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FourPlay with Digital Journal: Reviewing Sites, Sounds, Words and Minds

Digital Journal — Get the quick and dirty from Digital Journal‘s FourPlay section! Take a look at hot websites, cool music, good books and the people that keep popping up in the news. Digital Journal showcases the Sites, Sounds, Words and Minds of today and tomorrow!

Live Music Without the Ticket Price
The name says it all: concerts streamed mainly in RealAudio format, from Franz Ferdinand to Kid Koala — and it’s free. The kind folks at CBC also offer studio sessions from the likes of Joel Plaskett and Peaches, turning the staid national broadcaster into a friend of any shaggy-haired indie-band lover.

News Under the Radar
A guy swallowing a toothbrush. The World Testicle Cooking Championship. Supermarket carts with DVD players. Find all this and more under the “Quirkies” section on news site, where weird is the course du jour. Ananova’s video reports and bizarre breaking news make CNN look like a boring uncle.

View from the Gallery One
Innovative art meets Pink Floyd-ish ambient music in a breathtaking DVD featuring two artists combining their talents. The camera pans over surrealist paintings by Canadian artist Robert Vanderhost while dreamy melodies provide the soundtrack, courtesy of enigmatic electro-composer Nash the Slash.

Selections from The Essential Classical Recordings
Paring down his master list of 101 indispensable CDs into just two discs, CBC Radio host Rick Phillips offers a fantastic primer for novice classical fans. From Brahms to Wagner, these tracks serve as the ultimate cerebral nourishment when acid jazz just won’t cut it.

Animation Now! by Julius Wiedemann. Taschen, 2004. 574 pp, $59.95 ISBN 3-8228-2588-3
Even if you’re not an animator but you love every frame in Princess Mononoke, this encyclopedia of prominent studios and artists is filled with dazzling photos and informative bios. Arranged alphabetically, Animation Now! lists filmographies, awards received and contact info for dozens of studios, proving that Dreamworks is just one piece of the pixellated puzzle.

Great Feuds in Technology: Ten of the Liveliest Disputes Ever by Hal Hellman. John Wiley & Sons, 2004. 206 pp, $36 ISBN 0-471-20867-1
Inventors can occasionally be as aggressive as the most power-hungry politicians. Hal Hellman looks at how technology inventors battled each other for control over ideas. Ten stories chronicle such conflicts as the David-and-Goliath match-up between competing television pioneers David Sarnoff and Philo T. Farnsworth. Great Feuds in Technology uncovers the legal wars and bruised egos that hobble inventors’ easy rides to business bliss. Consider these stories the Wrestlemanias of the tech world.

Graydon Carter
Crowned with his trademark wisp of white hair, Vanity Fair editor Graydon Carter has more than celebrities on his mind. The 55-year-old Canadian recently wrote a book with a title that would give any Democrat a wistful smile: What We’ve Lost: How The Bush Administration Has Curtailed Our Freedoms, Mortgaged Our Economy, Ravaged Our Environment, and Damaged Our Standing in the World (Little Brown).

k-os (Kevin Breton)
A Toronto rapper not afraid to attack hip-hop’s thuggish pretences, k-os is breaking into the U.S. market with scorching tracks like “B-Boy Stance” and “Crabbuckit.” Yes, there is intelligent hip-hop out there and k-os is its lyrical ambassador.

This article is part of Digital Journal’s national magazine edition. Pick up your copy of Digital Journal in bookstores across Canada. Or subscribe to Digital Journal now, and receive 8 issues for $29.95 + GST ($48.95 USD).

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