David Lynch and Alan R. Splet’s soundtrack for the former’s 1977 debut Eraserhead is one of the most powerful and unsettling scores in film history, a haunting mix of organ music, ambient noise and unusual, claustrophobic sound design. Now that soundtrack, which has developed its own kind of cult following removed from the source material, is getting a vinyl reissue August 6 via Sacred Bones.

The 1,500 copy run will feature the original CD tracks (“Digah’s Stomp / Lenox Avenue Blues / Stompin’ the Bug / Messin’ Around With the Blues”) as well as an individual 7” of Peter Iver’s song “In Heaven” (b/w “Pete’s Boogie”), memorably lip-synced in the film by actress Laurel Near. “In Heaven” has been covered by Pixies, Modest Mouse, The Danse Society, and others. [Via FACT]

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Last week's Absolut Unleashed party at Toronto club, The Hoxton, featuring MSTKRFT was a smashing success. How, you ask? Well, they came, they drank they partied.


Chris Rock has IGNITED a FIRESTORM of controversy for a July 4 Tweet that we’re all just hearing about now because, give us a break, the internet is very big!

Anyway, the comedian typed “Happy white peoples independence day the slaves weren't free but I'm sure they enjoyed fireworks." At least one of those statements is very true! The slaves weren’t free, though a century later they were free to fight for their freedom in the Civil War, given a choice between that and being savagely beaten. Nevertheless it’s not clear how pyrotechnical a 1st-anniversary celebration of independence would’ve gotten in 1777. Seems a bit premature.  

The question is: what do those in the black community think of Rock’s EXPLOSIVE Tweet / pointing out of something everyone knows is true but doesn’t like to admit? By far my favourite analysis comes from Patriot Post, where black commentator Ken Blackwell theorizes it was the comedian’s attempt “to capitalize on the 160th anniversary of that great Fifth of July speech delivered by black abolitionist Frederick Douglass.” Way to give Chris Rock, star of Down to Earth and Madagascar 2, FAR too much credit! Fucking Dennis Miller isn’t even that esoteric.


Today is International Kissing Day, and we at TORO couldn't be more happy.

History has given us some famous smooches — big ones, small ones, wet ones, bity ones, some as big as your head — we love them all! Life can be a valley of tears, but kisses are the best medicine.

To celebrate this day, get off your ass and kiss someone or something immediately.


Marc Webb’s pretty decent reboot-make-imagining of your great-grandpa’s Spider-Man (2002) will be the first part of a trilogy, revealed Columbia Pictures on the film’s Facebook page. Show of hands, everyone surprised by this! What’s really surprising is that, in 2012, this has to be announced. Don’t you foolish movie fans know everything is just a pretext to a bigger and more exciting product, that the old-fashioned one-sequel franchise model died like a century ago? How many years until octologies becomes the standard franchise model? I LITERALLY CAN’T WAIT!

But will this Amazing Spider-Man 2 be a reboot of Spider-Man 2 (2004)? That would be weird.

Related: Our review of The Amazing Spider-Man


Lists are fun. It’s amusing to assemble things in a purely subjective fashion and show that assemblage to other people so they can say “WRONG BOO HISS!” and call you an idiot. I love that.

Anyway, Hype Machine has analyzed 863 “key” music blogs to find out which artists are officially endorsed by Pitchfork being talked about in a purely organic fashion around the web:

1. Grimes
2. Lana Del Rey
3. Miike Snow
4. Beach House
5. Sleigh Bells
7. Lower Dens
8. Bear In Heaven
9. Santigold
10. Gotye
11. Azealia Banks
12. The Walkmen
13. Frankie Rose
14. Tanlines
15. M83
16. La Sera
17. Purity Ring
18. Andrew Brid
19. Diplo
20. The Shins
21. Father John Misty
22. Chromatics
23. Alabama Shakes
24. Sharon Van Etten
25. Twin Shadow

How many have you talked about today? Compare that total to your “most played” iTunes list and reflect on any apparent discrepancies. [Via BBC]


P.P.S. Ha ha. Gotye. He’s the real hype machine.


Tim Hortons is ordering up a fresh hot cup of technology. The coffee shop giant has revealed over 2,000 of their approximately 10 quadrillion Canadian outlets will feature free Wi-Fi service by September of this year, the first phase of a partnership with Bell.

This is very exciting. If there’s anything Tim Hortons really needs it’s incentive for customers to take up space. Aside from wayward crackheads trying to look inconspicuous, those six old Greek men who shout at each other but never seem to order anything, mothers carting 6-year-olds in enormous baby strollers, and the lineup of 25 people being served by one high school student, my local Tim’s is usually a real ghost town. [Via CityNews]


Last night, Canadian basketball superstar Steve Nash became a Los Angeles Laker, effectively dashing the hoop dreams of an entire nation, and leaving Toronto Raptors president and general manager Bryan Colangelo with his pants down. 

Getting Nash was a back-door steal for the Lakers. Officially a sign-and-trade with the Phoenix Suns, the deal puts Nash in L.A. for three years to the tune of $27 million. The Lakers gave up four draft picks to sign the point guard, which for a contending team, amounts to pretty much nothing.

The dinos — consensus favourites to land Nash this past week — went balls-to-the-wall to court the point guard. Their pitch included lucrative endorsement deals, a video solicitation from Nash’s childhood hero Wayne Gretzky, and a contract worth upwards of $36 million. Colangelo even offered Knicks restricted free agent Landry Fields a $20 million contract in an effort to fiscally knock New York out of Nash contention. But in the end, like lots of Canadians, Nash chose Hollywood over Toronto.

The deal leaves both Nash and Toronto in an awkward position. Nash, remember, is the new general manager of Canada’s senior men’s basketball team, headquartered in Toronto. A big part of his job is to galvanize Canadians and get them excited about the sport. But his decision to not play in Toronto raises a lot of questions about his commitment to the country. Expect beat grunts to be relentless, brutal, and unforgiving every time Nash crosses the border.

The Raptors, meanwhile, have to once again answer to a dejected fan base, and fill major talent holes on the roster. As far as we’re concerned, Toronto has no point guard. Jose Calderon is on the wrong side of 30 and looks like a pylon when defending opposing guards. Jerryd Bayless gets props for loving Toronto the city, but he’s not a true point guard and seems to have peaked in his development. According to Colangelo, the Raptors are supposed to do some damage this season, but his inability to woo Nash royally screws Toronto’s chances.

And what about this Landry Fields business? If the Knicks don’t match Toronto’s offer, the Raptors will be stuck with an overpaid shooting guard who last year shot 25 per cent from distance. Had Toronto landed Nash, the Fields signing would have been shrewd brilliance, but it now it just looks, well, dumb.

The sense of defeat and disappointment surrounding the Nash loss is familiar among fans. Besides making the Raptors a perennial lottery team, Colangelo’s consistent high-wire gambles have had few positive effects, and his most recent wager has alienated Canada’s only true basketball star. No matter how you spin it, the Raptors look like losers in the Steve Nash sweepstakes. We’re still optimistic about the future of this team, but the hurly-whirl drama and false expectations have to go.  


[html]This week the TORO Playlist shares videos from hip hop crew Canadian Winter, indie rock acts Dirty Projectors and Husky, and electro-pop upstart Charli XCX.

Canadian Winter - "Get the Show On the Road" feat. Tarek Funk (Single)

Related: TORO Interviews Canadian Winter

CocoRosie - "We Are On Fire" (Single)

American Royalty - "Blood Keys" (From the Matchstick EP, out now)

JJ - "Times" (Fan Video, originally from the High Summer EP, out now)

Aesop Rock - "ZZZ Top" (From Skelethon, out July 10)

Charli XCX - "You're the One" (From the You're the One EP, out now)

Husky - "Dark Sea" (From Forever So, out July 10)

Dirty Projectors - "Gun Has No Trigger" (From Swing Lo Magellan, out July 10)

Dawson Bros. - "Facebook Stalker" (Single)


[html]Last week we showed you this video of Paris Hilton the Professional DJ, a sight that understandably irked some in the normally easygoing electro-rave party mixing circuit. Now somebody named Jane Bang (is that a pun? I can’t tell) has released a diss track that doubles as an ode to the real DJs of the world. They work hard so people who aren’t me can enjoy their night of stimulant abuse and anonymous sex. GIVE IT UP:


South African director Neill Blomkamp has taken his sweet time following up the sleeper sci-fi hit (and Best Picture Oscar nominee, wasn’t that weird?) District 9 (2009). Elysium should finally hit theaters next year; it depicts a futuristic war between a rich, privileged class and the filthy masses kept from cutting-edge healthcare. Like that could ever happen.

Is bald Matt Damon, starring with Jodie Foster, Sharlto Copley and Alice Braga, evoking Walter White? We can’t wait to find out. [Via Indiewire]

Related: TORO Interviews Sharlto Copley


Stephen Soderbergh and Channing Tatum’s Magic Mike has recouped its budget seven times over, earned strong reviews from critics and audiences, and proved the hypothesis that women will pay money to see naked men dance. MOVIE SCIENCE!

Now the story will be adapted into a Broadway musical, albeit one in which security will be forced to pat down audience members for wadded-up, germ-ridden dollar bills. It will hit the stage summer of next year.

What songs will Magic Mike sing on his way to the top? Some suggestions:

“Oh, What a Beautiful Mornin’ Wood”

“Cheek to Cheek to Cheek to Cheek”
“Theme From Shaft”
“All That Jizz”

And so on. “Over the Rainbow” seems too on-the-nose.


Raccoons in Toronto are nasty little things. They tear through trash, bite dogs — some even look like monsters.

Luckily our American friends have come up with a new way to deal with the chubby buggers.

Introducing: Hannah Montana Raccoon Repellent. Watch this Santa-looking gentlemen exercise his Darwinian dominance over a rodent foe.

Thank you, Miley Cyrus. You've made the world a better place.



oz_the_great_and_powerful_xlg.jpgA few weeks ago we shared this fuzzy teaser poster for Sam Raimi’s Wizard of Oz prequel (yeah, they went there) Oz, the Great and Powerful. It wasn’t very impressive. Now if you’ll look to your left you’ll see a proper, downright beautiful official print that thankfully removes the stock image of a baked James Franco. Still wondering how Raimi and co. are going to cook real drama out of a character famous for being a greasy huckster, maybe this will be Alice in Wonderland meets House of Games? That’d be something. [Via IMP Awards]


Bar manager Aja Sax of The County General whips up another concoction.

Related: Aja makes a Traditional Bourbon Sour


A bunch of angry Quebecers are suing the State of California over its recent foie gras ban. The law, legislated in 2004 by then-governor Arnold Schwarzenegger, and brought into effect on July 1, bans the sale and production of foie gras — the fattened liver of force fed ducks and geese.

Rich, creamy, and sinful in its excess, foie gras is an essential ingredient in Quebec culture, and has helped solidify Montreal as a world food capital.

The case, officially known as the Association des Eleveurs de Canards et d’Oies du Quebec v. Kamala Harris, U.S. District Court, Los Angeles, stands to be a heated affair. Foie gras, is big business in Quebec, and California was a big-time consumer of the Canadian product.

“Ethical” versions of the delicacy have popped in farms in Badajoz, Spain (a unique location where the ducks binge eat olives and acorns in preparation for migration), but the flavour doesn’t compare to the real deal.

On the issue of cute creatures vs. deliciousness, we're torn. It's a disgusting choice. Maybe the ducks can take solace in the fact that they bring joy to so many foodies around the world?


The east coast is moving north. In September, Toronto’s upscale Deer Park neighbourhood, anchored by Yonge and St. Clair, will be graced with the arrival of John & Sons Oyster House, a top-quality shellfish emporium from the masterminds behind Rodney’s By Bay (not to be confused with the also awesome Rodney’s Oyster House on King Street West.)

Co-owner John Belknap says that the new restaurant will be similar in décor and tone to his financial district first-born, with a few tweaks here and there to meet the tastes of the neighbourhood. Deer Park, while refined, is far more calm and urbane than the frenetic vibrations of Bay Street. The neighbourhood is home to some of Toronto’s heavy hitters—actors, politicians, tycoons—but it is decidedly older and rich with pre-Modern aesthetic.

Expectations from locals will be high. John & Sons will be located in the former home of Toronto Italian institution Terroni, and the neighbourhood is packed with established dining destinations.

We think the oyster bar will do well. Great, sustainable seafood is hard to come by in this town, and the neighbourhood could use an injection of unpretentious, casual, eat-with-your-hands fare.


Ben Caplan wants to make a music video and he needs your help. The Halifax musician has launched a PledgeMusic campaign to fund a 3D clip for “Conduit,” from his latest album In the Time of the Great Remembering. Check out the video pitch at the bottom of this page and start writing your $2500 cheques.

Meanwhile Caplan continues his prolific touring schedule with summer dates across North America and Europe. Behold:

July 4 - Milwaukee (U.S. Cellular Stage Emerging Artists Series)
July 7 - St. John, NB (Market Square Boardwalk)
July 14 - Munich (Gehrlicher Musik Arena)
July 22 - Antigonish, NS (Evolve Music Festival)
Aug 3 - Charlottetown, PEI (Hunter's Ale House)

Aug 9 - Woodstock, NB (Dooryard Festival)
Aug 10 - Anagance, NB (Messtival)
Aug 11 - Fredericton, NB (The Capital Complex)
Aug 26 - St. Stephen, NB (Freedom Festival)
Sept 1 - Warfhuizen, Netherlands (Roodehaan)
Sept 2 - Thorn, NL (Abbey Sessions)
Sept 2 - Eindhoven, NL (Effenaar Tuin)
Sept 6 - Groningen, NL (Simplon)
Sept 7 - Vlieland, NL
Sept 8 - Haarlem, NL (Patronaat)
Sept 11 - London, UK (Water Rats)
Sept 14 - Amsterdam (Winston)
Sept 15 - Gerardmer, France (Le Grattoir)
Sept 16 - Tavigny, Belgium (La Truite de Argent)
Sept 17 - Frankfurt (Ponyhof)
Sept 19 - Munich (Muffatcafe)
Sept 20 - Haldern, GER (Haldern Pop Bar)
Oct 25 - Cambridge, UK (Junction)
Oct 27 - Leeds (The Cockpit)
Oct 28 - Glasgow (Oran Mor)
Oct 29 - Birmingham (Birmingham Library)
Oct 31 - London, UK (Islington Academy)
Nov 1 - Oxford, UK (Academy 2)
Nov 2 - Manchester (Sound Control)
Nov 3 - Bristol (Thekla)
Nov 16 - Halifax (Rebecca Cohn Auditorium, Special Performance and Collaboration with the Nova Scotia Symphony)

Related: Ben Caplan Live @ TORO


According to Gawker, Kanye West is addicted to handing out $34,000 statues.

Reportedly, Kanye gave his friend, and partner in illtronics, Jay-Z, a solid gold skull statue encrusted with 1,680 star-cut red topaz gemstones. The occasion? Father's Day (Jay's a new daddy).

Kanye then gave his lover Kim Kardashian another skull statue, with the letters KKW (the "W" stands for West) engraved on the back, because nothing says monogomy like a Mid-Asian reminder of your own mortality.

The statues are called Divora skulls and are made by Lions and Sons. The company, which doesn't seem to make anything else, sells 18 different versions of the statue, including one made with rhodium and black gemstones, and another made with white and rose gold and amethysts. Fans of Lions and Sons include Vlad the Impaler and Dan Aykroyd.

So remember, every time you suspect your friends are talking about you behind your back, or your father isn't returning your calls, or your girlfriend leaves you for your boss, it's because you weren't a good enough person to give them a diamond-studded gold skull statue.

Nevertheless, we still think this kid got one of the best gifts of all-time!



The_Casual_Vacancy.jpgHarry Potter creator J.K. Rowling is taking her first step away from that beloved franchise, and it’s a big one. If you look to your left you’ll see the just-released cover for The Casual Vacancy, Rowling’s first non-Potter, adult-centric book. The political thriller takes place in a fictional small town called Pagford, a place under turmoil; “Rich at war with poor, teenagers at war with their parents, wives at war with their husbands, teachers at war with their pupils…Pagford is not what it first seems” says publisher Little, Brown and Company. It will be released September 27. [Via EW]