Friday, November 23, 2007

Sights & Sounds

Here it is - the much anticipated debut of Jeff K's Sights & Sounds column that will be running every Friday:

As I am a fair weather blogger who briefly dabbled in his own blog but didn’t have the energy to keep it up, Luke and I have come to what I think will be a mutually beneficial arrangement. I will be taking some of the load off of Luke by taking over his posts titled “Artist of the Week” and “The Links”, although the new “Sights & Sounds” posts will cover a bit broader subject matter.

Truth be told, and I am sure Luke would agree, I have been a major contributor to many of the links posted previously on this site (and by major he means nearly all the links came from him). As a “senior researcher” for Sports as Life (that is a self appointed title), it seemed the next logical step was to help free up some of Luke’s time for his other posts and take over the Friday entertainment post. I don’t like using the word “entertainment” as I associate that with Perez Hilton, ET, and E!...which are obviously examples of everything that is wrong with society. In any case, I am sure this will remain a somewhat collaborative effort between myself and Luke as I still probably get a good 50% of my new music referrals from him. So, let’s dig right in.

I recently came across one of the strangest musicians I may have ever heard. He has been around for a few years, but I had never heard of him before…which isn’t surprising as his music is a bit of a departure from my regular musical tastes. However, the catchy Hassidic reggae/ska music of Matisyahu strikes some strange chord with me. I can honestly say I don’t own even one CD that is even remotely reggae. I have always enjoyed Bob Marley, and the next closest band of this style I have listened to would be Sublime. But…when I heard the track “King Without a Crown” I couldn’t help but bob my head in the most reggae way that I know how. (I prefer the Live at Stubbs version myself)

Don’t think that this is a sample of what is to come in the following weeks on this feature…like I said, this not a great example of my musical tastes. However, I thought I would give you a link to the song and let you be the judge. While the lyrics are lost on me, the guitar riff in the chorus of “King without a Crown” is fantastic and the drums have the funk that I always appreciate… I just love funk in my drums. Also, you may also want to checkout the song “Jerusalem”

Next…here are some links to checkout.

If you haven’t checked out these guys before, here are some links to a few of my favorite Barats and Bareta clips.
- The Other Son

- Windward Reports: Cubicle War 2006

- Mother’s Day

- Auto Insurance

- MANtage “Consuming American Soil”...hilarious

Here is a pretty strange Youtube cameo… Elevator – Gravel’s Gamertag

I also wanted to take a second to address something Luke brought up a little while ago in one of his posts. I tried to find the post…but I can’t…so I will paraphrase it the way I remember it. Luke said something to the effect of “I can’t stand that fake guitar has become more popular than real guitar”. This is of course with reference to the greatest video game of all time Guitar Hero. As a player of both the original string-based instrument and the new plastic version…honestly, I completely understand why someone would choose the plastic version over the real thing. You simply can not be blamed. In 30 minutes, even an uncoordinated person can be playing great songs (along with the band) and feel like a rock star. That same person with a real guitar will be making some pretty awful noise. Playing Guitar Hero is ridiculously fun. Also, let’s not forget the cooperative mode where you can play dual guitars. I won’t lie to you; there was a time when I thought that being a grown man playing a small plastic guitar with buttons that remind me of a Fisher Price xylophone was embarrassing. Honestly, when I bought a second wireless guitar at the mall a while back, I couldn’t get out of their fast enough. It felt like everyone was looking at me and judging (they were). However, I have come to grips with the fact that I am a Guitar Hero. I don’t know if Luke has played Guitar Hero or not, but I have to assume he hasn’t…because I haven’t met anyone yet who after 30 minutes of Guitar Hero could put the controller down (He has in fact played it a handful of times - usually between 2 and 5 am in varying states of consciousness. And I will concede it is a ridiculously fun game. However, real guitar being less popular than fake guitar just seems to sum up our entire culture to me - and not in a good way. I could probably write 2,000 words about this. I'm also probably a little bit bitter because I can't get Guitar Hero 3 for the Wii anywhere). So…again, why would you want to play real guitar which is way harder, and way more expensive? Don’t get me wrong, I am not saying that Guitar Hero is better than playing actual guitar. If I had to give one up for the rest of my life, it would be goodbye to Guitar Hero. However, if Guitar Hero had been out when I was in Grade 10, I may not be able to play actual guitar today.

Also, I am one of many who eagerly awaits Rock Band, the new game that includes guitar, base, microphone (for vocals) and the drums. This will no doubt create some hilarious moments of me and my buddies looking ridiculous.

Speaking of looking ridiculous…YYZ on Expert

At least this guy will have something to show for 6 years of college (like a Political Science degree?). This is ridiculous. Unless you have played the game, you have no idea how crazy this is. This is the tops for Guitar Hero skills.

Last, I wanted to touch on one more topic. With Remembrance Day having just passed, I decided to watch Band of Brothers for the 5th time. For those of you who may not have heard of Band of Brothers, it is a 10 episode HBO miniseries that follows Easy Company of the US Army 101st Airborne division from the day they dropped into Normandy all the way to the surrender of the Germans. Why am I bringing up Band of Brothers? Because if you haven’t seen Band of Brothers, you are missing out on the best piece of film making ever. I don’t say that lightly, it really is the best cinematic experience of all time. My favorite feature length movie is probably The Shawshank Redemption… and it is a distant 2nd to Band of Brothers. If you haven’t seen Band of Brothers you should run out and buy it on DVD immediately. You will not regret it. I was going to make the guarantee that if you didn’t like Band of Brothers, I would refund your money…but I am not that bold, so instead, perhaps I will mail you enough money for a 900ml Slurpee as compensation. There really isn’t one flaw in this series. It has an awesome cast and amazing production value. If you have a home theater, when watching Band of Brothers, you will get sucked in to it to the point where when it is all over, you will feel like you were there…so make sure you have seen it.

If there is anything you have any comments or what to hear about something specific, feel free to leave a comment or email Sports as Life.

Jeff K.


Trevor said...

Rock band is going to be insane...I pre-ordered mine a couple weeks ago.

I will have to check out band of brothers.

Trevor said...

Well if working on computers all day didn't officially make me a geek, driving 3 hours down to Williston, ND to buy Rock Band for my Xbox 360 sure does!

The game is AMAZING and was well worth the drive.