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Braden E. Bost RSS Feed (Seattle, WA)
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Somewhere in the Between
Somewhere in the Between
Price: $11.49
45 used & new from $5.54

8 of 21 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars I ultimately have to be honest . . ., July 16, 2010
I accept that no one will find this review "helpful," which we all know means "I think your review is wrong." I don't care. I have to be honest, and I wish I could feel different about this album.

If we were talking about musicianship, songwriting, performance . . . I'd give this album six stars if I could. All of those things got moved up a notch from their last original album, "Everything Goes Numb." That's what I want to hear from good bands--not re-writing their style, but still getting better at what they do. It's also so comforting for an old 3rd Wave Ska fan like myself to see that one of the few remaining groups is so incredibly talented.

But then we come to the reason that I just cannot like this album--the lyrics. I would not and cannot fault someone for putting their feelings and heart into their lyrics, and I think that's exactly what Kalnoky has done . . . but unfortunately he's alienated me this time. The majority of this album is a rant on religious (usually Christian) faith and dogma from the most depressing atheistic and humanistic point of view I've ever heard.

It angers me because Kalnoky thinks he understands Christian teaching but clearly only knows what a-religious types and other atheists say is Christian teaching.

It depresses me because his stance is essentially "our existence is hopeless and pointless so we might as well just accept it and die."

It frustrates me because I come back to this album every six months or so, hoping that THIS TIME the lyrics will just become another instrument in the mix and I won't notice their meaning (because I know I can do it--I was once a Bad Religion fan), thus allowing me to enjoy the album for how good I can tell it is . . . but that never happens and I always walk away feeling slimy and sad.

And yes--that does ruin the album for me. Like I said, even though I couldn't be in greater disagreement with his message, I can't fault or belittle Tomas for writing what he feels in his songs. And what's even more odd is that I'm not the kind of person that ultimately cares about what his favorite songs are about, but this time around I can't get past it (and oh have I tried).

Consider this review to be a warning if you're looking into buying this album. Of course I think anyone and everyone is better off without listening to the garbage Kalnoky spews out of his mouth, but that's not my choice to make for anyone. Just know what it is before you go there.
Comment Comments (3) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Feb 25, 2013 8:34 PM PST


Super Size Me [DVD]
Super Size Me [DVD]
DVD ~ John Banzhaf
Offered by kylakins
Price: $10.34
166 used & new from $0.01

35 of 48 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars How did you not catch that?, March 2, 2010
This review is from: Super Size Me [DVD] (DVD)
So let me get this straight. IN ADDITION to eating only McDonald's 3 times a day for 30 days (and super-sizing every time he's asked), this guy:
1) Severely reduces his physical activity from a healthy, regular regimen to almost nothing;
2) Switches overnight from an almost entirely vegan diet to one heavy in animal protein; and
3) Force-feeds himself portions that are way more than he would eat under normal circumstances, including having multiple desserts in a single setting, having very large, regular sodas when diet sodas are available to him within his own rules, and frequently picking the highest-calorie sandwiches over more sensible ones, all of this resulting in 5000+ calorie days . . .
. . . and after it all, we think that McDonald's is the lone culprit to his weight gain, depression, and liver problems? How is it possible that so many intelligent people have watched this movie and managed to miss the fact that this guy stacked the deck in his own favor? Especially since there have been dozens of similar studies since the release of this movie that have all failed to reproduce these results (don't believe me? look it up); in case you don't know anything about how research is done, ONE experiment with ONE participant with MULTIPLE variables altered that produces results which CANNOT BE REPLICATED indicate error at best, fraud at worst.

I can get behind a movement to keep the likes of Pepsico and M&M/Mars out of schools, and my ears are open for a rational discussion on the morals of marketing to children, but I refuse to let some clever film maker pull some slight-of-hand so I'll support his political/social agenda. This movie is a LIE.
Comment Comments (9) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Sep 24, 2011 1:23 PM PDT


Skarmageddon, Vol. 3
Skarmageddon, Vol. 3
Offered by bookscoutfinds
Price: $16.10
21 used & new from $0.32

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Eltit, December 4, 2009
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Skarmageddon, Vol. 3 (Audio CD)
If you like Ska, this is worth it . . . especially considering how cheap it is from some of these sellers. I bought this when it was still relatively knew and it was $17. Later it got stolen and I was ecstatic years after the fact to find it for these prices on Amazon. Personally, I think that Pro Midget Mafia's "Pizza Girl" is an unsung 3rd-wave classic. So many other great songs, too!


Finale PrintMusic 2010 [Old Version]
Finale PrintMusic 2010 [Old Version]
2 used & new from $75.00

23 of 23 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Title title, December 4, 2009
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
I've had this for roughly a month and I love it. Let me go through my uses and skill level so you understand what I've needed so you can determine if this is the right one for you. (I spent a lot of time debating since there's such a huge price difference between this and the full version, or even Allegro).

First - understand that you can always update your version to Allegro or full via the Finale website for the difference in price. That helped me be even more comfortable with my purchase.

I am a musical hobbyist and (very) part-time instructor. I use Finale to write out my musical ideas so I can mess around with other instruments and parts which I may not have available or even know how to play. Often, being able to SEE what I've written allows me to arrange better--some people need to hear and play, and I am not like this. At least not yet. I also love taken written songs and creating new arrangements for them. I'm a big geek so I love arranging video game songs on piano or guitar. It's so easy to find midi files online and I just open the file in Print Music and viola! I have the whole song written out. Saves me hours upon hours of listening and re-listening and frustration until I'm tired of the song. If I had to find a gripe, the only one would be that the tabbing tool is poorly put together, and that sucks since my primary instrument is guitar. But honestly it doesn't ruin anything, it's just annoying (I'd ding it .01 stars for that if I could).
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Jan 18, 2010 9:20 PM PST


Pneuma
Pneuma
Price: $12.00
3 used & new from $12.00

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars title review here, December 4, 2009
This review is from: Pneuma (Audio CD)
For the first time in years I can't stop listening to an album.

I saw these guys open a 4-band show a few months back and honestly the rest of the concert was down-hill. If I had to sum up their work in one word, it would be "EPIC." The soft, high-end guitars with constantly building drums and ambient strings and horn arrangements all playing while the vocals move from the foreground to the background creates a feeling of flying through the clouds on sound. Every song has its own unique feel but they all work together to form a singular journey. It rocks, and yet it soothes. I love what I have and now I want them to release more.


Fretboard Logic SE - Special Edition The Reasoning Behind the Guitar's Unique Tuning + Chords Scales and Arpeggios Complete (Volumes I and II Combined) (Fretboard Logic Guitar Method Ser)
Fretboard Logic SE - Special Edition The Reasoning Behind the Guitar's Unique Tuning + Chords Scales and Arpeggios Complete (Volumes I and II Combined) (Fretboard Logic Guitar Method Ser)
by Bill Edwards
Edition: Paperback
Price: $17.23
83 used & new from $6.00

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars This should be a large part of how you learn the guitar., December 1, 2009
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
If you're interested in this book, you've probably taken note of some of the negative reviews. Let me say that most of those reviews want this book to be something that it isn't trying to be, and true appreciation of it comes from fully understanding what it IS. (I've seen elsewhere where some people gave low ratings to a guitar tab book because it wasn't a comic book . . . unreal.)

To play guitar well you need to develop skill in three areas.

1) Technique (finger strength/memory, pick/fingering style, hammer-ons and pull-offs, changing between chords, etc.)
2) Understanding the instrument (where notes are on the guitar and in relation to each other)
3) Music Theory (understanding what the notes mean and how they work together)

I have yet to find a single book that tackles all three of these well (and if I did, it would have to be HUGE). Lots and lots of books do the first and third ones together, though I recommend getting separate sources for each so you can get as in-depth as possible. My personal favorites so far are "Guitar Aerobics" for technique and "Music Theory for Guitarists" by Tom Kolb plus "Contemporary Music Theory vol. 1-2" by Mark Harrison for theory.

Lots of books skip that second area, though. The reasons are many. For one, music notation was designed around the piano, so when teaching you theory, they teach you piano. Another reason is many non-keyboarded instruments (namely brass and woodwinds) have relatively simple interfaces, so there's not much reason to spend much time on the concept. And many instructors learned piano FIRST and then learned guitar and visualize notes as a keyboard and not a fretboard and expect their students to do the same (even the aforementioned "Music Theory for Guitarists" starts right out by telling you to get to work on memorizing which frets are which notes--an essential journey but daunting without a good method).

FRETBOARD LOGIC is a book about being able to see the fretboard for what it is: a series of patterns; a matrix of notes. This book is entirely about understanding where things are on the guitar and how to easily find them. To navigate the fretboard. The fretboard is built on a pattern, and Edwards teaches you that pattern in an easy way here.

That pattern is the CAGED sequence. It's nothing new, really, but Edwards' approach is genius in its simplicity. "First: here are the five basic chord shapes; nearly all chords you ever use will be based off of these shapes somehow." "Second: here are the five pentatonic scale shapes; note that they directly relate to those five chord shapes." "Third: here are five diatonic scale shapes; notice how they extend the pentatonic scales--all diatonic scales are built within and between these shapes." "Fourth: here are some alterations to the original chords and scales--don't worry about what each chord is for right now, just learn how they're shaped."

An absolute beginner will have some difficulty with barre chords right off the bat, but learning the CAGED sequence in this way opens up the mystery of the guitar's fretboard almost immediately.

By no means should this be your only guitar book, but by the same token, by no means should you not have this in your library.


Everything Goes Numb
Everything Goes Numb
Price: $11.49
36 used & new from $5.99

5 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I was WRONG!!, June 24, 2005
This review is from: Everything Goes Numb (Audio CD)
I just read my own review of Catch 22's Keasbey Nights and noticed that I ended it with the statement "we will never again see it's equal" or something thereabouts. Well, when I wrote that I wasn't expecting this band at ALL! WOW!! I wish I could put that in a bigger font! This is by far the best ska CD I have heard in . . . ever! And that's saying something.

In case you didn't pick it up from any other reviews, the line up of this band (on this album) is comprised of 3 members of some Jersey ska band that I've never heard of and 3 members of the once awesome Catch 22, including that band's former primary song writer and front man Tom Kalnoky and their former bassist Chris Paszik. I think the third guy was the trombone/trumpet player, but for some reason I'm thinking he has now left the band. I could be wrong on that. REGARDLESS!! This album is Keasbey Nights continued. What Catch 22 would have been if they didn't have that huge split. No . . . no I think because of the different members in this band that Streetlight Manifesto is better than Catch 22 was. This album is a testament that ska music never dies, and shows the innovation, creativity, and originality needed to keep such a genre going. If there will be a 4th wave, this album will be it's "Energy" (OpIvy).

In addition to the great raspy fronting vocals, the still-muddled but more prominent guitar, and the phenomenal bass guitar work, this album adds in one of the best drummers I've ever heard in my life, and solid horn work that blows away every other horn section from any band I can think of, to Catch 22's old feel. While Catch 22's horns were really good, they were strong in the brass but seriously lacked in good saxophone power. Streetlight thrives on their two amazing saxophone players, and I've never been one for saxophones, either! The rich, deep throb of the bari sax on the opening track gets this awesome album underway with Kalnoky's fast-paced vocal stylings, glowing horn solos, and a shake-your-fist-in-the-air chorus. It's hard to get past that first song because it's so awesome, but keep going, it gets better. Unfortunately, Kalnoky has a knack for writing weak openings to his songs. Many songs don't grab you right away, but you've got to let them keep going, because by the 30 second mark, you'll be hooked. "Point/Counterpoint" will sound very familiar to Keasbey Nights fans, as it has an anthematic chorus much like the title track from that album.

I recommend this album to anyone who loved old Catch 22, or even to anyone who just likes really good ska. I'm looking forward to more from these guys.


Crimson
Crimson
Price: $14.98
83 used & new from $0.30

6 of 15 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars I've lost another favorite band, June 16, 2005
This review is from: Crimson (Audio CD)
This album is one of the worst travesties to ever spin over a lazer. I'm sorry if this pisses you off, but "Crimson" sucks,and it sucks hard (and chances are, if you really like this CD, then the first Trio song you heard was probably "Stupid Kid"). I thought "Good Mourning" was a better-than-decent album and I had high hopes that the addition of new drummer Derek Grant was going to be the marker in history that, years down the road, I could say saved one of my favorite bands from certain doom by helping them recover from that dung-heap "From Here to Infirmary." But, no. Skiba seems hell-bent on being dark for dark's sake rather than writing honest lyrics and heart-felt music. And what's even more disappointing is Dan! My dear, dear Dan! His songs, especially on their first few releases, have been the Trio's brightest masterpieces. If at any time Matt's songs seemed redundant, you always had Adriano saving the day by crooning on of his well-thought-out compositions. But now, Dan's talent seems to have declined to its current state of nothingness since the firing of Glenn Porter. Every song on this album is awful. If at any time any one of them starts to sound okay, it still doesn't sound like the Alkaline Trio. I'm all for bands growing musically, but this is rediculous. If you were a big Dashboard Confessional fan, and he put out an ablum that was more on par with, oh, say, Styx rather than his previous works, chances are you'd be as upset as I am right now. It's like they took their writing tips from Linkin Park. What's worse is the little over-sights, like the fact that when the guitars come in after the piano intro on "Time to Waste", they're not in time with what the piano had been doing. I'm sorry, but I'm tired of the bands that, at one time, moved and defined my very soul at the turn of the century and are now going to crap in hopes of play on MTV2. First Blink 182, then Weezer and Jimmy Eat World, and now the Trio. I can't speak for anyone else, but I'm done wasting my energy on this group. I'm going to have a hard time putting on my Alk3 shirts now, just the same way that I can't bring myself to wear my Blink or Weezer shirts anymore. Hopefully there are better bands to come in the future.


Of Someday Shambles
Of Someday Shambles
16 used & new from $1.85

4.0 out of 5 stars title, May 4, 2005
This review is from: Of Someday Shambles (Audio CD)
I really like this CD a lot. The best stand-out feature of Jebediah is how they have such a versatillity in song-wrinting styles. There's punk song ("Slot Car Racing"), songs that could be argued to be emo ("Did You Really?"), your basic rock songs ("Feet Touch The Ground"), even a song with heavy country influence ("Happier Sad"), and an orcestrated epic masterpiece ("Run Of The Company"). The whole album is very well put together and is one of those gems that can be and should be listened to from beginning to end every time.


Gray Race
Gray Race
Offered by MediaWarehouseUSA
Price: $14.99
55 used & new from $0.31

3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars No titles, please, April 19, 2005
This review is from: Gray Race (Audio CD)
You ever get an album that you're not expecting much from, but once you get it you find that you can't stop listening to it? When I first got this album way back in 1997, that's what happened to me. The primary thing that has drawn me to Bad Religion is the vocal talent (though not necessarily the lyrical content), and the vocal melodies and ringing harmonies are at their best on this album. The stand-out of stand-outs on this album is "Cease," in my opinion, with "Victory", and the title track coming in close behind.


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