This is an era of suffering and Metal is not immune. Seems like we're crossing our fingers for lotsa people already, like Deftones bassist/really good guy Chi Cheng. Listening to Saturday Night Wrist on um Saturday night, I did a bit of hand-wringing and lamenting his apparent lack of improvement following the November 3 car accident that left Cheng in a coma. But life is cruel and my impatience has been checked brutally this morning upon the announcement that Loudness Higuchi Munetaka succumbed to swift, merciless cancer. Motherfuck. From Blabbermouth:
Drummer Higuchi Munetaka of veteran Japanese metallers Loudness passed away Sunday around 10 a.m. (JST) at a hospital in Osaka, Japan. He was 49 years old. Higuchi was diagnosed with liver cancer in April. He had reportedly undergone two rounds of chemotherapy treatment and an operation to remove part of his liver.
My friends in Japanese Metal love Loudness, explaining that the legendary quartet's Metal spirit easily trumped their mega-cheesiness; kinda like Twisted Sister or Quiet Riot. Makes sense to me. So let's all crank some Loudness and EZO (and S.O.B. and Pulling Teeth and Taiho and Hellchild) in a salute to Mune, who walks off into the endless rock and roll crazy night!



If there's lingering doubt about Faith No More's rise from commercially underachieving alt-metal group to canonized legacy act, it might be put soundly to rest by oh say a FNM reunion tour. A big one. Then we could all get on with our lives. Sure, there'd be bad attitudes (did they ever get along?), but management could keep the band chatter to a minimum and shine a bright, screaming light on FNM's dual mega-classics The Real Thing and Angel Dust (Greatest Record of All Time) as well as the uneven but essential King For A Day...Fool For A Lifetime and Album of the Year. We could be like those hippie people and Rush fans who attend like 10 shows per tour; I'd bring a neurosurgeon to each city so the board signal could shoot FNM directly into my brain. (What kind of cables would that require? email HipstersOutOfMetal@gmail.com.) But with singer Mike Patton kinda bigger than Faith No More for a decade now, could a reunion happen? Kerrang! reports:
Industry insiders suggest that hugely infuential '90s alt-metal band Faith No More is planning to return next year. Kerrang! understands that a number of U.K. venues have been placed on hold for shows from the band next spring, while U.K. festival appearances are rumored to follow in the summer. 

Founding bassist Bill Gould played down the speculation: "If anything like this were to happen, it would have to come from the band, and I haven't spoken with any of them in over a year. So as far as I know, there isn't anything to talk about, and I'm pretty sure that if you were to contact Patton, he would tell you the same thing." 

Despite several years of vigorously denying claims the band would reform, Mike Patton seems to have softened in recent months. In an interview with the Artisan News Service in January, he said "I wouldn't rule it out. I don't think we need to reform the band, but maybe there's other things we could do together."
Patton seems to be hinting at a new album of Faith No More material. Meanwhile, Gould plays dumb. Mike Bordin plays drums with Ozzy ugh, Roddy Bottom is still doing the underrated but clearly not FNM-level Imperial Teen, Jim Martin is probably enjoying a fine pizza. So how about this: We'll all just leave our wallets right here like so, and you guys just take whatever you feel is fair. Go ahead now. That's right. And hey what's this? Why it's a stage! Here let me flip this switch and this one and GO!!!!!!!!! Make loud Faith No More now! 



My ear boner has been throbbing night and day and day and night for the moist Metal vagina of Enslaved's Vertebrae for weeks. That is some sweet action. Don't tell anybody but I've even decamped to the out-of-the-way restrooms at work to gratify myself with a quick song or two from side B. Boy howdy I could sure go for a headlining tour in fact I'd toss an extra $20 on the stage to have Ivar Bjørnson (above) just Tiger Woods me right in the face with his guitar (bridge first). But I guess that's never gonna happen. Stupid life. A band statement via Blabbermouth
It is with great regret that Enslaved has to announce the cancellation of the North American Vertebrae tour [with Swallow The Sun and Keep Of Kalessin] scheduled for May 2009. At the heart of the issue lies a tour that was hard to get together in the first place so we've decided to let the whole tour be cancelled and start working on setting up a new North American tour all the way from scratch again. . . Our sincere apologies to all the fans that were ready to come out to these shows; but rest assured — we are working day and night on setting up the new tour that will replace these dates.
Here's the setlist from a coupla weeks ago at Eindoven's Dynamo Club that's in The Netherlands in sweet, Metal-worshipping Europe:

Fusion of Sense and Earth 
New Dawn 
As Fire Swept Clean the Earth 
To The Coast 
Allfadr Odin 
The Watcher 
Slaget I Skogen Bortenfor



Former sigh Limp Bizkit guitarist Wes Borland is vexing, friends. From some angles, he's an annoying no-talent in a bear suit or some shit. Yet there are times when I think it's just as possible that Borland is a cool, adventurous musician whose work in all honesty might not actually exist; that's how little he even registers on the Hoom!ometer (said like thermometer not smell-o-vision). So who knows? But check out how he sticks it in everybody's face just weeks after sigh joining Marilyn Manson's band; Borland talks about his band Black Light Burns via Blabbermouth:
That's right. Although there will be songs played off Cruel Melody and Cover Your Heart, this tour is going to be primarily used as a proving ground for the new shit. One of the new songs will be released at the beginning of next year on an upcoming soundtrack (more on that later) and we'll be playing that as well. It's been a long time and this band is far from over. We're all looking forward to hanging out and having a few laughs and drinks with some familiar faces as well! These shows are going to go off!
While that's kinda Billy Corgan ("You'll listen to whatEVer I PLAY! SWINE!") to load a setlist with mostly unheard, unproven shit, Borland is cool enough or dumb enough to tell everybody up front. Cuz that pisses people off when bands haul off and play 90 minutes of new songs without warning. Even knowing in advance sucks cuz it's way more fun to be surprised by the opening notes of each song. Shit have you ever seen guys starting screaming really scarily at the band to stop playing new shit? Then other, drunker guys yell at the screaming guys to shut the motherfuck UP and ugh you're in a riot fucking again. Rock on, Wes!



Hopefully we're all beyond psychoanalyzing and then bashing former Pantera singer Philip Anselmo at this point. But looking ahead to the fourth anniversary of former Anselmo bandmate Dimebag Darrell Abbott's death on December 8, it pays to remember that everyone makes mistakes. Just not in the fantastically hateable fashion which Anselmo did by stepping seamlessly into the villain role, with his fucking mouth already. All the same, it's 2008, my head has cooled, and Anselmo talks to Antiquiet:
Not only do I miss those days, and Dimebag and Vinnie, and the whole crew, and the whole vibe, and the pride that was behind it, and the validity that was behind it… As I've said before, Rex [Brown, former Pantera bassist] and I always said that we would have all gotten into one room and argued and screamed… And a lot of it would have been my fault, but at the time I was a wounded duck. I needed back surgery so bad, it was pathetic. And I've uh… I've made some bad choices.
Again with the 'back surgery' thing. But still, you can feel the regret in his words. Honestly, it's been four years; is anyone over this yet? If so, what's your secret? Denial? Drugs? I fucking tried those! Help!!!


Hey Nickelback sure sucks! And yet here's video evidence (thanks MetalSucks) that the Canadian butt-rock quartet doesn't suck as badly as Metallica. We all lose!

'Any Metallica fans in the how-ooose?' BARF.


Look up there at that picture. Go ahead and add some pretty birds tweeting and ribbons flowing through the air and bam! that's how Brandi C. looks through my eyes. Should we marry cough that's the plan cough our first child will be named Angelpie. But B.C.'s run on Rock Of Love Charm School saw its sudden end last night on account of one harmless um drunken loogie, destination: fellow charm schooler Destiney's outraged face. And so that's it VH1 with Megan gone -- and I fought every boner-based urge in my well my boner to gripe about that forthemostpart -- but now The Brandy Sea ousted ... well game fucking over. Those other ta-ramps don't 'rock my world.' They're so ... Actually I'll have to quote the sage DMX re: the remaining mental cases in female form* on ROLCS: "Y'all niggas are characters/Not even good actors."

And yet despite the Brandi C. projectile and Heather's asthma attack (which manifests in outbreaks of plate-throwing and cheap theatrics), Sharon Osbourne still succeeded to shoehorn in some camera time to totally disgrace Metal and her husband, like it or not the King of Metal. Ugh: In the heat of drunk-ass battle, mega-brat Lacey zinged the eminently belittleable Heather, saying "You actually think you're an A-list star!" which is hilarious cuz Lacey was probably exaggerating for effect, which didn't keep Heather from bellowing "I am, betch!" Priceless. But upon hearing of all this, Shosbourne disgustedly states that this kind of talk is senseless and for the record, it is she who is the celebrity. 

Um you? Celebrity? Negatory, old girl. Ozzy is a celebrity. You're just in his shot. P.S. Fuck Riki Rachtman.  

*Not you, Destiney and Kristy Jo you guys are cool. I'm just very upset that's all. P.S. Fuck Riki Rachtman.



Album titles don't matter, but in the case of Axl Rose's long-long-long-awaited follow up to um The Spaghetti Incident?, the title has been the only constant in this exhausting clusterfuck. I defy anyone to accurately parse Rose's intended lyrical themes from aging famous person alienation; but judging from the scattered Chinese dialogue which opens the album, Rose actually is commenting on China on some level. I might be wrong.

We all have read about Rose's hyper-intelligence, which Chuck Klosterman calls "genius," but whoa irony alert!! Look, Guns N' Roses is China, and Axl's stranglehold on the Guns brand name and musical output (acquired through questionable dealings) mimics China's institutionalized human rights abuses and Draconian treatment of dissidents. 'Member when Slash wanted to attend that Guns gig in Vegas? Turned away. Or what about that first post-everybody headline slot at Rock In Rio where Axl petulantly demanded the ejection of a guy dressed like Slash during the second fucking song. Pretty paranoid! 

One great album and "Oh My God" aside, Axl never claimed to be a cool guy; in fact, when he stated this summer that he'd split his complimentary Dr. Pepper with a deserving Buckethead, I almost sent a cookie bouquet to Axl's team of therapists in congratulations for finally nailing the correct dosage of happy pills. Or perhaps, at long last, Axl is just 'being cool.' Just be cool, man.

And what about Chinese Democracy, the album. Well, considering we've had fucking 17 years to trace out every potential permutation of an Axl-led mob of guitarists and producers, I'm shocked to report that CD surprises me. It's blunt, thudding, safe, and plain. Guitar fills haphazardly come and go, lyrics cross from the personal to the private, and CD's groove more closely resembles modern radio buttcore than Los Angeles rat-in-the-gutter rock. But is it good? Or are we merely feeling the afterglow of spotting a unicorn (Klosterman) or losing our virginity (Rosenberg)? It's probably more like getting a tooth pulled. As Axl would say, "Guess we'll just have to wait and see."



Hey isn't it great that the US economy is ass-fucked? See, this way, your dishonest, godless boss can treat you like a step-child and basically ignore the shit out of you, rip you off, belittle your work, and generally make you feel like your shit is meaningless. What are you gonna do in retaliation? Find a new job? Fall back on your savings? Take some vacation days? Oh that's right none of those things actually exist. 

America is awesome with all this freedom; the freedom to be fucked in the face! 



Last week, the very awesome Soilwork opened voting on the setlist for their gruelling-as-fuck 2009 North America tour. Nice move. Already having released like 43 records over three years, a band like Soilwork may be a frustrating live experience, as their rapidly expanding catalogue lessens the superfan's odds of hearing that special Soilwork tune. Luckily, the awesome Helsingborg six-piece shits out career highlights like profanities from an Italian. So go here and vote for those non-hits whose exclusion you lamented on the way home from the last Soilwork show, like Stabbing The Drama finale/best song ever anywhere by anybody "If Possible" (above). Do it!


It's easy to get so deep into Metal that perspective is lost, but occasionally we are jolted back into reality by, say, a TV Guide commercial (above) that demonstrates what Metal looks like through the eyes of your everyday sitcom-humping wimp. Every single shot in the now-ancient 20-second clip is hilarious, but I'm tormented since the basis for this depiction is probably freakazoid, fanless cock-rockers Nitro (compare). Look, I'll tell you the same thing I told that Senate subcommittee: I created Nitro in that lab strictly at the behest of the United Nations who needed to counteract the Communist bloc's dreaded two-pronged Scorpions-Gorky Park capabilities. It's not my fault Nitro ran wild, claiming Lita Ford and countless eardrums as their victims. Where's MY parade, man?



Nine Inch Nails' Trent Reznor announced this week that drummer Ilan Rubin will join the band upon Josh Freese's exit. Here's my beef: Dudes keep referring to the kid as drummer of Lostprophets. Mostly it's the ire and jealousy of seeing a fucking 21-year old join arguably the biggest loud rock touring outfit around, but to tar Rubin by association with LP is silly: After two albums, LP's drummer left; then, ironically, it was Freese who played on third and latest album Liberation Transmission (with the exception of a whopping two tracks credited to Rubin). And then Rubin played on their tour. So you see he's hardly Lostprophets drummer Ilan Rubin. More like seen-in-the-vicinity-of-Lostprophets drummer Ilan Rubin

Sometimes hyper-processed, ghost-written, poser scarf-rock (like Lostprophets) transcends its own lameness to succeed as enjoyable pop. But I rush to point out that LP shouldn't hog this (totally faint) praise: Michael Barbiero (...And Justice For All, Persistence of Time) polished their nu-metal debut, ex-god of rock production Bob Rock helmed Transmission, and the fabulous Eric Valentine is responsible for second outing Start Something. Now, people who didn't blink throughout the early 90s or happened to work at Hollywood Records or had the Encino Man sdtk will tell you that E-Val is from T-Ride, the most intellectual and thrilling hair rock band to ever make it as far as opening a Joe Satriani tour. Then he went on to produce Queens of the Stone Age and cough Good Charlotte. Anyway, T-Ride rules. The More You Know vwwwwwing twinkle *


With the Victoria's Secret fashion show in town, Miami was overrun with hot model vajay this weekend. I gawked briefly at oh about 600 photos of sexy posedroids strolling beachside in bikinis, but imagine my surprise to find snaps of gigantic-assed socialite Kim Kardashian (above, weeeee!), who it seems took an afternoon to privately celebrate the long-awaited sophomore release by prog-metal greats Cynic right there on the band's home turf. I had no idea she was so Metal. You said it, Kim; Traced In Air is tits


After their many contributions to Metal music, yes including their much-maligned-by-old-people records since Seasons In The Abyss, Slayer's greatest quality is their calm, measured, total contempt for suck-ass Metallica. Stormbringer asks Tom Araya his opinion of Death Magnetic:
You don't wanna know. I heard the album. That's all you wanna know. I heard the album. [Laughs] I'm being serious. It didn't appeal to me at all. And all I could think about was, 'Man, what happened?' 

I thought it was a great idea to release [new Slayer single] "Psycopathy Red" ... to show people that [the reason for Death Magnetic's shittiness] is not Rick Rubin; it's Metallica. It's what the band brings to the table. People are always comparing albums. So now they have something that they can compare it to. 
Well in all fairness, LarsCorp was just buying the Rick Rubin brandname in a misguided attempt to woo hipsters, the talking point-starved media, and produceophiles ahem [sic]. But since Rubin got like eight production credits in 2008 alone, one wonders to what extent he works on any of those albums. Ya know, beyond the obvious hey-try-to-make-it-like-your-good-album-from-N-years-ago tip. That'll be $600K plus points.



To devote myself to the critical first listen to complicated Metal records, it's essential that I administer proper dosage of my attention deficit medication (pot) lest I be distracted by today's sudoku or those unidentified white spots on my potted palm. Indeed, after ripping a couple um doses, I just stare into the middle distance while nary a nuance escapes my tinitus-dulled hearing. In that state, my concentration is such that I actually can hear smells. Turn down that garlic!

We all know that some records stick to safe confines and require only one listen to comprehend blah bling blarg. But after one spin of the baffling prog-death outing Planetary Duality from Los Angeles sextet The Faceless, my understanding of the album is so superficial that I hesitate to lazily throw around influences (Atheist, Cynic) or contemporaries (Byzantine, Sikth) or even peddle some reviewerese (spellbinding, punishing, challenging). Which means either The Faceless record is awesome, or that I wasn't baked enough. I'd better try again tonight, so while I cancel plans to read to elderly people, listen to all of Planetary Duality and hear what all the confusion is about. 


It's as though a warm breeze cleansed HooM! Headquarters this weekend thanks to my acquisition of the brand new 4-in-1 Lethal Weapon complete set ($13!). One new inclusion to the director's cut is a first act-scene in which Riggs, standing upright, downs a sniper from a hundred yards. With a pistol. Preposterous, surely, but not as wildly retarded as my other big get, The Crown's 14 Years of No Tomorrow (above), disc one of which bears a pathetic, self-worshipping ahem documentary of the ill-fated band. Composed mainly of title cards and more title cards, the 70-minute doc feels more like a series of trailers written by a pre-teen Goosebumps enthusiast. Band interviews? Not really. Rare live footage? Relegated to disc 3. Insight or narrative of any kind? Fail. Since 2002, I'm basically one night of partying away from a Crown face tattoo yet now I'm more inclined to a quick seek-and-kick-nuts mission upon those responsible for this abortion. 

Metal people, don't be the next casualty of embarrassing, corny DVDs, like God Forbid's hilariously-titled Beneath The Scars of Glory and Progression. Um, huh? It's your stupid DVD, dudes, not a conquest of distant moons. In fact, don't comment on your own band ever, you semi-literate dunces. That's the exclusive domain of semi-literate wannabe dunces on the internet.



I kinda got yelled at for defending the actions of Kyle Drinkwine, Wisconsin's Karaoke Clobberer. But but but The Smoking Gun's version of the events gives the impression that Drinkwine was defending Metal from its abusers, in this case a couple of chuckleheads butchering Dio's "Holy Diver." But after a fresh look at the report and Drinkwine's telling mugshot, it began to dawn that TSG's account is misleading and that Drinkwine might've been the aggressor in a very un-Metal, downright jockish attack. (It seems that a few dozen Blabbermouth commenters -- true, not exactly a Metal think tank -- had come to the same erroneous conclusion I did.) 

Anyway, I'll set the stage for another reversal/correction by saying FUCK Kyle Drinkwine and his awesome name. But if this whole thing goes to illustrate my idiocy and that of Drinkwine, we're still mere pretenders to the grand throne of fuckheadery belonging to Jerry Montano, mega-idiot. When not playing on roundly ignored records (Nothingface, The Deadlights, Danzig, HellYeah!) or making drunken gun threats toward Vinnie Paul, Montano has taken to getting his ass kicked by half-ass pop-country dicklesses. Ugh. From TMZ:
Montano (ass-kickee) is suing the chaps off John Rich (ass-kicker) for that October beatdown in Rich's room at the Mondrian Hotel in L.A. 

In the lawsuit, filed Monday in L.A. County Superior Court, Jerry claims that before the violence, he was warned by Rich's business manager that the star often became "extremely violent when drunk" -- but decided to go back to [Rich]'s hotel room anyway. While in the room, Jerry claims Rich became "increasingly violent and belligerent" over a girl. 

Now Jerry is suing for an undetermined amount for costs related to the "cuts, scrapes, permanent scarring, swelling, and bruising to his lips, jaw, face, teeth and nose." Montano told us last month that he wasn't going to press charges -- but Jerry didn't tell us he wasn't gonna charge for it.
What the fuck is Montano doing in John Rich's hotel room? They should settle this with a grenade battle to maximize fatalities. Because they should all die. By grenade. 



I accuse myself of sporting a boner for producers and if that be true, then Metal Inquisition is the opposite. So MI has a vagina for producers. Huh that doesn't sound right. Moving right along MI took time out this week to make a load fun of Alex Perialas, metal producer with unforgivable taste in eyewear. 
You see, long before Scott Burns was making dozens of dollars producing albums for the likes of Obituary, Sepultura and Hellwitch at Morrisound Studios, Alex Perialas was toiling away behind the knobs for such legendary, life-changing recordings as U.S.A. for M.O.D. With all this in mind, how could we not use our investigative powers to give our readers more information about the kind of life and fortune that producing Overkill's landmark recording Fuck You can grant a man?
Har I love a buncha Perialas-produced albums, namely Overkill/Under The Influence, Nuclear Assault/Game Over, Bad Religion/No Substance, Vio-lence/Oppressing The Masses. With the exception of the first four Testament records, no Perialas production could exactly be called 'revered' or even 'successful.' (Not to mention the disgrace of Pro-Pain and M/S.O.D.) Held in marked contempt is When The Storm Comes Down by Flotsam & Jetsam, which is INSANITY. But hey that's what you pay me for so blam (above, bad cover art). 




Once, at a party, I laughed a gulp of margarita right out of my mouth when this guy referred to Rolling Stone/Guitar World/Entertainment Weekly/Revolver/MTV writer Jon Wiederhorn as the 'hackiest hack that ever hacked.' I don't hate Widerhorn just everything he's written ever in history, and in a display of extreme pettiness went elsewhere than Headbanger's Blog for quotable material on under-the-weather Mastodon guitarist Bill Kelliher. Angry Ape is pretty hipster, but they do an awesome job on incomprehensible UK girl group drama. Plus for this story they have a geographical advantage so Angry Ape take it away:
Doctors in London have been monitoring his condition since November 3, which is "improving at press time." It's not known what is exactly wrong with Kelliher.

This won't affect the rest of the band's tour however, as the remaining members - Troy Sanders, Brann Dailor and Brent Hinds - will continue as a three-piece.
To the members of Mastodon (above, it's blurry live shot day): A three-piece ... Ok fine but are you not aware that there are losers in bedrooms/basements all over the PLANET ready to step into Kelliher's role for a few nights? All those hours spent perfecting the (awesomely inventive) guitar parts on Blood Mountain weren't just in service of my sick fantasy world, dude; I have drugs for that. That tab book was like thirty bucks! Call me! 


It's hard to overestimate the life-changing power of ...And Justice For All, the final album by Metallica (1983 - 1989 RIP). I remember being coached on the proper loading of the ahem compact disc and my shock when the display showed nine songs at an intimidating 65 minutes. That was nothing compared to the effects of "Blackened"'s slowly massing army of sustaining guitars, soon roused into tight formation by Lars' arid, violent snare drum. My jaw and balls dropped even before Hetfield uttered a word. (I shat myself right around Lady Justice has been rrraped.) Hard to believe Justice was sent my way by our school's hunky king of cool kids (with whom I'd sneak cigarettes after choir ha). 

Sounds like Cephalic Carnage guitarist/coolest guy ever Zac Joe (above) feels the same way. From Decibel:
Back then, of course, production value made no sense to me and was of no concern, but you could tell [...And Justice For All] was groundbreaking and would come to set the standard. From the opening swells of the guitar to the aggressive accents of the first riff, you knew this was going to seriously kick ass. They had refined everything about themselves, including their political observations. I’ve never liked a Metallica album since.
I’m definitely proud that Metallica was the band that got me started, as opposed to Pantera or even Korn. I feel bad for those kids. I really do. They missed an exciting era, before the inevitable attack of the clones. Thanks Metallica for four great albums ($5.98 EP is fucking priceless as well) and what seems to be a surprisingly good new one. You may never know how much you meant to one half-retarded kid in Wyoming, but you made a world of difference.



This is no joke, friends. In Wisconsin, a longtime Metal party stronghold, it is at your own peril that you treat Metal with frivolity. Flaunt our laws and prepare for the consequences, as dispensed by the hilariously named Kyle Drinkwine, The Dairy State's defender of Dio. From The Smoking Gun:

Kyle Drinkwine, 24, of Wisconsin, allegedly became so incensed by a lackluster karaoke performance of a heavy metal song that he assaulted the singer and a second man, police charge. According to a River Falls Police Department report, Drinkwine throttled singer James Mischler, 28, and his friend Cyrus Kozub, 29.

Kozub told TSG that Mischler was performing "Holy Diver," the title cut on Dio's 1983 debut album. Following the assaults, police apprehended Drinkwine after a short foot chase. A subsequent Breathalyzer test recorded his blood alcohol content at .169, more than twice the state limit. Drinkwine was booked into the Pierce County Jail on battery and disorderly conduct counts. 

Though Drinkwine declined to speak with cops following his arrest, an officer overheard him, during a jail phone call, tell a friend he "fucked up" and was arrested for fighting. 
A short foot chase? Awesome. The heroics of Drinkwine (above) inspire us all; next chance I get I'm gonna clobber that moron who keeps butchering all those Queensryche songs. Y'know. Geoff Tate.


Metal means smashing elitism and pretension, but allow me to mount my high horse and say that this shit (above) is not okay. Metal profiteers like Sharon Osbourne and goofballs like Jada Pinkett-Smith are easily ejected from Metal (and hipsters natch), but it might be time to get all Patriot Act and root out enemies within our own populace; could Children of Bodom frontman Alexi Laiho be a proverbial citizen banished among foreign terrorists at Metal's Guantanamo Bay? I'm NOT OVERREACTING; that is Kenny G, people. Look how happy they are, with their matching shirts, all planning to start a band with Marty Friedman and Avril Lavigne. Serenity now.


A friend and I kinda look at it as fact that Clooney is the only peer of Cary Grant. And possibly vice versa. Buttt If those two guys ever need a Michael Anthony, HooM! hereby nominates Charles Laughton. That dude is like Grant and Clooney: all home runs and triples. He just doesn't have the kisser. Laughton is TCM's Star Of The Month in November and thus rokked my shit in a steakish naval adventure the evuhning before lahhhst ha. First off, the plot is genius because its pace mimics that of a British Navy destroyer; I'd been watching for a solid 15 minutes before the um war movie suddenly tried to make me laugh. And with great success my stars. But I began to forget that Laughton was in the damn shit cuz he'd been off screen so long. Then he parachuted in with two grand slam freak-outs. Anyhow before long, the frame is packed with babies and sailors and anti-Japanese epithets. Ahem but before you can protest cough there's a super-awesome explosion. The saga closes with some additional happy-endery; then I finally hear it's called Stand By For Action and that is among the stupidest fucking titles I've ever had my ears raped by.

Stand By For Action? That's like if Oreos were called You Are About To Taste Somethings. That's what fucking Marq Torien says to chicks right before he peels off spandex. Or maybe scarves; I'm having trouble picturing Torien's wardrobe. Hey there we go (above). Don't miss The Bribe on Mon 11.24.



I guess there's a reason that Japanese bands seem freakishly prolific. It was explained to me once that because the touring and promotional cycles are so short thanks to geography, there's time to crank out 65-minute albums every 16 months. But this theory discounts heavy-duty touring machines like Melt-Banana, Boris, Polysics, and increasingly, Dir en grey, whose Uroboros is out today. Honestly, after one listen I had absolutely no idea what was going on with the album. Riffs were randomly stitched together to resemble an audio companion to my sixth grade attempt at a Metal band crossword (a series of L's). 

But hey sometimes you can quickly distinguish an elusive album from a pointless one and Uroboros is the former, and brilliant too. It's easy to imagine singer Kyo interrupting a band meeting from a shadowy corner by extinguishing a cigarette on his palm and saying "This album we are setting out to make must be one. orgasm. after. another." And all the explosions, like "Dozing Green" (above), just make it more frustrating that as usual the guitars aren't heavy enough ugh and Kyo tends to wear out all of his good ideas by repeating them. He seems like the type to enjoy singing all wildly so as to discourage harmonizing (somebody call Bobby McFerrin), a suspicion corroborated by the vocals' conspicuous loudness. Too bad, cuz the scrubs sparkle and Kyo's best when he's organized. And not dancing.