Music Video of the Day: Sure Shot by The Beastie Boys (1994, directed by Spike Jonze)


First things first, Lisa has asked me to apologize to everyone.  She’s currently under the weather and has been ordered to get a lot of rest, which is why she didn’t post anything yesterday.  She will be back and regularly posting soon.

As for today’s music video of the day, what can you say about Sure Shot and the Beastie Boys?  This is the song and the video that I think made everyone want to be the fourth beastie boy.  If I remember correctly, it came out directly after Sabotage and it provides quite a contrast to that earlier video.  Interestingly enough, both videos were directed by Spike Jonze.

This is the rare rap song to feature a flute.  The flute was sampled from the 1970 song, Howling For Judy, by Jeremy Steig.  Steig, who has released twenty albums, has said that he made more money off the royalties to that sample than he has from all of his previous work.

Enjoy!

Gary Panter Fans, Your “Wildest Dream” Has Come True


Ryan C.'s Four Color Apocalypse

Comprehensive in scope and immersive in its presentation, Brooklyn’s finest comic shop, Desert Island, has done a bang-up job in putting together Wildest Dream, a compact little hardcover collection of Gary Panter’s sketchbook drawings from 1973 through 2018 printed (at the tail end of last year) in suitably garish neon purple on paper that either is, or may as well be, newsprint — but, as with all things Panter, it’s as much an intriguing puzzle as it is a legit piece of art history.

And now that I’ve “spoiled” this review right from the outset, let’s examine why this book will appeal to more than just the hardest of hard-core Panter fans and troglodyte “process junkies” —

By and large the “running order” here appears chronological, but so many pages are undated that it’s hard to say for sure, and Panter’s attention has always been split in so many…

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Gunshy (1998, directed by Jeff Celentano)


Burned-out writer Jake Bridges (William L. Petersen, a year or two before CSI) comes home one day to discover his wife in bed with another man.  Jake, who is already suffering from an epic case of writer’s block, goes to Atlantic City and tries to drink his troubles away.  When the bitter Jake gets into a bar fight, he’s saved by Frankie (Michael Wincott).  Frankie takes Jake back to his house, where Jake meets Frankie’s girlfriend, Melissa (Diane Lane).  Jake also discovers that Frankie works as a debt collector for a local mob boss, Lange (Michael Byrne).

Frankie and Jake strike up an unexpected friendship.  Jake wants to experience what it’s like to be a real tough guy.  Frankie wants to improve his vocabulary.  Frankie agrees to take Jake with him when he makes his collections on the condition that Jake recommend a book to him.  Soon, Jake is pretending to be a gangster and Frankie is reading Moby Dick.  Frankie shows Jake how to be intimidating.  Jake explains the symbolism of Ahab’s quest to Frankie.  They become good friends, with the only possible complication being that Jake is falling in love with Melissa.

For a low-budget neonoir that, as far as I know, never even got a theatrical release before being released to video, Gunshy is surprisingly good.  The plot may sometimes be predictable but Petersen and especially Wincott give good performances and they both play off of each other well.  Diane Lane is undeniably sexy but also bring a fierce intelligence and a sense of wounded dignity to the role of Melissa.  This is a love triangle where you want things to work out for all three of the people involved.  The rest of the cast is full of familiar faces.  Keep an eye out for everyone from R. Lee Ermey to Meat Loaf.  Director Jeff Celantano keeps the story moving and proves himself to be adept at balancing scenes of violence with scenes where Frankie and Jake simply discuss their differing views of the world.

An unjustly obscure film, Gunshy is a 90s film that deserves to be rediscovered.

 

Music Video Of The Day: Negasonic Teenage Warhead by Monster Magnet (1995, directed by Gore Verbinski)


The year was 1995 and, in the opinion of many, American rock had gone from being about celebrating having a good time to whining about everything.  Among those who felt that way was David Wyndorf, the lead vocalist of Monster Magnet.  Negasonic Teenage Warhead was Wyndorf’s answer to Nirvana and all of the grunge bands that Wyndorf felt had made rock “whiny.”

The song’s lyrics not only attacked negative rock stars but it also satirized the purposefully obscure lyrics of many grunge groups.  The song even ends with a chorus of “yeahs,” which is about as obvious a dig at Nirvana as you could hope to find.  What’s interesting is that Wyndorf’s lyrics remind me of some of the songs that Bush would eventually release.  The only difference in David Wyndorf was being satirical whereas Bush actually expected you to take their act seriously.

Saw your face last night on the tube
Strong fine snake in a sucker’s vacuum
15 clicks and it’s time to say bye
15 trips and a love that won’t die

Me and myself killed a world today
Me and myself got a world to save
Broadcast dead revolution don’t pay
Strapped up freaks on the Lazarus plane

I can tell just by the climate, and I can tell just by the style
I was born and raised on Venus and I may be here a while
Cause every supersonic jerk off who plugs into the game
Is just like every subatomic genius who just invented pain

I will deny you
I will deny you baby
I will deny you
I will deny you baby
I will deny you
I will deny you baby
I will deny you
I will deny you baby
Yeah yeah, yeah, wow

Oh baby, I’m lazy
Oh baby, introduce me to God
Oh baby, I’m lady
Oh baby, set a place for the dog, for the dog

Yeah, Oh

Shut me off ’cause I go crazy with this planet in my hands
Shut me off ’cause I go crazy with this planet in my hands
Shut me off ’cause I go crazy with this planet in my hands
Shut me off ’cause I go crazy with this planet in my hands

I can tell just by the climate, and I can tell just by the style
I was born and raised on Venus and I may be here a while
Cause every supersonic jerk off who plugs into the game
Is just like every subatomic genius who just invented pain

I will deny you
I will deny you baby
I will deny you
I will deny you baby
I will deny you
I will deny you baby
I will deny you
I will deny you baby

Yeah, yeah, yeah
Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah,
Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, wow
Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah

The video was directed by a very familiar name.  Today, Gore Verbinski is probably best known for directing the first three Pirates of the Caribbean films, The Ring, and Rango.  Like many feature directors, he got his start doing music videos.  The music video for Negasonic Teenage Warhead finds each member of Monster Magnet on their very own asteroid.  Eventually, in a scene that reminds me of something from Heavy Metal, they all end up in a car, driving through space.

Among this song’s fans was Grant Morrison who has admitted that, when he needed a name for the newest member of the X-Men, he borrowed this song’s title.

Enjoy!

“Floppy” — But Solid


Ryan C.'s Four Color Apocalypse

As a follow-up to his breakthrough 2018 graphic novel The Winner, illustrator supreme Karl Stevens has chosen a curious project — a deliberate throwback to the “solo anthology” comics of the 1990s, his new (-ish, the first issue came out late last year) Kilgore series, Floppy, is both nostalgic on its face and self-aware in the extreme, as the cover shown above makes plain. So — are we looking at a purely tongue-in-cheek exercise here?

If you know Stevens, you already know that’s not the case, and even though this can strictly be classified as an autobio work, it ventures into the surreal with enough gusto to even call that easy categorization at least temporarily into question. Our guy Karl seems, then, to be looking to cleave more to the template and maybe even the temperament of, say, Peep Show or Yummy Fur, but without anchoring himself…

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