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Vinyl Vlog 454
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The Full Counts The fact of the matter (as inconvenient as it may be) is that not every record is a work of genius and not every band is made up of earthbound gods; sometimes the band is a job for those in it, and the music they make simply makes the bandmembers and their fans happy. That claim is not made as an indictment of those aforementioned bands, the music they’ve made or their fans – it’s just a...

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Tuesday, 20 October 2020
Vinyl Vlog 453
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A deeper look at the grooves pressed into the Floor It! 2LP by the Texas Gentlemen. It’s funny to think about how much the Texas Gentlemen have changed since first appearing with the release of Texas Jelly in 2018. Just two years ago, the Texas Gents arrived sporting the tightest sound but it was coupled with a design which let the album’s shape develop as it played. The end results turned out to be a mercurial work of art which...

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Wednesday, 14 October 2020
Vinyl Vlog 452
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A deeper look at the grooves pressed into Naked Giants’ The Shadow LP. While it’s not terribly uncommon for a band to make great creative changes in their sound and style unexpectedly throughout their career, the knowledge that such events can happen still doesn’t exactly explain the arc that Naked Giants have taken which ultimately brought the band to The Shadow – the group’s second full-length album for New West Records (third for the label). When the band started (in...

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Saturday, 10 October 2020
Vinyl Vlog 451
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Run the JewelsRTJ4 4XLP Deluxe Edition + Instrumentalsphoto: turntablelab.com Is there any hope left for the youth? In a year filled with turmoil, the stakes have never been higher. If there ever was a time to educate ourselves it’s now. But, what’s the song of the summer? WAP. Meanwhile, Run the Jewels have released the smartest album of the year and it’s not getting anywhere near the attention it should. There was a period in the mid-2000s where I almost...

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Wednesday, 07 October 2020
Vinyl Vlog 450
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A deeper look at the grooves pressed into the Crash Test Kid LP by Sammy Brue. After releasing a debut album which, while obviously ambitious, ultimately yielded results which were “just okay” followed by an EP that revealed a greater-than-average Blind Melon influence, Sammy Brue clearly upped his dose of Fuckitol, just cut loose and bravely elected to just have fun when it came to making Crash Test Kid. Through the eleven cuts on his sophomore LP, Brue lets each...

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Monday, 05 October 2020
Vinyl Vlog 449
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A deeper look at the grooves pressed into the Ghosts of West Virginia LP by Steve Earle and The Dukes. I confess that – for a variety of reasons, many of which are not rooted in rational or critical thinking – I have never really given Steve Earle a whole lot of my time. Some of that has to do with the politics and soapboxes, but suffice it to say that it has just never happened; I’ve never walked up...

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Thursday, 24 September 2020
Vinyl Vlog 448
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A deeper look at the grooves pressed into the Smell The Magic 12” reissue by L7. As a critic, I am not often given to crossing music with politics (unless, of course, I’m reviewing something like an album which has a political slant about it – like a Bob Dylan album or perhaps one by Rise Against) – but sometimes the moment just feels right – and listening to L7’s Smell The Magic EP inspires that sensation handily. “How could...

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Saturday, 19 September 2020
Vinyl Vlog 447
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BeckColors The man Beck Hansen is an enigma. The only thing you can predict about him is that he’ll do something completely unpredictable. His catalog is consistently all over the place in a way that there’s something for everyone if they explore it. Myself, I owe a huge debt of gratitude to Beck for being the first artist to expose me to good music. With Odelay, he taught me that if you put in the work, music can open new...

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Thursday, 10 September 2020
Vinyl Vlog 446
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A deeper look at the grooves pressed into the Rock Bottom Rhapsody LP by Pokey LaFarge. Listening to Pokey LaFarge’s ninth album (first for New West Records, and first I had ever heard) had a very strange effect on me. I knew the sound had me interested right away but, before even the A-side if the album had played through, I had already picked up my laptop and found out everything I could about the band. I looked up all...

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Thursday, 10 September 2020
The Classics 036
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A deeper look at the grooves pressed into the Fortieth Anniversary, Record Store Day 2017-released, limited edition 2LP reissue of Blank Generation by Richard Hell and the Voidoids. Not so very long ago, I was muddling through the stacks at my favorite record store when the sight of something surprising gave me pause. There, on a reasonably cool spring day, I found a copy of the Record Store Day reissue of Blank Generation by Richard Hell and the Voidoids, originally...

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Monday, 07 September 2020