• The best of Hardly Strictly Bluegrass: Conor Oberst's rollicking roots-rock, numerous unscheduled appearances by Led Zep members Robert Plant and John Paul Jones, Del McCoury's bluegrass band taking requests, and the fact that the free festival wasn't insanely crowded. It was another great year in the park.
• Speaking of greatness, Body and SOUL was pretty much the best party ever: DJs François K., Joaquin "Joe" Claussell, and Danny Krivit gave Mighty's dancers six hours of extra-human experience on Saturday that came closer to the platonic ideal than an ordinary dance party.
• New Order played its first U.S. show since 2005 to an elated crowd at a sold-out Fox Theater. We got almost all of the band's epic dance-rock singles, plus a tribute to Joy Division that came off a little awkward. No surprise: "Blue Monday" drew the biggest cheers of the night.
• Ew: Eddie Vedder gave an undeserved stamp of approval to Kings of Leon by singing with the band at Oracle's OpenWorld party on Treasure Island. Doesn't the Pearl Jam singer know he's in a different league than the Followill brothers?
• Okay, we love Adele, but her new James Bond theme "Skyfall" is kind of a snooze. Why does the singer sound like she was dozing off in the recording booth? This song has about as much passion as a couple of 90-year-olds who've been married for 70 years.
• Metallica and Vans? Yes, the Bay Area metal band teamed up with the California shoe company for a new product line that includes a Kill 'Em All-themed sneaker. We have better Metallica merch ideas, like the "Wherever I May Roam" GPS and a "Fuel"-edition Chevy Camaro. Or how about "Ride the Lightning" condoms?