Tuesday, September 28, 2010

The Summer is Dead... Let The Harvest Begin...

"I'm the Lord of The Harvest..."
"Is that some Health Food bunch??"

-Texas Chainsaw Massacre Part 2

Hmm... this past Summer was quite a bummer. Not a whole lot to say about it. Most of the movies that came out were pretty pathetic, and the season was basically devoid of Horror... There were some exceptions, but as a whole, it was quite disappointing. I'm quite glad that October is mere days away. A lot of sweet Horror goodness is coming our way this October, and I can't wait for the endless onslaught of annual Horror favorites that I will be watching the whole month long..

Usually, I'm constantly in a Horror state-of-mind. I'm always looking for current Horror flicks in the theaters and direct-to-video in most video stores and/or Netflix. "Deadgirl" was such an example of discovering a great movie on Netflix. October is so great because it feels like the Ultimate Month for the Horror Fan. Plus, there's always this great feeling in the air. It gets a bit colder, the leaves change colors, it's quite a beautiful atmosphere for the month of October. Bar none, October is indeed my favorite month of the year, and Halloween is my favorite day of the year. I won't really be dressing up or anything, but I will definitely be celebrating this joyous time of year.. Fuck Christmas... Halloween is my Christmas. Call me evil, call me what you will...

Looking back on the Summer, it was truly nothing to scream about. This past June's quirky Sci-Fi shocker "Splice" was an interesting entry, but there were quite a bit of hyped-up Summer flicks that didn't live up.. The following is a brief rundown..

1. "Predators"

This remake/reboot/whateverthefuck was not good.. Weak casting (Adrien Brody? Topher Grace??), lame action, and mediocre acting totally sank this so-called reboot. It was number 1 at the Box Office... who gives a fuck?? The "Friday the 13th" remake was number 1 too, do you see the supposed sequel happening anytime soon? Oh, and no more "Nightmare on Elm Street" movies please. Just let them be!! One strike was against producer Robert Rodriquez.. but he made that up in spades with his epic opus "Machete." I want to see who else "Machete Kills"...

2. "The Expendables"

I sincerely wanted a mash-up of 80's Action awesomeness and gooey gory mayhem, since this was the dude who directed the sublime "Rambo," but this, I did not get. What I got was an "okay" action flick with a bunch of guys who are just collecting paychecks. I mean, I wasn't expecting Terry Crews and Dolph Lundgren to be stealing all the scenery... Now, I almost want a spin-off movie with just Dolph.. And the CGI... the FUCKING CGI!!! It was too much, dammit!!! WHY??!? Oh Sly, you disappointed me...

3. "Piranha 3D"

Ohh... what a disappointment. Okay... Pros & Cons:

What I Got: Sweet gore, some laughs, and nekkid titties
What I didn't Get: A chance to care about any of the characters, actually "Good" performances, Alexandre Aja's visual flair... AND awesome 3D effects!!!

The 3D was weak!!! I sincerely expected a lot more from the dude who gave me the superb "High Tension," and the batshit-crazy remake of "The Hills Have Eyes."

I didn't like "Mirrors" that much, so that's Strike 2 for you, sir!! Bastard..

Geez, it's kinda bad that I would actually prefer "Toy Story 3" than these flicks.. Step your game up, Hollywood!!! I have warned thee!!


Consequently, a few end-of-Summer flicks managed to not turn the Summer into a total wash..

One brought on the gore, and the other brought on The Debil...

Robert Rodriquez's "Machete" and the surprising little Horror gem, "The Last Exorcist." Here's some thoughts on these flicks:


This slam-bang, action-filled slaughterfest rightly echoed the classic 70s/80s Exploitation genre, but also managed to carve (or in this case, slice) a niche for itself among it's Exploitation-fare brethren!! The role of ex-Federale Machete was the role Danny Trejo was born to play! Gore, boobs, and blood were plentiful, and the flick was just downright nasty fun!!

Yeah, it gave me a goregasm... And so far, no Horror movie released in theaters this year has given me this feeling.. Only "Machete," and the now-classic "Kick-Ass"!!

"The Last Exorcism"

A nice little end-of-Summer surprise, this film is basically "The Blair Witch" meets "Emily Rose"... The film follows a "supposed" exorcist who tries to cast the demons out of a backwoods country girl. Made in a Mockumentary-style in the vein of "Blair Witch" and the more recent "Paranormal Activity," it was definitely a freaky twist on Exorcism films and Satanic films like "Rosemary's Baby" and "Race With the Devil." This film is easily the best Horror film so far this year...

October awaits...

Speaking of which, there are various "treats" in store for us come Halloween this year...

In terms of DVD releases, the "reel" highlights include the long-awaited release of the full cut of "Grindhouse," and the entire "Slumber Party Massacre" Collection (FINALLY!!!).

Yeah, that's good stuff..

The great treat for fans of the boob tube will most likely rejoice to AMC's airing of "The Walking Dead," TV series based on the infamous graphic novels. I've been jonesing for some new, awesome zombie action...

In terms of noteworthy theatrical releases, we have a nice bunch...

There's "Let Me In" (America's version of "Let The Right One In"), "Buried" (A thriller that takes the concept of "The Vanishing" to a whole other level), "My Soul to Take" (A Welcome return to the genre by Wes Craven), "Hatchet II" (The long-awaited sequel to the recent Slasher favorite), "Night of the Demons" (The long-awaited remake to the classic demon flick from the 80s), The remake of the Grindhouse classic "I Spit On Your Grave," and, the total genre smackdown of the year, featuring "Paranormal Activity 2," and "Saw 3D"!!!

Being an all-out fan of Horror films, I look forward to all of these flicks.. It looks to be quite an interesting month. That's eight! Count 'em, eight Horror flicks to look forward to!!


"Slumber Party Massacre" Collection!!

AND, "The Walking Dead"!!!

I hope my eyeballs get raped.

Happy October, Everyone!!! Here's a tasty little jam to nosh on...

Take a walk with the Tall Boys...

Thursday, August 5, 2010

"Oddball" Quotes: The Final Chapter

I promise that this will indeed "be" the Final Chapter... maybe.

Anyways, here's 21-30...

21. "The Chair really kicks ass..."
from "Shocker" (1990)

I love this movie. I grew up with this movie. Horace Pinker used to scare the shit outta me!! Anyway, there was a lot of cool lines in this flick. It's too bad they couldn't make a franchise out of Horace Pinker's character. He was a cool villain. And he had some awesome lines. This line, however belonged to Lt. Don Parker, after witnessing Pinker get turned into a crispy critter in the electric chair. I always loved this line. It had this badassery to it...

22. "Get the hell outta the way, Hammerhead!!"
from "Dirty Harry" (1971)

Inspector Harry Callahan has no time for bullshit. If you're in his way, just know you need to get OUT of his way!! This sentiment is all the more evident by this immortal line that he spews out at some lame-o pedestrian. This line rulez.. I used to use this line sometimes. I even used it on this one girl, to which she then hit me...

23. "People on Ludes shouldn't drive..."
from "Fast Times at Ridgemont High" (1982)

I use this line all the time I encounter nutty drivers out on the road... Jeffrey Spicoli, however, uses this line best as he is mowing past people on the road in Jefferson's bitchin' car. Spicoli, is most obviously the one who shouldn't be driving, as he crashes the car later on. It all worked out!! They killed Lincoln!!

24. "Yeah, it was a Hamilton Beach blender..."
from "Intruder" (1989)

Taken from one of my favorite slashers, I loved this line. It was pretty hilarious. Bub (played hilariously by Burr Steers) is telling a tale of when Jennifer's A-hole ex-boyfriend Craig almost tried to kill him. And if it weren't for his brother's prowess for blender-hitting, he'd be done for.
And you gotta always remember the brand of the blender that saved your life!!

25. "Rat-a-tat, tat, tat-touille... Rat-a-tat, tat, tat-touille..."
from "Friday the 13th Part V - A New Beginning" (1985)

Surprisingly, this line isn't from the awesome animated flick "Ratatouille." This is actually some peppy little tune hummed by mega-douche Pete, mere moments before his demise at the hands of fake-Jason in one of my favorite "Friday" sequels that doesn't get a whole lot of love. This Pete guy was just begging to get killed. His death is one of those deaths that you wished would be seriously vicious and painful, but it wasn't, sadly. C'mon, fake-Jason! Step your game up!! You're following in the footsteps of a Legend!!!

26. "You're gonna die, you evil-hosting fuck-stick!! No one touches my Ford!!"
from "Idle Hands" (1999)

Oh, this movie... how I love thee. This gory, super-fun horror comedy is chock full of classic lines, but I enjoy this one the most. Randy was just a radd dude who loved his Crue, AND his awesome Ford truck. You fuck with one of these things, and it's hell to pay!! Anton should know this, even though is hand is possessed by a demon...

27. "Hey, Motherfucker..."
from "The Last Boy Scout" (1991)

This movie is an epic of badassery... it is full of great lines, courtesy of genius screenwriter Shane Black. This one simple line has my heart. Me and my crazed, action flick-loving friends in high school used this line all the time!! Usually as a nice greeting. Anyways, this line is used with brilliance by Taylor Negron, who made an awesome, unconventional villain. Almost like one of those weirdo James Bond villains. I know, if I was about to die, I'd want to be referred to by my full first name. Seriously, who would want to be called Mike, or worse, Mikey when they are about to die??

28. "You wanna go to hell?? You wanna go to hell with me??!?"
from "Cobra" (1986)

Marion Cobretti has committed his life to getting rid of the scum of the Earth. He's like a roided-out Dirty Hairy, if you will. He has no time to hear the mad ramblings of these loonies. He does however, take enough time to listen to the main villain go on about "pigs" and the New Order... blah, blah, blah! Take him out, Cobra!!

29. "Excuse me, is Greg here??... Thank you.."
from "Ace Ventura: Pet Detective" (1993)

Pure comedic genius. There are countless lines that Jim Carrey used in his unforgettable role as Ace Ventura. This one rules, because it was used in an awesome scene at a killer Cannibal Corpse concert, during one of their classic songs, "Hammer-Smashed Face." He then asks a head-banger where his friend is, and gets an enthusiastic response. This is most definitely my favorite scene in the movie. Too awesome...

30. "Slayed by a withering look. Who gives a shit??"
from "Pieces" (1982)

Taken from the outrageously gory, awesomely bad classic "Pieces," this flick had some classic bad-funny lines ("It's my Kung Fu Professor!"), but I always got a kick out of this line. This line was used by the dorky friend of campus hotshot Kendall. Tryin' to be all suave, he tries hitting on a girl with disastrous results. He then utters this great line. I always crack up to that line. Great line, excellent movie...

Before I leave you, there are 10 great Runners-up that need be mentioned...


1. "She's a wanker! You're all wankers!!"
from "Reform School Girls" (1987)

2. "I foken' hate pikeys..."
from "Snatch" (2000)

3. "I hope your pants get caught, and a bloodbath ensues!!"
from "Mallrats" (1995)

4. "What's this boy talkin' 'bout on the telephone, mann??"
from "Weird Science" (1985)

5. "Shut your fat ass, Ravie!! I can't buy a pack of smokes without runnin' into 9 guys you fucked!!"
from "Boondock Saints" (1999)

6. "The days are like women. Each one is so damn precious... but they always end up leaving me..."
from "Assault on Precinct 13" (1976)

7. "Clean food, please..."
from "Fight Club" (1999)

8. "Bill's a good guy. He's been a big help to me, a real blessin'... I mean, I couldn't have asked for a better specimen. You don't know, what kind of dry spell I've been having here! Total block!! total block!!! But Bill, he's okay..."
from "House of 1000 Corpses"

9. "You taste like a burger. I don't like you anymore..."
from "Wet Hot American Summer" (2001)

10. "That'll do pig..."
from "Zombieland" (2009)

There you have it, folks!! That's it!! Class dismembered...

I leave you with this epic quote from the genius that is "Pieces"...

Sunday, August 1, 2010

"Oddball" Quotes Part Deux: The Second Story

And, this time... it IS personal...

The following is 11-20...

11. "S-C-E-X?? Sex? Well, you had to find out about it, didn't ya?? You just couldn't leave it alone. If you wanted to know about it so bad, why didn't you ask me? You wanna know about it? You wanna know about it? Ask me! Ask me!!"
from "The Texas Chainsaw Massacre Part 2" (1986)

All the lines from this flick and Tobe Hooper's original "Texas Chainsaw Massacre" are all great quotes. With the sequel, there was definitely a great abundance of quoteworthy moments. Literally all the characters had great lines. From Stretch ("Are you mad at me??"), to Lefty ("Bring it all down!!!"), to ol' L.G. ("I built you a fry house."), to of course, Chop-Top, one of my favorite movie villains. Lines like "Time for incoming MAIL!!!" and "Lick my plate, you dogdick!!" are a few of the many great quotes uttered by this wacky character. The line above, however, belongs to The Cook... Reprising his role from the first film, Jim Siedow added a whole other level of insanity and hilarity to this role, as evidenced by his "sex" speech to poor lovestruck Bubba (that's Leatherface to you...). I can write a catalog about Chop-Top's numerous great lines, but this line always gets to me.

12. "Ah, man. I shot Marvin in the face."
"Why the fuck'd ya do that??"
from "Pulp Fiction" (1994)

"Pulp Fiction" is a work of insane genius. It is one of my top favorite films, and this is probably my favorite line in the damn movie!! Of course you have great lines like the "Royale with cheese," and the "Ezekiel 25:17" speech, but this line is just so perfectly hilarious. I love how Vincent says it like it's no big thing. Obviously, Jules and Vincent have seen their share of ultraviolence... Oh, and poor Marvin. At least Big Kahuna Burger was his last meal.
I'd prefer some In-and-Out...

13. "Oh Sandy... don't make me laugh. Ha, ha, ha..."
from "Grease" (1978)

I don't really dig on most musicals, but this is a pretty good flick. Plus, I figure another Travolta quote won't hurt none. Anyway, I always thought this line was pretty hilarious. His delivery of the line reminded me of his classic character of Barbarino from the show "Welcome Back Kotter." I loves da Sweathogs...

14. "Don't dance near the chemicals!! In fact, don't dance at all..."
from "Rock and Roll High School" (1979)

Riff Randle just wants her school to rawk!! And some all-out chaos begins during the opening credits as she blares the Ramones classic, "Sheena is a Punk Rocker" on her school's PA system!! All the classes erupt, and everyone starts to dance! The Science teacher, however feels it is quite unsafe to be dancing near the chemicals, as evidenced by this great line. There are many great, memorable lines in this flick, but I always thought this one was pretty random and cool. Gee whiz... doesn't this teacher know that he cannot stop the Fire of Youth??

15. "PIGGY!! Hahaha!!! Here, Piggy..."
from "Carrie" (1976)

Travolta is appearin' all over the place!! He had a lot of great lines in this film as the incorrigible Billy Nolan. but this line belonged to his buddy-pal Freddy. During the infamous "Pig-killing" sequence, Freddy provoked the poor pigs by chanting this creepy line. The delivery of this line was pretty damn creepy, but once it came down to the killin', he wasn't up to it. So, Billy makes fun of him and does it himself. The whole banter between him and Freddy during this scene was pretty hilarious. He even utters "Git 'r done!" way before that Cable Guy douche...

16. "You're killin' me, Smalls."
from "The Sandlot" (1993)

Back when I was a kid, this was my MOVIE!! There was a time, when this demented mind liked his kid flicks. Like the "Problem Child" flicks, the "Mighty Duck" flicks, "Three Ninjas," etc. This one remains a timeless favorite. You can't blame poor Smalls for not knowing Jack about Tobacco, Baseball, and gnarly S'mores... but his pals made fun of him anyway, most notably "Ham," with this classic line. I'm sure at one point in time, everyone has felt like Smalls as a kid. I liked Bertram. He was my dawgg...

17. "Our responsibilities are finished..."
from "Dawn of the Dead" (1979)

There are boundless amounts of quote-age from this seminal zombie classic, but this particular line is my favorite. It's very simple, effective, and had a great delivery. During the frantic opening credits scene, all-out chaos is abound at a television station during a mass zombie outbreak, as specialists are arguing what makes the zombies tick. Everyone starts evacuating when they find out that most of the rescue stations have closed down. Our main heroine Fran is then confronted by her pushy boyfriend Steven (Flyboy) to go with him. One of the camera operators at the station insists that she goes, uttering this great line. I feel that I really identify with this line. If I was to be one of the characters in this film, it'd be that guy. Hopefully, I would survive...

18. "Everything is true. God is an Astronaut. Oz is over the rainbow... And Midian is where the monsters live..."
from "Nightbreed" (1990)

One of my favorite underrated horror flicks, this was Clive Barker's bloody fun follow-up to "Hellraiser." In this flick, all Boone wants to do is become one of the Nightbreed, which is this underground world of gnarly-lookin' monsters, including Peloquin, my favorite badasss. In a memorable sequence, Boone has an unfortunate run-in with this guy, in which he utters this line of epic awesomeness. It's pure poetry...
I want to be Peloquin!! He rulezzz!!!

19. "I want two meatball sandwiches... Utah!! Get me two!!"
from "Point Break" (1991)

You gots to love Busey... As Special Agent Angelo Pappas, Busey put a lot of quirkiness and downright awesomeness to his role. And him and Johnny fuckin' Utah made a great pair. It is especially evident in this one scene where he instructs Utah to get him some food. All he wanted was his meatball sammiches... but, oh no. The Ex-Presidents had ta foul it up...

Hey, Punk Rockerrr...

20. "Don't make me laugh, Baby Pig. This takes concentration..."
from "Demons" (1985)

It's badly dubbed, which makes it all the more awesome. It's also a true horror classic, and it's full of great quotes. This one, however, is my favorite. Shit is hitting the fan as demons are invading a mysterious theater. Meanwhile, a group of Go West-loving punkers are drivin' around and sniffing coke out of a Coke can. That's product placement for ya... An argument arises, which leads to some of the punkers to spill some of the yayo. This pisses off leader "Ripper" something fierce, and he makes the other three pick up "every gram!!" This leads to this hilarious quote from one of the punkers. I love that line, and I love this movie!!

Here's a nice runner-up from that same film:

"You look like you're scared of breakin'!!"

Ahh... Tony The Pimp... he was so awesome. And it sounds like a line that comes from those "Breakin'" movies. Boogaloo Shrimp!!!

That is all for this installment...

Stay tuned for Part 3...

Friday, July 30, 2010

A Tribute to My Top 30 Favorite "Oddball" Quotes from Movies... Part 1

There's nothing I love more than a bitchin' one-liner from a totally radd movie... From classic comedies ("Go back to your home on Whore Island!" from "Anchorman"), kick-ass action flicks ("Get to the choppa!!" from "Predator"), and, of course, horror flicks (the classic, "Groovy." from "Evil Dead 2"), there are boundless amounts of epic quote-age from all sorts of movies. The certain lines I enjoy are the quirkier ones. The ones that are just plain weird, but also pretty hilarious...

The following are 10 (out of 30) quotes that aren't the most frequently used or referenced by fans, but are still pretty awesome and noteworthy...

1. "Are you on PCP?!??"
from "Return of the Living Dead" (1985)

During one fateful shitstorm of a day, hapless mortuary attendant Ernie Carltonbruner fears the worst as he opens his front door of the mortuary to find a trio of weirdo punkers... Brandishing a gun, he rapidly points it at them and utters this immortal line. I always crack up heavily to this great, bizarre line. But hey, PCP was the "in" drug during those days...

2. "Ho, ho, ho... no dickie, no washy..."
from "The Toxic Avenger" (1986)

One of the great cult classics, this flick is full of zingers ("I always wanted to cornhole me a blind bitch!"), but this one is my all-time favorite. For some reason or another, dear old Toxie decides to dispatch of a tiny, seemingly innocent woman by shoving her into a dry-cleaning machine at the local laundromat. Hilarity ensues, as does this radical line. I love Toxie...

3. "Hey, this is a private residence, mann..."
from "The Big Lebowski" (1998)

It was either this or the "human paraquat" line. The whole damn movie is quoteworthy!!! I've always loved this line, though. All The Dude wanted to do was relax in his tub, and smoke some ganj... but then these freaky Nihilists show up with their "marmutt" and invade his delicate personal space. They obviously didn't care. They believe in "nu'ting!!"

4. "Is this the Cocksucker Residence??"
from "Serial Mom" (1994)

In a awesomely hilarious sequence, seemingly normal well-to-do homemaker Beverly Suckphin viciously prank calls her neighbor and unleashes a slew of righteous obscenities including this kneeslapper. My all-time favorite of all of John Waters' films, as well as the best line in that movie...

5. "I like to suck big dicks... Hmmmm... Hmmmmmm.... I can't get enough of 'em! Are you satisfied??"
from "Heathers" (1989)

Oh, Kurt and Ram. They were mature. They were "Seniors." But that didn't stop them from making some unfortunate geek confess an unspeakable act (near a church, no less...). The utterance of this unforgettable line was beyond hilarious. And the look on Ram's face during this "confessional" was priceless...

6. "You'd think I'd at least rate a Michelob..."
from "River's Edge" (1986)

Poor Layne. After covering up the murder that his dim-witted buddy performed earlier, all he wanted was some appreciation... in the form of beer. Instead, he got a generic brand that was "warm, even!" He can't catch a break... Crispin Glover owned that role of Layne, the hapless leader of a group of teenage outcasts who decides to help his "friend" who murdered his own girlfriend. And if a nice Michelob isn't the nicest form of friendship, I don't know what is...

7. "Do something, DAMMIT!!"
from "Night of the Creeps" (1986)

Obviously, there are tons of great lines from this classic 80s zombie flick ("Thrill me!!"), but I always tend to seriously crack up with this one. Poor Cynthia just witnessed the horror of seeing creepy slugs spewing out of her boyfriend's mouth, in which he then got shotgun-blasted to the head and burned alive by his ginger-haired competitor Chris ("Nothing personal..."). Frozen with fear, Chris pleads with her to use the flame-thrower on the surrounding crowd of zombies drawing near, by uttering this line. I don't know what it is, but there is just something about this line...

8. "I used to like these guys..."
from "Repo Man" (1984)

Oh, the melancholy of Otto. His favorite and once promising Hardcore band the Circle Jerks have turned into a bleedin' lounge act!! And it is hilariously reflected by this line from the Punk Cult classic...

9. "Fuck that shit!! Pabst Blue Ribbon!!!"
from "Blue Velvet" (1986)

Don't give Frank fucking Booth a pussy Heinekin!! Give him the good shit, dammit!! This is my favorite line from the David Lynch classic featuring the awesome performance of the late Dennis Hopper as Booth...

10. "You're a pain, Taffy. A pain in my big asshole!!"
from "Female Trouble" (1974)

The strained relationship between Dawn Davenport and her nutty daughter Taffy is fully realized with this memorable quote from John Waters' landmark movie of equal parts hilarity and "disgustitude"...

Runner-up: "Have another pretzel for Chrissake..."

God, I loves that movie...

Anywho, stay tuned for Part Deux, kiddies!!!

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Saluting the Top 10 Punk Movies of All-Time

I've been on this "Punk movie" kick lately. Over the past few days, I've been watching the shit out of these beauties. I love Punk films. I wish they would make more of them (especially nowadays). There have been some good recent ones, like the recent Darby Crash biopic "What We Do is Secret," and the really recent biopic "The Runaways," which I saw this week (and it wasn't too bad...). The main appeal of Punk movies is that they all usually have really great songs on their soundtrack, and it's fun to watch a really great movie that has an equally great soundtrack that I can identify with. Even the Tom Green sick-fest "Freddy Got Fingered" had a pretty rockin' soundtrack. And I loved the skatepunk movie "Lords of Dogtown," but the soundtrack was full of classic rock hits (which isn't too bad either...). Much love also goes to great Punk documentaries like "New York Doll" (a touching story of the last days of Arthur "Killer" Kane), and the entertaining story about the Minutemen, "We Jam Econo: The Story of the Minutemen." I wouldn't say Punk movies are my favorite kinds of movies (that belongs to Horror, of course...), but I love watching me a kickass Punk movie now and then...

The following is a list of my Top 10 Favorite Punk Movies of All-Time:

1. "SLC Punk!" (1999)

The first time I watched this seminal film, I was enthralled. From the beginning credits featuring the Punk classic "Sex and Violence" by The Exploited, I knew I would love this movie. Following the exploits of the memorable characters of Stevo and Heroin Bob, and the many misadventures they get into in their much-hated Mormon Mecca of Salt Lake City, Utah, this movie had it all. It was tragic, hilarious, dark, romantic, edgy, in-your-face, and full of great Punk classics!!! This is one of my favorite films of all-time. It's one of those films I can always watch, and never get tired of...

Music Highlights:
1. "Kill the Poor" Dead Kennedys
2. "Cretin Hop" Ramones
3. "1969" The Stooges
4. "Amoeba" Adolescents
5. "Look Back and Laugh" Minor Threat

2. "Return of the Living Dead" (1985)

A rare instance where a flick is a true Horror classic, AND a true Punk classic!! Featuring tunes from The Cramps, The Damned, and TSOL, this flick makes me wanna "PARTY!!!" Two dummies "accidentally" unleash a toxic gas from a canister that contains a dead body (happens every day, right? I wish.). The gas is unleashed into the air, causing an "acid rain" storm, which rains on the parade of a gang of punk rockers that are partying at a cemetery nearby... Seriously, this kind of thing happens every day!! The fit hits the shan, unstoppable zombies rise from their graves for some cranial lunch, and some of our Punkers are indeed in for a bogus night... I LOVE this movie!!! It's one of my ultimate favorite Zombie flicks, and I literally love it to death! Filled with memorable characters like Trash, Suicide, and Scuz, amongst others, and filled with awesome one-liners ("Are you on drugs?? Are you on PCP??!?"), this movie is a classic on so many levels!!

Music Highlights:
1. "Surfin' Dead" The Cramps
2. "Nothin' For You" TSOL
3. "Dead Beat Dance" The Damned
4. "Take a Walk" Tall Boys
5. "Eyes Without a Face" Flesheaters

3. "Rock and Roll High School" (1979)

I love me some "Ramoneys," and I love this movie!!! Riff Randle is My Dream... Seriously, why weren't there any tubular Ramones-loving chicks in my high school? What a shame... This classic told the tale of my favorite Ramones fan trying to score tickets to their upcoming concert, all the while avoiding the dreadful Dictatorship of her new high school principal Miss Togar at Vince Lombardi High. Featuring some classic Ramones tune-age, as well as Punk classics like "High School" by MC5, "Teenage Depression" by Eddie and The Hot Rods, and "Rock & Roll" by Velvet Underground, the soundtrack to this movie is BEYOND awesome!! The movie, is of course, an ultimate cult classic, and P.J. Soles most definitely captured my heart as Ramones-lover Riff Randle, who, with The Ramones' help, blew up her school at the end!! THAT IS PUNK!!!!

I love you, Riff Randle...

Music Highlights
ALL of the great Ramones hits, like "Blitzkrieg Bop," "I Wanna Be Sedated," "Pinhead," "I Want You Around," and, the title of the damn movie!!! Awesome stuff!!!

Classic scene:

4. "Decline of Western Civilization" (1981)

As far as Punk documentaries go, this one is the ultimate one. Classic bands like X, Black Flag, Circle Jerks, Fear, and The Germs perform live and in-your-face in this raw expose' on the Punk scene in L.A. Director Penelope Spheeris (who would later on achieve success with "Wayne's World," amongst other films) interviewed many of the members of these bands and captured some raw performance footage that is unmatched compared to other Punk docs. She also interviewed some "actual" punkers in a very memorable sequence. The live soundtrack is as great as the film, and the film remains a true cult classic that is in dire need of a DVD release...

One of my favorite scenes...

5. "Repo Man" (1984)

No, I am not talking about that shitty Jude Law movie (fuckers...), I am talking about this wacky Sci-Fi, Action, Comedy Cult Punk Rock Classic!!! You had Punks, Drunks, UFO cultists, "Intense" moments, Criminals, Weird theories, the fuckin' Rodriquez Brothers, Beer, "Sushi," more Beer, and Repo Wives!!! Yay!! Starring Emilio Estevez, before he got all "Mighty Duck-ed," this flick was a classic of epic proportions!! Featuring songs from such bands like Black Flag, Fear, Iggy Pop, Suicidal Tendencies, and even an epic "live" performance of the Circle Jerks, this is another cult classic I can watch over and over again!!!

Music Highlights:
1. "TV Party" Black Flag
2. "Repo Man" Iggy Pop
3. "Let's Have a War" Fear
4. "Institutionalized" Suicidal Tendencies
5. "When The Shit Hits the Fan" Circle Jerks

"I used to like these guys..."

6. "Sid and Nancy" (1986)

Alex Cox, the director of "Repo Man," followed that classic up with this classic Punk ode to the doomed lovers Sid Vicious and Nancy Spungeon. Filled to the brim with classic Sex Pistols jams, not to mention the score, courtesy of The Pogues, Pray for Rain, and Joe Strummer, the music took a backseat to the tragic story of the romance between the former Sex Pistol and his walking disaster of a love mate. As they were addicted to each other, they were just as addicted to heroin. The terrific pairing of a young Gary Oldman and Chloe Webb cemented the tragedy and heartbreak of this story, as Sid allegedly killed Nancy, and later OD'ed himself. Either this is a story of true love, or a story of how dangerous "love" can be. The film remains a classic, and contains one of Gary Oldman's finest performances, not to mention a performance by a young Courtney Love, who almost PLAYED Nancy!!

Music Highlights:
Aside from the score, the various classics from the Sex Pistols debut album, "Never Mind the Bollocks, Here's The Sex Pistols" which is one of the greatest albums of all time!!!

7. "Suburbia" (1983)

Director Penelope Spheeris followed up her "Decline" with this gritty, hard-edged look at homeless punkers trying to survive in Suburbia. Featuring a cast of unknowns (including a young Flea from Red Hot Chili Peppers), the acting wasn't the best, but the movie is a classic Punk film. The music is intense, the performances were raw, and the film took the Punk mantra "No Future" to a whole new meaning. The film also featured classic live performances from T.S.O.L., D.I., and The Vandals. Spheeris most definitely remains one of the greatest Punk movie directors (alongside Alex Cox).

8. "American Hardcore" (2006)

Based on the book by Steven Blush, this rousing, entertaining documentary traced the roots of the movement known as Hardcore from 1980 to 1986. From L.A., to New York, and from DC to Boston, many regions across the country were covered, and many bands were mentioned, including Bad Brains, Black Flag, Minor Threat, T.S.O.L., Circle Jerks, DOA, Middle Class, SSD, Cro-Mags, and various other classic Hardcore bands. Many icons of Hardcore were interviewed such as Henry Rollins, Ian MacKaye, Keith Morris, H.R., and Jack Grisham, amongst others, which makes this a real treat for Punk and Hardcore fans...

9. "Punk! Attitude" (2005)

Another entertaining Punk doc, directed by Don Letts, this movie traced the entire history of the Punk movement going back to the early days with the Velvet Underground, The MC5, The Stooges, The New York Dolls, etc., to the 70s, where Punk exploded, with such bands like Ramones, The Clash, The Sex Pistols, etc. It also covered the Hardcore movement, as well as the Grunge movement in the early 90s. Featuring interviews from Henry Rollins, Chrissy Hynde, David Johansen, Jello Biafra, and various other Punk icons, this film put a nice "cap" on the Punk movement. I only wished it was longer...

10. "Wassup Rockers" (2005)

Larry Clark took a break from his grim storytelling in such gritty fare like "Kids" and "Bully" with this more light-hearted concept about a gang of Mexican skatepunk kids trying to find their way home from the weird, wild jungle of Beverly Hills to the "safe?" streets of South Central. Filled with great skateboarding footage from its cast of unknowns, and a krazy soundtrack full of Hardcore zingers, this is one odd, quirky, nutty little Punk odyssey that is a trip worth taking. I love the soundtrack. I listen to it quite often. I wanna fall in with my own gang of krazy skatepunkerz...

The trailer...

There you have it. Ten lean, mean, Punk Rawk machinez...

I enjoy them very much.

"No Future" never looked so awesome on film... OI!!!

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Music is My Life!!! - 25 Songs That "Made" Me...

Obviously, music didn't "make" me in some underground lab (I wish...), but I feel this very strong connection to it. Sometimes it speaks for me when I can't, don't want to, or don't need to. This has been this way ever since I was very young. I remember being 12 or 13, and identifying with music from such bands as Nirvana, Stone Temple Pilots, Pearl Jam, etc. And ever since those early teen years, there have been a number of songs that have changed my life and "made" me the person I am today. In order to "make yourself," one must go through many things, like pain, heartache, sadness, despair, hate, rage, and many other emotions. Listed below are 25 songs that were there for me when I went through these things, and helped me out, and well, made me...

This list is in chronological order... from my teen years all the way up to now, this 26th year of my life...

1. "Lady Picture Show" by Stone Temple Pilots

One of the first bands I really got into was STP. This band later got me into the "Grunge movement" (Nirvana, Pearl Jam, Soundgarden...) of the 90s, and this particular song reminds me of my very first girlfriend. I met her, we talked on the phone a lot, but it didn't work out very well because she was from Chicago, and the whole "long-distance" thing didn't work out. She liked a lot of the same music as I did, especially this song, which was a hit at the time...

It had this sadness to it. I listened to it for quite a bit after the break-up.

2. "Danny Says" by The Ramones

During my early high school years, I was in love with The Ramones!! I was like Riff Randle, but, you know... a dude. I wore their shirts, I rocked some Converse, and listened to them constantly!! At one point I had this one girlfriend who I went out with on and off for a few years. I remember telling her how "I Want You Around" reminded me of her. She kinda laughed it off. She wasn't really a big Ramones fan. One time, though, I read her the lyrics to "Danny Says." I remember she liked it, which made me feel good. The song itself is about being on the road, and wanting to be back home with that "special someone." Listening to the song now, it reminds me of high school. Plus, the song is awesome...

3. "Sub-Mission" by The Sex Pistols

I love this song. I love how in-your-face and ominous it is. Well, they were the Sex Pistols. This song feels like a weird love song that some bleeding, heroin-addicted, "No Future" punker would write for a special lady. I remember asking out this one girl while this song was playing in my car. She was not exactly a punker, but she was a constant in my life for many years, and I guess you can say we "met" to this song. So I guess this is a love song, but it's also an anti-love song.

4. "(Don't Fear) The Reaper" by Blue Oyster Cult

My all-time favorite song by BOC, this particular song seems like a "death song," but it took me a while to figure out that it was a love song. When I was with this girl mentioned above, this was our unofficial "song," which made me happy, because I was glad it wasn't a lame-o country song or some Britney Spears shit. I'm still fond of this song, but I don't listen to it as much as I used to... but BOC still rulezz!!!

5. "Unsatisfied" by The Replacements

Man, too bad I didn't have a classic album like "Let It Be" to get me through my high school years!! Consequently, it wasn't until the Summer of 2003 (a few months AFTER I graduated) that I finally got the album, and loved it... The song I identified with the most was "Unsatisfied." That song really spoke to me. It was as if Paul Westerberg poured his soul out and transferred it into me!! I felt everything from that song. It still hits me, even today. Pure poetic angst...

6. "Nothin' For You" by TSOL

*Sigh* Another song I really feel "angsty" about... At one point in time I was really into the classic 1985 zombie flick "Return of the Living Dead" and its awesome soundtrack. Years ago, I didn't think too much about some of the lyrics, but in recent years the song definitely resonates, particularly this line:
"Am I still 24? Or am I starting to grow ol-ol-old!!!"

Eventually I did turn 24...
The tragedy of this story? I'm 26...

7. "House of Pain" by Faster Pussycat

For some reason, I always used to think that this song was merely a great 80s power ballad break-up song. I listened to it a lot following the break-up of a very long relationship. Little did I know that the song was basically a "I hate you, Dad!" anthem... much like "Cat's in the Cradle" was in that same respect. It's still a damn good song to brood to...

And, hey, I hate my dad...

8. "Still Loving You" by Scorpions

Another 80s power ballad that actually IS a break-up song!! I listened to this song heavily after said break-up. It is so epic and powerful. But, now I just think of it as a totally awesome song...

9. "Disorder" by Joy Division

The powerful, haunting opening track from their landmark album "Unknown Pleasures," this song is pure mood, doom, gloom, and beauty. I feel this song at my core. It was a very cathartic song to listen to after the aforementioned break-up. Joy Division's music really works. I only listen to them when I get seriously depressed.

10. "Hope" by Bauhaus

Another "Doom & Gloom" band, Bauhaus, the "Godfathers of Goth," ended their classic album "Burning From the Inside" on a pretty positive note with this song. Pure melodic, beautiful noise, the melodies were accompanied by these lyrics chanted over and over again:
"'Cause your mornings will be brighter, Break the line... Tear up rules... Make the most of a million times, no..."

A very beautiful... and yes, hopeful song...

11. "Living in Darkness" by Agent Orange

A nearly 5-minute long cascade into "dark punk," I totally identified with this song. Lyrics:

"I feel safe just being alone... Living in darkness, living in a world of my own..."

Need I say more??

12. "Reptile" by The Church

At one point in my life, I saw the video to this song on late-night TV. I forgot about it, but then I remembered hearing it at my workplace once. I HAD to find out who played the song!! Eventually I discovered The Church, and came across this classic song. A spiteful tirade against a former love, this song definitely spoke to me at the time of the aforementioned break-up.

13. "Prelude to Agony" by Type O Negative

After a break-up, one doesn't have to listen to melancholy songs ALL the time!! A little bit of Hardcore goes a long way. This 12-minute plus hate anthem of epic proportions, this classic Type O tune illustrates a graphic "payback" of a vengeful lover against his cheating ex. This song had it all: The Agony, The Ecstasy... and of course, the JACKHAMMERAPE!!!

This song was fucked-up... but also therapeutic.

14. "Everything Counts" by Depeche Mode

This song reminds me of my Aunt who passed away recently. She never listened to this band, but her daughter (my cousin) did. I think there's this great connection for me to this song and the two of them. I'll forever be reminded of them when I listen to this moody classic...

15. "Here Comes the Sun" by The Beatles

This was my late Aunt's all-time favorite band. And this was one of her favorite songs by them. It's a beautiful, majestic journey of a song, and I hope this is all she hears in Heaven...

16. "Jesus Doesn't Want Me For a Sunbeam" by The Vaselines

A haunting version of the classic Bible song, this cover by The Vaselines is full of melancholy and sadness. This is another song that reminds me of my late Aunt...

17. "I Want the Angel" by Jim Carroll Band

Punk's greatest poet, Jim Carroll went nice and melodic with this song, which features a piano. The poetry was amazing, Carroll's delivery was intense, and the band was never better. This is another song that reminds me of my late Aunt. She was The Angel...

18. "You Can't Put Your Arms 'Round a Memory" by Johnny Thunders

This song is everything. It is love. It is hate. It is pain. It is loss. It is heartbreak. It is loneliness...

It will be played at my funeral...

19. "I Must Not Think Bad Thoughts" by X

This song had a definite message behind it. Every time I listen to it, I'm under its influence. Powerful, powerful song...

20. "What a Wonderful World" by Ministry

This amped-up, freakout cover of the Louis Armstrong classic manages to be a beautiful disasterpiece!! This song has the Power, the Passion, and it's balls-to-the-wall...

21. "Lonely Planet Boy" by New York Dolls

I "feel" like the lonely planet boy in this song... Featuring a brilliant saxophone performance, David Johansen's mourning vocals, and the guitar masterwork of Johnny Thunders, I will forever identify myself with this song...

22. "Endless Rain" by X Japan

This epic, searing masterpiece of 80s metal awesomeness, this track comes courtesy of X Japan, who are basically the Guns 'N Roses of Asia. This song has the ability to make me feel sad, yet hopeful at the same time...

23. "Amerarockers" by Scream

Most of these songs are "Bummer Songs" (which says a lot about my life...), but anyway, this song makes me feel great. When I'm sad, angry, depressed, etc., this song always puts a grin on my face. It is that great...

24. "Don't Change" by INXS

This song is all about angst... It also has this great message about not changing for anybody... I'm in love with this song. It also reminds me of a cousin of mine who tragically died a young teenager recently. RIP Jeremy...

25. "Promises" by Fugazi

This song is brutal and uncompromising. It's all about how words can be used for or against somebody. There's a great power and urgency about this song. And I most definitely relate to it right now. Ian MacKaye bled through this song...

There you have it. 25 songs that really define "me." Of course, there are many others, but these 25 pretty much sums "me" up...

And, as Chop-Top so succinctly puts it,
"Music is My Life!!!"

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Music is My Life!!! - T.S.O.L. Vs. TSOL

I love Punk Rock music... this is fact. In loving said music, I have been exposed to countless, countless different punk rock groups. There's the proto-punkers (MC5, Stooges, Velvet Underground...), garage rockers (Standells, Electric Prunes, 13th Floor Elevators...), the fore-bearers (The Who, The Kinks, etc.), the fire-starters (New York Dolls, Dictators, Dead Boys), the LEGENDS (Ramones, Sex Pistols, The Clash), the post-punkers (Joy Division, Raincoats, Gang of Four), the Hardcore mo-fos (Bad Brains, Minor Threat, Black Flag...), the college rock punkers (Replacements, Husker Du, Sonic Youth), the Grunge Rock Gods (Nirvana, Alice in Chains, Pearl Jam...), the 90s revivalists (Green Day, Rancid, The Offspring), and the New Sound for the modern age (The Hives, The Strokes, The White Stripes...)!! There's many, MANY more genres to examine, but those were the main ones I was exposed to. And from being exposed to them, they exposed me to other great bands like X, The Germs, The Runaways, Buzzcocks, Misfits, Agent Orange, Bad Religion, Plasmatics, Fugazi, Dinosaur Jr., The Faith, Void, Scream, Government Issue, Flipper, Big Black, Mission of Burma... there are still countless others...

One of my favorite bands, however, is T.S.O.L., which stands for True Sounds of Liberty. Hailing from Long Beach, California, T.S.O.L. formed in 1979, during the so-called "decline" of the Punk Movement. However, the Hardcore movement was developing on the East and West coasts, and T.S.O.L. were very much a part of it. Beginning with such L.A. bands like The Germs, The Weirdos, Middle Class, Black Flag, Circle Jerks, and Fear, T.S.O.L. first started in the Hardcore scene. In 1981, the group released their first self-titled EP, and released their "Weathered Statues" EP a year later. The EPs contained such classics as "Superficial Love," "World War III," "Man and Machine," "Weathered Statues," and the landmark Politicopunk smasher "Abolish Government/Silent Majority"...

In 1981, the band released their undisputed masterpiece.... "Dance With Me."

A masterwork melding of Hardcore rock and gothic ambiance, the songs are now classics. Dark, powerful, energetic songs like "Sounds of Laughter," "Code Blue," "Love Story," "80 Times," "I'm Tired of Life," "Silent Scream," and the moody, death and doomy title track are all essentials to any punk fans ears.

Their best song...

In 1982, the band marginalized fans, but developed an interesting synth sound for their next record, "Beneath the Shadows." Known as their full name True Sounds of Liberty, this album was quite a departure from their earlier sound. While one of their signature songs "Code Blue" from their previous album was about necrophilia, not to mention that their "Love Song" was almost an anti-love song, most of the songs on "Beneath the Shadows" were about love...

From powerful break-up songs (the beautiful title track and "Wash Away), to more uptempo songs about love ("Send My Thoughts," "She'll Be Saying"...), to songs about isolation ("Walk Alone," "Other Side"...), to the wonderful piano-based opening tune "Soft Focus," these songs had power, passion, despair, longing, and beauty. I loved this album. The Hardcore-lovers not so much, but screw the haters. This is good stuff...

The band went through many changes after this album's release. Amidst turmoil within the group, lead singer, (the incomparable) Jack Grisham and drummer Todd Barnes left the band, splitting the group. They emerged in 1984 with new drummer Mitch Dean and new singer Joe Wood, alongside original members, guitarist Ron Emory and bassist Mike Roche. That year they released Change Today?, which was a difference in sound and style courtesy of the bluesy lead singer.

This is where the conflict arises. I am very much a fan of both versions of T.S.O.L., but my ultimate allegiance lies with the original line-up known as True Sounds of Liberty. The Joe Wood years (most of the eighties) were interesting, in which the band was basically referred to as TSOL with no periods. This reformed band released two great albums, the aforementioned "Change Today?" and their classic, 1986's "Revenge."

Here is a rare video for their classic, bluesy, dark anthem "Colors (Take Me Away)"

The "Revenge" album also gained some notoriety for having their song "Nothin' For You" featured in the immortal 1985 zombie classic "Return of the Living Dead."

This album retained a hard rock punk edge, yet was also gloomy, bluesy, and melodic. Songs like "Colors," "No Time," "Madhouse," and "Memories" actually "speak" to me. It's a great album to reflect to... It's a definite favorite of mine, but I still prefer the Jack Grisham era...

The band went on to release 1987's "Hit and Run," which was a hair metal album that shied away from everything the band was. I don't care if you became friends with Guns 'N Roses, TSOL!! You can still retain your awesome goth-punk edge!!

Another album was released in 1990 called "Strange Love," which received minimal attention. At this point, no original band member was involved, and Joe Wood was able to use the TSOL name. Many compilations and one memorable live album later, the original line-up decided to get back together...

Sadly, they had to do it without original drummer Todd Barnes, who died of a brain aneurysm at age 34.

They reunited, started touring on the Warped Tour circuit and released albums "Disappear" in 2001 and "Divided We Stand" in 2003. These albums signified a powerful, defiant return to form, especially "Disappear." All of the songs on "Disappear" are fast-paced, in-your-face punkers, and the album is a classic in its own right.

Songs like "Wasted," "Renounce," "Sodomy," "Crybaby," "Automatic," the title track, and the stand-out "Pyro" are indeed as relevant as their classic releases back in the early 80s...

The band continues to grow strong, Jack Grisham is still one of my idols, and they even decided to give away their music for free as a download in the form of their 2009 release, "Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Free Downloads."

I continue to listen to their music, and still retain my favor over Jack fucking Grisham. T.S.O.L., much like The Clash, Minor Threat, and Bad Brains, is a band that really "matters." I will love them 'till I die... maybe even after....

I leave you with this classic scene from "Suburbia"...

And, this memorable cover of Lou Reed's classic...

And, as Chop-Top so succinctly puts it,
"Music is My Life!!!"