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Matt’s Top 25 Favorite Cover Songs: #19- No Quarter coverd by Tool


Salival+ToolEven though I partake in herbal relaxation from time to time, my days of being a stoner are behind me.  But while I left most of the lifestyle that came with the stigma behind, my love of the psychedelic music I loved to listen to while under the influence has never gone away.  I still find that the trippy music is able to completely able to engage me and send my mind into that nice transcendental place I enjoy so much.  Simply put, it’s great music to relax to.

One of my favorite tracks to zone out to has always been Led Zeppelin’s “No Quarter”.  The wintery atmosphere, shifting moods, the colorful tones, and the thought provoking lyrics all add up to make this particular tunes one of Zeppelin’s best.  As far as my interpretation of the song, it deals with the British during the American Revolution.  When settlers refused a British soldier a place to stay and food to eat the settler was shown no quarter, which is also a way of saying no mercy.  This was a tactic used by the British to try to force their way into a position of power through fear.  But I feel that the song goes deeper than that, acting more as a commentary on the fear mongering primarily found in religion and politics.  And with a deeper meaning pointing to questioning religion and politics, what better band than one that is consistently asking their listeners to dig deep below the borderline and open up their minds and question everything.

Being a band that rarely ever does cover material, Tool completely rock “No Quarter”‘s socks off.  Retaining that psychedelic feel of the original, even making it more trippy, they add a layer of heaviness that increases the depth of the song ten-fold.  What really gets me about this cover is how much more fitting I feel Tool’s approach to the music compliments the lyrical themes.  Even more frozen and saddened than the original they really give the feeling a British soldier must have refused room and board.  And when the heavy kicks in it better personifies his rage.  The trippy sections serve to convey the fact that the protagonist is not of sound mind when looking to execute ‘no quarter’.  All in all, this is one of the few covers of majorly influential songs that I find I enjoy much better than the already excellent original.  Enjoy!!  Peace Love and Metal!!!

“No Quarter”

Close the door, put out the light.
You know they won’t be home tonight.
The snow falls hard and don’t you know?
The winds of Thor are blowing cold.
They’re wearing steel that’s bright and true
They carry news that must get through.

They choose the path where no-one goes.

They hold no quarter.

Walking side by side with death, The devil mocks their every step
The snow drives back the foot that’s slow, The dogs of doom are howling more
They carry news that must get through, To build a dream for me and you

They choose the path where no-one goes.

They hold no quarter. They ask no quarter.
The pain, the pain without quarter.
They ask no quarter.
The dogs of doom are howling more!

Tool Version:

Original Led Zeppelin Version:

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Matt’s Top 100 Favorite Albums of All Time: #15-#11


Over on my favorite forum for rambling about metal, The History of Metal (it’s an open Facebook forum, so anyone, meaning you, can join and flap your jaw about metal with a wide variety of metalheads from all over the world), the admin made a challenge to all the members to create their top 100 albums of all time. Loving making lists I’m all on this. Between the ~1500 albums I have there is a lot to filter through and this has turned into quite a daunting, yet fun, challenge. This list will represent where I am with my favorite albums right now, if I were to do this last year or next year, while being similar, I’m sure there would be lots of differences. My only self-imposed limitation on this is I’m confining each band 3 albums in the list to avoid entire, very large, discographies over saturating it. Every 5 days or so I’ll make a post with the next 5 entries into the list. Fellow bloggers, I extend this challenge to you (and be sure to let me know where and when you’ll be posting it, I’d love to read it), and for readers without a blog join up with THOM and post yours there! Enjoy!!! Peace Love and Metal!!!

#15 Colors by Between the Buried and Me

In the early and mid 2000’s I found myself a bit disenchanted with new metal. I had kept in touch with the established bands in my catalog, but anything new just ‘didn’t do it for me’. Then I stumbled on BTBAM and their newly released Colors. Never have I heard metal quite like this, ferocious, complex, organic, beautiful, chaotic, and so unorthodox. How each song flowed into the next created a neat flow and the musicianship in each one seriously blew my mind and gave me a new-found faith in modern metal. I also love while on one end the music and themes on this record are pretty serious, the band knows how to sit back and have some fun at times and get playful with the music breaking that ‘more brutal than thou’ mentality that was plaguing metal at the time in my eyes. After this record I became more adventurous with my music returning to actively seek out/check out music by stuff I never heard of in hopes I find something that blew me away like Colors. To quote Forrest Gump: “I must have drank me 15 Dr. Peppers”. Returning to this album 7 years after my big first impression it still holds up wonderfully and BTBAM received much deserved success and took the right path and upped their talent (seriously, check out the new record 😉 ).

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Matt’s Top 100 Favorite Albums of All Time: #25-#21


Over on my favorite forum for rambling about metal, The History of Metal (it’s an open Facebook forum, so anyone, meaning you, can join and flap your jaw about metal with a wide variety of metalheads from all over the world), the admin made a challenge to all the members to create their top 100 albums of all time. Loving making lists I’m all on this. Between the ~1500 albums I have there is a lot to filter through and this has turned into quite a daunting, yet fun, challenge. This list will represent where I am with my favorite albums right now, if I were to do this last year or next year, while being similar, I’m sure there would be lots of differences. My only self-imposed limitation on this is I’m confining each band 3 albums in the list to avoid entire, very large, discographies over saturating it. Every 5 days or so I’ll make a post with the next 5 entries into the list. Fellow bloggers, I extend this challenge to you (and be sure to let me know where and when you’ll be posting it, I’d love to read it), and for readers without a blog join up with THOM and post yours there! Enjoy!!! Peace Love and Metal!!!

#25 Sailing the Seas of Cheese by Primus

As I look back at the Excel file with my ‘list’ on it one common theme that seems to be running through a large part of the albums is that they all include well pronounced bass and rhythm sections. One could argue that having heavy bass dulls down the music and muddies up the intricacies, but I digress and say that some well used bass adds a nice full body to the music that makes it even more tastier. Like a good whiskey, wine, beer, or woman. When it comes to bassists, one of the most skilled and eclectic that will come to many’s mind is Les Claypool. What that man has done with the low-end tones is unique to say the least, but as well as being a titan on the bass he also is a damn fine songwriter/storyteller/lyricist and collaborator. Without the aid of the other 2 members of Primus the complexities of his style wouldn’t come to fruition. Larry LaLonde’s trippy and shredy guitars work wonders when paired with Les’ groove accentuating rather than carrying. And to keep up with the insanity of Claypool a damn fine drummer is needed, and Tim Alexander’s jazz beats dance in tandem with the quirky bass. While the trio have released some damn fine albums, their second full length collects the best the band has to offer in one package. Not a stinker or a dull moment the whole record and this is always the Primus record I cram down everyone’s throat when they tell me they never listened to Primus. So, if you enjoy some thick bass in your music and for some strange reason never heard Primus before, I implore you to go get your hands on this album right now.

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Reggie’s Top 100 Favorite Albums of All Time #90-86


Continuing on with our Top 100 list at The History of Metal, I bring you my next five with a little bit of justification.  If you haven’t checked out The History of Metal or THOM as we call it, please do it’s a cool forum to talk about and share metal.  The page creator does a great job as keeping topics fresh and he also takes the time to pose challenges to the group; Top 100 Albums being one of them.  I think the best part of this whole challenge besides getting to see everyone else’s choices is to reminisce about why I love these albums so much.  It gets me listening to some of these I haven’t heard in a while.  Not to mention, seeing everyone elses favorites gets me to explore some things I haven’t heard yet.  Enjoy!

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Themed Thursday – Metal Meets The Zodiac


I am not one to normally contemplate my astrology reading of the day.  I do find them interesting at times and often accurate, but sometimes these things can be so vague that they apply to almost anyone.  As we know, signs of the Zodiac are represented by symbols, elements, planets, and stones.  Why not metal bands?  If you know your sign, you should know what band applies to you.  This is what my research for this theme of the week is going to do.  No longer will you have to say you are Aries symbolized by the ram.  Now, you can say I am Aries represented by Arch motherfucking Enemy.  Here is my breakdown of what band should represent you and your astrological sign.

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Album Review – Soen – Cognitive


In music it is very common to hear a band take a style set by another popular band and expand on it.  This method leads to the constant evolution and maturation of the medium and often time leads to truly original combinations of styles that create wonderful and unique music.  With their immense popularity and following one band that I am surprised to have not heard anyone expand on their unique style is Tool.  Their tribal drumming and mesmerizing bass lines infused with cosmic guitar playing, powerful singing, and philosophical lyrics seemed like a style that many musicians would be thriving to expand upon, but no, that never really happened and the only band that I can say sounds like Tool is Tool.  Well that would have been until I came across Soen and their debut album Cognitive.

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Song of the Week – 46 & 2


Let’s get your brain running a bit today with some Tool.  The main theme in “46 & 2” off the album Ænima revolves around the idea of evolving into the next and higher state of being.  At one time humans had 44 chromosomes, those were the aboriginal people of the world and some can be found today in secluded or undiscovered aboriginal tribes.  These people can be described as those whose conscious don’t see anything outside of themselves.  With our modern evolution right now, we have 46 chromosomes, and we have evolved from the ideals of our former and our conscious certainly perceive things outside of ourselves.  The next step of evolution would likely bring about a cosmic conscious where the chromosome count would be 48, or 46 & 2.

The songs heavy focus on ‘shadow’ is derived from Carl Jung’s theories.  The shadow is basically everything about that is unseen that you are uncomfortable with or hate. This is also known as the Anima (hence the name of the album).  Jung believed that one can not make the jump to the next level of evolution without first going inside yourself cleansing the negativity of your conscious and subconscious.  This ‘dirt’ is referred to as ‘the shadow’.

‘Picking scabs’ is also referenced a lot in the song.  That could be easily summed up as not allowing or refraining from healing wounds, emotionally speaking.  Without the wounds healed, the next jump into higher being can not be done.  The same could be said for Maynard reference to ‘muscle memory’.  We will follow what is natural and react to things based on what has happened in the past.  One needs to overcome this ‘muscle memory’ to achieve true cleansing.

And to sum it up neatly, the song, to me, is about being open-minded, accepting change.  What are your thoughts and theories?  Let’s hear them.  And enjoy the awesome song!! Peace Love and Metal!!!

My shadow’s

Shedding skin and
I’ve been picking
Scabs again.
I’m down
Digging through
My old muscles
Looking for a clue.

I’ve been crawling on my belly
Clearing out what could’ve been.
I’ve been wallowing in my own confused,
insecure delusions
For a piece to cross me over
Or a word to guide me in.
I wanna feel the changes coming down.
I wanna know what I’ve been hiding in

My shadow.
Change is coming through my shadow.
My shadow’s shedding skin
I’ve been picking
My scabs again.

I’ve been crawling on my belly
Clearing out what could’ve been.
I’ve been wallowing in my own chaotic,
insecure delusions.

I wanna feel the change consume me,
Feel the outside turning in.
I wanna feel the metamorphosis and
Cleansing I’ve endured within

My shadow
Change is coming.
Now is my time.
Listen to my muscle memory.
Contemplate what I’ve been clinging to.
Forty-six and two ahead of me.

I choose to live and to
Grow, take and give and to
Move, learn and love and to
Cry, kill and die and to
Be paranoid and to
Lie, hate and fear and to
Do what it takes to move through.

I choose to live and to
Lie, kill and give and to
Die, learn and love and to
Do what it takes to step through.

See my shadow changing,
Stretching up and over me.
Soften this old armor.
Hoping I can clear the way
By stepping through my shadow,
Coming out the other side.
Step into the shadow.
Forty six and two are just ahead of me.

Do You Like Tool/A Perfect Circle and Opeth?


If you find yourself digging on bands like Tool and A Perfect Circle you need to know about Soen.  Check out the video below for “Savia” from their debut album Cognitive.  There is a heavy Maynard James Keenan influence in the music, almost to the point of a rip off, but damn, it’s awesome.  It’s not like we’re going to hear anything new from Tool for a while (I do hope I’m wrong about that one).  Oh, and this is the new home of ex-Opeth drummer Martin Lopez and bassis Steve DiGiorgio of Testament/Death.  Expect a review of the album as soon as I get my hands on it which should be very soon.

Cognitive is going to be released Feb. 13, 2012 in Europe and is set to hit the States Feb. 21, 2012.

iTouch Report – September 2011


This month has been an exciting month for metal.  My iTouch has been busy playing a wide variety of music; old, but mostly new.  Unfortunately, there wasnt enough time for the counter to rack up counts on some of the most recent releases such as Opeth and Machine Head or even Dream Theater.  This month I will list my top 10 bands/albums instead of songs like I normally do. 

10.  Tool – Aenima

9.  Anthrax – Worship Music

8.  Porcupine Tree – In Absentia

7.  Six Feet Under – Bringer of Blood

6.  The Sword – Warp Riders

5.  Dream Theater – A Dramatic Turn of Events

4.  Megadeth – Endgame

3.  Jasta – Jasta

2.  Chimaira – The Age of Hell

1.  Trivium – In Waves

In Waves turned out to be a good album to workout to, so I can see why that one got so many plays, so much more than the rest.  I am not sure how Jasta got so many plays because I don’t remember intentionally listening to them that much.  So what have you been listening to lately?  For it’s been nonstop Machine Head.  I am sure that will reflect in the October iTouch report.

Theme Thursday- Prog Metal


This week I’d like to discuss what might be my favorite subgenre of metal, Prog Metal(Progressive Metal).  The most typical way to describe a prog metal band would be to say that their music consists of long and complicated structures and often use odd time signatures and beats.  Another common similarity in prog metal bands is they tend to favor longer songs to allow the music to expand(“progress”) and often carry a theme through out an entire album.  While many bands that find themselves in the genre often do use those elements, they often do not also.  Many bands in artist in this genre also incorporate many other styles of playing into their metal and fit in a huge amount of diverse sounds and techniques.  With all this diversity going on it’s near impossible to truly classify a band as a prog metal band, so my rule of thumb is if a band is eschewing common song structure(ie. verse chorus verse chorus bridge solo ect.) and pushing the envelope of musical boundaries, it’s prog.  Modern bands that fit the prog metal bill quite nicely are bands such as Dream Theater, Opeth, Pain of Salvation, Porcupine Tree, and Queensryche.

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