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Andrew’s Judgmental Album Reviews: Dorothy – Gifts From The Holy Ghost (2022)

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So as we know by now, the JAR just flows based off of what gets thrown at me or little bread crumbs that just work out timing wise. This week is no different. Dorothy is a band that came out of nowhere for me like an RKO.

Last year I had the radio on (I know weird right), and I heard the What’s Coming to Me song and I loved the arrangement, vocal delivery and the lyrical content was really cool. So I decided to look into them a little, and found a few other songs I enjoyed. Kept em at the back of my mind, but then I saw they had a new album a few days ago. And that brings us to now.

Dorothy is: Dorothy Martin (vocals), Devon Pangle (guitar), Jason Ganberg (drums), Eli Wulfmeier (guitar/backing vocals) & Eliot Lorango (bass/backing vocals)

  • Artist: Dorothy
  • Album: Gifts From The Holy Ghost (2022)
  • Label: Roc Nation
  • Total Track Time: 36:55

A Beautiful Life you know a combination of the guitar driven rock aspect and the lyrics really makes this feel like an Alter Bridge song with a female lead singer. Not a negative, just a really great rock song with a positive lyrical spin about being enough, resilient and believing in yourself/life. An interesting tone to start the album off with. Big Guns the open country rock twang of the guitar really adds the correct grit and tone to a song that seems to be about getting out of an abusive relationship. “Broke me down but I built myself up, Dropped my crown now I’m picking it up, Call me crazy but I’m strong enough, strong enough, Does it make you feel tough? (Strong enough), Does it make you feel tough? (Strong enough, oh)” takes some of the question out of the topic, but it definitely a solid rock song with the right amount of venom and rock to drive it as something you wouldn’t mind blasting on the radio. Rest in Peace gives kind of a Sixx AM vibe where it’s a rock song but it’s constructed a bit more like a hymnal. It crashes and drives during the chorus but it’s not exactly something you can rock out to. And yet, it’s also not something you want to break out the lighter sway for. It’s not a bad song, and coming off the last song, it punctuates the moving on “you can’t hang your chains on me, when you’re six feet deep”. This could be the same person as the previous song, or maybe a controlling parents, but either way, it works well with the last song.

Top of the World is back into the vein of guitar rock, while still moving forward with the coming out of darkness where people thought she was dead, but now she’s back to rule; essentially. The little Joan Jett kind of anthem chanting bridging before the final chorus works really nicely in this song as well. Hurricane is odd. It tries to do that more drum driven rocking song, but since it’s not guitar driven it sounds lighter and then synth effects makes it sounds like something from Meat Loaf Blind Before I Stop. So it’s got a weird 80s vibe, at first I was gonna make a Scorpions joke because of Hurricane…but that’s a lot closer than I wish it was. Not a strong song comparatively, but not offensive. Close to Me Always is more of the sweet and yet haunting ballad. The echoed piano really gets across the memory aspect of what seems to be a past lover who died. As we see with the chorus, it gets the point across of being simple yet really sweet: “So long live the old days, Your kiss in the doorway, You’re close to me always, close to me always, Gone is the old pain, You’re on to the next place, Your love fills this whole space, Stay close to me, baby, close to me always”.

Black Sheep OKAY finally we get that nice Southern Rocker guitar driven anthem. Now all of this is great and what I was expecting from my limited scope of Dorothy’s previous work. Could easily hear this on Rock Radio or ever a WWE PPV song. Touched by Fire again we start with the echoed choral kinda of chanting to open a song. Which is a southern rock gimmick I get it, but with this album being a little all over the place on tonal inspiration I could’ve done without that. And the “Na-Na-Na” chants seem to stick around through the chorus as well. God one little element really takes this song from, decent to annoying as hell to me.

Made to Die is another take on a weird break up. At least this isn’t physically or emotionally abusive from the lyrics…seems more like emotionally unavailable. “Whoa, even when you’re there I’m all alone, Even when you cry, you’re made of stone, Gave you my whole heart to break, This love was made to die”, with what feels like a combination of pure rock elements and The Offspring style of like a Pop Punk, it doesn’t sound bad. I’ll just admit the lyrics seem hollow and cliché. So there’s not a lot of substance to the song beyond the music being pretty cool. Gifts from the Holy Ghost is the titular song are really sounds like Heart. It’s got more of a 70s guitar tone, it’s done in a more vocal driven way and has this weird hippie vibe about it. I wasn’t sure if Gifts from the Holy Ghost would be religious or tongue in cheek, but nope, this is using a decent bit of religious imagery without any punch. Decent song, would definitely hear it in a country bar and might even be a fun one at concerts for the fans. HOLY CRAP there’s even an audible clap along part. This is soo 70s church revival. Again, not terrible musically, just does nothing for me really.


So there was a lot of, lets call it, weird pieces in this album. While a few songs blended into each other well with tone, others felt to jump around a bit too much. Plus usage of some more annoying song cliches are didn’t ingratiate this album to me. If we’re grading this like a test, I really only had issues with 4 of the songs, so that leaves 6 that range from tolerable to great.

Either way, it’s not what I expected from what I’ve already heard, but it wasn’t like I came in expecting Metal and got Jethro Tull. So it stayed close enough to its genre most times, and I think fans of them and the more radio rock sound will be happy with the offering.

Final Judgment: 6.4/10


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Andrew’s Judgmental Album Reviews: The Winery Dogs – III (2023)

We’ve got a Supergroup in the JAR! Fans of Mike Portnoy know Winery Dogs, but how does the new album stack up when judged?

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Finally a band I have some prior knowledge to, beyond just YouTube rabbit holes and general fishing around. The Winery Dogs is a supergroup, and I only really know about them because I’m a big Mike Portnoy fan. So whenever he does a side project, be it Porcupine TreeAdrenaline Mob or even filling in on drums for OverKill during Gigantour cause the drummer had to take a piss; I’m here for all of that.

The other two members are no slouches either, both very accomplished in their own right; hence why this is considered a supergroup. That being said, we should be in store for some great hard rock, a little bluesy, but a lot of just great musicianship and quality all around.

The Winery Dogs are: Mike Portnoy (Drums, Percussion, Backing Vocals), Richie Kotzen (Guitar, Keys, Lead Vocals), Billy Sheehan (Bass, Backing Vocals)

  • Artist: The Winery Dogs
  • Album: III (2023)
  • Label: Three Dog Music LLC
  • Total Track Time: 50:48

Xanadu has a nice quick pass, great bass frills and the singer will remind people of Chris Cornell from Soundgarden. I also really love the slight drop out during the chorus for the clap, which is just a great wrinkle throw in the song for crowd participation during live shows. This is just a fun song, taking the concept of Xanadu, but adding a little bit of a rocker edge to the reaction and lyrics makes this a banger and a half. One of the best lead off songs for an album I’ve heard in a long time. Mad World has a level of commentary or the insanity that we live through in today’s age.  The lyrics paint in the abstract where it touches just a bit on hive minds, paying for the poor decisions of leaders and/or those who’ve come before us. It has a nice midtempo beat colored with bright tons and occasionally faster fills and solos. But it also helps to illuminate the mad world aspect of things being all over the place and crazy. “So get what you can, They’ve got you compromised, You wanna laugh and bе dancing in the street, But you’re being finеd, You’ve got to sacrifice, They make mistakes and we’re the ones who pay” – just for an example of the abstract imagery but lyrics that most of us can find a correlation to. Breakthrough starts off sounding like a Rick Springfield song, and maintains an interesting 80s vibe. “And now I’m having a breakthrough, And now I know what I’m facing is the truth, We’re falling and breaking yeah yeah yeah, Now I realize because we’re who we are, We’ll never be what we were, You can leave and I can learn, You know I’m having a breakthrough”, I really love this chorus since it hammers home this concept of moving on and growing up; no amount of nostalgia or retracing steps will ever make things go back to how they were. So a song all about something or someone trying to pull the singer back, but he fights the desire and breaks through. Could be a former love, could be a former addiction; another prime example of amazing lyrical talent to evoke thoughts from different people and experiences.

Rise opens with fantastic runs and groovy blues inspired licks, hits me like something from King’s X off of Dogman. The chorus hits you with this nice rising arrangement, which is perfect since the whole song is about rising above bitterness, toxicity and the bad vibes. Which everything about this song works to perfection. The general groove and tempo is funny and faster, while the chorus hits you with that slightly slower but soaring moment of success.  Stars hits you with some interesting lyrics immediately. “I’ve been in a condition of doubt, I don’t know if I’m in it or out, Don’t say that I disappoint you, Or I’m the reason, Maybe we both expect too much?”. So another song about reaching for something or trying to potentially suppress something but it wells about ready to burst. It continues that hope flavored tempo and tone, so its most likely the former of reach for the light at the end of the tunnel. But again, the lyrics mixed with just masterful arrangements, solos, runs, fills and general musicianship makes this a trip I almost forgot to be critical over. The Vengeance is an interesting take on a toxic relationship of some kind and revenge. There’s a line in the song about the weak seeking revenge and he’ll just suck it up and see how it all plays out. So with the first two thirds of the song being about struggling in this life and situation, then leaving things up to karma to decide implies this weight being lifted off the person. All the struggles of life, hatred, pain…alleviated with the notion of they’ll get what’s coming to them eventually.

Pharoah is definitely unique in the approach to what seems like a groovy love song. Musically it sounds like a mashup of a few different Pearl Jam songs, but this concept of going into a relationship like its a battle, but she quells his aggression and worships him like a… Pharoah? Imagery is a little weird, not gonna lie, song itself is still fun but the lyrics leave me wondering what exactly is happening in this song. Gaslight opens with the most prog opening they’ve done so far this album. A little erratic but as soon as the drums click in we rush into the lyrics and its gives off this muddled chasing vibe; which fits a gaslighting song amazingly. “Right from the start you’re bringing crazy, That’s how you like to play, Twist up the mind and keep it hazy, Do what you wanna do but don’t gaslight me”; the chorus speaks volumes and I do definitely enjoy the more Dream Theater moments of this song to hammer across the gaslighting vibe. Lorelei caught me by surprise. Its such a beautifully depressing song. Instrumentation is like a combination of 50s rock and great BB King blues. I love the chorus; “Sugar coat my heart, Lead me from my woes, A siren story’s told, Oh Lorelei, oh Lorelei, Sing me a song, I’d rather die than go on”.  The Red Wine is just a rock & roll church revival style song. The lyrics are definitely meta about the band just wanting you to celebrate, partake in the celebration and wine. So things end on a fun and very light song, no heavy lyrics, no intricate chord progression; just an old fashion song about celebrating together.

There’s a lot to love about this album. Some great musical work, fun arrangements that bring some songs to life and even songs with a tangible point. Pharoah still sits weird with me, and the last song is just a fun festival song; so there’s not really a lot of critique since it knows what it is. I do also enjoy the more abstract lyrics a few of the songs have. Abstract lyrics allow for listeners of all backgrounds and beliefs to have the song mean something different to them. So its a wonderful concept to not alienate potential fans.

If you like some of the bands mentioned, or just really damn good bluesy hard rock – this is an album for you. It’s going to be sitting at the top of my list currently, but it’s only February. Lets see how long it lasts up top in Xanadu.

Final Judgment: 9/10


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Mitchell’s Hyrule Puro-Resu Results & Report! (1/31/23)

The Bracket of Courage!

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The Legend of Zelda: The Ring of Destiny, Chapter 39

HPW’s Fourth Annual Triforce Tournament continues, and the opening round wraps up with the Bracket of Courage! And LINK IS BACK!! Will the Hero of Hyrule win the tournament all over again?

OFFICIAL RESULTS

  • Bracket of Courage: Ralph VS Kēvín Gibdo; Kēvín wins and advances.
  • Bracket of Courage: Cia VS Harlequin; Harlequin wins and advances.
  • Bracket of Courage: Fin Balure VS Garo Master; Fin wins and advances.
  • Bracket of Courage: Link VS Volga; Link wins and advances.

PLAY BY PLAY

HPW and HXS TV set the scene!

Are you ready four the finish? The Bracket of Courage closes the opening round, and this could be the biggest moment in the tournament already! First: Kēvín is coming off his win to become the Gibdo of All Gibdos, but he takes on the young and hungry Lad from Labrynna! Second: The Faces of Evil have Harlequin representing them in hopes of increasing their odds. Third: Fin Balure is furiously determined to redeem himself from losing the HPW Termina Championship to the man now simply known as Ganon.

And last but far from least, we see the return of LINK! The Hero of Hyrule returns from the brutal Blood Match at Clash of Fates, but can he show that there is no fate but what we make? Who survives this insane first round line-up? The HPW Triforce Tournament in Eldin Canyon reaches the finale, now!

 

Ralph VS Kēvín Gibdo!

The Lad from Labrynna is still looking for his chance to shine, but he’s running into the Gibdo of All Gibdos! Will Ralph be able to survive into the second round? Or will Kēvín’s transformation bring about a second coming for The Dark Forces?

The bell rings and the two circle. Fans rally as the two approach, they tie up and Kevin easily powers Ralph to a corner. Ralph shouts for the ropebreak and the ref counts. Kevin lets off, but he keeps his eyes on Ralph as he backs up. Ralph comes back, feels out a grapple with Kevin, and they tie up again. Kevin again powers Ralph back, and they end up on the ropes. Ralph shouts again and the ref counts again, and Kevin lets off again, still staring Ralph down as he backs up. Ralph gets annoyed by that, and he rushes right up. But Kevin throws him aside! Ralph staggers up to his feet and ends up in a corner and fans cheer.

Ralph dusts himself off, storms back up on Kevin, and he throws a big forearm! Kevin’s head turns to the side, but then he looks right back at Ralph! Ralph throws another forearm, but again Kevin just looks back at Ralph. Ralph throws forearm after forearm, then winds up, but Kevin choke grips him! CHOKE- NO, Ralph slips free of the slam! Ralph goes for that arm, but Kevin fights off the takedown. Kevin whips Ralph away to ropes, then scoops him! SIDEWALK SLAM! Cover, TWO! Fans rally while Kevin stands over Ralph. Ralph drags himself up with Kevin’s leg, then he throws body shots. But Kevin CLUBS him back down!

Kevin pushes Ralph to the ropes and CHOKES him! The ref reprimands and counts, and Kevin lets off at 4. Ralph sputters, Kevin CLUBS him on the back again! Kevin whips Ralph to ropes, but Ralph holds ropes to stop himself. Kevin runs in but Ralph BOOTS him back! Ralph KICKS Kevin in the leg, then again, and again! Kevin hobbles, Ralph pursues, but Kevin ROCKS him with a right! Ralph flops against the ropes and fans fire up. Kevin stands Ralph up to bump him off buckles. Kevin brings Ralph around to another corner and bumps him off more buckles. Kevin goes for a third corner, but Ralph blocks that buckle bump!

Ralph throws body shots, he backs Kevin down, and fans are torn. Ralph KICKS Kevin in the leg again, then KICKS him in the other leg. Ralph SOBATS, runs, but Kevin CLOBBERS him! Fans fire up as Kevin stands over Ralph again. Kevin drags Ralph up, then choke grips! Ralph CLUBS the arm, kicks Kevin low, and is free! Ralph fireman’s carries Kevin! But Kevin is too heavy for him and Ralph drops to his knees! Kevin ELBOWS Ralph, choke grips again, and CHOKE SLAMS! Cover, TWO!! Ralph survives and fans fire up! But Kevin keeps cool and he waits on Ralph to stand back up. Ralph crawls to a corner, drags himself up, and Kevin runs in to SPLASH!

Kevin scoops Ralph to SNAKE EYES! Kevin runs to BOOT Ralph down! Fans fire up while Kevin slashes his throat! Kevin drags Ralph up, gut wrenches, and he hits a TOMBSTONE PILEDRIVER! Cover, Kevin wins!

Winner: Kēvín Gibdo, by pinfall (advances to the next round)

Another win for the Gibdo of All Gibdos, and it was the fastest win in the whole tournament! Maybe in this tournament’s history! Will he keep this momentum going until he is the champion of all champions?

 

Cia VS Harlequin!

Speaking of The Dark Forces, the Dark Sorceress now steps up to represent. But will she beat the literal Bokoblin clown to then face her teammate? Or will this Face of Evil be laughing all the way to the bank?

Harlequin is already laughing at the bell. He and Cia circle, feel things out, but Harlequin’s laughter is annoying Cia. Cia kicks low, CLUBS Harlequin on the back, then clamps on a headlock. Harlequin powers out, then dodges Cia to run and run her over on the return. Harlequin laughs some more, but Cia gets up to kick him again. Cia wrenches an arm to a wristlock, Harlequin reaches for ropes, but Cia brings him away. Harlequin rolls, spins, wrenches, and wrangles Cia down with a top wristlock! Fans boo but Harlequin just laughs. Cia sits up, rolls back, and arm-drags Harlequin away. Harlequin comes back, but into another arm-drag!

Cia has the armlock and she grinds Harlequin, but he keeps laughing! Harlequin moves around, gets to his feet, and he goes around and around with Cia to whip her into the corner hard! Cia staggers back, into a SIDE LEG SWEEP! Harlequin then gets the legs for a LEG TRAP CRADLE! TWO! Cia gets free and fans rally up, but Harlequin still smiles. Harlequin stalks Cia, clamps onto her with a chinlock, and he leans on the hold, grinning the whole time. Cia endures, fans rally up, and Cia reaches out for ropes. Harlequin brings her away from the ropes, but Cia slips around and lifts Harlequin for and atomic drop!

Harlequin clutches his butt, but still manages to laugh. It’s more “Oho ho ho” than “Hahaha” right now, but he’s technically smiling and laughing. Cia kicks Harlequin low again, brings him around, and lifts for another atomic drop! Harlequin hops around, still clutching his butt and going “Oho ho ho.” Cia storms up again but Harlequin blocks the kick this time. Harlequin wags his finger, and DRAGON SCREWS the leg! Harlequin laughs while he holds onto the leg, for a GROUND DRAGON SCREW! Harlequin has the leg again, but Cia kicks him with the other. Cia kicks Harlequin away, but Harlequin cartwheels through!

Fans boo as Harlequin laughs while creeping around the ropes. Cia shakes out the bad leg as she stands up, just completely at a loss over Harlequin’s behavior. Cia and Harlequin circle, approach, and they tie up. Harlequin wrenches an arm, but then goes after the bad leg! Harlequin trips Cia, has a standing toehold, and he stands on the other leg while twisting the ankle! Cia endures, reaches for ropes but she’s too far. Cia shakes her legs free, and she kicks Harlequin away again. Harlequin rushes back in but Cia sidesteps him. Harlequin rebounds off ropes, but Cia kicks low! But that’s Cia’s bad leg!

Cia shakes her leg out, runs, but Harlequin dropkicks her legs out! Cia hobbles, Harlequin reels her in and hits a DDT! Cover, TWO! Harlequin still laughs as he clamps onto Cia’s leg. Harlequin turns Cia over, to SMASH the knee into the mat! Cia clutches the leg, but Harlequin grabs at it again. Cia scrambles and gets the ROPEBREAK! The ref counts, Harlequin KICKS Cia’s bad leg as he lets off. Fans boo but Harlequin still smiles. Cia goes out to the apron to shake out the bad leg, but then Harlequin runs in to WRECK Cia with a dropkick! Cia falls to the floor and fans boo even harder, but Harlequin is busting up laughing!

Harlequin goes out after Cia but the ref tells him to get in the ring. Harlequin grabs at Cia’s bad leg, but she again kicks at him with her good leg. She gets him under the chin and Harlequin lets go. He laughs and says, “Okay, okay, sorry.” But then he turns around into a SHOTGUN DROPKICK! They both go down and fans fire up! Harlequin isn’t laughing anymore! He sits up and grumbles, “Lucky shot!” Cia gets up and back into the ring, but Harlequin pursues. Cia hobbles, and Harlequin CHOP BLOCKS her. Fans boo and Cia clutches her leg again, but Harlequin drags her right up. SHINBREAKER! Cia falls, Harlequin pushes her down and covers, TWO!

Harlequin is annoyed but the fans rally for Cia. Harlequin drags Cia up, grabs the leg again, and lifts her, SHIN- NO, Cia sunset flips through! TWO, and they both get up quick! Harlequin rushes in for the leg but Cia slips around him for a BACKSTABBER! But that’s double-edged given the bad leg! Cia still crawls after Harlequin and grabs at an arm! Harlequin resists the crossface, but Cia throws down elbows into his shoulder! Cia grapevines the arm and has the BLACK MAGIC CROSSFACE! Harlequin endures while fans fire up! Harlequin flails around, reaches out, and Cia’s struggling to hold his arm back with her bad leg!

Cia loses the grapevine and Harlequin crawls forward with both arms! But Cia just shifts into a BULLY CHOKE! Harlequin endures, fans chant for him to “TAP! TAP! TAP!” but Harlequin lurches forward to get the ROPEBREAK! Fans boo, the ref counts, and Cia lets off at 4. Cia hobbles away while Harlequin sputters and catches his breath. Fans rally for “CIA! CIA!” as she watches Harlequin. Harlequin stands up, Cia storms over and throws haymakers! Cia CLUBS Harlequin over and over, then whips him to ropes. Harlequin ducks ‘n’ dodges, then hits a NECKBREAKER DROP! Harlequin dances around as he waits on Cia to get back up.

Cia stands, Harlequin kicks her low and reels her in, but Cia powers out of the facelock! Harlequin storms up but into a SCORPION KICK! Cia reels Harlequin in for a CODE BREAKER! Cover, TWO! Cia hobbles again, and she waits on Harlequin to stand up. Cia jumps up, BACKSTAB- NO! Harlequin holds ropes and Cia falls on her back! Harlequin grabs Cia’s bad leg, uses that to roll her back to her feet, and then dragon sleepers! TWISTING NECKBREAKER!! Cover, Harlequin wins!

Winner: Harlequin, by pinfall (advances to the next round)

Harlequin’s “Twisted Sense of Humor” takes down the Dark Sorceress! Cia won’t have to worry about facing her teammate now, but will Kevin avenge her? Or will the Faces of Evil continue to dominate the tournament?

 

HPW hears from The UnderWorld Order!

Hollywood ReDead, Gomess, Death Sword and Ted Beedle Ossi defeat another group of Stalfos Bokoblins, aka Stalkoblins. Well, ReDead, Gomess and Death Sword do, Beedle was cowering behind a shield. The group continues moving through the dark maze that is the Thyphlo ruins, but then they stop. They look around, and Gomess asks, “Have we been going around in circles?” ReDead says, “I don’t know! The torches are all the same, I can’t tell if we’ve seen these before or if they’re new!” Death Sword shouts, “Then how the [censored] are we supposed to find where they put Āléx?!” The three start arguing, but Beedle speaks up.

Beedle looks past them and points to a glowing in the distance. “Could that be it?” The others look over, and there’s an eerie green-blue light. ReDead asks, “Is that blue fire?” Gomess says, “It’s more like green fire.” Death Sword says, “I dunno, it’s a bit of both. Y’know, like teal or aquamarine.” The others ask, “What?” Death Sword is a bit embarrassed but ReDead has them all move on towards the light. As they approach, they notice the light moving. It goes up gently, stays put for a second, then comes back down gently, and repeat. Beedle asks, “Is it… breathing?” The uWo gets closer, and they see the light is coming from an orb.

And that orb is attached to a chain that forms a necklace, around someone, or something, very, very big. Gomess whispers, “Is that Hinox?” Death Sword whispers, “The hell is he doing here?” ReDead whispers, “And what is with the glowing ball around his neck?” Beedle whispers, “It has to be something important, obviously! Let’s take it!” The four creep closer, and they each look to each other. They all expect someone else to grab the glowing ball, and this turns into a whispered argument. Eventually, Death Sword is volunteered as the tallest of them. Death Sword reaches out, but then Hinox’s one big eye opens up!

“So they were right!” Hinox says as he sits up. “You guys did decide to walk in here to get Alex back!” Beedle corrects Hinox, it’s “Āléx.” “That’s what I said. Alex.” “No, you keep saying it Al, Lex. It’s Ay, Lex.” Hinox and Beedle go back and forth with “Alex” and “Āléx,” and ReDead tells them to stop! ReDead asks about the glowing ball, and Hinox says, “Oh, this is the key to getting Alex back.” Beedle says, “Āléx, and I was right! We gotta get the ball!” The uWo, except for Beedle, jump on Hinox! They CLUB away on Hinox, but Hinox explodes out! Hinox ROCKS ReDead with a right, pushes Gomess away, then BOOTS Death Sword!

Gomess comes back, throws hands, but Hinox HEADBUTTS Gomess! Death Sword swings on Hinox but Hinox blocks Death Sword’s punch, to then HEADBUTT Death Sword! But ReDead grabs at the ball! ReDead pulls on the chain and it starts to choke Hinox! Hinox shouts for ReDead to stop, but ReDead keeps pulling! Hinox grabs at the chain, unlocks it, and ReDead staggers away as he has the whole thing! The uWo regroup and Hinox grumbles. “Fine, you can have it. The center of the ruins is just over that way. There’ll be a special platform for you to put the ball in, and that’ll raise a special platform, and, well, you’ll see.”

The uWo head off, find the space Hinox described, and see a square pedestal with the same teal light glowing from it. There’s an indentation, the ball is placed in it, and both square and ball go from teal to orange light. And up from the ground just ahead rises a conical shaped structure! Glowing in a similar orange light is the eye-shaped symbol of the Sheikah. “Of course it’s the Sheikah,” ReDead grumbles. “Whatever. Āléx must be inside there.” ReDead leads the way and they all walk inside, only a platform glowing blue. The platform lowers, revealing itself to be an elevator. The uWo enters inside a large underground space that feels both futuristic, yet ancient.

The space is lit by glowing blue pyramids atop sculpted stone. There are also blue runes running along the walls, with water shimmering as it reflects that light. But what the uWo focuses on is the sarcophagus from HyruleMania! They all rush forward, knowing Āléx is inside! Beedle knocks on the sarcophagus, asking if Āléx is okay in there. No answer. Gomess and Death Sword try prying it open but it is sealed shut. Then the group notices the runes on the sarcophagus.

SheikahIt by Cartridge88

ReDead asks, “What language is this? Wingdings?” Beedle says it’s just Sheikah. Beedle gets out his Sheikah Slate to translate. ReDead rolls his eyes and says, “Oh of course. Create a special alphabet, then sell a device that can translate it. Scam artists.” Beedle tells him to shut up and listen. “If the… U… W… O… Wait, us? If the uWo is… reading this… We’ve got two words for ya, dot dot dot. Oh wait a minute!” ReDead is pissed at the “smug” Sheikah for trolling them, and he starts beating on the sarcophagus! The others tell him to stop, that’s not helping things! ReDead says, “Whatever! Let’s just get this outta here and figure it out later.”

They haul the sarcophagus back to the elevator, it goes up, but things get really crowded once they return to the surface. With a lot of arguing, cursing, and Beedle shouting, “PIVOT! PIVOT!” the uWo figures out how to get the sarcophagus out of the cone and they hurry to retrace their steps. But then more Stalkoblins show up! Or perhaps, the ones they beat up earlier are back on their boney feet? Either way, the uWo does their best to run past them to avoid fighting again. But there are so many, they end up making some really sharp turns, lose control, and lose hold of the sarcophagus! IT ENDS UP HITTING A TORCH AND CATCHING ON FIRE!!

“AAAAALEEEX~!” they all shout! “NOOO~!” The sarcophagus is burning, but then BLAM!! Alex busts out of it!! But he’s on fire, too!! Alex shakes free of the burning rags, and the flames cast his silhouette. Alex looks at the uWo (and into the camera) with piercing teal eyes. What has been reborn from the ashes that was Alex the Gibdo? And with the HPW Trios Championship #1 Contenders Gauntlet on the horizon, will this be the second life of the UnderWorld Order?

 

Fin Balure VS Garo Master!

The Zora Rock ‘n’ Rolla lost the Termina Championship at HyruleMania, but he looks to redeem himself by aiming for a bigger prize! Will the leader of Arrow Club hit the mark? Or will he lose to one of the Three Great Masters?

The bell rings and fans sing, “GAROOO~! GARO, GARO, GARO~! GAROOO~! GAROOO~!” but plenty of fans chant, “Arrow Club! Arrow Club!” Fin and Garo Master circle, tie up, and go around. They end up on ropes, go around, and Fin has control. The ref counts, Fin lets off with a pat on the shoulder. Garo keeps cool and circles with Fin again. Fans rally and duel, the two tie up again, and Fin wrenches to a wristlock. Garo rolls, kips up, wrenches and hammerlocks, but Fin switches that onto him. Fin wrenches to a wristlock, but Garo spins, backflips, and wrenches back! Fans applaud this exchange, but Fin rolls, spins and then arm-drags Garo.

Fin keeps on the armlock, Garo headscissors back, but Fin kips free. The two stand off and fans fire up! Fin nods while he and Garo reset. They circle again, fans rally up, and the two tie up again. Fin headlocks and grinds, but Garo powers up and out. Fin runs Garo over but Garo kips right back up! Things speed up, Garo rolls to dodge, then handsprings back! Garo runs to RANA Fin out of the ring! Fans fire up and Garo builds speed, to fake Fin out and do handsprings in place! Fans cheer but Fin is upset that Garo is showing off. Fin grabs a chair! The ref tells him no, put the chair down. Fin stands the chair up in the corner to take a seat.

Fans applaud as Fin eggs Garo on. Garo runs in, Fin kicks but Garo blocks it! Garo throws the foot down and rushes in, but Fin sends him into the chair! Fans lose their minds as the chair crunches! The ref checks Garo, but Fin snatches another chair from the timekeeper’s area! The ref tells Fin to put that chair down, but Fin again sits it up. Fin drags Garo over and sits down in the chair while he clamps on a neck wrench! Fans cheer the cheekiness while Garo endures! The ref counts, Fin lets off and the ref takes this chair away. Fin drags Garo up but Garo throws body shots. Fans chant “We Want Tables!” but this isn’t No Disqualifications!

Garo UPPERCUTS Fin, then runs, but into a DROPKICK! Fin covers, ONE!! Garo gets to ropes while Fin scowls. Fin drags Garo up, fans rally and Fin clamps on the abdominal stretch! Garo resists but Fin powers up to tighten it. Fin taunts Garo by “pulling the bow string” to shoot an imaginary arrow at him. Garo endures, but Fin shoves him down to a cover, TWO! Garo goes to a corner, Fin storms up and stomps him down. Fin sits Garo up, goes corner to corner and back again, to HESITATION DROPKICK! Cover, TWO! Garo is still in this but Fin keeps focus. Fans rally and duel, Fin drags Garo up and bumps him off buckles. Fin CHOPS and Garo flounders while his chest is stinging!

The “WOO~!” echoes out, and then fans chant, “One More Time!” Garo shakes his head but Fin puts him in another corner, to CHOP! Garo staggers and stumbles but Fin stalks up behind him. Fin bumps Garo off buckles, hushes the crowd, and he CHOPS again! Garo leans against the ropes as his chest stings even more. Fin whips Garo corner to corner, runs in and CHOPS again! And CHOPS! And CHOPS, CHOPS, but Garo CHOPS in return! Garo CHOPS and CHOPS and CHOPS, but Fin isn’t affected! Fin CHOPS Garo again and Garo sits down in the corner! Fans cheer that stinging exchange and Fin dusts himself off.

Fin whips Garo corner to corner but Garo reverses hard! Garo RAMS into Fin, goes to the apron, ENZIGURIS, then springboard MISSILE DROPKICKS! Fans fire up as Fin flounders out of the ring! Garo builds speed, goes up and up and SPRINGBOARD SOMERSAULT SEATED SENTONS!! Direct hit at the ramp and fans are thunderous as Garo lands on his feet! Garo drags Fin up and puts him in the ring. “That was Awesome!” but then Garo springboards for a FLYING LARIAT! And then STANDING MOONSAULT! Cover, TWO! Garo drags Fin to a drop zone as fans rally and duel hard as ever! Garo climbs up, leaps, but Fin gets under!

Garo keeps moving, he comes back but Fin moves! Garo goes Spider-Man in the ropes, but Fin SHOTGUNS him out to the floor! Fans fire up again as now Fin… just rolls out of the ring. Fin smirks and fans boo for being trolled. Fin bumps Garo off the apron, then brings him around the way. Fin whips Garo, but Garo reverses and Fin hits railing hard! So hard, that the railing moves! Fans are thunderous again as Fin drags himself from where he ended up in the crowd. Garo borrows an idea from Fin and sits a chair up nearby. Garo sits Fin in the chair, and CHOPS him! Garo shakes out his hand, goes to the other corner, and runs in, into a CHOP from Fin!

Fans “WOO~!” and Garo is furious as his chest is stinging again! Fin brings Garo around, sits him down, and gets space! Fin runs in to SHOTGUN Garo against the railing! Fans fire up as Garo flops out of the chair! Fin puts Garo in the ring and then he climbs up the corner. Garo stands, Fin DIVING DOUBLE STOMPS anyway!! Cover, TWO?!? Garo survives and Fin can’t believe it! But the fans are thunderous again! “This is Awesome!” as Fin drags Garo up, but Garo fights the Half Hatch! Garo wrenches and hooks a leg, but Fin fights the lift! Garo pushes Fin away to then ROUNDHOUSE! But Fin PELES! Both men are down and fans are loving this!

A standing count begins as fans rally up harder than ever. Garo sputters and crawls to ropes, as does Fin. They are in opposite corners, and they stand at 5 of 10. Garo runs corner to corner, but Fin dodges! Fin CHOPS, whips corner to corner, but Garo goes up and over and keeps moving! Garo jumps to DOUBLE STOMP Fin down! STANDING SHOOTING STAR! Then a deadlift LEG CAPTURE SUPLEX! Bridging cover, TWO!!! Fin survives, Garo is stunned, and fans are electric! Garo steps over Fin, positions him in the drop zone, and then goes up top. GARO 630- NO! Garo has to bail out as Fin moves! Fin LARIATS Garo down!!

Fin hurries to drag Garo up in a dragon sleeper! BLOODY SUNDAY!! Cover, TWO?!?! Garo survives Fin’s best shot and no one can believe it! Fin drags Garo back up, dead weight as he is, for the- NO, Garo slips free of the Depth Charge! SCREW HIGH KICK!! Fin staggers about, Garo wrenches and NORTHERN LIGHTS! Bridge and a roll through, to a deadlift BRAINBUSTER! Cover, TWO!?! Fans hope these two “FIGHT FOREVER!” but this has to end somehow! Garo goes up top again, he takes aim, GARO 630 CRASHES DOWN!! Fin avoids disaster, then goes up top! COUP DE GRACE!!! And then DEPTH CHARGE!!! Cover, Fin wins!!

Winner: Fin Balure, by pinfall (advances to the next round)

The Zora Rock ‘n’ Rolla just rocked Garo Master and takes him out of the tournament! After a red hot start like that, will Fin go all the way to the top?

 

Link VS Volga!

Just when we didn’t think we’d see him again, the Hero of Hyrule returns! Will Link once again win the Triforce Tournament to get back to the Triforce Championship? Or will the Dragon Knight burn down this comeback story before it even begins?

Talk about a comeback, Link brought out his original green tights from the original tournament! Fans chant “Welcome Back! Welcome Back!” as he makes his way to the ring. Volga shows respect with a handshake, and fans cheer the sportsmanship. The bell rings and the two circle. They feel out the grapple, but Link backs up. Link shakes out his hands, and fans rally up as he and Volga reset. They tie up, are in a deadlock, and Volga wrenches an arm. Volga wristlocks, but Link rolls, spins, kips up, but he wobbles and Volga wrangles him back down. Volga has a top wristlock, but Link bridges to keep his shoulders up.

Link rolls, turns the wristlock onto Volga, but Volga rolls and spins. Volga kips up smoothly, but Link arm-drags Volga down to an armlock! Volga headscissors, Link kips free, but Volga arm-drags. Link headscissors, Volga kips free, the to stand off, and fans applaud the exchange. Link is clearly working off that ring rust, but he isn’t letting it deter him. Link shakes his hands out again as he circles with Volga. They tie up again, are in another deadlock, but Volga headlocks. Volga grinds Link, but Link throws body shots. Link powers up but can’t power out as Volga holds on tight. Volga eggs Link on, and Link throws more body shots.

Link powers Volga into a corner, referee Sahasrahla counts, and fans applaud as the two slowly let off. Link and Volga reset again and fans rally back up. They feel things out, but Volga shoots in to get around to waistlock. Link fights the lift, throws elbows, but Volga lets him spin around. Link fights the Northern Lights, CLUBS Volga, then goes to suplex. Volga fights that, then he goes to suplex. Link resists, and the two fight for suplex control. Volga suplexes Link up and over! Volga floats to the cover, TWO! Volga clamps onto Link with a chinlock and grinds Link down. Link endures and fans rally up but Volga leans all his weight on him.

Volga eggs Link on more, and Link fights up. Link pries at the chinlock, slips out the back and hammerlocks, but Volga switches the hammerlock onto Link. Link reaches around, working on an escape. Link sits, rolls, reels Volga in for a monkey flip! Link holds onto the arm as he rolls back, and he sits Volga up! Volga ducks the knee and rolls Link up! TWO, both men get up, but they each block the other’s superkick! Fans fire up while Link and Volga tell each other to let go. They argue about it, and then agree to slowly let each other down. They both set the other’s foot down, let go, and stand back up. Fans applaud, but then Volga ENZIGURIS!

Link staggers, fans boo, but Volga storms up to whip Link to a corner. Volga runs in to back elbow, then whips Link corner to corner. Volga runs in again, but Link dodges! Link runs back in to RAM his shoulder in! Link then slips out to the apron and pushes Volga from the corner. Link hesitates, but he still slingshots for the SLING- NO, Volga ducks the Sling Shot lariat and runs, to SLINGBLADE! Volga fires up, he waits on Link to stand back up, and then runs in to SLINGBLADE again! Fans boo while Volga goes to the corner. Volga climbs up, takes aim, for the FROG SPLASH! Cover, TWO!! Link survives and fans are shocked at how close that was!

Link rolls out of the ring and staggers to the railing. Volga builds speed to DIVE! Direct hit and Link is sent back into the railing! Volga gets back in the ring and builds speed again, to DIVE again! Another direct hit! Fans are torn as Volga goes into the ring again. Volga builds speed once again, but Link slides in! Volga slows down enough to just tumble out of the ring, and he turns around into Link’s DIVE! Fans fire up as Volga hits railing now! Link roars and fans fire up more, and then he gets in the ring. Link builds speed and he DIVES again! Now they’re even! Link then puts Volga back in the ring and covers, TWO!

Link pounds the mat and fans rally behind him. Link drags Volga back up, throws forearms, then spins, but Volga ducks the rolling elbow! Volga runs and returns, SLING- NO, Link throws Volga away. Volga storms back up, but into a SUPERKICK! Volga wobbles, Link wrenches his arm to HOOK SHOT! Link then reels Volga in to fireman’s carry, for BOMBOS MEDALLION! Cover, TWO! Volga survives but Link keeps his cool. Link goes up top now, but Volga hits the ropes! Link gets tripped up and lands on his sword! Link winces as he sits up, but Volga is right on him! Volga brings Link up, but Link resists the superplex!

Fans fire up as Link throws body shots but Volga CLUBS him on the back. Volga CLUBS Link again, but Link throws more body shots. Link then throws forearm after forearm, and he knocks Volga down! Fans fire up and Link stands back up, for the FIRE ARROW! Cover, TWO! But Link goes right back up, for the ICE ARROW! Cover, TWO! Link deadlifts Volga for the FALCON ARROW! Cover, TWO!! Volga survives all three arrows, but Link roars! Fans fire up as Link runs, but Volga ducks the Shining Wizard! But the BOOMERANG HEEL comes back! Link’s bringing back all the classics as he takes aim! But Volga avoids the Spin Attack!

Link hobbles, Volga swings but Link catches him to a clinch! Volga throws elbows to resist! Volga elbows away on Link, then throws Kawada Kicks! Volga tops it off with a KICK! Link staggers, Volga whips, but Link reverses to wrench! Volga ducks the Hook Shot, Link ducks an enziguri, Volga handsprings and runs. Link follows but Volga dodges the Master Sword! Link runs back in, Volga back drops him, but Link lands on his feet! Both men turn around, DOUBLE SUPERKICKS collide!! Both men fall down and fans are thunderous! “This is Awesome!” as Link and Volga both stir and Sahasrahla starts a standing count.

Volga and Link crawl to opposite corners as fans rally up. The count is 5 of 10, both men drag themselves up with the ropes to stand at 7. They stare down from across the way, and Volga eggs on the “former Hero of Hyrule!” Link snarls and they both run in! MASTER SWORD! Link roars and fans are thunderous again! Link drags Volga up, underhooks the arms, and lifts, for the HELM SPLITTER!! Link holds onto the arms and sits Volga up! LIGHT ARROW!! Cover, Link wins!!

Winner: Link, by pinfall (advances to the next round)

His first match back is his first win back! Former champion as he may be, will Link return to his former glory?


My Thoughts:

Getting this one done just in time, but it was a lot of fun. I feel bad for Ralph, but Kevin couldn’t lose after that big win over Alex at HyruleMania. And of course Harlequin was going to win his first match after the Faces of Evil made their debut, so now each bracket has one FOE in through to the second round. I really like where the uWo is heading with this new form of Alex. He’s no longer a Gibdo because his bandages are gone, I can’t wait for the reveal in that Trios gauntlet. And Fin and Link both winning, we’re going to get a great showdown from them. Link is definitely going to have the crisis of confidence trope underlying his matches as the difficulty level goes up every round.


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