Friday, 24 May 2013

Metal Outlaw TV update and how to support the show

An update on this blog is well overdue so i figured I'd better write something worthwhile. At the moment Metal Outlaw TV is on hiatus in terms of full episodes. Episode 6 should surface sometime in July. Apologies for the delay but we all have our other work commitments to take care of too. At least we haven't given up on the show but we are looking to divide it in to more manageable chunks. So instead of a monster 10-15 minute episode we'll be dividing it up in to 3-5 minute chunks and release them over a few weeks. Hopefully this will lead to more views and greater audience retention. It will also help us determine what works and what doesn't in the show. Feel free to comment your feelings on the changes. We do listen to our fanbase... sometimes, lol.

Although full episodes are on hold until the middle of the summer we are still producing new content. We have just released a new Metal Spoken Word featuring "Heartwork" by Carcass and we'll be following with another one in the next couple of weeks. Then it is on to out Les-Fest coverage. We will be trying to land as many interviews as we can. At the moment the list of potentially interested bands is somewhere between 10-15. Ideally we're looking to whittle that down to a dozen. In the days following Les-Fest we'll be putting out roughly an interview a day and we'll probably be topping it off with a longer recap video featuring live shots and random nonsense. We're looking for bands to loan us some of their live tracks for the recap video. If anyone is interested then please get in touch. We'd certainly be grateful.

Now on to the monetisation of Metal Outlaw TV. I'm sure you'll all appreciate that MOTV is not a money making operation as of yet. In fact it is costing us money, studio time, and most importantly our own time. It is worth it though as myself, Roddy and Big C enjoy it and want to support the UK metal scene as we are all life long metal listeners. We don't feel that our support should be one way though so here is a list of ways that you as fans can support us, help build our audience, and contribute to our product:

1. Watch and share all of our videos. I know this is kind of obvious but we want as many eyes on our videos as we can get. Word of mouth is by far the best way to get us out there. We can only do so much on our own so anything you can do to spread the word would help greatly.

2. Paypal donation or downloadable track donation. Donations can really help us buy things like batteries, bulbs and other general consumables. Personally I'd rather you share and download the tracks while giving us a donation of your choice. That way you get something for your money. Of course if you can't afford to donate you can still download the track and enjoy on us. I don't want to discourage paypal donations though. If you have a spare £1000 kicking about we could definitely use it.

3. Click on our google ads on the website. I've been keeping my eye on the CPM for banner ads and roughly we make around 30-50p per click on the adverts embedded on the page. Not too shabby really so if you have a spare minute or two we'd love you to visit the website and give an advert a click. Just don't go clicking a million times. It doesn't work like that (sadly). Obviously we get some adsense revenue for video views too but it is peanuts really (around $1 per 1000 views). We'd much rather you visit and click an ad.

4. Buy a t-shirt from Redbubble. We get a small cut of any merchandise we sell through Redbubble. However, we are more interested in getting our logo out there by you guys wearing our gear.

So there you go. That's how to support Metal Outlaw TV. Now go do it NOW!!!!


Monday, 19 November 2012

Metal Outlaw TV and my philosophy on UK TV

With the imminent appearance of Metal Outlaw TV's debut episode I thought it was a good opportunity for a wee bit of a rant. Hopefully the show is going down well and people are interested enough to start following it. Now although I am promoting the show here I actually want to get a little "analytical" and discuss where my head has been at and what I have learned through it all.

This past year has been a real trial for me. It started with a major drought in paying work and had me questioning my future doing what I'm doing. A scary prospect given that I'm OLD (as I've been cheekily described as lately). When things picked up around summer time I was still lacking passion for what I was doing and I was wondering why. To be perfectly blunt I haven't been happy for around 90% of this calender year. It wasn't until the last couple of weeks that I finally put together why I've been feeling the way I have. It all came down to being put on the spot by a friend who asked the weighted question, "Colin, what do you want?" I'm sure anyone reading this wouldn't  feel the slightest bit rattled by this question but in the frame of mind I've been in it really made me sit back and re-evaluate. Well taking personal life out of the equation because I've known what the solution to that is and really depends of finding my opposite number. On the other aspects of life front  I've concluded I want to see my views, perspective, tastes in music, sense of humour, and "self" represented on screen and in society. "Why?" you ask. Well because in a so called diverse society priding itself being tolerant of cultural diversity everyone deserves to have their tastes catered for. Yet funnily enough I don't think British television does a good enough job at that.

I fit in to a minority of people who you would consider different from the norm. I look at the current crop of "prime time" entertainment (some of which I've worked on) and I just can not fathom it's appeal. Lets take some examples of "quality" British programming. "I'm a Celebrity Get Me Out of Here!" I read this point on Facebook the other night and it hit the nail on the head. The premise of the show is the in essence Big Brother fused together with a 20 year old show concept from Japan, "Endurance", a show that 20 years ago was pointed at and ridiculed by Chris Tarrant (Tarrant on TV) for being juvenile and a bit cruel. It WAS juvenile and a bit cruel but it was okay to point at and laugh because we didn't make it. It was those wacky Japanese and they're nuts. We in Britain would never stoop such low brow depths. Fast forward 20 years and apparently it's okay to show cruel, mean spirited challenges as long as a group of Z-list celebrities are involved. By the way, when I say cruel I mean to the animals harmed/devoured during the show's challenges not the celebrities. I value a cockroaches life more than some poor desperate sod clinging on to what little fame they had in the 80's. On that note moving on...

How about, Geordie Shore, The Only Way is Essex, Real Gypsy Weddings? Shows like this are even trashier in my opinion. Not only have these shows convinced a whole generation that a skin tone that does not exist naturally on this planet (and hopefully none other) is "sexy". Seriously I wonder if these people glow in the dark, they've smeared so much crap over their prematurely aging bodies. Perhaps I don't get the aesthetic appeal of this but it is only part of my point. My real issue with this kind of show is that it is yet again cruel. It allows the audience to shake their heads at these people who are presented as the lowest common denominator and made to be figures of ridicule through selective editing. Now they are being paid for the "privilage" of having 15 minutes of fame so it is hard for me to feel sorry for them but why does the majority viewing audience get a kick out of people being presented as figures to be thoroughly humiliated? To me this type of show and the "I'm a Celeb" are like the modern day equivalent of putting people in stocks and taking pleasure in tossing rotten fruit at them. In fact it has a lot in common with the torture porn genre of film as it focuses unpleasant people having unpleasant things happen to them for the enjoyment of the viewing audience.

I could go on about this theme of cruelty... X-Factor/The Voice, Take Me Out, The Scheme... to name but a few. However, I'm going to leave it at that as I think you get the point that as a viewer I do not feel these shows represent what I want to see on television. Should they be banned? Absolutely not but I want to know is, "Where's my alternative?" Now I'm well aware that there are a ton of quality American shows on our screens and thank fuck for "The Big Bang Theory", "Sons of Anarchy", "Battlestar Galactica" and the numerous shows that I haven't had the time to watch but hopefully will (Dexter, The Wire, Breaking Bad). What we are talking about is domestic television and as someone who has his toes dipped in that industry, how I feel about the quality of programming we're producing is complete and utter apathy. I will go as far to say I have never worked on a television show that I'd actually watch. Now I want to stress I am not talking ill of the experiences I've had just the end result. I mean one of my favourite jobs was working on the auditions for The Voice. A top notch crew and lovely lovely people to boot.  So before I go on a tangent I once again ask, "Where is my television show, UK? Why aren't my tastes being met in the age of multi-channel television? Which surely encourage diversity and variety above everything else. 

Simply put I believe it's because I'm not normal enough. I'm a freak. I'm an intense, morally high strung, straight edge loner, who listens to heavy metal, plays video games, and loves a good conspiracy theory. I don't want to see cruel mean spirited programming. I want to see a video game review show. I want to see counter culture programming giving a critical opposing view to popular culture. I want to see rock music back on our screens. Scuzz and Kerrang absolutely do not count. Where can I find that? Not on TV that's for sure. Thank fuck for the internet. As a rule I spend more time on Cinemassacre, ThatGuyWithTheGlasses, Blistered Thumbs than I do watching TV. The simple reason for this is as an outsider it gives me what I need in entertainment. Why isn't stuff like this on television in the UK? Do we really need to see "Two Pints of Lager and a Packet of Crisps" repeated on BBC3 for the 60 millionth time? Why not commit half an hour a week to let Ashen's review tat on his sofa? So being that I'm a metal fan and I really don't think anyone has nailed a web show centered around that theme yet. I decided to give it a bash. This is the idea behind Metal Outlaw TV. It is very much in it's genesis at the moment. To most people who aren't the target demographic it might seem to be low brow shit... and you'd have a point. It is low brow (especially Metal Spoken Word) and it may even be a bit shit if you're just casually looking on. However, it's my kind of shit and I've got to think that there are more of me out there who feel the same way. Remember what I said about having myself represented? Well this is it. Now you could argue that I am a hypocrite for putting the moral guilt trip on the majority viewing audience when I have made a video or two featuring poetry readings containing offensive and explicit lyrics. That is fair comment but in my defense it is only language. Words hold no real power. In fact they only really hold any value when used with intent. "I'm going to kill you!" with a smile on your face is vastly different from the same words wielding a knife. Get my point? Probably not.  That is why I see the PC brigade as a bunch of prissy grammar nazi's. Is a man reading lyrics about cumming blood anywhere near as offensive as degrading exploitation of human beings for the sake of entertainment (*cough* *cough* I'm a Celeb)? From my moral stance I'd say "No!" and I think I've justified my point adequately. The rest of you may feel differently and if you can argue your point better than mine I'll concede that you might be right. All I know is Metal Outlaw TV has made me enjoy what I'm doing again and I hope to make it in to a successful brand so that I no longer have to work on British television shows that I can never enjoy. Hopefully this rant makes sense to someone out there even if it is only a freak like me. Till next time, Cheers.

Monday, 12 November 2012

Attica Rage: Road Dog Forever release

I'm aware it has been a long time since my last post but I've been very busy with the odd bit of industry work, getting Metal Outlaw TV up and running and finally completing the Attica Rage film. Yes! You read correctly. After 3 years of set backs and stress I'm happy to report that the film is now in the final stages of production and within a couple of weeks it will be pressed on to many shiny new DVD's. Now all I need is all of you (all 5 of you) to go out and buy it. ;)

So where to buy. It can be bought directly from the band at gigs or if you are local to me or any of the band members, directly from one of us. The best place to pre-order/buy for the rest of you is from the band's official website . Easy as that. I want to stress what you are getting is of far better quality and better value for money than what other bands at Attica's level have put out. I'm not pointing any fingers *cough* *cough* Fury UK. So I believe it warrants the £15.00 asking price. Bare in mind this is a short run, fully independent (no label involvement, no grant funding) feature plus a whole host of extras. For me it's a personal achievement and I'm extremely proud of the end result. So if I see any part of it online a week after its release I will be out for blood. No joke! Pirate Metallica's DVD's, not mine. Attica Rage: Road Dog Forever available to buy December 1st, 2012. Check out the trailer:

Now that I have the sales pitch out of the way I think it would be a good time to talk about the project a little. It basically started life while I was at university and one of the things on my bucket list was to make a band documentary. Unfortunately a lot of bands on the scene at the time were completely dicking around and never took it seriously. The last thing I wanted was to spend a year making a film only to have the band disband and be forgotten by the time I had finished. I came across Attica Rage who had been around a wee while so I figured they would be a safe bet. I also liked the style of music and the contrast between the band members. I'm a classic metal fan through and through since I actually like comprehensible lyrics and an actual tune so it seemed to fit. I pitched the singer, Jonny,  at a gig in the Cathouse and gave him a very studenty sample of my work. Months went by and I assumed that the band had decided that they weren't interested. Rejection is something you have to get used to if you do what I do. As it turns out though I was wrong. Jonny got in contact and we set up a little meeting in the Solid. I told the band exactly what I wanted to do and what I wanted to get out it. My only condition was that they were serious about it and that we all see it through till the end. Although there were times when I felt like giving up I'm proud to say I kept my word.

From there I shadowed the band at more or less every event they played over the next two years. The only exceptions were a gig in Edinburgh and High Voltage festival. I regret not doing one of these guess which one. Beyond gigs and festivals I also delved a little in to their lives outside the band and covered the making of the Road Dog album. Unfortunately the personal stuff did not come off as I had hoped. I think a couple of the members were a bit uncomfortable sharing their stories which was really disappointing to me from a film makers point of view. To me that's why Anvil works better than any "rockumentary" ever made. The guys wore there hearts on their sleeves and were very interesting characters. I think the Attica guys are interesting enough to hold an audiences attention but it was difficult to get a personal, mass appeal,  narrative out of them. This may be my failing as a film maker. Perhaps I wasn't invasive enough but it's one of those risk/reward scenarios. If you push too hard and overstep your bounds there is nothing stopping the guys from pulling the plug completely. At the end of the day I knew that the film would only be something that would appeal to fans of the genre and band anyway so it was easy to live with that disappointment. At the end of the day you work with what you've got and I am really happy with the end result, especially the Classic Grand gig which looks and sounds brilliant. I'm also glad that I managed to catch a bit of the humour going on as well as some of the drama of being in an unsigned band.

As an experience it was fun for the vast majority of it. I got to go to several festivals, get plenty of practice filming and editing, met many folks who have since become friends. Although I'm not going to lie, I met one or two folks who really get my back up too and I also had to endure a trip to Ibiza and the worst people in the world (British clubbers). On the whole the experience was positive. I learned a lot. I got better at what I do. I made a few important contacts and at the end of the day at the very least I can say that I had the guts to go out there and create something I wanted to make. I struggle to think of anyone working in film and TV who can claim that. Which is maybe why British TV is the pit of reality TV pish that it's become. I know from experience. I've worked on some of it.

Next for me is getting Metal Outlaw TV off of the ground. Heavy metal/rock needs a platform for up and coming bands to be seen. I'm hoping that myself Roddy and Big C can develop this concept in to that platform. I'm guessing time will tell. I'm also looking to get involved with working on anything that comes my way in any role (as long as it isn't a tea/coffee go fetcher or chauffeur). I want to build up as much experience and as many contacts as I can for the future. So if anyone is interested in working together on absolutely anything I'm more than willing to talk. So until next time, BUY THE DVD!!!!!

Tuesday, 10 July 2012

Metal Spoken Word, Les-Fest, and a wee rant.

So while I've been busy doing some events videography and photography (snore)  I've managed to chuck together a couple of new videos together for Metal Outlaw TV. The first one was a concept I've had in my head for a wee while and all came about from watching a classic Christopher Walken video on you tube. The video I'm of course referring to is the one where he reads "the three little pigs". If you haven't seen it yet it is fucking hilarious. Anyway this led me to conclude that certain people have the ability to read the phone book and make it funny. So I racked my brain and decided that the perfect person to try this little experiment  was right under my nose for the past 3 years. I'm of course referring to former Attica Rage bassist, Big C. Having filmed the man for ages I knew how funny the guy is and unlike a ton of actual "funny" men his humour doesn't seem forced. Gary Tank Commander and Limmy take note. So with the idea and star in place all that was left to figure out was what to have him read. I finally settled on "I Cum Blood" by Cannibal Corpse. I'm by no means a fan of that style of music or the content but the lyrics are intended to offend and if you want peoples attention being offensive is a pretty good way to go about it. So after about an hour setting up and half an hour (3 takes) filming we had probably one of the most popular videos I've shot. I'd probably adjust the lighting slightly in hind sight but technically I'm really happy with it. And judging by the overwhelming number of likes per view I'd have to say that my first ever Metal Spoken Word was a complete success. A lot of the credit does belong with Big C as he delivered exactly what I expected. If you've not had the chance to view it yet. here is the first ever Metal Spoken Word with Big C.

The weekend before last saw me attending the first ever Les-Fest rock and metal festival in a sort of semi-official capacity. I figured since I was going anyway it would be a good opportunity to grab a little coverage for Metal Outlaw TV and hopefully spread the word for the channel. So I managed to snag a few wee interviews with 15 Times Dead, Fantasist, Dirty Rose, and the event organiser Dave Ritchie. I would have liked a couple more interviews but I was too busy the week before to actually organise most of them ahead of time. Anyway, I was happy with the resulting video and I think my interviewing, which is usually hit or miss, was pretty good most of the time. And even if you're not a fan of a lot of the bands on the line up the video is worth a view for the delight that is absinthe man. What a fanny!

So my impressions on the event itself. Overall i was fairly impressed with the set up. The Valley International Park is a great location and I was pleasantly surprised at how many people were camping. What you get for your money is really good value and the venue itself sounded pretty good. I liked the atmosphere of the whole thing and you can tell it was organised by a fan of music instead of your typical promoter type. If I'm sounding like I have an axe to grind it's because I do. In general I'm not a fan of people exploiting the talents of others and ripping them off in the process. I've witnessed quite a wee bit of it in my time. I'll leave it at that for now and here's the video. Hope you enjoy.

So what does the future of Metal Outlaw TV hold? Well I'm finally deciding to get serious about it and the goal is to try and build a monthly show around it. I will be standing down in front of the camera and will be replaced with someone else. I know who I want for the job but we've still to sit down and talk over the specifics. We will also be doing interview and recorded sessions (courtesy of Roddy Macaudio) in order to help promote bands who wish to take part. On that note anyone wishing to be featured can they please get in touch at and we'll see about featuring you on the show. The whole reason I started the channel in the first place was to give bands some exposure beyond mobile phone/ camcorder videos with shitty sound. Myself and Roddy have discussed this at length and we are becoming increasingly annoyed by this attitude that everything can be done at home. In some cases bands can do it for example Bleed From Within, who have been putting out some really good promo content recently. However, the majority of you really should invest time and money in your recordings and promo materials. Metal Outlaw TV is a free service that will allow you to do get that so please get in touch to have your band showcased properly. It's your loss if you don't. Until next time. Later. 

Thursday, 31 May 2012

Artsy Fartsy Nonsense

This week I had one of those one in a life time mind blowing experiences that will live with me forever. The kind that I'm not content just storing in memory and giggle about from time to time. This was one of those once in a life time experiences which you just have to rant about on a blog that no one other than your most sarcastic of friends would read. Any how lets cut to the chase. This Tuesday night I caught up with a uni mate for a bit of a catch up. Now the plan for the evening was to go and see one of our former uni lecturers do some stand up and heckle...erm...I mean show our support. So anyway we had time to kill before the actual show so we had a couple of games of fooseball which resulted in me being defeated and humiliated much like Scotland in their friendly against the yanks. After that we decided to grab a couple of Krush'ems from KFC. After taking around 40 minutes to finish mine I came to the conclusion that I would make a terrible gay guy. Just as well I wwasn't planning on going down that road anyway.

So after finally finishing my Krush'em and taking a couple of minutes to regain my breath we headed back to the gig to discover that our former uni lecturer had just got off the stage. Doh! We had a brief chat with him and he said we should stay and check out the remaining acts. I said, "Okay!" So me and my mate paid our £3 to enter, and looked like complete fools trying to get our glowstick wrist bands on (mine was pink by the way). We took a seat in the corner and eagerly anticipated the next act.

So trying to keep an open mind we watched the first performance which to my surprise was actually pretty good. It was a 3 actor performance piece that satirized the self righteous atheist movement. Since I am a self righteous atheist I got a real kick out of it. The message was seemed about as subtle as a punch to the face. I prefer my satire subtle. Anyway, after being pleasantly surprised the hostess gets up on stage and introduced the next act who was a DJ. Now the letters D and J stuck together strikes absolute terror in me and has done so ever since I stood in the Garage a few years back, bored out my mind listening to some twat dicking around on a MacBook for an hour while I was waiting for Steel Panther to come on. Now if I can go off on a tangent for a second. Just because you spent £800 pound on a MacBook with the same spec as a £400 PC does not make you a musical legend. It makes you a superficial wank pot. I can not fucking stand this super pompous aura that a lot of Mac owners have.  It is not a gimmick for impressing your mates and giving them metaphorical penis envy. It is merely a tool used to do work. Simple as that. Reigning it back to the topic at hand. So after his introduction a guy in a Pingu outfit gets on the stage and sets up a reel to reel tape player, a mixer and a bunch of other audio equipment. I thought to myself, "this looks interesting" as he starts "performing". Now how to describe what I heard. I'm known for my honesty so let me just say it was the most horrifically bad thing I've ever heard in my life. It sounded like white noise being fed back without any discernible tune. I felt like my brain was going to explode like the dude in Scanners. The noise droned on and on, and then then pingu pulls out what looks like a Kazoo and starts groaning through it in to the mic. From there he went out to the crowd, still growning, while I suddenly found religion and was praying that he wouldn't come near me. Thankfully it was heard and he walked on by. So after what seemed like an eternity, he finished and I took a sigh of relief. My mate turned to me and asked, "Have you ever felt so out of place?" I pondered that for a second, going through my personal hall of shame. I have been to the odd night club, surrounded by drunk idiots. I have been to a Juliet Lewis gig and listen to her talk pish in between mediocre tunes. I have even been to Ibiza or as I like to call it, "The land where culture goes to die". So weighing everything up I'd have to say that this probably wins the title of the most out of place I have ever been in my life. I think the thing I found most shocking was that the dude got a round of applause at the end. I know it was an artistic showcase and all that but get real what was that pish all about? It was like the musical equivalent of that chick who presented her unmade bed as an art exhibit. I would google her name... if I cared. It had absolutely nothing to convey as far as I could tell.

Now maybe the performance was a piss take or I could be a complete philistine and be missing the point entirely but that would require it either being funny or communicating something audible. It did neither. So how can I best describe what I had just experienced? I like the term "inaudible wank". Now I'm sure if I were to play the audience on that night a bit of Slayer they would have the same reaction as I had to this. And they would be justified in doing so if it ain't their thing. However,even on Slayers worst day they are more artists than any so called DJ. As a metal fan I often get people looking down their noses at what I listen to, dismissing it as just noise. Trust me there is more to that "noise" than there is all this techno, dance, trance pish. I think I'll close by saying that although what I experienced was a huge shock to my system I at least had the balls to endure it. I challenge anyone reading this to give metal the same chance I gave this performance. Rant over.        

Sunday, 13 May 2012

Attica Rage "Ashamed", Christie Connor-Vernal photo shoot, and other stuff

Finally the Attica Rage "Ashamed" music video has surfaced. I completed the video around 3 months ago but the band decided to sit on it until they had announced their new record deal with "Off Yer Rocka records", which is possibly the most cringe worthy name for a record label I've ever heard (sorry boys). So like I said it is finally out there and looking back I could have done so much better with it. A combination of circumstances and time constraints on the day plus a lack of proper planning on my part just resulted in the video not coming off quite like it could have. So looking back I'm kind of disappointed with it but I'm sure the fans of the band will appreciate it. Hopefully my next music video will be a little more well conceived and technically better executed. Anyway, here's the video to check out and critique. Off the back of last months session video with solo artist Christie Connor-Vernal I decided to go in to photography mode and do a set of promo shots for her. So I brought her out to Larkhall and Chatelherault on what luckily turned out to be an amazing day weather wise. The shoot also ended up being quite successful. Christie certainly has a unique look and it allowed to be quite creative with the shots. My personal favourite is the head shot with the "Rock and Roll" tattoos in front. The shoot would have been a lot more fun if I wasn't suffering with a killer bout of man flu which I am now just getting over. Here are some of the best shots from the shoot. pic16 pic9 pic10 About a week ago I was at Rock for Funds at Ivory Blacks for a night of rock and to pick up an interview with a band I've been eager to see for a long time, the almighty Kyrbgrinder. I also thought it would be a good idea to film some of the set for "Metal Outlaw TV". This is something I'd like to more of for the channel as I think it will garner more interest than just interviews. The problem with interviews is that it's difficult to set yourself apart. Having said that from a production value stand point Metal Outlaw is in a different league from 90% of what's out there, including some stuff I've seen on Scuzz. Typically though with an interview I'm finding I get around 150 views per video. Not really a lot to be honest. They are very easy edits so I don't mind. Gig tracks on the other hand I'd expect to get between 300 and a 1000 views depending on the band. Maybe more if I could get one with a biggish band like say Fozzy (hint hint to anyone who works with Triple G). So going forward I'm definitely wanting to film more bands live or maybe even in a studio environment. Anyone interested contact me through the channel or email me at . In the mean time here is the first of two tracks I filmed for Kyrbgrinder. Staying on the subject of Metal Outlaw TV, I have just been confirmed as providing the official video coverage for this years LesFest, Scotlands only rock and metal festival. There are a lot of names I fancy interviewing at this event which is shaping up very nicely and any festival that I can travel to in 20 minutes is a winner for me. As long as the weather is not typical Scottish fair it should be helluva fun couple of days where I'll once again get to see Kyrbgrinder, Dirty Rose, Fantasist, and perv on the Amorettes. Roll on the end of June.

Saturday, 14 April 2012

Christie Connor Vernal session video and other news

Time for some more blabber about what I've been up to. A couple of weeks ago I was commissioned to do a video for my good friend Roddy Macaudio who was recording a couple of demo tracks for up and coming artist Christie Connor Vernal at the under construction Titan Studios West in Clydebank. Before I get started properly let me just say that this studio is going to be awesome when it is finished and any band or artist who take themselves seriously should be recording there. So with the shameless plug out of the way lets get on to the video. At the time of writing this it has had a fair amount of attention with nearly 1000 views in under a week which I'll admit is no Justin Bieber (who's success is proof that people are morons) but it is quite substantial. Most of this can be attributed to the fact superb quality of the recording and Christie's tremendous voice and song writing, but here I'll gladly take my third of the credit. Well actually it should be the medium of video that deserves the credit. Roddy and I discussed this at length during the process of the collaboration and we agree that the way people digest music is through video. We connect with things a lot more when we see the artist perform. Again I refer you back to Justin Beiber (douche). I'm not trying to downplay the recording or the musicianship they will always be more important but in this day and age video is a must. It seems though that musicians for the most part are slow to catch on to this or if they have are content to post mobile phone footage of them playing a track. One in a million times this will get them noticed but in the rest of the 999,999 cases it just makes them look like complete amateurs. This is where someone like myself comes in. Even something as simple as a well shot session video is enough to make a recording artist or band look a million times more professional and in this world if you are perceived as professional you ARE professional. So my advice to musicians, stop playing about with mobile phones and DIY recordings and intelligently spend a bit of cash to get a professional recording done with Roddy and have it filmed by myself. Feel free to check out the video below.

Last week I also attended the Breast Way Round charity event in Ayr at Harleys. The reason for doing so was to film another interview for my Youtube channel Metal Outlaw TV. This time I was interviewing the new look Attica Rage and getting to know their new bassist Colin Wilson. The interview went okay and featured camera work almost entirely done by my little brother, Keith. I thought it would be a good opportunity to give him a bit of experience... actually that is a massive lie. I really just fancied checking out a blonde getting in to the music across the room from me. If only I wasn't accompanied by my mum and she wasn't accompanied by hers I might plucked up the guts to actually chat her up. Probably best that didn't happen my chat up skills are famously poor. Anyway, back to the video. The whole point of Metal Outlaw TV is to create exposure for hard rock and metal bands through video. I'm doing this because 1. No one is doing this properly in Scotland and 2. The grass roots scene needs as much support as it can get. I actually know people who will not check out a band at the club level because of the, "they can't be good if they are playing in front of 100 people" logic. Quite frankly they are idiots. I have often been quoted saying, "Success and talent are in no way shape or form linked." It's a fact people. Just watch the Christie video and ask yourself, "is she more talented than Cheryl Cole?" Or if you are a fan of comedy ask yourself, "why isn't Billy Kirkwood better known than Russell Brand?" Or if you are in to film ask yourself, "why is Uwe Boll allowed to make terrible video game adaptations?" I rest my case. Anyway, back on topic, I hope you all support the channel and help it grow. Bands who want filmed should not be shy about getting in touch. I get content, you get content and viewers get content. We're all winners. Check out the Attica vid below (apologies about the video glitches. This happened while uploading to youtube.)