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Friday Grapeshot: Smashing Pumpkins, iPods, PLUG Awards, and Beyonce



Maria, don’t these two look like Nicole and Mary Grace?

Friday Grapeshot

Call it Friday’s Mixtape Mondays, or Wednesday’s DVD Mixtape Thursdays–just in time for the weekend, industry news is getting awesome. Here’s what we got for you:

Smashing Pumpkins Reunite

Looks like James Iha might have to bail on the Stellastarr* remix project and retire his perpetually out-on-town but “man, i’m trying to stand under the radar, man” shtick.

Beyond the obvious and onerous–$$$, after the public didn’t embrace Corgan’s solo bedroom shoegaze debut, dude needs to eat, and I’m sure there are weird legal publishing rights issues w/r/t playing Smashing Pumpkins songs as, say, Billy Corgan & Friends, etc.–there’s something pretty special to how Corgan’s spun the reunion. From the Tribune ad, to his antagonistic relationship with the band, to Chamberlin signing on immediately and the others ranging from intrigued and a bit hopeful to “no comment,” I dunno the whole thing feels very prodigal son to me. Corgan’s more or less admitted he needs the band, desperate to bring it back for his own mental livelihood, “this is all I have” Jake & Elwood type stuff. Again, it’s same old same old with these reunion tours, and I’ll probably pay however much to go see them play “Rocket” again because it’s like that (I like rockets), but intentional or not this seems warmer than, like, the Pixies reunion.

Shameless iPod Hearing Loss Lawsuit

John Kiel Patterson is the latest sonnuvabitch to turn the US legal system against itself until cash spills out on him like that lady who spilled all the McDonalds coffee on her lap.

But hey! This is as good a time as ever to plug NOISEBUSTER Pro Tech NB-FX Noise Canceling Headphones!, a pair of which the company sent me for review about a week ago after my first iPod piece caused a ripple in the world of cancelled noise. Seriously, go buy a pair and tell them I sent you, or they’ll probably make me send them back and I can’t find the box.

PLUG Awards

Happened last night, covered in great detail here. The real jam was backstage: two kinds of pita bread, lots of hummus, and a man I’m told was C-Rayz Walz. This guy and I were snacking when all the sudden a ball of trash materialized in his hand and Walz decided we were playing one-on-one basketball, the trashcan behind me the net. He tried some fake-outs (eating more snacks) but then did the thing where you pretend to throw the ball in the opponent’s face and say “in your eye!” but then actually shoot the ball into the net. C-Rayz’s version of this move was to say “in your eye,” accidentally spit cracker crumbs in my face, throw the piece of trash against the wall, then pick the trash up the ground and leave the room indefinitely.

Beyonce [ft. Slim Thug]: “Check On It”

#1 again this week, and it’s OK enough, certainly not an outrage like “Hollaback Girl” was for me. At this point it’s less about songs, more about Beyonce’s New Single. But the more I listen, the more I realize how sub-par of a sub-par “Goodies” this song comes off–the sentiment too half-assed for me to care about let alone respect either B or Slim Thug here, the tease of it all not particularly hard-to-get at all, and hard-to-get is the only thing worth getting. Compare Beyonce:

Ima let you work up on it and I can be a tease but I really wanna please you and if you don’t go braggin, I’ll make sure you have it

to Ciara:

No you can’t call me later

Or the dudes, Slim:

I’m checking on you boo, do what chu do
And while dance I’ma glance at this beautiful view
I’m keep my hands in my pants, I need to glue em w/ glue
I’m in a trance all eyes on you and your crew

to Petey:

I got a sick reputation for handlin broads
All I need is me a few seconds or more

I’m the truth and ain’t got nothin’ to prove and

Hey shawty you think you bad
but you ain’t bad
I’ll show you what bad is.

To say nothing of the Goodies squelch vs. Swizz’s phone-in. Song or bar, when has nice ever worked?

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