Thursday, December 27, 2007

Eastern Promises

This movie was about a Russian mafia-type organization in London. Viggo Mortenson is some sort of undercover law-enforcement agent trying to bring down the organization. Naomi Watts is a doctor(? she calls herself a midwife) who is interested in the organization because an unidentified girl dies while giving birth and it turns out she was raped by the organizations head dude. It's a drama, with some action but not much (one really good fight scene). It's very moving and sad. And very good!

Grade: A

Tuesday, December 25, 2007


Neil Gaiman is by far one of my favorite authors (perhaps you have noticed that) at the moment. His take on the Marvel Eternals (apparently created quite a while ago) is amazing. This is a story about ordinary people who discover they are extraordinary people, in fact that they are not people but invincible beings created to watch over the Earth by giant robot-like alien/gods called Celestials. This is an exquisitely created tale, which places the Eternals squarely in the Marvel universe. The nod to Greek and Roman mythology and the explanation of gods is brilliant. A definite must for Gaiman fans or for fans of Marvel.

Grade: A+

Nature Girl

Carl Hiaasen's latest novel is just as quirky and fun as his others. He's really good at developing a lot of storylines and then bringing them together in unusual and unlikely ways. I enjoyed this... it's about a sort-of crazy woman who's trying to take revenge on a slimy telemarketer.

Grade: B-

Monday, December 24, 2007

Sandman: Worlds' End

In this volume (the 8th), a random group of travelers find themselves at the Inn and Worlds' End during a reality storm, and tell stories to pass the time. This is an absolutely masterful work, just as exquisite as ever.

Grade: A+

Sunday, December 23, 2007


I just rewatched this movie last night with my parents. I had caught it in the theaters. The second time around I was still stunned by the visuals. The cinematography is excellent, and everything is so beautiful, even the violence. I really like this movie, despite its violence and historical inaccuracies. Those can be forgiven since the movie is all about its message, which is a bit of a political one: freedom isn't free.

Grade: B+

Sandman: Brief Lives

This, the seventh volume of Neil Gaiman's amazing graphic novel Sandman, is an excellent one. It's a self-contained story featuring most prominently Dream and Delirium. Delirium is not a main character in many of the stories so it's pretty cool. Dream and Del are trying to find Destruction, who has left the family. The story is about change, how there are two sides to every coin and thus everyone can change, and how all lives are equally brief (even those of the Endless!). This is an excellent read.

Grade: A+

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Sofie Metropolis

This is a mystery-romance(ish) novel about a Greek girl in NYC who's trying to be a PI. It's quite along the same lines as a Stephanie Plum novel, but the combined efforts of 'Tori Carrington' (really a husband and wife team) cannot match Janet Evanovich at all. So basically a Stephanie Plum knockoff that's not as good. Oh well, at least it was entertaining.

Grade: C

Monday, December 17, 2007


Originally uploaded by marichica88

So, I'm pretty much addicted to Flickr right now. It's a GREAT photosharing site. Easy to use, and the pro accounts which let you do everything are not that expensive (I am considering purchasing one myself). If you use anything, USE THIS!!!

Grade: A+

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Andrew Bird & The Mysterious Production of Eggs

Andrew Bird is probably the best male vocalist I've heard in a while. I've been really caught up on female vocalists but here is a man who has a voice that is just as exquisite as other artists I've been loving like Feist and Leona Naess. This is an excellent album. Bird's lyrics are so great, it is a beautiful listening experience. The style is somewhere between Iron & Wine and The Honorary Title. It's as heartfelt as Damien Rice or Bright Eyes, but with a smoother and more compelling voice. I loved pretty much the entire album, I guess if I have to pick three I'd say "A Nervous Tic Motion of the Head to the Left," "The Naming of Things," and "Masterfade."

Grade: A(+)

Saturday, December 15, 2007


Damien Rice's first album is absolutely exquisite. It has soaring strings, heart-wrenching acoustic melodies, and beautiful lyrics. This is an indie album everyone should hear. It's all great (the only song I didn't particularly care for was "Cheers Darlin'"). My favorites were "Delicate", "Volcano", "Older Chests", and "Amie".

Grade: A+

The Geminids

And I have gone on to events now! Basically by reading my reviews you should be able to piece together to some extent what I've been up to. Anyway, this was supposed to be the best meteor shower of 2007. The internets told me it would be best on the 14th at about 2 am, so that's when Jeff and I trucked ourselves out to Barksdale Field with a towel and heavy coats and some popcorn. It was in the mid-30s and windy, and basically got really cold pretty quickly. We stayed out for about 30 minutes and saw about 9 or 10 meteors, which is a really good rate for a meteor shower! It was far more successful than our 2 attempts at watching showers last year. The meteors were bright and some were big and slow. Also Mars has been out and it's still really bright and cool. I am glad to have taken astronomy and know lots of stars and constellations. And also why we have meteor showers!

Grade: B

Central Reservation

This album by Beth Orton was rather disappointing for me. While it had its moments (notably "Feel To Believe" and "Stolen Car"), for the most part it was boring. Beth Orton has a lovely voice and seems to have the talent to make great music, this was not a particularly good effort.

Grade: C

I Tried To Rock You But You Only Roll

Leona Naess has a beautiful voice, and this is a beautiful album. Her melodious tones can urge you to dance or rock you to sweet dreams. This is an exquisite collection of art, with each song being just as worthy of listening as the last. This is another female singer-songwriter I can get into.

Grade: A

In Defense of the Genre

Say Anything's newest album, after ...Is A Real Boy, is fairly good. There are still the same sarcastic lyrics and singing style, while the musical style varies a bit. Overall, it was not as good as ...Is a Real Boy. It was another 2 disc set. "An Insult to the Dead" is pretty good; so is "The Church Channel", "Spay Me", "About Falling", and "Spores".

Grade: C+

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Let It Die

Feist's second album (the one before The Reminder) is quite good. While it does not hold the superb quality of The Reminder, it still retains her soulful voice and lyrics. It is melodic and beautiful and has some French songs. "Mushaboom" is great, so is "Let It Die", "Inside and Out", and "Secret Heart". I liked it a lot.

Grade: A-

Snow Crash

This sci fi novel by Neal Stephenson may be 15 years old, but it's still just as exciting today. Unlike many sci-fi novels which are very obviously old by this point, this one could have been written right now. It's still a very plausible future. It is really interesting, quite intelligent, and a very absorbing read. The world is so complex and revealed through the plot. The book is exciting, quirky, and enthralling. It's about hackers but not just that... A must read!

Grade: A+

Our Love To Admire

I've always liked a few Interpol songs, but I have never loved a full album of theirs. This is no exception. There are a few great tracks: "Heinrich Maneuver" and "Rest My Chemistry" being the most notable ones. The others are hit or miss. This is a pretty good album but really not that great.

Grade: C+

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

All Rise

Inara George has a beautiful voice and beautiful songwriting abilities. She is quite reminiscent of Feist (though her style is unique and not exactly like anybody else). "Genius", "Fools In Love", and "Turn On/Off" are excellent tracks. I love female singer-songwriters right now, and this album is an excellent one!

Grade: A


I ate at Nawab on Monday for lunch with my parents. I had only eaten there once before. This time we all got the buffet. It was really good (both times). Their chicken dishes are excellent and they have good veggies. I just stick to the mild so I can't say anything about spiciness (well, the mild is not too hot at all). Indian food is delicious. Oh yeah this is located in the Big Lots shopping center across from where Miyako and Chez Trinh are. You can totally walk there from campus, and I don't think the buffet is too pricey.

Grade: A

The Cheese Shop

The Cheese Shop is a common favorite of my family, and of W&M students as it is convenient (in CW, market square), and pretty cheap (around $4 for a sandwich). Today I discovered that there's a 10% student discount on Wednesdays for sandwiches! I love my usual cheese sandwich - cheddar and havarti on French with house dressing. You have to try the house dressing. Also Jeff and I love trying the cheese of the day - it's awesome. The shop overall is really cool, it has all kinds of goodies. Definitely somewhere to go, walk there and get some exercise!

Grade: A


I decided restaurants would be good to review too! Miyako is a Japanese restaurant in the Williamsburg shopping center. It's near campus (15 minute walk or so). I have eaten here several times and love it. Tuesdays is dollar sushi night (though that's not exactly what it costs), anyway, the sushi's cheap on Tuesdays. And it's delicious! Yesterday we went for Nathan's birthday celebration. I got Philadelphia salmon rolls and a house salad, Jeff got tuna rolls and miso soup. We also tried some squid. Their house salads are amazing; the dressing is a sesame vinegraitte sort of, it's awesome. The Philadelphia salmon rolls were awesome, I didn't really like the squid though. But that's probably just personal taste. The tuna was good too. A great deal there is any of the dinner boxes, they come with lots of food. You get an entree dish, some tempura veggies and shrimp, rice of course, edamame, miso soup, and a salad. I hear the miso's pretty good, I don't like soup but... it has tofu in it which is interesting. Everything I've gotten there is great. The Hwe Du Bop is highly recommended if you like sashimi. Apparently that's a Korean dish. The restaurant itself is nicely decorated and very receptive to students.

Grade: A

Sunday, December 9, 2007

Live It Out; Grow Up and Blow Away

Decided to do both of these Metric albums in the same post - mostly because I listened to them in a row and so can't fully distinguish between the two. Apparently, Grow Up and Blow Away was the first album that Metric recorded (in 2001) but due to label issues it was just released this year. I love the song "Raw Sugar", and "Soft Rock Star" is pretty great. Overall, it's good. Live It Out was released in 2005 and overall I liked it better than Grow Up and Blow Away. It is quite good, notable songs include "Empty", "Monster Hospital", and "The Police and The Private". All in all I really like Metric. They are good female-vocalist indie rock.

-Live It Out: A-
-Grow Up and Blow Away: B

Make Some Time For Wasting

I first heard about Katie Todd Band from some internet source - probably Hype Machine, but I'm not entirely sure. Anyway, this is a breathtaking album full of beautiful songwriting, beautiful music, and a beautiful voice. "This Time" is still my favorite, with excellent piano. I highly recommend this, it is soft but refreshing.

Grade: A


I haven't listened to The Starting Line in quite some time. I have Say It Like You Mean It and saw them in concert, but haven't heard much from Based on a True Story. Anyway, Direction is pretty good. It has some more rock-y elements which is interesting, though maybe not the best thing for this band. Anyway, I like "Hurry", "Island", and "Way With Words." Mostly, this is a poppy album and kind of fun.

Grade: B

Scream and Light Up the Sky

The second album by The Honorary Title is quite excellent! I really love the song "Untouched and Intact", which I believe is a single. It is at least as good as their first full-length, though I can't decide which I like better.

Grade: A

Also, I love the song "Accident Prone," but I don't think it's actually on the album - I just found it on Ruckus and don't know where it's from!

Grading System

A handy guide to my reviewing standards.

A+ = superb, outstanding, excellent, I really loved it.
A = I loved it!
A- = Awesome! Loved it but it could have been a bit better.
B+ = Really, really liked it. Can't quite say I loved it.
B = Really liked it!
B- = Liked it a lot, but not excellent.
C+ = I liked it quite well, but wouldn't say I 'really liked it'.
C = I liked it.
C- = It was okay.
D+ = It was a little less than okay.
D = I didn't like it.
D- = It was pretty bad.
F = Hated it.

So hopefully I will go by that!

The Needles The Space

The second full-length album by Straylight Run is better than their first. It is reminiscent of their EP, Prepare To Be Wrong, but has evolved a bit since then. The single, "Soon We'll Be Living In the Future", is a good place to start. It will give you a feel for the full album, though I'm not saying it all sounds the same. I really like "Take It to Manhattan" and "Still Alone". This is quite good.

Grade: B+

Under the Blacklight

Rilo Kiley's summer release is really fantastic. The musical style varies from song to song, and the lyrics are their usual clever sexual references. "15" is a jazzy tune and very sexual. "The Angels Hung Around" gets quite twangy, while "Give A Little Love" is a slow R&B piano-filled jam. "Smoke Detector" is sixties-esque rock, and "Silver Lining" has a cool vintage feel (I dunno how else to describe it - the music video helps too). "Close Call" is pop with a catchy drumline. "The Moneymaker" is a smooth but dirty-sounding song with some sweet guitar. "Breakin' Up" has some electronic sounds and is otherwise reminiscent of something maybe Aretha Franklin would have done, or maybe that song "I'm Coming Out". "Under the Blacklight" is kind of pop-country-ish, but has some cool keyboard effects. "Dreamworld" is in fact quite dreamy and has bongos! "Dejalo" is really funky. My favorites are "15", "Breakin' Up", "Give a Little Love", and "Close Call". Altogether, this is an outstanding album!

Grade: A(+)

Thanks to Ruckus, I can now download loads of music really easily! So there will probably be much more music reviewing than previously.

Mean Girls

Yes, I've seen this before (several times) but since I watched it last night I thought I would review it. It's quite funny, though as Jeff pointed out it gets a little unfunny in the middle. The part where the main character gets way obsessed with being a Plastic is not my favorite. But, overall, it's quite funny - especially Tina Fey and Tim Meadows. Also the health class... "Now, chlamydia - K, L..."

Grade: B

Saturday, December 8, 2007

The Golden Compass (movie)

This is probably the best book-to-film adaptation I've seen in a while. My friends who hadn't read the book said it was confusing, though. Which I guess I can understand: it seemed they rushed it by cutting out details while still including most of the plot points of the book. There were a few key changes, one of which was just to make it less violent, which I suppose I'm okay with, though, I hope they don't censor anything in the ones to come (if those are made). I know the religious overtones are pretty controversial (it was banned in Canada!) but if they change them that would destroy the basic premise. Anyway, my biggest issue was with the ending. I wish they had kept the original one, though I guess since they didn't know if they were making another, this one was better for that. Altogether, I was fairly pleased. The attention to details from the book was often superb, and that's always cool.

Grade: A-

Friday, December 7, 2007

Harvest Moon: Save the Homeland

This is for PS2. Jeff and I just completed a year with the fishing storyline. Now, I was a big fan of Harvest Moon 64, played it obsessively and such. But this one not only limits your playing time but also your options. You just play for one year and try to get an ending (you can carry your stuff over to a new year but you have to meet everyone again and that's kind of annoying...). You can't get married, there's no chopping wood, the map is smaller... basically, it's not as good. Better graphics, sure, and some improvements like you can walk through your crops! Wow. I would like to play some of the non-themed newer ones for PS2 or whatever, that may just be improvements over the older ones. This one gets kind of boring near the end, whereas in the 64 version there was always something new to strive for! (Or, at least, after playing for 3 years game time there still was!). So anyway, still pretty addictive, but leaves something to be desired.

Grade: B-

Thursday, December 6, 2007

Mary Ann Meets The Gravediggers And Other Short Stories

This is a Regina Spektor compilation album (it was created for release in the UK). I LOVE Regina Spektor, so of course I like this. It has some really fantastic songs on it. I hadn't heard Songs before I heard this so I thought some of them were new, but it looks as though I was mistaken. Anyway, "Consequence of Sounds" is fantastic. I also really liked "Prisoners". "Us" is one of my favorites by her, and I also love "Oedipus". And of course "Chemo Limo" is great. I guess what I'm trying to say is this is a GREAT little compilation!!!

Grade: A

News on the concert front: this Saturday's Regina Spektor concert was postponed. Again. For the third time. Regina, I hope you get better soon! I am going to have to find a new concert going partner if it gets rescheduled too late, because Jeff will be leaving for Japan on January 5th. How sad!

Tuesday, December 4, 2007

Tin Man (miniseries)

This came on SciFi the past three nights. It was a 'new cinematic retelling' of the Wizard of Oz story. While only nodding briefly to the original here and there, I thought it was imaginative and cool. It was silly and slightly cheesy, as any good SciFi original production should be. I like Zooey Deschanel, also. I would recommend watching it, but don't expect just a new version of the old one.

Grade: B

Portal (flash)

Holy god, that's addictive. Fun puzzly madness!

Grade: B

Heroes, 'Chapter Two'

The finale of "Chapter Two" of Heroes was last night at 9 on NBC. (I should warn you, there's some spoilers).
I will admit, when I first heard about Heroes I was pretty uninterested. But then Jeff watched it online and highly recommended it. So, this summer, thanks to the sadly no-longer-extant TV Links, I obsessively devoured the first season. I LOVED IT, and was seriously looking forward to the new season. However, it has been kind of a disappointment. At first, I was still really excited about it, despite the slow start. The plot really dragged along, and the end-of-the-world scheme wasn't introduced until halfway in. This resulted in a pretty unexciting season. A lot of the plot points seemed really improbable (for the show, I mean, it's kind of improbable altogether in general but I mean people doing really stupid things). So that bothered me a little, and the finale was kind of anticlimactic and a lot of issues failed to be resolved. Of course, this could have been due to the writers' strike, and may be resolved in the 3rd chapter, which I will probably watch even if it sucks. The second season had been publicized as focusing on entirely new characters - and I think this would have been better than drying to milk more out of the old ones. The new characters that were introduced were barely included in the plot. Also, I am not excited at all about the super-recurring villain thing (i.e., they should have left Sylar dead, that whole subplot was boring and not well integrated). Besides, why would Peter leave the Irish chick in a nonexisting future! They don't even mention her at the end!!! Agh. Anyway. So, yeah, disappointing.

Grade: B-

The Book of Jhereg

This is actually a collection of three books by Stephen Brust, all of which are in the Vlad Taltos series. These are the first three. Jeff had been trying to get me to read this for quite a while, and I had been somewhat hesitant, because a lot of fantasy is pretty bad, I've gotta say. However, he persisted to the point of bringing the books from home so I could look at them, and I was swayed by his insistence that these were different fantasy novels. So, I dove into Jhereg, the first book. I was pretty much immediately hooked. The real draw is that the world is really well imagined, and it's not written in the typical fantasy style. Brust is not trying to say 'look at this awesome world I've created, at the expense of plot and character development.' In fact, these are very character-driven, contemporary stories that are simply located in a very fascinating world, which is only revealed little by little as things become important to the story. These three novels (Jhereg, Yendi, and Teckla) are about the assassin Vlad Taltos. They each have quite a different tone to them. I was initially interested in only reading one at a time and reading other things between, but I was so into it that I read the whole collection in sequence - granted, each book is only 17 chapters. I really want to get into the next few books but am giving it a rest at a moment, and checking out Snow Crash by Neal Stephenson.

Grade: A

new direction

As the new description indicates, I'm taking this blog to new heights in a perhaps futile effort to save it. Basically I now intend to review anything on here. I decided not to change the title because anything that's speaking out, or eradicating boredom, is in the spirit of conquering silence. I realize that no one really reads this, but I don't really care.

Saturday, November 3, 2007


It has been quite a long time since I posted. I'm kind of giving up on the music blog thing - it's just not something I really have time for. Perhaps I'll occasionally write on here, maybe keep it as a more public blog... as opposed to my LiveJournal.

I guess out of habit... here's my fave artists/songs/albums/whatever right now.

-Jonathan Coulton - a comedy artist whose music is actually really good! He's very clever, has a wide range of topics, I really recommend him.

-The Magnetic Fields - Really great musicians. I've mostly heard 69 Love Songs, only a few other things, but it's pretty great. Not every song is something I love, but that's just it - they're so ridiculously diverse stylistically!

-Tori Amos - Umm, hello, she's amazing.

-Feist - Do I need to tell you how great Feist is? I absolutely LOVE her music... can't get enough of it.

-John Frusciante - randomly his solo stuff is quite awesome! Yes, I like RHCP too, but I've gotten a little tired of them being played as every other song on XM, and that's the only radio I use, so Frusciante's solo material is a refreshing change. In fact it really sounds nothing like RHCP for the most part... so check it out for something fresh.

-the new Honorary Title! - I've only heard a few songs and clips from the rest, but oh-em-gee it's good so far.

I will be grabbing some Bright Eyes off the lovely Michael Vogel in the near future, so maybe I'll get around to saying how that goes.

Also, I saw Guster and Brett Dennen in concert last weekend - and let me tell you, despite not knowing much of Guster at the time, they were really good live performers!!! I was very impressed. Brett Dennen was also pretty good, also an unknown for me, although I found I have one of their songs. The singer's voice seems a little too much the same all the time to make it great. I think one of my favorite things about Guster was their use of bongos. YES, BONGOS!!!
Also, I'd like to point out that the new Lake Matoaka amphitheater is a FANTASTIC venue. The acoustics are pretty much amazing, it's a beautiful outdoors location, and it's just got a cool feel to it.

Anyway, Jeff and I are catching Regina Spektor at the NorVa pretty soon, should be a good time.

So that was, in fact, a music blog.
Maybe other stuff later?

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

It's still 2007... I still have time to finish this list!

61. Escape The Fate - Ok, this one's easy, I've heard them before! I have "Situations" and "Not Good Enough For Truth in the Cliche." I was obsessed with both of them for a good while, and amazingly still like them. VERDICT: Thumbs way up!

62. Oh No! Oh My! - I heard "The Party Punch" and it was catchy and bouncy and indie. I like it. VERDICT: Thumbs up!

63. Between the Trees - Listened to "As You Are Reality...", it's interesting electronica, though sort of just reminds me of all the Christian rock I used to listen to. VERDICT: Thumbs up.

64. Moros Eros - Heard "Today Is The Day" and noticed the singer's voice, and sort of the song, is somewhat monotonous. Not my cup of tea, really. VERDICT: Eh, shrug.

65. Sick City - I liked the sound of "XX XY" from the beginning. It is not particularly a new sound, or original, but it is still pleasing to the ears. VERDICT: Thumbs up.

66. Tokyo Police Club - The name of this band sounds quite familiar. Anyway, heard "Nature of the Experiment" and really liked it. Reminiscent of the Arctic Monkeys and the Strokes. Good stuff! VERDICT: Thumbs way up!

67. Every Move a Picture - I have "Signs of Life," and like it a lot. Also listened to "Outlaw," and it was quite aurally pleasing. Similar to the Killers, the Bravery, but they have their own sound. VERDICT: Thumbs way up!

68. Cute Is What We Aim For - Another one I've heard of! I have "There's A Class For This," and I like it but it is sort of blending in my memory with all the other similar-sounding pop-punk... VERDICT: Thumbs up.

69. Everybody Else - Wow, I've heard of them too! I downloaded "Born To Do" a while ago for whatever reason. I really like it. I'd say this is definitely a band to check out, and watch out for. Because they're awesome. Listened to "Meat Market" on Myspace, still hugely impressed. Running over to Hype Machine immediately. VERDICT: Thumbs way up!!!

70. Gallows - Alas, I had to look them up, my expertise has ended. Listened to "Abandoned Ship." It's punk, bordering on Screamo/Hardcore. Urgh. Verdict: Thumbs down.

71. Uncut - Mmkay, heard "Hideaway" on myspace... like it, but not blown away or anything. VERDICT: Thumbs up.

72. Hot Chip - I thought I knew them but I must have been confused. Listened to "My Piano" and liked it. I dunno how to describe the genre, I'd say... cool. VERDICT: Thumbs up.

73. Mikoto - It's a hardcore band. Damn you, hardcore! And damn you Mikoto for being somehow catchy hardcore! Verdict: Thumbs only half down.

74. Jonezetta - Ooh, I had forgotten about Jonezetta! I heard them on XM a while back and loved them. I think it was "Hot Machete" that I really liked. Listened to "Imagination", it was awesome! VERDICT: Thumbs way up!

75. The Horrors - Hmm, I am not such a fan of punk... but it is not bad. VERDICT: Eh?

76. Band of Horses - Weird, I found two songs by them on my iTunes that had never been listened to. Also the genre is Children's Music? Listened to "The End's Not Near" and it was chill and good-sounding. VERDICT: Thumbs up!

77. The Devil Wears Prada - Oh dear. More thrashy hardcore. VERDICT: Thumbs down.

78. Shitdisco - I like the name! Heard "Reactor Party," it's catchy and very much Scottish. :D VERDICT: Thumbs up!

79. Bound Stems - Listened to "Refuse the Refuse," and agreed with AP that it has similarities with Modest Mouse, and also liked it a lot! VERDICT: Thumbs way up!

80. Hot Like (A) Robot - They don't actually have their own myspace page, so I perused some fan-run ones, and heard all I needed - it was not pleasant. VERDICT: Thumbs down.

Saturday, May 12, 2007

not getting back to the list yet...

I feel like I should finish that list but at the moment I am going to fawn over things I'm loving at the moment.

-"Must Be the Moon" by !!! - a great, catchy song.
-Imogen Heap - she's an awesome singer-songwriter, I just love her.
-Brandi Carlile - Another great singer-songwriter, has a new album out now!
-Bjork - what I've heard of Volta is amazing.
-Noisettes - super dancy and catchy, and amazing.
-Arctic Monkeys - they're just amazing.
-"Tonight" by Kate Walsh - I got it free off of iTunes, and I think I've found a new great singer-songwriter.
-Interpol - Zach gave me Antics, and WOW it is good.

Last but not least, Pandora online radio. It KNOWS me SO WELL!!!

I think I should sleep now.

Friday, April 13, 2007

and so it continues...

51. Evaline - I listened to "Calm Touching" on their myspace. They put an impressively original spin on your usual rock/pop stuff. I like it a lot. VERDICT: Thumbs way up!

52. Chin Up Chin Up - Cool indie pop. I heard "This Harness Can't Ride Anything." Quite catchy. VERDICT: Thumbs up!

53. The Transit War - I heard "Radar" and was immediately hooked. I really like it - catchy guitar, cool vocals, it's just high quality. VERDICT: Thumbs way up!

54. Envy on the Coast - I really like this too! I recommend "Temper Temper." For some reason I'm fond of songs that repeat words (like "C'mon" by Go Betty Go). This is great! VERDICT: Thumbs way up!

55. Job For a Cowboy - This is some pretty brutal death metal. In fact, too brutal for me. At least the song "Embedded" is. VERDICT: Thumbs down.

56. Bomb The Music Industry! - I heard "I Don't Love You Anymore" and it lives up to their self-proclaimed genre label of ska/happy hardcore/punk. It's quite catchy, with trumpet and piano and it's super good! VERDICT: Thumbs way up!

57. Forward Russia! - Listened to "Don't Be a Doctor," it was pretty sweet atmospheric indie for the first third, then transformed into something... else. Whatever you'd call it, it was good. VERDICT: Thumbs up!

58. Page France - Wow, I listened to "Bush," and it satisfied my current indie/folk craving with something a little different. I love it! VERDICT: Thumbs way up!

59. Fallen From The Sky - The music wouldn't load, will try again later.

60. New Year's Day - They don't have a myspace! Their site though is . I heard "I Was Right" and I really like it. Reminiscent of Paramore but mainly in the whole female-lead-vocalist sense. VERDICT: Thumbs way up!

Saturday, March 24, 2007

More of the same...

Continuing AP's 100 bands list...

34. Teddybears - I've heard of this band, and I believe Jeff has a song by them. I recall it being cool. And I know they did a remix on the Snakes on a Plane soundtrack that rocked. In fact, I'm sure Jeff has "Punkrocker" which features Iggy Pop. It's a good song. I also listened to "Different Sound" and it was really catchy and cool. VERDICT: Thumbs up!!

35. Death Ships - As usual, I found them on Myspace and just let whatever decided to play go. I heard "Thelma Lou" and it was a cool acoustic song, very indie folk, which is what I'm really loving right now. Therefore, it is awesome. VERDICT: Thumbs way up!!!

36. The Chalets - I heard "No Style" and it was a super catchy indie pop gem. I highly recommend a listen or two. Also, I listened to "Lovepunch" and I know that I've heard it before... the chorus ("I know you love me but you're fucking crazy") is hard to forget. VERDICT: Thumbs way up!!!

37. Olympia - A word of warning: the correct band is the second listed if you search on Myspace. Anyway, I listened to "Bastogne." It was a pretty good song, but if I'm going to be honest it was not a very original sound. I've heard a lot of bands that sound almost exactly like this. VERDICT: One thumb up, one down.

38. Klaxons - Another band I've already heard of! I feel so ahead of the curve! They're quite interesting, and unique. They describe themselves as psychedelic prog pop, and I would go along with that. I really like the song "Gravity's Rainbow." I listened to "Two Receivers" on their Myspace (they're featured today) and I like it. VERDICT: Thumbs up!

39. The Dear Hunter - I have the song "City Escape" and I really really like it. They're different, electronic stuff. AP says they're like Say Anything, and I don't know how much I agree but as in the awesomeness factor, it's true. I also heard "Black Sandy Beaches" and it was cool too. VERDICT: Thumbs way up!!!

40. Have Heart - I listened to "Armed with a Mind" and all I can say is, why God why are there so many hardcore bands? VERDICT: Thumbs down.

41. The Knife - My friend Zach is into The Knife and therefore I've heard them before. Also, they are said to sound like Royksopp, who I've recently gotten into. So I listened to "Marble House" and it was absolutely awesome. VERDICT: Thumbs way up!!

42. The Human Abstract - What? A band like A7X AND DragonForce? Can this be possible? To find out, I listened to "Mea Culpa." They sound more like A7X to me, but nonetheless they rock. Also they're apparently on Warped Tour this year?! VERDICT: Thumbs up!

43. The Showdown - I listened to "Temptation Come My Way" and I can only say: oh no! Not another Metallica! But I have to admit this band is better. VERDICT: Thumbs somewhat down.

44. Nothington - I heard "Going Home," and it is kind of punk/grunge stuff, and I suppose it's good for that particular genre, which I am not all that fond of. VERDICT: One thumb up, one down.

45. My Latest Novel - Someone, probably Zach, told me about this band but I hadn't heard them before. So I listened to "Pretty in a Panic" and it was pretty much amazing. I do see similarities to Arcade Fire, and very slightly to Sigur Ros. VERDICT: Thumbs way up!!!

46. Behold... the Arctopus - I listened to "PAINcave" and it was some brutal, crazy metal. And I kind of like it. VERDICT: Thumbs sort of up.

47. Boys Like Girls - I listened to/watched the video for "Hero/Heroine" and I like it. It's catchy pop/emo/rock stuff, but it's a little different than everything else... more rock inspired I think. VERDICT: Thumbs quite a bit up!!!

48. Mayday Parade - I was looking this up and thinking 'oh boy another Panic!/FOB sound alike, but this band was a pleasant surprise. "When I Get You Home..." is a pretty catchy, cool song. I also liked "Your Song." VERDICT: Thumbs up!

49. Pistolita - Ooh, I like piano rock! Imagine MCR with a piano and a little less dark. It's good stuff, check out "Beni Accident." VERDICT: Thumbs way up!

50. Drop Dead, Gorgeous - Their somewhat clever name doesn't make up for my anti-hardcore sentiments. But you don't have to take my word for it, you can see them on Warped Tour this summer. VERDICT: Thumbs down.

HEY! I'm halfway through! Come back later for more.

Thursday, March 8, 2007

AP's 100 Bands... post 2.

13. Fucked Up - The label, Jade Tree, has a poor quality video up for downloading of the song "Baiting the Public Knitting Factory." It's hardcore punk, and I don't like it. VERDICT: Thumbs down.

14. Whitey - You can find a video for "Non Stop" at the Dim Mak site. It's pretty cool, and I'm almost certain I've heard it on XM before. I like it! Good indie electronica. VERDICT: Thumbs up!

15. Ludo - Their site,, has lots of media to check out. "Hum Along" is catchy, they sound kind of like Motion City Soundtrack and Sugarcult, like AP says. I like it. VERDICT: Thumbs way up!

16. Busdriver - There's a promo vid on the Epitaph site, and it's so awesome! Great indie/rap/hip-hop stuff. And I am not the biggest fan of rap. But I like it a lot! VERDICT: Thumbs way up!!!

17. Car Bomb - I listened to "His Eyes" on Relapse, which is the same label as Agoraphobic Nosebleed, The Dillinger Escape Plan, and Pig Destroyer. It's kind of crazy, and I like it! VERDICT: Thumbs up!

18. This Moment In Black History - To hear them, go to I'm not really sure how to describe it... You just need to go listen. VERDICT: One thumb up, one down.

19. Blackpool Lights - I also found this band on Myspace ( I heard "Empty Tank," and it was quite cool. I'd call it pop rock. VERDICT: Thumbs up!

20. The Forecast - I have heard this band before, and I like them. I thought I had a song or two, but I was mistaken. Anyway, it's good. VERDICT: Thumbs up!

21. The Drones - It's closest to punk, I'd say... although self-described as psychobilly. I heard "Lady in Red" on their Myspace ( Not my favorite. VERDICT: Thumbs down.

22. 8MM - AP says they sound like Massive Attack... and I dig some Massive Attack. has some tracks. I listened to "Liar," and it did not disappoint. VERDICT: Thumbs way up!

23. Holy Roman Empire - Their site is I heard "The Ace" and it is pretty much awesome. Described as indie rock, this band is very promising. VERDICT: Thumbs way up!

24. Cancer Bats - They weren't on the artist list for Abacus, so I feel lied to. I found them at, and heard "French Immersion." It's some pretty metal stuff. I approve. VERDICT: Thumbs up!

25. Midnight Movies - New Line Records has the song "Patient Eye" up. It's pretty cool, I'm not sure how to classify it - indie rock? Anyway, fairly good. VERDICT: Thumbs up.

26. Heavy Heavy Low Low - On you will hear some interesting thrash metal. I listened to "Tell Shannon," and I'm not all that into thrash, sorry. Verdict: Thumbs down.

27. The Confession - I decided at this point to stop going to the label sites that are listed and just use Myspace. So unless otherwise noted, you can search for all these bands on Myspace. Anyway, about this band: they do sound like A7X, and I dig that kind of metal. VERDICT: Thumbs way up!

28. Professor Murder - They describe themselves as 'happy hardcore' which is highly amusing. They're interesting... I think I like it? VERDICT: One thumb up, one wavering.

29. Cold War Kids - Ooh, I have "Hang Me Up to Dry" already, I'm pretty sure I heard it on XM and it is quite amazing. They have a pretty original sound. VERDICT: Thumbs way up!

30. The Kooks - "You Don't Love Me" starts out really dancy and catchy, and stays that way. I really like it! VERDICT: Thumbs way up!

31. The Photo Atlas - Anything compared to ATDI deserves some attention. So I listened to "Handshake Heart Attack" and while it does resemble ATDI a little, it's a little more dancy. I like it! VERDICT: Thumbs way up!

32. Circa Survive - Yes, AP, I know Circa Survive. We are on pretty great terms. VERDICT: Thumbs way up!

33. Totimoshi - I heard "Viva Zapata" and it sounds pretty cool. VERDICT: Thumbs up!

Wednesday, March 7, 2007

Join Me on a Magical Journey...

I'm checking out AP's 100 Bands You Need to Know in 2007! This will probably take up a few posts. Remember, these are just preliminary judgments, I won't have heard more than a couple songs by each band.

1. The Mint Chicks - The label's website had a link for a Youtube vid for their song "Welcome to Nowhere." The sound quality was terrible, but it seemed pretty catchy. However, I wasn't all that impressed. The sample for "Crazy? Yes! Dumb? No!" on Purevolume sounded pretty good. They sound like catchy britpop (except they're from New Zealand). Similar to The Killers, The Pink Spiders, and slightly reminiscent of Arctic Monkeys (but probably not as good). VERDICT: One thumb up, one down.

2. Locksley - The band's site,, has some good quality music videos. Apparently their song "Why Not Me" is the theme to some stupid-ass MTV show (did I mention I loathe MTV?). Nevertheless, it's a great, catchy song. I agree with AP, it does remind me of Hot Hot Heat. VERDICT: Thumbs way up!!!

3. Shook Ones - The label site has the song "Pheasant" up, but it wouldn't load. Also, I couldn't find them on Purevolume, though their search feature is godawful. VERDICT: Shrug of shoulders.

4. All Time Low - I've actually heard of this band! I have the song "Break Out! Break Out!" and I am quite fond of it. Catchy pop-punk, sounds like Cartel, etc. VERDICT: Thumbs up!

5. Silversun Pickups - XM has been playing the song "Lazy Eye" obsessively on quite a few stations, so I've heard it a few times. And it is amazing. Great indie stuff! VERDICT: Thumbs way up!!

6. Annuals - Had to go to PV for this one. The song "Brother" is pretty cool, reminds me a little of ...And You Will Know Us... Actually all the songs on there are cool. AP said they're similar to Arcade Fire, I wonder if that's because they too have a whole bunch of members... VERDICT: Thumbs way up!

7. Ad Astra Per Aspera - Listened to "A Fish Would Much Rather Swim" on their label's site, Sonic Unyon. Good stuff! Any band touted to be similar to the Blood Brothers deserves a big high five. Sounds a little like Cursive on The Ugly Organ, too. VERDICT: Thumbs way up!!

8. The Almost - I'm not a huge fan of Underoath, but nevertheless I like them, and was excited to hear Aaron Gillespie's side project. And I am not at all disappointed. Listen to "Say This Sooner" on PV. VERDICT: Thumbs way up!

9. Maylene and the Sons of Disaster - I've got the song "Tough as John Jacobs," and it's a pretty cool song. They're kind of southern rock mixed with a little hardcore and a bit of general metal. As the VP of W&M's metal club, I approve. VERDICT: Thumbs up!

10. Wax On Radio - I was really excited to check out this band because AP said they sounded like Radiohead, Muse, and Arcade Fire. The Downtown Records site had "Today I Become a Realist" up. And I do hear a little of those in there. VERDICT: Thumbs way up!

11. Quietdrive - I love Quietdrive already! I have "Rise From the Ashes," it's really catchy and amazing. Though I have no clue how I got it. My best guess is that it was on an iTunes Back to School Sampler. VERDICT: Thumbs way up!!!

12. As Tall As Lions - They're on the same label that Brand New started out on... and also The Receiving End of Sirens. Doesn't that tell you enough? Right, I also listened to Ghost of York and I am quite impressed. VERDICT: Thumbs way up!!!

Tuesday, February 27, 2007

What I'm into right now.

Well, I just managed to load all my purchased song onto my computer from my iPod, so I now have a lot of tasty new old songs! Here's some stuff I'm really liking right now.

...And You Will Know Us By The Trail of Dead - Worlds Apart
I had forgotten I even owned this album, and in fact I'm not even sure if I ever listened to it. It was one of those things I acquired from my brother, that I never really got into at the time. I haven't really listened to this all together, but nevertheless it's an outstanding album. Notable songs include "Will You Smile Again For Me," "A Classic Art Showcase," "The Rest Will Follow," and "The Summer of '91." Oh, hell, the whole damn album is great. I'm not really sure how to describe this band... you're just going to have to listen to it.

AFI - Decemberunderground
I was given this by my ex who was obsessed with AFI. Until recently it has gone by severely underappreciated by me. But this is an amazing work or art by a band I've always counted on to have poetic lyrics and great music. This is no disappointment, in fact it's the best I've heard from them. Especially check out "The Interview," "Love Like Winter," "The Missing Frame," and "37 MM."

Brand New - The Devil And God Are Raging Inside Me
If there was ever a perfect album, this may well be it. The lyrics are out of this world, and though the songs are mostly the depressing, emotional stuff you'd expect for Brand New, I can still listen to this any time in any mood and I will be in awe. Faves: "Jesus," "Limousine (MS Rebridge)," and "The Archers Bows have Broken."

Breaking Benjamin - Phobia
I like Breaking Benjamin. This newest is not particularly different than the other albums, but it's still quite good. Listen to "Evil Angel" and "Topless."

Coldplay - Parachutes
I must admit, I just got this off a friend. My other friend who is a huge Coldplay fan kept telling me how their early stuff was their best, and I finally figured out he was right. Best tracks: "Shiver," "Sparks," and "Trouble."

Cursive - The Ugly Organ
The best band with a cellist I've ever heard. Enough said. Check out "Some Red Handed Sleight of Hand," "Art is Hard," and "Driftwood: A Fairy Tale."

Fall Out Boy - Infinity on High
Okay, so I've only heard a few songs from this, but it's extremely promising. "Hum Hallelujah" and "Thriller" might just give you an idea of what I mean.

Iron & Wine - The Creek Drank The Cradle
Iron & Wine is AMAZING. I never thought I would listen to something you could probably call folk, but there you go. Best tracks: "Lion's Mane," "Bird Stealing Bread," "Upward Over the Mountain," and "Weary Memory."

Regina Spektor - Begin To Hope
My boyfriend introduced me to Regina Spektor, and now I am absolutely in love with her music. She's a Russian singer-songwriter who plays piano, and her songs are extremely personal. All I can say is WOW. My faves are "Better," "Samson," "Fidelity," and "Apres Moi." I also have Eleven Eleven but haven't listened to all of it, and Soviet Kitsch wouldn't work on my comp unfortunately.

Say Anything - ...Is a Real Boy
Just... wow. So sarcastic and just... awesome. You have to kind of get used to Max Bemis' voice, but once you do, you can't stop listening. I play the entire CD on repeat.

And a band in general: Our Lady Peace. I've loved Gravity for a while, and I recently got Spiritual Machines, Happiness Is Not a Fish You Can Catch, and Clumsy from my friend. And it is fantastic.