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Archive for the ‘David Chang’ Category

almostsilentSOUNDTRACK: DELTRON 3030-“The Return” (2013).

Deltron3030-EventII-caa19c164f9e01c2441aab420c0b54356b261e87-s1After thirteen years, alternative rap supergroup Deltron 3030 is back.  If you’ve forgotten, Deltron 3030 is comprised of Dan the Automator, Del the Funky Homosapien and DJ Kid Koala.  Evidently the album is chock full of guest stars (which I usually dislike, but the guest stars are a weirdly unexpected bunch–David Cross, Amber Tamblyn, chef David Chang?–so I’m curious to hear what they are going to add to the sound.

Okay even I admit I don’t really remember what the first Deltron album sounded like, but if memory serves this seems to be picking up in that same spacey vibe that made Deltron so weird and fun.

There’s a story going on here, told in Del’s awesome rapping style–mellow and trippy with big words and convoluted phrasings.  Of course, this is only track 2 on the record so I don’t know exactly what the story is about.  But I know that Deltron 0 is back and I’m pretty excited to hear the whole thing.

You can hear this track on NPR and you can watch the intro track (featuring Joseph Gordon-Levitt) here:

[READ: September 20, 2013] Almost Silent

This book collects four of Jason’s previous books “Meow, Baby,” “Tell Me Something,” “You Can’t Get There from Here” and “The Living and the Dead.”

“Meow, Baby” (2006) is a collection of  “short stories” from Jason.  They feature the same (looking) cast of characters as most of the other Jason books I’ve read (anthropomorphic animals), but there’s a few additions: a mummy, a zombie,a  skeleton and a vampire.  None of the pieces are titled and the only way to know when each is done is when you see his signature.  This is just to note that if there is a mummy in two stories, it’s good to know he’s not necessarily the same mummy.

The stories are quite funny with variations on mummy stories (wrapping your head in a bandage after you are hurt, getting an erection(!)), and vampire stories (the same looking guy is always following him with a stake) and some very amusing domestic scenes with skeletons.  I enjoyed the one where the mummy comes out of the sarcophagus, looks at a newspaper and then walks back into the sarcophagus with a look of despair on his face (his face is still covered in bandages—Jason has an amazing way of expression even with people who have no faces). There’s also a whole series of skeletons who climb out of their graves and go about mundane tasks .  There’s even a guy dressed like the Terminator who has some funny moments where he misses the opportunity to say his trademark lines.

The last few pages are three panel strips—like daily cartoons .  Were they ever shown in newspapers?  These show that Jason is also very funny at punchlines, not just dark stories and black humor.  True, all of these three panel comic are black humor (with the same cast of zombies, vampires, mummies and skeletons), but he really makes some funny and unexpected strips here. (more…)

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SOUNDTRACK: CHUMBAWAMBA-“That’s How Grateful We Are” (1990).

Chumbawamba called it quits this week after 30 years of being a band together.  Most people assume they put out one single and that’s all. And in some ways that is true.  Because most of their other music was way too radical to be played anywhere–even when it was as catchy as this.

This is a six-minute dance-funk song off of the first Chumbawamba album I ever heard (Slap!).  It opens with a little girl saying “Okay, lay some drums on me.”  After some drums and hammered percussion, she says, “gimme some bass” and a funky riff starts.  It’s followed with accordion, horns guitars and, Chumbawamba’s signature–chanting.

It’s a call and response song with a wonderfully catchy chanted chorus.

On first listen you might catch a few unexpected words (black lung, attack, attack, we took to the streets).  But then you get swept up in the chorus again (and maybe the accordion solo).  But on further inspection, the song is about the Hungarian Revolution of 1956:

Working in a forge, black lungs, burnt skin
Callouses, arched back, hammering, hammering
Stalin watching over us pigeon shit head
We’d spit on the floor at this red bastard god.

Not exactly pop music, but you can sure dance to it.  I haven’t listened to too much of their more recent music, but their early stuff is wonderful and worth looking for.  Thanks for the music lads and lassies.

[READ: July 2012] Lucky Peach Issue 4

I can’t get over how much I enjoy Lucky Peach.  I just loaned a past issue to a friend and he loved it too.  He’s looking forward to trying some recipes and he’s been fascinated by the articles, too.  I don’t read any other cooking type magazine, and yet I can’t get enough of this one!

DAVID CHANG & CHRIS YING are still on board with their note “From the Editors” and PETER MEEHAN, JONATHAN GOLD & ROBERT SIETSEMA talk about “American Cuisine, Whatever That Is”

This issue features a choose your own adventure from COURTNEY McBROOM AND ALISON ROMAN–“Voyage of the Taco Belles” in which they travel to Texas and California to compare “Mexican” food.  It’s a fun adventure with many pitfalls and many delicious locations.  No one could conceivably eat that much.

DREW ALTIZER-“Swan Oyster Depot” photos from the independent seller.

DAVID TREUER-“No Reservations” gives a fascinating history of the Objiwe peoples.  How they don’t have a cuisine per se, but they do have specific foods they eat.  Also, that their way of life was not decimated when the white man came because they did not eat bison, they ate from the water and from smaller animals.  But when the white man gave them fatty fried foods, their diet was changed for the worst.  A fascinating look and an unexpected content from a “food” magazine.

PETER MEEHAN, BRIAN KOPPELMAN, ANTHONY BOURDAIN and ELVIS MITCHELL all talk about the movie Diner.  I have never seen it, but it sounds pretty important in a certain range of cinema.  I liked hearing their various opinions of the movie.  Elvis Mitchell (from NPR’s The Treatment) is particularly funny.

TOM LAX-“The Schmitter” talks about The Schmitter a crazy sounding sandwich from Philadelphia that should give the cheese steak a run for its money.  (Cheese, Steak, Grilled Salami, “Special” sauce, Tomatoes, More Cheese and Friend Onions).  Yum!

HAROLD McGEE-“Harold McGee in Outré Space”–He’s back with a lengthy article on eggs and his attempts at peeling hard-boiled eggs without ripping the egg inside–his experiments are pretty out there!

BEN WOLFE–“American Microbial Terroir” How microbes and bacterium form on salami in different regions and how those bacteria inform the flavor of the meat.  Gross but very interesting.

STEVE KEENE-“Portfolio”  He did the cover for Pavement’s Wowee Zowee album and here has a new portfolio of his new style of painting–on plywood.

DANIEL PATTERSON-“We Waited as Long as We Could” He talks about the Rascal House, a restaurant that he went to as young kid with his grandfather.  It’s about the demise of this kind of establishment in general too.

BOB NICKAS-“Someone Has to Bring Home the Bacon” Nickas looks at Andy Warhol and his various accomplishments regarding foot (including the aborted Andymat)

JOHN GALL-“Defrosted Foods” a photo of defrosted foods

NOZLEE SAMASZADEH-“A Modest Proposal”  This clever article talks about eating foods and plants that we consider invasive.  The best idea is to sell back the Asian carp to the Chinese–they love it and we don’t eat it, meanwhile it is invading our waterways.  Seems we could get back all the money they owe us!  Plus, why not eat Nutria?

MATTHEW RUDOFKER-“Knives Out” Look at these amazing knives (that I will never buy).

JONATHAN PRINCE-“Photo-Op Food” A very funny article about politicians trying (and often failing) to blend into regions by eating “local” food.  And the funny photo-ops they often provide.

MARC MARON-“Pan-American” The tale of a used cast iron frying pan and the story behind it.

DOUGLAS WOLK-“Love, Love, and ALE-8 One” This is the story of an independent locally created soda.  It’s based in Winchester, KY and serves more or less the Winchester area.  The soda is in huge demand there.  It’s the story of a brief but failed expansion and a determined independent spirit.  Check out their site and stuff.

DAVID SIMON-“Pickles and Cream” appreciating the only contribution Simon’s grandfather ever made to the culinary arts.

LAUREN WEINSTEIN-“Sushi, USA” a comic about sushi.

MARK IBOLD is still on board (hurray!) bringing culinary fun from Southeastern PA.  This time: John Cope’s Fancy Golden Sweet Corn.

There’s of course lots of delicious (and sometime crazy) recipes written in their own wonderful somewhat disrespectful style.

Oh, and just to put your mind at ease, the picture on the cover is of a cow eating a veggie dog.  Even knowing that it’s still disturbing.

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SOUNDTRACK: ROCKWELL KNUCKLES-“Silly Human” (2011).

This song was NPR’s song of the day on July 7th.  I’d never heard of Rockwell Knuckles before.  He’s a rapper from St. Louis and has at least one other album out as far as I can tell.  I was rather fond of this song for, as the NPR page says, he often prefers to be absurd.

This song has fast, manic music–jittery and confusing and the rap over the top of that music, especially the chorus, is equally frenetic and hard to fathom on one listen.  But the chorus has a interesting twisty melody and the lyrics (the ones that I can follow) are bizarre and thoughtful and not typical “street life” lyrics.

I listened to this sevral times in a row, and will defitely check out his full length (which you can stream here, and the songs I listened to are equally weird and catchy).

[READ: July 6, 2011] Lucky Peach Issue 1

McSweeney’s has yet another new periodical to occupy my ever diminishing reading time.  This one is a food magazine which, as the cover states is “the new food quarterly from Momofuku’s David Chang.”  I don’t especially like food magazines (Sarah subscribes to several, but I just can’t get into them–reading recipes to me is the equivalent of looking at XHTML code for most people).  I mean, I like to cook sometimes, but I don’t look for new recipes or anything like that.  So, I am probably the least likely recipient of this magazine.  Not to mention I’ve never heard of David Chang and only know about Momofuku because of the Elvis Costello album.

And then geez, the first issue is about Ramen?  Who gives a fuck about Ramen?  It’s that crappy stuff you buy 10 for $1 at the supermarket.  And you’re really going to devote 174 ad-free (except, obviously lots of mentions of Momofuku) pages to ramen?

Well, yes they are.  And holy shit if it wasn’t amazing.  David Chang is a really funny guy and co-editor Peter Meehan is a great foul-mouthed humorist.  [I have never seen so many “fucking”s in a cooking magazine before–in fact I suspect I’ve never seen any in a cooking magazine before].  The articles were funny and a little low brow (I doubt most cooking magazines mention people throwing up either), but they were engaging and interesting too. (more…)

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