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Vinyl Vlog 497
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Aesop RockSpirit World Field Guide 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...

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Sunday, 25 April 2021
Vinyl Vlog 496
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A deeper look at the grooves pressed into the Head of the Household LP by Birthday Ass. I remember when I first started listening to indie rock, underground rock and other sorts of music which were a little left-of-center in nature, and it wasn’t always easy. In fact, it was often sort of a gamble; in the days before the internet, there were occasions when you didn’t know exactly what you were going to get, and you just sort of...

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Tuesday, 13 April 2021
Vinyl Vlog 495
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A deeper look at the grooves pressed into the Pretty Garbage LP by Come Closer. While it’s very easy for me to get excited about a new punk band that I’ve never heard before (I’ve been listening to a lot of punk, for a for a lot of years), running across something which makes me excited because I can’t immediately qualify it is instantly attractive because it’s obviously operating within a paradigm I recognize, but there’s something about it that...

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Sunday, 11 April 2021
Vinyl Vlog 494
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Mastodon Medium Rarities There’s a reason why Mastodon is currently one of the biggest metal bands that still matters. They don’t pack in stadiums, I know, but they’re not playing tiny venues either. They’re big enough to play all the late night shows (I’ve seen them on Letterman, Kimmel, and Fallon), and even occasionally do the oddball appearance (remember when they were on the Human Giant show?). Also, they have a sense of humor about themselves. These are all good...

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Tuesday, 06 April 2021
TV Party Tonight! #93
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Ghost in the Shell: 4K/Blu-Ray When speaking of classic Japanimation, the words Masamune Shirow and Ghost in the Shell are standards. And if they’re not, they should be, because Ghost in the Shell is one of my favorite movies. Adapted from the masterful mangas (read: Japanese comics) of the same name, Ghost in the Shell is one of those films that has been lingering in my mind ever since I saw it, which last was about 10 years ago. While...

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Sunday, 28 March 2021
Vinyl Vlog 493
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A deeper look at the grooves pressed into the Hum LP by Alain Johannes. It’s about time guitarist, songwriter, producer and engineer Alain Johannes got around to releasing another solo album (his solo debut, Spark, came out in 2010 and his sophomore album, Fragments and Wholes vol 1 came out in 2014 – so he’s due). Johannes’ career in the music business actually began in 1984 (with What Is This, the band he started with former Red Hot Chili Peppers...

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Saturday, 27 March 2021
Vinyl Vlog 492
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Scharpling & WursterRock, Rot, and Rule I mean it when I say that Tom Scharpling and Jon Wurster will go down in history as one of the great comedic duos of our time. Maybe the greatest. For those of you who are uninitiated, don’t feel bad because I didn’t know who they were a year ago either. But one thing is certain, if you get what they’re doing, you won’t be able to get enough. What these guys are good...

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Wednesday, 24 March 2021
Vinyl Vlog 491
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A deeper look at the grooves pressed into the Working With God LP by The Melvins. It has long gone overlooked and under-reported (maybe because they’re from Washington State, maybe because they first gained popular notice with the waves of alt-rock and grunge bands of the Nineties – there’s any number of possible explanations), but the fact is that the members of The Melvins are actually pretty funny guys. Each of them has a really good sense of humor. Each...

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Friday, 19 March 2021
Vinyl Vlog 490
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A deeper look at the grooves pressed into the Way Down in the Rust Bucket 4LP set by Neil Young and Crazy Horse. In the fifty-two years which have made up his career to date, Neil Young has been a lot of things – an activist, a fortune teller, an elder statesman, a folkie, a rock star, a filmmaker and other titles too – but he has never seemed to be lighthearted. The singer has been interested in making a...

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Thursday, 18 March 2021
Vinyl Vlog 489
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A deeper look at the grooves pressed into the 40th anniversary, 2LP reissue of Signing Off by UB40. Maybe it’s just an extension of the unapologetic non-conformist in me, but I have never been able to stop myself from being drawn into music which goes out of its way to challenge expectations and/or just endeavor to go against the grain, defiantly. I know that, at least occasionally, I turn an ear toward music which doesn’t make me feel comfortable, in...

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Sunday, 14 March 2021