Wednesday, 31 August 2011

Them Crooked Vultures- Them Crooked Vultures

So today I started reading the Biography of Led Zeppelin, When Giants Walked the Earth, I've only gotten as far as the part on the formation of the band but it's really interesting! Led Zeppelin were supposed to be a super group! Page wanted Keith Moon and John Entwhistle from The Who, Jeff Beck (Former Yardbirds member and Guitar God!) and Steve Marriott from The Small Faces. And at one point, I think Stevie Winwood from... Traffic? (Feel free to correct me.)

This would have been a CRAZY line up. But of course he ended up finding Robert Plant, John Paul Jones and John Bonham. This line up however is what we know today as Led Zeppelin, so in a way I'm kinda happy his original line up didn't work out. (But if you wanna check out a song done by most of this line up, Check Beck's Bolero by Jeff Beck.) Now the reason I'm bringing this up is because years later in 2009 the Bassist from Led Zeppelin, John Paul Jones some major muso's tried the same thing. AND SUCCEEDED! Their success was called, Them Crooked Vultures.

Them Crooked Vultures is made up of John Paul Jones (Led Zeppelin) on bass. Dave Grohl (Nirvana, Foo Fighters) on Drums and John Homme (Queens of the Stone Age, Kyuss) on Guitar and Lead Vocals.
I am SO happy this band was formed! Because the last major super group was Creme and (kinda) The Yardbirds, (And who remembers them?... Except my dad.)

I think this band is brilliant. They take a little from all their bands and give it a new fresh twist. I like this... Alot. Now when I first heard this album I wasn't crazy about it, but I guess at the time I was like 13 and didn't really know Nirvana or Led Zeppelin, (I Still Don't know Queens of the Stone Age. I'm getting on it! I have a music back log.) But now I realize how brilliant this band is.

Now the first song, No one loves me, and neither do I, starts out with a 4 Bar drum line. And I love this cuz it kinda gives it this off time-ish feel, even though it isn't really. Then the guitar comes in and I find the guitar in this band really unique in a way. It just feels different to alot of samey 3-chord-pop-punk-lots-of-distortion Bullshit you find now-a-days. I just wish more bands would do this. But to be honest I can't really say why I find this guitar different? I guess it has been done before but it's quite refreshing to hear it again I guess.

Track 2, Mind Eraser, No Chaser, has an awesome intro with that guitar I love again, then the vocals come in and I love this guy's voice! It's really different, but familiar? It's good! I also love the lyrics, I appreciate good lyrics, but I think I'm gonna stop mentioning the lyrics in my reviews cuz I can never really say much about them. Lyrics are a very tricky subject to talk about cuz often lyrics won't make any sense to anyone but the lyricist. I know that if anyone listened to my lyrics they probably would think I was on drugs, but they make sense to me. So I think from now on I'll say something more basic to talk about lyrics, in an almost neanderthalic tone for all you under-developed Trolls to comprehend. From now on I'll say. Lyric Good Or Lyric Bad. Or in  some cases Lyric Shitty!

Now Track 4, Dead End Friends, is FREAKING AWESOME! It appears on the Sound Track for the game Skate 3 and when playing it I put this song on repeat... Untill I'm sick of it. Once again I LOVE the guitar. There's something very classic rock about it with a fresh twist on it and in the solo he keeps hitting dead notes which is kinda hard to notice but it gives it this raw vibe. It also reminds me of guitar hero when the game tells me I fucked up and I'm an idiot.

Track 5, Elephants, does something really unique. It has the intro and then it goes double time when the drums come in and that's impressive cuz that must have been really hard to co-ordinate! I know keeping just one tempo is difficult when in a band, but then again they do have a world class rhythm section.
And then after the sped up part they then slow it down to the same tempo as before with perfect timing, without skipping a beat. All I gotta say to you guys is... Nice!

This album is full of gems. It really is. If I were to give it a genre I'd say, Experimental-mental-rock! (You guys can use that.) This band is kinda just one big rhythm section. The lead guitar isn't that spectacular and I don't fucking care! It's good! Lead is over-rated any way! (I'm just saying that cuz I can't play lead... Sigh.) I definitely recommend this band and I hope we get more from them in the future.

Here's a link to Them Crooked Vultures- Them Crooked Vultures on Grooveshark. The songs are in a weird order, but they're all there.

So tell me guys, What do you think of the new Plug in Your Head look? And tell me what you think of Them Crooked Vultures. You can leave a comment "In the Comment section below" (lol) or you can e-mail me at xtianzzyzx@gmail.com You can also comment and follow me on twitter @XtianZzyzx. It's all in the side bar. You can also +1 this post if you like it. (You can also +1 it if you don't.) And tell your friends.

Finally, you can recommend music at the same addresses or ask me to review an album! I'm up any challenge you can throw at me.

I'll be back next week with another Recommendation, so until then, Turn Up the Volume and Plug in Your Head!

Xtian Zzyzx



P.S. Sorry if you were hoping for the new RHCP album, but I haven't heard it yet. It only came out yesterday so I couldn't buy it.

Thursday, 25 August 2011

Worth The Work

So after 5 Hours I'm done :) Now I think I need sleep. Plug in Your Head is officially up on every search engin ever... And of course it is now up on Twitter, Facebook and stumbleapon.

I hope you all like the new features and the new look. And I'll be back on Wednesday for another Review. If You would like me to review an album, please leave a comment, Send me an email at c.stroud19@gmail.com or Tweet me @XtianZzyzx

Plug In Your Head

Xtian Zzyzx

Following for Charity

So I've been working all night on this Blog. Trying to make it more user friendly and more accessible or whatever. I've gone through CODING! (I'm not joking) and all I ask in return is for you to just follow my blog. Ive gotten to the point where I'm tempted to make a "HOW TO FOLLOW MY BLOG" Step by Step instructional video... Please make an effort to Click the Join This Site button and follow my Blog. and to all of you who do follow my blog. Thank you and please tell your friends!

New Stuff

Plug In Your Head will be (and has been) going through some changes. Look, Ease etc. If you have any suggestions please leave a comment or email me at c.stroud19@gmail.com

Wednesday, 24 August 2011

Xtian On Music

Hey look everyone! Oh wow! Plug in Your Head looks different now! Isn't that a shock? I bet it'll change your whole perspective on life!

...Not Really.

Ok well with a new look, I'm gonna try something different today. Today I'll just talk music, not just one band but music in general.
This Idea came to me while I was in the car going home. I realised that I had a huge stockpile of albums I wanted to review but I just didn't really wanna talk about them. To be perfectly honest I'm going through some weird stage in my music tastes and I've been trying out new genres and I've found some pretty incredible stuff.

Last week I briefly mentioned my new best friend Grooveshark.com and I've been using it to find new stuff! Once I made an account I noticed the Stations tab on the left, I realised that this was a tool that let you choose a genre and it would make you a playlist or a "Radio Station." This got even cooler 'cause when you don't like a song you click "Nah, Skip it" and it will remember that you don't like that song so it will never play it again. And when you do like a song you can click "More of this!" and it will add it to your genre exclusive "Station" more often! I love this site because it really gives unrecognised artists a chance to get noticed.

Anyway, I was in an experimental mood and I decided, while I play World of Warcraft (Don't Judge) I'd listen to the Dubstep "Station." Oh my God, I was just stunned by the complexity and intelligence that goes behind that genre. In South Africa people are huge about House, now I was never entirely sure what House classified as but now I've got it. House is the little brother of Dubstep who eats lead based paint while exploring the contents of his own shit, while Big Brother Dubstep sits on the couch wearing sunglasses in doors, a leather jacket and a smirk that says, "Fuck Yeah, I'm Cool!" However Big brother Dubstep is always high, but we can forgive him.

Now without going too in depth, because I don't want to do a full review, I also found something that surprised me! Good Rap! Now I know y'all is sayin, "Dis sum bullshit! Rap Be Tight!" Or however you inbreed trolls talk. But to be honest I had never found any good rap until I found Immortal Technique! This guy (Or multiple guys (No Homo)) rap about things that matter and not just, How many bitches dey got up in deir crib! T(he)y talk about things like gang violence and politics and... Vegetarians? Either way I find Immortal Technique a breath of fresh air to the Hip Hop world.

I also found out from a friend about another rapper, Sage Francis who is also quite amazing. The thing I really loved about him is the fact that he uses a real band! And my friend (You know who you are) replied with, You can't use a computer to make art. Well said man, but of course there's Big Brother Dubstep to be excluded from that generalisation of course.

Finally I would like to give a mention to one of my icons, the god-father of South African Rock music, Ard Matthews. No he didn't die! But many are saying that his career did.

Ard Matthews, the lead singer, guitarist and front man for SA Rock Trio Just Jinjer appeared on live TV last night to sing the South African National Anthem after the 2011 Rugby World Cup side was chosen. But... Ard forgot the words. And excuse me for my nosey-ness but I'm pretty sure, "Nanana... South Africa!" is not the lyric.
As many of you should know, the South African National Anthem is sung in 11 different languages, (Don't ask me to name them all because I haven't got a clue how to spell them.) and this is a good excuse as to why he didn't remember the words. But I don't blame him, it was live TV and he wasn't drunk so he got stage fright. But he apologized profusely so I accept his apology and I hope that he recovers from this.

Ard Matthews is a really nice guy, in 2010 I took a 10 hour Bus Drive to Knysna to go and see them play and He found out (It's a long story about how he found out and it involves alot of name dropping and many of you wouldn't believe me.) and so Ard came out to meet me and thank me for coming to the show. He signed an autograph and then proceeded to throw up behind a trailer, (What a Rock Star!) Anyway I hope that no-one hates him and hopefully soon I will get around to reviewing one of Just Jinjer's albums.

Anyway that's it for Xtian On Music, maybe I'll do another one of these soon. Please follow my blog. Also could you +1 this post. I'd love to hear what you think of my blog and of the new theme so please leave a comment or E-mail me at c.stroud19@gmail.com

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

Wednesday, 17 August 2011

The Network- Money Money 2020

Hello and welcome to an issue of Plug in Your Head I've been putting off for a while now. You see, I always think, "Ok! Next week I'll do The Network!" But I always forget and do something else. So now it is time.
This is one of the coolest albums ever, EVER! Definitely original and it was a great direction for Green Da... I mean The Network, (Who are not Green Day) to explore. Even if it only lasted 1 album.

Now The Network, (Who are not Green Day) are a 6 piece band including, Fink (Who is not Billie-Joe Armstrong) Van Gough (Who is not Mike Dirnt) and The Snoo (Who is not Tre Cool). And even though the bands true identities are completely unknown, (Due to the masks they wear) we will just have to take their Bio's found on several Green Day related sites as truth. (Even though The Network aren't Green Day.) However here's some funny co-incidences! Did you know that Fink and Billie-Joe Armstrong are both Aquarius!? And that The Network is signed to Adeline Records which is weirdly owned by Billie-Joe Armstrong! But of course these are just co-incidences. (If you haven't gotten what I'm getting at yet, then I suggest you go drink the blue liquid underneath your sink to help clear your mind.... Or kill you.)

Now onto the music! Money Money 2020 (Pronounced Money Money, Two-thousand Twenty) is a brilliant little Ska pass time. It's really funny and contains more references to the sexual frustration of Robots than anything before it. With the possible exception of a couple albums released in the late 80's. It starts out with The song Joe Robot which shows how far The Network are trying to stray from the direction Green Day where going with the Lost Album, Cigarettes and Valentines... Even though they aren't Green Day... The song is about well... I'm not entirely sure really. All I know is that it keeps referring to a story, "It has a beginning. It has an End. It's a beautiful story. But it's pretend." I feel that this album is the only instance that the Key-Tar is allowed. In any other instance it should be avoided to the extent of using human shields to protect you from the 1980's projectile vomit noises it produces.

Staying on the topic of Sexually deprived Robots is Track 4, Supermodel Robots. When the singing starts I can't help but think how much Fink sounds like Billie-Joe Armstrong! Weird Co-incidence! Once again I have no idea what they are talking about in this song because the amount of references to computer parts could only be understood by perhaps an MIT graduate... Or many of my friends. (You know who you are!)

Track 5, the title track, Money Money 2020 uses one of my favourite Music clich├ęs ever! The song starts out with the count, "EINCE, ZWEI, DRIE, VIER!" Now normally during the day I'm always listening to music on my Ipod with only one earphone in so I can still be part of a conversation. However that part didn't ever play in the earphone I would normally use so when I listened to this album for the first time on speakers I laughed uncontrollably at this intro.

Track 6, Spike is quite possibly my favourite song on this album. It largely consists of one sided phone calls made by Spike (Brandon) to drug dealers and eventually his mom and every phone call is basically Spike trying to find a way to get a fix. Then at the end of the song his Girl Friend dumps him leaving him homeless. Which always reminds me of the joke, "Q:What do you call a guitarist without a girlfriend? A:Homeless!"

Tack 8, Right Hand-A-Rama, is about a man's decision to either pay for a hooker, or a beer and a porno magazine. It's quite a happy song and I really liked it until I listened to the lyrics. Now I love it! And you will too because even if you deny it, everyone likes a good old sexual reference.

Track 12, X-Ray Hamburger is literally the weirdest song I have EVER heard. All I can pick out is that perhaps the X-Ray Hamburgers are gods or something? But then after a while it says, "X-Ray Hamburger is you." So you know what. I have no fucking idea what this song is about! Infact trying to review this album is making my head hurt. I  have no idea what the hell they were thinking or what they were on! All I know is that I want more! If anyone who has any say in the future of The Network reads this review please tell the band (Who are still not Green Day) to write a new album.

This album is so much fun to listen to and it's the answer to what Ska is missing. I only wish this band wasn't so underground 'cause I believe people need to hear this album. If it got enough popularity then perhaps it would birth a new wave of new wave! (See what I did there!?)

Seeing I can't find any music videos for this album I'm gonna use my new best friend! Here's a link to the ENTIRE album Money Money 2020 on Grooveshark.com

Please comment people! AND +1 AND Follow AND show it to your friends. Not for me, for the music (Yeah that was cheesy but maybe you guys will respond to cheese.) Anyway, comment and tell me what you think of this album and of my blog. E-Mail me at c.stroud19@gmail.com if you wanna ask me to review an album or if you wanna recommend something to me!


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

P.S. I'd like to give a thank you to my beautiful girlfriend Monica, It is our First Anniversary this Saturday so this Recommendation is dedicated to you. Love You.

P.P.S. Can this count as an Anniversary Present?




Wednesday, 10 August 2011

The Offspring- Rise and Fall, Rage and Grace

In 2008 one of my all time favourite bands came back with a new album! "Woohoo!" Naively thought I. And as I was still young I really liked that album. I may have even said it was my favourite. But now that I am older and wiser, I look back on my younger self with pity and slight disgust. Now I'm not saying that Rise and Fall, Rage and Grace [RFRG] is a bad album, but I looked at it way too highly back then. When I listen to this album I think, "Ah yes, It seems as if The Offspring has grown out of their Youthful Anger and Angst. They are singing about more important topics!" Now tell me this. Who wants to listen to a mature and sensible punk band!? And yes, you may say that they still use some naughty naughty swear words! But they sure as hell aren't singing about sniffing glue any more.

The song starts out with Half Truism, a song that tries to say, We're back and we're as good as ever! However the Operative word in that sentence is "Tries." It starts out with a pretty cool piano piece into the guitar part and I like it but the entire time I can't help but think, you're trying to do something you've already done, and better, With The Kids aren't Alright. Overall this song is kinda average... But still enjoyable

Now Track 3, You're gonna go far kid, Is a cool song. I can't complain about that. I feel like this song is worthy to be a Offspring song! However I can't stand the n-tss n-tss Disco Drumming. It drives me crazy and I just wish the Bass was a little more pronounced and louder. When this album first came out I was so surprised to hear it on the radio. But then I couldn't help but laugh when the Pre-Chorus came and the song went, "Now Dance, F__ Dance! It just ruined the impact of that part!

Now onto Track 4, Hammerhead. I can't stand this song! I'm all for politically charged punk songs, but are they supporting the war in this song? And if you're gonna have a political song, do it subtly like with Holiday by Green Day! The lyrics of this song are terrible, and the music is generic. And what's with the Woo-Hoo's in the backround?

Track 7, Kristy Are You Doing Okay?, is an amazingly sad song. This song really shows how much The Offspring has grown up. But in a good way. The song is about a girl in Dexter Holland's neighbourhood who was sexually abused as a kid. Everyone knew about what was happening but nobody did anything. And so Dexter wrote this song as an apology to the girl. This makes me love this song even more.


After Track 7 is naturally, Track 8! Nothingtown. This song started and I thought Oh Boy! A happy-ish song kinda like I want you bad or Why don't you get a Job. And dammit! That's exactly what I got! It's a great song! I especially like the old school Rock 'n Roll guitar solo. But the Billie Joel like backing vocals near to the end of the song kinda annoy me. But I actually don't mind them. I just keep thinking of Uptown Girl.


Finally Track 9, Stuff is Messed Up. This is possibly my favourite song on the album and the music video is hilarious. However that one line, "Please leave a message on my cell-phone," annoys me.
It always makes me laugh 'cause it's called Stuff is Messed Up, which isn't the real name. Once again, censorship has struck again. I especially love that part where he says everything wrong with society really fast. It's a unique touch.


Actually, when I listen to this again, I know why I loved it so much back then. Besides than the memories I have of this album, it just makes me happy. But there's still alot wrong with it. We may still get some good stuff from The Offspring in the future! Now I think I'm gonna go listen to this album again in fact. I'm feeling all sentimental! I definitely recommend this album to anyone, it makes me respect Bob Rock just a little bit more after that piece of Shit Saint Anger.


Here's a link to Stuff is Messed Up and Kristy are you Doing Okay? on YouTube.


Please Comment! Please Please! Also could you +1 a post if you like it. And if you wanna see me review an album, email me the Band Name and Album to c.stroud19@gmail.com Also, if you like my blog tell your friends!


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

Wednesday, 3 August 2011

Red Hot Chili Peppers- Statium Arcadium

So this weekend I decided to express the freedom my school gives me! I decided I was going to dye my hair Fire Truck Red. I thought it would look awesome. However, after the process was done, the outcome was not as I expected. And even though the hair dresser tried to convince me otherwise it DID NOT end up fire truck red. My hair ended up Hot Pink... However I just took it in my stride and tried my best to give off a very macho "I meant to do that" vibe. But it actually looks really cool. I have dyed my hair pink before, but this is VERY pink. Now I was gonna use my new hair colour as an introduction topic to this weeks recommendation, but my hair is in fact not red. And so now onto this weeks recommendation which actually has nothing to do with what I just said, The Red Hot Chili Peppers- Stadium Arcadium.

I expect that pretty much ALL of my Tens of... Elevens of... actually 7 readers would have heard this album. But to those of you who haven't heard it read on, and to those of you who have heard it, TOUGH! You read on too.

Stadium Arcadium is probably The Red Hot Chili Peppers' [RHCP]  biggest commercial success and I think for once I agree with the mainstream... That sounded very Hipster-Douche-Baggy but it's true, this is my favourite RHCP album and all week it's all I've been able to listen to. Now I know that Stadium Arcadium is a double album but to be honest Disk Two [Mars] isn't nearly as good as Disc One [Jupiter] and also I don't have enough time to mention all 28 songs.

So the album starts out with the really funky (Funky as in the Genre, not the adjective) Dani California. I love the bass-line of this song, and I also love the vocals, however just like with The Clash, I have not yet been able to decipher the lyrics of this song... In fact ANY song on this album. For instance, "Black bandanna, sweet Louisiana. Robbin' on a bank in the state of Indiana. She's a runner, rebel and a stunner. On her merry way sayin; baby whatcha gonna." I'm sorry but I have to ask... What the Fuck! They are very catchy lyrics, but they make no sense! If I had to guess I'd say he used to classic, look around the room and write down everything you see and make it rhyme routine.
Perhaps the Black Bandana he wore the night before was lying on his bedroom floor, and a Bank Robbery was on the news. Throw in a few American States ending in -ana and BAM you got yourself a song that ensures you a happy retirement.
However I really do love this song and maybe if in a Anthony Kiedis mindset the lyrics do make sense, sorta like most modern art!

Track 2, Snow (Hey Oh) is one of my favourite songs on the album, (I really can't choose my favourite.) It's always bugged me how simple RHCP guitar parts are made out to be, (not necessarily saying they are simple) but in this song the guitar really stands out really well. Even if it may seem simple (not saying it is.) And another thing, this song is BRILLIANTLY Produced! Even the little things in the back round that you may not notice unless you're looking for them are brilliantly done and set an amazing atmosphere.

Track 3, Charlie is really up beat, revolving alot around the Bass and very staccato guitar parts, as does Track 5, Hump De Bump which is possibly my favourite song on the album. I love the trumpets, and the bass is CRAZY! Once again, If I could dance, I would to this song. But until I learn how to, I'll just jump up and down to it.

Now Track 4, Stadium Arcadium, is a brilliant song and so not much can be said for it because I don't think words could give it justice. The drums are so amazingly well done, very simple but I love the rolls. I normally don't like guitar parts with too many effects on them, but this song manages to hit that perfect amount and not sound like the Edge from U2 (I'm afraid to announce to all you U2 fans that I won't be reviewing U2, probably ever. 'Cause every song sounds the same anyway.) I also love the backing vocals especially when he says, "Mirror to the Moon." Very simple, but sometime simple is better!

I leave you with this amazing album, hopefully it will keep you all until the 30th when their new album, I'm with You comes out. This album is truly one of the greatest albums of the 2000's and it has something for almost everyone.

Here's a Link to Dani California and Stadium Arcadium on YouTube.

Please Leave a Comment telling me what you think of my blog and of The Red Hot Chili Peppers. I'd love to get your feedback, I even love all you trolls.

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


P.S. Just because my hair is pink, does not mean I'm gay.
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