Out now on Checkers Records Collective, the new LP by JCM, "The Fall of Bryan Metro".

Listen To This Now!!!!

Wednesday, November 27, 2019

A Jax'd up Top 100 Local Songs of 2019 List

*Since this piece is a throwback of my roasting of all things local and not fiction, pop culture, or social commentary. I have to reiterate the Lavender Blog policy that if anything is found offensive please contact me and I will remove it with an apology. Enjoy.

Hey all, Metro here. Don't get too excited. I did not actually compile a list of my favorite local songs from the Detroit area this year. Even as the preeminent local journalist I know my limits. It would have taken too long to find even 25 songs. Plus, I'm not the biggest follower of music and don't get out much because of the threats of physical violence from A.M (punching me out at Java Hutt), and death threats from Mother Love (a dumpster would be chilly this time of year). I don't mean to disappoint but keep hanging in there! In addition, I have disabled all the artificial lighting from the bedroom office (which Outrageous Dave calls "The Crypt") and that affects my hours.

Before we get to my review of someone else's Top 100 Local songs of 2019 I want to go on a short tangent. Years ago I used to like, well maybe tolerate, local act Flint Eastwood's stuff. I think my main turnoff was the silly use of someone else's name to get attention to an otherwise serviceable, yet generic, act, very much like Dale Earnhardt Jr Jr did and JCM did with Jesus. Eventually, fat boy Epstein realized the gimmick ran its course (pun intended) and had run out of gas (pun questionable) and changed the band's name to just Jr Jr and with that, people stopped caring. So now that the gimmick of the Flint Eastwood name has run its course, the artist has rebranded herself (no offense) as Jax Anderson which may be her real name, or may be one of the American Gladiators. What it actually is is an attempt to jump on the identity politics bandwagon which has worked so well for the Ghostbusters, Terminator, and Charlie's Angels franchises. I don't intend to be mean against anybody who isn't like me. I don't care. When it comes to movies, music, art in general, I just don't want to be talked down to or lectured. I just want to be entertained, not bored. I can form my own worldview on my own thank ya sai. What I don't want is somebody playing the topic of the year(s) for personal gain. Jax Eastwood's angle is one of "healing" but seems disingenuous because of the timing. Here is the clip of the single.


The chorus of "I'm alone" is hilarious because she (no offense again) has been given every opportunity to break through (hasn't really happened) and has toured all over the US and is generally widely embraced by those who enjoy her (no offense) art which is great cool and fantastic. Now that identity politics have come into vogue they are going with that angle, and life has become intolerable because of this or that despite, once again, touring the country and beyond and being widely accepted by her (no offense) fan-base.. But the bottom line is, the song sucks and the video is worse. Pandering script blurbs talking down to people like an unironic Stuart Smalley parody. Spare me. It comes off as insincere instead of inspiring. Just my take (those are still legal right?). Here's another link of rhetoric:     Pander pander pander

Okay, lets get to the Top 100 Local Songs list. I did not make a list. However, Jeff Milo did. He (no offense) even included an embed that has a 25 second preview of EACH song, which is actually pretty cool and convenient since 25 seconds is usually all I can take with most local music. I rarely post links (aside from the ones above), but I will for this. It will open in another window so you can follow along with my blurbs on each song.    Top 100 of 2019

I know some may think that judging a song by only 25 seconds may seem unfair. Take The Beatles' "Happiness is a Warm Gun" or "You Never Give Me Your Money", or The Who's "A Quick One", all personal favorites, but cannot be appreciated in just 25 seconds. Oh, who am I kidding? I'm guessing I can grab an opinion on every one of these songs in 25 seconds. I do support the local scene (in my own, sometimes cruel, way), so if you happen to dig any of these you can catch the whole song on Spotify. Also, this is not a hit job on one person's opinion. Everyone has the right to say what they want (that's still legal right?). I admit I was curious to see what 100 local acts had to offer in 2019 and appreciate Milo's effort in compiling them. So instead, this is a hit job on 100 local acts. And I really stress this: Though some of my takes may be sour or even mean ("boring awful, lame") that may cause a reader to look the group up as to why, but then really dig their stuff, thus generating a new fan. What I'm saying is any exposure is good exposure unless its indecent. I'm not sure if his list is an actual ranking or just numbers to organize them. Let me put my journalism hat on and away we go.....

1. "The Void and Me"- James Linck- I lasted 3 seconds of a 25 second preview. Everything awful about music today. I puked!
2. "Godshe"- Sisters of Sunshine Vapor- Bias alert. I like this act and they always deliver. However, the main riff is a total rip off of a JCM riff that guitarist Born Evil probably ripped off from someone else.
3. "Apples & Oranges"- Drinkard Sisters- Participation award worthy country twang. I find it ironic that their vocals have little weight to them.
4. "My Own God"- Girl Fight- I liked the energy, but ultimately it came off as trying too hard.
5. "Doesn't Matter Why"- Splitters- Annoying and forgettable.
6. "Phantom Limb"- Messenger Birds- My nickname in college! The song was good though. Our first Metro Certified cut!
7. "Who Would Want This"- The Blueflowers. Marcie's theme song. Kidding! I actually liked this. Very moody. Whoa, two in a row!
8. "Glow"- Dani Darling- I'm not sure if this is that geezer Danny Dustrod or somebody else. I think its somebody else. Either way....boring.
9. "Rehab"- Ohtis- Unoffensive twee twang. I thought this would be a hip hop track.
10. "Cruise Control"- Martez Claybren- Worse than Speed 2 (couldn't resist). Boring hip hop.
11. "A Broken Person's Game"- Primer- Florence and the Machine on Line 1!
12. "Me I Fall"- River Spirit- Pretty much unlistenable.
13. "Wishes"- Atmig- Okay I guess. The male vocalist wishes it was 2009 and he was in Interpol. Who comes up with these fucking band names?
14. "The Cover of Night"- Palaces- "Oh hey, lets be The Smiths! Great idea, but needs more New Order." Spare me.
15. "Right Back To You"- Pharsyde- Boring. Silly.
16. "Sue"- Paint Thinner- I didn't have a problem with this.
17. "Subsurface"- Adult- Pathetic.
18. "Smokers Rag"- Olivia Mainville- I really enjoyed this. It was catchy and had personality and the singer could actually sing.
19. "The Evil Behind the Eyes"- Steve Greene- I dug this one too. The 25 seconds I heard had a John Carpenter vibe to it.
20. "Sunlight"- Ronny Tibbs- I lasted 4 seconds. Very annoying voice. Some of his stuff is decent but this gave me a Migraine.
21. "Cloud"- Honey Monsoon- Generic dance stuff. The singer (Honey?) sounded like an out of breath Debbie Harry.
22. "Limbo"- Steffanie Christian- Boring.
23. "Puncture"- Matthew Milia- So annoying. Does anybody go out of their way to listen to this?
24. "This is How it Goes"- Tammy Lakkis- More generic dance, but lyric writing at its finest, but not really.
25. "Over Open Water"- Proton Candy- Dull. We are at the quarter mark and the majority of the acts thus far have female vocalists. Not a complaint at all but just an ironic observation.
26. "Over and Over"- The Go Rounds- Embarrassing.
27. "Worthless Chorus"- Bars of Gold- These geezers are still around? Worthless song.
28. "Dolphins"- Eddie Logix- You had 25 seconds to sell me on a 3 minute song and nothing happened. Fuck you Eddie.
29. "Eye of the Storm"- Virginia Violet & the Rays- Pretty good song. Great chord changes. Approve.
30. "I'd Rather Just Die"- These Are My Ghosts- See the song title, but spare the wellness checks. This is satire.
31. "Train of Thought"- Noveliss- Pretty decent hip hop.
32. "Kicks"- Pato y Pato- Boring midi music.
33. "Hit Me Now"- Clear Soul Forces- Decent hip hop. A bit generic.
34. "Parkways"- Fred Thomas- Hey lets go for the Elvis Costello demographic!
35. "St. Adailbert"- Anna Burch- She has a beautiful voice. I did not Google search her so I can keep the fantasy alive.
36. "Method Man"- Stef Chura- God awful. Annoying.
37. "Maintain"- The Band Mint- Not my thing but I respect their effort.
38. "Slow Burn"- Joe Hertler- Boring.
39. "Friends in Low Places"- JR JR- By far the worst song on the list so far. I remember the fat one mean-mugging JCM at the DMA's one year.
40. "Everything Happens For A"- Honeybabe- I didn't have a problem with this. The music offset the generic lyrics.
41. "Circles"- Michigander- Lame.
42. "Because Piano"- His Name is Alive- Two minutes and 23 seconds of His Name is Wasting My Time.
43. "Nothing Stays the Same"- Annie Bacon- Well, except for the local music scene haha. Oh the song? It was okay. Harmless country with good vocals.
44. "Over Open Water"- Proton Candy- Bwahahahahahahahahahaha, he included the same song twice (previously #25 up above and check the official link). So does that mean it drops 19 spots on second listen? Is this an audition to write for the Metro Times? I should just stop my review right now because nothing will top this. You never disappoint Detroit. As for the song? Yeh, still dull as fuck.
45. "Summer Itch"- Minihorse- Good....if you have insomnia.
46. "Jean Grey"- Tunde Olaniran- Overcooked junk. That does not make me trans-phobic, queer-phobic, or race-phobic. It makes me a music journalist. I damn well nearly threw my back out writing that blurb.
47. "Cherry Granola"- Wang Vilma- This sounds like at least five other songs on this list. Music for the electric sauna.
48. "No Worries"- Nique Love Rhodes- Dull hip hop. Also a bit whiny. #cashme
49. "The Reunion"- Prude Boys- Generic rock.
50. "Don't Wanna Work"- John Kay & Who's To Say- Hey its Chanel's theme song!! #cashme The song itself was okay and harmless.
51. "Black Jesus"- Ilajige- Somehow I don't picture Jeff Milo rocking this. Participation award hip hop.
52. "She's in Parties"- Vazum- I actually like this act despite impersonating Bauhaus at every local Halloween wankfest and a member performing with the Charisma Vacuum known as George Morris. The song title is my favorite so far.
53. "Chop Suey"- Brother Son- Insufferable.
54. "Blue Doom"- Zilched- No problem at all. The benefits of a good hook.
55. "Breathe Easy"- Frankie- Dull twee singer.
56. "No Enemies"- Extra Arms-Divorced Ryan Allen has made the same song for over a decade and not in a good AC/DC kind of way. Cringe.
57. "Hell's Bathroom Floor"- Carmel Liburdi- Dull. The song/artist took longer to type.
58. "Mercury in Retrograde"- Rogue Satellites- Didn't do anything for me. Felt empty.
59. "Dream"- Leif Erikson- My favorite hip hop track on this list so far. Well written and performed.
60. "James Dean"- Valerie the Vulture- Metric wannabees. Should have written a song about adult film star James Deen.
61. "Tiffany Skies"- Bevlove- Okay female-fronted hip hop. She does have rocking bewbs though. Hey don't come after me man, she'd be the first to tell you.
62. "MCW"- Shigeto- Beyond generic jazz. I can totally picture Milo rocking to this.
63. "Under a Bad Sign"- Kickstand Band- Good lord, they're still around too?? Generic as always, but the gal is a doff.
64. "Charlie's Glasses"- The Doozers- Melodic, yet dull.
65. "Bottled"- Valid- Boring hip hop.
66. "Taking Us For Granted"- Float Here Forever- Did whoever write the lyrics actually graduate high school?
67. "For All and None"- Jake Riley- Pedestrian.
68. "If You Wanna Roll"- High Strung- Not their best effort. Revolver-era Beatles snoozer.
69. "Cures, Diseases"- Remnose- I usually enjoy their stuff, but this one didn't click with me.
70. "Wait"- Lucid Furs- I liked it. A female-fronted Wolfmother.
71. "Incredible Killer"- Marbrisa- I have no opinion.
72. "Poisonous"- Warhorses- I guess it was good but it bored the fuck out of me.
73. "Look Good"- Jack Oats- This was pretty good and worth a listen.
74. "Sacred Space"- Anne Erlewine- I'm sure she's a great person.
75. "Own the Day"- Dude- This post just added an hour to my day because of the nap I took with this.
76. "Shake"- Mollywop- Pure garbage.
77. "Home Inside"- Joseph Dugan- Boring. Ize bored.
78. "You Shouldn't Be Here"- Those Hounds- Stupid.
79. "Soopermensch"- Jo Rad Silver- I almost completely skipped this one based on the song title and artist name. Do NOT make the same mistake I did.
80. "Mira Alrededor"- Pancho Villa's Skull- These guys are good but this isn't their best.
81. "Head of Jets"- Alluvial Fans- Boring.
82. "Scared to Death"- Jax Anderson- Hahahaha, I was waiting for it. This sucks and I mean that in the most unironic...okay, I'll just stop now. To rephrase, I did not enjoy this song.
83. "Sequenza Di Mezzanotte"- Voyag3r- Okay, this one actually sucks cock.
84. "Approaching Land"- Mister and others- Okay hip hop and harmless.
85. "Rampage"- Bad Magnets- Good god let this list end.
86. "Spiders"- Bombastic Dream Pussy- Was intrigued by the band name and naturally disappointed. Bored. Lay off the lithium kids.
87. "I'm Not Sorry"- Louis Picasso- I, however, am very sorry for sitting through this song along with this list.
88. "The Right One"- Tears of a Martian- Boring, boring, boring.
89. "Toxic Masculinity"- Career Club- The vocals weren't bad but of course it can't be 2019 without a song called Toxic Masculinity.
90. "Swim"- Century Babes- Great lyrics twerps!
91. "Sunrise"- Nolan the Ninja- Sucked.
92. "She's Waiting For Me"- Devious Ones- Didn't hate it. Good guitar work.
93. "Feel Love"- The Scrappers- Decent stuff, but why does every band have to come up with a song title and give up on writing lyrics. There has to be about 15 songs on this list that just repeat the song title over boring music.  Okay tangent time....

In 2007/08 I wrote JCM's first single "1970's High Octane Death Race". Sure the title was an obvious eye-catcher, but to this day it is the best song I wrote. The lyrics are a deconstruction of the death of the American Dream which happened in the late 60's and 70's and the dark cloud hanging over ever since, a theme I revisited for JCM's final show last year (everything has been calculated). Here are the lyrics and compare them to the fluff we have seen thus far (We haven't even gotten to the Pulitzer Prize winning "Watupdoe"):

-"New York City on a blackout night, to me baby the time is just right (Son of Sam); Post-hippie LA love-in scene, even better for a monster like me (Manson family/Altamont). Can't you see your fate tonight! Dance your final dance, baby that's right.
Late summer Texas sunset, you ain't seen nothing like it; climbing to the top of the tower, now look at who has the power (the Charles Whitman shootings).
Germany is next on the tour (WW2 duhhh), after that I'll need more. Alabama is where its at with a free reign and a baseball bat (Selma and racial violence), Dublin I can lose my reigns watching all the flames I make (IRA). LA on the Sunset Strip good place to lose my grip (Zodiac/Night Stalker).
Death Race (x 4)- (The only instance of repetition).
Detroit city is in shambles just cuz I took a gamble; people lying on Woodward Ave, someone call the Republicans (Detroit riots and the Nixon years)."

Whew, a trip down memory lane. This won JCM a Detroit Music Award, and of course that's the joke and most think the music output (and most of the writing) are as well, and you might be right but I will put that against any of the twee, poppy, and most unfortunately, SAFE songs on this list. At this point I need to stress to separate the art from the artist. I wanted to do an audio tour of some of our worst, horrific "black eyes" with the narrator being Pure (Born) Evil, maybe even the Devil himself. Now I don't want to compare myself to the Rolling Stones or "Sympathy For the Devil" (or the Stooges; Hi there -jr), but I think it is a pretty good kissing cousin. Not everything has to be happy bleeps from a laptop or positive affirmations in a harmless shoegaze (or even worse, an Extra Arms) track. While those have their merits they also betray the audience because the world can be a very dark place and has been since the beginning. That's why I feel art should reflect all spectrums. That's why songs called "Feel Love" kind of fall flat. Aside from maybe Kayne (or some Eminem who has become a charter member of Trump Derangement Syndrome), there is no edge anymore in local (or national) art. It is all "safe". I guess you can go back to blaming The Beatles with "All You Need is Love" released the same year (1967) Manson formed his "family" and two years before the Manson murders and Altamont (1969). Well, holy shit. Now THAT was a tangent.  Lets get back to the list of Top 100 Local Songs of 2019....

94. "If You Ask"- Saajtak- Stupid.
95. "Watupdoe"- Sheefy McFly- This was embarrassingly awful. Should have stuck with the DeLorean.
96. "2 Faced"- Bad Fashion- Can we coin a new genre called Twerp Rock?
97. "You Come Back When Yo..."- Trev Tochnik- More of a decade too late Interpol zzz's.
98. "The Box"- Deadbeat Beat- School of Rock level songwriting and song.
99. "Hollow"- Kimball- I don't have a problem with this act. Saw them play at a fest (they play them all), but this one is pretty boring.
100. "Pocket Knives"- Shady Graves- Its fitting to close this list with just another borefest.

That's it! I'm taking another week off to regain some braincells from this torture. I have one more magnum opus left in me that will be posted next month: my top films of the past decade. Feel free to tear it, or this, apart on your own blog/site (oh wait, you don't have one), or for your convenience the comments section below. Bye bye, see you soon!

From the Iceman Commeth,
Bryan Metro

Tuesday, November 12, 2019

Weekend Review, Veterans Day, and the Chicken Sandwich Race War

"I have come to the conclusion that I cannot write without offending people."

That's not from me. That's from James Joyce, a writer slightly more accomplished than myself. That was written many decades ago (Joyce died in 1941) but couldn't be more true, even better, more relevant than today. I'm writing this post on Monday, Veterans Day, to be published Wednesday and yes I am in "essay mode" so if that's not your thing, I understand. I was attracted to the Joyce quote because it can be applied to any artist and also highlights that people don't actually Write anymore. Every Melody or Milo Det. News/Freep article is a recycled press release. I know I'm repeating myself from previous posts, but it is true. There are no opinions allowed anymore. In fact they are discouraged. Keep that in the back of your head as I will provide a first-hand example later (and make somebody famous). Everything is just an endless litany of links, memes, and reposts from people the poster probably has never met. Even if a person's opinion is questionable or flat out wrong I believe in a person's right to say it with the caveat being I also believe in a person who disagrees with said opinion's right to say why. Logical dialogue. Simple right? No, not anymore. The moment anybody disagrees with something they are "branded" a racist, sexist, whose opinion doesn't matter, even resulting in employment being contacted. I remember a year or so ago when I was trying to engage in a Logical Dialogue and a small group of people suggested that they contact my employer, North Central Positronics which makes me laugh to this day picturing these nitwits searching for a contact number for HR for a corporation that doesn't exist and is from a Stephen King novel. So on Veterans Day I promised myself to stay off the internet because I didn't want to find the angle people were complaining about. I ultimately failed in that promise and was relieved it wasn't as bad as I thought it would be (although, RIP Charles Rogers). However, I want to offer my sincere thank you and tip of the Dean Ambrose beanie to all who have, are,  or will serve to maintain our rights, including the right to offend people.

Lets start with my weekend review: There is none! Of course I could blame the Arctic Blast of cold weather or the sinus infection, but the reality is, nobody sold me on anything. However, I was still curious about how things went. Nothing. As predicted and expected, everybody is already moving on to the next under-attended show. Heaven forbid if any site actually has show reviews anymore.

Next up was the Don Cherry incident where the famous hockey announcer was fired for anti-immigrant comments. Were the comments ill-advised? Yes. Was the Veteran Poppy angle silly? Yes. Is it reason to fire him? Nahhhh. I believe his intention was to advocate for veterans and being 85 he went about it the wrong way. Am I making excuses? No. Should there have been punishment? Sure. A leave of absence followed by a public apology (this is 2019 after all), but their job? Nahhhh. Also, ironic is the fact that the majority calling for his termination on social media have never watched, nor will watch, a hockey game in their lives. For them, it was just the soup of the day.

Last up could be a topic on tomorrow's Good Morning America, which I have deemed with full-on hyperbole, "The Great 2019 Chicken Sandwich Race War". Go back and read that again. C'mon, one more time. This is what has been polluting my social media timeline this week. A fucking chicken sandwich. People on both sides of the counter are being triggered and even hospitalized because of fast food, specifically a Fucking Chicken Sandwich. The two incidents that were sent to me by Constant Readers who were frustrated by everything (but also didn't want to offend anyone, which I respect) both had the same narrative: Angry white person getting loud including using the "N word". Lets not sugarcoat it, they called the staff niggers. It was rude, belligerent, racist, reprehensible, and complete reason not to be served, and even warranted a call to the police. In summary, it was inexcusable and stupid and most definitely a $500 disorderly conduct misdemeanor. Both incidents resulted in violence in the parking lot including one being male on female assault (that fact not being brought up as much). You can find the clips online. I'm not posting them here.

I have been in the hospitality industry for over 15 years so I have respect for employees berated by jerk customers and what I call "professional complainers". This is the same respect I try to have for all public servants like the police, who despite some unfortunate bad apples, bust their ass to deal with situations like this. Imagine hearing, "Unit 434, we have an assault over a chicken sandwich." "Could you repeat that dispatch, an assault over a child situation?" "No 434, an assault over a chicken sandwich, a Fucking Chicken Sandwich Unit 434." Who knows, maybe it took a chicken sandwich to fully expose the seedy underbelly of racism. Or maybe like my great grandfather, Sigmund Metro said, "Sometimes a chicken sandwich is just a chicken sandwich." While I sympathize with the ordeals of the employee I also have to say that violence is not a solution for anything, and the clips I saw were just a tad over the top and just as inexcusable as their awful slurs. I can understand how somebody could feel jaded about going through things the right way assuming the police wouldn't do anything but now they're out of a job (or could be employee of the month, I dunno). I just feel violence, physical contact, was not needed, but rather served as a catharsis of years of racial discrimination or maybe just working at Popeye's for four months. Just this past weekend I asked for three crunchy tacos without cheese from Taco Bell as I was ravenous. After getting home I noticed they all had cheese. Did I go ballistic at the predominantly non-Hispanic staff? Nahhhhhh. I scraped the cheese off, ate two, and binged on leftover Halloween candy. You win some, you lose some. Deal with it, rock and roll. I in no way want to marginalize the black eye of racism in our country's history by comparing it to three tacos with cheese. I also didn't go online saying that evening's shift should be fired. I also didn't want to be assaulted. That was a joke, but if you haven't put together that this is a satire site by now you shouldn't be reading. Plus I've had enough death threats already because I offended somebody. Semi-related I got into a similar debate on a timeline where I had disagreements with the violence but supported the angst at the inappropriate behavior. I then complimented the Original Poster for not deleting the thread and even more not blocking anyone for having a slightly different take, calling it a win for Logical Dialogue. Here was a response:

As I alluded to earlier, opinions are not welcome anymore unless you agree with everyone. I couldn't believe this was actually posted, and still believe it was probably either copy and pasted or even saved for any time a response like this is needed. I was simply applauding the Original Poster (who is black, not that it matters) for allowing free discourse. And now I'm a "racist apologist". This is 2019. Also, to the now famous Berkley Browne, is "having it up to here" an excuse for "snapping"? That statement is among the most absurd yet hilarious yet scary statement I have seen in a while. So, "Oh man somebody made fun of my art project....again! Time to get a gun." or "I really hate Country music. Time to get a suite at Mandalay Bay." I doubt Brilliant Berkley has ever seen the film "Network" but I'm sure they would appreciate the irony.

I was having dinner with a friend at Flemings last week where he said that his wife was stuck in traffic coming home from work but that it wasn't because of the snow but because of the line stretching out at a Popeye's. The cynic in me immediately thought that a Fight Club had been set up and then dialed it back to think they were purposely using slow service to increase interest in their product, the same thing the Limelight nightclub did in 1996 New York City (my first foray into the city). We eventually agreed, and shared a high five, that it was unintentional slow service because they've always had slow service, although I have to concede that the slowest service around would be Steak and Shake. The fact is, I'm okay with that. I enjoy both establishments and don't mind waiting a bit for my food. The real warning is when the food arrives too soon. I eschew carry out or delivery because I like the experience of being at the venue, striking up a conversation with a fellow patron or employee, maybe about the NFL or the latest Patty Winters Show, an escape from the crap I see online every day that does nothing to galvanize me but instead deflates me. So we have come to this. The most positive person in the room is the guy writing the Lavender Blog. End days indeed. To close, my other real warning is don't bother being an artist (all mediums), consumer, patron, employee, employer, thinker, and even a foodie because in the end, you'll just end up offending somebody.

From the Iceman Commeth,
Bryan Metro

Thursday, November 7, 2019

The Return of the Weekend Preview

Hey all, Metro here with the return of the vintage Weekend Preview. I used to do these every week back in 20XX recommending, or making fun of, events happening. I honestly looked all over social media and really didn't find anything of interest, but I could be blocked by everybody. If I missed your event please contact me and I will update this post.

*Post Update- Here is an event for fans of Twin Peaks (not the restaurant with all the doff). Of course the movie is being shown twice today with actor Ray Wise in attendance (Sheryl Lee cancelled due to the dreaded fake scheduling conflicts) at the Senate Theater. However there is an afterparty at Lager House with proceeds going to the theater. Here is the flyer:

Ok, we have a problem here. Why did I just see this hours before the event, the day of the event? I swear does anybody promote anything anymore? I had already made plans to start drinking early Saturday but I would have been interested if I knew about it BEFORE THE DAY OF THE SHOW. It has the potential to be a cool thing for fans of the movie/series or it could end up being another half-assed Detroit vs. Detroit snoozer. I will have no idea which it will be because once an event is over bands already move on to their next events and nobody covers shows around here anymore. Also of note, The Lavender Blog was the first local website to promote the Senate Theater and their desire to renovate the marquee along with the empty space next to them. This was before the News and Freep (which nobody reads anyway). I promoted it as a safe venue despite the neighborhood and worthy of your business. I also was in touch with management regarding ideas to bring up business. My suggestions: A hybrid movie/music performance (done-the Bowie thing), a movie and guest panel (done, also the Bowie thing featuring Weekend at Ricky Rat's), more older/cult movies that people may have missed when initially released (done), movie showings with cast members (done-this weekend), and a full day "film festival" of classic and new movies curated by the venue, me (haha), and online polls (not done......yet). Despite my reputation I am a supporter of local venues that deserve support instead of getting places closed and people fired so I am happy that the Senate is doing better. But as John Travolta said in Pulp Fiction, "A thank you would be nice."

Instead I'll just have to concentrate on movies. Of course "Joker" is still out there and highly recommended. And then there's the new Terminator movie "Dark Fate" which bombed but got good reviews. I like the Terminator movies. I remember my parents taking me to see T2 (a personal favorite) at the Rialto in Grayling and me not wanting it to end (the sign of a great movie). Based on the reviews of the latest, and backlash, and grosses, they should have called it "Terminator: Fury Road" as the filmmakers tried to replicate (pun intended) the success of the Mad Max reboot. Well, it didn't work, but has decent word of mouth so I'll probably check it out.
Next up is "Doctor Sleep". As you know, or don't, The Shining is my favorite movie so of course I'm interested. I am also concerned because my chief film correspondent Vinnie was unimpressed with the trailers. I do think it will be tough to pull off. It technically is a sequel to a book from a book, yet includes elements from the 1980 movie that weren't in the original book. My expectations are low and I hope to be surprised (same as my dating game in college). At least I can visit the Overlook Hotel again even though it blew up into flames in the book. And don't even with the spoiler alert. Nobody reads books anymore.

That's all I got for the Weekend Prevue. Slim Pickins, I know. In a side note, last week I stood up in a wedding as the "Man of Honor" and it wasn't until the reception that I found out I had to give a speech. I had left my notebook at the hotel so I had to improvise (actually, not my strong suit). Most of it will remain private but I do want to emphasize my closing statement: The world is filled with so much anger, negativity, and hate that it makes it difficult to interact with anyone anymore or even go online. It is all so depressing. This is why I was so excited to see everybody at this event so happy. I concluded with "You will receive many Congrats tonight, but not from me, I just say Thank You." People cried.

As you know I have been at odds with a certain group of people on public social media the past year. I was frustrated seeing the hate, loathing, and the eventual threats. I advocated for people to help them seek help if the anti-depressants were not working, but never any harm, or even worse, death, which is what they were tasking on me. I am very proud to say that they have finally found a sprinkle of happiness. I don't care to see anybody miserable at any time, even people that don't like me (or publicly wished I was dead). I just want people to be happy, and I will include a few public screencaps from public social media to confirm this turnaround from advocating violence into embracing happiness and love...

Once again, it makes me happy to see others so happy, and I hope the Third Judicial Court can see the strides being made (no worries, they will). I am glad that you are happy with people being killed and it enriches your life and even posting it on public social media, and for that I will invoke my wedding speech, and say Thank You.

From the Iceman Commeth,
Bryan Metro

Monday, November 4, 2019

Metro Escapes Detroit

"It will be a miracle if this goes off as planned..."

Hey all, Metro here. This was the first line of what was to be in my journal of adventures, but it was the only thing I wrote. Sorry, I'm in LiveJournal mode. I will try to make this as Milo-less as possible. Emphasis on "try". Don't worry, I tie it into the local scene.

I didn't think I would survive last week. On Tuesday me and Born Evil were to cover the first ever WWE night at the Wings game (Carmella, who shook my hand, was a peach in person). Then up at 4am on Wednesday to catch a 9:45am flight. The next four days were to be spent in Orlando for a wedding (I was in the bridal party as the Man of Honor). Then fly back the day after the reception (never a good idea).

Leading up to this death race I spent most of my time in bed worrying about the worst that could happen: The panic attack or seizure from not having a drink during the ceremony, engine failure on the plane, the hijacker with time management issues who waited until after the engine failure, the ominous call from the doctor back in Michigan saying "We need to see you as soon as possible", the raving madman wielding a baton at an Indian couple at the baggage claim, the father who vanished from the plane mid-flight, the fear when the stewardess says "The life vests are under your seats but you won't need them", the frustration at having forgotten to tape all of this week's Patty Winters Shows, terror at the realization you forgot the Xanax and more importantly, extra boxers, and you are in the middle seat and already starting to smell, and the worry about receiving additional court information. Just kidding on that last one, ha ha.

Medium-size story short- It went off fine, as planned which was a relief and also slightly disappointing in a weird way. Of course there were a few hiccups: Being pulled aside by TSA because I worse my wedding suit to save money and some brat behind me yelled "Its the Joker" (the suit was Lavender, duhhhh, with a green shirt and orange tie). There was also the vomiting in the hotel room after the reception, not because of too much drink, but because of a coughing fit. After cleaning the trash can like a true gent I lined it with a towel and put an index card on top simply saying "I'm back" in blood red lipstick that appeared out of nowhere.

There were also a lot of positive moments as well but the Constant Readers don't want to hear about that because that's personal and part of a different project. Switching to essay mode, I took two things away from this whirlwind week.
One- While in Florida I experienced a catharsis of sorts. For four days I had no laptop, no internet, no Facebook, and a bare bones burner phone in case I got lost/went missing. After Day 1 it was like I was out of detox. I felt great. I was no longer inundated with posts about the neighbor with a basement full of bones, how to reduce your debt, the catastrophic box office of the latest Ghostbusters...I mean Terminator movie, the economy, the plane whose engine had failed, and additional court information. Just kidding on that last one, ha ha. But it really was a cleansing feeling. Not once did I feel a panic attack coming on, but that could have been the constant beer being fed to me with the day usually starting with a voice saying "Here, Number 1". You should try it (minus the beer if you wish). Just disappear, even if it's here. Also, value your friends. I don't mean to sound like I'm lecturing. I don't want to be "that guy" who's now straight edge and feels the need to tell everybody how great it is as they all internally roll their eyes (nothing against sobriety, but it can be insufferable and pandering). I digress. Value your close one's. I don't have a bunch of friends (surprised?) but that's by design. So many people are boring (segue in 10...9....8...), but the friends I have mean so much and never take them for granted. This past week I reconnected with old friend Kevin Owens along with making a new one in Negasonic Teenage Warhead.

Two- When I got back to Michigan I was surrounded by a sense of emptiness. Don't get me wrong, I was happy to be home as my vacation quota is around four days before I completely lose it and roam. But after getting home, as The Writer, I need to write to make myself "level", and I saw that there was nothing at all (locally) to write about. I know its nearing the end of the year and things are lean, but wowie zowie, this is the worst I've seen it. The first thing I saw was a Hip In Detroit interview with Divorced Ryan Allen where he compared himself to Kurt Cobain and I spent the next two hours in the bathroom crying (no wellness check needed). What I am saying/asking is if there are any hot (local) topics that none of the local pussy journalists will touch, message or e-mail me. I made a promise to keep writing so give me something to work with: the sex scandal between ????, the record release show that's actually worth going to, the GoFundMe's that are worth contributing to, not the cash grabs like Electric Six or some revolting blob who quit their job and asks for money. Give me something to work with. Everything is so boring. Thus, I gift you with my most boring post of the year. Lets work together. I'll be your mirror.

I'm Back
Bryan Metro

Friday, October 25, 2019

Bryan Metro Covers the Founders Brewery Issue

Hey all Metro here. With it being (technically) Halloween weekend with Halloween being on a weekday this year this post has been a trick, not a treat. You really think I'm going there with that headline? I know some may say this is clickbait, but since I don't make money off of this site it really isn't. I just basically wanted to talk about cool things to do for the Halloween season. To be honest, the Halloween season hasn't been the same since my early days. The allure of haunted houses and hayrides and cider mills has nearly vanished to me. Its not due to lack of interest (or my ballooning social anxiety), I just don't see much about them. Everything feels just so insulated. Organized social functions for kids, the talk about not going to "that house" because the porch light was red, a sign that the Ripper could be there, schools giving out Xanax, Klonopin, and Nembutal instead of Mini-Snickers, Gobstoppers, and Kit Kats. The protest outside of the house of the elderly couple because they include pennies with the candy because it is an insult to the child (the protest including a link to the child's cashme/paypal), the terror of seeing a single unopened candy corn in their child's bag causing the entire bag to be destroyed. The horror (and subsequent police report) regarding the hidden religious leaflet. The organized school functions where children are coached by a professional how to be spooky but not scary, along with the other life coach who says its okay to be positive and happy in your costume as 30 ten year olds, all on antidepressants, look on in confusion. The fear of a mass shooting at a high school dance causes it to be turned into a "lock-out" where the only perk is having an indoor pool which results in the teenage stress of trying to figure out a costume that would work in a pool (the top two choices; Little Mermaid and Aquaman).

Just thinking about all of this just bums me out and I realize I don't really have any suggestions for you. I'm pretty sure that the played out Creepy Cheapy is this weekend but they say its sold out. Who goes to these? Its just a bunch of nobody local bands performing (poorly) as more famous acts. And it sells out every year. It reminds me of The Bang dance thing in Ann Arbor. I see over a hundred photos and don't recognize a single person. Do they fly in crisis actors to fill it up because this year's Creepy Cheapy lineup is a crisis. Everything just seems a little bland this year.

I try to have a different costume every year and had trouble coming up with one this year. I had already been the Driller Killer and the Emotional Vampire (an expensive suit and hair gel), so this year I am going as Cliff Booth from the latest Tarantino film "Once Upon A Time in Hollywood". I expect there will be a lot of Jokers this year which will be cause for a negative article from the New York Times along with another reason for parents to keep their kids locked in the bedroom with a SpongeBob Halloween episode on the tv.

If you're not one for pageantry, Once Upon a Time in Hollywood is being re-released this weekend with 4 additional scenes. It is one of my favorite movies of the year thus far along with Joker and John Wick 3. I highly recommend catching it on the big screen as meant to be.
That's about it for my Founders Brewery post. Everybody have a fun and safe Halloween week!

From the Iceman Commeth,
Bryan Metro

Wednesday, October 23, 2019

Drama Free- And I Welcome It

Hey all Metro here. Yesterday I wrote a post (that is back in the editing room) where I was very angry about a situation regarding a local artist who had recently passed away and I saw comments from that awful clique trivializing his death because he was white or yt or whatever along with addiction issues and it really pissed me off. Addiction to anything is a problem (that's including addiction to hate). After posting on it I received social media comments making fun of my appearance, posting my parents' personal information and threatening to "talk to them", and calling me a child molester (What??). Its their typical and boring defense technique.

What I am saying, or trying to say, is yes the world can be shit. Watch the news. Any channel, but you, me, WE can make a little slice of difference, just by being positive. I was angry yesterday because of how the same people can spew such hate and rarely be called out on it and I reacted. Today is a new day, yes it is, and I think it would be a rad idea if all of the Constant Readers (and Haters) would take a moment to say or do something nice for someone. They don't have to be the same race or gender. In fact there would be bonus points if it wasn't. It could be a stranger, a friend, family, even somebody you don't really get along with. Media and social media and some parasitic individuals can really bring you down, but seeing another person smile is the true, though small, victory.

Also, if you know anybody with addiction issues or depression, don't sleep on it. Sometimes it is just good to talk. And if you know anybody with mental issues work with them to get help, not support them with re-posts and "likes" on the internet.

Sorry for the boring post, but I was trying to be genuine.


Tuesday, October 22, 2019

Drama, and I'm Tired of it.

Friday could have been a disaster.

This lone sentence sat collecting dust in my writing notebook since last Friday. Indeed, Friday could have been a disaster, but it turned out okay. There were the legal obligations that could have turned dark but didn't and I kept telling myself mantras like "Its important to be likable" as Morrissey sang "This Charming Man" over the soundtrack. The decent day came at a cost though as it left me mentally exhausted and unable to complete my next post entitled "The Best Tits in Entertainment!" which would have surely been my magnum opus. But I became distracted. And it was time to go back to the past.

-How does this even get posted? Consider this to be a prologue for what is to come, but c'mon man

As you know I don't "hate" anybody, but I do allow myself to dislike. The other day a local artist passed away. His name was Stretch Adam and he was well liked from what I've read. I am not familiar with him but we have/had some mutual friends. Well the resident local psycho Asia Mock (who is suing me hahaha) went on a tirade about the local artist's death. This has since been deleted, but an anonymous Constant Reader managed to screencap it. This is why I don't go on the internet as much anymore. Complete toxic depression. These screencaps (there are a lot) were all posted publicly and were sent to me by an anonymous Constant Reader, and are pretty terrible. Cue your regrets in 3....2....1....


A comment from a personal friend of the deceased that was disregarded. Classy.

For years I have said Asia needs to get mental help. Great job Steph!!

Wow...…….once again very classy (and deleted).

Hey Chaely Chartier!  Good to see you again, and posting comments like this on public social media. Now Go Fund Me a beer.

"Because I'm high haha."   Thank you!!!!

At last we have the infamous poet but not really, just a coward checking in. Mere is the one who suggested I should be in a dumpster (death threat). She fancies herself as an activist but is just overweight. And I haven't even seen her!

Steph Cox with a good point! Looks like Asia overstepped her whatever again and is hemorrhaging friends.

Ummm Benson (oh the irony) and Eddie. Welcome to public domain!!!!!!! Yeeeeeeee! Whooooo! Zzzz
Making fun of those who have passed with "grief is terrible". Completely disgusting, however she is in need of services due to the mental state.

Once again Mere, who nobody knows (yet). These are really great stereotyp…..I mean people!

"He looked like crack head" coming from a cluster of people constantly complaining about appearances. Way to go. Home run. Most of this has been deleted but was public for a while, and now its public forever. As is this. Some fatty patty with an alias who wishes me dead (publicly filed) and is so profound but hides. I don't care bitch, but keep in mind this is still my cover photo and will always be.

Block me all you want, but we'z goin' public. Violence is never an answer and to laugh about it one minute and complain about the next. Enough.

*Update with responses...

Wow.... I anticipate this FB page being zapped within 48 hours.

I guess I struck a nerve. Anyway because her social media is clouded and she is such a voice but is afraid to show her face, allow me to do the honor. Generic, typical, everything painted on, everything fake just like this last post

This blob is out of its league. I've never bought anything from Java Hutt. Just borrowed props because Asia (and you) threatened physical harm, even death, on me. No wonder you don't post your real name. Is it fear of oppression because of your opinions (oh the irony) or just because you're just another nobody.

From the Iceman Commeth,
Bryan Metro


Tuesday, October 15, 2019

The Deposition of Bryan Metro Part 2

Writer's Note- The following is a work of fiction. Any resemblance to actual events, locales, or persons is entirely coincidental. The opening line of this post is, "I can't believe they took Drew's idea over mine!" Also, since its Fall, might as well state the Blog Policy: If you find anything offensive or factually incorrect please contact me and I will remove it and offer an apology. One more time, and I'll speak slow.....I Will Remove It. Just be polite about it.

"I can't believe they took Drew's idea over mine!"

I'm laying out by the pool at the house by the beach and somebody mutters this statement and it is a nice Fall 75 degrees but tensions are high at the pool and an air of jealousy surrounds us and everybody is being catty which is a real bummer. Basically, whenever we are out here we are either coming up with questions about fashion to send to GQ or topic suggestions for the Patty Winters Show. Today at the pool is the usual gang, myself, Trent, Scott, Amy, and Matt. Joining us are the sister of WWE's Bray Wyatt who has possible tax problems, China who works at Powertools nightclub, Drew who is unemployed, some bimbo who insists on being called "Willy Wonka" and works in crowdsourcing (we had to look up if that is a real thing), and CoCo who works at Golden Corral, practically lives there, and Sophia Coppola but not the famous one; this one cleans bathrooms and DJ's on the side, and Rusty who nobody knows or really cares about.

We're all arguing because Drew's suggestion was chosen for this Friday's Patty Winters Show which will be taped Friday and air on December 29th, 2019. However, the day started with all of us working on my motion to dismiss the motion to dismiss the motion to dismiss the dismiss to dismiss the motion to dismisss (3 S's!!!!!) my motion to dismiss. Most of the time was spent brainstorming stunts and gimmicks instead of the paperwork. At one point somebody suggested sending Outrageous Dave in my place because we look the same, pretty much the same person, and no one would tell us apart. Matt offered to go but he is slightly more handsome than me, almost too pretty, but Trent said no because Matt is a homosexual and would likely "botch it."

Someone else, Trent I think, suggested that all of my responses should be from movies or music and the next hour was spent discussing the options including:  "I am not a crook." (Point Break 1991), "That's like your opinion man." (The Big Lebowski 1998), "Woo hoo, witchy woman, see how high she flies." (Witchy Woman by The Eagles), "Hey woman, you got the blues cause you ain't got no one else to use." (Evil Woman by ELO), "I want a girl to make a mess, to do no wrong she must confess." (Spooky Girlfriend by Elvis Costello), "Nice Outfit." (Batman 1989), "Are you out of your fucking mind?" (The Shining 1980), "Yes its true...this man has no dick." (Ghostbusters 1984), "Well that's what I heard!" (Ghostbusters 1984), "Everybody relax. I'm here." (Big Trouble in Little China 1986), "Sooner or later I rub everybody the wrong way." (Big Trouble in Little China 1986), "Are you crazy? Is that your problem?" (Big Trouble in Little China 1986), "This is the game that moves as you play." (The Have Nots by X), "What! I'm supposed to buy this shit?" (Big Trouble in Little China 1986), "Ask me a question." (American Psycho 2000), "How do you sleep at night?" (How Do You Sleep by John Lennon), and "We're being taken for a ride...again." (Girlfriend is Better by The Talking Heads).

The conversation was capped off by Trent suggesting I just respond to every question by impersonating Robert DeNiro as Max Cady speaking in tongues in Cape Fear (1991). At this point Drew receives an e-mail from the Patty Winters Show informing him that his topic was selected for this Friday's Patty Winters Show which will be taped and air on December 29th, 2019. The topic is, "How Can A Blog Affect One's Sexual Potency?" There were immediate grumblings among everybody, jealous that such an absurd topic was accepted. I was stunned that my submission (no pun intended) didn't win. It was "Haunted Pools With a Need For Humans" especially with Patty interviewing a sentient pool filter along with a garden hose. Oh well, next time.

At this point we all hop on our laptops to check social media. Scott pulls up an article on the NBA and China and breaks down admitting it affected his sexual potency. Amy plays a music video from The Smiths and Trent whines that it is messing with his sexual potency, although Matt says that it is enhancing his sexual potency. Matt then brings up the latest trailer for the new Zombieland movie and Scott says, "That preview double tapped my sexual potency," and nobody laughed. By now, everybody is arguing and the sun is going down which affects my sexual potency and I decide to retire to the master bedroom and while walking through the patio I notice Drew sobbing in a corner coloring his face with a black Sharpie, and I just sigh, shrug, whatever, and then went upstairs.

From the Iceman Commeth,
Bryan Metro

Monday, October 14, 2019

The Deposition of Bryan Metro Part 1

This is the non-fiction part as I'm taking a break from the fictional part where the crew at the house by the beach attempt to construct a Motion to dismiss a motion to dismiss a motion to dismiss a motion......to dismiss. Its a total laugh riot.

"Somewhere in the last few years, and I can't pinpoint exactly when although it could have been around the 2017 Hamtramck Music Festival, a vague yet almost overwhelming and irrational annoyance started tearing through me maybe up to a dozen times a day. This annoyance was over things so seemingly minor, so out of my usual field of reference, that I was surprised by how I had to take a deep breath to dismantle this disgust and frustration that was all due to the foolishness of other people: adults, acquaintances, and strangers on social media who offered up their rash opinions and judgments, their mindless preoccupations, always with an unwavering certitude that they were right. A toxic attitude seemed to drift off every post or comment or tweet whether it was actually there or not. This anger was new, something I'd never experienced before, and it was tied in with an anxiousness, an oppression I felt whenever I ventured online, a sense that I was going to somehow make a mistake instead of simply offering an opinion or make a joke or criticize someone or something. This idea would have been unthinkable ten years earlier, that an opinion could become something wrong, but in an infuriated polarized society people were blocked because of these opinions, and unfollowed because they were perceived in ways that might be inaccurate. The fearful began to instantly see the entire humanity of an individual in a cheeky, offensive tweet and were outraged; people were attacked and unfriended for backing the 'wrong' candidate or having the 'wrong' opinion or for simply stating the 'wrong' belief. It was as if no one could differentiate between a living person and a string of words hastily typed out on a black sapphire screen. The culture at large seemed to encourage discourse but social media had become a trap, and what it really wanted to do was shut down the individual. What often activated my stress was that other people were always angry about everything, presenting themselves as enraged by opinions I believed in and liked or thought were simply innocuous. My pushback against all of this forced me to confront a degraded fantasy of myself- an actor, as someone I never thought existed, and this, in turn, became a constant reminder of my failings. And what was worse: this anger could become addictive to the point where I just gave up and sat there exhausted, mute with stress. But ultimately silence and submission were what the machine wanted."

"This is an age that judges everybody so harshly through the lens of identity politics that if you resist the threatening groupthink of 'progressive ideology,' which proposes universal inclusivity except for those who dare to ask any questions, you're somehow fucked. Everyone has to be the same, and have the same reactions to any given work of art, or movement or idea, and if you refuse to join the chorus of approval you will be tagged a racist or misogynist. This is what happens to a culture when it no longer cares about art."

*Writer's Note- That's not actually by me. It is taken from Bret Easton Ellis' 2019 book "White" which I highly recommend reading. I did add the Hamtramck Music Fest reference to placate the Constant Readers who like the local flavor. But if you look at it, that excerpt could have been written by me. I have had similar discussions with adults, acquaintances, strangers where some of the same verbiage was used, and this was months before the book came out. Why just the other day, I was going through my spam folder deleting mail about penile enlargements, herpes, tax relief, AIDS, another about herpes (jeeze), car insurance, and a Swingers Party in Farmington Hills that was sent by a total "pass" when I stumbled across this gem,  where the writer couldn't even spell the word "Dismiss" correctly. "Dismisss"??? Also, a pointer to the other geniuses out there, December 29th, 2019 hasn't happened yet. I guess its due to a voracious sexual potency....oh never mind. However, it is possible to go back to the future and I promise that there will be no blog post on that day, December 29th, 2019. Have a great week everyone!!!!! I'll try to have a pop culture post up later this week along with the fictitious Part 2 of this laugh riot. Congratulations! To the Constant Readers.

From the Iceman Commeth,
Bryan Metro

Monday, October 7, 2019

The Lost Art of Art + Review of Joker.

Hey all, Metro here and I'm in "Essay Mode". I'll be touching on previous points about 2019 along with Bonus Content, a review of 2019's "Joker". Yowie Wowie!
2019 is easily the nadir of being an artist in the last two or three decades, maybe since the 1950's. By "art", I mean all mediums, film, writing (journalism), music, and, well, art. The root of the problem, or at least a majority of the problem is the media and society and white people. The other week Bill Maher had a brilliant take on the problem with white people. I am not a huge fan of his. He can be frustrating, inconsistent, and smug, but he nailed it here. If you don't read another word of this post at least watch the clip. Especially if you are white or your name is Andrew, Chaely, Abigail, or Aubrey.
                      Some people are insufferable.

In that clip he explains it much better than I could, given my busy schedule, however I can add to it which I will try to do, and it looks like Maher has joined me and Bret Easton Ellis in the "Liberals who are Turned off By the Media and the Far Left" Club. Maher has always been a wishy-washy Libertarian and myself and Ellis started out Liberals, went middle of the road, and now lean Republican but not really. Its just that whole "turn off/being talked down to" factor.

My issue is society as a whole (or maybe I should say a majority), and their need to "touch all the bases/check all the boxes" or compromise their vision out of obligation, fear, or outside pressure regarding their art. It compromises the artist's vision and I stress it is the Artist's Vision, not yours. A recent example is Tarantino's latest "Once Upon A Time In Hollywood". People (mostly white) complained about the lack of people of color in the film. Everybody knows that there were no people of color in 1969 Hollywood. Of course I'm kidding, but the fact I have to point that out compromises my voice, or at least dilutes it, for just making a joke and leads to my next point.

A year or so ago I saw "Monty Python and the Holy Grail" downtown hosted by John Cleese. He was very candid and at the end said that he was glad he's not in comedy anymore because these days you have to please everybody and that is impossible. This is a fact. Artists today feel the need/pressure ("Have To!") please everyone. Once that mentality sets in, once again, the art is compromised. Look at Eddie Murphy's SNL skits from the 1980's versus 2019 Eddie Murphy apologizing ("Have To!") for his comedy shows from the 1980's before returning to SNL. Look at SNL itself. It has become less a comedy show (insert joke about whether it hasn't been for years) and more of an agenda driven show. What would Richard Pryor say? Well not much, but what would Chris Rock say? He's next to blacklisted in Hollywood because he speaks his mind. Art has gone from "pushing the envelope" to "catering to everybody". I don't mean that all art should push the envelope, but I do mean that you shouldn't have to fear pushing the envelope. I'm honestly surprised that there haven't been any protests or petitions from miserable people calling for a change to the Oscar statue's design because it is too masculine. Or even better previous winners returning theirs out of protest. I know it sounds absurd on the surface, but can't you really see that happening? I can, and I hope I didn't give anybody any ideas. Anyway lets do a quick list!
Things That Couldn't Be Made In 2019!

The past week I've had a few conversations with people about this topic. One even said they didn't even have any suggestions because everything can be tweaked or rewritten. This proved my point about the artist's original voice being silenced to appease a select few who won't even watch anyway. He did eventually have a suggestion that I missed and ended up making the list. Thanks to all who gave their thoughts. I stole some of your ideas and you receive no credit. Lets roll. In no particular order:

- Most of Stanley Kubrick's work with emphasis on "Lolita" and "Eyes Wide Shut" because those may hit too close to home with Post-Epstein 2019 Hollywood. And don't forget about "A Clockwork Orange". Oh boy, if people are protesting the new Joker movie imagine the outrage over a film about a group of white people attacking other white people while only drinking milk (also white). Yowie Wowie!

- "Silence of the Lambs". Here is what I imagine a pitch/script session in 2019 would sound like: "Hmmmm, a serial killer assisting the FBI in catching an active serial killer. I like it!"....continues reading...."Wait, the main villain is a tranny and the secondary villain who is actually an anti-hero is a probable homosexual? No way we can put this out. The LGBLTLMNOP community will go nuts! Nix it. Get back to working on the new season of 'Pose'!"

- "Married With Children". I watch re-runs on late night tv and it never fails to crack me up, but I also wonder how did this even air in the 1990's? Proof. Look at Al Bundy's return to tv in "Modern Family" (actually a decent show when I catch it before Monday Night Raw), but another example of checking those boxes.

- "The Breakfast Club". This one has a caveat. It could be made in 2019, but instead of four detention students there would be seventeen representing every major demographic because that's how schools work right? Of course they'd end up forgetting the post-op Mexican so cue up the protests.

- "Life of Brian". I wavered on this one because it is a satire on religion which would actually be en vogue in 2019. However the boycotts would now be coming from the far Right, but I'm not totally sure because I referenced the tv show "Pose" earlier which features a cast of unexperienced Trans actors, which I have no problem with, and produced by Ryan Murphy, a white homosexual, which I have no problem with, and there were next to zero protests. People just didn't watch it.

- The first few seasons of the Tim & Eric Show. Especially the "Carol" office segments. Of course in 2019 they could defend the fat shaming by it being a satire of office toxic masculinity, but then there's that pesky clip of Carol (played by a white man) trying and failing to "Get In Shape!"

-"Animal House". Would be next to impossible. This one needs its own list. I always enjoy it when its on because usually I've checked out by then (they don't play it during General Hospital), and I've stopped thinking about changing the world (have I ever even tried?). Its a good technique. I highly recommend it. Reduces stress, even when I inevitably cry when they take the bar from Delta House. "They took the bar! The whole fucking bar!"

- "Airplane". If only for the sequence where nobody can understand the two black passengers (the only people of color in the movie other than Kareem) except for an older white woman who can speak "jive". Absurd, hilarious, no can do today. Ain't no thang.

- "Taxi Driver". No way this could be made today. If people are losing their shit over "Joker" there is no way. It came out during the best decade in film, the 1970's (my opinion; those are still legal right?). "The Godfather" could still be made. "All the Presidents Men" sure as hell could still be made today. In fact I'm waiting for a sequel to be announced from Netflix directed by Ron Howard. "Dog Day Afternoon" could still be made, though there could be protests that the Chris Sarandon character did not have enough screen time. "Apocalypse Now" could still be made. "Star Wars" could still be made but only after a complete overhaul of the creatures and droids and live action cast and oh wait that already happened! "Taxi Driver"? Nope. A socially awkward white male as both a savior and an anti-hero. Wait a second, it actually could be made today, but only if Travis was a character in a comic. Also weird that Jodie Foster (a white female lesbian) appears twice on this list.

- "American Psycho". The book could never come out today. It barely made it out in 1991, and nobody understood it, especially the protestors who didn't even read it. It was met with death threats (sound familiar?). I was surprised that it actually made it to the theaters (DiCaprio was attached but even he was scared off). I was there opening night of course. Also interesting is that it was directed by Mary Harron, a white female and the screenplay written by Guinevere Turner, a white female lesbian. Maybe this film kickstarted the "We Need Something To Deflect" movement. As you know, it has become a cult classic quoted to this day (mostly by white males who missed the point that it was actually a comedy/satire).

- "Kick Ass". This is the most recent entry on the list. The scene with Hit Girl killing a bunch of (black) drug dealers would never fly today although I could see them rewriting it to be a biker gang because all biker gangs deal drungs, right? The sequel came out a few years ago and co-starred Jim Carrey who disowned the movie and refused to promote it because of the violence. Because....umm he didn't read the script? Nahhhhh the pressure of fear referenced above. This despite appearing in another comic adaptation "Batman Forever" which featured lots of gunplay but I guess it was okay then.

That's all I have for now. I'm sure there's more. I know that on the surface this post comes across as anti-white, but that is not the case. Sometimes we just need to slide down the surface of things. I just used a select fringe tangent of white people as an example. I have a white cat and a cat of color and am a cat dad to a black and white cat. This post is more about our culture of fear and the effect it has on being an artist. I believe if you are creating something you shouldn't have to look over your shoulder. If you are against something, cool, but make sure that it is because of passion and not pats on the back, social media "likes", or because you feel you have to. "Don't Dream It, Be It." That was from Rocky Horror, which was remade a year ago and bombed. Now onto the bonus content

-Metro's Revue of "Joker"-
Well, I liked it. It was original, well-made, and kept my attention without pandering to me.Joaquin Phoenix knocked it out of the park. Be advised, this is not a cookie cutter comic book/superhero movie but more of a drama/character study. I truly believe it is this generation's "Taxi Driver". A few people walked out I noticed, probably to go sneak into something "safe". It was a little slow in the middle section, but overall was a tremendous movie. Nicholson and Ledger's Jokers were more entertaining, but I think Phoenix's performance was more impressive. Nicholson and Ledger benefitted from the "less is more" approach in terms of screen time, but if I'm not mistaken, Phoenix was in nearly every scene of the movie which was risky because the Joker is a character like The Hulk where less is more, but they pulled it off. It is worth a watch especially if you are an adult with a brain. To come full circle, CNN on Twitter just posted a tweet complaining they used a Gary Glitter song in the movie (Vice stole the same story angle). This is what its come to, and I couldn't be more miserable as somebody who feels like he has some semblance of creativity. Another article reports two people were ejected from a Joker screening because of smoking. Its almost as if the media is begging "Please somebody shoot up another theater so we can say I told you so." Fuck off media. Joker 4/5 stars.

From the Iceman Commeth,
Bryan Metro

Friday, September 27, 2019

Always Look On the Bright Side Of Life

Hey all Metro here. I decided to remove yesterday's post where I teased posting every single threat made against me, friends, and family. I was going through my legal shit and I got down in the dumps and figured, "Screw this. These people can say things, nasty, violent, things about me, many local businesses, their employees, and get away with it; in fact try to make money off it. Not on my watch."
Then I thought, why stress about it? Its bringing you down, which is what they would have a laugh with. So I pulled it. I still have close to two-hundred screenshots, but why bother? Anybody with eyes can look them up (if they haven't been deleted; a possibility), and there's still current original hate-fueled comments in the present. Instead, I will focus on the positive and not live in the past.

So here is a decent pic of Christina Ricci, who I practically grew up with (she's almost the same age by a few months).

I remember watching Addams Family Values in 1993 and we would have both been around the age of 14, and just enchanted by the scene where she breaks character and smiles, but it is the most insincere, evil smile, and I fell in love. Oh shucks ya made me blush. Here is a screenshot.

Holy crap I just realized she looks like the climate change acto…..advocate that has been in the news. Wow that's eerie. Need to retain my coming of age, wash my eyes, and scrub my brain...

Okay, I'm back and still continuing with the positivity. So, the ole birthday is coming up soon and another of my longtime crushes is Shannyn Sossamon who shares the same birthday, down to the year which I have always found cool. We're turning 41 together girl. Ain't it cool? Also call me. She was fantastic in "Rule of Attraction" as Lauren Hynde. A movie, and media personality who brings only positive memories. Here is a photo.

Oh shit, sorry about that. I have no idea why my Shannyn Sossamon photo was in the "Wings Project" folder next to the fisheyes.jpeg. Sorry about that. Immediately after uploading the pic I got a text from Trent saying that the fish eyes pic should be in the "10/11/19" folder and not the "Wings Project" one so I moved it Lets try this again...

Sorry, jeeze, yowie wowie. How did these get in my Shannyn Sossamon folder?? More technical issues. The first cap is from today Sept. 27th (oh the irony) and the second one was from a few months ago. Yikes. Lets redefine "horrific language" as public record hate speech threats against the police. Now granted, as I have said before, there are bad apples in every job, but "Every Single One"? That sure sounds like a call to terrorism. Actually calling for every cop to be physically harmed in a public forum may even be an act of terrorism. I'll look into it. Here is the actual picture of Sossamon.

So that's it. Sorry for the lack of content but hey at least the cliquey clique of JSB and George Morris have a new act. You know, the typical, same guys, lets change the band name and get booked on every Fest for the rest of the year along with next year. I won't even bother posting the name. Milo already "broke the news" before they even released anything, and in a Metro Times article even, so the fix is already in. If I was a current local musician I would be appalled. The same people given chance after chance getting.....another chance. The only saving grace is that nobody reads Milo, everybody reads Metro, nobody reads Metro Times anymore, and nobody cares. So anyway. Stay positive and we'll see you soon! Bye bye!

From the Iceman Commeth,
Bryan Metro

Monday, September 23, 2019

Official 2019 DIY Street Fair Review

*Disclaimer- This is a two-parter. The first half is a review of DIY that is part fact and part fiction (you figure it out) and the second half is movie reviews. I've had these for a few days but just want to do a blast post to scratch them off because I'll be spending this week sorting through hundreds of screencaps to submit....well never mind that. Hashtag #we'recoming.

Hey all, Metro here, and I actually made it out to the DIY Street Fair. Well actually I didn't but Johnny Press did. So, I'll turn the mic over to him...

I wake up covered in sweat or piss and I can't tell because with me everything smells the same after my nasal system collapsed in 2007. I think its piss because my pj's are soaked. Then again it could be sweat because I've had a hundred degree fever for a week. The pile of shit in the corner doesn't offer any help. Fuck it.

Its Saturday, and the plan is for Metro to impersonate me and cover the DIY Street Fair. I spend the afternoon looking through Metro's legal paperwork which is always good for a laugh and the mannequin I stole yesterday is propped up in a chair waiting for me to dress it. I am momentarily concerned that Robby didn't include me in the court documents as an alias. Forgetfulness. Getting old. I walk over to the mannequin I stole yesterday and yell at it, "What are they going to do? What the fuck are they going to do?"
Yesterday I stole this mannequin from Fairlane Mall. Just walked right out with it. I had a wide grin and had already disrobed it and the security guy (black, about 50) didn't bat a lash even though I told him, "Time to make some changes," and I think he was sleeping. Typical. What if I had been stabbed while hiding in a fitting room at Forever 21? Ah, fuck it.

Last night the stolen mannequin started communicating with me. Its first words were, "I'm so cold. Dress me," but I was into my second bottle of whiskey and just fell asleep. I woke up to it screaming, "So cold, so cold, so cold." I ignored it and put a towel over its head to muffle the cries and went back to the legal stuff. I stole the mannequin to use as a distraction while I cover DIY Fair. I figured my Johnny Press hat and cosplay Clint Booth "Once Upon a Time in Hollywood" outfit would not be enough this time. So I decided to dress it up as Metro's tambo player Elizabeth First to not draw attention to me.

The fake E First didn't say anything on the ride there which could be perceived as ominous but not really. After the security geek checked the mannequin's purse (also stolen and filled with Monopoly money, Legos, and a knife, but that was in the secret spot we made), we finally were cleared to enter. As soon as we got to the Fair-proper Robo-E First said, "Drinks!", and with authority, so we got drinks. Two for me, none for you. By this time I'm drunk, lugging around the stolen mannequin decoy, yet we were able to make it to the music stage. On the way we pass the half-wit, failed booker, from Dear Darkness and I didn't say "Hello", and then the record store kid who I did say "Hello" to. I passed by Gwen Joy who I don't know but the E First mannequin says that Gwen is sore and kind of hates me because I pointed out that Zoe V's mother vandalized a house in Mexicantown. It was just trespassing and throwing a flag in the trash; nothing as horrific as setting fire to the Heidelberg project (I STRESS completely unrelated), which actually happened again today and a woman was arrested as a person of interest. I'm not sure if they thought the house was in blight-mode. Anyway, Gwen doesn't care for me because I post public facts on the internet when nobody else will so we kept walking. Then there was Kevin from Goldhouse, but no Tasha. Must've been Tunde's sponge bath day. We made it to the stage as Algebra Mothers were finishing up. They were okay, although Queen Bee's boobs look to have merged with her upper intestines, although it could have been an ill-advised wardrobe choice. There was a JSB sighting and Jeff Milo was floating around. Possessed mannequin E First pointed out Jeff and Laura from Duende and I just said, "Jeff's cool, but Laura is a total 2019 headcase," and E First said, "I have Brett Callwood on line 1," and we slapped high five.
The Beggars were due up next, and as always, they brought the fun. High energy rock and roll that the crowd, which was substantial, had a lot of fun with. I love that they still use the cheap fan for the cheesy hair effects. At this point Woodman spotted me and came over and said, ominously, "I still read," and the E First mannequin started shaking violently, or maybe it was me holding it. The doll went silent. We then shared a laugh and a back pat and I told him about stupid stuff and he said, "Bummer." I razz Woodman a lot on here about the quantity of shows, some pop-ups, but I will give him this. He is genuinely nice, and one of the few local musicians who go out of their way to support other acts, especially if they are not booked on that show. You know who you are. Trust me, that is rare. I always roll my eyes when I see messages on event pages (not stalking retards, public domain, I'm a journalist), that say "Sorry, can't make it. Work (the event is at 11pm)", or "Wish I could make it. Out of town," or the infamous, "We'll see." Hell, last week I even saw this eye-rolling gem, "I usually just go to one show a week," followed by the dreaded, "We'll see." After I calmed Shakin' E First down Woodman plugged in his portable amp and we did a pop-up set in the middle of the crowd during The Beggars' set which just seemed to confuse everyone. The Elizabeth First mannequin played tambourine via an elaborate string system that was attached to my right elbow and hip. After doing "Starting a Dance Craze" we went into one of my originals, "Dude, They're Not Breathing!" At this point I noticed that the mannequins hair was starting to fall out due to my gyrating hip movements and the elaborate string system (Elvis would be jealous), so I fled to the beer tent without saying goodbye because this bald goddamn mannequin could blow my cover despite my disguise of a loud Hawaiian shirt and the Johnny Press hat. Here is a shot the mannequin took (I think, I sure as hell didn't take it) of The Beggars just to prove I was there. In the lower corner you can even see Milo not watching the show and texting on his phone with probably the most interesting conversation ever, but maybe not. "We'll see."

It was time to go so I left the E First mannequin in a porta-john with a note stapled to its chest that said, "I'm Back!", of course in blood red letters, and then I left.

Hey all, Metro back. This concludes the coverage of Saturday at the DIY Fair. I woke up Sunday with the Superflu which makes sense because I was just in Ferndale. Who knows, I may have even caught the Bug. Anyway, its time for BONUS CONTENT!! As you know, when I'm not writing, I'm watching wrestling, sports, being sued, and going to the movies. I haven't been out to the cinema as much as I wanted to so far this year because of the death threats and threats of physical violence from A.M. and her (its?) crew, although John Wick 3 was a total blast. But I actually made it out twice, yes twice, this week to catch a few genre sequels, and here's my take:

3 From Hell- This is the latest from Rob Zombie's series revolving around the sadistic yet lovable Firefly family and it had a limited three day theatrical release. Rob Zombie's films can be polarizing. "House of 1000 Corpses" was a psychedelic horror show that introduced the main characters who ended up being so iconic that they are forever attached to Sid Haig, Sherri Moon, and Bill Moseley. Unfortunately the third act is a total snoozer. "The Devils Rejects" is Zombies best film and takes the same core characters into a more realistic environment and actually accomplishes taking these awful people and turning them into likable anti-heroes. This is aided by a tour de force performance from William Forsythe who actually is so brutal that he makes the Firefly family sympathetic. His two Halloween movies were, meh, although I liked some of the weirdness of the second one. I saw "Lords of Salem" in New York ($13 matinee) and hated it. Then I liked it, and appreciated its Rosemary's Baby vibe. It has a certain sadness to it and he scaled back on the language and violence. "31" was fun but forgettable; a funhouse ride that calls back to Corpses and Rejects.
   So this brings us to "3 From Hell", the third part in his Firefly trilogy. This is the rare movie that I liked and enjoyed, but had issues with. First off the good stuff. The characters are the selling point and they deliver. It was great to see them onscreen again and the chemistry is still there. Richard Brake (the best part of "31") as a new character fits right in. My main issues were that they weren't really given anything to do. I think the film was hindered by a lack of a real villain ala Forsythe in Rejects. They spent too much time on Baby in prison and there was too little of Sid Haig. I understand his health was an issue, but I'm just being selfish. I also thought the ending (which delivered) was a little too Robert Rodriguez for me with vans of Mexicans in luchador masks attack a brothel. Don't get me wrong, I liked it, and recommend it to fans of the series. I just think my expectations were too high. As Otis would say, "I set my standards pretty low. That way I'm not disappointed."
*Postscript- I wrote this review last week and am typing it up on Monday. Unfortunately Sid Haig passed away today at the age of 80 and this really bums me out. I met him in 2014 (shook my hand) and he was the nicest guy (and loved his sushi). He was impressed I had him sign the poster insert from the Jackie Brown special edition dvd because obviously everybody had him sign Spaulding stuff. His reply, "Well shit, that's right I was in this." RIP clown. Yayayayayayayayaya.

Rambo: Last Blood- This was batshit crazy. With this one, lets get my gripes out of the way first. It was a little slow to get going establishing new characters (macguffins) to set Rambo off and it lacked a major antagonist (Big Boss). Every review (most have been negative) that I have read refers to Trump, a Trump movie, Trumpism, whatever the fuck that is. This is 2019. Have these poofs even seen a Rambo movie. Part 1- Goes after good old boy rednecks. Part 2- Retcons the Vietnam war. Part 3- The damn Russians. Part 4- Burma because why not? This is nothing new. If this offends you go watch "Moonlight" and be miserable with a bunch of miserable people. In this one he goes after the Mexican drug and sex trafficking cartel, which by the way, is kind of like a real thing. There is a significant moment that happens in the middle of the film where I muttered to myself, "Good lord, every single one of them are going to die." And cue up the third act and it doesn't disappoint. Total gonzo chaos. I almost fell out of my seat multiple times.
For the record, both movies had a decent crowd and they all loved it, especially the applause after "3 From Hell". Sometimes its fun to see a movie with a crowd who doesn't have to watch their step because of social media tropes.

So that's it for this week's post. I should have a really good good one for next week. It should be fuuuuuun.

From the Iceman Commeth,
Bryan Metro