Wednesday, February 11, 2009 is Evil (Not Really)

This is Thursday's post... Somehow Blogger messed up the post dates...

Review Note: Afro Samurai is now officially posted! You can read the review HERE
. Go ahead and read it... I'll wait. Next up is Onechanbara: Bikini Samurai Squad. My 11th review will be blood, zombies, and scantily clad babes... I can't wait. As I said in THIS POST, it's destined to be the Game of the Year =P.

For those of you who haven't heard of it, is a site where you can go to listen to music for free. You enter the name of an artist or some you like, and Pandora will start playing songs similar to that song/artist. The whole point of it is to help you find other groups you might like, and of course listen to some free music.

I've been listening to Pandora a ton while working on my sociology research. Of course, Pandora has a evil side... It chooses what you listen to, and you can only skip so many songs per hour. And, after hearing a few songs you like, it's really hard not to run out and spend a billion dollars on new music. Well, for the first time in a while, Pandora (and the Nightwish channel) have made me cave in, and some new additions have been made to my library. I download everything legally from Amazon MP3. It's legal, cheaper than CDs, and the gratification is instant. The music goes right to my Windows Media Player library.

With the GSL coming, its inevitable that I'll be playing some crappy games, and wanting some music to listen to, so having some new stuff's not a bad idea.

Most of this music is still incredibly new to me, so instead of trying to explain it myself, I'm stealing info from Pandora itself, so credit goes to that site. (My bro is going to love reading some of these bios) I purchased:

Vinland Saga (Leaves' Eyes)
Leaves' Eyes
Gothic metal band Leaves' Eyes was born out of the romantic relationship between singer Liv Kristine Espenæs and guitarist Alexander Krull, who met whilst she was fronting Norway's Theatre of Tragedy and he Germany's Atrocity. The pair eventually married and announced their musical union in 2003, with Espenæs quitting Theatre of Tragedy to join Krull and the rest of Atrocity's lineup (guitarists Thorsten Bauer and Mathias Roderer, bassist Christian Lukhaup, and drummer Nick Barker) to found Leaves' Eyes and record their 2004 debut album, Lovelorn. Along with its next-year successor, Vinland Saga, the record confirmed the new group's affinity for theatrical, symphonic goth-metal, as the leading couple living out the ‘beauty and the beast' vocal roles. ~ Eduardo Rivadavia, All Music Guide

Amplified- A Decade of Reinventing the Cello (Apocalyptica)
The Helsinki, Finland, quartet Apocalyptica comprised classically trained cellists Eicca Toppinen, Max Lilja, Antero Manninen, and Paavo Lotjonen; formed in 1993, the group made waves internationally in 1996 with Plays Metallica by Four Cellos, which combined their formal background with their love of heavy metal. The album found favor with both classical buffs and metal heads alike, and two years later Apocalyptica resurfaced with Inquisition Symphony, which featured covers of material by Faith No More and Pantera. Manninen soon left the band and was replaced by Perttu Kivilaanso. They added double bass and percussion to the mix for 2001's Cult, a collection of all-original material, and again on 2003's Reflections which featured guest drummer Dave Lombardo from Slayer. Max Lilja had left the band and Mikko Sirén joined as the band's permanent drummer. After Reflections was reissued as Reflections Revised, featuring a bonus track with new wave diva Nina Hagen, 2005 saw the release of the eponymous Apocalyptica, followed in 2006 by the collection Amplified: A Decade of Reinventing the Cello. The band returned to the studio the following year for Worlds Collide. Rammstein vocalist Till Lindemann appeared on the album performing the German-language version of David Bowie's "Helden." ~ Jason Ankeny, All Music Guide

Bloodangel's Cry (Krypteria)
Formed in the early years of the 21st century by guitarist Chris Siemons, bassist Frank Stumvoll, and drummer S.C. Kuschnerus, Krypteria were originally formed as a musical theater studio project with a selection of rotating vocalists. One of these singers was Ji-In Cho, who added her part to the track "Liberatio" on 2003's Krypteria. When the song was chosen by a German television station to be included in a benefit for hurricane victims, the trio decided to add Cho as a permanent member of the band. Their debut full-length as a four-piece, In Medias Res, came out in 2005, followed by heavy touring and the release of Bloodangel's Cry two years later. ~ Marisa Brown, All Music Guide

Nine Destinies and a Downfall (Sirenia)
Somehow, leading Norway's Tristania to the top of the goth metal heap wasn't enough for vocalist/guitarist Morten Veland, who unilaterally seceded from the union in the year 2000 to found a brand-spanking-new though similar-sounding band named Sirenia. Picking up pretty much where he'd left off stylistically, Veland hand-picked compatriots Kristian Gundersen (clean vocals, guitar), Hans Henrik Varland (keyboards), and French singer Fabienne Gondamin to quickly perform on the following year's At Sixes and Sevens debut. He and Gundersen then found a more permanent support staff in vocalist Henriette Bordvik and drummer Jonathan Perez to work on their 2003 follow-up, An Elixir for Existence. An EP, Sirenian Shores arrived in 2005, followed by the full-length Nine Destinies and a Downfall in 2007. ~ Ed Rivadavia, All Music Guide

Thank you Pandora. My wallet is $40 lighter, and I'll be rocking out for a while now. So far, I've been digesting mostly Sirenia and Leaves' Eyes, but the other two albums will get some love too. I really love Vinland Saga... it's kinda "laid back" metal, if that makes any sense. It's rocking enough to keep me interested, while gentle enough that I can listen to it while focusing on homework. A couple of the Sirenia tracks might make their way into my custom playlist for FPS games... This is some good stuff.


  1. Apocalyptica, not bad. Their little cameo on the new Amon Amarth album was sweet. (Amon Amarth play viking themed melodic death, without Gothenburg influence. Twilight of the Thunder God is in my binder.

    Please please please tell me you didn't wast money on the trash that was Nine Destinies and A Downfall. 1) I played you a cd of theirs before, the actually good one. 2) I have Nine Destinies and A Downfall so you could have just borrowed it....
    Well, I suppose it's ok to like it, but it is just such a departure from their debut, I kinda wanted to shoot myself. Their latest release, the 13th Floor, happily returns to the formula of the first album, At Sixes and Sevens (the good one). Remember when I played that cd for you in the car on the way to valleyfair, and described it as a happy mix of Depeche Mode and Dethklok? Same group.
    Sorry if I sound like a total b**** about this album, I just really have a personal vendetta against it...

    Haven't heard much of Leave's Eyes material, but glad to see you exploring a group that incorporates Growls.

    If you keep listening to the Nightwish channel you may run into Tristania. I have two of their albums if you want to borrow.

    Look into After Forever as well.

    Oh, and, I got the hookups. So if you want some good free and legals just name a sound and I'll do my best.

    Get into the growls dude! There is so much out there you're missing.

    It was a music knew I had to comment. :)

    Happy Listening!

  2. Leaves Eyes don't use growls much, at least not in Vinland Saga. Where they exist, it's at a level I'm OK with.

    I haven't heard much of Sirenia's other stuff, but I happen to like Nine Destinies and a Downfall on its own... didn't know you had a vendetta on it, which is too bad. Maybe it's closer to what we traditionally classify as "my" music versus "your" music... I don't know.

    I'll raid your collection for Tristania when I get the chance. I heard some of their stuff, and it wasn't bad, but I wasn't wowed enough to shell out cash for an album, based on what I heard.

    I knew you would offer opinions on music lol =)

    BTW I want Spain stories dammit!!! =P

  3. How many points to you plan on scoring week 1 of the GSL and how many do you figure you'll get throughout the league? Hopefully you can hit 100k!

  4. Some awesome choices there, including Nine Destinies And A Downfall. I quite like that album but also agree with your brother when compared with their other material. I try not to compare albums though so that is one of the reasons I still like this album too.

    Kudos on Leaves' Eyes as well and of course the ever so awesome Apocalyptica. I also second the recommendations your brother made on Tristania and After Forever.

    This Pandora site though, is that the one that has US access only and is similar to Last.FM? If it is, then I've heard of it before but of course being in Australia means that I can't access it. :(

    Evan, Amon Amarth getting a mention too? My you have some fantastic taste.

    Oh and it was a music post, I too had to comment. ;)

  5. Well, normally I either like an album, don't like it, or somewhere in between. Rarely will I ever have such a vendetta against an album, but...I guess I just viewed ND&ADownfall as a huge step back and or sacrifice of artistic integrity. I get to the 10th cliche layered vocal chorus and I can't, just can't do it any more. The songwriting was way too predictable, blurred together, and some of the vocal melodies hardly sound different at all. Grrr, not going to think about it anymore. At least they somewhat redeemed themselves with their new release...still nowhere near the debut.


    You'll want to check that out. Yes, it's legal.