Sunday, October 25, 2009

Technology Can Still Amaze

So far 2009 has partly been a year of technological improvements. First was my purchase of an iPhone which is still managing to surprise me with it's capabilities to more I use it and find things on it. Now I have upgraded my entertainment with the purchase of an HDTV.

Prior to yesterday I had been using a 19-inch tube TV. A format that our parents grew up on and watch evolve from black and white to color in their lifes and a format the my generation has known since birth. And while HD was originally too expensive for the regular everyday person, it is now becoming the standard in television. And now that my old tube TV has gone the way of technology like Walkmans and 8-Track, I am amazed by what an HDTV does.

The obvious improvement is the wider screen which allows for more to be seen than the tube TV that I grew up on. It also allows for easy reading of on-screen text. For example, as I write this I am watching Ninja Warrior on G4TV and the commentation is in Japanese resulting in subtitles. Because the screen is wider it's easier to read when my old 19-inch it was a strain to read it.

Now the screen size i purchased is a 26-inch, but it's what I would say equals what you would be used to viewing on a 19-inch. My original plan was to purchase a 22-inch but when I saw it in store it gave the illusion of watching a 13-inch tube TV. So I recommend if your buying an HDTV you go at least two sizes larger then the tube TV you are replacing in order to have the same visual feel that you are used to.

As for the overall visuals I am truly amazed. The colors are so much clearer and brighter than ANY tube TV I had watched growing up. Watching TV is just amazing and I don't even had my HD cable box yet. I can only imagine how things will look once that is set.

And as a gamer I truly feel that ALL gamers have been deprived over the years by playing in tube sets. I own a Nintendo WIi and although it's design didn't take HD into account it still shines brighter than expected. Colors and details in games, even the older 16-bit games, look so much better. It's like experiencing something brand new even though it's from my junior high school days.

I'm still trying to figure out setting the HDTV and everything to my new stereo receiver but it's best to wait to get my HD cable set first. Though once I get the sound set I know that it'll be like my own personal movie theater, only without the fancy seating.

It makes be wonder what is still to come in technology. With touch screen computers just hitting the market how much longer can it be before we are using TV's and computers with just eye movements. Or even brainwaves?? Only time will tell.

-- Posted from my iPhone

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Saints of Pain Are Coming

Green Day and Bono should have watched what they were asking for cause Saints of Pain are coming. They got a few live shows coming up:

Friday, October 30th
Ottos Shrunken Head
538 14th Street between Avenue A and Avenue B
with the always awesome band Hate in the Box
they are serving free hard cider all night


Friday, November 13th
Ace of Clubs
9 Great Jones Ave
with hung, devil to pay, and IKILLYA

They also just finish recording their upcoming single "I Feel Fine" with Joey Z. of Life of Agony fame, which will be released as a single with a video. So keep your eyes and ears open for it. Check out their site at and find them on MySpace at

Ashes Within LIVE on 11/02

Ashes Within has a live performance coming up, and if your in the NY/NJ Area I urge you to check it out

Monday 11/02/2009
Ashes Within
w/ Eyes Like Cyanide &
A Great Day To Die

Lit Lounge
93 Second Ave. btwn 5th and 6th st
New York, New York 10003

And check out their site at and their MySpace at

Saturday, October 17, 2009

A Note from Zandelle

Here's a quick note from Brooklyn's own Zandelle:

Dear Friends,

As some of you may already know, ZANDELLE is all set to hit Europe in November for a two week tour which will cover 12 cities in 5 countries. But before we head overseas to play for our fans there, we will be doing a very special "send-off" show in NYC and we want you to be there...



will perform live at...

9 Great Jones Street, NYC 10012

Doors open at 9PM
Zandelle will hit the stage at 11:30PM

$10 at the door
21 and over.

Hope to see you there!

If you are in the NY/NJ Area then go check them out before they head out for their tour. And you can get their latest album Flames of Rage on iTunes.

Friday, October 16, 2009

Thar Be Metal on the High Seas

Most people hear about Pirates nowadays and the first thing people think of is Disney's epic movie series "Pirates of the Caribbean" and the slowly building legendary status that it's main character Captain Jack Sparrow has. And then you get visions of old battle beaten ships and men with long swords, beards, and smelling of rum and the sea. But dare I say that there is more metal to pirates than the gold they are constantly searching for? Oh yes, I dare say that there is such a thing as "Pirate Metal".

The idea of pirate metal isn't as far fetched as it might sound. When you watch the "Pirates of the Caribbean" movies part of what makes the movies intense is the music. I myself have contemplated several times about purchasing the soundtracks to the movies because the intensity of just the opening sequence in the first movie hinted at a taste of rock and/or metal. And how much difficulty could it be to add some lyrics and electric guitars to the simple flutes and strings that we familiarize with pirate music? Not that difficult for four guys out of Scotland didn't think it was all that hard cause they have done just that.

I was on Twitter the other night and the name Alestorm came across my screen from someone and with pirate metal connected to it I was intrigued. With curiosity peaked I set sail to surf the web to find where these lads be found. And luckily they were an easy find thanks to Myspace and I truly couldn't believe at first that it was legit, and then I checked out the songs they have setup on their profile and was impressed to the point of wanting my share of these mates. I thusly set sail towards iTunes and found them on there as well.

With limited funds I had to choose cautiously and so I went right for the mighty beast itself and purchased their Leviathan EP and waited for it to download before giving it a listen. And once done I pressed play and began to be amazed at how the simplicity of what I knew as pirate music was loaded into cannons with guitars, keyboards and fitting vocals and then blasted at me full force.

The title tracks opening instrumentals just hits you with visuals of the high seas except instead of just your regular pirate ship of wood and cloth sails you need to add a few towers of amps to crank out tunes. You get visuals of the most intense sea battles that would make Disney curl up into the fetal position wondering what you did to their laughable pirates. Though in those battles you'd be using guitar solos as your weapon and in Alestorm's case your swordsman being Dani Evans who surely shreds with the best of them. His guitar work fits so perfectly that you'd think he's from a long line of pirate musicians. His shredding is evenly matched by the keyboard, yes keyboard, solos of Christopher Bowes. He reminds you strongly that they keyboard is not just a trend of the 80's but also belongs in the world of metal.

The lyrics tell a story for each song, and the simplest proof of this is on the last track on the Leviathan EP "Heavy Metal Pirates". It simply tells you how they are pirates of the heavy metal variety. You can't ask for much more then that from a song with that title. Each song telling it's own story right up front. No hidden meaning, no symbolizing, just flat out lyrics about what the title says.

I will surely be joining the mighty crew of Alestorm and adding pirate metal to my vocabulary. And after all, aren't all fans of music like pirates? Looking for through the world for new treasures of music and wearing shirts of those we like as uniforms, defending it to the death.

Friday, October 9, 2009

Rock Against Dystrophy hits Coney Island this Sunday

Don't forget that this Sunday Rock Against Dystrophy will be doing a benefit concert at Cha Cha's in Coney Island.

The event starts at 1pm and will go into the night. It's $15 at the door for a whole day worth of music and it's to benefit the Muscular Dystrophy Association.

-- Posted from my iPhone

Sunday, October 4, 2009

The Scorpion's Lair Cancelled Today

Sorry for the short notice again but The Scorpion's Lair will not be on the air again this week. Our guy Bobby is sicker then a dog and there is no one else available to help us run the equipment.

Next week we won't be on either BUT you can join us at Cha Cha's in Coney Island from 1-9pm for a Rock Against Dystrophy benefit. Just check out the Rock Against Dystrophy site for more details.

-- Posted from my iPhone

Friday, October 2, 2009

Busy Weekend for Yours Truly

Yes this is going to be a very active weekend for me. The 2009-2010 NHL season has begun and I couldn't be happier. Been watching some of the other teams around the league but tonight my Rangers begin the season against the Penguins in Pittsburgh. I'm not one to wish ill on other players but could Brashear please drill Sidney Crosby into the boards. I HATE Crosby with a passion, especially when there are better players in the league who deserve the attention.

Tomorrow I will be at Madison Square Garden, my home away from home, with Mom for the NY Rangers home opener. We will be sitting ice level at the Zamboni gate so if your watching the game keep a lookout for me. And if your at the game feel free to make your way down to the Zamboni gate and say hi.

On Sunday I will once again be sitting in as guest host of The Scorpion's Lair from 3-5pm EST on Brooklyn College Radio. Jay Scorpion has put together another great playlist of music from bands you know and bands you should know. We know Sunday is football but the commentators suck so mute your TV and listen to The Scorpion's Lair, you won't regret it.