Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Changes (Like The 2Pac Song)

Has rap changed or have I changed?
This is the question that I have been asking myself lately as I try to come to terms with the fact that I absolutely hate every hip-hop album that has dropped so far this year.
Is it just an off year? Have the planets aligned themselves in such a way that every artist I care about is on a 2011 sabbatical, in which case I should also be on a 2011 sabbatical from hip hop?
I suppose a more fair question would be: Do I care about hip hop still?
Well, the answer is yes, or else I wouldnt be so pissed off about the lack of quality jams being thrown my way. I'll admit that I was just as hyped up about Watch The Throne as the next guy before it came out. Jay-Z and Kanye on the same album, mixing it up? Can't miss it. And then I download it and the two of them basically shot jizz in my eyes and said your welcome at the same time. What an indulgent piece of shit. If I wanted to hear someone rap about how rich they are for 60 minutes, I'll go put Deion Sanders "Must Be The Money" on repeat and cry for an hour.
Would it be too much to ask for a beat that makes me nod my head?
Would it be too much to ask for a verse that makes me ponder the mysteries of life?
Would it be too much too ask for a producer to shut the fuck up while recording a song?
All of these wonderful things are happening.
15 years ago.
What what Tribe have done?
Probably stay broken up.

Thursday, August 11, 2011

If Jesus Made A Mixtape

2 days ago, as I was drinking my fourth cup of coffee and the caffeine in my body was rising up for a revolt, I had a momentous daydream. I was swimming in the lost city of Atlantis with Katy Perry and Andrew Dice Clay, when I suddenly thought to myself," If Jesus ever made a mixtape, I wonder what would be on it?". It was a simple enough question, but when I awoke from my daydream to "let the dogs out", I couldnt stop thinking about it.
What the French would Jesus put on a mixtape? And, furthermore, who would he be giving it to? Because, y'know, that pretty much decides the content of the mixtape. Would he be making a mix for his dad? Or maybe a lady friend?
These are questions that I could never really know the answer to, so I decided that he would be giving the mixtape to Moses, in a Ten Commandments/manifesto type of thing. He would be giving his Jesus/FDA stamp of approval to a mix of classics.
Now, these couldn't be just any old songs. We are talking about a mythical "greatest songs ever" compilation, worthy of the man himself, or "The Jeez" as his friends call him.( Nobody calls him that, just go with it.) And it would also be a little redundant if these were "the greatest songs written about religion", y'know? "The Jeez" already knows how awesome he is, he doesnt need a mixtape singing his praises too.
So what is on this mixtape, you ask? Well, that is the tricky part. I would probably put all of my favorite songs on the mix, and then tell you that they are the greatest songs ever, as approved by The Jeez, but that wouldn't work. That is what everyone would do actually. make it fair, I've compiled a list of songs so GIGANTIC that only The Jeez could have had a hand in their production. Here we go.
I'm just kidding. There is no way that I can make a mixtape that would do The Jeez justice. Plus, I'm pretty sure that it would just be an ironic mixtape with songs like "Just Like Heaven" and "Heaven Knows I'm Miserable Now on it". I just wanted to get your wheels spinning and see what your idea of a Jesus helmed mixtape would be.
Obviously, it would be awesome. Any ideas? I have plenty.....
El Rey

Friday, September 25, 2009


I need to write more.
This is an official, ref with a whistle, fact.
Writing allows me some sort of relief from my mundane existence, although I imagine my problems amount to the same as every one else's mundance existence.
No money? Me neither.
Work at a job that makes you want to smash your head in with a watermelon like Gallagher? Join the club, brother.
My only problem is that instead of taking out my frustration on other people or yelling like a normal human being, I bottle it all up. That's how I roll. And yes, I'm aware that this is unhealthy. So I take to the keyboard and tell some jokes or stir up a spirited debate, it's how I'm wired. I find solace in solving other problems and mysteries of life, while my laundry list of complaints hang out on the line to dry. Welcome to the land of Rey. It ain't Oz.
For instance, a mystery that is completely unrelated to me is this:
Why don't more people worship The Replacements? (The band, not the movie. Wasn't sure if that warranted clarification.)
Anyways, what's the deal with that? Paul Westerberg is arguably one of the greatest songwriters of the last quarter century and he also makes me feel like he is talking about my life in a way that not very many musicians do. Take a great love song like "Can't Hardly Wait". The lyrics remind you of every first date or love of your life that you've had, and the bass line gets stuck in your head the instant that it starts. Plus, it doesn't hurt that there is an entire movie based around this song. Cue Ethan Embry's face. Or Jennifer Hewitt's boobs. Your pick.
I guess my solution to this problem is to tell you to download their greatest hits and if you like the songs (WHEN you like the songs!), go find some of their albums - like Pleased to Meet Me, and listen to them. Repeatedly. Especially if you've had a crappy day. They make me feel better about myself and I think they might do the same for you.
Now that I've addressed a problem that has nothing to do with me, I feel a little bit better. See, that's a healthy vent. Take that Dr. Phil.

El Rey

Friday, July 17, 2009

Cool no more

I used to be cool. Or at least I operated under the guise of "cool". But as the years go on, I feel my coolness waning. Let me explain.
My television watching habits used to consist of Dodger games, music video programming, and the graphic violence and language of HBO television. Pretty sweet, right? Well, since I've settled into fatherhood, my new television watching habits consist of The Penguins of Madagascar and the old Pink Panther cartoons that they show in constant rotation on Boomerang. This is a sad development. I am able to sneak in Dodger games while my son yells or after he falls asleep, but other than that, I've had to get my enjoyment from watching this retarded show called "Yo Gabba Gabba". I love it. My son doesn't even like it and I still make him watch it. It has a gay tracksuit wearing guy named DJ Lance on it and he dances around with a bunch of giant puppets to basically the coolest kids show soundtrack ever. Hell, it may be the coolest tv show soundtrack, period.
Now you may ask yourself," How lame can Rey be if this is his new favorite show?" And the answer is : Pretty lame.
But, it WAS created by the lead singer of the Aquabats, one of my favorite bands, and it DOES have the greatest celebrity guests besides Conan Obrien. What was the last kids show you watched that had Jack Black being an asshole on it and Chromeo and the Shins as the guest band? Exactly.
And an even lamer point about "Yo Gabba Gabba" is that the Chromeo performance of that timeless classic known as "Wash Your Hands" is like my favorite song of the year. Well, one of them. It is the funkiest shit on TV.
So while I may be uncool, at least I have the comfort of "Yo Gabba Gabba" to get me through the rough patches.
And I'm pretty sure this blog about uncoolness just turned into an infomercial for the decided very coolness of "Yo Gabba Gabba".
I am so strange.

El Rey

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Facebook and the usefullness of Cussing

At this point in time, everyone I know but my wife and penis have their own Facebook account. And it's okay that neither of them have joined the craze, seeing as how I hang out with both of them everyday, in one of their cases, literally "hanging out" all day.
You see, Facebook has replaced Myspace in the grown persons' world as a tool of communication between friends. Myspace is like the puberty version of Facebook, so everyone over the age of 21 has migrated to Facebook, which is supposedly more "adult".
Of course, Facebook is NOT more adult. In fact, for some reason, it seems like maybe the "adult" version of High School. I have basically added everyone I knew in high school to my friends list, with the ommission of a couple superchoads that I wanted to punch in the nards back then and probably would today also. My friends and I bullshit about entirely random stuff online, in between going to work and attending school. People get pissed off at each other, and instead of fighting like normal friends do, they delete the person from their friend list. This, of course, is the ultimate burn, to get "deleted". You've got to be a real slimeball to delete someone from your friends' list. Is this sounding at all childish and high school-like?
I thought so. And yet, I am addicted to it like the crack addicts that hang out behind the Shell station by my job. It is a fun way to keep in contact with people that live far away, and you are able to talk more shit to a person than normal, because well, it's online.
And that brings me to my second topic, which involves cussing.
It has recently come to my attention that I curse profusely and, in some instances, reference feces more than a standard guy is supposed to. I have been attempting to cut down on this, since I have a 2 year old around me that enjoys copying everything I do, including when I scratch my balls. But I am having a terrible time! I love to cuss. It makes everything sound funnier and more important.
For instance, if I were telling you that a new cd is good, would you be more prone to obtain the cd with this glowing endoresement: " That is a wonderful cd."
or this one: " That cd fuckin' kicks the balls out of me!"
Of course you would pick option 2. Here is another example: If I were asking you to share a donut with me, would you rather I ask you this way: " Might I please have a donut?"
or this way: " Give me one of those sweet ass mutha fuckin' donuts please!"
Redundant right? Everyone picks option 2. My point is made. Everything sounds better with cussing.
I suppose it will remain a work in progress.
Until next time - Mutha Fuckin' Peace Out!!

El Rey

Monday, May 4, 2009


A few days ago, I received some extraordinarily terrible news. A wonderful person and friend of mine, Jill St. Onge, had passed away suddenly while traveling in Thailand. This is something that greatly saddened me and I supposed that the only thing I could do would be to write something about Jill.
I've had a case of writer's block for the past couple of weeks, hence the lack of new blog activity here, but I have been flooded with memories and funny stories involving Jill throughout my high school career and my friendship with her during those times. In high school, and for a couple of years afterwards, I had a couple of different crews that I hung out with. I had the "Dude" crew, which consisted of my retarded guy buddies and generally involved lots of noogies and alcohol, and I had my "Girl" crew. Now, most guys don't get a Girl crew to hang out with, but for some cool reason, I was very lucky to have a crew of ladies that I considered my buddies. And we did pretty much any sort of cool activites that you can think of together. We went to every concert imaginable, hung out, and basically had an awesome time every day.
Jill was one of the girls in my Crew, and she was about as kick-ass of a person as I had ever met. She knew about all kinds of music, so right away we decided to be pals. She helped me organize senior parking lot dances before school, where we would skank to the rudest ska known to man before school started.
Jill also, for some odd reason, thought that I would do very cool things in this world, including becoming a famous radio dj. She went so far as naming me DJ Reynaldo (very witty) and making me my own cd's to distribute as a graduation present. I always thought that was the coolest thing ever and hopefully, she knew that.
Anyways, I suck at tributes, but I wanted to everyone to know that Jill was awesome, if they didn't already know.
I lost one of my crew, but I know Jill is still listening to that beautiful ska beat in the sky.

El Rey

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

New Music and Musings

In the 2 weeks since my last post, I have:

(a) Become a mutant blessed with the gift of flight

(b) Learned the Secret of Nimh

(c) Got my first pubes


(d) Lost five pounds by shitting my brain out with the flu

If you guessed (d) the flu, you win a lifetime supply of Beanie Babies, courtesy of my weird brother-in-law!
But seriously, don't get the flu. It changes how you look at a toilet. Forever.
Moving on, there is an insane amount of music that is available for your listening pleasure right now, so I thought I'd highlight a few of my current favorites in the hopes that you might check something new out.
1. Silversun Pickups - Swoon
The second album by these Southern California favorites is, in my opinion, even better than their first album. They continue to use the quiet/loud approach, following the blueprint that bands like The Pixies and,later, The Smashing Pumpkins perfected over thier illustrious careers. But they have their own sound as well, creating dreamy landscapes before rocking your balls off with their fuzzed-out choruses. Please check this album out and sample their new single," Panic Switch" at

2. Depeche Mode - Sounds of the Universe

By now, you'd think that you know what a Depeche Mode record is going to sound like. Big, sweeping synths with a little bit of guitar. Dave Gahan's robotically soulful voice. Lots of memorable choruses. And you would be right to think that this album has got all of those things, because it does. In spades. But it's also much less predicatable sounding than the last few records that the Mode boys have released. The beats are set to different tempos, Martin Gore sings back-up quite a bit more than he usually does, and there are about 5 remixes for every song circulating the internet right now. And all of these things are wonderful, by the way. This is one of the best albums Depeche Mode has put out since their classic,"Violator". Give it a spin and see what you think.

3. Phoenix - Wolfgang Amadeus Phoenix

Rocks out with some punchy guitars and just the slightest bit of synth, French-style. Awesome album.

Also keep an eye out for new albums by 311, eels, Incubus, dredg, Gary Numan, AIR, Green Day, Wolfmother, and Fischerspooner. All of these bands will be dropping in the next couple of months, so be ready for plenty of sweet jams this summer.

Until next time,

El Rey