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Journal Entry from Band Days Past

I was going through my notes on my iPhone and found the only journal entry I made at the start of our 5-week tour through Canada/U.S.. I thought it interesting. Enjoy.

“April 12, 2013

“If you want an illustrious career in rock n’ roll, I suggest you think about it…” Greg Dean (on the KMFDM Beat By Beat Tour 1995).

I just want to say about that quote above: Our trip is most likely not as crazy as some bands’, but touring in a band is not like a road trip with your friends or family, and it’s not really like camping except for some things you bring with you. We don’t have a crew, and playing is merely 10% of our job. The rest is lugging/hooking up our gear, driving long hours (and battling the elements), being paranoid about security, taking extra care in maintaining our health, and eating not as wholesome as we’d like.

Day 1 of the Short Circuit Tour (excluding the Toronto show, cause we didn’t actually leave until the following Thursday).. 

Drive was alright. Chals got one of those fancy “GoPro” cameras to document our journey. I swear they use those in the Canada’s Worst Driver tv-show.

Anyways, the 8-hr drive seemed short. The quaint size of Sault Ste. Marie reminded me of certain areas of Regina, and Moose Jaw, SK. It’s bigger than I thought, since the last time we travelled through (at night) back in late-fall 2009.

We get to the venue ’round 5:45pm and eventually meet the promoter. Nice guy. Fed us, bought us drinks. As the night rolls along after soundcheck and we’re playing the “hurry up and wait” game, I’m starting to get super tired. I’ve been up since 4:30am and by 11pm I was ready to crash. I was given an energy drink and after finally playing I gained a second wind.

A nice couple invited us to their house to sleep and shower. I had especially taken advantage of the shower.

Unfortunately the crazy snow storm from southern Ontario had caught up with us, and the next morning had us a little weary. On our way out of the city, a snowy steep hill stopping us from progressing as we halted half way up, and causing us to “jack-knife” the trailer trying to back up DOWN the hill. Chals warned on-coming traffic, as us dudes pushed the fully packed heavy trailer SIDEWAYS to get straight, disconnect from the van, then swing around to aim down the hill, then painstakingly re-attach to the van without getting run over by our own trailer.

After finding an alternate route, we hit up Timmy’s and fill up on gas. Then it’s continuing on the seemingly perilous mid-April winter journey to Thunder Bay.

I hope there’s enough lightning in Thunder Bay to zap this snow into hell.”

“WAIFU” Update

I’m currently getting through writing the track “Piper” as I record it. It’s challenging my guitar playing in a way I never thought possible, and I’m not one to edit the crap out of my guitar lines like most pros do (literally cutting every note and align it with the rhythm). I just can’t be that obsessive with something like that. I’ve listened to too much classic rock lately that I’m much more comfortable with sticking with the best take. I either play it well or I delete it. There’s something more human about it to me, and I don’t have to answer to anyone about it. But, I must say I’m very happy with the direction the track is going (think rockabilly-punk-kinda).

There’s a quote that Walt Disney said, something like “Everyone needs deadlines”. It really puts the pressure on to complete any project. But I’m quite certain I’ll complete this one. I know this is all talk, but if the first two tracks are any indication of how good this record is gonna be…

I really feel like this music is really the start of something for me. A real way to project my imagination.

I’m very excited to get this finished and start my next record idea I got kicking around in my head.

-G

My Thoughts on Final Fantasy XV

I just recently finished Final Fantasy XV and I must say while I take issue with the way the story paces, and takes interesting turns at very odd times (which I blame on the choice of the publisher choosing to make the holes in the story DLC), this is one of the most beautiful games I have ever played.

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The story is about a young prince named Noctis who is on his way with his best friends/bodyguards to meet his bride-to-be Lunafreya. Disaster strikes as his kingdom crumbles after he leaves, and his father dies protecting it. The only choice is to move forward and gain the strength of fallen king spirits who previously ruled the land, and also the support of celestial gods to help reclaim the throne Noctis is rightfully heir to.

The entire world is open to explore, save for a few roadblocks that open after story progressions, and each area is a seamless transition much like exploring any open world game. Except the world map here is much more epic to traverse with your party in a car, and it feels like a great road trip complete with pit stops, in-vehicle conversations, and beautiful vistas.

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Stopped at a resort and took in the sights. So beautiful.

This game is a love letter to fans of Final Fantasy, and the series itself. I couldn’t help but to think that the four main character’s haircuts were odes to characters of series past. The celestial gods (who are ‘summons’ from past games) are beautifully faithful to how they’ve looked previously, and most are massive! The ending of the story suggests The Knights Of The Round (found in FFVII) which I didn’t catch on until twelve, then a thirteenth strike is made on the antagonist.

 

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An eternal friend reveals herself as the goddess Shiva.


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Noctis demands the help from the god Leviathan, which was one of the most epic fight scenes I’ve ever witnessed in a video game.

The main selling point to this game for me was the brotherhood of the main characters, though a little too “bro”, there’s enough dynamic to the characters that it was believable, and I could relate to the ball-busting and teasing they would do to each other. Combine this with the car rides to new destinations, it made me yearn for epic road trips with friends.

The character Prompto, who is one of the four in the party you control, takes random pictures during each day, and you can save your favourites. There’s a certain part of the end of the main story that Noctis requests to take one photo with him to the final confrontation, and that photo is laying in the throne room, and the game uses it a certification of completion of the game. Something I thought was very touching.

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Despite some plot issues (which I blame on being turned into DLC), this is an epic tale, and great modern RPG that I’m sure people will be remembering down the line. Especially long-time Final Fantasy lovers like me.

-G

 

Dear Abby Martin,

This was originally supposed to be a post on my frustration of the whole anti-Muslim thing. My fears and what not. Not with Muslim people, but with people who are trying to convince me that we’re on the verge of war thanks to the “decline of Western Culture”, and to think that compassion for other humans is foolhardy.

Then, last night, I watched your recent Empire Files video on Steve Bannon.

Keep up the good work. I’ve been a fan since your last couple of years on RT. You’re fighting the good fight with great journalism, and I’m grateful! Stay safe out there.

-George

Video

Talking about My Attitude – …Stammering about

Here’s an update my attitude post-The Rabid Whole. I felt compelled to do this one since I was thinking about how sour I sounded at the end of the Part 3 of 3 of Being In A Rock Band video.

More footage of Tearaway Unfolded.

The track “Options” made by myself. Just a ditty I made ages ago, that I don’t see being anything more than it is already.

-G

I love “Tearaway Unfolded” for PS4!

I haven’t been able to stop playing “Tearaway Unfolded” since I downloaded it from the PlayStation Network. It’s free this month for PS-Plus members.

At first glance, I thought this game was going to be a pretentious hipster-game, and with the term “crafting” put in a lot of big titles these days, I thought I would take a pass. Thankfully, it’s definitely not that and so much more!

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My “messenger” whose gone through many changes. You can customize virtually any feature they have using the presets, or draw your own!

 

It’s a platforming adventure game, where the entire world is made of construction paper folded and shaped into familiar things. The basis is that a hole has torn into the sky and ‘scraps’ have invaded infecting the world with dull newsprint. You play as ‘the messenger’ who is controlled by ‘YOU’, and you use your light to fix the world, make tribal people happy, and hypnotize and defeat scraps with the shine of your light.

Along the way you will meet characters what want things added to them, like a crown, moustache, or symbol to display.

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I thought making a simple “V” for a victory badge would suffice…

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…then I placed it on the Warrior Princess Squirrel’s helm.

 

You can take photos at anytime with your familiar selection of filters that you would see on any smartphone app. You can even do animated gifs.

 

Not to mention, you can use the PlayStation app on your phone as a second screen of sorts, take pictures from it, and it will upload to the game and texture the environment with that photo! This is great if you got a friend with you who will mess around with it as you play the game.

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This is just the creative stuff!!!

The game-play alone is really fun, with stages that are game mechanic focused the more skills you learn. Some combine these skills with some neat results, or even just leave it open to you to decide how to approach it.

Also the use of the touch-pad on the PS4 controller has been implemented so well, I think this is the only game that ACTUALLY USES IT outside of just pressing the touch-pad button (at least in any other game I’ve played so far). It’s the primary button where in this game you draw, swipe, press, and flick. So good. So fun.

I don’t see anything wrong in this game that no player would like. You have be a person with no imagination, and a real square to not enjoy this game at all. I haven’t finished the game yet, but I recommend it to any PS4 player.

Is this a review? It is now. 5 cowboy hats out of 5 cowboy hats. Now I’m gonna go and draw a cowboy hat and put it on my messenger…

-G

P.S. When you meet the Gopher who asks you to give him a new look, he’ll ask you to carry him along to his house for a prize at the end of each journey. So far I’ve been unsuccessful as each time I’ve met him he’s fallen to certain doom. I named him Horny Gopher (though his horns look like a moustache where I placed them).

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Talking about Being Creative

Trying to talk about the creative things I’ve done in the past, and what’s to come for the future. If you listen as far as my cat purring at the start of this, I thank you!

Playing “Tearaway” for PS4. Boy, is this a really cute, and fun game!

Song: “Robots! (Sans Robots!)” by RADUTRON
Download here: http://www.radutron.com/music

Artists Sitting Down While Flipping Me The Bird: https://radutron.com/2014/04/06/artists-flipping-me-the-bird-2013/