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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Just as bloody as before., 29 Nov. 2004
This review is from: Crimes (Audio CD)
Some people were concerned that for the Blood Brothers' first major label release that they would be made to tone down both their lyrics and their ear destroying rhythms. They were wrong.
Crimes, if anything, is an even better album than the fantastic Burn, Piano Island, Burn. On this album they show that they can do the full range of songs; from almost acoustic on the title track to the drum rupturing final part of Rats for Candy. Burn, Piano Island, Burn was at times difficult to listen to all the way through, and even more difficult to perform live, leading perhaps to a more balanced album this time.
The lyrics are spectacularly dark and disturbing; the images that the band create through their songs are perhaps similar to Monkey Dust or Chris Morris's Jam in the way they set out to show a deeply fractured and dysfunctional world. The chorus of first track Feed Me to the Forest sets out its stall for the remainder.
It is lyrics such as these which make Blood Brothers different from your typical emo/screamo band which sing about nothing more than love, relationships and suicide. There are defintely some political undertones to this album, whether they are intended as that or not. These become apparent on the title track, which seems both a mission statement by the band and an angry shout at the destruction caused by consumerism and its effect on the most vulnerable: "We're just like condom wrappers, used up, torn up, thrown away." "And the children, in the subway, eating applecores. They're breathing paint out of plastic bags. Their mumbled mouths say, 'is anybody listening?'"
The song Celebrator, which has lyrics I doubt I could get away with repeating here, seems like an angry reaction to the war in Iraq. Devestator, perhaps though, is the key to the message in the whole album, probably intended ironically: "Everybody needs a little devestation."
I couldn't agree more.

The Getaway (PS2)
The Getaway (PS2)

4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Slightly above average., 21 Jan. 2004
This review is from: The Getaway (PS2) (Video Game)
The Getaway, a game which wants to be a film. It's sort of typical of the gaming genre that if this had been written as a film, it would have gotten nowhere near production.
The game has many problems. It's very glitchy in places. Walking through car doors, meeting your character twice, the camera angle suddenly flying around when you're fighting, other things that are amusing the first time they inadvertently happen, annoying the next.
The story line isn't original. The dialogue and acting of the cut scenes is dire. All the women appear to have been beaten around the head with a fire extinguisher, even the so-called "stunning" Yasmin, who you travel around with in later missions. The motion capture seems to have failed to create a decent looking woman. The main character, Mark Hammond, is impossible to sympathise with. The cop, Frank Carter, who you play as in the second half of the game, is much easier to like.
The comments made as you drive around, amusing at first, becoming annoying when repeated. There isn't that much of an incentive to replay the missions. The free roaming mode you get when you complete all the missions only lets you play as Hammond.
Despite all this, the missions are surprisingly good and fun to play. They're not hard enough to make you weep with frustration, but they're hard enough to give you a good challenge. Despite the bad dialogue and acting, the story between the two characters does tie together well. The controlling system is easy to use, although it takes a while to get to grips with. The different, though limited, weapons are recreated well. The capturing of London is fantastic, and there are plenty of different cars to steal and romp around in. The stealth mode is a nice addition to what would otherwise be a GTA rip-off set in London. And let's face it, shooting the rozzers to an untimely grave is damn fun.
A flawed game then, but one which will definitely hold your attention for a few weeks. And at platinum price or lower, a worthy purchase.

The Earth Is Not A Cold Dead Place
The Earth Is Not A Cold Dead Place

9 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Album of 2003, 14 Nov. 2003
Forget your Coheed & Cambrias' and Mars Voltas', this is the album of 2003. Explosions in the Sky return with the best post-rock album since gybe! bombarded us with lift yr. skinny fists!.
If you loved Those Who Tell The Truth... on first listen you may be a little disappointed, as this album is a lot more melodic, laying off the well-used distortion pedal. Some would think this would make EITS lose their edge; wrong. The result we have is 5 tracks of pure beauty, with slow builds and superb percussion. Each track draws the listener further in, making you wonder whether the cd can get any better as it progresses. Amazingly, it does, even bringing in the distortion once or twice just to show you they can still truly rock.
2003 has a been a great year for music; EITS make the best of the best.

The Texas Chainsaw Massacre: The Next Generation [VHS] [2003]
The Texas Chainsaw Massacre: The Next Generation [VHS] [2003]

3 of 7 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Dire., 3 Nov. 2003
The Texas Chainsaw Massacre: The Next Generation doesn't know whether it wants to be a sequel or a remake; frankly, it would have been better if this terrible film had never been made.
The basic premise is similar to the original movie; teenagers in a car, they get lost in the woods and come across a somewhat dysfunctional family of pyschopaths. Sadly, this film has none of the superb energy and genre-defining moments which the original had. The makers obviously wanted this film to be somewhat camp; Leatherface, after all, is a cross-dresser. Sadly, the whole thing is not so much frightening or even slightly scary; instead it is simply somewhat grisly, which is its only success. The characters are all incredibly annoying, although the acting isn't as bad as it could be. A young Renee Zellweger as Jenny shows her potential talent as an actress under difficult circumstances.
What really lets the film down is its incredibly bad editing, although it could also being the cutting which takes out an incredible 8 minutes from the original cut. One minute one of the girls is hanging on a hook, the next she's in front of car, with no explanation of how she got there, which is either incredibly funny or tragic, depending on your point of view. The ending also makes absolutely no sense due to bad editing which sees the film suddenly jump with no explanation. Another let down for fans of the slasher horror genre is the lack of gore, which apart from one of the characters self-harm is almost entirely missing. The killings which do take place do so off camera, leaving it to our imagination, instead of grabbing attention which this film badly needed to do.
This film has no redeeming qualities, and is a sequel/remake too far for anyone. Maybe the remake of the original will be better, but I'm certainly not holding my breath. Avoid.

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