Kitties in mirrors are not as large as they appear.
Kitties in mirrors are not as large as they appear.
!END OF SUMMER SALE!
Thanks a bunch for those commissions I got this Summer to help me make the move from Seattle to Fort Collins, and thanks to all of you that have supported my work over the years.
I figured I’d take some more sexy photos with my paintings and let ya’ll know that I’m having an end of Summer sale. If you claim one before the first day of Fall I’ll give you $100 off the price of any of these pieces.
First come first serve.
Let your ol’ boy Jacob Wayne know if you’re interested!
@ Fort Collins, Colorado
“Looking For Love”
“Fear Inoculum” by TOOL
“I feel like this is [about] wisdom through age, through experience. Hopefully through aging you find wisdom in some of the things you’ve encountered. Learning from your mistakes, learning from your successes. So if anything is a broad stroke of this album, it would be embracing where we are right now, acknowledging where we’ve come from and some of the things we’ve grown through.” – Maynard James Keenan
Back in 2006 I heard a new Tool song, I didn’t really care for it. I vaguely remember having it shown to me by one of my good friends and fellow musician who loved the band. “It kind of sounds like Tool trying to sound like Tool”. To be fair I’d never given them a fair listen and I was ready to take the piss.
I was barely out of High School and still caught up in the competitive nature of the music scene in those days. “That band isn’t as Metal as this band!”, “They’re not really punk!”, “There’s not enough screaming on the new album!”… The only thing we seemed to be able to agree on was that Lars Ulrich was undesirable to have as your drummer.
So when it came to Tool they just commanded a weird respect from their fans and I found it to be a bit pretentious. Now I can look back and remember I liked bands that didn’t seem to get any respect so I was probably just hurt and lashing out.
Eventually the full album came out and I didn’t think too much of it. Although there were songs that started to intrigue me. I was in my first band not too long after and Tool was a major influence on 2 of the 3 members. I wasn’t quite there yet but gaining some respect for the new album as well as some older material. The members of my first band “Nadia Pero” gave me a crash course in music that I’ll be eternally grateful for. Through playing our own songs and really picking them apart and messing with timing I just naturally started to appreciate Tool more. I still hadn’t quite wrapped my head around this Maynard character.
I then started to pick up the pace on painting, on college, on relationships, on weird hook ups, on drunken “woah is me” moments, on life in general.
It took Maynard in “A Perfect Circle” to finally click with what he does as an artist and singer. After that I just couldn’t get enough.
In 2010 I left the U.S. for the first time and spent a Summer teaching English in Taiwan. One of my most cherished memories is listening to “Lateralus” on my beat up Ipod while wandering down small twisty streets in Taoyuan. That is when Tool became something more for me. Yes, to put it simply they are a prog rock pseudo-metal band from the 90s made up of 4 dudes looking to rock out. For lack of any other way to describe it I just found that they and I were swimming through life on a similar wave length. It felt like a distant brotherhood and they inspired me to do my own communicating and creating. There’s something truly meditative about their approach that brings me peace of mind.
Whether I show it much or not I can be a deeply anxious person, I can have a very melancholy outlook on things and sometimes it’s hard to want to participate in society. Tool and their music is one of the few things that just about anytime you throw it own it can calm me down and recalibrate my outlook. I’ll always be grateful for that.
So I only got to listen to this new record, “Fear Inoculum” one day out of the month of August but it was a clear choice for my album of the month.
It was a beautiful reflection on times gone by, on changes I’ve gone through, on the beautiful differences of the here and now. It reminded me to keep going and accept that time itself is bearing down on us all.
For me it reminded me to enjoy my existence, to not fear that which is out of my control or inevitable. Only that I should be patient and know that if you can continue to act, powerful things can and will happen.
I’ve been riding 3 full listens of the album. I love that I have a new album to take my time with and dissect for the years to come.
The wait is over, we made it.
Back at it, figured I’d start things off with a tribute to the late great Grumpy Cat.
I remember I watched this movie at some point during college when I would randomly have a borrowed stack of DVDs and a few movie files on my computer. I know I respected the movie then but I wouldn’t say I enjoyed it very much. Then again I was in my twenties and probably more into dick and fart joke movies. I would kind of half watch as I painted and smoked weed and just generally kept reminding myself, “This is that watergate movie, with Redford and Hoffman”. I knew the movie was important, I was growing to love Political thrillers and procedural dramas, and I was going through a Hoffman phase since I had just watched his “Inside the Actor’s Studio”. But the film just pwent in one ear and out the other a bit.
Years later when it would pop up as an option to watch I’d say to myself “Oooo, I should watch that again” but I kept passing it up.
I’m glad I waited until this evening to watch it again. I’ll spare you any political preaching but if you read this review around the time I post it, I think you’d agree that we live in some truly fascinating and unprecedented times in terms of presidential politics and how it relates to obstruction of justice and illegal activities.
Perhaps since this sort of thing is all I usually hear in the news these days this film just seemed to be vibrating with a big imaginary neon sign above the poster image, saying “Now it’s time to watch me.”
I was way more engaged this time around and I think I know exactly why I might have zoned out the first time. This classic is perhaps the zenith of the “Procedural Drama” genre, not because it’s intense, or incredibly thrilling. It’s that absolutely everything is painstakingly kept matter of fact.
The film is ominous and has grandeur and somehow still remains understated. The camera work isn’t flashy but it has some truly beautiful shots that telegraph to your eyeballs that what you’re watching is important. The acting is subtle and this makes it so every raised eyebrow, darting eye, or slacked jaw carries weight. The score is almost nonexistent so it allows you to feel like you’re in these meetings and discussions at the Washington Post as they pour over notes and puzzle pieces. Every phone conversation is a mystery box that the protagonists slowly lock pick with their questions. The cuts are quick and every scene is part of this tremendous investigative piece. The dialogue is so natural and characters often talk over one another just as we do in reality rather than waiting for their turn to deliver lines.
After watching this slow masterful burn I now can think back to other political thrillers and procedurals and realize how much emotional manipulation is happening in those films. The score leads you towards how you’re supposed to feel. The protagonist is up against some truly vile characters and they’re just waiting to explode with witty one liners or an epic speech about justice. Scenes happen that are there for a laugh or unnecessary twist that doesn’t truly help the story. Perhaps the studio thought the viewer would lose interest because they’re some college kid smoking weed and tuning out because they didn’t hear a dick or fart joke in the last 20 minutes. I love those types of films just as much as the next person but thinking on those films truly highlights how special “All the Presidents Men” is in comparison, and how after I grew out of my twenties why it was important to view it with a more aged perspective. It makes me realize the irony that politics and journalism today are more like those dick and fart joke movies, filled with needless twists to the plot and laughs,.. Far too many laughs that are the only guard against the fear that we just don’t have what it takes to get to the truth that’s buried under all the bullshit.
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As a kid growing up in the 90s, the intro really spoke to me immediately. The screen was filled to the brim with things I remember vividly and things not so vividly but it was striking to to notice just how easy it was to sum up this decade visually. I’m remember it being such a jumble when I turned 14 in 2000. Back then it was easy to see an era captured in film and notice it as either being the 80s or 70s but the main themes of the 90s hadn’t coagulated yet for me. Now it seems almost too easy. Now as I’ve mentioned in other reviews I grew up in Logan, Utah and long story short that is a very religious little mountain town. We were not as exposed to as much as those in the big cities but it would be unfair to assume we were completely out of the loop. My friends and I had our older brothers and sisters that were as Mormon as you could imagine but we also had our siblings who were caught up in the weed and drink and calling each other “fags” or “gay” for saying something as simple as “thank you”.
These are both my farewell pieces to Seattle, I’ll keep the hows and whys to myself and people who are interested to know more. I’m getting simultaneously excited and anxious as this move approaches but most importantly it feels right. It’ll be interesting to start fresh in a new place which I hope will lead to more interesting art.
“All changes, even the most longed for, have their melancholy; for what we leave behind us is a part of ourselves; we must die to one life before we can enter another.” -Anatole France