Category Archives: Performances

Which of Slash’s bands is the best?

Guns N’ Roses, Velvet Revolver, Slash’s Snakepit — all three of these bands have on thing in common, and it is that each of these bands at one point included the legendary guitarist Slash. But which of these are the best?

Without a doubt, this entire blog post is opinionated. There will be disagreements.

The order in which Slash was in is Guns N’ Roses, then Slash’s Snakepit, then Velvet Revolver.


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If I were to compare the modern day Guns N’ Roses with any of the two other bands, it would be ranked the lowest, hands down. But if I were to compare the time in which Slash was in Guns N’ Roses, it would be ranked the highest, hands down. Comparing bands is a difficult task, but the solos Slash did in Guns N’ Roses are so much better than the ones he did elsewhere. Primarily the ones in Paradise City (outro), Nightrain, November Rain (outro), the riff in Sweet Child O’ Mine, etc.


Next would be Slash’s Snakepit. Slash was least known for his time in this band, but his solos were definitely up there with the ones from Guns N’ Roses. The band did a good job utilizing their gift that is Slash. Some songs to listen to are Been There Lately, Neither Can I, Monkey Chow, Take It Away, etc.

Last is Velvet Revolver. Don’t get me wrong, I love Velvet Revolver. But unfortunately, they are nowhere near the levels of Guns N’ Roses and Slash’s Snakepit. The vocals is better than Slash’s Snakepit’s, but the solos are not. The band does not do a good job of emphasizing Slash’s presence. Their songs are still good; ones to listen to are Let It Roll and Slither.

The reason I wrote about this is because my concerts for the Slash concert in Korea have arrived! Two weeks later, I will be watching the master performing some of his greatest works from all three bands. The final setlist for Koera is not published, but this is what he performed in Australia a couple days back:

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This setlist, in my opinion, is almost as good as it can get. The lack of Snakepit songs is disappointing but it is still all good.  Paradise City being their last song is a great idea, for its outro is truly a great way to end a concert. I can’t wait!

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Helloween and Eagles coming to South Korea

The German power metal band, Helloween, as well as the American rock band, the Eagles, have announced a couple weeks ago that they will come to Korea in March 2nd and March 15th, respectively.

Both bands epitomize their genres of music. Without a doubt, the Eagles are much more popular here in Korea. Big name, classic artists such as Eric Clapton and Stevie Wonder are popular here, while lesser known bands such as Iron Maiden and Helloween are not.

I like them all, but it would be great if tickets for the latter concerts sold more…numerous concerts in the past had to be canceled due to the lack of sales in concert tickets. And considering I prefer metal over classic rock, it saddens me to see such poor ticket sales.

The Iron Maiden and Helloween concerts are in critical condition, and are on the verge of canceling. Not to mention that metal and alternative rock concerts are much more exciting than classic rock pop concerts, because the former have standing areas. Sitting down and watching a concert may be fun, but standing up and watching is a million times more worth the money and the best experience one can have at a concert, and so that is what I recommend to anybody wanting to go to a concert.

Rock of Ages Broadway Cast Review

There was no better musical to watch this summer than the world renowned Rock of Ages. The show was on August 5th, at 8 P.M., Broadway. The Broadway cast included many stars such as Mitchell Jarvis, Paul Schoeffler, Amy Spanger, and more. This musical was the perfect one for me. It was of my favorite genre; furthermore, my favorite era in my favorite genre. The musical is about an aspiring rock vocalist going after success in a town. The storyline was definitely cheesy, but the music in it was of the most impressive quality. The instruments were mostly those used in the Rock genre, including electric guitar, bass, keyboard, etc., with people of both genders and all ages singing.

As I said, the genre was Rock and Roll — specifically that of the 70s and 80s, which is without a doubt my favorite era and when a majority of my music is from. The cast covered/remade/mashed up songs of many different artists such as “Don’t Stop Believin’” by Journey, “The Final Countdown” by Europe, “We’re Not Gonna Take it” and “I Wanna Rock” by Twisted Sisters, “More Than Words” by Extreme, and lots more. They also mashed up songs, for example, “I Hate Myself For Loving You” by Joan Jett and “Heat of the Moment” by Asia. My favorite part of the show was the guitar solos. The guitarist is the guy from Night Ranger, and though he was not in the actual storyline itself, he was able to be seen playing behind the main cast along with the drummer, bassist, and rhythm guitarist.

Most songs included intense solos, but my favorite was definitely the last two minutes of the musical. What happened was first, the main cast sang “Don’t Stop Believin’” as an encore/closer, and then when they were done, the guitarist played the entire song again as a sort of remixed solo. He didn’t play what Journey played originally, instead, he must have rewritten the entire song in a guitar solo. It is hard to describe, and so I recommend that the reader search it up on YouTube (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZmoVLduOY-Y) and play it from 5:50. Overall, I definitely loved this musical especially because I could relate to it so much. Some may argue that they butchered some of the songs by covering them,  and while I agree on some levels, the cast did an excellent job on a majority of the songs and gave a nice twist to it, without making it any more modern than the original was. The mashups were nice. The vocals were pretty good, and the cover band did not change any part of the song too much that it would be noticeable. I would watch it again with no problems.

Concerts in 2011

In South Korea, the year of 2011 looks promising in terms of concerts and performances.

In 2010, we saw several big name artists like Muse and Stevie Wonder come here. What is in store for 2011 you ask?

Here are some big performances confirmed so far:

1) Sting – January 11th

 

 

 

 

 

 

2) Taylor Swift – February 11th

 

 

 

 

 

 

3) Eric Clapton – February 20th

 

 

 

 

4) Iron Maiden – March 10th

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

5) Slash – March 20th


 

 

 

 

 

 

With 1 being the concert I most want to attend and 5 being the lowest, here is

my personal ranking:

1) Eric Clapton — A true guitar legend. There should be little to no debate here.
2) Slash — I’m assuming he’s performing his new album, which was so good that I posted about it in one of my earlier posts! I wonder what’s going to happen with all the featuring artists though?
3) Iron Maiden — The epitome of metal music; only falling slightly behind Slash
4) Sting —  Overrated, and though I love The Police, Sting is just bleh.
5)  Taylor Swift — Never been a fan.

Las Vegas, Nevada pt. 1

My blog is like a T.V. show…both have a resting period while a new season starts — new seasons being a new school year.

My summer was exciting. During the first half of my summer I studied at hagwons but during the second half  I went to the two most exciting places I’ve ever visited (I wish my family traveled more).

The two places I visited were Las Vegas and New York!

My first destination was Las Vegas. Everything was different there: weather, food, buildings, view, transportation, hotels, etc.

First thing I noticed were the taxis, as it was what I rode to The Strip. The Las Vegas Strip is where most of the casions, hotels, resorts, and other stuff are. The taxi drivers in America always place things in the front passenger seat. I assumed it was because guns are legal there, which raises the debate on whether guns should be illegal or not, though I’m not going to get into that question…

Once we approached the Strip, I experienced first hand the view of Las Vegas , which is something I’ve only head about or seen on T.V.. The view of the hotels was mind-blowing. They were so tall, so shiny, so magnificently shaped.

The Strip..the buildings I recognize are Caesar's Palace and MGM Grand.

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My family and I stayed at the world renowned Bellagio. The first thing that came to my head was the Ocean’s Eleven series, because the Bellagio was used in the movie along with other major hotels and casinos.

It was afternoon when we checked in and so we ate dinner before going to watch the first performance of my Vegas stay, David Copperfield (the other being Blue Man Group). The show was amazing! He really is the world’s best illusionist. Being the curious person I am, I researched some of his tricks and ended up reading a very interesting article.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sleight_of_Hand

A video explaining.

When I came out after the show ended, it was nighttime in Vegas. Neon lights flashed everywhere. Some call NYC the city that never sleeps but maybe that saying should be the cities that never sleep and the definition be NYC and Las Vegas.

Cirque du Soleil – Zaia!

Cirque Du Soleil – Zaia!

During my brief stay in Hong Kong + Macau, I watched Zaia, one of the shows the renowned Cirque du Soleil presents. I’ve watched their shows ever since I was young, the first one I watched was Quidam and the last one I watched was Allegria. First of all, I would like to point out Macaù is one of the two countries under the special rule of China, the other one being Hong Kong. We stayed in the Venetian Hotel in Macaù, which is also where Zaia is performed every couple of weeks (?). It is also the only place in the world Zaia can be seen, so it felt special to be sleeping here. To get to Macaù we had to ride a boat from Hong Kong; we stayed in Hong Kong during the day and went to Macaù at night.

Cirque du Soleil, or Circus of the Sun in English, is a performing arts franchise, consisting of many episodes/shows. The shows are somewhat circus type, but it is no ordinary circus at all. There are always a comic element — the clowns, a serious element — opera singers, a nerve wrecking element — the stunts, and definitely a mind blowing element — everything else. Zaia included truly impressive acts, and though I want to describe to you what kind of acts there were, it is too hard to describe because it is so different from anything most people watch. To help me describe, here are some videos:

This video is a juggling act that was also in Zaia. Pretty impressive, right? 4:10 to the end of the video is my favorite part.

This is a video of a clown act from Quidam. It’s always funnier watching it live; I don’t think this act was as funny as the ones in Zaia.

Fascinating.
Every time I watch one of their shows, I am always astounded by the teamwork and coordination of the performers, working with each other to perfection. So many things go on at once, some are less important which is why there is always some indication of where the main act is.

Most shows start with clowns interacting with the audience or with each other, and though “clowns” may sound cheesy, these guys are different. These clowns know how to make the audience laugh out loud, I was no exception to this. They appear in the middle of shows for a funny little act and also join in with some other acts too. The opening to Zaia was the funniest thing I saw during spring vacation. I will put up a video for you to watch, but I recommend you to watch while alone.

This show was way better than Riverdance (refer to my previous post to see what that was about) and also better than Allegria, the previous Cirque du Soleil show I watched. The shows are held here in Korea from time to time and when they are, I strongly, strongly recommend you to buy or ask your parents to buy tickets to see them perform live. You will be amazed.

Riverdance

On the night of March 11th, I went to see Riverdance. IIRC (If I Remember/Recall Correctly; I bet half of you just learned a new meme!) the following Friday was a curriculum day so I could watch the show not worrying about school the next day. Not like I WANTED to watch this, my parents made me by telling me “We bought your ticket, the show’s on Friday” in response to me saying “I’ll think about it”.

Riverdance is a show about Tap Dancing. As in Irish Tapdancing. It sounds lame, I know, and I thought so too. But after two hours of non stop tapdancing and amazing music, I thought it was…pretty cool. I mean,  it was really impressive how they can do that with their feet, but it is not something I would watch again.

The picture includes the ticket stub and a page from the program. That page is a picture of my favorite bit in the show. It was a “Tapdance showdown” between two groups, exchanging tap dance routines and cool acrobatics. It was really good, and the music (performed Live by the way) really accompanied the setting very well.

It was a really interesting show, it did not however change my views on Irish Tapdancing. It was better than staying home doing nothing on a “friday night” (because it was Thursday and we don’t..yeah you know what I’m talking about) and I haven’t seen a play or a show of some sort in a while.

Here’s a video of the final part of the show:

TL;DR version (Too Long; Didn’t Read. Did you learn another meme?)
Very cool, interesting, great music, amazing performers.

Worth the time and money, but not something I would watch again.