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since 28/02/2001


Mutter - Rammstein 23/12/2002

Mein Affen ist in Der Kirche...

Mutter - Rammstein You may have heard of Rammstein. The heavy German industrial rockers have a good name for themselves outside their native country. With three albums aside from Mutter to their name they are not new kids on the block. So with my limited German knowledge (I can say “Where is my monkey? In the Church / Cooker?”), and an afternoon to spare, I picked up the “Mutter” CD. Combining a classical music / orchestral sound with heavy industrial rock riffage, synthesiser-driven breaks, and choral samples Rammstein provides a viable alternative to the rap-rock scene that currently dominates the “alternative” charts. Most likely you have heard “Du Hast”, included on the Matrix Soundtrack, or one of their latest singles, notably “Sonne” from this album. So what does the album sound like? --------------- --- Mein Herz Brennt; A slow monologue introduction leading to a majestic, orchestral, full bodied assault on the ears. The translation of the title means “My Heart Burns”. The entire song is very full of bass and down-tuned guitars. This has a true German classical music feel to it. A perfect introduction to the album, maybe the band if you’ve never listened before. Links 2-3-4; A pounding song, leading you through tumbling choruses with guitars piled up and distorted. The video for this song showing ants marching in war-like patterns. This is one of the better songs on the album – Showing you what Rammstein do best - Rock Sonne; This was one of the albums ...

Evolution (DVD) 30/06/2001

Grows, Splutters and Dies

Evolution (DVD) ---------- Let us imagine the conversation surrounding the artistic development of the Evolution script and storyline: Businessman: I want to do an film about aliens Script writer 1: Sure, I can do that, we'll just cram it with special effects, that sells Businessman: We also have to cram it with our sponsors name, do you think you can work that in? Script writer 2: Why not, well give it a major starring role in the film, make my paycheque fatter Script writer 1: I like writing comedy too, I'll add a few jokes from this "1000 old jokes" book I've just got Businessman: Right, that's settled then, lets start filming. ---------- A little harsh, but I will explain why.... A meteor crashes in the Arizona desert onto Wayne Green's (William Scott) car. The meteor carries with it lots of single celled organisms. These organisms rapidly evolve and start taking over the local area. A local college science professor, Ira Kane (Duchovny), and his geologist friend, Harry Block (Jones) investigate. They find the evolution astounding, and try and keep control of the project, in order to have their "claim to fame". The military arrive at the scene, and secrets of Kanes past are revealed. Tensions between the college professors and the military spark. The aliens evolve more, everyone tries to stop them. Oh, and there is romance in there somewhere. Yep, that's about it - As far as I can go without describing the entire plot. The screenplay verges on the ridiculous. It seems ...

Whatever and Ever Amen - Ben Folds Five 24/06/2001


Whatever and Ever Amen - Ben Folds Five Ben Folds Five, the recently split trio from North Carolina consist[s/ed] of: Ben Folds - Piano & Vocals Robert Sledge - Bass Darren Jesse - Drums The combination of piano, bass and drums is a strange combination for a successful band, however, as many people say, "rock started on the piano". Fold's vocals on this album are excellent, the piano beautiful, the bass powerful and innovative, the drums sharp. This is possibly Ben Folds Five's most successful album, due to the high popularity of the single "Brick" which topped the US charts. There are several other classic Ben Folds Five tracks on this album including "Song For the Dumped", and the great "Missing the War". --------------- ----- 1. One Angry Dwarf and 200 Solemn Faces A song, perhaps about the band itself, perhaps about Ben - A dwarf, beat up after school, now "telling you what to do" - Perhaps depicting BFF as the dwarf, being laughed at, now on top of the world with a great album.... ---------- 2. Fair A song about love and irony, great bass playing on this track, with an interesting rhythm. "All is fair in love" Mr Folds sings, along-side some well-written, thought provoking lyrics. ---------- 3. Brick Brick was their #1 single in the USA. The song is a beautiful tale of a boy taking his girlfriend to the abortion clinic, the emotions and feelings associated with this. The song is powerful and well written - A classic. ---------- 4. Song For the Dumped This song may as ...

Nokia 3330 23/06/2001

3330 reasons to buy...

Nokia 3330 Well, maybe not 3330 reasons to buy, but I can certainly give you quite a few. I decided I was in need of a new mobile as most of my friends were switching to the Genie Mobile plans, getting free SMS messaging - An expensive way to live if you still pay 10p per Txt. There was a small range of phones to choose from. I went for the Nokia 3330 due to recommendations from my friends, and because I liked the overall appearance and features list. I could list every feature of the phone and comment on it, instead I'll list the features that stand out to me (in no particular order...): --------------- ----- 1. Text Messaging ---------- This is one of the features of the phone that I use most. As with most other Nokia's that I have seen the text messaging is fairly good (especially compared to my old phone). Predictive text makes it faster to write messages, with it guessing most of the words that I use correctly - If not then you can insert words, symbols, numbers and "smilies" (:-P) that don't get fed through the dictionary. The phone can store up to 10 messages on my Genie pre-pay plan, and 20 on the contract phones. The menu options for text messages are nicely laid out, you can see who the text is from before you open it, reply, forward and erase messages. Another nice feature is that you can "copy & paste" numbers from text messages to your address book with the "Use Number" feature. Overall I find text messages useful, and easy to use with the ...

Ben Folds Five - Ben Folds 25/03/2001

Upbeat, piano, pop

Ben Folds Five - Ben Folds Ben Folds Five, the recently split trio from North Carolina. Ben Folds Five consist[ed] of: Ben Folds - Piano & Vocals Robert Sledge - Bass Darren Jesse - Drums All three are talented musicians, playing and singing very well. The combination of piano, bass and drums, with no guitar is rare in a reasonably successful band these days. The type of music produced may not be to everyones taste, however, the album is very listenable - Just try it. The album is essentially happy and upbeat. There are a great range of songs within the album, every track enjoyable. ---------- The tracks on the album are: 1. Jackson Cannery 2. Philosophy 3. Julianne 4. Where's Summer B? 5. Alice Childress 6. Underground 7. Sports and Wine 8. Uncle Walter 9. Best Imitation of Myself 10. Video 11. The Last Polka 12. Boxing ---------- My favorite picks from the album are: 4. Where's Summer B? - A happy, upbeat number you can sing along to. Talking about happy summer times. 6. Underground - THE geek anthem. "I Was Never Cool In School" the song kicks off. This is a stunning, but slightly strange track. If you like this, check out the live version on the "Naked Baby Photos" album. 10. Video - A great track, with a very good chorus. 12. Boxing - A quieter song, beautifully constructed. The piano is really well played. ---------- This album is the most upbeat of their albums, and their tracks work[ed] very well live. I would recommend ...

Just Push Play - Aerosmith 12/03/2001

Just Push Play, then Hit Repeat

Just Push Play - Aerosmith Alright, I'm an Aerosmith fan. They have provided us with great rock albums going on for 30 years now (although they may not remember any of it). So whats new with this Aerosmith album and how does it compare to their other great works such as "Toys in the Attic" and "Pump"? The first thing that stuck me when listening to it is that it sounds modern (well, duh, its new), however, from Aerosmith I was hoping for a rock album - This has a slightly edited "pop" feel to it - Especially on the title track "Just Push Play". I don't like this sort of stuff normally, but it has grown on me (for the short time I've been listening to it). This album is still most definatly got that underlying Aerosmith feeling that runs through all of their albums - There are thankfully a fair amount of guitar riffs and underlying rock rhythms to get into. I feel that any fans who like the older albums such as "Toys in the Attic", "Draw the Line" and "Rocks" may prefer to stick to the old stuff, however fans of records like "Get a Grip" may well like this a lot. There are several radio-friendly tracks on the album - Therefore I expect to hear a lot more from it - Jamie

Microsoft MSN Messenger 12/03/2001

Chat and more

Microsoft MSN Messenger MSN Messanger is simple. This is its main advantage. When you sign up for a Microsoft Hotmail account your ID becomes your "Microsoft Passport" and unlocks an array of services provided by Microsoft and MSN. One of these services is the MSN instant messanger. The program compromises of a list of "buddies" - Your friends with Microsoft Passports and the Messanger program. This buddy list allows you to see when your friends are online and signed in. With your buddy list you can: - Chat in a group of up to 5 buddies - "Talk" in real time with voice communication with a single buddy - Send and recieve files with/from your buddies The other features of the program include the ability to check if you have email in your Hotmail Inbox, and to instantly access it by clicking a link in the program. The same goes for sending an email to someone, you click a link and it loads up your "hotmail compose" screen. The program is simple to use for those who have little internet experience, which is an advantage if you want to get your non-computer-literate friends into chatting online. The main disadvantage is the lack of "groups" of friends which is a feature in many other programs. I have loads of people on my list, some close friends, some for work, it is a little inconvinient that they are all grouped together. All round a worthwhile download. Jamie

General: Oregon 12/03/2001

Coasting along...

General: Oregon In the summer of 1999 I visited the west coast of America, after spending a week in California I went with my family on a cycle tour of the Oregon coastline. We flew into Portland airport, and cycled through the city. Although we didn't spend much time there, as we had to make it to a motel before dark, the city looked very pleasant, nice streets and buildings - A bit of character. We cycled along the main roads, as there were few smaller roads to choose from. Although there was a wide area for cyclists at the side of the road the traffic was a little fast in places. We found an out-of-town motel, reasonable quality and a good price - And ate a quick later dinner at a fast-food place. We cycled down through Oregon to Albany, another nice town, where we stayed with friends. The scenery until that point was pleasant, but not spectacular, valleys and fields. After spending a quick break in Albany we cycled down the Oregon coast - The coast line is fantastic - Beautiful. The rain set in after the second day, but what we could see of the scenery was exellent. In the mornings the coast line was covered in a mysterious mist that really gave the place some atmosphere. We used camping facilities at the coast which were of a good standard, and ate out at local restaurants. Eating out was fairly cheap - It didn't set us back much at all compared to British prices. We cycled up a very quiet road along the "Smith River" - This was possibly the best part of our cycle ...

Ain't Life Grand - Slash 12/03/2001

Life is Grand...and so is this

Ain't Life Grand - Slash Slash returned in 2000 with the latest incarnation of the band known as Slash's Snakepit and the album "Ain't Life Grand". Following from the great "It's Five O'Clock Somewhere" - A side project that Slash undertook whilst unsure of his Guns N' Roses career - "Ain't Life Grand" develops the late 80's rock sound with a modern twist. Slash has completely changed the linup of the Snakepit band. Rather than create a band that solely showcases Slash's incredible talent for playing the guitar the band is an assembly of good musicians - Each member as much a part of the group as Slash. --------------- - The band: --------------- - -------- Slash - Guitar -------- An incredibly talented guitarist, probably one of the most influential rock-musicians of the past decade -------- Rod Jackson - Vocals -------- Rods vocals are sound great on the album, and are outstanding live - They are powerful and make a welcome change from the whine of Axl Rose (not that he is a bad vocalist), that we are so used to hearing with Slash. Rod has been compared to the likes of David Lee Roth (ex. Van Halen) and Brian Johnson (AC/DC). -------- Ryan Roxie/Keri Kelli - Guitars -------- Ryan Roxie is the guitarist that appears on the album, providing a great alternative accompanyment to the lead of Slash. Keri Kelli is the excellent guitarist that has taken Ryans place on the world tour - Ryan leaving for other commitments. -------- Johnny G - Bass -------- Neat ...

Izzy Stradlin & the Ju Ju Hounds - Izzy Stradlin 08/03/2001

Izzy Stradlin' - Classic

Izzy Stradlin & the Ju Ju Hounds - Izzy Stradlin Izzy Stradlin was part of Guns N' Roses, one of the most notorious rock bands of the late eighties and early nineties. Quitting Guns N' Roses maybe wasn't one of the easiest things to do - Who would want to leave one of the most successful groups ever? It did Izzy good though. "Izzy Stradlin and the Ju Ju Hounds" was formed. Their self-titled album is a focus in on the solid rock vibes that Izzy Stradlin brought to Guns, modelling the album on the music of classic bands like the Stones. The result is a pleasing album from a great group. The album is a mix of traditional American rock music, a hint of county-western rock, and slice of reggae at the end of the fast-paced "Pressure Drop". "Bucket O' Trouble" is another quick track - These songs aren't as aggressive as the Guns N' Roses tracks that you may be expecting Izzy to be repeating in his own work - However, they give the album a good hard edge without destroying the overall atmosphere of calm and relaxation. The acoustic "Time Gone By" and the bassy "Shuffle it All" give the album a heartfelt dimension - Which is mirrored through the rest of the album. - Leaving a run of pleasant tracks with a relaxed feel-good rhythm, and the wonderful "Come On Now Inside" to finish the album. Those expecting a Guns N' Roses album may be disappointed - Those who are expecting a good rock album will not be. The guitar solos are not as flashy as the work of Slash, the vocals solid, but not as spectacular as Axl's, the feeling - ...

Lies - Guns & Roses 07/03/2001


Lies - Guns & Roses Guns N’ Roses Lies was released after their legendary “Appetite for Destruction” album. Lies comes in two parts, the first four tracks being from the 1986 EP “Live ?!*@ Like A Suicide”, and the second four being new acoustic-based tracks. The albums kicks off with the tracks “Reckless Life” and “Nice Boys”, with the lyrics “Nice boys don’t play rocks and roll”. These tracks aren’t as heavy as the material from “Appetite for Destruction”, just plain and simple rock. Some ‘live’ crowd sounds have been dubbed onto the recording giving a great atmosphere of being live. Then comes the track “Move to the City” – A different and interesting song, with a great bluesy feel. Track 4 is Aerosmith’s “Mama Kin” which is well covered in the Guns N’ Roses style. The second half of the album is acoustic based. It starts with the beautiful "Patience", showing how well the band can use acoustic guitars. The record then moves on to the joking "Used to Love Her" - You've got to laugh at the lyrics “I used to Love her, but I had to kill her”, a song about getting pissed off with a girlfriend (either you laugh or you cry). Next up is "You're Crazy" - An acoustic version of the track by the same name on "Appetite for Destruction. “You’re Crazy” has a good lyrical base that is enhanced by the raw, gritty and sometimes ... 04/03/2001

Free, easy, simple, spam-magnet. Most of the time hotmail works for me. This free, web-based email service is easy to use. It gives you a Microsoft Passport (username) and a few mb of email storage space. It has the regular features of email programs including folders, message rules and an address book. I use hotmail primarily to communicate with my personal friends: With a hotmail address you can use the MSN Instant Messanger, an online chat tool/buddy list. As all of my friends have this it is easy to see when they are online and chat. The only problem with my hotmail address is the volume of bulk mail that I receive on it, although this is true of most email accounts. Microsoft have provided an "inbox protector" to sort through your bulk mail and remove unwanted bulk mail. This service is faily good, however I have lost some "real" messages into the trash can. As Microsoft expands its range of msn-hotmail services I see it being essential that you have a hotmail passport address. This can be used for things like the "community group sites" and the "MSN calander"... sign up now... Jamie

Slash's Snakepit - Ain't Life Grand Tour 04/03/2001

500 people and Slash's Snakepit

Slash's Snakepit - Ain't Life Grand Tour I went to see Slash's Snakepit on the 5th December 2000 at the Underworld in Camden. The gig was part of the tour for "Ain't Life Grand" their album which was released late 2000. The Underworld is a club under a pub in Camden, London. It has a capacity of about 500, so the show sold out pretty quickly. Although we were near the back of the queue it was faily easy to get right up to the front, the mosh pit only being a few people deep at such a small venue. After an hour or so the band came out onto the stage to a great cheer. Slash's Snakepit played most of their songs from the new album "Ain't Life Grand", leaving out the slower songs such as "The Truth" and "Back to the Moment". The crowd really soaked up the atmosphere, loving every second of it, even when Slash managed to blow up and amp during "Shine" - Which allowed the band the oppertunity to talk to the crowd. To finish off they played "It's So Easy" and "Mr Brownstone" from the Guns N' Roses album "Appetite for Destruction". As an encore they played "Beggars and Hangers On" from the first Snakepit album "It's Five O'Clock Somewhere", and "Speed Parade". The feeling was great, it was a really a fantastic sound. Unfortunaly Slash didn't make an appearance to sign autographs after the gig (as he normally does), but that didn't affect one of the best nights out I've had in a long time... Jamie

It's Five O'Clock Somewhere - Slash 04/03/2001

Quality, hard rocking tracks

It's Five O'Clock Somewhere - Slash I bought "It's Five O'Clock Somewhere" after buying the Guns N' Roses album "Appetite for Destruction". I loved it. The album has been desribed as the album that Guns N' Roses never got around to making. I would agree, after GnR Slash needed to occupy himself and the result was "Its Five O'Clock..." The album has a mix of hard-edged rock guitar tracks, with guitar solos to make your fingers hurt just thinking about them. My favorites on the album have to be "Beggars and Hangers On", with a great and distinctive into, and the run of songs "Monkey Chow", "Soma City Ward" and "Jizz Da Pit". Although all of the tracks are good to listen to. If you can then listen to some sample tracks online, you will probably like what you hear. It is really great to hear this album if you are a Guns N Roses fans, it shows that Slash is truly one of the best guitarists the world has seen. Jamie

Free the West Memphis 3 - Various Artists 28/02/2001

Slash's Snakepit

Free the West Memphis 3 - Various Artists Slash's Snakepit - After Guns N' Roses Slash needed somewhere to exercise his musical talent, so after doing live shows he came up with Slash's Snakepit to make an album. "Its Five O'Clock Somewhere" was produced, a great selection of hard and fast rock tracks, with, as expected, great guitar. Into 2000 and a new Snakepit lineup was created. "Ain't Life Grand" was released, and the Snakepit went on tour. Ain't Life Grand was possibly one of the best rock albums of 2000, combining Slash's great guitar with an excellent band, each member highly talented. Touring a new guitarist came in: Keri Kelli, Keri made a great addition to the band (to replace Ryan Roxie), live they put on a great show, and have been touring/supporting AC/DC. Slash, as always is a pleasure to watch, and a Snakepit show is well worth going to. If you're looking for great Rock N' Roll, some decent guitar, and good music then listen to the Snakepit.
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