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Editor’s Pick #292: Death Cab for Cutie’s Cover of The Smiths’ “There Is a Light That Never Goes Out”
March 17, 2010, 1:08 pm
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Death Cab For Cutie

PREVIEW: STREAM Death Cab for Cutie’s Cover of The Smiths’ “There Is a Light That Never Goes Out”

Two Words: HOLY MOLY. Death Cab, you done good this time. Even though my discovery of this song is embarrassingly late, it is still without doubt one of the best covers I’ve heard in awhile. Ben Gibbard flawlessly recreates Morrissey‘s classic voice while giving it his own soft, melodic touch against the acoustic strummings. Honestly, you just have to listen, words won’t do justice. Thank you, Death Cab, thank you.

— Elizabeth Vogt, Assistant Front of Book Editor

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Editor’s Pick #289: The 82nd Annual Academy Awards

The 82nd Annual Academy Awards premiere tonight on ABC

So I don’t know about you guys, but Oscar Night is one of my favorite nights of the year. I love seeing so many talented directors, producers and actors all coming together and celebrating their incredible contributions to the entertainment world. My editors are probably going to kill me for this post but I think it’s completely necessary, especially since music has actually become a very prominent category in recent years. With blockbuster soundtracks that feature big-name artists such as M.I.A. and Belle & Sebastian (Slumdog  Millionaire and Juno), music has definitely become something of importance to filmmakers.

Tonight is the premiere of 82nd annual awards at 8:00 sharp on ABC. With 10 nominees for best picture and two of the funniest men alive as hosts, it should be a show for the ages. Although I’m sure the theme from “Crazy Heart” will get the Oscar for Best Original Song this year, part of me is kind of hoping for one of the songs from “The Princess and the Frog.” What can I say, I’m a sucker for Disney magic.

–Elizabeth Vogt, Assistant Front of Book Editor

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Editor’s Pick #285: Houston’s Free Press Summer Fest 2010

Eleanor Tinsley Park and the Houston skyline at 2009's Free Press Summer Fest

PREVIEW: VISIT Free Press Summer Fest 2010′ site

Ah, I love festival season. With Coachella in California, Bonnaroo in Tennessee and Ultra in Miami, there are almost too many epic road trip options. Luckily, Free Press Summer Fest decided to make its debut in my hometown, Houston, this past summer, surprising everyone with its huge headliners such as Of Montreal and Broken Social Scene. Considering it was the first music festival H-town has ever had, the number of attendees was highly unprecedented, leading to lines that were Woodstock-worthy. After the reveal of the 2010 lineup, it is pretty clear that Free Press was ready to blow away the festival crowds once again. The headliners: The Flaming Lips, Girl Talk, Stars and Ra Ra Riot. Other “lesser known” acts include Kid Sister, Lymbyc Systym, Dead Prez and 50 other local artists. Did I hesitate when purchasing my $22 2-day pass? HELL NO! Even though it will probably be a stifling 100 degrees June 5-6, it’s no match against good friends, good music and the Houston skyline.

–Elizabeth Vogt, Assistant Front of Book Editor

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Editor’s Pick #279: Quality Super Bowl Commercials

So, in case you were in the dark about it, Super Bowl XLIV is kicking off tonight–terrible pun I apologize, it’s been a long week. It’s no secret that those not rooting for either the Saints or the Colts will most likely be tuning in to CBS tonight for one reason: the world-famous commercials. While this year’s line-up isn’t looking too exciting, I have to admit the commercials last year were priceless, featuring talking babies and the world’s shortest commercial.

It took me by surprise, however, when a certain Pepsi commercial came on–probably immediately after a testosterone-fueled Bud Light ad. The commercial presented various video clips from the 1970’s and related each clip with those of the 21st century. The best part? Actual concert footage of both Bob Dylan and Black Eyed PeasWill.I.Am with Dylan’s “Forever Young” playing in the background. With a tagline of “Every Generation Refreshes The World,” this commercial is actually quite refreshing in itself. Hopefully, this trend will be followed for many years to come.

–Elizabeth Vogt, Assistant Front of Book Editor

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Editor’s Pick #263: “Two Weeks” Fan Video
January 19, 2010, 8:04 pm
Filed under: Editor Picks | Tags: , , , , , ,

In a time of Pixar and Avatar, the use of computer graphics has become a staple in almost every epic film released in the past decade. Sometimes, however, even the most low-key, homemade videos can produce incredible CG effects. For example, Gabe Askew decided to break the mold and show that creativity still exists in the architectural visualization field (don’t worry, I had to wikipedia it too). The result? One of the most beautiful animated videos I personally have ever seen set to the lovely Grizzly Bear‘s “Two Weeks”. Gabe, I think you proved your point.

–Elizabeth Vogt, Assistant Front-of-Book Editor

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Editor’s Pick #259: Audiosurf
January 12, 2010, 8:44 pm
Filed under: Editor Picks | Tags: , , , , ,

PREVIEW: WATCH Daft Punk’s “Harder, Better, Faster, Stronger” being played on Audiosurf & DEMO Audiosurf

Everyone has played Guitar Hero at least once in their lifetime. Sure, it’s a heaping ball of fun the first few times but once you start replaying Muse‘s “Knights of Cydonia” because it’s the only track you can stand to listen to, the flame can burn out pretty quickly. Presumably, the one wish of the most avid players is a more personalized track listing to strum along to. Continue reading

Editor’s Pick #255: Danger Mouse and Sparklehorse Present: Dark Night of the Soul

Danger Mouse and Sparklehorse Present: Dark Night of the Soul

PREVIEW: STREAM Danger Mouse and Sparklehorse Present: Dark Night of the Soul

While suffering the last leg of a severe bout of depression in 2005, Mark Linkous–a.k.a. Sparklehorse–finally found solace in Danger Mouse‘s The Grey Album. Soon after, the two met and Danger Mouse contributed a few tracks to Sparklehorse‘s 2006 release Dreamt for Light Years in the Belly of a Mountain. As was expected, rumors of a collaboration between the two artists began to circulate.

The result? Danger Mouse and Sparklehorse Present: Dark Night of the Soul, a hauntingly beautiful collaboration album released in May of 2009 featuring indie rock legends such as The Flaming Lips, James Mercer of The Shins and Julian Casablancas. Continue reading

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