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M. AUSTIN RSS Feed (Richardson, TX USA)
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Europa Report
Europa Report
DVD
Price: $2.99

3 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars At Long Last Realism, August 10, 2013
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If you liked 2001, A Space Odyssey, and Apollo 13, then this movie will complete your trilogy of realistic spaces movies to love. I am weary of the "green screen spectacular" and this low budget, but very human adventure fits in a vast void left by the major studios. The editing is a little jerky for my tastes but I'm sure to many it will be viewed as "edgy". Nevertheless, this is one I will buy and watch from time to time. Real people in a contemporary spacecraft just dealing with dangers which come along with deep space flight without warp drive. I enjoyed it very much.


Dark Matter
Dark Matter
19 used & new from $8.99

53 of 57 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Something Borrowed Something Blue, July 25, 2004
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This review is from: Dark Matter (Audio CD)
Fans of old Genesis (I mean OLD Genesis) rejoice. Long followed in the UK, and via imports in the US, IQ makes their first American release in over a decade with the aptly named "Dark Matter". With a set of keyboards purchased from a Tony Banks yard sale, IQ presents a rebirth, or for their fans, a continuation of the "keyboards mixed forward" feel that made household names of guys like Rick Wakeman. Lush sounds straight off your old records leap out at you, including string and flute melotrons, 70's era sound effects, Leslie organ speakers, and did I hear an ARP? The keyboards are complimented by cleanly played drums, and bass, with lyrical, multi-tracked, harmonized, high-sustain guitars soaring overhead. The rapid meter changes and transitions in feel demanded by this project are handled with aplomb. Very nicely done. A couple of songs kind of beat you over the head with repetitive odd meter, but that's a small thing. By and large, the project is very well written, played and produced with excellent musicianship on display throughout. The vocalist reminds me of a young Peter Gabriel, only less smoky and more on key. This guy has a nice set of pipes. Very enjoyable to listen to.

This is a themed project, all about the end of the world, and/or death and loss in general, and/or war and its associated tragedy. So try not to play it first thing in the morning, or just after the end of a relationship. The Lyrics take the form of broken poetry in the grand tradition of progressive rock. The brooding, ethereal, circular words only transition abruptly into straight prose at one juncture, when, during the 24 minute title song, "Harvest of Souls", they take a big sarcastic poke at the United States in plain English. After several listens, you realize that pretty much the whole 25 or so minutes is devoted to a big poke at the United States. It seems an odd move from a purely business perspective. But IQ is obviously entitled to their opinion, and I certainly support their right to dissent and to sing about it. It's what makes our two countries great. So, I'll not toss this CD in the landfill with the Dixie Chicks.

Overall, I give Harvest of Souls a solid B+. It is well played, but lacks originality. You will hear the war music from Yes's classic, The Gates of Delirium, and passages sounding just like Genesis' "Blood on the Rooftops", and tiny, much less obvious "borrowed" licks, sounds, and passages abound. IQ does not seem concerned with moving the art form forward. They could be called, "The Prog Rock Preservation Society." But if you are a fan of progressive rock, particularly, the sound pioneered by Genesis, you will get a big kick out of this one. Welcome back to America, IQ. All the best to you.


Dark Matter
Dark Matter
19 used & new from $8.99

9 of 12 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Must Buy for Prog Fans, July 8, 2004
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Dark Matter (Audio CD)
And then there were five. Fans of old Genesis (I mean OLD Genesis) rejoice. Now IQ releases a CD in the US. Long followed in the UK, and via imports in the US, IQ makes their American debut with the aptly named "Dark Matter". With a set of keyboards purchased from a Tony Banks yard sale, IQ presents a rebirth, or for their fans, a continuation of the "keyboards mixed forward" feel that made household names of guys like Tony Banks and Rick Wakeman. Lush sounds straight off your old records leap out at you, including string and flute melotrons, 70's era sound effects, Leslie organ speakers, and did I hear an ARP? The keyboards are complimented nicely by very cleanly played drums, bass, and guitar. The bass and drums really place a solid footing on things. The rapid meter changes and transitions in feel demanded by this project are handled with aplomb. Very nicely done. A couple of songs kind of beat you over the head with repetitive odd meter, but that's a small thing. By and large, the project is very well written, played and produced with excellent musicianship on display throughout. The vocalist reminds me of a young Peter Gabriel, only less smoky and more on key. This guy has a nice set of pipes. Very enjoyable to listen to.
This is a themed project, all about the end of the world, and/or death in general, and/or war and its associated tragedy. So try not to play it first thing in the morning, or after the death of a pet, or just after the end of a relationship. The Lyrics take the form of well written, yet obscure poetry in the grand tradition of progressive rock. The brooding, ethereal, circular words only transition abruptly into straight prose at one juncture, when, during the 24 minute title song, "Harvest of Souls", they take a big sarcastic poke at the United States in plain English. It seems an odd move from a purely business perspective. But IQ is obviously entitled to their opinion, and I certainly support their right to decent and to sing about it. It's what makes our two countries great. So, I'll not toss this CD in the landfill with the Dixie Chicks. I give Harvest of Souls a solid B+. Great work. If you are a fan of progressive rock, particularly, the sound pioneered by Genesis, you will get a big kick out of this one. Welcome to America, IQ. All the best to you.


No Title Available

4.0 out of 5 stars Consistent Quality, January 18, 2004
= Durability:5.0 out of 5 stars  = Fun:4.0 out of 5 stars  = Educational:1.0 out of 5 stars 
After a very dissapointing experience with a couple of cheap, no brand scooters, I ponied up and bought two of these Bladez Lights for my kids for Christmas. My kids have been on them ever since, and are having a blast. These little guys are welded together very durably and present excellent fit and finish throughout. The deck is a nice, beefy piece of wood, and the handlebar folding mechanism is very strong and cleverly designed. True, this model is not overly fast or powerful, but exactly how fast do you want your kids to go? Although the scooters are only a few weeks old at this point, they have an untold number of charging/discharging cycles under their belts already and operate perfectly. Having two of them provides me with a unique perspective. The kids go out and ride them together, then plug them in at the same time when they get in. Hours later, I've been in the garage working and seen both of their charge indicators go green (indicating full charge) just seconds apart, meaning that the quality of the batteries and chargers is very consistent. I could not be happier.
Note: You must unplug the charger from this model when it is full, or it will damage the battery. You get used to it, but it is a bit of a hassle. Bettery damage due to overcharging may account for some reports of instances of poor battery life with this model.


Reincarnation: The Missing Link In Christianity
Reincarnation: The Missing Link In Christianity
by Elizabeth Clare Prophet
Edition: Paperback
Price: $16.24
118 used & new from $2.90

21 of 26 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A good historical perspective, but no smoking gun., September 30, 2000
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This is a well written, well documented page turner that I enjoyed very much. The author approaches the subject of the time of Jesus from a completely different slant, and makes a good case that beliefs in reincarnation permeated the population in Jesus' day including some Jewish sects. She certainly convinced me that Jesus was likely to have been surrounded by, and exposed to people who believed in reincarnation. She rightly points out that Jesus never spoke out against it. She spends a lot of time recounting how certain religious sects who taught reincarnation in the 300's were treated by the orthodox church and the Roman Government - tremendous oppression - countless people killed. She circles and circles and circles, but never lands. I personally think Jesus believed in reincarnation because he was a highly enlightened man and reincarnation is the truth. But she never caught him teaching it to anybody, which was disappointing. However, this book is certainly worth reading for nothing else than it's unique historical perspective.
Comment Comments (2) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Jan 3, 2014 6:45 PM PST


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