Friday, July 29, 2011

Guitar Hero Lives Again?

Guitar Hero: Warriors of Rock Super Bundle
In a recent interview with Forbes Magazine, Activision chief Bobby Kotick dropped a not-so-subtle hint that a reboot is in the works for the defunct Guitar Hero franchise.

After a triumphant run as the most popular video game franchise in history, Guitar Hero sales dried up after saturating the market with what many people considered to be too many games in one year, and Activision killed the entire product line. The Forbes article indicates that there may be hopes for all of us that think it's fun to play the high-tech equivalent of air guitar.

Friday, July 8, 2011

5 Songs for Casey Anthony

Everyone in the U.S. has heard about the Casey Anthony trial. Most people are very unhappy with the verdict. Whatever you believe really happened, you have to admit that the drama and outright lies surround the case are astounding. It is far weirder than an episode of CSI.

What disturbs you the most about it? Is it the fact that a young child was killed? Is it the fact that the mother was out partying like she was auditioning to be on "Jersey Shore" while her daughter lay dead? Was it the web of lies and fabrications about a non-existent nanny, and a fictional job at Universal Studios? Was it the wild abuse accusations aimed at the grandparents? Or was it the fact that there are more than a few songs out there that seem like they should be Casey Anthony's personal theme music?

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

New EP from Even the Slept

Local Philadephia Prog Rock band Even the Slept released their new EP "Sinks the Ocean" in digital format this week. The band has a classic Prog Rock sound with a few new twists, and are more than worth the effort to check out their music.

Even The Slept's new EP combines the complexity and virtuosity of classic progressive rock with a jazz/blues rhythmic sensibility that sets them apart. The song "One Against Too Many" is a perfect example - combining guitar sounds that brings to mind Steve Howe's sound on Yes's classic "Relayer" with a jazz/funk inspired beat topped off with bluesy vocals.

Find out more about the band, and their upcoming appearances, on their facebook page. If your travels take your through the Philadelphia area, do yourself a favor and check them out. They will be celebrating their album release this Friday- find out the details here.

Saturday, July 2, 2011

4th of July - Soundgarden (1994)

Grunge is a very hard to define sub-genre- simply because it encompassed a wide range of styles. Nirvana had a clear punk/hardcore influence, Pearl Jam a strong classic rock influence- almost complete opposites. Soundgarden, one of the other major names in the Grunge scene, had a sound that was strongly influenced by heavy metal - particularly the doom/sludge sub-genres and a healthy dose of psychedelic rock. So, just considering three of the biggest Grunge bands, we have three wildly varying styles of music under one banner.

The key to Grunge, I think, is found in the attitude and the lyrical content rather than in the  sound and style of the music itself. Grunge, I think, distinguishes itself by having the point of view of disillusioned youth. Topics such as depression, broken families, frustration with authority, and youthful angst are the hallmark and the unifying factor. Soundgarden clearly demonstrates this idea with the song "4th of July" from their 1994 album "Superunknown."