The Cringe List (playlist)

Happy Wednesday!

I was talking with a friend the other day and she told me “Why is it all the music you listen to either morbid, kinda angry, or just…strange? Do you ever listen to anything, I don’t know, fun?” Of course, I think all my music is fun which is why I like it so much.

However her tastes, like most peoples’ (at least compared to mine), are much closer to main-stream and this did get me thinking that maybe my music tastes make me seem snobby.

Image result for i don't listen to pop music

It’s not that I dislike the Biebs…

I will admit to snobbery in my consumption of media in general but I would be lying if I said I didn’t have a few songs that I hate that I love that I’m fairly sure everyone knows.   In an effort to forward my (fairly) radical honesty agenda, I’ve decided to share with you a playlist of songs that I rarely admit to really loving.

I never really got into “break up” songs because like I always felt like that would kind of ruin the song for me because of the association however when I was working in a catering kitchen they’d play this one song on the radio.  A lot.

The kitchen was really loud with over 70 employees all chopping vegetables and clanging pots and chef’s yelling across the yawning expanse of the biggest kitchen I have ever worked in.  This amalgamation of noises plus my generally failing hearing (I listen to music too loud, I go to shows and hug the giant bass speakers, I am aging gracefully but my ears are compensating) I could ever only catch one lyric which captured the spirit of my wonder-lust, which is frequently fueled by a certain sense of discomfort.

“This guy decides to quit his job and heads to New York City
This cowboy’s running from himself”

“Riptide”, Vance Joy

 

In that same chaotic kitchen I heard another song that I liked but similarly could only catch one line of.

“we don’t talk about it”

“Stolen Dance”, Milky chance

That lyric paired with the upbeat positive melody gave me the most wonderful mental image of a guy in real emotional turmoil but dancing along with a big smile on his face, not wanting to talk about it.

I liked the guy’s strange rough voice and the acoustic guitar so much that when I finally figured out what song I was hearing, I found that he has one other song I liked too.

It was this music video that kept me coming back.  I like the colours.  And his hair.  Like that mane is glorious.

Years before finding all these songs I lived in this literally haunted house in South City St Louis off Compton St(1) with four other guys.  We used to have this game where we would take turns putting things on youtube, from songs to mechanical videos, and when you wanted to have the wireless keyboard passed to you, you’d ask “Can I drive for a moment?”

The two brothers who I got on best with fucking LOATHED this song so naturally I couldn’t admit to liking it but it wormed it’s way into my heart.  It hit’s too many buttons not to.  The horns, San Francisco, being in love with the concept of love, it melted my cold black heart (that’s been torn apart).

There was a time when I was working in a grocery store deli(2) and they had this radio that had a stagnant playlist: the same 15 songs for the 18 hours of operation 7 days a week.  It was brutal.  However in the back of house, we had our own radio which was usually set to something like  Z107.7, the St Louis pop station, and this one song would come one and it had this like pop ska sound to it which that I just could not get enough of.

The song reminds me of the game Shadow of the Colossus.

Image result for shadow of the colossus

Shadow is easily one of my favourite games of all time.  Well…maybe it ties with the first two Katamari Damacy games.

Year’s later I was working in Jimmy John’s, an American sandwich shop, and Jimmy Radio(3) would consistently surprise me with music good music from all over the spectrum plus some really obscure songs that I have never heard before or since outside of that place.  This is one of those songs:

I know it’s one of those hipster chorus songs but it has this strange sound that I can’t identify but I really like.  That “ewooo ewoo” synth sound like an electric kazoo or something.

I’ll leave you with one last song.  This song, like the rest in this list, takes me back to a time when things were different. A time when I could drink reasonably (sometimes), a time when the world still felt small enough for me to conquer but big enough that if given free roam I would never get bored, a time before all my friends went to the angry winds.  It was a time when I was deep in a bro-mance with my best friend of 15 years and we were had “our songs”, something I’ve never shared with a lover for the same reason why I avoid break up songs, and this was one of those songs.  I listen to this song when I miss that guy, that time, that time-feel.

I have more than enough of these cringe songs to make another Cringe List but I’ve spent way too much time in the past today.

Footnotes:

  1. I still joke sometimes “I ain’t scared. I’m straight outta Compton.” Before I left St Louis for England, I wanted to get a jumper that read “Straight Outta St Louis” because I read this story once that a St Louis native in Oregon actually fended off a would-be mugger because he said “Man, I ain’t scared of you.  I’m from St Louis.”  Being effective due to our city’s reputation for being one of the most dangerous cities in America and #15 Most Dangerous City in the World.
  2. I ate so many cheese scraps, they were literally scraps that we could not sell so I don’t feel bad, that when I left I was placed on the “Do not rehire” list but I don’t want to meet the monster who can throw away collective kilos of Havariti and Extra Sharp Cheddar and Provel among others.  I love cheese, probably more than some people in my life, which is also one reason why I suspect I have a hard time meeting a partner.
  3. I’m serious, the official name for the corporate approved radio station was called “Jimmy Radio”.

 

The Punk Tin Sandwich (playlist)

Happy Wednesday!

I recently bought a harmonica because I used to play many instruments when I was young, all strings (guitar, violin, cello, piano), however since I grew up into a

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I haven’t named em yet, but I was thinking “Silver” like the Lone Ranger’s horse.

professional hobo I never had room or money to travel/move frequently with a big expensive instrument.  I had considered the harmonica for years but never pulled the trigger on it despite being small and inexpensive until now.

 

 

 

It wasn’t until it arrived in the mail until I realised: I only really listen to one song with harmonica in it.

This might me be my favourite song by my favourite band.  It’s such a hard call, they have so many good songs (which is one reason why I can’t stop writing about them).

Don’t get me wrong, I like Bob Dylan and Blues traveler but they’re not in my usual roster of music and so I had no imagination for what I wanted to really play.  I had faith though because if the The Creepshow can kill it, then there had to be other punk/rockabilly/ska bands to love on the Tin Sandwich.

The first band I found in my search was Johnny Hobo and the Freight Trains and what a treat their album “Love Songs for the Apocalypse” turned out to be.  To fully appreciate theses guys, think of them less as punk purists and more like “hobo punk blues”.

New Mexico song opens up with a nice harmonica which plays as a part of the hook.

“We aren’t revolutionaries,
But we are the revolution.
And sometimes I think that the whole movement is just me and you
And then maybe we’d all be better off, if that were true

Cuz then at least we’d know where we stand
And we could tell our comrades apart from the man
But if the world isn’t that simple
Maybe this town is at least
And if I’m not marching with them for war
I’m sure not marching with you for peace”

“Well if I found god anywhere, it would be by the tracks
Face down in a box car, forty in both hands
And when I find god there, we’ll just sit and roll some top
Cause he’ll be just as confused as anyone else on this rock”

The next one I found was by an more traditional punk band, Pinhead Gunpowder (don’t you just love these names? It’s like a part of the appeal for me), with their song “Kathleen”

The harmonica kicks in around 20s.

The last song today comes from an old-school punk band from Germany called Die Toten Hosen (which hilariously translates to “The Dead Pants”, see aren’t the names fun?) with their song Grossalarm.

The harmonica comes in at the climax around 2m40s.

If you have any more harmonica songs that are not blues (I like the blues but boy do I have to be in a mood for them), feel free to leave a comment below.

Punk Rock Girls (playlist)

Happy Wednesday!

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That hair tho. 

I like the punk rock look.  Guy, girl, whatever. A well placed piercing, a few tattoos, and a healthy dislike for the establishment will get my attention and is the theme for the songs I have for you today.

 

 

 

 

 

 

I read the drummer, Matt “Pomade” Gee, from my favourite psychobilly band, The Creepshow, is in a punk band called “Rehab for Quitters“.  I already like the drummer in the The Creepshow and the name of the band was funny enough I needed to look it up and Punk Rock Girl was the first song I listened to which inspired today’s post.

 

Streetlight Manifesto is one of the first ska bands I listened to. My first ska band was a live The Toasters show we got free tickets for from the local St Louis station 88.1 KDHX(1) who pretty frequently gives away free tickets to local shows.  This is a cover, the original is by The Dead Milkmen on the album Beelzebubba but I like this version better because the horns.  This is my favourite stanza

We went to the Phillie Pizza Company
And ordered some hot tea
The waitress said “Well no
We only have it iced”
So we jumped up on the table
And shouted “anarchy”
And someone played a Beach Boys song
On the jukebox
It was “California Dreamin'”
So we started screamin’
“On such a winter’s day”

 

Me and Dr. Frank have both decided that we love
Them more than toast

I don’t know if I like anybody more than toast. Wheat toast with butter and strawberry jam(2) has yet to let me down.

 

Footnotes:

  1. They have this excellent ska and punk show “Ska’s the limit” with JJ Loy on Saturday nights and Thursday they have a rockabilly show called “The Greaser’s Lunch Box” with Al Swacker and you can stream KDHX live from anywhere via their website and whether you’re a St Louis native or not I highly encourage you to do so because they have almost 80 different shows, each about two hours, spanning all genres of music, it’s commercial free, but the absolute best part are the personalities behind the microphones.  They’re all colourful and wonderful and funny and interesting and sometimes you really get attached to some of these guys.  There used to be this guy, Bob, who had a show Bob’s Scratchy Records.  Bob loved hid scratchy vynals and his stories.  “Bob’s Scratchy records is a hallucinatory, rabble-rousing radio program that weirds up the airwaves every Friday from 2pm4pm on St. Louis’ KDHX (88.1 FM) Bob Reuter takes you on an emotional roller coaster featuring the rawest blues, soul, gospel, hillbilly, rock & roll, and whatever else falls on the turntable.”   I had a lot of good times listening to his radio show before he died August 2013.  I remember final episode.  It was rough.  There’s not much left as far as archived episodes but this is my first time hearing Bob’s voice, here at his bandcamp page.  The world is a smaller place with out Bob.    
  2. Strawberry jam is my favourite.

RJD2 (music)

Happy Wednesday!

Have I got something funky for you.  RJD2 is an artist that I found on youtube years ago and the first song I heard by this guy, Ghostwriter from his album Deadringer, continually blows my mind.

The introduction of horns at 1m30s just makes me so excited every time.

I also like this version of Ghostwriter with Jurassic 5 called “Golden Ghostwriter”

Another song off the Deadwringer album, Smoke and Mirrors is very nice.

I find that I’m a fan of minimalist lyrics in these type of songs where the music is complex and strange.  I particularly like the first stanza

“Who knows what tomorrow will bring
Maybe sunshine or maybe the rain
But as for me, I’ll wait and see
And maybe it’ll bring my love to me, oh…”

Another thing that’s interesting about RJD2 is this guy has worked with, seemingly, everybody from Tycho to Aesop Rock to Massive Attack. So when I found out that RJD2 did the introduction theme for Mad Men, I shouldn’t have been surprised but I still was.

The first three minutes are the iconic Mad Men theme but then the last 2m29s almost sound like an entirely different song.

A Heart Felt Letter to Trebek (Playlist)

Happy Wednesday!

Dear Alex Trebek of Jeopardy!,

Screw you.

Sincerely,

Fin & Louie

 

Alex Trebek thinks that nerdcore hip hop is not fun and for loosers as he stated in this clip from his general knowledge game show of the last 32 years, Jeopardy! I don’t think it’s particularly cool but it has inspired some fun songs across the nerdcore genre.

 

Trebek Diss by Twill.Distilled

This first track rocks.  Twill.Distilled represents the women of nerdcore in her lyrics. Check out these lyrics:

Alex Trebek, you aint polite, I thought you were from canada
after that im just like, bro, whats the matter with ya
lets take a look at your show and your key demographic
biting the hand the feeds you, thats just simply tragic

Wanna talk about losers, lets focus on you
The rhetoric of nerds is overplayed you know it’s true
slinging out insults like loser on a show of intelligence
your diligence of dreadfulness like a benighted emulous

I don’t know whats more tragic, your career or your fitness
A foreshadow of kardashian, Lucinda Moyers is the witness
not one but two heart attacks I think the universe is callin
time for you to tap out while nerdcore keeps on ballin

Callin our home girl and all ofus losers
bruh are you serious, just take a look at her
maybe you’re just getting old, or you got glaucoma
but your presence on this nerd scene is nothing but an adenoma

 

Fuck Alex Trebek ft. Osiris Green

I love this deep bass rap by Wreck the System.

“these guys who created music, hip hop music, that were hardcore about their nerdom hence nerdcore…being computer…programmers hackers…video game addicts comic book readers, they could explore that what they love and put it in to music”

-Fuck Alex Trebek ft. Osiris Green, 1m12s

That quote just makes my day man.

Also big Thank You goes out to Lady J (Wreck the System) and Paleface for last week’s press release of their music video Link With a Kink and interview.

 

“Suck It Trebek” A Response RAP | TEAMHEADKICK – Mega Ran – MC LARS

The last one I have up is an excellent flow trio between TEAMHEADKICK and Mega Ran and MC Lars.

Let’s not forget Susan Cole for being the one to stand up for the genre.

 

BONUS LETTER:

Dear Susan Cole,

Thank you for being awesome.

Sincerely,

Fin & Louie

Offbeat, On-point

MC Lars Interview and Poe Playlist (music)

Happy Wednesday!

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Unfortunately I was unable to get a picture with MC Lars after the show however when I think back, this is about what I think it’d look like.

MC Lars was the fourth and final artist I saw at the Manchester show.  I really liked his set, I was vaguely familiar with his music before now but after the show I’ve found a new nerdcore great.

The First song I heard from MC Lars was a song about Edgar Allen Poe(1).

 

Then recently when I started listening to him rap, I noticed a trend:

 

 

Big thank you goes to MC Lars for the following interview:

OBOP: Who inspires you? Musically, artistically, writing, personally? (As many answers as you want, don’t worry about restricting yourself to one source)

MC Lars (MCL): My biggest influence is definitely “Weird Al” Yankovic! I love how he was able to, as Lin-Manuel Miranda said on Marc Maron’s podcast recently, strip music of its “genre clothes” and comment on everything. He’s definitely my biggest influence and I was so stoked that he thanked me in his last album.

OBOP: Did you always want to be a musician/songwriter or was there a “monkey touch monolith” moment?

(MCL): I always wanted to be a cartoonist, but when I did my first Shakespeare rap in 1998, I knew I was onto something!

OBOP: What do you consider your greatest artistic and/or professional and/or personal achievement? (Feel free to answer all three or one or a combination, whatever man)

(MCL): Definitely playing Carnegie Hall in 2012! We debuted “Flow Like Poe” and I felt like I’d finally made it.

OBOP: What superpower would you have if you could have one and why/what would you do with it? (Seriously anything, from the mundane, to the established, to something completely original)

(MCL): I’d have the power to heal people’s hearts. 🙂 I try to do that with music anyway!

OBOP: If you could be in possession of a pocket dimension that you could travel into and out of at will, that contained any established cannon (books, movies, comics, video games, Salvador Dali paintings, anything) what would it be and what would you want to most do in there?

(MCL): It would be amazing to go into the Bible and meet Jesus – I’d love to hear what he has to say about today’s political climate.

MC Lars is one of the most approachable people I’ve ever met, I mean that includes all celebrities and everyday people,  when he says

I’d have the power to heal people’s hearts. 🙂 I try to do that with music anyway!

-MC Lars

I can really buy it.  Funny thing is my friend and I had gotten to Manchester a few hours early and we thought the doors opened at 7.30 and so we walked in and there was like this hush of when people are present who aren’t immediately recognized and like 5 dudes standing around.  I thought we were early and didn’t think much of it until one of the roadies (I assume, maybe he was an employee of the club) asked me if we had tickets and I said yea and as he was informing us that we were 30 minutes before the door this big dude, who I didn’t at first recognize as MC Lars comes over to us and asks us if we’re here to see the show.

This giant man has a butter melting smile and his handshakes turn into back-pat hugs, even with me and my mate who were strangers to him.  We get to talking and MC Lars hears my accent and asks me where I’m from, I frequently forget that I have a discernible accent, and I tell him I’m from St Louis and how I’ve been trying to see MC Chris in concert for 10 years and had missed him in concert in St Louis 3 times including October 2016 and all that.  He then asks how long I’m here for and all that which leads me into talking about how I’m a study abroad student and somewhere around minute 5 of me rambling on I realise this guy has been giving me his ENTIRE attention as if I was an old friend and we were catching up. As my friends can tell you, I have no problem talking(2), but I’m not always used to having someone pay so much attention to what I have to say much less this strange celebrity.

I feel bad because I remember asking him where he was from as well and couldn’t tell you where without looking it up but I do remember he told me that he studied abroad when he was in college too.  He told me it really changed his life.  Dude’s a great artist, writer, performer, and if you ever see him live don’t be afraid to approach him.  If he doesn’t approach you first.

Footnotes:

  1. Remember “Offbeat, On-point: A literary blog…kinda”
  2. One of my friends has described me as “Fin doesn’t say much until you get him talking.  Then you can’t get the guy to shut the fuck up.”

MC Chris is Dreaming (album)

Happy Wednesday!

I need to start with an apology.  I mentioned previously that I got MC Chris to agree to an interview and despite repeated emails and facebook messages, MC has refused to acknowledge me further one way or the other despite saying he would do “what ever I can to help a fan.” I’m not going to spend this piece chatting shit (I don’t want to get hit), however before this I was going to write something like “They say not to meet your heroes but that doesn’t apply to MC Chris because this guy is LEGIT!!” however I guess timeless advice is timeless for a reason.

Don’t get me wrong, I still respect the hell out of the guy as a musician and an artist.  His work has been a really important part of my musical enjoyment over the last 10 years and I’ve made some really great memories over this guy’s music.

me-and-mc

Speaking of great memories, probably the best show I’ve ever gone to.

Anyway, the show must go on.  Thankfully this year MC Chris has released a new album so I do have something to write about and the good news is that his new album MC Chris is Dreaming is easily his best album to date and as a fan I’m really happy to say this.   However with a disclaimer like that, you know I’m going to be pretty honest.  Let’s get to it!

If you’re not already a fan, there are a few things you should know about MC.

  1. He’s a nerdcore raper which is a sub-genre of rap which focuses on the things nerds, freaks, and geeks (1) can relate to such as a love for candy, star wars, trouble with mates/social acceptance.
  2. He really likes skits on his albums to “…break up the monotony of the music…” which are mostly accessible but there is some continuity between albums and inside jokes/jokes about obscure things that may require further research.  I’m a fan of them but they can be polarizing among his fan base.
  3. Dude has a high voice.  It’s not a gimmick, his voice is just naturally that way and personally I think it’s fucking awesome.  I wouldn’t say it’s his thing but it gives flavour to his music that if it wasn’t present, I feel like there would be something missing.
  4. Dude gets vulgar at times.  Examples include The Masturbation Song and Booties for Breakfast (Booties for Breakfast is a personal favoutite, I’m not sure what that says about me though but booty is pretty sweet)
  5. This guy has some really sweet and unique beats.  Take for example songs like Aulpragasm or DQ Blizzard or Reese(2).  I love listening to this guys music on multiple levels.  Many of his songs really are an aural-feast and particularly Aulpragasm is a song I tend to listen to on repeat for like hours.  I didn’t understand the “[x] for 10 hours” thing on youtube for the longest time until I found certain songs like this (not saying that I’ve done a 10 hour of the same song but…okay yea I’ve done it, I’m shameless…in fact I’m currently in a Aulpragasm loop as I write this it’s ridiculous to be honest).

As I’ve mentioned, I’ve been a fan of this guy for over 10 years now ever since I first heard Fett’s Vette (“…you think you can cook, I got a grappling hook…”) and Hijack (“…go take a hike and don’t forget the trail mix, BITCH…”) and Evergreen (“on the first day of xmas my dealer gave to me a bag of shrooms and some lsd…”).

Anyway as I said earlier, MC Chris (in my personal opinion) had a really strong early career with albums like Life’s a Bitch and I’m Her Pimp, Dungeon Master of Ceremonies, and the prime album MC Chris is Dead.

However after that, for a long time, I really didn’t get in to his newer albums like MC Chris Goes to Hell, Marshmallow Playground, or Race Wars.  I mean, he had some solid songs from those albums like Drinkin’ Blunts  from MC Chris Goes to Hell (I LOVE the brass in this song), Best Day Ever from Marshmallow Playground (this song is so cute and this album lacks his usual caustic edge but it is really sentimental which I appreciate seeing the diversity and emotional vulnerability as an artist but most of it is just something I listen too only when I’m in such a specific mood that I still can’t place what it is), and On the Road from Race Wars (since I’m being very honest, I’m just really not a fan of this album overall).

Then MC Chris is Dreaming dropped and my. mind. was. BLOWN. I didn’t even know about the Foreverrr album until MC Chris is Dreaming came out (Foreverrr is a solid album, from skits to songs with Give Up the Ghost, I’m a Fucking Wizard, and Foreverrr) and honestly I’m kind of sad I didn’t know about Foreverrr album sooner so I could have spent more time with it.

Back to MC Chris is Dreaming.  This album has the strongest opening since MC Chris is Dead with the titular song MC Chris is Dreaming (unfortunately, I cannot find individual links to the songs from this album either on youtube or soundcloud however here is a link to his entire album

and trust me, the ENTIRE album is worth listening to and the skits are on point, some of his best ever) which opens with this slow build up for the first 38 seconds then it drops at 40 seconds and gets to work.  This album, like Marshmallow Playground feels like one of his most honest and vulnerable fitting the theme of Freddy Krueger being a central character in the skits.

freddy

For those of you too young to remember, Freddy was a dream demon who would find your insecurities in your dreams and kill you by invading your dreams and killing you in an ironic way that related to your insecurities which would manifest as a death in real life.  Rick and Morty had a good time with this character as Scary Terry.

He touches on some sensitive subjects as childhood obesity (Spanky), growing up with an alcoholic father (Pop Run), and substance abuse struggles (Ditched).  The last song, Ditched, really hits a chord with my personal struggle as I’ve mentioned before I am an alcoholic in recovery and despite having some sober time it’s still a real fucking struggle.  Lately it’s been extra tough being an American abroad, being almost 30 with no savings and a “colourful” resume/CV, and Cheeto Voldemort and the League of Unqualified Millionaires (Billionaires?)(3).

chetto

I am beyond giving a crap if people get offended about my opinions about the current administration.  We have a fucking REALITY TELEVISION STAR and repeatedly failed entrepreneur and FUCKING PEDOPHILIC RAPIST as a president so pardon me if I refuse to respect anything about the orange idiot.  However, now that the presidency is basically a joke and open to anyone I’m starting a new hashtag #FinandLouie4President2020  

Anyway back to MC Chris.  Dude’s a great rapper, he’s a funny guy, and his kid is probably too young to realize yet but he’s got a cool AF dad.  Yea, he’s kinda been a flake but he’s still a pretty fuckin’ good rapper.

 

signatie

Dude signed my notebook. I guess he’s pretty legit.

 

Footnotes:

  1. Here’s how I delineate the differences: Nerds – really smart, but are happy being reserved socially.  Geeks –  usually more passionate than traditionally intelligent and more sociable but usually focused around niche things like tabletop gaming, book clubs, LARPing (Live Action Role Playing).  Freaks – pretty much the crazy artsy types who kind of don’t really fit in with any one social group but are happy to be accepted or not a long as you don’t fucking judge us for our eccentric bodily modifications or outfit choices.  I personally identify as a Freaky-Geek.
  2. I can’t stop here, there are so many good ones like Older Crowd, Fett’s Vette, MC Chris is Dead…I could keep on but my word count is already getting high.
  3. Just to list a few: Betsy DeVos the new head of Department of Education has no experience with the public school system and WANTS TO SHUT DOWN THE DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION, Steve Bannon as White House Chief Strategist is a outspoken racist, Rex Tillerson who is the ExxonMobil CEO secretary of State (guess what? as CEO has done plenty of business with the Russians, which is the extent of his foreign policy experience, has pretty obvious conflict of interests, and is very anti-global climate change advocacy), and my personal FAVOURITE Rick Perry picked for the Department of Energy DIDN’T EVEN KNOW WHAT THE JOB DESCRIPTION ENTAILED BEING IN CHARGE OF THE NUCLEAR STOCKPILE AND NUCLEAR INFRASTRUCTURE.  I cannot fully express how fucking mad and anxious I am about this living fucking nightmare of a situation.

Interview with Mega-Ran (music)

Happy Wednesday!

A few months ago in November I went and saw my first nerdcore show in Manchester and going in the only rappers I was familiar with were MC Chris and MC Larz but everyone put on such an amazing show that after the show was over I went and talked to the performers and explained about my blog and asked if they would agree to an interview.

All have agreed however I’m still waiting for answers back from MC Chris.  I hope he finds time to reply to me but if not I will do a write up for his newest album instead.

The first up in the series is Mega-Ran.

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Mega Ran and me

Here’s a few of his songs I particularly like:

Miniboss

Megaman Forever

Suck it Trebek this is my favourite because it’s a under publicized story that Alex Trebek of Jepordy said with regard to nerdcore “doesn’t sound like fun” and with regard to nerds “losers, in other words”.  So yea, Trebek: you’re the looser.

Interview:

1. Who inspires you? Musically, artistically, writing, personally?
anyone creating, living their dreams, hustling. it’s so inspiring to see creators making a living on their art, and working hard to get it out there.
2. Did you always want to be a musician/songwriter or was there a “monkey touch monolith” moment?
I didn’t… I wanted to be a dentist. Music was a hobby or passion project until one day I put songs on the internet that got a lot of attention and led to more and more gigs which led to me quitting my teaching job to do this full time. Every day is like a dream.
3. What do you consider your greatest artistic and/or professional and/or personal achievement? (Feel free to answer all three or one or a combination, whatever man)
I think my greatest achievement is surviving, as crazy as that sounds…so many people from my old neighborhood let their dreams and passions die, as that’s what we’re told to do.. Somehow I held on and it’s working out. I’m a living testament.
4. What superpower would you have if you could have one and why/what would you do with it? (Seriously anything, from the mundane, to the established, to something completely original)
I’d like to be able to fly. I’d just use it to get to gigs, because I really despise flying on planes, haha. So if i could get to my shows without worrying about lines, checks and small seats, I’d be great.
5. If you could be in possession of a pocket dimension that you could travel into and out of at will, that contained any established cannon (books, movies, comics, video games, Salvador Dali paintings, anything) what would it be and what would you want to most do in there?
there would be a super NES with every game on it in there. I’d sit down and drink Ecto-Cooler and play Super Metroid all night.

A big thanks goes out to Mega Ran for being so awesome and playing along!!

 

The Creepshow On Tour (tour info)

Happy Wednesday!

One of my FAVOURITE bands is playing in St Louis this Sunday at the Fubar (tickets on sale here, seriously cheap, 16-18$).  I would love to see them there, but I know some of you live there and should go out to support them.

I love this band so much.  I’ve written about them previously but I really felt like once just isn’t enough for such a kick-ass band.  In a fit of “fan”-tastic (hahah bad jokes) inspiration, I came up with a possible set list to showcase the excellence you will experience if you do decide to go:

The Opening:

I like this song and music video.  It was a tough pick between this and “See you in Hell for the opening.

I was thinking something like I Am a Creature of the Night followed up by Sinners and Saints would be cool.

The Midshow:

I love this song.  This is one of my all time favourites because of the harmonica solo at 2m10s (seriously gave me chills the first time I heard this song).

Then get the energy back up with Failing Grade and something funny like Zombies Ate her Brains.

 

Closer:

Love this song and it’d be nice to see live but can we take a second and appreciate those BOUNCY curls on Kendra “Twisted” at 56s?! And while we’re at it, can we just take a moment to admire the amount of hair win going on in this video? Those spikes on Kristian “The Reverend”? And how about that sick ‘stache on Sean “Sickboy”? And Sandro “Blood”‘s slick 3/4 comb? SO. MUCH. HAIR. WIN.

Then towards the end of the show, it might be kinda funny to kill the lights like the set’s over and make the crowd wait for a moment…and a moment longer…and maybe one more minute just when it starts to get a little uncomfortable then play the “beep….beep…beeb…”ing of the EKG machine in the intro for See you in Hell and give ’em HELL!  However that’s too high energy to leave them on, there’ll be riots in the streets people will be like “YEA THAT WAS SO GOOD NOW I HAVE SO MUCH ENERGY!!!!! RAWWRRR!!!!” and St Louis is already a riot prone city, like that time in 1991 when Axl Rose dove into a crowd of his fans and started throwing punches because a fan was taking pictures of “his” concert. Yea we St Louisians don’t fuck around.

So it’d be cool to wrap it up with a punk rock classic Pet Sematary originally by the Ramones and based on the book by Stephen King, of the same name.

 

I hope you go and see The Creepshow this Sunday in St Louis or anywhere near you.  Here’s a listing of their tour stops:

creep-show-tour-dates

And to my delight, The Creepshow is coming to Leeds 10th August!!! Check for more locations close to you!!

Let’s Start a Revolution! (playlist)

Happy Wednes…wait wait wait, I just can’t do it today folks.

Yea everyday is supposed to be a happy day or something but I am really angry and you should be too.

Being an American abroad I am painfully aware of my nation’s reputation outside of our boarders especially after the results of the November 2016 presidential election.

nov-2016

My face when Trump was declared the next president of the United States.

Regardless of where you stood before the election, now that he has taken office he has done some objectively questionable things for someone who is supposed to be the leader of the free world. Some examples include but are not limited to:

All this doesn’t even begin to touch his litany of flagrant actions regarding control of the press by ordering the EPA to remove climate change statics from their site, his intention to cut safety regulations by 75%, nor his reinstating of the Global gag rule which bans international NGOs with US funding from providing abortions or providing information.

Don’t get me wrong ALL of these things horrify, disgust, offend, embarrass, and infuriate me.  However one thing that has me deeply worried is his pick for the head of the FCC: Ajit Pai.  Ajit Pai is against Net Neutrality and that is very very bad.

If you don’t already know what Net Neutrality is, watch this short video by CGP Grey and find out.

While we’re at it, let’s me provide a video also from CGP Grey explaining how, even though Trump lost the popular vote, he still won the election and why that’s a major problem in our system.

Now that you’re familiar with Net Neutrality and as most of my audience are fellow bloggers, I’m sure you can start to see the nature of the problem.  People like you, fellow blogger, and me, a person who can barely afford groceries and is going deeper into student debt, there is NO WAY I will be able to afford to pay fees to keep a fair amount of bandwidth coming to my site to provide you with wonderful content three times a week and this is just the smallest of concerns.  What really terrifies me is the implications on independent media outlets or really any media outlets that the FCC, aka Trump, doesn’t like and want’s to deny service or any media company that wants to squish the competition even further from the already small number of companies that provide 90% of the media to the country.

Picture getting clearer here? I really hope so.  Now it’s not all bad news.  Massachusetts is setting a good example by going full green by 2035 and in not American news India banned all forms of disposable plastics in it’s capital.

However great these pieces are,  they’re still a drop in the bucket.  The way we can really fight is to back a grass roots political REVOLUTION! Want to know how? Sign up and support Justice Democrats for real progressive candidates and the change us the people ACTUALLY want.

I can hear you now, “Fin! It’s Music Wednesday, where are the tunes?!” I’m getting to it.  I’m sorry but I had to get all that off my chest and when rallying up for a revolution, you have to know what you’re getting all worked up for. Anyway here’s some music to get your inner anti-establishment punk rocker riled up and ready to take some action!

To start we have a real classic by Rage Against the Machine, or more affectionately known as Rage.  Lyrically, its pretty basic but so is the message: The forces that be are out of control and this includes police brutality especially against minorities.

Next up we have a classic from the Misfits, Fiend Club. The lyrics are pretty basic here too but the message is simple: we march and we fall, we’re one and for all.  I felt like it was a particularly fitting song given the women’s march is believed to be the BIGGEST DEMONSTRATION EVER SEEN IN US HISTORY! We’re in this together folks, one and for all.

 

Woodkid is one of my all time favourites.  Such a bae but also his music is beautiful, his voice, his music videos all just so so fit! Iron is a a great song to capture that “calm before the storm” feeling of getting ready for some action jack.

I have already written about Dance with the Dead before but this song, Riot just gets me going.  Especially after that scream at 15s.

Now I realize that it’s kinda late for some of you, it’s like 10.30pm here (London time) or maybe you’re just really anxious about the state of affairs and prefer to calm down a bit.  Don’t worry, I got just the thing.

Science discovered that this one song reduces anxiety by 65%.

 

Anyway, remember folks: Democracy is not a spectator sport. We have the power. Not corporations, not the mega-rich, not reality television stars turn politicians. Get Angry. Get Active.

sport