What are you listening to right now?

This is for all non-EC or peripheral-EC topics. We all know how much we love talking about 'The Man' but sometimes we have other interests.
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bambooneedle
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Re: What are you listening to right now?

Postby bambooneedle » Wed Aug 13, 2014 9:45 pm

The Dead Daisies - selftitled album

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Jack of All Parades
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Re: What are you listening to right now?

Postby Jack of All Parades » Tue Aug 26, 2014 10:08 am

I may well have purchased my favorite album of 2014 yesterday during a Rhino run up to New Paltz and Rhino Records[as well as the good news that they may open a shop right here in my town, Beacon]. It is the new one[6 already] "Brill Bruisers" by the New Pornographers. The title and title song kind of tell you all you need to know about this record- it is chock full of engaging, bubbly, harmonies and musical sounds with the synth/piano mixes finally restored to the front of the record while at the same time it has a hint of violence about it like this music has the potential to leap from the speakers and at times draw blood and reign down blows upon your inner ear and your solar plexus. AC Newman has written all the tunes and by the sound of them he has awoken from his self imposed quiescence as experienced on his last solo record and the previous two Pornographers records and now he seems to be ready to take on the world musically, yet again. The song "Backstairs" epitomizes this new found zest and it is the first full fledged rocker in this band's ouvre.

There is only one clunker on the 13 song set and that is the wan "Wide Eyes". Otherwise this is a full on communal effort where everybody in the band has brought their strengths. Songs like "Champions of Red Wine", "War on the East Coast", Dancehall Domine" and "You Tell Me Where" explode out of the speakers with a vim and vigor and full on sonic richness that all good 'pop' should supply. This is my favorite record by this band and it is a full blown aural antidote to a rather dull summer and music year to date.

Have a listen to the title tune and hear for yourself:

http://youtu.be/agoqFp95hRY
"....there's a merry song that starts in 'I' and ends in 'You', as many famous pop songs do....'

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Re: What are you listening to right now?

Postby Jack of All Parades » Wed Sep 03, 2014 9:36 am

I am most impressed by the latest album from my niece's band, Tuba Skinny, "Owl Call Blues". They have developed into a first rate band and arguably could be said to be one of the current musical treasures of New Orleans. This is the title tune and my niece, the cornet player, Shaye Cohn, wrote the beguiling melody, and her band mate, Erica Lewis, the singer wrote the words. I was fortunate to be at this performance at the Ogden Museum of Contemporary Southern Art in New Orleans this past Spring. Have a listen:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g7Lp7k0TrXw
"....there's a merry song that starts in 'I' and ends in 'You', as many famous pop songs do....'

ice nine
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Re: What are you listening to right now?

Postby ice nine » Tue Sep 09, 2014 4:37 pm

Very nice. Preservation Hall, here they come.
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Re: What are you listening to right now?

Postby invisible Pole » Thu Sep 11, 2014 12:19 pm

Enjoying the new album from Ben Watt (probably better known as being one half of the duo Everything but the Girl).
The album's called Hendra, and it's an excellent collection of quiet (mostly), intimate, contemplative songs.
Give it a try.

And here is the live version of the title track. Ben Watt with Bernard Butler (ex-Suede)

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Re: What are you listening to right now?

Postby Poor Deportee » Fri Sep 12, 2014 9:37 pm

I'm listening to the new U2 album thrust upon my computer by the good people at iTunes. (This, of course, is the only way I and millions of others would bother with an album from a band that has basically been tired since All That You Can't Leave Behind). It seems solid enough...no new ideas, surprises, or obvious 'singles,' just a bunch of tolerably good tracks with some nice moments lyrically. I'm not sure why U2 decided to stop moving around and pushing themselves as they did from Achtung Baby to Pop, but I'm sure the bores who never really forgave them for it will be happy to hear the band treading water on this go. Perhaps further listenings will make me more charitable...
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Re: What are you listening to right now?

Postby Jack of All Parades » Sat Sep 13, 2014 8:58 am

Ugh- like you lost major interest in this band awhile ago- they seem to be hanging on to hang on.
"....there's a merry song that starts in 'I' and ends in 'You', as many famous pop songs do....'

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Re: What are you listening to right now?

Postby Poor Deportee » Sat Sep 13, 2014 2:54 pm

Jack of All Parades wrote:Ugh- like you lost major interest in this band awhile ago- they seem to be hanging on to hang on.


Well, why was Achtung Baby so brilliant? Because the band had discovered a new sound and because Bono had developed new lyrical themes (moving away from abstract cause-mongering and sloganeering toward much more honest and penetrating examinations of psychology and relationships, and how these intersect with politics). The next couple of albums saw them continuing to push, Zooropa by its exploration of the tech-driven Euro 1990s - 'Babyface' constitutes as deviously catchy an examination of internet porn as I've ever heard, for instance - and Pop as a sort of spiritually-exhausted hangover. But I haven't heard them breaking any new ground since; if anything they've regressed to the old arena-filling anthemic histrionics. Now on the new record, the lyrics are serviceable and sometimes downright incisive, but thematically they're the same old thing. Musically, while I welcome the comparatively relaxed quality of Bono's singing here, things don't get interesting until the second half. 'Cedarwood Road' stands out, not because it's anything new, but because it manages to be a genuine rather than forced example of the excitement that this band at its best can generate; and 'The Troubles' sees them actually pushing themselves into distinctive terrain, closer to PJ Harvey's wonderful Let England Shake than the same tired U2 shtick. So on reflection I'd say it's an oddly back-loaded album with some strong moments...hard to despise but also hard to be excited about, no matter how hard Apple tries to propagandize.

I also find the whole exercise intriguing as a marketing project. First, the idea that album sales are so bad that bands may as well give away their music for free, presumably as a loss-leader in advance of the tours and T-shirts, is a telling one. And second, the thought that what was once the epitome of synergistic cool - the world's coolest brand (Apple) colliding with the world's coolest band (U2) - now looks decidedly bedraggled, with neither partner quite what they once were, yet maintaining the pretense with everything they've got. Apple should drop U2 next time if they don't want to look hopelessly turn-of-the-century.
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Re: What are you listening to right now?

Postby Jack of All Parades » Sun Sep 14, 2014 9:15 am

Here is what Sasha Frere Jones had to say about the record and Apple dumping into it our Itunes:

http://www.newyorker.com/culture/sasha- ... table-fire
"....there's a merry song that starts in 'I' and ends in 'You', as many famous pop songs do....'

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Re: What are you listening to right now?

Postby Poor Deportee » Sun Sep 14, 2014 10:35 am

Jack of All Parades wrote:Here is what Sasha Frere Jones had to say about the record and Apple dumping into it our Itunes:

http://www.newyorker.com/culture/sasha- ... table-fire


:lol: My favourite line in there is "The Apple Watch looks like a Happy Meal prize." :D :D

A relentlessly hostile review that has less to do with the music (when reviewers say things like "finally, band X sounds like the real band X," it's clear that they are imposing an intransigent template - imagine if someone said that of an EC album), and everything to do with the everyone-loves-us hubris of forcing your album on people. U2 has definitely tipped over into "uncool" with this move. The flip side is that more people are going to listen to their album than possibly would have done so otherwise.

"Cedarwood Road" really is a standout track. I listened to it about five times yesterday, The rest I can take or leave.

(It's interesting how often the phrase "the real U2" has come up in discussions around this record - sometimes arguing that the record is the "real" U2, sometimes the reverse. I really dislike the creativity-sucking imperiousness whereby fans try to box a band in like that).
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Re: What are you listening to right now?

Postby Poor Deportee » Sat Oct 04, 2014 11:28 am

Renegade Canadian hip-hop artist Buck 65's newest, "Neverlove." This finds the artist in a "Euro-pop/Bjork-ish" sort of mood, and also rummaging through the trauma of his own divorce. His gravelly-voiced raps encircle highly melodic, sometimes soaring choruses usually sung by sweet-toned female vocalists. The result is three or four self-indulgent embarrassments, and many tunes marked by a strange beauty. There are also hilarious moments such as "Super Pretty Naughty," a satire on contemporary pop, and the title track, which finds the pathetically defiant narrator celebrating himself as "Darth Vader" because he'll "eat a whole goddamned bag of cookies;" but for the most part the tone is better captured by "Ugly Bridge," a haunting song about a suicidal man who is condemned to stay alive because of the beauty he sees from the bridges from which he tries to jump. Note that I have the "deluxe" version (17 songs) and anyone considering this record should absolutely go for that rather than the compromised 12-track non-deluxe release, marred as it is by song choices that favour the aforementioned self-indulgent awfulness.

In the "strange beauty" category, try these:

"Danger and Play" http://buck65.com/buck/news/danger-and-play/
"Roses in the Rain" http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YJY2dt8B-vY
"Fairy Tales" https://soundcloud.com/buck65/fairytales


And in the excruciating category:

"Only War" https://soundcloud.com/buck65/only-war-feat-tiger-rosa

Fortunately, the album's very worst, agonizingly awful moments are concentrated in a dismal triptych ("Only War," "Baby Blanket," and "Heart of Stone") in its first half. Easily skipped. I'm going to enjoy sifting through the many riches found on the rest of this record over the next little while.
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Re: What are you listening to right now?

Postby Jack of All Parades » Sun Oct 05, 2014 8:19 am

First- I do not have the record yet. But that will be rectified. I have been following with pleasure his previews on his blog posts. Over the years since you introduced his music to me I have seen an artist grow. His rhymes are as natural and unforced and muscular as any halfway decent poet and his sense of 'time' and rhythm is impeccable. His verse pulses with thought and usually his imagery is never stale nor trite. The destruction of his marriage has given him some potent material but unlike many of his peers he never veers towards the misogynistic but instead is smart enough to know that the blame for its end can be firmly placed on both parties. That he goes beyond a basic 'beat' and explores the subtler textures and shadings of electronic sounds is exhilarating. When he combines that with his own melodic ism I am in heaven. I am not a fan of rap-I remain so. This is music for my ears and mind.

You are so correct about the song "Ugly Bridge"- it is harrowing and it rightly verges on the power of a strong 'short story'.

I know I am hooked when I follow an artist. Buck's blog is consistently funny, human, never preachy and visually it often packs a punch, as well. His song lists never fail to entertain. There is a lot going on above the 49th these days.
"....there's a merry song that starts in 'I' and ends in 'You', as many famous pop songs do....'

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Re: What are you listening to right now?

Postby Poor Deportee » Sun Oct 05, 2014 11:49 am

Jack of All Parades wrote:First- I do not have the record yet. But that will be rectified. I have been following with pleasure his previews on his blog posts. Over the years since you introduced his music to me I have seen an artist grow. His rhymes are as natural and unforced and muscular as any halfway decent poet and his sense of 'time' and rhythm is impeccable. His verse pulses with thought and usually his imagery is never stale nor trite. The destruction of his marriage has given him some potent material but unlike many of his peers he never veers towards the misogynistic but instead is smart enough to know that the blame for its end can be firmly placed on both parties. That he goes beyond a basic 'beat' and explores the subtler textures and shadings of electronic sounds is exhilarating. When he combines that with his own melodic ism I am in heaven. I am not a fan of rap-I remain so. This is music for my ears and mind.

You are so correct about the song "Ugly Bridge"- it is harrowing and it rightly verges on the power of a strong 'short story'.

I know I am hooked when I follow an artist. Buck's blog is consistently funny, human, never preachy and visually it often packs a punch, as well. His song lists never fail to entertain. There is a lot going on above the 49th these days.


For the record, I'm no hip-hop aficionado either, any more than you'd expect a middle-class middle-aged suburban white guy weaned on the Holy Trinity of Dylan, The Beatles, and Elvis Costello to be. For years I could see the potential hip-hop as a form, but seldom heard anything that actually made good use of it; but when I stumbled across Buck 65 I realized that here was a guy who actually had things to say (rather than just singing about sex and money all the time) and the musical/intellectual chops to make it worth hearing. His album Talkin Honky Blues is still one of my all-time favourites. It's really a shame that nobody seems to be listening. But he keeps plugging away, putting together an adventurous and searching career regardless.

Like I say, though, be careful ONLY to get the "deluxe" version of this particular record...he (or his label) really made epic, Dylan-sized miscalculations about song choices on the "normal" release. (And incidentally, what is with these "deluxe" v.s. regular releases anyway? If all the songs can fit on a CD, why not just release the deluxe version? Once more, I fail to understand the economics of the music industry).
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Re: What are you listening to right now?

Postby Poor Deportee » Sat Nov 01, 2014 9:04 pm

More obscure Canadian content...Jenn Grant's new album Compostela. I just loved the predecessor to this record, which was called The Beautiful Wild and featured well-crafted songs framed by tastefully baroque production and winsome vocals that both delight and crack the heart. This effort is more slowly paced and atmospheric, with sadness running under its Hippy-New Age Waif surface. Still, it amounts to a very pleasant 40 minutes if you're in that sort of mood. Plenty of guest stars on here, including Ron Sexsmith and Buck 65. 'Hummingbird' strikes me as a standout. http://music.cbc.ca/#!/blogs/2014/10/Fi ... rack-guide
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Re: What are you listening to right now?

Postby Jack of All Parades » Wed Dec 17, 2014 10:40 am

Jazz in the cube today for the Holidays- spending time with "We'll Be Together Again- Gene Ammons and Sonny Stitt right now "A Pair of Red Pants". Outside of Al and Zoot, my favorite Tenor tandem and this one is sort of a nod to Al and Zoot and one of their signature songs "The Red Door":

http://www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct=j&q= ... 1339,d.cWc
"....there's a merry song that starts in 'I' and ends in 'You', as many famous pop songs do....'

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Re: What are you listening to right now?

Postby Jack of All Parades » Wed Dec 17, 2014 10:44 am

A big thank you to Poor Deportee for bringing this one to my attention- sounds not heard in over 3000 years- Stef Conners has imaginatively recreated this music and given it a re-voicing and it is worth hearing. Perhaps not climbing up the Billboard charts at this moment but I might have to re-think my 10 best musical experiences for the year....and find some room for this one.

http://www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct=j&q= ... 1339,d.cWc
"....there's a merry song that starts in 'I' and ends in 'You', as many famous pop songs do....'

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Re: What are you listening to right now?

Postby verbal gymnastics » Thu Dec 18, 2014 5:04 pm

Christmas in the heart - Bob Dylan

And loving it!
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Re: What are you listening to right now?

Postby Jack of All Parades » Fri Dec 19, 2014 10:19 am

verbal gymnastics wrote:Christmas in the heart - Bob Dylan

And loving it!


You are a masochist, VG- this coming from a 'completist' :wink:
"....there's a merry song that starts in 'I' and ends in 'You', as many famous pop songs do....'

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Re: What are you listening to right now?

Postby verbal gymnastics » Fri Dec 19, 2014 4:42 pm

:lol:

I'm just trying to picture the joy on Bob's face as he sings 'Here comes Santa Claus' :lol:

I must admit though, I listened to it in one go whilst driving through a village which had lots of houses lit up and it actually made me feel festive. Mrs VG has given me orders not to be a Christmas grump.
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Re: What are you listening to right now?

Postby Jack of All Parades » Sat Dec 20, 2014 8:42 am

8)

You, a 'grump'? Nah..... :shock:
"....there's a merry song that starts in 'I' and ends in 'You', as many famous pop songs do....'

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Re: What are you listening to right now?

Postby verbal gymnastics » Sat Dec 20, 2014 10:54 am

I'm only generally a Christmas grump. The rest of the year I'm ok. :lol:
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Re: What are you listening to right now?

Postby sulky lad » Sat Dec 20, 2014 1:31 pm

I'm only generally a Christmas grump. The rest of the year I'm ok.

"Until any female tries to push in front of you at a Costello gig. "
I have been known to dance to Bob's version of Must Be Santa holding the fromt legs of Seamus ( the lurcher collie) but my family all seem to think this constitutes animal cruelty - and I'm not sure if its the music or the dancing dog ? :roll:

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Re: What are you listening to right now?

Postby verbal gymnastics » Sun Dec 21, 2014 7:56 am

sulky lad wrote:
I'm only generally a Christmas grump. The rest of the year I'm ok.

"Until any female tries to push in front of you at a Costello gig."


True but there was a bit more to it than at that isolated incident. I didn't take too kindly to Bradwell Boy spilling red wine down the back of my leg either at the same gig...

sulky lad wrote:
I have been known to dance to Bob's version of Must Be Santa holding the fromt legs of Seamus ( the lurcher collie) but my family all seem to think this constitutes animal cruelty - and I'm not sure if its the music or the dancing dog ? :roll:


And you have the tenacity to comment about MY dancing. At least no animals are involved :lol:
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Re: What are you listening to right now?

Postby Jack of All Parades » Sun Dec 21, 2014 8:36 am

verbal gymnastics wrote:
sulky lad wrote:
I'm only generally a Christmas grump. The rest of the year I'm ok.

"Until any female tries to push in front of you at a Costello gig."


True but there was a bit more to it than at that isolated incident. I didn't take too kindly to Bradwell Boy spilling red wine down the back of my leg either at the same gig...

sulky lad wrote:
I have been known to dance to Bob's version of Must Be Santa holding the fromt legs of Seamus ( the lurcher collie) but my family all seem to think this constitutes animal cruelty - and I'm not sure if its the music or the dancing dog ? :roll:


And you have the tenacity to comment about MY dancing. At least no animals are involved :lol:


What is it about the holidays that brings out the 'best' in folks?...... :wink: Alcohol.......
"....there's a merry song that starts in 'I' and ends in 'You', as many famous pop songs do....'

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Re: What are you listening to right now?

Postby verbal gymnastics » Sun Dec 21, 2014 10:38 am

It's like the old joke

Q - What gets drunk at Christmas?
A - VG!
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