Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Essential Readings; 'Fear & Loathing In Las Vegas' by Hunter S. Thompson

Lets talk about some other stuff. Books? Why not, here's one hell of reading experienced! Great book should comes with great cover. This one here is a work of true genius & art savant 'Hunter S. Thompson & Ralph Stedman'. Both became legend due to the released of this timeless work. Ralph Stedman was personally picked by Thompson AKA Dr. Gonzo to illustrates for the cover & inner layout. Suprissingly, this collaboration works really well though!
The book was published in the 70's, yet after a decade later it is still relevant & being published along side the vast selection of books to this day. It still a tempt to just grab it from the bookshelves & peeks few words in it before you end up buying it. What make it interesting-lies in it abnormality of books you've been reading before this one gets your attentions. Thompson or they(most critics) called it 'Gonzo' style of writing. What is 'Gonzo'? Dr. Gonzo - as what he came to conclude is 'then, was about getting at the truth, even if it meant technically lying'!
lets forget all the 'bombastic' words, Dr. Gonzo here wrote down his words like a machine gun being fired at Vietnam's War Field! Painful yet entertaining, some weird stuff isn't it.
Fear & Loathing In Las Vegas (A Savage Journey To The Heart Of American Dreams)embarks a tales of the author & his 300-pound attorney(a samoan) driving through the desert heading to Las Vegas. The creepy side of the tales is they are equip with loads, loads of drugs,enough they can supply it to a group of army. Chaos! Mayhem is what is their brained works during this crazy trip. The american dreams both of them went for searching in Las Vegas was done with 90% high headed! I mean, dead Stoned man! So all the perception about Vietnam's War, the turnaround politics, culture the revolutions, America facing during that era is kinda lunatic the way Thompson look at it. All this insanity of this both drug junkies finally creates this brilliant & outrages memoir! In year 2005 Hunter S. Thompson committed suicides. Dr. gonzo shot himself to fame again. Like his younger days, he continues to shocks fan till the end of his life. Dr. Gonzo! We Salute You!!
'Fear & Loathing In Las Vegas has been made into a major film, directed by Terry Gilliam and starring Johnny Depp'.

Essential Listening; 'The Downward Spiral' by Nine Inch Nails

One of the coolest album cover I've seen so far since Andy Warhol's 'Banana Sleeve' cover for Velvet Underground album. The album genres is electronica/industrial what most rock mag labelled it. This is a serious album. Strictly not for everybody. Only for mature listening who wants a totally different edge of sounds. It's for those who wants to really test their audio system to a certain limits, now this album is worth getting. 'The Downward Spiral' is sort of roller- coster ride when you played it on air. The album offers a sonic sharp edge electronica beat & it will get really slow & quite, to it's another side of dark mysterious gloomy tunes that worth listening at.
Trent Reznor is the Guru behind this one man band 'Nine Inch Nails @ NIN. My fellow friends this is not NIN debut album. Never the less this is the album that boasted Mr. Reznor to his famed & superstardom. Not only that, this album also put him through self tortured of drug abused & his road to recovery (Reznor Quoted in Mojo Mag July 2009). It's a sound of Reznor entering Hell & back I must say. 'The Downward Spiral' is Reznor interpretations of Pink Floyd's 'The Wall' album. it's a progressive kind of album. You can feel the track is connected to one another, from the opening to the end of the album. It's so ahead of it times in various terms, from the sound or even the album graphics & packaging. In my opinion nobody(artist in same genre) has ever come this excellent as Reznor. The sound of the album is excellent! Reznor's drum machine, synth, digital recording & all the instrument featured in this album can be heard clearly especially if you using a noised cancelation ear or headphones. Of coursed, it really sounds superb on your Hi-Fi systems!
Without a doubt it's a' 5 star!!' rating from me. A classics! That one should have & keep it, as one of treasured collection. The best track in the album is 'Hurt', NIN most noticeable song, which also was covered by Johnny Cash in his full acoustic album 'American Recordings iv' produced by 'Rick Rubin'. Another track that should not be missed is 'Closer'. With it explicit lyrics it is another definite killer tunes. NIN-'The Downward Spiral has been on my Ipod listed for the past 4 years & that's a fact! Before I end up this review here's a piece of my advised to all my dear readers out there. Please make a judgement towards an album after playing it few times. Some great tunes won't really shine if we don't buffed it a few times. Here's one good exampled 'The Wall' by Pink Floyd- I bet you guys agreed with me!

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Essential Listening; The Life Aquatic Studio Sessions Featuring Seu Jorge

Firstly I would like thank to Mr. Sting for giving me a chance to share some of my interest in various genre of music, film, books or anything related to arts. Today I would like to introduce another rare breed of singer whom is apart of my collection which is really good in what they doing. The saddest part of it you won't find this album easily in a music store. Not to worry, with the power of the internet nothing is impossible. There's always a way to buy it online with a hell of a good price!
Seu Jorge's Studio sessions is actually a partial soundtrack album from the movie
'The Life Aquatic' directed by Wes Anderson (Darjeeling limited). In this film Sue Jorge was a part of the cast-acted as one of Zissou's team members. he don't have a lot of lines, but every end chapter of the movie he will sang a short tunes before entering the next plot. Armed with only an acoustic guitar & gutsy voiced Sue strumming,plucking and picking his way through beautifully. The album is a cover album that featured most of David Bowie best song from his Ziggy Stardust Era(Glam Rock in the 70's). Yes it's a cover album, but all bowie's songs was sang by Sue in Portuguese, since he is a brazilian born singer & actor. the end result, a copy that sounded so original & it listening to bowie's tunes will never be the same again. what is so catchy about Sue's voice, is it filled with emotions. he really let the his gutsy vocal out. If you listen to Bowie's his more carefully singing the tunes and holding his pitching, & only let it out at a certain peak of the song.
Track Listing:-
  1. Rebel Rebel
  2. Life On Mars
  3. O Astronauta De Marmore
  4. Ziggy Stardust
  5. Lady Stardust
  6. Changes
  7. Oh! You Pretty Things
  8. Rock N' Roll Suicide
  9. Suffragatte City
  10. Five Years
  11. Queen Bitch
  12. When I Live My Dream
  13. Quicksand
  14. Team Zissou
What make this album so great is Seu succesfully makes it sounds so fresh like a brand new song written in this decade. 'Life Aquatic' made me went to the music store and starts collecting somes Bowie's early & later works after spinning 'Life Aquatic' on stereo for days. My killer track will be Rock N' Roll Suicide, Ziggy Stardust, Lady Stardust, When I Live My Dream & Five Years. As I wrote earlier it filled with emotions,which is good for an album that don't speaks the universal language. The production is great since it is a studio album & a partial OST for a film with an inmese B
budgets. The sound of the acoustic guitar is so clear even you played it using an Ipod or a decent systems (example micro Hi-Fi or standard car audio. The album is so minimal,with just a guitar & Seu's voice, yet it still sounded like a live sessions with a top notch recording. Highly recommended for individual whose into acoustic vibe such as Dylan, Cash, or Gypsy Kings. Best to be played early in the morning on the weekend when you just about to started your beautiful day or during a coffee & tea sessions with friends or family. An absolute 'Starbucks' atmosphere. It's a 4/5 star rating for Seu Jorge; Life Aquatic Studio Sessions. before i end up my reviews here's a piece of remark of David Bowie remark towards this album that was printed inside the album sleeve cover
"Had Seu Jorge not recorded my songs acoustically in Portuguese, i would never have heard this new level of beauty which has imbued them with'
-David Bowie-

Friday, June 12, 2009

Welcome Moloko...

Moloko is a new contributor in life is a journey blog. He is friend of mine which has a great taste of music and movies!. So, watch out for movie review as well in the future but I believe he's more keen on yesteryears music...I mean real music.

Welcome my friend!

Essential Listening; 'G R A C E' by Jeff Buckley

'Grace' the album is the first and the last complete studio album from Jeff Buckley. He is one of my personal favorite singer (a kind of hero), songwriter, musician, artist that i truly admired. Grace the album was a creation of excessive training, jamming and performing in pubs & clubs in New York City, which what Jeff did before he end up in a small cozy placed called Sin-e. It is here Jeff began to create his own sound and style. The year was 1993 when the album 'Grace' was made. It's a year of grunge explosion or i may call it a year of Nirvana. Most everybody at that time teens or adult are hooked to the sound of Kurt Cobain. Meanwhile, this rising star had just finish this album that he wanted to sound like Jeff Buckley himself. it's not a grunge album nor a rock album, but it does fell into alternative genre. I can agree with that, but not forgetting it does carry the one & only trademark of Jeff Buckley. It has this balanced of joy and a hidden sadness from the track list of this album. 'Grace has it riff and mellow that just balanced enough in creating a great album such as this.
'GRACE' Track List:
  1. Mojo Pin
  2. G r a ce
  3. Last Goodbye
  4. Lilac Wine
  5. So Real
  6. Hal lel uja h
  7. Lover, You Should Come Over
  8. Corpus Christi Carol
  9. Eternal Life
  10. Dream Brother
  11. Forget Her
The opening track of the album will give listener a catchy promising that this album will sound great. Mojo Pin starts with Jeff hymn from the background before bursting with this number. The song that really shakes & showed an edgier side of Jeff is the killer song's 'Grace', Mojo Pin, Dream Brother & Eternal Life, But the true gem here is, 'Grace' itself. The way this song was written by Jeff himself is kinda' a Dee ja vu. Jeff seems to know that he might not live long enough to glorify his success. Grace talks about ones who is felt of dying & not worrying it, he bravely saying goodbye to the closest friends, praising god & welcoming him to come & take him back gracefully. Believe it or not, dear friend this metaphor did really happened to our dear Jeff whereby he was drowned in Mississippi-river on may 29 1997 & his body was only to be found on June 4, 1997. He was at his peak and a legend in-make. Sadly it never happened, but with all this mainstreams and loyal fan that kept him alive in his music until today.
Now the true killer songs on this album lies in the melancholy tunes such as Lover, you should come over, So Real, Forget Her, Corpus Christi Carol,and a Leonard Cohen cover Hallelujah, & the not so melancholy 'Last Goodbye'. The song was featured in Cameron Crowe's Version of ' Vanilla Sky' starred by Tom Cruise & Penelope Cruz. Every time when i listened to 'Last Goodbye' it sort of bringing this joyful feeling, but this song is actually talks about biting farewell to your loves ones. the strength of the album is a result from Jeff Unique voices & his ability as a guitar player. His voices is really one of a kind & can be mimic easily. hearing his voice sometimes make me wonder this is a voice of angel & because of that god wont let him stay long with us because we might be astonished by him so much. You will not get bored with his style of singing caused his a great singer gifted with this tremendous voice. The lyrics and the tunes floats so well that you don't realized that after first times listening to the album that you already reach the last number on the album.

My personal favorite will be Hall elu jah, Last Goodbye, Lover,you should come Over, Grace and Lilac Wine. The song was also sang by Katie Melua in her debut album. Grace truly deserved a 5 star classics rating from me after repeats listening. Its an album that ones won't really get tired playing it on a stereo system on and on, & that i promised you.
Jeff Buckley band actually supported by Mick Grondahl; Bass, Matt Johnson; Drums And Micheal Tighe; Guitar. The sound quality of this album is superb. another product Form Sony Colombia Records. It's also comes with interactive track tittle notification. 'Grace' was produced, engineered & mix by Andy Wallace and Jeff himself wants this album to be absolute perfect & in my personal point of view, he just did it in his on way. The album sound rich and when start to kicking with harder tunes it strength just right to rock listener without letting you to turn down a volume a little bit when it get really louder on a certain track. It is worth men's every penny to buy this album without considering what er you a blues man or a jazz man or a rockers, it just sheer beauty that everyone should listen &enjoy to this masterpiece created by this hero of mine 'Jeff Buckley'.
5 stars!!! Sheer Beauty with evergreen Quality! Magnifique & Astounding! Ladies & Gentlemen now go & grab yourselves one of this. Highly Recommended for everybody!

Tuesday, June 9, 2009


No, it's not about the acoustic version of I'll be or I couldn't ask for more, the hit songs of the album. This is one of my favorite pop rock album that produces high degree of musicality of a composer and a singer. Great recording with thundering drumming and bass lines. Edwin McCain is not a bassist, he's a singer and his heavy/husky voice are just great. Messenger was his 3rd released album (1999). For me the highlight of this album beside McCain's voice is every bass notes and sounds played by Scott Bannevich. His bass sound really clean, well resonates and these is how should a bass sound in a song. His bass lines was outstanding, solid and strong, keep the song's groove with a bit naughty improvisation.

In sign on the door, the opening drumming follow by Mr Bannevich's 5 strings bass was very prominent. Every low notes was audible with great clarity and this will put your speakers to a real test of producing quality low notes.

This album is great for an introduction to Edwin McCain's music and by far the best by Mr. McCain.