Saturday, August 26, 2006

Toby Rand is the Center of the Universe

UPDATE: Some of the links below give an error message. Go to this index to see anything on Rockstar Supernova without having to endure the lead-ins and ads from the official site. END UPDATE

Last time I posted, I was getting pretty bored and annoyed with Rockstar. But now, my enthusiasm has been completely renewed. The reason? Toby Rand.

Yes, Toby.

Let's just pause and reflect upon Toby.

This past week, I loved his performance on Layla (dig that song anyway), and then the next night, I again loved both him with Supernova and then doing his elimination song, Plush.

You know what else? I totally think he's going to win now. I thought he looked and sounded perfect with Supernova. I loved his voice and style on the song they gave him. At the end when they all came down the catwalk with Brooke Burke and stood there for a few seconds, it was like, snap a picture, ladies and gentlemen, this is Supernova. It was a total Jerry Maguire moment where you could just hear the SN guys say, "Toby, you complete us." If you want to see Toby's performance with Supernova, click here.

My thoughts on Supernova? It's Motley Crue II. They'll be fun, but it's not art or anything. I thought the second song they debuted with Toby was a lot catchier than the one they did the week before with Dilana which I really hated. If you would like to compare the two performances, here's Dilana's, complete with choreography and dancing girls. You may not be able to see the cheese, but I think you can smell it.

Okay, speaking of Dilana, I guess it's time to go there. I started watching the show week #2, and I've gone back through YouTube and the archives to catch the early performances I've missed. If you peruse the archives, you can see all the reality episodes and other behind-the-scenes tape including songwriting clinics, etc. It's good fun if you're a fan who has high-speed internet connection. In the beginning, I was totally on the Dilana bandwagon, particularly week 3 when she performed Zombie.

Around week 6, however, I started getting bored. I really disliked the song she wrote at the individual songwriting clinic that week, and the stench of Velvetta started to set in. I think Magni and Ryan hit the nail on the head during the elimination show this week when they told her she hadn't grown at all since the first week. I know the ennui had hit me hard before this past week, the week of big drama. I already wrote extensively last week about how much I disliked her performance with Supernova. That was like the nail in the Dilana coffin for me.

So this week's (week 8) reality episode features Dilana dissing every rocker, one by one, during a media clinic. When elimination night aired, they showed some highlights from that reality episode plus additional footage from "back at the mansion" where she's telling Ryan that he'd be nowhere without the house band. Basically, she's being portrayed as the biggest bitch to walk the planet, and it's big, big drama for all. My brother was sending me text messages saying, "I want to murder the bitch!" and everyone's got their hate on.

My personal opinion is that this is reality television at it's finest. Now that they are down to six remaining singers and the show ends in three weeks, the girl who has flown by for two months without a single tiny criticism from the judges suddenly falls from grace. In fact, she falls hard; plummets, even. To me, the whole scenario is a little suspicious. I think the truth lies somewhere in the middle. I think Mark Burnett Productions definitely created drama, likely through editing (for example, perhaps every single rocker commented on every other one, but we only saw hers?) and at the same time, I also don't think Dilana was an innocent victim at all. How this will ultimately play out for her, I do not know. Just fodder for thought. It's good television for sure, but honestly, I hate being manipulated like this.

Moving on, we haven't enjoyed a photo of Toby in a couple paragraphs, and frankly, I need to feed the beast.

A few words about Storm. I think she's awesome. I kind of don't want her to get the Supernova gig because that's not what she's all about, and I'd like to see her take the fantastic exposure she's received from being on Rockstar and continue to pursue her original music and go on to superstardom. I've been reading the message boards at her website where I've found links to radio interviews with Storm, etc., and I've come away a huge fan. Check her original music here, Ladylike in particular. I love, love, love this.

Last night, the six remaining rockers played a free outdoor show at Universal City Walk (I think this was a Richard Blade-hosted event, Angelenos will know who I'm talking about). I didn't go, but video is showing up on YouTube as I type this, and here are a couple links below. If you click on the links below, they will lead you to other links from performances last night including a pretty rocking rendition of Sweet Child of Mine that features all six remaining rockers. Though it's not looking good, there's a possibility I could go to the taping of next week's performance show tomorrow (they tape those on Sunday afternoons, BTW) which would really work out great because I'm going to the Foo Fighters on Tuesday night this week. This week is "viewers' choice" week.

Here's Toby at Universal City Walk singing White Wedding.

Toby and Magni at City Walk singing Where the Streets Have No Name.

Finally, here are Toby and Magni performing U2's With or Without You.


At Saturday, August 26, 2006 4:44:00 PM, Blogger Diane said...

In 1983 or 1984 my roommate and I waited for hours in line at the Warehouse in WeHo to meet Billy Idol and Steve Stevens, and Richard Blade showed up - my god, he was about 80 then, is he still ambulatory? BTW when we finally got in the store, I was so over come by Billy's beauty (and he was a beauty) then when he shook my hand and said "how ya doing?" I said something like blubbabudaa . . .

At Saturday, August 26, 2006 10:34:00 PM, Blogger Ryan said...

LA, I have to totally agree with your thoughts about Toby. He and Lukas have been my favorites from the beginning. You can never have enough pics of Toby in your posts.

At Sunday, August 27, 2006 2:26:00 PM, Blogger prettykitty said...

la, i didn't think much of toby until i saw him perform with supernova. when he covers other people's stuff, he's not great, but it's hard living up to the original. but he created his own sound with them. i think you're right. he's totally gonna win. also, my love affair with dilana is over. when she took that one girl under her wing and gave constructive criticism, i thought she was so cool. but i can see her ego is out of control. she may do well on her own, but she blew winning the contest for me.


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