“Under Pressure”

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While this is a great song, it’s not quite what I intended for today.

I was checking out Dangerous Minds (as usual), and I came across a post today about technology that can make music visible.  I’m not even going to pretend I understand any of the technical stuff, but I watched the video they embedded in the post, and it looked pretty impressive.  It of course made me think of one of my favorite itunes features: the visualizer.

Visualizer is a setting in itunes that essentially plays a screensaver-like show of colors, shapes, and lights in time to whatever song happens to be playing.  (Click here for an example of what it looks like. I recommend going full screen.)  Of course, the visualizer harkens back to the old days, when venues like the Fillmore East would project a light show on the screen behind the performers that looked a bit like a lava lamp (an effect created with mineral oil, coloring of some sort, and alcohol moving under the heat of a lamp).  It was cool stuff, one of the few aspects of Psychedelia I actually appreciate.  But the patterns created in the liquid light show were pretty random.  I can’t imagine anyone operating the projector and slides would be able to exert that much control or rhythm over a bunch of floating colors.

How this led to “Under Pressure” isn’t really clear, except that I think this song lends itself very nicely to viewing on the visualizer.  The opening notes pulse with energy, and the whole song just soars.  Whoever directed the video for this song did a nice job of creating images that support the combination of David Bowie, Freddie Mercury, and music.  But I bet the Fillmore light show would’ve made it seem even more special.

Freaky Friday: Huh?

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I’m a little kefuffled right now.

Umm, yeah.  Okay.  So that just happened.

I’m not quite sure what just happened.  But there it is.  In full color.

Dangerous Minds has actually been doing my work for me again, because that’s where I first saw this clip by a mysterious entity called Zek Nab.  Marc Campbell, the original poster over there, didn’t quite know what to make of it either.  All I can think is Windham Hill meets The Hobbit.   Seriously, it looks like some of my geeky friends from high school got together in present day to dress up as Tolkien characters and play-synch along with some 90s New Age music.  I googled Zek nab just to see what came up, and at least two of the links led back to the DM post; most of the others were for various YouTube videos (this one is pretty wild, too).  It’s kind of jaw dropping, like a horrible car accident or Mariah Carey video.

I’ve got nothing else to add to this.  It’s just too weird for words.  But I will echo Marc Campbell’s call for more information.  If you know who or what Zek Nab is–or if you are a member of Zek Nab–please reach out and let me know just what the hell you were thinking.

“We’re Not Gonna Take It”

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A while back I posted this when I was in a really bad mood after receiving my pizza very, very late from a certain national chain (it was kinda cold, too).  I declined to name the chain because even though I don’t have a ton of followers, I really don’t want to encourage any endorsement/boycott of any goods.  That’s not the goal of this little blog.  But after reading this over at Dangerous Minds today (and I really need to update my links so that they’re on the regular list), I’m breaking my silence.  In honor of Madame Weebles’ great feature ( sample here):  Fuck you, Papa John’s!

Yeah, I used to like Papa John’s.  It was okay for what it was (and the price), and the garlic sauce and pepperoncini were pretty awesome.  And yeah, I knew the man himself was something of a Republican wingnut, donating and campaigning for The Money Grubbing Capitalist Whore that lost the election last week.  But I can ignore that stuff sometimes (it takes a lot of mental gymnastics, though).  Now that I know how he treats his employees, and that he’s going to use the Affordable Health Care act to justify both raising prices and treating his employees even worse, I’m officially done.  You suck like a Hoover, John Schnatter.  Or maybe a Dyson, since they apparently never lose suction (I wouldn’t know; I can’t pay $600 dollars for a vacuum).  I was lukewarm in my decision not to buy your pizza anymore; there was a chance I might go back someday.  Not anymore, boyo.  I don’t spend a ton of money on pizza, but you ain’t gettin’ any more of it from me.  And I’m going to actively send EVERYONE I KNOW to other pizza establishments.  You are now the Wal-Mart of pizza chains for me.

You know, this song just gets better with age.  I always liked the video, partly because it featured Neidermeyer from Animal House, but the song was never on my playlist before.  It’s growing on me more and more, though.  It’s kind of simplistic, but the best slogans always are.  Twisted Sister was not exactly a talent-filled powerhouse band, but they had a couple of decent hooks.  The bad make-up and idiotic outfits turned off a lot of people (me included), and scared the piss out of the PMRC.  Secretly though, I think it was this song that scared the establishment more.  This is encouraging people to throw off the yoke of conformity and fake morality.  This is what’s really dangerous about rock music.  Not the sex or drugs, but the fact that you can–and should–think for yourself.  And that you shouldn’t do what the authorities tell you to do just because they’re in charge.  “Your life is trite and jaded, boring and confiscated.  If that’s your best, your best won’t do.”

I’m not gonna take it anymore.  At least not from Papa John’s.