Rapper André 3000 Cast as Jimi Hendrix in Upcoming Biopic

Posted: June 8, 2012 by Karthik Iyengar in Music
Tags: ,

We take a look at André 3000, the rap artist who’s supposed to be Jimi Hendrix in the upcoming Hendrix biopic ‘All Is By My Side’

American rapper André Benjamin, alias André 3000 (not another shady beer brand) has been cast as Jimi Hendrix in the long awaited biographical movie, ‘All Is By My Side’ which commemorates the musical legend. André, famous for his work in the hip-hop duo ‘OutKast’ is visibly pleased to emulate Hendrix. For those who don’t care, or cannot recollect, you might have seen him featured in the Gorillaz track ‘DoYaThing’. Yes, we see how your wicked mind is already trying to relate the poor guy to actual Gorillas, and we just want to state that it’s ethically wrong and you’re going to die in hell.

Although the decision to portray André has caused music fanatics to swear and snigger like Muttley, due credit must be given to the artist for his fervent campaigning for the film to be given the go ahead. André has acted in a few films before, and is excited to face this impending challenge. In addition to the four chords he’s already played on his hit number ‘Hey Ya!’, the rapper/actor is showing great signs of promise by trying to learn the F Major chord, augmenting his guitar prowess significantly.

The movie will portray Hendrix’s unadulterated awesomeness when he was working on his highly lauded debut album ‘Are You Experienced?’. But to the disappointment of all Hendrix fans, it looks as though the movie won’t be featuring any of the guitar legend’s psychedelic tracks, with Hendrix’s estate publicly denying the filmmakers’ requests to feature the guitarist’s songs in the movie. Practically speaking, it’s not the wisest call to make a biopic where you won’t be using the protagonist’s music, but lets give it time and see how it pans out.

Written for The Score Magazine: http://www.highonscore.com/rapper-andr-3000-casted-in-upcoming-jimi-hendrix-biopic


If you’re in Mumbai and have an ear for good music, Blakc is probably one of those names you’ve heard a lot. They started their act in 2007 and have come a long way since, releasing their second album “Motheredland” which is no mean feat, given the relatively short time span. The album itself seems to be really polished, with big shots like Shantanu Hudilkar of Yash Raj, Keshav Dhar of the Skyharbour fame and Mastering Engineer Chris Athens who has worked with AC/DC and Coldplay, involved in its production.

Shady as the area surrounding Blue Frog may be, the ambiance inside more than compensates for your questionable judgment. Although it looks like the insides of a Star Trek spacecraft, The Frog exhibits reasonable sound and lighting. Sufficient care has been taken with respect to the acoustics and pristine sound hits you as soon as the first note is struck.

I’ve been to a few Blakc gigs before, and I’ve had the opportunity to see their sound evolve over time. An unexpected piano on the stage made me curious as to out how well would it fit into the Blakc sound. Their set began with a strong opening track in ‘Bitten‘, well worth the initial anticipation which smoothly flowed into ‘The Dreamcast’. You could notice the audience singing along with the vocalist, Shawn Pereira, which speaks a lot about the band’s fanbase. After all, the best thing a band would want to see is people humming their tunes.

Shawn’s ability to modulate his voice and hit the high notes has only gotten better with time. The stage was owned by him and bassist Roop Thomas, who managed to keep the audience engaged. The sound, driven by his slap and pop, funk-reminiscent basslines, the intertwining guitar riffs by Anish Menon and Reinhardt Dias, and the heavy hitting by drummer Shishir Thakur seemed very complete. Blakc brought some  beautiful women to perform the backing vocals and play the piano on some tracks. In addition to making Mumbai uncannily seem like Delhi for a second, due to the hoots and wolf-whistles, they did a fairly reasonable job.

Armed with his trademark Tweety brandishing bass, Roop’s has an impressive array of bass playing techniques up his sleeve. Reinhardt’s sweet sounding guitar tone and Anish’s smooth playing complemented each other very well, with both the guitarists taking turns to solo, almost as if they were competing with each other. The new album seemed to have a progressive angle to it, with a multitude of guitar effects all around. The grunge-like performance from the band, the high energy and cohesive sound of the differently influenced band members made up for a unique listening experience.

The sound eventually began to sound a bit too heavy to be labeled alternative, with the band seemingly abandoning the old-school verse-chorus scheme. Almost each track was adorned with both mellow and vigorous parts, as if they’re giving you time to recover before you get back on your toes. After flaunting their new material, they moved on to the staples from their 2009 album, “Choking on a Dream”, giving some of the old-timers a treat. The set included the headbang inducing ‘Rift‘ and the beautiful sounding toms on ‘Field of Thought‘, ‘Alone’ accompanied by hollow promises about how they’d be playing it for the last time. A different sounding ‘Sold‘ metamorphosed into ‘Smells Like Teen Spirit‘, a last hurrah to reward the folks who hung around till the end.

Apart from making balding men burn up in envy with their badass hair, Blakc are really upping the ante when it comes to live performances. People who complain that there are not enough reasonable gigs going around in Mumbai should really start looking harder. A Sunday night, well spent, the only pleasurable agony being my ears ringing with their sound.

Photo Credits: Parizad D

Written for The Score Magazine: http://www.highonscore.com/blakc-album-launch-the-blue-frog-mumbai-june-03-2012

Compiz is an alternate window manager for Linux which not only provides the much needed eye-candy for Xubuntu, but also provides a ton of functionality and possibilities as well. With Xubuntu 12.10, the Compiz interface is smoother and more stable than it was ever before and shows a lot of promise. Those who are willing to tax their system a bit, in exchange for a beautiful desktop experience should consider using Compiz.

Here’s a quick and dirty, beginner tutorial on how to install and get Compiz up and running on your Xubuntu 12.10 Quantal Quetzal installation.

Fire up a terminal window and paste the following command, a trouble-free way to get Compiz on your system.

sudo apt-get update && sudo apt-get install compiz compiz-core compiz-gnome compiz-plugins compiz-plugins-default compiz-plugins-extra compiz-plugins-main compiz-plugins-main-default compizconfig-backend-gconf compizconfig-settings-manager libcompizconfig0 libdecoration0 python-compizconfig fusion-icon


Now that we have all the good stuff, we can finally work on setting Compiz up. Open up the CompizConfig Settings Manager from the Menu –> Settings.

To save you guys a ton of trouble with manually configuring it up, I’m providing my profile which exhibits a nice mix of looks and functionality. To import the attached pre-configured profile, choose Import in the Preferences tab of the CompizConfig Settings manager and select the downloaded profile.

For the record, I mapped Control + Alt + X to the xkill command and Control + Alt + T to the terminal in my profile for quick access. Do feel free to play around with the settings and tweak Compiz as per your requirements.

Once we’ve finished setting it up by importing the settings, it’s time to fire the sucker up. Open up the Compiz Fusion Icon from Menu –> System. If everything turns out right, you’ll find yourself enjoying the awesomeness of Compiz.

Now, the only thing that remains is to set Compiz as the default Window Manager everytime your system boots up. Doing this is pretty simple too.  Navigate to Menu –> Setting –> Settings Manager –> Sessions and Startup. In the Application Autostart tab, add a new entry and set the command to




And we’re done. That’s really all there is to it. If you find the Compiz-Fusion icon on the taskbar annoying, you can replace the startup command with

compiz --replace



Pre-configured Compiz Profile link:

Link 1: http://www.4shared.com/file/pgrH1wcm/Compiz_Xubuntu_1204.html?

Link 2: http://www43.zippyshare.com/v/25630619/file.html

Do let us know if this article helps and if you have any queries.

Europa League Final: Review

Posted: May 17, 2012 by Pranoy Biswas in Football
Tags: , ,

A masterclass from Falcao along with a sublime goal from Diego towards the end were enough to crush Bilbao’s dreams of winning their maiden European trophy.

Rarely has there been such a heavy bias for a team among the neutrals in a Europa league final, last time this happened, Atletico were also the winners, winning 2-1 (AET) against Fulham, which incidentally was also the last time someone cared of watching the Europa League.

Atletico started in the 4-2-3-1, initially pressing Bilbao’s back four when they had the ball, especially the centre-backs Javi Martinez and Amorebieta, who passed among themselves so much as if they were vying to be on the Barcelona team. As the game moved on, Atletico retreated, although pressing when the ball came in to the Bilbao midfield to deny them time and space. The animated Atletico manager, Diego Simeone was constantly reminding his team to keep up this pressure.

Bilbao started in their favoured 4-3-3 with Itturaspe deep in midfield, Munain on the left of the attacking three, and Fernando Llorente leading the line. Munain kept coming deep in search of the ball and served as a usefull outball for the under-pressure Bilbao defenders. With the midfield unable to function due to the constant pressure, Llorente was isolated and rarely featured in the game.

The real star of the final ofcourse was Falcao, who has been once again in a superb run of form coming into the Europa league final. He was highly tipped to score in this match, having scored in the recent two meetings between the two sides. Falcao was the star of last year’s Europa final too with his well timed header helping Andre Villas-Boas’s Porto win 1-0 against Benfica.

His movement was terrific, making well timed runs into the channels, which resulted into his marvellous first goal. It was a treat to watch Falcao, exhibiting calmness and composure in the final third and gave Amorebieta a hard time. Amorebieta was also at fault He was also at fault for the second goal when he was caught dabbling on the ball.

At 2-0 up, they could now sit deeper and keep things organised, with Gabi and Mario Suarez doing well to disrupt Bilbao attacks and keeping them out of the final third. Marcelo Bielsa bought on fan-favourite Toquero for Ander Herrera to add an extra striker but Bilbao rarely created much in the final third with Godin keeping Llorente quiet.

Toquero is like Bilbao’s version of Eboue

It was a sad night for Bielsa fans like me, Bilbao have played some entertaining football this season, but they lacked the mentality and experience for a final. Their passes were erratic and were exposed on the counter by a brilliant Atletico Madrid team. Hopefully they would learn from this game and put in a better performance against Barcelona in the Copa Del Rey final. Diego Simeone should be commended for a perfect gameplan executed ruthlessly and brillaintly with commendable performances from Suarez, Diego and ofcourse Falcao.

Why College Gigs Are Totally Not Worth Goat Shit

Posted: April 2, 2012 by Karthik Iyengar in Music
Tags: ,

With Rock & Roll thriving in the country, there has been a sprout in the number of raucous concerts at educational institutions. Karthik Iyengar gives a piece of his mind about them.

Every college gig I have had the displeasure of going to has ended with me leaving with an inexplicable urge to jump off a tall building. It all starts with me going to the gig with bloated expectations only to see them come crashing down like the climax of a generic CID episode. The whole fiasco ends with me repenting the frivolous waste of time and energy. This pathetic excuse for entertainment serves only two purposes:

  • To cover up for the other shitty events happening at the college, which are as boring as rat funerals.
  • To retard human evolution and create a dystopian universe where people are forced to live in caves and listen to Kumar Sanu songs.

Mostly, it’s the former, but you see where I’m getting at. These gigs often boast a deadly combination of horrendous sound, amateur bands and a ghoul-resembling host. Remotest of signs of genuine talent from the bands is crushed instantly by the hugely unappreciative and sometimes amusingly stationary audiences. Participating bands can be conveniently classified into one of the following categories:

Dude the sound sucked dude: The band which screws up a major part of the allotted time in the sound-check, and then innocently blames the elusive ‘Sound Guy’ for their troubles. Everyone has the same arrangement, fucking deal with it already.

I kill you: The brutal, growling trash/death/metal-core band with blood stained tee shirts. They earn a ton of laughs by the item-number loving audience who cannot comprehend the genre. Such bands can also be used as an effective weapon to disperse crowds creating the illusion of rabid dogs and pigs, thanks to the vocal growls.

What men want: The band with the hot lead singer chick, who usually can’t sing for shit. Gets lots of wolf-whistles and desi hoots. If the said singer performs western numbers, choicest words such as ‘Firangi Item’ are put in the mix. And if by some accident, if these guys win the contest, the judges can be immediately branded ‘Tharkis’.

Summer of ’69: The band which whores itself to the crowd by playing popular numbers. Exhibits absolute lack of rhythm and timing. No signs musical competence whatsoever, with the band heavily influenced by err..Ultimate-Guitar.com. And it’s no miracle that these guys are lovingly embraced by the audience.

Finger-Biting good: The serious looking band who look like they play in a mortuary in their spare time. Morbid expressions may be caused by extreme nervousness or years of listening to Progressive Rock music.

Macho men: The hard core band which heavily cusses and performs questionable antics on stage in an effort to look cool. Finally gets disqualified for doing the same. Can be seen pleading to the organizers with puppy-faces, abandoning all their awesome machismo.

Now, If you ever decide to visit one, blending into the crowd at the venue requires strict adherence of:

The 10 commandments of a college-gig goer

  • Thou shalt always diss the college thou art at.
  • Thou shalt always strive to find shady corners at the venue where thou shalt get high.
  • Thou shalt always covet long hair.
  • Thou shalt brag to your friends about the gig ASAP to improve thy coolness quotient.
  • Thou shalt treat anyone not wearing a black tee with contempt.
  • Thou shalt totally focus on the ‘Bhassist’ during an impressive guitar solo.
  • Thou shalt head bang and mosh even if it’s Beethoven playing.
  • Thou shalt post photos of thou at the gig on Facebook whist making the \m/ gesture.
  • Thou shalt always try to compare rookie bands to Jimi Hendrix and Metallica.
  • Thou shalt look for seating arrangements at a metal gig.
Note 1: Stop counting the points to verify whether there were actually ten.
Note 2: For all those people who are going like “Hey dude, not all such gigs suck”,  shut up and suck it up.

Yeah! We’re so fucking better than you!