Animated Shorts #4

coffeeCoffee, the elixir of life. I’m your typical recovering alcoholic, smoke like I may never be able to smoke again and drink coffee like I did my liquor, day and night, gallons at a time.  Not snooty about my coffee, but I can’t stand the cheapest stuff that tastes like it was swept off the floor.  That’s what they brew at work, tight budget and all, I choked it down for years, gotta have that java fix, even though it’s straight from hell.  Our secretary (from the fair land of Costa Rica, where coffee is cherished), these days brews a “secret” pot of the good stuff that a few of us are blessed to thankfully enjoy.

breathalizerFrom another email sent by my Gramps, entitled “Breathalyzer (the written test)”. I’m not sure if my Grandpa knows that I grew up to be the raging-est of alcoholics or that I managed to clean myself up almost 9 years ago.  Also not sure if there would be disappointed and then relief, probably best to just leave that alone.  One of a few things left that I have a hard time forgiving myself for, is my DUI, 13 years ago.  Must have drove drunk 1000 times, but what made this so “special” was there was an accident and my son was sitting next to me in his car seat.  Not my proudest moment by a long shot, in fact, along with 3 or 4 other events, something that should damn me to hell.   So there is inherent humor in the activities of a stumbling bumbling slurring drunk, but there’s some thing tragic there too.

Figured I needed to insert some music in this non-musical post…Epic female fronted in Spanish EBM/Industrial (did I mention it was epic?) by way of my electronic music prophet Rafael Prayers
Hocico – Without a God

Super high quality, sci-fi gore and brutality…

Short but “sweet”…
“The Sad Tale of Bad Breath Joe”

this one’s a trip, good action and I love claymation…
“Ward 13”

The Day My Kid Went Punk

tDMKWPThe 80’s were an interesting era, so much plastic, so much aerosol, you could redesign yourself with a can of hairspray.  This ABC Afterschool Special aired the year I graduated from high school, unbeknownst to me (I didn’t watch too much TV at the time), I only just discovered it.  Didn’t watch the whole thing, kinda skipped through, but apparently this young lads romp into punk rock was based on attention seeking, his family just wasn’t making him feel special.  At this point in my life I pretty much completely subscribed to the Crass-ism that punk was dead.  Looking back and I guess it’s true today, the music we listen to plays such a big role in our cultural identity.  Societies kneejerk reaction is always on the outside looking and in this case it’s comical and pathetic…
Afterschool Special

FEAR – On that show…

FearThis one keeps appearing and disappearing on utoob so thought I would put it here for permanence and posterity. The immortal John Belushi invited them to come on but it was too much for network TV and got cut short. Here’s the wiki blurb on it…
“Spheeris’ documentary brought the band to the attention of John Belushi, who lobbied successfully to get the band a spot as a musical guest on the 1981 Halloween episode of his former show Saturday Night Live. Belushi had originally offered Fear the soundtrack for his major motion picture Neighbors. The film’s producers eventually forced Fear off the project, and Belushi got them the infamous SNL gig as compensation. The band’s appearance included a group of moshers, among them Belushi, Ian MacKaye of Minor Threat (and later Fugazi), Tesco Vee of The Meatmen, Harley Flanagan and John Joseph of the Cro-Mags, and John Brannon of Negative Approach. The show’s director originally wanted to prevent the dancers from participating, so Belushi offered to be in the episode if the dancers were allowed to stay.[2] The end result was the shortening of Fear’s appearance on TV. They started their second performance by saying, “It’s great to be in New Jersey”, drawing boos from SNL’s New York live audience. Fear played “I Don’t Care About You”, “Beef Bologna”, “New York’s Alright If You Like Saxophones”, and started to play “Let’s Have a War” when the telecast faded into commercial. The slamdancers left ripe pumpkin remains on the set. After their SNL appearance, which resulted in $20,000 in damage, some clubs chose not to hire the band. A New York Post article later reported the figure to be $500,000. This is believed to have originated from Ving, who told the Post that “…we caused $500,000 worth of damage, a cool half a million dollars worth of damage, ‘cause we’re professionals, and I counted the damage myself.”

EDIT: Deleted the vid for fear of the piracy police…

Oblio – Square Pegs EP

OblioI almost didn’t do this review, not because I don’t like the band (I don’t see any point in telling bands they suck), because there is something likeable about them, but my old hardcore judgemental self tells me I shouldn’t. In my eyes, this is a pretty tame band, there’s is nothing extreme about them and usually I go for the sound that has some kind of unique edge to it. That’s not to say that this band isn’t unique, I can’t think of a band they are imitating, they are quite simply, Oblio. If you had to lump them somewhere it would probably be in a pop-rock type of category. Are they part of the amorphous mass that is “alternative rock”? The reality that I had to come to accept is that this duo write extremely catchy, unwaveringly melodic, lyrically sophisticated tunes and they groove well together. I can’t call myself a music lover and not admit that this is well done stuff from a pair of talented dudes, maybe it’s just not MY stuff. They make me feel confused, out of my element and yet invited to participate and enjoy. I’m out of the popular music loop, but I can’t believe I haven’t heard of these guys at least in passing somewhere. Even though I wouldn’t be buying, there is definitely a huge market for this kind of sound and I could easily see them making a decent living at their craft, deservedly so. And what the hell they’re from my hometown, if you live in LA and your girlfriend digs U2, Sting or REM (they could easily open for those bands or their modern equivalents), go see them play, she will thank you. Here’s what I got from their bio page…
“Oblio is an alternative rock duo from Los Angeles. The band’s two songwriters – Free Hallas and Blake Russell – draw their sound from a wide range of alt. rock influences, including Weezer, The Replacements, Brand New, Elliott Smith, and Nirvana. The two bandmates are also cousins, who’ve collaborated on musical projects for years. Oblio frequents many LA venues, including the Whiskey A GoGo, and is gaining featured slots on indie-rock radio programs. Oblio’s debut release “Square Peg” is a collection of songs entirely written, recorded, produced, mixed, and mastered by the duo. The Square Peg EP is now available as a free download on their bandcamp page. The EP has also been made available on major digital music vendors including iTunes, Amazon, and Spotify.”
I guess, based on that information, you gotta also give them a boat load of credit for being utterly and completely DIY (Blake is the one who hit me up for a listen/review, not some management/PR company), that is a no bullshit achievement and highly thrifty, I might add. The cousins are well represented on the web, with their own website aptly called Oblio, Soundcloud, Bandcamp (where you can buy hardcopies/downloads of their EP), Facebook, Twitter, Youtube and Reverbnation. This here tune was a pretty good example of their writing skills….
Mr. 50 Questions
…and I forget just why I had complained in the first place.
…and how can I still have an ego, you know I only play the bass.
The medal on my chest says “best at trying hard”…But I hardly tried.
…and how can one girl be so beautiful she makes a man a boy?
…and I regret not playing nicer with her heart like a child’s toy.
The comedy routine’s called “love will find away”…and I laughed so hard!
How can one man have so many friends?
I have so many questions.
How can one band fit so many trends?
I have so many questions.
…and how can body parts and chemicals control the mighty man?
…or how they fuel false emotions, I will never understand.
The sign outside says “we do happy endings”, so why did I cry?
How can one man have so many friends? …I have so many questions!
How can one band fit so many trends? …I have so many questions!
How can one world have so many ends? …I have so many questions!
How can one God have so many plans? …I have so many questions!
Surprise! Surprise… I have no other plans.
I have no other hands to hold, it’s why I can’t let go.
There’s no good disguise for weary eyes,
And mine are always closed.
How can one man have so many friends? …I have so many questions!
How can one band fit so many trends? …I have so many questions!
How can one world have so many ends? …I have so many questions!
How can one God have so many plans? …I have so many questions!
So many questions for you