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FatherAlabaster last won the day on December 1

FatherAlabaster had the most liked content!

About FatherAlabaster

  • Birthday 11/05/1979


  • Biography
    After several days in a larval stage, I have finally achieved immobility, and am currently digesting my own former body while I wait for new jaws to form.
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    Death metal, black metal, grind, guitar, vocals, painting, Star Trek, books galore

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  1. A Canorous Quintet - Silence Of The World Beyond
  2. My curiosity is piqued. NP: Opeth - Ghost Reveries
  3. Is it too much to hope that they don't play any other venues near here for a while?
  4. "The Best", ha, I always love it when they throw caution to the wind like that. I was into that Suffering Hour album for a bit and totally forgot about it, maybe time to revisit.
  5. I dig that Ancestral Shadows EP. Their vocalist does vox for the two "real bands" I'm in up here as well.
  6. Believe it or not, I, too, enjoy it when stuff sounds good and makes me feel good, which is why I like the music I like. I love the sound of a nice baritone acoustic guitar. I played a song with some baritone acoustic for an old bandmate and he hated it because the guitar sound reminded him of stuff he disliked when he was younger. I've heard the standard 2nd-wave BM tonic-to-minor 6th chord progression so many times it's like nails on a chalkboard to me unless something different happens pretty quickly, I will literally grit my teeth, but give me sad-rock Katatonia songs where the key of the chorus goes up a 4th and I'm happy all day long. There's a part near the end of Opeth's song "Moonlapse Vertigo" where the guitars go from the I to the V, but when they hit that V chord, it's an add 9, and the first time I heard that I thought I was in heaven. Harmonic minor sucks. Dorian mode is what the angels use. I have friends who feel the opposite. I didn't know what to call most of that when I first heard it, I just knew how it made me feel. Later, I tried to grope my way to an understanding of how it worked. Some of the magic has faded with familiarity, but a lot of it is still effective. Part of what moves me - what "sounds good and makes me feel good" - is those things themselves; part of it is that added frisson of an experience that feels "new", like those experiences did when I was younger. Part of why it matters to me is that I've been playing music and trying to write songs since I was a kid. I never wanted to play other people's stuff; music was magic to me, and I wanted to figure out how to cast the spell myself. That led to a lot of gaps in my understanding that I would have gotten past way sooner if I'd been a little more humble and open to learning through lenses other than just my own taste. But whatever... the point is, a lot of what I really value about the experience of music is the opposite of "putting my brain in neutral". I do that with other things. I watch murder mysteries with my wife at night to unwind, or read novels to escape for a bit. And yet I'm still a sucker for songs where the chorus section goes up a 4th. I'm just like you. I like what I like. I love how much our options for recording have expanded, even if I'm annoyed sometimes when (if I go back to the clothing analogy for just a minute) the choices that bands make feel like the musical equivalent of going down to the thrift store and buying some old hi-tops and a denim vest. Not that I didn't do the same thing when I was a teenager. What I really want to hear isn't necessarily "new" so much as just "personal" - idiosyncratic, alive to its own emotional content, more than just a template. I don't think I'm as pessimistic as I think you think I am, but it's part of human nature to be a sucker for convenience, and it's never been more convenient to pull a style off the shelf ready-made and churn out some pablum. And, I hasten to add, even the pablum can actually work out fine, some of that stuff is good and enjoyable. The thing I'm wondering about with language is how much it will drift, in the future, with so much recorded spoken language available. "Homogenized" doesn't fully capture what I was trying to say - more like, it seems like there's an awful lot of inertia now that will keep speech patterns and pronunciation in place. I'd love to hear what spoken English would sound like in 600 years. Totally idle, I don't even want to make an analogy to music with that. And no, I don't think people will stop wanting to make something new, unique, or different, I just wonder how it'll be signified.
  7. I'd like to make a different point here... not saying "looking backward" is a necessarily bad (or stagnant) thing. It's not even uncreative. There's plenty to be inspired by and expand on. Just trying to put it a different way, think how much of a signifier mix styles have become - all the purposefully retro-sounding heavy metal stuff, murky OSDM mixes, lo-fi black metal, the clean but dated sound of more commercial stuff from the 90s, djent sterility, whatever. More and more it's all become a palette for everyone to play with as they choose, rather than just a product of the available technology. Not making a choice about that is a choice in itself anymore. That's what I mean by "drowning under the weight of it" - every goddamn thing means something now and it's almost impossible not to be conscious of it. And it does often turn into a template. That reverb on that snare sound means 80s nostalgia, that guitar tone means Sweden in the 90s, those sounds go with these particular playing styles, etc. I used to be able to tell when something was made by the way it sounded, for the most part, but I can't anymore. So I wonder what kind of connection our future culture will have to the past, when the past is available to them in such detail. I'm trying to imagine what it might be like to live in a world where you have hundreds of years worth of pristine detail. I wonder how homogenized language will become. I wonder what "new" or "modern" will even mean. But that's all just idle speculation for me, as much as I'd like to find something intelligent to say or do with it in an artistic context. The new Worm album is a great example of something backward-looking that puts familiar things together in a creative way that I find compelling. It's not a breath of fresh air but it's not supposed to be. Plenty of other stuff from the past few years has struck me that way too. They might be picking a suit off the shelf, but they're getting it tailored. I dig it. Obviously there's a ton of stuff out there that doesn't go anywhere near far enough in that direction for my taste, so I hear a bit and turn it off because it's not for me. The stuff that hits me as truly "new" (which is subjective, of course) holds a special place in my heart because that's where I feel like I'm learning something, getting past my own expectations, actually growing somehow. It's a rare treasure, that feeling.
  8. A couple of my friends like them a lot too. I had only dabbled until recently. I'm really enjoying the new one, I find myself going back to it every couple of days.
  9. My Neighbor's Fucking Leaf Blowers - Drone Trio (2 hour improvised live set) Nevermore - Dreaming Neon Black
  10. I've been wondering about how our era of media will look in hindsight. It feels like we're in a weird place where media products now are so high-fidelity that they won't "age" in the same way that stuff from last century did. Old movies, old recordings, old photos... I was watching some Marx Brothers stuff with my son and realized it was about 90 years old, and it looks it. It's decrepit. I have some recordings from the early 1900s that sound like they're echoing down the halls of time. 200 years from now, people will be able to watch our TV shows and count the pores on someone's face, and hear every polished whisper on every pop album. I'm sure stuff will feel dated as fashions change, and new technology will make what we have pretty outmoded, but everything is so available and so accurately reproduced that we're just kind of drowning under the weight of it, and all those peculiarities of media from the past are available now as stylistic choices for new creations. You can get that 1960s film quality or that 70s drum sound. It's no wonder people look backwards under these conditions. And I think the concern with "authenticity" in a lot of metal creates another pressure to look backwards. Having said that, I do think there's new stuff happening, even if it's only incrementally new, even if marketable retro heavy metal and thrash and throwback DM and 2nd wave nostalgia acts are everywhere you turn.
  11. I used to prefer it with half and half, but I can't really handle dairy in my coffee any more. I don't know why. It just started tasting weird and making me feel bad.
  12. It's so catchy, and haunting. I've been waking up with random sections stuck in my head lately. ____ Voices - Breaking The Trauma Bond Plebeian Grandstand - Rien Ne Suffit
  13. I take mine black and it's gotta be at least moderately strong. I'll drink the odd bodega/diner coffee but it's not the real deal. Whole bean only at home. Mostly darker roasts, I don't like the tartness or acidity of the lighter coffees I've had. The Trader Joe's stuff (especially their Sumatra dark roast) is good, and it's about $8 for 12oz, which isn't terrible, but I totally love the dark roasts from two of our local places and I'm happy to support their business, for whatever that's worth. Before you guys showed up, we had custom rank names for longtime users here, and mine was "Give Me All Your Coffee". More than one new member confused it for my username. Not entirely wrong.
  14. I'm personally just much better off when I let myself be captivated by one or two releases at a time. That's how it was when I first fell in love with music as a teenager, I only bought a handful of albums every month or two and I'd hammer on them all the time. It still works if I do it right. I'm not well suited to the constant firehose of new releases. And it does seem like there's always another great band from 25-30 years ago that I have yet to hear of or appreciate.
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