features


features&front page&MUSIC22 Sep 2016 03:06 pm

As I looked at the music releases of the past couple months, I noticed a trend: Most of these groups/artists had popular releases ten years ago. That either speaks to enduring artistry or a lack of creativity within the industry. Either way, this inspired me to take a closer look at this situation, since, ten years ago, I was much more a part of the music scene.

theTRu_presentsI’m going to pit these albums (the old vs. the new) against each other, track-by-track, reminisce, and see how these groups are holding up through the years. This will probably end up being a little longer than most blog readers can hold their attention for, so if you REALLY NEED to, you can skip down below and peek at the bottom line. I will try to entertain you the entire time, though.

The first group I’ll take a gander at is THE AFTERS and we’ll compare their label debut album, I WISH WE ALL COULD WIN (10 Tracks, 41 minutes), to their latest release, LIVE ON FOREVER (10 tracks, 36 minutes). I know, technically speaking, WISH came out in 2005, but it was really thriving in 2006 so I’m counting it. As you can see from the stats, they both have 10 tracks, though FOREVER weighs in at 5 minutes lighter. Let’s go ahead and dig into the tracks…
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features&front page&Left to Write19 Dec 2012 11:41 am

I don’t pretend to have any answers a lot of the time, unless you’re one of my sons. That’s my premise. That aside, I didn’t write any book reviews yesterday as I had planned, because I was processing a Left to Write feature. In case you don’t know, Left to Write is a series I began years ago as an outlet for deeper discussions than whether or not the latest album release was any good or which artist signed on for a worldwide tour. I used to do these once a month and I’m trying to get back into that habit, but we start with one foot and follow with the other as time allows.

This one’s about asking the question of “Why?” as a response to tragedy or anything we disagree with. Obviously, it is something of a response to the recent school shooting, which has weighed heavily on our hearts. I’ve got two boys in elementary school and a wife teaching Kindergarten, so it hits home. Of course, there are questions. And some of my thoughts are captured in this issue of Left to Write. (I plan to have a Music of the Day ready for later today and maybe those book reviews as well.)

peace… love… bdg…

features&front page&MUSIC10 Oct 2012 02:58 pm

WOAH! 2013 album coverOkay, I’ve had this up for a while now, waiting for a few more items to come together for an official “sneak peek” update, but I want to go ahead and post it now.

Recently, WOW Hits released the 2013 edition of the endless series of radio hits and notable songs from the year prior to the date on the album cover. It always ends up leading to endless discussions and debates over which songs were slighted, which songs should have been included, and whether or not any of it matters.

This year, I took a different route and made up my own compilation – including a cheesy album cover to match the pattern of the WOW collections. So, I present to you, WOAH! 2013. Read. React. Discuss.

peace… love… bdg…

features&front page&reviews&walkTRu07 Sep 2012 01:27 pm

I know I promised this earlier in the week, but things have a way of cropping up. We do now have another sneak peek with some fresh content for you over on the front page. Head over to http://trudatmusic.com/sneak.htm to catch a glimpse of the new layout in action, as showcased by a WalkTRu of Lecrae’s Gravity, an album review of The Upside of Down by Chris August, and a brand new feature we’re trying out called “The Headline TRus.” I think it’s pretty good stuff and hope you do, too.

Let me know what you think, if you notice any formatting oddities, or anything like that. Expect more such updates, sneak peeks, and progress in the coming weeks.

Peep theTRu and tell your friends, too!

peace… love… bdg…

announcements&features&front page&MUSIC&reviews&reviews&walkTRu24 Aug 2012 12:04 pm

If you’re not a “fan”— Wait, I mean, if you don’t “like” theTRu. on facebook or follow me on twitter (*hint, hint*), then you may not realize what’s going on with the front page here at theTRu. (Yes, Virginia – and other states – there IS a front page.)

Well, to make a long story short, I had the best intentions when I pulled the site down for a redesign a year and a half ago, but life got in the way. Recently, I’ve picked up the plow again and the work is underway. In the meantime, as a show of good faith and to tease your palate, I posted a sneak peek at the new design and content earlier this week. This preview includes a WalkTRu of the new TobyMac album (due out on the 28th), a review of the Rhett Walker Band debut album, and a brand new Left to Write editorial.

I mention this now, because by Monday, there will be more new content, including a brand new feature. And in the coming days, you can expect more from theTRu. I’m committed to finishing the design sooner rather than later, getting the full site running again, and pumping out new content tirelessly. I hope you’ll join me.

Question: What feature do you most want to see come back?

peace… love… bdg…

americanidol&features&front page&pop culture&television21 Apr 2009 04:20 pm

EDIT: i started writing this entry sometime last week, but was interrupted a number of times, most notably when this laptop took a header… fortunately, all the files were recoverable and i’m back up and running… most of the way…

so, i’ve had two pairs of shoes and a number of socks betray me over the last few weeks… given these shoes were 17 and 11 years old, respectively, but it’s still a sad experience for me… on top of that, a third pair is hissing at me with each step, threatening the same course of action… this may seem petty, but i really like these shoes… what am i to do?

anyway, time to dig deep and try to get some writing done… this may be a long one, kiddos, so buckle up and let’s ride…

THE NEWEST AND BESTEST

now playing: Never Gonna Be As Big As Jesus – Audio Adrenaline

the most exciting news that i have to share is that of the recent releaseof the new issue of theTRu.print… that’s right, it wasn’t just a one-time thing that i did for Christmas… it’s going to be an on-going, regular thing to look forward to…

this second issue includes the same features as the first one (Left to Write, Both Sides, Album Reviews, iTRunes Playlist, etc) as well as a few other items including a feature on HOUSE, the movie and the book, and an article about John Waller… all this and it’s free, too… just head over to theTRu and download the pdf and you’re good to go… also, if you want to advertise in the next issue, get in touch with me and we’ll work something out…

YO-YO MATT

now playing: Mad Season – Matchbox 20

well, to be quick about this – since there’s a new episode on tonight and i’m sure that i’ll be long-winded about it a little later – America finally got it right by booting Matt5 off the show… unfortunately the producers and the judges love him and decided to save him, giving him another chance to ruin a perfectly good radio single… i’m not sure why they like him so much, but i’ll predict that he and Anoop bite the dust tomorrow with Lil hanging on by singing a Donna Summers tune for Disco Night tonight… (of course, that may change after i watch tonight’s show, but that’s my preliminary picks)…

WHO’S THE LOST?

now playing: Mad Season – Matchbox 20

and now it’s time for a brief look at the latest episode of Lost… it’s gonna be rough with no new episode on this week, but i’m sure we’ll manage somehow… anyway…

episode 5.13 (love that number): Some Like It Hoth… a Miles-centric storyline which immediately makes it interesting… Miles has taken over as the sarcastic and sharp-tongued character to balance out Sawyer’s maturation process and his scenes have quickly become some of my favorites… especially when he’s bantering back and forth with Hurley who has quite the grasp on wit as well…

so the episode opens with a flashback of Miles as a young boy with his mother… both have seemingly been abandoned by his father – who we earlier expected and later are assured is none other than Dr. Chang… we learn that Miles has always had this unique ability to read dead minds and that it troubles him… we also see him in a troubling 80’s-era punk outfit and hairstyle…

Meanwhile, back on the island, Miles gets recruited into the circle of trust, earning him the honor of transporting a cadaver from what will become “the hatch” and what will become the Orchid… of course, Miles wants to know what happened and he finds out that a filling from his tooth shot through his head, killing him… initially, i thought this meant that someone shot him, but then it dawned on me that the magnetic source of the hatch’s power could easily pull someone’s metal filling out of their tooth and react in such a manner…

anyway, Hurley manages to tag along, break into the circle of trust, and meddle with the relationship between Miles and Chang… perhaps the most interesting item from the episode for me was during the polar bear poop exchange between Chang and Hurley… Chang refers to the experiments on that part of the Dharma initiative as “ridiculous”… i’m getting a sense that Chang is so obsessed with this magnetic research – and apparently time travel if he’s gotten that far in his studies – that it will consume him, causing a rift between him and his family, him and the rest of the Dharma Initiative, him and the others and, most consequentially, him and the island…

ADIOS

with that, i’ll head off for now, the weather is nice and warm, and it’s a good time to go hide out in the basement to try and get cooled off… i’ll be back later for Idol, more TV talk, and some book reviews…

peace… love… bdg…

features&front page&pop culture06 Mar 2009 01:19 am

yep, so i promised to come back and chatter about Heroes… i DID watch the episode today, but i got sidetracked with a bundle of other things, so the entry “Back or BLECH?” will have to wait… i will say that i’m staying with the show for a few more episodes if that tips my hand at all…

I’ll also say that Sawyer jumping into the well was one of the best LOST moments of all five seasons so far and, even though i said i wouldn’t get into theories, and even though i can see a lot of arguments against what i’m about to say, i think we just witnessed the birth of Jacob… i’ll talk more about that later…

Also coming soon, another book review (the one about the lions), a shout out to Burn Notice as it leaves the air for a while, a glance at a handful of mid-season shows coming into view this month or next (or last), and some other nifty things… for now though, check out the front page to see a fairly new (about a week old) In RE:TRuSPECT and two-parts of a four-part series that discusses the Dove nominees… i’m sure that more will be coming there soon too, but i’m somewhat preoccupied…

’til later… goodbye to you and good riddance to T.O….

peace… love… bdg…

features&front page&SPORTS01 Nov 2008 10:30 pm

okay, now i’m ready for some football… hopefully you are too… let’s get to it…

SPORTS: WEEK NINE

to the tune of Cruella De Vil – Hayden Panettiere

Oh… i blew it with my picks last week… i was cringing at the sight of the scoreboards all day… and when it was all said and done, i ended up with my first losing record for the season… 6-8… bummer… the totals are now 66-50… at least my streaks are still in tact for both fantasay leagues… i think i’ve got a shot at another strong finish…

anyway… the winners this week (i promise this time, but don’t bet and blame me) are as follows:

Bills, Bears, Jaguars, Ravens, Bucs, Texans, Cards, Packers, Broncos, Giants, Falcons, Eagles, Colts, Redskins…

and that’s all that i have time for…

DON’T FORGET

two new items up for peeping… a new Left to Write that actually talks a bit about elections and such… and a new 25 Words or Less that covers ten albums that released in February as i continue to try and dig out of the reviews hole that i put myself in… as always… more later…

peace… love… bdg…

features&front page&general&pop culture01 Nov 2008 05:06 pm

i just finished reading another book yesterday and one particular quote that really stuck with me from it follows:

“That was when I experienced a moment of stunning understanding. Popularity had nothing to do with the truth. If these kids took a minute to ask themselves where Cap got off writing thousand-dollar checks, they’d be rioting, not applauding. But what really mattered was image. The eighth grade president was a star now. Nobody questioned it when he did something wonderful because that’s what was expected of him.”

Now, the book is called Schooled, by Gordon Korman and it’s about a group of eight-grade students, probably intended for a much younger audience than i gave it, but i think the point of that quote is downright chilling, considering the current presidental campaign that ends in four days… Karl Rove touched on it recently as well, in a brief article titled, Obama: Polls over Policy? (may not be the top article)…

Another chilling quote comes from across the pond

You have to pinch yourself – a Marxisant radical who all his life has been mentored by, sat at the feet of, worshipped with, befriended, endorsed the philosophy of, funded and been in turn funded, politically promoted and supported by a nexus comprising black power anti-white racists, Jew-haters, revolutionary Marxists, unrepentant former terrorists and Chicago mobsters, is on the verge of becoming President of the United States. And apparently it’s considered impolite to say so.

Ouch. Well, let’s get to the quick and finish up this political chatter i left hanging last time…

POLITICS: CHARACTER

A lot of folks don’t think that character really needs to come into play when it comes to picking the President or other leaders… they may cite the need for seperation of church and state or something silly like that, but they’re wrong… a leader must be a person of character… why do you think the Bible is so particular about who can lead in the church? it’s important… we have a choice between two men, one man has taken stands for his beliefs, his country, and for others… one man has become very popular, but hasn’t exactly taken any stands on anything… in fact, all he’s really taken is money from questionable sources, including the mortgage companies that where instrumental to triggering this economic crisis…

it seems to me that if you refuse to take a stand on anything then you really don’t subscribe to any real system of beliefs… of course, that’s exactly what Obama has argued on his own behalf, ironically… Think back to the whole Rev. Wright incident… Obama attended that church for a long time and looked to Wright as a mentor, but then, once it became a hinderance, he abandoned the whole relationship, stating that he never really heard anything hateful spoken from the pulpit there and that, of course, he didn’t believe in all that was presented… basically, he had spent his entire churched career giving lip-service to the church… it’s hard not to think that he’d do the same as preisdent…

POLITICS: VOTER FRAUD

well, this certainly falls inline with the whole question of character, but this is an issue that’s really sprung up in the last few weeks with the ACORN scandal and what not… i get kind of angry, though, by how it was brushed aside and swept under the rug for the most part… one case involved 1800 registrations of which only SIX were valid… now, these individulas involved were charged, but it’s been pushed aside largely because it’s “voter registration” fraud and not actual voter fraud… the problem though, and why none of these reporters would be very good chess players, is that if you were planning to commit voter fraud, the first step would have to be voter registration fraud… this is clearly step one of a process that could easily result in actual voter fraud and it should be treated as such…

HANGING CHAD

there’s more that i can talk about – i’ve been so absorbed by the atmosphere of this election push, but i don’t know that it has to do with the actual election so, i’ll just leave it at that before i get completely swept away in politics… later today, i’ll do a post about football and after that sometime soon, i have a couple books to review… and after that… who knows…

but before i go, here’s my plug for the front page… two new items up for peeping… a new Left to Write that actually talks a bit about elections and such… and a new 25 Words or Less that covers ten albums that released in February as i continue to try and dig out of the reviews hole that i put myself in… as always… more later…

peace… love… bdg…

features&front page&general&pop culture&reviews&reviews&SPORTS&walkTRu04 Oct 2008 12:27 am

Well, somehow, it’s Friday again… i’ve got to figure out how to make the week last… wait, what am i saying?… i need to figure out how to make the weekEND last a little longer… yeah, that’s more like it…

i also managed to make it through the week without buying the special edition DVD version of Iron Man from Target so as to acquire the nifty little Iron Man mask casing… that was a bit of a struggle for me actually… and i worked from home yesterday and today because the office was getting cleared out and recarpeted… hopefully it won’t stink on Monday… what else.. oh, yeah…

so i guess i was a little vague in the new Left to Write … if you were concerned that i may be depressed or anything, no need to fear… it’s more about the struggles i’ve faced over the last year and a half regarding my writing “career” and how absolutely odd it feels to be where i am right now in that regard…

see, we normally have this general assumption that when we buckle down and strive to achieve our goals, that once we get there, we’ll just keep going… that we’ll move on to better and bigger things… (see also, one of the causes of the mortgage crisis)… we never assume that we’ll achieve our goals and then end up back at the beginning… like climbing a ladder to find that the world has all the while been spinning and by the time you reach the top rung, it’s really the bottom rung…

so, when that happens, what do you do? turn around? go back? go up again? find a new ladder? and that’s more where that piece comes from…

but there are new things to discuss as well, such as the VP debate, football and television… and away we go…

MY RUNNING MATE CAN BEAT UP YOUR RUNNING MATE
– to the tune of Debate Exposes Doubt – Death Cab for Cutie

So who won the VP Debate last night?… well, it depends who you ask… i’ve heard both VP candidates declared the winner by various media outlets… and of course, it seemed like most people came out of the debate supporting whoever they supported before the debate… a classic case of hearing what you wanted to hear… seeing what you wanted to see… believing what you wanted to believe…

what i saw was that both sides made their mistakes and made their points… Gov. Palin was charming, disarming, fiesty and well put together, but she did have some moments when she stumbled, avoided certain questions and looked a little uncomfortable… overall, i thought she was great, however… Sen. Biden also did a great job overall, but he did make a few blunders and mistakes himself… one big difference, which actually scores points in a debate, is that Gov. Palin called Sen. Biden on his missteps, but the opposite wasn’t the case… Sen. Biden was on the defensive for a lot of the debate, but he battled well with his back to the ropes…

So who won the debate?… technically, if each side retained the support that it had before the debate, then it was a draw… however, in one sense, the Democratic ticket was looking for this to be a big win and since it wasn’t, that’s almost like a loss… anyway… my support was and still is with McCain and Palin…

LEATHERHEADS
– to the tune of All Star – Smash Mouth

I’m actually watching this movie as i type up this entry, so that’s one more way that my mind is on football tonight… anyway, it seems as if my teeter-totter theory has extended to my picks as well… i lost on all fronts this last week, though… lost both leagues and went 6-7 with my picks which brings me to 34-26 over the first 4 weeks… at least i’m not in the negative… and i’m certain to bounce back big time this week, especially in fantasy since i have an extraordinarily EASY matchup against sir Janke… and my picks… i’ve got a good feeling about them…

Ravens, Panthers, Bears, Falcons
Colts, Chargers, Giants, Redskins
Bucs, Bills, Cowboys, Patriots
Jaguars and Saints…

i haven’t checked to see which games i’ll get in my area, but the best games to watch will be Colts/Texans and the Redskins/Eagles for the early game, and the Bills/Cardinals, of course, for the late game… Sunday Night looks better than Monday Night yet again, but if the Vikings actually show up, it might prove otherwise… however it works out… it’s going to be another great week of football matchups…

BOXED UP
– to the tune of Welcome Back (Theme from Welcome Back, Kotter) – John Sebastian

So, i’ll try to get into some of the TV Shows that i’m watching this fall… i’ll start with Sunday… that’s right, Sunday…
MAD MEN: the duo at the Steelehouse Podcast (which i listen to and recommend) talked me into giving this show a trial… and it turns out that it’s a darn good show… there is a bit of mature content, but the characters are developed better than most every other show on television…

and on to Monday…
CHUCK… i think this was on the verge of being cancelled last year, but i’m very happy that it’s back in what appears to be full force… it’s a pretty absurd premise and all, but it’s a fun one to watch…
HEROES… also back in full force with an entirely new premise that makes more sense than any of the other seasons as far as i’m concerned… the first three episodes have aired and there’s already so many questions that have been raised and so many new plotlines that have great potential…
HOW I MET YOUR MOTHER… the new Friends… episode one started out a bit slow, but episode two finds the group back in stride with some nice lines…
BIG BANG THEORY… eh… kind of a throwaway show at times, but there’s plenty of decent jokes thrown in to make it worth watching…
PRISON BREAK… so, i’ve already talked about this one, but i will say that if i didn’t already feel invested in the show, it would’ve lost me… i mean, they’ve painted themselves into a corner because the crew has to succeed, no one can die, so the real suspense is completely gone…

Tuesday brings two new shows that have some potential…
FRINGE… JJ Abrams brings us another elaborate conspiracy-based show that has started out slowly, but has a lot of potential to become a must see… it’s kind of like X-Files on crack… though, i never really watched X-Files…
THE MENTALIST… yeah, it’s kind of a blah show, since it’s basically a rip-off of Psych, but it may be alright…

and more… another day… that is the bulk of my shows, however… next time i’ll talk about Wed-Friday, which is about five shows and then the next time after that i’ll talk about new shows that are still to come or that i haven’t decided on yet, which is also about five shows…

ON OUR WAY

well, time isn’t on my side, but if you’ve still got some to spare, check out the brand spanking new Walk TRu on Switchfoot’s Best Yet and/or the first of a series of 25 Words or Less looking back on the album releases of 2008… (this one’s January)…

peace… love… bdg…

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