Welcome, to the dive...

The mundane The profane The un-sane
© stonerphonic 2008 - 2010

If "pure, unadulterated bullshit on a stick" had a blog page,
then it would probably look something like [this]. (Actual quote, stonerphonic's mother)

Sunday, 20 June 2010

HEROES - Part 4: Jello Biafra

Thinking for myself...

I'll never forget 1994. Big changes happened to me then. I moved out of Queensland to go live in the Northern Territory in November 94. 1994 was the last time i had any interest in "non-exotic" women (read into that what you will). In 1994 I totally de-shitted myself of all the things that held me back from reaching my full potential & stopped me from embracing the me I wanted to be.

And in 1994 I actually got to meet one of my heroes face to face.


As far as music goes, 1977-1979 opened a whole new canvas for musical expression. Hell, for self expression. Because that's when punk spat itself clean into the public eye. And whilst I fully appreciate the cleverly crafted UK scene courtesy of Malcolm McLaren and Vivienne Westwood, the Sex Pistols can kiss my ass. In fact the Pistols are eloquently summed up in the title of one of their songs - Pretty Vacant.

For me, real punk has never (my never) been expressed as fully and complete as it was in a group of San Francisco Baysiders who embodied the real ethos of punk in every nerve and fibre of the body of their work.... the Dead Kennedys. From their name to their sound and more importantly the content and focus of their lyrical output, these guys were real 'punk'. Every album cover, every song title, every information inclusion was deliberate, directed, and damn well made you think.  And that was the whole point. In fact if I had to choose a song or a lyric to truly represent what Dead Kennedys means to me, it would have to be the 1st line from 'Nazi Punks Fuck Off' – "Punk ain't no religious cult, punk means thinking for yourself” *(1)

Encapsulated in that single line is for me the true spirit of intelligence and forward endeavor – think for yourself. And I've carried that with me around the world, and it's gotten me in and out of trouble for sure, but by the same token it's kept me honest and true to who I am. And in 1994 at a little university lecture theatre I finally got the opportunity to meet someone who made me think. Really made me think. And question too...

By 1994 Jello Biafra had already left behind a deluge of controversy and carnage from the Dead Kennedys era, and the obscenity trial that brought about the group's demise. He was now fronting and guesting for a number of different bands, collaborating with some of the best industrial musos in the business, as well as carving out a niche on the spoken word circuit, which was the reason for his one and only Brisbane performance. It was like a dream come true. I finally found myself in the front row, dead smack in the middle, and out leaped Jello straight into his famous “Marshall Law” monologue, the one used by Ice-T on the 'Home Invasion' album. And for the next 2 ½ hours he enthralled us all with his unique style of 'edutainment' delivered with his instantly recognizable nasally high pitched vocal style. The delivery was faultless, peppered with rhetorical questions and thought provoking suggestion. Damn, it was almost perfect, marred only by some dumb-ass goth metal wannabe chick 5 seats up from me who passed out and hit the floor face first. Too much speed? Not enuff speed....

Best bit of it all was question time at the end.  There's about 400 fully decked out punk/metal/ goth heads packed in here, about 5 media pundits, 3 4ZZZ radio kids recording it all for posterity, and me. And guess who got 1st shot at question time? Yeah baby!

So..... I asked this punk rock living legend, this famed singer, this dude who helped define a soundscape and musical template for generations to come, I asked Jello Biafra about Californian governor Pete Wilson's efforts to introduce proposition 187 into effect in California.


You could have heard a pin drop in the joint. Here was my big chance to tell Jello "oh dude you've changed my life" or "hey man, when the hell are LARD gunna tour" or "dude, will you sign my records for me", and I asked some totally fucking obscure question about an unknown American politician and an unknown American law (remember, this was in 1994, Brisbane, Australia), none of which meant anything to anyone in the audience. Chris, what a fucking fool, what WAS I thinking, what a waste of a perfect opportunity to score my 15 minutes of fame.

HA! Fuck that shit.

My seemingly obscure question made this worn and weary performer instantly pep up and launch into an extra 45 minutes of amazingly animated monologue about this particularly evil and bigoted man and his stupid proposition (go on, Google proposition 187). It reinvigorated the entire afternoon, but most important for me is I put a shine into Jello's eyes. Cause he knew I knew the deal, and the absolute best bit it was all recorded for posterity by Radio 4ZZZ. And then yes, 27 other bozo's asked those dumb old banal and pointless questions anyway. And when all was said and done, 400 drug fucked music whores converged onto the stage to have Jello sign their record, CD, shirt etc. and I just stood way back behind them all, to watch poor old Jello signing his life away frantically, all the time noting him scanning the crowd like crazy, neck outstretched, and then **POW** we caught each other square in the eye. He smiled and nodded, I returned the acknowledgement, and as he tried to make his way through the crowd of forward lurching bodies, I casually walked away.....

My biggest regret in connection with "meeting" Jello was not my 'stupid' question, or the fact that I walked away when the dude obviously wanted to come up and say hi. Rather, my biggest regret happened a few years earlier. Just so happens I'd been given as a gift 2 exceptionally rare pieces of vinyl. They were transparent copies of the Dead Kennedy's 'In God We Trust Incorporated' and 'Plastic Surgery Disasters', both pressed in Italy. I also have in my possession (to this very day) a copy of an interview with Jello in some el-cheapo music magazine from the 90's. And in amongst all the questions thrown at him was 'if you could have any piece of memorabilia from the Dead Kennedy's days, what would it be?' And you know what he answered? Yep, the very 2 pieces of vinyl I had sitting in milk crates in a cupboard at my parents house.

Had being the operable word...

Cause during a huge cleanup one day at my folks place, they just happened to find themselves in the bottom of a box that went to the dump. I so would have loved to have been able to walk up to Jello on that day in 1994 and say thank you to him for all he's done for me as far as inspiration goes over the years, and then to hand those pieces of vinyl over, to be able to actually give back to someone who has given so much throughout his life. I'm sure there's an old saying that goes 'there's more happiness in giving than in receiving'.

But even if I couldn't thank him in the way I wanted to, for a brief moment in 1994 I got to connect with a person who has really inspired me, and continues to inspire me to this very day.

A little while ago the remaining Dead Kennedys took Jello to court so they could sell their old songs to big business corporations and 'cash in' on the resurgence of the 'old punk spirit', something which at the basest of levels goes totally against what that 'old punk spirit' was all about in the 1st place. And of course Jello said no, and 1 great big shit fight ensued. But, regardless of the outcomes, Jello Biafra never sold out. Ever.

And THAT, my friends, is punk. Real punk.
That sort of attitude and principled belief is what truly inspires me.
Stuff the mighty dollar.
Stuff the whole 'scene'.
It's about principles.
Being right. Being true. Thinking.

And I can't think of a better way than close this piece than with the last line from 'Nazi Punks Fuck Off' -

You'll be the first to go
You'll be the first to go
You'll be the first to go
Unless you THINK... *(1)


NEXT WEEK: HEROES - Part 5 - Cat Stevens
If you're still here... thank you.

Please feel free to comment on my pieces. I willingly accept constructive criticism and comments on all my work. Hell, I'll take non-constructive criticism too. It's not life or death stuff y'know...

I believe in respect. I'm not asking you to agree with anything in this piece, but please allow me to have my opinion. Remember, I openly admit I don't read other peoples stuff. Hey, you don't have to read mine, and I'm happy to let you write yours.

Did i push your buttons? If I did, then share this shit with your friends.
Go on, hit that forward button...

All the words & mindless ramblings in BORDERLINE (c) 2008 - 2010 stonerphonic unless otherwise stated.
Find my punk ass - http://www.facebook.com/stonerphonic
Write my punk ass - stonerphonic@hotmail.com


Saturday, 19 June 2010

FILM REVIEW - Vindication (2006)

Some things you just kinda know instinctively.

You don't put your hand into an open fire.
You don't chew on broken shards of glass.
Unless you're Steve Irwin, you just don't jump on crocodiles.
And when Clive Barker says that an indie horror film rocks, there's a fair indication it's gunna...

Vindication writer, director and producer Bart Mastronardi is part of the US East Coast low-budget  independent horror film community that cranks out horror based genre features and shorts on a regular basis. Vindication, Mastronardi's first film as a writer/ director, is an independent, low-budget blood & horror fest with Clive Barker's very own seal of approval no less...


Vindication is your classic tale of morality, but with a lot more to it than meets the eye. It brings out and deals with the raw emotions of loss, of guilt, of failure, and their terrifying effects on one individual's life. It showcases the nightmarish results of attempted suicide, and the far reaching impact this has, on the individual, his family, and his friends.The story bursts forth on to the screen through a running stream-of-consciousness process, and takes the viewer through a series of brilliantly crafted visual scapes following Nicholas Betram (Keith Fraser) as he plunges us down the frightening spiral of a life "gone wrong", and an all consuming choice that ultimately costs him everything.

Vindication has a great cast and crew under Mastronadi's direction, and there's no end of talent on show through the production, in front and behind the camera. Henry Borriello provides the film's special FX and brings the horror of Nicholas' nightmares right to the fore of the films strong points. Mastronadi has employed the assistance of Dominick Sivilli with Vindication's production, and there is no shortage of strong visual representations and effects deployed by Sivilli throughout the film. Although some of the handheld camera work detracted from a portion of the viewing experience for myself personally, it was certainly made up for with some incredible montages and transformations that showcased Sivilli's ability to bring Mastronadi's story into the visual arena with the expertise it deserves.

I had the pleasure once again to enjoy the masterful audio experience that Tom Burns from Really Horrible Music brings to the screen. Burns worked on Jeremiah Kipp's CONTACT, and I truly felt that the sound scape Burns supplied for CONTACT proved to be one of the main highlights of the film. Burns has achieved a similar effect with Vindication, and there are some truly chilling moments where the audio work really intensifies the scene, and leaves an impressionable and lasting effect on the viewer.

Vindication's acting cast had quite a challenge ahead to get through the project, as the film took some time to complete, but their efforts and dedication certainly paid off. The cast received three major acting awards: Alan Rowe Kelly, Zoe Daelman Chlanda and Jerry Murdock, all for Best Supporting at the Dark Carnival Film Festival. The movie also won Best Picture and Director’s Choice at Dark Carnival and Texas Blood Bath.


Nicholas Bertram isn't coping. With life. With himself. He lost his mother to suicide, his father has disowned him and treats Nicholas like shit, and he doesn't have enough money to cover his rent.  But he has even worse problems.  Along with self mutilation, leading to attempted suicide, Nicholas begins to lose his mind. Visions. Nightmares. Hallucinations. All of them featuring a demonic persona called Kon'Shens. This personal demon encourages Nicholas to let go of his built up guilt through brutal and violent ways.  Nicholas, now enslaved by his guilt and his regrets, turns them into an all consuming rampage as he exacts revenge on all within reach... 


Vindication is a tale about guilt, about conscience, and shows the terrible outcomes of an individual stricken with guilt. It also tells of the sad result of an individuals attempted suicide as a solution to all of life's problems, all through an effort of self vindication.

There's an enormous amount of bloodshed and carnage towards the end of the film, but there's more to this tale of horror than just the gore and special FX. There are myriads of complex issues addressed through the film's 76 minute run time, and I found myself questioning thoughts of conscience, action, reaction, and other introspective feelings as I watched Keith Fraser take his characterisation of Nicholas through this sad tale of guilt and regret.

Too, I found a great deal of fantastic talent on display, including Jerry Murdock as Nicholas' father William Bertram. I have read other reviews where Murdock's portrayal received a rather negative interpretation, but I totally enjoyed his characterisation. Within 30 seconds of screen time, I instantly disliked William Bertram, hated him, and to me that's what good acting is about. Make me feel something, anything, towards the character. And Murdock fully achieved this for me. I wanted his character dead!!!

There's also a sweet cameo by Alan Rowe Kelly as fortune teller Urbane. Absolute screen magic!

On the negative side, a Panasonic DVX100B mini-DV had been employed for filming, which for me made the movie's "feel" come across at times more like a "Made for T.V." movie than the "Hollywood" feel Savilli achieved with CONTACT. I would have preferred something along the lines of what newbie filmmaker Bradley Scott Sullivan achieved with "I Didn't Come Here to Die", which was shot on the Panasonic Lumix GH1 DSLR. Whatever processing was used on "I Didn't Come Here to Die" has given the low-budget film an amazing "feel" which almost made it look like it had been made in the 1970's on 35mm celluloid.

A great story, lots of gore, and for those who like their horror with some deep messages that take some thought process involvement, then you might just find it in Mastronardi's Vindication.



Directed by Bart Mastronardi
Produced by Bart Mastronardi
Written by Bart Mastronardi
Starring Keith Frasier, Alan Rowe Kelly, Zoe Daelman Chlanda and Jerry Murdock
Music by William Archiello
Cinematography Bart Mastronardi
Editing by Stolis Hadjicharalambous
Distributed by Mastropiece Productions


Written review and animated movie GIFs by stonerphonic © June 2010
All rights reserved

Sunday, 13 June 2010

HEROES - Part 3: Rizal

Dr. José Protasio Rizal Mercado y Alonso Realonda (June 19, 1861 – December 30, 1896)

Most people in Western countries have never of this inspiring young Asian man. And it's such a crime. If you ever get a chance to read a biographical book on Rizal I promise you it's worth every minute you invest.

Rizal lived during the Spanish occupation of the Philippines. They stole his language, his beliefs, his culture, and when he came to an appreciation of this he channeled his love of his people and culture through writing to bring back to oppressed Filipinos their sense of dignity and self worth. Rizal never lived to see the complete realization of his dream to restore his people's dignity, which is so damn terrible in itself, but if nothing more it really should make all Filipinos so damn proud of their national hero.

Rizal was a Filipino polymath, a nationalist, and the most prominent advocate for reforms in the Philippines during the Spanish colonial era. He is considered the Philippine's national hero and the anniversary of Rizal's death is commemorated as a Philippine holiday called Rizal day. His 1896 military trial and execution basically made him a martyr of the Philippine revolution.

Rizal was a polyglot conversant in at least ten languages. Like, totally awesome dude. He was a prolific poet, essayist, diarist, correspondent, and novelist whose most famous works were his two novels, "Noli me Tangere" and "El Filibusterismo". These are social commentaries on the Philippines that formed the nucleus of literature that inspired dissent among peaceful reformists and spurred the militancy of armed revolutionaries against 333 years of Spanish rule.

If you ever get a chance to read these books, do it. I try not to recommend stuff to others, but both these books are full on inspiring stuff. When they came out, these writings angered both the Spanish and the Hispanic Filipinos due to their hardcore "insulting" symbolism. Both novellas are highly critical of Spanish religious leaders and the atrocities committed in the name of religion. And most importantly, both books centre on liberal and progressive ideas of individual rights and freedom, specifically, the rights for the common Filipino population.

So, why the hell do I, an urbanized white Australian male have any interest whatsoever in Rizal. Ummmm, coz he rocked!!! Dude challenged the ruling and religious authority of his time, not because he was some bad-ass rebel and hated politics and religion, but because these systems were wrong and committing atrocities to Rizal and the country he loved, and ultimately died for...

He hated the injustice, the corruption, the lies. Cool. If i see stuff going down that stinks of injustice, say, like the West Memphis 3, I can't ignore that. Hell, nobody should ignore that. To do so would be so untrue, to myself and to you. And, to top shit off, Rizal even has his head on 1 of the most widely circulated coins on earth. How cool is that?

As a political figure, Rizal was the founder of "La Liga Filipina", a civic organization that subsequently gave birth to the "Katipunan" led by Andres Bonifacio and Emilio Aguinaldo. Rizal was a proponent of institutional reforms by peaceful means rather than by violent revolution (keep that thought in mind kiddies, you'll need to remember that for a later piece). His martyred death was the catalyst that precipitated the Philippine revolution. Rizal's advocacy of institutional reforms by peaceful means rather than by violent revolution makes him Asia's first modern non-violent proponent of political reforms. As such, this makes Rizal really a forerunner of Gandhi and contemporary of Tagore and Sun Yat Sen. In fact, all four basically created a new climate of thought throughout Asia, leading to the attrition of colonialism and the emergence of new Asiatic nations by the end of WW2.

Rizal was totally appreciated by Gandhi who regarded him as a forerunner in the cause of freedom. Even Jawaharlal Nehru, in his prison letters, acknowledged Rizal's significant contributions to the Asian freedom movement. So yeah, all these other 'world leaders' regarded his contributions as keystones, and acknowledged Rizal's role in the freedom movement as a foundation layer.
Rizal as a person is nothing less than genius. Honest. He was an ophthalmologist, sculptor, painter, educator, farmer, historian, playwright and journalist. And besides poetry and creative writing, he dabbled in architecture, cartography, economics, ethnology, anthropology, sociology, dramatics, martial arts, fencing and pistol shooting. Damn, there's seriously nothing this dude touched that he didn't rock at. But the coolest thing is Rizal just did stuff. He didn't back down when he knew he was right, again at the cost of his life. At the ripe old age of 35.

And the dude had real substance. He wasn't just all talk. You should check out the time he got called out for a duel. It's on Wikipedia somewhere. Every time I read about Rizal I can't help but catch a piece of his love for truth and his love for his people. For me, Rizal isn't just an epic dead hero. Rizal is just epic. Period. There's a place called Fort Santiago in the Philippines that houses a monument which stands near the place where he was executed. It was designed by Richard Kissling, the artist who did the famed William Tell sculpture. The statue carries the inscription "I want to show to those who deprive people the right to love of country, that when we know how to sacrifice ourselves for our duties and convictions, death does not matter if one dies for those one loves – for his country and for others dear to him."


Sure I don't dig the whole nationalistic slant, but I am inspired by what drove Rizal to lay it all down. No matter what. That's real courage. Real heroism.

So, I suppose the best way to end this piece is in Rizal's own words....

"He waited for a few moments to see if the depths would disgorge anything, but the waves closed anew, as mysterious as before, without adding a ripple more to the smooth surface, as if into the immensity of the sea only a tiny pebble had fallen".*(1)


NEXT WEEK: HEROES - Part 4 - Jello Biafra

If you're still here... thank you.

Please feel free to comment on my pieces. I willingly accept constructive criticism and comments on all my work. Hell, I'll take non-constructive criticism too. It's not life or death stuff y'know...

I believe in respect. I'm not asking you to agree with anything in this piece, but please allow me to have my opinion. Remember, I openly admit I don't read other peoples stuff. Hey, you don't have to read mine, and I'm happy to let you write yours.

Did i push your buttons? If I did, then share this shit with your friends.
Go on, hit that forward button...

All the words & mindless ramblings in BORDERLINE (c) 2008 - 2010 stonerphonic unless otherwise stated.
Find my punk ass - http://www.facebook.com/stonerphonic
Write my punk ass - stonerphonic@hotmail.com


* (1) Jose Rizal, "El Filibusterismo", Chapter 39, second last paragraph



I got it. FINALLY!!!

Yep, the second volume/ slice to the Argento triple pack series. Thanks to the groovy guys at DVD King, I managed to score it at a very nice price, and am now kicking back to run thru the whole twisted shebang, one flick at a time, in order of DVD appearance, and inflict it on YOU.

6 Argento horror flix.
6 Very opinionated reviews by yours truly.
And a fuckload of GIF's to make it all worth your while to actually take the 3 seconds it needs to run your peepers across the damn post. And maybe even... COMMENT!


For those who came in late -

Dario Argento (born September 7, 1940) is an Italian film director, producer and screenwriter. He is best known for his work in the horror/ slasher film genre, and has a huge output in the thriller/ giallo sub genre. Argento has had a major influence on modern horror and slasher movies throughout the last 40 years.

Most people categorize Argento's prolific cinematic output into "years" based on the categories he was working in at that time, and often in sets of 3 movies or Trilogies. Soooo, we get -

The Giallo years

Early in Argento's directing career, up until the 70's, he continued to concentrate largely on the Giallo or Thriller genre. The Italian "Giallo" usually refers to generic mystery works. Argento directed a number of very successful thrillers, such as The Cat o' Nine Tails (1971) and Four Flies on Grey Velvet (1972) which, alongside The Bird with the Crystal Plumage (1970), are frequently referred to as Argento's "animal trilogy". His best known and most referenced Giallo movie though would have to be 1975's Deep Red. Deep Red gave Argento international success, and influenced other directors to work in the Thriller genre.

The Supernatural years

Argento's "Supernatural" years kicks off with the ultra-violent thriller Suspiria (1977).Argento planned for Suspiria to be the first of a trilogy about "The Three Mothers", three ancient witches residing in three different modern cities. The second movie of the trilogy was 1980's Inferno. The Mother of Tears concludes the trilogy. After Inferno, Argento returned to the screen with the thriller Tenebrae (1982). He then went for a giallo and supernatural combination in Phenomena, also known as Creepers (1985).

Argento directed and produced scores of cinematic expression, but for the horrorheads who creep and slink across the meanderings of this blogspot, most of us are really only interested in his movies that lean towards the horror/ supernatural genre output, which pretty much looks like this -

* The Bird with the Crystal Plumage (L'uccello dalle piume di cristallo) (1970)
* The Cat o' Nine Tails (Il gatto a nove code) (1971)
* Four Flies on Grey Velvet (4 mosche di velluto grigio) (1971)
* The Five Days (Le cinque giornate) (1973)
* Door into Darkness (TV Series, Episodes Testimone oculare, Il tram) (1973)
* Deep Red (Profondo rosso) (aka The Hatchet Murders) (1975)
* Suspiria (1977)
* Inferno (1980)
* Tenebrae (aka Unsane) (1982)
* Phenomena (aka Creepers) (1985)
* Opera (aka Terror at the Opera) (1987)
* Two Evil Eyes (Due occhi diabolici) (Segment, The Black Cat) (1990)
* Trauma (1993)
* The Stendhal Syndrome (La sindrome di Stendhal) (1996)
* The Phantom of the Opera (Il fantasma dell'opera) (1998)
* Sleepless (Non ho sonno) (2001)
* The Card Player (Il cartaio) (2004)
* Do You Like Hitchcock? (Ti piace Hitchcock?) (2005)
* Masters of Horror (TV Series, Episode Jenifer) (2005)
* Masters of Horror (TV Series, Episode Pelts) (2006)
* The Mother of Tears (2007)
* Giallo (2009)

Out of this fine selection, I get to review, and inflict upon you, The Argento Classics Series on DVD -




Both DVDs were released in Australia through Umbrella Entertainment.
DVD I was released in Australia on 13 Jan 07
DVD II was released in Australia on 01 Feb 08

Each review on BORDERLINE will give a film synopsis, a breakdown of "important" stats and other technical junk, plus my own worthless and opinionated take on how the film came across to me. Oh, and I'm gunna rip a few frames and GIF them just so you don't have to put up with the same old "stolen from a Google search" image that accompany every other damn review currently out there. How can you say no to moving goddamn pictures?

So WATCH THIS SPACE buckos, coz I'm seeeeeriously hitting the TV & DVD player hard, and got my crayons and paper ready to take notes as I dig me deep into some... DARIO.


Written review & movie GIF work by stonerphonic © June 2010
All rights reserved

Friday, 4 June 2010

MUSIC REVIEW - LAZARUS A.D. - "The Onslaught" (2009)

It's more than fitting to think that the almost dead Bay Area Thrash sound should be resurrected in full force by a band called LAZARUS A.D....

Ironic almost Alanis, don't you think. Bitch?


8 Fucking seconds

Hell, less. Within a moment of catching the blistering lead notes from album opener "Last Breath" I was instantly, and totally, addicted to the sounds of Bay Area Thrash all over again. Even more so by the time I made it to the title track, tracks 5 & 6, in particular track 5 "The Onslaught Pt. 1 - Revolution". I've had that 1 track spinning now for about 5 weeks solid. And whenever I drop a LAZARUS A.D. Youtube link around the place, you guessed it, it's the link to Revolution.

THRASH OR DIE is the motto of Wisconsin based LAZARUS A.D. and after repeated spins of their 1st long player "The Onslaught", you know these boys mean that shit for real. Damn it, if these guys aren't the deserving bastard love-child of Metallica and Slayer I'll start listening to Justin Beiber. THAT'S how fuckin seriously LAZARUS A.D. and The Onslaught has impressed me.

Fast, furious, brutal, infectious, and just plain rockin the motherfuck out is the best way to describe the aural assault delivered direct to your earholes by the 10 track metal barrage.


Dan Gapen- Lead Guitar/ Vocals
Jeff Paulick- Lead Vocals/ Bass
Alex Lackner- Guitar
Ryan Shutler- Drums

LAZARUS A.D. formed in Wisconsin in the spring of 2005. While LAZARUS A.D. is a thrash metal band, their sound isn't a simple throwback to the 80s bay area sound. They breathe a breath of fresh air into modern thrash with intelligent lyrics, memorable riffs, thrash breakdowns, mid-tempo grooves, and high-flying solos.
The band began work on their first full length album in January of 2007. Recorded and engineered by Chris Djuricic (Soil, November’s Doom, Michael Angelo Batio) at Studio One, and mastered by James Murphy (Death, Testament). During this time LAZARUS A.D. was approached by Earache Records to submit a track for an upcoming metal compilation. From The Onslaught, album opener "Last Breath" was one of the 16 songs chosen to appear on Thrashing Like A Maniac, and they were the only unsigned band on the entire compilation! The Onslaught was originally released by the band in 2007 and only 1,000 copies were pressed, then, in 2008, LAZARUS A.D. received a call from Metal Blade Records. The Onslaught was then completely re-mixed and re-mastered by James Murphy and saw worldwide release through Metal Blade Records in March 2009.

Since then the band has been furiously touring and promoting "The Onslaught", and it's only a matter of time before we see what LAZARUS A.D. is truly made of. I'd say metal...



I make no secrets about my absolute love for this album. It started out perfect, and just got better and better with each track. All killer and no filler isn't even close. And that, for me, IS the mark of any great album. If i never have to hit FF or skip, you know it's on the money. Hell, I have trouble turning off album repeat on this. 

Stand out cuts for me were Last Breath, Thou Shall Not Fear, Revolution, and Absolute Power. I strongly encourage you to support these hardworking Wisconsin boys, go out NOW and buy this album, and when they're next in town, get off your lazy ass and spend a dollar to keep real metal alive.



LABEL: Metal Blade Records 
GENRE: Thrash/ Groove Metal
ALBUM: The Onslaught (2007 & 2009)


1.    Last Breath                                    
2.    Thou Shall Not Fear                     
3.    Damnation For The Weak          
4.    Every Word Unheard                     
5.    The Onslaught Pt. 1 - Revolution    
6.    The Onslaught Pt. 2 - Rebirth      
7.    Lust                                             
8.    Forged In Blood                          
9.    Absolute Power                               
10.  Who I Really Am                           


Written review by stonerphonic © June 2010
All rights reserved

FILM REVIEW - Sukiyaki Western Django (2007)

Spaghetti Western? 
Sushi Western...

That's right, you're getting Leone and Corbucci with chopsticks. And for what its worth, it's not a bad deal to "take home" at all.


Most horror junkies are aware of the influential and inspiring work of Takashi Miike, the man who brought us such films as "One Missed Call", the banned from cable TV "Imprint", the disturbing "Visitor Q" and seminal "Ichi the Killer", to name a few.

Of note though is the fact that Miike has produced and directed scores of films and television programs that fall outside of his noteworthy horror roll of honour. Regardless of your personal attachment to any specific movie genre, he still delivers on the valuable "must see" list of movies no matter what the subject. And Miike's brilliant Japanese Spaghetti Western "Sukiyaki Western Django" certainly can and should be counted on that "must see" list.


Thankfully, Miike has done the right thing and stayed true to the basic spaghetti western formula, just giving it his trademark post-modernistic Japanese ultra-violent flavor. 1 innocent township with a fist full of treasure, 2 rival gangs fighting over said township for said treasure, 1 lone gun-for-hire maverick caught in between the 2 gangs, and 1 legend pertaining to a mysterious gunslinger from days gone by who you just know will blow in to save the day by the end of the 121 minutes of screen time.

Miike has used the historical rivalry between the Japanese Heike and Genji clans during the samurai era as the background for the story, only difference is that its set in Nevada. The film is scattered with references to the ancient samurai Genpei War clan rivalry, as well as the War of the Roses, and multiple spaghetti western references from the films Yojimbo and Django. It's a great ride throughout, and whilst it is ultra-violent per se, it's still a hell of a story, and a whole heap of fun.


It has a myriad of classic western movie themes running as an undercurrent, and deals with love, loss, betrayal, all draped with beautifully colored cinematic visuals, and an amazing array of very talented cast. I was particularly taken by the cinematography, the vibrant colors, all carefully muted to take the sharp edge away.

It was for me, very very spectacular to watch as a movie, filled to its 10 gallon brim with motion, movement, rhythm and grace. And again, I was captivated by both the classic western style storyline, and the performances of a group of actors who for the most part would not have English as a first, or possibly even a second language. Yet they still totally kicked ass. Just with spurs on... OUCH!!!

There's no shortage of action, carnage, comedy, and the body count, while not on a Rambo scale, isn't too shabby. There's bucket loads of blood for those of us who appreciate Miike's  ultra-violent imagery, and there's enough shoot outs and sword fighting to satisfy most lovers of the action genre.

By the same token, there's plenty of the ol' "deep and meaningful" in the storyline and plot as well, which from a punter's point of view makes it all the more fun. The dialogue is witty, quick, and well suited to genre, and certainly contributes to the film's fast paced style. Like most Takashi Miike films, this baby moves. And she moves quick. I never found myself scratching from boredom, and all my movie going senses were more than catered for. Sight, sound, story, engagement, it was all there in bucketloads. Even the dreaded cameo from Quentin Tarrantino didn't ruin it for me. At 1st, i must admit I kinda braced myself  for it, but by his 2nd and 3rd appearances, rather than being the usual self indulgent wankfest you expect to occur, it didn't, and his character did add some value to the overall story, and even a hardass motherfucker like myself kinda giggled when he appears in the "Autobot" wheelchair towards the end of the film. More than meets the eye...

For sure, this movie won't be everyone's idea of a great cinematic experience, but it was more than enough for me. It had all the right moves to fill my action and carnage need, my love of engaging story lines, took my breathe away with dazzling cinematography, set and costume design, and offered up a cast of players who never left you in any doubt that this was a goddamn cowboy movie. With swords....

I felt the story was a perfect adaptation of your classic Italian spaghetti western, had all the elements needed to engage me from go to whoa, and I would have no problem in watching it again. And again. And again. Guaranteed a cult classic, and fully ranked high in my personal opinion.



Director: Takashi Miike
Producer: Masato Osaki
Cinematography: Toyomichi Kurita
Written by: Masa Nakamura
Staring: Hideaki Ito, Masanobu Ando, Shun Oguri and Quentin Tarrantino



Written review by stonerphonic © June 2010
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