Episode 98: Fleet Foxes, Pac-Man Pizza, and a Michelin Man

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Robin Pecknold of Fleet Foxes/Photo by Sean Pecknold

This week: Fleet Foxes frontman Robin Pecknold talks Hymnals and hair… Gaming gets a ladies’ Man… And three stars are borne – by master chef Paul Liebrandt. Plus, a joke from street artiste Shepard Fairey, and a dreamy tune by Dirty Projectors.

Icebreaker: Shepard Fairey
Shepard Fairey — the acclaimed graphic artist behind the iconic Barack Obama “Hope” poster – pitches us a joke. Shepard’s work is featured at the L.A. Museum of Contemporary Art’s massive exhibit Art in the Streets and the new street art documentary Outside In.

Small Talk: Made in America
Aaron Britt, senior editor at Dwell, gives us a sneak peak at the mag’s October 2011 issue and tells us that we’ve still got it “Made in America”… if you’re in the market for an upscale nail clipper. (SoCal listeners – catch Aaron at next month’s Dwell on Design conference.)

A History Lesson with Booze: The birth of Pac-Man & the “Pac-Man”
This week back in 1980, Japanese video game designer Toru Iwatani helped arcades go co-ed…by inventing a game for gals. Feast your ears upon the story of Pac-Man, then gobble up this eponymous custom cocktail:

The Pac Man, by Kentaro Wada

“Pac-Man,” as cooked up by bartender Kentaro Wada at the Shiba Park Hotel’s Bar Fifteen in Tokyo.

In a shaker, add:

  • 1 oz. vodka
  • 4 fresh basil leaves (muddled gently with the vodka)
  • 1.5 oz. Pineapple juice
  • 1.5 oz. Orange Juice

Prepare a low ball glass with a rim of salt and Parmesan cheese (mixed).

Add the biggest ice cube(s) you can find. (Kentaro uses a large, glass-sized ice ball that looks like Pac-Man’s power pill). Shake the mixture and strain into the glass. Then garnish with a toothpick skewered with:

  • 1 leaf of fresh basil
  • wedge of mini tomato
  • 1 black olive

Serve to friends for 25 cents per glass. Chase with ghosts.

Guest of Honor: Robin Pecknold of Fleet Foxes
Two of the most beautiful pop songs of the last three years were written by Robin Pecknold and his band Fleet Foxes. “Winter White Hymnal,” from the band’s first album released in 2008, is a euphoria-inducing blend of harmonies, soaring guitar and provocative natural imagery. “Helplessness Blues,” the title track from their newly-released album, is Paul Simon if Paul Simon was 25 and had a backup band that shared his talent. Each of these is surrounded by a strong supporting cast of sturdy folk songs with a modern sheen. Robin talks with Brendan about bad TV, the beard question, and how to capture the universe between two fingers.

Main Course: A Matter of Taste
At age 24, Paul Liebrandt became the youngest chef ever to garner a coveted 3-star NY Times Dining review. But a lackluster review a few years later – and NYC’s post-9/11 downturn – temporarily shot down his own rising star. On the eve of the release of the new HBO doc A Matter of Taste: Serving Up Paul Liebrandt (debuting June 13th), Rico chats with the chef about whether the Times is still the ultimate taste-maker.

One For The Road: The Dirty Projectors – “I Dreamed I Saw St. Augustine”
As part of the Levi’s Pioneer sessions, which pairs modern acts with classic jeans – er, songs – The Dirty Projectors took on this ‘dreamy’ 1967 track from Bob Dylan. Best listened to on your 70th birthday, contentedly watching the young’uns grow up.

Music On This Week’s Show:

Sea & Cake – “The Argument”

The Wedding Present – “Signal”

Tipsy – “Liquordelic”

Chromeo – “Woman Friend”

Buckner & Garcia – “Pac-Man Fever”

Dim Dim – “El Bombo Atomico” (Pizza del Sol Mix)

Fleet Foxes – “White Winter Hymnal”

Fleet Foxes – “Grown Ocean”

The Cure – “The Walk” (Razormaid Mix)

The Dirty Projectors – “I Dreamed I Saw St. Augustine”