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kids as cops: Actors get into their roles in a 2008 Nibley Children's Theatre production of Pirates of Penzance. Click Arts&Life index for a link to this unusual theater group. / Photo courtesy of Bonnie Schenk-Darrington

Today's word on journalism

February 17, 2009

Why I miss my hate mail:

"It's an odd thing to admit, but in a perverse sort of way, I actually miss the wretched river, the rancid flow of puerile, nasty, sickeningly homophobic email I used to receive on a regular basis from the ultra-right and the Christian right and the Mormon right and the Bush-impaired whenever I would post a friendly, pointed column full of tangy liberal attitude. . . . . Oh, I miss all the lovely and positive email too, which outpaced the nasty stuff by a huge margin. But the hate mail was very special indeed, great fodder for live readings, for the reaction of horrified disbelief of anyone who saw it, for the charming reminder of just how ugly and violent and grammatically challenged the human animal can be."

--Mark Morford, columnist, SFGate.com (2/13/09)

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Review: 'Life In-Between' a bit of bliss from appropriately named band

By Shannon Gibbs

January 15, 2009 | For 10 ears Utah has enjoyed the pure rock euphoria known as Royal Bliss. Now with the band's major album debut Life In-Between, (Jan. 13 from Capitol Records) the musicians are sharing their sound with the world.

Life In-Between is loaded with intense feeling, incredible music and pure rock. Royal Bliss has managed to capture the good and bad in life in such a way that every person who hears them feels like that song was meant for them. Their name comes from a combination of the word royal meaning "of or pertaining to a king" and the word bliss meaning "supreme happiness" so together the name means "King of the best feeling you can feel." Which is a very apt description for this Utah based band. Their music has such intensity and when lyrics are added to the mix the range of passion is indescribable and does make one feel every emotion that these songs evoke to its brink.

In Life In-Between the emotion is compelling and raw in every song, a perfect combination of humility, skill and desire, compelling listeners to search the meaning out of every track. The entire album is filled to the brink with good times to be had. From the first song Save Me, to the last, I Was Drunk, both of which have been released as singles, Life In-Between proves to be a classic in the making. Other songs that are among my favorites are, Devils & Angels, and Here They Come, both of which are sure to reach the souls of those who hear them. Devils & Angels describes the good and bad choices we all face in life, inner demons so to speak. In Here They Come we are confronted head on with the realization that people try to put there points of view on you, pushing you to be, act and think their way, and trample the desire for individualism.

One cannot listen to just one song from this album without being compelled to want more, hear more and demand more. Royal Bliss’ sound is very unique and has a momentum all its own. They have obtained a very loyal fan base through out the west coast (especially in Utah) that will surely spread like wildfire to the rest the U.S. as well as beyond as more people are exposed to the blissful rock sound that Royal Bliss has captured in such a captivating way.

From their conception as a band, Royal Bliss has faced horrific times, yet still managed to hold their devotion to one another and to their music. Throughout the last ten years they have experienced tragedy within the band, tragedy that would have torn most groups apart and left them defeated but they wouldn’t allow that. Through sheer will and their devotion to music and their band, they pulled themselves through the rough times and have used every ounce of pain, every moment of joy to produce Life In-Between, one of the best albums I have heard in years.

Life In-Between track list:
1-Save Me
2-Here They Come
3-Devils & Angels
4-Pocket Of Dreams
5-Finally Figured It Out
6-We Did Nothing Wrong
7-By & By
8-Wash It All Away
9-Whiskey
10-Fancy Things
11-I Don’t Mind
12-I Was Drunk

Links
www.royalbliss.com
www.myspace.com/royalbliss
www.facebook.com/pages/Royal-Bliss/46060810010

 

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