Thursday, April 28, 2011


No, not a male demon.

Incubus is my favorite rock band.  To anyone who knows me, assuming they know that my taste in music is just about as varied as you can get, those words will make them perk up their ears and take notice.  They will say, "Wat?  He has a favorite band?  They must be fucking brilliant, then."

The truth is, yes, they most certainly are.  And today they have firmly re-established and strengthened that fact in the form of a brand new song that physically makes me shiver.  Do you ever get that feeling?  You listen to a song, and suddenly you have goosebumps.  Man, I love when that happens.

Before I get to the new song, though, let me first explain the reasons why they are my favorite.  It all started in 1999 with the release of an album called "Make Yourself".  I listened to this album, and I realized something unprecedented.  I fucking loved 12 of the 13 songs on the album.  That never happens.  NEVER.  2-3 is normal.  4-5 is really good.  But 12?  No fucking way.

But it was true, and I then did something I never do.  I went BACKWARDS and listened to their older stuff, which consisted of two earlier albums.  And I liked that stuff too.  (Not as many tracks were winners as the "Make Yourself" album, but a large number were great and I was speechless.

And the lyrics...dear God the lyrics.  They still amaze me.  "The Warmth" sort of became the theme song for my life at one point, mostly due to these words:

"So do you think I should adhere, to that pressing new frontier?

And leave in my wake a trail of fear?
Or should I hold my head up high,
and throw a wrench in spokes by,
leaving the air behind me clear?"


And of course, let's not forget the "Make Yourself" also contained "Drive" and "Pardon Me".

After "Make Yourself", I didn't think a band would ever make me feel that way again.  Their next album was "Morning View", and somehow, someway, they actually topped themselves.

I could listen to "Nice to Know You" 24 hours a day for the rest of my life and still not get sick of it.  "Circles", "Wish You Were Here", and "Warning" were just as good.  And the subtle "Aqueous Transmission" is the ultimate mellow song.

What fascinates me about Incubus is that they can change themselves and sound different, while still making you know they're still Incubus, and they still are fucking awesome.  "Make Yourself" and "Morning View" were pretty similar in their sound, and some would say that those two albums were when they were at their best.

I can understand that sentiment, but I also disagree.  Incubus to me is Incubus, and they're always at their best.

"A Crow Left of the Murder" followed "Morning View", and it was indeed different.  Once again, I liked EVERY song on that album in one way or the other.  I loved singing "Megalomaniac" in my car.

"Light Grenades" was different still, and it was at this point that I became thoroughly convinced that no matter what Brandon Boyd would sing, I'd fucking love it.  There's a song on this album that stands out above all the others, because I apply it to something very special and important to me.

The chorus of "Dig" is my pact to John.  When I listen to the song, it makes me remember the person I want to be, and allows me to look at myself and make sure I'm not covering up what's important.  These are the words:

"If I turn into another,

dig me up from under what is covering
the better part of me.
Sing this song!
Remind me that we'll always have each other
when everything else is gone."

You always hear about couples having problems, and one of them saying, "You're not the man I married!", or "I don't know you anymore!".  I feel this song speaks to that.  It's something that I never, ever want to happen.

And now, Incubus is going to be releasing a new album this summer called "If Not Now, When?"  The first single is out, and it's fucking beautiful.  Here's a link to it:

The lyrics are so very simple in this song.  There aren't many words -- it's actually quite unlike them.  (Again, they are DIFFERENT, but still AWESOME.)  The song just sounds incredible...especially the bridge.  Goosebumps, man.  

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

For Science!

I have a desire to make a blog post, but I really don't have anything interesting to say.  But, I will attempt to make this post as non-boring as possible.

For starters, John and I finished the co-op campaign in Portal 2.  The entire co-op campaign was thoroughly enjoyable.  It was clever and funny in all the right ways, and the ending was very satisfying.  Valve did an exceptional job at making the two robots extremely expression through their physical animations and simple robot noises.  They stated in an interview that it was a conscious decision to make them mute -- otherwise, they would interfere with the two players talking to each other as they were figuring out the puzzles.  That is an excellent point.  The game requires you to talk to your co-op partner, otherwise you just won't get anywhere.

The song at the end of the co-op campaign is called "Robots FTW", and it's just a brilliant tune.  I highly recommend you look it up on YouTube if you haven't yet heard it.

Aside from that, I've only a few minor changes going on right now.  The first of which is the fact that I've decided to stop actively raiding in World of Warcraft.  I don't have the desire to do it any longer, and I don't get the enjoyment out of it that I've gotten in the past.  I think mainly this is because I've been doing it for so long, it all just feels the same.  Also, it could be that the original circle of friends that I enjoyed playing with are gone, and I just really don't see the point any longer.

So I've sort of left that world behind me, and decided to level up a character on John's server.  I'm actually finding the leveling process to be rather cathartic, and I'm planning on getting more into the RP aspect of the game.  With some help from John, I should be able to partake in at least some light (more casual) RP.  I have no delusions of grandeur here, as you can see.

Aside from that, I've been playing some League of Legends, and that's about it.  Hm...warm weather is starting to be more commonplace as well!  That's a good thing.  The daffodils and tulips are in full bloom now.  They make me smile when I look out and see them.  

Friday, April 22, 2011

Oh Look, Ramblings

It's Good Friday, and while I don't get the day off, a lot of the customers I have do.  This equates to one of those days at the office where it's not incredibly busy, and I therefore actually have the time to make a proper post.  (As opposed to the two very short posts I've made recently, which were the the only ones I've posted in quite some time.)  This will finally allow me to properly talk about what's been going on with me lately.

First and foremost, John was here for a visit over the past week and a half.  It was the best week and a half I've ever had, and I was sad to see him go back home.  This was his first time in America, and I did feel kind of bad that he really didn't get to see very much.  We only went out twice, so he just got to see the surrounding area where I live.  The next time he visits, I'll be sure to actually take him places.  At the very least, I'll show him Pittsburgh.  (Probably a lot of it, since I will most certainly get lost in the process and have to drive through the entire city twice to find my way out.)

Aside from not showing him very much of the country, though, I think he really enjoyed himself.  We did a lot of gaming, watched several movies, and just had an epically good time.  

Thursday, April 21, 2011

That's a Three-Star Offense

In the time leading up to the release of Portal 2, and also last night after I finished the single-player portion of Portal 2, I've been replaying Grand Theft Auto IV.  Controversial content aside, the game is brilliant, as I've said before, but that's not really the point of my post here.  I just have an amusing tale to share.

First allow me to explain the "Wanted" system in GTA.  If you do something wrong and a cop sees you, you'll be "wanted" by the police.  It ranges from one star (not very wanted) to five stars (they'll send the militia after your ass).  You lose your wanted level by getting your car painted a different color, sleeping in your safehouse, or simply outrunning the cops.  Depending on your wanted level, you'll either get a cop car chasing you (one star) all the way up to a tank and helicopters (five stars).

That being said, on my way to work this morning there was some road work.  (Big fucking surprise there.)  Before the actual road work, there was a police car on the side of the road with his flashers on, to warn motorists that shit was about to slow down to a fucking stop.  Only it wasn't a police CAR, but a police SUV.  Seeing that, the first thing that entered my mind was, "Oh wow, that's a three-star offense!"  

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Monday, April 04, 2011

Bitch, Now I'm Deaf!

Sometimes there's a new song that comes out, and I like it so much that I really can't wait until the album is released or the single is available on iTunes.  When this happens, my only option is to download the song from YouTube until I can get a better version of the song.

This isn't a big deal, because I have a nice little application that can download YouTube videos as an MP3 that I can then add to my playlists, etc.  The only problem that sometimes occurs is the fact that the quality might not be all that great.  Usually it's fine, but sometimes there are little annoyances, the most common being that the song will be a bit quiet.

This was the case with the song Simple Math by Manchester Orchestra.  I really love that song, too, so last night I was playing it a few times as I was writing.  And naturally, since the sound quality of the file was a bit quiet, I had it cranked up pretty high so I could hear it.  This wasn't a big deal until the song ended and I forgot that I had my playlist on shuffle.  Pretty soon, Paul McCartney is yelling in my fucking ear.


Now I'm deaf.  But at least I was deafened by something classy.


Holy smokes.  The last post I wrote for this blog was on October 18, 2017.  Through the little more than  two years since, this blog has be...