Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Doughovah's Witlesses

Doughy Ramone drinks our milkshake, eats our Cheetos, and impregnates our Airedale. His carefully crafted arguments have rocked our worldz, virtual and otherwise. He's the rubber to our glue, the umbrella in the fruity drink, the led in the listing conservatard zeppelin. Just ask him; he's totally pwned all us librul fashizznits and our deviously bien pensant ways.

You can just picture poor Jonah hunched at his computer, in his padded helmet, repeatedly yipping, "I know you are, but what am I?" at his monitor, until his mom finally comes down to the basement and threatens to cut off his allowance. Beats working.


thedevilzone said...

Ahh, fuck that useless waste of oxygen. I've disturbed my beautiful mind enough on his account. You know what we haven't had in a while? A music thread! What are you listening to these days, H.?

Heywood J. said...

Great idea. Per your suggestion some time ago, I checked out some Clutch, and I really like them. I had only heard Spacegrass and Drink to the Dead at that point (both of which I liked a lot), and most of what I've heard since has been great. I think The Mob Goes Wild may be one of the best political metal manifestos I've heard since Tool's Hooker with a Penis or even C.o.C.'s Vote with a Bullet.

It's funny how the internets have completely changed how we find and acquire new music. Back in the day I was the typical music geek spending a third of my paycheck at Tower Records on something I read about in this or that guitar mag. Now if I hear about something interesting, I'll grab a download or two off LimeWire right away, and if I like it, I just go to iTunes and pay for several more. Much less of a crapshoot, but I imagine it will make the "album" pretty obsolete in another couple years, if it isn't already.

Which is kinda too bad, because I frequently like the "album tracks", the songs that were never going to get airplay, and maybe not even get performed, but had their own character nonetheless. Those songs will be the first to get chucked when bands pare their list of release tracks down to the six or eight "hits".

It will certainly force musicians to rethink their strategies (as it already has), and with any luck, it will drive a stake into the corporate revenue model, which fucked up music far more than it innovated it.

Anyway, some other current bands I've come across that I like: Deepfield; Paramore; eurometal bands like Evergrey and Sonata Arctica. I've checked out some Opeth where I really liked the music, but the vocals were that Cookie Monster shit that grinds my gears after about 30 seconds. Still, they're amazing players and I love their ambitious crafting of epic-length pieces. But their "mellow" album, Damnation, is excellent and very listenable, Pink Floydian with that really creepy "darkness falling in the Schwarzwald" vibe that Nordic bands specialize in.

I've also had a lot of fun going back a bit and listening to some stuff I hadn't heard in some time, some of it more hair-metally or even pop: Enuff Z'nuff Strength; first three Van Halen albums; Jellyfish. I don't know why Jellyfish never broke big; those are just amazingly well-crafted songs, start to finish.

Genesis Seconds Out, esp. Cinema Show and Lamb Lies Down on Broadway. I came across the Anaheim '81 bootleg from Rush, and there's some tight performances of songs they haven't played since that tour. And I'd forgotten how much fun The Misfits were; there aren't too many better straight-up gut-punch rockers than Dust to Dust, or the Elvis-isms of American Nightmare.

Maybe the best recent "rediscovery" for me has been Voivod's Nothingface. Such an underrated disc, made all the more ballsy in that it came out near the end of the hair-metal frenzy, when Poison and Winger had just finally given way to Guns 'n' Roses. It's the antithesis of all those bands. Right away I got those familiar goose-bumps hearing Into My Hypercube after who knows how long. Great reminder of why I keep going back to the well.

thedevilzone said...

Back in the day I was the typical music geek spending a third of my paycheck at Tower Records on something I read about in this or that guitar mag. Now if I hear about something interesting, I'll grab a download or two off LimeWire right away, and if I like it, I just go to iTunes and pay for several more.

Yep, yep and yep. Ah, the good ol' days when I would drive out to the record store and buy a tape based on a few sentences in a guitar magazine. Now I do the same thing with Limewire and iTunes, and often go by Amazon and buy a used copy, which can almost always be had for a few bucks, especially if it's not a huge band to begin with. My cd collection is sort of like what a trophy case is for other people, something to show off for company (or for lending out discs). I still like having a physical something rather than just an mp3.

My new hobby is using Windows Movie Maker to slap together a quick slideshow of pictures accompanied by a song and posting it on YouTube. It's either stuff that I feel was criminally overlooked that I want to proselytize for, or stuff that I've often wished someone would post so I could send it to other people (until I finally got tired of waiting and decided to do it myself). You can look up my username (thedevilzone) and see if anything there appeals to you.

I've definitely been interested in the way the business is changing. has had several good interview links with artists talking about it - Rob Halford was one who recently released something entirely via mp3 and he was talking about how much more financial sense it made. A former guitar teacher and friend of mine (Greg Brown) put his stuff on iTunes since, as he said, it's the cost of making discs that will kill an unknown artist. Josh from Type O Negative and Neil from Clutch were both recently talking about how touring and t-shirts are pretty much the only way bands like them can earn a living now. And of course, Radiohead's experiment with In Rainbows was interesting.

I also zeroed in on the odd filler tracks on so many records. Shallow Ground, off the C.o.C. record you mentioned, was one that I listened to over and over. Sweet Sweet by the Smashing Pumpkins. And oh, so many more.

Deepfield; Paramore; eurometal bands like Evergrey and Sonata Arctica.

All new to me, so I'll have to check that out. I remember thinking that when Pantera was going platinum and landing at #1 on Billboard, that it would be bad for heavy music in the long run, and now, almost 15 years later...yeesh. Thank fuck the Limp Bizkit types are gone at least. Still, everybody's screaming their balls off just because, even the emo radio bands. And the Cookie Monster stuff has always bored me. I mean, teenagers need stuff to scare their parents with, that's always important, but still, it really does all sound alike. A subway car full of idling lawnmowers and a vocalist with a mouthful of rocks.

The one thrash band that I liked in '91 and still like today is Sepultura. I had fallen away from them for a while after Max decided that he wanted to be the Brazilian version of Korn before leaving in a huff over the other guys not wanting his wife to manage the band, but I rediscovered them last year and thought, Holy shit, they actually got better! Like Pantera, they understood dynamics enough to slow things down into a wicked groove rather than going a thousand miles an hour from start to finish. Andreas Kisser has to be one of the most underrated guitarists in metal. In fact, I'm alternating between typing here and posting some of their songs to YouTube.

Ginger from the Wildhearts has been a madman, releasing something like five records (one Wildhearts, four solo) in the past two or three years, and he's always worth hearing. Like Jan and Dean colliding with Motorhead. Actually, his country music alter-ego, Howling Willie Cunt, might have put something out in that time as well.

Glad you liked Clutch; Neil Fallon is such an awesome lyricist. No one writes like that anymore, it seems.

I've mainly been into more electronica/big beat lately, going back and picking up all the stuff I missed out on when it was new. Primal Scream, Chemlab, the Chemical Brothers, Fatboy Slim, the Crystal Method, Skinny Puppy, Indian Ropeman, Overseer, Hardknox. I'm sure I'll think of more as soon as I post this, but if so, I'll come back and drop some more names.