Nov
24
2014
0

Middle-earth Monday 59: Dale

dale fonstad map
Welcome back to everyone’s favorite www.isleyunruh.com Monday feature! Middle-earth being the land of enchantment and wonder that it is, each month I will use my love of fictional cartography to transport you to another time and place. So, why not take a moment to fill your head full of knowledge that will have no bearing at all on the real world?

This month I discuss a town doomed twice to be reduced to rubble: (more…)

Nov
17
2014
1

Minor Key Monday 59: Kavinsky – Nightcall


I always have to stop myself when I say I like “all kinds of music”.  Because, honestly, that just isn’t true, there is really only one kind of music I like.  No, not [just] Black Metal, I’m talking about music in a minor key.  I mean, I’m a pretty happy guy, but there is something about sad, sad songs that just does it for me.  I don’t dislike Vivaldi’s “Spring” and “Fall”, but I far prefer “Summer” and “Winter” (guess which seasons he writes in a minor key).  “Satisfaction” is a fine song, but I’d rather listen to “Paint it Black” any day…you get the idea.  Basically, it don’t mean a thing if it ain’t got that sting [of soul crushing sorrow and sadness].

This month on Minor Key Monday I discuss a synthpop song that is only marginally more complex than one of Von’s one riff masterpieces: (more…)

Written by Isley Unruh in: Minor Key Monday,Monthly Mondays |
Nov
15
2014
1

Mid-month Metal Masterpiece 59: Kampfar – Mellom Skogkledde Aaser (1997)

 

Mellom Skogkledde Aaser

Kampfar is one of those second wave Norwegian black metal bands that I thought I was totally over. The kind of stuff that I listen to and think “yeah, this kind of sounds like Immortal, or whatever second wave mainstay they are trying to sound like, not bad, but nothing I care to listen to.” But then I randomly ended up listening to one of their albums and realized that there was something to Kampfar’s music that could make even a jaded long-time black metal fan like me sit up and take notice. (more…)

Written by Isley Unruh in: Black Metal,Mid-Month Metal Masterpiece,Music |
Nov
10
2014
1

My Favorite Movies 59: Born Yesterday (George Cukor, 1950)

Judy Holliday - Born Yesterday

George Cukor was always known as a “woman’s” director.  I was never quite sure whether he was called that just because he directed The Women, because he chose screenplays that attempted to address issues of gender in a more forward thinking manner than his contemporaries, or because his homosexuality was all but out of the closet in a time when such a sexual orientation would definitely keep him from being a “man’s director.” Either way, Born Yesterday is undoubtedly a “woman’s film”–in the sense that it is entirely about a woman learning to own her shit. (more…)

Nov
03
2014
2

Mailbag Monday 66


Want to have your pressing questions answered by Isley Unruh himself? Send all queries HERE, and I will get to them as soon as I can on a future Mailbag Monday!

Welcome back to Mailbag Monday!  On the first Monday of every month, I take the time from my busy blogging schedule to answer all of my reader’s most pressing questions! Sure, I might have begged, bribed and cajoled my readers into sending me these questions in the first place, but, that still totally counts as reader mail!

This month I answer the following questions:

  • “Have you seen these shirts? http://www.cinemetaltshirts.com/
    -Zachary
  • “What would Sauron’s choice of a smart phone be, and why is it an iPhone?”
    -Duncan

So, without further ado, it is time to dig into the old Mailbag to see what kind of things have been on my readers’ minds in the last month! (more…)

Written by Isley Unruh in: Humor,Mailbag Monday,Monthly Mondays |
Nov
01
2014
0

Monthly Movie Reviews – October, 2014

Here are some two sentence reviews of the movies I watched in October.

Stats

(more…)

Written by Isley Unruh in: Cinema,Monthly Movie Reviews |
Oct
27
2014
0

Middle-earth Monday 58: Far Harad

map of Eastern ME second Age

Welcome back to everyone’s favorite www.isleyunruh.com Monday feature! Middle-earth being the land of enchantment and wonder that it is, each month I will use my love of fictional cartography to transport you to another time and place. So, why not take a moment to fill your head full of knowledge that will have no bearing at all on the real world?

This month I discuss sub-equatorial Arda, where the stars are strange: (more…)

Oct
20
2014
1

Minor Key Monday 58: R.E.O. Speedwagon – Ridin’ the Storm Out


I always have to stop myself when I say I like “all kinds of music”.  Because, honestly, that just isn’t true, there is really only one kind of music I like.  No, not [just] Black Metal, I’m talking about music in a minor key.  I mean, I’m a pretty happy guy, but there is something about sad, sad songs that just does it for me.  I don’t dislike Vivaldi’s “Spring” and “Fall”, but I far prefer “Summer” and “Winter” (guess which seasons he writes in a minor key).  “Satisfaction” is a fine song, but I’d rather listen to “Paint it Black” any day…you get the idea.  Basically, it don’t mean a thing if it ain’t got that sting [of soul crushing sorrow and sadness].

This month on Minor Key Monday I discuss one of those classic rock songs I love, but can never remember the name of: (more…)

Written by Isley Unruh in: Minor Key Monday,Monthly Mondays,Music |
Oct
15
2014
1

Mid-month Metal Masterpiece 58: W.A.S.P. – W.A.S.P. (1984)

W.A.S.P. self titled original cover

Any metalhead worth their salt will tell you that Glam music is SO NOT METAL. However, no metalhead worth their salt would ever suggest that W.A.S.P. should “leave the hall,” despite W.A.S.P.’s sketchy generic classification which usually lists them as a “hard rock” influenced metal band–at best. Still, no amount of make-up and album cover duckfacing is going to keep me from appreciating one of the greatest bands of all time, not matter what the purity of their metal may or may not be. (more…)

Written by Isley Unruh in: Mid-Month Metal Masterpiece,Music |
Oct
13
2014
0

My Favorite Movies 58: Dr. Strangelove (Stanley Kubrick, 1964)

Dr Strangelove bomb ride

Comedy is always best when played straight.  I mean, don’t get me wrong, I’m not, by any means, casting aspersions Caddyshack‘s way, I’m just saying that a deadpan delivery can pay more dividends than loudly farting while wearing plaid pants.  Ok, fine, at least it can pay equal dividends. Dr. Strangelove, while it isn’t without its silly bits, is well aware that playing it straight can be the best way to play it, especially when making light of the end of all life as we know it. (more…)

Oct
06
2014
6

Mailbag Monday 65


Want to have your pressing questions answered by Isley Unruh himself? Send all queries HERE, and I will get to them as soon as I can on a future Mailbag Monday!

Welcome back to Mailbag Monday!  On the first Monday of every month, I take the time from my busy blogging schedule to answer all of my reader’s most pressing questions! Sure, I might have begged, bribed and cajoled my readers into sending me these questions in the first place, but, that still totally counts as reader mail!
This month I answer the following questions:

  • “It seems like most of your bands use a lot of upside down crosses and pentagrams.  Do the band members actually worship Satan?”
    -Laura
  • “Can you list some different butt wiping techniques?”
    -Chaddyboy

So, without further ado, it is time to dig into the old Mailbag to see what kind of things have been on my readers’ minds in the last month! (more…)

Written by Isley Unruh in: Bathroom Humor,Humor,Mailbag Monday,Monthly Mondays |
Oct
01
2014
0

Monthly Movie Reviews – September, 2014

Here are some two sentence reviews of the movies I watched in September.

Stats

(more…)

Written by Isley Unruh in: Cinema,Monthly Movie Reviews |
Sep
29
2014
6

IO5M 9: The Top Five Signs That the Underground Metal Band You Are Listening To Might Be Racist

Нежеголь (Nezhegol) - Украина

Welcome back to my most infrequently occurring Monday feature!  I’m speaking, of course, of Infrequently Occurring Fifth Monday (IO5M), where I come up with a new “top 5″ list on a quad-yearly basis.

I can sometimes sail some dark waters in my quest for new, shitty-sounding underground metal.  And it’s not a secret that some of the bands that swim in those dark waters can paddle pretty far to the right.  However, unlike the metal underground’s clear and unambiguous love for our Dark Lord and Master Satan™, many of these racist bands keep their affair with Hitler just a bit under the radar.  Maybe it’s just so they can still sell their albums in Germany, or maybe it’s because they are trying to sneak a bit of stealth racism through to unsuspecting metalhead consumers, but, whatever the reason, it can sometimes be tricky to figure out if that new band Pagan Blood Hammer that you just discovered might also happen to be a wee bit racist.

So, today, I’ve put together a helpful list of the top five signs that the underground metal band to which you are listening might be a little racist.  I’m not talking about bands that wear their racism openly in their horrible band names and song titles on albums peppered with swastikas and poorly photoshopped collages of Nazi troops marching through mass graves.  Instead I’m trying to focus on those bands that try to disguise their more troublesome ideological leanings from the unsuspecting layman.  None of the items on today’s top five list are iron-clad signs of a band’s racism, but in a metal underground that knows full well the value and power of symbols, I’d say that a band that adopts any of the items on this list in their imagery might at least have some problematic views on immigration. (more…)

Sep
22
2014
2

Middle-earth Monday 57: The Endless Stair, and Durin’s Tower

durin's tower map fonstead
Welcome back to everyone’s favorite www.isleyunruh.com Monday feature! Middle-earth being the land of enchantment and wonder that it is, each month I will use my love of fictional cartography to transport you to another time and place. So, why not take a moment to fill your head full of knowledge that will have no bearing at all on the real world?

This month I discuss the highest tower in Arda (post-breaking of Thangorodrim, of course): (more…)

Sep
15
2014
0

Minor Key Monday 57: Timbaland – The Way I Are

I always have to stop myself when I say I like “all kinds of music”.  Because, honestly, that just isn’t true, there is really only one kind of music I like.  No, not [just] Black Metal, I’m talking about music in a minor key.  I mean, I’m a pretty happy guy, but there is something about sad, sad songs that just does it for me.  I don’t dislike Vivaldi’s “Spring” and “Fall”, but I far prefer “Summer” and “Winter” (guess which seasons he writes in a minor key).  “Satisfaction” is a fine song, but I’d rather listen to “Paint it Black” any day…you get the idea.  Basically, it don’t mean a thing if it ain’t got that sting [of soul crushing sorrow and sadness].

This month on Minor Key Monday I discuss a song that was apparently even too embarrassing for a peripheral character from the Step Up franchise to like: (more…)

Written by Isley Unruh in: Minor Key Monday,Monthly Mondays,Music |
Sep
15
2014
2

Mid-month Metal Masterpiece 57: Blasphemy – Blood upon the Altar (1989)

Blasphemy Blood upon the Altar original

1989 was a pretty brutal year for extreme metal.  Grindcore and death metal had finally used the knowledge culled from a decade of metal malevolence to produce some of the filthiest recordings in the history of music. However, none were quite as filthy, quite as brutal, and quite jaw-droppingly evil as Blasphemy’s debut demo Blood upon the Altar. (more…)

Written by Isley Unruh in: Black Metal,Mid-Month Metal Masterpiece,Music |
Sep
08
2014
0

My Favorite Movies 57: It Happened One Night (Frank Capra, 1934)

It happened one night moonlit haystack

People watch romantic comedies for one main reason: to experience the vicarious thrill of seeing a Hollywood fantasy version of love that can never (or, perhaps, rarely) be found in real life.  In a romantic comedy, nothing truly horrible ever happens, soul mates always find each other, and true love always triumphs over everything the usual third act misunderstanding can throw at it.  It Happened One Night is the granddaddy of all romantic comedies, and, for my money, it is also still the best one. (more…)

Sep
01
2014
3

Mailbag Monday 64


Want to have your pressing questions answered by Isley Unruh himself? Send all queries HERE, and I will get to them as soon as I can on a future Mailbag Monday!

Welcome back to Mailbag Monday!  On the first Monday of every month, I take the time from my busy blogging schedule to answer all of my reader’s most pressing questions! Sure, I might have begged, bribed and cajoled my readers into sending me these questions in the first place, but, that still totally counts as reader mail!
This month I answer the following questions:

  • “How can someone determine if Isley has had too much to drink?”
    -Rebecca
  • “How’s your game life going?”
    -Pandora

So, without further ado, it is time to dig into the old Mailbag to see what kind of things have been on my readers’ minds in the last month! (more…)

Written by Isley Unruh in: Humor,Mailbag Monday,Monthly Mondays |
Sep
01
2014
0

Monthly Movie Reviews – August, 2014

Here are some two sentence reviews of the movies I watched in August.

Stats

  • Movies watched – 7
  • Movies that were new to me – 3
  • Percent fewer movies than last month – 71%
  • Monthly Masterpieces – CasablancaBoyhood

  (more…)

Written by Isley Unruh in: Cinema,Monthly Movie Reviews |
Aug
25
2014
1

Middle-earth Monday 56: The Glittering Caves

glittering caves map

Welcome back to everyone’s favorite www.isleyunruh.com Monday feature! Middle-earth being the land of enchantment and wonder that it is, each month I will use my love of fictional cartography to transport you to another time and place. So, why not take a moment to fill your head full of knowledge that will have no bearing at all on the real world?

This month I discuss the most spectacularly beautiful cave system in Middle-earth: (more…)

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