Lindsay Buckingham-Holiday Road
Here's another gem from this cinematic trilogy: Power Station's Some Like It Hot. In case you didnt know...Power Station is a super group with Robert Palmer, dudes from Duran Duran, and the drummer from Chic. It blows my mind that I didn't know about this until today. Here's Rusty getting down to their jam wearing one of the most beautiful white leather jackets I've ever seen.
Power Station-Some Like It Hot
Justin Townes Earle the son of music great Steve Earle was probably destined for the stage ever since he was born. He started out playing in a two different bands The Distillers, a bluegrass band and The Swindlers, he was only a teenager at the time. Justin began using drugs at the tender age of 12 years old. When he was still in his early twenties, after 5 overdoses and being fired for from his fathers band The Dukes for his erratic performances he got clean. After his new found sobriety he became focused on music again and since 2007 he has released 3 albums. He is currently signed to the Bloodshot Records (the quality of this label will be discussed at a later date) and still making music. The newest track "Do I Ever Cross Your Mind" is a duet with the ever so beautiful Dawn Landes.
Justin Townes Earle - Do I Ever Cross Your Mind
Bonus Track - Justin's Cover of The Replacements Can't Hardly Wait
These Scots are turning up their guitars and doing some screaming and it rocks with angst. Label mates with Frightened Rabbit who are a band that is more somber and melancholy We Were Promised Jetpacks are yelling with all they got and filling out their sound with raw emotion. The first album was released last year and they have done some touring with Frightened Rabbit. When you are at a point where you are afraid you cannot feel, put these boys on and sing along loudly. The Scottish accents add flavor and I am sure if you try you may be able to imitate them well. They will be at Rock and Roll Hotel in DC on 2/13 and at the Knitting Factory in Brooklyn on 2/15. Come back for a review of the DC Show.
For once (supposedly) an apparently brilliant album was not released by a major label for some fault other then their executives...it wasn't a Yankee Hotel Foxtrot situation...it was worse. Some claim that it was Brian Wilson's escalating drug use and mental deterioration that caused the ultimate collapse of this highly anticipated masterpiece, and rumors swirled that he had been caught trying to burn the master tapes of the album, however, it has been stated by many studio musicians involved in the recoding that Wilson conducted himself in an extremely professional manner while recording. Why would anyone lie about that when it might cost them future jobs?
The most common speculation for the lack of an offical release of the SMiLE project is that it was shelved due to frictions within the band, specifically between Mike Love and Brian Wilson. SMiLE is far removed from the "Beach Boys" sound (and Brian was one of the youngest Beach Boys members) so it ended up getting shut down by the rest of the group. Its a shame, really...this is one of the strangest, strongest and most creative albums that came out the Beach Boys camp, up until that time, the boys usually stuck to singing about (as Dan Meth points out) girls, cars , and surf); however this album was much more psychedelic and varied in its subject matter.
SMiLE would have given the recently released Sgt. Peppers album a run for it's money back in the summer of 1967...had it been released, so its a shame that it was never given the chance. So be it though, instead, this has become the holy grail of bootlegs, and is widely regarded to be the most important album to have never been released by a rock band in the 20th century. Besides the fact that it's the direct follow up to Pet Sounds, the album was supposed to house the song "Good Vibrations" one of the best charting Beach Boys songs (no.1 in Britain and America).
Many songs intended for the SMiLE album (including "Good Vibrations", "Heroes and Villains" and "Surf's Up") were later re-recorded and released on subsequent Beach Boys album such as Smiley Smile, Wild Honey, and Surf's Up, many of them did not come out the same way (like all of them), and one of those such gems is the SMiLE version of "Wind Chimes" which lost some of the pleasant haziness of its original incarnation. Too be honest, and I dont think I'm alone here...it seems as if Brian Wilson never wrote another song again after SMiLE.
Beach Boys-Wind Chimes
Yes-Long Distance Runaround
You may notice that this song seems to cut off suddenly, that's because I upped the album version which runs into the following track. It truly wasn't until "Owner of a Lonely Heart" that Yes would make an actual proper pop song...
Yes-The Fish (Schindleria Praematurus)
Bonus: Here is Yes performing a song called Siberian Khatru on a rotating stage, you heard me right...a rotating stage with Jon Anderson in the middle wearing what looks to be a Luke Skywalker costume and Rick Wakeman surrounded by 23 keyboards on the outskirts of the circle (you'd think they'd put the guy you wrote a mini symphony about Henry the 8th in the center spot). Check it out, these dudes weren't slackers when it came to putting on a show. They're performing on a rotating stage, they're dead serious.
Last week the world was dealt a terrible blow. An earthquake ripped apart Haiti, the death toll now reaching over 200,000. The worst earthquake in hundreds of years and the most deadly natural disaster in my memory. It's a terrible thing, and if you can, please text "Haiti" to 90999 and donate $10 to the American Red Cross. They need your help. Whatever you do, don't by a Wyclef Jean album.
Wyclef Jean may be the only famous musician you know of from Haiti, but he sucks and this tragedy isn't going to change that. When I first saw him asking for donations on TV, I was glad to see he was lending his time and celebrity to this worthy cause. But then something else happened. I started hearing him singing in the background of one, then two, then I don't know how many commercials (it's happened 2 times since I started writing this) and I was reminded anew of how annoying that motherfucker is, and how much his music sucks, even when he's covering Bob Marley's simplest songs.
Something terrible happened, let's prevent another tragedy. He's creeping back into our collective consciousness and I don't want him there. I don't want him to be for Haiti what Bruce Springsteen was for 9/11. Let's stop this as it's starting! I may be the only person to notice this crime of culture as it's happening, but my biggest fear is that this goes unnoticed, and 15 years from now he gets inducted into the rock and roll hall of fame and my grand-kids think he wrote "No Woman No Cry." Let's not let him benefit from this terrible event by becoming unwilling fans. Firenze warned me that it was too soon to write this kind of piece related to such a terrible tragedy, but fuck it, that's why we used pseudonyms. And trust me, I have a lot worse things to say, but I'm holding back.
Throughout this terrible tragedy, give all you can. Pray for the Haitian people. And remind your friends and coworkers how much they hate Wyclef Jean.
Freelance Whales played the Backstage of the Black Cat last night. This group is not from Brooklyn they are from Queens. They spent some time busking in the subways of NYC. The band consists of five people and some of them are instrument hoppers passing off different duties to each other for different songs during their performance. There is drums, synth, bass, drums, guitar, xylophone, and banjo all played at some point during the set. They have only released one album so they did not play for long. Freelance Whales will whisk you off with sweeping melodies and vocals sung by all of them. This is the sort of band that will come across much better live then they ever will on an album. They received much attention at CMJ Festival this year and has already played sold out show at the Mercury Lounge in NYC. Freelance Whales - 1st floor generator
Freelance Whales - 2nd floor generator
K, so back to reality...what dude basically did was mash up a bunch of post Beatles solo joints and strung them together into songs, which he then compiled into a mixtape. Clearly I need to brush up on my Lennon and McCartney cuz, I couldn't place a lot of the samples here. However, this one clearly contains significant portions of the Wings classic: "Band On The Run".
"The Beatles"-Four Guys
Visit the site here, and download the whole tape...its worth a listen for the creativity and insanity that went into it.
Bonus: While I'm at, and had previously mentioned Band on the Run, here's a personal favorite off that album.
Paul McCartney & Wings-Mrs Vanderbuilt
Mark Oliver Everett of the Eels has written a new album that is similar to that of Electro Shock Blues in that it is personal. The man is clearly distraught over a woman who has gotten away from him. The first video he made was with Top Chef Star Padma Laksmi and he has quite the beard and his dog looks good in his little doggie tuxedo. Oz over at hearya.com wants to tell him to buck up and write something uplifting. In the review Oz eloquently puts that he sees Everett as "an aging man losing love in a world where the integrity of humanity is decaying before his eyes." Everett is familiar with the pain involved in unexplainable loss as he lost his sister to suicide in 1996 and his mother to lung cancer in 1998 and these experiences is where many songs off of Electro Shock Blues stemmed from. The second song I have posted off the new album "Little Bird" has a melody that caught my ear and I cannot stop listening to it.
In Scotland there were six artists that took what was a never lived in village created for 500 oil workers which was abandoned for 33 years and turned it into a work of art. This forgotten structure gave "Agents of Change" a chance to explore their creativity through their own graffiti art. In three days these artists gave this eerie place a set of characters. Watch and learn more.
I think the best part about this album is the fact that J.P. Stevens heard it, and ended up loving the album so much that they all became friends. Here is a candid shot of him posing with 2 Live Crew while the whole gang frolicked on the beach together in Miami chasing bitches (see below).
I mean in my opinion this album is better categorized as a novelty record than as a masterpiece of rap music, Ready to Die, it's not. Their track "Me so Horny" is a goddamn treasure though, but that's all you really need. In short the album is more of a landmark and raised the bar on nastiness which has now been broken many times over by the likes of Snoop Doggy Dogg and Will Smith
2 Live Crew-Me So Horny
Bonus: this mustve come out before stricter intellectual property laws regarding music samples were enforced (The Beastie Boys' classic Paul Boutique also benefited from lax laws against sampling, famously employing literally hundreds of unlicensed samples) "Fuck Shop" throws a nice Van Halen riff on the beat.
2 Live Crew-Fuck Shop
I have just found out about the tragic death of Jay Reatard, a.k.a. Jimmy Lee Lindsey Jr. According to a release by his label, Matador Records, Jay died in his sleep last night. He was only 29 years old. I had the special pleasure of seeing two of his frenetic performances last year and consider myself a huge fan. Will follow up in the coming days with a look into his short but prolific life.
RIP Jay. This guy was a hell of a performer.
Faking It (a personal favorite):
For now, check out Grizzly's post on Jay from Summer 2009.
Julian Casablancas has arrived back on the scene after the The Strokes broke up. He played the 9:30 club last night in DC and it was a short set of Casablancas new material which apparently there is not that much of. He came out with a very calm, cool and collective demeanor. NME has a good interview with him in which he explains why he wanted to do a solo record etc etc. HERE IS THE LINK.
Casablancas delivered his new work with a comfortable relaxed swagger and this tour will be a breeze for him. The new sound has a lot of electronic sounds going on and drums that sound very clear and distinct although some of The Strokes aesthetic still exists. It was clean and had definite pop sensibilities. The crowd was especially riled up and screams from them were louder then I have heard in the 9:30 in a long time. There was two drum sets on stage that were both utilized at certain times. The keyboardist was responsible for some of the great melodies especially on “11th dimension”. When they did “4 chords of the apocalypse” Casablancas showed his best of the night. Almost all the songs were good with some definite high moments, his stage diving for one.
Julian Casablancas - 4 chords of the apocalypse
Hint: Jeff's the one in the middle.
Fleetwood Mac-Dreams (Far Away Re-Edit)
tracks via: www.feelmybicep.com
The singer has a stage prescence prancing around the stage with his endearingly awkward falcetto, backed by versatile four piece who helped with the lyrics at times...that is when the band didnt have the entire audience singing along at the top of their lungs for the choruses of their most well known hits. It was hard to differenciate what or who was playing any given note which is a credit to the bands innovative approach. Their electronic sound is all created through live instrumentation albeit utilizing a myriad of effects pedals and fuzzboxes; it was hard to not be impressed with their musicianship by the end of it, truthfully I was expecting samplers and laptops to be onstage...of which there were none.
The biggest surprise of the night though was their choice of a cover for the second of their three song encore: "Dreams" by the Cranberries. It was an insprired if odd choice but the suprisingly the band was able to pull it off, and as you can see in the video below, the crowd got really into it.
Grateful Dead-Shakedown Street
This performance could be the best thing thats happened on this show since its inception. Turn it up, all the way up. These guys will be doing a show at the Rock and Roll Hotel in DC on March 29th and The Bowery Ballroom in NYC April 1st, get off your couch and go see it.
Broken Bells-The High Road
Dawes - When my time comes
Minnie Ripperton-Inside My Love
Aretha Franklin-Jump To It (Prince Klassan Re-Edit)
Noah and The Whale-Love of an Orchestra (Nightwaves Remix)
Olivia Newton John-Magic
Sleigh Bells-Ring Ring
Fever Ray-Seven (The Twelves Remix)
Amy Holland-She's On Fire
Big Boi-Shine Blockas (featuring Gucci Mane)
Dam Funk-The Sky Is Ours
Empire of the Sun-We are the People (Build Remix)
The Cave Singers - Helen
The Cave Singers - Beach House
World's End Girlfriend is Katsuhiko Maeda's project and he hails from Tokyo Japan. He has been making music since he was 12 years old and has mastered the art. These songs are contemplative, powerful and express a vast amount human emotion without uttering a word. The first track "Singing Under the Rainbow" is off his 2002 release Dream End Come True and the second "Birthday Resistance" is from 2007's Hurtbreak Wonderland.
World's End Girlfriend - Singing under the rainbow
World's End Girlfriend - Birthday Resistance