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Vinyl Vlog 477
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El-PCancer 4 Curephoto: turntablelab.com I remember the moment that the world of Hip Hop was opened to me. Years ago, I was interviewing Dillinger Four at the Trocadero in Philadelphia, talking to their bass player about music. He said something along the lines of mainstream rap being in a deplorable state; to the effect that standards and quality control didn’t exist anymore in his opinion. Lucky for me, I had a rap aficionado friend who immediately approved of this sentiment....

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Wednesday, 27 January 2021
Vinyl Vlog 476
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X Alphabetland LP (Fat Possum Records) Alphabetland was one of the most important records of 2020. Let me count the ways. For one it was, just plainly on the surface, a record that did many things and did them well. Compared to both rock and punk music it sounded fresh, yet undeniably familiar. It also managed to be both fun and urgent, and musically it was catchy as hell. Blame that on guitarist Billy Zoom’s rockabilly tendencies matched with the...

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Sunday, 24 January 2021
Vinyl Vlog 475
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A deeper look at the grooves pressed into the Rat-A-Tat-Tat LP by Dale Crover. Listening to Dale Crover’s second solo album apart from The Melvins is a funny/unique experience because, after having made music with the same band (well, “the same musical counterpart,” singer/guitarist Buzz Osborne, anyway) for so many decades, it’s hard to remove that sensibility from the music – or hard to remove it completely, anyway. As one listens to Rat-A-Tat-Tat, for example, it’s easy to imagine Buzz...

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Monday, 18 January 2021
Vinyl Vlog 474
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A deeper look at the grooves pressed into the 2LP From Elvis In Nashville set by Elvis Presley. Many detractors may (and have) claimed that the Seventies were a period of decline for Elvis Presley. Over a decade into his career, the singer had already scaled several mountains; Elvis had already broken through and helped to establish rock n’ roll as the dominant musical idiom of the twentieth century, had already written and recorded an enduring songbook of hits, had...

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Thursday, 14 January 2021
Vinyl Vlog 473
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A deeper look at the grooves pressed into the clear, colorless 2LP pressing of 5EPs by Dirty Projectors. From the very first instant I heard the music contained on 5EPs by Dirty Projectors, the clear and colorless 2LP set gave me pause. True, I had heard the group’s music before (the first album I heard was Swing Lo Magellan in 2012, and it really won me to the band’s banner), but 5EPs featured a sound so captivating that, the first...

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Thursday, 07 January 2021
Vinyl Vlog 472
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Johnny Peebucks & the Swingin’ Utters Boots ‘n Booze (comic book w/ 7” single) (Pirates Press Records) Whether it was intentional or not (and, given the multi-media-angled nature of this release, which combines a comic book with a 7” single, it may indeed be intentional), Pirates Press and the Swingin’ Utters have actually done something pretty surprising with Boots n Booze; while other bands (like NOFX, Butthole Surfers, The Replacements, Rancid and plenty of others) have embraced the fact that...

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Sunday, 03 January 2021
Vinyl Vlog 471
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Katy PerrySmile It used to be hard to find a bigger pop star than Katy Perry. Nowadays, it’s a little easier. At the height of her stardom, it was absolutely obvious what Perry’s appeal was: her music was fun at the most visceral level. It’s truly interesting to watch what has been happening to Katy Perry over the past several years. Sure, she never appealed to everyone, but the woman has solidified herself as a pop music heavy hitter ever...

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Saturday, 02 January 2021
Vinyl Vlog 470
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A deeper look at the grooves pressed into the Fat Possum reissue of the Catholic Boy LP by the Jim Carroll Band. Readers need to know that, first, I did not sleep on this review – the truth is that I’ve written and then started over with this review a multitude of times, but it has always stalled at one point of another, and caused...

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Wednesday, 30 December 2020
Vinyl Vlog 469
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El Camino: A Breaking Bad MovieOriginal SoundtrackDave Porter & Various Artists(Mondo Vinyl) Like many viewers, I started watching Breaking Bad because for obvious reasons: buzz, recommendations, and Netflix. However, it quickly becomes apparent what makes Breaking Bad stand out, and it’s mostly because unlike other shows, we get rewarded for the investment we put into the show. While other shows focus on plots of suspended disbelief, one-dimensional characters with unjustified behavior, cheap laughs, ridiculous plotlines, senseless...

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Wednesday, 23 December 2020
Vinyl Vlog 468
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A deeper look at the grooves pressed into the Existential Reckoning LP by Puscifer. Ever since Maynard James Keenan first appeared on the rock radar, the singer’s depth as a creative entity has never been questioned or debated. The singer has always been so prolific that his muse has required three bands to be contained and satisfied; Tool came first and accommodated the heavy/mathy/stoic root of the singer’s output, A Perfect Circle arrived next to satisfy the singer’s poppier, “rock...

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Friday, 11 December 2020