Book Offers a Rock-and-Roll Grab Bag Print
Music - Music News
Written by John M. James   
Wednesday, 22 August 2007 02:30

The Penny Ante Book The second edition of the Penny Ante Book is a beautifully twisted art jam that feels like finding cryptic love letters at the foot of a high-school locker, smudged with the tears and ballpoint-pen teen angst of a Breakfast Club detention. Published by the Penny-Ante Press division of Gifted Children Records, the 288 pages are peppered with rock-and-roll flotsam and jetsam, from an essay about the real Darby Crash by Alice Bag to a tour diary by Smog's Bill Callahan. Other highlights include a short story by Lene Lovich, Bonnie Prince Billy poster artwork by Stacie Willoughby, a collage by Simeon Coxe of Silver Apples, a reflection on the Welsh band Man by Ptolemaic Terrascope founding editor Phil McMullen, and six pages of art by Winston Smith, best known for his subversive cut-and-paste work for the Dead Kennedys.

I can't imagine anyone having lived a more entertaining life than Alice Cooper. From the grandchild of an evangelist to the bogeyman that slipped in the stream between Screaming Jay Hawkins and Marilyn Manson, the former hard-drinking shock rocker tells his true life story in Alice Cooper: Golf Monster, on the Crown imprint. Trading the bottle for a beautiful golf swing and a happy marriage as his buzz of choice, the book's interplaying lessons about life and golf make this the rockin'-est inspirational book yet. From the real truth about his chicken "execution" incident and hotel heroics with Janis Joplin to the Wild West days of the Sunset Strip and anecdotes of Jimi Hendrix, Frank Zappa, Liberace, Mae West, and Vincent Price, Cooper's wild ride in the public eye is a humble, often sweet reflection from behind the mascara.


Television Alert:


The Tonight Show with Jay Leno welcomes Suzanne Vega tonight and Stephen Stills on Thursday; The Late Show with David Letterman boasts Velvet Revolver this evening and Feist on Monday; Late Night with Conan O'Brien hosts Okkervil River on Monday overnight; The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson snaps up The Clicks on Thursday overnight; Last Call with Carson Daly presents Lily Allen on Thursday and Black Light Burns on Friday overnight; and The Henry Rollins Show on IFC features musical guest is Duke Spirit this weekend.


New Releases Coming Tuesday, August 28:


Aesop Rock - None Shall Pass (Definitive Jux) with guests El-P, Cage, Rob Sonic, and the Mountain Goats' John Darnielle

Paul Anka - Classic Songs, My Way (Decca) covers collection, putting his smooth spin on Bob Seger's "Against the Wind," Foreigner's "Waiting for a Girl Like You," and Duran Duran's "Ordinary World"

Avagami - Metagami (Lens Records) infectiously sly, theatric rock with a kinky new-wave beat

Collective Soul - Afterwords (El Music Group) selling whatever soul they had in this exclusive retail arrangement with Target

Cro-Mags - Final Quarrel: Live at CBGB 2001 (MVD Visual) DVD of the band's last show, with a bonus tour of the club by bassist Harley Flannigan

Dexter - music from the television series (Milan) Latin and Cuban grooves from the Showtime serial-killer thriller

Ecomiast - Ecomiast (Lens Records) six new icy-cold experimental drones from the "dark ambient" duo from Boulder, Colorado

Fior Fiero - The Satellite (Auger Down) four-song CD EP from former members of Dark Side of the Cop

Ben Harper & the Innocent Criminals - Lifeline (Capitol) recorded recently in one week in Paris

The Holloways - So This Is Great Britain? (TVT) bouncy UK quartet with nods to Madness and the Undertones

Horse the Band - A Natural Death (Koch) hot off a tour with Wes Borland's Black Light Burns, the disc's cover art is from an original six-foot-long wooden composition by Los Angeles artist Billygoat

The Howling Hex - XI (Drag City) squawking, zesty lost abandon led by Royal Trux's Neil Michael Hagerty

Evelyn "Champagne" King - Open Book (Jaggo) all new from the disco diva

Kula Shaker - StrangeFolk (StrangeFolk) their first new music in six years

The Last Goodnight - Poison Kiss (Virgin) radio-friendly major-label debut of sweeping pop, featuring the single "Pictures of You"

Liars - Liars (Mute) also available on white-vinyl LP

Lyle Lovett & His Large Band - It's Not Big It's Large (Lost Highway) also available in a deluxe edition with a bonus DVD

Lene Lovich - Live from New York at Studio 54 (MVD Visual) DVD filmed in 1981, featuring Thomas Dolby on synthesizer

The Modern Lovers - The Modern Lovers (Castle) expanded reissue of this Beserkley Records release from 1976, with eight bonus tracks and new liner notes

New Young Pony Club - Fantastic Playrooms (Modular) domestic release of this UK hit recently nominated for the Mercury Prize

Northern State - Can I Keep This Pen? (Ipecac) with two tracks produced by Adrock of the Beastie Boys, and guest Kaki King's lap-steel guitar on "Fall Apart," my pick of the week is the third album from NYC's sassy, strutting trio of funky fems dropping suckers left and right

Prinzhorn Dance School - Prinzhorn Dance School (DFA/Astralwerks) boy/girl duo from England

The Real Tuesday Weld - The London Book of the Dead (Six Degrees) cabaret cool incorporating poetry by William Blake and Cole Porter's "I Get a Kick Out of You"

Scorpions - Humanity: Hour 1 (New Door) with guest vocalist Billy Corgan on "The Cross"

Brandi Shearer - Close to Dark (Amoeba Records) featuring a cover of Jeannie C. Riley's "Oh, Singer" from 1971

Sly & the Family Stone - Greatest Hits (Epic Legacy) wrapping up the label's recent 40th-anniversary expanded-reissue campaign of each of the band's albums

Super Furry Animals - Hey Venus (Rough Trade) coinciding with the album's worldwide digital release, this special vinyl edition is an early gift to purists, as the CD won't be out until January

Tangerine Dream - Madcap's Flaming Duty (MVD Audio) all new, in dedication to Pink Floyd's Syd Barrett

Jacky Terrasson - Mirror (Blue Note) new solo-piano originals, standards, and a cover of Carole King's "You've Got a Friend"

Johnny Thunders - Who's Been Talking? (MVD Visual) DVD filmed in Japan in 1191 with the Odd Balls

VHS or Beta - Bring on the Comets (Astralwerks) on tour now with guitarist Mike McGill

Wattstax - original motion picture soundtrack (Stax) expanded reissue of this concert film from 1971, featuring Isaac Hayes, Albert King, Richard Pryor, and more

Kathryn Williams - Leave to Remain (Cheap Lullaby) quiet, rainy-day folk gently waking up with the dew, lifted by a mini-orchestra of woodwinds and strings

various artists - Guilt by Association (Engine Room Recordings) crazy tribute compilation featuring Luna covering Paula Abdul, The Mooney Suzuki slipping into some Cher, and Superchunk releasing its inner Destiny's Child

various artists - Home Schooled: The ABCs of Kid Soul (Numero Group) 17 rare tracks of pure soul from the 1970s, as aspiring youngsters dreamed of becoming the next Michael

various artists - World Hits (Putumayo) featuring Youssou N'Dour & Neneh Cherry's "7 Seconds" and the Peter Tosh & Mick Jagger duet cover of The Temptations' "(You Gotta Walk) Don't Look Back"

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