September 29, 2006

Hello world!

Posted in Blogroll at 6:28 am by berzerkeleyan

I’ve been a blogger on Live Journal for a bit. Figured I’d try these blogging tools as well to see which of the two appeals more.

September 25, 2006

Phoenix — Wonder Ballroom, Portland, OR

Posted in concerts, music at 11:20 pm by berzerkeleyan

The set:

  1. Napolean Says
  2. Long Distance Call
  3. Run Run Run
  4. Consolation Prizes
  5. Rally
  6. Lost & Found
  7. Courtesy Laughs
  8. I’m An Actor
  9. Everything is Everything
  10. North
  11. Sometimes in the Fall
  12. If I Ever Feel Better
  13. Funky Squaredance


  1. Too Young
  2. Second to None

This was a great concert, for several reasons:

  1. This is one of my favorite current bands. I’ve been dying to see them for over six years. They would have had to have played two songs, spit on us, call us Dirty Americans, and walk out before I thought it was a bad concert. And even then I would have considered it “an artistic statement.”
  2. The venue was small, made even smaller by the low turnout. Maybe three hundred people showed up. I like intimate settings for shows. Plus, we were an enthusiastic bunch.
  3. They were tight tight TIGHT! Solid musicians.
  4. They clearly enjoyed playing for us, and with each other.

As sunny and easy going as their music is, they had us jumping around like dogs begging for snasauges. Even an old man like me was clappin’ like a fool. And I don’t normally do the group participation thing.

I regret not having enough money to get a shirt (too many vodka tonics; gosh that cute bartender made them strong). Now all the kids won’t know how cool I am. :(

September 24, 2006

Tonight's Top Ten List

Posted in wet shaving at 4:30 pm by berzerkeleyan

My Top Ten Shaving Creams:

  1. Musgo Real — to my face and olfactory bulb, this has the best combination of latherability, lubricity, and smell. It leaves my face so smooth afterwards, that there’s really no need for any aftershave balm. The best of the best.
  2. The Body Shop — it’s got a light cologne-like aroma, so it’s not my favorite scent. But my face feels so good afterwards that I have to put this one at number two.
  3. Proraso — this one’s all about the slickness, and the cool rush when washing it off after the shave. It’s an excellent summertime cream.
  4. Taylor of Old Bond Street Avocado — this smells like Williams-Sonoma Basil soap, so it’s a very clean scent. And it’s quite slick from the avocado oil.
  5. Nancy Boy — a top cream by many. It’s good, no doubt about it.
  6. Taylor of Old Bond Street Lavender — one of my favorite smells of the bunch.
  7. Crabtree & Evelyn Almond — this smells like bug spray to me. But it lathers and conditions my skin really well.
  8. Tom’s of Maine Mint — true to the manufacturer’s credo, there are no artificial ingredients here. Just lots of natural oils and goodness.
  9. Taylor of Old Bond Street Eton College — the first upper echelon cream I ever purchased. It’s no longer in heavy rotation, though I still like the scent.
  10. Geo F. Trumper Violet — the fragrance is pleasant enough. But this one isn’t as slick as the rest, and leaves my face kinda dry afterwards.

This list will, no doubt, continually change, as I try new creams and the weather changes. But after a couple of months of full-bore wet shaving, this is the order.

Weekly Rotation — 18 Sep

Posted in music at 3:24 pm by berzerkeleyan

The Smiths “The Queen is Dead” (1986) — twenty years later…still as bleak as ever.
‘Til Tuesday “Welcome Home” (1986) — it started to rain again this week. I thought it was appropriate to mark the occasion with the most depressing album I own.
Dokken “One Live Night” (1996) — Dokken: they don’t suck.
Tindersticks “Can Our Love…” (2001)
Josh Clayton-Felt “Spirit Touches Ground” (2002)
David Gray “A New Day at Midnight” (2002)
Grandaddy “Just Like the Fambly Cat” (2006)
Phoenix “It’s Never Been Like That” (2006) — I’m off to see them tomorrow. The next day…Starsailor.
The Toadies “Rubberneck” (1994)
Squeeze “Cosi Fan Tutti Frutti” (1985)
Guns N’ Roses “Appetite for Destruction” (1987)
Arcadia “So Red the Rose” (1985)
Black Rebel Motorcycle Club “B.R.M.C.” (2000)

September 17, 2006

Weekly Rotation — 11 Sep

Posted in music at 7:50 pm by berzerkeleyan

For the week:

Black Rebel Motorcycle Club “Howl” (2005) — get it. You won’t regret it.
Doves “Some Cities” (2005)
Elbow “Asleep in the Back” (2001)
Elbow “Leaders of the Free World” (2005)
Fiona Apple “Extraordinary Machine” (2005)
Matthew Sweet “Girlfriend” (1991)
Magnet “The Tourniquet” (2005)
Magnet “On Your Side” (2003)
Josh Clayton-Felt “Spirit Touches Ground” (2002)
Feeder “Comfort in Sound” (2003) — lately, for whatever reason, I’ve been hankering to listen to this album more and more. After three years, it’s still catchy and poignant.

September 8, 2006

Wait for it…

Posted in concerts, music at 10:05 pm by berzerkeleyan

Last night I met up with . She was in town for MusicFestNW — three days of concerts spread throughout various Portland nightclubs. We went to the highlight of the festival: The Brian Jonestown Massacre, followed by The Dandy Warhols. I had never seen either live, so I was really looking forward to a great show.

After suffering through the standard opening act, TBJM came on and played their set. Given their reputation, I watched them very carefully. I was not only riveted by the music and musicianship of the band, but I was also watching the leader, Anton Newcombe. For those not in the know, he sort of, um, has a reputation for very public meltdowns. In the middle of concerts. So anytime he approached one of the other musicians, or bantered with the audience, I sort of cringed a bit, half-expecting him to go off on something or someone.

TBJM played for just over an hour. And they were really REALLY good. After the standard break between primary set and encore, they came out again and began playing the one song I had been waiting to hear: “Evergreen” from “Methodrone” (1995).

And then…

…and then…

…Anton Newcombe walked off the stage in a huff.

It wasn’t clear what set him off. Either his guitarist was out of tune, or his own guitar was. I was obviously disappointed that he left before finishing the full set. It only reminded me of how frustrated most fans get when reflecting on what could have been. TBJM could have been one of the biggest bands out there. Their music is catchy and timeless. Instead, they’re everyone’s favorite train wreck.

To a certain extent, I got the full TBJM treatment, warts and all. I got to see them play for just over an hour, then implode. So for entertainment’s sake, I got my money’s worth. And fortunately for , she’s seeing them again tonight in Seattle. Hopefully they make it through the entire show tonight.

The Dandy Warhols…oh yeah, them. We left after a few songs. They seemed to be mailing it in. Sadly, everyone else lapped it up.

No matter. I saw who I wanted to see.

September 4, 2006

The Rotation

Posted in music at 9:09 pm by berzerkeleyan

For the past week:

“American Gigolo” Soundtrack (1980) Rooney “Rooney” (2003)
The Beach Boys “Pet Sounds” (1966) Feeder “Comfort in Sound” (2003)
Ian Brown “Solarized” (2004) Kent “Isola” (1988)
Loverboy “Loverboy” (1980) Loverboy “Get Lucky” (1981)
Zero 7 “When It Falls” (2004) Thievery Corporation “The Richest Man in Babylon” (2002)

Cool Ad

Posted in wet shaving at 1:42 pm by berzerkeleyan

It’s old and obnoxious. But it’s cool to me.

Gillette Ad

And now it’s hanging in my bathroom, smartly framed.