The Late Greats’ American Dream

A REVIEW OF KIDS YOU KNEW by THE LATE GREATS

late greats

One of the things I miss the most about the 90’s is the overwhelming sense of optimism that permeated the culture at the time. There was a sense of energy that was present in every aspect of life and every genre of music; picking up Kids You Knew by The Late Greats immediately took me back to that time, at least on the emotional level, and with the social climate of the world reaching a fever pitch, I can’t imagine a better remedy for the dour shadow that has been cast over the collective mood of our country.

I won’t beat around the bush, this album, with the exception of the last song “Knock It Down”, has an incredible tempo. Songs like “M.I.A” and “The Night You’ll Always Remember” are very reminiscent of some of the speedier works of the Wallflowers or Third Eye Blind, which, if you’re anything like me, was exciting to say the least. To call any one specific area of this album the hallmark of the band would be a disservice to them as every song is well crafted, from the lyrics all the way to the bass line.

There are little hints of influence all over this album for anybody that spends time listening for it, and I love that. “Walk Away”, whether it was intentional or not, has a very Subime-ish ska feel that sucks you in and keeps you there with an almost hypnotic, staccato guitar.

My favorite song, without a doubt, has to be “Lost Highway”.   I’ve always had a deep appreciation for songs that tap into my love of fatalistic lyrics set to a breakneck tempo. It reminds me very much of the Voodoo Glow Dolls, which dates me more than I’d like to admit, so I’ll leave it at that.

Depending on how you look at things, there is one drawback to this album; it’s entirely too short. That in and of itself is a compliment because I want more… I’m whole-heartedly looking forward to their next project, and the fact that you name your own price when you buy this album certainly takes away from the sting of having the album end so early.

There are two different kinds of people that are going to go out and download this album: old school rockers like me who appreciate a very 90’s experience that’s laced with a little bit of old school punk, and kids who actually have a vested interest in learning about quality music. I’d highly recommend this album to just about anybody. You can find their music at http://thelategreats.bandcamp.com/ or at the group’s Facebook page, https://www.facebook.com/thelatestgreatest.

The American Creed

Myemidons set up

 

The American Creed – modified, original by Dean Alfange, 1922

I do not choose to be a common man; It is my right to be uncommon. I seek the opportunity to develop the talents my creator has given me. I do not wish to be a kept citizen, humbled and dulled by allowing the state to look after me. I want to take the calculated risk; to dream and to build; to fail and to succeed. I refuse to barter incentive for a dole. I prefer the challenges of life to guaranteed existence; the thrill of fulfillment to the calm of utopia. I will not trade freedom for charity nor my dignity for a handout. I will never cower before any Earthly master nor bend to any threat. It is my heritage to stand erect, proud and unafraid of the storm on the horizon; to think and act for myself; to enjoy the benefits of my creation and face the world boldly, saying, “This, I have done.” All this is what it means to be an American.

Anybody know anything about crowd funding?

Hey everybody, Lola and I are looking for a bit of help with a bit of college capital and I was wondering if any of you had any hints on effective crowdfunding.  The link to Lola’s College Quest is right here.  Check it out and message me if you have any input.  Thanks!

 

-R

Psycho-Warfare

A new, powerful post by my significant other.

 

Lately I haven’t been able to think straight after the incident in that Orlando nightclub called Pulse. I am extremely upset about it; I’m angry, sad, emotional and disappointed. I̵…

Source: Psycho-Warfare

The Conjuring 2, Notes of LGBT affairs, family and more…

edandlorraine.jpg

 

Hello everybody,  here’s my first review after a little while.  I hope you like it.  First I’d like to say some things about Orlando, religion (which ties into the movie)  and what family is to me.

Orlando is a tragedy; a tragedy for the LGBT; a tragedy for straight people; for gun owners; for families but more than that it’s a tragedy for the ghost of our country.  We used to be strong enough as a country to put aside personal issues to help each other in crisis.  So far, I’ve personally seen and heard people calling me and my gf (who is trans, look at he blog at Hostage In The Skin) perverts, pedophiles and a cavalcade of other terms that should make people squirm.

We get it, two people of the same gender (identified as such or not) grosses you out.   That I can get past.  You have a small mind and can’t wrap your head around it.  What you can understand is that we, fundamentally, are the same as you and everybody else and are not by default dangerous to you or the american family.  Hell, we want a family of our own, white picket fence, financial troubles, misadventures and all.  Today I’ve seen both love and hate from “family”.  To my cousin Eric, I love you man, you’re the example from which the model of family should sculpted from.  To my OTHER cousin who shall remain unnamed, I’m sorry I offended you, but fuck you and goodbye.  I curse,  I get that, but to bring your God into my situation and take anything away from my one day wife or brothers in arms…. well that’s unforgivable.

So when I hear “God would have wanted the shooter to kill more” or “the fags had it coming” hits my timeline, I began to lose my mind.  I served in the military as most of you know.  I deployed multiple times and saw combat.  Lola has dealt with a lifetime of abuse at others and is still standing.  Oh yea, she’s FROM a military family, so she’s see that struggle too.  (thanks Pop [my nickname for my future father in law], you’re also my brother in arms and I love you for it.)  If that’s your God, then he is NOT God at all and I want nothing to do with him.  He didn’t watch my ass in Afghanistan, guys like SSG Christopher Cazinha did… guys like Marshall Reeves and Jason Thomas did…. guys like Clinton Springer did… and he did it battling his own demons.  RIP brother.

How does this tie into the Conjuring 2?   It’s the concept that religion is some kind of shield against the perversions this life has to offer, that’s what bothers me.  The ONE complaint I have about this movie is the fact that it relies heavily on the pulpit demagoguery of Ed and Lorraine Warren.  I’d of rather dealt with the spirits on my own than bow to that kind of “higher power”.  We make ourselves strong… and I think, if this was a real occurrence, that if the power of the family was emboldened then they would have been able to overcome Valak without a bible.

With that being said,  the movie was, for all intents, everything it claimed to be.  It WAS fucking creepy at times… and it relied on more than jump scares.  Patrick Wilson (one of my favorite actors) kills it again and demonstrated some good vocals by covering Elvis’ “Cant Help Falling In Love”.

The storyline is well polished, picking up where the last ended.  I’d no idea the Warren’s were involved with the Enfield house but I did know about Amityville, which the writers used to tie the movies together.

As far as accuracy, I’ve watched film footage and heard audio from the real life Enfield case and the movie is SPOT on.  Bill Wilkenson’s supposed voice isn’t embellished at all, and never ceases to be creepy until you realize that he isn’t even what he seems. In fact, he’s downright tragic.  My fear in life is becoming this character, and if you see the movie, you’ll understand why.  No spoilers here.

There’s a strong visual cue in this movie, and I mean that in the sense that there is plenty of dead silence that forces you to see the demons in the film as opposed to waiting for the creepy music to set you up.  Watch out for the crooked man btw, he’ll screw your crooked little mind up with some crooked little cadology.  You’ll avoid children’s toys for days.

I’ll easily give this movie an 8 out of ten.   It surpassed the first by relying less on the Warren’s and more on the reality of the situation.  For the record, the British go between, Maurice Gross was amazing, and somebody you could sympathize with.  He was the family’s real life hero.

Go and check this movie out, and check out Lola’s blog, hostageinthisskin.wordpress.com

 

Thanks!

 

Ryan

Busy with Life

Originally posted on hostage in this skin:
Recently, I’ve been really busy with figuring out where I’m headed towards in the near future. Me and Ryan found me a dress-form bodice for when I learn to sew and have something to work on cloth with. I put my gown on it that I had bought…

Coming soon!

well-be-right-back-well-be-right-back-monkey-whall-org

 

Hey everybody, thought I’d drop back into the blog after a long hiatus and say “Hi”.  I’ll be forgoing my normal short stories and poetry to concentrate on movie reviews and social commentary. If there’s anything you’d like to see reviewed or talked about, let me know!

Ryan

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