Macklemore Concert in Des Moines, IA!

Macklemore Concert!

Macklemore was amazing in Des Moines, Iowa on October 30th!

I am not the biggest fan of pop music nowadays, but I have a lot of respect for Macklemore as he is truly a self made man. And an amazing performer. He stunned the crowd with an hour and a half set where his two biggest hits “Thrift Shop” and “Can’t Hold Us” would be played twice. Both times they had a different spin added to them to keep the performance fresh.

New Captain America: The Winter Soldier Trailer

Coming off of The Avengers, Marvel and other super hero movies are HOTTER than ever. The Avengers was a huge success. The film hit the billion dollar mark worldwide in just 19 days. One of the most oldest franchises that has been a part of the Avengers is Captain America. The Captain even made an cameo in the new Thor movie. And his next movie looks spectacular.

As a kid, I loved him and the 90’s film, but have found they don’t hold up all that well. With that being said, The Winter Soldier looks really interesting. See the goose-bump giving trailer below!


RIP Lou Reed

I definitely didn’t listen to enough of his music, but there is a famous quote about the late founder and famed front man of The Velvet Underground, “with one listen to his music, you have a desire to become a musician.”

One of my favorite songs by The Velvet Underground is “Pale Blue Eyes”. With just this song alone, a film with any sort of romantic relationship can go from “good” to “great”. Reed was a master of his craft and inspiration for a generation of musicians.

Although no cause of death has been announced, the musician from New York City had a liver transplant in May of 2013. Reed was 71 when he passed away in New York City, Sunday, October 27th.

Enjoy this phenomenal song:


The Future Belongs to Radiohead

The pay-what-you-like concept is something that consumer industries stray far away from. This isn’t a secret, but every once and a while staunch individuals come along and change everything. Their goal is to change the meta-game of the industry and become a driving force combating the vile side of the said industry. The artist and record label relationship. Artists get a significantly low amount of money for each record they sell. Radiohead is the staunch group of individuals I am talking about. They didn’t exactly do it before anyone else, but they are the first big-name band to do it and they did it on their own. The band is the future of the music industry, as far as Rolling Stone is concerned. Radiohead finished their contractual obligations with their ex-major label, EMI, with the release of Hail to the Thief in 2004. Afterwards, Thom Yorke, the lead singer for Radiohead, developed disgust with the record industry and how everything operates. In an interview for Rolling Stone, Yorke was quoted saying: “If I die tomorrow, I’ll be happy that we didn’t carry on working within this huge industry that I don’t feel any connection with.”

The band had their time working with a major record label, and they weren’t really into it. Radiohead released their album, In Rainbows as a digital release via their site in October 2007. The band would have posted it for free, but realized it would have cost them a fortune just to pay for the bandwidth of seeding the album to anxious fans. So, they did the next best thing and told the Internet that they can pay what they like for the album. This, of course, didn’t mean anything to most people since it was recorded that only two out of every five paid anything at all. After it was all said and done, the band didn’t release much data regarding the success of the pay-what-you-like scheme, but with what was released, it was figured that Radiohead netted an average of about $2.26 for each album downloaded. To the naked eye, this would most definitely be considered a failure since most downloaded albums sell for $9.99, but one thing must be pointed out: Radiohead sold these on their own, reportedly 1.2 million albums on their own. And that was just on the first day of availability. They didn’t have a record label gobbling up all the money for this manager or that managing fee; they had just themselves to worry about. So, the album netted the band more than they would have by releasing it via a major label.

Radiohead may have made a profit on the album, In Rainbows, but the fact that over half of the users didn’t pay anything at all was somewhat alarming to me. I remember when the news rang in that my favorite band of all time was releasing another album. I quickly hopped on my laptop and downloaded it paying only $5.00. At the time, I was seventeen and stole pretty much all the music I downloaded. I didn’t find it as a big deal and that is probably attributed with my biasness towards Radiohead. I felt and still do feel like they are better than everyone else and should be rewarded handsomely. If I did illegally download any of their material, I’d get the same feeling in the pit of my stomach that I would if I cheated on my girlfriend; a sense of dismay within myself. So, out of shear respect for the band, I paid for their album (and later bought a physical copy and a vinyl record). The album was on torrent sites nearly instantly, but I remember specifically going to these sites and happily seeing it having a lot less seeders and leechers than most torrents of this magnitude of a media bump. I think this is because mostly everyone was downloading it off their website because they knew they could do so for free. What a feat. Radiohead single handedly struck a chord not only with the music industry, but the torrenting and illegal downloading industry. And thanks to Napster, that is an industry.

Can bands advertise themselves and bare all the costs of doing so? In short, yes, and Radiohead has proven that. We are in the Internet age, making it possible for knowledge and information to be spread like wildfire. Radiohead admits that they wanted to use this as a marketing tool for their physical release of the album months later, but they were astonished at just how much the media picked up on it. Jonny Greenwood was cited saying in the Rolling Stone’s interview: “I really thought it would be a splash in a little pond, and I was surprised at how much the media picked up on it. Unlike a lot of Radiohead stuff, this idea really was boredom-driven. Just about avoiding the old.” The band did succeed in this when their physical album was released in January 2008. It debuted at number one in the US and the UK. Their first US and their fifth UK number one chart spot. Using their clout and past success, Radiohead has changed the industry. Inspiring bands such as Nine Inch Nails to attempt the same concept.

Where does the music industry go from here? Well, that was 2007-2008 and the Internet. The driving force behind this is a fast-moving beast. Radiohead announced their eighth album, The King Of Limbs, only one week before they released it via digital download and physical pre-order on their site. The band didn’t exercise the pay-what-you-like concept, though. Instead, they are attempting to change the industry once again with “the world’s first newspaper album”. What is this? Well, it is not entirely explained, at least not just yet. The newspaper album is up for pre-order on Radiohead’s and the details that are given explain it as an album that will include two 10” vinyl’s, many large sheets of artwork including 625 little pieces of artwork with a oxo-degradable plastic sheet to hold it all together, and a compact disc. Radiohead actually won a Grammy for their packaging of the physical release of In Rainbows. This is taking the packaging of an album to a whole new level and will most likely change the music industry’s and our views on just how an album should be packaged. Radiohead is a band that knows that downloading is the future, but maybe physical releases of an album can become a celebrated occasion that only the die-hard fans will stand by. I think that is something that Radiohead is pushing for with the release of the “newspaper” album. I believe that with In Rainbows, Radiohead showed that they think that digital downloads are stale and need a nudge in a different direction. The King of Limbs is no different. Radiohead obviously is attacking the preconceived notion of the physical release of an album with the “newspaper” album release. If you think about it, they are the pioneer of change for the music industry and maybe the future really does belong to Radiohead.

The King Of Limbs

The King Of Limbs by Radiohead – Thoughts

The beginning of the album starts off with “Bloom”. A very heavy bass and percussion, thanks to Colin and Phil, respectably, song that at its climax even brings in flutes. This is one of the strongest songs on the entire album, in my opinion, just as it needs to be. The already fast-pace ramps up as other instruments are added. The sound is reminiscent of Amnesiac immediately. Thom’s first lyrics  “Open your mouth wide! A universe inside!” carries his voice so strongly. The percussion is persistent, along with the bass and the piano, from the beginning of the song is stagnant with it’s beat. Thom eventually serenades us with his haunting voice as the flute plays. The piano, percussion and bass are constantly reminding us they are the backbones of the song. This is one of the strongest songs on the entire album. Heavy instrumentation sounds ever so beautiful when the flutes ring through bringing us to the climax of the song.

A similar fast-paced beat ramps up in “Morning Mr. Magpie”. Thom’s opening vocals “You’ve got some nerve, coming hear. You stole my heart, give it back!” are striking and noticeably separate from the instruments. Thom’s vocal hymns are then displaced with the instruments. “You know you should, but you don’t” comes over and sets the beat once again. Thom’s soothing vocals turned instrumental bring us towards the end of the song. “Good morning, Mr. Magpie. How are we today?”

Instruments flood the beginning as the guitar plays in “Little By Little”. “The last one out of the box, the one who broke your spell,” is sung as we approach the chorus. The bass and percussion keep it afloat as the guitar plays tune. Thom comes in singing higher than the other songs right out of the gate. The melody is quick as Thom sings “Little by little” “I’m such a tease and you’re such a flirt”. The song ends and flows, as always, nicely into the next tune.

Phil Selway’s percussion keeps “Feral” really quick, as it has in the first four songs. Thom’s vocals are emotive and affecting. This is where the song sounds most like the Amnesiac recordings. Thom’s vocals are placed well and there is a more natural and organic feel to the song with the instruments. If there were such a thing as a “Treefingers” on this album, I would juxtapose“Feral” with it. As the shortest song on The King Of Limbs, it seems Radiohead wanted “Feral” to be a solid and quick-paced introduction to the album’s single“Lotus Flower”. The synth-heavy Radiohead is back after “Feral”. Right away, Thom’s vocals are beamed down from the heavens and a two-beat clap capitalizes. As The King of Limbs’ first single “Lotus Flower”, is a solid song and Thom’s vocal range is truly shown here. The chorus “There’s an empty space inside my heart where the weeds stay root, so now I set you free, I set you free” shows Thom’s ability to sing a solid tenor, as if we didn’t already know. Selway is steady on percussion with Colin pouring in the slight Kid A mechanical sound in the background. Thom’s vocals are really steady and strong. He has truly developed even more from In Rainbows . “…just to feed your face, ballooning head. Listen to your hear”, Thom sings as the song comes to a close.

Codex starts off with Thom voicing something and then being cut off as the piano moves us. Being my favorite song off the album, I can only say it is nothing short of beautiful. Thom hums begin to haunt us with poignant sound. The song takes a turn from a sad sound to a now hopeful sound when Thom starts to actually sing. The song reminds me of “Motion Picture Soundtrack”. “Sleight of hand, jump off the edge, into a clear lake, no one around” is sung in an uplifting sense. It feels as though this is the end of the album and they are making their exit. Like an ending to a night it goes quiet, then suddenly birds begin to chirp. I think this emulates Radiohead’s cunning musical brilliance. This is the most memorable moment for me on the album as the transition gave me “goose bumps”.

Starting us back up with the birds chirping as if there is new life back in The King Of Limbs. How clever. In the background of the song, Thom’s heard singing “Don’t haunt me, don’t hurt me” repeatedly as he also sings the first verse. The guitar chimes in steadily, as does the beating of a bongo, gluing  together “Give Up The Ghost” beautifully. “I think I should give up the ghost, into your arms” is rung through the end of the song with Thom in the background singing “Don’t haunt me, don’t hurt me” steadily throughout the whole song. The song ends with it and the synth sound from Kid A, almost like a movie reel ending its play through. How many times can I call Radiohead clever? They are the most astute band I can think of. Every single aspect of their album is intelligently thought through.

I was expecting “Separator” to sound like something I was longing for, which was another “Jigsaw Falling Into Place” intense song. It wasn’t, but what I did find is Radiohead knew me better than I, myself did, because “Separator” was something I didn’t know I wanted. The sound starts up somewhat slowly with Thom’s vocals and a stable beat from the percussion and guitar.  Thom’s vocals are redolent of The Bends sessions here. “I’m a fish now, out of water” confines the listener with Thom’s vocals. “If you think this over, you are wrong” rings through towards the middle of the song with the steady melody coming from the bass and percussion. “Wake me up, wake me now” brings us towards the end of the song and album. But wait, do you really think Radiohead would leave us with nothing to talk about? Fat chance. “If you think this is over, then you’re wrong” is sung in the middle of the song with Colin Greenwood’s bass strumming. This is the conspiracy theorist in me, but I think Radiohead is planning an Amnesiac/Kid A kind of release. I’m predicting they will release another album within the next year. Think about it: Separator is the name of the last song, separator to what? Radiohead is entirely too imaginative for it to mean nothing.

Radiohead is full of surprises. The band does it their way and that’s that. Don’t bother trying to understand why they do what they do, because you may hurt yourself trying to wrap your head around it. They announced on Monday, the 14th the album would be released Saturday, the 19th. And then, to top it all off, they release it a day early. Who does that?! There are no fillers on the The King Of Limbs . The entire album is composed of solid songs. That’s right, there are no intros, no outros to speak of. People are most definitely going to be complaining about this, but the fact of the matter it’s Radiohead and they are not about doing things indisposed. I feel like The King Of Limbs wasn’t rushed, but they have something they’re hiding for sure. I am not complaining about the album length, but I do (and let’s face it, always will) want more Radiohead. The fact that there are only 8 tracks can be disappointing to some, but when you realize the album is still over 40 minutes long you should no longer be disappointed. The King Of Limbs doesn’t leave the listener with an empty feeling, but it leaves the listener wanting more. Something like eating a really good dinner, having your favorite dessert and then wanting even more of your favorite dessert even though your belt is now tight and your shirt is nearly bursting at the seams.  Radiohead is going to make heads turn with this album. That is for sure. People were definitely expecting a more organic sound coming off of In Rainbows. The album is something that I would say closely resembles the session between Ok Computer and Amnesiac. There are times when listening to the album that I could hear a slight Kid A sound, but it’s not as apparent as Amnesiac. I’m excited to see what Radiohead does with the“Separator” theory. I’m confident on another release later this year tying the albums together. The “Newspaper” album should reveal more on it and you know I ordered mine already!

Who Are The Most Important People in History?

Before 1877 there were many people who succeeded in astonishing feats and changing the United States, as we know it such as Abraham Lincoln, George Washington, Andrew Jackson and so forth. Even after those years and into the twentieth century we most likely, in many people’s opinion, had the greatest men of all time to walk the homeland. These people include Franklin Delano Roosevelt, Ronald Reagan, Teddy Roosevelt and many more. I think that some people become overlooked with so many extraordinary people that we have had in this country. Just because they were not a president, vice president, or even a senator does not mean they did not play a bigger role then anyone else in the United States’ history.

The most influential group, person, or event in the United States since 1877 is actually a group of four people. The two main people and the one’s who started it all are: Robert Kahn of BB&N and Vinton Cerf of Stanford. These two people are a couple of the most influential persons to come out of the United States. They laid the groundwork for the Internet explosion. The two computer scientists, who joined forces at the Advanced Research Programs Agency (the ARPA), spent most of the 1970’s developing the transmission system for sending data between different networks of computers that were running incompatible operating systems. The system they developed is the technical achievement that is still used today in many countries, called TCP/IP (for Transmission Control Protocol and Internet Protocol).

At the time the two men’s achievement was, at first, practically scoffed at and was not viewed as life changing. The system was used just for a couple huge university and research computers. No one in the world foresaw what was about to unfold. Nowadays when one thinks of the Internet two things come to mind: e-mail and the World Wide Web, which came much later then the 1970’s. Until 1991, the only ways to use the Internet, other than for sending e-mail, were to use programs such as FTP (File Transfer Protocol). This allowed you to “log on” to another computer, and then to download files. But first, you had to know the exact “domain name” or address of the computer you wanted to access. You also had to have an account name and password for that specific computer. Nowadays this whole process seems somewhat nauseating.

Bringing the third person in the picture of the four, Tim Berners-Lee, a computer programmer at the European Center for Particle Research or CERN in Geneva. He designed the system in which people can click a link on a document or some other sort of file, and be redirected to the desired web page. This made no difference if it was coming from a computer down the hall or some one half way across the globe; no longer were domain names and passwords required! This brought the Internet to a viable worldwide phenomenon and ultimately was only in need of one thing to up lift it the billions of people across the world, for legislation to be passed.

Al Gore was the blunt of many humorous jokes in the late 1990’s because of his statement saying he created the Internet and in a way he did. He was the last of the forefathers of the World Wide Web. We actively supported and urged congress to pass a bill uplifting commercial and residential use. Finally in late 1991 it was done. Congress gave in and the Internet is what we know it today.

The Internet is one of the most important things in this world today. It is the main source of entertainment, news, knowledge, and most importantly- it’s the future. The Internet revolutionized how the world accessed information and communicated through the 1990’s, the ongoing development in speed, bandwidth, and functionality will continue to cause fundamental changes to how our world operates for decades to come. Some of the major trends shaping the future of the world provided by the Internet are: Globalism, Communities, and Technologies (including bandwidth, virtual reality, and wireless capabilities).

Globalism is the most important part of Internet. With the continuous revamps of the way one another communicates the world can become a lot more uniform and closer. Countries can dissolve and unravel problems and differences easier with better communication. Problems and disagreements will not have to escalate to a level where war is inevitable. Obviously, there are countries out there that cannot be reconciled with just like there always has been, but with a better way to convey the information the better a chance to repeal the possible disaster. A better-informed humanity will make better macro and micro level decisions. Continually working together will drive relations among all countries to a global standpoint. Attachments people have with their single countries they reside in will largely decrease. While attachments to the planet, as a whole, will increase greatly. This, with hope and time, will hammer the fact that everyone is created equally into people’s minds.

Communities will expand their knowledge at the neighborhood level. People will better themselves in their own online communities and become essentially, smarter and stronger. These communities will organize online and take advantage of the Internet’s tools such as mailing lists, newsgroups, and web sites and overall become more empowered. People that were once isolated in their town or city will be unshackled from their isolation and they will gain the ability to easily establish relationships with others that have the same interests and hobbies. Local communities will not be a sense of whose within a couple miles but more like who is online. People overall will not be bound to their geological location but to how far they manipulate the Internet.

And lastly, technology will and continues to double in power every few years. The ability to contact people in long distances, since roughly 2002, has greatly decreased in price due to Voice over IP, also known as VOIP. People will increasingly be able to call one another in video form. Over the years the resolution of the video will increase the amount of communication that can be transferred from a simple sentence like, “I really like apples”. Not only will voice inflections be noticed like using a normal phone but also deductions will be made via body gestures. Bandwidth and wireless capabilities continue to snow ball. These technologies continually give one the ability to send more data and send more data on the go. Making it easier to access communications. The better the access the better one’s knowledge of a desired object or thing can be. There have already been stories of people using the Internet site that uploads data in text in real time, Twitter, to find out if their house is the one on fire down the street. This knowledge could save lives and it came from the Internet on the go via cellular telephone.

Overall, nearly two billion people of about seven billion people have some way they utilize the Internet. These numbers are growing rapidly. The Internet is the future. It will give us the capabilities and means to send information to others across the world and eventually I believe that this magnificent way of communicating will give the world the ability to cure diseases and poverty. Communication is key with nearly everything we have in life from marriages to football teams. And no matter who you are you communicate with something whether it is an animate or inanimate object every day. With knowledge of others and other things across the world, thanks to the four fathers of the Internet: Al Gore, Robert Kahn, Vinton Cerf, and Tim Berners Lee, we not only as a country but as the planet Earth can come together and better understand one another, which in turn, will demolish segregation of ethnic groups. We are in the middle of this technological renaissance and we will eventually find the means via communication to nullify the countless problems we have with one another as a world. I believe that war will never cease, but with better communication we can prevent a lot of pointless wars.



End of the Year 2012 List

Top Album of 2012

  1. Title Fight – Floral Green
  2. Every Time I Die – Ex Lives
  3. The Chariot- One Wing
  4. Basement- Colourmeinkindness
  5. Anthony Green- Beautiful Things
  6. Minus The Bear- Infinity Overhead
  7. Circa Survive- Violent Waves
  8. Converge- All We Love We Leave Behind
  9. Enter Shikari- A Flashflood of Colour
  10. Make Do and Mend- Everything You Ever Loved
  11. The Neighbourhood- I’m  Sorry…
  12. Balance And Composure- 7” Acoustic
  13. The Ghost Inside – Get What You Give
  14. Sithu Aye- Isles EP


Albums That Hit Home for Me Overall (released any year)

  1. Title Fight – Floral Green
  2. Vampire Weekend – Contra
  3. Phantogram – Eyelid Movies
  4. The Chariot – Long Live
  5. Every Time I Die – Ex Lives
  6. Basement- Colourmeinkindness
  7. Anthony Green- Avalon
  8. Radiohead- Hail To The Thief
  9. The Neighbourhood- I’m  Sorry…
  10. Balance And Composure- 7” Acoustic
  11. La Dispute- Wildlife
  12. Balance And Composure- Separation
  13. Title Fight- Shed
  14. Title Fight- The Last Thing You Forget
  15. Every Time I Die- Gutter Phenomenon
  16. Every Time I Die- New Junk Aesthetic
  17. Touche Amore- Parting The Sea Between Brightness And Me
  18. Touche Amore/La Dispute split- Searching For A Pulse/The Worth of the World
  19. The Ghost Inside – Get What You Give

Top Songs 2012 (Released in 2012)

  1. Lefty by Title Fight
  2. Typical Miracle by Every Time I Die
  3. Sweater Weather by The Neighbourhood
  4. Covet by Basement
  5. Leaf by Title Fight
  6. Holy Book of Dilemma by Every Time I Die
  7. Head In The Ceiling Fan by Title Fight
  8. One Love by Anthony Green ft. Nate Ruess
  9. Lines by Big Boi ft. Phantogram
  10. Breakers by Local Natives
  11. Disassemble by Make Do and Mend

Top Songs in 2012 Overall

  1. Safe In Your Skin by Title Fight
  2. Where Am I? by Title Fight
  3. No Son of Mine by Every Time I Die
  4. Fitter. Happier by Radiohead
  5. Castle Builders by La Dispute
  6. Sweater Weather by The Neighbourhood
  7. Covet by Basement
  8. Le Prologue by letlive
  9. The Most Beautiful Bitter Fruit by La Dispute
  10. Guitarred And Feathered by Every Time I Die
  11. The City by The Chariot
  12. Nightlife by Phantogram
  13. Dreamcatchers by Title Fight
  14. Emergency Broadcasting System by Every Time I Die
  15. And Shot Each Other by The Chariot
  16. Your Screen Door by Title Fight
  17. You’re A Liar by Jamie Rhoden

Artist/Band of the Year

  1. Every Time I Die
  2. Title Fight
  3. Basement
  4. The Neighbourhood
  5. Balance And Composure
  6. La Dispute
  7. Anthony Green
  8. Phantogram
  9. Radiohead
  10. The Ghost Inside
  11. Touche Amore
  12. Circa Survive

Artists/Bands to see Big things From in 2013

  1. Balance And Composure
  2. Local Natives
  3. La Dispute
  4. Brand New
  5. Phantogram
  6. Mansions
  7. Every Time I Die
  8. Title Fight
  9. Tyler, The Creator
  10. Earl Sweatshirt
  11. Justin Timberlake
  12. The Neighborhood

Albums I Need More Time with 2012

  1. Bad Books – II
  2. Circa Survive – Violent Waves
  3. Big Boi- Vicious Lies and Dangerous Rumors
  4. Hostage Calm- Please Remain Calm
  5. Now, Now- Threads
  6. Frank Ocean- Channel Orange
  7. Happy Body Slow Brain – Sleepy EP
  8. Metric- Synthetica
  9. Maps And Atlases- Beware and Be Grateful
  10. Mixtapes- Even On The Worst Nights