Friday, December 12, 2008

This One's a Two Parter

Has anyone been watching Spectacle, the new show on the Sundance Channel hosted by Elvis Costello? To tell you the truth, from the outset I thought it sounded kind of lame, and the ads I see for it on the subway look cheesy and thrown together. I'm not sure why I was worried though, as nearly everything Costello involves himself with is interesting, smart, and intensely enjoyable. Spectacle is no exception. It's like Inside The Actor's Studio, but with established musicians instead of movie stars.

Also, instead of wanting to murder the host, he is one of your personal idols. Okay, maybe not everyone is as stoked on Costello as I am, but he seems to get great interviews out of his guests and the interviews are broken up with plenty of jamming to keep things moving. The Lou Reed episode was especially enlightening; Costello really got the usually closed off artist to open up; the two men really got into the ins and outs of their creative processes, sharing more than a few fascinating stories. At one point Julian Schnabel came out (he directed Lou Reed’s Berlin concert film), but that’s why they invented DVR. I can't wait until next week: guest Bill Clinton. God I hope they jam!

Also: the commercials on Sundance are weird, and long (there's usually only one per break) but they can be kind of good. I know that Chris Cornell (Soundgarden, Audioslave) and Timbaland make me want to scream, and the news that they are now collaborating on an album together just sounds completely misguided, but it's kind of interesting seeing them in the studio together during one such ad:

A few random thoughts: first off, those guys are in shape. They totally go to the gym together. And they're working on an hourlong music piece? And now Timbo thinks he is a composer and will be calling himself such. Alright dudes, whatever you say.

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