Mustaine: A Heavy Metal Memoir

I was at the local Barnes and Nobles a few days ago and saw this book and decided since I liked MegaDeth, the book was going to be at the very least mildly interesting.  I always imagined Dave Mustaine as the pissed off guy with a chip on his shoulder after being unceremoniously booted from Metallica was back when.  And I was right.  Partially.  The book reads very quickly and with a lot of honesty, like he wants people to read his story and see where he screwed up (and how badly he did) and what he is trying to do to make things right.  It took me two nights to finish off the 370 or so pages, even though I knew most of the story just through the Wikipedia pages Mustaine gives a lot more insights into what he was thinking at the time (even if he was completely high and/or wasted).  If you’re interested in thrash metal and guitarists it is definitely worth a read; otherwise, a lot of it might not make a lot of sense other than reading about one guy talking about when looking back he’s realized how much he has screwed up his life and how he could have made better choices, but is now trying to make it all right.

Listening to the Web through Code Organ

I shared this item through Twitter but thought it was worth a longer post since it is a very interesting concept — it “plays” websites.  Code Organ uses information on the web page to generate the key, the synth, the drums and the music for the website.  Although this isn’t ground-breakingly awesome it is a very neat way to auralize the web — much like how they have programs that create sounds for blind people to see the world around them.

Simplify Media? Color me impressed.

I have an iPhone, a MacBook Air and a desktop computer running Windows Vista and wanted an easy way to share my music between all of the devices.  My desktop computer stores all of my music and runs iTunes.  Given this and the fact iTunes is supposed to support library sharing between machines, I thought I’d be ok for sharing music between the desktop and laptop and I could just ignore the phone, cause, well, it is a phone.  I followed the instructions on how to enable library sharing  between iTunes on different machines and nothing.  So, I checked with Mr. Google and found other people were having the same issues as me.  I tried all the various tips and solutions: opening ports through the Windows firewall, changing various selections in iTunes preferences and the best I got was occasionally I’d see the shared library but as soon as I tried to look at it, it would disappear off of iTunes on the laptop.  Annoyed, I decided to give up on it and write it off as a great idea with poor execution.

Of course, you know that isn’t the end of it.  Earlier I had looked at Gizmodo’s Essential iPhone apps and noticed something called Simplify Music 2 which will stream your music from your computer to your iPhone or iPod Touch.  I checked out Simplify Media and saw that it also allowed sharing of music between desktops and laptops as well as the portable devices.  I downloaded the Windows software and installed it on the desktop.  The installation and setup was extremely easy needing nothing more than setting up a user name, password and specifying what to share.  On the laptop, the same process was done, except with the Mac version.  Again, the setup was simple except I specified I already had a user name and password.  I fired up iTunes on the laptop and BAM! there was the music that was normally on my desktop, showing inside iTunes.  I clicked on the shared library and sure enough, it worked.  I started playing random songs to make sure that it really did work.  And it did. Perfectly.

Now, being more adventurous, I decided to purchase Simplify Music 2 for the iPhone since having access to my entire MP3 library anywhere I have phone access is a definite cool thing ™.  The app installed easily (like every other iPod Touch / iPhone app) and all I did was specify my username and password from the previous installs.  Then, it showed my shared desktop library and played perfectly.

I have to give a big thumbs up to Simplify Media for the applications and making them work exactly like you’d expect without any hitches what-so-ever.  Even better, the Simplify Media software on the desktop works with more than just iTunes, it works with WinAmp and Windows Media Player as well.

How to create your own rock band in 4 easy steps

Thanks to the likes of Rock Band and Guitar Hero, we all know deep down inside that we can be rock stars.  Well, here are four easy steps to start becoming one.

  1. Go to “wikipedia.” Hit “random”
    or click http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Special:Random
    The first random wikipedia article you get is the name of your band.
  2. Go to “Random quotations”
    or click http://www.quotationspage.com/random.php3
    The last four or five words of the very last quote of the page is the title of your first album.
  3. Go to flickr and click on “explore the last seven days”
    or click http://www.flickr.com/explore/interesting/7days
    Third picture, no matter what it is, will be your album cover.
  4. Use photoshop, etc, to put it all together.

And here is what I’ve come up with:

npny_into

Now, what can you all come up with?

The ‘Most Wanted’ and ‘Least Wanted’ Songs according to science

Browsing the web, like we are all wont to do, I was sent this link by a friend:

http://blog.wired.com/music/2008/05/survey-produced.html

which led me to this link:

http://blog.wired.com/music/2008/04/a-scientific-at.html

These are respectively the ‘Most Wanted’ and ‘Least Wanted’ songs according to a questionnaire that people filled out when asked about their musical preferences. After listening to both the songs, I find the ‘Least Wanted’ song most impressive because the composer went out of their way to make the song sound as good as possible given the constraints. However, the ‘Most Wanted’ song has some amazing parts like the heavy metal guitar solo that morphs into a saxophone solo and them singing about working the night shift and ketchup.