Thursday, April 28, 2011

Disney On The Mind

I have been thinking of all things Disney since I planned my trip to Disneyland a few weeks ago. I have always been a huge fan of Disney, even though I am no longer a kid nothing reminds me of my childhood like a good Disney movie, song, or trip back to Disneyland itself. Recently I checked out a few documentaries that had to do with all things Disney, most of them can be viewed on netflix instant watch or rental. If you are into Disney like me and would like to see some interesting insights from the creators of Disney movies and music check out these films:

Waking Sleep Beauty

I saw this one a few months ago and found it to be a great look into Disney animation during the 80's and 90's. It has some footage you will never see anywhere else because it was filmed in the Disney studios by the animators who worked there. The focus is about how Disney animation was losing its way in the 80's and then hits like Little Mermaid, Aladdin, and Lion King got animation hot again and also made some of the best animated films ever. You get some insights that I feel does also not portray Disney studios in the best light but is its true to itself.

The Pixar Story

I always wanted to learn more about Pixar and how it became the great studio it is today. The Pixar Story is a little dated (was released in 2007) but does show a great story about how animators had to painstakingly animate these stories because they loved them so much. Pixar didn't just get lucky but got the best artists, writers, and directors to work together to make the best animated movies of today. It shows how the small company has become what it is today, worth a watch!

The Boys: The Sherman Brothers' Story

This movie focuses on the Sherman brothers, a team who wrote many of the best songs featured in Disney movies or at attractions in Disneyland. This is more about the relationship between the brothers and how they remained distant even though they worked together for many years. You get some great insight into Walt Disney himself, he worked with the brothers and they collaborated on Mary Poppins and the Jungle Book (to name a few). You do get some very good looks into Disney's past and how the studio used to run, this is a must see for Disney fans.

If you are in the bay area and are a huge Disney fan I strongly recommend you check out The Walt Disney Family Museum in San Francisco. I went here a few months ago on a trip and it was truly an amazing insight into who Walt Disney is and how he became the legend he is today. You can check out the web site here: Disney Museum.

Friday, April 15, 2011

RIP Reaper

As I had done with the great show Party Down I am here today to talk about another show taken from us too early, Reaper. Reaper aired on the CW for a couple of years and most likely never found its audience. I remember watching the first season when it came out and then they started to change around the time it was on and it was hard to find and watch (this was before I had a DVR). Reaper was the story of Sam Oliver a normal guy who works at a Home Depot-ish store the Work Bench with his two best friends Sock and Ben. His long crush Andi also works with them. When Sam turns 21 he learns that his parents sold his soul to the devil in order to keep his dad from dying of illness, so in turn Sam now has to work for the devil and go around collecting souls that have escaped from hell.

The show has some great comedic elements to it, The best part of the series was by far the devil played by Ray Wise. They made the devil with a sick sense of humor and Wise is just perfect casting. He is smart, deceptive, and just enough of a sleeze ball to fit the part perfect. The interaction between him and Sam is some of the best stuff in the show in my opinion. The devil takes a liking to Sam and will sometimes help him out in his adventures. Each episode the devil will show up and give Sam a vessel in which he captures the soul. When the soul is captured in the vessel he has to take it to the DMV to be sent back to hell.

I won't ruin too much of the story but it turns out Sam and the devil are linked by far more then Sam ever thought. Sam's friends end up moving out together later on and have two neighbors who turn out to be demon's, played by Ken Marino and Michael Ian Black. I thought it funny that Marino shows up again in another great series cancelled too early (he was in Party Down, read my blog HERE).

The show sort of played out like Ghostbusters for a new generation, I really liked the humor (Kevin Smith directed the pilot and consulted on the first season). I guess I should be lucky that they completed two seasons of the show, both of which can be watched on netflix instant streaming as of today. It makes me sad to see another good show taken away before its time but I am left with the good memories that I got from the show.

I could only find a few clips from the show, but you can sort of get a sense of the humor of the devil in this clip.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Upcoming Music

I am not going to tell you how to spend you money on music, I am by no means one of these people who think you should only listen to one type of music and all else sucks. But I have noticed that 2011 is shaping up to have some great releases of music that I am into so I wanted to share on my blog some upcoming releases that have me excited.

Beastie Boys - The Hot Sauce Committee Part 2

I wasn't even aware there was a Hot Sauce Committee Part 1, but on May 3rd you can get your hands on the newest album from one of my all time favorite groups. The last album I am aware they released was called The Mix Up, an all instrumental album which was out in 2007. This makes the Hot Sauce Committee their first album in 4 years. So far I love what I have heard on this track entitled Make Some Noise, below you can check out the new song.

I was also on the site earlier and saw this video with some amazing comedic talents of today. I am not sure what it is but it seems as if it will lead to a longer version, cannot wait to see what they can do with this.

Death Cab For Cutie - Codes and Keys

I have been into DCFC since I heard Plans and I really enjoyed their last couple of albums (Narrow Stairs and The Open Door (EP)). They are one of my current favorite bands who mix great vocals with the rock I so love. So when I heard they were releasing a new album I was stoked. I nervously listened to their new single, hoping it would live up to the previous works and I was happy to say it sounds good and the band is only getting better. Check out the video for their new single You Are A Tourist (which they are saying is the first live, scripted, one take music video ever made) off Codes and Keys, in stores everywhere May 31st!

Foo Fighters - Wasting Light

I have always been a fan of the Foo Fights music but to be honest the last few albums were not my cup of tea. I think Dave Grohl is a huge talent and I most likely always stick by him because of his talent and link to Nirvana. Foo Fighters new album was getting a good buzz and I heard that it returned to more of the hard rock that I liked in the past. April 12 you can get their new album, Wasting Light. I check out their web site the other day was glad to see they had the entire album for preview and I really liked what I heard. Here is one of the songs that will be appearing on Wasting Light:

Lonely Island - Turtleneck & Chain

What can I say, I really like some comedy in my music and The Lonely Island happens to be the best at it nowadays. A lot of the Lonely Island's music has already been aired on Saturday Night Live, just like the last album with Dick In A Box, Lazy Sunday, and I'm On A Boat. I cannot wait to see what else the guys have in store that hasn't been shown on SNL already. On May 10 you can get their newest album, Turtleneck & Chain, I recommend you get it with the DVD as well, it has all the videos that have already been recorded. Score! Here is one of the songs you most likely will not see on SNL, We're Back!

Airborne Toxic Event - All At Once

Airborne Toxic Event really came out of nowhere for me, we actually played their album when I was working at Barnes and Noble (we also did this with the last Beastie Boys album) and I really thought I was listening to something special. The band really seems to like each other and they do lots of different types of videos where they try to play music almost anywhere. They are a fun band and I really can feel emotion in Mikel Jollett's (the lead singer) vocals. I cannot wait to go out and get their new album All At Once, coming out this month (April 26). Check out the new single Changing in the video below and you can see what I mean about them liking to just be musicians and playing music.

Well those are just a few of the albums I am excited about, if you like some of what you see let me know and I can burn you the album or let me know what your looking forward too and we can talk music.