Tuesday, May 15, 2007
Monday, May 14, 2007
so heres my last blog...its all about the greatest thing on Earth!
and it makes me totally lame
I Michael Wisth am seriously addicted to Maroon 5. Its all I got. I really suggest everyone check out the new song and the new album. check this review
Maroon 5's 2002 debut album, Songs About Jane, was the kind of hit that doesn't happen often in the new millennium -- a genuine word-of-mouth hit whose popularity grew steadily after its release, largely due to the sweet, sunny hit "This Love," a song sly and catchy enough to stay on the adult pop charts for years without wearing out its welcome. It also was catchy enough to engender years of goodwill. Five years of goodwill, in fact, as the band toured heavily while slowly tinkering away on their second album, finally delivering It Won't Be Soon Before Long (its title perhaps a pun on the gap between records, perhaps not) half a decade after Songs About Jane. If that delay sounds like a symptom of sophomore jitters, that's not exactly true, since during that long stretch between albums Maroon 5 worked Songs About Jane and, in a sense, that album wasn't strictly their first album, either. Maroon 5 evolved out of Kara's Flowers, a post-grunge pop band whose 1997 debut never took off, not even when their debut was reissued in the wake of Maroon's success, but it did provide the group with the foundation for their success; it's where they paid their dues and learned how to be a pop band. Traces of Kara's Flowers could be heard in Maroon's rockier moments on their debut, but under their new name, the group began to develop an infatuation with blue-eyed soul-pop, which they wisely develop on It Won't Be Soon Before Long. More than develop, they modernize it, borrowing elements of Justin Timberlake's stylized synthesized soul, but Adam Levine is wise enough to know that he's no young colt, like JT. He knows that he's a pop guy, somewhat in the tradition of Hall & Oates, but he isn't trying to be retro, he's trying to fill that void, making records that are melodic, stylish, and soulful, which It Won't Be Soon Before Long certainly is.
In every respect, It Won't Be Soon is a bigger album than its predecessor: hooks pile up one after another, there's not an ounce of fat on the songs, the production is so immaculate that it glistens. If there were lingering elements of Maroon 5's alt-rock past on Songs About Jane -- primarily in its lazy, hazy vibe -- they're gone now, replaced by the sleek, assured sound of a band that's eager to embrace its status as the big American mainstream pop band of the decade. But Maroon 5 isn't desperately grasping at the brass ring, they're playing it smart, building upon the core strengths of their debut and crafting a record that's designed to appeal to many different listeners, from teens crushing on Nelly Furtado's R&B makeover to adults looking for something smooth and melodic. It Won't Be Soon Before Long appeals to both audiences with an ease that seems effortless, but like any modern blockbuster, this album was shepherded by several different teams of producers, all brought in to emphasize a different personality within the group. The bulk of the record was cut with Spike Stent and Mike Elizondo -- Stent worked with U2, Oasis, Björk, and Gwen Stefani, while Elizondo had produced Fiona Apple and Pink -- but Queens of the Stone Age producer Eric Valentine was brought in for a couple of cuts, as was Mark Endert, who mixed "This Love." There may have been three different sets of producers, but the album is streamlined and seamless, never seeming calculated even if it was clearly made with an eye on mass appeal, and there are two reasons for that. First, Maroon 5 has gelled as a band, developing a clean, crisp attack that may bear traces of its influences -- there are knowing references to Prince, the Police, even OutKast sprinkled throughout (the keyboard on "Little of Your Time" is a direct nod to "Hey Ya") -- but it's a sound that's instantly identifiable as the band's own signature. Nowhere is that more evident than in how they can give soulful grooves like "If I Never See Your Face Again" a rock edge -- or how they can suddenly explode into shards of noise as they do on the coda of "Kiwi" -- or how when the electronic instruments dominate the production, the music still breathes like the work of an actual band, not like something that was constructed on a computer. But like with any good blue-eyed soul, the reason that this album works is the songs themselves. Even the flashiest production-driven tracks here -- the opening one-two punch of "If I Never See Your Face Again" and "Makes Me Wonder" -- aren't about feel; they're about the songs, which are uniformly tight and tuneful, sounding better with repeated plays, the way any radio-oriented pop should. If some of the ballads aren't as distinguished as the livelier tracks, they nevertheless are as sharply crafted as the rest, and the end result is that It Won't Be Soon Before Long is that rare self-stylized blockbuster album that sounds as big and satisfying as was intended.
have a great summer!!! much love
Sunday, May 13, 2007
I just read Melissa's blog and I couldn't help but laugh. It's so true, except my vice is the Internet. I do a lot of school work on the computer so it's very tempting, mid paper writing, to take a "short" break and hop on Internet Explorer. From there, the "short" break usually turns into a half hour break or more. I usually have a list of bands written on my hand that people have told me to check out. So, I go to wikipedia to look up the band first, then I go to myspace music to listen to samples of the songs. If I like them, I continue on to amazon.com to see how inexpensively I could buy the cd. Once you look at one band on amazon.com, they usually give you a list of similar artists. From there, the cycle starts all over again, and it's a vicious one.
It sucks that I am a procrastinator...I wish I wasn't, but I am. And, it is something that I have just learned to accept about myself. This, however, will be my last round of finals that I will ever have to procrastinate for since I graduate in 6 days, 8 hours, 30 minutes and a few seconds...but, who is counting?
Good-bye JMC 262 blog...it has been fun!
Recently, the remote control to my television 'broke' and we could not manually change the channel or do anything from the actual tv. During this two day stint of my tv being stuck on INPUT 2, I barely watched television, and got SOOOOOO much done! Once the tv was gone, I didn't even resort to the internet for entertainment...I actually wrote papers in a punctual manner, took my dog for a walk, etc.
I definitely won’t say that television makes people lazy… but lazy people seem to watch a lot of tv—and I am definitely a lazy person. Right now even, I have on the most random, distracting channel on (Style- Who’s Wedding is it Anyway!?) even though I have 4 exams to study for and a 15 page paper due.
I don’t know why turning the television off is such a struggle! Does anyone else have the same problem? Do I have major ADD? AM I ADDICTED?
Friday, May 11, 2007
Thursday, May 10, 2007
I’m sure many of you have read the Shepherd-Express article “Why We Hate Local TV News.”(Article). I can see how this article could/did anger some local television personalities and stations, particularly those at WTMJ4, but this article just re-listed things that even casual viewers have known about and complained about for years – overly dramatic music, entertainment plugs, and “the team.”
The 30-minute news format is flawed—that’s not enough time to share ALL of the news…and it’s a lot of time to produce segments for everyday, multiple times a day. What’s actually newsworthy is rarely what is important, but it’s timely or funny.
In a class, my professor showed us several news clips…a few of hard news (aka world issues/events, real news) and a few of soft news (Look how cute the Pandas are!). Hard news stories often times elicited no response or emotion, but a particularly funny soft news story had the whole room laughing and wanting more!
Think about what might pull YOU into an episode of the Nightly News—not what’s happening in Iraq—but instead how American’s are spending out of control, or about how the most popular car on the market spontaneously combusts… human interest & wacky stories draw in the viewers. We’ve shown news outlets what we want…but yet studies show, and we personally say, that we are disappointed and want more important information and stories (what is socially/intellectually acceptable to say).
My brother keeps bugging me about taking him places and he don't have no gas money so I want do it. Am I wrong? I don't think so. He even had the nerves to ask me to go and pick someone up for him for $2. I could have slap him right in his mouth just for even asking me something like that. It seems like people who don't have a car don't understand that cars need gas in order to run.
That's just something that was on my mind, now I gotta go put some gas in my car at least 3 gallons.
Wednesday, May 09, 2007
Sunday, May 06, 2007
Everyone's favorite (and I use the word favorite with sarcasm in mind here) Hilton is going to jail. I guess her charm and money couldn't get her out of this mess. I think it's about time that-- Paris served time.
Paris breached her driving ban and was caught, obviously. Ms. Hilton doesn't exactly rank up there with the most intellectual of criminal minds. It's really funny that Paris broke the law in such a manner. The girl is literally stalked by photographers-- didn't she think someone would notice she was driving when she wasn't supposed to be behind the wheel? Did she not realize that with her image splattered all over the pages of the tabloids that someone, maybe even a law official would say, "Gee, that's odd. Paris is in the front seat behind the driver's wheel. It almost appears as though she's driving."
Also, with all the money the girl has, did she really find it necessary to pilot a Range Rover (or whatever obnoxious vehicle of the week she has) in her six inch stiletto heels? Hi, Paris, it's called a limo. I'm pretty sure you could have afforded one...
I highly recommend reading the second article.
See you in 45 days, Paris. I'm sure you'll capitalize on this experience when you are released with a cheap novel or two. Hey, maybe even an interview on 20/20 where you claim you are a changed woman.
Oh, we, your adoring fans, can only hope.
Saturday, May 05, 2007
To reach a sufficient level of blob-ness, lately I've been watching "Beavis and Butthead." Yes, I know what you're thinking: "Beavis and Butthead" are animated Cro-Magnon-like retards from fifteen years ago meant for idiot teenagers. Well, as it just so happens, fifteen years ago I was fourteen and enjoyed "Beavis and Butthead" and therefore have a sweet spot for them now, in my late twenties.
I think everyone can relate. We tend to enjoy shows that we watched in our youth. And even if you may have outgrown them, they still tend to be, for the most part, watchable. So, my recent acquisition from Netflix was "Beavis and Butthead: The Mike Judge Collection" (the complete six disc series). Now I have tons of ultra low-brow humor to numb my brain when I need to "blob out." I think I'll try to get some "Tom Green Show" next....
Friday, May 04, 2007
I was very disappointed. I was expecting the full two hours to be about all the characters at Seattle Grace that we all have grown to love of the past seasons. I was even more disappointed with few scenes that we did see of Seattle Grace. All of a sudden Burke is getting cold feet? What? Meredith loses her stepmom and then her dad slaps her, with no reaction from all the doctors looking on. They just stood there as Meredith stormed off and her dad went into hysterics. Lame. Jane Doe can speak three languages and still doesn't remember who she is? I guess.
Even though some of the scenes from the original Grey's were questionable and not very entertaining, it is all just a set up for the season finale. I was reading some online tabloids and may have found out some answers to some of the questionable writing for this episode.
I guess that the show wrote itself into a corner after the February sweeps and off screen drama also played into what will be happening. I guess we just have to say goodbye to a show that is now going down hill.
Thursday, May 03, 2007
1. World Wide Web
3. Graphical user interface
5. Broadband - no more dial-up! Yea!
10. Instand Messaging
13. The Well
17. Online mapping tools
20. The Drudge Report
21. Bloggers - clearly a big part of this class
23. Myspace - or, as I like to call it, mylife
25. Google (actually google was number six, but I messed up typing the list...oops.)
Anyways, I'm sure everyone is more than framiliar with the 25 things on this list. It's amazing to think that 25 years ago, the Internet, as we know it, was just in the process of being created. Now, it is an enormous part of our everyday lives. It makes you wonder what is to happen next....
The MBAs who populate ad agencies and corporate marketing departments spend years learning the art of control – what their cleverly calibrated messages should (and shouldn't) say, where they should appear, how often they should appear there, and what should appear nearby. Chevy decided to chuck all that and invite people to post their own commercial messages about America's best-selling SUV online, where the ads would be free to migrate to YouTube or anywhere else. Chevy supplied the video clips and music; users could then mix and match the material and add their own captions.It continues with lots of background about the history of these innovative campaigns, including that of Converse, the sneaker company. It's worth checking out their website, especially the "made by you" area where they have short films inspired by the brand. (This is an example of involving users that didn't go wrong.)
The contest ran for four weeks and drew more than 30,000 entries, the vast majority of which faithfully touted the vehicle's many selling points – its fully retractable seats, its power-lift gates, its relative fuel economy. But then there were the rogue entries, the ones that subverted the Tahoe message with references to global warming, social irresponsibility, war in Iraq, and the psychosexual connotations of extremely large cars. One contestant, a 27-year-old Web strategist from Washington, DC, posted an offering called "Enjoy the Longer Summers!" which blamed the Tahoe for heat-trapping gasses and melting polar ice caps. An entry called "How Big Is Yours" declared, "Ours is really big! Watch us fuck America with it." The same contestant (hey, no rules against multiple entries, right?) created an ad that asked the timeless question, "What Would Jesus Drive?" On its own Web site, the Tahoe now stood accused of everything but running down the Pillsbury Doughboy.
Tuesday, May 01, 2007
I am a huge fan of HBO programming… documentaries, dramas, comedies…ALL OF IT! In fact, I’ve recently become addicted to “The Wire.” This is the best cop show I have ever seen and one of the best shows on television right now– the detectives never have all the answers and every character is well developed and varied. Instead of doing a paper one night—I watched 7 episodes in a row and they are each a full hour long…oops!