Questionable Motifs

“Have you got any soul?" you ask. That depends,I feel like saying;some days yes, some days no.A few days ago I was right out;now I've got loads,too much,more than I can handle.I wish I could spread it a bit more evenly,I can see you wouldn't be interested in my internal stock control problems,so I simply point to where I keep the soul I have,right in the archives, just next to the blues..where you will also find some folk,bluegrass,a wee bit ‘o jazz and of course good ol’ rock ‘n’ roll

September 26, 2007

Three Q's. 10 A's.

Does it take over six months to make another post, you ask? (Okay, actually...No one bothered to ask that..Not even moi!)

Does that mean I have gone from March to September without paying heed to that one element that keeps my life sane?!

Do I deserve to get tagged "Most Likely to Live For Music" a few times over on Facebook, when I haven't bought a record in gawd-knows-how many-months?

Hmm..well..All Good questions!

So, to sum up the last few months, with respect to the music...

1. Grew sort of tired of the Italians long enough to take a tour of all the other genres, before finally settling down to lip-synch Banco's incomprehensible "750,000 Anni Fa... L'Amore" umpteen times over!

2. Put myself through hell in order to get my eyes on an RS link for downloading Porcupine Tree's latest album...Only to give it the cold shoulder and not listen to it more than once! (Don't think it was warranted either...Blame it on a sort of extended PMS)

3. Proclaimed how much I adore Geoff Tate over any other vocalist...Not that anyone needed any sort of reaffirmation from me over that oft-repeated opinion of mine!

4. Heard the news that the imbecilic IT dudes at work wanted to "harden" the laptops at work. Figured correctly they wanted to empty all the .mp3 files. Ran from pillar to post to transfer my 30 GB treasure to a new camouflaged territory.

5. Lost my application in the process of 'hardening'. Been sulking ever since. Now I need 'administrator' privileges apparently. My friggin' left a**. (Yes, sulking!Not to mention, angry.)

6. The latest albums of Iron and Wine and Devendra Banhart leaked onto my hidden folders, much before their scheduled release.

7. Cruised past Rhythm House on a visit to town. Swore to stop by before my next weekend binge at Leo's. Sadly, the binges have come and gone. But no CDs have come my way.

8. Checked out Neutral Milk Hotel. And Nick Harper - But I still like Harper Sr. much more.

9. Have come to adore the sounds of DeVotchka. If anyone knows any other band of the same/similar genre, puhleez. I am all ears.

10. Continue to feel unsatiated and very uninspired. I need another Illinoise again. Now that's not an invitation restricted to Sufjan alone.

So there! Another six months now?!

June 08, 2007

Aerosmith @ Bangalore

After Iron Maiden, I was thoroughly satiated and had no real enthu for any concert so soon. But it was my Dharma, I had to go. So there I was at the parking lot of the Aerosmith concert venue gulping down a couple of beers before we entered the gates. We reached the place around 5:30, the time when they said they'll open the gates. (for maiden, we were a good 5 hours early).

There were three levels of security checks, but we managed to sneak in a couple of Antiquity miniatures and a few smoke sticks. The concert arena was bigger than Maiden's and with good reason, Aerosmith was bound to attract a larger crowd and maybe they learnt a few lessons from the claustrophobic enclosure at the Maiden concert. Whatever the reasons were, we were standing quite close to the stage and still had a lot of private space. And then began the wait...

There was no opening act, just a stupid promo by RC where they made a few folx play the air guitar and the audience judged by hooting. Stupid though it was, the winner walked away with a guitar autographed by Aerosmith. An hour down the line (7:30ish), the crowd began to get restless. We had run out of booze and cigarettes, and our legs hurt from standing for so long, still there was no sign of the band coming on stage. There were no opening acts to warm up the audience so we settled for singing ourselves and generally making mirth. The PA system was playing some random songs and the screen was displaying signs like 'Hi Bangalore' and 'Welcome to Aerosmith Concert' in fonts that made it look like a cheap ad for some toothpaste.

The band finally got on stage by 8:15 to the tune of 'Taste of India' which was followed by 'Love in an elevator'. Then came 'Cryin' and 'Love is hard on the knees' and they crowd began to warm up to them, but then they sang a couple of songs from the 'Honking on bobo' album and everything fizzled out. Steve was up to his usual tactics of thrusting his pelvis, hopping about the stage and making faces at the stage cameras. There seemed to be a new band member on stage, a fat el stupido with a still camera clicking away to glory. WTF was he doing up there??? Joe was doing the guitar god act posing on the ramp while a fan blew his hair and scarf about.

Steven then tried to get the crowd sing along some real obscure song, I still don't know what song it was but the gimmick failed miserably. We were getting real tired of it all and were planning to leave and hit a pub where we got some real music...and booze. But we hung on for some more time as they were playing 'Living on the edge' but soon we lost all our patience and started falling back. When we cleared the crowd we realized that there was not a big crowd at all! the Rs.1800 enclosure was hardly half-full. People were lazing at the back and watching the show on a big screen. A bigger surprise was the Rs.1200 enclosure. It was so far off that the stage was not visible at all, partly due to the giant screen they had put up for them behind the sound engineer's rig. What a sham! I wouldn't want to pay 1200 bux just to watch the show on a giant screen. DNA's got to think of some better way.

By the time we reached our car, the band was saying 'Thank You, Good Night!' to the crowd. The main set had lasted only an hour or so! We were sure that the encore would be 'Janie's got a gun' and 'Crazy' but we didn't want to stick around. I just wanted to close my eyes, I wanted to fall asleep and miss the whole thing.

Bottomline: I've been to college band concerts that were more exciting.

March 26, 2007

Lie Detector

So did anybody attend the Shakira concert? Did you find out if her hips really don't lie?

March 20, 2007

Scream For Me Bangalore!

Okay, I'm ready to believe it now. Iron Maiden performed in Bangalore!!! A month and a half ago my cousin had called me up all excited, "Dude, Maiden's coming to India!" and then he went delirious. After having waited for them to perform in India for over 20 years, I dismissed it as yet another rumor but soon the news was all over the place. Could it be true this time?

Anyways, there we were at the Palace Grounds, a good 5 hours before the gates were scheduled to open. Armed with sandwiches, Red Bulls, water minus booze we parked ourselves by the gate discussing the best way to swoon when they finally came on stage. There were people camping there much before we arrived. A bunch of Sri Lankan fans had come directly from the airport and spent the night at the venue. Pretty soon what was a group of a few hundred maidenheads swelled up to a sea of black, screaming and cheering everything and everybody...including the tempo that brought in bottles of water.

The gates opened at 3 and the frenzy began. Pushing and jostling, we were among the first to enter the venue. So mad was the charge that they couldn't dare frisk us (the later ones got checked). We made our way right up to the front but then decided to fall back a few meters to park ourselves in front of the sound engineering rig. This later proved to be an intelligent move. The sun beat down ruthlessly, but we were safe in the shade of the rig and there was no chance of being pushed from behind during the concert.

We waited there for about 2 and a half hours chatting up before the first of the opening acts finally came on stage.

First up were the Delhi based winner of the Campus Rock Idols - FTN and boy did they suck!!! They probably created some sort of a record for being the fastest to get booed on stage, 30 seconds or so I reckon. Don't think it was entirely their fault though, the crowd was impatient after being in the sun all day and were in no mood to listen to their guttural growls, its a Maiden concert for crying out loud! They even tried to pacify the crowd by doing some nu-metal covers but there were no takers. They somehow completed their time and got off the stage as fast as they could. But no matter what we say, those guys got the distinction of sharing the same stage as there...

Up next was Parikrama and they were loudly greeted by the crowd. They had come on a mission, to prove that they can do originals and that’s exactly what they entire set of originals and each song was received by an appreciative crowd especially popular songs like Whiskey Blues, Rhythm & Blues, But It Rained and Open Skies. Imran, their impish violinist got the most cheers. When they were done, they crowd was really warmed up and ready for action.

But all the crowd enthu was soon to be shot down. Lauren Harris was next on stage with her band. For those who just went Lauren who??? She's the daughter of Steve "the god of bass" Harris. But when she started singing, everybody started seriously doubting this piece of fact. How can Steve's daughter be this bad!!! To put it mildly, she was PATHETIC. The band musicians were not half as bad though but this babe just can't sing. She got booed louder than FTN and I don't think there was a single person in the crowd that did not show her the finger, and she kept asking for more! "Come on Bangalore, let me see your hands." All the heat Parikrama had generated was totally watered down by her.

Once she was done, the maiden crew began their last-minute stage setup and the crowd went totally mute in anticipation. By this time there was not a single square inch of ground that was not filled up. It was getting pretty suffocating and standing in the sun for so long had begun to have its effect. Seconds before Maiden came on stage, a limp body of a fainted girl was suddenly passed on to me! We somehow managed to get her across the barricade, into the sound rig where the technicians gave her some water. This scene caused a panic attack in my wife and even she had to be hauled across which eventually worked well for both of us cause the crowd went berserk when Maiden burst in to the riffs of Different Worlds from their latest album. More songs from this album followed. Now, I'm really not into their later albums, which was just as well as it gave me time to absorb the shock, "MAIDEN WAS LIVE ON STAGE!". The crowd was going wild but they really crossed over when they started The Trooper. Bruce was all over the stage in his British army uniform waving the Union Jack. This was soon followed by 'Fear of the Dark', the song everybody had come to sing. The crowd was so loud that I'm not even sure if Bruce really sang it or just let the crowd do the singing. The stage backdrop changed with almost every song to show the different avatars of Eddie in line with the songs they were playing. They also played Wrathchild as a tribute to the departed vocalist of Moksha, which to me was a great gesture from a great band. Then they launched into Iron Maiden (the song) during which a huge robotic tank rose up on stage with Eddie emerging from it. The stage pyrotechnics were fantastic. It was hard to imagine these guys were around 50 years old! Bruce was a bundle of energy, he even climbed up a pillar supporting the speaker wall once to rousing cheers from the crowd. Dunno if they were expecting such an amazing response but whatever it was they must have been mighty pleased for Bruce promised that we wouldn't have to wait even 17 more months before they came back! He said they knew people have been waiting for 17 years for them to come to India (20ish in my own case) and that now that they have come, it is just the beginning and a lot of bands would follow suit, which I hope would be true.

Their main set lasted an hour or so with the crowd screaming for more and more they got. The encore began with 2 Minutes to Midnight and was followed by The Evil That Men Do during which Eddie, all 14 feet of him, walked on stage wearing a military uniform and carrying a gun! The final song was Hallowed Be Thy Name and the entire crowd lost its sense of reality. All I remember is jumping up and down and screaming myself hoarse.

The crowd lingered for some time hoping for a second encore but when the crew started wrapping up the stage gear, it was certain that the concert was over. We were in a daze, it still had not struck home completely. While back on the main street, my friend turned to me and wailed "Dude, we just saw Maiden live!!!", We had to sit on the pavement for a few minutes to let the feeling sink in. I was ready to retire...

March 07, 2007

Prog - Italian Style!

The Soulforged’s earlier post possibly was the much needed push towards my introduction and current fascination towards Italian Progressive Music. Premiata Forneria Marconi, Le Orme, Metamorfosi, Banco Del Mutuo Soccorso, Museo Rosenbach, Locanda Delle Fate, Quella Vecchia Locanda – the names might be quite a mouthful, but heck they have made some of the most brilliant music I have heard! Premiata Forneria Marconi (PFM), arguably the most popular of the lot, is touted as one of the most influential bands of the golden years of Progressive Rock (the 70’s but of course), alongside the likes of King Crimson, Gentle Giant, VDDG et al. If I have manage to tickle your curiosity enough, I would recommend that you start with one of PFM’s albums. While most of the bands sing in Italian, there are a few English language albums, which are essentially remakes of their successful Italian albums.

I must say I still haven’t dug deep into this genre, but out of the ones I have listened, I have listed down what I believe to be some of the phenomenal albums of this very important subsection in the history of Prog. If checking out ALL of them might be a stretch, at least sample a few. Yes, yes , I might be a tad biased towards the Italians (thanks to their food, their art, some of their films and of course Roberto Baggio), trust me when I say this – È eccellente!

1. Album : Storia Di Un Minuto
Band: Premiata Forneria Marconi
Year of Release: 1972

The beauty of this album much like most of the earlier albums of PFM, is its timelessness.The sheer brilliance of the instrumental set-ups, the melody structure and the harmonic arrangements DEFINES symphonic prog for me. It’s hard to escape the magic that is this album, whether it is the addictive riff for a backbone of E’Festa should probably go down or the chorus portion of the latter half of Impressioni Di Septembre.

Favorite Track(s) : Dove…Quando - Part 1 and Part 2.

2. Album : Collage
Band : Le Orme
Year of Release – 1971

This album would probably not figure in the list of the best Italian Prog albums, with their equally brilliant effort, Felona E Sorona usurping the place instead and I sometimes wonder why. Each track is a definite master-piece, IMO, with some very innovative song structures and authoritative instrumental passages. Le Orme might not be as melodic as PFM is, but I quite adore the theatrical style of their compositions which can totally overpower your senses.
And a special mention, Collage, the opening track ranks in my great opening tracks of great albums list!

Favorite Track(s): Collage, Era Inverno, Cemento Armato

3. Album: Darwin!
Band: Banco Del Mutuo Soccorso
Year of Release : 1972

I don’t know about you, but I find that Exclamation Mark at the end of the album name very thrilling!! A Concept album, based on the theory of evolution (presumably), this epic album starts with the landmark composition called L'Evoluzione. All of more than 16 minutes in length, this would definitely have to end up in the best opening tracks list. What distinguishes these guys is the distinctive and dramatic vocals of Francesco Di Giacomo and the multitude of variance that the tempos of their tracks offer. Also, their tracks can be as much classical as it is futuristic.
Favorite Track(s) : L’Evoluzione, Cento Mani, Cento Occhi

4. Album : Inferno
Band: Metamorfosi
Year of Release: 1972

Normally, these guys don’t feature in the first names that come up to any one’s mind when asked to talk about Italian Prog. But Inferno is a concept album par- excellence. Heavy on the emphasis of the synthesizers and keys for its sound, it reminds me much of a brain-storming session – It’s no-holds-barred, it’s engaging and it is very non-conforming.

Favorite Track(s): Caronte

5. Album: Forse le Lucciole Non Si Amano Più
Band : Locanda Delle Fate
Year of Release: 1978

A relatively late entrant to the 70’s Italian Prog force, Locanda Delle Fate might not be ranked alongside PFM and Le Orme kinds for shaping Italian symphonic prog. Because of that fact, they probably might not have the most original of sounds. But what is noticeable is their extensive use of instruments, often packed together and backed by some excellent percussion elements.
Favorite Track(s): Volte un Istante Di Quiete, Profumo Di Colla Bianca

6. Album: Per Un Amico
Band: Premiata Forneria Marconi
Year of Release: 1972

It’s only fitting that the biggest of ‘em all have two favorites – although it’s been pretty hard to narrow it down to just two! ‘Per Un Amico’, or its English version – Photos of Ghosts is a fantastic journey from start to finish. A fairly small album, it starts with the wonderfully surprising Appena Un Poco armed to the brim with some of the most characteristically PFM-ish sounds. Both Storia… and this album were released in the same year, and Per Un Amico just serves to accentuate the quality of the band’s music.

Favorite Track(s), Appena Un Poco, Il Banchetto

There are a few other albums that I also like, such as Moseo Rosenbach’s Zarathustra, Quella Vecchia Locanda's Il tempo Della Gioia, L'uovo Di Colombo’s self titled album, Le Orme’s Felona E Sorona and a few other PFM stuff – and who knows how many more as I start discovering more. But I think I have made my point already!

Until it’s time for the next post…well, what else but...Ciao!
P.S: I have no clue how to pronounce all these beautiful sounding words! :D

February 28, 2007

The Great Gig in Mumbai! A Review of the Roger Waters' Dark Side of the Moon Live Tour

Bracing ourselves for the biggest concert that we are going to attend was no easy job. We had to think of ways and means for sleathily sneaking in the camera, the smokes and heck, if it were totally upto me, a bottle of vodka too! Then there were the hours of sulking about not having enough dough for the tickets that will take us a whisker away from the stage…

So it’s only fair to say when the time finally came, I for one could not keep all the excitement brimming up within myself! That would explain the profanity or two that was generously imparted to that lady at the guard who frisked me first and dug my bag deep enough to find the camera, which was tucked away between several strands of newspapers! (Oh c’mon, when was the last time any of these security dudes/dudettes actually rummaged through the contents of your bag thoroughly??)……

Histrionics notwithstanding, we did NOT manage to get an enviable place close to the barricade. The barricade which served as a cruel reminder of the gap of distinction that existed between the 3K Haves and the 1K too-shorts! So after hurling a few wantedly-loud abuses at those large monsters who hogged every perceptible space between me the barricade, I wandered about in search of a strategically better position...For a while, we rested our asses sometime behind the sounds console and then finally found the best possible view near the fag end of the barricade....It was not fair, to say the very least, that not for having shelled out a mere 1 K (that 1 K wasn't that mere when the tickets were bought :P), we were being punished a wee bit too harshly! Even though the space for the 3 K-ers was half filled, there was no attempt being made to move up the barriers and so, what divided 'Us' from 'them' was some vast empty space, otherwise unimaginable in Bombay!!!!

Then, Sweeeeet Justice! It was but fitting that the golden opportunity to break out of the man-made walls that had kept us chained came when Mr. Waters took centerstage and the opening riff of 'In the Flesh' broke out! With some help, my ass was hoisted across the barricade and soon we found ourselves running across the open field to assume our rightful positions closer to the stage! What an exhilirating feeling that was! And the rest, as they say is history....

The gig itself was the single most involving, enchanting and heady piece of entertainment I have ever experienced. The show started on such a high note (even more so for us, what with the Great Escape!!) with the 'In the Flesh', before rolling into one of the oft-hhe eard Floyd tracks ever, 'Mother'.....Ours was probably the loudest voices amongst other section of the crowd, probably to the point of being annoying for some (Probably because they realized they weren't as much Floyd fans we were :P)....One of my favorite pieces, 'Set the Controls...." came next and then, even before the first fret movement took place, I knew what was to follow would be my favorite portion of the entire gig. Waters took complete command of the abridged rendition of "Shine On....." and the hair on the back on my neck was upright, when the giant Sun which had taken over the backdrop slowly tranformed itself to a picture of Syd Barrett! I don't know about the others, but at that point of time, I felt like there was nothing between me and that divine face and the song itself was like a medium of connection between me and Him. (Yes, he deserves a capital H!!)

'Have a Cigar' and 'Wish you were here' tranformed the audience into a hungry bunch of hounds, gulping down some very delectable dishes...I guess I was at screamy best especially during "By the way, which one is Pink" and '...For a lead role in a cage'! What ensued was a host of songs I have not heard much, but surprisingly they probably were the defining moments of the gig itself - Southhampton Dock, The Fletcher Memorial Home and Perfect Sense..

'Leaving Beirut', a single released by Waters in 2004, saw his anti-war campaign come out very vehemently . Waters talked about how the song was based on the hospitality shown by an Arab Family, on one of his adventurous expedition in Lebanon in 1961. The backdrop had a comic tale set-up with the story being recited with the help of caricatures, bubble-conversations and the works...The audience understandly was such a high note due to some liberal dose of Bush-bashing ( The track even has a line - 'Oh George! Oh George!That Texas education must have fucked you up when you were very small')...Close on the heels of this outpour came 'Animals', which had the most anticipated accompaniment - Lo and Behold! The Flying Pig! Graphittied all over with messages like 'Impeach Bush' and 'Sarva Jhati Ek Hai (In Hindi script)', the pig itself was symbolic of what an experience the gig was turning out to be - Huge, High and Fabulously entertaining!

The best part was apparently still to come - when we had a small break between the two Acts. We of course, refused to budge from our places - about three rows from the Stage. Waters had pleased our thirsty souls by coming to our side of the stage now and then...We were close enough to feel the heat when the explosions occurred on stage as part of the act and there ain't no way we were getting out of there! At this point of time, my neck was already sore, but who the heck cared! The end-to-end DSOM setlist was to follow!

When Waters started with 'Speak to me', I was brimming with all that bottled excitement! (Man, this is DSOM L.I.V.E!!!)...'Breathe' , 'On the Run' and then one of most popular sing-along Floyd tracks, 'Time'...The reprise of Breathe and The Great Gig in the Sky were obviously next, with some mind-blowingly beautiful wails by one of the back-up singers. 'Money' with that signature chimes and the opening riff gave way to one of my two most favorite DSOM tracks, 'Us and them' . The other favorite song, 'Brain Damage' came after 'Any color you like' before the end came with 'Eclipse'.

Then , there was much cliched encore dramatics....Waters and Co left the stage before coming abck again to do - 'Another Brick ', 'Vera' and 'Comfortably Numb'. By this time, we were exactly that - comfortably numb. Only surprise, this was not because of any of the common mind-numbing accessories! Yep, Numb with Delight and excitement of having been to the biggest concert yet and having seen and heard Waters - In the Flesh!

After all, the entire college phase would have been rendered meaningless if I were to take out the memories of all that Floyd playbacks - be it before while ghotting for tests, as part of Music Nites, or as general plays at the Sounds booth, during Oasis or heck! mostly during sleeping! I remember having the entire discography right from Piper to Pulse lined up back to back on my winamp and this used to play back to back throughout the day, the night, the waking hours!

Thanks, Mr. Waters for the biggest gig yet! And of course, to an umpteen million more memories!

February 23, 2007

Soaring to New Depths

Just when you thought that Indian commercial music industry has reached its nadir, they surprise you by plumbing even deeper.

A year or so, a song was doing raging rounds of the netfarers’ mailboxes. The song titled BC Sutta. The BC here stands for the ubiquitous gaali referring to incestuous relationship with one's sister :) It was composed by a band called ‘Zeest’, part of the underground music scene in Pakistan. It was, and still is a cult song. I'm sure most of you would have heard it at least once.

Cut to present. I was surfing through the channels last night and stumbled upon this promo for yet another Indipoop (no mistake here) album. This one was called 'Sutta Mix'. The song, Don't Smoke Sutta, was note for note a copy of the BC song with a shot of the dhik-chik steroid and accompanied by a ribald video featuring Meghna Naidu and other dancers dressed as Arabs for some reason (what's it got to do with sutta???).

The band was neither a party to this remix nor were they asked before this tripe was cooked. Knowing the highly evolved copyright laws of the land, the original songsters can only wring their hands in frustration and compose a few more MC/BC songs. Hopefully this time the subject of the songs would be these pathetic plagiarists.

Its a crying shame! Lifting popular international tunes or rehashing hits of yore was bad enough, but now this!. What will it be next? a remix of my school prayer?

Download the ORIGINAL Sutta song here

Check out what the band has to say about this.

Zeest Official Site

January 30, 2007

Say, whoever came up with the word "Hiatus" anyway??

Y'know, I have done this before...

Blogging after a hiatus which is long enough that they should probably coin an altogether new term to describe it...But then, this time I had stretched it a tad too long considering I had to rely on my I.E's memory to remember my login id here! While I wasn't that thrilled to have every bit of my existence on the Internet googlicized, it helps I guess...At least now, all I need to remember is my name separated by a self-inflicted dot!

So...what has kept me away? Well, lets not get there! (Unless you volunteer to count the bottles on my window sill...)...

What have I been upto, at least as far as mujik is concerned?

#1 - Gotten myself all there is to have of Sufjan Stevens' (again...we are strictly taking only mujik here...sadly so! )

- That includes rarities, outtakes, B-sides, a live album and of course the studio stuff! And the rest, as they say, is history! ( atleast on my page it is.... - Check out the Overall top artist! Yee Haw!)

- I even got Illinoise through CD WOW!!

#2 - Discovered a new muse - complete with the hippie looks, the weird name, an awesome voice and the works! Devendra Banhart's Cripple Crow, released in India thanks to FreeSpirit Entertainment, is one of my best CD buys in a while. I now have all of his other albums - It's folk with an eccentric twist, labelled "New Weird America" and all...And trust me, the only thing that works against the movement is the lame name!

#3 - Marillion!!! While 'Scripts for a Jester's Tear' would definitely figure in the most influential prog album list, I am ashamed to admit I haven't dug deep into more of their stuff. So I added Fugazi and Misplaced Childhood (with Bonus CD edition)....I must say, one of the most underrated of the better-known prog bands!

#4 Tag and Rename! (Thanks Mr. Orange Blossom Special :D) - I highly recommend this software for anyone who has a compulsive obsession with structured tagging of your music files.

#5 Rediscovered the joys of a live acoustic set and the brilliance of it in all its glory. Live albums are definitely not my forte, but if I ever need something to question as to why I haven't got myself more of the live albums - I could start with Derroll Adams' Live album. First of all, what an artist! And next, what an act! The most personal, the most involved, the most heartwarming and probably the most anyone can do with a banjo!

#6 A host of brilliant prog acts - The Italians! Mamma Mia! Premiata Forneria Marconi (PFM) needs no mention...But Le Orme, Metamorfosi and Banco Del Mutuo - they have been quite a find!

#7 Neo-prog attacked back in a major way! The Flower Kings' Retropolis (an album which I had been dying to hear for a long while), Chroma Key's Dead Air for Radio, The Pineapple Thief's new album - Little man..

#8 The grand ol' daddies of Prog - Kansas, Focus and of course, Renaissance!! Annie Haslam is my nomination for prog's leading lady :)

#9 Okay, I have to sheepishly admit that I had been taken by The Killers' When You were Young too. Before you jump at me... notice the "had" part of the previous sentence. The rest of their album failed to create any impression...

#10 That Mysterious charm of tapes! On my trip back home, I dusted up 'em cassettes (which were growing new beings on 'em!)...My first trip of nostalgia - Postcards from Heaven by the Lighthouse Family. Now these guys don't exactly belong to the tapes era, because going by the tape sleeve, this album was out in 1997 and I presume, CDs were out in some part of the world, even though they were yet to take over a quaint l'il town down south. But the experience of the fastforward/rewing options were really refreshing...

So there ..... I haven't exactly been having a totally wasted time! Or so I console myself saying...

Until the next post/hiatus....One last "Whoo-hoo" for Sufjan!

October 11, 2006

My Queensryche Moments

I can't explain this. Call it mind-numbing obsession, call it the habitual mid-week mid-afternoon boredom..Heck, call it Hopolapa Mupundopo, for all I care!

Some of my Favorite/Memorable/Enchanting/Obsessive Queensryche Moments (In no particular order) are:

1. The "Sweet Dreams, You Bastard" bit of ' I remember now' - Aaaahh, the double layer of sugarcoating on "sweet dreams" transpiring into the really spiteful "bastard" bit - Imagine the twist in the tale before it even began fully! Oh yeah, I do like the second "helllllo" and "perhaps you need another shot" bits too

2. Intro to 'Anarchy-X' : And the official musical journey to the one of greatest rock/metal/prog album begins..

3. The orchestral set-up of 'Suite Sister Mary', which begins after Dr.X's order to kill Mary with the drums gently teasing you before Tate begins " I feel the rain coming down.."

4. Jet city woman - the entire song! Seriously, do you know any girl who wouldn't want this track dedicated to her? (Unless it is sung by Weird Al)

5. "The Warning" scream at the beginning of this track!

6. "Go ahead without me.
I'll find my own way
Some people fly...and some of us worry
I'd risk it all to have wings."

Enough Said!

7. The piano accompaniment on "Someone Else(Not Me)"..Makes the song structure and delivery even more divine!

8. The chorus of "The Lady Wore Black" - Damn! What notes is he hitting?!

9. The riffs, that mini guitar solos, awesome drumming and of course the opening scream of "Queen of the Reich"

10. The vocals on "Tell you right now they've got nothing to lose They're building empire!!" and "Tear it all down, we'll put it up again. Another Empire"?! out of "Empire" - Who is doing that? Is that Tate?!

11. The Heavy Metal Umlaut over Y! (A little wannabe-ish maybe, but it sorta completes the picture!)

12. At the end of CD-1 of Operation: Live Crime, after Suite Sister Mary ends - Tate says to the crowd amongst wild cheers " Thank you very much!" Pause. More Cheers. "For those of who are not familiar with Queensryche and our music and probably wondering what the heck is going on" Pause. More Cheers. "This is called Operation Mindcrime".
(I find it endearing and yes, honest! Also - when in doubt, remembered am one Ryche obsessed soul!!)

Special Mention: Take Hold of the Flame
Reasons (In chronological order of appearance during the course of the song)
#1 The way Tate ends with "Cooold" of the opening line - "Too late to save a dream that's growing coold"

#2 The oh-oh bit after "distant signs of unforetold" - the end of second line of the opening verse

#3 THE SCREAM!!!! (after the opening verse)

#4 The chorus with the backings and everything

#5 The note changes on "on the edge" and "stay...make it stay" of the verse following the chorus

(Okay, you got me there! But if you have heard this track, you might, just might, be able to understand why this ryche obsession is so strong. This was the first track of this that I heard. What an impact, huh?!)

Okay, I do have a list of moments about their tracks that make me cringe too. But lets just count them as neglible!

September 26, 2006

Go on...VERB me!

I find this very amusing...,,1816709,00.html

Robert Wyatt's response?

"I'm very honoured at the idea of becoming a verb."

Guess it's all normal in 'Cuckoo'Land!!