Oct 22, 2005

Rainy Days and Live Albums

Took this thing offline for a while, but it's back now. At least for now. When in doubt, it disappears.

Rainy day at home. A lot of work to do, but it's nice to be at home. I've been listening to a lot of music, as is my way, I guess. Lately, (today) it's been a lot of live stuff, the first being Maxwell's short but amazing unplugged session with MTV from years ago.

On that disc, if you're so inclined, check out his absolutely stunning reworking of the Nine Inch Nails' "closer" - a radical shift from the original, which turned an otherwise bitter and dark song into an affirmation of love and sensuality. Definitely my best reworking of a NIN song by someone from a totally different genre (Johnny Cash, rest his soul, was great, but it was the video that really gripped us, and you have to hear Reznor's stripped down versions of his own songs on the rare "Still" to appreciate the raw hurt of some of those songs). Also, the "Perfect Drug" remixes by Meatbeat Manifesto, the Orb, etcetera, are awesome.

As I've written many times before, I've been listening to more metal again, and just put in the symphonic double live album that Metallica put out a number of years ago. Perhaps an orchestral treatment of "The Call of Ktulu" is a good thing, but I don't know, there's still something predictable and generally flaccid about a Michael Kamen orchestration (rest his soul). I would have been far more interested in a collaboration with a less predictable composer. What would John Cage or Philip Glass have done? Forget that, get the Chronos Quartet involved! Still, it's the only live album they've put out, and if you want to hear something from the vault that was actually respectable, this is what you're stuck with.

I popped in the second Organization disc in a car ride recently - after hunting for and purchasing it through Half.com a while ago. It didn't initially impress me as much as their excellent first disc, but on second listen, there were some gems on this one too. 4/5 of Death Angel, the short-lived Organization was strongest when their music wasn't complicated, and Rob Cavestany was allowed to sing his heart out. Rock on, Bay Area pinoy thrashers. Rock on.

After re-purchasing Slayer's live "Decade of Aggression", their double live album that I'd bought years ago, and then lost in a fit of selling a lot of stuff back after college, I remembered why they were considered at the top of their game in the early nineties. It's a brutal trek through their catalog, the sound is awesome, and for a "can't-deal-with-the-posers-and-the-assholes" kind of day, you just have to play this disk. I don't think any of the other "big four" thrash bands can compare to this live album (and who wants to listen to Dave Mustaine whining live, anyway?).

5 comments:

Sarah Conner said...

Greetings from New Zealand!

I think your blog is really interesting and entertaining - well done and keep up the excellent work!


Regards
Sarah

Rage said...

Thanks much.

burnedouteyes said...

heh heh

I haven't heard a ton of megadeth, but yeah, i think of mustaine as having "peeved snarly" vocals

Rage said...

yeah - rather than the predictable cookie monster vocals, think of elmo. a really pissed off elmo.

still, Rust in Peace is one of my fave thrash/speed albums - it's definitely a great driving disk.

burnedouteyes said...

alls I got is a tape of Peace Sells..... pretty good.