The Top 3 Canon-Condensing Songs

What do I mean by canon-condensing?  I mean a song that condenses all of canon (or canon up till that point of the making of the song), or the titles, or some specific aspect of each book.  There are a few of these out there, and I’d like to take a moment to point out my three favorites.  [The preceding paragraph and a very short list just bulleting for future reference what the three songs are, are the only original components of this rather short list.  I’m just gonna quickly run through what I liked about them, and also do some lyric-dumping.]

All of that, including the stuff in brackets was written years ago at this point. And this whole article was leading up to giving the number one slot to someone I do not discuss any more. And doing a top 2 list is kinda lame, even more lame than a top 3 list. So instead, I’m just gonna say a couple things. The two songs left in the list are “Hogwarts Lullaby” by The Veelas and “Cliff Notes Harry Potter” by Alas Earwax! (also known somewhat confusingly as “Harry Potter Cliff Notes”) and here are some words so I don’t have to deal with ending a sentence with a parenthetical statement after a proper noun that ends with punctuation.

Both songs are very different – one being, well, a lullaby, and the other being a rap from that blessed time in history when a nerdy white boy doing a rap was almost novel. But they also both try to summarize a series comprised of thousands of pages in just a few scant minutes. And this is a cool trick I wish was tackled more. While Alas Earwax!’s song is very explicit in its goals, with the original demo version starting with Mr. Earwax announcing his intentions like Vanilla Ice, The Veelas are a little more subtle. “Hogwarts Lullaby” is styled as a simple bedtime song, but each verse is about beasties that will stay away – in order of book. Starting with trolls, and then basilisks and spiders, and so on. Instead of trying to cram millions of words of plot into a song (which was part of the comedic point of “Cliff Notes Harry Potter”), The Veelas focus on a single theme running throughout the series, and follow it from beginning to end.

While I would also welcome more facetious attempts at summarizing the whole series, I also would really like to see more songs tackle one specific facet of the magical world, and chart its evolution. The Harry Potter series is, if nothing else, a journey, and it’d be cool to see more songs reflect that.

Wrock Snob out.

Why We Fight

[Trigger Warning: This post discusses statutory rape, manipulative relationships, dubious consent and non-consensual sex, and an incredibly unequal male-female power dynamic. If you feel the following discussion of this topic may trigger you, please don’t read this article – my rambling is not worth it. I’d also like to take this time and warn that there may be some cis-normativity in this article – while it is of course true that not every man has a penis, the ones I will be discussing today do, though if I had my way, that would not be true any longer. Lastly, I will be using female terms to describe the demographic pool of victims, even though I would not be at all surprised if there are people out there who were affected by these situations that no longer identify as female. This is for ease of this particular discussion, and I hope all my non-binary readers and friends out there will forgive this instance.]

A little over a week ago, it was revealed that a pillar of the wizard rock community, Alex Carpenter (founding member and frontman for The Remus Lupins) was not just, as I had long suspected, an insecure douchebag, but one that manipulated multiple underage girls into relationships and statutory rape with him, as well as relationships with of-age women that were just as manipulative and even less consenting, to a horrifying degree. Then, it came out a couple days later that Luke Conard, one of the two most popular and visible members of Ministry of Magic, was also incredibly manipulative in his relationships with wrock and youtube celebrities, and while he did not technically break the law in the same way Alex did, he is now yet another example of a male internet celebrity using his fame among much younger females to manipulate multiple people into what can only be termed emotionally abusive relationships. Oh, and he also kept all of the money from the first All Caps album, a joint band between him and Kristina of The Parselmouths. So yeah, class act.

While I pretty much immediately reacted on twitter, I’ve waited to write an “official” post about the matter, because it has taken this long for my feelings about this situation to settle down to a level where I can coherently write about it without every other word being “stab”. Honestly, I’m not even sure if I’ll ever not feel that way, but my friendly therapist named Hannibal suggested that I channel my anger and emotions into writing or something else constructive, instead of just bottling it in. Speaking of which, I will do my best to keep this brief, seeing as he’s invited to have me for dinner in a couple hours.

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Top 5 Wizard Rock Music Videos

[Thank you for visiting The Wrock Snob and reading this article! I’d love for you to jump right into the reviewy goodness, but first there is some unfortunate business to take care of. It is not in my nature to tell you specifically what or what not to buy and who to support – I tell you what I thought about an album, and if my tastes seem to align with yours, you might want to heed my suggestions. However, I must take this time to personally exhort that you do not monetarily support the bands The Remus Lupins or Ministry of Magic. The full reasons are unsettling and possibly triggering, so please proceed with caution, but if you want the full details click here. Simply put, it has been revealed that certain member/s of both bands did destructive, upsetting, and highly problematic things. While I can see the value of reviewing art no matter what the artist did on a grand society-level scale, I cannot morally allow myself to condone the financial support of these monsters, nonetheless exhorting people to do so. Now it is entirely possible this copypasta’d retroactive warning was placed on a negative review, making this sidebar somewhat moot, but I still feel it necessary to make these matters clear. Again, for full details and rumination click here, otherwise, please enjoy the article.]

Music videos have been an important part of the music scene for quite awhile now. Originally just footage of a staged performance of the song used as a promotional material, music videos have become an art form in and of themselves. Unfortunately, this is not an art form that wizard rock bands have partaken in too often – though there are plenty of fanmade videos out there that do make up for this lack (and some of them aren’t even barely relevant clips from the movies shittily pasted together)! Still, it’s always nice to see the original artists’ intention for the songs if brought into the visual medium, and we really don’t have much of that in wizard rock.

Now, it’s completely understandable why – music videos take a lot of time and effort, and there are many bands that can barely afford decent recording equipment, much less video equipment. And really, anyone can take their iPhone, give it to their friend Steve, and have Steve record them playing through their song in a garage or a field (it’s always a garage or a field, for some reason) in a few different angles, chopping it up, and uploading the steaming mess to YouTube. The best music videos help tell the story of the lyrics, or reveal new insights into the song, or push the visual medium the same way the song pushes the auditory, and it is music videos in this vein that I wish to highlight.  Starting with…

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LeakyCon Reflections: Rock Night 1

[Thank you for visiting The Wrock Snob and reading this article! I’d love for you to jump right into the reviewy goodness, but first there is some unfortunate business to take care of. It is not in my nature to tell you specifically what or what not to buy and who to support – I tell you what I thought about an album, and if my tastes seem to align with yours, you might want to heed my suggestions. However, I must take this time to personally exhort that you do not monetarily support the bands The Remus Lupins or Ministry of Magic. The full reasons are unsettling and possibly triggering, so please proceed with caution, but if you want the full details click here. Simply put, it has been revealed that certain member/s of both bands did destructive, upsetting, and highly problematic things. While I can see the value of reviewing art no matter what the artist did on a grand society-level scale, I cannot morally allow myself to condone the financial support of these monsters, nonetheless exhorting people to do so. Now it is entirely possible this copypasta’d retroactive warning was placed on a negative review, making this sidebar somewhat moot, but I still feel it necessary to make these matters clear. Again, for full details and rumination click here, otherwise, please enjoy the article.]

Hey all! I’m back from my trip to Portland and am happily ensconced back in my Moonbase On The Moon. I’m going to do a series of shorter articles about my LeakyCon experience, starting with my thoughts on the performances at Night One of Leaky Rock. Just a couple heads-up – I’m only going to be reviewing the acts of wizard rockers/people connected to wizard rock, mostly for the simple fact that due to various circumstances I was late to both Rock Nights and ended up missing the opening acts, which were not made up of wrockers/former wrockers, so if you really were waiting on the edge of your seat to hear what I thought of Kirstyn Hippe or Rae Sterling, I’m afraid you’re gonna be disappointed. Also, I did spend my time actively trying to enjoy the music, and not writing down band order or setlists, so some minor details might be off, and I apologize for that.

Anywho – Tonks and the Aurors! Steph put on a damn good show, playing her classics – “Charlie Weasley”, “I’m An Auror”, “We Are Magic”, as well as a song from her West Wing side project. I would have loved to see her play my personal favorite song of hers, “Lost”, but it’s a song that didn’t seem to get much attention aside from my slavish replays on iTunes, and “Charlie Weasley” is a damn fun song to rock out to with other people. I’ve said it before on twitter, but “Charlie Weasley” is my personal vote for the most righteously fun break-up song in wizard rock, in the same vein of such classics of the genre like They Might Be Giant’s “Pet Name”.

It was nice to see Alex Carpenter on bass, though it cemented my new favorite activity of the con being watching Alex get distracted by shiny things. During the somewhat lackluster (though well-written) Opening Ceremonies skit, Alex played the role of the 11th Doctor, and was just kind of… wandering around on stage, back and forth behind everyone. Then during Steph’s set, a wayward piece of confetti end up slowly falling down from the rafters near Alex, and there was this heart-stoppingly hilarious moment, when Alex just turned his entire being to quizzically follow the trajectory of this single tiny piece of paper, still playing bass all the while.

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And Then I Died vs. And Then I Died

[Thank you for visiting The Wrock Snob and reading this article! I’d love for you to jump right into the reviewy goodness, but first there is some unfortunate business to take care of. It is not in my nature to tell you specifically what or what not to buy and who to support – I tell you what I thought about an album, and if my tastes seem to align with yours, you might want to heed my suggestions. However, I must take this time to personally exhort that you do not monetarily support the bands The Remus Lupins or Ministry of Magic. The full reasons are unsettling and possibly triggering, so please proceed with caution, but if you want the full details click here. Simply put, it has been revealed that certain member/s of both bands did destructive, upsetting, and highly problematic things. While I can see the value of reviewing art no matter what the artist did on a grand society-level scale, I cannot morally allow myself to condone the financial support of these monsters, nonetheless exhorting people to do so. Now it is entirely possible this copypasta’d retroactive warning was placed on a negative review, making this sidebar somewhat moot, but I still feel it necessary to make these matters clear. Again, for full details and rumination click here, otherwise, please enjoy the article.]

[I can’t explain why exactly, but I have lots of feelings about these two songs and how they relate.  The following is all the original writing until you hit another one of these.]

Welcome to another new “feature” on the Wrock Snob that will undoubtedly only last for a single outing!  This is an idea I’ve toyed around with for awhile, where I take two songs, sometimes similar, sometimes not, and I compare and contrast them.  First up, I’m comparing “And Then I Died” by the Moaning Myrtles with… “And Then I Died”… by the Moaning Myrtles…

Huh.

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Wizzies Predictions, Part 1

[Thank you for visiting The Wrock Snob and reading this article! I’d love for you to jump right into the reviewy goodness, but first there is some unfortunate business to take care of. It is not in my nature to tell you specifically what or what not to buy and who to support – I tell you what I thought about an album, and if my tastes seem to align with yours, you might want to heed my suggestions. However, I must take this time to personally exhort that you do not monetarily support the bands The Remus Lupins or Ministry of Magic. The full reasons are unsettling and possibly triggering, so please proceed with caution, but if you want the full details click here. Simply put, it has been revealed that certain member/s of both bands did destructive, upsetting, and highly problematic things. While I can see the value of reviewing art no matter what the artist did on a grand society-level scale, I cannot morally allow myself to condone the financial support of these monsters, nonetheless exhorting people to do so. Now it is entirely possible this copypasta’d retroactive warning was placed on a negative review, making this sidebar somewhat moot, but I still feel it necessary to make these matters clear. Again, for full details and rumination click here, otherwise, please enjoy the article.]

Alright chaps, pretty self-explanatory – I’m going to be giving my predictions for who will win this years’ wizard rock awards, this time it’s the inaugural run of The Wizzies.  While it will be a bit harder to predict this year than previous years, due to this awards “show” being far less known about than the WRPCAs.  Think of it as the BAFTAs to the ‘pedias Oscars.  If the Academy decided to stop doing anything but talking about plays instead of movies, and then completely died, and the BAFTAs replaced the Oscars.  Anyway, there is a markedly different voting demographic this year, so that should be sure to put your office’s Wizard Rock Voting Pool in quite a tizzy.  That being said, there are some categories that are still a bit obvious.  But there are also some categories in which I really have no clue who’s going to end up on top, and that gives me hope.  Also, you may have noticed the number in the title of today’s article – I will be doing a part two of predictions for the final round of voting, this article only covers the first round of voting (NOT including the nomination process, natch).  Aaaaaaaand let’s go for it!

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Don’t BesMERCH Me

[Thank you for visiting The Wrock Snob and reading this article! I’d love for you to jump right into the reviewy goodness, but first there is some unfortunate business to take care of. It is not in my nature to tell you specifically what or what not to buy and who to support – I tell you what I thought about an album, and if my tastes seem to align with yours, you might want to heed my suggestions. However, I must take this time to personally exhort that you do not monetarily support the bands The Remus Lupins or Ministry of Magic. The full reasons are unsettling and possibly triggering, so please proceed with caution, but if you want the full details click here. Simply put, it has been revealed that certain member/s of both bands did destructive, upsetting, and highly problematic things. While I can see the value of reviewing art no matter what the artist did on a grand society-level scale, I cannot morally allow myself to condone the financial support of these monsters, nonetheless exhorting people to do so. Now it is entirely possible this copypasta’d retroactive warning was placed on a negative review, making this sidebar somewhat moot, but I still feel it necessary to make these matters clear. Again, for full details and rumination click here, otherwise, please enjoy the article.]

Also, if you didn’t kill me for the horrendous pun above, that would be nice.  Just a short update for you today guys – a few different wizard rock bands are having holiday sales of one sort or the other, and while it might have made more sense for me to compile a list of them for those of you who for some strange reason don’t want to go hunting through twitter feeds for that one link a couple weeks ago, better late than never, right?  Also, I didn’t get the idea to do this until last night, so…  No jump today, just read straight down!

The Remus Lupins/Alex Carpenter: While the t-shirts aren’t cheap anymore, you can still buy them, so if you live in an area where not much wizard rock passes through, I would suggest you take this chance to get some Lupins merch.  Also, the CDs are on sale, so that’s cool!  Unfortunately, no I Was A Teenage Werewolf, but hey, whatevs.  You can also get a couple Freedom in Panem things, if YA novels with amazing beginnings and absolutely heartbreakingly disappointing endings float your boat.

Justin Finch-Fletchley: Will I ever forgive Justin for choosing a band name that is stupidly difficult to spell?  It remains to be seen.  But what is certain is that this sale is cheap as hell.  And that is a good thing.  All but one of the t-shirts are on sale for 8 bucks – that’s less than Woot or TeeFury!  You can also get cheap versions of his CDs hella digital.  Wait, strike that, reverse it.  Also, I highly recommend the JFF postcards – seriously, it’s that time of the year that you’re obligated to send non-digital messages of non-hate to people, and these little fuckers are cute as hell.  I especially like the panda.

Armoured Bearcub/Lauren and Matt: No, this sale is not just for Armoured Bearcub (actually, only the t-shirt is for sale), but it was a hellofalot easier than writing everything else out.  Anyway, this is the sale you should avoid if you don’t like spending money.  This is not to say that stuff isn’t on sale (and you should take into account the fact that shipping is already factored into the prices), but they have all this insidious combo packs and stuff designed to separate you from your money.  But if you live in, say, Australia or something, then these are very good deals indeed, at least until Matt finds out that the shirt with the eagle on it will grant you the ability to fly once you say the magic words and do the magic dance, thus allowing him to cheaply tour the world.  Also, even if you have no money, the site design is so cute it warrants a visit.

The Butterbeer Experience/Lena Gabrielle: Having retired from wizard rock, Lena now has, in her own words “too much shit”.  You can get cheap physical copies of her CDs (especially cheap since shipping is already factored into the prices), some of her muggle shit, and a t-shirt.  Also, you shouldn’t actually buy anything from this sale, because proceeds will go to fixing her car, and if she doesn’t get her car fixed, she won’t be able to get to LeakyCon, and then I will get to conduct The Final Battle!  It can’t be that hard to wave a stick around for two hours, right?

So there you have it – Depulso Money! Also, many of these sales end within a week or so, so buy soon.  Wrock Snob out.

REVIEW: Jingle Spells 4

 

 

 

[Thank you for visiting The Wrock Snob and reading this article! I’d love for you to jump right into the reviewy goodness, but first there is some unfortunate business to take care of. It is not in my nature to tell you specifically what or what not to buy and who to support – I tell you what I thought about an album, and if my tastes seem to align with yours, you might want to heed my suggestions. However, I must take this time to personally exhort that you do not monetarily support the bands The Remus Lupins or Ministry of Magic. The full reasons are unsettling and possibly triggering, so please proceed with caution, but if you want the full details click here. Simply put, it has been revealed that certain member/s of both bands did destructive, upsetting, and highly problematic things. While I can see the value of reviewing art no matter what the artist did on a grand society-level scale, I cannot morally allow myself to condone the financial support of these monsters, nonetheless exhorting people to do so. Now it is entirely possible this copypasta’d retroactive warning was placed on a negative review, making this sidebar somewhat moot, but I still feel it necessary to make these matters clear. Again, for full details and rumination click here, otherwise, please enjoy the article.]

Here it is, for reals this time!

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Wrockstock Wrecollections – Part 3

[Thank you for visiting The Wrock Snob and reading this article! I’d love for you to jump right into the reviewy goodness, but first there is some unfortunate business to take care of. It is not in my nature to tell you specifically what or what not to buy and who to support – I tell you what I thought about an album, and if my tastes seem to align with yours, you might want to heed my suggestions. However, I must take this time to personally exhort that you do not monetarily support the bands The Remus Lupins or Ministry of Magic. The full reasons are unsettling and possibly triggering, so please proceed with caution, but if you want the full details click here. Simply put, it has been revealed that certain member/s of both bands did destructive, upsetting, and highly problematic things. While I can see the value of reviewing art no matter what the artist did on a grand society-level scale, I cannot morally allow myself to condone the financial support of these monsters, nonetheless exhorting people to do so. Now it is entirely possible this copypasta’d retroactive warning was placed on a negative review, making this sidebar somewhat moot, but I still feel it necessary to make these matters clear. Again, for full details and rumination click here, otherwise, please enjoy the article.]

Third verse, same as the first.  Or, that is, third part, same as the first.  That doesn’t rhyme.  Ah, well.  The point is, this is a more in-depth look at the Friday night mainstage sets at Wrockstock, with a little bit more heavy-hitting analysis than three numbers I pulled out of my rectal cavity.  Do bear in mind that it’s been over a week, the whole weekend is a bit of a hodgepodge of random, disconnected images and sounds, and I have an absolutely atrocious memory to begin with.

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Top 5 Moments of Wrockstock, Night 1

[Thank you for visiting The Wrock Snob and reading this article! I’d love for you to jump right into the reviewy goodness, but first there is some unfortunate business to take care of. It is not in my nature to tell you specifically what or what not to buy and who to support – I tell you what I thought about an album, and if my tastes seem to align with yours, you might want to heed my suggestions. However, I must take this time to personally exhort that you do not monetarily support the bands The Remus Lupins or Ministry of Magic. The full reasons are unsettling and possibly triggering, so please proceed with caution, but if you want the full details click here. Simply put, it has been revealed that certain member/s of both bands did destructive, upsetting, and highly problematic things. While I can see the value of reviewing art no matter what the artist did on a grand society-level scale, I cannot morally allow myself to condone the financial support of these monsters, nonetheless exhorting people to do so. Now it is entirely possible this copypasta’d retroactive warning was placed on a negative review, making this sidebar somewhat moot, but I still feel it necessary to make these matters clear. Again, for full details and rumination click here, otherwise, please enjoy the article.]

1.  Watching two 40-somethings grind to Swish and Motherfucking Flick.

2.  The Parselmouths’ Pillow Fight.

3.  The Remus Lupins’ nonstop parade of songs that kicked you in the face, culminating in a rendition of “Draco and Harry”.  Even better, when they came back to play “Looking For Trouble”, thus confirming my theory that they are legally obligated to close with that song.  Seriously, has anyone ever seen a TRL show that didn’t close with L4T?  I’d love to know.

4.  The Parselmouths beaning people with Magic cards.

5.  Toby playing the Mario theme on bass.

Also, as a bonus, a very quick-n-dirty ranking of the mainstage bands:

1. Swish and Flick – 9.6/10

2. The Remus Lupins – 8.2/10

3. The Parselmouths 6.6/10

Want to know who I am?  I’m the one with the toothbrush and the smile.

Actually, did I pack my toothbrush?

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