Saturday, March 30, 2013

Happy Birthday ERIC CLAPTON (video)

Eric Patrick Clapton, CBE, (born March 30 1945) is an English guitarist and singer-songwriter. He is the only three-time inductee to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame: once as a solo artist, and separately as a member of The Yardbirds and Cream. Clapton has been referred to as one of the most important and influential guitarists of all time. Clapton ranked second in Rolling Stone magazine's list of the "100 Greatest Guitarists of All Time" and fourth in Gibson's Top 50 Guitarists of All Time.

In the mid-1960s, Clapton departed from the Yardbirds to play blues with John Mayall & the Bluesbreakers. In his one-year stay with Mayall, Clapton gained the nickname "Slowhand". Immediately after leaving Mayall, Clapton joined Cream, a power trio with drummer Ginger Baker and bassist Jack Bruce in which Clapton played sustained blues improvisations and "arty, blues-based psychedelic pop." For most of the 1970s, Clapton's output bore the influence of the mellow style of J.J. Cale and the reggae of Bob Marley. His version of Marley's "I Shot the Sheriff" helped reggae reach a mass market. Two of his most popular recordings were "Layla", recorded by Derek and the Dominos, another band he formed, and Robert Johnson's "Crossroads", recorded by Cream. Following the death of his son Conor in 1991, Clapton's grief was expressed in the song "Tears in Heaven", which featured in his Unplugged album.

A recipient of seventeen Grammy Awards, and the Brit Award for Outstanding Contribution to Music, in 2004 Clapton was awarded a CBE at Buckingham Palace for services to music. In 1998, Clapton, a recovering alcoholic and drug addict, founded the Crossroads Centre on Antigua, a medical facility for recovering substance abusers.

source: wikipedia


Thursday, March 28, 2013

SERENITY - Wings of Madness (video)

I've been a fan of SERENITY since 2007 and even have a copy of their Starseed V.R. demo EP (2003/2004). As I await my copy of their newly released album, War Of Ages, the band just released a new video for "Wings Of Madness". This is the debut of the band's new co-lead vocalist Clémentine Delauney, former touring member now full-time.

LTD Edition Digipak + 2 Bonus Tracks:

From wikipedia:
was founded in Tyrol, Austria in January 2001 receiving "fine reviews" for their first demo "Starseed V.R.". In 2003/2004, three of the original members left the band. The replacement members were contacted throughout February to March 2004. The band's next demo, "Engraved Within", was released in April 2005 and was met with positive reviews from such reputable magazines as Germany's Metal Hammer. Their first full album, "Words Untold and Dreams Unlived", was released in Europe on April 27, 2007 and May 8 in the USA and Canada through Napalm Records. The band toured Europe in support of "Words Untold and Dreams Unlived" with Morgana Lefay, Threshold and later Kamelot. The second full length album entitled "Fallen Sanctuary" was produced from December 2007 to April 2008 and was released August 29, 2008 in Europe and September 9 in the USA. The CD contains the band's first video clip "Velatum" which was shot by director Robert Geir and "Wildruf" camera crew from July 2 to 5, launched online on July 17 to promote the upcoming album.

older videos:

source: Serenity


Wednesday, March 27, 2013

KICK ASS 2 - Hit Girl featured in new trailer (video)

As a huge fan of the first film, I cannot wait for the next chapter! 

If you have not seen Kick Ass yet, go now.  
One of the best "superhero" movies from a whole different perspective.

Hit Girl rocks! (and it looks like she is a major part of the sequel!)
KICK ASS 2 will be released worldwide in August


THE WOLVERINE: International Trailer (video)

Looks like we will finally get a worthy Wolverine movie!
(I was always a Cyclops fan and feel he got the short end of the stick in the movies, but that's another story.)  

James Mangold is directing and I have enjoyed his work on Identity, Kate & Leopold and 3:10 to Yuma. (He also directed: Girl, Interrupted, Knight and Day, Walk The Line, Copland, etc)

The WOLVERINE opens in July!


Tuesday, March 26, 2013

OBLIVION - a home built at 3,000 feet above the ground (video)

I am actually looking forward to this flick.  Interesting premise, young director with vision... great sci-fi has been made of lesser ingredients. and it has Morgan Freeman!

 Oblivion is an upcoming 2013 science fiction film based on the Radical Comics graphic novel Oblivion by Joseph Kosinski and directed and co-produced by Kosinski. It stars Tom Cruise, Olga Kurylenko, Andrea Riseborough, Morgan Freeman, Melissa Leo, Zoë Bell, and Nikolaj Coster-Waldau. The film was initially scheduled to release on July 10, 2013. Since the 3D re-release of Jurassic Park was set for a July 19, 2013 release date, the project was moved forward to April 19, 2013.

According to Kosinski, Oblivion pays homage to science fiction films of the 1970s.

Joseph Kosinski (born May 3, 1974) is an American television commercial and feature film director best known for his computer graphics and computer generated imagery work. He made his big-screen directorial debut with the Disney Digital 3-D science fiction film Tron: Legacy, the sequel to the 1982 film Tron. His previous work has primarily been with CGI related television commercials including the "Starry Night" commercial for Halo 3 and the award-winning "Mad World" commercial for Gears of War.

source: wikipedia


Happy Birthday RICHARD TANDY (video)

Richard Tandy (born March 26, 1948, in Birmingham, England), is a British musician, best known as the keyboard player in the rock band, Electric Light Orchestra ("ELO"). His palette of keyboards (including Mini Moog, clavinet, mellotron, and piano) was an important ingredient in the group's sound, notably on the albums A New World Record, Out of the Blue, Discovery, and Time.

Educated at Moseley School, where he first met future band-mate Bev Bevan, Tandy would later be reunited with Bevan in 1968 when he played the harpsichord on The Move's number one chart-topper "Blackberry Way". Later, in 1972, Tandy was the bass player in the first live line-up of ELO, then switching to keyboards when Jeff Lynne decided that their live sound needed improvement. Tandy was often seen on stage playing the stereotypical 1970s prog-rock stack of keyboards, with bass pedals under his feet. As well as ELO, he has collaborated musically with Jeff Lynne on many projects, among them songs for the Electric Dreams soundtrack, Lynne's solo album Armchair Theatre and Lynne produced Dave Edmunds "Information". Before joining ELO Tandy played with the groups The Uglys and Balls.

In 1985 Tandy formed the Tandy Morgan Band featuring Dave Morgan and Martin Smith, both of whom had worked with ELO in live concerts. In 1985, the Tandy Morgan band released the concept album Earthrise. A remastered version was released on CD on the Rock Legacy label in 2011. A follow-up to Earthrise with previously unpublished tracks was released as "The BC Collection", containing one track written by Tandy: "Enola Sad".

Tandy is featured on all ELO albums with the exception of the first. He was also credited as co-arranger on the album Eldorado onwards. Some of the ideas for the ELO album titles thought up by Richard Tandy were A New World Record, Out of the Blue, and Discovery. In 2012 Tandy teamed up again with Jeff Lynne to record another ELO project, a live set of the bands biggest hits recorded at Jeff Lynne's Bungalow Palace home recording studio, which was broadcast on TV.

source: wikipedia


Friday, March 22, 2013

NI NO KUNI - So far, so great! (video)

I promised an update, sorry it took so long. Now 70 hours in and still not done with everything. I love this game! It is refreshing to play a game whose hero is out only to help people and, in the end, save two worlds.  

As much as I enjoy Japanese Role Playing Games (JRPGs), a lot of times I hit a "wall", not able to go further in the game until I go "back out into the world" and "grind" (level up).  And if the game's battle system is more frustrating than fun, I tend to give up.

Fortunately, Ni No Kuni is a blast to play.  There were the usual RPG frustrations of not always knowing exactly what to do to trigger the next event, but they were very infrequent.  Once you get past a certain part in the story, travel becomes much easier and the whole world opens up to you.

I finished the game's main storyline in 55 hours, which opened up even more things to do.  If you do not finish the game, you will not see some of the best parts. 

Every gamer owes it to his or herself to play this game but if you really hate JRPGs, Ni No Kuni will probably not change your mind. Everyone else who owns a PS3 should grab this game and dive in!

More after I fully complete the game...


Sigur Rós - Brennisteinn (video)

wow, this was an unexpected surprise today: 
the powerful new video from Sigur Rós

from the band:
introducing our new video brennisteinn, directed by andrew huang. from the forthcoming nine-track album kveikur, our first as a trio.

from wikipedia:
Sigur Rós (Icelandic pronunciation: [ˈsɪːɣʏr ˈroːus]) are an Icelandic ambient/post-rock band from Reykjavík, who have been active since 1994. Known for their ethereal sound, frontman Jónsi Birgisson's falsetto vocals, and the use of bowed guitar, the band's music is also noticeable for its incorporation of classical and minimalist aesthetic elements. The band is named after Jónsi's sister Sigurrós Elin.

source: Sigur Rós



Paying tribute can be fun! (video)

To be totally honest, I am not the biggest fan of "covers" or remakes.  In music, movies, etc, it is hard to improve on art. Every once in a while, something else interesting can be done but, most of the time the true creativity is in the original inspiration.

Two recently released cover albums have seasoned veterans paying tribute to some of their favorite tracks by having fun with them.  If you like hard rock, I can recommend Adrenaline Mob's Coverta and Anthrax's Anthems, both are available now.  Excellent production values and stellar playing gives a taste of the artists that inspired these bands.

Adrenaline Mob is a heavy metal supergroup formed by singer Russell Allen (Symphony X), guitarist Mike Orlando and drummer Mike Portnoy (ex-Dream Theater). The band was formed in early 2011 and performed their first live performance on June 24, 2011 at the Hiro Ballroom in New York City, with the addition of bass player Paul Di Leo (Fozzy), and rhythm guitarist Rich Ward (Stuck Mojo/Fozzy). They released a YouTube video of a cover version of the Black Sabbath classic "The Mob Rules" on June 27, 2011 to promote the band. On New Year's Eve 2011, Adrenaline Mob announced via their Facebook page that they would release their full length studio album, Omertà, on March 13, 2012, and also revealed the album art.

On January 7, 2012, the band announced the departures of Rich Ward and Paul Di Leo due to scheduling conflicts with their other bands. On February 8, 2012, it was announced that John Moyer (Disturbed) is Adrenaline Mob's new bass player. John has made his onstage debut with the group on March 12, at New York City’s Hiro Ballroom, a day before the release of the band's debut full-length album, Omertà.

On January 31, 2013, the band released a cover EP entitled "Covertá" on March 12, 2013.

Anthrax is an American heavy metal band from New York City, New York, United States, formed in 1981. Founded by guitarists Scott Ian and Danny Lilker, the band has since released ten studio albums and 20 singles, and an EP featuring Public Enemy. The band was one of the most popular of the 1980s thrash metal scene. When thrash metal began to gain a major following in the mid-to-late 1980s, Anthrax were dubbed one of the "big four" of thrash metal alongside Metallica, Megadeth and Slayer. They were also one of the early thrash metal bands to sign to a major label (Island Records, in 1985). As of 2004, Anthrax sold over 2.5 million records in the U.S since the beginning of the SoundScan era and as of 2012, they have sold over 15 million records worldwide.

The band line-up has been changed numerous times; following the departure of drummer Dave Weiss and bassist Kenny Kushner, several musicians replaced both band members' roles, though Paul Kahn and Greg Walls were the first to do so. In addition to this aspect, there were multiple vocalists involved in Anthrax, with Neil Turbin, Joey Belladonna and John Bush being among the frontmen of the band. Scott Ian, however, has been in the band since its formation. Ian and Charlie Benante, who joined Anthrax in 1983, are the only constant members that appear on every album. Bassist Frank Bello has played on every album with exception of the band's debut. Classic singer Joey Belladonna has returned to the band and appears on Worship Music which is his first studio album with the band since 1990's Persistence of Time.

source: wikipedia


Thursday, March 21, 2013

Happy Birthday ROGER HODGSON (video)

Roger Hodgson (born Charles Roger Pomfret Hodgson, March 21, 1950) is a British musician and songwriter, best known as the former co-frontman, and founding member, of progressive rock band Supertramp.

Hodgson composed and sang the majority of the band's hits, including "Dreamer", "Give a Little Bit", "The Logical Song", "Breakfast in America", "Take the Long Way Home" and "It's Raining Again".

He left Supertramp in 1983 to pursue a solo career, but after two albums he retired from touring and other industry obligations. In 1997 he returned to doing solo tours, and released a third album in 2000. He is recognised for his tenor singing voice, which became a trademark of his former band Supertramp, and often writes about spiritual and philosophical topics.

source: wikipedia


Wednesday, March 20, 2013

THIS MISERY GARDEN - Siamese Again (video)

 THIS MISERY GARDEN recently shot a new video clip, for 'Siamese Again', a song from forthcoming album Cornerstone, set for a release on April 16th (April 12th in Europe) on Season Of Mist.

Steve / Vocals
Laurent M / Guitar
Antoine / Guitar
Jerome / Bass
Stephan / Drums

from the band:
“We are glad to present the new video "Siamese Again" supporting the upcoming album ‘Cornerstone’!”, guitarist Laurent comments. “The shooting took place in the Swiss Jura area last fall, directed by Mathias Wälti. The thematic may question the feeling of abandonment and the destructive repeating cycles! Your mind will do the rest.”

Formed in Geneva in 2005, This Misery Garden is a dark rock/metal band aiming to deliver a genuine intense music. Melancholy threatening hope, anger defying serenity, all of those blend altogether to create a vivid and illuminating sound.


DUKE NUKEM 3D returns! (video)

It’s been 17 years since Duke Nukem 3D came out and The Duke is long overdue for a comeback! He does so in style today with the surprise release of Duke Nukem 3D: Megaton Edition.

Devolver Digital – publishers of Hotline Miami – have teamed up with 3D Realms and indie developer General Arcade to bring DN3D to Steam. Included are the three expansion packs Duke Caribbean: Life’s a Beach, Duke: Nuclear Winter, and Duke It Out in D.C, but they have also added SteamPlay support across PC and Mac, cloud saving and achievements, and they plan to add Steamworks-enabled multiplayer in the near future!

One of the best early first-person shooters, Duke Nukem is back!

from wikipedia:

Duke Nukem is a video game series focusing on its protagonist, Duke Nukem. Originally created by Apogee Software Ltd./3D Realms as a series of video games for the PC, the franchise expanded to games released for various consoles by third party developers. In 2010, the rights of the franchise were acquired by Gearbox Software, who completed the development of Duke Nukem Forever and released it on June 10, 2011 in Europe and Australia and on June 14, 2011 in North America. The voice actor for Duke Nukem is Jon St. John.

source: PC Gamer


Tuesday, March 19, 2013

This first-person short film will blow you away! (video)

If you are a fan of 

-first-person video games 
-John Woo movies 

watch this short film from Ilya Naishuller

Warning: extremely violent!

(stick with it, it gets pretty wild...)


Monday, March 18, 2013

THE CROODS - My Review (video)

When I go to see a movie in the local cinema, it is usually after a lot of research and deliberation. Is it one that can wait for viewing in our home theater or does it require the theater experience?  More often than not, waiting to enjoy a movie on our very capable Blu-ray/Plasma setup is the way to go...and far less expensive.

Two weeks ago, I won an invite to a sneak preview of Olympus Has Fallen from IGN and gofobo, but it was a Wednesday evening, an hour away in Miami...just didn't seem worth the drive.  Because of my account on, I was also invited to a preview of THE CROODS this past Saturday morning at our favorite theater close by.

 Having not even seen a trailer for the movie, I checked Rotten Tomatoes where THE CROODS was hovering around 60% positive, with ony a few reviews posted. (it has since risen to over 80%!) Most reviewers thought the film would play better to younger viewers, with little for adults to enjoy.  Lisa wanted to see it and although I thought I would hate it, I said nothing and went. How bad could it be, right?

Boy, am I glad I did as THE CROODS is one of the better animated films we have seen recently. Although it will not give Pixar's best a run for their money, THE CROODS is a very entertaining prehistoric experience.
Surprisingly, there are no talking animals and I had no idea who the voices were. It took longer than usual to guess, as I was fairly caught up in a beautiful 3D experience wrapped around the simple but effective story. Nicolas Cage, Emma Stone, Ryan Reynolds and Cloris Leachman give great vocal performances throughout and the animation is fast, furious and colorful.  It is one of the better 3D experiences I have had in the cinema.

The children in the packed preview laughed and cheered during the entire film and a round of applause rose during the credits.  Young and old seemed unanimous in giving the film a proverbial "thumbs up".

On my scale, I would give it four out of five and will probably add it to our Blu-ray library.

It opens this in theaters this Friday, March 22nd.


Friday, March 15, 2013

LONG DISTANCE CALLING - "Welcome Change" (audio)

Wow.  This one caught me by surprise on the new LONG DISTANCE CALLING album, The Flood Inside
A team up with Vincent Cavanagh of Anathema!

from wikipedia:

 Long Distance Calling formed in 2006 in Münster. Their melancholic tracks, usually lasting five or more minutes, are mostly instrumental, but some of them feature guest vocalists: Peter Dolving from The Haunted (Built Without Hands, album Satelite Bay) and Jonas Renkse from Katatonia (The Nearing Grave, album Avoid The Light). Long Distance Calling have released two singles and three full-length albums, all of which were received very positively by critics: Satellite Bay (2007), Avoid the Light (2009) and Long Distance Calling (2011). In 2008 the band played at the Rock am Ring and Roadburn festivals; the band toured Germany in 2009. In 2010, Long Distance Calling and Finnish Swallow The Sun supported Katatonia during the New Night Over Europe tour. They most recently supported Protest The Hero on their 2012 European tour.


Thursday, March 14, 2013