Tag Archive | Justin Timberlake

Former Pop Hit Factory Taken Over by Dirty Punks

By now we’re all familiar with the rise and fall of pop music svengali Lou Pearlman, the man whose dreams of continually populating our culture with cadres of tween boys in phat pants and upside down golf visors crumbled like so much coffee cake when the government learned of the massive Ponzi scheme Pearlman was simultaneously running. Lou’s currently serving a twenty-fiver, though the stars he so carefully nurtured remain on our landscape—well, most of them, anyway (C-Note, please pick up the white courtesy phone).

And what of Trans Continental Studios, Lou’s massive Orlando-area recording complex, the studios once haunted by pre-Federline Britney, pre-“Dick in a Box” Timberlake, and even a few non-Pearlman-bred talents such as R. Kelly and Eminem? Techies will be happy to know Trans Con Studios are not only still standing but fully operational. Obviously now under new management and re-christened KDS Studios, the wonderland’s most recent clients include my friend Matt’s punk band Grave Return. Those in Jamlando probably know Grave Return best for their controversial t-shirt depicting slain toddler Caylee Anthony in zombie form. Of course, if you really have a problem with the image on that garment I’d advise you never look at any heavy metal album cover ever for the rest of your life.

But I digress.

“We’ve been recording mainly in Studio B,” Matt told me recently. “It’s a pretty standard room, but we might do the mixing in Studio A, which is the big ridiculous place where it looks like Justin Timberlake did some bullshit with Metallica.”

Outfitted with never-ending control panels and all manner of lavish decoration suggesting the spoils of pop success, Studio A sounds on par with the bridge of the Starship Enterprise. I’m sure no one from Pearlman’s regime ever imagined hardcore punks would be allowed to use their facilities to record eight originals and a Christian Death cover. I’d sure no one from Pearlman’s regime ever heard of Christian Death (okay, maybe J. Fatone).

Grave Return hopes to wrap things at KDS by March or April—the members all have day jobs, and with no record label breathing down their neck, the band has the luxury to take their time with the recording. That’s their official line, but come on, you’d probably want to stretch out your time too if you were farting around the castle where *NSYNC put the finishing touches on No Strings Attached and Creed mapped out parts of their Grammy-nominated (yuck!) album Weathered. There’s also a chance R. Kelly cut “Feelin’ On Yo Booty” at Trans Con. I’d never want to leave.

And so it’s come to pass: the house that Pearlman built is now accepting dirty, no good punk rockers. Schmohawks, apply within and maybe you can rest your feet on some coffee table where Robert Kelly probably once did tons of yay.

Unsolicited Soc Network Review

The Social Network
Starring: Jesse Eisenberg, Andrew Garfield, Justin Timberlake, Rashida Jones
Directed by David Fincher

The friends you make in college are the ones you hang onto for life, they say—unless you inadvertently create an immensely profitable cultural touchstone with your stupid little drinking buddies, in which case you’ll probably all end up bitter enemies engaged in soul-draining legal battles. This is what David Fincher’s Social Network teaches us; money changes everything. Also, power corrupts, absolute power corrupts absolutely, and true men of Harvard avoid suing each other until they start to lose rowing competitions (file it under “emotional distress”).

Jesse Eisenberg plays Mark Zuckerberg, an insular code jockey who may or may not have swiped the idea for “the Facebook” (i.e. some bullshit on the computer where you can look at pictures of people you might wanna diddle) from a few less ambitious Ivy Leaguers. Zuckerberg’s partner from the beginning is Eduardo Saverin, who Andrew Garfield portrays as a likable kid saddled with the thankless task of somehow monetizing his friend’s upstart dot com. This sets the stage for Justin Timberlake’s turn as flashy Napster co-founder Sean Parker. Parker sees potential in the pair’s little Facebook thing and throws a load of cash at them. That’s when the real problems start.

Basically just another movie about the emotional / monetary perils of being a goddamn Yuppie, The Social Network works thanks to the finely-tuned performances of the main cast and Fincher’s expectedly great directing. It’s true, there isn’t much resolution in the end—no smoking gun proves any character was right or wrong in their actions—but you’ll probably still find yourself rather engrossed in the business drama of our current decade. And hey, they threw a Gluecifer song in there, too, so you can’t hate on that.

FINAL SCORE: Three and a half coke-snorting Timberlakes (out of four).