Raining on a Metal Floor

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There was a place in the late twentieth century where the hover vessels had become rusted from a lack of use. They laid scattered about and broken upon the man-made floor, a sea of metal sheets with diamond rivets for rubber soles to grip. The city surrounding these cracked, reddened vessels was populated by towers and skyscrapers, each with dark hollows and missing corners. Rubble was everywhere.

Rain fell constantly from an eerie orange glow. Even the sunshine seemed saddened by the passing of time.

When they landed after only two years of being away, their 1980’s was gone.

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Red Box Fail

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“Hey, wanna rent that movie Gone Girl?”

“Sure.”

And that’s what we did while picking up some groceries. Before we swipe our card, the Red Box kiosk asks us, “Would you like to add a game for free?”

So we decided to add a free game as well.¬† We went with¬†The Evil Within for no apparent reason. Worst case scenario: we don’t play a free game, no worries.

And then this happened:

Feels weird.

Feels weird.

I opened it because it was oddly… paperish:

Yeah. It's paper.

Yeah. It’s paper.

I held it for no apparent reason but to make sure I hadn’t gone insane.

I guess this really is The Evil Within

Oh, the irony of an object called The Evil Within.

Not much needed to be said here. By rules of logic, I’m assuming some teenager (I seriously hope this wasn’t the doing of an adult) took their parent’s credit card, and came up with this fantastic idea, without realizing their credit card number can be traced. In any case, this brightened my day.

People.

Just people.

Life’s on Loop

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Like five hungry children to one biscuit, nothing is personal.

They’re children who are hungry, the idea of sharing isn’t even in the ballpark.

They fight hard, some harder than others. Perhaps one sits back and, conniving, decides to attack the best of them while they’re winded.

The opposition doesn’t matter. The end result does. The biscuit.

In the end, one child grabs the last biscuit and eats it. Some would say that the one with the biscuit was obviously the best of them, and that they won.

That child didn’t win. They got the biscuit.

The difference is in the context.

Life’s on loop.

FRPUA #7: Voyager – V

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6:48 a.m., the twentieth of August, 2014.

I came across this album by Voyager, called V.

Apparently it’s progressive metal. I haven’t heard it yet, so that’s all I can go off of.

Let’s find out what this thing is.

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7:46 a.m., same day.

Voyager. V. The album was a nice little ride, sounded like futuristic metal from a space movie. Clean vocals, definitely not difficult to understand what the singer was singing. The album had some heavy riffs and a lot of high-pitched melodies. Again, very spacey.

So that’s all I really have to say about this album. The novelty wore off pretty quickly, and though some tracks gripped me more than others, overall, it was, as I said, a nice little ride. Nothing too big, but nice.

Not sure what I’ll listen to next, but as long as it’s something I haven’t heard before, then it’s all the criteria I need.

What about you? Have you heard of Voyager? What do you think? Any suggestions for future albums? Famous, infamous, underground… if I haven’t heard it, I’ll give it a listen.

Until next time…

FRPUA #6: Pallbearer – Foundations of Burden

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7:20 a.m.

Alright, so Pallbearer. I’ve heard their first album, Sorrow and Extinction, and it’s one of my favorite albums of the past ten years. It was unique enough with its sound, told a pretty cosmic (and yet uncanny) tale of aging and death (or… sorrow and extinction). It was a fresh sound, with beautiful riffs.

Now their second album, Foundations of Burden is finally released. I haven’t heard any of the demos, so here we go, fresh and untainted. Pretty excited.

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8:32 a.m., same day.

Foundations of Burden was a nice ride. It definitely sounded like Pallbearer, a continuation of their previous debut album, and different enough to sound new. This is one I’ll definitely be purchasing to support the band, and hopefully they’ll continue to grow.

As for the genre, I know it’s considered metal… doom metal to be precise, but I can’t help but think of Pallbearer as something other than doom. I understand the lyrical content and themes of their first two albums have a lot to do with doom, but they sound so positive and empowering, almost as if, sure, death is inevitable, but the journey after death is a reflective time for the departed. Relaxing, almost.

It’s rock. It’s doom. It’s empowering. I honestly can’t really categorize them, and I don’t think it’s necessary. Take a listen for yourself. Sorrow and Extinction and now Foundations of Burden.

What about you? Have you heard of them? Or actually heard their music? Will you be checking them out? And what about suggestions? Leave any you like, whether it be famous, infamous, or otherwise underground. If I haven’t heard the album, I’ll check it out.

Until next time…

FRPUA #5: Outkast – Aquemini

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So… 7:43 a.m. Good morning.

Outkast. Aquemini. They’re a well-known group. And this is a well-known album. However, I’ve never heard it myself… so… Let’s get started.

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9:00 a.m.

Catchy. Catchy. Funk and fun. I’d give this one multiple listens.

Outkast, Aquemini (1998). If you haven’t heard it, I’d suggest taking the hour+ to experience it. Speaking of hour+, I really enjoyed the music for as long as the album was. Most albums I tend to enjoy are a little less than one hour, whereas those that reach further beyond the sixty minute mark tend to drone out of focus. This one was fine for the length. No complaints, plenty of praise. Great time.

Any suggestions? Famous, infamous, underground. If I haven’t heard it previously, I’ll give it a listen. Doesn’t matter what genre.

Have a great time being alive, and until next time…

 

FRPUA #4: Baby Grandmothers – Baby Grandmothers

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It is… 8:15 a.m., on Wednesday, August 13th, and today’s First Response is:

Baby Grandmothers, a self-titled album from… Baby Grandmothers.

Never heard it before now, and now it shall begin.

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9:15 a.m., same day.

Alright, Baby Grandmothers, psychedelic funk to the core. Good stuff, no complaints, first of the First Responses that I would actually listen to again for no other reason than I dug it.

There’s not much more to say other than check it out for yourself if you have not already.

Have suggestions? Famous, infamous, or otherwise underground, feel free. And if I haven’t heard it previously, I will be sure to try and check it out.

Until next time…

FRPUA #3: Album Leaf – In a Safe Place

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It’s 6:35 a.m., and it’s time for another new listen.

Today, it’s an album by Album Leaf, entitled In a Safe Place.

It was suggested to me, and since I’ve never heard it before, it fits the criteria.

Let’s get started.

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7:28 a.m. End.

So… I guess this is relevant because it’s what I found myself thinking about while listening to this album, but… Robin Williams passed away.

I heard the night before that Robin Williams passed, and though I had plenty of thoughts, I didn’t focus on any of them. In fact, I wasn’t thinking about it before this album began, and I didn’t know what to expect because I’ve never heard of Album Leaf at all. But once the music began, and as the album progressed, I found myself thinking of goodbyes. I’m sure the association has more to do with timing than anything else, but…

It felt peaceful and sad, like the end of pain, the pain of loss. Is it because the album is entitled In a Safe Place? Is that what I hope happens after death?

Or is it because of the music? Perhaps if the music was super hardcore crazy death-metal, I’d be thinking that the afterlife is full of supernatural entities playing cosmic ping-pong with tattoos made from the stars.

I don’t know. All I know is, while I was listening to this album today, I was thinking about Robin Williams, and how the last time I saw him on-screen it was during an episode of Louie, and in the episode, Louie and Robin meet after a funeral and they talk about it. Robin says something along the lines of, “Do me a favor? Go to mine?”

And Louie responds with an awkward, “Yeah. Mine too… I mean, if I go first.”

Anyhow, the music was beautiful, struck a ton of emotion (again, I don’t know for sure if it’s the timing or if the music was just that powerful), and humans created it. I’m glad I checked it out. It was the first time I listened to anything from Album Leaf.

In any case… Let me know of any suggestions if you have any. It doesn’t matter if it’s a famous album, an infamous album, or an underground album. It doesn’t even matter what genre! If I haven’t heard the album before and I can find it, I’ll give it a listen. It’s the only criteria.

FRPUA #2: Shibayan Records – Magico Catastrofe

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6:27 a.m., August 11th, 2014.

A good friend of mine suggested I listen to the album Shibayan Records – Magico Catastrofe. Again, just like FRPUA#1, this is an album I haven’t previously listened to, nor have I heard of it. In this case, I don’t even know if this is a group, a band, singular artist, or even the year the music was produced. I know nothing! Fantastic. That’s what I’m going for.

Let’s dive right on in and experience this thing naked.

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Alright. It’s 7:32 a.m., and the music just stopped. The summary of my first response:

It sounded to me like pop and retro video game music with Japanese singing. Upbeat, made me want to move (and I did bob my head to the beat as well as dance while making lunch for later). Catchy tunes. Some of the songs went on for a while, but I suppose when played in a dance setting, people would appreciate it.

Sometimes the music reminded me of 80’s montage scenes from underdog films, as if the protagonist had already gotten her/his butt kicked and decided to train for a few months. Since I couldn’t understand the lyrics, I can only assume the singer(s) were saying things like, “I’m never gonna give up, never gonna give up… baby.” Maybe. Probably not.

But yeah!!! Shibayan Records- Magico Catastrofe, not bad at all. Not my personal taste, but what does my personal taste have to do with this segment? Nothing! Good time, unexpected, and heard something new. No complaints.

Have any suggestions? Feel free. If I can find what you suggest, and it’s something I’ve never heard before, whether it be famous, infamous, or underground in any genre, then I’m bound to hear it sometime.

Until next time…

FRPUA #1: Airbag – All Rights Removed

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So I was going to edit some of my fiction when I decided that I’d like to write something non-fiction instead. I didn’t have any ideas until I had one (that’s usually how it works). So here it is… the first of perhaps many to come of… well, thoughts after listening to albums that I’ve never listened to before.

Right now I’ll be listening to what appears to be a band called Airbag. The album: All Rights Removed (2011). At this point, I know nothing about it other than the title, the band name, and the year. I’ve never even heard of the band. I’ll write about the experience after I listen to the album in its entirety. 5:21 p.m., August 10th, 2014.

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6:11 p.m., same day.

After listening to the entire album… in its entirety… here are my thoughts:

Soothing music. It reminded me of that 70’s band, China Crisis a little bit, as well as David Sylvian. Not vocally, but instrumentally. The production value was absolutely fine. There were no achy scratches, no muffled vocals, no ear-piercing pitches of the guitar work. Everything was fine.

I don’t know if I’ll ever itch to listen to this particular album again, but that has nothing to do with its quality as much as it does with my personal taste in music. How to describe this music in terms of genre? I won’t. I don’t think I can, to be honest, but I don’t think I’ll be describing these albums in terms of genre at all. If you’re curious, I would suggest you check them out (you can probably find the albums I’ll be listening to on Youtube, and if you like it, I would suggest purchasing a copy–either physically or digitally–for your personal enjoyment/library).

And this concludes the first of whatever these are… first listens? First responses? This one was short, but maybe I’ll end up writing a whole lot more if I come across something that strikes me a little harder. As for Airbags All Rights Removed, I don’t feel much towards it. Like I said, soothing. Maybe something to paint or sketch to.

Until next time…