U2 Fans Buy What They Thought Was A U2 Vinyl, Get Tool Instead

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Sometimes, the universe has a wicked sense of humor. And for a band that force-fed their latest album upon an unsuspecting public’s i-Tunes accounts, it is perhaps that cosmic humor that caused the people who actually wanted the new U2 album to ironically not only not get the album, but to get a whole different record they didn’t want all together.


Some U2 fans who thought they were buying the vinyl release of “Songs of the Innocence” were surprised to find that there was an album they didn’t intend to buy sitting smugly in the place of “Songs” in the record sleeve. The record that was forced upon their purchase, and now their music library, was Tool’s “Opiate,” a record that sounds nothing like U2’s lackluster album.

No word yet if Bono will tell those who got the wrong album to simply trash it if they don’t want it.

Record Store Day 2015 And What It Means To Me (W/Spotify Playlist)

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record store day

For 10 years, I worked in record stores. First at a CD Warehouse, then the Electric Fetus — both in St. Cloud, and both are unfortunately no longer there. From 2000-2010, I was on the cusp of all sorts of new music, knew many in the area that not only had bands, but made their own CDs too. To say music has, and still does, make up a bulk of my interests would be an understatement. I love music, I love record stores and I love Record Store Day.

This year will be the first Record Store Day without an Electric Fetus in St. Cloud. Granted, since I moved away from there, I never made the trip back for the annual “holiday.” Partly because Record Store Day is geared toward collectors — people who will pay top dollar for a rare release on this particular day. It is mostly because I have lived three-hours away from my home town, first in Worthington and now in Bemidji. I still miss visiting my home town for the sole purpose of buying new music. While I buy my music now via Amazon, I miss the camaraderie of visiting, talking music and buying music from my old co-workers.

What I loved about Record Store Day was talking with strangers about our mutual interest in music, seeing live bands in a cramped record store and supporting said bands by buying their albums — if the band was any good. There is a cool atmosphere on this day that allows everyone to geek out on music. I love combing through bins of vinyl and CDs (I’m not a vinyl purist, and as much as I love Neil Young, I think his views on CD sound quality is, at best, overboard).

I miss record stores, but I have known for a long time that such brick and mortar record shops are on the way out. Unless it is in a larger city, the record store probably will not survive. In a digital age, where people stream music and listen to music digitally more and more, the record store is not essential to a lot of people these days. That’s just the way things change, whether we like it or not. I’d rather take music suggestions from someone at a record store than, say, a Spotify program that roots out similarities in artists I listen to and then makes suggestions. Granted, Spotify is usually more accurate in its suggestions to me than 99 percent of record store employees’ suggestions, but I’d rather deal with humans.

This year, though, Record Store Day will be celebrated in Bemidji. And there will be live music, like-minded music fans and used music for me to root through. I’m excited that Bemidji is taking an interest in this “holiday” that has been a part of my life for many years. And while there is no record store in town — the nearest from what I can tell is either Fargo or Duluth — the day will include live music, spinning of vinyl and music fans chatting. The stores may be dwindling, the spirit stays alive. Or something like that.

Here is a Spotify playlist of spot-on suggestions it has made for me (just kidding, just a collection of Minnesota-related music I enjoy).



And Here Is The Official ‘Batman v Superman’ Trailer

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Batman vs Superman

Sometimes there is no justice in this world. A world of darkness, despair and leaked Batman movie trailers.

Just when the world was heralding the glimpse of heroics in a galaxy far, far away, the criminal underworld released another, darker glimpse. This glimpse in the form of a shaky cellphone video shows a world paranoid of super human beings wreaking havoc upon them. A glimpse in which philosophies toward such beings are debated. A glimpse in which a statue of Superman is defaced with blood red graffiti declaring “False God.” A glimpse in which Ben Affleck stares angrily at a rubber bat-like cowl.

And now, due to that leaked glimpse, we now have an HD version. For the evils of society had gone too far and swift justice came, in the form of Warner Bros. just releasing a better version of that “Batman v Superman” trailer.

Here is the trailer:

Notice how dark it is, how moody everything seems to be? “Do you bleed?” we hear an even growlier-than-Bale-voiced Batman ask Superman. “You will.”

In all actuality, this trailer doesn’t really reveal much. We see the Batwing and Batmobile in some action, we see Batman walking in the shadows briefly. We hear Alfred talking to Bruce Wayne a little. And we hear Lex Luthor talking about devils do not come from under the ground, but from the sky. It looks very cool, and it certainly has both Batman and Superman in it.

From what we know, the events take place after “Man of Steel” and features an older Batman who has been around for a while now. You can see that from the gray in Bruce Wayne’s hair (similar to Bale’s in “Dark Knight Rises”).

Zack Snyder, whom did not seem pleased at all about the leak — which, frankly, probably would have been a lot bigger online if the “Star Wars” trailer wasn’t distracting us due to its awesomeness. So he kind of lucked out on the timing anyway.

Here is his Tweet:

So it still seems there will be incentive to see the IMAX trailer, which will feature extra shots and some swag.

The movie is set for release in March 25 of next year.

Here Is The New ‘Star Wars Episode VII’ Trailer

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Luke narrating? Vader’s burnt helmet? Lightsabers? Storm Troopers — even a crazy silver looking one? Han and Chewie?! The new trailer for “Force Awakens” has seemingly hit every nerve of mine for what I want in a Star Wars film. I’m so nerded out right now that my snark is subdued. So, let’s keep on watching this until I recover.

Zack Snyder Releases Teaser To ‘Batman v Superman’ Trailer

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Batman vs Superman

In an age where mere cinema trailers are not enough for the public, one man has decided to take the law into his own hands. Armed with a Twitter account, this film-vigilante has swept through the Internet, hiding in the darkest corners of the Web and has unleashed a preview to his upcoming film’s preview. For 20-seconds, feast your eyes upon what you might expect come Monday, April 20, when the official “Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice” trailer is released: Superhero costumes, intense music and camera filters that add extra darkness.

This creature of the night, who goes by the name of “Zack Synder,” has been teasing various images from the upcoming film that will be the first Batman movie since Christopher Nolan’s Dark Knight Trilogy wrapped up in 2012. It will also be the first time both Batman and Superman have graced the silver screen together. And judging from the clip revealed last year, this movie will probably borrow heavily from Frank Miller’s seminal graphic novel, “The Dark Knight Returns.”

Though the film will not be released until next year, the trailer set for Monday will be aired at various movie theaters across the country on IMAX screens, with a special introduction from this “Zack” fellow. Click on the hyper link above to see where the closest theater for you will be.

Anyway, here are the characters thus far:



supermanWonder Woman

wonderwomanAqua Man

aquamanMark Zuckerb- Lex Luthor

lex luthor






‘Daredevil’ Does Comic TV Adaptations Right

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Charlie Cox stars in the Netflix Original Series “Marvel’s Daredevil.”  Photo: Courtesy of Netflix © 2014 Netflix, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Charlie Cox stars in the Netflix Original Series “Marvel’s Daredevil.”
Photo: Courtesy of Netflix
© 2014 Netflix, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Marvel has brought their universe to a dark place

There was some trepidation when it was announced there would be another go at Marvel’s Daredevil — the 2003 Ben Affleck vehicle had left a bad taste in many people’s mouths — when Netflix said they were going to make a series of the character. It was also a little worrying that since, thus far, the Marvel Cinematic Universe has been more on the lighter side of things, that Daredevil would be thrown into a PG world, where he certainly does not belong.

Fear not, for Netflix’s “Daredevil” has certainly brought the MCU into a darker territory than it has ever visited. Which proves that Marvel is not afraid to show the dark and gritty when it does the character justice (unlike, say, the opposite when DC made a dark and gritty Superman because it worked for Batman. Come on, DC, primary colors are not always bad).

And the world in which Daredevil lives is not a pretty one. Set in Hell’s Kitchen in New York, the city is still recovering from the devastation brought upon it during the end of “The Avengers.” It is a city now being overtaken by crime — specifically human trafficking in the street world and shady business dealings in the white collar world. Enter lawyer Matt Murdock, blinded in his youth but can see that crime is destroying the city around him, and the street and corporate crimes are related. He fights for justice day and night, but differently depending on whether it is the sun or moon out. Clad in black, he brings street level justice to street level criminals.

And he does it in spades. “Daredevil” is also perhaps the most violent of anything from the MCU. There is no sugarcoating it, no little puns after he beats someone to a pulp. And he is not invincible either. He takes knife wounds, bruises and so forth.

Charlie Cox gives an impressive performance as Murdock, charming, funny and smart — and struggling with his demons. It is great how they combine his family’s past, his sense of justice and his faith into character rather quickly than dole out another long-winded origin story. No, this show jumps right into it, while sprinkling out how he came to be throughout the narrative.

“Daredevil” is also incredibly good at showing that there are bad guys in their universe that are complicated, scary and human. Sure, Thanos, Red Skull and Loki are bad, but you don’t sympathize with them, and you know they couldn’t really exists in the real world. Enter Vincent D’Onofrio (“Full Metal Jacket” and “Law &Order: Criminal Intent”), who gives a powerhouse performance as Wilson Fisk (aka Kingpin). Fisk is believable (minus the no paper trail of his existence in the show’s reality, he’s off the grid) as a crime boss and is frightening in his revenge (when he beat that Russian to death with a car door was disturbing). You also sense his loneliness is a dark and corrupted world he has created around him (a lot of that is on D’Onofrio’s performance giving Frisk a sense of humanity).

By and large, “Daredevil” is another feather in the cap for both Marvel and Netflix. It is the first part of a series of shows for the streaming giant that will lead up to “The Defenders,” a street-level superhero ensemble similar to “The Avengers.” It adds to the MCU much better than, say, “Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.” and “Agent Carter” in that we actually get not only a superhero in this show, but an interesting set of characters (“Carter,” for its part, fared much better than “Agents”).

All 13 episodes are currently streaming on Netflix.

MTV Is Bringing Back ‘Celebrity Deathmatch’

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One of the many hypothetical questions nobody raised that was answered via "Celebrity Deathmatch:" Who would win in a fight, Hanson or the Spice Girls?

One of the many hypothetical questions nobody raised that was answered via “Celebrity Deathmatch:” Who would win in a fight, Hanson or the Spice Girls?

For more than 25 years, MTV has seemingly gone out of its way to eliminate just about everything the “M” in their name stands for. So when it came time to fill a time slot on MTV2, the question apparently was not “hey, should we maybe put music videos there?” but “what show can we dig up, and bring back into the fold?” A show that could, perhaps, play upon nostalgia a bit? And when it was realized that they had already brought “Beavis and Butt-Head” back once, and Chris Hardwick is already doing a game show that is not “Singled Out” on a different network, their options where limited. “What about ‘Celebrity Deathmatch,'” someone probably asked. Indeed, what about “Celebrity Deathmatch?”

And that question was answered. MTV has decided to revive their hit claymation-meets-WWE program, “Celebrity Deathmatch” eight years after it was taken off the air. For Millennials, it was a venue that finally settled hypothetical arguments no sane people had about who would win in a fight: Kid Rock or Eminem, Dave Grohl or Courtney Love, Jack Black or Jack White, the list goes on.

The series creator, Eric Fogel, will return for the series, and it promises to be —  and this is a word many dread — reimagined in a social media world. So be prepared for every weekly Twitter beef to be brought to life via clay and feature lethal farts. Because that’s totally something “Celebrity Deathmatch” would do.

Here Is The New Griswold Family From The New ‘Vacation’ Movie

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It seems that much like Clark Griswold ignoring the moose out front of Wally World telling him the park is closed, Hollywood can’t seem to accept that the “Vacation” movies should finally call it a day. No, Hollywood says while waving a B.B. gun maniacally in our direction, trying to convince us it’s a Magnum P.I. “Don’t tempt me. I could put an eye out with this thing,” they add as they force the franchise to reopen after a hellish ride that was “Christmas Vacation 2″ and “Vegas Vacation.”

The new “Vacation” film is technically not a reboot — seeing that the original run had a different Rusty and Audrey for no apparent reason in each film, reboots are not needed in this franchise — and will star Ed Helms as an adult Rusty, with Chevy Chase and Beverly D’Angelo reprising their roles as Clark and Ellen Griswold. Christina Applegate will play Rusty’s wife, Debbie. No word yet if Randy Quaid will show up and make everyone feel really uncomfortable with his conspiracy theories of being hunted down by “star whackers.”

The film follows Rusty reliving his road trip to Wally World from his youth, the trip when his father lost all touch with reality and forced John Candy on roller coaster rides at gun point. A vacation that would scar most others, but not a Griswold apparently.

The new “Vacation” movie is set to be released this summer.

Here Is A Teaser Of Jared Leto As The Joker

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Much in the same tradition in 2007-08 when Christopher Nolan was teasing images of Heath Ledger’s take on the iconic Batman villain — The Joker — director of the upcoming DC comic adaptation of “The Suicide Squad” David Ayer has teased an image of Jared Leto’s take on the Clown Prince of Crime.

This is an homage to the classic graphic novel, “The Killing Joke.” Considered by many as the ultimate Batman vs. Joker story.

batman-the-killing-jokeThis is after the director tweeted a photo of the rest of the cast, of which Leto was suspiciously missing (he’s wrapping up a tour with his band).

Of course, we can anticipate the Internet to respond rationally, as it has before, when film adaptations of their favorite comic books hit the big screen (most people tend to forget how angry fans where when Ledger was cast as the Joker, and before that when Michael Keaton was cast as Batman in the late 80s).

This is also a part of DC’s new cinematic universe, and also the first time the Joker has appeared on the big screen outside a Batman film. Between Marvel’s Cinematic Universe and DC’s Cinematic Universe, there are more than 20 superhero films set between now and 2020. That’s about four superhero films a year.

Leto has big shoes to fill, as besides Ledger the character was also portrayed by Jack Nicholson in the 80s and Ceaser Romero in the 60s TV series. Mark Hamil has voiced the character in various Batman projects, including the animated series.

“The Suicide Squad” is set for the summer of 2016, following the release of “Batman v Superman” in May.


Marilyn Manson Was Punched In The Face At A Denny’s In Canada

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While you may have been sitting in a candle-lit room — dressed in black, reading Edgar Allan Poe and listening to the haunting vocals of the Joy Division — Marilyn Manson has once again one-upped your disappoint-your-parents credentials in an act that is so ridiculous that you might as well wash all that black mascara off and bleach your hair. Because you will probably never top this moment of horror embarrassment.

In a situation where the headline pretty much sums the story up, the shock rocker was punched in the face at a Denny’s in Canada. That’s right. Punched in the face. At a Denny’s — in Canada. It is perhaps the most shocking thing Manson has been involved in since the late 90s. It’s almost a riddle wrapped in an enigma at this point.

After performing a show in Alberta, Canada, the 46-year-old musician went to a Denny’s — perhaps to indulge in the deadly sin of gluttony with a Grand Slamwich. There is no report on what devilishly delicious menu items he may have obscenely consumed, but one thing seems for sure, he got punched in the face by a patron during this debauched evening of rock music and breakfast foods.

According to TMZ — a media source that many believe to be evil incarnate — the patron claims to have punched the musician after a brief argument that resulted in Manson allegedly calling the man’s girlfriend a rude name. Manson claims he was sucker punched while signing autographs and taking pictures with fans, and plans to sue his attacker. A witness has corroborated Manson’s version of events.

Denny’s, for its part, has spoken out on the situation: