“Matriarch” by Veil of Maya Album Review


 

Veil-of-Maya-Matriarch-artwork-600x600So here I am, chilling in my philosophy class before the professor shows up. I whip out my iPod and check out the channels I am subscribed too. I mostly use YouTube for finding new music and cool skate videos. Browsing through the videos, I noticed that Sumerian Records put out the whole new Veil of Maya album “Matriarch” and I about exploded. I had to sit for an hour and fifteen minutes anticipating the awesomeness of VoM. Luckily, I only stayed in class for about twenty minutes because class today was an optional Final Exam Study session. Who needs to study for finals anyways? I’ll just wait until the day before my finals.

So I had already heard a few songs from the Album and had already been in love. The rest of the album was fantastic as well. I did not even need to listen to the entirety of each song before clicking to the next and welcoming in frission (where you get goosebumps from good music). There was the usual VoM stuff; technical math-core (complicated song structure), drop tuned guitars, and ominous background sound effects. VoM threw in some new stuff such as clean vocals (in comparison to the low gutturals from the “Common Man’s Collapse” Album), guitar melodies in the higher registry, and an overall album theme, hence the name “Matriarch”. Before the album was released, my favorite of the leaked songs was Mikasa, which also had a music video. There was heavy breakdowns, awesome never-before heard clean vocals, and an overall empowering feeling brought forth by the entire band.

Looking at the track listing, each song is named after Matriarchs or powerful women, both fictional and non-fictional. In one of the YouTube comments, someone even mentioned that one of the song names is a very threatening character from an action anime. I took the Youtuber’s word and moved on to the music. I will have to say that my favorite song, other than the leaked ones, would have to be “Daenerys”. I have no idea where the name Daenerys comes from, but it did not spell check me on Microsoft Word, so it is legit. Anyways, the song starts out really light with some nice moving around on the guitar. It then goes into a two-measure guitar solo before the vocalist pops in and the song takes a more serious turn. With some power chords blasting right into a heavy breakdown, Veil of Maya shows off what they are known for. Right after are some clean vocals from their new vocals, which were pretty impressive by the way. The chorus is repeated throughout with some technical instrumentals in the background, before closing the song with a guitar solo build up to more cleans and a mini breakdown. Finally, a guitar playing a riff in the higher register ends out the song.

Most of the time I listen to music on YouTube except for when I really like a whole album, which I purchase to support the band. Veil of Maya, I’m going to support you and buy your new album “Matriarch” when I get home tonight.

Thanks for reading everyone!

I may or may not have a show during finals week due to, well, finals. However, check out www.kssu.com and listen to other DJs do their stuff!

Much Love,

DJGingerbeard

Dissecting The Plot In You


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Lately I’ve been listening to a lot of “The Plot In You” because one of their new songs popped up in my feed on YouTube, and I opened up my brain to see what I can recall of TPIY. Basically, I liked one of their songs a whole lot, but never took the chance to really check them out. The Plot In You is a four piece metal-core band from Ohio, with One EP and two Albums out. Notorious for their harsh lyrics and calling out particular groups of people while keeping that metal vibe, TPIY quickly gained fame after releasing their debut song Wifebeater from the EP “Wifebeater” (which one could assume was about his father). The Plot In You is signed onto Invogue Records, and will be releasing a new album which currently has an unknown release date.

The song that popped up in my feed was called “Crows”, which is about Landon Tewer’s (the frontman) life and how he has changed, but so has everyone else. The “Crows” symbolizes death and how in the end, everyone faces it. This is emphasized with the line “The crows are waiting on me”. This song was an unreleased track from the b side a 7” they never released. My curiosity took me further, so I played the album stream from “Could You Watch Your Children Burn.” I had already heard tracks from their album “Firstborn” a long time ago, but this album really got to me. Most songs consisted of talking about how people who are hypocrites and live a mundane existence should separate themselves, or simply die, from society. Tewers talks about religious folk, lustful males, rapists, and his own family very unkindly. One of my favorite songs is “Troll” which I also saw live when TPIY was on the “About That Life Tour” with Attila. The song basically empowers the listeners individuality and gives the belief that you are a juggernaut and will not take any flack from anyone. Another song that was a favorite by TPIY on YouTube was the song “Premeditated”. In this song, Tewers talks about his plan to kill a rapist who violated someone very dear to him. With clean vocals, dark breakdowns, and the usual “I will destroy you” moments from TPIY, I could easily see why this was a favorite by fans.
All in all, TPIY is a very angry band. Their song “My Old Ways” that was released in a music video on February 23rd seemed to be quite lighter in comparison to “Troll”. To hear that kind of change and it still be a good song makes me very excited to hear their upcoming album. To make a long explanation short: The Plot In You is a band full of angry dudes, relatable stories, great songs, and a uniqueness that I have not heard from any other band. They are probably not sane people, but hey, who is really?

Thanks for reading you lovely people! If you want to hear music from The Plot In You and other bands that I just so happen to enjoy, tune into my show “Shred the Gnar” on www.kssu.com Tuesday mornings at 8 o’ clock!

Much Love,

DJGingerbeard

The Zombie 5 Tour Review


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Last Sunday, I went and saw (in order) Secrets, Born of Osiris, Word Alive, and the Devil Wears Prada at the Ace of Spades in Sacramento. The name of the tour was the “Zombie Five Tour” because it has been five years since the Devil Wears Prada released their “Zombie Ep”- one of their greatest achievements. There was laughing, crying tears of joy, and a lot of sweat in a human sardine can. Here’s how my night went.

Started off with the usual tradition- Dutch Bros. drive thru coffee in Davis. Got myself a strawberry and lime iced Rebel, which is their trademark energy drink, so I was ready for the long night ahead. Accompanying me was my girlfriend while the rest of my crew was saving us a spot at the front of the line. Walking to our spot in line, I could feel the teenage angst staring me down while everyone is decked out in gear ranging from Goth streetwear to gym clothes with band logos. I myself went in some nice khakis and a windbreaker. After hanging out in line and farting on some teens behind me, we quickly hurried inside the venue when the doors opened.

Usually, Ace of Spades has a band open up for the other bands, but Secrets was the first band to go on. The last time I saw Secrets was also at the Ace of Spades, but when they had their old vocalist. For being the first band, Secrets did great. They played some classics, some new stuff, and even a song that has yet to be released. Aside from some ear-piercing highs from the singing, they did a good job.

Born of Osiris

Born of Osiris came next and they straight up murdered the stage. Stage presence out the ying-yang, sound effects on point, and the heavy/technical guitar skills from Lee McKinney reminded me why Born of Osiris is one of my favorite bands. Born of Osiris was like a shot of espresso after the creamer, started off sweet and escalated to a level of strength that even Goku would be impressed by. Well done BOO, well done once again.

The last time I saw The Word Alive was at Warped Tour, and they were all hyped about their newest release, the “Real.” Album. Some of those songs are pretty light, so I thought, “Aw man, I’m gonna see the same performance twice.” I was proven wrong. The Word Alive played a lot of heavy songs, including oldies like “2012” and “House of Anubis”. Before the breakdown to 2012, Telle Smith (the frontman) split the whole entire front half of the crowd like the Red Sea and told them that when he counts the breakdown in, that everyone run at each other as fast as possible. This is what we call a “Wall of Death” and the last Wall I partook in ended up with my shirt getting ripped in half, fighting some fat guys, and almost passing out in the crowd. Fun fact: that was also during a Word Alive set in that very same venue.devil wears prada

Last but certainly not least, the men of the hour, The Devil Wears Prada. I thought that TDWP would only play their EP and a couple more songs. Then I found out from an outside source that their set list was 16 songs. 16 SONGS. The first five were some classics, then the next five were the Zombie EP all in order, all with the sound effects in between the songs as well. After the EP, I did not stay for the whole set list, but I was okay with that. Also, the stage had crazy light displays, including a giant symbol from their album 8:18. The Devil Wears Prada was the very first band that got me into Metal, and to see them live almost eight years after I heard their first album made the night all worth it. They were the best band up on that stage, and I cannot wait to hear what they have next.

Speaking of that, I heard a rumor (which has yet to be confirmed) that The Devil Wears Prada is back on Rise Records and is going to release a Space Ep.

We will just have to wait and see.

Thanks for reading my lengthy memory written onto this blog! If you want to hear more music from these bands and bands alike, or if you know of a band you want on my show, listen in on Tuesday mornings at 8 o’clock on www.kssu.com or contact me via Instagram @gingerbeardthefoot

Much love,

DJGingerbeard

Hands Down for Impending Doom


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Hands down, my favorite band of all time is Impending Doom. Not only have they been around for a while, they were one of the first bands that got me into metal. Their first album “Nailed. Dead. Risen.” is a classic Deathcore album with a little twist, they are Christian. The took something evil and made it into something good, and it does not sound terrible! The song though that started it out for me was “My Nemesis” which basically describes destroying evil in the world and stomping on Satan. It sounds cheesy that way, but trust me, it is brutal. Impending Doom has gotten progressively lighter over the years. They went from grindcore/death metal to beat down/metal core music today. Less blast beats, more structure, more discernible lyrics, but still bringing the heavy. Impending Doom has stayed fantastic throughout the years and I cannot wait to hear more from them. With Five full length albums out, the latest being “Death Will Reign”, I do not see impending Doom breaking up anytime soon. In fact, they are writing new material as I sit here typing, and that makes me sweat… sweat for joy. I thought about writing lengthy paragraphs on why I love this band, but i felt numerical points would be sufficient.

  1. They call themselves “Gorship” which is a mixture between Gore Music (Guttural screams, blast beats, super drop tuned guitars, fast tempo, etc.) and worship, which is pretty dang tight.
  2. They are amazing live. The first time I saw them live was in Walnut Creek in a small venue called “The Red House”. It was pretty cramped, but it did not matter because my feelings of discord were replaced by feelings of euphoria filled my heart and frission overtook my body. Then on the very last breakdown of the very last song “There Will Be Conquerors” I got sucker punched by a drunk man in the back of my head. Even that punch could not keep me from being in the front of the crowd and devastating the floor with stomps as Impending Doom broke down the stage.
  3. They are very friendly and very humble. Meeting them afterwards was like talking to a close friend. Not only that, they knew some of the guys I used to jam with and gave me free clothes!
  4. They invented the “Repentagram”, a symbol of Repentance and casts out evil. The Repentagram is a 9 pointed star which forms an “X” over a pentagram. I have a giant one on the back of my windbreaker.
  5. Last but not least, they are consistent with their music and beliefs. All their newer songs are carefully and beautifully written and they can actually back up their lyrics. Some metal music talks about killing and death and revenge on ex girlfriends, but none of them even seem capable of such. Brooke Reeves, front-man of Impending Doom, is also a preacher along with the other members of the band. These guys have credibility.

If you guys want to hear some more music like Impending Doom, check out my show “Shred the Gnar” Tuesday mornings at 8 o’clock on http://www.kssu.com! Thanks for reading!

DJGingerbeard

Album Review: “The Night God Slept” by Silent Planet


SP.CoverThe very first song I heard from Silent Planet was “Tiny Hands (Au Revoir) off their EP titled “Lastsleep (1944-1946)” was love at first listen. I thought, “Gee, these guys already sound experienced and professional.” Turns out, they have only released a demo CD and one self-recorded EP. The album that just came out titled “The Night God Slept” is their first album- ever. Silent Planet is a Christian Metalcore band from Los Angeles. Although they are christian, they do not like to have labels on them and during an interview, their guitar player claimed that they do not want to play in churches, “but we want to play for the broken.” The link to the interview is at the bottom. With this new album, Silent Planet has been signed to Solid State Records and already have some recognition. Bands like For Today and August Burns Red are backing up the release of this new album and on eight of the eleven tracks there are featured christian artists. Silent Planet is coming into 2015 hot with no signs of braking.

Let’s break this album down real quick. First off, the lyrics are amazing. All the lyrics are direct quotes, paraphrases, or interpretations by the vocalist of other sources. These sources include philosophical books, historical events, the Bible, and many more other things. Not only that, but the lyrics all flow together around a central main idea while also remaining connected to all listeners. All instruments at one point do show their max amount of talent, but they remain humble when needed. The instruments are not focused on being the heaviest or most technical, but they are very talented and get crazy at times. The keep the song entertaining while also complementing the vocalist. Also, one of the guitar players sings to bring in that “clean” aspect to the Metalcore genre. By the way, it is good singing not like a girly man kind of singing either.

My favorite songs (in order of appearance) are XX (City Grave), Native Blood, Tiny Hands (Au Revoir), and Wasteland. “XX (City Grave) talks about the objectification of women as sexual beings instead of equals to men and how that is wrong. The song explains how we should treat all women as sisters and abolish pornography, regardless of profit being lost or desires that men have. “Native Blood” is about how Native Americans were kicked out their land by people who claimed to be Servants of God. Silent Planet retaliated against the idea of the settlers being servants by explaining what it really is to be a Servant. They then compare the idea of False Servant-hood to most preachers today. “Tiny Hands (Au Revoir)” is a Holocaust survival story about a Jewish woman who escaped a Synagogue being burned by Nazis by jumping out a giant window into a garden. There are also topics such as the Garden of Eden and the existence of both forces of Good and Evil. Finally, the song “Wasteland”. This song is about the rise of Joseph Stalin and his attempt to abolish God completely, making himself the new supreme figurehead that everyone are supposed to worship. The song also looks at the lives of the soldiers under Stalin who were dying unnecessary deaths after losing their faith on the battle field, hence the name “Wasteland”.

I can go on and on, but you should go check it out for yourself. I highly recommend that you check out the album playlist on youtube (which I have provided a link) and read the lyrics while the songs are playing. I promise you will not regret it and your mind will be blown.

Thanks for reading! If you want to hear more music like Silent Planet and other great artists, tune into my show “Shred the Gnar” Tuesdays at 8am on http://www.kssu.com

Much Love, DJGingerbeard

Links:

Playlist= https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7d9HHQqtguY&list=PLCslpjrb7cYjhht_4wASD6IGoivkLfD-z&index=10

interview= https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gi_VYGnuHl8

The Ghost Inside/ Attila/ Volumes Album Reviews.


I want to take a moment and talk about some news albums that came out recently, and by recently I mean within the last six months. The Ghost Inside, Attila, and Volumes all dropped some heavy stuff and I checked out all their new albums. Holy snap crackle and pop, they were extravagant. The Ghost Inside with some hardcore melodies, Attila with their IDGAF in-your-face attitude, ad Volumes with a melodic change for the better.

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Once again, the Ghost Inside have proven themselves to be one of the leading bands in the hardcore scene. To all those who say they went “mainstream” and are not underground anymore, I say to you, screw that. If a band can make it big and get paid more so they can actually afford nice things instead of sticking to the underground and getting paid diddly squat for a run down apartment, I say go for it and get big. The first song “Avalanche” straight up pumps up the mood for everybody with a nice build up in the beginning and gang vocals to breakdown as a finisher. The debut song “Dear Youth” covers all aspects of a great song; powerful riffs, relatable lyrics, empowering breakdowns, and a harmony that is off the chain. Well done The Ghost Inside.

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First off, Attila is not a band meant to be taken as “meaningful” or important to your life goals. They are a party hard, DGAF kind of band with a new album called “Guilty Pleasure”. With a mix between brutal exhales and rapping, Fronz (vocalist) has multiple virtuoso moments throughout the song. Some tracks make me shake my head and say “what the heck is this” but tracks like “Guilty Pleasure” and “Horse Pig” get me throwing chairs and flipping tables. Again, they are not very deep and philosophical, but they kill it live. I speak from past experiences when i say they put on a fantastic show with lights, and 8O8 drops. This new album will take their concerts to the next level. I saw an Instagram video of a huge wall of death to one of their new songs and that is enough to convince me that this new album is worth purchasing.

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Last but certainly not least, Volumes. Volumes is a Djent band well-known for their breakdowns, but their album “No Sleep” was not what fans expected this album had a lot of lighter, more melodic tracks on it. Don’t get me wrong, the tracks are amazing and I am happy to hear that Volume’s use of music theory and desire to do less heavy music in their future, but Volumes received a lot of fire. In their song “The Mixture”, the lyrics say “you can have metal back” and in an interview, the vocalists said they are dropping from their label to pursue music on their own path. The album “No Sleep” is the first step in Volumes new style and wave of music, and I love every bit of it.

Thanks for reading, I am DJGingerbeard and to hear music from The Ghost Inside and Volumes (Attila is too vulgar) tune into my show “Shred the Gnar” every Thursday at 9am on http://www.kssu.com.

KSSU, Coffee, and Comedians enrich my College Life


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The title pretty much says it all. The antics and freedom at KSSU, the “Eye-Opener” Coffee from “Ecogrounds”, and the Professors that get my tears jerkin’ and knees slappin’ are what make my experience here at Sacramento State enjoyable. Without these, I would be a sad sack questioning my life while drilling my pencil into my paper.

KSSU, Sac State Student Run Radio, is the one organization that I am part of here on campus. It is more than a radio station, it is a way to connect to this commuter school. KSSU has allowed me to express myself in a way that I cannot in class through music and character. Also, I have made numerous connections within KSSU that would otherwise had not been made. Not to mention the Super Smash Brawling, Crude (but acceptable) jokes, and random moments amongst the other DJ’s  add to the overall desire to continue being part of KSSU.

For those who are not CSUS students or have never been to Ecogrounds, there is a drink called the “Eye-Opener” which contains dark roast coffee and two shots of espresso for a cheap price. I guarantee that in my morning classes, this cup of bittersweet heaven helped me pass 50% of my tests. Fun fact: the CEO of Ecogrounds is a Sac State ex-alumni! This is why we have so many Ecogrounds on our campus. Who knew coffee could have such an impact on college students.

One thing I hate more than spiders on this Earth are boring classes. Being a second year student, a majority of my classes fall under my general education requirements. These classes such as Math, Archaeology, and International Affairs put me to sleep not because of the material, but because of the professors. They drone on and on and on! The classes that I pay attention the most in are the classes that have professors who are funny or unique. For example, my Deductive Logic professor has a minor in Marine Biology and wrote his dissertation on the relationship between humans and turtles. He found, statistically, that one in six people  would intentionally hit a turtle with their car if they saw one on the road. So, the Prof. asked everyone to raise their hands if they would hit a turtle. No one raised their hands. He then said, “Come on, i won’t get mad.” Then as soon as one student raised his hand, the prof. slammed his fists on his desk screaming, “YOU’RE A MURDERER!!! A TURTLE MURDERER!!!” Of course he was joking and we all busted up laughing before her proclaimed his love for turtles.

These are the things that make life as a college student here at Sacramento State enjoyable.

Be sure to check out my show “Shred the Gnar” Thursday mornings at 9 o’clock on http://www.kssu.com

Much love,

DJGingerbeard

We Are KSSU


KSSU

We are Sacramento State’s Student Run Radio Station, streaming live 24/7 on http://www.kssu.com!

Who am I in KSSU? I am the dude who plays metal, hardcore, post-hardcore, Djent, “screamo”, punk, loud rock, and other subgenres, both mainstream and local. I do this because the Heavy Music Community is dying out. There was a huge surge in the beginning of the 2000’s, but now there are so many bands trying to sound alike and so many people having a distaste in their mouth due to the “screamo” phase that metal is looked down upon. DJ’s would rather play Hip-hop, Indie, or Mainstream music fond on public radio stations. Don’t get me wrong, there is nothing wrong with that, but that isn’t for me.

I bring out the talent in heavy music while also giving some lesser known or unsigned bands exposure. At KSSU, we try to bring the best out of both the music and ourselves. In addition to my playlist, I speak for about 1-2 minutes on subjects pertaining to the music or to my everyday life in order to engage the audience, not just blast music into their ear-holes. At KSSU, we give you a more personal connection as opposed to public radio. Our diversity allows people to have favorite shows, experiment with new music, and even learn something new about the world around them.

KSSU is located in the University Union between the Student Store and the ASI office on the CSUS campus. We even have a window that people can walk by and watch the DJ’s do their thing. Just don’t watch us for too long, we are not animals. Don’t tap the glass either, we are not fish.

Again, KSSU is the place to listen to great music and hilarious commentary from the comfort of your computer, phone, or Ipod. Download the listen live app or just go to http://www.kssu.com to check us out! You will not be disappointed!

To make sure I have not been lying to you, listen to my show “Shred the Gnar” Thursday mornings at 9.

– DJGingerbeard

Thanksgiving Extravagance


ThanksGiving

What other day of the year can you eat until you throw up?

None other than Thanksgiving, where we stuff stuffing and good times into our bodies. During Thanksgiving, I usually head up to Chico to my grandparent’s house, or they come down here. Either way, the whole family collects under one household and everybody brings some sort of food or dessert. My mother creates a “Thanksgiving Lasanga”. This Lasagna is like other Lasagnas, except in between each layer of pasta is stuffing, turkey, mashed potatoes, and the sauce is substituted for gravy.

HOO MA GAWSH

It is Heaven in your mouth. Its greatness reaches your taste buds whether it be hot or cold.

After all the typical festivities shenanigans and small talk about who did what where, a brave group of us go out shopping for Black Friday at midnight. Once I went Black Friday shopping and witnessed people fighting over shoes. Shoes! At Wal-mart! They are already cheap!

Last year, I applied for seasonal work at Hot Topic. The Manager was not there the first time I showed up, and was on an “extended lunch break” (smoke break with food) so the assistant manager came to my aid. He said they had a spot to work on Black Friday, so I signed up. I had my employee card, paperwork, and everything. On the day before Thanksgiving, I called to see what time they wanted me to come in and they replied, “sir, we don’t have you scheduled to work here.” Apparently, because the manager did not employ me, my paperwork and card did not matter. After the holidays, I returned to the manager, who promised me a job, only to ignore my calls, texts, e-mails, and visits after an interveiw.

This Thanksgiving, I am heading up to Chico. My grandmother, being a Filipina, is making Lumpia. A relaxing, Lumpia-filled, no work, mini-vacation up to the countryside of Chico is exactly what I want this Thanksgiving.

To hear more about my life’s randomness and shortcomings (with Metal/hardcore/heavyrock music) listen to my show “Shred the Gnar” every Thursday at 9am on http://www.kssu.com.

Until next time, this is DJGingerbeard, heading out.

Major “Major” Problem


2014-10-08 22.12.42I always wanted to do something unique, something different for a career. For my senior project in high school, I created a documentary with the goal of shattering negative stereotypes against skateboarders. The video did really well so I thought to myself, “Hey, can you see yourself as a Film Major?” At the time, I answered yes to that question and envisioned myself becoming a professional Film Maker, specializing in documentaries. However, after going through orientation at Sac State with other potential film majors (who were WAY more dedicated and experienced than I was) and looking at what the Film Classes required, I was quickly discouraged.

With hopes gone and enrollment completed at Sac State, what did I do from there?

Well, simply speaking, I panicked. My whole idea of the “perfect” college plan was shattered and here I was, a freshman all alone at a commuter school. So, I just took in my daily dosage of General Education while debating on what to do for a living. Looking at my skills and interests, I decided to try and do something with music. I am a musician, but making it as an artist out in the world today gives me slim to no chance of “making it big”. Also, the music classes at Sac State call for Orchestral musicians, not Heavy Metal drummers. I told myself, “What about being a producer?” I soon sought after a degree in Business in Music, but had a lot of doubts within myself if this was TRULY meant for me. Then, a revelation.

During my First Year Seminar Class, we read an article that a professor wrote comparing his college experience to his daughter’s. The Professor basically stated that students should major in what they enjoy studying, not what career they dream of. This hit me like a ton of bricks, because my whole freshman year, Philosophy was what really caught my attention. I did well in the classes, participated fully in discussions, and even had one on one talks/debates with my professors. In my first research paper, I even proved the existence of God! I now realize that Philosophy is the major I am striving for. As for a specialization or career goes, I still have another year to figure that out.

Philosophy

Thanks for reading and go check out my show “Shred the Gnar” with me, DJGingerbeard!

Thursdays at 9am, only on http://www.kssu.com