Jesse Eisenberg’s Straightened Hair

This post is devoted to Jesse Eisenberg‘s newly straightened hair — which apparently is for a movie role, which Jesse says he has to “look Catholic.”

This hair change is probably the most traumatic coiffure shocker since Jesse’s Zombieland co-star Emma Stone went from her trademark fiery red to a golden blonde for her role in the new Spider-Man movie (coincidentally starring The Social Network‘s Andrew Garfield).

Even though the slick new style is a bit of a shocker from Jesse’s naturally curly hairdo, I kinda like this new look.
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Ariel Pink Brought the Crazy to the Rock ‘n’ Roll Circus — But Was No Match for PONIES!

Briefly — I went to the Rock ‘n’ Roll Circus tonight at Lincoln Center. All around the event was a bit uneven in it’s organization and planning, but there were some highlights. For about 25 some odd minutes, last minute headliner Ariel Pink totally confused/captivated the audience with his bizarre performance which was swiftly ended 30 minutes early when he simply walked to one of the tent exits and just kept going

With a pre-recorded music track, Ariel treated the crowd with what came across as part performance art part Ariel Pink doing Ariel Pink karaoke covers. Dressed like a one man drunken Where’s Waldo? pajama party, Ariel was a sight to be seen, slowly circling the ring with a lackadaisical walk, seemingly with no intended direction or purpose, other than to keep him from falling asleep during his own show. The act was basically exactly how I imagine it would be like if you caught Ryan Adams, during his drug-fueled days of the early 2000s, while sleepwalking and talking after a nights worth of Halloween shenanigans.

During one point of the performance Ariel decided the only way to go was up, so he started to climb one of the lighting rigs, much to the horror of the Big Apple staff:

Seemingly lost and possibly bored, Ariel also took some of the set to sit down and chat with audience members, give one concert-goer a hug, and eventually he made his grand exit by calmly walking out of the venue.

“I’ll tell you a secret — I’m not going to finish this set.”

Confounding, discombobulating, but utterly fascinating, Ariel Pink was the only act to bring a little good ol’ fashion intrigue and drama to the night.

Part of me wonders if he basically gave up on trying to compete with the herd of magical white ponies had mesmerized the crowd minutes before his own set. I’m not sure how someone is supposed to follow PONIES.

I’d like to take this moment to apologize to the girl sitting in front of me since I think I screamed “PONIES!” for 5 minutes straight into her ear while the galloping troupe of heaven sent ponies pranced around and around the ring.

First Music Boner of 2011: The Vaccines

I admittedly have my ebbs and flows when it comes to my interest in music, and 2010 was definitely a year in which I leaned upon my American sensibilities with interest in more homegrown talent, with genuine affections for groups that many would label “standard” indie hipster favorites — Best Coast, Wavves, Warpaint, Dale Earnhardt Jr. Jr. — mixed with deliciously horrible pop loves like Bruno Mars. But something in the air is telling me 2011 is going to be a strong year for UK obsessions.

To start 2011 with a Brit-flavored beginning, I’m going to direct you to a band I just saw on MTVU (possibly the only MTV channel that actually plays music videos) called The Vaccines. Up until a few months ago, they didn’t even have a website or MySpace page and only just played their first London gig in October, but as soon as they had, the British press got themselves into a frenzy, hailing The Vaccines as the leaders of a new wave of (British) music.

With lead singer Justin James Hayward-Young‘s ties to successful acts like Mumford & Sons, Laura Marling, and Noah and the Whale, the band already has a head start in terms of respected industry buzz, but it remains to be seen whether the four piece will fare just as well here in the States. Sink or swim time comes in just a few weeks with their first New York City shows at Bowery Ballroom and Glasslands on the 20th and 22nd respectively. 32ft/sec is predicting a US win, while Soundbites is cautiously hedging his bets with a wait and see attitude. I’m on the hopefully optimistic side, their song “Wreckin’ Bar (Ra Ra Ra),” really winning me over with it’s fast, upbeat tempo, and the perfectly situated extremely British “crowd chanting section”. I’m rooting for these guys.

Mesmerizing twirling disco ball music video for “Wreckin’ Bar (Ra Ra Ra)”:

More on The Vaccines: Drowned in Sound, My Old Kentucky Blog

Coldplay Spreads Some Christmas Cheer with “Christmas Lights”

I love Christmas music! And today Coldplay added to their Christmas canon (see Mince Spies) with the release of a new Yuletide tune, “Christmas Lights.”

The video, directed by Mat Whitecross and filmed in London on November 25th, features the band in a charming children’s Xmas panto-type setting, then opens up onto a Baz Lurhman-esque city of Christmas lights.

Happy holidays!

Guilty Pleasure of the Night: “New Low” by Middle Class Rut

I’m watching MTV U, and they just played the video for “New Low” by Middle Class Rut which apparently was quite popular on “alternative” rock stations in 2007-2008. I’ve never heard this song, and I can tell by this totally over-the-top video that it’s a band that’s not very “cool,” but there’s something about this song I really kinda enjoy.

Here’s a video of some chick covering it:

Here’s the official music video:

I like the twangy westerny vibe to it…

According to the Middle Class Rut’s tour dates, they are playing with both Neon Trees and My Chemical Romance, so yes, they definitely seem to be up my soft spot for horrible music alley.

Reasons Why the Kings of Leon Dude Judged Food on “Iron Chef”

Just a few days ago the episode of Iron Chef featuring Kings of Leon front man Caleb Followill as one of the guest judges was finally aired on the Food Network. The segment (which was filmed over a year ago) features Caleb dispensing refined culinary judgment (“it could have used a little bit of salt,” “is it OK if you eat it all?”) about the chef’s preparation of the secret ingredient: veal.

But I gotta say, the combo of a perpetually bearded rock musician with a food competition doesn’t seem the likeliest of pairings, so what could have been the reason why Caleb agreed to be a judge? Some possible answers:

1. Was told the secret ingredient was going to be pigeon.
2. Man cannot live on BBQ and beer alone.
3. Two word: flavor saver.

Ryan Adams Dresses Down for Mandy Moore’s Big “Tangled” Premiere

Last night was the LA premiere of the new animated Disney princess flick, Tangled, for which Mandy Moore lent her sugary sweet voice to the character of Rapunzel.

While Mandy was decked out in a futuristic-looking hot pink one-shoulder dress, Ry Ry chose to go casual with his standard checked shirt + jeans ensemble.

I gotta say, these two look so happy together. They look like such a great couple.

On the “awww” mushy note, take a listen to this rendition of Ryan and Mandy doing a “Oh My Sweet Carolina” duet during a rehearsal for a 826LA benefit from last month hosted by Judd Apatow. Adorable!

Florence Welch Charms Chelsea Handler

The English rose Florence Welch and frontwoman of Florence and the Machine made her “chat show” debut on Chelsea Handler. You can tell Chelsea really is smitten with her because she hardly gives her any flack. Adorable!

Gerard Way on the Cover of NME

I love the new NME cover featuring My Chemical Romance‘s Gerard Way w/ his flaming red hair. Notice, it’s the same color palate as this website? How could I not fall in love with it?

If you haven’t seen the “Na Na Na” music video, you need to. It’s geniusly campy and cartoony. Love My Chem.

Yes, I will be buying their new album “Danger Days” on 11/22/10 and singing and dancing along to it in front of my bedroom mirror for the next 3 months.