2020 in review

I am writing this restraining myself from just writing “HAHAHA YOU ARE ALMOST DONE” and leaving it at that.

In fact, I would argue that this year is one of the most important years in my life.

Yes, it was brought on by pain, but the BLM movement coupled with the worst pandemic in a very long time showed us the human strength. We saw an attempt of the rise of fascism* thwarted. We found a vaccine for the aforementioned pandemic developed in record times, though the long-term effects are still to be discovered.
*THIS IS MY OPINION

The main places that are going to be effected are the arts. There have been mass permanent closures of music venues, theaters are closing doors, and museums are vanishing (kind of). It is almost like an artistic reset. Some would argue that it was needed: the reset will force a change in industries that have dominated and destroyed avenues, resulting in a stifling of change. Most would agree that we will not see the change take hold until the future.

As of the time of writing this (December 17th), schools have been allowed to reopen in Ontario. I will not voice opinions on the matter: you can ask me directly on my FaceBook page if you are curious. Ontario has seen a spike in cases not seen since the first cases were identified on Western borders. Again, I will keep speculation out of this.

CyberPunk finally got released! I, personally, am not upset in regards to its performance on previous gen consoles, nor am I offended that we are still seeing issues almost a decade after its first announcement. The game is massive, complicated, and ground-breaking: issues should not be a surprise, and I have faith that CD Projekt Red will fix it eventually. Call me “the eternal optimist”, but fixing something as broken as it’s been reported would look amazing on them. Especially if they can do so without putting their employees through the dreaded “crunch” to complete it.

I did not explore many new releases this year, so I am not even going to pretend to do a rundown on new music that came out this year. I don’t even have a worthy opinion on new shows that came out, though I will probably release some sort of opinion regarding the new Archer season in the coming weeks.

Anyway, I will close with a “FUCK YOU, 2020!” because, even though I consider it a very important year, it still sucked. Here’s to the hope that 2021 is less abusive.

…and I’m back.

So that break was not as long or as dire as I thought it was going to be. I moved, yet again, and did not have my computer monitor for a very long time. My dad wanted me to use a TV as a monitor, but I explained to him that the brain damage I have is on my optic nerve and I cannot focus on a screen that big. He understood; and after almost a week of searching through boxes, as well as literally building parts of the house, we found it! Now I can regale you with tales from the parts of Ontario that people don’t even drive through!

I have been holding back a little bit: I still have to finalize some bits for health care, and I alluded to the fact that I have not written anything for the last week. The health care stuff I am in a bit of a holding pattern until tomorrow (the 20th of October) because I have a meeting with a social worker. I want to see if I can figure out some personal stuff before I start sweating the little things I.E. my health. I am greatly excited to see if I can do some sort of non-profit stuff out this way, as I might be the only 30 year old in a wheelchair who hasn’t lost a limb. My unease in saying that dictates how hidden that issue is, and I am very excited to explore and assist where I can.

As far as music and I go, I think we part ways for now. At least until I get a more reliable and faster internet connection. The fact that my upload speed is under 3mb/s is mildly embarrassing. Yes, download speeds are a bit better, but I have scripts and recorded dialogue and audio-fun that I want to share with the world! At least we have something here.

Album Review :: New Design — Far From Home

I don’t think that I mentioned it in the last two reviews, but I was given some stupid FaceBook task where I was just supposed to put an album cover up (no additional information) and tag someone in it. It was lazy, pointless, and I decided to give myself the task of writing a full review for whatever I felt like deserved to be part of the decathlon of recommendations. The reason? Combination of arrogance, and bands like this.

New Design is a group from Brampton which is near the GTA. If you know nothing about Canada, they are from a city close to the city that you assume is our capitol that isn’t. If you are from Canada, you know how hilarious that sentence is.

*pause for laughter*

ANYWAY. New Design is beautiful. They take all the best parts of the emo movement of the early 2000’s and do away with the annoying bits.

They are beautiful. The music, I mean. Well, the members of the group are beautiful, as well.

…now I’m just being awkward….

I need to stop being so sidetracked. New Design are emo without being whiny. They got hold of me while I was writing for Mind The Music TO a couple of years ago. I really do love the independent music scene: you get some of the most creative and beautiful things to come out of it.

I have waffled on long enough about various things, and I have stated that I love this band. Though this album is a great introduction, I highly recommend anything by this band.

All the music can be streamed from their Bandcamp.

Classic Album Review :: Kittie — Oracle

I don’t know why I got this album in my head. I was wheeling through my kitchen humming the chorus for What I Always Wanted when my wife, being rather concerned, asked what was wrong with me. The awkward thing is that song is not the only one on the album with singing, but has the least interesting pattern to get stuck in your head.

For being from London, Ontario, this album still scratches an itch that only a few bands can. I hesitate to call it Nu Metal, but it did come out around right around Untouchables by Korn (predating it by a year). Really, a better comparison is The End of All Things to Come by Mudvayne with less “David Bottrill” in the whole sound area.

Very simple guitar and bass. Almost too much (in a good way) drums. Vocals that pierce every inch of your soul. Beautiful singing. To be honest, that is why I have gone this long with never bringing this band up before. I love them, the first 3 albums anyway, but that is literally all I have to say about them.

If you just want something heavy, yet beautiful (in a broken way), you can do MUCH worse. They do the early ’90s sound yet still remain relevant. I mean, Mudvayne and Korn are my only (halfway) decent comparisons, and they really don’t describe this band at all.

Oracle is amazing. Spit and Until the End are good, but a bit more particular. They have one more album, but I hated it.

Personal note: don’t y’all enjoy how I am like “BYE SEE YOU NEXT YEAR” and then publish a review in the same week? I am going to not be doing blog stuff, and I am only going to be writing about music you should check out. I say that not expecting anything fascinating to happen in any other regards this year. I might be wrong.

~Help?

My friend Hannah is looking for contacts who know anything about the Grandview Training School based out of Cambridge, Ontario. If you think you know of something, or know of someone who knows something, her information can be four here.

She is a long-time friend of the family. Grew up with my brother, and therefore, grew up with me. The article has all relevant information put way better than I could pretend, so I will post the link here again.

And again.