Monday, 29 March 2010

Classic Hip Hop. Know your stuff.

Classic in my opinion. Going back to when I was a kid at school and all the places between then and now. I have always listened to rap and hip hop over the years. Like any other genre, the majority is crap. But at certain times in a musical genres trajectory, it drops defining works. These are some of the ones that have always, for many reasons ( at the moment mainly to help recover from the pasting my wallet took in Edinburgh this past weekend ), been played at Turner HQ. Go get Liquid Swords here. That's a classic but seeing as I already posted that one some time ago its not in here.

The other weekend I saw him on TV baby sitting some kids and baking cakes. Once upon a time he was rapping about smoking weed and shooting folk.

Much loved for live instrumentation, one hell of a tight rhythm section and Hub always had a chewing stick.

You really need to listen hard with this one. Rawkus hit the nail on the head with this gem.

He now acts with Jack Black and pops up in Talladega Nights but in '99 this album ruled.

Bought on a whim alongside Company Flow. Crazy stuff at the time. Forward thinking and lo-fi in the same breath.

Instrumental greatness from the brains behind the Beastie Boys. This accompanied many nights out during my younger period. Much sought to borrow by my waster friends.

Nothing further needs to be written about this album. Maybe I shouldn't have been listening to it at primary school. Its all Vultures fault if you want someone to blame.

Thursday, 25 March 2010

Lalo Schifrin - Dirty Harry Anthology (1998)

An addition from my own collection ( please ignore the naff cover, it's really that bad). Lalo Schifrin should need no introduction to anyone that I deem cool enough to be my friend. His work on Coogan's Bluff and friendship with Clint Eastwood gave Don Siegal all confidence he needed to hand over full score rights to Schifrin. Who turned in one of the most distinctive musical scores in modern film history in my humble opinion. He went on and composed the music for all of the sequels with the exception of The Enforcer in 1976. His work on Dirty Harry and Magnum Force is the obvious highlight of this collection. A combination of grimy jazz, fusion guitar, haunting vocals and genuine fear makes them classics. Weirdly cool but also unsettling. The music for Sudden Impact and The Dead Pool isn't too bad but doesn't really match the first two films atmosphere. That said. The Dead Pool is worth it for Jim Carrey lip syncing to Welcome To The Jungle in a Exorcist style setting.
But back to Lalo. This is a superbly atmospheric soundtrack and one that I can't help but notice has influenced so many over the years.

A true classic movie............

Saturday, 20 March 2010

Morbid Angel - Formulas Fatal To The Flesh (1998)

Why did I get up so early on a Saturday? Its not right. When I woke up I put this on. Morbid Angel's best album and most under rated in my opinion. First to feature Steve Tucker, who isn't on a par with David Vincent but does a pretty solid job. Listen out for the end of Nothing Is Not. They get into this riff and keep slowing it down until it becomes this discordant crawl. Superbly brutal.

Morbid Angel - Formulas Fatal To The Flesh

Got the link from The Frozen Throne blog. Lots and lots of DM and other brutal stuff.

Friday, 19 March 2010

McBain (1991)

Why had I never heard of this film until the other day. Strolling through Morrison's it was sat there winking at me from the £1 DVD bucket ( alongside Swamp Thing). It could not be ignored. Especially seeing as it was directed and produced by James Glickenhaus, who was also responsible for Turner household classics like The Exterminator and Maniac Cop.
Christopher Walken has always been a favourite actor of mine. Despite the amount of shit films he puts his name to he still gives raises them up a notch in my opinion. Here he plays Bobby McBain who after being rescued from a Thunderdome style POW camp in Vietnam at the end of the war, splits a $100 bill with his Rescuer, Santos. If he ever receives the other half then he must repay his debt. Fast forward 18 years and Santos is leading a revolution against the Colombian President ( Victor Argo, great actor but pretty much sleep walks through this role). Who is a bad man. We know this by the level of armed security he has and the fact he orders prostitutes to the palace. Santos is publicly executed in a failed attack on the palace. Santos's sister, played by Maria Conchito Alonso ( the lass from Predator 2) goes to the top of a bridge in New York and calls in Walken's debt to Santos.
After assembling his old unit they set out gaining the funds to start the middle aged war against Victor. This means shaking down drug dealers and pretending to be Mossad whilst claiming responsibility for the Munich bombings. Once set up they fly off to Columbia and begin a pretty quick assault on a drug factory and then the Presidential palace. It all works out pretty much how you would expect it to. What makes the film that slightly bit more special than other low rent actioners is the obvious inconsistencies and silly events that take place. For example, a breach of Colombian airspace is resolved by McBain taking down a fighter jet with his pistol that he shoots through two separate windscreens at air speeds......

ts superbly silly stuff. neither windscreen is broken or anything. only Walken could do that. That pretty much kicks off many glaringly obvious but incredibly over the top moments. Being the military trained professionals they can stand in the middle of a huge firefight and let of sparse but accurate shots without being hit themselves. The youngest member of the team sacrifices his life so the revolution can continue after a failed bombing. The bad guys can of course never hit anything with there terrible aim and huge arsenal while the good guys tiny sub machine guns hit everything they shoot at.
This was blatantly obvious to the cast and film makers I can imagine, and they make the most of it with enthusiasm. Walken's team ( who feature Micheal Ironside with "real" ponytail and Windows from The Thing) cover the usual characters found in a military squad. All haunted by the past but can kill anyone in a instant.
I even think Walken knew how much of a silly adventure this was going to be but turns a limp script that bit better with his usual skill. He also sports the classic Walken fro. Which is worth the pound in my eyes. McBain is a fun enough action B-movie. not as good as Walken's similar film The Dogs Of War but neither is it trying to be. A quid well spent.


Tuesday, 16 March 2010

Brian May - Mad Max - OST (1979)

Childhood favourite. Now as a 28 year old adult ( on paper at least) it is still one of my all time favourite films, and one which kick started my obsession with apocalyptic fiction and film. Here we have the original score composed by Brian May, the Australian composer with a similar name to the other more famous one. Dramatic, haunting and in all honesty far to intense to actually drive to ( as I have found out on the many occasions I have hit the motorway with this blaring).

Mad Max - OST

Also for anyone with as much interest/obsession with the Mad Max universe as I do then its worth having a gander at this timeline some dude called Alex Maddison has compiled. Taking information from the novelisations of the films and various other sources he has compiled a pretty awesome read of how society broke down, the formation of the MFP and how the various characters came through the series. Complete geek stuff but I love it.

Mad Max Timeline

"We gotta give em back there heroes!"

Saturday, 13 March 2010

Gorguts - Obscura (1998)

In anticipation for the fact Gorguts have another album on the way and it features John Longstreth and Mick Barr in the line-up ( think about them playing alongside Luc lemay ). I offer you one of the greatest death metal albums of all time. Incredibly twisted, discordant fret abuse from 1998 by way of Canada. A classic.

Recent viewings

Well had quite a bit to watch these past few weeks. Continuing my disintegrating bank account mission on great/shit films has led me to acquire the following...

Crocodile (2000)
Tobe Hooper's worst film ( I have seen at least). I am a sucker for giant monster/creature films so on a Poundland shopping spree it popped up on my radar. Usual teen slaughter fare. Incredibly annoying, intensely dis likable spring breakers get munched by a giant Egyptian croc. Pretty funny in places. mostly for the fact the animatronic crocodile is so much better than the naff Ocean PC game style CGI. No where near as good as Alligator (1980).

Cat In The Brain (1990)
Budget Luci Fulci "giallo". Cobbling together footage from his previous films to tell a film-within-a-film style story. Fulci plays himself as he begins to see scenes from his own movies played out in real life. Chuck in a psychiatrist and plenty of boobs and you have it. Not one of Fulci's best by any stretch but pretty enjoyable for many amusing death scenes involving chainsaws, wheelchairs, hooks, knives and plenty of other nasty things.

3D cover woo.

Loose Cannons (1990)
Buddy cop movie with Gene Hackman and Dan Akroyd. Completely silly and ridiculous, mindless fun. There is a plot about Nazi's and stolen film but the main attraction is Akroyd's schizophrenic detective putting on different characters and persona's. Hackman is pretty good in this but he does seem to be running on auto pilot for most of it. It does have Dom Delouise in as well. Which reminded me that there is a hilarious clip from SNL where Chris Farley plays Dom and the sadly missed Phil Hartman plays Burt Reynolds. Its pretty sweet. I can't find a trailer for this film but there is a song of the soundtrack performed by Katey Segal and Dan Akroyd himself.

Inglorious Bastards (1978)
The original "macaroni" war movie version. Tarantino loved this film so much he borrowed the title for his own and gave cameos to quite a few of the cast. Sort of like the Dirty Dozen but slightly dirtier. A bunch of American soldiers under court marshal manage to escape during a attack and make for the Swiss border. Along the way they heavy handily deal with racism, first love and loyalty and get caught up in a mission to scupper some Nazi rocket. Enzo Castellari believes this was one of his best films and I would probably agree with that. Solid, WWII action fodder. Plus its got Fred Williamson in it which makes any film that slight bit cooler.


Strange Bedfellows (2004)
Another Poundland buy. 100p got me a film where Paul Hogan pretends to be gay to get tax benefits. I would say that's a pretty sweet deal. The actual plot and story was ripped off whole sale by Universal for I Now Pronounce You Chuck And Larry (2007). Funnily enough this film was released in Europe as I Now Pronounce You Ralph And Vince. There is some sort of legal dispute going on about all of this. I would say this is the better film. Genuinely sweet and harmless fun if not a little heavy handed in its portrayal of gay culture. But its Paul Hogan pretending to be gay! So that is worthy of a pound.


The Fist Foot Way (2008)
The first film to really show off Danny Mcbride's acting talents. Tells the tale of a black belt Taekwondo instructor as his life falls apart. Its one of those films alongside Baseketball that is best watched late at night with your friends and some drinks. Features so many quotable lines that have now passed into use amongst people I know and has one of the best characters in Mike McAlister ( Jody Hill) as a intense martial artist. Will Ferrel liked it so much he released it through his own Production Company. So there.


Other than that everything else is still pretty crap. Thank god for Sabbath and The Dillinger Escape Plans cover of "Paranoid". Originally recorded for some Earache/Sabbath comp. I don't think it ever got released. it features the original DEP line-up and a swing break in the middle. Classy stuff.

Now get out my house.

Tuesday, 9 March 2010

When good things go bad.

If we only knew what would be happening after this photo was taken. We would have still done it.

Saturday, 6 March 2010

Return To Forever - Romantic Warrior (1976)

How shit am I at updating? Illness, financial struggles and good old fashioned laziness have prevented me from posting for a while. This is a stop gap while the next few posts are being finished, which seems almost disrespectful towards Chick Corea.

Return To Forever was Corea's baby. He assembled Stanley Clarke, Lenny White and Ali Di Meola together and created this superb album. Blatantly the ever evolving, fusion outfits greatest work in my stupid and pointless opinion. I really don't know enough about jazz to comment loads on it. But for the past 8 years this album has always been played at HQ. Do yourself a favour and get involved.