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Tuesday, April 8, 2014

R.I.P Jason McCash

I’m supposed to be writing some kind of memorial for my fallen friend Jason McCash who tragically passed away this past Saturday night (April 5th). But I haven’t been able to yet. Like so many others, I’m still grieving and trying to make sense of this untimely event. As a member of the doom metal band the Gates of Slumber from my hometown of Indianapolis, Jason has well over a thousand friends and fans currently feeling this great loss with me. I have so much more to share, but it will have to wait for a bit.

Saturday, April 5, 2014

My Personality Type: The Groundbreaking Thinker

My Personality Type: The Groundbreaking Thinker

The Groundbreaking Thinker

Groundbreaking Thinkers are charming, enthusiastic persons. They really bubble over with energy and like to take centre stage. They love variety both professionally and privately. Groundbreaking Thinkers tackle changes consistently with their optimism and firm belief in their own abilities; they are always on the look-out for improvement possibilities.
Their excellent communication skills are of great advantage to them here. They approach the world with curiosity and openness and master new situations with a great deal of talent for improvising and with resourcefulness. Their spare time is taken up with a large number of hobbies; most Groundbreaking Thinkers like to travel in order to gather as many different impressions as possible. This personality type is unbeatable at discovering new possibilities.

In their work, Groundbreaking Thinkers highly rate challenges and diversified tasks. They cannot stand routine and too detailed work. They love to astound others with bold ideas for an original, new project and then leave it up to the others to implement them. Hierarchies, rules and regulations arouse their opposition and they love outsmarting the system. It is vital to them that they enjoy their work; if this is the case, they quickly become pure workaholics. Their creativity best takes effect when they work independently; but they are very good at motivating others and infecting them with their optimistic nature. Conceptual or advisory activities appeal especially to Groundbreaking Thinkers. It can happen that some people feel somewhat duped by their flexible, spontaneous nature.

Their sociability and enterprise ensure that Groundbreaking Thinkers always have a large circle of friends and acquaintances in which activity plays an important role. As they are mostly in a good mood, they are popular and very welcome guests. Grumbling and peevishness are unknown to them. However, they do tend to be a little erratic and unstable when it comes to obligations and this makes them appear to be unreliable to some. Groundbreaking Thinkers are very critical and demanding when it comes to picking a partner because they look for the ideal relationship and have a very concrete picture of this ideal relationship. Mutual aims in life are very important to them. They do not like compromising and would rather remain alone. For the partner, it is often a challenge to have a long-term relationship with a Groundbreaking Thinker. Groundbreaking Thinkers need a lot of space and diversity or otherwise they become bored and feel cramped. Types who are rather more traditionalistic often have problems with the willingness of Groundbreaking Thinkers to take risks and their often crazy, spontaneous actions. However, if one can summon up sufficient flexibility and tolerance for them, one will never be bored in their presence and will always have a loyal and faithful partner.

Adjectives that describe your type
extroverted, theoretical, logical, spontaneous, rational, innovative, intellectual, open, independent, curious, enterprising, analytical, clever, enthusiastic, venturesome, inventive, energetic, sociable, optimistic, non-conformist, creative, freedom-loving, charming, able to get enthusiastic, self-confident, communicative, capricious, inconsistent, outgoing

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

LINKAGE: Daniel Kaye: Update on my novel - I, Vladimir

Daniel Kaye: Update on my novel - I, Vladimir: Hi all, I’d like to thank you all for being so patient and for having such interest in my vampire novel, I Vladimir . So many of my...

Friday, December 6, 2013

As the Storm Abates – The Lament of WildStorm | PBX From the Podium

It has come to my attention that the WildStorm Universe may have finally met what is arguably its timely demise with the forthcoming and quietly announced cancellation of Stormwatch in early 2014. The breadth of WildStorm’s contribution to the industry couldn’t hope to be covered in one little 1200-word article, but I’ll try to do it some justice here. This, my friends, is a eulogy in the wake of WildStorm’s apparent demise.

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Defending Robert Kirkman and Other Stories - ENR | eXPress News & Reviews by

Thanks to asinine comments made by George Romero, I am forced to defend Robert Kirkman and his The Walking Dead comic and AMC's television adaptation of it. Other topics include Valiant Entertainment looking to block Kirkman's titling of his upcoming new comic book series, plus Marvel Studios, Infinite Daredevil in 2014 and some historic DC Comics news.
Defending Robert Kirkman and Other Stories | Professor’s Blackboard -  ENR | eXPress News & Reviews by

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

LINKAGE: Liquid Imagination #18 is Live

For nearly four years I have been proudly associated with a unique little webzine called Liquid Imagination. The latest issue, #18 just recently went live. 

It's the first issue since #5 (Jan 2010) to not have my input in regards to content. This is bittersweet. 2013's been a doozy of a year and I recently made the agonizing decision to relinquish my position as Flash Fiction Editor to the incoming Christa Angelios who has assumed the editorial duties for the flash fiction section. 

I didn't always edit flash fiction, though. I started out as the Music Coordinator, producing original musical for the zine for issues #5-7, which truly gave us our uniqueness, before I moved onto editing flash fiction, an art form I've been obsessed with since the late 1990s. I'd also do an interview here, an article there. But for me flash fiction (my preferred criteria: stories of 800 words or less) was where it was at for me. It was never an easy job selecting the best, and I've always said the worst part of being an editor, especially when you're a writer yourself, is rejecting submissions and relaying that bad news to another author. 

I'm confident Christa will do a fine job in her new role, but most importantly, Publisher, Designer & Managing Editor Sue "MVP" Babcock had the faith in enlisting Ms. Angelios when she knew I needed a break. Liquid Imagination is still a class publication, which is also lovingly produced by Fiction Editor Kevin Wallis, Poetry Editor Chrissy Davis and Voice Narrator Robert C. Eccles. With Mrs. Babcock's leadership and our individual visions over the last couple of years, LI has managed to carve quite a niche for itself as an online publisher of poetry, speculative, literary and flash fiction, as evident by the ever-increasing slush pile we'd amass every reading period.

So, make sure you check out LI, which updates on a quarterly basis in August, November, February and May.

Friday, August 30, 2013

BOOK: Love and Rockets - The Covers (Fantagraphics)

For the love of quality comics, this (as with pretty much any Love and Rockets book) is an obvious must-have!

LINKAGE: Saga 10 Years From Now @ Bleeding Cool

tumblr_ma1sa3w31x1rpwufmo1_5001Why We Are Going To Be Even More Obsessed With Saga Ten Years From Now by Hannah Means-Shannon.

Hannah Means-Shannon is the Senior New York Correspondent for Bleeding Cool. She writes blogs about comics for Trip City and Follow her on Twitter @hannahmenzies.

VIDEO: Robert Kirkman on the Set of Season 4: The Walking Dead

Thursday, August 29, 2013

NEW MUSIC + VIDEOS: Carcass Brings Polished "Surgical Steel"

File:CarcassSurgicalSteel.pngIt's a good thing I don't have a whole lot of time prior to making this post because otherwise I would be gushing incoherently, going on and on about how historical and momentous it is that after 17 years those boys from Liverpool, England's Carcass are finally releasing a new album on September 17th in the States. The legendary progressive metal band reunited for festivals and some touring about five years ago, and there was always the hope for a new album. That finally got officially announced this past spring and was properly teased earlier this summer (see the teaser below).

Guitarist/growler Bill Steer is a guitar god of mine and bassist/vocalist Jeff Walker is legendary in his own right. Since original drummer Ken Owen suffered a stroke a decade or so ago, and second guitarist Michael Amott is too busy with his other two bands, Spiritual Beggars and Arch Enemy, the remaining original members are joined by some new blood: drummer Dan Wilding and touring guitarist Ben Ash.

Long-time fans like myself will be happy to know that Surgical Steel reportedly sounds like the lost relic that could fit nicely between their third and fourth albums, Necroticism: Descanting the Insalubrious (1991) and Heartwork (1993), and some say between Heartwork and Swansong. Judging by what I've heard so far, I'm happy with either. Early reviews also say that the advance single, "Captive Bolt Pistol" (video below) is easily the least accomplished song on the album. That is very good news.

Check it out.

SHOUT-OUT: Formative Years Roll Call!

Back in 1989 when dinosaurs roamed, 24 years ago this month I formed my first band, a little garage band called Metatrosity (with the C converted to an S for a better looking logo). That little metal band somehow created a 6-degrees of separation kind of family tree that included so many other local Indianapolis, IN bands throughout the 90s and even into the 2000s when a lot of us really started making noise. With such an early start I managed to play in four of those bands before adulthood/fatherhood. Today, we're all a bunch of old men now, but, hey, those are our roots. So for no other reason than that I want to, I’m sending a shout-out to a bunch ex-bandmates from back in the day:

Christophe Holmes, Pete Gossett, Tony Reitz, Chris Robinson, Jason Fredriksz, Michael Downton, Tom Roosa, Jon-Michael Gioe, Dave Lawson, Scott Manning, Tevlin Schuetz, Lyman Medeiros, Joshua Maloney, Nathan Striedinger, Jason McCash, Karl Simon, Charles R Brown, Paul Fox and honorable mention to Ross Ebert who was one o' my neighborhood homies from back in the day (I'm talkin' Cub Scouts, son!). He damn-near became a bandmate too.

Oh, and long live Drop Dead!


One of two highly anticipated new albums for me in 2013 is Kiss Land by The Weeknd (Canadian-born Abel Tesfaye and his array of producers). Coming off the success of 2012's triple-disc feature Trilogy (and the 2011 "mixtape" albums that it compiles) along with a break-out world tour, September 10th will bring the dark-themed r&b soul singer's first "proper" release to worldwide fans (raising my hand) starving for more of his seedy tales set to sex-inspired chill-out beats (a la trip-hop and hip-hop), seductive basslines, and haunting melodies -- all drenched in smoke, sweat and sin. Aww yeah! It's The Weeknd, baby, and we ain't leaving the bedroom until . . . oops, sorry, I got a little ahead of myself there. Although, from what I've read in the press, I'm getting the sense that this new album will be somewhat of a departure, though still very much carrying that Toronto-inflected sound that gave the artist his original platform. We shall see.

Recently Tesfaye told Complex that "The only thing R&B about my [music] is the style of singing. My inspiration is R. Kelly, Michael Jackson, and Prince, for the vocals anyway. My production and songwriting, and the environment around those vocals are not inspired by R&B at all."

Also, that he "wrote a letter to the producers of Portishead and let them know this album [Kiss Land] inspired by them."

Personally I can only hope the new disc is a sizzler like previous The Weeknd releases. I had bumped that Trilogy CD set (which consolidated the House of Balloons, Thursday and Echoes of Silence -- the first three digital mixtape albums + 3 all-new bonus tracks into one convenient physical package) in my car all this past fall and winter long. It kept me warm. Regardless, it's good to know that Kiss Land, which Tesfaye has said is yet another concept album, will keep me warm this coming fall and winter.

Advance singles have already been released. Here's the video for "Belong to the World".