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A savage night at the opera
Another savage night at the club
Let's face it, 
25th-May-2012 04:12 pm - Things I love about Xenoblade: Part 1
Despite owning this game for a month and a half or something, I didn't get the chance to start playing until last week (during my break between semesters). I haven't played at all since (when I put in about 20 hours) but I am eagerly anticipating jumping back in this weekend.

This game has been hailed as one of if not the best JRPGs of this (console) generation and something of a revival of the genre. While I feel like this opinion is mostly supported by individuals who don't actually play JRPGs, my takeaway so far is that Xenoblade is an absolutely amazing game and needs to be played by everyone for reasons that go far beyond showing Nintendo of America that the US still has a market for this (Xenoblade was part of the almost tragic Operation Rainfall movement)

I'm not going to give the game a review, but I am going to make a short writeup of the things that make this game, in my opinion, special.

If there are any spoilers here they are really minorCollapse )
Note that this is an extremely twisty movie, and experiencing these twists in context is significant to the experience of the movie. Not that I think the movie isn't enjoyable if you know what happens; I think I liked it even more on the second viewing. But there is definitely something to be said for puzzling through it on your own.

So if you have any interest in seeing this movie, and you really should, even if horror isn't normally your thing (the horror in this movie isn't going to stick with you, and is mostly presented in a very...THIS IS A MOVIE fashion) approach this post cautiously.

spoilers spoilers spoilers spoilersCollapse )
23rd-Feb-2012 06:17 pm(no subject)
Pinkie why
I'm also posting the old ones, because I went back and read them and they are waaaaaay better.

The album and the band are both called BOYCollapse )

23rd-Feb-2012 05:56 pm(no subject)
Last time I gave La Dispute the spotlight, so now it's EMA's turn.

I'm revisiting a story format that I did once, because I really enjoy it and I feel that the other instance is some of if not the finest writing I've ever done, where I write a series of very short narratives inspired by the songs on a particular album. In this case, Past Life Martyred Saints.

This is very much a first draft, though, and I'm still disappointed in most of them. Except for Coda which is perfect.

I saw Joseph carrying the gun, I saw Mary carrying the gun, I used to carry the gun...Collapse )

20th-Feb-2012 08:36 pm - "I wrote a poem..."
I never actually got around to posting my write-up for my year-end album list. I suppose I still could, but now that we’re on the eve of March it would feel a bit silly.

In 2010 I refused to declare a single favorite album, but I did select a top five (looking back now it would be revised to six). For 2011 (I almost typed “this year”) that number was three; Destroyer’s Kaputt, EMA’s Past Life Martyred Saints, and La Dispute’s Wildlife.

Since I didn’t get to gush over these in that year end post—well I did, but no one saw it, I’m just going to do so here. But I’m not going to gush over all of them. Rather, I’m going to gush over the one that is never actually going to get the recognition it deserves.

Dan Bejar (Destroyer, among other things) is and has been a well respected musician in the indie community for something like fifteen years now. That he could put out a masterful album surprised no one, and furthermore it would have no trouble getting attention, mass and critical. EMA doesn’t have the same pedigree, but Erika Anderson’s old project Gowns was developing a following and the sound and attitude of EMA build directly from that, so Past Life enjoyed a sort of breakout success.

La Dispute, on the other hand...Collapse )
I recently picked up a physical copy of the only good my favorite metal album of the year, Path of Totality by Tombs. I did an audio review here, for the curious.

The album has an insert in the back of the cover from the record label. It's mostly a list of bands with album titles and covers, but it also does a nice job of boiling down the issues I have with metal as a genre into a digestible, easily referenced format.

Let's start with the band names. We have such charming gems as Necrophagist, Suffocation, Pig Destroyer, Haemorrhage, Exhumed, Rotten Sound, Death, Neurosis, Repulsion, Kingdom of Sorrow, and Abysmal Dawn. And I can only imagine the depth of insight that must surely spew from the brain of the minds behind Dying Fetus and Cephalic Carnage. Then there's my personal favorite, Devourment.

The album titles practically write themselves at this point, but for the sake of completion I'm going to list a few of them too: Intestinal Incubation, Entrails of You, Your Funeral My Feast, The Engine of Death, Beaten into Submission, Full of Hell, Descend into Depravity, Behind the Blackest Tears, Taste the Sin, Leveling the Plane of Existence, Existence is Futile, and the Fragile Art of Existence. No, those last three are not the products of the same band.

And I can't really paste a bunch of covers here (well I could, but it would be annoying) but to paint a general picture: Imagine a black box, 500 x 500 pixels. In the middle of this box, put white text. Now distort the text beyond legibility by stretching it height-wise and compressing it lengthwise. If you're not feeling too creatively drained at this point, consider replacing the black box with a hardcore picture like a crow eating eyeballs or corpses piled on each other, or a corpse eating eyeballs from a pile of corpses piled on each other.

If you're still invested at this point, you might suspect that my issue with metal is that it's comically "dark" to the point of self parody.


This is only part of my issue. The broader problem is that it takes itself way too seriously for otherwise being comically "dark" to the point of self parody. Everything about the genre is played straight, and it doesn't deal in small, day to day issues that lesser genres make into the subjects of their songs, no. Metal is built on the monumental backs of such topics as existentialism, religion, mythology, war, violence, and depravity. The juxtaposition between the seriousness it attempts and the ridiculousness of its image is really just too much for me to handle. You're going to call yourself Dying Fetus and then you're going to wear a black robe and hood onstage while growling at 3 words a minute and riffing a twelve-minute guitar solo followed by a description of Ragnarok--and you expect me to appreciate this in any kind of unironic way?

Also I happen to have it on good authority that 95% of "metalheads" spend more time downvoting Justin Bieber music on YouTube than they do listening to actual metal. Stay classy.

(there might be a "why I can't take hip hop seriously" in the near future)
17th-Aug-2011 12:43 pm(no subject)
Last winter I made a list of my top 6 episodes of Regular Show season 1. Now that season 2 has ended, I figure it’s time to do it again. Note that a top 6 for season 1 wasn’t that difficult because there are only twelve episodes.

Season 2 on the other hand has 28. So I’ve had to consider this a bit more. But I think I’ve worked everything out as best as I’m able.

--also, I ranked Ello Gov’nor really high on my last list, but come to find out it was actually the first episode of Season 2. But we’ll pretend that’s not the case >>;

My only request for season 3? BRING BACK DONCollapse )
Headless Mami
Large image behind cut. HUGE! I'm talkin' really, really big. MAAAASSSSSSIVECollapse )

Just so you know, cut-text is a game reference. It's called Star Fox: Command. You probably haven't heard of it.
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