Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Shirley Skeel's anti fat article

This article drove me crazy this morning. I can't stand it when people feel the need to use conjecture and end up totally off the mark. This writer feels that if everyone were thin the world would be a better place. We would use less fossil fuel, the airlines would not be failing, health care would be fixed and in her own words "Either way, a slimmer society would, arguably, seem to be more secure and content.". This kind of happy go lucky irresponsible borderline eugenics drives me crazy. I could go on, but just read the article for your self. I think I need to go to and eat something.

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Perfect from now on

So the other day I was looking at a post on Pitchfork about the line up for the upcoming All Tomorrow's Parties and saw that several bands were playing sets of complete albums. Most of them were bands I liked or had seen in the past. One was Built to Spill playing "Perfect from now on".

I thought that might be a cool set to catch. Now I don't ever really travel to see shows. I might catch something in another city if I'm there, maybe check ahead of time to see who's playing and if anyone I know is playing to say hello. But I don't plan trips around that, and I don't like festival shows as a rule.

Still I looked at the overall line up and thought I might want to see some if not all of the bands playing.

I picked up my Ipod and scrolled down to Built to Spill. The record wasn't on my Ipod. Now I don't have all of Built to Spills records, but I knew I had listened to that one over and over. Then I realized I had never bought it on CD. I had owned a tape of it. I became lost in the switch over to the digital age. So I went out the other night and got a new copy to add to my Ipod.

It is still a masterpiece. The guitars float back and forth melodies combining in that magical way only music from the past does. Reminding me of the years that have past.

I don't think I will be going to the show, I saw them play this record live when it came out, but I am glad of the reminder and the visit of some music from my past.

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Cater

Hi Cater!!! Nice new collar.

Blitz


Blitz is my friend's new German Shepard puppy. He is tiny. For now!!!

Online gear shopping

Here is a list of some of my favorite places to shop for gear online.

Analogue Haven is a great site for new modular synths, boutique guitar pedals, and harder to find digital synths. They are very helpful by email and have a fast shipping. This is the site I hit first when looking for modular synth items that I can't buy directly from the synth maker.

Big City Music is another great place for modular and analog synths. They carry some pedals and synths that Analogue Haven doesn't so I usually check both depending on what I'm looking for.

Audio Midi is great for more mainstream gear and high end synth gear.

Sweetwater is where I go when I'm not shopping at Musicians Friend .

The Noiseguide has user reviews of almost every pedal known to man and a few only known to spacemen. They are also connected with Noise Fx for sales of new and used pedals. They have the line on several noise pedal/synth makers. They also have a great messageboard with discussions on gear.

Modular synth.com has links to many modular synth builders as well as some info on modular synths.

That should be enough to keep you busy for a while.

Raptor Safari

In the how to kill/ waste time category file this online 3d game. Off Road Velociraptor Safari is a simple game where you are a raptor driving a jeep and you try to run over other raptors as well as jumping the jeep off cliffs and putting the raptors into transporters all to get points. Check it out I have been playing for a few weeks and still think its fun.

Loopers



Trent Moorman has an article on loopers in the line out section of The Stranger today.

I use a Boss RC 20 XL and a Boss DD-20 Giga Delay for live looping. Check out the comments on the article for a little more on both of them.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

NCIS

A couple of weeks ago we started watching the show "NCIS". They were running marathons on saturdays and I started recording them just to try to have something to watch, as we are still being affected by the writers strike. I have to say its not too bad. Some of the characters are annoying, but we are warming up to it. We haven't caught up to the latest shows, but we will soon.

Monday, April 14, 2008

Computer music

Bare trapped

Seeing the signs

You Kill Me

Yesterday we also watched the movie, "You Kill Me", with Ben Kingsley and Tea Leoni. Its a funny look at a hitman with a drinking problem who gets sent to San Francisco to clean up and the funny situations that follow. I thought it had some great performances by Luke Wilson as Kingsley's AA sponsor, Bill Pullman as the Realtor who is supposed to watch over Kingsley for his boss and Philip Baker Hall as the head of Kingsley's gang who gets taken out by their rivals.

Kingsley and Leoni have a good chemistry as messed up people who are looking for a relationship. I loved it when he decides to tell her he kills people and she thinks he was going to tell her he's gay. In the end it all works out.

Super High Me

Yesterday we went to see a new documentary called, "Super High Me" . I hadn't heard anything about it until my wife asked if I wanted to go. I thought she said do you want to see Super Hymie, which I thought might be a movie about a Jewish superhero, so I asked what it was. She said a comedian had decided to smoke marijuana for 30 days and record the effects, like the guy in "Super Size Me " had done with McDonalds food.

We went to the first showing of the day on Sunday , 4:15pm, which my wife said should have been 4:20pm to go with the films tag line of 420 24/7 for 30 days. Doug Benson is the comedian that came up with the idea. Originally it was a bit in his act, then the films director approached him and they decided to do the film. Doug goes 30 days with out using marijuana or drinking alcohol. During the 30 sober days he has some tests done (S.A.T., Psychic Ability, and a mental ability/reaction/memory test, physical) to set a sober benchmark and lets his audience in on the project. Then he goes 30 days smoking pot and takes all the tests again. The film also visits several medical marijuana dispensaries in Los Angeles and touches on the politics of the medical marijuana in the US.

I thought it was funny, the political side was a little unfinished and I thought the film jumped around too much. It could have focused more on him and what he was doing. It left me wondering if the director and producers were spending too much time doing bong hits and not enough working on the film. The comedy bits were great and I liked his interaction with other comedians talking about drug use. I could have seen more of that and maybe would have liked the film more. The history of the medical marijuana dispensaries gave me more information than I already knew, but left me with questions and didn't follow a timeline in the movie, so it was a little confusing.

If you are looking for more info on medical marijuana you might want to try something else, but for a funny documentary it was a good time.

Taco Truck


So in an effort to try different food outlets in our neighborhood my wife and I tried out the Taco Truck on Sylvan Way SW across the street from Home Depot. This was my first attempt at taco truck cuisine and it wasn't bad.

For $1.50 a taco it was ok, not great, but definitely edible and good for a quick meal. I had three spicy pork tacos. They were simple just meat and onions. Overall I liked them.

My wife wants to try one in White Center she heard was better so it will be our next food experiment.

Cat Power


Friday at the last minute I decided to take my wife to see Cat Power at the Showbox Sodo. Having never seen a show there since it opened as the Premier I had no idea what the room was like or what to expect. The room I liked, I didn't check out the bar, but the stage and sound system were good. The stage is at the back of the room and is kinda stuffed under the rafters, so some of the lights look shoved into place, but overall I thought it worked. The sound wasn't stellar for the first act, Appaloosa and was still a little boomy for Cat Power, but I liked it better than the original Showbox.
Cat Power was playing songs from her latest record of covers. She had a great backing band who all played great. She seemed top be having problems with the monitors and apologized to the crowd at one point. Aside from that her performance was good. I liked her stage presence and thought she sang well. We left before the encore as they had taken a long time to get onstage at the beginning of the show and broke down into a bass and keys jam session for 15 mins at the end. It seemed like she might come back out, but I was ready to go.

Friday, April 11, 2008

Boris under cover



All these dog photos and our cat Boris will be jealous. So here is a photo of him half under the covers on our bed. He has taken to sleeping completely under the covers, so I never can tell if he is on the bed now.

Hello Jamie!!!



Jamie just had 14 teeth taken out yesterday. As you can see he isn't phased by it. He just wants attention.

Hi Snickers!!!


She's tiny. She has an untapped supply of energy and she's real cute. Getting her to sit still for this photo was like trying to take a picture of a hummingbird. Another in a long line of dogs at my work.

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Bidule


So I figured I would continue with my music kick this week as I also revisited a software program I stumbled over a few years ago. Bidule is a modular synth software program, that can be used to create just about anything your mind can come up with.


As you can see in the simple patch in the photo at the top of this post modules are connected with virtual cables to complete the patch. Bidule comes with preprogrammed intstruments , loopers and effects or you can create your own, or run vst effects/ instruments. I originally used it as a VST host for Ableton Live, until I realized how much more it could do.
You can try the software out for free or buy a key for $75 until the official release.

Monday, April 7, 2008

DIY Synth / midi links


So the other day I decided I might try to make a small midi controller. In doing the research I thought I should do a post with links so others can find this info easier. Not that it is hard to find, I just thought it would be fun.


Music from Outer Space is a great place to start. This website has the Weird Sound Generator, the Sound Lab Synth and tons of other great schematics and pre-made PCB's for sound making projects.


Midibox.org has links to many diy midi projects.

Midi-hardware.com also has several pre-made midi boards that can be adapted to any project for creating midi controllers.


Another synth link if you want to build your own, but don't really know much about electronics is Paia I built a modular synth that they have for sale. They also have another synth called the Fatman and a Theremin kit as well.

Dinette

So on Friday after we went to see "Leatherheads", which was kinda disappointing to me, but not a total waste of time, my wife and I went to dinner at "Dinette" . We haven't been back there since we moved to West Seattle and I must say it is still as good as I remember.

The toast is amazing. I took a photo with my phone, but it looks terrible. We tried three of them. First the Crispy bacon, it comes with dates and blood orange mayonnaise. It is a great mix of the salty bacon and the sweetness of the dates an mayo. We also had the Herb Fritatta, an egg and herb fritatta cut into pasta-like strips combined with white truffle oil and lemon mayonnaise. We also had the special toast that was a tuna mixture that set my mouth crazy. From me I could go and just eat the toast, but we also had an entree.

The Gnocchi alla Romana For Two was wonderful. It wasn't gnocchi like I had ever had before, more like semolina squares, but it didn't matter. The veal bolognese perfectly complimented the dumplings. The dumplings a semolina and mozzarella exploded in my mouth with every bite.

For dessert we had the Banana upside down cake. Recently I can't get enough of cooked bananas. This was no exception. Like all the desserts on the menu, just great.

If you get a chance head to Dinette .

Aquaman


Friday, April 4, 2008

Skull

Flower Skull in Georgetown. The drips look like blood.

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Trailer: The Movie

Trailer: The Movie

I was cruising around the internet and found a copy of a short movie I worked on back in 2001. I haven't watched it in a while, but it is still funny. I haven't talked with the director, Douglas Horn since we made the film, but it looks like he has been steadily making films since. You can check out some of his others at Horn of the Moon Productions . I saw on his IMDB page that he has a new movie called "Entry Level" that looks really funny as well.