's the playlist, etc. for my eighth show (Mar. 14, 2011)... which also went for a double shift because there is apparently no host for "Mid-Day Mind Control" which runs after "The Dollar Bin". Once again, I was joined by my younger daughter Laura who was off from school that day. Again, she proved remarkable in her adaptability to a live radio environment and comported herself with a professionalism that belies her age (she just turned 15, fyi, earlier in April!). As a reminder, my show is broadcast live and prone to mind-altering chaos every second Monday from 2PM to 3PM (Eastern Time) on 93.1FM in Ottawa or streaming audio on You can always go here to find out when the next show will be (or read my playlists). Of this show, I wrote:
Most tracks chosen by Laura who is on March Break from Canterbury HS... from the emo to the more emo and plenty of pop and rock. Nana korobi, ya oki. Our thoughts and prayers went out today to the people of Japan reeling from a 9.0 magnitude earthquake, tsunamis, over 10000 dead, and the meltdown of multiple nuclear reactors.
Yes, the Great Northeast Earthquake had just occurred and the initial reports of scores dead from the earthquake itself (which was amazing and hopeful given the power of the thing) was giving way to reports of tens of thousands likely dead from the tsunami that followed (some of which were found to have been over 37 metres (!!!) high as they swept inland). In parallel with the devastation of entire cities, was a further tragedy what would evolve into the worst nuclear disaster since Chernobyl because of the failure of the Fukushima Daichi nuclear station (which is a situation still out of control as I write this). We dedicated the last track of The Dollar Bin to the victims in Japan, and Laura said a few words in Japanese to the effect of "fall down seven times, get up eight times". The "fromage" track (Landscape) did talk about the nuclear issue, but more from a Cold War perspective. With regards to the show's overall contents, from the written part of the script (critical for when there are more than one, even if it's sparse in places, it keeps us on track and we can fill in on the fly), I had the following to say:
Reading Week has come and gone at Carleton, but it was pointed out to me a few days ago that it’s March Break for the high schools in Ottawa this week. To that end I'm joined again by Laura Kurosakura, a Canterbury High School student, who will be co-hosting the show today. Welcome back Laura [Laura says hello]. I've invited her back because she did a bang up job last time and she has demonstrated her appreciation for the musically unexpected. I asked her to pick a few tracks off my dollar bin collection and she came back with two-thirds of the show, including a spotlight on Plexi. To her credit, as she searched through the collection, she randomly ran across it, and although she'd never heard the band before, after listening to a few tracks and doing some research on this rather unusual band, she asked if we could do the spotlight on them. Well, sure I say! I'd listened through it myself a while back and liked what I heard, but didn’t know anything about the band. [...]

Now I have to say I had absolutely nothing to do with the choice of music, I wasn't even there when she was doing it, and I don't think she heard my last show... but Laura somehow chose the song that I kicked my last show off with. Well, not this version of the song, rather it was the 4-track demo for it that I found on a compilation. Yes, none other than London, England's Elastica. Together from '92 to 2001 with two album releases. They were a mainstay of indie and alternative radio at the time, and remain one of my favourites. I had been planning to play this particular track myself on one of my shows, but apparently, out of the thousands of songs you could have chosen, you picked "Blue" by Elastica. "You're a little scary sometimes, you know that? Brilliant... but scaaary."
Heh. Without further delay or ramblings, here is the playlist for The Dollar Bin:
Soul Coughing, Songs In The Key of X, "Unmarked Helicopter"
The Hunger, Cinematic Superthug, "Phoenix"
Elastica, Elastica, "Blue"
Boo, Oh Yah! Records Sampler, "Johnny"
Downstroke, Distorted Sunshine, "Wednesday Again"
Plexi, Cheer Up, "Forest Ranger"
Plexi, Cheer Up, "Dayglo"
Plexi, Cheer Up, "Fourget"
Landscape, Electricity: 18 Synth Pop Hits, "Einstein A Go-Go"
Mosquitos, Planet Buzz, "Boombox"
Jane Siberry, No Borders Here, "Mimi On The Beach"
Machete Avenue, Make Trade Fair, "Cut To Pieces"
We then spontaneously put together what I thought was a great show for Mid-Day Mind Control:
Filter, Songs In The Key of X, "Thanks Bro"
Ultravox, Electricity: 18 Synth Pop Hits, "The Thin Wall"
Goldfrapp, Winter Chill 2, "Utopia"
The Verve, Urban Hymns, "Bittersweet Symphony"
The Cure, Galore, "Pictures Of You"
Foo Fighters, Songs In The Key of X, "Down In The Park"
Emily Haines & The Soft Skeleton, Knives Don't Have Your Back, "Crowd Surf Off A Cliff"
Our Lady Peace, Gravity, "Innocent"
Garbage, Absolute Garbage, "The World Is Not Enough"
Daft Punk, Harder Better Faster Stronger 2008 (Alive Club Mixes), "Harder Better Faster Stronger 2008 (Alive Club Mix)"
Great Big Sea, Play, "Ordinary Day"
Goodnight Nurse, Our Song, "Milkshake"
The Emily Haines and Great Big Sea were both requests (woot! callers!) and Laura picked the last song of the show, and I just about pissed myself it was so funny (2 hours in "the booth" and I gotta go pretty bad... especially since I usually buy a coffee just before going in, heh). And on that note, I hope you find it as funny as I did... warm it up, the boys are waiting... hahaha they didn't even change the lyrics, ftw!

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Since I have a relatively decent Intertubes connection finally, and I wanted to share one of these with a friend, I have posted the MP3s for an EP I released on CD back in 2008 as “Tin Ape” (with a bonus track from 2010). Free music. Naughty album cover. Hope you enjoy!

Tin Ape: Impudent Simian EP
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Here's the playlist, etc. for my seventh show (Feb. 28, 2011)... which also went for a double shift despite the fact that it is rumoured there is apparently finally a new host for "Mid-Day Mind Control" which runs after "The Dollar Bin". I did the last two shows with co-hosts but was solo once again for this one. I survived the hellish nightmare that was February... basically doing the equivalent of 7 courses at once... and then was sick for pretty much the whole first week of March. I'm guessing my body just said fuck you (with the aid of some sort of virus) and shut down until I'd had enough rest. I did manage to get this show done (despite a rather noticeable snowstorm that made travel in Ottawa more than a little difficult) before heading home and staying there until Friday.

As a reminder, my show is broadcast live and prone to mind-altering chaos every second Monday from 2PM to 3PM (Eastern Time) on 93.1FM in Ottawa or streaming audio on You can always go here to find out when the next show will be (or read my playlists). Of this show, I wrote:
From the ultra rare (Elastica) to the impossibly good for only $0.50 (the Baba album... seriously a favourite find); from power pop to chip music and classic bar bands; there's always something good waiting for the adventurous listener in The Dollar Bin.
I was glad to be able to play a little more Canadian content on this one and did a spotlight on one of the ultimate Canadian bands: the Odds.
The Odds are a textbook case of what it takes to be successful as a Canadian band in our rather unforgiving musical landscape. The band was formed in ’87 in Vancouver, consisting of vocalist-guitarists Craig Northey and Steven Drake (both of whom had led different bands appearing on a Vancouver music compilation album, Spotlight '86), bassist Doug Elliott and drummer Paul Brennan. In the late 80s, the band played four nights a week as a 60s and 70s cover band called Dawn Patrol, while playing as the Odds on weekends and funding their own demo recordings, hoping for a break. The band members claim the name came when Brennan asked Drake, in a town somewhere on the BC coast, "What are the odds of us ever escaping bullshit gigs like this?" They traveled to Los Angeles doing showcases and eventually signed to Zoo Entertainment.

They released their debut self-produced album, Neopolitan, in ‘91, which spawned the radio hits "Love Is the Subject" and "King of the Heap". A third single, the sexually explicit "Wendy Under the Stars", failed to chart, but attracted the attention of a music critic for its unusual homage to Elvis, and the band was subsequently picked up by Warren Zevon, becoming his touring band for his album Mr. Bad Example. They released a followup album in ‘93 and began a somewhat controversial ongoing collaboration with the members of Kids In The Hall which continues to this day. During the recording of the album we’re listening to, Good Weird Feeling, their drummer left and joined Big Sugar and he was replaced by Pat Steward. The album went on to be their most commercially successful one. They did one more album in ‘96 called “Nest” and then broke up in ‘99 (releasing a singles compilation album in 2000). They got back together in 2007 to play on a music themed cruise in the Caribbean put together by the Bare Naked Ladies, and went on to record an album in 2008 and, after re-securing the rights to their material, they released an EP in 2009 and have started touring again.
I also had a wonderful treat with an ultra-rare in the form of a 4-track demo track from Elastica. I've been listening to it at home over and over and was happy to be able to share on The Dollar Bin. I have to say that Baba knocked my socks off as well... beatboxing, flute, and digeridoo... mind blowing (been listening to that too)! Without further adieu, here is the playlist for The Dollar Bin:
Elastica, Buy-Product 2: Brief Encounters, "Blue (Donna's 4-Track Demo)"
Camus, Sins Of The Father, "Send Her My Love"
Southern Culture On The Skids, Buy-Product 2: Brief Encounters, "Red Beans n' Reverb"
Fordirelifesake, Dance Pretend Forget Defend, "From Tragedy To Imaginary"
Baba, Mind Music, "Beatbox Logic"
Camus, Sins Of The Father, "Ouch"
Odds, Good Weird Feeling, "Mercy To Go"
Odds, Good Weird Feeling, "Leave It There"
Odds, Good Weird Feeling, "Eat My Brain"
Odds, Good Weird Feeling, "The Last Drink"
Stoa, Seireenia, "Maare Illuscend"
Liquified, 13 Methods of Hallucination, "Tiny Spacey"
For "Mid-Day Mind Control", I actually had someone call in with a request :)... for Root Boy Slim's "Dare To Be Fat" or The Bangles' "Walk Like An Egyptian". Well, I kinda played both... mwahahaha... got the first and decided to mix it up a little and play The Cleverlys' version of the Bangles song... yeah... I guess I'll post the video below... has to be seen to be believed (although their version of "Hocus Pocus" by Focus is a masterpiece of surrealist performance art). I also played one of my favourites... Captured! By Robots, off their album fully titled "The Musical Version of The Movie Version of The Ten Commandments"... where The Cleverlys are twisted, Captured! By Robots is a full on mindfuck... one guy and all the rest of the band are robots he built after being thrown out of a ska band. Okay... that's going to be the bonus video (I can't not post something of his)! Oh, and I also played a couple of tracks off the amazing soundtrack to the new Tron movie. I was really worried that Daft Punk would screw up it up (and I'm a Daft Punk fan), but they nailed it completely. Nice! Anyway, here's the playlist:
Morcheeba, The Antidote, "Ten Men"
Eurythmics, Greatest Hits, "It's Alright (Baby's Coming Back)"
Captured! By Robots, The Ten Commandments, "Nefritiri Sex Jam"
Root Boy Slim, YouTube Video, "Dare To Be Fat"
Chumbawamba, Tubthumper, "Smalltown"
Metric, Live It Out, "Monster Hospital"
The Cleverlys, YouTube Video, "Walk Like An Egyptian"
Beck, Buy-Product 2: Brief Encounters, "Novocaine"
Daft Punk, Tron Legacy Soundtrack, "The Grid"
Daft Punk, Tron Legacy Soundtrack, "The Son Of Flynn"
Chumbawamba, Readymades, "Sewing Up Crap"
Chumbawamba, Readymades, "All In Vain"
And here are ... the videos:

For all y'all foreign types with yer hookie pipes...

And Captured! By Robots... I fucking love this guy!!! In this video, he's playing Moses, the OTOG: the "Old Testament Original Gangster" as he says on his album ;).

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Here's the playlist, etc. for my sixth show (Feb. 14, 2011)... which also went for a double shift because there is apparently no host for "Mid-Day Mind Control" which runs after "The Dollar Bin". This particular show was special because it was both a Valentines Day show and because I was joined by my older daughter Morgan for her radio debut!!! Now both of my offspring have now co-hosted my show... just to show I don't play favourites — who went first was simply a matter of timing and convenience (Laura had a day off from school Jan. 31st, so she went first). Both did awesome jobs, each in a different way, and both took to their airwaves like they were meant to be there! Morgan's advantage over her sister, albeit a temporary one, is that she has a much more mature sounding voice (Morgan is 17 and Laura is 14) and could easily do professional radio or voice work (and I'm trying to convince her to at least explore voice work).

As a reminder, my show is broadcast live and prone to mind-altering chaos every second Monday from 2PM to 3PM (Eastern Time) on 93.1FM in Ottawa or streaming audio on You can always go here to find out when the next show will be (or read my playlists). Of this show, I wrote:
Music chosen by Morgan. Although we played Bobby McFerrin, the condition was that we NOT play *that* song. Sadly, since that conversation the song was stuck in my head... hopefully you faired better than I... Other than that, this was a wonderfully diverse and varied show with music from country to straight up punk.
I was particularly surprised and interested by her choice of Bobby McFerrin for the "spotlight". He is certainly a brilliant musician, but not too many people appreciate that fact or have heard anything but his "one hit song". Frankly, his rendition of "Sunshine Of Your Love" is truly a thing of wonder! Without further adieu, here is the playlist for The Dollar Bin:
Magnapop, Rubbing Doesn't Help, "Down On Me"
Llama Farmers, El Toppo, "You Bore Me"
Ohm-G, Voodoo Roux Deux, "Coming Down"
Mad At Gravity, Resonance, "Time And Time Again"
Speedbumps, Crayon Box, "Street Sign Man"
Dead Roses, I Hate It Here, I Never Want To Leave, "I Death You To Death!"
Butch Willis, 1996 Teenbeat Sampler, "Mummies Don't Die"
Bobby McFerrin, Simple Pleasures, "All I Want"
Bobby McFerrin, Simple Pleasures, "Drive My Car"
Bobby McFerrin, Simple Pleasures, "Sunshine Of Your Love"
The Cosmos, Sort Of, Kind Of, Not Really, But Badly Executed By..., "What's Black And White"
Left Front Tire, 42 Ways To Lose A Friend, "For What It Means"
Downstroke, Distorted Sunshine, "You Might Like It"
Monostar, The Airport, "Bahamas Heavy!"
We started out the show by my talking about the problem of racism we faced living in North Carolina and how it was much more overt there than it is here (it's still a problem here, it's just more subtle and subversive) and how Morgan had a vision for a short film that used the Magnapop song as its soundtrack (the film was to be more of a music video with a story). She then read: Imagine a slave woman on a plantation working in the field with her baby wailing from the hot sun on it's tender skin. She hears the baby wailing but cannot comfort it for fear of stopping her work and being whipped for it. Later she expresses her growing hatred and frustration by burning down her master's house and walking away from all of the pain. "You Can't See My Anger/You Can Only Feel It." I can't find a link to the song anywhere, so you'll have to take my word that it works really well as an idea and that it's powerful to hold that image listening to the music.

And then, the spontaneous playlist for Mid-Day Mind Control... this is where Morgan's creativity really came to the fore when she spontaneously suggested after playing the B-52's song "Juliet Of The Spirits" (my request) and Sister Soleil's "Liar" (her request) that we had embarked on an exploration of relationships and that we would continue the rest of the show examining various aspects of that theme. As I wrote on the playlist notes: We did all the facets of valentines: from love to breakup, from creepy to the innocent, from the stalker to the couple. From the passion of relationships to the passion of art and creativity. A wonderful moment of spontaneous radio (and a kickass set of music to boot)!
B-52's, Funplex, "Juliet Of The Spirits"
Sister Soleil, Soularium, "Liar"
Art Of Noise, The Seduction of Claude Debussy, "The Holy Egoism Of Genius"
Evelyn Evelyn, Evelyn Evelyn, "Elephant Elephant"
Don Felder, Heavy Metal Soundtrack, "Heavy Metal (Takin' A Ride)"
Seal, Seal, "Show Me"
Pomplamoose, Pomplacovers, "Single Ladies (Put A Ring On It)"
Kurt Swinghammer, Vostok 6, "Valentina"
Pomplamoose, Pomplasongs, "If You Think You Need Some Lovin"
Neutralizing Force, This Is What We Do!!!, "Two Plus Two Makes Four"
We actually had two separate and independent requests for Pomplamoose (?!?!) and played ones that tied into the theme of the show. I was also blown away by Morgan's decision to play the extremely flippant "Elephant Elephant" song immediately after the very serious "The Holy Egoism Of Genius", but she explained it (on air) as being an amazing example of the holy egoism of genius in the guise of Amanda Palmer and Jason Webley. It was also funny in that when the next host came in shortly before 4PM, the song "Two Plus Two Makes Four" was playing. It's a "chip music" composition (I'm a huge fan of chip music!!!) and he asked what 70s album it was from... well, it's off a 2005 compilation that a friend of mine had a song on (Ad·ver·sary)... ah, the old is new again :).

And here's a video of a live performance of "The Holy Egoism Of Genius" (and if you want to follow it up with "Elephant Elephant", it's here, heh).


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