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Mike RSS Feed (San Jose, CA)
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Heaven & Earth
Heaven & Earth
Price: $10.00
57 used & new from $7.47

3 of 5 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Worth one listen, if only to satisfy your curiousity, November 28, 2014
This review is from: Heaven & Earth (Audio CD)
I compare this album to the current lineup of Journey. I don't care for Arnel Pineda at all, but I thought that Steve Augueri...even though he was a shameless Steve Perry clone...sounded fine in the band. In Yes, I enjoyed Benoit David's work on "Fly From Here," even though no one is going to label it their finest album. To take it a step further, I thought his work in his own band, Mystery, far surpassed anything he did in Yes in terms of performance AND material.

I'm probably running the risk of many "not helpful" votes by saying I'd like to see Jon Anderson back in the band, but come on...this is one of the FEW bands that build its foundation on someone with a very distinctive performing and songwriting style. He was never the ENTIRE band. But he was such an integral part of it that his absence is felt here.

There is nothing WRONG with this album at all. It's just that there is nothing here that you haven't hear before, and in a more powerful fashion. Don't believe me? Get a copy of Transatlantic's "Kaleidoscope" album and listen to their take on "And You And I." Kaleidoscope, for those not familiar with the band, is a "sipergroup" of sorts made up of members from the "second wave" of prog...former Dream Theater drummer Mike Portnoy, former Spock's Beard keyboardist Neal Morse, Marillion bassist Pete Trewavas, and Roine Stolt from the Flower Kings. Simply put, the students now sound better than the master. We live in sad times when a cover of a legendary band's classic can blow the current band right out of the water.

This is tastefully performed "so what" music. It plays well in the background but I challenge you to remember any song from it after first listen.

You have Steve Howe, Chris Squire and Alan White from the "classic" lineup of the band (although II have always preferred Bill Bruford over White). You have Geoff Downes on keyboards, whose primary function in Asia for decades was to steer the bus straight down the middle of the road in search of radio-friendly hits, rather than acting like unhinged wizard Rick Wakeman. And at center stage, you have Jon Davison, in way over his head. Remember the so-called supergroup "GTR?" Steve Howe, Steve Hackett, and vocalist Max Bacon, one of the least distinctive frontmen in the history of rock and roll. The current lineup of Yes isn't quite as bad as that, but they are committing the cardinal sin for a band that made its bones on stoner bombast...they have become safe and B-O-R-I-N-G.

Then again, Asia's still around, so a "Yes Lite" version of Yes could prosper for years to come. I just won't be standing in the crowd with my Bic in the air.


Elixir 16182 Nanoweb Phosphor Bronze HD Acoustic Guitar Strings, Light
Elixir 16182 Nanoweb Phosphor Bronze HD Acoustic Guitar Strings, Light
Price: $14.95
15 used & new from $13.60

4.0 out of 5 stars " but after a few minutes of playing them I realized I LIKE the "squeak" on acoustics, August 9, 2014
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
I installed these strings and, as the advertising states, they minimize "squeak," but after a few minutes of playing them I realized I LIKE the "squeak" on acoustics. It's part of the charm, it's something I've come to expect, and it's never bothered me. The strings felt different to me...they are obviously steel, but the wrapped strings almost felt like nylon. I haven't had them on the guitar long enough to tell you if i'd purchase a second set, but my overall verdict is that they play well, but probably wouldn't convince me to give up my normal brand of strings. Good strings, just not life-changing strings. I'd recommend them if you didn't already have a favorite brand.


Colgate Optic White Toothpaste, Enamel, 5 Ounce (Pack of 6)
Colgate Optic White Toothpaste, Enamel, 5 Ounce (Pack of 6)
Price: $25.63
3 used & new from $20.01

2.0 out of 5 stars Not pleased with the way it cleans, July 8, 2014
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
Not for me, unfortunately. Over the years I have smoked (but not since 2002) and drink a cup of black coffee or two. I've never gone for a full-blown whitening at the dentist, so I don't know what kind of results I'd get, but like a lot of adults with my background my teeth are sort of a very light, consistent beige...no stains, but no blazing neon white, either. I used this toothpaste for a week and the only difference I noticed...other than a lack of "whitening"...is that my teeth just didn't feel clean. On day 7, after brushing my teeth with the Colgate, I went back to my regular "Crest Complete With Scope" for a second brushing and there it was...that "smooth as glass" feeling. This may be a toothpaste that does the job for other people. It didn't for me.


Road Trips Vol. 2 No. 3: 6/16/74 (State Fairgrounds, Des Moines, IA) & 6/18/74 (Freedom Hall, Louisville, KY)
Road Trips Vol. 2 No. 3: 6/16/74 (State Fairgrounds, Des Moines, IA) & 6/18/74 (Freedom Hall, Louisville, KY)
Price: $14.49

5.0 out of 5 stars GREAT performances, but almost 90 minutes shorter than the original CD release, June 20, 2014
FULL DISCLOSURE UP FRONT: I own the original CD release of this MP3 re-issue. I give the shows 5 stars, but:

GLASS HALF FULL: It's one of the best entries in the Road Trips series, especially since it chronicles the brief and legendary "Wall of Sound" era. Since its release, the band has also issued Dave's Picks Volume 9, a 1974 "Wall of Sound" gig from Montana (billed as the "third official" W.o.S. show).

GLASS HALF EMPTY: The ORIGINAL CD release, including bonus disc, featured 24 songs (3 hours and 57 minutes of music). The current MP3 release is missing 9 songs (1 hour and 19 minutes of music).

The MISSING songs are:

Morning Dew (Freedom Hall, Louisville, KY 6/18/74)
Around and Around (Freedom Hall, Louisville, KY 6/18/74)
Deal (State Fairgrounds, Des Moines, IA 6/16/74)
Greatest Story Ever Told (State Fairgrounds, Des Moines, IA 6/16/74)
Truckin' (State Fairgrounds, Des Moines, IA 6/16/74)
Nobody's Jam (State Fairgrounds, Des Moines, IA 6/16/74)
Wharf Rat (State Fairgrounds, Des Moines, IA 6/16/74)
Goin' Down the Road Feelin' Bad (State Fairgrounds, Des Moines, IA 6/16/74)
Sugar Magnolia (Freedom Hall, Louisville, KY 6/18/74)

SO...the original CD is impossible to find unless you track down a used copy, but the MP3 is missing almost an hour and a half of performances.

It is vintage "Keith & Donna"-era Dead...those familiar with the story know that by the couple ultimately became "frayed from the vicissitudes of the rock and roll lifestyle" (thank you, Wikipedia), and mutually agreed with the band to depart in early 1979. But in 1974? Red hot and bent on exploring new musical landscapes.

I would say get this one without hesitation, but the lingering question is "How are you going to feel about the missing content?"


Victorinox Swiss Army Spartan II Folding Camping Knives, Red, 91mm
Victorinox Swiss Army Spartan II Folding Camping Knives, Red, 91mm
Price: $14.99
4 used & new from $10.00

13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Just the right amount of stuff, and "pocket friendly", June 2, 2014
I OWNED this knife. Then, after decades of not flying on an airline, I parked my car in economy parking at McCarren Airport, took the shuttle to the terminal, went through security, and realized I hadn't given a thought to the Victorinox Swiss Army Spartan II Folding Camping Knife I carried in my pants 365 days a year.

I was asked "Do you want me to dispose of this for you, sir?" Now, for the uninitiated, that means this guy took it home for himself, or it went into the big bucket of confiscated items airport security posts and sells on eBay. I have family members who have worked at the airport. Trust me, this is exactly what happens, NOTHING is "disposed of."

Anyway...it is SLIM enough to go in your pocket but has what I find to be the only portable tool set I need. For another 5 bucks you can get the "Camper II" model and the ONLY difference is that it includes a saw. In the entire time I had my Spartan, I never felt the urge to saw anything. And in response to what other have posted about the Philips screwdriver issue, YES, that SMALL screwdriver...the one at the right edge of the knife in the photo...has worked as a Phillips EVERY time I've needed one.

I am a few days away from a client check showing up in my mailbox and when it does I am ordering this knife. Five stars all the way.


Year of the Horse
Year of the Horse
Offered by MEGA Media
Price: $12.65
114 used & new from $1.58

4.0 out of 5 stars Kind of like when Bob Weir taught himself to play slide guitar...onstage., May 30, 2014
This review is from: Year of the Horse (Audio CD)
You remember that, right? Weir decided he'd like to play slide guitar, but instead of learning how to to that and then stepping onstage with the Dead, he LEARNED onstage. It made for some uneasy listening, but the Deadheads went along with it because, after all, it was the Dead.

Same for Neil. Crazy Horse has never been about precision and unrelenting focus. Sometimes the "ragged glory" of the moment springs out of the passion and sloppiness of the performance. Sometimes.

Case in point, Neil's reach exceeds his grasp on "Barstool Blues." First, this isn't 1975, so the vocals drop a key or two. The original was jam-packed with trademark Neil "isn't he going to hurt himself doing that" high notes. Here, he lays back and plays it safe. But it's the SOLO, the part you WAIT for, where Neil sort of stumbles around looking for a groove he never quite finds.

Same can be said for much of the rest of the album, too. When "Broken Arrow" was released (the studio album that preceded this one), the band had that lind of heavy, lumbering sound going on. Of course, this was before "Psychedelic Pill" and the song "Walk Like A Giant," where he pushed the sludge thing right past "excess" and just kept going.

Another issue here is that Neil revisits some of his weaker material like "Sedan Delivery." We got that one on "Rust Never Sleeps" and "Live Rust"...how badly did we need a third version?

There's a "high lonesome" version of "Mr. Soul"...Neil on acoustic guitar and harmonica...that provides a nice little breather from the meandering jams.

It's not his WORST live album, but it certainly isn't his BEST. It provides its own kind of fun. Better not spook the horse...


Win, Lose or Draw
Win, Lose or Draw
Price: $8.39
37 used & new from $4.87

5.0 out of 5 stars It sure felt like the end of the line, April 26, 2014
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Win, Lose or Draw (Audio CD)
This was the final album from what was left of the original Allman Brothers Band, minus Duane and Berry. They pretty much fell apart after this, although they came back a few years later with some additional players. It was never the same. They never came within a country mile of their original mojo until Warren Haynes joined them for the "Seven Turns" album, and they were dangerous again.

You can tell it's over on this album but you also have a few "career best" performances here...the title track, the smoking cover of Muddy Waters' "Can't Lose What You Never Have," "Nevertheless." Dickey Betts plays a much more pronounced role here, including his latest entry in the "Elizabeth Reed / Jessica" school of Allman extended instrumentals, "High Falls."

They really were on their last legs here...albeit temporarily...but they pulled off one more winner before reinventing themselves.If you are a fan of the original albums, you can't be without this one.


Light Brown Henna Hair Dye 100 Grams
Light Brown Henna Hair Dye 100 Grams
Offered by Henna Hut
Price: $9.50
2 used & new from $9.50

5.0 out of 5 stars It works., April 26, 2014
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
If you're sitting on the fence about this product, I advise you to go to the Henna Hut Website and watch their video. It is a very accurate representation of what you will be dealing with. If you are purchasing this to dye your beard, the product will last a L-O-N-G time, even with repeated applications. I used one rounded teaspoon of the dry powder, which you are told to mix with warm water until it is the consistency of yogurt. Purchase a clean, soft bristle toothbrush Wet your beard, apply a little shampoo, and use the brush to GENTLY exfoliate your beard. Use the back of the spoon to apply the dye (watch the video). Wait an hour, rinse. I used the light brown product, and it WILL appear a little green at first (not "leprechaun green," just a little green tint) and that green WILL go away in 48 hours as the more natural light brown works in. If you are wary of traditional hair dyes...I have sensitive skin and have no desire to form red welts all over my face...THIS is the product for you. There was NO irritation, NO negative reaction, just a great product that worked as advertised.


Stop Draggin' My Heart Around
Stop Draggin' My Heart Around
Price: $1.29

5.0 out of 5 stars Here's why I love this one..., April 26, 2014
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
...Stevie came to Fleetwood Mac while in a relationship with Lindsey Buckingham, and many of her songs were about the ups and downs of that relationship, but "Stop" is of a simpler, more primal relationship...less melodrama, less soap opera, more "you could never look me in the eyes" basic stuff. She was at the absolute TOP of her game here, and Tom is a perfect foil for the "point / counterpoint" tradeoff. The song is a gem, plain and simple...two undeniable talents coming together with great material in a great performance.


Banana Boat for Men Triple Defense Spray SPF 30, 6 Ounce
Banana Boat for Men Triple Defense Spray SPF 30, 6 Ounce
Offered by Why Pay More and Fast Shipping
Price: $3.59
5 used & new from $3.59

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Feels great, does what it's supposed to do, April 26, 2014
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
I've never been a fan of cream-based sunscreen products. They go on heavy, feel heavy while they're on, and are a pain in general. You use your hands to apply them and then you have it all over your hands and everything you touch gets covered in sunscreen.

I don't "live in the sun" 24/7, but I DO have fair skin, and I DO live in the Nevada desert. When I first moved here, I used to get the "lobster thing," especially on places like my shoulders, since I like to wear tanks tops in the warm weather. When this product became available, I decided to give it a try. It is an extremely light spray, it goes on light and while your skin will appear wet for a moment after application, it absorbs very quickly. It has a nice clean scent, and after it's on, you won't know it's on at all. I spent several hours in the sun on a hot day and the next day didn't have a trace of red on me. I'm not sure of how to write about the product's anti-odor properties because I shower daily and use an antiperspirant / deodorant and body odor...even in thee sun...has not been an issue for me. Try this product...I'm sure you will be as pleased as I was. You'll also like the fact the the cap locks...no accidental sprays if you reach into your beach bag or purse.


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