1120

19 Jan

There are so many things that I want to post about. I think this will be the first of several posts for today. There are things in my life that I want to talk about. There are things in the world of music that are worth a mention. So much stuff and so many songs to relate them all to, as 10kdays is the soundtrack of my life.

And what’s going on in my life. I have a cat. This is a pretty big step for me. How is having a cat a big step for someone who has had cats before and has already done big life things like have kids? The thing is I haven’t had a cat in a few years. When my marriage fell apart, I had to make a decision about the pets. We had two cats and I had could’ve laid my claim on one of them. But I felt terrible about the idea of splitting up a pair. So, I let my ex keep both cats. And prior to all that, I had lost my cat Caleb to a brain tumor. So, I was ready to give up on the idea of having pets. And went a few years without one. But life changes and I got a wonderful girlfriend, Jill, and eventually I would meet her family. That would lead me to meeting the family pets. And I slowly began to realize that you can’t really stop being an animal person. Either you like having pets or you don’t. I’m a person who likes pets. I would go to Jill’s parents and take the dogs out to go play ball for an hour. I couldn’t deny that I missed having a pet around. And so did Jill…alot.

So, this Christmas, i did some wheeling and dealing and got our landlord to allow us to get a cat. I surprised Jill with the news on Xmas day. And now a few weeks later, we have a new addition to our household- Edie! Edie is an black and white American shorthair but with a twist. She had ear mites and as a result, her ears collapsed. So, she looks like a Scottish fold in a way. Despite some neglect in her past, she’s a sweetheart of a cat. We’ve had her for mere hours and she’s already begun warming up to us and I think she’ll make a nice addition to the fam.

In honor of Edie’s arrival. I figure a good Edie related song will do nicely. My first thought was the great Cult ballad “Edie (ciao baby)”. But I want something more fun, since this is a moment of celebration. Instead I’m choosing a song from the band Edie Sedgwick. I first heard of them (actually it’s really just one guy, Justin Moyer,  under the persona of a band named after the famous model) a few years back in one of my random record company hunts for free mp3’s. It’s a little punk, a little disco, with a lot of pop culture. It’s like Semi Precious Weapons without the swagger but still just as fun.

Song 1120: “Sigourney Weaver” by Edie Segdwick

1119

17 Jan

Have you ever had a single lyric that you just couldn’t get enough of?

That’s what I’ve been feeling over the last few days. The other day, I started digging around my music collection looking for music that I felt would make good wrestling themes. There are two reasons for this search. One is because I have been playing the game WWE ’12 and the game is endless customizable. I decided to forego all the characters in the game and play with a whole set of my own creation with rings, logos and all sorts of other bits of user created content. And since you can put in your own musical choices, I started searching.

The other part is that a good wrestling theme has something to it that many songs need in general: a sound that catches you immediately. There can’t be a slow build. A wrestling theme is a song that you only get to hear briefly before a match so it should be instantly recognizable, energetic and catchy. Here’s a great example:

 “Cult of Personality” by Living Colour (previously on 10kdays at #748)

Living Colour’s “Cult of Personality” is the theme song of WWE champion CM Punk. It opens with a powerful Vernon Reid guitar riff that goes right into Will Calhoun’s drums followed by Muzz Skillings’ bass. When Corey Glover makes his first appearance, it’s with a howling “Look in my eyes”. Within seconds, you are onboard and ready to go. So, I thought it was fun to go through my music collection looking for songs with that great energetic start.

I found a lot of very good examples in various genres like “I Get Money” by 50 Cent, “Aenema” by Tool (my friend Mike figured that one out), “Dead Girls are Easy” by the 69 Eyes… I could go on and on with this list. As I was searching, I stumbled across the song “100%” by Big Pun. It’s a song that has a great opening. The song samples Lalo Schifrin’s song “Anita”, so you get this latin jazz flute riff while Tony Sunshine sings “Oooo… Puerto Rico” before Pun breaks in just to say “Toma!” (take that!) before the song hits the chorus. Great start to a song. Then I found it. Probably my favorite rap lyric ever. So simple but it’s such a great tough guy line:

The night is young and I’m already fighting, hiding my gun/ Promoter bugging,  screaming “Who the fuck invited Pun!”

Everytime I hear that line, I smile. It’s a great visual in the lyric and ending the verse on that line with a punchy delivery was great. So, all together the song ends up taking you in with a smart start, a great sample as the foundation, a chorus early, strong verses. Such a good song. If I was a Puerto Rican wrestler/ boxer/ Mixed Martial artist, I would have to come out to this. How can you not get the engines revved up by this?

Song 1119: “100%” by Big Pun

1118

14 Jan

Welcome to the revised 10kdays.

Revised?

The initial concept of this blog was about me (Niveous) writing about a song a day for 10,000 days (without repeating a song). It’s a great concept. The guy at song-a-day.blogspot.com does it pretty well. As do Glenn Case & Frankie Big Face (the guy who got me writing this blog and the guy who got me to revive it, respectively). One aspect that doesn’t work as well for me is the “song a day” part.

But Niv, isn’t that the whole concept?

Well, there are days in which I want to write about more than one song. Then there are days that I miss like I’m often going to miss Fridays because I’m traveling. I sometimes feel guilty on those days and I should never feel guilty on a project like this. It’s talking about music which is one of my favorite things. Then there are nights like last night where it’s coming close to midnight and I think to myself: “There is no bloody way I can finish a post by midnight. I’m going to miss a day via time limit. That’s ridiculous.” Another aspect that I wanna change are the themes. That was a self-imposed part of 10kdays to help me figure out things to write but often it just leads to me doing research and not just writing from the heart. The blog seems to work better that way. So, from now on, 10kdays has no rules. I will write about music for 10,000 days (gotta keep that, it is the title) relating it to my life and all sorts of other things. I may write more than one blog a day. I may pick more than one song. It’s a necessary evolution.

Welcome to the new version of 10kdays.

Song 1118: “Feeling Good” by Muse

1117

10 Jan

Continuing my “By the numbers” theme, my initial thought for 2 was the 2 Live Crew. C’mon, why not? I was a teen during their rise to prominence. All that stuff playing up to a young male. But no one wants to hear me ramble on about Luke Skywalker and the many half naked women he paraded around. Though I probably could have a blast talking about “Do the Bart”. But instead, I decided to stay classy and got with the Irish band Two Door Cinema Club. Now, I don’t know a lot about the band other than the fact that they are named because one of the band members could get the name “Tudor Cinema” correct. And I don’t have much of a personal attachment to them. I first saw them on an episode of MTV2’s Subterranean which is the hardest show in the world to catch. Is it even still on? Does it live on like Headbangers Ball & 120 Minutes languishing on the MTV website? Nope, it looks like the ship has sailed for that show. Well, it wasn’t anywhere as good as 120 but that may be a time and place thing. But enough about MTV shows. It’s late and I’m going to run with the song that I first heard from Two Door Cinema Club one fateful night on MTV2.

Song 1117- “I Can Talk” by Two Door Cinema Club

1116

9 Jan

New theme. Let’s see how long I can run this theme? I call it “By the Numbers”. Each day, I am going to write about a band or song for each number in order until I can’t figure out something to write about or I just get bored.

1. That seems like an easy place to start. There are so many ways to go with this. There’s the U2 classic. There’s the Three Dog Night song and its cover by Filter. What about a band like Onerepublic? One Step Closer? One Step Beyond? Metallica’s One!!! Those are all good choices, kinda. But I’m going with At The Drive-In. “One Armed Scissor” was the first song that I had heard from the band. I first heard it on WSOU, Seton Hall’s Pirate Radio during one of their year end shows. The station is known for “the hardest rock” which usually meant metal bands but the energy captured in an At the Drive-In recording is undeniable. Who cares if the lyrics are jibberish. The musical composition is wild and unpredictable. The song is all about the feeling it brings to you.

Song 1116: “One Armed Scissor” by At the Drive-In

1115

8 Jan

I’ve been watching VH1 Classics’ documentary series Metal Evolution and this week they showed the episode on Grunge and the big question of the episode was “Is Grunge metal?”. I looked at the subgenre list on wikipedia and surprise, surprise, grunge was not there. And then I was looking around on wikipedia and looked at my favorite metal band (my favorite band, period)- Made Out of Babies. I looked at the genres that they are listed under and didn’t find any metal subgenres. They are called Noise Rock, Post-Hardcore and several other genre titles but not metal. I was shocked. Take a song like…

Song 1115: “Silverback” by Made Out of Babies

… and it sounds like metal to me. And I’m pretty sure that it would sound like metal to a lot of people.I think I’ve come to a conclusion from all this: genres are crazy and bands are too difficult to try to compartmentalize. I think I’m going to give up on the metal marathon just because subgenres can be ridiculous and bands have roots in so many places. So, I don’t have the answer to what is heavy metal and what is not. But I know what I like and I’m going to keep listening and keep posting.

1114

5 Jan

The next stop on the metal marathon is thrash. How do you describe Thrash? Have you heard Metallica… before Enter Sandman. Welcome to Thrash. It’s power and speed. It’s one of heavy metal’s core subgenres. Metallica, Megadeth, Anthrax, Slayer, Sepultura, Kreator, Testament… the list goes on and on. The band I want to talk about today is one of the lesser known thrash bands- Acrassicauda. I just got a chance to see the documentary “Heavy Metal in Baghdad” and it blew my mind. It’s the story of Acrassicauda, one of (if not the only) heavy metal bands in Baghdad and all their struggles the band has to go through just to make the music they want to make. Every second that I watched, I felt so incredibly fortunate for the things that I have. This past year I was able to throw two concerts with only some minor difficulties. Acrassicauda struggle to get one concert off the ground… without dying or getting arrested. I recommend the documentary (you can find it on YouTube) to any musician. It’s a tale of people who love their music and will do anything to be able to play it. Here is a song from Acrassicauda (I guess that’s a spoiler but it’s still worth seeing):

Song 1114: “Garden of Stones” by Acrassicauda