Gibbons’ Sophomore LP Is One “Bad” Blues Rock Record

Courtesy: Concord Records

ZZ Top front man Billy F. Gibbons is set to release his sophomore solo album The Big Bad Blues next month via Concord Records.  A little more than three years will have passed between the release of his debut solo record Perfectamundo and The Big Bad Blues when the latter is released.  The 11-song collection of originals and covers is a welcome new offering from Gibbons.  That is evidenced in part through the original composition ‘Let The Left Hand Know…’  It will be discussed shortly.  ‘My Baby She Rocks’ is another of the album’s entries that supports that statement.  It will be discussed a little later.  ‘Hollywood 151,’ yet another of Gibbons’ originals included in this album, is still more support for the noted statement.  When it is considered alongside the other noted songs and those not noted here, the whole of The Big Bad Blues proves to be a bad record in the best way possible.

Billy Gibbons’ sophomore solo album The Big Bad Blues is a bad record in the best way possible for those who understand the terminology.  It is a work that will appeal easily to fans of Gibbons’ work with ZZ Top and his own solo work as well as to blues purists.  That is saying a lot.  This is proven in part through the song ‘Let The Left Hand Know…’  The song, which comes almost midway through the record, is one of a handful of Gibbons’ original works included in the record.  In regards to its musical arrangement, it is a gritty, Texas style 12-bar blues work that moves so smoothly and creates a certain happiness in any listener.  It almost instantly conjures thoughts, again, of Gibbons’ work with ZZ Top while also lending itself to comparisons to some of the best works from Stevie Ray Vaughan.  That is even with the addition of the harmonica line.  Lyrically, it is just as upbeat, as it obviously centers on a man trying to get a woman to dance with him.  The man sings to the woman, “Just ease across the floor/Do it a little more/Let the left hand know where the right hand goes.”  He goes on to sing, “Just when you think you know/When everything gets a little slow/Gotta take a trip/Gotta shake that hip for sure/Just ease to the floor/And do a little more/Let the left hand know where the right hand goes.”  Plain and simple, this is a man trying to be smooth and get a lady to the dance floor.  Later in the song, the man even gets so bold as to say, “I wanna be your man/You know I can, for sure/Just ease across the floor/Just slid a little more/Let the left hand know where the right hand goes.”  Again, this is a guy who wants to dance with a woman and show her what he’s got, talent-wise.  It’s a quite relatable scenario…maybe less so today because courtship methods seem to be so different today than in the past, but still at least somewhat relatable.  That accessibility, in terms of the song’s lyrics, coupled with the upbeat, feel good musical arrangement makes this song easily one of the record’s best entries and one of the best of Gibbons’ originals included in the record.  That being the case, the song proves to be just one example of why the Big Bad Blues is such a good record.  Earlier in the record’s run, another similar lyrically formatted original titled ‘My Baby, She Rocks’ also serves to support that statement.

‘My Baby She Rocks’ is another work that instantly conjures thoughts of Stevie Ray Vaughan just by its title alone.  That’s because of its close similarity to SRV’s ‘Pride and Joy.’  Musically speaking, it does bear some semblance to said song, too, though maybe only loosely.  If anything, its arrangement is more akin to that of ‘Let The Left Hand Know…’ than ‘Pride and Joy’ thanks to its gritty, mid-tempo vibe.  Lyrically, it is far more akin to ‘Pride and Joy’ as Gibbons sings, ‘My baby she rocks/My baby she rocks/My baby she/My baby she rocks/My baby she rocks right to me/Rocks me all night long.”  He goes on to sing, “My baby she shakes/My baby she shakes/My baby she rocks/My baby she shakes/My baby shakes/Shakes me all night long.”  No explanation is needed here if any at all.  This is a man who is proud of his woman and is making it clear in no uncertain terms.  What’s really interesting here is that laid back vibe presented in the song’s musical arrangement as he sings the noted lines.  This is some one who’s secure in his relationship with his woman and is totally content.  Again, this is a fully relatable scenario.  That ability of listeners to relate to the song’s lyrics and to feel so good in the process makes this song stand on its own merits just as much as ‘Let The Left Hand Know…’  Keeping that in mind, ‘My Baby She Rocks’ is yet another example of what makes The Big Bad Blues such a big “Bad” record.  It still isn’t the last example of what makes this album stand out.  ‘Hollywood 151’ is yet another example of what makes Gibbons’ latest solo record work so well.

Whereas the previously discussed songs were slower in their arrangements, ‘Hollywood 151’ is a more upbeat song.  What’s more even with its familiar 12-bar blues approach, it doesn’t try to repeat the arrangements already performed in the other noted compositions.  It’s just a fun, feel good work.  As with the other songs, this is another one centered on a man who’s crazy for a woman.  This time, it’s a guy telling a woman that he’ll do this and that for a woman on Hollywood 151, including taking her around the world, etc.  He sings, “I’m all about you/Having fun/I’m gonna take you/With my gun/I’m gonna follow you out of town/I’m gonna get you upside down…you know you got me/Left and right/You know me/Clear out of sight/You got me girl/I know you know it…cause you’re Hollywood 151.”  It’s doubtful there’s any ill intent in the mention of the gun, so that should not be taken verbatim.  It likely has another meaning, especially considering everything else noted in this song.  That’s the case considering he sings about buying the woman a big new Cadillac and taking her around the world.  This is just a man who wants to woo a woman and win her over, once again.  The song’s musical arrangement does a good job of illustrating the positive energy being exuded by the man as he tries to win her over, too.  That understanding adds so much to the song.  When one keeps that in mind in considering this song and the enjoyment raised through the other songs (and those not noted here) the whole of the record’s songs makes the album in whole one “bad” blues rock record and a strong second solo effort from Gibbons.

Billy Gibbons’ sophomore solo record The Big Bad Blues is a “bad” album that blues purists and ZZ Top fans alike will appreciate.  It is chock full of arrangements and lyrics that will put a smile on the faces of any of the noted audiences.  That is evidenced in part through the easygoing, blues-rock of ‘Let The Left Hand Know…’ and its lyrical content.  The same can be said of ‘My Baby She Rocks’ and even ‘Hollywood 151.’  Between those songs and the others included in the record, but not noted here, the whole of this record proves to be a fun record for a wide range of audiences.  That includes, again, fans of ZZ Top and blues purists alike.  The album will be available September 21 via Concord Records.  More information on The Big Bad Blues is available online now along with all of Billy Gibbons’ latest news and more at:

 

 

 

Website: http://www.billygibbons.com

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/BillyFGibbonsOfficial

Twitter: http://twitter.com/billyfgibbons

 

 

 

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Mets, Phillies To Close Out Five-Game Series Sunday Night On ESPN’s ‘SNB’

Courtesy: ESPN

ESPN has a National League East divisional matchup on tap in this week’s edition of its weekly Sunday Night Baseball presented by Taco Bell broadcast.

The Philadelphia Phillies (68-54) will host the New York Mets (52-69) in the closer of the teams’ five-game series.  The series started Thursday with a one and one double-header between the NL East foes.  The Mets routed the Phillies in the first game 24-6 while the Phillies won game two 9-6.

Philadelphia took control of the series on Friday, defeating the Mets 4-2.  The Mets came back Saturday and evened things back up at two games each with a 3-1 win over the Phillies.  That means Sunday night’s game will be the rubber match between the teams.

Nick Pivetta (7-9) is expected to get the start on the mound for the Phillies Sunday night. He was last on the mound August 14 against the Boston Red Sox.  The Bosox won that game 2-1 with Philadelphia’ Tommy Hunter taking the loss.

Pivetta was strong in that game, pitching six innings, allowing only one run on three hits, one walk and one earned run while striking out six and allowing only one home run in that time.  So he will be looking to get the Phils back in the “W” column in this series’ finale against the Mets, whose playoff hopes at this point are nil.

Jason Vargas (2-8) is expected to get the start for the Mets Sunday night.  The 35-year-old has had a rough season so far, pitching a total of 53.1 innings in 13 games with an ERA of 8.10.  His last time on the mound was August 14 against Baltimore.

The Orioles took the win over the Mets in that game, 6-3.  Vargas’ struggles continued in that game as he allowed two runs on five hits, two earned runs while walking three batters and striking out only one over six innings.  He also allowed one home run in that time.

Just by the pitchers’ numbers, one would think Sunday night’s game is in the Phillies’ favor, but New York has been a surprise this weekend against Philadelphia.  That could be because the Mets know they have nothing to lose and don’t want to finish in the bottom of the league, causing them to play harder.

With the two losses to the Phillies this weekend, the Mets ended their two-game losing ski and back back into the “W” column, though win or lose it won’t be enough to help the team’s playoff hopes.  Philadelphia is 41-20 at home and 27-34 on the road so far this season. Saturday’s loss to the Mets drops the Phillies to 68-55 on the season, still keeping the team in the post season hunt.  The Mets will still be playing with a ire in their bellies because they have at least something to prove since they won’t be in the playoffs, so Sunday night’s game could go either way.

Matt Vasgersian will have the call for Sunday’s game.  He will be joined in the booth by analysts Alex Rodriguez and Jessica Mendoza for additional commentary.  Reporter Buster Olney will have all of the game’s latest news and interviews.

Jon Sciambi and Chris Singleton will cover the game on ESPN Radio.  The NL East matchup will also be simulcast on ESPN Deportes and on the ESPN app.

Sunday Night Baseball presented by Taco Bell will be preceded by Baseball TonightSunday Night Countdown presented by Chevrolet at 7 p.m. ET.with Karl Ravech at the helm.  Ravech will be joined by analysts Mark Teixeira, David Ross and Tim Kurkjian for additional commentary.

More information on ESPN’s MLB coverage is available online now at:

 

Website: http://www.espn.com/mlb

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/ESPN

Twitter: http://twitter.com/espn

 

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Everlast Debuts New LP’s Second Single, ‘Don’t Complain’

Courtesy: Martyr-Inc.

Veteran rapper Everlast has released another single from his upcoming album.

Everlast premiered the single ‘Don’t Complain‘ on Thursday.  The song, which comes from the veteran rapper’s forthcoming album Whitey Ford’s House of Pain, hints at influences from his 1998 album Whitey Ford Sings The Blues in regards to its musical arrangement.  Everlast (whose real name is Erik Schrody) said of the song’s lyrical content that it is “about some Hollywood cats I find humorously douchey.”

The debut this week of ‘Don’t Complain’ comes almost a week after the August 10 debut of the video for White Ford’s House of Pain‘s lead single ‘The Culling.’  The song itself was debuted July 19.

Whitey Ford’s House of Pain is Everlast’s first album of new material in seven years and his seventh full-length solo album.  Pre-orders for the 15-song record, which is due out September 7 via Martyr-Inc. are open now.  It features guest appearances from Aloe Blacc and Atmosphere rapper Slug.

The record’s track listing is noted below.

Track listing for WHITEY FORD’S HOUSE OF PAIN:
“One Of Us”
“The Culling”
“It Ain’t Easy”
“The Climb (Interlude)”
“The Climb”
“Slow Your Roll featuring Aloe Blacc”
“Smokin’ & Drinkin'”
“Oooohh (I Don’t Need You) featuring Slug”
“Summer Rain (Interlude)”
“Summer Rain”
“Don’t Complain”
“Break It Down”
“Break It Down (Interlude)”
“HeartBeat”
“Dream State”

Two live dates have already been announced in support of Whitey Ford’s House of Pain.  The first is scheduled for August 24 in Las Vegas, Nevada and the second October 14 in Sacramento, California.  All of the details are noted below.

Catch EVERLAST live:
Date               City                             Venue
8/24                Las Vegas, NV         Hard Rock Hotel & Casino (EllisMania XV)
10/14              Sacramento, CA       Aftershock Festival

More information on Everlast’s new album is available online now along with all of this latest new, tour updates and more at:

 

Website: http://www.martyr-inc.com

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/everlastmusic

Twitter: http://twitter.com/OGEverlast

 

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Mushroomhead’s ‘Volume III’ DVD Falls Short Of Expectations

Courtesy: Megaforce Records

The wait for Mushroomhead’s new DVD Volume III is finally over.  The band’s third full-length DVD was released August 17 via Megaforce Records, and while it is an entertaining presentation, it honestly has to be said that it could have been a much better presentation.  That is not to say that the DVD is a complete loss.  It does have some positives, but it also has cons that cannot be ignored, either.  The most notable of those cons is the general lack of actual live material.  This will be discussed later.  To the positive, audiences get in this latest DVD, a full collection of the band’s most recent videos taken from singles from the band’s 2014 album The Righteous and the Butterfly in one place.  The bonus content is just as notable as the videos.  When said content is considered along with the videos and the “live” material, the end result is a presentation that while entertaining, could have been better.

Mushroomhead’s latest full-length DVD – the simply titled Volume III – is a work that has been hyped quite a bit ahead of its release on August 17.  Sadly though, for all of the hype, the DVD proves ultimately be a presentation that while entertaining, could have been much better.  Again, that is not to say that the DVD is a total loss. It does have some positives, the most notable being the music videos culled for its presentation.  The videos presented are the companions to the singles from the band’s 2014 album The Righteous and the Butterfly – ‘Qwerty,’ ‘We Are The Truth,’ ‘Devils Be Damned’ and ‘Graveyard Du Jour.’  The videos for ‘We Are The Truth’ and ‘Devils Be Damned’ were just recently debuted as part of the promotional push for the DVD.  As an added bonus (which will be discussed later), audiences get some interesting commentary on at least two of said videos and even an alternate take on another.  Again, this will be discussed later along with the rest of the DVD’s bonus content.  The videos are, in essence, the center of the DVD’s presentation.  That is because the DVD’s actual live material is very limited here.  That is the DVD’s one major negative point.

In regards to its live material, audiences get in this material, two actual live performances at the most.  The rest of the “live” material is just one big montage of the band performing live at various venues with a bunch of dizzying, fast-paced shots throughout.  On the surface, this might not seem all that important, since technically audiences are getting at least a glimpse of the band’s live show.  The problem here is that because the actual live material is limited so directly, audiences are getting more of a preview of the band’s live show than an actual representation thereof.  Considering that live shows are where musical acts of any genre get the majority of their income, getting this limited preview of the band’s live show does more of a disservice to the band (and its new DVD) than a service.  That is especially the case considering how much of the DVD’s nearly two-hour total run time is taken up with the nonstop footage of the band performing and making its way across the country.  That time would have been much better served giving a much fuller presentation of the band’s live show and keeping the behind-the-scenes tour footage limited to a minimum as bonus material.  Speaking of the bonus material, the DVD’s bonus material is its other positive.

The bonus material included in Volume III proves to be a positive because of what it adds to the DVD’s overall viewing experience.  The noted behind-the-scenes tour footage is just one of those items that makes the bonus material notable.  Audiences get to see the band offstage and on, preparing for its shows and making the most of its time on the road in various ways.  It should be noted though, that some viewer discretion is advised in regards to the bonus content.  That is because there are a number of shots included in that bonus footage of women showing their breasts for the cameras.  While brief, the shots are long enough that they cannot be ignored.  So to that end, some discretion should be used.  Getting back on the topic at hand, that footage is not the only bonus footage included in the DVD’s presentation.  Audiences also get a full alternate take of the band’s video for ‘We Are The Truth’ that is completely unlike the final product that was recently debuted.  Instead of that Evil Dead themed work, the alternate take presents the band in front of the house used in that video, performing the song together with guest/touring vocalist Jackie Laponza in tow.  Along with that, audiences get some brief looks behind the cameras of the band’s other videos and even some entertaining commentary from an unexpected source (which won’t be revealed here for those who haven’t yet seen the DVD) for some of the videos, too.  All of that bonus material, when considered alongside the DVD’s feature music videos, gives audiences reason to watch this presentation at least once.  The lack of any real live material though, detracts from the DVD’s presentation is a fashion that cannot be ignored.  Keeping all of this in mind, Volume III proves to be an interesting new offering from Mushroomhead, but it is also one that could have been better.

Mushroomhead’s new DVD Volume III is an interesting new offering from the veteran Cleveland, Ohio-based metal outfit.  At the same time though, it is also a presentation that could have been better.  The music videos that obviously are the center of the DVD’s presentation, couple with the DVD’s  bonus material to give viewers at least some reason to watch.  The use of a conglomerate of live shots in place of any real live material (save for two songs) is a disservice to the DVD and the band that cannot be ignored.  The negative effect that it has on the DVD’s presentation does not go unnoticed.  Keeping all of this in mind, Volume III proves to be a far cry from what Mushroomhead has offered previously and a work that while interesting, just could have been so much better.  It is available now in stores and online.  More information on Volume III is available online now along with all of Mushroomhead’s latest news and more at:

 

 

 

Website: http://www.mushroomhead.com

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/mushroomheadofficial

Twitter: http://twitter.com/mushroomhead

 

 

 

To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment reviews and news, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it.  Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment reviews and news in the Phil’s Picks blog at https://philspicks.wordpress.com.

Mushroomhead Debuts ‘Devils Be Damned’ Video

Courtesy: Megaforce Records

Mushroomhead is giving audiences another preview of its upcoming DVD.

The veteran Cleveland, Ohio-based band debuted the video for its song ‘Devils Be Damned‘ today. Filmed inside the infamous Ohio State Reformatory, which doubled as the infamous Shawshank Prison (yes, that Shawshank Prison), from Castle Rock Entertainment’s 1994 drama The Shawshank Redemption.  The video features the band performing its new single at various locations inside the prison as a young girl makes her way through its halls before finally finding a place of comfort inside the otherwise imposing structure.

Band founder and drummer Steve “Skinny” Felton offered his own interesting insight into the video in a recent interview with Ultimate Guitar, saying that the same tunnel used by Tim Robbins’ character Andy Dufresne in The Shawshank Redemption was also used in this video.

“There’s a scene [in the video] where the little girl is crawling through the tunnel — that’s the same tunnel that Tim Robbins crawled through at the end of the movie — you know, the whole ‘Andy Dufresne – who crawled through a river of s*** and came out clean on the other side’ line — that’s the same tunnel she crawled through.”

The video’s debut comes a little more than a month after the debut of the video for ‘We Are The Truth.’  That video is themed after Renaissance Pictures’ famed 1981 horror movie Evil Dead.  Specifically, the video debuted July 8.

Both songs are included in the Mushroomhead’s most recent full-length studio recording, 2014’s The Righteous and the Butterfly.  The videos will both be included as part of the presentation for Volume III.

Volume III is scheduled to be released August 17. The band will launch a tour in support of the DVD the same day. The nearly month-long tour includes stops in Virginia Beach, Virginia; Seattle, Washington; Salt Lake City, Utah and a handful of other cities. The tour’s current schedule is noted below.

The Summer of Screams tour line-up:
MUSHROOMHEAD
Powerman 5000 (9-2 to 9-15)
The Browning
Psychostick (8-17 to 8-31)
Kissing Candice
Unsaid Fate
Voodoo Terror Tribe (8-17 to 8-30)/Earth Caller (8-31 to 9-15)

The Summer of Screams tour dates:
8/17 – Indianapolis, IN @ Emerson Theater

8/18 – Pittsburgh, PA @ Rex Theater
8/19 – Toronto, ON @ Rockpile West
8/21 – Manchester, NH @ Bungalow
8/22 – Poughkeepsie, NY @ The Chance
8/23 – Virginia Beach, VA @ Shaka’s
8/24 – Spartanburg, SC @ Groundzero
8/25 – Huntsville, AL @ Sidetracks Music Hall
8/26 – New Orleans, LA @ Southport Music Hall
8/28 – Houston, TX @ Houston Underground
8/29 – Austin, TX @ Come and Take It Live
8/30 – Laredo, TX @ Ethos Live
8/31 – Fort Worth, TX @ The Rail Club
9/2 – Los Angeles, CA @ 1720
9/4 – Orangevale, CA@ The Boardwalk
9/5 – Portland, OR @ Dante’s
9/6 – Seattle, WA @ El Corazon
9/7 – Billings, MT @ Pub Station
9/8 – Salt Lake City, UT @ The Complex
9/9 – Denver, CO @ Roxy Theater
9/11 – Merriam, KS @ Aftershock
9/12 – Waterloo, IA @ Spicoli’s
9/13 – Minneapolis, MN – Skyway Theatre
9/14 – Ringle, WI @ Q & Z Expo Center
9/15 – Chicago, IL @ Patio Theater

Along with its live dates, the band has also announced a handful of signing dates, which align with the band’s tour.  Those dates are noted below.

MUSHROOMHEAD Signing Dates: 
8/22 – Poughkeepsie, NY @ Darkside (611 Dutchess Turnpike) – Begins 6:00 PM
8/28 – Houston, TX @ Cactus (2110 Portsmouth St) – Begins 6:00 PM
8/29 – Austin, TX @ Waterloo (600 N Lamar Blvd) – Begins 5:00 PM
9/5 – Portland, OR @ Music Millennium (3158 E Burnside St) – Begins 6:00 PM (tentative, check local listing)
9/6 – Seattle, WA @ Silver Platters (2930 1st Ave S) – Begins 6:00 PM (tentative, check local listing)
9/7 – Billings, MT @ Ernie November (1825 Grand Ave) – Begins 6:00 PM

Volume III comes 10 years after the release of the band’s second DVD, aptly titled Volume II (2008) and 13 years after the release of its debut DVD, Volume I (2005). A trailer for the DVD is streaming online now here.

More information on Mushroomhead’s new DVD is available online now at:

 

Website: http://www.mushroomhead.com

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/mushroomheadofficial

Twitter: http://twitter.com/mushroomhead

 

To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews, go online to http://www.facebook.comphilspicks and “Like” it.  Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews in the Phil’s Picks blog at https://philspicks.wordpress.com.

 

 

‘Wild Kratts’ Second DVD Of 2018 Is “Twice As Nice” As The Year’s First Offering

Courtesy: PBSPBS Kids/Public Media Distribution

Over the course of the past six years, brother Chris and Martin Kratt have taken families around the world and taught fun and unforgettable lessons in biology, ecology, zoology and more through their hit animated series Wild Kratts.  The series has become one of PBS Kids’ biggest hit series since its debut, running now five seasons and a sixth very likely to be announced soon.  It has also led to the release of now 17 DVDs featuring the adventures of Chris, Martin and their friends Aviva (Athena Krakanis – Manifest, The Expanse, Low Winter Sun), Koki (Heather Bambrick – The Cat in the Hat Knows A Lot About That, Doozers, Atomic Puppet) and Jimmy Z (Jonathan Malen – The Mist, Mean Girls, Charlie Bartlett).  From North America’s desert southwest to the depths of the Atlantic to the frozen far reaches of the Arctic and Antarctic and beyond, the Wild Kratts gang has time and again given audiences unforgettable adventures and invaluable lessons in every episode.  Now thanks to Public Media Distribution, two more of those episodes are available in the latest Wild Kratts DVD, Adventures on the African Savannah.  As that title notes, this time the brothers Kratt and company are in Africa.  The two adventures featured in the 55-minute DVD are enjoyable in themselves.  The lessons connected to the stories are also enjoyable for the whole family.  Considering that content, the DVD’s relatively affordable average price point proves to be money well spent.  When it is considered alongside said content, all three elements make Wild Kratts: Adventures on the African Savannah yet another enjoyable addition to any family’s DVD library.

Adventures on the African Savannah, the second of Public Media Distribution’s Wild Kratts DVD releases so far this year – the first, Madagascar Madness, was released April 10 – is another successful and enjoyable presentation from PMD and PBS Kids.  It is a collection that despite featuring only two episodes, every family will find welcome in their DVD library.  That is actually due in part to the stories themselves.  This time out, Martin and Chris (and their friends) take on a game of tag in the first episode, “The Food Chain Game.”  Of course, this is no ordinary game of tag.  This game involves Chris and Martin racing to the top of the Savannah’s food web by touching and turning into various different animals that roam the savannah.  They start at the bottom and work their way up, all the while learning about each creature’s strengths and weaknesses.  By the time it’s all said and done, Aviva has crafted a giant food web from Chris and Martin’s friendly competition that plays directly into the lessons, which will be discussed shortly.  In the second of the brothers’ adventures, Chris and Martin face off in another competition.  This time it’s a test to see which is the dominant animal – a rhino or an elephant.  However, at least one person wants to ruin the fun.  That person is the Kratt gang’s longtime foe Zack Varmitech (Zachary Bennett – Designated Survivor, Total Drama All Stars, Ranger Rob).  Zach, who is jealous of Aviva’s accomplishments uses his mini-bots to disrupt Chris and Martin’s suits so that they can’t finish their competition.  In an added effort to ruin the group’s fun, his bots also disrupt the Tortuga’s systems, trapping Aviva, Jimmy and Koki inside…at least temporarily.  Obviously the story has a happy ending with Zack being defeated once again.  How that happens won’t be given away here, but it will leave viewers laughing once again.  Of course, this story offers its own subtle biology lesson that adds to the story’s enjoyment.  Said lesson will be discussed along with the biology lesson included in the DVD’s lead story.  Keeping in mind the enjoyment offered through the stories themselves, it creates a solid foundation for the DVD’s presentation.  That foundation gives audiences plenty of reason in itself to add this DVD to their DVD libraries.  The noted lessons tied into the DVD’s presentation give families even more reason to add the DVD to their Wild Kratts collections.

The basic biology lessons incorporated into each story are easily accessible for viewers of all ages.  The lesson incorporated into the lead story is straight forward.  It teaches the interconnection of different organisms within a given food chain.  It’s just one example, but shows in a simple fashion, the depth and diversity that is possible in any given food chain.  At the same time, viewers also learn some interesting facts about the given organisms and animals featured within the given food chain.  What’s really interesting to note here is that the writers don’t try to hide the educational content here, unlike in other episodes in which said content is smartly woven into the story.  It’s right out front.  Yet somehow even with the content being right out there, the writers have still managed to keep the episode interesting both for grown-ups and children alike.  The writing staff is to be highly commended for that.  The lesson is a little bit more subtle in the second story.  It basically highlights the adaptations that make different animals fitted for various climates and territories.  For instance, the walrus is more fitted for cold climes while certain reptiles are definitely not suited for the savannah.  The strengths and weaknesses of the rhino and elephant are both pointed out in the long run, too.  It’s just interesting to see so much incorporated into one story and done so smoothly in the process.  It doesn’t make the educational content so outright, balancing very well with the story itself.    When this is considered along with the balance of educational and entertaining content in the DVD’s lead story, it makes the educational content that much more valuable to the DVD’s presentation.  While the stories and lessons are both key to the DVD’s whole, they are not its only important elements.  The DVD’s rather affordable average price point makes it that much more welcome in any family’s home DVD library.

The average price point of Adventures on the African Savannah is $5.19, not counting taxes.  Adding tax, that price probably rises to almost $6.00 if not barely more than that. Considering the amount of entertainment and education that this DVD offers, even with just two episodes (at 55 minutes), that honestly is a rather affordable price.  It’s money well spent to entertain and educate children while also bringing the whole family together in the process.  That is something of which this country needs more – family togetherness.  That’s especially the case considering how television is in itself ripping families apart more and more because of content aimed at specific audiences.  Keeping all of this in mind, the DVD’s average price point is the proverbial cherry on top for its  presentation.  It is not a bad price to pay, even with tax, for that togetherness, education and entertainment.  To that end, this second Wild Kratts DVD offering this year is another welcome addition to any family’s Wild Kratts DVD collection.

Public Media Distribution’s second Wild Kratts DVD of the year, Adventures on the African Savannah, only boats two episodes from the hit animated series, but despite that, those two episodes offer audiences of all ages plenty to appreciate.  That is evidenced in part through the stories that make up the body of the DVD.  The lessons tied into the stories are expertly balanced in their presentation.  That balance shows the amount of time and thought put into each story’s writing overall.  The writers, again, are to be commended for such attention to detail.  The DVD’s rather affordable price point makes that content extra valuable and the DVD that much more worth the purchase in turn.  Keeping all of this in mind, all three elements join to make this DVD a presentation that will lead the whole family to want to join the Kratt brothers on their African Savannah adventures again and again.  It is available now and can be ordered direct via PBS’ online store.  More information on the DVD is available online along with lots of printables, activities and more now at:

 

 

 

Website: http://pbskids.org/wildkratts

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/wildkrattsofficial

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Shout! Factory TV, Twitch Team Up For Power Morphicon 2018 Coverage

Courtesy: Shout! Factory/Twitch

Power Rangers fans rejoice, it’s almost time for the bi-annual Power Morphicon conference again.  This year’s conference launches August 17 and runs through August 19. For those who won’t be able to be there, Shout! Factory and Twitch have partnered to cover the final day of this year’s conference live online via Shout! Factory’s official Twitch Channel.

Power Morphicon Live coverage starts August 19 at 10 a.m. PT/1 p.m. ET via Shout! Factory’s official Twitch Channel.  Shout! Factory’s Brian Ward will host coverage of the event, which features live interviews with various cast and crew members of each Power Rangers installment.  There will also be coverage of various panel discussions, special features and other highlights.

A stream of the event’s coverage will be available via VOD following the actual event’s close.  Viewers can view a trailer for Shout! Factory and Twitch’s coverage of Power Morphicon Live here.

More information on this and other events from Shout! Factory and Twitch is available online now at:

Website: http://www.shoutfactory.com

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/shoutfactoryofficial

Twitter: http://twitter.com/ShoutFactory

 

To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it.  Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews in the Phil’s Picks blog at https://philspicks.wordpress.com.