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I’m happy to announce that my band POWERBRRRD has signed a deal with Merge Records. We will be releasing our debut album sometime this fall, followed by a tour of the US opening for Superchunk.

In other news:

1. Pithchfork gave MGMT’s new album Congratulations a perfect 10.0, as reported by Hipster Runoff.

2. The Rolling Stones played a secret show last night at the End, as reported by Nashville Cream.

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Via Ironic Sans

Via Ironic Sans

That image kinda made my day this morning. Click to get to the actual Ironic Sans post.

I’m pretty stoked to announce a DJ gig next week with one of my all-musical heroes Matt Mahaffey. Anyone who knows me knows that I’m an avid sElf fan and basically love anything the guy has done. The event is a benefit at Mai for Voices for Planned Parenthood (VOX). It’s next Thursday July 26th and starts at 10pm. DJ’s will be Matt Mahaffey, Me (DJ Burgers), and DJ Busta Window (Kelly Kerr). There’s no cover and 5% of the bar sales will go towards VOX. From the press release:

This special one night only event will be used to raise funds for PPMET’s Volunteer Program and area college and university student-run organizations known as “Vox®: Voices for Planned Parenthood.” Anyone who supports Planned Parenthood® can join Vox® as its members are a composite of young professionals and post-grads whose progressive values and volunteer spirit reflect the diversity of Tennessee.

I came across some amazing photos from the Glastonbury Music Festival today at the Boston Globe’s Big Picture blog. Do give it a look, your eyes will thank you.

Some more updates on the new “SyFy” series Stargate: Universe can be found at io9 today. They’ve also launched a new website for the full Stargate franchise. Give the Universe section a good look-over if you’re interested. It contains quite a few video clips and images of the new cast as well as the set.

The Ad Astra Rocket Company has been hard at work building a rocket engine that sounds like something straight out of Star Trek. It’s called the Variable Specific Impulse Magnetoplasma Rocket (VASIMR). This thing will greatly reduce the costs of space exploration because it’s many many more times efficient than our current chemical fuel rockets. Unfortunately it won’t work within Earth’s atmosphere, so we’ll still have to use conventional rockets to get us into space, but once we’re there, these engines will make space travel much easier. They build upon the idea of an ion engine (like the one used on NASA’s Deep Space 1 mission), but VASIMR will use superconducting electromagnets to accelerate the ions to much higher velocities (and thus generate more thrust) than past ion engines. (Via Daily Galaxy)

On my way home from work- 31st ave north near Centennial park.

On my way home from work- 31st ave north near Centennial park. Click to enlarge.

Yesterday brought some very interesting weather to Nashville. Interestingly enough, the biggest story was the flash flooding that occurred downtown, not necessarily the (not-yet-confirmed by the weather servie) tornado that allegedly touched down near the airport/Donelson. Nashvillest had a link to a pretty amazing video of the Hillsboro Village area during the peak of the flooding. Poor Fido’s! I hope they didn’t have any real damage from the water! I barely made it home from work before the cops shut down West End due to the water. Yesterday’s incident was the classic example of flash-flooding. It was simply a case of a tremendous amount of water being dumped in one area in a very short amount of time. When this happens it simply overwhelms even the best of drainage systems, and all that water has to go somewhere. In fact, according to the NWS website, we set a record high maximum daily rainfall yesterday! Go us?

The Sun is sleeping. At least as far as sunspot activity goes. As you probably learned in middle school, the sun goes through an 11-year cycle of sunspot activity. The peak time is solar maximum and the low point is solar minimum. Right now we’re in solar minimum (the last maximum was around 2001), but this one is particularly low. So low that it has scientists intrigued as to what exactly this could mean for the next solar maximum, scheduled for 2012-2013. Universe Today has a great article on this if you’re interested in learning more.

Ok, on to some non-scientific links…

Oddee.com has some really big stuff on today’s post.

A German researcher accidently pricked herself with a needle used to inject Ebola into mice, and was given an experimental vaccine that had never been tested on humans. She’s fine now, but it’s not clear whether the vaccine saved her, or if the virus simply never enter her bloodstream in the first place. Scary…

Those crazy pranksters at Improv Everywhere pulled off one hell of an April Fool’s joke wednesday. They attempted to give someone the “best funeral ever” by finding the smallest funeral with the fewest likely relatives/friends, and sending a large group of mourners to make the family have the best funeral ever. The only thing is… it was all staged, including the funeral itself. But the local news totally fell for it and covered it as a real news story! Congrats, guys. In case you didn’t know, this same group drew some ire over a prank where they found a crappy band with almost no fans, and sent a huge group of people to one of their shows to totally rock out and act crazy as though they were dedicated fans. Of course, this ended up backfiring and really pissed off the band and a lot of youtube viewers. The group finally apologized for the whole thing.

WEEKEND STUFF!

For Friday:

Probably the coolest thing happening is The Privates’ Motion EP release show at the Basement. These guys just can’t seem to stop making amazing rock music. Opening are Hotpipes and the Garland Sisters.

Also, L.A.-Nashville transplants The Ettes are rocking the Exit/In with Wax Fang and The Whigs.

Another event worth mentioning is the Hot Rocks Dance Party at Mercy Lounge. This event is basically the same thing as the weekly Monday night rock n roll dance parties held at the 5 Spot, except they’ve jumped the river for a weekend time slot, and added in Broadway honky-tonker Heath Haynes.

For Saturday:

The Tits, Lovehog, & Sam Stewart @ the End.

Carter Administration & Power Load: an AC/DC Tribute @ the 5 Spot. Power Load is comprised of members of the Carter Admin and the Clutters.

Another local music tidbit that you probably already know by now: the full motion picture soundtrack to locally-made indie film Makeout With Violence is now available at their website. Two full CDs of music for only $15? You can’t beat that with a stick.

Today Google has announced the world’s first real artificial intelligence called CADIE, or “Cognitive Autoheuristic Distributed-Intelligence Entity.” This is a milestone in technological achievement, people. Just look at CADIE’s homepage.

In music news, Bjork has agreed to join Led Zeppelin as their new lead singer for their upcoming reunion tour. Via You Ain’t No Picasso.

Expedia.com has just announced that they’re offering super package deals for trips to Mars. Of particular interest is the Utopia Spa & Resort, which was obviously modeled after a very familiar comic-inspired structure right here in Nashville. While there, you can take part in some amazing activities such as Dust Surfing, Super Low-G Martial Arts, Mars Rover Rides, and best of all, the Pareidolia Tour, “including the Smiley Face Crater, the Chryse Alien Head, and even the mysterious Face on Mars.” Via Nashvillest.

Finally, today we bring you the deleted sex scene from Twilight.

Photo cliches: a collection of the most common cliches in tourist photos. Included- the fake phallus, statue groping, the Lynndie England thumbs-up, snorting Coca Cola.

While we’re on the subject the phallus… might as well post a link to the Head O State Obama sex toy. You really have to read the “testimonials,” especially the one from Sarah Palin.

Ok, enough giggly sexual innuendo.

A new environmentally-minded general store is opening in the Sylvan Park neighborhood of west Nashville. That’s just around the corner from me, so I’ll probably be hitting it up pretty soon. Read all about it in that Nashvillest post. I’ll bet if it’s successful she’ll open another one in east Nashville. Those two communities seem to be the most likely locations for such a store.

Neko Case has released her newest single via free download at Brooklynvegan. For every blog that reposts this song, Neko and ANTIlabel will make a cash donation to the Best Friends Animal Society. So download it, and if you have a blog, REPOST!

Neko Case-People Got A Lotta Nerve.mp3

Here’s a really cool collection of How-To graphics and illustrations. Fun to just peruse through… if that sort of thing interests you.

And for a little science: Wired talks about the top 5 best bets for extraterrestrial life in our own solar system. The top choice might surprise you, depending on how closely you follow the latest astronomy news.

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