Blu-ray Review “Heavy Traffic”

Actors: Joseph Kaufmann, Beverly Hope Atkinson
Directors: Ralph Bakshi
Rated: R (Restricted)
Studio: Shout! Factory
Release Date: July 16, 2013
Run Time: 77 minutes

Film: 3.5 out of 5 stars
Extras: N/A

“Heavy Traffic” is writer-director Ralph Bakshi’s follow-up to his controversial animated adult film “Fritz the Cat”, which is a hard act to follow. It is quite an odd and spacey film, definitely something that came out of the 70’s for sure. It is definitely not for everyone but is still super entertaining for fans of Bakshi’s work and like most of his films it is chock full of sex and violence. Bakshi really has a unique visual style to his animated projects.  They are like nothing else that I have ever seen.  This is the first time that this film has ever been on Blu-ray, thanks to Shout! Factory. It is not the perfect release we are all hoping for after the fantastic recent release of Bakshi’s “Wizards” on Blu-ray but I would recommend for those hardcore animation fans.

Official Premise: Heavy Traffic, the second feature from writer/director Ralph Bakshi (Fritz the Cat), combines a quick-edit pace, a frenetic story line and an array of eye-popping animation and live-action styles. Michael, a young artist who lives with his neurotic mother and two-timing father, escapes the absurd and often ugly side of life on New York’s tough streets by satirizing its rich yet wacky characters in wildly entertaining cartoons. From the gruff homeless and wisecracking prostitutes to gun-toting gangsters and corrupt cops, Michael’s world becomes an outlandish kaleidoscope of shocking images and horrifying events that are either a testament of his wild imagination or a reminder of the strangeness of reality.

Shout! Factory is releasing “Heavy Traffic” on Blu-ray with a pretty decent 1080p transfer in 1.67:1 aspect ratio.  The film doesn’t look perfect but that is the feeling that I get from Bakshi’s films.  They are not perfect.  They are low budget and it looks as good as it can.  The mix of animation and live action is presented well and the colors are sharp. The audio track comes with an also decent  DTS-HD Master Audio Mono track.  It works for the dialogue and the film’s music. Doesn’t blow you away but does the trick. Unfortunately, there are zero special included to complement this Blu-ray release. I would have loved to seen Ralph Bakshi do up a commentary track on this release but I doubt he had any involvement at all.

CD Review: 3 Inches of Blood “Long Live Heavy Metal”

3 Inches of Blood
“Long Live Heavy Metal”
Century Media Records
Producer: Terry “Sho” Murray
Tracks: 12

Our Score: 2.5 out of 5 stars

“Long Live Heavy Metal” is the newest album from the Canadian heavy metal band 3 Inches of Blood. The bands 5th full length album was produced by Terry “Sho” Murray and is being released via Century Media Records. The group consists of Cam Pipes, Justin Hagberg, Shane Clark and Ash Peason. Together the band blends a variety of both new and classic metal techniques while still forging new ground.

Vocalist Cam Pipes could be describes as half Halford and half Dickinson as his vocals ring out in the highest of falsetto ranges while tracks like “Look Out” and “Storming Juno” are drenched with dual guitar chugging, and sweeping solo passages.

Though a majority of the songs on “Long Live Heavy Metal” have a more vintage sound and structure, Tracks like “Dark Messenger” and “Die for Gold” feature a unique blend of the two which makes the latest release from 3 Inches of Blood quite an entertaining listen.

Track Listing:
1.) Metal Woman
2.) My Sword Will Not Sleep
3.) Leather Lord
4.) Chief and the Blade
5.) Dark messenger
6.) Look Out
7.) 4000 Torches
8.) Leave it on the Ice
9.) Die for Gold
10.) Storming Juno
11.) Men of Fortune
12.) One for the Ditch

 

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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…)