Review 2330

Trent’s Music Heaven is not just a weblog, it also provides a service to the online music community. The site design is a little bit scattered, but Trent’s main projects – the guitar tablature and song lyrics – are kept right up front.

I’m not a guitarist myself, so the tabs are a bit lost on me. I can, however, see that they are nicely presented – putting up tabs online requires a little bit of design know-how so they’ll appear right, and Trent has done a great job with that. (And yes, he even has Stairway to Heaven up there!)

There aren’t as many lyrics as there are tabs, but it is such a treat to view lyrics online without having seventeen pop-up windows opening while I’m trying to read the words.

The archives are a little hard to browse – I’m not terribly familiar with the Nucleus CMS, so I’m not sure if there’s an easier way to view them. I tried to view the archives from Trent’s “general” category to see what guitar tips and articles he’s linked to, but I could only find a couple of entries in that category, even though I know there are more because they’re listed on the “Previous Posts by Month” page.

Trent’s also implemented some additional features, mostly Nucleus plugins. Any entry can be forwarded to a friend by e-mail, or displayed in a printer-friendly format. There are smilies available in the comments, and an option to search his site using Google.

I’m rating Trent’s Music Heaven a 4 for a few reasons. First, it’s nice to see a blog that’s also a helpful public service. I also like that Trent interacts with his readers, responding to their comments directly on the site. He’s also got some interesting links, mostly in the blogroll – and I hadn’t even heard of Nucleus before! Trent’s done very well with his Music Heaven, and hopefully he’ll keep up the good work.Trent’s Music Heaven

Review 2293

Ah, gray, white and black, my favorite combination. A nice, attention-grabbing name too: brainrazor. From all appearances, this is a promising site.

And it is a site that tries to be promising. This is fairly apparent from the writing style of netshade, site owner (presumably). The tone is pompous, with ‘big’ words thrown in. The occasional flowery ‘doth’ doth come in too. The average reader used to most journals’ casual tone might need a little readjustment, but once you get used to netshade you’ll find that his entries are often funny and insightful.

The disappointment is that we know squat about netshade him/herself (my guess – it’s a he). No background information, no stats, not even a name. Perhaps netshade can do something about that. Also, the links section is a little messy, what with them not being in alphabetical or categorical order. Too many frames in one page is also sometimes a hindrance.

However, if you have the time, I’m sure you’ll delight yourself going through the various random links and images on the page. The reader participation is quite cosy too.

The verdict: this is a site that is so much more fun if you are a friend of the site owner. Which is why you should go over there and make friends with netshade.brainrazor

Review 2330

“Helping Out The Music Lover Since June 2002…”

Initial impressions were good. A good layout and a well organised, well respected source for guitar tabs and song lyrics. The site was obviously centred around guitar music, which is where I decided to call in an expert:

Enter my brother. Wearing a Jimi Hendrix T-shirt, electric guitar slung over his shoulder, humming Voodoo Chile. After some strumming of his guitar and monosyllabic grunts, he assured me that the tabs were all accurate (apparently they’re not on a lot of tab sites). The site, in his opinion, didn’t cover as many genres as he’d like to see, focusing more on recent music. I, however, was impressed with the list I saw, ranging from the hugely popular Coldplay, right through to the Goo Goo Dolls’ Iris and Led Zeppelin’s Stairway To Heaven.

My brother’s interest in Clapton and Hendrix meant that he didn’t stay long, but he admitted that it was a good site for the large number of guitar players interested in chart music, and he liked the tips, such as Tuning Your Guitar. He also felt that this would be an ideal site for beginners.

Viewing Trent’s Music Heaven more as a weblog, there were many elements of the site that I liked. The comments are displayed on the main page under each post. Whilst on more personal sites this can sometimes override the original post, here it works well, and along with a referrals list, creates an interactive aspect.

Trent’s Music Heaven is a specialist site, and to someone like myself who has no interest in guitar music there is no real reason to go there. My brother’s reluctance was that he is used to sites such as and Olga, where everything you want is already there. He wasn’t used to the weblog element, where you check back daily for updates. For guitar enthusiasts, especially those who also have an interest in weblogging, this site is a rich resource.
Trent’s Music Heaven

Review 2330

I always wonder what a site is going to be about when it is simply titled using the author’s name. When I landed upon Trent Adams (dot) com, I knew right away what the site was going to be about. A huge guitar called out to me, and I knew I was going to be reading about music.

While I’m a big music fan, I don’t know too much about guitar. However, the writing style that Trent demonstrates is fantastic. Every post is well thought out and informative. The author is truly interested in what his readers want, and helps them out anyway he can with new information. I took note that he takes requests on both tabs and lyrics.

I immediately fell in love with the design of this site. It looks really crisp and organized. The guitar in the background is definitely a plus, especially because it gives the reader a clue as to what the website is about. The archives are easily accessible and I found no errors in any part of this website, only excellence.

There are many bonus features to this site. There is a section about song lyrics as well as a section about guitar tabs, for those who play. The author also has a background page telling about him and his love of music. This is one of the few blogs that I have seen completely dedicated to the guitar and music, and that makes it unique.

While this wouldn’t be a site I would read everyday, I believe it would be a good site for a music enthusiast to read, especially those who play the guitar. This blog is aimed at musicians, not the average blog reader.Trent’s Music Heaven

Review 2280

SKOB (Some Kind of Bliss) is crispy and best served with a nice glass of slightly chilled grape juice. It has a clean layout and a clear purpose – to disclose the life of this guy nicknamed SKOB. It is full of thoughts, musings, questions and teachings about life. For example, “bring a friend when protesting. Standing by yourself is a drag, even when you are surrounded by like-minded people.”

SKOB, the author and subject of this autobiographical and daily slice of existence is written with the usual cool candor of a journalist. This may have something to do with the author’s journalism background. Everything you would expect to find in a well-written expose or investigative journalistic piece are presented here. SKOB, as author, uses an interestingly detached perspective to discuss the current events of his own daily life.

This ‘blogs gimmick is participating semi-regularly in One Word. Featuring the 60-second ramblings and musings on a single word. Every now and then, about once a week, you can expect SKOB to wax poetic on a single word. Sometimes it’s interesting.

SKOB, the author, spends most of his time discussing political and environmental issues as they relate to his own personal activism. There is the usual journalistic candor behind every post which makes it an informative and well written ‘blog. The ideas and concepts behind the issues are well presented, as are the facts. In fact, there is something quite applaudable in SKOB’s economical ability to present information.

As clean and as crisp a design as this site has it only further proves that presentation is a mode of content. The content is as crisp and clean as the layout, both notably lacking that one thing any truly great work of word play may possess – ethos. A writers ability to convey upon their readership a perspective of suffering and passion within the characters presented is what drives the exhibitionistic tendencies online journal readers thrive on. I would simply ask for more commentary on the condition of being SKOB rather then a precisely written highlight reel of what SKOB did and/or does. What little self dialogue that is included is always well observed and tastefully written. I am asking for more because it makes the experience of reading a journal that much more personal.

Some Kind of Bliss is a good reference for those just starting out as a blog or online journal writer. There is plenty of style and authority to be found in every sentence making it an excellent resource of what to do. The basics of journal writing are covered quite well. Keep an especially close eye on the topics he chooses and the form of his writing. SKOB certainly has a well defined voice and something to say on every topic he’s chosen so far.

Some Kind of Bliss