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Saturday, April 29, 2006

"I Cannot Remember Not Being..."


Pain of Salvation - Be

Sounds like modern-day Yes (the 70's British Prog Rock band), with the propensity of injecting lame and cheesy philosophical/theological ideas. The music is an amalgam of bombastic sound arrangements, off-kilter time signatures, virtuoso playing, and rich harmonies. But the concept of nature and religion may be too pompous and overbearing even for progheads. A satisfying listen, but a bit too cerebral.

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Last Music Video Syndrome...although 'alang pictures.

Just Hate Me
Pain

I gotta think of something
to make you think less
of me, that I am nothing
to hold on to, cause we are through
I dislike you

I wish that you could hate me
then things would be so easy
just get me off your mind
if the bitch would have a son
then I would be the one
so hate me

geese, flying from the winter
that's what I should do, do, door become a sprinter
and run away
cause we are through
I dislike you

I wish that you could hate me
then things would be so easy
just get me off your mind
if the bitch would have a son
then I would be the one

I am being mean
like no one's ever been
just hate me...

I wish that you could hate me
then things would be so easy
just get me off your mind...


The setting is in the near future, in outer space, inside a starship (???), where man and machine lives in harmony.

The main character is a robot/cyborg, a once esteemed creation by this balding, grim-faced scientist.

The scientist is currently undertaking a newer, bigger, and better creation, which renders the robot obsolete. However, the scientist is unable to complete his creation because it lacks that piece that would make it function. The robot enters his creator's room and witnesses him busy at work, without even looking or noticing the robot.

The robot leaves his master alone, going into his room. As the robot scours for something to hold on to in his divider, he finds a picture of him and the scientist, looking happy and glad. He hurries down to the scientist's room and show this to him, to harken back the times then the robot actually mattered to the scientist.

He got in, the scientist still busy at his work, and he taps him from behind. The scientist turns around, looks at the robot, and stares at the picture frame with their pictureon it. He pauses for a moment, as if remembering something important, then holds the robot's arm. Suddenly, he takes holds of a screwdriver and he unscrew the arm of the robot, opens it, and finds the missing piece that would actually complete his currently creation.

The next scene features the robot walking in the dark corridor, alone, away from the room, where the scientist is able to attach the missing piece for his current creation. However, the scientist looks away from the arm of his latest creation, and stares at the open space where stars dwell alone, and eventually die.

Then silence.

Thursday, April 27, 2006

Under the Sunny Summer Steamy Sky...

shopgirl


Agalloch - The Mantle


...is a grey area.

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This is the album responsible for inciting a musical movement called The New Wave of Swedish Death Metal a.k.a. Melodeath, more so than The Gallery, Jester Race, or any other album out there. The melodic, yet crushing sound have become the signature of Gothenburg bands. The album has reached its influences into broad areas of rock/metal music, especially with American bands like Shadows Fall, Lamb of God, Killswitch Engage, etc. etc.

However, on the other end of the spectrum, this album is vilified and scorned by metal purists, claiming that the band has sold out from its original sound to create this pop-structured album. This album single-handedly produced a stream of copycats that has diluted the metal scene, which eventually destroyed the movement the band once owned.

Now, everybody has their own opinion about this album. But as far as I’m concerned, Slaughter of the Soul is simply one of the better albums released in the 90’s, one of the best guitar-oriented Metal albums ever, and easily one of the most influential albums in the current wave of Metal music. At the same time, Slaughter of the Soul is a flawed album that shows flashes of brilliance, only to leave listeners ultimately unsatisfied.

The songs are typified by an in-your-face attack, heralded by the sterling guitar work, a mix between brutal Death Metal and the vigor of Power Metal, and tight, active rhythm section. The vocals are a mix of Hardcore shouts and Black Metal screams. The album is appropriately produced by Fredrik Nordstrom, notable for his guitar-heavy recordings.

The guitars really stand out in this album, production-wise, as well as song-wise. Slaughter of the Soul boasts some of the most visceral riffs in metal music. ‘Cold’, ‘Suicide Nation’, and ‘World of Lies’ contain creative and powerful guitar lines with loads of melody that makes the music whistle-able, ala Heartwork.

In ‘Cold’, At the Gates has crafted a timeless Metal classic that will surely stand the test of time. The crushing intro which leads to the lurching mid-tempo riff is the stuff made for headbanging. The off-kilter bridge riff and the serene acoustic part, leading back to the bridge with an overlaying short, but sweet lead is excellent. And the chorus is damn infectious. A must hear for any Metal fans.

However, the problem with the album is that most of the songs follow a verse-chorus-lead formula that becomes predictable as the album wears on, which renders them easily digestible. The songs have the tendency to be powerful and memorable at one point, but after repeated listens, they lose their luster and impact. Another gripe with the album is that the band recycles chord progressions heard on previous songs. Nevertheless, this doesn’t discount the songs from its greatness, since all of them are performed with venomous intensity and urgency.

Overall, despite its shortcomings, Slaughter of the Soul is still highly recommended. My suggestion: buy the album, and make your opinion about it.

Monday, April 24, 2006

The Inaugural Weekly Phoughts to Tonder

I’m starting a weekly rumination entitled Phoughts to Tonder because I realized that I don’t really share anything substantial on my previous posts, it’s just lame pictures and dodgy English. So, without further ado, here it goes!

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I just realized that I am lame because I’m a hopeless Metalhead, although the artists and bands that I truly love (Elliott Smith, Jeff Buckley, Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds) do not even contain a Metal element in them. All the sites I visit in the net are devoted to Heavy Metal music, album reviews and news. I write reviews for Encyclopedia Metallum. I post messages on rakista.com, and metal-rules.com. I need to get a better life...

I am starting to have faith with the band again. The last two gigs at Fairview and Malate were just powerful and crushing, thanks to Laney Hardcore Max amp and Boss MT-2 MetalZone. Ultimately, it’s the music that saved me from losing my mind on this one.

Do yourself a favor and buy a copy of Samba Rock by Trio Mocotô. Every time I listen to the first track, I imagine myself half-drunk and blindfolded in a wildass party as I attempt to hit a piñata with a spiked club, when I accidentally hit someone in the forehead as I took a full swing, leaving him bleeding and writhing on the floor. Yep, it's that fun...

Things that I learned in working for a newspaper:

  • Rule of thumb: ALWAYS bring a voice recorder.
  • Listen and understand what they’re actually saying when you’re interviewing them. Or at least try to appear as if you understand them.
  • Come in earlier than the given time, 15 minutes or so. They usually have freebies for early birds. I got a free CD player and a copy of Lira Luis’ audio CD which costs around P1,500($30) from her Round Table at Oakwood. Neat.
  • Don’t eat anything before going for a particular event. Usually, and I mean 90% of the time, the event provides the food for the guests.
  • In an event, anything can happen.

The people from Dockers drew my name up from the lot. While I was just minding my business on the corner, taking down notes and nibbling on salted peanuts, the advertising agent called my attention prior to the presentation of the winners, and told me I won. When they called my name and asked me to come up in front to get the check, I can't remove the damn smirk off my face. And that's not even the good news, because along with a gift check comes a bag containing Carlo Rossi California Red! CARLO ROSSI!

  • Most important of all, don't piss off your boss! I think I almost did.

Sunday, April 23, 2006

Johnny Alegre Affinity, and Paul Magat


I saw them perform at CCP Liwasang Kalikasan in celebration of Earth Day 2006. With all due respect to the challenging guitar playing of Mr. Alegre (top middle), Mr. Koko Bernajo (top right) takes the cake with his performance loaded with fills but still keeping check with the song's time signature. Pretty arresting stuff.

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Speaking of drum gods, I witnessed Paul Magat in action with Hellfire Theory at Greenvine, Malate. Hindi siya tao.

Virgin Beach Resort

There is still a Virgin Beach

THE Philippines has long been famed for its beautiful and scenic beach resorts—a magnet for tourists to this part of Asia. Through the years, many of these hotspots have been saturated with commercialization and modernization, thus compromising the authentic experience of a tropical paradise.

Where then do you go for a genuine feel of the tropics today? Head out to Laiya in San Juan, Batangas, and try the Virgin Beach Resort. Life & Times recently discovered that privacy and the purity of sand and sea could be found at the resort, the vital combination for a total state of relaxation.

click here for the full article

Virgin Beach Resort

Wednesday, April 19, 2006

"The Last Life in the Universe" and Dockers


Vivid in its lifelessness. More than adequate cinematography. Sweet-ass soundtrack, with music similar to Black Tape for a Blue Girl.

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Dockers paints luxurious San Francisco

NOTHING gets classier than Dockers. For the past 20 years, this Levi-Strauss apparel brand has been well known for its smart casual wear for men, ranging from khaki pants to functional attires. On April 4 Dockers further underlined its changing image from utilitarian to classy fashion with the opening of Dockers San Francisco, a new luxury-concept store on the ground floor of Glorietta 3, Ayala Center, Makati City.

click for the full article

D' Lucky Ones

Pwede na rin... :)

Tuesday, April 11, 2006

Holy Week Musings

How do you spend the Holy Week?

JUST before the start of the summer season, when the school year is over and people are already making vacation plans, there is period where we all experience slight changes in our day-to-day lives.
This is the time when mornings are usually calmer and more peaceful than usual, since we don’t have to go to work for a few days.


This is the time when local television stations tone down the usual jeer and cheer of their programming, replacing their noontime variety shows with special presentations that convey moral lessons melodramatically. Other stations choose to play reruns of wholesome, feel-good TV series, like Seventh Heaven and Early Edition (or at least from what I remembered) for the whole day.

This is the time where traffic in the metropolis is nonexistent, for almost all of the commercial establishments are closed, including the malls. The only destination available for people to go to, if not the 24-hour service of McDonald’s and Jollibee, are the Catholic churches.

As strange as it may seem, such scenes are how urban Filipinos spend Holy Week. During this period, we as Catholics are called to take our time out of our regular lives in order to reevaluate our faith, and figure out the things that we have done for ourselves and to others that have led us to this point in our lives.

Click here for the full article

Sunday, April 9, 2006

Architect Lira Luis, and Immortal


The way of Lira Luis

Much has happened in the life of Lira Luis, the US-based architect who is the first Filipino graduate of the Frank Lloyd Wright School of Architecture at Taliesin West in Scottsdale, Arizona, the prestigious institution named after the late father of modern architecture. Despite her brilliant accomplishment, Lira is still passionate about making bold changes in her field. On April 4 she officially launched her audio book FRANKly Speaking: It’s the WRIGHT Way—Looking Outside Inside at FLW’s Architecture, and with it has definitely established herself as one of the youngest trailblazers in the world of architecture.

Click here for the full article

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IMMORTAL + LEGO = METAL!

Saturday, April 8, 2006

Adidas Adicolor 2006

The Adicolor Series 2006
Colored individualities


For those colors which

You wish to be beautiful,
Always first prepare
A pure white ground

—Leonardo da Vinci

ART begins from the ground up. It starts from an idea before blossoming into something far greater than itself. A successful art is an ultimate expression of the self, something that is capable of captivating people’s hearts and inspiring a movement. Art is also a celebration of the creativity that one possesses and nurtures, giving way to the endless possibilities in His creations.

As all great things start from somewhere, sports brand adidas’s newest line began with its signature canvas training shoes, and for its design, gathered the imagination of some of the most creative personalities to execute their colorful expressions on the footwear. The result is the Adicolor 2006 collection, which according to the brand celebrates “self-expression and customization.”

Click here for the full article

Friday, April 7, 2006

A Tribute to the word 'Pulpol'


Pulpol (pul'poll), n. bobo, oblaks, walang kwenta, useless, worthless, penniless, sh*t, crap.

So there.

Monday, April 3, 2006

The Gathering, Tabloid Tycoon, and Black Metal (again)

The Gathering - Home

From All Music:


Ever since their debut as a fairly standard-issue black metal band in the early '90s, Dutch rockers the Gathering have shifted their sound and style a few times, particularly since adding lead singer
Anneke van Giersbergen on 1995's Mandylion. Home, the band's first studio release in nearly three years, comes after the birth of van Giersbergern's first child and is their most overtly pop-oriented album yet. First single "Shortest Day" sounds like an only slightly harder-edged versions of the Cardigans (a good thing), and other songs, like the keyboard-heavy "Alone" and the echoing, atmospheric bass-led pop of "In Between," are goth-oriented alternative rock with no metal influence to speak of. Home may be a bit of a shock to some longtime fans, but it's the logical conclusion to an ongoing trend in the band's music, one that suits van Giersbergen's low-key murmur of a voice quite nicely.

Will most definitely buy. Support obscure, yet immensely moving music!
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Tabloid Tycoon
Amazon’s Product Description:

Get the real dirt or just get filthy rich. There's no scandal you can't handle in Tabloid Tycoon. Hire the best reporters and paparazzi money can buy to create the most outrageous stories and get the most revealing photographs. Fill your rag with thousands of shocking and uproarious headlines using the in-game story templates. From hilarious headlines to the most bizarre situations, you're in charge of it all.

Verdict: Addictive for approximately 24 hours worth of playtime. After that, it becomes a waste of time.
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PANALO!

Sunday, April 2, 2006

…about a song that does not make sense anymore, and Black Metal

Storm
Devin Townsend

If you wanted to,
...say you wanted to...
If you wanted to save the world
Where could you start? How could you start?
If you wanted to feel like I feel
...like I feel
You're running dry...
...I'm flying high
We're running on feel
You wanted to be, what you've never been before
We worked hard for a living
We worked hard for it all
You run and hide,
...don't run and hide
I'm starting to feel OK
But I'm wasted
And I'm failing
Oh Tracy please
Can't you see?
It's just me
I wanted to feel
What I've never felt before
I was tired of the living
I was tired of it all
Time, time
...it's only...time.
If we wanted to,
...say we wanted to...
If we wanted to save our world
I'm waiting here, waiting
Waiting here baby please...
STAY WITH ME

We wanted to be
What we've never been before
But are we tired of the living?
...Are we tired of the war?


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Man, Horgh is just flat out tubby; there’s no two ways about it. That gut-guard is about to burst, and when it does, watch out for a lethal barrage of flying metal studs. You can’t see it in the picture, but his right armband has HORGH written on it, which fucking rules! And what on earth is Abbath doing? What kind of pose is that? It looks like he’s about to be hit by a bus and Horgh, unable to rescue him, is on the sidewalk screaming, “Nooooooooo….” Maybe he thinks he's in some black metal version of The Matrix -- Bullet Time Abbath. One of our Ruthless brethren put it best when he said, “If a man has grown tired of Horgh’s nipples, he has grown tired of life.” The best part is that Immortal isn't even a band anymore. These two just get together for photo shoots. Jesus... Horgh should just go pro wrestler and get it over with... Bam-Bam BigaHorgh...

TOP 10 MOST RIDICULOUS BLACK METAL PICS OF ALL TIME

(THE OTHER) TOP 10 MOST RIDICULOUS BLACK METAL PICS OF ALL TIME

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May taong matatanggal sa picture na ito. Promise.

Saturday, April 1, 2006

Band Credo

A band is not merely a collection of individuals playing their specified instruments. A band does not just perform the music they have created over a period of time with precision like a metronome. A band is not a business venture saddled by constant gigs and looming deadlines. Nor is a band a group, such as ours, heavily influenced by the Gothenberg sound in Sweden (In Flames, At The Gates) typified by harsh vocals coming from a female (!), interlaced with guitar harmonies, frenetic riffing, and ripping leads, as well as a menacing rhythm section. A band is not as simple as that.


A band is a unified entity, collated by the efforts and ideas of its members. A band must strive for a vision, not only of one person within the group, but also by everybody else part of it; its members, its listeners, and the non-listeners. Once the vision is established, the band must work towards this vision, and not let the vision walk towards them.

A band decides as a group, not because a member says otherwise. Everybody must take part of the band and speak out their mind about band issues because it is the only way for them to progress and grow as a group. Silence due to lack of participation or a neutral stance is unacceptable, for it would only cause further grief and anguish in the long run, when other members are not giving themselves entirely to the band’s purpose.

A band is an expression of the lifestyle they live for in this world. It is the brand of music they play, the style they exhibit, and the attitude they emanate, that determines how they want to be seen by the people around them. The band forges its own identity by enfleshing the sound and attitude the members have come up with. Simply put, the individual part of the band plays this particular kind of music because it is what makes him. Without it, he or she loses face in this world.

A band is bound by respect and confidence for each other. At some point, the members of the band would eventually have to consider each other as friends because not only are they sharing the same choice of expression, but also becoming the person that they must be through the help of each other. They must work each other’s weaknesses to grow as a band. Furthermore, in times of crisis and problems, the band must support and talk their issues with each other, since a band happens to be a collective effort. Nobody must talk sole responsibility of a particular decision. Once a choice has been made, everybody in the band becomes accountable for its repercussions.

A band is in no way a form of escapism, but it is a reaffirmation of what we hold dear in this world: music and its proliferation to the masses. One must not use the band as a medium to merely reflect and contemplate on the ‘what could have been’ and the ‘say it ain’t so’ in one’s life, because instances in life similar to this would have gone and passed like a fleeting memory longing to be forgotten. Rather, a band must march on, improving life by singing and performing their creations, making changes in our current situations, to become better people, and sing about what really matters, what we can still redeem and save.

A band is all about having fun. Playing music is about releasing oneself from the straddles of everyday life. Success lies not in the number of records that one sells, or the number of gigs they played on, for they are superficial achievements that are sure to fade in the near future. Success, therefore, is achieved with the camaraderie the members of the band shared, and the way they have built and strengthened each other throughout the years. This is the key to having a great band.

A band, after all has been said and done, when everybody has given their part and has at the same time enjoyed the fruits of their labor, grows beyond the member’s comprehension. The band is not anymore reliant to its members to exist. The music does not have to be associated with the personalities that are integral in the creation of the band. Instead, the band becomes an idea in itself. In the end, people ultimately would not remember the members that made the songs possible, but they would remember the words, the note, and the music that moved them, and that has given hope in their existence.

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Bakit ganon? Bakit nagmamadali na lumabas ang mga tao sa sandali’t nagbukas na ang labasan ng MRT terminal? Saan ba sila pupunta? Mahalaga ba ang kanilang pupuntahan? Hindi ba makapaghihintay ang kanyang pupuntahan? Bakit ganon?

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