Thursday, November 13, 2008

Venting the Anger: Webwasher

So for those of you that visit here, you might have noticed a lack of posts lately. This is due to one thing...Webwasher. I usually post at work, during the morning, lunch, or after school mainly because with 2 small kids it's hard to find time at home.

So no biggie right? Wrong. Out of nowhere I go to log on to Blogger and find it has been blocked, User Defined, which means someone at our school or district thought we shouldn't have access to Blogger at work and blocked it.

Well here lies the problem, not that I can't blog at work (even if it is during my free time), we have been told to "embrace technology". Blogger was talked about as a tool to help connect us with the students. We could post homework or start threads about topics. Heck in BTSA ( a state mandated course) we were told we had to start a blog for the class. In fact, of you look at my first few posts they were in relation to BTSA. I didn't turn it into what it is now until I realized that I didn't need a blog because I had a class website.

So what happens now? I talked to our tech guy and he is looking into it. That was two weeks ago and still nothing. I will find a way to post my top 10 albums, which is pretty much set in stone. But I did want to post my favorite categories...so we will wait and see.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Synchroblogging: why not?

Ok I love reading this blog, Right on the Left Coast, and I saw this topic on synchroblogging, where everyone writes about the same topic...so why not. The topic is "I'm usually in a good mood (or being myself) when..." so without further ado...

I'm usually in a good mood (or being myself) when...

* I am with my wife and kids just sitting in our playroom watching our daughter play with her kitchen set and our son stare at her with love and amazement.

* I am my family and I take a walk to the local park and we get to watch our daughter run around and have fun.

* I am working out (mainly lifting weights, the elliptical trainer does bore me)

* I am listening to PMS or Fusion on KLAC AM 570, those guys just make me laugh.

* I am watching any of the following shows; The Soup, Battlestar Galactica, Star Wars: The Clone Wars, or Pardon the Interruption.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Who Decides: Best Comeback Album

Ok first off it's been about a month since my last post, my bad. I have been busy with work and two beautiful kids, but I am not complaining. I love spending time with them.

So back to the topic at hand. I have mentioned that there are a ton of great albums this year and doing a top 10 is going to be difficult. I have it down to 12, but that is without a few other albums that are still to come. So to make sure I highlight some of the ones that won't make the top 10, I am giving you some categories just for fun.

So first category is the Best Comeback Album of the Year. now most would give this to Metallica, but seriously they didn't go anywhere. I liked all of the Load albums and St. Anger had its moments...so they are out of the running. This might have gone to Guns N Roses, but I will believe that one when I see it. Seriously, I have been waiting for that album since I was in high school...HIGH SCHOOL!

So who is it? How about Testament's The Formation of Damnation? Yes, this is a definite comeback album because Testament was left for dead a few years ago. In fact the last album with original material was 1999's The Gathering. They went in the studio in 2001 and re-recorded some songs from their first 2 albums and it seemed like a new album was around the corner. Well, line-up changes and a death scare for their lead singer and the album was pushed back. Then the infamous reunited/reunion tour which lead to a live album. And then all of sudden word that a new album with most of the original members was announced.


So would we get an album like Low or The Gathering or would it be a more mainstream album like The Ritual? Well this album is more in tune with Low...which is great because that's my favorite album. Chuck Billy doesn't use his growls as much as he did on The Gathering, but they are there. He has that perfect mix of rough and classic metal singing that was present on First Strike Still Deadly. As for the music, don't worry about another The Ritual (slower/more melodic) this thing is fast as...well you know. The guitar work is awesome as well. Some were worried about Alex returning to the band because of his solo work was very jazz/pop oriented. Well he must have missed playing the fast stuff because he slays. Check out F.E.A.R. he worte the entire song...classic Testament. Along with Eric Peterson, they combine to show these new kid guitarists just how it's done.

There really isn't any filler on this album. It is top notch Bay Area Thrash. My favorite songs; More Than Meets The Eye (great guitar work), The Evil Has Landed, The Persecuted Won't Forget, Henchmen Ride, Afterlife, F.E.A.R.

Monday, September 29, 2008

What we've got here, is ... failure to communicate.

If you know your movie quotes, this one comes from Cool Hand Luke, starring Paul Newman, who passed away this past weekend. Now I must say I have missed a lot of Mr. Newman's movies through the years, but this one holds a special place for me.

When I was in high school our football coach showed us movies before games to get us relaxed and focused. Now, we rarely finished the movies...in fact we might have finished one in the two years he was here. So my sophmore year he puts on this movie Cool Hand Luke. Now of course, there were two things I remembered about the movie. First the quote, it was used in Guns N Roses Civil War. And second, the egg eating scene ("Get mad at em eggs!") classic. Well we never finished it. Then my junior year, he showed it again. I still liked the entire movie, of what I saw. It was a good combination of showing how to never give up dispite the odds and make the best of a given situation. Once again, we didn't finish the movie.

So fast forward 3 years later. I am in college and on a Saturday morning what is on, but Cool Hand Luke. So I figure "let's see how this thing ends." Well I don't want to spoil it, but the main character (Paul Newman) dies in the movie. Gets shot...talk about your WTF?!?!?! moments. I was so upset.

Looking back it's kinda funny. To think all those years, I thought there was some sort of "happy ending" and that's how it ended. Too funny.

So I plan on watching more of Paul Newman's films starting with Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid...I hear that's a classic.

Friday, September 26, 2008

Thoughts Without Words: Back to School

So here it is the day after Back to School night. The turn out was ok I guess, nothing special, but when it comes to high school we usually don't get many parents. I have a ton of freshman (like you didn't know that already) and they showed up and asked some questions. The night got off to a rocky start with a parent questioning me about his kid cheating and me not enforcing other rules. Really fired me up, but it was all good because he came in later and apologized for what he said because when he told his son what I said his son confessed that he lied (there's a shocker!). So it was nice to get an apology from a parent for being in the wrong...in fact that might be the first for me.

Nothing else stood out from the night. Our principal gets up and talks to the parents while we all sit there and I am thinking..."why are we here?" Not at back to school night, but at that part of it. Ok have the teachers that are recognized show up, but let everyone else just sit in their rooms and get ready for the parents.

Actually, there was one parent who wanted a syllabus for the year. I have a course outline describing procedures, but I haven't had a parent request a syllabus ever. In this day and age of using assessments to determine pacing it was surprising to get that question.

It was an ok night, but it just makes today so much more challenging. Oh well, next up Open House...super.

Friday, September 19, 2008

Venting the Anger: Motivating Students

So with all this No Child Left Behind nonsense, schools are trying their best to get their API scores over 800 and by 2013 have all of their students be proficient or advanced in all the tests. Now, don't get me wrong I think testing students to see what they learned is good. But there is no accountability on the students if they do bad. I won't get into the students aspect too much because I touched on it HERE.

So schools are trying to motivate students to do better. At this particular school, some of the staff and administrators told the students if they met their goal then they would shave their heads (http://www.dailybulletin.com/ci_10504495). BTW, their goal was 9 points...NINE POINTS!!! The state re-adjusts scores more than 9 points sometimes. So they met their goal and off goes the hair. Everyone is happy, it's a great photo op for the school and kids.

But what are we teaching these kids...to get them to do their best there must be a reward. What happened to motivation coming from within? When you wanted to do your best just to show you could. We have created a generation of kids that will always expect something in return for them doing their job. I have students that are constantly asking "what do we get if..."

Suicide rates are climbing for younger children and this is part of the problem. These kids are allowed to fail or even do a simple task without some sort of reward. When they finally encounter some sort of resistance, they panic and don't know what to do. Look at what a school district in Dallas, Texas did. They changed their grading policy to include the following:

•Homework grades should be given only when the grades will "raise a student's average, not lower it."

•Teachers must accept overdue assignments, and their principal will decide whether students are to be penalized for missing deadlines.

•Students who flunk tests can retake the exam and keep the higher grade.

•Teachers cannot give a zero on an assignment unless they call parents and make "efforts to assist students in completing the work."

•High school teachers who fail more than 20 percent of their students will need to develop a professional improvement plan and will be monitored by their principals. For middle school the rate is 15 percent; for elementary it's 10 percent. (from: http://www.dallasnews.com/sharedcontent/dws/dn/latestnews/stories/081608dnmetdisdgrading.4627fe2.html)

I really don't want to see what the future holds for this country.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Who Decides: Potential top 10 2008

Ok with the released songs on the internet and most of these albums actually being released, I have a potential top 10. Now there are at least 2 more albums that I am looking forward to, Deadlock and Becoming the Archetype. Other than those I feel like I have heard what I needed to hear.

Anyway new list here we go:
Metallica - Death Magnetic
Testament - The Formation of Damnation
Trivium - Shogun
Into Eternity - The Incurable Tragedy
Exmortus - In Hatred's Flame
All That Remains - Overcome
Eluveitie - Slania
Textures - Silhouettes
The Haunted - Versus
Protest the Hero - Fortress

BTW, here is my mid year list

1. Testament: Formation of Damnation
2. Mercenary: Architect of Lies
3. Biomechanical: Cannibalized
4. Protest the Hero: Fortress
5. Eluveitie: Slania
6. Mygrain: Signs of Existence
7. Textures: Silhouettes
8. Warrel Dane: Praises to the Warmachine
9. 36 Crazyfists: The Tide and Its Takers
10. Machinery: The Passing

Notice, all the changes. Maybe Biomechanical sneaks in over Textures, but this is a solid ear for thrash guitar solo driven albums! Also Bullet for My Valentine just keeps growing on me...why? I gotta say that Mygrain is a solid album as is Mercenary. I will probably do a top 20 this year, but it's all about the top 10.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Thoughts Without Words: Metallica - Death Magnetic

The year might as well end this weekend because I have found my album of the year...and it's name is Death Magnetic. This thing is killer. From start to finish this is what should have and easily could have been. In fact, if you take away the guitar solos and put in the crappy tin drums you have St. Anger. The riffs, the length of songs, and the lyrics are all kind of similar. One of the songs, The End of the Line, reminds me of Some Kind of Monster.

But the solos and drums are back and so is Metallica. I am a solo kind of guy and Kirk goes nuts on this album. It's like they were saying "geeze, sorry we screwed you out of the last album...do what you want." The solos on this album are the kind I love. Just when you think they are done, they keep going and going and going.

It's not Master of Puppets 2, but for me it is better than The Black Album and the Loads. But the Loads weren't made to be thrash metal, so that's not fair to say. It does fit nicely between And Justice for All and TBA.

Favorite song: All Nightmare Long

Tuesday, September 09, 2008

Venting the Anger: Aeries Gradebook Program

Ok so our school is starting to implement a new gradebook program that will allow parents to log in from home/work and see their child's grade anytime they want. Well that's nice, what could be the problem? The fact that this program is by far the worst piece of you know what that ever existed. Now let me say this first, I am not a tech-phobe that wasn't willing to give up my current program. In fact, I was on board from day one. I mean this is going to cut down all those parent requests for grades. I set up my classes, gradebooks, assignment types, and seating charts on the first day. I was going around helping people set up all of their gradebooks too. I was gung-ho.

So then I actually started to use it. I can't even begin to tell you how bad it is. Ok, first off the seating chart. Most, if not all, gradebook programs let you drag the students anywhere you want on your grid and drop them in (drag n drop). This one was more of playing Battleship. Numbers for rows and letter for columns. Ok, so I set that up and was ok with it. But when I tried to print it out, it was too small. So when I switched to a photo view, it printed out on two pages. Not to mention the freshmen photos haven't been uploaded yet...and we know how many freshmen I have this year.

*UPDATE* as I was writing this post, we got word that they added the drag n drop system. Now this is a start, but there is no preset grid or an option to add one. For my students the boxes aren't the same size so I can't line up my rows, and for one of my classes I couldn't put a student in the front seat...it would jump him back kind of like trying to push two magnets together that have the same poles.

So onto the gradebook itself. Now entering is kinda like every other gradebook, but one thing you notice is that you can't view the entire gradebook at once. You can view it by assignment. If you want to see the entire gradebook you need to go to a print preview report. And if you want to know the assignments, instead of just the numbers, you need to check a box.

That's another thing...who was the genius that decided to make it so you have to check boxes? Don't they know we are busy and don't have time to check boxes. You need to check a box to see the assignments, check a box to see the letter grade, check a box to finish grading an assignment. That's right you can enter all of your grades, but nothing is calculated until you check a little box!

Fortunately, my wife had bought Making the Grade last year so I have reinstalled it on my computer. Oh yeah, that's another thing. They reformatted all of our computers over summer and didn't reinstall any of the gradebook programs...coincidence? Who knows. I am back up and running though.

This is going to be a huge...huge problem next year if they don't fix these problems. Technology is supposed to help us in our jobs, this doesn't. I would go as far as to say it adversely effects our jobs.

Sunday, September 07, 2008

A Future Uncertain: Predications 2008-2009

So I am doing something different this year in my classes. I am having them write a letter to themselves explaining what they hope to accomplish in class and how they are going to do it. They also talk about things they are worried about or excited to do. On the flip side, they also get to make predictions about the year itself; who will win the Super Bowl, who will be President, if they will still be friends with whoever. So in the spirit of doing what my students are doing here are my 2008/2009 predictions.

School:
* I will learn to embrace the freshmen and take care of them...parenting instincts.
* I will have a higher number of first semester failures, due to the high amount of freshmen.
* Our football will beat Diamond Bar and make the playoffs...barely, but they will.
* Girls sports in general will continue to dominate boys in terms of league titles and wins.
* 5th period will end up being my favorite class, but wouldn't have been in my top 3 from last year.

Life:
* McCain will squeak out a victory because of the way Palin handles her daughters pregnancy.
* Cowboys (ugh!) will win the Super Bowl
* Angels will go into the playoffs has the favorite to win the World Series, but lose in the 2nd round.
* Metallica's Death Magnetic will still be my favorite album into 2009.
* Battlestar Galatica won't live up to the hype, but will leave me wanting more.

Friday, September 05, 2008

The Sun Always Shines on T.V.: Tivo & Directv


I know this post has nothing to do with a tv show, but it deals directly with my tv viewing habits. A few years ago, Directv created it's own D.V.R. (vcr with no tapes) and announced that they were phasing out Tivo. In fact, when Directv switched from mpeg2 to mpeg4 all the old Tivo boxes were pretty much done. Meaning all the new HD channels you couldn't get with tivo, you had to go with Directv's craptacular dvr box.

Well I made the switch last year and I absolutely hate this box. There are many many things I don't like with it, but the worst part is that you can't pause one channel switch to another and come back right where you left off. In our house, we still have our old tivo box, that gets 2 HD channels and we hooked up an antenna to get all the locals. And in our living room sits our new Directv dvr that we hardly use...it's that bad.

I was ready to make the switch to Verizon FIOS as soon as it was available to my area, but now I might wait to switch back to tivo.

http://ap.google.com/article/ALeqM5hfeWhR7NR2bMcNgraw9iZyBZuRdAD92VFQ0G0

Saturday, August 30, 2008

Thoughts Without Words: 1st week done

Well one down...30 some to go. It's nice to have a 3 day weekend after starting school again. But at the same time it's a tease. Anyway, back to the subject at hand...my classes. It's funny to see how everyone is trying so hard the first week of school. Everyone, for the most part, is about 5 minutes early to class and everyone is doing homework. It's hard to tell how my classes are going to turn out. I realized that this is the first time since my first year teaching that I don't have a bunch of "returning" students...not from failing but just moving on from Algebra B to Geometry to Algebra 2. I have a few from summer school, but that's about 6 or so. It feels weird not to know my students. I know it will take time, I really enjoyed my first year, so I know I will enjoy these kids too. Other than that...no complaints.

I don't think I will be doing spotlights this week unless it's for an album of the week. Which might be coming up pretty soon.

Friday, August 29, 2008

Insignificant: Beyond the Embrace - The Riddle of Steel

Ok new tag, Insignificant. These posts will talk about those songs/albums/shows that really don't get a lot of respect, but seriously deserve it.

The first post has to go to Beyond the Embrace's instrumental song The Riddle of Steel from their album Against the Elements. This song has all the making of a classic instrumental. A nice slow intro then bursting into some killer soloing. This song has some strong Iron Maiden type guitar harmonies going on. My favorite part of the song is the build up about half way through. It starts off with an acoustic guitar, then some well placed drumming, and then more of the Iron Maiden type harmonies with some more perfect drumming that just builds and builds until...perfection! Like every great instrumental, you come full circle and play the intro again, but after that just when you think the song is all over all of sudden there is a piano that starts to play and it fades out with a pure piano song with some strings & acoustic guitar to accompany it.

Metallica probably have the most famous instrumentals with Orion and Call of Ktulu, but this one for me ranks up there...probably better than Call of Ktulu.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

School: 1st thoughts...

Freshmen...soo many freshmen. Seriously, I might as well be their class adviser that's how many I have. Basically about 75 - 80% of my classes are freshmen. There's pros and cons to this.
Pros: * they listen better (for the most part). It's all brand new to them and you can get their attention pretty easy.

Cons: * they aren't used to the high school style of taking responsibility.
* they still act like they are in junior high
* they're FRESHMEN!

This is totally new for me, so I will see how it goes. It's weird not having any seniors though. This is the first time in 4 years I don't have seniors. I have one, who doesn't need my class and might leave. yikes!

Sunday, August 24, 2008

More...More: new singles released

Ok with the school year coming to a start and the actual calendar year wrapping up (only 4 months left), the fall releases are starting to give some samples or even singles for what's to come. So here is a quick look at what's on it's way.

Of course, if you read any sort of metal news you know Metallica is releasing their new album in September. Here is the first single off of it, The Day That Never Comes. I have heard people call this a modern day One or Sanitarium...uh no. It's a solid song especially the last 2 minutes or so, feels like Iron Maiden. Oh yeah and there is a part of an older song from Load or Reload in there...gotta find it though.


Next up is a surprise for me, Deadlock. Why? They just released an album last year and it was fantastic! So what will this one sound like? Who knows, but one of the songs from it was "leaked" and it sounds like it came off of Wolves. BTW, Deadlock play a style like At the Gates, with a male and female vocalists...don't worry the girl doesn't go all Arch Enemy on us. First song: Kill, Kill, Kill (nice huh?)


Also have some All That Remains that they have put out. Now ATR have never had tow albums sound alike...as I said before. So what do I expect? Nothing. But here is my favorite song I have heard so far. If you want more just type All That Remains Overcome into YouTube and you will see the others. I give you Before the Damned.



Now I have talked about Trivium's new songs and gave a sample here. I actually think this will be better than The Crusade, but I don't know about Ascendancy yet.

Oh and then out of nowhere Unearth releases this song...My Will Be Done. Unearth is the Iron Maiden of metalcore...ya heard one song you have heard them all. Well not this one. A little guitar lead in the intro and a hint of a solo has my interest peaked a bit for this release.


All in all this is going to be a solid 4 months of releases. I expect my top 10 to change dramatically, but that's life. Can't wait.

Friday, August 22, 2008

Last weekend before...well you know

My room is all set up. It looks pretty good. I have a few posters to hang up, but that won't take long (I forgot them on Wednesday and Thursday). Still waiting for my individual scores to come in and see how I did. I don't know what to think anymore. I looked at the state's website on test results and they break it down by grade level. And for Algebra 2 juniors, the proficient rate wasn't too high and I had a lot of juniors...not a good sign. I tried my best and worked hard. I will wait and see the results and go from there.

It really doesn't matter because I'm not teaching Algebra 2 this year, I am back on Geometry. Last time I had Geometry, I thought I prepared them for the test, but out of 32 students I had 19 at basic...which is not good enough. I incorporated a lot of multiple choice questions into the test to get them ready, but apparently that didn't work. We will try again this year.

I did get 1st period off, which is what I wanted because it's pretty tough to get two kids out the door by 6:30. So we can take an extra 30 minutes to get ready. So my schedule for this year looks like this:
2 - 4 Algebra B
5 & 6 Geometry

Sunday, August 17, 2008

More...More: The Haunted

So a couple days ago I posted the new Metallica song, Cyanide. Now I will tell you this now, nothing is going to top a new Metallica album...nothing. Into Eternity and Trivium will come close, but it won't beat it. Another band which will be up there in terms of favorite album will be The Haunted.

The Haunted have gone from a total death thrash band, first 3 albums, to a more of a melodic thrash, last 2 albums. This new song, Moronic Colossus, seems to do a good job of combining the 2 styles. Their new album Versus is coming out in September. Let me say this September is a busy month for music, Metallica, Trivium, Into Eternity, and now The Haunted.

Side note: the cover for their new album reminds me of their debut artwork...so simple.
Debut -
Versus -
Anyways...here's the new song, Moronic Colossus.

BTW, just for fun...here is my favorite The Haunted Song, D.O.A. It was off their 3rd album One Kill Wonder. Different singer and more death metal style...awesome.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

The Wait: STAR results...2 days away

So believe it or not, I actually care a lot about my test scores. And for most of the summer I have been going to Edusoft to see if the scores have come in. Well tonight I went to the CA Department of Education sight and saw that this Thursday at 10:30 AM the STAR results will be posted. So that means I should be able to look up my scores sometime that day or close to it.
I put a lot of effort into my Algebra 2 classes this year to get them ready. I am curious to see if it paid off or not. I will admit now, that I didn't push my Algebra B classes as hard as I did last year and went sort of cruise control doing the same things, but I am not sure if I pushed the students themselves. Perhaps I was too focused on my Algebra 2 classes. Who knows. Does it really matter what I do? When it all comes down to it - Coaches got to coach, players got to play, cheerleaders got to cheer, teachers got to teach, and students got to take the test.

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Now playing: Five Finger Death Punch - Ashes
via FoxyTunes

More...More: New Metallica song

it's a day I have been waiting for awhile now... a new Metallica song, Cyanide. It's a live recording from a few days ago. Awhile ago some reporters got a 6 song sample and most agreed this was one of the weaker songs. What does that mean? This thing is gonna rock! I love the chorus on this song and the different song structures. Some people have said it's like they threw together 3 or 4 left over songs and made them one. I don't believe that and let me just add the solo is awesome. Go to their Myspace page for a soundboard recording of it or watch the video below.

Monday, August 11, 2008

Who Decides: Top 5 "Must Own" Metal Albums

So just what are the best of the best metal albums? Well obviously, it's purely subjective. But I am going to give you, what I consider, the best metal albums ever. These are the must own metal albums. If you consider yourself a fan of metal, these albums should be in your collection.


1. Metallica: Master of Puppets - Is there really any explanation needed here? This is their masterpiece. It all came together on this album. The heavy riffs, melodies, solos, and the progression in the song writing. It's as if the stars aligned perfectly for this one.


2. Megadeth: Rust in Peace - This is Megadeth's shining moment for me. It was the debut album of the "classic" line-up and they brought their A game. From the start it's apparent that this isn't going to be another So Far, So Good, So What. Production is better, lyrics are more politically charged, and the guitar work between Dave and Marty is so great they still haven't been album to reproduce it. I know everyone knows Hangar 18 from Guitar Hero, but this entire album could be made into a Guitar Hero game...simply insane.

Now, people will argue about these two albums. In all honesty, the first 4 albums from both Metallica and Megadeth are metal classics and should be owned by any metalhead. These are my favorites and show the best of what 80's/90's thrash was all about.


3. At the Gates: Slaughter of the Soul - This is melodic death metal at it's finest. Bands are still trying to duplicate the sound and style on this album. Whether it be Tomas' vocals or the Iron Maiden-esque guitar work, they are still trying to get it right. This was my first "death metal" album and I was blown away by the overall thrash feeling I got from it. What also makes this album a "must own" is the fact that the band broke up after they released this album. Imagine Metallica breaking up after MoP...yeah just like that.


4. Into Eternity: Buried in Oblivion - If you were to combine the first 3 albums on this list, you would come close to creating the sound of Into Eternity. A band that really created it's own genre, combining thrash, death metal, progressive metal, and some soft rock thrown in for fun. Now when this album was made, Into Eternity had 3 vocalists...yes I said 3, screamer, death growls, and a clean singer. The vocal harmonies alone are a reason to own this album, but there is a ton more. Do you want the guitar harmonies or solos which are insane or do you want the quick hitting tempo changes? Most songs you know whats coming next, but the first time I played this album everything hit me from out of nowhere. Perfect example, after an entire album of controlled chaotic metal, in come a ballad that sounds like it was left off of Peter Cetera's solo album...seriously, but it works - perfectly.



5. Killswitch Engage: Alive or Just Breathing - huh? a metalcore band? Yeah, a metalcore band. Just like At the Gates, KsE created a genre which bands are trying to copy to this day. Stop me if you heard this before, brutal drumming, screaming vocals, heavy riffs with clean choruses and some breakdowns...sounds like every metalcore band in the last 5 years. Well, it all started with KsE and no one has been album to beat them at it. I will never forget the first time I heard the verses being sung with such anger and forcefullness and then...such beauty in the choruses. This band, along with Shadows Fall, helped bring metal back to the mainstream after the disaster that was nu-metal.

There they are...5 must own metal albums.

Wednesday, August 06, 2008

The Sun Always Shines on T.V.: More Spin City

I forgot to mention one of the cooler things about Spin City. Not only was it a great show, but it was created by the same guy that created Scrubs (we all know how I feel about that show). Anyway, a majority of the cast of Spin City has appeared at least once on Scrubs...as different characters, but still cool none the less.

Let's look at the cast of Spin City;
Michael J. Fox
Alan Ruck
Michael Boatman
Heather Locklear
Barry Bostwick
Richard Kind
Alex Chaplin
Connie Britton
Victoria Dillard
Jennifer Eposito
Charlie Sheen

Out of that cast all but the last 5 have been on Scrubs. That's a pretty big feat to get those stars to be on the show. It goes to show you how much they liked working for the creator of the series. BTW, Charlie Sheen probably hasn't been on the show because he has been busy with his own show, Two and a Half Men, which airs on a different network.

Tuesday, August 05, 2008

Tirades of Truth: Trivium - The Crusade

Continuing to preview new albums by looking back at old ones, today we look at Trivium's The Crusade. A little history on Trivium, this is a young band. Their debut was recorded while they were still in their teens. I wasn't too impressed with the debut, mainly because of the production. Their next album Ascendancy is a classic. No filler, every song works. Perfect blend of screams and clean singing. Something else you need to know about the band is their worship of Metallica. I love Metallica as much as the next guy, but I think their "love" made The Crusade a little weaker.

The album starts off with a pretty good song, Ignition, but one thing that pops out right away is the total absence of screams. It's all clean vocals. Some say Matt sounds like a young James Hetfield, but I didn't think so. After awhile you get used to the vocals and realize it's not a bad thing.

Musically, this album is pure thrash...80's - 90's thrash. Tight drumming, great riffs, and some insane guitar solos. The last song, The Crusade, is an instrumental (another Metallica worship?). It is probably the best or close to the best song on the album. It does bring back memories of classic Metallica instrumentals from Ride the Lightning or Master of Puppets the way the song comes "full circle". Other songs as just as good, Entrance of Conflagration is killer. In fact all the songs are great. It's the vocals you have to get used to to enjoy the album.

So why didn't this album work for me? Mainly because it didn't sound like Trivium. It reminded me of Motley Crue's self titled album in 1994. This was the one album without lead singer Vince Neil. It was their best album since Shout at the Devil, but it didn't sell...why? People couldn't get past the fact Motley Crue didn't sound like Motley Crue. The band admitted that maybe they should have released it as a different band. Trivium might have wanted to do the same thing. The Crusade is a good album, but it doesn't feel like a Trivium album.

Shogun is due out in September and the band has released one song so far. The screams are back...which is a good thing. They have another song on the Madden 09 soundtrack is below. I think this album will be much better than The Crusade and only time will tell.

Monday, August 04, 2008

The Sun Always Shines on T.V.: Spin City

Ok I know this isn't BSG or The Soup, but I have been catching re-runs of Spin City all summer long and have gotta say what a great show it was. It starred Michael J. Fox and a cast of others as city workers (mayor, deputy mayor, etc.). The first few episodes were kind of rough to watch, but they hit there stride mid-season and never looked back. The writers did a good job of creating and expanding on the characters. Carter (gay black man) and Stuart (male chauvinist) moving in together after their bar went under. Or Mike's relationship with Nikki. The first four seasons are great and worthy of any "greatest sitcom" talk ever.

So what happened? Well Fox was diagnosed with Parkinson's disease and had to leave the show. Here's where it gets bumpy. First off, his last show he talks about meeting a Senator from Ohio, Alex Keaton (who he played in Family Ties) cool nod there. So he leaves enter, Charlie Sheen. Well it wasn't just Fox, but half the cast also left. All the side characters that helped make the show great were gone. So did the show suffer? Actually no. It worked just as well. It reminds me of when Don Knotts left Andy Griffith, Andy went on with a 6th season and also switched to color. This is similar, not only do we have a new character, Sheen, but they dumped half the cast. It gave the show a brand new feel to it.

The show lasted 6 seasons, 4 with Fox in the lead. It is a classic show. Read about it HERE.

Sunday, July 27, 2008

wedding day

So yesterday a good friend of mine finally got married...he's 49. My wife and I have known him since he was our teacher in high school, 14 years ago. Since then, he and I coached together and I even began my teaching career in his room.

I remember him talking about his first date with her last year at lunch with "the guys". As I look back I can see that he was optimistic, but not too much. With good reason I guess, you go that long without being married you tend to think it might never happen.

I am proud of him for finding someone. My wife and I kept commenting on how happy he looked. I wish them the best of luck.

Saturday, July 26, 2008

More...More: 2008 albums

Ok here we go again. I just finished talking about Black Comedy and how they have a great industrial sound and awesome album, but a horrible name and then comes along Double Dragon. Yes Double Dragon. A popular video game series is now the name of a band...a pretty good band. They have an album coming out called Devastator which could be my metalcore pick over 36 Crazyfists... who knows though.

This year has been a crazy one for albums. If I was to guess for a top 10 now...
1. Metallica - Death Magnetic (it's Metallica)
2. Testament - The Foundation of Damnation
3. Eluveitie - Slania
4. Into Eternity - Incurable Tragedy
5. All That Remains - Overcome
6. The Human Abstract -
7. Protest the Hero - Fortress
8. 36 Crazy Fists - The Tide and Its Taker
9. Mercenary - Architectures of Lies
10.Biomechanical - Cannibalized

That is a solid list, but I left off
Soulfly
In Flames
Machinery
Black Comedy
Raunchy
Double Dragon
My Minds Weapon
Iced Earth
Trivium

Maybe All That Remains, Mercenary, and 36 Crazyfists come off...replaced by Trivium, My Minds Weapon, Double Dragon, and Raunchy? ARGHHH this is gonna be tough!

Friday, July 25, 2008

who knew?

this is a double post from my Myspace blog.

I had a myspace? I thought I closed it about 3 years ago. I created ne to see what my students were saying about me and thought I closed it. It wasn't til an old friend, Adam, requested to add me as his friend that I realized I didn't close it.

This time, I am using it to find music. I am tired of having to log in as my wife to download a song. If you are expecting for me to leave comments on your page...probably not gonna happen (I'm so popular I would be leaving comments all day )


That pretty much sums it up. My Myspace page is HERE

Monday, July 21, 2008

Are you kidding me?

This turning out to be a hell of a year for music. I just finish a review of All That Remain's last album, The Fall of Ideals, and this week they posted two new songs on their Myspace. Their last album was a masterpiece, which I said here, so it will be hard to top it. The new stuff sounds good. Relinquish sounds like it could have come off Ideals. Before the Damned is a little heavier than other ATR material. They have never released two albums that sounded the same so this isn't a shock to me.

On top of this news comes out today of Deadlock releasing an album in November. Wolves made my top 10 last year and I have some high expectations for this one too. Stay tuned for music.

I was all ready to put Raunchy's latest as my "industrial metal" album...then I heard Black Comedy. Holy crap..take Susperia with good Mnemic and you have Black Comedy. Horrible name, but the music is classic heavy industrial metal. Listen HERE.

Tough top 10 this year...ought to be an exciting finish.

Friday, July 18, 2008

And so it begins...*UPDATED*

the rest of 2008's great year of music that is. With albums from Metallica, All That Remains, Into Eternity, and Trivium sure to make waves in my top 10 list, other bands are releasing albums that are looking to be just as solid. Bands like Soulfly and The Human Abstract are two bands that I am also looking forward to hearing.

Soulfly's last album, Dark Ages, was a classic combination of thrash metal and tribal metal. Songs like Babylon and I and I are simply classics. Max Cavalera reunited with his brother earlier in the year to release Cavalera Conspiracy, which had it's moments, but probably won't make my top 10. They released their first single from the album, Unleash, and it seems to be in the same vein as Dark Ages so who knows...what the video for yourself and decide.

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The Human Abstract are a band that is similar in style to that of Protest the Hero. That sort of chaotic metal with death growls and clean vocals...great stuff. They released a couple of songs on their Myspace which have me thinking that this album could be better than Protest the Hero's Fortress. You can listen to the new songs HERE.

Not but certainly not least is Into Eternity, which is a band that I love a lot. They have a song from their new album on their myspace as well. My one complaint about The Scattering of Ashes was the more straight forward music, not a lot of time/tempo changes. With the song they have released, that seems to have disappeared. Now this is also a concept album, so who knows what to expect. I do notice a lack of a solo in the song, but I doubt rhis will be a St. Anger type album. Anyway take a listen HERE.

Oh yeah Metallica have named their album, Death Magnetic, interesting name...I saw an "in the studio video" and the solo I heard seriously could have been off of And Justice For All...I know that may come across as a little "fanboy-ish", but I am really excited about this one.

*UPDATE 7-18-08* so the day after I post this Metallica release the artwork for the new album. Here it is
I have heard that alot of the white around the magnetic irons will be removed. It's not the best cover I have seen, especially when you compare it to classic like Master of Puppets, AJFA, and Ride the Lightning. But as most have noted, the old logo is back. Here are some samples from the new album too.
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Tirades of Truth: All That Remains - The Fall of Ideals

Ok one of the main purposes of this blog was to give my reviews of albums. I did a few early on, but obviously got away from it. So now I am starting up again with the tag "Tirades of Truth" for all of my album reviews.

I have talked about what a stellar year it has been for metal albums and how difficult it is going to be to make a top 10 list. On top of that there are still at least 5 albums that could easily be in the top 10; Metallica, Into Eternity, All That Remains, Trivium, Soulfly, and The Human Abstract. So I will take a look back at those bands last album to see what we might get this time.

So finally onto the review. All That Remains was a band I discovered after getting into Shadows Fall and Killswitch Engage. When I found out the lead singer, Phil Labonte, was the former lead singer of Shadows Fall I thought can't be bad. So I tracked down their debut Behind Silence and Solitude. I was immediately impressed. This is what metalcore should sound like. You had the hardcore vocals and sing-a-longs with some killer guitar work. This isn't a total shred-fest, but some heart and soul went into the songs. So I was really looking forward to the follow-up, This Darkened Heart. I was so disappointed by this album. It was like KsE with simple guitar solos. Everything that made their debut special was gone. Generic scream verses with clean choruses...so mediocre.

So that brings us to The Fall of Ideals. The albums kicks off with the best song on the album, This Calling. Not only is it the best song on the album, but the intro just grabs you by the throat and shakes the hell out of you. The riff is reminiscent of the classic "galloping" riff of old Iced Earth. The drumming is relentless and never lets up. I notice that the verses are sung with the scream/growls and the choruses are clean, but it works so much better than TDH. With the next few songs you start to notice that the verses are also sung with clean vocals adding a big sense of variety to the album.
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Phil's clean singing has improved a ton, which is what really makes this album go. Right when you think you have the album figured out, along comes The Weak Willed. No clean singing here, in fact the vocals would fit better in a brutal death metal band...but it works. It's a great change of pace. Especially the end of the song with the acoustic guitar work.
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Guitar work is stellar. On their debut the solos had that something. On TDH, they seemed forced. With TFoI, they return to those solos that seem to just flow perfectly with the music. It Dwells on Me, Six, and Whispers are perfect examples of the guitar work. It's not rushed, it's not done to show how well they can play the scales.
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There isn't one bad song on this album. From start to finish it works. The Weak Willed might be the hardest song for most, but as I said it breaks the album up just enough to keep it flowing.

Hopefully they will try to keep the magic going on their new one, Overcome, but who knows. Besides this album isn't going anywhere.

Monday, July 14, 2008

Cinemassacre: Top 10 Riddler riddles

OK I have been waiting to post some of his videos, but trying to find some that don't contain too much cussing takes awhile. Anyways, the AVGN (James Rolfe) is a classic character. He is a bit younger than me, but we have pretty similar tastes in alot of things. I found him by watching his Nintendo reviews on Gametrailers. com, but he is much more than that. His "regular" movie reviews and top 10 lists are great.

I am a huge fan of Batman and like James I grew up watching re-runs of the 60's version. Here is his top 10 list of the Riddler's top riddles.

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He is also doing a 3 part series of Batman on film. It's pretty good. I will post that later. enjoy

Summer School

I can't believe I only have 2 weeks left of summer school & I haven't posted anything on it. In a nutshell;
- good class (couple loud kids)
- Alg. B is easier in the summer than Alg. 2
- hardest test of summer is today
- forgot what it was like teaching next to another teacher

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Right Now: Updates to site

So I am trying to catch up with posts and here are the latest changes
- updated my banner (larger with more bands)
- added a "Top Artists of the Week" from Last.fm
- put up some iMixes of my top metal albums going back to 2004
- hoping to add some more widgets later this month...stay tuned.

What can brown do for you? Start doin' your freakin' jobs!

Ok so it has been awhile since I posted on my "adventures" at UPS. When I left off, I was headed back to the sort aisle to work with a new group of sups who would eventually become some of my closest friends at UPS and outside of work. I now had almost a year of experience under my belt, including some load side experience which separated me from everyone in the unload/sort. Being that I had the second most experience, after Rob S., I realized that I had to step up and be the lead supervisor for the back. Adrian was my sort partner and P.J. was my unload partner. It was some of the most enjoyable times at UPS. Not to mention future sups/friends were working for us as sorters (Trevor & Andrew).

So anyway, my new full time supervisor, Tom, was a pretty good sup. He was always trying to keep the building running smooth even if it cost us in the back. He also wanted to end missorts. So he came up with this idea of wearing hand stamps. Basically, the sorters wore these letters on their hands, then when they picked up the package it would stamp the box. If it was a missort, we could track who sorted it. Nice...in theory.

We also had a new building manager, Dave, from Palm Springs. Dave had a red-ish tint to him, from all the sun I think. Anyways, the funny thing about Dave was that he would always talk about Palm Springs and compare it to Ontario. Now Palm Springs processed about 3-5 trailers a night versus our 15-20...yeah we bought into what he was telling us .

So part of the problem with the stamps was that when it got cold in the building, they froze. Seriously, you could put the ink on the stamps and instead of soaking into the stamp the ink would float on top and look like something from Terminator 2. The other problem was that it slowed down our sorters. Because they started to ask us to have the sorters verify that the stamp was on the box, instead of just grabbing.

So one morning, we were letting the stamps soak up the ink and we were just flowing. About 40 minutes til break we were getting calls asking about missorts and stamps. Now Tom was out of the building that day, and we were left on our own. So there wasn't much time before break and I told Adrian, former sorter turned sup, we would put them on after break.

We get a call from Dave to meet us at the time clock where the stamps were. We showed up and he looked pissed and broken. He asked us why they weren't wearing the stamps. I just said we were letting them soak and didn't go back to put them on. No excuses, we just didn't do it. I don't think he expected that response because he just got redder than usual and looked like he was going to burst. He looked at us and just went off.

"That's the problem with this building. We put things in place to fix them and you just decide not to do them. You all think you know what's right and how to fix things, but if you did then we wouldn't be so bad. Now after break you are going to put these stamps on and start doin' your freakin' jobs!"

It was a thing of beauty. He left Adrian and I looked at each other and laughed a little. That was Dave's moment for us. That quote was used over and over by Adrian and I for the next 4 years. Dave was only in the building for about 3 maybe 4 months. He couldn't adjust from such a small operation to one the size of ours.

Enter: Lou. This is where we become classic UPS.
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Now playing: All That Remains - This Calling
via FoxyTunes

Friday, July 11, 2008

Venting the Anger: New Fear My Thoughts

Remember a couple weeks ago when I talked about changing vocalists? I mentioned that fear My Thoughts had changed vocalists and the samples were pretty weak. Vulcanus was a killer album, Isolation...sucks...hard. They posted the album on their Myspace. Gone are anything At the Gates, melodic death metal references and in it's place is generic radio metal. Listen at your own risk.

The Sun Always Shines on T.V.: BSG last season

trying to get caught up on posts...so let me start off with my favorite show on t.v. right now, Battlestar Galactica. So they are pulling the "let's show half the season then wait 9 months before we finish it" crap again. After season 3 we were left with the revelation of 4 of the final five cylons. We had to wait over a year before the new season...thanks in part to the writer's strike. So now we leave the mid season with the fleet finally finding Earth...except it is totally destroyed.

There are so many solid storylines going on right now. Who is the final cylon, did Starbuck die, is Tory going to screw over the fleet, when is the President going to die, and what's up with the "Last Supper" Picture?

This photo is supposed to tell secrets of the final season. Ok that's cool. But the picture is "changing" The President (far left) used to have a candle in front of her...it's now gone. And Six (red dress) was positioned more left and now is moving to the center...WTF?!?! And the missing seat is supposed to be the final cylon. So everyone talks about how the last cylon can't be in the picture. It is driving me crazy and I can't wait until next January to find out the ending.



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Now playing: Metallica - Disposable Heroes
via FoxyTunes

not again

I am getting tired of posting about students dying, but it happened again. We had a senior who I knew and my wife actually knew when she worked at the district day care when he was in elementary school. You can read about it HERE.

My heart aches for the family. About a month ago everyone was happy because of graduation...now this.

Sunday, June 29, 2008

What can brown do for you? Brown Cafe

so I know I have been lacking on the UPS stories and I know where I am right now. I am almost a year into my "career" and am heading back to the sort aisle to meet "the new guys". This is where it gets fun.

In the meantime I found a site Brown Cafe and talk about memories. Some of the talk is on topic, so if you haven't worked there then you won't understand, but for me it's like coming home.

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Now playing: Testament - More Than Meets The Eye
via FoxyTunes

Saturday, June 28, 2008

Albums of the Year: Mid-year

This list is ever changing it seems like. There are so many solid albums coming out this year that I might have to do a top 20. Great year for metal, so let's get started...

1. Testament: Formation of Damnation - This should be the top album of the year, unless Metallica's album, Death Magnetic, is a true return to form. I am a sucker for Bay Area Thrash and this album brings it back in all it's glory. Chuck Billy hasn't lost his harsher vocals either. I was a little worried that with the original line-up reuniting that we would see some more catchy stuff, but we got some classic Testament. It isn't as "hard" as The Gathering. The album feels like a natural progression from Low (my favorite Testament album).
Testament's Myspace

2. Mercenary: Architect of Lies - Ahh Mercenary, started out as a pure death metal band, then added a "clean" vocalist and went big. 11 Dreams was a classic, but after that album the "death" vocalist left the band. It showed on their follow-up, Hours That Remain. It was a solid album, but they needed a death vocalist. Well they got one again and it's nice to see classic Mercenary. Not as solid as 11 Dreams, but a big improvement over Hours That Remain.
Mercenary's Myspace

3. Biomechanical: Cannibalized - Biomechanical is a crazy band. If I had to describe them I would say they are part Halford, part Strapping Young Lad, and part symphony. Yeah it's that crazy. I was blown away by Empires of the World, but this is harder, heavier, and faster. It also completes the trilogy of the albums, but honestly I can't figure out the story. The vocals go from the high Halford-esque to some pretty solid harsh vocals. Musically, it's all over the place.
Biomechanical's Myspace

4. Protest the Hero: Fortress - I thought this would be my album of the year. I was waiting on this one ever since I heard their debut, Kezia. It sounds pretty much like Kezia part 2, which is a good thing. Nothing seems forced and the album flows very well.
Protest the Hero's Myspace

5. Eluveitie: Slania - It seems like every year an album comes along and is just so different it makes my top 10. Last year it was Deadlock and before that it was Borknagar. Now it is Eluveitie's turn. Their music is described as folk metal, and does it eveer come across that way. Imagine a death metal band with a violin and a hurdy gurdy! yeah that's not a typo. The music is so grand it's not even funny. Throw in some female vocals and you have yourself one hell of an album.
Eluveitie's Myspace

6. Mygrain: Signs of Existence - Mygrain's sophmore follow-up is so much better than their debut. This is pure Swedish Death Metal. Great riffs, stellar keyboards, fantastic vocals, and of course catchy choruses. A surprise album if there ever was one.
Mygrain's Myspace

7. Textures: Silhouettes - This is an album that is growing on me like you wouldn't believe. For me they are coming across as a heavier version of Into Eternity. Not as progressive as Circles, but it's not straight death metal either. Great combination and they somehow tweaked their formula just enough to catch me.
Textures' Myspace

8. Warrel Dane: Praises to the Warmachine - Ok for those of you who are into metal, you know who Warrel Dane is..lead singer of Nevermore. Now, Nevermore is one of my favorite bands. I hate it when bands do side projects because I am worried about them breaking up because of it. This year Dane is doing one as is their guitarist, Jeff Loomis. So I was worried, but then I heard it wasn't going to be anything like Nevermore...ok I feel better. But wait, this album is Nevermore light. Seriously, if you are a fan of The Heart Collector or The River Dragon pick this up. I don't know why some of these songs never made it to an album, but they are solid Nevermore style songs. So where does this leave Nevermore? I guess we will have to wait and see.
Warrel Dane's Myspace

9. 36 Crazyfists: The Tide and Its Takers - Now somewhere in the last few years I started to appreciate the metalcore genre. I couldn't stand it at first, but some bands can do it and make it sound great. 36 Crazyfists is one of those bands. Their latest is classic metalcore. The music is sharp and the breakdowns are memorable. The first track The All Night Lights is killer and sets the tempo for the rest of the album. Vocals go from Tompa screams to clean singing, not the emo style either, just clean vocals. Huge surprise for me.
36 Crazyfists' Myspace

10. Machinery: The Passing - Who is Machinery? An upstart band that plays some classic thrash inspired metal. Now, Helloween's The Dark Ride is one of my favorite albums of all time and at times that's what this reminds me of... only darker and heavier. The vocalist is reminiscent of Andi Deris at times, but not a complete copy. Musically, like I said classic thrash with some tight solos. Of all the albums I picked up this year, this one is the most surprising.
Machinery's Myspace

on the bubble:
Pyramaze: Immortal - return of Matt Barlow on lead vocals. Killer album. I expect this or Iced Earth's new one in the top 10.

Eminence: The God of all Mistakes - tribal metal combined with thrash...better than Sepultura, but not as solid as Soulfly's last album. Most years this would be in the top 10 right now.

Arsis: We Are the Nightmare - an improvement over United in Regret, but still something is missing.

In Flames: A Sense of Purpose - I am a huge In Flames fan, but this is just missing some memorable songs right now. When I heard Take This Life, lead single off of their last album, I was hooked. Nothing like that here.

Bullet for My Valentine: Scream, Aim, Fire - ok this might make it in the top 10. I couldn't stand it when I heard it the first time, but it is growing on me like nobody's business. Plus a cover of No Easy Way Out...come on.

The Arcane Order: In the Wake of Collisions - classic melodic death metal with some symphonic undertones...definitely original.

Perzonal War: Bloodlines - classic thrash.

Raunchy: Wasteland Discotheque - This is what Mnemic's Passenger should have sounded like. Classic industrial metal with those catchy choruses. This should easily make the top 10. It comes out on Tuesday, but is streaming on their myspace, HERE.

So there you have a good 15 albums, and there is still 6 months to go. And what's to come. Ok second part of the Iced Earth double album with Matt Barlow back on lead vocals. Into Eternity's latest album and 1st concept album. All That Remain's new one. And their last album was a classic... not one filler song on that thing. Trivium, who are said to be going back to a style more similar to Ascendancy which would be a great thing. Oh yeah and this little band called Metallica. We might as well give #1 to Metallica now. I am a sucker for new Metallica. So you can see that there are at least 4 albums that will probably end up in the top 10. Exciitng year.


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Now playing: Eminence - Day 7
via FoxyTunes

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Venting the Anger: Changing Vocalists

Man this is starting to piss me off a bit. I don't understand why a band changes their lead vocalists. NOw I understand there is the whole "lead singer syndrome", but sometimes you have to scratch your head and say why. Over the past few months or years some of my favorite bands have dumped their lead singer, apparently for no other reason than to sell more records. It all started with Mnemic. Their album, The Audio Injected Soul, was a masterpiece in the industrial metal genre. So what do they do? Dump the vocalist and release a crap of an album with Passenger. I was so disappointed with the album, it made my top disappointments of 2007. Another example would have to be The Autumn Offering. Once again a great album, Embrace the Gutter, a true masterpiece of modern thrash and metalcore. Then they ditch the vocalist and release the embarassing Fear Will Cast No Shadow.

Well I thought maybe that this trend would stop, but I found out last week that Fear My Thoughts have dumped their vocalist in favor of a crappy vocalist. Their last album Vulcanus was killer, a killer slice of melodic death metal. And from the samples I have heard from their new one...it's gonna suck.

Why can't bands just keep going ahead with who they have. I understand that sometimes there is personality conflicts, but this whole idea of switching to sell more records is stupid. Especially when the new guy can't re-create what once was.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Right Now

Holy crap! Seriously I can't find any time to get on this thing and update it. Well what has happened since the last update.
- Seniors are gone, graduated
- Summer school has started, the class isn't that bad. 1st semester is a lot easier than 2nd though
- My wife is changing schools, which is a good thing considering how bad it was this year
- kids are doing great, I am amazed at how much sign language my wife has taught our daughter...so cute to watch her "talk"
- BSG is off the air until 2009! They found Earth, but the final cylon isn't in the fleet. Now I just have to wait...again.

Next update should be a full one. I need to hit the albums of the year so far and get back to UPS stories.

Tuesday, June 03, 2008

Right Now

Wow it seems like it has been forever since I have been able to get on here. So here's the latest
- Everyone is sick, daughter had another seizure, but is doing fine.
- Sleep is short and far between
- Seniors are gone, 3 days to go
- One week off before summer school
- No spotlight since, KsE due to me being sick and being at home with family
- BSG still a great show
- Spider-Man getting a little sloppy at the end of season one
- next up will hopefully be my mid year album picks