Not a Spinal Tap moment

Dream Theater will finally be revealing who their new drummer is in a series of videos posted on YouTube. The seven who auditioned are: Mike Mangini, Virgil Donati, Marco Minnemann, Peter Wildoer, Thomas Lang, Derek Roddy and Aquiles Priester.

From the first two videos, Mangini and Minnemann seem to be the front-runners for the job so far. Both of them are first-rate and will probably be good fits. From rumours going around the interwebs, it’s Mangini, but we’ll see I suppose.

This is a change that’s good for both Mike Portnoy and Dream Theater. As an old fan dating from the Images and Words days, I must say their output after Six Degrees has been generally underwhelming with what I consider to be less memorable songwriting compared to the earlier days.

Another big problem I have with the later albums is Mike taking a shine to some godawful rap/growl vocal stylings that he’ll stick somewhere on every album. I’m probably being petty, but I can’t stand it.

It got so that I preferred the various side projects the members participated in, such as An Evening With John Petrucci & Jordan Rudess, the Mullmuzzler albums by Labrie and Frameshift’s Unweaving the Rainbow (speaking of which, Henning, we want Frameshift 3). Hopefully playing with a new drummer will get their creative juices again, and here’s hoping that Mike finds himself interesting new projects too.

Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3

Edit: Mangini got it. I thought Minnemann would have given the band a fresher sound and is a little disappointed, but still, both are excellent choices.

John O’Shea is paid more than Ryan Giggs. Repeat as many times as needed.

My hairline has receded but my skills have not
“I’m not TOO bitter about it, but an attractive medical hair care package for employees would be good, right, Roon?”

Now that the away leg of the first CL semi-final (Neuer vs Manyoo without Neuer, Unsuccessful David vs Goliath Edition) has played itself out, I thought this worthy of comment. The irony is so thick it’s like some sort of viscous sea I could swim in. To be fair, even Fergie probably never expected his most trusty long-term retainer to have the kind of freakish impact he had in the last 1-2 years, BUT EFFIN’ JOHN O’SHEA. It’s not the only eye-rolling football factoid on that list. Not to belabor the point too much, but Tevez’s wages from The Club Formerly Known as Plucky Citeh are insane. Although a very good player, he isn’t even vaguely in the same league as his countryman Messi, whether in an absolute or relative sense. Tevez simply doesn’t have the impact compared to Messi for their respective teams, as seen by Citeh’s tactics and how horribly dependent Barcelona have appeared in the last 1-2 months on Messi. But hey, how else is an oil sheik going to get players? Except for Robinho, he really was that dense.

Iroha 04 – Plateau Princesses and Rabid Herons



attack of killer wildlife

So Iroha is back on form once again, after that weird aberration of a third episode that revolved around a lame car chase and Ohana doing her best Gutsy Ninja speech. With the start of the semester she’s off to school in the boondocks, finding out she causes an admiring minor stir with her “natural perm from a greater metropolitian area” schtick. All this is handled with the usual light comedy that the show is so good at, but we also get more plot development as it’s revealed there’s a modern competing inn in the same town and that HobironTsun may or may not have some romantic aspirations towards a certain tall strapping man. All in all, a great episode that gives us more good Ohana antics and less bungling bondage, so thumbs up.