Nine Inch Nails: ADD VIOLENCE EP

Nine Inch Nails Official Store

(image source:

I am overwhelmed by the music being released this year already…so much I love and so much to look forward to.

One album soon to be released (July 21st, Friday) is Nine Inch Nails ADD VIOLENCE EP.

Two songs have been released already to the public LESS THAN and THIS ISN’T THE PLACE. The latter song was put up just yesterday on NIN’s official youtube channel. The song is melodic, slow and infectious. The video features a machine (audio equipment?) with knobs/buttons/lights labeled phrases such as ‘Amplify Chaos’ and ‘Add Violence’, as the song goes on the camera slowly pulls back revealing more of the machine.

The video is simple and after I viewed it for around the 50th time (not kidding) a few ideas came to me. I have long loved NIN and have worshiped creations by Trent Reznor. His lyrics and technique in song writing is extraordinary. Reznor often critiques society/politics and inner turmoil among other things in his song lyrics (think album YEAR ZERO).

A connection between Year Zero and ADD VIOLENCE is definitely there and NIN has given information about this. Info in article here.

My impression from the video might be a bit of a stretch but this is what I got, old machine (audio equipment of some sort, I’m guessing) appears aged and beaten up a bit but everything appears to ‘work’ as the machine turns on and comes to life. The machine could be a metaphor for a society that still runs on ‘old technology’ or ideals (phrases on buttons/knobs). A reference that comes to my mind is the machine in the underground facility in the early 2000’s TV show LOST. I’m not sure if this is audio equipment but if it is then my idea of a society that runs on ‘old technology or ideals’ could be the spoken word/thought process that is ‘old/archaic’ and still being used today. A bit of a stretch yes but that’s what I think of.

A few thoughts on the video for LESS THAN. Video begins with a woman staring at a TV screen with game controller in her hands (TV looks like an old chunky TV from the 90’s or early 2000’s) a neon bright animation is shown on the TV screen similar to a retro video game from the ’80’s . Lyrics are digitized and zoom up into the viewers face. This reminds me of virtual reality and societies trends today that revolve around the style and technology of past generations. It is as if the woman, in the video, is being consumed by this ‘new/old’ technology until her identity becomes nothing. The repeating line at the beginning of the chorus, “So what are you waiting for? You got what you asked for.” brings to my mind the idea that millennials (myself included) demand more of everything and for a generation that is overloaded with technology in their life, most of us get sucked into a ‘virtual reality’ of what ‘life is like’ (how people look, what people do, who they are etc. think social media/fashion trends and airbrushing photos for flawless skin). The end of the video has quick shots cut in of what I think is a hand reaching out of the TV…reference to VIDEODROME? Not sure but that’s what comes to mind.

(VIDEODROME (1983) photo source:


To sum it all up, I am excited for this new release from NIN and will be purchasing a digital copy and most likely a vinyl copy as well for my collection!!!

Please feel free to leave any comments below!

Thank you for reading my writing and I hope you return in the future!



p.s. I haven’t started watching the new season of Twin Peaks yet but damn NIN on the show is wicked, see video here.


iZombie: Why the Living Dead matter

iZombie Poster

(photo source:

iZombie is a series based on the DC comic of the same name originally released in 2010. The TV show began in 2015 and is still running. There are currently four seasons out but I will be covering just the first three. The main premise of the show is about an underground existence of zombies in Seattle, Washington. Their existence was the result of a energy drink (similar to toxic sludge) at a 4th of July boat party turned massacre.

The main character is Olivia, a med student who is newly engaged to Major (Major what? No, his name is Major) after being scratched by a zombie on the boat. Olivia’s (also called ‘Liv’, lol pun on Live) life dramatically changes as her skin and hair loses color and her craving for brains (dowsed in hot sauce) becomes more voracious. Liv becomes a medical examiner, coroner, for the police department allowing her access to fresh brains which she consumes in secret. Her partner, Ravi, also works as a coroner and quickly discovers her eating brains. Ravi’s reaction is the first of many markers in the show that makes it unique for the zombie genre. Ravi is intrigued by Liv’s condition and begins researching the cause for her zombification as well as a cure which is the overall goal for the entire series.

The next character that plays a major role in the series is Clive Babineaux, a detective at the police department. This is where it gets interesting. In this story, after a zombie eats a humans brains they have spontaneous visions belonging to that person. So, after Liv eats the fresh brains she finds in the morgue, suddenly she begins to have visions that relate to the victims death. She is compelled to help solve mysteries relating to homicides and soon teams up with Babineaux who is led to believe she is a psychic with incredible accuracy. The duo begins to solve mysteries, some of which are related to the mysterious energy drink that caused this secret zombie outbreak. Along with Ravi’s help, these three find themselves getting closer to the truth.

Other Key Characters:

Peyton, Liv’s best friend who works for the legal system, learns that Liv is a Zombie.

Major, Liv’s ex-fiance that struggles with a changed Liv and later learning of her Zombification.

Blaine, a ‘Spike-like’ character reminiscent of the Buffy the Vampire Slayer TV show, who is refreshing, evil (at times), and highly manipulative. An admirable adversary for Liv.

These characters are interwoven throughout the story and play out their own particular story lines that contribute to the overall story as a whole.

Key aspects that bring something new to the Zombie genre:

Eating brains gives you visions.

There are zombies already among us, living in secret.

There are zombie-led organizations that influence the lives of humans and zombies.

Zombies are presented as individuals, or together as a minority group under attack by humans. For the most part the zombies try to blend into society in fear that their discovery will lead to their death (‘death-death’ for the living dead: beheading etc).

Although some of these aspects may already be in other comics/movies/tv shows, I believe it is the approach that gives iZombie its uniqueness.

Key aspects about the show that stand out:

There are comic-book qualities to the show, for instance, the memorable intro that is presented as comic book panels, chapter breaks that are marked by a still of the last shot which morphs into comic-like art, and the precise structure of each episode that is form fitting to a comic in a series.

iZombie possesses qualities that can mark it as a meta-show, the show’s ability to be self-reflexive. For example when characters discuss zombie movies/shows within itself while hinting at a critique of iZombie (I noticed this more often in Season 3).

A killer soundtrack, often songs are sung and performed by the character Blaine throughout the series. They are mostly classic rock hits among others but the songs add a little more ‘art’ to the show. Often the songs are sung/played at the end of each episode to gain an emotional effect from the audience while also reflecting what just happened.


iZombie ranks #3 on imdb’s list of “Most Popular ‘Based on Graphic Novel’ Titles”.

This show has high ratings and a lot of admirers for its style and subject matter. I among them find this show to be very well put together and genuinely intriguing to watch. I look forward to watching Season 4, especially after the the end of Season 3 which left me aghast.

(Note: Contrary to professional movie/tv show reviews, I did not include the actors/actresses names after introducing the main characters. I have included the link to that possesses all this information. This is just me writing informally.)


Thank you so much for taking time out of your day to read my writing!

I hope that you will return in the future!

Any comments/suggestions are welcome!


Sample of My Art : Summer 2017

Here is some original artwork of mine that I did this summer. 

More on my Instagram.

Original artwork by Alina Happy Hansen July 2017

Original artwork by Alina Happy Hansen June 2017

Original artwork by Alina Happy Hansen June 2017

Original artwork by Alina Happy Hansen June 2017

Thank you for taking time out of your day to visit my blog and read my posts! 

I hope you will return in the future!


Currently Listening to…(July 2017)

Here’s a small sample of what I’ve been listening to:

Wolf Alice, The Horrors, Emily Haines and The Soft Skeletons, Chromatics, MUSE.



Wolf Alice -Yuk Foo


The Horrors-Machine


Emily Haines and The Soft Skeletons- Fatal Gift


Chromatics- Shadow


MUSE-Dig Down




Thank you for taking time out of your day to read my posts!

I hope you will return in the future!



My Summer Soundtrack Sample : Girlpool, Slutever, Death from Above 1979, Hasley, IAN SWEET, Dilly Dally, Colleen Green

Here are a few songs I’ve been listening to since Summer started for me (about a month ago).

Featuring artists/bands: Girlpool, Slutever, Death from Above 1979, Hasley, IAN SWEET, Dilly Dally, Colleen Green

information/video sources: and


Death from Above 1979 (song: White is Red)


Girlpool (song: It gets more blue)


IAN SWEET (song: Knife Knowing You)


Dilly Dally (song: purple rage)


Hasley (song: Now or Never)


Colleen Green (song: I want to grow up)



Hemlock Grove: Netflix Series and Novel


photo source:

I am a big fan of the Hemlock Grove series that was featured by Netflix from 2013-2015. After starting the first season I was instantly pulled into this strange horror/suspense series and shortly after I decided to read the novel (Hemlock Grove) that the Netflix series was based on by Brian McGreevy.

The novel possesses traits that remind me of Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein (format and stylistic approach). The narration jumps from character to character and includes text and email dialogue as well. I found McGreevy’s approach to trademark horror elements (monsters, murder and mystery) intriguing. It’s as if Hemlock Grove is an evolved version of a classic Victorian novel only with more gore and the inclusion of technology. Overall the novel is as good if not better than the Netflix series and left me wanting more.

What I love about the Netflix Series:

The characters are played by talented actors that give the characters amazing depth and complexity. As the series progresses these characters evolve and change (few for better, most for the worst) and this progression is wonderfully portrayed by the actors. Their ability to pull the inner struggles and desires from the core of these characters adds to the series as a whole.

Netflix’s approach to the subject matter and their knack for gory details satisfies my need for an ever evolving horror/suspense show that recognizes the chuckle that comes with vampires and werewolves but also adds more and makes it unique to its predecessors. These vampires (Umpirs) and Werewolves are different from the mainstream ones that have been over glorified and given too many (almost unbelievable) moralistic traits but they also contain key elements that horror fans recognize. For example the stereotype of gypsy werewolves and aristocratic origins of old vampires is paired with a werewolf gone ‘berserk’ (lol) a.k.a. Vargulf and an Umpir who uses money and science to better understand her species.

Throughout the series there is no restraints on the use of blood and bodies. The show is rated MA for Mature for a reason. I personally love the over the top use of blood and dead bodies. At certain times in the series (season one) the blood is used precisely to instill fear of the mysterious monster that is terrorizing Hemlock Grove. In season two blood is used in exaggeration (I think to reflect the gravity of the events taking place, as well as Roman’s ever increasing blood lust). The best example of the over to top use of blood is in this scene from season two episode five,

(source:  user: Nippy93)

Roman’s need for blood is seen in this ‘daydream’ of his as he fantasizes about drinking Miranda’s blood. The music and slow motion reflect his lust filled desire to indulge in his Umpir appetite. 

Alongside the use of blood and classic monsters, the story also includes unknown creatures that I have never read about (I also study folklore and mythology). This inclusion of other strange creatures is intriguing and demonstrates the stories ability to evolve and adapt to a modern audience.

The soundtrack is varied and includes many different songs spanning across multiple genres. I am curious to know if the soundtrack was chosen in collaboration with others in the production of the series or if the music is just a particular taste of one individual. I find the soundtrack refreshing and remarkably reflective of the show as a whole.

(Here is a spotify playlist that includes the songs used in the Hemlock Grove series)


With every show and story there comes a fandom. I usually indulge in looking up behind the scene photos or extra information on the actors and actresses of a series that I love but with Hemlock Grove I find myself admiring the characters from a safe distance. I’m not concerned about the questionable relationship between the two main characters, Roman and Peter, but love to dissect their attributes and actions while I read/watch Hemlock Grove.

Many lovers of Hemlock Grove gravitate to Roman Godfrey (played by Bill Skarsgard) because of his looks and of course his role as an Umpir. From what I’ve found there is little obsession over Peter (played by Landon Liboiron) which I think is a shame (or I just haven’t looked hard enough). Personally I’ve always gravitated to werewolves in horror novels and films versus vampires because of the honesty in which the werewolf operates. A werewolf cannot hide in a crowd when transformed, it is a brutal creature that kills versus a vampire that looks like anyone else when it is killing, save it’s fangs and distorted face. But really it all comes down to preference.

Overall, I would recommend Hemlock Grove to anyone that is open minded and loves Horror/Suspense shows. I can see Hemlock Grove as an acquired taste for some people and probably ridiculous to others. I personally love the Netflix Series (even with season three’s conclusion) and the novel by Brian McGreevy. I plan on re-reading the novel this summer and watching the series over again (I can’t count how many times I’ve seen the whole series, over and over again).

Please feel free to leave any responses in a comment below! I’d love to converse with any other fans of the series or expand on this small reflection in the future, given a specific topic.



If you are reading this Thank You for taking time out of your day to read my writing! I hope you return in the future!




Opioid/Heroin Addiction in Utah

I know this isn’t related to my categories Film, Music, Art for reflections but because I find this relevant to SLC, UT (where I live) and kind of mind-blowing, I’ve including this small reflection on Opioid/Heroin Addiction and Overdose related deaths in Utah.

I recently did a project for one of my classes in which I researched heroin/prescription opioid related deaths in Utah. This is after hearing multiple stories from different people in the last six months who had relatives and friends die from overdoses of these two drugs.

Contrary to the ‘clean’ and predominately MORMON ‘family’ state that Utah is perceived to be. We have a few issues that any big city can relate to. One of them is the problem of Perscription Opioids and Heroin Addiction which leads to some of the highest rates of drug related deaths (overdose) in the Nation.

For the past ten years (a sky rocket increase in deaths since 2007) Utah has ranked (often fluctuating up and down) as one of the top nine states for the highest drug overdose related deaths, specifically Opioids/Heroin.

In my research I found that often males in their twenties and females in their fifties had the highest rates of overdose. I also found that because of changes in the laws regarding prescription opioids which restricted certain opioids for a time there was an increase in Heroin overdose related deaths. This is an issue that I have barely heard the news, radio or gov. in Utah talk about, the only recent event to mark the importance of this issue was a summit meeting in 2016 in which issues such as the price for pain killers and opioids were exponentially more expensive than Heroin and affected the stats of overdose deaths. But even with the summit I’ve never heard people talk about this issue-I get the feeling that this issue is being ‘swept under the rug’ and silently dealt with by rehab centers and the gov. in Utah so as to not tarnish Utah’s image of being safe, clean, pro-family and a Mormon stronghold. (BUT I COULD BE WRONG!)

There is a discussion on the fact that about 60% of residents in Utah are members of The Church of Latter-Day Saints (MORMONS) and that because this issue of drug related deaths, specifically pain killers (Opioids) is on such a rise that Mormon residents may contribute to a large amount of the numbers of abusers and overdose related deaths (

This is a discussion I stumbled on quite a few times in my research. Most articles stated that since it is against the belief practices of Mormons to ‘poison’ their bodies with liquor, cigarettes and even caffeine that if they are prescribed pain medication by doctors, Opioids must be OK, and that they may think that these pain medications will have no adverse affects on their body. It is extremely easy to become addicted to Opioids/Pain Meds and since an addiction leads to using up prescriptions and getting cut off, the next step is to find an equivalent drug which is HEROIN. It is dirt cheap on the streets and has the same affect but in the long run just like Opioids, addiction leads to death (most opioid deaths are accidental).

I am skeptical of the idea that most Opioid abusers are Mormon since I’ve known plenty of Mormons that refuse to even use Aspirin (because it is against their belief system). But the fact that a good amount of  Utah’s residents are Mormon and that these drug related deaths are on an increase still does suggest there could be a correlation between the two.

There is also data to support that drug overdose related deaths in Utah, outnumbers deaths by car accidents and firearms which are some of the top causes of death in Utah next to accidents in the home (2014 pdf data).

Reflecting on my research, I find this issue to be extremely relevant and find it amazing I don’t see billboards and posters up all over the city addressing this issue (I honestly only recall seeing two billboards about this problem, one on State Street and another on 21st South in the past two years). After all that I’ve read and living in Utah for almost my entire life, I will say I am not surprised that this is an issue.





Fight Club: Reflection #1

Hello Readers!

I have debated on doing a reflection on Fight Club (1999) for a while now. I know I could analyze and critique hundreds of points in this film but have decided to do a small reflection on Tyler Durden’s Philosophy of Life for today. I found this short snippet labeled with this title (Philosophy of Life) on Youtube and thought it is the perfect slice from the movie to include with this post.

Youtube vid:


I want to address a handful of items that have stood out to me from watching Fight Club and reading the novel (published in 1996) by Chuck Palahniuk multiple of times over the years.


Tyler’s Critique on Consumerism in America. In the youtube vid, Tyler comments on the evolution of man and how in modern society they have become consumers,

“We’re consumers. We are by-products of a lifestyle obsession. Murder, crime, poverty, these things don’t concern me. What concerns me are celebrity magazines, television with 500 channels, some guy’s name on my underwear. Rogaine, Viagra, Olestra.” (

Tyler also advocates, letting everything go and not fulfilling society’s standards for men. Ultimately he wants revolution,

” I see in fight club the strongest and smartest men who have ever lived an entire generation pumping gas and waiting tables; or they’re slaves with white collars. Advertisements have them chasing cars and clothes, working jobs they hate so they can buy shit they don’t need. We are the middle children of history, with no purpose or place. We have no great war, or great depression. The great war is a spiritual war. The great depression is our lives. We were raised by television to believe that we’d be millionaires and movie gods and rock stars — but we won’t. And we’re learning that fact. And we’re very, very pissed-off.” (

The social critique found throughout Fight Club is relevant especially now. We are walking advertisements, branding ourselves through our purchases of clothes, cars, and food. And the products that we buy which are made for pennies, costs us $$$$ just to own. For the middle and lower class, often working two or three jobs is necessary to survive but with the bombardment of messages that tell us ‘How to be Happy’ and How to have a ‘meaningful’ and ‘fulfilled’ life, we are left scrambling to keep up with others, buying products so that we can be perceived as ‘complete’ and ‘happy’.

“You’re not your job, you’re not how much money you have in bank, you’re not the car you drive, you’re not the contents of your wallet, you’re not your fucking khakis, you’re all-signing all-dancing crap of the world.” (

But what Tyler reveals (and what resounds with audiences even now) is that things don’t make people happy, working shit jobs don’t make people happy, doing what we love to do (what we’ve always wanted to do) makes us happy. This is evident in Tyler’s threat to the convenience store clerk (gun to the back to his head) “What did you want to be?!” (Movie: Fight Club 1999)

Tyler pushes men and the audience to reflect on their lives. We are what society makes us and for most of us we accept this regardless of how miserable it makes us.

Now this is only one aspect of Tyler’s seemingly evolving philosophy which eventually leads to acts of Terrorism that (pre-9/11) are intriguing acts on their own. Tyler wants to dismantle the corrupted society of modern man and free the oppressed.

In these messages, the novel and film have become a legend and cultural icons for the working class and men. Tyler Durden as a character has become a mythical figure that inspires revolution and freedom of thought in the oppressed modern society. He asks us to question our lives, what we value and our roles in society. He asks us to FIGHT BACK.

Tyler has become more than a literary presence but an ideology that has spread across the world inspiring men and women to act, and create their own ‘Fight Clubs’ (real or in other forms). This creation, Fight Club, is a remarkable achievement for Chuck Palahniuk and still inspires readers (and watchers) today.


There is also the discussion that Fight Club (film and novel) is for specifically male audiences. As a woman, I agree only partially with this discussion since almost everything I love is labeled ‘masculine’ by culture that I love. I can see the critique on the male role in society, I see comments on ‘hyper masculinity’ and what it means to ‘be a man’. I can see ties to the struggle of self under the pressure of society (in regards to men) and I can see that the only female role: Marla Singer represents the ‘hitting bottom’ female counterpart to Tyler (give her credit, she ‘hit-bottom’ way before Tyler and lives in it).

As a woman appreciating the film and text of Fight Club, I take away the social critique and acknowledgement of male roles in society, the grittiness (and violence, love that too!) and deep resonance with the aching modern soul that is so perfectly articulated in this legendary story. I would never advocate to change Fight Club for female viewers but I would argue against people that say Fight Club is ONLY for men.

This is only a small reflection, and I labeled it appropriately ‘PART #1’ for a reason. I want to expand more on Fight Club and plan to add more to my discussion sometime this weekend.


other sources:


If you are reading this, Thank You for taking time out of your day to read my writing and I hope you return in the future!




Announcement: Films, Music, Art Topics

Hello Readers!

I plan on posting a few things this week, here is what to expect,

Poetry: Post that includes 1-3 poems that I am currently working on.

Short Story: Post that includes a short story that I am currently working on.


Films, Music, Art: Here are the topics I am considering writing on, would love your input or vote in the comments below as well as suggestions!


Movies: Cabin in the Woods (2012)

Evil Dead (1981) or (2013)

Fight Club (1999)

The Twilight Zone (1959-1964) ANY EPISODE

American Psycho (2000)

American Mary (2012)


Music:    Iggy Pop (selected album)

Black Sabbath (selected album)

MARILYN MANSON (selected album)* could expand heavily on


Art: Egon Schiele

Robert Mapplethorpe

Frida Kahlo


Thank you for any suggestions! I hope you return in the future!


T2: Response and Reflection


T2 Trainspotting Poster


The shots, cuts and camera angles used in T2 reflect the style and tone of Trainspotting (1996). Paired with a gritty soundtrack that ranges from classics-remixed or toned down- from Trainspotting and contemporary music, the film exudes in its technique the theme of T2; nostalgia and coming to terms with your past.

Returning to Edinburgh, Renton decides to make amends and pay back his friends whom he betrayed twenty years ago (except Begbie, who he avoids at all costs). What he finds is Sick Boy and Spud doing exactly what they were doing when he left, and Begbie still in prison (soon to break free).

T2 follows Renton and the crew ‘getting together’ one last time in an epic junkie battle of revenge and heart wrenching flashbacks of adolescent beginnings. Emphasizing on nostalgia for a past that has died and gone to junkie heaven, T2 artistically echoes key moments that made Trainspotting  unforgettable; ‘Choose Life’ speeches, Renton colliding with vehicles, Begbie and his love for violence, Spud as the loved and innocent junkie of the crew and Sick Boy (Simon) still working as a con artist and thief. Although it echoes similar actions in Trainspotting, it does not feel like T2 is copying these actions in an attempt to ride the waves of what made it popular in the first place. The repeated or similar actions feel like they stand on their own, echoing maybe the message that sometimes you are always doomed to repeat yourself.

What is added to the mix is the role of Veronica, a young twenty something whose expertise in sex and her partnership (girlfriend?) with Sick Boy puts her at the center of an old man dog fight over events that probably happened when she was just a toddler. Veronica in the book Porno (by Irvine Welsh, and sequel to Trainspotting) has more parts and prevalence as a sex worker who later works for Sick Boy in his venture of creating Pornographic films above his bar. These parts are changed and toned down in the movie T2 and Veronica is portrayed as a possibly more ‘clean’ woman to audiences but in the end she does exactly what she does in Porno; taking the torch from the generation before her of “First there is opportunity, then there is Betrayal.”( I think by toning down Veronica in T2 Danny Boyle may have taken into consideration just how much grit and slime audiences can take (creating an R-Rated film versus a neon flashing NC-17).

Although I was curious from the instant I heard about T2 and after reading the book Porno just how much of book would be in T2, I am satisfied with this cookie cutter version which is easier to swallow for most, although I definitely craved more of the book in the end.

Overall, T2 holds true to Trainspotting as an art device used for social critique and exposure of the disgusting but often real underbelly of modern life (a predominant trait of Irvine Welsh’s works). With added references and use of today’s technology and comments on how ‘conning’ can’t be done like how it used to be, T2 shows the evolution of  addiction, lies, and thievery in our present day in a heart-wrenching story of opportunity and betrayal among best friends.


I could write more on T2 and go into depth on certain key scenes/aspects that stood out to me but I will have to think about this. I do plan on seeing T2 again and in the theatre so I can enjoy the big screen experience and if after watching it for a second time I do decide to do another reflection I will post one, probably longer (long long read) and in a couple of weeks.


(sources:, )


If you are reading this Thank You for taking time out of your day to read my writing. I hope you return in the future!