Lil Eazy E Live @Tony V’s Garage 11/15/19

This is my second time seeing Lil Eazy-E perform live and he didn’t disappoint at all this time either. Pretty cool seeing DJ Yella up there spinning for his late homie’s son as well. This was my first time seeing a show at this venue and I really liked it. Easy to get to in downtown Everett as much as I dislike Everett it was setup well. Long hallway with a bar as you walk in with pool tables to the side. Also a chain-link fence area for the VIP side where the opening artists were at. The stage is easy to see with the dance floor sunk in which is how it should be. They had about a million openers before he came on which they should not do that as people are hammered by the time the headlining artist comes on. Either way Lil E demanded attention as he came on, doing all of his Dad’s famous classic tracks including Fuck the Police and Boyz in the Hood. His last show I attended he did “Real Motherfuckin G’s” along side BG Knocc out so maybe without him he didn’t want to do that song again. Still his presence was on point as if the real Eazy-E never left. Lil Eazy E himself looks exactly like his Dad only bigger and probably a much more smiley attitude. Lil E was a nice guy last time I met him and I showed him the picture we all had together with his Grandma (Eazy E’s Mom) which seemed to really impact Lil E seeing a pic of all of us. Genuine guy and DJ Yella played his OG style in the back like he always does. I told Yella he looks younger since the last time I saw him and he laughs as my friend shouts black don’t crack. I think it’s always a nice compliment for people to hear that. We all kicked it for a bit backstage talking stories of music and future venues. All in all well worth the drive to whack ass Everett. Lil Eazy E is well worth seeing at any venue as he is the son of the Godfather of Gangster Rap.

TroyBoi Live @Showbox Sodo 11/14/19

The was one of my first times seeing a show like this. I was at a Kaskade show some yrs ago that had electronic dance music but I still feel like this was more a first for a show like this. Showbox Sodo is perfect for EDM style shows as it’s a big venue but not overly huge with plenty of area to get up front. I never heard of this guy but went with a crew of friends all in light-up glasses so we could find each other if we got lost in the crowd. (I was the only one to still have my glasses on/working and intact by the end of the night). What was cool about this TroyBoi artist was that he had a hip-hop influence on his music so even though you had sections on a loop of hip-hop noises it was blended into dance music in a really artistic way. I was also happy with the crowd because everyone was so nice. I usually go to hip-hop/rap shows and when you bump into people or step on shoes it could be your face that pays the price. At this show we bumped into many folks in the mosh pit as we walked through the crowd like the movie “belly” when they walked into the nightclub with glow-in-the dark contacts. Meaning we walked through everyone as a unit of light-up faces that even EDM heads had to look and stare. I am very certain about 90% of the folks were on some type of drugs there to produce such care-free joy but if you are drinking alcohol you are on a drug too technically. Either way it was a fun show and I would do EDM shows again as well as see this artist again. We ran into him at Trinity Nightclub after the show and exchanged a few chats about the show. I was surprised to hear a UK accent but equally impressed of how humble TroyBoi was and thankful that I tried a new type of music genre to attend.

Upgrade Movie (2018)

How appropriate I post this directly after my recent Terminator Dark Fate post. In the Terminator Series we understood how scary it could be if machines were to take over and become “self aware” of themselves. Meaning become aware of the powers to control everything around electronic through artificial intelligence. The world is advancing into digital unmanned technologies every year currently. Our phones can hear what we say and prompt search engines to look things up for us and soon cars and machines will operate themselves out of convenience to humans. What if they decide to do what they want? The machines that is. Upgrade is a different story that is also awfully relevant to today. In Upgrade the man goes paralyzed after a tragic incident and shows possibly the saddest death scene to someone close to him I have ever seen on film. The reason you can even get through the death scene is because you saw the preview and know he gets his revenge once his body is upgraded by a super human computer chip designed to infiltrate your own body and cells making you function different/better as well having a Siri, Wiki, Tech Guide, science lifeline and anything you want information wise in your own head by just asking. Like a google search engine in your mind. However at what cost will this upgrade be? You feel amazing yet are you really in control once machines fully use their artificial intelligence and how intelligent are these micro chips? Maybe too smart. This movie has a great soundtrack that builds scenes to an intensity that really grasps your attention to the important scenes. Also each character really nails their acting that blends the story together very well. This movie is probably one of the best Sci-Fi films every made in my opinion. This isn’t Alien Sci-Fi but rather a realistic futuristic plot that is highly believable. Your main character lets you be connected with his effort to stay old school by the way he lives his life. The classic cars he enjoys to drive also makes him most authentic but there is also a police detective who understands going old school helps figure out shit in a digital world too. For all my major Sci-Fi heads check this one out.

Terminator 3 Dark Fate movie (2019)

   You need to be a die hard Terminator fan of 1 & 2 to truly love this movie. You need to understand what the movie shows as it’s perspective to not only time travel but to the future as we think to know it. In T1 we get horror, we get a robot sent from the future to kill everything. In the T2 film we get the same concept only John Connor teaches the machine the value of human life and that saving his life isn’t the only reason to be  of help. You almost see a slight human emotion in Arnold at the very end of t2 as the others are crying because he needs to self Terminate. His thumbs up confirming it as he perishes. Now in T3 you get complete homage to all the previous Terminators as if the other installments like Salvation and Genisys never existed. You feel like it is T1 T2 and now T3 continuing the story. The lead character must be saved and they make that very obvious in the previews. For the first time Terminator viewers see CGI actually plays a great role in the film. As previous Terminator films actual models and hand made props were made to look like a futuristic apocalypse land. In this it’s all done with CGI so they spare you the small details of what a robot is and jump right to what it can do. They even speed by the examples of small details the viewers can figure out for themselves. They make several references to the previous Terminators but with a twist that either leaves you in amazement or you get a slight chuckle about the differences of an entirely new generation of the same story you know all too well. Sarah is just as tough as you expect her to be the entire film. The new character played by Natalie Reyes does a great job at being the new important person caught in the hurricane of technology. You wonder how all these time lines overlap as an original terminator fan but you soon realize these paradoxes of time travel are meant to have holes in the story to further more rabbit trails that never end. Arnold reprises his role with a new twist that is so believable you fall in love with his character all over again. He is still the protector yet the machine with funny witty comments yet still plays a bad mutherfucker, The new machine who is a woman shows the right human attributes for you to like her character as well. She also requires different needs and wants to make the story jive with her mission. The supporting characters all play small roles in impacting the story but support the idea that no one knows what is really going on as the world goes into chaos through Judgement Day. They do a good job explaining each persons role and where their characters origin comes from. You get plenty of action and CGI does a great job in explaining how strong the new terminator is. Which the person who plays the bad guy does a great job of playing a pretend human but acts like a sinister killer with no remorse. Very believable bad guy as we re-learn the bad guy doesn’t need to be Arnold size to be lethal  like how the T1000 was not a big guy but very dangerous. The story-line all makes sense and if you are a real deal true fan you can see how the story lets you see the milestones in the characters journey throughout the story. They make several references to technology in-the-now and how it can turn against us which in previous Terminator movies the world was only introduced to just so much technology at those times through the 1980s & 90’s. Yet with this version you see it in the now and what could happen. This is James Cameron’s craft that makes me say, he did it again teamed up with Tim Miller. They pay so much respect to John Connor and you have to see it to understand but Terminator 2 was my favorite movie of all time so I am a bit bias. Still, great movie to check out. One critique I have is actually in the Previews they made before the movies release. They should have shown a shorter clip of Arnold to make you more unsure on his role. Also, I understand Edward Furlong has been in a difficult state but the team should have got him clean and sober for this movie which was a break through in his initial career. They should have done whatever it takes to put john right back in. They had to create an entirely new story around John Connor all because Edward Furlong wants to get drunk and high in real life. That’s just sad as he was a hero to many kids who wanted to have their very own Terminator growing up riding a dirt bike through CA and leader if the some day resistance. Instead the movie does great but John Connor was the main point.  

Yelawolf Live @Showbox Sodo 10/16/19

Showbox is a great venue, most people like Showbox Market better which I agree but Sodo has it’s perks. Large area very open and easy to see the show. VIP upgrade gets you reserved seating with good views and waitress to bring your drinks & food. This was my first time seeing Yelawolf live for his Ghetto Cowboy Tour and he mentioned in his show having history with Seattle taking a bus up here back in the day for gig during the winter. His DJ was setup with a full size Chevrolet caprice classic trunk and rear end with working lights and trunk that opened up releasing mystical smoke. Very cool. Yelawolf came in with a strong entrance and was very energetic. Sporting his flannel shirt with large hat belting out lyrics like a hood-style hill billy straight out of a double wide in some swampy corner. Songs like “Daddy’s Lambo” he still delivered the song genuine even despite the fact he might be able to afford a Lambo now after his years in the business. He fired the lyrics out like he was still in aww of rich people with that “white bread” haha. I didn’t really have one negative thing to say about the show and when he was done there was no encore which I appreciated because it was lights out show was over. His sound is like an old rusty nail behind a bunch of tattoo’ed white boys off-roading trucks in the mud yet you know they are all strapped and down to get gangster. His style is more about hip hop with a hint of some rock that makes you feel the Kid Rock Vibe but much more hip hop esq. Fun artist and great show check him out.

Dane Cook Live @Paramount Theater 10/12/19

Paramount Theater is among the favorite venues for me. Located in Downtown Seattle and I believe owned by the late and great Paul Allen. Historical theater with multi levels. If you pay for the Paramount membership you get VIP entrance and private lounge with great seating. Either way great seating throughout the venue. This is my second time seeing Dane Cook live at the same venue about 6 years ago. I enjoyed the show many topics were covered about social media and dating which Dane uses his mannerisms and hand movements to make the jokes funnier. One critique is that he used some segments of viral youtube videos that we already knew about but either way still funny. I also think it’s funny how he uses people in the crowd or even the security guards to produce jokes. You feel like it isn’t staged and he is just freestyling his jokes showing he has real talent of being funny without being scripted. Also he took jabs at himself and how he has been out of the biz for a while. A comedy that is good at making fun of himself is also an art. Overall a great show and worth seeing Dane if he ever is in your town for a comedy show.

NF Live @WAMU 10/5/19

So normally I hate this venue WAMU theater for it’s large open area that kills sound quality. Usually it’s never good sounds in there. However this show was surprisingly good. I still dislike the venue for it’s setup and arrangement but vocals weren’t too bad inside and NF sounded decent for sure. A friend invited me to this last minute and I never heard of this dude but looked at a couple youtube videos and gained interest before going. At first ear-glance -He first sounds like an Eminem voice but his lyrics are nothing of living a double wide talking about his mom like Eminem made himself famous for. Eminem will never get any play in my car and Machine Gun Kelly would win in an actual fight with him so fuck their battle rap. NF has some dark side to his lyrics but he sounds honest in what he is saying and his delivery is clean. He raps of He is worth checking out and good for him filling a large venue like he did. NF has the story if growing up in the shit and making it through rap as the escape. Although I think he understands that you have to keep the tracks fresh with different topics to really reach all audience types.

Ciara Live @WA State Fair 9/13/19

This was a great show and even though I am not a huge fan of this venue it was still worth attending. The WA State Fair grounds are wide open with stands in the veyr back and standard folding chairs around the stage. One bar is located to the left side and it’s usually packed. If it rains your fucked while the artists stare at you drenched under their covered stage area. Luckily this wasn’t a rainy day show. Sir Mix A lot opened for her and no matter how many times I see him he still can put new twists on his classic songs. Ciara was great, came out with the dance moves and the voice like a modern day Janet Jackson. She has many catchy songs that you just really can’t fuck up live, they still sound great. She made a couple comments about liking Seattle since she dates a football player which the crowd loved. Other than that just was a decent show and worth seeing her.

Avengement Movie (2019)

This movie is just so intense that you are locked in and glued the entire time. The fight scenes mixed with deep drama to the plot of the story told just thrashes your mind around. You feel the emotions of what is happening and that the character could almost punch straight through concrete or fight 10 dudes at the same time without ever losing no matter how bloody he got. None of your traditional mega-era movie fight scenes compare to this. No martial arts movie or anything with battle told could compete to this. Some of this is in part of the fact that Scott Adkins who plays the lead role is a real deal workout enthusiast as well as a martial arts connoisseur. Also he does all of his own stunts and we remember how popular Jackie Chan was for not only doing that but proving how realer it produces action scenes. The difference is that this on is not a typical heroic action film, this is a dark gritty reality told without any reduction in evil visuals. This story feels like you are scared of the good guy because he is really the guy forced to be the bad guy. Yet you are rooting for him like it’s your own battle. Adkins fighting scenes are flawless but so are his competitors. When the fight scene happens you think of MMA and you imagine two mutherfuckers pounding the shit out of each other but eventually the time is always up or next round etc. This movie makes you think what if that buzzer never existed. What if no ref or ambulance would ever care. What happens when two individuals beat on each other so hard they are actually using crushed knuckles against fractured broken bones. Yet the two contenders would fight through stab wounds and visually broken limbs. That would be a sight to see but I think it’s better fictional so we don’t turn into a race of weirdos paying to see people kill people. However though some of the fight scenes are beautifully theatrical keep in mind one of the directors used real facts of certain crime that happens in there country. So even though not a true story its based off real facts/events to really help you engage in the story. There are scenes where you see how vicious the character can be yet live by certain principals. Even though you feel struggle and see the road he went on, you can see some human traits remain in his character. Then quickly after you see something seemingly calm he snaps and rages while a superb soundtrack music plays in the background, almost opera metal like..and that adds to the violence. You see that Adkins not only looks menacing you see how much damage he can take without stopping. Even though I describe to you him crushes anything in his path you see every injury he gets as he pushes through the pain. No matter what part of his own body he destroys you just see his chrome teeth opened up and his eyes looking like pure revenge. Oh and he has chrome teeth because someone smashed all of his teeth out curb stomp style and the dentist put chrome ones in to be a dick to him. However it made him look even more vicious like a human battle tank in tough armor never stopping for fuel or resources just ready to fight. Great start middle and ending which is what makes any movie a classic.

Joseph Duo & Chris Hondros (1970-2011)

I was very fascinated with this story. Because years ago I saw the above picture where Duo is running fiercely and shirtless with his trusty RPG while others are ducking for cover. Apparently Chris Hondros in the below picture was a war/ conflict era photographer. He traveled the world photographing wars in the scariest places on the planet. Duo was living in a place where war was coined “the endless war” as it was going on for well over two decades. I will spare the specific details because you can look these guys up on the internet and Hondros has a WIKI page. However DUO isn’t as documented except through Hondros. The reason is that this picture captured so much attention that it was on every magazine, bus stop , news article, art gallery and you name it. All with Duo running at the camera with his battle cry. It’s reported that at that time he walked around shirtless as a commander of his army firing machine guns and rocket launchers without any fear so much so he captured the attention of Hondros. Duo had dropped out of high school to join the army and later it was a means of survival to feed his family. He was pure fearless and gnarly as fuck. the ultimate combat weapon and not a big guy at all, very Shmedium. Hondros was so taken by his presence that he reached out to Duo seen in the lower picture and convinced him to go back to school, get out of war zone and also helped Duo enroll in college. Duo later received a law degree and also got into politics for his country. Hondros said that in some of his pictures they display how uncomfortable war is and how some folks even enjoy it given the nature of Duo in the picture. Bloodlust is how he described it. Although if you ask Duo how he feels, he says he doesn’t like the picture any longer and decided to never raise a weapon towards anyone ever again. He says he was happy at the time defending his country but would much rather help his community in a positive manner instead. There is a movie out called “Johnny Mad Dog” that covers many of the conflict zones Duo was navigating through. Hondros died in an Air Strike in 2011 while doing what he always did. His work and his art has been celebrated for years since his death, including art galleries and donations for worthy causes. Just wanted to share this and to anyone else interested all you have to do is google those names.