CD Review: The Great Commission “Firework EP”

The Great Commission
“Firework EP”
ANGR/Century Media
Tracks: 6

Our Score: 4.5 out of 5 stars

The “Firework EP” is the latest release from the Riverside, California band The Great Commission. The EP features 5 acoustic renditions of songs which were originally included on the bands 2011 full length album titled “Heavy Worship”. The EP also features a beefed up metal version of Katy Perry’s song “Firework”. Being a huge fan of the bands full length album I was really excited to hear what was in store on the new EP. From the opening vocal lines of “When It Rains It Pours” I was completely blown away! Each member of the band shows a whole new side of their music abilities. Lead vocalist Justin Singh unveiled an entirely different vocal styling that what fans are a custom to. Singh voice coupled with guitarist Angelo Razo’s angelic back-up vocals really brought the acoustic tracks to life. The bands upbeat cover of “Firework” wasn’t bad however it just wasn’t to my liking. I think the song would have been more to my liking if they had gone either full pop or full metal. Not teeter between the two styles.
Bottom line The Great Commission is more than just another faith based scream-o type band and the “Firework EP” proves that.

Track Listing:
1.) When It Rains It Pours
2.) Draw The Line
3.) Weight Of The World
4.) Road To Damascus
5.) Came To My Rescue (Be Lifted…)
6.) Firework (Katy Perry Cover)


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Chiller Theatre Expo Spring 2012 Packs a Great Lineup!

The legendary ALICE COOPER will be returning and signing at the Chiller Theatre Expo Spring 2012 edition is coming up on Friday April 27th, Saturday April 28th, & Sunday April 29th.

This years event has many first time convention appearances by some great guests like Dean Cain, Robert Loggia, Parker Stevenson, and Cathy Moriarty!! More info at:

April 27-29, 2012
Friday – 6 p.m. – 11 p.m.
Saturday – 11 a.m. – 7 p.m.
Sunday – 11 a.m. – 5 p.m.

Book Review “Halo: The Art of Building Worlds – The Great Journey”

Author: Martin Robinson
Hardcover: 192 pages
Publisher: Titan Books
Release Date: October 18, 2011

Our Score: 5 out of 5 stars

When it comes to “Halo”, it is one of the most beloved franchises by its very expressive fans.  This book right away has a big shoes to fill.  The book is not only visually amazing but it also covers over a decade of “Halo” ranging from “Halo: Combat Evolved” to “Halo: Reach” to even “Halo: Legends”.  It is a great celebration of the art from the franchise. The book covers everything from characters to landscapes to weapons and includes with sketches and concepts art by many acclaimed artists such as Ashley Wood, Alex Chu, and Frank Capezzuto.

The book features seven chapters spawned over almost 200 pages.  The first is about the “Architects of the Past”.  This chapter focuses on a lot of landscape concept art and includes some never before seen art concepts. Since “Halo” takes place in space, the created for this have endless possibilities and it is great to be able to catch some of that in this images. The second is called “We are Their Instrument” and focuses on the baddies in the game ranging from the Elites to the Jackals to the Hunters.  The third is called the “Tools of Conquest”. This chapter focuses on the vehicles and space crafts used throughout the series. It is something that usually doesn’t get to be enjoyed as much in the game itself. The fourth is called “A Monument To All Your Sings” and focuses on the creatures in the series like “The Flood”.  The fifth is a “Welcome to the Corps” and focuses on the soldiers and weapons in the game from UNSC to ODST to Spartans.  This is easily one of my favorites. The sixth is called “Folks Need Heroes” and focuses on the Spartans kicking some ass in different situations.  The seventh is called “Homeworlds” is the “pretty” chapter focusing on various landscapes and locations.

The book features an introduction from “the face of Halo,” Frank O’Connor.  It is short but sweet and definitely reaches out to “Halo” fans and would get them pumped for this book.  The idea of “Halo” itself just screams “give me an art book”.  There is so much amazing design that goes into the characters, landscapes, weapons and just the “Halo” universe itself.  This book is a true must for “Halo” fans awaiting the next addition to this fantastic series.

Interview with The Great Commission’s Justin Singh

Justin Singh is the lead vocalist for The Great Commission a faith based metal-core band hailing from Redlands, California. The band released its second album in July of this year titled “Heavy Worship”. The album was produced by Andrew P. Glover and is being released via Century Media/ANGR Records. Media Mikes had a chance to talk with Justin prior to the bands performance in Syracuse, NY about the new album and the bands upcoming plans.

Adam Lawton: Can you tell us about the band’s latest release “Heavy Worship”?
Justin Singh:  “Heavy Worship” was released in July on Century Media/ANGR records. It took us 2 years to write this album. We had received a lot of labels offers after our contract had run out with Strike First/ Face Down records but, we were really waiting on god to pick the right label for us. During that time we were just writing music and lyrics that we felt would represent the band. We took time and sat down with every song to figure out what it was saying. We wanted to make sure that the music on the album was just as heavy as the message. That’s the reason we titled it “Heavy Worship”

AL: How do you think this album compares to the bands previous release?
JS: I feel like this album is more of us. The first album was written with the idea of what would we want to mosh to in heaven. It was of just a fun album that had lyrics that glorified god and was just heavy. With “Worship Music” we took the same concept as with the first album but we upped everything. The lyrics on this album are not just lyrics. We wanted the album to be catchy but we also wanted the songs to have meaning and to show that we live the lyrics that we are writing.

AL: What led you guys to sample lines from “The Boondock Saints” and “Dawn of the Dead”?
JS: It will probably sound weird but I feel god speaks to me through movies no matter what the films beliefs. I get so into movies that I start to put myself into the situations. I loved the line in “The Boondock Saints” where Norman Reedus’s character explains why they do what they do. Instead of taking it in the literal sense I took it as there are a lot of evils in our life that need to be killed in order to better ourselves. The other clip was from George Romero’s film “Dawn of the Dead” and I feel that sometimes as people we become dead inside. The first line of that song is “wake up” and it’s about waking up this generation from its mundane life. It’s almost like going from being dead to alive.

AL: Do you have a favorite track off the album?
JS: That’s a hard one. It’s a tossup between “Don’t Go To Church, Be The Church” and “Draw The Line”. Both of those songs mean a lot to me for different reasons. “Don’t Go To Church, Be The Church” is awesome because I feel like from a Christian point of view in this culture were involved in it’s easy to say “We are waiting for revival”. We as people are revivals so the song is about breaking down the walls and the mentality that a church is a building. We can have church really anywhere from a venue parking lot to riding in a car. We can really talk about things anywhere. We don’t have to go to a particular building or place. “Draw The Line” is awesome because even if you are not a Christian you can still relate to the songs message. We all have our own person struggles and sometimes we have to realize that we are the cause of our own problems. Unless we change ourselves our current status isn’t going to change. It could be anything from addiction to being in a bad relationship. It’s on us to bring the better out.

AL: This band has a unique stand on Christianity as compared to other bands in the genre. Can you tell us about that?
JS: I personally only speak from experience. As we have started to branch out and not only do Christian tours but secular tours fans have come up to me and telling me about how they have been told they are going to hell for having tattoos and piercings or listening to heavy music. I was drawn to this music because of its aggressiveness. Growing up I was just captivated by the music. I always wondered why we couldn’t do this for god? When we partnered the two together we saw what happened. There are a lot of people out there especially in the south and across the states that say if you have or do any of these things you are going to hell. It’s not true! Even though we love Jesus we are a very anti-religion band.

AL: Can you tell the fans one thing they might not know about The Great Commission?
JS: (Laughs) I am going to go through them one by one. Angela is the biggest “Star Wars” nerd! She and her brother actually go to “Star Wars” conventions. Victor is a huge Nickelback fan as well as Backstreet Boys and Nsync. Me personally I am the biggest comic book geek. I am really into Marvel comics. Our drummer Alonzo is from Costa Rica and he is really into samba music. He incorporates a lot of that stuff into our albums. Solomon our bass player isn’t touring with us right now because he is at home preparing to get married. As soon as we get back from this tour a few of us are going to be in his wedding.

AL: What are the bands plans for the rest of 2011 and into 2012?
JS: We have been on the road so much lately that our friends back home in California have been kind of neglected. We are going to take December off from touring but we will be doing a few festivals in California and possibly Arizona. In January we are going start pre-production of the new album and start recording in February. From there we will hopefully be back out touring.

CD Review: The Great Commission “Heavy Worship”

The Great Commission
“Heavy Worship”
ANGR/Century Media
Producer: Andrew P. Glover
Tracks: 11

Our Score: 4.5 out of 5 stars

The Great Commission is a 6 piece band based out of Riverside, California. The band is made up of Justin- Vocals, Angela- Rhythm Guitar/Vocals, Robby- Lead Guitar, Victor- Guitar, Solomon- bass and Alonso on drums. The band labels themselves as a heavy worship band that blends the musical styles of hardcore, screamo and punk with Christian themed lyrical content. “Heavy Worship” is the band 3 release and is the follow up album to the bands 2009 Strike First release titled “And Every Knee Shall Bow”.

“Heavy Worship” is relentless in its approach both lyrically and musically. In my opinion the band does a great job blending scream vocals and pop punk sing along choruses which in turn make the album extremely fun to listen to. The 3 guitar attack provides a variety of heavy breakdowns which will surely conjure up the most fierce circle pits. The albums opening track “Don’t Go To Church, Be The Church” lays the foundation for later tracks such as “When It Rains It Pours” and “Draw The Line”. Even though the bands Christian themed messages may be too much for some listeners they do not over shadow the fact that “Heavy Worship” is a great album. and worth picking up no matter your thoughts or beliefs are!

The Great Commission’s “Heavy Worship” is a brutal onslaught of down tuned guitars and thick thunderous bass and drums which combined with Justin and Angela’s spot on vocals make for a really exciting album. No matter what your thoughts or beliefs are do yourself a favor and get this album!

Track Listing:
1.) Don’t Go To Church, Be The Church
2.) The Walking Dead
3.) When It Rains It Pours
4.) Draw The Line
5.) Preaching To The Choir
6.) Weight Of The World
7.) The Prodigal Son
8.) Road To Damascus
9.) The Juggernaut
10.) Reap What You Sow
11.) Came To My Rescue (Be Lifted…)

“Oz The Great and Powerful” Begins Production in Michigan


James Franco, Mila Kunis, Rachel Weisz, Michelle Williams

Topline Sam Raimi’s New Fantasy Adventure

Pontiac, MI., July 25, 2011—Walt Disney Pictures’ fantastical adventure “Oz The Great and Powerful,” directed by Sam Raimi, went in front of the cameras at the brand-new Raleigh Studios in Pontiac, Michigan, on Monday, July 25, 2011, boasting a stellar cast that includes Academy Award® nominee James Franco (“127 Hours”) as the young wizard, Golden Globe® nominee Mila Kunis (“Black Swan”) as the witch Theodora, Academy Award® winner Rachel Weisz (“The Constant Gardener”) as Kunis’ sister Evanora and two-time Oscar®-nominated actress Michelle Williams (“Brokeback Mountain,” “Blue Valentine”) as Glinda, the Good Witch.

The cast also includes Emmy® and Golden Globe® nominee Zach Braff (“Scrubs,” “Garden State”), who will play Franco’s circus assistant as well as lend his vocal talents to one of the CGI creatures in the story — Finley, the winged monkey who accompanies the magician on his journey to Oz; and 12-year-old actress Joey King (“Ramona and Beezus”), who will voice another CGI character in the story, China Girl, who also joins the future Wizard on his excursion through Oz.

“Oz The Great and Powerful” imagines the origins of L. Frank Baum’s beloved character, the Wizard of Oz. When Oscar Diggs (James Franco), a small-time circus magician with dubious ethics, is hurled away from dusty Kansas to the vibrant Land of Oz, he thinks he’s hit the jackpot—fame and fortune are his for the taking—that is until he meets three witches, Theodora (Mila Kunis), Evanora (Rachel Weisz) and Glinda (Michelle Williams), who are not convinced he is the great wizard everyone’s been expecting. Reluctantly drawn into the epic problems facing the Land of Oz and its inhabitants, Oscar must find out who is good and who is evil before it is too late. Putting his magical arts to use through illusion, ingenuity—and even a bit of wizardry—Oscar transforms himself not only into the great and powerful Wizard of Oz but into a better man as well.

The film will be produced by industry veteran Joe Roth, along with executive producers Grant Curtis (the “Spider-Man” trilogy, “Drag Me to Hell”), Philip Steuer (“The Chronicles of Narnia” series) and Palak Patel. The screenplay was written by Mitchell Kapner, (“The Whole Nine Yards”) and David Lindsay-Abaire (“Rabbit Hole,” “Robots”).

Raimi has assembled his own band of technical wizards and movie magicians on the project, which includes cinematographer Peter Deming (“Mulholland Dr.,” “Drag Me to Hell”), two-time Academy Award®–winning production designer Robert Stromberg (“Alice in Wonderland,” “Avatar”), Oscar®-winning film editor Bob Murawski (“The Hurt Locker,” the “Spider-Man” trilogy), veteran Oscar®-nominated costume designer Gary Jones (“Spider-Man 2,” “The Talented Mr. Ripley”), visual effects Oscar® winner Scott Stokdyk (“Spider-Man 2,” “Spider-Man”) and Academy Award®–winning special makeup artist Howard Berger (“The Chronicles of Narnia” series), who will create the looks of several of the unique denizens of Oz, including creatures such as the Whimsies, the Tinkers and the Winkies, as well as the ghastly look of the Wicked Witch of the West.

Production on “Oz The Great and Powerful” will take place entirely on site at the new Raleigh Michigan Studios, the 200,000 square foot sound stage facility in Pontiac, Michigan, once the location of General Motors’ Centerpoint business campus and truck manufacturing plant.

“Oz The Great and Powerful” will be released through Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures on March 8, 2013.