Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Top Ten:Wapsipinicon Flood Blues

If anybody would lives here knows, if you live next to a river in the springtime, the river tends to claim back what it once theirs when we get way too much rain and way too much water in the basement.  Personal to Bob Schneider of Olin, usually floods are typical in Olin and if you live there, you'll going to have a few more friendly visits from the Wapsi.  You may want to consider cutting back on your beer and cigarettes and get some flood insurance.  I love the Wapsi as much as anybody else, but enough to have it visit my basement in the springtime.

And if you see houses for sale for 7 thousand dollars in Independence with a scenic river view, think twice before buying.  Or keep your valueables on the highest floor.  Amazingly I managed to start listening to some new tunes and revisit old reliables.  The weather is nice today but guess what, we got the same shit storms coming this weekend again.  Ridiclous.

1.  Closer To Free-Bo Deans 1993  For a band that has been around for over twenty years, this is the only thing they ever came close to cracking the top ten and they gave this song to the Party Of Five TV show but I find this song is fun to sing along with.  And sometimes in this day and age of trails and tribulations, we all need something to sing along with.

2.  I Go Crazy-Paul Davis 1978  This was number one on the local charts for a whopping five weeks and actually for a MOR song it is pretty catchy and pretty emotional.  I know this song figured in my teen years while walking home alone after a saturday night high school dance.   For such a mellow song, this was sung by one of more uglier guys, long hair and a odd beard to boot.  Davis would touch the top ten a couple more times before concluding his career with 65 Love Affair, which was played a lot at Super Skate.  Another story for another time.

3.  Drop The Gun-Kings Of The Sun 1990  Oh goodness I love this band.  They made two albums here and one that didn't make it but the song that came off this album Full Frontal Attack, that album had the be the most sloppiest but most rockingist album of that year.  Made my best record of the year of 1990.

4.  Doctor Gee-Len Price 3 2007  Little Steven loves these guys enough to put out a album of theirs last year.  One good thing about the Underground Garage Show is that Little Steven continues to find these garage rock acts that play music as if 1966 never ended.  No disco, no grunge, no new wave, nada.  These guys love the sounds of the early Who, Creation, early Kinks, and Easybeats. Like The Stabilizers, LP3 celebrates their influences and they do it great.  Too damn bad that Best Buy hasn't supported the Wicked Cool artists like they did last year.  Last year we have four volumes of Coolest Songs In The World, this year we still waiting for the next volume.  I know I know, Mariah Carey is gonna save rock n roll.  Pfffffffft.

5.  Golden Light-Georgia Satellites 1986  B side to Battleship Chains, this song didn't much play on my player till I rediscovered it the other night.  And proves that Dan Baird is one of the great lost songwriters of the era.

6.  Beautiful Goodbye-Jennifer Hanson 2003  In a different era, this song would have fitted on lite rock radio but she did have a sizable hit with this on country radio.  But her label screwed around with her and six months she had this on and off the charts Capitol finally got around putting her album out.  Five years later, Hanson hasn't had a followup and her new label Universal South is doing the same thing Capitol did, lose momentium by not releasing anything except a video of a new song.  On a side note,  Little Big Town has signed with Capitol after getting their career back on track with two independent releases.  Before that, they made a album for Sony/Monument that died since the major label didn't promote it.  Some bands never learn.  But who knows, Capitol got lucky with Lady Antebellum's new album hitting number one on the contry charts.  We'll see where this goes.

7.  Thank You Girl-The Beatles 1963  Over the weekend I did pull out the VHS of I Wanna Hold Your Hand, a funny 1978 movie about 1964 era Beatlemania and a bunch of girls who wanted to crash the Fab Four's motel room.  Who could forget Nancy Allen's getting a big O, while holding Paul McCartney's bass when she got into the room.  I have no idea if this is out on DVD but I did get this on VHS a few years ago.  Makes me wish I could have been there with Beatlemania.  Or good music stations.  Unlike today.

8.  Outskirts-James McMurtry 1989  Jimmy Mack's latest is a classic but we go back to when he was just starting out and John Mellencamp helped him along the way by granting him studio time and his backing band to boot.  A tale about a guy trying to visit a love lost in a icestorm.  Hmm, he must have been living in Iowa eh?

9.  The Devil's Right Hand-Steve Earle 1989  I seen that Universal has reissued this as a overpriced two cd Definite Edition to which the second cd has a 1996 show which I'm sure is great but as I keep telling people, I get a little bit tired of rebuying definite albums only to see them reissued with bonus tracks or a bonus cd or DVD.  For 28 bucks, I'll keep my original copy but then again if I come across this used somewhere for 16, i'll then make the purchase.  This is one great song you can't mess up....unless you're Marah Carey or some American Idol warbler.

10.  The Rip-Portishead 2008  And finally, we end this on a strange note.  These guys sound like Kraftwerk, Neu!, Tangerine Dream and Throbbing Gristle with Beth Gibbons sounding lots like Kate Bush.  They make the sound their very own and really their new album is a strange listen, even to all the above mentioned songs, this sticks out like a sore thumb.  I think P3 is their most definite statement, but in the era of the album non existant that's not saying a lot if people can't hear or rather steal it online.  This also doesn't mean that while P3 is their best to date, like Throbbing Gristle or Sonic Youth, that I'm going play it everyday.  Especially when you're cleaning up the basement three weeks in a row.  For that I tend to pull out Yummy Yummy Yummy to get me out of my fowl mood.  This documents that I have listened to it and made a note of it and like the song enough to include it.  And to let the buyer decide wether or not to check it out.

My top tens are never bad songs.  If they were they wouldn't be included here.

Like Mariah Carey.

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Top Ten: Love And Loneliness

A sure sign of things returning to normal here, I'm back talking tunes and putting out a top ten of tunes of the week.  Due to all the wet weather, basement etc I missed out on National Record Store Day but I'm sure I'll will visit the ones in Iowa City eventually, but then again I found a couple twentys in a old pair of ripped pants so maybe that'll give me the gas money to do Madison.  But first it's GOTTA STOP FUCKING RAINING!!!!!

Songs you heard from me this week.

1.  Love And Lonelieness-The Motors 1980  These guys were pub rock till they caught up with future major head Jimmy Iovine and stuck a 1001 keyboards on this song and managed to get their highest charting hit in the US at a balmy 72.  Local charts had it much higher but when I hear this song I think this gave the forthcoming of Asia.  Not such a bad thing if you're into Asia.

2.  Having A Blast-Green Day 1994  Does it seem like yesterday that this album was the big event of the mid 90s after Kurt Corbain saw the future and then took it in his hands to exit?  The one thing different Green Day offered than the grunge that was fading faster than flannel in hot water was their music rocked a little harder and had more melody.  14 years later Dookie still remains a good listen.

3.  Cross Tie Walker-Creedence Clearwater Revival 1969  I was going to include a CCR song for last week till my brother took the CD to work and forgot to get it back till this week.  A lesser known song from the Green River album that has a bass hook that makes it memorable.  As for what I think about the other band Creedence Revisited....well sidemen need to make money too.

4.  Dice Beneath The Shades-Paul Westerburg 1993  After the implosion of the Replacements, Paul actually made a album better than the last two Replacements records but keeping it simple and rocking a bit more.  I always perfer Husker Du in terms of who was the better Minneapolis band but the Huskers never made a more fun album than Let It Be.  14 Songs, I bought at Relics after Mr Scott stuffed a copy in my collection of used CDs that he didn't want at that time and I have admit I listen to this whenever I see it.  I think this is the most Replacements sounding song of this album although I like the more punkier numbers.  BTW, Rhino has re reissued the Twin/Tone albums with bonus tracks and will follow suit with the Sire albums later in the year.  As for Mr. Westerburg, he hasn't made a listenable album since 14 Songs.   Your opinion might vary.

5.  This Time-Waylon Jennings 1974  Uh no, this is not a repeat of last week's song This Train which came out twenty years later but one of Waylon's bigger country hits of the 70s.  Diggy, our favorite Cali punker/rocker/troubador sent me a whole bunch of Waylon albums that I didn't have.  With all these CDs to listen to, I can pretty much not have to go the music store this week.

6.  My Life's Story-MXPX 2001  Ten years later a lot of these guys' early stuff has sound dated, after all they were mere teenagers when they did Life In General but four years and four hundered tattoos later they did managed to make an album that sounded lot like Green Day since they used his producer on The Ever Passing Moment and was their best effort for Interscope/A n M.  Inspirational lyrics:  Don't Hate Me Forever/I'm Better Late Than Never/I Failed You/I'm Sorry/That's simply My Life Story.

7.  Can't Explain-Long-View 2005 Another song that means a lot to me from a band that made one album for Sony and then disappeared.  Somewhat Coldplay sounding but with more guitars.  It also reminds me of somebody that was special but I don't hear much from nowadays.

8.  Too Late-Asia 1985  Ya didn't think I wasn't going to leave a Asia song off after mentioning them did ya?  This was the follow up to Go, their last top twenty hit but in reality when they made Astra, Steve Howe left, replacing by whammy bar specialist Mandy Meyer.  The album got slammed by critics but I liked it better than than the Alpha recording that came out before.  John Wetton must have gotten his heart stomped on quite a bit when they made this album.  Love, oh careless love.

9.  Just What I Need-Big Back Forty 1997  I'll continue to say that their Bested album was the best that the 90s had to offer from the last three years of that decade.  And it was the best of times kiddies, 99 cent gallon gas, VH1 still played videos, music stores in town, no oil men in the white house.

10.  Forever Came Today-The Backsliders 1999 And we conclude this with a remake of Roscoe Gang's song that pretty much, like the majority of the songs on this chart deals with the same subject that we all know so well.  Of love and loneliness.   The Backsliders came from North Carolina and made two fine albums for Mammoth that got lost in distribution disasters that never did promote their albums at all.  This comes from Southern Lines, an album of great Americana value.  Later members would find their way to Son Volt to which they would contribute on the first two albums before moving on.

And so it goes.

If you're keeping score.  The total still remains at 16 for new albums reviewed this year.  Last year at this time we had 27 reviewed.  The latest was Bo Deans Still. To which I have yet to play the whole album.  I'll try to put the review up when I'm more objective and not so selective.

The Top Ten Of The Week-Sponsored by Villa's Patio in Marion.

What's on your mind Diggy Kat?

 you're right Dookie is still a good listen! Having A Blast is a great song, i love Green Day but well i have all the Green Day albums =P

you're right! i don't even know Cross Tie Walker! 0.0

ah "THIS TIME"! that sure is a calm sounding album lol

i have to say i was a little disappointed upon first listen because i'm used to Waylon "tearing shit up" here and there lol and i was like "ok...maybe the next song will be a rocker....ok...maybe the next song will be a rocker....ok...maybe the next song will be a rocker....ok...maybe the next song will be a rocker...." LOL

Saturday, April 19, 2008

The One That I Used To Know Used To Know Me The Best

This is not music releted so for you music heads you can pass on this.

Last night while on an all nighter of fans and papers and trying to keep water out of the basement, I got a email from somebody that i used to know that used to be the one that I love.  It's amazing how you don't keep touch, people fade away, move on and you can bottle your emotions.  When they come back to write about those days gone by, it does bring back emotions I didn't felt.  So I spent half the night cussing out the rain and weather and half the night crying.

Funny it's been a while since I've done that.

So I'm thinking here while reading her note about the times past and now she's did let me on things I somewhat knew.  Yes, I knew she was married, I kinda figured that from some of her earlier mailings.  And she's a proud mom of a new baby girl to which I bet she got her mom's looks.  Which leads to my thoughts on the subject of love and realtionship.

I have 5000 Cds.  Which means I'm very good at finding CDs.  When it comes to love/marriage/etc. I stink.
I am 47 years old, and never been married and never came close to being engaged to somebody, though I did give one a promise ring before that went south.  I have never had a relationship go past three weeks except one time.  I always thought that when I found somebody it would be forever.  I never went to our prom, couldn't find nobody, nobody wanted to go with me.

All through my life, i had asked and got rejected more times than not.  Sure I broke a few hearts in high school, and yeah they came back to haunt me years later when i hooked with a old high school flame twice.  It didn't work out.

If it wasn't for the internet I'd be classified a virgin.

Then I met the one that I used to know and I went out to there and she came out to here.  When she came out here that was the last time I was truly happy.  Then a third and final meeting up in rainy Oregon and we went seperate directions but still managed to keep in touch.

I still miss her, always will.

Sometimes things don't always work out.  I can imagine nobody wanting to come move out here to Iowa, it sucks in the wintertime and even worse in the springtime.  Those beautiful harvest moon nights in September are few and far between and you have to go through nine months of crappy weather and humidity and tornados and thunderstorms to get to those fall evenings.  It ain't for everybody, so's California.  Iowa is hell, it sucks but it is my home and place of employment.  Certainly I would have loved to jump at the chance to move out to be with her had I had enough money saved up and had some kind of gainful employment that wouldn't make me go starving in the streets.  Too many people do that on the net, they fall in love with a image but when you get to meet that person and see what they are like, it takes more than two three days, months, to get to know that person.  I have faults, I'm not perfect, far from it.  I have a CD buying habit that has gradurated from vinyl buying and from 45 buying.  And for 45 years I have lived in the finer music stores in the tri state area.  But look at it this way, it's better than cheating on someone you love.  Better than doing drugs or booze.  As I told her back then, let me save up at least ten thousand dollars and see what happens. 
As I said before I'm not good with relationships, E Harmony can't do beans for me.  I have not dated since 2001.  My last GF ended up overdosing in 2004 and since then I have been very reclusive and don't care if I ever find anybody again. Thirty years of rejections will do that to you. I don't want to bring children into a world of idiot presidents, high oil prices and gangs all over the country.  And besides, I can't afford to have any.   It's too late for me, by the time they gradurate, I'll be 70.  Kinda hard to play football with your sons when your back goes out.

I don't have much to offer should anybody want to take the chance.  I am my own worst enemy, I'm set in my ways and though the mind is willing but body isn't.  If anything I am frugal, I'd be even more if I wasn't buying music.

What I do offer is being faithful for that person, even when they moved on.  Though my heart is stone after years of indifference and rejection, I still have a soft spot for the special one.  I'm not rich, but that doesn't mean that we can't go out on the town if need be but when you're pushing fifty, the bars and performing venues are made for the younger generation.

I fight depression on a regular basis, get mad at bad news when I read the internet and have a bad temper but never take it out on anybody that i know or love.   I still think that I'm a good person, even thouth Ruth Mund told me when I was daycaresitting when i was 18 that I was a bad influence on kids and shouldn't have any of my own.  Well, she can sleep at night better knowing that won't happen.  The only vice that I do have is that I do tend to buy out the cd stores. 

And it so it goes.  I live life the only way that I can, and strange to say I do the same things that I did when I was 7 or 17 and will do so till i turn 50 and after that the record stores will have to fend for themselves.
I may not be around by then but I did the best that I could in this life. 

And to the one that I used to know that used to know me'll always be a part of my heart and I'll always love you.  I'm not sure why certain people pop in and out of this life at odd times but I'll always leave the light on should they want to come over and talk about the good times.

And they really were pretty good times.

I just can't change the present nowadays.  We are not the same anymore and life has dealth you and I a different set of life happenings. 

Anything is possible, the pieces just have to fit in the right spot at that time.  For when it's gone and the chances have disappeared, you cannot get that chance back.

And I know that all too well.

DIGGY KAT comment:

 beautifully put, heartbreakingly relatable. it is odd how certain special ones have a habit of falling out of touch then arising again in the oddest times. i know how that goes. it's a rollercoaster of emoti..( love ya Crabb

Love ya too Diggy!

Friday, April 18, 2008

Crabb Bits:Asia Phoenix, Stupid People

It's raining hard again, which means I'll probaly have to go turn all the fans on and hope that the damn water don't seep in like it did last week but my faith in Mother Nature and all thngs good is gone. 
This month has been total hell.  Last night going home, my right rear tire fell apart about a mile out of Viola which I drove home on rims.  Figured what the hell, if nothing else I can always use another rim.  Good thing we didn't go to Wisconsin after all.

I was listening to the end of the new Asia record Phoenix to which the tire blew after the end of An Extraordinary Life to which I was trying to comment on the album before the car shooks an shakes disturbed my thoughts.  Anyway, I am a Asia fan in some way, I bought all their Geffen albums, took a listen to the John Payne led band of the late 80s and early 90s and thought he was jive and dismissed most of their albums beforehand.  I'm sure John Payne is a great guy and very reliable person to have in your band but his singing and songwriting are more hair metal than prog rock.  I did check out Aqua when it came out and although the harmonies were there and though Carl Palmer and Steve Howe did play on some songs, Payne's OTT singing pretty much render that album a laughingstock among certain music stores at that time. Aura was better, in fact I gave it a B plus way back then, but a second listen made me question my reasoning and I docked it a letter grade and donated it to the bitchings of the halfwits at Goodwill Industries. More about them later.

Asia, has only had four studio albums proper with John Wetton and company but later editions (Featuring Pat Thrall, Greg Lake in a 1985 showcase, and then the reform 90s band with the aforementioned John Payne made about the same but about forty live shows and double of the retrospectives and best ofs comps. In fact I think there are twice as many Geffen/Universal Asia best of albums then studio albums. 

All Music gives Phoenix a generous four star rating.  Problem is it's a three star album at best.  There's simply too many slow tempo ballads that kill the mood of the album towards the end.  In the CD era we've seen too much of that, hour cds that overstay their welcome.  And although Asia has members from King Crimson and ELP and Yes, there tends to be a bit too much lush ballardry that would have sounded better at around 1988.  Twenty years later this sounds a bit dated and out of its time.  But I'll give them props and it does sound like John Wetton sounds he's happy to be alive.  I just wish they would have rocked out a little bit more than the sappy stuff of I Will Remember You which sounds like The Smile Has Left Your Eyes Part Two, only with less bitter lyrics.

I like to bargain hunt but sometimes what I buy at Goodwill turned out to be records that were too scratchy for me to keep them and although I do my best to check them, the old 20/20 vision doesn't see the vertical scratches that make the needle disco dance all around the record.  So they go back.  Sometimes I donate CDs that I can't sell and bascially in this day and era even the shipping the CDs overexceeds what I bought for them.  You can't sell them to CD's Plus, the bastards don't get you much for them so what's left is to take them to the local Goodwill or Salvation Army.

I'm sure the good people at Goodwill are good hardworking people but they seem to keep the pricks and brainless at the donation center doors.  Last year I dropped off about 75 CDs at the Iowa City store and the black dood there didn't thank me or anything.  Neither did the dumbblone at the marion store.  I tried talking to her but she seemed to be in la la land and probaly was only up there to do community service.  Ever tried to unload two big crates of LPs?  They are heavy and real cumbersome to get out of the car.  Missy didn't bother to help, she just rushed out one of those carts that was already full.  Didn't bother to say Thank You for Donating or Have a Nice Day or Piss Off.  After she shut the door, I made she heard me when I hissed at the door *Your Welcome.  I'm sure she'll be moving .. community service to go back to strip dancing at Woody's or the Lumberyard number 2.  As they say, dumb as a box of rocks, betcha she wants to be the next Britney.

And so here I am, writing this while hearing the damn sound of another monsoon rain from another stalled front that will flood everything all over again and just mad as hell at The Powers That Be about this goddamn rain.  And rest assured that I'll be running fans all over again all weekend and hoping for some miracle that it don't seep in but my miracles are all used up, with this and 3.50 gallon gas, endless bad news of things going up and having to postpone Madison since I have to work this weekend.  Hell I have to, gotta make the money so we can fill the damn car to get to work.

Mission accomplished Bush.  Idiot.

BTW, it rained so much we got water in the basement second week in a row.  Goes well with the tire blowout and pants blowout as well.

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Top Ten: Ryan Adams Wants To Talk To You

After a small two day vacation, it's time to go back to work to work Saturday.   And we're trying to dry out but once again another fucking rain storm coming just in time this week.  We can't stay dry enough to dry things out.  And now I can't find my fracking copy of CCR's Green River.  Amazing how 5000 cds I have and when one disappears I can't find it. GRRRRR.

1.  Limelight-Rush 1981  New Rush live album, the public rejoyce!  But I have the forty five of this song when it came out.  My best friend is the biggest Rush fan I've known.  So much to the point that I haven't played my Rush stuff, except for this.  I also told him if you get any type of band put together I'll be happy to play this song.  But you have to learn U Can't Touch This in return.

2.  Straight Ahead-Brian Auger's Oblivion Express 1974  The only thing I found at a forgettible Tri City trip this week.  I didn't go to Madison for this?!?  Lotta scratchy forty fives that would have found a home had they not been in a Rock River flood.  I'll put one or two up later in this list.

3.  Cheney's Toy-James McMurtry  2008  I love protest albums of this day and age.  I think James is the best protest writer of this time, he understands our hatred and our pain of the two bozos who have for seven years tanked us into the Great Depression Two.  James is everything that wasn't present on Neil Young's Living With War album.  The other best protest writer of this era?  Al Jorgensen of Ministry.

4.  Bastards Of Young-The Replacements 1985  Minneapolis was where it was at back around the time this album came out.  Such great indee music from these guys and their counterparts Husker Du.  But once these guys signed with the major labels the end was in sight.

5.  Go And Say Goodbye-Buffalo Springfield 1966  Seen the actual forty five of this at the Salvation Army at Moline but it was too far gone for me to even pick it up as a reference copy.

6.  This Train-Waylon Jennings 1994  Waylon's second homecoming with RCA only came up with one album (Waymore's Blues Part Two) and so so reviews but upon further listening this album does hold up very well.  These sessions would later evolve into The Highwaymen's Road Goes On Forever.

7. Over You Again-Willie Nelson 2008  The outlaw today.  Willie is the only outlaw remaining.  I'm surprised I even bought a album that was co produced with Kenny Chesney.  Not desperation really, the new Willie is his best in years.

8.  Meet Me On The Fourth Floor-Brownsville Station 1973  B Side to the I'm The Leader Of The Gang.  Hard to figure it was 35 years ago that Brownsville was on the charts.  ('Geez dad, you listen to THIS when you were teenagers?') And by the way Dad, what did you do before the internet and cellphones?

9.  Love Don't Live Here-Lady Antebellum 2008  New country song that would pass as a Americana the last decade or rock and roll back in the 80s.  It's country cuz somebody overdubbed a steel guitar into the song.  You're going to be hearing a lot from this band if you turn on GAC.  But GAC's programming is getting to be a lot suspect anymore.  They play very few videos but they still play Brad Paisley's Fifth Gear Promo every other day. Or The Cliche ridden Nashville Hit Men thingy.  And the price of programming is this?  Same video documentries every other day.  Sure hope digital TV better cuz analog is the fucking pits.
10.  I Am The Sword-Motorhead 1993  Where else can you go from country to hard rock to Lemmy then the Crabb Top Ten.  Culumus channel would have a cow if their radio station had a limitless playlist of all genres.

And I wish I can find that damn CCR CD.

James McMutry-Just Us Kids (lightning rod)

Continuing the Bush Bashing with the album that Neil Young should have done with Living With War. This might be his best release yet with kick ass songs such as Cheney's Toy, Bayou Tortours and more songs about the great depression (Hurricane View, God Bless America (pat mcdonald must die) and the pratfalls of playing in a band and getting replaced by session musicians when the big moment arrives (Ruby And Carlos). The digipak sucks though which is docked a point. But don't let that deter you from buying this, this might be the best so far of the year.

Grade A minus

Lady Antebellum (Capitol)

The next big thing in country music, starts out as hard rockers then regressed as the record progresses. A bit more melodic and less abrasive than Sugarland but with the usual country flair toward those weepy ballads that are all over this album, though there's nothing here that matches the catchiness of their hit single Love Don't Live Here and Looking For A Good Time, which sounds somewhat like Georgia Satellites.  After that, they go with that safe country rock that seems to be the norm but thankfully these guys write their own material and don't have to rely on the Nashville Cliche Men that you hear so much on country radio.  You say you don't listen to country radio?  Well ain't you the bodacious one.  Nevertheless Lady  Antebellum isn't too bad, but I think they would make a good Americana band if they leave the fiddles and steel guitar out.

Grade B minus
Pick hits: Love Don't Live H
ere, Looking For a Good Time

Fun fact: Hillary Scott is the daughter of Linda Davis, minor female country artist of the 80s and 90s.

Asia-Phoenix (EMI)

The original band is back and rocking like it was 1983 all over again.  Beats anything John Payne sings. Without the echoey Mike Stone productions of the classic years, Asia still has lots of John Wetton overdubs, the usual  love gone wrong songs (Never Again, Alibis) and a bit more progressive rock to it (No Way Out) and a bit more sunnier outlook from Wetton (An Extraordinary Life) Phoenix picks off where Alpha ended.  But I always thought Astra was a better album despite Mandy Meyer taking over for Steve Howe.  Oh, don't worry about John Payne and the other Asianites, they're playing under the Asia Featuring John Payne banner.  Accept no subsitutes.  Grade C plus

Pick Hits: Sleeping Giant/No Way Back, Never Again, An Extraordinary Life

BTW, Ryan Adams wants to talk to you.  Visit his website on his thoughts and why smoking a pack of cigarettes a day can inspire you to write five albums a year. And being called too indulgent. brother took the CCR CD and brought it back

Saturday, April 12, 2008

George Ziemann writes Why Major Labels Do not get it

Promotional CDs

I used to work for a newspaper, editing a weekly entertainment supplement. As a result, I've got a stack of movie photos and some of the promotional CDs that studios sent to me for review. Record labels seem to believe that once they give you one of these CDs, they still own it. Forever.

The current embodiment of this ridiculous viewpoint is,_Inc._v._Augusto claiming he has no right to resell promotional CDs that he buys from secondhand stores. UMG says Augusto is infringing their copyright by his actions, even though the copyright law clearly states that this is not a violation. It's called the First Sale Doctrine. Once a CD has been sold, the buyer can do whatever they want with it, including resell it. Augusto bought his copies at a secondhand store.

Logic would decree that there is no legal issue here. Logic does not visit Universal Music. They put a sticker on their promotional CDs that says they are "not for resale." In their tiny minds, this supercedes the law. They tried this at the dawn of radio by stamping albums "Not for Broadcast" so that the radio couldn't play them. It didn't work then and it's not going to work now.

Wired has a brief article on this one,(Link doesn't work due to statue of limitations or Google's bullshit claims it's an attack site)  too, which brings us to the parts I don't understand.
Universal Music's claim is that Augusto could not have bought these CDs legitimately because the sticker says they're not for sale. Apparently, they think Augusto has to prove the existence of used record stores, then explain how each copy made it from Universal's manufacturing facility to the store because no one was supposed to sell it to a store. I think all he needs is a receipt.
The peak of absurdity comes in response to Augusto's statement that, if he can't sell a particular CD, he'll give it to someone or throw it away. Universal's court brief says that "Both are unauthorized distributions."

Don't tell me I can't throw a promotional CD away. I throw away some of the ones I buy.
The mystery is why anyone would waste the time, effort, money, as well as that of the judicial system, to file a federal court case based on this ludicrous theory.  GZ From AzOz.

In the end, they threw out Universal's lawsuit.

Universal lost again on the appeal in 2011.  But then again I don't think Universal wold really won't back those promos of Another Dumb Blonde by Hoku that you see 20 copies of at your local donation store.  And whatever happened to Hoku? She got tired of the Universal BS and became a mom.

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

TOP TEN: August In Arizona

Another reason why we’ll have four dollar a gallon gas...I have planned a week vacation in Arizona one last time.  Going via Allegiant Airlanes, let’s hope that they don’t go bankrupt or I’m up shit creek.  Instead of heading to Sky Harbor, the plane lands at Mesa Airport.  Should be interesting and will play a role in wether or not I ever fly again.  Another body cavity search and no more no more.

If you care, Al Bundy is taking his Married With Children show over to Spike TV.  No big shakes, since FX still has Hank Hill and King Of The Hill to waste our analog tv hours.

And now, this weeks songs in the player.

1.  Wash It Away-Black Lab 1997  One hit wonder band who was supposed to make it big right? But instead had one hit and the public bought and then got rid of their album, thus ushering in the digital download era.  People wanted the single and not the rest of the album.  No great shakes.

2.  Don’t Take It Home-The Townedgers D/B/A Route 66 1983  Had to change the Route 66 name, this is from the album that started a 25 year career of being legends in their own mind.  Strange to hear R.Smith’s voice back then.

3.  Sometimes A Fantasy-Billy Joel 1980  Can’t stand Piano Man but I did like Glass Houses, BJ’s most rock sounding album.  I still think it holds up to date but again taste is in the ears of the beholder.

4.  Prisoners Of Rock And Roll-Neil Young/Crazy Horse 1987  The last album he did for Geffen.  All of the Geffen albums were spotty and WTF at best and this one is no different although this song does hint at a return to the garage rock that would become Ragged Glory.

5.  Planet Love-The Dylans 1991  Riding on the coattails of the Charlatans UK was this band from the UK.  Found this for a buck at Best Buy years ago and still like this album a bit.  Alternative rock back in the early 90s was pretty good, at least that’s what I think.

6.  Baby, Stop Crying-Bob Dylan 1978   Speaking of the other Bob, this was a minor hit off his problematic Street Legal album, made just before he became a gospel star.  The tip off, the background black female singers on this song.

7.  Her Eyes-Pat Monahan 2007   Train rocks.

8.  Found Love-The Darkside 1991  No relation to The Darkness, these guys owe more to the Dylans and Charlatans UK but a bit more abstract.  And from this sounds, a way bit more drugs too.  Alternative rock in the early 90s, as I said before was the last true final frontier of real good music before Nu Metal and Britney Spears ruined everything.

9.  Cashbox-Big Head Todd And The Monsters 2007  Free music always sounds great.  Have no idea if All The Love You Need will get a true release date but I still think this album is Big Head Todd’s best since Sister Sweetly.  And I got it for free too just by writing in.

10. The Blue Mask-Lou Reed 1982  More noise please.  Nothing cleans the old eardrum better than a nice blast of feedback.  But what pisses me off is that on the reissue of this cd, that they didn’t bother to include the lyrics to this album to which you have gotten on the vinyl version of this album.  Liner notes can be a bit bloated and self serving, at least Buddha Records when they issued Growing Up In Public they added the lyrics.

Deeds not words dammit.

Thursday, April 3, 2008

TOP TEN: Legends Of The Past

Continuing the ongoing saga of what’s playing here in crabbtown.  Baseball has started, The Cubs are fucking around as always and can’t seem to beat the Brewers.  Kerry Wood can’t pitch no more and he isn’t going to cut it as a stopper.  Better find somebody that can otherwise it’s going to be a long year.
Coming later in the month regardless of 3.30 a gallon gas or more MadCity.

And now this weeks songs of notice and most of these artists have played a vital role in music for me.  Plus from Diggy, a obscure number from a British Invasion band.  And no, it wasn’t on the Dave Clark Five 50 Greatest Hits either.

Shall we?

1.  Gone Gone Gone-The Everly Brothers 1964  Their Warner stuff gets knocked around by critics and by around this time their label was giving them dated crapola but once in a while Phil and Don would write up a rockin song that cries out to be rediscovered.  So much so that Robert Plant and Alison Krauss got a hit out this song last year.  Of course there were worser versions of this song, ever heard Crow’s Version (nope not Sheryl Crow but another band)?

2.  I Like It Like That-Chris Kenner 1961  Perhaps the best known version from this obscure New Orleans singer that the Dave Clark Five got a sizeable hit four years later.  Kenner had other minor hits but a streak of bad luck and bad timing pretty much rendered him to the cult status.  Collector’s Choice reissued Land of A 1000 Dances last year, in today’s terms more like a EP rather than LP.  Fuel 2000 did a much better anthology which seems to have fallen by the wayside.  And so it goes.

3.  Let Her Dance-Bobby Fuller Four 1965  Out of all the Buddy Holly soundalikes, Fuller was the best since, like Holly came from Texas and had some decent garage rockers outside of I Fought The Law. Probaly my favorite of Bobby’s singles.

4.  Long Line Rider-Bobby Darin 1969  Mr. All Purpose, Darin switched to a more folk/rock style around the end of the 60s.  If you played this song, you’d swear that this wasn’t the same Darin who gave us Mack The Knife and Splish Splash.  I find Bobby’s Direction years to the most interesting of times, but soon afterwards, Bobby would sign with Motown and go back to the Mack The Knife style Vegas pop that seemed to be the most successful.  But by this time, the least selling and interesting.

5. Living Well Is The Best Revenge-REM 2008  They’re baaaaack and they may have made their most musical album since Monster although at times Accelerate fathers (namely on crappy track nine) at least we can all agree that they seemed to be rocking a bit harder and at least sounding more interested in what they’re doing.  That’s saying something especially after they conned into buying their album in a crappyassed digipak.  For a CD collector, going green sucks.

6.  Learning The Game-Buddy Holly 1958   Later overdubbed by The Fireballs and released as a single sometime in the early 60s, this is one Buddy Holly song you don’t hear very often but those who do record it as their own.  Leo Kottke did and so did The Bunch (A Fairport Convention offshoot band).  And Buddy fifty years gone still sounds like it was recorded yesterday.  But don’t take my word for it, seek and ye shall find.

7.  Working Without A Net-Waylon Jennings 1987  RCA thought Waylon was washed up, but MCA didn’t and so they signed Waylon and got him some choice songs to cover and turned out to be a comeback of sorts.  And I have found myself listening to more Waylon the past couple years than previous.

8.  When Will The Rain Come-The Troggs 1968  Hopefully not soon.  This was the B side to Love Is All Around and was found on a Import singles compliation.

9.  Get Out The Door-Velvet Revolver 2007 Adios Scott Wieland and don’t let the door hit you in the ass.  So sez Slash and the boys.  Goodbye VR, hello Stone Temple Pilots again.

10.  Put A Little Love In Your Heart-The Dave Clark Five 1968  And finally we conclude our legends series with a odd choice cover from the band that at one time challanged The Beatles for the British Invasion Champs.  While the Beatles progressed, the DC5 regressed and by the time this came out, they were pretty much forgotten on the AM dial.  Not released as a single, but Diggy sent me a copy of this song on a DC5 best of mixtape that he sent out this way.  However, in the Goldmine 45 RPM Records 3rd Edition, they do list Southern Man as a single in 1971 and I’m wondering if this is a cover of the Neil Young song.  Stock copies go as high as 50 dollars.  Final note:  the last known DC5 single was a version of Rub It In which was covered by Billy Crash Craddock.

The DC5’s song flopped.

PS  If you google Southern Man by DC5, it will take you to some websites that do have the song up in a thirty second clip.  They also do a cover of Signs (the five men electrical band hit), Draggin The Line (done by Tommy James) and a host of other songs.  Till Dave Clark ever releases them in our lifetime, this is what you got out there in net land.

I say...Dave Clark can do whatever he wants with the masters of the DC5 and he’s entitled to.  But withholding the songs that the world has to find the used bins is a mark against the band more than it does to Dave Clark.  And it shows a selfishness about him for that.  Maybe he realizes his music wasn’t that good as of the Beatles or Stones or The Who or other british bands.  However, when they did a song as heavy as Any Way You Want It or Bits Or Pieces or Glad All Over, they were at home on the radio like the rest of them.

And so it goes.

Pat Monahan-Last Of Seven (Columbia)

The Train head put this out late last year and it sounds just like a Train album although it reminds me more of Drops Of Jupiter, their biggest selling and least interesting album.  If you like slow to mid tempo radio ready songs, you’ll might find this interesting for a play or two.  But you won’t remember it.

Grade C plus

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Reviews: REM, The Who, RIP Klaus Dinger

But first, Velvet Revolver is shredding themselves of Scott Wieland whose became back to his old self once again.  Slash says that they have booted him out of the band and looking for the next vocalist.  He’s Stone Temple Pilot’s problem now.

And now the weekly turntable buys of odd value

REM-Accelerate (WB)

A triumph return to the guitar driven sounds of the 90s!  Um not quite.

Certainly this album feels more like a band effort than the ten year of turds that have been bestowed upon us and Mike Mills is heard a bit more in the background and Peter Buck sounds more interested this time as well.   It starts out with two rip roaring tunes that are worth another listen or two.  And it’s great to see the lyrics of what Mike Stripe is thinking of instead of trying to decipher.  But that was the fun of the early REM years, the jangly pop, the mystery mix and vocals.  Twenty five years later, REM has never sounded more upfront.  Living Well Is The Best Revenge and Man Sized Wreath do rock and most of side one is passible and pleasant.  But the the two tracks over four minites remind me why I didn’t listen to the last three albums, they tend to mender and Sing For The Submarine is a exercise in staying awake.  However the last two songs that barely pass over two minites woke me up to notice that Accelerate is probaly the best album they have done since New Adventures In Hi Fi, though it’s no Monster.  Bill Rieflen remains a good replacement but still REM still hasn’t fully recovered from Bill Berry’s retirement and may never will.  But at 34 minites this album doesn’t overstay it’s welcome.  Good but not a classic.  Dotched a notch for another crappy digipak.

Grade B  Regular Jewel case: B plus

The Who-Amazing Journey (Geffen)

Does the world really need another Who best of?!? Unless you’re a teenager who so out of step in the world that you go buy the CD at Best Buy.  8 tracks appeared on the last best of and on My Generation, the so called best ofs to end best ofs of the Who.  But this is the first time that Sea And Sand, the hardest rocking song of Quadrophenia makes a apperance and we get the 2001 live version of Won’t Get Fooled Again.  And two later day tracks that you can more or less live without out.  So unless you’re too lazy to compile your very own Who best of, this is for you but I wish the fucks at Universal who finally give us the complete 7 minite Baby Don’t You Do It which was the B side to Join Together on the forty five.  You remember forty fives do you?  If you’re under twenty five you are excused.
Grade B

RIP Klaus Dinger, who played drums and guitar in the german Prog Rock Neu! he died March 21.  He was 61.