This Thursday on the ol’ East Village Radio show that I like to call Beyond Beyond is Beyond, I will be talking to the gold-throated ‘god of hellfire’ himself, the amazing Arthur Brown. As seen here, freaking the fuck out…
I will also be paying tribute to MAN‘s fantastic guitarist/vocalist/songwriter, Micky Jones, who just passed away on March 10th, losing the battle to a brain tumor that he had been fighting for years. Micky will live on for many through the fine, fine music that he leaves behind. R.I.P. Micky…and thank you for the jams.
Coincidentally, Esoteric Recordings also did the superb remastering job with the MAN catalog as well, so this Thursday will be Esoteric Fest on Beyond Beyond is Beyond. So listen live at noon eastern, Thursday, March 18th to East Village Radio and let’s celebrate jams together! Sound good?
All right, you’s guys, I’ve got opinions about albums and since everybody likes to show off their super-important and highly-refined musical tastes by way of year-end lists, I’ve decided to join everyone…like a sheep to slaughter. I’m gonna have some oldies which I’ve just been turned onto in 2008 sprinkled in there too, so please don’t be alarmed that I don’t only listen to new music. In fact, it’s not healthy to only listen to new music.
After mine, you have to show me yours though…as creepy as that sounds. So start thinking about everything you heard in this last great year of our unruly despot’s reign, and be ready to list ‘em by the time you finish looking at mine.
In no particular order…
Okay, yes, they are friends but this album is truly original and stands out in a sea of indie-rock music that is becoming more and more boring. Hooks abound, beautiful harmonies, and amazing arrangements…all with a good sense of humor too.
Here’s an album I was all over when I got an advance copy. It’s totally trippy and neo-psychedelic and totally up my alley. Here’s me singing it’s praises last January…lalala. The backlash is already present but isn’t it always there for bands who get any kind of recognition for actually being good?! They sounded great at a super-packed McCarren Park Pool this past summer too! I look forward to a second album from these cats.
Here’s another one that I got an advance of and I picked it for my year-end list last year even though it came out in 2008. Trippy , heavy, ter’riff’ic! These guys have a great loud live show too. On the album, “Wucan” will hypnotize you…and live, “Wucan” will bewitch your skull. You’ve been warned!
(Anyone get the ‘pickin’ pockets’ reference?)
Well, yesterday was Brooklyn’s famous Atlantic Antic street festival, the absolute best of all the New York street festivals because it’s massive, it’s the last gasp of organized outdoor fun before the cold weather kicks in, there’s live music, the food is amazing, there are plenty of adult beverages to enjoy, and it’s in Brooklyn! And, for me, it’s right outside my apartment door.
I didn’t get out there till about 3:30 because I was nursing a pretty hefty hangover from a late Saturday night, but quickly grabbed myself a bloody mary and a yummy Vietnamese sandwich and was on the up and up. I met up with a couple friends and ran into some others, but mainly spent the next couple of hours first with Red David and then just with my hazy hangover-headed self.
It was really nice to see all the Obama frenzy at the Antic this year. Everywhere I looked were people of different races, colors, religions, sexes, sexual preferences, musical tastes, and ice cream flavor preferences banding together in support of positivity, hope, and America’s future. You could get your picture taken with a life-size cutout of Barack, you could order an organic Obama burger, and even order Biden gelato. It reminded me of New Yorkers inate ability to see through bullshit, and it’s easy for us to see that there is only one presidential campaign right now which is running on truth and honesty…and it ain’t McCain/Palin.
Another highlight was walking by at the right time to watch a fantastic country rock band from west Jersey playing outside of Hank’s Saloon. I found that the band was called Citizens Band Radio, and these guys (and gal) know how to jam! It was cool seeing all types of people smiling and dancing to CBR’s music. Cheers to the band if they happen to stumble on this post!!! Keep up the good stuff!
And another highlight for me was scoring some new cheap vinyl! I got all of these for $1 each! And they’re all perfectly listenable. I’m listening to Fleetwood Mac’s cover of the Yardbirds’ “For Your Love” right now. Mystery To Me is a great album…I don’t think I even knew that the amazing song “Hypnotized” was done by the Mac. Here’s the full haul that I got for a total of $11…
I also, while I had the camera and records out, took some pics of the last couple vinyl scores I had over the last couple months. Click on through to see the others…
You might remember that I wrote a piece about the Welsh band, MAN, a few months ago when I was still a newbie to their music. Since then I have received some mind-blowing MAN albums, bursting with their eclectic blend of West Coast psychedelia, hard rock, blues, progressive rock, funk, Beatlesy harmonies, and top notch jamming. These albums have been beautifully remastered with excellent bonus material and packaging and new liner notes from one of the MAN legends himself, guitarist/singer/songwriter, Deke Leonard. The most recent reissues include the three albums, Back Into The Future, Slow Motion and Maximum Darkness.
I’ve got to say that these MAN reissues have been in very heavy rotation in my iTunes and iPod for the last couple months. I have gone from a complete ignorance of this band, not even having heard of them before 2008, to being converted to an unmitigated MAN fan by mid-2008. Why is MAN such a horribly overlooked band, you might ask? I’m really not sure, but my guesses are a) perhaps mismanagement (a la Moby Grape) and b) lack of radio hits. At least the Grateful Dead had “Truckin’” and “Casey Jones” But this isn’t necessarily mainstream music here either. This is music for music’s sake. Here’s my completely-biased account of the most recent set of MAN albums that have just been re-released on England’s Esoteric Recordings this summer.
Click on through for the juicy details…
All right, I noticed that a lot of blogs are doing their ‘best of 2008…so far’ lists about now since we’re half way through the year, so I’m gonna blindly follow suit. Well, maybe not so blindly, since I’m gonna allow you to share stuff that you got this year…but didn’t necessarily have to have come out this year. But it can be new too. Whatever you want, because Sh*t L*sts are all about YOU!
So my list is probably gonna be a mix of new and old, cuz that’s just where I’m at. Just click on through after the MGMT album pic below to see my list (which I’m starting to compile in my head as I write this), and then leave your list in comments.
Well, it’s been quite a week so far with Obama winning the Democratic nomination (go Barack!) and the passing of one of Rock’s true innovators and pioneers, Bo Diddley. Not to mention, the birthday of my lovely wife on Tuesday and our second wedding anniversary today! I am an extremely happy and lucky man.
And with the dreams of America’s regime change inching ever-closer to becoming reality, here’s my little photo tribute to the men and women in the Armed Forces who have been putting their lives on the line to protect our ways of life. Hopefully we’ll soon get someone in office who won’t risk their lives frivolously and as a means to support their owns’ greed. AND I couldn’t resist taking the pic when I saw these guys sitting at a table in Little Italy.
So here’s some stuff to check out…
Speaking of photos, check this out, it’s really cool but it may just jerk a tear or two.
Raconteurs on Conan.
There goes the neighborhood!
R.E.M. recently rocked “Ignoreland” for the first time.
Leaked Vampire Weekend demo performed by their keyboard player (and mastermind). Be sure to look at all the comments.
Oh yeah, more great Diddley on NPR’s Monitor Mix!
Shameless plug...it looks good if I get some clicks on my articles.
New MAN remasters. I’m completely addicted to this band now!
As a supplement to our most recent Best Band You’ve Never Heard In Your Life featuring the band, MAN, here’s a Muxtape MAN mix to get you fully turned on to MAN’s sound. Dig it this weekend, for it will soon expire. And report back on your findings. Happy Weekend!!!
Hey all, I just had another piece published over at Blog Critics blog and it looks good if I get some clicks over there…and some comments. So do me a favor and check out the piece over here (it’s the same as the piece posted below), and it’s about a really good band that I can’t believe I haven’t heard until 2008! It just goes to show, there’s always music out there perfectly suited to your tastes just waiting to be discovered, so go find it!
The Welsh band, MAN, is certainly one of the Best Bands You’ve Never Heard In Your Life. Much like their Welsh peer band, Budgie, MAN has managed to have a loyal cult following since the ‘70’s, but just never was able to break through to major radio hit success like their fellow Welsh band, Badfinger. But then again, if you’re familiar with the fate of Badfinger (suicides of 2 of their primary members), MAN is probably not envious. In fact, MAN was a band that seemed to embrace the underground spirit of their music.
Radio hits or not, they certainly can hold their heads high, as they’ve left behind some of the most interesting rock music of the 70’s… and that’s saying a lot! Although mostly remembered as a progressive rock band, MAN did progressive in a way that was completely original from most other progressive bands, blending together the best elements of psychedelia, blues, vocal harmony, and West-coast style jam-driven rock and roll. Very much in line with such opinion-polarizing counter-culture bands The Grateful Dead and even Phish, MAN were praised for their live shows, which were never the same twice. But MAN’s jamming was less loose and laid-back than the Dead and a bit more gritty, thereby actually sharing more an affinity with Phish, especially in their use of the occasional silly lyric…“I like to eat bananas, because they got no bones…I like marijuana, ‘cause it gets me stoned” (from their live show staple, ‘Bananas’).