Saturday, May 5, 2012


I am tremendously bored with life as of late. I've got nothing to do beyond sitting here, and believe it or not, that is getting old. I don't quite feel like I have enough time to bother looking for a job/timeholder, as I'm returning to ODU in the middle of June for class. It just seems pointless. I was going to take a Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu class for a month, but they needed a note from my neurologist and I stopped caring due to said time constraint. Adventures of Epilepsy Man and his faithful sidekick, Sir Bitch-a-Lot.

Also I'm bored/lonely romantically, but more on that later! I'm tired and I owe you nothing, Blogosaurus Rex!

Monday, April 16, 2012

From Soulless To Shattered (Art In Dying)

Many songs have a lot of meaning for people. This one has taken on multiple (although similar) meanings for me since I first heard it in February 2010 and it has since been my favorite song of my favorite band. Just in short, it (along with several other Arsis songs) has/have helped me with my breakup with Stephanie, which was the worst I had with a breakup (as opposed to the person at the time). The song helped me, of course, through multiple spells of general depression. What Important Song hasn't, right? The first time I met and really talked to any of the band members, it was about this song (I asked if they were gonna play it since it was my favorite and he just laughed and said "Fuck no, it's too hard to play live." Then we talked semi-drunkenly for a 20-30 minutes) Now we come to today. After dealing with all this hospitalization stuff for my bipolar disorder and how drastically both the depression and the mania can affect me, I just sort of realized that the song can once again alter its own meaning, just for me! And maybe anybody else who chooses to listen to it and/or read the lyrics speaking of which, here they are, along with a link to a Touyube of the song.

Arsis - From Soulless To Shattered (Art In Dying)

Penance for this breath of black betrayal
Stoic, famished guard the walls of this scarlet temple
Awaits to hear the sound of armies marching underground 

And the screams of failure's conquest

A wish to waste and rise alone
With only the wolves I call my own

A starving withered statue
Amidst the ruins you once knew

Condemned to defend
The weakened flesh of this facade 
From all that breathes and lies within
The vultures swarm and sharpen their talons

Upon wings of torment flying
Who's to say there is no art in dying?

A starving withered statue
Amidst the ruins you once knew
A shrine for the sick to gather
From here to hell, from soulless to shattered

From soulless to shattered

To destroy and conquer this failure
With a will of sharpened razors
To forget what has been done
And all I have overcome

[Solo: James, Nick]

Penance for this breath of black betrayal
Stoic, famished guards the walls of this scarlet temple
Awaits to hear the sound of armies marching underground
And the screams of failure's conquest

Upon wings of torment flying
Who's to say there's no art in dying?

Friday, March 16, 2012


One of the prime offenders I was referring to in my previous post texted me NOT EVEN TWO HOURS afterward, displaying the very same self-centeredness I was so discontent with. I chose not to answer, as I have been doing with the majority of their messages as of late, but this has just about taken it too far with me. I want to confront them and at the very least tell them how their selfishness makes me feel, especially given how much I do for them all the fucking time. They're notoriously thick-headed, but I don't think that has ever stopped me.

Someone else pissed me off with their response, but it isn't like it takes very much. The world can suck my dick. Stop being selfish.

On a more positive note, I got a couple nice responses from the other post. My cynical self says, "I wonder if they were genuine," but my actualized self says, "thank you."

Fuck off.

I don't like things.

So lately (just over the past week) I have fallen/jumped/whatever into what has been the most extreme manic episode I have ever had; this has been to the point where I think it has been a full-blown manic episode versus the standard hypomanic episode, which symptomatically qualifies me for a diagnosis of bipolar I disorder rather than bipolar II. My friends both at home and at school have made me feel thoughts of violence, which for anybody that knows me (the six of you reading this?), is a big deal. And it's been happening a lot, to the point of simply not hanging out with people intentionally.

I don't feel like typing a whole lot, but there's enough I want to say that I will. ... So I will? We'll see how much I haven't typed once I get going.

Basically, I don't feel like nearly all of my friends appreciate me. Sure, they may say they do, but mostly I'm that guy that will actually ASK about their problems and will care and listen. Whenever it comes to my shit, I have to bring it up first. It is ALWAYS about them. This applies to home, school, wherever; I feel fucking alone and abandoned. What I have been looking for in this break from dating and sex has been an attempt at healing myself and trying to build friendships, but all it's done is made me realize how fucking miserable and alone I really am. I know there are a handful of people that care, of course, but there were some people that I thought did at least sort of care, but they're just so caught up in their own shit that they never bother with anybody else's. I see people's true colors. And so I just want to expel them. Among other things. Selfish fucks. There are so many people that I've felt this way about recently, and perhaps some of it has had to do with my mania, but I know I have felt lonely for a while anyway, because I know that I'm always the one asking about people and never the other way. There was one person in particular that surprised me who normally doesn't have more personal conversations with me (and I'm okay with that; it's just how the friendship is) and I'm also accustomed to not being able to hang out with them every day without losing my mind. So by the end of break, having already lost my mind, I needed to stop hanging out with everyone. I was surprised when I got back on my PC in Norfolk, they had sent me a link with epilepsy information they found and read, in a completely serious sense, which really made me...happy? Something. Happy isn't the correct emotion, but I felt something and it was greatly appreciated and that small gesture showed that despite the nature of our friendship, they really do care about me. Sometimes that's all it takes. SO WHY THE FUCK IS IT SO FUCKING DIFFICULT FOR EVERYBODY ELSE TO DO SOMETHING LIKE THAT? 

I don't feel like typing anymore. You guys get the idea. I feel neglected and depressed and violent and manic and all kinds of things that aren't good. And yeah. I wasn't going to say a whole lot. Hah.

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Top Albums of 2011...A Little Late...

So I have been meaning to post my top albums list. I'm late. Surprise, surprise. I don't feel like leading into this very much, nor do I feel like elaborating much, so without any extra further ado, here is my list.

  1. Machine Head - Unto the Locust
    I've liked Machine Head since I first heard the song "Imperium" on MTV2 or something in high school, but I was simply a casual fan until I went to go see them with Megadeth (more importantly) in Richmond. It was my second time seeing Megadeth, but my first with Machine Head, and there there just isn't a powerful enough adjective to describe how much that show was stolen right out from under Dave Mustaine and co.'s feet. Since then, The Blackening has become a strong favorite album of mine, and they have naturally ceased to put out any new material after that. Until late 2011. Oh yeah, and they've toured a decent amount, cementing themselves as one of my favorite live bands. I know I am only a little liberal with my usage of the word "favorite," but I ACTUALLY mean it with MH: they are really one of my favorite bands to see live, just like their new album is solidly my favorite album of the year (only maybe less concrete than that). In fact, I'm seeing them on Monday! Darkest Hour is also playing, who is another of my favorite live bands, and whose 2011 album was on the short list for the top ten as well. After I finish typing up mini reviews, I'll probably post that as well.

    Holy shit I ramble. That's enough background. As i said, it took Robb Flynn and the guys what, four years to put out a new album? There's taking your time, and there's jerking off. But masturbation has its advantages, I suppose. And If I'm taking this analogy and running with it (...?), actually, I'm not. I don't even know what that fuck I'm talking about anymore. The album, "Unto The Locust," is just written so fantastically. It isn't masturbatory at all, actually: the solos and fills all seem to fit so well; the lyrics are some of the best I have ever read; songs like "Who We Are" make brilliant use of CHILDREN'S choirs, of all things. I could go on and on, but I think it's time to take the figurative cock out of my mouth and move on to something else.

    Standout Songs: Who We Are, This Is The End, I am Hell (Sonata in C#)
  2. Foo Fighters - Wasting Light
    Like the figurative vagina. I was NEVER really a Foo Fighters fan until my best friend, Mike, showed me the Foo's new single, "Rope." Sure, I had heard lots of Foo Fighters songs before, but this one was weird and different. So when I got back to school, I downloaded the album, and holy shit-tits, I loved it. And a half. For what it's worth, the album has my favorite song of the year, "I Should Have Known," Which is about Kurt Kobain, by the way (RHCP?). Anyway, the album itself just flows extraordinarily well, especially from my standpoint, since I am a Metal guy glancing into a rock world. It is similar, but other things are different. I could go on, but fuck you, reader(s???), I don't feel like typing.

    Standout Songs:
     I Should Have Known, Back & Forth, Miss the Misery
  3. Protest the Hero - Scurrilous
    Scurrilous came out in February. It was my favorite album of 2011 virtually the entire year until late November/early December, when I heard the two other albums I've already blathered on about. I don't know why I keep track of this stuff or why I feel emotions for INANIMATE FUCKING ALBUMS, but there ya have it. I felt bad for this phenomenal CD getting pushed down two slots for (admittedly phenomenaller) albums, but oh well, at least it wasn't for fucking LULU. Also, fuck you, I can make up my own words. Anyway, This band, unlike Machine Head, is fairly masturbatory in their playing, but it still fits. Mostly because they're Canadian, so it's fine. But the music is both obscenely high-energy and energetically obscene, which makes for a hilarious combination. Sadly, this doesn't translate live, as I was expecting them to be fantastic live, but NOPE. They all just sorta stand around, which is exactly the opposite of what their music would suggest. But a poor live performance does not a bad record make. Or however that sentence structure should be. Whatever.

    Standout Songs: The Reign of Unending Terror, Dunsel, Tongue-Splitter
  4. The Black Dahlia Murder - Ritual
    Alright, nothing but good things to say here. Except maybe have set times that last for six hours? I don't know. I can't think of too much of a negative thing to say about these guys or in particular the new album, "Ritual," except that some of the songs ran together a bit. But there were some redeeming factors: Brian Eschbach has been one of my favorite guitarists for a long time (not to discredit Ryan Knight, but he gets all the credit anyway) because DANG he writes song incredible rhythm parts. And always has. And then (you're all expecting it!), there's Shannon Lucas, drummer extraordinaire. I don't understand how he gets better with each album or (in particular) how he is able to escape the typical DOUBLE BASS and BLAST BEAT chokehold of a death/black metal record. One of my favorite parts on Ritual that made my mouth quite literally DROP open was from 2:30-2:45 in "Malenchantments of the Necrosphere," where Shannon plays a fill as his regular drum beat and it just fits so fantastically well. It's shit like that, that makes this album so strong.

    Standout Songs: Carbonized in Cruciform, Blood in the Ink,
     Malenchantments of the Necrosphere
  5. Revocation - Chaos of Forms 
    So if I had to rate my two favorite bands, Revocation would be #2. Hell, even if I didn't have to, Revocation is still there. Anybody who knows me knows that Arsis is on top, of course. So what the hell is my second favorite band doing all the way down at #5, anyway? The short answer is: tough competition. The slightly longer 
    is: REALLY tough competition. I CAN'T SAY ANYTHING OF SUBSTANCE. Basically, This album was awesome and I especially loved the new things the guys did with the vocals (I hope the do more melodicy/gang vocals in the future) and there were certainly some strong songs, but not all of them were as memorable to me - the album seemed to lose steam as it neared the end. Not to say they were bad songs, but I just didn't like the album personally quite as much as "Empire of the Obscene" and particularly "Existence is Futile," which to this day is one of my favorite albums of all time (I guess that might be a little tough to follow up, too). Like I said, "Chaos of Forms" is still a great album, and the first half and a few outliers are more than enough to make up for any unmemorable songs.

    Standout Songs: Conjuring the Cataclysm, No Funeral, Dissolution Ritual
  6. Megadeth - Th1rt3en  
    Megadeth rocks, everyone knows it, everyone loves it. I wish I had more to talk about. Mostly everything short of the title was pretty spot-on with this record. Oh, and the video with the chimpanzees....WHAT THE ASSFUCKING *plural noun* WAS THAT ALL ABOUT? I don't know, musically the album was strong. Dave's vocals sounded great, if not a bit processed. The songwriting was fun, Shawn Drover did the same thing he always does, Chris Broderick was
     Chris Broderick, Dave Ellefson was there, so that's cool. Most people who listen to Megadeth aren't going to be expecting anything revolutionary, so when there is something slightly new-sounding, it makes it that much better.

    Standout Songs: Black Swan, 13, Whose Life (Is It Anyways?)
  7. Opeth - Heritage
    SPEAKING of new sounding, this album was so fucking controversial it wasn't even funny. Wait. Yes it was. Internet Metalheads are so closed-minded and outspoken and rowdy so OF COURSE it was hilarious! In case you are unaware, Opeth (A well-known death metal band) announced that there would be no harsh vocals on their new album, creating an uproar among the Internet Metalheads. Because Metalheads, of course, can only like Metal and if they like anything else, they're FALSE.

    Luckily, around this time, I was starting to get into some funk and jazz and stuff like that, which this album turned out to be very heavily-rooted in (jazz mostly). The drums were great, piano/keyboards, guitars, blah blah blah instruments were earlicious. Etc. You guys get the picture. Now it is my #7 album of the year.

    Standout Songs: Folklore, Nepenthe, The Lines in My Hand
  8. Giant Squid - Cenotes
    Now here is a band that is just weird. You think you have heard every sort of band, but then someone is all like "Hey brah, have you checked out this Giant Squid?" And you just sit there, dumbfounded, because you think you're about to see a ginormous cephalopod. Then he reaches into a bag, and pulls out a mere CD. You're angry. Pissed even. On the verge of strangling him, perhaps. You wanted to see that damned squid! But then he pops the disc into the player (don't ask why this is 1995 for a CD that came out in 2011, I don't fucking know) and the first notes begin, and your anger subsides, becoming transformed into a morbid curiosity. Actually, that was already there, what with the squid and all. Anyway, the first notes on the album are from a cello. Played by a woman, who does vocals and is also married to the guitarist/lead vocalist and there are other instruments here and there. Like oboes and stuff. The songs typically are over 7 minutes and have a sort of middle-eastern feel to it, and everything just sounds fantastic. If the releases of the year weren't so damned great, this would have been higher on the list. Honestly, if I had to recommend a new band for anybody (not necessarily Metalheads), this would likely be it. I really think people need to check these guys out.

    Standout Songs: Tongue Stones, Snakehead, Cenotes
  9. Dream Theater - A Dramatic Turn of Events
    What an aptly-named album! No more Mike Portnoy, yet despite him being him being probably my biggest drumming influence, I feel Mike Mangini (the new DT drummer) fits the band better. That's the thing: he fits the band better, as opposed to telling everyone what to to. I love MP's style, but for the first time in a veeeeeeery long time, a DT album seemed like a real concerted group effort, and it shows. There are parts where everybody gets to shine and it isn't as driven toward metal as it had been in the past, which is a hugely welcome change. I just love how varied the album is on a whole.

    Standout Songs: Lost Not Forgotten, Breaking All Illusions, Outcry
  10. Mastodon - The Hunter
    FINALLY, the last album. Typing is annoying. This album rocks, but I did NOT like the change of style compared to what they were doing before. Still sounds great, but I loved the progressive/pseudo-psychedelic/doomy edition of Mastodon as opposed to the doom rock whatever the hell it is now. Which is still great, a fact I cannot stress enough. The songwriting is still much better than many other bands,' but much like what I mentioned in Revocation's album, Mastodon has such a strong (recent in particular) album backlog that it makes it difficult to like the newest album as much when you know what else they're capable of.

    Standout Songs: Dry Bone Valley, All The Heavy Lifting, Curl of the Burl

    Honorable Mentions
    Amon Amarth - Surtur Rising
    Darkest Hour - The Human Romance
    In Flames - Sounds of a Playground Fading
    Lazarus A.D. - Black Rivers Flow
    Decapitated - Carnival is Forever

    I don't feel like writing about those individually, so I won't. All awesome albums, but MAN, In Flames used to be my favorite band and they can't even make it onto my top ten. Still better than "Come Clarity." This was the first Decapitated album I heard and I loved it. Again, all of these  would have made it onto my top ten if it weren't such a strong release year. One thing for me to note is that Arch Enemy released a new album last year and. Um. I only put it on my short list because they're fucking Arch Enemy. I guess that's what it's like to be super rich/privileged. Anyway, those who earned it, earned it. They get medals and trophies and everything!

    SO the first theoretical contender for the 2012 list is about to be released. Goatwhore's "Blood For The Master" comes out on Valentine's Day, and you better believe I am going to buy the shit out of that! They're likely gonna be a big force to be reckoned with, as with their last album ("Carving out the Eyes of God") was one of my top picks in 2009. Christ, I treat this like a fucking sport.

    Anyway, I have said three mouthfuls over here, so I'm shutting myself up.

Friday, February 3, 2012

Stream of Consciousness (Apparently)

Remember how awesome I was doing last post? OOPS. Not anymore. I won't go into too much detail, mostly because I don't feel like it, but I have really switched over to a down cycle.

Wednesday night Judo class was the first class I went to in nearly a week, which included missing a test, a lab, turning in homework assignments, a group presentation, being inducted into the Senate, and all kinds of other things. I've been really trying to motivate myself to do stuff but it is so fucking difficult to. I have been having extreme bouts of insomnia: I usually give up after not sleeping for six hours or so. I had a small anxiety attack in class today. Last night was the first time I wanted to smoke weed since quitting. I didn't do it, but the fact that I wanted to was/is scary to me. I've also been getting really irritable-flying off the handle at increasingly tiny things and violently responding to walls/doors/desks/etc (we learned today in class that is known as displacement). Also having just generally harmful thoughts. I knew I was gonna be coming down from being up, and those who fall from a higher place to a lower one are certainly going to notice the difference more.

I have also been wanting a relationship for the first time in a while. Not with anybody in particular, but I miss having someone close to me that is more than a friend that also means more than a friend or a fuck. But like I have been doing since dating Minh-Chau (especially not now), I'm not letting myself date anybody. It wouldn't be fair to myself, but especially the other person potentially involved, because I am just way too off the handle right now to be in the dating field. It wouldn't be right. So as much as I may want someone, I really just can't put myself through dealing with another person in addition to my crazy ass.

As it turns out, I ended things with both Minh-Chau and Stephanie either directly because I was too depressed or because of complications of depression (with Stephanie, I eventually found out it turned out to be bipolar disorder). It's impossible enough taking care of yourself through those times, and when there's another person you're supposed to be 'watching over,' so to speak, it's downright maddening. So freaking out and breaking up becomes logical, right? Man, looking back on the initial breakup of Stephanie and I makes me just seem like a complete lunatic. I'm so glad that I started getting help for my depression after that. Also that she and I are on good terms now (along with all of my exes, if I recall correctly. That's something I've been meaning to talk about at some point as well).

What was I talking about? Right, wanting a relationship. I've basically told myself that even if I find someone that I develop feelings for and vice versa, I just can't truly feel comfortable at this point in time in my own mental state putting each other in our respective hands, even if they insist that they can/want to take care of me. I want to feel like I'm at least more in control of my bipolar disorder first. The epilepsy isn't as big of a concern for me since that doesn't drive me to the brink of insanity, but it is still kind of an issue for me as well. We'll see how things go.

Monday, January 16, 2012

I'm back, baby!

I'm, happy to be back at school. Anybody that knows me and reads this blog (so what, like all two of you?) knows that this is NOT normal Daniel. This is not normal Daniel at all.

Sure, it could be the fact that I've been in a manic phase of my bipolar disorder, and I'm sure that's got something to do with it. But I've been taking classes that I actually want to take and that I'm actually excited about for the first time in a while. Except literature. Fuck that class. 

But my whole attitude is different. I'm a psychology major, dammit, and I want to be! I'm not just bumbling around in biology land just because I had always expected to be there my entire life anymore; I'm somewhere that is actually making my happy. I find something enjoyable in every class, even the statistics-based ones. I'm not procrastinating on assignments, waiting until the hour before it's due before thinking about getting started. I'm actually getting involved in school events: I joined the Judo club (also I'm taking Judo as a class with my friend Matt, and I love it), I'm gonna join the Senate, and I'm making an effort to not talk shit about my own school anymore. Norfolk is still on its own, though.

I have pretty much hated school thus far. I'm changing that. I'm not gonna be sitting in my room on the Internet anymore. I have been actually talking to people in my classes, making friends. I have been cooking, hanging out with people, going to bed early so I can wake up on time, and just been really working on myself. I also quit smoking weed for good in early December. I'm happy to say I don't miss it. I'll probably discuss what caused that decision to come about in a later post, although I think I told the people that actually read this thing. But it's nice to chronicle it.

I went off on a bit of a tangent there. I've been teaching myself to realize that school, and more importantly life, is what you make of it. And I'm trying my damnedest to make it the best I can. I know it won't be perfect, but I can't fault myself for sitting on my ass anymore.