Intronaut: A Metal Jam Band

Check out Intronaut on iTunes

In high school, I really liked the Dave Matthews Band (DMB). I loved Carter Beauford, the drummer. He made double-bass drumming appealing to me. I am a jazz drummer, and that band really appealed to me as they blended many different genres together into a unique jazz-like style. Most importantly, they were a jam band. Solos and jams abounded and not just in concert as they would record their jam sessions even for their albums. But DMB fell out of favor with me when they released American Baby. Several years later, I grasped hold of metal. Imagine my deep pleasure when I found Intronaut, a jam band in the metal genre. Metal jams are not something I necessarily want to listen to all the time. But having Intronaut’s two latest albums in the iTunes DJ gives me great delight when I hear their jams.

If you are interested in hearing a band jam within the metal genre, check out Intronaut. I have the two albums shown above, which are their latest offerings. They have a few others. I think they are great and very musically talented. They can thrash, but they can also break it down. Their music is very dynamic; at some points they can tear your face off, and at others you can sit back and relax as you melt in the still base notes. Give them a listen.

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Yes, you can comment on my blog with your Facebook or Twitter account

For those of you who are unaware, you can indeed comment on my blog with your Facebook or Twitter account. You need not sign up for WordPress. If you do post a comment with your Facebook account, I believe it will even link back to your Facebook profile, though I have not tested it.

[edit 12:07pm] As seen in the comments below, I have tested the linking–they don’t link, just so you know. [/edit]

Armageddon

One of my all-time favorite songs is Dying Breed (from Manifesto) by Deadlock. Amazing music. Deep lyrics. Can life get better? I submit that it cannot! Note that the quoted lyrics are explicit. This song shows that humans are creating their own Armageddon, and it is atrocious. Consider this:

(It is utterly exhausting, an awful bore
Such a miserable life, nothing left to adore
it is utterly disappointing, the most awful bore
Our miserable lives, nothing left to live for)

Just to start, the song declares that this life is miserably disappointing, and it is, as we will read in a moment, a direct result of the misuse, the abuse, of our instruments, which bring us to our own Armageddon.

No instrument of torture, no weapon
Not any fucking technical horrible machine
Can put the disaster to the next level
Evocation of Armageddon

All that we can kill, has been killed before
In every single possible way
Where is the extreme
That beats everything?

No, the blight of humanity is itself, for humanity dominates to the point of its own extinction:

Humanity is always innovation
Improvement of a controlled
And dominated creation
Our breed has been elected

To discover all varieties of perversion
And become social neglected

Furthermore, perceptions have become warped and perverted:

Pain isn’t what it was anymore
Rape somebody, kill a child, an awful bore
Pain has to be reinvented, putting murder and violation
On a higher non-human level, to become godlike

Deadlock is showing that humanity is depraved, and a true transformation is necessary at a transcendent level. We must forsake power and extremes and remember altruism:

(Ultima ratio, murder the murderers
Pile up their torment and let’s throw ourselves straight into it
The next step is becoming godlike
And to steal his fucking throne)

Megalomania is creation
Extremism loved to distraction
Altruism is forced to rest
Such a sorrowful manifest

We are the dying breed.

Is it not true that humans specialize in all things depraved? This song highlights the fact that humanity is destroying itself and is responsible for its own destruction. Friends, contemplate on these things.

Paradise is Falling Down

While the lyrics within the song are explicit, the song offers something worth pondering. This song, We Shall All Bleed (from Wolves), was what caught my attention to listen to Deadlock, but not because of the lyrics. The music is amazing, especially with the female lead vocals in stark contrast with the growling male vocals. But this post concerns the lyrics.

The song starts off in deep growling fury, describing the destructiveness of life and the suffering being caused due to insatiable greed:

Another heart another life just another test
Another murder another lie just another death

And ours is to suffer for you want always more
And ours is to suffer cause you kill all that we adore

The next two lines seem to sum up such a life:

I don’t need no master to command
I am the law by myself

As a result, paradise is lost.

Paradise is falling down
And you try to leave this god damn town
And your world is burning down
Like rats forsaking a sinking ship
Down to your knees and pray

But we shall all bleed together eternally
For this is the hell we all created

Paradise is lost; it is burning down, and it is the result of the life we live. Deadlock has poignantly declared that we fail to take ownership of this failed life and need to seek forgiveness. In fact, the song narrows the scope, stating that it is the lack of love that causes paradise to be lost:

With every lie you whisper to our ears
(While you wander through all you created)
A town underfed with love born up from pain
(There will be no more water
while your paradise is burning down)

Hell, love. Paradise, greed. While we don’t live in paradise, we do suffer together. What can we all use more of? Love. Thought provoking.

Angels of Mercy

Deadlock is one of my favorite bands. While they cuss, there seems to be something more than meets the ears behind the lyrical inspirations for this band. Check out the lyrics from May Angels Come from Earth.Revolt:

. . . All your pretty faces hide demons inside
Take me from this hell or take the hell away from me
Like the decaying Babylon your empires shall burn and now you cry for freedom
May angels come to save our souls from the lies of this world
Now angels of mercy go find your way through all the decay come and take us away
Up in the skies the storm is raging mankind is now on the gateway to extinction
Through all the pain and misery out in the ruins you seek shelter you will lie screaming in agony until we rip your heart out
An army risen from the graves to regain our place on earth
An alliance with angels of vengeance let the prophecy come true
Now when I hold your cold face to mine I can see that the sun will shine again

Something to think about.

Light in a Darkened World

Like a broken record, I will tell you as I have before that Killswitch Engage writes deep lyrics. In fact, they might even be religious or come from a religious background. The proof is in the pudding. Light in a Darkened World (from their most recent self-titled album) seems to quote Joshua 24:15 while combining elements from Eph 5:14, Isaiah 60, and 1 John. The topic is morality, which isn’t exactly a very metal topic. Read on.

I’ve seen so much corruption
And it’s hard to endure
Living on greed and positions
Is this what were dying for?

The band sets the stage–this world is dark. As such, they call us to make a choice:

Now choose this day
Who you will serve
To be the light
In the darkened world

Straight out of Joshua 24, “Choose you this day whom you will serve,” right? Or maybe it is bearing strong overtones from Ephesians and 1 John? But, wait, there’s more:

Many are willing
To only live for themselves
Turning away from morality
Nothing can turn you now

Is this not the calling that Christians both Catholic, Reformed, and Protestant alike aspire to, willingly to live morally dedicated lives?

While the idea is not very metal, the song is fantastic if not for its lyrics.

Heal The Brokenhearted

I said it before, and I will say it again. Killswitch Engage is deep. Metal, sure, but deep nonetheless. Case in point: Reject Yourself (from As Daylight Dies).

Check these lyrics out:

Their cries are blown away with the wind
How passive can we be before humanity is lost?
Turning our backs on those who need love
We must not rest while healing is needed

Now there’s a thought–hurting humanity needs someone to take action, to embrace love, to provide healing. It’s not a very metal idea, but it is embraced by KSE.

Tear down the veil
That bars your heart from feeling this
Dedicate yourself
Give your souls to compassion

The guys in KSE encourage compassion. Not metal at all. In fact, read on:

With open arms embrace this heart
With open eyes behold the truth
Embrace this life

Something else must be driving KSE besides the drums.

Note the following:

So little time is left
We must be relentless
In our pursuit of those in torment

This language sounds a lot like religious hellfire and brimstone street preachers, doesn’t it?

Now read this:

Can you reject yourself?
Can you feel their agony?
In a world that feeds on disregard
Heal the brokenhearted.

Okay, this last quote seems like it could be straight out of The Gospel of Luke. Dare I say that KSE is comprised of religious members? Maybe they have a religious background? Well, compare this song with Luke 4:18, which quotes from Isaiah 61:

The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he hath anointed me to preach the gospel to the poor; he hath sent me to heal the brokenhearted, to preach deliverance to the captives, and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised, to preach the acceptable year of the Lord. (KJV)

They they thrash and rock hard, their lyrics are deep in meaning.

Love Will Overcome

I have been a huge Killswitch Engage fan ever since I first got into metal back in 2008. This band, I tell you, is deep. And they write awesome music. This post is about a topic that is not very metal, despite the band’s genre. This post is about the lyrics from one of KSE’s earlier songs, Rise Inside (from Alive or Just Breathing). Hear this:

. . . (Chorus) Time has come to make a difference.
Why have we forsaken love?
Time has come to raise our voices.
So rise up, and fight with me. . . .

And note this:

(Bridge) Hatred is a weakness.
You’ve become the victim.
I believe love will overcome. . . .

Love is not very metal. Yet, KSE has no problem declaring the power of love over and above hatred.

Powerful, no?

Real Madrid 4-1 LA Galaxy

Real Madrid played a preseason friendly against the LA Galaxy. The MLS team was no match. Real Madrid beat them soundly 4-1. However, there are some things to note.

First, the new jersey is horrid. Utterly atrocious.

Second, Coentrao looks highly energetic and very influential. Impressive.

Third, Kaka looked good, but still slow.

Fourth, Ronaldo’s goal was well executed. The four defenders from the Galaxy were simply not able to stop him. Unbelievable.

Fifth, the back five struggled to stay organized, a problem we had last season. Hopefully things will improve throughout the preseason.

Overall, the team looks good. With the likes of Coentrao meeting Ronaldo, Alonzo, Benzema, et al, it seems this season will be very productive.

Wilted Roses and The Perils of Polygadating

© James Gregory, 2011

See the relevant Wikipedia articles for The Bachelor and The Bachelorette, respectively, because this post relies heavily on the information therein.

The American TV series, The Bachelor and The Bachelorette, leaves relationships broken and far worse than the traditional method of dating one person at a time with a view towards marriage. The failures of the shows are directly the result of polygadating. The perils of polygadating have proved to be too much, so that the overwhelming majority of all attempted relationships have wilted away just like the roses that are distributed throughout each television series season.

And what is polygadating? It is dating more than one person at a time. Polygamy has been outlawed in the US, but what about polygadating? Currently, marriage in the US ends up in divorce 50% of the time. I don’t know anyone who dates more than one person at a time. My assumption here is that those marriages that end up in divorce are built off of monogadating, the practice of dating one person at a time. I realize in these terms the Greek roots are not correct. Cut me some slack, and afford me the opportunity to show you why polygadating should be banished just as much as polygamy.

The American TV series, The Bachelor, has seen 15 seasons, while its counterpart, The Bachelorette, is currently in its 7th season. Therefore, we have a sampling of 21 individuals who tried to find a monogamous, lasting relationship through polygadating. Let’s take a look at their results, starting with the bachelors.

The first bachelor, Alex Michel, chose Amanda Marsh at the end of the season. He did not propose to her, but, rather, chose to pursue a relationship, which quickly wilted. The second bachelor, Aaron Buerge, proposed to Helene Eksterowicz, but later called off the engagement. Andrew Firestone, the show’s third bachelor, proposed to Jen Schefft, but they later called off the engagement. In its senior season, Bob Guiney gave Estella Gardinier a promise ring, but they later broke up. Jesse Palmer, the fifth bachelor, chose Jessica Bowlin, but he did not propose to her; they did continue to date, but, still, they too broke up. In season six, Byron Velvick proposed to Mary Delgado. They remained together for 5 years and never married. Charlie O’Connell, the seventh bachelor, chose Sarah Brice, but he did not propose. They tried twice to maintain a relationship before giving up on it altogether. The eighth bachelor, Travis Lane Stork, chose Sarah Stone, although he did not propose. They broke up their relationship. In the ninth season, Prince Lorenzo Borghese chose Jennifer Wilson. He did not propose, and their relationship wilted. The monumental tenth season saw Andrew Baldwin propose to Tessa Horst, but they later called off the engagement and subsequently ended the relationship. The controversial eleventh season saw Brad Womack accept no one for a relationship. Matt Grant, the show’s twelfth bachelor, proposed to Shayne Lamas, but they later broke up. The most controversial season ever in the history of The Bachelor was season 13, in which Jason Mesnick initially proposed to Melissa Rycroft only swiftly to call off the engagement and resumed a relationship with Molly Malaney. He later proposed to Molly and subsequently married her. At this time, they are still married. In season fourteen, Jake Pavelka proposed to Vienna Girardi, but it ended dramatically. In the last season that aired, Brad Womack returned, this time proposing to Emily Maynard. The relationship has already been strained and wilted.

Let’s summarize a bit:

  • Failed Bachelors:
    1. Alex Michel & Amanda Marsh (The Bachelor, season 1)
    2. Aaron Buerge & Helene Eksterowicz (The Bachelor, season 2)
    3. Andrew Firestone & Jen Schefft (The Bachelor, season 3)
    4. Bob Guiney & Estella Gardinier (The Bachelor, season 4)
    5. Jesse Palmer & Jessica Bowlin (The Bachelor, season 5)
    6. Byron Velvick & Mary Delgado (The Bachelor, season 6)
    7. Charlie O’Connell & Sarah Brice (The Bachelor, season 7)
    8. Travis Lane Stork & Sarah Stone (The Bachelor, season 8)
    9. Prince Lorenzo Borghese & Jennifer Wilson (The Bachelor, season 9)
    10. Andrew Baldwin & Tessa Horst (The Bachelor, season 10)
    11. Brad Womack (The Bachelor, season 11)
    12. Matt Grant & Shayne Lamas (The Bachelor, season 12)
    13. Jake Pavelka & Vienna Girardi (The Bachelor, season 14)
    14. Brad Womack & Emily Maynard (The Bachelor, season 15)
  • Successful Bachelors:
    • Jason Mesnick & Molly Malaney (The Bachelor, season 13)
  • Ratio:
    • Bachelors had a 1/15 or 6.7% chance of finding a monogamous, lasting marriage through polygadating.

Having looked at the bachelors, whom have a poor record, let’s take a look at the bachelorettes. Will they do any better?

The first bachelorette, Trista Rehn, chose Ryan Sutter, who proposed to her. They married and had two children. They are still together at this time. Meredith Phillips chose Ian McKee in the second season. Ian proposed, but they later ended their relationship. In season three, Jennifer Schefft controversially chose no one. The fourth bachelorette, DeAnna Pappas, chose Jesse Csincsak, who proposed to her. However, they broke up. Jillian Harris, season five’s bachelorette, chose Ed Swiderski. He proposed, but they later broke up. The sixth bachelorette, Ali Fedotowsky, chose Roberto Martinez, who proposed to her. They are still together and are currently planning their wedding.

Let’s now summarize the bachelorettes:

  • Failed Bachelorettes:
    1. Meredith Phillips & Ian McKee (The Bachelorette, season 2)
    2. Jennifer Schefft (The Bachelorette, season 3)
    3. DeAnna Pappas & Jesse Csincsak (The Bachelorette, season 4)
    4. Jillian Harris & Ed Swiderski (The Bachelorette, season 5)
  • Successful Bachelorettes:
    1. Trista Rehn & Ryan Sutter (The Bachelorette, season 1)
    2. Ali Fedotosky & Roberto Martinez (The Bachelorette, season 6)
  • Ratio:
    • Bachelorettes had a 2/6 (1/3) or 33.3% chance of finding a monogamous, lasting relationship through polygadating.

Bachelors have much less statistical success than the bachelorettes. However, The Bachelorette has only been around for half of the time that the Bachelor has been on TV. I would wager to say that the bachelorettes’ statistical success will dwindle as time goes on. Yet, it does seem that the bachelorettes will continue to be more successful over time than the bachelors.

Given the statistical data, what can we determine, if anything, about polygadating? First of all, it is absurd to think one can use polygadating to try and find a monogamous, lasting relationship. The concept of polygadating necessarily leads to polygamy, not monogamy.

Second, it is unrealistic. No one I know outside of these TV shows would pursue a relationship with someone while at the same time knowing that the cherished individual is simultaneously dating someone else. Such an individual would be considered a two-timer who is frowned upon and disengaged. Outside of these TV shows, for those who failed to obtain a monogamous, lasting marriage, I would wager to say that they did not try polygadating again. Instead, they probably utilized the traditional method. Why? Not because they didn’t like polygadating, in fact they probably did like it, but because everyone else in America operates in exclusivity. If a person can’t date someone exclusively and with a view towards marriage, therefore excluding all casual dating relationships that by definition do not seek wholeheartedly to find their marriage partner, then that person can’t date his or her love interest if that one is in fact serious in finding a monogamous, lasting marriage.

Finally, statistically, polygadating has a 3/21 (1/7) or 14.3% chance of succeeding. That’s not very good. And this statistic is for the relationship. If we limit it to marriage only, polygadating has a 2/19 or 10.5% chance of success for finding a monogamous, lasting marriage.

Since polygadating necessarily sets one up for polygamy and not monogamy, and because polygadating is unrealistic and statistically unlikely to yield success, all those seeking to date seriously and to find their marriage partner ought not to take part in polygadating, even if we are talking about a television show. Polygadating does more harm than good as it leaves countless individuals heart broken in far greater numbers than does the traditional method. Each season sees at least 30 so-called contestants. Across 22 seasons, that equates to over 600 failed relationships and wilted roses, though we cannot determine how many of them were genuine, not to mention the 16 failed engagements or monogadating relationships. Polygadating is perilous.

As such, it is mind-boggling as to why bachelors and bachelorettes keep lining up to participate in polygadating. They say that they have come to find true love. Really, is that so? Knowing statistically that polygadating is more likely to fail than to succeed at finding true monogamous love, how can one expect to participate on the television show and find true love? No, they must be participating for ulterior motives. The shows are not about love so much as it is about public exposure, making them a disgrace to loving relationships and marriages worldwide. Therefore, it should be banished.