POP your heart out.

Well, according a trusted punk rocker source, political pop punkers Anti-Flag has officially sold out with their new CD. In fact, it's like, emo (although I'm sure she meant femo). So, aside from listening to old Anti-Flag, which, if you're into the really poppy pop punk is not a very good idea, what else should you do?

Not to fear, Justin Sane is here. The lead singer/guitarist of Anti-Flag has a little side solo project going on, and actually, it's been going on a while. Of course, 80% of all Anti-Flag fans has never heard his music and probably don't plan to, but just because he's unknown doesn't mean he lacks merit. His solo work is even catchier than new Anti-Flag songs, and he dares to step away from political songs and touch upon life, friendship, love...uh oh, I hear you say, that must mean he's writing emo (although I'm sure you meant femo). Even his website looks rather emo..."keep fighting the good fight", all lowercase? Come on. My trusted punk rocker friend sure think so...but I beg to differ. In fact, with the flowing electric guitar in the background and his clear cut vocals and lyrics still unable to abandon the dreaded "f" word (aka happy fun), I say he's a lot closer to pop punk. Quality pop punk. Perhaps even funner than Anti-Flag.

Oh, Justin Sane is missing a lot of course. For example, it'd be nice for some drums, bass, and maybe even some back up vocals, but when this guy says solo, he really means solo. Especially since he's on Anti-Flag's very own record label, AF Records, he can pretty much record his songs with sololy his guitar to accompany him. But sometimes the simplicity showcases the music even better than random noise and effects (are you reading this, Xiu Xiu?), especially with Justin's unique voice, ever so pleasant and pop punky.

It's too bad Justin doesn't appear to persuing his solo project farther. He's only released a single CD, Life, Love, & The Pursuit of Justice and a demo EP. However, for some pop punk without all the fuss and for all the Anti-Flag lovers, this might be the perfect companion to your otherwise "sold-out" band.

For Pat-Justin Sane
Worst Case Scanario Survival Handbook-Justin Sane
The Protest Song-Anti-Flag

I love clever bands who come up with marketing ideas that involves offering their album available to download for free. Especially if their music is actually worth listening to and might gain a new fan or two.

Self described as "fast technical melodic skate punk," PMX is yet another British band...without a typical British band sound. Their crunchy electronica-y punk is super fun to listen to, and the fact that this is their debute album and they've been around for quite a few years make it even better. You won't have to worry about amatuer kids who have no clue about song structure, lyrics, variety, ect. ect. And you know if a band sounds like this, their live performances ought to be great. Download their album now and buy it later, and why not drop by a show as well...if they ever visit the U.S., that is.

Download: PMX-Rise and Shine

We interrupt the music to bring you an update on horror animation--interative features. This particular one features an all time classic creep out--a doll. Dolls seem to belong in that catagory with clowns. There is something disturbing about them, even without watching movies like Chucky or reading stories like "Gina's Doll," written by yours truly about a doll's control of an innocent girl's mind to murder her father and stepmother. However, if you've never felt uncomfortable about dolls before, now is a good time as any to start. Check out this installation from Australian artist Van Sowerwine, which can only be described as unsettling...a lot, and rather terrible. I felt nervous playing with it, and that was without sound.

Here's a little blurb to perpare you:

Maybe you were one of the first people to get that Internet "ghost" that was passed around several years ago. Or maybe you got that bootleg copy of The Blair Witch Project or Ringu months before everyone else knew what hit them. If you weren't, check out this installation piece by Australian artist/animator Van Sowerwine, which is absolutely the creepiest thing we've seen in ages

Go ahead—click on one of the objects glowing in the room of that round-eyed little girl. Then keep clicking. Will you stop once you realize that every click you make leads inexorably to something awful? Or will you circle back to try the objects you didn't choose or the paths you didn't explore, you little sicko? You have the power—and that's the object of this unnerving little exercise in active voyeurism.

Our suggestion: save the writing tablet for last.

I suggest you save the writing tablet as well, and if you don't feel too bad, try and check out all the choices, some objects have more than one result.

Click here to "Play With Me"

Realize that it is the second to last week of school before summer and my concentration has blew up and disappeared. I apologize...but I plan to refresh the blog for summer anyways, perhaps a little redecorating around the block, a little clean up, definitely regular posting, more bits and pieces of fun things...

For now, here is a much delayed post on a band that should have been posted about much earlier...? Now usually the origin of a band doesn't really matter to me (unless it's San Diego), but there's this thing with Brit bands...whether it's Brit pop via Blur and The Verse or New Wavers or punk rockers, there's something about them that somehow all sounds the same, not neccessarily great or terrible but similar, and something about them that stands out. I don't know how they do it...but here's one Brit band following the path of Coldplay and U2. Although I have to admit that Coldplay and U2 are not exactly up my alley, and I don't even feel slightly excited about Coldplay's new CD (X&Y out in stores now, ect ect.), something about Majorie Fair seems slightly different. Could there actually be a hint of pop goodness along its roaring choruses? Might the background stringy, high guitar sounds actually be worth listening to? I can't answer for you, but for myself, I'll just listen to "Waves" one more time, and ponder away...
Download: Majorie Fair-Waves

Now you know there's a lot of great new music out right now, just this past few weeks during which time I couldn't find time to update. Gorillaz, Stephen Malkmus, Sleater-Kinney, White Stripes (although I don't find myself enjoying their music very much, I realize they have many excited fans), not to mention the number of hot feature releases. I'm so excited about the new Foo Fighters, after stealing a listen from my local radio stations as well as (cough)the Internet, I can't wait to grab a copy of the CD for myself. It is of course, out next Tuesday, although I could never figure out what the point of releasing every CD on a Tuesday...

Among some of the new music out, I've already posted about perhaps many of them, but one thing I've nearly forgotten about was the new Belle & Sebastian. Their latest isn't so much a new release as a compilation...but who brought all those EPs, right? The double disk album contain some heartwarming and depressing pop ballads, and it is great. Listen to the indie pop wonderfulness of this song and hurry to the record shop to pick up the disk...s...if you haven't already.
Download:Belle & Sebastian-Take Your Carriage Clock and Shove It (them indie titles, huh?)


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