Wednesday, February 28, 2007
J. Devenais: Gain Reduction
J.B. Raiteux: Southward
D. Robert: Black Trebor
P. Monnehaye: Gossit
from the Freesound library LP Crank 
The one time I bought a semi-expensive library record on eBay, it was this. Let's walk through the tracks:
Gain Reduction: This is my favorite. Great suspenseful flute tag perfect for a spy-themed T.V. show, plus the vibraphone groove in the middle rules.
Southward: eerie synth atmospherics
Black Trebor: What a bassline! Some of the percussion reminds me of Kraftwerk's Metal On Metal. I'm not bass-boosting this -- this is how it was mixed. "Trebor" is "Robert" backwards.
Gossit: I could see this as the theme music for a French dramedy.
In researching this post I re-discovered a premier source for library record rips: Monone's Library. Ironically, his last post of 1/19/07 promises that the next post will be this very record (Freesound Crank). Weird.
Tuesday, February 27, 2007
Black Flag: TV Party 
Burning Sensations: Pablo Picasso 
Inspired by a comment under the recent Jonathan Richman post, here are two songs from the Repo Man soundtrack.
Who didn't start looking at no-frills items differently after seeing Repo Man?
You like music? Listen to (and buy) this.
from the indispensable Sabbath, Bloody Sabbath
Drummer Bill Ward walks the fine line between funky and plodding on this track, staying just to the funk side of the line, with breathtaking results. Please note what Bill plays between 4:31 and 4:32 -- this moment alone immediately catapults him into the pantheon of rock legends.
Monday, February 26, 2007
Freddie King: Going Down and Gimme Some Lovin' 
from the essential Getting Ready...
It's hard to believe that Going Down is not a traditional blues that has existed since the Dawn of Time but in fact a song written by a human being named Don Nix in (I guess?) the year 1970. Freddie's original version here is such a masterpiece. This is without question the greatest half-time groove that any band has ever laid down.
The band's take on Gimme Some Lovin' is another half-time spectacular that was left off the original album but appeared on the 1989 CD reissue. Jam-packed with rhythmic tension, this is the second greatest half-time groove that any band has ever laid down.
Freddie King - electric guitar & vocals
Leon Russell - piano & guitar
Don Preston - guitar
Jon Gallie - organ
Donald "Duck" Dunn - electric bass (for more of Duck's work, see here)
Charles Blackwell - drums
Charles Myers - drums
produced by Leon Russell & Don Nix
recorded in October 1970 at CHESS STUDIOS, Chicago
Sunday, February 25, 2007
ULTIMATE ALBUM SIDE
Now Is The Happiest Time Of Your Life (side two) 
1. NONSENSE RAP (alien 1m. enregistre sur mini cassette a DEYA POETS 1977 reading)
2. LADY (dear lady ALLEN 5.29 victor/synthis)
3. I AM. (electrique guitarrrr GLISSANDO par daffyd 9:15 allen MEDITATION TELEPOTE* comment d'ecrire le NON-TEMPS?)
4. DEYA GODDESS (aloon 6.36 deya est un base d'energie pour la DEESSA DIANA)
*toutes les nuits a la BANANA MOON OBSERVATORY on medit a 9h de greenwich. Pour se contacter astralement il suffit d'etre avec NOUS
NOTE: The comments above are reproduced from the back of the album. The vinyl crackles settle down a lot after the "Nonsense Rap". I've gone ahead and ordered the CD, so until it arrives in 4 to 6 weeks enjoy the vinyl in all its perfect imperfection.
Saturday, February 24, 2007
Johnny Thunders: You Can't Put Your Arms Around a Memory 
Ronnie Spector: You Can't Put Your Arms Around a Memory 
Memory is Johnny Thunders'often-covered reworking of the New York Doll's Lonely Planet Boy.
I guess it's appropriate that his song about heroin addiction became the standard Johnny Thunders' tribute. I didn't know the circustances of his death until reading the wiki entry this morning. Pretty lame.
Ronnie Spector's fantastic version was produced by Joey Ramone (who also sings back-up vocals) for 1999's She Talks To Rainbows EP. In the liner notes she writes "Joey Ramone your unselfishness and friendship are 'cool'... It can all be said in about 1:55... Let it Rock".
Find more Ronnie Spector love in Emmett's post below.
And check out this killer video from Antenne 2's Les Enfant du Rock. I guess the bar was set pretty low for rock performances on French TV in the early 1980s.
Through the comments page I discovered that the always pertinent Richard Simon wrote a piece on Ronnie Spector's work with Joey Ramone and Keith Richards. Well worth the read! (Rockers Lining Up To Work With Ronnie Spector)
Buy So Alone here.
Buy She Talks To Rainbows here.
Friday, February 23, 2007
David Byrne: Leg Bells 
David Byrne: Big Business 
From The Catherine Wheel, David Byrne's 1981 ballet with Twyla Tharp.
The positive DVD review from the FT:
"When Twyla Tharp's 'The Catherine Wheel' was premiered on Broadway, it was described by Arlene Croce of The New Yorker as "a major event in our theatre", with "dancing of astonishing beauty and power". David Byrne, the lead singer/composer of Talking Heads, wrote the original score with its relentless, shifting rhythms and poetically unspecific lyrics, which perfectly complement the non-stop flow of dance and the incorporation of mime and everyday movement. His collaboration with Twyla Tharp was described by the New Yorker as "the meeting of two of America's most original minds". It has certainly produced an unforgettable dance and video experience. If ever a programme demanded to be viewed again and again with a video recorder, this is it !"
And the not-so-positive review in Ballet Magazine:
"In her autobiography (also called Push Comes to Shove) Twyla Tharp has little to say about The Catherine Wheel, except that it lost her a lot of money...
In 1981 this might have been called a high concept work. Unfortunately now it just seems dated, rather crude and tiresome in its seriousness. Perhaps one should not judge it harshly on the basis of this TV version: on screen it looks very cramped and some of the action is lost - it would surely be much more appealing on stage. This DVD is really for Tharp students only, though the last 15 minutes is enjoyable."
DAVID BYRNE -- vocals, bass, guitars, OBX, Primetime, Prophet, percussion, fierce and high guitars, vibes, horses, mini synthesizer, Prophet strings, kitchen metals,
JOHN CHERNOFF -- Gung gong, congas, galloping guitar
YOGI HORTON -- drums, concert toms
Adrian Belew -- steel drum guitar, guitars, floating guitars
John Cooksey -- drums (9)
Brian Eno -- bass, piano, Prophet scream
Sue Halloran -- vocals (10)
Jerry Harrison -- clavinet, large drum
Dolette McDonald -- vocals (7)
Steve Scales -- congas (9)
Twyla Tharp -- water pot (8)
Bernie Worrell -- mini moog, piano, clavinet
Julie Last -- engineer
Doug Bennett -- engineer
Butch Jones -- mixing engineer
Jim Feldman (for Resource Manhattan) -- design
Buy the album.
Thursday, February 22, 2007
Ronnie Spector: Try Some, Buy Some b/w Tandoori Chicken 
Try Some, Buy Some written by George Harrison
Orchestral Arrangement by J. Barham
Tandoori Chicken written by George Harrison & Phil Spector
Produced by Phil Spector & George Harrison
Weirdly enough, on the exact day that Mike posted the original version of a song from David Bowie's Reality LP, my 45 of the original version of another song from Bowie's Reality arrived in the mail. (In other words, we didn't plan this.)
Here are some notes on "Try Some, Buy Some" from Nicholas Pegg's The Complete David Bowie:
George Harrison originally wrote "Try Some, Buy Some" for the ex-Ronettes vocalist Ronnie Spector, whose version was released as a single in April 1971, inexplicably failing to chart on either side of the Atlantic. "At that time," Bowie recalled, "it was the only single by a solo artist that actually had all four Beatles on it. The Beatles had kind of disbanded, but they all loved Ronnie, and it was George Harrison producing it, so they all crept in at different times to put parts on it." Bowie had already paid tribute to the single many years earlier when he included it in the choice of records he played on BBC Radio 1's Star Special back in 1979. On that occasion he described Ronnie Spector's recording as "absolutely incredible", remarking that it "made me fall in love with the singer... my heart went straight out to her." He also recalled that the track was co-produced by the singer's then husband Phil Spector: "I may be wrong but I think it's the last single he ever made, because he was so depressed that it didn't do anything, that nobody bought it."
I don't have time right now to verify the historical accuracy of anything David says in the quotes above. Maybe somebody else can?
I do want to note that "Try Some, Buy Some" features some knotty harmonic/melodic content on the "Not a thing did I know..." part. I dig it, but it may also explain why this single was not a huge chart-buster...
The Modern Lovers: Pablo Picasso 
David Bowie: Pablo Picasso 
Recorded in 1972, but not released until after The Modern Lovers broke up, here are two versions of Jonathan Richman's composition. One is great and one is not so great, but it's the last day of our month, and we have the spare bandwidth... so here are both.
Jonathan Richman - Guitar and vox
Jerry Harrison - Keys
David Robinson - Drums
Ernie Brooks - Bass
Produced by John Cale
Sterling Campbell - Drums
Gerry Leonard - Guitar
Mark Plati - Bass
Mike Garson - Piano
Produced by Tony Visconti
Buy The Modern Lovers and David Bowie.
Wednesday, February 21, 2007
Chairmen Of The Board: Everything's Tuesday 
written by Ronald Dunbar, Edith Wayne*, and Daphne Dumas
This perfect slice of AM radio sunshine soul had me reaching for the rewind button on the subway yesterday (Tuesday). It's a great song to listen to twice in a row because it clocks in at 2:48. This went to #38 on the pop charts in September of '70, and made 770 WABC radio's Heavy Hundred Hits for the year (see above).
*Edith Wayne, I'm told, is a pseudonym for Eddie Holland (of Holland-Dozier-Holland).
Everything's Tuesday is available on dozens of compilations, but this box set is probably the classiest.
Yellow Magic Orchestra: Firecracker 
YMO's first single in Japan (1978) was released in the US a year later.
These are the instruments claimed to be on the album:
Moog III-C modular synthesizer
Korg PS1300 Polyphonic synth
ARP Odyssey monosynth
Oberheim Eight Voice polysynth w. Digital programmer
Fender Rhodes electric piano
Steinway grand piano
Korg VC-10 Vocoder
Fender Bass guitar (unknown if it's either the Precision or Jazz bass)
Roland MC-8 Microcomposer sequencer
How many can you hear on this track?
Also, my mind might be fried from studying for the PSAT, but this is my new favorite music video:
The neon bird throughout (5:37) reminds me a bit of the bird in Thom Yorke's amazing, depressing video from last year.
Tuesday, February 20, 2007
Astrud Gilberto: Brazilian Tapestry 
from Gilberto with Turrentine
Featuring Stanley Turrentine on tenor saxophone. Arranged by Eumir Deodato, adapted from "Mulher Rendeira" (a traditional Brazilian melody?)
I want to rule another cut from this album and do more in-depth commentary later, but for now, enjoy this exhilirating sonic adventure, and note the breakneck triangle part and Deodato's 5-star arrangement.
Also, can any Portuguese speakers in our audience tell me what this song is about?
P.S. To J.S., who just left a comment re: Martin Rushent: Good call on Van Gelder -- he's the engineer on this one!
Monday, February 19, 2007
Fleetwood Mac: Future Games and Show Me A Smile 
from Future Games.
The ongoing Mac attack over at Dream Chimney, combined with a raid of my girlfriend's parents' basement vinyl cache which yielded Future Games, Kiln House and Bob Welch's French Kiss, has led me to explore the mysterious uncharted region that is post-Peter Green/pre-Lindsey & Stevie Fleetwood Mac.
The title track, written and sung by Bob Welch, feels perfect for a cool summer night in a rustic Northern California abode. Show Me A Smile was written and sung by the great Christine McVie.
Engineered by Martin Rushent, who also engineered this as well as all the other classic mid-70's Shirley Bassey albums, before going on to produce the Stranglers. Martin Rushent is now the official engineer of Art Decade.
Sunday, February 18, 2007
Dame Shirley Bassey: Feel Like Makin' Love 
written by Gene McDaniels
from the album Good, Bad But Beautiful
I actually did not know this song until I heard Shirley's version. After momentary disappointment that this was not Shirley doing a Bad Company cover, I quickly became enthralled by the song, by Shirley's vocal, and by the delightful funky-muzak arrangement (check the bass on this). Shirley's vocal may conservatively be scored an 11 out of 10, with special notice given to her delivery of the line "seeing lovers do their thing."
available on CD through BGO records.
Friday, February 16, 2007
Trance remix (The Orb?): Wish You Were Here 
I'll leave this up as long as our bandwidth looks okay. There's been much debate over whether or not this is The Orb. My guess is it ain't. Someday someone will admit to this remix, and by then no one will care.
This is perfect late-night driving music for those who don't ordinarily drive.
Anyone who knows the real story, and the right date, please post in the comments.
from the classic One For The Road
I raided my mom's basement vinyl stash a few weekends ago and retrieved some of my old LPs, including this warhorse. I'm going to go out on a limb and say this is my favorite spoken intro to a live rock song ever, although when I was a little kid I thought Ray was saying "Rock fans will come, rock fans will go..." -- which isn't a very nice thing to be saying to an army of rock fans. Either way, the crowd reaction and the power chords kicking in are pure bliss. I had also forgotten the extent to which Dave channels Eddie on this solo. Good times!
recorded at The Barn, Rutgers University, New Brunswick, NJ, March 3, 1979
Thursday, February 15, 2007
from the legendary Miles Smiles
You know it's a good album when arguably your favorite two songs are the last two songs. I've read that Miles Smiles was recorded in one take, and it shows -- in a good way.
I only recently realized that the Eddie Harris who wrote F.J.D. is the same Eddie Harris who did this. Ace!
(Gingerbread Boy written by Jimmy Heath)
Wednesday, February 14, 2007
My freshman year college roommate created a contraption out of rocks, a dinner plate, wax, and a tuning fork that he believed -- honestly, fervidly -- would help him communicate with the divine. He held this controversial thesis for about a week before he dropped out of college due to psychological distress. During the time of construction of said contraption and the occasional vain attempt at use, he would often blast King Crimson’s debut album. It was, and will forever remain to me, the soundtrack to insanity.
Roy Harper: One Man Rock & Roll Band 
Just delving into Roy's catalogue now after hearing about him for years. Nice Roundabout-meets-A Day In The Life ending on this one.
Go to Roy's homepage for all your Roy Harper needs.
A note on the photo: In the background is Roy's producer Peter Jenner, who has some interesting ideas about how to deal with the whole "illegal downloading" issue.
Tuesday, February 13, 2007
"Aht uh mi hed, things are different"
Legend goes that Shuggie was asked to join the Stones after Mick Taylor left in '74. What parrallel universe would exist if Mr. Otis accepted the invite?
Here's the Rolling Stones seen with Billy Preston spiralling aht of control circa '75
Pepe Soup 
New Bell 
Time for a mini-Manu-fest!
Credits on the first two tracks:
Manu Dibango: Soprano & tenor saxes, piano, organ, vibes, marimba & vocals
Slim Pezin: Guitar
Jerry Malekany: Guitar
Small "Manu" Rodanet: Tumba
Harry Gatibelza: Organ
Philippe Neveu: Bass Guitar
Manfred Long: Bass Guitar
Lucien Dobat: Drums
Claude Vamur: Drums
Freedy N'Kounkou: Percussion
Produced by Rolande Le Couviour
Recorded at Sofrason Studio, Paris, France
Here's a sampling of Manu's offerings on CD and LP.
For music from other R&R HOF 2007 inductees:
Add The Message to your collection.
Monday, February 12, 2007
Eddie Fisher: Brain Strain 
from the classic Hot Lunch, on the Stang label
Eddie plays all the instruments on this, so it's safe to say that God Made Eddie Funky. One of the things I love, along with the great clavinet part, is the snare drum syncopation near the end. The snare hits come one 16th note after the 2 and the 4. It reminds me of Al Foster's work on Agharta and Pangaea.
See here for a bio of Eddie and here for Eddie's work on CD.
(Apologies for the image. Like Eddie, there are many things that I'd like to do, such as get my digital photography chops together so I could produce a better shot of this remarkable album cover.)
Sunday, February 11, 2007
Friday, February 09, 2007
Cibo Matto: Sugar Water (Acoustic) 
Cibo Matto: Sing This All Together 
Two songs from the genius that was Cibo Matto.
Vox: Miho Hatori
Piano: Yuka Honda
Sugar Water (Acoustic):
Bass: Sean Lennon
Percussion: Timo Ellis
Drums: Dougie Brown
Guitar: Marc Ribot (Must see him sometime.)
Sing This All Together:
(Jagger / Richards)
Bass and drums: Sean Lennon
Guitar: Timo Ellis
And Michel Gondry directed the video for the album version of Sugar Water.
Go buy this CD right now.
Jerry Garcia Band: Tears Of Rage 
written by Bob Dylan and Richard Manuel
recorded live at the Warfield Theatre, San Francisco, sometime in 1990
Listen to Jerry's solo on this. It's a good one, and I should know -- I've heard more than one of Jerry's guitar solos.
available on CD
written by Lennon/McCartney
from A Hard Day's Night
Like many of the early Beatles classics (She Loves You, From Me To You, etc.), this is a real John/Paul song. They both sing together through the whole song (after John's intro), and I like to imagine they wrote it together in the same room in one sitting (see photo above). Early Beatles rules.
Morrissey: Redondo Beach 
Continuing with the R&R HOF nonsense, this was the first original Patti Smith song you'd ever hear had picked up the record the day Horses was released, and hadn't previously heard anything from punk rock's poet laureate. (The first song on the album was not an original song, obviously. Rodondo Beach was the second.) Morrissey released his own version of the classic thirty years later.
The Van Halen installment is here.
The R.E.M. installment is here.
Thursday, February 08, 2007
Ned Doheny: Get It Up For Love 
from the album Hard Candy, produced by Steve Cropper
I first heard this in the DJ History mix from September '06, created by Citizen Kane. I had never heard tell of Ned before, but Internet searches have revealed that he is huge in Japan and (of course) with the Dream Chimneys.
Fun fact: Ned is a true descendant of the Los Angeles Dohenys, and was actually born on Doheny Drive (Ace!). Is Ned the grandson of this Ned Doheny who died in spectacular L.A.-noir fashion in 1929?
I've lifted this song from Kane's mix, which is why you hear other songs fading in and out at the beginning and end. But my Japanese remastered copies of Hard Candy and Prone are on their way, and you might want to pick them up yourself.
Wednesday, February 07, 2007
Procol Harum: A Salty Dog 
This song is dedicated "Wyrd, Wisconsin", a music blog that seemed very cool and then just disappeared off the face of the earth for some unknown reason. I first heard this song on one of Wyrd's podcasts this summer. So Wyrd, Wisconsin, wherever you are, this is to let you know that I dug the song and that your blogging was not in vain.
And yes, we're ripping the vinyl transfer, even though my copy isn't that great and I also have this in digital, because Wyrd's was a vinyl transfer, and because CD's are for landlubbers.
available on CD
Tuesday, February 06, 2007
featuring Mike "Fingers" Howlett on bass guitar and Pierre Moerlen on percussion
Great story behind this album: At a Gong gig in Cheltenham in 1975 Daevid refuses to go on stage, claiming a "wall of force" stands in his way. So he leaves the band and decamps with life-partner Gilli Smyth and her two children to the island of Majorca to recuperate and generally get his space together. There he falls in with a quintet of Catalan musicians calling themselves Euterpe, after the Greek God of Music. They record and mix Good Morning at Daevid's Majorcan pleasure palace on a 4 track Teac and 2 Revox's.
As for this track, featuring two guest Gongers (see above), I will let it speak for itself, except to add that when something is the bomb, it's the bomb, and this is the fucking Bomb.
Available on CD! But it will cost you a pretty penny.
Monday, February 05, 2007
R.E.M.: West of the Fields 
Continuing the R&R HOF series, this song is the last track on 1983's Murmur. This is R.E.M.'s small budget impression of a 2005 English dance band. I'm into it.
And rudolf55 considers it the 117th best R.E.M. song, which he ranks one above Letter Never Sent. I'd say he nailed that one.
Buy Murmur here.
Photograph by Laura Levine, who has a ton of class shots in her online archive located here.
Ed Bogas arrangement featuring Merl Saunders on keys: Scarborough Street Fair 
By request. For Jason and anyone else with nothing more than a passing interest.
Personally, I am partial to the Street Fair version. But maybe that's just because I rather enjoy street fairs. Rather.
Harpers Bizarre: Poly High 
taken from the Warner Bros. compilation Days Of Wine And Vinyl 
BLINDFOLD TEST: Someone who doesn't already know, tell me who wrote this song (without looking it up on the Internet).
Once you know, it's pretty obvious. See if you can guess.
Your reward will be eternal glory.
Also, can anyone identify the TV excerpt at the beginning? I have no idea what it is, and it's not explained in the liner notes.
Sunday, February 04, 2007
Friday, February 02, 2007
T La Rock & Jazzy Jay: It's Yours 
The Latin Rascals: It's Yours (megamix) [1985?]
The Latin Rascals: 98.7 KISS Mastermix Dance Party [March 16, 1985]
"People of the universe, this is yours." One of the hottest early rap records. Dig the minimalism, and note how DJ Jazzy Jay lives up to his moniker during the scratch break at the 1:03 mark.
From about 1984 to 1986 I listened to the 98.7 KISS and 107.5 WBLS Mastermix Dance Parties religiously, every Friday and Saturday night. The DJ on KISS was usually either DJ Red Alert or DJ Chuck Chillout, but then one night I flipped on the radio and heard the Latin Rascals. My brain exploded. These guys were doing something that sounded unreal, like science fiction. Then we found out it was done with reel-to-reel tape editing (!)
"It's Yours (megamix)" is actually an excerpt from a tape of one of the Rascals' broadcasts on KISS, probably from '85. The basic song sequence is:
Fat Boys: Human Beat Box>Fantasy 3: It's Your Rock>T La Rock: It's Yours>Kurtis Blow: A.J.
The "Mastermix Dance Party" is about 45 minutes from a tape of another Rascals show on 98.7, including MCA & Burzootie: "Drum Machine" and Malcolm McClaren: "Hobo Scratch", among many other highlights.
Here are the credits on the back of the 12" of It's Yours:
T La Rock--vocals
Vocals written by Special K, T La Rock
Beats programmed by Rick Rubin
Produced by Rick Rubin, a S.U.R.E. Shot Mix
Co-produced by Special K, Jazzy Jay
Edited by Weems
Cover art by Rick Rubin
Special thanks to: Ed Bahlman, Africa Bambaataa, Bobby Davis
Def Jam Recordings, 5 University Pl.
New York, N.Y. 10003, (212) 420-8666
and on the runout groove is etched:
Herbie Jr. (smiley face)(heart with arrow through it) Angie
"SURE DJ's MAKE IT FUNKY"
Thursday, February 01, 2007
The year is 1974. The following significant musical events happen in no particular order of importance:
• Cher files for divorce from Sonny Bono
• Mike from ArtDecade is born
• The Ramones form
• Abba wins the Eurovision song contest
• Canada’s Juno Awards name BTO the most promising group of the year
• And in the former Soviet Union, on May 17, Dimitri Shostakovich finishes his
15th String quartet, the final movement of which, “The Epilogue,” is posted.
Van Halen: Ain't Talkin' 'bout Love 
I haven't listened to Van Halen in a long time, and I am fairly certain I never owned Van Halen on anything but cassette. Until recently. Inspired by the coming Rock & Roll HOF 2007 induction ceremony, I bought a handful of used CDs, and will post a brief series of songs by this year's inductees. And yes, I do think it's a silly little institution. This song is the first in the series.
Somewhere, some bar will play Ain't Talkin' 'bout Love tonight and it will be okay for the crowd to dance because: 1) it's Van Halen, and even if their reunion tour this summer is going to finish a strong 5th in ticket sales behind a) The Police, b) Elton John, c) The Killers, and d) Disco Biscuits, they are still not that cool; and 2) the chorus of galvanic "hey"s at the end of the song negates all social inhibitions. Songs like this make me want to drive to Brewster, NY in the middle of a snow storm on a February evening.
And I just learned that Eddie Van Halen is actually Dutch by birth and shares a birthday with a friend of mine in Madrid.
Buy Van Halen here. If it's possible you don't already own them.
The choice photograph above is taken by Geraint Smith. Check out his site. His photos are beautiful.