Random Photo of the Day: "Green Safeway Pole w/ Rainbow"
Stereolab again crank out some new music this month in the form of 3 limited edition 7' singles/digital downloads. I DO love Stereolab and I refuse to ride the current backlash that says they are boring because they've gotten into a rut and keep repeating themselves over and over. To me, that's part of what makes them so great. The are "pop" in the Andy Warhol sense of plastic artificiality and repetetiveness. They have a sound and they stick with it, creating varations on the theme of analog earcandy. No-one would buy a Stereolab klezmer or metal album, now would they? They do what they do and (I think) they just keep getting better at it. Here is a highlight from the new batch of singles.
MP3 7.33MB, 320kbps, 44kHz
I've always loved this man.
The Cars were one of my first favorite bands, arriving in my awareness in 1980 along with Blondie and Devo. "Shake It Up" was the song form the album of the same name that I loved so much I played it over and over on my little portable tape player until the poor tape was literally worn out. Then, it was on to the self-titled debut and Candy-O, both of which quickly became as threadbare as Shake It Up. Now, I also have those albums on vinyl, CD and MP3 and I don't think I will ever tire of those classic tunes.
What was it about these Boston oddballs that turned me on at such a young age? They had a kind-of mystique, I think, looking gawky yet somehow so cool on the back of thier glamour-girl record sleeves. Their songwriting was tight and thier production immaculate, and sprinkled with just enough electronic experimentation to keep the intrigue. I can hear the influence of the early Cars records even today in all types of rock music.
Co-lead singer (RIP Ben Orr) Ric Ocasek was at least 8 feet tall and skinny as an eel, with a way messed-up face hiding under huge ugly sunglasses and an enormous spiky mullet. He always reminded me of some weird, tall bird, complete with beaky nose. However, we don't love Ric because of his good looks (how he scored supermodel Paulina Porizkova is one of the great mysteries of Rock), we love Ric because is one of the greatest, most inventive songwriters ever and has a tremenoulsy unique voice and outlook on the world.
Nextology, his new CD released today, his lyrics aren't quite as abstract as those early Cars records, but he still has his WTF moments, which is another reason we love him. Overall, the CD, like most of his other solo albums, has it's moments but probably won't create much of stir around here or anywhere. It's certainly a fine listen, but a mere it's glue is not sticky enough to hold interest for too long. Here is a highlight, enjoy:
MP3 5.74MB, 230kbps, 44kHz
Flexible Records accepting submissions for Halloween compilation
Get spooky this Halloween with Flexible Records ATTENTION ALL MUSICIANS NOISEMAKERS AND POETS: Flexible Records is currently soliciting music tracks, audio collages, and spoken word/poetry submissions for a Halloween-themed compilation to be made available for free mp3 download at www.flexiblerecords.com about a week or so before October 31. So, get to your nearest audio recording unit, dust off the pump organs and create something appropriately spooky. Or dig up something morose and morbid from your vast back catalog. Either way, Send us the completed mp3 ASAP at firstname.lastname@example.org for consideration.
Random Photo of the Day: "Lou's Evil Scary Eyes"
Siouxsie & The Banshees
School. Work. School. Work. (Bar). School. Work. No time to update blog...
This blog IS returning to daily, I SWEAR.
Anyhoo, having finally read the fantastic Siouxsie & The Banshees Authorized Biography from a few years back (and WHAT a read - far more rock star debauchery than I would have imagined!), I've been on a bit of a Siouxsie kick lately. It's always amazing to me that this woman is so under-recognized by the music press etc. for her groundbreaking contributions to rock music. Is this a sexist thing? In the male-dominated world of early Bristish Punk, this is a likely possibility, and that's rubbish. Whenever you see "time-capsule" type TV segments or magazines articles on early punk, they always mention the Pistols and the Clash, Ramones, etc. - all the boys, but Sioux rarely gathers a mention. Unlike most of the punk acts of the era, Sioxsie was a survivor, quickly adapting and inventing new genres along the way. Arguably, The Scream (1978) is the first goth album, born of the darker side of UK punk. It's shadow would inspire countless moody boys and girls to don black eyeliner and fry thier hair, many of them starting bands of thier own and taking the vibe in multiple directions. The Banshees sheer dark force and power on thier first five albums is so impressive, but yet a footnote in the Rock History books. For shame.
Here's a wonderful B-side from 1987 that had somehow managed to escape my radar until recently. It's a truly demented cover of The Modern Lovers' "She Cracked", with lyrics that, um, take on a whole new meaning when sung by Sioux. Delightfully odd...
MP3 4.29MB, 192kbps, 44kHz
Random Photo of the Day: "Jhanie's Bathroom Statue"
Am 04.10.2005 erscheint das Solo Album Electric Blue von Andy Bell. Als erste Single wird der Track “Crazy” (VÖ: 26.09.05) aus der neuen LP ausgekoppelt. Von “Crazy” wird es zwei unterschiedliche CD Singles, sowie eine DVD Single geben.Auf der offiziellen Seite von Andy Bell habt ihr die Möglichkeit in “Crazy” und “Love Oneself” reinzuhören. Die Einflüße von Erasure sind auch bei dem Soloprojekt nicht zu überhören. “Crazy” ist eine unbeschwerte Pop-Dance-Nummer in einem modernen Gewandt.
Das Album wird 14 Songs enthalten, wobei 2 von diesen jeweils im Duett mit Claudia Brücken (u.a. Propaganda) und Jake Shears (Scissor Sisters) eingesungen wurden.
MP3 5.38MB, 192kbps, 44kHz
Random Photo of the Day: "Po-Po in the Parking Lot"
Flexible Records Update: August 2005
Forgive me if my posts have been infrequent, I'll try to remedy that. It's just that the school season is upon us again and along with working FT, I haven't really had time or cash to explore new musics and restaurants, take pictures etc. But update I must, for the faerie spirit of Devendra calls... This little ditty had me shuffling around the house this morning, doing the psychedelic samba. I've been entranced by Devendra Banhart since his first CD of hissy home recordings emerged a few years back. Honestly, I never got into his next two simultaneously released records, though now I'm not sure why. Here, and on the rest of his fantastic new CD Cripple Crow, Banhart fills in his typically naked sound with a variety of eclectic musical flesh, creating charming little worlds that reveal more about themselves with each listen. It's at times like Syd had come back down instead and rejoined Pink Floyd around the time of Ummagumma, but with a vague glam twist. Here and there, this album resembles something we used to call rock-n-roll ("Chinese Children", where Devendra comes across like Marc Bolan doing a Lou Reed cover.), which is dramatic new territory for this typically fey folkie. Lyrically, Banhart tends to leaves his usual acid-damaged gibberish behind in favor of a more down to earth, accessible approach. Also, there are several wonderfully bouncy little Spanish numbers like today's selection...
MP3 6.34MB, 192kbps, 44kHz
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