Music Monday: Coheed & Cambria – The Second Stage Turbine Blade

Album: The Second Stage Turbine Blade by Coheed & Cambria

Album Cover
The Second Stage Turbine Blade

Released: March 5th, 2002

Band Info:
Coheed & Cambria is an American progressive rock band that was formed in 1995 in Nyak, New York and released their first full-length album, The Second Stage Turbine Blade, in 2002. Fraught with line-up changes in the mid-late 2000’s, the band currently consists of founding members Claudio Sanchez (lead vocals, rhythm guitar, keyboards), Travis Stever (lead guitar, backing vocals), Josh Eppard (drums, keyboards, backing vocals), and bassist Zach Cooper who joined the band in 2011. Coheed & Cambria are known for their use of odd time signatures, concept albums based on a science fiction story by Sanchez, and their rabid fanbase. The band has released eight studio albums; the first seven albums all focus on the Kilgannon family and their role in the war to save the worlds they live on from the evil Tri-mage Wilhelm Ryanwith, while 2015’s The Color Before the Sun is the only non-concept record. The band returns to the sci-fi concept with their upcoming album, Vaxis – Act 1: The Unheavenly Creatures, which will be released on October 5th.

Band Photo
Coheed & Cambria circa 2002

Continue reading “Music Monday: Coheed & Cambria – The Second Stage Turbine Blade”

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The Matrix (1999) – Review

The Matrix (1999) Poster

Directed by Lana and Lilly Wachowski (as the Wachowski Brothers)

Written by Lana and Lilly Wachowski (as the Wachowski Brothers)

Cast: Keanu Reeves, Laurence Fishburne, and Carrie-Anne Moss

Length: 2 hours and 16 minutes

Genre: Action, science fiction

MPAA Rating: R

Description from IMDB:

“A computer hacker learns from mysterious rebels about the true nature of his reality and his role in the war against its controllers.” Continue reading “The Matrix (1999) – Review”

The Sirens of Titan – Review

The Sirens of Titan by Kurt Vonnegut

Published in 1959

Pages: 326

Genre: Science fiction

“Everyone now knows how to find the meaning of life within himself.”

This meaning is most likely less than one would hope after reading through the pages of Kurt Vonnegut’s 1959 novel, The Sirens of Titan. Taking a peak into the ridiculousness of self-imposed importance on the part of the human race, the novel asks the question: are humans as important as we believe we are, or are we simply a means to an end? The story travels around the Milky Way galaxy and beyond, pointing out the absurd and predestined in a sprawling tale that nearly loses sight of its ultimate goal. Continue reading “The Sirens of Titan – Review”

Deadpool (2016) – Review

Deadpool (2016) Poster

Directed by Tim Miller

Written by Rhett Reese and Paul Wernick

Cast: Ryan Reynolds, Morena Baccarin, Ed Skrein, Stefan Kapicic, and Brianna Hildebrand

Length: 1 hour and 48 minutes

Genre: Action, adventure, comedy

MPAA Rating: R

Description from IMDB:

“A fast-talking mercenary with a morbid sense of humor is subjected to a rogue experiment that leaves him with accelerated healing powers and a quest for revenge.” Continue reading “Deadpool (2016) – Review”

Fire from Heaven – Review

Fire from Heaven by Mary Renault

Published in 1969

Pages: 370

Genre: Historical fiction

“The child was wakened by the knotting of the snake’s coils about his waist.”

Those familiar with the myth of Heracles will notice its connection to the opening line of Fire from Heaven, by Mary Renault. Hera, jealous of Zeus’s infidelity, sent two snakes in Heracles’ crib in order to kill him. In this tale about the childhood of Alexander the Great, however, the snake is a friendly creature owned by his mother. Connections between the strongest of Greek heroes and Alexander abound in the novel and, as the young prince grows into his glory, the hero becomes a sort of patron god for the young conqueror whose greatness was apparent from childhood. Continue reading “Fire from Heaven – Review”

Music Monday: My Chemical Romance – The Black Parade

Album: The Black Parade by My Chemical Romance

Album Cover
The Black Parade

Released: October 23rd, 2006

Band Info:
My Chemical Romance was a rock band from Newark, New Jersey that was active from 2001 to 2013. The band’s line-up was made up of lead vocalist Gerard Way, guitarists Ray Toro and Frank Iero, bassist Mikey Way, and drummer Bob Bryer. Founded in the wake of 9/11, My Chemical Romance released their debut album, I Brought You My Bullets, You Brought Me Your Love in 2002 that was followed by Three Cheers for Sweet Revenge two years later, which led to their commercial success. The band topped their previous releases with the 2006 concept album, The Black Parade, which gained a decent amount of critical acclaim and led them on to an arduous touring schedule. The band’s final release, Danger Days: The True Lives of the Fabulous Killjoys, was also a concept album that had more pop sentiments and received positive reviews despite alienating some fans. My Chemical romance broke up in 2013 and have since released a greatest hits album in 2014 and a tenth anniversary reissue of The Black Parade in 2016.

Band Photo
My Chemical Romance dressed as The Black Parade in 2006.

Continue reading “Music Monday: My Chemical Romance – The Black Parade”