Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Put the blender on hi!

Just a quick post here...

Check out Alpha Saloon...a mix of all things...listen to them channel the Pixies:

Alpha Saloon - To Avoid the Apparently Stupid

And how about some 80's style German influenced Punk/New Wave?

Alpha Saloon - Uber German

And yeah, they're from they can sport a name like that.

And then they go all crazy on us:

Alpha Saloon - Modern Times Modern People Modern Talking

and that sound...who does this remind you of?

Alpha Saloon - Pretty Dancing Person

Have fun with it, why don't yah.

I'm the King of the Universe!

Music has always played an important part in my life...I have a lot of personal historical events that are marked by songs and albums. There are two that happened around the same time...

It was my first trip to town with my friends and no parents. Record Factory on the Pacific Garden Mall in downtown Santa Cruz...the astronaut on the side of the building...laying down my OWN money to buy the Kink's "One For The Road."

The second is taking Electric Light Orchestra's "Discovery" out of the sleeve and breaking it in half.

I was young and very impressionable at the time...not sure of a lot things in life. I had been put into a private christian school in junior high and had a class that talked about backward masking on albums and how it was meant to influence us and turn us into satanists. They handed out a list of albums so afflicted and there on the list was my precious ELO album. I tried to play it backwards at home and couldn't discern any noticeable english in there...but what if it was true?

I could take no chances. I pulled the album out and bent it...shattering it into about 6 pieces. I kept the sleeve and the album for years...I remember it being in my collection for a looong time. I always felt so dissapointed in my self for falling for this.

So where is this all leading? To the recent re-releases of three of ELO's early albums, that's where.

I received On The Third Day (1973), Face The Music (1975) and A New World Record (1976) all as comps and I must say the re-releases are great. Fully remastered and with bonus tracks, there's not much to complain about. I wasn't as familiar with these discs, having not listened to them in awhile, but the magic that is ELO is as strong as ever. You can find all the info on the re-releases over at this site. Well worth your time.

The discs are filled with hits..."Showdown," 'Ma-Ma-Ma Bell," "Evil Woman," "Strange Magic," and the list goes on. ELO was a hit making machine, and the best part is they did it on their own terms. One of the interesting things about listening to these albums as a whole is discovering how much of an influence they've had on the current sound...the lush orchestration of ELO is so visible in bands like the Polyphonic Spree...and yes, some may say this is all a reflection of the Beatles, but ELO did something different with it. Made it a little bigger and a little more produced.

Check them out if you're even slightly interested. Well worth every penny.

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

I need a shave

Taking a bit of a departure...Wee Hairy Beasties!

Wee Hairy Beasties - Wee Hairy Beasties!

Jon Langford (Mekons, Old 97's, etc.), Sally Timms (Mekons), Kelly Hogan (plays with Will Oldham and Waco Brothers) and Devil in a Woodpile formed this band to entertain kids young and old alike. It's a fun little tune, think you'll enjoy it.

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

shipwrecked? hardly...

Just got this one in my inbox...Gary Lucas, best known for his Captain Beefheart and Jeff Buckley connections, has an album coming out...and well, what made me pay attention was his band's line-up...both Jerry Harrison and Ernie Brooks are on it. Is this the closest they've been since their Jonathan Richman and the Modern Lovers days? I don't know...but first listen makes a good impression. Enjoy!

Gary Lucas / Gods and Monsters - Fata Morgana

Other things to note, on the album, "Coming Clean," expect to hear Billy Ficca from Television and Jonathan Kane from the Swans. Oh yeah, and David Johansen, Richard Barone and Elli Medeiros make guest appearances.

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Hot Spit Dancers!

Anybody have any of their stuff? Apparently, there was one demo tape released back in 1983-84. Vince Voodoo was the lead singer...I saw them back around '84 at the Crest Theater in of the opening acts for the Descendents...if my memory serves me correctly.

And my first bloody nose at a concert.

Love to track that tape down...

sweetness and light

It's not completely perfect, but it's hard not enjoy the sweetness of Lavender Diamond...and yeah, I don't think there name is all that keen myself, but I do like their sound..especially the first song:

Lavender Diamond - Rise in the Springtime

Lavender Diamond - You Broke My Heart

So what's not perfect? There's a bit too much repetition...both songs build nicely, then get stuck for a bit, making me feal like they could be about a minute shorter each. It's more of a vocal thing, I want the music to breathe a bit more than they're letting it. They've been touring with the Decemberists, apparently...

Head over to their site, there's also a solo track by Becky Stark, who I'm assuming is the singer for the band...

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