Hardcore, Protest, Tigana

So instead of whining today (thank any power you can, am I right?) I am gonna be discussing some stuff I’ve really enjoyed lately.
First off is the Hardcore History Podcast by Dan Carlin. What can I say? It’s a look at the human dark side of history, often fascinating, always engaging, and frequently scary when one considers what societies are capable of doing. It’s an infrequently released show by podcast standards, but the high quality more than makes up for that in my opinion. It’s possibly the best podcast I listen to, with no qualification necessary. I’ve been following it for a while now, but I don’t think I’ve mentioned it here before. Amazing stuff.
Alright, the next is for the metal heads out there. Protest the Hero is this wonderful Canadian band that’s sort of hard for me to categorize apart from saying ‘metal’. The music is chaotic, occasionally to the point of being a difficult listen. Their vocalist, Rody Walker, kicks serious ass, in a Devin Townsend-esque range of singing, screaming, growling and screeching. These guys won’t be for everyone. Compared to some of the more mild metal I like (Kamelot, Iron Maiden, etc…) they are pretty extreme. Lyrics are dark, but their middle two albums especially are conceptually and sonically beautiful, those being “Kezia” and “Fortress”. They crowdfunded another one, but I missed out on the campaign so I’m eagerly waiting to get it in October when it drops.
Finally, in the field of fantasy literature, we have Tigana, by Guy Gavrial Kay. I finished reading this standalone fantasy epic about a week ago and thoroughly enjoyed it. Tigana is a perfect example of a book that feels big that is also very tight, dense with meaning, flowing with vibes, and rich in entertainment value. And it all fits in one volume, which is a virtue I clearly feel needs extolling more than once. This story is just a hair younger than I am, having been published in 1990, but it embodies a lot of things about modern fantasy. Except for the voice and style (and possibly the ending) I think it’d be great fun for people who enjoy G.R.R. Martin’s A Song of Ice and Fire. A highly rewarding read.
So, that’s my positive point. Have a good one, people.


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