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posts for 2008.

today, a friend of mine gave me and some other people a guided tour through zürich. here, you can see some impressions.

i just read an article on torturing of inmates of, say, guantánamo bay and american prisons in iraq by exposing them to too loud, repeatingly played music, for example songs by metallica, nine inch nails, eminem, etc. this is really shocking, but what made it way worse was the last paragraph, which states that while bands like rage against the machine and massive attack are opposing the misuse of their music, metallica apparently likes it.
first i hoped that the article was somehow wrong, that they meant it in an ironic or sarcastic way. then, i started searching the web, and found a video interview on blabbermouth by 3sat with james hetfield from metallica and an article in the guardian. some quotes:

“if the iraqis aren’t used to freedom, then i’m glad to be part of their exposure”

“we’ve been punishing our parents, our wives, our loved ones with this music for ever. why should the iraqis be any different?”

“part of me is proud is because they chose metallica because he [mohammed al-qahtani] thought he was hearing the sound of satan”

“it is just a thing — it’s not good or bad.”

this already sounds pretty bad, but then i read this and watched the video, from 4:45 starting. sorry, but i really had to think, “what kind of idiot is this guy?!” if you compare listening to phil collins on the car’s radio for a few hours to constantly listening to the same piece of music with a very high volume for a whole day, you’re either a complete idiot or you talk without really thinking.
in any case, shame on him.

posted in: daily life music

in the last two weeks, i attended three concerts:

  • the first one was by the norwegian prog black metallers enslaved in the z-7. the concert was really good, even though enslaved could have played longer in my opinion. unfortunately, the place was pretty empty, which is something enslaved does not deserves.
  • the second concert was by the swedish prog death metallers opeth in the rohstofflager, with the ocean and cynic as support. the guys in the ocean apparently have an urge to move around. i’ve had it so often that stupid kids constantly jump you in the back if you’re standing in the front, but so far i never had it that band members constantly jump in front of you from the front. pretty annoying, somehow. anyway. they were ok. after them, cynic entered the stage. i never heard anything from them, but i heard some people praise them a lot, so i was really looking forward to hear them. well, i’m not sure yet how much i like them, i guess i should listen to their music intensively. but at least they sounded pretty cool. well, then, finally, opeth began to play. as usual, they were simply fantastic. here’s the playlist:
    1. heir apparent;
    2. the grand conjuration;
    3. godhead’s lament;
    4. the lotus eater;
    5. hope leaves;
    6. deliverance;
    7. demon of the fall;
    8. the drapery falls (encore).

    it’s nice to finally have heard godhead’s lament live.

  • finally, i saw the german medieval metal band in extremo. the support was the cologne based alternative rock band the black sheep, consisting of four girls, who did a good job opening the gig. then, finally, i was experiencing in extremo. as a lot of famous bands, the concert was also attended by a lot of annoying kids who gave their best to chase people away from good places. anyway, after losing my very good place in the very front, i found a still good one a bit farer away. i don’t know too many albums of in extremo, mainly older stuff, so i didn’t knew at least half of the material, but i still enjoyed it. (they were also the first band i saw who used pyrotechnics.) but there were also lot of songs which i knew, for example vollmond, wind, spielmannsfluch and ave maria.

yesterday, i did a snow hike in engadine. first, i walked from guarda to lavin, and after that, i continued by train to saint moritz, and afterwards i returned home. the weather was awesome in the beginning, but after some time the sun hid behind some clouds, making it impossible to make good photos of the snow. too bad. the sight was still great, though.

today i went for a short walk to the irchelpark next to the campus where i’m working on. here are some impressions:

another panoramic view on the lake:

a panorama of most of the scenes in the previous pictures:

yesterday, i attended a concert of die toten hosen, a german punk band. the opening band was something from norwegen, and i didn’t really like it. but, opposed to that, the concert by the hosen was good, even though i didn’t knew most of the newer songs. they played a lot of classics, like alles aus liebe, bonny & clyde, eisgekühlter bommerlunder, liebesspieler, schön sein, pushed again, wünsch dir was, zehn kleine jägermeister and hier kommt alex.
the technical gadgets were pretty nice. every band member (except the drummer) had his personal light man, who operated a spotlight aimed on that person. moreover, a set of led arrays hang down above the stage, forming a “broken” monitor, sometimes showing the waveform of the music, or animations fitting to the music.
we got three encores (most of the classic songs were played in the encores), one of them featuring a side blow to berlin, saying that now they’ll play real “jazz” (pronounced as jatz in german), featuring the beginning of eisgekühlter bommerlunder while mimicing jazz.
actually, the concert also had two bad sides. first, as so often, there were some assholes who thought that the smoking ban does not affects them. unfortunately, a common problem :(
the second thing was the great connection of the sap arena to public transportion. there’s a train station very near, the mannheim rangierbahnhof. featuring two wooden (!) platforms and no (!) ticket machine, a huge crowd was squeezed into short fast trains. well, even if there would have been a ticket machine inside the trains (which apparently wasn’t, as it turned out later), it was by no mean possible to reach it. whatever. we were pretty happy as after maybe half an hour the train emptied considerably, allowing us to finally sit down.

spielwiese moved to a new server today. it’s way faster now, as you might have already noticed. unfortunately, the ad rotator plugin which i used to display the random lyrics stopped working, probably it doesn’t like the php version running here. maybe i’ll replace it at some point…

two weeks ago, i did a small round trip through switzerland. first, i took a train to bern:

then, i continued the old lötschberg trail to brig, and then continued to realp, where i did a small stop to wander around in the snow. finally, i continued over andermatt back to zurich.

well, i took these photos already in september, but i didn’t had time to upload them until now. so, here you’ll find some photos of the schlossgarten in oldenburg.

today i cleaned up my blog a bit – at least on the technical side. i wrote a plug-in which encapsulates all my changes to wordpress, so the underlying wordpress is now a standard installation, making upgrading way easier.
moreover, as you might have noticed, i added a login box to the right margin. after playing around in the last days a bit, it seems that my goals can be partially resolved using role scoper. well, not perfectly, but at least to some extend. (so there’s still the need to write the optimal blog software.)

posted in: daily life www