With the holiday season over and all the craziness passed, it's about damn time I get back to the gym. It's always been a struggle for me to get into the routine of going to the gym. I get done with work at 5, drive 30 minutes to get back home and once I'm home I want to be HOME. I don't want to have to rush upstairs to get changed and rush off to the gym. Maybe that makes me lazy, I dunno, but after a full day of work I want to be lazy.
I pay for a membership and I should use it. I would like to lose a little bit of weight, even though I'm not really overweight, but it would be nice. I already run at least once a week with Mykel on the weekends, but I need to get back into weight lifting. I've thought about making a workout sheet to keep track of what I do and to do certain things certain days, but that seems like too much work. I want to at least start going to the gym every Tuesday and Thursday and possibly Saturdays. Those days Mykel isn't done with things until later in the evening, so I'm left to my own devices. Usually I chose to play some video games or something of that sort, but I can always do that on Monday and Friday when she works.
I really need to make a commitment to it and get back into it and make it a priority in my life.
There is a billboard on my commute to/from home and work that has a picture of Jesus carrying a cross and some Jesus/God related saying on it. The other day when I drove past it and truly noticed it for the first time I thought to myself what a WASTE of money that is. I'm not really sure how much it costs to lease a billboard for advertisements, but I can't image that it's cheap or else everyone else would be doing it.
This just further solidifies why I have absolutely NO desire to be part of a church anymore. I still identify myself as a "Christian" as I still truly believe in the core beliefs of Christianity. I believe that God created everything, that Jesus is his son and died for our sins and blah, blah, blah. I still whole heartedly believe that and always will, but as time goes on and I grow older and see the corruption and hypocrisy of the church going Christians, I want nothing to do with the religion as an organization.
Whomever put the stupid sign up could have used that money to put back into and improve the community. No non-believer is going to drive past a stupid billboard and think to themselves "Hey, they're right! I'm going to become a Christian!" So what purpose does it have? Guilt? Because frankly the only feeling I got when I drove past it was one of "I am holier then thou." It was a feeling of getting things shoved down my throat. They would do much better to go out into the community and invest that money into improving it. Why do you ask? Because that is what JESUS would do. If Jesus were alive today he wouldn't plaster his face on billboards like some kind of politician, he would go out into the community and TALK to people and LISTEN to people. He would help out the individuals who aren't well off. He would go help rebuild houses that got burnt down. It's just astonishing to me what Christianity has become today. I'm so sick and tired of Christians. They're all hypocrites.
I'm not typically one for New Years resolutions and I'm sure I've said this in my blog many, many times, BUT I would like to blog more, or at least utilize this blog more. I deleted my blogspot, which was previously dedicated to random stuff while this was more focused on music related things and my LJ was/is focused on the intimate details of my personal life. With the blogspot blog dead and only friends reading my LJ, I've decided to dedicate this to a little bit of everything. We'll see how it goes as I tend to start blogs and am good at updating, but then just stop after a while.
Anberlin was definitely one of my most anticipated releases of the year. They are one of my favorite bands and have been for quite some time. Their band is fronted by my favorite vocalist. I love, love, love this band. I was a bit cautious of the quick release of the new album considering their last album was released about a year and a half ago, but it's Anberlin so why worry?
Upon first listen to New Surrender I was mildly disappointed. Not in the fact that it was a bad album because it's not, but there's nothing special about it. It's standard Anberlin, which is great compared to most music that is released today. It just falls flat to me. It doesn't have the same pull that their previous three releases had. Cities in general was such an epic CD and I feel like that is an appropriate use of the world epic. It wasn't even just the music, it was the build up to the album that gave it that feel. The video they did in Seattle to hype the album, the fact that Aaron Sprinkle produced it, the advertising for the album, the deluxe edition, etc...the build up was intense. It had been 2 years since their last release and everyone was excited.
There really was no build up for New Surrender. I mean, there was definitely an anticipation on my part and I'm sure on the part of a lot of other posters on AP, but other then that I feel like I forgot about it between the time it was announced to the time it leaked. Upon first listen it was decent. It was Anberlin. Stephen's vocals sound as good as always. The overall tone of the album was good. It was just that, good. There's nothing that stands out about the album to me. Blueprints for the Black Market, Never Take Friendship Personal and Cities all had handfuls of standout tracks. Never Surrender has a few, but not quite as many. To me Stephen doesn't sound like he's putting as much emotion, feeling and heart when he sings as he has in previous releases. It just feels like something is missing. I was excited the moment I found out it leaked and excited after first listen, but after that I felt nothing. I felt the need to listen to it again and again in hopes that I would find something and for my general love of the band, but there are no songs that really get stuck in my head and I feel like I need to listen to over and over and over again. I feel no emotional connection to any of the songs and that has always been a big thing with Anberlin for me. There was always a connection to at least one song. I would sing it and I would feel those lyrics. Maybe it's because I'm at a different point in my life now then I was during NTFP or Cities, but I dunno.
I will most definitely buy this album and definitely look forward to listening to it in my car, but at this point it's probably my least favorite Anberlin release which is weird to me because up to this point I loved the three previous releases to the point that I couldn't even chose a favorite.
All in all a decent release that I definitely plan on purchasing, but it leaves me wanting more.
After an extended period of time with Fasciinatiion, I am beginning to love it. I am starting to shed the distaste I had for the album initially just due to the fact that it wasn't like old The Faint and I'm am starting to love the new aspects to the album. It's definitely a grower and I would highly suggest any long time The Faint fan that hated it on first listen, should give it a few more chances to let it grow on you.
I saw The Faint this Saturday with Shy Child and Jaguar Love. They were absolutely amazing as it expected. It was at the 9:30 Club and my girlfriend and I were on the floor in the very back and the show was sold out so we couldn't see much, but I didn't care. The Faint are one of the few bands that I see live where I don't become annoyed with the crowd. It's hard for me to fully ignore the people around me and their mannerisms that annoy me, but during a Faint show I let everything go. They easily put on one of the most visually stimulating shows I have ever seen. They make me drop all my walls and just dance my ass off and not give a shit what people around me think of it. I love, love, love this band. I think if I ever saw them again I would want to get a spot where I could see more of their show. Both times I've seen them I've been at the back of the crowd and due to me being short I miss a lot.
Seriously, highly recommend everyone who enjoys this band sees them live.
...and it's spreading to my favorite labels. I suppose this sort of goes hand in hand with my last entry a bit, but that's not my intention.
I think and I know a lot of individuals my age and enjoy similar music as me are hating the "power-pop" trend. I suppose that's what it is or at least I found/stole a label for it considering I'm poor with genre labeling myself. Two of my favorite labels, The Militia Group and Tooth and Nail, are beginning to sign bands associated with this trend. I was wishing and hoping that they would somehow escape and/or avoid this somehow, but I suppose it was inevitable? I've noticed two bands on TMG's roster that they have been pushing heavilty; Mercy Mercedes and The Summer Set. Now, I know nothing about the bands nor have I heard any of the music, but based on their overall look and promo pictures I feel as though I can safely assume what they sound like. The same goes for Tooth and Nail and their two bands; Capital Lights and Family Force Five. It just makes me upset and mildly sick that they're attempting to cash in on this horrible music. It seemed as though for a while they were going to avoid it, but I guess not.
There is just absolutely no substance to this music whatsoever and all these bands look and sound exactly alike, so how many of them do we really need? TMG and T&N have such a solid roster without them that I don't understand the need. They don't even seemingly "fit in" with any of the other bands the two labels currently have.
I've done a lot of complaining the past couple blogs, but I feel like I'm just a bit fed up and sick of what this "scene" is turning into and this trend everyone is latching onto. I've never felt this sick and fed up with music before.
No, this isn't about religion. Remember, this is a music blog! At least for the time being.
I'm beginning to lose faith in my dearly beloved band, Brandtson. Their new album was supposed to release on July 7th, but unfortunately that date was not met and no future date has been set. I'm beginning to think this is the end of one of my favorite bands. It's sad really, but at the same time disappointing to a certain degree.
I first fell in love with this band when I heard their cover of "King of Pain" on the Police tribute album. I heard "Escapist" on a mix tape a fellow APer had made and distributed on the website. These two songs led me to discover Send Us A Signal which instantly made me fall for this band. I searched and found all their earlier releases and while I loved them, nothing ever compared to Send Us A Signal. In 2006 they released Hello, Control which was quite a surprise. There were still aspects of the old Brandtson intertwined with the new electronic sound, but it seemed as though the old band I had loved had died in some regard. I still loved the album and loved seeing them live, but it was upsetting to a certain degree.
Not a lot had been heard about the band in quite some time then news of their next release was announced via their website. No other news was released. No album covers, no leaked songs, just a lonely website with a album name and a release date. July 7th came and went and the message changed that they were still planning on releasing the album, but did not know when. At this point in time it feels like it will never be released. I have heard rumors over the past few years that they were no longer on Militia Group (fulfilled their contract?) and that a breakup was somewhat inevitable. I kept the faith though and the hope that this wasn't the case and my faith was restored when I heard about the new release. My now my faith dwindles. I've heard that they have no management, no label, essentially nothing and they are releasing this album all on their own. It's extremely upsetting to me to see this happen to a band that has been somewhat of a standard in the "scene" for so many years. They're a band that not necessarily everyone loves, but everyone respects.
I wish there was some way to stop it, but I believe that if this album ever does get released it will be there last. It makes me extremely sad to see such a hard working band essentially succumb to what is essentially a shitty trend in music right now. I see Militia Group eating up bands like Mercy Mercedes and The Summer Set and it makes me sick. Their cashing in on the trend. They're cashing in on a shitty trend and essentially letting what is an amazing band go.
I really hope this isn't the end for my favorite band and I still hang out to a thin string of hope, but I suppose all good things have to come to an end sometime.
It's been a while since I really updated this blog. I just haven't felt the need to, I suppose. Maybe I've become bored with the music scene in general? Nothing seems to make my ears freak out these days. I've pondered the idea of turning this blog into my main blog, I'm not sure if I will. I had a blogspot and deleted it because I never used it. I have an LJ, but the only people that really read it are my best friends and they typically know what's going on in my life anyway. So, who knows...maybe I will in some attempt to get more readers? Not that I should really care, but due to the fact that I read random blogs from AP and such I kind of wish and/or hope that people might do the same if I start posting on this one more...who knows. Just a thought.
I downloaded The Faint - Fasciinatiion about 2 weeks ago. Now, considering the fact that The Faint haven't released anything new in about 4 years I was extremely excited for this album. It was easily my most anticipated of the year (aside of Brandtson, but we all know what happened there). Upon first listen I was extremely let down. The only song that stood out to me was "The Geeks Were Right" and I had already heard that on their Myspace page. The overall feel of the album was extremely slow in comparison to their previous releases. While I enjoyed the slow songs on previous releases, I thoroughly enjoyed the overall up-beat/danceable nature of everything (with the exception of Media) that they had released before. I was mildly heartbroken as this album did not invoke an immediate feeling of wanting to dance. I suppose that's what I expect out of the Faint? When I listen to their music I instantly want to move, regardless of where I am. I could easily break down and bust a few moves in my cube at work. I often make myself out to be a dancing fool when driving in my car listening to the band. However, this was lacking in that area. The beats were slowed down and there was a sudden influx of obvious beeps and bops and weird electronic noises that haven't been so predominate in earlier releases.
I was heartbroken and a bit destroyed inside, but decided to force myself to listen to it over and over again in the hopes that something would click. It took probably 5 or 6 listens before it finally did. I enjoy the album a lot more now, but it's taking a lot of work. The kind of work I would only put in for one of my favorite bands. I in no way hate this release anymore, I do like it, but it is definitely my least favorite release. I would never suggest a new listener of The Faint to check out this album because while it does still maintain the core of what The Faint is about musically, it does not maintain or invoke the initially feeling that made me fall in love with this band. It is definitely a grower and I feel like long time fans of the band will either hate the album outright or learn to love it with time.
I can't say enough how much I hate/detest/despise digital only releases or companies that only carry digital releases. This issue comes about after searching for Sleeping At Last's album Keep No Score on Amazon and finding that the only issue they had of the album was digital. SWT!
Now, I understand that some people love digital releases and it sort of holds the concept of preventing illegal downloading? Maybe? I, however, hate them. I find it to be pointless to pay $10 for digital versions of the songs. When I spend money on something, I want something physical that I can hold as the outcome. What happens when my computer crashes and I lose all my music? I'm fucked, right? It seems as though a lot of people are going more of the way of digital releases. I get the fact that it saves money for the artist because there is no money spend on physical production of the album, but for the consumer who enjoys collecting CDs that sucks! I am closing in on having 300 CDs and I'm quite proud of that collection. Some people collect vinyl, I suppose I collect CDs. I don't have a record player, nor do I understand music on a level to truly respect vinyl, so I go with something I understand. It's almost my trophy case of sorts. It frustrates me to no avail when I cannot add to that trophy case due to the fact that something is a digital only release. STUPID, STUPID, STUPID!
I just hope that companies/bands/labels don't go this way even more in the future. I feel like the mp3 is becoming the successor to the CD and that scares me.
Okay, so technically this isn't my first impression of the debut full length by Uh Huh Her as I first heard the new material at their show last week and have had the new album for a few days now, but I haven't gotten around to writing anything about it until now.
This album is extremely catchy. I find myself wanting to listen to it over and over again. It never gets old and the songs are constantly stuck in my head. The album starts off strong with "Not A Love Song." I believe that was the song they opened with at their show last Thursday so it instantly brings me back to that when I hear it. The chorus is very catchy and makes me want to dance, even sitting here now at my desk at work. Some other stand out tracks on the album are "Common Reaction" (which may just be my favorite), and a couple tracks taken off the EP, "Explode" and "Say So." They've reworked both songs for the full length and they sound spectacular.
This is definitely one of my favorite albums of the year. I love the moody/poppy combo with the electronics. The dual vocals are spectacular and if this album doesn't make you move, you are bound to be dead inside.
I just gave this album my first listen and my first reaction was "Sup JamisonParker?" Honestly, it sounds exactly like old JamisonParker. I really can't hear much difference. It's been a while since I've listened to anything by JamisonParker, but it seems as though Jamison lead most of the vocals and overall styling of the music.
Considering I listen to music while I'm at work, I don't really have anything too deep to say about the album (not like I ever have anything deep to say anyway) other then the fact that it pretty much sounds exactly like JP. I suppose that's nice, but then at the same time I don't understand the point of the breakup and name change. Well, I realize that the old name encompassed both their names and that wouldn't really work, but, I dunno.
Bottom line is, doesn't really sound like anything different he's done before.
In correlation of seeing Uh Huh Her tonight in Philly, I thought I'd take a bit of time to discuss my love for this underrated band.
The band consists of two individuals, one of them being Leisha Hailey (of L Word fame) and I won't deny the fact that the main reason I checked this out is because I am a huge fan of hers on the TV show. She had a prior music project called The Murmurs which my girlfriend is a big fan of. Anyway, I first caught one of their songs on a Paste Magazine sampler and saw an ad for their new album in the same magazine. I proceeded to do a bit of What.cd searching and came across their digital EP (I really hate it when bands release digital only EPs as I'm big on CDs and enjoy owning a physical copy to display in my room and show off). I checked it out and instantly fell in love. Which her previous project, The Murmurs, is more focus on indie-folk-acoustic type of music, an electro-indie sound is what fuels her new band. It's a perfectly blend of electronics and actual instruments. Their vocals sound beautiful together and the songs are catch as all hell. I find myself wanting to burst out into dance even at my desk at work as we speak. The songs carry moods and feelings well and I find myself becoming entranced by the sound.
This band needs to get a bit more love around AP as I feel a few individuals would really dig the sound. Their debut full length drops in late August and I am beyond excited and it is definitely one of my most anticipated for the year.
I'm not going to lie, part of me massive excitement for tonight is the fact that I'm going to have Alice Pieszecki standing right in front of me makes me giddy.
I made mention of this band (man?) a few posts ago and I would like to take some time to talk solely about this project instead of going off on a tangent about another band.
Like I said previously, my girlfriend indirectly introduced me to this band. I'm a sucker for electronics and anything catchy that will make me move my head. The music instantly caught me and I was intrigued, especially by a song featuring Jim Adkins of Jimmy Eat World fame. I love Jim's voice and the pairing of the music created by Styrofoam and his vocals, it felt perfect. He projects so much emotion when he sings. I decided to check out the full album when I got home and downloaded it off What.cd.
Honestly, it's fantastic. Judging by his discography, Styrofoam has been around for quite some time and somehow slipped by me. The electronic aspect is there, but it's not overpowering. It doesn't feel like a solely electronic album. The melodies and the songs evoke emotion. I love it and it's defining the album I continue to spin on my iPod regardless of how sorry I feel for my other neglected music. I highly suggest everyone checks this out.