Posted inMusic

I got Hammered last night!

Lovehammers LogoRelax, it’s not what you think…

Last night, I went to see Marty Casey and the Lovehammers play at Blueberry Hill, a “St. Louis Landmark”. The Duck Room in the basement of Blueberry Hill was a great place to watch Marty and the band perform. The room is named in honor of Chuck Berry, who performs his signature duck-walk there regularly. I think he might also sing and play a little guitar too. ;-)

And perform they did! In addition to Lovehammers tunes like “Hold On“, “The Tunnel“, and the soon-to-be-classic “Trees“, they also played amazing covers of Pink Floyd’s “Wish You Were Here”, Johnny Cash’s “Ring of Fire” and “Paint It Black” from the Rolling Stones. Overall, they were on-stage for at least an hour-and-a-half and were called back for three encores. It was a terrific show for a great price (15 bucks).

For those of you in the shallow end of the pop culture pool (i.e. those of you with real lives), Marty Casey was the runner-up from last season’s Rock Star: INXS on CBS. Personally, I was pleased that he didn’t win the INXS gig outright because I think he’s much better with the Lovehammers. They haven’t hit the bigtime yet, but I can’t help but think it’s just a matter of time.

I’m going to go see them again in just a few weeks when they play at the Canopy Club in Urbana over by my alma mater, U of I. Tickets are available for purchase here. Hope to see y’all there!

Posted inGames

Please Sir, I want Spore…

Spore Creature DesignerNo, this won’t be an article about porn… :-P

Spore is the highly anticipated new game from acclaimed game designer Will Wright, creator of a number of classics including SimCity and The Sims. In Spore, you start out as a single celled microorganism, which you can grow and evolve as a species until eventually you are fighting other civilizations for control of the entire galaxy! Cool, huh? :-)

Spore is played in phases…

  • Tide Pool Phase – Fight with other creatures and consume them to adjust the form and abilities of your creature. ItÂ’s survival of the fittest at the most microscopic level.
  • Creature Phase – Venture onto land and help your creature learn and evolve with forays away from your nest. The only way to grow is by taking chances!
  • Tribal Phase– Instead of controlling an individual creature, you are now caring for an entire tribe. Give them tools and guide their interactions as you upgrade their state of existence.
  • City Phase – Bring your creaturesÂ’ race into a new golden era by building up the technology, architecture, and infrastructure of their city.
  • Civilization Phase – Once your city is established, your creatures begin seeking out and interacting with other cultures. Make contact with an olive branch or a war cry. The goal for your creatures is to conquer the planet.
  • Space Phase – The time has come to move on to other worlds in your solar system. Make contact, colonize, or terraform, then venture further to find other solar systems. A ‘missionÂ’ structure provides new goals in your quest for galactic dominance.

Unfortunately, the game isn’t due to be released until early next year, but it’s already generating lots of buzz, even in mainstream media. Spore articles have recently appeared online at BusinessWeek, Forbes, and New York Times (registration required), as well as on major gamer sites such as IGN, GameSpy, and Yahoo Games.

Can’t wait! ;-)

Posted inMusic

You DAMWELL BETTER Watch This Video!

I am honored and privileged to be able to present the exclusive world premier of the new music video “Dance All Night” (WMV 8MB) from the Damwell Betters. Formed in 2005, the Damwell Betters feature original songs and talented musicians that put on a great live show.

This video is presented courtesy of the wonderful people at Epix 1 Productions. Thanks Rhaine! And thanks to my friend Jenn for forwarding this link on to me.

Posted inGames


EVE OnlineMy gamer buddies and I have been looking for a new online game to play for a few weeks now. EVE Online is one of the games that we’ve considered. EVE Online is a massively multiplayer space simulation that combines aspects of role playing, space combat, economics and empire building into a huge, highly complex game. EVE’s universe features 5,000 distinct star systems, each of which contains a number of planets, moons, asteroid fields, space stations, and/or featured locations populated by numerous player and NPC (non-player character) ships, both good and bad. All of this fits into a single environment where everyone is playing in the same universe.

Although this game was initially released in 2003 (which makes it relatively ancient in terms of online games), it continues to innovate. EVETV features live online coverage of in-game events mixed in with commentary and analysis from PVP experts. Live coverage will be, uh, televised July 14th-16th and July 21st-23rd between 10:00 AM and 4:00 PM local time (central daylight).

I’ve been watching for more than an hour now (yes, I’m a complete geek and I’m OK with that ;-)), and the level of professionalism (for lack of a better word) in the commentary and studio segments is impressive. Of course, it doesn’t hurt that it’s a gorgeous game, graphically speaking. It seems like a great way for the developers to drum up interest in an existing game.

Boogey Mann - EVE OnlineUPDATE…

We took the plunge and signed up for the 14-day free trial… FIVE HOURS AGO!!! It’s now approximately 1:15 AM and there’s still quite a bit left to do in the game tutorial! However, I’m happy to report that so far IT’S FREAKIN’ AWESOME! :-)

The portrait above is of “Boogey Mann”, one of the newest pilots in the Caldari fleet. Don’t wanna go to bed. Wish we would’ve done this a couple nights ago… :-P

Posted inMusic


MySpace was recently declared the #1 single most visiting Website, according to top Internet tracker Hitwise. It has recently gotten a reputation (deservedly so) of being primarily a virtual hang-out for the teeny-boppers and their friends. But another thing that MySpace does well is allow musicians and bands to build pages that feature their latest music.

Anyway, I was browsing the Barenaked Ladies MySpace page earlier and a link or two later happened upon a band (actually I think it’s one guy) called Secondhand Serenade. If you like acoustic rock with slightly whiney, but good, harmonizing, then you’ll like this music. Reminds me a little of Dashboard Confessional.

Highly recommended. Let me know what you think…

Posted inOn The Web

Who’s On First?

I know that I’ve been remiss in my postings lately, but I had to put this one out there for my buddy Jeff, who’s a long-suffering fan of the Chicago Cubs

According to this story in the Boston Globe, an independent league baseball team in Illinois is putting the lineup card in the hands of its fans.

Unfortunately for my buddy, that team is not the Cubs. The Schaumberg Flyers announced Tuesday that the public now will be determining the team’s batting order and pitching rotation. Decisions are set via Internet voting. The fans’ first move: to override manager Andy McCauley in his choice of one position player. Eventually, fans will be able to decide who should be traded, too, the story said.

Posted inOn The Web

One red paperclip, one house, one year…

One Red PaperclipAnything’s possible when you have an interesting idea and the cohones to follow through with it…

Kyle MacDonald is a 26-year-old Montreal man who started out with a single red paperclip and the stated intention to kick off a series of trades which would result in a new house. It’s taken a year, but it looks like he’s done it!

Read all about it in his blog entitled, appropriately enough, One Red Paperclip.