Archive for May, 2013

More blog later, but for now…

May 16, 2013

…in memory of Ronnie James Dio, July 10, 1942 — May 16, 2010…

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As usual, he doesn’t see the connection.

May 14, 2013

Who? Why, Leonard Pitts, that is:

“They’re trying to take our guns away!” Except that it is now theoretically possible for a mental patient to manufacture his own gun in the comfort of his aluminum foil-lined basement. That’s a sobering development with far-reaching implications barely considered, much less addressed, by lawmakers though this technology has existed for over a decade….

It’s a pity some of the energy that has gone into fighting imaginary tyranny did not go into pondering this real and eminently predictable threat.

Well, this sort of thing is what happens when you not only focus all your efforts on taking guns away from the people who didn’t do anything but also leave the dangerous people out there free to predate at will. As for Pitts’ theoretical mental patient…what would said mental patient be doing with access to such things anyway? If he’s a mental patient he’s likely walled off from society anyway, which should mean he doesn’t have access to things like a 3D printer.

There’s always the chance, of course, that Pitts means to foster a dialogue about keeping mentally ill individuals away from guns and the like. But somehow I doubt that, because he’s been blaming guns and the “easy availability” thereof for a good long time, and I doubt he’s going to stop now — or anytime soon, for that matter.

Not a bad list at all.

May 12, 2013

Howie Abrams and Sacha Jenkins’ top-10 vocalists in the history of metal:

1. Ronnie James Dio (Black Sabbath, Dio)
2. Rob Halford (Judas Priest)
3. Bruce Dickinson (Iron Maiden)
4. Eric Adams (Manowar)
5. Geoff Tate (Queensrÿche)
6. King Diamond (Mercyful Fate, King Diamond)
7. Tom Araya (Slayer)
8. John Bush (Armored Saint/Anthrax)
9. James Hetfield (Metallica)
10. Max Cavalera (Sepultura, Soulfly)

I thought it was pretty well-rounded, anyway. The only quibble I have is the inclusion of Tom Araya. Confession time, maybe: Back when I was dipping my toes into the metal pool, I bought Slayer’s Reign in Blood. I had heard a lot of good things about it and was curious to see how it sounded. Suffice it to say I was not really impressed by it, and Tom Araya’s vocal style was pretty much the beginning and end of the reason for that. It had pretty awesome guitars and all (RIP Jeff Hanneman), but Araya’s…how to put this….half-chant-half-yell just never did anything for me. I would probably have replaced him with Dave Mustaine or Lemmy Kilmister if it had been my list to make. I would guess both of them rank in the top 20…at least I would hope they do, at any rate.

And, yeah, despite his recent crowning as the Eternal Supreme Douchebag of the Metal Universe, Geoff Tate deserves his place on this list. Dude can’t hold a note to save his life anymore, but he was damn near untouchable back in the day. While I am 100 percent behind Queensryche with Todd La Torre — and while I do think Eddie Jackson, Michael Wilton, and Scott Rockenfield are master musicians in their own right — it was Geoff Tate’s vocals that drew me to the band’s music as much as the musical arrangements themselves.

I was quite amused at some of the comments about who should have been included. One commenter suggested the inclusion of Aaron Lewis because of his covers of songs from metal bands like Stone Temple Pilots and Shinedown. Yes, really. I do like both of those bands, but I certainly never thought of them as metal. Another suggestion was Paul Rodgers — and while I think Paul Rodgers is great, the closest he’s ever gotten to metal is Paul Kossoff’s 1957/’63 Fender Stratocaster, which is now played by Iron Maiden guitarist Dave Murray.

I do wonder, though, how the list would look if they just included more current bands like Kamelot or Symphony X, or perhaps just took into account certain bands’ non-original lead singers…

This is such a great observation.

May 11, 2013

From a commenter at Saving Country Music, on the latest from Blake Shelton:

What really makes me mad though, is how many classic country names Blake drops on this album…the fact that he is talking about all these people that supposedly nobody listens to just makes me hate him even more.

I don’t hate Blake Shelton as a person, but I am — to say the least — not a fan of his attitude toward old country music and his opinions of the genre’s evolution. I said my piece on that here.

But this…this really is a whole new level of hypocrisy. Name-dropping Hank Jr. and covering Conway Twitty and George Jones, among others, but hey, I thought nobody listened to or bought that tired old shit anymore. Apparently the new, better way of respecting the people who came before you is to name-drop them in shitty wannabe rap songs (see also: “Dirt Road Anthem”) as opposed to incorporating their sounds into your own music.

But hey, on the bright side, George Strait’s new album hits the stores on Tuesday.We’re pretty much guaranteed not to have any shitty wannabe rap on it.

It doesn’t have to be like that.

May 9, 2013

Twisted Sister guitarist Jay Jay French, on playing new music:

People always say, “Why don’t you do new material?” If you play new material, that means you’re taking some standard out. More people are going to be upset over the removal of a standard than will be made happy by a new song.

Well, such might be true for some bands, but it doesn’t necessarily have to be true for all of them, even Twisted Sister. I seriously wonder how many Twisted Sister fans would be ticked off if “We’re Not Gonna Take It” was taken out in favor of a new song. If you’re making good new music, why not play it? I suppose a lot of acts, Twisted Sister included, are happy being nostalgia acts.

And that’s all fine and good, but I don’t see what’d be so wrong about swapping out some of those overplayed songs for new stuff if the new stuff is good. And the last new song I heard from Dee and the guys was actually really good. He’s still sounding great, and the rest of the band still has it too. Going back to one of my favorite examples, I doubt you’d see many real Queensryche fans who’d be mad if they swapped out “Silent Lucidity” and/or “Jet City Woman” for a couple of the songs from their forthcoming self-titled album. (For the record, I’ve heard from sources I trust at The Breakdown Room and elsewhere that said album is really good, perhaps the best thing they’ve done since at least 1994’s Promised Land.)

And the same goes for Accept. Of course, Mark Tornillo and the guys do play “Balls to the Wall,” “Fast as a Shark,” “Princess of the Dawn,” and “Restless and Wild” right along with “Teutonic Terror” and “Stalingrad.” But I haven’t heard of anyone being unhappy with that.

Of course, the above-mentioned bands are both special cases as they’re both forging on without their iconic original lead singers. But you can still insert pretty much any classic metal band with its original frontman that’s still making new music — Metallica, Megadeth, Anthrax, and the list goes on. (From what I understand, Anthrax’s Worship Music is one of the best things they’ve done in years as well. Same is true of Megadeth’s last couple of albums and Metallica’s Death Magnetic.)

So yeah, there might be a few bands that are comfortable with being a nostalgia act, but I don’t see why they all have to be. Some of ’em are making their best music in years, and the genre would be a lot poorer without it.

Oh noes! Can’t have that!

May 8, 2013

Man, this is some weapons-grade PSH right here:

What kind of message are you trying to convey with a photo of a 7-year-old girl inspecting a Sig Sauer pistol on the front page of Saturday’s newspaper (NRA Convention, PageA1)?

It would seem that you are encouraging children to consider purchasing a gun when they are of age.

The admission of children to the NRA Convention is ludicrous.

Really? Somehow I doubt the leftists at the Houston Chronicle would encourage anyone to buy a gun at any age. And what’s so wrong with kids being allowed into the NRA convention? American gun culture is and always has been a family thing, and I don’t see why this should change as Americans buy guns more for self-defense. I don’t understand why guns have to be akin to pornography as this letter-writer seems to be insinuating they are.

But on second thought, if you keep the progressives’ goals in mind, it does make perfect sense. They don’t only want to get rid of guns. They want to destroy that aforementioned gun culture. And what better way to do that than shutting it off from the children in addition to indoctrinating them against guns in school?

At any rate, I am reminded of Kevin’s Quote of the Day from the other day, from the inimitable Geek With A .45:

“We reject the premise that gun clubs should be treated as brothel hallways, where each man points his face to the floor in shame, lest he recognize, or be recognized. We reject the premise that arms are the sole purview of the state. We reject the premise that the State is somehow endowed of inherently superior stuff, and that all are to forever to accept their station in life and hold ourselves subordinate to it. And this… is all the evidence they will ever need of our depravity and in the eyes of some, outright evil. It is all the evidence they will ever need that we are an inherent hazard to society, and therefore our suppression, marginalization and elimination is a well justified social good.

“Well, as they say, bad luck with all of that. I can wish them only misery and failure.”

So just how far from one to the other?

May 7, 2013

A line from Heinrich Heine’s Almansor goes, in part, “where they burn books, they will ultimately burn people also.” It came to mind when I saw this:

 San Jose State University Meteorology decides burning books they don’t agree with is better than reading them

At the link was a picture of two SJSU professors burning a book that was skeptical of global warming. And it made me wonder: How far is it to burning books that are skeptical of global warming, to burning people who are skeptical of global warming? It’s not as if no one has ever floated the possibility before. And, of course, this is yet more justification for the Second Amendment: to protect ourselves from those who would kill us for not believing in their ideas.

(h/t Borepatch)

Seen on Facebook…

May 6, 2013

WestborovSlayerYes, indeed.

 

More of the mask slipping.

May 4, 2013

Well, isn’t this nice:

No more due process in the clear-cut case of insidious terrorism. When the facts are so clearly before all Americans, for the whole world to see, why bother with this country’s odious and cumbersome system of justice? Send the guilty monsters directly to Guantanamo Bay for all eternity and let them rot in their own mental squalor.

No, no, no. Not the wannabe sick kid who blew up the Boston marathon or the freak that’s mailing ricin-laced letters to the president. I’m talking about the real terrorist threat here in America: the National Rifle Association.

A few things…

1. As SayUncle often says, why are anti-gunners so violent?

What? You know there would be violence involved, because all the people Dave Perry would have hauled off to Guantanamo Bay all have guns. And they’d be shooting back. To paraphrase Mike Vanderboegh, “if (Dave Perry’s) future fascists do win, it will be a Pyrrhic victory that would, for destruction and casualties, dwarf all of America’s wars put together. Which, if you think of it, is a funny way to have a ‘safe’ society.”

2. Funny thing about anti-gunners. In so many instances not only are they willing to shred the Second Amendment, but they will also go after the others if it serves their goals. Witness Dave Perry’s willingness to throw away the Fourth,  Fifth and Sixth Amendments as well. One wonders if he’d trash the Third Amendment as well. After all, the members of his American Einsatzgruppen are going to have to have somewhere to sleep every night.

3. Seems to me that Dave Perry pretty much proves the point that all of us make when we talk about the Second Amendment being a safeguard against tyranny.  They all say, “What?  This is the United States of America! Nobody’s going to drag you out of your home off to a concentration camp! That could never happen here!”

Oh, really?

Hey, the asshole said he wasn’t kidding. We should take him at his word, even if, as all good progressives do,  he will get other mothers’ sons to die doing his evil work instead of leading the charge himself.

(h/t David Codrea)

They keep lying and lying…

May 3, 2013

..and lying:

On a conference call with reporters Thursday, gun-control activists said their goal is to reframe the powerful NRA as a front for the firearms industry.

“The NRA is a gun industry trade association masquerading as a sport shooting association,” said Josh Sugarmann, founder and executive director of the Violence Policy Center, who is in Houston for the protests. “As gun ownership has dropped decade by decade, the NRA has been forced to turn to the gun industry to guarantee its future.”

FAIL. The gun industry already has its own trade association, the National Shooting Sports Foundation. This is just more anti-gunner lying and self-delusion. I do realize that this is pretty much all they have left, but, again, considering the anti-gunners have been so brazen as to openly talk about TAKING GUNS, their attempts to portray the NRA as a bunch of paranoid fear mongers  is more than a bit off the mark.

And was I the only one who sneered at the term “Occupy the NRA”?