REVIEWS

Vinyl Vlog 642
COLUMN

A deeper look at the grooves pressed into The Drowns’ Blacked Out LP. While the number of ways that a band may choose to change their sound in the name of refreshing it or updating it are almost innumerable, what The Drowns have done on Blacked Out is genuinely impressive. This time out, the band has left most of the punk and hardcore are forms that the band has been developing and refining over the last few years behind and...

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Wednesday, 27 March 2024
Son Henry – [Album]
REVIEWS

Son Henry & T. Rogers Band Grace (Twang House Records) In 2009, American blues musician and lap steel virtuoso Son Henry arrived at a music festival in Estonia with only his lap steel. The rest of his equipment was stuck at Heathrow Airport, where it remained for six months. He was rescued by T. Rogers band, “a group of mad Hungarians,” as he put it. They loaned him equipment and gave him stage time. A lifelong connection was established. Ten...

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Tuesday, 19 March 2024
Claudia Hoyser – [Album]
REVIEWS

Claudia Hoyser Red Lights Turning Green (GFI Music) Every now and then, an artist takes you by surprise. Who would expect the Aging Punk to love a Country singer? And not an alt-country artist, either; a pure, down-home Country artist. I am now officially a Claudia Hoyser fan. A local record store (Record Archive — if you’re ever in Rochester, NY) provides pizza and beer and free music every Wednesday. I often stop in to see what they have. Hoyser...

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Sunday, 12 March 2023
Neutral Milk Hotel – [Box Set]
REVIEWS

Neutral Milk Hotel Collected Works (Merge Records) I confess I never listened to Neutral Milk Hotel before. I knew it was considered one of the great alternative bands, but I never heard anything else that made me want to listen to them. There were moments I definitely felt I should check it out, wishing, as I do, to be well informed about music. But I never made the move. Until now. Offered the chance to review their Collected...

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Sunday, 12 March 2023
Iggy Pop – [Album]
REVIEWS

Iggy Pop Every Loser (Atlantic/Warner Bros.) I’m never sure what I’ll get when I get a new album by Iggy Pop. Usually, there’s some version of the standard Iggy — rocking hard, with some social criticism, and a ballad or two – but every now and then he throws us a curve ball; a Preliminaires or an Avenue B. With all of that said, Every Loser pretty standard for him. If there is a surprise here, it is that Iggy...

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Friday, 17 February 2023
Weyes Blood – [Album]
REVIEWS

Weyes Blood And In the Darkness, Hearts Aglow (Sub Pop Records) In her current incarnation as pop songstress, musician Weyes Blood may have produced the definitive post-Covid album. Sweet melodies, lush orchestration and a beautiful voice combine to express the relief and pleasure of passing through the crisis. The instrumentation is standard pop — piano, guitar, synthesizer washes, arranged into sweeping waves of music. Weyes Blood has claimed “church music” as a great influence on her work, which is a...

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Thursday, 02 February 2023
John Cale – Album
REVIEWS

John Cale Mercy (Domino) I will admit, with rock stars dropping all around us, listening to this CD made me a little nervous. It sounds like John Cale is reviewing his life, looking back with a critical eye and looking forward with trepidation. Initially, I found myself wondering if Mercy was to be another Blackstar, The Wind or You Want It Darker. Musically, however, this is a forward looking album – as Cale collaborates with a number of fresh musicians,...

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Friday, 20 January 2023
Anti-Flag – [Album]
REVIEWS

Anti-Flag Lies They Tell Our Children (Spinefarm) It might sound a little counter-intuitive but, throughout their career (which has run for thirty-five years now – as of this writing), Anti-Flag has always proven to be at their best when people have already counted the band out – that’s when they have something to prove and that’s when they shine. Most recently, the band shone after they’d finished their two-record contract with RCA and the band released The People or The...

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Monday, 09 January 2023
Lou Reed – [Album]
REVIEWS

Lou Reed Words and Music, May, 1965 (Light In The Attic) One question repeatedly comes up in writers’ groups, especially with beginning writers: “How do I copyright my work?” I resist the temptation to say, “Do you really think someone is going to steal your poetry?” and tell them, “Mail it to yourself.” As long as you don’t open the package, the postmark establishes that you wrote the enclosed material on or before that date. Lou Reed did that with...

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Tuesday, 08 November 2022
Vinyl Vlog 561
COLUMN

A deeper look at the grooves pressed into the LP+CD reissue of Live! by The Dils. While plenty of punk bands have been well exposed since the public became interested in learning about the early days of the L.A. punk scene (X’s catalogue has been reissued by Fat Possum Records, Porterhouse reissued (MIA) by The Germs and other labels have reissued titles by The Avengers, The Bags and The Runaways too), the truth is that giving all of the talent...

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Sunday, 21 August 2022