Joe Hadsall

Joe Hadsall

Globe Features Editor

Show me a hobby, and I'll show you a way to burn money.

Take disc golf, which should cost just a $5 Frisbee and a pair of good walking shoes. Heck, you can get a disc for free from one of the participants at a business expo. But an enthusiast can blow a wad of cash stocking up on Innova flying discs and a good bag.

If music is a hobby, a lot of money can be poured into an instrument. Computer gaming can get expensive quickly. Golf, jogging, camping, hunting and fishing should, in theory, be relatively inexpensive. But I can think of a Springfield-based business that will gladly take your credit card and give you the latest, greatest, newest, technologically-advanced geegaws and doodads that you never needed in the first place.

So I shouldn't be surprised that kite flying can get just as expensive. But I'm still geeked to see some of those high-dollar kites in action.

Tomorrow is the Kites Over Route 66 festival, a two-day celebration of aerial cloth canvases and string. Many top-notch kite flyers, and their kites which can cost more than $200 each, will decorate the sky with soaring stunts and dizzying dives.

And, of course, there are the vendors. I plan to stay away from them, actually. Not because I'm trying to stand on some highfalutin' moral platform about how hobbies should be inexpensive.

I'll probably take one look at a stunt kite in action and be tempted to blow my paycheck on one. Sorry, vendors.

~ Because there is no way Jeremiah Tucker will ever review a metal album, I know it's up to me. With that in mind, four words sum up my feelings about Sevendust’s new album, “Cold Day Memory”: Welcome back, Clint Lowery.

The guitarist left the band in 2004 to join his brother’s effort, Dark New Day, but returned in 2008. Neither Lowery nor Sevendust appeared bettered by the split, and a few listens of the new album tell me it’s a welcome reunion.

The CD sounds like vintage Sevendust with some polyrhythmic enhancements. “Karma” and “Splinter” stand out with 6/8 beats and intricate phrases. “Unraveled,” which has been playing like crazy on rock radio, and “Forever” feature Lajon Witherspoon’s blistering vocals and the band’s traditional use of unison musical phrases that pack a punch to the gut (in a good way).

I’ve read some reviews that pan the effort, calling the new CD too repetitive and uninspiring. Though I disagree, “Cold Day Memory” doesn’t give me enough evidence to mount a solid debate.

Several of the album’s latter songs blend together, there’s little variety and there’s no ethereal, haunting song such as “Skeleton Song” or “Xmas Day.” (The reason that void stands out is because the band is so damn good writing those types of songs. Listen to “Angel’s Son” and tell me you don’t feel your spine quiver.)

But overall, I’m pleased with the effort. As I told design chief and fellow Sevendust fan Brent Fisher, this is the album I’ve been waiting for since 2003’s “Seasons.” I can’t put my finger on it, but Lowery’s return leads to a more full sound.

~ Benji Tunnell, in his review of “Kick-Ass,” mentions legendary movie critic Roger Ebert. Though I respect Ebert’s views on movies, he is clueless when it comes to video games.

Ebert wrote a column stating exactly why video games will never be considered an art form. Citing the speech of video game developer Kellee Santiago, he used rambling, dithering definitions of art that seemed to change with every paragraph.

I could go dental and pick out everything Ebert got wrong, but I don’t have to. Santiago already did, and she made Ebert look like Vincent Gallo in the process:

“It doesn’t seem that Ebert has played many, if any video games,” she wrote. “And if that’s the case, then his opinion on the subject isn’t relevant anyways.”

There’s more to the quote, plenty of links and some debate on my blog, imgeekedout.wordpress. com.

Joe Hadsall is Features Editor for The Joplin Globe.

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