January 9, 2013 |
COOMA, Australia - Temperatures cooled from record highs across much of southern Australia on Wednesday, reducing the danger from scores of wildfires that have blazed for days. Australia recorded its hottest day on record Monday with a nationwide average of 104.59 Fahrenheit, breaking a 1972 record of 104.31. The Bureau of Meteorology will calculate later Wednesday whether Tuesday's average was even hotter. No deaths have been reported, although about 100 people have not been accounted for since last week when a fire destroyed about 90 homes in the Tasmanian town of Dunalley.
January 8, 2013 |
Lawyers for a Northeast Philadelphia man - charged with the 2010 road-rage killing of a pedestrian who was slow crossing the street in front of his father's SUV - told a Philadelphia jury today the death was an accident Gerald Shaffer Jr. tried to prevent. Defense attorney Coley O. Reynolds said the mortal injuries that killed 54-year-old Mark Wallace occurred when Shaffer, 23, tried to break up a fight between Wallace and Shaffer's father, Gerard "Gerry" Sr., a Philadelphia firefighter.
December 14, 2012 |
A talk with Mike Tyson is . . . an uneasy thing. Will he go off? Is he still the barely contained human detonation of the 1980s and 1990s? Tyson, speaking by phone Tuesday from his home in Las Vegas, says he's changed. "That's what recovery is," he says, "changing your mind and your way of life, getting away from our lower selves. You have to transcend. " He'll have a chance to show Philadelphia the Mike Tyson of 2013 when his Spike Lee-directed one-man stage show, Mike Tyson: Undisputed Truth , comes May 2 to the Academy of Music - yes, Mike Tyson at the Academy of Music.
December 5, 2012 |
BEIRUT - Fighting between rebels and government forces raged near the Syrian capital Damascus on Monday, forcing an inbound commercial jet to turn back while the U.N. said it was withdrawing staff because of deteriorating security conditions. Lebanese security officials said Jihad Makdissi, a polished Foreign Ministry spokesman known for defending the regime of President Bashar al-Assad in fluent English, flew from Beirut to London. But it was not immediately clear whether he had defected.
December 3, 2012 |
BEIRUT - Syrian warplanes and artillery blasted parts of Damascus and its rebellious suburbs on Sunday, part of what activists described as intense fighting as rebels try to push their way into the center of President Bashar al-Assad's power base. In central Syria, a car bomb killed at least 15 people, the official news agency reported. The fighting over the last few weeks in Damascus is the most serious in the capital since July, when rebels captured several neighborhoods before a swift government counteroffensive swept them out. The Britain-based activist group Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said fighter jets struck twice in the suburb of Daraya as regime artillery pounded other districts just south of Damascus.
December 1, 2012 |
Rock and roll hath no fury like the sound of Neil Young & Crazy Horse. "I might pick up a pen, scribble on a page / Try to make sense of my inner rage," the enduring 67-year-old guitarist and songwriter sang in "I'm From Ontario" early in a hellacious, 13-song, two-hour-plus show that went on ringing in satisfied customers' ears long after they exited the Wells Fargo Center on Thursday night. With his longtime cohorts Crazy Horse - the primeval trio of guitarist Frank "Pancho" Sampedro, drummer Ralph Molina, and bass player Billy Talbot, with whom Young released both the covers album Americana and double-disc of originals Psychedelic Pill this year - Young lets his inner rage roar through a maelstrom of unapologetically unkempt guitar noise.
November 23, 2012 |
SANDY BROUGHT the seawater, and Kevin McCarty's bringing the suds for one last party in his storm-swamped house in Brigantine before the wrecking ball comes. McCarty, a 30-year-old artist, bought his Cape Cod on the island a few years ago and dumped all his savings into remodeling it. On a recent morning before Thanksgiving, his cold, bare living room resembled an art gallery before a big show, except for the faint smell of mildew in the air and the rolls of paper towels stacked up along the buckling wood floor.
November 21, 2012 |
JERUSALEM - Israel and the extremist group Hamas edged closer to a cease-fire Tuesday, but after a day of furious diplomatic efforts involving the U.S. secretary of state, U.N. chief, and Egypt's president, a deal remained elusive and fighting raged on both sides of the border. Israeli tanks and gunboats pummeled targets in Gaza in what appeared to be a last-minute burst of fire, while at least 200 rockets were fired into Israel. As talks dragged on near midnight, Israeli and Hamas officials, communicating through Egyptian mediators, expressed hope that a deal would soon be reached, but cautioned that it was far from certain.
November 8, 2012 |
JOINT BASE LEWIS-McCHORD, Wash. - A U.S. agent who investigated the massacre of 16 civilians in southern Afghanistan in March recounted the volatile reaction from local villagers Wednesday and said it was three weeks before American forces could visit the crime scenes less than a mile from a remote base. By that time, bodies had been buried and bloodstains had been scraped from the walls, Special Agent Matthew Hoffman of the Army's Criminal Investigation Command said Wednesday. Other stains remained, on walls and floors.
October 15, 2012 |
Allow this humble narrator to correct a misapprehension held by listeners who don't know Swans intimately. Michael Gira's shifting membership noise rock ensemble does not embrace doom or gloom in its sound or lyrics. During its nearly 30 years of an on-and-off existence, there's certainly been dread, existential or otherwise, in Gira's incendiary words, his handsomely low vocals, and his thunderously looming sound-scapes. But there are God, love, and bright shards of luminescence in the bandleader's dense, abrasive shadow play as well.