Monday, October 31, 2011

Happy Halloween!

Just wanted to wish a happy Halloween to everybody. Sadly, this year's costume cost me my beard, which I miss but am already working on regrowing.

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Primordial - Redemption at the Puritan's Hand

I am well aware that this album has been out for months, so this review will be old news to any Primordial fans. That said, I only bought it a few weeks ago and I've been listening to it more than anything else since then, so I'm going to briefly review it anyway.

First off, I should note that while I've been passingly familiar with Primordial for a while and I've heard several of their songs in the past, this is the first full album by the band that I've ever listened through. I therefore won't be able to place this record within the greater context of the band's catalog. Instead, I'll just have to discuss this album on its own merits. With that in mind, here we go.

There are two major elements I noticed throughout this album that feel worthy of note. The first was Primordial's excellent sense of balance. As anybody who listens to much metal that falls in the general pagan/folk/viking sphere knows, many such bands have a tendency to go a bit over-the-top with their medieval-ness. Personally that's never bothered me, since I'm a dork who eats that shit up, but I do recognize that it's too cheesy for many people. With this record, though, it never felt to me like the fantasy end of things got pushed to an extreme. Instead, they maintain a healthy balance. It stays metal, but the Celtic flavor never really disappears.

The second big factor, and I've heard this one mentioned before, is the lead vocalist. At first I wasn't too crazy about him. In fact, in the past the vocals have been the main reason why I didn't explore this band further. I can't really explain why, but they just did nothing for me. Somewhere during the course of playing through this album, though, a switch inside my head was flicked. It was kind of bizarre, but by the end of the record, I wanted nothing so much as to play it again and listen to the now-fantastic-sounding vocals. In fact, sitting down to write this review prompted me to yet again play my personal favorite track, the marvelous Bloodied Yet Unbowed.

I don't know how this album stands relative to their previous efforts. What I do know is that it has won me over as a convert who now intends to further explore the rest of their catalog. I'd give it an A-.

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Metal Halloween

Okay, so I know I've said I don't care for most of his music *gasp*, and I also realize that my costume could have been done a lot better. That being said, I decided to dress as King Diamond for Halloween this year. He's got the perfect image for it, I already owned the hat and coat, and it was a good way to stay warm. I went to Columbus to "do" Halloween last night, so I probably won't dress up on the actual day, but I've posted this picture of the finished product so you can see my total failure to imitate his make-up. That finely detailed stuff is hard to do. The hat helped a bit, and I did get a nod of recognition from a black metal guy I passed.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011


I recently went to see a production of Eurydice (which was fantastic) and I was reminded just how incredibly effective the use of the right song can be at just the right moment. Call me a pansy if you like, but in the final seconds when the music started just before the stage went dark, I almost cried.

Friday, October 14, 2011

Funny How That Works

Occasionally a quick, unplanned snapshot will come across like it has been carefully orchestrated. While on a recent trip to NYC (my first time in that city) my mom took such a photo of my siblings and I sitting in front of a statue at the edge of Central Park. It struck me so immediately as something that looked like a cover from a modern radio rock band that I couldn't resist editing it, slapping fake band and album names on it, and plastering it on the internet.

So anyway, here it is. I'm front and center, in case you were wondering.

Skeletonwitch Again

I've noticed my concert-going experiences these days are becoming increasingly one-dimensional. It's not hard to figure out why that is, though. As I've previously mentioned, Skeletonwitch are from here in Athens, so they come back and play somewhat regularly. Additionally, since this is a college town, and not a terribly big one at that, the majority of other shows in the area are annoying indie hipster crap. So, with all that being said, tomorrow night will make my 3rd Skeletonwitch show in about a year. I'd certainly like to mix it up a bit more with the bands I see, but that requires some driving and actual expense, whereas this show costs $7. In my opinion, that's a price that is pretty hard to say "no" to.