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Music, Movies, & General Geekery: Life.
by Christopher Grant Harris

Wednesday, 11 March 2020

For Your Wednesday Listening Pleasure: “A View to a Kill” by Duran Duran

Duran Duran: A View to a Kill

Face to face in secret places, feel the chill…

The fact that they released a brand-new James Bond theme a couple of weeks ago plus the news that they decided to delay the new Bond flick until Fall has got me thinking quite a bit about James Bond themes. So here’s one of my all-time favorites. Partake and be pleasured by the 80s blacklight goodness:

You have now been pleasured.

CAPTION

Categories: Movies, Videos, Wednesday Listening Pleasure.

Sunday, 1 March 2020

Movie Review: Star Wars Episode IX: The Rise of Skywalker (2019)

New Review: Star Wars Episode IX: The Rise of Skywalker

We had each other. That’s how we won…

Star Wars Episode IX: The Rise of Skywalker (2019) ★★★½

Directed by JJ Abrams

I have a confession: I’m not really a Star Wars fan. I can’t be a Star Wars fan. Why not? Because I actually like Star Wars. Pretty much all of it. I love the prequels. I liked the original Clone Wars movie before it became a series. I loved, loved, loved Episode VIII. I enjoy all of these things as fun, slightly silly, Saturday-morning fare for kids that can sometimes skew slightly adult. Therefore I can’t be a true Star Wars fan, because I don’t nit-pick the damned thing to death. As such: I really, really enjoyed Episode IX: The Rise of Skywalker. More… »

Categories: Movie Reviews, Movies, Reviews.

Thursday, 27 February 2020

Old School Chiptune Show: See Leeni & Figher X in Belltown this Friday!

Leeni & Fighter X

It’s been a while…

Tomorrow there’s an event that’s a bit of a blast from the past. Chiptune musicians Leeni and Fighter X are putting on a show together with Katrina Kope (who is not strictly speaking a chiptune musician) at the Belltown Yacht club.

It’s been about a decade since Leeni has performed a chiptune show in this state. In fact, it was about 11 years ago that I went and saw both Leeni and Fighter X perform a chiptune show at The Vera Project in Seattle!

So if you’d like to go to a fun show full of electronic beep-boop music, you’d probably enjoy this one!

Details:
Leeni plus Fighter X (Plus special guest) (tickets)
Friday, February 28th, 9:00 PM
@ The Belltown Yacht Club
2320 1st Avenue, Seattle, WA 98121 (map)
21+, $10 advance/$12 day of

Categories: Concerts/Shows.

Wednesday, 26 February 2020

For Your Wednesday Listening Pleasure: “Talkin’ About That Burden” by Warren Dunes

Warren Dunes: Talkin' About That Burden

Talkin’ about that, talkin’ about that, talkin’ about that, talkin’ about that…

Earlier this month perennial thisischris.com favorite Warren Dunes was on Nancy Guppy’s “Art Zone” show on The Seattle Channel. They performed a song that has not yet been recorded and released to the general public, so if you haven’t seen them perform it live, this is probably your first time to be able to hear it! It’s basically an instrumental, because the only lyrics in the whole song are “Talkin’ about that burden” repeated over and over.

The first half of this video is actually Nancy Guppy interviewing Julia, which you should watch if you are interested. The song itself starts at 3:25 (I’ve keyed the video to start then). Partake and be pleasured:

You have now been pleasured.

Categories: Music, Videos, Wednesday Listening Pleasure.

Wednesday, 19 February 2020

For Your Wednesday Listening Pleasure: “No Time to Die” by Billie Eilish

No Time to Die: Billie Eilish

Fool me once, fool me twice…

There’s a new James Bond movie coming out this year! And that means there’s a new James Bond theme song. This is all rather exciting for me; I’m a bit of a James Bond aficionado. The Bond films were my go-to comfort films in my teens and early twenties. I’m also a connoisseur of Bond theme songs. If you meet me at a party, you could ask me to recite the title and artist of all the Bond themes in chronological order and I could probably do it.

Bond themes are a fascinating genre of music all their own. There are a few clunkers (*cough* Quantum of Solace *cough*), but they’ve also produced some of my favorite songs of all time (*cough* Skyfall *cough*). There’s also fun side-branch of secondary Bond themes: original songs that appear either during the movies themselves (á la the Pretenders song “Where Has Everybody Gone” in The Living Daylights) or alternate theme songs played over the end credits (á la k.d. lang’s excellent Tomorrow Never Dies alternate song “Surrender”).

But I digress. As you can see I can go on and on about Bond minutiae.

For No Time to Die, the 25th Bond film, they’ve roped in up-and-coming dark-pop musician Billie Eilish and her producer/brother Finneas O’Connell. The two are apparently as much fans of Bond as I am. Here is the result—partake and be pleasured:

Y’know what? I quite like it! It fits in the progression of the latter half of Daniel Craig bond films, Skyfall and SPECTRE. In fact it has a lot in common with Sam Smith’s “The Writing’s on the Wall” from the latter film. “No Time to Die” is darkly lush, a song ultimately about betrayal and defeat (which seems to fit what little we’ve seen of the film from its trailers). There are some great moments: the wet, Bond-ian brass that creeps into the background for a moment around the 1-minute mark; the guitar that comes in on the chorus about 1:35; the full orchestration that starts building up around the two-minute mark. In all it’s a great variation of a “building” song, where over time more and more elements seep into the initially sparse presentation. But “No Time to Die” is interesting in that it undercuts moments of possible cathartic crescendo, like the way Eilish hits the climactic high-note about 3:20, only to slide down into a lower note before it ends, as if resigned to defeat. And then all the building cuts out and the song ends as sparsely and darkly as it began.

Am I reading too much into it? Probably. But it is well done. I hope you have been pleasured by it.

Categories: Movies, Music, Wednesday Listening Pleasure.

Monday, 17 February 2020

TV Review: Kipo and the Age of Wonderbeasts

Kipo and the Age of Wonderbeasts

CAPTION

Kipo and the Age of Wonderbeasts is a very enjoyable if slightly uneven Young-Adult Sci-Fi cartoon. More… »

Categories: Cartoons, Reviews, TV Reviews.

Wednesday, 12 February 2020

For Your Wednesday Listening Pleasure: “Different Windows” by Smokey Brights

Smokey Brights Different Windows

Is this the kind of monster that you need…

Thanks once again to Eva & Cedric, the Walker Twins of The Black Tones, and their music video show Video Bebop for once again introducing me to an amazing music video that I’d have otherwise probably never seen! (Seriously, you should watch new Video Bebops whenever they are released).

This time it’s local (of course) band Smokey Brights. I’m pretty sure I’ve seen them live at some point. But anyway, “Different Windows” is a fantastic song. It’s gots groooove to it. And the video is hilarious, full of dime-store costumes and bored musicians on their cell phones, all with a wonderful 80s VHS vibe to it. Partake and be pleasured:

You have now been smokily pleasured!

Categories: Music, Videos, Wednesday Listening Pleasure.