Friday, April 27, 2007

LIFE IS GOOD....

I started my new job this week & so far I absolutely love it--manageable hours & workload, minimal travel, fun co-workers; it's great. One big benefit is the 9/80 work week, and I started on the "friday off" week. So it's friday morning & I'm typing away at Radio Bean, enjoying a pot of peppermint tea (to help digest the big breakfast I chowed down at Henry's) and listening to Vic Chesnutt covering Daniel Johnston's "Like a Monkey in a Zoo". It's a Happy Jay Day.

I'm also feeling a lot better because after a bout of insomnia, I finally got a good night's sleep--a REALLY good night's sleep. Jaime & I were supposed to meet up with JB for a show last night at the 1/2 Bar but I passed out on the couch at 6:30 (sorry JB!) and Jaime didn't have the heart to wake me up. So I slept straight through until 7:30 this morning! Nothing like a good 13-hr. semi-coma to recharge the ol' batteries.

Speaking of JB, The Le Duo & Spitting Out Teeth will be getting together to make some melodic noise on Sunday night. We plan to first become the Burlington area's first "Blogger Supergroup", with tentative plans to then invade Poland. We are accepting applications for fan club president, so be sure to get those resumes in order!

While I don't have the discipline right now to write a full album review, here a few of the albums I have been listening to lately:

EARTH, "Hibernaculum"


Some lovely metal-drone from a band that has apparently been around for quite awhile but I just heard of. I did a little research & found that the frontman of the group, Dylan Carlson, was actually Kurt Cobain's best friend and (for you trivia buffs) actually purchased the gun that Kurt used to blow his brilliant brains out with.

The album is actually a collection of prior Earth works, with one new track. Very droney and mathematical music, but with a metal edge. Very melodic for drone work; even my parents like this album.

A DVD is also included, which features a pretty amateurish MiniDV documentary on the group. The interviews with Carlson and other members of the band are kind of annoying (they're not the most eloquent folks in the world...and that's the nicest way I can say it), but the DVD is worth watching for the live performance footage. It's very interesting to see Carlson's odd method of "conducting" his band; the music is deceptively simple, but one wrong note can ruin the entire composition. The communication between the band to ensure that this does not happen is inspiring to watch.

LOVE, "Forever Changes"



Rhino is quickly becoming one of my favorite labels. They've transformed themselves from a teeny little company that produced DVDs of cult 80s TV shows to one of the best labels for re-issued rock classics. The have dutifully remastered and repackaged albums (sometimes even the entire discographies) of bands such as The Grateful Dead, Yes, Talking Heads, The Ramones, Black Sabbath, Elvis Costello, The Monkees, etc. and were responsible for some of the best box sets in recent memory (The ’70s Punk Rebellion, The ’80s Underground, The Last Waltz, Faces Box, Grateful Dead - Beyond Description, etc.)

Now Rhino has done a gorgeous remastering of Love's classic album, "Forever Changes". Love, for those of you unfamiliar with the group, is quite possibly the most underrated rock band to come out of rock's "big bang" in the 60's. Led by Arthur Lee (possibly the era's second most-brilliant pop songwriter, behind Brian Wilson), Love explored a pretty eclectic mix of genres, from garage rock to mariachi to psychedelia. They were also on of the first "racially diverse" rock groups (which, in simpler terms, means that white dudes & black dudes played together), and were a favorite of the Rolling Stones and the Yardbirds.

"Forever Changes", with the exception of two tracks, was reportedly produced in only 64 hours. You'd never be able to tell from the music on the album, which is filled with beautiful melodic shifts, clever vocal play & unique instrumentation. A great album to listen to with headphones outside on a nice sunny day.


In closing, I just spoke with Toby from Burlington's own Oak--sounds like he's busy prepping the band's highly-anticipated EPs for sale at Monday night's show at Winooski's Monkey House. I will certainly be attending & buying an album; hope to see all of you there!

2 comments:

greg davis said...

i just ordered the remastered 7cd box set of sly and family stone albums on rhino. ive heard mp3s and they sound really incredible. cant wait to get that.

i need to check out that earth record. theyve been fairly active as of late.

Eva the Deadbeat said...

hee hee, Blogger Supergroup, you guys will rock, i just know it. if you need a t-shirts for your shows, i am your man!