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MAKE IT EASY has a video — memorize it now!



Director/Producer: Melissa Tomjanovich
Director of Photography/Editor: Jesse Patch
Digital Effects: Andy Vatter
Alien Marauders: Chris Urbanowicz, Tim Wheeler, Mike Pace, Danny Lee Allen, Ken Cook, Keith Carne, J. David Nugent, John-Claude Van Damme
With Keith Murray and Chris Cain as “Earth’s Last Great Hope”

(Don’t like Youtube? Check it out on Vimeo: https://vimeo.com/95552697)

A Tour, A Single, A Video, A Sale

tourposter

You Gum-Chewing Speed Walkers,

Our new single, I DON’T BITE, is out this week in the UK, and it is vaulting up the charts like a monkey with Indiana Jones’s hat running up a ladder to get away from that bastard Indiana Jones. Part of what has people so excited – besides the fact that I DON’T BITE, when played backward on a record player, is “Hotel California” – are the b-sides. We got Dev Hynes, a.k.a. Lightspeed Champion, to cover “Rules Don’t Stop”; and we got Aaron Pfenning, a.k.a. Rewards, to cover “Nice Guys.” So you get covers of the first two singles off of BARBARA, made by two of today’s most exciting young music artists. These guys paint with sound – you gotta admit, it’s exciting!

You can download all three of these admittedly exciting tunes here.

If none of the songs we’re talking about are familiar to you, then you probably don’t own our new album, BARBARA. For the first time in your life, you’re in luck: We’re offering a special download price of Four Pounds & Something Pence (!!!) to anybody with a downloader/computer. That’s cheaper than before! If you’re interested, take a look at this button:

UK Push-button

Euro Push-button

If you live somewhere other than the UK or Europe – and these days, many do – don’t let the lack of a dedicated button get you down. Because of your comparatively weak currency, BARBARA is already cheaper than Four Pounds & Something Pence in your country! Go enjoy your own natural sale price right now: Natural State of Sales.

Now, earlier we talked about “painting with sound” and how that’s a pretty exciting thing. Well if you did indeed think that painting with sound seemed exciting, wait until you see what we were able to do simply by crooning images. Last year, using an arcane method called “crooning images,” we created a video series called STEVE WANTS HIS MONEY. It aired on MTV in the UK, but it was difficult to watch online, and has never been released in any form outside of Europe. It’s a modern day tragedy – people all over the world with limited access to health care, clean water, and STEVE WANTS HIS MONEY. Well, no longer. Today, Episode 1 becomes available on our YouTube page. And each Wednesday for the next two months we’ll release another episode. The quality will be extra-high, the performances will grab your heart like the evil cultist in “Indiana Jones & The Temple of Doom” grabbed hearts, and the jokes will have you chuckling to yourself even later on, in the shower, when you look down at your naked body – a time of day when you’re usually openly depressed. Seriously, if you thought the joke earlier in this paragraph about health care and clean water was in poor taste, you’re going to love the rich, delicious taste of SWH$.

Finally, and maybe most importantly of all, we just started another two months of touring. We’re hitting the eastern side of North America, swooping all the way down to Florida and Texas; we’re dropping in to Germany, Austria, Switzerland, France, Amsterdam, Belgium, & Scandinavia; and we’re canvassing the UK and Ireland. Why? Because Keith left his lucky toothpaste somewhere, and we can’t remember where. So we’re on the hunt. If you see his toothpaste – he can’t remember if it was Colgate or Crest, but he thinks it was one of those – please let us know *immediately* so that we can cancel the rest of this tour. Until we find that toothpaste, though, we’ll be bringing our exciting live show to your favorite or second-favorite local club, and we’ll be bringing great support acts including Rewards, Gold Heart Assembly, Twin Tigers, & others. We spent some time in September dusting off some old gems, so you can also look forward to hearing a few oldies that haven’t been around in a while. Gawk at the dates here.

CHILI’S BAR & GRILL

827 Odd Fellows Rd
Crowley, LA 70526
(337) 783-1493

1/5 stars

This is probably the worst meal we’ve ever had on the road. There are only two things affirmative to be said about this place: our waitress, despite being a total flake and pretty disagreeable, had a nice accent; and none of us got sick (although we all felt kind of hungover afterward, like we had let our bodies down).

We were lured to Chili’s by a vague memory of decent margaritas enjoyed at the Odessa, TX, Chili’s two years ago. Difficult to say if we were remembering wrong or if the Crowley Chili’s is just breaking all kinds of franchise regulations and making all of the food and drinks by reconstituting powder. Whatever the case, we sat down wanting more than anything to like the margaritas. We flipped through the over-elaborate cocktail menu like doe-eyed ingenues on the evening of their 21st birthdays, cooing and gasping with anticipation. We settled on the “World’s Freshest Margarita”, which in retrospect we realize was given its name as a sinister prank. The 15 minutes it took for the margs to come out was, we told ourselves, promising – the bartender must be slicing and squeezing limes, carefully measuring proportions, chilling glasses, gently salting rims, etc. In fact, he was in the bathroom smelling his own farts and graffiti-ing the walls with huge-cocked trolls. Then he emptied one packet of the “W.F. Marg” powder into some hot water, stirred it with a cheese-encrusted spoon, and poured the urine-colored result over ice. Our margaritas were absolutely terrible. There is no reason for these margaritas to exist in the world. They are as tragic and unnecessary in 2010 as death by polio.

Even after having the skull of our expectations caved in by the jackbooted margaritas, we retained enough sensation to be upset by the food. If you were on a budget airline, and the food cart rolled up, and the flight attendant told you the food was all “south west” themed, and you bought some of it, you would be served the exact same thing Chili’s serves (and probably at the same price). The food ranged from an impossibly bland house salad to a vulgar plate of carnitas tacos, to a bean burger that Keith called “a glimpse into the depravity man is capable of committing when he’s unchecked in the middle of the bayou.”  All of it was reconstituted from powder by a droid in the kitchen.

It’s worth noting that Chili’s awful food is matched by awful service, so at least it can boast of having a certain perverse coherence. After the insane wait for drinks, our salads came out spaced at regular 5 minute intervals, affording that much-desired private dining experience, though you be a table with friends. Probably the sporadic pacing is the result of the droid in the kitchen having only a single pincer apparatus at its disposal – certainly a droid like Wall-E would have had no problem prepping the food in a more orderly fashion.

If this Chili’s had been about 25% better, we could easily say that we’d never go to another Chili’s again as long as we live. It was so bad, though, that we’re now compelled to visit another location in order to verify that the Crowley site was not a bizarre anomaly, possibly the result of a satanic curse transmitted by Li Grand Zombi when he was unable to get a table at the ante-curse, totally-okay Crowley Chili’s.

[3 out of 3 of us agree with this review]

Own RULES DON'T STOP In This Moment

Whether you live in England, France, the Moon (yes, in the Moon!), or Mars (yes, in Mars!), you can now take home a pristine copy of “Rules Don’t Stop” in your favorite digit-based format. You will also receive “Down The Hall”, a b-side that we almost made an a-side, it’s so pretty-good. Do as the button commands:

Click to POSSESS

The BIG FUCKIN' DEAL tour: a select few will own the tee.

To commemorate a tour as small as this week’s BIG FUCKIN’ DEAL tour, one would need a truly small number of t-shirts. That’s why we printed up exactly 30 of these beauties:

bfd_sketchThey’ll be at the merch booth Wednesday-Saturday, and when they’re gone, nothing, not even James Cameron, will get us to print more.

3 cities. 4 days. Guys it’s the BIG FUCKIN’ DEAL tour.

Jan 20, 2010 Johnny Brenda’s, Philadelphia, PA
Jan 21, 2010 Black Cat, Washington, DC
Jan 23, 2010 Maxwell’s, Hoboken, NJ

Steve Wants His Money returns!

Don’t forget to watch Episode 2 of Steve Wants His Money tonight at 22:55 on MTV UK.  If you forget now, after we’ve just reminded you, like, half an hour before it airs, it means you are a dummy.  Or drunk.  Both of which are bad.  The basis by which we judge good vs. bad in We Are Scientists is by estimating whether or not it will hurt you in a job interview.  So, being a dummy: bad.  Being drunk: bad.  Having your genitals all visible: bad (most of the time).

Enjoy!

Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith

Well, George Lucas has finally abandoned his dedication to mostly-digital or all-digital productions and made a totally organic film that adheres to Dogme 95 standards, and the results are very nice. Instead of the cold, lifeless shapes and colors that filled the last two Star Wars installments, in this film we get nothing but the real thing: real lava, real metal robots, real HUGE LIZARDS, real YODA, real DOG-HAIR costumes for the wookies (spoiler: yes, I said ‘wookies’; yes, the wookies are back and thank goodness), etc. The difference is huge. The film opens with an elaborately staged space battle — ships and lasers and droids whizzing in every direction like hi-tech shrapnel — and it just feels so damn real. Because it IS real! Which is a big part of the fun in watching this movie: you think to yourself, Holy crap, how did they do this without using digital effects?
If Lucas did a 180 on digital because the fans complained, then it wasn’t the only area where he listened to fans. All the naysayers who called episodes I and II proof that George Lucas can’t write dialog are now wiping the crap out of their eyes. Revenge of the Sith boasts Harold Pinter-level dialog. At one point Anakin lops off Lord Dooku’s head (spoiler: yes lops off his head, thus killing him) and Supreme Chancellor Palpatine goes, “Good! Goo-hoo-hoo-hood!”, and Anakin goes, “It doesn’t FEEL good,” and Palpatine says, “Ha ha ha. Good, Anakin.” When the first Padme-Anakin scene begins, I felt everyone in the audience tighten up in anticipation of some dialog blows to the head, but instead what they got was this:
ANAKIN: “Nnnngh…”
PADME: “What’s wrong, Ani?”
ANAKIN: “I won’t lose you” (and yet he does, to childbirth (spoiler))
PADME: “I love you.”
ANAKIN: “What is… Oh. Was Obi-Wan here earlier?”
PADME: “Obi-Wan. He’s worried about you.”
ANAKIN: “Worried about ME? Don’t you remember how I was the one who saved his life?”
PADME: “He said he remembers that, yes, but that he worries.”
ANAKIN: “Worries about what? About dying when I’m at home with you because no one will be there to save him?”
PADME: “No. Oh… maybe. I don’t think so. He said you. Obi-wan is worried.”
ANAKIN: “Obi-wan was here?”
PADME: “Yes, Anakin, he’s worried.”
ANAKIN: “About dying? Because who will save him?”
PADME: “Yes, I think so.”
ANAKIN: “Well… I wonder if he’s even still alive right now. It’s been forty minutes.”
There’s never even an explicit acknowledgment that Anakin has used a Jedi mind trick to persuade Padmé, but the dialog is so well done that you know exactly what’s going on without anybody saying “Jedi mind trick” aloud as in past movies.
(Spoiler:) Yoda is in this film. At one point he kills a dog with a sling-shot and everyone in the audience went crazy with grief. He’s actually sort of the main character, and in one scene he drives a truck off a bridge and you wonder if even his jedi skills will bring him safely through — they don’t (spoiler: dead). In another delightful scene that by itself enriches the series immeasurably, Yoda says this to Obi-Wan (yes, Obi-Wan is back): “In two years time a child will be born unto the widow Merlin. Besieged by grief and fear of unnatural birth she will take her own life. You must save the child, whose destiny entwines with and lifts aloft the destiny of us all. Go to her disguised as a woodsman and ask for food and shelter. At night, while she slumbers, place this leaf atop the swell of her belly. Three days thence she will swallow poison. After she dies you will have the sands of this hourglass to cut the child from her. You must take it to the black hills and await me there. Remember that if you are caught all is lost, now go!” says Yoda. A satisfying ending to a hit-and-miss but ultimately great series of films.

Elevators

It’s my feeling that we’ve drastically underthought the elevator. Here is a device that could offer many useful functions, but is instead offering only one: delivering people and objects from one floor to another in multi-story buildings. It makes me sick, and I’d like to workshop a few ideas.

  • The Elevator as Mobile Closet: So you live in a huge house – a ten-story house, let’s say. And you love to really occupy all those floors. You’re back and forth, up and down, sometimes sleeping on 3, sometimes shooting a game of pool on 8, etc. Why should you always have to go to your bedroom on 10 in order to access your clothes or your rollerblades or porno-mags or what have you? Well, you don’t! No, all you have to do is make your elevator your closet — install shelves, hanging bars, magazine racks — and you’ll be able to call it to you from any floor in your house — even the lobby! Your house has a lobby, can you believe it?! Way to go, kid — you totally went all the way with your idea about novelty pencils where the lead breaks super easily!

  • The Elevator as Desk Area: Do you work two jobs? Are they for two different companies that happen to be in the same building, just on different floors? Isn’t it a huge pain in the ass to try to be in both places all day long, servicing the needs of both the companies that have hired you to do a discrete, fulltime job for them? I hear that. Consider taking over one of the elevators as your desk area. That way you can quickly shuttle between one job and the other, keeping all your stuff right there in front of you on your desk. As a bonus, nobody will ever know if you’re actually gone, working at your other job, or simply working with the doors to your office closed to avoid distraction. Just tell the folks at either company that when they want to talk to you, they should push your doorbell, and you’ll come out as soon as you’re ready.
  • The Elevator as Plain Old Storage Closet: So you’ve got a bunch of elevators in your building — more than enough, in fact! What you could really use is another plain old storage closet in which to put boxes and maybe cleaning supplies and the like. No problem. Turn the power off in one of the elevators, wedge its doors open, fill the crack between the elevator and the walls and floor with plaster, run an extension cord in there and plug in a lamp — voila! You’ve got your storage closet!
  • Elevator as Incubator: Need to hatch some chicks, some baby chickens? Get you some of those hot bulbs — a bunch of them — and install them in the ceiling of the elevator. Now get some batting or hay or that easter-basket-fake-grass-tinsel stuff and line the floor with it — shoot for a good six to eight inches of insulation. Now nestle those eggs in there in the lining like you do, and sit back and let nature take its course. If you’re doing this as a classroom experiment, the elevator is a great idea because it allows you to share your experiment with classes on floors above and below yours. As a nice surprise, reach in and press the floor of Ms. Henry’s class; the elevator will whisk the chicks — batting, hotlamps and all — to the chosen floor and open up on Ms. Henry’s kids, giving them a great view of your simulation of the ovular gestation of baby chickens. Just make sure, if you ended up using the easter basket grass, to attach a sign that says, “Attention! These are NOT Easter eggs! These are live baby chickens undergoing ovular gestation before your eyes! The heatlamps simulate the warmth of mother hens who would normally sit on top of the eggs for weeks until the babies have hatched! Do not eat!” A nice prank to execute on say Halloween or April Fools is to take out the eggs and fill the elevator with blood (water dyed a nice deep red is fine) so that when it opens a sanguineous tidal wave crashes like an avalanche through Ms. Henry’s classroom. The trick is to leave the sign in the elevator so that the kids think something has gone wrong with the incubation process.