That Girl With A Blog











Well, it’s the very first Metal Monday here on That Girl With A Blog and boy do we have a treat for you! Pittsburgh’s very own Dethlehem has released their second full length album, The Ghorusalem Codex, Volume 2: Of Magick & Tyranny, the long awaited sequel to their 2009 debut, The Ghorusalem Codex, Volume I: Enthroned Upon A Spire.

“But, what makes this a two-fer!?”, you ask. And the answer to that question is the fact that I saw them spouting this stuff live on Friday. Kickass.

As for Dethlehem, self-described as “epic, medieval, fantasy, Dungeons and Dragons metal”, they’re a riot. What sets them apart from other bands in this vein is their tongue-in-cheek approach. Imagine Gwar, but funny. To catch you up on the story so far, from the band’s Myspace:

Dethlehem formed in the greatest respect to the centuries old story of the Three-Wise-Demons. The story takes place long ago before the first cataclysm, in the well known village of Dethlehem, in the land of Ghorusalem. History says that a baby with great, evil powers was born to a virgin goblin whore. After the birth, the infant first brought plague to the village of Dethlehem. Not soon after, ancient flying serpents were awakened from their hibernation deep in the earth’s crust. They soon ruled the land, only to abide by the unholy one’s word. Soon, the Three-Wise-Demons: Galatan, Kullinia, and Brigalathis visited the baby boy and revealed to him just how much evil he could control. They named him, Yagolith.

Yagolith, king of all that is evil, harnessed his powers for the most evil purposes. With his ability to shape shift into a dragon, he became quite knowledgable, and his hunger for treasure grew and grew.

For hundreds of years, Yagolith went unchallenged. Until a Legion of Warriors traveled the lands to battle him under a cursed sky…

Long story short, and not to give too many spoilers (you can download this album for free here to get the full story), the formidable band of archaic men kick some goblin-dragon shapeshifter and demon ass. Hey, if they hadn’t, there wouldn’t have been a Volume 2, right? You could’ve figured that one out on your own.

And that leaves us where The Ghorusalem Codex, Volume 2: Of Magick & Tyranny begins. After vanquishing the malevolent Yagolith, the gang, comprised of Lord Bonecrush, Overlord Brom, Bovice, Davidcus the Black, and Hildor, return to find their beloved Dethlehem in ruins. They embark on a quest amidst sand, dirt, and sky to seek their revenge.

I must admit that it’s actually a pretty damn good story! I find myself getting what is probably far more into this album than I should be. All except for the pee-soaked goblin. I could do without the scent of urine. I guess it’s adds to the charm, though, eh? I do also find myself missing the epic guitar solos of Volume 1 (but they brought it back a little in their live show!), but it leaves more room for this yarn to be spun and more adventures to be had. Also, in comparison of their first effort, they’ve gone for a slightly more melodic approach versus their prior thrash metal status, which I particularly prefer. Oh, there’s still growling and such, but the new sound paints a much more vivid story. This is certainly a band of very talented men doing what they do best and having a little fun while they’re at it. That much fun is bound to be infectious, and it sure is.

Alright, now I do know how this ends, but you’re just going to have to listen to the album for yourself to find out. I can tell you that it involves a kick ass fight scene and some portals. Can’t go wrong with portals, right?

To be honest here, I always find it a little harder to do a review for a local band. The Pittsburgh music scene is alive and well and who am I to knock someone down a peg? Thankfully, Dethlehem has made this one very easy for me. I like this album, a lot, and want to know what’s fucked up?

It’s even better live.

Myself and The Husband went to go see them at their CD release show at The Smiling Moose Friday night. I should add that I haven’t been to The Moose since July of 2009, for what I think is a pretty good reason, but this was a pretty kickass way to break that streak. It actually wasn’t the first time that we’d seen them, but it was indeed the first time that we’d seen them in a proper venue. For starters, the place was beyond packed (sold-out, actually, if I’m thinking correctly) and you simply couldn’t beat the energy, despite the fact that it was “late as tits” (Lord Bonecrush).

There were pirates, wenches, medieval knights, and inflatable 20-sided die. I don’t think you can really beat that. They opened with the beginning of the new album, talk-y bits and all, went into a few old tracks and did their classic, rousing rendition of Seal’s “Kiss From A Rose”, which was shockingly good. Overlord Brom is a beast on the drums, managing to play them impeccably well, IN A HELMET. Seriously, just check these guys out already. This was definitely a well spent Friday night in Pittsburgh. These guys totally get an A for effort. When it comes to Dethlehem, you can be assured that nothing you ever hear will be half-assed. Check out more on their site, Facebook, or Twitter.

And Happy Metal Monday! Stay tuned for the next installment with another Pittsburgh band, River Runs Scarlet!

“Kiss From A Rose”

Advertisements


Wow, Steven Smith loves him some Cruze-arati…and good punk. The former “Untitled Rock Show Host” has done some awesome stuff so far [see: Less Than Jake], and he’s back again with another of my favorite bands, the Bouncing Souls!

Check it out!

Yes, I still have a giant, girly, crush on Bryan. And yes, I want those shoes. Happy Monday, errbody!



So, Steven Smith, formerly of “Steven’s Untitled Rock Show” on Fuse is doing a whole “Music Unexpected” thing, and it’s pretty cool. It’s relatively new, but he’s already gone behind the scenes with A Great Big Pile of Leaves and Less Than Jake, plus, he’s spent a day with Goom Radio in New Jersey.

From what I hear, there’s more fun stuff to come, but in the meantime, check out his quality hangout time with Less Than Jake at their Philly show at the Trocadero! (I know, a Pittsburgh show would have been better…this might also be my crazy hockey fan-dom talking.) It’s pretty rad! (And yes, I still love LTJ, despite that whole TV/EP situation.)

I think they made it farrrr too easy on him! What kind of roadie actually gets to “watch” the show when they’re done!? They’re too busy making sure things run smoothly. That’s kinda what roadies do.

Other than that, though…pretty good stuff! Stay tuned for more fun things from “Music Unexpected”!



{October 14, 2009}   Boycott Ticketmaster

Boycott Ticketmaster!!!So it’s been quite a while since I’ve actually purchased concert tickets…or tickets to anything for that matter, online. I always just got them at the door. What the fuck did I miss!? When we went to see Mike Doughty last Thursday, I went to the Ticketmaster website to see how much they were. Only $16! How affordable! Especially for a concert that I want to see so badly! Wrong. Oh so very, very wrong. $9 of charges per ticket. That’s more than half the fucking ticket price!

This is beyond ridiculous. Thankfully, I’ve found some other resources for concert tickets in the Pittsburgh area:

Dave’s Music Mine
Mr. Small’s Funhouse
Club Cafe
Garfield Artworks
The Rex
31st St. Pub
…and possibly more, those are just the one’s currently listed on their website.

The Exchange
Has tickets to most of the venues listed above, plus possibly more.

The Benedum
I know you =can buy tickets directly through their box office, as I did when we saw Tori Amos last year. I think you can do this with Heinz Hall as well.

The shame of it is, it’s not Ticketmaster’s fault that they’re a monopoly…it’s the fault of the venues and their exclusive contracts. Ticketmaster also gets no part of ticket sales, so here come the charges!

Service Charge – For the general service they provide.
Building Facility Charge – Determined by the venue, still raked in by Ticketmaster.
Processing Charge – ‘Cause we all know how expensive it is to send an email.
Shipping/E-Ticket/Will Call – Just because they can!

Often these fees are 30% to even 50% of the actual ticket price. What the fuck, Ticketmaster? And they get away with this by giving away million dollar sign-on bonuses to large venues. And it’s not even just music! Ticketmaster is the primary ticket seller for TWENTY SEVEN of thirty NHL teams and TWENTY EIGHT of thirty NBA teams. At least the MLB has gone with competitor, Tickets.com. From now on, I’m going to try my best to not support this monopoly any longer, or their subsidiaries:

Ticketmaster Ventures, Inc.
Ticketmaster Corp.
TMC Realty Holdings, Inc.
Ticketmaster Publications, Inc.
Ticketmaster Travel Corp.
TM/Video International, Inc.
Ticketmaster Advertising, Inc.
TMC Consultants, Inc.
Ticketmaster Tell Ltd.
Ticketmaster-Direct, Inc.
Cinema Acquisition Corp.
Ticketmaster Cinema Group, Ltd.
TM Movie Tix Holdings, Inc.
TM Marketing, Inc.
Ticketmaster Merchandising Corp.
Ticketmaster-Golf, Inc.
MFG Management Corp.
TM Flowers
TM National Flora LLC.

Instead, I’ll be going with the competitors:

LM Loyalty Management
Neighborhood Box Office
NEXT Ticketing
Prologue Systems
Tickets.com, Inc.

Further steps can also be taken. Urge your favorite artists/sports teams to not use Ticketmaster, along with your local venues. The less people who use them, the less power they’ll have to overcharge the masses.

In addition to monopolizing the ticket market and charging these ridiculous fees, Ticketmaster also has no regard for customer privacy. Directly from their website:

“By completing this registration form you indicate that you consent to Ticketmaster sharing your email address and other information with those who provide the event, and that you consent to those who provide the event using your information to contact you by email or other means to send you marketing or other messages or using or disclosing your information in other ways. By completing this registration form, you also indicate that you consent to Ticketmaster contacting you by email or other means to send you marketing or other messages and using and disclosing the information you submit, as described in the Ticketmaster Privacy.”

Why do we let them get away with shit like this!? Fuck Ticketmaster. I’m going with Tickets.com!



Me and Mike Doughty!I DID get to see Mike Doughty on Thursday and as always, it was a spectacularly fabulous show. This was my first time attending a question jar show and I’ll tell you what, Mike Doughty is one funny man.

And I don’t know what it is…whether it’s just Pittsburgh that makes him tell people to “shove it up their cunts” or if this is just a favorite phrase of Doughty’s, but it makes me laugh every time.

At this show, they also did a live recording that was available afterwards, it’s super fun! At the beginning of the first video, you get to hear the answer to one of our (read: Adam’s) questions, which was, “Why is well liquor always Banker’s Club? Who are these bankers and why do they drink such shitty liquor?” This was probably one of my favorite answers…here, watch!

Sorry for the poor quality BTW…

And…Mike Doughty has never fucked a Republican. Who knew?

“Tremendous Brunettes” I love how when he says that he will never perform naked you can hear me say an audible, “Damn…” haha. A girl can wish, I suppose.

Aaaaand…”Ossining”.

It was a really fantastic show, in case you couldn’t tell. He even played two Soul Coughing tracks! “Circles” and “True Dreams of Wichita”. My goddamn batteries died in the middle of it, of course, so that video’s not included. He did play a few songs from each solo album, including “Real Love” which I thought was badass. And man, I’ll tell you what…Andrew Howard “Scrap” Livingston is a goddamn animal on the cello. Absolutely phenomenal. (As seen in the “White Lexus” video above.)

Club Cafe was a super sweet venue for this show, as well. I mean, it’s very dark and small, but it’s incredibly intimate and the sound was amazing. It was a huge change from Mr. Small’s Funhouse, where I’ve seen him twice before. No, I didn’t get to hear “King of Carrot Flowers”, but this was still an amazing fucking show. If you ever get a chance to see this man live, plugged or acoustic, you will not be disappointed. Make sure to check out his new album, Sad Man Happy Man, out now!



Me and Erin McKeownThere is nothing better than live music. It’s as simple as that. I had my first live encounter with Erin McKeown at the Thunderbird Cafe in Lawrenceville, PA on March 20, 2009…the first day of spring, appropriately. She played solo, dressed all in white, and exuded more emotion and charisma than you think would be possible coming from someone so small! Don’t let that small stature fool you, this girl’s got some stage presence.

She came out on stage and went directly into “Aspera”, the first track off of We Will Become Like Birds. Who needs to waste any time, huh? The hook off of this song is based on ad astera per aspera, a Latin phrase for “to the stars through difficulties”.

She only played two songs, “”Rhode Island Is Famous For You” and “Coucou”, from her newest album, Sing You Sinners. She did, however, play quite a few songs from her album, Lafeyette, due out this fall. It’s refreshing to see an artist excited for a new album. Usually they’ll play one or two new songs to give you a taste, then get back to all the songs that you know and love. Erin McKeown doesn’t give a shit about you. She’s gonna get up there and play what she wants to play! (And we love her for it!)

She did bust out a few of the classics for long-time fans, though, including, “Cosmopolitans”, “Cinematic”, “The Little Cowboy”, “Blackbirds”, and “La Petit Mort”.

What’s awesome is that she rocked them all, old and new. She did the usual band/audience banter and told a few tales of her adventures in Pittsburgh. This is usually where I get disinterested and go smoke, but McKeown can definitely engage an audience. She told stories of heartache and love and laughter and family. A particular favorite of mine was a story she told regarding an interview earlier that day on WYEP, she’s doing the normal Q&A deal when she’s asked, “Will you ever do a holiday album?” Her simple answer: “No”. She’d rather do a Labor Day album, or Memorial Day. It’ll be “about picnics”.

And this another good reason why I love Erin McKeown. She’s so down to Earth. Hell, she’s her own merch girl! She’s the epitome of the “if it’s gonna get done right, better do it myself” mentality. And seriously, I want an Erin McKeown album about picnics.

The only thing that got me down about this show was the venue. The Thunderbird, well, it kinda sucks. The service was great, staff was friendly, but it’s incredibly small and awkwardly laid out. Thankfully, the owners must know this because there were flat screens in every room.

We did get to meet her after the show and she’s just so incredibly sweet, and so short, haha. I am a merch whore, so I bought two CDs and a t-shirt. All in all it was like $40? Not too bad for all that.

I would definitely go see her again. I’d like to maybe see her with a band, since I’ve now seen her solo, but I can vouch that her solo act is stellar. If you haven’t heard of this woman, check her out! Check her out, now!!!

Erin McKeown’s Website



et cetera
%d bloggers like this: