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Archive for April, 2008

There may be hope…

Posted by rapaleeman on April 30, 2008

Everyone knows that I love Linkin Park.  Everyone also know that I was not happy with Minutes to Midnight.  The style of their music changed too much in that album.  The band was always about combining elements from all genres and putting them into one coherent package.  Besides “Bleed It Out”, their latest album sounded like a generic rock album with a little rap.  That was it.  Not terrible by any means, but definately not Linkin Park.

Now, most of the mainstream music listeners (who the hell is that really?) consider LP to be sellouts and looking to cash a paycheck.  What with both lead singers (Mike Shinoda and Chester Bennington) having solo projects (Fort Minor and Dead By Sunrise respectively) and the fact that they turned away from their “roots” to make a popular album. 

Why did I just rant on about that nonsense.  Well yesterday was the release of the new Busta Rhymes track “We Made It”.  What makes this special since I really can’t stand that idiot is the fact that Linkin Park also contributed to the track.  Mike plays piano and raps a verse while Chester provides the chorus.  The song is actually great. 

Truly the worst part about the single is Busta himself since he doesn’t seem to understand what the hell a beat is.  That and the fact that his excessive use of the “n” bomb in the unedited version is just unwarranted and totally distracting.  I usually go for the unedited versions of songs, but here the excessive cursing and vulgarity is just a distraction.  It’s not required.  Check the link and see what I mean.

http://new.music.yahoo.com/videos/Busta-Rhymes–59655776

Anyway, the piano and guitar riffs toward the end are intoxicating and Chester’s vocals are damn near flawless which is something I couldn’t say about Minutes to Midnight.  Mike’s verse is the best in the song.  Not because I’m biased, but because he seems to understand what the hook of the track is and what message is being displayed.  Busta hasn’t a clue and just rambles on in a completely nonsensical tone and beat.  Sometimes that works, but when you got a track that has this kind of a hook and rock beat to it, it doesn’t.

Anyway.  There may be hope.  Do I think LP has sold out.  Truly, yes I do.  When you charge 80 bucks for your Project Revolution tour and most of the bands either suck or put on a terrible performance (I love Taking Back Sunday but they were terrible at Nissan Pavillion) that money is wasted.  I remember when it was fifty bucks and honestly that was a steal.  I would spend that in a heartbeat again.  I doubt I’ll ever pay for Project Revolution again though.  True it’s all day, but really the only band worth seeing doesn’t come on until 930 or 1000 at night (it’s LP by the way).

I highly recommend this track.  It’s surprisingly good and much better than the catastrophe it could have been.  Busta Rhymes needs to stop.  He is terrible.  Always has been I think it is now just catching up to him.  Linkin Park shines in this single, though the rest of the band is noticably absent from the video.  Ironically you can see the LP drum kit and gear in the background so that is a little weird.  Also, Styles Of Beyond (Shinoda’s back-up band for Fort Minor really) needs to get their heads out of Mike’s ass and make their own record.  WTF are they doing in this video?  Nothing.  Shinoda essentially made them and I doubt they have the minds to succeed alone. 

Definately aquire this track.  Don’t buy it from iTunes though.  I am boycotting them (Apple) and their evil ways.  Damn Safari needs to stay the hell off my computer and iTunes needs to stop stuttering all the time.  It’s annoying and really just raping the resources my laptop has.  So I don’t care how you get it (you know what I mean).  Just get it.  If LP adds this much effort to their next album then there may be hope.

 

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No matter the package and prestige, a rip-off is still a rip-off

Posted by rapaleeman on April 25, 2008

Ok, so today is Friday.  I’m tired, have had a really bad day today at work due to not having written the correct words in my resume (not the content just the words) to get a promotion so life is kinda sucking right now. 

So to cheer myself up I turn the greatest band of all time JOURNEY.  Yes they are awesome and usually make me feel happy when I am blue.  I was listening to “Seperate Ways” (their greatest song) when I check my e-mail and see they are touring again.  I was extremely excited.  So I checked Ticketmaster.  $131 dollars for pit tickets.  They have got to be out of their minds.  So I check their website to see if maybe “he” has returned to justify the price.  Sadly “he” has not.

For those of you that don’t know, the “he’ is of course the greatest lead singer from any band ever.  Steve Perry.  He is the awesome.  Without him, Journey is incomplete and can never be taken seriously again.  Perry was the reason for their success and has said he would come back, but from what I hear Steve Cain is a jackass so that will never happen.

I need this.  No sir, I demand it.  He owes me.  Well not me as in myself but the other Journey fans.  To see him live on stage doing “Seperate Ways”, “I’ll Be Alright”, or “Faithfully” would be the best night of my life.

To see Journey now, what with their slicker than ever album covers and supposedly great new lead singer that sounds “exactly” like Perry (yeah….bullshit is right) would be a crime.  For them to be publishing themselves as Journey is a crime.  Admitingly, Perry wasn’t the original singer, but he made them (add Randy Jackson on bass since he was actually good for the complete best line-up ever).  It’s like Black Flag without Henry Rollins.  Who knew them or cared about them until that crazy bastard took the mic. 

Anyway, to package themselves the way they have is a crime against nature and a rip-off.  The songs won’t and don’t sound right (check youTube).  The production, while slick has no substance.  Journey is the greatest band ever.  Period.  To see this disgusts me and makes me wish I could hate them, but alas I can’t.  Their songs are just too damn great.

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Review: Cloverfield

Posted by rapaleeman on April 25, 2008

As promised.  Here it be.

Ok so everyone saw the trailer when it was 1-18-08 and attached to Transformers last year.  Everyone shocked and awed at the same time with speculation of what movie it was.  Everything from the Transformers sequel to Voltron was named but they were all wrong.  It was a small budget, big monster movie produced by JJ Abrams (Lost, MI:3). 

So 1-18-08 came and went.  I saw the movie in theaters and was both amazed and strangely disappointed at the same time.  It was a movie, shot handheld style (think Blair Witch but not as lame) about a giant monster destroying New York.  It had twists and turns (literally) in the viewing of the movie and the funny reports about people getting sick in the theaters gave me a little tickle.  In all I liked the movie, but didn’t really understand it besides the obvious monster attacking New York thing.

Well, it is several months later and the DVD is finally out (oh buy it at Target to get a cool little CD full of Indie songs that are actually good).  I bought it, watched it and also followed up on some of the viral marketing (the character’s mySpace and a few others) and finally have come to turns with the genious that is behind this idea and the overall execution of this property.

The movie is the same movie it was in the theater.  It satrts out as Rob, the main character that you can see, is leaving to take a new job in Japan.  They throw a big party for him and essentially we pick up in the middle of these individuals lives.  The catch is the movie is captured and being played back for us, the audience.  The movie that we are seeing is actually recorded over another “movie” of Rob and Beth, his former girlfriend, as the spend a day together.  This is key because at points when Hud, the cameraman shows footage to other people, stops recording, or drops the camera we can see what was on the tape in portions or little skips just like a real camera operates.

This concept works great and feels less like a gimmick and more like a fulll thought out delivery medium.  It also helps to break up the action or pass some time for our “heroes” to move to another place in the city.  It works and needs to be commended since I would hate to have to be the director and editor on this beast.

Anyway, as the party is flowing on, the monster attacks obviously and all hell breaks loose.  They core group try to get out of the city, but then realize that Beth is trapped in her apartment and needs help.  So Rob decides to trek back into the city to get her.  They do and obviously have a few run in with authorites and the beast.  An awesome “fuck yeah” situation happens when troops show up and start launching technology at the beast from the middle of the street.  It is pretty awesome.

I don’t want to spoil the rest of the movie for you, but there is some pretty cool stuff to be seen and dialogue is pretty funny at times to break up the “holy shit” theme of seeing a giant forty story creature.  It is a fantastic movie.  The acting is a tad week at times, but overall Hud and Rob (who carry the film since the chicks can’t really act) do a good job.  The script or lack thereof since I hear a ton of it was improv is well executed with only a few “issues” that you will notice when you see the movie.  If not just ask me and I will explain further.

The special effects are good to the point of excellent and that is because you don’t notice them.  There are a ton of transitions and CG elements that (other than the monsters) are not that obvious and help towards building the realistic feeling of the movie.  The sound is overall good since it is essentially from a single mic on top of the camcorder.  It’s not, but it is supposed to be and it sounds like it, just in 5.1 surrond sound.

The main complaint is the jerky camera and angles.  Yes, it is supposed to be like that, but sometimes you can’t tell what is going on.  It is supposed to make you fell like “one of the gang” but it is kinda distracting.  Especially at the party which goes on for way too long.  Other than that a great movie.

The extras are pretty good.  They help to explain a little more.  The real focus should be for people to go online and spend 20 minutes on the various viral sites.  They will essentially help you get an idea about where the monster comes from (the ocean) and how old it is (a baby).  Other things like why people are at the party and other cool things.  Worth the extra effort to expand on this flick.  Not required, but definately interesting.

Overall this is a great must-see movie.  Period.  Buy it.  You will want/need to see it again to get everything it has to offer.  Not to mention the viral stuff.  This is by very definition more than a movie.  Definately pick this up.  Also remember Target gives you a sweet CD.

HIGHLY RECOMMENDED

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Random Post 4/24

Posted by rapaleeman on April 25, 2008

Well it’s Thursday.  Not much happening this week.  Smallville is on tonight, along with Supernatural and Grey’s Anatomy.  Yes, as a 26-year-old male I watch Grey’s Anatomy.  The show has been going downhill since midway through the second season, but I usually will watch a show no matter how bad it is (examples, Flash Gordon and Painkiller Jane on Sci-Fi). 

Last weeks Smallville was amazing.  Well the last 10 minutes were.  The face-off at the cemetary was epic and makes me wish Lex was sticking around next season, though I hear he’ll be there for the majority of it so my mind is at ease.  Supernatural is also brand new tonight and it looks good.  The overall story of the show is good, but the “monster of the week” stories are sometimes week.  It’s good that the two brothers have such great chemistry since they make the show interesting and surprisingly funny.  I also like Dean’s (Jenson Ackles) taste in music so that helps.  Blue Oyster Cult for the win.

Let’s see, I picked up The World Ends With You.  I’ll put up a review once I beat it or maybe not since who knows if I’ll have time to beat it in a reasonable amount of time. 

I also bought Cloverfield this week.  I saw it in theaters but watching it at home after going through the viral marketing has given a clearer intention as to what JJ Abrams and Co were trying to do.  I got a review in the oven and if it comes together like it’s coming now it’ll be up sometime tomorrow afternoon.  If not, expect to see it somtime after the weekend.

And that’s it.  I’ll check in when I got some more info.

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Review: In The Name of the King: A Dungeon Seige Tale

Posted by rapaleeman on April 22, 2008

Ok, I know everyone has been eagerly foaming at the mouth for this one (does sarcasm come across well in written form?).  This review will be pretty short in the fact that there wasn’t much to this film.  The overall arching story was terrible and barely coherent.  The characters were clunky and most importantly: why was it over 2 hours long?

The story is that a farmer, named Farmer (Jason Statham, the only part of this movie that can be called ok) whose son is killed by the Kruug, decides to go kick some ass to get revenge.  Oh and his wife along with the rest of this random village on a cliff (which seems to be the only village in the land besides the castle) have been taken prisoner to be slaves or whatever.  Who cares?  The story is stupid.  It has no point only to build up this tension that the Kruug are bad and this wizard or something, played by the usually reliable Ray Liotta, is trying to take over the land as the leader of the Kruug.  Liotta is doing the nasty with some other magician’s daughter to steal her power or something and Matthew Lillard (they say his name three different ways in the movie so I don’t remember what it was) is the King’s nephew and hates the King.  If none of that made any sense to you then join the club.

After some massive intrigue and awesome plot twists that you never see coming (how’s that sarcasm coming?) the movie just plays out.  The ending is terrible.  The battle scenes, for which there are many, are fake and unconvincing.  The same with the props.  Though when the Kruug catapult flaming people through the air at the King’s army, I laughed and was amused for a few seconds.  No, I didn’t make that up.  They fling people.  The final showdown between Statham and Liotta is terrible with horrible SFX and the fact that The Stath can break Liotta in two at any given point in time makes the fight more ludicrous than it already is.  They are so uneven and Statham is just going through the motions in the fights.  Anyway, a terrible story.

The acting is even worse.  Liike I said above The Stath is the best part about this movie and he really isn’t that great here.  Liotta hams it up pretty bad, along with Hellboy, Ron Pearlman who looks just like Hellboy here, but not red.  Weird really.  Claire Forlani as the damsel works, but she can’t act.  She’s hot enough to actually warrant a save, but seriously can’t read a line to save her life and neither can the stupid kid they got to play Staham’s son.  Lillard is terrible as well and cries most of the time.  Where’s Shaggy when you need him?  Let’s see, Brian White was servicable, but his character was terrible and Leelee Sobieski (or however you spell her name) was as wooden as ever.  She is the female Keanu.   One face/reaction to everything.  Kritanna Loken was in this for like 10 minutes.  She was Painkiller Jane in the forest.  One person I didn’t mention was the King.  Burt Reynolds is the King here and I wonder how much he was paid/needed to do this movie.  For that matter, how the hell did Uwe Boll get any of these actors/actresses.  Most are at least decent B-listers with a few big names in here.  Puzzling, but I guess money does buy everything.

Look, I’m not going to go on anymore about this terribe, terrible movie.  Do not buy/rent/watch or even think about this tripe anymore.  It’s sad that this is Uwe Boll’s best movie.  It really is but when you make crap, some piles smell better than others depending on what you eat I guess. 

NOT RECOMMENDED

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