Blog Breakdown

RETIRED, SEE YA!
Music video blog that also includes video, audio, and interactive media. You'll find some reviews and recommendations from the underground of the entertainment world, covering music, film, gaming, and more.
Rummaging through the interweb since 2010

30 September, 2010

Music Video: The Dresden Dolls "Coin-Operated Boy"

The Dresden Dolls, or the odd couple as we like to call them, released this song in 2004. Besides being pretty funny, the song is written and performed by the lovely and talented Amanda Palmer, who, together with Brian Viglione, formed The Dresden Dolls back in 2000. Palmer is quite the controvercial figure in mainstream media, and her recent solo attempts have been more than successful. Ben Folds performed on and produced her 2008 album entitled Who Killed Amanda Palmer, and you know that our hats are always off to Ben. Some of Palmer's interesting musical influences include Death Cab for Cutie and Neutral Milk Hotel. Check out the video below, and here is a link to a parody of "Coin-Operated Boy" made by some folks at an internet humor site, a song in response entitled "Beer-Activated Girl". Enjoy!

Music Video: Mayer Hawthorne's "Green Eyed Love"

This here is one of my all time favorite music videos. I read somewhere that the concept of the video is based on an 1895 painting called The Green Muse by Albert Maignan. Mayer Hawthorne is one laid back dude, and his 2009 album, A Strange Arrangement, is definitely on MechanoChameleon's most listened to list. Below is the ubercool music video for the song that got us hooked on Mayer: Green Eyed Love. Sit back, relax, and enjoy the show. If you liked the song, we recommend that you check out the Classixx remix on Mayer Hawthorne's Myspace page, the track is arguably better than the orginial (and that's saying a lot!)

28 September, 2010

Hamra Lovin'

In the immortal words of random Hamra street stencils (Oh, and The Beatles)


And for those of you who need further instructions on the subject:



This post is braught to you by: Middle-of-the-night emotional outbursts. (And possibly PMS)

Over & out.


25 September, 2010

Music Video: Fleet Foxes' "White Winter Hymnal"

Fleet Foxes are one of our favorite folk bands. Their pure sound and simple music make them easy to love, and they are one of the few contemporary bands with such a complete understanding of the sentimental tune. "White Winter Hymnal" is just one of the many masterpieces that the band has produced thus far. It seems that a new album is being cooked up slowly. You can't rush great music!
The music video is absolutely gorgeous; clay animation and existential metaphors seem to go quite well together. Watch, listen, and enjoy!

24 September, 2010

Music Video: Hot Chip's "One Pure Thought"

Hot Chip: the masters of electropop/rock and the coolest sound geeks on (and possibly off) the planet. Down there is a music video from their fantastic 2008 album entitled Made in the Dark. The song is called "One Pure Thought", and it is by far one of the best songs on the album. The animation in the featured music video is pretty cool, not to mention funny. If you're a fan, more (full album) reviews on Hot Chip will be posted soon! Dance your socks off, and enjoy! ;)

World of Warcraft: Hedwig the Winterspring Owl


   For those of you who are not familiar, this post is about the World of Warcraft MMORPG. The smoking hot Bloof Elf in this screenshot is my Huntress, Anowyn in Moonglade. To the right is her brand new combat pet, Hedwig (Potter fans unite! and check out this page. Ahem). I just tamed this beauty in Winterspring and thought that some showing off is in order.
   Friends, there comes a time in every hunter's life when he/she is forced to make a critical decision: "Do I keep my loyal mountain lion who has been with me since level 23, gotten me through countless battlegrounds unharmed, tanked for me in dungeons, and peed on my armor to mark me as her territory? Or do I move on and find a different, more mature pet? An owl, perhaps? A symbol of wisdom and farsight?" But enough with the baloney. The owl. looks. epic! :) So to all you Alliance bastards out there (on Bonechewer, at least): when you see the blinding white light, that's Hedwig about to "nail yo ass!" (excuse the plagiarism)
   As a tribute to my beautiful Guinevere, the loyal mountain lion, I've decided to post a screenshot of her and Anowyn in the old days:

22 September, 2010

Music Video: Jack Johnson's "Upside Down"


Jack Johnson is a pretty cool guy, don't you think? A few years back when I heard he was doing the original score for the Curious George film, I was pleasantly surprised. The album is definitely worth a listen if you like chilled out surfing-style songs, even though it may be originally intended for kids. This particular video (props to Issan for reminding me how awesome Curious George is!) got a spot on MechanoChameleon because "Upside Down" is pretty much our favorite song off the Curious George soundtrack, and because it's fun to see Johnson "act a fool"! Bring your kids, watch the video, enjoy :)

Sunday Selection: Exit Summer

The absolutely stifling heat has finally given way to more acceptable (still pretty hot) weather conditions. Autumn has officially begun, and I can't wait to spend the winter under my warm, dry sheets while other people wake up on rainy mornings and go to their miserable jobs/courses. I'll admit that unemployment tends to put one in a tough social position; I mean, the group I get along with best these days is my action figure collection. Still, in spite of all its creepiness, being agoraphobic definitely has its perks. For example, right now I can name at least three things off the top of my head that you can do to make good (no, great!) use of your free time. In fact, that is exactly what I'm going to be doing for the remainder of this post. And the more free time, the better. :)

Watch: Adaptation. (2002)


Adaptation. is a film by Spike Jonze, the man behind Being John Malkovich. Charlie Kaufman (the man who wrote the screenplay) is one of MechanoChameleon's top 5 writers in film history. Kaufman is behind some of the most beautifully written movies including Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind. If you know nothing about Charlie Kaufman, Adaptation. is a perfect place for you to start. Not only does Nicolas Cage play Kaufman himself, but he also plays the writer of the film while he is writing the film itself. Not making much sense? Well, watch the film and you will know exactly what I'm talking about. We're certain that you will be pleasantly surprised with the unforeseen twists and the rather light humor that is dispersed throughout the film. It's a fun film all in all, but I think if you listen carefully, you just might learn something cool about orchids, or life :) Enjoy!

Listen: Let it Die (2004) - Feist

The beautiful and talented Leslie Feist has a voice that will make you pee your pants. Yes, yes, more Canadians. But this one is special! This particular 2004 album is an absolute hit here at the MechanoChameleon offices (recently moved from my grandmother's living room to a more appropriate workspace, with a larger TV screen, I might add) We highly recommend Let it Die for all of you out there who enjoy a spot of laid back, chilled out tunes. Here is a link to the dream-like music video of "Mushaboom", one of our favorite tracks on the album. For further listening, we recommend "Lonely, Lonely", "Inside Out" (an awesome Beegees cover), and of course the drowsy little tune the album is named after, "Let it Die".

Play: Retro Sabotage

Welcome to the 8-bit experience of Retro Sabotage. If you click the former link, it will take you to a website that is dedicated to making parodies of the popular Nintendo NES classics. Games including Super Mario, Pac Man, Pong, and Space Invaders, are parodied (in a rather skillful manner) and the player is allowed to do things that are usually forbidden in the original classic games. There are several games to choose from, and none of the parodies are too long or too boring, so worry not, you will probably be able to play them all! And since we're on the topic, here is a link to a version of the classic Duck Hunt game that will actually allow you to SHOOT THE DOG! Yay! :)

15 September, 2010

Sunday Selection: Bekhsous el Khlous

So what's the deal? Is it crazy season? Or maybe it's just my circle of "peeps". But honestly, everyone is going insane. Personally I think it's the unnecessary amounts of alcohol(ism) going around in the country. I mean, listen, I don't mind the stuff, but have you seen how much people drink? Apparently, the average Lebanese drinker will knock back about five beers before working up "a minor buzz" (yes, I actually went out for a change!) I think that's too much. Five beers! It's too much, right? I know. Beirut is floating on an ocean of "munkar". But then again there's all kinds of other crap that may lead one to potential marble-loss, more so in lovely Loubnan than in other places. Unemployment? Maybe, but not if you know how to plan right. Do we have a plan for you, unemployed person? Well, we might. Read on :)


Watch: Withnail & I (1987)


British comedy. That's all I have to say for this one really.
But no, seriously. Bruce Robinson is the writer and director of this week's film; a smooth-yet-sharp, wildly entertaining and (dare I say) moving comedy. Withnail (Richard E. Grant) has to be one of our favorite characters of all time. Imagine a man, a very worn out man of almost 30, drenched in English rain, reciting Hamlet with a bottle of '53 Margeaux ("best of the century") in hand. And now imagine the same man pointing a double-barreled shotgun into a river in the countryside in an attempt to procure dinner. The hilarious/beautiful/wild moments that I can recount from Withnail & I are countless. The dialogue is almost always rib-cracking and the characters (probably based on real people who were involved with Robinson in the sixties) are easily lovable (or despicable for that matter) My personal favorite is Danny (Ralph Brown) who claims, at some point during the film, that all hairdressers are in the employment of the government. Heavy G gives Withnail & I a 9.1 out of 10 "for being one of the funniest and wittiest comedies ever made, and containing the craziest array of characters, situations and one liners to grace a film screen!" Here is a link to the official Withnail & I drinking game. Oh dear.



Listen: So Jealous (2004) - Tegan and Sara

Tegan and Sara, MechanoChameleon's favorite musical twins. So Jealous is their fourth studio album and, we believe, their best. It's no myth that most of today's good music is coming to us straight from the Canadian territories, Tegan and Sara being our prime example. The album is interesting to say the least; it was released exactly 6 years ago today, and is a celebration of melodic neo-punk and quick yet catchy tunes. It's truly difficult to name just a few tracks as our favorites because the album is fantastic in its entirety. Here is a link to the music video of the first single off the album entitled "Walking With A Ghost". The track was later covered by The White Stripes, and the peculiar pair even released a (absolutely epic) music video.



Play: Cryptograma

Cryptograma is an online word puzzle by Alicia Ramirez. A cryptogram is a sentence or phrase in which every letter has been replaced with a certain symbol. Your job is to figure it out. Cryptograms are never really as difficult as they seem at first. This particular game is based on quotes, so note the source on the bottom of the page because it can help. Cryptograma has kept me actively engaged for hours, and I hope that it will bring you as much joy as it has brought the MechanoWriters in the past couple of weeks. Play it here!

07 September, 2010

Music Video: OK Go's "End Love"


This absolutely sock-knocking music video (thank you Stephanie!) by OK Go features a stop-motion sequence that will give you the impression that it's all been taken in one long shot, but in fact, the actual filming process must have taken at least a couple of days, as you can see. We enjoyed it so much that we decided it deserves a mention on the page. The video is available on the band's webpage for free download; part of the new open source approach that they have adopted with regards to their music. OK Go are known to have always been on top of the music video scene, having won a Grammy award for best music video in 2007. The song, entitled "End Love", is a classic OK Go feel good tune; two thumbs up to the video and the song both.
On a totally different note, if you're a fan of stop motion, take a look at this. Enjoy!

06 September, 2010

Sunday Selection: Where is Your Inner Elephant?

If you feel huge, overly emotional, or incapable of forgetting, don't fret. It's just your inner elephant. We all have one (I think), and what better way is there to connect with the oversized mammal that is lurking in your cerebral cortex than to feed it? Sadly, this process will not require massive amounts of peanuts. In fact, it does not involve ANY peanuts whatsoever (unless you want it to [unless you're allergic to peanuts, like my cousin]) Inner elephants are sustained with a strict diet of musical goodness, awesome films, and of course, hours upon hours of zombie-style video gamery. Does the phrase "video gamery" exist? Is it even a phrase, technically? I'm not sure about all that crap. But I do know a couple of good titles that you can check out over the week. Here are this week's picks, and until next Sunday, keep those elephants well-fed and out of harm's way ;)



Watch: eXistenZ (1999)

David Cronenberg, the man behind some of the greatest and most beautifully twisted films of the last 30 years, is often referred to as the "Baron of Blood". In eXistenZ, Cronenberg combines his warped sense of vision with a plotline that is made to blow your mind: the film is set in the future, and Jennifer Jason Leigh (who is by far the star of the film) is the creator of a new generation of VIDEO GAMES! In short, this film is MechanoChameleon's ultimate fantasy come true. Why is Jude Law holding a half-eaten chicken leg on the film poster? We'll let you find out for yourself. Heavy G gives this week's film a 9.2/10 for "beating The Matrix at its own game" and "summing up Cronenberg's pantheon of weirdness". Amen!
Watch the trailer here.







Listen: Pink Moon (1972) - Nick Drake

Despite being criminally underheard, Nick Drake is one of MechanoChameleon's official Musical Heroes. In the very short time that he spent on our beloved planet Earth, he managed to write and perform three of the most ear-gasmically beautiful albums that are at once sad and ingenious. Pink Moon was Drake's final work, and if you've heard some of his earlier songs, you will surely notice the ascending melancholy; while Drake's first and second album left room for hopeful sentiments now and then, Pink Moon (we feel) represents the beginning of Drake's decline, as it was released two years prior to his death, and holds within its folds a treasure of sorrowful tunes and simple yet captivating poetry. Our favorite track, and this was a difficult decision to make, is the three-minute gem entitled "Place To Be". Nick, wherever you are, we salute you.


Play: ICO (PS2)

Here at MechanoChameleon, we understand that you probably haven't had a steady job in over 15 years and can't afford that super expensive game console that your girlfriend's brother has but never uses, so we're here to supply you with the best PlayStation 2 recommendations until you can finally manage to get your hands on a Nintendo Wii. Have no fear, the world will never run out of good PS2 games, so even if you're still collecting 500 L.L. coins from the back of your aunt's living room couches in 2034 in the hope of buying the latest game console, we'll probably still have a few good games up our sleeve. Ico is this week's pick in video games; the setting is somewhere in the ancient far east. A group of warriors escort you into an eerie yet beautiful castle with the intention of leaving you there to die. And the adventure begins.
Graphically, Ico is flawless. The plotline, the characterization, and the intellegently contsructed gameplay are but a few of Ico's outstanding characteristics. Enjoy!