Friday, 11 November 2011

We Interrupt This Broadcast | 11-11-11... Or Is It?

No, it is. I'm just being difficult.

That said, here on The Speculative Scotsman, 11-11-11 is going to be all about the things that could have been. If not the good times we were going to have - I mean, who am I kidding? - then the timely reviews I was going to put up today, if I'd only written them.

Thing is I haven't. You folks will just have to go in want of my thoughts on the direct-to-DVD gimmick horror movie named for the date, because I couldn't stand it.

I had hopes for 11-11-11. Not exactly high hopes, but nonetheless, I don't despise the SAW films - of which Darren Lynn Bousman directed the second, the third and the fourth - and I genuinely do adore Repo! The Genetic Opera, which I understand was something of a passion project for the talented young filmmaker.

Would that 11-11-11 evidenced even the barest suggestion of the undeniable passion Bousman brought to his macabre musical... his modern-day Rocky Horror. Alas no, not so much. It is truly a dreadful film, all ham and no jam, and half an hour of it was all the other half and I could take the night before last.

As to last night, well. We went to see Opeth and Pain of Salvation, but mostly Opeth, at the HMV Picture House in Edinburgh, which I was disproportionately pleased to see still rather resembles an old cinema. So we took our seats - oh, seats! - bought some beers and sat back to enjoy the music... which we did.

Failing the 11-11-11 movie review - in fact failing the movie, never mind the review - I was going to post a bit about the three hours I spent nursing a pint of tepid Tuborg while Opeth and Pain of Salvation played last night instead. I was going to write about how I do not disagree with Ryan of the inimitable Battle Hymns blog when he says that the lack of growlage was pretty darned disappointing.

Much as I adore Opeth's latest album Heritage, which this tour is of course in support of, the band played a fair selection of their beloved back-catalogue too, and even these songs seemed... not blunted, exactly; tempered might be a better way of describing it. And tempered is really the last thing I want Opeth to be, especially the older Opeth albums I hold so close to my heart.

Also: no Blackwater Park. What the crap, guys?

Still, had a great night, and a great day beforehand, sampling Orkney ales in the Gillie and wolfing down a plate of delicious veggie haggis in Henderson's, with the very best company to keep me company. Happy birthday, hon!

Anyway, I'm sure I've more to say about Opeth - and maybe one day I'll say some of it! - but my fallback plan for content on TSS today was also comprehensively scuttled this morning.

It was the postie what did it. Isn't it ever?

He only brought me my copy of The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim.

So... give me a hundred hours or so, and we'll talk, alright? :)

Happy 11-11-11, everyone!


  1. Sounds like you had a similar Opeth concert experience to my own...except with seats. I knew I was getting older when I started to prefer to sit at a live show.

    It looks like they are maintaining the no-growlies rule for the European Tour as well.

    I'm extremely jealous you have Skyrim. I wants it sooo bad, but I know my productivity will be kaput if I get it.

  2. Marduk/An0mand3r Rak314 November 2011 at 01:37

    OPETH! Nice, Niall, nice. Alas I am a bit apprehensive that there will not be any growlage as well. I've seen them twice before and they were absolutely brilliant but yeah no growls? Ohs noes... but I'm sure I'll still enjoy the show in Sydney on Dec 16 \m/

  3. @Ryan - You're exactly right. I've done a grand total of nothing since starting in on Skyrim... but I have no regrets! Except those guards I killed by accident when I was a werewolf. That was unfortunate.

    @Marduk - Didn't realise you were a fan, man. I should have known! Actually I read a couple of gig reviews before the thing on Thursday, and it could have gone either way by the sounds of it; with either quite a heavy set, full of former favourites and good old fashioned growlage, or the more mellow hour and a half Ryan and I seem to have seen. So I hope your luck's in, sir. :)

  4. Marduk/An0mand3r Rak315 November 2011 at 01:27

    Aye, I'm a big metal fan. I really do dig Heritage, but it certainly isn't a metal album. I definitely prefer Blackwater Park and Still Life as well as Damnation and Deliverance... I appreciate that Opeth is evolving and are free to do as they please, but this album seems more like "The Mikael Akerfeldt Project" than Opeth to me. But yeah, musically they are brilliant and I am sure to enjoy the show regardless, but some death vocals would be nice. I'll report back after the fact and let you know what transpired.

    In the meantime - way too many video games all be released at the same time! What's up with that? Is it the pre-Xmas and northern hemisphere winter bonanza? I understand that and it makes perfect sense but the weather is just starting to get real good here in Australia and these games are keeping me from enjoying the great outdoors! (The weather this time of year is also why Opeth always tour Aus in Nov/Dec). Oh and it's also sending me broke :-) Oh well

  5. I managed to catch Opeth when they were touring for the anniversary of the Blackwater Park tour (their first international tour). They played the whole album as their first set and then did a retrospective as their second set hitting songs from every album after with commentary in between. It was a stellar show.