Friday, July 12, 2013

Album Review: Pamela Moore, Resurrect Me: Badass by Design!

I have to start this review with a confession. I can't believe it, but this is the first album I have ever bought with a female singer. That's right. I never bought a Joan Jett, Lita Ford, Warlock, Femme Fatale, Vixen, or any other album with a female singer. NO, I am not sexist at all. I liked the music of the bands I mentioned, but for some reason, I never bought an album. 

Its probably best that I didn't. Pamela Moore's Resurrect Me on Rat Pak Records is amazing. Amy Lee and Evanescence should sit up and take notice. Pamela and her band are showing you how it should be done! 

All I had heard from Pamela prior to this album was her part in Suite Sister Mary from Queensryche's Operation: Mindcrime. A completely epic song, which made me fall in love with her unique voice. I love the shrieks at the end of the lines that she does. I always have. Pamela is cemented in the history of Queensryche, and she even appeared at Queensryche's album release party unannounced to sing Suite Sister Mary with Todd LaTorre. It was freaking awesome. Listen to the crowd when she takes the stage! She is loved and adored by the fans, and rightfully so. Her voice is beauty, power, lust, and grace all rolled into one.


Bands like Halestorm have lately shown that the ladies know how to rock! Lizzy Hale's glass shattering screeching and powerful vocals have shown that vocal ability and power is not dead. Now, enter Pamela Moore who takes this ability and makes it into an art form. 

Her album, Resurrect Me is one of quite a few heavy hitting metal albums to be released in 2013. This year seems to be a good year for metal. Look it up if you don't believe me. Aside from Pamela, Alice in Chains, Black Sabbath with Ozzy, Queensryche, and several others all released albums that kicked ass. 2013 has been the best year for metal in a long time. 

I was first introduced to this album by her single, Paranoia

The video was released on social media, and I was immediately interested. The guitar is deep and heavy, with a touch of classic Prog metal, and a modern feel. The vocals are what I was hoping for. She hasn't lost a lick! Her voice is strong and beautiful. Its complete with the shrieks from her that I love so much.

A couple months later, I heard the title track. Pamela's record label, Rat Pak released it on  their website, Resurrect Me. Click here to hear it!  

That song blew me away. It starts as a ballad, but slams into a pure metal song. I swear the keyboard blast at the beginning of the fast segment reminds me of a movie soundtrack. Not sure, but I remember a similar track that is played at the end of a horror or thriller movie. If someone could tell me what movie I am thinking of, I would greatly appreciate it! EDIT: It was the closing music from the TV series 'Fringe'

But, that song punched me in the face, and forced me to buy the album. I downloaded it from Google Play. There are 10 songs, and I like 9.5 of them, meaning that I like everything except for the second half of one of the songs. In other words, the album exceeded my expectations, in every way.
This isn't just a metal album. This is a metal album that will grab you by your throat, and shake you until your toenails pop off! Not a bad song on it, and all of them could be singles on their own.
The vocals being great is a no brainer, but the guitar is enormous. Its deep, dark, and gritty. In fact, all of the instruments on this album are top caliber. The cohesion of the musicians makes you believe that the lineup has been together for years. (Maybe they have. I don't know.)

I have several favorite tracks on this album. The title track, Resurrect Me, Wide Awake, and Melt into You. Although there is not a bad cut on the album.  I mentioned a half song that I didn't care for, and that is Awaken. But, I did like the first half of the song! 

The whole album is a gothic/progressive assault on the senses. The song titles would seem to indicate a concept album about vampires, but I don't know if this is the case or not. I've only listened to it about 5 times, and the lyrics haven't sunk in just yet...But, they are getting there. I went to bed last night with Paranoia in my head. 

If you're looking for something soft, you're looking in the wrong place. This album is heavy. Pamela shows she can not only play with the boys, she can also play harder. This album is better than anything currently on the radio, and I'm including bands like Disturbed in this statement. Yep. Pamela Moore has released an album that is better than Disturbed, which is probably the top current rock/metal band right now. Even the 2 ballads (Breaking Down and Wide Awake) are hauntingly powerful. 

The tracks are:
1, Acquiescent
2, Melt Into You
3, Paranoia
4, We Are Damaged
5, Resurrect Me
6, The Sky is Falling
7, Awaken
8, Breaking Down
9, Desperate by Design
10, Wide Awake (Phoenix Rising)

I give this album 4.5 out of 5 stars. Go and get the album right now, and prepare to be rocked in ways that you haven't been rocked in a while. You will not be disappointed. And if you are, well then you probably suck and are a Justin Bieber fan. 

In August, I had the honor of interviewing Pamela. Check it out here! 

On her official website, she mentions that she gives vocal lessons. I may at some point take her up on that. I could use some help getting my vocal range back to what it was in 2002. 

Monday, July 8, 2013

Quitting Smoking SUCKS...A Smoker's Story

Ok, let me first let you know that I am a 25 year smoker who is on day 3 without a cigarette. I admit, I'm pretty antsy right now, but its all good. Hopefully, this will translate into a better blog post because I AM THERE right now, and I want to rip someone's head off! But, I must admit, I am cheating. I'm using Ecigs. I'll tell you the brand later, but first before people call me a fraud because I'm using Ecigs, let me tell you this...Ecigs give you the same amount of nicotine as the patch or nicotine gum. And, if you've ever been around someone on either of those products, you know they don't work very well. The main reason is because they do not deposit the nicotine where you need it...Your lungs! I've tried nicotine gum and the patch. They did not work at all because while I could feel that there was nicotine in my system, I was still burning for it in my lungs.

But before we get into Ecigs, I am going to go on a rant about non smokers, and how they treat smokers. Smokers have been reduced in stature to below that of a Muslim terrorist. Case in point: I was at an Atlanta Falcons football game back in 2005. The Falcons have a smoking section outside the stadium, but that isn't what I am talking about. After the game was over, I got outside the stadium. This game was in October, and in Atlanta, its still pretty warm. I came out, and lit up a smoke. Instantly, there were people around me fake coughing. I ignored them, but the person I did not ignore was wearing a turban, a multi layered winter coat, and had a full beard, and was standing alone. NO ONE other than me noticed this guy. I got the hell out of there, and as I went, I heard people yelling at me, saying that I was damn right for getting my filthy smoking ass out of there.

I am glad this guy was not a terrorist, but can you imagine if he had been, and blew himself up? All those people who were judging me about being a smoker, and cheering when I rushed out of there would have been dead. My point about all of this is that there are MUCH worse people out there than smokers.

Need I remind you that smoking is LEGAL in this country? However, crossing the border without a passport is illegal, and most of these politicians who want to gouge the smokers with taxes as punishment for smoking seem to have no problem when it comes to illegal aliens...or should I say future Democrats BREAKING the law to come into the country. They have no problem wiping their ass with the constitution if it means more votes for them.

That brings me to the biggest hypocrite of them all...President Barack Hussein Obama. In the campaign for his first election, he swore that he would not raise taxes on the middle class or poor people. THE FIRST THING HE DID while in office was to sign a bill that doubled the price of cigarettes. And, HE IS A SMOKER!!! (or he was when he was elected, and signed that bill. Not sure if he quit smoking or not.)

That was a tax increase, you asshole!

Not to mention the fact that smokers have to stand outside, and listen to snide remarks from the enlightened nonsmokers as they walk by. One time, I lost it. I was in a designated smoking area outside a mall that I worked in. A man and a 10 year old girl walked by. There was a no smoking sign on the entrance to the mall. The girl fake coughed, and asked her dad what the sign said. The dad laughed, and said that "that guy must not know how to read." I flipped, and said that I was sitting in a designated smoking area, and that I didn't appreciate them talking about me like that. The father gave me his wounded liberal response, asking me how dare I talk to him like that. I asked him "Oh, what? You're offended? I'm in a designated smoking area, and YOU and your daughter are the aggressors here." He just mumbled something and went inside.

That is what smokers have to put up with. Its ridiculous. Do you non smokers realize how much YOUR taxes would increase if tobacco was suddenly declared illegal, and the government lost all that tax revenue from smokers? You spiteful, hateful, holier than thou nonsmokers should be thanking smokers for voluntarily paying that extra tax!

While I want to become a nonsmoker, I will never look at a smoker as a second class citizen, which is what many who have never smoked do. 

Quitting smoking is VERY hard to do. I made it a week once. And after a week, you have done it. You're home free, but some friends asked me if I wanted to go to a bar. I agreed, drank a beer, and another one...OOPS! 

So, here I am, quitting smoking. I have been getting some warning signs like pain while breathing. That was enough. I'm done. But, I'm smoking Ecigs, and they are helping. 

Most people don't realize that smokers are addicted to many other things than just nicotine. There are many other chemicals in cigarettes that are addictive. Believe it or not, you are also addicted to the SMOKE itself.

So, let's go to my current situation. As I mentioned, nicotine gum and the patch don't work. You will still crave the feeling in your lungs. Enter Ecigs. Its just water vapor with nicotine. My theory is simple. Use Ecigs until you've broken the addiction to all the other crap in cigarettes. Once you've done that, back off of the Ecigs until you're free! Its just like the directions on nicotine gum or the patch. Except like I said, with Ecigs, you are getting the nicotine where you need it. 

They taste the best, and have the strongest nicotine available that I've seen, at 2.4%. nicotine. I'm drinking tonight as I write this, on day 3 without a cigarette, and I'm doing just fine. Want to quit smoking? Find an Ecig that works for you. Use it for a couple weeks to get rid of all the other crap in your body from cigarettes. Then, back off the Ecig. All the brands have different levels of nicotine to step down to.
Wish me good luck, and I wish you good luck too!
EDIT, a year later, I picked the habit up again, and haven't been able to stop. Ecigs didn't work this time. Dammit. I suck.