Review: IAMX – Metanoia Tour 2016

Last time I saw IAMX live, I was complaining about the static audience, but nothing had prepared me for March 14th. Nothing!

IAMX has released two more albums since our last encounter, one of which is practically amazing, and the other one is Metanoia. I thought about reviewing it a few times, but somehow it felt redundant for me to do it.

iamxMetanoia is a weird, weird album. It is said to be rooted deep into Chris’ depression, and it certainly sounds like it. However, early fans will love it, because it sounds so much like The Alternative and Kiss + Swallow, without the lyrical depth that made me scream „Chris, you decadent god!„. Newer fans might be a little confused, though… Metanoia is so rough, so blunt, painful at times and confusing. The album is missing the poetry that makes Chris what he is.

This is the first time I had to wait (not counting the pouring rain at the Killers & White Lies concert) so much to see one of my favorite bands. IAMX got a little lost on the Transylvanian roads, but the wait was totally worth it. Even though the band started playing 3 hours after the intended timeline.

As usual, Chris was so visual. The background played on loop disturbing images of love and loss, of hate and despair, of desert, naked bodies and broken hopes. How else would you know you’re at an IAMX concert?!

He started violently with I Come With Knives, one of the best songs he ever wrote. His keyboard players were demanding all of the attention, yet his voice managed to rule us all.

I never really liked The Alternative – not the song, and not the album, but this time it felt different. This time, Chris had a beautiful crowd all to himself, all of whom paid to see and hear him, and all of us were his devoted fans. In this light, the song made so much sense than it did a few years ago.

Happiness was the first song off Metanoia, and one of the few I really like. Depressing, raw and broken, Chris sang of despair and what more could I ask for? I was truly happy then.

No Maker Made Me is my personal anthem off Metanoia. I truly love the song, the message, the sound of it. I like its bluntness and the raw feeling I get when I listen to it, especially the screaming part of „you fucking sinner”…

In the Tear Garden we meet again. A song with so much meaning, so special and sad, it could only be followed by OCDEM.

Oh Cruel Darkness Embrace Me feels very ambivalent to me now. I sorta have a love-hate relationship with it, though the song is great. Sometimes it feels like irony, sometimes it plays out like demand-able hope. Who says it’s not the both of them?

Last time when I saw IAMX, Spit It Out ended the concert. It’s still my favorite song, my sad song, my beautiful song, and I really thought that’s the best I can get out of it. Yet, somehow, Chris outdone himself. Spit It Out grew up and this metamorphosis was incredible on so many levels. The song sounded like Chris was covering an oldie, so different, so mellow, still angst-y and depressing. I wish I could listen to this version and dissect it all day long, because it’s so different, yet so familiar.

Nightlife is one of Chris’s most used songs in movies and TV shows. You can hear it in How To Get Away With Murder (I think), in vampire movies and so on. This track reminds me of 90s ravers, even though I was never part of that scene. It has urgency, it’s raw, it’s primal and wild, and one of the best songs written by Chris. Even though it’s not universal, I really appreciated the inclusion on this set-list.

The holy trio of Metanoia was up next. Insomnia, North Star and Aphrodisiac followed up what was, I think, one of the best concerts I’ve been to. Insomnia is so demanding, so lost, but there comes North Star, determined and mature. Only Aphrodisiac can be played next, because it’s the only song suited for this color scheme. All three songs have different shades of grey, but Aphrodisiac is so evil, plotting weird stuff under tones of make up and promoting promiscuity in a way that allows you to go through the gates of heaven.

And because Chris is the master of emotional roller-coasting (is that even a word?!), he ends this with the amazing Your Joy Is My Low. This is one of the first songs I listened from IAMX, so I hold it dear and close. Keyboards all over the place, jerky rhythm, a bassline to die for and the amazing poetry that made me fell in love. With such lyrics, who can judge me?

You shift the play, push the curve to sit between your thighs
It’s a sign, it’s time to exercise the lines
You want the double cut through to wet, invade and slide
You slide and I’m awake and I’m the slave tonight

You lie, you lie to spare my life
You needed it, he tasted you inside out

Say it, your joy, your joy is my low
So you want yourself to stop
Say it, your joy, your joy is my low
And when you crack the whip, I crawl again

How can you remain complete after hearing this live? After witnessing Chris’s debauchery with such unaffectedness that makes me run after his bus tour and beg him to take me with them?

Of course, this could only be followed by Kiss + Swallow. Electronica through the roof! The bass rules this piece, and the way Chris says „zero” is so sinful and lovely…

It’s only natural I should admit by now the fact that listening to I Am Terrified live scared me. Not because of the lyrics, but because of the mismatch. It felt weird to hear it after the Kraftwerk-like gem that is Kiss + Swallow, however it wasn’t that bad. Just awkward. And sad. Terribly sad.

If the first encore came with Kiss + Swallow, the second one saw me amazed by the fact that Bring Me Back a Dog is still a thing. It’s one of my favorite songs, and this time Chris had a whole army spitting these beautiful lyrics back at him with voracity and passion. It was amazing!

The night ended with Mercy, one of the songs I avoid at all costs. Well, I avoid it after the first 60-70 seconds. It’s beautifully written, of course, and the vocals are perfect for it. But the chorus makes my heart ache, I almost feel like crying, so I try to keep myself sane by avoiding it.

I thought that this concert will bring me nothing new. Boy, was I wrong! Last time, I complained that Chris needed a better audience, but this time everyone present was there to support and love him. We were all one soul, mixed together with agony, anticipation, love, distrust, disappointment, hope and Chris. I’m so glad I was there, this was the concert I’ve been waiting for two years now.

Pic. The whole setlist here.

Nice and True

The time is blind,
and maybe dead,
but all that counts
is how to hide
inside my head.
Nothing to love,
nothing to cherish,
nothing but stabbed eyes,
wads of cash,
I’ll feed you scars and ashes,
tell me – is it all about the gashes
of truth and dare.
There’s nothing behind me but blank stares.
I’d love to watch you dance,
undress your sins,
unclench your fists,
I’d feed you drugs and fame,
you’d do me on your knees
wouldn’t that be lame?
I’d use you
and abuse me,
I’d feed you nothings
and pieces of everything.
All of the hate,
all of the dirt,
the jizz and the squirt,
the spit and the shit.
And you’ll fall for me,
and I’d fall for you,
wouldn’t that be nice and true?

Castigatori I AM THE ROCKER

bmi_i am the rockerAm primit la concursul organizat impreuna cu Phoenix Entertainment cele mai faine intamplari pe care mi-a fost dat sa le aud, dar am primit si comentarii intarziate. Din respect pentru persoanele care s-au incadrat in limita de timp (30 iunie), aceste comentarii au fost aprobate, dar nu au fost luate in considerare.

Pentru restul povestilor, din fericire, s-a inventat random.org ca sa ma ajute sa aleg cele mai tari patanii concertistice. Marele castigator a fost, in opinia mea, Remus, pe care il felicit pentru curaj si sper ca a luat corigenta la economie. 🙂
Cu ajutorul lui random.org, am extras si ceilalti doi castigatori din lista de comentatori (dupa ce in prealabil l-am eliminat pe Remus) – Drgs si Cezar.

Toti trei castigatorii vor fi contactati pe email.

We are the rockers, I guess! Ne vedem la festival! \m/iamtherockerlogowebsite2

Everything

handsAin’t it funny when songs and movies and basically anything and everything makes sense all of a sudden?

I used to think my life was reserved for a bleak practical non-existence, therefor I must admit I am quite astonished and thrilled by the greatness it has right now.

Everything in this life is tastier than ever before, all of my experiences are worth mentioning and each and everyday is a blessing. Not a blessing in disguise, but a true moment to be savored permanently.

I’ve come to calm and peace and quiet. I’ve come to mornings of smile and nights of mingled limbs. I’ve come to passion and silence and I feel like I finally found my everything.

Maybe I did. I really hope I did. Because I could not bear the thought that everything that you are is not truly my everything.

Pic.

Review: Taylor Swift – Bad Blood ft. Kendrick Lamar

After a few years of musical anger, reflected by the personal demons in all the rock music that haunted my playlists, something weird happened and now my brain is wired along the pop waves that sweep through the nation.

And when I say nation, I am referring to, of course, the almighty internet.

With the release of 1989, I noticed that I am a big fan of the pop princess that is Taylor Swift. Her newest video is one of great cinematic importance, star studded and very Frank Miller-esque. Obviously, Taylor kills it in this video – she’s so inhumanly pretty and hot and bad ass, to the point I can’t stand her.

Although Bad Blood is a bit of a hot mess, especially because of all those pop culture references that Joseph Kahn seems to use ad libitum, but all in all, the final cut marks a whole lotta neo-noir and Taylor Swift‘s best video yet. I was saving this title for her previous effort, Style, but Bad Blood, coupled with the song, is clearly a work of art.

With nods to the likes of Sin City, Matrix, Kill Bill and Tron, the stars of the video assume aliases to help them get even with Arsyn, the Wrong-Doer (Selena Gomez), and help avenge Catastrophe (Taylor Swift).

The song is rumored to be about rival Katy Perry, who presumably stole some of Tay-Tay’s backup dancers, but who knows? Girls in pop biz are so up in each other’s biz-biz, right?! Anyhoo, the likes of:

Lily Aldridge (Frostbyte – sorry, not feeling it!)

Zendaya (Cut-Throat – I really don’t know why she’s famous, but here she slays it)

Hayley Williams (The Crimson Curse – cause of course she is, the Punk Princess herself!)

Gigi Hadid (Slay-Z – nice play on words, Kardashian undercover)

Ellie Goulding (Destructa X – a really appropriate nod to showcase her destructive ways with the charts)

Hailee Steinfeld (The Trinity – such a boring waste of visuals)

Lena Dunham (Lucky Fiori – awesome mob-like attitude!)

Kendrick Lamar (Welvin Da Great – What Da What?!)

Karlie Kloss (Knockout – a different way to spell Perfection, if you like)

Serayah (Dilemma – I am having one right now. Who is you?!)

Jessica Alba (Domino – or Little Nancy Callahan, that works even better!)

Martha Hunt (Homeslice – I was betting on Martha Stewart, sign of a gap in my current pop culture information)

Ellen Pompeo (Luna – oh, wow! Unimaginative as hell!)

Mariska Hargitay (Justice – I’m betting on supermodel here)

Cara Delevingne (Mother Chucker – beautiful, twisted beast)

Cindy Crawford (Headmistress – age is but a number, but beauty is forever?)

and, of course, Selena Gomez (Arsyn – doesn’t she look evil and mastermind with that short, geometrical bob?! Amazing!) team up for one of the greatest music videos of the summer.

Some of these personas do seem to make more sense than others, especially if you look at Arsyn, Headmistress, Mother Chucker, Domino, Knockout, Lucky Fiori, Destructa X, The Crimson Curse and Catastrophe. They make even more sense, once you take into consideration that the stars chose those names by themselves, so they must reflect almost on point the character they wanted to convey.

And even though Kendrick Lamar fails to prove himself once again, I really like the song (the original version lacks his unwelcome intrusion) and the video is exquisite. Dark, futuristic, visually compelling and creative – what more could one ask from a self-appointed pop princess?

Cuvantul

Adanc si disperat,
Cuvantul mut
Cauta ce nu mi-a dat
Soarele care-a uitat
Sa mai apuna.
Ma-ntreb daca pacatele mi se aduna
Si stau la vorba,
Sub vreo stea aparte.
Off, doamne,
Cuvantul mi-e departe!
Si scormonit,
Si inlesnit,
Ingenuncheat pe sub carari ascunse,
Cuvantul asta mut si, poate,-un pic acrit
Sta la baza faradelegii nesupuse
Si racaie in mine
Ce nu a gasit in tine.
Iti spun eu – ce se-ntampla nu e bine!
Dar fara tinta, fara scop,
Si poate cu paharul gol, si fara dop,
Cuvantul meu se uita cum se scurge tot.
Eu n-am cu ce, dar vreau sa ma indop!
Si nu stiu, doamne, cum sa fac apoi,
Sa-ncapa-n mine amandoi:
Si bun, si rau,
Si liniste, si zarva.
Mai ca imi vine sa fumez o iarba.
Dar ce folos, ce mare nefolos:
Sufletul meu e tot pe dos,
Si doar cuvantul meu cel mut
Ramas-a arma singura,
Si il ascut…