November 28, 2007

Shonen Knife Concert!

Shonen Knife!

Shonen Knife Rocks! Yeah!

The numbness in my ears has subsided enough now that I can talk about the awesome time I had last night when I saw Shonen Knife in concert!

The venue didn’t officially open its doors until after the start time that was printed on the tickets, which I thought was pretty lame. In the meantime I hung out in the cold and waited as something of a line formed behind me. I got to talking to some totally cool cats who I hung out with the rest of the night. At one point I took a little peek through the front door window and I could swear that I saw all 3 members of Shonen Knife right there, bundled up in their winter jackets. They walked outside, I assume to take a break before the show, and I said “Konbanwa!” They turned around and said “Konbanwa” back to me. So I had my little fanboy moment with Shonen Knife, and it was cool.

By the time the show had actually stared, it was an hour after the projected time. There were two opening bands, both American. I didn’t know anything about either of them. I expected that they would each play maybe 3-4 songs each, but both bands pretty much played an entire 45 minute set. The volume was set at an uncomfortable level too, and I can’t say I enjoyed having my eardrums pummeled like that before the band I paid to see had actually started performing. After the second band had finished, it was around the time that I was expecting the whole show would have been over with by. I was kind of disappointed that it took so long, so I was hoping that Shonen Knife was going to really rock hard to make all of that worthwhile.

Shonen Knife Rocks!

And did they ever ROCK!

The crowd was looking pretty small earlier in the evening, but by the time Shonen Knife took the stage, the place was full. And it’s a good thing too, because these ladies were just incredible. They performed an excellent mix of new songs and earlier work, including some of my favorites like “Concrete Animals“, “Fruits and Vegetables“, “Explosion“, “Anime Phenomenon“, and the “Sushi Bar Song“. As far as I could remember, all of their songs were in English. Their encore was a cover of the Rolling Stones’ “Satisfaction“. All told they played for about an hour and twenty minutes. I wanted more! The other bands were ok, but I came to see Shonen Knife. I didn’t mind listening to the earsplitting volume when it was cool songs that I knew. So, not to say anything bad about the other bands, but I wanted to hear less of them and more of Knife.

I would definitely like to see them again next time they are in Toronto, even if there’s a change in the band’s lineup. It was really amazing to see these short, funny, Japanese girls jam like the rock legends they are.

Message to my new friends I met at the show who are hopefully reading this at some point: It was great chatting with you two. Shoot me a line when you get a chance!


November 22, 2007

Hot Links Gone Cold.

Besides what I’ve mentioned previously, there’s another reason why I switched webhosts recently. I was really getting sick and tired of people using the images here on their own sites/blogs/message boards/whatever, effectively stealing my bandwidth without giving me anything in return. On the old server, there was no way to stop it, and every time I’d bring the issue up with the tech staff, they would act all dumbfounded, like they didn’t know what I was talking about.

That’s all over with now. I have just set it up so that anyone who is looking at an image that is hosted on but being viewed on another site will be getting a face-full of this:


No more hotlinking from SykoGrafix! Beautiful, isn’t it?

And to anyone who thinks this is unfair, or that I shouldn’t get upset over the issue, to you I say: GET REAL. The issue here is bandwidth theft. The key word in that phrase is “theft“. Theft means stealing, and as you should know from watching Sesame Street, stealing is wrong. Not only is it stealing the bandwidth that I pay for, but it’s also stealing the content that I worked hard to put together to make my website a unique and entertaining web experience. I didn’t put in that work just so some loser could add a decoration to a myspace page or something like that. I put in the work because I want people to come to my site, to read what I have to say, to look at the images in the context that I put them in, and to (hopefully) enjoy it. There’s no reason for any of it to be used for any other purpose, so I’ve put a stop to it, and rightly so. End of story.