» Full Dark, No Stars - Stephen King's new novella questions mankind's ability to trust others.
[02.21.2011 by Bridget Doyle]


 » The Top 30 Albums of 2010 - Fashionably, fabulously late, our favorite music (and believe me, there was a LOT) of 2010, the year that some have called the best year for music ever. And only some of those fools work here. Plenty of usual suspects, lots of ties and a few surprises that I won't spoil, including our unexpected #1.
[12.24.2010 by The LAS Staff]


 » Live: Surfer Blood/The Drums at Lincoln Hall, Chicago, IL - Remember when Weezer used to put together records that you could sing along to and rock out to? That's what Surfer Blood's show was like!
[11.04.2010 by Cory Tendering]

Music Reviews

Screaming Females - Castle Talk
»Screaming Females
Castle Talk
Don Giovanni
Trent Reznor & Atticus Ross - The Social Network [Original Soundtrack]
»Trent Reznor & Atticus Ross
The Social Network [Original Soundtrack]
The Null Corporation
Deerhunter - Halcyon Digest
Halcyon Digest
No Age - Everything in Between
»No Age
Everything in Between
Sub Pop
Robyn - Body Talk Pt. 1/ Body Talk Pt. 2
Body Talk Pt. 1/ Body Talk Pt. 2
The Walkmen - Lisbon
»The Walkmen
Fat Possum

December 18, 2008
We've done the real Kanye West vs. 50 Cent media beef, the imaginary PJ Harvey vs. Nellie McKay lady beef, a weird old-v-new matchup of Mike Doughty vs. Nick Lowe, a celebration of Black Music For White America with TVOTR vs. The Knux. But it's never enough. Let's have a dance war.


What Does It All Mean?
Illegal Art
Rating: 8.5/10 ?


Girl Talk
Feed the Animals
Illegal Art
Rating: 9.3/10 ?


Like rap, the mash-up probably won't go away. Many think it's a trend, but the demand is too high for it to stop now. And unlike other trends, this new trend revolves around combining old trends. Although the trend is not altogether new either. Evolution Control Committee's classic mix of Public Enemy and Herb Alpert was created before mp3 technology, and Steve Stein and partner Doug DeFranco were cutting tracks together not long after Grandmaster Flash had only figured out the wheels of steel himself. Only time knows what the future holds for this is-it-a-genre, but two masters of mashing have got the past and present locked up.

Double Dee and Steinski's tracks "The Payoff Mix" and "Lesson Two" have gathered lots of ink about their importance as 80s dance bootlegs, with spoken samples snipped from TV shows, instructional tapes and a James Brown riff, and there's more where that came from on Steinski's brilliant anthology What Does It All Mean?, comprising two discs of perpetually out-of-print material the good folks at Illegal Art have thrust back out again in a definitive package with beautiful liner notes. Even deeper than the dance stuff is Steinski's oddly emotional collage skills, arranging news reports and tapes from the JFK assassination and 9/11 to invoke history and black humor. The beat reclaims enough shifty funk that it's workable in the background, though it's ambitious for close listening and certainly not all-the-time stuff, even the dancing. But it's heavy and clever at the same time, like one on each deck.

Greg Gillis should be so artistic. I didn't have any great expectations from a guy whose deal is something I once claimed to be able to do myself. I'll listen back to Night Ripper, but I'm secure in my view that this deepening one-trick pony has never made a record as good as Feed the Animals, which has a lovely title in an AC/DC you-want-blood-you-got-it way. Same deal, new mash-ups. But these are less name-that-tune and more tune-that-rap, and the samples are more practical and melodic and they last a little longer, just enough this time to actually get your fill. Miracles include the best "Since U Been Gone" I've ever heard (braided with Nine Inch Nails), the best "Jessie's Girl" I've ever heard (Chipmunked: perfect), the only "Born Slippy" I've ever needed, M.I.A.'s toneless warble tuning itself to the Cranberries, and my favorite musical moment of '08: "Whoomp! There It is" over the celebratory, Celtic guitar break from Big Country's "In a Big Country." Thanks for the emphasis on palm-muted 80s guitar, the previously unknown correlation between "Ghetto Supastar" and Yo La Tengo, and the funeral UGK's late Pimp C deserves... over Journey.

Illegal Art birthed both of these releases this year. Same teams, so no winners, except us.

SEE ALSO: www.steinski.com
SEE ALSO: www.girl-talk.net
SEE ALSO: www.illegalart.net
SEE ALSO: www.lostatsea.net/feature.phtml?fid=2340234984815aa984d890

Dan Weiss
Dan Weiss is the music editor for LAS. Formerly an editorial intern at CMJ and creator of the now defunct What was It Anyway?, his work has appeared in Village Voice, Pitchfork, Philadelphia Inquirer, Stylus and Crawdaddy among others. He resides in Brooklyn where he enjoys questionable lifestyle choices and loud guitars.

See other articles by Dan Weiss.



If you'd like to help spread the word about LAS, or simply want to outfit yourself with some adhesive coolness, our 4" circle LAS stickers are sure to hit the spot, and here is how to get them:

--> Send an with $2 in PayPal funds to cover postage. Don't worry, we'll load you up with enough to cover your town. Then just be patient. They will arrive soon.


LAS has staff and freelance writers spread across North and South America, Europe, and a few in Southeast Asia as well. As such, we have no central mailing adress for unsolicited promotional material. If you are interested in having your project considered for coverage, please contact us before sending any promotional materials - save yourself time and postage!