Grand royal: King Creosote charms up a storm

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By Todd Lavoie

Aye, yes, it's been a stellar year for Scotland, musically speaking, what with floor-me-flat-out releases from the likes of Edwyn Collins, Alasdair Roberts, Malcolm Middleton, Emma Pollock, the Twilight Sad - not to mention the triumphant return of the Jesus and Mary Chain - and, sitting at the tippy-top of this list, the astonishingly prolific folk-pop troubadour from Fife, Kenny Anderson, better known as King Creosote. Read more »

Hey, Moped, lemme ride your two-man musical people mover

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By Chris DeMento

I don’t like techno. And by calling it techno, of course I mean to deride electronic music, perhaps only for effect, or maybe because I have all these negative electro-associations: the movie Swordfish, for example. There’s one. Read more »

The Elationists: Seizing the day after

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By Benedict Sinclair

The Foundation for the Preservation of Fantastic Possibilities lies behind black double doors, like any you’d happen upon in a SOMA alley. They stand without a grandiose poster or sign to mark the entrance. Unexpected, for a crew bearing such a title. A simple white “444” points the way. Inside a sign reads “Behold! Read more »

Guardian Sports: Zipped lips for Ravens

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By AJ Hayes

It's interesting how the NFL promotes itself as the all-American sport while making its players follow a zipped-lip policy you might have expected to find behind the Iron Curtain. That's the Iron Curtain of the former USSR, not the Steel Curtain of the '70s Pittsburgh Steelers.

For all the times football fans have had to sit through incessant flag waving John Mellencamp's "This is Our County" Chevy ads during NFL telecasts you might have thought that the NFL big wigs would have freedom of speech as a basic right of it's employees. Read more »

Missing person: have you seen Mandy Stokes?

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Getting the word out for a friend whose cousin has been missing for 2 weeks:

Alicia Amanda Stokes, who goes by Mandy, is 33 years old, 5'4" with blonde hair and green eyes. She was last seen on Sunday, November 25 at her home in Oakland. Her car was found abandoned containing her wallet and cell phone at 5000 Park Blvd, one freeway exit away from her home. Read more »

Fashion forward

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Simon Doonan, creative director for Barneys New York, defines San Francisco style this way: “People here are into design,” he said, while in town in September for the grand opening of Barneys’ Bay Area flagship store. “It’s about the craft of fashion, not the hype of fashion.” In L.A., he pointed out as an example, style is all about exhibitionism, about what other people think of what you’re wearing. Read more »

Iron and Wine is what happens when you’re making plans for Friday night

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By Erik Morse

So the night, Nov. 30, was a disaster of sorts but not for the reasons you’d think - and before you gag yourself with the prospect of another music review-turned personal soapbox or group session, bear with me. Read more »

Mecke second, Hoogasian third

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Here's an interesting chart, thanks to Marc Salomon, totalling the second- and third-choice votes in the mayor's race. SInce Newsom won a clear majority, ranked-choice voting never came in to play, but if it had, and just for fun and the permanent record, Quintin Mecke came in second, Harold Hoogasian third, Wilma Pang fourth. Chicken John didn't come close to his goal of being the Number Two candidate.

I think I'm reading this right.

Newsom's new tax

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When I first saw this press release, I thought: Wow. Gavin Newsom realizes that there's a $250 million budget deficit, and he's actually trying to do something about it. We tax cigarettes because they're unhealthy, why not tax carbon emissions, which are killing the planet -- and raise a little money in the process?

Well, damn: There's a problem. The key word here is "revenue neutral." Newsom's going to give tax rebates to anyone who has to pay this new tax. Read more »

Democrats again reveal their complicity in BushCo misdeeds

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Bay Area congressional Democrats Tom Lantos and Nancy Pelosi: fighting imperial excesses, one capitulation at a time.
So congressional Democrats are angry about the New York Times revelation that the CIA destroyed videotapes of their agents harshly interrogating (ne torturing) al Qaeda suspects. Read more »