Wednesday, 27 July 2011

The Clash- London Calling

Hello and welcome to the new Wednesday Plug in Your Head. Which is exactly the same as the Monday Plug in Your Head, but it's now on Wednesday! But this feels like it's a new start for Plug in Your Head and for me today. First of all, I got my first trolls! Which is always exciting. And today is a new day for me because today I applied for my ID Book, which involved long lines, impatient assistants and of course getting my finger prints taken. So long story short, I'm now in the system... So from now on, Plug in Your Head will be exactly the same, but different somehow... And on Wednesday.

And now onto the topic of one of the greatest albums of all time, London Calling by The Clash. Now this is not only my opinion, because according to Wikipedia (The Source of all knowledge) It has been given either 5 Stars out of 5, 10 Stars out of 10 or A+ by almost every major music publication EVER and was rated Best Album of the 80's TWICE! Even though it was released in 1979... There are many many many other awards and accolades it has claimed over the years but I feel that it is being forgotten, especially by people of my generation. And so I am here, doing my civic duty reminding you all of this great album.

The Album starts of with the classic, London Calling. A funky, Ska-esque guitar sound playing the simple 2 Chord intro/main riff accompanied by an on time 1,2,3,4 Drum beat starts off the song. This builds up with a sliding bass part. The verse starts with apparently post-apocalyptic themed lyrics about the fall of London. If you look at this song as a whole, it isn't a musical masterpiece and it hasn't really done anything very special. But There's something about it. I would definitely put it as one of the best songs of all time, I love this song, but I have absolutely no idea why?

Track 3, Jimmy Jazz, is definitely my favourite song on the album. It's very chilled, the lyrics are kinda violent at times, but that's how I like my "chill out" music, Violent. A clean guitar with, I think, a flanger (Don't quote me.) begins the song and it is then joined by a happy whistled tune. I love how the first two lines are kinda slurred "The Police Walk in for Jimmy  Jazz, I say He ain't here but he sure went by." this makes it sound like he's in a bar. Come to think of it,  the whole song is kinda slurred really. Even the instruments.

Track 5, Rudie Can't Fail, is a happy song with almost a reggae feel. I am NOT saying this song is in any way but it just has that vibe. I love the brass section on this song especially. It features in most of the songs on the album but I really like how they are used in this song. The song is very layed back and chilled out. In fact almost the entire album is very layed back and chilled. I can't help but smile or jump around pretending I can dance when I listen to this album, but this song especially.

Track 6, Spanish Bombs, is probably my second favourite song on this album, but it's hard to judge really. There are so many great songs on this album. There's something about the vocals of this song that make it so brilliant. Even though the lyrics are kinda inaudible, I love the vocals. Almost uplifting somehow.

If I were to give a mention to every song on this album, I think I would start repeating myself. Because the whole album makes me happy, bubbly, smile or perhaps some other positive adjective you may relate to. There is however one thing that bothers me and no matter how much I think about it, it still puzzles me. This album is classified as punk. Not Pop-Punk, not Punk-Rock or any other variation of punk. It's classified as punk and this album came out at the height of the punk revolution no less. So surely there must have been some complaining by the hardcore punks at the time demanding it's genre to be changed. Because if you listen to the proper Punk of that time, ie. The Sex Pistols, Black Flag, The Dead Kennedys. They are much heavier and angrier than this. And yet, The Clash still happily label this album as Punk and no-one tried to stop them.
But here's my opinion. I think that even though this wasn't angry, loud and heavy. The Punks still liked it. I think they had a soft spot for this album and even the hardcore punks where proud to associate themselves this this album. Oh those softies!

This is definitely an album that everyone should own. It is a timeless classic album.

Here's a link to London Calling and Jimmy Jazz on YouTube.

Please Leave a Comment telling me what you think of my blog and of The Clash. I'd love to get your feedback. Good or Bad.

Please if you like it Follow my blog, the follow button is in the top right corner. And if you think any of your friends need to find more music, tell them about my blog!
And so I'll give you guys another recommendation next week Wednesday, so until then, Turn Up the Volume and Plug in Your Head.

Xtian Zzyzx

Monday, 25 July 2011

New Time

Due to Post-Weekend Demotivation, time issues and potential last minute home work due, Plug in Your Head will be moving to Wednesdays which will  hopefully be more convenient for everyone.

Thank You All,
Xtian Zzyzx

Monday, 18 July 2011

Billy Talent- Billy Talent II

I've had the sudden realization that I live an unhealthy lifestyle and well (Trying my best not to sound to sound like a chick) I feel Fat! And so I've decided to start going to gym again. But this however has brought about the VERY difficult question of, What the hell am I gonna listen to at gym? Because anyone who has ever been to a gym knows that, gym is boring! It's dead boring. And yet people still go. And so I realised that the only way I'm gonna make paying people to let me pick up heavy things and run around aimlessly any fun, is if I have some music to listen to. But this now presents another difficult problem. I can't just listen to anything. Blues is too slow, metal can be too fast and so I came up with the perfect solution! Punk!

Now while Billy Talent may not necessarily be punk, I've been listening to them quite a bit the last few days and well, it's close enough to punk. Billy Talent may be pretty famous, but lets be honest, the only song by them the majority of people really know is Fallen Leaves. And yes, it is a cool song but it's been over played and so I'm here to give you some BT that many of you may not know.

One of the things I love about Billy Talent is the riffing of their guitarist Ian D'sa. Because Billy Talent only have one guitarist, Ian drops his Tuning to D and so he can play Rhythm and lead at the same time, which is done really well. The first song on Billy Talent II is, Devil in a Midnight Mass. The song starts with an awesome riff which carries on throughout most of the song. As far as I can tell, the song is about trust and lack there of, as is most of the album. Really cool song and it's a great upbeat song to get you into the album.

The next song is one of their most popular songs, appearing on the snowboarding game SSX- On Tour (Which is shit compared to SSX 3) It includes more epic riffage (Now a word recognized by the oxford dictionary!) It's really upbeat and well if I could dance I think it would be possible to dance to this. But until I actually get around to learning to dance I'll just jump up and down very enthusiastically to it.

Track 4, Worker Bees is one of my favourite songs on the album. Starts out with a pretty basic and yet pretty damn hardcore bass line. As far as I can tell, the songs about how they must, "Protect the Hive from Enemies." I'd like to say I understand this subject matter, but to be honest I have no Idea what the hell the songs about. But I love the song regardless of antagonistic honeybee references.

Track 6, Fallen Leaves, is of course the most popular song on the album, but after hearing the original, the remixes and the badly done covers so often, I'm really sick of it. It is an awesome song if you haven't heard it a thousand times before so go check it out.

Finally, my favourite song on the album, Track 13, Burn the Evidence. It's the last song on the album and what a way to end such an awesome album! More epic "riffage" accompanied by a thumping bass line and well, mediocre lyrics, but still an awesome song.

This is definitely one of my favourite bands, I don't go anywhere without my Billy Talent beanie on. And this is my favourite of their albums. I unfortunately missed the opportunity to see them live last year at Oppikoppi music festival, which sent me into a deep depression for a few weeks. I love this band and I'm sure you all will to.

Here's a link to Fallen Leaves and Devil in a Midnight Mass on YouTube.

Please Leave a Comment telling me what you think of my blog and of Billy Talent. I'd really love to hear what you guys have to say.

Please click the follow button in the right corner of the screen. C'mon! You know you want to!

And so I'll give you guys another recommendation next week, so until then, Turn Up the Volume and Plug in Your Head.

Xtian Zzyzx

Monday, 11 July 2011

Green Day- Kerplunk

I always feel embarrassed to admit that I like a mainstream band, and when I do say so I always try to give an excuse as to why I like that band, but in this case I've given up being embarrassed 'cause when you think about it, there's no reason to dislike Green Day.
I while ago I spoke about that one album that made a band super famous and how that is generally not their best album, and while I love American Idiot. It isn't Green Day's best album (In my opinion) even though it is the album that launched them into super-stardom. My favourite album by them is weirdly their most unpopular album. Kerplunk.

Now as with every recommendation I do, I'm gonna start at Track One, 2,000 Light Years Away. The song starts off with some awesome Tre Cool Drumming, a 4 Chord Punk Riff and some pretty badass bass! The song is about a girl Billie-Joe Armstrong met one a tour where they where supporting  Rancid, and how he missed her, seeing she lived so far away, (2,000 Light Years away) the sweet thing about this story is that in the end he actually married her, and, Adrianne is a recurring theme in this album and most Green Day albums. This song is a really cool way to start this album and it has some of the most amazing drumming I've ever heard!
The thing that I really love about this album is the drumming. It's almost like he is trying to compete with the guitar and almost riff on the drums. I just wish Tre Cool kept this caliber of epic drumming throughout all their albums.

Something really cool about this album that most people don't really know about is Track 3, Welcome to Paradise! The Dookie version is one of their most famous songs but what most people don't know is that it wasn't the original.It isn't as well mixed as it was in Dookie seeing they were still signed to an indie label, but it's still an awesome song. I love the vocal harmonies, which aren't as prominent in the Dookie version and which weren't very prominent in the "Punk" scene at that time either.

Now my favourite song on the album is Track 4, Christie Road. Starts with a really cool drum beat and really simple guitar, but it works. I love Billie's voice in this song and about half way through the song it goes upbeat and a little more punky.

Track 6, Dominated Love Slave, is an odd but really funny song, sung by the drummer, it's a song about... A Dominatrix! Little strange but so are most Tre Cool songs.

And finally, the last song, The Who's My Generation. Really cool song and covered really well. I'm a huge Who fan so I was really impressed to find this song on the album! I always had a suspicion that Green Day was hugely influenced by The Who, seeing Tre Cool's drumming is so similar to that of Keith Moon, he even uses the same drum kit as him.

This is over all my favourite Green Day album. It's not as serious as their later "Punk-Rock Operas" or as juvenile, for that matter, as Dookie, (Even though both names are about shit.) Definitely give this album a listen, even if you don't like them, Kerplunk might surprise  you. This is one of my all time favourite bands so just give them a try.

Sorry if my writing slowly deteriorated during this Recommendation as I just found out my PS3 crashed (AGAIN!) But thank you for reading this weeks Plug in Your Head.

Heres a link to2,000 Light Years Away and Cristie Road on YouTube.

Please, PLEASE I ask you every week to leave comments telling me what you think of Green Day and my page, I'd love your feedback. Please Click follow it's right there.

And so I'll give you guys another recommendation next week, so until then, Turn Up the Volume and Plug in Your Head.

Xtian Zzyzx

Monday, 4 July 2011

Eluveitie- Slania

So this is my situation. I just came back from the hospital where my step father just got out of surgery because of a motorcycle accident. I get home to start writing, I rush to my room and turn on the lights. Oh yeah, I forgot! My abnormally tall friend hit his head on the light bulb in my room and managed to break it earlier last week. But that's alright, I can type in the dark. I plug in my laptop and... It finally packs in (Crap-Top). So desperate times call for desperate mesures. *Gulp* My Step Dad's laptop... He has managed to take a pretty good PC and turn it into absolute horse-shit! How, I don't know. But it's okay, I have patience. So after half an hour of trying to turn it on only to realise it's been on the whole time (It's that slow) I look for his web browser... *more-defined-GULP* HE ONLY HAS EXPLORER!!! This takes slow to a whole other level. So after all that, I'm in enough of a pissed off mood to do my one month reccomendation! The Folk-Metal band, Eluveitie. Now to those of you who don't know who Eluveitie are, well they're a Gaulish Folk-Metal Band, and my favourite band at the moment.  ApparentlyEluveitie is Helvetic Gaulish for "I am Helvetian" and Wikipedia says it's pronounced, /ɛlˈveɪti/ (???) And they are based in Switzerland... Thank you Wikipedia.

I chose the album Slania because it was the first album I heard of them and it is as good a place to start as any when discovering this band.
The album starts with the track Samon, which begins with some talking in Gaulish, however seeing it is an extinct language, I could not use the powers of the internet to find out what they are saying. This then breaks into a powerfully beautiful instrumental for the rest of the song, played by all band members including Bagpipes, Flutes, Fiddle, Metal drumming, Electric Guitar and Hurdy Gurdy (Coolest name for an instrument ever!) I think out of all the weird line-ups I've spoken about so far, this one is the weirdest! Even if this sound harmless, be warned, this is classified as melodic death-metal.

The next song, Primordial Breath starts out with Gaulish chanting, played backwards and then goes into full on metal, this song is awesome and as I was exploring music given to me by a friend, this is the song that stood out among the hundreds of other songs. I'm trying to listen to it on YouTube now, but this computer just can't handle it... (sigh) It's got awesome metal riffing and double bass drumming, very cool!

It then goes to everyone's favourite Eluveitie song, Track 3, Inis Mona, (Hey! "Mona" is practically the only part of any song name the computer hasn't spell checked yet!) It starts with whistles going into some very hard core guitar, and growling vocals. I love this song because it is a perfect presentation of this bands originality and skill in writing. I love the break down and they even manage to make a whistle solo hardcore! This is the song that really made me fall in love with this band.
Track 6, Bloodstained Ground is a showcase of how metal this band can really be, however they still manage to incorporate their folk instruments. I feel like I want to talk about every song on this album, I really love EVERY song on this album, but that's just me being a fan boy. 

I mentioned in an earlier post that I can listen to a song just because I love one part of the song, well that's the case with Track 7, The Somber Lay. If you listen to the intro, I love the effect they use on the whistles, and if you listen to Eluveitie's earlier stuff, you'll hear they do this alot with their drumming. I absolutely love this song.

This is my favourite band (At the moment) and I feel, everyone should check this band out, because they are one of the only true visionaries left in the music industry, and even though not very many of the songs on this album are in Gaulish, They have some respect for their heritage and manage to play some Gaulish music as well as English

This is a very special edition of Plug in Your Head, it is one month since I started, and although it may not be alot, I really didn't think I would have made it this far. I have grown as a writer already from this blog, and I hope I have helped some of you discover new music.

Here is a link to Primordial Breath and the music video of Inis Mona on YouTube, (Watch it. A guy head banging with the bag pipes never gets old.)

Thanks alot for the support over this month. Please Follow my blog, the button is in the top right corner of the page.

Please leave comments telling me what you think of Eluvietie and my page, I'd love your feedback.

And so I'll give you guys another recommendation next week, so until then, Turn Up the Volume and Plug in Your Head.

Xtian Zzyzx
Blog Ping Tool