Thursday, March 29, 2012

Martini? Stir your drink?

I wasn't certain which topic to approach today, but then a song comes on MP3 player that decided it. I am writing about the greatest album ever made.

Yep, that's the right. The greatest. Pic related.

Devin Townsend is my favorite musician. He is an incredible guitarist and vocalist, but his strongest trait is his songwriting and production skills. He uses a trademark "Wall of Sound" approach to his albums and this has led to his production of some of the biggest metal acts of the last decade.

Terria is very reflective of Townsend's personality. Devin suffers from an intense bipolar disorder and it shows through his music. Some of the most intense, terrible sounds are immediately followed by a long, serene passages. Let's get to the review.

Track 1: Olives. This is a short little intro with an automated voice asking the listener if they would like a martini. Devin, despite taking his music very seriously, can't help but include humor in anything he does.

Track 2: Mountain. The first real song of the album, this is literally the bipolar disorder in a musical state. The music is chaotic and heavy, yet Devin's voice comes in very soft and melodic singing "You are so beautiful to  me..." The highlight of this entire album is the layered vocals he uses to create harmonies and melodies throughout every song. The middle of the track mellows out and creates a few beautiful melodies before resuming the previous chaos. Devin ends the song with some powerful screams that sum up his views of his disorder: "IT'S JUST ANOTHER MOUNTAIN! JUST ANOTHER MOUNTAIN!"

Lyrical highlights: "I've logged so many hours with medications and the dog."
"It's just another mountain."

Track 3: Earth Day. Jesus Christ. If Mountain was the decline of humanity, Earth Day is  the armageddon. It begins with a powerful guitar line before Devin comes in with an incredible vocal line telling us to "Eat your beets... Recycle!" One can never be sure what Devin is really talking about in his songs, but I think he indicates that he think God is a woman, and that he thinks there's a little gay in every straight person. This song is so chaotically beautiful, and it has become one of the trademark songs of his career. When he was off his meds, Devin said he began to see people as pieces of meat, and he uses this line in the song. It ends with Devin assessing his personality with "Ooooh, man overboard."

Lyrical highlights: "Eat your beets, Recycle."
"So just shut your face, and take a seat, cause after all you're just talking meat."

Track 4: Deep Peace. As the tiitle implies, this song is a much needed break after absorbing the chaos of Mountain and Earth Day. Devin chills with an acoustic guitar for the first minute and a half, with birds chirping in the background. He is telling someone that it's alright to not be perfect, and he'll still be there. Then the song takes a slightly bipolar twist, lyrically, with him in turn telling the person he won't be there with an almost mocking tone in his voice. The middle of the song has a beautiful guitar passage and vocal harmony passage after that. Very impressive dynamically.

Lyrical highlights: "It's alright to cry, it's alright to feed on everyone."
"If you ever need me babe, I will be there."

Track 5: Canada. This is the song that came on my MP3 player. Devin's vocals in this song are the best on the album. This is probably my favorite song because I spend so much time driving and this song is about the lonely road. The vocal harmonies here are incredible, and there's a really good bassline in the middle of it. Devin belts some powerful lines here.

Lyrical highlights: "All that time I needed your approval to be me."
"Wake me, please wake me when it's my turn to drive."
"Only the lonely, and maybe John Denver know the Canadian freeway."

Track 6: Down and Under. This a very nice instrumental with some vocal "Oh's" harmonized over a repetitive guitar line. Really nice, but there's not much to say about it.

Track 7: The Fluke. This song picks the pace up with a very pop friendly guitar hook and verse. "I am a fluke in this world..." At the chorus, this song takes an extreme turn and returns to the chaos that resembles earlier shades of the album. Then it takes yet another turn and goes into one of the best vocal sections of the album, before returning to another verse and another chorus. The vocal section has some harmonized "Oh's" over a melancholic guitar line, before having 3 different vocal lines harmonizing over each other, with each saying something different. I wish I could pick his brain to figure out where he gets this shit from.

Lyrical highlights: "I'll have to wade through the bullshit babe just to find my own vision of pearl."
"And I write and I eat and I shit and I sleep
Yes, I eat leafy greens nearly three times a week.
And I'm not unafraid but no longer afraid of you anymore!"

Track 8: Nobody's Here. Another very mellow track, this track defines solitude. It opens up with Devin offering the listener a beer. The lyrics here are very strong and really connect with people going through a tough time. Once again, I think he is singing about his bipolar disorder.

"Tune in and lock yourself away
Relax, it doesn't matter anyway
'Cause it's all a lie, it's true
I think, I guess, I know, I think, I know
...Fuck off...
Why can't I remember?
I feel, feel like there's nobody here
...Feel like there's no more fear
I wanna feel like this for a year...
...Feel like there's nobody here... "

Lyrical highlights: See above.

Track 9: Tiny Tears. Another softer song, this is the weakest track on the album in my opinion, but it's still just a fantastic song. He illustrates how absurd it is that he,;postID=7072547364679062446 or anyone, being a miniscule human can significantly impact another person in such a way to make them cry. The vocal melody is very nice and the guitar lines are reminiscent of a lullaby almost.

Lyrical highlights: "Baby babe don't say a word
In this life you get all that you deserve
I'm sorry that I made you cry
I can't believe that I'm just an ordinary guy"
 "And I'm 29 years old, and I'm a million miles away."

Track 10: Stagnant. The conclusion of the album, and because you're so mentally exhausted from the rollercoaster he has put you through, he has put a much simpler, pop-friendly track here to end it. Devin urges the listener that if you're tired of how shit is, then learn to let things go cause "You don't know how or when it's gonna go." The final chorus ends with an almost choir like vocal performance with probably 12-16 voices going at once. A great way to end the album.

Lyrical highlights: "Summer's here, the sunlight greets the day
The winters gone, there's no more rain today...
And if I could, I'm sure that I would take your breath away"
"It's beautiful, the way it's meant to be...beautiful, but it 'don't do shit' for me...
So peel away a little skin and choke upon the bone"

I realize this was a lengthy post, but I urge anyone who likes music at all to get this album. Regardless of what you like, you will find a song on here that you like. Youtube some of the songs and just listen. Or else, this man will come and get you.

  Ain't he pretty?

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

This is the Axis of Awesome.

More importantly, this makes a mockery of the music industry.

This is something I've been trying to point out to people for a few years, but I suppose this is the direction I should've gone in. Oh well.

On another note, I think after reviewing all of my education, I have found out what I really want to be.

James Bond.

Just look at this guy.

He wears a suit. He plays poker. He carries a PPK legally and fucks everything up.

Unfortunately none of the schools around here offer a James Bond major. I'm also not the appropriate height at only 5'9". Pic related.

I suppose I could wear platform shoes and be a groovy Bond, but that seems like a lot of work and a lot less women.

Fuck it, I'm gonna go write a pop hit.

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

What up

Another non-poker post. I have trouble finding time on days I have class.

Speaking of class, I am in RN school right now. I'm in my first semester, and right now we're going over wound and infection control. I can't say I have ever been more disgusted with the human body than I am right now. I saw a picture of a guy with a foley catheter infection, and half of his dick was missing.

Anyways, enough of that shit.

I also have an associates degree in Business administration and was a few classes away from my B.A., and I am 3 classes way from associate degrees in chemical engineering and pre-pharmacy.

I have spent 5 years in college and have 130 hours to show for it. One of my advisors joked that I should be pursuing my doctorate at this point. It's pretty hard to narrow down what you want to do in life and how to go about it.

tl;dr Ole Miss is one of the top party schools in the country, so I partied my ass off.

Anyways, one day I'll actually come up with some interesting shit. Holla.

Monday, March 26, 2012

Took a break from the grind today to reflect more on my classes and then work on my business plan. I am trying to think of a niche to create in the heavily saturated world of body scrubs, bath salts, and body butters. I know it sounds like a weird product line but it is something that I think could make a little money.

But I'll be damned if the marketer in me can't think of a decent name for it. Any ideas out there? Could earn you a net profit in the future... heh, heh.

Not much to say today, hopefully I'll have some shit to say later.

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Rough day in the grind

Not for poor play. I was playing some Heads Up SnGs (1 on 1 for those who aren't poker savvy) with the $25.00 I loaded today. I had 3 tables going at once, when suddenly, my server began to freeze.

This is a nightmare for the online poker player. By the time that I had connected, I had almost lost all of the games. I was down to 2-300 chips with blinds of 100/200. So I played about 1-2 hands and then, bam, lost.

Money down the drain.

It was most of my bankroll. Now I am reevaluating if I want to deposit onto this site (Merge) again or not. It's a bummer cause my bankroll is very shallow right now, and I can't really afford too many more deposits.

On another note, I have a business venture going with my girlfriend that should result in a little bit of profit. She knows how to make all sorts of bath salts and body scrubs, so I am going to pony up and do the business end for her. Hopefully I can get a site up for these products soon.

Thanks for reading.

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Intro to the Grind

Hello, world.

I am making this blog to document my re-entry into the world of online poker. I am writing this to keep an honest track record of my results.

I've had relative success here and there and turned my initial deposit of $50 to close $4,000 through MTT play. But after Black Friday, like many Americans, I pulled all of my money off of the sites out of fear of the funds being frozen. I was one of the lucky ones, as I was able to get my money in a timely manner.

Since then I have dabbled in live play with little to no net profit. I am not sure what it is about adjusting to live play.

Now, I am a poor college student with little to no monetary support so the winnings I earned helped greatly and for a long time, poker was my main source of income. Now that I am broke again, and the waters seem serene, I figure it's time to step back out into the world. I will be playing on Sportsbook, which is a Merge skin, and I am beginning with a very modest deposit of only $25.

I will deposit tomorrow, and I plan on grinding SnGs and MTTs, starting at the $1 level. The issue with this is that it's not the grind it was a year ago. The sites available to American players have typically poor SnG traffic so the most I can get of the same stakes at the same time, is only about 4-5.

So, here we go.