May 18, 2009

Music of the Week #1

OK, OK, so I failed for last Sunday. I'm making up for this week. :)

Music of the week ending Sunday May 17th, 2009.
  1. Does It Offend You, Yeah?
  2. Bloc Party
  3. Danger
  4. Nine Inch Nails
  5. Incubus
Does It Offend You, Yeah? is a great band referred to me by Marli. I'm very late on picking up on these guys, their album hast been out since March 2008 and contains a number of tracks that have made some intense appearances in other media, such as Fast & Furious 4, American Teen (movie) and more. I am quite addicted to the album "You Have No Idea What You're Getting Yourself Into". Favourite tracks include: "Being Bad Feels Pretty Good", "With a Heavy Heart" and "Weird Science".

Bloc Party - I can't stop listening to the Intimacy album. I haven't gotten around to listening to the Intimacy Remix album... yet. Top tracks for Bloc Party this week are (still) "Halo" and "Biko".

Danger wins this week's top track with the new single I found on his MySpace named "07h46". His mix of 80's style synth with today's flare of electronica is mind gobbling and oh-so addicting. Other great tracks include "11h30 (DatA Remix)" and "Revolte at 22h10".

Nine Inch Nails - This stat may be a little flawed as I was listening to the NIN|JA EP released to promote the tour NIN is on with Jane's Addiction and Street Sweeper Social Club. And mostly I've been listening to the Street Sweeper Social Club singles on the EP named "Clap for the Killers" and "The Oath".

Incubus - My golden oldie and one of the highest ranking artists on my account. My favourites of their entire discography include "Echo", "Here in my Room", "Dig", "Southern Girl" and "Wish You Were Here".

What were your top artists of the week?

May 10, 2009

Star Trek

Got around to watching Star Trek last night and I hope to summarize the movie by saying "Pew Pew". That is all.

Seriously, the movie is a must see. It's got the plot, the acting and the action. On that note I should probably mention that I've never been a trekkie, I've never seen anything Star Trek before. And even without the previous knowledge of anything regarding the Star Trek universe the movie was easy to understand. There were a few moments where people laughed / sighed at what I assume to be references for the trekkies in the audience. But those were few and didn't change much in regards to the plot.

The entire art of the movie is amazing and the space battles grandios (pew, pew!) I am excited to re-enjoy this movie on Blu-Ray when the time comes.

May 9, 2009

Music of the Week #0

New regular for the blog (I hope I can keep it regular): What music I've found and listened to each week. Since I've started my musical quest in February I've been exposed to many new bands and new music.

To Do this I'm using two tools, an iTunes Smart Playlist and my account. The Smart Playlist is setup to limit me to 25 tracks I've played most in the past week. My account will help me actually get real play counts and let me have a second data set to compare to.

If anyone has suggestions about getting more accurate data, don't hesitate to leave them in a comment.

So, to get things started I've titled this post #0 as an introduction and to post some data up until May 3rd. Tomorrow is Sunday and I'll have a chance to review everything for the first actual "Music of the Week #1" post.

Music of the Week ending on May 3rd.
  1. The Lonely Island
  2. Thornley
  3. Peter Fox
  4. Gorillaz
  5. Justice
  6. Danger
I'm a big fan of The Lonely Island album "Incredibad". This seems a bit out of my usual listening pattern, but I listen to it for the absolute hilarity of the lyrics. I smile and giggle every time I listen to it.

Thornley to me is Canada's undiscovered gem for music. Ian Thornley's band has great live shows and albums. Songs from "Tiny Pictures" and their debut album "Come Again" were embedded somewhere, somehow into my playlists.

Peter Fox is a stranger to most located outside of German-speaking Europe. He is one of the frontment of band "Seeed" and has recently launched his solo career. His debut album "Stadtaffe" (translated 'city monkey') is a very interesting venture into the quickly popularizing genre of Dancehall. What I like about this album is the stronger focus on the merger between Dance and Hip Hop. The outcome is an album that doesn't get boring and interesting beats.

Gorillaz 'nuff said.

If you haven't listened to the french electro band Justice you need to - now. (No really, go do it now) Their main album "Cross" is so perfectly engineered that I use it as a benchmark for other electro albums. Justice has set the bar quite high with that album, too. The live album "A Cross the Universe" and their most recent EP "Planisphère" are a great addition to "Cross".

Danger is a new addition to my library. Until his site is done there's very little actual information about the artist on the MySpace page. I currently only own the "09/14/2007" EP with a great track naming convention of "11h30", "14h54" and "19h11". The single "Revolte at 22h10" was an instant hit in my book. Good beat, distorted singing, original melody - I'm sold.

More tomorrow when has generated last week's stats.

May 3, 2009

Bloc Party @ Odeon, Saskatoon

Last night was the Bloc Party concert at the Odeon in Saskatoon. I was very excited for this concert as this was the second time I got to see the band perform live.

The first concert was in at the '2005 Einslive Königstreffen' (German wikipedia entry) in Herzogenrath, Germany - Here's a flickr set I found. It was my first real festival with bands like Tocotronic, Max Herre, Gentlemen, Mando Diao and the final huge act of the evening Franz Ferdinand.

Anyhow, 2005 was the year Bloc Party's Silent Alarm album was release, and just months after the release was the show at the Königstreffen. The only single I'd heard at the time was Helicopter, so I didn't know what to expect. They put on a great show and the next day I had purchased Bloc Party, Mando Diao and Franz Ferdinand Albums.

When I heard on Rock102 that Bloc Party was coming to Saskatoon in January I bought tickets asap. I was excited. Bloc Party! Again! It's been 4 years!

In the mean time the band had released two new 'main' albums and various remix albums. The main albums 'A Weekend in the City' and 'Intimacy' were released in 2007 and 2008 respectively. The changes the band had gone through in influences and musicianship have been very apparent throughout the two albums.

Fast forward to today (well, last night, really). The night had finally come, Bloc Party time. Bloc Party recognized it was there first time in Saskatoon and promised they would rock us - if we rocked them too. Through out the show we were ordered to let out our inner cheekiness.

The show was a perfect mixture of songs from all three albums and crowd interaction. The highlight of crowd interaction was Kele, lead singer, crowd surfing a good 30 metres to the Odeon's little sound booth, whilst singing!

The Odeon should look into a new A/C, I'd say it was a good 40 degrees or more in the entire building, before the show had even started! Even the band commented a few times that it was very warm, also resulting in Matt, drummer, to play in his boxers.

Musical highlights for me included live sampling and manipulation by Kele and Russell, lead guitar. Very apparent in songs like 'Mercury', 'Ares' and 'Halo'.

So, despite the blistering heat, the show was absolutely fantastic and I hope to see Bloc Party again in the near future!

After the show I heard that some of the band were at my favourite local pub O'Shaes and went to check it out. I met a few friends and talked for a while up on the patio, and finally saw Matt. I apologized for interrupting and we talked a little, about that night's show and the 2005 festival. It was a nice little chat and I left with a signed show ticket. :)

May 1, 2009

Crank: High Voltage (2009)

I just watched Crank: High Voltage with my friend Marli and her boyfriend.

My first impression: awesome.

A bit of a deeper drill down:
I was a huge fan of Crank (2006), which is probably grounds for my liking of Crank 2. The easiest way to describe Crank 2, for me, is to say "It's like Crank all over again, but more excessive, trashy and inventive".

The plot of Crank: High Voltage picks up where Crank left off  3 years ago. Chev Chelios (Jason Statham), poisoned by a chinese synthetic by Ricky Verona (Jose Pablo Cantillo) after an intriguing plot to kill Triad leader Don Kim. After a day long chase through Los Angeles, Chev finally tracks down Ricky and the two nemesis face off in a mile high fall to the ground. With both main characters seemingly dead Crank: High Voltage takes off.

Mere seconds after the crash landing of Chev on an elderly woman's car, violently rebounding to the pavement, our hero is, literally, scraped off the street by a group of Triad grunts and tossed into the back of a van. In a series of blurred visions we realize Chev's heart is being taken out and replaced by an artificial unit. Without wanting to spoil the movie I'll digress:

Chev chases his heart through Los Angeles all day. During the chase he's reunited with his "Doc" and his girlfriend.

Excessive, hilarious action sequences make the movie what it is. A no-brain-required movie for Statham and action fans alike.

I'll conclude by recommending this movie. I've never laughed so hard during an action movie in my life.