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Monthly Archives: July 2012

Published July 14, 2012 on Newsday.com’s ‘LI Now.’

It’s raining. Water is flooding at your feet. You’re running for your life from massive rock monsters trying to beat out the mob of terrified people who also need to get onto the ark. Noah was right. And then, the ark’s gate closes.

“Spoiler alert: You won’t make it.”

At least that’s what a casting director told Mia Imbesi from Syosset at a casting call for the upcoming Darren Aronofsky film “Noah,” which is set to film on Long Island.

Imbesi, 17, was joined by hundreds of other extra hopefuls at the Greek Orthodox Church in Brookville on Saturday, where Grant Wilfley Casting, Inc. held an open casting call for “Noah” and Martin Scorsese’s latest project, “The Wolf of Wall Street.”

The “Noah” casting notice asked for “men and women with toned-slender runner’s bodies, who are willing to work at night in the rain,” and auditioners dressed the part. Many showed up in bright athletic tanks, running shorts and Nike sneakers.

The potential extras were sat in a room with about 200 chairs. A casting director then outlined the two films and addressed some of the specifics they’re looking for: Men should have long, scraggly hair and facial hair. Clean-cut men were advised not to get a hair cut in the next month.

Auditioners filled out an application which listed the standard questions such as name, age and address. Then there were the not-so-standard questions about tattoos, piercings and pets. Also asked with “yes” and “no” boxes: “Are you willing to do the following: Smoke on camera? Have your hair cut? Grow facial hair? Willing to work in the rain?”

After having their picture taken by casting directors, those willing to do stunt work were directed outside and given scenarios like Imbesi described.

Dolores Doman, 55, from Dix Hills, was also instructed to act as if she was being chased by massive “stone monsters,” with “terror” written all over her face. Others were also asked to mime fighting rock monsters with spears and holding a shield.

Doman had never been to a casting call, like many other hopefuls in attendance.

“I didn’t know what to expect,” she said. “It was awkward but it was a lot of fun.”

Christine Bailey, 47, of Kings Park, heard about the open call on Friday. She was most excited about the possibility to work with the all-star cast of “Noah,” which includes Russell Crowe, Emma Watson, Jennifer Connelly and Sir Anthony Hopkins.

“Who doesn’t want to meet someone called ‘Sir’?” Bailey asked.

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Published July 17, 2012 on The Vinyl District.

Source: The Vinyl District

When we first met KITTEN in 2010, we were well, …smitten. So much so that frontwoman Chloe Chaidez took over TVD for a week as the band went from CMJ to the UK. KITTEN had just released their first EP “Sunday School,” and Chaidez was already coming into her own Karen-O-meets-Cat-Power-meets-Annie-Lennox-meets-something-completely-new at 15 years old.

Fast forward two years and KITTEN has kicked off a Summer tour with The Pomegranates and has a new EP “Cut It Out” hitting store shelves on August 28, and a full-length album due out early 2013. Just yesterday KITTEN released a banging new track off the August EP, “Japanese Eyes.”

Chaidez, now 17, has used the past two years to hone her mature vocals, badass vibe, and KITTEN as a band. Chloe confides she’s “really fortunate” to pursue her love of music having picked up her first instrument, a bass, at 10. When it comes to making music, “It’s not something I thought of. ‘Oh this is what I like, I want to do this,’” she said.

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Published on The Vinyl District July 10, 2012. 

Japandroids, Celebration Rock

Source: Handout, Polyvinyl Record Co.

Japandroids’ Celebration Rock is bookended with the banging sounds of fireworks, awfully appropriate for this 8-song, 35-minute explosion of rock ‘n’ roll.

Youthful in energy, but mature in execution. Brash, but polished. The Vancouver-based guitar and drum duo, Brian King and David Prowse released their sophomore album in early June and have critics and listeners falling in love. The garage rock band’s first effort, 2009’s Post-Nothing, also met critical acclaim and blog buzz, but prior to its release King and Prowse almost called it quits. Thank god they didn’t.

Critics across the board praise Japandroids’ infectious live performance; “energetic” is a gross understatement. Village Voiceblogger Nick Murray admits to getting sucked in at a gig: “You’ll have to excuse my paraphrase, because as the chords that begin ‘Younger Us’ rang out, I ditched the transcription, stuffed my notebook into my pants, and pushed my way to the front of the venue. Sorry.” Bad news: y’all just missed Japandroids’ sold-out show at The Rock & Roll Hotel on June 30.

The record’s single “The House That Heaven Built” has been declared the indie song of the summer by Stereogum voters, and with good reason. It’s hard to listen to the robust track, with lyrics like “And if they try to slow me down / I’ll tell ‘em all to go to hell / Oh-oh-oh-oh-oh-oh-oh!” and not want to shout along out your open car window, cruising on a warm night.

It’s that kind of youthful, empowered attitude that pulses through the earnest Celebration Rock. For all its hard riffs, driving drums and shouted lyrics, this record is far from angry — more of a celebration, if you will, of the days of less responsibility.

To get your hands on an autographed copy of this summer’s most explosive record — musically and critically — comment with the album that reminds you of the summers of yesteryear.

I can’t think of my high school summer vacation days without hearing Taking Back Sunday’s Tell All Your Friends. Growing up on Long Island, where the emo-pop-punk band is from, it might as well have been required listening.

Please remember, only those of you with mailing addresses in the continental US and Canada can enter! The winner will be chosen a week from today, 7/17.