Friday, August 11, 2006


Political Rock Music that is Political
Album: Black Holes And Revelations
Artist: Muse

There is rock music that is political and then there is political rock music. What Black Holes And Revelations is, is a genre of political rock that is political at the same time. Yes. Muse has written an album that captures both essences at the same time.

If they sound like they are heavily preaching on the evils of our time most of the time on Black Holes or even being political when they sing their love songs, it is only because they are acutely aware that politics play a vital role in every part of our lives. Which is quite unlike most of their peers, often more interested in crooning love ballads or trashed out stadium rockers. As such, if their agit-prop lyrics read like some kind of left wing propaganda, it is only because they know that the current perverse US administration form of justice is in fact a form of global imperialism/ terrorism.

Their music is classic rock varying from the prog-rockish opener, Take A Bow to stadium upbeat Starlight (potential hit single?) to hard rock Supermassive Black Hole (current single) to soft rock ballad Soldier’s Poem. There is even a nu-metal emo-driven Assassin where they belch on anarchism. In City of Delusions, an Americana landscape is conjured with its cajuna-strings arrangement.

As diverse as it musical style spans, this album has also drawn extreme responses. The reputed British Q magazine has called it an instant classic while, another reputable indie online rock music website has given it a low rating. So where does Black Holes stand exactly amongst both reviews?

Perhaps time will tell when critics are given a second chance to reevaluate Black Holes And Revelations. My guess is (and I believe I will not be wrong) is that this album will stand the test of time with its theme of post modern bleak existentialism - terrorism poststructuralist strong single material tracks. Almost all the music in here deserves repeated plays. Sure, the mind-boggling lyrics ain’t that poetic at times. But I think it deserves at least a 7 out of 10.

Monday, May 08, 2006


Ok Ok Ok. Is there anything about Mike Skinner aka The Streets thats worth listening to after his original pirate material or a grand dont come for free? anything at all in the hardest way to make a living that will make you want to play it over and over again? Say it's been some time since i wrote a music cd review and that's just saying something if i want to say something about this hip hop cd. hey i have all his albums. i think this boy is cute but thats not the only reason why i buy it and stare at his bald head and big eyes kinda remind me of robbie williams in his debut cd when robbie knows how to have fun and not be too serious and so is the streets who is forever taking the mickey and thats why we love him aye?

its the war of the sexes... you are not playing hard to get you are planning not getting a hard on yet. How can you not laugh at what he is gabbing? and those familiar beats thats makes u wanna shake your legs? the woman is a highly socially practiced master in body language shes calculating all of the mad facts and figures while you are pretending to listen staring at her tits... then he has fabulous ideas on how to survive... tell my mum over tea that my whole life is fucking up we've got 250 grand in the budget to go.

i mean how do you jump you know what i mean? from being a slag to a con? from being a liar to a con? or cheap superficial consumer metaphysical philosophy of memento mori where you you go buy buy buy buy buy$#%@^ i don't care about the luck and the look but driving a ferrari is fucking book. See what I mean memento mori is latin and it says we all must die :(

the streets is dating a celeb chick and he laments that it makes him feel unfamous even though he is big himself, what a stupid bloke? then he goes weepy and I almost dropped a tear when he talks about how he is like his dad or when he goes on and on about how rap and roll is the new thing and pen a sentiment with the kettle and condiments is art of hotel expressionism, fucking cool but he advises never in a boutique hotel. a joke? well he talks about two nations - london and new york how the latter is famous for shooting their celebs including the english john lennon who daided in the latter.

oh gosh i hope im making sense but even if i do not it doesnt matter because i dont think you should really read music reviews especially not this one and also because reviewers just aint making sense most of the time i mean the only way to dig your music is to listen to it first hand :P

Thursday, April 06, 2006

Any difference between the Death Penalty in US and Singapore?

After 3 inmates on death row are discovered to be innocent in Illinois, Governor George Ryan, troubled by the findings, decided to set up special clemency hearings for those sentenced to capital punishment. By the end of the hearings, 3 days before he left his office, the elected representative made the difficult decision of pardoning four men and granted blanket clemency to the remaining 167 on death row, virtually unheard of in the country.

It is that period that Deadline has captured unabashedly: interviews with inmates in death row, anti-death penalty activists, academics, and journalists as well as historical footage on the death penalty in the country. It balances precariously among opinions, facts and emotions from different camps not shying away from the sentiments of the victims of the families who insist on the death penalty and those whose son or husband sentenced to death; during the hearing.

Deadline reveals multiple perspectives and doubts on the death penalty including the accuracy and fairness of the policing system and the judiciary when it comes to such controversial cases. Many a times, there is intense pressure on the police to find the murderer and as such, resulting in torture on the suspect during interrogation. Those on death row also happen to be the poor or coloured as one activist puts it bluntly.

What has that got to with with the situation in Singapore ? One might ask.

Plenty I would argue.

In US, only those who committed homicide are sentenced to death. In Singapore, the majority on death row are those sentenced for possessing drugs. Singapore's situation, I would argue, is more disturbing.

This huge difference reveals what the society or at least the government feels strongly against. Are we a society that believes possessing illegal drugs a greater evil than murdering someone? To the extent, we believe the state has the right to kill them? Another disturbing fact revolves around the mandatory death penalty for possession of drugs simply meant the judges do not have any discretion even if mitigating factors are involved.

Many more arguments can and has been made on abolishing the death penalty which is available on the internet (and even within this blog) from the moral, human rights and even economic perspectives.

For those who have seen the film and undecided on the death penalty, the question, they might ask is, “ what has this film got to do with the situation in Singapore” given most of us have always assumed that we are run by an efficient police and judiciary system. Yet, I could not help but suspect this as the most difficult thing to prove.

Instead of asking if there exists differences between the death penalty in Singapore and US (or any other parts of the world), what we should really be aware of are the similarities, what it does in and to society; and most importantly, why it should be abolished.

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