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Messages - Dincrest

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1
Ever Forthright's self-titled album is still my absolute favorite album of this decade, but I only recently spent the 3 bucks on Bandcamp to buy the instrumental version of the album, and it is absolutely mind-melting.  I love Chris Baretto's dynamic vocals with the throaty growls and soaring clean singing, but hearing the songs instrumentally really allowed me to pick out interesting nuances.  I always heard something new whenever I listened to the regular album, but the instrumental version of the album gives me even more cool new things to pick out. 

https://everforthright.bandcamp.com/album/ever-forthright-instrumental

2
General Discussions / Re: Whats the haps?
« on: September 11, 2018, 07:10:40 AM »
Arguments over "objective" vs "subjective" are seldom productive.  I'm of the belief that art can have objective qualities, but that it's pointless to claim that those qualities mean you must appreciate it.  The subjective aspect is simply more important.

I like this.  Great way of putting it. 

I also started tangentially thinking of why and how we each approach reading the way we do.  For example, my aunt is a retired geriatric psychiatrist (who still does some consulting at her hospital).  Because her job was so mentally taxing and draining, she never wanted to read anything too cerebral.  She just wanted to let her brain decompress.  Hence why her bookshelf has lots of trashy novels that you wouldn't expect a learned person to have.  I don't claim that my job is as mentally taxing as that, but working in special education is psychologically draining in its own right.  So that's probably why I sometimes enjoy the more schlocky/pulpy and less cerebral comics, manga, novels, games, anime, etc.

3
General Discussions / Re: Whats the haps?
« on: September 10, 2018, 09:27:17 PM »
And I'll admit, after learning about some of Frank Miller's militantly prejudiced sociopolitical views, I sold my copy of Batman: The Dark Knight Returns.  Despite it being an iconic graphic novel, my visceral gut feeling was that I didn't want a book in my house created by someone who would probably not welcome brown people into his. 

Speaking of books, I've recently had people try to convince me that there are objectively "good" and "bad" books.  I think that's rubbish.  Not everything can be measured with a ruler and beauty is always in the eye of the beholder.  One person's pulp is another person's literature.  If the purpose of "art" (and I consider books to be the art of writing) is to inspire, it's important to realize that not everyone takes inspiration from the same sources. 

There are books hailed as masterpieces that I found insufferably painful to read and books regarded as pulp or trash that thoroughly engrossed me.  If you were to make me choose between a literary masterwork like The Scarlet Letter and a pulp novel like one of Ian Fleming's James Bond novels, I would pick James Bond because that's closer to what I'd enjoy reading.  I love to read, but don't get all that much time to read for pleasure, so I prefer to use my precious free time to read what I like.  I read for my own satisfaction, not to impress snooty literati. 

4
General Discussions / Re: Whats the haps?
« on: September 10, 2018, 10:51:30 AM »
@Arvis - No, it was actually stemmed from a discussion I was having with some studio musicians I was working with the weekend before.  I was more thinking about this: http://www.rpgfan.com/boards/index.php?topic=8301.msg374566;topicseen#msg374566 (tl;dr- I liked a band when I was younger, I met the frontman at a festival, he was a complete tool, now I can't listen to his music any more without gagging.) 

I was also thinking about Jaco Pastorius from Weather Report, since our recording engineer is also an accomplished bassist and Jaco came up in our discussion.  Jaco is a god among bassists.  Bassists to this day are still trying to cop his licks and failing miserably.  Jaco was a revolutionary and I probably wouldn't be a bass player if Jaco hadn't revolutionized bass guitar playing. However, he was a raging asshole narcissist.  Sure "it ain't bragging if you can back it up" and he always backed it up, but I can't hero-worship a musician who's a dickhead.  Before Jaco played bass in Weather Report, their bassist was Alphonso Johnson.  Not only is Alphonso one of the finest bass players alive right now, but he is a warm and humble person despite being such an accomplished innovator himself.  My bass teacher introduced me to him when I was 15 and just barely starting out.  That Alphonso was willing to take the time out to chat with a wet-behind-the-ears kid like me about life and music inspired me to both be a better musician and be a better person.  I swore from that day on that if I ever got to his kind of level, I would want to make any kid who met me feel the same way he made me feel.  I'll never forget this one night after a Kryovax show when a kid came up to me all excited and said, "You were awesome!  I always wanted to learn guitar and start a band, but after seeing you, I want to play bass!" 

Regarding Sugiyama specifically, while I do think he's the worst kind of Old Man (being a war crime denying right-wingnut history revisionist and all) I never liked his music in the first place.  Ergo, I don't feel that emotionally shattering "my idol's fall from grace" type thing at all regarding him.  Sugiyama is like those bands I've seen or played shows with who are incredibly skilled at their instruments, play complex patterns effortlessly, and perform with studio level tightness... but I can't remember any of their songs.  In terms of music alone, I do think Sugiyama is overrated but I don't think he's a hack the way I think Motoi Sakuraba is nor an overrated hack the way I think Hitoshi Sakimoto is. 

Truth be told, I've never gotten on with the Dragon Quest series, period.  Dragon Quest is a series I should theoretically adore, but try as I might I could never get into it.  I've played a handful of games including the famed VIII, and though I agree that VIII is one of the finest JRPGs out there, I simply did not vibe with it at all.  It was like being on a date with a great girl but the chemistry wasn't there.  The only Dragon Quest game I enjoyed was Rocket Slime.  That game was super fun!


5
I watched Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them today.  I enjoyed it as a popcorn flick.  I was more interested in seeing it, because I want to see the sequel Fantastic Beasts: Crimes of Grindenwold.  I think Jude Law is pretty cool and I want to see his portrayal as young Dumbledore.   

Anyway, the plot of Where to Find Them  was pretty cliche and progression felt patchy at times, but the visual design was creative (particularly
Spoiler: show
Newt's pocket dimension
).  It stoked my imagination the way the Harry Potter films do and I liked that it was more about adult wizards on an adventure rather than kid wizards.  However, some of the "romantic" interactions came off as adults acting like awkward teens.  I also think that some thematic elements that were barely a blip on the radar and heavily glossed over could be expanded upon to create more grown-up lore for J.K. Rowling's wizarding world.  For example, in examining the way Arthur Weasley and Queenie view muggles/no-majs... both are clearly fascinated by them/us, but how much of their muggle/no-maj enthusiasm is fetishism?

Speaking of expanding J.K. Rowling's world, I hope that Rowling realizes that America is a BIG country (at least 10 states are bigger than the UK) and every region is wildly unique. I hope that the America based magical school Queenie briefly mentions in the film is not the only school of its kind in America.  America is vast and a veritable mosaic of cultures, so it would make sense to me that there would/should be more than just one magical school in this country. 

If you look at Native American mysticism, different tribes have their own unique views, lore, practices, mythologies, traditions, etc. because of their varied and widespread geography.  We typically associate peyote and going on "vision quests" after taking it as something Native American tribes did, but that's limited to tribes who lived in the more southwestern desert regions where peyote grows, since peyote is a cactus.  And then when looking at the influences brought over from abroad, you get unique regional mysticisms like Louisiana voodoo that's an amalgamation of several traditions from the African diaspora.  Leaving the mainland, there are the Inuit traditions in Alaska and the Polynesian ones in Hawaii.  There's also magical creatures.  Folks who grew up in New Jersey would probably be familiar with the Jersey Devil and the Red Lion.  However, those who grew up in the southwest or Puerto Rico would be more familiar with chupacabras. 

6
General Discussions / Re: Whats the haps?
« on: September 08, 2018, 08:30:53 AM »
The moment a baby's poopy diaper stinks to the high heavens is the moment it stops being cute.  Either that, or the moment babies learn the word "no!" is when they stop being cute. 

As for haps, no major haps but I'm thinking about stuff.  Like does the nature of the person who made a craft affect how much you like the craft?  For example, do you like a band's music less if the people in the band are douchey? 

7
General Discussions / Re: Whats the haps?
« on: September 07, 2018, 06:55:08 PM »
People often look at me like some sort of 2 headed alien because I'm 40, but I'm not married, I don't have kids, am not in a relationship and do not want to be in one.  I simply prefer to live my life on my own terms.  I feel lacking in nothing and do not wish to disturb my pattern of life.  And it seems to be a trend in my family that a lot of the 30-something men of marriageable age simply don't desire to marry and have "dat life."  What's funny is that the grandma generation are the ones who are cool with folks like me not wanting to marry.  Whereas it's people my age or younger who always say stuff like, "You're a handsome dude.  Why aren't you married yet?" 

8
Brush and Quill / Re: Book Thread Continued
« on: September 04, 2018, 06:12:29 PM »
I tried reading In the Name of the Wind due to all the praise it got, but I just couldn't get into it.  I was not a fan of the protagonist at all. 

I'm about 6 chapters into Orchestra of Treacheries and am liking it a lot.  Yeah the series has its flaws, but I'm having a great time with it.  Chess pieces are moving, major and minor players are all trying to outfox each other in this realm's game of thrones.  In Game of Thrones (literally), Cersei Lannister says that when you play the game of thrones, you either win or your die.  There is no middle ground.  There's a new character who definitely has me intrigued.  I like her thought about how self-important men vying for power get so blinded by their arrogance that their plans always have the fatal flaw of relying on the opposition being stupid.  I also like that though things are getting set up, it doesn't feel like there's a lull in the action and characters are just sitting around doing nothing.

9
Brush and Quill / Re: Book Thread Continued
« on: September 01, 2018, 08:35:33 PM »
A couple of chapters into Orchestra of Treacheries and liking it.  It seems like chess pieces are being moved around, but it doesn't feel like characters are just sitting around doing nothing. 

On another note, anyone here members of Pottermore?  I decided to make a Pottermore account on a whim.  Pottermore sorted me into Ravenclaw.  Every Sorting Hat quiz I've taken either puts me in Hufflepuff or Ravenclaw, but though I think I'm a better fit in Hufflepuff, I think Ravenclaw would challenge me in a good way.

I also found my Patronus.  It's a Siberian Cat.  At first I was iffy about that choice since I'm more of a dog person and might be mildly allergic to cats.  However, the more I read about Siberian Cats, the more I can dig them.  They apparently have more doglike personalities and their saliva produces less of the compound that triggers allergies, making them a viable choice for people like me.  And looking back at the Moon Nuzlocke I chronicled for RPGFan, my Litten/Torracat (named Bam Bigelow) was an absolute warrior.  So perhaps my Patronus is he: http://www.rpgfan.com/features/Pokemon_Moon_Nuzlocke_Challenge/index.html
I could also see it being like Reginald in vol. 3 of Michael Alan Nelson's Hexed: The Harlot and the Thief comic series.  Hexed= my favorite comic series.

I've heard that a LOT of people were horribly dissatisfied with their Pottermore Patronuses.  I was a bit iffy on mine, but the more I think about it, the more I realize that as long as it protects me from Dementors, my Patronus could be a runty goldfish for all I care. 
 

10
General Discussions / Re: Whats the haps?
« on: August 29, 2018, 06:14:31 PM »
Teacher in-service day today.  I'll miss the free time I had during the summer, but the children need to be taught and summer break's left my bank account a tad lean.  (hashtag teacherproblems).  Still, I'm happy that I'm paired back up with the student I was a 1:1 with last year and my salary's been boosted a little bit.  Good, because I need to save my pennies for house improvements.  I love being a homeowner (I bought my first house back in January so I've been pretty skint much of the year), but the house is an ongoing project. 

11
General Discussions / Re: Whats the haps?
« on: August 27, 2018, 05:41:57 PM »
Haps: After weeks of grumpy frustration, I'm so glad the tendinitis in my right elbow is healing up, so I can rebuild to lifting heavier again.  I brought it upon myself overdoing heavy curls, so I have no one to grumble at but myself. 

And you know how old-school muscle gyms where bodybuilders and powerlifters train have those "hashtag fitness goals" posters of Arnold Schwarzenegger on the walls?  I would put a poster of Sam Mikulak on the wall as a "hashtag fitness goals" thing.  https://static.gofugyourself.com/uploads/2016/08/GettyImages-586840400-614x900.jpg  Seriously, what dude wouldn't want to be swole like that?  It's crazy how buff male gymnasts are.  They look like comic book superheroes.     

12
2018 has been a STELLAR year for music.  New albums by Rivers of Nihil, Graveshadow, Apophys, Dream State, Strychnia, La Armada, Poem, Skeletonwitch, and more have all been wonderful.

Adding to that growing list, I just caught wind of this Swedish metal band called Hexed who released their debut album "Netherworld" this year.  Loving it as my album of the moment: https://vicisolumrecords.com/album/netherworld

13
Single-Player RPGs / Re: Grandia 1 and 2 are coming to the Switch
« on: August 24, 2018, 08:31:52 PM »
So there is hope of the burly knight sounding knightly and not like some dude with a stuffy nose.

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Single-Player RPGs / Re: Grandia 1 and 2 are coming to the Switch
« on: August 23, 2018, 06:01:48 AM »
Analagous situation:

Castlevania: Symphony of the Night's voice acting:  Playstation original vs PSP redux (with Dracula X Chronicles)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eLIQCrVUrZU

Which do you prefer?

For me,
Spoiler: show
 original Alucard definitely had the superior voice to new Alucard and both had equivalent acting.  Both Richters were lousy, but old Richter was memorably cheesy.  Original Maria sounded too mature and new Maria sounded too "little girl."  Both Draculas were menacing, but I prefer new Dracula because he had more aristocratic smoothness along with the menace.

Partially because of nostalgia, I kinda prefer the old "so bad it's good" voice acting over the new voice acting, which is competent yet very plain vanilla and not at all memorable.


Still, Grandia 1's voice acting, stuffy nosed knight and all, is gold compared to the trainwreck that is 2008's Chaos Wars: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bangt7d9vGA

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Single-Player RPGs / Re: Grandia 1 and 2 are coming to the Switch
« on: August 22, 2018, 01:55:08 PM »
I don't think there's any argument that the Grandia series has one of the best turn-based battle systems in the genre.  I also think there's little argument that the series has some of the coolest battle and boss music themes. 

Still, Grandia 1's localization has a TON of room for improvement. 

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