Restarting blogs: I’m back after a long hiatus! Why…?

October 3, 2010 at 8:33 pm (Musings) (, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , )

still here, but I've remained mainly unseen.

Yes it’s true! I’ve decided to restart posting my thoughts and blogs after many months on the lam. Why? Many reasons, one of them being, that I felt I was being to cryptic & withholding (holding back) my thoughts & opinions on music, life, and the world.

I was hiding out in the social media outlets on the internet (i.e. Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, etc.). I had grown a little embittered that all the hard work into my stories, interviews, reviews, etc., were becoming redundant. Namely, I was putting in way too much effort, for so little in return. I mean, meeting & interviewing artists, improving your websites, social media integration, it’s all gravy in the beginning, but it tends to get “the same” after a long time without other motivations.

I was getting a bit worn or burned out. A saying in the blogging world (that I heard) was, “Once you no longer have that stop at nothing, all consuming passion about your writing subject…you might as well stop.”

So I did for awhile, and a month turned into a couple months with little motivation to write new creative articles and stories…until something changed. I found that there were increased e-mails to myself from new contacts! People contacting me, asking for my opinions on music/artists/bands. I was sent a lot more new music from different sources, and asked to do interviews.

In a nutshell, I was becoming busier in “my hiatus” than during my busiest writing/blogging periods. I asked myself and friends why? It seemed strange to me…but my friends and I agreed, that I had probably established myself online enough at that point online, to be considered a respectable & reputable source in the niche of “Canadian indie music”. I saw that there was no point to ask why, but to accept the good fortune and try to move forward with it, and to not take myself to seriously this time.

Let’s see where this goes…

~Jason

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Tardiness is unacceptable!

December 19, 2009 at 12:20 am (Musings) (, , , , , , , , )

Tardiness…slow…being slothful, that’s how I’ve been treating this blog site of mine for awhile & I apologize. I’ve got a lot things to ponder: I could work with someone/company to make a great blog site?? The thing was this blog was always supposed to stay underground. For those people who like my writing at Tweeple Magazine, Examiner, and my twittering….well this blog was supposed to be my backwater, my used couch of comfort. Say anything, anytime.

Of course, trying to build a rep as a writer with high quality articles that get noticed or picked up/linked by larger websites…is easy in concept, but difficult in practice. So, my focus on writing high quality multimedia articles with links on the Examiner, has been slow, as sometimes I need to really be inspired by the music or the story of a band/singer.

I’ve learned a lot of things over the past few months, & I will try to post more things here, as a preview to developing stories & articles for the Examiner. As well, I’ll try to put some more cool stuff about indie groups & bands.

Stay tuned!

Jason Chu aka Chodidees

Canadian Music Examiner

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Princess Superstar

May 29, 2009 at 8:59 pm (Indie Artists, Music Reviews) (, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , )

http://www.princesssuperstar.com/

http://www.myspace.com/k7princess

http://twitter.com/psuperstar

Name: Princess Superstar

Genre: Visual/Experimental/Zouk/Flip Flop

Major/Indie/Unsigned: The Corrupt Conglomerate Inc. (Indie)

Album: Mitch Better Get My Bunny (Demo tape, 1994),  Strictly Platinum (1995), CEO (1997), Last of the Great 20th Century Composers (2000), Princess Superstar Is (2001), My Machine (2005), The Best of Princess Superstar (2007)

Released: Grandmaster Flash – The Bridge: Concept Of A Culture (Compilation of artists) March 2009

Overall Rating (out of 4): 3.5

Musicality – Princess Superstar is experimental to say the least! Her music transitions through genres of music within a song. Mixing her DJ techniques to add twists to conventional beats. The backing samples and effects are just the right amount without overdoing it. Her breakdowns, bridges, and interludes always seem to progress the song and take it somewhere. It’s great when you see artists really improve over time when you look at his/her body of work. Full marks here.

Singing/Lyrics – Her raps, rhymes, and lyrics are ridiculously good! Her rhymes are so funny and intelligent, yet they are tight and on point. She really knows how write a song and rhyme that is distinctly her, nobody else could say it the same way.

Flow/Rhythm – The tunes are very creative hip hop that is slightly outside of mainstream, which means she really experiments with her songs to show her wide range of skills (DJ/emcee/rapper). Kudos!

Freshness – She definitely has an original style and ultra creative music that mixes elements of hip hop/old school/DJ work to make a unique hybrid sound.

Technicality/Recording – Solid recordings, but some songs are mixed to different levels to vary the sound. It’s interesting experimenting, but sometimes the quieter songs lose some crispness, but oh well.

Visuals – As far as I know, she doesn’t have a Youtube page, however, her many fans have posted videos of her performances. On Myspace she has a great page with songs, links, updates and some real cool pictures! She also has her own website (all web links at the top), which she shares more songs, but most importantly has a blog that she posts in regularly (i.e. healthy food eating stuff, etc.). Finally, she has twitter too!

Top 2 Songs:

Very difficult to choose 2 top songs, since every song is pretty good, but since I have to, I decided to choose these 2 songs

1. My Machine (An amazing track with a cool bass/beat rhythms mixed with her super high quality rhymes, lyrics, and rapping) Unfortunately, I couldn’t find any video of this song.

2. Perfect (Exceeder) – Mason vs. Princess Superstar (Just an amazing remix of a song where the original was superb already! This song shows more of her DJ qualities)

2. Bad Babysitter (Uses a real cool jazzy hip hop loop. A very interesting funny lyrics, with a goofy video to go with it!)

~ Jason Chu

@Chodidees

http://www.myspace.com/chodidee

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Chimaira – “The Infection”

May 24, 2009 at 7:59 pm (Major Label, Music Reviews) (, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , )

http://chimaira.com/

http://www.myspace.com/chimaira

http://www.youtube.com/user/chimairatube
http://twitter.com/Chimairaband

Name: Chimaira

Genre: Groove Metal/Metal Core/Nu Metal

Major/Indie/Unsigned: Major: Nuclear Blast (2006 – present) + Indie label: Ferret Music (2006 – present)

Albums: This Present Darkness (1998), Pass out of Existence (2001), The Impossibility of Reason (2003), Chimaira (2005), Resurrection (2007)

Album: The Infection

Released: April 2009

Overall Rating (out of 4): 3.5

Musicality – For the metal genre, they play amazingly tight musically as a band. The music can be described as visceral sonic madness….but under control.

Singing – “Growling” vocal style of Mark Hunter is fit, aggressive, and you can still surprisingly hear & understand  the lyrics (I find that unusual in most heavy bands).

Lyrics – I have to admit I looked at a website to take a full look at “The Infection” album’s lyrics on each song, and I came away impressed! The lyrics that were written are poetry, dark poetry, but poetry nonetheless (Talking about darkness, pain, suffering, and life’s trials). It is very good, and the lyrics themselves stand on their own. I would google Chimaira lyrics if you don’t believe me.

Flow/Rhythm – Insane metal rhythms, with the drums frenetic energy (Kick drum crazy!), they truly create something creative and powerfully high energy! The rhythm guitars are heavy and crunchy where they need to be, and subtle/quieter where that’s needed. As well, the melodic lead parts on guitar add complexity to each song. This is a band at the top of their game, they have matured, progressed, and taken their music to the next level!

Technicality/Recording – Amazing audio recording, able to mix all the different types of sound elements together into a cohesive whole.

Visuals – Myspace page is excellent with music, tour dates, you name it. Their Youtube channel takes a slightly different angle, as it is a more of a talk to the fans site. The band talks about what’s going on with the band, products and promotions (a nice way to see the band beyond the music). Their personal website is more of a blog style with pictures, tour dates, and everything else. Finally, they do a Twitter account to follow, which can link  at the top of this review. So, in my books they got things pretty well held down on the technologic side!

Top 2 Songs:

1. Frozen in Time (Crazy heavy rhythm guitars, insane pounding drums, relentless, powerful! Killer Chimaira breakdown rhythms)

2. The Disappearing Sun (Insane drum rhythms with crazy lead guitar riffs, nice into lead into the song, I like how the song doesn’t rush into the mega heavy parts – patience in a metal song?!)

~ Jason Chu

@Chodidees

http://www.myspace.com/chodidee

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Music Reviews – How I Write Them

May 13, 2009 at 4:26 pm (Music Reviews) (, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , )

Name: Artist

Genre:

Major/indie/unsigned:

Album:

Released:

I will rate it “Overall” out of **** (including halves)

Musicality – the musicians ability to play cohesively (together/tight)

Singing – voice quality, confidence, best fit – with band, versatility, appealing to fans

Lyrics – depth and meaning; interesting and worthy of multiple listens

Flow/Rhythm – Is it crisp and clean, does it make people wanna hop, jump, nod their heads, step, waves their hands like they just don’t care (O.K. You get it!)

Freshness – Is this original, a new sound/style, or song, that gets me outta my seat!

Technicality/Recording – Quality of the recording

Visuals – Videos, advertisements, on Myspace, or elsewhere – does it help enhance or detract from your music/image

Top #2 Songs: I pick my fav’s

Just so everybody knows where I’m coming from, the rubric above is what I will use to review the music/musicians that will be seen here in this “Music Reviews” category in this blog. I will not be able to comment on every category for each artist because it would take too long, however, I will focus on the important ones. If you have any questions, please leave a comment, tweet, or talk to me on Myspace.

~ Jason Chu

@Chodidees

http://www.myspace.com/chodidee

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