In which I overuse THE HORROR

I don’t always read gig reviews, but when I do, I make sure you know about it. 

Not that’s it’s a conscious choice; there usually aren’t any gig reviews I’d be interested in reading. That, or I’m just terrible at finding them.

However. Pinterest is sometimes helpful.

HELLO. Review of the Amity Affliction/Northlane/Stray from the Path/Wage War gig in Glasgow in 2016? I saw them when the tour made a stop in Stockholm, let’s see what Scotland made of it, clickety-click!

Aaaand..it’s a let down. Apparently, the purpose of the review is to demonstrate what a man the writer is.

Like when he comments on the general appearance of Northlane. Singer especially.

[T]heir vocalist Marcus Bridge still looks like Booky Wook author Russell Brand and their music, sadly, is still too niche for me to become an avid fan.

Interpretation: Marcus is too pretty, it will attract the girls. THE HORROR. Metal logic dictates liked by the girls > not heavy enough > if you do like it DON’T ADMIT TO IT. It will make you look like less of a man. That writer guy doesn’t understand why Northlane, third on the bill, gets the biggest audience reaction thus far, is hardly surprising. If you consider what the writer aims to do, failure to understand Northlane’s greatness is expected, but if you’re into the metal made these days, it’s entirely confusing.

As for their music is too niche, isn’t that like saying I only like music that appeals to a great mass of people? Oooorrrrr…? I don’t know why anyone would say that.

And don’t even get me started on the fact that it’s not as if you’d confuse Marcus and Russell Brand.

📸 @moki_mooose

Ett inlägg delat av Northlane (@northlane)

However. I’m not opposed to reviewing the appearance of the band. I think it would benefit gender equality. Women in music are already heavily judged by appearance, why should men in metal bands be any exception?

Specifically. I DO want a review of Wage War’s appearance and style.

I am serious. I need something to work with! The music isn’t doing it for me.

As in, I might, at one point, have been looking for something to throw at them. Not necessarily because they were bad. They just weren’t any fun. Not quite worth sacrificing my NYX Liquid Suede for though.

There’s this interview I keep thinking of. Guy in metal band complained people in bands weren’t allowed to be non-pretty anymore. WHAT BANDS ARE YOU EVEN TALKING ABOUT??? Kennt nicht! To me, they all look more or less like Wage War. Pretty or any synonym of the word isn’t exactly appropriate as description, is it?

And besides. What you choose to wear always sends a message. Clothes communicate. You can try and pretend it doesn’t all you want, changes nothing. May as well talk about it. Wage War; clearly not trying to challenge the prevailing world order. But then, this is metal and it’s a very conservative genre, as pointed out by Simon Reynolds and Joy Press in The Sex Revolts decades ago. Which, by the way, you really should give a read if you haven’t already.

Especially if you feel the urge to write things like this:

When The Amity Affliction finally take to the stage just before 9pm there’s a notable change in the atmosphere. … it was more a case of screaming ladies taking over the noise department and for a second I wondered if I’d been teleported to a gig hosted by the anti-christ himself, Justin Bieber.

Oh no. The few girls in attendance made their presence known. THE HORROR. Clearly, we don’t belong at metal gigs, as it needs to be commented on. Clearly, we should stick with Justin Bieber—and I’m assuming he is the antichrist because girls like him. That which girls like=evil.

Meanwhile.

Slightly surprised these guys get away with not a word about appearance. But then he’s already established they’re the girls’ faves, followed up with a final comment on how this gig was the least sweaty and bruised he’d ever been at a gig, therefore he would be unlikely to go again, i.e. Amity Affliction failed to make him feel like a man, which is obviously was this poor bloke uses metal for.

Thank you Stockholm. 📷 @xpeesx #tcbhworldtour

A post shared by The Amity Affliction (@theamityaffliction) on

I’m also confused as to why this is included:

Whilst both [Amity Affliction and Northlane] are considered metal they do have differences in their styles which I will do my best to explain.

Yesss. That’s what we need the review to do, explain the difference between Amity and Northlane. Not as if we could find that out for ourselves by, say, using Spotify? And also, why are Wage War and Stray excluded? I mean they’re all different types of metal. No explanation there??

There never is an explanation though. Unless you count labeling Northlane too niche as an explanation, or the writer’s personal opinion that Amity’s mix of melodic and heavy, well, doesn’t actually mix.

As if there is a contradiction between melodic and metal.

I suppose melodic makes for an easy listen, whereas heavy does not. Melodic music for women, heavy music for men, and thusly don’t mix? That is the reasoning behind it, right?

Obviously the idea that there’s a contradiction is simply inaccurate. Heavy + melodic = BEST MIX /fact.

…even if how to measure the level of heaviness certainly can be discussed. Anyone invent a heavyometer lately? No?

It is clear already from the start that Mr Reviewer Guy prefers the first two bands on the bill, Wage War and Stray from the Path.

Bolstering this tour are two mighty bands from the United States.

(Does my incorrect use of block quotes bother anyone? No?! What about these brackets!?)

This use of mighty. I just don’t approve. Moving on

Despite not being the headliner, SFTP take the title for best band that evening in my opinion.

What’s with the despite? Pretty sure it’s allowed to prefer an opening act to the headliner. Even if the reason is because they don’t make you worry you’ re compromising your manliness.

That being said, despite not being a Stay fan, they do put on a good show. I would repurchase, even if they’re not exactly in my playlist. (Tho the new single is v. v. catchy).

Also. I DO want to talk about is this look:

Berlin tonight

A post shared by Stray From The Path (@strayfromthepath) on

Well that or, the short speech Mr Singer Guy did in Stockholm; he pointed out that the show was for everyone and don’t fucking harass the girls, and if you see someone doing that let them know that’s not OK. (I’m paraphrasing, he said something to that effect, my brain was all Hey! That’s vaguely feminist! put him in the feminist compartment and moved on with its life. My criteria for the feminist label for men in metal are extremely low.)

OK then. I think I’ve demonstrated why gig reviews probably aren’t something I should be reading, even if I’m able to find them. Throws me straight into rant mode it does.

Not that I hate rant mode. Just don’t think other people are that wild about it.

On my wish list

I just got tickets to see Architects in June, so this year is saved, but it’d be kinda neat if the following could be arsed to come around these parts:

Northlane. Saw them last year when they opened for Amity Affliction. Needless to say, they were brilliant. And they just released a new album this morning, so it shouldn’t be completely impossible??

Casey. Again. Saw last year, was quite impressed. Because they’re quite active on social media they’re always on my mind. This social media thing, it truly is brilliant PR, they don’t even have to talk about their music, just make sure we keep thinking about them. Maybe Brighton this time?

Russell Brand. Yea, yea, he’s not a musician, but he is touring. Been before and it was lots of fun. But it was also Glasgow. No type gig sucks in Glasgow. Exception confirming the rule: Proclaimers.

Glasvegas. But to be fair, I’d settle for a record release date. Or you know, some news? Anything?

Editors. I have no excuse and am probably sick in the head. Just not a festival.

HIM. I love HIM but never been to see HIM, that’s just wrong. They’ll be touring this year and from the looks of it they’re going just about everywhere except here. And to Glasgow in December. That is where I draw the line. One cannot be going to Glasgow in December. Also it’s sold out so that’s one thing I don’t even have to consider…

Nine Inch Nails. I hear they’ve booked a couple of dates in the US. Is it too much to ask they also swing by Europe? I could expand “these parts” to include Berlin. For NIN anyway. Actually…Berlin’s current gig selection is looking pretty good already. So maybe Berlin regardless?

Was thinking that I’d just not go anywhere at all this year, to save money for wallpaper and such. But I am so easily distracted. Who needs wallpaper when I could go to Oslo to see Architects? I mean twice in a year, that’s…also not enough?

Greed. Such greed.

December favorites

Music

Let’s have a peek at what last.fm says.

last.fm stats

Good thing I have last.fm. Not only for the scrobbling, but because at least I can get my end of year listening stats as Spotify completely failed this year. Not sending out the email because you’ve selected no newsletters or some shit? Well I hadn’t selected no newsletters; you still send me irrelevant emails, and I still didn’t get my stats.

I’m an insanely frequent user + been with you since you needed an invite to use. I’m insulted.

That being said. I’m clearly stuck in some sort of a rut. It is questionable whether I am aware that there are many records and many songs in this world.

Reads

Odinsbarn. I think we’ve established I enjoyed it.

Wearables

New parka. Has -the best- pockets. This is a feature that should not be underestimated!

I’ve gotten a lot of wear out of my Sleek Vintage Romance palette. Obvious; it is the season of metallics and glitter.

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On the screen

Vlogmas is better still than Vlogtober. All of my faves providing daily vlogs, love it! Difficult to pick a fave, so I’m going with a non-vlogmas episode, because this look ♥♥♥

And, finally! Been looking for this literally months:

Starting to wonder if I’m ever going to kick this nasty Architects habit.

Food

All things saffron! But saffron granola + saffron scones were my faves.

Miscellaneous

Car. I has it, it is good….most of the time.

The gym. The 16.30 workouts on Monday and Thursday were my faves. Unfortunately they are no more; as we’re approaching Christmas there’s a temporary Christmas schedule and then we move on to a new schedule. Fingers crossed someone is adding Throne to their class!

Lush hair treatments. I’d forgotten how good Lush hair treatments are. Love it that you put them in dry hair BEFORE shower. This makes life infinitely easier.

Amity + Northlane at Fryshuset, obviously.

I need Northlane to do a headliner tour around these parts. (I use the term these parts loosely; UK would work, Germany ditto, maybe France, but that’s as far as I’ll go.)

Plans for January

  1. Get a head start on my reading.
  2. Get new gym membership.
  3. Change blog layout. It’s definitely time.

xo,

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November favorites

Music

It’s been out for a while, but I was suddenly struck by just how great Adna’s Overthinking is.

Fave song live was without a doubt Bring Me the Horizon’s Avalanche. I’ve always liked the song well enough, but live it just hit me.

Became slightly obsessed with a few Little Jinder tracks, as a result of watching Så mycket bättre, like the rest of Sweden. Here’s Super 8:

So looking forward to an entire week of her on this year’s edition of Musikhjälpen. Love her punk rock attitude, it’s going to be so much fun.

Books

For a while there, I was starting to despair. A) Didn’t read an awful lot, B) the ones did read were a bit meh. In addition to which they didn’t fit my challenge. I didn’t even like Ravencliffe.

Texts from Jane Eyre was definitely a fave tho (even if, technically, I did finish it 31 October, but whatever).

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Almost starting to think I need to read Atlas Shrugged, I mean, all evidence suggests it’s kinda funny?

But then I ended the month by reading Estrid by Johanne Hildrebrandt and it was not only good; it was everything I wanted it to be. Still impressed with Johanne’s way with words, how she balances our everyday way of expression with a few well selected words we associate with the old days. It reads so well. And she knows how to draw the reader in. Bonus points for most characters being petty, greedy, just awful people. As in the majority of all characters. Love that.

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Wearables

Big chunky knits were definitely a theme. Also been reaching for jeans (black! the horror that you would think I’d wear denim) way more than I have for ages. Actually don’t think I’ve worn an actual dress/skirt even once. Unless you count oversized knits as dresses.

A pair of Vagabond boots I got on sale (half price, such a find), I just want to live in them. Comfortable + goes with everything. I really want a back-up pair, that is how comfortable they are.

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In terms of makeup, I’ve been obsessed with no-brow, no-liner looks. Quick + easy! Bonus points for making you look creepy.

Social Media

Russell Brand’s Trews!

Also. Bumble on Instagram. I have no idea how I ended up there, but how I love it.

It’s feminism, being introvert, and just not being perfect and sharing it. Just ♥♥♥

Suddenly became completely obsessed with Sarah Hawkinson; been watching for a while, but I’ve started going back and watching v. v. old vids. Not so old vid:

Meanwhile. Where do you go for YouTube recommendations? What YouTube recommends me is just not good enough.

DanArchitects. I’m sure he’s a great drummer and all, but I’m far more impressed with his Twitter skills. I only wish all musicians I followed were this funny, sarcastic, informative. A fave tweet from this month:

(I don’t see why not, most of us seem to deserve it?)

Food

I just have one food related thing on my mind: Glasgow’s Stereo. Visited 3 times the week I was in Glasgow – it was that good. Special mention: their buffalo cauliflower + sun dried tomato, rosemary & chili polenta chips. A-mazing. Combine it with a glass of Sauvignon blanc and it’s just heaven.

And new fave drink Dark & Stormy: ginger beer + rum. Ah ginger. I could marry it.

Series/movies

Finally watched Before the Flood. If like me you’ve been putting it off, there’s really no need. It’s an easy watch despite the serious subject. It made me feel as if we’re in the middle of a the world is flat type discussion.

Bonus: TRez + Atticus Ross made a beautiful soundtrack to it.

Gilmore Girls. Happier about the fact that it was back than the actual content tho. Not that it was bad. Except for that musical thing which which I’m quite upset about. You’ve got 4 episodes and you spend 15 minutes on a terrible musical? WHYYY?

Historieätarna. Has been ZERO PERCENT disappointing. Let’s not think about the fact that this is the last season. It will be missed.

Miscellaneous

Last time I mention my trip to Glasgow, promise! Even rainy days in Glasgow are better than Sweden in November. This is from when we walked along Clyde.

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Blow out I got at Belle & Blackley in Glasgow. While I’m not convinced I should have layers or a Brenda (90210 obvs) type fringe, the blow out was the best I ever did have. I only wish I could be bothered to do it myself.

Architects at ABC; I may have loved Bring Me’s Avalanche a ridiculous amount, and the show was so great – hell I went back for seconds on the 25th in Stockholm – but nothing compares to Architects. Am I considering going to America for more next year? Kinda. A little bit. With any luck the whole tour will be sold out before I do something stupid.

Plans for December

  1. See Jonathan Johansson play
  2. See Amity Affliction + Northlane play
  3. Work all alone in the office because I’m all out of vacay.

xo,

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October favorites

I’m swapping my weekly summaries for the classic monthly favorites. Becuse time, time is currently an issue. Anyway. Here we go!

Music

I’m still enjoying Architects, Amity Affliction and Bring Me more than what seems reasonable. But I’ve also been loving Northlane’s Node and EditorsIn Dream.

The new Roddy Hart & the Lonesome Fire track Violet is everything you’d want from Roddy.

New faves tho; Novelists. Hopefully I’ll love them for longer than a week.

Books

Clothes + makeup

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I love combining red and pink. Since dying my hair a reddish type shade I’ve been loving wearing the pink shades in the Makeup Revolution Chocolate Vice palette and just anything pink.

And knits! The necessity to survive this month. And what I needed to get back to loving the cooler weather; should have started wearing the knits sooner.

Other faves: the NYX Lingerie Beauty Mark + NYX blush in Coraline

Social media

Ah yes, the month of Vlogtober. I already mentioned it, but I have been enjoying Leila Buffery’s vlogs.

Food

Vigårda; my new fave eatery in Stockholm: vegan burger + sweet potato fries. Bonus points for their white wine, a lovely Sauvignon blanc for a mere SEK 55  (basically a steal for being Sweden), and let’s not forget about the lovely elderflower + gin drink for the same price. Again; cheap. And good!

This bar, it’s what got me through my Sthlm + Gbg weekend.

raw bite peanut

Can’t quite figure why it has no vegan stamp of approval. Am I not reading it right?

Series/movies

I’m currently watching YouTube only. But, while on the topic, since the release of this Gilmore Girls trailer I’m looking forward to the new season really a lot:

Question: I did watch a movie or two. Nothing worth mentioning, except for, I finally caved and watched Fault in Our Stars because I wanted to see something sad. …didn’t exactly think it was sad. At all. Just really awful. There was literally nothing about it that I did like. Maybe that’s just me.

Miscellaneous

Can I mention Architects again? Yes I can! Probably my favorite thing of all the things this month; Architects live.

Plans for November

  1. Go to Glasgow; have lots of fun.
  2. Go to Stockholm; see Bring Me the Horizon.
  3. Dye my hair redder still.

xo,

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100 day song challenge #40

#40 A song with “Q” as the first letter of the title

I thought I was going to have to resort to Roxette’s Queen of Rain – don’t get me wrong. I really did love this song at one point.

But. Going with a song where the first word is queen for this category feels so obvious, and in addition a song I haven’t been listening to for, 25 years? It feels wrong.

Then I remembered I’m seeing Northlane in December. Northlane‘s got a song called Quantum Flux. It’s a proper good song.

xo,

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