Posted on2016 May 05|Comments Off on Auditory Flashbacks: Sea Songs and More
When I began going through my posts as part of back-end maintenance the other day, I realized I haven’t done an article on sea songs yet. Considering how deeply that genre runs in my heart and my connections with the sea, I feel a bit silly at not doing it sooner.
So here’s a smattering of old favourites. I’ve searched a while for special versions of some of these songs, which you’ll notice below:
Back in my university days, I jumped at the opportunity to be a volunteer for our showing of The Vagina Monologues. I loved the format of that performance and the way it engaged the audience, and I’ve been on the hunt ever since for similarly off-beat, hard-hitting content that gets dialogue started about important issues.
So, when I found this video by Savannah Brown in a friend’s FB feed today, I couldn’t resist posting it here. Her unpretentious, cut-to-the-bone style makes lingering points and delves deeply into our collective memory on the pathological sexualization, rampant objectification, and victim-blaming that goes on all too often as a feature of the social fabric in North America.
I’m also throwing in an older video she made called, “What Guys Look For In Girls.” The message, again, is too important to leave out:
Posted on2016 February 09|Comments Off on Auditory Flashbacks: Cauda Pavonis, Adversus, Flesh Field, Aesthetic Perfection, Aïboforcen, Aeon Sable, The Birthday Massacre, Battery, and Qntal
After more than ten hours of hard work, the Links page is finally up to date, along with a slew of new additions to the music section. Artists beginning with letters A through F are complete, with each entry researched prior to listing in order to make the most useful resources available to readers who are interested in exploring further. In cases where an artist has retired or gone on hiatus, I’ve tried to link to resources that offer the most complete overview of their musical works.
Now that that’s finished, ON TO THE MUSIC!
Starting off tonight’s round of offerings is the awesome, driving sound of the one and only Cauda Pavonis:
Next up, we have the ultimate graveyard serenade: Adversus’ Seelenwinter. The song is an old favourite of mine, and seeing the video hits even harder than anything before.
Those voices, those melodies … they’re eight blissful, soaring minutes of pure lovelorn flight. I adore every part of it. Studio version here. Frankly, though, I think this one works much better live.
Posted on2016 February 03|Comments Off on Auditory Flashbacks: the Music of Ost+Front, Megaherz, and Lord of the Lost
Somewhere along the way, my listening list got so large it hit that magical tipping point where it became its own novel. By the end of this post, it will officially be 442 artists. Even the fairly robust WordPress Editor was having issues last time I tried to add more band links. I’ve posted *maybe* a quarter of them here on my site by now, but made full-fledged discussion posts for far too few.
That’s going to change this year, as I’ll eventually get around to revamping my content a bit, along with a few changes to update frequency and post format.
But for now … LET’S DISCOVER SOME MUSIC!
Today’s theme is Neue Deutsche Härte, and to that end, I have three submissions for your listening pleasure.
First, there’s Ost+Front. What can I really say here? Their stage presence is the result of someone sneaking into a genetic engineering lab to combine Rammstein’s DNA with the entire cast of Dead Snow. Nazi zombies with awesome voices? You’d better believe it.
There’s “passing away with style,” and then there’s “I’m going for one more encore, and I’m not just going to love this, I’m gonna strike the boldest dot imaginable on the exclamation point that is my life.”
When I heard about David Bowie’s death, I partly expected to hear about him doing something notable or dramatic on the way out — ain’t that just like him.
The end is near, the odds are tangibly impossible, and even as the world comes crashing down around his ears, here he is on set casting a music video, singing with that same sweet, silvery passion that’s defined so many of his life’s other accomplishments.
Not florid prose nor mournful discourse nor simple wonder can properly describe the inspiration and beauty in such a gesture. Lyrics here. Links to the Canadian and American Cancer Societies as well, because why not contribute?
Now, if you haven’t clicked PLAY on the above video, you’d better turn off everything else around you right now, and load it up.
And don’t forget the encore …
May you be well remembered, and remembered well in all the ages to come.
When one takes a bird’s-eye view of battle and civilian casualties by the numbers, the results as shown above are shocking.
All of this helps one maintain a healthy sense of perspective, and reveals that not only do present-day news channels and distributors exaggerate the frequency and ferocity of conflicts on a regular basis by flooding the public space with over-reporting and embellishments, but we almost invariably are fed information to arrive at a mindset that makes us forget on a daily basis the major powers have not fought one another since World War 2, and today’s war deaths (military and civilian) are minuscule in comparison.
This is the title track from their 2010 album (lyrics here). If this isn’t pure, wild, refined beauty, I don’t know what is.
Looking back in time, Hungry Lucy has fit my tastes in a decidedly odd way over the years. I’ve been a fan of their work since at least 2000 with the advent of Apparitions, but somehow their original work didn’t end up in my collection until more recently.
Posted on2015 May 14|Comments Off on Tea: the Perfect Metaphor for Consent
In light of all the news stories discussing people who’ve had problems conceptualizing sexual consent or establishing reasonably safe boundaries for engaging in sex, these animators came up with a novel way of explaining it.
Here’s consent rewritten as something anyone can readily understand and communicate to their partners:
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Posted on2015 March 13|Comments Off on A Primer on Global Warming and Climate Change
Chances are you’ve heard some mention in the media or among government in recent years about the topics of global warming, extreme weather, or climate change. I won’t do scientists the indignity of considering the matter a ‘debate’ much less use this word, because it would imply we’re still at the stage of trying to see if the meter swings one way or the other on this important issue. No, much to the surprise of many, science has developed itself extensively and spoken in great certainty: there is no longer any debate, and global warming and climate change are both real and caused by humans.
So if there’s one post you peek at on the subject today, let it be this one.
Posted on2015 February 02|Comments Off on Understanding Electronics: The (Non)Magic of Free Energy
I figured I’d make a brief post to wet my readers’ feet in the vast pond of electronics engineering. Here’s a really interesting video about the subject of free energy, narrated by a specialist who actually works in and understands electronics, and is able to point out in fairly common terms why and how free-energy devices are not possible to create.
TL;DR — it’s not because there exists any set of special workarounds to our existing laws of physics, or that alternate laws of physics exist for well-known phenomena that are somehow waiting to be written. Rather, it’s almost universally the case that people, even well-meaning ones, tend to misinterpret units of measure, fail to properly conceptualize mathematical equations, and fail to incorporate numerous scientific procedures and principles in their work. To add fuel to the fire, most people who champion free energy devices generally choose to spend their time with those of the same mindset, an effect which in time multiplies the shaky deviations of comprehension and foundational studies, and further diminishes the capacity to be self-correcting.
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Posted on2015 January 19|Comments Off on Sheep Pong and Other Feats of Engineering
So, I loaded up Facebook this morning and saw this in a friend’s feed:
This is SERIOUSLY awesome.
There’s no easy way to explain the efforts that probably went into making this video, or the huge amount of time it must have taken to set things up and get them working just right, but as a part-time home tinkerer who owns a few cases of electronic and LED parts, I can appreciate the extremely difficult, beautiful feat they’ve done with this.
Good work, and keep doing what you love. My hat’s off to you, sirs.
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Posted on2014 May 30|Comments Off on Auditory Flashbacks: This Ascension
It is presently five o’clock in the morning, and I just arrived home from work.
Along the way, I was hit with a realization, the same one I’ve had many a time but never really shared here before: finishing these late shifts always ends with a really quiet ride home, and it’s something I’ve grown to appreciate. It feels like cycling through a dead city after the zombie apocalypse has come and gone, with not a soul in sight unless you count wildlife, and even that tends to be pretty isolated and sparse in the three-to-five window of time.
Actually, I love it. The world just seems like it’s teetering on the brink of something amazing at moments like those, so full of quiet possibilities, so very ready to burst forth into a flurry of life and motion.
In the spirit of that solitude, here’s a blast from the past from a band who (sadly) isn’t together any longer but whose memories and glorious sound will always cast a comfortable shadow in these halls … This Ascension!
And you’ve got to admit, there’s hardly a better sound to accompany a sinking crescent moon and indigo skies.
Posted on2014 May 22|Comments Off on YouTube Treasures: Space Oddity at the ISS
A few years ago, I was floored by Collide’s awesome rendition of David Bowie’s “Space Oddity.” Then, much more recently, I found this version by Canadian astronaut Chris Hadfield in the International Space Station during his final mission.
Talk about going out with a bang. He tunes the lyrics ever so slightly to the mission … and suddenly the Internet explodes with reverberations of his sheer awesomeness.
This is how such a beautiful song was meant to be performed …
Earlier this week, I came home from work late one night only to bear witness to one of the most amazing spectacles I’ve seen in a long time: a family of raccoons out on the town for a night of fun and mayhem.
At first I noticed a noise in one of the bushes outside my house, and when this prompted me to take a look, I quickly discovered a pair of adult raccoons wrestling one another in the midst of a large mud puddle in a nearby vacant lot. Having realized they were being watched, they quickly broke it up and went back to scavenging for food.
It wasn’t long before they were at it again, this time in a tree! A round of loud chittering and squealing broke the silence, this time going on for quite some time, so I grabbed my camera and flashlight and headed for the source of the noise. What followed are two of the most fascinating videos I’ve captured in ages.
I should also add that despite my first impressions, the raccoons’ actions seem to convey something more along the lines of horseplay, play-fighting, or at most, establishing the pecking order. These little guys don’t seem to be causing each other any harm, but damn can they crank up the volume!
This has been one of the many reasons I love Victoria: the wildlife is extremely abundant here, and if you look hard enough, there’s always something cool going on.