|Here's Jon Ronson's 2003 documentary I Am, Unfortunately, Randy Newman.|
Monday, November 28, 2016
Friday, November 25, 2016
|Sun Ra's Inter-Media Arts show in Huntington, NY is being issued as a 3LP/2CD set by Modern Harmonic.|
Originally broadcast by New York's WNYC-FM in November 1991, this epic Arkestra performance at Inter-Media-Arts Center in Huntington, NY was expertly captured by the station's senior concert recording engineer Ed Haber on April 20, 1991 as a direct to 2-track mix overseen by Michael DeMark. It all makes for an exceptionally great sounding document spread over 3LPs or 2CDs.
Here's the exhuberant Modern Harmonic announcement for the Black Friday limited release of Sun Ra and his Arkestra at Inter-Media Arts, April 1991 followed by the line-up for the show, the complete tracklisting and a couple of audio clips.
For other Record Store Day releases slated for Black Friday, check this leaked list we posted a few weeks back which you'll find to be remarkably accurate.
A TRIPLE LP AND DOUBLE CD OF INTERPLANETARY PERFECTION!
A stunning live Sun Ra event, recorded at the Inter-Media Arts Center in New York, April 20, 1991! Modern Harmonic proudly presents this very special Sun Ra recording, officially issued for the first time ever!
This concert was just two years before Ra’s “earthly departure” – and his keyboard work was amazingly strident and vibrant here. The Arkestra was in perfect form as well; this special night also showcased the Arkestra’s vocal magnificence with selections and sections powerfully performed by June Tyson, Michael Ray, T.C. Carney, James Jacson, and John Gilmore. Rarely will you hear the Arkestra with such clarity!
Many Sun Ra releases were derived from live performances, but seldom did they have the quality or sonic-punch of this recording. We’d like to extend a big thank you to the folks at radio station WNYC, for perfectly capturing this event. At Modern Harmonic, we’re celebrating this evening by releasing the complete performance across three premium RTI LP pressings – or on two compact discs – with both configurations packaged in stunning, tri-fold chipboard jackets. Our limited edition release also features extensive liners by noted jazz writer Howard Mandel, and is wrapped in a gorgeous design by legendary album-art icon, Jim Flora. Here's the teaser clip...
Sun Ra and His Arkestra
Inter-Media Arts Center, April 20, 1991 (broadcast on WNYC-FM, November 9, 1991)
Sun Ra—keyboards and synthesizer
John Gilmore—tenor saxophone and clarinet (vocal on East of the Sun)
Marshall Allen—alto saxophone and flute
June Tyson—vocals and violin
James Jackson—bassoon and flute and drum
Earl “Buster” Smith—drums
Noel Scott—alto saxophone
Charles Davis—baritone saxophone
Michael Ray—trumpet and vocals
Chris Capers—trumpet and flugelhorn
Theodore Thoms—percussion and dance
1. Intro / Springtime Again – 6:44
2. Advice to Medics / Friendly Galaxy – 8:38
3. Love In Outer Space – 7:26
4. Hocus Pocus – 3:48
5. The Mayan Temples – 8:36
6. Yeah Man – 3:25
7. Prelude to a Kiss – 6:31
8. Space Is The Place / We Travel The Spaceways – 5:51
9. Intro / Early Autumn – 6:37
10. Opus In Springtime – 4:28
11. Retrospect / East of the Sun – 7:57
12. Carefree – 7:18
13. Cocktails for Two – 5:14
14. Planet Earth Day – 8:04
15. Space Loneliness – 7:47
16. We Travel The Spaceways – 7:08
Tuesday, November 22, 2016
|Watch Alejandro perform Farewell To The Good Times and Always A Friend which he played with The Boss.|
Monday, November 21, 2016
|Leftcoast garage kingpin Charles Moothart of GØGGS and Fuzz infamy debuts CFM in T.O. tonight.|
Charles Francis Moothart II went mostly unseen for a month or two. A prisoner of time in a dimension of sorrow and confusion, Moothart was hitting a personal crossroads and nursing a brief and impermanent break up with his long time girlfriend/band mate by retreating, putting the pain from his head into his tape machine, stepping away from struggling for the answers in order to sit with them and pull from them. Greasing the pain to form relief. The only medicine was to challenge himself and sand down enough to break through the fear of failure. To see it all through to the end and find out what stood as truth.
Now, after the fog has lifted, upon returning, Moothart is sharing the souvenir of his travels to another dimension, a postcard from a dream in which time stood still, the girl got away and the wolf-man-glass-in-hand risked it all for the sea change.
Sometimes you realize you must shed what’s most comfortable to find truth in yourself again and so Moothart has denied the comforts of being the sideman to give listeners a slice of himself. Moothart has recruited high school friend Michael Anderson to play guitar, lone-wolf-jack-of-all-trades Tyler Frome on bass and Audacity’s powerhouse drummer Thomas Alvarez to round out the rhythm section of this outsider band.
Check out the tracks Brain of Clay, Lunar Heroine from CFM's Still Life of Citrus and Slime debut and The Stooge off the new Homegrown Paranoia EP on In The Red. And be sure to pick up a copy of Roya Biazar's dope poster (see below) if they're selling them at the show.
Saturday, November 19, 2016
|Pat Thomas's Coming Home: Original Ghanaian Highlife & Afrobeat Classics 1967-81 is out now on Strut.|
The U.K.-based Strut label has just released the first early career retrospective for Ghanaian highlife master Pat Thomas, covering the Golden Voice Of Africa's late ‘60s big band highlife recordings, funky '70s Afrobeat jams through to the disco hi-life movement of the early ‘80s. With the 65 year-old Thomas now dazzling audiences on the road in support of last year’s album with Kwishibu Area Band, the well-chosen Coming Home 2CD / 3LP collection offers an enlightening glimpse of Thomas’ exceptionally productive and incredibly influential career in Ghana prior to his arrival in Toronto during the 80s and inevitable resurgence.
When a new incarnation of Broadway Dance Band was created in ‘67, led by Ebo Taylor, Thomas received his first big break. “Ebo started to write new songs. I added the lyrics and sang them and it worked very well. Ebo and I agreed on things at a very early stage. I understood him and where he was coming from with his music.”
The partnership with Taylor would become one of the enduring forces in Ghanaian music during the ‘70s, creating a fresh, progressive new highlife sound. They played together as The Blue Monks – regularly appearing Accra's popular Tip Toe Gardens nightclub – before forming Sweet Beans in '74 with the backing of Ghana’s Cocoa Marketing Board. Listen to "Merebre" off the False Lover album by Pat Thomas & The Sweet Beans.
The False Lover album for the Gapophone label established Thomas across Ghana. His backing band, The Sweet Beans – featuring bassist Anim Addo, drummer Kofi Addison, guitarist Bannerman Wood, keyboardist Bob Fician, percussionist J.N.K. Asiedu, trumpeter Lovis Hammond, saxophonists J.R. Arhin, Atta Kennedy, Korle Patrick and Conacov – eventually disbanded but the musicians stayed together as Marijata. “The guys initially used Jewel Ackah as their vocalist but they involved me and I re-vocalled the album. This became the ‘Pat Thomas Introduces Marijata’ LP. At that time, I would go to George Prah at Gapophone to ask for money and he would say, ‘if you want me to pay you, go and write a song!’ So, tracks like ‘Coming Home’ came about that way, written on the spot.”
A second Marijata album followed before a damaging coup in Ghana in 1979. “Jerry Rawlings’ 'house-cleaning' was designed to stop corruption but it seriously damaged our country’s music culture. That's when the music died. Before that, there was so much music everywhere. It was so important and then the coup destroyed it all. Bars and venues closed everywhere because of the strict curfews.” Check out the scorching "I Need More" from 1977's Pat Thomas & Marijata album on Gapophone.
Thomas left for Berlin and stayed true to his highlife roots, becoming the first Ghanaian to record highlife there. “Guitarist George Darko was already there playing clubs with his band and I then began to work with some great Ghanaian highlife players who eventually became the Roots Anabo Band. There was Ekow Brown, Sammy Quist on guitar and a guy called Willie. We were put in a big studio, Audio-Tonstudio, where many big artists had recorded. We simply called the album 1980. George Darko played on it, Bob Fician came in on keyboards, Kologbo on rhythm guitar, Nat Osmasu on bass." Listen to the synth-tweaked dancefloor destroyer Yamona from the 1980 album below.
Thomas then travelled to Togo and London before heading to Canada where he spent much of the rest of the 80s living, teaching and performing in Toronto as part of the vibrant Queen West music scene. “A professor/doctor friend arranged for me to come over to Toronto. There was a band there who took me on. While I was flying in, looking at Toronto from the sky, I thought it looked so heavy! I had a sense that I was going to live in this city and I end up there on and off for 10 years. I taught percussion privately there, played for universities, Ghanaian societies and a WOMAD Festival. The band and I also landed a one-year contract at The BamBoo nightclub in the city.”
Pat is now back in Ghana, recording and touring worldwide with Kwashibu Area Band, a project put together by talented young musicians Kwame Yeboah and Ben Abarbanel Wolff. Explains Thomas, “Highlife is part of Ghana's musical DNA but, what people like Ebo Taylor and I did was to make it fresh and modernize it, make it more relevant to our day and more funky. We took the great Kwa music of Kumasi and other local styles and added Western elements with new horn arrangements, vocals, guitar and other developments. Since then, highlife has become the world's music and I am proud to still bring it to audiences wherever we play." Check out the horn-hyped "We Are Coming Home" from 1976's Stage Two album on Gapophone.
Friday, November 18, 2016
Wednesday, November 16, 2016
Tuesday, November 15, 2016
|Jesse Locke's Simply Saucer book launches with an Edgar Breau solo performance at Monarch Tavern December 11.|
Here's the press release...
As a founding contributor of the online publication Weird Canada, Locke has made a career out of excavating underground sounds. It only makes sense that he has always been drawn to the cult heroes of Hamilton’s subterranean scene, Simply Saucer. Mostly unrecognized in their ’70s heyday, the electro-rockers were unheralded pioneers with a reputation that grows every year. Simply Saucer’s posthumous debut, Cyborgs Revisited, was first released in 1989 by Mole Sound Recordings. It earned further acclaim with a 2003 CD reissue from Sonic Unyon Records, and will be celebrated with a 40th anniversary expanded edition from In The Red in 2017. Locke contributed the liner notes to this release.
Heavy Metalloid Music combines Locke’s trademark sharp writing and investigative style with incredible access to Simply Saucer. This book is a must-have for fans of music biographies and may just turn Simply Saucer into your favourite band you’ve never heard of.
Heavy Metalloid Music will be available at select independent bookstores across Canada, online retailers, as well as the Eternal Cavalier Press website on November 24. You can pre-order a copy right here here.
Alison Lang of Broken Pencil says “Jesse Locke has long been a gifted diviner of Canada’s brilliant and under heard musical weirdos. With Heavy Metalloid Music, he not only exposes the wild and sometimes unbelievable tale of Simply Saucer, but has produced a fascinating snapshot of the economic and cultural climate of Ontario in the ’60s and ’70s. A smart, funny, and totally reverent paean to Hamilton’s Hawkwind.”
Sam Sutherland, author of Perfect Youth: The Birth of Canadian Punk says “Better late than never this book goes a long way towards canonizing one of Canada’s most inventive and influential bands. Providing all the context and history that even the beefiest of liner notes couldn’t dream of, this is an essential tome for anyone with a passion for Hamilton, psychedelics, and under-appreciated genius getting its due.”
The Toronto launch of Heavy Metalloid Music features a solo performance by Simply Saucer mainman Edgar Breau and a discussion of the book with Jesse Locke and Sam Sutherland at Monarch Tavern (12 Clinton) on Sunday, December 11 from 2pm to 6pm. No cover. Signed copies will be available.
For the Hamilton launch on Saturday December 17, there'll be a full-band performance by Simply Saucer and a discussion of the book with Jesse Locke and Gary Pig Gold at Hammer City Records (228 James St. North, Hamilton) at 7pm. $5 cover. Signed copies will be available.
|Thee Oh Sees unveil their new An Odd Entrances album Thursday night – here's what it sounds like...|
7:00 pm - doors open
7:30 pm - Twist
8:30 pm - American Lips
9:15 pm - Thee Oh Sees
Monday, November 14, 2016
|Brazilian singer/songwriter Seu Jorge reprises the songs he interpreted for The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou.|
John Cale's classic live album, Fragments Of A Rainy Season, featuring many solo versions from his enduring catalogue, plus his brilliant interpretation of Leonard Cohen's "Hallelujah" along with previously unreleased outtakes, is being reissued by Double Six/Domino on December 9. The 3 LP triple gatefold version with 8 previously unreleased tracks will be limited to one pressing on heavy weight vinyl with digital download card. Check the complete track listing right here.
Watch Abby Portner's creepy cool new video for Cale's version of Hallelujah following Malcolm Gladwell's discussion of the song from his Revisionist History podcast and the Domino press release below.
Fragments of a Rainy Season is the the first live John Cale album to feature him performing solo and "unplugged" – before that term became a mid-'90s buzzword. In contrast to the jaundiced punk truculence of Sabotage/Live (1979) or Even Cowgirls Get the Blues (1986), Fragments gives us Cale at his most melodic and moving, a mellowed and certainly a soberer man in a Yamamoto jacket and a lopsided haircut running through a selection of his prettiest songs.
It's a Cale many of us love deeply, a man alone at a concert-hall Steinway revisiting the pop-rock of 'Paris 1919' and 'A Child's Christmas in Wales', as wistful and whimsical as any '70s singer-songwriter holding court at L.A.'s Troubadour club. It's the Cale who disavowed the spiky nihilism of the Velvets, inspired instead by melodicism of Paul McCartney and Brian Wilson.
Cale being Cale, Fragments isn't all rueful tenderness. The deceptively jaunty 'Darling I Need You' is flippantly introduced as a song about "religious awakening in the southern part of the United States", while Elvis' 'Heartbreak Hotel' is no less gothic in the solo version here than it is in the Grand Guignol horror show of the original on Slow Dazzle. 'Guts' is as close as Cale ever came to Lou Reed at his most withering. It's easy to forget that – years before Jeff Buckley and The X-Factor – he was the first artist to recognize the hymnal majesty of Leonard Cohen's 'Hallelujah', or that it was his original 1991 reading of the song that popped up on the soundtrack of Shrek.
Revisionist History: Hallelujah by Malcolm Gladwell
One night, Cohen is playing this version at the Beacon Ballroom in New York and the musician John Cale happens to be in the audience. Cale is a legend, used to be in The Velvet Underground, a really pivotal figure in the rock 'n roll avant-garde. He hears this song come out of Cohen's mouth and he's blown away. So he asks Cohen to send him the lyrics. He wants to do a version of it. So Cohen faxes him fifteen pages - who knows what the lyrics actually are at this point! Cale says, that for his version, he took the "cheeky" parts. He ends up using the first two verses of the original combined with three verses from the live performance. And Cale changes some words - most importantly, he changes the theme and brings back the biblical references that Cohen had in the album version.
Cale is really the one who cracks the code of Hallelujah according to Alan Light. This cover version appears on a Leonard Cohen tribute album put together by a French music magazine - it was called "I'm Your Fan"- came out in 1991. Almost nobody bought "I'm Your Fan", except, weirdly, me. I think I found it in a remainder bin in a little record store on Colombia Road in Washington, DC. Another person who bought "I'm Your Fan" was a woman named Janine, who lived in Park Slope in Brooklyn. She was good friends with a young aspiring singer named Jeff Buckley. He used to house sit at her apartment. And one time, when Buckley's there, he happens to see the CD of "I'm Your Fan" - he plays it - he hears John Cale's version of Hallelujah and decides to do his own version of that version. He performs it at a tiny little bar in the East Village called Sin-e where he happens to be heard by an executive at Columbia Records. So Columbia Records ends up signing Buckley and he records his version of Hallelujah for the album 'Grace' which ends up being Buckley's first, and only, studio album. It came out in 1994.
Now I'm guessing that Buckley's version is the one you're most familiar with - it's the famous one, the definitive one. It's not really a cover of Leonard Cohen's 'Hallelujah', it's a cover of John Cale's cover of Leonard Cohen's 'Hallelujah' only with Cale's piano swapped out for a guitar and of course, Buckley swaps out Cale's voice for his own extraordinary voice.
Here's Abby Portner's new video for John Cale's version of Hallelujah...
Sunday, November 13, 2016
|You'll be just as surprised as Gayle to find out that Q-Tip owns a Flamin' Groovies LP along with this Herbie flexi.|
Saturday, November 12, 2016
Friday, November 11, 2016
|It'll be well worth a trip to Buffalo to catch Wayne Hancock & crew playing a Sunday matinee from 4 to 7 pm.|
Here's the press release for the new Slingin' Rhythm album on Bloodshot Records...
And while “The Train” is indeed a throwback, the funny thing is, the more retro he gets, the fresher he sounds. His songs about the everyday and the everyman, with their driving pulse and live-in-the-moment vibe, have a character and passion that go beyond a particular time.
Even though it’s been over three years since his last album, Ride, no grass has grown under Wayne’s boots—he’s on the road 200 days a year. Slingin’ Rhythm, with its emphasis on off-the-cuff instrumental interplay and extended soloing, Wayne and his band drive down the centerline between tight and loose. Like a latter day Bob Wills, spontaneously calling out encouragement, or Hank Williams and Ernest Tubb effortlessly knocking out smile-through-the-pain honky-tonk, Wayne “The Train” Hancock delivers an unvarnished, BS-free restorative.
When it comes to classic trope of the murder ballad, the subject is often spoken through metaphor or deeply formalized imagery. Not so with Wayne. He gets to the point in “I Killed Them Both” with a chilling bluntness that’d make Johnny Paycheck nod with approval. The thing is, though, you might miss the tragedy at first because that bouncy back beat will have you on the dance floor. On the languid lament “Dog Day Blues” you can feel the sweat rolling down the back of your neck. The attention to detail in “Small Bouquet of Roses” paints a distinct picture of heartbreak.
Wayne teamed up once again with his producer-for-life Lloyd Maines (Uncle Tupelo, Terry Allen, Ray Wylie Hubbard) and recorded on the fly, never doing a song the same way twice. That’s what gives Slingin’ Rhythm its relentless energy—and with a band this killer, you’ve got to let them off the leash. “2 String Boogie” and Merle Travis’s “Divorce Me C. O. D.” bounce along on crisp, jazzy guitar licks, referencing masters like Chet Atkins and Hark Garland right up through the neo-retro scenesters like Deke Dickerson. And the loungy Texas swing in “Wear Out Your Welcome” and the instrumental “Over Easy” freshens up the template laid out by the great Texas Playboys steel player Leon McAuliffe.
Slingin' Rhythm is available on 180 gram vinyl w/digital download from Bloodshot Records.
|Fans of Steely Dan, 10 CC and/or the Doobie Bros will find a lot to love about YGSF's West End Coast album.|
Thursday, November 10, 2016
Wednesday, November 9, 2016
|"I Don't Care" is off the new Friends & Lovers album by Argentine post-punk crew Las Kellies now on tour.|
Tuesday, November 8, 2016
Monday, November 7, 2016
|Check the amazing 50 year-old footage of Boston's Travis Pike & The Brattle Street East playing Watch Out Woman.|
|Read about Travis Pike in the latest issue of Ugly Things.|
|Cheap Time's Jeffrey Novak has joined his Heavy Cream pals (and a Maestro Rhythm King) in Savoy Motel.|
Sunday, November 6, 2016
Saturday, November 5, 2016
|T.O.'s now defunct No Dynamics featured Carl Didur of Zacht Automaat who are playing a skype show at Double Double Land Sunday.|