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Exclusive Premiere: The Goldberg Sisters “Erik Erikson”

Exclusive Premiere: The Goldberg Sisters “Erik Erikson” (photo)

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Adam Goldberg was once a young, handsome, multi-talented actor, musician and director. The last time I spoke with him he was fresh off the completion of a 16mm elegy for The Goldberg Sisters’s song “The Room.” He was prolific, witty, some would say muscular, and his whole life was ahead of him. But, as you’ll see in the Warholian video for this track with a killer riff, “Erik Erikson,” he’s now turned 40.

Viewers sensitive to images of developmental psychologist Erik Erikson, imposing fonts, or those with anxiety about what stage of psychosocial development they’re stuck in, should hit play with caution.

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Erikson is best known for giving us the concept of identity crisis and his theory of the psychosocial stages of development — which have clearly haunted Adam Goldberg, who’s been an existential psychoanalysis fanatic since high school (See “Dazed and Confused“). “I found a journal entry recently,” Goldberg told me. “I was a senior in high school…. pining over an unrequited romance or rather, at the time, I think it was requited, but I was ambivalent, according to this entry dated 3/11/88 12:29 A.M.” The entry read, “It is odd, yeah, yeah, Erikson is really right: you can’t have a relationship — or a successful one or a satisfying one — if you don’t like yourself.”

Clearly, Goldberg was grappling with what Erikson would call, Intimacy vs. Isolation, well ahead of the normal developmental schedule. Fast forward to the year 2000 and Goldberg writes this song, “Erik Erikson” about prematurely experiencing the last of Erikson’s “stages of life” (Integrity vs. Despair) at the age of 30. Now, another decade later, he updated the track for release on The Goldberg Sisters.

For the developmentally curious, the landmark age of 40 is marked by Erikson as the Generativity vs. Stagnation stage. A sense of stagnation, an unproductive lull is often felt when entering midlife. Those who perceive that they have failed to achieve anything, and continue to stagnate through their 40’s, feel stuck and eventually sink into despair. Even alpha types who were incredibly successful, who seemingly sprung effortlessly through life, a career and fame, may find it all catching up with them and suddenly feel burdened. What was it all worth? Is this all that I am?

Others, like Goldberg (who let’s face it, has been living anxiously the whole time) take this opportunity to create art, to “generate” more — which is why he’ll surely ascend to Erikson’s last stage with integrity. Here we see him about to turn 40 complete with numerical evidence. He sat down in a chair and waited for it (and filmed it with a 16mm camera along with his iPhone). “And much like life,” he said, “nothing happens.”

In the spirit of developmental evolution, here’s the decidedly Sonic Youth-inspired, scratch track Goldberg recorded at home. It’s spare, raw promise, compared to the salvo of overlaying guitars and pedal lust that made the final track on the album:


DOWNLOAD: “Erik Erikson – Scratch”

Hey, what developmental stage are you in? Let us know in the comments below or on Twitter or Facebook!

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Hacked In

Funny or Die Is Taking Over

FOD TV comes to IFC every Saturday night.

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We’ve been fans of Funny or Die since we first met The Landlord. That enduring love makes it more than logical, then, that IFC is totally cool with FOD hijacking the airwaves every Saturday night. Yes, that’s happening.

The appropriately titled FOD TV looks like something pulled from public access television in the nineties. Like lo-fi broken-antenna reception and warped VHS tapes. Equal parts WTF and UHF.

Get ready for characters including The Shirtless Painter, Long-Haired Businessmen, and Pigeon Man. They’re aptly named, but for a better sense of what’s in store, here’s a taste of ASMR with Kelly Whispers:

Watch FOD TV every Saturday night during IFC’s regularly scheduled movies.

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Wicked Good

See More Evil

Stan Against Evil Season 1 is on Hulu.

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Okay, so you missed the entire first season of Stan Against Evil. There’s no shame in that, per se. But here’s the thing: Season 2 is just around the corner and you don’t want to lag behind. After all, Season 1 had some critical character development, not to mention countless plot twists, and a breathless finale cliffhanger that’s been begging for resolution since last fall. It also had this:

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The good news is that you can catch up right now on Hulu. Phew. But if you aren’t streaming yet, here’s a basic primer…

Willards Mill Is Evil

Stan spent his whole career as sheriff oblivious to the fact that his town has a nasty curse. Mostly because his recently-deceased wife was secretly killing demons and keeping Stan alive.

Demons Really Want To Kill Stan

The curse on Willards Mill stipulates that damned souls must hunt and kill each and every town sheriff, or “constable.” Oh, and these demons are shockingly creative.

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They Also Want To Kill Evie

Why? Because Evie’s a sheriff too, and the curse on Willard’s Mill doesn’t have a “one at a time” clause. Bummer, Evie.

Stan and Evie Must Work Together

Beating the curse will take two, baby, but that’s easier said than done because Stan doesn’t always seem to give a damn. Damn!

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Beware of Goats

It goes without saying for anyone who’s seen the show: If you know that ancient evil wants to kill you, be wary of anything that has cloven feet.

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Season 2 Is Lurking

Scary new things are slouching towards Willards Mill. An impending darkness descending on Stan, Evie and their cohort – eviler evil, more demony demons, and whatnot. And if Stan wants to survive, he’ll have to get even Stanlier.

Stan Against Evil Season 1 is now streaming right now on Hulu.

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SO EXCITED!!!

Reminders that the ’90s were a thing

"The Place We Live" is available for a Jessie Spano-level binge on Comedy Crib.

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Unless you stopped paying attention to the world at large in 1989, you are of course aware that the ’90s are having their pop cultural second coming. Nobody is more acutely aware of this than Dara Katz and Betsy Kenney, two comedians who met doing improv comedy and have just made their Comedy Crib debut with the hilarious ’90s TV throwback series, The Place We Live.

IFC: How would you describe “The Place We Live” to a fancy network executive you just met in an elevator?

Dara: It’s everything you loved–or loved to hate—from Melrose Place and 90210 but condensed to five minutes, funny (on purpose) and totally absurd.

IFC: How would you describe “The Place We Live” to a drunk friend of a friend you met in a bar?

Betsy: “Hey Todd, why don’t you have a sip of water. Also, I think you’ll love The Place We Live because everyone has issues…just like you, Todd.”

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IFC: When you were living through the ’90s, did you think it was television’s golden age or the pop culture apocalypse?


Betsy: I wasn’t sure I knew what it was, I just knew I loved it!


Dara: Same. Was just happy that my parents let me watch. But looking back, the ’90s honored The Teen. And for that, it’s the golden age of pop culture. 

IFC: Which ’90s shows did you mine for the series, and why?

Betsy: Melrose and 90210 for the most part. If you watch an episode of either of those shows you’ll see they’re a comedic gold mine. In one single episode, they cover serious crimes, drug problems, sex and working in a law firm and/or gallery, all while being young, hot and skinny.


Dara: And almost any series we were watching in the ’90s, Full House, Saved By the Bell, My So Called Life has very similar themes, archetypes and really stupid-intense drama. We took from a lot of places. 

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IFC: How would you describe each of the show’s characters in terms of their ’90s TV stereotype?

Dara: Autumn (Sunita Mani) is the femme fatale. Robin (Dara Katz) is the book worm (because she wears glasses). Candace (Betsy Kenney) is Corey’s twin and gives great advice and has really great hair. Corey (Casey Jost) is the boy next door/popular guy. Candace and Corey’s parents decided to live in a car so the gang can live in their house. 
Lee (Jonathan Braylock) is the jock.

IFC: Why do you think the world is ready for this series?

Dara: Because everyone’s feeling major ’90s nostalgia right now, and this is that, on steroids while also being a totally new, silly thing.

Delight in the whole season of The Place We Live right now on IFC’s Comedy Crib. It’ll take you back in all the right ways.