Dove White Crest; Blackened Hell Within

A chilling draft into an upward gust;
I've received time to heal my broken wings.
Still sore, I climb the winds
Gripping your back with talons, I've given you momentum.

Yet, granted this is speculation, your newly gifted ears have not done much hearing.
Further into my feathered chest you nuzzle your beak.
Fervently, I flutter and flap, attempting to might up our collective weight.

And again, here descend Planetary whim.
Collision course set, a denial to jump ship.
I will take in this toxic atmosphere.

Rocky, clouded breath in.

The searing cold of space curses my thin.

Keepin' them Crazy Knuckles Busy for February.

Everything is about to get real.
Jesus, the blessed black hole, is pulling everything in with gravitational singularity.

Get ready.


Off the Stage and Onto the Floor and Out to the Streets

The raised platform is a peculiar invention.
Like television it allows the viewer maximum enjoyment when the entertainment of choice makes its presentation.
But also, like television, it presents what is called "the fourth wall", through which it seems interaction becomes impossible.

Now, no one really has the want or need to interact with their documentary on blackholes, so I feel that there are certain instances where that which is desiring your attention should keep the fourth wall up and work within the bounds of which are present.

But then you get music, something to relate to, something that you identify with.
A concert provides you the opportunity to take that interaction of listening and experiencing you'd normally have on the internet, cd, mp3, and taking it a step further.
It's your chance to experience a unique, emotionally charged performance that can never be replicated, to dance, to sing along, to be in camaraderie with the crowd, or to express your appreciation to the artist in person.

Though for some strange reason, that stage where musicians and thespians present their art, that platform of ground creates a aesthetic which ascends to godhood those who walk on it and procures attention and respect from those who reside down below.

The attitude The Chariot holds at their shows is what, I feel, artists striving to make a connection and a difference with their music should uphold.

The artist is no greater or worse than anyone else.
In fact, we're all artists in our own ways, and we all make art possible by contributing to different creative ventures.
This is why I appreciate bands that talk and hang out after their shows, friend and IM people who support them on Facebook and online forums, bands that play on the floor and set up webcams for online shows, bands that give away music, fans who mosh hard, without hate, who pick each other up, who offer their houses and cars for the sake of a show or a tour, venues without age limits, sincere staff, and put on free or cheap shows.

Through music, we gain unity not commonly achieved.
It's a form of communication that transcends all five senses and every language.

If there's a stage, dive off of it.
If there's a microphone, wrap arms over shoulders and share it.
Sell an album, make sure you've given one away first.
Illustrate your heart, appreciate all the rest.

This one goes out to Destroy Nate Allen, The Heartside Hooligans, Levi the Poet & the White Collar Sideshow, The Chariot, Dan Smith of Listener, Self-Proclaimed Narcissist, Otto Nobot, Debtor, Sanhedrin, A Plea for Purging, The Ongoing Concept, Josh and everyone at HXCChristian.com, Hal and Blackhole and every artist, local or otherwise, who've portrayed their artistry with humility and genuity. The ones listed I have personally been blessed by with their music and, for some, friendship, even if it is limited to the internet or a one-time conversation.

No thanks to bouncers who are jerks, hate moshers, pretentious metalcore bands, pretentious musicians, pretentious anyone/thing, and venues that charge over $20 a ticket for no great reason other than to make excessive amounts of money.


"Educate Yourself in the Things You Believe in..."

You can buy these DVD's at http://illustramedia.com/

I began my search for purpose with truth and proof in mind.
I have not been let down at the profound amount of evidence existence holds.


Don't Let Your Friends Define You

Most everything you come into contact with will influence you to some degree, regardless of your willpower, interest level, or awareness of such influence.
Breakfast, history class, Lil' Wayne (yes, I am frequently and unfortunately subject to having Weezy stuck in my head from time to time), strangers, friends...
Whether we soak them in, resist them, or are simply present, characteristics of our surroundings affect us every second of the day, consciously or unconsciously.

It seems the only two ways of controlling how you're influenced are by directing the influence with a conscious reaction (it is nearly impossible to control what discreetly enters your subconscious), or by simply avoiding or changing the influence in itself (which could be considered a conscious reaction in itself, but I digress).

I've had to figure this out over the years battling lustful and depressive tendencies, as well as for a general attempt at maintaining my overall integrity.

It has been, and most likely will be for the remainder of my life, an ongoing battle to preserve my integrity, to separate from the separation of All That Is and Shall Reign Eternally.

At times the gravitation of giving in causes me to make split-second decisions to close my eyes during certain parts of a movie, cease contact with certain people...

One of my all-time favorite bands, The Killing Tree, is something I have limited myself from listening to almost at all.
At first it relayed an intense amount of sympathy, giving my sadness and misanthropy bit of understanding.
But as I continued to listen and digest the vain anger and musical progressions that wordlessly portrayed my hopelessness, I realized the band to be a force to disassociate myself from.

It's like a near-permanent fasting; (I say "near-permanent" because when describing my favorite style of -core music theirs is an example I give sometimes) the absence of that band strengthens me in my overall positivity and when I remember the times it was in my life I can turn my need for peace over to the Prince of the very essence and feeling.

That band is the reason I limit my musical repertoire to Christian artists (and I use that term in the plainest of sense; "Christian" is not something I would add to a subgenre), positive artists, instrumental artists, and artists that inspire nostalgia or produce a certain musical style I find inspiring.

This choice limits me just as a vegetarian may be limited: socially, I become distanced to a degree, now lacking a major commonality; personally, I find, at times, an unsatisfiable appetite.
This choice empowers me just as a vegetarian may be empowered: socially, I find solace within my moral minority; personally, I am doing the best and right thing.

I strongly encourage a self-evaluation on the effect of everything in your life, it drove me to make one of the greatest and most influential choices within my own life.


With Gritted Teeth and a Depraved, Persistent Sympathy, Thank You for Fighting with Me

The new year has thrown quite a bit at me, I must say.
To be honest, I'm pretty tired of talking about myself but I'll try to keep what's on my mind short.
(Maybe for a whole month match every post about myself with a post about something else!)

From bewildered to begrudged, I struggled to both fight for and against my pride and desires.
Then I played into a classic Screwtape strategy of taking the situation as an injury.

False self-denial to pretentious prayers;
The violence of outer-silence, the ambiguity of the term "enemy".

But, after much discussion and unnecessary screaming;
With dear peers and at the Willing Victim, my King.

And of course, Mommy Comments.

I've come to find an ease in compromise.

I'm hoping to delve into the Word more as the winter grows colder.
As the snow dumps down, I'll press on to think of things outside of me.
I feel like the Lord is telling me not to live in consistent depression.

I'm going to take Him up on that.

Thanks to the anonymous, acquaintance, and familiar faces for sifting through the emotional nebula and find the floating vessel, stranded, but never alone.


Imagine an internet federally censored for any reason it deems appropriate.

This is not okay.

I'm off the internet for 24 hours.



No Matter my Sentence, the Gift is One I Appreciate

Whether I make a future out of it or not, 
I love playing, recording, composing, arranging, producing, mixing, sharing, listening to, discussing, and interacting with music; 
Writing, reading, singing, yelling, referencing, lyrics; 
Reading, writing, and giving interviews; 
Stage dives, road trips, scrobbling, documenting, expressing, album art... 

I've never appreciated something like a form of communication so much.

I am blessed with this symbiosis.


So after pitching that ridiculously long post to my mother, she told me that it'd be stupid to put everything into the band and not work.

She then gave me a list of places to apply for, considering that Albertson's never called me back.

I guess in the end, it was childish for me to think my plan would've worked out to pour all my time into music.
It doesn't pay, it doesn't work out on a resume, it won't make success, and my bandmates have not even followed up on the amount of work they said they'd pull.
We had potential to practice three days this week, we did a few hours out of one.

So in conclusion, I'll continue to do what is expected of me; anything else would be selfish.
I'll continue to give my time, my effort, whilst putting to rest my emotions.
There's no room for their resistance.

I've been living disillusioned, dreaming of a round planet whilst being pulled over the edge.

I don't know why I blog anymore, this is all stupid.
Sorry for making my personal journal public.


its so hard to start again, when your holding truth in the palm of your hands.
its so hard to start again, when that truth shoots you in the back of your head.


i love the beatles


One More Shot (and We're Talkin' Guns (or Arrows, or Darts, or Something) Here, Metaphorical Guns to be Precise)

Longest post ever?

It's been weird to not post in a week, but I've been doing a lot of thinking and a lot of watching tv because my laptop is broken and I realize now how much time I waste on it. But I digress to the thinking...

This last Thursday I had a job interview at Albertson's to be considered as a courtesy clerk.
This was somewhat of a big deal for me, considering I've been actively applying for jobs since October (I haven't kept any sort of accurate count, but I've applied to at least two dozen different businesses).
The interview went very well, in both my perspective and the store manager's (allegedly; he said it was "a REALLY great interview).
However, I received a call from him saying that he did not hire me, but rather four other candidates.
He said not to lose hope, and that if two of them decide they don't want the job, he'll offer me the job again.

Oddly enough, after all the hopeless filling out of job applications and all the excitement gathered from my family and friends about this opportunity (as well as their supposed sympathy and sorrow for the results of the phone call), I found a great deal of dissonance within myself about the entirety of the situation.

When the call came I was playing drums in my basement, alone for about an hour.
When it ended, I picked the drumming right back up for an hour or so.

When I put the sticks down I came to a realization: I don't really want some job, especially not as the miscellaneous labor force for a grocery store.
I know only two things that have mattered to me with any amount of consistency over the years:

Jesus, and the gifts and talents to which He instilled in me.

I've been pushing very hard to get a job, but not for either of those reasons.

Having a job would provide an ability to pay for my car insurance and gas, work experience, extra money for extra things and savings, and pleasing my stepfather, who was the original instigator to my job search and is the person who threatens punishment if I am not employed or seeking employment.

While those are some fairly good reasons to get a job right now, I feel I'm cheating myself quite a bit.
In the event I get the job offered to me, there are some pretty major implications it will impose on some things in my life.
(I'll do my best to skip out on the effects of seemingly minuscule factors, such as social life, personal time, etc. I can always work around  my schedule to do carry those things through efficiently.)

This next semester I'll be taking 4 high school classes and a single college math class.
While that only adds up to 5 classes, it's near to a full schedule, something I'm not familiar with, and it constantly brings back the memories of taking two college classes and a full schedule.
That semester was one of the most fatigued and stressful of my life thus far, I must say, it put me down quite a bit.
So to take on a job that requires twenty hours of focused energy every week, it would put me back in that situation, but during the times where I would usually do homework.
While having 4 more classes would add about 8 more hours, give or take, of class and study time, that'd be difficult in its own rite and less than half of how much I'd be working.
I'd be back to a similar stress of that 9 class, after-school club, volunteering and youth group schedule that put me in such drought of sincerity for every aspect of my life.
It became a hassle to get involved with my social life, as I had to sacrifice productivity in order to see people, and even when the sacrifice was made I was always exhausted or upset or plain unwilling to be around others.
It took a toll on some of my closest friendships, so much so that I now only have less than half a dozen Christian friends.
I attribute my lack of being around as a major factor to some bonds being lost, as well as the loss of faith in several of my closest friends.
I know it's not entirely my fault that they left me or left God, that'd be a very egotistical thing to say, and a person should never be the foundation of another's faith.
But there were all these plans that God was trying to work through in their lives and I shirked them in order to "relax" or "do something for myself for once."

I was burning the candle at both ends and every degree of rotation.

Emotionally distressed, spiritually depraved; states I wish not to retain.

Creatively speaking, it wasn't until after the busy semester that I began posting on here more frequently, I wrote, recorded, and released more music.
Amidst that free period I learned to Chiptune, recorded 4 demos of instrumental songs (which led to my 5 song EP I released in August), worked with the Reckless Pursuit somewhat frequently, and over the entire 2011 year made 256 posts, more than tripling the posts of last year.
While there were obviously more variables which provided creative productivity over that stretch of time, if I continued with that same schedule I simply would not have had the time or motivation to accomplish much of anything.

It was also the time period where I read the Book of Job, much of the New Testament, got over a romantic thorn in my side, and, once July hit, became more active and consistent in my youth group with small group, diligent biblical study, and reading Mere Christianity (while I worked at Silverwood over the summer).

Just listing what happened does not sum up the experiences in themselves, or in-between, or the crappy things that still went on during the time I was free from the business of that 1st semester.
There's some reflection of both sides during those months within the blog, not as in-depth as possible, but it gets the idea across.

After all that reflection, let's come back to what the current situation is now.

The store manager at Albertson's is anticipating two of the four people he hired to drop off (according to "most the times he's hired people"), and if that comes to happen, he will call me within the next week to offer me the job again.

Now on the other hand I have the unnamed post-rock project I'm involved in to consider.
This is the first band of all devoted Christians I've ever been apart of.
This is the first band where I don't carry the bulk of the workload or am an instrument lacky; all four members have an equal contribution to the music both in performance and composition.
This is the first band where we don't sound like wannabes and have the potential to gather a unique and interested fanbase.
This is the first band where we have the equipment to play shows just about anywhere.
This is the first band where we have the ability to record our own demos; the first to have enough material to release EPs and (potentially) full length albums.

In conclusion, this is the only musical project I've been apart of that I have confidence in to become, at least, internally successful and successful within our local community.

Here's the catch I'm sure you've been anticipating: I can't do both the job and the band.

The band practices take up at least half of a day, and that doesn't blend well with occupied weekends and afternoons.

So it comes down to their overall meaning and significance, not just in the worldly sense of success and temporal sustainability, but when it comes to God's plan I can see either opportunity being a part of it.

The job: God allowing me to push past my personal desires, encouraging me to work hard and maintain all sincerity through my work ethic and how it pours into my life. Maintaining undesirable responsibilities, becoming an adult, having a back-up plan, preparing for the future. Rewarding me for my (somewhat) patient and persistent efforts to find a job/being obedient to my parents.

The music: God giving me the opportunity to lay all the cards I have on the table; the paper and pen to write out my magnum opus. To prove that there is truly virtue behind all the aspiration to do good; that there is courage, not cowardice, in the face of danger. To paint the picture of His beauty as it has worked itself in me. Removing the idolatry from the talent and lifting up the source of all passion, pleasure, and glory. Rewarding me for my effort poured out into this medium of praise, this medium of love to communicate to those in need of meaning.

When it comes down to it, either way would be Biblical, I believe.
Where God wants to take it, I am unsure, but praying to be as ready and willing for whatever the situation.
I have, at the least, two days to figure it out; at the most, a week or so.

When comes down to it, I am very biased on which path I wish to take.
But the truth is, if I were God, we'd all be dead.

P.S. I'd also like to make the note that my financial situation seems promising for the Fall  semester at North Idaho College (NIC). Financial aid for 15-20 credits, plasma donation, working for Cha-Cha = $$$ without a real job.
P.P.S. I am also going to be out of state for 4 to 6 consecutive weeks this summer, making me unavailable for a great portion of it. I don't know if I could hold the job after that, or even get it with those plans in mind.


"New Years Day and there's Blood on the Banjo..."

I want to type up a grand eulogy of 2011 and a grander campaign rally for 2012, but I think I should go to sleep before 4:30 AM tonight.
It's too hard at the current moment to sift through my newfound fascination with black holes, C.S. Lewis books I haven't even read, contemplation of existence's impossibility, musical obsession, a vague creative urge, and all the nonsense an exterior perspective steals away from what I say.

No matter the amount of conveyed honesty
blah blah blee bloo blee

I'm delirious.
I started typing semi-poetic feelings there,
But I'm starting to grow weary of my indirect pleas toward growing misunderstandings I see in the world around me.
I could be blatant and paint the screen to show we're all being changed into something to be eaten,
But truthfully, the only purpose such a picture would show where I am currently in the context of the present.

It would display my feelings,
But not inspire an ounce of heart to be changed.
When I speak,
That's all I want in the end.
I could ramble on about what I like and why I like it and why the things I like can be things everyone should enjoy due to their escape from relativity, but then I encounter my interior hypocrisy I find my efforts to be mere vanity.

If I frequently forget that I am subject to sentience beyond my daily bread and pumping blood,
How can I enlighten those who have not savored the same feed or suffered deception to bring their defeat?

Maybe my worry has extended to self-neglect.
To be honest everything is a whirlwhind.
I take life day by day and any chance to take a step back and see the grand scheme of things gives me a harrowing sense of failure and failing.
But alas, I am not unredeemed for anything.

I am starting to believe 
I have an assortment of personalities
The more they interact, 
The randomness and indifference begin their attack.

Please, no sympathy.
It's all confusing, but will eventually find some sort of peace and solidarity.

Just keeping it real, like usual.