Routine Check 9/21/12

– I’m late on this, but last month saw the last episode of long-term Conan mainstay Brian McCann, an extremely funny writer and performer who did a lot of the heavy lifting in defining the weird, edgy humor on all of Mr. O’Brien’s programs. After 17 years, it’s impossible to estimate the number of spit takes he’s instigated even in just myself alone; I’ll point to The Comic’s Comic for a good round-up of YouTube highlights including a “video slideshow” compiled by the Team Coco folks. McCann was the Late Night audience warm-up comic from 2000 on and has had success with his hilarious troubadour character Raisin, opening for Yo La Tengo and performing his Campfire Fun Time show all over New York’s improv rooms. He’s moving back to NYC after following Conan to Los Angeles for TBS, and will presumably continue being funny and excellent in new and exciting ways.

– Speaking of which, the Tig Notaro stand-up set I posted about last month has continued to peak interest among the comedy-obsessed, with the dual happy ending being that Tig went on Conan last night to announce an optimistic prognosis following the double mastectomy and that Louis CK will be releasing audio of the Largo appearance through his website the same way he released his Live at the Beacon Theater special. Update: It’s up now for only $5, along with a nice note from Louis talking about the whole thing.

– Top Shelf is running their annual “$3 sale” (which is actually a massive sale in which $3 is just one of a variety of cost brackets) again, which is always a great time to pick up some indie comics you’ve been meaning to pick up. You can grab new stuff from Jeff Lemire, Alan Moore, and Eddie Campbell at almost-silly prices.

– AV Club points to an unexpected YouTube resurgence of Liam Lynch and Matt Crocco’s cult MTV puppet show Sifl and Olly, with the pair (and pals) now doing short video game reviews. I’ve been watching the original show a lot lately for some reason, so that’s a nice surprise.

– A Special Thing’s forum has a rundown of some upcoming comedy series in development at various networks, some of which sound too good to become anything but another legendary failed pilot. The Christopher Guest show for HBO has gotten enough press already (and seems like such an obvious slam dunk) that it will likely be fine, but there’s a wealth of interesting stuff on the docket: A Stephen Merchant solo series based on his stand-up material, a ’50s period comedy starring the very funny June Diane Raphael and Casey Wilson, a show based on the great, underseen musical comedy Punching the Clown, plus several previously announced shows from the likes of Daniel Clowes, Charlie Kaufman, and Dan Harmon.

– I don’t have a stream for it, but I’m mildly interested in this new A Tribute to Repo Man compilation, featuring acts like Black Francis, Mike Watt, and Amanda Palmer covering songs from the seminal movie soundtrack, reminiscent of the enjoyable High School Reunion – A Tribute to Those Great ’80s Films album from a few years back.

Today in streams and freebies: 1) You can stream Dinosaur Jr.’s tenth albumI Bet on Sky, at NPR. If it’s as good as their ninth album was, I’ll be very excited. 2) Also at NPR, the new Grizzly Bear album, which seems to me to be strangely under-hyped considering how popular their last go was with a cross-section of indie listeners. I prefer Department of Eagles myself, but I’m looking forward to checking it out. 3) The Film Stage has an embed of Jonny Greenwood’s The Master score. I definitely left the movie wanting to play closer attention to the music by itself, though I probably wouldn’t recommend listening to it before seeing it. 4) Hey, here’s an album I don’t fully understand: A compilation from an online collaboration project called hitRECord that somehow involves Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Nels Cline, and Cibo Matto. Sounds pleasantly interesting from a skip-through on Bandcamp.


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