Monday, February 29, 2016


Athens, Ga.’s Mothers stopped by the Paste Studio recently to record a few tracks off of their upcoming debut full-length, When You Walk a Long Distance You Are Tired, recorded at the much-lauded Chase Park Transduction studio in their hometown.

Started in 2013 as the solo project of Kristine Leschper (who still serves as the band’s vocalist/songwriter/guitarist), Mothers has since become a full blown four-piece and opened for of Montreal on tour.

Sunday, February 21, 2016

Stevie Wonder & Pentatonix - "That's The Way Of The World"

"That's the Way of the World" is a 1975 song by the R&B band Earth, Wind & Fire and is also the title track of their album That's the Way of the World. Written by Maurice White, Charles Stepney and Verdine White for Columbia Records, "That's the Way of the World" was released as a single in many countries and reached number 12 and number 5 on the US Pop and Black Singles charts respectively. It ranked #337 on Rolling Stone's 500 Greatest Songs of All Time list.

Saturday, February 20, 2016

Thursday, February 11, 2016

OK Go's "Upside Down & Inside Out" and The First Direct Detection of Gravitational Waves

"We also came up with a system for doing a single take over eight parabolas. In each flight you have 15 parabolas and in each parabola you have 20 seconds of double gravity, then 50 seconds of weightlessness and few minutes of setting it all up again. So to make it one take, we took eight of these in a row over 40-45 minutes."

OK Go - Upside Down & Inside Out
Hello, Dear Ones. Please enjoy our new video for "Upside Down & Inside Out". A million thanks to S7 Airlines. #GravitysJustAHabit
Posted by OK Go on Thursday, February 11, 2016

Since Albert Einstein first predicted their existence a century ago, physicists have been on the hunt for gravitational waves, ripples in the fabric of spacetime. That hunt is now over. Gravitational waves exist, and we’ve found them.

That’s according to researchers at the Laser Interferometer Gravitational Wave Observatory (LIGO), who have been holed up for weeks, working round-the-clock to confirm that the very first direct detection of gravitational waves is the real deal. False signals have been detected before, and even though the rumors first reported by Gizmodo have been flying for a month, the LIGO team wanted to be absolutely certain before making an official announcement.

That announcement has just come. Gravitational waves were observed on September 14th, 2015, at 5:51 am ET by both of the LIGO detectors, located in Livingston, Louisiana, and Hanford, Washington. The source? A supermassive black hole collision that took place 1.3 billion years ago. When it occurred, about three times the mass of the sun was converted to energy in a fraction of a second.

The discovery has been accepted for publication in Physical Review Letters.

Gravitational waves are ripples in the universe caused by some of the most energetic cosmic events, from exploding stars to supermassive black hole mergers. As they propagate through space and time, gravitational waves cause tiny tremors in atoms that make up matter. While Einstein predicted them in his general theory of relativity in 1916, and their existence was indirectly demonstrated in the 1980s, it wasn’t until the LIGO detector came online in 2002 that the hunt for elusive spacetime ripples started to get serious.

But the first generation LIGO experiment, which ran for eight years, wasn’t sensitive enough. Which is understandable. Gravitational waves are minuscule— the atomic jitters that pass through our world when two black holes bash together in a distant galaxy are on the order of a billionth of a billionth the diameter of an atom. LIGO detects them by proxy, using high powered lasers to measure tiny changes in the distance between two objects positioned thousands of miles apart. A million things can screw this up, including a rumbling freight train, a tremor in the Earth, and the inconvenient reality that all objects with a temperature above absolute zero are vibrating all the time.

After a series of upgrades that lasted from 2010 to 2015, LIGO was back online this past fall. With more powerful lasers and improved system for isolating the experiment from vibrations in the ground, the prospects of detecting the first gravitational waves have never looked better. Some scientists even predicted that we’d have our first positive detection in 2016—but few could have known how quickly it would come.

In fact, LIGO saw gravitational waves almost immediately. The team then spent the entire fall exhaustively investigating potential instrumental and environmental disturbances to confirm that the signal was real.

According to Einstein’s theory of relativity, when a pair of black holes orbit on another, they lose energy slowly, causing them to creep gradually closer. In the final minutes of their merger, they speed up considerably, until finally, moving at about half the speed of light, they bash together, forming a larger black hole. A tremendous burst of energy is released, propagating through space as gravitational waves.

The two black holes behind the all the hubbub are 29 and 36 times the mass of the Sun, respectively. During the peak of their cosmic collision, LIGO researchers estimate that their power output was 50 times that of the entire visible universe.

“The description of this observation is beautifully described in the Einstein theory of general relativity formulated 100 years ago and comprises the first test of the theory in strong gravitation,” said Rainer Weiss, who first proposed LIGO as a means of detecting gravitational waves in the 1980s. “It would have been wonderful to watch Einstein’s face had we been able to tell him.”

The discovery of gravitational waves has been an open secret for weeks now. The scientists’ own excitement got the better of them on several occasions, including last week, when theoretical physicist Clifford Burgess at McMaster University in Hamilton, Canada, sent an email to his entire department, telling them that LIGO had found a real, and “spectacular,” signal of two large black holes merging.

Now, the muzzle has been lifted and the physicists can geek out at the top of their lungs. Keep an eye on social media today, it should be a ruckus.

The discovery of gravitational waves confirms an important aspect of the theory of relativity, but it does much more than that. Quite literally, it opens up a new chapter in our exploration of the cosmos, one where electromagnetic radiation is no longer our only tool for “seeing” the universe. As MIT astrophysicist Scott Hughes told Gizmodo in a phone interview, we can use gravitational waves to probe mysterious celestial objects like black holes and neutron stars, which typically no light.

“There’s a lot of rich information encoded in gravitational waves,” he said, noting that the shape of a spacetime ripple can tell us about the size and motion of the object that produced it. “As an astronomer, I try to think about how to go from the ‘sound’ of the waveform that LIGO measures, to the parameters that produce that waveform.”

Hughes also notes that once our detectors are sensitive enough to catch gravitational waves regularly, we can start to build a census of the universe’s most energetic events. “Actually getting some demographic data is one of the key things we hope to do in an era of detection,” he said.

“Whenever first detection happens, there’s gonna be a party, no question,” he continued. “But after that, when detection becomes routine, is when things start getting really interesting.”

A century-long hunt is over. But a new cosmic exploration is just beginning.

More information:
» Gizmodo: "Why Finding Gravitational Waves Would Be Such a Big Deal"

Monday, February 8, 2016

Super Bowl 50

Peyton Manning: "I'll take some time to reflect. I got a couple priorities first. I'm going to go kiss my wife and kids. I want to hug my family. I'm going to drink a lot of Budweiser tonight."

With his second Super Bowl ring, Manning...
  • became the first quarterback to win 200 games (regular season and playoffs), breaking a tie with Brett Favre.
  • became the first starting quarterback to lead two different teams to a Super Bowl win.
  • raised his career postseason record to 14-13, which would give him the third most playoff wins of all time (he'd be tied with Terry Bradshaw and John Elway)
  • became the fourth quarterback to win a Super Bowl with two different head coaches (also: Joe Montana, Troy Aikman, and Ben Roethlisberger).
  • became the oldest quarterback to win a Super Bowl, passing his boss John Elway, who won at age 38.

Denver Broncos 24 : 10 Carolina Panthers
SANTA CLARA, Calif. -- Von Miller forced two fumbles to set up Denver's two touchdowns and the Broncos defense frustrated Cam Newton all game to carry Peyton Manning to his second Super Bowl title with a 24-10 victory over the Carolina Panthers on Sunday. Manning threw for just 141 yards and committed two turnovers in one of the least productive games of his brilliant career that could be coming to an end. But with Miller leading a defense that recorded a Super Bowl record-tying seven sacks and forced four turnovers for the Broncos (15-4), Manning ended an up-and-down, injury-riddled season with another title to go with the one he won with Indianapolis nine years ago. Newton's MVP season ended in disappointment for the Panthers (17-2). He lost two fumbles, threw an interception and failed to produce a touchdown for the only time this season.

"Denver led the NFL in fewest yards allowed and pass the eye test. And they are led by Wade Phillips, one of the best defensive coordinators in NFL history. The Panthers, meanwhile, were the league's top-scoring team. Led by Cam Newton's MVP-caliber season, they have successfully made the transition to an explosive offensive team. No running game has more "base" running plays that look similar but have nearly infinite variations.

We are more convinced than ever that this will be Manning's last season. Common sense says no, but Manning has left plenty of signs. His decision to soak up the afterglow Sunday with his entire family on the field in Denver was telling. His son Marshall joined him at the podium after the win over the Patriots. Even Archie Manning believes this is it for Peyton, although he insists his son hasn't said a word.

This has been Cam Newton's season. He's going to win the MVP and the Panthers are one tough loss to the Falcons away from being undefeated entering this game. This feels like Newton's championship season. But feelings before the Super Bowl are overrated. Just ask the 2001 Rams or the 2007 Patriots. It's up to Newton to earn his coronation."

  • In case you missed it: This will be the only time in NFL history that the game’s two starting quarterbacks were the No. 1 picks in their respective drafts.. The 2011 draft is also the first draft to have its No. 1 (Cam) and No. 2 picks (Von Miller) face off in the Super Bowl. It's also the third straight year that the NFL's top-seeded playoff teams have reached the Super Bowl. It's good to be chalk!
  • Newton is 26. Manning is 39. The quarterback age gap in this game is greater than any matchup in Super Bowl history.
  • Ronald Reagan was president -- and Cam Newton wasn't yet born -- the last time a Heisman-winning signal caller played in the Super Bowl. It was January 1984 and Jim Plunkett was competing in Super Bowl XVIII. 
  • Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning is currently tied in first with Brett Favre for career quarterback wins (199). If this ends up being Manning’s final year in the NFL, a Super Bowl win would just put him over the top. Eighteen-year vet Manning is also the first signal caller ever to lead multiple franchises to the ’ship multiple times.
  • Assuming that he does indeed start next month, Peyton Manning will have had the bleakest regular-season TD/INT ratio (nine touchdowns, 17 interceptions) of any starting signal caller since the 1970’s. Vince Ferragamo of Super Bowl XIV beat him out, having tallied just five touchdowns to his 10 interceptions back in 1979.
  • This is Demarcus Ware's first Super Bowl in a potential Hall of Fame career. Thomas Davis, coming off a broken arm, is one of the most inspirational figures from the last decade in the NFL. Von Miller is building an all-time great career and is coming off an all-time great performance. Miller was otherworldly, slashing past Patriots right tackle Marcus Cannon for a gameplan-crushing 2.5 sacks, which set a single-game playoff record for the Super Bowl-bound Broncos. Miller also set up Denver's second touchdown with an athletic interception of Brady, who absorbed a whopping 19 hits, the most on a quarterback in a single game since 2006, when Cleveland's Charlie Frye was hit 20 times by the Ravens.
  • Broncos general manager John Elway looked at his team after they lost Super Bowl XLVIII to Seattle and vowed to become tougher. He wanted a team that looked more like the defense and running heavy squads he won the Super Bowl with in the late 1990s. Just two years later, his vision has been realized. The defense is loaded with Elway draft picks, not to mention free agent signings like DeMarcus Ware, T.J. Ward and Aqib Talib. 
  • Both the Panthers’ Ron Rivera and the Broncos’ Gary Kubiak dethroned the same guy -- John Fox -- to earn their respective head coaching positions.
  • While Carolina went 15-1 in the regular season, just two of the six past clubs that notched at least 15 pre-playoffs victories went on to win the title: the 1984 San Francisco 49ers and the 1985 Chicago Bears (which Panthers coach Ron Rivera just happened to be on).
  • When the team steps on the field in February, Carolina will be the first NFC South franchise ever to play in more than one Super Bowl. 
  • If we include the postseason, the Panthers currently have a .500 all-time record (175-175-1). If they do manage to win it all this year, the Santa Clara victory would bump the franchise up to a winning record for the first time since 1998.
  • If the MVP race goes as expected and the Panthers claim the title, Newton will become the first signal caller in history to have brought home the Heisman, National Championship, NFL MVP and Super Bowl trophies.

More information:
» "Seven big storylines heading into Super Bowl 50"
» Huffington Post: "17 Fun Tidbits About the Super Bowl 50 That Will Get You Hyped"
» Maurice Jones-Drew and Ike Taylor: "Why Cam Newton's Panthers won't win Super Bowl 50"
» CBS Sports: "11 stats to arm yourself with for Panthers-Broncos title game"
» Deadspin: "Nobody Much Likes Losing"