This is the dawning of the Age of You Know What, and things aren't as bad out there in media land as I had anticipated.
In fact, if you kind readers will indulge me, I will let you know in the words ahead what twists my dials as Millennium Three kicks in. I must preface this edition with the disclaimer that I really don't get out much anymore. Oh, it's nothing medical, or even interesting. I just don't. And after all, with a plethora of brilliant television programs, movies, CDs and books at my disposal, why should I--or you for that matter--leave the comfort of our homes. Or our parent's homes, if we're really lucky.
So, I hear you asking, what is it that Eddie has been reading lately?
A fair question.
The most current book in the library is Dean Koontz's latest, From The Corner of His Eye
Hang on for a scary ride with Orange County's most frightening export. This one had me booing the villian and doubting my capacity to even read about this twisted bastard's evil exploits for a second longer, when as usual, Mr. K steps up the ante with a three-dimensional supporting cast and an amazing hero. Believe me, you'll NEED an infusion of that "heart" by the time it's introduced in the pages of this guaranteed top-ten thriller. And someone to clean up the fingernails from the floor. You'll be a mess, but it's all good fun and wll worth the ride. Check this out: Joe Stefko, Turtles' drummer extrordinaire and owner of Charnel House Publishing is issuing an extremely limited, beautifully bound, numbered and signed edition of this book. There's only one thing better than reading a good book, and that is reading a good book that is a pleasure to hold, and aestetically pleasing to the eye. Joe's books are always a tactile sensation as well as a literary one, and I highly recommend that the serious among you contact Joe through either his link at this very site or by clicking here on Charnel House.
Friends of this column will also be familiar with my high praises often sung for another Orange County fantasy author, the brilliant Mr. Tim Powers. Everything you know is wrong. He's better than that. His most current release proves him to be miles ahead of any other author in the wide genre of dark fantasy. Declare
Spinal Tap I know...No one needs me to tell them that this is the best rock movie (well, if you don't count A Hard Day's Night, also currently available on DVD), but man, if you don't own the disc on this one, you are a bona fide jerk! There is a solid 4 1/2 hours of brilliance on this little piece of plastic. A full comentary of the film, start to finish, with all three Tap members, in character and at the top of their improv game; nearly two hours of deleted scenes...in effect, a totally NEW Spinal Tap documentary; music videos, tv ads, theatrical trailers. Every DVD should strive for the perfection of this issue. Hats off to Mr. Reiner and all at Castle Rock.
Fight Club's on DVD now...you had better buy it. Or else.
American History X is yet another Edward Norton film that demands ownership.
All of the Kevin Smith films are out in beautiful DVD editions... they would be Clerks, Mallrats, Chasing Amy and Dogma
It also rocks in South Park; Bigger, Longer and Uncut, where Trey Parker's evil mind and Mark Shaiman's Oscar-caliber compositions have made the best musical for the screen since... well, I don't know...maybe since Tommy
Horror fans note, Lucio Fulci's masterpiece of terror, The Beyond
Who here has never seen Farscape?
It is an absolutely brilliant program broadcast in the U.S. on the Sci-Fi Channel. The Jim Henson Company and Hallmark Hall of Fame people have combined to put together a series that, at any given time, rivals the best of Roddenbery's Star Trek. The characters are accessable, though not-neccessarily human, and the stories are full of valor and humor. Oh, did I mention that the space ship was alive and that the show also featured puppets. Well, more acurately Muppets. This IS a Henson show, after all.
But if that's not weird enough for you, there is always, Lexx.
I must publically take my hat off to close friend, Therese dePrez, she of the brilliant Production Design, for introducing me many many months ago to the music of Yo La Tengo. Let me say that again in case you didn't get that...
This is far and away my favorite band. In fact, to my ears, this is the best thing to hit music in decades, and I guess that I was among the last to know about them. I feel like the Close Encounters ship landed about ten years ago, and no one told me about it. Ira Kaplan and his wife and co-conspiritor Georgia Hubley have distilled music down to fantastic chord progressions, tender lyrics and inspired performances that have guided them on the tiny Matador record label to become alternative music's most popular couple over the past ten or eleven years. My first experience was hearing their classic, I Can Hear the Heart Beating As One (1997) , not more than a year ago. My jaw hit the ground. The elegance of Eno and the compassion of Ray Davies...unforgetable. Then I bought their more recent CD, And Then Nothing Turned Itself Inside-Out,(2000), and my "rush" could only be discribed as akin to that of first hearing Rubber Soul. I kid you not. If you're a romantic, of ANY age of musical taste, you will LOVE these guys. and soon you too will own, Electr-o-Pura President Yo La Tengo/New Wave Hot Dogs Genius Plus Love =Yo La Tengo May I Sing With Me Painful Fakebook Ride the Tiger Danelectro
There could be more, and I'm sure that they have a website...
And finally, a gentle reminder, kind readers. For the best gift idea this winter, or to suppliment your own collection, it is MANDITORY that you purchase Rhino's latest DVD, Happy Together, The History of the Turtles
No more preaching to the initiated.
the artist formerly known as EDDIE
aka Howard Kaylan