Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Top Ten Of The Week-Reviews Don't Matter

Before I return back to the desert one more time I thought I give you this week's songs of note.  More new music and some classic stuff from my library of endless music.  So tell me Bob Lefsetz why I need Spotify?


1.   No Easy Way Out-Robert Tepper 1986  A product of the 80s with the beat machine going on full tilt and a whammy bar specialist to boot, I actually enjoyed this as a single but as album whole not really.  Tepper had a voice like Michael Bolton or Lou Gramm and could have replaced Gramm when Foreigner was looking for a new vocalist.  The typical one hit wonder, Tepper was never heard from again.


2.  Somewhere Far Away-Lowen & Navarro 1990  Too bad these guys never got bigger than just being a cult band and Eric Lowen's passing has silenced them forever but I actually found a vinyl copy of Walking On A Wire their Chameleon debut for a dollar and when I hear their voices I feel sad at times.   Funny how people want to have more money but as myself I'd rather trade my money for more time and about 20 years ago too.  You can't take money with you when you leave this world.  Somebody tell that to the rich bitches out there.

3.   Monkey Gone To Heaven-The Pixies 1989  Looks like I'm in a 80s mood eh since the first three have come from the late 80s or early 90s, that will be changing in the next one but the big news that Kim Deal aka Mrs. John Murphy has departed the band to probably focus on The Breeders a band I never got into anyway but if you in a 80s mood you'll be happy to know that Tommy Stinson and Paul Westerberg aka The Replacements are getting back together sans Chris Mars who's retired from music and Slim Dunlap still recovering from his illness and Bob Stinson dead.  I really don't have an opinion on that nor do I do about Kayne West and Kim K popping out another reality star as well.  The Pixies have been back together touring although the only new thing they did was a 7 inch single. Since discovering Surfer Rosa from the cheap bins, I decided that I'll give The Pixies catalog a spin and look at and Doolittle was the second pick up for me. I still think they were the ultimate alternative band but don't ask me about Frank Black's solo stuff, not that interested to go that far although I've been known to have a change of heart.

4.  Caught In The Storm-Goo Goo Dolls 2013  After the wettest of May and the other two months, June has actually been a dry month 15 days into and of course with Arizona coming up, I'll be there just in time to do the monsoon season, not exactly what I'm looking for.  Basically I've been jawing with some of my facebook friends about rain, they think we're getting dry, I still say we're still trying to dry out the damn basement.  The weekend they promised that we were going to hit with big rains and a flood watch was issued for some of this area but the rain split into two and went different directions before it made it here. Oh we got some rain but thankfully no downpours.  But in the meantime while the press was raving about the new Black Sabbath (more about that later) album and the great black hope that is Kanye West with his blasphemy titled album Yeezus coming into stores next week (who cares I don't) the Goos as I call them have a new album out Magnetic to which you probably read my review that it might be worth a hear. It's no different from Dizzy Up The Girl although there's more use of Pro Tools and some autotuner than I would like it to be. But I think it's an improvement over the last couple albums they had out.  At least they're not hanging with the odious Glen Ballard anymore.  A step in the right direction.

5.  Fire Walk With Me (Theme from twin peaks)-Angelo Badalamenti 1992.  Pure Moods, remember that album?  Virgin's answer to K Tel or That's What I Call New Age Music, The first volume of Pure Moods sold a ton (at the same time you can find for a dollar at junk shops too) and had my favorite Enya song (guess which one) but Pure Moods had two turds from Enigma (the god awful Return To Innocence) and a bunch of new age nonsense that was just as bad to listen to as that Rhino comp of industrial music.  Amazingly for all the Virgin Records artists, Pure Moods never included anything from Tangerine Dream, I'm sure something from White Eagle would have been better than Return To Innocence. Back in the early 90s there was this bizarre David Lynch TV show Twin Peaks to which a guy at work used to watch and tell me about the next day, like I really cared but I recall the theme to be quite listenable and for inclusion on this top ten.  As for Pure Moods the album, will I listen ever again or will I donate it back to the junk shop.  I think we all know the answer to that one.  Donated back to Goodwill (that didn't take long).

6.  Heard It In A Love Song-Marshall Tucker Band 1977  Upon discovering a long lost high school crush online it took me back into a time to which Marion Iowa was a happening place and not some shell of itself. While she was a year behind when she left town she didn't add any of her friends from High school which is kind of peculiar to me but some people are like that.  I guess this was our theme song which describes more about myself than any other song especially the words.  Marshall Tucker Band was varied in style, a little Bob Wills here, some southern rock there and plenty of blues gospel but this was a country song on rock radio hard to believe 36 years ago.  From the Country Tucker best of, that K Tel put out years ago and although they put in the edited Long Hard Ride and This Old Cowboy, this is the long version.  The Single version popped on the Love Songs album that Shout Factory put out a couple years ago.

7.  Indian Lake-Cowsills 1968  The original Partridge Family you might say The Cowsills was a working family band and when you think about it, they were probably the best of that power pop bubblegum that we used to make fun of when we were younger but what did we know?  When you hear songs like Indian Lake it does take you back to those glory days of AM radio.  But as they got older, the hits became less and less and The Osmonds took their place on the radio chart.  Freddy Weller, taking time off from Paul Revere And The Raiders had a country hit with this too.

8.  Empty-Montgomery Gentry 2011  New country is a GD joke and most of what KHAK plays is not the country that we grew up with and even the groups and artists of the early 00's have fallen by the wayside.  Montgomery Gentry after a decade at Sony Nashville moved over to Average Joe's for Rebels On The Run and let's face it folks, Montgomery Gentry is more southern rock than actual country, don't believe me take away the faux paus banjo and steel guitar and add more keyboard and they're up Lynyrd Skynyrd's alley (the Johnny Van Zant led L.S) or Charlie Daniels to which M.G. has shared musicians and CD himself.  But like ex labelmate Gretchen Wilson, they can't get arrested on new country radio anymore even though both new albums have continued the time honored tradition of being proud of veterans, America and unlike the Brantley Gilbert and Jason Aldean take the time to chat with fans after the show.  Eddie Montgomery ended up having back luck with illness and a wife that bailed on him but with the help of fans and band managed to keep his head up high.  The first two Montgomery Gentry albums remain their best and can be found in cheap bins and your opinion might vary, I still look at them as southern rock with a country twist.  Even more so today given the crap that is new country.  And they don't song about boom boom speakers and trucks although Damn Baby could have been the inspiration of  Dayum Baby from Florida Georgia Line.  Buyer Beware.


9.  Just My Imagination-Rolling Stones 1978   Public radio has been sucking of late as well. I can't tell half the shit they play and most of it is so bad that I end up switching the channel back to the overplayed classic rock of The Fox or KMRY which isn't much better and that new station from Muscatine that you pick up on the same frequency as KMRY when you go into Iowa City is no better then either The Fox or KMRY.  We have more music now then ever and radio continues to bore us with the same overplayed crapola.  The World Cafe comes on at 10 on KUNI and we finally get to hear something besides techno or bad crap from other side of the pond but somebody made a mistake and actually played this off Some Girls, the last true classic Rolling Stones album.  It also reminded me of the discovery of my old high school crush years ago. Turns out that she's a president or VP of a Ladies Auxiliary down in Texas, a big clash of differences between her and me.  Which forever will remain a mystery, why she picked me or picked on me during high school about going steady.   It never happened, hell my high school sweetheart had to ask me to the dance party.  Memories................

10.  Black Sabbath 1970/End Of The Beginning  Black Sabbath 2013  Before Kayne West's masterpiece comes out, Black Sabbath's new album should be the number 1 debut on the Billboard chart and even though Bill Ward doesn't play on it, Brad Wilk follows the lead quite well. It also amazing how End Of The Beginning   starts out with practically the same melody that begins Black Sabbath (the song) from Black Sabbath (the album), the former scared the hell out of me when I first heard it on 8 track but not so much as I get older but when you first heard it, you know you have heard nothing like that sort before.  But too bad that Bill Ward didn't partake into the new album, with the original four together it would have been an A minus album.  But still worth a hear if you're into Black Sabbath.

More western melodies:

Arizona Nights-The Route 66 Band 1983
Bertha-The Grateful Dead 1972
Got To Move-Elmore James 1962
Out Of The Blue-Tommy James 1967
Puzzles-The Yardbirds 1968

Chet Flippo, one of the best opinionated music editors passed away today.  Up till 6-6 this year he would write under the Nashville Skyline  columns.  This was his next to last entry about the outlaws of Nashville, (Willie and Waylon)

And his last:

Reviews don't matter anymore  proclaims Bob Lefsetz in one of his latest blog rants

Basically the problem is prog rock hater Rob Sheffield who if anybody read or saw the last Rolling Stone Review Guide Sheffield one star anything that was prog rock or one word bands.  We get it Rob you don't like prog rock, let somebody else who knows more or likes it to review it and leave the bad comedy act at the local comedy club.

As somebody that has like 14 YES albums I tend to take people like Sheffield with a grain of salt and a six pack of Tall boys to stomach much of his prog rock hatred.  He was born too late anyway to see the grand theatrics of Genesis and Peter Gaberial and whole album concepts like Thick As A Brick or Remember The Future or 23 minutes of Takus from ELP, if you are not a fan of Prog rock it will not be for you either. But you start out your hatred of it by quoting Oscar Wilde, you're either bankrupt for ideas or trying to be funny. Banish Sheffield to the cellar and play that 24 hour marathon song that The Flaming Lips did a while back. They who not know is advised to shut the fuck up and off for that matter.  Rob Sheffield is perhaps the worst reviewer in the history of Rolling Stone, not that Rolling Stone is cutting edge anymore, their record reviews edited down to Twitter form or in three sentences or less. Lefsetz may be right, reviews don't matter anymore, especially when Rob Sheffield makes light of anything that's rock and roll and from the 70s.

Ben Crabb is one of the employees at Ragged Records and they're doing a benefit for him and his girlfriend Sarah Campbell and Pete Sedlak at RIBCO the 25th of this month.  They were victims of a apartment fire on the 16th to which they lost their living quarters.

So the RIBCO aka Rock Island Brewing Company and Ragged Records will host a benefit which a few bands will play and a silent action will be happening.

The ratings will probably be over 2500 views but I don't think they will make it past 3,000 as I begin to prepare myself for The Last Bargain Hunt In Arizona trip but the Russian Women seemed to think that Online Casinos Suck Blog is going net them a man to which it has become the second overall most viewed blog, which makes me think they're either stupid or don't know that blog is basically reviews of some albums. It's one thing to be lonely and desperate and looking for a green card but it's another when you just click on something that has nothing to do with the dating scene.  Even though I have written more blogs this month, the only one that's cracked the top ten from this month was last week's top ten.  Again the top three are The Brains, Casinos Suck and Mexican Jumping Beans like they have been the previous month.  Maybe Lefsetz is right.  Blogs don't matter. Below, probably the one who's been reading the Casinos Suck Blog.  The things you do for glove.

Finally some of you might think that I have a new love steady but in reality I don't. 

Next week, a fill in for a top ten and if I have computer around my area I'll be broadcasting the events as they happen.  For the ten days, first two days: Mesa/Chandler/Phoenix, Sunday: Phoenix/Lk Havasau City/Kingman, Monday: Kingman/Bullhead City;  Tuesday-Wed Not sure:  Thursday: Tucson before wrapping the weekend up with a return to Mesa/Tempe.  Look out Hastings/FYE/Zia's I'm coming your way!  Just in time for the full moon/late quarter to take place.

And no, you don't live forever:  Slim Whitman the iconic country singer yodeling 90 year old which back in the 1980s enjoyed a resurgence of popularity with a string of TV commercials called All My Best past away. But at one time he was the biggest selling artist of the 50s in the UK.  He recorded for Imperial (later Liberty/United Artists), RCA and Cleveland International/Epic. And later saved the world from Martians with his music  in Mars Attacks!  Died of heart failure.

Even though he may have been the butt of many Johnny Carson jokes, or indifference from the youngsters, Whitman was one of the nicest guys you would ever want to meet even right up to the end. But then my dad discovered his music and proceeded to torture us within earshot of trying to yodel with Slim when he was doing his famous echophonic recordings to which Dad would sing with the record, record on 8 track and mailed them off to relatives, as if they ever listened to it.   Once upon a time, Slim Whitman did outsell The Beatles in the UK but in the 50s and has always maintain a rabid following from over there. Rose Marie was on the UK charts at number 1 for 11 weeks in 1955.  The oddity of his All My Best selling 4 million copies in the 1980s had a lot to do with the midnight showings of his TV commercial and Songs I Love To Sing charted at number 25 in 1980.  The Novelty wore off and Whitman return back to his cult following status soon after.  In 2010 Whitman recorded his last album Twilight On The Trail.

Slim Whitman had his share of fans, from Michael Jackson to George Harrison to Daniel Johnston to Rob Zombie.  But as long as we have Indian Love Call in our collection, we do have a defense against invading Mars army if ever such a thing comes up.  But SlimWhitman may have the distinction of being that rare artist that never made the headlines the wrong way, and no musician who ever worked with him or been around him has ever said a bad word about him.  No controversy or scandal.  That rare artist.  Another voice that you can never replace   God bless Slim Whitman.


TAD said...

Hey Crabby: Nice 2 C Marshall Tucker, & "Indian Lake" (which just got played on SOUND OPINIONS Sun nite, hadn't heard it in years).
Also: Rob Sheffield may hate Prog -- hell, a lotta the time I do, & I useta think I was a Really Big Prog Guy. But Rob's already done his masterpiece, a little volume called LOVE IS A MIX TAPE. He's already peaked-out, couldn't care less about his reviews.
When I was 15, I could listen 4 25 minutes waiting 4 something 2 happen. I don't have that much time left anymore. Altho their best stuff still holds my life 2gether, there is LOTS of stuff by Yes & ELP & King Crimson & Jethro Tull & Gentle Giant & Genesis & the Moodies & Pink Floyd & Procol Harum & other prog greats that I can't take (TARKUS, DUKE, TORMATO, mosta WORKS, ISLANDS, A PASSION PLAY, most later Moodies) & I think it's 2 late 2 convert me now. I DO think you hear things diffrently at an advanced age(?) then you do when you're 15 & just hearing stuff 4 the 1st time.
Even Lester Bangs liked some Prog -- ELP, 4 instance....

R S Crabb said...

Yep, it shows on Sheffield's reviews on RS are basically afterthoughts if anything. at work if things go well, I can listen to a long piece, don't mind Passion Play, Tarkus another story and I got scared off Works Volume 1 although Volume 2 is more compact and has better songs. Tangerine Dream as well, I can navigate through their 45 minute Lagos if I'm taking a drive in the country but it's not for everybody. ;)

And Lester Bangs was something else. He called Metal Machine Music the greatest album in the history of the eardrum once. I'll have what he's having.

TAD said...

Hey Crabbsta -- Just read Sheffield's review, & it's not that bad. I can even relate 2 some of it -- Prog as escape from highschool, parents, girls, etc. I've read WAY worse reviews, have even written some myself.
I think you really need 2 love this stuff in order 2 dig into the worst Prog appropriately. I've been having this ongoing hate-hate thing with Barclay James Harvest lately, listening 2 their oldest & "proggiest" stuff -- & man does most of it SUCK! All Prog definitely was not great, & the worst of it was Really Bad....

R S Crabb said...

Barclay James Harvest always struck me as a low rent Moody Blues. Gentle Giant another can of worms although I think their was a 1981 album but then again I really cant get into their music either. Guess you have to be careful with some of those prog rock stuff out there. ;)