December 31, 2011

Plastic Tree: New Year's Teaser for New Single "Joumyaku"

Plastic Tree are in the wake of something like a career relaunch after switching labels, mysteriously teasing fans with a website countdown, and announcing their new single "Joumyaku", set for release on 29 February.

A 30-second preview of the new song and clip was leaked just in time for the new year, and while this band rarely ever really disappoints, "Joumyaku" sounds like a typical Plastic Tree ballad, though not a bad one at all. I'm looking forward to their new and upcoming stuff.

Sadly I could only link you the YouTube clip that's not available in Germany for the usual GEMA copyright fuck-up, but if you know the right proxy sites, go for it. Otherwise check out my MP3 rip below:

Plastic Tree – "Joumyaku" (Preview)

Cliffbuzz 2011: The Year in Review

Almost 2012, but since I'm sidelined either way, it's still time for a little look back at the year on Cliffbuzz with a quick spotlight on the most popular posts, some useless stats, and my own favorite posts of the year.

I didn't see that one coming, but my post about Russian comedian Sam Nickel's voyage to touch 1.000 women's breasts snatched the first place in the most popular posts category with a fabulous 23%, finishing quite a lead ahead of the post that I thought would make it: My little review of Dir en grey's "Dum Spiro Spero" album, which had to give in with a still remarkable 15%. I guess sex still sells the shit like nothing else ;)

Dir en grey also narrowly avoided handing their third spot on the list, which are the samples for their new album (13%), over to my still rising preview of the Dark Knight Rises prologue (12%) – in the end it was a matter of 0.08% and probably would have changed by tomorrow either way!

Number five on the most popular posts list is the first part of my 10 favorite J-rock songs of the year (12%), published in August, but I'm still baffled by how lame that second half of the year was – I couldn't even make a second part to that list. The final three on the list are my Dir en grey Bochum live report (10%), which ended up pretty low for my tastes, my recently posted list of 6 must-have albums of the year (8%), and – surprisingly – my satirical comment on the preview for the new 12012 album (7%), which isn't actually called "Dir en grey," by the way.

On to some demographic facts: About 74% of you are living in Germany, with the US (17%), Austria, the UK, Canada (2%), Japan, Brazil, the Netherlands, Indonesia and Russia (about 1%) also showing remarkable numbers on my visit counter. Thanks to all you guys for stopping by, can't say it too often!

On a less interesting technical note, most of my visitors use either Firefox (43%) or Chrome (30%) to visit my blog, the majority of the rest use browsers like Internet Explorer (13%), Safari (7%) or Opera (2%). The overwhelming lot of visitors also runs Windows (84%), followed by Mac (9%) and Linux (1%), with mobile gadgets like iPhone and Android (>1%) slowly growing in appearance.

Last but not least, let me wish you a happy new 2012 again, and I'll leave you with a handful of my favorite posts of the year:

On a little sidenote, this is actually my 100th post this year, which deserves a happy "cheers!"...see you next year, folks!

A Happy New Year 2012!

It's the first time that I'll be missing most of the New Year's Eve action thanks to a nasty flu, but I hope all you guys and girls out there will have a fun time tonight and welcome 2012 in style!

Let's hope there will be another New Year's Eve next year if Armageddon decides to strike somewhere else ;D

Happy New Year's Dubstep Dirty Dutch Mix

December 30, 2011

The New Sherlock Holmes is A Game of Shadows Worth Playing

It's almost the last day of the year and I went to enjoy a movie for once. Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows. A cool sequel to Guy Ritchie's take on the detective, with the usual abundance of funny dialogue and engaging storytelling.

The second part comes with a charismatic Moriarty, played by Jared Harris, and a beautiful fortune teller, played by uprising Noomi Rapace. Sad we didn't get to see as much of the cute Rachel McAdams this time, but the constantly unlucky Watson made more than up for it. Awesome-as-always Robert Downey Jr. and the hilarious Jude Law have quite a chemistry on screen, and it's good they just kept it rollin'.

With a superb score and over two more action than mystery-focused hours, A Game of Shadows is at least as much fun as the first part was, if not even a tick more entertaining. And Heilbronn of all places (my hometown) is one of the major settings in the movie, even if the actual city doesn't appear. If you're looking for a sweet popcorn movie, you can't go wrong with A Game of Shadows. Check out the trailer below:

Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows – Official Trailer

December 29, 2011

Gackt: Theme Song for New Dragon Age Anime

After a pretty lackluster new solo single ("Graffiti") and some more boring Christmas love songs from his dude band Yellow Fried Chickenz, Gackt finally rises again for a single that could evoke the spirit of awesome songs like "Redemption" or "Returner" for once.

"Until The Last Day" will be released on 22 February and it's the theme song for something some other fanbase is eagerly waiting for: an original Dragon Age anime, titled Dawn of the Seeker (or Blood Mage no Seisen in Japanese).

A new trailer features half a minute of scenes from the anime, which looks pretty good so far, and Gackt's "Until The Last Day", which sounds both fitting and way more interesting and powerful than his latest releases. Check out the sample in a new trailer for the movie below:

Gackt – "Until The Last Day"
(Dragon Age: Dawn of the Seeker Trailer Preview)

December 28, 2011

Top 20 Hotties in Media & Entertainment 2011

2011 is almost over, which means..? Right, can't have too many top lists! Today it's time to raise the voice for our most beloved beauties in TV and entertainment of the year, and while our list could have been much longer, twenty names shall be enough for this one. "We," that's me and my libido, by the way. But now, enjoy and discuss! =)

20. Emilia Clarke

Seen 2011 in: Game of Thrones

Even if you're not into fantasy at all, this year's show highlight Game of Thrones should have been on your regular watch list. Emilia is a reason why: Her performance as the shy-turning-badass dragon mommy Daenerys Targayen was spot on – and rarely fully clothed. We wonder what the future will hold for sweet Emilia, besides the next season of Game of Thrones, of course.

Fun Facts: In 2009, Emilia (24) graduated from the Drama Centre London. Still, she was "only" the replacement for fellow British actress Tamzin Merchant, who was cast as Daenerys, but dropped out of the pilot for no stated reason.

Why we love her: Besides her awesome fighting spirit as Daenerys, her famous character also is such a giving and caring wife – I believe we were not the only ones jealous of doomed Khal Drogo.

Nick Spencer's Glorious "Morning Glories"

Over the cozy holidays, I read through Nick Spencer's fantastic graphic novel Morning Glories so fast that I already regret it. There are two collections of six chapters each available at your favorite book dealer, though 14 chapters have already been published.

Morning Glories tells the story of six brilliant but troubled recruits who come together at a sinister academy, which has its very own gruesome and dangerous secrets. Artistically flawless with fine work by Joe Eisma, the series also comes with a totally entrancing style of storytelling and keeps you craving for the next reveal, until it shocks you with something totally unexpected once again.

Nick Spencer, who is a big fan of series like Lost, takes his baby serious and promises a satisfying run that will see you return to the first page of everything and go "aaah, they knew what they were doing from the start!" – quite unlike his more popular role model. And I'm so excited how everything is going to continue; I just wish the series would be complete already. Absolutely recommended!

Morning Glories – Vol. 1, Chapters 1 - 6 at Amazon
Morning Glories – Vol. 2, Chapters 7 - 12 at Amazon

December 22, 2011

Merry Christmas!

Another year is almost over and I'll be on my way to Heilbronn in a few hours, enjoying my mom's awesome cooking skills and meeting up with the old friends for a week.

I hope all of you are going to have a fun Christmas time. See you next week!

December 21, 2011

The Hobbit Trailer Brings Pure Awesomeness!

After years of waiting and hoping for something to fill the void that Lord of the Rings trilogy left us with, a wonderful day has come at last, and it brings us the first official trailer for The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey!

Two words: totally awesome! This looks just as great and adorable as Peter Jackson's masterful trilogy, with the same cozy and epic feel.

Can't say how much I'm longing for Christmas – next year's, to be sure. Which is when this baby will finally hit the big screens!

The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey – Official Trailer

If the YouTube clip disappears some day, just check out the original post at Trailer Addict!

December 18, 2011

Late Isshi's Final Album "Kureha" Pretty Good!

Kagrra,'s awesome vocalist Isshi passed away on July 18, but that doesn't keep record companies from milking the cow as hard as they can. The latest result: "Kureha", the final album of deceased Isshi under his latest solo moniker shiki∞project. Apparently only two songs of the record were finished before Isshi tragically passed away, which is why friends of him allegedly finalized the album.

That did work out fine in the case of Daisuke, another popular visual kei vocalist gone too early, yet you don't really hear much of any distinctive trademarks from other people on "Kureha". Except maybe during tracks like the fine and sweet "Shiro No Kuro/Kuro No Shiro" or the pretty good "Ai santan" or "Zanki", which could easily have been regular Kagrra, songs. Most other tracks retain a strong feeling of "aww, it's good old Isshi" blended with some of Isshi's own later shiki∞project playfulness.

While I wasn't overly impressed by "Rashazakura", the only shiki∞project single Isshi released before his death, I have to admit that "Kureha" is quite a beautiful final collection. Even when Isshi's unique voice receives the apparently mandatory auto-tune treatment for one song ("Matsuri"), the whole style of the song and the pumping, fleshy disco beat make up for that blunder and turn the song into quite a pleasant affair. "Utsushiyo" also takes a step aside to present some variation with wobbly deep basslines mixed below flutes and koto plucking.

"Kyouen ranbu", "Kousa uta", "Dokuhaku" all fall into the same category: I wouldn't be surprised if those were old Kagrra, leftovers, but they aren't bad at all. The first feels a bit as if Gackt produced and co-wrote it, the second is a sweet melancholic ballad, and the third a typical playful pop-rocker. "Kiran" is the only song featuring more obvious hints of metal and shredding guitars, but it's also not at all devoid of the Japanesque edge always present in Isshi songs. "Sakurasou" is a great, dramatic piece with wonderful melodies and beloved Kagrra,-ness all over it, "Toki" a very vintage, six-minute fade out of the album and the last thing we'll probably get to hear from Isshi.

If you treat "Kureha" as another Kagrra, album, it would be better than the last album the band released. And that's an awesome result for Isshi's final record, which, in the end, at least got as much attention as it deserved by those who finished it. I still miss this guy, because I loved almost everything he did with his band and afterwards, I saw him live on stage in Cologne, and I'm pleased that "Kureha" actually turned out quite lovely, even though the production lacks a bit compared to your usual major album release.

The First 6 Minutes of The Dark Knight Rises Leak, Again!

Several websites like Nerdcore just posted more new leaked material of the first six minutes of The Dark Knight Rises, which we're all dying to see. Oh well, are we? I dunno. It's still seven months until this babe hits theaters, so I just can't convince myself to care yet.

Nevertheless, it's the first six minutes of next year's badass blockbuster and I can't promise it's online for more than a few hours, so check it out while you can. But BE WARNED! As a commenter called deblou66 pointed out, ...

I agree theres no words… that could describe how low the quality of this video is and that ll just spoils the pleasure of really watching for the first time.

The Dark Knight Rises – Leaked 6 Minutes Prologue

You have been warned!

Final Destination 5 Ain't That Bad After All

Felt like watching a movie once again, so I grabbed Final Destination 5 for some easy Saturday night fun. Not expecting much, but having read one or two good reviews, I was quite surprised by how much fun it actually was. Definitely better than the last two bad ones and almost as good as the first, just not that fresh anymore.

First of all, the effects in the movie are dazzling! The beginning with the crumbling bridge has some of the finest visuals in that category I've seen. All the other (creative) death scenes, including yet another painful scene including eyes, look gruesome and realistic enough to haunt you for the rest of the night. Other than those moments you're actually watching a Final Destination for, you get a predictably clichée love story, Miles Fisher delivering his best Tom Cruise Jr. performance, the mandatory hot chick, and a totally great ending that comes with a fun twist for fans of the series.

If you don't expect too much from a movie like this, it's a fun and solid gore fest you won't regret attending.

Final Destination 5 – Official Trailer

December 14, 2011

Boardwalk Empire, Damn You!

Ah, America in its glorious and awful 1920s!

Just finished watching all of HBO's fantastic Boardwalk Empire there is. The season 2 finale did end a few minutes ago here and are you kidding me? They offed the best character! =(

I daresay they'll lose a few watching eyes next season – not mine, though. Damn you guys, was this really necessary? I'm sad now. Still, awesome show. Check it out if you haven't had the pleasure yet!

Boardwalk Empire – Official Trailer

December 13, 2011

New 12012 Album "Dir en grey" Set for March 2012!

12012 would like to inform you that they have returned from their pause, with the last release dating back to July 2010, and that they now sound like a real band at last.

For over one and a half years, the five band members have been devoting their free time to watching and listening to every single Dir en grey song and video ever released, with one certain goal in mind: finally being just like their biggest idols!

Yes, 12012 fans, please rejoice, rejoice. It's true, and it's done! 12012 are now Dir en grey! This is what you have been waiting for. Please enjoy our new promotional clip.

12012 – "Dir en grey"

December 9, 2011

Lindsay Lohan's Playboy Feature Leaked, Turns Out Surprisingly Boring

As various gossip sites are reporting in right now, Lindsay Lohan's entire top-secret Playboy pictorial has leaked early. And even though we knew it would be another Marilyn Monroe-inspired shoot, the whole internet agrees that the photos are so-so at best. What a wasted opportunity.

Then again, wasted also applies to...well, her. Where have the good times gone?

If you feel the need to, check out the whole leaked gallery.

December 8, 2011

6 Must-Have Albums of 2011

Lately I've been listening to a lot of non-rock music, because I wanted to enjoy some other stuff again and 2011 had so much pleasure to offer beyond guitars and drums. So let me share my favorite six albums of the year with you – and be sure to spin the samples I added, because they belong to the finest music I've heard in the last few months.

1. Kendrick Lamar – "Section.80"

Hip Hop – Top Dawg Entertainment

The album that spawned my recent interest in some freaking cool new music. I already wrote about it earlier, and the hip hop community unanimously agrees that "Section.80" is a fucking damn fine album. Even biggies like Snoop Dogg praise 24-year-old rap prodigy Lamar as the next big thing since 2Pac, and deservedly so. Lamar brings on a superb flow and spits clever lyrics about his hopelessly drug-numbed generation, delivering first-class party hits and melancholic tunes as well as old-school hymns like the fantastic "HiiiPoWeR". The album lacks absolutely nothing in variety and comes without any filler tracks – it's been a long time since I've been that impressed by modern-day hip hop, so thanks a lot, Mr. Lamar!



December 4, 2011

Indie Games You Have to Play: Lilly & Sasha Trilogy

Spent my last two weekends totally immersed in old-school RPG action, namely John Wizard's Lilly & Sasha trilogy, consisting of the three fragments Curse of the Immortals, Nexus of Souls and Guardian Angels.

It's a pretty awesome, epic saga well done – props to the developers: Awesome score for a RPG Maker game and a broad and great storyline which gets thoroughly explored in all the three games and adequately finishes off every branch of sidestory in the final part. The characters are loveable, the game's world is vast, pretty and changes throughout the times, and the puzzles are always manageable, though often challenging. Also, the three parts all have their own feel, which keeps things fresh after each cliffhanger.

If you ever feel the need to catch up on a bit of Secret of Mana or Zelda nostalgia, I strongly recommend to grab the first part here (or try the demo first) and you'll want the other two too, believe me.

Lilly & Sasha: Curse of the Immortals – Alpha Preview

The trailers for the games are not the most exciting ones, but the games are way less boring than it may seem.

Kendrick Lamar's "Section.80" is the Greatest Thing Right Now

I can't say how much I'm in love with Kendrick Lamar's album "Section.80" at the moment. It's easily the greatest rap album I've heard in the last three or four years – although I admit that I haven't listened to much rap music lately.

The classic and absolutely gorgeous instrumentals, Lamar's fine vocals and lines (which are stellar, not only compared to the genre's usual bling 'n bitches lyrics), and the whole feel of that album is so packed with hot sound and nostalgic greatness that I want to cry tears of delight.

I could just post whatever song of his and you would instantly see the goodness, but everything I described abvove is probably best visualized in Lamar's video for "A.D.H.D.", which you have to check out below. And then grab the fucking awesome album!

Kendrick Lamar – "A.D.H.D."