Monday, March 11, 2019

JESUS CHRIST LOOKS LIKE ME


I don't think there's a middle ground when it comes to Type O Negative—you're either all in, or you're out.

I am 100% in.

Their dark, gothic, vampire metal just fills me with so much joy that I will listen to them for days on end, and not regret in the least.

Type O Negative was formed and fronted by a man named Peter Steele, in Brooklyn, New York in the late 1980's. Steele was 6' 8" tall, with long black hair, and looked like an actual vampire. He was very sarcastic, and had a strange sense of humor, which led to some great lyrics, but also got him in a lot of trouble with people who didn't quite understand what the hell he was doing. One of my favorite stories about him (aside from being a cat guy, and writing the song "Bloody Kisses" about his family cat that died after 17 years) is that didn't think the band was ever going to really go anywhere, so when they did eventually sign a record contract, he was reluctant to quit his day job as a garbageman for the New York City Parks Department.

Hot tip: Don't search Peter Steele if your safe search is off. He posed for Playgirl once, and once you've seen those photos, you'll never be able to unsee them.

I put together a playlist of my favorite Type O Negative tracks. So turn the lights down low, light some candles, and let the darkness wash over you.


Sunday, March 3, 2019

THE ANGST IS REAL



Does everyone go through phases of what they watch? I do, but I also make a real effort to switch things up as I go along. Everyone binge watches things now, we just don't talk about it because we're all terrified that someone else is ahead of us and could potentially spoil it for us.

The trick to that is to lay low for a few weeks (which isn't hard for me, because I'm home a lot), watch every single episode of something, then casually bring it up in conversation to see if anyone else is caught up, and wants to talk about it (me with BROOKLYN 99). Other times, we find a show that's so dumb, but so entertaining that we almost don't dare admit that we spent so many hours with it (also me, with BANSHEE and BELOW DECK).

When I binge TV shows, I have to switch it up between seasons. I like to think about what I just watched, what it means, and where things might go. To do that, I need something totally different. In between each season of BROOKLYN 99, I watched all the JASON BOURNE movies. During SUPERSTORE, I got really into stand-up comedy again, and finally got around to watching all three John Mulaney specials that are on Netflix. A little while after, while those jokes were still fresh in my head, I came across a Twitter thread called "Pop Punk Bands of the 2000's as John Mulaney Quotes."

It was a very niche thing, and right up my alley. I laughed at it for days. The girl who started it kept adding to it, and other people kept replying with their own suggestions. Some of the choices were spot on (Fall Out Boy still makes me laugh), and some of the replies just made me roll my eyes (get out of here with your Black Veil Brides and 21 Pilots bullshit—those bands aren't pop punk), which sums up Twitter pretty accurately.

But it made me think a lot about the bands included, some of whom I still listen to, and some that never appealed to me even back then. So I took cues from that thread and built a playlist. The first half of it is songs and bands that I actually like, and then it kind of drops off from there. Taking Back Sunday, Sum 41, Good Charlotte, and Panic! At the Disco all deserve to be on this playlist, but if I'm being honest, I'll skip those songs every time. Paramore was a band that I never got into, but they've been getting stuck in my head a lot lately, and this video has a lot to do with it. And I couldn't even bring myself to add Yellowcard or All Time Low. I tried, but it just wasn't happening.

Did I leave out anything that should be on here?


OH HELLO.

I'm at a loss with this thing.

Every time I think about writing something here, I change my mind. I have no idea if anyone still reads blogs, but my suspicions say that they do not. Everything is on Instagram or Pinterest, and both of those sites are pretty boring (in my opinion) now. I still look at IG every day, don't get me wrong, but it's not as much fun as it used to be. There's no rhyme or reason to any of the post orders, story viewers (the most fun part of that god damn function!) disappear after 24 hours, and no one really knows how to use it anymore. I barely even post on Twitter or Facebook anymore. I'm just bored with all of it.

Anyway.

I've still been writing, but it's mostly stuff that I doubt anyone will ever see. Maybe that will change one day, but most likely they'll just live in my Google Drive or on my desktop forever. Sorry you'll never see any of it, but that's okay.

One thing that I have been having a lot of fun with lately is Spotify. Making playlists is still really fun for me, and I've been doing a lot of that. My new plan is to use this blog to share those playlists and write a little about each of them. Sometimes the playlists are themed, and sometimes they're just random collections of what I listened to that month. Rather than spill my guts through words that no one wants to read, you can get a sense of my state of mind through music, which everyone loves!

It's also going to help me flex a muscle that I haven't used in a long time. Writing about music was a HUGE part of my life for a while, but then it just stopped. I wrote about local bands for the U of U newspaper, did touring band interviews and show previews for City Weekly, and waxed intellectual about hardcore and punk music for SLUG. I also ran a little SLCHC blog called Grudge City Activities (RIP, because we forgot to renew the domain and now they want $5,000 for it, but archived at http://gcactivities.blogspot.com) with my friend Dan Fletcher for a few years. Listening to songs and writing about them is fun, and I want to do more of it. So I'm going to.

You can find me on Spotify (trevorxhale) and listen to all of the playlists, or you can just check back here every once in a while and see what I've been up to.

Let's see how long this lasts.