Elsewhere, 12/15

Portishead — remember them?!? — are set to release a new album in April 2008. They recently played a series of concerts, and thanks to the beauty of the Intertubes, several clips are now available for your viewing pleasure. Initial reactions: it’s unmistakably Portishead, albeit in a weirder form.

What do Arcade Fire, Feist, Studio, and Iron & Wine all have in common? They’re all on the list of Aaron Elastic’s favorite albums of 2007.

Twitch reviews Makoto Shinkai’s 5 Centimeters Per Second: “While Shinkai’s latest… does not quite raise him to the current level of the great master it definitely represents a huge step forward and is exactly the sort of film that you would expect to come out of Miyazaki’s Studio Ghibli on one of their better days.”

Also from a Twitch: an interview with Pen-Ek Ratanaruang on Ploy and his other films.

Paste Magazine recently pulled a Radiohead, letting folks choose how much they wanted to pay for a subscription. A move that, at least in part, seemed to have worked: the magazine has apparently picked up another 30,000 subscriptions.

AngryApe interviews Miracle Fortress (whose Five Roses album has at least one of my fave songs of 2007) and reviews a recent performance.

I don’t obsess much over search engine optimization; I think folks oftentimes pour way too much time and energy into “influencing” Google et al. rather than let things happen organically. But SEOmoz’s “Rewriting the Beginner’s Guide” series has been really interesting, especially the most recent installment, “The Basics of Search Engine Friendly Design & Development.”

Mass Effect has gone platinum. Not that I’m surprised, it’s a great game (albeit with a few flaws here and there). I beat it earlier this week and am currently on my second go-around.

The Pitchfork fellows know their way around the snark, as evidenced by their list of the 20 worst album covers of 2007. The Hayseed Dixie, Ted Nugent, and Perry Farrell covers are especially noxious.

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