Monday, March 31, 2008

hempbomb part 2.

I guess I was audible to the audience (I do the really treble-y lead guitar stuff... and the bridge solo...)... I couldn't tell onstage.

Top website hits of the week.

Got the email below from the editor and site creator of The list went up to 40, but what does it matter? When you're sitting at number 1... ain't nothing gonna break my stride.

Of course, it might have been because I volunteered to write a quick review for one of the biggest releases of the first quarter of 2008, but still...

* * * * *

Happy Monday,

Herewith, this week's most popular pages, for your delectation.

I think it's a first that the entire top 10 consists of album reviews.

Congrats to Justin - your first chart topper with Gnarls Barkley.

[Format: replace the first three words with "" to read them... for example:]

1. Music - Reviews - Albums - /albums/gnarls-barkley-2_0308.htm
2. Music - Reviews - Albums - /albums/guillemots-3_0208.htm
3. Music - Reviews - Albums - /albums/counting-crows_0308.htm
4. Music - Reviews - Albums - /albums/moby-3_0308.htm
5. Music - Reviews - Albums - /albums/raconteurs-2_0308.htm
6. Music - Reviews - Albums - /albums/foals_0308.htm
7. Music - Reviews - Albums - /albums/elbow-4_0308.htm
8. Music - Reviews - Albums - /albums/yeasayer_0308.htm
9. Music - Reviews - Albums - /albums/mystery-jets-2_0308.htm
10. Music - Reviews - Albums - /albums/long-blondes-2_0308.htm

11. Music - Reviews - Albums - /albums/joy-division_0308.htm
12. Classical - Reviews - Opera - /opera/roh-carmen-3_0308.htm
13. Music - Reviews - Albums - /albums/whip_0308.htm
14. Music - Features - /music/features/shoegaze_0807.htm
15. Music - Reviews - Albums - /albums/hercules-and-love-affair_0308.htm
16. Music - Reviews - Albums - /albums/we-are-scientists-3_0308.htm
17. Music - Interviews - /interviews/nick-cave_0308.htm
18. Music - Reviews - Albums - /albums/bryan-adams_0308.htm
19. Music - Interviews - /interviews/mark-e-smith_0308.htm
20. Music - Interviews - /interviews/muse_0706.htm


Bombardiers played Hempfest 2008 at the Rez on Sunday. It was cool because they had a big stage set up in front of the lake. But the soundcheck went by really quickly and even though I could hear most everything onstage, I'm not sure how the audience heard things. And although we thought the whole thing was supposed to be in support of hemp as a product, it turned out to be in support of something else (big surprise)...

Thanks to Matt C for posting the pics, and Bombardiers for rocking out. Also, I was wearing this shirt that I made especially for the performance --

Thursday, March 27, 2008


Subject: Complaint - Be Your Own Pet Censoring.
Date: 27 March 2008

To Whom It May Concern,

I recently read a news update involving punk band Be Your Own Pet from Nashville, TN, a group that is distributed by Universal through its U.S. label, Ecstatic Peace. The news update (found here: pitchforkmedia) concerned a last-minute censorship of the band's recent album release "Get Awkward" by Universal through the exclusion of three songs ("Black Hole," "Becky," and "Blow Yr Mind") from its Stateside release.

I received an advance copy of the U.K. version of "Get Awkward" for review purposes, and I found no sentiment worthy of censoring in these songs in particular. Although Universal, as the distributor, may hold equal say about what gets released in the agreement with Ecstatic Peace (I have no way of knowing the details), this seems like a very odd, and very unprofessional way of handling business, an issue I addressed in my written review of the album.

Even if that were a way of conducting professional business, it seems that these songs were arbitrarily targeted. I understand what the offending lyrics may be in each song, but I don't understand why Universal censored this artist -- if you will notice, whatever 'violent' implications certain lyrics may hold are immediately offset by other, inoffensive, even jocular lyrics. For example, "We'll wait with knives after class" on "Becky" is offset by cutesy couplets like "I don't regret what I've done / 'cause in the end it was fun" and the whole chanting section of "We don't like Becky anymore". Anyone who takes these lyrics seriously shouldn't be listening to the song or album in the first place -- the rest of the album is laden with curses and weird statements that parents should be in charge of monitoring.

Parents, not labels, should filter music and media through to their children. Useless censorship like this (especially in the era of the Internet, where this news story will break big and just inspire everyone to download these omissions anyway) is downright asinine.


Justin de la Cruz

Monday, March 24, 2008


"The Helikopter-Streichquartett is one of Karlheinz Stockhausen's best-known pieces, and one of the most complex to perform. It involves a string quartet, four helicopters with pilots..." (source)

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

How many was that?
LogoThere are
people with my name
in the U.S.A.

How many have your name?


A bit of bragging:

A Google of my name, "Justin de la Cruz", now brings up my writer profile as #1, my really old FSView writer profile as #3, and still on the first page of results -- my LinkedIN profile as well as my honors thesis (even though it is no longer hosted at the link provided).


The second page of results holds this Blog, my old band's myspace, and an obscure credit I received for being a DIS helper in my Psychology lab... four years ago.

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Spinning your wheels.

I got to a dark office this morning only to release my co-worker was not coming in. I check the phone messages:

*Tuesday, March 11 at 9:09 p.m.*

"Hi Justin,

I'm just letting you know that my truck got stuck in the mud and it will take a long time to get it out tomorrow, because it's still really dark and raining here right now. So I'll see you on Thursday."

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Things To Hate.

Top Things I Should Continue To Remember To Hate

  • Band websites that start on a homepage, have a "CLICK HERE" and then go to a pop-up Flash page. Cut that crap out.
  • The word "seersucker".
  • Having nothing to do at work.
  • Being tired.
  • Having too much stuff to do at work.
  • Having people ask me what I'm doing for Spring Break. (Hint: You're looking at it now.)
  • Debutantes.
  • Getting hassled for not liking sports.
  • Getting hassled for liking Lightning Bolt.
  • Getting asked about "What I'm Going To Do With My Degrees".
  • Strangers calling me by name when I don't know their names.
  • Being called "Jason" in person and via email despite: a nameplate on my desk; my name next to the subject on all my outgoing emails; me writing my name at the bottom of all my emails; my signature placed below that automatically in all my emails.
  • Ads.
  • Money.
  • Making weak lists.


Monday, March 10, 2008

Fire Drill At Work?

or a dumb way to spend 10 minutes doing nothing at a job where you already do nothing?

What are we, in sixth grade?

Reasons a fire drill was not appropriate:

*It's spring break. There are 15 people in this building. They all work here. On a normal school day, there would be at least 100 people in this building.
*Your fire alarm said "Lobby Walk Test," instead of "FIRE! FIRE! FIRE! LEAVE BEFORE YOU BURN!"
*If this were a real fire alarm, I would not waste time locking the office and forwarding the phone calls and locking my computer. I would still wait for my CD to come out of my computer's drive, though, and still pack up everything I had.
*If this were a real fire alarm, the four guys cleaning the outside windows on the fifth floor of the building would have been screwed.

When I was in elementary school, I always thought about if we mistook the fire alarm for the tornado alarm, or vice versa, we'd all be screwed.

This also deserves mention of the new building at high school. During the first year of its opening, the new building had a fire alarm go off at least once a week. It was routine. Even if it was on for 15 minutes, we would all go about our normal business, and we wouldn't even pay attention when the voice came on to say "Please disregard the fire alarm..."

Spring Break 2008

consists of me sitting in an office by myself because Julie has Mondays off, my boss has hives (but not T.H.E. H.I.V.E.S.), and other staff members are in other offices.

This means I can

listen to:

       Arctic Monkeys
              The Smiths
                     Anything at all, really.

look at:

       Music Websites
              The New York Times (Website)
                     Anything at all, really (within reason).

       But none of that
                     is really any different
                                   from any other day