[Album Review]Act V: Hymns With The Devil in Confessional

Act V
Act V cover

Anyone who knows me knows that I am a giant The Dear Hunter fan. And should start that if you haven’t heard of them, go check them out. If you have heard of them, hear of them more.

Act V is the finale in the 5 act story about the boy. And those who have listened from Acts I to now should know the story well. If you don’t, or just want to catch up without listening(bad move) here is a broken down synopsis of the Acts up until Act IV.

All of the acts have had their ‘meh’ songs. I can safely say Act V has no such song. The whole album from front to back is actually the best thing I have ever heard. Each song is beautiful in it’s own way, and the next song more beautiful than the last.

Lyrically Casey Crescenzo has always been a mastermind, and he’s somehow found a way to top himself with this album. With lyrics such as “I’d bare you my heart if I knew it was still there” “I keep looking for a quicker fix, but I’m afraid to find out what it is.” and “I’m a killer, I’m a killer, I’m a killer. But I’ve been killing myself all along”. Overall, the album has a very dark theme, and it’s amazing.

Instrumentally, the album has it’s own feel. One of the worries of fans was that because Act IV and Act V were recorded at the same time, that they’d sound too similar. That is so not the case, and this Act has a much more theatrical feel. Casey has stepped up his game and made this feel like it was a play for once. Not to mention Act V has some of the best orchestrations of all of the albums, each melody is so amazingly beautiful.

By far the most stand out song is The Have Have Naughts. It features a duet with Gavin Castleton(now a member of the Dear Hunter) and is so incredibly well done, it actually brought tears to my eyes. Lyrically and musically it is the best song on the album in my opinion, however every other song is a close second.

This is an album I can see myself listening to un-shuffled and uninterrupted for months to come, and I really look forward to seeing them live at the Union Transfer on September 30th. This is an album I can never see myself shuffling with other songs even from the Dear Hunter, and an album I can never see myself getting tired of.

Act V: Hymns with the Devil in Confessional comes out Friday September 9th, available on all major streaming services and wherever you can buy music.

Return of The Black Eyed Peas? Not yet anyway.

We’re a little late on this band wagon, but it doesn’t hurt to give our feedback.

5 days ago, the Black Eyed Peas released a new song! Well, kind of.

What we actually got was a new version of their old song, Where is the Love, and a lot of people aren’t sure how to feel about. So what’s good about it? What’s bad?

Lets start with the good. The good is that they’re raising awareness for current issues, much the same way the original version of Where is the Love did. They’ve updated the lyrics to be relate-able to the current news.

Now I’ve gone back and listened to the original, and I have to say even the old lyrics were still very pertinent with today’s issues. However it’s still great they’ve updated the song to be current. It’s also really nice that they’ve included many other artists such as Justin Timberlake, the Game, Dj Khaled,  Jessie J, Jaden Smith, and Usher, to name a few. It of course also has the original Black Eyed Peas group.

The bad, well, it’s different. And only somewhat unnecessary. To me, I’ve felt like the original was always very relate-able. Something I could listen to and still get the message. I understand they’re raising awareness for police violence, and the need for love with today’s situations, I just got the same information from their original song.

 

A lot of people don’t like the song because it’s too different, Will.I.Am uses his well known auto-tuned voice instead of the natural voice he used in the original version, and that change is weird to people. However I actually genuinely liked the video. If you haven’t watched the video yet, it’s linked below, as well as the original(for comparison).


Martin Scorsese, Cocaine, And You: Jeffery On Vinyl 1

scorsese

In part of my everyday worsening mental state, I’ve decided to torment myself with not good not awful HBO show “Vinyl.” A show filled with so much potential it could as Tom Waits once famously sang, “Make a dead man cum.” Except, Terrence Winter, Martin Scorsese, and Mick Jagger ain’t dead. They’re just furiously jacking off as they create of the biggest mixed reactions to a show I’ve ever seen. In a series of I’m not sure how many, I’ll be going through this cluster fuck in a way no one needs and no one asked for. So where else to start, but at the heart of the circle jerk of talent, with the elusive white powder known as coccaine. More specifically how Scorsese is obsessed with and how’s it’s one of the reasons “Vinyl” is suffering in quality.

Anyone’s familiar with “The Last Waltz”, “Goodfellas”, or “Wolf Of Wall Street” will know Martin Scorsese has something of an obsession with both cocaine and rock music sometimes to a fault. “The Last Waltz” is a classic rock documentary, but really is one giant hand job of a film towards Robbie Robertson. The film of course being about what was in theory, The Band’s last concert. Robbie Robertson being the group’s main song writer and lead guitarist. Look them up along with the film if you were confused by anything just typed and/ or think fucking Mumford & Sons is great Americana. Only Canadians do that shit in earnest, oh yeah and Wilco……Regardless that film, somehow managed to have so much coke involved in the production it had to be edited out of the film. Twenty something years, Martin makes a film called “Goodfellas,” an absolute classic of mob movies. It is also a classic for people who like seeing Ray Liotta snorting coke and blabbering about. The eventual demise of the characters is rooted in their dealings with coccaine. So from a behind the sceyes player to plot point in twenty years, but Mr Scorsese is nothing if not a dreamer. And then another twenty years go by and we get “The Wolf Of WalLove Street.” Lots of drugs in the film, lots of white powder. Now we have “Vinyl” which is the basically dependent on its main character slipping back into coccaine and then doing as much of it as possible in 60 minutes. Ok not exactly, but can we just admit that Mr Scorsese needs lay off the white powder. Or maybe he should just make a yule log of a pile of coccaine and retire.

While it’s always a joy to see comedian Andrew Dice Clay do drugs, is it ever really necessary? The answer is a solid no.

Next edition will be a more

Why Kanye’s Fans are Pissed, but Why They’ll Still Listen

There is so much wrong with The Life of Pablo and how Kanye West handled it that it’s hard to know where to begin. I think a good place to start would be the beginning.

When Kanye first announced the album, he had almost no details about the album. No release date, not even a name at first. Then he released the name “So Help Me God” with a single, “All Day”. The single got the fans hyped up and excited, and the album name was just as awesome.

Enter countless false alarms and months of waiting. We had no idea what we were waiting for, but it was going to be awesome.

Then came the first of the name changes. “Swish”. No Kanye, that’s just..lame. SHMG was so much better. We could only wish that was the only lame thing to happen.

He performed for SNL on their 40 year anniversary, and the song he performed with Sia and Vic Mensa was just superb. He left us wanting so much more, and CD quality. Alas, we will never get that. The song was Wolves.

A few months ago he changed the name again, to “Waves”, a step up from Swish, but still meh. We had a release date soon after, February 11th. It would come with Yeezy Season 3.

Then it started getting really weird. Countless tracklist changes, and one final album name change. Day’s before the album came out he changed the name to “The Life Of Pablo” which, due to the conversations and debates and meaning behind the album name, is probably second to SHMG.  The day the album was supposed to come out, there was still silence about how it was going down, which isn’t suprising, nor quite frowned upon.

We did however have the cover art. Quite possibly the worst cover art I’ve seen to date.

The fashion show at MSG was where things went from weird to insane. The show itself was definitely a work of art, just not a very good one. And definitely a very awkward one. Playing a bunch of tracks from the album, that we would later find out weren’t even mastered yet. A bunch of people just awkwardly sitting there, watching the models in Ye’s new(terrible) line.

Near the end of the show, Kanye gave up the aux cord, let other artists play their stuff, and felt more like you were sitting in a car with a big group of friends than anything else.

Even after the MSG show though, there was no download available. We’d later find out through tweets that Ye wasn’t quite done with it.  The next day, after the release date, he released a new tracklist.

The next few days were just constant waiting, and it left a bad taste in our mouth.

The icing on the cake, is that when it finally released after his performance on SNL, it was a Tidal exclusive. And if you wanted to purchase it for download, $20 extra.

After all we’ve been through, waiting, being dissapointed, Kanye said “Eff you” to his fans.

 

And we’ll still listen. Why? Because it’s new Kanye. Because it’s good.