Sunday, February 17, 2008

TOP TEN ANIME THEME SONGS

You Won’t See Me Coming”

Jean Jacques Brunel (Gankutsuou:The Count of Monte Cristo)

A dark but energetic techno tune with sinister vocals by former Stranglers bassist Jean-Jacques Brunel that foreshadows the many machinations of the mysterious Count.


Hikari To Kage O Dakishimeta Mama”

--Naomi Tamura (Magic Knight Rayearth)

I’m not too into magical-girls shows, but I love this song. It’s like a lost 70’s bubblegum hit you can’t get out of your head.


Tandem”

--HALCALI (Mr. Stain on Junk Alley)

Another song that really sticks in your ear, this hip-pop song with a Latin/Ska beat makes me want to dance every time I hear it.


Ready Steady Go”

--L'Arc-en-Ciel (Fullmetal Alchemist)

This anthemic pop-punk song perfectly represents the innocent but determined spirit of the show’s Elric Brothers.


Tank!”

--The Seatbelts (Cowboy Bebop)

A jazzy 60’s –style instrumental is perfect for this retro-futurist series that is full of references to 60s and 70’s Japanese and American television.


Guardian Angel”

--Juno Reactor (Texhnolyze)

A dark techno-industrial tune sets the mood for this dystopian science fiction anime.


Yume no Shima Shinen Kouen”

--Susumu Hirasawa (Paranoia Agent)

Off-beat electronica with unidentifiable World-Beat influences (Tibetan? Finnish? Bulgarian?) sets the stage for a thought-provoking anime.


Cruel Angel’s Thesis”

--Yoko Takahashi (Neon Genesis Evangelion)

A techno number so upbeat it starts to sound sinister as the anime gets darker and darker.


Yakusoku”

--Akino Arai (Windaria)

An oldie but goodie, this yearning ballad perfectly conveys the tragedy of the anime’s star-crossed lovers. Not recommended for people with low 80’s pop tolerance (I can’t get enough, myself).


Cautionary Warning”

--John Sykes (Black Heaven)

A show about a former Metal guitarist whose music saves a whole planet needs a kick-ass opening tune like this one from former Whitesnake guitarist John Sykes.



Bonus worst anime theme song: “Stray”–Steve Conte (Wolf’s Rain)

The Wolf’s Rain soundtrack is by anime soundtrack goddess Yoko Kanno, who also did Cowboy Bebop, but this opening theme song just annoys me. It’s so mellow and middle-of-the-road, more for a dentist’s office or a romantic TV-movie on the Hallmark Channel than a dark and thoughtful science-fictional adventure. The first time I heard it, I was already tired of it.





Friday, February 15, 2008

FAVORITE MUSICAL NUMBERS IN MOVIES

Everything in The Band Wagon, Singin' in the Rain, and Meet Me in St. Louis is good. Other favorites:

The Nicholas Brothers, "I've Got a Gal in Kalamazoo", Orchestra Wives
Marilyn Monroe, "After You Get What You Want", There's No Business Like Show Business
Jo Kennedy, "Body & Soul", Starstruck
Ethel Merman & Donald O'Connor, "You're Just in Love", Call Me Madam
John Cameron Mitchell, "Wicked Little Town", Hedwig & the Angry Inch
Angela Lansbury, "Little Yellow Bird", The Picture of Dorian Gray
"Sodomy", Meet The Feebles
"Jaan Pehechaan Ho", Gumnaam (featured in Ghost World)
Anna Karina, Sami Frey, & Claude Brasseur "The Madison", Band of Outsiders
Mick Jagger, "Memo From Turner", Performance
"Buckle Down, Winsocki", Best Foot Forward
Dolores Gray, "Thanks A Lot, But No Thanks", It's Always Fair Weather
Gene Kelly, "Pirate Ballet", The Pirate
"Pop! Goes My Heart", Music and Lyrics
"Chal Chaiyya Chaiyya", Dil Se
"Gala Gala Happy", City Hunter
Marlene Dietrich, "See What the Boys in the Back Room Will Have", Destry Rides Again
"Sukiyaki", A Hero Never Dies
Jonathan Rhys Meyers & Shudder To Think, "The Ballad of Maxwell Demon", Velvet Goldmine

Unfavorite: anything from The Sound of Music. It's so wholesome it makes my teeth ache. Music and dancing is supposed to be sexy, dammit!

Here's a selection of all the ones on the list I was able to find on YouTube for your enjoyment:






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Now playing: Black Sabbath - War Pigs/Luke's Wall
via FoxyTunes

Thursday, February 07, 2008

UPDATE

I submitted my previous post to LiveJournal's Apple Core to see what my fellow Mac-ies thought. Here is the conversation that ensued. Some support of Apple TV, Netflix, and HD options, but no love for the cable companies. I'm sorry, cable companies, but nobody loves you! Is it your high prices? The fact that you want web sites to pay more for faster access to the net? Your plan to charge a per-gigabyte fee for Internet use, possibly to hobble iTunes movie rentals in favor of your pay-per-view? What is everybody's problem, anyway?



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Now playing: Lowrider - Convoy V
via FoxyTunes

Sunday, February 03, 2008

TV AND ME ARE THROUGH, PART II: A NEW HOPE

Well, the combination of the writer's strike and the horror of the new television season has made me very, very glad for Netflix and its delivery of quality television on DVD to my home. At this rate, I may even pull the plug on the $10-a-month fee I pay to Comcast to get any TV reception in my scenically located bachelorette pad.

My dream is that someday, I can think of a movie or TV show I want to see, then instantly transfer it from my computer to my TV, all without the yoke of an oppressive monthly bill from the cable or dish companies. Well, now that Apple TV lets you rent movies, it's coming pretty darn close. And the price has dropped, so why not? The main draw-back is that if they come up with something even better in a year, I'll feel stupid. Still, it's a better bet than buying a Blu-Ray or HD-DVD player, which are much more expensive than Apple TV and also require buying movies in a new format. The media is talking about Blu-Ray and HD-DVD as if it's a VHS-vs-Beta thing, but what if it's more like DAT or laserdisc or 8-track, and both formats represent a dead end which will be rejected in favor of some sort of streaming option? That's my guess, anyway.



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Now playing: Echo & The Bunnymen - The Game
via FoxyTunes