Yin vs. Yang
Er, Up vs.
Testify, I guess that's what I mean.
In Taoism, the element of "Yin" symbolizes water, death, and generally the dark side, all of which happen to be major themes running through Peter's new album. "Yang" on the other hand is commonly associated with fire, life, and everything good in this world, which seem to be the emphasis of Phil's latest output. Of course, this is exactly where Phil loses big time. I mean, who wants to hear a lame-O feel-good CD anyway. Not anyone here on Paperlate, and certainly not me, let me tell 'ya. After a whole day of work, there is nothing I long for more than putting on an ass-kicking (and frequently heart-stopping) tune like "Darkness" and re-living that horror film atmosphere over and over!! Although I confess sometimes I find myself repeatedly looking behind me to check for invisible monsters while I listen to "Signal to Noise", there is no replacing that thrill of hearing the prince of darkness at his best. My favorite thing about "Up" has to be the booklet, though. It's literally got everything from naked man to exploding bottle, and the coolest part is that you can't find any lyrics. Sure some people say it's all part of a cheap ploy that Peter uses to advertise for his website, but what do they know about artistry? Besides, what do you need lyrics for anyway, the vocals are really not that distorted.
The above comparison readily extends to Phil and Peter's respective touring shows. I know there is no tour planned for "Testify", but even if there was, I couldn't imagine Phil would come up with anything special. I mean all he ever did was making jokes that were not that funny. But look at Peter, he doesn't even tell jokes, he lives them and acts them out on stage. First of all he gets the looks right with that comical-looking flowing white beard (or is it a fashion statement that everyone else have failed to pick up so far). On stage however Peter is simply hilarious. Did anyone else notice that "Jack-in-the-Box" inspired prop that looks like a huge ball substituting for his head? If that doesn't do it for you, there is also
that rehearsal picture of him riding a bicycle as if he was a circus clown. Or how about running around the stage in a transparent ball like a hamster? Sure he might fall over by accident and roll into the crowd injuring some fans, but that just shows his comical genius. I don't know what some fans are complaining about, obviously the entertainment value of this stage show far exceeds the $100 that he is selling the tickets for.
Oh, one other thing. Kevin Holmes, you mentioned you were listening to that band "Elbow". I just couldn't believe your excellent musical taste when I read that. How can two people think so much alike? Since you also seem to be really into post-modern art rock, let me recommend Peter Gabriel's little known demo album "Armpit Noises". I guarantee it will rock your socks off!