August 21, 2001

Don't miss the Short List of Music. Sixteen music-industry mavens who know their stuff are each recommending five of year's essential and sales-impeded music -- no gold or platinum albums -- and submitting it to Short List. From there the albums are compiled and the large list voted upon by the same panel, creating a short list (aha!) of essential listening for the year.

Names of note include musicians Beck, Lucinda Williams and Dave Grohl; industry vets Steve Lillywhite and Dan Nakumura; and critics Neil Strauss and Touré. I'm looking forward to the results, especially the long list.

August 17, 2001

The day the news died.

Not everywhere, but as far as musicrag is concerned the news section of this site had been a bit stale for a while now ever since we decided to cover newsy (is that really a word?) items on the front page and so we have killed it. Instead you will now find a section titled Reviews on the right side where album reviews and live show reviews , like The Strokes review mentioned earlier today, shall now live. Look for more in this section soon and thanks for reading.

The Strokes Live Up to the Hype in San Francisco

Read the review of their recent SF show by musicrag contributor, Claire Caraska.

August 16, 2001

I knew him when...

I would like to publicly ask that our very own Ian Miller throw his hat in the ring as 'fill-in' bassist for Weezer. Since it appears Mikey Welsh has checked himself into a psychiatric hospital. The band had to shoot part of a new video without the newest Weezer member and are heading out on a national tour soon with an assload of new songs that have yet to be recorded.

Ian, Ian he's our man if he can't do it... they'll probably just get some session guy from LA or the most recent bassist for 22 Jacks.

August 15, 2001

So bored... must find something new... But why?

That's basically been the summation of my recent plight with finding some new band, some new song, that gets me wet. So I said 'fuck it', rifled through the old cd collection (remember cd's?) and grabbed a former love for a week of sweaty, dirty musical sex.

She and I were polar opposites when we met back in 1993. I was soft, sweet, and vulnerable. She was street-tough, angry, and hostile. She hated my white boy rock: my Afghan Whigs, my Pavement, my Redd Kross. I hated her constant 40 drinking. What should have kept up apart only drew us tighter. We didn't start our audio copulation with a hug, we slammed into each so hard we knocked each other out. It was perfect.

Why I ever broke it off the following winter, I'll never know. But we've found each other again, at least for awhile, and she's still as beautiful as ever...

So... who the hell was your illicit musical fling?

August 13, 2001

Audio Vaporware

I can remember a time when album-release dates meant something.

When a label said the new Foreigner album would be out and such and such a date, by God, that's when it came out. But no more.

Some notable delays in recent weeks: Left Eye's solo joint, Mariah's "Glitter," and the kicker, N.E.R.D.'s debut CD, "In Search Of..." And this isn't your typical delayed release date either. Usually albums are pushed back to coincide with appearances and publicity, or to avoid going head to head with other high-powered releases. But Chad and Pharrell of N.E.R.D. intend to re-record the entire album using live instrumentation — this despite the fact that advance copies of the initial release have already gone out to the music press and have found their way on to Napster, AudioGalaxy et al.

Not since Prince's Black Album has there been such a strange and high-profile non-release. I just hope it's worth the wait.

August 07, 2001

Things I thought I would never ask my readers to do...

... watch the new P. Diddy 'Bads Boy for Life ' video [it's in RealVideo format]. With guest spots by Ben 'Meet the Parents' Stiller and Dave 'Ex-Chili Pep' Navarro playing guitar(?) it is great just for the humor value. The music of course is still sub par, it's still Puffy.

An aside, never go to it's .com is porn style pop up city.

Not necessarilly the news is currently not available. They are promising a new soon. From their holding pattern page:

' Find deeper, better information on artists and shows, check out all-new charts, an in-depth TRL area, exclusive videos and more. Better yet, we're turning over the site to you: Our brand-new community features will hook you up to fans around the country. Create a music-rich profile so people can check you out, post to new boards, and meet and greet others in real time withthe Messenger.'

Sweet. I wanted an in-depth TRL area... wait... no I don't.

All is Full of Bjork

Icelandic chanteuse Bjork has confirmed seven North American shows during her upcoming world tour. According to NME, Bjork will be playing in various opera houses and theatres across the U.S. and Canada on the following dates:

  • October 4-5 Radio City Music Hall, New York, NY
  • October 7 Hummingbird, Toronto, Canada
  • October 12 Wang, Boston, MA
  • October 14 Lyric Opera House, Chicago, IL
  • October 17 Paramount Theater, Oakland, CA
  • October 22 Dorothy Chandler Pavillion, Los Angeles, CA

Bjork also plans to captivate her fans at "secret" 300 capacity shows, which will be announced on the day of the performance. At these intimate venues, Bjork will demonstrate her true singing strength by performing without a microphone. She releases her fourth full-length record Vespertine on August 28. For more concert info, go to

August 06, 2001

Down by The Warfield

PJ Harvey will be making a much anticipated return to San Francisco to perform at The Warfield on September 18. Don't miss a chance to see her play tracks off her critically acclaimed current release "Stories From The City, Stories From The Sea" in addition to old favorites. Check out for exclusive internet pre-sale information for this show and many others around the country in the next month.

Repeation can be dangerous , can be dangerous, can be dangerous ...

I am going on my fifth or sixth straight listen of a combined Pixies / Frank Black / Breeders playlist I have running in WinAmp. Is there any hope that these kids would ever get back together? Arguably Frank Black and Kim Deal have done well on their own but dammit if they didn't create some of the best alt/indie/surf rock in creation then my name isn't Jason Shellen.

If you have any rumors of a reunion please let me know.

August 02, 2001

Finally Some DJ's From a Cool Country

I can now stop supporting the damn French via my Daft Punk guilty pleasure. Now I got's me The Avalanches.

The Avs are an Australian 6 pack of guys who try to sample anything they get their hands on and by the number of times I've replayed "Frontier Psychiatrist" on the WinAmp, they're damn addicting. And they like to beat the shit outta each other on stage. I like that in my rock stars.

Listen for 1960's TV show clips, neighing horses, and operatic choruses. Start with "Frontier..." and work your way through the rest of "Since I Left You."