the eclectic sonic wallpaper of my life
homepreviously heardaudio gear

2009 play list
Nine Inch Nails, Beside You in Time (DVD)
Dunno 'bout the eye-liner, Trenty. An ex-girlfriend got me into NIN. Their first couple of albums still make the walls Toxic Towers at vibrate, but later ones are less vital beyond some interesting rhythms. This 2006 concert (16:9 and DTS) supports With Teeth. Even though I was bored during their duller songs, the concert in total captures much of the faux angst from their music and is worth buying cheap to fill that live gig hole in your NIN collection. There's the obligatory misuse of stage equipment, and the DVD extras include David Fincher's brilliant clip for 'Only'. Grab the Absinthe and turn this fucker up loud for maximum enjoyment.

indie rock
Cannibal Corpse, Centuries of Torment (DVD)
Here's a band that I like more in concept than for its music – Jim Beam helps for extended listening sessions. But even casual fans could only relish Centuries of Torment, a video retrospective from Metal Blade featuring a three-hour documentary about the band's history, together with video clips, live concert footage, and other detritus. All up there's seven hour's of CC footage. Predictably it's in fucken 4:3 ratio, apart from one recent live gig shot in 16:9. Curious trivia: comic Jim Carey is a huge death metal nut, hence the band's appearance in Ace Venture: Pet Detective.

death metal
Arch Enemy, Live Apocalypse (DVD)
Good stuff. This earlier two-disc set contains two live concerts on disc one (dated 2004 and 2005) and special features material on disc two. The sounds (5.1 DTS) and images (anamorphic 16:9) are excellent. As for the music, it's gutsy orthodox thrash metal with Angela Gassow on screaming vocal duties. There's also a newer concert DVD available, filmed in Japan if memory serves.

Slipknot, Volume III: The Subliminal Verses
It's just not workin' for me. This band is Limp Bizkit with less focus and a sludgier production sound, together with a more extreme image; I do love their berserk video clips. But Volume III: The Subliminal Verses is boring to listen to, beyond some admittedly exciting tracks and awesome drumming. A case of style over substance? The kids seem to love the band, though.

Lamb of God, Wrath
Oh dear. This album of something of a misstep by these bearded American metal godz after the triumph of Sacrament. Terrorizer magazine gave it 6/10. With its blast beats and various hooks, I rate it higher than those drongos, but Wrath has very little of the compelling (and less technical) nature of Sacrament. The lyrics are also dull.

Psycroptic, Symbols of Failure
An earlier album from this Tasmanian death metal quartet. It's busier than Ob(servant), with similar abrupt timing changes to Scepters of the Ancients (2003), which has lost favour with me over time. Speed and technical ability doesn't automatically equate to good songs.

death metal
Harlan Ellison, On the Road with Ellison: Volumes 1-3
Since Ellison does not tour Australia doing lectures, one has to settle for recordings. This trio from Deep Shag Records contains eloquently blistering discourses from 1981-1983 and 1991-1993.

spoken word
reviews / articles

Tupac Shakur, Thug Angel (DVD)

Ministry, Tapes of Wrath (DVD)

Ministry, Sphictour (DVD)

Madonna, Live Down Under (DVD)

Madonna, Ciao Italia (DVD)

Korn, R U Ready? (DVD)

The Damned, Final Damnation (DVD)

The Cranberries, Live In Paris (DVD)

Alice in Chains, Unplugged (DVD)

Slayer, War on the Warfield (DVD)

Evanesence, Fallen

Splattersonic, Death Metal 101

liner notes

All albums I listen to are original purchases. I don't download songs, or rip and burn tracks from CDs that belong to someone else. I understand why people copy stuff for free. They can do what they want. And trust me, I have no sympathy for the major record labels and chainstore retailers that have been robbing both consumers and artists for decades. Fuck them all.

But still...I choose to go against the grain and buy music. I like carrying the stuff home from the shop, carefully removing the price tag and censorship warnings, and slipping the shiny, newly minted 12cm disc into the CD player. It's a ritual – almost sensual. And then there's respecting the creative talents.

Until a better system is available, I'll keep buying music from distribution outlets. It's not that expensive really, especially if you shop around, or visit secondhand dealers.

However, be warned: if your album is shit, a scam, full of filler songs, a lazy excuse for art, I will drop a bomb on your pathetic lack of craft in the strongest possible terms. The citizens of Hiroshima and Nagasaki had it easy.