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Ward in SC

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  1. Aired this last weekend, that was a great broadcast. Isbell is on an amazing streak right now.
  2. Figured I could dispense with a ranked count of my top ten, but I'm intentionally starting with this one: American Twilight, by Crime and the City Solution I really had no expectations for the first album in 23 years for Simon Bonney's Crime + the City Solution. To be perfectly honest I knew this band, and liked them pretty well, knowing them as "that band' from Wings of Desire and as contemporaries of Nick Cave/The Birthday Party; but my interest was piqued mostly by the fact the one David Eugene Edwards had been invited to join this re-formed unit. That's one way to get me on board. But what. a. record. That's two decades to build up a good head of steam and bile. Then convene in Detroit of all places (American twilight, see?) and create a soundtrack to fading greatness and holding on to a glimmer of hope. Here comes the rain, folks. [And, yes, it is lovely to hear David Edward's Gretsch draped all over this record] and for the rest of the best: Avery County I'm Bound To You, by Barton Carroll I ask only that you consider listening to this song to hear one of the better lines delivered last year (last verse). Rabbit Runs A Destiny, by Duquette Johnston Day of the Dog, by Ezra Furman Could have had his other 2013 album here, too. What a busy young man. Push Any Button, by Sam Phillips Ruby Red, by The Love Language Anger, Hunger, Love, and the Fear of Death, by Dorado The Messenger, by Johnny Marr Push The Sky Away, by Nick Cave & Bad Seeds
  3. "I find them [love songs] odious" - Michael Stipe. Oh, he was just being contrary I think, REM eventually began offering up sentimentality with the best of them, right? Who doesn't love a good love song? I was a child in the seventies and we owned a radio, so...yeah. So after three or so decades of top 40, heavy metal, new wave, punk, "indie rock", r&b, hip-hop, country, folk, and now whatever it is I listen to now - I am not surprised how easily the soft rock love songs of the 70's worm through my head, I started compiling a list of them and realized hey! I can still tolerate some of these. What's more, some more of them I genuinely still love. Midnight Rocks, Air Supply, Juice Newton, Just When I Needed You Most. Please Don't Go to Islands In The Stream. Eventually this list made it out of my head and onto the internet: http://open.spotify.com/user/wardcrittendon/playlist/4RhwnDaajsdtAGrBbOWQCd
  4. Rest, Jason. This has been simply heartbreaking. Not unexpected to hear from some circles, but certainly unexpected by me. I hesitated to call my friend (who I referenced above) as I did not want to be the person who told him. He and Molina had exchanged letters and packages over the last couple of years. Of course, he'd already heard. I am much more familiar with the man's works nowadays, and continued to hold out hope we would see more of Mr. Jason Molina. But it was not to be. There is a lot out there for anyone who wants to know. I'm not eloquent enough to convince anyone to listen, so I'm going to quote another friend's post in reaction to today's news: "Songs of myth and darkness and sadness that felt like a comfort." And then he shared this. I'm going to suggest listening to Hold On Magnolia (spotify link). Or, watching it. Or to catch a glimpse of how majestic a band that wears it's Rolling Thunder Revue & Crazy Horse influences can be - see the last 9 minutes of this video: https://vimeo.com/4494800
  5. The younger me would have hated him, just because he wasn't Robert Smith. Or Lou Reed, or Johnny Cash. Whatever. The adult, parent me - well, I'll admit I became a fan after The Social Network. Now I'll watch - or listen- to anything he does. Not bad at all for a kid from Tennessee via the Mickey Mouse Club.
  6. When I chance upon a band with a new album that I begin to like right away, and upon further investigation discover that they've been around for a while and have something like 3 or 5 or 10 albums that came out before this one; I have to fight a feeling of mild panic and anxiety. Does anyone else experience this? Because I'm already pressed for time to listen to the music I know and love. And I've found time to discover this new thing and that's always good. . But now I learn, it's not new. There's a lot more listening to do, and when am I going to that? Hm? I know, not a real problem as problems go. But I'm experiencing it (again) with a new record by Radar Bros. I'd seen the name before because I always am checking out releases from Merge Records. But not until a strong recommendation from a friend did I listen to their new album Eight. It turns out to be a rather bracing record of Left Coast indie pop in the vein Grandaddy or Earlimart, but with an edge of Sparklehorse. And the occasional melody that Elliot Smith may have not gotten around to. Making a very strong impression on me early in the year. [And despite the title, it appears I only have six previous releases to check out]
  7. I bought it yesterday after hearing one track at the local record store. Okay, I was inclined to get it anyway but the song (Upstarts) just hit me in the right places. At first blush, one listen in the car, and I love it. A meaty sound and well-crafted songs. Some reviews suggest it lacks a distinct personality. Maybe so, have to suss that out after more listens. But we're talking about a guy who was joined at the hip with one of the great outsized personalities of all-time in rock music, Steven Patrick Morrissey. Why try to out-personality that? He's always let his musicianship do his speaking for him.
  8. Ward in SC

    The Wrens

    Coincidentally, a Facebook update today from The Wrens (and they have been fairly regular - and usually quite funny - on Facebook lately so it's not out of the blue): "shy some lyrics, some vocals & some final mixing, Three Types of Reading Ambiguity.Logic done (no, will not be the real title)" I like that they don't seem to put much pressure on themselves to get the next record out. That's healthy, ha! Not that that the long periods of time should lead anyone to think they lack for purpose or intensity. The records alone should prove that is not the case. Also, although I have been to SXSW only once, it happened to be a year that The Wrens were in attendance. I didn't see anyone else on that weekend that brought the same levels of joy and energy and pure rock'n'roll as that band of middle-aged rock lifers did.
  9. Welcome back! I always look forward to your music-related posts. The last Lanegan album I'd heard was Bubblegum, and I didn't even realize he had a new one. Must check it out. (I did really like his work in The Gutter Twins, too.) Thank you, Jason! One can expect a Lanegan's record to live in the same neighborhoods as those of his friends and collaborators; so fans of Greg Dulli, PJ Harvey, even Nick Cave are probably going to enjoy them. But there are tracks on Blues Funeral that could be New Order or Pet Shop Boys lost tracks...and yet they fit right in beautifully.
  10. Released at the beginning of '12, and for me, was never topped. Not even by my beloved David Eugene Edwards. Lanegan's first record since 2004, Blues Funeral was almost summary of the man's career, from the psych and stoner rock of the Screaming Trees and Queens Of The Stone Age to the electronic treatments of his collaborations with The Soulsavers; and long-carried influences of blues and folk. As good as this record was, in 2012 he still managed to keep a near-perfect record of quality collaborations and one-off projects, including a lovely Karen Dalton cover and three tracks on the Nick Cave/Warren Ellis soundtrack to Lawless. [And still improbably managed to not play a show in the Southern U.S.] Despite a two-decade record of excellence in rock music, the man seems almost criminally under-recognized, even in circles of people who love music. For a taste, consider the ground covered in 16 minutes of thehttps://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dCa9BBVeTjo. Or link to a Spotify playlist of Lanegan collaborations and contributions. My list: 1. Mark Lanegan - Blues Funeral. 2. WovenHand - The Laughing Stock 3. Father John Misty - Fear Fun 4. Calexico - Algiers 5. Frida Hyvonen - To The Soul 6. Alejandro Escovedo - Big Station 7. Explorers Club - Grand Hotel 8. Chuck Prophet - Beautiful Temple 9. Big Dipper - Big Dipper Crashes on the Platinum Planet 10. Lawless soundtrack - Nick Cave/Warren Ellis/The Bootleggers + various artists And- hello all - it's been a while.
  11. If this is truly the only Van Halen thread on this forum, it really shouldn't go any further without a from Running With the Devil.
  12. It might have been a little more major 10, 15, or 20 years ago. But I think it's still pretty cool. <snort> Yes, my refined tastes! VH circa 1978 to 1984 - best rock band in America (as in, rawk). [i would like to maybe put Cheap Trick in that slot; but the Trick simply did not lay down a 6-album streak of gold to start their career in the way that Van Halen did.] They were the essence of everything good about rock music. First of all, they had the blues and the boogie. They were not-always-clean fun with a capital F. Sometimes unsettling and sometimes threatening. Melodies, harmonies, and, well, Eddie Van Halen. And David Lee Roth? Not fair. They were larger than life. And they did Kinks covers, and did them well. So I certainly won't begrudge them this reunion, and I'll probably be picking up the new record at some point. I'm just curious about what happened to them between 1984 and now. Anyone?
  13. dropping in to add my list. Happy New Year, everyone! 1. Dolorean "The Unfazed" 2. Wilco "The Whole Love" 3. Alela Diane& Wild Divine "AD + WD" 4. Feelies "Here Before" 5. Dengue Fever "Cannibal Courtship" 6. Wild Flag "Wild Flag" 7. David Kilgour + The Heavy Eights "Left By Soft" 8. Daniel Martin Moore "In The Cool Of The Day" 9. REM "Collapse Into Now" 10. Screaming Trees "Last Words" And a few others: Richard Buckner 'Our Blood' Ezra Furman 'Mysterious Power" Centro-matic 'Candidate Waltz" Glossary 'Long Live All of Us" Wooden Wand + the Briarwood Virgins Wussy 'Strawberry' Jesse Sykes + Sweet Hereafter 'Marble Son' Wooden Shijips Reigning Sound 'Abdication' a few of my favorite songs: British Sea Power "Who's in Control?" Centro-matic "Only In My Double Mind' Wilco "One Sunday Morning" Yellow Ostrich "WHALE"
  14. Ward in SC


    All of that is true. Which is why I really have no nostalgia about them despite the tone of my last post. The ones I have, I'll keep until I one day have the means to convert to digital. But their impact on music beyond the realm of nostalgia cannot be denied. If in the 80's you were an underground/DIY musician with no real connections or means of otherwise recording and distributing your music... you probably trafficked in cassettes. Punk, experimental, hip-hop. If I remember correctly Option magazine had a section devoted entirely to cassette-only releases. Then there is C-86, yeah? So hats off to the cassette tape. There was a lot to love about Hustle & Flow, but the best part of the movie is when DJay slides that cassette across the table to Skinny Black.
  15. So far in this thread I have to say that Bandwagonesque is the single best record mentioned. Sounds as glorious today as it did then. Granted, back then it had to fight with Nevermind for time in the tape deck of my Corolla, but it held it's own in every way. ..and a few more also-rans from '91: Screaming Trees, Uncle Anesthesia - still a couple of years out from their biggest commercial success on the Singles soundtrack...UA was their first major label release and although they were on the way to doing so, they hadn't yet stripped out the swirling psychedelic edge that permeated their first few records. So it's a transitional record of sorts, from what I considered then (and pretty much still do) to be the finest non-grunge rock band of the grunge era. Chickasaw Mud Puppies 8-track Stomp - Last (of two) records by the Athens,Ga based duo that had close associations with the REM camp. Performed an extremely lof-i greasy Southern blues on many home-made intruments. Recently took back up and have been performing here and there for most of this year. The Feelies, Time For A Witness - The one album they recorded that sounded like they did when they played live. In short, it rocked. They were at the peak of their powers as a band. But The Feelies never did fit in any movement or scene and once again their record was ignored, even among "music" people who were looking to Seattle and to hip-hop for all their music (and I include myself in the category).
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