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Celebrities attend the Los Angeles Lakers basketball game

Flea - Celebrities attend the Los Angeles Lakers basketball game - Los Angeles, California, United States - Tuesday 13th January 2015

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Stanley Cup Finals Game 1

Chad Smith and Flea - Celebrities arrive at the Stanley Cup Finals Game 1 held at Staples Center between the Los Angeles Kings and New York Rangers - Los Angeles, California, United States - Wednesday 4th June 2014

Chad Smith and Flea

David Lynch Foundation honors Rick Rubin

Flea and Michael Balzary - David Lynch Foundation honors Rick Rubin with Lifetime of Harmony Award at the Beverly Wilshire Hotel - Los Angeles, California, United States - Thursday 27th February 2014

David Lynch Foundation honors Rick Rubin

Flea Geezer Butler - David Lynch Foundation honors Rick Rubin with Lifetime of Harmony Award - Beverly Hills, California, United States - Thursday 27th February 2014

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Flea, David Lynch and Rick Rubin

Premiere Of Warner Bros. Pictures' "Her."

Flea - Premiere Of Warner Bros. Pictures' "Her." - West Hollywood, California, United States - Thursday 12th December 2013

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Bob And The Monster Trailer


Bob Forrest was at the height of the sex, drugs and rock 'n' roll era of the eighties as he toured the States with his punk rock band Thelonious Monster, taking in every narcotic that became available to him. He took so many drugs and consumed so much alcohol that he became a shadow of his former self, unable to stay stood up on stage, regularly falling unconscious and frequently causing a scene wherever he happened to venture. He went to more than 20 rehabilitation clinics over 9 years to try and get clean while struggling to be around for his son Elijah, until he managed to pull through and turn his life around forever. He is now one of the most sought after and influential drug counsellors in America who has help the likes of so many big musicians transform their lives including Hole's Courtney Love and Red Hot Chili Peppers' Anthony Kiedis.

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Flea Gives Thom Yorke Surfing Lessons


Thom Yorke Atoms For Peace Flea

Thom Yorke has revealed that he’s being given surf lessons by one of his Atoms For Peace band members. I bet you can guess which one – no, it’s not Nigel Godrich.

In an interview with The Observer, the Radiohead front man, whose Atoms For Peace project released debut LP AMOK today (February 25, 2013), revealed that he’d been taking surfing lessons from bassist Flea – who also plays in the Red Hot Chili Peppers. "I used always to try to force things, in the studio,” Yorke said, comparing his music with his new found interest in surfing. “But it's like, you can sit out there on a board for ages waiting for the right wave to come along. You can't get angry about it. You know it will happen eventually and you start to understand the waiting itself might be part of it. Part of the fun."

Atoms For Peace streamed their album AMOK last week on their official site amid rumors that it had been leaked already, while Yorke and Godrich have since played in London (February 22, 2013) in order to launch the record officially. In the same interview, Yorke revealed that the idea to get an album together under the Atoms For Peace moniker came about in the wake of several US shows in support of his 2006 solo album The Eraser.  "I had these very small ideas," Yorke said, "just beats mostly. And we just played off them for about three days solid."

Continue reading: Flea Gives Thom Yorke Surfing Lessons

Atoms For Peace Release AMOK Today; But How Do Thom Yorke & Co. Fare With The Critics?


Thom Yorke Atoms For Peace Nigel Godrich Flea

Much as My Bloody Valentine did by dropping their latest album at a couple of days notice, so Thom Yorke’s Atoms For Peace have sent the music press scurrying to desperately make their opinion public first, in light of the release of their debut album together, AMOK.

Atoms For Peace, which includes Radiohead front man Thom Yorke, as well as producer Nigel Godrich and Red Hot Chili Peppers bassist Flea, among others, streamed their album for a limited time on their official site last week ahead of its official release today (February 25, 2013), following reports that it had been leaked onto the internet, and the group have since played their first show in it's support – appearing in London last Friday (February 22, 2013). But what do the critics think of the LP? Opinion seems divided; Uncut magazine couldn’t be more effusive in their praise, writing “A team of skilled journeymen falling in behind an enigmatic guru and his ominous yet often curiously groovy vision.” Clash Magazine back that up, claiming “Amok provides a murky and complicated landscape that sounds like very little else - except the scorched testing ground from which we’ll witness Yorke deservedly going atomic once again.”

However, The Daily Telegraph aren’t so convinced; they say “Yorke seems to have become increasingly conflicted about the very idea of communication, his fondness for cliché indicating a tendency towards self-sabotage.” Their sentiments are backed up by Pitchfork, who write “No doubt these songs will go down a storm in a live setting. But, given the caliber of players Yorke has on hand this time around, it's disappointing that we still have to make that assumption.” Among the chances that Atoms For Peace have to convince live include Melt Festival in Germany, where they’ve recently been confirmed as headliners for the weekend of July 19-21st.

Continue reading: Atoms For Peace Release AMOK Today; But How Do Thom Yorke & Co. Fare With The Critics?

Patti Smith: Dream of Life Review


Weak
The music of Patti Smith slaps you in the face with its energy, audacity, and fearlessness. Its raw intensity of uncharted punk, the incantatory ritual poetry of her lyrics, and Smith's lone wolf, damning presence reminiscent of mid-'60s Dylan all fuse into an atom bomb explosion of incendiary rock and transcendent poetry, a true icon of rock, or, as Smith ruefully remarks in Steven Sebring's reverent profile, Patti Smith: Dream of Life, "How does it feel to be a rock icon? I always think of Mount Rushmore."

Sebring spent 11 years filming Smith, from her Gone Again comeback album after leaving music behind to raise a family (husband Fred Sonic Smith and two children Jackson and Jesse) in a home in Detroit up to a few years ago, where she is seen raging against the criminal acts of George W. Bush. The center point of the film is a cluttered room filled with memorabilia from Smith's life, the room getting more and more cluttered with detritus (like the cover of Bringing It All Back Home) as the years and the film wear on and she comments on her life and times.

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American Hardcore Review


Good
If punk took years to get its deserved kudos from the establishment -- though now enshrined as a marketable commodity, it was long shunned by shibboleths like MTV and Rolling Stone -- there's little telling how long hardcore will take to get even a fraction of the same recognition. The fact that a relatively small number of people reading this will even know the difference is just one sign of how far the long-moribund sub-genre has to go before even approaching mainstream recognition. In the meantime, Paul Rachman's encyclopedic and exhausting American Hardcore will serve as a decent chronicle of hardcore's sharp short years festering in the American underground.

Though punk was a reaction to the safe, staid, cash-register mentality of the '70s arena-sized music scene, it found itself all too quickly co-opted into the industry. Groups like the Sex Pistols disintegrated, The Clash morphed into an adventurous roots-rock, pseudo-ska outfit that started playing radio-friendly hits in arena gigs of their own, and The Ramones, well, they just stayed doing what they always did, never more or less popular than when they started. When the 1980s dawned, music seemed just as escapist as ever, only now many of the outfits were New Wave, punk's bastard offspring, retaining some of the adventurous musicality and edgy fashion sense but little if any of the antiestablishment anger. With a clenched-fist conservative like Reagan in charge, and a mainstream culture just as lobotomized as that of the previous decade, American punks realized there wasn't going to be another Clash coming around, and if they wanted more music of its raging ilk, they'd have to create it on their own. Enter hardcore.

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All We Are Saying Review


Grim
Here's an intriguing and potentially electrifying documentary concept: Rosanna Arquette gets the lowdown on life in the music biz by chatting with A-list rock stars, including Sting, Steven Tyler, Gwen Stefani, Tom Petty, Yoko Ono, Stevie Nicks, Thom Yorke, Elton John, Mr. and Mrs. Sonic Youth, and a dozen others from the '60s through the '90s. This is gonna be great, right?

Sadly, producer, director, and "experiencer" Arquette did exactly one thing well: the title. All We Are Saying is appropriately a dull, bloated gab marathon. And since she didn't clear the featured artists' music for the movie, it's all talk, no song, not even a few bars from a stage performance. Imagine The Aristocrats without the joke, stretched out over 105 minutes.

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We Jam Econo: The Story of the Minutemen Review


Excellent
The Minutemen, a trio from San Pedro, California, may not have been the best or most influential group to emerge from America's punk scene in the '80s. But no band worked harder to press the point that punk was a system of beliefs, not just a sound. While most hardcore bands at the time knocked out repetitive, machine-gun beats, drummer George Hurley played splattery, jazz-influenced rhythms; Mike Watt played bass like he'd wandered off George Clinton's Mothership; and guitarist-singer D. Boon rattled off tangled, politicized lyrics that scanned more like Beat poetry than anti-Reagan screeds. When Boon died in a van accident shortly before Christmas 1985, at the age of 27, it was like the scene severed a tendon -- a flexibility that once was there was permanently gone.

Tim Irwin's smart, funny, and affecting documentary about the band makes no great claims about the Minutemen's genius -- in fact, he leaves ample room for numerous scenesters at the time who scratched their heads at the group's look and sound. Instead he concentrates on the close friendship between Boon and Watt, childhood friends who put together a punk band not so much because they loved the Ramones or the Clash but because they loved the idea of creating their own culture out of whole cloth. They were comically naïve at first, thinking that basic stuff like tuning wasn't essential; some guitarists liked their strings "loose," they figured, while others preferred them "tight." But soon enough they'd invented a spiky, insistent sound that packed a surprising amount of movement into very brief tunes with provocative titles like "Little Man With a Gun in His Hand," "Bob Dylan Wrote Propaganda Songs," and "Jesus and Tequila." (Most listeners figured they were called the Minutemen because their songs often clocked in at under 60 seconds, though Watt debunks that notion in the film.)

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My Own Private Idaho Review


Extraordinary
Mike Waters (River Phoenix) is a narcoleptic street hustler who lives in the bus terminal, streets, and abandoned buildings of Portland, Oregon, and who dreams of one day finding his mother. Fellow hustler Scott Favor (Keanu Reeves) takes care of Mike - he hauls the other man to safety when a sudden sleeping spell comes upon him, usually triggered by stress or memories of home - and although he too lives in the streets and makes a living accommodating the sexual whims of paying customers, he's the scion of a wealthy and powerful Portland family with every reason to believe that that wealth and power will one day be his own. Mike's in love with Scott; he says as much one night when Scott is explaining that love is something customers pay you to provide. "I love you and you don't pay me," Mike counters. In this lowlife milieu, such a bare declaration amounts to an act of grace. But Scott lets it pass and the moment slides by.

Phoenix, in interviews, was clearly thrilled when writer/director Gus Van Sant credited him with having written this scene in Van Sant's wonderful 1991 movie My Own Private Idaho. He should have been. Emotionally, it's a doozy, and it serves as the point at which these two fractured lives separate into their own trajectories. Mike's takes him back again and again to the same dogged search for love and the same stretch of empty highway. Scott's takes him to Italy, where he falls in love with the beautiful Carmella (Chiara Caselli) and, ultimately, to an encounter in Portland with his street mentor Bob (William Richert). Here the movie takes an unexpected Shakespearean turn as Van Sant lifts fragments from Henry IV, casting Scott as Prince Hal to Bob's Falstaff, even as Mike's story continues on in the real world. We know from Shakespeare that Scott will turn his back on his old friends and assume the throne in the end. If Mike is heartbroken it's because life in the real world is hard; that's why we have private ones.

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The Wild Thornberrys Movie Review


Excellent
Considering that I have not watched a Nickelodeon show since Double Dare, I didn't know what to expect from The Wild Thornberrys Movie, based on a popular cartoon from the network. Surprisingly, the film is a hilarious adventure and I shamelessly enjoyed it. The primary audience for this one is kids 12 and under, but directors Cathy Malkasian and Jeff McGrath really took big kids like me into consideration when they put this animated extravaganza together. It features a fantastic score composed by Paul Simon, appropriate to its sub-Saharan setting and is accompanied by a splendid new song from The Dave Matthews Band. Its progressive themes of ecological preservation and racial tolerance also add to the warm tingly nostalgic feeling of the film, but it never gets too cheesy. Let's just say that the Disneyfication of this one is kept to a minimum. It even has a PG rating.

The story follows the Thornberrys, a hodge-podge British family of three generations all living in one souped-up trailer home, as they travel throughout the world documenting nature's wonders. Our protagonist is young Eliza (Lacey Chabert), who has been given a magical gift to talk to animals. Eliza is the quintessential loner, as she is more content with her animal friends than her family's rules and constantly seeks adventure. Along with her chimpanzee companion Darwin (Tom Kane), she manages to get into trouble when she recklessly takes the baby cheetah Akela past the safe boundaries of the desert. Sure enough, malicious poachers snatch up Akela from a helicopter, and despite Eliza's heroic efforts, she's unable to save the cub. Heartbroken and facing rebuke from her bewildered parents, Eliza is shipped off to boarding in school in England. Trapped in the confines of "civilization," Eliza vows to find the lost cheetah cub and to return to her family where she rightfully belongs.

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Rugrats Go Wild! Review


Terrible
You would have figured that with a show and movie series as delightfully cynical as Rugrats would have had the foresight to see that naming a movie with "Go Wild" in the title is just asking for insult. The similarities between the "Wild" movies go beyond the titles. Both take place in exotic getaway spots (a deserted island / a deserted alley outside a cheap New Orleans bar in Mardi Gras). Both involve a large cast of characters whose names you don't remember and whose voice you can barely make out through the sucking, slurping, or slurring of something or another. Oh yeah, and both are an utter waste of time unless your mind can't discern between binki-ness and kinkiness.

As if your kid will care, Rugrats Go Wild! is a cross between the shows Rugrats and The Wild Thornberrys, in which a Rugrats family vacation leads to being stranded on a deserted island. The only other inhabitants are the Thornberrys, a dysfunctional set of explorers with a souped-up RV that makes the new Lexus SUVs look like bumper cars. The adults get the idea to start going Lord of the Flies. The babies get the idea to start going exploring, and I get the idea to leave the theatre before dealing with an extra hour and a half of wasted time.

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