Leave Out All The Rest – A Love Letter to Chester Bennington

I was a high school freshman in 1999.

This is a time of peak of pre-technology; we oo’d and ah’d at anyone who had a cell phone; pagers were common, pay phones everywhere and you could afford to fuck around in New York City.

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to hell with your DMs

High school felt a lot like a prison, particularly where I went to school. A five story block of concrete in the city where the windows were double paned and grime slicked thanks to the constant traffic. We accepted that the next four years were going to be incredibly weird but that’s what happens when you turn 14 and are expected to prepare for the rest of your life with a bunch of equally lost young humans. We shared things. We shared a lot of music. This is a time where CD players and mix CDs were currency. If you had a burner on your computer tower. Sure, you could download the shit out of music from Napster, Kazaa, Limewire, Frostwire and whatever else you could risk to download on your computer on AOL’s mind bending 256k modem. If you could do that, you could burn CDs and then you’d basically be the hero we didn’t deserve. You had two types; the all silver spindle ones that cost a mint from The Wiz or gold from Staples which had a higher write speed and was FUCKING GOLD. The silver ones were fun to print stickers onto (an additional 10 bucks) and the gold ones had little lines that made it easier to write track listings on.

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I have SPOOLS of these

 

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remember these?

 

I routinely carried around a CD player, chunky headphones a stack of batteries and a black CD binder, the kind that make people blush today because WHO THE FUCK EVEN USES THOSE? I did. It’s the millennium and dammit we wouldn’t have iPods until my first year of college. I had everything for the most part, CDs I bought with my money saved from working as a camp councilor, my mom’s generosity while wandering the aisles of The Wiz in The Bronx. Back then, you needed to spend time in a record store, electronics emporium or the mall to get music. Or risk herpes on the home computer when downloading songs. Oh and by the way, on a dial up modem, it took you four hours for a three minute song and it was a FUCKING CRAP SHOOT on the quality and the actual song.

Ask an old and they’ll tell you, it was either a radio rip, a midi version (old ringtones for the unkillable Nokia phone) or Bill Clinton telling you don’t fucking download you bastard.

You had to talk to the Gen Xers who ran those shops and ‘well actually’d’ you while you were digging through the racks, looking for something that spoke to your blossoming angst. They’d push all kinds of albums on you and at $10-15 a pop you were really trusting the art, the artist and the root of those songs to sell you on it. It also helped that if those albums sucked, you could return them. Such blessings in those days.

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nobody did beat it. the owner was also a little nuts

 

I listed to everything. I still do. I grew up in a salsa, disco, pop house; rock was not a thing that was listened to in the house. My mom and godmother remember Beatlemania but were so whatever about it they might as well have been a kid born today shrugging through One Direction’s 45 minutes of fame. I remember a commercial for a concert in Alaska or somewhere with Nada Surf, Hole and headliner Metallica. (I think it’s this one but I don’t know, I watched a lot of TV) It was some Budwieser thing or some terrible beer. I remember the commercial having an overhead aerial shot of a snowy ground, big black stage and brilliant lights. They used “Enter Sandman” as their promo music. I found 92.3 KRock in New York, straining my ears, listening for that song. Discovering Soundgarden. Being confused by Nirvana. I wasn’t sure why I liked it, why I sought it out but I always figure maybe it found me.

I was sitting in some class in 1999, bored and half listening to the teacher because the day was almost over and quite frankly, I already knew what was being taught. A classmate, Maria (I can’t remember her last name and in the last year or so I threw out my yearbook so I can’t even look it up. If you’re reading this, thank you for sharing) handed over a burn CD she had from a band named Linkin Park.

“Okay…”

It was a GOLD cd so I knew it was real.

“Trust me, you’re going to love it.”

I nodded, took the CD and gave it a spin on my train ride home.

The mix CD was a combination of their demo EP, when they’d officially become Linkin Park after having been Xero for a few years. It had songs like My December, Step Up, the demo for A Place for My Head (Which I’ve always wanted as a mash up against Coldplay’s A Rush of Blood to The Head) a bunch others. The rest of the CD (a whopping 18 tracks because bless those CDs and compressed MP3 files) was their debut album, Hybrid Theory.

I memorized everything about it. The melody. The lyrics. The fact that there’s a dude rapping while another dude is wailing his lungs out.

I asked for my own copy.

It’s a gold copy.

I still have it.

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That’s the second copy of Hybrid Theory I own; the first was a victim of gravity.

There was something about the juxtaposition of rap (which my mom hated) and rock (which she also hated) that spoke to me. Unlike anything in music at the time, Linkin Park heralded the beginning of Nu-Metal; a combination of grunge’s angsty past, the 90s miasma and a lot of hair dye. Modern rock radio hated it, they’d been playing grunge and 80s hair metal for years and no one wanted that new music. They toured. They played gigs everywhere and no one knew what to make of Chester’s nasal vocals against Mike’s spitfire lyrics, gelling with the loops from Joe Hahn’s turntables keeping time to Rob’s deft drumming while Phoenix and Brad somehow effortlessly wove themselves into the fabric of this truly unique sound. They picked up Limp Bizkit (the few things to come from Florida I’ll admit I still bump) they elevated Korn, they introduced the world to the Deftones, made college guys take poetry classes because of Incubus, got political with System of a Down and of course, buy all the chain wallets available at the still quite gawth Hot Topic. Punk was still happening of course. Green Day released an album in 1999 with the bittersweet “Time of Your Life” while Eve 6 was jamming “Here’s To The Night” You had bands like Lit (here and gone but godamn what a solid band name right?) No Doubt was floating around on the wings of Gwen Stefani and the power of ska skating around the flaming rink of this nu genre.

I would run to the local Barnes and Noble near my high school to read through everything available from Revolver Magazine, Hit Parader NME, the rock versions of Bop and Tiger Beat. I’d read about how Jonathan Davis while on the first ever Family Values tour spent a good portion of the tour throwing deli slices of bologna at strippers asses. How Corey from Slipknot told Matt Pinfield (bald MTV bae) that he’d vomit on stage if asked to share festival time with the biggest band in the world; The Backstreet Boys. Deep reads in Rolling Stone about how nu-metal was basically the backwards slide into hillbilly stupidity but they’d cover it because it beat the dead 90s scene, the tragic stalling that rap was facing and the as yet to erupt teen explosion. They hadn’t met Slim or Marilyn just yet. I would buy the occasional magazine for the posters and the hard to get stickers. They became an obsession. I truly admired the work they were doing and by 2000 I’d basically become a teenage music shithead.

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fuck. people were caping HARD for Kid Rock.

Their albums seemed to be timed to some of the strangest times of my life. Reanimation (the remix album to their debut) was basically a who’s who of the scene. Everyone pulled apart the songs on Hybrid Theory and created masterworks. It was a take it or leave it album for many but the idea of starting college that year (2002) meant my life was being reorganized. I lost friends from high school to time and to their decisions. I watched my city come together in a post 9/11 world. I was at my first gig that wasn’t a summer camp job. I had a cell phone. There was an honesty that seemed to come through in lyrics that, to someone who’s just listening to it, sounded less than poetic and felt contrived. Against the pop landscape (don’t get me wrong, I was still bumping the SHIT out of BSB and Nsync even though I could see their longevity coming to a quick end. Even with TRL behind them) Reanimation cemented my belief in this band.

By 2003, Meteora was on rotation full tilt. I was in a relationship, I was working, I was building out my empire. I’d gone to a bunch of shows. Papa Roach, Evanescence (fuck you very much) I still felt a little uneasy about adulthood and was adjusting to life as one does. My brother would suffer a traumatic accident that year that changed the both of us. Music was there. I bought him Blink-182’s self titled CD. At that point, I had my first iPod after the both of us sharing a sony mini disc player. I’d take the discs home and transfer all my music to this little device to keep my brother company while he was in the hospital. I have a hard time listening to that blink album because of think of when we’d sit still and think about how he almost died.

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While listening to LP’s second full album, one song stuck out because, as usual, this band had a way to soundtrack my life. Before getting the Kill Bill animation treatment, Breaking The Habit was it. That was the song. 

Clutching my cure
I tightly lock the door
I try to catch my breath again
I hurt much more than any time before
I have no options left again
I don’t want to be the one the battles always choose
’cause inside I realize that I’m the one confused

I was struggling with depression, darker thoughts and trying to keep my head above water. I remember crying listening to this song. I cry alone a lot. In the dark for added theatrics. This song was just…everything.

2004 Collision Course is released and I keep telling people stop hating this band. Plus, it really cemented Jay Z as a person will solid touchstones in music…even if he still can’t figure out what to do with Rita Ora. The fun thing about this is that, A, everyone starts to hate LP and I’m super into how much easier it is for me to understand Jay’s delivery. It started out as a random mashup between an LP song and a Jay song that some DJ in LA did one night that went radio viral. I’d stay up listening to the radio just to catch that song and it was worth it.

2007 Minutes to Midnight is out. I’m somewhere in this world, working and keeping the family afloat. I’m in my desired field, confused, angry (as usual) and trying to claw my way up in the world. I was still two years away from Target and floating around in random freelance jobs but this album, hated by many, was a constant soundtrack. I was dealing with a messy breakup and a complicated relationship, casually dropped out of school and was out in the world fucking up per usual. It’s possibly the most angst ridden album in their discography (yes, even mopier than Hybrid Theory, fight me) and runs the complete range of emotion. Set against the backdrop of the Bush Administration (hi, remember that asshole?) the war in Iraq, my friends in combat zones and the that uncertain feeling that surrounded all of us, MtM is an album that really is the soundtrack to dystopia. It’s fantastic. It’s cinematic. I defend the album to the death. It carries me through.

I get to see them for the first time ever in 2007 at the now defunct Bamboozle Festival in scenic New Jersey. I survive a garbage rainbow during Killswitch Engaged (cans of beer…please don’t let it be piss hurt) I pull Red out of a mosh pit during Taking Back Sunday and cry during Linkin Park’s set.

I see them again that same year with My Chemical Romance at Jones Beach.

I swear to never go to festivals again.

(I work them for a living now but it’s much nicer with a press pass, a clean bathroom to piss in and pit access)

By 2010, I’m a year in at Target and work right across the street from Best Buy. Now, technology has advanced leaps and bounds and my ass going across the parking lot to buy an album is worthy of it’s own 40 minute documentary narrated by David Attenborough and shot in high definition for the BBC. I know, I work in Target but they didn’t have the deluxe edition with bonus songs and a tee shirt. iTunes is a thing, Spotify was in it’s infancy, radio had changed formats now that you could download anything in torrent form at high speeds because FUCK YEAH BROADBAND. I still clung to my CD collection and had a laptop that read them so why the fuck wouldn’t I enjoy ripping CDs to my iPod for my pleasure? The band released A Thousand Suns and the first time I listened to it was in the dark on a stereo I’d stolen in college.

The first song, The Requiem, on a great sound system in the dark is the kind of thing that gives you the absolute creeps. I lay there, in the dark, listening to an album that I knew was going to change the way I wrote. It did. I banged out a super long story that once I have more than 20 minutes to myself and am not eating, playing video games or taking a shit, I’ll actually transcribe to digital. It was an album where things were abandoned. The chaos was here. Everyone I knew hated it. I was thankful for it. I was depressed at work and trying to find ways out of it. I was in a relationship that was in its infancy but still felt like it was going somewhere. (We didn’t understand each other) It was fueling me when I lost that job and I believed that I could just survive the wreckage, drag my broken carcass out of the mess and find a pay phone to call for the cops. I also stan hard for this album.

In 2011 I took my brother to see them; it’s his first concert and he gets a pick from Brad’s guitar tech. we almost cry in the elevator.

2012

I’m single, I’m in a great pain in the ass job that’s training ground for newer bigger things and Linkin Park releases Living Things. My friends hate it, they miss the old Linkin Park like I miss the old Kanye. They’re experimental. Mike’s been listening to something else, Chester has been dabbling with his other band, Dead by Sunrise, Joe’s been scoring movies and directing videos. They’re all older. I’m older. I’m in my mid 20s still carrying a banner for this band that once a fucking gain make an album that I swear was written for me to keep me sane and it’s on constant rotation.

2013 – Recharged. Fuck me this is gym music.

The Hunting Party comes out on my birthday, 6/13/2014. I’m 30 years old unwrapping this CD from Best Buy alone in my apartment, laptop open, iPod ready and I press play. They’ve gone back to the start. I feel like they’re on the same path as I am. I’m working. I’m paid. I’m working through some shit and I’m going to be okay. They’re fighting a war. Nu Metal doesn’t exist anymore. Mainstream radio has moved from the wave and embraced EDM, rap, pop is in a strange place where your mom knows more songs than you do. Downloading is king, spotify is on everyone’s phones, torrents are a thing of the past because those kids who couldn’t afford an album are now forking out $10 for your album and everyone else’s in one shot. Rock radio in New York is dead except for the classic rock station (that played Nirvana once and I wanted to die) but here they are, raging away. I could tell the dynamic was changing. Why wouldn’t it? It’s been 20 years by this point. We’ve been doing this thing for twenty years. In that time, I’ve been in a few relationships, worked a bunch of jobs, dealt with family illnesses and crisis’. Gone to two Coldplay shows in the same year with someone who hated me, interviewed at a dozen places but still kind of just floating along. I was writing for Vh-1 and never got paid for it so I was angry (again usual state of affairs) but here I was, raging against all of it. I was 30, like why THE FUCK would I continue to keep batting zeros?! I clung to that album like a lifeboat, even while rotating around different genres it was them. It was always them.

Here we are, 2017 and in May they release One More Light. I hate it. It’s so. Mainstream top 40 midlevel we didn’t try album but I memorize it anyway and one day on the train, I’m really listening to it. It’s actually quite good. I realize that there is exactly a decade between me and this band that’s been mine for a huge portion of my life. They are going to slow down. Chester can’t keep up with his vocals, Mike can’t keep rapping about forfeiting the game and…well…I mean…we’re old. Again, it’s an album that should’ve felt like it was right for me at the right time. I’m employed, in a stable relationship, my family is healthy, I’ve FINALLY traveled around a bit. It just felt strange, forced, almost wrong. Coldplay putting out Mylo Xyloto made sense because Chris Martin is a twee pixie and likes neon on all black everything. Linkin Park was dick jokes, wizard songs and working in the trenches but seeing all the press and promo for the release, they’d all seemed so excited about the album and here I was being salty about it. A lot of love went into it. Maybe that’s why it felt so foreign. Love. I’d been trying to define it and my favorite band had done it but I didn’t realize it.

We’re happy we’re old. It means that in the last 20 years we survived some weird shit. In between releasing solo albums, side projects, taking breaks, remixing albums, opening tattoo shops, getting random jobs, traveling around the country we’ve gotten some milage and by golly did we not think we’d get here. We’re good. We’re content. We’re…dare it be said…happy. All of this work, all of this struggle leads to being able to wake up and say, even though it’s a shitty day it’s a day I woke up.

All of this is to say, Chester, I understand. Like Chris Cornell (on who’s birthday we lost Chester) Wayne Static, Robin Williams, Stevie Ryan…everyone we’ve lost to depression it’s a show. We are happy and we have outrun the demons and the darkness and the sun feels incredible but there’s always something that fear that it’s going to go wrong or it’s just not going to stay this way forever. I’m not speaking for him. No one can. I’ve shared that brain though. I’ve been on medication for almost a year now and while it feels better, it feels like it’s going to be okay, I’ve spent a week in bed wondering why I even get up.

My brother sent me a text message with a link to TMZ saying they’d found him dead at 1p EST. I started crying. I’m sitting with a co-worker, my heart stopped and my stomach dropped. He was 41. I didn’t know him. His bandmates and family did. We knew him through music and interviews he’d given about his addictions, projects everything was in text and video just out of reach but right there for it to be real. I hate TMZ for being so good at their jobs. That 2pm text message is going to be the thing that makes my skin crawl. I went upstairs and kept fighting tears. The word was spreading. People were talking about this band again. Googling them. They had no idea they’d put out an album. No idea that they were in the middle of a massive world wide tour. A handful of co-workers were going to Blinkin Park on July 28th. We’re devastated. The office had a strange, “oh shit remember these guys” moment that felt surreal because for me, for millions, they’d never dropped off. They’d never disappeared, never struggled with genre death the way so many other bands in their field had. Limp Bizkit is tied to a redonk deal with Cash Money Records and have released three albums since. System of a Down has disbanded for the most part. Korn slipped into obscurity and landed a wild dub step album but continue to tour. Slipknot got better and better and Corey’s vocals both for them and Stone Sour are the gravel tones of legend. Papa Roach continues to put out albums (Crooked Teeth is solid) and in the wake of nu-metal’s collapse came metal core, Bring me The Horizon (a fav) As I Lay Dying, All That Remains, A Day to Remember all of them owing their foundations to Linkin Park. Linkin Park had never stopped being a thing. I’m sad seeing these headlines about him, about the band, how they’d finally charted with One More Light after having it floating around in the cheap seats for awhile.

Listening through the discography again, it’s actually chilling. I can see where Chester was just laying out diary entry after diary entry about a man who’d been through a lot of shit and found the most eclectic way to express it. Mike, well, Mike is a quiet guy and who knows what he went through but they found a way (a way that dual vocalists struggle with I think) to be each other’s balance. They had a way to communicate that may not be a thing for any band anytime soon but then again, I’m biased. Maybe it’s because he’s gone that I’m hearing them differently. I’m hearing someone else’s sadness instead of my own. Someone else’s rage instead of mine. I can hear someone saying, I’ve been through this I’m making it, I’m working through it and I think you can to. We may not have the same outcomes, it may not be the same place at the same time but we have somewhere to go. I have crying fits. The music is hard to listen to because of the way it’s framed now. because we know the end of the story in comparison to where it was going. I listened to Minutes to Midnight on the way home and remember why it’d been such a standout for me. It’s thought waves; cresting, ebbing flowing, tide coming in and coming out. It’s the eye of the storm but you’re the storm.

Depression is hard. Substance abuse is hard. Not drinking. Not smoking. Not popping pills. All of it is hard. All of it. I had no idea at 14 I’d still be listening to this band at 33; that they’d narrate all the major keys in my life and I don’t know if they ever thought they’d be this impactful on anyone. They just wanted to make some new noises in the sea of noise that is music. He was writing new music. They were starting the North American tour. We all connected in this weird place called the internet, the street, sharing just out here talking to each other the only way we knew how. I don’t know if we’ll ever get anyone or any group like this.

Thank you for being. Thank you for existing. Thank you for the honesty, the risk taking and the journey. You are part of a grander scheme now with people who are equally loved and who were just too good to be in this dimension for much longer. You are all now the stuff of stars and planets that makes this one continue to burn in the darkness and though we’ve never met, you’re still someone that will be held dear in our hearts.

Everyone struggles. Like I’ve always said, please, check on your people. Make sure you listen to them when you ask “are you okay” be a pain in the ass. Sit next to them when they’re down, when they’re out, when they’re happy. Just be there. Carry them through whatever it is even if they say fuck off. Even if there really isn’t anything wrong. Please hug them. Please leave them a note or a stupid DM or give them a hug. Everyone is teetering dangerously close on the edge of something and we just need to hold on.

What I Learned: August 14

This week, I spend time in Tarrytown in a rental car listening to trap music, complete the lap that made me almost weep, learn that technology is not your friend and that being a workaholic is a better substitute for alcohol.

Saturday:

I’m up with the birds and armed with Apple Maps (which, fuck you by the way) I climb into rented Ford Focus and feel like I’m in a jet because I’m doing checks like a pilot. I have about 120,000 songs on an iPod and wind up listening to of all things…Fall Out Boy. Don’t judge me, it beat the radio at 7am.

It’s true what they say about driving, your mind completely blanks out and you focus more on piloting a massive machine through highways built years before you were a thought by people who didn’t think those roads would even be traveled for as long as they have been.

You get super philosophical.

I find parking relatively easy at 7:30am (I was in traffic to boot and DIDN’T drag race once it cleared up…) and run upstairs to make sure that everything is where it’s supposed to be. Again. My personal life, total shitshow, professional life sorta put together.

The team shows up and we load in for our epic journey to the most magical place on earth: the MSG Training Center in Tarrytown NY. While on the way, we encounter the fail that is Apple Maps.

Have you ever driven in near circles in the middle of a scenic part of a town and immediately think, we’re a car full of minorities, isn’t this is how horror movies start?

drive faster

I watch too many movies.

Anyways. We make a few turns and wind up where we’re supposed to be…fuck you Apple Maps…sincerely.

I’m about 5’7 which in the WNBA makes me a guard and probably a decent prospect; in the NBA that makes me the water girl. We arrive and check in and walk into the Liberty side of the basketball court.

I’m not gonna lie, I’ve been there before but I still kinda swoon because that’s what I do.

We land some hilarious interviews and shoot what could be the hit of our mini summer vacation.

We climb back into the car, strangely inspired by the entire day (it was two hours that felt like less than that which is saying something) get 5 Napkin Burgers (which is a miracle) and pile into the office for a late shift.

Sunday:

Even if you want to play a game of treat yo self, you still wind up being incredibly responsible and climb into the fray super early and with a box of bagels for your mom. You also want nothing more than to get another win in terms of getting that date to happen.

The date doesn’t happen.

The sobbing continues.

On the upside, we get two great videos lined up and good to go and I land another byline for work.

I learned that I have to master the art of multitasking.

Also. John Wick is awesome.

Adrienne Palicki, Bridget Reagan and Keanu Reeves carrying guns and being complete assholes. this is basically porn.

Monday:

Screaming matches over stupid things are always fun.

Driving around late at night is even more fun.

I tackled the FDR to the West Side Highway and like a superhero, sat and listened to Kid Cudi wondering about what the hell life is doing with me and my fate these days. I miss the opportunity to get Waffle for a drive around because Waffle being Waffle kept being Waffle and wiffled on me. I was tempted to be a creeper and sit in the car outside waiting but decided that I can’t keep reeking of desperation. The fact that Waffle would’ve gotten in the car with me for fun while I said nothing and blasted music and driven around until drop off at work. These are the things that make me feel all kinds of funny to be honest. I learned that I should just trust my lack of impulse control when it comes to these kinds of situations. Especially when I want to share views like this. IMG_2932

My drive looked nothing like this but I did in fact blast Steve Aoki, so I guess you could say, we were on track.

Tuesday:

So I had rum and cokes.

Wednesday:

Multitasking is multi-taxing but it’s done and honestly, I keep telling myself, I was unemployed last year. Stop bitching so fucking much.

I mean it’s one thing to be overwhelmed and completely burned out but it’s a whole other level if you’re completely like…miserable.

I can’t be miserable.

My brain can’t process that correctly.

My brain shorts out actually.

I know I’m due for a meltdown but I’m also due for an upgrade so I guess you have to burn things down to build something new from it.

I wind up in Jim Hanley’s Universe and have rather interesting conversations about some of the plot fuck ups in X-Factor (which I have admittedly not been keeping up with) but apparently, it’s a big nasty soap opera. I love the fact that out of many of the shops that I’ve been to, this is the only one that actively keeps you in the store with shit talk and comic gossip rather than aisle after aisle of things to look at and maybe consider buying. There’s a strange comfort in the nerd herd. Unsurprisingly, I pick up a bunch of titles that will take me until NEXT WEEK, to read but fuck it, I mean it’s what happens when you work; you get to do things you love.

One day I will write and work for Marvel.

It’s on the list of things to do before I die.

So’s a trip to London.

Fuck it, let’s do both.

Thursday:

Accomplished many a thing, including successfully feeding myself at a decent hour, addressing stuff and things and planning planning planning.

I wound up getting a preview screening pass to see Straight Outta Compton through work which was sweet. It’s insane that all this happened in my lifetime and I’ve basically grown up with this music; I lived through the of many anti-establishment movements fueled by music and made by people who just wanted their voices heard and the vision to just make shit happen. That doesn’t work anymore does it? That unyielding sense of success and self confidence that is needed to take what sounds like a failing idea or a longshot and make it actually happen. Think about it. Ice Cube was the hardest rapper in the game (still is) at the time and just transitioned because he just wanted to do it. Dre just wanted to make music that didn’t suck and E just had the momentum to bring everyone together. It’s probably one of the best made music biopics and some of the moments that happen made me oddly nostalgic for the time where my mom said I couldn’t listen to Metallica, NWA, Public Enemy and when she caught on, The Beastie Boys. Kids aren’t told ‘that’s bad for you’ and if they are, they don’t give a flying fuck. Go see it, it’s worth it.

It’s also creepy how damn near EXACT O’Shea Jackson Jr. resembles his father.

Best cosplay ever.

Friday:

For Whom The Bell Tolls indeed.

In on time despite a late start, doing a bunch of things for the next three days and eagerly anticipating…I dunno…a small moment to think, read a comic book and do more writing because I owe some people some of my letters rearranged into words.

Friday:

I had a salad. That’s not interesting until you realize and understand that my fat ass wants a burger and booze and to be left alone with Waffle on a romantic dinner date where all we do is talk shit and laugh at things.

I’m seeking a gal pal at this point.

An Angie to my  Peggy.

A Sandy to my Danny.

A Laura to my Carmilla.

Basically I’m just rehashing old feelings.

The weekend should be spectacular. Stay tuned.

Justin Timberlake’s New Video

There’s Voli (Pitbull)

There’s Circo (Diddy)

There’s El Cartel (Daddy Yankee)

There’s Crystal Head (Dan Aykroyd. I KNOW?!)

Casamigos (George Clooney) -missed branding for Migos though-

Casa Noble (Carlos Santana)

There are a few celebrity owned and championed liquors out on the market but very few of them have gone above and beyond to showcase their belief in the brand.

Enter. Justin Timberlake.

If you caught J.T on his 20/20 World Tour you’ll recall he had a VIP section bar that served Sauza 901. Timberlake, a native of Tennessee, forwent doing whiskey for tequila. Yesterday, Timberlake launched a video where the actor musician and a few other friends are donning giant limeheads and talking about their time in the spotlight before the apparently super smooth and mega tasty Sauza rolled up and fucked it all up with it’s ability to be enjoyed lime free. The clip feels like a lost episode of Behind The Music (Maybe Behind The Bar? SHOW IDEA!) and follows the lime’s rise and fall in the world of booze accouterment.

It makes sense too.

Today is the made up holiday  and Sauza is a tequila so….

Happy Cinco De Mayo

iPhone vs Android or How I Discovered My Relationship Style

Technology is amazing isn’t it? We can communicate 24/7 we can selfie ourselves sick and we can Yelp about how awesome this Thai place is from a mobile device. Two weeks ago, Apple unveiled the iPhone 6 and it’s been interesting to watch how it didn’t quite meet the standards iPhone users and tech heads had come to expect from the juggernaut company.

I wanted a new phone. I’ve had an iPhone 4s for a few years and have come to love all the things that it can do, basic as it may seem.

I wanted to feel fresh bold and new, the way a fancy new piece of tech can make you feel.

I decided to upgrade and wound up with a big Samsung Galaxy 5s.

I went back to my iPhone after one day.

What happened? Wasn’t I so totally head over heels with the Samsung? Didn’t I want to take all the elaborate photos and videos and go, ‘I’ve moved on Apple, you lack innovation’ ? Wasn’t I totally upset when U2 appeared on my phone for no reason? Of course I was. I was ready to move on and then I realized, the text messages from the one person who I value the most weren’t coming in and they weren’t seeing anything I was sending. Suddenly, a panic. All the photos and videos and easy to draw dicks on people’s faces (there’s an app for that) in the world couldn’t save me from the fact that I couldn’t communicate with the one person who means the world to me.

My brother was ecstatic.

I’d finally dumped iPhone for Samsung and he had so many things he wanted to show me but in the back of my mind, I kept thinking, Black Widow had done so much for me that it was hard to just start working with Sam. I was cheating. I was cheating on the phone that had been so good and loyal to me despite all the times I’d wanted to throw it out a window, shoot it with an m-4 rifle then detonate a claymore right on top of it. It had been good to me and here I was, wanting something new when we both knew that wasn’t how this was going to work.

I researched, I toyed with it. I watched videos and tried to find reasons why having this flatscreen pressed to my face would make me happy and I realized that what I really use the phone for is communication, sending random photos and of course, talking to another person.

legit search history

I’d compared notes and tested both phones in store before walking away but I was struck with tremendous sense of guilt and a little bit of sadness, feelings you get when you walk away from a relationship. I’d had Black Widow (my iPhone 4s) for about 3 years and in that time I’d seen so many concerts, Tweeted so many douchebagy things, taken adorable pictures and watched the most random videos on this thing. I’d had arguments that should’ve never happened, text wars that didn’t make any sense and all emoji texts with said person who was really the reason why I was going back to the iPhone.

What does all of this say about me as a person?

I value experiences and memories over making something new happen. New experiences are great as long as they’re with someone or something familiar because you always want to broaden your horizons with the thing that reminds you of how far you’ve come and how much more there is to go. I like knowing that the phone I took a certain picture on is the same one in my hand when I’m taking a new picture. I like to compare their flaws, I like to know that I love them regardless of that and my having every version of a picture or operating system or hell, even a case, is enough to make me glad that I have them in the first place.

I’m loyal. Even if you’re doing something stupid, I’ll be with you to make sure you’ve learned something from this royally stupid mistake and even then, I won’t make fun of you for it, I’ll be glad that you tried something different and stayed true to yourself.

I like them shy I guess, the type that surprise you with how simple things make your day easier. They’re intuitive without needing to be shown.

A lot of Apple slander happened while I was debating phones, it sounded a lot like comparing partners. I defended Apple’s snobby elitism when it came to apps; I’d rather use who you trust than just let anybody into my life. It’s clean and fits without being eye catching. You notice it, do a double take and wonder how’d they get together. Much of what Samsung does is directly influenced by Apple so it’s like why are you doing the extra to get noticed? Samsung’s so big and bold and Apple is humdrum and simple. I’m simple. I’m boring actually, so it makes sense that I like the tried and true personality of an Apple versus the LOOK AT ME IM SO BIG I’M A BEAST bravado of the Samsung series. They’ve got a lot of great things going for them and I’m sure there will come a point where I really just don’t want to be using an Apple product anymore but again, the nostalgia, the comfort and knowledge that this phone was with you when you needed someone to talk to keeps me on the iPhone team.

I hated that the Samsung demanded I use my Gmail account to connect everything. Sure, you need an Apple ID but it asks you if you want to download things whereas with Google Play, all the things you do on your email gets shopped around and the phone just takes whatever it wants. You have to tell it to stop downloading things. I don’t want people to know that I spend way too much time on tumblr looking at gif sets of my OTP’s THAT IS MY TIME AND YOU DON’T GET TO SHARE IT!

I didn’t like that the Samsung told me I was stupid for not getting Swype or that my pictures needed to be enhanced somehow. I’m like, “sweetheart, you have a 16 megapixel camera, far better than any other phone in the market but I still see blotchy images that I have to fix in post. You’re not that good looking that I have to perform miracles on you okay? ”

Back to the relationship thing.

It terrified me walking around with this phone I didn’t know.

We were strangers on a first date, trying to get to know each other, being awkward. I asked what it liked to do and it told me, Ask Google. I asked if it liked taking pictures of cats and it said, ‘Sure yeah whatever we can do that’ I tried watching a movie on it and it was nice, we connected but we were silent, occasionally brushing fingertips in the popcorn and cringing at the contact. I changed the interface to closer resemble the iPhone, labeling my folders in the same quirky manner that I had with iPhone. It felt wrong somehow. I was making this phone more like me instead of it making me work and adapt and understand each other’s quirks.

At the end of the night, the Samsung kinda sat on my bed, big and bright, wanting me to play with it some more while my iPhone sat on an end table, quiet, stoic, understanding. I wound up Tweeting from my iPhone about how much I wasn’t enjoying Samsung, confessing to the main piece that you had one night with the side piece and it was awful. The iPhone was polite, listened and understood; it wasn’t personal, sometimes you just have to see the world to appreciate the beauty of your own front yard. I tossed and turned all night, checking on Sam and Black Widow to see who’d text me (I’d left the wifi on the iPhone on since the phone itself was disconnected) and no one said anything to me.

I work up this morning and called my carrier and cancelled the Samsung. The tech on the other line was surprised, almost shocked that I’d just bought this glorious masterpiece of tech and I was going back to the same old same old. She was understanding (I gave her a five rating for her service) and walked me through the process of one night stand with Sam. I’d have to go back to the store and tell them why Sam and I just weren’t going to work out.

I backed up Black Widow onto the Tardis, my Macbook Pro. My wallpaper the same one from an August concert with the one person I constantly communicate with (and with whom the double entendre of this post is for) my apps back where they belong and everything seemed to right itself. The simplicity of knowing that this relationship is just going to make sense because we make sense settled over me like the blanket I want my boo to cover me when it’s cold out. We read each other’s thoughts and know what the other needs without having to be explicit about it.

I’m back with my iPhone and who knows what the future holds, I just know as long as there is an outlet and I have a charging cable, I’ll trust where we’re going.

Iggy Azalea The Fappening and The Cloud

A lot can be said and has been said about Aussie rapper Iggy Azalea and whether you can live with her or live without her does not take away from the fact that she’s at the crosshairs of what seems to be scorned lover’s revenge.

Jefe Wine or Hefe Wine or grown man who still clings to waning rap dreams is a producer/ person who was involved in Iggy’s early development claims to have a tape featuring the starlet in what was believed to be a private moment. The story alters where her camp claims that she was underage while he claims that was not the case but let’s all agree that it’s gross and continue.

Whether she was under age, consenting or caught on camera for someone’s spank bank, she’s absolutely right in saying that anyone who wants to profit from the alleged sex tape currently being shopped around is in fact a sex offender. Taking to Twitter, the rapper reiterated that she doesn’t have a tape and anyone who tries to sell off whatever they’re claiming is her is wrong.

Screen Shot 2014-09-15 at 3.59.18 PM

From Iggy’s Twitter feed

Since the rant, she’s remained silent, letting her legal team handle the controversy while she promotes her latest single featuring Rita Ora, “Black Widow” and while she’s stayed mum, Hefe Wine (really, that’s his name) continues his media tour defending himself and his actions. Thankfully, no screen grabs have appeared so far and hopefully they will never see the light of day but the fact that the demand for celebrity skin has boomed, culminating with The Fappening. A few days before Iggygate, hackers managed to access sensitive photos of several actresses, including Jennifer Lawrence, in various stages of nekkid selfie, posting them onto online creep capitol 4Chan and Reddit for the world to see.

While CNN demanded to know just WHO 4Chan is (it’s just…it’s the part of the internet the internet wish didn’t exist) normal human beings responded correctly: WHO THE HELL WOULD DO THIS AND WHY DO YOU WANT TO SEE THESE PICTURES?!

It doesn’t matter who the hell 4Chan is, what matters is that there is a place that openly practices the wild violations and fuels the worst web habits out of people.

Mercifully, a massive investigation was launched to find out just who managed to compromise so many accounts and rightfully prosecute them. No one should make money from theft and the hope is that proper legislation is passed to prevent entities like Vivid Entertainment from profiting from stolen merchandise not to mention the fact that this is effectively a violation of these women’s personal and private photos, whatever they are. We care as a culture because they’re famous, this is what they signed up for but the fact is, the same way that Rate My Ex was the bane of average women’s existence is the same way incidents like The Fappening are for celebrities. We should take caution as a culture to be careful about who we share these moments with and where we send these pictures.

THE CLOUD IS NOT YOUR FRIEND.

We don’t understand it. It’s there, but it’s not and it saves all your stuff? What why? Why don’t you just plug in your laptop and download everything, save it in a lock folder and never look at it again. Simple. The Starz Saturday Premiere movie “Sex Tape” made light of the mysteries of The Cloud but I’ve spoken to IT specialists who are completely fucking confused by it. We don’t get it. No one understands how it works and if you say you do, you’re a dirty liar. Just go into your settings, do it right now (leave this tab open) and make sure you disable that thing NOW.

the one time no one wanted a sex tape

 

It’s not just women who send out sometimes questionable things, guys have sent out dick pics and the most that’s happened are “do you even lift bruh ?” jokes. Anthony Weiner, Geraldo, Tito Ortiz have all sent the unnecessary dick pic or shirtless fading masculinity photo that ultimately leaked and they died out on the wind just as quickly as they appeared. For men, it’s a showcase of their masculinity and it seemed almost culturally acceptable for these pictures to appear, because I don’t know about you but nothing says romance like a dick pic. Women on he other hand, have to have this alluring quality about their photos and they don’t ever fade away. Sure I can make a saggy pectoral joke about the guys, but the ladies are forever immortalized in that moment for just how hot they are and are reminded that they will never be that hot again. How we communicate our desires to one another has evolved, especially with how dependent we are on technology for these interactions. Sexting, Skype, Snapchat, we’ve developed a digital language of love that seems to getting bolder and bolder as time goes on. Just imagine when we have holograms.

Hey girl

There’s a sense of one upsmanship that occurs when it comes to letting someone know how you desire them, given how this generation is constantly on the go; we’re never in the same room but if we were, here’s what you should be looking forward to.

Women are subject to far more scrutiny when it comes to the level of sexual explicitness in the confines of their adult textual relationships. The question that comes up most often is, ‘why would she send that?’ We condition ourselves as women to censor our sexuality and the ones who own their sexuality are usually dragged out and shamed. She clearly misbehaved and the photos or video being shared are a direct result of that misbehavior, not the people who received them being irresponsible with them. The people who made something private public aren’t embarrassed as publicly as the subject. In the case of The Fappening, those photos were more than likely meant for the person whom they are involved with, not for the prying eyes of the public. They were taken and sent with trust and for hackers to think that we want to see that is where we as a culture are starting to go down the dark roads in terms of our respect for another human being’s privacy.

Yes, we love to look at other people, especially famous people, that’s what they’re there for and we forget that they are people who just got lucky with either their looks or talent or both. Many celebrities have bounced back and recovered from the scandal, made light of it and continued onward and upward and we’ve forgiven them for the indiscretion. The real problem is that we have yet to figure out just how to stop it from happening and how to stop making it news and wanting to see hot celebs being just like us; we have to be scandalized by it and want justice for that person who’s privacy was violated. We have to put ourselves in their designer shoes and imagine what it would be like to have ourselves plastered everywhere or sold without our permission to the highest bidder. If Kim and Kanye weren’t selling their wedding photos for less than 10 million why shouldn’t someone be able to profit from their own bodies? Remember when everyone went to Playboy when they wanted to show their bits? Those days are gone.

In Iggy’s case, that is straight up no bones about it violation. Whether she was a minor or consenting does not take away from the fact that someone wants to take that tape and make money. In the past, this tactic worked wonders for Paris Hilton and Kim Kardashian, launching their ‘careers’ in the face of public embarrassment but for every ‘success story’ there are millions of women digitally exploited around the world for the sake of entertainment. There are women who’ve had their privacy revoked by partners and people who claim to have their best interests at heart and ultimately stab them in the back by revealing the photos or videos. It’s not just the dissemination of illegally obtained photos and videos, think about the millions of children that could be in that traffic flow. If hackers can get into your phone and snag your naughty bits, what do you think could be happening to the pictures of kids? If it takes something as large scale as The Fappening to spark the government into truly investigating these cases of theft, then so be it. We can be accountable for ourselves and responsible with our technology but like anything, there are people who truly are up to no good and only want to unearth the things that we want buried or that aren’t meant for anyone else.

We complained about how a U2 album landed on our iTunes last week, we should be complaining about how people want to make money from private moments and stop saying it’s her fault.

 

I’m gonna live under a rock.

 

I Listened to U2’s Songs of Innocence Cos It Was Free

So September 9th brought us the new iPhone 6 and the release of the album we didn’t know was coming straight to our iPhones.

In the grand tradition of surprise album releases, the lads launched their 13th studio album on iTunes and into the purchase folders of unsuspecting iTunes users. After checking my charges to make sure I hadn’t been bamboozled and struggling to understand how the hell I could even download it to my laptop (I live in understandable fear of The Cloud) I listened to the album.

You guys remember U2 right?

 

srsly tho, lol whut?

1) The Miracle (of Joey Ramone)

We’ve started with football chanting and fuzzy The Edge guitar far more nuanced than The Ramones.

I was young not dumb just wishing to be blinded

by you brand new we were pilgrims on our way.

Oh this is the song they’re using as part of the promo for new iTunes. Got it.

Bono is implying that they’re old enough to have witnessed the birth of Joey Ramone but I think they were about the same age.

Is it possible to outgrow a band that’s older than you are? Feels like that’s what happening.

2)Every Breaking Wave

Sounds a lot like With or Without You, which isn’t bad but makes me curious about what chords the guys remember playing after 30 years. If you go your way, and I go mine, are we so are we so helpless against the tide? 

 Did Ryan Tedder get involved in this album because it sounds a lot like One Republic.

Ironically enough, I’ve always thought they’ve done better with ballads with epic tracks buried between, sorta like Coldplay.

3) California (There Is No End To Love)

Bells tolling.

Echoy vocoder and we’re chanting Santa Barbara.

Definitely a radio friendly track that plays while your dentist drills mercilessly into your jaw because you let a cavity become a sinkhole.

As a native New Yorker, songs about California make me wonder what New York has done to people that they just don’t write jaunty melodies about how much fun it is to be here. Maybe it just makes people bitter or something.

4) Song for Someone

I take it back, this is the one that sounds more like With or Without You.

was told I would feel nothing the first time. 

This is that dramatic montage music for a romcom…or at the very least use in an upcoming episode of Grey’s Anatomy.

They still have the ability to write some damn anthemic tracks though.

5) Iris (Hold Me Close)

Here we have U2 in all their jangly guitar glory ala Streets Have No Name.

This actually sounds a lot like the early 2000s dance rock bands that were crawling out of the New York woodwork.

The universe is beautiful but cold

New Facebook status.

6) Volcano 

This is only an 11 song album and I’m struggling to care about it.

I’m more engaged with how violator Apple was by ‘gifting’ Apple users with this album. Turns out, they paid $100 million to unload the badboy on everyone. Talk about volcano.

Vol-ca-no

you don’t wanna know

something in you about to blow

I can hear Danger Mouse’s production touches on this somehow. Also because Danger Mouse is wicked talented.

7) Raised by Wolves

Heavy breathing robot.

Bono sounds bored by his own lyrics and vocal delivery.

This actually sounds like the song that rolls at the end of a war documentary, so, you know, a typical U2 song that makes you feel bad for being a first worlder.

This is definitely the ‘war is terrible, politicians are terrible, we should do something about it but first lemme write this anthem’ song that pops up on a U2 album as of late.

it also ends hella abruptly.

8) Cedarwood Road 

Almost had me with a classic 90s BritWave drum loop but we’re actually rehashing Hold Me Thrill Me Kiss Me Kill Me.

One of the things that’s interesting about this band is you’ve never really gotten to know them on a personal level, they’re just so big and this feels like one of those songs that’s supposed to sound personal but it’s just too big to be a simple story.

9) Sleep Like A Baby Tonight

Wake up synth loop anyone?

This is their Discotheque/Sweet Dreams tribute track.

Your eyes as red as Christmas (?)

Again, Bono just sounds like they’re playing around in the studio and he’s bored by the process.

I’m sleeping with this song though. Like, it’s building to something but I’m not sticking around to see what it looks like.

10) This Is Where You Can Reach Me Now

Electric tribal drums, harpsichord and seagulls.

We’re chanting now.

This is a revamped track from Joshua Tree, I can feel it.

Vocals are like, Tears for Fears Shout, which doesn’t sound bad. Guitar riff is She Moves In Mysterious Ways.

I may be annoyed with bands rehashing themselves though.

11) The Troubles

OMG THE FEMALE VOCAL SOUNDS LIKE LYKKI LI AND ALL MY FEELS JUST GOT BUNCHED UP.

This may be the one sound that the band should’ve spent more time trying to cultivate a bit. Downtempo, reverb vocals and guitar.

I can live with denial but you’re not my trouble anymore

Facebook status #2.

On a whole, the album isn’t terrible, the band doesn’t seem to be showing their age and once they hit the road, the hits will start sticking. Maybe thematically they’re running into the same things that made them one of planet Earth’s biggest band, living with or without someone, visiting streets with no names, war is terrible themes always wrap around the band’s lyrics like the shades on Bono’s face. The album isn’t bad, it’s middle of the road music that feels grand because of the spectacle surrounding it’s release but to be honest, Bono and the guys have done much better work with less at stake. It was an interesting listen to say the least but the waves are being felt and time will tell if this is the next wave for music. There are points on the album where  I can see why so many people were like, why is this on my phone and how can I get rid of it? Especially when it comes to the obvious privacy violation on Apple’s part with immediately adding the album to users phones but is that really the issue?

Part of the problem  is that they aren’t the first band you think of when you think of. We’re conditioned to artists who gladly give you free stuff because we like them, they’re popular, it doesn’t feel out of character for them to do it. Whether it’s One Direction’s 24 first single download via their Vevo account, Katy Perry adding karaoke versions of her songs to her site or mix tapes, we like when our artists look out for us and reward us in kind for our patronage. Beyonce lovingly released her self titled via iTunes and with it a bunch of content that her fans eagerly paid for, even with the digital download available and the physical copy weeks away from release. She managed to tap into the consciousness of her fans in a way that made them feel like this was what they wanted; they needed Partition on their phones and computers immediately.

No one wants an album immediately added to their phones without their consent and that’s why everyone’s so mad.

That and the price tags for the new iPhone 6.

REALLY APPLE?!

Many astute iPhone users noticed the album on their phones on September 9th and immediately took to social media to let Apple know they didn’t want this on their phones and sharing tips on how they could get rid of the album immediately. Insane when you think how the band, brand ambassadors since 2003, received an undisclosed blanket deal ($100 million US) to cover the cost of the promotion and free sale of the album to users. Apple tried giving people stuff they knew they weren’t going to really want and then said, nah that’s cool, that’s all you, keep that while closing the door in your face. Is the gamble going to pay off? Perhaps for diehard fans this was really the thing they’d been waiting for and maybe out of curiosity, people will check it out before grumbling and wanting it the hell of of their devices.

Here’s the thing, we’re always wanting free shit and new shit and here is free new shit but nobody wants it. Maybe it speaks to my freeloader, downloading nature but I don’t mind something free every so often. I don’t even use my phone for music, I have an iPod classic to do that because I like to have a phone I can use to call someone to complain about how my iPod classic locked up on me and I’ll be damned if someone forces me to use my phone as a music player. That’s just how I roll.

Remember: the reason why Apple was able to do this was because you didn’t read the Terms of Agreement.

 

Oh and while you were complaining about this, the iPod classic was quietly laid to rest today.

I Listened to “Trigga” Because You Didn’t Tell Me It Was Out

While Usher was sitting in a spin chair on The Voice, he left the lane wide open for other sexy men to infiltrate the musical bedrooms of young ladies. In that time we had Jason Derulo try to get us to “Talk Dirty” (curses, that sax hook is stuck in my head now) and never to be outdone Mr. Steal Your Girl, Trey Songz made us want to work out more with “Nana.” While Usher spends time reminding you why he is really that good, Trigga was released this week so he can bask in the juicy that is dirty sex and booze.

You didn’t tell me.

Now I’m going to listen to it.

Italics are lyrics.

Track 1 Cake

There are not enough songs about booty in the world.

Trap trap trap beats.

:30 I’m taken but I want you

: 48 You can’t have cake and eat it too

but aint that what you supposed to do? 

Cake’s on the menu. 

This song is about Cake. NOTHING ELSE. Trey obviously loves pastries.

Track 2 Foreign

We’re going on a sex adventure with Trey.

Colombia, France, Australia…

This is already better than Talk Dirty only because while naming it manages to convince you that other girls from other countries are hot, there is no sax loop to drive you insane and subsequently have your  parents dance. Passports are important.

You know I had to cop that foreign.

Track 3 Na Na

This song was designed to blow out speakers and probably backs.

I think I already did and I’m alone at home.

ayyeee.

Three tracks in and I think the goal is to have already gotten clothes off.

Track 4 Touchin, Lovin feat Nicki Minaj

Reunited with Nicki and the pre-chorus is a nod to R.Kelly/ Biggie’s Fuckin You Tonight.

The dirty old bitch that I am finds that endearing.

This is the ‘we’re in our underwear’ portion of the album.

IT IS ONLY TRACK 4.

2:40 Nicki bringing the fire, call 911. Lyrically, she’s just been impeccable since dropping that lame persona she picked up from Gaga.

Track 5 Disrespectful ft Mila J

Alright, we’re on a storytelling tip right now. Picture both of you cheating and neither of you caring about your significant other because HE’S WEARING YOUR MAN’S SLIPPERS BUT TRIGGA DON’T CARE.

ugh.

This song is terrible with how real it is because there are people who really don’t give two shits about the side piece wearing the main piece’s things.

Also real catchy.

Track 6 Dead Wrong feat Ty Dolla $ign

All of these songs about hoes and clubs being disrespectful. Who hurt you Trey?

But the hoes gonna do what they want

Trey’s done a fantastic job of know where his strengths are and the production so far has really been complimentary to that ‘pre club, pre game’ crowd. Features have been solid so far.

Also, this is the hickey portion of the sexing theoretically happening to this album.

Track 7 All We Do

Welcome to the creep part of the album. Elastic snaps, slow delivery high snap snares. This is basically a slow mo video.

1:20 All we do is fuck drink and sleep.

I’m clearly in the wrong line of work.

Actually shocked that the bestie Drake isn’t on this track, this literally all he talks about.

All we do is let the hook repeat too often tho.

Track 8 Foreign Remix feat Justin Bieber

I want to skip this so badly…

:30 Dominican Puerto Rican yea they do it for me. *justin beieber

I WANT TO LIGHT MYSELF ON FIRE.

couldn’t do it. Gotta skip and the features were really good right until this happened. JESUS BE ANTI BACTERIAL GEL.

Track 9 Late Night feat Juicy J

Mike Will Made It production.

We’re telling time with more trap music and late night booty calls, which are the only ones anyone is interested in. If you’re calling for brunch sex, please ask elsewhere. Like the girlfriend you’re cheating on with the late night jump off.

At this point you’ve probably chilled a bit and are getting snacks but run back because Juicy J is on.

2:30 SHE RATCHET DIRTY DIANA. 

Juicy J has been incredible with the pop culture references. People have actually had to explain the Jeffery Dahmer line in Dark Horse.

Track 10 SmartPhones

Starts with the buzz from a phone on a flat surface that makes you look for your own phone to make sure it’s not the bae…because you’re out cheating remember?

This is the track that makes you remember that cheating and drinking is bad so you want to say sorry and you find the right words using a Trey Songz song vs a say…Robin Thicke. You also will leave the lyrics to this on a FB status.

1:45 So if she heard it all. I’m all out of love tonight. I could say it was a joke but who am I kidding she ain’t slow.

He’s giving me Usher circa “Confessions” feelings right now.

Now I’m gonna say whatever it takes.

time is not on our side cause she’s waving goodbye goodbye

Smartphones dumb shit

Track 11 Yes, No Maybe

We’ve hit the part of the album where all that Mr Steal Your Girl’ing has gotten you caught in the feels and she’s going out and doing all that Ms. Steal Your Man thing that hoes do.

This is the song that’s about the fact that fidelity is difficult and people let each other be hoes while they hope they can get it out of their system just so they can get married but we all know the old saying, can’t make a ho a housewife but good luck with that

Dragged on too long.

Track 12 Y.A.S

Slow piano over trap snare.

:49 Guess I got used to hearing whatever I wanted to hear

Guess I got used to feeling like you were supposed to give it here

She ain’t got nothing good to say so she ain’t saying nothin.

Lot of dudes not listening to their ladies.

Y.A.S is an acronym for You Aint Shit.

THIS IS GENIUS.

This is the dress down track because she’s found the dude that’s actually not Trey (it’s actually Usher) and he’s much better. The butthurt sincerity is real and the track has taken a hilarious dramatic piano jab and it’s bordering into R.Kelly storytelling theatrics.

Track 13 Change Your Mind

The cute pop track that gets buried at the bottom of these albums because you don’t want to be THAT soft dude but the lady has to know you cuddle and wear matching Snuggies while watching Netflix. It’s 90s pop snap that someone young would’ve done to break into the scene.

Change my mind Trey, g’head

 

Track 14 What’s Best For You

The break up song.

Always buried at the end of the album after all the hoe-ing is done. There’s a sincerity in his delivery that really makes him stand out vocally. Again, another vintage sounding track with well produced layering and approach that kinda makes up for all the drinking we just did.

In case you’re keeping score, this is the part where the making out has stopped and you’re kinda in that cuddle mode.

Track 15 Love Around The World

We’re back to finding all the girls we met in the “Foreign” track because the passport is missing and can’t get back to the bae without it so we have to treat this like the Hangover and retrace our steps with makin love with all the ladies in the cities we’ve been and dig around the couch cushions for that passport.

I’ve made LOoooooove all around the world.

Pitbull better watch his back…Mr. Steal Your Girl might be Mr. Worldwide.

Track 16 I Know (Can’t Get It Back)

Violins and synths…this should be good.

:20 I never had time for you

This is why you went on your international plow festival?!

1:00 I’ve been living my life in these clubs

but but…you made me change my mind!!

These hoes ain’t loyal.

The violin loop is just the most right now.

Track 17 Mr. Steal Your Girl

We’ve reached the sensual part of the album where now we’ve learned that he’s not going to get back with the other girl so here we are about to do some nekkid stuffs because let’s face it, all that’s why  pressed play on this album. KAY?

I’m glad we got to that point.

1:50 Let your man know that Mr. Steal Your Girl is back

I didn’t doubt it.

Overall, Trigga is one of those albums that you know Songz goes into the studio intending to deliver the goods…musically, boning is optional. It’s the album you listen to when you’re feeling a type of way (horny) and it may not hold up for overall listening a year from now simply because the material is almost a retread of his older work. Vocally he’s in his element and production wise he definitely succeeds in challenging the new school or urban r&b hierarchy since the seat seems to be vacated. A few tracks drag but they’re more for the DJs who will definitely use these tracks in the club…