e-mail me at billdeg@umich.edu


random notes

I heard this on the radio the morning before yesterday. Members of Cheap Trick, The Smashing Pumpkins, Fountains of Wayne, and Hanson have formed a band. Of course they have. I guess the New Pornographers are no longer the coolest supergroup currently rockin' and rhymin' with Dokken.

Speaking of rockin', the Hamtramck Blowout, an annual fiesta of Detroit music, has announced its lineup. Seems the Dirtbombs and Detroit Cobras will entertain on consecutive nights at the K of C hall. That's two count 'em two bands that deserve to be on your Facebook '25 Albums' list, not to mention just about any self-respecting list of best live acts around.

Finally, a busy couple of weeks on campus and a spaghetti dinner have prevented me from much netflixing. However, I saw Girls Rock, a documentary about a "school or rock" camp for girls. Had high hopes for the piece but didn't think the doc really let viewers come to know the girls the camera follows. Interviews quickly gloss Big Issues (body image et al) without much depth. Another documentary disappoints. Ah well.

What We Do Is Secret struck me, meanwhile, as one of the better rock and roll biopics. Shane West stars as Darby Crash, the self-destructive Germs leader. Great performance. And the film handles Crash's nihilism/media savvy with such adeptness, embodying without glorifying his infamous five-year plan (which starts with forming a band and ends with the proverbial blaze of glory...learning how to play instruments happens somewhere in between). Crash's plan fails for one reason and one reason only (clue: it's got something to do with John Lennon). The great irony is that his death isn't what makes his story a tragedy. Very good film.

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