Alright, so I know nobody posts here anymore…

•May 17, 2010 • Leave a Comment

But fucking Dio man? Fucking DIO? I mean holy shit. That’s fucking Dio that’s dead, man.
What the hell?
This is horrible.

-Zach (darkorchestra)

And now that I’ve done a REAL post…

•November 25, 2009 • 2 Comments

…shameless self-promotion time!

Alright, so I’m still trying to start a band. Last time I said that, we were called Papertowel Tribesmen, and we were up 2 guitar players and a bass player. But PTT died, the bass players schedule got fucked up, and the other guitar player doesn’t play any more. So me and my cousin are trying for something. We don’t have an official name yet. So, basically same shit, just down a name and a bass player. Awesome.

Regardless, me and my cousin PJ jammed. Specifically, we jammed to a preset breakdown drum beat on his effects pedal. This was the result, and we think it’s pretty cool. The solos are 100% improvised.

I’m the one closest to the camera, for the record. It was shot on a fucking Handycam, so the audio isn’t top of the line, but you can hear everything for the most part. Criticism of the constructive nature is not only welcomed, but in fact the reason I’m putting this here.

-darkorchestra.

Holy tits, a new review?

•November 24, 2009 • Leave a Comment

Yeah, pretty much. Nothing new has came out that I’ve really gave a shit about. All the bands I’ve started getting into (mainly Protest The Hero, who are fucking sick if you haven’t heard them already) haven’t come out with anything new in a while. Well, except one. Anyone familiar with Strapping Young Lad?
Well, it’s not them. They’re still broken up. But Devin Townsend is doing new shit. Right now, he’s doing “The Devin Townsend Project”. Now, I have a rule that states if your band name is your name followed by “project”, you’re an asshole. But for Devin, I’ll let it slide for two reasons. First, it’s Devin Townsend and I fucking love him. Second, it’s a legit fucking project.

Anyway, the first DTP CD has already come out a bit ago, and it’s called “Ki”. It’s really cool, but far from metal. It’s the first of 4, each CD having it’s own style.  However, the newest CD “Addicted” came out fucking like…6 days ago. So that’s fresh. And it’s more metal. And it’s poppy too…but if anyone can make metal music out of pop shit, it’s Devin Townsend, so let’s see how this shit fairs.

So, I’ll be honest, I don’t fucking own this CD…yet. I’m listening to it on youtube, because I don’t have any fucking money.

Regardless, this CD kicks ass. It starts with the title track, “Addicted”. The track offers a nice sounding riff in the intro. Nothing complex, nothing fast. Something with pace, with substance and tone. It’s cool. He revisits his “Strapping Young Lad” era vocals a little bit on this track, and CD, for sure, which is good. Then kicks in this chick named Anneke, I believe. Now, I’m not usually the biggest fan of female vocalists, but holy shit is this girl good. Goes with Devin’s style on this CD very well.

Anyway, I can’t break down fucking every track. Let’s just be basic here. The guitar is cool. There’s nothing particularly fucking complicated. If you’re listening to this looking for some Necrophagist like riffs, you’re not even close to the right album. This one is super vocal oriented, from what I can gather. Devin follows this tradition he has of being an insanely fucking awesome singer, and shows a lot of substance in his voice. For example, the vocals in “Supercrush” are more emotional and…deep (in substance, not tone) than on “Addicted”. You can hear what he feels in a sense. The drummer holds it down. Again, nothing over the top crazy, just a good beat, good sound.

Oh right, it’s worth mentioning that he really utilizes his “Wall of Sound” technique like a mother fucker in some parts of this CD. So much sound coming at you at once, it’s almost intimidating. It’s like the sound of the cosmos or some shit, making you feel insignificant. Epic shit.

Looking for some standout tracks? Cool. Really, all of them are fantastic. But the one track that stands out the most is “Bend it Like Bender”. The song has been described by Devin himself as a Euro-pop dance song…that’s still metal.

So that about wraps up my review of “Addicted”. Or well….this does:

[5 out of 5 (or 3 out of 3) illogically placed crayons]

Review: Jeff Loomis – Zero Order Phase

•September 8, 2009 • Leave a Comment

[jwopitz's rating: 5 out of 5 stars]

What can I say bad about this album?  Nothing.  It’s a shred head’s wet dream.  Where the likes of Jason Becker, Marty Friedman, Tony Macalpine, Vinnie Moore, etc. left off, Jeff Loomis steps in to lead the shred movement.  Yes we still have our Satriani and Vai but lately they have left me wanting more.  Loomis provides.   Okay let analyze this a bit more.

Where most of the older shred still had a prevalent sound in neo classical roots, Zero Order Phase is more like the chromatic, non-diatonic cacophony that is Nevermore’s signature sound.  There are plenty of sweep pick licks to satisfy even the most ravenous Malmsteen/Dragon Force fans.  But couple that with the ominous, grit from Loomis’ Nevermore playing and you have a truly unique shred album.  Rhythmically speaking it has plenty of disjunct, syncopated rhythms laden with plenty of tastefully done double bass pedal.

Okay I do have on complaint for this album: It makes me want to give up playing. what’s the point.  Now to the choice bits.  If you had to sample only 3 songs I would suggest:

  • Miles of Machines
  • Race Against Disaster
  • Jato Unit

Sorry this is so short of a review but I have found myself lacking the motivation to write much lately.  The bottom line is, if you like Nevermore, if you like shred ala-Cacophony then you really ought to own this album.

Up the Irons!!!!

holy shit…

•July 6, 2009 • 2 Comments

It’s been a while since I’ve posted. I was going to post a review of Lamb Of Gods “Wrath”, but I figured you all would have guessed I gave it 5/5 (insert witty replacement for stars here).

Oh, I know! Quick-but-super-fucking-late review of mastodons “Crack the Skye”.

Kicked ass. Totally epic, super riff heavy, great vocals, “Oblivion” is almost too perfect of a song. 5/5 cracked skyes.

Anyway, is anyone else going to see Judas Priest w/ Whitesnake on Tuesday in Boston? Because I am. British Steel anniversary tour. Going to kick serious ass.

I’ll eventually think of a good post,  promise.

Review: 10 albums you ought to have

•May 11, 2009 • 2 Comments

Yeah so the passion of actually writing something about music has shrivled up.  But you always have to share the love, you know?  So here is a rundown of 10 albums I have discovered over the past few years that I think you might wanna give a listen to.  And in no particular order here they are:

  1. Concealed by Augury – technical death metal with hints of Cynic, black metal influences and some kinda cool choral arrangements. Angry shit indeed!
  2. Holographic Universe by Scar Symmetry – Swedish technical melodic death metal.  Dunno, I just really like the laid back sound of this album.  The singing is alot more digestible than non-stop cookie monster vox.  I also like the lyrical content as it is on par with Cynic and Death
  3. Riders of the Plague by The Absence – Kinda a combination of Swedish technical death metal and American thrash metal.  Every song on this album is kick ass.  These guys have the sound so many wanna-be’s try to sound like.
  4. In Search of Light by Aabsinth - these guys have a sound that is very hard to describe.  Its definitely metal and sometimes they sound like the same genre as Mastodon and then sometimes they have a death metal sound.  I can’t say that I really focus on the music so much as enjoy having it in the background.
  5. Nemesis by Super Heavy Goat Ass – yeah these guys are kinda a jamming rock band with a mix of some southern rock roots.  Good shit.  And they are from Texas so I gotta love em.
  6. …And They Shall Take Up Serpents by Byzantine – angry thrash metal w/ more riffs than you can shake a stick at.   Another band I can’t really say I like from a per song basis but rather for the atmosphere.  Phil Anselmo anyone?
  7. Bullet in your Head by Made of Hate – thrash metal.  Just fun music.  When you get tired of all the brutality and technicality of day’s death metal, this is more easy going.  Not to say they aren’t technical but they have a bit of space which allows the music to breath.
  8. Planetary Duality by The Faceless – brutal technical death metal at its best.  These guys are on par with Necrophagist, Psycroptic and the like.  Who would have thought such awesome b.t.d.m. would come out of Kansas?
  9. Sumerian Daemons by Septic Flesh – These guys are alot like Augury.  They have the brutal death metal sound down but they also infuse it with sounds of choral and symphonic elements.  They have super fast and they have easy going chug metal too.
  10. At the Soundless Dawn by The Red Sparowes – all instrumental post-rock (who in the hell makes up these names for the genres?)  Anyway they sound on par with bands like Isis, Pelican and 5ive.   Its not about riffs and technicality, its about painting a picture with the music.  If you listen to nothing but metal, you ought to give these guys a listen to broaden your horizons.

I could keep going but I don’t want to burn out doing this.  Plenty of places to find these more obscure bands.  Let me know if you have a hard time finding them.

Quick Review: Chinese Democracy

•April 13, 2009 • 3 Comments

Finally acquired this album.  Let’s get to the meat of it shall we.  As a GnR album this SUCKS!!!!  Let’s face it, GnR was one part Axl and one part Slash/Duff.  Its like having the Roses without the Guns.  The Pie without the Crust.  So minus Slash’s super talented playing, you get mediocre techno-y, NIN, type crap.  Yes there is the occasional good guitar riff and some really cool solos.  But as a GnR album I was disappointed.  I expected that.

Now let’s review this as something other than a GnR album.  Its actually quite good.  This would probably have been better received by metal heads such as myself if it was labeled something like Axl Rose’s Solo Project.  Then digesting the NIN-ish techno crap is a little easier.

Let’s face it, this review is of Axl, not the band that is now GnR.  There are a few complaints I have in general barring any GnR-ish type argument.  Firstly I think Axl overdid the whiney bitch bit a tad much.  “Scraped” is a perfect example of this.   Its as if in the last 15 years he needs to assert himself as a dominant singer again.  So rather than fire off hard hitting lyrics and a great attitude (ala Welcome to the Jungle or Coma), he actually tries to be a little too melodic and too thematic (more along the lines of November Rain, uuggg).  What happens is you get alot of whiney passages where he is TRYING to sing something against a backdrop of music not in his vocabulary.  It clashes and rubs me the wrong way.  Next is Axl trying to do something nobody with a great high range should do: sing low.  Axl has the “you could be mine” low tone that does good so long as its for the most part monotone.  But stick to 3 or 4 notes.  Don’t try to actually sing dude.  It doesn’t work.  Upon first hearing Streets of Dreams I had to start ask if this was a joke.  Was he serious?  Indeed he was.  Not his best work.  He ends up sounding more like a drunk country singer trying to sing to high.  Of course the classic Axl voice is there and it works.

Ok let’s tackle the music now.  If you are expecting a pure rock/metal album, expect to be disappointed.  There are quite a few too-hip-for-you-hop type songs where they have tried to blend styles from elements of hip hop (drums mostly), casino pop (not sure how to describe this genre, just imagine a bunch of British Grifters or go watch Hustle) and some other crap that is just that:  A big mix of crap.

Don’t bother buying this one folks.  Save your good hard earned cash and buy something more relevant than 15 years too late Axl Rose.  Borrow a friend’s CD if you gotta have it.

 
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