Posts By hopperd

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BWE SPORTS: The Difference Between Baseball Fans and Hockey Fans

Baseball vs HockeyThings people yelled at me while I was cheering for the Pirates at the Pirates/Yankees game at Yankee Stadium this weekend:

  • “Sit down!”
  • “Pirates suck!”
  • “It’s not 1960 anymore!”
  • “Be quiet!”
  • “Can you even name the mayor of Pittsburgh?” [I did]

Things people yelled at me while I was cheering for the Penguins at the Penguins/Rangers game at Madison Square Garden in March:

  • “Sit down, faggot!”
  • “Penguins suck and you’re a fag!”
  • “You’re a bigger faggot than Sidney Crosby!”
  • “Crosby’s a homo!” (clap, clap, clap clap clap) [started a cheer]
  • “Look, that guy and his daughter just got up and left because you were being such a f***ing faggot!”

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LISTEN UP: Wake Up, Mr. West, It’s John Mayer

Kanye West

  • I’m sure if Chappelle’s Show had stayed on the air, they’d have gotten around to a sketch where Kanye West collaborates with John Mayer, but fortunately, real life covered it anyway. Surprise surprise, it’s awesome. (Culture Bully)
  • I don’t think I’ve told a single person about DJ Jazzy Jeff DJ’ing the Webby Awards afterparty without that person immediately asking “Did he play ‘Summertime???’” (Jefitoblog)
  • Talib Kweli has a new album on the way, though I’m kind of on the fence about this track on Analog Giant. And no, I’m not posting three hip-hop tracks today because I’m trying to impress my black friend who happens sitting here next to me, it’s just a coincidence. Also, I really love Chris Rock.
  • Meanwhile in indie world, Sons of Perdition are tweaking my interest, thanks to a substantial nod from Nine Bullets. Imagine if Bryan Ferry fronted a gospel/bluegrass band; weirdly enjoyable, plus I think it single-handedly reaffirms my whiteness for this post.
  • Finally, Feed Me Good Tunes tips its cap to the Sopranos finale with an mp3 of “Don’t Stop Believing.” Listen to it while you can, or you might have to wait til the next time you’re at a frat party, karoke bar, or in any building ever with a stereo and people between the ages of 14 and 50 in it.

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BWE SPORTS: Defense Wins – Excuse Me For a Second, *YAWN* – Championships

D Fence

  • LeBron James looked completely lost last night as the Cavaliers fell to the Spurs, 85-76, in Game One of the NBA Finals. The Spurs are on the verge of surpassing the New England Patriots and New Jersey Devils to earn their fourth prestigious “Hey, Great, You Guys Won a Title, Awesome” Title.
  • The Stanley Cup is headed to California for the first time in its 115-year history. Clearly, the Cup is not awarded to whichever team has the coolest Starter jackets.
  • Cubs teammates Carlos Zambrano and Michael Barrett exchanged punches in the dugout earlier this week, but Zambrano said the two apologized to one another, shared tears, and Zambrano even added “I still love him.” Presumably, this took place in an airport hangar while “The Space Between” was playing.
  • Surprise, surprise, Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal will be squaring off in the French Open Final. For future tournaments, can we just give them byes directly into the Finals so they can be better rested for an exciting final match?
  • Finally, I’ll leave you for the weekend with the Headline of the Week (via Fire Joe Morgan).

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LISTEN UP: More Like Actual-Dinosaur Not-Junior

J Mascis

  • Dinosaur Jr. are back on tour, and False 45th has a few tunes to whet your appetite. I could make the joke that they really are as old as dinosaurs at this point, but I won’t. I also will not refer to them as “Dinosaur Sr.”
  • I never realized how many good bands have songs about photographs; The Glorious Hum snaps some mp3s from Belle & Sebastian, The Cure, Weezer, Bishop Allen, and even throws in Filter’s “Take a Picture.” No “Photograph” by Nickelback, though, god damnit.
  • Scissors For Lefty is a pretty sweet band name, and the music’s worth a listen, but my only question is – remember how British bands used to sing without British accents? How come bands from the U.S. are now singing with British accents? (Here Comes the Flood)
  • Remember when you were in high school and you decided that all acoustic music was somehow better and more meaningful than electric music as you pretended to enjoy a song on “Clapton Unplugged” that wasn’t “Layla?” To Die By Your Side helps us relive that experience.
  • Finally, in honor of “Ocean’s Thirteen” coming out this weekend, The Late Greats offers us a handful of terrific songs for a bunch of wealthy actors to dick around to.

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BWE SPORTS: We’re One Step Closer To Being Stuck With Baseball All Summer

NiedermayersThe Anaheim Ducks have taken a lot of criticism from the press and fellow hockey fans for their dirty play and various character issues. Nonetheless, the Ducks are Stanley Cup champions, and rather than add some fuel to the controversial fire, I will issue this honest, heartfelt, and completely non-sarcastic congratulations to the team.

Way to go, Ducks! Thank god the Stanley Cup isn’t headed to Ottawa – it’s going to southern California, where it truly belongs and will be appreciated. Sure, a lot of people are blasting Chris Pronger for taking cheap shots at players, but every replay of Pronger’s hits showed that he was clearly just holding up or trying to get out of someone’s way, and not deliberately attempting to injure or possibly cause lasting spinal damage to other human beings. Pronger is one of the game’s true gentlemen, and he will likely be met with rousing, appreciative cheers every time he travels to Ottawa, Detroit, or Edmonton.

I’m also glad no one made an issue out of Senators Captain Daniel Alfredsson allegedly shooting a puck at Ducks captain Scott Niedermayer to try to injure him. Yes, Alfredsson is a professional hockey player, but hockey players usually don’t decide where they shoot pucks, pucks just sort of fly off peoples’ sticks randomly, and these sort of things happen all the time. Fortunately, Niedermayer shrugged it off, proving once again that he’s a really colorful character who just oozes enthusiasm and charm. This year’s Ducks were almost as exciting to watch as Niedermayer’s New Jersey Devils, who won three Cups with their flamboyant, offense-first style.

Surely, this legendary, captivating five-game series will begin a rebirth of hockey’s mainstream popularity here in the US. It’s only a matter of time before Ryan Getzlaf and Francois Beauchemin are household names, so watch out, NFL! Your sport’s draft isn’t going to continually double the ratings of the NHL’s championship series for much longer!

Oh, also, Jean-Sebastien Giguere’s pads are really really small and legal.

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LISTEN UP: Scissor Sisters Beat Both Rock and Paper Sisters

Scissor Sisters

  • Between my unwavering love of the Scissor Sisters (reaffirmed by this awesome live concert available at Waves and Wires) and the six Bellinis I drank at the Webbys the other night, I’m beginning to figure things out about myself. Mostly that I really, really seriously do love football, everyone.
  • If you stare at this blog page while listening to LCD Soundsystem long enough, it has the same effect as whatever happened to that dude in “The Lawnmower Man.” (Music Refinery)
  • My roommate and I have been planning to throw a 90s-themed party for a while, and Ingrained Refrains posting an mp3 of Salt-N-Pepa is definitely a sign that the cosmos is on our side.
  • Words and Music dishes out some Thelonious Monk, Blind Lemon Jefferson, Sonny Rollins, and other artists whose names you can use to impress people even if you don’t actually own/enjoy/ever listen to their music.
  • Do you ever not believe something, then watch an entire video of it occurring, and you’re still pretty sure it doesn’t actually exist? Like, I don’t know, Robert Downey Jr. recording a straightfaced, lovelorn ballad? (The Late Greats)

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BWE SPORTS: Urgent Romanian Soccer Update

RomaniaIn one of the funniest sports stories I’ve heard in a while (big upz to Deadspin for the tip), a man named Gigi Becali (presumably a Mel Brooks character), owner of a Romanian soccer team and currently second in the polls to become Romania’s next president, has decided that only hymns and religious music can be played in his team’s home stadium in order to cut down on rowdy play and hooliganism. Says Becali:

“(I will play) only religious songs before the matches, because I’m the one who pays and this is the way I like it… I will take out the song …. ‘We will rock you’. Why play that song? So the players kill each other? Whoever wants (to hear) devil’s music should not come to my stadium.”

Furthermore, players will be fined for having “sad faces,” and will be forced to pay upwards of 30,000 euros if they come off the field looking upset. I’m not sure I need to say much more about this news, mostly because it’s already such a joke, but also because I can’t completely sort out all of my feelings about it. Here are three thoughts.

1) As dumb as this policy seems to me, if a U.S. politician owned a sports franchise and instituted a similar rule, and if they too had the moral defensibility of trying to cut down on fan violence and injuries, would Americans still vote for that person? Obviously Becali feels like it’s helping his political cause in Romania, and I’m not so sure it would totally kill someone’s chances in the U.S. either. Is that a weird thought, or maybe I’m just wrong?

2) If you pumped religious music into Lincoln Financial Field before an Eagles/Cowboys game, or into Fenway Park before a Yanks/Sox game, or into, say, a soccer stadium packed full of rowdy European soccer hooligans, don’t you think the crowds would get a whole, whole lot angrier? Or am I just really out of touch with Romanian pro sports?

3) The song “We Will Rock You” equals The Devil.

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LISTEN UP: They Are Still Just Rats In Cages

Smashing Pumpkins

  • Pornophony has a wealth of live tracks from the newly reunited Smashing Pumpkins. The group actually sounds pretty well rehearsed; Corgan’s voice is a little nasal, but I’m confident he can get to 100% full-on piercingly nasal by the time they tour.
  • I recently missed a free outdoor Animal Collective show in NYC because it was pouring down rain. To make amends for this embarrassing admission, I’m linking The Rawking Refuses to Stop, then dressing up in a tribal costume and playing 10 minutes of indechiperableness on guitar. Then when I’ve completed my regular afternoon routine, I’m gonna think of a way to make amends to Animal Collective.
  • British indie rockers Dogs sure make some nice music, but my question is, how the hell was the name “Dogs” not already taken? Might as well just call yourself “The Band” or something. (Obscure Sound)
  • It’s hard to imagine Akon, Bon Jovi, Kanye West and the Pet Shop Boys hanging out together, but I guess this is close enough. (Bedford Rockers)
  • Last but not least, the lovable Architecture in Helsinki has a pretty cool new single out. You can download the mp3 and some remixes over at Missingtoof, or you can just tune into pretty much any Top 40 radio station, which I’m sure will be playing it.

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BWE SPORTS: Hooked on the Niedermayer Brothas

Mario and Luigi

  • The Anaheim Ducks held off the Ottawa Senators last night, 3-2, and are now one victory away from winning the Stanley Cup. Ducks teammates Scott and Rob Neidermayer are on the verge of the greatest accomplishment by a brothers duo since that glorious summer in fifth grade when Mario and Luigi finally beat “Mario 3″ without warping.
  • Coney Island’s minor-league Brooklyn Cyclones played baseball for 24 straight hours against a rotating array of opponents, including sideshow freaks, circus clowns, and a group of tee-ballers. The bizarre charity event was concocted after the team’s original idea – “play baseball with Mo Vaughn” – was deemed too unsettling for New Yorkers.
  • Tour de France commissioner Christian Prudhomme publicly admitted that he cannot guarantee that this year’s race will be completely drug-free. Similarly, NFL commissioner Roger Goodell announced that he also cannot guarantee that the upcoming football season will be completely free of players training dogs to fight each another.
  • Continuing Alex Rodriguez Headline-Gate, ESPN’s Page 2 compiles an amusing collection of some of A-Rod’s past New York Post covers. I personally think the article would have been funnier if they’d Photoshopped joke covers instead of just using a bunch of real ones.
  • Finally, in a rare clash of music and sports that I guess I’m obligated to cover, this person is claiming that Win Butler from Arcade Fire stole his basketball at a gym. Presumably, the pickup game involved 15 people playing at once and devolved into guys pounding drumsticks onto each others’ helmets. (via Gorilla vs Bear)

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LISTEN UP: Rock ‘n’ Honor Roll

Bono Brisbane

  • In honor of Bono being honored with an honorary award from the Council of Fashion Designers of America, Scatter o’ Light posts three rough (and slow-downloading) U2 studio tracks. If you want to honor Bono further, or any other rock star from Mick Jagger to Joey Ramone to Zack Morris, head over to Band Madness and vote for your favorite lead singers – all rock stars need our support.
  • In more honorable news, Ladybug Transistor are holding a memorial concert for the late San Fadyl tonight in Williamsburg, Brooklyn. Here are two Ladybug Transistor tracks on Brooklyn Vegan, in case you live in New York and are interested in going to a concert you can feel good about for a reason other than making fun of your friends who didn’t go to it.
  • “She Doesn’t Get It” by folkish-pop outfit The Format is pretty damn catchy. They’re going to be giving away their entire album for free, so be sure grab this mp3 now when it’s free but still feels like it’s illegal. (Hate Something Beautiful)
  • The Shout Out Louds almost share their name with a Kiss song, but their music sounds nothing at all like Kiss. So, you know, feel free to download away. (Stereogum)
  • Finally, after signing a deal with Volkswagen to have their songs featured in commercials, Wilco issued a statement on their website saying, more or less, that with commercial radio avenues dwindling, they felt that commercials would simply allow the songs to have some more exposure. What unreasonable, soulless sellouts. (I Guess I’m Floating)