Thursday, December 31, 2009


I also met Kurt Vonnegut Jr once. To be honest, I didn't really meet him, but I did do him a small favor, and I've always considered it infinitely cooler than the time I met Ray Bradbury at a post-lecture book signing.
I was twenty two, I think. Vonnegut was giving a lecture/speech thing at this Unitarian church in Kansas City that sometimes allowed punk rock bands to play in the basement. I was there with a few friends and after we went inside to buy tickets to the event we headed outside to do something, I'm not sure what. I opened the door and walked outside when I noticed that I was ahead of my friends so, because I'm such a nice guy, I stopped and held the door open for them. While holding the door I turned to light a cigarette and noticed a car pull up to the curb and a man hop out of the backseat and move quickly towards the door. As he got closer he looked up and I saw this face:

Actually, it was much older, and much more curmudgeonly than that but as he walked through the door I was holding he said, "Thank you, young man", and walked off. To this day I still consider this one of my greatest accomplishments.
Of, course, this has nothing to do with what I intended to post. Which is this:

The Cato Street Conspiracy is a split release by two French bands. Bbugg is an 'electro metal swing duo', a description which comes from the band, not me. Personally, I think they have a nu-metal sound, but I'm probably wrong since I never listened to nu-metal.

Juggernaut, however, is the real reason for this post. I've always described their stuff on here as 'crushing'. Maybe cacophonous would be better. I'm not sure if this is the same band.

Here is one review I found, which may help to clear things up.

Oh, and a happy (and safe) new year to all IC readers.
(PS - The Juggernaut tracks are 1, 3, and 5. Bbugg is 2, 4, and track six is a collaboration.)

Tuesday, December 29, 2009


I can forgive you if you missed out on Rorschach's Protestant -- After all, it was the first album EVER posted on Illogical Contraption, and most of you fucking poseurs haven't been around that long. Heck, I can even forgive some of you for sleeping on their Live In Italy bootleg. I didn't post it until June, and I'll give the benefit of the doubt to any of you noobs who weren't on board at that point, either. But if you miss out on Remain Sedate... Well, that sort of transgression is unforgivable.
This was Rorschach's first full-length, and featured singer Charles Maggio in full-on pre-surgery hardcore Cro-Magnon mode. These jams are nowhere as weird and blasty as what was going on in Protestant, but are creative, brain-wrenching, and awe-inspiring nonetheless. Tweaked-out East Coast HC at its finest, if you ask me.

Download HERE
Purchase Autopsy (Protestant + Remain Sedate + bonus tracks) HERE

Below: The 'Schach-er, reunion style, sometime last year.

Rorschach fan page


... Like I did.

Oh I'm sorry, hadn't I mentioned that Sweet Baby Jay surprised me with the greatest and most MAGICAL Christmas gift of all time? I hadn't? Really?

I'm not talking about "brotherhood" or "peace on Earth" or any of that bullshit. I'm talking about the ONE TRUE AMERICAN DREAM...


That's right...
"We'll sell you the whole seat but all you're gonna need is the EDGE!!!!"




















And a very special appearance by...


... Expect a full review in early March.

Maybe you should go over to The Monster Blog and get educated.

Monday, December 28, 2009


Ten years ago I spent a brief period of time living in London. I wasn't there for a long time, but I did have my own place, and I had to wash my laundry several times, so I've always said that I lived there. I was 'in college' but I wasn't going to school. I was just biding time, I suppose. I'd like to say that I had a great time hanging out in pubs and nightclubs, partying constantly, dropping X or whatever, but I didn't. I went to the local (and by local I mean 90 minute subway ride away - fucking London) avant garde cinema everyday, sometimes multiple times in one day, and I got to see dozens of films I'd always heard about but didn't have access to in 'The States'. I watched a lot of things like this and this and this and this, all of which enriched my life considerably.
One night they did a midnight screening of this movie:

Naturally, I had to go. As usual, I went alone and early, bought some popcorn and a beer, and claimed a seat. I relaxed, watched the commercials on the screen, and tried to ignore those that came into the theater after me, who all had dates, and friends, and shit like that, and were loud and boisterous, as a midnight screening would demand. And then this guy walked in:

That's right: Jeff Bridges. The Dude himself. No shit. He sat two rows behind me, on the aisle seat. I noticed him right away and kept looking back at him throughout the movie to see his reaction, which I was more interested in than the movie. He watched it with a sort of, I don't know, subdued glee, I guess. When the movie ended I followed him, which I admit is creepy, to the subway of all things. I was trying to think of something to say to him, but the phrase 'Excuse me, are you Jeff Bridges?" either never occurred to me or just seemed uncouth. Anyway, he started giving me strange looks so I figured I might as well just forget about it and I exited at the next stop.
This is a true story, but, again, has nothing to do with what I intended to post. Which is this:

Myles of Destruction was a Philadelphia based 'extreme metal' trio consisting of drums, bass, violin, and fucked up vocals. For me at least, such a description is advertisement enough. They existed from 1999-2004 (I think). To my knowledge they only released one official album Running Only Makes the Fire Worse which I've somehow managed to misplace. However, here is their first four song demo, Doom Town, recorded in 2001. It's weird and chaotic, difficult to classify, and a little scary, so I thought it might fit in here.



AKA The Pinnacle of American Rock And Roll Songwriting In The 20th Century

Returning from a quick two-day jaunt up to Humboldt County the other day, Sweet Baby Jay, myself, and my son were rocking some killer jams in our rented Dodge Caliber, heading down Highway 101 on our way back to San Francisco. Unsurprisingly, Survivor's "Eye of The Tiger" came on at some point, prompting Jaybird to ask me if I knew what the song was actually about. I replied with a qualified "No", although the very same song had been pumping my nads with its lyrical ambivalence and vague references to "rivals", "tigers", "fighting", and "guts" since its release in 1982. Really, I've loved this jam since I was about 3 or 4 years old, but I never realized HOW MUCH was being said with SO FEW words in this song. It's actually kind of amazing. Without bringing any specifics to the table, Survivor managed to write the ultimate party/fistfight/training montage song OF ALL TIME, incorporating every word, phrase and image essential to being an awesome 80's rocker. In fact, if pressed, I would have to say that "Eye of The Tiger" is simply a song about BEING AWESOME, rife with lofty allusions to "perseverance", "determination", and several other elusive concepts to boot.

So today, I'd like to take a few minutes to pay tribute to this epic piece of American musical history, paying special attention to lyrical content but also exploring the circumstances of its creation and its impact on society on general.

Sing/read along:

Risin' up, back on the street
Did my time, took my chances
Went the distance, now I'm back on my feet
Just a man and his will to survive

So many times, it happens too fast
You change your passion for glory
Don't lose your grip on the dreams of the past
You must fight just to keep them alive

It's the eye of the tiger, it's the thrill of the fight
Risin' up to the challenge of our rival
And the last known survivor stalks his prey in the night
And he's watchin' us all with the eye of the tiger

Face to face, out in the heat
Hangin' tough, stayin' hungry
They stack the odds 'til we take to the street
For we kill with the skill to survive


Risin' up, straight to the top
Have the guts, got the glory
Went the distance, now I'm not gonna stop
Just a man and his will to survive


The eye of the tiger
The eye of the tiger
The eye of the tiger
The eye of the tiger...

The words themselves were written by Survivors Frankie Sullivan and Jim Peterik, and belted out by frontman Dave Bickler (right, being AWESOME). But really, no one person can take credit for an accomplishment so great. Sylvester Stallone himself asked Survivor to write this song for his film Rocky III (the one with Mr. T) after hearing their earlier single "Poor Man's Son", and upon its release it skyrocketed to #1 on the Billboard charts and stayed there for 6 weeks. Their follow-up album Caught In The Game was a relative failure, an injury made even more painful by the departure of singer Bickler after its release.
He was replaced by Jimi Jamison of the bands TARGET and COBRA (that's him, second from the right, below), who breathed new life into the band with tha aptly named Vital Signs in 1984. The album even contained another movie soundtrack gem, "The Moment of Truth" from The Karate Kid.

But check this bullshit out: After Survivor split up, Jamison re-formed the band with a bunch of hired guns, still billing it as "SURVIVOR" or worse yet "JIMI JAMISON'S SURVIVOR". He wasn't even IN THE BAND when they recorded their masterpiece.
Fuck that guy.

According to Jim Peterik, the first version of the song was titled "Survival", and as a chorus contained these lyrics:

"It's the eye of the tiger, it's the thrill of the fight
Rising up to the spirit of our rival
And the last known survivor stalks his prey in the night
And it all comes down to survival"

Can you imagine? Survivor - "Survival"? Crazy, right?
Luckily, the fellas made the right call and went with the repetitive yet superior "Double Tiger" version.

"Eye of The Tiger" was certified double platinum in 1982, and won both a Grammy for Best Rock Performance By A Duo Or Group and an Academy Award for Best Original Song. But true 80's Rock validation came in 1984, when Weird Al Yankovic parodied "Eye of The Tiger" on his second album, In 3-D!
Let's watch:

Yankovic's tale of a washed-up boxer working in a deli, titled "Theme From Rocky XIII", was a smash hit as well, and resurfaced on his 1993 greatest (food-related) hits album, The Food Album (where it was re-titled "The Rye or The Kaiser"). I can think of no higher honor for a song to receive.

"Eye of The Tiger" Fun Facts:

- Survivor prophesied two future hit albums in just one line when Dave Bickler crooned out the words "Hangin' tough, stayin' hungry". Observe:

- It is a common misconception that tigers hunt by day. They are nocturnal predators (well, crepuscular, to be exact), making the line "And the last known survivor stalks his prey in the night" both scientifically accurate and totally RAD.

- The mix of the song used in Rocky III actually had some sweet tiger growls dubbed into it, although the record and single versions did not. Ten bucks to the first reader who can provide me with an mp3 of the "tiger growl" version.

- "Eye of The Tiger" has been covered by boxer Frankie Bruno, Australian death metal band Regurgitator, The Chipmunks, The Jonas Brothers (with Demi Lovato), Finnish death metal band Withering, Paul Anka, Vomitron, Great White, and Christian rock band Echoes the Fall.

Behold, the training montage to end all training montages:

Oh, and one more thing: Have you ever actually looked INTO THE EYE of the tiger on the cover of the album (above)?
Upping the bar on self-reference yet again, you will find SURVIVOR THEMSELVES located therein. Survivor's GOT THE GUTS. Survivor's GOT THE GLORY. Survivor KILLS WITH THE SKILL TO SURVIVE.


Saturday, December 26, 2009


That's right. Take a good long look at this motherfucker.
That's Alf Svensson -- android assassin, psychedelic Space Marine, robot porn star, President of the George Lucas Fan Club, and driving force behind the horrendously wonderful rocket-wreck known as OXIPLEGATZ. Alf did time in early incarnations of At The Gates/Grotesque as well as with the superb and short-lived Liers In Wait, but Oxiplegatz was HIS trip and HIS trip alone. And what a trip it was...
How to describe this cacophony of senseless space-metal showtunes? Lo-to-mid-fi black metal Nocturnus meets Mulan? Disney on Ice, in space, on drugs? Robo-Gershwin meets Alien-Burzum? Mosh pit aboard the Starship Enterprise? None of these descriptions really do Oxiplegatz any justice, but they may serve to at the very least prepare you for the storm of cosmic cheese that is now headed in your direction.
Oxiplegatz released 3 albums between 1994 and 1998, with all music written and played by Mr. Svensson. Annoying female vocals were contributed by a Mrs. Sara Svensson, who might be Alf's wife, or his sister (or maybe both). Here are the second two albums, 1996's Worlds And Worlds and 1998's Sidereal Journey. But beware: There is life before Oxiplegatz and there is life after Oxiplegatz. And I have not yet determined which I prefer.


This, the final Oxiplegatz album, can be even more frustrating and confusing than their other albums, but also more rewarding. Written as one epic space opera suite, Sidereal Journey is basically one long track split (seemingly at random) into 33 really short tracks, which need to be heard in order to really make any sense. And they make very little, even then.

Download HERE
Purchase HERE


I recommend starting here if you choose to explore the strange dimensions of the Oxiplegatz legacy. The metal is harsher and more violent, and the showtuney female vocals are less prevalent than in Journey. If you can handle Worlds And Worlds, you MIGHT be ready to voyage further into the mind of Mr. Svensson. I wish you good luck and Godspeed.

Download HERE
Purchase HERE

"Quest" (the tip of the iceberg):

Wednesday, December 23, 2009


I'm not much of a fan of the film Koyaanisqatsi, director Godfrey Reggio's supremely artsy, heavy-handed attempt at a conceptual moralistic statement about the environment.
But Philip Glass' zany, whirling soundtrack is a different story altogether. In case you aren't familiar with his work, Glass is a contemporary minimalist composer known for his unusual style and heavy use of repetition in his work. Through the course of his long and prolific career, he has worked with everyone from Woody Allen to Brian Eno. From the psuedo-Tuvan throat singing at the beginning of this disc to its 18 minute epic centerpiece "The Grid" and beyond, the Koyaanisqatsi OST is a strange voyage through the mind of one of modern classical music's greatest masters. Trippy stuff.

Download HERE
Purchase HERE

"Main Theme" (watch the film in its entirety here):

PS: I'm Audi 5000 on a holiday trip up to Eureka for a couple days. The internet does not exist in Eureka. I will catch up with all of you this weekend.

PSS: Happy 26th to my lovely lady Jaybird. YOU RULE!!!

Tuesday, December 22, 2009


Plecostomus is from Omaha, NE. They're a funny band. Not ironic funny, they're actually trying to be funny, in a serious way. By that I mean that they want you to laugh at their music. Which is great. They're part of a long history of bands like The Bonzo Dog Doo-Dah Band, Happy Flowers, and, Ween. The Ween link, by the way, is a link to a great video.

Their first album was called Welcome to the Ple-Ground. It included songs like 'Clam Chowder', 'Midget Sex', and 'I Drive a GEO Metro'. My personal favorites are 'Scrambled Porn' and 'Gnome Named Norm'. 'You're a Dude' is good too. 'Connor (Live from the BBC)' is about that idiot Connor Oberst from that stupid band Bright Eyes.

Society in General is their second release. 'At the Renaissance', and 'The Poop Song' are nice.

Oh, and the band is named after this fish:

Both of these albums contain over twenty songs, so I wrestled with the idea of just making a 'greatest hits' sort of thing, but decided to let y'all decide for yo'selves. Word.

welcome to the ple-ground
society in general


Back in September, I published a groundbreaking post documenting what I found to be some of the finest moments in the history of the original 8-bit Nintendo Entertainment System. We laughed. We cried. We hurled our controllers at the screen in frustration. It was a magical time indeed. A time when pixels were as big as your fingernail and all of life's problems could be solved by blowing in the bottom of a game cartridge.
Today, we return to those magical times again, with a dozen or so further excursions into the sordid history of the NES. The NES was a jealous lover. She was a cruel mistress. But she was beautiful, dammit. And we ALL loved her.

Let's begin with a disturbing Australian Nintendo television advertisement:

OK great. Moving on...

I have ONE QUESTION for you: How was the Star Wars NES game NOT the most popular game ever?

Or the Empire Strikes Back game, for that matter?

(Check out this guy's comments at the beginning - priceless.)

Anyone else remember the Contra sequel, Super C?

Fuck I used to love this game (the "3D" wasn't as cool as advertised, though):




Speaking of post-apocalyptic road games, the fact that Mad Max ever went 8-bit had completely slipped my memory until today (thanks, YouTube).

Another forgotten treasure, Zen - Intergalactic Ninja (is it just me, or is Lord Contaminous throwing up devil horns in the intro part?):

Why was it that EVERY GAME based on a Schwarzenegger film turned out COMPLETELY FUCKING LAME? I never understood it...

Total Recall:



Goonies was pretty cool, though...


Talk about a SHITTY ending to a SHITTY game:

(I like how you had "children" instead of "men", though.)

As a kid, I figured out the Spy Hunter "trick" (below), but I could never figure out how to advance through the game. I could get to the "boat" stage, but heard strange rumors of everything from helicopter stages to jet stages to tank stages. I'm still half convinced that Spy Hunter was an unbeatable game.
Fuck you, Spy Hunter.

You want to talk quality NES games? Let's talk T&C Surf Design, starring The Guy In The Tiki Mask on A Skateboard and The Cat In The Tuxedo on A Surfboard. Oh, the hours I wasted playing this game...



Swedish death metal from the early 90's: Chicken soup for the Hessian soul.

These guys were part of the geneology of At The Gates, but you won't find anything "melodic" or "Gothenburg" here. Just ugly, fast, ass-kicking metal.
Somehow, these were the only 5 songs they ever recorded. All the more reason to get them immediately.

Download HERE
Purchase HERE

Monday, December 21, 2009


I have decided to start a band. At first I was going to start a black metal band, but black metal is for pussies. So I decided to INVERT the idea of black metal, much like black metal INVERTS the concepts of Christianity, rock and roll, and society in general.
Since Immortal is without a doubt the blackest and most grim black metal band, we will be the opposite of everything Immortal. Hence our name, LATROMMI (see logo, above).
Immortal paints their skin white, with jet black hair and black paint around the eyes and mouth. LATROMMI thinks such ornamention is foolish. LATROMMI paints their skin black, with bleached white hair and white paint around the eyes (above, right). We will adorn ourselves with clean white clothing, white leather, and rightside-up crosses. We will perform cover songs of the band Immortal... BACKWARDS!!!

Take THAT, you pussies.

Demonaz from Immortal used to live in drummer Abbath's parents' basement. I call false metal on such foolishness (or perhaps TRUE METAL). I will live in my drummer's parents' ATTIC, where I will read the Bible by the warming glow of an electric light bulb (NOT candlelight!). The scene will be very un-kult and wholesome.
I'm not sure where we're going to practice yet, but it will have to be somewhere in the South, where it is warm and sunny all the time. Our inverted Winterdemons will be Summerangels, who will negotiate peace with our foes rather than waging war.

We briefly toyed with the idea of committing suicide, because being "mortal" is also the opposite of being "Immortal". Unfortunately, killing yourself is very black metal as well. So the suicide thing was a no-go.

Since Immortal released their first album in 1991, we will release our first album in the inversion of 1991, which is also 1991.

Our back catalog will be full of popular and easily-accessible albums, such as Daughters of Southern Lightness, Blessed In White, and the five-way split record False Paupers of Norway.
LATROMMI's releases will be easily identifiable by their colorful cover art, extensive liner notes, and lack of band photos. We will NEVER put a picture of the band on the front cover of an album. That sort of thing is for pussies.

Since black metallers are so fond of burning down churches, LATROMMI will sign up to be volunteer firemen. Pussies.

Lastly, you should all keep an eye out for our new record, All Shall Succeed.

It will be most False and Ungrim.