Friday, January 30, 2009

The IT Crowd

One of my favorite British comedies of the last 10 years is starting to play on the IFC channel. The set up is that two socially awkward computer geeks have to deal with a new boss who knows nothing about computers. I highly recommend it. It also seems that most of the episodes are up on youtube in 10 minute intervals. Unfortunately most of the clips have embedding disabled. So go to youtube and search for IT Crowd Moss Roy and it will bring up the episodes. I recommend buying the US dvd that comes out next month.

T-shirt inspired by the hammer fight in Oldboy

My favorite film of 2003 was the Korean revenge drama Oldboy, one of the best scenes in the movie was the hammer fight in the hallway where the the lead actor, Choi Min-Sik fights a small army of gangsters in a small hallway armed with a only with a hammer. Originally the director had planned to use x-ray shots to show the hammer breaking bones. It was going to be a homage to Sonny Chiba's Street Fighter. But when he found out that Quentin Tarantino was working with Chiba in Kill Bill, he thought that Tarantino would use the same effect. So on the day of the shoot he improvised the fight into one take, one shot. There has been an America remake in the works for the past couple of years and the idea of an American film filled with product placement has inspired this t-shirt store to print up this shirt. You can buy it for $18 at
The link has a clip of the fight and so I did not include one here.
Instead here is the clip from the Indian remake, Zinda. They tried recreating the shot but you can see the main actor, Sunjay Dutt miss gangster with his hammer, and the gangsters reacting as if they were hit.

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Hard Boiled Upate 1-29-09

The store will close at 4pm on Sunday due to my desire to watch the ads during the Superbowl. I think that the Steelers will take the lead early and keep it. Some betting site is offering 10-1 odds that Bruce Springsteen will pull Courtney Cox out of the audience, recreating their music video magic moment from 25 years ago.

Several big releases came in last week and we still have them in. Also I've bought a bunch of good used LPs this week.

Animal Collective - Merriweather Post Pavilion CD Vinyl will be available again in a couple of weeks.

Andrew Bird - Noble Beast CD

Thievery Corporation - Radio Retaliation CD With Femi Kuti, Seu Jorge, Anoushka Shankar and many other special guests.

New issue of Mojo

New issue of Uncut


More Animal Collective

Last week I closed the store an hour early to go to The Metro to see Animal Collective. They were pretty good. So here is their latest music video for "My Girls"

Imaginary Criterion covers for Hong Kong movies

I saw this link on (scroll 1/3 of the way down to the Jan 5. 09 post) for images created by fans of Hong Kong movies. Fake Criterion covers, so much better than the crappy covers these movies get in American releases. You can check out more at this link
Fake Criterion covers


Martial art movies for early 2009

One of the films that I am eagerly awaiting is Ong Bak 2. It has nothing to do with Ong Bak 1 but the reviews on the web say that there is tons of action and that Tony Jaa team up with Dan Chupong (the star of Born To Fight). I am so psyched to see this movie that I won't wait to see it with English subtitles but there is not much plot, just action.

I am also interested in seeing Taken next week as it is by the director of District 13. And I want to see District 13 II whenever that gets released.
And coming out on video soon is one of my favorite films of last year, which I watched without subtitles is the Thai action film Chocolate. The fights are impressive in this fim, but the stunt people in the final fight who fall from several floors up to land on dirt really are one of the highlights of the film. This is the final fight from the film and so it contains spoilers.

Friday, January 16, 2009


Shindig # 8 Jan 09 issue of British zine.

Studio 1 - s/t CD Latest reissue of out of print Mike Ink/ Gas/ Wolfgang Voigt material.

V/a - Nobody's Perfect 3 CD Latest mix of Touchin Bass releases, mixed by Andrea Parker.

Fennesz - Black Sea CD/LP

Lukid - Foma CD On Werk.

Cold Sun - Dark Shadows CD

Crystal Stilts - s/t CD On Woodsist Records.

Blank Dogs - The Fields CD On Woodsist Records.

XLR8R - #124

Group Bombino - Agadez Vol. 2 LP Latest Sublime Frequencies vinyl only release.

V/a - Oh Graveyard, You Can't Hold Me Always LP Latest comp of blues and gospel from Mississippi Records.


Items found in record sleeves

Found in a copy of the Who's "It's Hard" were photos of a hunter and the dead mountain lion he had killed. Also included was a letter from the state of Arizona saying a bounty of $65 was to be paid for killing the mountain lion. From 1966.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Homemade jewelry for sale

My girlfriend has made some nice necklaces using recycled beer caps. The feature 1940's pin up art and are $10 each.

Hard Boiled Update 1-13-09

Lots of new used vinyl arrivals. I've filled the new arrivals bin twice already this month. Not much new in this week but next week brings the new Animal Collective cd. If you want a copy let me know because this will sell fast and it will help me know how many copies to order. At the end of this email there is a list of other upcoming new releases and if you are interested in any of them let me know. Also I've started a blog for the store where I am archiving these updates, reviewing movies, posting old interviews I did in the 1980's, putting up youtube videos of some of the movies I talk about, and probably adding more stuff as I come across it.

Flying Lotus - Los Angeles CD On Warp. Sounds like Prefuse 73 meets Madlib.

Helm's Alee - Night Terror CD

Los Campesinos - We Are Beautiful, We Are Doomed CD With bonus dvd.

M83 - Digital Shades Vol. 1 CD Collection of ambient tracks.

Juana Molina - Un Dia CD

Animal Collective - Merriweather Post Pavilion LP Note that I am out of stock of the vinyl and I am waiting for it to be repressed.

More top 10 lists

My friend Mike S. list of top ten movies.

Feeling overwhelmed at the video store? Netflix queue getting dangerously short? I'm here to help. Below are my ten favorite "new" movies to play Chicago for the first time in 2008. Some of these are even still in theaters. Maybe we could go see one and grab a drink afterwards, eh?

10. Milk (Van Sant, USA)
Sean Penn's performance as the slain gay rights activist is an emotional powerhouse, perhaps his finest to date. Uncharacteristic of director Gus Van Sant, the style of the film is utterly conventional and yet Milk is all the more effective because of it.

9. Timecrimes (Vigalondo, Spain)
A man travels back in time one hour in order to prevent a crime in this low-budget Spanish brain-twister. The year's trippiest genre experience and an extremely impressive debut feature from writer/director Nacho Vigalondo.

8. Hellboy 2: The Golden Army (del Toro, USA)
Darker, weirder and funnier than the original. Fully fleshes out the central paradox of having a monster protagonist who has chosen to protect mankind from other monsters, a job which will be forever thankless. You can have Batman. This is my kind of super hero movie.

7. Tokyo Sonata (Kurosawa, Japan)
Low-key, quirky comedy/drama from Japan that updates some of Ozu's themes for the 21st century. Starts off as a family drama and then becomes increasingly absurd before ending on one of the loveliest grace notes of any movie this year. An abrupt change of pace from horror director Kiyoshi Kurosawa and one of his very best films.

6. The Wrestler (Aronofsky, USA)
A requiem for the 1980s: Mickey Rourke's heartbreaking performance as a faded wrestling superstar is already the stuff of legend. Homeric.

5. Let the Right One In (Alfredson, Sweden)
Sweet love story, touching children's movie, scary vampire film. Throw in some wintry landscapes and a deftly sketched blue-collar milieu and you have one of the most original film concoctions in years.

4. Gran Torino (Eastwood, USA)
Clint Eastwood as a racist Korean war vet who forms an unexpected bond with his Asian immigrant neighbors. Even knowing the premise, the movie still manages, like Million Dollar Baby, to move in an unexpected direction. Each scene in this minimalist drama serves as a building block to the maximum emotional impact of the film's devastating coda.

3. The Curious Case of Benjamin Button (Fincher, USA)
If Zodiac announced the arrival of David Fincher as a great director, this movie confirms it. A profoundly moving study of aging and death, Benjamin Button takes every cinematographic trick in the book (and invents a few along the way) to tell the story of a man who ages in reverse. Haunting, mysterious and very beautiful.

2. A Christmas Tale (Desplechin, France)
One of the greatest of all dysfunctional family holiday get-together movies. By turns tragic and hilarious, this audacious film features brilliant turns by Catherine Deneuve, Mathieu Amalric and Emmanuelle Devos. A masterpiece brimming with philosophical and literary interest.

1. Ashes of Time Redux (Wong, Hong Kong/China)
Wong Kar-Wai's remix of his martial arts classic from 1994 features a new, shorter running time and a new orchestral score. But the film's strengths remain a heady (and ineffably right) brew of gorgeously blurry action set pieces and Faulknerian meditations on love, time and memory.

Runners-Up: WALL-E, Changeling, Vicky Cristina Barcelona, Happy Go Lucky, My Blueberry Nights, The Edge of Heaven, Full Battle Rattle, Heaven on Earth, Une Catastrophe, Pictures at an Exhibition

Jamie T.

Top Ten (in no order)

Sic Alps: US EZ
Made Out Of Babies: Ruiner
Santogold/Diplo: Top Ranking Mix Tape
Fucked Up: Chemistry Of Common Life
Marnie Stern: This is It…
Nick Cave: Dig Lazarus Dig!
Earth: The Bees Made Honey In the Lion’s Skull
Disfear: Live The Storm
Kills: Midnight Boom
Nachtmystium: Assassins: Black Meddle

Ten Great Songs of 2008 off EPs off Otherwise Unremarkable Albums

Big Business: “The Drift”
The Duchess and The Duke: “Reservoir Park”
Iwrestledabearonce: “Tastes Like Kevin Bacon”
Jucifer: “Blackpowder”
Re-Up Gang (The Clipse) “20K Money Making Brothers On The Corner”
Sebastien Grainger “Who Do We Care For?”
Torche “Pirana”
Vivian Girls: “No”
Venomous Concept: “Water Cooler”
CSS: “Rat Is Dead”

Geoffrey W.s Top 10 (in no particular order).

1. erykah badu – new amerykah part one: 4th world war (universal motown)
2. deerhunter – microcastle/weird era cont. (kranky)
3. flying lotus – los angeles (warp)
4. portishead – third (mercury)
5. atlas sound – let the blind lead those who can see but cannot feel (kranky)
6. the roots – rising down (def jam)
7. kanye west – 808’s & heartbreak (roc-a-fella)
8. t.v. on the radio – dear science (dgc/interscope)
9. daedelus – love to make music to (ninja tune)
10. radiohead – in rainbows (tbd)

Evan L.s Top 10.
In no particular order :

- Sian Alice Group, "59.59" (Social Registry)
- Vikki Jackman, "Whispering Pages" (Faraway Press) (more from this label, please)
- Oak / Pink Desert, [Split Cassette] (NNA Tapes)
- M83, "Saturdays = Youth" (Mute)
- Move D & Benjamin Brunn, "Songs From The Beehive" (Smallville Records)
- Machinefabriek / Anne Bakker / Leo Fabriek, "Fabriek Bakker Fabriek" (Machinefabriek)
- Machinefabriek / Jan Kleefstra, "Piiptsjilling" (Onomatopee)
- Richard Garet - L'avenir (Winds Measure)
- Arsenije Jovanović, "Galiola - Works For Radio, 1967 - 2000" (and/OAR)
- Fovea Hex. All releases on Die Stadt. (Heart wrenching, immaculately produced and performed songs. Unfortunately somewhat overlooked.) (Although the Hafler Trio's collaboration on this project is apparently his last release.)

Good things about the year :

- The Touch Records 7" series. Touch Records.
- Lots of great Celer releases.
- The 'and/OAR' label releasing amazing, beautiful and conceptually powerful music/Sound Art.
- Being very pleasantly surprised by the new M83 album.
- Wolfgang Voigt coming back into play, with the exception of the ridiculous new 12" on Profan.
- Seeing the last Stateside appearance of Yellow Swans at their phenomenal and monumental show at the av-aerie.
- Nice that there are so many tape, vinyl and art-edition labels still in action despite the achingly annoying ubiquitousness of intangible music.
- Fennesz not releasing another "Endless Summer".
- Seeing Low in a church.
- Machinefabriek not completely consuming himself.

Released on 1/20/09

ANIMAL COLLECTIVE - Merriweather Post Pavilion CD
PETER LIECHTI & VOICE CRACK - Kick That Habit DVD On Drag City
ROYAL TRUX - Twin Infinitives 2x LP Back in print on vinyl.
ROYAL TRUX - S/T LP Back in print on vinyl.
A.C NEWMAN - Get Guilty CD/LP Matador - From the New Pornographers.
TITUS ANDRONICUS - The Airing Of Grievances CD/LP On XL
THOM YORKE - Eraser Remixes CD Remixes by the Bug, Four Tet, Burial and more.
DEVENDRA BANHART - Smokey Rolls Down Thunder Canyon LP Vinyl finally out after a year of delays.
ANTONY & THE JOHNSONS - The Crying Light CD (Secretly Canadian)
BON IVER - Blood Bank CDEP/12" EP (Jagjaguwar) JAG134
JIM O'ROURKE & LOREN CONNORS - Two Nice Catholic Boys CD (Family Vineyard)
PSYCHIC ILLS - Mirror Eye CD/LP (The Social Registry)
CLUE TO KALO - Lily Perdida CD (Mush)
PARENTHETICAL GIRLS - Safe As Houses CD (Tomlab)
J. TILLMAN - Vacilando Territory Blues CD (Western Vinyl)
RACHEL SHEARER - Fakerie DVD (Family Vineyard)
THE WELCOME WAGON - Welcome to the Welcome Wagon LP (Asthmatic Kitty)
STEPHEN O'MALLEY - Keep an Eye Out! LP (Table of the Elements) TOE101lp -
JEREMY JAY - Love Everlasting 12" (K Records) KLP202lp -
MUSIC GO MUSIC - Warm In The Shadows 12" (Secretly Canadian)
ANGELO SPENCER - Music Is My Sweat b/w Great Salt Lake 7" (K Records)

Ladies & Gentlemen The Fabulous Stains

One of the movies I've been looking for close to 15 years finally got released on dvd. It never had a vhs release. There were bootlegs that were copies of a broadcast from USA's Up All Night, but those were edited. It stars Diane Lane and Laura Dern, and was written by the same lady that wrote "Slapshot". If you ever wondered where Riot Girl sound and vision came from you have to see this movie. Filmed in 1980. To me this clips sounds like Young Marble Giants.

Monday, January 12, 2009

Henry Rollins interview from 1988

In the winter of 1988 Stephen Wessley and myself interviewed Henry Rollings before a show at the Cubby Bear. The interview was published in the spring 1988 issue of the WHPK Program Guide. Lots of things have changed since then. I bought my first cd player in 1991. You had too search for hard to find items. If you found a good book, you bought it because you never knew when you would see it again. You couldn't go on ebay or amazon and order it. Rollins has gone on to find more fame with music and acting and currently hosts a tv show. He still has not compromised his life. But if you had told me that fifteen years after this interview that Rollins would be entertaining troops for the USO I would never of believed it.

Mark Ferguson: Why did you choose to record under the name Henrietta Collins?
Henry Rollins: Henrietta Collins? It's just a thing I'm doing. It's no big deal. It's just Henrietta Collins and the Wife Beating Childhaters. I hear Henrietta has another record coming out, probably in 1988. What I've heard in the press release is that it's supposedly the rap twelve inch to end all rap twelve inches. He has a new band, he's fired half his band. He's a Prince clone. Prince recently fired half of his band, so he fired the whole band. And now he has Henrietta Collins and the Fearless Substance Abusers.
MF: Is there going to be another Henry Rollins Band album?
HR: Yeah, next week. It's called Life Time. Nine songs recorded digital, twenty four track in England, in November, 1987, produced by Ian Mackaye. And it is the full band:, me, Andrew, Chris Haskett and Sim Cain, the same band that played all over last year.
Stephen Wessley: Is the rap single just an experiment, or is it something you'd like to go into?
HR: Now fellas, I can't speak for Henrietta. I think we should relax and see what that person has up his or her sleeve. If that record comes out, like I've read, there could be some interviews and live performances, we'll see.
MF: I read in one of your books that you've made a movie with Lydia Lunch. Was that for Richard Kern?
HR: Yeah, we did that one, and we did another one, kind of a ten minute thing, which is basically me raping her and beating her up. That never came out but I think it got shown at some art festivals or something. 'Cause it is art, you know, but we never really released it. I've never even seen it.
MF: Do you plan on getting involved in film in any larger extent?
HR: Yeah, I've got a movie I'm doing in August. It's called "No, Not One" and it's written by a guy named George, I forgot his last name. He's a UCLA film grad, he's just a wise-ass guy with a lot of really great ideas. Last summer, in Chicago, I was sent a script he wrote, and I really liked it. And last October when I was in Holland he sent me another one, of this movie and I read it and I thought it was great. He wanted me to be the lead in it, so I contacted him when I got home from Europe a few months ago and told him I'd like to try it out, only I've never acted before. I'm not an actor, but he said "Hey don't worry about it." So we got together and started working on this and that, and we're going to kick live in August, when the band's on break.
MF: The band's going to go on tour then, to support the album?
HR: Yeah, I'll give you a rough overview of 1988. Right now, it's February, all of February is a reading or talking tour, whatever it is. And that ends, and then the next day band practice begins, and that goes on for a month, and then the band hits the road for six weeks, ending up in Los Angeles. Then we're going to record all the new stuff we've got a that moment, and take a breather, then hit the road in early June, to go until about late July. Then the band goes and catches a tan, and I go do the movie. Then around September we take off for Europe to do about four to six weeks of major countries, major cities. Then I'll stay behind to do another spoken word tour. Then I'll come home in November or December, and see how I feel then, might be a little out of breath. I doubt it.
SW: Do you feel that your writing is influenced by your music and vice versa, or to what extent does someone like Bukowski who influences your writing affect your music?
HR: I'm influenced by everything I read, everything I see, everything I touch, everything I taste, everything I hear, everything I know, everything I'm afraid of, everything I hate, and everything I love. So I'm influenced by this right now. Books, definitely influenced by authors, by music. I get a lot of energy from other people's work. I'm a very excitable person.
MF: What was the last good record you listened to?
HR: Well I listen to a lot of good records. I just bought some some stuff on tape with me for the long rides in the train. I bought three hours of Devo, the "Paris, Texas" soundtrack, "Hot Buttered Soul" by Isaac Hayes, some of the "Shaft" soundtrack, ninety minutes of ZZ Top, Ravel, Die Haut, an assorted tape with the "Blue Velvet" soundtrack and the first Boston album on the other side. I know I'm blowing it. I listen to all kinds of stuff. Just before I left I bought a cd player, and I bought a couple of King Crimson cds "Starless and Bible Black" and "Red", and I was just cranking those everyday before I left.
MF: How many books have you had published?
HR: Five paperbacks and two limited editions.
MF: What's the total number of books that you've sold?
HR: Over twenty thousand. We can't keep them in print, we're going to start printing up to five thousand of each one, just to keep up with demand.
MF: Have you ever been approached to write a script?
HR: The only thing I've ever been approached to script was "Don't Drink and Drive" public service announcements. A big advertising agency wants me to write some PSA's and then shoot me doing them and syndicate it all over America. But otherwise I don't get many offers of any kind, except for the band, and the reading thing. I don't have scripts being thrown through my window at every waking moment, I'm small change. I go about what I'm doing in a very, you might say, arrogant, tunnel vision way. I don't like contributing to magazines, I did that and I found I don't want that. I don't aspire to be on Warner Bros., I don't want to be on Warner Bros., not that they want me, they don' know who I am. I don't want the mainstream. I don't want to be compromised in any way. That's the way I am and that's the way I'll always be. It's the way I was raised, with Black Flag and SST Records, never compromised, never took shit from anybody. We wanted this, and we did that. If anyone didn't like it we told them to fuck off, and that's still what I say. In that way I leave myself closed to a lot of opportunities by just going "Nope, don't want to do that".
MF: You say you don't like contributing to magazines. Didn't you just contribute a piece to ReSearch?
HR: That's different, because I really liked the idea. It wasn't like Vogue or Option, it wasn't like a magazine, it was a concept. Vail asked me and I said "Sure I'll do it." It wasn't like he bugged my asshole with a microphone and got me telling a story in the bathroom or something.
MF: But they ran that letter in Option.
HR: Well I wrote that to Scott. If you look at the letterhead it says "Dear Option", well I wrote that to "Dear Scott". Every other month he sends me a magazine, and Verlaine was on the cover, who is a guy who really interests me, he's an amazing player. And the interview was so stupid. So I wrote him, like, "Hey Scott, what's the deal?" and he printed it with my face. Maybe he sold an extra copy with that.
SW: Do you feel traveling by train is an inconvenience?
HR: No, I like it. It's the only chance I get to read. I hate airplanes. I hate airplanes and I like the train because it goes where the highway doesn't, and you can see great parts of the country. Like going through Boca Raton Pass, the mountains, through Colorado, through the desert in Arizona and New Mexico, it's just incredible. Lots of room, and in the winter time there's no on it. It's the only time I get to really relax. On a plane I'm just uptight, it's like I'm keeping the wind glued on by staring at it. I get to wound up. And these days I'm a very busy person so I really don't get enough reading done, so I can't wait for the Boston train, because I just got some great books.
I just got this great book called "Proud Beggars" by a guy named Albert Cossari. He's an Egyptian writer, this books on Black Sparrow. I've got one of his books, which I saw in a used book store once, apparently his books are really rare, anyways I pulled it out and it had this great write-up by Henry Miller. So I thought "A dollar? I'm buying it" 'cause what the hell, Miller he's the man. So I was in Denver the other day with this guy who's also a book collector. And he says to me "Have you ever read this guy?" and he pulls down "God's Lonely Men", by Cossari. So today I went to Book Row or whatever it is and I found Cossari. I bought a J.M. Coetze book today, "The Life And Times Of Michael K". I've already read it, but I bought it for a girl. I bought "Song Of The Silent Snow" by Hubert Selby, for the same girl. I buy books for girls a lot, guys too but I like girls better. I buy books for a lot of people.
SW: Do you find it hard to switch gears when you're writing lyrics versus journal entries?
HR: No, what I usually do when I write these days, I've got three different not books. I've got this one book, then my scrapbook with is for when I come up ideas in the middle of the night, then I've got this which is phone messages and also other ideas. A lot of times when I'm writing in the journal I'll come up with an idea for something else, so I'll write with a pad on each leg and I'll just go from one to the other, sometimes I've got three. That's the way I think, I free associate a lot of stuff.
SW: Taking your readings in pieces you get a fragmented picture, but taking them as a whole is confusing. I can't tell when I'm supposed to laugh and when I'm supposed to cry.
HR: Good. It's good for you, a little push and pull. I do a lot of humor, but my humor's barbed. It's laughs with thought in mind. I don't like laughs like Eddie Murphy. I like laughs that take you somewhere, like Lenny Bruce. As far as this talking schtick or whatever it is I'm doing, if I had a role model, it's Lenny Bruce. Just for the fact that he went up there and really kicked it live. He just went up there and just went. And I aspire to those balls, to go up there go up in front of an audience and just release. He was funny, but he also made you think. He never did anything that was just a laugh for laugh's sake. And that's what I like too, like a spoonful of sugar makes the napalm go down.
SW: So one of your concepts, your goals is to make people think about those topics, to create questions in people's minds?
HR: No, don't get me wrong, but I do a lot of this just for me. I'm not an entertainer. I've got a concept of what I'm going to do tonight. Last night was pretty much off paper, before that in Fargo was no paper, I just went, tonight I'll do a little of both. It depends on the crowd. Last night was a very hard show, the crowd was talking and fidgeting around, it's a very hard room. It was funk night across the way, and every time someone would open the door it's this megablast of funk, also there's this steady hum at the bar, I just can't concentrate. Here, I've done two shows, and the crowds have been really cool.
MF: Could you give us the whole picture on your benefit record?
HR: Yeah, sure, a while ago I came up with the idea to start my own record label, which is totally dedicated to raising money for charities of my choice. The name of that label is High On War. Like I said all the proceeds from High On War are going to benefit: battered women and battered children are my main thing. And the first single is finished, it's been recorded. It's called, well it's not called nothin', me and this guy Tom Trocoli were sitting in my room and we recorded it. There are three songs, vocal and acoustic, and there's some flat notes in there, but it's got a lot of soul. And my manager's going through the assorted paperwork so I can release it legally. As soon as you want to release a record and give money to people, the local authorities get very suspicious. It's not easy, we've been going back and forth for three weeks trying to give money away, it's really discouraging, but we're still trying.

Live footage from 2000.