Friday, December 31, 2010

Al's Haphazard 2010 Best Music List


Top 5 Albums
  • The Black Keys' Brothers
    This is the perfect melding of their earlier albums and the previous one they did with Danger Mouse. Polished, yet raw. And Michael Carney's packaging is dope. I'm hoping he gets a Grammy for this!
  • The Roots' How I Got Over
    This is The Roots' most uplifting album and the first in a while I didn't feel obligated to like, just because they're The Roots. It's just GOOD. Secret weapon: Dice Raw. His sung vocals on the title track and "Now or Never" were surprisingly quite good and one of the many highlights for me.
  • The Jon Spencer Blues Explosion's Controversial Negro
    Look, I know this is a reissue. This is my list, hombre, and I'll put what I want on it! Anyway...I've been wanting to listen to this for more than a decade, so I was overjoyed when I found out that Shout Factory was releasing it. This live album (with killer bonus tracks) encompasses everything I love about the Blues Explosion. It's sexy, sweaty, and more rock n' roll than you can handle.
  • Shad's TSOL
    Folks who don't even like rap, like Shad. That's pretty fucking cool. He's a clean cut, God-fearing emcee that can still slap the taste out of a wack rapper's mouth. I'm kinda bummed that he didn't win the Polaris Prize, but the fact remains that he's put out one of the best Canadian rap recordings ever.
  • Pip Skid's Skid Row
    Full disclosure: Pip is a homie, and I handled the design for this album. With that said, I'm also a fan, and I think this album is brilliant. Kutdown laced this with bangin' beats, and Pip brought his trademark vitriol to the table. Nothing else really needs to be said, man. It's outstanding.
Also Worth Mentioning...
  • Guilty Simpson's Ghettodes
    This was a free download of Oh No-remixed Ode To The Ghetto tracks from Stones Throw, and I would've gladly paid for it. Sadly, I liked this more than his OJ Simpson album with Madlib (too many interludes, Mr. Jackson!).
  • Nestor Wynrush Ensemble's So High From The Lo
    I was there the night this was recorded, and it was a lot of fun. Glad to have a document of it!
Albums I Should've Spent More Time With
  • The Sadies' Darker Circles
  • Sharon Jones & the Dap-Kings' I Learned The Hard Way
  • Greg MacPherson's Mr. Invitation
  • Kanye West's My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy
Albums I Should've Bought
  • LCD Soundsystem's This Is Happening
  • Janelle Monáe's The ArchAndroid (Suites II and III)
  • Big Boi's Sir Lucious Left Foot
Regarding these last two lists: I'm not perfect (I know, you're surprised). I moved and I became a dad. Music kinda took a backseat. Also, I gotta keep up with wrestling and all of these podcasts I've downloaded to won't listen to themselves (yet they still pile up!). I can't forget all of these blogs trying to get in my ear, telling me about the hottest shit and slipping me leaked tracks. I'm only one (attractive) man!

It ain't gonna get any easier next year.

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Boxing Day Haul

Boxing Day Haul

I'm a simple man with simple needs. In addition to admiring squirrels, eating fatty foods, and enjoying large behinds, I like bound pages with lots of cool fucking pictures.
All of these were purchased at Comics America at 40% off. From top to bottom:
  • The Jackson 500 Volume Four by Tim Biskup
  • Peepo Choo Vol. 2 by Felipe Smith
  • The Professional: Golgo 13 DVD
  • Shenanigans by Ian Shaughnessy and Mike Holmes
  • The Ice Wanderer and other stories by Jiro Taniguchi
  • Lucky In Love Book One by George Chieffet and Stephen DeStefano
  • Motel Art Improvement Service by Jason Little
  • From The Ashes by Bob Fingerman
  • Strange Tales II, Number 3
  • King City, Issue 12
  • Illustration Magazine #31
  • Illustration Magazine #30
  • Bent by Dave Cooper
I also headed to McNally with Dante and Sarah and bought some magazines (plus the reissued Crumb and The Snowy Day for Dante).

Sunday, December 26, 2010


Centre Court
Boxing Day: Polo Park's Centre Court, 2006.

The day I look forward to all year! My plan so far: Advance Electronics at 7 a.m., Comics America at 9 a.m.
Why Advance? I want a turntable! It's been too long. We'll see if I get one.
Comics America? The usual. From my brief look at the flier in their window tonight, it's 40% off of everything this year. Can't front on that.
Before you say anything, I'm aware of my boycott earlier this year. I've backpedaled, somewhat. I wasn't entirely committed to it when I posted it. I've shopped there, but not as much as I could have. My money has gone to Amazon and McNally whenever possible. The fact remains though, that they carry everything. And to their credit, they've reduced the amount of dust-gathering toys and added better shelving in one section, thereby (hopefully) reducing the amount of wreckage from all the usual piles of bullshit.
With all of that said, today should be fun. If I still have some energy and cash, I think I'll hit up McNally with my gift card. There are wayward art books and magazines that need a home.

Friday, December 24, 2010

Merry Christmas!

Dante: Perplexed
My son is unaware of Christmas, but he does deserve a little slack.
He's only been around for six weeks. All the best to you and yours!

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Panty & Stocking With Garterbelt

Panty & Stocking With Garterbelt is the latest series from Gainax (famous for such titles as the FLCL series* and the feature-length film Wings of Honneamise). It's profane, often disgusting, perhaps even a little sacrilegious...and a whole lot of fun.
I'm sure this sounds rather naive to you, but it's rather cool that a currently-running Japanese animated series is so readily available here in North America. Gone are the days when one would have to wait for Adult Swim or Teletoon to bring a dope anime show over. Now, it's up to you: you can watch it on YouTube illegally, or get with Crunchyroll and watch with a clear conscience (and a few commercials).
Of course, you could also hit up a torrent, you fuckin' pirate.
EDIT: All due props to Labyrinth for introducing me to the show!

*I just found out that Funimation will be carrying the long out-of-print series on DVD. I'm all happy n' shit!