Sunday, January 29, 2006

Redirection is a joy unto itself.

Thursday, January 26, 2006

iTunes single of the week #2

Tina Deco - In The Red

Well, it's good, but frankly I'm uninspired. Particuarly when compared to her work with Zero 7.

Let's be fair to her, she can sing, and well at that. Bearing in mind that it's free, you may as well go and download it.

It's actually quite pretty, in a very raw fashion. Not unlike her, I guess you could argue. It's almost like a deliciously rendered slice through of urban ichor bleeding its salacious hidden diatribe and seditious whisperings all over my Persian rug.

Except that it's not that good. And I don't own a Persian rug, more's the pity.

Was a nice metaphor though.

Wednesday, January 25, 2006

Kill Your Preview

Today a guest article from "Ze Pop'n'Fresh":

Emo My Arse…

Thankfully Wikipedia is normally right, because when it suggested that Hundred Reasons were in fact Emo, I actually wanted to go to America, and introduce some Wikipedia servers to my good friend thermite.

But anyway now as the FBI are currently winging there way over to arrest me on terrorism offences, I had better make this Quick. The phantasmagorical POST HARDCORE band otherwise known as Hundred Reasons have some rather spiffing demo songs, from their upcoming album Kill Your Own available from their website ( ). Listen now, read later, as my article cannot do justice to the fantastic smorgasbord of musical glory that Hundred Reasons have come up with.

No Pretending

From the rapture of perfection that is the distortion at the opening, to driving Soundgarden inspired riffs, and from Colin Doran’s explosion of punk rock inspired vocals in the chorus, to the slow building to crescendo at the end off the bridge, this song is a cataclysmic landslide on the ears. Very much a new stylistic direction for HR, much more inspired by their punk rock heritage and driving rock riffs of the past, than the post-hardcore Brit rock style they have helped to define.

Kill Your Own

Wow, what an opening, once again homage to classic punk, with major rock overtones. The guitar riffs used are so chunky; you could wrap them in chocolate, and make a mint selling it to Cadburys! The vocal line while slightly more restrained than No Pretending, still rings of the energy and passion that only HR can put into a 3 minute long track. And just as you're ringing from the assault of the beginning half, the bridge and guitar solo kick you in the goolies with even more energy. I have heard some criticism that the song starts, and stops with no building of energy in the middle, but I am sure it will make a lot more sense in the context of the full album.

Tim - It's better than he makes out. And he makes it sound awesome.

This Mess

Would seem to be the obligatory quiet track needed these days… but the immortal words “my arse” spring to mind as soon as the song gets going. Very much Brit rock anthem inspired, with definite Coldplay (for want of a better band) overtones. This song rings of the energy and passion HR put into all of there songs, but also shows restraint and kickass song writing skills, combined with a musical talent so lacking in the British music scene today.

Overall V2 are looking like they made a good purchase when signing Hundred Reasons. They're back to form, (that I never really thought they lost, but the sales of sophomore effort Shatterproof is Not a Challenge show others don't agree) and overall it’s looking like a promising year for the band.

Kill Your Own is released on the March 20th 2006, and a full tour schedule accompanies it.

Tim - 1st of April. Rock City all-nighter. Hundred Reasons headlining. I have my tickets, why don't you?

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

It's emo time

Fall Out Boy - From Under The Cork Tree

The new darlings of the Emo scene! Knowing no more than the singles Dance, Dance and Sugar, We're Going Down I was briefly surprised by quite how heavy the album is. Even by how heavy those songs are when played at CD quality and pumped at a decent volume. It was a pleasant surprise that my ear drums experienced.

Its lyricism is a joy to my heart. I'm am continually amused by the song titles, my current favourite being the incredibley witty, Champagne For My Real Friends, Real Pain For My Sham Friends, closely followed by, I Slept With Someone In Fall Out Boy And All I Got Was This Stupid Song Written About Me. Genius I tell you. Genius. I'd call it, 'genius in a little box,' but there's nothing little about it. It doesn't actually sound especially big, but it has an interesting sense of scope that makes it somehow sound bigger than it is.

I feel that for what it is this is high praise indeed.

It's a lesson in euphoric pop-punk falling like honey from the lips of an orphaned emo child whose eyeliner is smeared messily across their left cheek. (It's important it's the left one, don't ask me why, just go with it.) It is, however, not actually honeyed. It's melodic and yet as raw as the genre currently seems to have room for. Certainly if you know rawer pop-punk-esque emo I'd love to hear it.

While playing to its own cliches it nonetheless seems both energetic and fresh without actually projecting the naviety and freshfaced-ness that is surprisingly common. Its invictive has the force required to backup its clumsily pretentious lyricism.

Dear light it's fun.

Monday, January 23, 2006

iTunes single of the week

Seems worth my while to talk about these.

This week:

Killa Kella - Jawbreaker

It briefly amused me because it has beatboxing, lots and lots of beatboxing, but lets be honest, it's utter crap.

There you go, I can be succinct occasionally.

Sunday, January 22, 2006

"Welcome to the suck"

Quick aside, from trailers it seems they're making a film of the comic book V for Vendetta. I'm surprised that I hadn't heard of it yet, and kinda saddened that to be honest for such a critically acclaimed book the trailer looked fairly rubbish. Just hope the film is better.

Anyway, I saw Jarhead last night. My conclusion: it's amazing.

I would recommend that everyone see it once. I say that because it is very visually arresting and moves more than once towards shocking. The thing is; it's brutal, it's existential and it's extremely real. Personally I think it's important. Dreadfully important in a way that is slightly horrifying.

It's visceral, it stabs straight into the gut. I also found the political commentary on the more recent war in the gulf to be sharp and very cutting.

It's in many ways hard to define, and I know quite a few of the people I saw it with were shocked and maybe even disgusted by it, but it burns its message inexorabley on the inside of your eyelids. It's beautifully shot and directed, some of the images were just simply stunning. Beautiful in a way, assuming "beautiful" means that you can't help to appreciate the artistry of something so horrendously tangible and absolute that strikes a cord deep within the psyche and uses your appreciative outrage to elict a response to agree with it.

War doesn't make sense. It changes you.

Every war is different, every war is the same.

Whatever else he may do with his life - build a house, love a woman, change his son's diaper - he will always be a jarhead. And all the jarheads killing and dying, they will always be me. We are still in the desert.

Welcome to the suck.

Tuesday, January 17, 2006

Welcome one and all

Welcome to my new little corner of the blogosphere!

Essentially, I wanted somewhere slightly more sensible than my Livejournal with which to inflict my own special brand of highly pretentious art reviews upon the world. To clarify, by art I mean something like "music that I listen to and films that I watch and books that I read and stuff that I see and cutting social commentary." Something like that, but punctuated properly and without the tongue crippling run on sentence.

I thought to kick off I'd rabbit for a little about something that I love as opposed to something I've obtained fairly recently. Let's set the scene: I adore Muse. They're one of my favourite bands. It's Autumn 2003. I have tickets to see them in November. They have a new album out. It's called Absolution. I knew I was going to love it before I heard it. I'm sure I just sat and looked at the cover art, absorbing it for a while before I even put the CD in the player.

And did I love it? Did I how.

Muse - Absolution

There recently seems to've been something of a buzz about this album. When I realised this I was subtlely confused because, as mentioned, it's now over two years old and while still being both incredible and incredibley important it's intrustion into the popular consciousness should by now have moved to a more stately level where it sits recognised as a small slice of greatness.

Admittedly it didn't take long for it to process that there hasn't actually been a buzz about it at all. Instead what's happened is that lots of people within my social circles have discovered them and are beginning to rave about Absolution. My copy of it is floating around in that circle somewhere. So I suppose it's my fault for having impeccable taste. What can you do?

Muse had always been somewhat dark and apocalyptic, and Origin of Symmetry had even gathered something of a towering dignity in its sharp bleak stylings. Absolution was in many ways the fufilment of this promise, it is truely dark and it's the most apocalyptic piece of music I've ever heard. Don't mistake that, it is one solid piece of music, it really has to be listened to as an album and it does (like all Muse really) take a bit of work to get. It isn't easy listening.

What it is however, from the first growing staccato stomps of the Introduction to the last classical wails of Ruled By Secrecy is a gothic soundscape. It's like entering a cathedral of innovative art-rock. Except it isn't really a cathedral, it's a gothic castle clinging to an outcropping of rock over a great precipice in Southern Romania. It's St Paul's set against majestic thunderclouds. It's the Sistine Chapel after it's been hit with a nuclear weapon or twelve. It's beautiful, august musical deconstruction painted in fantastical shades of puse and midnight.

Frankly it's amazing.

Stand out tracks: Hysteria, Butterflies and Hurricanes, The Small Print.

Get it. Get it now.