Dear readers,

I’ve come to the hard decision that it’s time to put Steve Cross Loves Music and Science to rest. Don’t worry, I still love music and science! I just don’t have time to blog about it anymore. The natural progression of life, relationships, commitments, etc… has forced me to re-organize priorities. That’s not a bad thing, it just means that blogging has to take a backseat to more important things. So, this is the end of this blog! I’ll keep the domain for the foreseeable future, and everything will remain archived as-is. Everything has a a life cycle, and this blog has reached the end.

This is not the end of me sharing this type of content on the internet, however! I do intend to share more science articles, links, tidbits, etc… on my Facebook and Twitter feeds, so follow me there. This will allow me to still share my interests and love of music & science with whomever is willing to listen. I’m also on Instagram, so follow me there for more visual content.

I also have other blog ideas that I’ve been milling around for a while, but I’m keeping that under wraps until I officially decide what I’m doing. If and when that comes to fruition, it will be made public via my Twitter and Facebook.

Whether you’ve just started following me or have been for many years, I hope you learned something, gained something, or otherwise benefited from this blog!

Peace out.

-Steve

Next Big Hangover. Next Binge Nashville. I’ve heard it all. But it’s over. It was awesome and everyone had a blast, but it’s time to move on with the regular Nashville rock and roll grind. Going out and seeing another show is probably not high on your list of things to do tonight, but if there was ever a lineup capable of changing that sentiment, it’s the Dixie Downturn 8 off 8th tonight at Mercy Lounge.

What’s Dixie Downturn? Oh, they’re just the greatest blog in the universe. Well, 2nd greatest blog… obviously this blog is the greatest in the universe. J/K. Seriously though, they are brand-spankin’ new and they are already rocking my world, mainly because they said this about my band Powerbrrrd:

Powerbrrrd are three goofy mofos that play sloppy, infectious rock ‘n’ roll music in the vein of Superchunk and Guided by Voices. They also have a video that reenacts the opening sequence from The Adventures of Pete and Pete. They are obviously in the running for greatest band in the universe for that fact alone.

But also because they put together this utterly amazing lineup for an 8 off 8th tonight- Spanish Candles, Powerbrrrd, Action!, Diarrhea Planet, Heartbeater, Fake Brad, Big Surr, and one more that I haven’t heard about yet. All these bands are bands that we love to play with and who love us, and now we love DD, who also loves us, and and and there’s just so much love.

Massive love aside, keep an eye on Dixie Downturn y’all- they’re all about the free shit, and that’s alright with me. Here’s a link to their post about tonight, and here’s a link to the facebook event. As always, it’s FREE, 21+, and there are $2.50 Yuenglings.

There’s been a lot of buzz lately about possible evidence of the elusive Higgs Boson, the so-called “God particle” being discovered at Fermilab’s Tevatron collider. Apparently some of the physicists have entertained the idea that an unexpected result from a recent particle collision experiment might possibly be evidence of the Higgs Boson, while others dismiss the idea. So, don’t go thinking that we’ve finally found the Higgs Boson (and not even at the LHC nonetheless) just yet. An official statement on the matter has not been released yet, and we have no clue what they found until that happens. So everyone just chill out for a minute until some official findings are released. All we know for sure now is there was an “unexpected result.” (Via Discovery News)

Now I must simply share a few things I’ve run across the past couple of days that are simply awesome:

What the Fuck Should I Make for Dinner? Perfect for those “I don’t know what I want, what do you want?” times.

-Yazoo Brewing Co. may be switching to cans, but they want your input first. Weigh all the options before making your choice.

-Sam Kean of Slate is blogging the entire periodic table of elements. Nerd-out!

-And if this doesn’t make your day (and even week) infinitely better, then you are beyond help:

Infinity Cat staples Heavy Cream and Jeff the Brotherhood both got some serious love yesterday on Brooklyn Vegan. They’re about to embark on a tour together, and will be invading NYC next weekend, though oddly they’re not actually on any of the NYC bills together. Coincidentally I’ll be in NYC visiting my girlfriend who is currently there for a month taking a class at SVA. We’ll probably drop by one of those shows and surprise them. It seems like NYC has had a bit of a crush on Nashville’s rock scene, especially since Be Your Own Pet exposed them to the Infinity Cat roster. Awesome.

If you’ve been under a rock, you may not have heard about Columbia, TN’s real-life spandex-clad superhero “The Viper,” but some national media outlets have taken notice. The most interesting place this story popped up is on the sci-fi/tv/nerd blog i09. The part I don’t really get is why the hell you can’t wear a mask in public in Columbia. Seriously? It seems like the local lawmakers got bored and decided to find an excuse to arrest everyone on Halloween…

This has to be one of the best posts in Hipster Runoff history…

More science posts coming soon, I promise…

I’ve known Brock Sharp for quite a while now, ever since he was involved with Vacant Cage Records back in the mid 2000’s. They folded back in ’07 and since then he’s been doing all sorts of random music-related things, including starting the Dig For Fire Agency with me. Just last week he was offered the opportunity to take over the music blog Rock Sellout. He agreed, and now it’s up and running again under his command. So go check it out. I may even end up contributing to it some in the future.

Tonight Those Darlins will be joining the Dexateens, the Rustlanders, and Band of Heathens at Mercy Lounge for an Americana Music Awards showcase. They’ll also be joined by a super-secret special guest, and based on the Nashville Cream’s hints and the AMA website, I’m pretty sure it’ll be John Fogerty.

In case you’ve been under a rock the past few days, the long-rumored Pavement reunion is definitely, absolutely, 100% happening. I knew there was something to that 5 Spot almost-reunion-show for Bob N.’s wedding. Maybe they’ll either A) play in Nashville, or B) play at SXSW next year. Or both?

It should be no secret that I’m the world’s biggest Mythbusters fan. That’s why I’m very excited about some of the topics covered in the upcoming season, which debuts October 7th. Can you build a sailboat out of duct tape? Or a cannon? Does a muddy car really get better gas mileage than a clean one? (WTF?) And the one I’m most interested in: does having multiple drinks with various liquors give you a worse hangover than sticking to one liquor all night? If the episode tackling that one is half as funny as the one testing other alcohol/sobriety rumors, then it’s gonna probably end up being one of my fav episodes of all time. CAN’T. WAIT. (Via Gizmodo)

I’ll leave you today with this video containing various drunken antics and a few performance clips from Caitlin Rose’s trip to the Monolith Festival at Red Rocks, CO. Wish I could’ve gone!

Getting caught up on life after a week-long vacation is quite a task, and unfortunately this blog has been low on the list of things on which to get caught up.

I’ll have a link to some photos from Yellowstone, South Dakota, and all the other cool western places we visited soon. Again, editing these photos is not at the top of my priority list. I have lots of work stuff at Vandy this week so I won’t have the usual few minutes of spare time to browse my RSS feeds.

That being said… here are some great things that have been happening with the awesome Nashville music scene lately. You’ve probably already seen most of these, especially if you read Nashville Cream, but these tidbits deserve posting!

My favorite band from our fine Music City, The Features, were Paste Magazine‘s band of the week this week. Ever since they signed to Kings of Leon imprint Bug Music, they’ve been popping up all over the national radar. For a band that has been making such amazing music for so many years, it feels incredibly good to see them getting some of the recognition they deserve. In my opinion they should be inducted into the Rock ‘n Roll Hall of Fame, and sell millions of records and tour the world opening for Paul McCartney, but that’s just the superfan coming out in me. (Via Nashville Cream)

Itll make you cream.

It'll make you cream.

In other Cream news, the blog we all love so dearly for its cantankerous commentators is turning 3 years old this coming weekend. As they’ve done the past 2 years, they’re celebrating with a superb show at the Mercy Lounge this saturday. Headlining will be none other than The Features, and supporting acts will be Kindercastle and The Billy Goats. I will be there doing a photobooth as I’ve at the past two. It costs $5, which is really a steal considering the lineup and all the free stuff and prizes you can enter to win. Seriously, it’s the only place to be this Saturday!

Ok, so I’ve raved and raved about The Features, but it’s well-deserved. The final bit of Features awesomeness comes from our great friends at Lake Fever Productions and Tugboat Productions, who have been churning out great videos of their live sessions called Lake Fever Sessions. So far they’ve done a ton of great videos of artists both local and national, including Cursive, The Privates, Those Darlins, and many more. Here’s a personal fave, the 1-2 punch of Whatever Gets You By/The Drawing Board. Even more exciting is that they have another one in the can to be released later this fall. It’s a version of their classic show-closer “Thursday” featuring gang vocals by a number of local musicians/etc… These videos really reminded me why I love this band so much. Something about the way it was filmed, the intimacy of the live recording, and the unusually flowery decor just really hit the spot.

The most important thing for you to do/know about today is my 8 off 8th tonight. It’s the 3rd one I’ve done and I sincerely hope that if you’re in the Nashville area, you’ll come out tonight and check out these great bands. The flyer was designed by the awesome Cara Charlton. Click on each band to learn more about them. The Cream also gave me a shout-out.

Dixie Whiskey
Cody Blaine & the Whole Fam Damnly
The Comfies
Joel J. Dahl
Tristen
Pineapple Explode
Overzealous
Jug Huggers

While you’re at the Cream, please do checkout my photos from the Green Day show Friday. Those haven’t lost their touch and if the rest of the show was as awesome as the first 2 songs, then I’m really sad that I couldn’t stay for the whole thing. They made those 2 songs into a 20 minute spectacle that had me running around chasing BJA quite a bit, and I loved every minute of it.

In some other local news:

Nashvillest got voted best local blog in the Toast of Music City awards. Way to go!

Some local dudes started a beer review blog a year or so ago, and while they’ve been dormant for a few months, they’re back in business. Check out the Beer School Blog. They’ll try just about any beer and give it a score. They also talk about the bar itself sometimes, so if you like beer and want to find a new beer to check out, have a look through their archives.

Speaking of beer, I’m officially going to start brewing my own beer. After I get back from my vacation next week, I plan to hit up the two places I know of in town that sell brewing ingredients, and I’m gonna give it a try. I’ve found myself getting increasingly more interested in the multitude of beer styles so as I brew, I’m also going to expand my palette and try some of the more obscure styles out there, such as a Rauchbier, Biere de Garde, or Faro.

This past weekend we managed to see both Moon and 500 Days of Summer. I thoroughly enjoyed them both. Here’s a quick blurb on each-

500 Days of Summer: 6.5 out 0f 10. By all means go see this movie. I’m no film critic but here’s my two cents… It’s really just another one of those indie-cutesy-warm-fuzzy romantic movies, with a bittersweet twist. The acting is great- Zooey Deschanel is as beautiful as ever, and is the perfect fit for her character, as is Joseph Gordon-Levitt. I guess it’s a bit of guilty pleasure, because there have been many films of this variety to come out in the last few years and their target demographic is basically me. But as I said, there’s a bittersweet twist. They do a great job of really making you root for Joseph Gordon-Levitt’s character throughout, and the tension is finally resolved, just not in the way most movies resolve it.

Moon: 7.5 our of 10. For a directorial debut, this is one heck of a film. And visually, it’s quite remarkable considering the budget. I never though a movie with so few characters could be so great. David Bowie’s son Duncan Jones deserves some sort of award for this one. The ending seemed a bit rushed to me, and it made me wish for more of a build-up somehow, but overall it came together well. Again, I am not by any means a film critic, so these are just my humble opinions.

Now, don’t forget to come to my 8 off 8th tonight! But before you do that, feast your eyes on this awesome poster by Monkey Ink Design for the upcoming Drive By Truckers/Glossary show at Cannery Ballroom.

Credit: Pete Souza/official White House flickr photostream

Credit: Pete Souza/official White House flickr photostream

Obama officially announced former astronaut Charles Bolden as his pick for the new NASA Chief Administrator. FINALLY! I’m just glad they now have a clear idea of who’s in charge, and soon will have a clear direction as well.

In case you’re under a rock, Obama also announced Sonia Sotomayer as his pick for the vacant U.S. Supreme Court Justice seat.

Space Shuttle Atlantis landed Sunday at Edwards Air Force Base in California after 3 scrubbed attempts to land at Cape Canaveral. The orbiter will spend a week there being prepped for the piggy-back ride on top of a modified Boeing 747 to take it back to Florida.

With the scheduled Soyuz Rocket launch tomorrow at 6:34AM, the International Space Station will have a full crew of 6 personell for the first time ever. Coincidentally, this also marks the first time that representatives from all 5 agencies involved with the ISS have been aboard it at the same time. Those agencies are NASA, the Canadian Space Agency (CSA), the European Space Agency (ESA), the Russian Federal Space Agency (Roscosmos), and the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA).

Ok, enough space stuff already… we’ll stick to science, though, because I found lot of good science news in my reader today, and not much else worth posting.

The National Ignition Facilily (NIF) in California is about to create a tiny man-made star with deuterium, tritium, and one big-ass laser. This has to be one of the coolest-sounding descriptions I’ve ever seen. In all honesty, though, it’s not really a star. But they will create nuclear fusion, the process that occurs at the core of stars, on a very tiny scale for a fraction of a second. This is just one small step toward the solution to all of earth’s energy problems. Not only will this device help solve energy problems, it will also help physicists study what happens when a star explodes, and also the inner-workings of any nuclear explosion. Back to the energy issue, though. If we can figure out a way to contain a sustained fusion reaction, and make it yield more energy than is required to create and contain it, then humans will have solved our energy crisis. As far as I can tell, there’s no Dr. Octavius employed at the NIF, thank goodness…

Stephen Colbert interviewed Seth Shostak on The Colbert Report. Shostak is the Senior Astronomer at the SETI Institute. (SETI stands for the Search for Extra-Terrestrial Intelligence.) Watch it on Colbert Nation.

Ok I have to post something not-so-serious now- Hurley has a blog! Seriously, it’s not the most interesting thing I’ve seen but it’s still way-cool to read about his real life. Besides, who doesn’t love Hurley?

Click image to see bigger version

This has been popping up in a few places around the interwebs for a couple days now, and I should’ve posted about it earlier, but I’ve fallen victim t0 post-SXSW sickness and laziness. A team of physicists have discovered a brand new subatomic particle, which they’re calling “Y(4140).” Ironically this particle was not discovered at the Large Hadron Collider, which is still not operational due to repairs from the catastrophic helium leak last fall; it was discovered at Fermilab, right here in the USA. This new information will be valuable in future mathematical models of the universe, as well as in the experiments conducted at the LHC later this year. You’d think they could come up with a cooler name for a completely new type of subatomic particle… something like “megaquark” or “quarktron.” Lazerquark…

The space shuttle undocked from the ISS yesterday and did a fly-around, capturing the first images of the fully symmetrical, full-length ISS. Universe Today has the space porn, including video of part of the fly-around.

According to Space.com, NASA has decided to go ahead with the Hubble repair mission, despite the increased risk of debris impact due to the satellite collision on Feb. 10th. I’m glad, but kinda scared for the crew. The danger is heightened by the fact that they won’t have the ISS as a lifeboat. Instead, NASA will have Space Shuttle Endeavour on a different pad, ready to launch and be used as a lifeboat should Atlantis be damaged.

Several different time-lapse videos of plants growing. These things are always fun to watch. Via kottke.org.

This has been showing up on almost every blog I read, but it’s definitely worth posting- the first trailers for the Spike Jonze-directed, Arcade Fire-loaded, live-action version of Where the Wild Things Are has been posted. The best place to view it is on apple.com. They have gorgeous HD versions that are true eye candy.

Camera Obscura @ SXSW 2009 Photo: Steve Cross

Camera Obscura @ SXSW 2009 Photo: Steve Cross

I was quite pleased yesterday to find out that Camera Obscura will be kicking off their north American tour in Nashville at the Mercy Lounge on May 27th. To my knowledge, they have never played here, and they’re one of my favorites. Even though I just saw them at SXSW, I will be there enthusiastically. Their new album My Maudlin Career drops April 20th via 4AD. Check out the rest of their tour dates at their myspace.

Another upcoming show I’m looking forward to is The Pains of Being Pure at Heart @ the End on May 2nd. Like C.O., I saw this band at SXSW and they did not dissappoint. But I really look forward to seeing full length sets from both bands, as all the shows at SXSW are showcases with 5 or so bands, thus each band has less time to setup and a shorter set length than normal. POBPAH are definitely one of those “blog-buzz” bands, but I honestly think they will have more staying power and are on an entirely different level than say, Vampire Weekend or Clap Your Hands Say Yeah.

This image links to a great flickr set of vintage ads. Just take a minute to peruse through a few. You will enjoy it. Among my faves “Betty’s Gay with Midol“… “I cure women“… “The Miracle of Marlboro.”

Possibly one of the snarkiest local bloggers/writers/music critics is Andrew J. Smithson. He used to write for the Scene, but apparently didn’t like it very much and focused on his own blog. That original blog died, but now he has a new with an incredibly catchy and indicative name- indieocraty. I highly recommend checking it out.

You Ain’t No Picasso posted this new Microsoft ad about their new software Songsmith. Oh. My. God. According to YANP, this is, in fact, the real ad. Maybe Microsoft is trying to make fun of itself? No matter the intent… I too view this as a sign of the apocalypse.

Improv Everywhere is awesome. Check that link for coverage of their latest shenanigan- no pants day. Imagine being in NYC and seeing a bunch of people on the subway and on the streets just walking around with everything but pants on. I love the “freeze” events that they do as well. Nashville has a small group called the Dive-In Theater that does similar stuff. Megan and I participated in the “June Freeze” event in Hillsboro this past June. We met at the dragon park and walked over to Hillsboro Village, and with our phone alarms synced, we all froze up at the same moment, doing random things. It was hard to keep a striaght face while people looked at us curiously, wondering what the hell was going on. I highly suggest checking them out and participating in one of their events. It’s lots of fun.

Anyone who knows me probably knows that I like to do crazy shit like chase tornadoes, go hang-gliding, bungee-jumping (still on my to-do list), etc…. Well, I may have finally found something I wouldn’t do. I wouldn’t call myself an adrenaline junkie by any means… I don’t have the need to get out and do this kind of shit everyday… but I do love it. In my eyes these dudes are totally badass. I’ve actually seen this video once before… about a year ago. But my dad sent it to me today and I thought it would be worth posting. So what do you think? Are these guys totally badass or totally insane?

And finally, I must leave you with the metal band name flow chart: (click image to enlarge, then prepare to laugh histerically)