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Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Kendrick Lamar and diss raps

I listened to Kendrick Lamar's "diss" rap to, let's face it, all the other shitty rappers out there today, the day after it was released. And it was weak. Incredibly weak. No secret that I think Lamar is unbelievably overrated. But that wasn't a diss rap. If it was, then rap is at it's lowest point ever right now. Tupac's Hit 'Em Up was a diss rap. Ice Cube's No Vaseline was a diss rap. Cypress Hill's No Rest for the Wicked was a diss rap. Every single thing Eazy E released was a diss rap. Kendrick Lamar rapped some bullshit with every other word being "nigga" and the industry is falling all over itself. Fucking pathetic. I'm supposed to believe that Drake is a hardcore dude? Uh, yeah. okay. What next, Chief Keef is the next savior of hip hop?

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Cornerstone Craft Beer and Wine

I purchased a 32 ounce growler of Sierra Nevada Narwal Imperial Stout. It's surprisingly good, considering it's made by Sierra Nevada. The staff went out of their way to make me feel appreciated and gave me a walking tour of the place. Which was fun because it's 30 feet by 20 feet in size.
They have 4 and six packs in refrigerators, as well as a large selection of "build your own six pack" beers out on the floor.
The dudes at Cornerstone also said they would look into finding Affligem Dubbel for me and possibly stocking it. It's my all-time favorite beer.
They also sell my brand of cigarettes, so basically they are my favorite shop.

So ends the mini-review of my first experience at Cornerstone Craft Beer and Wine.

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Dick's Den

Why Not? So says the neon sign in front of Dick's Den. I will try to answer that question.

Dick's architecture and atmosphere is almost perfect - a big dive bar with cool stuff everywhere to look at and a large enough and diverse enough crowd to make people watching fun. A lot of good choices for bottled beer. A pool table. When I was much younger, I would go to Dick's to buy 12 pack cans of Black Label if I missed the 1 am cutoff. They sold 12 packs of Black Label for $6 bucks. Anywhere else it would have been 12 dollars.

Anyway,

Bleugrass night is full of great music; even if you don't like bluegrass, or think you don't like bluegrass, you should check it out. It's free, and like the neon sign says...

One issue with Bluegrass night is it's meteoric rise in popularity. It's long been a popular destination on Tuesdays, but lately it seems to be a monster. People have to stand and wait outside in a line because the doorguy can't let anyone in until people inside leave. That's how crowded it's become. I almost expect a velvet rope to appear in the coming weeks.

Another issue is that a lot of the people aren't there for the music. They're there to be seen and to socialize. Whether that's good or bad is debateable. For me, I think it's both. Good, because more people are exposed to the music. Maybe they'll catch something they like, download some bluegrass, and see a local show just to see the band. Bad, because it means people who do want to go for the music aren't able to either get inside or can't hear the pickin' and strummin' because of all the scene kids chattering away about financial aid, graduate school, and who has the coolest non-prescription glasses.

There is another issue though, the staff kept a friend of mine, who was so drunk she could barely stand, from leaving with her friends. In fact, they locked her inside and closed the blinds, so that her friends outside who were banging on the window, trying to get their friend out, couldn't see in.
That right there means Dick's Den will never get my business again.

Friday, October 26, 2012

Paul Collins Beat, The Girls, Pretty Pretty

Paul Collins Beat is the name of Paul Collins and his backing band - in the case of his show last night at Ace of Cups, three Australian dudes.

I had never heard of Paul Collins, nor did I know his influence on modern music. This dude has been around the block a few times, and you can tell he's a pro and takes his music seriously (while having a good time playing it). His stage demeanor is humble and modest born out of seeing it all before.

I can't name any specific songs, as I said, prior to last night, I knew nothing about the man or his music. But I'm certainly going to investigate his extensive catalogue after witnessing his performance.

His musical style at this show was mostly pop-punk/power pop - catchy chorus', fast guitars, rhythm guitarist and bassist providing back-up vocals on the chorus'. Songs about girls and good times.

Middle band was The Girls, which has 5 members and only two of which are women. They were excellent as well. I saw them play at Carabar a few weeks ago, where I wasn't impressed, but they brought a lot more energy to this show.

My date and I couldn't help but laugh at the make-up of the band. Like I said, the music was excellent, but band seems to be made up of an irregular cast of misfits; from left to right...

  • The bassist seemed to take playing the bass VERY seriously. Even when his strap fell off and a roadie/fan was trying to help put it back on, he didn't miss a note. 
  • Jessica Wabbit (or Rabbit, she played in another band that I reviewed here) is the pixie-sized singer/guitarist who has an incredible voice. Her between song banter consisted of one-line zingers and taking her shirt off, and telling The Angriest Tambourine Player to take her shirt off as well.
  • The Drummer was an ogre and really kicked ass on the drums. 
  • The Angriest Tambourine Player was just that - an angry tambourine player. She also sang some back-up and danced; all while scowling. Which was kind of impressive considering how energetic she was.
  • Lastly, the second guitarist was Metal Dude who looked like he was in the wrong band. He was super into the music, though, and looked like he was having a blast. 
The opener was Pretty Pretty, a rockin' 3-piece punk band that I definitely want to check out again. You can listen to some of their songs on Bandcamp for free. I wish I could say more about them, but not today.

For more on Paul Collins and The Girls, hit the following links;
Paul Collins' official website - thepaulcollinsbeat.com and his myspace page

The Girls on Bandcamp