Monday, December 23, 2002

Music Review

KMFDM - Attak

I just got this album last week, purchased with a gift card, though after some research I discovered that buying this album wouldn't have broke my RIAA boycott. This album was released by Metropolis Records. They are not on the RIAA member list. They also support one of my favorite net-radio stations, Digital Gun Fire by allowing them to play tracks from their artists royalty free! Good going guys!

Anyway, back to my review of Attak. Lets just say its been in my car since I bought it and I have barely listened to anything but it, while in my car. It's not all great, but all in all it's a very good album. It would be well worth purchasing, gift card or not.

A little history, KMFDM has been around nearly 20 years. Their name is actually an acronym of: "Kein Mehrheit Für Die Mitleid", loosely translated, from German, it means, "No Compassion for the Masses." In other words, they don't much care for people who act like sheep and follow trends, leaders and other things mindlessly. This is a common theme in many of their songs too. One lyric, for instance, says, "Do we sit in the saddle or are we just cattle?" I think that says it all.

  1. Attak/Reload - My second favorite song on the CD. It has strong crunching guitars and a nice danceable beat. The lyrics of the whole album are a mix of male (many by Sascha Konietzko, who has a Ramstein like growl) and female (Lucia Cifarelli). In this one Sascha is a backup singer to Lucia who lends some softness to the music. Not soft as in pop, but soft as in sexy and approachable. Industrial music is notorious for being a bit abrasive. And don't think for a moment just because Lucia is a woman that her singing is in any way less “Industrial”. This song is a great hard rocking dance song with lyrics that complement the sound well.
  2. Skurk – Not a great song, but pretty decent. It's very much like many of KMFDMs older songs. Still good, but not unique. Some of the lyrics hit home pretty sharp though. I won't go into details, but “I bleed forever and not a thing you do can comfort me,” touches on a heavy insecurity of mine.
  3. Dirty – Good guttural lyrics and rocking dance beats. Again this is classic KMFDM sound. Listening to the song I thought the song was about being sexually dirty, but after I read the lyrics I think its actually about fighting to get off Heroin. I may be wrong. KMFDM has always been pretty positive in their lyrics. I think here they say, “Hey drugs will mess you up and kill you.” Ok so that doesn't sound so “positive” but at least it says there are consequences for drug use.
  4. Urban Monkey Warfare – Frankly I haven't a clue what the message is in this one, but it's a good one. I think i like it mostly because of the MONKEY!! There is a mention of code cracking and hacking, but there isn't enough evidence to support the claim that this is a hacker song.
  5. Save Me – Lyrically this song is quite different. I think that Tim Skold is the singer on this one and lets Sascha take backup. It has a sad passion not unlike Linkin Park or Staind. “I travel this road on my own now, there's no way you could understand.” Musically it's still KMFDM but with a darker Goth feel to it. This song is growing me on me, especially after really listening to the lyrics.
  6. Yohoho – I'll be honest. I found the premise of this song dumb and always skip over it. It's like something I'd expect to hear from Lords of Acid, but at least they'd make it a bit more fun.
  7. Superhero – My favorite song on the album by far. I read one review that said this song was pop. Oh come on man. This isn't Britney Spears! Lucia again takes over the lyrics and really makes this a fun, sexy rocking song. It's a bit heavy on the layers, but it works. What I mean about layers is that there is a lot of sound layering. Many sounds coming from every where swirling around. It could very easily have become chaos, but Sascha maintained control. This is one of those songs you wanna turn up loud, drive fast to singing along. Lucia shows off her ability to have local range and yell as well.
  8. Sturm & Drang – KMFDM titled their 2002 tour on this song and I think it was appropriate. This is what I'd consider Arena Industrial. It's just a good rallying song. Perfect for getting a concert up and churning. Half the lyrics are in German so I'm not 100% sure of the meaning, but given that this is KMFDM, I'm sure they are saying, “Be more than you are.” Heavy Industrial Rock Anthem.
  9. Preach/Pervert – Not bad, but nothing special. I could live without this one, along with Yohoho. Oh well.
  10. Risen – This is the song I heard on Digital Gun Fire that made my ears perk up and say, “Hey, I need to check these guys out again.” My last KMFDM album was back in 1996. I was curious what they had come up with. I'm not disappointed at all. I've heard this called an Industrial rap song. I can't help but laugh at that. It's nothing even remotely close to rap music. It has a message, but it doesn't really take itself too seriously. You can sing along with it. Sascha and Skold play vocal tug of war. This is the only thing I can think that guy who said it was rap was referencing. The way they go back and forth is reminiscent of RUN DMC or Beastie Boys. Still not rap. The lyrics are not too easy to understand sometimes though. “The eagle has landed” is actually, “The ego has landed” and one that I had to listen to a few times, sounded like, “Clash of the Titans”, when in fact it is, “Metal Detectors”. Yea seems difficult to believe that I'd get clash of the titans from metal detectors, but hey, remember English is a second language for these guys!
  11. Sleep - An interesting song that is part KMFDM but part not. I'm not saying this is a bad thing though. I really like the song. Another female vocalist, Dorona Alberti sings this one and she has a very powerful voice. This is a definite music genre breaker. It crosses a few boundaries. It's many and none of them at the same time.

My final thoughts, KMFDM brought enough of their identity across to this album so it was easily picked back up by fans, even those who haven't listened to them in 6 or 7 years. I have to respect that. Yet they also are trying new and quite successful branches. Constantly stretching the envelope. Any good electronic artist will do that. Sitting still in these genres is a good way to become yesterdays news. KMFDM on the other hand is probably one of the top five better known Industrial groups in the US. I would rank Nine Inch Nails and Ministry above them and other old school Industrial listeners would list Kraftwurk & Nitzer Ebb as well.

I give KMFDM – Attak a 5 out of 5 ranking. If you like heavy rock, strong beats and are wanting to give Industrial a taste, this would be a safe album.

Help with Electronic music

i'm a BIG fan of electronic music in most of its variations. However when someone asks what kinda music is this CD or that one. It's hard tell them, "Oh that's Hard House," or "Oh that's Industrial," if they don't know what those genre terms mean.

Well I found a website to help out. An Electronic Music Publishing & Licensing company in the UK called Raw42 has created a pretty comprehensive list of the genres and what they mean. Some break down and give groups/artists that would qualify in those branches. Unfortunatly others are sparse at best.

The worst part is I can name you a few groups off the top of my head that span a number of those specialized genres. Because of this I typically don't break groups down that far. They consider KMFDM Industrial Dance, while I'd say it's more Industrial Rock. Well the key is that it's Industrial, stick with the simple titles I say. The easiest genres, in my opinion, to recognize are Industrial, Trance, House, Trip Hop and Drum & Bass. Happy Hardcore and Gabber are also VERY distinctive, but not very popular. You're more likely to hear Happy Hardcore at a Rave than any place else. Gabber, started in Amsterdam, hasn't traveled too far from there.

Click here and read for yourself, if you are interested. You'll be surprised at the history. Electronic music is a rich and diverse world. It's reaching slowly but surely into the mainstream. Eminem may think no body listens to Techno, but wait to see what happens when people get tired of the Top40. Everyone reaches a point in their lives when they ask, "Is that all there is?" This can apply to a variety of things, but many people, especially in college, learn there are bigger and better things that Top40.


Well I got both the comments and log working very quickly. The problems we small. Thankfully. So now my site is back up at 100%. Oh goodie, now you all will be expecting me to post stuff! LOL

Down and Back Up Again

I'm sure some of you noticed my site was down for a few days. I had to reformat and rebuild my computer Thursday morning. I was back up and running Thursday afternoon, but was much too busy to setup the website. Same went for Friday. Saturday and Sunday I just didn't feel like messing with it. LOL But it's back up and running now.

There are a couple things I still have to fix.

1. The comments won't work properly,

2. My stats page is not working yet.

I'll work on them today still. I may blog some more too. I've not desided yet. I'm feeling fickle today. :þ

Thursday, December 19, 2002

Yea yea

I know I know, I've still not written my reviews. I'll get to it. :P

Wednesday, December 18, 2002

Blog Links Fixed

I finally got Joanies link updated. I also removed the True Porn Clerk Stories link. The woman who was writing that got a new job and stopped that column. Oh well.

Tuesday, December 17, 2002

Bad Blogger

I've been bad at updating things again. Sorry.

I saw Star Trek - Nemisis Saturday night. I'll write a review for that. I also got a new CD, KMFDM - Attak (no i didn't mispell that). I'll review that as well.

What am I doing now? I'm trying to work! Sheesh, let me get back at it! LOL

Monday, December 09, 2002

Top Ten

Joni listed her top 10 search terms on her site, so I thought I'd steal the idea. *grin*

62: fire in photoshop

51: screen destroyer

42: windvr2

31: making fire in photoshop

31: poser gallery

30: poser art

22: flame artwork

19: deathdealer

16: photoshop fire

15: poser images

Seems my visitors are pyros with a taste for death and destruction and poser art (which typically includes naked women).

Movie Review - Queen of the Damned

I really enjoyed this movie.

At first I was disappointed that Tom Cruise was not playing The Vampire Lestat, as he did in the movie, Interview with a Vampire. I thought he was a very good vampire. Wicked and charming. However I don't think the Lestat he created would have fit this movie as well. I believe this movie is based on another Anne Rice book, as Interview with a Vampire was, so there was a connection, but it was fragmentary. They really didn't reference Interview at all, so you could see this movie without the other. Actually it would probably be better if you haven't seen Interview first.

What I mean is that this movie is so very different. It's Rock and Roll Goth. It's the Crow with a little dark romanticisim and a lot of fantasy.

It is a little bloody here and there, these are vampires after all, but it's not gory. The story bounces a little, but keeps on track well.

My complaint, hey you can't have a good review without one, is about character development. The heroin in the movie gets a good amount of development, but poor Lestat is left unclear. Perhaps this was done on purpose, but you don't really get a clear understanding of his motives ever. They seem to swing back and forth from selfish and evil to loyal and strong. I can't say more without giving away important aspects of the movie.

The acting was good all the way around. There was a little uncertainty whether the story made the characters confused at certain times or if the actors didn't portray the right emotions. But that's just nit-picking.

The end of the movie is amazing. It's very simple but if you have a true love, some one who you want to spend eternity with, you'll understand exactly what I mean.

Oh, one last thing. This is not a scary movie at all. There are no moments to make a person jump or creepy scenes. It's the vampire romance that has captivated people for the last 100 years or so.

Out of 5, I give Queen of the Damned a 4.

Movie Review - Scorpion King

I'll upfront say, this is a good action movie. That said you have to let go and just enjoy it. There are things in this movie that simply don't make sence from a historical sense.

The story is pre-pyramids, this places it in the Copper-Age. Yet in the movie they are fighting with steel/iron swords. Ok ok, seems a petty complaint until you realize that this would be like M-16 machine guns during the revolutionary war.

The acting wasn't Oscar quality, but it was adequate. The Amazons and Sorceress were nice eye candy for the guys. The ladies will like "The Rock" I guess. He leaves his "Peoples' Eye" out of the movie, thankfully. I think that trademark would have dropped the whole movie down a notch.

If you can leave those things behind and just enjoy the action it will be a fun movie. It's along the lines of a Conan movie. If you are expecting any reference to the Mummy movies, that this spun off from, you'll be sadly disappointed. This movie does not have the special effects the two Mummy movies had, but the effects they do have were good.

The kids are going to be pretty safe too. There is violence of course, but no blood. The director very smartly left that out. The language was clean as well. There are a couple of near nude scenes with the Sorceress, but you don't see anything more than a lot of thigh. All the "goodies" are covered at all times. It's on par with the older Bond movies. It's rated PG-13, but I think an 8 or 9 year old would be ok. Hell I saw Conan and Red Sonya before I was a teen and I turned out ok. (ok ok that could be questioned. LOL)

Out of 5, I give Scorpion King a 2 1/2.


Sorry for the lack of posts lately. I'll try to get back into the swing of things this week. I watched a couple movies Friday night that I want to review. I had some thoughts about education and teaching too. I have a few thoughts about this impending war with Iraq too, but I'm not sure if I have enough info to really comment on it.

Tuesday, December 03, 2002

Post Pie

Well the pie was good, but wasn't a big hit. The added cranberries made it too tart. I think next time I'll leave them out and just make a regular apple pie. The strawberry thingie wasn't bad, but I realized the morning of Thanksgiving that I totally forgot to add sugar!

As for the cranberry sauce, I still have 90% of it. Anyone want some?? I think I'll try something else next year and leave the cranberries to the people who put it in a can! LOL