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Clockwork Angels Tour
Clockwork Angels Tour
DVD ~ Rush
Price: $17.75
54 used & new from $11.86

10 of 13 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars A review of the video quality, December 2, 2013
This review is from: Clockwork Angels Tour (DVD)
Most complaints are about the audio (and justifiably so) but the video is just as bad if not worse.

First, the concert was shot at 60 fields per second instead of 24 frames per second -- as a result it looks like live tv instead of film. Why is this bad? Because it looks like something your local tv studio filmed -- everything is overly crisp, overly saturated, overly smooth if that makes sense. The image is very flat, and has no warmth. I believe they used 24 frames per second on Time Machine, Snakes and Arrows, and R30 dvds and they should've stuck with that.

Second, the hyperactive editing is annoying. The vast majority of shots last no longer than 3 seconds. That type of editing might work for trailers and a single music video, but not for a 3 hour concert. They should have gone with half as many cuts.

Third, all the audience shots. I guess the producers had cameras mingling among the audience. I get it -- the director wants you to feel like you're there. Audience shots are cool every once in a while, but they really got carried away on this one. Furthermore, I'm sure the audience are all nice people, but when Neil Peart does a big drum fill, I want to see him do it, not some dude (or dudette) air drumming in the audience.

This DVD has one thing going it: it captures the light show very well. Rush always puts on a spectacular light show and this one captures it better than the other rush live DVDs. However, this does come at some cost: the color balance is badly off on many shots -- I think as they were trying to get the lights correct, many times the other colors (including skin tone) is completely washed out.

And of course, the audio stinks. The other reviews cover that well.

That said: Snakes and Arrows (still my my fav) and Time Machine are still the best Rush DVD's. Rio and R30 are second tier. This one is at the bottom.
Comment Comments (2) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Jan 7, 2014 6:03 PM PST


Clockwork Angels
Clockwork Angels
Price: $10.00
98 used & new from $5.46

19 of 23 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Strong and Focused Effort, June 12, 2012
This review is from: Clockwork Angels (Audio CD)
Make no mistake, this new Rush album is for Rush fans. Like the band itself, there is very little middle ground, listeners will either love or hate this record.

Clockwork Angels is a modern day concept album. Like concept albums from The Who or Pink Floyd, each song is a chapter in the Clockwork Angels story, but each track stands on its own.

Musically, the guys are playing as tight as ever. And there is a lot of playing on this album. Lyrically, Clockwork Angels is some of Neil's best writing ever, filled with steampunk imagery and emotion.

This is highly subjective, but it is safe to say this record is as good as any Rush album since Moving Pictures. Yep.

Track-by-Track Review

Caravan - Released two years ago, this track has been re-mixed by co-producer Nick Rasculinecz. The re-mix is subtly different, with more bass guitar are some more sound effects.

BU2B (Brought Up To Believe) - Already released, but with a new intro with guitar that sounds like late-era Pink Floyd. In a recent interview, Alex admitted the new intro was a last-minute add-on recorded in his hotel room during mixing. The rest of the song is as good as ever.

Clockwork Angels - Finally, brand new material. A musically dynamic song shifting between driving rock, soft melodics and even some blues. It is reminiscent of The Way The Wind Blows from Snakes and Arrows. While it doesn't have an obvious hook, this song really grows on you after a few listens. Best song ending on the record too...

The Anarchist - The first 1.5 minutes are a jam, with some great guitar riffs and Neil pounding away on the low toms. In fact, song initially seems like an instrumental, but finally the lyrics come in. "The lenses inside of me that paint the world black." Alex does a very cool middle-eastern guitar solo.

Carnies - This song begins with a killer riff that's a like demented version of "Working Man." Some great lyrical hooks: "The smell of flint and steel" and "sometimes the angels punish us by answering our prayers." I can hear some arpeggios that sound quite like the patented "Hemispheres" chord.

Halo Effect - This is one for the wives and girlfriends of Rush fans. After 5 heavy songs, track 6 is a short melodic breather. And its a rare Rush relationship song with poignant lyrics everyone will be able to relate too. "What did I see? / Fool that I was."

Seven Cities of Gold - My favorite song after the first listen. This song is funky, heavy, and grooving. "A man can lose his past in a country like this." It's like Rush's "Territories" mixed with Zeppelin's "Black Dog."

The Wreckers - This tune has the best chorus lines on the album: "All I know is sometimes you have to be wary of a miracle too good to be true." It is accompanied by a nice string arrangement. My vote for the next single.

Headlong Flight - Already released to radio, this is a quintessential Rush song. Geddy's opening bass riffs and Neil's drum break are real highlights. "I wish that I could live it all again." Indeed.

BU2B2 - This is a really brief string and guitar piece. The lyrics fit into the Clockwork story, but this is more like a connector piece than an actual song.

Wish Them Well - If BU2B is an angst-filled faith basher, Wish Them Well is the more stoic approach of a more mature man: "Thank your stars you're not that way / turn your back and walk away." The liner notes indicate this song was tedious to write, despite its relatively straight-ahead sound. I'm glad they didn't scrap this one.

The Garden - Simply one of the best Rush songs ever. It opens with strings and a melodic bass part and then some acoustic guitar. This is the song that every Rush fan will want played at their funeral. "The measure of a life is a measure of love and respect." Alex's solo is right up there with "Limelight" and "Kid Gloves."

In conclusion, the listener gets the feeling these songs were made to be played live. I wouldn't be disappointed to Clockwork Angels in its entirety on forthcoming tour.
Comment Comments (3) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Jun 12, 2012 5:09 PM PDT


Sennheiser HD25-1 II Closed-Back Headphones
Sennheiser HD25-1 II Closed-Back Headphones
Price: $199.88
57 used & new from $150.95

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Not pretty like B&W P5, but sounds WAY better, December 21, 2011
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
These headphones simply sound great, much better than the Bower and Wilkins P5s I owned for a while. I think of Bass like liquor: a little bit is great, but too much can easily make you sick. The HD25-1 II have just the right amount of bass. Not too much, but a subtle extra oomph compared to other good/affordable headphones such as the sony v6. The mids and highs are nice and clear and not muddled like in the aforementioned P5s. The on ear design provides great isolation, is quite comfortable, and it doesn't mess up your hair like around ear headphones. The headband splits so one part goes over the top of your head, and the other goes over the top of the back of your head. Secure and comfortable. Highly recommended.


The 4-Hour Body: An Uncommon Guide to Rapid Fat-Loss, Incredible Sex, and Becoming Superhuman
The 4-Hour Body: An Uncommon Guide to Rapid Fat-Loss, Incredible Sex, and Becoming Superhuman
by Timothy Ferriss
Edition: Hardcover
Price: $15.26
307 used & new from $5.46

2 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars It Works, December 18, 2010
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
I lost 15 pounds in about a month using the slow-carb diet outlined in this book and the paleo diet. It wasn't just any 15 pounds, but the "last" 15 pounds that can seem impossible to lose. I've also lost probably 2 inches off my waist with only moderate exercise. Furthermore, my digestion has significantly improved. There is a lot of science in this book, but even following the most basic suggestions can yield dramatic results in a very short time. The only trick is that you have to be disciplined enough to do it. I bought this book because i knew 15 bucks would be the best investment I could make in my health and physical performance. Thanks Tim!


BU2B
BU2B

9 of 11 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great Song, but the Loudness Wars continue..., June 1, 2010
This review is from: BU2B (MP3 Music)
I'm a really big fan of both caravan and bu2b, but i think i like bu2b slightly better. The heavy guitar parts remind of "Armor and Sword" and "Secret Touch" from Rush's last two albums. The lyrics definitely continue the agnostic theme (bu2b = brought up to believe). The line "the watchmaker loves us all to death" carries a dark double meaning. The lyrics cycle around like the pantoum style in "the Larger Bowl." With both tracks Rush is still very much a current band, the music is heavy, unpredictable, and full of odd time signatures. One can tell producer Nick Rasculinez has really pushed the band to take some chances and play on the edge.

My one big issues with the songs is the quality of the mixing/mastering. Both songs are very loud and layered (not quite the clipping nightmare that was Vapor Trails), but there is virtually no dynamic range in the music. The guitar sound really buries the drums, vocals, and bass -- which is a shame because i can hear some really good drum and bass parts hidden in there. The songs don't sound bad necessarily, but they definitely don't have that punch and crispness that music everywhere seems to have lost in the mp3 age.

All you really need to know is, as Gene Simmons said, "its Rush!"
Comment Comments (3) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Jul 22, 2010 3:32 AM PDT


Samsung P3 Palm Theatre Plus 16 GB  MP3 Player (Black)
Samsung P3 Palm Theatre Plus 16 GB MP3 Player (Black)

5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Sound Quality vs. the Ipod Nano 5th Gen, February 28, 2010
While at first glance the P3 may seem like an ipod touch competitor, this player is actually more similar to the ipod nano. The iPod Touch is multi-function pocket computer -- it does internet/email, sophisticated gaming, etc. However the P3 and Nano are meant to be music vessels -- music oriented devices with limited capacity for extras such as games and video.

I did a little test with a silver 16gb P3, a 16gb 5th gen nano, some Dire Straits songs, and a decent (but not outstanding) pair of Audio-Technica over ear headphones. While the P3 doesn't blow the Nano out of the water as far as sound quality (listening to the same songs at same bit rate back-to-back on each player), there is noticeable difference in sound quality. The P3's sound is rich with space and depth, where the nano sounds slightly duller by comparison.

The nano's sound is quite decent, and I'm not an apple-hater (i love my macbook), but the P3 just sounds better.

I originally disliked the idea of touchscreen interface because the thought of fingerprints all over my screen seemed repulsive. But after actual hands on use I prefer the P3's touchscreen interface to the nano's click wheel. The P3's controls are intuitive and can be done with only one hand. The click wheel on the nano has become located so near the bottom of the player that it can be a bit of a pain to use. That being said, the P3 and its touchscreen is just more fun than the clickwheel. I can live with the fingerprints after all.

My only disappointment with the P3 is the casing material. From the pictures the player looks to have a full metal casing. However, the only actual metal is on the back of the player, the front is actually similarly colored plastic. While, the player still feels solid, this was a surprising discovery. I anticipated the P3 would be about twice as thick as the nano, and that's true. The P3 would be perfect if it were a little thinner.

All in all, if you care about sound quality in a music-oriented player, the P3 is superior to the very good iPod Nano.

Also, the P3 supports drag-and-drop functionality so it works with macs. Before you connect it to the you mac you have to go into the settings on the player and switch the mode from MTP to UMS -- and presto its mac/linux friendly!


SanDisk Sansa Clip+ 8 GB MP3 Player (Black)
SanDisk Sansa Clip+ 8 GB MP3 Player (Black)
Price: $56.88
104 used & new from $45.99

1,900 of 1,929 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The Clip+ does everything it needs to, and nothing it doesn't., September 18, 2009
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
I owned the first generation clip, and the new 8gb clip+ retains everything that was great about the first while adding all around refinements.

Pros:
- Overall build quality has improved, but especially with the clip mechanism.
- Files on MicroSD integrate seemlessly with the on board memory.
- The volume and power buttons have more ergonomic placement on the device.
- Sound quality remains great.
- Audiobook files can be sped up slightly to save some "reading" time.
- The interface is a little smoother and nicer to move through.
- The square trackpad makes it easier to navigate without looking at the player. (good for runners)

Cons:
- No cap on the MicroSD slot, so that could potentially get dirty.

If you don't need gimmicks such as touch screens and web browsers, then this player is quite possibly the best on the market for value, size, and quality. The Clip+ is definitely worth the few extra bucks over what the first gen clip is selling for now.

UPDATE: Having used the product for a while the one thing I'm disappointed with is battery life. The meter drains down to 50% at the expected pace, and then goes from 50% to 0 quite fast. I haven't timed it but i'm sure the battery life (using all default settings) is quite less than the advertised 14-15 hours.
Comment Comments (120) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Mar 25, 2014 2:51 PM PDT


Gurkee'S Mens Neptune Sandal - Beige - Sz 10
Gurkee'S Mens Neptune Sandal - Beige - Sz 10
Offered by Novacompanies
Price: $29.95

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great Sandal, June 28, 2009
These sandals definitely get noticed. My first day wearing them I got two compliments from girls.

They are comfy and quite light. I've walked over concrete, through water, and in the woods, and these sandals wear well. They are a little slippery on carpet or wood floors.

My only complaint is that I wear a 10 shoe and the 10 gurkee was wearable but too snug. I'd recommend ordering a size up from your shoe size.


Snakes & Arrows Live 2 CD Set
Snakes & Arrows Live 2 CD Set
Price: $14.88
54 used & new from $5.32

10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Their Best Live Album?, April 15, 2008
As noted in other reviews, the recent proliferation of live albums from Rush made me hesitate to pick up this most recent incarnation, but I bought it anyway and it is a little gem.

Unlike past concert recordings, these discs strike the perfect balance between vocals, guitars, and drums. Alex's chords rip through, Geddy's bass is deep and solid, and Neil's drums (and cymbals!) are pristine. And unlike Rush in Rio or R30, Geddy's matured voice is prominent in the mix. The "audiophiles" will always find something to complain about, but to normal humans this mix is what a live album should sound like.

Highlights: Digital Man (the new arrangement is fantastic), Witch Hunt (haunting and powerful), Subdivisions (heavy, but in a good way), De Slagwerker (Neil has been practicing), and the entire encore (the double bass and snare in One Little Victory were captured perfectly)

Not to forget the material from Snakes and Arrows. Everything comes across well live, and certain songs may even rival the studio recordings for energy and excitement.

Snakes and Arrows Live is a solid four-star effort.
Comment Comments (2) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Apr 15, 2008 9:09 PM PDT


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