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August 23, 2006


The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reports that Nick Nolte has joined the cast for the film adaptation of Michael Chabon's debut novel, The Mysteries of Pittsburgh. Nolte will play the father of the protagonist.

Harmonium interviews the National's Bryce Dessner.

Harmonium: Your first two discs were amazing in their own ways, but only with Alligator did you guys really start getting a lot of publicity. What do you think was the cause of this?

Dessner: Well the most obvious difference is the record was released on a much larger indie label (Beggars Banquet) – before we had self-released our albums with Brassland—a small label we helped found. So Alligator reached a much wider audience. But I think it was also our strongest record.

CMT lists the top 100 country duets.

The Rich Girls Are Weeping shares several Mountain Goats covers.

Drowned in Sound previews the Reading and Leeds music festivals, and lists ten bands you should see.

We Are Scientists' Chris Cain puts his iPod on shuffle for the Onion A.V. Club.

Cher, "If I Could Turn Back Time"

CC: I believe an aircraft carrier came into play on this one. Probably, G.I. Joe aside, the most important aircraft-carrier reference in the Western canon would be this track. It's definitely part of Reagan's plan to sugarcoat his huge defense-spending budget. And it worked.

The Onion A.V. Club lists "14 movies from two ages of theremin music."

Metromix interviews Erin Fein, and Tristan Wraight of Headlights.

You have a track called "The Midwest is the Best." What makes the Midwest the best?

Tristan: The corn! No, I'm just joking. I don't know. The Midwest is not the best in a lot of ways. Irony sometimes makes the Midwest the best. There's definitely a hospitable nature to people in the Midwest. You get told that you live in a flyover state a lot of times, and that's a really weird expression. I understand that a lot of culture and media happens outside of the Midwest so people kind of overlook or assume that not much is going on, but you have nice people and a lot of hard-working people that do a lot of great things.

Singer-songwriter Evan Dando talks to the Guardian.

Rob Fisk and George Chen of 7 Year Rabbit Cycle talk to the San Francisco Bay Guardian.

"I've been blessed with never having had a 10m-selling record," he says. "That ruins a lot of people's lives - though U2 seem OK. The music gets invariably bad. My high-school dream was to be in a band, pay my rent and eat - and I've been able to do that for 20 years. So I'm completely content."

"This is sort of a conscious move to do a rock record," says Chen.

"Not a rock record but a clean record," Fisk counters. "Clean ideas. I think the other two records have a lot of gut thrusting on it — they're like superphysical, Kelly screams a lot; Steve [Gigante of Tiny Bird Mouths], the drummer back then, was superbombastic. It was very cathartic, and it was recorded lo-fi — everybody gets away with everything. This time we were, like, OK, we're gonna go in and do a real recording and the catharsis is gonna be really controlled."

In the Telegraph, author Andrew O'Hagan rails against "misery memoirs," using the book by Pete Doherty's mother as a prime example of the genre.

A fairly new genre in bookselling is the Misery Memoir. Most of these are written by someone called Dave Peltzer, who has made many millions of dollars by telling people how unceasingly gruesome was his childhood. I think he wrote three books before his brother got in on the act - and no sooner had Frank McCourt written Angela's Ashes than his brother announced himself as a co-inhabitant of the grim family portrait, thereby cashing in on the family chaos.

Associated Content lists the "top ten blogs about writing and publishing. reviews the new Mountain Goats album, Get Lonely.

An uncannily coherent and subtly redemptive record which will come to be seen as Mountain Goats' most resonant, assured, and magical collection of songs so far.

Stylus finds a perfect musical moment in Radiohead's "You and Whose Army?".

As an admitted Radiohead flunky, 1:48 and on of “You and Whose Army?” is one of those goosefleshed expanses that makes me seek someplace to sit, to recover. It’s where Yorke as narrator goes from threat to action; he picks up his staff and he strikes. Yorke himself has always had the air of the stubbed-out schoolchild; it shouldn’t take “Creep” to convince you that this odd, diminutive bloke had seen some awkward times.