Kairos Revisited

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I remember tuning in to Live and Direct on DaSouth, a show hosted by J Blaze, as often as possible. The show was designed to showcase the various unheralded artists that were bold enough to put their songs on the chopping block. And J was a chopper for real, results were always mixed and he was not one to mince words. I loved being able to find out who was under the radar and worth supporting. That’s when J introduced a new OH rapper named Armond, playing the track “Rearview/Dashboard” from the Dreaming Out Loud album. From beat drop, I was intrigued by the combo of the instrumental’s vibe (shout to Doc) and Armond’s steady delivery of ‘different new, different new’ content. We exchanged contact info in the chatroom, soon to discover we both worked for the same multinational bank.

I’ve never met Armond, hopefully we can fix that sooner than later, but in our almost four years of friendship I can genuinely say he’s like another younger brother. We’ve discussed life, fatherhood, manhood, church politics, music, among many other subjects. Obviously Jesus was the primary command ground but we also held some commonality when it came to a lot of the philosophies of life. As Armond took his hiatus, it proved to be a chance for me check myself on treating him as a whole person, not just as one of my favorite artists. It became more about the process than the product for each of us in our different ways, as I feel is evident in Kairos. We often talked about not making moment music but rather something so coherent and timeless, that people were ministered to in a way that aligned with longevity.

As Armond slowly returned back to rappity mode, he would discuss what he felt the Lord wanted him to do with a more “quality over quantity” type of approach. No longer would he glory (no pun intended) in putting a project out every few months, recording some in a 2 or 3 day span. Instead, he would seek the Lord and be efficient and proficient with the time. Time and care definitely what went into Kairos, I wish I had screenshots of the constantly morphing “Kairos Advance” folder in Dropbox to prove it. The album kind of developed under my nose without me really understanding that I played a part. I would give input, stubbornly say “The Dreamer” was just okay, and offer input on track sequencing. But, after it was all said and done, what Armond said was just as important to the project as our musical discussions were the non-musical ones.

I look back at Kairos, a project I’ve listened to in its multiple iterations since late 2012, I can’t help but look forward- Genesis Revelation style. This is an album that is bigger than just the release date, the songs, or the annual Kairos weeks to come. Kairos is a call to take Biblical principles like getting understanding (Proverbs 4:7), being sober minded and vigilant (1 Peter 5:8), while “never living with (your) eyes closed” (Isaiah 42:7). Years from now, Armond’s kids, their kids (if he let’s his daughter get married before Christ returns), and yours will all be eating off of this album.

So, to sum up and set the sun on this summary I will simply say don’t snooze. If this is your first chance to really hear about Kairos, please make it a point to hear…wait, listen to it. If you have heard it, go back and listen to it again. This is not just about bars or regurgitating Bible verses indiscriminately. This is a living album; the result of pressure that pushes a man to truly chew on scripture, process it, and pour out by The Spirit’s prompting. It’s not too often that I’ve listened to an album that’s really added to my life and love for Jesus. Kairos does just that and I look forward to how the Lord will continue to use it.

 ThisIsKairos.com

Car shopping is exhausting…

…and I’m not talking new cars off the assembly line either. That can get exhausting in its own right as you spar with salesmen, finance managers, and the tactics they wield. The exhaustion I’m referring to is a result of looking at cars almost as old as the high school aspirations you put on the back-burner once you reach college. Cars that often look awesome on the outside but possibly hold miles and miles of problems within their chassis. Cars that are often can end up paying for themselves 30 times over as you squeeze the odometers life span to the upper 300 thousands. 

Dealerships, shady dealerships, old ladies, or Fast and Furious enthusiasts…oh the perils of finding a good car that was treated with the utmost of respect. It seems so much to ask to locate a 30+ mpg car with a clear title (without salvage stamped on it) and a life span beyond the end of the week of purchase. I just pray that the previous owner is honest and cared something for their car…back to the internet I go…

Progression: John Givez

I’m a fan of music. I enjoy supporting artists that are considered overlooked, newcomers, and even those that are established. My search for what’s new is constant yet has slowed some, allowing me to thoroughly enjoy the progression of several artists. One such artist is Oceanside, CA’s own, John Givez, a harmonically gifted harbinger of heavenly allegiance.

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"All Is Lost" - Movie Review
Something about a full length film that features a single actor always intrigues me. The first one that comes to my mind is “127 Hours” with James Franco, who did a pretty decent job carrying the plot solo. Another that was pretty decent was “Buried”, not to mention others like “Cast Away” (Hanks had help but most of the movie at least), and “Wrecked”. For a screenwriter, producer, director, etc. to trust 90-100% of their plot to one actor says a lot about the belief they have in what the finished product will be.
"All Is Lost" is the focus today and before I briefly speak on the Robert Redford film, let me get my **SPOILER ALERT** mention in.
As the press shots, movie posters, and trailers all clearly telegraph, this story takes place in the middle of the ocean. After an opening scene that allows us to hear Redford dictating his last words to loved ones in the stillness of the dark sea, we are taken back eight days.
Redford’s character (who was nameless) is found napping peacefully as his moderately luxurious boat floats in the sunny seas. He’s awakened by the sound of rushing water and looks up to discover that a large, metal shipping container gouged a hole in the side of his boat. There’s a bit of foreshadowing in this detail that we’ll discuss later.
Though the damage to the boat was pretty significant, once he ingeniously patched that up, I knew they were going to do all they could with the 106 minutes of runtime this movie has. The back and forth between storms, repairs, and near drownings peppers the movie but let’s get to life on the life boat.
Periodically throughout the film, our sailor has tried manually pinpointing and documenting his position at sea. This was obviously due to the loss of his electronic equipment in the original breach of the hull and partial flood. Redford is doing more of the same on the life raft, which seemed to be a vain pursuit. The fruitful results came when he filtered the sea water for drinking and also set up his fishing line. Well, the fishing line was successful until sharks stole his catch.
The sharks didn’t stick around long so we move on to the scenes that relate to the original shipping container incident. As we all should know, survival kits on life rafts come with flares. Flares usually catch the attention of passersby for miles around. But, inexplicably, our no name sailor was passed twice by ships carrying- yes, you guessed it- large shipping containers. He shot off multiple flares, to no avail, and with each successive shot, his hopes were depleted.
As I wind this down, the brink has arrived for both the sailor and his life raft. Having to abandon the flame-engulfed raft, the sailor dispatched himself into the sea, weakened and tired. Almost as if he was giving himself up to the large fish, a la Jonah, our character seems resigned to make the depths his grave.
At this point I’m stuck in between thinking “Wow, another movie that doesn’t just go for the standard rescue and happy ending!”, and “No, he worked too hard to die like this!”. But, as I was weighing these inverse reactions, a searchlight and a rescue boat slowly float into the frame. I guess you could say one rule to live by is not to die with your eyes closed because it’s the only reason he lived. If he had really believed that “all was lost”, then he may have shut his eyes and drowned within a few feet of rescue. 
Overall, I enjoyed this movie and definitely would recommend it to those who enjoy films that specialize in subtlety. Though there was a decent amount of action, there’s only so much you can do with one individual on screen. I’d suggest that if you do watch this, watch it wide awake because that same subtlety might lead you to fall asleep on a pretty good film. 

"All Is Lost" - Movie Review

Something about a full length film that features a single actor always intrigues me. The first one that comes to my mind is “127 Hours” with James Franco, who did a pretty decent job carrying the plot solo. Another that was pretty decent was “Buried”, not to mention others like “Cast Away” (Hanks had help but most of the movie at least), and “Wrecked”. For a screenwriter, producer, director, etc. to trust 90-100% of their plot to one actor says a lot about the belief they have in what the finished product will be.

"All Is Lost" is the focus today and before I briefly speak on the Robert Redford film, let me get my **SPOILER ALERT** mention in.

As the press shots, movie posters, and trailers all clearly telegraph, this story takes place in the middle of the ocean. After an opening scene that allows us to hear Redford dictating his last words to loved ones in the stillness of the dark sea, we are taken back eight days.

Redford’s character (who was nameless) is found napping peacefully as his moderately luxurious boat floats in the sunny seas. He’s awakened by the sound of rushing water and looks up to discover that a large, metal shipping container gouged a hole in the side of his boat. There’s a bit of foreshadowing in this detail that we’ll discuss later.

Though the damage to the boat was pretty significant, once he ingeniously patched that up, I knew they were going to do all they could with the 106 minutes of runtime this movie has. The back and forth between storms, repairs, and near drownings peppers the movie but let’s get to life on the life boat.

Periodically throughout the film, our sailor has tried manually pinpointing and documenting his position at sea. This was obviously due to the loss of his electronic equipment in the original breach of the hull and partial flood. Redford is doing more of the same on the life raft, which seemed to be a vain pursuit. The fruitful results came when he filtered the sea water for drinking and also set up his fishing line. Well, the fishing line was successful until sharks stole his catch.

The sharks didn’t stick around long so we move on to the scenes that relate to the original shipping container incident. As we all should know, survival kits on life rafts come with flares. Flares usually catch the attention of passersby for miles around. But, inexplicably, our no name sailor was passed twice by ships carrying- yes, you guessed it- large shipping containers. He shot off multiple flares, to no avail, and with each successive shot, his hopes were depleted.

As I wind this down, the brink has arrived for both the sailor and his life raft. Having to abandon the flame-engulfed raft, the sailor dispatched himself into the sea, weakened and tired. Almost as if he was giving himself up to the large fish, a la Jonah, our character seems resigned to make the depths his grave.

At this point I’m stuck in between thinking “Wow, another movie that doesn’t just go for the standard rescue and happy ending!”, and “No, he worked too hard to die like this!”. But, as I was weighing these inverse reactions, a searchlight and a rescue boat slowly float into the frame. I guess you could say one rule to live by is not to die with your eyes closed because it’s the only reason he lived. If he had really believed that “all was lost”, then he may have shut his eyes and drowned within a few feet of rescue. 

Overall, I enjoyed this movie and definitely would recommend it to those who enjoy films that specialize in subtlety. Though there was a decent amount of action, there’s only so much you can do with one individual on screen. I’d suggest that if you do watch this, watch it wide awake because that same subtlety might lead you to fall asleep on a pretty good film. 

Like I never left…

So, I’m back to square one of this thing we all know as blogging. I say back, because I once had a (tum)blog that was entitled “My Words….”, that consisted of nearly 90% photos, 5% cosigning of other people’s thoughts, and 5% my own actual words. The conundrum was found not only in the title of my former blog but also within my brain.

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