Music Review – Stonerider – Hologram

Score – 4.5 outta 5

Rock ‘n’ roll is coming back, but it won’t be heard on the radio – not yet at least.

One of the bands bringing the blues infused rock back is a hidden gem named Stonerider. The boys in the Georgia based band have evolved from many different types of rock. Coming to the scene in 2008, they released Three Legs Of Trouble, which was a AC/DC – Jet inspired cock rock. Four years later they released the timeless Fountains Left To Wake which rekindled early 70’s – late 60’s rock. It’s classic tone and rock piano let listeners know they weren’t just a group with rock in them. They were a band with deep substance and roots into the soul.

What would they do next? Would they even put out another album? Surviving as an independent band is so difficult.

Another four years later, Hologram is released.

Stonerider has gone from cock rock, to soulful rock, to now, Pink Floyd-esque, organ blairing, vocal harmonizing rock. They’re proving again that whatever they set their minds to, they do it right.

Make no mistake that these guys are a rip off of whoever they are inspired by.

The title song is an awakening to what rock was intended to be. It’s not about sounding as heavy as possible, having tough guy vibes. It’s soul, it’s something you feel inside your chest when you hear that organ or guitar rip around, not for the sake of doing so, but stirring something inside. Drive around open roads in the middle of the night and listen to this album.

Highlight songs are War, Traffic, And Blind Faith, Your Chains, The Great Divide, and Undertow.

They play cock rock better than Jet, early rock to match bands like Kadavar or Horisont, and they released an album unrivaled by modern rock.

I can only hope the world is gifted by another album in the future.

Check this one out on their bandcamp and buy the CD.

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Walter Died

This here is Walter, say hi.

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So I totaled my car the other day. Without going into the menial details, it wasn’t my fault and thankfully the insurance companies agree. However I found, and find myself rather sad about saying goodbye to my friend Walter. Yes, his name is Walter. Yes, it’s a HE.

Insert insecure gay joke here because I named my car a guy’s name…

But I’m curious to know how naming an inanimate object somehow gives it personality. Why am I attached to a car? I gave it the name Walter and assigned it a personality that doesn’t exist. I imagined the car having a mind of its own, fighting through the hot and cold seasons just to get me to where I needed to go when in reality it was just a series of metal and plastic pieces with no heart at all.

Is it because I’m a writer that I pretend to personalize a car? Is it because I’m young? I know I’m not the only young person to name a car or get hung over one when it gets trashed.

I call it a combination of the two, which is a double whammy unfortunately for myself. I think younger people are searching for so many things that they name vehicles to fill a void that hasn’t been filled by something more significant yet. Either that – or they do it because they’re bored.

I can only look at myself as an example. I’m single, besides my writing career which is taking its sweet time getting started, I work a crappy job and still struggle to support myself. There is a lot to be desired in my life. I have long friendships that blossomed in adolescent life, but in the shadow of adulthood, are dwindling down to but embers.

I took pictures of Walter because I wanted to remember him and the memories we shared. I had many life changing conversations and experiences within him. I went on my only vacation with my best friend and drove to Kentucky on 3 hours of sleep. I drove to North Carolina to meet my brother on a whim and went to countless shows. I took pretty girls on dates and got to fog up the windows on a few occasions. From my perspective, I should feel a degree of friendship with the car. I spent fragile years of my life with him. He was my bro. And in the end, he protected me when someone decided to be Pennsylvania’s dumbest driver.

People don’t do these things later in their life because they have filled those voids. Maybe my next car will have a name, maybe it won’t. I can only assume that when I have a car that doesn’t have a name, it means I’ve moved on to some degree.

But I’m young, and I’m a writer. I like adventure; anything to make life more interesting than it is. So here’s to you Walter, you magnificent bastard – here’s to the years I spent trying to figure myself out with you.

RIP

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The Revival Of Horror Movies & Why The Conjuring Is At The Forefront

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The industry of horror movies thrived in the 70’s and parts of the 80’s creating some of the greatest movies in the genre to date. The Exorcist, The Amityville Horror, Rosemary’s Baby just pick any and run with it.

Then the 90’s happened. Slasher movies replaced authentic horror movies. Along with these bad movies that passed their way through theaters with as much blood as they could manage, so did jump scares. Jump scares have taken the place where real suspense used to be. Even now, jump scares are some of the only scares you will find in many horror movies. Let’s get this straight right now – jump scares aren’t horror. It’s cheap, and manufactured scares. If a movie can’t get the hair on your arms and neck raised without having something jump in front of you and some orchestra of violins or a mass of drums beating in the midst of silence, then the movie has failed at what it set out to do. The worst part about all of this is the fact that people have mistaken real horror movies for these cheap productions that are only made to make a quick profit.

When was the last time a horror movie was praised on a story and not how many times it made someone jump? Movies like The Apparition, Annabelle, The Unborn, Halloween II and so many others are just profit machines. When did you enjoy a horror movie for the story, the acting, and the genuine horror and suspense experience it gave you?

This is why horror is in need of revival, and James Wan is the reason why such a revival is occurring. In 2010, Insidious came and woke up the dying genre. Insidious featured a unique story that has never or rarely been seen before – at least to my knowledge. A boy falls asleep one night and just doesn’t wake up. There are so many reasons why this movie stands above.

  1. No exorcism: A climax of a horror movie featuring an exorcism isn’t necessarily a bad thing, however it’s been overdone and executed in mediocre ways at best. It’s expected and doesn’t do too much for most movies.
  2. No troubling past ridden priest: The Exorcist is the only movie that should be able to use this theme. Everything after is just copying a great movie.
  3. Outstanding acting: Patrick Wilson, Rose Byrne, and scream queen Lin Shaye played their parts flawlessly.
  4. James Wan: His direction is heavily influenced by classic horror. There’s no false scares, and limited jump scares.

Now while Insidious still had some jump scares, the movie doesn’t rely on them. No horror movie nowadays will be completely void of them. But the score of the movie accompanies it, it doesn’t run it. The sequels are also fantastic.

But let’s get on to the reason I decided to write about this…

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The Conjuring hit theaters in 2013 to set a new bar for horror movies to achieve. But why does The Conjuring shine above the rest, against other impressive movies such as Insidious, Sinister, Oculus and…..…oh…….. there aren’t any more well done horror movies recently. Still, the question remains: why is it better?

  1. Enthralling story: After beginning on a chilling note, the movie takes its time getting to the horror aspect. It reminds people that it is a movie just like any other and just because it’s horror, doesn’t mean you shouldn’t care about the characters. It gives the viewer ample time to know the characters, the family and sympathize with their story and situation. Let’s not ignore the fact that the movie had several children whom none of which were annoying or obnoxious. They were realistic, scared girls living in a haunted house.
  2. Twist on a common theme: Haunted house. It’s been done, it’s been murdered to death twice. However, The Conjuring puts a twist on the overdone “Somebody died here X amount of years ago and now they haunt these rooms.” A witch, pledging their soul to Satan and becoming a demon? Count me in.
  3. Realism: No matter what, horror movies will always be Hollywood versions of the real thing (if you believe in actual possessions and occurrences). But of all the horror movies out there now, The Conjuring’s evil and action scenes are believable – at least compared to others.
  4. REAL HORROR: This is quite possibly the most important reason why The Conjuring is the top in its genre. You know you have something special when you’re halfway through a horror movie and you haven’t seen any special effect/CGI garbage. It’s the fact that there are scenes that you see nothing; no demon, no monster, but you are shaking scared. It’s true suspense that’s not faked and manufactured by jump scares. A perfect example of this is when the one daughter looks underneath her bed…

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What’s your favorite horror movies? Do you agree with this article?

Drop your comments!

Congratulations Giveaway Winners

Well the Infernous giveaway is over and over 500 people entered the contest. 5 winners from across the country now have a copy of Infernous in the mail to enjoy for some pre-Halloween horror.

Thank you everyone for participating in the giveaway, if you would like to buy a copy of Infernous, you can grab is on Amazon for $7.99 print, and 5.99 Kindle. 

Thank you for all your support, and lookout for Infernous II, coming soon.

What Made Me The Way I Am

I always see the absolute best in what a person can be.
It’s the same reason I am consistently disappointed in the worst part that shows.
So many present themselves in such a beautiful way on their media pages.
Underneath they’re hollowed out caverns of a soul.

It makes me wonder what made them that way.
Isn’t that the question for all of us?
Why are you the way you are?
What made me the way I am?

10 Days

It’s been 10 days since my last post.
I’ve been on a mixture of vacation and working 50+ hours a week lately. But I’m back now and we’re gonna get back to normal and the posts will continue.

Thanks for being involved with this site

Thank you for reading
Zac Zinn

When Moonlight Falls

City Jackdaw

I have been sorting through my accumulated clutter, and found this poem which I wrote when I was around nineteen. Oh the days.

When Moonlight Falls

When moonlight falls upon
the garden's shore,
And no slumber can deny
its insistent beams,
She comes, unbidden, 
through locked door.
Wandering purposely 
through his drifting dreams.

She has been present in
every dream he's dreamt,
Invoking a union 
of the mind.
An age of nights, whilst 
sound he slept,
He has lived a life
that transcends time.


©AJM

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