Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Painted In Exile - Revitalized (Official Video)

The build up was sort of a big deal for this video, and for what it is, it's not bad. Nothing amazingly surreal or breathtaking visually, but good enough from an editing and video story-telling standpoint along with just seeing the band in action I guess.

It's cool to see a 9+ minute video for once. I'm not sure how many bands have ever made a video that long. Most cases if it's for a longer song, of course the song is edited down for the video.

The girls meet up, and shoot up with heroin or some other drug, the 1 appears to die..or does she?

Now that this thing has been released, etc the next thing we hear from Painted In Exile will be about the plans for 2011 and their debut record. But for now, it's nice to finally check this thing out, that they seemed to work pretty hard on this Fall.

Monday, November 29, 2010


Demos/Unfinished B-Sides

1. Crooked River 03:47
2. Dead In 3:01 03:00
3. Noticing Cameras 02:25
4. October River Returns 02:39
5. A Dimmer Lux (DEMO) 04:53
6. At The Foot Of The Hill 04:32
7. Fields 02:30
8. Witches Blossom (DEMO) 03:49
9. The Farmhouse 03:46
10. The Curse Of Maybel Cains (DEMO) 04:58
11.Cranes 02:20
12.Nightjar 03:18
13.Witches Blossom 03:43

This is a compilation of Unreleased/Demos/B-side. They aren't good sounding recordings to say the least, and it's hard for us to put these out to the public like this. Most are quick demos we tracked to get the idea for the album, and some of them we never ended up tracking later, they ended up on the shelf with all the other unfinished songs. It gives you a look inside some of the process of making an album and our quick bedroom recordings have a bit of charm to them. A few score track are ideas I recorded to get over writer's block in certain parts of the script, when I was writing it. The last track is the album version of Witches Blossom, for those who bought a physical album with that track missing.



Video explanation from Jessy

Demos/Unfinished B-Sides

just pledged and got those demos. The album is being made, but still any/all
contributions there will help.

So, very good news to see even with the Kickstarter campaign not going through. They did receive nearly $2,000 though which was impressive. But with Bandcamp, it's not so limited to a timeframe exactly. And he's wise seek other resources to help fund it as well. But I certainly hope a lot of those folks who pledged to the Kickstarter will give something to this as well, even if they are just low-quality demos. I'm not sure. I might guess they will be similar to the Ms.Leading/Dear Ms.Leading demos The Dear Hunter made. While the quality is lower, some of the songs/music/arrangements are really, very good. I wonder/hope these will have things to enjoy no matter the quality. Suppose I'll know soon once I get around to checking them out.

But obviously the great news is, Mars/Brighton II is still happening relatively soon.

edit: this is an ACTUAL RELEASE, lol. And that image there is considered the cover.

Return to Forever "Seventh Galaxy" Tour in 2011

facebook link

Return to Forever is doing a "7th Galaxy" tour next year with Bill Connors returning and Jean-Luc Ponty joining Chick Corea, Stanley Clarke and Lenny White.

Perth, Riverside Theatre - Wednesday Feb 9
Melbourne, Regent Theatre - Friday Feb 11
Sydney, Opera House - Tuesday Feb 15
Brisbane, Convention Centre - Thursday Feb 17
Auckland, ASB Theatre - Saturday Feb 19

more dates including the US should be coming soon..

I'll fully admit, as much as I LOVE RTF, my experience with the Bill Connors-period is minimal at best. However, I have a friend who used to talk about how vastly superior Connors was to Al Di Meola, and ever since I've always meant to explore that period of music. Why I have yet to? time, opportunity, etc. The same probably I can say about the pre-classic period of Mahavishnu Orchestra and a lot of the Weather Report stuff. I have heard some of it before, but not to the point I know it. But I suppose one goal is from now until a tour date in Minneapolis is announced, I shall start to familiarize myself with it. Especially Hymn of the Seventh Galaxy which some consider as good if not better than Romantic Warrior

It's also cool that they have Jean-Luc Ponty in the lineup. Did the early RTF stuff include violin parts?..see, that shows how little I know right now.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Ne Obliviscaris needs your HELP!

This is what I've posted on the forums:

This band from Australia are really good, but have yet to to release their 1st full-length album. It's almost entirely recorded, mixed, etc, but they have yet to decide on HOW to release it..i.e. the right record label, etc.

Well, their future may be in doubt.
Save Ne Obliviscaris! (An Open letter Re: Benjamin Baret's Australian Visa Rejection)

their guitarist isn't a native of Australia, and the Immigration people aren't at this time seeing his reasons for staying in Australia to be valid enough.

The more signatures on the petition, obviously the better.

In the mean time, I would suggest others around here to check out their incredible "Aurora Veil" ep/demo.


That Aurora Veil EP/Demo is awesome and really shows a ton of potential. And I have mentioned them a few times in this blog in the past I recall, since discovering my interest in them back in March.

So, it would totally suck if they weren't able to at least release this debut record of theirs, especially due to this Visa issue.

Although, 100Ft Snowman, Eroica, Grammatics, Apes and Androids, Stiletto Formal, Fields, etc, etc, etc... this kind of circumstance seems to happen, like I've said before, nearly every month if not more often. I really hope this band doesn't become another casualty, especially from something as silly as a Visa/Immigration issue.

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Emanuel & the Fear - TBA (2011) (1.0)

haha. New ep is coming next Spring :)

So, I wonder if their next full-length will come later in 2011, or 2012? I guess 1 thing at-a-time. I can claim to finally have seen a hardcopy of Listen at The Electric Fetus a few weeks back, which is impressive in itself given how many albums like it never find the shelf there or even at Cheapo (I recall finally after 4 years seeing a used copy of a Bend Sinister cd there this Summer).

God Damnit Nevada!

Why did they have to comeback? And why did it seem like in the 2nd half of their game against Boise St, did they get a few key home-cooking calls? For one, the punt that was fumbled and ruled an illegal hit was bs. That was a fumble, Boise recovered and would have had the ball at the Nevada 10 yard line, up 24-7 at the time. Had Boise scored there, the game was over.

The 18 yard touchdown Nevada's so-called brilliant running qb had, he stepped out of bounds before he got in to the end zone. Sorry, but he did. Nevada may have gone for it the next play and scored anyway, but that was a call that nobody seemed to notice.

But okay, beyond the fact Boise lost this game, and how they did. They shouldn't have, but the reason this is bugging the fuck out of me is for a couple of reasons.

a) the BCS is still an imperfect system. It's fucked up. It always has been, and until an actual sudden-death playoff is set up, that decides who wins the National Championship is, it will always be fucked up.

b) Had Boise won and then made the BCS, and presumably TCU wins tomorrow. Oregon beats Oregon St next Saturday and Auburn beats South Carolina next Saturday as well. There would be 4 undefeated teams in Division I College Football. And thus you should have each undefeated team play another, and you end up with 2 undefeated teams after the Bowl Season is over. Thus it continues to justify how fucked up the BCS is, and another season adds to the demand to finally get the BCS and Bowl boosters and what not to get their proverbial heads out from under their collective asses, and set up a fucking playoff system finally.

It's not for this Season 2010. It's not for next season, or 5 years from now. IT'S FOR HISTORY. So many seasons from now, they can look back at how pathetic and screwed up the VOTING and COMPUTER RANKINGS, STRENGTH OF SCHEDULE factors that goes into the BCS really is.

Division II, III, NAIA, I-AA, and every other fucking NCAA sport including of course the Mens Division I basketball has a bloody playoff. Division I Football needs one soon, and thus we need more and more seasons with as many (at least 3, but preferably 4 or more) undefeated teams to demand this change to finally happen.

The other point in requiring a playoff, that barely if I have ever seen brought up is it's not about who goes undefeated throughout the entire season. The regular season should not be viewed as a playoff. That's baloney. It's not who you play, but when you play them. The point being, there are teams who may have lost 1 or 2 games for various reasons, recently or more so EARLY IN THE SEASON, that truthfully are playing the best football of any team in the country right now. A playoff at least allows for a team to come-together throughout a season and still have a chance to win.

The Mens Basketball tournament isn't necessarily won by the team who has the best record, but the team whose playing the best at that time. Actually, that's the case in every fucking sport more or less, except Division I Football.

So, I have nothing personal against Nevada, and Boise are kind of a cool story, but it's not like I have a personal interest in them. But having Boise lose there, made me kind of hate Nevada tonight and their fans. Had that fumble on the punt stood and Boise gone up 31-7 in the 3rd quarter, the game would have been over. But now with this comeback and loss in OT (which by the way, is another thing that's fucked up with College Football, but that's a lesser issue at this stage), Boise not only isn't undefeated and it fucks up the argument against the BCS; but they probably won't even be in the BCS all-together. And so you take their team and you consider if they are 1 of the 8 best teams in the country. Are they? I would think so, as they killed every team they played for the most part until having to play tonight on the road at a rival and ranked team in Nevada. But the way the BCS works, the WAC doesn't have an automatic bid, and there's teams with 1 loss from stronger conferences (according to the BCS) that will likely find their way in instead of them.

It's not fair. It's fucked up. I want to love College Football because the NFL can be a drag at times. But until they have a playoff on-the-field, I can't. So, Reno, Nevada, I don't give a shit if this was the biggest sporting event in your town in 80 years, destiny, rivalry, your little qb saying it's the biggest game of his life, blah blah. You fucked things up not only for Boise, but for all of College Football for who knows how many years. I hope you're happy.

Friday, November 26, 2010

System of a Down Reunion in 2011

B-mouth link

SYSTEM OF A DOWN's much-rumored comeback/reunion tour is expected to be announced on Monday, November 29, along with details of several European festival appearances in 2011, including the U.K.'s Download.

When asked by a fan via Twitter if there is any truth to reports that SYSTEM OF A DOWN will play next year's Download festival, SYSTEM bassist Shavo Odadjian replied, "Stay tuned."

Download festival organizer Andy Copping revealed that Download 2011 early-bird tickets will go on sale on December 3. Writing on his Twitter, Copping said, "Christmas comes early! Download 2011 early bird tickets on sale 9 a.m. Friday 3rd December 2010. There will be more Download info [on November 29]. Please…any specific questions about bands being announced, ticket prices, RIP, length of time for early birds etc. will be answered November 29."

According to the official blog of Francis Zégut, host of the show "Pop Rock Station" on the French radio station RTL2, SYSTEM OF A DOWN will perform at the Palais Omnisports de Paris Bercy in Paris, France on June 6, 2011. This is expected to be one of many gigs the reunited band will play in Europe during next summer's festival season.

When asked about the possibility of a full-blown SYSTEM reunion during an August 2010 interview with The Pulse of Radio, singer Serj Tankian replied, "Shavo got married like two months ago, we were all at his wedding, and you know, we all talk, we're friends, nothing's changed, and we get offers to play shows, tours, whatever, and we discuss them once in a while. We have not made any decisions as of yet as to what we're gonna do. But when we do, it'll be quite obvious."

(A short audio clip of Serj Tankian talking to The Pulse of Radio about SYSTEM OF A DOWN's status is available at this location [Real Media].)

Meanwhile, Odadjian himself said in a recent interview with Hustler magazine that SYSTEM went on an "indefinite break" to save the band from splitting up permanently.

Odadjian explained, "We won a Grammy and we had two number one records. We were making a lot of loot [money]. Then some people within the group of four brothers started seeing things differently . . . and their actions made the reactions of others pretty unbrotherly-like."

The bass player added, "All of a sudden band members are having problems financially. . . . [and] fighting about, 'I want my style of music to be this and that.' I love them. They're my brothers, but I couldn't see my brothers digging into each other's pockets and killing each other's artistic creativity."

Odadjian said that the band members vowed to come back "when we again have the hunger and the fire in our eyes that we did when we started SYSTEM OF A DOWN."

SYSTEM OF A DOWN has been on hiatus since 2006 while its members have pursued various personal projects. Tankian released his first solo album, "Elect The Dead", in 2007 and a follow-up effort, "Imperfect Harmonies", earlier this year, while bassist Shavo Odadjian recorded with members of the WU-TANG CLAN and launched a new online music initiative. Meanwhile, guitarist Daron Malakian started a new band called SCARS ON BROADWAY, also featuring SYSTEM drummer John Dolmayan.

well, a tour is nice, a new album probably better. But I guess it's the 1st step, as it seems Serj's solo work hasn't compared too well to the SOAD music. I think it's largely due to how political it is, at least for me. I'm curious, especially with the break and what's happened since 2004-2005 politically/globally if they were to write new music as a band, how it would compare to Serj's solo work. Hopefully better, but we'll see.

If they come to Minnesota, I'm probably going. Although I still feel The Mars Volta outclassed them at XCel the 1 time I saw SOAD. Although SOAD were still good, but the Volta were better that evening.

Steve Morse + Neal Morse + Mike Portnoy + Dave LaRue - TBA (2011) (1.0)

Steve Morse is interviewed and talks about it at 7:16 into this video.

just saw this and another interview that mentions it. Not a bad alternative for Mike. As long as it's not Christian, I'm pretty intrigued. Also a good change for Steve Morse since Deep Purple has been more or less a cash-call for him for how long?

Thursday, November 25, 2010


11/25/10 4:13PM

This is a bit more detailed and formal list on rym I just set up, that is in progress

I guess either in this entry, or more likely a brand-spanking new entry, I may copy+paste and add more to what is on that list.


Kevin Gilbert (not nearly enough)
Apes and Androids
Call Florence Pow
Bend Sinister
Cavil at Rest/Local Natives
House of Fools
The Apex Theory
Hills Like White Elephants
Klimt 1918
Jeremy Messersmith
Apples In Stereo

TV: Psych

Goodman Hammer - "Like Children"

King's X
Margot & the Nuclear So & So's

Sound Opinions
Kevin Gilbert

The Receiving End of Sirens
Apes and Androids
Margot & the Nuclear So & So's
House of Fools
Kiss Kiss
People For Audio
Klimt 1918

TV: Psych, Veronica Mars, Gilmore Girls

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

The Dear Hunter - The Colors Spectrum EPs (small update)


11/24/10 11:07PM

Green Song

I had to post this. Seth Deming (http://sdeming.blogspot.com/) created this video and while it isn't an official video, or an official recording of the song, the video is really beautiful and I wanted to promote it in any way I could. Please check it out and give him some love! He also has a video of another song from the house show that night.

11/22/10 5:17PM

cool to learn about Brendan Brown (The Receiving End of Sirens) playing bass

Recording Orange
Posted Nov 21, 2010 12:00:00 am

5 days ago we arrived in New England after a 10 day cross country jaunt- stopping at various houses along the way where I played some acoustic sets- but mostly embarrassed myself with awkward humor and long pauses.

After staying the night at my fiancee's parents house, Gary (The photographer who has filmed/photographed everything you'll see on this trip) and I made our way down to check into our hotel in Rhode Island. My brother's flight was getting in the next afternoon and we needed to plant our feet. After picking up my brother and touching base with Brendan Brown (playing bass on the orange EP) we headed to Strangeways studio in Providence RI to meet up with Mike Poorman, and start tracking basics.

Very excited with how the songs are translating, and can't wait to show everyone- though it will be some time.

I should have some video up fairly soon.

I dig the song in the background.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

22 - Flux (2010) (1.0)

22newenergymusic dot com

1 Plastik
2 Gotodo
3 Flux
4 I Am That I Am
5 Disconnecting From the Grid
6 Kneel Estate
7 Loopwhole
8 Power Is So Yesterday
9 Perspective Pleiadian
10 Susurrus
11 Abdomental

Who is this band? a group who hail from Norway. Their style of music? well the riyl/ffo etc: The Fall of Troy, dredg, The Mars Volta, The Dear Hunter, Coheed and Cambria

Those pics/artwork are kind of fucked up maybe in a good way, ultimately, I dunno, lol.

But I was just introduced to them a few hours ago and they immediately have my attention as potentially a band I may get attached to. They're doing college-prog certainly, but some rather unusual twists and combining styles. They sound a bit mathy at times, rather catchy as well ("I Am That I Am" especially).

The only concern I have just from hearing Flux off pc speakers is I of course noticed a bit of 4C, but only on one or two songs I recall. But I'm going to have to give them the headphone-treatment to know how much if there is any issue at all about that. But if there isn't much, I probably will be giving this album a fair amount of time over the next week or two, at least. Who knows, this could be one of those unknowns/sleepers that comes in the 11th hour. An aoty contender? probably not, but it could find it's way in the mix towards the top certainly.

Pat Metheny - TBA (2011) (1.0)

twitter post

also retwittered

New Record for 2011: Pat will be working on a new record that should be out by mid year. More info on this before Christmas (source: PM).

2010's Orchestrion was interesting, but ultimately I'm not sure it lived up to the hype/my hopes. I'd love to get excited about a new Metheny record, but his catalog is so varied, I am always at a wait-and-see.

Monday, November 22, 2010

All Media Reviews Music Essential: Galactic Cowvboys

The Galactic Cowboys

The Galactic Cowboys I first heard about, basically the day or at least the week-of the 1st King's X concert I saw at "The Mirage" in Minneapolis. I recall it being July or August of 1996. King's X had just come under my radar at that time too. But the Galactic Cowboys were opening for them, but they weren't a typical opening act I found. I just recall going to Cheapo a few hours before hand and listening to one or two of their cassette tapes. In 1996, I was still in the mode of buying tapes 1st, just to evaluate how much I liked a band or an album. I also recall distinctly listening to a Faith No More cd (or two) that very same trip and kind of liking it but not enough to buy it.

But I know I picked up Space in Your Face and I believe the Self-titled album that very trip to the Minneapolis Cheapo, which I also recall at that time being located down the block from where it is now on Lake Street.

So then I saw them open for King' X. I actually recall getting in to the show late or the club not letting everyone inside for the start of TGC's set. And years later being rather pissed about that.

King's X blew me away that night, so the Cowboys impression were not as high as 1 of my newest favorite bands were. But I remember sometime soon after that, stumbling upon a small live photo of them in an issue of Metal Edge with some notes from their tour. And now thinking about it, I may have actually had that issue before the concert, and actually read it. It said something about how the Galactic Cowboys "and their great harmonies" and some other things that weren't as typical in hard rock/heavy metal. And almost sounded more of a progressive rock element.

A few years after I picked up Martin Popoff's 1997 book A Collector's Guide to Heavy Metal that had like 10,000 reviews in it, and at least one or more of the Cowboys reviews said "The Beatles meets Metallica" which really sounded cool to me.

So, they went on to release two albums and an EP after that, one that I caught them on tour again with King's X. I believe it was in 1998 at the Medina Ballroom, one cold winter night.

edit: actually, it may have been two more times. Once on tour supporting The Horse that Bud Bought at Ground Zero in Minneapolis, and once supporting At the End of the Day. But every time was with King's X. I came to almost expect those two bands together.

And that was over the course of 3+ years really. 1996 to 1999. I really loved Space in Your Face and the s/t debut album was another one I enjoyed. SIYF had these cool harmonies, and even the Beatles elements that I loved. They actually had some grunge sound to them, but it was only one side to their music. Really being progressive in a lot of ways. How many bands really were influenced, quite obviously, by Metallica and The Beatles? You could say Dream Theater, but not nearly as blatantly. Machine Fish and AtEotD were also both solid records. And after some years, I actually think The Horse that Bud Bought is actually not nearly as bad as I found it when it came out.

I don't recall how long after, but sometime in the year 2000, King's X went on tour, but not with the Cowboys. And not long after that, I found out about the new album Let It Go which would be their last. I do remember specifically reading either online or in Metal Edge that they parted on good terms, and certainly did not rule out the idea of a reunion some day.

And sadly, Let it Go I never got totally into, at least at the time. It was really, a lot different than any of their other albums. But I kind of felt it was in some ways, a good thing it was. But it also often seemed like the band throwing any and all ideas they had into it. It was a lot more diverse stylistically. They used more synths and frankly, free-form jams in it.

Ultimately, I have revisited it and enjoyed it more in recent years.

A few other notes about these guys that cannot be forgotten. Around 1990 or 1991, a record label representative was scouting talent, looking to sign a new band. And somehow the same representative ended up looking at Nirvana and perhaps one other band, along with the Galactic Cowboys. There have been quotes about the fact the only reason Nirvana was signed over the Galactic Cowboys was due to their name being more market-able. And Kurt Cobain was quoted as being surprised by that after hearing The Galactic Cowboys. Saying something of the effect "I don't know why they signed us over that band the Galactic Cowboys. After all, they actually CAN sing."

So myself and many of the longtime Cowboys fans think about that and what could have been.

The Galactic Cowboys did end up opening for Dream Theater around 1992 or '93. And I don't recall if I realized it before or after I saw them open for King's X, but of course the clip that shows some of the guys in Dream Theater's Music In Progress: Live in Tokyo video with them singing "Take the Time" is priceless. I guess they joined the band on stage for that one, maybe on more than one occasion. They also opened for Savatage around that time, either the s/t or Space In Your Face period. Of course I wasn't aware of any of those bands at the time so I never caught a show from either of those tours.

Awful Truth was a band Monty Colvin and Alan Doss were in in the late 1980's, that released one full-length cd. For many years I wanted to hear it, and I remember Impulse Music or Wild Side Records having it for sale, but I never got around to buying it. But thankfully about two years ago I found a copy on ebay. That along with some of the bootlegs and bootleg videos I have are among my most cherished Cowboys items, from a rarity and collectors stand point.

They were a brilliant band, who maybe even Beatallica fans owe something too now, given what Beatallica are (and TGC's style in a lot ways was), but sadly never were truly understood. Although more so than fellow Texas d-tuned prog band Atomic Opera. They just never fully got the break they deserved. Maybe one reason why I admire their work even more in some ways, some 15 years later. The reunion shows that happened last Summer would have been sweet to see but money and some other factors made it a bit too hard for me to attend. I did see them three times at least, and perhaps they'll do another reunion eventually. Maybe with King's X again.

I've always felt they were better than pretty much every one of the grunge bands of their time. Better songwriters, better at writing melodies, funnier, and better technical players. And definitely much better singers.

Albums: Space In Your Face, Galactic Cowboys, At the End of the Day, Machine Fish
Songs: Blind, Sea of Tranquillity, Still Life of Peace, You Make Me Smile, Where Are You Now?, No Problems, Feel the Rage, Ranch On Mars, My Old School, Tiltawhirl


Sunday, November 21, 2010

Sufjan Stevens - Too Much live on Jimmy Fallon

So I totally missed this and Menomena recently on his show or Carson Daley, I forget. But as far as this performance, you know musically fine. But what's up with the Glammy get-up and all the extra costuming? Is Sufjan now trying to make his band Apes and Androids? And there, I mean it might be better in a big concert hall or theater, but on tv it kind of looked weird and I hate to say it, but a bit poser-ish.

Mind you, The Age of Adz is his best record, and "Impossible Soul" is his best song, but I was definitely a bit surprised by this, which I guess was his 1st National TV/Talk Show appearance like Menomena earlier this year on Fallon or Kimmel, I forget.

Friday, November 19, 2010

dredg - The Cabooze 11/17

forum posts

just got back a bit ago from the show here in Minneapolis. The played the new song "Upon Returning,".. it sounds promising. I saw Mark for a few minutes after wards outside in the 20 degree weather. He signed my Leitmotif vinyl and I just briefly asked him about the record and he said it's a record that's not very guitar-driven at all. More keys/synths I guess.

March 29th I thought I heard Gavin mention is the date they look for it to be released.

it was good..a bit short for my liking, but of course known going-in. Mark told me he wasn't too thrilled with The Cabooze. I suppose I follow him, but overall the sound worked for where I was straight-back in the 1st row of seating.

For some reason it hit me the bands on the bill seemed totally like a show the Triplerock would book, but the numbers of tickets it demanded is higher than TTR can hold. I wonder if The Cabooze has now become the overflow for larger size shows that TTR wants but can't hold.

Set list (not in exact order)

Ode to the Sun
Same Ol' Road
Jamais Vu
Upon Returning (new song)
Sang Real
Down to the Cellar
Bug Eyes

Animals As Leaders, while they still have some of the issues I originally remembered about their studio work, I thought were better than I expected. Good energy and most of the pieces they played had at least 1 2-3 minute section which really worked.

Codeseven, honestly I wanted to get into, but they sounded more or less like a poor-man's version of Strata or Editors. The electronic part of their music was not as notice-able as I recall from the studio albums I checked out. Plus their singer didn't really project too well. Maybe part of that was due to The Cabooze itself. I wish I had been able to at least talk to them and inquire about Telescreen to the members who are with them. And even something with Distrails assuming they know that project since Jared is with Telescreen. But I never saw them after the show.

Circa Survive I didn't stay for which I'm sure sounds shocking, lol.

I meant to as Mark specifically about the older demos and things, but from his comment about the album being less guitar-driven and different, I would be surprised if many if any at all of those older tunes ended up on it. Which would beg the question, will a b-sides release ever come out with them. I did bring up the History documentary DVD to him and he just said it'll never happen (or don't count on it, I forget his exact words).

to add a few more points.

Animals As Leaders: their music isn't exactly instrumental "prog metal" exactly, at least live. It sort of weaves between that, more power-chordy metal, and mathy tones. Which I sometimes like, but the sections they use some of those styles last longer than I'd like, which is still the fundamental issue I have with them. But overall, they are less derivative of 90's instrumental prog metal as I recall, and live they do have more punch and muscle than the album which I just felt was too soft and too prog-jazzy. Now Tosin did have a longer jazz section/solo which again, is nice, but in the mix, I'm kind of against at that length. I will say, I shared a few words for a minute or 2 after wards and he seems like a really nice guy.

dredg should be back in the Spring to support the new record.

The new song just sounded different than most dredg music, but it had some twists and catchy sections that I think could work.

As much as Mark and maybe the rest of the band weren't blown away by The Cabooze, I think a lot of new fans were made at the show.

Cloud Cult - 11/18/10 First Ave

Here's my forum post

I just got back a bit ago from seeing them. These guys are a CLASS ACT live. It's a total ENERGY FEST. The whole band sings perfectly in chorus, and every member (other than the drummer) is frequently switching between instruments including single tom drums.

Plus, as I had read about, they have 2 people do these layered pieces of art throughout the whole show.

I would totally endorse seeing them live if you are even on the fence about their studio work.

All these years they've been this big deal in this town, especially live, and I see why now. I really had no clue what I was missing. I am now off to seek out the rest of their catalog that I have yet to hear (4 albums and a documentary film).

the set list show was probably 75% or more from Light Chasers and Feel Good Ghosts. I know they did a couple of tunes off their others. But I guess last night's show was a pretty different set given they knew some fans attended both.

But they have been playing the whole Light Chasers record live at times at least, from what their drummer said. The sound check was really nice, they gave everyone free pizza and the chance to talk with the band members. I don't think I've ever had that kind of experience at a concert, especially at a place like First Ave that I often never see the bands before or after wards. I kind of wish I had gone to the show on Wednesday, but I had a ticket for dredg last night.

But I have to add some stuff. Here's just a guess of the set list

Unexplainable Stories
No One Said It Would Be Easy
Exploding People
You'll Be Bright
Mr. Tambourine Man (Bob Dylan)
Running With the Wolves
Journey of the Featherless?
Today We Give Ourselves To The Fire
Story of Granson Jesus?
There's So Much Energy In Us

Everybody Here Is a Cloud

they did I'm pretty sure at least 1 maybe 2 tunes off Hippopotamus and then I would guess 1 or 2 off albums I have not heard.

The other big things about this show that I honestly will never forget.

-I LOST (misplaced) my actual show-ticket sometime between the moment I pulled it out with my dredg show ticket at the Cabooze last night. Luckily (or unluckily), I didn't actually realize it until about 2:30 and spend the last 24 hours freaking out over it. So, I had my SOUND CHECK pass still, and I showed up after filling a meter on the street with 16 quarters, lol. I maybe missed 10 minutes of the band actually playing. But the Sound Check while it was cool, ended up having me feeling kind of miserable without a ticket for the actual show. I told the security at the door about misplacing my ticket and they said they had to clear out the club after the Sound Check ended, and I need a ticket given I could have given someone my ticket (and not be telling them).

So, they had free pizza from Pizza Luce, which was really nice, although I'm totally guilty for more or less living on their food over the last week. But it was still welcome. I asked a few people about what I should do. One girl told me to hang out in the bathroom or something. But after the band finished rehearsing they came down on to the floor and grabbed some pizza as well. But I was watching the Sound Check from my desired seated spot on the upper right hand side at a table + chair.

So CC's keyboard/french-horn/trumpet player Sarah and I think their manager (or lighting? sound?) Adrian came upstairs to use the restroom, and I caught them and explained my situation to them and they were really very nice to put me on the guest list.

From that moment on, I was on Cloud 9 it seemed.

I think I'm going to have to try and see them again as soon as I can. I sort of have some make up for lost time. Especially if I find myself even more into them with getting into their back catalog more in depth.

Their drummer Arlin also was really cool to chat with for a bit after their Sound Check. I guess he plays with Caroline Smith and the Goodnight Sleeps as well. I would go for seeing them again, but even more now. I had no idea I saw him when I saw Caroline and her band back in January of 2009 with Best Friends Forever and Jeremy Messersmith.

I also can't stress enough how good their energy was, along with the group drumming and the paintings. Although I think Scott West's darker/blacker painting of a woman, which I didn't see as much of the creation-of as given my view was better to Connie Minowa's, was better. Connie's was more of that layer-over-layer-over-layer thing which I'm kind of less crazy about as I once mentioned about a Judgement Day's video. The more subtle, less-is-more at times work on Scott's was more my thing, and more similar to the guy who painted at those Jenny Dalton shows a few years ago.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Sick of a lot of things

warning: whiny/emo entry..my apologies

but one being on forums. Of course having to pass along info specifically on SO MANY of them.

but in some cases, I'll post some news and then as it turns out it's already been posted by someone. And in other cases of course, another topic is already about said news (and not posted in the thread). And when I have done so, I do a search and find the topic and fail to carefully check the date of the last post.

I'm definitely sick of Radio K's music library not having so many bands they could/should play. Namely, dredg, Ours, The Dear Hunter, Genesis, King's X, Kevin Gilbert/Toy Matinee.

I'm sick of music, movies, tv shows I love not receiving the praise, while other, music, tv and movies getting far too much praise. It's not fair and it's not balanced.

I'm sick of feeling like I should be working in this industry (entertainment media) for a living but am not. I see some who are and could claim they are doing what they love, at the risk of lower job-security. But will I 10 years from now look back on this time and wonder why the fuck I didn't try and pursue a career in it, even with the lack of pay, opportunity, etc. Will I wonder, is my taste and ability to provider info on this stuff really realistic in terms of appeal. Mass-appeal? Naturally I'd like to think it is, but in truth, most of the masses would probably think my taste sucks. My taste is too niche. And it sucks to realize that. There's the parallel dimension theory.

I am also sick of being 1st to the punch to bands like Warpaint and Local Natives among many others..but those two specifically, and feeling like I am owed something beyond the acknowledgment from the bands. I know they know. But the bandwagon jumpers at Pitchfork and local radio/print etc frankly, even if they totally knew of me and my support of them so long before, they wouldn't give me shit. And actually I wouldn't probably desire any recognition from those specifically if at least they would listen to me about other bands from then-on.

I'm like a guy who finds really good stocks when the price is like 20 cents a share, but don't actually have the money to buy them at the time. And then suddenly that stock goes way up and those people who knew I pointed the stock out to them so early don't even want to come back to me for advice on the next one.

Fucked Up, huh?

It's stuff like that, and the lack of ability for many of these folks to see my twitter posts and posts on this blog, that kind of make me want to just keep everything I find..news, new bands..rumors..etc as a secret. Not share anything with the public, because what the fuck good is it really doing me and them? Although I could swear, someone is either following this blog, my rateyourmusic or at least a couple of forums I'm on from progarchives. Far too many of the bands I champion keep showing up in their added artists. Fuckers..it's like it would kill them to try and contact me and say something.

Blech, my neck or collarbone vertebrae problem is really bugging me. There's a ton of others points, tangents and things that are wanting to come out in here. But I'm too fatigued right now plus I have Cloud Cult tomorrow, so the more sleep the better.

Fair to Midland - TBA (2011) (1.0)

this was just posted over on this topic on the fans forum

1 - Wh (...?)
2 - The Dead Sea
3 - Ember Rosa
4 - The Greener Grass
5 - Babe Ruthe
6 - Golden Parachutes
7 - Uh-Oh
8 - Coppertank Islands
9 - A Loophole in Limbo
10 - Bright Bulbs, Sharp Tools
11 - Rikki Tikki Tavi
12 - Musical Chairs
13 - Bravo Sierra
14 - Pour the (Coal to 'er)
15 - Short (...?)
16. Amarillo Sleeps On My Pillow (Thanks ounwx)

11/8/2010 5:26PM

Very good news to read about this. Now, how this involves Serjical Strike and Rocket Science Distribution remains to be seen. But it's great to finally get something substantial after a lengthly delay on the follow-up to Fables. 2011 should be a big year for the guys I imagine.

press release
facebook post

FAIR TO MIDLAND SIGN WORLD WIDE DEAL WITH EONE MUSIC (New York, NY) - Texas natives FAIR TO MIDLAND have signed a worldwide deal with eOne Music. A new album is schedule for the spring of 2011 along with a tour to support it. The band has enlisted producer Joe Barresi (TOOL, QUEENS OF THE STONEAGE, COHEED AND CAMBRIA) to man the board for this next offering. "I've been looking forward to working with these guys for quite sometime. They're a great band whose music is intricate and yet very melodic," says Barresi. The new album will be the band's follow-up to "Fables from a Mayfly: What I Tell You Three Times Is True" which included the popular singles Dance of the Manatee and Tall Tales Taste Like Sour Grapes. "We're all huge fans of what Barresi did with Queens of the Stone Age. We wanted a stellar rock producer and were lucky enough to find one who has managed to find the happy medium between polish and performance,âs says front man Darroh Sudderth. Founded in 1998 in the quiet farm town of Sulphur Springs, Texas, Fair To Midland quickly became one of the Lone Star State's fastest-rising bands, earning critical acclaim for their first two independent releases, 2001's The Carbon Copy Silver Lining and the 2004 inter.funda.stifle. Since the release of Fables From a Mayfly, they have shared the stage with bands such as the Smashing Pumpkins, Flyleaf, Chevelle, Dir en Grey, Alice In Chains, and Serj Tankian throughout the U.S. & Europe. The band has made appearances at festivals such as Coachella, Bamboozle, Download Festival, Rock AM Ring and Rock IM Park. Fair Midland is Darroh Sudderth (vocals), Cliff Campbell (guitar), Brett Stowers (drums), Matt Langley (keyboards) and Jon Dicken (Bass).

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

AllMediaReviews Music Essential: Bend Sinister

Bend Sinister

One of Canada's biggest secrets, that perhaps now in 2010 may finally see some due recognition and exposure, after number of years in sad obscurity. I can trace 1st seeing their name I recall the Summer of 2006. On the Porcupine Tree message board, a topic titled "Something interesting out of Canada."

This band had released what is technically their 2nd album in 2005 Through the Broken City and their website had a neat design that went with the artwork.

Their style of music could be vaguely described as if Jeff Buckley were singing with The Mars Volta. However, I often hear a strong influence from Queen as well as even The Guess Who or Elton John. Although as I came to take in their music more and more, I realized they had somewhat of their own sound, and that description might not be 100% accurate. They had these great crescendos that I found myself loving, on that album. They also at times could be incredibly catchy or include one or two really fun hooks that would not leave my head for hours. And despite some lower fidelity production values, it became and still is a record that stands the test of time, as whenever I put it on still, I enjoy it as much if not more than when I 1st got into it.

And along with the music, Broken City has always had a somewhat of a deep, mystical concept behind it. I kind of think of post-apocalyptic stories (Scifi) when listening to it. Even with the closing cut "Under the Ground" the lyrics "a man came to me and said I'm better than you...better than you" which sort meant to me, kind of a adversarial mindset about how the people or lifeforms from above had made living above the surface un-live-able and they now needed to go under ground to try and survive. And given the man had lived under the ground, with it's different (if not extremely worse) conditions, he was in fact better or more tolerant/a-survivor than the main character in the story. There was a cheesy early 90's tv show starring Kate Hodge called "Shewolf of London" I recall which had an episode a bit like that with mole-people. And recently on Dr.Who there was something kind of similar. And I'm sure there have been plenty of other stories written in Hollywood and in literature (The Time Machine? a movie of the original George Reeves Superman?)

I got so into them, and the fact I could not find anyone else who really liked or would really check them out, it frustrated me, similarly to what went on soon after with another great band doing modern prog in North Carolina's House of Fools. It also hurt their ability to tour, at least in the States. I wished and still feel if I had the money (i.e. if I won the lottery) I would be interested in help funding a tour across the States for Bend Sinister.

So in 2007 after the band put up some new songs on their myspace page, a new ep was in the works. As it turns out, it was self-titled. It was around this time I was struggling with hearing compressed, clipping cymbals. And the new EP, like Broken City, pretty much was without a poor track. However, the cymbals clipping kind of hurt how much I enjoyed it. Three of the tracks, "Time Breaks Down," "Julianna" and "Yours Truly" it stuck out. Although songs like "TV War" and "High Horses" the compression problems didn't seem to be there or as notice-able. So while this new batch of songs I couldn't find myself in love with entirely, I still held a lot of optimism about them and the music they were writing.

But like it has become, obscure bands and how often they are heard from can be limited, even online. 2008 seemed to be a pretty quiet year for the band, as the new ep's release didn't lend to much more touring than I hoped to see. Nor news online about their next record. But then suddenly 1 day in late August I recall it was, they announced they had a brand new concept album coming out within a few weeks. It was to be a record they said was meant to be heard all at once. Very much in the tradition of concept albums they enjoyed. It was titled Stories of Brothers, Tales of Lovers.

And it did not disappoint. It was different than Broken City. More piano, more of a retro tone and texture to it. But it was still very well written music, and the band ultimately pulled off what they set out to do, as it does work better as one full listening. Much like Side 2 of Abbey Road for example. "I read the news today oh boy" The classic rock references/tributes were there, which came across very much part of it's charm. They weren't sounding like Wolfmother though, as they still sounded like the Bend Sinister I loved, but it was a nice change and an example how they were being progressive. They ended up playing the whole thing live as well, but sadly their tour never came across the border.

So then news came at the end of 2009, they ended up entering and winning 3rd place and $50,000 in a non-profit contest in British Columbia called the "Peak Performance Project." And now they are (at the time I wrote this) in the process of making their next record, in Toronto, which is far from their home in Vancouver. But they are starting to receive more exposure than ever before. Playing at the Rush Induction into the Canadian Music Hall of Fame (with both Geddy Lee and Alex Lifeson of Rush in attendance). And just a few weeks back, they did a showcase gig in New York City, which chances are, some record label people were in attendance.

Plus a new EP was released Spring Romance which includes 5 brand new tracks, very much in the vein and of the quality of the Stories of Brothers work. So, as it seems, the many years of enjoyment and optimism for this great band from Canada may finally be paying off for me as a fan. The near future sounds like it should be rather promising.

The only regret as fan thus far, beyond never seeing them live, is the fact their debut album The Warped Pane has been so elusive, I've never heard it, nor encountered anyone who has. I have read that it's an all instrumental album so, my sadness for that fact isn't maybe what it may be. But I still hope to hear it one day, as I at times can't get enough of this band.

Albums: Through the Broken City, Stories of Brothers, Tales of Lovers
Songs: Truth or Truth, Tough Love, Demise, High Horses, Hell or Shelter, Give Into the Night, Dr.Lee, Time Breaks Down, Through the Broken City/When Your Skin Makes Your Crawl


Previous Music Essentials

All Media Reviews Music Essential - Apes and Androids/Call Florence Pow
All Media Reviews Music Essential - Superior
All Media Reviews Music Essential - Mavahishnu Orchestra/Related Projects
All Media Reviews Music Essential - The Mars Volta

Friday, November 12, 2010

TV Show Cancelation Excuse Bingo


Card #1
Card #2
Card #3
Card #4
Card #5

In light of the recent cancelations of both Caprica and today AMC's Rubicon this was worth a laugh or two.

Star Trek TOS - William Shatner SNL - Get A Life - MyVideo

Thursday, November 11, 2010

AllMediaReviews Music Essential: Apes and Androids/Call Florence Pow

Apes and Androids/Call Florence Pow

The short-lived "Kokoro" blog is responsible for bringing the name Apes and Androids up to me I believe it was in February 2008, not too long before or after the official release date of Blood Moon.

I was just thinking earlier, in the 2+ years or so I've found myself attached to their album Blood Moon I've really never waiver-ed or doubted it's brilliance. I've probably never been so consumed by a band and their 1 single release like this (save for Soundscape's Discovery perhaps). Is it due to it's originality? perhaps. Is it due to it's obscurity? probably as well.

When I heard this album at 1st, well at 1st actually I was never able to get through it all, mainly due to bad timing. I'd put it on and get interrupted. I probably put it on five or six times between February/March and early May of 2008 without making it more than half way through. From memory, I believe that was only due to purely timing. I'd have something I needed to do at work, when in the middle of it.

And one other factor may have not helped, due to the fact the version I was playing was tagged inaccurately. The track numbers were labeled incorrectly.

But come May, I had found it had enough on it, that I wanted to make sure to give it more time. And even (not aware of) my playing it out of sequence, I was shocked and totally had my world turned upside down at exactly what this band was doing.

Was it humor? yeah it was. Was it subtle? yes, definitely. Did it have very well thought-out, fine-tuned melodies? yep. Somehow, these elements, along with using synthesizers with rock in a very trippy, hypnotic way, totally got my attention after about 3 times through. Their vocal harmonies went from what the fuck, to holy shit these guys can totally write and sing falsettos! Like Queen and David Bowie and Prince and even Pink Floyd.

Then the whole story/concept approach began to increase how much I began to consume this thing. It was some kind of futuristic Scifi space opera, that took what I perceived to be an influence of 80's Scifi cinema. "Apes and Androids" the ole Man vs Machine. The Terminator, The Matrix, Battlestar Galactica and some other stories crept into my mind as I tried to decipher any and all things from it.

Along with that, the rest of 2008, into 2009, this album just was one of those go-to records. Energy albums. The energy from track to track. The flow. It really was as much an escape and therapy album as anything else.

I probably played it 100 times over the course of 9 months. I still play it regularly. For one thing, it's still pathetically sad how few people know of the band, or have caught on to them. And in 2009, word came out they had to call it a day, at least for now. Blood Moon had been in the making for many years. Really going back to when David Tobias and Brian Jacobs were doing Call Florence Pow around 2002 or 2003.

I eventually started seeking any and all information and resources about Apes and Androids and especially the main 2 masterminds/songwriters David Tobias and Brian Jacobs. I came to learn they had a band under the name Call Florence Pow that released a debut lp called These Are the Plans in 2000, and then a follow-up ep titled The Strange Situation in 2002.

Call Florence Pow wasn't exactly like Apes and Androids, but it was still music I enjoyed. It was less electronic and more humorous I guess. But the music still had a lot of thought put into it. And it was definitely something I followed how those 2 guys evolved into the sound on Blood Moon.

Two other big things also came to light at that point about Apes and Androids.

For one, Call Florence Pow's 1st lp These Are the Plans... was released on "Spongebath Records" which was a record label founded by Matt Mahaffey. Mahaffey was a musical genius in a lot of ways himself, and actually worked with Apes and Androids and CFP on their music. He mixed and played drums on a little of Blood Moon for example. But Matt also had this project/band called sElf which as it turns out, seemed to be quite influential on the guys in A&A's, especially the CFP material. But one of the things about sElf was they had a rather extensive catalog of albums and songs. However, they were also rather hard to find hard-copies of. I would eventually track down most of the discs that were printed luckily. Gizmodgery, Breakfast With Girls, Subliminal Plastic Motives and Half-Baked Serenade. sElf also had a bevvy of songs and albums that were made available exclusively online.

I think sElf, truly had a big part in the foundation of Apes and Androids and the 1st CFP album. Although I've grown to love These Are the Plans... and The Strange Situation, probably even more than any sElf album at this point. But sElf have so much music, that still less than 2 years in, I am continuing to learn how much I enjoy their music as well.

But the other big part of what Apes and Androids and sElf to an extent, is it introduced me to a so-called genre of music that I 1st would describe as just electronic/electro experimental power-pop. But it's become more commonly known as "Indietronica." I suppose music that has or is thought-of as "Indie Rock" ("College Rock") but also features to varying degrees electronic elements.

Now some groups I had been a fan of before this like Mute Math, Pure Reason Revolution, Muse, Men Women, and Children, and even Chroma Key (or OSI) could be regarded as this style. And certainly those bands on paper kind of do have much of this sound. But where Apes and Androids differ is they kind of created an almost over- the-top cool way to use synthesizers within rock. They took more post-punk and 80's elements I suppose, with modern production standards. Thomas Dolby and The Talking Heads they could be compared to, as well Cafe Jacques and even a large glam side, that gave them comparisons to Sparks and of course David Bowie, along with a contemporary of theirs in of Montreal and certainly a big influence upon them in Beck.

But what I came to find is there were and continue to be many bands who have a similar approach in this style. Some of the better ones being bands like The Age of Rockets, The Chap, Emmanuel & the Fear and Late of the Pier. Sadly, as good as some of the bands who I've found doing this kind of music, none of them have come close to comparing to Apes and Androids. Which in a way sort of makes them stand out even more.

To add to all that, they came to be known as an outrageously unusual live band. At their concerts would feature the members dressing up in face-paint, have cheerleaders, props, tribal drummers, strobe lights, etc the whole 9 yards. Very much in the spirit of David Bowie's glammiest and Pink Floyd along with a Danny Elfman 80's horror element. The CFP track "Creepy Girls" was a staple piece especially. Sadly, they wouldn't play incredibly often, especially after the release of Blood Moon. So that made their concerts all the more special. One of the members was once quoted about their live approach "There isn't a ton left to do with Recorded music, so trying to be as original live is where an artist still can standout, and give their fans their money's worth."

Unfortunately I never got to experience that, but some of the live videos at least support how important their shows were to what they were about.

Albums: Blood Moon, These Are the Plans..., The Strange Situation EP
Songs: Riverside, Hot Kathy, Golden Prize, Johnny and Sarah, We Don't Understand You, Make Forever Last Forever, Periodic Table, Preparation For Battle, the Great 3 & 4 Part Tones


Wednesday, November 10, 2010

AllMediaReviews Music Essential: Superior


Sometime in 1996 or '97, back when the "Ytsejam Email list" was set up, this German band's debut album Behind for some reason got praised to no end for maybe a month or more. Ironically, I wasn't actually a subscriber to it, but I recall finding archives of "The Jam" as they called it and saw all the worshiping emails. So I took the plunge and ordered it from Impulse Music, my favorite new import company who also introduced me to prog metal/bands-for-dream-theater-fans Without Warning, Metropolis and later Angra.

I gave it maybe one or two listenings, and while I liked some of it, I didn't really follow all the heavy words or even comparisons to Dream Theater. I remember thinking the band Metropolis (who are also from Germany) were so much better than these guys, yet nobody on the jam/online prog/dream theater fan-base knew Metropolis.

Well Metropolis, I kind of lost some of my passion for, but one day after thinking/saying/posting online, Superior were "annoying thrash with piano," and seeing some surprising responses, I decided to give them another shot. And I began to appreciate their differences to Dream Theater. They really didn't sound much like Dream Theater. Their singer Michael Tangerman had a deeper voice than LaBrie. They used piano as a texture mainly. And their music was darker. Even the guitar work, while dense and versatile like Petrucci really was not nearly as focused on shredding and technicality, as power and force.

So then I began to really love Behind, namely the 1st couple of tracks "The Truth Ain't Kind" especially "Why" which is probably one of the best "progressive metal" songs ever written. So, I eventually checked out their 2nd album Younique which was quite different in a lot of ways. Incorporating lounge-y jazz and latin elements among other differences. But ultimately, it became a record I preferred over Behind.

My favorite track probably being "Nothing" which is one of those songs that sounds like it ends, but then repeats a section in a great way. Younique even had my favorite singer (especially at the time) Andre Matos of Angra on the track "Detect: Myself."

A year or 2 after enjoying both records a fair amount, I saw them at ProgPowerUSA live, which was kind of a big deal. They were the 1st band of the weekend to play, and really impressed most who caught their performance. Enough, the founder had a video of "Why" uploaded to the festival site I recall.

They ended up playing some new music at that show, that wound up on their 3rd and final album Ultima Ratio. Ultima Ratio was kind of a concept or even rock opera of sorts about an apocalypse with a deity coming to save the world. it was a bit religious in tone. Some comments mentioned it to almost be like a sequel to Queensryche's Operation Mindcrime. And that comparison both conceptually and musically, wasn't far off. Although like O:M, the concept never sucked me in enough to get attached to it. And that's why I regard it as the worst of Superior's three lps. However, it still has a number of good songs on it. "Fallen" "Broken" come to mind. It was certainly ambitious and at least different, and it could be seen as them being "progressive" in some ways I suppose.

The band had a 4th record in the can New World Order that was expected to come out sometime around 2007 or 2008. But the ole money issue killed it and the band's existence sadly. Insideout Music never even picked them up like they should have.

They did at least put out a double live disc and a rarities/demos that go back to the late 80's. So at least for fans there is more than just the 3 lps worth of material to have.

Superior were one of a number of interesting bands doing "progressive metal" that came after Dream Theater. And it's sad to know and see many other bands around who are far more blatantly derivative of Dream Theater, than them. They were unique (no pun intended) in many ways. And to this day, I feel it's pretty fucking sad how little recognition and familiarity they have, even among Dream Theater fans. Many of those fans, probably were not around in the late 90's when they were kind of the cat's ass. But their music is still out there to hear, so perhaps they'll find some new fans at some point like many disbanded bands seem to do.

Albums: Younique, Behind
Songs: Why, Nothing, Free-Minded, Detect: Myself, Broken, The Truth Ain't Kind


Tuesday, November 9, 2010

2010 Music Status

Eh, fuck it with my shit. Oh My god I'm mad at it...

As of right now:

The River Empires - The River Empires: Epilogue

Lehto & Wright - Children's Songs
Sufjan Stevens - The Age of Adz
Menomena - Mines
Cloud Cult - Light Chasers
Agalloch - Marrow of the Spirit
Janelle Monáe - The ArchAndroid
Foals - Total Life Forever
Warpaint - The Fool

Emanuel & the Fear - Listen
Oceansize - Self Preserved While the Bodies Float Up
The Reign of Kindo - This Is What Happens
Revere - Hey! Selim
Jazzkamikaze - Supersonic Revolutions
Timbre - Little Flowers
Pure Reason Revolution - Hammer & Anvil
Everything Everything - Man Alive
Timmy Sean - Songs From & Inspired By Noisewater

Bend Sinister - Spring Romance
Annuals - Sweet Sister
The Dear Hunter - Branches
Water & Bodies - Rain City Sessions Part 2
Sufjan Stevens - All Delighted People

The River Empires - Toast of the Snake King, Three Tigers
Lehto & Wright - Children's Songs, Betsy Bell and Mary Gray
Emanuel & the Fear - Jimme's Song (Full Band Version), Guatemala,
Foals - Spanish Sahara, Black Gold, Blue Blood
Menomena - Killemall, Boat
Warpaint - Undertow
Janelle Monáe - Faster, Cold War, BaBopByeYa
Pure Reason Revolution - Open Insurrection
Oceansize - Oscar Acceptance Speech
Sufjan Stevens - Impossible Soul, Vesuvius

this is just a short list. The hope is actual elaboration will take place with these along with a lot of the records (and songs even) not included here.

Warpaint Video/Post of the day

gorgeous version of "Billie Holiday" it almost looks like Jenny is shivering.

Monday, November 8, 2010

AllMediaReviews Essential Music: Mahavishnu Orchestra/Related Projects

Mahavishnu Orchestra/Solo sideprojects

When I was 1st introduced to "fusion" or more so known as "jazz-rock" around 2000 or 2001, Mahavishnu Orchestra along with Return to Forever and Weather Report were the 3 names stressed to me to be essential. And their classic period when they had the lineup of John McLaughlin (guitar), Jan Hammer (keys), Jerry Goodman (violin), Rick Laird (bass) and Billy Cobham (drums). That lineup was maybe best known for 2 records in particular. Birds of Fire and The Inner Mounting Flame. And it's funny how while I did like those albums, I never was as grabbed by them quite as much as by a couple of the others. For starters, one of the people who introduced me to Mahavishnu and most of the jazz-rock initially was also the cohost of the radio show I did on KFAI around that time. He also on 1 show, ended up playing some music from my favorite jazz (or related to jazz) record of all-time, Jerry Goodman and Jan Hammer's Like Children.

That show he played some of the stuff off that album really impressed me. He actually was so excited of finding a copy at the time, he didn't even announce what the artist was on the air until after playing several cuts off it. One of the tracks he played was the fat, lead bass melody track "Country and Eastern Music" which totally got my attention on what kind of album it was. So much so, I seek-ed it out only to find it was never issued on cd. I found a couple of tracks from a Jeff Beck Group live cd, and a Jan Hammer compilation, but finally around 2005 or 2006 Jan Hammer's back catalog was being issued or reissued on cd, and it was made available. The percussion and production stood out. It really flowed well, and unlike the other MO records, it really seemed to be less-is-more.

I recall not long after hearing some Like Children, my co-host brought in and played some music off the recently released disc The Lost Trident Sessions. I for some reason, enjoyed that album more than any of the actual MO albums I'd heard. I suppose part of that had to do with the fact it included some of the LC songs,"I Wonder" and "Stepping Tones" namely.

But over time, I just found that material, better, and the whole album working better as a whole. Not too long after, I picked up their live record Between Nothingness and Eternity which included a lot of that music as well, although I won't deny, that live album I haven't ever got too into, really nearly as much as like Weather Report's Live and Unreleased.

However, one live album I have got into, and enjoy a fair amount, just like, Goodman/Hammer's Like Children, is not an actual Mahavishnu album, but included their magnificent drummer Billy Cobham along with Frank Zappa alum George Duke, simply titled Live in Europe. While they didn't play any of the MO music, they were doing a cool, funky kind of jazz-rock. And one of the biggest things about that album, was actually the cover art. The drawings with their heads suspended by disembodied hands, was just too freaky and wacked-out for me to ignore. And it remains one of my favorite album covers to this day. Plus it looks really cool on vinyl.

Of course there were other sideprojects I came to enjoy. One being Billy's solo record Spectrum which by many is regarded as essential as any of the Mahavishnu albums, and any in jazz-rock.

And then John McLaughlin and his East-Indian-styled Shakti project. And while I have never been consumed by that, I have always considered it among, if not the best *fusing* of jazz and ethnic music. Plus the live experience seeing it is as unique a live experience I've ever had. I had known Zakir Hussein from seeing him play live with some different noteworthy performers. Fareed Haque, Kai Eckhardt and Steve Smith in the band "East Meets Jazz" along namely. So hearing Zakir play with McLaughlin was certainly as enjoyable as it sounds. With Shakti, it was in some ways the opposite of what McLaughlin was doing with MO. It was more flowing and free-form. Which admittedly, is best heard live, but the album I have, is still as good of a mood album that I have listened to in my music listening experience.

Another part of my experience with MO was how I have seen some people cover their music live. Probably most notably, Dean Magraw's band Eight-Head once played "Dance of Maya" at the Dakota Jazz club, and I was floored. Which part of that I'm not surprised since it's Dean and Eight-Head, but also part of that makes me wonder if my appreciation for these guys might be closer to many of their big fans, if I ever had the chance to see them live. I can say something similar about finally seeing Return to Forever back in 2008, but I'm skeptical if a true classic lineup reunion will ever happen. But who knows since a RTF reunion was often doubted as well.

But in the mean time, I hope more folks can discover them, and especially those related releases like Like Children and Live In Europe namely.

Albums: Like Children, The Lost Trident Sessions, Live In Europe, The Inner Mounting Flame
Songs: I Wonder, Stepping Tones, The Noonward Race, Country and Eastern Music
Sister Andrea, Full Moon Boogie, Dance of Maya, Earth (Still Our Home), Giving In Gently/I Wonder


Thursday, November 4, 2010

The Decemberists - The King Is Dead (2011) (1.0)

official site

Colin Meloy's twitter

And our new record is called . . .

(Can i get a drum roll, please?) 1:09 PM Nov 2nd via web

THE KING IS DEAD -- out January 18th, 2011!

Track list

1 Don't Carry It All
2 Calamity Song
3 Rise to Me
4 Rox in the Box
5 January Hymn
6 Down by the Water
7 All Arise!
8 June Hymn
9 This Is Why We Fight
10 Dear Avery

new song kind of like R.E.M. as 1 post on rym suggested. Maybe they're abandoning the prog thing? guess we'll see. The Hazards of Love sadly didn't live up to the hopes/hype ultimately. I hope this one resembles The Crane Wife more so.

2011 Music

This is just going to be a list of anticipated records right now. Some comments hopefully will follow soon enough. This is the same list I maintain here on my rateyourmusic page.

Water & Bodies
early 2011. 1st single in December

The Decemberists - The King Is Dead
d: 1/18/11

Deerhoof - Deerhoof vs. Evil (2011)
d: 1/25/11

Hotel of the Laughing Tree - Terror and Everything After (2011)
d: February 1st

Long Distance Calling - Long Distance Calling (2011)
d: 2/18/ - 2/21

Stateless - Matilda (2011)
d: February

The Dear Hunter - the Colors Spectrum EPs should be out early in the year. But Act IV more likely in 2012.

Fair to Midland

Bruce Peninsula
March or April I saw 1 quote.

Neverending White Lights - Act III: Love Will Ruin (2011)

Pain of Salvation - Road Salt Two (2011)
March 2011.

March or April

recording began in the Summer of 2010.

Protest the Hero

recording begins August 30th.

Thurisaz - The Cimmerian Years (2011)
early 2011

Age of Rockets, The
The Antlers
Bend Sinister
Between the Buried and Me

new EP is being recorded in December.

Blackfield - Blackfield III

The Dear Hunter/The Felix Culpa
A split is in the works.

Dream Theater
Emanuel and The Fear

Fates Warning
2010 it sounds like ain't happening.

The Human Abstract - Digital Veil (2011)
Klimt 1918
Late of the Pier
Local Natives
The Mars Volta
Meniscus - new EP
Ne Obliviscaris
Painted In Exile


The River Empires - Mars/Brighton II (2011)

Rush - Clockwork Angels (2011)
Scale the Summit
Sigmund Droid
Silent Film, A
This Will Destroy You
- Tunnel Blanket
Total Babe
Devin Townsend
- Deconstruction (2011)
Devin Townsend - Ghost (2011)

album is made, but no record label right now.

Van Halen
Steven Wilson

Steven Wilson + Mikael Akerfeldt - Storm Corrosion
Brooke Waggoner

Warpaint - live videos

Yourstru.ly Presents: Warpaint "Undertow" from Yours Truly on Vimeo.

Yourstru.ly Presents: Warpaint "Bees" from Yours Truly on Vimeo.

God sometimes I wish I could watch or even listen to their music without having any lustful ideas in my mind. It's-too-fucking-hard. At least at this point.

I mean I give up. They're all incredibly beautiful, and the fact their music is so good makes them even more attractive. Maybe this crush will fade over time, but I still hold a candle for Annie Haslam after all these years. Imogen Heap? I suppose so, although not as much on a physical level as I once did. Chloe Alper? yeah, she's still at times overwhelmingly beautiful. But the Warpaint girls are all flowers to me, and also I wish I could just be best friends with them as well. At this point I'd be happy to just have them book a concert in Minneapolis and be given 10 minutes to say hello, etc. Hopefully in 2011. Hopefully the fucking local radio stations (yeah you, 89.3 and Radio K) will start playing "Undertow" or any of their other songs off either The Fool or Exquisite Corpse.

Hot Prog Chics make me melt and I have no choice. I would marry Emily Kokal if she'd have me. Or for that matter probably any of them.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Need more time

as always. At least with the World Series over and the Concert season really slow, I hope I can do more in here.

I got I count 8 or 9 4.5 star albums in 2010 right now. Hopefully more will come soon in the last few weeks here. Agalloch, Between Two Skies, Shattered and maybe Water & Bodies.

Deerhoof is coming to the Triplerock on February 17th with 2 other bands. 1 being potentially good..like a synthy/jazzy/humor Apes and Androids sorta. I dunno. They're called Ben Butler and Mousepad

-Randy Moss is gone. We'll see how much it helps. The fodder is the entertaining circus that it can and often is though. Instead of 10-6, I think they go 6-10. Childress is fired. Frazier is hired.

-The Giants finally won. Cool. Now hopefully it'll be the Cubs turn. Say, within 10 years.

-Timmy Sean and Dominique Leone both put out recent good albums. I'm starting to dig them more now. From the same friend who introduced me to Emanuel & the Fear in fact. So if somehow the stars allign, I'll have to talk more about both of them in here.

-I need to write something about My Boys and Jordana Spiro not being in the NBC anthology show she was supposed to be. My Boys is done, but I never gave it a farewell goodbye.

-I need to watch The Tick, Two Guys a Girl and a Pizza Place among older tv shows.

-I need to write a short review about the 70's Vampire picture Count Yorga, Vampire and maybe the sequel, as I watched the 1st one this past weekend.

-I also need to add a bit more about Fall tv, especially the new shows. Especially The Good Guys which will be gone soon. I sure as hell hope by some miracle it gets renewed. I doubt it though. Bradley Whitford is actually going to be on The Kevin Pollak Chat Show in a few weeks.

-I'm kind of addicted to "Used Bin Radio" on Tuesday Nights 9-Midnight. I just wonder if calling in almost every week, they might get sick of me :p

-A blogger/writing/media forum kind of thing is next weekend at a spot on Nicollet Mall from 9am-2pm (not the Convention Center..at least I don't think. I don't think TMCC is even located technically on Nicollet Mall anyway). I do have a reservation for it. I will go hoping to find some kind of advice/insight either to do this more, do what I'm doing now, or maybe even quit this blog. I dunno, but it can't hurt to check it out I'd imagine.

-I wish the Psych College tour were coming here. Maybe next year/season? like I've said, Prince does live here now.

- The Citypages "Picked to Click" thing, I need to hear back from. But to be brutally honest, almost every band on that list sucked. Maybe it's indicative of the cliques and people who seem to influence the music community in this town, but I would hope I could at least get a vote, even if it's for 5-10 artists who nobody else will vote for. I mean Lehto & Wright? Greg Herriges? Between Two Skies? Empires? Nomia? Shattered? Media Addicts? Samosa? even Iron Thrones? NOWHERE to be found of course. blech.

-I need to check into Negroni's Trio..amazing jazz group I heard on Jazz 88 a few weeks back, that apparently only sell their music digitally (that I can tell).

more "I need to's" soon I imagine and hopefully more actual reviews/opinions and time wasting.