Thursday, March 1, 2012

CD Review: Piranah - Piranah

Piranah - Piranah
Released: 2009
Orchestrated Records

As a heavy metal music lover, I jumped at the chance when Chris Higgins, drummer for Piranah, asked me to review their CD. One of the great things in this day and age of social networking is having an opportunity to review a band that lives in Tennessee when I live in Pennsylvania.

Music City, USA, better known as Nashville, Tennessee conveys notions of The Tennessee State Fair and The Grand Ole Opry. The home of the Country Music Hall of Fame, you would think a metal band in the land of straw hats and honky-tonk would be ostracized. Think again. There is a metal scene in Nashville, and Piranah is right in the middle.

The band hails as “Blue Collar" metal. Their gritty sound is hard and in your face. It is nothing I have heard before, so "blue collar" may be a new genre pioneered by the four guys who make up Piranah.
And yes, that is spelled with the A and H transposed on the end. When I asked the band about the spelling, Matt answered, ""Piranah is spelled different 'cause we didn't want it to be spelled like the fish."

At first I though this was silly. But then, I thought of other bands with "unusual band spellings" like: STAIND, MERCYFUL Fate and Limp BIZKIT. Despite the need for a spelling lesson, these three bands have done very well for themselves.

I asked Chris what some of the bands influences are. He said, "Metal that grooves with a lil thrash like a combo of these bands and a few more- Early Metallica, Megadeth, Pantera, Sabbath, AC/DC, early Motley, BLS, Clutch, Godsmack, Acid Bath, Rush and soooo many more."
Yeah, yeah, but what have they done?

In Nashville they have taken over THE BUZZ (102.9 WBUZ) radio station, winning the Nashville Independent Music Awards in 2011 as well as being crowned the Buzz Battle Champs for three months in a row in 2009.  This feat gained the band into the Local Buzz Hall of Fame. I could list all of the Band Battles and competitions they have kicked ass in... ok. Here goes:

  • 12th most requested band in 2008 in the Middle Tennessee area.
  • 10th most requested band in 2010 in the Middle Tennessee area.
  • won Round 2 in 2011 on (this is a good thing!).
  • placed 17th out of 13,179 artists in the Toyota Music Rock This Space competition.
  • placed 15th out of hundreds of bands across the country in the Project Independent Contest.
But don't take the props from the Tennessee locals word for it, go listen to songs like "Slowly the Rot" which starts off with a funky groove and then slaps you in the face with grizzled vocals and a throaty guitar.  Then check out "All Along (Step by Step)" with a killer bass guitar/drum intro. "Visions of the Damned" slows it down in the middle of the CD.  And isn't always fun when there is a cover song in there somewhere?  Piranah covers Prong's "Snap Your Fingers, Snap Your Neck."  Lead singer Darren Andrews hits four different voices on their version. 

Their self-titled third release (produced by Grammy winner Voytek Kochanek - score!) is available on iTunes. Look for new music from Piranah in the coming year!

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Into The Pit - Philly Metal. Thrash is Back!

I didn't get into heavy metal until my twenties. I did listen to bands like Motley Crue, Judas Priest and Triumph when I was a teenager. Yeah some of them are considered heavy metal - but not all of them.

I have always been a late bloomer - always. Music, make-up, driving. Everything and anything I have ever done I have always done six months to ten years later than the average bear.

It seems that Thrash is back. Thrash innovators like Slayer, old school Metallica, Testament, Exodus and the like kind of disappeared for a while (well - old school Metallica seems gone forever) but they never died. Did they lay dormant? It doesn't matter.

Thrash is back.

Thrash is back and it is everywhere. All over the country. All over the world!
Turn off the damn stations plaguing your ears through the radio in your car or office. They play the same rubbish every forty - sixty minutes. There is good metal music out there. Thrash, Death, Speed - tune into an internet radio station and find that awesome music.

There is a huge music scene in Philadelphia and people need to know about it!

Bands like: Citadel, Faith or Fear, Condition Critical. These are kick ass thrash bands from the Philly area that play their hearts out. Get on Facebook and find them. You can thank me with cookies...

But Darlene! Where can I find a kick ass internet radio station that plays kick ass metal? Well it just so happens my good friends Timm Dougherty & CM started the perfect internet radio show for metal heads everywhere.

Into The Pit Radio plays every Sunday night from 5pm - 8 pm. Kick ass music, band interviews, mayhem and antics. They play slightly popular bands like Slayer, too! Yes. Exhale.. it is true.

Oh! You say you are busy on Sunday night and there is no way in hell you can tune in? Well, just hop your cute butt on over to iTunes and download the Podcast for FREE!!

Yes. free. You can pick yourself up off the floor now.

Stay tuned in the upcoming weeks! I will be covering The Damsels of Darkness tour in March.


Friday, February 3, 2012

New York Motorcycle Show

Sunday, January 22, 2012. A new month, a new year. A bunch of new, bad ass motorcycles at the Progressive Motorcycle Show. We took the train into New York City from Princeton.
The train is the only way to go, really.
So.. without further ado...
Here are some pictures from The Big Apple and the Motorcycle Show.

You can find all of the pictures on my Flickr Page

The crowd was great. I kept forgetting I was in New York and was a little confused at all the Giants jerseys. Fortunately for myself I kept my thoughts to myself.
The train station was interesting. There were a couple guys singing and playing acoustic guitar. I threw a few bucks in the case in front of them. They sounded good. :) I wanted to take their pictures, but my camera battery died. >:(
There was a dude there with at least seventy face piercings. I totally had juice in my camera to get his picture, but my boyfriend felt uncomfortable about me taking his picture. I don't think he'd have minded. I mean, all those face piercings.. if not for attention, then for what?

It was a good time. We went last year too, and will probably make it a yearly thing now. Do you go to shows? Motorcycle? Boat? Car? Gun? Some other kind of shows?

Thanks for stopping by...

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Too Fast... Too Fast For Love!

Yes. I LOVE THE 80's! Motley Crue was one of the first bands I fell in love with that had anything to do with the 80's. I bring this up because I'm not sure if my readers know I have an 80's blog. It is called The Great 80's. Go check it out! A wonderful writer/blogger by the name of Sharon Howard is going to guest post there in February. She will share a fascinating tale of growing up 80's in England! It is such a great story. You will want to read all about it.

Going on this weekend: I am going to the Annual Motorcycle show in New York, NY on Sunday. Be sure to check back for the latest on hot new bikes, gear and gadgets. I'll have plenty of pictures up as well.

This month stay tuned for my guest post over at Marcia Richards' blog. It will be about goals and how to keep it simple. I It is tax season, so you won't be seeing much of me. But know that future blog posts will contain mega content.


I'll see you soon.. until then remember:

It's long road to success... though not always straight! It's important to take it as it comes, but not let it get you down. There is a lesson learned in everything we do. Sometimes those lessons scream at you. Other times, it is a slight whisper. In those times, be sure to stop talking and listen.


Monday, January 2, 2012

Happy New Year Everyone

Yep. I'm sure you don't need me to tell you it is a little more than half way into day 2 of the infamous year 2012.

2012 is infamous because for all of 2011, tales of apocalypses and Hostile Zombie Takeovers plagued the cable networks.
Oh, and how Aliens lived here before we did, or we are aliens, or some crap like that.

So at first I was thinking... I'll quit my job, hike across the country earning a living as an amateur mime with a hat strategically placed in front of me on a street corner while I search for places to hide during the zombie/alien/marshmallow man takeover.

Then I thought.. if I do that, I'll be kicking my own ass on 12/22/12.

My year went like this:
*I celebrated five years of sobriety in May.
*I regained custody of my daughter in June.
*I won a guest blogger spot for Cycle World Magazine for the entire summer as I got to cruise a 2011 Kawasaki Ninja courtesy of said magazine.
*I finished NaNoWriMo in November.

There is some other stuff in there too.. but these are the biggest highlights.

So to start the year off - - -

January 1 - went skiing for the first time.
January 2 - started the revision of my NaNoWriMo work.
January 3 - is a mystery.

Happy New Year you wonderful people you!

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Who Is Ready For Christmas?

As 2011 comes to a close, I have been trying to tie up some loose ends as far as finances and first drafts go.

Yes! I wrote a 50,000 word novel in November for the infamous NaNoWriMo. I met many cool people and learned a few things about what a lot of writers do when rushed for wordage and have no idea what to write.


It's funny to me because I happened to hit my 50,000 word count without a dream sequence, but I want to throw one in there just for the sheer hell of it. I see alot of dreams in movies, and I read them in a lot of books.

At first I had a hard time trying to stay on track because I have a mild undiagnosed version of A.D.D. which gets me acting like a kitty cat and a pen light.

What was that??

Anyway.. I did manage to get a plot idea and ran with it.. I threw my draft in a drawer until January 1, 2012 (which thankfully is a Sunday). I will then go through it with a highlighter and a red pen. I am actually looking forward to going through it because I once read that anyone can write. The real work is in the editing. I have quite a bit of faith that I can pull it off.

Right now I am outlining a memoir type book.

Christmas!! Got almost all the presents I need for my loved ones and co-workers. We got a tree this year. We put the little stuffed penguin under it, we went to the store and got ornaments and pretty lights. And yes, if you look closely at the top of the tree that is Jim Morrison. My daughter made a Jim Morrison tree star!

I didn't even notice it until she said something and I cracked up. Only my sixteen year old daughter would think of putting Jim Morrison on the top of a Christmas Tree! I still am a littel floored that my teenage daughter is so in love with many of the bands from the early 70's. I mean, I was at her age as well (I grew up in the 80's). I loved Zeppelin, Pink Floyd, The Doors, Hendrix... I loved them all. My parents listened to all of that stuff so I by default did as well. I guess the default carries from generation to generation.

So Happy Holidays to everyone. I hope you get everything you ask for! May you and your family be blessed in the coming year.

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Whatcha Gonna Do?

Tomorrow is my last vacation day of the year. I always take my last day in October. There is something about the early stages of fall that I am in love with.

I will have the house to myself from approximately 7:30 am until 3:00 pm.

In this time I plan on doing much writing. I am also going to put together a reasonable writing schedule. I always wind up making a schedule I cannot stick to and then feel deflated when I don't meet my goals.

I will keep my goals small and attainable. If I surpass them... yay me.

This week we bought a really nice camera off I am excited about this! I love photography and prefer adding my own pictures to my blogs as opposed to pictures I find off the web. I always feel so dirty about adding web pictures. I mean, I am using someone's hard work for my own gain. The photographers are impossible to contact and when I manage to contact someone, they take a long time to get back to me... if they ever get back to me at all.

I like taking pictures of architecture and nature. I am not big into photographing people. This picture is from a church in Pennsylvania. We call it the "Pyramid Church" because of all the buildings that look like this. My friend Joe went to one of the sermons there a while back. All he could say was that it was "interesting." Now, the sermon does not take place in one of these actual pyramids. How cramped would that be?

I mostly like old dilapidated buildings. People ask me why. I don't have an answer. Who really has an answer for the odd things we like.

The other night I was sitting on the step, smoking a cigarette when I heard this loud fluttering. Suddenly, something was sitting on my chest with prickly feet. I looked down to see a huge Praying Mantis. They are supposed to be good luck or something.

That would be nice.