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Friday, March 12, 2010

Art Is Everywhere

70 Million by Hold Your Horses ! from L'Ogre on Vimeo.



Besides the video being spectacular, Hold Your Horses is a pretty solid band. The vocals remind me of Modest Mouse, with an additional female vocalist on some songs.

Art history (easily my worst subject in college) is chasing me. Not only does this video remind me of my terrifying experience, but Assassin's Creed II is full of famous works as well/. I caught myself analyzing a churches architecture last night. Not to mention I've collected about a dozen famous paints for my gallery.

-Josh

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Friday, February 19, 2010

Furry Animals

No one is holding my accountable for my resolutions... and i am doing a crappy job by myself keeping up with them. I'm assuming it's because no one reads my blog anymore. Totally understandable.

Anyhow, in honor of Facial Hair February, I give you this amazing site:


Personally, my beard is starting to get long and itchy, and i can't wait to shave it down. But i still love it.

-Bearded Dusel

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Friday, January 1, 2010

Resolute

My 2009 Resolutions are:

- The obligatory "lose 30 lbs" by next Christmas vacation
- Explore new places in KC (Jess and i are making a list)
- Start a New Blog and/or update this one more often.
- Be in a house by April (or at least get the Tax credit)
- Make more decisions, quicker
- Get my car registration figured out (preferably before Friday)

Hold me accountable!
-Josh

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Thursday, December 31, 2009

Another Year...

Top Film of 2009

(500) Days of Summer
The story of a hopeless romantic, who loves crybaby music, that works for a greeting card company gets his heart broken but eventually figures out this true path. Sounds like the story of my life right? Nope, just Tom Hansen, played by Joseph Gordon-Levitt in easily my favorite movie of the year. Everything about this movie spoke to me, and had an unfair advantage over the rest. Even after watching it, I said "that's definitely my favorite movie this year" (or something similar). Besides the fact that it's the story of my life, it also stars the beautiful Zooey Deschanel, has an amazing soundtrack, and a great sense of humor about it. Marc Webb, for your first movie effort, this was a home run for me. Keep up the good work.

Top Album of 2009

The Dangerous Summer - Reach for the Sun
The first time I heard the single off of this ablum, it was acoustic, and it filled me with boyish glee. And ever since that point, I've been in love. I can't say this band is don't anything exceptionally "original" or "groundbreaking", but that's exactly what i liked about them. The CD came around about the same time i was just looking to hear some good ol' fashion pop-punk. And there they were. No keyboards, no forced falsetto, no accents. I had to stick with my gut on this pick, because in other peoples eyes this band might not be so special. But to me, they have a place at the top of my list.

Thanks.

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I Miss You More Than Most

Top Albums of 2009
(2nd thru 10th)

Since last year, not much has changed, unfortunately for me. The 80's comeback has really put a damper on music for me. As we pass into 2010, somehow people thing we need all of our music to be made with computers. I'm really fucking sick of the "BEEP-BOOP" music. Reviewers are eating it up though. Bands are trading in their guitars for keyboards and iMacs and everyone seems to be OK with it. I can buy into some of it, but as you will find in my "best of" i have chosen bands that most people haven't put on their own lists. On that note, let me tell you what album i thought sucked:

Most Overrated Album: Animal Collective - Merriweather Post Pavilion

I'm sick of everyone telling me how great this CD is. It's number one on all the popular lists this year. Is there a hidden message in the tracks? Because all I hear is bad lyrics and looping.

With that said, I know the world is going to hate this list (2nd thru 10th):

2nd
Japandroids - Post-Nothing

These guys remind me of high school – driving around in the back of my buddy Cole's big white van (without any seats), blaring Fugazi through blown out speakers. And as unattractive as that may seem to some, it was likely most fun i will ever have. Japandroids has done all the work for you though. The album sounds like it was recorded by placing a mic in front of a bad Fender amp in someones basement. And then recorded the vocals like it was a bad 80's mix tape (you know the kind where you put the recorder up the radio?). None of this probably sounds appealing to you either, but it's so me... It's the most pure music I have heard in a while.

3rd
Tegan & Sara - Sainthood

I picked up this album really recently and rocked my world. I don't know, I kinda had low expectations going into it, but Tegan & Sara don't seem to disappoint. They have come a long way since their early days, but it's not through conformity, It's through refining their sound. They were one of the first indie bands that started to put keyboards as a focal instrument in their songs, but since then I think it really works. After going back and listening to a couple tracks from "The Con", it felt boring. This album was much more satisfying, driving, and more complete sounding.

4. Dethklok - Dethalbum II
(In some way better than their last effort, in some ways not)
5. Thrice - Beggers (Their best since "The Artist and the Ambulance", i think.)
6. Anamanaguchi - Dawn Metropolis (Nintendo-core, pure "beep-boop" music, but that's what makes it work.)
7. Yeah Yeah Yeahs - It's Blitz! (Back on the scene, combining their old music with disco. Brilliant.)
8. Blakroc - Blakroc (Most entertaining rap i have heard in a long time)
9. Phoenix - Wolfgang Amadeus Phoenix (I found their past efforts to be more rewarding, personally, but this is what pure fun sound like)
10. Brand New - Daisy (After going back and giving it one last listen, it squeaked it's way into the top 10. Really grew on me.)

Honorable Mentions:
Baroness - Blue Album
Say Anything - Say Anything
The Pains of Being Pure at Heart - The Pains of Being Pure at Heart
Passion Pit - Manners


Other Mentionable Albums (in no particular order):
Mastodon - Crack the Skye
Band of Skulls - Baby Darling Doll Face Honey
the Decemberists - The Hazards of Love
New Found Glory - Not Without a Fight
Two Tongues - Two Tongues
The Swell Season - Strict Joy
Dashboard Confessional - Alter the Ending (Deluxe Edition)

Biggest Disappointment: Taking Back Sunday - New Again (what happened to you TBS?)

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Don't Speak His Name


Top Video Games of 2009:


1st - Batman Arkham Asylum | XBox 360
For the first time ever, I was able to know what it felt like to be Batman. It was beautifully crafted, a great story line, great graphics and gameplay. Maybe the best part was Kevin Conroy and Mark Hamill (the original voices for Batman the Animated Series) were signed to reprise there rolls.









2nd - Brutal Legend | XBox 360
Jack Black does what he does best: Rocks hard, and kicks ass. Despite the fact that Tim Schafer had to cram every damn kind of game into one, he had a great story that involved one of my favorite things (other than zombies) METAL! Guest stars from Ozzy to Lemmy. Schafer has yet to disappoint me. Keep it that way.

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Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Drowning The Inspired Generation


Top 10 Films of 2009 (2nd-10th)


As far as Oscar candidates go, I don't really feel I have seen a lot of those films this year. But I have seen a ton of entertaining movies. I pretty much went buckwild on the "advanced screening passes" since last December, and most were big budget action flicks. So, a new category this year: all of the movies I missed that had potential of upsetting the order of my top 10 are my "Game Changers":

Game Changers (had I seen them):
Up in the Air
The Hurt Locker
Fantastic Mr. Fox
Moon
The Road
Sherlock Holmes

Despite this, out of the movies I DID see this year, here is my list of favorites (from 2nd to 10th). The order changed dozens of times since I picked out my top 10 favorites, but i think this is pretty close to a correct order. Enjoy.


2nd
Zombieland

Ingredients for my favorite movies: Zombies, action, comedy, art. Done. This movies got it. When I first heard about the movie, the fact it was called Zombieland, intrigued me. And i got my expectation really high when i started seeing the viral videos online. They were actually really funny. So, when i got to the movie, i was afraid all of my high hopes would be dashed. But then, what really hooked me when I first started watching the movie, was the AfterEffects lettering in the scenes. It reminds you that "this is a movie", just have fun. The movie doesn't take itself to seriously and it kinda makes a big joke out of the zombie movie genre (yes, it's a whole genre to me). If this is the direction that zombie movies take in the future, i will be a happy man.
It's biggest flaw was the some of the one liners, flopped. "Nut up or shut up" is fucking stupid. No one likes it. Jesse Eisenberg, the new Michael Cera, was perfect, so was Woody, Emma Stone (hottie) and the girl from Little Miss Sunshine. Not to mention it was a directorial debut for Ruben Fleischer, so nice job. I can't wait for the sequel.


3rd
Inglourious Basterds

Quentin Tarantino has a certain type of movie... and the way I see it is, if you don't like that formula, you are going to hate everything he does. He gets a seriously bad wrap because his films are poorly advertised as action movies. Yes, you will get to see Nazi's murdered in droves, but this movie is much more than that. The characters are dynamic and lovable, even if they are the most despicable type of person. To achieve this, you have to have a TON of dialog. In this 2 and a half hour epic, you maybe have 45 minutes of pure action. There are some seriously intense scenes in this movie, opening up with one of the most intense. The humor is pitch black and the action is bloody. In the end, you get exactly what you want. Definitely not a movie for everyone... but it was a movie for me.


4th
Star Trek

When I think back to Middle School, I really didn't have many friends. One reason was because I was fat... The other, was because I was a nerd. And being a nerd meant picking between Star Wars and Star Trek. I picked Star Wars. This isn't to say i had no interest in it. I watched DS-9 and Voyager. But i never watched the original series, or Next Generation (or Enterprise) as did most Trekkies. But when I heard JJ Abrams (my hero) was going to do a Star Trek reboot, I was pretty faithful that he was going to make something I liked. And I wasn't disappointed. Most people were calling it the "Iron Man" of this summer: a nerdy, action flick, that actually had some wide appeal. It was a great movie all around to tell the truth. This may have something to do with the fact that JJ Ambrams admits to getting most of his inspiration for the movie from Star Wars. Who am I to say.


5th
The Brothers Bloom

I saw this movie really late in the year, and it came out really early. I hope it doesn't get lost in the Oscar race because it's spectacular. Mark Ruffalo and Adrian Brody are honestly some of the most talented actors in Hollywood right now. And it shows through on this movie. I am a sucker for a good con, so the story was tops. It kept me guessing the entire movie, even though I was sure I knew what was going on. This film made it to the top of my list solely based on the fact that it was well rounded. It has action, a very cute love story, and quirky comedy.



6th
The Hangover
This was a really hard cut from my top 5. I really don't have to tell you why i picked this movie though, because everyone I talk to loves this movie. Great original plot, funny as sin, and great performances all around.
7th: Up If it wasn't for the shear ridiculousness of the story it would have been higher.
8th: Where the Wild Things Are I think there is an indie kid clause staying that i must like this movie, but I didn't love it.
9th: District 9 FOOCKIN PRAWNS! Simply wasn't as good as 8 others (hard to knock down).
10th: Drag Me to Hell What can i say, I love Sam Rammi and campy horror.

Honorable Mentions:
Ninja Assassin
Avatar
Adventureland
Ponyo
I Love You, Man
Coraline

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