Drug Fairies

I don’t think we’re winning the War on Drugs. Well, if we are, we’re winning it the same way we ‘won’ Vietnam.

It seems to me that too many people either want the drugs or want the easy money associated with the drug trade. I myself am kind of torn on the issue. I hate to see innocent people jailed or killed over what amounts to a personal choice (albeit a bad one). I’d also hate to have the streets filled with junkies sucking up the Medicare and welfare dollars. I WOULD rather see the prisons filled up with pedophiles and rapists and telemarketers. The REAL criminals. But I realize I must be realistic. The telemarketers would truly overcrowd the prisons, and they’re a most unruly lot.

I do have a suggestion that may help. I think, if we’re really, truly sincere about this ‘War on Drugs’ thingie, that we start by carefully choosing what terminology we use when referring to drug dealers and users. We want to send the correct message, right?

First off, I think we shouldn’t be calling anyone a ‘Drug Lord’ because it evokes mental images of some deep breathing character in a black helmet, strolling around menacingly with sinister background music. I think if we’re going to demonize the trade, we shouldn’t glorify such a position, we shouldn’t make it seem in any way appealing. So why not refer to them as perhaps ‘Drug Fairies’? I mean, they do seem to make the stuff magically appear, right? POOF, in a puff of smoke [sometimes literally]. But ‘fairie’ doesn’t sound so. . .sinister. Well, not sinister like I’m a badass. . .just sinister in a creepy ‘My Little Pony’ kinda way.

The government could run public service announcements featuring guys with scars wearing pink tutu’s, dancing around and waving their wands saying “Thay, hello to my little friend”. That puts a whole different spin on the ‘just say no’ schtick, doesn’t it! The demographic for people aspiring to be some sort of cartel kingpin would totally change orientation [no pun].

See. . .brilliant! A bullet-free solution to a global problem. And you heard it here first!

Inhyeongsa/The Doll Master [2004]

Lavish & eerie debut effort from writer/director Yong-ki Jeong makes for interesting viewing from a well worn premise. 5 people meet up in the standard lavish house in the deep woods, to pose for a wheelchair-ridden doll maker. But of course, things ain’t what they seem and of course, you know this ain’t gonna end well. Dolls (some of them people sized!) start moving, bodies start dropping, and there’s a crazy man chained up in the basement. And a creepy ass little girl running around looking. . .well, creepy. You’ll see what I mean soon enough.

Despite plot loopholes and pacing issues, I found this to be entertaining and a little spooky. Excellent music scoring enhances great sets and mediocre acting to tell a somewhat confusing albeit intriguing tale of revenge. Think of this as the flipside of ‘Toy Story’!

Rating: 7 out of 10 Skulls

Dimmu Borgir – In Sorte Diaboli [Nuclear Blast]

I picked up the new Dimmu Borgir a while ago, and after a few listens (as well as the aforementioned live show), here are my thoughts. It’s a good CD, maybe even qualifying as great – but not awesome. The Norwegian sextet’s sound has changed little since the last album other than a heavier reliance on the guitars and drums, less emphasis on keyboards. This is understandable now that black metal legend Hellhammer is behind the kit but personally, I’ve always liked Mustis’ keyboard wizardry and am somewhat saddened to see it diminished on this offering. Vocally, Shagrath still spits as venomly and ICS Vortex has the obligatory 3 songs to illustrate his clean vocal prowess, which has become the trend in the past few albums. Galder and Silenoz’s guitar work lays down a brutal pounding but not much in the way of any kind of lead work. The songs I enjoyed the most are the first video single “The Serpentine Offering”, “The Chosen Legacy” and the instrumental “The Fallen Arises”.

The disc is the band’s first concept album, whose story revolves around a disillusioned clergy who turns to the darkside. Unfortunately, the lyrics don’t really build a story so much as they repeat similar themes. I guess that still constitutes a concept album but it’s nothing like say, Pink Floyd’s The Wall, if you get my meaning.

The marketing aspects of this CD are at an all time, what with four different variations released including a very limited leather bound book (which is the version I chose to go with, making it the most expensive CD I’ve every bought!). Alternately there is the US only release with a bonus song (“The Heretic Hammer”) and DVD, the European release with a DIFFERENT bonus song (“The Ancestral Fever”) and DVD, and finally the Japanese release with yet another bonus song (a cover of Venom’s “Black Metal”). I wouldn’t call this selling out, but it’s definitely in the ‘cashing in’ category. Somewhat frustrating from a fan’s point of view in that all 3 bonus songs are not available on any single release. What kind of concept album has different bonus tracks, anyways!?

Regardless, it’s an excellent album that only slightly disappoints in that it isn’t all that amazingly different from what we’ve heard before. All in all, if you like full pummelling symphonic metal (with more than a dab of Satanism thrown in for good measure), then this may be for you.