Slanted and disenchanted: Stephen Malkmus, a.k.a. the king of obtuse lyrics, speaks loud and clear in next week's issue of usually doorknob-dull Entertainment Weeklyand how.

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Hypercritical

The latest on Stephen Malkmus, Meg White, and more.

Slanted and disenchanted: Stephen Malkmus, a.k.a. the king of obtuse lyrics, speaks loud and clear in next week's issue of usually doorknob-dull Entertainment Weeklyand how. Portland's indie emperor doesn't waste too much time talking about his new solo album, Pig Lib, before going knives-out for Sting ("One of my least favorite guys. He grosses me out. I hate the world music he makes"), Jimmy Fallon ("I want to take out that anti-talent. I'm mad at Jimmy Fallon for being average and getting so much credit just because he's cute"), and Halle Berry ("so in love with herself"). Next week, all about his momma. . . . While we await Stephen's visit with the awesome Scene Creamers at Graceland March 22, we will share fond memories of the Super Tuesday that was March 4. We're talking Quasi and Calexico at the Showbox, the Blood Brothers and Milemarker at Graceland, Nada Surf and Sondre Lerche at the Croc, Ladytron at Chop Sueyand that's not even counting all the Mardi Gras hoo-ha. Among our show reports for you, Graceland, according to Andrew Bonazelli: "The Blood Bros. were very attuned to personal politics ('I hope this is a safe, fun environment for you,' vocalist Jordan Blilie thoughtfully offered), delivering a showstopping impressionistic take on Bowie's 'Under Pressure' that somehow matched as-yet-unreleased song of the fucking year 'Cecelia & the Silhouette Saloon' in gonzo intensity." And the Showbox, as seen by our behind-the-scenes buddy Chris D.: "I thought I didn't like Quasi, but I must admit they won me over a bit. Sam Coomes sporting a little homemade anti-war T-shirt and shouting slogansif he's so angry and depressed, why the hell do I feel so happy standing there? As for Calexico, the whole show sounded perfectflawless really and then when they came offstage, they were all griping about this mistake and that . . . aw, the perfectionists." Last but not least (we lost our Nada Surf stringer somewhere out there): Ladytron. The U.K.'s

sexiest androgynous foursome transferred their hot-robot sounds beautifully to a live setting, turning out the best tracks from their recent Light and Magic and an older but still fresh 604 for a capacity crowd of black-clad Wallpaper subscribers and not a few members of the Seattle Fire Department (just checking for safety, was the word). . . . SXSW-goers, curse the evil ice that took down Meg White two weeks back. Thanks to New York City's cold, slippery streets, she's out of commission with an arm fractured in two places, which will cancel a planned Austin appearance of the White Stripes this week but, they insist, won't hurt an already sold-out weeklong U.K. tour scheduled to kick off April 7. . . . Oh, but you knew this was coming: A Ramones movie is in the works, and the names so far being thrown around include Lili Taylor as Patti Smith, Joaquin Phoenix as Iggy Pop, Robert Downey Jr. as manager Danny Fields, and Chlo렓evigny as Dee Dee's junkie girlfriend who stabs him. The film's director, Mary Harron (American Psycho, I Shot Andy Warhol) reportedly wants to tell the story through the eyes of longtime scenester Fran Pelzman, who first met the band while working at 16 magazine, but there's no word on whether she is responsible for asking Ashton Kutcher to play Dee Dee. Not that it mattershe turned it down. . . . Also shooting soon in movieland: Walk the Line, the story of Johnny Cash, starring, once again, Joaquin Phoenix (doing not too shabby for a man with a harelip), and Reese Witherspoon as his wife, June Carter, who you can catch on the real with George Jones this Tuesday at the Paramount. . . . While innocently watching E! True Hollywood Story this weekend, DOON nearly choked on our pretzel twisties at the new Victoria's Secret commercial. And no, it wasn't merely evil envy at the bouncy-bosomed 17-year-olds cavorting and frolicking in small lacy pantiesit was the fact that they were

doing it all to Bob Dylan's "Love Sick." It's true Bob's son Jesse directs television commercials, which may have had a little something to do with it, but still, holy crap. . . . Cult favorites Northern State, that trio of smart-mouthed Brooklyn girls the press always call "a female Beastie Boys," have been signed to Columbia Records. We're not sure what the hell a major thinks it will do with them, but then we wondered the same thing about the Mooney Suzuki and Fischerspooner. . . . And you thought she couldn't be paid to put clothes on: Christina Aguilera has just been signed as the new face of Versace (in the footsteps, you may recall, of both Courtney Love and Madonna), and will, of course, have to actually wear some of the designer's goodies in upcoming ads. . . . What do foxy Russian lesbi-teens and mopey Scottish sad-poppers have in common? Apparently, a producer. Trevor Horn, the man behind T.A.T.U.'s ubiquitous, shamelessly homoerotic "All the Things She Said" (not to mention Frankie Goes to Hollywood's "Relax"), has been tapped to produce Belle & Sebastian's upcoming record, and we can't wait. . . . If you haven't checked it out yet, and you're interested, local photographer Alice Wheeler's exhibit Towards Nirvana: Kurt Cobain is currently on at the Greg Kucera Gallery, located at 212 Third Ave. downtown, but you can also find a sneak preview online at www.gregkucera.com/wheeler.htm. . . . And finally, goodbye to Taric Matar, longtime DJ about town and resident at the Alibi Room, where there will be a memorial at 9 p.m. March 14. A diabetic, he died in his sleep last week at 31.

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