Sunday, January 31, 2010

Trouble With You

Music is poetry, plain and simple. I can't tell you the last time I heard this song, but it's been following me around all day like a shadow. Enjoy these lyrics :)

The brightest star on a cloudless night
Some kind of miracle, almost empty sky
Infact as sure as God is a monkey's dream
And ate that mushroom and believe what he sees

Trouble with you is you always wanna find the fire
Sittin' warmin' your hands by the fireside
Trouble with you is you're always lookin way outside (way outside)
Oh why not enjoy yourself by the fireside?

Just as the bite of the blade wakes the absent mind
There's time to dream and there's time to open your eyes
She said, just as the warmth of a kiss brings the love alive
It's right here by the fire where the answers lie

Trouble with you is you always wanna find the fire
Oh when you're warmin' your hands by the fireside
Trouble with you is you're always lookin' far and wide (way outside)
Oh why not enjoy yourself by the fireside

She said why you always lookin', always lookin'?
She said why you always lookin' outside?
She said

The trouble with you is you're always lookin' for the fire
When you're warmin' your hands by the fireside
The trouble with you is you're always lookin' far and wide (way outside)
Oh why not enjoy yourself by the fireside? (way outside)

The trouble with you is you're always lookin' somewhere else (way outside)
Oh then what you see there beside yourself
The trouble with you is you're always lookin' for the fire (way outside)
Oh why not enjoy yourself by the fireside?
Oh why not enjoy yourself by the fireside?
She said, oh why not enjoy yourself sittin' by the fire?
She said
The trouble with you
The trouble with you


Saturday, January 30, 2010

Five Musicals I Love

Moulin Rouge- A lot of critics skewered this movie, but it's one of my favorites, musical or otherwise. Ewan McGregor is a dream to watch and hear, and Baz Luhrmann makes visually stunning movies. A winning combination, in my opinion.

Rocky Horror Picture Show- I've watched this on Halloween every year since long before I realized just how fucked up it truly is. My favorite number is the highly underrated "Hot Patootie". You can make fun of me all you want, but Meatloaf OWNS in that scene. Though I love this movie, I rarely make it to the end. It drags, and the stage/pool scene is weird and kind of out of place to me.

The Music Man- Perhaps I'm partial because it was the first play I performed in as a teenager, but The Music Man is great. Wholesomeness, good songs, and the charismatic Harold Hill. I knew for the first time I wasn't alone in my Music Man geekery when I saw the entire "Shipoopi" number made into a Family Guy routine. Seth McFarlane also nods to Music Man with Lois as the piano teacher, just like Marion.

Hedwig and the Angry Inch- Because how many other musicals do you know that have a transgendered rockstar from communist East Berlin? Best song? Sugar Daddy, hands down.

Phantom of the Opera- A classic that never goes out of style. Solid story, beautifully composed music, need I say more?

Honorable Mention: The Fantasticks.

What is your favorite musical?

Friday, January 29, 2010

Missing Metallica Fan Found

I was absolutely appalled when I was searching for Metallica news online last night in preparation for my radio show and stumbled across the above article. I realize it's called an opinion column for a reason, but this man is still a reporter and should know better. The basic gist he states in the column is that Morgan Harrington, the woman who was kidnapped and killed when she left a Metallica concert late last year, is to blame for her own disappearance and death. Should she have used discretion and not hitchhiked home with a complete stranger? Absolutely. But we've all been 20 years old, and sometimes our judgement is poor. The author accuses her of wanting to be a part of the "party crowd". I've been going to concerts since the age of five, and I would hardly call myself part of the "party crowd" because I enjoy going to shows. This woman was murdered, but shame on her for making a bad decision?
Absolutely uncalled for.
What do YOU think?

Thursday, January 28, 2010

2010 Grammys

So, the Grammy Awards show is being aired this weekend, and I will celebrate by not watching.
Since the invention of this magical creation known as the internet, I've been able to watch the highlights and recaps of crap that I don't want to sit through for three hours of my life.
If my beloved Dave Matthews Band wins Album of the Year for Big Whiskey and the Groo Grux King, I will shed tears of joy and search for the clip on YouTube.
The other "artists" in this category? Beyonce, Lady Gaga, Taylor Swift, and The Black Eyed Peas. How on earth did DMB end up in that mix?!?! How many of those artists even know what a gramophone is?
Beyond that, Green Day and Linkin Park would be excellent wins in their respective categories. But in all actuality, the awards will probably go to Nickelback or someone equally awful that I couldn't give a damn about.
I guess I must be getting old, because all I can think about regarding Grammys is: "Remember fifteen or twenty years ago, when you'd camp out in front of the television, waiting to see your favorite artists accept their awards and perform?"
Now? Not so much...

Are any of you going to watch? Any favorites you want to see win?

Wednesday, January 27, 2010


Three lovely shows for me to attend in the month of March, and the fun is nonstop. These are all at Revolution, so kudos to whomever does the booking, as you take all of my money.

Henry Rollins Wednesday, March 3rd
Rollins is doing is spoken word deal once again. This will be the fourth time I've seen him in action, and I laugh heartily every time. Rollins is intelligent, worldly, and not afraid to admit he doesn't know it all.

Dropkick Murphys Saturday, March 6th
The Murphys is quite a rowdy show, as was demonstrated the last time they came to town and I got crushed on the staircase of the venue by a bunch of drunken jackasses. Still, the need to do a jig outweighs my fear of getting an ass kicking to the tune of "(F)lanigan's Ball".

Badfish: A Tribute to Sublime Wednesday, March 17th
St. Patty's day with Badfish? Yes please. Normally, I'm not a big fan of "tribute"bands, but these guys pack a house full of Sublime fans and play a high-energy set. Nothing is as good as the real deal, but Badfish certainly do an excellent job of trying.

Monday, January 25, 2010

Live Nation/Ticketmaster Merger

One of the biggest changes in the history of live music is taking place, as the Live Nation concert promotions and Ticketmaster have finally been approved to merge into one large business: Live Nation Entertainment.
About ten or so years ago, there was viable competition from other concert ticket sellers like Cellar Door Productions and SFX Entertainment. Those companies were bought out by Live Nation, thereby eliminating said competition.
Many in the industry, myself included, are disappointed to see this merger. It's hard to have a fair and level playing field when the big dogs bullied everyone else off the playground.
Some artists and talent managers are hopeful that this merge will mean increased opportunities for package deals like touring and merch combined with physical album releases.
As a music fan, it's hard to accept, but you feel almost helpless. If you "protest" by only going to concerts run by independent promoters and venues, you are only punishing yourself, as you miss out on the biggest shows by bands you love to see perform live and are more than happy to support.
How do YOU feel about this merger, and what it means to you?

Sunday, January 24, 2010


In previous blogs, I've discussed the idea that songs and albums are associated with time periods in your life and memories. Not all of these memories, however, are positive. Sometimes you are faced with having to give up an album you love, because the memories associated with it are just too painful.
Ryan Adams' disc "Love Is Hell" was released the year I got my heart broken. I listened to it every night as I cried myself to sleep. I have tried on several attempts to listen to it since that year, but it is just too difficult a listen because of what I was going through at the time.
David Gray's "White Ladder" used to be a favorite of mine, but after a rebound went sour, it started collecting dust on my shelf, too.
Dave Matthews has a song from his solo album called "Stay or Leave" that perfectly captured my life at the moment in time it was released. I am happy to report it didn't suffer the same fate as the others. After several years, I was able to put it back in rotation.

Do you have an album you are no longer able to listen to, and why?

Sunday, January 17, 2010

You'd Think That People Would've Had Enough of Silly Love Songs

It was suggested to me that I write a blog about songs for people in love. Here are a few of my favorites, bearing in mind that not everything about love is sunshine and roses:

The Aquabats!-"Red Sweater!" About as simple a love song as they come. It's fun, it's cute, and it's true love: Lead singer MCBC is so enamored, he doesn't care if they live together in a garbage can!

The Beatles- "I've Just Seen A Face" Falling in love for the first time never seemed so sweet.

Blink 182- "Josie" A girl that brings her man Mexican food and doesn't get jealous? Sounds like love to me.

Weezer-"Only in Dreams" Rivers Cuomo sings about being in love with a girl that may or may not reciprocate. A feeling we can all relate to.

Dave Matthews Band- "I'll Back You Up" Dave Matthews knows how to write a love song. In this one, he recognizes that love and compromise is not always easy, but he will back up the woman he loves no matter what.

Foo Fighters-"Dear Lover" The subject of this song is in love, and wondering if the object of his affection feels the same.

Incubus-"Summer Romance (Anti-Gravity Love Song)" The wordplay is just beautiful and poetic in this song.

Jeff Buckley-"Lover, You Should've Come Over" An apology for the mistakes he made in a relationship gone wrong, and a desperate plea to make amends.

John Legend-"Stay With You" A love that has seen many trials, but in the end remains strong.

Monkees-"You just May Be the One" Plainly said, the subject of the song knows what he wants in a woman and may have found it.

What are your favorite songs about love?

Friday, January 15, 2010

Video Game Soundtracks

When I began this blog, my only rule was to write about music. I didn't want the focus to be strictly on music news, or genre intensive. Just any observation I have about music and the way it impacts my life. So it should come as no surprise that I'm set to ramble about the joys of video game nerdery, and the music that accompanies it. Recently, my husband and I pooled our Christmas money together and purchased a Wii. I've been playing a silly and addictive game called "Animal Crossing: City Folk", and the music in it changes hourly, and sets a tone for the time of day. Morning and afternoon songs are light and fun, and as the day wears on, the songs become more mellow and subdued. Kris asked me if I knew ths music by heart, and I do, from playing another one of the titles I used to own for Nintendo D.S. I told him it wasn't that unusual, and betted he could recite the music from the Mario Bros. games, as any child of the 80s probably can. Sure enough, he started that theme for Super Mario Bros. 1 that we know so well. He challenged me to reciting the music for the castle stage, and I knew it immediately.
There are video games that are notorious for getting their catchy tunes stuck in the gamer's head. Sometimes, as in the Grand Theft Auto titles, the songs are ones you recognize from "real life".
In the same vein, you can't tell me after several hours straight playing Guitar Hero, that you don't hear "War Pigs" on the radio and have nightmares about flipping the neck of your guitar up fast enough to get star power.

What are your favorite video game songs?

Thursday, January 14, 2010

RJD2 at The Social

RJD2 is a turntablist, setting up at least three at a time when he performs live. The man born Ramble John Krohn can mix beats with the best of them. He is also so much more than just another dj, and last night's performance proved this. Trying to pigeonhole him in a particular genre is an impossible task, and why bother? The music and performance speak for themslves. RJ opened behind the decks, performing several songs before moving to the front of the stage to greet the crowd and play guitar with a live band that consisted of a keyboardist, drummer, and bassist.
Some of the songs he played and sang with the band are arrangements that are traditionally known on his albums as sampled and mixed. It was a welcome change to hear them arranged for a full live band.
Highlights included "1976" and "Good Times Roll Part 2".
RJ played several songs from his first three albums, intermingled with tracks from his new album The Colossus, set to be released this Tuesday.
The mood of the show would change from silly to serious, bouncing between a costumed RJ playing with electronic toys to plainly dressed RJ singing songs and playing guitar. It was lighthearted and passionate all at once, and everyone in the crowd kept up with the energy, singing back to him and dancing to the beats. The cheering was infectious, with one person on the floor starting a series of "woos" that would spread throughout the club.
The show never dragged, the set flowed nicely and th epacing was perfect.
The encore was just one song, the one my friend Luci and I had been waiting to hear all night: "Making Days Longer". We stood leaning on the stage looking upward as RJ brought out his acoustic guitar and played with sweetness and sincerity.
Overall, this was a fantastic show. We traveled from Fort Lauderale to Orlando and back in one night, and I wouldn't change a thing!

Monday, January 11, 2010

Musicians as Restauranteurs

What is it about the marriage of food and music that drives so many musicians to open their own restaurants?
Are they following the old saying "Eat, Drink, and Be Merry"? Or is it more along the lines of "What else can I do that I can slap my name on and earn more money?"
The most recent addition of a restaurant co-owned by a musician is in my own backyard: Rock n' Roll Ribs in Coral Springs, FL. RnR Ribs is owned by Iron Maiden drummer Nicko McBrain. (Insert drummer joke here.) Though I have not had the opportunity to eat there, a glance at the menu shows standard BBQ joint fare at reasonable prices.
Everyone from Justin Timberlake to Chris Cornell has tried their hand at the restaurant biz. Some, like Jay-Z's 40/40 Club, have been extremely successful. Others, like Britney Spears' NyLa, were not.
I'm always game to try new restaurants. Food is something I love almost as much as music. The question is, is the food as good as the gimmick?
Have you ever eaten at a celebrity-owned restaurant? How was it?

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Elvis Costello

New Wave, Rock, Jazz, Pop, Country, Blues, Opera.
Musicians don't often genre-hop with the best results. Many are scoffed at for even making the attempt. Elvis Costello, however, does it with ease; and makes no apologies for it.
The man born Declan Patrick MacManus is a charismatic adventurer. He is unafraid of exploring different sounds, and works by the classic mentality that an artist should release an album every year or two, as was popular with jazz musicians when he was growing up in the 50s and 60s.
Costello would give any contemporary lyricist a run for his money, crafting songs that conjure up vivid images for listeners. The songs include topics most can relate to: betrayal, ("Poor Napoleon") pop culture overexposure, ("American Gangster Time") fakes, ("Tear Off Your Own Head: It's a Doll Revolution") and love, ("Let Me Tell You About Her") among other things.
With a career that spans more than three decades, 35 studio albums, and various collaborations, it is always exciting to see what Costello will do next.
What is your favorite Elvis Costello album?

Saturday, January 9, 2010

For Your Consideration: Give These a Listen

Whether you're familiar with these albums, or they're brand new to you, this is what's been in my music playing device this week:

Danger Mouse and Sparklehorse Present: Dark Night of the Soul
This album would sound fantastic with Brian Burton (better known as Danger Mouse) and Mark Linkous (Sparklehorse) alone, but the deal is sweetened with appearances from Black Francis, Iggy Pop, and film director David Lynch; among others. Lynch also provides photos for an accompanying book, which can be purchased at Listen to the album streaming here:

The Avett Brothers, I and Love and You
Brothers Seth and Scott hail from North Carolina, fusing hints of bluegrass and folk into their likable songs. An easy listen, great for a road trip.

Late! Pocketwatch
Dave Grohl playing all instruments, on a cassette-only release with poor audio quality.
Not quite Nirvana, and pre-Foo Fighters, some of the songs on Pocketwatch would later be re-recorded with a full band and released as b-sides.
A must have for Grohl devotees.

What are YOU listening to this week?

Friday, January 8, 2010

Elvis Presley's 75th Birthday

Elvis Presley would be turning 75 years old today, were he still alive. Would he have aged gracefully, had he lived to 75 years of age? Would he still be producing music, as many of his contemporaries continue(d) to do? I understand the importance of Elvis's role in the landscape of popular music, much as I understand the influence Nirvana had on my generation. Unlike most people from my age group, I never fell under the spell of Nirvana. Elvis was never at the top of my list, either.
I can appreciate some of the music in his discography, but I was always more of a Beatles girl, personally.
Maybe it would have been different if I was a teenager during this era. The entire family circled around the television set, watching Elvis swing his hips wildly, ushering in a new way of thinking and creating controversy and a generational divide.
Few artists in the history of music have captured the hearts and minds of individuals quite like Elvis did. Like with any long forgotten memory, however, we often choose to remember only the best parts.
Happy Birthday, Elvis. It's shame we'll never know what could have been.

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Music for Television

As a lifetime fan of music, I notice even when it is supposed to be in the background. I applaud when it is evident that a song has been carefully chosen to match the mood and tone of a scene in a television show. When a music director does not take the time to think the score through, it can be distracting. The most classic example of this is the overuse of Leonard Cohen's "Hallelujah". Countless scenes of death and tragic loss are often scored with this song, to the point of predictability.

While watching Heroes, I often find myself thinking aloud how appropriate a song is matched to a certain scene. This is especially true for flashback scenes, which incorporate songs that were popular during the era, such as a scene from the 60s featuring Del Shannon's "Runaway".

During Monday's episode, my husband and I noticed several characters quoting song titles and lyrics conversationally, as part of their dialogue.

Finding references to music hidden within television shows is like unearthing hidden treasures.

Which television shows do you think have the best soundtrack?

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Weird Collaborations

Some strange collaborations have surfaced in the pop culture lexicon.
Late last year, when word got out about the Lil Wayne and Weezer team-up, I cringed. I was befuddled when I saw rock n' roll legend and Led Zeppelin frontman Robert Plant team up with bluegrass singer Allison Krauss.

This oddball collaboration takes the cake: Stephen King and John Mellencamp are working together on a musical. Yes, you read that right. Like singing and dancing....on a stage. In a theatre.

Who do you cast to star in a King and Mellencamp-produced musical? Why, Elvis Costello and Kris Kristofferson, naturally. Throw Sheryl Crow and Roseanne Cash into the mix, and you have...theatrical gold?!?

The musical, called Ghost Brothers of Darkland County, will also be made into a triple-cd and book set. No release date is cited.

What do you think are the best and worst collaborations?

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

This is the One About Hip Hop

Clearly, I'm a rock girl. For me, it's all about my tattoos, Chuck Taylors, and a penchant for guys with shaved heads and goatees.
This being said, every well-rounded music aficionado occasionally ventures outside of their comfort genre.

Here are a few of my favorite hip-hop albums:

The Roots Homegrown! The Beginner's Guide to The Roots 2005
Notable tracks: Essaywhuman, Pass the Popcorn

Kanye West The College Dropout 2004
Notable tracks: Never Let Me Down, Two Words

Mos Def The New Danger 2004
Notable tracks: Sex, Love, and Money; The Beggar

Hangar 18 The Multiplatinum-Debut Album 2004
Notable tracks: Beatslope, Barhoppin'

Outkast Big Boi and Dre Present...Outkast 2001
Notable tracks: Rosa Parks, Elevators (Me & You), Spottieottiedopalicious

Ludacris Word of Mouf 2001
Notable Track: Saturday (Ooh! Ooh!)

Honorable Mention: Common Be

If you notice, everything I listed came out in the 2000s. Don't get me wrong, there's nothing wrong with the older stuff: Naughty By Nature, Boogie Down Productions, Snoop Dogg, Public Enemy, Beastie Boys. I was into hip-hop before 2000, but I find the stuff that I keep coming back to has come out in the last ten years.

What are your favorite hip-hop artists and albums?

Monday, January 4, 2010

Reunited and it Feels So Good

2010 is the start of a new decade, and a reason to start fresh. But it seems many bands are taking this new decade as an opportunity to move forward by turning their past into the future.
Alice in Chains and Creed both reunited within the last year or so, releasing Black Gives Way to Blue and Full Circle, respectively. They will both continue to tour this year.
This series of events paved the way for several other 80s and 90s bands to follow suit.
Stone Temple Pilots announced in January 2009 that they would be touring and recording a new album, their first since 2001's Shangri-La Dee Da. The new album is set to be released this spring.
Blink-182 will continue to tour in 2010, and release their first new album since 2004.
Faith No More is currently touring Europe and Australia, though there are no definite plans for a new album. The Pixies are gearing up to record a new album this year, their first since 1991's Trompe Le Monde.
Most recently, Chris Cornell took to his Twitter account on New Year's Day to announce that Soundgarden has officially reunited and will be touring. Though there is talk of a b-sides box-set, no release has been planned yet.
So with all of this reuniting, will we see the decline of mish-mashed supergroups such as Audioslave and Velvet Revolver?
Who has yet to get back together that you are hoping will do so?

Sunday, January 3, 2010

The Hep Cat Boo Daddies

I recently wrote a bio for my friends the Hep Cat Boo Daddies.
I had the pleasure of meeting the boys in the summer of 2007, when they participated in 93 Rock's Battle of the Bands competition. I had seen them play several years earlier at City Link Music Fest.
They are not just talented musicians, they are stand up gentleman as well.
Visit their website for more information and upcoming shows.

The Hep Cat Boo Daddies are a South Florida based 3 piece band that will knock your socks off with their killer tracks.
More than ten years strong, the Boo Dads defy traditional genre conformity by fusing hints of blues, rock, punk, and rockabilly.
Sean "Evil" Gerovitz plays it cool onstage, laying down smooth bass grooves, while Randy Blitz pounds and preens behind the drum kit, providing the beat that is the heart of a Boo Dads song.
Singer and guitarist Joel Dasilva plays with a passion and soul evoking the greatest blues legends, with precise tone and intensity.
Their first album, Long Time Comin', has a more traditional blues influence. Their second, hotrodsexgod, explores their rock sensibilities while still staying true to the sound they established.
Currently working on their third effort, the Boo Dads continue to play electrifying live shows throughout the state of Florida, sometimes traveling to open for national acts such as: William Bell - STAX Records Legend, B.B. King, Jimmie Vaughan, North Mississippi All-Stars, ZZ Top, The Strokes, Johnny Lang, Lou Ann Barton, Ronnie Earl, The White Stripes, Lee Rocker from the Stray Cats, The Black Keys, Rev. Horton Heat, Johnny Winter, Edgar Winter, Buddy Guy, The Fabulous Thunderbirds, Steve Winwood, The Black Crowes, Leon Russell, Bang Camaro,Galactic, The Smithereens, Steven Tyler, Richie Supa, and many more.
A favorite among local publications, widely in part because of their loyal fanbase, The Hep Cat Boo Daddies have been honored as Best Band in South Florida multiple times.

Saturday, January 2, 2010

Four Fantastic Frontmen

Being a fantastic frontman isn't about being a pitch-perfect vocalist. It isn't about your personal style, or your dance moves. It isn't about your makeup or lack thereof. There are just some men (and ladies, too, but that's for another blog) that were born to perform. Here are four of my favorites:

Scott Weiland, Stone Temple Pilots/Velvet Revolver: This man is the pure embodiment of rock n' roll, for better or for worse. All glam, leather pants, and bare-chested posing; Scott Weiland is a show unto himself. Oh yeah: he can sing, too!

Maynard James Keenan-TOOL/A Perfect Circle/Puscifer: MJK is the anti-frontman. Preferring to stand in the shadows at the back of the stage when he performs live, audiences are often left squinting trying to make out his shape. Still, you can see his body rock back and forth, totally engulfed in the music as it swirls around and consumes him. As haunting a voice as any in the last fifteen years.

Daryl Palumbo-Glassjaw/Head Automatica: Daryl Palumbo is known for his dual roles as a screaming prince of post-hardcore in Glassjaw, and an electro punk as the frontman of Head Automatica. His vocals range from gutteral growls to emotional and straightforward pop. To see him live is to experience raw emotion. Doubled over as though he's in too much pain to go on in Glassjaw, or skipping about the stage and strutting in Head Automatica, Palumbo is a wonder to watch.

David Draiman-Disturbed: Draiman grabs hold of his audience with one hand and slams them against a wall of sound with the other. His commands to the audience to follow in his lead by yelling "WE ARE ALL DISTURBED!" do not fall silent on any crowd. Fists pumping in the air, Draiman asks everyone to release their anger and negativity at the concert instead of taking it out on others or carrying it inside. The audience obeys his every gruffly spoken word.

Friday, January 1, 2010

Five Albums to Look Forward to in 2010

1. Vampire Weekend, Contra, 1/12/10 - Their sophomore effort, Contra is a follow-up to the band's widely successful self-titled debut. As a general rule, the cliche is that a band flops on its second record, especially when its first contains catchy tunes like "A-Punk" an d "Oxford Comma". The first single, "Cousins", is not too far of a depature from their first record.

2. Linkin Park, Title and release date TBA- Linkin Park has teased their upcoming album as being everything from the biggest record they've ever done, to something that, according to Mike Shinoda, sounds "brand new". That's pretty vague. Looking forward to it anyway. These guys are finally starting to evolve as a band

3. Stone Temple Pilots, Title and release date TBA- Stone Temple Pilots have reunited, and will be releasing their first new album in ten years. Will lead singer Scott Weiland be able to stay clean and sober long enough for his fellow bandmates to be able to tolerate him for an entire tour?

4. Butch Walker, I Liked It Better When You Had No Heart, 2/23/10 Butch Walker is an incredible pop producer that has worked with everyone from Weezer to Pink. When he releases his own albums, they are hit or miss. 2006's The Rise and Fall of Butch Walker and the Let's-Go-Out-Tonites is a solid record of glorious pop excess that tells a clear story from beginning to end. Butch's self-depricating humor comes across like a breath of fresh air. Hopefully this album will be the same.

5. Blink-182, Title and release date TBA. Blink-182's jokey and juvenile pop-punk took a darker and more serious turn on their 2003 self-titled album, the last one released before the band broke up in 2005. Reunited after drummer Travis Barker's brush with death in a plane crash, the band seems excited to be working together again. Will the new songs be fun and silly, or more mature?