Wednesday, January 16, 2008

New Music Post: Apocalyptica

As is my way some of the time, I shall now let you in on some of the new music I've run into.

There are weird combinations in this world of ours, which seem to be so different, yet mix so well.

Peanut butter and celery.

Sigourney Weaver and giant, slimy aliens.

Cellos and rock.

...Wait, what was that last one?

Well, it's the style of the band I've just taken a fancy to. Cello Rock. I'm not joking. As for what it is...well, it is what it sounds like. It's rock music (some will call it metal music, but I'll refrain from that, because to me, metal music always implies guys screaming like they're hacking up some phlegm) that utilizes cellos in place of the traditional guitars and basses (or at least complementing them). According to the Wikipedia article, it's been around since the 1930s, but is only really coming into its own in the last ten or so years.

So, how did I found out about this odd subgenre. Funny you should ask (though the answer isn't nearly as funny). It was actually on a Wikipedia binge, with the following path.

Casino Royale (I had just seen the movie) => James Bond (character) => List of James Bond Villains => Julius No => Mad Scientist => Albert Einstein => Germany => Culture of Germany => Music of Germany => Rammstein

Now, Rammstein is a band that I listen to and enjoy, even though I barely know any German (I basically only know as much as their songs say). But what interested me on that last article was the picture at the top, which showed them playing live with another band, made up of cellists (for reference, it's the same picture as in the cello rock article). When I looked at the caption, I saw that this group of cellists was a band called Apocalyptica. The concept of this band intrigued me, so I decided to give it a second glance. And upon further inspection (this is without even listening to one of their songs, mind you), I found the following pros and cons:

-They play rock music.
-They play rock music with classical instruments.
-They are from Finland(!!).

-Apparently, they like to headbang (which I find rather silly).

That's three pros to one con! Looks good! But, will I enjoy their music? Unlike many of my other music collections, I haven't actually heard any of their songs yet, so I wasn't willing to buy their whole discography. But where can one hear whole songs for free (legally) in this day and age? Well, why not just watch their videos? Brilliant!

Here are a few choice selections (just ignore any headbanging you may see and enjoy the music).

Hope Vol. II


The Unforgiven

Well, long story short, I thought that they were quite good (very good, in fact). So, I went onto my usual resource to purchase the songs. But, when I looked at the band's collection, I saw that there were quite a few albums. So, I did a little more research and only got the albums that were neither covers of other bands (I prefer original songs) and weren't "Best Of" albums (I'll choose the best songs, thankyouverymuch). So I ended up getting the albums Apocalyptica, Cult (and its bonus CD), Reflections, and Worlds Collide. If you're interested, but don't want to fork over the money for all of those, then I guess you could just get the "Best Of" album.

The point is, they are a new, refreshing sound, and I'm happy to have learned of them and, subsequently, share them with you. If you like them, you may also enjoy a string quartet band called bond.

Takeaway point: You don't need a guitar to become a "guitar hero."

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