Thursday, August 1, 2013

Vodka: Salute American Vodka

SALUTE American Vodka (Better Brands Beverage Co) - 80 proof (40% ABV)

Salute is a strictly American-made vodka, using only "American-made corn and wheat grains from the heartland". And if that doesn't sell you, how about the fact that $1.00 from every bottle sold is donated to US Veterans' charities, helping our servicemen and women re-adjust to civilian life. More details can be found at their website:

All that aside, how does Salute stack up as a premium vodka? Well, at under $20 a bottle, it's got value on it's side. As with most vodkas, it pours clean and clear. The aroma is definitely very much in the expected realm of grain alcohol, which is pretty standard for a vodka. In a warm tasting, I get hints of mint and licorice, which is definitely a step above many similar drinks I've tasted. 

As an ingredient in the common screwdriver (orange juice + vodka), Salute fared very well, added a subtle alcohol presence, and was easy to enjoy and finish.

I also sampled the vodka straight from the freezer, and as a shot, it went down much more smooth. In fact, I'd recommend chilling this well before enjoying. 

So, my final verdict is that Salute American Vodka is a solid, all-American spirit that competes well with international brands that cost much more. I say give it a try when you're in the league for some premium vodka.

Thanx to Aaron at Ro-Bro for the chance to try this fine vodka!

"The G-String Horror" DVD (director: Charles Webb)

Convoluted and confused z-horror

Hmm. A curiousity, this one. On one hand, it's a poorly-scripted and amateurish ultra-low budget trash film. On another hand, it's tied into a real-life ghost story/haunting. The director Webb (himself a veteran of adult film production dating back to the early 70s) weaves a tenuous tale around the reportedly haunted and historic Market Street Cinema in San Francisco. He combines both staged footage (rather uninteresting and badly scripted/acted by actual strippers at this now-closed club) with real-life ghost-hunting footage and interviews with the famous strip club's employees. It ends up a confusing mess posing as a surreal experience.

The attempt to join these worlds just doesn't work. It all ends up being quite unbelievable and false in feeling. The most interesting part of this failed experiment is the retrospective look at filming alongside an episode of "Ghost Adventures", as the popular supernatural/ghost-hunting crew filmed a night at this same club, with the employees/"actresses" featured. 

But don't expect Zak Bagans and crew to make any cameos, as it seems even they wanted some distance from this convoluted and ham-fisted project.

Blaze Of Perdition - "Towards The Blaze Of Perdition" CD

Strong Polish occult black metal

This is a reissue/remastering of the Polish black metal act's first full-length album from 2010, and it's a solid offering of evil, mid-tempo metal in the vein of Watain. 

"Misterium Kliffoth" is solid but pretty typical black metal -- highly aggressive and intense, yet with an underlying air of sorrow. The guitar leads and rhythms are strong, to say the least, and the vocals, though they don't deviate much, are raw and effective in the context of the music. "The Scarlet Woman" is a thunderous assault, and includes some Aleister Crowley recordings as part of it's intro, so score a few points there.The rest of the album is just as good, though.

Production is superb, leaving plenty of room for all instruments, with deep lows and crisp highs. "Towards The Blaze Of Perdition" is a well-done album (especially for a debut), and if occult black metal ignites your fires, this is easily recommended.