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Saturday, November 11, 2023



MudvayneMudvayne (Epic) :: Visually, the artwork appears blank unless seen under a black light. Musically, the disc should’ve been left blank too.

David Lee Roth“Blacklight”  (Wawazat!) :: You see?

Bill DanaMy Name...José Jiménez (Kapp) :: You see?

JW-JonesMidnight Memphis Sun (Northern Blues) :: Did I hear a hint of Pat Boone in JW’s voice on this bloozified country twanger? Lemme go play it again; I’ll be right back.

Pat BooneIn A Metal Mood: No More Mr. Nice Guy (Hip-O) :: I bet Tony Bennett wishes he had Ronnie James Dio and Ritchie Blackmore sitting in on one of his swingin’ sessions!

JW-JonesMidnight Memphis Sun (Northern Blues) :: Indeed I did!

Dan ManganNice, Nice, Very Nice (File Under: Music) :: As nice as this gentle romp is, wouldn’t it be nicer if Canada’s answer to Kevin Ayers could now find his Canucklehead counterparts to Cale, Nico, and Eno?

Kevin Ayers“Falling In Love Again” (Island) :: Exactly!

Hadouken!For The Masses (Surface Noise) :: The cover sticker claims that this one contains “The Prodigy’s energy” but it’s just a monotonous retread of Liam Howlett’s brainchild without a single shred of originality. Now you know why the band’s name translated into in English means: “Bland Theft Audio!”

Peter BjornLiving Thing (Sony) :: Track one is awash with a pale pallet of minimal synth sounds and handclaps. Track two introduces the drum machines. Track three, well, you get the idea.

Dusty Rhodes And The River BandPalace And Stage (Side One Dummy) :: Don’t let the band name fool you ’cause this ain’t no country hoe-down, it’s an ambitious aural production that’s reminiscent of ELO-down.

Vienna TengInland Territory (Zoë) :: Is this the richly complex imaginary soundtrack to a silent film or a foreign film? Either way, it’ll provide you with a wealth of mental images that’ll last a lifetime. Close your eyes and see for yourself.

Charles MingusEpitaph (Eagle Eye) :: This two hour excursion into the depths of tuxedoed symphonic avant jazz is boring to watch but an excellent aural delight if you pass on the visuals and just play it as an audio disc.

Billie HolidayThe Life And Artistry Of Lady Day (MVD Visual) :: Stacked & Smacked is more like it.

The Lovely FeathersFantasy Of The Lot (Sparks) :: Hysterically tinged melodrama that dresses like a New Wave queen but kicks like a ’80s synthpop mule.

Geoff BernerKlezmer Mongrels (Jericho Beach) :: If you can’t say anything good about a song called “Half German Girlfriend” with lyrics like: “The Nazi and the Orthodox Jew would both be disgusted if they knew about the dirty things we do,” then don’t say anything at all.

Blue AshNo More, No Less (Collectors’ Choice) :: This debut album from 1973 interprets the mid-’60s Who, right down to the guitar and drums, with pop songs that are more tightly focused than most complete Who albums from that early era, along with a dash of Badfinger thrown in for good measure.

Emma-LeeNever Just A Dream (Special Agent) :: This singing songstress does it all with a switch-hitting style that runs the gamut from languid piano blues to bouncing bossa nova to jazzy horned-up swing. She emotes earthily and wails wildly, but can she rock?

BatusisBatusis (Smog Veil) :: Holy misunderstanding! At first I thought this was some kinda Adam “Batusi” West tribute album! Then I took another look and discovered that it’s a four track EP by Cheetah “Dead Boy” Chrome and Sylvain “Sylvain” Sylvain that’s gotta lotta grungy guitar! Holy overdose!

Kele FlemingWorld In Reverse (Tin Forest) :: Don’t let the ambiguous name fool ya ’cause Kele’s a she and she’s got the kind of powerful high ululating voice that, in my world, would be screamin’ out maximum amped rock ’n’ roll just like Grace Slick used to do—so you can imagine just how expressive and impressive Kele sounds singing her own insightfully sensitive songs from behind an acoustic guitar.

The Black PacificThe Black Pacific (Side One Dummy) :: I dunno; sounds like a double time thrashmo version of Marilyn Manson, whadda you think?

The New CzarsDoomsday Revolution (Samson) :: Now that the Ramones are ancient history, these wannabe revolutionaries are D-U-M-B enuff to think that the coast is clear for them to steal the Gabba Four’s patriotic American eagle logo without anyone noticing—which only proves that they’ve been snorting too much Carbona. At least they have the common decency to record an album of Steve Miller meets ZZ Top hard-edged power pop puds instead of the expected “1-2-3-4!” knock-offs, but still...

SIZZLING PLATTER OF THE WEEK: Kate ReidI’m Just Warming Up (self released) :: With song titles like “The Only Dyke At The Open Mic” and “Emergency Dyke Project,” you can probably guess which side of the swingin’ gate country singin’ Kate is straddling. She’s got a brain as big as her heart and a good-natured sense of humor that’s even bigger. But don’t let her cheerful chirpy voice fool ya ’cause Kate’s nobody’s fool, nuh uh. That’s why she prefaces each set of lyrics in the booklet with insightful little explanations and relevant bits of advice like: “In mainstream pop culture, lesbianism is becoming a marketing tool to reach male audiences. Not good.”

Of course Kate’s right but, what with me bein’ a guy who still harbors eleventh hour Honor Blackman conversion fantasies, I’m not ashamed in the least to admit that talkin’ tales like “Ex-Junkie Boyfriend” and “Truckdriver” made me fall head over heels for her.

Marlene Dietrich“Falling In Love Again” (Decca) :: Can’t help it.

Be seeing you!

Sat, November 11, 2023 | link 

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