Piecing It Together

I know what you’re thinking… “David, you started a podcast instead of getting the new album out?!” Well I have one question for you… How did you know before I told you that this post was going to be about my new podcast?

ANYWAY… I wanted to post a quick little blog post about my new project, Piecing It Together. It is my new movie podcast where I’ll be discussing movies with various co-hosts and also giving little previews of new music I’m working on. So if you dig my music, you’ll want to listen. And if you dig movies, you’ll want to listen.

And if you like me, then PLEASE go subscribe in the Podcast App of your choice, and if that app happens to be iTunes, RATE & REVIEW the show! It helps! And it costs you nothing but a few little seconds of your time.

My Favorite Stuff of 2017

NOTE: This was supposed to be posted around New Years but I got super sick… I’m still getting over it actually… So here it is, a little half-assed because now that I’m finally getting through this cold, I want to move on to new things and not keep working on this old stuff haha. But here it is anyway. Enjoy!

It’s that time of year again. As I did last year, it’s time to look back at the things that kept me entertained in 2017. I sort of have enough music, TV and video-games this time to do proper lists, but I figured for the sake of consistency, I’ll do like I did last year and do my big Movies list, and then a separate overall list combining everything else. You can also check out 2016’s list for a refresher if you want, or just jump into my 2017 lists. Enjoy!

15 Things from 2017 That Kept Me Entertained (In No Particular Order)

  • Nintendo Switch – The biggest non-movie thing that happened in 2017 for me was Nintendo’s insane comeback with the Switch. Who would have thought that 30 years after the classic NES originals in the Mario and Zelda series, that Nintendo would pretty much make the new best entries? The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild and Super Mario Odyssey are two of the best video-games I’ve ever played. Period. The Mario game is just pure non-stop fun, and the Zelda game is a revelation. If it holds up when I eventually go back to play it again one day (and keep in mind I beat it with only 19% – yes, NINETEEN percent of the game completed), I might even call it the best game ever made. On top of that we also got the crazy Mario Vs Rabbids game, a bunch of other first-party Nintendo games that I didn’t even have that much time for, and some excellent third-party games like Steamworld Dig 2 and Blaster Master. The Nintendo Switch is just weird and unique enough to be Nintendo, and is the most fun video-game system to come along in a long time.
  • Jason Isbell & The 400 Unit – “The Nashville Sound” – The next album on this list, Ryan Adams’ “Prisoner” in any other year would have easily been my favorite album of the year, but Jason Isbell may have made the album of his career… Which is saying a lot when I considered his “Southeastern” album one of the best albums of the decade. The rock songs freaking rock and the sad songs are sad as hell. It’s poignant, every song is great. It’s just a perfect album and a hell of a surprise. 
  • Ryan Adams – “Prisoner” – Not so much a surprise is how great Ryan Adams’ new album is. Along with his also released collection of B-Sides, this was my most listened to album of the year, and one of my favorites of my favorite solo-artist’s career. The song “Outbound Train” may possibly be my favorite song. He rules.
  • The War On Drugs – “A Deeper Understanding” – Definitely my 3rd favorite album of the year… But to say that means I listened to it maybe a half dozen times because pretty much all I listened to were the previous two and podcasts haha. But this is a fantastic album.
  • Nine Inch Nails – “Add Violence” – I would have stuck with just listing my Top 3 but I wanted to add NIN’s new EP because first of all it’s the first NIN album in a decade that I’ve continued to listen to on occasion after the first week of release (sorry Trent), and second of all, even though I had already been considering this long before these EPs came out, my new direction of planning on releasing EPs in 2018 is at least partially influenced by NIN’s new EP direction.
  • Fargo – My favorite show of the year. I don’t get why people didn’t like Season 3 as much as previous seasons. It was FANTASTIC. All the best parts of a movie and all the best parts of this new age of Television combined. The best cast on TV. Everything about it was amazing.
  • Vice Principals – Vice Principals was such a great series. As much as I hate to see it go, I think two seasons was the perfect length for this crazy story and insane characters.
  • It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia – This show shows absolutely no signs of slowing down. I hope it’s on the air forever.
  • Curb Your Enthusiasm – Finally, more Larry David. And he’s as great as ever. 
  • GLOW – Hey, Marc Maron can act good! The show was great too. Can’t wait for Season 2!
  • At Home With Amy Sedaris – It’s been too long since we’ve had a show with Amy Sedaris in the center. She is the freaking best. So funny.
  • Episodes – The Series finale of Episodes. It’s not the best show, but I love it, and it was a perfect ending. 
  • Wet Hot American Summer: Ten Years Later – Also not the best show, but it’s still David Wain and crew being ridiculous. Such fun.
  • American Horror Story: Cult – Last year I said that the season of American Horror Story was the first one I truly liked… Who would have thought I’d like two in a row? This was definitely the best season of the show.
  • Facebook – I hate to give Facebook any credit because it’s a terrible thing and ruining all of our lives and I’m probably physically addicted… But man did I have fun on Facebook this year… Dammit…

And now on to the movies. I thought last year was a big year for movies but wow did I see a lot this year haha. It was a pretty great year too. Lots of truly amazing films. I’m not going to stop and talk about each one or anything like that, but rather list them all out, in order from Best to Worst, and then a separate list of movies that technically were 2016 movies but didn’t open in Las Vegas until 2017, and then a short list of movies from 2017 that I’ve been dying to see but aren’t open here yet.

  1. mother!
  2. War for The Planet of the Apes
  3. Ingrid Goes West
  4. Good Time
  5. Three Billboards Outside Ebbing Missouri
  6. The Big Sick
  7. A Ghost Story
  8. The Disaster Artist
  9. The Florida Project
  10. Star Wars: The Last Jedi
  11. The Shape of Water
  12. Logan
  13. Thor: Ragnarok
  14. Last Flag Flying
  15. Alien Covenant
  16. Wind River
  17. Get Out
  18. Brigsby Bear
  19. Colossal
  20. It
  21. Lost In London
  22. Baby Driver
  23. Stronger
  24. The Killing of a Sacred Deer
  25. Free Fire
  26. Wonder Woman
  27. King Arthur
  28. The Babysitter
  29. Lady Bird
  30. Power Rangers
  31. Kingsman: The Golden Circle
  32. Kong: Skull Island
  33. Logan Lucky
  34. It Comes At Night
  35. The Meyerowitz Stories
  36. Battle of the Sexes
  37. The Lego Batman Movie
  38. John Wick: Chapter 2
  39. Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2
  40. XXX: The Return of Xander Cage
  41. Happy Death Day
  42. Split
  43. Wilson
  44. Justice League
  45. The Fate of The Furious
  46. Detroit
  47. Downsizing
  48. Jumanji: Welcome To The Jungle
  49. Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man Tell No Tales
  50. Transformers: The Last Knight
  51. Rough Night
  52. The Great Wall
  53. Snatched
  54. American Made
  55. The Glass Castle
  56. Spider Man: Homecoming
  57. Blade Runner 2049
  58. The Mummy
  59. The Hitman’s Bodyguard
  60. The House
  61. The Beguiled
  62. Ghost In The Shell
  63. Home Again
  64. Atomic Blonde
  65. American Assassin
  66. A Cure For Wellness
  67. All The Money In The World
  68. The Belko Experiment
  69. The Foreigner
  70. Valerian
  71. Annabelle: Creation
  72. Suburbicon
  73. Landline
  74. Dunkirk
  75. Life
  76. Daddy’s Home 2
  77. Fist Fight
  78. LBJ
  79. A Dog’s Purpose
  80. Roman J Israel, Esq
  81. Baywatch
  82. The Dark Tower
  83. All Eyes On Me

2016 Movies I saw: A Monster Calls, Live By Night, Silence, 20th Century Women, The Founder, Patriots Day, Jackie.

2017 Movies I didn’t get to see but I’d probably love: I, Tonya, Phantom Thread, The Post… a bunch more but I think it’s time to close up 2017 and move on! Haha.

Hope you enjoyed the listings. Here’s to a great 2017, and here comes a great 2018.

David Rosen is an award-winning music composer. He composes original music for films, commercials, jingles, video-games and all other kinds of media projects. He has a vast music library of original tracks available for licensing and is also available for custom compositions. Contact him on the ABOUT page for pricing and availability for your next project.

My Favorite Stuff of 2016

It’s that time of year again. “Best of lists” here we go! Actually this year I kind of got lazy and just did 2 lists… One is a list of every theatrically released movie I saw, in order from best to worst. And two is a list of other stuff I loved that came out this year from every area of entertainment. Let start with #2

15 Things From 2016 That Kept Me Entertained (In no particular order)

  • The Raveonettes Anti-Album – Technically this album comes out in 2017, but every month of 2016 The Raveonettes released a new song, for the eventual album release in January 2017. It was a fun, exciting way to keep putting out new music, and it just so happens to be some of the best songs of their career as far as I’m concerned.
  • Butch Walker – Stay Gold – I’ve loved Butch Walker since the days I used to work at Sony Music and this is probably his best release in almost 10 years. He rules and this album rules.
  • Sturgill Simpson – A Sailor’s Guide To Earth – Apparently I like country now. I blame Ryan Adams and Jason Isbell, but Sturgill Simpson is the most country album I’ve probably ever listened to and I love it.
  • Inside – One of the most mind-blowing video-games ever made. It’s really no surprise since it’s the follow-up (sort of sequel but not really) to Limbo which is easily one of my Top 10 favorite video-games ever made. This game is insane and beautiful and haunting and I’ve been dying to play it for my 3rd time already…
  • Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End – The conclusion to the Uncharted series. It was a perfect ending. One of the best games in the series, and they really managed to tie it up perfectly. No game tells a story like Uncharted and this finale did not disappoint. Now lets hope they make more.
  • Horace & Pete – Louis CK’s gamble of a TV series that was produced with his own money and released only on his own website. It is one-of-a-kind, hilarious and heartbreaking, and one of the best things I saw all year. Leave it to Louis to try something completely new and unlike anything else I’ve ever seen.
  • Silicon Valley – A great new season to one of the best shows on TV.
  • Ash Vs Evil Dead – Another of my favorite TV shows got a great new season as well. The season finale was a little bit of a let down, but I can’t wait to see where it goes in Season 3.
  • Vice Principals – A new show from Danny McBride and Jody Hill. It started off… different and not quite what I was expecting. But then it got weirder and weirder and darker and darker and it’s just amazing. I can’t wait for the next season.
  • Stranger Things – Honestly I’m a little burned out from Stranger Things-mania, but it really was a fun, exciting show. And the score definitely influences some of the synthier moments on my new album Head Like Fire.
  • The People VS OJ Simpson – Who would have thought this mini-series would be so perfect and so compelling? Great performances and an insane amount of tension considered we all knew what would happen. This was a huge surprise and I loved it.
  • American Horror Story: My Roanoke Nightmare – I don’t know that I ever truly liked American Horror Story. From the first season I’ve done nothing but complain about it, and I downright hated a few of the seasons. But this was definitely my favorite one and a really fun, inventive story made it one of the best TV moments of the year.
  • The Night Of – Awesome show. I kind of hope it doesn’t come back though. It’s perfect as is. I think it is coming back. Ah, whatever. Great show.
  • Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt – I love this show. I love everything about it. And I loved the new season.
  • The Election – I don’t know if you heard, but there was a presidential election this year. My guy lost in the primaries. A con-artist won the whole thing. It was a major shit-show. But hey, I like to laugh and it was non-stop gold. Lets hope these next 4 years foster some great music and movies haha. And who knows… Maybe he won’t be so bad. Maybe…

And now, on to the movies. For me, movies are my year, and this was a pretty big year for movies for me. I saw a lot of them. And I managed to list them all out (not counting made-for-TV/Video movies or older movies that I saw for the first time). In order of how much I liked them. Here’s the list with no added descriptions or anything because it’s time to go make some New Years Eve snacks. Enjoy, and don’t tell me it was a bad year for movies! Every year is a great year for movies!

  1. Swiss Army Man
  2. 10 Cloverfield Lane
  3. The Nice Guys
  4. Anomalisa (Technically a 2015 Movie that didn’t open until 2016 here)
  5. Nocturnal Animals
  6. The Jungle Book
  7. Manchester By The Sea
  8. The Lobster
  9. Hacksaw Ridge
  10. La La Land
  11. The Neon Demon (saw At home)
  12. Moonlight
  13. Sausage Party
  14. Deadpool
  15. Hail, Caesar!
  16. Miss Sloane
  17. Fences
  18. American Honey
  19. Green Room
  20. Midnight Special
  21. Lion
  22. The Accountant
  23. Loving
  24. Don’t Breathe
  25. Don’t Think Twice
  26. Ghostbusters
  27. Bloodfather
  28. Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice
  29. Popstar: Never Stop Never Stopping (saw at home)
  30. Neighbors 2 (Saw at home)
  31. Allied
  32. Passengers
  33. Sully
  34. The Witch
  35. The Brothers Grimsby
  36. Captain America: Civil War
  37. Rogue One: A Star Wars Story
  38. The Girl on the Train
  39. Arrival
  40. Bridget Jones Baby (saw at home)
  41. Doctor Strange
  42. Hell or High Water
  43. Mike and Dave Need Wedding Dates
  44. TMNT: Out of the Shadows
  45. Bleed For This
  46. Demolition
  47. The Conjuring 2
  48. Zoolander 2
  49. Yoga Hosers (saw at home)
  50. Everybody Wants Some
  51. Independence Day: Resurgence
  52. The Birth of a Nation
  53. War Dogs (saw at home)
  54. Mojin
  55. Gods of Egypt (saw at home)
  56. Suicide Squad
  57. The Magnificent Seven
  58. The Legend of Tarzan
  59. Ben Hur

Movies I didn’t get to see that I plan on seeing ASAP: The Monster, Kubo, Jackie, Silence, The Founder… And I’m sure a ton more haha.

See you all next year!

David Rosen is an award-winning music composer. He composes original music for films, commercials, jingles, video-games and all other kinds of media projects. He has a vast music library of original tracks available for licensing and is also available for custom compositions. Contact him on the ABOUT page for pricing and availability for your next project.

THIS STUFF RULES: My Favorites Movies & Music of 2014

I usually post these lists on Facebook, but I figured… Why not make a blog post about it? Without any big build up, here are my favorite Movies & Music of 2014, with a little commentary on each.

MOVIES

  1. Birdman – One of the most original, beautiful movies I’ve seen in a long time. Even funnier than I expected, and weirder too. It’s been a while since Charlie Kaufman made a movie (2008 I believe), and this is the closest thing I’ve seen since then. It makes your brain work overtime. I haven’t stopped thinking about it since the day I saw it. Also, seeing Edward Norton really going for it for the first time in years was just awesome.
  2. Nightcrawler – An amazing movie filled with excellent performances. Jake Gyllenhaal deserves Best Actor for this. Such a dark, crazy movie and an uncompromising vision.
  3. Gone Girl – David Fincher’s best movie since Zodiac. One of his best ever really. Also happens to be the first time in years that I saw a movie in the theater twice!
  4. The Grand Budapest Hotel – I’m one of the only people (let alone Wes Anderson fan) who didn’t like Moonrise Kingdom, so I was so happy that this ended up being my favorite film of his since The Darjeeling Limited (which I know most people DIDN’T really like). This is definitely up there with his best films though. Ralph Fiennes’ performance is an absolute classic.
  5. Edge Of Tomorrow – Probably the best action / sci-fi movie I’ve seen in years, ruined by a bad title that apparently made people not see it. Everyone should see it though. It’s great.
  6. Whiplash – An excellent, dark, small film that centers around music and has one of the best performances of the year from JK Simmons.
  7. Obvious Child – A perfect little comedy. Jenny Slate rules. See it.
  8. The Badadook – The best horror movie I’ve seen in forever. I can’t stand most horror movies because it’s usually just a bunch of loud noises and jump scares with the same old recycled story. This one SOUNDS like it’s going to be that based on the synopsis, but it’s about much more, and the scares come from a much more real place. One of the rare times when hype didn’t kill a movie.
  9. Foxcatcher – I honestly walked out of the theater thinking I didn’t like much about it other than the performances (seriously great all around but Mark Ruffalo steals the show here). But the movie stayed with me and I didn’t stop thinking about it for days and the more I think about it, the more I love everything about it. It also may be my favorite score of the year.
  10. Guardians of the Galaxy & The Lego Movie (TIE) – I made these a tie because they’re both super mainstream blockbusters, and they both happened to be awesome. So many of the big blockbusters disappointed me this year (ESPECIALLY Godzilla), so to see some major movies really nail it was great.

Honorable Mentions: Wild, Chef, They Came Together, Exodus:Gods & Kings, The Equalizer, Fading Gigilo, Noah, Dawn of the Planet Of the Apes, Interstellar, The Interview

Didn’t See Yet But I’ll Probably Like: Inherent Vice, Boyhood, Big Eyes, American Sniper, A Most Violent Year… Plenty More.

MUSIC

  1. Ryan Adams – Ryan Adams – Most of you know how much I love Ryan Adams and this is one of his most consistent albums ever. Not his best, but a lot of really perfect, great songs. And I love the 80s light rock influence here.
  2. Damien Rice – My Favorite Faded Fantasy – I finally got to see Damien Rice this year which was an amazing experience, and some of these new songs (after an 8 year hiatus) stand as some of his best.
  3. The War On Drugs – Lost in The Dream – I love this freaking album. And I joked on Facebook that it sounds like what I’d sound like if I tried to form a band. Well what I’d want to sound like anyway haha.
  4. Lana Del Rey – Ultraviolence – People hate her, but I look at it like a movie. I don’t judge a film based on the credibility of the filmmakers, same goes for her music. Plus “West Coast” is an absolutely killer song.
  5. Jack White – Lazeretto – Jack White rules. I don’t love this album… It’s a little too jammy, but some of the tracks are absolutely awesome and even at his worst, he’s still better than most other artists.
  6. Michael Jackson – XScape – Much better than I could have ever imagined. Some truly great songs on here, and getting to hear the demos on the bonus disc was really cool too.
  7. Bruce Springsteen – High Hopes – Another great Bruce Springsteen album.
  8. St Vincet – St Vincent – A really unique, awesome album. I don’t know if other people have said this before, but this reminds me of what Nine Inch Nails would sound like if it was made by a girl. Not a girl imitating Nine Inch Nails… Because this is much lighter and less angry… But a girl creating a very female album, that shares a lot in common with what a Nine Inch Nails album is. Maybe that doesn’t make sense, but I love it haha.
  9. The Raveonettes – Pe’Ahi – Some of The Raveonettes albums take time to grow on me. This is one of them. I don’t love it yet. but I just know that I will.
  10. Tom Petty – Hypnotic Eye – I haven’t even finished listening to the album yet, but it’s got some classic Tom Petty songs on it.

Honorable Mention: Jason Isbell – Southeastern was my REAL Number 1 favorite album of 2014, but it actually came out in 2013, I just never heard of him until now. Same goes for The Book of Mormon Soundtrack which came out a while ago, but I refused to listen to until I got to see the show live. Now that I’ve seen it, I’ve been listening to the album and love it.

I was going to also do lists for TV and Video Games, but I found myself really reaching to even remember what I had seen and played haha. So I think we might as well just leave it at this

Every year people say that there were no good movies and there’s no good music. I think that’s bullshit.  There’s a lot of great stuff out there, you just gotta know where to look…

– David

PS. I’m aware that the numbers in the lists are crossed out. It’s a weird bug I’ll have to look into haha.

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