Smashley's Posts

Quiet Company is Releasing a New Album

Quiet Company is Releasing a New Album

Quiet Company, an Austin band most famous for their 2011 album We Are All Where We Belong — which has been described as lead singer Taylor Muse’s breakup letter to God — makes frequent appearances here on the Lab. We’ve featured a tune of theirs in a lab track, I did an extended interview with them, and we’ve repped their nationwide tour. Now, I’m excited to ann... »

Lab Track: Every Age

Lab Track: Every Age

Today’s Lab Track comes via the suggestion of Skepchick writer Jamie Bernstein, and it’s sure to give you chills. (Hey, did you know chills are associated with dopamine activity in the brain’s reward system? I wrote about that a few years ago.) The video is also very timely, what with the Philae lander touching down on comet 67P last Wednesday and humanity going oh, yeah, we land... »

Lab Track: Anaconda, The Educational Version

Lab Track: Anaconda, The Educational Version

Nicki Minaj’s “Anaconda”, which samples Sir Mix-a-Lot’s “Baby Got Back” and has a music video that requires viewers to take a cold shower afterward, has experienced its share of parodies. (Have you seen the Anaconda Fart Remix? It’s exactly what it says on the tin.) This one is by far my favorite. Sure, it’s educational, but it’s also incredibl... »

Show Us Your Ugly Things, Standup Comedy Edition

Show Us Your Ugly Things, Standup Comedy Edition

Showing your ugly things is a theme that Mad Art Lab harps on regularly. The idea is that the silly drawings or crafts or songs or writing you do behind closed doors for yourself and yourself alone, no matter how terrible you think it is, shouldn’t be kept secret. Putting your stuff out there for the world to see achieves a whole number of wonderful things: critique, for example, is essentia... »

Lab Track: Nikola Tesla Dood

Lab Track: Nikola Tesla Dood

You’re a fan of Matthew Inman’s comic The Oatmeal, yes? Aren’t we all? Have you seen his reverential Nikola Tesla comic? Did you know that Inman loves Tesla so much that he ran an Indiegogo campaign that raised $1.37 million to purchase Tesla’s own lab in hopes of turning it into a Tesla museum? And that it was successful? Did you know that he’s now raising money to a... »

Lab Track: Scientist

Lab Track: Scientist

I’ve been listening to The Dandy Warhols recently, since I’ll be seeing them at the Chicago iteration of Riot Fest in a few weeks. I happily stumbled upon this old gem, which features simple lyrics about a scientific approach to life over a driving groove. Enjoy! Scientist The Dandy Warhols In me the scientist always stuck on Always trying this I try to live on science alone Analysis a... »

Lab Track: Infinite Monkey Cage Theme

Lab Track: Infinite Monkey Cage Theme

One of the great things about going to conventions, besides getting to see all the wonderful people I get to see, is the bounty of new ideas and recommendations and inspiration those people give me. One such recommendation came from Labber Ryan, who told me about a science podcast from the BBC known as The Infinite Monkey Cage. I subscribed, started listening, and have since recommended it to ever... »

If We Can’t Laugh at Jazz Satire, Jazz is More Fragile Than We Thought

If We Can’t Laugh at Jazz Satire, Jazz is More Fragile Than We Thought

Update: I appeared on WNYC’s Soundcheck to debate this topic with 30-year jazz critic Howard Mandel. It’s on the August 7th episode. Go listen! This past weekend, the internet exploded (as it is wont to do). The New Yorker published an article in its Shouts and Murmurs column, which is reserved for humor and satire, entitled “Sonny Rollins: In His Own Words.” From the ficti... »

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