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Category Archives: review

Guess what. After a multi-year bout of writer’s block, I managed to write three sets of lyrics in the past week! Sadly, I have no recording equipment (specifically, a microphone,) which means I can’t add vocals to the music tracks, which means this post will contain lyrics only.

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Eyes Wide Shut was a very strange movie. Whether it was good or not is a much more divisive question, and one which I will leave up to the reader. However, what caught my attention more than anything else was the score used in the infamous masked orgy scene. Having purchased the soundtrack, which I determined to be mediocre overall, I learned that the piece was entitled “Masked Ball” and was composed by British violinist, Jocelyn Pook.

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Part one of this list took us up to the end of the Fab Five era. It’s hard to believe that that era comprised a mere five years out of a 30+ year career, and there’s a ton of singles left to list.

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“The List” is a series I’m starting where I will review and rate a list of items, usually musical in nature. I can’t think of much more to say than that, so I won’t waste your time with pointless verbiage, cause this list is a long one!

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It’s sad that after almost 90 years of existence, the NFL still has no idea who their target audience is. In a poorly received attempt to seem “hip” the Superbowl featured Christina Aguilera singing the national anthem, and the Black Eyed Peas doing the halftime show. Both of these choices proved to be embarrassments.

In fairness, Christina Aguilera can sing her proverbial ass off. Unfortunately for the NFL that’s exactly what she did. Flubbing the lines to The Star Spangled Banner, while a tad unprofessional, can easily be hand-waved away as mere nerves. Unfortunately (I’m using that word a lot) the lyrical gaffe was far from her most egregious error. In fact, I didn’t even notice it until it was pointed out to me later because I couldn’t understand the words, because she had completely obliterated the melody with the sort of vocal histrionics which has made modern R&B unlistenable. This was the culmination of a trend in which singers forget that they are supposed to lead the crowd in singing the anthem rather than perform it themselves. Even then, though, most “performers” still sing the song mostly straight, usually restricting their egos to a bit of melisma in the “land of the free” line. Beyonce and the Zac Brown band deserve credit for resisting even that temptation. Aguilera simply embarrassed herself, and arguably disrespected the national anthem.

Now on to the Black Eyed Peas. Really, a funny bit of wikipedia vandalism summed it up better than I ever could: The Black Eyed Peas’ halftime show displayed less professionalism than the average high school musical. Will.I.Am couldn’t resist changing the lyrics to one song to throw in unwanted politics, Fergie barked like an old lady, and those other two guys were… present. The only two high points of their show were the sudden, unexplained appearance by Slash, and the look on my parents’ faces when I informed them that the band hadn’t even played their worst song.

The problem with the show isn’t just that the Black Eyed Peas are bad, it’s that they don’t belong there. The NFL’s audience consists primarily of working class and middle class white males. This isn’t to say that women, minorities, and rich people don’t watch, but when the chips fall we all know who pro-football’s fanbase is. This is why the halftime shows that have worked best have been blue-collar rock acts: Tom Petty, Bruce Springsteen, The Rolling Stones, U2. Prince was a bit of a stretch, but even he had the good sense to put together a rockin’ set list instead of trying to force his more R&B flavored stuff on the audience. The point is that pro football has a sort of aura of blue collar, “clinging to their guns and religion,” middle America. Petty and Springsteen fit this image, as do U2, the Stones, and to a lesser extent Paul McCartney despite not being American.

Naturally this goes double when the game is Pittsburgh vs. Green Bay. Thank God the game itself was great, because the music could hardly have been worse.

Since I no longer visit In This Very Ring, I’ve decided to transport this yearly tradition to my own blog. Every year, the denizens of that board post their top ten albums of the year. Being the music lover that I am, I never miss a year. So without further ado, here are the top ten albums of 2010.

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