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Basement Sports Report: Masters, NBA, MLB and WrestleMania34

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This week the Fellas talk #Masters , #Wrestlemania and the #NBA playoffs. The episode is capped off with a little local MLB talk. Subscribe and tell a friend!! @podcastBSR on Twitter

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Skull smashing opinion, analysis, news and reviews for pro wrestling, sports and more go to…

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Andrew’s Judgmental Album Reviews: Sonja – Loud Arriver (2022)

Gothic Hair Metal crawls into the JAR this week! Sonja’s full-length debut! How does it fair?

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So while I don’t have a large metal act to throw into the JAR this week; this popped up often this month as an album that had people’s interest. I tried not to spoil myself, so I just listened to a snippet and I was intrigued. An interesting combination of Gothic Rock and 80s Hair Metal seem to be the formula for this band.

Now the current iteration of this band is born out of bigotry in a way. Melissa Moore (the lead vocalist and guitarist), was in Absu, came out to her bandmates as transgendered and they fired her. So she returned to Philly to resurrect an old side project she started in 2014. So after closed mindedness, anger and a pandemic; we finally get the full length debut of Sonja. Let’s how they fuse some of the darker gothic elements with the bombastic hair metal ways.

Sonja is: Melissa Moore (Guitars & Vocals), Ben Brand (Bass & Keyboards), Gresiek Czapla (Drums & Percussion)

  • Artist: Sonja
  • Album: Loud Arriver (2022)
  • Label: Cruz del Sur Music
  • Total Track Time: 37:57

When the Candle Burns Low… starts off with some echoed vocals and a gentle guitar strum. Reminiscent a bit of Aerials from System of a Down. When the rhythm section kicks in, they’ve got a bit of an Iron Maiden gallop, but the echoed vocals remind me of old Candlemass. Even though the lyrics are fantasy draped with witches and flight, the “I’ll Never Die” feels like it’s probably directed towards the unceremonious exit from her former band. I do really enjoy the mix of musical flavors in this song. It’s a very good opener to at least whet the appetite to see what else is to come. Nylon Nights well if you couldn’t tell from the title, this starts off like the most 80s song ever. We can all infer the title is very much on the slinkier/risqué side of night time. Most likely a little diddy about being a Hooker, but I do really like the last few lines of the chorus; “Prowl in the night, Danger and desire keep me alive, Oh there’s nothing inside, nothing inside at all”Pink Fog is an interesting little shift. The way Melissa’s cadence adjusts through the song, gives me very big The Birthday Massacre vibes. It has the 80s Dokken rhythm to the drums and really does a interesting job at keeping everything in a similar vein, but bringing out the chase/surrounded feeling of the song.

Wanting Me Dead is one of those songs where I’m not going to comment much on the lyrics, because I can’t relate to them; but I understand what they’re getting across. “Priest and preacher wanting me dead, In the congregation’s head, Got the doctor wanting me dead, The prescription that I get, Mother and father wanting me dead, Like brother and sister said, Even the mirror wanting me dead, My reflection burning red”. Musically it is very basic hard rock, it has a few elements that remind me of Helloween and a touch of Bon Jovi, but generally it’s more of a hard rock song with an important feeling to express. Fuck, Then Die I’m pretty sure this was the premise for one of the dorks in Grease 2 who was trying to hookup with his girl. But honestly, I enjoy irreverent concept of if we’re gonna die, might as well fuck until Armageddon. ” I just wanna fuck all day and all night, Anything else is a waste of our time, Gonna make sure you’re feelin’ alright, We’ll be dead tomorrow” – the point is clear. However, critically, this is their weakest song so far. The instrumentation doesn’t steer into either impending doom or “fuck the fear away”, its just a bit on the generic side.

Daughter of the Morning Star returns to the rhythm guitar and bass have that Iron Maiden style gallop again, but when we get to the chorus it’s a bit too open and anthemic. It really sounds more like a Blind Guardian B-side than the goth/hair metal they’ve done so far. Also I was really hoping for a play on Morning Star with a Lucifer reference, instead of like…a fading sun or whatever the fantastical lyrics are exactly about. So this is better than the last song, but still a noticeable step down from the first half of the album so far. Moans From the Chapel exactly the song all WWE fans wanted! The reverse Katie Vick! “Tonight she arrived, To where his body lied, For one last time, In his casket opened wide, Climbed inside, It was so cold between her thighs, She rides him tightly, And her moans from the chapel heard tonight” – in all seriousness, this song starts off great. Its faster tempo, the echoed vocals work well for being inside a chapel, and the darker imagery is very metal and cool. They finally are starting to give 80s Hair Metal vibes cleanly again, like Cinderella defiling a corpse. Good stuff here. Loud Arriver I get huge Judas Priest vibes off this song. Hell I also get Ninja Sex Party vibes because the first verse is corny as hell, but fits the 80s metal motif. Small issue really just being the rhyme scheme and general flow of the chorus, while not awful; it feels extremely forced when trying to punctuate the “Loud Arriver” part. Oh I do like the little Spanish guitar break down toward the end of the song though.

Now I’ll admit it really bogged down in the middle. But we’re looking at the full-length debut and a fairly unique mixture of musical elements. It’s not often when I can reference Candlemass, Ninja Sex Party and Dokken for a band. Some of the biggest issues with different songs was not committing fully to a sound. If its supposed to be raunchy, go fast and dirty, if it’s supposed to be looming; that’s when Black Metal influences will shine.

All in all, it’s a good first album. Even the songs I was disappointed were just generic and not like musical homicide. So there’s a lot of potential, hopefully bigotry and already large political games in the music scene don’t cause this band any unnecessary issues.

 

Final Judgment: 6.85/10


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Talk The Keki – An Anime Podcast – Dragon Ball Super: Super Hero Review, Tekken Bloodline & More!

Dragon Ball Super: Super Hero has made some solid numbers in North America. Do Ethan and Mat wish for more or was this a waste of time?

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After a crazy work week, Talk the Kēki is here and they have a big episode for you. The two review the latest Dragon Ball movie, Dragon Ball Super: Super Heroes! Mat also reviews the new Netflix series, Tekken: Bloodline. Seasonal reviews continue on with Lycoris Recoil, Made in Abyss, Call of the Night, Shadows House 2, When Will Ayumu Make His Move, Vermeil in Gold, and much more!

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Ethan L. Ayala:

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