Thursday, December 27, 2012

U2 2013 & Album Rankings

Rumor has it U2 will release a new album sometime in 2013, probably late summer or fall, with a tour following it. U2 always comes up with great ideas for a tour, so expect something unique again, much like "The Claw" from the record breaking "U2 360 Tour". Rumor has it most of the shows will be arena shows this time around. Julian Lennon (John Lennon's son) said they are interested in possibly using one of his photographs as the cover.

1. Achtung Baby (1991) - U2 didn't just "chop down the Joshua tree" (as they've said), they sent it through a wood chipper with songs like "Zoo Station," "The Fly" and "Acrobat." Achtung Baby was a much darker album than people were used to from them. They embraced alternative rock, as well as dance and electronic music. It's so hard to pick a top song, because each one can probably lay claim to it. Anyone who hasn't heard this album must do it now. The accompanying Zoo TV Tour is possibly the most original & creative concert tour of all time, so the "Zoo TV Live from Sydney" DVD is also worth picking up.
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2. The Joshua Tree (1987) - The Grammy-winning album that sent them into the stratosphere. It's their best-selling album, with classics such as "With or Without You," "Where the Streets Have No Name" and "I Still Haven't Found What I'm Looking For." This was a more mainstream sound than their early-80s post-punk albums, also showing their versatility in songwriting. The most underrated song on the album is "Exit" which starts with a slow build then explodes into a loud rocker. I'm a sucker for that. From top to bottom it feels like the album is full of radio friendly hits.

3. All That You Can't Leave Behind (2000) - It's not their most creative album, but the songs very simply kick ass and never seem to get old as the years go by. Another big Grammy winner, it features the amazing "Beautiful Day" as well as other hits like "Elevation" and "Walk On." One of their best tracks, "Kite", was never released as a single and shows that even the deeper tracks on this album have as much, and maybe more, strength than the singles. Often called U2's third masterpiece after Achtung Baby & The Joshua Tree. It took U2 into the 21st Century in the most perfect way, and they haven't looked back.

4. War (1983) - My favorite of their pre-Joshua Tree albums, this has a lot of energy for a politically charged album, their first album that deals with politics and war. "Sunday Bloody Sunday" and "New Year's Day" are the well-known tracks, but most of the album has songs that are equally as good. War is one of their hardest rockers taking what they did on the first two albums to the next level. "Two Hearts Beat as One" is a rocker that makes you want to get up and move, U2 is always good at that. This is the album that proved they were more than a one hit wonder.

5. No Line On The Horizon (2009) - This one isn’t very mainstream, but it all flows together nicely, definitely an underrated album. It's a bit more experimental than the other U2 albums from the 2000s. "Breathe," "Magnificent," "Unknown Caller" and "Moment of Surrender" all stand out. It's their most visual album along with The Unforgettable Fire. "Get on Your Boots" is a good song, but is much better the way they perform it live with a different intro. Bono said the album would be more experimental that the previous two, but they probably could have taken that further.

Friday, December 21, 2012

NRA Head Blames Mortal Kombat

Wayne LaPierre of the NRA blamed 'Mortal Kombat' and movies like 'American Psycho' and 'Natural Born Killers' for gun violence during a ridiculous press conference meant to address the Newtown Tragedy. Apparently he just walked out of 1994. This press conference was basically to protect gun manufacturers, not even the individual owners. The only bad thing Mortal Kombat has done was give the Kardashians the idea to chance every "C" to a "K".

Its nothing but a total cop out and PR stunt meant to deflect attention elsewhere, by focusing on the entertainment industry. What's next, going to blame a robbery on Catwoman? Well I can put a big fat stop to that argument right now.

1. Mortal Kombat and other video games are extremely popular in Japan, even more than in the USA. Yet Japan is also the safest country in the world, as well as one of the most peaceful. Apparently they aren't affected by seeing Raiden shoot lightning from his hands, or Kitana throw sharp fans. Try again NRA.

2. So what do you blame for all the violence before the 1990s? To name a few: Son of Sam, Charles Manson, Bonnie & Clyde, 1966 University of Texas shooter, Ted Bundy, Hitler & the Nazi's, the mafia & gangsters of the 20th century, the catholic church killing "heretics" during the inquisition, the KKK, etc. I didn't know they all had access to video games and action movies.

Its up to parents to take more responsibility. If they have a kid (or know an adult) with clear issues and mental problems, they need to keep them away from BOTH guns and violent entertainment, both of which millions of people enjoy without ever doing harm to others. So instead of throwing blame somewhere else, it would be wise to actually get out in communities to educate people and do your part to make the world a better place.

Sane people with guns don't kill, entertainment doesn't kill - Lunatics kill. The US needs to find a way to keep guns away from criminals & mentally ill people, and part of that means families need to step up. The NRA dropped the ball today, and should have addressed that to try and be part of the solution, rather than placing blame on fictional entertainment. They could have come out in support of "Smart Gun Technology", which uses fingerprints registered to the gun owner, so nobody else would be able to fire their gun. They claim its "expensive". So what, you can't put a price on safety. The auto industry has added so many safety enhancements to cars, such as multiple airbags as one example, which cost more money but keep people safer. But, I guess we shouldn't have expected anything better from them.

Mayan Apocalypse Strikes!

December 21, 2012 is upon us, and we have an exclusive photo out of Tokyo just moments ago, while it was still 12/20 for us on the East Coast. It looks like we have a dreadful day ahead of us, as Tokyo is currently under siege, correctly predicted by the Mayans. Mount Fuji has unexpectedly erupted, sending lava into the city while a UFO has made its presence known along with Mothra. Where is Godzilla (the friendly one) when you need him? I promise this is not a photoshop image. Literally.

It seems some asteroids have begun blitzing areas. Cue Aerosmith's "I Don't Want to Miss a Thing".

And out of Finland, you can see a trampoline has wreaked havoc below.

Thursday, December 13, 2012

12-12-12 Concert Rocks the Garden

The 121212 Concert rocked Madison Square Garden last night, as well as maybe 2 billion people watching around the world.

- As expected there was the fusion of The Beatles and Nirvana, when Paul McCartney teamed up with Dave Grohl, Krist Novoselic and Pat Smear to perform a rocking new song called "Cut Me Some Slack". The song was written in just one day, and it sounded a bit like a cross between The Beatles' "Helter Skelter", which Paul opened with, and Nirvana's "Breed". It was definitely a great moment to watch. And you could hear Dave Grohl comment after while leaving the stage, "that was fucking awesome!" We all agree! McCartney had the set of the night, and is still trending on twitter as I write this. Definitely some unexpected songs thrown in.

- McCartney brought out a bunch of the heroes of Hurricane Sandy and then Alicia Keys performed "Empire State of Mind" with all of them on stage, which was a perfect way to cap off the excellent show. Keys also provided the "lighter moment" of the night during her earlier set, only with cell phones instead of lighters of course. Loved seeing MSG glowing all around her.

- Chris Martin of Coldplay had the joke of the night, saying "I know you wanted One Direction but its way past their bedtime, so that's why you get one quarter of Coldplay." He also brought out Michael Stipe of R.E.M.

- Kanye West wore a leather skirt. Maybe he borrowed it from Kim Kardashian's closet?

- The Rolling Stones had a quick two song set, though they were added at the last minute, and have another show on their tour tonight. Mick Jagger must have made people watching who are 30 years younger feel bad about themselves for not being able to move as good as he can. He certainly showed what the "moves like Jagger" really are.

-New Jersey's own Bruce Springsteen of course, with Bon Jovi a couple sets after. Jon joined Springsteen during his set, and Bruce joined Bon Jovi during theirs much to the delight of the crowd. Billy Joel also got one of the biggest reactions of the night.

-Howard Stern fans rejoice, It wouldn't be a New York show without a "Baba Booey!" shout making it through, which happened during Billy Crystal's speech.

-Roger Waters and Eddie Vedder did a fine job performing some Pink Floyd classics. The Who also performed a long set, and sounded much better than they did at the Super Bowl a few years ago.

You can pre-order the live album on iTunes or wait for it to come out on CD everywhere. All proceeds go to the Robin Hood Foundation.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

12-12-12 Concert TONIGHT

People all over the world can watch the 121212 Concert tonight starting at 7:30pm ET. There are already plenty of rumors about some of the surprises in store for the concert, which will help raise money for the Robin Hood Foundation for Hurricane Sandy relief. A ton of channels will be showing it, such as AMC, Fuse, and HBO. Check the website for more.

One such rumor that has been virtually confirmed is that Dave Grohl and Krist Novoselic will be reuniting as Nirvana, with Paul McCartney taking over Kurt Cobain's vocals! A fusion of the biggest musical act of the 1960s & all time, The Beatles, with the biggest band of the 1990s, Nirvana. Apparently they will be performing a new song.

Eddie Vedder of Pearl Jam will also be singing Pink Floyd's "Comfortably Numb" with original Pink Floyd member Roger Waters.

With The Rolling Stones performing, one can also wonder who might join them onstage to take the female vocals if they perform "Gimme Shelter"? Lady Gaga is doing it at their concert on Saturday, so might she show up? Or Mary J Blige, who performed it with them in London?

Friday, December 7, 2012

121212 Concert Details

The 121212 Concert for Hurricane Sandy relief seems to be getting bigger by the day. A new addition was just announced today - The Rolling Stones. The lineup now features the iconic band in addition to: Paul McCartney, Bon Jovi, Alicia Keys, Dave Grohl, Bruce Springsteen, Kanye West, Eric Clapton, The Who, Eddie Vedder, Roger Waters, Billy Joel and Chris Martin. We'll see if any other artists are added to the show in the coming days, but this is already a stellar lineup.

Fear not those of you who couldn't get tickets to the massive show at Madison Square Garden. It will be shown live across 34 different TV networks, as well as online and in select movie theaters. And not just in the United States, it will be shown across every continent reaching one billion people worldwide.

The proceeds will benefit the Robin Hood Fund. Music always seems to be the best way to both make people affected by tragedy feel better, as well as raise money and awareness to help a cause. The show should be a great one, make sure you tune in to one of the many channels on December 12th!

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Trailer for 'The Heat'

The Heat is an upcoming action-comedy film that you should be excited about. It reunites Melissa McCarthy with Bridesmaids director Paul Feig and also stars Sandra Bullock, who makes her return to comedy. The script was written by Kate Dippold, from NBC's outstanding Parks and Recreation. I didn't even need to see the trailer to realize this would be a great movie, but the trailer has been released (watch below) and confirmed what was expected.

Bullock and McCarthy play FBI agents who must team up to take down a Russian mobster. Should be great to see Bullock in an R-rated comedy this time around. The film is in theaters on April 5, 2013.

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Ben Savage & Danielle Fishel Join Girl Meets World

90s kids can all rejoice today. One of our favorite shows from our favorite decade, Boy Meets World is returning to TV in sequel form with Girl Meets World. Yesterday it was confirmed that Ben Savage and Danielle Fishel had signed on to reprise their roles as Cory and Topanga. The new series will air on the Disney Channel, so the jury is still out on if it will be any good, but let's hope! Original creator Michael Jacobs is developing it, so there is hope.

Girl Meets World is about their 13-year-old daughter Riley, and now Cory is a middle school teacher, exactly who he used to torment. No word on if Mr Feeny or any other original castmember besides Fishel & Savage will be back, but one can assume some might be. We all know the infamous Lauren from the Ski Lodge won't be.

Boy Meets World ran on ABC from 1993 to 2000, as part of the famous TGIF lineup. Because this new version is on the Disney Channel, does that mean it can't be as edgy as it should be? Hopefully they can find a good balance and make it more interesting than the corny kids shows currently on the Disney Channel. They're obviously going to attract a broader and older audience to this, at least initially.

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Sprinklers Turn on During Dolphins-Seahawks Game

During the 3rd quarter of the NFL game between the Miami Dolphins and Seattle Seahawks in Miami, the sprinklers all of a sudden shot up and started spraying the field. Immediately everyone referenced the Buffalo Wild Wings commercial all over Twitter, and now some smart person has spliced in footage from the game with the actual Buffalo Wild Wings commercial on YouTube, which you can watch below.
The official word on what happened is that the computer was still on the Saturday schedule, which is why it happened at 3pm exactly. Regardless, the game seemed to wake up afterwards. The first half was slow, but the game finished with tons of action after the sprinklers surprised everyone, with the Dolphins beating the Seahawks 24-21 with a last second Field Goal. Maybe they should try it again next week when the Dolphins take on the rival Patriots?

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Noomi Rapace & The Rolling Stones

The Rolling Stones have released their new music video (watch below) for the song "Doom and Gloom" off their career-spanning hits set "GRRR!" which was released last week. The new video stars Noomi Rapace, known to Americans for her roles in the hit films Prometheus and Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows. She also starred in the Swedish versions of The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo trilogy as Lisbeth Salander.

Props to The Rolling Stones for still kicking ass after 50 years and releasing a fairly imaginative music video to an energetic new song. The video features a scene with ZOMBIES, which automatically makes it great in my book. The Stones will be playing a few concerts soon in London and the New York area, and rumors are they might play more dates in 2013. One such rumor is that they'll be one of the three headliners for the Glastonbury Festival in 2013, which makes its return after taking a year off. It was last headlined by U2, Beyonce and Coldplay.

They also released their first official app to the iTunes store. Looks like they'll be rocking beyond their 50th year. Mick Jagger still just wants to know, "Baby won't you dance with me?"

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Amazon MP3 Black Friday Deals

Amazon MP3 is known for giving great deals on MP3 albums, which has helped them slowly carve out a following from the mighty iTunes. They've released their Black Friday week deals early, with 29 pages worth of albums starting at $3.99, which you can see by clicking here.

I'll list some of the better deals for you here, though there are plenty more. You might want to stock up on some new music like a squirrel stocking up on nuts for the winter. Or maybe you just need some new tunes to block out the Thanksgiving family arguments and/or critical in-laws. You're welcome!

"Battle Born" - The Killers. "4th Street Feeling" - Melissa Etheridge. "My Head is an Animal" - Of Monsters and Men. "Channel Orange" - Frank Ocean. "Ceremonials" & "Lungs" - Florence + The Machine. "R.E.D." - Ne-Yo. "The Spirit Indestructible" - Nelly Furtado. "Greatest Hits" & "Appetite for Destruction" - Guns N' Roses. "Speak Now" - Taylor Swift. "Push and Shove" - No Doubt. "Evanescence" & "Fallen" - Evanescence. "Greatest Hits" - Queen. "Rocket Man: Number Ones" - Elton John. "MDNA" & "Confessions on a Dance floor" - Madonna. "My Life II" - Mary J Blige. "Merry Christmas II You" - Mariah Carey. "Life is Good" - Nas. "Hands All Over" & "Overexposed" - Maroon 5. "Kisses on the Bottom" - Paul McCartney. "1984" - Van Halen. "Tuskegee" - Lionel Richie.

"Wasting Light" - Foo Fighters. "Funhouse" - Pink. "Icky Thump" - The White Stripes. "Whitney Houston" - Whitney Houston. "Purple Rain" - Prince. "50 Big Ones" - The Beach Boys. "The Lumineers" - The Lumineers. "¡UNO!" - Green Day. "El Camino" - The Black Keys. "Doo Wops & Hooligans" - Bruno Mars. "The Doors" - The Doors. "Aim and Ignite" - Fun. "Rumours" - Fleetwood Mac. "R&B Diva" - Faith Evans. "The Band Perry" - The Band Perry. "Jagged Little Pill" & "Havoc and Bright Lights" - Alanis Morissette. "Kaleidoscope Dream" - Miguel. "The Suburbs" - Arcade Fire. "Clockwork Angels" - Rush.

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Jurassic Park 3D Poster & Trailer

"65 Million Years in the making." 2013 marks the 20th Anniversary of the 1993 hit Jurassic Park, one of the greatest and most successful blockbuster movies of all time. The film is being re-released in 3D on April 5, 2013. If there is any movie that deserves the 3D re-release treatment, its this one. Who doesn't want to watch dinosaurs coming at them in 3D? Well, maybe people like Rick Santorum & Michele Bachmann who think the earth is just a few thousand years old, but that's another story. The best scene will have to be where the T-Rex is chasing the Jeep. Perfect for 3D.

The Steven Spielberg classic still looks outstanding, the combination of CGI and Animatronics make it look better than some movies that are released now. The 90s were a great time for advancements in movie technology, and Jurassic Park set the standard after Terminator 2: Judgment Day scratched the surface.

Laura Dern, Sam Neill, Jeff Goldblum and Samuel L Jackson all starred in it. Jurassic Park 4 is still on the horizon, though no word yet on which characters will be back. Anyway, the trailer for the 3D version is below, and while there is obviously nothing new, it still transports you back to when you first saw the film. It was one of the first movies I saw in theaters, and this is the type of movie you want to see on the big screen. I dare you not to get even the smallest amount of chills when the familiar music by John Williams kicks in. 

Sunday, November 4, 2012

The Walking Dead: Killer Within

Oh. Shit. Its safe to say when fans of The Walking Dead on AMC sat down to watch tonights episode "Killer Within," they didn't expect two main characters to be killed off. Its just the fourth episode, but once again, they show that nobody is safe on The Walking Dead.

We lost both Lori (Sarah Wayne Callies) and T-Dog (Robert "IronE" Singleton) in tonight's wild episode. Everything went to hell when the fences went down and zombies infiltrated the prison. T-Dog was bitten, then knowing he would die anyway, charged some zombies to help Carol (Melissa McBride) escape. Speaking of Carol, we aren't sure yet if she survived after escaping the hallway they were in. Lori died when she was separated with Maggie (Lauren Cohan) and Carl (Chandler Riggs), and went into labor. Maggie had to cut the baby out to save it, and Lori died in the process, with Carl having to finish her off so she wouldn't become a zombie.

It was a surprisingly intense & emotional episode so soon into the third season, but once again showed that they won't hold back with the show. They will adapt characters' fates from comics to TV even if they have to kill off a fan favorite or main character, even if they don't exactly follow the comics completely, which they don't. The addition of new characters like Michonne (Danai Gurira) and The Governor (David Morrissey) helps them easily transition.

This is the reason it is one of the best shows on TV, and the highest rated show in cable history. The ratings for this seasons premiere became the highest rated premiere in the 18-49 demographic of any show on TV, the first time a cable show has achieved that. And this wild ride of unbelievable episodes is going to continue, as stated on their official twitter page: "That was only episode 4. We have four more to go before we can pick our jaws up off the floor."

Saturday, November 3, 2012

Fox & Friends Needs A Reality Check

"Fox and Friends" is mostly known for being spoofed on Saturday Night Live in expert fashion for their constant falsehoods and crazy statement, but they've just taken their latest to a new level.

On Friday morning, they critizized NBC's "Hurricane Sandy: Coming Together" concert which aired later that night. They wondered whether it was all a ploy by NBC to help out President Obama. They also questioned why it was before the election and not after. Gee, maybe because people need HELP right NOW? These benefit concerts air every time there is a major disaster...but because "Fox & Friends" is so ridiculous and so obsessed with the election, they of course had to make themselves look like complete idiots.

I'm pretty sure when I watched Jon Bon Jovi perform, he didn't yell "vote Obama!" into the microphone. And I'm pretty sure there were no political ads, just stories showcasing the devastation and people who are in need. All the artists had ties to the areas. Bon Jovi and Bruce Springsteen are New Jersey staples. Mary J Blige is from Yonkers, NY, Christina Aguilera was born in Staten Island. Aerosmith spent a lot of time in New York City, though their career kicked off in Boston. Billy Joel is another New York staple.

Get a grip "Fox and Friends," maybe you should have your own benefit and actually do some good like NBC did.

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Halloween Playlist

Happy Halloween! Need a Halloween themed playlist to scare up your day? I've thought up a few obvious and not so obvious songs for you to listen to or download.

1. The Beatles - "Revolution 9". The experimental avant garde track from 1968's The White Album is 8 minutes of "What the fuck?" It doesn't make sense, but a fun song to listen to around this time of year for its creepy sounds filled throughout. 

2. Michael Jackson - "Thriller". Well, this is the obvious one. The music video is the way to go, and pretty much everyone has heard this song and seen the video already. Listening to this around Halloween is the same as watching "It's the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown." A must for everyone. 

3. The Rolling Stones - "Sympathy for the Devil". A song sung from the point of view of Lucifer himself, the devil. Is there anything else you need to know? 

4. Bette Midler - "I Put a Spell on You". Not originally her song, but this version stands out for being in the Halloween classic Hocus Pocus. And there's Sarah Jessica Parker pre-Sex and the City

5. The Cranberries - "Zombie". Zombies are in right now more than ever thanks to the massive record breaking success of The Walking Dead

6. Stevie Wonder - "Superstition". Possibly his most famous song, its also another perfect song for Halloween. The song brings up many of the popular superstitions that exist in our culture. 

7. U2 - "Until the End of the World". This one is especially good for the 2012 edition of Halloween, with all the Mayan calendar hooplah going on. 

8. The Nightmare Before Christmas cast - "This is Halloween". The song is made specifically for today's holiday, and is best listened to while watching the scene in the film itself.

9. David Bowie - "Scary Monsters (and Super Creeps)". You can tell this is creepy from the title, and the song is about a woman who turns mad. 

10. Lady Gaga - "Judas". How about a more recent song? Its not really about the devil, the devil is more of a metaphor in this song. Plus, Lady Gaga tends to scare some people, as well as dress up like its Halloween more than just on October 31. 

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Atlantic City Boardwalks Destroyed by Hurricane Sandy

The home of Boardwalk Empire has a new sight to it after being hit hard by Hurricane Sandy. The famous boardwalks of Atlanic City, New Jersey are gone, as water fills most of the streets, while sand fills streets in other locations that aren't buried with water. Some buildings that were near the boardwalk have also been reduced to their foundations thanks to the powerful storm surge. Its sad to see something so well known and historic be destroyed in a few hours. Over on Casino Pier in Seaside, the roller coaster is now in the ocean after the boardwalk there went down with it. 

Meanwhile, Atlantic City mayor Lorenzo Langford wants to confront Governor Chris Christie following criticisms. Taking Boardwalk Empire a little too seriously there. Worry about fixing everything first, please.

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Print This For Motivation

I decided to make a quick little motivational/inspirational picture for people to print our or make as a computer wallpaper and enjoy on a daily basis. If you're ever feeling overwhelmed or stressed, this will no doubt get you through your day. Enjoy! (click to make it bigger)

Instant stress relief, with a little help from your friends Lindsay Lohan, Charlie Sheen and Britney Spears.

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Listen to The Rolling Stones' "Doom and Gloom"

Caution: Will make you want moves like Jagger. 'Doom and Gloom', the first new song from The Rolling Stones in seven years, was just released to radio and for purchase on iTunes today. I have a feeling this will easily become a favorite for many Rolling Stones fans, and maybe even convert some new ones. Check it out:

When I first heard the song I thought it could easily stand on similar footing with 'Start Me Up'. That's the song from their catalog it most closely resembles, which is obviously a good thing. Its a loud, energetic song that really does make you want to move and dance as Mick Jagger previously said. They had to put out a rollicking song like this in the wake of Maroon 5's 'Moves Like Jagger', and he'll surely be moving again when they hit the stage later this fall in New York and London.

'Doom and Gloom' probably blasts past most peoples' expectations before hearing it. Amazing that they could release a song like this 50 years in their legendary career. Props to Jagger, Keith Richards, Charlie Watts, and Ronnie Wood for continuing to make us feel good.

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

The Rolling Stones New Single "Doom & Gloom"

'Doom and Gloom', the new single by The Rolling Stones, will be released on Thursday October 11th to radio and for sale on iTunes (and hopefully Amazon). It marks the first new song by Mick Jagger, Keith Richards & Co since their last studio album, A Bigger Bang, was released in 2005. The song will also be one of two new tracks on their upcoming career spanning hits set GRRR! which comes out on November 12th.

Jagger says, "It’s called Doom & Gloom, though it’s a really raunchy rocker you can dance to & not gloomy at all! It was fun and quick to record, & Jeff Bhaskar has done a great mix. Hope you like it." It will be played for the first time on BBC Radio 2 at 8:15 am British time. Should be interesting to hear what they've come up with 50 years into their career.

Richards also said that the band will be playing more shows in London and New York than previously announced. He didn't say when the dates will be, but presumably later this fall or early winter.

Friday, October 5, 2012

Listen to "Skyfall" from Adele

Adele has released her much anticipated new song "Skyfall" from the upcoming James Bond movie of the same name. Daniel Craig reprises his role as 007, and ever since Adele was announced to be performing the theme song, everyone has been buzzing about it. The film itself releases on October 26, 2012 in the UK and November 9, 2012 in the USA & elsewhere.

The song lives up to the hype and opens perfectly with a little James Bond style intro that quickly turns into the piano driven song you would expect. It increasingly speeds up though, which makes a good fit for the spy/action film it accompanies. Some familiar 007 themes are heard throughout, and the song is pretty much a guarantee to be a hit on radio, as well as cementing itself as the best Bond theme ever. Listen below.

Monday, October 1, 2012

September 2012: Out with a Bang

The regular NFL referees made their return this week after the Seahawks-Packers Monday Night Football controversy. There were still complaints and boo-birds brought out, including a "refs still suck" chant in Green Bay. Though it was a welcome sight that the NFL got this done. By the way, the Packers won and Seahawks lost, which probably made a few people happy.

The Miami Dolphins lost to the Arizona Cardinals in overtime, even after setting records. Ryan Tannehill broke Dan Marino's Dolphin record for most passing yards in a game by a rookie, and fell 1 yard shy of the NFL record. A week after missing two make-able field goals against the sloppy Jets, kicker Dan Carpenter missed another. It was a 51 yard try, no easy feat, but it was inside a dome without any wind. Someone call Ace Ventura, it looks like Ray Finkle is back and terrorizing us Dolphins fans. The luck ran out for the Jets though, who could be heading for last place after getting destroyed at home. The Dolphins need to find more points and learn how to pull away from teams. You can't have the #1 Run Defense, #5 Run Offense, #1 Wide Receiver (surprisingly & temporarily) and keep losing.

Some TV shows made their returns. Homeland, which dominated the Emmy Awards, returned to Showtime with its biggest ratings ever and didn't miss a beat. Claire Danes & Damian Lewis proved why they won the Drama Awards, picking up right where they left off. I've anointed Claire Danes as the "Charlize Theron of Television" for her rapid rise as an actress who can do anything. Her character Carrie is back on a mission for the CIA, and back to (almost) normal, after her mental breakdown that ended last season.

Revenge, ABC's guilty pleasure, came back with a bang as if there was any other way. Victoria is alive in the witness protection program, though still plotting against people, and nobody should be surprised. Also, the dude who played Shang Tsung in the Mortal Kombat movie (Cary-Hiroyuki Tagawa) took over the role of Takeda. So that's where you probably recognized him from. They should let him say "your soul is mine" at least once.

And props to The Simpsons for starting their 24th Season, going to New York City for the first time since Season 9. They made the Metro North platform look way too clean though.

Also, Lindsay Lohan got in a fight with some guy over cell phone pictures taken of her. Why is she out at 4 AM anyway? She doesn't even deserve a career at this point. If Lohan really wants to shock people, go home and read a book or something. Nothing good will happen to you after midnight.

Thursday, September 27, 2012

The Beatles Catalog Back on Vinyl

In 2009, new remastered versions of The Beatles' studio albums were released on CD to replace the 80s versions which featured sub-par sound for the world's most popular musicians. In 2010 they were finally released digitally on iTunes. Since then they've been talking about re-releasing them to vinyl like the original albums obviously were, and it finally happen on November 13th. Every studio album, plus Past Masters will be released to vinyl using the remastered sound both individually and in a limited edition box set. The box set includes a huge 252-page book and collector case. But of course for those who don't want to spend a fortune, you can just buy your favorite albums separately. These are the stereo versions, mono versions will be released in 2013.

Each album will be identical to the original albums, for example The White Album will feature the cards and poster that came with the LP when it was released in 1968. Sgt Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band will come with the cutouts, and the Magical Mystery Tour album will have the 24-page book which featured a comic based on the film. The film is also being re-released to blu-ray and DVD with bonus footage and interviews. If you don't know what to buy for someone this Christmas, one or more of these vinyl records make a great piece of memorabilia.

Vinyl Record sales have been increasing each year in the 2000s, and obviously will increase further with this release appealing to collectors, people who want the albums with the vinyl sound or just those who want the large artwork. Over the past few years only Abbey Road was available on vinyl, and was the best selling vinyl record each year. There is obviously a demand for Beatles vinyl records, so it will be interesting to see how much of a boost this gives.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

No Doubt & Green Day Return

Two different bands who came together as youngsters in the late 1980s, rose to massive fame to help define music in the 1990s, then continued with success in the 2000s are back with their first new albums of the 2010s. For Green Day, their new album ¡Uno! comes just three years after their last effort. Its a different story for No Doubt, who last released a studio album in 2001.

Push and Shove
Push and Shove - No Doubt. The band took a hiatus from 2004 to 2008, during which Gwen Stefani released two solo albums and all of the band members had some babies. Push and Shove began in 2010, but didn't really get going until 2011 and 2012. However, the wait was well worth it for fans of the band, and you can hear why they didn't want to rush out an album to the masses. The 80s pop and ska sounds are still here, but it doesn't sound dated as the band found a way to keep it fresh. They're still just Southern California rockers who want to make you dance no matter what mood you're in. Oh, and Gwen's abs still look insanely good. The album, plus their old ones,are all on sale for $5.99 on Amazon MP3 this week only.
Top Songs: "Settle Down", "Looking Hot", "Push and Shove", "Undercover".

¡Uno! - Green Day. Uno! is without a doubt a throwback album. After reaching a massive level of success with their politically charged rock opera American Idiot in 2004, they kept the theme going with 21st Century Breakdown in 2009. Its a solid album, but obviously was seen as the less successful sequel. ¡Uno! goes back to basics with quick hitting power-pop/punk songs that resemble their 90s work. They crafted so many songs that it will be followed by two more albums - ¡Dos! on November 13, 2012 and ¡Tre! on January 15, 2013. ¡Uno! and every other Green Day album are on sale for $5 this week only on Amazon MP3.
Top Songs: "Oh Love", "Carpe Diem", "Fell For You", "Rusty James".

Oh, and you can't mention the album without Billie Joe Armstrong's drunken tirade at the iHeartRadio festival, where he humorously proclaimed, "I'm not fucking Justin Bieber you motherfuckers!" He's since checked into rehab and will hopefully get better.

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

NFL Replacement Refs

The NFL ref drama been boiling for a while. The regular refs of the NFL are in a lockout, and the league doesn't want to up their salary even though they make billions of dollars. Players and fans have been calling for the NFL to settle it, and its about to get much louder after tonight's Monday Night Football game on ESPN between the Green Bay Packers and Seattle Seahawks.

A controversial end where two players came down with the ball was given to Golden Tate and the Seahawks, even though it seemed like it was an interception since Jennings of the Packers had the ball against his chest. However, before Jennings was down Tate had his hands on the ball, so does tie go to the receiver? To be honest I don't care, the Packers also scored because of some bad calls that went against the Seahawks, but that's the point. The game is being marred by awful calls on all sides.
Monday Night Football
Jennings holding the ball, Tate reaching in
Now its not like the regular refs have never made a bad call. Two or three years ago my Dolphins were robbed when a Steelers fumble at the end of the game was actually given to the Steelers who scored because of it, when it should have been Miami ball. Many people just said "Well the Dolphins should have scored more touchdowns and fewer field goals. If you leave the refs to decide the game than its your own fault." The same can be said for this Packers-Seahawks game even though there will be a bigger uproar since the NFL is using replacement refs. Another example being Super Bowl XL, which was heavily criticized for mistakes from the regular officials that could have cost the Seahawks that game.

So the funny thing is when the regular refs do return, people will end up complaining about some of their bad calls as well. But it's obvious they need to return, the replacements make far more terrible calls than normal. The NFL needs to stop being so greedy and put the best product they can out there. Even though the regular refs are flawed, they are still superior. When the XFL is trending on twitter, you're doing something wrong, NFL.

Friday, September 21, 2012

New Music - September 18, 2012

This past Tuesday began a pretty busy week for the music industry, with various albums being released from consistent hit makers. Its that time of year when artists want to get albums out ahead of the Holiday season, when sales for the struggling music business are strongest.

The Truth About Love
The Truth About Love - Pink (or P!nk). Pink was always more than just another pop singer. She dabbles in other territories, with most of her songs having a rock edge while still being pop songs that can make anyone want to get up and dance. "The Truth About Love" is her sixth studio album, and just like her previous albums is being well received by critics and fans. The album is heavy on the dance-rock tracks, featuring plenty of guitars and catchy choruses. Eminem guests on the song "Here Comes The Weekend." The album is on sale for $5 this week only on Amazon MP3, along with her previous studio albums (I'd recommend the underrated "Try This" from 2003, which features heavier rock thanks to Rancid singer/guitarist Tim Armstrong).
Top songs: "How Come You're Not Here", "Try", "Beam Me Up", "The Truth About Love".

Battle Born
Battle Born - The Killers. The Killers return after a brief hiatus with their fourth album "Battle Born." While not as strong as their first album "Hot Fuss", its still a solid effort overall and can easily become some fans' favorite. The sound most closely resembles "Day & Age" from 2008, filled with that shimmering and modernized new wave 80s sound. The album kicks off with some electronic beats, but quickly breaks out the guitars, a mix you will hear throughout. Brandon Flowers sounds as good as ever, which wasn't in doubt anyway.
Top songs: "Runaways", "Miss Atomic Bomb", "Battle Born", "Flesh & Bone".

The Spirit Indestructible
The Spirit Indestructible - Nelly Furtado. Considering the massive success of her 2006 album "Loose", this one is flying under the radar, and probably shouldn't be. The lead single "Big Hoops" is flawed and shouldn't have been the lead single, but the majority of the tracks are strong. What she managed to do well on this album is create songs that aren't your typical pop songs, and better than most of what you'll hear on Top 40 radio. Like her first two albums it contains variety, with songs featuring elements from all different genres-Pop, R&B, Rock, Hip Hop, Dance and a guest appearance from rapper Nas.
Top songs: "Parking Lot", "Miracles", "Circles", "Bucket List".

Monday, September 17, 2012

New Fall Shows 2012

As always with the fall, we see the return of football and premieres of brand new television shows. There are a bunch of interesting ones that you may want to keep an eye on this season. And as always, some will succeed and some will fail. I'm already expecting Animal Practice to fail...though people do love to see animals, so it could oddly work.

Revolution (NBC) - Revolution just premiered on NBC, and could become the next Lost, or possibly do for NBC what Heroes originally did before it went off track. NBC is looking for a new hit scripted show, especially with The Office & 30 Rock in their final seasons. I enjoyed it and thought the one hour premiere moved by very quickly. There is more action than I expected, which was fun to watch in prime time TV. I'm thinking the show might strive to be like The Walking Dead, with a good mix of action and character development. And just enjoy the show, don't wonder why people aren't harvesting solar or wind power. Maybe they'll answer that in a future episode.

The Mindy Project (FOX) - Mindy Kaling from The Office has scored her own sitcom, which will be airing with New Girl on FOX. Kaling wrote some of the most memorable episodes of The Office, so her own series is well deserved. Its generating some good buzz with critics, so I expect this to be a hit for FOX. Her character's basis is that she always wonders why her life isn't like the romantic comedies she loves so much.

The Neighbors (ABC) - This is the oddball of the season. Its about a family who moves to a new neighborhood in New Jersey, one in which everyone is an alien...from outer space. I think its interesting since there hasn't really been a good sitcom with this fantastical theme probably since 3rd Rock From the Sun. We'll see how this one does, airing in a block with hit Modern Family. Jami Gertz is the main star and could carry the show. She's been consistent since her career started 30 years ago, so she can pretty much handle any role.

666 Park Avenue (ABC) - ABC's latest Sunday Night series is about an upscale apartment building in New York City, which is possessed by some supernatural beings. When you sign your lease, you are signing your soul away. Sign me up for this one.

American Horror Story: Asylum (FX) - Okay, this isn't technically a new series, but the second season will be an entirely new arc, which was the plan from the beginning. Jessica Lange will be returning in a new role, playing an evil nun. Wouldn't have it any other way, Lange was the standout character from the first season. We'll see if they can top the previous season.

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Rolling Stones New Songs; 50th Anniversary

Fans have been speculating about what The Rolling Stones have been up to in preparation of celebrating their 50th Anniversary. First it was announced that they will be playing four live shows in November at the O2 Arena in London and at the new Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York, two at each venue. They also have a new documentary called "Crossfire Hurricane" spanning their 5 decades that will air November 15th on HBO. Directed by Brett Morgen, all four members (Mick Jagger, Keith Richards, Charlie Watts & Ronnie Wood) will be talking about their history in the film. Expect some background on their albums, and of course the normal "sex, drugs & rock 'n roll" stories.

ESPN has also licensed 16 Rolling Stones songs to be used on every NFL Monday Night Football telecast during the 2012 season, calling it "Legend to Legend." Expect some classic hits and some deeper tracks that may not be as well known when watching Monday Night Football this year.

It was also announced today that the band will be releasing two new songs recorded in Paris, their first since the last studio album "A Bigger Bang" came out in 2005. The two new tracks, "Gloom and Doom" & "One Last Shot", will be included on a new career spanning 50-song greatest hits album titled "GRRR!" This will take the place of 2002's "Forty Licks", which has been out of print since switching music labels. Fans probably wanted a full new album, but i'm sure any new songs will be well received. For those who already have most of their music and don't need a greatest hits album, you can download just "Gloom & Doom" and "One Last Shot" on Amazon or iTunes.

There will also be an 80-track super deluxe edition with all sorts of goodies for fans including a poster and bonus CD.  A vinyl box set for the die hard fans will be out as well. "GRRR!" will be released on November 13th, 2012 to coincide with the HBO documentary "Crossfire Hurricane" and the four live shows. Quite the autumn for Rolling Stones fans. The creative album cover for "GRRR!" was designed by Walton Ford.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

NBC's 'The Office' is Shutting Down

NBC sitcom 'The Office' is getting ready for its upcoming 9th season, which has been confirmed to be the final one. Angela Kinsey took to her twitter to address the rumors and confirmed them, saying, "It is true. This is our last season. We hope to give a real end to these characters we love to play. Thx for watching." Producer Greg Daniels, who is back for the final season after doing seasons 1-5, also confirmed it. He stated, “This will be the last season of The Office. And we’re planning a very big exciting last season. We’re going to have a lot of faces coming back. There are a lot of things that I’ve personally been wanting to do since season two. All questions will be answered this year. We’re going to see who’s behind the documentary. Now that we know we have an end date we can blow things up and take some chances and it will be very freeing, creatively.

There is no confirmation that Steve Carell will return as Michael Scott, but one can assume he will be back for the final few episodes of the series that he led from 2005 to 2011, continuing on with it years after he became a box office draw. What better way to end the show than have Michael & Holly get married and return to Scranton? Mindy Kaling will return as Kelly Kapoor for a few episodes even though she has her own sitcom, 'The Mindy Project', debuting on FOX.

Word is John Krasinski and Jenna Fischer (Jim & Pam) will be getting some kind of big storyline for the final season. We'll have to wait and see what it is, just don't break them up! Read more from Greg Daniels about the final season of 'The Office' over on Entertainment Weekly. It may be sad to say goodbye to the characters of Dunder Mifflin, but at least everyone can prepare for the show to go out in the best way possible. Many questions will be answered, including who the "Scranton Strangler" actually is! The season premieres on September 20.

Monday, August 20, 2012

McKayla Is Not Impressed: Jurassic Park

McKayla Maroney is not impressed is still fun, and a good segue to talk about something random. I also just wanted an excuse to make another one, like the Kerri Strug/Bela Karolyi one from last week. Here, she is not impressed with dinosaurs or Jurassic Park.

Speaking of Jurassic Park, the date is set for the 20th Anniversary 3D re-release of the original film: April 5, 2013. I'm not much for 3D re-releases, but seeing big dinosaurs coming at you in 3D might just be worth it. Even though Jurassic Park came out in 1993, those dinosaur effects look better than the special effects in many movies that come out now. They used a combination of CGI and animatronics, which adds to the realism. Thankfully they apparently will be using animatronics for the fourth film as well.

Speaking of Jurassic Park 4 (Jurassic Park IV?), the writers for the successful Rise of the Planet of the Apes, Rick Jaffa & Amanda Silver, are writing it. No word on when filming starts or who will be in it from previous films, but producer Frank Marshall has said Summer 2014 could be the aim for them. Of course that date can change. Fear not, even though Steven Spielberg won't be directing, he will be involved with it. Laura Dern, star of HBO's Enlightened, has been rumored to reprise her role from the first & third films as Dr. Sattler.

Honey Boo Boo Child Parody

"Here Comes Honey Boo Boo" is the latest trashy reality TV show to take the airwaves by storm on TLC. If you're a fan of the show or if you absolutely hate the show, you should enjoy the above parody of 6-year-old Honey Boo Boo and her mom, which takes place 25 years in the future. I actually think this is a pretty good representation of what will happen to them.

By the way, Honey Boo Boo is going to be an aunt to her teen sister's baby. She's six and will be an aunt. Let that sink in a moment. Apparently they don't know how to use condoms. Hopefully they keep the "Go Go Juice" away from the baby.

The above picture of Honey Boo Boo and her mom June is going to be the star attraction at my Halloween haunted house this year. By the way, June (aka Coupon Queen) was arrested in 2008 for stealing child support payments. You can see her mugshot below, yet another candidate for best haunted house attraction this year.

Monday, August 13, 2012

London 2012 Olympics Closing Ceremony

Freddie Mercury
All good things must come to an end, and once again the Olympics have come and gone too quickly, with London 2012 ending with a bang, with one of the best Closing Ceremonies ever. Featuring performances from the likes of The Who, Spice Girls, George Michael, Muse, Anne Lennox as well as the members of Queen with Jessie J on vocals. They were introduced by the late, great Freddie Mercury on big video screens. It was old footage of him (from Live Aid 1985) interacting with a crowd, and the crowd in the London Olympic Stadium interacted back with him in a fantastic moment. This was the highlight along with the next one.

Another amazing moment came when a bunch of children came out to perform John Lennon's legendary song "Imagine". Then old footage of John Lennon came on the screens to sing the song, and it sent everyone into a frenzy (myself included). The children performed the song in sign language. The video was remastered from the archives of Yoko Ono especially for the Olympics. Much better than a hologram! Thank you Yoko for helping to bring John into the closing ceremony, where people from hundreds of countries were together singing and dancing, all "living life in peace." A sculpture of John's face was also created on the floor.

There were also tributes to David Bowie, Pink Floyd and The Beatles of course. The Spice Girls had a fairly good entrance, each coming out on a British style Taxi which then drove around the stadium floor with them standing on top. Russell Brand performed The Beatles' classic "I Am The Walrus" in a very psychedelic setting. Though Jessie J got so much screen time (too much) that I was half expecting her to come out and sing the "Olympic Hymn." Annie Lennox was dressed like some giant bird on a pirate ship which was odd, but interesting. Also got to see a great Monty Python performance. Some NBC viewers are mad that they cut out the band Muse and waited until midnight to show The Who after airing a new sitcom in between. Should have watched a BBC stream.

I loved the closing ceremony, and London knows how to stage on Olympics like no one else. This was their record third time hosting (1908, 1948 & 2012). Next its on to Sochi, Russia for the Sochi 2014 Winter Olympics.
Spice Girls Reunite

Saturday, August 11, 2012

McKayla Maroney is Not Impressed, Kerri Strug

Gymnastics vault on an injured Leg? McKayla Maroney is not impressed.  (Click for larger)
Kerri Strug, Bela Karoyli, Atlanta 1996

I was surprised I hadn't yet seen the McKayla Maroney meme used with Kerri Strug and/or Bela Karolyi from the Atlanta 1996 Olympics, so I had to make one for our enjoyment. I'm sure there is one out there I haven't seen, but this is the best one of course. ;) And if you're one of the few who haven't heard of the McKayla Maroney meme yet, check this out for some laughs.

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Olympic Women's Soccer: USA vs Japan

The United States is golden again after defeating the world cup champions Japan 2-1 in front of 80,203 fans at Wembley Stadium to finish the Women's Soccer/Football tournament at the London 2012 Olympics. Japan defeated the US in the 2011 FIFA Women's World Cup final in Germany, and this re-match more than lived up to the hype. Both teams were outstanding from start to finish. Carli Lloyd scored both goals for the USA, and Japan cut the lead to 2-1 in the 2nd half, but couldn't find a 2nd goal to tie. Hope Solo came up with some big saves to hold the US lead.

Even though Alex Morgan and Abby Wambach missed some chances, they didn't need it in the end with Lloyd stepping up for the United States. There was a Tobin Heath hand ball early in the game that should have been a Penalty Kick for Japan. However, referees missing these calls are nothing new, you have to keep playing and try to get another goal back. In attendance were members of the US Men's Basketball "Dream Team" and soccer icon Mia Hamm. Japan, nicknamed Nadeshiko, were upset at first but danced their way onto the podium, happy to win the silver medal a year after winning the World Cup. You can't help but like their great spirit that goes along with the talent.

A funny moment happened during the medals ceremony, as the fans at Wembley Stadium let the boos rain down on FIFA president Sepp Blatter. Earlier in the day, Canada defeated France 1-0 with a late goal to win the Bronze medal. I also wondered why they didn't move the game to NBC instead of NBC Sports Network. Maybe they're trying to build awareness of the NBC Sports Network, but still. There will be homecoming friendly matches on NBC in September.
Carli Lloyd shoots her second goal

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Misty May & Kerri Walsh Make History

Misty May and Kerri Walsh finished their Olympic gold medal three-peat by winning gold in Athens 2004, Beijing 2008 and now London 2012, remaining undefeated (21-0) in all three Olympics. And they only dropped one set during their reign as well, easily the best and most popular Beach Volleyball team of all time. The match was Misty May's final one, confirming she will retire from the sport. Kerri Walsh is going to continue on with a new partner and attempt to qualify for Rio 2016. Odds are she will, and it will be interesting to see who she chooses and how they play together on the big stage.

In some other Olympic news, track star Allyson Felix won her first individual gold medal in her third Olympics and as expected, Usain Bolt continued his Olympic dominance on the track. The US Men's Indoor Volleyball & Water Polo teams were both eliminated, leaving it up to the women to get medals.

And as a reminder of the biggest event tomorrow, USA takes on Japan for the Gold Medal in Women's Soccer at Wembley Stadium. As of Tuesday 83,000 tickets had been sold, which will make it the most attended Olympic women's soccer match beating the 76,489 from Atlanta 1996 as well as the most attended soccer match at London 2012. It will probably fall short of the women's soccer record 90,185 that attended the Rose Bowl in California for the 1999 FIFA Women's World Cup final that the US famously won on penalty kicks over China. Live coverage of the game starts around 2pm ET on NBC Sports Network in the US, don't miss it!

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

USA-Canada Women's Soccer Controversy

About this "controversy" during the outstanding USA-Canada soccer match in the Olympics - Get over it is what I have to say. The USA won the game 4-3 fair and square. Yes there were "controversial calls." But there was a moment in the 54th minute when Canada's Melissa Tancredi stomped on Carli Lloyd's head inside the box, which could/should have been a Red Card. American fans are not complaining. There wasn't some fix before the game. For the Canadian players to say "the ref should have worn a US jersey" is crazy. They should be thankful Tancredi wasn't sent out of the game where they would have had to play down a player.

And before the game, Canada coach John Herdman said the "US uses highly illegal tactics in the box." So he got what he wanted, the ref went by the rule book with the 6 second rule against the Goalkeeper, it just didn't work out in Canada's favor. Be careful what you wish for! Not only that, but Great Britain got robbed of a penalty kick against this same Canadian team. So why don't they bring attention to that? Maybe because they won the game and beat GB? During the first half there were about 5-7 times Erin McLeod, Canada's Goalkepper, held the ball for around 15 seconds to try and slow the game down. The ref warned her at the half she would enforce this rule, so it should not have been a surprise. Though personally I think it was a bad call, it was just one call. Bad calls happen in sports, it sucks but you have to forget it and keep going.

Here you can see Tancredi's step on Lloyd
So stop with the conspiracy theories and complaining, and focus on trying to beat France for the Bronze medal. Christine Sinclair is one of the best players in the world and she should be able to rally the team for a win over France. Canada has a lot of talent and will join the US as a Women's World Cup contender in 2015. It won't take away from Alex Morgan's phenomenal header in the 123rd minute, the latest goal in history.

Monday, August 6, 2012

London 2012: Women's Soccer Steals The Show

Oh what a day for women's soccer at the London 2012 Olympics. It started off with Japan taking on France in front of over 61,000 people at Wembley Stadium. The first half was a bit slow, but the game picked up in the second half. Japan took a 2-0 lead and controlled the ball. Then France unleashes a storm of shots, getting one back. They missed a penalty kick but kept on attacking Japan's goal. Japan sealed the win 2-1, and after the game consoled the upset French players in true Olympic spirit.

Then one of the most epic sports matches ever took place in Old Trafford between CONCACAF rivals the United States and Canada. Christine Sinclair of Canada put on a clinic, scoring three goals to give the lead to Canada three times during the game. But the USA would not go away. Megan Rapinoe scored two and the 3rd was scored on a controversial penalty kick by Abby Wambach. The back and forth battle fittingly went to Overtime as Twitter exploded with more and more people joining the action. The game was still tied 3-3 as 120 minutes went on, now into added time. In the final seconds, the USA sent in a cross and Alex Morgan headed the ball in to give the US the 4-3 win. Basketball coach Doc Rivers called it the best game he's witnessed at the Olympics in any sport. Another side-story was Abby Wambach and Christine Sinclair both chasing legendary Mia Hamm's record of 158 international goals.

USA will move on to Wembley Stadium to take on world champions Japan in a re-match of last summers outstanding FIFA Women's World Cup final, which Japan won in a penalty kick shootout. The match will air Thursday at 2:45 ET on the NBC Sports Network here in the states. Canada will take on France for the Bronze Medal at 8AM ET. Canada no doubt won many fans during the match, and they may not have beaten the US since 2001 but I can guarantee they will very soon.

The Canadian women's team has elevated soccer in Canada ahead of the 2015 FIFA Women's World Cup, which has been expanded to 24 teams. Plenty of Americans will be making the trip to our friendly neighbor to the north for that tournament and the atmosphere could rival the 1999 Women's World Cup in the USA. Until then, it's the Olympics.

New Aaliyah Song Released

There have been rumors of a new posthumous Aaliyah album, produced by Drake, for a while now. It looks as if this will come true, as one new song called "Enough Said" has been released, which features Drake on the track itself. It's a good song and Aaliyah's vocals sound smooth as expected. I hope if a full album is released that it features songs with just her on vocals, rather than guest musicians on each song. Apparently there is a solo version of "Enough Said" which will hopefully be released.

The last new Aaliyah song to be released was "Come Over" in 2003. The singer tragically died in a plane crash on August 25, 2001 at the age of 22. She has remained popular since this time. She easily would have been a big star, as she was set to appear in the sequels to The Matrix. The role had to be recast since they did not finish filming her scenes. She also wanted to work with Trent Reznor of Nine Inch Nails on an album to give herself a different sound and no doubt show her versatility through pop, soul, R&B and rock. Maybe they will take one of her demo songs and turn it into an industrial rock song to attempt to get us a glimpse of where she may have gone next with her music?

Sunday, August 5, 2012

London 2012: Olympic Soccer Semifinals Set

The semifinals of the London 2012 Olympics Soccer (Football) Tournament is set. First on the women's side, United States defeated New Zealand 2-0, Japan beat Brazil 2-0, France topped Sweden 2-1 and the hosts Great Britain fell to Canada 2-0. In the USA-New Zealand match there was a nasty collision between Alex Morgan's knee and Jenny Binden's head. Luckily both are fine, and Morgan should start in the semifinal between USA and Canada, 2:45 ET on NBC Sports Network Monday. Canada hasn't beaten the United States since 2001, but you have to imagine the Canadians are closing in on a victory. All streaks must come to an end. I don't think they will get it tomorrow, but you never know. Abby Wambach has been on a roll scoring in every game, while Hope Solo and the US defense hasn't allowed a goal since the first half against France in game one.

Canada is hosting the 2015 FIFA Women's World Cup, so this final four finish is already a big success ahead of that. They've shown that they will be contenders to win it all on home soil. The other semifinal is Japan vs. France. The defending World Cup champions should have a tougher challenge from France than they did against an aging Brazil. If Japan controls possession like they should, I expect them to win and set up a Women's World Cup final rematch with the USA. 2011 FIFA women's world player of the year, Homare Sawa, has yet to score for Japan.

On the men's side its Japan vs. Mexico and Brazil vs. South Korea. Brazil are the clear favorites for their first Olympic gold, but South Korea could give them fits. Japan dominated Egypt, though Mexico will be a tougher test for them. I expect Japan to beat Mexico and take the silver, with South Korea taking bronze.