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Reviews

February 28, 2007;/h3>

{     Meet Mr. Product: The Art of the Advertising Character     }    

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I love books and I love this book, it's just so nicely put together and packaged. Meet Mr. Product: The Art of the Advertising Character by Warren Dotz and Masud Husain is basically a compendium of characters that have been used to peddle the wares that they represent. It includes characters/designs all the way from the early part of the 20th century to more recent times. The qualities that make this book stand out are the layout, design and stunning high quality images in color. It's 272 pages long and not a lot of words of course, but enough to establish a basic understanding of the characters that are showcased in this little gem of a book. The paper it's printed on is more like card stock than your run-of-the-mill paper and is definitely able to withstand the constant flipping around that you will be doing.

     » Buy it...

Reviews

February 27, 2007;/h3>

{     Imaginary Foundation     }    

I consider myself to be a clothes whore. Seriously, that is probably the most articulate and appropriate way to describe my passion for fashion, and one of the most adored and adorned articles of clothing one can own are t-shirts. I have a ton of and all are special to me because of what they represent, how they feel, and how much they made me think they were definitely for 'me.' That said, let me introduce you to Imaginary Foundation. At Imaginary Foundation their goal is to produce quality artwork not just for your walls but for your body as well. Their slogan says it all: express yourself.

If you’ve ever wanted to live out your philosophy in a high quality, cotton format that can be broadcast on your chest then I’d suggest you go check them out. The prices are a little up there with t-shirts ranging to $30 a pop, but I’d be willing to say that if you’re desperate to add a touch of artistic, philosophic flavor to your wardrobe then you should pick up a shirt or two.


     » Check out ImaginaryFoundation.com

Singles

{     Portishead Debut New Song     }    

portishead.gif This is news worthy of reposting here at the Dozen (via Pitchfork): Portishead Debut New Song at Secret Live Gig!.

Pretty much the short of it is: Geoff Barrow DJ'd a night at some joint in Bristol, and while spinning he and fellow P-head Adrian Utley start playing 'Wandering Star.' A little into it they ask the crowd if anyone knows how to sing, at which point Beth (fucking) Gibbons joins the two onstage and they play a full set, debuting a new, as-yet-untitled song. This is where I insert a whole, whole lot of exclamation marks.

The rumor mill says they have a new album coming soon, but that's been the whisper for a while. It's been over ten years since the last, so if you're anything like me, even just the news of a new song is HUGE. Let us pray.


     » Flickr photos of the show!

Reviews

February 25, 2007;/h3>

{     The London Police Toy Set     }    

london_police_toy.jpg
For those of you who have not been introduced, The London Police is a street art crew based out of Amsterdam. They have been picking up steam among the street art community since the turn of the century. Gaining even more notoriety through the Pictoplasma publications and various other art books and magazines.

If you attended last years "Wooster on Spring" (the Woodstock of street art) then you may have seen the "gi-normous" lad displaying the number 11, marking the address. Not to mention, The London Police are regularly splashing their trademark bold line-work lads on nearly every continent on the globe with the occasional gallery appearance.

With all this in mind, I think a toy from these guys is long over due. In a saturated world of toy product, this is one that should not get away. The 2d to 3d conversion that has proved difficult on some toys in the past worked out well with the lads. Box set comes complete with a 10.5" lad, a 6" dog and an extra lad head to swap out depending on the mood. In a limited edition of 1000 with a small number signed on random boxes, these will not be around forever. Here is a spot to pick one up.


     » Buy TLP Toy Set

Singles

February 23, 2007;/h3>

{     Witch Hats The 'Wound Of A Little Horse' EP     }    


This band is rockin' a bratty, ratty post-Arctic Monkees/Pixies/Fall vibe with a splash of Australian society's rage and despair over Steve Irwin's untimely demise thrown in for that indieronic 'it factor' splash.

Unlike Irwinicide references in '07 this music is guaranteed fresh for the next 14 days.


     » Witch Hats
     » Myspace
     » Download Witch Hats "Ma Birthday" (right-click, save as...)

By Aaron in Singles
Reviews

February 22, 2007;/h3>

{     Mika - Life In Cartoon Motion     }    

albumcoversibsmallcopyzz6.gif

In a world in the aftermath of the terror of such pop phenomenon as boy bands and flavor of the month pop divas there arose a new breed of musician in the likeness of the genre “Powerpop.” Of these bands to join the army of cynical pop musicians who create music to tap your toes to while scratching your head in thought, there arose Mika.

When I first got my hands on Life In Cartoon Motion my immediate reaction was: when did Robbie Williams clone himself? After listening to more of the album I was soon captivated by the hypnotic refrains and melodies that will have you humming in no time. Mika, a Lebanese born raised in Paris and London, must have picked up many influences as he describes himself on his MySpace page as, “Think Beck via Queen and Elton John and a touch of Rufus W. Would love to blab about Harry Nillson but I fear no one will know what I'm talking about... but if you do, you'll know what I mean.”

Life In Cartoon Motion is the album I would offer to a gloomy passer by to bring a little light into their day. Stand out singles are “Grace Kelly,” “Lollipop,” “Big Girl (You Are Beautiful),” and my favorite “Any Other World.” Released in the U.K., Mika’s first album Life In Cartoon Motion will find it’s way to the U.S. on March 27th.

     » Buy it...

Reviews

{     AIR - Pocket Symphony     }    

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A masterful body of work, AIR has risen to the occasion in it’s latest album, Pocket Symphony. The duo of Dunckel and Godin have proven their talents as they bid us to follow in the world of the electronic and vocal hybrid. Pocket Symphony, the long awaited sequel to “Talkie Walkie” (2004) is filled to the brim with classics, especially the stand out track “Somewhere Between Waking and Sleeping.”

This, the duos fourth album is graced by the vocal talents of Jarvis Cocker and Neil Hannon who bring added life to the singular ambiance that only AIR has found an untapped potential to the musical genre.

Look for AIR’s Pocket Symphony to hit shelves March 6th, 2007.

     » Buy it...

By A.J. in Music, Reviews
Reviews

February 21, 2007;/h3>

{     Jarvis Cocker - Jarvis     }    

Jarvis%20cocker_jarvis.jpg

A long time ago in an alternative based universe far, far away there was a band called Pulp. One of the geniuses behind this monumental band was named Jarvis Cocker. Shortly after Pulp’s departure from the alt scene, he decided it was time to be heard again and here he is with his new album, Jarvis. To spend the rest of this review comparing Jarvis’ new work with that of Pulp would do a great disservice to a brilliant musician.

Jarvis Cocker’s new album is full of alt-pop ballads that are sure to keep your neck bouncing to it’s great guitar riffs and rhythms. The best example of such a mesmerizing ballad is the brilliant single, “Don’t Let Him Waste Your Time.” But don’t let the single’s success fool you into thinking this is just another shot from the hip, one hit wonder album. It’s loaded with spirited ballads that will truly make you feel your money was well spent. Look for another great single, “Running the World,” on the underground hit film The Children of Men’s soundtrack.

If there is justice in the world, we’ll hear more from Jarvis Cocker in the future, with or without his “Pulp”-y essence.

Buy it here at Amazon.com : Jarvis Cocker - Jarvis

     » Buy it...

By A.J. in Music, Reviews
Interviews

February 17, 2007;/h3>

{     Interview : Jeremy Fish     }    

Late last year I touched base with Jeremy Fish to do an interview while he was in Philly for the "Little Creatures" show. I get to the Lineage Gallery and Josh, the owner says, "the dude is upstairs." I climb to the second floor loft and say, "what's up Mr. Fish? How's it going?" He responds, "not so good." After a brief conversation with him I find out that the issue was hanging the nine decks he made, which were seemingly unmountable due to a wall that Ben Franklin built. Relocation was looking like the only option. Clearly, Jeremy was about to flip out. I tell Jeremy that I know a little something about concrete walls and could help. He looks at me skeptical through the corner of his eye and says, "yeah, I really am about to flip out and I can't do anything until I get this done." After a minute of small talk Jeremy gets up and is muttering, "this drill bit sucks. I need a new bit." I ask Josh, "do you have a hardware store around?" He points me two blocks away and hands me 20 bucks and says, "get what you need." I race to the hardware store to buy concrete anchors and hammer drill bits. Less than 10 minutes later Jeremy and I are hammer drilling the shit out of this plaster/concrete/brick wall. After 30 minutes of serious labor we are all high fiving each other and talking about how the decks will never pull out. From there Jeremy and I go bullshit in the loft and put some shit on tape. At the end of the evening I was rewarded for my last minute labor, paid in full with vinyl toys. On that note, take a few minutes to read all the things you might not know about Jeremy Fish.


     » SillyPinkBunnies
     » LineageGallery

Reviews

{     Quiltsrÿche     }    

Have you lived a debacherous and sinful life? You've resided yourself to the fact that you're going to hell but only plan on doing so in a designer handbasket. Why not let Boo Davis ease your transition by cuddling up under one of her metal-themed quilts, such as Skullfucked (pictured here). She can even custom make you a quilt out of your old Iron Maiden, Eddy t-shirts. Toasty, evil, and absolutely beautiful. The nostrils full of burning flesh will seam like a cakewalk after you've spent the remainder of years sleeping comfortably under your own personal hand crafted bundle of hell on earth.


     » quiltsryche.com
     » Quiltsrÿche on MySpace

Reviews

February 15, 2007;/h3>

{     Three Very Small Comics     }    


I have already praised the awesome Tom Gould for his Robots, Monsters, etc. (here). Now it is time for more praise for his lovely Three Very Small Comics series, the latest of which is still fresh of print.

Published once again by Cabanon Press (the publishing house Tom uses to distribute his comic marvels), Three Very Small Comics is a tiny publication: in format, it is smaller than your hand. But the small barrels contain the best wine they say... and from this one, expect to get a buzz as well as a great taste!
Everything is crafted with that extra attention to details typical of Tom's productions: great care is given to each element. Inside the hand stuffed brown envelope, there are three small comics, different one from the the for subject, format and materials. And absolutely lovely.

One of the comics is usually a poster, in Three Small Comics III printed on yellow paper; another a small booklet and the third can vary: on the issue of Three Very Small Comics released just a few weeks ago, it is a long foldable strip.


     » Three Very Small Comics volume III
     » Cabanon Pres

Reviews

February 14, 2007;/h3>

{     Triko     }    

After designing for some of today’s biggest streetwear labels, owner and designer Hector Estrada decided it was time to venture out alone and create something new, and as he puts it

“I designed a brand for the fashion conscious customer interested in alternative and independent culture,

That independent lifestyle comes by the name of Triko, and has certainly made an impact…in more ways than one.. In today’s fast paced fashion industry it is refreshing to come across a clothing line that is doing more than just creating timeless pieces of cloth, but that are also trying to make a difference…All of their garments are made from organic grown cotton, and heck even some of the buttons are made from coconut shells as Triko does their best to move in sync with the environment.


     » New Triko Line is up!

Singles

February 9, 2007;/h3>

{     Suburban Kids with Biblical Names     }    


I have said it many a time. So I will just go ahead and repeat once more, SWEDEN IS SAVING MUSIC.

It seems the only indie-ish music I can tolerate these days is from Sweden, and we won't even get into the many electronic gifts Sweden has given us recently.

Suburban Kids with Biblical Names immediately brings to mind the Tough Alliance and the lead singer's voice reminded me immediately of the Magnetic Fields' frontman, Stephin Merritt. I adore how they seem to sing super close to the mic. They are young and unpolished, but they own a 4-trak, a mic and damn I can't stop singing along to Loop Duplicate My Heart.

Reviews

February 7, 2007;/h3>

{     Craola Show at Fifty24SF     }    

Craola11.jpgThere has been some rumors going around about the actual turn of events that went down at Fifty24SF gallery in San Francisco this past week. Yes, a car did smash thru the front end of the gallery. Yes there were some serious injuries. Yes the dude who was arrested did escape from the hospital and is still on the run... these are the facts. But what is unclear is what was the motive. Was it that he was still hoped up on coke and booze from the night before. Was it truly an assassination attempt on the local flyer guy. This all still remains a mystery.


     » ImScared
     » Fifty24SF

Reviews

February 6, 2007;/h3>

{     Traditiona     }    

I first heard of this label from my buds in Secret Lives of the Freemasons (shameless plug, but they do rock) and found it to be a very well run company for its size, but just lacked that ‘wow’ factor. That was until a few of their latest shirts came in my mailbox, and well…I am defiantly eating my words! Traditiona is still a baby in the fashion community but they are doing a solid job of gaining exposure and really throwing some punches in the process.


     » Buy here

Reviews

February 5, 2007;/h3>

{     Robots, Monsters, etc.     }    


This little book full of delights is a collection of 16 postcard populated with Robots, Monsters, etcetera etcetera... (=ghosts, dinosaurs, astronauts, etcetera, etcetera...) and illustrated by comics creator Tom Gould.


Usually I am generous with words, but this little gem is nothing but brilliant and comments itself a lot better than anything I could write. So have a look at a selection of Tom's work and be ready to read more about his latest release soon.

(continue below)


     » Available via Tom's own Cabanon Press shop
     » More ab out Robots, Monsters, etc.

Reviews

February 3, 2007;/h3>

{     Frengo     }    

Yes, yes, ok, since Friends With You/Ugly Dolls (not familiar with these words? read the interviews...) this is "techincally" not a new idea, nor there is significant innovation in the material or the concept. Nevertheless this new line of plushies is lovely and to me sits right in the middle between a real kid toy and its urban equivalent.

I am talking about Frengo, a very recent plush series completely handmade by a young creative mind located in Italy and sold via word of mouth/email only to certified foster parents. I was lucky enough to receive a Frengo doll this Christmas (courtesy of my sister, who for once had a grand idea: no clue I could be a vouched for foster parent though!) and it even came with a Doctor Jump tee for extra kicks.

The one that came out of the package was a Franky Frengo doll, the leader of this pack of wide eyed and mouthed creatures: it is super cute and cuddly and for once sure to cacht the interest of a girl. The tee, also totally handmade, is as lovely with its tragically oversized design: note that the image of this skateboarding doc is not printed, actual pieces of different fabrics are stiched on the tee to create a huge flat doll.


     » Frengo


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