28 March, 2014

TODAY TURNED OUT WORSE THAN I EXPECTED IT TO.

Last night, I had the perfect vision of how today was supposed to turn out. I’d wake up at seven, be a good girl and put on some sunscreen after washing my hair, and go to the supermarket to get some stuff to eat.

It didn’t turn out that way.

I did wake up at seven, but I switched off the alarm clock and went back to sleep, probably due to the fact that I’ve been sleeping in until eleven since school was out. Force of habit. Anyway, I didn’t wake up until ten, and so I was greeted with my dad’s ritualistic, “Good afternoon,” after I went downstairs.

The good thing is, I did wash my hair and put on some sunscreen.

I also did go to the supermarket, but that didn’t turn out very well, either. I needed to buy some avocados and mushrooms, but I couldn’t find the mushrooms so I hobbled over to somebody who was shoveling huge onions into trays and asked him where the mushrooms were.

He gave me an apologetic chuckle, as though immediately realizing that I’d never bought a mushroom before – which is true – and directed me to the refrigerator.

I felt like a clown.

The place had ran out of avocados, so I settled for some pears that looked like apples and a box really delicious-looking strawberries that I couldn’t wait to devour once I got home. I put all of it in my basket and headed over to the cash registers. The cashier, who was busy talking to her friend over the counter, began to bill my items as I apprehensively waited for the total amount to appear on the computer screen which I stared at awkwardly.

Then, like an ass, I told the cashier I didn’t need the strawberries because I didn’t have enough money – which was also true. It felt utterly horrible to part with those beautiful red strawberries and I carried home two ugly green pears that cost me more than a bottle of Nutella, and a package of muddy mushrooms that I had no idea what to do with.

I biked home on the wrong side of the road because I was too lazy to cross, and when I got home, I Googled “how to clean, cut and cook mushrooms”. I learned how to do so, and I decided to rehash the stir fry I’d failed at making last week. I chopped up some cabbage and onions, julienned some carrots and peppers, and anxiously cleaned and chopped a mushroom – which felt really slimy, and I was a little nervous because I hoped I wouldn’t get food-poisoned.

The stir fry turned out blackened, overly salty and with a little too much bell pepper in it. My brother and I ended up gobbling up the mushrooms and the sadly wilted, brown cabbage, and letting the undercooked-but-overcooked bell peppers slide down into the compost pit.

To satiate my still-hungry self, I ate one of the pears. It tasted very crisp and sweet, but eating it made me feel guilty – partly because they cost me so much and also because I kept wondering, “What if this were a cup of strawberries instead?”

Needless to say, the day before yesterday was a lot better. So what if my cat scratched me so bad that I bled? I got three albums off iTunes: Tantara’s Based on Evil, which I’m totally going to submit a review of to Encyclopaedia Metallum; Overkill’s Ironbound and Judas Priest’s Painkiller (okay, yes – I did hop on the Priest bandwagon a little later than most other metalheads).

I also made a fused plastic wallet on the day before yesterday. My mother told me it was very creative, but honestly, it looks like grocery bags sewn together with raven-black strands of hair, so there’s almost a hundred-percent chance I’ll never ever use it in the rest of my life.

Also, yes, I’m aware that I missed last Megadeth Monday. I’ll put up the article for “Killing is My Business… and Business is Good!” on the upcoming Monday. Without fail. Happy now?

18 March, 2014

1. LAST RITES/LOVED TO DEATH

Inlay card of the low-budget CD of Killing is my Business... and Business is Good!
Revenge n. an act or instance of retaliating in order to get even.

Imagine it’s 1983. Reagan is still president, M*A*S*H is over and done with, Michael Jackson performs the dance move that will forever be known as the “moonwalk”, and Metallica puts out their debut album full of raw riffs, lyrics about kicking ass, and five songs that were written by their ex-guitarist who was kicked out from the band in New York and was subjected to a Greyhound trip to California.

Now put yourself in Dave Mustaine’s boots.

All I can think is, “Bloody hell, he would’ve been enraged.” And he most definitely was. Out for retribution, Mustaine formed Megadeth with a vengeance. Two years later, Killing Is My Business… and Business is Good! came out, and holy shit, was it fast. But was it enough to blow Kill ‘Em All out of the water?

The opening track, “Last Rides/Loved to Death” starts off with Toccata and Fugue in D Minor played on a piano by Mustaine. Ellefson joins in with his bass guitar, which gives Bach’s classic a very eerie, desolate feel. A guitar harmony goes down at 0:29, and after that, all hell breaks loose.

If you needed one piece of music to represent how pissed off Dave Mustaine was in 1983, that opening riff at 0:55 would be your best bet. It’s fast, hostile and unforgiving – and Mustaine’s scream at 1:09 only does better to prove that.

Gar Samuelson comes in with the drums after that, and Mustaine begins to sing. Some absolutely loathe his voice, and others, like me, wouldn’t have anyone else sing over such riffs. There’s something about his tone that fits the mood very well—it’s high-pitched, it sounds vile, venomous, and… it’s perfect for singing love songs?

That’s what Mustiane describes “Loved to Death” as: his version of a love song to his girlfriend at the time, and I have to say, that’s a pretty twisted thought. The lyrics are founded off a very basic formula: boy meets girl, boy falls in love with girl, girl doesn’t love boy back, boy kills girl. “If I can’t have you, then no one will/and since I won’t, I’ll have to kill”—it’s not something you can take very seriously, but it still provides an essence to the song; a driving force.

It’s also worthy to note that Samuelson is very masterful at what he does. Even the slightly crappy production doesn’t mar his talent. His drumming is an intricate patchwork—definitely not something you could air-drum to. He and Ellefson keep the beat going at breakneck speed while Poland and Mustaine dish out riff after riff after riff.

Mustaine’s solo at 3:10 is very vivacious. The way it moves around like a living thing is, in a way, enchanting. It also seems very hyper, which provides some insight into how the lyrics were written and how the band had wanted the song to turn out. I, for one, imagine that the lyrics were put together from the point of view of a narrator whose thoughts are mentally not all there (which is actually pretty obvious, what with the manic laughter that continues after the solo).

As the song ends, the journey of Mustaine’s Revenge Chronicles begins. It doesn’t take an idiot to realize that “Last Rites/Loved to Death” has outshone Kill ‘Em All in a mere four minutes and forty-three seconds. Mustaine & Co. had delved into the depths of thrash metal with most of the metal community in their clutches.

09 March, 2014

AN APOLOGY, NOSE OINTMENTS AND MEGADETH


Hello, beautiful people!

I know I've been jumping around from blog to blog lately (i.e. Uncooked Bagels to Leather, Metal and Beer to this one) and I'm sorry about that. But I'm afraid I've grown quite fond of Blogger and Tumblr simply doesn't do it for me. So, I give you Infrared Pedestrian.

(I won't tell you what the title means yet.)

Anyway, the first series of posts on this blog will focus on the first four Megadeth albums. To improve my writing skills, I'm going to make a post of every Megadeth song from "Last Rites/Loved to Deth" to "Rust in Peace... Polaris". Don't worry: these posts will be weekly and the series will be interspersed with the random musings of this infrared pedestrian.

P.S. I'm wearing nose ointment that says "for external use only" right on the edge of my nostril. I shall go to sleep worriedly and wake up, only to be faced with a more stressful situation aka the science exam. Hopefully I'll do well and won't be too exhausted to blog!