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Is the Best Hard-Rock Record of 2008 Already Here? PDF Print E-mail
Music - Music News
Written by John M. James   
Wednesday, 23 January 2008 02:14

Hermano - Into the Exam Room An unusual CD side project built around John Garcia of Kyuss is the hard-rock record to beat in 2008. Call it sludgy, greasy, or stoner suburban, but thank Zeus for the decidedly electric stomp yard of Hermano's Into the Exam Room, a perfect fantasy soundtrack for Thor and Loki to throw down to in a Ralph Bakshi animated ballet. Formed in 1999 with members of Supafuzz and Disengage, the band's Regain Records release is a hair-raising psychedelic dream, a real headbanger awash in the earthy musk of Eddie Hazel, Slash, Black Sabbath, Warrior Soul, Alice in Chains, Zodiac Mindwarp, and the Butthole Surfers.

moe Invites Fans to Participate on Tour PDF Print E-mail
Music - Music News
Written by John M. James   
Wednesday, 16 January 2008 02:13

moe - Sticks & Stones Next week Fatboy Records releases Sticks & Stones from moe, but devoted fans have been pre-ordering the disc online for an interesting bonus adventure. Co-produced with jam-band star-maker John Siket, the album features the song "Raise a Glass" - set to fade out the night in the encore set of the band's current tour through May. Pre-orders through the band's Web site feature a special "backstage" laminate that gains the buyer access to be part of the live show, joining the band as the chorus for the song.

New-Wave Comp Does Justice PDF Print E-mail
Music - Music News
Written by John M. James   
Wednesday, 09 January 2008 02:09

Disco Not DiscoIf your modern-day boogie leans deep into the heart-pumping grooves of Justice, LCD Soundsystem, Electric Six, The Rapture, The Teddybears, or Hot Hot Heat, take a little time-traveling trip next week and discover the roots on Strut Records' fantastic new-wave compilation Disco Not Disco. Opening with Vivien Goldman's classic "Launderette," the dub rumble is a perfect moment in time, built on a bass line by George Oban of Aswad with guest alchemists Robert Wyatt, On-U-Sound's Adrian Sherwood, and Steve Beresford of the Flying Lizards. Crazy about that roller-coaster bass shimmy? Long before riot-grrrl made its mark, the girlfriends of the up-and-coming Mekons pulled together to form the seminal Delta 5, represented here with the wickedly anti-posh "Mind Your Own Business," utilizing two bass guitars and plenty of mad moxie. And it just keeps getting better, flowing into a 12-inch edit of Shriekback's "My Spine Is the Bassline" from 1982, a sweaty club favorite featuring XTC's Barry Andrews and Gang of Four bassist Dave Allen. America is represented in a handful of nice picks: "Sharevari" from A Number of Names, "Contort Yourself" from New York City's no-wave saxophone prince James Chance & The Blacks, and Bill Laswell's Material collective and its "dance version" of "Lose Control," featuring Chic drummer Tony Thompson. The 14-track CD features extensive liner notes by historian Bill Brewster, author of the terrific book Last Night a DJ Saved My Life.

In Rainbows Gets a More-Conventional Release PDF Print E-mail
Music - Music News
Written by John M. James   
Wednesday, 02 January 2008 02:17

Radiohead - In Rainbows The grand experiment that rocked the music industry in October comes full circle this week, as Radiohead issues the physical version of its acclaimed In Rainbows across the planet on a variety of record labels. Issued here December 31 on the ATO Records imprint as a standard CD, the project is also available in an import-only "special edition disc box" featuring a two-LP vinyl set, a bonus CD, elaborate artwork, and photos in a hardback book and slipcase. For those who coughed up whatever they thought was fair for the album as a download, DJ/producer Ampline is offering up a tasty treat next week in Rainayz Remixes - a download of In Rainbows remixes available free if you prove with your e-mail receipt that you participated in the groundbreaking "pay what you like" online release.

Beatles Books Recall Pop’s Golden Age PDF Print E-mail
Music - Music News
Written by John M. James   
Wednesday, 19 December 2007 02:15

Yesterday With so many recent pop albums offering up only one or two decent, memorable songs and top-selling artists taking years upon years between mediocre releases, it's no surprise that music continues to slide into nothing more than computer files shared between MP3 players, personal computers, and 10-cent blank CDs. Not to sound like a crusty ol' curmudgeon, but sheeeee-it, I can feel my cerebellum shake when I think that over the course of 28 months, from August of 1965 to November of 1967, the Beatles released Help!, Rubber Soul, Revolver, Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band, and Magical Mystery Tour. Imagine my joy, when my teenage son's pals' Christmas wish lists are yearning for "real" copies of The White Album or gift certificates to buy "classic" used vinyl LPs at the ever-dwindling local record store. Wanna save American youth? Pick up any working turntables you might come across at yard sales, and place them at the feet of the next generation.

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