Posts Tagged ‘Blue Velvet’

state of euphoriaFor this week’s album of the week, I was inspired by the new hit horror film IT which has broken box office numbers when it came to this week’s record. One of the characters in the film is wearing an Anthrax shirt and one of the scenes features the track Antisocial which is off of this week’s album State Of Euphoria which was released on September 19, 1988. The album featured Joey Belladonna (Vocals), Dan Spitz (Lead Guitar), Scott Ian (Rhythm Guitar), Frank Bello (Bass), and Charlie Benante (Drums) and it was produced by Mark Dodson and the band. The album’s back cover is pretty cool because it was designed by famed caricaturist artist and Mad magazine artist Mort Drucker who drew the band. After the release of the album, it peaked at number 30 on the Billboard Top 200 charts and it was certified Gold selling over 500,000 albums even though critics were not warm to the album. A lot of critics felt that the album didn’t live up to the name of the previous albums even though it contained some amazing tracks.

state1.Be All, End All– The song kicks off with cellist Carol Freedman before the band comes in with a monster riff in a track that is all about controlling your own destiny. 4.5/5

2. Out of Sight, Out of Mind– Another in your face track with a monster bass riff from Bello runs this track that is about bands ripping off other bands. 4.5/5

3. Make Me Laugh– an interesting track on the album where the band attacks TV evangelists like Jim and Tammy Fae Bakker who were targets of a lot of thrash bands at the time. 5/5

4. Antisocial– This is the band’s amazing cover of French band Trust’s classic track, but the thing is the band had to do their best to convert the lyrics from French to English to make it work 5/5

5. Who Cares Wins– The track starts very melodic before it gets heavy in this track that is all about the homeless and their struggle to live. 5/5

state-of-euphoria-50008585db5756. Now It’s Dark– The track starts off with someone breathing before Bello and Spitz lead you right in to this track that is about Dennis Hoppers character in David Lynch’s film Blue Velvet. 4.5/5

7. Schism– The drums fade right in as the track kicks off with some punk laden metal riff where the lyrics talk about if you peel all the layers of labels that society has for us, we are all the same. 4/5

8. Misery Loves Company– This is a track the band wrote based on the novel by Stephen King in Misery. 4/5

9. 13– an instrumental track on the album that the band recorded that was an intro to the next track. 4/5

10. Fīnalē– The aptly titled last track on the record and it features some razor sharp riffs with that insane bass playing from Bello in a track that is all about marrying the wrong person. 4/5

My Final Thoughts– I thought that this was a really good record from the band despite what the critics thought at the time. It features some really amazing tracks that are essential to who Anthrax is. Check it out for yourself, I am giving the record 4.45 stars out of five for a final grade.

death wishIn all of the years that I have known about Charles Bronson and his films, I didn’t realize that for a long time he was not a star in the US, but in Europe which kind of surprises me. It wasn’t until the release of Death Wish in 1974 I believe that put Bronson on the map in the US. In this film, Charles Bronson (Once Upon A Time In The West) plays Paul Kersey, one of the top architects in all of New York City. He has everything going for him from a beautiful wife, a loving daughter, and a great job until his world gets severely rocked by tragedy. While grocery shopping, a couple of thugs (one of them is Jeff Goldblum) stalks, rapes, and kills Kersey’s wife and severely traumatizing his daughter. Upset over the fact that nothing has been done to fix the problem, Kersey will take matters into his own hands as he becomes a vigilante and starts cleaning up the streets of New York despite protest from the NYPD. The film also stars Hope Lange (Blue Velvet) as Joanna Kersey, Vincent Gardenia (Little Shop Of Horrors) as Frank Ochoa, Steven Keats (Black Sunday) as Jack Toby, Stuart Margolin (Kelly’s Heroes) as Aimes Jainchill, Jack Wallace (Boogie Nights) as Hank, Robert Kya-Hill (Shafts Big Score!) as Joe Charles, Edward Grover (Serpico) as Lt. Briggs, and the film was directed by Michael Winner (The Sentinel). Before we get into the review of the film, let’s check out some of the stats: 

death wish stats

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

death wish 2There is nothing more I can really say about this film other than that it is a classic. I feel like this film took the vigilante/action sub-genre to a whole new level. The film made him an icon for the next 12 years as more and more sequels would eventually be released. In the film, he only has 11 kills/knockouts and there is no origin story that we know of in this film. As I described above, his wife is his love interest and she is killed and there daughter is in a mental hospital. There is actually no big boss in this film as he doesn’t go after Jeff Goldblum and the other thugs who did the actual crime. Upon the film’s release, critics tried to trash the film because they felt that it was going to corrupt society and how we should handle crimes on our city streets. Even the author whose book inspired the film was pissed off because the film advocated vigilantism and his books didn’t. Nevertheless, the acting in the film was superb, the cinematography was great and gritty at times, and there is nothing I can really complain about. This is one of those films that fans of this genre type should check out if they never have before. For the picture I used for the stats, I thought it was a cool moment in the film when he looks up at the billboard and sees the articles that are talking about him. I thought that was pretty cool symbolism considering he’s going out for one last time. For a final grade, I am going to give the film four fists out of five.