Monday, October 31, 2005
The night before…
Tomorrow it's All Saints Day. That makes tonight All Hallows Eve, more commonly known as Halloween. Like easter and Christmas, All Hallow's Eve was an attempt by the Christian church to merge pagan ritual with their own doctrine. Unlike easter and Christmas, this time, the pagan side wasn't that easily eradicated. And to celebrate that failure, here are some gloomy, halloweeny links:
- Ars Moriendi — How to die in a proper way.
- The Darwin Awards — Named in honor of Charles Darwin, the father of evolution, the Darwin Awards commemorate those who improve our gene pool by removing themselves from it.
- Grim Ghosts — A resource for Disney's Haunted Mansion.
- The Rocky Horror (Picture) Show — It's just a jump to the left…
- Pumpkin Porn — Why? Because they could.
- Tim Burton's Corpse Bride — Usually I
hateFlash sites, but this one is pretty cool. By which I mean, tolerable.
- Dawn of the Knitted Death
- Cartoons by Inkfinger — Some are gloomy and halloweeny, others aren't.
And if this doesn't put you in a gloomy and halloweeny mood, maybe some very cute giraffes will…
Sunday, October 30, 2005
If you take all the interesting things I've done this weekend, add up their value of noteworthiness on a scale from one to ten, and divide that number by the amount of interesting things I've done this weekend, you should get a "divided by zero" error.
That being said, here's a comic that made me giggle, here's a comic that might be mighty interesting, and here's a list of the first 10 songs on my randomized pre-selection for part V playlist:
- Pandora's Box - It Just Won't Quit
- Opeth - Still Day Beneath The Sun
- Metallica - Wherever I May Roam
- Gustav Holst - Mars, The Bringer Of War
- Circle II Circle - Watching In Silence
- Iron Maiden - Alexander The Great
- Lisa Loeb and Elizabeth Mitchell - Catch The Moon (video version)
- Queen - Let Me Live
- Bruce Springsteen - Blinded By The Light
- Fire Inc. - Tonight Is What It Means To Be Young
Monday, October 24, 2005
One hundred and seventy-three megabytes
That's thirty-three files, adding up to two hours, twenty-six minutes and thirty-nine seconds of music. An eclectic collection. In other words, here's my annotated selection for the 700MB Audio CD Part IV (or whatever Pjotr decides to call it.)
- Alice Cooper - No More Mr. Nice Guy [3:07]
- Enough of that already. Since being Mr. Nice Guy is such an unthankful job, I decided to quit it.
- Anouk - It's So Hard (live) [5:02]
- The album version doesn't work for me. This more laid back acoustic live version does work.
- Apocalyptica - Life Burns! [3:06]
- Originally, I intended this to be the first song of my selection. A simple and heavy song to kick it off.
- Bonnie Tyler - Making Love (Out Of Nothing At All) [7:49]
- In 1982, Bonnie Tyler topped the American charts with "Total Eclipse Of The Heart". The second spot was occupied by Air Supply. Not with that god awful middle-of-the-road crap like "All Out Of Love", but with this very song. And in 1995 Bonnie got to record it herself for her umpteenth come-back attempt.
- Counting Crows - St. Robinson In His Cadillac Dream (live) [5:10]
- For a long time, Counting Crows annoyed me to no end. Then, last year, they collaborated with Bløf on a reworking of their song "Holiday In Spain". That song was released as a single, and this was one of the B-sides. And it started to grow on me. Maybe I should give them another chance.
- Culture Club - Karma Chameleon [4:02]
- Ah, the 1980s. Actually, I can't stand most of what's being labeled
80's music. Horrible, horrible stuff. Horrible pseudo-disco crap with the depth of a cheese grater (pun intended). That being said, I like this cheese.
- De Poema's - Laat Me Niet Staan [3:34]
- I don't get The Beatles. I'm sure they were revolutionary and influential at the time, but it just doesn't do it for me. However, I've loved this cover of "Don't Let Me Down" ever since I heard it for the first time in 1999.
- Demons And Wizards - Love's Tragedy Asunder [5:28]
- An album called Touched By The Crimson King, with some songs about Stephen King's Dark Tower saga sounded like a good idea. Unfortunately, that album isn't quite as good as its predecessor, but I quite like this song. Don't go looking for DT-references, cause they ain't there.
- Doctor Butcher - Don't Talk To Me [3:03]
- Sometimes, I don't want to talk about it. Sometimes, I wish they'd just leave me alone. Sometimes, I get so sick and sick and tired. Of their talk. Talk, talk, talk. Fuck them! And at those moments, I love to crank this song up.
- Dusty Springfield - Son Of A Preacher Man [2:28]
- The best explanation I can come up with for this song, is that I seem to have a soft spot for it.
- Elvis Costello - But Not For Me [5:04]
- When you buy a CD for just one song, sometimes one of the other tracks turn out to be quite a surprise. I bought The Glory Of Gershwin for the Meat Loaf track, but I do think that this one is a lot better.
- Fortyone - Turn The Record Over [0:14]
- Well, did ya?
- Frédérique Spigt - Mijn Hart Kan Dat Niet Aan [3:05]
- This song has been stuck in the back of my mind ever since the 1998 national preliminaries for the European Song Contest. This song should've won that, but it didn't. Huub van de Lubbe's lyrics are great.
- Frou Frou - Holding Out For A Hero [3:21]
- Have I mentioned that I like covers? No? Well, I do. Especially when they are quite different from the original. Like this one. The original is a typical mid-eighties disco-pop-rocker, but Frou Frou's understated electro-pop version gives the song an entirely different subtext. From the Shrek 2 soundtrack.
- Giant - I'll See You In My Dreams [4:21]
- And this cover, I discovered the other way around. Lana Lane covered it, and I went out and found the original.
- Hanson - If Only [4:32]
- Hanson aren't a guilty pleasure. I'm not the slightest bit ashamed to admit I like their work. While their debut was unpretentious bubblegum pop, the second one (where this one comes from) showed a lot of progress and promise. Too bad (for them) it didn't quite work out that way. But this song has been on the short lists for the previous two 700MB CDs.
- Iron Prostate - Bring Me The Head Of Jerry Garcia (demo) [4:38]
- This was the very first song I selected. It's a demo by a rather obscure punk outfit from the US, but it sounds amazing. Supposedly, the cast of "Cats" is responsible for the
- Kansas - Carry On Wayward Son [5:21]
- I was standing in a field in de Achterhoek, while Kansas was playing their set way of in the distance. There were only two songs I knew of them, "Dust In The Wind" (which I wouldn't call a favorite of mine) and "The Wall" so I was all like,
Surprise me.That they did. The last song of their set was this one, and it's much, much better than "Dust In The Wind". And since I did throw in Lana Lane's version of "The Wall" on Part III, you get this one. Some say it's the trademark Kansas song, I say it rocks.
- Karla DeVito - Heaven Can Wait [3:57]
- The third Steinsong so far (with one more to go) is Karla's cover of the Loaf's "Heaven Can Wait". The Loaf's version has a different arrangement, omitting the up tempo part, but Karla's take is much closer to the original musical version.
- Keane - She Has No Time [5:46]
- I started out by calling this a very, very moody pop song. But the more I think about it, the less I am convinced that that is a fair description. Okay, it's not the happiest song around, but it isn't all doom and gloom either. I think it's the best song from Hopes & Fears, which I would call one of the best albums I've picked up this year.
- Krezip - All Unsaid (live) [3:33]
- Another track that works better in an alternate arrangement. The punky album version is alright, but once again, I think this slowed-down, funked-up, slightly reggaefied acoustic version works better.
- Melissa Etheridge - Like The Way I Do (live) [10:05]
- Another one of those songs I've considered over and over again for the previous editions. No special reason other than that I dig it.
- Nightwish - Beauty And The Beast [6:24]
- Oh the horror. Miss Turunen was asked to leave Nightwish. Well, she wasn't the reason I picked this song anyway. No, that had more to do with the male vocals. Whoever sings it may not be the best singer out there, but he gets the point across. And in my book, that's more important than being a great singer.
- Puff Daddy feat. Jimmy Page - Come With Me (Stealth Sonic Orchestra Remix) [5:00]
- Based on the riff of Led Zep's "Kashmir", and one of the very few rap songs I like. Diz remix by Apollo 440 izz da bomb, 'aight?
- Pulp - Disco 2000 [4:33]
- Pulp never got big in The Netherlands. If I recall correctly, they've had only two slightly successful singles. "Common People" was the other, but I dig this one more.
- Rob Evan - Speaking In Tongues (live) [2:19]
- A new song by Jim Steinman. It's so brand spanking new that there isn't even an album version yet. And I must say, this song has the most obvious boner-line Jim has ever written. I mean, "For Crying Out Loud"'s
Can't you see my faded Levi's bursting apart?was pretty obvious, "Surf's Up" didn't leave much to the imagination with
Surf's up, and so am Ibut
You got the spark—I got woodgives both of them a run for their money.
- Rocket Scientists - Oblivion Days [7:06]
- If you got this far down the list, you could be wondering two things: 1) Where's the Loaf? or 2) Where's the song involving either Erik Norlander, Lana Lane or Arjen Lucassen? To answer both questions, there ain't gonna be any Loaf, and here it is. Norlander on keyboards, Lucassen on guitar and Lane doing backing vocals. When I came to the conclusion that my selection needed a shot of prog, this song is the first that came to mind.
- Santana - She's Not There [4:01]
- There ain't no good reason here either. Another one of those songs that I happen to like a lot, for no good reason at all.
- Ted Leo - Since You've Been Gone [3:39]
- While Hanson isn't a guilty pleasure, the original version of this song is. Big time. Big deal. And when I heard this all acoustic, all male version, well, I loved it even more. It's a nice spin. The 'bridge' part is from the song "Maps" by The Yeah Yeah Yeahs.
- the GATHERING - You Learn About It [5:08]
- It was either going to be the album version or a live version. In the end, the album version won because it is longer. Who can get enough of that lovely singing? I can't.
- The Police - Roxanne [3:12]
- *Roxaaaaaaaaane* Need I sing more?
- The Rocky Horror Show - Once In A While [3:21]
- From the original Roxy cast recording of the Rocky Horror Show. And for those of you who think,
But I don't remember that song from the movie!, well, you're right. It didn't appear in the movie, but it does appear in the stage-version. And that's where this comes from.
- Trail of Tears - Profoundemonium [4:55]
- The obligatory goth-metal-growl-fest.
Oh and before anyone starts to get some mighty weird ideas: I am counting 23 love songs. But that number could swing either way depending on what you would like in the lyrics. Twenty-three out of thirty-three songs are about love (or the lack thereof). That's 69.7%. And since I still hold the position that about 80% of all songs are about love (of the lack thereof), I would argue that my selection does not contain any hidden messages.
Well, apart from the Costello track, that is:
They're writing songs of love — but not for me Elvis Costello, But Not For Me
Sunday, October 23, 2005
In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth. Genesis 1:1, KJV
And according to James Ussher, that began at the nightfall preceding sunday, October 23rd, 4004 BC. Exactly six-thousand-and-nine years ago today.
Ussher, who was Archbishop and the biggest kahuna of all things
Catholic and Holy in Ireland. He spend quite some time studying the Bible, and published his findings in his book Annales veteris testamenti, a prima mundi origine deducti, which, of course, translates to
Annals of the Old Testament, deduced from the first origins of the world.
One should not be surprised that Ussher's account of the creation isn't undisputed. The Mayans believed that creation took place on either August 11 or 13, 3114 BC, some Chinese sects believe the universe is created and destroyed in cycles of 23 million years, and the ancient Greeks believed all came forth from Chaos, without caring too much about the when part. There are numerous variations.
And then you have those boring scientists, who argue that the earth is about 4.55 billion years old.
Me? I don't tend to believe in fairy tales.
Tuesday, October 11, 2005
Would you wonder?
Okay, since no one seems to be reading this anyway, I figured I could just as well take a break. Anyway:
- One would wonder if the photographer/digital media enhancer who made this picture has read Stephen King's "Song of Susannah"
- One would wonder if the programmer/flashjunkie who made this game has played "Weird Willie's Safarie". Currently I am hopelessly stuck in level 17.
- One would wonder if the person who made these photo's has been to London recently. He has, and it rocked.
- One would wonder if the people who produce this beverage, are wearing these shirts.
- One would wonder if an "all-of-Amersfoort-has-no-power"-outage and a busride to Hilversum as the only alternative for a possible connection to
Amsterdamwould be enough to keep me from seeing Dream Theater. Well, it ain't and for three minutes shy of three hours it rocked.
- One would wonder if someone would get reference in the title of this post…
Tuesday, October 04, 2005
5 points (and a bonuspoint)
With my selection of the 4th Ogg Vorbis/mp3 compilation disc finished, I started working on the liner notes. Or rather, my explanation as to why I've selected those songs. It's coming along nicely, but it ain't quite finished yet. But that doesn't really matter at the moment, since (as I understand it) Dappie is still uploading his selection. And although the production of the discs is "in house", Pjotr hasn't received my selection either due to some technical issues. I'm planning to post my notes when the CDs are released.
A couple of posts down (for now, at least), someone posted a comment that left me feeling quite bewildered. Bewildered and curious. It's the second time I received a comment from someone who I don't know (or has entirely coincidental the same IP-address as someone I do know). The first time, it turned out the writer of a book I namedropped in a post, but this time, I haven't got a clue who made the comment, and why she did it. Not that I mind such a comment, but now I'm curious:
Who is reading this? Leave a comment or so, even if it's just an anonymous wave, but I'd like to get an impression of how big my audience is. And while you're at it, comments or suggestions are welcome.
And while we're still on the subject of comments, I'd like to remind you all that I am not opposed to a catfight, and I don't mind lewd language, but lets keep it nice and friendly and stuff like that, okay?
More on last night: There was a support act. I saw the last two songs of their set (because diner took ridiculously long) and I didn't get the impression that I missed much. The sound was good, but I was glad I brought some earplugs along. Jon was quite entertaining when he wasn't singing, and when he was, he was spot on. I spent a good deal of the evening noodling along on the air guitar, while
singingalong. It's a wonder that both my neck and voice were nice to me this morning. If I were to have any point of criticism, then it would be that they only played for 95 minutes. That wasn't long, but it's acceptable. But maybe I'm just spoiled by all those bands who play two hour sets. 1 Anyway, I was home around twelve, with a new t-shirt (I'm not telling anything more just yet) and a guitar pick from one of the guitarists. Jay!
Anything else? Ehm, not really. Don't forget to wave, and I'll see y'all later.
1. That being said, I can't wait 'til monday's "An evening with Dream Theater", which promises to be at least two ~ two and a half hours of Dream Theater. ↩
A note for the ladies
Tonight, I went all the way to Tilburg, to see Jon Oliva's Pain in action. And just to ease my dear female readers minds: no, they did not play a shitload of love songs. In fact, they didn't play any love song at all.
Jon and the boys kicked of with "New York City Don't Mean Nothing" (which ain't a love song), and then went through the rest of the set, which consisted of "Jesus Saves" (and no, that ain't neither a love song or a gospel song), "All The Time", "Gutter Ballet", "Hounds", "Tonight He Grins Again / Strange Reality", "Ghost In The Ruins" (featuring a lot of noodling around on two guitars), "The Dark", "People Say — Gimme Some Hell", "Believe" (and no, even this ballad ain't a love song), "City Beneath The Surface" and "Sirens". After the obligatory half minute interval, they came back and played "Power Of The Night" and "Hall Of The Mountain King" as an encore. Three songs from JOP, and a shitload of Savatage classics. But no love songs.
So ladies: you all can sleep soundly on two ears now. I didn't listen to any love song at all tonight, so stop fighting in the comments, dammit!
Sunday, October 02, 2005
My weekend, part whatever
So this friday, instead of in Noorden, I ended up in Marktzicht. Can't remember much of what we've been talking about, but vaguely I recall a lot of noise about cars, and a bartender who, like me, believe that statistics are a load of crap. Which it is. The chance that something happens is fifty percent. Either it happens, or it doesn't. Regardless all the different variables and preconditions that you think there are. Either all said variables and preconditions add up to the thing happening, or they don't. Simple as that. But that was friday, and all in all, it wasn't too happening, but I did amuse myself quite a bit.
Saturday I woke up, took a shower, some breakfast, my bag and the bus to the station. This time, the trains were running, and I was home around half past elevenish. Didn't do anything worth mentioning. Although… For the last couple of years I haven't been too impressed with what Youp van 't Hek did, but I thought that "Prachtige Paprikas" was refreshingly entertaining.
Today, instead of one of the monthly diner parties, I had a brunch party. And that was quite entertaining too. So I sat there, eating, talking, eating some more, sippin' wine until half past five, then drove home to pack my bag and eat some more. Taxi showed up about quarter to seven, and I was home seven past eight after a quite uneventful journey. The only strange thing was that even though it was already dark, all the streetlights (and even the lights in the central staircase) were out. I guess they musta been confused about daylight savings time or stuff…
Saturday, October 01, 2005
Finally, I found someone who subscribes to my
the chance that anything happens is 50% theory. w00t!