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November 08


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God is Dead
Of Idols
Disgorge Media

Speaking the other night at a now smokeless midtown bar with a close associate and fellow music fan (and local record store owner), we both began to wax philosophic on one of our favorite genres, metal.

That poor misunderstood bastard-child of all music is either loved or reviled, from totally kick-ass (AC/DC’s “If You Want Blood,” which makes Satan bow down) to insipid crap like that “hardcore” CD this reviewer got a few years ago that turned out to be Christian metal. (The very name of which shall be blotted out of all memory until the end of time.)

Luckily, the very next night we heard God is Dead!

Awesome, that God is Dead, right? Just kick-ass!

Okay, you might have guessed that God is Dead is actually a five-member KC-grown metal/thrash band, and we listened to them play with two other local “metalitte” groups, including The Roman Holiday (Their CD will be up here next week), who also rocked.

You can hear several songs, including “Heart of Granite” and “Gott ist Tot” (German for “eat a pickle”) on their myspace.com site. But since they are local, it would be best to see them live because they will make your ears bleed — you know, in a good way!

These boys — Ryan, guitar, Chris, guitar, Craig, bass, Trevor, drums and Will, vocals — lay down plenty of sound. Will stays far off the screamo bandwagon, and whoever this “Trevor” is on drums, he’s obviously some kind of mutant robot or something. They are loud; they are heavy, and not only brutal, but possibly double brutal!

As for the CD, you can get it off their site or at Prospero’s Books, and the record store Little Red Rooster, whose owner is also very possibly a mutant robot. — Brandon Whitehead (posted 11/21/08)

Rise Against
Appeal to Reason
Geffen Records

Given the fact that Geffen Records’ big-name talents consist of the likes of the Pussycat Dolls (who still are trying to prove that the way to feminine equality is to act really, really skanky) and the buried-then-dug-up-then-buried-again Guns ‘n Roses (apparently a fat, sloppy and drug-free Axel Rose is not all that “guns and rosies”), it’s not surprising that they’ve gone for the hipster-band market as well.

The four boys who make up the Chicago-based “hardcore” band Rise Against certainly have everything any hipster band needs — skrunchy hair and, of course, most importantly, they are all…vegans!

Yes, that’s right! The single most important aspect of musical ability — vegetarianism! In fact these four (Tim McIlrath on vocals, guitar, Joe Principe on bass, Brandon Barnes playin’ drums and Zach Blair on more guitar) make absolutely sure that you understand how important murdering innocent plants is to them. They even have a special deal with Vans to make a completely meat-free shoe. I’m not kidding!

This is their fifth album since 2004’s debut, Siren Song of the Counter Culture, and their myspace site has several videos as well, all of which are fine. As for the music…well, it’s fine as well (although their attempt to add “punk” into their moniker is absolutely laughable) with your standard power-chord heavy riffs backed up by white boy angst. Just fine if you happen to like that kind of crap.

Really, the most remarkable thing here is Geffen’s press-release site for their new music, which actually works (although it keeps calling me “Bruce” for some reason), a small miracle in itself!

At least now we’ll have a totally bacon-less tennis shoe, right? Still not kidding. — Brandon Whitehead (posted 11/07/08)

Brandon Whitehead can be contacted at kinginyellow@juno.com.

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